Wearing Galoshes

Some vintage eye candy from my most recent Galoshes day.
I love the hankies strung up like a valance.
2 days after I took this picture of the Pepsi creates my Pottery Barn catalog came and had the exact crates in them! I have no idea what they had on them at the antique store, I didn't want to buy them, just liked the look.


I'm a contributer at the Fabulous Won!

 Recently I was asked to become a contributor on Fabulous Won.  The site is all about reviewing products honestly so that you don't waste your hard earned money on things that don't hold up. Although the site has been around for some time now, there are a couple new contributors so Fabulous Won is having a welcome party with prizes!  Just thought I would let you know in case you want to stop by.  

DIY Cupcake Toppers

My extended family decided to do a Christmas in July (except ours will be in August) this year.  We thought it would be fun to do a theme for the kids so naturally we choose Dr. Seuss' Whoville! I've been working on some Seuss stuff for the party and am putting together these cupcake toppers from Design Dream.
I'm a bit addicted to printable PDFs. It's instant gratification to buy something and be able to print it out right away! Makes things a lot easier too when I can just print, punch and glue.  These ones were even personalized, they were supposed to be a birthday theme but since my Seuss party is a holiday party I just had her put Hudson's birthday info and I can use those ones for his baseball party! The colors just happen to work out perfect!

Design Dream is offering a giveaway here!


Puddle Jumping

It's been raining a lot here lately.  Some pretty impressive thunderstorms.  I love the storms (although I don't love the damage they are doing for some). The other day it rained mid day and produced a beautiful rainbow right in front of the house.
It was actually 2 rainbows, you can kind of see a bit of the second one in the top right corner of the picture.  The building there is the one room school house my mom got about a year ago, isn't it cute! Someday when we get all of our storage out of it I will show it to you properly.

We took the opportunity to dance in the rain.
By the way, the dress Nadia is wearing was one of my early tutorials (in case you missed it).  You can find it here.


Inspirational Art

I love inspirational sayings and quotes.  Hanging something inspirational on the wall can be a daily reminder of what's important to you.  I recently added this print to my inspiration wall. 
It's from Enduring Arts on etsy of course.  I love buying right from the artist.  The print arrived quickly was very nicely protected in the packaging.  The artist, Jodi, is super friendly. Want one of her prints for yourself?  More on the giveaway page!


The perfect party invitation!

You can tell I'm getting into birthday party mode.  I'm still working on wedding dress projects, I guess I should have picked a different month to focus on that as there is just to many other things going on right now.  Check out the amazing invitations Blue Daisy Design came up with!
I told her I wanted the invite to look like a ticket and HELLO! She did an amazing job.  Not only did she make a baseball one for my needs, she made football and basketball to round out the set! If your interested in hearing more about Blue Daisy Design and her digital products, as well as get the chance to win something from her shop, click here.


Piccidilly Circus Designs and the Perfect Party Shirt!

Remember when I mentioned we are having a baseball themed party for Hudson this summer.  I found the CUTEST most perfect shirts for the kids from Piccadilly Circus Designs.  Seriously, they are perfect!
I'll tell you all about them (including how to win a shirt of your choice!) here.


Making All Natural Cleaners

With the current BP oil spill, {catastrophe} it has me thinking more about the effects that I personally have on what gets thrown away or flushed down the toilets when it comes to cleaning products. To me this is a perfect time to be accountable for what I what to use in my own home as well as put back into the earth. And though there are others have been using natural cleaners for years, I have always had this task on my TO-DO list for a couple of years. So this week was it. I purchased a gallon of no name vinegar, and three empty spray bottles. I had everything else that I needed right at home. I love that!

What you need for Natural Cleaners:
Baking soda
Lemons & Lemon Juice
Olive Oil
Newspapers & Soft Cloths
Clean Spray Bottles

Vinegar is a wonderful all purpose cleaner when mixed with water 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water. If you want, you can add an essential oil 15 -20 drops per spray bottle for a nice smell, but note that the vinegar smell will dissipate as it dries.
Another option is baking soda in 1 quart of warm water.
Natural Glass Cleaner:
Mix equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle. I like to add a small amount of lemon juice, just to have a nice smell.
Another option: Mix 1/8 cup of vinegar to 1/4 Tablespoon cornstarch and 1/2 Quart of warm water. This make for a wonderful streak-free glass cleaner. Make sure you use a crumpled newspaper for a lint free finish. And don't spray too much of the mixture onto the glass, and you will be spending more time wiping to get the moisture up. This really does leave your windows looking good!
Natural Toilet bowl cleaner:
NOTE: Either mix this into a large pail or mix over the toilet....it bubbles over like a shaken bottle of soda!
Mix 1/4 cup of baking soda to 1 cup of vinegar, and let it stand in your toilet for 5 minutes. Then scrub with a brush.
Natural Wood Polish:
Mix 1/2 Teaspoon olive oil with 1/4 Cup vinegar OR fresh lemon juice together. Apply the mixture to a soft cloth and wipe onto furniture. You do not need much and don't use so much that it makes the  wood to wet. {I am using the lemon/oil combo and love it}

