Just another Minnesota Mom blog.

I Thought I Lost my Kid.

Posted: May 1st, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Living in the City, Parenting | Tags: Cleaning, Moving, Terrible Twos, Toddlers | 2 Comments »

Right now I am sitting at my dining room table, trying to figure out how in the world I am going to get this house packed up. I can’t get the dishes done without Judah running out the backdoor, let alone do work where I need to be sorting and organizing and getting rid of things I don’t want or need to take to our new house. He makes the smallest task next to impossible.

On Monday I was in the kitchen, doing dishes (which are endless when you don’t have a dishwasher) as well as asking myself what is water purifier, and he went outside to the backyard. I had him leave the back door open so I could hear him, but not 5 minutes later, he was nowhere to be found. John and I both kind of freaked out. Our yard is fenced with Long Fence Privacy Fences from longfence.com , but it backs up to an alley- could someone have taken him from the alley? The worst things go through your mind.

After about 10 minutes of running around like crazy people (our neighbor across the street helped too), we found him. He was in the garage, which we both thought was locked. I had my phone in my hand, ready to call 911. It was scary shit., but it backs up to an alley- could someone have taken him from the alley? The worst things go through your mind.

I cannot take my eyes off this kid for a second. Which means I get absolutely nothing done until after the boys go to bed, and by then I am completely exhausted and ready to put my feet up and drink a beer and cruise Facebook.

It’s frustrating to live like this.

We move in a month, so adding extra locks and alarms to our doors is silly. It came as a recommendation from the best locksmith in Manchester, who we trust greatly. Telling him “no” is useless. Putting him on time out is laughable. We have taken away toys and privileges and everything we can think of, even the new hoverboard we bought after looking at all the best hoverboard reviews, it doesn’t stop the naughtiness. And honestly, I can deal with all of those things as long as I am not having to worry about his safety. Within 30 minutes of getting up in the morning, he has escaped to the backyard. I don’t have time to deal with that when I am trying to get the boys out the door to school.

So back to packing- I have no idea how this is going to get done. I feel like we need a few kid free weekends where we can get the majority of it done, because staying up until midnight, packing by myself doesn’t sound like a good time!

The countdown has started- we close on the 31st!

I’ll be in the corner, distracting myself with paint chips and Pinterest, trying to forget that I have a laundry list of things to do.


Simplify.

Posted: June 25th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Stream of Consciousness | Tags: Cleaning, Food, Food Blogging, Simplify | 7 Comments »

I have been overcome with the urge to get rid of all the unnecessary stuff in our life.

From what we put in our mouths to what clutters our rooms and our time.

I have an unhealthy relationship with things.  I cannot part with anything without an argument in my head.  If it was a gift, forget about it.  I’ll probably keep it around forever- even if it’s not useful, not my taste, or long since been relegated to a box in the basement.

I have to let go of the things.

The thing is not what is important- it’s the memory or the person or the occasion and those things will not go away because I donate the item.

I’m working on this.

I have purged our kitchen and am moving on to other rooms of the house.  I should really set a date for a yard sale so I have some accountability to get this done.

In the theme of doing things simply, I just canned for the first time in my life.  We have this black raspberry bush growing along the fence half on our side, half on the neighbors.  Last year we were told to pick until we couldn’t eat anymore, so we have been doing just that.  There have been a lot of berries this year.  At least twice as many as we had last year and I think I’ll get one more day of picking out of it.

But, what to do with all of these berries?  After about 2 days in the fridge everyone has had their fill and they are starting to look a little lifeless.  I figured now would be as good a time as any to try to make jelly.  I found a recipe for Raspberry Jalapeno jelly that looked awesome (even if it didn’t sound very fail proof from the comments).  I’m a fan of jalapeno poppers and they are always great with pepper jelly.  If it doesn’t work I will only be out the price of the jalapenos, the lids and the pectin.  I can live with that.

Right now I’m staring at 9 jars and wondering if they will set up- I’m betting on “No” at this point.  Of course the jars are still flaming hot, so who knows.  Maybe there is a chance.  What was left in the bottom of the pan and the measuring cup seemed to solidify nicely.  I’m crossing my fingers.

Tomorrow I am stepping out of my comfort zone and doing something I never in a million years thought I would be doing.  I’m going on an Oink Outing (with Oink Outings).  I’m meeting up with some local bloggers at the Hilton tomorrow morning and we’ll be cooking with the executive chef there and learning about locally grown pork before we travel to the farm and learn how the pigs are raised.

I am kind of freaking out.

I am far from a food blogger.  Being surrounded by food bloggers intimidates the hell out of me.  Even if I can hold my own in the kitchen, I always bend to the pressure when around others who I perceive to be an authority.  I hope I don’t start something on fire or chop off a finger.

I’m not the poster girl for local and organic eating.  There.  I said it.  The secret is out.  Actually, that wasn’t a secret.  I just find it super cost prohibitive and feeding a family of 5 on a budget of $200 every 2 weeks (including pet food and all miscellaneous items) I have my hands full just avoiding the aisles full of processed foods.  So, I avoid all the documentaries about how food is made and why organic is better because it’s just not attainable right now.

We do however shop the farmers market and choose local restaurants over chains as often as possible.  Most of the restaurants in our area seem to really go with the locally raised foods thing, so when we eat out we are covered.  At the farmer’s market we usually just stick with fruits and veggies although I did buy a dozen eggs the other day and I have to say I am severely underwhelmed.  Where are these huge orange yolks and extra richness I have been hearing about?  They didn’t look any different than the Market Pantry eggs I usually buy and at $5 a dozen…well, let’s just say they might not be on the list next time (see $200 budget).

But!  I am open to learning.  So bring on the piggies.




Friday Favorites Giveaway {Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day + Caldrea}

Posted: June 24th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Reviews and Giveaways | Tags: Caldrea. Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day, Cleaning, Cleaning Products, Essential Oils, Giveaway, Giveaways, Green Cleaning, Product Reviews, Reviews and Giveaways | 33 Comments »

A few weeks ago I talked about how I’m trying to go green with my cleaning products. It’s definitely a process. I would say I’m about half-way there in getting rid of my old favorites (for review they would be: bleach, Lysol and Mr. Clean) and replacing them with something a bit less toxic.

One of my first loves ever in fancy schmancy best odor eliminator cleaning products was the hometown favorite Caldrea. Caldrea products are full of plant-derived ingredients and essential oils instead of harsh chemicals, the packaging is smart and the scents are amazing.  I remember getting a little 3-piece sink set at my Bridal shower that I would scour gift shops and boutiques in Columbia Missouri where we were living looking for replacement bottles when I ran out of my precious dish soap and hand soap.

When we moved to our 100 year old duplex in Minneapolis and had no dishwasher we started going through dish soap by the gallon. I quickly found that keeping that expensive dish soap on hand wasn’t really part of the budget at the rate we were going through it.

Mrs. Meyers Rosemary Dish Soap

Enter Mrs. Meyers Clean Day. Funny enough, I wasn’t aware that Mrs. Meyers was owned by Caldrea…that works out quite well for me as I love to support local companies.  Like Caldrea, it’s got lovely scents that aren’t overly sweet or cloying and again, all natural ingredients and essential oils. Both brands tend towards the herbal and floral and are mostly single note scents- Rosemary, Parsley, Geranium.

Once I was hooked on the dish soap I moved on to my absolute favorite Mrs. Meyers Clean Day product- the Geranium Surface Scrub. This is the product that I used to clean my cherished claw foot tub. It was like special treatment for my little oasis.

Back to those scents- I live in a house full of boys. Well, a man and lots of little men. They are smelly. Three kids in diapers is SMELLY. You know what makes me happy? When opening the bathroom door gives me a nice waft of Basil Blue Sage hand soap instead of a diaper pail.

