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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Big Al's Big Girl Bedroom

I keep telling myself that I am not attached to the house where I am currently living.  That it is just a temporary place for my family to stay until we are able to move into our "real home".   But there is one room in the house that I am very attached to, and that is my daughter Allison's room. 

Allison will turn 4 years old this weekend.  She doesn't know it, but she is getting a Frozen comforter and sheet set for her big girl bed.  She has seen it in the stores and over my shoulder when I was stalking it on a variety of websites.  She knows it exists and always asks if she is getting it.  It will really transform the look of her room from a baby's room into a little girl's room.  She'll still have the quilt that my mom made for me when I was in middle school, but the new comforter will make the difference. 

I have been painting and varnishing an IKEA toy organizer (it's now pink) and also searching for a new dresser and bookshelf for her.  I am convinced that I will be able to find the same style of furniture that I had when I was little.  It was that white French provincial little girls bedroom set that Sears used to sell.  I don't think she needs the canopy bed, but I sure want the dresser and the desk.  I am close to finding it.  It will be mine.  Hers. 

When I was pregnant and registering for my baby shower,  I chose to register for furniture that was a medium cherry color.  What was I thinking???  I wasn't.  I blame it on baby brain.  I will soon be painting it all off white or a traditional ivory.  Allison is excited to about the color change and enjoys our many trips to pick out paint chips.  Wish me lots of luck on painting.  Pinterest has given me too many ideas.  Let's hope it doesn't turn into a "Pinterest Fail".

It's taken a long time for the transformation of her room to happen.  Little by little, I have been making changes.  It's finally time to take down the Pooh Bear decals and accept that she has her own dreams and ideas of what her room should look like! 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


Happy New Year!  Best Wishes for an exciting 2014!

New Year's Eve has become a quiet evening for us.  Now that the little one is here, we don't go out anymore.  We like to stay in and have several different appetizers for snacks and watch movies as a family.  That seems much more important than being out on the roads on one of the craziest nights of the year.

This year I wanted to make New Year's Resolutions that were practical so that I could stick with them and actually accomplish them.  Instead of my usual list containing ten or so resolutions, I only came up with five.  I figured that five would be much more attainable than ten.  Here is my list:

Polish my nails

I made a promise to myself that I would at the very least keep clear polish on my nails.  I wash my hands so much that my nails break extremely easy.  I managed to keep this up for the first month and a half.  Since then it has been inconsistent, hit or miss, but I am still trying to do remember to do this for myself.  It just makes me feel better.

De-clutter, organize and refresh the house

A huge undertaking, yet it is slowly and surely happening.  The organizing and de-cluttering is going well.  At least with mine and my daughter's things.  Maybe not so much with my husband's stuff.  One step at a time.  This is an ongoing,  life-long project. 

I'm trying to do low cost or no cost projects to spiff up the appearance of our older and tired looking house.  It could be cute with some smart effort.  We recently got a new roof (big expense, but long overdue).  I desperately want to paint our front door.  This needs to be done when the weather is warmer. 

I am currently obsessed with "Chalk Paint".  I want to use it to paint everything I can.  It just makes furniture look clean and crisp!  I think my first project will be the vanity in our half bath.  We don't plan to stay in this house much longer, but I can't take the ugliness of the d├ęcor any longer.  Stay tuned for Operation: Paint Can 2014. 

Lose 20 pounds

Oopsie.  Make that 25 pounds.  I should start a professional yo-yo dieter's club.  Every year since the birth of my daughter I have managed to lose and regain the same 10 pounds.  I'm so frustrated.  I can't find my groove and I need to.  Temptation surrounds me. 

I know I can do this.  I have to.  I have a closet full of clothes that I would really love to wear again.  It also sets a positive example for my daughter if I take the time to take care of myself! 

Sew more

I love being creative.  I have so many projects in my cue.  I love the feeling of accomplishment when I complete something. 

Blog more

I used to write all the time.  I really enjoy reading other people's blogs.  Maybe someone will find some inspiration in something I have to share.

Again, best wishes to everyone for a very Healthy, Happy and Successful 2014!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Just breathe!

As usual, I ran behind schedule for Christmas.  (With the exception of two gifts that I completed months ago.)  My sewing machine is not really sewing at all.  It's just mostly sewing knots.  I had sewing intentions for several special people and I am thinking they will end up getting Happy New Year gifts instead!


(These tension problems are for the birds.  To take this in for repair would cost almost as much as a new machine.)
I really don't like being late when it comes to Christmas gifts, because I feel like I let people down.  I think we sometimes get so caught up in all of the other "extra" stuff that we lose sight about the season.  Sometimes you just have to say "enough".  And that's where I was at!

