Dec 21, 2011

Baby gifts!

My littlest niece is turning One in a few weeks, and I was having a hard time trying to decide just what I would make her! For Christmas, I made her a Bella Bunny:

(The first ever Bella Bunny was for her big sister!)

I have been making so many things for Christmas, not to mention having non stop contractions for days (weeks, really) and getting ready for this baby to arrive any day, plus Kade's birthday was a couple weeks ago, and I have more family members and friends with birthdays within the next couple weeks as well. My brain is a little fried! Running on empty! But then I saw this really cute project in one of Addi's mom's Pinterest boards, and I thought it would be the perfect gift! Thank goodness for all these ideas and tutorials all over the internet, they save me from having to think of stuff for myself all the time!

It's called a Modular Star, and I think babies/toddlers would *love* it because it's very easy to grab on to, soft, and colorful! The hardest part was choosing the fabrics. I ended up using 30 different prints, and cut 2 triangles (I used a cardboard template and my rotary cutter) from each print. This project is perfect for all those little scraps!!! Here are all 60 of my triangles, ready for the next step:

I can't wait to see what it looks like when it's done! I may have to make one for my baby too, although that can wait a little while. And there are still a few Christmas projects that I'm rushing to finish in time. I think it will be pretty quick to come together though, I'm so excited!

Dec 8, 2011

Last five Sock Monkey Ornaments!

I am all out of this fabric now, and it's out of print. I'm hoping to find more somewhere, but until then, these are the last five sock monkey ornaments! These ornaments are perfectly puffy, bright and cheery, and are great for little kids too! They are in the shop. There's still time to order before Christmas! :)

Dec 1, 2011

Let the countdown begin!

It's December 1st, the beginning of a month we have been waiting for, for a long time! Kade told me last night that this December was going to be the best ever.

He woke up this morning and remembered to say "Bunny Bunny" first thing. I don't know what the story behind that is, but Kade said his teacher told him doing that will give him good luck for the whole month. This is the first month where he actually remembered to say it at the right time, so he is convinced it will work.

Kade's 8th birthday is tomorrow. It's also popcorn day and crazy hair day at school, which makes it even more fun! Jeremy and I will bring birthday treats to school in the afternoon. Kade gets to choose where we'll have dinner, and he's very excited for presents and cake, and a family birthday party on Sunday!

His wish of becoming a big brother will also come true this month. As long as baby isn't too overdue, he'll be born within the next few weeks!

Kade also loves it when we get out the Advent Calendar on December 1st! I made this one last year:

Each little matchbox compartment holds a small chocolate. I'm also doing something new this year to go along with the Advent Calendar. I got a bunch of Christmas books from around the house, the thrift store, and the used book store, and wrapped them all individually, labeling them from 1-24. Kade will get to unwrap the book that corresponds with the number (the date) on the Advent Calendar, and we'll read the book before bed. I love Christmas books!

One last good thing (well definitely not the last, but the last one I'll mention right now!) about December is that Kade got through the entire month of November without getting a fever! That may not seem like such a big deal, but for Kade and his medical issues, it's huge!! It's been months...and months... since he's gone so long without getting a fever. He is so happy and proud of himself for staying healthy. I hope we can keep it going throughout the rest of the year!

Nov 22, 2011

Getting ready for baby!

I still have almost 6 weeks to go before I'm 40 weeks, but I just have this feeling baby might decide to arrive a little sooner. Maybe that's just wishful thinking, but that feeling sure helps me get motivated to finish up getting ready!

Here is my 32 week baby belly. Pregnancy might beat me up, make me tired, make my hips hurt so bad that at times I can't walk, and keep me up at night, but I wouldn't change it for the world! This is what I've been praying for, for years and years, and I'd go through anything for this baby! I LOVE being pregnant, feeling my little baby roll around, kick me, get the hiccups, and stretch. I love how my huge baby belly looks (that will probably change after I have him, lets just be honest! lol), I love how my son and my husband give my belly love and hugs and talk to baby. But I can't wait until this is over, and I'm holding my baby in my arms! :)

This little felt garland is one of the things I made in the past few days. It was pretty simple, *here* are some easy instructions if you'd like to make one too. After making this, I am especially glad that we chose a name with only four letters! I used some invisible thread to hang this, so it appears to be floating. I also cut out some little felt stars that match the mobile that I made.

