Dec
17

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Frozen – Movie Review

frozen movie review

frozen movie review

Seriously this movie was adorable! I think I enjoyed it almost as much as my children did, which lets face it with kids movies is rare.

The music was exquisite so good that I don’t think I would mind listening to it if my kids had the CD over and over again haha.

I love that this is more a story about the relationship of sisters then just a love story as most animated movies are. I know my sister would go to great lengths to help me and vice versa.

I really don’t want to spoil things by giving you too many details although I will say that the preview where the Snowman has his nose fly off and the deer is trying to eat it never actually happened in the movie and I just kept waiting for it :-( So, hopefully with my telling you not to look for that scene you won’t be distracted by it like I was.

I highly recommend making an effort to take your family to see this in the theater or at least try renting it when it comes out.

And here’s one of the songs so you can hear what I’m talking about if you haven’t already :-)

I found a printable paper doll of the older sister here!

Dec
12

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How To Make Hair Bows

free sewing patterns for how to make hair bows

Yes she’s brave, but don’t worry the tiger is fake!

So my niece needed a big red bow because she wanted to be Snow White for Halloween. But those over-priced boutique bows are a little out of reach for my sister (she has 6 kids). So they decided it was time to call Aunt Joquena. How could I refuse, I mean look at her! My niece Giselle is just too gorgeous so I said yes, of course I would make her a bow.

Of course I’d never made one before, but I wasn’t about to let that stop me. And I didn’t want to follow someone else’s pattern because then I couldn’t brag about my own resourcefulness! So here it is, the easiest and cheapest way of how to make hair bows you will ever see.  I’ve eliminated the need for ribbon which is the most expensive component.  Don’t worry the pattern is free and if you follow my advice in the video your materials will be too!

 How To Make Hair Bows – Part 1

 

How To Make Hair Bows – Part 2

How to Make Hair Bows – Free Printable Sewing Patterns

Click on the blue link below the pattern image to open a pdf file. If you just try to print the image you see your sizing will be all wonky!

making hair bows

click the link below to print your free how to make hair bows pattern

how to make hair bows sewing pattern

Dec
10

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Is it still a snow day if there isn’t any snow?

snow day



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snow day

I used to love snow days. I grew up in Illinois and we’d wake up ridiculously early and turn on the radio and hold our breath waiting for the broadcaster to announce that school was closed for the day. At the time I never thought twice about how my mom felt about all the school closings. Now that I’m a mom I think I understand. My mom was probably less than thrilled as she saw her productivity time go out the window.

So I live in Tennessee and school gets canceled even without snow. I’ve heard it’s because they don’t have any of the equipment (plows etc) to deal with inclement weather. So sorry everyone there will be no modern homemakers videos today. Sorry husband I’m not even going to try to keep the house clean today. I’m going to watch cartoons and color with the kids and hopefully they go back tomorrow!

So does anyone have an answer to my question? Is it still called a snow day even if there isn’t any snow?

Dec
6

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How To Make Pico De Gallo

If you’ve never made it you’ve absolutely got to learn how to make pico de gallo.  It’s so simple and so healthy, at least until you add in all those taco chips haha!



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VIDEO TRANSCRIPT – How To Make Pico De Gallo

Want to learn how to make pico? Modern Homemakers video intro and theme song. Hi I’m Renee from modern homemakers and today we’re going to learn how to make pico de gallo. I could just eat this whole bowl all by myself, yum. Does it make you jealous. Don’t you want some? To make pico de gallo you’re going to need cilantro, onion, tomatoes, optional salt and if you want it spicier you can throw in some jalapeno peppers or another kind of hot peppers.

When you buy a bunch of cilantro just take about half of it for your pico de gallo, so about half is all you’re gonna need unless you’re going to make a really big batch. You take the ends off so just kind of snap them off with your fingers. We want the leaves is what we want, this part is not very tasty. And it’s ok to have some of that in there. Like I’m not super meticulous about this so I’m going to snap down there but sometimes you’ll see these that I’ve torn off, some of them of the stem on there and that’s ok.

