Thursday, January 20, 2011

Blog Button Help

I'm a newbie blogger.  I'm learning as I go and I'm thrilled to have found a few tutorials on Blog Buttons to help me along.

I used "How to Make a Blog Button" at blogging with Amy to go to to make a quick blog button for now.  I can always go make a better one later.  While there are great pictures with this tutorial and it seems very thorough, I believe she's using Word Press so at times it seems different than what I'd need to do in blogger.

Next, I found a blog that Jennie Shell originally created as a place to play & tweak so that she wouldn't mess up her real blog & now it has morphed into a blog help blog.  The blog now has a bunch of tutorials she wrote to help fellow bloggers.  Although, I get the feeling that blogging was a passing phase and she doesn't blog much now.  Jennie makes creating a clickable blog button (using html code) sound easy.

Jennie also has a tutorial on adding the code under your button for others to grab.  However, I had a glitch that I couldn't figure out till I saw the next tutorial (which also had a glitch, but I figured it out..sort of).

Skye at Real Mom Reviews has a quick tutorial for how to add a "Grab My Button" widget.  This is best for people that don't need a lot of words, but would like to see pictures.  She had the code I copied to put the box under my button so others could grab my code.  It worked, but the text box wasn't centered under my button at.  I messed with it adding <center></center> into the code and it looked right, but then I changed blog layouts & now it still needs tweaking.

here's the tutorial...

Now for all those blog buttons that you've added to your blog haphazardly, Faith at Simplicity has this tutorial to clean them up.  I also had to go through and either add or take out a </center> or a <center> in between some buttonss to get two buttons on each line (before I changed the blog layout).  I didn't get it all figured out though because I still had a few lines that are one button lines.  So I changed my blog layout

Then I decided to check out the next two tutorial links on making the blog buttons scroll, but as I post this I still haven't got around to scrolling my blog buttons.  Hopefully one or both of the links will be helpful.

and another

Soon I will attempt adding hyperlinks in my posts so that you don't have to look at those long links.  It just seems like a pain in the butt, but it's really not that big of a deal

New You 2011 "What's Your Food Weakness?"

Thursday Weight Support Loss Link-Up

The question of the week is..."What's your Food Weakness?"

My biggest weakness is sugary foods.  My sweet tooth has been quite active lately.  So, I will need to plan ahead this upcoming week.  Most important is weeding out the junk food in this house and having fresh fruit handy when my sweet tooth kicks in.

Lately I have not been motivated to eat right.  I want to be motivated to eat right, but I'm just not that into it.  So I need to have accountability and that is why I am linking up with the "New You".  My sister in law is supposed to be coming out here from Texas soon as we're planning on supporting each other and eating right together.  She's even checking into bringing her daughter out here to complete her second semester of school here in California.  

Food is only part of the weight loss equation.  Exercise is key.  I went on a great hike last Friday.  I ended up using a hard framed back carrier for the baby and boy did I work up an appetite!  It was not only a great workout, but I was able to spend some quality time with my girlfriends on the trail.  Jamie had some good tips about making easy changes in her diet.  One of the things she's doing is no whites after 5pm.  So she can have the baked potato as long as she has it before 5pm.  I love her motto for 2011...Celery sticks instead of chips!

I'm looking forward to another great hike this Friday.  I would like to set specific exercise goals this next week & then work on better meal planning.  I would like to lose another 25 lbs.  So it's time to step it up with my physical activity & step it down with the sugary foods.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I Want to Try Rockin Green Detergent, but...

Rockin' Green
I'm fairly new to the mom blogs, but wow I keep seeing Rockin Green Cloth Diaper detergent coming up in reviews & giveaways.  I know many people who use cloth diapers swear by Rockin' Green detergent for their diaper laundry, but I kinda have my cloth diaper laundry under control right now.  I mean in the beginning I started getting the ammonia smell coming from the wet diapers for a while, but it's gone now.  I rinsed (& rinsed & rinsed) the ammonia buildup out of the diapers & then found that once I stopped adding vinegar in the rinse the ammonia smell went away.  I've heard other people say they had to add vinegar to their rinse cycle to perfect their diaper laundry routine.  I guess it just depends on your machine, the soap you use, your water, or some combination of all of the above.

