Peanut Butter & Fruit Pizza

Summer time is just about halfway over and we’ve been trying to get creative in our lunch routine. Typically it’s a PB&J lunch day so the Clever Guy and I came up with a Peanut Butter & Fruit Pizza for a little change. Of course whats nice about this recipe is kids can help and even older kids can make it themselves. I’m trying to think of clever ways for him to take this to lunch during the school year, maybe rolled up or a “DIY” kit.


Peanut Butter & Fruit Pizza

Kids Can Cook Peanut Butter & Fruit Pizza

Ingredients:

  • Tortillas
  • Peanut Butter
  • Fruits: Bananas, apples etc

Spread the peanut butter on the tortilla, then cut into 4ths. Decorate with fruit and you are done!

 

 

This is a sponsored post with Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye. All opinions are my own.

How to tie dye a wreath for the Summer

The other day I was shopping with the Clever Teen for back to school supplies ( I know, already) and she pointed to a backpack she thought was cute. She had pointed to a tie dye one and I thought she meant another one. So when I tried to clarify, she said that she meant the tie dye one and this trend was in. It’s so hard to keep up with what’s in and what’s not, which is a bonus to having a teen! I remember having so much fun creating tie dye shirts when I was younger (in the 80′s to be precise) and I should have known this trend would be in again!

Since she showed an interest in tie-dying, I told her that I had some Tulip Tie Dye kits and she was excited to help come up with some designs for shirts and a fun craft.

Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye Kit

The Tulip Kits we received made the tie dying easy! Kids can easily make their own creations and you don’t need a lot of space. Plus the easy clean up makes it great for moms! I highly recommend the large pack with all of the colors, it comes with gloves, plastic wrap, rubber bands and of course a wide variety of colors. This pack has enough dye to color 36 projects!

What’s cool about these kits is you just add water for beautiful bold color! Dyes are permanent and color-fast, so they won’t fade in the wash. You can also purchase refill powders so you can keep the bottles.

How to tie dye t-shirts

Check out these fun shirts we made!

My favorite is the first one which is the spiral, how cool does that look?! The second one is one we created by wrapping the shirt diagonally. The third one is a straight edge and the last one is one we created by pulling up different sections of the shirt.

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Step 1: Use the rubber bands to start the design process. These kits from Tulip come with instructions for many different ways to create a shirt. For this one, I did a straight across design.

Step 2: Spray a color on each section. Be sure not to drip any colors on other sections.

how to to do a spiral tie dye
This is the spiral tie dye shirt and it was probably the easiest and coolest looking!

Step 3: Wrap the shirt in the plastic drop cloth and allow it to dry.

Tie dying white t shirts

I put them on the front porch to dry a little faster. After about 8 – 12 hours, take the rubber bands off and allow the shirt to fully dry.

Tie Dye Noodle Wreath

What you’ll need:

  • Tie Die Shirt, cut into strips
  • Pool Noodle
  • Hot glue gun

How to make a tie dye noodle wreath

Cut the T shirt into lengthwise strips. To assemble the noodle as a wreath, just pull both ends together and tape together with heavy duty packaging tape.

Start assembling the wreath by placing the end of one strip and hot gluing it to the back. Start wrapping the wreath diagonally and when the strip ends, make sure it ends on the rear of the wreath so it does not show. If there is extra inches, cut them off then hot glue the end.

Repeat this process until the wreath is fully covered.

Summer Tie Dye Wreath ~ an easy and fun project for all ages!

Tips for tie-dying:

  • Tie dye projects are perfect for plain white t shirts or even t-shirts you have lying around that could use a makeover!
  • White cotton is the best and if you plan on wearing it as a shirt, be sure to wash and dry it before starting your project.
  • Be sure to use the gloves or you’ll get pretty tie dye hands like these.

Check out more projects:

Tie Dye Summer Wreath



How to Geocache With Kids (an easy guide to getting started to Geocaching at home or on a road trip).Geocaching Intro - screenshot

Before our road trip a few weeks ago, I looked into starting Geocaching. I had heard of it, seen people do it but hadn’t participated in this activity. Since we have always been an outdoor family, it sounded perfect for us. I checked out Geocaching.com and found a wealth of information.

