Thursday, February 20, 2014

A Gem at the Bottom of the Barrel

A couple years ago, I documented my attempt at a no spend month. I wasn't entirely successful, as I found myself making excuses to eat out with friends, ergo spending even more money than I would have on groceries.

Well I had a quite large, unexpected expense at the beginning of February (Prius batteries are expensive, yo!), and I decided to give the no spending month another try. Now at the beginning of the month, my cupboards were already bare, so I purchased the following:

18 eggs
1 jar of peanut butter
1 bag of fresh spinach
3 bananas
1 bag of flour
1 box of spaghetti
1 package of shredded mozzarella

I've gone out to eat twice. Once, I did not pay (ahem, #blushing), and the other was a dinner I've had planned for the last month.

And that's been it since February 1st. And I've been making it work. My meals have been less than exciting, and I haven't eaten meat in a couple weeks, but I'm okay with that. Especially because I discovered the most amazing substitute for PB&J. Now I don't have much meat, but I do have A LOT of jam, so much that I've actually gotten sick of it. So I had to make a change for lunches this week. I looked no further than my pantry and a beautiful, glistening can of sweetened condensed milk.

To meet the sandwich of your dreams, take two slices of sourdough bread.  Spread one with peanut butter and the other with a heavy helping of the SCM.  Join the slices together in holy matrimony, let the sandwich sit out for a few hours, and then devour. I'm not claiming this to be the healthiest alternative to jam, but it sure is delicious. The SCM pairs nicely with the peanut butter, but the best part is the soaked through bread. Hmmm...SCM french toast, anyone? Hello, Saturday morning breakfast!

Necessity truly is the mother of invention. Either that or just getting sick of eating jam every day. I also consider austerity a mother of creativity. Speaking of, my mom is doing fabric fast, and it seems she's been very successful with creative use of what she has. You can follow her crafting on Studio Adventures.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Gold Medal Refashion

I got sucked into ice dancing this lazy Sunday afternoon (Yes, I agree.  Whhhhyyyy???  But it happened.)  I'm officially over Candy Crush.  (That is, until I'm not anymore.)  So I found myself looking for something to do.  A huge pile of potential refashions languishing in my sewing room shouted out to me, so I went foraging.  I actually can't even remember where I bought these pieces (perhaps Bargain Barn of Bartlett), but they went very quickly from drab to fab. 

I attacked the t-shirt first, turning it into a tank top. As you can see, I used an existing tank as the pattern and just sewed new seams. I didn't even bother hemming the neckline or arm holes, as it's jersey. We'll just see how long it lasts. 

For the skirt, I ripped out the back zipper, took it in about three inches, sewed the zipper back in and hacked off a couple feet off the bottom. Overall I'm very pleased with the look. 

This is probably how I'll style it. Note, I turned the couple feet I hacked off from the bottom into an infinity scarf. So easy! 

Valentine's Day 4.0 (!)

Another year, another Valentine's on the Patti Wagon. You can read up on past Clayton family V-Days here and here and here. I had been toying with some ideas over the last couple weeks, and then thankfully, I was hit with two no snow snow days last week. I was able to work on my cards and get them in the mail. 

Remember this power tool tease shot?
I sawed a heart out of some scrap wood and came up with this card for my dad, a life long lover of puns. 

Keeping with the wood theme, I made this for my sister.

The puns began to get painful, so I made this scratch off card for my mom. I printed the card on photo paper and then taped over the words with clear packing tape. I mixed together two parts paint and one part dish soap and painted over the tape. My test run scratched right off, so I'm hoping the final version didn't fail me. 

Although I do enjoy the creation of Valentines, that pales in comparison to receiving them. This year saw a strong showing from all members. 

From my sister, 10(!) year old Hanukkah gelt! 

From my dad, a pun, of course. 

And from my mom, something artsy, but this year with a very topical reference to my stick blender

I hope y'all had a great Valentine's Day! If you didn't get me a present, wood you keep reading the Patti Wagon? 


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

No Snow Snow Day, How Do I Love Thee?

And what better way to celebrate than with a breakfast pizza breakfast in bed? (Fried egg on pizza is officially >>>>>)

So apparently it snowed in North Mississippi last night. While we saw none of it in Memphis, I will totally take a snow day, especially after a month of snow day teases. I have scientifically determined that 33 degrees and raining is the worst weather ever. 

So on this no snow snow day, I thought I'd update my blog with a little of this and a little of that. 

1. More bulletin boarding, yesplease. I worry this blog is slowly morphing into a bulletin board blog, but that doesn't stop me from participating in my one true love. With Black History Month in progress, I did two MLK themed boards. 

2. I have been transportationally challenged for the past 10 days (#priushospital), and with the worst weather ever, what better opportunity to watch a new TV show?  I am always a fan of raunchy comedies, and Workaholics does not disappoint. The 90s references and puns are great, and I always like seeing comedies with real life friends (It's Always Sunny, for example.)

3. Valentine's Day is Friday, so all you Pattiwagoneers know what that means! Homemade V-Day card post is imminent. I broke out the power tools for this year's cards! You can reminisce with the Clayton family tradition from 2013 and 2012