Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Paperback Book Pumpkin

These pumpkins were all over blogland last year and I thought they were so cute but didn't make any until this past weekend.  We rented The Avengers and since I had some time to kill I thought this would be the perfect project to work on.  For New Year's Eve last year we had a white elephant gift exchange.  My husband ended up with a box of books that included two trashy romance books that were a bit beat up.  As soon as I saw them I knew they'd be great for this project since neither one of us would read them.  I put them aside and have been saving them ever since.

Directions:  (sorry I didn't take pics along the way and I gave away three of the pumpkins last night so I only had the one left to take a pic of.)

1.  Make your template.  I cut a piece of paper half the size of the book and then cut it to look like a pumpkin shape.
2.  Rip the covers off the book.
3.  Trace your template on the page twice (once on the top of the page and once on the bottom of the page. I ended up making two pumpkins out of each book)
4.  Cut your shape out.  You can either just keep using the previously cut pages as a guide to cut more pages or keep tracing your template and cut out about six pages at a time.  I just kept cutting and cutting and my pages kept getting more and more wonky till they didn't match by the time I made it all the way around the book so it's probably best to trace the template every once in a while to keep your shape consistent.
5.  After you've cut out all your pages glue the first and last pages together with a glue stick and start fanning out your pages.
6.  Use an orange marker to color the outside edge of your pages.
7.  Find a stick in your yard and break it to the right length and then hot glue it in place.
8.  Raid your ribbon stash for a green ribbon and tie it around your stem and you're done!
9.  Give the extra pumpkins away for presents.
10.  Keep one for yourself to enjoy!
<a href="" title="Lil\'Luna"><img src="" alt="Lil\'Luna" title="Lil\'Luna" style="border:none;" /></a>

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Coloring Pages

I'm the Kindergartner teacher at the town after school program.  Most of the time they don't have homework so I come up with a craft or activity for them to do while the other grades are doing their assignments.  I wanted to have some cute coloring pages today and searched online but couldn't find anything I liked.  I remembered that I had these clip art cds from back in the day when I worked at Provo Craft.  I brought up some line drawings and printed them out for the kids to color.  They loved it and the images were way cuter than anything else available.  Going to make some more to have on hand when we have free time.

Monday, October 1, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Handmade for the Holidays

Last night we drew names for my husband's family Christmas Gift Exchange.  This is the second year we've done this.  Each year the family grows so it's a good idea for each family member to just have to come up with one gift.  There are three groups: the aunts, the uncles and the kids.  I suppose we could have the kids by gender as well but there's only 3 nephews right now and 8 nieces with one on the way any day now.  I don't think the nephews have any chance of catching up because I don't think there will be that many more kids.  Anyways... since I like to make gifts way in advance I'm glad to know who's on our list this year for my husband's side of the family.  I already delivered most of my family's gifts when we went to CA last month.  Only about 85 more days till Christmas so there's still plenty of time to make everything I need.  I already have several ideas for the remaining people on my lists.  Now just to find the time to craft in between unpacking boxes after our move last week.  Ugh!

Monday, September 17, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Free Museum Day

Saturday September 29th is free museum day sponsored by the Smithsonian.  Click here to look for a museum in your area and sign up for free admission.  A ticket will be emailed to you good for two admissions per household.  Last year we went to the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody.  I hadn't been there in many years and it was fun to see all the new exhibits.  They've recently done some renovations so I look forward to going again this year to see what's new.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - 30 day challenge

My friend - the wii fit balance board (never mind the dirty feet prints!)
One of my concerns when I was pregnant is that my back would hurt.  Oddly enough, I made it all the way through without my back hurting one bit.  Now that I'm lugging around my 18 1/2 lb 4 month old my back hurts all the time.  I've done a bit of walking since I had the baby but haven't really "exercised".  Today I decided that I would do the yoga on the wii fit.  My baby takes lots of naps so during his morning nap I did all 30 minutes of yoga.  It's amazing how much better I felt afterwards.  Ever since I had him I feel like my body is a crumpled up piece of paper and that I can't even stand up straight.  I know doing yoga will really help my posture and will strengthen my back and help me be stronger to be able to carry around my baby easier.  I'm challenging myself to do yoga every day for the next 30 days.   Even though I'm down 30 lbs and 10" around my waist I still can't fit into my regular clothes and every day is a challenge to find something to wear.  I know that by doing yoga every morning and continuing to do our evening walks I will be more toned and be able to fit back into my cute clothes.  I'll let you know how it goes!

