My Best Project

I'm sure you know by now that we welcomed our little man into the world earlier this week. He arrived on Tuesday March 29th at 2:55pm weighing in at a whopping 8 lb. 6 oz. We are both doing great! Forgive me if I disappear for a few days. I'll be busy loving on my new little munchkin. He is so amazing!


Spring Garland How To

This is turning into the year of garlands. Why? Because they are cheap, easy and they pack a big punch. I loved my Valentine's Garland so much that I decided to try out a spring version. And it's... well... very springy. And colorful. And bright. But it's cute and Miss. S adores it! She keeps telling be how beautiful the flowers are. So I guess it works.

With the heart garland I cut out the hearts, glue gunned them together, then sewed them all in a row. Super easy. This one ended up being a little more complicated just because I didn't use the sewing machine. With all the different colors I didn't want the white thread to show. So I took crochet string that I had on hand and glue gunned them all together. Here's what I did.

1. Gather supplies. I used 8 pieces of different colored felt (They were 4 for a dollar), crochet string (any string will do), ribbon, a simple flower pattern (drawn by hand and far from perfect) scissors and a glue gun.

2. Cut out 4 flowers from each color (I ended up having to use more but this was a good starting out point) and 8 dots from both yellow and orange (again I ended up having to cut more). Depending on how long you want it you could use more or less, but I would suggest you measure first.
2. Start glueing them to the string. I didn't cut my string until the end. You will use 2 flowers to make each one. Put the back of the flower behind the string and dab glue gun across the string. Then place the top flower on top of the string. Sandwiching the string between the two sides (Hopefully the above picture will kind of show you what I'm trying to explain).

3. I then dabbed a little glue on each petal to make sure they stayed together and glued on
center dots.

4. Once complete I cut 2 lengths of ribbon about a foot long. Fold them in half and glue them to the end flowers to act as ties. Make sure to trim your string slightly shorter than the garland so that it doesn't hang out and show. Hang and enjoy!

Like I said I ended up using a little more than I anticipated. I cut out four more flowers out of different colors, 2 yellow dots and 2 orange dots. I didn't put the flowers in any particular order. They are just random. I don't have a fancy machine that cuts out all the pieces for me so this was all by hand. It does take some time to get everything cut out and glued together. I cut out everything yesterday and assembled today. All during nap time. It really didn't seem to hard. I watched some T.V. and the time went by really fast. I think it took me a total of four hours to make and the cost of felt. Everything else I had on hand. It will definitely add some Spring to your home and if you have little girls they will oh and ah over it.


Dresser Inspiration

If you have looked at my Pinterest Boards then you know that we will be giving two dressers a makeover sometime in the near future (hopefully). One we already have and one we are picking up this weekend that we found for $60 on Craigslist. The one in our bedroom no longer works for us and it seems a little juvenile. So we are going to give that one to the kiddos. It's been through a couple transformations already. It went from white with pastel stenciled butterflies, to a chocolate brown paint, to the dark stain it is now. I'm thinking we'll do something along the lines of these...
This one I found on Pinterest and couldn't find the original link to give credit. If you know where this originated please let me know so I can credit the photo.
This one I found on Rearranged Design. I like them both, but envision doing mine in different colors. Maybe yellow or green? I like the orange but I feel like orange is more of a boy color. I need something a little more gender neutral. I like the turquoise in the top image a lot. The dresser we have is shaped similarly to both of these. Tall, four drawers, with clean lines. I'm most excited about this one because I think you can take a lot more risks with kids furniture to make them fun and funky. You can be a lot more creative. It will be really fun.

I'm having a harder time with the one for our room. It is a low dresser with six drawers. Three on each side. It too has very clean lines. The problem is Denny and I often don't agree on things. So far we both really like this one...
Found on Three Men and a Lady. I love this. I think I love it though because of the whole room. Grey and yellow is one of my favorite color combos. I'm not sure this will have the same effect on the dresser we have. This is much more ornate which makes it much more interesting. I think if we painted the dresser we have all yellow it might just look plain. I don't know. I do love it though.

Anyway I can't wait to share the before and afters with you guys. I have no idea when that will be seeing as though with in a week we will have a newborn. Hopefully it will be sooner than later though.


