Thursday, September 30, 2010

Around the World This Thursday

If you are just tuning into "Around the World This Thursday" stop over and check out this post.  If you're linking up a blog post of your own this week, simply add a link via the McLinky below.

Nurmberg Castle

Medevil Artwork on Castle Gate

C climbing the foundation of the Castle

Your turn.  What do things look like on your side of the world this Thursday?

I'll start working on a button so you can post it along with your picture next week. I can't wait to see what YOUR world looks like.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wednesday's Wickedly Awesome-Crafty Tammie

Before I get into my blog feature for this week, I wanted to make sure that all those who've gone before . . . get their due.

Soooooooo, if you've been featured on Wednesday's Wickedly Awesome or are in the future, please make sure to pick up your bling.

 Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy!

And now on with the show:

Crafty Tammie

What first grabbed my attention about Tammie's blog was her "About Me" introduction which is over on her sidebar.  She openly admits that the fact that her entries are all in lower case letters is because she's typing while she's entertaining her kids.  Most of us crafty mommies don't like to admit it (really I think it's because were all afraid that DYFS is going to come knocking on our doors)  but you know even if your blog's name is something akin to Nap Time, After Hours, Quiet Moments ect., ect., ect. deep down you know that we're stealing some moments here and there while the kids are awake.  Destroying rearranging some part of the house. 

So not only does her sense of humor amuse me but then there's the crafting.  Here's just a bit of what's caught my eye.

I'm loving this Retro Baby Blanket for which Tammy has provided a tutorial. 

This adorably, useful Web Swinging Spider man Tote

A Lego Block Cake.

And some of the most adorable patchwork notebooks.  Most of which I'd like to own.  I'm in luck too because she's got an Etsy Store.  It's on hold for custom orders right now because this amazing women just popped out her fourth little bundle of joy, but you better believe I'll be one of the first knocking down her Etsy door asking for one.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Sunshine on My Shoulders . . . Makes Me Happy!

John Denver too!

quilted pillow

Friday was a beautiful day here and I'm sad to say it was probably the last sunshine we'll see in many, many months. October and November tend to be overcast and rainy and then the long, dark, snowy months begin.

I'm not telling you all this to depress you. Just giving you some background for my quilty endeavor this weekend. I think I was working to capture that beautiful sunshine.

I love the way this pillow turned out.  I think I'll start on a "Moody Blues" version for the bedroom. 
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to put some John Denver on my I-Pod.

Linkin' Up to the Following Parties:



Friday, September 24, 2010

Printable Fabric Subway Art Shirts

When I saw this shirt: over at The Mother Huddle  last week, I knew I had to make them for the boys.  Click here to see Desrti's tutorial.  I thought it was such a great idea for boosting C's self-confidence.

I've also been dying to try Crafterhours' Print Your Own Fabric technique. If you haven't seen this yet, get on over because it is the perfect money saving, stash busting idea.

Put these two amazing ideas together and what do you get?

Subway Art Shirt

The "Good Boy Shirt".  So deemed by my four year old.  I am thrilled that he is so excited about it, especially because the only acceptable shirt these days is one with superheros all over it. 

Subway Art Shirt

After initially following along the usual black and white, Subway Art bandwagon, I thought I'd go for a bit more color.

C is one proud boy showing off his positive traits.  And his favorite word?  LOVED.
Subway Art Shirt

Pin It

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Around the World This Thursday

Chalk Cliffs, Rugen Island

I was talking with my hubs the other night and discussing how much we both like to travel. It's one of those things that keeps the fire burning, ya know? Visiting new places and getting to know the local customs and traditions is thrilling. The travel thing has become exponentially more difficult with the addition of each child and while we are fully aware of how draining this can sometimes be, we are both dedicated to making it work because really, it's one of the things that makes living overseas worth the long distances away from our friends and family in the States.

Along those same lines we both agreed that we've not seen enough of our own country and it got me thinking that a Linky Party dedicated to photos or your travels or home towns would be so much fun.

Alas, inLinkz , the host of all those great Linky parties we attend, is not currently accepting registrations . . . so we'll have to wait for now. 

Baltic Sea, Rugen Island

For now, I'll make Thursday my day to share a photo or two of our travels with you all. 

