Turn It Up Tuesday – #78

Welcome to Mother 2 Mother and the 78th week of Turn It Up Tuesday! I’m looking forward to another amazing week of great posts. Last week, we had an awesome time on Turn It Up Tuesday with 446 links – another amazing week! We’d like to thank each and every one of you for making every week so amazing! Keep sharing your amazing posts with us here on Turn It Up Tuesday!
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Turn It Up Tuesdays is all about being happy, excited, energetic…and having fun! Link up your favorite posts (old or new) and meet some awesome bloggers in return! Link up your funny stories, DIY posts, recipes, mommy moments — anything at all. We want to laugh, be entertained, be inspired, and have a good time!
Thanks so much to everyone that joins us each week and makes this blog hop the best that it could be!

SPONSOR OF THE MONTH

MOMS-2-e1406504042463
Andrea Keeney is a writer, blogger, mother, and wife. She is the creator of the blog, Parenting with Parents as well as the author of the book, Moms: As Elite as the C.I.A….Well Almost. When she isn’t pursuing her dreams of writing she is taking care of her three small children.
Attention! There is an elite group of women walking freely among the average citizens of the world. These freakishly instinctive beings are capable of physical, mental, and emotional acts of greatness. They tend to appear irritated, exhausted, and are almost always bombarded by very tiny renegades who are whining and/or yelling. These women come in many shapes and sizes, however they all respond to a single name: Mom. If you know one of these women, if you are one of these women, or if you are going to be one of these women, you need this book!
Are you looking to get your blog or website in front of numerous people per week? Do you enjoy Turn It Up Tuesdays? Interested in having your blog or website featured for an entire month?
Then, sponsor Turn It Up Tuesday for a month by clicking here!

 

Welcome the lovely ladies of Turn It Up Tuesday!

1
2
(from the top – left to right)
Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures | Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings | Jessica from The Wondering Brain | Cathy from A Peek Into My Paradise | Rhonda from Mother 2 Mother | Jillian from Baby Doodah | April from April Noelle | Tina from The Happy Creations | Melissa from The Coupon Chronicles | Cindy from Mom Maven | Tiffany from MrsTeeLoveLifeLaughter | Kelly from Making-More | Yolanda from That’s Mashed Up | Tenns from Bliss & Faith | Silvie from My Silly Little Gang | Mari from Living in Mommywood | Rose from What Rose Knows | Kimberly from Keystrokes by Kimberly | Chelsea from Mommie and Wee | Nancy from Afro-Chic Mompreneur | Kelly from Mum-bo-Jumbo | Zografia from Bisozozo | Elaine from Ramblings of a Bad Domestic Goddess | Lisa from Blogghetti | Latisha from Ask Latisha

And welcome our awesome guest hosts for March!

TUT Mar 2015 (1)
(from the top – left to right)
Danielle from insearchofthe25thhour | Ginger from Does Your Sister Have Normal Hair | Cathy from Brand New Mom Blog | Marie from Just Plain Marie | Marose from Simple Pero Rock | Victoria from Giveaways 4 Mom

Interested in being a guest host for the month or becoming a permanent co-host?

Complete the form here! Monthly co-hosts will be chosen on a first come first-serve basis. 

Here are the Featured posts from last week!