The star mobile is inspired by *this* pin. My mom and dad had some branches in their yard from a storm, and we found the perfect one for this project! I used the free die-cut machine at Ben Franklin to cut a bunch of stars from glittery card stock. Invisible thread is sandwiched in between the stars, glued together with tacky glue.

Here it is from what will be baby's view :)

And here is baby's little space, all ready for him! Until we move into our new house next spring, he has to share our room. I bought the hanging organizer from Amazon for $14, and it holds burp rags, socks, onesies, jammies, lotions, diapers, wipes, and all that good stuff. The rest of baby's clothes, blankets, toys, etc. are in a dresser in Kade's room.

The funny green stuffed animal with the blue mohawk on the shelf is from Build A Bear Workshop. Kade made it for baby, and there is a sound recording in his paw of Kade saying, "I love you baby brother!" It's adorable :)

The baby owl print is from Pseudooctopus. I found the breathable bumper at the thrift store, brand new for $3. My mom made the beautiful rag quilt hanging on the cradle. My sister and brother-in-law gave us the travel bed that we're using as a changing station. The little stars sleeper hanging below the shelf will be what baby wears home from the hospital.

Isn't there a song or something that says, "nobody puts baby in the corner"? I don't know what it's from. WE put baby in a corner, and a mighty cute one at that! It will be fun to decorate a whole bedroom for baby in a few months, but until then, I'm happy with this! Now I just need to pack some bags, and we'll be all ready for baby to come! Now that this is checked off my list, I better get to work on the other dozens of projects!

Nov 20, 2011

New item in the shop!

(No pictures of the maternity tops I made yet, sorry! Soon!)

Lately, I have been rather obsessed with all things miniature. Maybe it's all the tiny newborn size clothes I've been washing, folding, and putting away... especially the socks!! Everything is cute when it's teeny tiny, don't you agree?

A few years ago, I made my sister a miniature owl with a tiny clear pocket on the back for a photo. It has a ribbon from the top and hangs from her rear view mirror in her car. I've been wanting to make more for a while, but I didn't want them to be more versatile, so I finally decided to add strong magnets in the back instead! Now they can stick onto anything metal!

All the pieces cut out and ready to be sewn:

14 mini owls! I like how they're all looking in different directions. Kade thinks it looks like they're wearing glasses. Spectacled Owls, how adorable!

This is how big they are. A mere 2 inches wide by about 2.5 inches high! And the magnets are inside them, so they can't fall off and become a hazard for little kiddos. They are super strong, too!

All packaged and ready to go spread some owl love around the world! :)
Check them out *here*!

Nov 10, 2011

Sweater refashion - clothes for boys

I should be cleaning my house, but the baby in my tummy is telling me that I should eat peanut butter and honey sandwiches, drink berry smoothies, and blog, instead. Well, maybe not the blogging, but I am definitely craving the food! And why not blog while I'm eating? I love multitasking!

I have had this big old sweater in my cut-up-and-make-something bin for a long time. I was thinking pillow cover? Stuffed animal? Hat? Not until I saw *this post* at Made did the obvious finally hit me- just make a smaller sweater! So that's just what I did. I followed Dana's great instructions, and in about an hour, Kade had a brand new sweater!

The before:
This sweater was a size XL, and in great condition. Kade thought it was just fun to wear it around like this, making faces and pretending he has really short arms.

The after:
It fits! I used a long sleeved shirt as the pattern, cutting just a bit larger since I wanted a somewhat baggy, comfy fit. Kade loves it, but he thinks it's itchy. I'll just have him wear a t-shirt underneath.

As always, Kade must turn a simple request for one shot into a full photo shoot! There ended up being about 30 poses before I finally told him that I thought I might have enough pictures to choose from. I couldn't help but make this little collage with some of the best.

I have really been enjoying trying to make more of our clothes lately. I haven't made Kade anything else yet besides some freezer paper stenciled shirts, and enlarging some neck holes on some favorite shirts (he has a big head!), but I have some things planned! Yesterday I made 5 maternity shirts for myself out of some t-shirts, skirts, and other fabric that I had in my stash. I'll share those soon!

Oct 30, 2011

This Halloween cake will make you..... queasy?

Every year, Kade's school has a cake decorating contest. The finished cakes are awarded as prizes for the Cake Walk activity at the Fall Festival.

This year, Kade is definitely into gross things, so he thought this idea for a cake would be utterly disgusting... in other words, perfect!

