Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Fridge Tour

Well, you've seen my pantry, why not my fridge?

Just as with the pantry, I've been collecting so much inspiration from Pinterest. We're still on a function over form budget, but I've altered many of the tips I've found there to suit our lifestyle. Most of it really comes down to the most basic organization principle, though, of keeping like things together.

Our top shelf holds beverages:
I fill up Margaret's milk sippies as they come out of the dishwasher. It saves me energy at breakfast time and storage space for the cups. I also keep water bottles full in the fridge to grab and go. It's made staying hydrated during pregnancy so much easier. We store our milk in half gallon glass bottles to save space. I bought them from Wal-Mart for $5 apiece.

Lower shelves:
We mostly use Sterilite food storage containers for leftovers. Food stays fresh 2-3 times longer in them, in my experience, and they can go in the microwave, dishwasher, and freezer. They're also BPA-free.  We use Pyrex food storage containers for leftovers that are likely to be reheated in the storage container.


I like the Rubbermaid Produce Saver containers for keeping produce fresh and crisp. I've had a head of iceberg lettuce last over a month in one of these. I love that the lids snap onto the bottoms and the whole set nests nicely for storage.

I think you're supposed to keep butter up here, but you never know what you'll find in our little space. Right now it's some paintbrushes, a prescription, and a basket of fast food condiment packets.

Now, wasn't that just a fascinating experience? If you're lucky, maybe I'll introduce you to our linen closet sometime...


Monday, August 29, 2011

Little Bear Party

It's been a whole week since this little sweetie:

turned two, and I've got to say, two years old becomes her. In celebration of the big day, we held a Maurice Sendak Little Bear party. For those not in the know, Little Bear is a 6-year-old brown bear cub who, along with his friends Owl, Duck, Hen, Cat, and Emily, loves to explore the woods around his home and create adventures. Our little one is just smitten with the books and TV show.

As usual, we're on a very tight budget at the moment, but with a little ingenuity, a well-stocked craft room, and the good fortune of Dollar Tree stocking many useful crafting items, we managed to hold the party for only $15!

The birthday banner was made from crepe paper leaves and hand-cut letters to spell out her name. The letters were made from the same fabric as the tablecloth I sewed for my very first apartment (which has held up well and graced our buffet table). We hung the leaves from twine with simple laundry clothespins.

Little Bear loves chocolate cake, so a big, gooey one stood front and center at our party. I decorated the cake plate by hot gluing a moss roll (dried moss attached to a mesh wire backing) to our glass cake plate. The roll peeled right off when we were done with it.

The plate sat on a bed of leaves made by stitching some old silk leaves (left over from my Mumkin project) together at the corners and adding a smattering of buttons for interest.

No Little Bear meal would be complete without fish sandwiches (tuna) and honey sandwiches (peanut butter and honey). I scattered some seashells around the fish sandwiches in hopes The Mermaid would turn up for an ocean adventure.

One Little Bear story tells of Little Bear thinking his mother forgot his birthday, so he takes it upon himself to make some "birthday soup" to serve to his friends. He used "carrots and potatoes, peas and tomatoes," so we served up some vegetable soup of our own.

We all enjoyed some "zingy" lemonade, which fortunately was sweeter and far less zingy than the batch Little Bear once attempted. Ours had some blackberries floating in the lemonade, just like Little Bear loves to gather.

When Emily's Granny thinks something is silly, she pronounces it "a lot of applesauce," so we enjoyed some in her honor.

The food markers were made from reindeer moss glued to floral foam disks purchased from the dollar store. I used white school glue, and the moss held just fine. I then stuck a barbecue skewer in the foam base, printed out some Little Bear images I found online onto vellum along with the names of the dishes, and glued the vellum "flags" onto the skewers.

Other tablescaping included:
  • shredded aspen wood found at Michael's craft store scattered all around to make things look woodsy
  • polished stones
  • moss-covered stones nestled here and there, purchased from the dollar store

I laid out a roll of easel paper and a bucket of crayons on the coffee table, thinking it would make a fun guest book/giant birthday card keepsake. Of course, Miss Meg couldn't resist the opportunity to leave her creative mark. She spent more time coloring than anyone else did writing messages!

Overall, the party was quite a success, with good friends, good food, and a sweet brand-new two year old to keep everyone entertained.