May 2014 - Rachel Teodoro

Garage Sale Finds Friday

Welcome back to another week of garage sale finds Friday.
Where I show you, my favorite garage sale finds from the week.
I wasn't planning on buying this coffee and tea service set,
but I did a quick google search on my phone while I was in this guy's driveway and  made garage sale mistake number one.
I didn't get all of my information, and thought that this tea service was actually all silver, not just silver plated.
My google search had me thinking that I had at least $600 on my hands at a cost of only $35.
I snatched the Chippendale set up with the intention of selling it, but once I got home, I realized that the set is actually silver plated and worth far {far far} less than what I initially thought.
Oh well.  Even the garage sale pro's make mistakes!

I made up for it by making a major score at another garage sale.
I have been on the hunt for old Reader's Digest books.
I happened upon a sale that had box fulls.
For free!

The books with their covers on look like any ordinary book,
but once you peel that cover back, each book has an amazing design that is drool worthy!

Aren't they amazing?!

Let's just take a second and check out these book covers because seriously, 
these prints are so ahead of their time.

Reader's Digest, you are amazing.

This same garage sale, also had free sheet music.
And not just any sheet music, vintage sheet music.
I use sheet music for crafts all of the time so I couldn't pass this stack up.

Plus, some of the sheet music covers are works of art in and of themselves.

Check out those awesome worn pages!

So while I didn't strike gold with my silver {ha!}
I did score some pretty awesome free finds.
What did you get this week?

How to paint perfect lines on textured walls

This post brought to you by FrogTape Brand Painter’s Tape. All opinions are 100% mine.

Every wall in our whole house is painted in the same khaki color.
All 3300 square feet of it.

After nearly four years, it's gotten a bit, how should we say it?
Old? Monotonous? Boring?
Yes, all three!

I've been needing a little change, so when I had the opportunity to try FrogTape® textured surface tape, I knew I needed to give it a try... I just wasn't quite sure where.

I settled on my laundry room.
With three active kids and a dog, I spend a lot of time in the laundry room!

My laundry room is nothing special.
It does have a sink {that rarely gets used} but for the most part, it's just pretty functional.
And in this case, functional is code for boring.

Just this past week, I was able to take my laundry room from boring to bold!
I'm excited to show you how you can paint straight lines without the paint bleed on your textured walls.

When I grew up in the Midwest, I never saw a textured wall that I can remember.
They seem to be common here on the west coast.

If you have ever painted a textured wall, you will wonder why.
{and not in a good way}
Paint bleeds through the small gaps and leaves you with a less than stellar line.
But not any more!

FrogTape® has done it again and come out with a new tape made just for textured surfaces complete with liquid paint block sealer.

FrogTape® is the only painter's tape treated with PaintBlock® technology.
PaintBlock® is a super absorbent polymer that reacts with latex paint and instantly gels to form a micro- barrier that seals the edges of the tape, preventing tape bleed.

This tape bleed is common when painting on textured walls, so FrogTape® took this technology one step further and added a liquid PaintBlock® sealer.

If you thought FrogTape® was awesome before, you should try it now!
It's extra awesome!

I started by having my engineer husband figure out where my lines should be.
Anytime there is math involved, I think it's best to consult with him.

We {and I use that term loosely} decided that the lines should be on the wall at 14", 27", 40", 53", 66" and 79". 
It's like those "find the pattern" questions that you get asked in math class.
We started at 14" up on the first line and then have a line every 13" after.
The wall height didn't break up into an even measurement which is why they aren't all 13" apart.

We {again, we meaning him} used the biggest ruler known to man 
{seriously, this ruler should be off the highway next to the biggest yarn ball ever and be listed as a tourist attraction}
and marked out where the lines needed to be on the wall.

I used the pencil lines on the wall that my hubby made and strung out the tape.

If you notice the x's, you may question why.
It's genius people.
The x's are the lines that aren't being painted.
It was a lifesaver because then you don't have to think.
Thinking hurts your head and no one wants that.

