Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Outfits - A Sneak Peek

You have no idea how thrilled I am to be DONE with these outfits! I think they turned out great! I used the tutorial HERE for the skirts, with just a slight modification. (I didn't have time to hand stitch the waistband to the skirt.)

I also thought the ruffle at the bottom would be a little overwhelming on Penny's skirt, so I just left it off. I used the tutorial HERE for the shirts. This reverse applique was so easy to do! I'll definitely be doing this again in the future.

And for Petie's bow tie, I used the tutorial HERE. I actually make him two, one out of the green fabric, and one out of the red, because I didn't know which one I would like better. (I like the green.) This tutorial was so easy, I was able to make both bow ties in less than an hour!

Happy Birthday Penny!

So I know this is a little late, and honestly, I would have forgotten to do this all together if it hadn't been for my mother. So Mom, this is for you.

One year (and a few days) ago, our sweet little Penny graced us with her presence. Not in the normal way most babies do with the whole epidural and monitors or even hospital rooms for that matter. Nope, or little Penny decided to enter the world via our minivan in the parking lot of a nearby bank. (Get it, "Penny", real original huh?) Here's a collection of photo's from her first year.

Monday, November 15, 2010

I Just Need Some Elastic

These are the words The Professor hears from me as I head out the door to the craft store.

I think he's no longer surprised when I come home with this. No, that's not all from one trip, but it's also not all I came home with. Between the patterns I bought at $1.00 a piece, and the fabric for $1.50 a yard, I couldn't pass up these deals. That's 17 yards of beautiful, adorable fabric just waiting to be used for my next project - right after I get back from the store, I just need some buttons.

On A Roll

I will no longer fear the buttonhole. I will no longer fear the zipper (ok, I may still fear the zipper a little). I will no longer not buy the cute pattern I see in the pattern book just because it requires a technique I've never done before. I will sew clothes and they will be cute despite my lack of sewing knowledge. And before I start to get too proud and the Lord humbles me with my next sewing project, I'll just show you the finished dress.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Comic Book Writers In The Making

Our kids don't eat fast food very often, and when they do, we usually try to avoid the "happy meal" thing. However, last week I wasn't feeling very well, so The Professor stopped by my favorite chicken serving fast food restaurant and picked up dinner. The item that came in these particular kid's meals was a comic book. I'll be honest here, I've never understood the whole comic book thing. I don't get them, don't find them the least bit entertaining. I graduated from the whole picture book thing in elementary school, but to each his own. Maybe I'll have to get my comic obsessed brother to explain the whole phenomena to me someday. So where am I going with all this? Well, needless to say, my kids loved them and immediately wanted to make their own comic book. We helped them come up with a story line and figure out what pictures needed to be drawn to portray the story. We had to do the drawing for them, but almost all the rest of the creativity was theirs. Here is the result of mine and Patty's collaboration.

I know, before you say anything, I am aware there is already an Ant Bully. Patty was adamant that this be the name of her villain. He is apparently no relation to the Ant Bully in the movies. This was so much fun to do with the kids and I learned that it's not as easy as it would seem to just sit down and crank out a comic book. One thing that did help though was these printables. Petie's isn't finished yet (it's the whole coloring issue) and honestly, like many things he starts, it probably never will be.


We had a fun time taking the kids out Trick-Or-Treating. This is actually the first time I've ever gotten a chance to go out with them. In the past The Professor has taken them out and I've stayed home to pass out candy, but this year we all braved the bitter wind and went out together.

Patty chose to just wear an old dress up outfit of hers. She didn't care that it was ripped, she still wanted to be The Little Mermaid.

Petie was a Ninja - a costume we bought on clearance last year that I can't believe held up all year.

Peanut was supposed to be a fairy. Here's where my little bit of advice comes in. If you have a two year old who is in the beginning stages of potty training, don't let them put their costume on until right before you head out. As you can tell, I didn't follow this advice, so she ended up having to wear this too small ladybug costume she wore last year.

Penny was just along for the ride sporting this adorable Tigger costume that all the siblings before her have worn at some point.

We hope you all had a fun Halloween. Cold as it was, we had a great time and have consumed more than enough calories to make up for the walking we did.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Spider Ring Art

Remember this?

I love how it turned out! So I was so excited the other day when I came across this similar idea, at Ameroonie Designs, for halloween.

