Thursday, November 6, 2014

Halloween 2014

Halloween snuck up on me again.
Right in the middle of everything it snuck up on me!
I've been helping with costumes for our High School musical production and trying to turn 250 pounds of apples into sauce and pie filling as well as everything else so when my mom offered to make my youngest's Halloween costume I was so, so grateful.

To say it turned out perfectly would be an understatement. My mom is an artist with fabric and this is just further proof.

She used Simplicity pattern 1233

Last November, the day after we saw the movie Frozen as a family, my youngest decided she had her sister HAD to dress as Elsa and Anna for Halloween.

What's a mom to do?

However, because I am the queen of procrastination Elsa's dress wasn't even begun until around 8pm October 30th.
But I got it done. There's a lot I could have and should have done to it to make it more special but she was happy so that's good.

I used McCall's mp381

Sometimes it's hard for a preteen boy to decide what to be for Halloween but he finally settled on Mad Scientist. Such a easy and fun costume. The hair makes it.

We were able to get together with another lovely Elsa. This is my great-niece......oh man that makes me sound old.

And finally, Halloween wouldn't be complete without a few jack-o-lanterns.
This years selections included:

Randalf the wizard (Gandalf's less famous/successful brother)
A kitty and her pumpkin
Our Lab Sadie

The weather was perfect, everyone was healthy and it really was a great day.
Now bring on the turkey and the pumpkin pie.....
Thanksgiving here we come!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Utility Apron Tutorial PDF

I just wanted to take a quick moment and thank everyone for their positive comments about and love for my Utility Apron Tutorial.
Last year my tutorial was published in a sewing/craft magazine. It was surreal to see my ideas and words in print and it was great that I was going to be paid for my work.

However, part of my contract stated that I could no longer distribute the tutorial/pattern pdf.
Which was understandable.

But paycheck never came.
Months went by....

And then I got an email informing me the magazine had filed for bankruptcy and I was told I'd never see my check.

So the rights to my tutorial are all mine again.

I'm going to leave my original tutorial available here on my blog but if you're interested in a printable  pdf version it's available through my Etsy shop as an instant download after purchase.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

What Have We Done?

I guess I'm looking for someone to reassure me or sympathize at least. But before you tell me you understand and it's all going to be alright you need to hear a story.

It all started back in January. My husband and I went for a drive around town, we like to look at houses and yards. January in Utah we were mostly looking at snow but we drove and chatted and enjoyed ourselves anyway. While we were on our drive we came upon a house for sale by owner in a neighborhood I absolutely love. I jokingly said, "Look, there's our new house." And I promptly called the number just to see how much they were asking. The price, size, bedrooms, lot size literally everything was perfect for us and despite the fact we weren't really looking for a new home we made an appointment to see the inside.
After seeing inside we loved it! But like I said we weren't exactly in the market for a new home.

This is where we should have put our house on the market and made them an offer but we didn't.

My two oldest keeping themselves busy while the two youngest look at toys.

Fast forward to the end of March and MDH and I are still thinking about that house.
By now the snow had melted and we loved the house and yard even more.
So, we made them an offer and listed our home with a real estate agent.
Because we'd waited they'd received another offer but for whatever reason that family couldn't close on a loan until August so they wanted to rent the house for June and July and then get a loan in August.
Our offer was contingent on the sale of our home.
From what we understood we had until June to sell our home and if we could do that the other house was ours.

In the first week of our home being listed we had 15 showings. That's pretty rough on a family of 7 but we managed.
No offers came.
6 weeks in (mid May) I was sick of cleaning and showing the house and so we decided it wasn't meant to be. We figured we'd give it until Memorial Day and then take our house off the market.

The Saturday of Memorial Day weekend we received an offer on our home. Unfortunately, we couldn't get a hold of the owner of the house we wanted to buy.
The offer was low so we counter offered, we didn't even really come down on our price and so we thought the buyer would either counter-offer us or walk away.

They accepted our offer on Memorial Day.

Memorial Day Weekend spent in the top of the mountains.

We got a hold of the owner of the house we wanted to buy the next day. He told us his house was no longer available, the other family was moving in.

We were devastated.

