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Friday, June 28, 2013

Finally Friday {Take 10}

Happy Friday y'all!!!  We have a busy weekend coming up and our To-Do List is a mile and a half long!  

We're just going to drop in today and give you a pool update.  If you've been following along for awhile now, then you know that Charlie's dreams came true and we bought an above ground pool.  We bought a used pool.  Which means we had to figure out how to set it up.  

I set out to Facebook and asked our friends for advice.  It was about half and half.  Half said it's not too bad.  Half said not to attempt it.

We're DIY bloggers.  And, Charlie is pretty darn handy. <----- don't tell him I said that...

So, of course we assumed we could handle this.  Charlie and I watched a few zillion youtube videos and thought we were pro's by the time install day came around.  My dad and my sisters boyfriend came to help.  

We were successful in ground prep and having everything level.  That was no problem.  

Then, it was time to set up the pool wall.

It went downhill quick.  It was our ultimate DIY fail.

We'd been outside in the scorching sun for a few hours at this point.  We'd drank a few gallons of water and our skin was burnt to a crisp.  It was awesome.  Not.

We clearly had no clue what we were doing and our 2 weeks spent watching youtube videos was a complete waste of time.  Every time we had about 4 foot of our pool wall standing, a gust of wind would come through and knock it out of the track.  We were running around like complete idiots trying to catch this darn pool wall before it fell to the ground.  Actually, that would have been a good youtube video...

Anyways, thanks to my friend Lynn, she saved our lives.  She gave me the name and number of a pro.  A reasonable and quick pro.  I called and him and he came that SAME DAY!  

Don't mind the half built shed and chicken coop in the background.  Don't judge.  I told you we've been busy!

Hellllloooo POOL!!!  Very cool!  And, hellloooo racer-back tank tan lines! Not cool!

I must admit.  I'll take these horrendous tan lines any day over attempting to install another pool!  This thing better last forever!!!!

To all of you on Facebook who said don't attempt it. 
You. Were. Right.  

And, to Lynn.  
You rock.  
We love you.  
And, we love Tim (the pool installer).  

Now, surely we can DIY ourselves a pretty little deck....?????

I sense another tan line coming on...

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Free Summer Printables

Every time a holiday approaches I talk about how crazy fast this year is going!  Yesterday, Charlie informed me that in exactly 6 months it will be Christmas Day.  WHHAAATTT???!!!

Maybe it's FLYING BY because we have a one year old...??? is it almost the 4th of July!?!?

And, HELLO SUMMER!  It really snuck up on us this year.  As in "snuck up" I mean from 70 degree days to 95 degree days in a snap!  HELLO HUMIDITY

We shared a ton of printables in our Year of Printables Gift Post, but thought we'd re-post the summer and 4th of July ones just to remind you! 

You're Welcome.  :)  

Just right click and save!  

We'll be here Friday with a Finally Friday post including an update on our not-so-DIY pool install.  Don't miss it...

Follow along!

Linking up:

Love of Family & Home
Crafty, Scrappy, Happy

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

BBQ Bacon Ranch Pork Chops

Who loves BBQ sauce?  

And, bacon?

And, ranch?


The occupants of the B&W household sure do!  So, the other night Charlie and I decided they needed to come together.  They needed to come together all over our pork chops!  

It turned out amazing!  But, who was second guessing that combo anyways??? :)

This is how it went down. 

It's far from rocket science, but I'm sure Rachel Rae and Paula Dean would approve!

I'd been shopping at Aldi's last week and these just happened to be what I found in my fridge. 

In an attempt to make healthier choices, I had purchased turkey bacon.  This recipe without a doubt, would have been even better with regular bacon! Next time, I may not let health override...

I threw my porch chops in a container completely covered in BBQ sauce and put it in the fridge while I got everything else ready.  

Sprinkle half of the ranch packet over your BBQ chops.  Then, wrap with bacon and secure with tooth picks.  

I put a little extra sauce over the top of the bacon and then sprinkled just a little more ranch over the top before heading to the grill.

Then, off to the grill...

