Frugal Fashionista Friday Link Up

Welcome to Frugal Fashionista Friday!  I’m so excited to be hosting this little link up and am looking forward to seeing what you found this last month!  Anything from exercise gear to formal wear is welcome.

This is a chance for us moms to show our personality through our fashion…and capture some pictures that the kiddos will cherish (or possibly laugh at) for years to come. =)

This month I tried to throw in a little accessory to my frugal find.  I have these fond memories of looking through my mom’s jewelry box as a girl.  She had all sorts of fun earrings, necklaces, and even funky rings.  They had character…personality…spunk!  I like spunk.

It occurred to me that I don’t do much in the way of accessorizing.  On your average day, I’m in my pearl studs and my wedding and engagement rings…all gifts from my husband.  And I absolutely love them.  They’re timeless…classic.

But I realized there’s another side of me not currently represented in my fashion…I’ve got spunk.  (Just like my mom.)  As do my girls.  And my hubby loves our spunk.

So I decided it’s time to add a little spice in the accessories department.  Then maybe my girls can have fun memories of going through Mommy’s jewelry box just like I do.

So, here you have it!  My Frugal Fashionista Find for April…

cute blouseSuper cute and comfortable blouse.  Love how feminine the fabric is!

 owl necklaceMy owl necklace!  Isn’t it adorable?

outfitAnd a light-weight sweater for a little layering!

A few reasons I love this frugal find…

1.  It’s really comfortable.

2.  It’s casual, but still cute and feminine.

3.  It’s not fussy. It’s mommy-proof.

In other words,

I can move easily, place a child on my hip, & everything stays where it’s suppose to.

That’s SUCCESS!

Oh, and I wanted to share…

Layla (my FOUR year old) took these…

s & eAh, he is such a hottie! (Sorry, I’m still away so you’ll have to humor me a bit.)

And there’s this one…

I love seeing how things look from her little 3.5-foot perspective!

Okay, now for the bargain… Are you ready?

I did my shopping at Kohl’s this month and here’s why…

SO sweater on sale for $17.99

minus $10 (gift card from Kohl’s mailing)

minus additional 15% (Kohl’s coupon)

Price Paid= $7.13

Mudd Owl Necklace on sale for $10.80

and Candies Blouse on sale for $21.99

minus $30 Kohl’s cash (earned after buying work clothes for the hubby)

minus additional 20% (Kohl’s coupon)

Price Paid= $2.34

Grand total for all three items= $9.47

Now, if you ask me…that’s quite the frugal find! =)

Okay, ladies, it’s your turn.  If you are a non-blogging mom, I’d love to know what you found!  Just leave a comment.  If you’re a blogger, add your link below and please remember to link back to us. =) The link up will be open until 11:59 Saturday night (Eastern time)! xoxo

~Elizabeth



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Flying Solo

I’m away from Sean & the girls for a few days, visiting family and checking out a college for my nephew.

So Monday, I found myself on a plane…kid-less.

Flying solo, this flight was much different than the last few I’ve been on.

Here’s what I did…

I looked out the window.

Nobody on my lap or in my arms.

I ate a yummy burrito.

And didn’t share.

I sat back.

Relaxed.

And drank my coke on the rocks!

Without interruption.

I admit…it was nice.  Rather nice.

Two and half hours to sit and do as I pleased.

But I’ll also admit…

I totally keep looking at pictures of these three!

Can’t wait to be reunited!

(But I will enjoy my flight back.)  =)

Happy Wednesday to you all.  Hope you’ll be back later this week to link up for Frugal Fashionista Friday! xoxo

Linked up for WW at The Paper Mama, Jenni from the Blog, Live and Love Out Loud, & And Then She Snapped

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Countdown!!!

There’s less than a week left before the first Frugal Fashionista Friday Link Up!  And I have to admit I’m kind of giddy about the whole thing. I know there’s the possibility that not a single person will link up, but for now I’m not going to worry about that.

At this point I’m just excited about showing you what I found this last month. And I’m also really happy to be doing something that was inspired by my own mom.

All that said, I really hope you’ll join me! =)

A lot of us have had the pleasure of seeing old photos of our mothers and watching how their style and personality evolved through the years.  Well, now it’s our turn to take some pictures to share with our own children.

No hiding behind your hands or running to the other room to dodge the camera! Find yourself a little something that’s fashionable, but frugal. Take some photos and tuck a few away. Then one day your kiddos can enjoy seeing how you, your style, and your personality have developed over time. It really is a gift to them!