Mr. Kade and his cake, Sick Pumpkin.

Gramma is a genius with cakes, so she helped Kade with this project. This is the second year in a row, and it's one of Kade's favorite traditions! She came over with all the goodies and they got to work.

(This is one of his go-to faces to make for pictures...)

Cake Details:
Pumpkin- Chocolate cake covered with handmade fondant. Kade designed the face and helped attach it.
Barf- (Some emails between my mom and me were really funny - "Oh, we should mix in some coconut and marshmallows to give the barf some chunkiness and texture!" - if anybody was spying on my emails, they should be a little grossed out and confused by now!) Vanilla cake tinted green. My mom used a knife to shape the cake into a wavy, bumpy design. The frosting does have coconut, marshmallows, and even little chunks of chocolate in it. Kade then added gummy worms, jelly beans, chocolate eyeballs, candy corn, and some other bits of candy around the top and sides.
Extras- The crow on top of the pumpkin is saying, "That's what happens when you eat too much Trick Or Treat Candy..." and the two spiders are saying, "Eww!" and "Gross!". The tree is a group of branches spray painted black with a little sparkle added. I cut out little black bats and hung them from strings. Little decorative fall leaves were glued here and there, with a few glued on to the cake board as well. We made a tiny ghost to live in the tree, and a spider on a web.

Kade and his Gramma had a great time, and he was so proud of his icky-looking (but delicious!! We had some of the leftover cake and icing, and it was so yummy!) creation! Hopefully whoever won this cake at the Cake Walk wasn't too afraid to eat it... haha ;)

Jun 19, 2011

It's been a copycat kind of weekend!

Kade has a fever again (I hope he'll be well enough to go to at least one of his last 3 days of school!), so I've had some down time these past few days. I'm sure lots of you have heard of Pinterest already. I've recently become somewhat addicted to it, and decided to make use of some of the ideas I've saved!

This first one is something I've seen all over the web,
but here is the Pin:
Crayon Monogram

And here is my version:

I found these really great shadowbox frames at Ben Franklin for only $5. I decided to add some little froggies, because Kade said his teacher loves them. I hope she likes it! She really is one very special teacher, and Kade will miss being in her class!

The second one is a series of week-by-week pregnancy photos:
Belly Pics

When I was pregnant with Kade, 8 years ago, I didn't do anything like this, and wish I had! I do have a few pregnancy photos from then, but I just love how you can really see the change happening in this series, using the same background and outfit each week. Here is my take on it, using Kade's little chalkboard to keep track of the weeks:

If only I were as cute as the other girl! Also, my picture shocked me- I think I look way bigger than 12 weeks already! Oh well, no matter how I look, I'm just SO happy that I have this little baby growing in me, I feel like the luckiest girl in the world! :)

The internet can be a great source of inspiration! What have you been inspired by lately?

Jun 1, 2011

Custom Star Wars Laptop Bag

My sister just got a new laptop, and requested a special custom bag to tote it around in! She, like many others in my family, loves Star Wars, and wanted her new laptop bag to reflect that. On the front flap is the Rebel symbol in red:

And on the inside of the flap when you lift it up is a while Imperial symbol:

I got to try out my sewing machines applique feature, which I hadn't used much yet. It was surprisingly easy! I used HeatnBond on the back of my fabric, traced the image (which I printed and cut out), cut it out again, removed the backing, and ironed it onto the black canvas. The stitching didn't take very long, but there were a lot of corners to turn on the white symbol! I really like how it turned out, and how professional the appliques look! It's the HeatnBond, I love that stuff!

The flap closes with two small velcro tabs. The bag is padded with batting, and lined with black fleece. The strap is adjustable. There is a quilted pocket on the inside for all the cords.

Next up on the bag list- a purse that looks like an owl, for my niece! I am in the middle of designing it now, trying to figure out the best and cutest way to make it. I may want one for myself, too! :)

Apr 20, 2011

Finally finished, only 3 years late!

Three years ago, Kade asked me for a sock lion for his birthday. That was his favorite animal at the time, and his favorite color was yellow. I bought some cute yellow socks, cut and sewed them up, and set them in my bin full of projects I needed to finish. And there they stayed, getting covered up with more and more unfinished projects.