GT5000-Front-Close
Marose chose Be aware of the money vampires from Simple Pero Rock.
Using-Google-To-Organize-Your-Blog-Planning-Blog-Posts
Cindy also chose this post. “I chose this post because it is genius! I started using a Google spread sheet this year to track my posts but I like the visual of a calendar better. Just reading this post I felt liberated and I’ll be starting this method in April.”
CreamyTomatoBasilSoup
Lisa chose Creamy Tomato Basil Soup & Homemade Garlic Basil Croutons from Juggling Act Mama. “I love tomato soup and Ang’s recipe is easy, delicious, and the garlic basil croutons are awesome. Perfect cold weather comfort food.”
DIY-Ranch-Seasoning
Lisa chose DIY Ranch Dressing from All She Cooks. “Jessica’s recipe for DIY Ranch Seasoning is perfect for any dish or dip that uses the packaged dressing. I love the DIY seasoning mixes because you know what’s in them and you control the amounts to your tastebuds. I can’t wait to try this!”
Elaine also chose this post. “I have been looking for good seasoning recipes as part of my healthy eating plan and this is the best Ranch recipe I have seen.”
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Kelly chose Paper Easter Basket Crafts from Crafty Journal. “Noreen has shared just about every paper basket possible that both adults and kids alike can create for Easter. I love how just almost all households would have the materials on hand to make them. Simple, inexpensive and a great activity for all the family.”
how-to-set-up-rss-feed-with-mailchimp
Kelly chose How to Set Up Your RSS Feed with MailChimp from My Craftily Ever After.  “Setting an RSS feed has been on my list of things to do for some time but being a novice, I didn’t really know how to do it with Mailchimp. Ashley’s simple step by step tutorial has helped put this task back to the top of my to do list.”
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Elaine chose 6 Tips for Healthier Grocery Shopping from All Things Lifestyle. “Good solid tips for healthier grocery shopping.”
April also chose this post. “As I try to eat healthier, choosing how I shop has become a priority, Karon at All Things Lifestyle really lays out some simple rules to follow while grocery shopping.”
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Rhonda chose Baby Chicks from Hell from Kari. “I loved this post. I’ve heard of dishes being a disaster as they’re being prepared, but never an adorable and delicious dish that was turned into one. Too funny!”
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Tenns chose Homemade {Stress Relieving} Foot Soak from View from the Fridge. “I love a good foot scrub and its awesome to come across one that I can make myself. It also gives me a reason to try out essential oils, something I’ve been meaning to get into for a while.”
double your page views
Tenns chose 10 Ways to Double Your Page Views from Classy Yet Trendy. “I’m always excited to come across blogging tips and learn something new. This was a really round up of different things bloggers can do to drive more traffic to their blogs. You can never have enough tools in your box!”
Tiffany also chose this post. “What amazing tips to help gain page views when it can honestly feel like a harder task than what it needs to be…with these steps you can do it each day with not too much extra effort.”
Natasha also chose this post. “I have been very interested in tips to take my blog to the next level. These are some amazing tips!”
This post also received the most clicks.
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Jillian chose 20 (Less) Extreme Cheapskate Ways to Save More Money from Pretty Simple Ideas. “I chose this post because my husband and I are working on creating a better budget and sticking to it. This post provides tips to save even more money! Just what the doctor ordered!”
7-steps-to-decluttering-and-learning-to-let-go
Jillian chose 7 Steps to Decluttering from Just Another Mom. “We’re going to be moving soon, and I will absolutely need to declutter. This post gives some great tips and examples on how to go about decluttering without becoming overwhelmed.”
Floating-Artwork
Zografia chose DIY Simple Floating Artwork + Free SVG Cut Files from Hey, Let’s Make Stuff. “I loved this idea! I am definitely trying something like this!”
How-to-Increase-your-Adsense-Earnings-by-A-LOT-with-this-simple-trick-683x1024
Zografia chose How to Magnify Your Adsense Earnings with this Simple Trick from Live Randomly Simply. “We never stop learning! That’s a trick i will be using!”
Natasha also chose this post. “Amazing and simple trick! Thanks so much for sharing!”
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Victoria chose Top Favorite Yoga Poses from The Crafty Side of Sarcasm. “I chose this post because I recently have gotten back into yoga and I was curious about the different yoga poses.”
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Victoria chose 10 Ways to Save Money This Spring from Earning & Saving with Sarah Fuller. “I chose this post because who doesn’t like saving money? I am on a debt free journey this year and I need all of the money saving tips that I can get.”
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Tina chose No Sew Bandana Bib + Funday Monday from Lipgloss and Crayons. “What a beautiful bandana bib. A simple super cute bib, easy to make and adorable!!Thanks so much for sharing!”
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Tina chose Rustic Serving Tray with Gold Arrow Accent from Simply Designing with Ashley Phipps. “I love this project, pure DIY that looks real good!! I love this tray , great as a gift!!I’m making one!!”
DIY-Lush-4-in-1-Bath-Bar-Recipe-from-FrySauceandGrits.com-
Mari chose DIY Lush 4-in-1 Bath Bomb Bar Recipe from Fry Sauce and Grits. “My two choices this week are Courtney’s bath bars I love cute and useable stuff in my bath so this is a must try for sure.”
Banana-Caramel-French-Toast-5
Mari chose Banana Caramel French Toast + Big News! from Annie’s Noms. “I loved Annie’s French toast because of caramel and bananas mix! I can’t wait to try these at home.”
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Latisha chose Basic Pancake Recipe – Fluffy and Delicious from The Wilderness Wife. “I love pancakes and between the photo and the description this blogger uses to describe this pancake makes my mouth water. I definitely want to try this recipe. Those pancakes look like they would put boxed pancake mix to shame.”
Homeschool-Kindergarten.-What-Subjects-to-Tech-and-For-How-Long-@-Tinas-Dynamic-Homeschool-Plus
Latisha chose Homeschooling Kindergarten : What Subjects to Teach and For How Long? from Lina’s Dynamic Homeschool Plus. “I am homeschooling a Kindergartener right now. I found this so helpful, to let me know if I am on the right track. I agree with everything said.”
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Ginger chose Beaded Wreath from our very own Zografia from Bisozozo. “This is a simple yet really elegant decorating idea. I also love that it is so easy to customize.”
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Ginger chose Paper Flower Backdrop: Flower Variations from Ash and Crafts. “This is a simple yet really elegant decorating idea. I also love that it is so easy to customize.”
Stop by and show some love to our featured bloggers this week! I’m sure they’d all appreciate it!
If you were featured above, feel free to share the badge below with pride on your blog or website!
Epic Mommy AdventuresWhat a beautiful bandana bib. A simple super cute bib, easy to make and adorable!!Thanks so much for sharing!
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And the Best of the Best is…

We have a 3-way tie this week…so all three posts have won best of the best!
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7-steps-to-decluttering-and-learning-to-let-go
7 Steps to Decluttering from Just Another Mom
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Show some love to our Best of the Best bloggers this week!!!!
Best of the Best Bloggers – make sure to showcase the button below on your blog!
Epic Mommy Adventures
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Giveaways!

