Pinterest has gotten HUGE.  I remember when it first started out.  No one was quite sure what it was because it was this secret, members only, invite only platform.  So when a friend invited me to join, I accepted the invitation and excitedly started surfing around.  I’m not quite sure what I thought or what I expected at the time, but my love affair with Pinterest has grown exponentially since our initial encounter.
In July of 2013, Semiocast reported that there were over 70 million pinners on Pinterest, and that number was growing exponentially.  Digital Marketing Ramblings reported that there are over 30 billion Pinterest pins currently active on Pinterest.  So what’s my point?
I pin at least 2-3 pins that I would like to try every day.  But who the heck has the time to DO all of these things that we look at and imagine would be AMAZEBALLS in our own homes?
I always wished that at the bottom of each pin there was some sort of disclaimer.  Something that said, “Tried this, and it took 19 hours, don’t know how this girl got it done in 30 minutes and it looked perfect,” or “Don’t believe the hype, this monkey bread comes out tasting like a pile of horse manure,” or even, “She said ‘DIY for $75’ but it really cost $147 after I bought all of the pieces to fix the mess ups!” Then maybe I wouldn’t waste so much time trying things out on my family just for my patient husband to exclaim, “Why can’t you just make some chicken cutlets?!”
This new Pinterest blog series will hopefully help you all with this same gripe.  I’m going to be tackling Pinterest, 6 pins at a time, and reporting back to you each Sunday.  And I encourage your input and opinions!  If I try a pin and have a different opinion than you did on that same pin, let me know in the comments!  If there is a pin that you are dying to try but just don’t have the time, send it to me and I’ll see if I can give it a go.  My goal is to help mommies like you and I feel less overwhelmed and less insufficient by this amazing digital medium.
And without further ado, here are our first 6 Pinterest pins!
1.  Hug Machine by Scott Campbell.  I first learned about Hug Machine when it popped up on my Pinterest feed as a Barnes and Noble pin. I headed right over to our town library and requested a copy. The girls loved it SO MUCH that when our borrowing time was up, I bought Jane and Emma their very own copy on Amazon. We read it almost every night, and the girls even know parts of the story and can repeat them as we read, or even read it all by themselves!  A lot of times when products pop up on Pinterest, I research them extensively before I purchase, and this was no exception.
2.  10 Ways to Save on Your Heat Bill.  I always think of these as BS, but since we’ve been really struggling with keeping our home warm this winter, I decided to give it a shot.  The one part that stuck out to me the most was the part about the oven vent, because I ALWAYS turn on the vent over our stove from the beginning to the end of my cooking.  So last night, I turned it on just long enough to suck up any splashy-fumey stuff, and then I turned it off.  Not only did our house smell delicious (I made shrimp scampi, yum), but the stove warmed our house up!  Winner, winner, shrimpy dinner!  We are also saving our rainy day pennies for this programmable thermostat, which I would like to have installed before next winter! Overall I thought this pin was super helpful.
3.  Chicken Fajitas.  We LOVE fajitas.  Well, Hershey loves burritos (no beans, extra cheese, which I would argue takes all of the Mexican out of the burrito, but, let’s let him think he’s eating “ethnic food”), but fajitas lend themselves well to burritos because then all I have to do is make a pot of rice on the side and toss in some cheese.  So when I came across this recipe for chicken fajitas, I was so excited.  My biggest issue is that I never read through the recipe before I go into the kitchen to make it, so I didn’t realize ahead of time that I would need to let the chicken marinate for an hour.  That being said, I like that the chicken has to marinate for an hour, because that meant that I could spend some time
cleaning up after spending time with my girls.  Here are some pics of how it all turned out:
Chicken Fajitas
I use plain Chobani yogurt as sour cream and a tiny bit of salsa just to give it a little bit of extra kick.  We also use whole wheat tortillas.  It was fairly quick and easy, and I swear I would have licked the marinade out of the bowl if I didn’t have a tiny bit of self control.
4.  7 Tips to Organizing with a Messy Family.  So I clicked on this one and saved it because, well, I usually like the things that Sarah Titus has to say.  And I thought that the girl in the Pinterest image looked JUST LIKE ME most days.  This time, I was not happy.  The whole post is about turning to the Lord for answers to your questions and guidance in just accepting that your spouse is messy and taking things away from the kids when they don’t cooperate with your cleanliness expectations.  I felt like I had just gone to church.  If you’re into that kind of thing — great.  I, however, am not.  I wanted to know some tried and true tips on how to live a more organized life when your twin tornadoes are tearing the house apart and your husband is working 12 hour days and you are struggling to stay sane in your little OCD world.  Guess I’ll have to find a different pin for that…
5.  25 Fun Indoor Activities for Toddlers. This post has 25 activity suggestions for your little ones, but they are all links to other pages.  So you go to the writer’s page, and then from there you have to go to 25 different pages to find the set up for the activities.  Most of these are too sophisticated for my 20 month olds, but we do have a bowling set that the girls like, and we do bubbles inside all of the time, which keeps them occupied for about 37 seconds.  We also have done the indoor water play, which is fun but messy.  It takes more time to set it up and CLEAN it up than it actually keeps them occupied.  I actually liked this site, which one of the links brought me to, better than the original link.  I think I’ll just pin that one…
6.  How to Clean Your Humidifier.  So I’ve been just following the directions that go along with the humidifiers forever, but I’m so happy that I found this pin because with the vinegar being diluted, I never felt like it was getting totally clean.  I used bleach (I don’t have peroxide in the house — I know, Mom!), but I think I’ll use peroxide next time because I hate the smell of bleach.  Otherwise, this was easier and I feel like our humidifiers are much cleaner overall.
I hope that this series is helpful to you!  Please let me know if you try any of these pins out, and how you like them!  Also let me know if there is anything you would like me to try in the future!
Oh, and as we await Winter Storm Juno, here are some pics of how we made out after Winter Storm Iona.
Front door Snow
Winter WonderlandWoah SnowReady for SnowPretty SnowJane Smile SnowFun SnowHappy Snow
 Stay safe and warm out there this week everyone!