Once your lines are level on your wall,
take a straight edge {I used my Hilton Honors card--it's not doing a lot for me otherwise} and went over each of my tape lines, making sure the bubbles were smoothed out and the edges were sealed.

Use a damp cloth to activate the PaintBlock® technology.

The final step in sealing your lines is to squeeze on and apply your liquid PaintBlock®
It goes on milky like glue so you can see where you have applied it.

Let the liquid PaintBlock® dry for 15 minutes and then you are ready to paint.
I painted three coats of white paint on the walls, waiting for each coat to dry to the touch.

Once your final coat of paint is dry to the touch you can peel up your FrogTape®
I seriously did an audible gasp and then proceeded to sound like an infomercial to anyone with in earshot 
when I peeled the tape up.
I couldn't believe what a straight line the FrogTape® made.

Look at these lines!

Sometimes with painters tape on textured walls you end up getting lucky and are actually able to paint a straight line without the paint bleed,
but there is no way you can get the results across the whole wall if you don't use FrogTape® for textured walls.

I actually love walking down the hallway and seeing my new fresh laundry room.

I can't even believe how straight these lines are!
You can get more FrogTape how-to here.

Don't forget to follow FrogTape® on Twitter for the latest news, inspiration and updates.
What are you waiting on?
Go create with FrogTape®!
Visit Sponsor's Site

10 books you should read this summer

It's no secret that I love to get lost in a good book.
Summer is the perfect time to model how important reading for pleasure is to your children.

I have complied 10 books that I have loved and fully recommend adding to your summer reading list.
1. The Invention of Wings
2. Where'd You Go Bernadette
3. The Fault in Our Stars
4. The Rosie Project
5. Orphan Train
6. The Light Between Oceans
7. Unbroken
8. These is my Words
9. Gone Girl
10. A Long Way Gone
These are the books I have on my list that I want to read
1. The Husband's Secret
2. The Star Garden
3. The Kitchen House
4. Sarah's Quilt
5. Perfect Peace
6. Wonder
7. The House Girl
Anything I should add?
I'm always looking for a good book!

Unstoppable every day-- what my day as a stay at home mom looks like

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and U by Kotex but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #UbKKmart

Have you ever written down you schedule?
You know, sat down and looked at what your day looks like.
I don't do it often but when I do, I look like a crazy person!

I am a stay at home mom of three kids.
I'm a wife, chef, chauffeur, personal assistant, nurse, counselor, police officer, mediator, laundress, personal shopper, errand runner, play date coordinator, tutor and blogger.

24 hours rarely seems like enough hours in the day.
I typically start my morning with an hour long workout at 6:30 am.

At 7:40 I come home and pack lunches for two younger kids for the day.
I make breakfast, sign consent forms, check over folders, wash dishes, and start laundry.
At 7:55 I take my daughter to school.

I come home from drop off number one, take a shower, discuss airplanes, minecraft and Calvin and Hobbes with my 8 year old while putting on my make up, do my hair and get dressed.

I do a quick pick up of the house, make sure beds are made, put away laundry from the day before, and if I have time I vacuum.

At 8:50, my son and I put on our shoes, leash up the dog and head to school.

I walk the mile to and from school and return home to put the laundry in the dryer, clean the kitchen, vacuum the floors {if I didn't get to it}, make phone calls, check and return e-mails, update the blog, photograph images, run errands, make appointments, fold the laundry, go to the grocery store, prep dinner, clean the house, and weed the garden.
It's super important for me to be visible in the kids schools so I am in the classroom or in their school around five hours a week and doing school related "business" another 3-5 hours of the week.

I usually find time to eat lunch, but often times it's on the go, or standing up while I bake snacks for lunches or make cookies for bake sales.  

If I have time, I will create a new project, craft, blog, return more e-mails and manage the family calendar.

At 2:45, I walk to retrieve my daughter from school with the dog. 

At 3 my oldest son returns home and I make them an afternoon snack.

