Thursday, December 30, 2010

Found it at last!

Every time I go to the fabric store I see the magazines for quilting and a few for sewing but nothing that really spoke to me.  Well last week I went and there it was a magazine that was speaking to me saying, "Take me home."  The magazine is "Sew It All".  I love this magazine and thought I should spread the word.  It has some really great projects in it.  I have already marked like 10 that I want to make.  This is only the second volume so I hope that they keep making them.  Here are a few of the items I plan on making:

Saturday, December 25, 2010

December 24th and 25th

Well this is the end of our reading count down to Christmas.  The funny thing is that we had "Silent Night" both nights.  Last night we read "Silent Night" by Darcy May and tonight we read a scholastic book "Silent Night", which is a board book.  Both books are the first verse of the song "Silent Night". 

How fitting is it to read the beautiful words to "Silent Night" on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  What a wonderful way to celebrate the birth of my Saviour Jesus Christ.  My heart is full of gratitude and love on this Christmas Day!  I am grateful that Heavenly Father sent his beloved son to this earth for all us.  To give us peace and hope in a world of turmoil and strife. 

I hope that all of you had a very Merry Christmas.  May we all remember the true meaning of Christmas.

Friday, December 24, 2010

December 23rd

"Here Comes Santa Claus" by Gene Autry and illustrated by Bruce Whatley is a book made from Gene Autry's famous song.  The illustrations shows a little puppy who is with riding along with Santa on his way to a little boys house. 

The kids liked this book because they kind of already know the song.  Really great illustrations!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

December 22nd

Merry Christmas Mom and Dad" by Mercer Mayer is a cute story about a little critter who wants to help with Christmas.  Everything that he helps with just doesn't turn out like he had hoped for.  Like when he wanted to decorate cookies for mom and dad but he couldn't stop eating them.

December 21st

 "Room for a Little one" by Martin Waddell is a beautiful story about an ox making room in his stable.  First comes a dog, then a cat, then a mouse and last a tired donkey who has been carrying Mary.  Over and over the Ox says, "There's always room for a little one here."

I hope that we always have room for Jesus in our lives.  Especially at this wonderful Christmas time.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

December 20th

You can't have Christmas without reading "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" by Clement Clarke Moore.  This poem is just a classic.  I can remember memorizing it as a child for school.

This poem was first published in 1823.  So it has really come along way!  It is said that this poem is what really united people in their idea of Santa Claus and what he looked like.  This poem has also inspired so many other books which use this poem as a guide.

The book that we have is old and probably from when my husband was a child.  It is a good old Golden Book. 

Sunday, December 19, 2010

December 19th

"Christmas in the Country " by Cynthia Rylant and Diane Goode.  This book is about a girl who lives in the country with her Grandparents.  She starts by telling about their simple life and how each season brings something to there life.  Summer is for eating fresh tomatoes, fall is for canning apples, and spring is for long walks.  But winter is for Christmas.  It is a beautiful book that shows the specialness of Christmas in the snow covered countryside.

I grew up in a small country towns and I think that Christmas is a truly special time.  Now I live in a big city and a desert on top of that.  But I still find that even without the snow we wait for Christmas here much like the country Christmas in the book.  Well we don't cut our own tree but I do have fond memories of doing that as a child.

So no matter if your are in the country or city I think Christmas is a special and magical time.

December 18th

I love the song "The Little Drummer Boy" so this book by Ezra Jack Keats does a beautiful job of adding illustrations to a beautiful song.  One of the things I love most about this book/song is that the drummer boy is so humble.  He wants so badly to give a gift to the Baby Jesus.  All that he can offer is his simple song on his drum.   A simple gift that means so much.  This is just a great reminder to me to give all that I have to serve my saviour.  Even my simple talents can mean something special to someone.  What a wonderful lesson to learn form a simple drummer boy!

December 16th

This is such a cute book about bear and his friends.  Bear's friends want to spend Christmas with him so they wake him up from his winter sleep.  Then they have to stay busy getting ready for Christmas to keep bear awake.  In the end all the friends fall asleep, but bear stays up and make presents for his friends.  He is so busy he doesn't see Santa filling the stockings at the door of the cave. 

This is just a fun Christmas book that shows the spirit of friendship and giving.

