Sunday, July 31, 2011


Heartsy - Exclusive deals on fabulous handmade designer items at members-only prices.
I found this website called Heartsy. The link is here and I'll get points if others sign up to. I was wary about it. It's kind of like Groupon from etsy shops. I completely salute people who sell things at etsy. Generally I think things are overpriced for what they are, plus shipping. I've done a lot of window shopping there, but haven't bought much. Until now. With Heartsy, you buy a voucher and get more money to spend in the shop. And if you pay $8/month to be a VIP, you get $10 more than that. I went ahead with the VIP for my second purchase. It's just too good a deal to pass up. The voucher covers shipping and everything. Generally I spend $9 and get $30 in the shops. So far I've bought stationary, soaps, candles, a zippered pouch and wristlet and a cell phone cover. The cell phone cover is for myself and it's really great. The other things are going to be gifts, along with some handmade stuff that I did actually hand make. (I've got to get those zippers down :() Anyway. I think it's a good deal and I've had good experiences so far with the site. There's a variety of different things each day. I think I'm going to post it to my facebook, but I hate to spam :(  Anyhow.    


Bible class today was good. The story was when Jesus fed the 5000. Pastor emphasized that the disciples looked at their resources instead of asking Jesus what needed to be done. It's easy as humans to limit ourselves by what resources we have, instead of relying on God to supply what we need to do his will. Scott pointed out - and he's always siding with the poor disciples because hindsight is 20/20 - that they came to Jesus with their best plan (to send the people home) and ran into "man proposes, God disposes."
Scott also brought up, and I hadn't considered this either, that Israel was expecting a military and political savior instead of a spiritual savior because that was always how God had saved Israel before - by raising up a military general. But God had different plans this time - He was fulfilling the covenant with Jesus. Like how the Old Testament led up to the New. In that light, it's easy to see how the people were confused, even though Jesus had told them and John had told them.
And in Romans - Paul was trying to explain to a Jewish church how, since Jesus fulfilled the covenant, we're all part of the spiritual Israel, not the political or genetic Israel. We're spiritual Jews; not genetic Jews.
Good stuff. I was also reflecting on how many of my personal prayers had been answered this year. God is so good!  

Saturday, July 30, 2011


I won these fabrics from Jessica @ Sew Homegrown. They are heavier fabrics than I'm used to. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with them. Something fun! :) 

Friday, July 29, 2011

Bucket list

I don't have one. Is that abnormal? To not have goals? I have little goals, like saving money or finishing this quilt. But big goals? Not really. I'm pretty much where I've always wanted to be in life. I have a job I like, a husband and child I love. God has blessed us with any material need we have. I'm good. I've never wanted to own my own business or see the Grand Canyon or . . . I dunno. I'm good. I'd like to go to Washington D.C. eventually, but I figure there will be an academic trip somewhere along Gracie's school career that we can all go on together. Same deal with Europe. Maybe go on another cruise if we can afford it, eventually. I figure eventually I'll get tired of being in the classroom and move up or out, but I don't have any definite plans there. Is it lack of ambition or being content in a rut? I'm involved in our church and my ladies group in wonderful ways. Really, truly blessed. And happy.  

Thursday, July 28, 2011


I chopped jalepenos last night and I've really regretted it. I ate them last night and spent the night sucking on a plastic bag with ice to stop the burn. Then today I was completely miserable with burning hands. Nothing helped. It's better now, late in the evening, but it was really horrible earlier. I googled it and tried yogurt, peppermint extract, vinegar, hot water, aloe, etc, but nothing.

Gracie had dance camp this week. She wasn't as into it as I thought she would be. She said it was too long, and it was 2 hours. I went today and watched them perform the dances they learned. They're only 4 and 5, so not too high expectations, but still. Her teacher during the week was one of my former students that I didn't get a long with, so that's always there in the back of my mind, too.

Some days I take Gracie places with me and it's torture. Other days she's so good. We had a really good day this week. The school supply store was having its teacher open house, so we went and had a day. We went to Jo-anns and got more fabric to finish the backing for her quilt. I'll post about that separately. We had lunch and stood in line @ the supply store for a long time. But she was so good, against all expectations. She was holding out for a cookie @ the end of the line, and she didn't even eat it. We ended up going to Kohl's and getting the whole set of Clifford stuffed animals with her birthday money. Like she needed more stuffed animals, but they're Clifford. And she loves Clifford. And she'll keep them forever . . . Am I justifying or what? She loves them; it's her money, there. We also went and got some fish and visited a friend and her new baby @ the hospital.

Speaking  of babies - someone has put our names on a baby list. We're getting magazines and formula and coupons, etc. Do they know something we don't?