I already had some spider rings at home just sitting around creeping everyone out and just waiting to be used for something. I had both orange and black spiders and wasn't sure which I was going to use. I knew I didn't want it to be quite as colorful as the inspiration piece above though. I first tried the black on the orangy - brown polka dot paper, which I liked, but wasn't completely sold on it.

But in the end, I decided I really liked the simplicity of the orange against the black.

I know it looks very lonely hanging there on the wall all by itself, but I haven't figured out yet what to put around it. Oh well, there's always next year.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

We All Scream For Ice Cream

For some reason, which I cannot figure out, Petie hates to color. Not when it's his idea of course, just when I ask him to color something during his school time. So this morning, when confronted with a picture to color, he declared that he no longer wants to do school. But, lucky for me, before he made this declaration I snapped a picture of him doing this activity. To go along with the letter I this week, he had to take the ice cream scoops with lowercase letters on them and match them to the cone with the correct upper case letter on it. He's getting a lot better at recognizing his lower case letters and only has trouble with a few of the hard ones like b, p, q, and d.

Monday, October 25, 2010

My First Dress In A Long, Long Time

I haven't sewn a real article of clothing following a real pattern in many, many years. So when I recently picked up a few patterns and some material at the local craft store, I didn't have very high hopes for them actually turning out. Well, I am happy to report that I successfully completed the first dress the other day (zipper and all) with no major setbacks. It's not perfect, but for a first attempt, it's not bad.

See, not bad huh? I'm sure it was just beginner's luck, but I'll take it & run with it. Now to go do something with the other six patterns I purchased.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Nothing Says Fall Like...

Picking Pumpkins

Posing for pictures

Hay Mazes

And, Pony rides

When You Don't Have A Pacifier

Penny likes her pacifiers, so imagine her delight when she found that she can use the mushroom from the kid's play food set as a makeshift paci. This child cracks me up.

We Really Do Have School Around Here

I thought it was time for another school related post, since my kids grandparents read this and I don't want them thinking all I do is crafts all day while their grandkids are left to fend for themselves in the schooling department.

This week Petie was on the letter G, so our theme was G is for Go. We did all transportation related games and activities for the week.

For this activity, I printed this car picture from here. It's meant to be used with bingo dot markers, but we don't have those, so I improvised. I buried a set of lowercase alphabet tiles in rice. Petie had to fish around, pull one out and then match it to the uppercase letter on the car. Once he found the match he was supposed to color in that letter. Petie isn't a big fan of coloring, so he just wanted to circle them instead.

Patty learned more about Hammurabi and the Assyrians this week in history. She also listened to part of the story of Gilgamesh, one of the oldest fairy tales in the world. After she listened I had her illustrate her favorite part of the story. This was her drawing of Gilgamesh diving to the bottom of the ocean to find the magical plant that would make him young again.

I'm not sure I remember this part from the story, but apparently he encountered an octopus along the way.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Big Plans For These

They are doing some remodeling of classrooms at the Professors work. As a result, they have tons of these babies sitting around in storage.

They have no plans for them at the college, so they allowed us to take a few of them. Patty has been wanting a desk in her room for those few times that she needs to work in quiet. Needless to say, our basement school room isn't exactly a quiet classroom environment. Besides being a bit dusty, they're in really good shape. I'm looking forward to sanding them down and painting them to match each of the kid's rooms.

Maybe I'll sew them chair pads too. These were previously desks for college students, so I think my little ones will need the added height of a chair pad.

Bribery Sewing

I know, it's shameful, but sometimes parents have to resort to bribery for the good of the family. We recently had to move Peanut back into her toddler bed after we had already moved her to a "big girl bed". We weren't sure how she would feel about this "downgrade", so in order to get her to agree, I promised I would make her a special pillow case. I don't know if I made her this offer because I thought it would help in the transition, or if it was because I needed a sewing project. It was probably the latter, but she was happy either way. So, here's how it turned out.
I had this really adorable bug print flannel I had picked up at JoAnn's one Christmas for $1 a yard. I had planned on making a baby blanket with it, but never got around to it. To make the pillow case I followed this tutorial with a few modifications. I didn't quite have enough of the bug fabric, so I was only able to use it for the front. I did have this coordinating striped fabric though that I had purchased at the same time (along with the polka dots I used for the band). I think it's really fun with the bugs on one side, and stripes on the other though.
This was incredibly easy, and would have been even easier if I hadn't had to piece the front & back together.

Fun With Glow Sticks

The other day, the Professor brought home a few glow sticks left over from an experiment at work. The kids had tons of fun playing with them, while I had a fun time playing around with the shutter speed on my camera.