And now for our giveaway of the month!
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From Sarah at Grace in Oils: I am so excited to partner with Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures for this awesome giveaway! We are giving away three books & three Young Living essential oils. I originally got started with Young Living and essential oils in July 2014. I did a lot of research before choosing this company. I run a blog Grace In Oils (www.graceinoils.com) where I talk about my research, how I use essential oils, and other fun things! My goal with my blog and my Young Living business is to help bring essential oils into every home. I want everyone to know they can use essential oils! While I encourage research I also offer resources to those I enroll to help empower them to get answers to their questions. I chose Young Living due to their Seed to Seal guarantee and I go into that on my blog. If you are interested in starting your journey with Young Living I would LOVE to have you be a part of my team. I fully support those I enroll via online groups, an e-series, and more! I also offer a really amazing Welcome Kit free to those who choose to become a Wholesale Member with Young Living via purchase of a Premium Starter Kit (https://beta.youngliving.com/vo/#/signup/start?sponsorid=1938897&enrollerid=1938897).

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Also, make sure to enter to be 1 of 3 winners to win $500 in the Luck of the Irish Giveaway! Enter to win by clicking the link above or clicking on the image below. There are only a couple of days left!APIMP-LuckOfTheIrishGiveaway-1024x1024 So now that you’ve met our Sponsor for the month, our hosts and guest hosts, our Featured, the Best of the Best, and our giveaways,

let’s get started!

  • Show some love to your hosts and co-hosts simply by following them on social media and leaving a comment so they can follow you back.
  • Link up as many posts as you’d like! The more, the merrier!
  • Check out some of the other posts and make some new friends!
  • Grab the button below and showcase on your sidebar! Invite your fellow bloggers to join the fun!
Epic Mommy Adventures

 

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Link up your posts, make some friends, and earn the chance to be featured or become the Best of the Best on Turn It Up Tuesday! We will feature the favorite posts each week! **Disclaimer: Adding your link to this link party gives permission to Epic Mommy Adventures, along with co-hosts, guest hosts, and participants of Turn It Up Tuesday, to share your posts and pictures via social media and as features, roundups, etc. with an explicit link back to the original source.**

Never miss another Turn It Up Tuesday! Sign up for reminder e-mails!

Interested in reading all of our favorite posts on Turn It Up Tuesdays – past or present? Or do want to know if your post was featured before we go live next week? Follow Natasha Peter’s board Featured on Turn It Up Tuesdays! on Pinterest.

Printable St. Patrick’s Day Scrapbook Layouts

scrapbook layouts

scrapbook layouts, scrapbook layout ideas, printables

I made these printable St. Patrick’s Day scrapbook pages and wanted to share them with you. Here’s my wish for each of you: 


For each petal on the shamrock
This brings a wish your way –
Good health, good luck, and happiness
For today and every day.
~Author Unknown

Sunday’s Best – #11

Welcome to Week 11 of  Mother 2 Mother’s Sunday’s Best Linkup We’ve started our Spring Forward theme. Warm weather is around the corner, I saw Robins in my yard this week. Last week I had 6 inches of snow in my part of the world, so I’m hopeful that I there will be lots of green soon.  


Lets celebrate the arrival of warm weather with your Easter posts, crafts, recipes, gardening, decorating ideas, room makeovers, tablescapes, spring cleaning and organizational tips. Blow the dust off your old posts and link those too. Don’t have posts that fit into the theme, link up whatever post you would like to share. We would love to have SEO, blogging, and parenting tips, DIY projects, homesteading, homeschooling, and your posts on life.  Your linkups and giveaways are welcome too. Anything goes here, as long as it’s family friendly. 








Each week your hosts will select their favorite post and it will be featured the following week. An image from your post will be used on my blog the following week with a link back to your blog. Be sure to check back to see if you’re a Sunday’s Best featured blogger. All Featured Bloggers will have their posts Pinned to the Sunday’s Best Pinterest Board.    

If you are interested in becoming a Sunday’s Best host, please contact me for details at rhonda@mother2motherblog.com  


                                             Your Sunday’s Best Hosts:

            Rhonda – Mother 2 Mother                Kim U. – Pinterested Parent         Kim M. – Life In A House of Testosterone


  
Here’s the rules, please connect with us on social media before you leave or subscribe/follow our blogs :  

Mother 2 Mother: Please like my 
Facebook Page, follow me on Twitter,  Google+, PinterestBlogLovin or subscribe/join my blog on the right before you leave.   



The Pinterested Parent: Please like Kim’s Facebook Page, follow her on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Bloglovin before you leave.  


Life In A House of Testosterone: Please like Kim’s Facebook Page, follow her on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Bloglovin, or Instagram before you leave. 


Mother 2 Mother Blog

Please help us grow by placing the Sunday’s Best button above on your sidebar or in your Link Party lists/directory. I appreciate your help in promoting the linkup with Re-tweets and shares. If you are selected as a Featured Blogger, let your readers and followers know that you were featured on Sunday’s Best.   



Now lets party! There’s a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Be sure to enter our Luck of the Irish Giveaway it ends 3/17.  The pot is worth $1500 and will be divided between 3 lucky winners. Click on the link and enter. It could be your lucky day.   





The Sunday’s Best Posts are:


Kim U. selected I Said Lies We Tell Ourselves from The Mad Mommy 












I selected Horses and Hairbows from Sequins In The South 






Kim M. selected 20 Copycat Recipes  from All She Cooks 



All of the posts were great, and I appreciate each of you linking up. I would like to invite all of you back to linkup your post(s) again, it could be selected this week. While you’re here take a minute to visit these great blogs. It’s a great way to meet and connect with new bloggers. Be sure to PIN or share any posts that you like, we all appreciate a little love. 