Farm Country, Rugen Island

If you'd like to follow along for now and post a picture on your blog and link up to my post, we could make it work that way.  If there seems to be enough interest, I'll even make a bloggy button for it (I'm gettin' pretty good at these.  Did you see the new "Featured" button on my side bar this week?  Go ahead and grab one if you've been featured on Wednesday's Wickedly Awesome.)

I'd sure like to get to know more of the good old US of A.  It's a great country and I'm so glad I've been lucky enough to have be born and raised there. 

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I-Spy Place Mat Tutorial

i spy place mat tutorial

The boys and I had such a good time playing I-Spy while I cooked dinner last night.  They could sit at the table, munch on raw veggies (yes, I'm aware that I have abnormal children who like veggies.  Don't get too jealous though.  They will only eat them raw.) and find the objects I described.  Here's how to make a set of your own.

Material For Set of 6:

4 inch squares of novelty fabrics (at least 72, but more if you want more variety in your prints)
12  (1 1/2 X 14) in. strips of solid fabric for border
12 (1 1/2 X 12) in. strips of same solid fabric border
6  12  X 14 in. rectangles of quilt batting
6 12 X 14 in. rectangles of the same solid fabric as used for the border
coordinating thread
rotary cutter and cutting mat

Step 1:

Cut each square into two triangles.  I used a quilter's triangle to cut along each squares triangle but you could also use the bias lines on your cutting mat.

Step 2: 

Lay out and arrange triangles into pleasing squares.  You will need three rows of four squares. Play around until you are happy with the layout and color patterns.  I wanted the boys to be able to play I-Spy using letter cues as well (I-Spy something that begins with . . .) so tried to make sure that each place mat had about 24 different letter pictures.

Step 3:

Once you are happy with each place mat layout,

Line up the edges of two triangles and sew using a 1/4 in. seam. 

Once you've sew all of your triangles back together, press each seam open.  This will aid your place mats into laying flat.  I can't stress how important this step is.  I personally abhor this step, but it is so necessary!

Now step back and admire your hard work.  Impressive, isn't it?  Now pat yourself on the back and get back to work.

Step 4:

Now sew your squares together with a 1/4 inch seam. 

Double check before sewing to make sure that your fabric's orientation is correct. 

Step 5:

Then sew into rows of four.

If you want a more "patchy" look, make sure to line up your seams to match.

Again, press your seams open.

Step 6:

Once you have three rows together and each seam has been pressed open, you can now sew these three together to assemble the middle of each place mat.

And . . . press those seams open.

Step 7:

Sew your border fabrics onto each "middle" starting with the long sides of each rectangle and press seams open.

Step 8:

Pin each place mat "top" to a piece of quilt batting.  Then starting with the middle diagonal, follow the diagonal lines of each square to stitch the ditch of each seam.  Make sure to stop sewing BEFORE you come to the border fabric.  And do the same along each horizontal line. 

Step 9:

Remove pins, place the right side of the now quilted top together with the right side of the backing fabric.  Pin the edges and stitch around the perimeter, leaving a small opening to turn right side out. 

Finally, stitch up the opening using a whip or ladder stitch and press each place mat. 

Place on your table and have fun playing dinner time I-Spy!


Tuesday Blog Hop

I came across a fun idea this week.  Chubby Cheeks Thinks is mainly a product review and giveaway blog but on Tuesday's, Kim gives her bloggy followers a chance to make some new bloggy friends.

I'll be hopping around blogland this week with the help of this blog hop to see if I can't find some more boy themed projects to feature on Wednesday's Wickedly Awesome. 

And remember, if you've got something you'd like featured, feel free to e-mail or post a comment so I can take a look. 

Monday, September 20, 2010

I-Spy Place Mat Tutorial

When I signed on with Care, from Obsessively Stitching, for I-Spy swap THREE, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with all of those wonderful squares.  I just knew I wanted to be a part of this crafty phenomenon.

i spy place mat tutorial

Yes, yes, I know. The I-Spy swap is famous for it's fabulously fun and colorful quilts but if you've been following this blog for long (which is amazing in itself because I'm such a newbie) you know that I have two, (okay, three if you count the one I started in High school and still haven't finished) quilting projects already in progress. And one planned that needs to be completed before Christmas.

So I thought, why not make I-spy place mats. Which actually, in the end, probably took much longer to make than a simple patchwork quilt.  But they sure were fun!  And I still have enough squares left to make a quilt as well.