{Tutorial Tuesday} - 1/4" foot and finding discontinued supplies

This should've gone up yesterday but the day just snuck past me.  How can July be over already?  The plans I had for it.  Oh well.  I figure I only do about 5% of the ideas that swim around in my head.  I'll get better right?

So, I finally started sewing together my baby's quilt.  He's 4 1/2 months old now so it's about time.  Luckily, he got 3 other quilts when he was born so he's been fine so far.  I meant to sew this up while I was pregnant but never felt very well and then we were going to sew it while my mom was here when I had the baby but that didn't happen so now I'm finally working on sewing it together so I can take it to CA with me at the end of the month and my mom can help me quilt it.

Believe it or not this is actually my first time sewing a regular quilt together.  I've sewed lots of rag quilts together and even though I've worked on quilts before I always made my mom sew them together because I was afraid I would mess them up. haha!

If you have the same fear, one thing that helps is having a 1/4" foot.  It has a handy little guide to help you line up your blocks so that all  your stitching is even.  My blocks still don't line up perfectly but I'm sure it's better than if I just tried to follow the line on my sewing machine.

The other hint I wanted to share with you today is finding discontinued craft supplies.  I happened to pick this quilt kit up on sale over a year ago at a quilt shop in St. George, UT when we were driving through.  A couple months ago I finally started looking for a back for it and decided I wanted the same fabric used in the binding.  I checked the local quilt store (which is 50 miles away) but they didn't have it.  I looked online at the manufacturer's website but it was discontinued.  I also checked a couple online fabric stores that I've ordered from in the past but they were sold out as well.  I finally checked etsy and several sellers had exactly what I was looking for and at a good price.  Hurrah!  I was able to order what I needed and it arrived in just a few days.  Thank goodness for people selling their supplies online.  A couple times I've ran out of a color of crochet thread that is discontinued and have been able to find exactly the right shade on ebay.  So if you are ever needing more of a craft supply you run out of, be sure to check ebay and etsy and you might just find exactly what you need.

Monday, July 30, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - In Store Coupons

This is an example of what not to do!  A couple of weeks ago I went to Wal-Mart and saw that the Birthday Cake Oreos had a $1 off coupon attached.  I'd wanted to try them so I picked up a package.  Unfortunately, in the chaos of going through the checkout and making sure I used the couple of coupons that I'd brought with me I neglected to remove this coupon from the package and use it.  And since it blends right into the package the checker didn't notice it either.  haha!  So when I got home and put the groceries away, there was the coupon still on the package.  I've heard that you can bring the coupon and receipt to the store and they might credit you a $1 but since it's 100 miles roundtrip to the nearest Wal-Mart this isn't a feasible option for me.  So the lesson today is - If you give into temptation and buy an impulse item because it has a coupon attached make sure you actually use it when you go through the checkout!  (The Oreos were really good by the way.  If you haven't tried them yet I recommend them!)

Friday, July 20, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - Owls

On a recent trip to Billings I spotted this in the dollar bins at Michaels and just had to have it!  Owls have been popular for a while and I'd been looking for one so this was perfect - in my budget and useful too.  I keep it by my sewing supplies to hold my jewelry while I'm working on a project.

Monday, July 16, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Local Facebook Groups

My baby is 4 months old now and loves to sit up.  I was thinking that he'd be ready for an exersaucer soon so I searched for one online to see what was available and then I posted in our local facebook group to see if anyone had one for sale. I got an answer back right away and was able to pick this up today for just $15 (I later saw it at Wal-Mart for $40).  It's in great shape and I think my little guy likes it.  Just a reminder that if you can find something used you can save a lot of money.  See if your town has a facebook group for people to sell their used items on.  You may find just what you were looking for at a greatly discounted price!

Friday, July 6, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - Garage Sale Finds

I've never really been into going to garage sales but it's the big thing to do here in the summer time.  I guess because there's just a short span of time that you can even have garage sales here and the nearest thrift store is a half hour away so it's not always convenient to hit that up.  My neighbor had one last weekend and even though I'd planned on being one of the first ones there I ended up sleeping in so we didn't get over there till 10 but I still found some awesome stuff.

