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Organized by Michelle @ Failing Perfect

Back to school giveaway

BLOGGERS–sign up to participate in the giveaway–please say “Sheltie Steve” referred you! Not a blogger? This is your heads up; stay tuned for a chance to enter!!

 Signups Close at 8 PM EST on August 11th.

Event will take place August 15th – August 30th.

Open to residents of the United States.

One winner takes all: Amazon Kindle Fire HD, $100 Target Gift Card, Backpack full of school supplies, plus more.

Free Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest Link for posting giveaway. Must promote 3x weekly on social media accounts.

Additional links, host pages, co-host spots are available.


Minecraft Creeper Wall Art DIY

We recently moved to a home in the area of Topsail Beach in North Carolina.  We rent this home.  That means limited decor ideas, no painting, remodeling, etc…. Mum had to get creative with ways to decorate Brother Sean’s room.

This is Brother Sean’s first time having his OWN room!  He has always shared with his little brother, and that was fine when they were little but now he is older and excited for his own space.  He is really into this game called Minecraft.  Its popular amongst the preteen/teen crowd these days.  Mum searched on pinterest ways to decorate minecraft bedrooms and while there are some really elaborate ways to do it, her two main objects were #1 not permanent #2 not expensive.  She came across this pin and it exactly fit her main objectives! It was large enough to cover an entire wall, inexpensive, and was not permanent, like paint.

She received many messages on Facebook asking exactly how she created this look, so wanted to share it all here.  The original idea was found off Pinterest, she wants to make that clear.  🙂

Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper

Materials used cost Mum a total of under $20.

The actual image is created with square paper dessert plates from Party City.  They can be found in the store or you can order them online.

2 pks (40) 7 in Festive Green Square Dessert Plates
1 pk (20) 7 in Kiwi Paper Dessert Plates
1 pk (20) 7 in Black Paper Dessert Plates


Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper

7in Paper Plates from Party City

Box tape

step stool/small ladder

Mum arranged the pattern via how the PIN was laid out, 8 rows across,  8 rows down.  It was easier for her to go vertical row, by vertical row.
I will try to type out the pattern but it makes it really confusing.  Just look at the photo and copy it….

DG=Dark Green
LG=Light Green
B= Black

Row 1 down: DG, DG, LG, LG, DG, DG, LG, DG
Row 2 down: DG, B, B, DG, DG, LG, LG, DG
Row 3 down:  LG, B, B, DG, B, B, B, DG
Row 4 down: LG, DG, DG, B, B, B, LG, LG
Row 5 down: LG, LG, DG, B, B, B, DG, DG, DG
Row 6 down: DG, B, B, LG, B, B, B, DG
Row 7 down:  LG, B, B, DG, LG, LG, LG, LG
Row 8 down: LG, DG, LG, DG, DG, LG, DG, DG

Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper


Attach each plate with a bit of wide, clear, box tape.

Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper

Mum hung each row individually so she had 8 rows across.  It is easier this way then attaching a HUGE floppy bunch of plates taped together….  You could attach them to the wall any way you choose, Mum used a thumbtack because that is what she had in the garage, and it takes less tools to lug upstairs then a nail.  Also use a step stool if you want to hang it high.

Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper

Its very simple to make and I really hope you can find a way to use this tutorial.

Brother Sean actually teared up when he saw his room with this art on the wall.  Sometime so simple really loved.  That is what days are made of!


Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper
Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper
Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper
Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper
Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper
Minecraft wall art, DIY minecraft, minecraft creeper


CVS easy deals week of June 15, 2014

Mum decided to start couponing again.  Help us all.

She said she isn’t going to go nuts and buy coupons like in the past or spend hours a week planning deals, but with today’s blogs and Facebook its super easy to print off a few coupons and run to the store for some easy savings.

This week she admits started with a complete fail.  She tried to do some Aveno deal but her CVS was out of the bars, and some flavored water, out, and some sort of 7up 10 deal but her CVS didn’t carry that type of soda.  She left on Sunday feeling upset and irritated.

Fast forward to this morning and since she needed to pick up some prescriptions anyways, she tried again.

This time SCORE! and everything went as planned, minus the Aveno bars and water and 7up.

She was able to get 2 sticks of deodorant and 2 tubes of toothpaste for $2.97 PLUS she has $4 in CVS Extra Care Bucks.


