2 moms + 2 states + 2 jobs = 2 little time

Monday, March 29, 2010

Why I Sew

I sew to avoid doing the other things I should be doing. (I'm looking at you, laundry mountain.)

I sew because it is fun.

I sew to stop thinking.

I sew to make stuff, like elastic waist pants for a newly potty trained tot.

I sew to feel a sense of accomplishment.

I sew to try something new and get out of my comfort zone.

I sew to do the same thing over again because it worked.

I sew because it's cheaper than therapy.

I sew because I can follow directions pretty well.

I sew because it makes my son proud of me.

I sew because I love it!

Why do you sew, or craft, or do the thing you do?


Friday, March 26, 2010

A little Getaway

This week is Spring Break for my oldest. Unlike last year, we did not make any big plans. (I would have loved to visit Megan again) I had decided to take a couple of days off work and spend them at home with the kids. However my other cousin Megan (yes I have 2 of them) offered to take us to Grand Bear Lodge, a hotel/lodge with an indoor water park. So although I did not spend a week in Georgia with Megan #1, I did spend 2 days in Utica with Megan #2.

Gotta take a picture with the bear.

My kiddos loved swimming and I loved not having to apply sunscreen.

Marcus -being Marcus.
Maria got a push pop,
some vampire teeth,
a sucker,
and a gumball!!
Happy Spring Break
I hope to post my easter ideas soon.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Our Weekend

This was a gorgeous weekend in Georgia with temps in the mid 70s and lots of sunshine. This is not to rub it in to my family and friends in the Midwest since I hear they got fresh snow recently. I'm just saying we are pretty lucky here and Spring will come for you, too!

We tried to take advantage of the lovely weather by going to the park and playing outside as much as possible. And by doing very little housework.

Part of our weekend tradition is to have an extra special something for Sunday morning breakfast. I love having a long and lazy morning eating something fattening while I drink coffee and Aiden and I read the newspaper together. This morning I made these delicious Cinnamon Roll Muffins.

The recipe is from Joy the Baker's blog, one of my favorite foodie sites. She has tons of recipes here, beautiful photos and she's very funny. Check it out but make sure you have some time because you may be there for a bit.

I also spent a little time this weekend thinking about Easter gifts. We'll decorate eggs and hopefully make some springtime decorations for the house and I'd like to craft a few things to put in Aiden's basket. Sure he'll get a chocolate bunny and maybe a Peep or two but I'd like to surprise him that morning with something else besides candy. Here is a short list of things I'd like to make for my little guy:

1. Drawing notebooks made from cereal boxes using this tutorial.
2. A car caddy like this one.
3. A fishing pole. (This guy's blog is amazing!)

Have you been thinking about Easter, too? What kinds of things will your kiddos get in their baskets?

Hope you all had a nice and easy weekend!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Furlough Friday

Furlough. That's a word I just learned last fall thanks to my being employed by the State of Georgia. Sadly, I'm afraid many people are learning this word or becoming too familiar with salary cuts or lay offs or unemployment. I'm thanking my stars that I still have a job, and though it really upset me at first, now I look forward to having a day off. Today the house finally got some attention, errands were tended to and I had time free for a bit of selfish sewing.

The other day Rhi mentioned she was thinking about her summer "uniform" of simple skirts and tees or tanks. Of course I thought she was brilliant and I decided to scrounge around to find a pattern or tutorial somewhere for an easy skirt. I found one at Sew, Mama, Sew! that they posted last spring. This tutorial is for an elastic waist skirt with a ruffle on bottom. I'm not much of a ruffle girl so I omitted that part and just did a (lazy) rolled hem on the serger.

This fabric is from Amy Butler's Midwest Modern collection and is one of my favorite fabric designs. I've had these in my stash for about 2 years, too scared to cut into them because they're so beautiful. This seemed like the perfect project to use these fabrics on and a great way to spend my day off.

So, what will be part of your summer uniform?


Face Lift

This poor chair really needed a face lift, didn't it? My mom bought me this chair about 3 years ago when Aiden was born. Obviously we got lots of use out of it and I'd like to keep it around longer, but that cover HAD to go. Last weekend I had a huge chunk of time to myself and decided to tackle this project.

