Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

My Christmas Wish

The gifts are under the tree.

The cookies are on the plate.

The children are nestled all snug in their beds.

The only thing missing is some snow.

The weather man, albeit a nice guy, says we are getting snow tonight. 

I will believe it when I see it.

Snowflakes on the tree seem to be the only way to get my wish.

The only way {sigh}.

Chalkboard paint, glitter paint (on other side, not pictured) and a couple fancy fonts can always fill the void.

A white Christmas is the wish I have for myself.

For you though, my dear readers, I wish...peace, love, laughter, healing, memories, batteries that last longer than 5 minutes, fun stocking stuffers, no cookie belly aches and friendship.

Happy Christmas! Merry Everything!


Fonts Used {from top to bottom}

fontleroy Brown
Pottery Barn
Peachtree Sundress ~

Friday, December 21, 2012

Mission: Bloggy Secret Santa     

How to make Chalkboard Gift Tags

As kids, my brother and I used to look for our presents at Christmastime.

When my parents left to go for groceries we ran up to my dad's closet to peak.

There we would find the stacks of boxes, usually wrapped without tags.

We searched the boxes for any clue that told who the gift was for.

My mom, in her cleverness, wrote a T or a J somewhere on the box. I don't know why she just didn't put a tag on it.  Maybe she thought we would look. See? Told ya she is clever.

That didn't slow us down though. I figured out how to unwrap said gifts without ripping the paper or tape.
Shh, don't tell my mom, OK? Pinky swear?

Christmas day would come and I knew almost all of my presents.  It never deterred my excitement.  I only worried that my reaction wouldn't be good enough to hide my secret.

To this day, I can't stand waiting to see what I am getting for Christmas.  It's just too much suspense, for me. I will even go out and buy my presents and hand them to the hubs to wrap.  It's all good. I get what I want and I am still excited to open the gift.

So when Julie from redheadcandecorate suggested we do a bloggy secret Santa, I hesitated. For sure I would not know what I was getting this time. But I only hesitated for a second. Then I thought, "While I do not like to be surprised. I sure do love surprising other people. Let's do this!"


Wooden Tags (from Hobby Lobby)

Chalkboard Paint


Thin jewelry wire (from Joann's Fabrics)

Step 1: Lightly sand all the tags.

Step 2: Paint with chalkboard paint, two coats both sides.  I put two tooth picks wrapped with a twist tie through the hole to hold it in place.

Step 3: Thread jewelry wire through hole.

Step 4: Wrap them beautiful.

Voila...chalkboard gift tags.  And I got to send them to Kimberly over at Serendipity Refined. Can I say, she is a doll. We have so much in common. This was a fabulous way to get to know someone new!

Want to see what I got from my secret Santa, Cheri? Head on over to It's So Very Cheri. I love it! It was one surprise that I couldn't wait to open!

Happy Gifting!


PS...I made a few Miner adjustments to this project. I kept a few tags for myself.  Don't worry. It's not a secret. I already told Kimberly. Wait until you see what I did with them!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The Wicked Elf of the North

The Wizard of OZ. What is not to love?

Yellow Brick
Glinda the Good
Dorothy's ruby red slippers...where can I get me a pair?

To this day, my mom can't understand why the monkeys didn't scare me to tears.

I don't know either.They just didn't.

That witch though. I did not care for her.

Our elf, Cookie Crumb McDoodle, thinks he is so clever or creepy.

"I'll get you my pretty. And your little dog too."

Do you see the resemblance?

I don't think that is creepy. Not one bit.

How about you?


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A Hand Chalked Christmas Mantel and a Joke

Ellen stole my joke.  

Yep, that Ellen. The one and only.

Back when Hilary Clinton was trying to get a Presidential nomination (circa 2007), I made a joke to my family that maybe it would be good to have women run the world because then there wouldn't be any war. 

We would all just hold grudges and not speak to one another.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Peace on Earth, Good Will to Men...
A Christmas Sneak Peak

Down deep in the back closet of the basement there are boxes and boxes of ornaments.

There are ornaments from my childhood.