Spring Outside My Door

We are loving the warm weather right now. 81 degrees currently with a high of 88. Yes please. The only thing that worries me is how hot the summer is going to be. Oh well. At the moment it's perfect. Miss. S and I have been enjoying the sun shine today. Honestly not much else is getting done. Those darn burp cloths will just have to wait. Today is all about sun, blooms and warmth.


Cloth Diaper Burp Cloths

When I had Miss. S I got a lot of burp cloths as gifts. A lot! This time around I got zero. Last night I was cleaning out her closet so we could have room for this little guy and I found 6 cloth diapers. Let's be honest cloth diapers make the best burp cloths. They are super absorbent. My sister had made Miss. S about 12 burp cloths when she was born by just simply trimming the ends in cute grosgrain ribbon. So I thought I'd do the same.

Simply was what I thought. Simply was not what I got. I believe that honesty is the best policy so I'll be quite frank with this one. Sometimes sewing projects aren't fun. Sometimes they fail. I guess they didn't fail. They turned out ok looking, but it was a pain to even get three done. I have three more to tackle tomorrow. Maybe it's because I'm a perfectionist and I had to make sure they were done oh so perfectly. I don't know. I just did not enjoy making these at all. I don't know how my sister managed to do 12. I'll finish the last three tomorrow, and I'm sure they will turn out cute enough. But will I have fun doing it. Probably not. My advice to you if you want to try these out is don't waist your time. You will just end up frustrated. Maybe my sister Aubrey has better advice than I do though. The ones she made turned out amazing. Sometimes things don't turn out as planned. Sometimes it's harder than you expect or they just don't look right. There is however always something to be learned along the way. I guess you can apply the same things to sewing as you do to life.


Book Review: On Becoming Baby Wise

Everyone has opinions on parenting. I think we all have our own philosophies as to what is important for our children. People read different parenting books and adhere to the principles they feel are important. With that said I know of people who LOVE Baby Wise and would do nothing else and I know people who despise it. Which is ok. We are all entitled to our own opinions. To each their own right? Recently I decided to pick up my copy and brush up on all that I have forgotten. Miss. S is three and a half. That's a long time and I have honestly forgotten a lot about having a new born. What I do remember was that the first couple of months were rough on us. Really really rough. I received this book as a baby shower gift so I decided to read it and follow what it had to say. Along with the book I got a lot of encouragement from my sister Aubrey who had done Baby Wise with a couple of her kids. Can I just say the difference was night and day. I struggled with being a mother those first couple of months. After I committed to Baby Wise Miss. S was a totally different baby. Happy all the time. Sleeping through the night. Really a delightful baby. By 4 months she was sleeping 12 hours a night and we were all much happier for it. I truly give credit to Baby Wise. We were pretty strict with her schedule at first but then as she got older we got more and more relaxed and it really worked for our family. Now I also like to be realistic & I know it may not be the best option for every baby. Each child is different. They each have their own personalities and temperament. I will definitely be trying Baby Wise with this new little man, but if he doesn't respond then I will do what ever works. As of right now though I am one of those people who LOVES Baby Wise and would recommend it to my friends any day.


A Simple St. Patrick's Day

I mentioned before that I probably wouldn't do anything big for St. Patrick's Day this year. I do want to make it more fun in the future, but this year we just have a lot going on. This morning we woke up early for a Dr.'s appointment so we got drive thru breakfast tacos. So instead of green milk in our cereal we had green milk with our snack of mint oreos. Of coarse we all wore green as to not get pinched. Really though we didn't do anything too out of the ordinary. Miss. S and I met up with some friends to see Tangled at the dollar theaters. So I guess that was a little bit special. Now we are at home relaxing. I think we may go for a walk and hunt for four leaf clovers in a little bit. But that's pretty much it. How do you celebrate St. Patrick's Day with your kids? Do you have any fun traditions?


