Our Daughter Got Married!!!

We have a new addition to our family! Our daughter, Elisabeth, got married and we have a new son-in-law, Brandon, and are so blessed to have such an awesome addition to our family. Now if you follow us on Facebook and Instagram you would have seen all the updates as they happened, a few months ago. I am behind on posting to the blog because we have been busy with many projects, along with some blog issues, and will be updating you hopefully soon.

This is a picture of our entire family minus our eight grandchildren. This includes our two wonderful son-in-laws and our beautiful daughter-in-law.


Thanksgiving Day!

Sorry, This is posting so late. I have been having problems with our website for weeks now and my domain name. It didn’t renew as I thought it did and a company bought it. I am in a long process to try and buy it back. Long Story! For now I have to use Parentsofadozen.blogspot.com. I hope I am able to buy it back, because right now all of my links go to .com, which is really messing up every post and all of my tabs. Sorry for the inconvenience! I thought I would post this anyway. Better late than never!

We have a lot to be thankful for; our family, friends, food, house, and a job. We have been very blessed through the years especially with all of our children. We feel that each and every one of them have been the the biggest blessing. We could not imagine what life would be like without them. They have been very good to us as well.

We had a small gathering for Thanksgiving. Our oldest daughter and her family were on vacation for the week and our oldest son and his family were at the in-laws house for Thanksgiving. So the day just wasn’t the same. below are some pictures from the day.


New You for the New Year! Special!

Get a head start on a healthier 2014 with this exciting new offer and be rewarded with $100 of FREE Shaklee product!

Our daughter Elisabeth, was always on the chubby side when she was young and she struggled with her weight for years as she realized she was heavier than most of the family and her friends. She had tried several diets and never had good results that lasted until almost three years ago when she used the Shaklee 180 products. She lost 40 pound and then has been able to keep it off.

This quite possibly could be the last weight-loss program you'll ever need!

This is our daughter!


Add Charm to the Back of a House

Three years ago we had a storm that came through our neighborhood and our trampoline blew into our house and damaged the aluminum siding, broke a window and ripped some screens. You could see how we rescreened the damaged screens here. Instead of replacing all the siding we choose to add an overhang, lights and shutters. We had the work done last fall and I am finally posting about it. I really like the new look and the benefit of having the overhang to block some rain. By having the break in the siding with the overhang we were able to replace sections of the siding and not have to replace all of it.

Add Charm to the back of the house with an Overhang and Shutters

Throwing a Party Country Style! Part 3: Food

Do you like to have themed parties? We have been to a few, had an awesome time, and decided to throw a Country Party for our daughter’s 16th birthday. Food is always a big part of our most parties and we wanted to stay with the theme of the party and serve what we thought of as good country style food.

To start with we had peanuts and popcorn as snacks to munch on. They were in cute containers everywhere for convenience and it added to the decor.

Food for a Country Party!

Corn Dipping: How to Boil, Butter, and Eat Corn on the Cob!

We love to have corn on the cob this time of the year. It is so fresh and tasty. This year the corn crops were good, so we have been able to buy the corn for 10 for a dollar. What a deal! It is a great side to serve at family cookouts and get togethers. The Corn Dipping is fun for everyone. (video below)

Corn Dipping

Earning Extra Income the Fun Way!

A couple of weeks ago we went to our Shaklee global conference in Nashville, Tennessee and boy was it great.  Our group was well represented as we had over 20 people in attendance.


One member of our group, our daughter, Elisabeth, from Beauty Blondie, was even chosen as a winner of the healthy competition.  Not only did she loose 40 pounds on Shaklee’s 180 Weight Management Program she is living a healthier life.


Room Switches: Our two year old gets her own room

This week we started to set up our daughter, Mary’s bedroom. She has been in our room since she was born,  and now that our daughter, Elisabeth, is getting married in just THREE WEEKS (I can't believe it is already here!), we are going to be moving just about all the children into new rooms. Yes, all the other children are jealous that she gets her own room. There are 10 children in the house, we have six bedrooms, and never used the basement bedroom before, other than as a gest room and toy room. We don’t like having our children in the basement because we have done that at our old house and we rarely saw the children that were down there. We have our own room, finally! Our daughter is moving out when she gets married, our 26 old son was moved down to the basement bedroom, the three younger boys, 12, 9, and 6, are moving to the large bonus room, the 19 and 17 year old boys share a room and the 16 and 14 year old girls are going to share a room. So where do you put the 2 year old? By herself! Who else wants to share a room with a two year old that takes naps and goes to bed early most of the time.