How To Grow Bigger Tomatoes

kitchen gardening, growing tomatoes, gardening

Over the years, I’ve gardened by trial and error. I’ve become successful with growing tomatoes, garlic, onions, beans, pepper, squash, zucchini, and watermelon over the years.  These items are the staple of my garden for the most part. Today I’m going to share how I’ve managed to achieve large, beefy, and juicy, tomatoes. Some of my heirloom tomatoes weigh up to 1 – 2 pounds each.  Check out my other backyard vegetable gardening tips before you leave. Here are the steps that I take to grow big, juicy tomatoes:

 



1.  Tilled garden soil –  It all starts with your soil. I row garden on a 20 x 30 plot, so I till my garden and I till deeply. Many gardeners use the lasagna method, turned soil method or raised beds because they don’t require tilling. I garden as my grandfather did, so I’m old school.   Before the garden is tilled, I add in manure, which can be purchased from your local garden center.


2Organic compost – I use only organic material in my garden. This is composted leaves that took about 2 years to break down completely. Many gardeners call it Black Gold. I mix the compost into the soil before placing my tomato in the hole and side dress the plant with a nice helping of this compost. If you don’t have organic compost use dried, crushed eggshells in the hole before planting along with a dose of manure. The eggshells provide calcium.

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3.  Plant deeply
– I remove the bottom leaves from the plant. Only the top leaves should be exposed as shown above.  You want your plant to have deep roots, so the deeper you plant the better.

 

natural garden fertilizer, gardening

4.  Provide natural fertilizer – Coffee grounds are an excellent natural fertilizer for tomato and pepper plants. I mix a few tablespoons in with my organic compost, above, and side dress around the entire base of the plant. Coffee grounds attract earthworms, which are great for aerating the soil, and keeps away snails and slugs which are detrimental to your plants. If you don’t have organic fertilizer, purchase Miracle Grow tomato fertilizer and spread around the base of your plants.

gardening, tomato gardening

 

5.  Weed Control – I use straw or leaves that I’ve collected during fall around my plants to keep weeds down and to retain moisture. Keeping the weeds under control is important, you don’t want them taking energy away from your plant.
gardening, companion planting
6.  Companion Plant – I use marigolds between my tomatoes and pepper plants. They’re great for pollination, which your plant needs to produce healthy fruit.
 
gardening, gardening weeding
7.  Proper Spacing – You will need to reach around your plants for care and harvest so make sure you give each plant adequate space. I create paths between my rows by layering newspaper or cardboard boxes that have been broken down. I cover the newspaper or cardboard with leaves or straw. This also reduces the amount of time that I spend weeding too.
8.  Water and fertilize regularly – Add 2 teaspoons of Epsom Salt to a gallon of water and give your plants a good drink when you initially plant and regularly thereafter.  Be sure to water at the base of your plant only, you don’t want garden soil splashing on it. You can use a spray bottle to spritz the foliage of your plants with the Epsom Salt mixture too. Also works with peppers.  I found CVS Epsom Salt on sale last season for half price, so I purchased several cartons.  It will make enough spray to last through several growing season.
I hope you find my tips on growing bigger tomatoes helpful. Try them, and you will grow bigger and juicier tomatoes too. Be sure to subscribe to my blog for additional gardening tips and posts and follow me on social media.
 
You may also like:  How To Stake and Cage Tomatoes
                                         Planting and Harvesting Garlic

Inspirational Quote – Fallen Snow

quotes, printables

Turn It Up Tuesday – #77

Welcome to Mother 2 Mother and the 77th week of Turn It Up Tuesday! I’m glad you can join us for another fun week of great posts. Last week, we had an awesome time on Turn It Up Tuesday with 439 links – another amazing week! We’d like to thank each and every one of you for making every week so amazing! Keep sharing your amazing posts with us here on Turn It Up Tuesday!
300px+turn+it+up+button+copy
Turn It Up Tuesdays is all about being happy, excited, energetic…and having fun! Link up your favorite posts (old or new) and meet some awesome bloggers in return! Link up your funny stories, DIY posts, recipes, mommy moments — anything at all. We want to laugh, be entertained, be inspired, and have a good time!
Thanks so much to everyone that joins us each week and makes this blog hop the best that it could be!

SPONSOR OF THE MONTH

MOMS-2-e1406504042463
Andrea Keeney is a writer, blogger, mother, and wife. She is the creator of the blog, Parenting with Parents as well as the author of the book, Moms: As Elite as the C.I.A….Well Almost. When she isn’t pursuing her dreams of writing she is taking care of her three small children.
Attention! There is an elite group of women walking freely among the average citizens of the world. These freakishly instinctive beings are capable of physical, mental, and emotional acts of greatness. They tend to appear irritated, exhausted, and are almost always bombarded by very tiny renegades who are whining and/or yelling. These women come in many shapes and sizes, however they all respond to a single name: Mom. If you know one of these women, if you are one of these women, or if you are going to be one of these women, you need this book!
Are you looking to get your blog or website in front of numerous people per week? Do you enjoy Turn It Up Tuesdays? Interested in having your blog or website featured for an entire month?
Then, sponsor Turn It Up Tuesday for a month by clicking here!

 

Welcome the lovely ladies of Turn It Up Tuesday!