What is Geocaching and what exactly is a Geocache? Simply put, it’s like a treasure hunt. You are given coordinates and maybe even some clues to find it. Geocaching is great for anytime whether you are staying at home or on a road trip. We use the app whenever we have some down time and always seem to find caches close to where we are! When you find the Geocache, there is always at the very least a log inside. Log the date and your name or “team” name and put the cache back exactly where you find it. The fun caches include little trinkets for kids to trade. When Geocaching you also may find a “travel bug” which is a trackable tag that you take from one cache and place it in another so it can “travel”.

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Planning to Geocache while on a road trip is always fun. You can map them out before hand or look at your app as you go. On our recent road trip to California, we looked for Geocaches every time we stopped. It makes bathroom breaks that much more exciting! You can also do it from home, in our neighborhood alone there are at least 6!

What you’ll need:

GPS System or Geocaching app (found here)
Pen
Small little trinkets (see what we have, below)

Here’s the how to on Geocaching With Kids:

  • Open the app to find Geocaches near you.
  • Change your view on the map to “satellite”, this will give you a more accurate view of where to look for it.
  • Click on the closest location and see the description.
  • This is where you will see what it is and any description of what to look for.
  • Look high, low and maybe even buried under some rocks! The Geocaches are meant to be hidden so it may take you a few minutes to find it.
  • Log if you found it or not! Use a printable log (like the one below) and the app to track if you found the Geocache or not.

Want to start a Geocache? Check out these Geocache items on Amazon.com

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We found this one in Quartszite along the I-10, if you go it’s an easy find! Well, notice the camouflage doesn’t make it immediately noticeable but that’s part of the adventure!

Why Geocache?

  • It’s a FUN family activity!
  • It’s FREE! (unless you opt to pay the premium fee).
  • It allows kids to learn navigation skills.

Geocaches can be anything from a small container to a large box to a fake looking log. The picture below shares an Easter Egg that we found inside a light post!

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We keep a Geocache kit in the car with a pen and trinkets to trade. The trinkets are small enough to be traded in the smaller Geocaches as well as the bigger ones.

Geocache trinkets for kids to trade

Going on a road trip? Print this sheet out and Geocache along the way!

Geocache printable journal for kids. Print multiple pages to start a scrapbook of your geocaching adventures!

Get the printable Geocache Journal here: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B_4LRatnb7Umd3c3czdRVDZTYjA/edit 

Before you get started, what you should know:

  • Geocaching.com and the app are free. There is a premium fee for the app along with a premium membership fee.
  • The app on the phone works perfectly unless you may be out of “cell range”. Try the premium app fee to save an offline list.
  • If you are struggling to find a Geocache, check the hints in the app as well as the activity to see if there are any clues to help!
  • Beware of Muggles ~ people who are not familiar with the Geocaching world who may see you and get concerned or remove the Geocache.
  • The app is great however because your location is determined off of cell towers, you could be within 30 feet of the GPS location. I think the app is a great way to get started but as you continue, you may want to invest in an actual GPS system so you can start tracking off of coordinates directly.

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Looking for more fun things to do this Summer? Check out the Summer  Survival Series hosted by The Joys of Boys!

How to Purchase A Vehicle Cash From A Private Owner

I shared that we recently purchased a truck, cash. I wanted to share the journey we went though because in fact, it was not as easy as we thought. It all started a few years ago when I had a minivan with a car payment attached. A hail storm came through, took my vehicle out in a sense so the insurance paid it off. I was left wondering, do I purchase another vehicle or is there another option. My dad had a Jeep he wasn’t using so I opted to get out of payments for a while and drove the Jeep. My plan was to save money and eventually purchase a vehicle without a payment.

Fast forward a few years and we started saving for a car. I think the hardest thing for me was being diligent with the money we were saving. I drove a vehicle that was a little beat up but I didn’t have payments and it got me to where I needed to go. So by saving money by getting rid of a car payment and driving a vehicle without a payment, allowed us to save and buy a nicer vehicle. We finally were ready to take the plunge into buying another vehicle after saving the most recent tax return and combining it with other funds saved. As you can see above, we purchased a Chevy Avalanche as it was a perfect fit for our family.

A big shoutout goes to my brother. I actually wouldn’t have been able to get through the ordeal without him as he educated me on what to do and went with me to look at the vehicle. I was ready to give up on this guy we purchased from because I felt like it was a repeated run around from him but I learned how to navigate the situation.