At 3:30, I head out for our final walk of the day to pick up my youngest son from school.

It's not unusual to have a dentist appointment, or an after school activity we have to prepare for so I help the kids get started on homework, or we take a break and play outside for a little bit.  I finish the laundry that I started {it never ends}, wash out the kids lunch bags, read over the kids homework and check in their folders.  

It's inevitable that some kid will need to run an errand somewhere in the afternoon.
{I forgot the poster I need for my project tomorrow...or I told my class I would bring in two dozen cookies}
and the dinner I prepped earlier, needs to be finished.

Nearly every night a home cooked dinner is on the table at 5:15.
We eat dinner as a family and then play chauffeur to the various activities
{youth group, swimming, gymnastics, boy scouts}
If we don't have an activity planned, we usually spend the evening as a family.
Perhaps a family bike ride, or a walk to get ice cream.

At 8 we start the night time routine.
The 8 year old reads a book with mom or dad and has snuggles, and at 8:30 my daughter heads to bed.

Lights out is at 9:00 for the younger two.
At 9:30 my oldest son needs picked up from his youth group
and at 10 we make a lunch for him for the next day.

My husband and I read in bed for about a half an hour until we pass out, and do all of this all over again!

If you are a mom, you know, every day is different, and some days are more chaotic than others.
But I need to be unstoppable every day!
Which is why I trust U by Kotex.

It's the perfect product to keep me covered no matter what I am doing or what I am wearing. 
 It helps to keep me prepared for anything!

Join K-Mart's shop your way rewards program and save $3 when you buy two UbK products.
Be unstoppable no matter what your day looks like!

Garage sale finds Friday

Welcome back to another week of garage sale finds Friday.
Where I share with you my favorite garage sale finds.
I happened upon a huge neighborhood sale and scored some unbelievable items!
My kids love garage sale season because every weekend is like Christmas for them!
Aside from the $4 Burton ski jacket, the $5 Hudson jeans {my favorites!}, and a second unicycle that the kids have been begging for, I picked up these fun items too.
This step ladder for $2.
Let me remind you about the lettered step stool that I made two years ago from a garage sale find.
I'm thinking I will do the same thing with this one.

I love old molding, don't you?!
Not quite sure what I will do with these pieces, but for $7 for both of them,
I had to have them.

And finally, this twin bed.
I actually bought it in it's original wood state and painted it grey already.
We don't need a bed, but I couldn't pass this one up for only $5.

That's what I found this week.
How about you?
What did you pick up?

How we get our tween and teenager to still hang out with us

I don't mean to be, 
but somehow my very existence just seems to be an embarrassment to my older kids.
My oldest son is 15 and my daughter just turned 12.
It doesn't seem to matter what I do,
I almost always get an eye roll or look of disgust from one of them.
As kids get older it's natural that they don't want to spend as much time with you.
I totally get that,
but there are times that I want to spend time with them.
We have a spread of age ranges in our kids of about 7 years.
As my oldest son has gotten older, it seems like that gap widens.
His interests are so much different than my younger son and while the middle daughter can swing either way, liking what the older brother likes and also liking what the younger brother likes, 
it's often hard to find something that pleases all three.
One of our favorite things to do as a family is have family movie night.
We don't get to have family movie night very often.
Our schedules are quite busy,
but when we do find ourselves with a free evening it's usually the first thing the kids think of to suggest.
Thankfully, with Netflix we have found some great titles that are age appropriate and that all three kids can enjoy.  There are even great titles that I remember from when I was their age.
On those rare nights when it's just the older kids around,
there are even great titles to pick from too.
We just watched Forest Gump.
Hard to believe that movie came out nearly 20 years ago!
Movie nights are great.
We have the chance to slow down, and I can 
sit close enough to my big man child that I can tousle his hair and share a bowl of popcorn with him.
I didn't even notice a single eye roll.
Disclaimer: I am part of the Netflix stream team.  In exchange for my blog post, I received a month long subscription to Netflix.  All opinions are 100% my own.  I wouldn't tell you about something that I didn't love.