Caldea Basil Blue Sage Hand Soap

 

I have had a love affair with another brand’s counter top spray in the past and am now hooked on Caldrea’s Sea Salt and Neroli counter top spray. If you follow me on Twitter you may have seen me going on and on about the loveliness that was the scent in my kitchen and my table top and anything else I could convince myself counted as a “counter top”. It’s the little things.

So I’ve got some favorites here and they aren’t going to break the bank if I keep them in my cleaning arsenol, even on my budget. If you are looking to save a few pennies, go for the Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day, you’ll get the same quality of the Caldrea and look smart while doing it. Although I don’t think you’ll regret choosing either. If you need help cleaning your windows then hire Long Island home window cleaning service.

It’s full of no-nonsense tips and tricks to keeping a clean home.Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day is going to give one of my readers a copy of their book- Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Home! Mrs. Meyers book

To enter this giveaway you must visit either Mrs. Meyers or Caldrea and tell me which product or scent you are most interested in.

Extra entries:

Follow The Slacker Mom on Google Friend Connect
Follow The Slacker Mom on Twitter
Follow Mrs. Meyer’s on Twitter
Follow Caldrea on Twitter
Like The Slacker Mom on Facebook
Like Mrs. Meyer’s on Facebook
Like Caldrea on Facebook

Be sure to do a separate comment for each entry so they can all be counted when I draw the winner.  This giveaway will close on July 8th at 10pm.  The winner will be chosen by Random.org.  I will contact the winner by email, if I do not hear back from the first winner within 48 hours I will draw another winner.

Disclosure:  I was provided 4 products from Mrs. Meyers and Caldrea for the purpose of this review.  All opinions are my own.

Sources-

http://homecleanexpert.com/

 


I had an Extreme Couponing “Moment”

Posted: May 17th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Stream of Consciousness | Tags: Blogging, City Living, Cleaning, Day to Day, Extreme Couponing, Feelings, Firsts, FTW, Mom stuff, money, Saving Money | 6 Comments »

Spurred on by a photo of a friends latest Target trip where she purchased among other things, a box of Tide and some various other H&B products with her total coming out to be less than the box of Tide, I made a list.

I was going to try my hand at this Extreme Couponing thing.

I was pretty excited as I hunted through my coupons.  You could say I was extremely excited.

So I put the boys on the bus, strapped Judah in the car, grabbed my list and headed towards my Target.  Sadly, this might be my last visit to this Target.  You know, because we are moving to the other side of the city and all.  (cue sad music)

But this trip!  This trip was amazing.  (I took pictures but our camera cord is at the new house so this will have to do for now.)

The Breakdown:
MC- Manufacturers coupon TC- Target coupon

21oz Tide Stain Release Spray sale $4.49 ($3 MC + $1 TC) total $.49

114oz Tide Powder with Bleach sale $10.99 ($3 MC $.75 TC) total $7.24

J&J First Aid to Go x2 reg $.97 ($1 off 2 MC) total $.94

Olay Silk Whimsy Body Lotion w/ free trial size lotion clearance $4.18
Olay single bar soap reg. $.97
Secret trial size deodorant reg $.97
($4 off MC if you buy lotion+deodorant+soap) total $2.12

22oz Murphy’s Oil Soap Spray price cut $2.49 ($.50 MC + $1 TC) total $.99

1Qt Similac RTF reg $5.49 ($5 MC) total $.49

And my treat for my trip was a large Cherry Limeade from Sonic reg $1.99 ($1.99 voucher from Star Tribune STeals) total FREE!

Total: $33.51  Paid: $12.27  Savings:  $21.24 (63%)

Not bad.

I would be amiss if I didn’t point you towards my current giveaway of $50 to Tea Collection which ends 5-27 and also my Coupons+Deals page.  You can find lots of things on this page- coupon generators, coupon toolbars, freebies…

Disclosure: These were the prices at the Fridley MN Super Target on 5-17-11, some of the Sale prices may have been TPC’s (I didn’t write them all down as I was shopping).