For cleaning chores that need scouring, I love those Magic erasers!!! Esp. the plain, no frills kind with out anything added to them. Try them, I get mine at Wal-Mart in the cleaners isle.
Another option: Sprinkle baking soda and alittle water and scrub clean. Then rinse well. Salt is also a great scouring agent. Clean your stove top by sprinkling salt then scrub with a half of a lemon. The lemon juice is a great grease cutter. And the salt aides in the scrubbing. I like sea salt for this, but regular table salt is good too.
Add 1/2 to 1 cup of WHITE vinegar to the rinse cycle. It will soften clothes and eliminates static cling.
I notice that when I usually grocery shop, I am grabbing cleaners, which usually adds about $4 - $7 dollars per bottle to my bill. Now with converting over to this method, I figure the money I save, I will spend that on buying organic foods! What a great trade off!!

Crafts by Kristin Giveaway!

Check out the giveaway page for details on how to win a $25 gift card!


Tea Cup Pin Cushion

I bought the cutest set of little cups and saucers at a thrift shop for having tea parties with the kid in a couple years (when they are less likely to break them).  Unfortunately while I was letting my oldest look at them a bit before I packed them away he did in fact manage to break a saucer.  Well you can't have a cup with out a saucer at a proper tea party! The cup was just too cute though, I knew I could do something with it. 
Quick, easy, and uses scraps.  My kind of project! 

What you need-
Cup of choice
Scrap of fabric
Something round to trace that's about 3 times the diameter of your cup
Hot glue

Cut your self a template from paper tracing your round object.
Sew a running stitch around your fabric circle and begin to gather.
Fill your fabric and cup with fiberfill.
Put a big glob of hot glue on the bottom of your fabric ball and stuff into the cup.
Tuck it down into your cup until you have the shape you want.  Pull the fabric away from the cup around the edges and hot glue around the top.
Your done!


Inovative Idea!

Wait until you see what I'm going to do with this, from CSN Stores!

If your new to CSN Stores, it's a website with over 200 different shops in one place.  You can find pretty much anything your looking for from shoes to a sofa! I can not wait to show you my plans for the wardrobe!!! Your all going to want one. 

SL Preppy Style Designs Giveaway!

Check out the giveaway page for your chance to win from SL Preppy Style Designs!


Need a buddy?

I think most of us find that we get more things done when someone is holding us accountable.  It's nice to have a buddy who encourages us, or maybe even has the same goals for themselves, but that's not always an option.  I find that I'm usually more dedicated to the goal than my buddy, so when they give up it takes some wind out of my sails and I putter out too. 

I was recently introduced to a new site called Mindbloom.  It's free and has become my perfect buddy! Of course it takes a little more self accountability because if I kill my tree (you'll know what I'm talking about in a minute) no one knows but me.  But if your ready to get yourself in order, in any aspect of your life, I encourage you to check out what Mindbloom creators are calling a "social game".  ( By the way, if you do have an actually buddy, you two can play Mindbloom together and see each others progress!)  So meet my buddy.

Your buddy comes in tree form! This was my tree on the very first day right after I registered.  See how the leaves are different shades of green? The brighter the leaves, the better your doing in that area of your life.  Here's an introduction of how Mindbloom works.

When you set up your account you are given several areas of life to choose from.  Some of the areas include healthy, creativity, career, and relationships.  You choose three you would like to concentrate on to start with then rate how much attention you currently give these areas (this determines what color your leaf starts out at).

So now you have a little tree that's ready to grow! Each leaf when clicked on shows you the area you have chosen to concentrate on with goals you can set for yourself.  If you complete these tasks you get points and your leaf gets greener! As your points accumulate your tree moves to bigger and better locations (levels). 

There are other ways to accumulate points like inviting a friend to join you with their own tree (you can even see each others trees!), changing the motivational images inside your leaves, journaling,  and just visiting your tree! You need your points in order to set your goals.  When you accomplish a goal you get more points back! When you start to get the hang of things you can add leaves to your three branches.  This means you can add an area of concentration to the area you have decided to pay attention to.  Clear as mud to read I'm sure, but if I'm concentrating on creativity, that's my main branch and my goals have to do with creativity in general.  When I add a leaf to that branch I choose an area of creativity to focus on, I chose "Dream".  They provide all the choices so you have guidance but you are also given the option to add your own custom settings if you choose. 

If this sounds like the motivation you need you will have no problem getting started with the walk through they give when you start.  So I won't give you a full run down on directions here, but I will tell you what I'm finding so fun about playing.