The first of my "must have" items was this game which was in perfect condition.  It was one of my favorites growing up.  My brothers and I played it all the time and I love it.  So glad to have my own copy now.

That's probably all that I would've bought but then they brought this beauty out and I snatched it up to the disappointment of everyone else who was there.  Isn't it gorgeous?  Just $5.  I'm thinking it would look amazing spray painted but knowing me it'll probably be like this for a while.  I'm so in love with it!  (Sorry the picture is wonky!  The chandelier kind of looks like Wall-E)

I also got this great tray that works perfectly for organizing my cabochon earrings I made recently.

These are the other treasures I got - a red bakelite bracelet, a plastic organizer, a glass frog and a white glass mini vase.  So cute!  Garage sales could def. be dangerous for me.  I better not go to very many of them.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - Happy 4th of July

Hope y'all had a very Happy 4th of July.  Mine was full of Family, Food, Friends & Fireworks just like it should be.  But now I'm wondering if the fireworks will ever end.  People really should get the day AFTER the 4th off to sleep in!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Crocheted Macbook Cover

I finished this up for my sister in law yesterday and love how it turned out.  She was at my craft booth a couple of weeks ago looking at my selection of tote bags and mentioned that she needed a bag for her macbook.  I suggested a crocheted cover and she liked the idea.  She likes sunflowers so I embellished it with those instead of my traditional daisies.  It was a fun project.

Worsted Weight Yarn
Size N Yarn Hook
Yarn Needle
Two Buttons

Use two strands of yarn throughout project.

1.  Loosely chain 31.
2.  Turn and hsc in second chain from hook and in each loop across (30 hsc).
3.  hsc 3 times in end of chain.
4. hsc in other side of chain across.
5.  hsc around and around until there are about 19 rows.
6.  to make the flap hsc across one side, ch2 and then turn and hsc back across.  (flap is about 8 rows)
7.  to make button holes chain 2, sc, chain 2 and then continue with hsc across
8.  Sew buttons in place
9.  (Optional) Crochet embellishment of your choice and sew in place.

If you'd like one for your laptop let me know!

Monday, July 2, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Free $

Saturday we opened a savings account for the baby and committed to depositing money in it each month.  It's something I've been thinking about and am glad we finally had the chance to go into town and make it happen.  But wouldn't you know it that when we got back to the house and I checked the computer I found out about getting free $ when you open a children's savings account with ING?  Through July 3rd when you open a savings account for a child you get an additional $17.76 deposited into the account.  Sounds like a good deal to me!

Friday, June 29, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - Gift Exchange

At the beginning of the month I found out about an online gift exchange and thought it sounded fun so I signed up.  About a week later I was notified who I was supposed to make a gift for and was able to write to her and get to know her a bit.  I also was contacted by who got me so she could find out a little about me.  I had a hard time deciding what to make but finally decided on this measuring tape bag and a rosette pin that she could wear as a brooch.  She recently got married and indicated that one of her favorite colors was pink so I thought it'd be fun to make her these items from material from my own wedding quilt.  I mailed them off today.  I hope she likes them and I can't wait to see what I get in the mail!

Monday, June 25, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Always check your receipt!

So a Family Dollar opened in the next town over last Thursday and it was quite the stir.  People were lined up in the parking lot before they opened and some of the really good sale items sold out in just minutes.  I didn't make it until right before noon but was pleased with the selection and think it will be handy to pick things up there as I need them.  They were running a special of $5 off a $25 purchase so I decided to blow $20 and get a few things.  Among my items were a couple of camp chairs since we don't own any and needed them for the upcoming town parade.  I also got some candy and a few little things to get the total to $25.  When I checked out somehow it didn't add up as I anticipated and I thought maybe I'd done the math wrong in my head but as I walked out the door and was examining my receipt I noticed that only one chair rang up at the sale price and the candy didn't ring up on sale either.  The price difference was $5 and so since the line had dried up, I turned around and went back in and asked for an adjustment.  Of course, this being the first day they were opened no one in the store knew how to help me and I ended up standing there for at least 10 minutes and finally had to explain to them how to do it.  They didn't completely follow my suggestion so their inventory will be off but in the end I was credited the right amount.  Such a pain not to have things ring up at the right price.  I hate it when that happens.  A couple weeks ago I splurged and got a gallon of chocolate milk since it was on sale but then when I got home I noticed that it rang up at full price.  Not cool when this happens.  Remember when you used to get the item free when you were charged the wrong price and then they would make sure it was corrected in the system so no one else would be overcharged?  I think I'll be more diligent about checking my receipt from now on.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - Now appearing at flip!

