Thursday, July 31, 2008

I Can Not Believe It!

I totally just entered a design contest - and am so very nervous! I like the kit I made, but it is so different from all the others. The theme was "trendy", and I seriously feel like I was in a totally different Trendville from all the other contestants! Not that I don't like what I came up with, just that mine was inspired somewhat by altered art, and, well, theirs weren't. Ah well, it is what it is, and if you want my kit - or any of the others - check 'em out here! You do need to sign up for the newsletter to get the password to unzip the files, and you can do that here. There are tons of gorgeous kits, and some from some very well known designers, too! My kit is here - I would love some feedback on it :)

Gotta run for now - here's a quick couple of pictures of the outfit I made for Noah last week! He was mad that I was trying to take his picture, but once I showed him how silly he looked, he started smiling for me ;o) I appliqued a square of clear vinyl on the front, and put the plastic lizard in just before the last stitches were sewn.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Back from Nationals

That was one whirlwind trip! We left here at 6 am on Friday, and got to the St. Louis Science Center around 11. It was so crowded! There were some neat exhibits there, but the way the museum was laid out, it was really hard to get to them. We had a great time there, but poor Noah was just not having it. We left and drove to the hotel where the girls were tomeet up with their coach,then went to Qdoba for lunch. YUM!!! After meeting with Coach Kim, we went back to our room, and wound up making a run to Panera Bread and ate dinner in the room.

Saturday morning, we ate breakfast at the hotel, then headed out to the arena. I got some pictures of the girls hanging out outside, but the competition pictures were so severely blurry that I didn't keep them, with the exception of one. Our girls did a good job, but we didn't place this time. I think the judges did a very good job, and the places were awarded very fairly. I wasn't nearly as happy with the judges at our regional and state competitons, and Adron insisted that it's because I am biased. I knew that wasn't the case lol! After watching all the teams do their routines this weekend, I think that the winners *were* truly the best. I'm afraid our girls somehow thought they could just kick back and relax this summer and they would be fine at nationals. Ah well, one of those life lessons we all have to learn at some point!

Madeline looking cute - I made the "mickey ears" that she is wearing lol!

After the competition, we headed back home. We stopped at Lambert's for dinner, which was fabulous, but certainly not Core! Then we went home, 38 hours after we left. I hate short trips like that when there is really no time for fun. I was hoping to go to Six Flags, but that didn't happen :o( Maybe we'll get to go one day soon...

I'll be back later with pictures of an outfit I made for Noah last week - I've got to get lunch for the kiddos and head to the grocery store!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Finally, some pictures!

Well, Ellie was none too pleased with me for "making" her pose for pictures. No, she wasn't mad about me taking pictures of her, she was furious because I wouldn't let her get the mail! That is why she is giving me a frumpy look in the first picture - the 2nd was after we said hi to the mailman. I don't know what is going on with my camera,but the pics are looking really grainy and the color is off. I need to check the settings, preferrably *before* we go to the cheer competition this weekend!

Monday, Bootz came over and gave Noah a haircut. I felt so bad for him Saturday night at the football game. Within 5 minutes of being out there, his hair was wet! I almost feel like he's a shaggy dog lol! We gave him another mohawk - but this one actually qualifies as a mohawk, IMHO ;o) We LOVE it! Thank you, Stephanie!!!

Love the punk "snarl" he's got going on here!

Check out the curls! Aren't they sweet? LOL! I will be using a different product on his 'hawk - this was our first attempt and I used what had been working on his fauxhawk. Obviously, not the right choice...

I'm sewing today! Well, at least I think I am. I'm hoping to get the bows for nationals finished tonight. I only have to make 11, so it's not too bad at all. I can't wait to see 'em done - they are gonna be HUGE! LOL! If pompoms on pigtails and bad socks helped one team win, then I don't think big ol' sequin bows should hurt a thing! Don't get me wrong - the other team wasn't bad, I just don't like their choice of accessories ;o) Betcha they don't like ours, either!

Monday, July 21, 2008

It's been a couple of days

I figured after 4 days in a row, I had to take a little time off so I could look like a self-respecting slacker ROFLOL!

I finally finished Ellie's birthday dress!!!! Woohoo! She wore it to church yesterday, but I totally spaced on taking pictures. Meant to do that today, but it was too hot to do anything. I mean, at 10 am, it was over 100 degrees! Eek! That is just silly! Maybe I will get motivated to go out and do something fun with the kiddos tomorrow, as most everything is free on Tuesday afternoons. If so, I can dress her up and snap a couple pictures to share here.