December 16th

Sorry still looking for where this book was placed after we read it.  So I will update this post later.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

December 15th

"Olivia Helps with Christmas", to tell you the truth I have been looking forward to this book being opened.  My family loves Olivia the pig.  My husband thinks our kids are a lot like her.  So when we saw this book two years ago we just had to have it.  The first time we read it we just laughed at Olivia and all she does.  This is such a fun book.

If you have ever had your kids help you with something and it winds up no really being helpful you will really relate to this book.  Thank you Olivia for making me smile tonight!

December 14th

"The gift of the Magi"  illustrated by Robert Sauber is the book that My kids read last night.  I the past years I have lest this book out because it is a longer story.  This year I thought that I would try it out and see how it went.  I did have to shorten a few pages in the interest of keeping attention but I still think they liked the story.

It is about a sister and brother who have lost their parents and both work very hard to make a living.  The sister want to buy her brother a special chain for this special watch that belong to their father.  Even though she saved all year she only had $1.87 and not enough to get him what she wanted.  She had beautiful long hair and decided to cut the hair and sell it so she can get him the gift. 

When he brother comes home he is shocked about her hair and clearly saddened by it.  He gives her his gift which is to beautiful hair combs and she crys because her hair is gone.  She says her hair will grow and then she can wear them.  She hurries to share her gift with him only to find out that he sold his watch to buy her combs.

This is a story of two people looking beyond their own wants and being willing to sacrifice for someone else.  I think it is a great Christmas story to remind us that the gifts we give should come from the heart.

December 13th

"The Christmas Star" by Marcus Pfister is another beautiful story about the birth of Jesus.  Marcus Pfister is best know for his book "Rainbow Fish".  As in Rainbow fish he makes the star and many other elements of the story sparkly and beautiful.  HE starts with the Shepard's discussing their visit from the angle and how they want to go and visit the new King but didn't know where to go.  The suddenly the starts begin to move and merged into a new start that lead the way. 

Then the King in his Palace far in the East sees the new star and goes to welcome the new King.  On his way he meets two other Kings journeying to the newborn King.

The the animals in the forest see the new star and follow it, because the star is calling them the Bethlehem.  Finally the star rests above the stable where Jesus was born.  Everyone welcomed the baby Jesus.  The mountain lion laid down the the sheep and the fox with the hare.  The great Kings visited with the humble Shepard's like they were brothers.

I love the last line:  "Inside the stable, the Holy Child fell asleep, and the glorious Christmas Star blazed its beacon of hope over all."

To think that one start gave so much hope to some many people is just awe inspiring.  May we each find this hope of Christ and the light of this Star in our lives daily.

Monday, December 13, 2010

December 12th

"I Believe In Santa Claus" by Diane Adamson is a great book for showing that many attributes of Santa are also attributes of Jesus Christ.  My parents gave us this book several years ago and I have loved it every since.  The author starts by talking about Santa and then she talks about Christ.

For example Santa comes and night, and so did baby Jesus.  I wonderful book for helping kids understand the true meaning of Christmas.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

December 11th

This story is about a mouse who can't wait to see Santa.  So he hides in a pot and waits.  Once Santa gets there he can't resist peeking in Santa's Bag.  Well he wides up trapped in Santa's bag and ends up on the sleigh with Santa.  He gets to see many wonders of the world.  Santa doesn't know he is there until the bag is empty.  Then Santa gives him a ride home.

I like the rhythm of this book.  It is very much the the rhythm of the poem The night before Christmas.  It also has beautiful pictures.

December 10th

This is a great book about Rudolph.  The front of the book says that this is the original story.  I like that Santa goes through the fog and dark night without Rudolph until he goes to Rudolph's house to leave presents and when he enters Rudolph's room the room if glowing from his nose.  So he asks Rudolph to help him so that he can get the presents out in time to all the boys and girls.  The of course Rudolph is a hero in his town and is no longer teased.
This book is kind of long but my kids stay interested the whole time.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

December 9th

Tonight the book we read is "This is the Star" by Joyce Dunbar.  This book stars out with one sentence and each page adds more sentences to all the other sentences.  Kind of like "Napping House".  The pictures in this book are truly amazing.  I have to say that this is not one of my favorites, but I do like that it tells about all the parts to the Nativity story. 