I shared about my surgery and some of the reasons for it with some college friends on facebook and 2 of them came back and described their own struggles with infertility. It put some thoughts in my head. I don't know if I would describe myself as infertile. We have Gracie. We love Gracie. Gracie is a tremendous blessing to us. We would like to have another baby. But I don't know how heroic our measures would be if that didn't happen for us. Part of it would definitely be laziness. But part of it might be that it just wasn't meant to be for us. Babies are made all the time. If we didn't, there would have to be a reason for it, and who are we to go against that? But again, that's from the vantage point of already having a child. I'm not sure how different I would feel if we didn't already have her.  Food for thought.


Wednesday, July 27, 2011


My mother volunteered me to do music at her church's VBS, which my mother is helping to plan. That in itself is somewhat of a miracle, one I've been praying for. Those prayers have absolutely come true - she's involved in her church's ladies group, she's in a Bible study and she's helping with this. Answers to my prayers for her. Absolutely. BUT I don't sing, I don't really play piano and I've never, ever led anyone (except Gracie) in song, ever. But I've been thinking about it - thinking back on all of the fun VBS songs we learned - Father Abraham, Praise Ye the Lord, a few others I've learned lately. And I'm a little excited. They don't know how many kids there will be, but that won't matter. Just when you think you've got a comfy place all set up for you, God pushes you out toward the edge. Pray for me; I'll need it.    

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Birthday party

Gracie's party was so much fun! There were so many people and so many kids. I think I was only missing 2 cousins and their families. I don't think any more people could have fit into our house.
The kitchen all ready for the party.

Birthday girl ready for the party.


Ready to blow out the candle.


Pretty cake

Close up cake

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Making Crayons

I found a tutorial on Prudent Baby for making custom crayons from candy molds. We tried it the other night and it worked well.  We made dinosaurs and stars. 

Saturday, July 23, 2011


I found this great watermelon fabric as a remnant @ Jo-ann's. Along with the bright green fabric, I thought I would make quilted placemats. I think I figured out how to do mitered corners now, and I think everyone will be getting placemats for Christmas. 
I quilted it using concentric circles. This is my first quilting experience. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Quilting class

I had signed up for a quilting class at Christmas and it got put off several times. It finally made on Sunday. It was a t-shirt block class. I wish it had taken place 2 weeks before. By Sunday, I had already begun making this quilt for Gracie, so I actually was telling the instructor the best way to do somethings. I did learn about fusible interfacing, which I hadn't used before and should have used for this quilt. I've taken several classes from Jo-Ann's and learned something useful from each one. I took a beginning sewing class and it was really informative. The beginning crochet class was good, but I had already learned a lot of those things. The scarf class was good. The first quilting class I took was ok. I learned how to cut fabric and other things. The actual block was horribly hard, but the process was informative.  

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Garage sale finds

I can't believe I haven't posted about this great dress. I found it at an estate sale a few weeks back. It's old with a great vintage floral pattern and bright orange color. I wore it today. Just lovely!
 I found these goodies at another estate sale a few weeks later. I got a great vintage suitcase with pretty flowers, this wonderful green fabric, which turned out to be about 3 yards, some other remnants and thread. The next day I went back to get other thread and some other things 1/2 price. Fun stuff!  

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


This is what she chose to wear today. 
Today was Gracie's actual 5th birthday. Scott came home from work with a dinosaur toast cutter, and he made dinosaur cinnamon toast for her this morning. We cleaned the playroom and went to the end of summer reading program's pizza party at the library. Then we went to Casa Ole so they could sing to her and we played at the playground. My parents took her to Chuck E Cheese for dinner. They had a blast. She's such a blessing to us. 5 years! I can't believe it. We are very lucky. I pray many more years ahead of her!  

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Rainy day

After a pretty long drought, it's been raining a little or a lot almost every day. Gracie's bday party is Saturday, so hopefully it will be not so rainy that day. Today we worked on laundry, cleaned the bathrooms and the floors. There was a lot of half-assery going on with the floors, but they'll have to be gone over again beforehand, so I'm not that worried about it. The bathrooms are clean - just need to clean the toilets before people get here. We'll be tackling other rooms later this week. It's not so bad. Not as bad as it had been in the past. We've done a pretty good job of not letting it get out of hand. Definitely vaccuuming. The play/craft room is a wreck. But I"m going to be working in there the rest of the day (hopefully) getting some projects done, so yeah. In honor of G's birthday we played hostess to our ladies group at church and it went over well. We have left overs to eat, but that's no hardship. Scott is on his way to a doctors appt. Hopefully they will do something with his medication where he's not so depressed and lethargic. We're just chilling. We'll put G's new bed together next week when she gets her sheets and bedding from her aunts. I think we're going to go to Schlitterbahn next Monday. After that it's just counting down and prepping until school starts. We both need to go through all of our clothes and get rid of stuff that isn't good for school or too small (or big). Now I'm going to quilt the watermelon placemats and bind them - scared, but I'm going to get into it. Then maybe make a dress with the leftover green material, then work on the quilt top. We'll see how much gets done.          

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Quilt blocks

The center and the rectangles are from the fat quarters I won. The little squares are from a pair of G's shorts.

