Chalk Art

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Chalk Art

Let me draw something for you

Just wait and see

It’ll be something new

You’ll be so proud of me

The ground will be my canvas

We’ll share it with the world

The colors will be vibrant

Every single line and swirl.

A year ago, I drew

a plain happy face,

warranting many snapshots.

Nowadays,

my art has evolved

comprised of such details

including a diamond wand.

You asked me if I was done

and I said, “Not yet,

she needs eyelashes

and rainbow lipstick.”

Finally,

I dust chalk off my hands and knees

and sit proudly

beside my art while saying, “Cheese!”

– Angelica Mercado

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Hello everybody!

I hope you guys are well.

We had a great week-end with nice weather and as you can see some fun at the park with chalk!  I always bring a Ziploc bag full of jumbo size chalk so my daughters can let their creativity soar out.  My oldest daughter impressed me with how far she’s come along with drawing.  It was a lot of fun watching her and my youngest, who is currently drawing simple happy faces as well as shapes.  My husband joined in the fun and afterwards we treated the girls with a trip to McDonald’s for some happy meals.  It was a great day.

Take good care all.

Until next time…

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DIY PAPER BOWS

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.

I absolutely love making my own paper bows so when I came across this wonderful DIY tutorial at http://www.howaboutorange.blogspot.com/2013/04/how-to-make-paper-bow.html I knew that I would be sharing it with you immediately.  It’s that awesome for all you crafters out there.

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There’s a free PDF template at the link posted above.  I used several colorful cardstock papers to make my bows, but of course you can always use regular paper or simply print out the template on cardstock, because it’s sturdier, and trace onto any other paper like newspaper, magazine pages, scrapbook paper, etc.  The possibilities are endless and here’s a great idea for a one of a kind paper bow: print the template on regular paper, have your child design it (color it in), cut and put it together. They’ll be smiles all around!

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Paper cutting frenzy

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I decided to use brads at the center to hold my bows together.  Then I wrapped and glued the final piece.

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I literally squealed with delight.

This project and its end result made me really happy.

I love these bows and can’t wait to make more.  Many, many more!

THANKS to Jessica Jones at http://www.howaboutorange.blogspot.com/ for creating this template and offering it to everyone.  I’m a new fan and follower!

Take good care all.

Until next time…

A NOT SO PUZZLING EFFECT

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A not so puzzling effect

Her eyes dart

from piece to piece

looking for a place to start.

She takes a quick glance to see

exactly what she’s looking for.

I can’t take my eyes away

from her beautiful face.

As it comes alive with a series

of emotions

such concentration,

undivided attention,

then, sheer frustration.

“Help me mommy,” she says.

“Look for a corner,” I offer.

She has to do it on her own.

And when she fits the final piece

seriousness instantaneously

shifts into happiness

for us both.

– Angelica Mercado

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Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.

My children are a great inspiration and when a moment occurs, in which I want to describe and keep it forever in words, I toss procrastination to the side (along with some housework, I’ll get to it eventually), sit down, and just write.  Some days it’s hard to get the right words down quickly when you have a 3 and 5-year-old beckoning every two minutes so I have to hit SAVE and walk away, but lately I’ve been getting back to my writing instead of letting it sit there in oblivion.  It’s a good feeling to get back to it.

Thanks for visiting!

Take good care all.

Until next time…

Happy Earth Day!

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Hello everybody!

I hope you guys are well.

Last week, on Wednesday, I picked up my daughter, Olivia, from school and she came home with a plastic cup of dirt.  Inside the cup, there was a tiny plant growing, and my daughter was super excited.  We placed the cup in direct sunlight and she has given her plant a little bit of water in the morning, every day since.  Look at her small plant so far.  Not so small anymore!  It’s such a beauty and the joy that it brings my daughter is priceless!

Happy EARTH day!

Take good care all.

Until next time…

JELL-O NO BAKE OREO DESSERT

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.  My, ever-curious-with-food, husband came home two weeks ago with this Jell-O No Bake Oreo Dessert.  NOT exactly healthy, but worth trying, at least once.  All you need to add is butter and cold milk.

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Inside the box you get the crust, filling, and crushed Oreo topping.