December 8th

Last night we read a classic, "The Polar Express" by Chris Van Allsburg.  I love this book and really enjoyed reading it with my kids.  As most of you know it is about a boy who is still wanting to believe in Santa Clause.  While in his room a train appears outside.  He goes on this train which is the Polar Express and headed to the North Pole.  When he gets there Santa chooses him to pick the first gift of Christmas.  He chooses to take a bell from Santa's Sleigh because he loves the sound it makes.  When he gets back on the train he realizes his robe had a hole in the pocket and he has lost the bell.  Christmas morning he finds a small box under the tree from Santa with his bell in it.  It is then that he realizes that only believes can hear the bell.

I love Chris Van Allsburg's pictures in this book.  I almost feel like I am apart of the story.  When my oldest daughter was little we went on a Polar Express Train ride here in Arizona.  It was so fun.  On the train they served Hot Chocolate and Cookies.  Then they read the story on the train.  We then go to a location that had a fake North Pole.  Santa boarded the train and gave everyone a silver bell.  I have been wanting to go back now that the kids are older.  Maybe next year.

And of course I love the book much more than the movie they made several years ago.  Although my son went through a train stage and watched that movie everyday I swear for almost a year.  Glad that stage is over!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

December 7th

Last night we read "The Crippled Lamb" by Max Lucado.  This book is really sweet and cute.  It is about a lamb that doesn't fit in because he is crippled.  He feels alone all the time.  When the other sheep leave to go feed in a new valley he has to stay because of his bad leg.  Later that night he awakes to a strange noise and finds Mary and Baby Jesus in the Stable with him.  The baby is cold so the lamb lays by him to keep him warm. 

Shows that each of us has a worth even if we think we are alone.  Our Saviour and Heavenly Father love us!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

December 6th


Last night we ready "One Snowy Night" by M. Christina Butler.  This book sis a cute book about a hedgehog who gets woke up from hibernating and gets a gift from Santa.  When the gift isn't just right for him he wraps it up and leaves it for a friend.  The gift then gets passed from one friend to the next and eventually winds up being the perfect gift for hedgehog.  This is a cute book that teaches about the act of giving.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

December 5th

Donkey's Christmas SongTonight's book was "The Donkey's Christmas Song" by Nancy Tafuri.  This is a cute book about the Saviours Birth.  It tells about the animals each singing to the baby Jesus as a gift to him.  The Donkey is worried that his bray will be to noisy and not good enough for the baby.  But in the end he gives his song to the baby Jesus and it is perfect.

As I think about the meaning of this book I can't help but reflect on what I have to offer my Saviour.  So many times I feel like my offering isn't enough or
should be better.  I may feel inadequate or lacking but my Saviour loves me and knows my heart,  As long as I am giving it my all he makes up for my imperfections, and that is truly the best gift!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

December 4th

My daughter must have a gift for finding wrapped books.  The two kids were talking about the Grinch who stole Christmas.  I told her that we have the book but it is with the wrapped books.  Tonight was her turn and she picked it.  So both her nights she has picked the books she wanted from the wrapped books.

I love "The Grinch who Stole Christmas" by Dr. Seuss.  I have memories of my mom reading this book to me on Christmas Eve.  Christmas Eve was always a fun night.  We usually got together with all the cousins at my Grandma's house.  We would dress up as The Nativity.  Often each family group would sing or perform something.  We would eat homemade donuts and hot chocolate.  It was all about being with family.

I love this book because it really teaches that Christmas is not about the gifts, the decorations, or the tree.  It is about Jesus' birth!  I also feel that it is about being with family.  I love at the end of the book when the Who's are singing and the Grinch is puzzled by their happiness.  He had stolen what he thought Christmas was only to find out the Christmas is not something that can be bought in the store.  Each year I try to remember that also.  By trying to keep Christmas simple so I can remember the real reasons we are celebrating.

December 3rd

For the third night of December we read "The Story of Christmas" by Patricia Pingry.  We have this book in a board book, which makes it nice for the littlest ones.  This book does a good job of telling the story of Jesus' birth in a way that is easy to understand.