So if you haven’t already treated yourself to a fashionable find, here’s your chance. =)

If you need a little help getting started (I certainly did.), I’ve gathered some info for you:

  • Need some help accessorizing? I totally do. Tonya has easy to follow tips for those of us that are a bit challenged in this area.
  • Going for a layered look? Well, Lisa lays out her simple 5-step process for building an outfit one piece at a time.

  • And do you need help with your photos? Nichole of In These Small Moments gives us some tips on how to get a great profile picture and her pointers can definitely be applied to your Frugal Fashionista photos. Thanks, Nichole. I think just about every woman would be happy to know how to take her most flattering picture. =)

That’s it for now! I can’t wait to see what you find. And I’m so excited to show you my super cute accessory for my outfit. (I’ll give you a hint…according to Morgan from The Little Hen House, it will be replaced by a sloth by next year!)

Love, hugs, and happy shopping…

~Elizabeth =)

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Pause Button, Please!

A couple weeks back my oldest turned four.  Totally crazy!

Of course I had/am having the whole teary-eyed, lip-quivering “my baby’s four” thing going on, but for now I won’t go all basket case on you.

I just want to do a quick little recap.  This way as I age and lose my sanity one girly dramatic moment at a time, I won’t forget Layla’s fourth!

True she was born on a single day in March.  However, this year, by the time we partied with our own little immediate family, our extended family, and her little friends, the event would be more accurately described as a birth month rather than birth-day.

We hit the aquarium. (Love the manta rays!)

The inflatable playroom. (Layla bouncing and giggling with friends…priceless!)

Chuck E. Cheese. (Going on a weekday for lunch? Awesome.  Nobody’s there!)

The ice cream shoppe. (Mommy’s idea.  Have I mentioned ice cream is my Kryptonite?)

And of course, had the whole family over to our house. (Love the chaos and laughter!)

Here’s the cake I made that brought me a bit of anxiety…

butterfly cake

The cute fabric banner I found on clearance at Target.  Less than two bucks, Ladies and Gents! Score.

fabric banner

And the birthday girl’s response after the mere 30 second effort of putting it up…

“That’s BEEEA-U-TIFUL!!!”

Double score.

The two week marathon of birthday festivities finally came to a close.

We ended last weekend just the four of us again.

Swinging on swings.

Sliding down slides. (Mommy’s bum found the wet one!)

And calling out to the birds in the trees.

Then I looked in front of me and saw this…

So beautiful.  So grown up looking.

How?

How did this…

Become that? Soooo fast!

Sean and I laid awake that night recalling all the memories made over the previous two weeks.  But I couldn’t help but think of that little girl on the swing.

Her dainty fingers.

Her stormy-colored eyes.

Her legs that seemed to have stretched overnight.

And suddenly I wished to make one little birthday request myself…

Pause button…please.

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Sisterly Love

Being the sentimental sap that I am, here’s a little convo with my 4 year old that I just had to share…

Layla:  (looking very pleased with herself)  Mommy, you want to hear a song that I wrote?

Me:  Sure!

Layla:  Okay! (Calmly takes her center-stage stance.  Swallows.  And in very sing-songy fashion begins.)

Baby, Baby, I love you

Baby, Baby, I love you

Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby

Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby

Baby!

(She smiles to signal her completion.)

Me: (Completely charmed, I applaud.)  That was beautiful!

Layla:  I wrote it for Kenley!

Me:  You did? Why?

Layla:  Because!  She LOVES baby dolls!

(I pause.  My heart grins from left atrium to right.)

Me:  You’re right, Sweetheart.  She does.  And she is going to LOVE her special song.

This little moment gave me those super mushy-gooshy, mommy feelings ALL over!

And Kenley has been requesting the “Baby Song” each day since Layla first sang it to her!

Totally love it.

Sisterly love

Nothing says "sisterly love" like a little wrestling! =)

 

P.S.  Don’t forget the Frugal Fashionista Friday Link Up on April 6th.  If you haven’t already, start your shopping! =)  Hope you’ll join in the fun and give your kiddos some photos of you to cherish for years to come!

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Rainbow & Pot o’ Gold Fruit Platter: St. Patrick’s Day Party Pleaser

Today my little preschooler has a St. Patrick’s Day party.  And this time we signed up for fruit.  Figured that one shouldn’t be too bad.

Brainstorming our options, this is what we came up with…

A rainbow of strawberries, oranges, pineapple, kiwi, blueberries, and grapes!

A cloud of super yummy (but I’m afraid not too healthy) fruit dip!

And of course…

A pot of “gold”…

A.K.A pineapple!

Put it all together and this is what you got!

rainbow fruit platter

A pretty straight-forward, easy St. Patty’s Day themed fruit platter for the munchkins to enjoy.

