Archives for August 2012

Big Brother and Big Sister Gifts

I hope everyone has been enjoying these final weeks of summer.

We have had a great summer, which included two new members being added to our family!  No, not me!!  Four boys is where I am stopping!

I had two new nephews born within a couple months of each other.  Second best thing to being a mom is being an Auntie!  Wouldn’t you agree?

When I was pregnant with my youngest, a very dear friend of mine put together wonderful little baskets for my older boys and they loved them!  I decided to make a similar gift for my older nieces and nephew so they wouldn’t feel left out when their baby brothers received a bunch of gifts at the shower that I was going to be attending.

Instead of a basket, I decided to use cloth tote bags that I purchased from Joann’s.   I also purchased two iron-on transfers that said “Big Brother” and “Big Sister”. I knew that my nieces and nephew already had the T-shirts that said, “Big Brother”/”Big Sister”, so I didn’t add those, but wouldn’t it be a great idea?

For my two nieces, I made journals from composition books.  I created the covers with a digital scrapbook kit and glued them on.  I also made photo albums to match. I got lip glosses, nail polishes and some other little fun goodies and added them into the bag.

For my nephew, I got him a collection of Cars’ goodies with a book about “Big Brothers”.  I added a disposable camera so he can take his own pictures of his new baby brother and a photo album to put them into (see main picture at the beginning of this post).

There is SO MUCH you can do with these Big Brother/Big Sister gift bags.  After I attended the showers (my nieces and nephew LOVED their gifts),  I came across a book called, The Big Sibling Book: Babies First Year According To ME .  This book would have been perfect for my gift bags!

Have you given any Big Brother/Big Sister gifts?
If so, I would love to hear about them.

  Have a great week everyone!
Thanks Mandy for having me.

A Crafty Soiree

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Summer, Summer, Go Away!

Happy Friday everyone!

I’ve had several people say to me, “Are you ‘over’ your blog?”  I have to admit that I have not been posting as much the last few months.  First, I have to say, “No, I’m not ‘over’ the blog”.  Really, I’m not.

When I started the blog (it’s been over a year now) I didn’t have a lot going on in my life (retired mother of adult children) and my grandchildren did not live in town at the time.  I was looking for a way to fill my time and I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures of my projects and sharing with my friends, so why not share them on a blog?

Since my grandchildren have moved to Fresno, my life has become very full!  My husband had to listen to me for a few years whine and say, “I just want our children to be little again and do it all over.”  God heard my whining because now I have my adorable, sweet grandson’s living less than 5 miles away from us and I get a “do over”!!! Life is good and I am blessed.

My other issue (well I have a few)…. I hate the heat.  I like to be outside in the crisp fall air and work on my projects.  It gets so hot here in the valley, that it really makes it tough to paint.  Unfortunately, I don’t have a basement (darn) or a cool garage.  I’m ready to clear out our dining room, lay down the tarps and start painting!!!!  PLUS, I’ve been having sciatica pain, which for me, is caused by too much sitting.  I’ve written several posts standing up!

I have completed a few projects, but one isn’t quite finished (my part of the project is).  I’m waiting for the other part of the project to be finished by someone else before I can take a picture and share with you all.

My kitchen cabinets are coming along.  It has been more work than I expected.  I wanted to take a picture and share with all of you after I found the hardware… but I can’t find anything that I like.  So, I will definitely take a picture (without hardware) and show them to you sometime early next week.

The Linky Party “Turning the Daunting Into the Do-able” will be returning Tuesday, September 4th! I’ll send out a reminder.

Last week 2 of my grandson’s started school.  I was thrilled to get to see them before they left and wish them a great day!

Alex started 5th grade at a new school and he loves it!
Tracie is relieved.  Changes are scary for a lot of kids and Alex has adjusted nicely.

Ty started Pre-K and is loving it!
He goes Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and complains because he wants to go every day!
His teacher says, “He is very enthusiastic”.

Here I am with the boys.  Logan on the left and Ty on the right.
Ty had a great day at school!
I’m so thankful I get to be part of it.
I don’t want to miss out on a single thing!

Tomorrow I’m finishing up the cabinets and Brandon and my hubby are putting in my baseboards that have needed to be done for over 2 years!!!!