I finally came into the frame of mind that "what I get done is what I get done"!  I gave myself permission to relax and not stress about what still needed to happen.  Instead of worrying about what I didn't get done, I focused on spending time with my family. 

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Cinnamon Coffee Treat

I love my morning coffee.  I love it with half and half creamer and especially with fancy flavored creamer.  I am certain I am addicted to Pumpkin Spice and Peppermint Mocha flavored creamers!  I found this recipe for Cinnamon Coffee on McCormick's website.  There is also a McCormick Spice board on Pinterest

This is the recipe from , however, I find it to be too sweet with a 1/4 cup brown sugar, so I have only been using 1 tbsp. of brown sugar and it turns out just right for my tastes!

Makes 6 (1-cup) servings.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Christmas Birdie Pillow Covers

I fell in love with this Michael Miller fabric.  It's called  "Pretty Bird" and I bought it from several months ago. It reminds me of the vintage red bird clip ornament that my parents always put on our Christmas tree every year when I was growing up. 

As usual, I bought the fabric without having a project in mind.  Then one night while looking through sewing blogs, I came across a super easy tutorial for envelope back pillow covers on Cluck Cluck Sew.  I seriously adore this sewing blog!!!  This tutorial is actually for a scrapbuster project (that I have also made), but I adapted it to make my pillow covers.

I am really happy with the way these turned out.  They look great on my couch and they look great on my chairs!  My mom came over the other day and she was really impressed with them. 

The fabric for the back is also Michael Miller.  Two pieces are cut to make an envelope back.  Did I mention I like Michael Miller Fabrics?  I sort of have a thing about it! :) 

I have so many sewing projects planned.  Here's hoping that my sewing machine can keep up with my big plans for just a little while longer!  My machine seems to be having some serious tension issues and I am not sure if it is really worth it to take it in for repair. 

I really do not like when this happens.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Sewing Related Injuries

I had no idea that sewing was so dangerous!  But then again, I should know I am bound to get hurt.  I am, after all, me.

Rotary cutter - 1 injury.

I owned my rotary cutter less than a week when I accidently lightly brushed my finger against the blade.  Trust me, it's very sharp and cuts through flesh quicker than your brain can keep up with.  It's  a clean, deep cut that will cause your finger to throb all night long.  You will lose sleep because of the intensity of the throbbing.  The also cuts fabric like a dream!  I prefer it over scissors any day!  Note to self:  Be careful and mindful at all times when using a rotary cutter.

Pin sticks - already too many to remember. 

Burns from ironing - 2. 

I wondered if my iron was getting hot enough.  Yep, it sure does get hot enough!  I've got the scars to prove it.  One scar is very large and might be with me for quite some time.

Seam Ripper-1. 

I managed to stab myself in the area of connective flesh between your thumb and your pointer finger.  It hurts really bad!  I still have nightmares.

Friday, October 18, 2013


My little person started pre-school last month.  She loves it!  Everyone is her friend.  I love it.  I love all the kids.  I love all the families.  Most importantly, I love the teacher,  Mrs. Powers.  Allison calls her "Super Powers".   It's a co-op pre-school and that means that at least twice a month, I get to help out in the classroom.

The first day went off without a hitch.  Not a single tear was shed by Allison.  As the teacher opened the door to the classroom, she was blowing bubbles and the kids just all ran to her and into the classroom they all went.  Allison never even looked back for me.  Which is awesome (and scary) when you think about it.  She's secure enough to just go off and explore new things without me.  Maybe I am doing something right after all!

How did I do?  As well as you can expect.  I love that little girl so much.  I am happy that she is growing up and is getting to experience so many different new things!  But that morning when I woke her up, we talked about school and she told me she was going to miss me.  Then during breakfast, she suddenly turned to me and said "I can't do this without you".  I went into the kitchen where she couldn't see me and cried. 

All is well for me now.  I still get a little choked up when I go to pick her up from school on a day that I am not working.  She runs to me and jumps into my arms she is so happy to see me.  I think the time apart from each other does us both a lot of good.  I always look forward to time to myself, but the moment I am away from her, I miss her!

On Tuesday, we took our first field trip.  Her class went to the cider mill.  We took a tractor ride, went to the apple orchards and Allison got to pick two apples, then we went to the pumpkin patch and she got to pick out a sweet little pumpkin.  And of course, we had cider and donuts.  

Yesterday in school, we made applesauce.  Some of the kids ate as many apples as they helped to cut up.  Allison really enjoyed the activity, applesauce is one of her favorites.  (It's something that I can remember doing in first grade.)  We are going to make it at home this weekend.