I thought about skewering the fruit to make individual rainbows, but decided against it on two counts:

1) Skewer + Preschooler = Potential Weapon

Potential weapon = Potential injury

Potential injury = Mommy getting in trouble

Oh, but the child getting injured thing is the important reason…of course.

Anyways, back to why I decided against the skewers…

2) This way the kiddos can have as much or as little of the various fruits as they choose.

Secret reason #3…

It takes less time to throw together! =)

Okay, so I think creating the rainbow fruit part is pretty self-explanatory.

As for the gold pineapple coins, I suggest cutting off a couple sides of one pineapple and using a corer, like a cookie cutter, to create small cylinders (or you could just use a knife and cut around something small and round like me). The cylinders can then be sliced into thinner coins.

For the totally indulgent, life-shortening dip, here you go…

Fruit Dip:

(WARNING: This is sweet and yummy.  Little fingers helping you may be tempted to dip and lick!  Not that this happened to me…ahem.)

1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese (softened) *I used 1/3 less fat cream cheese

3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar

1/4 tsp. vanilla

1/8 tsp. lemon juice

Mix the softened cream cheese and confectioner’s sugar.  Then add lemon juice and vanilla.

Beat the dickens out of it til’ smooth and creamy!  And…

Voila!

That easy.

Use immediately or cover and refrigerate.

Now, the presentation…

I went to the party store, bought a plastic blue platter to represent the sky (but don’t feel this is necessary).  And also grabbed a small black bowl for my “pot o’ gold”.  If you’re lucky, your party store will actually have a pot-shaped black bowl.  Mine did…one too big…one too small!  Hence, the regular bowl!

Then I used slightly funny shaped bowl for my cloud.  Think they call it a “cabbage bowl”?  I dunno… Again, not completely necessary.  You could just use a small, white or clear bowl for your cloud.

Okay, I know I said I decided against the skewers, but I did get these cute little shamrock toothpick-like things for the kiddos to pick their fruit up.

BUT they have a BLUNT point!

(I know…could still be a weapon, but loooook…they’re cute and they say “Happy St. Patrick’s Day”.  Sorry…couldn’t resist.)

Okay, so there you have it!  A Rainbow & Pot o’ Gold Fruit Platter!

Before I go, two things I learned while doing this…

1) It’s not nearly as difficult to win over a preschooler with fruit as it is with veggies.

And…

2) Cutting a whole fresh pineapple is a pain!…but totally worth the sweet juiciness! =)

From my partly Irish home to yours…

Have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

P.S.  If you want a traditional Irish meal for Saturday…check out my Corned Beef and Cabbage!

All set for her party...Isn't she stinkin' adorable?!


Linked to
Fun Stuff Fridays

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Wordless(ish) Wednesday: What’s That Coming Down the Street?

Get ready…

It’s almost here…

What you ask?

THE TRASH “TUCK”!

Translation…trash truck.

(We’re easily amused!) =)

Layla & Kenley Awaiting the truck’s arrival,

 Kenley, stitch-free (YAY!) & Layla, my now FOUR year old.

A lot happens in a week. =)

(And did you notice? They’re holding hands. How cute!)

Linked up for Wordless(ish) Wednesday at The Paper Mama, And Then She Snapped, Project Alicia, Live & Love Out Loud, & Jenni from the Blog

 

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For Your Birthday: Reasons I Like You

Dear Layla Girl,

You’re FOUR YEARS OLD today!  I’m so excited for you! And I’m so excited to be spending the day with you and Daddy and Kenley.

Layla Christine, I tell you “I love you” all the time.   And I’ve loved you since I knew you were in my belly.

I couldn’t wait to hold you in my arms…squeeze your little toes…and rub your soft cheeks against mine.

And when you came out of my belly, I loved you even more…more than I could imagine possible!

You were the greatest, most special-ist, most fantastically, wonderful gift your daddy and I had ever received. And since that day, we’ve been doing our best to show you just how MUCH we love you.

But!

I want you to know that I love you and

I LIKE you.

I like you a lot.

I think you’re a pretty awesome, cool little kiddo!  And even if you weren’t my Layla Girl, I would want to know you…play with with you…and be your friend. Because you are just that great!

Layla, here are some of the things I like most about you…

1) I like how after two pictures, you start making funny faces at the camera!

2) I like that when your sister is crying, you try to bring her a toy that will make her smile.

3) I like how you lay your stickers out on the table and arrange them ever-so-carefully by color or object.

4) I like how you stand on your tippy-toes to reach the light switch.

5) I like how you sing and talk to yourself when you’re drawing.

6)  I like how you hear music and just have to dance! And how you close your eyes when a slow song comes on. (Too cute!)