This room was our almost 26 year old son’s room. I should have taken a picture of it before I moved him to the bedroom in the basement.  You could see his new room farther down.

In this room I am going to paint the walls, bed, & mirror, and pick bedding, curtains & new wall décor. (All of the black was from my son’s room.) I just thought I would share some pictures along the way.


Throwing a Party, Country Style! Part 2

Earlier this month we threw a Birthday Party/Country Hoedown for our 16 year old, who just loves country music and décor. You can see our décor for the party HERE. Everyone had so much fun and we had something for everyone to do. We also had country music playing all day and night.

There were plenty of games; Croquet and Bocce ball.

Throwing a party, country style! All kinds of activities!

Throwing a Party, Country Style!

We had a surprise birthday party for our 16 year old daughter, done country style! We decorated for a country Shin Dig and used furniture and décor that we had around the house and have collected the last couple of months. We also rented straw bales and even had everyone dress in country attire. As I was adding pictures to show you and I realized it was going to be way too long so I decided to split this into three posts. Today I am going to show you our décor.

Great ideas for having a country party!

FREE Shaklee Membership!

We have been using Shaklee products now for 15 years and we have never been healthier. We want to share a special where you could join for FREE. It is a FREE Shaklee Membership with the purchase of one of the most popular products, the Vitalizer.  We take the this daily and we know that we are putting the best into our bodies and we feel great. The membership fee is always waived with the purchase of the Vitalizer and there are so many benefits to becoming a member….

Healthy Nutrition

Spray Painting to Refresh and Add Color

Things have been very hectic around here lately. I thought the summer would give me more time to post with the school being done, but as you could tell that is not happening. (If you have been around here for a while you know that I home school several of my children.) I have been trying to work on projects, but there is always something going on around here which makes it very hard to finish the projects we have started. Here is one of the simple projects I did, spray painting our watering can and sprinklers to refresh and add color.Spray painting watering can and sprinklers to add color and to refresh

How to Paint Your Broom to Match Your Décor!

Two years ago we did some renovations/remodeling to our main floor and we went very neutral with our paint choices and décor. I like to change up our décor and add color with the different seasons and holidays. In the past when I had certain bold colors for our walls and curtains (burgundies/pinks and forest green, don’t laugh.) I really didn’t like to put out pumpkins in the fall, or spring decorations because they really did not match our house. At Christmas I never wanted a touch of red it had to be burgundy.  I really like having everything very neutral so I could make color changes with the change of seasons and holidays. For the spring and summer I  have been adding the color green to our décor. So with a few pillows, accessories, and a little spray paint I am able to refresh the kitchen and family room. Well, I spray painted my broom! I am going to tell you how and why I did this.

How to paint your broom to match your decor.

Pottery Barn Inspired Wine Bottle Centerpiece!

I have been changing things up in our house and have been meaning to post about them. I have all kinds of pictures and have started several post but I get in the middle of one post and never finish it. While I write this one I realize I never wrote my follow up post on our new couches and our Craig's List table and chair finds. I will get to those soon, but for now I wanted to show you our new Pottery Barn inspired centerpiece.


I really love the Pottery Barn store, but …

Our Daughter-in-Law is Being Featured in 5 Magazines

Our daughter-in-law, Ann Marie Healsey, is being featured right now in 5 magazines for her Mom Cave Makeover! She has a very creative blog that you are sure to enjoy.
White House Black Shutters Room Make over that is in 5 Magazines

Carrabba's Chicken Bryan

Today I am going to share with you an awesome recipe. If I saw this recipe I might not have ever made it, but after having it on my sisters weekend, I am definitely going to be making this. I can’t believe I haven’t made it yet. There is so much flavor, very easy to make and serve.

Carrabba's Chicken Bryan

DIY Headboard!

Kristen from Yellow Bliss Road has an awesome blog with DIY, recipes, printable and more. I really like and thought you would enjoy seeing how she made this headboard. She explains how to make this gorgeous headboard in a few easy steps here.