On a cooking note - I made a few recipes this week that have been amazing! I have done up a couple of recipe cards for a chili recipe I made yesterday, and the Core-n Bread recipe I made to go with it. The chili was super easy to make, and everyone liked it! I got the chili going before I made the corn bread, as I figured that the extra cooking time would make the chili even better. I also used a little browning sauce on the turkey, and I managed to make myself think it tasted pretty beefy LOL! Here are the cards - I used Krystal Hartley's "True to Yourself" kit for both of these cards. Let me know if you try the recipes and like them - I modified the core-n bread recipe slightly. To see the original, click here.



Click on previews to download.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Just call me "Butter"...

Four days in a row! Wow, this is a total record for me lol! Of course, today is Angel's fault - she tagged me ;o) Thanks, girlie, you made my day!

So, here are 6 unimportant things about me...

1.) I love punk! I started listening to skater music when I was 13 (Suicidal Tendencies and Exploited), and now listen to all kinds of stuff, but punk is still my favorite. Blink 182 is one of my all-time favorite bands.

2.) Along the same lines, I love the rockabilly, psychopunk style, although I just can't figure out how to pull that look off. I am, however, plotting something along those lines to wear in the very near future....

3.) I am addicted to a few things. Gum, fabric, and digital scrapbooking. Not necessarily in that order though ;o)

4.) I am the VP of Membership for Madeline's school PTA, but I have only ever been to *2* PTA meetings my whole life! I went once when Audrey was in kindergarten or 1st grade, and then again the last meeting of this past school year. Mostly, I wasn't able to go because I was working evenings, and when I wasn't working, I homeschooled. This is my 1st year on the board.

5.) I totally hate having blue eyes! I have bought several different brands of brown contact lenses only to discover that my eyes are shaped oddly, and it looks really creepy with the color floating over part of my pupil...

6.) I'm not really a redhead. I swear I must have a dominant red hair gene (that just didn't show up), but my hair is naturally blonde. But since my skin is pasty white, and three of my four kids have red hair, everone assumes it's my natural color! LOL!

So there you have it. 6 totally insignificant things about me, yet they are so much of who I am! And in return, I am tagging

Stephanie (Bootz)

I'm working on a couple more recipe cards right now, and have a few of my favorite LOs that I am thinking about posting. Aw, shoot, I'll just go ahead and show you a couple of them! They aren't all brand new, but they are some of my very favorite LOs ever. Click on the LO to be taken to the credits.

I took this one of Ellie looking all grown up at the Children's Museum.

A Moment

Noah sure does love his sister! Actually, he likes to lie on all of us, and it cracks me up. He's a sweet little guy.

Brotherly Love

I'm particularly poroud of this one - I took this picture in my front yard this spring!


I just love this picture of Noah. I took it when he was pretty sick, and had lost 25% of his weight, which is why he looks so gaunt and has dark circles under his eyes. He looked so sweet and sad!

Sad Eyes

Audrey and Madeline were blowing bubbles, and they just seemed like they needed wings lol!

Did this one for a challenge, but I'm not sure if I like it or not...
Daddy's Little Man

I did this one for the same challenge as the one above - I like it better lol!

And here is a card I made for Adron for Valentine's Day :o)

That's enough for one day, I guess lol! I have a few more that I love and will put up eventually...

Monday, July 14, 2008

I'm being such a good little blogger this week lol!

I've retired my computer chair. I've decided that I don't get nearly enough exercise, so in order to make sitting more productive, less inviting, and more fun, I replaced my chair with a fitness ball! Adron was laughing at me last night for sitting here bouncing all night lol, but I was, pardon the pun, having a ball!

I made a Core chocolate cake last night, and it was divine! Not a light, fluffy cake, but it had a more muffin-like texture. I can totally see this made with all kinds of variations. Of course, since it's a keeper, I had to make a recipe card for it. I used pieces from DSO's Scrap Journal kit. Pink paper by Mel C, brown paper by Trivettes Designs, cream paper by Livia Y, ribbon by Mel C, book by Nikki Fabulous Designs, alpha by Livia Y, and the font is Tracy. I'm not sure who made the stitching, as the file was named "stitching.png" and had no TOU with it :( I hate it when that happens! Anyway, without further adieu, here it is!


Click on image to download

You know, I'm looking at the cards I've shared here, and it hit me that they all look about alike! Not that it is the end of the world, I suppose, but I'm going to have to look into a different layout for the next one lol! Ah well, at least I have changed up the colors and all LOL!

It's getting late, so I'm off to bed - I hope someone out there can benefit from this recipe!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Poor 'Wuh! (And a sewing tutorial, too)

I had the funniest realization the other day... I was trying to get Noah to say his name, and he just kept saying "Wuh", not "Noah". It finally hit me - poor little guy must think we are always fussing at him!!! "Hey, no Wuh!" "Come here no wuh" "Whatcha doing, no Wuh?" "Don't throw things, no Wuh." I bet he thinks that Ellie *never* gets into trouble! In retrospect, no matter how nice I think the name Noah is, it may not have been the best choice... LOL!