How to purchase a vehicle with cash from a private owner (without getting ripped off):

  • Research your vehicle –  Find out which vehicle is best for you and find out any possible issues before purchasing a car.
    • We utilized these sites
      • http://www.kbb.com/ This site will let you know what the value is, what others are selling for in your area, the specs etc. This site also had a customer review tab. See what real people think about that vehicle before you purchase it.
      • http://www.fueleconomy.gov/ Find out what that vehicle gets in gas milage.
      • servicearizona.com Find out if the vehicle has a lien on it by purchasing  a lien motor vehicle check. This site is AZ specific so if you are not in Arizona, look for your state’s department of vehicles site.
      • Carfax.com This is an investment you need to make when purchasing a vehicle that has been pre-owned. This will allow you to check for any accidents, any services reported, vehicle sales etc. Basically it’s a fact checker. If you invest, purchase the unlimited license plate check. Download the app so you can check license plates & VIN #’s on the go.
  • Go to the DMV or 3rd Party to finish the transaction. The DMV is the only one who can clear that title to be sold and make sure there is nothing else wrong with it.
  • Questions to ask a seller before meeting with them:
    • When is the last time the car had maintenance? Do you have the paperwork?
      • This includes tires, oil changes etc.
    • Is the title open and notarized for sale? Are there any liens on the vehicle?
      • This is different than a clear title. What this means is there is no liens on it and they have gone to the DMV to open the title to allow it to be sold.
  • Inspecting the vehicle:
    • I would say one of the best things to do is bring someone who is knowledgable when you go to look at it. Have them do a thorough inspection and to take it on a test drive to see if anything appears to be wrong.

Red Flags:

  • Do NOT purchase a vehicle where they promise to pay the lien after you purchase it.
  • Check for recent work completed on a vehicle such as bondo or paint jobs.
  • Unwilling to meet at a DVM or third party service center.
  • Check engine or other warning lights are on. Even if they promise they took it in and said that XYZ was wrong, do not purchase a vehicle with a warning light on unless you are able to get a diagnostic.

How to negotiate a better price:

  • Before contacting the seller, have your highest price in mind that you wold pay for that vehicle.
  • Always let the seller start with their price.
  • Ask if they are firm on the price but don’t ask for a new amount just yet.
  • After inspecting the vehicle, look for any flaws that may help you negotiate a better price.
  • Start with a lower offer. Don’t start with the price you will pay, go lower and look for their reaction to gauge where they may be willing to go.
  • Take their price and your offer to find a price in the middle.

Other tips:

  • Best time to buy a car? Before the holidays when people are looking for extra cash or are looking to upgrade their vehicles to a newer model.
  • Take your time. Unless you are in an immediate need for a car, take your time to research them and to find the vehicle that best fits your family.
  • Have money saved up for maintenance. Consider having at least $1000 ready to be spent on any maintenance that needs to be done. We had to buy 2 new tires and a battery just within the first week of buying this truck.
  • Calculate how much the car will cost per month by calculating your gas mileage and insurance.
  • Educate yourself on the car you are about to purchase. What normally goes out on them for maintenance? Do you have someone to work on that vehicle if needed?

Saving $$

  • Have a plan. Put money towards your car fund each month with a desired goal amount/date.

There it is, how we purchased our new to us truck (with cash) from a private owner. I didn’t talk a lot about how we saved enough money because it was pretty simple. We just spent within our means and saved what we could so anyone could do it!

How To Buy a Car with Cash & How to Avoid Scams and Lemons

Having a Summer get together? Cool off with this delicious White Summer Sangria recipe. Looking for a red sangria? Check out my recipe here: http://cleverpinkpirate.com/2012/05/28/summersangriarecipe/

White Summer Sangria Recipe

What I like about sangria is that you can pretty much add whatever Summer fruits you have on hand and of course it’s a delicious drink to cool off with.

White Summer Sangria Recipe (Adult Only Version):

White Summer Sangria Recipe

  • 1/2 bottle of white wine (I like Moscato for it’s sweetness)
  • 4 cups of Sprite
  • 1 cup of white grape juice
  • Sliced lemons, limes and berries of your choice

Serve over ice! Here’s a tip, if you are looking at what time of wine to get, the cheaper wines work perfect for this. Walmart has a $3 bottle of wine that is a great fit for Sangria recipes!

White Summer Sangria Recipe

Looking for a kid friendly version? Take 4 cups of Sprite, 4 cups of white grape juice and add the fruit!

White Summer Sangria Recipe

White Summer Sangria Recipe (Kid Friendly recipe too)

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