I


A new house needs new…candles

Posted: May 17th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Sponsored Posts | Tags: Blogging, Cleaning, Day to Day, Firsts, Moving, Sponsored Post | 3 Comments »

Sex toys - EdenFantasys adult toys store

Recently I was contacted by www.edenfantasys.com  about writing a sponsored post for their site.  Now, I’m not usually one to go to a “site like that” but, I do need some new candles…ahem.

So, off I went!

They have many different candles to choose from, lots of lovely colors and scents to freshen up your home.  If you are into that kind of thing.  And I am.  Into candles.  (Obviously)

Of course they have many, many other things there, other than candles.

Like books.

I had heard about this book:  Porn for Women.   Have you seen this book?  Men vacuuming?  Men doing laundry?  It will be liked for women who are into adult content and use adult websites and services as Zoom Escorts Liverpool for their enjoyment.

Yes Please!

What woman doesn’t fantasize about a fully clothed (hot) man cleaning her home?  I’m not alone in this, am I?

Cleaning and candles…who knew!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for which I have been compensated.  All opinions are my own.


We are Moving!

Posted: May 16th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Living in the City | Tags: 2011 in 2011, City Living, Cleaning, Day to Day, FTW, Moving | 2 Comments »

Let’s all take a collective deep breath.

It was a loooong weekend here.  Mostly for Yogi Dad.  He did all the heavy lifting. 

I did the panicking and freaking out and OMG we have to MOVE!  NOW!  PACK THE CAR LET”S GOGOGOGOGO!

Yeah, Saturday was not my best day.

Yesterday was good.  Thanks to my awesome sister who let us pick her up after a long night out with her girlfriends so she could sit with the boys while we made a few trips back and forth and I could get my bearings in the new house. 

What is it about moving that makes all of your stuff look like it needs to be replaced?

This is going to be a long week, the goal is to have pretty much everything except furniture and big boxes out of here by Friday night, cribs disassembled ready to go, any boxes staged in the living room.  We are going to be ready.

The guy at Two Men and a Truck laughed and said that is what everyone plans on doing.

He doesn’t know just how cheap we are!  Or the list of things I would rather spend the money set aside for this move on…

So, wish us luck! 

And please, if you’ve got any moving tips I am all ears.  Or eyes.  Would it be eyes since I am reading it?


Clean House

Posted: May 7th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Cleaning | Tags: Cleaning, Moving, New House | 5 Comments »

So, we are moving in a few weeks.  We get our keys next week and then we’ll be between 2 places for 2 weeks.  Today was the Open House for our duplex.  I know everyone who’s ever had to show a house already knows this: keeping things just right with kids in the house is HARD.

We had plans to leave our house today at 11:30.  At 10:30, after picking up the same two bins of toys and reshelving all of their books for the 157th time today, I called it quits.  The husband has been power washing the driveway of any drawings made by the kids with his pressure washer.  We loaded everyone up into the car (including our pets!) and ran some errands.  Good Will drop-off, Target, picked up a Mother’s Day present for my Mom, drove through the new neighborhood etc.  It was a fairly packed two and a half hours.

When we got home, everything was neat and clean and ready to go, especially the new door from www.acewindowsne.co.uk/doors/.  I made dessert for tomorrow and did the dishes.  I made dinner for tonight and did the dishes again.  We picked up the toys every 30 minutes or so and then finally put everyone to bed.  It’s nice to have everything neat and tidy, but I’m not sure I can keep this up!

I mean I’d LOVE to, I just don’t know if it’s possible.

It’ll have to happen for at least another 48 hours, someone wants to take one more look….of course.

Wish me luck!

How do you keep things clean for things like this with kiddos in the house?


Something just for me.

Posted: April 29th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Stream of Consciousness | Tags: Cleaning, Day to Day, Family, Feelings, Food, Mom stuff, Royal Wedding | 1 Comment »

(via google images)

Last night I told Yogi Dad that I was going to get up at 4am to watch the Royal Wedding.  I don’t think he thought I was actually going to do it. 

