Friday, March 12, 2010

Best of: Finale

This has been such a fun (funny!) week. We find it rather hilarious that we drew 35 comments asking for deodorant suggestions. Who ever would have guessed that would be such a hot topic?!

Thank you for all of your suggestions and tips. Thank you! We hope some of this has been helpful to you; we can't wait to do it again.

Now the comment thread is yours to ask each other for suggestions, recommendations and tips about anything and everything.

Try to phrase your responses so that people reading the thread will know which question you are responding to - either by restating the question or by addressing your comment to the person who posed the question, i.e.:

Emily:
I need new laundry detergent. I want clean clothes and a yummy smell -- suggestions?

Anne:
@ Emily - Tide w/ Febreze


Easy enough, no?
Can't wait to see what comes up.

32 comments:

Rachael said...

What's the best way to reach out to make new friends (when I'm super busy at home with three young children?) We live in an area full of grad students and all my close friends have graduated and moved in the last year--I feel so lonely these days, but it seems like everyone else is in the same boat--lonely, but no time to spare.

Rachael said...

I need new artwork for my bedroom. Where should I start looking? (How hard would it be to paint my own?)

Nikki Douglas said...

I need a new vacuum but am on a tight budget right now so I can't afford the Dyson I love. Anyone have a vacuum they love under $200?

Jessica said...

What's the best way to reach out and make new friends?
* I found a pattern online for a quiet book and told some of my neighbors and girls at church. We now have a sewing group once a week where we get together and sew and let the kids play. It started out with 3 of us and now we have 8. So my suggestion is start a group of some kind. I've found some great friends this way.
A new vacuum? I just bought one a few months ago and I love it! It's a Bissell Powerforce that's bagless. I got it at Wal-Mart for around $50. I absolutely LOVE it! In my opinion it's better than the exspensive one's I've owned before.

justenoughstyle.blogspot.com

Laurel said...

Re: Rachel--making new friends.

When I moved to a new area with two little kiddos, I felt very much like you. It was hard to get to know people. I was busy, but alone a lot of the time.

I started to a mommy and me class in my home. Music, story, craft, and play time. I invited other moms with kids my children's ages. While the kids crafted or played, we moms got to know each other. Those women were my first and best friends here.

Jolena said...

Rachael, my husband and I just did an art project for our living room that cost a little under $50 for the paint, brushes, and 6 16x20 canvases. I will be posting about it later today on my blog, j-squaredonlife.blogspot.com. Come take a look and see if you like the idea or it sparks others. It took us maybe 2 hours, split over the last two nights, to finish it.

Julie said...

Rachel - re, the friend thing...
DITTO to Laurel & starting a playgroup! I'm starting up a mommy-and-me music class in my home soon for our neighborhood friends. I've found that when I'm busy, I can still be lonely, and that having human connections throughout the day (to friends, not just random people) is critical for me. Even when I feel like I have no time, I have to really make it a priority and MAKE time, even if something else will get dropped that day.

JOLENA - eager to click over to your blog and see your project. I have just recently lost my fear of canvas and learned that they are not meant exclusively for "real" artists!

jeanine said...

@Nikki... I've been pretty happy with my vacuum. It was rated a consumer reports "best buy"... it's a Eureka Boss. (Even the Kirby guys were impressed when they were doing their little presentation.)

Rachael said...

quick question for those of you forming get-together groups--have you found it easiest to do this with or without children? Most of the women in my ward have 3 or 4 children, which means that if only three of us get together there's anywhere from 9-12 children running around. A few years ago, I did have a similar group going, but each of us only had one child. I'd love to know how to make this work for my situation now!!

Abbie said...

I need a new bra. A thin layer of padding would be great and I don't want to spend a lot. Where do I go?

Thanks!

Bloom said...

@ Abbie:
Try COSTCO. I recently got 2 really great bras for $19. I think they're Maidenform - they were in a twinpack. I love them.

@ Rachael: I'm not exactly sure how to advise on the get-together groups other than this:
I would not host the group at your house. Too much stress and clean up. Meet at a park or get church keys and play in the gym.

-em

Jonesy said...

