Mini Pizzas

In February, my MOPs group got the kids together to exchange valentines and make pizza. The ladies that arranged everything used mini biscuits for the dough (already in perfect portions or each child.) I’ve been wanting to try this recipe for a while, but everything lined up to do it tonight. I already had most of the ingredients. I picked up the biscuits at the store-on sale 10 for $10…Score!

This recipe is EASY…great for little hands! My kids, especially the girls, love to help cook! Just grab pizza sauce, shredded cheese, and any toppings you want. Spread out the mini biscuits on a greased baking sheet and top to your liking. Use the baking instructions on the biscuit packaging. Ours was 400 degrees for 8 minutes.

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Mini pizzas were a hit!

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Roly Poly Magic

Roly Poly’s are magic. They have always fascinated my children. This post from July 2010 was fun to look back on when my kids were 4,3, and 1:

While it was still cool earlier this month, we found the best place around our house to hunt for roly polys. The kids had a great time catching them and making an “aquarium” (as Ellie called it) to watch them. (By the way, roly polys are pretty quick, so we had to stay on your toes to catch one.) Yet another great way to have an inexpensive summer activity!



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Okay, I think this is the teacher in me, but for any of you who are interested, here are some really cool facts about roly polys:

ROLY POLYs-
*live under rocks and logs and roll into a ball when disturbed.
*go by many names including roly-poly bugs, pillbugs, woodlice, tiggy-hogs, parson-pigs and by their scientific name, Armadillidium vulgare.
*are important for their part in decomposition, but they are not bugs. They are crustaceans. They are in the isopod family (same pod or foot) and have seven pairs of legs that are all similar in size and shape.
*have simple eyes, three body parts, uropods, and a pair of prominent antennae, gills and lung like adaptations.
*need moisture to survive but cannot live submerged in water.

(Read more: Roly-Poly Bug Facts)

And here is proof just today, Sweet Tart at 3, that the magic lives on:

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Dot to Dot

One of my new favorite stores is the Dollar Tree. I am usually not a fan of cheap stuff. Typically the phrase, “you get what you pay for” is true. However, what if you want I give your kids an experience but can’t afford the best version of whatever it is ($6 vs. $15) you need? Would you rather have the cheaper version or nothing at all? The Dollar Tree has proved to be good for craft items, positive reinforcement, etc. I was excited to be able to get these markers for several fun activities I’m finding on Pinterest. {keyword search: dot marker activities, bingo markers, dot markers, etc.}. Lots and lots of dots…and potential.

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My Little Morning Helpers

When I was little, I had a security blanket. It was pink and so soft and, even, more importantly, my mom made it for me. Carrying it around made everything feel better. It enhanced my good times and comforted me in bad times. (Confession: it actually made it to college with me and into my first home with Aron after we got married. It met its untimely demise when our boxer chewed and shredded it to bits. I still have the tattered remains. I am realizing how strange that sounds as I type this…)

As an adult, I still have “security blankets” that I like to call “My Little Helpers” – just some things I put to work EVERY day without fail to make things a little more bearable and functional.

MY LITTLE HELPERS in the MORNING:

COFFEE in a CUTE MUG

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I usually make 4 cups of coffee, and drink a big mug in the morning. I take it with flavored cream, enough to make it tan and delicious!

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I LOVE Kahve coffee in House Blend. I’ve tried most of their coffee, but this is my favorite for the morning. It’s got the best flavor and one good mug is strong enough to give the pick me up I want. I also love Kahve because I order it online and it gets delivered straight to my door.

20130509-135925.jpg I always feel more confident and cozy if the mug I’m drinking out of is cute. My mug has to be big enough that my finger tips don’t touch when I clasp my hands around it. This one is from West Elm.

A SIMPLE SKIN CARE ROUTINE
I don’t put make up on my face every single morning, or even take a shower, but, like my mom taught me, I take care of my skin. My skin {hearts} ARTISTRY. I already use the Time Defiance stuff with the anti aging properties. I pamper my face, neck, and my eyes and it only takes 5 minutes.

Here’s my routine and, also… my morning face. These aren’t professional Before and After’s, the lighting isn’t the same in each picture (apologies to my fellow melancholy friends), but I’m pretty sure the results are clear, especially around the eyes and forehead. I always get a better start when I feel like I have a fresh face (and fresh breath.)

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AHHHH! This is my starting point. Gasp.

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This is after using the Time Defiance Cleanser. I also like following up with a toner. FRESH!

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This is where my face gets REAL happy! I dab some Lifting Eye Creme under my eyes with my ring finger. It really helps make those fine lines, dark circles, and puffiness settle down. I follow that with the Essentials Alpha Hydroxy Serum which exfoliates and smooths and gets my skin to the right texture if I want to use foundation. I think this makes the most dramatic difference in the whole routine and that’s why these are my two absolute favs.

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I always use a moisturizer or foundation with SPF in the morning. I have really dry skin and fair skin. This is the Time Defiance Day Time Creme.

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Just for balance’s sake, here is my face totally done with some concealer, tinted moisturizer, eyeshadow, mascara, and blush.

If I get a cute mug of good coffee and a fresh face in the morning, I feel so much better! Watch out World! Here I come!

{Most of these “good goods” are items that can be found in my online shop, http://www.hallteamsolutions.com. I used them and loved them even before I started selling them. I just made the decision to make some money from things I was already buying…I am excited about sharing them because they WORK and because helping people find products and services that they need has allowed me to be able to stay home as my kids grow up, a childhood dream/goal.}

Framed

I turned 25 for the 8th time at the end of April.  I’ve started noticing some changes in my body, mainly with my eyes: I’m not seeing distances clearly anymore.  I need “correction.”  I don’t like the idea of learning how to put in contacts everyday.  I think I want framed glasses.  I LOVE tortoise shell frames.  I found a fake pair of glasses in a style I think I’d like…and bought them…and wore them…in public.  (I just wanted to see what they’d feel like and if I’d want to wear them more than a day when I had a bunch of courage.)

This is so unlike me.  I used to care so much about what others, even strangers, thought of me. I’m changing as my years add up.  I’m not as hesitant anymore.

But seriously, what is it about these frames that make me want to take silly-faced selfies?

I sent some of these pics to my friends and said, “One step closer to realizing my dream of becoming a librarian…”  My sister said, “What are THOSE?”  I laughed so hard.

(I think they’re a too big, but I do like the style and color.)