I thought I would post a tutorial for making a lined a-line jumper. I did this a while back, and it was on a sewing message board, but I figure someone might benefit from it being on my blog, too. I have it in PDF format, if anyone wants it - just let me know.

The pattern I’ve used for this is “Frannie” by Children’s Corner. This can also be applied to sheath-type dresses or a-line jumpers that do not fasten at the shoulders.

I was taught this method by Lezette Thomason of Children’s Corner in a class she held for my local chapter of SAGA (the Smocking Arts Guild of America). The pattern itself provides fairly good instructions for doing this, but I couldn’t wrap my head around it until Lezette showed it to me. I hope this helps someone – I wish you could all be as lucky as I am and live within a couple hundred miles of this amazing woman!!! Since I know that isn’t possible, I have done my best to try to lay it out clearly. If you have any questions, feel free to ask, and I will do my best to answer them for you.

Cut out pattern and trace all markings onto fabric. Sew shoulder seams of outer fabric and lining. Matching shoulder seams, and centers, pin lining to fabric, right sides together.

Sew around neckline, making sure shoulder seams on lining are even with the shoulder seams on the dress. This particular pattern has a back opening, as the neckline isn’t deep enough to go over the child’s head without it.

Trim and clip seam allowance, being sure to clip the curves so fabric will lay smoothly when turned right side out.

Turn dress right side out and press neckline well.

With dress lying flat in front of you, and right side of outer fabric facing up, bring left side of outer fabric over towards center. Then, take left side of lining fabric and bring it under, towards center. You will pull both the outer layer and the lining all the way across, sandwiching the right shoulder area between them.

This is what it should look like from the side:

Pin together, making sure that the shoulder seams match, and the other parts of the dress aren’t caught.

Being careful not to catch any extra fabric, sew the left side together, starting at one side, and continuing the length of the armhole.

Here it is, sewn from one edge to the shoulder seam. Here you can see the rest of the dress, bunched up in the tube being created by sewing the left armhole.

After sewing the left armhole, this is what you will have.

Clip the curves so seam allowances will lay flat when turned right side out, and press well.

To turn right side out, simply pull the fabric through the left shoulder. The entire dress will come through, and it will look something like this while you are doing it:

Repeat with right side, and press both armholes well. Cool, huh!

Now, you will press open the underarm seams, and matching front to back, sew the outer dress and the lining. You will do this on both sides, leaving an opening on one side large enough to comfortably accommodate your hand (6” is recommended by the instructions given by Children’s Corner).

The easiest way I have found to make this opening is to stitch up to the beginning of the opening, then backstitch to secure your stitches. Change to a long stitch length, and sew to the end of opening area. Switch back to regular stitch length, and backstitch to secure before finishing the seam. This enables you to press the entire seam open neatly and evenly, making it easier to sew closed when you are done.

Once you have sewn these seams and pressed them open, remove the basting threads from the opening.

Smooth the lining over the dress, with the opening facing you.

Reach through the opening, matching side seams, and pin lining to outer fabric at the hem, right sides together.

At this point, I like to stitch a few inches at one of the side seams so I don’t lose my bearings. Continue to pull the whole dress through the opening, and sew around the entire hemline, matching centers and seams.

It will look like a very confused fabric tunnel when you get done with this part! You will now press the hemline that you have just sewn.

The last step is to pull the dress back through the opening, and press again, making sure the fabric is even and there are no areas that are bunched up. Viola!

You now have a fully lined and/or reversible jumper that just needs a few stitches to close up the opening you used for turning the dress. Add a button and a loop to the back opening, and you are done!


If you are using the Frannie pattern, and putting the drawstrings in the sides, be sure to add buttonholes as called for by the pattern.

When using this method for a narrower (sheath) style, or a regular a-line jumper, you won’t have to worry about the casings and elastic or drawstrings. The Frannie pattern has a lot of extra fullness built into the sides and uses these to pull it in.

I personally find the ties to be quite a nuisance with toddlers and preschoolers, so I sew the casings as directed after finishing the hem, and insert elastic, sewing securely at front and back ends of the casing. I use approximately 4 ½” of 3/8” elastic on each side to give it a close, fairly stretchy fit. After inserting the elastic, I hand stitch the inner opening closed, and tack ribbon or a bias tube to the side seams over the casing to give it the look of a drawstring without the hassle.

I have used narrower elastic (1/4”, as called for by the pattern), and found that Ellie really likes to pull her arms into her dress and see how far she can stretch it! 3/8” - 1/2" elastic is much firmer, and has less give, so it’s not as tempting (or fun LOL!).

