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Monday, August 29, 2011

Dogs Go To Weddings Too!

Mrs. Emily has a friend who wanted her pup to join in her wedding festivites in and since Em is so busy with the new job...I took on the task.  Hi Amie!!  So anyway...I thought I'd share this lovely little piece to inspire someone out there.  Here it!




Good Luck Mrs. Amie!  Hope this collar makes your day just that much more special!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Looking For a New Rug?

I'm just sitting on the couch tonight searching my little heart out on Pinterest when I came across this picture!



What is it?  A table clothe turned  rug...yep that's right, read it again.  So I found the link.  A previous post done on the blog considers painting canvas and doing the same treatment to make a rug...GENIUS! 

Rugs are a tough sell in this house because of this cute little face..



Isn't he too cute.  His name is Trouble (that was his name before we got him...I should have known better).  He's about 9 years old and we've owned him for 6 of those years.  He was our first born and we LOVE him to death.  He's been stolen twice and he's such a pain, both times he was returned to us.  He WILL NOT be house broken.  I have tried everything and he has a crazy obsession with anything round such as a ball.  The obsession is soooo bad that the kids can't even bring a ball in the house.  That is actually what he's doing in the pic above, HE'S BARKING AT AN EASTER EGG!!  REALLY TROUBLE?  IT'S NOT EVEN A BALL!!  But I do love him, even though I pick up poop and clean up pee all day.  And before you judge, I have read the books, watched the shows, and taken all kinds of advice on house breaking this little fellow....it doesn't work...just take my word.  Anyhow....for this reason, we don't own rugs, or furniture that comes all the way to the ground, or bedskirts, or many other things...lol.  Now it's just a way of life, I know it's terrible...but I love him.

ANYWAY...this is a perfect rug solution.  In the blog she even says that her cute little puppy (that even kinda looks like my terd) peed on the rug and it just wiped right up...so hear me now...

THIS WILL HAPPEN!  I WILL MAKE A RUG LIKE THIS!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Christmas Project #2

Two more Christmas presents down today...I am on a roll people!!  Did you miss my Christmas list?  Or my first Christmas sewing project?

Well here we go!

Every Christmas Eve we have a tradition in the Baker casa where we let the kids open one present which is ALWAYS new Christmas jammies.  The tradition so far has been a huge hit with the kids and last year Josh and I joined in too. I ended up with footie jammies which I LOVE!  Here's a pic of me and the kids in our Christmas jammies.

               
(Since Josh didn't make it in the family photo with his jammies I included one of him too)

Anywho...so this year in the interest of saving money and having a handmade Christmas, I made the kids Christmas jammies (yes in August...get over it).  You can follow this tutorial to make the pants pattern.  I used a pair of pants for each that was one size too big....I mean we are talking about 4 months away....and I like to have room to grow.

So here they are!

Aren't they cute?  I used cotton flannel that I have had FOREVER.  It's drafty in this old house in the winter months and flannel will keep them warm and toasty. 

But WAIT FOR IT!  WAIT FOR IT!  You know I can't do anything simple...and I have a slight obsession with embroidery and letters at the moment...so here is the embellishment.

SOOOOOOO CUTE!!!

Ollie obviously gets the bow, her butt just isn't big enough for the letters....lol.  I can't wait to give them to them. They are going to love them.  I'm going to have to include a shirt for Ollie (Revel won't wear one to bed anyway)  But I think I'll just buy one and embellish it for her.  Can everyone say "FUTURE POST".  I'll let ya know. 
Wish I could give you a pic of these on some little smiling bodies, but you'll have to wait for the big day!  Hope you like...can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

It's Raining Babies

So where are these pics of the new "office" Mrs. Emily?  I am dying to know how it is going.  I'm sure you're super busy and have no time for my shinanigans...and to tell you the truth, we've been pretty busy on this end as well.   BBBUUUTTTT...I did get to sneak in a trip to Joann's on Thursday of last week with a great friend and this time I actually comprised a list of things I couldn't leave without and I actually got EVERYTHING I needed.  (of course this is until the next project starts)

OKAY NOW ON TO THE BABIES...