$7 Walmart Slipper Makeover

I've been thinking about the things I want to take to the hospital when we go have this baby. A robe, Comfy jammies and slippers were at the top of my list. The only slippers I had were these big fluffy purple things that are great for winter and cold temperatures, but I'm not going to lie they are kinda funny looking. So the other day I picked up a the most basic plain black pair of dearfoam slippers at Walmart for $7. The key word in the last sentence was plain. They needed some sprucing up. This morning I used the fabric pom pom tutorial from my Spring Craft Round Up (tutorial found here), made a couple of adjustments and this is what I came up with.
I love them!!! They are super easy too. Maybe a little time consuming to cut out all the pieces, but once that is done they were really a breeze to make. Instead of using circles I used a simple five petal flower silhouette. Other than that I used the tutorial pretty closely. I would have preferred to put them on shoe clips but I couldn't find them at my local craft stores and I didn't feel like waiting for them to come in the mail. There are plenty of Etsy shops that sell them. So I just removed the bow that was already on the slippers and then sewed them directly to the slipper. Couldn't you just imagine these on a cute pair of black pumps though. Maybe I'll do some shoe clips later on. In the meantime these are making me happy.
P.S. Excuse my feet. They are misshapen and swollen and dry. Not the most attractive feet to look at.


Mommy Guilt & Japan Relief

I must be really tired today or this pregnancy is just starting to take it's toll on my emotions. I've noticed over the last couple days that my patience level is on a rapid decline and Miss. S has been particularly whinny. Not a good combination. That means more shouting and snapping from me. Poor thing. She really doesn't deserve it. I just can't stand to hear another "Mommy" in a high pitched whine. It's driving me bonkers. I'm sure it's from lack of sleep. I wake up about ten times a night now either to use the loo or adjust my sleeping position. I feel really bad. I should be really enjoying these last couple weeks where it's just the two of us. Playing with her, taking her on outings, painting with her or just laughing with her. It makes me sad to think that we won't ever be just the two of us again and this is how I'm spending my time with her. Counting down the minutes until nap time so that we can both get some much needed rest. Generally we really have been having a good time together. It's just been the last couple days. Which is really bad timing. Cause today when she went down for a nap I turned on the news and immediately the guilt set in. I have no right at all to complain about anything right now let alone a whiney child. If that's the least of my problems then I'm pretty blessed. Watching the coverage of the Earthquake/Tsunami aftermath over the past few days has put a lot of things into perspective. Just imagining all the children who lost their parents or the parents who are missing their children makes me ache to my very core. And here I am safe and sound and grouchy. That is just so wrong. It definitely makes me take a second look at how I need to change my attitude. How I need to count my blessings and love the ones who are around me.

As I watch the footage on T.V. of everything that's happening in Japan I'm moved to want to do more. I know that every little bit helps at this time of need. Last night we we were going through all the things we need to give away. We thought for a moment about just walking them out to the trash. Then the guilt set in. I knew we couldn't just throw perfectly good items in the trash when so much was needed else where. This morning I reed this blog post at Tea Rose Home and was reminded that you don't need to donate tons of money for it to make a difference. Even the smallest donation goes to good use. I encourage you to read that post. The author is directly effected by the Tsunami as she is from one of the areas that was hit the hardest. She still has most of her family and friends there. She did a lot of research as to the best places to donate to. I'm adding this button to my sidebar. If you would like more information as to what you can do to help just click on the button.
It will take you to her post and then direct you to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Humanitarian Aid page. I am a member of this church and I know that all donations go towards those who are in the greatest need. I mentioned last week that we had a quilting night with the teenage girls that go to church with us. We were assembling quilts to donate to the church. I can only hope that soon they will be on their way to those who are effected in Japan. Just remember every little bit helps. The people of Japan and any others who are effected are in my prayers daily.


Getting Crafty Spring Edition

Back in December I did a holiday craft tutorial round up. I have been really enjoying our springy weather lately. It just makes me want to bring all that color & sunshine & warmth inside my house. So here is a round up of Spring craft tutorials. I've been saving them all up on my Pinterest page. So I'm sorry if this is a repeat for those of you who have already checked that out.
Image found via Sunshine and Carousels

1. The list wouldn't be complete without a couple garlands. I actually want to make this one for Miss. S's room. To hang above her bed. Over at Sunshine and Carousels they are doing Spring Fling for the entire month of March. Just in case you need a little more Spring Inspiration.

2. The second garland to make the list. This would be fun to do for Easter. It kinda reminds me of my Valentine's Garland but much more colorful.