So then we’ve got that bunch with most of the stem removed. We’re gonna cut the half of an onion. So you could do this in the food processor but then it’s salsa. If you blend it in the food processor, so the pico is larger chunks and it’s cut up by hand. So after I do it in half then I do the dicing. This is actually just the other half of that onion because we’re having chili, so make sure you watch the how to make vegetarian chili video and you’ll see what happened to the other half of the onion. Pico goes really good with vegetarian chili. You could also maybe make some homemade guacamole. Yum, some cornbread is another thing that goes good with that meal.

We want this diced up kind of small since this is gonna be making our pico with it. Once I’ve gone through I’ll go through again just to make sure that my pieces of onion are small. I like a wooden cutting board. Some people like the ceramic, but ceramic really will dull your knives. So I prefer to use a wooden cutting board. Then we’re just gonna put all this in our bowl that we’ve got chopped.

Cilantro is kind of hard to cut, you have to get it, kind of bunch it up make it real tight and as tight and as small as you can. And make sure you’re watching what you’re doing. Just keep on gathering it in together and bunching it up small and chop it. I love the smell of cilantro. We’ve tried growing it, but it seems like we just haven’t had real good success. It looks well and it’s growing well and it’s producing well and then the next thing you know it’s bolted and then it’s all gone. So I don’t know if we’re doing something wrong with that of if it just has a short lived season. So I find that you can buy a bunch of it for 69 cents and that’s kind of what I’ve been doing. For right now I’ve given up on growing it.

After you make it through one time chopping it then I usually just go back again maybe just like this. Oh that smells so good. And then scrape that in there. And then last we’ve got the tomatoes. And this just depends on how much you want to make I’m going to do 4 or 5. Cut it in half, make sure you get rid of that little stem piece. A lot of people don’t do that. If you get, when you have pico out at a restaurant you’ll notice that a lot of times it has that little stem piece in there. So the same way, just cut it in strips, turn it on its end and cut it again, keep it small.

This doesn’t take long. This is something that tastes better after its been sitting in the refrigerator for awhile. So make it ahead of time. A lot of time I’ll make enough to last a couple days and it tastes great the next time all those flavors just kind of marinate together. I’ll probably leave this mild and not put a pepper in it this time for the kids. Or I might divide it in half and leave half of it mild and put a pepper in the other half of it. And we’re just gonna continue that for the five tomatoes.

I’m gonna put a little bit of salt in here. You do want to reduce your salt intake so I’m just going to just a little bit. Do use a high quality sea salt or don’t use any at all. So here is this is Himalayan salt or you can use the Celtic salt. And we’re gonna just kind of make it light. And we’ll mix all of that in. So that half onion was plenty. I don’t know sometimes you get this at the restaurant and it’s like all onion no tomato. Alright let’s see if it tastes good. Mmmh, perfect! So remember it tastes good now, it will taste even better after it’s been in the refrigerator for a few hours. Please subscribe to our youtube channel you might also enjoy gluten free cornbread.

 

Dec
3

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Tatted Snowflake

tatting instructions for tatted snowflake

This tatted snowflake can be turned into an ornament or you can make a bunch to form a lace tablecloth snowflake runner.

Here’s a step by step video tutorial on how to make a tatted snowflake ornament just in time for Christmas.

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Tatted Snowflake Part 1

Tatted Snowflake Part 2

Tatted Snowflake Part 3

 

Tatted Snowflake Part 4

tatted snowflake pattern

Here’s what it looks like as a tatted snowflake ornament

Tatted Snowflake – Free Pattern

(Tatted Clover Leaf Snowflake With Star Interior)

Find the needle that works with crochet thread size 10 (med needle)

Ring 1 of first clover leaf:

(3 stitches, make a joining loop) x3 close

Ring 2 of first clover leaf:

3 stitches, make a joining loop to the last loop of the first ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, 3 stitches) x4

Ring 3 of first clover leaf:

Make 3 stitches, join it to the last loop of the previous ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, make 3 stitches) x2, close

Center Chain Section:

(Chain 3, make a loop) x2, chain final 3, close

 

*Ring 1 of second clover leaf:

3 stitches, joining with first loop on the previous clover leaf ring, 3 stitches, joining loop to the middle loop of the last ring, 3 stitches close

Ring 2 of second clover leaf:

3 stitches, make a joining loop to the last loop of the last ring of the previous ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, 3 stitches) x4

Ring 3 of second clover leaf:

Make 3 stitches, join it to the last loop of the previous ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, make 3 stitches) x2, close

Center Chain Section:

(Chain 3, make a loop) x2, chain final 3, close

 

*Repeat the steps of the second clover leaf until you have 6 clover leafs.