Saturday, when I walked to the post office to get the mail I noticed that the hair salon was having a "garage sale" in the back of their shop so I went around to the back of the building to check it out.  I found a couple of things that I was interested in but didn't have any cash on me so I couldn't get anything.  Yesterday, when I went to check the mail I popped in the shop and asked if the sale stuff was still out and if I could get something and she said it was, so I picked up a flannel sheet and told her that I was going to make baby blankets and burp cloths out of it for a present.  She noticed that I had some handmade stuff on the stroller and pointed out that half of her shop is a gift shop and that I was welcome to put some of my stuff for sale there.  So today I took over a basket of all the headbands that I have in stock.  It's harder for me to go to shows now that I have a baby in tow although he's been a champ and slept through the two shows I've done so far this year.  I have a lot of product in stock so I'm happy to have somewhere to display it.  I've always wanted to sell my items on commission in a store and feel lucky that this fell into place so easily.  She wants me to bring more stuff as well.  I ordered new business cards today to make it easier to label everything.  The headbands are in a basket on the counter so I hope they will sell well.  If you are in the area, stop by flip next to the Cowley Post Office to check it out.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Machine Embroidery

I'm still working on sewing up cloth books - 3 down and 2 more to go.  As you can see this quiet book has a name plate for the owner's name.  Since I'm lucky enough to have a sewing machine that does a bit of embroidery I thought that would be the easiest way to add a name.  I haven't done machine embroidery very many times and it's been a while so I practiced on scrap fabric a couple of times to see how much room the name would take and then I sewed on the project.  Silly me still had the walking foot on and the letters ended up getting all messed up so I had to rip it out (what I was trying to avoid by practicing) and start over again.  This time I used the foot that my machine recommended and also pinned 2 layers of fabric under where the embroidery was going to be to reinforce the area.  The "E" shifted a bit but overall it turned out good enough to keep.  I really should think of more projects I can do to utilize this feature of my machine.

Monday, June 18, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - veryjane

One of my favorite daily deal sites is veryjane.  They specialize in handmade crafts, crafting supplies and other items craft lovers might be interested in.  Almost every day I'm tempted by one of their offers.  I've bought a few of their deals since I've signed up to receive their emails and follow them on facebook.  Every so often they offer a "free" pair of earrings (you just have to pay shipping).  This was the first deal I ordered.  I got these adorable pink cabochon earrings which I wear all the time.  Later, they offered supplies to make your own cabochon jewelry so I snatched that deal up as well but as you can see I haven't assembled the jewelry yet.  One of the many items on my never ending craft to do list.  If you love daily deal sites and you love crafts I recommend signing up to follow veryjane to get some of the best deals around and things you are sure to love.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

{Thankful Thursday} - Happy 4th Anniversary

Today I'm thankful to be celebrating our 4th wedding anniversary!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - Finished is better than perfect!

I bought some cloth books when they were clearing out the fabric in the AZ Wal-Marts a few years ago.  Even though I wasn't pregnant at the time, I was hoping to be again and bought one each of the styles they had available.  (They were Mary Englebreit how could I resist?)  Last week I finally decided to try to tackle the project.  I've never been that confident in my sewing abilities and I'd never made cloth books before but thought it was high time I give it a try.  I have to say that I'm not really a fan of making these.  The panels weren't printed square so they didn't line up when I was trying to sew them together and then of course the book ends up being really thick so sewing the pages together was difficult as well.  But I've read the book several times to my little one and he even was interested in helping turn the pages so it will do.  It's nice to have one of my many ufos (unfinished objects) actually completed.  I still have 4 more cloth books and 999 other projects to do.  Better get going...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Baby Bow Tie

I'd meant to applique some ties to some white onesies I got for Jasper to wear to church but of course hadn't gotten to it yet and he's already outgrown the little church pants I made him.  I'd come across various tutorials for bow ties and had been thinking about that as well.  On Memorial Day a niece mentioned that Jasper needed a bow tie and a couple weeks ago at church a talk was quoted about dressing your child as a missionary for church so that finally set me into action.  Sunday morning I made a cute little bow tie in less than 5 minutes.  (No kidding!)  I mainly followed the tutorial I found here.  I cut the larger piece 4 1/2" x 9" but the smaller piece only needed to be 2" x 2 1/4" since I cut the piece that she mentioned in half.  Even though I plugged in the glue gun, since I had a threaded needle sitting right there I ended up sewing it instead.  After I formed the bow I took a couple stitches through the pleats to hold them in place and then I added the middle part and stitched the ends closed and then I sewed on the pin.  tada!  So cute!  Sadly only a couple of people saw it though since amazingly he slept straight through all three hours of church and I just had a couple of people peek at him to see his cuteness.  He'll be wearing it again next week for sure!