$2.97 OOP + $4/ECB

$2.97 OOP + $4/ECB

Split into two transactions as follows:

Transaction 1

Right Guard Xtreme Clear Deo
Right Guard Xtreme Clear Deo

on sale 2/$6

Use 2- $2 off 1 coupon found here (you can print twice)

OOP will be $2 plus tax (as you can see Sissy was with mum and snuck in some candy…hehe)

You will get a $2 ECB save that for the next transaction

Right Guard
Right Guard

Transaction 2

Be Crest Toothpaste $1 Q found Here
Crest Sensi Relief      $1 Q found here

these are on sale for $2.99 but they are not marked as such, but no worries they should still ring up


So you have $5.98-$2Q= $3.98-$2 ECB’s from previous transaction= $1.98

Here is where Mum got lucky, if you have a CVS account you can log in and add deals to your card.
One of those deals is $3 off $10 of toothpaste, somehow this added into her deal and took off the $1.98.  Mum didn’t realize it would have done this or she would have found another toothpaste item for $1.




Project 52 2014 with My Four Hens

Two years ago mum did a project 52 with a wonderful photographer, Sarah Cornish of My 4 Hens photography.  She truly inspires mum with her words and photographs.  Last year mum tried a different P52 and failed.  Now you can blame this on her lack of motivation, or how busy she was with her life…. but deep down you can totally blame it on the lack of connection within the other project.  This isn’t saying those involved in the failed P52 are not wonderful people, they are, but there was no personal connection there.  It is hard to explain unless you just jump right in and experience the personal connection of M4H yourself!

Now mum is not a woman of many words.  So I will try to explain her vision of the theme… however feel free to ask questions if you need further explanation.  Also remember she got behind a few weeks so some of these are not truly with the week of the theme, they may have happened before/after, but what matters in the end is the completion of the project and if she falls off the wagon, to jump back on and catch up!!  So far so good!  Check back from time to time when she adds new photos for the week!

Week 14 | Radiate

Spring.  In all her glory!  A fresh rain, A fresh flower, Radiates Spring.

Week 13 | Vast

The ocean.  The world.


Week 12 | Blue

Ocean meets Sky.


Week 11 | Patterns

Nature is all patterns.


Week 10 | Soft

Here I am!  On Mums blog.  I’m soft here, in more ways then one!


Week 9 | Color Blind

Here is Sean, a child, so innocent to the ways of separation based on color.  So lucky, to be blind.


Week 8 | Bright

doh! here I am again!  Bright Light, soft and calm.

Week 7 | Focused

FEB14-4341edit 2
Mum has not been shooting this year for others, however she had some baby plans to complete, focused to make these sessions amazing here she is practicing with Isabelle.

Week 6 | Paradise 

Bacon.  Need I say more?

Week 5 | Noise

Winter Noise.

Week 4 | Joy

JAN14-3952PS 2
Backstory: I live in Florida. Yesterday we saw this funny white stuff falling from the sky. Much to my surprise I jumped and loudly yelled “Snow!!!” The kids were in school, so I grabbed the camera and tried to capture this rare sight, only to catch “SLEET” coming down. I put on my macro filters and snapped this little guy. I think he looks like a turtle, an ice turtle, but many think frog! It was really a joyous time, seeing snow in Florida!

Week 3 | Inside

Its been very cold here lately.  What to do? Bake a cake INSIDE of course, for breakfast!

Week 2 | Imperfect

We are all perfectly Imperfect. Power of Prayer.

Week 1 | Reflection

Looking back at the previous year, reflecting on all our blessings.



February Project Life

Mum absolutely is in LOVE with this project life deal!  I don’t know why she didn’t start this YEARS ago!  She wants to thank her Facebook friend for showing her about how awesome it is.

Here are her February layouts!

 Week 6 Week 6

Week 6 started off with a bang!  We got orders to move to North Carolina and this was the time to put our house up for sale!  No luck selling yet, but a perfect time to document our current home, while it is staged for online photos.

Brother Roy was also in the spelling bee!  Even though he got out on the first word he did amazing getting up there on stage!  Mum was very proud of him.  The weather also allowed for a short walk on the beach!  It was my first time on the beach, with the sand between my paws.  It was really odd, and I didn’t really like it much.  Maybe I will learn to like the beach here as I get to visit it more often?  We will see!

Week 7

week 7 week 7 week 7

Week 7 was the week of Valentines Day.  We got some Krispy Kreme doughnuts and a small bit of candy!
Isabelle was also in a play where she was the “queen bee” Little Roy was sick and stayed home from school one day this week.