The foot rest was finished today after I borrowed my friend's staple gun.

I'm very pleased at how it turned out but think now I should make a pillow or two for my new favorite chair.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

A Good Cause

Ashley over at http://www.lilblueboo.blogspot.com/ is auctioning off one of her dresses. It is to help her friend's daughter, who is having open brain surgery. Please go to her blog and show your support.
Thanks Rhiannon

Simple art display

I can never find enough places to display my kids art work. I love using it in projects around my home. My son recently brought home a couple on new pieces from school. I was not ready to take down what I had already displayed around the house, so I had to find another solution.
We live in the country, so most of our windows do not have curtains. When I was cleaning my kitchen windows last Sunday, it hit me. I grabbed a couple of the thingies (technical term) that you use on the back of a picture frame to attach wire and some string from the craft room.
Tadaa!!! Now I get to look at great works of art every time I do the dishes. Oh yeah I don't do the dishes.

Happy Creating

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Luck O' the... French?

O.K. so doesn't every mom stay up all hours of the night making clothes for her child to wear the next day. Of course I was up late last night making Maria a dress to wear to Miss Jenny's today.

I found this shirt with a cute little shamrock and had to use it. The only problem is the other shirt I liked said Paris across the front. I guess the dress will do double duty come Bastille Day.
Once again this is one of my favorite patterns by one of my favorite blogger's.
I love the pink buttons I put on this sleeve. They are a fun pop of color.

Now, I have to throw in a couple of fun pics. We are finally having some spring like weather, which means what? Spring like pictures of course!! I even got to go for a run -yeah. It feels good to stretch out these rusty legs.

Maria enjoying some tunes while the boys play some football. Even our pooch, Gordy, got in on the outdoor fun.

Happy St. Patrick's Day


Sunday, March 14, 2010

Birthday present...check!

Here it is the other half of Corbyn's birthday present. I used one of my favorite blogger's patterns. I have purchased almost all of Ashley's patterns and enjoyed making every single one. The instructions are so easy to follow, which is probably why I like them so much.

I love the way the hood turned out. I think the stripes are going to look too cute around his face. I hope to get some pics of the little guy in his new shirt.

I try not to let my kiddos eat too much candy. So when holidays come around, the candy usually gets put in a bag in the pantry and forgotten about until the next holiday. Sorry Grandma!! During my kitchen cleaning on Sunday my children took an unsupervised opportunity to raid the candy bag. Yes, those are pink heart suckers from valentines day.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Kicking it up a notch?

Aww. Rhiannon you are too sweet in that last post! We must be having a lovefest vibe going because I've been thinking about my post all week and YOU are my inspiration for it. Here goes...

Well, it was bound to happen. I just didn't think it would be so soon. After only 5 posts it is very clear who the better photographer around these parts is. And her name doesn't start with an "M"! Actually I've known this for a while and have been ok with it. See, I have a pretty fancy schmancy camera, for me anyways, but I haven't taken the time to actually learn how to use it. I did poke around the manual a bit after I bought it and fooled around with the Aperture setting once but I'm kinda freaked out by it all. So I'm usually shooting in Program mode or *gasp* one of the pre-set function settings. Basically my DSLR is parading around like a normal, everyday "point-and-shoot" camera. I would do better to take a class and have someone teach me basic photography skills than sit around reading the manual. Frankly, I don't have the time or the discipline to learn it on my own. BUT when Rhiannon first mentioned she wanted to start a blog together I knew that she would be just the motivation I needed to improve my photography skills. She has natural skill in this department and a great eye and style for some pretty neat shots. Last year she told me about a site she likes to read that may be helpful for me called Digital Photography School. It has forums, photography challenges and a newsletter with useful tips, product reveiws and so on. A couple days ago one of the contributors reviewed a product that caught my eye called Professor Kobre's Lightscoop. This seemed like something right up my alley. It's a little doohickie you can put on your camera that bounces the light from the flash all over the room and makes your pictures look tons better without any real effort from you, the photographer. I love it! What I don't love about it is, ahem, paying for it. It doesn't look that expensive but it also looks simple enough to copy.