Join the last 2 loops of the last ring with the first 2 loops of the very first ring of the first clover leaf

 

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Tatted Clover Leaf Snowflake

Find the needle that works with crochet thread size 10 (med needle)

Ring 1 of first clover leaf:

(3 stitches, make a joining loop) x3 close

Ring 2 of first clover leaf:

3 stitches, make a joining loop to the last loop of the first ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, 3 stitches) x4

Ring 3 of first clover leaf:

Make 3 stitches, join it to the last loop of the previous ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, make 3 stitches) x2, close

Center Chain Section:

(Chain 3, make a loop) x2, chain final 3, close

 

*Ring 1 of second clover leaf:

3 stitches, joining with first loop on the previous clover leaf ring, 3 stitches, joining loop to the middle loop of the last ring, 3 stitches close

Ring 2 of second clover leaf:

3 stitches, make a joining loop to the last loop of the last ring of the previous ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, 3 stitches) x4

Ring 3 of second clover leaf:

Make 3 stitches, join it to the last loop of the previous ring, (make 3 stitches, make a loop, make 3 stitches) x2, close

Center Chain Section:

(Chain 3, make a loop) x2, chain final 3, close

*Repeat the steps of the second clover leaf until you have 6 clover leafs.

Join the last 2 loops of the last ring with the first 2 loops of the very first ring of the first clover leaf

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Nov
26

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Winter Gardening

chard, dandelion greens and green onions from my winter garden



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These hoop houses fit perfectly over my 55 gallon raised beds!

These hoop houses fit perfectly over my 55 gallon raised beds!

So I’m not doing much gardening this winter because we decided we need a break after all the work of summer gardening. Because we live in zone 7 and we had already planted some plants (that should hopefully live through the winter) I have decided to clear out the beds which are full of dead plants and weeds. I’m going to try to keep my kale chard and onions alive if nothing else!

 

 

plastic barrel raised bed winter gardening

Here’s my harvest

I was super surprised to see some of the beds were loaded with the biggest and healthiest looking dandelions I had ever seen. I decided to go ahead and harvest them. These aren’t really my favorite green (they have a bitter taste) but they were in my organic raised bed and they had even been fertilized with the boogie brew. So I decided to harvest them with the rest of my greens and not pull them out for the winter and I’m curious to see if they can handle the drop in temperature as well.
Have you ever tried winter gardening where you live? If so what has worked for you any tips?

Nov
21

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How To Make A Soaker Hose Part 2

Here’s part 2 of “How To Make A Soaker Hose”. This video will be focusing on how to get proper water pressure and the use of rain barrels and pumps in order to use chlorine free water. If you haven’t already, make sure to check out how to make a soaker hose part 1 which focuses on the construction of the irrigation system.  Keep scrolling to the end for a link to the pump I use.  I highly recommend it it’s very powerful.

How To Make A Soaker Hose Part 2

This is the pump I use to connect my rain barrels to my soaker hose irrigation system that I built from scratch.

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT – How To Make A Soaker Hose Part 2

Well hello everybody this is josh and I wanted to give you just a couple pieces of follow up information. Last time I had visited this project we had the overall soaker hoses finished. We had the raised bed irrigation finished across 3 10×4 beds and then 1 4×40 bed. And I got a lot of questions about how to handle the aspect of city water pressure and how to calculate the gallons per minute and then how much pressure was needed. And so I wanted to answer some of those questions here in a follow up video. And just kind of show you where I took things to figure out that problem, because quite honestly I wasn’t sure what the answer was and so I had to do a lot of calculations had to call a lot of companies and then finally figured out a solution that I think works well that actually opened up the opportunity to take rain barrels and push them out here to the raised beds.