Kristen is also doing another giveaway for us. She is doing her spring cleaning with the Get Clean Starter Kit. She has several great pictures showing how she… cleaned and told what she liked about the products.

Blue Bathroom Makeover

The house I grew up in had two and a half baths all of which where what we called The Pink Bathroom, The Yellow Bathroom and The Blue Bathroom.  We helped renovate my parent’s house while hubby was out of work, and we were able to do just about all of it. Today we are gong to show you how we transformed The Blue Bathroom into this with a very limited budget.

IMG_1101 (2)

This is what the picture looked like before we did anything.

Side Gathered Shirt from a Men's Shirt Refashioned and a Giveaway!

You have to see this awesome t-shirt refashioned. Mandy from Sugar Bee Crafts did wonders with this shirt. She has a tutorial showing how easy it was to make. She has all kinds of crafts and tutorials on her blog.                                                                                                        
Mandy is also hosting an other giveaway for us …

How to Clean Stainless Steel

We are hosting two more giveaways for the Get Clean Starter Kit. These kits gives you everything you need to clean your house and get a REAL CLEAN, without the toxins other so called “cleaners” have.
The first giveaway is over at Kellie’s blog, Nest of Posies.  She shows how to clean stainless steel appliances.
She is super sweet and her blog has lots of …

Table Redo & Review and Giveaway!

Ashley from Cherished Bliss is doing a review & giveaway for us. She has an awesome blog with all kinds diy, crafts, crochet, sewing and more. Go to her blog to enter to win a Get Clean Starter Kit. And then you need to see how she made over this…
Shaklee-Giveaway cherished bliss

Organizing Clothes in Drawers

I have a quick little tip I have been doing for years and I wanted to share with you. I have so many ideas I do that help us stay organized and I thought they might help others also.

I put all the clothes…

Organizing Clothes

Another Shaklee Get Clean Review & Giveaway and Stenciled Rug!

Have we ever told you how much we like the Shaklee products? lol! We started using them 14 years ago and have been hooked ever since. They are non-toxic, work extremely well and safe for our whole family. We are giving away another Get Clean Starter Kit over at Ashley’s blog DIY On the Cheap. She reviewed the Kit for us and shows some before and after pictures.

Shaklee Get Clean Giveaway 2 DYI on the Cheap

She has an awesome blog that has all kinds of creative ways to…

How to Paint a Perfect Edge Every Time!

I am painting again! Our bedroom needed to be updated, and paint is one of the easiest and least expensive ways to change a room or should I say makes the biggest impact. It is not always easy.
Do you paint?
Do you want to?
I have been painting for 30 years. We have owned and painted four houses we lived in (multiple times), three we flipped, two we renovated and helped others paint. I am always learning new tricks, and would like to share with you some tips I have learned along way.
One of the hardest parts of painting is getting a straight edge to give it that professional look.
When I started to paint I used painters tape all the time. It makes a nice straight edge, but it definitely has its disadvantages.
  1. It takes a lot longer to prepare to paint.
  2. It costs more than if you didn’t have to use it.
  3. The paint sometimes gets under the tape. Then you have to repaint where the paint leaked.
  4. If you don’t take the tape off while the paint is still wet, it is harder to remove.
I learned how to paint free hand and I do a very good job at it, but I found a way that gives me a perfect edge every time and is really fast and easy.
Look how nice the edges look!
How to paint the perfect edge every  tme!
Every edge is perfect! Read More to find out how to get this edge…

Shaklee Get Clean Starter Kit Giveaway and An Upcycled Headboard!

I am so excited to let you know I am about to kick off a hand full of giveaways to celebrate earth day. I will be giving away the Get Clean Starter Kit at a few select blogs. You get everything shown in this picture.
All the products are so concentrated you only need a little bit and you would have to buy over $3,400…

How to Help Your Young Athletes Deal with Failure!

Last Sunday I spent the day coaching 3 baseball games for our sons U11  (Under 11) baseball team. We went 1-2 on the day but the kids played really well for the first time getting outside. It has been so cold and rainy that we haven’t been able to practice outside on a baseball field this spring. I’ll keep you posted as the season goes along.

Sport Sunday Button

How Can You Help Your Young Athletes Deal with Failure?