1
2
(from the top – left to right)
Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures | Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings | Jessica from The Wondering Brain | Cathy from A Peek Into My Paradise | Rhonda from Mother 2 Mother | Jillian from Baby Doodah | April from April Noelle | Tina from The Happy Creations | Melissa from The Coupon Chronicles | Cindy from Mom Maven | Tiffany from MrsTeeLoveLifeLaughter | Kelly from Making-More | Yolanda from That’s Mashed Up | Tenns from Bliss & Faith | Silvie from My Silly Little Gang | Mari from Living in Mommywood | Rose from What Rose Knows | Kimberly from Keystrokes by Kimberly | Chelsea from Mommie and Wee | Nancy from Afro-Chic Mompreneur | Kelly from Mum-bo-Jumbo | Zografia from Bisozozo | Elaine from Ramblings of a Bad Domestic Goddess | Lisa from Blogghetti | Latisha from Ask Latisha

And welcome our awesome guest hosts for March!

TUT Mar 2015 (1)
(from the top – left to right)
Danielle from insearchofthe25thhour | Ginger from Does Your Sister Have Normal Hair | Cathy from Brand New Mom Blog | Marie from Just Plain Marie | Marose from Simple Pero Rock | Victoria from Giveaways 4 Mom

Interested in being a guest host for the month or becoming a permanent co-host?

Complete the form here! Monthly co-hosts will be chosen on a first come first-serve basis. 

Here are the Featured posts from last week!

modern-kitchen-makeover-on-a-budget-header
Cindy chose Modern Kitchen Makeover on a Budget from No Small Life. “I am currently addicted to 3 home reno shows on HGTV. Even though we gave our kitchen a new coat of paint a few years ago and like my cabinets I am dreaming of new counter tops (my 30 year old formica ones are so so bad) and a backsplash. The 23year old vinyl flooring needs to be retired too. I love the way this post had great kitchen reno pics and photos of her progress. It allowed me to dream a bit.”
702parkproject-apps
Cindy chose 8 Free Apps I Can’t Live Without from 702 Park Project. “I am always looking for new apps for my iPhone. In this post she listed some that I already can’t live without and some new-to-me apps that I can’t wait to try!”
Rose also chose this post. “I chose this post because it introduced me to apps that I have not yet discovered!”
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Lisa chose Decoupaged Easter Egg Craft from AttaGirlSays. “This is such a great idea! It would be a great project to do with kids, too. I love this and intend on trying this out as cute centerpiece this Easter. Amy’s idea from the story she grew up with and passing the story on to her son is a wonderful keepsake of those memories.”
Lemon Scones Poster
Lisa chose Lemon Scones from A Sprinkle of This and That. “Christine’s Lemon Scones have me drooling. I’ve just recently fell in love with making (and eating) scones. I haven’t made lemon yet and her recipe is super easy to follow and the pictures of the scones are just perfect.”
5-things-WAHMs-wish-their-friends-understood
Victoria chose 5 Things The Work-At-Home Mom Wants Her Friends To Know from Organized Home Organized School. “I chose this post as my favorite because I am a work from home mom. I lost a very close friend because of my decision. She felt that since I worked from home I was always available to chat and have unexpected drop by visits from her when this was not the case.”
amari-suit1
Victoria chose 10 Things I Want My Son To Know from Kiddie Matters. “I chose this post because I am a mom of three boys and I could relate to everything that this mom wanted her son to know.”
chickendinnersMarose chose 7 Simple Dinner Recipes With Chicken for $7 or Less from Little House Living. “I just like easy recipe.”
The-Dos-of-Blogging-Part-2-BusyBeingJennifer.com_-1024x768
Marose chose Do’s of Blogging {Part 2} from Busy Being Jennifer. “I’m getting back to blogging, so I needed this to refresh and give me new ideas.”
playdough
Marie chose Homemade Playdough from illywho. “This is one of those classic parenting recipes that so many people have forgotten how to make. Fabulous.”
Cheeseburger-Sloppy-Joes-from-Budget-Girl
Marie chose Cheeseburger Sloppy Joes from Budget Girl. “I’m not the only one who wants to have burgers but truthfully won’t be standing there forming patties! These are easy and look delicious.”
FarmhouseDecor-253x1000
Rose chose Farmhouse Design Style Ideas for Your Home from Chocolate and Sunshine. “I chose this post because I’m in love with Farmhouse style sand decor. I find Farmhouse style to be classic and I think it’s going to be around for a very long time!”
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Zografia chose Build Your Blog Linky Party List. from Sequins in the South. “That’s a great resource for every blogger! Lot’s of link parties for blog promotion and meeting new bloggers!”
This post also received the most clicks.
DIY-projects-collage
Zografia chose Crafts: Easy DIY Projects from Creating & Co. “So many great ideas in one post! Loved it!”
Lemon-Cake_5718
Ginger chose Lemon Cake with White Chocolate Mousse Frosting {+ Dessert for Two Cookbook Giveaway} from Spoonful of Flavor. “The photos were great and the cake looks delicious.”
Portrait Of A Successful Business woman
Ginger chose 4 Ways to Simplify Natural Hair For The Busy Female Entrepreneur from Afro-Chic Mompreneur. “The advice was really good.. Simple ideas with videos attached were easy to follow and I could relate to the information.”
75-Free-Printable-Scavenger-Hunts
Silvie chose 75 FREE Printable Scavenger Hunts (& a HUGE Cash Giveaway) from My Joy-Filled Life. “We love doing scavenger hunts as a family and these are great ideas!”
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Silvie chose Easter Kids Table Setting from View from the Fridge. “This will be my first year doing an Easter kids table and so I really enjoyed this post!”
Tina also chose this post. “What a beautiful way to set the kids table this Easter, so cute and creative!Thanks so much for sharing:)”
improve-blog-photos
April chose How to Improve Blog Photos from Serendipity and Spice. “As I’m trying my blog to the next level, I’m always on the lookout for good, easy and inexpensive tips that will help me take a little a long way.”
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Marie chose Sweet Potato Skillet with Bacon and Greens from Swirls and Spice. “I loved Julia’s Sweet Potato share because it looked yummy, quick and easy. It also was the first recipe in a while with Sweet Potatoes that I would actually try. That’s how awesome it looks.”
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Marie chose Spring Pancakes from The Pinterested Parent. “I picked Mia’s mom because the shapes of those pancakes were a dream. They looked so pretty almost made you not want to eat them but I surely would. Great treat!”
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Tiffany chose Things I wish someone told me before I became a Stepmom… from Practicing Normal. “Love this post and the insight Mariet gives to such a misunderstood role of parenting.”
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Stacey chose How To Make Extra Money with Vacation Photos from MBA SAHM. “What a wonderful idea! I am always looking for ways to make a few extra dollars and since I have a vacation coming up I am definitely going to give this a try! Thank you so much for sharing!”
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Tenns chose Make Your Own Lush Bath Bombs from Pretty Simple Ideas. “I love Lush bath bombs, but not the price! They’re a real treat and fun to use, however. It’s awesome to know I can make something similar at home, so when I’m not “treating” myself, I can still indulge in a lovely bath!”
Stop by and show some love to our featured bloggers this week! I’m sure they’d all appreciate it!
If you were featured above, feel free to share the badge below with pride on your blog or website!
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And the Best of the Best is…