The middle square the little squares are from fat quarters. The rectangles are from G's shirts. 
So I hate cutting fabric. If I were just using the fat quarters, it might not be so bad, but I wanted to combine some techniques and it's taking more time and effort. I'm taking some of G's old shirts and dresses and recycling the fabric for the block pieces.  I think these turned out well. 

The middle square and the little squares are from one of G's shirts. The rectangles are from fat quarters.

The middle square is from one of G's  shirts. The little squares are from a pair of shorts. The rectangles are from fat quarters. 

The middle square and little squares are from fat quarters and the rectangles are from an old pair of my shorts. 

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Taking in clothes

 So I've lost about 90 lbs. There are some clothes I didn't choose to part with. I'm not sure why. I made my first attempt at altering clothes the other day. I made another seam a few inches on each side, then took some of the elastic in from the top. It's still big, but not as bad. I don't think. I tried to do the exact same thing with an identical shirt in black this morning, but it didn't work and I had to bin the whole project. I saved the elastic and will resuse the fabric, but not as a shirt, unfortunately.  

This skirt was a size 20. I really like the fabric. I may use it as coasters or napkins later on. It had a linen-like lining that I took out, added some elastic and now I have a slip to wear under dresses and such.

Friday, July 15, 2011


 As I was looking for ideas for Gracie's party, I found some pinwheel tutorials. Sweet!
Years ago I bought a calendar of origami papers and instructions. Sadly, origami and I were not meant to be. So they've been languishing in my desk drawer, just waiting for a use. I dug them out and, during the last few days of school (review days - the only time I get bored in school), I glued them together, picking coordinating colors (with some help from my students).

I had some dowel rods and thought I was set. So I begun this week. There were some setbacks.
The deal with pin wheels is that they need to wheel. My first few attempts didn't wheel. I was using hot glue and a hole punch and brads. Not good.
Wheels of many colors.
I finally ended up using a straight pin through the center. I'm going to get some pencils (always good party favors) and pin them through the erasers. I have to laugh thinking about the process though. I'm a bright girl. Pin wheels should wheel.  
I put a glob of glue to attach the pin to the dowel rod.

Ones that didn't wheel.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Birthday shirt

I'm not a real Type - A personality about most things. Age has mellowed me and I'm lazy anyhow. There are some things I've always done for Gracie's birthday. I always make her a birthday announcement with pictures and a cute saying rhyming with her age.
"How time flies while you're having fun, Gracie _ is turning one"
"Hey everybody, guess what's new, Gracie _ is turning two"
"Just as wild as she can be, Gracie _ is turning three"
"Dancing diva  and so much more, Gracie _ is turning four"
"Growing up and hitting her stride, Gracie _ is turning five"
Another thing I always do is make her a birthday shirt. I'm hoping to make her a memory quilt someday and use them in there. This year's shirt has not gone so well. Her theme is Strawberry Shortcake, so I ordered a cute little SS ballerina iron-on from ebay.  I finally got around to starting it a few days ago. I've used iron ons before. I'm a bright girl. There were directions. The directions would have put the iron-on backwards, so I did it differently.

This is what is should have looked like.

This is what it  ended up looking like. The iron was messed up as well. I should have just followed the directions and had a backwards girl. Though I think the directions were wrong as well. So I hopped back on ebay to get another, different iron-on because MY  BABY HAS TO HAVE A STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE BIRTHDAY SHIRT.  But I'm thrifty and didn't want to waste even more money on another shirt too, so I'm trying to "fix" it.  

I used red paint to outline a rather unfortunate strawberry on top of the ruined iron on.

Then I filled it in and let it dry.

The I added the big 5. I'll add her name and other things tomorrow, then the new iron on to the back when it gets here. It will be ok. Not perfect or professional, but ok.

The other thing I usually do is make her birthday cake. I like to make it look nice. But my mother volunteered to pay for a "real" cake from a bakery, so that's what we'll get. I'm dealing. It will be great. Save me time and stress. BUT NOT FROM MY LOVING HANDS! FROM MY BRAIN! MY CREATIVITY!  Dealing. Right here. Dealing.      For her :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A quilt

I'm terrified to commit myself to this, but I already have. I have no clue. I'm reading directions and going from there. AHHHH! I'm using a pattern from this book that I won a few months ago. It's the fall one called Magic Carpet. It's a beginning pattern and calls for 8 1/2 inch squares, 8 1/2 x  2 1/2 inch rectangles and 2 1/2 inch squares. I cut out cardboard templates and I'm using Gracie's old clothes. Is that ok? Is that crazy? I'm using her cute old shirts with patterns and embroidery, and pretty colors and patterns. I have other, real fabric as well to fill in, but we'll see. We'll see how it goes. I don't know!! Some of the patterns aren't 8 1/2 inches square, so they'll have to have some other stuff added to it. I'll save those for last though. I'm scared to start sewing stuff together. I know that I can just unpick it if it's bad, but still. Still! I can do this! I can and will. I have to start somewhere. Right? Right.