I've changed my wash routine a few times, but for now what's working for me is using a dry pail method, a diaper sprayer, making sure that I only use a little bit of soap, and a simple hot wash cycle with an extra rinse,.  When I change baby's wet diapers they go straight into the diaper pail.  When they're poopy I put them in a small plastic tub & when I have a moment I take it to the bathroom to use the BunGenius diaper sprayer (that I found on craigslist & installed myself) to spray the poop off.  On wash days I dump the diapers in the old sink by my washer & give them a quick rinse while I'm starting a hot wash cycle, set with an extra rise & extended spin.  I use a very small amount of "free & clear" detergent (to first line).  I do wonder if that small amount of brightener that some "free" detergents use really is all that bad for covers & AIOs over time hmmmm

So I'd like to go out and buy a bag of Rockin Green, but with all of the current Rockin Green Giveaways out there right now I'm really hoping I'll win a bag to try haha  I didn't win the Three Ps in a Pod Rockin Green giveaway that ended the other day, but there's still a few more Rockin Green giveaways that are still open.  And more popping up all the time.  Who knows, maybe I'll win one of these!?  Check out some Rockin Green giveaways here...

Diary of a Devil Dog Wife
Diary of a Devil Dog Wife "Funk Rock" giveaway ends 1/19

Real Mom Reviews ends 1/19
Sweet T Makes Three ends 1/25

What Mama Wants ends 2/5

Oh So Savvy Mom
Oh So Savvy Mom

I'm Just Getting Started...ABE

A Blogtastic Extravaganza has begun!  Many blogs have themes for their giveways and some just have a bunch of things thy're going to giveaway.  It ends on the 1/22 so I'll be entering like crazy today after pasting this lol

Before 6am I entered into the following ABE giveaways before my husband kicked me off his laptop lol

Real Mom Reviews $75 Gift Certificate (to Zutano)

SAPsMaMa's "Going Green for the New Year"

PWM Button
The Penny Wise Mama's Prize Packages - Bonbon Charms, BabyLegs & Jasmere

What Mama Wants" Fantastic Fluff"

Happenings of the Harper Household

Happenings of The Harper Houshold's "Making safety Fun"

How cute is this?

The Penny Wise Mama is giving away an adorable hat of your choice from 
Blueberry Hill.  Love the boy hats!  The giveaway ends on 1/31 at 12am MST. 

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Friday, January 14, 2011

Frugal Fridays Blog Hop

I can't believe I'm doing blog hops already when I don't even have my blog the way I want it, but I figure maybe someone will stop by & offer me some suggestions and/or it'll make me get on top of it faster lol

I decided to try the Frugal Friday Hop because I'm a tightwad at heart.  A while ago, my mom got me one of those books '101 Ways to be Cheap' (or something like that) and all my 12 year old son says when she showed it to him is, "Oh my mom knows more ways than that to be cheap".

Well, my husband is asking me to get off of his lap top so I better listen.  I guess I'll be blog hopping after I catch some ZZZZZZZZZZZs. 

Thursday, January 13, 2011

My Diaper Stash

Here's my cloth diaper stash...mixed pocket diapers, prefolds & covers, grobaby/grovia diapers, gdiapers & even some older WAHM made ones.  No disposables ever.  I use the diaper stacker for grobaby inserts.

Weight Loss Link Up

I'm checking out a weight loss link up today.  I haven't shared my blog with all my friends yet as I'm learning & changing things constantly, but this is a first step in sharing blog.  Hopefully I'll meet some friends that'll point me in the right direction :-)

I can use the blog help and the Lord knows I can use the motivation to get back on track to lose the baby weight.  I'm planning to go on a good hike in the morning with some girlfriends.   I'm going to wear the baby in a SSC on my back & see how that goes.  I know that I can drop the weight & get fit again because I've done it before, but I haven't been as motivated as I'd like to be.  Baby is 6 months on the 15th so I better get a move on it.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Hot Baths are Waaaaaay Underrated

Clip Art Image: Woman Relaxing In a Tub Full of Bubbles
As I rock my fussy baby & type with one hand, I am thinking about how wonderful it was to get a nice hot bath with epsom salts earlier this evening.  Never mind that I never made it to the shower earlier in the day & had enough spit up on me today that I could have used 3 showers.  Seriously, why is it that I don't use that jacuzzi tub more?  I even got to shave my legs.  God only knows the last time I did that.  Hey it's winter.  I'm wearing pants.  It's not like I let people see my legs like that.  After soaking a bit, shaving, washing & conditioning my hair, the sounds of stomping tennis shoes (from Mr. Flash, my 8 year old) and dog nails on the tile outside the bathroom door told me my 20 minutes of bliss were over.  I jumped out, threw on a robe & hollered to Mr. Cool, my 12 year old, to see if he was dressed & ready for his basketball practice.  Mr. Wonderful, yes thats my husband, did the taxi job to & from practice tonight.  I love that man.