December 2nd

On day two of December we read "Mooseltoe" by Margie Palatini.  This book is so funny and my daughter was really hoping she would pick this one.  In years past I have number the books so they are read in a certain order.  This year I am letting the kids just pick randomly.  The amazing thing is that she did pick the book she wanted.  This book is about a moose dad who is trying to make Christmas perfect but forgets one very important part of Christmas.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

December 1st

Okay so I should have made this post last night but I was was to tired.  We opened our first Christmas book last night for the first day of December.  Let me tell you the kids were so excited.  "Silent Night" by Susan Jeffers is a book of beautiful illustrations done by Susan Jeffers about the song Silent Night.  We read the book then talked about what the song means and then I sung it to them.  They are really the only people I sing for because trust me it is not always pretty.  Stay tuned for our next book!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Christmas Count down

Okay I was going to wait until I had a chance to take some pictures but decided that if I waited I would not get this posted.  So pictures will have to come later.  Tomorrow is the first day of December!  So I wanted to share with you one of my favorite ways to count down to Christmas.  We have several different advent calendars in our home.  But I think this is one of my favorite.  Every year I take 25 children's book about Christmas and wrap them each up in Christmas wrapping paper.  I then number them and put them in a basket.  Each night one of the kids gets to open a book and we read it together.  By the time Christmas day comes we have read 25 great books all about Christmas.  There are several reasons that I love this.  One I am a book addict.  Two I find it is a great way to teach my kids the true meaning of Christmas.  We have books about Santa in there but most of the books are about Christ and his birth.  I love it and the kids love opening a book each night.  So this year I will try to share with you each night what book was opened.  If you can find 25 books about Christmas in your house then get wrapping because your kids will love this new tradition! 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Busy Sewing

Wow, I just don't seem to make it on this blog lately. I really have good intentions and lots of things I want to write about. My life has been busy! Along with everyone else. I work 2 jobs plus being a mom and all my sewing projects. Lately I have been sewing reversible capes and selling them to friends and others on etsy for Christmas gifts. As of today I have sold 8 plus made 3 as gifts for birthday party's.

Along with capes I have also been making super hero shirts that match. I have an order in for 12 of these. 6 Batman shirts and 6 Superman shirts. If that's not enough I am also making cute crayon bags and offering them to friends and others on etsy.

So I have been busy sewing. I also still have pajama's to make for the kids for Christmas and skirts for Christmas also. Here is the thing. I love to sew. For me it is an almost therapeutic way to make myself sit down and relax. Sounds crazy huh! Well it is true. If only I could find more time or time with less interruptions. Oh well I will continue sewing, working, and being a mom all at the same time because I love it all! So I hope to be able to get on a post more often but I am making no promises at this busy time. Thanks for stopping in. Hope you are having a great Holiday Season!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Ironing Board Cover

I hate my ironing board cover.  It is always falling off because it ties at the end.  Well my son I decided to decided to pull on one of the strings until the other string was lost somewhere in the middle.  So I broke down and sewed a new cover.  I found a great little tutorial here.  And this is how it turned out in the end. 
Even my husband was happy about this.  He has been cussing the old cover for sometime.  What I love best about this is that it only took my 30 minutes from start to finish.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Batman to the Rescue

My little boy turned four recently and all he has talked about for the past year was having a batman birthday party.  So we did it and I wanted to just share with all of you a few things I did for it.  I was on a major budget for this party and I think I was able to really keep the costs low.
First off I made each of the kids Batman shirts.  I love the dollar Store because they had these shirts.  And then I just added the batman symbol.  I used a template for it from here.
Isn’t he cute.  My daughter made me do pink shirts for her and her girl cousin. 
I also wanted to make masks so I made my own template and then just cut them out of black construction paper.  I then hot glued so thin elastic to them.
I had originally planned on making capes for the kids but that was not in my budget so instead I used black garbage bags that I also got from the dollar store.  The kids loved it and most of them wore them the whole time.
On to the bat cave.  My son really wanted a bat cave.  I was originally going to use a canopy like you use when camping and then put tarps on the sides and have things hanging down.  Then this morning as I was looking at how long that would take I opted for an easier route.  I used our pop-up sun canopy and just added streamers and bats hanging down it was a big hit and super easy.
For the cake I just did a chocolate cake with yellow frosting.  I then cut out a bat in wax paper.  I used this wax paper cut out as a guide in.  Filling it in with chocolate sprinkles.  I think it turned out cute and it was simple and easy.
For the goody bags I made super hero coloring books.  You can find the instructions here.  I didn’t have book binding tape so I used black masking tape.  I think they turned out really great.
We had a really great time and I think all of the kids will remember how much fun they had.  What I liked most is that I tried to keep in somewhat Simple and Cheap Cost effective :)

Saturday, October 9, 2010


Maybe you remember the skirt I made for my daughter to wear on the first day of school.  I love this skirt and I want to make some more.  However, I can't find any more Chenille fabric like I used on the bottom.  I have search the Internet and search at least 5 different fabric stores.  All with no luck.  So if anyone out there has seen this and knows where I can get some please let me know.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Fall Wreath

I know it has been awhile but life gets crazy and busy right?  Well I am mostly settled into the new house I only have about 8 or 9 boxes still hanging out inside the house.  Slowly I am adding things to the walls.  I felt that my from door needed a fall wreath.  So I went to the dollar store and for about $6 I got all the supplies I needed.  I just hot glues the leaves on and I think it turned out pretty good. 