My childhood best friend, which was at the time, a mutual friend of Emily's is having her first baby.  And since I have completely given up baby having all together, it makes me even more excited when people close to me are expecting...what can I say...I have to live vicariously!  So we (yes we as in me and her...I'm totally including myself in this) found out it is a girl...and I almost peed on myself I was so excited.  I swore it was a boy, so don't ask me to predict these things, I'm no good.  Anyhow, so my sewing options have really opened up and during my trip to Joann's, I got some things for inspiration,  most of which were fat quarters which are perfect for projects such as this and of course I pulled out a few things to add to the pile. 

Now I know it is sooo cliche to make a baby blanket.  I have two kids and I remember, everyone wants to give you a baby blanket.  Most of which I found useless except a stack of blankets my lovely aunt made me from cotton flannel.  Some were doubled and some were just a single piece to make it thinner, but I used the STUFF out of those blankets, in fact, I love them so much, I can't get rid of them and Ollie uses them to swaddle her babies.  So I wanted to mimic those lovely blankets that I used soo much not to mention this bundle of joy will be coming home in December and will need to be kept warm by something. 

So to start off, a while back I found this blog post when I was searching for something completely unrelated on making little fabric pom poms and it inspired me.  (I know I've gone pom pom crazy...did you see my giant pom pom pillow?)  I have searched my butt off since then to find something to use these little fabric poms for and here we are! 

I didn't take many pictures of the making process, but I think it's pretty self explanatory.  I pieced the top part by just cutting the pieces so they fit together to make rows and then sewed the rows together just like you would any quilt.  I then attached the pom poms to the backing, which in this case is green cotton flannel.  (Keep in mind that the farther apart you put the pom poms, the less pom poms you have to make.  I could have a used a larger space in between mine in hind site)  I then attached the quilted upper to the backing sewing right sides together and leaving a small hole to turn right side out.  Last but not least I hand stitched the closure.  It's basically a regular blanket with an addition of the pom poms and the pieced top. 

Have I kept you waiting long enough?  Okay okay, here it is.


I know you love a good pom pom.

Aren't you in love with these colors?  (just nod yes either way...k?)
So here we are!  Hope it inspires you.  The possibilities are endless for the fabric pom poms. 

WHATS NEXT? 

I've started working on my Christmas Resolution.  Remember this post about my first completed Christmas present?  Well I have been working on something else that I forgot to add to the list.  Check them out tomorrow...(yes I said them =)......)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Back to the grind.

Oooooh. I love the hand print embroidery on the pillow. I've seen that on pinterest and thought it was definitely a cute idea for a Mother's/Father's Day present. I also thought it would be neat if you had a large piece of fabric and as your child grew you did handprints at different ages. It could be a neat twist on a growth chart. 

I don't have any pictures for you just yet but I'm taking my camera to work today to get some pics of the cleaned up classroom. It is by no means anywhere near finished but it's much more livable than it was. At least now I can focus on getting my lessons together. I'm having some issues with furniture arrangement so maybe you can give me some advice on that. 

In the meantime I'll leave you with some pictures from a photo shoot we did this weekend with some friends of ours who just had twin boys. We also snuck in a few pics of Sam while we had the backdrop set up.





I LOVE these pics of Sam. He's been trying to crawl for a few weeks now and this little series just cracks me up. I'm going to get them printed for my desk at school.





Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Murphy's Law Pillow

I'd like to start with this lovely picture of my little boy and his daddy heading to school on his very first day of kindergarten....*tear.  NAH!!  PARTY!! 




























MURPHY'S LAW PILLOW...

Okay so here is the pillow you've all been waiting for, including myself.  I found this blog post the other day on one of my favorite blogs Living With Punks for a pom pom pillow and that was when I knew that this was a project for me.

