Jul 31, 2012

A cute spin on a plain old diaper pail

I don't have one of those fancy shmancy diaper disposal systems at my house.  I have a plain old laundry soap bucket and a handsome and willing husband to dispose of the diapers for me.  But this time around I wanted to make my diaper pail just a touch cuter.
I started with this:
I cut out some letters and a skunk out of vinyl, added some ribbons to the handle and ended up with this:
Silly?  Probably.  Cute?  You bet.  Looks a whole heck of a lot better sitting at the end of my hallway now.
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Jul 28, 2012

Dear Walmart (for all of you who have missed my rantings)

You pretty much have the worst selection of adult women's pajamas that I have ever seen.  I am looking for a nice comfy pair or two of pj's to wear post giving birth but never in my adult life have I said, "gee I hope this store has Winne the pooh, cat in the hat, Oscar the grouch or Tinkerbell pajamas for me to wear." But guess what Walmart-that is all you have.  What adult woman is looking for cartoon pj's (don't answer that)?  I know that your stores vary from place to place but I don't think I have ever seen a decent pair of pj's in any of your stores.  Thanks but no thanks for the useless supply of juvenile pj's for the adult ladies crowd.
Looking for comfy pants elsewhere

And as one final tribute to Walmart:

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Jul 27, 2012

Super Boy Onesie

This is my latest little boy onesie.  I think it may be one of my favorites of all time.  My question to you is: Should I add a little cape (a detachable one of course) to go with it?  I kinda want it to have a cape.  And if you added a cape would you put the super logo on it again or what would you put on it?  And if you want to make your own, I found the "B" as well as all the other letters here
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Jul 21, 2012

A few new ideas you have to try

I know most any of you could find these same ideas by doing an internet search or looking on Pinterest but if you are like me they may be things you would have never thought to even look for in the first place.  That is just another reason why I love Pinterest.  I have found so many ideas and tried so many ideas that I never would have even thought of looking for on the internet, never mind all the time it would have taken to find one to try in the first place.  So I just wanted to share some of my new favorite neat ideas that make life a little handier.
#1.  DIY weed spray with natural ingredients found in your home: GO HERE  This stuff smells awful but works good on weeds (not all weeds are affected by it so be warned). 
#2. DIY sparkling tub cleaner: GO HERE  This stuff was awesome.  Spray it on, leave it for an hour (or less if things aren't that gungy (yes that is a made up word) then come back and wipe with a wet sponge.  I loved the smell and it left my tub sparkling.  Not going to guarantee it will clean anything but I had a pretty gross ring around my tub and I didn't have to scrub a thing.
#3. DIY laundry grease remover.  Have you heard this?  To get a grease or cooking oil stain out of your clothes rub some dish soap on it then launder as usual.  I had a skirt that got a big ol fat butter spot on it.  I tried putting cornstarch on it, I tried putting chalk on it and I accidentally threw it in the dryer without checking if the stain was out and guess what it was still there just as big as ever.  Then I found this on Pinterest and rubbed dish soap all over it and washed it and hung it out to dry.  I could still see just a tiny bit of the stain so I did it once more and guess what? The stain was gone.  Where has this been all my life?  I am like a grease magnet.  And to think of all the shirts I have cut up for sewing projects because they were stained.
#4. DIY oxy clean.  This one is also amazing.  Rub hydrogen peroxide and baking soda on a stain then wash as usual.  I just pour a little bit of the peroxide then add a bit of baking soda run it in and then add a bit more peroxide to make a paste.  I even got out a set it stain (washed and dried repeatedly) in a maternity dress (you know the area below your belly that you can't see even touched anything).  I put this on it and washed it and the stain was out.  Let it sit on tough stains.  I am not guaranteeing it will get everything out but it works pretty darn slick.  And don't forget that peroxide works great on getting blood out of clothing.

Now go forth and try them out. May you have amazing results just like me.
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Jul 19, 2012

Pretty Little Onesies

Just wanted to share a couple of my latest baby girl onesies.  I make these to sell. 
 This one is made with an old t-shirt.

