Monthly Archives: February 2012

Button Bracelet

Before I get into how to make this really cute bracelet I have to give some major props to Jill at Green Bean Gardens for taking some great pictures of our project! Maybe I will have her take photographs for all of my blog posts! We had a lot of fun making these bracelets so I’ll take you through how to make one of your own. ¬†The original DIY is here.

Supplies you’ll need:

  • Buttons and beads
  • Cord (we used leather, at least to start out with)
  • Patience ūüôā

The first thing you need to do is pick out the buttons you’d like to use and lay them out. ¬†We learned a few things with this…bigger buttons need more cord and make sure that the button holes are big enough for the cording to fit through (twice). ¬†If you keep these two things in mind you’ll have a much easier time making the bracelet.

The instructions for the original bracelet said to cut the cord to 18″ but we realized (after the fact) that you really need more like 24-26″. ¬†You will fold your piece of cord in half and tie a knot in the folded end, big enough for the last button to fit through (this will be your clasp).

Now you start threading your buttons on to the cord. ¬†If you already noticed you’ll see that I changed cords halfway through (in the picture above I’m using pearl cotton). ¬†The first bracelet I made was too short so I had to start over (hence the 24-26″). ¬†For two-hole buttons you put one thread up through each hole and then down the opposite. ¬†It might be hard to see in the picture but I know you can figure it out! ¬†If your buttons have four holes simply criss-cross the cording coming up from the bottom and then down through the top (it will make an x). ¬†As you can see below I added some beads to mine as well.

Something to keep in mind as you are threading your buttons is that they spread out once you put it on your wrist so if they seem too scrunched together try putting it on…it will look very different. ¬†Most of all have fun and get creative!


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Snack Time!

I have really enjoyed finding new and healthy snack options via Pinterest.  These are a few that have become staples in our pantry and are snacks that I have no problem giving Dieter on a regular basis.

Oatmeal Cookies

I made these just this weekend and they are delicious! ¬†If you’re looking for a sugary sweet cookie this really doesn’t fit the bill but I think you should still check it out. ¬†They are wheat-, egg-, sugar, and dairy-free. ¬†You could eat them for breakfast or as a quick and filling snack and there is a lot of room for the addition of your own ingredients. ¬†I didn’t have coconut so I just added an extra cup of rolled oats. ¬†And as another note I used a 2 1/2 inch biscuit cutter as a form to make the cookies.


Crunchy Chickpeas

So I have a little disclaimer with this recipe. ¬†Make sure they don’t burn! ¬†Both times I’ve made this crunchy snack I’ve burnt about half of them so next time I will decrease the oven temperature to 400 degrees (from 450) and check them every 10-15 minutes. ¬†The first time I seasoned them with curry powder and they were pretty good but the second time I simply ground some sea salt onto them (along with the olive oil) and they were delicious! ¬†Dieter really likes these because they are so crunchy. ¬†I would definitely be careful with young children though since they could present a choking hazard.

“Wheat Thins”

After the first time making these I learned one thing…I need to double the recipe! ¬†They are a bit tedious with all the rolling out and cutting but I really think it’s worth it. ¬†They are much heartier than regular wheat thins plus they end up being a lot cheaper too. ¬†I add 2 tablespoons of whole flax seed to the dry ingredients for even more substance. ¬†These are always in our diaper bag as a handy snack for Dieter.

Apple chips

These apple chips were so simple to make! ¬†The only tricky part is cutting the apples thin enough if you don’t have a mandolin (which I don’t). ¬†All you do is cut the apples into 1/8th inch slices (don’t worry about peeling or coring) and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. ¬†You bake in a 200 degree oven for about three hours. ¬†You can check them periodically and take them out once they are crunchy. ¬†For a twist you can sprinkle them with cinnamon and sugar before baking them. ¬†Easy, cheap, and yummy!


Out and About: Lil’ Explorers at Como Zoo

Oh what fun we had at Como this Thursday!¬† They had a wonderful set-up in the visitor’s center that was all about birds.¬† They have a new theme every Thursday and all of the activities are based on that theme.¬† There were several tables and they had everything from little bird figurines to play with to matching pictures of male and female birds.¬† They had sensory tables set up that Dieter of course loved.¬† One had water and ducks and the other had birdseed.¬† This would be a great place for a wide variety of ages.¬† We had the pleasure of hanging out with our friends Jenny, Aiden and Sage.¬† Aiden and Dieter both kept very busy playing together and doing their own thing.¬† Here are a few other activities they had.

Playing on a rug with some duckies.

Making nests for the birds.

Painting with feathers.

Aiden’s Masterpiece

Story time with “Turkey” the parrot.¬† He even said “gobble gobble.”

Probably should have taken a picture at the beginning of the morning.  Dieter is looking a little dazed.

Thank you Jenny and kiddos for joining us!  We had so much fun!


Creamy Tortellini Soup

I had every intention of following this delicious-looking recipe for tortellini soup but somewhere I strayed, quite a bit. I guess it started when I didn’t have time to cook it in the crock-pot (story of my life). Thankfully, even with all the improvising, Jeremiah really liked it and told me I had to make it again. Now this isn’t to say that he usually dislikes my food, just that when he really likes something I need to remember what I did so I can repeat.

Creamy Tortellini Soup

Ingredients
1 tblsp. butter
1 tblsp. flour
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
1 cup chicken broth
1 can Evaporated Milk
3 cups water
1 Package Cheese Filled Tortellini
2 cups spinach, chopped
Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese

Saute onions in butter for a few minutes until they begin to soften, add garlic and saute for 1-2 more minutes. Add flour and cook on medium-high heat for a few minutes and then slowly add evaporated milk. Whisk frequently to incorporate flour mixture into milk. Continue stirring until sauce begins to thicken. Add chicken broth, water, spices, and mushrooms. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 10-15 minutes. Once mushrooms begin to soften stir in tortellini, parmesan and spinach. Cook an additional 5 minutes or until tortellini is heated.

I served the soup with a spinach salad and some simple drop biscuits.


Out and About: Adventure Park

Tuesday morning we spent some time at Adventure Park in Ham Lake with some mamas and their kiddos from church. ¬†I had never been there before but I immediately knew upon walking through the door that Dieter was going to have a blast. ¬†It was $6 for Dieter to play (parents are free) and before I could get his shoes off he was off and exploring. ¬†The space is divided up into a toddler area and a bigger playground area. ¬†Dieter loved both but being the crazy climber he is we were navigating the big tunnels, slides, and ladders for a good portion of the time. ¬†He definitely moved more easily than I did, maybe next time I’ll wear knee pads like one dad was doing, haha! ¬†This is one activity that he won’t be outgrowing anytime soon and I’m sure we’ll be back. ¬†Of course I forgot to bring my camera, grr.

So the pros: good atmosphere, friendly staff, The cons: I was so busy chasing Dieter I didn’t have much time to catch up with the other mamas.

Toddler Area

At the top of the “big kid” area. ¬†He loved looking down!

“Playing” in the arcade…they still don’t have to know that money goes in there to make it really work.

And to top it all off we met Daddy at BK (yuck) for dinner before he had class (YAY!).  A fantastic day!