Rachel Teodoro
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Getting the Most out of Your First Home Security System

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This is a sponsored post for MONI Smart Security. All opinions are 100% my own. 

One time, my dad was painting the dining room when two police officers suddenly appeared inside the house. We had just moved into a new home with a security system and had not a single clue how to use it. My dad had pushed the window open for some air and a silent alarm went off, alerting the police. This happened not just once but twice before my parents decided to cut the service. We just couldn't figure out how to make a security system work for our family; we had too many false alarms. Fast forward to several decades later, I now have a home and three kids of my own and it's my desire to make our house a safe and secure place for my family to land. We want to be able to have worry-free holidays away and feel secure when we are at home. I'll be honest though, there was a little bit of an adjustment, but here are some tips on how we learned how to get the most out of our first home security system. 

I Tried the Instant Pot and I am Not Sold

Last year for Christmas I got an Instant Pot. I asked for one after hearing everyone sing it's praises. It didn't take me long to unbox it, but then I struggled. I'm still struggling. If there is one thing I tell those who ask about it, it's that the learning curve is steep. So here is what I think about the Instant Pot one year later with my complete review.

How to Get Started with Your Letterboard

I've always been a fan of a good quote. In high school I filled my wall with some of my favorites. I think it's because I'm a big fan of words. I love how you can put together words and create a statement that is so profound that it makes you stop and think. I also like it when words can make you take a breath and laugh. It's probably why I have been loving this letterboard trend. I just jumped on the bandwagon and in case you did too, I'm going to share some tips on how you can get started with your letterboard. I know...probably my first step would be to get some punctuation! Just ignore my lack of a question mark will ya.

DIY a Modern Tree Stump Natural Wood Lamp

I was wandering the aisles of Target like any suburban mom does and I saw a wood vase just sitting there. It was telling me that it wanted to be a lamp. Well, it didn't speak audible words, I'm not crazy. But I looked at it and turned it all around in my hands and was like where the heck is the rest of this? It was just darn near begging to be turned into a lamp. There was a little knot in the bottom back of it that had a hole that would be perfect for the cord to go through and dang, it looked like something I would find in a high-end store. I just knew I could make it without the high-end price and that is what I did. Well, I didn't as much as I instructed my husband to make it. But I supervised. I love how it turned out and wouldn't you know it, a quick google search found similar modern teak lamps for hundreds and thousands of dollars. Now, I wouldn't spend that on a lamp, but you get the point. Why not DIY one and get the look? And that is what I'm going to do. I'll show you step by step how we created this modern tree stump teak lamp and how you can make your own.

My Mom's Classic Banana Bread Recipe

I remember when I was a freshman in college, my mom came up for a visit and brought a loaf of banana bread. It was gone in a matter of minutes. I never realized how good it was until I was eating dorm food and I had a more refined palate towards anything that didn't taste like cardboard apparently. So maybe that doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement, but I promise you, this classic banana bread recipe is the only recipe you will need. It's always been a crowd favorite and my family often requests it. In the past week alone, I've made four loaves and not a single piece has gone to waste! 

I think some of the best recipes come from vintage cookbooks. I'm especially fond of Betty Crocker cookbooks. This one was a hand me down from my mom. Some of the pages are sticking together and you can flip through and find coupons slipped inside from 1970, but the one recipe I flip to time and time again is this classic banana bread recipe. I'm calling it my mom's classic because this is the recipe she used and now I've passed it on to my family. I promise you, your family will love it too!

vintage betty crocker cookbook

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