7)  I like how you use the word “actually”…a lot. =)

8)  I like your sleepy-eyed, beautiful smile and your cheery “Good morning, Mommy” when you first wake up.

9) I like that you have a favorite planet, Saturn.  And that you love looking at the moon and stars!

10) I like that you ask a lot of questions and want to learn.  (You inspire me!)

There are so many things I like about you, Layla.  And this is just the beginning to my list.  But over this next year, I want to tell you more…more of what makes you…an awesome little girl!

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl!  You are FOUR. YEARS. OLD today!

From the very top of my head to the very tips of my toes…I love you.

And…

I like you! =)

xoxo

Mommy

 

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Wordless(ish) Wednesday: ER Visit

Chin meets toy chest…

Teeth meet lip…

We meet ER doctor.

Three and half hours.  Three stitches. And many tears later. =(

My poor baby…Not the photo I was hoping to post today.

Linked up today for Wordless(ish) Wednesday with:

The Paper Mama, Parenting By Dummies

Project Alicia, And Then She Snapped, Jenni from the Blog

Live and Love Outloud & Sakura Haruka

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St. Patrick’s Day Preparations: Corned Beef & Cabbage

Although my Puerto Rican genes have seemed to override the rest, truth is…I’m just as much Irish!

Shocking, I know.

Growing up, we enjoyed many mouth-watering Puerto Rican dishes like arroz con gandules (rice with pigeon peas) and pernil (roasted pork shoulder…so good!). But my mom also made us a traditional Irishman’s meal that became one of my very favorites, corned beef with cabbage and potatoes!

It’s a meal I now cook for my own little family. And with St. Patrick’s Day approaching, I thought I’d share it with you.

Corned beef and cabbage is a hearty, flavorful dish, but it’s also a super easy, one. pot. meal! So unless you’re a total weirdo who enjoys dish-washing, you can see the appeal.

Okay, so imagine I’m Martha Stewart…or if she annoys you, pick someone who doesn’t and let’s begin with what you’ll need…

Ingredients:

Corned Beef (Flat Cut Brisket) approx. 2.5-3 lbs.*

1/3 c. chopped onion

2 tsp. Minced garlic

1 ½ -2 lbs. Small red skin potatoes

1 Head of Cabbage (cut into small wedges)

*If the corned beef did not come with its own spice packet, use 2 tbs. Pickling Spice

Approximate Servings: 4

Place your corned beef, fat side up, in a large pot. Add the onion, garlic, and spice packet (or 2 tbs. pickling spice). Fill the pot with water until your corned beef is completely covered. 

Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover with lid. Allow to simmer for 2-3 hours or until the meat is tender and has an internal temp. of at least160 degrees.

Then remove the meat from the pot. (Do not discard the water.) Cover the meat with foil and allow to rest 10-15 minutes before slicing.

Meanwhile, return the pot with the water to the stove and bring back to a boil. Add the potatoes and boil for five minutes. Then add cabbage to the potatoes and continue to boil 10 more minutes or until potatoes are cooked.

When you’re ready to slice your corned beef, put the fat side down and look to see what way the grain is running. You’ll want to cut thin slices against the grain to keep the meat as tender as possible.

Serve up some cabbage, potatoes, your sliced corned beef, and you’re ready to dine!

If you’re like me, I slather my potatoes with butter and mayo…sprinkle some black pepper and add a dollop of yellow mustard to dip my corned beef.

Oh yeah…that’s the stuff! =)

Hope you enjoy this hearty Irish meal for St. Patrick’s Day…or any other day of the year!

And now…a little Irish Proverb to send you on your way! (For full affect, imagine a scruffy Irishman speaking.)

 DANCE as if no one were watching,
SING as if no one were listening,
And LIVE every day as if it were your last.

Cheers!

~Elizabeth

***ANNOUNCEMENT***

IT’S OFFICIAL!  FRUGAL FASHIONISTA FRIDAY WILL BE A LINK UP STARTING ON THE FIRST FRIDAY IN APRIL!!!  HERE’S WHAT YOU DO…FIND A LOOK FOR A BARGAIN…CAPTURE YOURSELF IN A PHOTO…AND THEN KEEP IT SAFE SO YOUR KIDDOS CAN ONE DAY LOOK BACK AND SEE YOU IN ALL YOUR GLORY! SO GET TO SHOPPING LADIES AND GET READY TO SHARE YOUR FRUGAL, BUT FASHIONABLE FINDS! (OH, AND THIS PROBABLY GOES WITHOUT SAYING, BUT WE’RE LOOKING TO LINK UP OUTER…NOT UNDER…WEAR! =)) AND REMEMBER, HAVE. FUN!!!

HUGS TO YOU ALL…

~ELIZABETH

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