Monday, June 4, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Free Father's Day Greeting Card

I love how easy it is to make and send photo greeting cards online. It's even better now that I have a baby so I always have plenty of cute pictures to put on the cards. There is often codes to create and mail a free card. Just so happens there's a code right now to make a free Father's Day card. If you haven't done this yet, give it a try. I'm sure you'll love it. You can either upload your own pics or use your pics already uploaded to facebook. Easy peasy!

Friday, June 1, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - Hand Sewing Rosettes

I started making these rosettes a couple of years ago and I just can't get enough.  I worked on these headbands today since I'm in a boutique next Sat. and it always helps to have a wide variety for my clients to choose from.  They are really fun to make.  I really enjoy sewing them.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

{Thankful Thursday} - Visiting Teaching

Today I'm thankful for Visiting Teaching and making new friends.  Went on a new route today with a new companion and got to know several new people. Some of my oldest friends I met visiting teaching many years ago and I'm thankful that we are still good friends and for the continuous opportunity to meet new people and  develop friendships with them.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - Scripture Cover

This is a variation of the notebook cover I posted yesterday.  My measurements were a little off so when I topstitched it the flaps ended up being too small.  I ended up unpicking it and hand stitched the flaps in place with a blind stitch so it would fit.  Thinking this would be a good present for outgoing missionaries or 8 year olds when they get their first set of scriptures.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Fabric Covered Composition Notebook

My nephew's birthdays are coming up and I've been brainstorming things to make for them.  I finally came up with this and sewed a couple of them up Saturday afternoon. I hope they like them!

1.  Measure size height and width of book while it is laying open flat.
2.  Cut two pieces of fabric about 1 1/2" taller than your measurement and about 6" wider.
3.  Sew fabric right sides together leaving an opening for turning.
4.  Turn fabric right side out, press and hand sew opening closed.
5.  Fold over ends of fabric for flaps and pin in place.
6.  Sew around entire outer edge of fabric.
7.  Place on notebook and enjoy!

Optional: Pen/Pencil Pocket
1.  Cut two pieces of fabric 2 1/2" x 5".
2.  Sew right sides together leaving an opening for turning.
3.  Turn fabric right side out, press and hand sew opening closed.
4.  Pin pocket in place and sew around three sides.

I actually have quite a few of these notebooks that I picked up on the cheap at a back to school sale.  I will be making lots more of these as I get the chance.

Friday, May 25, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - Rain Boots

Any day I get to wear these rain boots is a good day in my book!  A couple weeks ago it was in the high 80s and now that school is out and everyone wants to go camping this weekend for Memorial Day the high is maybe 50.  At one point today it was snowing, hailing and raining all at the same time.  I'd never seen that before.  Since we were out of milk I made a quick trip to the next town over to pick up some groceries and took advantage of the opportunity to wear these awesome boots.  I even got complimented on them from the grocery bagger who walked me out to my car and loaded my groceries in the trunk.  I bought these in CA a few years ago from Target.  I think they were a return from an online purchase because they were they only ones in stock.  I bought them because I'd just returned from a trip to AZ where I'd gotten caught in some crazy flooding and wanted to be prepared if that happened again.  Of course in the years I lived there we didn't get enough rain to flood but I still wore my boots every chance I got.  I'll wear them this summer too when I work in the community garden since it's pretty muddy.  It's fun to have a cute pair of rain boots and to look forward to opportunities to wear them.  My dream would be to wear them to a rainy day at Disneyland.  What fun that would be!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