Why music lessons for kids are important and an opportunity for lessons in your home

From the time my kids have been in the womb, they have been listening to music.
I used to play classical music through my discman's head phones
{yep, I am that old!} 
into my big 'ol pregnant belly.
I took music classes with my kids and have been singing them made up songs about anything and everything.
There were songs about getting dressed, waking up from our naps and poop.
Lot's of songs about poop.
My oldest son Aidan was six when he started taking music lessons.
He wanted to start on the guitar.
I had two other small children at home when he started lessons, 
so it was easiest for me to pay a little extra and have a local guy come to my house to teach him.
Aidan moved on to the clarinet in the fifth grade, while continuing to play the guitar for jazz band and then switched to the drums when he was in seventh grade.  Aidan's only been drumming for a few years now, but because he could read music when he started lessons it allowed him the opportunity to pick up drums much quicker than he would have otherwise.
My daughter Isabella is constantly singing.
She loves folk music mostly.
So does her mom.
My youngest son is 8 and would love to play the drums like his big brother.
He's picked up the guitar a few times, but he seems to have rhythm on the drums like his brother.
I have a background in child development and during my studies at Purdue University, the benefits of children {and adults} learning and playing music were certainly not kept a secret.
Studies show that music trains the brain for higher forms of thinking and learning music can boost a child's IQ.  Math and music are intertwined.  I know we all wondered {o.k. maybe it was just me!} why we had to learn fractions and thought I'm never going to use this, but musicians use it every day. Rhythm and pitch are two of the most common elements of music and they are best described using mathematical concepts.
Music not only helps children academically, it also helps them in developing patience 
{it take a lot of practice to perfect a skill, or a song, or a beat}
and creates discipline for practicing on their instrument.
Practice is the only way to improve in most skills and carving out time in a child's day for practicing their instrument is important.
Now that you understand why music lessons are so important to us as parents,
I want to introduce you to a company that I had the opportunity to try out first hand.
Lessonface is an on-line music lesson site offering lessons for all ages and skill levels over live video.
My 8 year old son Owen, tried out two drum lessons with an amazing drum instructor named Shawn.
We are in the Seattle area, Shawn is in North Carolina.
Isn't technology great?!

I know a thing or two about drum lessons.
I have been sitting through regular drum lessons on a weekly basis for the past 2 years with my older son.
I was very impressed with lessonface and in particular Shawn and the things that he was able to teach while we sat in the comfort of our own home.

We simply went to the lessonface site, 
found the instrument and skill level we were interested in and were matched with an instructor.
Once a time for a lesson was set up, we installed the software about 15 minutes prior to our first lesson and received several pages of music for Owen's first lesson through our lessonface dashboard.

Owen could pull up the music on the one side of the computer screen while his instructor was on the other side.  After our on-line lesson, we could print out the music and use it to practice.

During Owen's first few lessons, he learned how to read drum music, was made aware of whole notes, quarter notes and half notes and learned various counting patterns.
Shawn was very patient with Owen, he praised Owen when he mastered something and used positive affirmations to correct Owen rather than to discourage him.  I was quite impressed!
Summer is coming, and I know that as mom's we are looking for activities to keep our kids busy.
Maybe you have been thinking about music lessons for your son or daughter.
Lessonface is kind enough to offer a coupon code for $15 off your first lesson.
Try a lesson and see what you think.
Simply use lf15off at checkout.
Lessonface is also offering a giveaway for a spot in a summer guitar class {geared for teens 13-17} called the Power of Three Chords.
It's easy to enter. Simply comment below.  A winner will be selected one week from today.
If you don't have a child that is in the age range for the summer guitar class,
no worries!

You can also win a $60 lessonface gift certificate!
Simply enter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Good luck!
And happy tunes to you!
disclaimer: I was given two free music lessons to try from lessonface.  All opinions are 100% my own.  I won't tell you I love something if I don't.
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