And so I’ll just kind of show with my fancy camera work here on my cell phone, I’m about to winterize for a winter garden, so I just took out a lot of my summer crops. I’m about to put on the different hoop houses and kind of get things rolling to germinate my seeds in here but before I did that I wanted to kind of capture what I did with the irrigation system tied to rain barrels and then also tied to the opportunity to push through a pump. And wanted to give some of the details about how I calculated how many gallons per minute I was going to need to figure out the power of the pump I was going to need to push out here. So I’m going to go ahead and cut to the pump itself and then we’ll go ahead and go through those calculations. Modern homemakers video intro and theme song.

So this is the information I captured for everybody that kind of shows how I calculated the number of gallons per minute I was gonna need to get enough pressure to push through those pvc pipes that I had drilled in order to get the soaker hose setup that we had. And so these are the details, city pressure, what I did to figure that out was I took a 5 gallon bucket and I timed how long it took to fill that all the way to the top. And that was 40 seconds, and then I determined we’ll roughly add about 7.5 gallons per minute and then calculated that out by 60 to get 440 gallons per hour. Now, I didn’t check my math before I started recording this but you kind of see the problem solving process I kind of went through here.

So then I started looking at water pumps, started get what their gallons per hour would be and then dividing that down to get gallons per minute and then I had to run it through that calculation to figure out that for my instance it was 40 seconds to fill it up and then I had to run it through a calculation to get that what it would be for 60 seconds for example. So then I found a couple that were close, I got into this irington, and I got several at home depot but they weren’t enough gallons per hour, but I found the wayne pump which is 720 gallons per hour and this puppy is designed to like take down lakes and all sorts of stuff where you can drain lakes and anyway so that’s what I went with ad I’m very glad I did. I thought it was going to be too powerful but it was actually not at all, it was actually perfect as you’ll see here in just a moment.

So northern tools has this pump “if you follow the link in the description back to modern homeakers I’ll post the exact pump there and where you can get it” and let me go ahead and click this link. Northern tool has the pump and also you can get the pump at amazon which is what I ended up doing, it was just a little bit better deal. In this case it looks like $160 bucks now. I don’t know if it’s still that price whenever you look. I think I got it for a little less I think it was on sale whenever I got it, but anyway I’ll show you the pump here in just a second but that’s just an image for you to reference here so that’s how I figured out how many gallons per minute gallons per hour I had with my city pressure because remember I designed the whole system to work off the city pressure. And then what happened was once I took the city pressure off when I realized all the chlorine was going to be killing the plants I then had to find another solution to make that work. Which I’ll walk through here in just a second. So basically we get to a point where we need to cut down all of the chlorine and we also need to have enough pressure to push the raised bed.

So it’s not the best showing with all of these leaves here coming down in the fall but I figured rather than blow the patio off I’d create this video and then be able to share this with everybody. So this is the pump that is about 1 horse power, that will take the um water, and you can do it a couple of different ways. Yeah, you could come straight in from the city and you could go into the inlet here, but keep in mind the inlet, I hope I’m informing right, I have the manual here in front of me but check the manual I think it’s a 1 inch inlet that then goes to a ¾ inch outlet and that’s kind of important. And you have to get the right type of hose that comes in. You have tpo get a reinforced hose on the inlet because it’s so powerful at the 1 horsepower that it’ll collapse anything that’s not a reinforced hose. It was a related item that I could purchase on amazon and so I was able to go that direction.

So with that reinforced hose, again it was a related item on amazon I just when ahead and went with it, I have not had any problems with it, it has allowed me to pull the water in, and the 1 horse power has not crushed and collapsed the hose. So my system is pretty simple, I can come straight out of a rain barrel I have a, let’s see what is this thing a 130 gallon rain barrel and I have 3 of these. If I don’t have rain collecting from the gutters I just zip the top off and then I just put the hose in here and it will suck the water all the way down to the very bottom, not a problem at all. I have a boggie blue water filter that will de-chlorinate the water. This is if I have to come straight out of the house if I don’t have rain water at the time to collect from then I push through the boogie blue and that is going to de-chlorinate it and I just literally set this on the side of the top, let the, I just let the water go on, I’ll just go ahead and turn this on and show you.

