July 3, 2014

Emergency Preparedness Kits

As I am typing this, Hurricane Arthur is making an impact on the eastern shore. Are you prepared? Are you evacuating? So you don't live on the east coast and aren't affected by Arthur, are you ready for the next one? Are you prepared to evacuate quickly if the need arises? 

It doesn’t matter where you live, you are susceptible to an earthquake, hurricane, snow storm, power outage, flood, etc. and any of these things could leave you and your family stranded at home for a few days without power or electricity or being forced to leave your home quickly during an evacuate order.

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Before talking about the emergency kit needed for the home, let's discuss the emergency kit everyone should have in their car at all times.  An emergency could happen while you are driving, so it is always a good idea to have a few essentials stored in a tub in your trunk that includes: a blanket, an extra pair of sneakers and socks (just in case you ladies are wearing heels or sandals and need to vacate your car and walk), a flashlight, a power flare, non-perishable snacks (nuts & granola bars maybe) and water.

If you are a pet owner, you should also have one emergency kit prepared for each of your animals containing items such as: a towel, food, water, and extra food dish, a leash, a toy, and medicine.  Keep the kit(s) stored next to your emergency home kit, so if you have to evacuate quickly you won't forget about your pets necessities too.

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For a personal home kit, it is recommended you have supplies stored in air-tight tubs or on shelves in your garage or basement. 

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Here are the items that should be in your kit, this list comes directly from FEMA

  • Three-day supply of non-perishable food.
  • Three-day supply of water – one gallon of water per person, per day.
  • Portable, battery-powered radio or television and extra batteries.
  • Flashlight and extra batteries.
  • First aid kit and manual.
  • Sanitation and hygiene items (moist towelettes and toilet paper).
  • Matches and waterproof container
  • Whistle
  • Extra clothing
  • Kitchen accessories and cooking utensils, including a can opener.
  • Photocopies of credit and identification cards.
  • Cash and coins.
  • Special needs items, such as prescription medications, eye glasses, contact lens solutions, and hearing aid batteries.
  • Items for infants, such as formula, diapers, bottles, and pacifiers.
  • Other items to meet your unique family needs.

Depending on your climate, this items might come in handy as well:

  • Jacket or coat.
  • Long pants & long sleeve shirts
  • Sturdy shoes.
  • Hat, mittens, and scarf.
  • Sleeping bag or warm blanket (per person)
  • Mosquito Spray
  • Sunscreen

As important as it is to have an emergency kit, don’t forget to do these things to maintain your kit:

  • Keep canned foods in a cool/dry place.
  • Store boxed food in tightly closed plastic or metal containers to protect from pests and to extend its shelf life.
  • Discard any canned good that becomes swollen, dented, or corroded.
  • Rotate your supplies to always keep the freshest things in the kit.
  • Change stored food and water supplies every six months. Be sure to write the date you store it on all containers.
  • Re-think your needs every year and update your kit as your family needs change.
  • Keep items in airtight plastic bags and put your entire disaster supplies kit in one or two easy-to-carry containers, such as an unused trashcan, camping backpack, or duffel bag.

Maybe you would like to build your family an Emergency Bucket Kit. I personally think this is a brilliant idea!

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Whatever you choose to do, don't wait until the last minute to begin preparation. We are already one month into hurricane season. Make sure you are ready to keep your family safe, no matter what sort of natural disaster you are being faced with. 

June 16, 2014

Pillowcase Dreams

What a busy weekend I had.......

We got to spend some time with Gretel on the open roads. Gretel is, for those who don't know, our recently purchased 1949 Chevy 3100 pickup truck. (I will have to do a story on her real soon.) Anyway, it was Father's Day on Sunday and after our morning church service, we relaxed at home for awhile before doing some work on Gretel. She has a good bit of restoration still to be done, but its exciting to drive down the road in her. No radio, no AIR, no electronics - just the open road and a really cool old truck!

On my quest to return to crafting (and blogging) I have been looking all over the internet - ok, Pinterest for the most part - to find fun things to work on and write about. So my newest fixation is pillowcases. I have a TON of these things in my house. With 5 beds, and a grandmother who enjoyed embroidering anything she could put in her hands - pillowcases are in abundance around our place. So why not put some of them to a different use.

Here are some of the ideas I found. Have you tried any of these? Have an idea of your own you want to share? Please let me know!! I will share some of my completed projects as soon as I get to them. :)

Have a Blessed Week!

June 13, 2014

20+ Ways To Use Your Pool Noodle

The amazingly fun Pool Noodle has made its 2014 appearance!