3. Big Fabric Pom Poms. I'm thinking this would be fun to do for my entry way.

4. The smaller version of the above Pom Poms used as cupcake toppers. I love them. Hey Carrie don't we have a baby shower coming up? These would be adorable for that.

5. I've been wanting to make a yarn wreath for a while. Denny hates them, but I still might do it. I've seen them a lot around Christmas, but a Spring version is a nice change.

6. This cute rick rack pillow looks easy peasy & so dang cute. It could spruce up any room.

7. Quilted Vintage Sheet Placemats. I'm not much of a quilter but these are darling. Doesn't get much more springy than that.

Happy Spring! And Happy Crafting!

In the Home Stretch

We are in the final few weeks before we have another little baby in the house. I would love it to be a little sooner. I'm sure everyone at this point feels like that. It's crazy to think we will not only have one little person to be responsible for but two. It's exciting, but a little scary at the same time. Most of all we are excited to meet him. We're curious to see if we will have another blondie or maybe he'll look a little more like his Mommy. I'm anxious to see what his temperament will be and what he will bring to our little family. I'm ready to know him.

I still have a couple more projects I want to get done before he arrives. So I'm going to keep blogging every day until I we go to the hospital. Then it might be a little more sparse. Hopefully we'll get our schedule back on track quickly though. Cross your fingers for us!


A Great New (to me) Tool

Example of a pin.

Nap time is my time. I'm so lucky that my 3 year old still takes a really long nap every afternoon. It's wonderful to have that time to clean, do projects, nap myself, blog and of coarse just surf the internet. I find so much inspiration through other peoples blogs, Etsy, Flicker ect. When I find something really great and I want to remember it I used to email the link to myself. So I wouldn't forget it or I wouldn't forget where I found it. It wasn't exactly a pain, but I wouldn't say it was the most effective method of remembering things. In comes Pinterest. For some of you this is old news. I've seen it on a lot of other peoples blogs so I know that I might be repeating information you may already have. However I just recently got my account and started pinning and I really had to share my thoughts. If you haven't heard of Pinterest and have no idea what I'm talking about this is what it's all about. I'm always a little leery of new social networking sites. I've tried several and I don't see the need to join too many different sites. So even though I was definitely curious about Pinterest I wasn't sure if I needed to join anymore sites. I mean I keep up two blogs (a private family blog & this one), I do Facebook, Flickr and I have a Good Reads account. Isn't this enough? I have to say Pinterest exceeded my expectations. It is such a great tool. It is a website where you can keep all those things you find on the internet that you don't want to forget. All in one organized place. You can create different "boards" or collections, brows through other people pins and get stuck looking at beautiful things for hours. When you pin something it automatically saves the link to it. So you never forget where you found something or who to give credit to. So handy. No matter what you are interested in I'm pretty sure you can find this useful. To sign up you have to request an invite. It may take a little while for them to get back to you, but it's worth the wait. It's a relatively new site so they are always updating things and trying to make it better. I have found it so useful and I've only been on a week! If you want to check out my boards you can click here. Sometimes I may post about something I've pinned. So I'm sorry if I repeat myself. I hope that you find this as useful as I do. Happy pinning everybody!

Example of a Pin Board

Anthro Inspired Necklace Giveaway Winner

So the lucky lady to win the necklace is...
BETH! E-mail me your address and I'll get that in the mail ASAP.

I know the competition was stiff on this one. Maybe next time I'll make something that more people will want to win!


Another Favorite Blanket

When you are expecting a baby the most abundant gift people give you are clothes. I think a close second is blankets. When we were expecting Miss. S we got blankets of every size, texture, color you name it we got it. However we found that we were using the same ones over and over again. I already did a post on our favorite receiving blankets. Now it's on to another one of our favorites.
My friend Krista gave us a small car seat/stroller sized blanket when we had Miss. S. It is darling. It has a soft minky on one side and a mix of florals and textures on the other. It quickly became one of our favorites. It was so useful too. Perfect for going places with us whether in the car seat or stroller. Not too big and bulky. It was easy to grab and go. So recreating this blanket was one of the first things on my list when we found out we were expecting. And how fun that I got to make it totally different for a boy!
Besides receiving blankets this is the first blanket I have ever made on my own. Without the help of my Mom, sisters or friends. I used the blanket made by Krista as a guide for this one. First of all when I got the fabric in the mail that I ordered I about died. It was even better than I had hoped. I used 9 9.5" squares. Two of them being the same minky I used for the back and one chenille for the middle. The rest I tried to mix and match different patterns. I loved the chevron stripes so much I had to use it twice. It turned out just perfect. I love it so much. It took me about 4 hours from start to finish to make. I think it would have gone faster except I had never worked with chenille before and it was a little tricky getting it to line up correctly. For my first time though it went pretty smoothly and the results were just what I wanted. I'm a little anxious to try out another one. It was really fun to do.