Week 8

week 9 week 9 week 9

Week 8 was a pretty slow week here in our house.  The kids had off school for a holiday and we just hung out in PJ’s and watched TV.  The weather was nice and we were able to take a few walks, one being to Sissy’s ballet practice at Gull Point.  Mum also finished watching the series Dexter.  Mum also tried some new recipes, one being sweet potato chips and dip.  It was a big hit with her and Sean.

Week 9

week 9 week 9 week 9

Week 9 started with a trip to see the Lego movie.  It was really cute from what I can tell.  The kids really enjoyed it.  I also got a bath this week and mum thought it was cute to take a photo of me with the bandana… not cool mum, not cool.
The kids had a “pizza party” one of their favorite weeknight dinners!  We also mailed grandpa Karen a birthday gift!  Mum works at an eye doctors office and this was the last week of the doctors employment with their company so they all went out and ate at Texas Roadhouse.

“Chips” and Dip: 200 calorie snack!

A few days ago mum was watching Rachel Ray and the segment was about swapping typical snacks out for more healthy choices.
One of the things they offered was for potato chips and the french onion dip.  A typical serving of chips and dip is about 500 calories!  But lets face it, eating a serving of chips is a JOKE!
Get real, people grab a few handfuls of chips and I’d guess double the serving size of dip, so if we get real about this a snack of chips and dip is well over 1000 calories!  YIKES!

Rachel Ray showed a low calories swap using sweet potatoes and non fat greek yogurt!  AMAZING!

One average size sweet potato has about 110 calories, and a small cup of nonfat greek yogurt has about 100.


Preheat your oven to 450.

Cut up the sweet potatoes in thin strips or slices.  The thinner you slice them the more chip like they will be.  Mum said she sort of likes them like fries so she leaves them a little thick.  Spray them with cooking spray. Mum put a little kosher sea salt on her potatoes.  This is optional.

Sweet Potato, cooking spray, kosher salt

Sweet Potato, cooking spray, kosher salt

Cook in preheated oven for 30-45 minutes.
Rachel Ray recommended putting them on a wire baking sheet so they crisp on both sides.  If you don’t have a wire rack you can just turn them halfway through cooking.

Meanwhile make your “onion dip”  All Mum did was add a few dashes of onion powder and garlic powder.  She also cut up a few green onions and added it to the yogurt.

Greek Yogurt French Onion Dip

Greek Yogurt French Onion Dip

When your chips are finished cooking, pull them out and enjoy!  The dip really has the same flavor as the higher calorie onion dips.  You could use this with so many things!

Chips and Dip

Chips and Dip

Chips and Dip

Chips and Dip

Chips and Dip

Chips and Dip

Do you have a low calorie swap snack?  If so, Mum would love to hear about it.  She’s  a HUGE snacker and is in need of these easy, quick, and most of all tasty go to snacks.



What’s for dinner Wednesday! Easy corn on the cob, potatoes, and Chicken

I decided to start doing weekly theme posts.  The first series will be “What’s for dinner Wednesday?”

I don’t know about your family but it seems as if by Wednesday, Mum hits a midweek rut.  She’s trying to stay away from fast food but it is hard when both Mum and Dad work, kids come home from school and it is just a mad house.

So she usually plans her weekly meals and by Wednesday it seems as if a struggle for something quick and easy ensues.  Plus Isabelle has ballet practice at such a weird odd hour, that it makes it even harder not to cave to the convenience of something readily available at a drive thru window.

These meals will be fast, easy, and kid friendly!

The first one is  something so quick and easy, there is no excuse not to enjoy this meal.

One of Mums favorite places to shop is Sam’s Club.  When she is there she always grabs a fully cooked whole rotisserie chicken.

This past week they also had a special on corn on the cob and russet potatoes.

Now usually making corn on the cob is a hassle for Mum, dragging out the HUGE pot, boiling the water, it takes so LONG!  However, she’s recently discovered a super easy, fool proof way to cook corn on the cob that takes literally minutes.

She has a Pampered Chef deef covered Roaster, found here.  There is so much you can do with that pan it is simply amazing!  One thing is steam corn.

All you do it put about 1/2 a cup of water in the roaster and add the corn, microwave for 15 minutes and bam. DONE!

FEB14-4081 FEB14-4083FEB14-4093

Along with this corn I also chopped up some potatoes and sprinkled them with corse black pepper and some sea salt.  Wrap them in foil and pop in the oven for about 45 mins.  oh so good!