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10 Things I Want My Son To Know from Kiddie Matters
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Do’s of Blogging {Part 2} from Busy Being Jennifer
Show some love to our Best of the Best bloggers this week!!!!
Best of the Best Bloggers – make sure to showcase the button below on your blog!
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Giveaways!

And now for our giveaway of the month!
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From Sarah at Grace in Oils: I am so excited to partner with Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures for this awesome giveaway! We are giving away three books & three Young Living essential oils. I originally got started with Young Living and essential oils in July 2014. I did a lot of research before choosing this company. I run a blog Grace In Oils (www.graceinoils.com) where I talk about my research, how I use essential oils, and other fun things! My goal with my blog and my Young Living business is to help bring essential oils into every home. I want everyone to know they can use essential oils! While I encourage research I also offer resources to those I enroll to help empower them to get answers to their questions. I chose Young Living due to their Seed to Seal guarantee and I go into that on my blog. If you are interested in starting your journey with Young Living I would LOVE to have you be a part of my team. I fully support those I enroll via online groups, an e-series, and more! I also offer a really amazing Welcome Kit free to those who choose to become a Wholesale Member with Young Living via purchase of a Premium Starter Kit (https://beta.youngliving.com/vo/#/signup/start?sponsorid=1938897&enrollerid=1938897).

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Also, make sure to enter to be 1 of 3 winners to win $500 in the Luck of the Irish Giveaway! Enter to win by clicking the link above or clicking on the image below. There are only a couple of days left!APIMP-LuckOfTheIrishGiveaway-1024x1024 So now that you’ve met our Sponsor for the month, our hosts and guest hosts, our Featured, the Best of the Best, and our giveaways,

let’s get started!

  • Show some love to your hosts and co-hosts simply by following them on social media and leaving a comment so they can follow you back.
  • Link up as many posts as you’d like! The more, the merrier!
  • Check out some of the other posts and make some new friends!
  • Grab the button below and showcase on your sidebar! Invite your fellow bloggers to join the fun!
Epic Mommy Adventures

 

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Link up your posts, make some friends, and earn the chance to be featured or become the Best of the Best on Turn It Up Tuesday! We will feature the favorite posts each week! **Disclaimer: Adding your link to this link party gives permission to Epic Mommy Adventures, along with co-hosts, guest hosts, and participants of Turn It Up Tuesday, to share your posts and pictures via social media and as features, roundups, etc. with an explicit link back to the original source.**

Never miss another Turn It Up Tuesday! Sign up for reminder e-mails!

Interested in reading all of our favorite posts on Turn It Up Tuesdays – past or present? Or do want to know if your post was featured before we go live next week? Follow Natasha Peter’s board Featured on Turn It Up Tuesdays! on Pinterest.

Time Management Tips for Meal Planning

meal planning

First, there never seems to be enough time in the day for everything that we need to do.  Do you agree?  Getting the children up and ready for school, fixing meals, managing our homes and holding down a full time job can stress anyone out.  However, I have found that planning meals can take a big load off my schedule and free up time.

The last thing that I want to do is spend time figuring out what I’m going to fix for dinner.  Especially after a busy day at the office.  I have found that planning my meals out for the week is a big time saver for me. Here’s a few tips that I use to save time during the week:

On Saturday’s I plan my meals for the week  – I focus on casseroles and crockpot meals mostly. I find this is the easiest route for me because I can make the casserole the night before and refrigerate it or put my meals in the crockpot.

Make a list of ingredients and head to the grocery store – Running to the grocery store after work or during the week can take up a chunk of time.  This can become stressful, especially when time is already lacking. Having ingredients accessible can relieve stress.