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


We moved this last weekend into a different house.  Needless to say my life has been turned upside down and I am still trying to climb out of boxes.  The upside to this new house is that the Master Bedroom is bigger so I will be moving my sewing area out of the closet.  I am very excited about this.  Our Internet isn't hooked up yet.  Once it is I will try to get myself together and back to blogging.  It doesn't help that my baby turned one and she is a full on toddler and into everything.  I think I blocked this stage out of my mind from my other two.  It seems a little harder this time. :)  It doesn't help that she has been walking for 4 months.  Just the other day I found her standing on the kitchen table.  Scary!!!!  I don't love the climbing.  But maybe I will get some sewing and crafting done soon. 

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Fabric, Fabric, Fabric

I am amazed at how fast my fabric addiction took hold!  So as promised in my earlier post here is my new fabric organizer thanks to Ikea.  I still have fabric out in my garage that my mom gave me when she was cleaning out and organizing her sewing room.  I love that I have so many options at my fingertips.  Plus it is on wheels so I can even take it into the kitchen to sew if I need to :)

I hope you like how my clothes are being shoved over more and more to make room for sewing.  Maybe some day I will have more room and can really have fun sewing !!!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Back to School Skirt

My Oldest daughter started kindergarten last week.  I have been wanting to make her some skirts for school.  I love the Oliver + S lazy days skirt pattern.  I make them all the time.  I also found a great pattern in the book Making Children's Clothes: 25 Stylish Step-by-step Sewing Projects for 0-5 Years.  So for this project I kind of combined the two.  In the book the skirt was made of corduroy and a matching material.  So I did corduroy and this fun material my mom gave me when she was cleaning out her sewing room. 

Don't the apples just scream fall and back to school.  I love it and I got it at Joann's.  The pattern in the book has a really cute pocket which I just had to add to this skirt.
Because my bottom material has the fuzzes on it I did the ribbon hem like the Oliver + S Pattern.  I also did my waist from that pattern I found the waist in the book to be more steps and I am all about easy!
She looked so great on her first day!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pajama Pants

I love making my kids pajama pants.  They are so easy and in the winter I can do a heavier material or cotton for the summer.  My little guy had me buy this fun construction material and I made him pajama pants.  I use this easy Simplicity pattern.  Here is the thing though, I don't make shirts.  I get plain cotton t-shirts and sew on something that matches the pattern.  In the past I just cut something off the leftover scraps.  You can heat-n-bond it on and then zig-zag stitch around it.  Turns out cute every time.  For this shirt I used a dump truck scrap that was left over from his baby quilt.  Plus I was able to get the t-shirt at the dollar store! Isn't he handsome!!!!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Recovering Kids Table and chairs

I have been getting things ready for my preschool class that starts very soon.  I have a small table and chairs that  I have had for 6 years and some of them have been ripped for about 4.  And every year it just gets worse so I decided to recover the table and any chairs that were ripped.  I think it turned out pretty good.







I went with a cream colored vinyl from Joann's.  I figured that it would go with whatever color the frames were.   

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Organizing my sewing area

Okay I have a confession I really have not got much sewing done this summer.  I had big plans and bought great material.  The next thing I know my summer break is almost over and my sewing area is totally out of control.  Last year I moved my sewing machine into a little sewing area in my closet.  With my husbands crazy work schedule I began sewing at the kitchen table.  So I was a mess in two rooms.  I made a trip to Ikea this week and bought a rolling cart with baskets to organize all my material.  I will have to post pictures soon.  Here is a picture of my sewing area from last year when it was new and clean.  Then just imagine piles of stuff everywhere.  I was going to take a picture but I am without a camera and on the hunt for a new one. 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Homemade Bread

