Wednesday, October 17, 2012

little confession

I consider myself a DIYer. I feel a certain feeling of accomplishment and pride when I enhance my house with little projects to show my personality. I have been very stunted in this department lately. I feel very overwhelmed on my own trying to accomplish it all. I have gone as far as completely avoiding all my projects, maybe they will all do it themselves!  Well I have a nasty confession

I just hired someone to finish all the projects around the house I started and never finished before Soldier boy left. I feel a little guilty.

Somehow it has liberated me!
 Made me want to tackle the smaller projects I want to do with the kids, projects to decorate for the holidays. Installing crown molding, putting up baton board and finishing the master bath by myself, just it's a project I could comprehend. I am excited to see how it all turns out! Less than 200 days until we have to pack up and get out of here. I need to get the house in tip top order before Soldier boy comes back and we put the house up on the market. Now those project holding me back are someone else's job. I can spend the evening molding clay, painting burlap, and making jewelry with the kids, without feeling guilty that I should be doing this or that- someone else is doing it for me!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Our Deployment Counter

It's that time again! We kissed our favorite soldier boy goodbye for a while.

 We had a pretty decent first week. I was a bit surprised! BUT then day one of week two hit. The kids had their first bad day! The older two got in trouble at school and the other two were just ornery. I needed something to change their attitudes and help them cope.

I had seen many different count down calendars that I thought we could do. My problem with count down calendars are I lose track, weeks/days/months it works for a time or two but I would be counting every time the remaining chain, marble, Hershey Kisses. It would be overwhelming for me. Not to mention the initial time put into it I just didn't have the energy. They focus on a future date which in the army is never certain!

I really wanted something exciting, and uplifting. I'd done enough yelling, I wanted something to build them up, to have fun. Something my kids couldn't fight over. Something everyone was involved in. As I made my kids clean there rooms while I made dinner I was inspired. I knew just the thing for us.

We normally have a family night on Mondays. Our soldier left on a Monday. So we had our first family celebration party! The kids loved it! We celebrated surviving a week without daddy. I shared my coveted nine months supply of brownies my soldier boy left me with (SERIOUSLY BEST ANNIVERSARY PRESENT EVER!). We had ice cream and we talked about the things we did and wanted to do the following week.

A friend of mine had pinned journaling cards on Pinterest. I printed a few off and we wrote down the fun things we did that we wanted to share with daddy, each person got to add what they remembered. Later I had him email me a brief rundown of what he did and wrote it on the back. Our goal is to write one card every Monday and our soldier boy will contribute when he has internet access. When we are all done this deployment we will show daddy how we celebrated each week and then read thru our ups and downs. A way to celebrate our successes and acknowledge our failures and rough times.

My kids love it! They plan the meal for the following week's party at the end of our family celebration, they discuss all week long how they want to celebrate. I got off easy this week with Hamburgers and fries with ice cream as a treat. I am sure their requests will get more elaborate as time goes on. 

Here is our deployment COUNT UP board.

I had an old board we used as a desk top, just a 1x16 piece of pine that I had wrapped in batting and muslin. We found some patriotic material in my stash and quickly rewrapped it securing the material with a staple gun. The three older kids each picked a title and they designed a simple banner for the top that we just pinned on with stick pins. I found a few links for journal cards I printed them off (from HERE).

Two weeks down! Lots more to go...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Wedding gift

Life has gotten in the way of blogging these days. That doesn't mean I haven't been adding to my project pile and occasionally finishing one! I hope next month will provide me with a little bit of time to add a few more posts, and finish a few more projects.

In February we were able to attend a friends wedding. While talking to a group of friends about what to get the sweet couple, it was pretty evident that cash was always a good option but something fun, out of the ordinary and home made was best suited for our dear friend. Something that I put a little effort into, something that was unique, something that said I thought of you.

I came across the Dating Divas site and found the absolute perfect gift to make! (click here to see original) I modified it to my liking and the available supplies. I think I will be making more of these in the future. These tins are so easy to make. I thought, this would be a great gift to give my girls at youth group when they start dating, or this summer make one with boredom blunder ideas, or maybe conversation topics for our drive to Canada this summer.
I printed their design in grey scale on my printer, on my choice of card stock so it would better match the colors I wanted to use. I also used their link to fill the box with date ideas and I added a few of my own. Originally I planned on attaching corresponding gift certificates with certain date ideas but then life happened and I never had time to collect the necessary certificates, so I just added some cash to help create some of these fun ideas, or to do as they saw fit.

They had some of the cutest center pieces. I have made photo blocks before but they didn't turn out this cute! (Of course the photo doesn't do them justice! but take my word for it they were gorgeous)
Thanks A and S for inviting us to have such a fabulous time. Lots of good memories!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Refashions part 2

First off I have decided to rename my youngest whom I refer to here as "Ape Baby". She is no longer my baby :-( She is growing up way too fast. She has graduated from the baby stage, so keeping with the same theme but a more mature name, I will refer to her as Monkey Girl from now on.
So back to my refashion...
My second refashion of the week was for Monkey girl. This skirt was super easy! Nothing too special or out of the ordinary, but we preserved "the pants" for a while longer.