I made a set of six because you never know when you'll have a friendly dinner guest.  I have a tutorial in the works so check back in a few days.

It will be so much fun to have my kids play I-spy while waiting for dinner to be cooked. Because they are really good at this (insert sarcastic voice here).  Waiting for dinner, that is. 



Thursday, September 16, 2010

Gim'me, Gim'me!

Which happens to be the first sign S has learned in the last 6 months of learning.  Or rather, the first sign he's willingly showed us.  But how does this apply to crafting, you may ask . . .

I just realized the other day that I totally flaked passed over 100 posts without a celebration of sorts.  And I may be relatively new to the posting realm, but I realize that 100 posts is a big deal.  I'm going to use the "new baby" card here.  I've been a bit out of it lately (like for the last 4 years of my new mommy life).

And then I realized that my "one year of blogging" anniversary is quickly approaching in December.  And since this is a virtual miracle, we MUST celebrate. 

AAAAAAND since it would be way too cool to make it there some day, I'd love to celebrate reaching 100 followers.

SOOOOOOOOOOO, I'm working on a few things to giveaway!  A belated "100 posts" giveaway.  We'll have to call this the ""giveaway.  Maybe a truck pillow?

A big one for the "one year anniversary" post.  Maybe a Heather Bailey quilt?

And one for reaching 100 followers.  That may one require more thought.  I've got a few ideas running around in my head, but since the crafty gifts will  be going to some of YOU, what themes/crafty gifts would you be excited to win?  Would you be more interested in something for the boy in your life or something girly for yourself?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Wednesday's Wickedly Awesome-Fowl Single File

I seriously am obsessed with Fowl Single File. Like almost stalker status obsessed. I don't think I've seen a single thing Megan's done and not thought, "Man is that one talented lady!"

Counting Sheep Bean Bags

Maybe its the sheep thing. I just find all things sheepy in the realm of adorable. Okay so maybe not so much when my Aunt Kathy (totally the coolest lady I know.  Retired teacher who runs her own sheep farm) blogs about helping her sheep give birth (Potosi Sheep Farm Blog), but pretty much all else.

What can I say folks?  Just A-dorable.  Aunt Kathy, if I can pin down enough buttons--there's one of the above on the way to your house.  I mean, a girl who raises sheep should have something this adorable to hang on the wall.

Back to the amazingness of Megan . . .

Printable Stroller Scavenger Hunts, people.  How ingenious is that?  I have one waiting to go.  That is, if it ever stops raining over here.

And what more needs to be said about a jellyfish pinata.  She's got some seriously fabulous party ideas going on.  I'm talking FAB-ulous.  Bananas.  No, seriously.  She's got ideas for a banana themed party.  I think I'd curl up in a hole and cry if one of my kids asked for a banana themed party, but boy does she make it work.  You've got to go check out the banana shaped invitations and everything else too for that matter.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Removable Vinyl Label Pockets

vinyl drawer labels

We've been in desperate need of organization in this house.  I believe I'm the luckiest.  Not only do I have a babysitter who comes to watch S during my language classes, but even more  so because she is willing to fold clean laundry.  I can't tell you how helpful I find this--really--otherwise we'd just get dressed out of the dryer each day.  She even attempted to put the children's clothing away, in drawers.  Imagine that.  Sadly, this attempt was thwarted by the lack of time and energy I have had to organize, and then reorganize, the clothing drawers after each of C's bedroom moves.

I spent hours looking around for some nifty vinyl labels for the clothing drawers only to be left in awe of the fact that what I wanted wasn't out there.  Then I researched to find out how to go about making the vinyl labels myself.  What I found was that it was going to be outrageously expensive for me to make my own, customized labels. 

Then I remembered all of the blog posts I've seen for fabric wall decals using interfacing as the "sticker" part and thought I'd give the technique a go to make removable vinyl pockets.

Clothing Drawer Labels

I'm pretty happy with how they've turned out.  The second grid in the PDF is for girls.

C was really excited this morning to a) have his own clothing in his own bedroom drawers and b) not have to guess where each category of clothing was found. 

The best part for this momma?  C can get dressed all by himself.  No need for me to remind him where to look and that's a huge boost of confidence for him each and everytime.

Linking up to these great parties: