Monday, September 28, 2009

Hooded Towel Giveaway

How about a giveaway?!  If you win, you can go to my store (The Pumpkin Patch) and pick out any of the hooded towels offered there.  These are the rules.

1.  The contest ends on October 16, 2009.
2.  Leave a comment on this post telling me your name and a valid email address.
3.  The winner will be notified by email on Saturday, October 17, 2009.
4.  The winner will have 3 days to claim the prize by sending me their address.  If the winner does not claim their prize, I will choose another winner.
5.  The towel will be shipped within 2 business days of the winner claiming their prize and will be shipped using priority mail (2-3 days).
6.  The winner will be chosen using Random.Org’s True Random Number Generator.

If you want to be entered more times, you can do any or all of the following.

1.  Advertise this giveaway on your blog (make sure to leave me a new comment telling me you posted it on your blog and what your blog address is).
2.  Become a follower of The Pumpkin Patch (make sure and leave me a new comment telling me you are a follower).
3.  Add my button to your blog (make sure you leave me a new comment telling me you grabbed my button and what your blog address is).
4.  Leave me a comment (or send me an email) with suggestions of what else you would like to see on The Pumpkin Patch.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Grab a button!

Here are all of my buttons.  Help yourself to whichever ones you want.

All you have to do is copy the html code, log in to your blog account and go to the layout tab.  Click on "add a gadget" and then on "html/java code".  You don't need to use a title, just paste the html code in the box and click save.
Main Button: 

Whatcha Got Wednesday





Friday, September 25, 2009


"The entire sum of existence is the magic of being needed by just one other person." --fortune cookie

My husband went to lunch at a chinese buffet today and this is what his fortune cookie said.  I can't stop thinking about it!  If being needed by just one other person is magical, then there is more magic in my life than the "most magical place on earth".  I am truly a blessed woman and I LOVE my life.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

How to make hair flowers -- tutorial

Ever seen a little girl with a really cute flower in her hair and wondered how to do it? Well, today is your lucky day! Here are step by step directions with lots of pictures. Email me if you have any questions.

First you need to gather your supplies. You will need the following:
  • fake flowers (you can buy these at craft stores, Wal-Mart, the Dollar Store)
  • glue gun with extra glue sticks
  • hair clips (I bought a box of 100 from Sally's Beauty Supply)
  • ribbon
  • matches or lighter
  • scissors
  • any accessories you may want to go with the flowers
Let's get started!

1. take the flower off of the stem and take it apart.

2.  Cut the stem part of the center piece off.  If it is 2 separate pieces, glue them together.

3.  Glue each of the pieces of the flower together.

4.  Cut your ribbon.  It should be just wide enough to cover your clips.  I use 3/8 in. grosgrain ribbon.  I like to cover the entire clip with ribbon.  For the clips I use, the ribbons need to be 6 and 3/8 in. long.  After you have your ribbon cut, you need to burn the ends.  I just use a match, but you can use a candle, or lighter or whatever you want.  Just be careful and make sure your children are not in any danger.
5.  Now you need to cover your clips with ribbon...even the inside of it.  I like to cover the entire clip with ribbon because it seems to stay better in my girls' hair and their hair doesn't get stuck under the edge of the ribbon if it is completely covered.
6.  Next you need to glue the flower to the clip.  Then you are all done!

7.  If you don't want to use the center that came in the flower, you can add other embellishments.  You can sew a button to it, or glue on some jewels.  I don't like jewels or buttons on the bigger flowers, but I do like jewels on smaller flowers.  It is all a matter of preference.  Here are some that I added some bling to because my daughter was begging me to.  I don't love the big ones, but she does.  I guess that is what matters right?  You can also mix and match the petals from the different flowers to make some multi-colored flowers. I did 6 multi-colored, 6 single colored, and 4 with a little bit of bling.

These are the flowers that I made yesterday. Pretty cute huh?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

How to remove wallpaper -- tutorial

We bought our house a little over 2 years ago and while it was/is a great house, it needed a LOT of cosmetic work done. One of the cheapest ways to give a room (or an entire home) a facelift is to paint. This is a pretty easy way to spruce anything up. If wallpaper is part of the mix, then the job becomes much bigger. Here is a tutorial on how to successfully remove wallpaper and wallpaper glue from your walls in preparation to paint them.

For normal wallpaper removal, you would get the wallpaper good and wet and let it sit for a few minutes. I like to use a spray bottle full of hot water. After letting it sit for a few minutes, you can usually peel the wallpaper off in sheets. Make sure to remove any outlet or switch plates first. If there is any wallpaper pieces left on the wall, just spray them again and they should come right off. You can buy a wallpaper perforator that punctures the wallpaper and allows the water to get under the wallpaper better. There are several different kinds. I have used these before and I don't really feel like they help that much. You have to REALLY perforate the wallpaper and push fairly hard. There is also a type of liquid chemical that is supposed to help remove wallpaper easily. It is called DIF and I have used it. Again, I didn't feel like it made that much of a difference and with 4 small children in the home, I would rather just use water.

I broke this up into smaller videos so you can easily go to the part you are interested in instead of having to watch all of it.

This is what my dining area looked like when we moved in. The curtains matched perfectly to the wallpaper which I thought was really weird, but maybe that's what was popular 30ish years ago. It wasn't until I started to take it down that I realized that the wallpaper was actually fabric!

Once the wallpaper is down, there is usually glue left on the wall. It has to be removed before you paint. Here is a description of 2 different ways of removing the glue from the walls in preparation for painting.

This is how to remove the glue using a sponge and some soapy water. It is definitely work, but it is VERY effective.

This is how to remove the glue using an electric sander. There are 2 videos--one to show how to use the sander and one to explain what to do when you are done sanding.

That's it! Once I get this room done, I will post pictures. Let me know if you have any questions.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Chicken Caesar Salad

I tried this recipe for dinner and it was YUMMY!!!  I got this recipe off of, and I tweaked it a little bit.  I thought I would share.

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into wide strips or chunks
1 1/2 tsp Lemon Pepper
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1-2 heads romaine lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1.  Cut chicken into pieces (strips or chunks) and put into a nonstick skillet.  Sprinkle seasonings over it and pour oil on it.  Stir until coated and cook over medium-high heat until thoroughly cooked, stirring frequently.  Remove from heat and set aside.  Do not drain oil.
2.  Mix vinegar, mustard, and Worcestershire in a small bowl.  Stir into chicken.
3.  Put lettuce into large bowl.  Add chicken and Parmesan cheese and toss lightly.
4.  Add anything else you want, like croutons, cherry tomatoes, olives, more cheese.  Enjoy!

This recipe was submitted by McCormick & Company and of course they suggest using their seasonings.  I just used what I had on hand.  I tried to find the exact link, and it must have been removed, because I couldn't find it.  Sorry McCormick & Company.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Do you know the number to Poison Control?

When E was born the Dr. gave me a magnet with the phone number to poison control and told me that I needed to memorize it.  She said, "Hopefully you will never have to call it, but you need to know the number just in case."  I did memorize the number, and it has come in handy several times over the last 6 years.  I have had to call it for my own kids, and had to give the number to others for their kids.  Every time I have called it, they have been EXTREMELY nice and helpful and whatever the issue was, it was never a big problem.  I have never had to take a child to the ER...until yesterday.

I will spare you all the details, and just say that B ate a pill (I still don't know where she found it) and when I called poison control, they told me to take her to the emergency room.  They had to monitor her heart rate, pulse, blood pressure and breathing for 6 hours.  She also had to drink charcoal to try and absorb anything that was in her stomach.  Once she got a few readings of normal, they released us and we got to come home around 9 pm.

If you find yourself in a similar situation, here is the information you need to know.  The National Poison Control number is 1-800-222-1222.  It is staffed locally by Doctors and nurses. Every time I have had to call it, they have always been very kind. No one has ever talked down to me or made me feel like a bad mom.

I remember as a kid seeing the Mr. Yuk stickers on things that we weren't supposed to touch.  I have never put them on anything in our home, but I think I am going to order some and put them on everything that may be harmful to my kids.

Here is the link to the Mr. Yuk store. It has lots of great information. Some of it you can view as a pdf link without having to buy it. It is worth checking out and making sure you know what things are dangerous and how to safeguard your family...especially your children.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Saturday, September 5, 2009

More sickness...

Just in case you were wondering, I am sick now too. So are E and J. Party at our house...anyone want to come?

Hopefully everyone is better before school starts on Tuesday!

Thursday, September 3, 2009


Last week I watched a friend's younger kids so she could take her older kids to register for classes.  A couple of days later she told me that her younger kids were sick and had high fevers and croup.  AWESOME!

It only took another day or so before C was sick.  When he woke up from his nap he had a high fever and he sounded terrible!  I gave him some meds to bring the fever down and then had to give him a nebulizer treatment to help with the wheezing.  My boys have had lung issues since each of them was born, so we have owned a nebulizer for 4+ years and the Dr. just keeps me stocked with albuterol.  We have been through this so many times that I know what can be handled at home, what needs a Dr. appt, and what needs an ER visit.

That night was scary!  I was up with him most of the night and there are many times when I was minutes away from taking him to the ER.  I never ended up taking him, but we did go to the Dr. first thing the next morning.  She was very surprised at how quickly things went bad for C and how terrible he sounded.  She gave him a steroid shot and a treatment in the office and waited to see how he did before letting us go home.  She also told me that we were probably going to be on ER watch for another couple of days.  Well, a few days have passed since then, and she was right.  He has had one heck of a time.  We have not needed to take him to the ER, but he is definitely sick! His fever keeps coming and going and his cough is pretty constant. He is feeling much better than he was at first, and I can tell he is starting to come around again. He'll just have a lingering cough for a while.

B is sick now too.  She isn't near as bad as C, but she is pretty miserable.  Her throat hurts so bad she won't talk and all I have gotten either of them to eat today is applesauce and water.  She also has a fever and cough.  Neither of them is sleeping well, so they both have pretty big circles under their eyes.  I wonder if I will get sick too...