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First you mix the crust with the butter (melted) and press down into the pan.  I used a spoon.

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After mixing the filling with the milk, you add half of the crushed Oreo topping.  Whenever I’m baking and I want to get every single drop of the batter, I always use a silicon spatula.  This gets EVERYTHING out of the bowl! 🙂

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Then you pour into your pan and refrigerate for an hour or more.  You can use the rest of the crushed Oreo topping immediately after pouring it into the pan or if you want it to be crunchy, pour it on after refrigerating it.  I did the latter.

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The dessert was good, but personally it was too sweet for me so I’m not going to be making it again.  I definitely prefer the Jell-O Lemon Meringue Pie Dessert that I featured in a previous post.

Take good care all.

Until next time…

Never falter

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Never Falter

Can’t look away

from the images

that display

smoke rising,

pure chaos,

people dying,

sidewalks splattered

angrily in red.

The moment captured.

Press play

and watch as lives are forever changed.

Look away,

We can’t.

Three people gone,

So many wounded.

What’s going on?

Evil has to be stopped.

And it will be

because even among the disarray

heroes emerged.

We’ll never falter.

We’re Americans.

And everyone, in the world,

knows that.

– Angelica Mercado

Hello everybody.  I hope you guys are well.  I penned this poem yesterday (I’ve been on a non-stop news reading frenzy) and it’s dedicated to the people of Boston.  The above picture is dedicated to my daughter, Olivia.  We walk under this gorgeous tree every day on our way to school.  It’s her favorite and she marvels at its beauty and stature.  I’m planning on having it printed big, framing, and placing it on her wall for her birthday so she can delight in its glory every day!

Take good care all.

Until next time…

Clothes, shoes, space…oh my!

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.

I’ve been tackling and frustratingly looking for space to put away the clothes and shoes that no longer fit my oldest daughter, but are still in wearable condition for my youngest.  Yes, I could always buy a bigger bureau, but then that would allow more (unnecessary) clothes to come into the house.  My way of corralling my kids’ clothes and keeping things at a minimum is by having a medium size bureau.  It has four drawers and I separate things between my girls by two drawers each.  I have their short and long sleeve shirts, leggings, skirts, shorts, pajamas, socks, underwear, and undershirts in this one bureau.  Nice and tidy (until tornado hubby comes along looking for something!)  There’s also a SMALL (NYC, enough said) closet, a storage chest (mainly used for winter pajamas and baby clothes that I simply couldn’t part with, for example, their first outfit worn home from the hospital), and this gem that was being tossed out by a local pharmacy and my husband and his brother-in-law were walking by just in time.  They were gracious enough to give him every single little piece that came with it, including the shelves, nuts and bolts!  🙂

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Just in case you don’t know, that’s my oldest daughter’s name above, Olivia, so it was meant to come home with my husband.  It used to house body and hair care products for sale, but after my husband drilled holes and inserted a dowel, it became a small, open closet.  We put up some of the shelves for shoes and left the bottom open in order to place a basket (Ikea) for additional shoe storage.  I hang up my oldest daughter’s school uniform and my youngest daughter’s spring/summer dresses in this closet.

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As for the shoes that my oldest has outgrown, but are still good yet too big for my youngest, I save them in wide, delivery boxes.  Recycle, reuse (both, shoes and boxes).  In order to know what’s inside after I taped up the boxes, I take a picture (inserting sizes on the pic), print it out and tape it onto the box.

Why do I do this?  So I can stay sane, save money, and help the environment (less trash for the landfills).  Extra space would be nice, but I feel more comfortable using what I already have instead of buying new or more.  I also like to pass things down as my children grow out of them.  I usually distribute between my sister-in-law (who has a daughter one year younger than mine), family members in Puerto Rico, the donation bin two blocks down from my home, and the church my parents attend.

Thanks for visiting and viewing.

Take good care.

Until next time…

A glance at last weeks school lunch from home

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.

Here’s a glance at what I made/put together for my daughter, last week, for her school lunch.  We try our best to send her off to school with a nutritious, balanced meal.  I’m glad to say that there are more days where her food containers come home empty.