I’m a very patient woman :-).

I hope that everyone has a fabulous weekend!


A New Grandson!

I hope that everyone had a fabulous weekend!

I went with my husband for a work event in Dana Point (close to Laguna and Newport Beach) last week.

It was so nice to escape the 100+ degree weather.

I’m praying summer will be over with VERY soon.

My daughter-in-law was due with our 6th grandson on Sept. 7.  We received a text from our son on Tuesday, that Karen had been admitted to the hospital and she would be having the baby sooner than we thought.

Wednesday, we left for Dana Point, and we anxiously awaited for the call that our grandson had been born.  Little did we know that we would be within a 1/2 an hour drive away from Long Beach when our grandson was born!

Owen Edward Walter was born on
August 15, 2012 at 9:15 a.m.
6 lbs. 10 oz. 20 inches long

Friday we stopped at the hospital to meet this little guy.

Big Brother, Connor was very happy to meet his new baby brother.

Mom and baby are doing great and and Connor is delighted to have his new baby brother at home.

I can’t wait for my next visit to see Owen and Connor!

It’s going to be VERY soon :-).



Back To School Lunch Ideas and a Back To School Cash Giveaway

My boys have less than a week  before they head back to school!

I can’t believe the summer flew by so quickly.  This year, I am determined to do something special for the boys’ lunches.   Have you seen all of those amazing Bento Box lunches on people’s blogs???? AMAZING!!!!  I told my husband the other night, “I don’t know how some of these mom’s find the time to make such amazing lunches for their kids every day!” and then I added, ” I could do that too if I only had one child.”    Well, let me just tell you…. I put my foot in my mouth BIG TIME because one (and I’m sure there are many) of the Mom’s had 6 kids!!!!!   So, no more excuses for me.  If a Mom of 6 kids can make one of these adorable lunches for their kids… there are no more excuses for me… If she can do it, so can I!  🙂

Here are a few lunches that have inspired me.  These people are so amazing and creative!!!!!!!!!!!!


1.  Mothering Corner – Too cute.  She has Woody too!

2.  Susan Yuen – This lady is a genius!!!! She has the most amazing Phineas and Ferb and Perry the Platypus.  She makes it look so easy!  Everything she does is amazing!

3.  Lunch Box Awesome – This is another amazing website.  Lots of Disney characters.

4.  Family Go – My boys would LOVE this one!

5.  Funky Lunch Box – Check out the great tutorial she has to make your own Hello Kitty.

6.  My Meal Box – Another amazing site.  LOVE Snow White.

7.  Parenting – Mac-n-Cheese lion.  YUM!

Are you feeling inspired to make your child(ren) a snazzy lunch?  I’m hoping a lunch like one of the inspirations above will have my boys eating every single bite that I painstakingly created for them.  I’m also hoping they think their Mom is pretty cool for making such an amazing lunch!

Happy back to school!

Thanks Mandy for having me!!!

If you would like to enter the $160 cash/Amazon Gift Giveaway…


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Back To School Cash Giveaway

To celebrate back to school time, several other bloggers and myself have teamed up to offer you this Back to School Cash Giveaway, and one reader will win a BIG prize: $160 in PayPal cash or Amazon gift card! Brought to you by these wonderful bloggers who love their readers:

Inspired By Family Magazine
Tutus and Tea Parties

Ducks in a Row
Narrow Paths to High Places
To the Moon and Back
Rae Gun Ramblings
Life with Lovebugs
1929 Charmer
Blessed Beyond a Doubt
Love Play Learn
French Press
Smiling Like Sunshine
Cheap Crafty Momma
Covered in Grace
Lessons Learnt Journal
Teach Beside Me
Mrs. Hines Class
Junk in their Trunk
Playdough to Plato
Boy Mama Teacher Mama

We are so excited to bless someone with this wonderful Cash Giveaway!   We appreciate you and every second you have spent visiting our blogs.

Make sure you stop by Inspired by Family for the Back to School Series, featuring some of the lovely bloggers mentioned above that will be covering lots of great topics, recipes and crafts!

Are you ready to win?