Include meals for the children while you’re planning – Having to come up with ideas and fix two different meals can be time consuming.  I fix mac & cheese ahead of time when the grandchildren are visiting. They love spaghetti salad, so I will chop the vegetables the night before or early in the morning and toss them into a storage bag. I just boil the noodles in the evening.

Meatloaf is another favorite. I make the meatloaf the night before and just place it in the refrigerator. I just pop it in the oven or microwave to warm while I prepare side dishes.

Wash dishes as you prepare your meals  – I have learned to wash dishes or load the dishwasher as I’m preparing my meals. This cuts down on the number of dinner dishes that need to be washed after dinner.  Most importantly, I always have a clean kitchen. Run your dishwasher through the cycle and unload it before you go to bed.

Use paper plates, cups and plastic utensils – If I’m really pressed for time, I resort to paper products. I can throw them in the trash, and that leaves clearing the table, putting away food and washing the main dishes.

During summer months fix light meals – Sandwiches and fresh fruit make their way to my table frequently during the summer. My family loves chicken and tuna salad. I can make garden and cob salads with fresh vegetables and that’s a meal while serving the grandchildren veggie pizza. Grilling in the summer is a good idea too.

Freeze meals – Preparing meals ahead and freezing them cuts down on time if you have the room. This idea is great for soups, spaghetti, chili, stew, and other cold weather meals.

Prepare snacks and desserts ahead of time – My grandchildren like a snack before bed. During the week, I make pudding or jello.  Apple slices with peanut butter also works. If they want ice cream I have the individual ice cream cups available so I don’t dirty bowls after the dinner dishes have been washed.  Cookies are great too.

Make a planner and place it in your kitchen – Seeing your planned meals helps you stay on track.

These are a few things that have worked for me. The biggest obstacle is figuring out what to fix for the week. Once you have your meals planned, decide if you can fix them ahead and freeze them or if you will preparing the night before. Once you get in the habit, it makes life so much easier.

Please let me know how you handle your meal preparation for the week or if you can add to my tips.









Sunday’s Best – #10

Welcome to Week 10 of  Mother 2 Mother’s Sunday’s Best Linkup We’ve started our Spring Forward theme. Warm weather is around the corner, so lets get those spring posts up.  I have about 6 inches of snow in my part of the world, but I’m hopeful that I there will be lots of green soon.  




Bring your St. Patrick’s Day and/or Easter posts to the party. Crafts, recipes, gardening, decorating ideas, room makeovers, tablescapes, spring cleaning and organizational tips are also welcome. Blow the dust off your old posts and link those too. Don’t have posts that fit into the theme, link up whatever post you would like to share. We would love to have SEO, blogging, parenting tips, DIY projects, homesteading, homeschooling, and your posts on life.  Your linkups and giveaways are welcome too. Anything goes here, as long as it’s family friendly. 


Each week your hosts will select their favorite post and it will be featured the following week. An image from your post will be used on my blog the following week with a link back to your blog. Be sure to check back to see if you’re a Sunday’s Best featured blogger. All Featured Bloggers will have their posts Pinned to the Sunday’s Best Pinterest Board.    

If you are interested in becoming a Sunday’s Best host, please contact me for details.  


                                             Your Sunday’s Best Hosts:

            Rhonda – Mother 2 Mother                Kim U. – Pinterested Parent         Kim M. – Life In A House of Testosterone


  
Here’s the rules, please connect with us on social media before you leave or subscribe/follow our blogs :  

Mother 2 Mother: Please like my 
Facebook Page, follow me on Twitter,  Google+, PinterestBlogLovin or subscribe/join my blog on the right before you leave.   



The Pinterested Parent: Please like Kim’s Facebook Page, follow her on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Bloglovin before you leave.  


Life In A House of Testosterone: Please like Kim’s Facebook Page, follow her on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Bloglovin, or Instagram before you leave. 


Mother 2 Mother Blog

Please help us grow by placing the Sunday’s Best button above on your sidebar or in your Link Party lists/directory. Tweet the linkup using the hashtag #SundaysBest. I appreciate your help in promoting the linkup with Re-tweets and shares.



Now lets party! There’s a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Be sure to enter our Luck of the Irish Giveaway.  The pot is worth $1500 and will be divided between 3 lucky winners. Click on the link and enter. It could be your lucky day.   





The Sunday’s Best Posts are:




Kim U. selected Math Frame Learning from Dabbling Momma 












I selected Spring Pancakes from The Pinterested Parent






Kim M. selected Serve It Hot Dips  from All She Cooks 



All of the posts were great, and I appreciate each of you linking up.  I would like to invite all of you back to linkup your post(s) again this week. While you’re here take a minute to visit these great blogs and connect. It’s a great way to meet and connect with new bloggers. Be sure to PIN or share any posts that you like, we all appreciate a little love.  




How To Stake Tomato Cages

staking tomato cages

 

The majority of the tomatoes that I grow are heirloom, which grow tall and become heavy. Because of the height and weight of the vines, I stake my cages down so they can support the plant and fruit once it is produced.  A flimsy tomato cage won’t do with these type of plants. Learned that lesson the hard way.   Before you leave, check out my other backyard vegetable gardening tips. 

 

staking tomato cages

 

Some of my plants have grown 6 – 7 feet tall, and have gotten heavy enough to topple my cages. Once this happens, it’s hard to pull the vines up without damaging them. My tallest cage is 5 foot, so they need some help in keeping them steady and strong enough to support the weight of the tomatoes on the vines.  My best and most sturdy cages were purchased from Tractor Supply. I went back to purchase more the next season, but they no longer carried them. As sturdy as they are, they still need to be staked.