Kade asked me about his sock lion the other day, and I immediately felt so guilty! I've made close to a hundred sock creatures in the last three years, plus countless other stuffed animals and other things. But I forgot about his little sock lion. I can't believe Kade didn't forget about it too, since it's been so long!

In a way, I'm glad I made this lion now instead of three years ago. I don't think it would have turned out looking anything like a lion back then, when I was just getting the hang of sock monkeys! I'm pretty happy with how it turned out. It took hours to hand tie each hair of his mane to his head, but it was worth it!

Now, three years later, Kade's favorite animals are turtles. His favorite color is "all the colors but pink!". But I think he will still love his finished sock lion that I will give him as part of his Easter basket. Better late than never, right?

Still to do in my huge pile of halfway done projects-
~King size jean quilt
~Three sock monkeys
~Owl purse
~Two fabric first name puzzles
~A few pairs of baby booties
~A summer shirt for me
~A wallet for Jer more! Am I the only one who has this problem? It's a personal goal of mine to start finishing all the things I've started, to make way for new things. I *love* getting something done and checking it off my mental list. I'm not going to procrastinate any more. This yellow lion is the first of many, and I'm so excited to move on to the next!!

***Just thought I would add the link to the tutorial I used, years ago, to learn how to make sock monkeys! They are easy, and with just the basic sock monkey form you can also make lions like mine, cats, dogs, bunnies, monsters, and lots of other things! There are also lots of other sock creature tutorials out there if you just search for them. I highly recommend it, they are so fun to make!***

Apr 13, 2011

Raja the Literacy Cat

Kade had a very captive little audience for his daily reading yesterday! Raja the cat just climbed up and made himself comfy.

Reading to the cat was the most fun he's had reading in a long time! Kade will read if I tell him to, but never choses to read for fun. Long books intimidate him, although he is a pretty good reader (at or slightly above his age level for this time of the school year). This book took him about 25 minutes to read, and he never once asked me if he could take a break.

I've heard of therapy dogs that are taken into school for children to read to. It helps to improve their literacy skills.

After seeing this, I believe animals really can be great reading companions! Kade was definitely more excited about reading to a cat than he ever has been about reading to me! I'm putting that on my mental list of good reasons to get our own cat when we move next year!

(note- Raja is not an actual trained therapy animal. He's just our friend's sweet pet. Well, sweet unless he's trying to steal cheese, in which case he's downright obnoxious! But we love him!)

Apr 8, 2011

A Herd of Snugglesauruses

I recently made some new dinos for the shop! They are similar to an item I used to make, but these are even better... they have an improved design, stand up by themselves, and have two rows of adorable ruffles down their back! Just the right size for babies, and super cute too! There are seven different fabrics I used for the ruffles, here is a sampling:

And here is the whole herd lined up for a group photo:

Fun stuff :)

Apr 5, 2011

Star Wars Theme 30th Birthday Cupcakes

Jer turned the big three-oh last month, and to celebrate, I threw him a Star Wars themed bash. While he and a bunch of our friends were out racing go-karts at Traxx, I was at home, helping to prepare this tasty spread, made by my mom!

I got him a new barbecue (that my dad and friend Raelene were racing to put together in 2 hours before Jer got back!) so I planned for burgers, steaks, and hot dogs. I made a huge yummy pasta salad, and had lots of chips and dips choices. My mom made Carbonite Jello, complete with Han Solo, three different kinds of cupcakes, and a Death Star watermelon! Here are some close-ups of her amazing work:

"Cheesecake baked in almond-flavored cupcakes with cherry filling, topped with edible stars from a Galaxy Far, Far Away":

"I am your reeses filled chocolate cupcake with chocolate butter cream frosting topped with edible Vader and Light Sabers":

"Pumpkin Pie filled cupcake with chai butter cream frosting topped with a white chocolate Yoda I am, yesssss, hmmmmm":

And by pumpkin pie filled, she means exactly that- there is a real, homemade mini pumpkin pie inside each cupcake!! YUM!!

I can't decide which one was my favorite... they were all super delicious, and so creative!

This watermelon was carved with stamp carving tools, to look like the Death Star. We had a lot of fun the next day destroying that Death Star and eating it!! :)

I am so thankful for my mom and her help in making Jer's birthday very memorable! Everybody was in awe of the cupcakes, and luckily there were enough to try one of each!

If you'd like to check out some of my mom's other Star Wars cakes that she has made for Jer, here are some links for you!

~Death Star Cake
~Light Saber Cake