{Thankful Thursday} - Thank You Cards

Today I've been working on Thank You cards and I'm happy to report that I'm almost done.  I only have a couple more to write.  It's been an almost overwhelming task.  So many people have been so generous.  For a while there we were getting a package nearly daily.  It was better than Christmas.  We've been so blessed to receive so much baby gear.  We've received almost everything we've needed so far.  I'll drop some cards off in the mail tomorrow, finish up the last few and put the rest in the diaper bag to pass out to the locals as I come across them.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - Whirlwind Yellowstone Trip

A couple weeks ago we went to Yellowstone for the day.  It sounds so funny to say that.  Growing up, we took lots of vacations to Yellowstone but would always stay about a week and spend a day in each area of the park exploring it as much as possible.  Now since I only live 100 miles from the East Entrance it's possible to visit in a day and see quite a bit actually.  We left at 6 am and didn't return till 10pm that night.  My 2 month old was a trooper and was really good all day long.  We did the lower loop stopping at Fishing Bridge, West Thumb, Old Faithful, Paint Pots, Mud Pots, Upper & Lower Falls as well as several other places along the way.  The highlight of the day was probably seeing 2 bears.  A black bear crossed the road right in front of us on our way to West Thumb and my husband had to slam on the breaks to avoid hitting it and then we saw a grizzly bear on the way out of the park.  Even though it was a whirlwind trip it was a lot of fun and I hope we'll get to visit again soon and spend more time there.  I have so many fond memories camping there when I was young and look forward to making lots more memories there with my family.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Carseat Canopy

I finally finished this up last Monday.  It was a long time in the making.  I started cutting it out in February, then my mom and I both sewed on it while she was here when I had the baby in March and I just sewed the straps on last week.  It's so handy I wish I would've completed it sooner.  I've gotten lots of compliments on it.  If you would like me to make one for you let me know or make your own by following these simple steps:

1.  prewash and iron your fabrics.
2.  cut two 1 yard pieces
3.  pin them right sides together
4.  use a plate to round off all four corners
5.  sew around leaving an opening for turning.
6.  turn and press.
7.  topstitch all the way around
8.  make some straps out of scrap fabric or you can use ribbon, etc...  I used buttons on my straps but you can use velcro if you'd like.

Variation:  Piece together a couple of different fabrics to form the top.  Just make sure to add in a seam allowance to make sure you end up with a piece the right size.  I also sewed decorative ric rac across the seam to fancy it up a bit.

It's great to keep the sun off your baby as they're riding in the backseat and also to keep then wind off them while you are getting them in and out of the car and also discourages people from touching your baby as you are shopping at Wal-Mart!  haha!  Lots of uses!

Monday, May 21, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Shaklee

Basic H
If you've ever wanted to try Shaklee now is the perfect time.  This month you get a free membership ($19.95 value) with any purchase.  A Shaklee membership allows you to purchase products at a discount and also earn referral bonuses for introducing people to Shaklee .  I'd never heard of Shaklee until a few months ago when I met the local distributor.  Shaklee is well known for their vitamins, health products and cleaning products.  Personally, I've just used their cleaning products so far but have heard great things about their other items as well.  I can't wait to try their baby care items.  The item I've used the most is called Basic H.  It's a cleaner that comes concentrated and then you mix it up in different strengths to clean around the house.  One bottle of Basic H is the equivalent of 5,824 bottles of Windex!  Crazy huh?  With over 1,000 uses you are sure to find that it'll come in handy.  I use it all the time to clean the mirror in the bathroom and wipe down the kitchen counters.  Since it's non-toxic you don't have to worry about rinsing the counters after you use it and can even wash your fruits and vegetables with it.  If you've been looking to use natural, non toxic cleaning products give Shaklee a try!

Friday, May 18, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - Sewing

I sewed for a bit yesterday and it made me realize how much I've missed it.  I've done a few crafts when I can find a minute or two here or there but overall of course I haven't been doing as much as I used to.  I was given a bunch of these fabric squares so I started sewing them up in strips yesterday.  Today I sewed some of the strips together but didn't get them all done since we had the missionaries over for dinner tonight so I had to do a bit of cleaning and cooking today.  Still not completely sure what I'm going to do with them but I've been enjoying sewing them together.  Maybe a table runner and a couple of pillows?  It feels so good to sew again.  I'll have to try to squeeze it in a bit everyday during nap time!

(I'll post another picture when I get them finished.  <3 the Mary Engelbreit prints.)