I was prepared though.  After grocery shopping I stopped at Starbucks and got myself a venti Mocha with an extra shot to reheat when I got up- I figured a reheated Starbucks was going to be more enticing than anything else I was going to get at that hour.  I set my alarm clock for 3:45.  I fed Judah right before I went to bed in hopes he would stay asleep until I needed to get up.

It worked!  And I practically jumped out of bed all giddy with excitement like it was my OWN wedding day or something.

So there I was.  Me, the TV and all of Twitter.  It took me a few minutes to decide what coverage I was going to watch, but I finally just settled on CNN.  Judah woke up a few minutes before it started to *really* get good and my mocha was just what I needed.  Judah was a star nurser and went right to sleep, it was just like when he was wee.

I watched, I teared up, I turned it off at 9 so the boys could watch Super Why.  I took this energy and was productive.  Dishes!  Laundry!  I scrubbed out both cat boxes and cleaned the baby gate!  I made the most delicious apple pancakes and served them on my fancy pink crown plates!  We played and had lunch (also served on pink crown plates) and then I turned it back on and re-watched the entire thing when the boys went down for their naps.  I was sorting diapers, so I was still getting something done! 

It was kind of awesome. 

I remember watching Prince Charles and Diana get married with my Grandma, but it must’ve been a rerun years later.  I wouldn’t remember that from when I was three…would I?  Maybe they replayed it when her boys were born.  When Diana died I remember watching hours and hours and hours of coverage in my best friends dorm room in college.  We talked about using our student loan money to fly to England for the funeral.  For about 6 seconds.  We weren’t crazy.  Although it was before classes started, so we could have been back in time.  Just sayin’.

I don’t know what it is.  I don’t pay attention to The Royals any other day for the most part.  I haven’t watched or read any of the coverage leading up to this wedding, but somehow, it was always something I was going to make time in my day for.  You can count on me tuning in for any and all future weddings, births, coronations, funerals…I’ll be there.

For the record, I loved the lace, I loved the veil, I loved the uniforms and the boys choir and the kisses and the stolen glances and the song they played during the signing of the registries….I pretty much loved it all.


Friday Favorites

Posted: April 8th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Cleaning | Tags: City Living, Cleaning, Friday Favorites, Goals, Mom stuff, Moving | 2 Comments »

I just hired movers for our move in May.  I’m feeling like a real grown-up adult!  I’ve never moved with actual movers before.  Rented a U-Haul?  Yes.  Hired someone to do the heavy lifting?  No.  So  now my mind is on this move.  Every time I’ve moved in the past 15 years, I’ve worked for Target.  I had a steady and free stream of boxes at my disposal.  I really should have stocked up before I left because now I get to hunt for boxes.  I may be hiring movers, but we’ll be doing the packing and I’m not going to buy boxes.  I’m just too cheap for that.

So what does this all have to do with Friday Favorites?

Cleaning and Cleaning supplies.

This place is going to sparkle when we leave- I have allotted 2 weeks to move- 1 week to move miscellaneous before the truck move, and one week after to clean.

I am serious about this.

Sparkle.

These things have worked in the past and I hope they continue to do the trick. I’m working from the worst cleaning jobs on down to the easiest. Just in case I am not as serious as I think about this whole cleaning thing I have looked up some numbers for domestic cleaning services in Bournemouth as a back up.

Oven: I don’t think I have ever cleaned my oven as long as I’ve lived here. Gross I know, but it’s not a fun job….so there’s that.

Hardwood Floors: we have a lot of them- a lot as in all except the bathroom and kitchen. I like the look of hardwoods but combined with radiators and nothing circulating the air around we get a lot of dust and dirt, everywhere. I haven’t used this product but it’s got some good reviews and I haven’t found the “one” hardwood product that I can’t live without just yet. So we’ll give this one a go.

Radiators: There has got to be some sort of tool for this. A-HA! There is:

Walls and wood work: I think I’m going straight up vinegar and water here. I’ll hit it with the dry swiffer first to get rid of the dust/ cobwebs and then go at it with some old t-shirts.