Ornaments from when I first got married.

Ornaments from when my babies were born.

And ornaments from in between.

Not too many, just the right amount of ornaments.

This year; however, we decided to do make a few Miner adjustments. Much to my boys dismay, we didn't put any of those ornaments on the tree.

(Insert whiny voice here..."But mama what about the red train? We have to put on this star!"...sorry boys, not this year. Insert maniacal laugh here.)

We went neutral and although the house was in total chaos with boxes (OK, it still is in total chaos), the tree is coming together nicely.

So here is to Peace on Earth and hopefully, no more chaos...well once the boxes are gone!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Pinterest Project...Kiss Pie by Picky Palate

There is this pie crust. It has been sitting in my fridge for months. I kid you not. Months. Nothing made from scratch....just a crust all sealed up in a bag from Pillsbury. We (and by we I mean the hubs) probably had plans to make a quiche or an apple pie. But that never happened.

For the love of all things food, something had to be done with this crust. So I searched my Pinterest board, Yummy in my Tummy for a recipe that used crust.

That is when I found it...Kiss Pie by Picky Palate.

I had all the ingredients...Hershey kisses, egg, water, and you guessed it...pie crust. And a project was born. OK, not born, because I didn't make it up, but we sure as heck got to work! 

I did make one Miner adjustment to the instructions while working on these. Instead of using a knife to cut the crust, we used a 1 cup size measuring cup. Flipping it upside down to cut the crust made it super easy for my little guy to help.

For the recipe head on over to Picky Palate.  It won't disappoint!


Monday, November 12, 2012

A Month of Thankful

 Life is just happening around here and I have missed blogging for the last week. 

I count my blessings everyday, especially the first day of this month.

Since I doubt I will be able to sit down everyday and tippity type about my blessings, here is the abridged version...short, sweet and to the point (all 30 of them). 

And they may or may not be in any particular order.

Let's pick up where I left off...

2. My husband...without him I would not eat (he cooks food up real nice).

3. My 6 year old...without him I would not have a thumb war partner.

4. My 4 year old....without him there would not be silly stories.

5. My family...without them there would not be crazy Christmas lists or help remodeling/ cleaning.

6. My house...without it I would have nothing to organize (Oh, how I love to organize).

7. My job....without it we'd be living in a van down by the river.

8. Netflix...what is a better way to waste a child-free evening?

9. Our health.

10. My friends...I need them to keep my sanity...they are cheaper than therapy.

11. My freedom...brought to me by many others who have fought for it.

12. Grilled cheese...need I say more?

13. My camera...I have finally figured out how to use other modes besides automatic!

14. My comfy bed...nothing is better after a long day of chasing rowdy boys than my bed.

15. Not having any pets...without them, well there is no pet hair without them.

16. The sun....warm, warm. sunny warmth.

17. Our comfy couch.  Oh man, this thing is so comfy.

18. My eyesight...without it how could I read the most amazing stories or marvel in the cuteness of  my kids?

19. Flip flops. Summer, can you come back please? I miss my flip flops.

20. The good teachers at my kids schools.

21. Target...although I give you way too much money, I still love you.

22. Garden Gnomes

23. The beach at the better way to spend the summer.

24. Chocolate. Cannot forget the chocolate.

25. Reruns of Friends and 90210...yes I still watch them....a lot...too, it's never too much.

27. Nick Jr...especially when it keeps the kids entertained (wink, wink).

28. Laughter...the best medicine.

29. of the biggest cheerleaders of this blog. Thank you!

30. truly is a wonderful life.

Happy Thanksgiving!

What are you thankful for?


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Socks For Sandy

Back in February 2006 when I was 8 and a half months pregnant with my first baby we had a pretty major ice storm here in the Adirondacks.  I remember coming home from work thinking "Crap, the power is out. But, it will be back on soon." And then I took a nap.

Five or six days later the power finally came back on. During that week we stayed in a hotel for 2 nights, came home, borrowed a generator, gave it back, then had to go buy our own. I worried about the baby and I couldn't get warm and we just wanted everything to be normal again.

Everyone is aware of the devastation that the East Coast is going through right now.  I could cry thinking about the people who have lost everything.

No warm blankets.
No comfy couches.
No scrapbooks or beloved stuff animals to snuggle.

I get it. And I didn't lose my house. 6 years later, it is just a bad memory. What happened last week is heart breaking though. I don't know about you, but I have an overwhelming feeling of needing to help. You can too.

Laura (one of my bloggy friends) over at The Shed has found a need and is doing her part.

Socks for Sandy is her project.

She is collecting socks, hats, and mittens until November 9th to take to local shelters in New Jersey. 

Go here for the address to send men's, women's, or children's size socks (or hats or mittens). Even if it is one pair.  It will be one more pair that someone will have so they can get warm.

I'll be sending a package this week. Thanks so much for your help too!


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Free Thanksgiving Subway Art 

November is here and this is the month to give thanks for all of our blessings. Truly, I should be thankful all year long. I really try. I think happy thoughts as much as possible. I thank the Universe whenever I can (anyone out there read The Secret? That book changed our lives over here.) However, in the month of November I love to take each day to say an extra thank you for something in my life.

Today, November 1st, I am starting with you.
                My readers. 
Thank you so much for your support.
Thank you for your encouragement.
I love this little space on the inter-webs. 

So to say, "I think you are so cool", I whipped up a little Thanksgiving Subway Art. 
Pin and print to your hearts content.

I hope you like it.

Here is another version without the border.


PS...See the word FOOTBALL? The font I used is in that little hit TV show. It reminded me of the Thanksgiving episode where they were all playing football and had to keep setting the turkey timer and it was so cut throat that Phoebe flashed Chandler just to get the ball.  Ah, good times!

I'm p
artying at:
and here...

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Another Picket Fence Post Sign

A couple weeks ago we did a little giveaway here at A Few Miner Adjustments. And whenever I read about a giveaway I always wonder, "Did that person ever get their prize?"

Well, the winner of this giveaway did in fact receive their prize (...the sign's in the mail). No really it's in the mail. This is a special treat though...there is a love story to go along with the quote.

When I read it, my eyes teared up.
My heart melted.
I am a sucker for a good romance.

This is the story behind the quote on the picket post for her words.

"I have been with Heather for four years today (10-23-10).  It has never been easy, nor has it ever been dull. We have had definite ups and downs. But one thing is for certain, love is never wrong.

On October 23, 2010 we had our own ceremony of love. I walked to our beautifully decorated front porch to our song, "I'm Yours" by Tracy Chapman. I have the refrain (as well as Heather) tattooed on me.

{I am yours if you are mine}

I love her and would walk through fire for her...and have done so (metaphorically).

I would not trade a moment of it."

Kristina, I hope that you and Heather enjoy this sign as much as I enjoyed making it for you.


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

One Sweater...Three Different Projects

{Part 3}

Sometimes a sweater is more than a sweater.  It is warmth for your hands, a head rest after a long day, and something stylish for your boots.  I knew this sweater had to go.  It wasn't for me anymore. So I made a few Miner adjustments to it.

If you are curious about the first 2 projects that I did, you can find them here and here.

So after doing the first projects what is left of this sweater?  Not much...just the arms and neck.

I looked at the neck and said "What the heck can I make out of this?"

A big fat nothin'.  So I tossed it.

The arms are another story though.  A love story, if you will.

At first, I put them on like leg warmers.  Unfortunately, the wrist end of the arm was up by my knee and it was too tight. Ouch!

Picture this. I am walking down the hall at school with a group of students when all of a sudden the circulation in my leg cuts off and I go down like a sack of potatoes.  Not pretty.

So I went in a different direction...literally.

I turned them around and made boot liners.
The stores sell them for high rubber boots and they range in price from about $9.99 - $24.99.

There is no foot in these though, so I will still have to wear socks.
But I my legs have been oh, so toasty this winter.{LOVE}

How did I do it? Here are 3 easy steps.

And there you have it...boot liners!

One sweater that I didn't like turned into three {useful} creations that I love...

Mittens for my hands.
pillow for my head.
And boot liners for my legs.

What would you make from an old sweater?


Saturday, October 20, 2012

One Sweater...Three Different Projects

Project #2

Last week, I told you about this sweater. A perfectly nice sweater, but who wants nice. Nice is a second grade word and I try to teach my third graders to use descriptive words other than nice.  Let's expand our vocabulary, shall we?  How about attractive, charming, lovely, or inviting?
And while the sweater was nice, it wasn't attractive, charming, lovely, or even inviting.

So I made a few Miner adjustments. Project #1 was a pair of mittens. They came out just how I imagined.  And they are oh so cozy. One could say they are inviting!

Next, I took the body of the sweater and made...a pillow. 

Just a little accent pillow, but really, truly it is charming and lovely.

Here is a quick tutorial...

And there you have it....a sweater pillow. What do you think?

It is a happy little head rest.

Stay tuned for the last project. Can you even imagine what is left of this once "nice" sweater?


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Is it Happy Hour yet?

To my best friend, Tina...

You've been there for me through the great and the not so great.
You've offered honest advice and dodged F-R-O-G-S with me.
You've traveled to shop for wedding dresses
and talked thousands of hours on the phone about nothing at all.
You've been so good to me (and my family)....words could never express my gratefulness.

No matter how many miles separate us, we will always be connected! I wouldn't make any Miner adjustments to our friendship!

I wish for you a new year of adventure and pure loveliness in every one of your days!

I love you forever!

Is it happy hour yet?


Monday, October 15, 2012

One sweater…Three Different Projects

Project #1

There's this sweater. It is light gray, so soft, and it has a cable knit design in it.  All the makings of a cozy winter piece in anyone’s wardrobe. But I don’t like it. Well, I don’t like it on me.  I don’t know…it just isn't cutting it. No pun intended.

Let's make a few Miner adjustments, if you will. Three Miner adjustments to be exact.

Project #1

Today, let's make some mittens.  And just to put it out there, I was so nervous to cut this sweater. But it went well. Thank goodness...I very much dislike wasting anything.

{Step 1}
Make a pattern with newspaper or tissue paper. Trace your hand with a little extra all the way around for the seam allowance. Cut out the pattern (I actually cut outside the line, just to give it a little more space and I am glad that I did)

{Step 2}
Pin the pattern on the sweater right along the bottom edge.

{Step 3}
Be brave and cut out the mitten.  I cut the top and bottom piece together at the same time.  The pattern was pinned to both sides to hold it all together.

{Step 4}
Move the pattern over and repeat steps 1-3 for the other mitten.

{Step 5}
Put the right sides together.  You should be looking at the wrong sides when you sew.

{Step 6}
Sew all the way around both mittens (except the bottom edge). I used a cris-cross stitch to make it sturdier.

{Step 7}
Cut the extra threads off and turn inside out!

Voila....mittens! Even if they only last me a year, I will get a lot of use out of them!

Stay tuned for the next project in this 3 part series!

Happy Cozy Mitten Days!


Project #2 can be found here.

Project #3 can be found here.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Weathered Fence Post Sign Giveaway Winner

I don't cook chicken (ew!), but we do have a winner for our Weathered Picket Fence Sign Giveaway.

Congratulations, Kristina Howland!

I will be in touch through the Facebook Blog page, so we can figure out the details!

Thanks, everyone for your support!

Happy Sunday!


Saturday, October 13, 2012

30 Day Spending Freeze....

Did we achieve our goal?

We're done. Finally!

If you are just tuning in, we did a 30 day spending freeze. Here are all the links to the series....

30 Day Spending Freeze

Week 1 - Spending

Will Power According to Frog and Toad

Finding Balance

Week 3 - Spending

I have to say, this time around was much more difficult than the first time we did it in 2010.  There were a couple weeks where we didn't have anything going on, so it was easy to just live without shopping.

However, there was traveling for Matt's marathon (Yay, Matt! You ran your first marathon! I am so proud of you.) So that was extra money spent on gas. And we signed B-Bear up for Boy Scouts.