Thursday, May 17, 2012

{Thankful Thursday} - A Happy Mother's Day

My first official Mother's Day

Sorry it's been two weeks since I last posted.  Still getting used to Motherhood and I had a friend visiting for over a week and we had fun playing tourist.  As you can see I didn't do Jasper's hair for this picture.  It adds charm to babies to have their hair a mess right?  And you can also tell that he's drooling like crazy lately.  He can't be teething already can he?  Hard to believe that last Mother's Day I'd about given up hope that I'd ever have a baby and this Mother's Day I have an adorable 2 month old.  He's so much fun and such a good baby.  I just rubbed his head till he fell asleep.  He kept laughing at me but finally drifted off.  Sometimes I just stare at him in wonderment and can't believe that he's actually mine.  Such a blessing!  In my last baby magazine it listed things to do to pamper yourself while your baby is sleeping.  I guess I haven't gotten to that point yet.  When he's sleeping I file his nails, do his laundry, organize his ever growing pile of stuff, write thank you cards for all his gifts, etc...  It's so amazing to watch him figure things out.  Yesterday he started watching his feet intently as he moved them and since I've been rubbing his head to get him to fall asleep the last few days, he started rubbing his head as well.  So much fun!  For Mother's Day Josh fixed us chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast.  At church Jasper screamed like crazy so I rushed him out to the hallway and he spit up all down my arm.  It took me a while to get him calmed down but then he slept straight through the last two hours of church.  We had dinner with Josh's family and his sister made an awesome cheesecake that was delicious.  Overall it was a good day.  Hope your Mother's Day was good as well!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - Long Nails

I know this is a really random post but oddly enough I've managed to grow my nails super long since the baby was born.  I guess it's a combination of vitamins and not doing as much as normal.  It has been a bit awkward to type and I've been afraid that I would scratch the little one but never did.  I actually broke a nail last night so I trimmed my nails down quite short.  Not sure if I'll ever have nails this long again.

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Fabric Photo Matte

I'm sure I've mentioned how much I appreciate the generosity of bloggers who share their free printables.  It seems like nearly everyday I download some sort of freebie.  Many times I resize them to 4x6 before I print them to make them more economical.  I'd printed this off in my last batch of pictures and decided to frame it today.  I looked through my scrapbook paper but couldn't find anything that I like but then I saw this piece of fabric sticking out of my stash and thought it was perfect.  I found a piece of cardboard and cut it to 5x7 and cut the fabric the same size.  Then I used a glue stick to adhere the fabric to the cardboard and then glued the picture on top of that.  I probably should've used spray adhesive but it was late and I didn't have to mess with that but it seems like this is going to work.  I wish I remembered where I got this printable from.  I looked around but couldn't remember.  If I do I'll post a link to it.  Will add this to the box of decorations I have for the baby's room (if he ever has one!) ha!  I guess I could hang up some of his stuff above the changing table or his crib that is next to my bed.

Monday, April 30, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Coupons by Mail

Probably the most obvious way to get coupons is by subscribing to a major newspaper.  If you live in a city you more than likely get coupon inserts in your regular mail along with your weekly ads or a monthly envelope of coupons to local places.  Since none of those options are available to me living in a tiny town if I ever use a coupon it's usually one that I've printed online or requested off facebook but recently I've received a bunch of coupons by mail for baby items.  Some of these offers I registered for and some I did not but many of them have come in handy for much needed items.  If there are some big ticket items you are needing you may find that there are some high dollar coupons you can use on them to get a better deal.

Friday, April 20, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - Kindle Fire

I don't know what I'd do without my kindle fire. It's been a lifesaver for me. So many times my newborn falls asleep on me and as much as I enjoy holding him it's nice to be able to do two things at once. I've been trying to keep my kindle fire handy lately so in case I am trapped under a sleeping baby I can still check facebook, look up the weather forecast, listen to some music, watch a movie via netflix, play a game or read a book. I love it!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

{Thankful Thursday} - Freezer Meals

I'm so thankful to all the ladies who brought over meals after I got home from the hospital.  Several people brought soups so after we enjoyed them for a night or two we froze the leftovers in small containers.  When I don't have much time to fix something for lunch I can warm up a serving.  It has really come in handy on several days when time has slipped away from me.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - the claw