 And this one has some lace trim with a pearl necklace.
Cute and perfectly girly.
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Jul 17, 2012

10 Minute Little Guy Bow Tie

 I am updating and reposting this tutorial since I have a handsome little model to show off my creation now.
When I had girls I always said that they seemed so much cuter/funner to dress than boys.  But now that I have a handsome little boy of my own I am finding that dressing a boy is just as fun as dressing a girl.
  There aren't a lot of cute accessory options for little boys however but there are a few and the bow tie is one of my favorites.  I found a few tutorials to try before this but the bow ties ended up being too big and almost clown like when finished.  I wanted something that was tiny tot size with the right proportions.  This bow tie is super simple, just watch.
Fabric scraps
Needle and thread
Sewing machine
Step 1: Cut out two pieces of fabric 1 that is 8 1/4x4" and 1 that is 5 1/4x2" (or 2 1/4") (this is to make a bow tie for a baby-like 3-9 months so if you want a bigger one you can adjust the size accordingly).
Step 2: Fold each piece in half (right sides together and sew lengthwise.  On the larger piece you will also sew one end closed. (NOTE: after making 9 of these I realized that you don't have to sew the end closed if you don't want).
Step 3: Turn right side out and iron flat.  I press mine so that the seam of the smaller piece is in the middle (if you don't sew the end closed on the long piece you can press the seam in the middle on it too).
Step 4: Bring the ends of the long piece in to the middle overlapping slightly and sew with your sewing machine.
Step 5: On the smaller piece, on the seam side (or the back side) place a piece of Velcro (I use the fuzzy side) 2" down from one end.  Pin in place.  Sew around the Velcro catching all the sides that are touching the fabric (so it will be like a little rectangle of stitching).
Step 6: Now fold the shorter end  (the 2" side) over the Velcro like shown and stitch with your machine.
Step 7: Trim off the excess fabric.
Step 8: Turn right side out.
Step 9: Slip over the bow piece and center (Velcro side to the back obviously).
Step 10: Do a quick hand stitch to attach the overhang of the Velcro to the back side only of the bow tie (be careful your stitches don't show through).
It should look like this when you are done:
 And like this from the front.
 Step 11: Now attach the other piece of Velcro (the rougher side) to the onesie or shirt you are using.  Then you just have to attach the bow.  It wouldn't hold up for a bigger baby or toddler that could pull it right off-in that case I would suggest a snap or something.  But for a little baby who can't quite figure out how to get it off or doesn't have the strength-this will do just fine.

 And there you have it: dressed to impress.

 And since they are so easy you can whip up a few more and give them all with one onesie as a gift.

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Jul 12, 2012

Baby Onesie Bunting

I wanted to make a new bunting banner to hang over my little guys crib.  I wanted something that was a different and boyish.  I created this onesie bunting by taking a template I found for a small onesie card and enlarging it.  I traced the number I needed onto cardstock, cut them out and then attached them to a piece of twine.  I added clothes pins and pieces of torn fabric in between. 
 I made the letters by printing them onto a sticker sheet on my computer.  I cut those out and stuck them on each onesie piece.  The whole thing took only a few minutes and I love the finished product.  This would also make a really cute welcome home baby sign as well.

To get a copy of the onesie go here.
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Jul 10, 2012