Well, the baby is not so fussy now, but he's wide awake.  I think I'll go text Mr. Tall, my 18 year old step-son, to see how his 1st semester finals week is coming along.  Yikes!  One one semester, then he's off to college.  Funny how it just hits you at times how fast the time is going.  We should all slow down long enough for hot baths because they're waaaaaay underrated.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Visit Natural Parents Network

The Penny-Wise Mama has an Inspired By Finn Review & Giveaway ends 1/23

The Penny-Wise Mama has an Inspired By Finn review & giveaway going on right now.  We just got the baby an amber teething necklace recently because he was so miserable and I really think it's helping.  I'd love to try a bracelet for my baby-induced wrist pain or a necklace for my current neck-ache & sporadic headaches.

check it out here...

Inspired by Finn Review & Giveaway (Baltic Amber Teething Necklace) ENDS 1/23

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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Why I'm Starting to Blog...

I've jumped onto this bloggin' bandwagon & while I'm not going to commit to writing x times a week, I hope to catch some glances of what it's like to raise men in America before it slips by so fast that I forget what it was like to have my baby drifting of to sleep in my lap as I'm on the computer (yep he's almost a goner) or what it was like to juggle baseball tryouts, basketball games, church & family time on the weekend (like our upcoming weekend).  I'm a pretty busy mom raising a pack of boys here, so why am I blogging?  Well, I haven't found the time to journal, scrapbook, or even videotape the way I'd like to...and well, writing a blog is a sign of the times, along with joining twitter & facebook.  I've been on facebook for quite a while now, but I've just signed up with twitter & blogger as allboymama.  So if I ever have a girl I'll have to change that name....Now that's funny & scary!

I seriously have a sign hanging on a wall in the living room that reads "DUDE RANCH".  Currently our oldest, my step-son, is 18 years old, next we have our 12 year old, 8 year old, and the baby will be 6 months old on January 15th.  My dog is also male.  I'm "not allowed" to get a cat, but if I did get one I would rather have a male cat too.  Everyone of our boys is such a blessing & I can't imagine life without them.  They have a pretty cool Dad too.  I am so thankful for the way their daddy works so hard and proud of the father that he has become over the years.

Please be patient if you follow my blog from the get go.  I will be learning as I'm doing here.  If you have any tips for me I'm all ears.  I wanted to learn more before jumping into the blog scene, but upon entering a few online giveaways recently I noticed that I would get more entries for tweeting & grabbing blog buttons.  Soooo, I figure I might as well win a few things while I'm learning, right?
One Savvy Mom

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

updated button

2011 things I'd like to do...

I'm not really going to post 2011 things I'd like to do...well not in this one post anyway.  You see, I always have these ideas swimming in my head about things I'd like to do and somehow I don't get around to doing them all or I don't start all I've been wanting to start, but mostly I don't finish all I've set out to do.  Maybe I do too much...but I like being busy.  Maybe I need to simplify my life...but that sounds boring.  There are just so many things I'd like to do, would like to learn, and would like to do better.  So I've decided I'm going to put some things into writing here that I'd like to do in 2011.

This year, I will attempt reading through the Bible.  I've attempted this before, but have never completely read through the entire Bible.  I'm not going to beat myself up over it if I don't make it again, but I'm going to try harder.  I've uploaded the Bible unto my son's itouch using and will be using the NLT 1year Chronological Bible reading plan.

I am gearing up to lose the rest of the baby weight & get fit again.  I will aim to eat healthier & get regular exercise.  I want to be cooking more this year, trying more easy crock pot recipes so that the drive thru window doesn't need to be visited regularly during baseball season.  I would love to get back to doing 3 cardio days & 3 strength training days.  I would be happy with a minimum of 3 hard workouts or even 30 minutes of daily exercise.  Losing 30 more pounds would really be lovely.

I am going to take sewing lessons!  I have been wanting to learn how to sew for too long & am sick of putting it off.  Now that I have a new baby again I keep seeing all these things I'd love to make, but I've been intimidated by the needle.

I want to keep a natural, healthy home.  I intend to learn how to start making & using natural cleaners in my home.  Yes that also means I need to get off my butt & pick up a bit more around here.  I want to get better about delegating chores to the boys as well.  

I want to do some major purging!  While the garage seems like an overwhelming place to start, I sure hope I get to weeding through the garage.  I need to start small with zones or rooms in the house before tackling the garage.  Once the baby weight falls off, my closet will be a fun thing to purge :-)

I want to read more - books & blogs.  One of these days I'm going to bite the bullet & take a speed reading class.  For now I will focus on keeping up on my Bible reading plan, but I need to make the time to read all of the wonderful things I come across.

One of the many things I've been wanting to do for a while now is start a blog.  I guess I can check that off now.  I decided instead of reading more about how to start up a blog that I would just learn by doing.  Whether I keep it up or not will be another matter haha

Happy 2011!