The “Mother of All” Fall Cleaning Checklists

I’m a bit of a clean and order freak. I’ve compiled my ultimate fall cleaning and winter preparation wishlist. It’s a bit overboard but it’s full of safety items and things often overlooked. There’s also a few things that will help you save energy this winter if you live in a really cold area. Click to download the PDF for easy printing!

The Ultimate Fall Cleaning Checklist Free Download via

Booism: Good vs. Bad


Boo: OWWW, my knee hurts even worser now!
Me: That’s because the antiseptic is working and killing all the germs.
Boo: So it’s like a war, they are punching inside of me.
Me: A little like that.
Boo: But the BAD GUYS are winning!
Me: Don’t worry, the good guys eventually win.


Easy Balsamic Dressing and My Favorite Salad

Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via


This is one of my favorite dressings and salads. I used to order a similar salad a few times a week from Dean and Deluca when I lived in NC. Then we moved to Palm Desert where there isn’t a Dean and Deluca so I was forced to recreate it for myself.

To make the dressing I use:

Balsalmic Vinegar
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
Fresh Ground Pepper
Minced Garlic


Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via


I measure out 1 cup of EVOO and 1 cup of balsamic vinegar….


Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via


……and pour it into the blender. Then I add some fresh ground pepper and a 1/2 tsp of minced garlic. Then I blend on medium for about 2 minutes:


Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via


The dressing ends up creamy and just like the restaurants serve it. I store it in a jar because it will keep for a few days. If it starts to separate I just shake it up really well:


Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via


For my salad I buy fire roasted red peppers and cut them up in to small pieces:


Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via


I layer mixed organic greens, the fire roasted peppers, feta cheese and pine nuts and then toss in the balsamic dressing:


Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via




Easy Balsamic Dressing and Salad Recipe via

Photo of the Day: An Unlikely Friend

Diesel doesn’t like women. At 2.5 lbs, he’s attacked 99% of all female visitors to our house. But every once in a while, if he’s not feeling well or is scared of something, he’ll take to Lisa. He scratches at her leg and hangs out at her feet until she picks him up and puts him on her lap or right in front of her computer. Every other day he’ll snap and growl at her if she even says “hi” to him.

Southern Style Giveaway

Enter to win a copy of Southern Living Style in a giveaway I’m holding over at The Home Ec! Click through the image to enter through Sunday night:

Boo Style: A Digital Short

I took Boo to Old Navy yesterday.  She never gets to shop for anything “store bought” and I thought it would be fun to let her get a few outfits for the fall. She calls the mannequins her “other family” and has a slight obsession with the doggy….so I lugged my T1i camera along to test the HD video out.  I love how the video turned out and I love the outfits Boo picked.  We ended up spending $150 and ended up with the most fabulous faux leather riding boots and 7 amazing outfits….some of which Boo pulled from the Boys section!



Here is her $150 wardrobe… a pair of Joe’s Skinny Jeans (which are from her grandparents because I don’t even own Joe’s Jeans):

Organizing Electronics

Tips for Organizing Electronics via


This is what my electronics box used to look like. I could never find anything and had no idea which cords went to what. During my organization spree last month I empties out the box, gathered every electronic manual, accessory, software CD and box from around the house and set to work on creating an organized system.


Tips for Organizing Electronics (Before pic) via

First I created envelopes for items that are rarely used or need to probably be donated or sold:

(more after the jump)

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Ask Lil Blue Boo: A Typical Day

As part of my ongoing small business series I’ve been compiling questions from readers. One of the most often asked questions is: What is a typical day like… to you fit it all in? Sometimes I never fit it all in! Couldn’t we all use another 10 hours a day?


What’s a typical day like for you? Do you work weekends, too? – Amy

I don’t know if I have a typical day….I’m usually all over the place never focusing on just one project. I start working at 8:30am and work up until 5pm. I have 2 full time employees that show up at 9am sharp every morning and a few part time helpers that come and go throughout the week. Lil Blue Boo would be a disaster without them.  I’ll work late at night for an hour or two on the computer once Boo goes to bed.

If I work on the weekends it’s only on creative fun projects that the whole family is involved in. For example, we might build something fun or start some artwork. It’s not work to me though….it’s more of a lifestyle. I just like to make stuff and so does the rest of the family. I don’t watch sports and I don’t enjoy shopping so that frees up a lot of time!

One day last week I took photos of everything I did to try and document what a “typical day” might look like:


(more after the jump)

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Vintage Barbie – Handmade Style

When I was at my mom’s house this summer I was helping her clean out some closets and I found a huge box of old Barbies….a mixture of mine and my mother’s from when she was little.

My grandmother Beauty handmade the tiniest little fashions for my mother’s Barbies.  I remember this outfit was one of my favorites growing up. I loved the drop waist ball gown and the matching reversible coat:


I love the vintage prints of these house dresses:

(more after the jump)

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Photo of the Day: Another 2,000 Buttons

It stormed all day here today and most of the day our Internet was out. So I spent the day finishing up this button art of the Mona Lisa. It’s REALLY hard to get detailed features to look right with buttons! But I think I got close enough so people will recognize her….and now Frida has a friend. I’ve got 2 more pieces in mind…so stay tuned! Not sure what I’m going to do with these yet…..


I videotaped the process for this one as well and I’m just looking for the perfect song to accompany it.  Click here to view the Frida video if you want to see the entire button art process!


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