Do it Yourself Art Center for Kids

My girls are at an age where I can trust them to write and draw on a paper rather than all over the house and right now it is one of their favorite things.  I decided that it was time for me to throw caution to the wind and just let the art supplies be where they can be used.  Part of that came from talking to my mom who has been finding all sorts of different art and craft supplies she had for us when we were kids that she was always "saving" for just the right project.  Now she is wondering what she ever saved it for-why didn't she just let us use it?  That got me thinking.  I have tons of stuff in my craft room that I have been stock piling and for what?  Why not clear out some of my space and just let my girls have the stuff?  Who cares if it all gets used in a few days.  I have more and so does the dollar store.  Who cares if they right on a paper once and throw it away or glue one thing to it and call it a masterpiece.  The fact is that they are exploring and creating and I would much rather have my children be creative than be good at a sport, or dance or even reading.  So I created this little art center for them while they were gone one day. 
 I had found this piece of peg board at a thrift store a few months ago and finally decided that this is where is needed to go.
 I found this card box at the thrift store and turned it into the paper station.  I filled it with scraps of colored paper and note books, envelopes, paper dolls and writing paper.  Below are jars of pom poms, buttons and craft sticks.
 I used a few pegs to hang scissors and bags of chipboard letters and decorations, some foam stickers and paper flowers (all stuff that was just taking up space).
 I bought these cups for a dollar for a set of 4.  They are attached with zip ties to the peg board.  Below are two baskets: one for glue and one for stickers.
The whole project cost me around $20.00 and is so well worth it.  It will take some getting used to with the girls remembering to put things back but if I can learn to relax and just let them create and play then it will be one of the best things I have ever created for my kids.
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Jul 6, 2012

100% Sugar Onesie

I was searching for some onesie ideas the other day and came across one that just had the words 100% sugar on it.  Then as I was looking for clip art to make appliques for the onesies I thought of cotton candy and thus this sweet little outfit was born.
 It is a cotton candy onesie with a matching pink tu tu. 
What do you think?  Is it too much?
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Jul 4, 2012

Mom ideas for kids

I am by no means an expert at keeping my kids happy and entertained all day.  Some days we have major success and other days nothing seems to go right but I have found a few simple ideas that seem to work most of the time to entertain and keep kids happy.  I thought I would share a short list of ideas for young children in case you need help coming up with things on the fly.  Most of these are simple and easy to put together in minutes and don't involve you as the mom having to play endless rounds of duck duck goose (not that there is anything wrong with that, I am just saying I don't have the energy for it).

1. Water buckets, sand buckets, old cups and spoons.  Put these in front of your kids outside and don't worry about them getting dirty and they will be in heaven.
2. Make a simple treat-something that involves stirring (my girls love to stir).  They just want to spend time with mom, they want to sneak a taste of the batter or dough and they want to dump something.  No bake cookies, rice krispie treats or even a packaged cookie mix where they can help add 3 ingredients.  Usually my girls have had enough cooking/mom time after they've dumped a few things and stirred and are happily on their way.
3. Puffy paint.  I made this paint using shaving cream, Elmers glue and a bit of kids poster paint.  I didn't measure any exact measurements.  I sprayed in the shaving cream and added a bunch of glue, then a blob of paint and let my girls do the stirring.  Then they painted, and painted and painted (they have never painted so much before).  When one color ran low I turned it into a new color (I only did 3 colors cause any more is too overwhelming). 
 They loved it and yes it was messy and I just let it be that way and then after they were done I took 10 minutes and cleaned it all up and they played together happily.
 4. Puzzles-simple, 25 piece puzzles (preferably with a picture of something kids like).  If the girls seem to need mom time then I suggest puzzles (not too often-I like things to still be a novelty and not old hat) We sit on the floor and put together 4 puzzles and they are content and ready for something new.  And you can buy all kinds at the dollar store so it's not like you have to break the bank or anything.  Just keep them small and easy-I don't want my kids to hate doing it because they can never finish.
5. Pillow mountain.  To do this activity you need to get every pillow you can possible find in your house and put them all in a huge pile in the living room and let your kids climb over, under and through them.  That's it-and it is so great to get to make such a mess with every pillow-even the ones from mom and dad's bed.
6. Love bugs.  I made a set of these for valentines day but you could make them for any season.  I painted little bugs on a bunch of flat rocks and then when they were dry I put them in a bucket.  One person takes a turn hiding them all over the room and someone else gets to find them and then hide them.  It has been a big hit at our house.
7. Build a water blob.  This is a two person job and requires painters plastic (the heavy duty kind) and duct tape.  I saw this on Pinterest.  You basically form a package out of plastic, sealing the edges with duct tape and leave one small opening to fill it with water.  Once full you seal off the opening.  I wasn't sure how my girls would like it so we didn't fill ours extremely full and it was like a squishy water bed/slip and slide.  They were unsure at first but really got into it the more they realized they could slide all over it and jump and splash on it and you know when it actually became the most fun: when it got a hole in it and water would come out-then it was even more exciting.  We left ours up for 2 days and it got well used and demolished by the end of the second day.  I would for sure make one again.
 8. Get some of these:
Crayola® Color Bath Dropz
They are a little tablet that you drop into your bath water and it turns it blue or red or yellow (or you can mix two and make purple or green or orange).  My girls love these.  They don't irritate skin, they don't stain but they do make your bath water turn red and what kid wouldn't find that cool and you get to be the cool mom cause you have the magic stuff to make that happen.
9. Invest in a blow up air mattress.  We have one that is a queen size that we bought about 4 years ago.  The girls love to have it blown up just so they can jump on it.  It is like a huge indoor trampoline.  They can jump off the couch onto it, roll across it, do belly flops, dance etc.  It has been flopped on by every family member and is finally starting to not hold air like once did.  We will have to buy a new one but I think we may actually get two (one just for jumping and one for camping).  It was such a good investment and brings tons of joy to the girls.  It is great for cold weather outside and perfect for watching movies on as a family.  I might get one of the girls one for their birthday I am thinking.
10. Cardboard boxes.  We had these, I was going to throw them away but the girls were crying and I suggested they each get in a box, then dad and I pushed them around on the carpet for a few minutes, bonked them into each other and then finally filled them with pillows and made them into little nests.  The next day they stayed around and were a bed and a playhouse.  Small fry poked a bunch of holes in one and eventually ripped off the one side.  They hid under them and filled them with stuff and on day 3 they went to the trash.  Cheap, easy and fun and I didn't even have to build it into anything.  I just planted the idea in their minds of one thing they could do with them and they took over from there.
I'll share another installment another day but I hope these ideas are helpful to someone. 
For more really great ideas read this fantastic post.  I was super inspired and found a bunch of new ideas I had never thought of.
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Jul 2, 2012