  • You can connect it to your facebook account and choose to share your accomplishments if your one of those competitive facebook game players!
  • You have the support of a buddy while still keeping your goals private.
  • The point system prevents you from biting off more than you can chew.  I'm one to set a really big goal and jump in the deep end only to find myself overwhelmed.  The way this "game" is set up it forces you to take baby steps first.  Trust me, it won't take long for you to add plenty of daily tasks for yourself!
  • Relaxing music plays as your visiting your tree, the music switches up as you gain levels.  I typically play on mute because there is enough noise in my house as it is! But for those of you who like the music it's nice and relaxing.
  • It reminds you to take relaxing breaths! Every time something takes a second or two to load it tells you to "use this time to take a relaxing breath".  Kind of hard not to when it does that! It's a great reminder to slow down from time to time and not be in such a rush.  
  • Kill your tree? Or maybe you just decided you would like to concentrate on a different area of your life.  You can start new trees or prune branches and leaves to fit your goals.  
So I've been playing for about 3 weeks now.  I just added my fourth branch and am currently located in the mountains.

That one little green leaf to the right is a friend who I invited and has not yet set up her tree.  The brown ones are trees waiting for you to come water before they die! LOL.  You can see I've added a few new goals with extra leaves and even added a fourth branch which meant a new topic.  There are features I still have to work to unlock.  If you want to come keep my tree company let me know and I'll send you an invite to join my forest!  Remember, it's FREE! And I could use the company :) 


Jolly Clogs Review and Giveaway!

It rained here the other day and the kids were going nuts, which meant I was going nuts! So we all put on our galoshes and headed to check out the open play at a gymnastics place (huge disappointment, but the kids had fun).  Mom wore the clogs I got her for mothers day from Jolly Clogs, aren't they cute!

If you want to know more about them, and have a chance to win a pair head over to the giveaway page!


From high water pants to super cute skirt!

Kids always seem to outgrow the length of their pants before the waist.  Since it's summer I'm turning some of Nadia's too short (and to warm) pants into skirts!  She had a pair of Guess jeans that I loved so that's where I started. 
It was super simple and very quick so let's get started.  Cut the jeans off anywhere between the bottom of the zipper and the crotch.  You may end up cutting off the bottom of the back pockets, that's fine.  Measure the width of the front where you just cut off your legs and times it by 4.  That's the length your ruffle fabric will need to be cut to. 

Cut two strips of fabric at that length, one 4 inches wide and one 2.75 inches wide.

 Hem one long side of each strip. 

Lay your thinner strip on top of your wide strip lining up the raw sides.  Sew them together with a wide running stitch along the long raw edge.  Pulling on one of the threads from the line you just sewed, gather the fabric into a long double ruffle.  Ruffle until it's twice the length of the jean front.  Sew the two short raw edges of the ruffle together (this will make a circle).
Pin, right sides together, to your jean skirt.
Sew all the way around and TADA!



Vinyl Table Cloth Projects

My kids are slowly destroying my dining room table.  And that's not even with art projects or anything, just the sticky foods get stuck in the decorative edge of the table (yes my kids get the occasional pop tart, and boy can those things make a mess with a young kid!).  Table clothes just seem to slip around so I had almost given up when I came across this genius idea.  Smashed Peas and Carrots took a vinyl table cloth and sewed it like a slip cover so it couldn't slip around! The process is super simple (and very quick) as long as your table cloth is larger than your table.  My table is huge but I found the perfect vinyl cloth at Target for $4.99!!! It was a Circo brand on an endcap.  I wanted something fun that might make the kids sit at the table a little longer, but you can totally use something that will blend in more to your room.  I didn't get a great shot of the overall finished project but here is a snapshot to show you the pattern.
It's a bunch of little fish! I thought they would be fun for the kids to practice counting.  I did secure the corners with a bulldog clip even after sewing to fit snug just because of the beveled edge my table has, the corners were kind of slipping off.  But with the clips it works like a charm!

I even had some left over so I made a nice big wet bag for the pool!
This was my very first time sewing in a zipper!!!! And I think it turned out great.  I did take pics along the way just in case it turned out I could do up a tutorial, but I ended up making a mistake and instead having the exposed seam being on the inside it ended up on the outside.  That's what I get for deciding I don't need directions and just winging it.  But if you want to make one with your scraps there are a ton of zipper pouch tutorials out there and you can just ignore the dimensions and follow the steps with the size your using. 

Tro88 Review and giveaway

Head over to the giveaway page for details!


Feather Facinator "I DO" Re-done! Tutorial

I will get into bigger things with the wedding dress soon, but I had to do a couple instant gratification projects first.  So today we have a feather facinator! These things are HARD to photograph so you will have to deal with my poor photos today folks.  I also realized I could have taken a few more pics during the process.  But really it's all about layering.
What you need-
Small scrap of felt
Alligator clip
Clear glue

From wedding dress- half oval from tulle layer and small applique
Sew a running stitch along the curved side of the tulle and gather it up.  Cut an oval of the felt about the same size as your alligator clip.

Stitch your tulle layer on the felt.  Then glob some glue and start layering your feathers.
Don't be afraid to trim your feathers if they aren't the shape you want.  Once you have it all layered up glue on the applique to cover the stems of the feathers (and all the glue) and glue the alligator clip to the back.
They turn out differently every time! Check out etsy for some inspiration, there are some amazing designs out there (and much better photos!). Enjoy!

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