Our Thanksgiving really was nice. We got our holiday decorations out and little g's Nannie explained the Santa Claus stuff to her. She wrote a letter to him right away. I wonder where all those letters end up?
Our neighbors made a Tofurkey, I've never had one and they're not bad. You can actually make roast potatoes with them! A big thanks to them for everything. c.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
The following is my post on Wit-Craft, Craft: Stop Thief!
I live with a professional criminal. A very skilled sock-stealer to be exact. Our dog has spent the last 8 years perfecting her stealth-like, sock-stealing skills. And unfortunately, what we are always left with is one good sock and one with a hole chewed right through it.
When I came across this book in the craft section of a store, a light bulb went off in my head! It gave me the perfect idea of how to turn all our single socks into something useful. I didn't buy the book (because it's on my wish list); but I had an old issue of Martha Stewart Kids from 2003, which had a similar pattern inside that I loosely followed for this project.
The diagram above is my attempt to help you follow along!
Here's what you will need:
2 socks (the same size)
Needle and thread to match.
First, sew the main body and leg pieces. They need to be sewn inside out, leaving a big enough gap for you to be able to turn the socks the right side out after sewing. Once this is done, you can stuff those pieces.
After you are done stuffing, you can then close the gap.
Next, sew the two front legs in exactly the same way, then stuff, and then attach them to the body.
Once you have done this, you can place the head on to the neck and attach the bottom of the head to the body.
Make sure to stuff this piece from the front of the face and then sew it together.
After this, I sewed the ears and then attached them without any stuffing - for more of a floppy look.
Finally I used some embroidery floss to create the the eyes and mouth. c.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Shrinky Dinks why didn't I think about you sooner? One of my favorite childhood craft projects was staring me in the face at Joann's the other day. I can assure you that the magic of Shrinky Dinks is alive and well based on the effect it had on little g. and my neighbor's kids. Lots of necklaces and tree ornaments were made today. c.
Monday, November 24, 2008
I can no longer live in denial about Winter. We have snow on the ground this morning and Thanksgiving is only a few days away. It's time to embrace the season.
Our obsession with polar bears continues. You may remember my holiday card. I can't believe I was thinking about this back in August. I've put together a set of 3 designs based on Lee the polar bear we saw at the zoo over the Summer. I might put a few sets up in our Etsy shop later this week. c.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I want to ask you, what is more wonderful than an avocado?
Miss Laura B's Most Awe Inspiring Guacamole:
2 ripe to perfection avocados
1 cup (at least) of delicious cilantro, avoid stems
1/2 bell pepper
1 small tomato diced
You know the drill, mush up your avocados with a fork in a bowl. In the blender, blend cilantro, bell pepper, onion and the juice from 1 lime. Add two or three tablespoons (or more) of this mixture to the avocado and stir. You'll want to freeze the rest of the blended stuff. Toss in a handful of tomatoes and stir some more. Add salt to taste. Now try not to eat the entire bowl! c.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
The following is my post on Wit-Craft, Craft: Bags from Bags
This project has been on my mind for a while now because I think it is totally brilliant. It involves taking old plastic grocery store bags and creating a whole new material from them. One of the many things you can do with this material is create a reusable shopping bag.
You can either follow along with my directions or follow along with the tutorial that I used for the project here.
What you will need:
Flimsy store bags (like grocery stores or target)
Iron (I set mine to rayon with no steam)
Cut up the bags so they will lay flat and remove the handles. If you use a bag with printing on it you should turn it inside out because the ink can get messy. Layer the bags 8 thick. You can place items under the top layers - like paper cut outs. I found that smaller items worked best if they were made of paper. You could also draw right on the bags using permanent marker to make a design or cut interesting shapes out of plastic bags, to layer in, as a design element. I placed one layer of parchment paper below the bags and one layer on top. I then ironed over the parchment - being careful to keep the iron moving. I then flipped the whole thing over and ironed the back as well. I found it crucial to remove the paper AFTER it had totally cooled down.
Once this is done, you can then trim the edges to square off the material. I folded mine in half and fused the sides with the iron.
For a more professional look you can always use a sewing machine!
