Wednesday, November 30, 2011

30 is creeping up!

I had a friend post a list of 30 things to do before turning 30 just the other day and I realized that I would be turning 30 much sooner that she would. Eight months from now actually! It's startling because it is so much sooner than I realized. It got me thinking that there are so many things that I would like to do (and need to do) between now and then. It seems to me that I'm much better at accomplishing these sorts of things when I write them down so I can see them. It took some serious thinking to come up with my list, but it's finally ready to share. Without further ado, here it is:

My 30 before 30: 
1.     Go wine tasting
2.     Lose (and never find again) at least 40 pounds
3.     Pay off a debt (or more)
4.     Host a party
5.     Finish taking my sewing class
6.     Try at least one new recipe a week
7.     Learn how to make tutorials for my blog
8.     Re-learn Spanish
9.     Go on a road trip
10.  Stay at a B&B
11.  Get a regular exercise schedule
12.  Run a 5k
13.  Finish our wedding scrapbook (or junk box as my husband calls it)
14.  Try scuba diving
15.  Go shooting with my husband more (actually learn how to use a shotgun and get better with a handgun)
16.  Read the Bible all the way through
17.  Learn to sew from a pattern
18.  Blog regularly
19.  Learn to decorate cupcakes/cakes
20.  Make the VIP fundraiser list at Ronald McDonald House Walk for Kids
21.  Organize my kitchen/pantry
22.  Organize my craft room (that’s a BIG project!!!)
23.  Get into good habits (reading scriptures, drinking more water, not putting my clothes at the foot of my bed, not leaving dishes in the sink, eating healthy… what I know I should already be doing)
24.  Learn to hand sew
25.  Learn how to design my blog
26.  Watch top 25 from American Film Institute’s 100 Best Movies (it’s a good start toward the “Whaaaatttttt, you haven’t seen [insert apparently AMAZING movie title here]?????” response that I always get when a movie is referenced)
 **Update (1/7/12)** - I've had a hard time finding the AFI movies because they are mostly older movies, so I've changed this to the top 25 from IMDb's Top 250 movies. 
27.  Go on a picnic (with our picnic basket that has never been used!)
28.  Volunteer for Project Linus more often
29.  Keep my coupons organized (instead of the crazy pile that they always seem to be in)
30.  Read one new book a month (and actually finish it)

I'll keep you all updated as the list gets checked off and post all the things I get to try/get done. Should make for a fun 8 months!

Update: Check out other 30 Before 30 lists here

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Cupcakes for 2!

I love cupcakes but sometimes I don't want to go through the hassle and MESS of making a big ol' batch of them for just the two of us. Plus then I end up eating most of them. So you can imagine how excited I was when I found this tutorial at How Sweet It Is for making "Cupcakes for Two." My favorite part - it only uses ONE bowl.

We doubled the recipe and cooked them for about 20 minutes. We also added toffee pieces. They were so delicious, there wasn't any need to frost them. I may be making these a lot more often!

Monday, November 7, 2011

DIY Christmas List

There are a little less than two months left until Christmas. Still plenty of time to make presents for all you do-it-yourselfers. I need to get my butt in gear with my homemade projects but instead this morning I have been playing around on the computer looking for more projects to make. Like I need to add to my to-do list.

This morning I found all kinds of great inspiration for great DIY projects for Christmas presents. Things like neighbor gifts, stocking stuffers, great gifts for guys (because we know how hard they can be to shop for) and a lot of other fun things. And rather than keep them all to myself, I thought it might be nice to share them with you all.

One of the most comprehensive lists I found was on Tip Junkie. They are a great site if you haven't checked them out before. They have all kinds of great craft projects! The amazing thing I found was basically a search engine for gifts. You can search by gifts for everyone, kids, babies, neighbors, pets, teachers, men, grandparents, etc. The list goes on and on. It's really great! Check it out for yourself here.

Tip Junkie also has a link to all sorts of great Christmas projects at their "Christmas in July" page. There are great stocking stuffers, ornaments, party themes, Christmas Advents and other fun things. You can find all of that here.

Some of the hardest people on my list to shop for are the men. I try to come up with unique things to buy them every year but it seems to get harder and harder as the years go on. One of the hardest parts is coming up with fun stuff to go in their stockings. You can only have so many tape measures! I searched and searched for hours for great DIY men's gifts and finally found Everything Etsy. They have a great list of 25 DIY men's gifts that I think might save me this year! They also have a link to a long list of other wonderful tutorials of DIY gifts for men. I know I'm going to find great things on there.

Kojo Designs did an whole series of great gifts for guys. These gifts are some really wonderful things that I know the guys in my life would actually like and use. The link will take you to the search for all the related posts of guy gifts on the site. You can scroll through and see all the great stuff they have. One of my favorites is The Handy and Manly Garage Hook System. I can think of a few people who might like something like this.

And the last thing I've got for you this morning comes from Limefish Studio. She complied a list of 101 DIY tutorials and recipes for gifts. These are great gifts not only for Christmas but for any occasion. It is an incredible list, be sure to check it out!

I hope these help spark your creativity and help your finish your holiday shopping list.