Rachael--
My sister and I have 9 kids between the two of us and it's never stopped us from hanging out! Sure, it's a lot louder, but I've found that when my kids are playing with other kids, I hear a LOT less "MOMMY!!!"
Now that spring's on its way and summer right around the corner, start up an "Ice Cream Tuesdays" like Anne's SIL, Jill. Let the kids play at the park & chat it up with the other moms, then grab a cone! I'm willing to bet that there are others who feel exactly the way you do, and are yearning for an opportunity to connect with other women. We ALL need that, 12 kids or 20!!!

Nikki Douglas said...

Thanks for the suggestions for vacuums!

Abbie-I just used one of those $10 cash cards I got in the mail for JC Penneys and with their 50% off bra sale got one I really like for under $6! I usually have only bought at V.S. stores in the mall, so I'm impressed and loved saving the difference! Brand is ambrielle. Really comfortable.

Annette said...

*Little Surprises*
I would like ideas on what special little things I could do for my husband to make him smile. (I loved the 'organize his sock drawer' suggestion I read on here a while back.) I like to do random little things for him, but usually it's just making him a cake or buying him his favorite candy bar at the store. I want to do something that doesn't involve sugar. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance!

Alicia said...

@Annette-I just did an "advent" type calendar for my husband for his birthday. Since he was turning 27, I did it for 27 days. That was A LOT! I mostly did little things for him like making him a coupon book (I know, cheesy). I wrote him love letters, had my kids draw him pictures, made him homemade bread, made his favorite dinners, made him breakfast, etc. He actually liked the letters the best! Maybe a dinner made up of his favorite foods? Even if the foods don't go together normally? I hope that helps!

Oh yeah-Post-its! On the car, mirror, his desk, etc. It's fun getting out of the shower to a sticky note that says I love you!

Alicia said...

Lunch ideas for my kids!

I need to know your "best of" kid lunches! We are stuck in a rut of PB&J, grilled cheese, mac & cheese (notice the lack of variety and nutrition?). Thanks!

Alicia said...

@Abbie-I also suggest JCPenney. Especially when they are having a sale.

Alissa said...

How often should I vacuum my home? 1 mom, 1 dad, 1 toddler.

Bloom said...

@Alicia: for kids' lunches... We do bean burritos a lot. To make it a little more healthy, we do whole wheat tortillas, sometimes add spinach. Another way to veg it up is to do a big ol' fruit and spinach smoothie for lunch with a sandwich or even just a piece of toast. the smoothie is so filling you don't need much else. i'll try to think of more. i get in ruts, too. lunch is an annoying meal to me! oh also, if you feel like you don't want to make mac and cheese a lot, i cook a bunch of pasta once a week (farfalle or macaroni, whatever) and then just keep it in a ziploc all week and warm up individual bowls with a little bit of cheddar or parm cheese for my kids. sometimes we do wheat noodles. not that it's that much better than blue box, but something about it not being neon orange makes me feel better (not that the blue box doesn't have a place in our house!)

@Abbie: Do you have Gilly Hicks in NY? They have the greatest dressing rooms ever--a huge dresser full of every style and size of bra they make in every dressing room. You can just be in there all afternoon trying them all on and finding the perfect one. They are more like VS prices, but I got one 1/2 off, so not too bad.

@Alissa: I try to vacuum once a week (ish)!

@Annette: I like to send lovey texts or one-line emails to my husband during the work day. Also, not that this is so much about 'surprise,' but the days i really have the house peaceful and tidy and dinner almost done by the time he arrives home, he just melts about it. i know that sounds really june cleaver, but honestly, i can remember coming home from teaching and a long commute when we were first married, and he'd have dinner ready when i walked in the door, and it was just the greatest thing ever. for him it's the same. i'll try to think of more ideas...

anne

Matt said...

@ Rachael: Have you ever looked at BallardDesigns.com? They have some cool stuff, and I think they're having a sale right now. I have purchased several things from them, rugs, artwork, etc., and all have been great quality. Good luck, artwork is hard.

Natalie said...

This is Natalie by the way, not some creepy guy named Matt lurking around on a blog where we talk about girly stuff. ;) Not that guys aren't welcome here. It just seemed a little out of place. :)

Savannah said...

@Alissa: My mom gets her carpets professionally cleaned a few times a year, and the carpet cleaner told her that they should be vacuumed at least twice a week to keep them clean. To keep them from getting "wear patterns" you should at least vacuum the high traffic areas daily. If you have hard floors (like me) it's not nearly as much work! I vacuum almost daily because I have a DD crawling around eating everything off the floor I don't vacuum up and because we have a wood burning insert and are always getting little pieces of wood on the floor.