Make Ahead Monday: Biscuits and Chicken Pot Pie

I may have talked about this before but even if I have it is worth revisiting.  Fluffy, homemade biscuits are probably one of my most favorite things for breakfast and one of my favorite things that my mom makes.  The trouble is that they take time and are messy and sometimes I don't want the hastle early in the morning or in the evening when I want biscuits to go with stew or soup.  But if I make a big huge batch only everyone once in a while and then freeze them and can take out just a few when I need them and have them last for a few months then I am one happy lady.  They are so much better then biscuits from a mix or a can so scrap the convenience of either of those (unless you are frying canned biscuits as doughnuts then you have something magical).  Here is my mom's recipe (I make a double batch and then freeze them on a cookie sheet and bag up after they are solid and store in the freezer).

Homemade Biscuits
2  1/4 cups flour
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter (cold-not melted at all)
1 cup milk

Mix the dry ingredients into a bowl.  Cut the butter into smaller pieces (about 1 tbsp sized) and add to the flour.  Cut in with a pastry cutter (that means that you need to chop up the butter into small pieces-this can also be done with a couple of butter knives).  Leave the butter in pea sized pieces.  Add the milk and stir gently with a fork just until all the dry ingredients are combined.  Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently the least amount possible (just enough that the dough forms a ball).  DO NOT OVERWORK THE DOUGH OR YOU WILL HAVE FLAT, TOUGH BISCUITS.  Roll out to no less then 3/4" thickness (I do this either by hand or with a rolling pin).  Cut biscuits and place on lined cookie sheet.  Take left over dough and gently form it into another ball and roll and cut again.  Freeze biscuits on cookie sheet until solid then transfer to freezer bags.  When you are ready to bake set your oven to 450 degrees and place frozen biscuits on a lined cookie sheet.  Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until they are golden brown on top.
Or here is another idea: top a mini chicken pot pie with the frozen biscuits.  I filled a bunch of small dishes with my pot pie filling.  I added a frozen biscuit to the top of each one.

 I baked the pot pie according to the recipe directions but left them in long enough for the biscuits to turn golden color and after about 25 minutes I had perfect mini pot pies.  I much prefer biscuits to pie crust on pot pie any day. 
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