To submit your entry to win, use the rafflecopter form below. There are many blogs you can “like” or follow to gain entries, and you can take your time doing it. Have fun! Basically, this is the process but you can find the Official Rules here :

    • All mandatory entries will be verified so make sure you do the mandatory entries first using Rafflecopter.
    • It’s open to everyone (not minors) and one winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive $160 in PayPal cash or Amazon giftcard.
    • The winner’s name will be displayed on this post after the giveaway ends.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I’d love it if you left me a comment letting me know that you entered!


Tracie will be here on Thursday showing you some great ideas for
back to school lunches.
Hope you stop by.

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Banana Split Pudding Cake


Anyone who knows me, knows that I LOVE dessert!

One of my favorite summer time desserts is a Banana Split!

Love them!!

I usually make and bring dessert for our Sunday Family BBQ.  Since we were eating outside by the pool and it was 108 degrees, I decided we needed something cool and refreshing (I wanted to do something besides ice cream).   I remembered seeing a Banana Split Cake made by Kraft.  I found the recipe on line and decided to tweak it just a bit…

I came up with this wonderful summery dessert that I call…

“Banana Split Pudding Cake”

Here are the ingredients you will need:

For the crust:

1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup melted butter
¼ cup sugar

Mix and press onto the bottom of a 13 x 9 pan.
Freeze for 15 minutes.

 Layer 1:
(2) 8 oz. packages of softened cream cheese (room temperature)
3/4 cup of sugar
Beat the cream cheese and sugar until well blended.
Spread over cooled crust.

Layer 2:
20 oz. can of crushed pineapple, drained

Layer 3:
4 sliced bananas

 Layer 4:

2 (3.4 oz. each) JELL-O Vanilla Instant Pudding
2 cups cold milk
Mix until blended.

1 cup of Cool Whip
Fold into pudding and spread pudding mixture on top of the banana layer.

Layer 5:
Spread remaining Cool Whip onto the pudding/Cool Whip mixture

Refrigerate for 6 hours


2 containers of fresh, sliced strawberries
Hershey’s chocolate sauce drizzled on the top


I wanted to top it with a shaved Hershey’s chocolate bar, but everyone was ready to dive into it and I forgot! 🙂

Everyone at the BBQ loved my Banana Split Pudding Cake… even my kids!

Thanks Mandy for having me!!!

A Crafty Soiree


How To Line Your Drawers With Linoleum Squares

Wondering where I’ve been?

Life has been a bit crazy here in the Walter Household!

A GOOD kind of crazy!

First, I have to say I LOVE HAVING MY GRANDCHILDREN IN TOWN!!! It is the BEST and I feel so BLESSED!!!  I must be driving my step-daughter crazy, because I want to see them every day! 🙂

I’m still plugging away on my cabinets.  Usually, when I begin a project, I drive myself crazy (and my hubby) because I can’t do anything else or think of anything else until the project is finished!  I’m working on that “all or nothing” quirky part of my personality :-).  So instead of feeling the need to finish up the cabinets, I have been doing other projects too, which I will be showing you soon.

Today, I want to show you how I’m lining my kitchen cabinets.  I’ve always used contact paper in the past, but this time around I’m using 12×12 Linoleum Squares that are super sticky on the back.

I found these at Home Depot on Sale for $15 a box.  I got the cheapest I could find.  I figured it didn’t have to be too durable since we won’t be walking on them.

First step is to make sure that your drawers are clean.  I brushed out the corners and went along the inside edges with a clean paint brush.

Then, I used my hand vacuum cleaner.

I measured my drawer (the first square is easy because you don’t have to cut it) and marked my linoleum square.

Using a straight edge ruler, I cut the linoleum with a straight edge knife (a linoleum knife would work well also).  I found that if I put the cutting board on the ground and cut the linoleum, I was able to apply more pressure.

The great thing about these squares (I found out after about the 3rd cut), is you don’t have to apply too much pressure because once the square is scored with the blade, it literally “breaks” right on your scored line!

Here is my finished drawer!

I chose this style of linoleum because it was the cheapest.  In hindsight, I wouldn’t choose an obvious pattern like the pergo style – made me crazy trying to match it!  I’m thrilled to have found a covering for my drawers that is durable and easy to clean.

Be sure you stop back by on Thursday.  Tracie has an amazing dessert that she will be sharing.  She made it for us last weekend… it was delicious!