This is an easy and very satisfying project. It really made me feel like I was winning on the recycling front. I think I'm going to make more than a few of these to hand out to anyone who will take one. c.
Monday, November 17, 2008
We are one of the many families that are scaling back this year. We never really over did the holiday gift giving but this year we are really thinking things through, making things by hand when we can and making sure that what we do purchase is worthwhile.
We went to the children's museum over the weekend. Looks like we have a little builder on our hands because little g. played obsessively with these really fun Magna Tiles. I think these tiles have made our holiday shopping list along with a magnifying glass. One of the other gift qualifications I have for my 3-year-old is the captivation factor. Will the toy keep her busy for a day, a month or a year? If only someone could measure that on the box right next to the age appropriate info things would be a lot easier. c.
Friday, November 14, 2008
My daughter has developed an obsession with tea and I'm totally convinced it's her English side coming through. She's a purist too, no sugar or milk. I wasn't even introduced to tea until I was an adult. I suppose it can't hurt to give her a bit here and there of decaffeinated tea. Yikes! c.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
I hate to think how much I talk about, think about and drink coffee. At least I don't spend all our money on Starbucks anymore thanks to my Nespresso machine. However, I usually get one or two eggnog lattes from there every holiday season. You either love or hate eggnog. When I stop and think about it, it is pretty gross but mixed with coffee it tastes soooo good.
I forgot to post how amazing my barberry bushes looked just before yesterdays frost. c.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
We had our first hard frost here last night. Now we are rid of all the mosquitoes, flies and flees. I'm trying to keep positive about the cold this winter and that's the only thing I could come up with.
I'm excited that Lindsay is now blogging. I'll be contributing one recycling craft project a week to the Wit-Craft blog. Over the weekend I made caps for babies born in Haiti out of clothes little g has outgrown for the Caps to Cap-Haitien Project. I don't have to stretch too far to feel positive about that. c.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Friday, November 7, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Maybe we will finally commit this date to memory. We should be able to by now, it's been 15 years, but for some reason it's the subject of debate every single year. "Is it the 6th or the 9th? Has it been 14 years of 15?" People typically look at us like we are crazy. How can you not know the date you got married? I don't know how to explain this except to say that the date is just a technicality and it's not that important to us. It might also have something to do with the fact that we had an extremely small and informal wedding. Just the two of us, with two witnesses and a female lawyer to officiate in a park near our apartment. It was actually a really nice way to get married.
So here's our wedding party invitation from 1994 that I did my first year of art school. I'm actually more bothered by the bad design and type treatment than I am by our dated hair styles and my horrible make-up. It's a collage I made using Photoshop version 1.0, copied and cut at Kinkos and inspired by the rave fliers that were all over the streets of London at the time. That seems more crazy than forgetting the date every year. It was a really fun party though! c.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
I'm off to vote today and it feels pretty darn good. Now I'm just hoping I feel that good tomorrow when it's all (finally) over.
I'm keeping my fingers crossed that California votes No on Proposition 8.
Can't think about much else today. I'm on the edge of my seat... until tomorrow.
Monday, November 3, 2008
We went to a birthday party over the weekend and gave two of our favorite books. If you have a young child on your holiday gift list you might want to consider these beautifully drawn charming tales. The first book is Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers. This is about a little penguin that is lost and found by a little boy and their journey to get him back home. Children love stories about being lost and then found, (Disney based their empire off that theme), and this book is so touching and sweet. Oliver Jeffers' paintings are really wonderful too, you can find those here. The second is the classic The Sun Egg by Elsa Beskow. The illustrations and story telling of Elsa Beskow are just so fantastic. In this book we have a little fairy who thinks she has found an egg dropped by the sun. These books really capture our imagination and little g. loves to have them read to her.
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Saturday, November 1, 2008
We had absolutely beautiful weather here for Halloween and it felt like the whole neighborhood was outside. Little g. went to school as a princess. In the afternoon we had the nicest time with our lovely neighbors. The photo of the 3 of them on the couch was a very happy and content moment. She wouldn't wear her costume by the time trick-or-treating rolled around and insisted on her silver party dress. About five minutes into the struggle I thought what the heck, you'll just be your own princess. c.