10 Ways to use Deli Meat Ends!

One of the ways we save money is by looking for sales on food and making meals with what we have in the house. One of the things I like to do is when I go to the grocery store is to check if they sell meat ends. That is the ends of the meat they sell in the deli section. There are several smaller markets that I know of that sell the meat ends for much cheaper than the regular price. Unfortunately none of these stores are close by. So when I am able to stop at the market, I will usually check to see if they have any meat ends.


Parents of a Dozen Family Update

It has been awhile since we did a family update. Here are some more current pictures of our children and us.


We live in a suburb of Chicago, and we enjoy having the four seasons.

5 Important Tips for a Perfect Practice for Today’s Young Athlete

Practice is an essential ingredient for any successful team. But not just any kind of practice, but productive practices with everyone on the team working hard and concentrating on doing things correctly, from coaches, to players, to parents. Remember, practice does not make perfect, practice makes actions permanent. Only perfect practices makes perfect.


It has been proven that for every time you do something wrong or incorrect, you have to do it right seventeen (17) times to get your brain oriented to doing it right or correctly.

With that said, here are 5 guidelines for players (and parents) to follow:

Spring Cleaning Safely with Little Helpers

It’s that time of the year again when I get in the mood to thoroughly go through and clean out every section of the


house.I have a garage sale to help get rid of things we no longer need or want. I could just donate everything, but why not make some money and then donate what is left over. It is usually easier to get rid of something if you know you are going to get some money for it.

I like to have a CLEAN house. The family has their daily and weekly…

Sports Sunday:Youth Workout for Shoulders and Arms

Welcome to Sports Sunday! My name is Doug Heasley and I’m going to post informative, educational, and fun material which will help you and your children become a better coach and better athletes . I’ve been fortunate enough to learn a lot of skills, tips, and techniques from some great instructors throughout my life. Since my wife is not the biggest sports fan, actually she is not a sports fan at all, I feel compelled to share my love and knowledge of sports with all of you. I look forward to you joining me on my “Sports Sunday” journey.


Sport Sunday Button

I have played sports my entire life and consider myself a pretty good athlete.

Our St. Patrick’s Day Dinner Tradition

How was your weekend? What did you do for St. Patrick’s Day? Do you have a special meal you make for St. Patrick’s Day? We do! Ever since I was little we have ALWAYS had corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes. It is kind of like having turkey for Thanksgiving and ham for Easter, it is just what we do and the children always look forward to it. It is the only time of the year we have corned beef. Read on to see how much we make and other traditions we have.

An Awesome Time in Texas with my Sisters!

Last week I spent 5 days at my sister’s house in Houston with all 8 of my sisters and 1 sister-in-law. We all missed our other two sister-in-laws. (Yes, my parents were parents of a dozen also.) Wow, what a week! We all took time out of our busy schedules to fly out of state to get together. Could you tell which one is the sister-in-law and me?

Our Little Cosmetologist!

We can’t believe our little girl is going to be two years old this month. She is such a little blessing and joy to have around. Here is a little video of her wanting to be like her mom and sisters. She always wants to be doing what everyone else is doing.

Tips to Refinancing Your Home!

Like us on Facebook now!
If this is in your email click on the title to see the whole post.

Sometimes, refinancing your mortgage can really save you money. You may be able to pay less interest, lower your monthly payment, or convert from a 30-year loan to a 15-year loan (and build your equity faster!). But do your research and make sure that refinancing is right for you.

Tips to refinancing your home and saving money

Mortgage rates are at record lows and after the fed's decision to buy billions in home loans, it has continued to ease costs for home owners and buyers.

A Visit to the Shedd Aquarium!


Recently we took our three younger boys to the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. It was a discount day. For us it is a free day because we are residents of Illinois. It does not include some of the exhibits, but we spent a couple of hours there and saw plenty. If you go on one of their discount days,

When do you Change your Furnace Filter?

Like us on Facebook now!

When to change your air furnace filter

When was the last time you changed your air filter on your furnace? Changing the filter is really important. Your furnace and air conditioner will run better and more efficiently if you change the filter

Weight Loss Challenge!

Are you ready to lose fat this year and keep it off?

We are looking for 20 people who want to drop 10 lbs. in January. Will it be YOU???

We tell you exactly what to eat & show you how to exercise for 90 days


We show you how to keep it off for another 90 days!

These are our daughters, Elisabeth and Bonnie.

We (Doug and Sharon) are going to do the challenge also. Will you join us?