Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Bulk Spices meet Mini Containers

Yesterday, as I ran my errands, I went to my favorite local health food store, Chuck's Produce, and they had their bulk spices on sale for 30% off. I jumped at the opportunity and stocked up on a few spices that I am out off. I love getting my spices this way because most spices I don't use up a whole bottle worth before the suggested throw out time. This Food Network article states pre-ground spices should be replaced about every six months, which is what I try to stick to. 

Spices hand bagged from the bulk section of my local grocery store. 
 My next stop was the dollar store. I was looking for party supplies when I spotted this package of ten mini storage containers. Light bulb moment! Before, I have kept my spices in the bags I bought them in but they lose their flavor faster because the bags are not air tight. The spices smell up my cupboard which is also no good but these.... These are perfect! Small, clear, and stackable so they don't take up too much room. 
Showing their size compared to a normal size spice bottle.

First step before adding the spices, hand wash and dry all the containers. Then, I transferred all the spices from the bags to the containers. I hand wrote the labels and taped them to the front as I went along. (If I only had a label gun, the things I could do!) I put them in the cupboard and I am so happy how little of space they take and how perfectly easy they are to read and find, I think I will be switching most of my spices to these wonderful little containers. Oh, the possibilities  
So, what was going to be just another day of errands, turned into a wonderfully organized spice cabinet update. I can't wait to get to cooking something spice-tacular! I wonder what else I could organize with these great little containers.....

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Random Photo: The Man on the Balcony


As my mom and I wandered the streets of Montmartre in a Sunday afternoon in Paris, I saw this man on a balcony talking on the phone. It was a beautiful and intriguing sight to me. I secretly snapped a photo of this mysterious and wonderful scene. Who is he talking to? What are they talking about? Some exciting adventure they are going on....... Making dinner plans with his loved one....... Offering advice to a hurting friend...... or, and the more probable one of all, Mundane, everyday business. Whatever the conversation subject, I love photos like this that get the imagination going. One click saved this moment in time that will forever make me wonder, who is this mysterious man on the balcony and what was he conversing about? 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Praying for the Lead

What is on my mind today? Leadership
Define what a leader is? ~ A leader is a person who rules, guides, or inspires others; head. 
That is a BIG job, an important job. 
And if someone is going to lead my life direction, I want to make sure I've got the right person on the job. Really, there is only one person for that job in my life. Jesus Christ. He is the head of this house. He is who rules over this persons life. He guides it and is what inspires me. Jesus said to his disciples, "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 25 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. 26 What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?27 For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done." (Matthew 16:24-27)

My life is his. My soul is his. And on a day like today, when the 'leader of the free world' is sworn into office, I am going to pray that our leader chooses God's will for his life. I am going to pray that our leader chooses Jesus Christ to guide him and to be the head of his house. 

Today, I am praying about leadership. What are you praying about today?

Friday, January 18, 2013

Small Business Review ~ 2nd Bloom

This year I am going to promote one local small business a month. I love checking out new businesses and supporting our local economy. I hope that you enjoy hearing about these local small businesses and that it encourages you to think twice about where you spend your hard earned dollars. Why am I doing this? Because these entrepreneurs are pouring their hearts and souls, time and energy, dreams and ambitions, into these wonderful little businesses to hopefully provide for their families while doing something they enjoy. Let's help them provide for their families and our local economy and at the same time, fulfill their dreams that give us a wonderful (and sometimes unique) shopping experience.    

 For my first small business review, I picked 2nd Bloom. I found this wonderful little business at the Camas Vintage Street Faire last summer. Located in downtown Vancouver, this shop is open Tues.-Sat. They have gifts that are new and vintage in styles that are shabby chic, modern, country and more. I loved the variety of gifts that they sell. I came home with a beautiful necklace and a set of eight vintage looking, french inspired folders, all of which I absolutely love! The ladies are so sweet and passionate about what they are doing. It was a great shopping experience and I look forward to going back. To learn more about 2nd Bloom and keep up on all their news and sale events, go check out and like their Facebook page here.