@Nikki: I also like the Eureka Boss for carpeted floors. For hard floors I like the Shark Ultra Lite MultiVac. It's Awesome!!!

Savannah said...

My Question: I have a 10 month old daughter that will play by herself for a few min, and then figures out I'm not right there playing with her and starts looking around and crying. Once she figures out where I am she crawls to me crying and then whines and cries unless I am actively playing with her and interacting with her the entire time she is awake. I love to play with her, but not 100% of the time, and I feel like she needs to learn to play on her own. What do you think? What do I do? (I've tried to let her cry for a while...but she doesn't stop!)

Savannah said...

My Question: I have a 10 month old daughter that will play by herself for a few min, and then figures out I'm not right there playing with her and starts looking around and crying. Once she figures out where I am she crawls to me crying and then whines and cries unless I am actively playing with her and interacting with her the entire time she is awake. I love to play with her, but not 100% of the time, and I feel like she needs to learn to play on her own. What do you think? What do I do? (I've tried to let her cry for a while...but she doesn't stop!)

How It All Began... said...

I need some new jeans. It's been forever since I've bought a new pair. I used to know the names of the "in fashion" jeans. Now I'm totally out of the loop. I don't want to break the bank, but I'd love to look modern. Any suggestions?

jeanine said...

@how it all began...
I got some jeans from Target and love them. I've actually never got a compliment on jeans until these! Plus they're inexpensive. I also love GAP jeans but those tend to be a rare purchase.

Bloom said...

@howitallbegan:
i guess it all depends on your price range. i'd been buying really cheap jeans (like $15)at tjmaxx and the like, but was never getting a really good fit, and was constantly uncomfortable. now i have one pair from the gap that i absolutely love and wear every day. it felt like a good investment to me, and i have no shame in wearing the same clothes repeatedly. ;)

@savannah: i remember that being a tough age with my first. is she entertained if other children are over? does she have a little jumperoo type thing? does she like baby einstein at all? those are a few things that helped Blaine at that stage. i'll keep thinking...
anne

Alissa said...

@Savannah: I'm not sure what the solution is, but I know what the problem is (I'm a Pediatrician). Around 9 months babies develop memory, which is great but can lead to a host of issues. Prior to 9 months if you left the room your baby didn't know you were gone because she didn't remember you. Now she not only knows your gone, but she is not sure that you are ever coming back! I would try to let her play on her own while you are in the room, where she can see you. It might take some practice, but it will likely work. Either way, she'll outgrow this stage in a few months.

@how it all began: IT! jeans are a good bargain. They fit well and look designer. If you want to splurge, I'm a fan of Joe's. You can find them almost half off at Nordstrom Rack (although they are still pricey...)

Erin said...

@Annette: I hide little notes in my husbands clothes and suitcase before he leaves on business trips. (mini post-its work great, can slide into shirt pockets on get stuck into his book for the plane)

@Alissa: I've got a toddler, too, and try to vacuum at least every other day... or whenever crumbs abound!

Erin said...

OK, how about nursing bras? I've yet to find the perfect one. I want good support, nice shape, and snaps/closures that can be re-closed with one hand... am I asking too much?

Cathy said...

@ Erin - depending on your size, I used front closure bras - not nursing bras because I could never find one that fit right, but I am tiny even when full of milk.

@Rachael - find a local store that sells local art work.

@Savannah - I started a game with my boy around that age. When he was in the other room, I would call out "where is (his name)" then he would come find me. I started waiting longer in between going in the other room and calling out for him. He would play on his own, but could hear me so he knew where I was. It is also great for when they hit the next stage of getting into things - if it got too quiet I would call him...

Joan said...

@ Abbie: I second Em's recommendation...the two pack of bras at Costco are fantastic.

@Racheal: I am all about browsing around on line and then painting what I want (not b/c I'm an artist by any means but b/c I enjoy simple art work and can often imitate what I like).
If you like modern/contemporary art I recommend watching David Bromstad on Colorsplash (on HGTV). He shows some simple techniques with a spray bottle filled with water and paint that is pretty phenomenal (depending on your style).
You can also buy inexpensive frames from IKEA or any secondhand store and frame your favorite fabric. I love doing that in a series of three matching frames with different but color coordinating fabric. It is simple and yet a really great way to add art to any room in your home.
Good luck :) I hope those suggestions are helpful.