Along with the two carbs, I also cut up some cucumbers and used this wonderful spicy Mexican powder and some lime juice!



Cut up that whole cooked rotisserie chicken and there you have it!  A Wednesday dinner, fast, simple and delicious!


January Project Life

Mums on a roll with her Project Life!  She’s actually right on schedule and keeping up.  WOW!  I wanted to share her weekly review for the month of January.

Week 1:

Week 1

Week 1

Week 1

Week 1

Week 1

Week 1

This first week of the year, Mum and the kids went to visit Papa and Debra in Isle of Palms, SC.  They live near the beach, and while it is too cold to go into the ocean, we did get to do a few fun things!  Papa’s house has a room under neath with a foosball table. The boys spent a lot of time down there, playing the game and on their computers.  The great thing about where they live is there are several outdoor pools but get this, they are heated!!  So even when its 30 degrees outside, the water is nice and warm.  The kids had a great time swimming in the cold!!

This was also the week of the new year.  The club house put on a little party for the children, they played games such as tug of war, face the cookie, and Pool Bingo!  They ended the day with a ballon drop and stomp.

They returned home for the last part of the week and it was filled with much relaxing, along with a few dental appointments.

Week 2:

Week 2

Week 2

Week 2

Week 2

Week 2

Week 2

This week was a blast!!!  It started out with Isabelle and Mum making cake pops!  How fun!!
Grandma came down and I got to meet her.  The kids were super excited to spend the week with Grandma.  Mum and Dad went on a mini vacation to New Orleans.  While they were gone, the Grandma put together a little neighborhood pizza party.  She also taught Isabelle a little song that also uses hands. LOVE!  Mum and Dad visited New Orleans and stayed in a house mansion on Bourbon Street called The Lafitte Guest House.  It was absolutely beautiful!  Each room was decorated with period furniture.  They visited many places, took tours, ate beignets, drank chicory root coffee, tried alligator, did a little gambling, and of course drank a little!  It is a great place to visit and Mum says she recommends every one go there and experience the city at least once!
Grandma and Mum also got to out for dinner and a few drinks.

Week 3:

Week 3

Week 3

Week 3

Week 3

Week 3

Week 3

This week started with their last day in New Orleans.  They ate some lunch at the Acme Oyster House and took the street car up and down New Orlenas. On the drive back they drove across the great river, they saw an amazing sunset!!  When Mum and Dad arrived home, they put the kids to bed and then went to see a movie.  It was called “HER” and the movie was about an advanced operating system (like windows….) that actually experiences life and learns from you.  In the movie people started “dating” their computers because the operating system actually learned how to experience life and it begins to develop a personality.
Mum and Grandma also saw a movie called August of Osage County.  It was about a dysfunctional family, but it was very wild….  On Grandma’s last night, we went to get some yogurt at 32 degrees.
Grandma had to go back to Virginia, but her flight was delayed allowing her and Mum to go out for lunch at Olive Garden.
Isabelle had ballet…
This week also was a themed week for Isabelle and Roy.  On Friday, they had inside out day and Isabelle wore her shirt and pants inside out.  She really got a kick out of that!
The weather was still unseasonable cold for Florida.  Roy had a day of soccer games over in Perdio Key.
What a great week!

Week 4:

Week 4

Week 4

Week 4

Week 4

Week 4

Week 4

This week Mum had work and JURY DUTY!  It was a great experience, Mum was not chosen to sit on the jury but she was a jury select and got to go through the process of the lawyers and judge asking questions to the jury.
Mum cooked some potato soup.
The boys spent the night out and Isabelle and Mum rented a few movies, one being Snow Queen, and spent the evening inside.
Another very cold week for Pensacola! This week it actually started raining frozen rain!  Mum took out her macro filters and caught one tiny piece of hail in the shape of a frog!  How cool!
Sean also cracked a tooth and we spend a few hours in the dental office getting that repaired.

Week 5

Week 5

Week 5

Week 5

Week 5

Week 5

Week 5

SNOW DAYS IN FLORIDA!!!!  For the first time, the kids got off school for a snow day!!!  This was wonderful!  Isabelle has never seen snow before.  Now to be technical we did not get any snow, more like ice.  Everything was covered!
The kids were out of school for 3 days from this winter storm.

Mum also started experimenting with more embellishments on her project life pages, so stay tuned to see these come to life over the next few weeks!!

Wood Veneer Embellishment

Wood Veneer Embellishment