I love making homemade bread.  Last year I made bread once a week and my kids and hubby loved it.  Then my wheat grinder was having some serious issues and I stopped making it.  Last week I was asked to make 18 mini loaves of bread for a church meeting.  Doing this brought back to me why I love making bread.  I love the smell from beginning to end.  So I thought I would share the recipe I use with all of you.  (If anyone is still there :)
Light Wheat Bread
4 Cups white flour
2 Tablespoons dry yeast
1/2 cup sugar
4 cups very warm water (125 degrees)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
6-7 cups whole wheat flour
In a bowl combine 4 cups flour, dry yeast and sugar.  Add water and oil; mix well.  Cover and let mixture sponge, or rise for 15 to 20 minutes.  Mix in salt and remaining whole wheat flour, 1 cup at a time until dough forms a ball and cleans sides of the bowl.  Knead 5 to 7 minutes by machine or about 10 minutes by hand.  Divide dough into equal portions.  Shape into loaves.  Place in greased bread pans.  Let rise until double in bulk.
Bake: 350   for 25-35 minutes
Yields: 4 4x8 1/2 “ loaves

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Best Playdough Recipe Ever

I use this recipe for preschool and love it.  I have been using it for years.  I love that it lasts along time.  I save my old playdough containers to store my homemade playdough in.  I have also used icing containers and that works pretty good too.

The Best Playdough Recipe Ever

1 cup water

1 tablespoon veg oil

1/2 cup salt

1 tablespoon cream of tartar

food coloring


1 cup flour

Combine water, oil, salt, cream of tarter and food coloring in a saucepan and heat until warm. Remove from heat and add flour. Stir, then knead until smooth. Keep in mind that the cream of tarter makes this dough long-lasting --- up to six months or longer --- so resist the temptation to leave it out if you don't have it on hand. This dough should be stored in a airtight container or Ziploc bag. Do not refrigerate

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Bored yet?

My kids are starting in with the bored theme lately and it is driving me crazy.  We live in a very hot desert where playing outside during the day is next to impossible unless it includes a pool.  Don't get me wrong we swim a lot like everyday for hours.  We have been doing swim lessons and a summer movie thing at a local theater.  But lately I have been wanting so really fun things for them to do that I don't totally have to help them with.  I want them to occasionally entertain themselves.  So I am going to be looking for some great ideas like that.  If you have any suggestions please fill free to leave me a comment.  Just remember 105 + degree outside.

Here is an idea that I saw and I think it would be really fun.  I may even have to use things they can find in the house since it is so hot.  Maybe even hide some of their toys and they have to find them :)  Check this scavenger hunt out. 

Monday, June 21, 2010

Summer time

No I have not fallen off the face of the earth or been kidnapped by aliens.  In all honesty I have just been a little lazy and a bit of a slacker the past few weeks.  I think that once school got out I just needed to veg for a little while.  I did go on a great camping trip with my family and I have almost recovered from that (it has taken a week).  About two weeks in to my summer vacation I told my sister that I was already starting to feel panicked that summer was almost over and I have so much I want to do.  So I am feeling much more motivated this week and plan to jump in feet first and get busy. 

I did finish reading "Catching Fire" by Suzanne Collins.  All I can say is the third book is coming out in August and that is not soon enough.  I am loving these books.  If you haven't had a chance to read them get a copy and then let your house fall apart as you are absorbed in reading it. :) 

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Hunger Games

Wow I really enjoyed reading "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins and I am looking forward to getting started with the sequels "Catching Fire" and "MockingJay".  This book is written for young adults but I often find that those are some of the best books.  Very well written and keeps you interested. 

This book is about North American Nation that is not like we know it today.  There has been rebellion and war.  Now the countryside is divided into 12 districts and the Capital has all control.  The Capitol is harsh and every year they pick one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 -18 from each district to come and fight to the death.  There can only be one survivor and that survivor will provide food and other necessities to their district by winning.  Sixteen year old Katniss Everdeen steps forward to take her sisters place.  And she must now fight for survival.

I loved the theme of this book and the whole what would you do if it was you.  Can good overcome evil?  Very good read.  So take some time to relax with a nice cold glass of lemonade and read away.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

New Sewing Books

I was at Hobby Lobby today and saw two sewing books that I just couldn't resist.
This Children's Clothes book has so many cute skirts, shirts, PJ's, and pants.  I love that it had a few boy items too.  Not just girls! 