One thing I noticed throughout this shop was sets of wings. Small sets; large sets; framed sets. They are beautiful and inspiring to look at. I don't know if they have a special meaning to the ladies of 2nd Bloom but I found this quote and thought it fitting. It takes hard work and courage to give your dreams wings and I want to help them (and all the other entrepreneurs) in make their dreams  S O A R.  

“If you were born without wings, do nothing to prevent them from growing.”  ― Coco Chanel

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Flight of Dreams

D R E A M  B I G

let those dreams  
T A K E  F L I G H T

E N J O Y  the  R I D E 


T R E A S U R E  the  V I E W

S H A R E  your  E X P E R I E N C E 

R E P E A T 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Picture Perfect Frame

I made this a while back for a baby shower gift. It was my first picture frame project and I was a little nervous to say the least. I asked my friend what the nursery colors were going to be and went to the craft store. I picked up a plain picture frame and some super cute paper. Then, I painted the back white and, after that was dry, I mod podged the paper to the front. Lastly, before wrapping it, I took a picture with my phone and got a second opinion from a mutual friend. She liked it, I was happy with it and it will hopefully be a gift they will treasure. 

Maybe this will get your creative juices flowing......

Monday, January 14, 2013

Crimson and White

dishes to wash

laundry to fold

floors to vacuum

As I flutter about my home, I glance out the window to see an unexpected site. I decide to go outside and take a few minutes to take it in. It falls, silently and gracefully, from the pale gray sky. Floating slowly down to earth, it lands on my robe. I take in the wondrous intricacies of this creation. It is pure and white; it is snow. And as it melts into a perfectly round sphere, I notice the starkness of my scarlet robe against it. And God reminds me.....  

Isaiah 1:18

“Come now, let us settle the matter,”

    says the Lord.
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
    they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red as crimson,
    they shall be like wool.

I thank God for this moment and go back inside to once again flutter about. Joy has come to me today in the form of snow. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year Goals in One Word: Prepared

A friend of mine asked her Facebook friends to describe their goals for the new year in one word. For me, that word is Prepared. I had already been working on my goals list for 2013 before she posted the question. So when it was asked, I read through my list and that is the word that came to mind. I need to be more Prepared
For what, you ask? What ever might come. 
There has been a lot that has happened the last couple of months that has me thinking about if I am prepared for similar situations. Hurricane Sandy. Long black outs. Unexpected and sometimes extreme weather conditions. Shootings. Economic conditions. For me, to be prepared for these and other happenings that might come our way that we cannot foresee, I want to cover the bases. 
First, prepare the soul. Prepare the mind. This, for me, means getting back to the Word of God. Make it more a daily part of my life and my families. I am saved. I know where I am going when I die. What I want to carry more of with me everyday is how He says to handle what ever comes our way, good and/or bad. 
A bright new year is here!
Second, prepare my home life. As 
many have said as did the wife of one of my pastors, "Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without." Declutter. Simplify. Waste not. Make more of the home space I am given: gardening, crafting, teaching my kids, cooking. Get the household debt down. Use more cash. Be more thrifty. Also, as a part of preparing the home, stock up on first aid and survival, self sufficiency gear. There seemed to be too many that weren't very prepared for all the different weather conditions and help was taking too long to get to people in some cases. I am taking that as a lesson to us that we need to be better prepared to fend for ourselves and not so dependent on help coming or the stores having enough for everyone.  
Last, prepare my body. Get physically fit. Walk more. Jog more. Play more. Use the resources available to workout from home. Eat less junk and 'boxed' foods and more from scratch, hand made, fresh foods. Take more vitamins. Learn more about essential oils and herbs; natural remedies. Learn to be more aware of my surroundings and the people around me. Learn how to protect myself and my kids if the occasion should arise that I might have to. 

Well, there it all is. It might seem like a lot but, really, when it is written down as a check list, it isn't a lot. A check list should have details under each category so the bigger goals are broken down to be more manageable and attainable. I like a check list, no matter how long, because I can choose one item a day or five, depending on how I am feeling, and mark it off when it is accomplished. Then, as more and more are marked off, I can look at how far I have come. I have proof that I am moving in the direction I wanted to. And, as I think of more, I add them. Just more that can be accomplished. 

So what do you want to accomplish this new year? What one word sums up your goals? I wish you luck in your adventures this year! I look forward to sharing mine with you.