This weekend, in preparation for the 4th of July we will be tackling a variety of projects for decorating and to keep the kiddos busy. Because my birthday and our anniversary fall between Saturday and the 4th, this time of year is always a busy time, filled with friends and celebrations. We are also adding a small group fellowship day this weekend, complete with a cookout and swimming, we will be doing some craft projects with all the kids there. I can’t wait to have everyone painting fireworks with pipe cleaners!
So if you haven’t done so already, check out all the great links to 4th of July Food and Crafts from the post earlier this week and share your creations with us all in the comments!
Here is the grocery list for this week’s menus: 7/2 Grocery List
|M: Eggs & Toast
||M: Chicken Caesar Wraps From Cook’s Country Magazine; We substitute creamy Caesar dressing for the mayo & dressing recipe here.
|T: Pear Muffins
||T: Pizza, veggie sticks
|W: French Toast
||W: Hot dogs/sausages, salad
|Th: Chocolate Chip Muffins
||Th: Nebraska Beef Buns, corn
From Cook’s Country Magazine
|F: Blueberry Muffins
||F: Bacon Mac & Cheese, green beans
|S: Chocolate Danish – Filling:Whip 1 pkg. cream cheese with 1 cup sugar. Fold in chocolate chips.Use puff pastry dough cut into squares. fill with 1-2 tbs of chocolate filling. Fold corners together. Bake at 350*F until light golden brown.
|S: Omelets w/ hashbrowns
We love crafts. We also love the 4th of July (it helps that my birthday and our anniversary fall right around this holiday). So here is a collection of sites with some great 4th of July crafts:
AliLilly – especially great for younger kids
AllRecipes – Red, white & blue strawberries
Delish – 4th of July food ideas
Dollar Store Crafts – inexpensive crafts and foods
Enchanted Learning – games, crafts, and worksheets
Family Fun – lots of craft, food, and game ideas
It’s A Blog Party – crafts, food, and decor ideas
My Blessed Life – crafts for older kids and adults; home decor
Lids can get everywhere and get lost easily (especially things like sippy cup lids). Solution? Store lids directly with their container, on it if possible. We keep all our plasticware lids inside a large plastic tub. We keep our CorningWare lids in or on the dishes. We keep sippy cup valves in the cup with the lid on it. Storing the lid with its correct container will save you time and hassle trying to match them up when you need them.
My home will never look like a show home. It is always neat and tidy, but I cannot keep the counters clear. This is because I believe that things I use regularly need to be handy. Cooking and baking supplies that I use everyday are either out on the counter (who wants to lug a KitchenAid mixer in and out of the cupboards 4 or 5 times a week?) or in a cabinet near where I use them. The spices and cooking oils are in the cabinet next to the stove. The cooking utensils are in crocks (and one cool tin can) on the counter next to the stove. Dry erase markers for our family calendar are in a tin can (I love re-using tin cans) on the counter next to where the calendar hangs. Keeping things stored neatly where you use them will make your kitchen run much more smoothly. And using creative storage solutions like a lazy susan or decorative tin cans keep counters tidy, while still keeping your daily use items easily accessible.
A quick tip for kitchen organization: Sort your kitchen by how you use things. Don’t get trapped into the idea that specific cabinets must contain specific items. Sort things in your kitchen and pantry based on how you use them and what you use together.
For example, I have one drawer that contains attachments for my mixer, silicone cupcake liners, frosting tips and bags, pastry blender, and all my measuring cups and spoons. This is my baking drawer. Conventional wisdom may say these things should be put away differently (utensils together, appliance attachments with other appliances etc.) but this works well for my kitchen. Because I bake 4-6 times a week (especially for breaksfasts), having all the needed baking supplies right in one spot is super handy. Plus that drawer is under the counter where my mixer sits and where I can roll dough. So everything I need is all in one spot and I don’t have to walk around the kitchen to grab anything.
Another example is our kid cabinet. We keep all kid dishes, cups, water bottles, and other plasticware together in one lower cabinet. This way the kids can easily get to their dishes for snacks and drinks (and the plasticware when it is their turn to clear the table). No sense in keeping the kid plates in the upper cabinet with other dishes. The people who need to use them can’t get to them.
Do you have old or hand-me-down tee-shirts around your house? Jackie, contributing writer at The Happy Housewife, gives great instructions for turning them into skirts (great for casual or play times) and headbands. Check out this tee-shirt skirt tutorial from The Happy Housewife!
I have been wanting to try a tee-shirt skirt for a while and I can’t wait to get to this project for my girls!