Grillmaster Charlie kept our chops on foil until they were almost done.  We didn't want the bacon to burn to a crisp!  

When we moved them off of the foil, we basted them with another layer of sauce and another sprinkle of our ranch packet.  After a few minutes on the grill grates, they were ready to go!

Then...we devoured them!  

Linking Up:

Home Stories A to Z
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
Love of Family & Home
Crafty, Scrappy, Happy

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Oh BOY! Little Man Baby Shower

Meet my best friend, Jen.

This girl stole a piece of my heart when we were 14 and I'm certain I'll never get it back.  If it's possible to have two soul mates, she's my number two.  For the past 12 years, we have been inseparable.  To this day, we don't go a day without talking.  We're actually really different in a lot of ways.  I've even said before, that I don't know how we're so close or how we became friends!  But, we are and we did.  Maybe our differences is why it works.  Either way,  I love her and don't know where I'd be without her.

Ok, enough sap stories.  :)

My beautiful BFF is expecting a Little Man here in the next few weeks which means....BABY SHOWER!  I was honored to share the hostess duties with several other lovely ladies.

Remember Paisley's Carnival Party a few months ago?  Well, I partnered up with another AMAZING business for this Little Man Baby Shower!  I saw Jocelyn's work and knew we had to team up!  You can check out her site, DistInk Designs, HERE or her Facebook HERE.

This is the invitation we used...

And, the accessory package..

Her prices are soooo reasonable and the files are great quality!  It made planning this Little Man shower so much easier and stress-free!  The color theme and chevron print was adorable and perfect for our outdoor location.

Ok, Ok, I won't make you wait any longer....

We had the most beautiful location.  If you're in the Southern Illinois area and need a wedding or party venue, email me.  I'll give you all the deets on this place.

We had a brunch, so we served bagels, fruit, mimosa's, muffins and other yummy breakfast things.

These water bottle wraps were one of my favorite parts.  Do you see that nutrition label???  Such a cute touch!

We were lucky enough to have a beautiful day and comfortable weather!  (Southern Illinois summer's are humid as humid can get, normally)

Jen made these white chocolate mustaches for all of the guests!  These cute little matching favor tags totally set them off!

Now, for one of my favorite moments...

We brought a chalk board and chalk marker and had every guest write a personalized message to Jen.  She has her very own personalized guest book that she can keep forever!

Sometimes these things go so fast.

Before you know it, you're loading your gifts and cleaning up.  Being able to look back and remember each guest and all their sweet messages and advice will be something Jen and her new little family can cherish forever. :)

Another keepsake for Jen and Baby C, were these cute little wish cards.  These are totally customized in Jocelyn's packages and add such a cute touch. 

We also included these inserts into Jen's invites.  I adore this idea!  It's such a personal touch and a much better use of guest's card money!

We had a blast planning and celebrating Baby C and we can't wait for him to get here!

So, what kind of party or event do you have coming up?  Wedding, Bridal Shower,  Birthday Party???

My new friend Jocelyn can totally hook you up!  Here are just a few of my favorite pieces she currently has in her shop.

Ok y'all, I could go on for days.  No matter what event you have coming up, DistInk Designs is the way to go!  Jocelyn offers printable files and printing services.  And her prices..... they're great!

Which is your favorite?  I'm totally digging that Burgers, Beer and Baby Talk invite! 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Corn Casserole {Miranda Lambert Style}

So I have this friend named Miranda Lambert.  Heard of her?  

Well, one day she called me up and said "Hey, Em!  I've got this new recipe for you to try out! I'll text it to you!"

Long story short, I made it and IT. WAS. AWESOME!!!


Ok, so as in "friend", I mean I've seen her in concert. 

As in "she called me up", I mean my mom emailed me a photo copy of the recipe from a magazine.

Regardless, IT. IS. AWESOME!!! :) :) :) 

It's basically a buttery, cheesy, macaroni and corn, dream come true!  We make it a lot.  Especially for family get togethers and when we have company.  Everyone always asks me for the recipe.  So I start with "so I have this friend named Miranda Lambert...."