BUT....

Of course I can't do anything easy, so I decided to combine two projects in one.  So here is what I came up with, you can find detailed instructions to make the pom pom pillow here.
I started by tracing everyone's hand on top of one another on the BACK of my fabric.  Then I began emrboidering each hand in a different color.  Revel's is green and Ollie's is pink, mine is yellow and dad's is blue!  Check it out.  I love the way it turned out.
This is what it looks like on the back.
Here's the front.

Josh's had is yet to come in this picture (also notice for future reference that the background is all one color, hence the Murphy's Law part of this post...we'll get to this)
This part will take a while!  I worked most of the weekend on it but I love the outcome.  So next comes the pillow part. I followed the tutorial and made the pillow using the directions.
I will however say that you have to make sure to get the pom poms close to the seam when sewing, that was the hardest part, but once I got that figured out, it was smooth saling...at least until I went to put it on the pillow. I go to slip it on the pillow and as I'm pulling it down, I realize that I have sewn the front (the part with the hands) on backwards..YES BACKWARDS.  Not only that, but I clipped all the tails off pom poms so taking it all apart is not an option.  I mean, how does this happen?  How long have I been doing this?  Am I new here?  So frustrating.  So my only option now is to cut out the center of the front of the pillow where the hands are and apply a border and top stitch it back on the top of the pillow. So onward march.  And this is how it turned out.  I love it, but geez 'm peez.






Aren't the pom poms SUPER cute!  What a great idea, my head is just spinning with ideas.  Now I'm off to work on my sewing Christmas list.  Perhaps I shall tackle the winged skirt?  Check back tomorrow for progress.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Kindergarten Sunshine!

I haven't been around much in the last couple of days because we are about to set out on a new life adventure.  I'm thinking of it as the light at the end of the tunnel...a cross between a moving train, and heaven...lol. 

We're going to Kindergarten!!!

I have been a stay-at-home mom on and off now for 5 years, since my son Revel was born.  It has been a love hate relationship but I wouldn't have changed it for the world.  But like all of you stay-at-home moms of 5 year olds who are getting ready to go to school for the first time, IT'S TIME!  He absolutely drives me crazy during the day.  I cannot keep him busy enough and he doesn't want to do ANYTHING that I suggest.  There's only so many times you can so no to tv and video games in a day...HONESTLY. 

My frist mistake with Revel was thinking that as an infant and toddler that I needed to play with him every second.  That's what good parents do right?

Lesson #1
Don't play with your kids!  (Emily, take this lesson to heart)  Of course you should play with your kids, but they need to be able to keep themselves busy as well.  Beleive me, you'll thank me when they're 5 and not hanging from your pant leg like Revel.

I love this kid to death but he cannot keep himself busy to save his life.  If he's doing something, he wants you right there with him....so kindergarten is a dream come true.  AND to top it off, this is the first year for full day kindergarten for our school district....(all together now) .....WOOOOO HOOOOO! 

Now don't get me wrong, this moment is very sad.  Sad in the fact that for the next 13 years he will be going to school.  That he won't snuggle with me on the couch whenever we want and share edamame during the week.  But believe me, there will be plenty of time for that after school. 

So I am trying to spend as much time with my little man as possible before tomorrow comes.  But inbetween I am working on a pillow.  It's been quite a project for a pillow cover but you'll love it.  If I get it done today I will post it tonight.  But for now enjoy these pictures of what used to be, my baby.






Look at that hair!!!!!  I miss that hair!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

I've been keeping secrets.

I have a big announcement. Big changes are about to shake up Chez Blossom.

And, NO,  I'm not talking about one of these...




I'm scrapping my To-Do List. Because I've been spending all my spare time during the day cleaning up this place...



Welcome to my new classroom! I have just been hired to teach middle school theatre and I've got my work cut out for me. My first day is next Tuesday and then the kids arrive the following Monday so I've been diligently cleaning my basement classroom for the last week or so. The previous teacher has been there for 20+ years so there's quite a bit of purging that is happening but otherwise I'm super excited and uber nervous.