After a short Google search I came across a few templates and decided to drag myself to Michael's for some supplies:1. A 20x30 piece of black press board (I think this is press board. It was with the poster board but it is quite a bit thicker).
2. Foil cardstock.
3. An Exacto knife.
4. A glue stick.

The template I found is from this post on Flickr. I have a Nikon and my flash was slightly different sized so after I cut out the template from the copy paper I made adjustments before I cut out the press board.

This is how it turned out:

And here are some shots.

Without my "lightscoop":

And with it:

Not too shabby. I think I may still make a couple adjustments to my template and make another one. I certainly have enough supplies to make at least a dozen more! The foil packet has some copper colored sheets in it, too, that I may try in place of the silver color to copy the Warming Lightscoop. Oooohhh, getting fancy! So, for less than $12 I can make two (or more) versions of a lightscoop which retails for around $35.

Am I kicking my photography up a notch? Well, that may take a while to decide but I sure am liking my new homemade gadget. :)

Also, in case you're wondering why on Earth I took pictures of that hideous green chair with the stains all over it, it is next on my project list. Hopefully the next time you see this guy, he won't be green!

Happy Weekend.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Where it all began

Ok, I have to show you my first official sewing project. I made this dress for Maria while on vacation at, you'll never guess, Megan's. We spent our spring break with her in Georgia last year. I would have to say that is where my love for sewing began. I owe it all to you, Megan.I love the little girls on this fabric. I know it is hard to see them in this picture. Maybe I will pull the dress out and take some better pics. I think that Maria will be able to wear it again this summer.

Here we are reading some craft blog, I'm sure. Notice Megan's cute shirt, she made it!! I also love how she has accessorised it with a measuring tape.
Happy sewing.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

A boy and a bag

This little guy belongs to one of my best friends and he is turning 1 this weekend. I am actually ahead of the game and have finished one of his birthday presents, this adorable bag.

I used Dana's Hobo bag tutorial here. I decided to use a tshirt for the bag and was able to use some of the existing seems.(score-the less sewing the better) I plan on filling it with other projects from her Celebrate the Boy month. If you have a boy, you definitely need to check it out. If you don't have a boy, you still need to check it out.

Happy Sewing


Monday, March 8, 2010

Dumpster Diving

The town I work in is about 20 minutes from my home. When I come into town, I pass the local auction house. They host auctions there most Saturday mornings. I never seem to remember until I am passing on my way to work and running late. I still get excited, because I know on my way home all the left overs will be out next to the dumpster. One Saturday I found this wooden ironing board.

Now of course it did not look like this when I found it. I don't have any before photos, sorry.

I started by decoupaging some of my children's art work onto the board. I then sprayed the whole board with some gloss coat. This will help protect the priceless artwork. I had some of those silver magnetic strips from Ikea that I had bought for another project and never used. (happens a lot) I gave those a coat of chalkboard paint and screwed them to the board.
I added some hooks for our keys at the bottom. My husband put wire on the back and did the hanging. I don't like to measure and he doesn't like putting too many holes in the wall. So I usually leave the hanging to him.I think that might be a portrait of me drawn by my son.
The finished product hanging in our kitchen above the antique bench from my mother. I love the way it looks and could have never found a message board cuter or cheaper. Here's one of the artist and what our message board looks like when I don't have it cleared off for blog pictures.
Hope you are inspired to do some dumpster diving!!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Lounge Act

Here we go with the second refashion for the sleepwear deprived tot. I snagged this men's robe at Goodwill for about $1.50 and knew right away that I could make at least one pair of lounge pants from it. My guy is 3, with a classic 3 year-old's body. No waist. No butt. So I may get lucky and squeak out two pairs from this robe.

This is what the robe looked liked before I started cutting:

I made a rough pattern by tracing a pair of his pants that fit onto some brown paper. Then I just laid that onto the folded robe and cut away.

By the way, that is a little trick I learned from my seamstress friend, use canned veggies or soup to hold the pattern in place if you don't have pattern weights. They're so handy, especially when using that brown paper because it is hard to pin through.

I cut the pattern out on the bottom of the robe as it was folded so I ended up only having to sew the inseam and crotch seams (no side seam or hemming needed). Then I made a casing for the elastic. Easy peasy.

I also managed to get some shots of him wearing them!

He seems pretty happy with them. Yay!