Tuesday, May 29, 2012

DIY matching game

*apologies for the quality of pictures. sometimes it's just easier to take them with your phone than the actual camera!

So I had this grand idea to make a matching game that was magnetic (you know, so the pieces could be played with in one's lap if a hard surface wasn't available... say church...), but the laminator didn't like such thick pieces going through it. So we're just sticking to the old fashioned way of playing! 

The yellow drawstring was the wrapping of a gift giving to us from my S.I.L and served as the template for the second bag I made. 
Why two you say? 
Because I made two sets of matching games. 
Ah. Yes. Of course.

 Can you see the magnets? haha, oh well!
I used old scrapbook paper for the pieces 
(because once upon a time, I thought I was going to be this huge scrapbooker 
and creative a massive book of my college memories... freshmen year
Hey, I had a lot of memories for only two semesters time!)

I digress.

I also used my handy dandy circle puncher to make the whole process go smoother. 
Much better than tracing out circles and then hand-cutting them, right? 

I always joke that I am going to make all the toys my kids could ever NEED and we will save the money spent on those noise makers people seem to love to buy for their kids at the store on other things like diapers... I am not a huge fan of toys that make a ton of electronic sound... maybe a few here and there are ok... I'd rather my kids be making their own music or listen to a children's CD than hear the repeat button pressed every 5 seconds on a toy (before that toy is even done singing it's tune nonetheless!) 

And maybe I won't even care once baby comes one day. But... I doubt it.

DIY Magnetic Paper Dolls

Once I have babies, maybe I'll actually do a "Magnetic Me" tin box, but for now, I loved the design of these sweet vintage paper dolls. I only magnetized two but I have a folder of four other dolls that came from the kit I used. I used Little Kiddles Paper Dolls but that whole site has links to MANY types of paper dolls. All adorable and all FREE.

I originally bought tin containers from Michaels (two since they weren't big enough to fit both dolls) for $1.99 each. Not bad. But then I ventured into Goodwill about 3 days later to find this gem for 99 cents:
Without hesitation, I got this one and returned the other two. It counts to save money where ever and whenever you can!
I placed a piece of felt at the bottom of the container to keep the clothing from sticking to the bottom, making it easier for those little hands to grab as they dress the little miss and little man. And as you can see, plenty of room to add a doll or two more in that container!

DIY Flip Book

Credit given to Artsy Fartsy Mama for this project. Hers was sewn on fabric and colored in. It's pretty. 
I did the short-cut version. Color and Laminate.
I was able to replicate her drawings (well some at least). Others I had to use my own creativity.

Laminators are my new favorite. They scare me though... I always have close calls each time I use it!
But I love that it protects the pages from little toddlers who will get their hands on it. Makes me want to redo my magnetic paper doll project... I'll let that one mull over in the brain a little bit :)
Now... go create!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

DIY Cake Plate(s)

I love cake plates. I see them at HomeGoods and think, "Oh, I have to have that!" Luckily, I have this habit of walking around the entire store holding the one thing I picked up... You know, to let it marinate in the brain a little bit before heading to the front of the store. I almost ALWAYs end up putting that object back on the shelf.


I was at Walmart today and found these candle stands. I immediately thought "ooooh, cake plate!"

It's true.

So I bought 1, 2, 3, 4 of 'em! I was only going to make two cake plates and use the others for actual candles when I walked into HomeGoods to find two plates and...

ended up finding 4 plates! They were just so pretty and lovely and sooooo Ashley.

Next stop. Michael's to find that super duper strong glue. I found the tube, whipped out my phone with the Michael's app coupon pulled up and got it for a discount (around $2). Score.

Deciding which plate to go on which candle stand took 5 minutes because of the varying heights of the candle holders. The whole which plate looks best with which height dilemma. Typical right?

 Next, get the glue ready.

Clean off plates and candle holders. Turn plates upside down. Apply thin strip of glue along the edges of the candle holder and press into the center of the plate. I went along the edges in various spots where the candle and plate met to give it extra support. Let sit for 24-72 hours before using.


Daring, are we?
I've seen people do this project for VERY little money (we're talking Dollar Store ball court). Meaning, they will have the smaller, candle holders that fit the tall single candles (ya feel me?) and buy plates from the Dollar store. TOTALLY awesome, but... I loved these candle holders from Walmart because they seemed more sturdy and I liked the design. I also wanted really adorable, cute plates which I knew HomeGoods had for around $2.99-$3.99 per.

Whole project was under $30. And we all know cake plates can go for almost $15-20 per, especially if they are big ones like the two big plated ones I have. Each of my cake plates would come to about $7 each. I just love mine! And the colors go perfectly with my color scheme in my humble abode :) Now, I know that if I ever want a cake plate... I will ALWAYS remember I could make one for a fraction of the price. Hmmm.. blessing or curse? haha

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


We have now put in our third offer on a home here in Folsom. After months of looking, it really puts things in perspective. What is important to us? Location is becoming the number one on our list above all else. We love Folsom. We're close by friends and more importantly, family. It's familiar, it's filled with young families, its embedded with wonderful trails throughout... it's home.

We ventured out into Lincoln. Which is like Folsom... but nicer. And really far away. Not to mention, you can get a heck of a lot more house for your money than Folsom could ever give you. Those new, 2000 sq ft homes were so tempting. Especially in an area that's new itself and clean and pretty. It even has trails! But... so far away from what is established here in Folsom.