With the real drawstrings, the gathers weren’t nearly as nice and even, and Ellie would untie them and pull the sides out all the way, causing her to look like she was wearing a tent…!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Happy Birthday, Ellie!

Yeah, so I don't have her dress done, nor have I managed to take a really nice birthday picture of her, but she has made it to 4!

Today, she was being her usual cranky self, so I told her to take a nap. She totally freaked on me! I asked what her problem was, and you know what the answer was? Yep - "But I don't wanna miss my birthday!!!" ROFLMBO! She is too much! A little later, Adron was trying to talk her into taking a nap, and told her that she wouldn't miss her birthday. Her answer to that was "Well, I won't miss it if I don't take a nap." Oh yes, she is GOOD! The best part - guess where she is right now? ::evil grin::


I can't tell you how excited I am about the Core plan! This week, I was down 3.8 lbs.!!! Lemme tell you, it was so hard this week, too! When we went to my IL's on Friday, I took some Core coleslaw and some 1 point Whitewheat buns. I did eat some of the pork shoulder, but I only had one sandwich, and a very small serving of macaroni and cheese. The desserts just about killed me though! There was a homemade chocolate cake - I had a *tiny* little sliver of it. There was the Butterscotch 4-Layer Dessert (if you aren't familiar with that one, Google it! It is amazing!), and I only had a tiny sliver of that. Then there was the homemade strawberry cake. Oh wow! I can't begin to describe just how yummy and scrumptious that is!!! I had the same tiny sliver of that one, then I finished the rest of Ellie's, and what Noah didn't eat... Granted, it was more than I should have eaten, but all-in-all, I doubt if it was more than about a whole piece anyway. It was totally worth it, too! Then we went to Corky's for Ellie's birthday on Sunday. I was totally good and got the baked potato with shredded chicken. I didn't tell them to hold the butter or cheese, but I opted not to put the sour cream on. Adron and I were sharing the potato and an order of tamales, so I only had half of the potato, and 2 bites of a tamale. Plus their heavenly rolls (I didn't add butter to mine), and a piece of birthday cake. I wasn't perfect, but I did so much better than I've ever done before! It's all about baby steps, and I took a bunch this weekend!

Oh, my goal is to lose 50 lbs. before my brother's wedding, which looks like it will probably be around March of 2009. I know I can do it! I have to average about 1.5 lbs. a week, and this week was a great start. In the 2 weeks I've been doing the Core plan, I have lost 6.4 lbs. Not bad, huh! I'm not worried about being skinny for the wedding, I just know that I work better when I have a deadline.

I've just discovered the world of ATCs, and here is my 1st (digital) attempt. I am totally in love with the whole altered art style, but I have a hard time working that way. I'm not sure at all what my style is, but I don't think it's altered art at all, but I sure wish it was LOL! Later, I'll have to post a couple of LOs I have done in that style... I am trying to figure out where to get collage sheets so I can make some real ATCs, not just the digital variety. If anyone has any good links, please let me know!!!


Monday, July 7, 2008

Hey there!

We had a really great holiday weekend!

Friday, Ellie and Madeline were in a 4th of July parade, then we went to Adron's parent's house and spent the afternoon with them.  We had a great time - the kids swam, and we sat around talking lol!  The parade was the 1st one Ellie has been in, and she was stinkin' cute!  I was so proud of her - she was the tiniest one out there, and one of her coaches had to carry her for about 5 minutes, but she did a great job.  It seems that somewhere around the parade route, she started missing her mommy!  Poor little thing!    Here's a LO I did of the one picture I got - there were so many parents walking with the kids that I couldn't get any pictures.  I lucked out on this one, but it's pretty grainy.  Grrrrrr!  Ah well...


{Click picture for credits}

Saturday, we piddled around the house, and Adron started brewing some beer. Sunday, I went to church, then had to go get the littles from Adron, who was finishing up his beer brewing with some friends. We went over to my brother's house for a cookout celebrating his engagement to my awesome friend Boots, then we went out for Ellie's birthday dinner. Quite a busy weekend, to be sure, but it was so much fun!

I can't believe my little Ellie will be FOUR tomorrow! Ack! I guess I had better get upstairs and finish the dress I've been working on for a couple of months now lol!

Oh, I do have a recipe card, too! I nearly forgot lol! I have started doing Weight Watcher's Core plan, and am really liking it so far. I am determined to get this excess weight off for good! I want to be healthy so I can enjoy my kiddos ;o) Anyway, this one is for Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches. Not completely Core, but the Points are minimal, and they are SOOOOOOOO yummy! Oh, credits are here.


Download HERE