I'll try to post updated pics of the room as I sort through everything. But just think of the possibilities!

P.S. Did I totally get you with the ultrasound pic? Ha!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Baby Food Dude!

How can you not love the bapron?  I mean c'mon, it even comes with a catchy name...HELLO!  Wanna see where Emily got the tutorial on how to make a bapron (or just wanna find out what the hell a bapron is...here's the post.)  And of course as always your padded high chair headrest was waayyy too cute for words.  I would have never thought to quilt it with the batting like that...GENIUS!

Another thing I would like to put out there is...
I LOVE FAT QUARTERS!!
I do, I love em.  I mean when you can get them on sale they are a steal and I can do soooo much with those little squares.  I make it a rule to never deny myself one if I'm at Joann's and one is screaming at me to go home with.  They always come in handy for some project and I have literally made shorts, shirts, skirts, you name it out of those little things (it doesn't take much fabric to make anything for a 2 year old.) 

Food Dude...


This picture should get us started.  This is Ollie at probably around 8 months (she is 2 now....I know....sad right ).  Can you tell she LOVED food with all her little heart?..lol.  I made all my own baby food to begin with for Ollie so it wasn't too hard to make the leap to "finger" food.  Some easy things we tried were:
  •  peas..super easy to pick up and soft so they aren't likely to choke.   
  • Extremely ripe peaches cut into small pieces.  Just make sure they are ripe enough to be super soft.
  • Ripe bananas are easy to "gum" too.
  • My very fave was sweet potatoe sticks.  I would take a sweet potatoe and cut it into sticks (after peeling of course).  Almost like fries but a bit thicker.  Then I would boil and boil and boil until it was like mush but it kept it's shape still.  When you cool them in the refrigerator they firm up a bit. they were easy to hold and mush with the gums.
I got to babysit today and boy it reminded me of these days.  Ollie was so upset when Maddyn, the baby, had to go home.  Baby food and diapers and little fingers and toes,  made me a little teary to think my baby making days are over.  But on the other hand, toting Ms. Maddyn around today with my two other children made me realize how much they would get to miss out on with me focusing on another one. There would be alot more, "I don't have time" with another child around the house.  And so I am grateful for the two beautiful children I have, and am in turn happy with the fact that we will hopefully stay a family of 4.

Tutorial: Padded High Chair Headrest Cover


First of all, I LOVE the white flowered fabric you've used for the strap on Ollie's new purse. I keep eyeing it at Joann's and am just waiting until I can find the right project for it before I make the purchase. Maybe that X-Large Pom Pom Pillow you just posted on Facebook? 

How on earth are you going to keep that purse from her until Christmas? I would totally give in and hand it over the next time she tried to carry half the house with her to Target. I'm the pushover in our house. Can you tell?

So I'll start off my post with a picture of a cute baby. Here he is with his new high chair cover and his new bapron. I'm not going to do a tutorial for the bapron because you can get that here but I do have a few suggestions that I can share another day.



Tutorial: Padded High Chair Headrest Cover

There was a fat quarter sale at Joann's so I picked up two for $.99 each and grabbed a coordinating pack of bias tape piping. Yes, I could make the piping myself. But after a few recent forays into the world of bias tape I think I've decided my life was just as full without it. So storebought piping it is!! Not shown is the batting that I used. It was a scrap from a quilt that I started for my nephew and then never finished. (Sorry, Brad!) The high chair is a $20 craigslist find and despite being a little wobbly has turned out to be a good purchase. 





First you'll want to trace your high chair to make a pattern for cutting out the fabric. I laid mine on the floor and went around it with a pencil on some newsprint.



Next I used a plate to get my corners rounded and a ruler to connect all my corners with straight lines. The sharpie is just so I could get a dark enough line for the camera to pick it up. 