Look at the bag on the cover of the handmade bag book.  I was drawn to this book and bag.  I can't wait to get started.  Once this week is over I will be organizing all the sewing projects I want to get done.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Google Reader

I finally opened my google reader and to my amazement I had 287 items to look at. I now feel like I have homework :) I could just clear it all but then I think of all the great crafty things that I will miss out on. So tonight I plan to get it all cleared out. Then I will have new ideas. I also only have on more preschool class to teach and then my summer begins. I can;t wait to get my sewing organized and get to work. Then I will have more things to show you. As for now I best get back to being a mom and doing my "Blog Homework"

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Granola Bars

These are the most delicious granola bars.  I love making them.  My kids think they are great.  I hope that your family will enjoy these as much as ours does.

Granola Bars

2 1/2 cups corn flakes
2 cups oatmeal
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey or light corn syrup
2/3 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate chips or raisins

In a large bowl combine corn flakes and oatmeal.  Set aside.  Grease a 9x13 pan with oil or cooking spray.  In a sauce pan combine the brown sugar and honey and heat over medium heat.  Heat just until boiling remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla.  Stir until smooth.  Pour over the cereal and oats and mix well.  Once mixed well add your chocolate chips* or raisins.  Press into greased pan.  Use the back of a spoon or I like to place wax paper over it and press it down.  Let cook then cut into squares and enjoy.

*  If your chocolate chips are frozen they wont melt to much :)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Milk Bath

Last week I was longing to take a nice hot relaxing bath.  I wanted something to put in it that would smell great.  I decided to make some milk bath.  Makes your skin feel so soft.  After a little research online here is what I came up with:


2 cups dry milk
1 cup cornstarch
1/8 tsp oil (I used lavender)

Mix all these ingredients in your blender or food processor.  Find a great place to store it.  I found some really cute jars at Hobby Lobby and they were 50% off.  Then run you a nice hot bath and add a 1/2 cup of your finished milk bath

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Paper Dolls

My oldest daughter had two birthday parties to attend on Saturday.  She really wanted to do something special for her special friends.  We thought and talked about it, then I came across Lily and Thistle's Etsy shop.  She has these amazing personalized paper dolls.  What I loved the most was that I could buy them and print them myself.  This was a great option for me since I didn't have time to wait for the mail.  They were a huge hit with both girls and their moms.  I found these envelopes at Office Max for $1.50 and the dolls fit in perfectly.  I had really wanted to find a cute box but wasn't able to find any long enough.  Lily and Thistle also has a great blog, please check her out and enjoy her wonderful paper dolls.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


I am amazed that it is May already.  This will be a busy month for me, so my posts might be hit and miss.  It is the last month of the preschool I teach so I will be super busy with that.  I do have a bunch of projects to work on this summer during my free time.  So I will be posting all the time once I get things rolling.  I am looking forward to summer swimming and just hanging out with my kids.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Washer Bookmark

finsihed bookmark
So I am sure that you have seen all the wonderful washer necklaces out in blog land.  Well I had to make a washer bookmark.  So here is my tutorial on how to do it.  I will apologize right now for the pictures.  I have the worlds worst camera and some pictures had to be taken on my cell phone.  Sad I know!


30 inches of ribbon

large bead

1/2” or 3/8” washers

18” Steel Stamping Set (got mine at Harbor Freight for about $5.00)


Black Permanent Marker

washer bookmark materials
Take your washer, stamping set and hammer to a hard surface.  I mine outside on some newspaper.  The newspaper keeps the washer from scratching.  Using your hammer stamp in whatever words you want to use into your washer.  I chose to use the word read.  Then take a permanent marker and fill in when you just stamped.  Quickly wipe away marker with a wipe or wet rag.  This fills in your letters so you can see them better.
read washer
Once your washer is stamped take your ribbon and fold in half.  Slide your washer to the middle.
ribbon washer
Next.  Slide you bead on the ribbon all the way down to the washer.
read bookmark
At the other end of your bookmark you will tie a knot.  You may want to singe the ends of your ribbon.  You bookmark is complete.  Happy Reading!
finsihed bookmark

Sunday, April 25, 2010


My oldest and I just finished reading Fancy Nancy Poet Extraordinaire.  A great book to teach about poetry.  After we finished I told her that I had written a poem about her.  So we found it and read it.  She decided that she wanted to write a poem.  So with me writing she told me what she wanted to write about:  GRANDMA.  I love my mom and I am so glad that she does too.  So here is her poem.