Now if I can just get her to keep clothes on longer than 20minutes we will be good.
Under my Flittering butterfly's instruction she is trying to pose for the shot LOL
No that lip balm is "mine"! One of the few words she has down really good!

So My husband has a very select few pairs of pants he loves. It is hard to find him clothes, he is so picky, and believe me looks have nothing to do with it! It is all about feel.
These were one of those pair of pants. They just hit the end of their life, rips and tears everywhere.
I loved how the knee frayed. A detail I wanted to preserve in the refashion.
I wanted to use it as the bottom of the pants but her waist/thighs were too big to just use the bottom part of the jean so I had to use the fray as the waist.
Is just ripped the rest of the front all the way across then cut the back part as the grains rarely match up and end up rather uneven if I were to rip it too. I measured how long I wanted it and cut the base of my skirt.
I cut a 10" section off. 8" for length and 2"for the waste band.
I then measured her waist and subtracted the length of the front panel on the soon to be skirt.
The front section is always a bit bigger than the back section.
Her waist measured 18" and the front of the skirt measured just under 9.5".
That was the length I cut my elastic for the back of the skirt.
In hind sight I would probably shave off another 1" of the elastic as it doesn't hug her waist too well if she is wearing big girl panties (its not an issue with a diaper/pull-up, it fits perfectly).
I measured about 2" down from the top and pinned the elastic to the back panel on the outside of the material.
One pin on each side and one in the middle.
I sewed it to one side of the back, just up and down, then to the other side. Then I stretched it out and sewed straight across the top twice to secure it in place
I fold the top panel over to encase the elastic, leaving that beautiful fray exposed.
I sewed along the top as close as I could get to the edge and then again around the bottom about 1/4" up allowing my fray to happen over time.
I then took some scrap jersey I had lying around and cut a 2" wide strips of about 4' long.
I sewed a gather stitch at the top of the jersey and made the ruffles happen.
I ran my fingers across the bottom portion of my skirt pulling threads encouraging a good start to a fray.
I then pinned the ruffle to the inside of the bottom of my skirt with the pins on the outside. My machine is a few years old. I like the top portion of my stitches better than the bottom, so I made sure the nicer stitch would be on the outside. I sewed around it twice to secure it in place. One stitch only 1/4" above the other.
There you have it! A lot of words for something so simple.
I love it! No Hemming, all rough edges, and "the Jeans" see another day!
The top of the thigh naturally curves in a bit as it hits the knee making a perfect A-line shape when turned upside down!
Another UFO out of my closet.

Refashions Part 1

We spent the weekend decluttering 2/3rds of the house, we sorted our unwanteds for donation and craigslist/yardsale. With a clean house, and a more simplistic feel of things I felt inspired to create today, amazing how that is. I hurriedly cleaned a few more things to get a head of things, and got things set up for an afternoon of creating.

I have a box of UFOs (Un-Finished Objects) in my closet, much bigger than I like to admit. Everything in the box (and on top) has a specific destiny, I just need to finish them. I hope to work my way thru the entire box within the next few months while the soldier boy is away.

Today I tackled two projects, I just reached for what was on top. A skirt for each of the girls.

I started with My Flittering butterflies'. I was given this shirt but it never fit, and the color never really worked with my complexion. My oldest loved it. She asked if I/she could do something with it for her. A ten minute project!
I took the shirt and laid it out as straight as I could, then drew a line across the gathered bust area.
I sewed the layers in place, then cut the top off.
I then sewed on bias tape adding the elastic as I went (so much easier than trying to feed it in later. I simply just pin the start end in place and as a sew line everything up encasing the elastic perfectly). Done! I just had to wait for My filltering Butterfly to come home to make sure the elastic was tight enough and sewed the elastic together and closed the little inch gap. Sorry no pictures, the camera died.
She loves it!!
I might fix up the layers up front a bit more so they lay better simply by tacking them at the top, but for now its good enough for me, why be OCD about it.
I'll have to try for better picture of it. The girls were rather excited and I had some awesome dance music going in the background, they wouldn't stand still for more than a few seconds at a time, plus I was letting them dance on the table, when does a mom ever let you do that?!

This is my girls favorite music video these days. Who can stand still while listening to this?!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Children's Christmas video

My kids love kid history!! If you haven't seen it you must check them out on YouTube. My kids love these videos and can quote them word for word!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Christmas Printables

I am a bit embarrassed to admit, I have had picture frames up in the front entrance way for well over six months now waiting for pictures to be put in them. I just never got around to ordering the right pictures to fill them up. That has changed. The first thing you see as you walk into my house will no longer be six empty frames and two side ways pictures hanging on the wall!
(Sorry for the crappy pictures I keep forgetting to take pictures during the day)
I did not fill them with pictures, because ours are now outdated and I just refuse to hang the old ones, as cute as they are... I really need to get new family photos in the new year!!
But for the temporary fix this will do. I removed two of the frames which made a difference in the lay out. I love it! (I really need to start taking befor and after pictures.)

I found these printables here
1. Jones Design Company love that I could add a few scriptural Christ centered ones to the wall
2. Polkadots on Parade
3. For the life of me I can't find the link. UGH! Really thought I bookmarked them all.
4. Betty Crocker Wannabe
1. & 2. Love from home
I used the making a list and sleigh bells ones