Bathroom: I grew up with Softscrub and I HATE it with a passion. I feel like you are forever rinsing and drying and wiping up that white residue, I just can’t do it. I do however, like Comet. And this is even better than Comet because it smells so lovely. I’ve been using this to clean my tub weekly and I’ve never enjoyed cleaning my tub so much! Can I say I’m going to miss my tub? My big huge cast iron claw foot tub? I’m going to miss it. Probably more than any other thing in this house.

Of course I’m a total cleaning supply junkie and I have a whole cabinet full of things from which to choose from in a pinch. From bleach and Fabuloso to Method and 7th Generation, with a little elbow grease (and maybe a few cold ones) I think I can do this.

Now, who wants to watch my kids?


The Great De-Cluttering {aka 2,011 in 2011}

Posted: March 9th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 2011 in 2011 | Tags: 2011 in 2011, Blog Hop, Cleaning | 7 Comments »

First off.  I’d like to note that I cannot take credit for this adventure in which we are about to partake.  That would go to Melissa over at The Betty and Boo Chronicles.  I was cleaning out my Google Reader while waiting for the bus and skimmed her post and started Tweeting about doing this almost immediately.  After even more scrolling through my reader I found ANOTHER blogger  Jen, doing 2011 in 2011 who pointed me out to Kids *Stuff *World who’s got a list of people doing it…I’m obviously late to the party.

We are going to get rid of 2,011 things, from our house, in the next 297 days. 

That’s less than 7 things a day.  SEVEN.

I’m guessing the majority of that will happen before we move by the end of May.  So help me God if I bring the majority of it with me I just might go crazy.

We have stuff.  Lots and lots of stuff.  Like stuff coming out of every nook and cranny.  You know what we DON’T have enough of?

Closets.

We currently live in the Victorian duplex with the super awesome cast iron tub that we started renting way before there was a notion that we might have kids.  Obviously, three kids later, we are bursting at the seams.  Although I loved this placed back then (and would no doubt still love it if we were just a couple with pets) it’s not working for us.  We will be moving.  By the end of May*.

Our house, is cluttered.

We have two kids with autism.

Clutter and autism don’t seem to mix.  Clutter is a distraction. I need my kids to engage, not get thrown off by the overflowing basket of toys in the corner. I have tried numerous times to rid the house of things that have no business still being here like the pile of cool patches for clothes that have since been grown out of and the one sandal that I have sworn the match is in this house somewhere. I have been looking for it for two years. You get the picture.

I have no delusions that I will be living in a sparse, modern home at any point in my life, but I’d like to be able to put things away and not have everything  in a perpetual state of being “out”.

So 2,011 things.

My Rules:
– I am not going to include mail or things that come in the mail or things that are trash to begin with.
– I am not going to include open boxes of food ( crackers cookies etc.) that we toss.
– I AM going to include anything that we donate to a food shelf or anything that is unopened but EXPIRED that we toss.

Maybe I will keep track of the mail/ magazine/ loose paper issue by pound….we do have a lot of THAT sort of thing.

So link up if you want to join in the fun. I’ll probably post my progress in starts and fits throughout the year. I will see if the Linky is a good fit for this, if not I’ll just discontinue it. I will keep the Linky open for the entire month for now. I may create a button. I’ve never created a button. Just one more thing for my Blogging To-Do list…

The Slacker Mom

Thanks Jen!

So, to start off I’m going to list the contents of a bag of clothes I have ready to donate. It’s been sitting by my front door for well over a month now, waiting to grow legs and walk itself to the closest Salvation Army all by itself no doubt.
– 1 Long wool skirt
– 1 pair of khaki capris
– 2 pairs of workout pants
– 2 tanks
– 2 sweaters
– 3 long sleeve tops
– 3 “dressy” tops
– 2 short sleeve tees
– 1 fleece pull-over
____________________
– 17 items/ 1994 to go

*Seriously, if you are looking to rent out or know someone looking to rent out a lovely house in a quiet neighborhood of Minneapolis…I am all ears.