This house is itty bitty but could be so cute for our first home and maybe rent out once we have outgrown it. I'm getting ahead of myself, but I want you to see our my thought process... It's on an adorable little court too.

Who knows! I don't get so attached any more (yeah, I know it sounds like I am but I'm not. Promise.). The longer you're in this game, the duller it makes your emotions. Good thing! I know it will be ok if we don't get it. Heck, I just cleaned the apartment like crazy this morning and know we could continue to be happy here as long as it takes... because everyone loves living in clean, organized, pretty apartments with maintenance men coming to fix whatever gets broken whenever... for free :) Like today with the dishwasher. Ha.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

He did it!

Max graduated on Saturday. We had a couple family members come into town to celebrate with us. It was fun visiting, going out to eat, playing doubles in tennis, more eating, more visiting... Max and the boys went to red hawk that night and all of them walked away richer. Phew!
Way to go, babe! I am so proud of you! (the college part, not the red hawk part... though that was some pretty good luck ;) )

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

It only took me two years..

I did it! I have the physical and rough drafts of my thesis's completed! TWO years just to get to this point. That is... if you don't count the previous 16 years of martial arts...
It feels so good. 
That June test date is looking more and more realistic :)
K. That's all I wanted to say.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Thursdays are the best.

I love today. Every week I love today. After class is over, I get the rest of the day to myself. Typically, I'll clean or run errands or go to the grocery store.. and you know what? I don't mind doing those things at all because it's MY day to do what I want...

...It's just better when I get to craft instead ;)

Which brings me to my next thought... anyone been to a craft fair? I think it would be kind of fun to go on a crafting spree and register for a booth at one of the events! Again... just a thought. It would be better if there was a friend to go in on it with me and our weekends would just be crafting and preparing for it! Every girl's dream, right?!

I just think it would be kind of awesome to earn some extra $ from the things I love to do the most.

Where was I?

Ah, yes. Thursday. Great day. I can smell the chili cooking in the crock pot. And it smells good.

TWO lbs ground beef
ONE 28 oz can of Rotel diced tomatoes with the green chili,
               undrained(to give kick for Max's taste buds)
TWO 14 oz cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
ONE 15 oz can tomato sauce
ONE chili seasoning mix (mcCormick's)

1. Brown the beef
2. While the beef is cooking, throw all the other ingredients in a crock pot
3. Add cooked beef to crock pot and cook on low 6 hours-ish. or high 4 hours-ish

I actually added 1/4 of finely diced red onion to add extra flavor like 10 min later, ha.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

DIY Baby Swing Seat Cover

I have no need to do this project. There's no baby in me yet. But... I love creating and recreating. This baby swing belonged to my sister and it made it through her 4 kids. Well, 3.5 since O didn't get to use it as much as the others! One day, we will have use of this swing and I probably won't have the time to sit down and sew it from start to finish in a day like I did this time!


1. Pick your fabrics. I used 3 quarter sized polka dot fabrics and 1 quarter size of the bird fabric.
2. Take the seat apart! Save for templates.
3. Match seat to fabric (fabric facing outwards of course); and pin

4. Sew the decorative parts of the seats first using the original sew lines on the underside of the cushion.
5. Then sew around the perimeter of each cushion
6. Sew cushions back together
7. Use the original flappy parts (above and below the cushions) as templates to cut out new ones with your new fabric. Sew to the top and bottom of the cushion
Why do photos make the polka dots look CRAZY?! My eyes are trippin! 
At this point, I decided to work on the little toy thinger mahjigger (I don't know what it's called so that will have to do)

7. Cut strips and sew together. Eye ball how wide you need them to be to fit around the toy thinger mahjigger
8. Iron the edges in.
9. Sew velcro to some ribbon to create the tabs. (P.S. I had Max choose the color of ribbon. Gotta make sure he knows his opinion matters to me! haha) Attach ribbon to your strips of fabric. Make sure it will be where you want on the toy thinger mahjigger. I used the old one as a template for how far apart.
10. I had to handsew the fabric around the toy thinger mahjigger because it wouldn't come apart for me. So sit and watch part of a movie for this :)

11. Cut more strips for the binding. Mine were 2 in wide I believe...
12. Iron one edge in about half an inch. The other side will just be directly sewn on with your machine
13. Pin the binding all around the seat
14. Sew the one edge of the binding all around the perimeter of the seat. About 1/2 in seam or so. You can test how big the seam should be by folding the binding over and making sure the edges match on either side.
15. After sewing one edge to the seat, fold the binding over to the back side and pin it down all around. That rhymed.
16. Hand sew all around the perimeter. Sit and watch the other part of the movie you started for this part. :)

I had to use my receiving blanket for my "pin cushion" because well... I left my REAL one all the way over by the... couch. And who has time to get up and get it when you're determined to get this project done!? Obviously, I did not have the time :)

17. Return back to the swing and try it on for size!
18. Put a baby doll (or your actual baby for all you moms out there) in it and marvel at your work.
19. Then get your mom and get praise :)
I even added a little receiving blanket I made the other day to it. I'm such a goober.
NEXT: I'm going to sew little plush toys for the top to complete the look. I'm excited.. :)