Recipe-Mango Pineapple Smoothie

Breakfast is my least favorite meal, unless we have something good (think pancakes, waffles, breakfast casserole, etc.). I don’t like very many cereals which is of course the normal breakfast food. But my new favorite thing to have for breakfast is a smoothie/shake. They’re relatively easy to make, taste good, and are also good for you.

My favorite smoothie/shake so far is my Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Milkshake . But another good one, and probably healthier since it doesn’t have chocolate syrup, is a Mango Pineapple Smoothie. My sister came up with this recipe and I thought I’d share it with you.

Mango Pineapple Smoothie

You Will Need:

2 cups Pineapple Juice
1 cup Greek Yogurt
2 tablespoons Chia Seeds
1 cup Frozen Mango Chunks
1 cup Frozen Pineapple Chunks

Make It:

1. Combine the juice, yogurt, and chia seeds in the blender. Blend on high to combine.
2. Add the fruit and blend until smooth and the consistency is to your liking. To make it thinner at more juice and to make it thicker add more fruit.

For ease in printing download the PDF file: Mango Pineapple Smoothie.

Enjoy! Blogging Tutorial-How to Create a Front Page Slideshow a.k.a Featured Posts Slider

Since I was totally new to blogging I’m still learning how to utilize all the features and make my blog better!

I wanted to format my home page so that I could have a slideshow of pictures linked to some of my most popular posts above my actual feed of posts. I wanted something like this blog has. After a long while I figured it out and I wanted to share with you in case you want it and haven’t figured it out yet.

Here’s how to create a Featured Posts Slider on your blog.

  1. You need to determine if your theme actually has this option. Not all do. To find a theme that has a Post slider go to this page.
  2. Once you have a theme that has the post slider feature you need to determine the requirements for activating it. Once you fulfill these requirements your post slider will automatically appear on your home page. To Determine the requirements go to the information page for your theme. For example: I am running the Forever theme so my info page is here.
  3. The three requirements (which I think are the same except for the pixel width and height for the image which is different for each theme) are:

A. Make your post a sticky post. To do this go to the top right corner of your screen while editing a post. You’ll see the Publish box. Under that click edit right next to “visibility”. Select “stick this post to the front page”. Be aware that not only will making your post sticky make it show up in the post slider on your homepage (once you fulfill the other requirements) but it may also stay on your home page above the rest of your recent posts (this will depend on your theme, in the forever theme if you have a featured posts slider, whatever posts are on that slider will not show up in the actual feed).  To learn more about sticky posts go here.

B. You also need to set a featured image for your post. To do this go to the lower right corner of your screen while editing a post. You’ll see the box entitled Featured Image. Hit “set featured image”. It will have you select an image from the your media. Enter your caption if you like then hit “set featured image” and you’re done. At this point go to your home page and see if your post slider showed up and how the pictures look. If it didn’t show up head down to point C. below to edit your pictures. If they look great, congratulations you did it! But also be aware that not only will setting a featured image make your post slider work, it will also do other things. To learn more about featured images go here.

C. When I created my post slider all the post I wanted to showed up, however, if yours aren’t the right size they might not. To edit your image so it will show up  go back to the lower right hand corner and click on the featured image in your post editing window. It will bring you up with a smaller screen with a right sidebar. In this sidebar click edit. Then in the top of the sidebar in the next window is the scale function. Refer back to the information page for your theme to determine how big your picture has to be.  Type in one of these numbers, width first, height last. And click scale. It will say image saved and then click the back button at the bottom of the window. It will then take you back to the original window, double check and make sure the size is correct in the right sidebar and click set featured image. Make sure it shows up on your homepage and you’re done!

Now you have a post slider! I hope this tutorial helped you

Note: If you decide you want to remove the post slider just go back and reverse the steps you took. Remove the featured image and remove the sticky post feature.

Knitting Technique: Continental Knitting

It’s always great to be able to do something faster and more efficiently. This applies to knitting and is why I’m going to introduce you to a new method of knitting called continental knitting.

My mom was introduced to this technique by another mom at a speech and debate tournament (there can be a lot of down time if you’re a parent and you’re not judging a round so both my mom and the other mom had brought along their knitting). I learned it and have been using it on my simple projects. It takes a minute to get a hang of it, but after you do it can be much faster.

So that you can take advantage of this faster method check out these two videos: The Knit Stitch (Continental Method) and The Purl Stitch (Continental Style).

Project-Luggage Tags

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This school year my family began doing speech and debate. One of the speeches I chose to do is an illustrated oratory (Don’t know what this is? Watch a national qualifying one from 2008 about Caffeine here). When going to tournaments with this speech it adds more things to carry. Thankfully at tournaments they have these awesome IO storage rooms so you can bring in your stuff on Day 1 and leave it overnight until the whole tournament is over without having to lug it back and forth from the hotel. Since there are so many people’s stuff in the one room and several people have the same bag for my boards as I do I put my name on all of my things that I leave there. For my easel I stuck a label on it, for my box (a shoe box which I covered in paper to look nicer) I wrote on it, and for my bag I used a luggage tag.

For my first tournament I made an improvised luggage tag using some cardstock, but for my later tournaments I sewed myself a luggage tag out of some leftover fabric. Here’s how I did it:

I figured there was a pattern out there so I searched Pinterest and sure enough lots popped up. After looking at several of them I chose this one.

I decided to make three using three different scraps of fabric leftover from past projects.

I followed her instructions except since I didn’t have any vinyl I used page protectors and just cut them up. It worked really well. To sew the page protectors on I used a business card as a guide. I used tape to stick it on to the tag and then placed the page protector piece on top and used big clothspins to hold it in place. Then I stitched using the business card as a guide. It worked very well.

Side note: Several people mentioned using a teflon foot to sew the vinyl on so the vinyl doesn’t stick to your sewing machine foot. I didn’t have any problems with the page protectors sticking and I used a regular foot so if you use page protectors you shouldn’t have to worry about that.

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After I finished all three luggage tags (can you tell I like purple?) I used Microsoft Publisher and made some pretty business cards. They fit perfectly!

This project is great for using up fabric scraps and would make a great gift for a traveler. Plus, they’re super easy; I made three of them in an hour or two. I hope you enjoy making some of your own.

Happy Sewing!

Unique Gift Wrapping II

I told y’all I would be doing more posts on unique gift wrapping and now here’s another one. This idea was actually my mom’s and I thought I’d share it.

We were giving a salad bowl as a gift for a bridal shower. The only problem is that it’s big and breakable so packing it in a gift bag would be difficult and it would be hard to use wrapping paper, so… we used a table cover. My mom picked up a pretty turquoise disposable table cover at Walmart for only $0.97 (cheaper than a gift bag!). She put the bowl in the middle and gathered it up and around the top, then used some ribbon to keep it gathered. Since the table cover was a little big she tucked some of the “fluff” back into the ribbon. It turned out looking really nice. (I wish I had a picture but I neglected to take one, oops!).

So the next time you have a large, oddly shaped gift to wrap pick up a colored table cover and start wrapping!