No Knead Bread

This is one of my favorite recipes!  Seriously, you can make bakery style, 4-dollars-a-loaf, bread in your own kitchen.  If I can do it, you can do it.  I’ve used it for sandwiches, and for a side with soup (perfect for dunking) and my husband just pulls a chunk off and dips it in olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  It’s amazingly good.

You will need:

Flour

Yeast

Water

Dutch Oven or Heavy Bottom Soup Pot

That’s it!  Find the rest of the instructions here.

January 21, 2010 at 9:30 pm Leave a comment

Soap Nuts – All Natural Laundry Detergent!

I first heard of soap nuts when I was looking for a laundry detergent suitable for washing cloth diapers.  I needed something without fragrance and something that wouldn’t leave build up on the diapers, which, overtime, leaves cloth diapers unable to absorb moisture.

I took this description off of the NaturOli website, where I purchased my soap nuts.  “Very simply, soap nuts are the dried shells (or husks) from the soapberry (or soap berry nut). These berries are the fruit from a quite unique tree species. These shells contain a substance called saponin that produces a soaping effect. Saponin is a 100% natural alternative to chemical laundry detergent and cleansers.”

I originally ordered a small sample, which got me about 4-5 loads of laundry.  It was 2.25.  The soap nuts came in the mail, and I used them to wash ALL of my soon-to-be-arriving baby girl’s clothes.  That was a job!  If you’re ever expecting a girl, just be prepared for lots of clothes…it’s son fun!  These soap nuts were awesome!  You throw 4-5 in the canvas bag that comes with the order, and that’s it!  If you use cold water to wash, you’ll need to soak them in a glass of hot tap water for 2 minutes and they will be good to go.  1 canvas bag of 5 will last you 4-5 washes.  I ordered a 68oz. bag and it is going to take me a very long time to go through it!

Because these are natural and have no added fragrance, your clothes will not smell what we think of as “clean.”  They have no smell when coming out of the laundry!  Weird I know.  You can add a drop of essential oil if you wish.  Also, the soap nuts have a bit of a vinegar smell, but your laundry won’t end up smelling like that.

So, if you’re looking for a great, low cost laundry detergent that is safe for baby, cloth diapers, and your family, give soap nuts a try!

January 20, 2010 at 10:41 am 2 comments

Fuzzi Bunz Cloth Diaper Review and Cloth Diapering Tips

When I found out I was pregnant with our first child, I did a lot of research on how to have a baby without breaking the bank.  We didn’t go crazy and buy every thing the baby registry checklist told us we needed. I wanted our daughter to have what she needed, but didn’t want to have our small condo filled with expensive baby gear, that probably wouldn’t get used enough.

I started considering cloth diapers, first of all.  I didn’t realize how far cloth diapers had come!  Moms are no longer limited to those white diapers that have to be held together with safety pins…which SCARE me!  Cloth diapers have come SO FAR!

I finally decided that pocket diapers would be the way to go for our family.  There is an outerlayer (the diaper) that has a waterproof fabric on the outside, and a soft fleece on the inside.  You slide a liner into the “pocket” and that is what absorbs the moisture.  These diapers snap shut with sewn in snaps.  They come in all sizes, and more recently, one size fits all.  Yes, there is a bigger up front cost, but you will save SO MUCH compared to disposables, trust me.

I ended up deciding to purchase Fuzzi Bunz.  I ordered 24 small to start.  They have been perfect.  No diaper rash for our little girl!  Check out the Fuzzi Bunz website for more information.  I ordered mine from Ebay.  They were brand new and significantly cheaper than some online stores.  You can also find slightly used on craigslist or even resell them there when you are done with them!

Helpful tips for cloth diapering:

  • Start out with 16-24 diapers.  I have to do laundry about every 2-3 days with 24 diapers.  It has definitely slowed down as my baby has gotten a little older.  At the very beginning we used newborn disposable diapers just to make it easier on us.
  • Get a diaper pail that works for you.  I ended up ordering the Fuzzi Bunz In and Out Mess Free Diaper Bag .  I have it hung on the back of the nursery door, and it’s so easy to just open it up, shake out the liner and throw the diaper in.  When you’re ready to wash, just unzip the bottom of the bag and all the diapers fall out into the washing machine.  You don’t have to touch anything!  Throw the bag in at the same time too!
  • Get a small zipper wet bag.  These are for when you are out and about and need a place to put the soiled diaper.  I bought a Planet Wise Wet Bag in size small.  I think it was around 9 bucks.  I can stuff 3 diapers inside…more than enough for on the go.
  • Washing instructions:  While baby is still breastfed or bottle fed, #2 does not need to be rinsed or shaken off before washing.  Once it becomes more solid, the contents need to be shaken off into the toilet before washing. 1.  Run a cold water rinse.  2.  Run a hot water wash.  3.  Dry everything, diapers, liners, bags in the dryer.
  • Use a fragrance free detergent.  I use soap nuts (stay tuned for review on these miracle babies) and a scoop of Oxy Clean Baby.  I haven’t had any stains remain on the diapers and they always smell fresh and clean!