Although... my super cool dad bought us pizza from our favorite pizza place when we were home.  Is that cheating? Having someone else buy our meal? Who cares...that pizza was so good.  Plus, the kids are older and saying no to bounce houses was well...impossible. 

Anyhow, this is the break down for this week's spending...

Gas for Car #1

Gas for Car #2

Bread at Freihofer's Outlet
Post Office


Bounce House @ Fall Festival

Total Spending for this week

Total spending for the freeze

Total Extra Savings

We didn't make our goal of saving an extra $500, but we still managed to save more than other months. 

Was this a success?  

I think it was. I'm not going to beat myself up over $125.89

What did I learn this time around?

{1.} Some of the things we thought we needed right then and there, well, we really didn't need.  Frankly, I can't even remember what they were.

{2.}  It feels so darn good to save extra money. Next month we will go back to our normal budget, so this truly was extra money found/ saved. 

{3.} If we do this freeze again, it will not be during a month when we have charities, school obligations, fun fall activities going on.  That made it super difficult to say no and stay on task. Although for the most part we did it. Maybe January, right after Christmas would be easier.

Thanks for following this series.  I hope you enjoyed it and maybe you were successful with a spending freeze of your own.  I'd love to hear about it!

Enjoy your extra savings!


Thursday, October 11, 2012

Ever have one of those days....

You of those days when everything is going fantastically.  You couldn't think of a better way to have your day go and then everything goes horrible wrong.

Today is that day.

Alas, the roller-coaster of life continues!

Try to enjoy the day or have a "mommy needs a drink" drink.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Giveaway...weathered picket fence post sign

I'm trying to put myself out there. 
Going out on a limb. 
The early bird catches the worm. 
Any publicity is good publicity. 
OK...maybe not that last one.  

All I am trying to do right now is get 100 likes on my Facebook blog page.  More would be amazing, but let's start small and work our way up, shall we?

The Giveaway:

When A Few Miner Adjustments hits 100 likes, everyone's name will go into a drawing for a weathered picket fence post sign....just like my Rise and Shine sign.

What that means for you:  

You pick the quote. I will make it and then ship it to you for free.

The fine print:

Immediate family may not be included.  Let's face it peeps, you can have one whenever you want. Love you, though. Thanks for supporting my blog! All names will assigned a number based on the order in which you have liked the page.  A random generator will be used to pick a winner. A name will be picked within 24 hours of the 100th like.  Any other likes above and beyond 100 will also be entered as long as they are within that 24 hours.  That isn't confusing or anything, is it?

It'll be fun! What do you think?

Just scroll down and hit like on my Facebook link in the margin to the right. Or go to

Then you won't miss anything! Plus, I love making new friends!

Enjoy the day!


Sunday, October 7, 2012

30 Day Spending Freeze - Part 4
Week 3 Check-in

We are 3 weeks into our spending freeze.  One more to go!  I made my list of things that I want or need.

Things that I want...

  • a new purse for fall
  • a white picture frame for Little Monkey's Room
  • some new clothes
  • to eat at a restaurant

Things I need...

  • a haircut
  • sneakers

Making a list puts it into perspective for us.  After our freeze, I won't go out and buy all of those things.  That would make saving this money a wash.  I will probably put some of it on my Christmas wish list.  I will get a haircut though.  I don't know how I show my face in public!

But really the list of things I want or need is not that long.  I really do have everything that is necessary.  And I have noticed that I am spending a lot more quality time with my kids because I am not waiting in the check-out line at Target.  That is an amazing feeling!

Here is our spending for the week...

B's field trip for school  
Gas for car # 1

Gas for car # 2

Groceries (for 2 weeks)
Cell phones

Karate for the kids


Weekly Total:

Total spending since 9/16:

Think we can do it?  I don't think we will need to make any Miner adjustments to our $1500 spending limit.  It's getting close to the total, but I have faith that we won't go over.

Have you made a list of needs and wants? Try it. I promise you will feel better.

Enjoy the day!


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