Grandma is nice to me.
Me and her have lots of fun.
She is a good Grandma and a good babysitter.
She likes to play games
Grandma has lots of flowers and green grass, that is greener than ours.
      Grandma is sweet like sweet lollipop.

Isn't this just so sweet.  I love her words.  Maybe she will someday be a great poet.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Chicken and Dumplings

Today the weather turned cooler again.  We went from 90 degrees to 68 degrees.  Big jump for us.  My oldest daughter thought she was freezing today.  So whenever I get a chance and the weather is cooler I have to make Chicken and Dumplings.  A year or two ago I found the best recipe in Cookie Magazine.  It is simply the best, Heavenly.  So here is the recipe straight from their website and so delicious.  I often use already cooked chicken in this recipe.  Also the heavy cream is what makes these so good.

for the soup
2 tablespoons olive oil

1 3-pound chicken, cut into pieces
1/4 cup flour, seasoned with salt and pepper to taste
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut into large chunks
2 carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks
2 stalks celery, cut into large chunks
1 bay leaf
1 sprig thyme
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

Fresh parsley

for the dumplings

1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup coarsely ground cornmeal
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 3/4 cups heavy cream
1.In a wide, heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, heat the olive oil.
2.Dredge the chicken pieces in the seasoned flour, then brown them in the oil over medium heat, about 2 minutes a side. Remove and set aside.
3.Add the onion to the pot and cook for 2 minutes.
4.Add the carrots, celery, bay leaf, thyme, turmeric, salt, and pepper and cook for 1 minute more.
5.Stir in the broth.
6.Return the chicken to the pot, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
7.Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the first five dumpling ingredients.
8.Add the cream and mix until just combined.
9.Drop about 12 heaping tablespoons of the dumpling mixture into the pot.
10.Cover and simmer for 12 minutes more.
11.To serve, scoop the dumplings and chicken into bowls, then cover with broth.

12.Garnish with the parsley.

Tip For quicker dumplings, mix 1 egg with 1/2 cup milk, then add the mixture to 1 1/2 cups Bisquick and stir to combine.

Recipe by Victoria Granof

Monday, April 19, 2010

Caroline Dress

I found this pattern on last week at Frog Legs and Ponytails.  As soon as I saw it I new that I wanted to make it for both of my daughter.  I loved that the pattern would work for both of them.
So I went right to work.  I loved that this pattern was easy to read and easy to do.  If I didn’t have so many distractions I could have finished it much faster.  I think it turned out so great on my little one. 
IMAG00164 IMAG00183
I just had to make her a flower to match her dress.  A tutorial will be coming shortly for that.  Isn’t she a doll.  Now to work on one for my old daughter.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Upside Down Tomato Plants

I was just at Walmart earlier today and saw the things you can buy to grow tomatoes upside down.  I am so interested in this concept and have been four a few years.  I have yet to venture into trying it.  Living in AZ I wonder if it is to hot here.  My sister grows tomatoes in her garden but I don't have room for a garden.  So I think I may have to give this a try. 
Go to Crafty Crow and check out her guest blogger Amida.  This is such a great idea and I love that I have everything already at my house, well minus the plant :)  I think I might give this a try.  One good thing about AZ is we can grow things all year long.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Plantable Paper

I think that I may have to try this with my preschool kids.  Would make a fun Mother's Day gift and Earth Day activity all in one.  This come from you can read the instructions Here.  She did an article Alpha Mom.  This just looks like it would be Messy and Fun!

Pizza, Pizza, Pizza

We love making Pizza at our house.  The kids love making their own.  This is how I got them to eat mushrooms :)  So we are going to share our favorite pizza dough recipe with you.
Pizza Dough Recipe
2 1/2 cups flour, whole wheat or white
1 tablespoon Sugar
1 Tablespoon dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup hot water (120 degree to 130 degrees)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Mix 2 cups flour, sugar, dry yeast, and salt.  Add water and oil; mix well.  Add remaining flour as needed to make soft dough.  Knead 5 minutes; let rest 5 minutes.  Roll or pat dough to fit a lightly greased pan.
Bake at 475 degrees.  10-12 minutes for one large pizza
5-7 minutes for medium pizzas.
I love letting the kids cut their own olives and mushrooms.  We use the Pamper Chief egg cutter.  They love it.  I love that I don’t have to worry about them cutting their fingers off.