I have located over 20 fun & unique uses for those noodles that I can’t wait to try and you won’t want to miss!! Please, tell me what you think. Do you have a fun idea that you would like everyone to see? If so, please share it with me and I will be happy to add it in!

Happy Noodling! 

June 12, 2014

DIY Easy Pillows

Have sewing machine, will use it! Yeap, that's me folks. But where or when will I ever find the time? Between working a 40+ hour week in the office, household & wifey duties, running around with a young adult preparing for college, and 3 younger children keeping me hopping - how exactly does one find the time to be crafty?

If you have a secret, please let me know; but, in the interim I have located some pretty nifty "Easy Sew/No Sew Pillows" that I am itching to try out. I think these will all make adorable accent pillows for the dorm room we will be decorating in just a few months. 

June 11, 2014

National Sweet Tea Day...

In honor of National Sweet Tea Day (yesterday, yes I realize I am a day late) I decided to share some of my favorite sweet tea recipes I have collected. Being from the South, we like - no we LOVE - our sweet tea!
Recently, we held our Annual Ladies Tea at church. I had a great time designing the centerpiece and table setting and it was a blessing to serve my friends and family at the table I hosted. A truly wonderful day of love & fellowship.

I called it "Shabby Chic"

Although it it was a miserably wet, rainy day here in South Louisiana, of which we are used to down here, it was a wonderful day of friends, family & community with over 125 ladies in attendance. We served a variety of teas; cold & hot, plain and flavored. Also on the menu were traditional scones, finger sandwiches (the walnut & grape chicken salad was to die for) and some fabulous desserts.

It's summertime...... and nothing says summer in South Louisiana like sweet tea!!

Try one. Try them all. Tell me what you think!
Blessings From the Deep South


June 10, 2014

Time to Listen Up

Land of the Free, Because of the Brave: Opposition to the Release of Gitmo Prisoners

During the final question and answer round for the Miss USA title, Miss Louisiana, Brittany Guidry, responded  to a question about the release of five Gitmo prisoners in return for suspected deserter Bowe Bergdahl: 

Q: In recent weeks the U.S. has released five detainees from Guantanamo in exchange for one U.S. soldier held captive in Afghanistan. The U.S. policy is to leave no soldier behind. Do you think it’s fair to sacrifice or swap lives in order to uphold this policy?

A: I am glad that we got our guy back, however I do not feel it is right that we subject ourselves to these acts of terrorism. I do agree with our guy being back, but however, I do not think we should subject ourselves.

Proud of my Louisiana Girl!!! Geaux Brittany!

Of course, Judge Jeanine Pirro doesn't do such a bad job herself!

America: Land of the Free, because of the Brave!

June 3, 2014

And the mom of the year award goes to......

I've done some pretty strange things in my life. Don't get me wrong, I am NOT in line for sainthood by ANY stretch of the imagination, my husband & I fall short ALL the time in our parenting decisions and our skills are often those of first time parents of 6 children (two whom are grown with their own children). BUT, sometimes you just have to shake your head and think "What were they thinking?"

A Tennessee woman has set the Internet on fire when photos of her walk down the aisle at her wedding started spreading . In an effort to make her newborn baby part of her wedding day, Shona Carter-Brooks tied her 1-month-old daughter, Aubrey, to the back of her dress and dragged her down the aisle. It is actually a little less brutal than it sounds, as you can see in the photo above, but still…why?!

I'm all for including your children in your special day, and I'm also all for doing whatever you want when it comes to your wedding, because it is your wedding. But this is obviously something that Shona and her husband, Johnathancould have & SHOULD have taken a second to think about before deciding that yeah, this would be special and not at all hazardous or upsetting for guest.


While the couple’s friends and family have jumped to support their decision to trail their baby behind them in the ceremony, others have called for Child Protective Services to become involved— and honestly, I can’t say I blame them. There was no reason to exclude the baby from the ceremony, but putting her on the train puts her in harm’s way—all it would take is someone to trip or stumble, and poor defenseless baby would have been stepped on and seriously hurt or worse! 

To each their own, I guess, and I thank God I've never done something to be publicly ridiculed for with my children, but here are a couple other ways she could have included her baby into her special day:

1. Carried her down the aisle
2. Pushed her in a stroller down the aisle
3. Held her during the ceremony
4. Have her husband hold the baby as they both walked down the aisle
5. Had her pulled down the aisle in a buggy/wagon
6. Literally anything else besides tying a 1-month-old to the back of a wedding dress and dragging her down the aisle
If your children were at included in your wedding ceremony, how did you include them in the festivities? Would you ever consider something as extreme as carrying your baby in your bridal train?
I welcome your comments, but please be tasteful!