Originally I bought this in AZ to pick up pieces of cactus that fell off the plant in the backyard since they were dangerous to pick up with your bare hand.  I retrieved it from the garage during my last month of pregnancy to help me pick things up when I dropped them or when I came across something that shouldn't have been on the floor.  The last couple of weeks it's been handy as I'm recovering from my c-section it's been painful to stoop down and pick things up off the ground.  I found it from Ross in a "as seen on tv" package.  I think they are marketed to elderly people but really are great for all sorts of projects like getting hard to reach trash out of the bushes which needs to be our next project now that the weather is warming up and we've been doing some work in the yard.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

{Tutorial Tuesday} - Trash Sack Holder

While my mom was here she sewed up this trash sack holder to hang on the changing table.  Brilliant!  There's nothing worse than needing a bag when you are changing a yucky diaper and not having one handy.  I didn't take pictures as she was making it but it's pretty easy so I'll do my best to explain.

1.  Cut a piece of fabric about the same size as a kitchen towel.

2.  Turn over the short ends 1/4" twice and sew to hem the top and bottom.

3.  Sew elastic just under each seam across the top and bottom.

4.  Sew the long sides together.

5.  Attach a piece of ribbon or ric rac or seam binding to the top to tie it on the rail of the changing table.

This comes in handy every day!  I'm so glad she made it!  I wish I had thought of this when I had a babysitting job in AZ last year.  It would've been so nice to have some trash bags right there instead of having to run to the kitchen to grab one each time I needed one.

If you have a baby shower to go to this could be a unique gift for the mom to be!

Monday, April 16, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Frequent Buyer's Club

If there's someplace you go often, one way to save some money is to check if they have a frequent buyer's club.  Many places have them to encourage repeat business knowing that many people will not follow through and complete the card and redeem it.  About once a month, we make the 100 mile round trip journey to Cody to go to Wal-Mart and a few other places to stock up on necessities.  Most of the time we pick up a Papa Murphy's pizza on the way out of town to cook for dinner when we get back to the house.  As I've been here a year now, we just filled up a "Take 'N' Bake Club Card" and was able to pick up a free Family Size Pizza on our last trip there which was on Saturday.  I have to admit that even though I've had lots of club cards in the past it's rare that I've stuck with them long enough to fill them up and receive the free item.  Knowing that we were going to get a free pizza was extra incentive to make the trip this past weekend and we enjoyed every bite.  We miss having a Papa Murphy's right around the corner from the house like we had one in AZ but are glad that at least there is one accessible.  I encourage you to analyze where you frequently shop or dine and see if they have a similar program to take advantage of.  Every little bit adds up.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

{Whatever Wednesday} - One Month!

This little night owl kept me up till 1:30 am this morning and as a result I didn't get a blog post up yesterday.  Daddy is watching him right now so I can make a quick post.  I found these month stickers online here and printed them out today and took some pictures to commemorate my baby's first month milestone.  He's growing so fast.  I couldn't get the onesie to snap so I just tucked it in these pants which are marked 3-6 month but barely fit him.
My mom made the quilt he is laying on.  I just love 30s prints so she collected a bunch of baby prints and made this quilt for him.
In some ways I can't believe a month has passed and in other ways it seems much longer.  Even though I'm not getting as much done as I used to how I can I complain when I have this cute face staring at me much of the day?

Monday, April 9, 2012

{Money Saving Monday} - Make Do

Sorry about the 4 week hiatus but shortly after my last post I went into labor and let's just say that life is much, much different for me now.  I'm still trying to figure out how to get things done and take care of my newborn at the same time.

I've seen this on several blogs and wanted to post it:

Growing a baby is the ultimate act of creativity!

While I'm still recovering from the delivery and trying to figure out how to get an adequate amount of sleep I'd like to start blogging again so we'll see how it goes.

Since today is "Money Saving Monday" I wanted to talk about "making do".  Amazingly, even though our infant is 4 weeks old now we still haven't spent any money on him yet.  Thanks to the generosity of family & friends so far we have everything we've needed.  Sometimes it might be tempting to go out and buy everything you think you could possibly need but it isn't necessary.  Just have a little patience and take some time to figure out what you really need and wait to see if you get it.  We're still receiving presents almost daily.  Between brand new items that we've received and the hand me downs that are continuously passed on to us we've been doing fine.

Friday, March 9, 2012

{Favorite Things Friday} - green baby hat

Received this as a present today.  Isn't it just too cute for words?  This picture doesn't do it justice.  The yarn actually has gold threads through it.  Love it!  Can't wait to try it on our little leprechaun.