Friday, March 26, 2010

I was almost a swing set snob

I have two small children. I have 2 small children that would live outside if I let them. (The oldest won't even come inside to go you see what I mean.)

I am afraid that we have outgrown our little toddler plastic swing slide combo. It is time for the big kid swing set. During the summer, we spend the majority of our time outdoors so we have been on the lookout for the deals.

I use the term "deals" lightly.

People.....swings are expensive. Even the cheap ones are expensive! This left us in a quandary. My hubs and I even went swing set shopping.....on our date night. Now, that is hardcore.

So we found one at a popular children's store. It was $599 and it was on sale for $499. If we would open a charge, we would save another $80...bring the fabulous swing set to a measly $420. What a deal.....NOT.

We said we would think about it but it never quite set right with us. However, what was our alternative..really? It seems to be just as expensive at Wal-Mart or K-mart and don't even get me started on how expensive the ones that you build yourself...GEESH.

My hubby in his infinite wisdom decided to post about it on his fishing and work web-site.

Y'all......we have swing sets coming out of the woodwork. We went to visit one swing set that was the exact one we were looking for in the yard of one of my hubbies friends. It was in awesome condition and the only thing it needed was re-stained. Ours for $75. Another one is saying that we could have it for free if we would come and take it apart and haul it away.

I am not talking junk here either. These are quality four swing, slide, rock wall, fort, wooden swing sets that the kids are either bored with or the parents want to re-claim their yard.

They say confession is good for the soul, so I thought I would keep it real. I snubbed the idea at first. I didn't want a used swing set. My hubbie very carefully asked me "why?". You know what? I didn't have a good answer. If the swing set is sound, been taken care of and in good shape what is my problem? I came up with one answer.


We have been taught...conditioned, that we need the best, we need it brand spankin new and we need it now. This is so off the mark. This is the worst sort of entitlement, isn't it? We take our kids to the park and they have a ball on those swing sets. (How many kids has played on those? hmmmm) It humbled me in my shoes.

So I thought I would share our journey to maybe help some of you swing set hunters that are in our same situation! Here are some of the areas where we had our best luck with the Swing set mission.

*Ask Co-workers

*Tell Friends

*Post on any message boards that are in your area or that you frequent

*Place an ad on Craig's list or E-bay (Although you have to be careful of fraud situations)

*Place an ad at church /moms groups

*Look in the paper

*Ask your family and friends to put the word out at their places of employment.

Hope this helps!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Recipe for Resurrection Rolls

I walked into my son's preschool class and saw that they were making this very simple version of Resurrection rolls and liked them so much, I thought that I would share!

This is a great physical reminder that the tomb is empty!!! Happy Baking Y'all!

1 (10 ounce) can refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
8 large marshmallows
1/4 cup melted butter
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons white sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Lightly grease a baking sheet.

Separate crescent rolls into individual triangles.

In a small bowl, mix together cinnamon and sugar.

Dip a marshmallow into melted butter, then roll in sugar mixture. Place marshmallow into the center of a dough triangle. Carefully wrap the dough around the marshmallow. Pinch the seams together tightly to seal in marshmallow as it melts. Place on a baking sheet. Repeat.

Bake in a preheated oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Mama Knows Best: Helpful tips

We as mamas have to be innovative and thrifty all in the same beat. Some how we find new ways of doing things that save us money, time and maybe if we are really blessed.... sanity!

Wow! I have not done a Mama knows best in...well ....forever! My BFF Monica sent me these helpful hints in an e-mail and I found it quite interesting!! Some tricks I have used and some I still want to try so let me know if any of these have worked (or not) for you!

**Take your bananas apart when you get home from the store. If you leave them connected at the stem, they ripen faster..

**Peppers with 3 bumps on the bottom are sweeter and better for eating. Peppers with 4 bumps on the bottom are firmer and better for cooking.

**Add a teaspoon of water when frying ground beef. It will help pull the grease away from the meat while cooking.

**To really make scrambled eggs or omelets rich add a couple of Spoonfuls of sour cream, cream cheese, or heavy cream in and then beat them up.

**For a cool brownie treat, make brownies as directed. Melt Andes mints in double broiler and pour over warm brownies. Let set for a wonderful minty frosting.

**Reheat Pizza Heat up leftover pizza in a nonstick skillet on top of the stove, set heat to med-low and heat till warm. This keeps the crust crispy. No soggy micro pizza. I saw this on the cooking channel and it really works.

**Easy Deviled Eggs Put cooked egg yolks in a zip lock bag. Seal, mash till they are all broken up. Add remainder of ingredients, reseal, keep mashing it up mixing thoroughly, cut the tip of the baggy, squeeze mixture into egg. Just throw bag away when done easy clean up.

**Expanding Frosting When you buy a container of cake frosting from the store, whip it with your mixer for a few minutes. You can double it in size. You get to frost more cake/cupcakes with the same amount. You also eat less sugar and calories per serving.

**Reheating refrigerated bread To warm biscuits, pancakes, or muffins that were refrigerated, place them in A microwave with a cup of water. The increased moisture will keep the food Moist and help it reheat faster.

**Broken Glass Use a wet cotton ball or Q-tip t o pick up the small shards of glass you can't see easily.

**No More Mosquitoes- Place a dryer sheet in your pocket. It will keep the mosquitoes away.

** Squirrel Away!
To keep squirrels from eating your plants, sprinkle your plants with cayenne pepper. The cayenne pepper doesn't hurt the plant and the squirrels won't come near it.

** Measuring Cups Before you pour sticky substances into a measuring cup, fill with hot water. Dump out the hot water, but don't dry cup. Next, add your ingredient, such As peanut butter, and watch how easily it comes right out.

** Re opening envelopes If you seal an envelope and then realize you forgot to include something inside, just place your sealed envelope in the freezer for an hour or two. Viola! It unseals easily.

**Conditioner Use your hair conditioner to shave your legs. It's cheaper than shaving cream and leaves your legs really smooth. It's also a great way to use up the conditioner you bought but didn't like when you tried it in your hair.

**Goodbye Fruit Flies To get rid of pesky fruit flies, take a small glass, fill it 1/2' with Apple Cider Vinegar and 2 drops of dish washing liquid; mix well. You will find those flies drawn to the cup an d gone forever!

**Get Rid of Ants Put small piles of cornmeal where you see ants. They eat it, take it 'home,' can't digest it so it kills them. It may take a week or so, especially if it rains, but it works and you don't have the worry about pets or small children being harmed!

Do you have a money/time/sanity tip to share? E-mail me at