July 29, 2014

10+ Combinations for How to Store Soiled Cloth Diapers (+some tips)

10+ Combinations for How to Store Soiled Cloth Diapers (+some tips)
Head on over to the Cloth Diaper Whisperer and check out my article: 10+ Combinations for Storing Soiled Cloth Diapers (+some tips)!

I'm so excited that I was able to write a cloth diaper article that got posted on a large cloth diapering blog! This blog is affiliated with KellysCloset, a small cloth diapering web store, that TONS of people flock to for cloth diapering and natural essentials.

Writing this article also completed my first goal on my 30 while 30 list, submit something for publication! But this actually got published! Which counts in my book as being published since I had to submit it to a business, someone reviewed it, and they have put it out into the world for others to read.

I've always loved writing and am thinking about contributing to this blog regularly! Now, to start coming up with some more good ideas....

Happy reading!

July 23, 2014

Summertime Watermelon Mojitos

Summertime Watermelon Mojitos
We wanted to try something new and here it is! These Summertime Watermelon Mojitos are very tasty! I adapted my recipe from here. These were nice to sip on the back porch while reading a new book.

If you happen to have a nice little herb garden already in order, growing mint, you are good to go!
Summertime Watermelon Mojitos
Summertime Watermelon Mojitos  
makes ~3 1/2 servings, refrigerate for 2-3 hrs prior to serving so its ice cold 
10 oz (1 1/4 cups) Bacardi light rum
4 thick slices of watermelon, seedless
3 limes, juiced
20 large mint leaves
1/2 cup simple syrup (make this: mix 1 cup sugar & 1 cup water, simmer until dissolved, cool)
sprigs of mint for decoration 
1. In a food processor, blend until smooth, the watermelon and mint leaves.
2. Add watermelon mixture to a pitcher. Stir in the Bacardi, lime juice and simple syrup.
3. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours before serving, or until ice cold.
4. Pour into glasses and top with a sprig of mint. Serve!

These drinks are really refreshing and oh so tasty! Make sure to refrigerate your mix before serving! I found that making them on the fly and serving immediately wasn't as tasty. We did add ice to our drinks which helped a lot.
Summertime Watermelon Mojitos
These are great with a light simple summer dish to pair it with, like this Barefoot Contessa Roasted Shrimp Salad which is soooo delicious. Who doesn't love dill?!
Roasted Shrimp Salad
Summertime Watermelon Mojitos & Roasted Shrimp Salad
We had an amazing meal! If you are looking for something new to try, give both of these recipes a taste!

July 15, 2014

How to make better Black & White Photos with PicMonkey (it's free!)

How to make better Black & White Photos with PicMonkey (it's free!)
I love the look of black and white photos that are really contrasting. Black blacks, and white whites, not a lot of gray tones is perfect for me. I think it gives photos a lot more depth, feeling and even soul. 

When I was younger, and my obsession with photography was just starting, I was mesmerized by Ansel Adams' black and white photos. (If you've never seen his work, you are in for a treat!) His photos that spoke to me the most were usually the trees and mountains. They just feel so majestic and pure.
How to make better Black & White Photos with PicMonkey (it's free!)
When using PicMonkey to edit photos, I learned a very easy way to turn your black and white photos a darker, classic shade, but still use their b&w effect filter.

How you ask?

All you need to do to your photo, while it is still in color, is to darken the image by turning the shadows up. That's it! You can find this under Basic Edits>Exposure, the first tab on the left. (You can also play with the Contrast slider too if you'd like.)
Once you have made your color image darker, proceed to the 2nd tab down on the left to: Effects>Black and White. 
Now your photo is a nice dark black and white photo! 

Make sure to click save, or if you'd like to fine tune it more, simply click the back arrow in the middle of the screen right above your photo, to undo any edits made.
How to make better Black & White Photos with PicMonkey (it's free!)
A great way to make your iPhone pictures black and white is with the VSCO Cam app, B1 filter. It has a nice classic, dark b&w filter. 

I also love Elsie's advice in her post How to create bright & sharp iPhone Photos when she speaks about knowing when a picture is better in black and white! (Tip #4, towards the bottom)

Check out some of my other PicMonkey photo tutorials:
{Hassle free} way to make your own blog button
Customize your Photos: Text & Effects
Customize your Photos: Collage & Word Art
Customize your Photos: Photo on Photo & Watermark

July 10, 2014

4th of July holiday in {photos}!

We were lucky enough to visit a good friend's mother's WI lake house over the 4th of July holiday (did you follow that relation?). We had so much fun! After being there for minutes, we wondered "why did it take us so long to come and visit?!"

We had fun riding the jet skis, pontoon boat, visiting the sand bar for some fun in the water, kayaking, watching sun sets, and ate a ton of food. We also brought our dog Niko with us, and he also had fun in the water and running around the spacious yard. 
There was also a beautiful garden that they build not far from the house. It was gorgeous complete with a drift wood door arch.
(photo by Sixpence Photography)
I loved that we had so much time to connect again with mother Earth, and just be in nature. Listening to the lake, the breeze blowing through the wild tall grasses, viewing the sunsets... it was just amazing. God's beauty and talent, in both nature and people, is so inspiring, relaxing and something to remember.

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