We hoped our buyers would back out because of the inspection or appraisal. But so far everything looks good.

So here we are. Looking for another home to buy and we can't find ANYTHING! And it wasn't that we wanted to move because we didn't like this house or neighborhood we wanted to move because we LOVED the other house and neighborhood and well my husband does want a bigger yard.

Yes, we could back out of the sale but it would cost us a lot of live in our own house. And my husband still would like a larger yard.

So I'm just a little stressed.....

We only have two more weeks......

What have we done!......

A little luck sure would come in handy about now.....

Here is where you can jump in and tell me you did the same thing or it's going to be all right.
I really need to hear it right now.

Oh and we got a puppy on Memorial Day. Yes, yes we are crazy but she sure is cute and smart and she was a gift given out of love by someone who knows how much we miss our old dog.

Friday, May 17, 2013


Last year, for the first time ever, I hung a wreath on my front door.
The wreath wasn't new, I'd hung it in my house before but for some reason never on the front door.
I liked coming home and seeing a bit of Easter on my door.
I think it's safe to say I'm a bit addicted to front door wreaths now.

This year I hung my Easter wreath again but after Easter was over I decided I still needed a touch of spring to welcome all to my home.
So I decided to try my hand at flower arranging and wreath design.
I headed off to my local Hobby Lobby, coupon in hand and found some supplies I thought I could handle.
I don't think I've ever mentioned it but I'm not very good at arranging flowers.
Case in point...
Whenever someone (usually my husband) gives me a bouquet of flowers that you have to put in your own vase I ask my husband to arrange them for me. He does a much better job.

Anyway, regardless of my lack of talent for flower arranging I decided to try to make a spring wreath with flowers for my front door.

As you can see I made a mess.

And here's the finished product.
I think it turned out alright.
I might have gotten a little carried away with the purple flowers sticking out and yes they may have poked my daughter in the face when she tried to open and shut the door and so I just might have had to shorten the ribbon it's hanging from and shortened some of the purple flowers
but over all I think it's better than what I usually am able to do with flowers.

I used a lot of hot glue and some floral wire so here's hoping it stays together.
And this is the first I've worked with painted burlap ribbon.
That stuff is so stiff and unyielding but I like the way it turned out and it wasn't so bad I wouldn't use it again.

The really important part is that when I pull in my driveway and see it, it makes me smile

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

There be pirates matey!

Avast! It be "P" week at Kindergarten! Argh, and that means it be Pirate day!
Captain Rosarita Chihuahua Hook be ready.

Thank goodness her older brother Captain Doodle Hook was willing to let her use his hat and jacket!

Halloweens past....circa 2004.
I think this was the last time we did a family theme. We're missing our 7 yo who was the crocodile from this picture.
Smee's striped shirt came from a good will bed sheet.
Capt. Hooks jacket and Smee's hat were a good will red polyester pant suit
Wendy's night gown was also from good will
Peter Pan and Tinkerbell were designed and sewn by me.
Crocodile (not shown) was also designed and sewn by me.
All of the costumes have come in handy over the years. Believe me we've seen our fair share of "P" week pirates in this house!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

It Was Rattling So Loud I Couldn't Think!

Have you ever done that?
Had something rattling around in your head you wanted to make/do but you just didn't have the time so you kept putting it off? But you just couldn't keep your mind off of it.
So it just keeps rattling and nudging and knocking....until've had enough!

Yesterday I got most of what I needed to do, done, and so I did what I wanted to do.
I sewed this little tote out of my brain and into existence.

Complete with pen pockets and another pocket for who knows what....chewing gum maybe?

Maybe one of the reasons I like to sew is because it gives me time to think.
Sometimes when I sew I feel like I'm doing mental gymnastics trying to figure out how everything will fit together.
And other times my mind just floats from one subject to another.
'My youngest's first ear infection'
'My oldest's upcoming date'
'The lesson I'll be teaching in church in a couple of weeks'
'Trying again'
'Straight seams'

A cacophony of thoughts that somehow ends with me feeling more ME.

I have lots of ideas.
Some don't work out so well.
Of course I don't usually take pictures of those but believe me there have been plenty.
And when they don't work out I remind myself that it's ok....I learned something....or a lot of somethings.
And when an idea does work....(like this little charcoal and tangerine combo)... the feeling is oh, so sweet!