Here’s my staking method.  Simple and budget friendly:

  • I purchased 6 foot fence stakes from Lowes.
  • After planting the tomato plant and placing the cage over it, I push 2 stakes deep into the ground directly beside the cage.
  • I tie the cage to the garden stakes with garden ties. You can purchase the ties from your local garden center. I buy the rolls. You will need them to tie up your tomato vines once they start growing.
  • For the heavier cages I used two stakes, but for the lighter and smaller cages I use 1 stake depending on the type of tomato I’m planting.
  • It’s important that you stake the cages when you first plant your tomatoes; otherwise, you risk damaging the roots of your plants.

The cages in the picture below, blue, red, light green and yellow, were purchased from Lowes. Pretty colors, but not the same quality as the ones from Tractor Supply even though they were the same price. Last year, I used the smaller cages for my hybrid tomatoes. Hybrids don’t get as tall or as heavy as heirloom tomatoes, but I still suggest supporting them. A strong wind can topple these cages and more than likely will damage your plant.

 

staking tomato cages

 

This is a picture of one of my heirloom tomato plants. You can see how thick the vines are on this plant. You can also see why it’s important to support the plant early. If you don’t want to spend money on garden ties, cut up old stockings or tee-shirts into strips. Any soft material will work.

 

stalking tomato cages

I planted 10 tomato plants last season, and found 3 volunteers. This is one of my volunteer tomato plants, below, before I staked, caged it and removed the weeds growing around it. This one needed support to keep it from leaning too. I’ve decided to leave my volunteers in the garden. If they produce I take the tomatoes to the local food bank.  They appreciate fresh garden vegetables in the summer. This year I made a pledge with Ample Harvest to take tomatoes, cucumbers, squash and zucchini to the food bank.

The dressing around this volunteer is from my homemade garden compost. It is so dark and rich it is unbelievable. This is why they call it Black Gold. Decomposed leaves make this compost Black Gold.  You can follow the link below if you would like to learn more about my Black Gold.

 

If you’re using containers for your tomatoes, I would recommend that you use a 4 – 5 foot garden stake to support your plant.  Local garden centers have them for a few bucks.  If you’re lucky enough to have bamboo around, cut a bamboo pole and use it in your container for support.

Stay tuned for my post on How To Grow Bigger Tomatoes next week. What are you planning to grow in your garden or containers this season?

If you like this post you may also like:  How To Make Garden Compost

 

Top 10 Baby Shower Games

baby showers, games ideas, best baby shower games



Planning a baby shower?  We know how stressful and time consuming it can be to put a baby shower together. You want it to be perfect, but time is not always on your side.  I have a few games that I have used at my daughter’s baby showers and they were hits.  I thought I would share them with you.  Feel free to select 2 – 3 games depending on the number of guests and your agenda. You can modify any of the games to suit your needs.  

For the Ice Breaker – Have each guest tell everyone how the know the Mommy To Be. This loosens everyone up so you can start the festivities. 





My Water Broke –  Fill ice trays with water.  Place a miniature baby, party favor, in each section of the ice tray and fill with water. The cube will contain the party favor when it freezes. Place an ice cube in a paper cup and give to each guest. Each guest must watch the ice cube and when it’s fully melts yell “My Water Broke.”  Be sure to give each guest their ice cube at the same time.  I purchased the party favors at Party City. 










What Mom Needs – Give each guest a sheet of paper and pencil.  Have each guest write down  a list of baby items Mom and Dad will need.  Give guests 5 minutes to complete.  The guest with the most items listed wins a door prize.  








Place 5 – 10 Baby Items in a Gift Bag –   Allow each guest to look into the bag for 5 – 10 seconds.  Have each guest write down the items that were in the bag.  The guest who has the most correct items wins. (Gift bag goes to Mommy To Be).








TIC-TAC-TOE – Have each guest make a grid for tic-tac-toe and list baby items on the grid.  The host will call out a list of baby items prepared in advance.  The guests who has 3 in a row must call out “Baby Tic-Tac-Toe” to win a door  prize.  







The Paper Bag –  Place several baby item in a sealed brown paper bag. Pass the bag to each guest and allow them to feel the bag for a 5 seconds. Ask guests to write down what’s in the bag.  The guest with the correct number of items wins.  (Goodies go to Mom To Be).






Drink Up – Place punch in several baby bottles.  (Purchase nursers from the dollar store for this game).  Gave a bottle to participating guests.  The winner is the guest who finishes drinking the punch first.  Not as easy as it looks!  Fun game





top baby shower games, baby shower bingo




Baby Shower Bingo – I purchased this game for my daughter’s baby shower. This is a fun game. Check on-line for printable Bingo cards and make your own game or purchase these ready made Bingo cards. Use pennies for the markers. 







Taste Test – Purchase 3 jars of baby food and remove the labels. Have each guest taste the baby food. The guest who has the most correct answers wins. 


baby shower games, top baby shower games





Scratch Offs – I purchased baby shower scratch offs for my daughter’s baby shower, and the guests really enjoyed them. You can order these on-line. The guest with the word “Winner” gets the door prize. 

Place Q-tips In A Jar – The guest who is closest to the number or who comes up with the number wins. 

You may also like:  How To Plan A Baby Shower


                                 15 Door Prize Ideas for a Baby Shower