If you have any additional questions about cloth diapering, please leave a comment and I will respond!

January 19, 2010 at 6:22 pm 2 comments

Awesome Giveaway at Centsational Girl!

sara norris ranunculus 3

Go check out Centsational Girl’s fabulous giveaway!  She’s featuring Sara Norris’ fantastic artwork, and the giveaway is for a $50 gift certificate to her Etsy shop!  Go check it out…now!

January 15, 2010 at 1:32 pm Leave a comment

Baby Girl Sundress

Ok, please understand this. I am NOT a seamstress. Yes, I have a sewing machine and I’ve made my fair share of curtain panels and throw pillows, but I always take short-cuts and am usually very impatient, which leaves me with a very sub-par product in the end.
I’m currently getting my masters degree in education (integrating the arts to be specific) and I only have three more months to go! Whohoo! For one of my final projects, we were instructed to create a project that incorporated two art forms. Our current instructor is very artsy and in turn, pretty lax about what our project could end up looking like. I decided I was going to take a chance and make a dress for my three month old daughter for her to wear this summer, and write a poem about the process for her to read later in life.

I came across this great tutorial on Think Liz.  She’s got great free sewing tutorials of her own, as well as a whole slew of ones she’s located around the web.

This dress took me about 2 hours!  During my daughter’s nap time to be exact.  I really thought I would have to spread it out over a couple of days, but It’s really simple!  And remember, I’m NOT a seamstress!  I don’t have good fabric scissors or one of those boards that help you cut straight lines…nope, not here, and it was still easy!

The one thing that went wrong was the tie.  I screwed it up, mostly because I didn’t cut a straight line…maybe I do need one of those boards after all 🙂  So instead, I used a simple ribbon.  I’m actually going to go buy a brown ribbon to give it more contrast.

I can’t wait to see my daughter wear this when it gets warmer out…and she can also wear it as a top as she grows.  I’m also excited to make this simple dress for all the baby showers I have coming up.  Give it a try…if I can do it, anyone can!

January 12, 2010 at 1:01 pm Leave a comment

9 Dollar Art

During my daughter’s nap time, I’ve been cruising the internet.  First it was just Facebook and Gmail.  Then some Pottery Barn and Nordies.  Then I stumbled upon some decorating blogs, and man…there is SO MUCH out there!  I keep finding new blogs everyday!  It’s so fun!  I even got Google Reader and subscribed to them, so they show up there for me…wow, technology is so cool.

Crafty Nest is one of the fun blogs I found.  She has such great ideas, and a lot of them are very frugal too.  Perfect for when you are on a budget.  Another one I found that I love it Dollar Store Crafts.  The things they come up with are amazing…and all found at the Dollar Store.  Score!

So while perusing Crafty Nest I found this.  AMAZING!  I have been meaning to do a botanical print project forever, but never got around to it.  I even had an old window pane from my grandmother’s house saved in my parents garage for this purpose….but caved and let my mom sell it at her garage sale this summer because I didn’t think I’d ever have the time.  Well now I have lots of time…that is when the baby decides that nap time is a cool thing.  Otherwise I’m cooingandbabblingandchangingdiapersandstillinmysweatsat1:00watchingdaysofourlives.  Yikes, babies sure do change everything, don’t they?

Ok, so I didn’t have the window pane, but these prints are free.  FREE!  Download them here!  I used our home printer, which is a good one, but not super nice or anything.  I didn’t even use photo paper.  I found some heavier gloss card stock type paper lying around and used that.  It worked!  And they look good.  I didn’t even bother sizing them.  I went into print options and clicked on fit to page and it came out fine.  I did I have to snip a bit to fit into the frames, but more on that later.

So, now that I had these beautiful illustrations all printed out, I needed frames.  Frames can be expensive and I’m working on a tight budget here.  I also wanted to hang 9 of them, so even a 4 or 5 dollar frame would add up to quite a bit.  Using inspiration from Dollar Store Crafts, I decided to go with Dollar Tree frames.  Are they beautiful and well made?  No.  But they got the job done, and I’m pleased with how it came out. All I did was cut the images to fit in the frames.  I used 8×10 frames except for one 81/2 by 11.  Can you tell which one??!!  The Dollar Tree only had 8 of one kind, so I had to make due.  My original plan was to glue all the frames together to give it a window effect, but I am lazy and think it’s fine the way it is.

The total for the project?  9 bucks!  That’s not a lot to fill a blank wall with BIG impact.

So, what frugal projects are on your to-do list?

January 8, 2010 at 7:16 pm Leave a comment

Fabulously Classic Relaunch!

Hello! It has been way, way, way too long!! Well, life is much different around here now that there is a baby and I am a SAHM. (Stay-at-home-mom…it’s ok, I had to google it when I first saw it).

I’m excited to say that I’ve decided to relaunch Fabulously Classic! You’ll find posts on cooking, craftyness, motherhood, marriage and faith. I hope that you find my words encouraging. Here’s t0 a new year full of lots of fun and adventure!

January 7, 2010 at 2:35 pm Leave a comment

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