February 3, 2014

Easy Homemade Marshmallow Cream "Fluff"

Making your own homemade Marshmallow Cream "Fluff" is simple! The light, fluffiness is delicious when you pair it up with peanut butter or spread it over your favorite dessert.

Ingredients Needed:
3 egg whites
2 c. light corn syrup
1/2 tsp. salt
2 c. sifted confectioners' sugar
1 T. vanilla extract

Using an electric mixer, in a large mixing bowl, combine egg whites, corn syrup, and salt. Beat for approximately 10 minutes on medium-high until thick. Reduce speed of mixer to low and gradually add the confectioners' sugar until completely mixed. Then add the vanilla extract and beat until well blended. 

Yields approx: 2 quarts

Storage: Store covered, in plastic container in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Freeze for up to 2 months.

 Linked With:
Savvy Southern Style
Fluster Buster

January 22, 2014

Personal Responsibility In Our Children

I've been thinking more and more recently about my children being "self-sufficient" & "personally responsible" adults in life. Scary, I know, considering Alyssa is 18 yrs old and I probably should have been thinking about this much earlier than now. But, alas, I haven't!

A series of events have lead to this post, the most recent being yesterday:

While I was working Alyssa (my oldest daughter) text me from school saying that she was hungry. "OK?" I thought. I respond "I'm working". She then proceeds to whine *yes, I could hear the whine through the text* about how she had been up since 6:00am, forgot her lunch, it was now 4:00pm and she wouldn't be done with practice until 7:30pm and she was *starving*.
My first thought was that of frustration. I mean seriously?!?! Is she for real? Did she really go ALL DAY without eating anything and now expects to have the energy to practice {colorguard}.... oh AND expects ME to stop working to bring it to her?
{I know the following should have been my first thought, but it wasn't, so sue me!}
My second thought was concern; after all, she IS a diabetic. Going all day without eating isn't good for anyone, but it especially isn't good for a diabetic. The horror of a low blood sugar then comes to mind.
But, I think the biggest thought was "Where is your personal responsibility?" and I responded as such! {I am a serious contender for mother of the year right now} "You should have planned ahead and packed your lunch and some snacks. You are 18, Alyssa! What are you going to do when you are on a college campus next year and you don't have mom to run something to you?" Her response you ask? "I dunno!"
Agghhhhh!!!!! I HAVE CREATED A LITTLE MONSTER! Now I do have to say, Alyssa is GENERALLY a pretty responsible & mature kid. She is actively involved with school, church, and her community. She maintains good grades, is Captain of the Rifle team for colorguard, coaches cheerleading, works with special needs children, helps me with her siblings, etc., etc. etc. She has been an active participant and day to day giver of her medical care for the past 10 years. But all of the sudden a light bulb went off for me......
So much of her "responsibility" is because MOM keeps her on schedule and gives her reminders. *oh, snap* Is she really going to be a self-sufficient adult? Is she going to "survive" without mom there to keep her on track? Well, duh, I KNOW she will... but could I have prepared her better? I still have 7 months before she leaves for college. It's crunch time!!
What about you? How have you prepared your children to leave the nest and fly on their own? HELP!

Linked To:
Raising Arrows, Easy Life, Losing My Gut, Turnips 2 Tangerines, Scrumptilicious 4 You, From My Front Porch to Yours, Sweet Haute

January 4, 2014

Two weeks go by fast

Its been two weeks since my last post. The holidays were just busy busy for our family. So a quick post now to share what "Santa" brought me.


Not one but TWO new Vera Bradley bags. Yes, I was a good girl this year!

Fitbit is amazing! I have several friends using this awesome fitness technology, and I must admit, I was jealous. Its just COOL! Sooo... this was my Christmas present to myself too! In addition to using my Fitbit now, I am syncing it with the My Fitness Pal app on my iPhone & iPad that I have been using for awhile now. At about $99, it was a great investment into my health and well-being. 

While there is a lot I like about the Fitbit Flex, I would have to say that the thing that has been the most intriguing is my sleep pattern! WOW.... no wonder I am tired all the time. This is my sleep log from last night:

Here is what the Fitbit website has to say about the Fitbit Flex that I got:

Flex™ Wireless
Activity + Sleep Wristband

  • Tracks steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes.
  • LED lights show progress against your goal.
  • Monitors your sleep and wakes you with a silent alarm.
  • Wear all day and night, even in the shower.
  • Includes tracker, small and large wristbands, charging cable and wireless sync dongle.
Blessings from the Deep South!