Here's the recipe she "texted" me....

Important Bonfires and Wine Tip #1:  I always drain the corn regardless of what it says in the recipe above.  

Important Bonfires and Wine Tip #2: I always double the recipe.  Believe me, it's worth it.  You probably won't even have left-overs.

Important Bonfires and Wine Tip #3:  I use my crock pot most of the time!  (instructions below)

First, I boil water and cook my noodles about half way.

Spray your crock pot, then, toss everything in!

I use salt, pepper and garlic salt to taste.

I cook mine on high for about 2 hours, stirring regularly. Then, switch it to low or warm right before serving.

Let me know what you think and I'll pass it on to my friend, Miranda! :)

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Friday, June 14, 2013

Finally Friday {Take 9}

Well Hello there FRIDAY!!

Let's get right to it, shall we?


1)  Operation figure out the pool has officially begun.  Dirt work is basically finished and Saturday is THE DAY.  Hopefully by the time we write the next FINALLY FRIDAY, I'll be relaxing pool-side!!! :)

2)  Charlie taught Paisley to "shoulder shrug" this week and it may be the cutest, most sassiest thing I've ever seen.  She puts on her most sarcastic squinty smile and shrugs up one shoulder.  Hands down, she's gonna cause us problems! LOL!  

3)  I'm getting caught up on my DVR'd Bachelorette's.  Holy Drama Boys!  I swear they're worse than girls!!!

4)  My mom and I are making plans to give her beautiful from porch a makeover and I'm so excited!  Follow me on Pinterest to see our inspiration!  

5)  I feel like we have a zillion projects going right now!  Chicken coop, shed, pool, front porch, patio's, and the list goes on and on and on!  Did I mention I'm ready to relax by the pool???


1) I started aqua therapy this week.....No not in our own pool, but a physical therapy facility.  Yeah, basically me with a bunch of 90 year old women talking about broken hips and bunions. 

2) Now that I've put that mental picture into your head......Operation pool is in full effect.  All I have to say is thank god for good friends, cold beer and good food.

3) Speaking of good friends.  I am truly blessed to have such great friends.  A buddy of mine decided to give me a bunch of siding that I can eventually put on my shed when it gets complete.  Another friend volunteered to come down and build the shed for me. Good to know that even though I cant do much, I got friends to help.  Garth Brooks said it best with friends in low places.

4) Okay since my inspirational person of the week (Zach Sobiech) was such a hit with most of you, I figured I'd share another with you.  His name is Clay Dyer.  Some of you may not be into bass fishing like myself, but you need to look him up.  Just a bit of info on him.  He was born with no legs and only a partial arm and he bass fishes professionally.  Watch a video or read his story.  All I have to say is when you think your day is going bad, be grateful for what you have. When life gives you lemons, squeeze the sh@* outta them and make lemonade.

5) There will be no charge for the inspirational motivation given above...I'm off to go watch the lightening bugs fly (it's either that or bang my head against the wall watching that stuff you women call entertainment **THE BACHELORETTE **)  

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Thursday, June 13, 2013

Father's Day Photo Shoot - {DIY Gift Idea}

I feel like we just celebrated Christmas.  

How is it already time for Father's Day!?!?

Regardless of how unprepared I am this year as far as gifts are concerned, my friends and I did manage to throw together a little photoshoot at Girl's Night this week.  

I grabbed a few letters at Hobby Lobby, spray painted them white and told the kids to hold them and smile!

Paisley was only interested in sitting on my backdrops.  She literally attempted to throw the letter back at us when we handed it to her.  These were the best outtakes we got!

My friend Chelsi's daughter did a wonderful job!  How cute is that little grin!?!?

The other kiddo's did a great job, too!  I know all of our hubbies will love this little keepsake of a gift!  

Did you DIY a gift this year?  

I'm thinking the rest of this year's Father's Day gift will be paint and roof materials for the Chicken Coop.  Yep, we're that fun and exciting.  

At least I pulled off the photo gift, right!?!?

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