Why Do I Sew?

Tomorrow we are having a quilting night with the Young Women ages 12-17 in our church. I'm so excited about it. I feel strongly that sewing is a skill that people should learn and the earlier you learn the better. So I've been thinking over the last couple of days why I feel that way. Why is it so important to me?

I come from a long line of sewers. I think a better term for them would be seamstresses. My Granny, Mom, Aunts. They all sew. My Mother is seriously phenomenal. A lot of times she doesn't even need a pattern. I remember when we were shopping for my wedding dress I tried on the perfect dress at Neiman Marcus. She looked at it and said "I can do that". The next day we went to the LA Fashion District bought all the fabric for $85 and a few months later I had the perfect most flawless gown. To say she is talented is an understatement.

Sadly I didn't tap into her immense amount of knowledge earlier. My interest in sewing didn't peak until a few years ago when Miss. S was born. I always just took advantage of the fact that my Mom is so amazing. After Miss. S came into my life all of a sudden there were so many things I wanted to make for her. Luckily I had picked up a few really basic skills from her to get myself started. The rest is up to me as she lives in Utah and I live in Texas. It has been a pretty hard road. With a lot of successes but a lot of frustration as well. I still feel like I'm just beginning every time I sit down at my machine and I always always make mistakes. It's all part of the learning process I suppose. I have a lot to learn still. I don't think I would continue if I didn't feel like it was important. And the feeling you get after you've completed a project is priceless. It feels so good.

I feel like sewing is one of those skills that was past down from generation to generation through Mothers and Daughters. Some where along the way a lot of Mothers stopped teaching their children this art form. I think it's kind of sad. Good news is I see a renewed interest in sewing that is spreading once again. There are so many things that you can do with sewing. Even if you only know how to sew a straight line. With a straight line you can sew pillows, curtains, hem pants and make baby blankets. Learning to sew can save you money and it keeps you from being limited to what is sold on the shelves in stores. To me sewing is a way of creating something from nothing. It is a creative outlet that has endless possibilities. It is an invaluable skill to learn. Having a basic knowledge of sewing is beneficial for so many reasons. If you don't know how to sew I encourage you to learn a few of the basics. I think once you start learning you won't want to stop.


Ladybug Music

After my post about the Rockabye Baby CD's a friend of mine from our Encino days left me a comment about more kids music. Her name is Beth and she works as a music teacher for Ladybug Music in Studio City CA. She is an incredibly talented lady! She thought I might want to see what Ladybug Music is all about. So she sent me a couple of CD's to listen to. Well we got them in the mail on Friday and we haven't stopped listening to them yet. Miss. S absolutely loves them, and as for me I really enjoy them too. There are a lot of familiar tunes all with a new spin on them. Also a lot of original songs that your kids will fall in love with and will become standards in your home. They are all really funky and fun. I even find Miss. S singing some as she is playing in her room. So far her favorite is Tiny Tim. Please check out their web site. You can listen to a few songs and purchase CD's. I believe you can not only purchase the CD's but they have them for sale on iTunes as well. It has me wishing there was a Ladybug Music class here in San Antonio. Maybe someday!

Oh and if my recommendation isn't good enough for you then maybe Idena Menzel's is. I think she is a pretty credible source.