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I try not to repeat the main dishes, but if I have to it’s usually the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or the pizza bagels, which are my daughter’s faves.  I give her nuggets once a week because we all know process food is not exactly healthy.  I also abide by the  recommended serving sizes.  In regards to the serving size for the nuggets I take one away (serving size is 5 nuggets, but I give her 4) because I also give her tater tots (serving size is 9, but I give her 6).  It’s all about moderation, plus including the veggies and fruits that we need.

Take good care all.

Until next time…

A moment of silence and a cry to STOP!

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.

I just want to take a moment and say that yesterday was a very sad day in Boston.  As news poured in and shocking images appeared online and on the TV, we could only watch with horror and wonder what kind of monster would do this to innocent people.  It rocks your mind and just doesn’t make any type of sense.  My heart goes out to EVERYONE.  May those who were lost, Rest In Peace, and their loved ones find solace with family members, friends, their community, and beloved memories.  May those injured, both emotionally and physically, my thoughts are with you and I hope with time you are able to recover.

Take good care all.

Until next time…

Celebration Recap

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.

My youngest daughter is officially three and we had a birthday week-end celebration with friends and family.  We broke things down by celebrating her actual birthday on Friday, just us in the house.  I wanted to make a small (I like the Jiffy cake mix), funfetti cake

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and it was the perfect time to try out these Bake-Even Cake Strips (Wilton) that I’ve seen online and found on sale at AC Moore craft store.

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I didn’t realize I went overboard on the sprinkles until…

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…the cake was done and I flipped it out of the baking pan.

As you can see the cake strip (around the pan) worked, but there were noticeable differences other than the cake dome that appears when you don’t use this strip.  The cake sticks to the side of the pan more and the bottom was moist when I took it out.  I like that it baked even, but I don’t know if I’m going to use the strip again.  We’ll see.

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I melted a little bit of the Betty Crocker Rich & Creamy Chocolate frosting (15 seconds in the microwave) in a glass bowl and this made things easy to spread on the cake.  I really don’t like when the cake crumbs combine with the frosting.  I threw a little bit more of sprinkles, yes more, on the frosting and then…

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…the #3 candle.  My daughter loved her funfetti cake.

I chose the theme of the cartoon Bubble Guppies featured on Nickelodeon.  I decorated with free printables from nickjr.com and purchased a huge #3 balloon.  Balloons are always a huge hit.

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The banner, poster, and pin the tail game were cute, easy, and fun to put together.  Just go to nickjr.com and click on birthdays and you’ll see all of the themes and projects available for each.

The following day was Saturday and we invited friends and family with kids to join us at an indoor playground/arcade (funtopiausa.com).  We paid for the kids admission, tokens for them to play the arcade games, and food (pizza, popcorn, and drinks).  We stayed for about two hours and when it was time to go I gave each invited guest a goody box filled with candy, toys and stickers.

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My aunt had given me these boxes about a year ago and I was so happy to finally have a reason to use them.  I glued the images of the Bubble Guppies, which I printed out at nickjr.com, and made the middle image with my daughter’s name.  I then took the glitter glue in blue and green and made swirl lines like waves on the boxes.  I then filled the boxes with candy (skittles, smarties, Tootsie rolls, lollipop, rose ring pop, candy bracelet, and sixlets) from orientaltrading.com along with little toys like a mushroom spinning top (not shown) and Easter Pop-Ups, which are a lot of fun for children and adults.

We ended the day with my husband’s homemade piñata, which he made with a balloon, scraps of paper, and modge podge.

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My husband had fun making this and the kids had a lot more fun whacking the heck out of it.

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On our last day of celebration (Sunday), my family came over and we sang happy birthday once again with another cake (Oreo No Bake Dessert), chocolate lollipops (vanilla, dark mint, & peanut butter), and great, homemade food.  Thanks Mom and my aunt Aida!

I was pretty happy with this plan of action for celebrating my daughter’s birthday.  Many people get really stressed out planning birthdays and end up spending a lot of money.  I didn’t want the headaches or the empty wallet.  No offense to anyone who goes big, because of course, if I had space and extra money, I would be singing a different tune, but at this moment minimal is the way to go.  So one birthday down, one more to go.

Take good care all and thanks for visiting.

Until next time…