Since I could tell that my sides weren't symmetrical I found the center of my outline and then folded the paper in half before cutting so that I knew one side wouldn't wind up looking wonky. 


I used my new pattern to cut out one of each of my fabrics and two of the batting. You could save yourself the next step and buy the pre-quilted fabric but this whole thing cost me less than $5 since I already had the batting and elastic. Remember when cutting your fabric and batting that you need to leave a seam allowance around the outside of your pattern. Otherwise you'll be sorely disappointed when it mysteriously doesn't fit. Feel free to include a seam allowance in your pattern if you want to be precise or if you have a tendency to be forgetful about those types of things.


You can skip this step if you bought the pre-quilted stuff but I needed to attach my batting to my fabric so I just pinned the pieces together and did a rough quilting pattern across the whole panel horizontally and then diagonally. It created a bit of a rhombus shape but it's been awhile since I've had a geometry class so I could totally be wrong about that.




Next I pinned the bias tape to the right side of the brown panel and then did a quick basting stitch around the whole thing. This will keep the piping in place when you are sewing both panels together since the piping will be sandwiched in between the panels. (Ignore the fact that the fabric below is not yet quilted. I had already taken this picture when I realized that I needed to do the quilting first.)






After basting on the piping I did a quick 1/2" hem on each panel. Just fold the right side under, press the hem, and then give a quick line of stitching from one end to the other.


The next thing you'll want to do is attach your zipper foot. It will allow you to get super close to the piping while stitching the panels together. Your machine should come with one of these. If for some reason it doesn't just see if you can change the position of your needle and align it as close to the left of the presser foot as possible. You can use the hand wheel to go up and down to make sure you aren't going to hit the foot as you sew your first stitch since we don't want to break any needles today. If you don't think you're going to get close enough for your taste then feel free to hand stitch this part.


It's around this time that these two woke up from their afternoon nap and decided to see what kind of mess I was making in the dining room. Check out that hair. Someone's got a serious case of bedhead.


Sam was going to be my assistant for this next step. You want to pin the two panels right sides together. The piping will be sandwiched between. And this is why you don't want to use batting that's too thick. You're going to feel your way along the piping as you slowly stitch around the sides and top of the panels. Keep the presser foot as close to the piping as you can.


Seriously, someone get this kid a hairbrush.


Alright. This is where things get a little weird. The top of the high chair tapers a little as it goes down to the seat. So the top of my pattern is wider than the opening. There are many ways to get around this dilemma and I chose elastic for two reasons: I already had the elastic and it only required about 2" worth and Sam had just woken up so I had to scrap my original plan of making cute little ties. You could skip the next step by making the bottom of your pattern as wide as the top and then just sew a casing in the bottom hem for a drawstring or elastic. But I did neither of these things because I didn't want the extra fabric bulk that the gathering would create. Flat and smooth, just like my belly used to be, you know, when I was 16.

Soooo, moving on. I stopped my stitching about an inch and a half from the bottom and stitched about an inch of elastic connecting the front panel to the back panel.



And TA-DA!!! My finished headrest cover.



Hey Momma! What is this thing???


So there you have it. A semi-padded high chair headrest cover. I decided I needed this thing when Sam started throwing a temper tantrum and banging his head against the high chair whenever I would refuse to let him have the spoon I was feeding him with. It's not padded enough that it won't hurt his noggin if he throws his head back hard but I don't want to teach him that it's ok to act that way so if it hurts a little I'm ok with that. How's he ever going to learn, right? The store-bought high chair covers run around $30 and cover the entire chair and that just sounds like a ton of laundry to me so I'm pretty happy with it.

Any tips for starting solids with an 8 month old? He's been doing it for around 2 months now and he's getting to the point where he wants to feed himself and there's only so many Cheerios you can give a kid. What worked for you with Revel and Ollie? I've already given up on keeping things super tidy while he eats so we've got that going for us. Thank goodness for dogs, right?