Better Late Than Never: An Oscar Fashion Review

So the Oscars were this past Sunday. I should have done this post say on Monday, but I'm just now getting around to it. Did anyone else notice how modest some of the dresses were? I'm thinking of three in particular (although I think there were maybe a couple more). It's refreshing. These three women still look stunningly gorgeous. Yet they are all covered up.
Annette Bening in Naeem Kahn. I feel like this dress is so age appropriate. It's also effortless.
Michelle Williams in Chanel. Honestly can you go wrong with Chanel? She looks so feminine and demure. I love her pixie haircut too.
Amy Adams in L'Wren Scott. Proving that modest can still be sexy. This is by far my favorite. She looks absolutely amazing!

I love it when I spot dresses on the red carpet that are modest. It really isn't often you see it and still think it's fashion forward. Modest dresses in the past have always looked plain and out dated. These looks are anything but that. I can't wait to see next years show.


Anthro Inspired Necklace Giveaway

So here is the necklace I made for myself out of the polka dot silk material. I'm not going to lie I was a bit worried about this one. The second I started cutting it to size it started unraveling at an alarming rate. It frayed WAY more than the other fabric. So when I was done stringing the beads I gave it a little trim. It actually turned out just as I envisioned it in my head. I might just have to trim it up a bit every so often, but I love it.

So since this was such an easy fun project to take on (and also because I have a lot of supplies left over) I thought I would share one with my friends. Leave a comment on this post telling me which you would rather have (the soft green or the spunky polka dot) by next Thursday March 10. One week from today. I will giveaway one necklace and will announce the winner next Friday March 11! Don't forget to tell your friends!


DIY Anthropologie Inspired Necklace

I've been loving big wooden beaded necklaces lately. Yesterday I was looking through websites looking for inspiration so I could DIY one when I came across this one on sale for $19.95 (originally $38) on the Anthropologie web site.
For Anthropologie it's really not a bad price. I love it for a lot of reasons. I love how they did nothing with the beads. No stain, no paint, nothing. I also love how the fabric isn't finished. It kind of gives it this raw frayed appearance of coming undone. Yet it still looks soft and feminine. Sometimes I feel like Anthropologie is just daring every single crafter out there to DIY their items. Some of them are just so easy. I mean would you pay $20 bucks (or more) for this necklace knowing that I just made it for less than $5? Oh and it only took me 15 or 20 minutes to do it. Here's how mine turned out.
Pretty close right? Obviously the color and texture are different, but the overall effect remains the same. I love the finished product. Here's what I did.

1. Went to Joann's and bought a bag of 19 wooden beads for $3.99. You will use 7 beads total. Note* They are located in the wood craft isle not the jewelry isle. Then I got a quarter of a yard of fabric. On sale for $4.99 a yard. Note* it does not take the full quarter of a yard, but I got extra in case it didn't work out on the first try. I'm making a couple necklaces out of these supplies.

2. Trim your fabric from selvage to selvage (don't cut off your selvages yet) 3 inches wide. Don't worry if it's not perfect. Remember it's supposed to look frayed and messy.

3. Thread your first bead to the center of your fabric strip. I rolled the ends to help force it through the hole, but honestly it really wasn't that hard. Tie a knot on each side of the bead.

4. Thread remaining six beads. Three on each side. Tying knots between each bead and on the ends.

5. Trim off selvages.

6. Tie in a floppy bow around your neck. Your done!
I made this one for a gift. I also bought a navy blue with white polka dot silk that I will be making for myself tomorrow. so check back. I may just do another give away. We'll see.


It's Back!

Shade is back my friends! And it looks like they are returning to the basics! It's what they do best really. I really want to scoop this top up for after the baby is born. I can never have too many stripes.

New Fabric Choices

I can no longer find the fabric I had chosen to make the bedding for this little guy. It's all gone. I can find it in pink, but not in blue. It was sad. So I had to go back to the drawing board. I'm not going to work on the bumper for a little while since he will be in the pack & play in our room at first, but I am dying to make him a blanket. So I ordered these prints today, and sometime in the next couple weeks I'll show you guys the finished blanket. I can't wait. It's by Ann Kelle from her Remix line.
I love how bright and cheerful the prints are. I'm pretty sure I'm going to use the Chevron Print on the outside of the bumper, and for the inside I'll use either a yellow or light green polka dot. Compared to the last fabric this is much more colorful, but I'm a sucker for a chevron stripe. This way I also have a lot of color options to use through out his room.