21.1.18

20+ Mostly Marvel Superhero Valentines - Free Printables!

by Robin




It's become a bit of a tradition for us to pull together a roundup of fun, free, printable Valentines for the kids to choose from. Last year we curated a list of Star Wars Valentines - and before that a bunch of non-branded, fun and funny Valentines.  


This year the choice was obvious: Marvel.  We have become huge fans of Marvel movies.  Even me!  I LOVED the Ragnarok movie.  Have you seen it?  So much fun - even for someone normally pretty neutral about Superhero movies (also me). 


And my kids each have their own favourite Marvel superhero.


My 13-year-old daughter was Thor for Halloween.  She looked great - I wish we had a good photo to share.  She made some cardboard armour and had two Mjolnir's: a flat cardboard one for school (no weapons allowed) and an old wooden one of my grandpa's for trick-or-treating.  (I can't tell you how cool I feel that I know all about Mjolnir!  Although truth be told - I had to look up how to spell it for this post and admittedly I've been calling it "Meowmeow" until this moment.  Conclusion: I'm decidedly NOT cool.)


My son is a Captain American fan - for the funniest reason.  He loves how polite Captain America is. 😂  And they both prefer their friends to not swear thank-you-very-much.  That's my boy for you - he's kindness personified.  (And extra funny when you know his mom curses like a sailor on shore leave when doing certain projects...)


Enough of that - here's what you came for: a great collection of free, printable Marvel superhero Valentines!


15.1.18

How to Make an Easy Reclaimed Wood Stain Finish from 3 Simple Ingredients

by Robin



The finish we did on our $30 DIY floating vanity AMAZES me.  I can't believe how beautifully it turned out - especially given the ridiculously simple materials that went into creating it.  There was not a drop of purchased stain here!  We made the finish from common, everyday things around the house. 


To my eyes, this is the perfect reclaimed wood finish.  It's got enough grey and enough brown to appear authentic.  I think I would have had to buy a dozen pots of stains to get it just right.


My goal was to reproduce the deep brown finish on the authentic boards of the second from the bottom.

In the end, we chose to keep our counter smooth - without scrapes and gouges - this is a bathroom counter after all.  Easy to clean wins.


Instead of clearing out the stain shelf at the hardware store, I grabbed a couple of ingredients from the kitchen.  I'll bet you have them in yours, too.  I did some countertop chemistry - and Voila - a most lovely rich brown with just enough grey.  


I estimate the oxidizing stain cost about $0.75 to make.  Seriously.  And we already had the oil topcoat from our kitchen makeover - though it's pretty inexpensive to purchase a fresh jug.


So, enough preamble!  Here's how to DIY your own reclaimed looking wood stain from simple, low cost, household ingredients...


30.12.17

Our Top Posts 2017: Family Fun, Food and DIY - on a Budget!




How would you rate 2017?  


Ours was memorable for our personal lows - and later highs. We won't ever forget the stress of moving Robin's mom to a home or the grief of losing Ed's dad.  Those two experiences wiped us out emotionally.  But on the other side of both of those trials have been new beginnings with light and hope and we are thankful.


Things on this here little blog have never been better!  At the start of 2017 Robin set the intention of working more consistently here.  As a result, our blog has grown and we've shared some really great ideas.  We've met some really great people too.


It's been such a good year - we're making some even bigger changes - more details soon!  (We're going to chat about it with our email subscribers first - so watch your inbox.)


Our favourite blog moment of the last year was when our 13-year-old daughter Charlotte joined us as our Baking Contributor She's shared three great recipes so far and she has more to come.  It's so much fun to share our Frugal Family Times experience with her.  (When our son is a teen we will see if he's interested in participating too - we think 13 is a great age for him to make a choice about whether he'd like to share online with us.)



Thank-you so much for joining us here!

 We know your time is valuable and we're thankful you choose to spend some of it here with us.  We hope our posts give you ideas to spend your money and time the best way possible - and entertain you at the same time.  
Without your visits and comments, we would have given this up a long time ago - so thanks for your encouragement! 

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20+ Mostly Marvel Superhero Valentines - Free Printables!