So here's to rattling ideas that workout or not and time to devote to doing something you love!

Happy Wednesday!

P.S. My sweet little tote is available in my shop HERE.

P.P.S. I'm thinking of writing up a tutorial for this. It would include a basic tote tutorial as well as the little extras. Anyone interested?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


I'm not sure what to say about this..... :)
It's the Snowman Skit revisited with four of the current YW leaders.
Yeah we're awesome like that!

Friday, November 16, 2012

He's Quick

Image source

My oldest son and I were having a conversation about the sad state of the world and Hostess going out of business. I told him how the shelves at the grocery store that usually held Hostess products were completely empty today. 

He then said, "This must have been what the Mayans were predicting."
Love that kid and his quick wit!

It was a rough weekend.

Do you ever have those weeks, or in my case weekends, where everything just feels heavy, wrong and difficult?
And when it's all said and done you have to remind yourself that life is still good and you've been blessed with so much?
I had one of those weekends last week.
It started out good.

My husband and our oldest boy headed off last Thursday to LasVegas to run in the Ragnar relay race.
They were excited and prepared and it even looked like the weather was going to cooperate....mostly.
 Besides snow at the beginning of the race at the top of Mt.Charleston and a strong headwind later in the race I think the weather mostly did cooperate and they had a good time.

Back at home however things weren't looking so good. A terrible storm was blowing in and earlier in the week our dog started eating less and having a bit less energy.
I guess we weren't too worried because she's been getting older and she kind of normally acts that way when the weather changes.
But by Thursday evening she was not doing well.
First thing Friday morning I took her to the vet and her prognosis was not good.
I took her home and hoped to nurse her through the weekend until my husband and son got home.
Unfortunately by Friday night it was apparent that she wasn't going to make it through the night.
Each of the kids said goodbye to her and we all cried.

She'd only been with us for a couple of years but she was truly a part of the family.

These pictures were taken the day we brought her to live with us.
Can you tell she especially loved my husband?

 She filled a place in our hearts we needed to have filled with unconditional, excited, happy, silly, slobbery, warm love.
Our youngest girl, who started out being terrified of dogs, ended up being McCall's greatest fan.

Early Saturday morning McCall passed away in her sleep.

It was hard.

I wasn't sure what to do because I'd hurt my back Friday carrying our sweet dog to the car and back.
She wasn't a small dog.
So I called my neighbor and asked him if he could help me.
What a blessing good neighbors are.

Friday night it snowed too. Something to the tune of 15 inches. It was a lot.
So my neighbor and his wife even helped me shovel the drive-way.

Calling my boy on the race and telling him about McCall was one of the hardest things I've ever done.

We were a pretty sorry sight around here all day Saturday, we were depressed and I was in pain.
So we decided to go see Brave at the dollar theater. That was a nice distraction but the best part was when I fell asleep for half of it.

Late Saturday, early Sunday morning, my little girl started throwing up........
As is often the case with little ones the stomach flu hit in the middle of the night and she didn't make it to a place that could contain the mess. Needless to say it was everywhere.

Around 4 AM my husband and son came through the door after driving all night, they were exhausted but happy and I was happy to have reinforcements arrive.
Unfortunately one of their team mates had gotten the stomach flu on the race and passed it around to everyone.
So my man and my boy got sick within a couple of hours of getting home.
I'm sure being exhausted from the race didn't help either.

Luckily only 3 of our 7 ended up getting it. That was a blessing too.
After spending Sunday cleaning and disinfecting and nursing I was exhausted both mentally and physically. And I was happy the weekend was over.

I think it's going to take a while for all of us to mourn our sweet McCall, but we are so grateful we were able to have her for the short time we did.
Today I looked out the back window into the yard and it just felt empty.
She was deeply loved. 

The neighbor who helped me this weekend has offered to give us a puppy when their dog has puppies in a couple of months.
I think I need a little time. It just feels too soon. The kids are split, a couple of them want a new dog right away a couple of them don't. I guess we'll see.

Sorry this has been a little bit of a depressing post.
Thanks for reading.