I just let the water go in, just like that and I just fill up a 130 gallons, and I’ve got that all set then. That’s going to de-chlorinate it, it goes really fast and then the only thing that I recommend that you do, the pump itself is not a self-priming pump, and so they recommend in the book that you take off this fitting “you should always follow the manufacturer’s instructions” you unscrew this, you ill this section up with water, but I find that to be really cumbersome so what I do is I just hook my water source up to the inlet hose like so, I just join these together, and I push water into the inlet hose right here I just push it in and it will fill up the tank for me, and then once I have it primed I’m able to just turn.

Alright so I just want to introduce you here to kind of the overall flow. I have a the boogie blue filter that I take straight from the house, so it comes straight from the house into the boogie blue which then goes into a rain barrel I have approximately, oh I think it’s something like 400 gallons of rainbarrel capacity, but then if I don’ t actually have rainwater in them I use the de-chlorinator to fill up the rain barrel. And then I have a larger hose, that’s going to sit inside the rain barrel. That’ snakes down to the front of pump and then I have the wayne 1 horsepower portable lawn pump and that is what fits the standards necessary to push out all the pressure needed out to the rain barrels.

So basically we turn this on, and you have to prime the pump first, and it’s not too loud, I mean I’m right next to it and I’m able to talk over it, if I stand back a few feet it’s really not bad at all. Anyway so that’s going to take from the source water which is coming from the rain barrels into the pump, out the standard hose, and that’s going to go out to the raised beds. OK this will just show you what the pump does in terms of power when it’s hooked up. We have 10 rows and a 10×4 bed here, so I just actually took everything out for prepping for winter, and so you see the power, this is actually a little bit reduced because I have the second bed connected here and if I need to I can turn the power all the way off here on this second one, and watch what will happen to the first one, it’ll pop up with more pressure. So we have quite a bit of power available.

Then if I want in this bed right here I’ll go ahead and just simply turn this one on, and turn this one off, and you’re going to notice here that we have quite a bit of pressure that’s going to push through that whole network to get out here to the beds. And then same thing, if I, I just planted a bunch of seeds in here for example, so I’ll vary the placement where the water hits simply by taking this bed, turning it on just ever so slightly. You’re going to notice what happens, I’m able to take the pressure down on this bed and kind of distribute it between the 2. And I can take it down to a trickle if needed as well. And then this bed will start to get some of that water and it will start to push out as well. So the 1 horsepower pump has quite a bit of push on it and it’s really what’s necessary to take it from a rain barrel all the way through to your raised beds. All right, that’s it. Just a quick overview, we jumped from 1 bed, I have 3 10×4 beds that are all connected into this network and then those jump all the way over here to another 10×40 bed. And so the 10×40 bed is going to have the same pump capabilities as we’ve found here with all these other beds and the irrigation that pushes through that 1 horsepower pump. Please subscribe to our youtube channel. You might also like how to make a soaker hose.

 

 

Nov
19

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Pigtail Braids

hair braiding styles

2 french braids

pigtail braids

 

Here’s an easy hair tutorial for how to do pigtail braids. It’s not really a french braid but it sure looks like it!  You might also like this post on how to french braid hair.


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Nov
18

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Christmas Coloring Pages

Here’s something for you can print off for your kiddos.  These Christmas coloring pages are fun to color and they make great decorations.  I normally let each of my kids cover their bedroom doors with holiday artwork.  Make sure to click the blue hyperlink below each picture to get a full screen pdf version that you can print without ads!

 

Christmas Coloring Pages – Elf

christmas coloring pages for kids

Click the link below to print your Christmas Coloring Page

christmas coloring pages – elf

Christmas Coloring Pages – Christmas Tree With Presents

christmas coloring pages free

Click the link below to print your Christmas coloring pages

christmas coloring pages – christmas tree

Christmas Coloring Pages – Snowman

printable christmas coloring pages

Click the link below to print your Christmas Coloring Pages

christmas coloring pages – snowman

 

Christmas Coloring Pages – Christmas Party

christmas coloring pages online

Click the link below to print your Christmas coloring page

christmas coloring pages – christmas party

Christmas Coloring Pages – Playing in the snow

free christmas coloring pages to print

Click the link below to print your Christmas coloring pages

christmas coloring pages – playing in the snow

 

Nov
18

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How To Be A Good Husband – The Chauffeur

Continuing in our series on how to be a good husband, Travis explains why he chooses to be the chauffeur.



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