Thursday, October 8, 2009

For a rainy day...

One thing that is important to me is being prepared for a rainy day. This involves food storage, a subject I am passionate about.

When I mention food storage to people I get different responses, blank stares, lifted eyebrows, excuses why they aren't storing food for their families, you name it. My favorite response was when we moved to Asheville. We had some great friends help us move our stuff. And when they moved out our big buckets they were like "what the heck is this?" When we told them, they wanted to open it up and "See the wheat"!

Also, when food storage is mentioned people think you are a little coo-coo! Let me 'splain, I am not talking about Armageddon or the End of the world people! I am talking about everyday things like, running out of money before the next pay check, or losing a job, or sickness and not being able to cook, things like that.

I get a lot of "I know where I am coming remarks". Let me warn you: Those comments upset me! I have to admit that, because I have worked hard for 8 years to learn how and what to store, so what gives you the right... Okay, stepping off the soap box.

Anyway, I found a great deal last fall at a goodwill store, and I finally used it: A $3.00 dehydrator that works like a charm! I dehydrated 3 pints of strawberries (it whittled them down to about 1 cup once dry, I am not joking, jam is a much better option quantity wise!)

But, it smelled so heavenly!

So, if you are reading this, what is one thing you can think of to do to make your family more secure in these tough times? Thoughts? What are you making or doing I want to know, click on the comment button and let us all know what great ideas you have to share.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Squeeky Clean

Here are some scrumptious pictures!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Vintage Photos

I found this link to a site that makes pictures look vintage. It is really quite cool. Just make sure if you are using digital files that you save a copy of the original to fool around with!


Here is the site.

You just browse to your copied picture and press convert and this is what it will do, it is fun for framed images etc, it would be especially cool of your childhood home or favorite pet or something...

Monday, October 5, 2009

Giddy'up Lil Cowgirl

Our stake (this is the LDS church's name for a regional group of congregations) had a great activity recently. A huge swap! You brought whatever you wanted to get rid of(in good clean condition of course), then you were able to look around and see if there was anything you needed/wanted from other people. I got some great sewing supplies, children's books and this little rocking horse.

I repainted it with my 1.00 mis-mixed paint that I have used for about 15 projects and counting. That way it would be more stream-lined and match our black furnishings. Gotta love free!

Before and After:

It is already popular with the local wildlife!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The most wonderful time of the year

No, I don't mean Christmas. I mean FALL! Don't you just love the change from hot dreary days to breezy days and crisp nights. Watching the beautiful array of colors splash the landscape. Sitting around a fire in your backyard roasting marshmallows (If I were in Utah I'd roast them up in the canyon...)

I love fall it is my favorite time of year. You can still be outside. The excitement of the new school year hasn't quite worn off. You can layer your clothing and dress really smart. OH! I love it.
Here are some great Halloween Decor Ideas: All but one are care of Martha Stewart!

The pumpkin above with the holes has been an idea that I've wanted to use for years. You clean it out cut holes and rub the inside with cinnamon then light a candle and you get instant holiday fragrance for your home.
The orange pumpkin jars are old kitchen jars they painted the inside and added face stickers to.
The rest are mostly self explanatory and are just some fun ideas!
Lastly, the picture below is from Lowes. They are tomato cages wrapped with Christmas lights, then a cloth over with a face drawn on there in permanent marker. Fun huh!

I would walk 500 miles...

And now I'll walk 500 more cuz guess what I got?

A treadmill!

I am so excited, our neighbors got a new treadmill and they put theirs outside to sell it on Saturday, and I sent Justin over to see what they were doing with it. I told him, if they are selling it, I'd pay $30.00 for it.

Well he let them know, that if they didn't hear anything else durring the day he'd take. And a few hours later, I had a brand new (to me) treadmill. And its the kind that folds up!

So I guess I have no excuse not to exercise! I should have thought about that before...

So tell me, what good deals have you been able to find in your life?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Blessing Dress

When my mom visited us back in early August right after Etta was born, she did a lot of sewing for me. She fixed pant hems, re-sized a few of Justin's work shirts, finished a little pinafore dress I had begun and much more! Thanks again Mom!

On top of all that, we devised the plan for Etta's blessing dress, shopped for supplies and patterns and began the actual dress.

We had no real idea of what we were looking for when we went. And, to be honest, our ideas were sketchy at best when we left. But we were armed and dangerous, with a bag full of beautiful eyelet fabric, some sheer pink ribbon, a Butterick Pattern #B4964, an Australian Smocking Magazine, some delicate tiny lace, blush pink embroidery floss, and tiny pearlescent buttons, Whew!

(the smocking article I used is on page 42,
the little denim jacket)
We ended up taking elements from the different patterns and things we liked. My mom is a sewing genius, and can really manipulate patterns, she also sized it to fit Etta perfectly.
The truth is my mom did all the hard work! She made the bodice, it was her idea to put the eyelet fabric on its side there, which was a really nice detail. The sleeves are exquisite. She cut the last inch of the Eyelet lacy bottom off, and sewed it on as lace, to match the bottom of the skirt. That way she was able to use the portion of the fabric that had the lace put in it, on the sleeve and it all worked more cohesively. Then she gathered the lace we had bought, (I would never had thought of this), but it really made it that much more rich. Then she hand sewed the lace to the neck. She made the little skirt placket and did the button holes, and made the lining. Basically the truth is she made the dress. I love it!!!! I had her sign the lining skirt and date it, and I am going to embroider that into the dress for Etta.

Okay, so if she did all that what the heck did I do? Good question, I watched and held the baby mostly! Then after she went home, I had a finished bodice and the skirt fabric. I took the skirt to a fabric store and had them pleat it for me so that I could hand smock it. (That is the embroidery over fabric pleats. It was the old fashioned way to create stretch in fabric before they had elastic. It is also very beautiful.)
It was so fun to do, I plan on doing it again soon. (In fact, that version of the magazine had a dress that would be prefect for Etta's first birthday) We decided to fly out to Utah and chose to have the blessing there with our family. It was perfect cuz my Mom was able to help me finish putting it all together, then I strung the ribbon through the skirt and tacked it in place. Here is the finished product:
I also went out and purchased that funny little bonnet. It was already smocked in white. So, I smocked over it in the same colors as the dress, so it would match. And replaced the existing ribbon with the same ribbon we had on the dress.

I also made a special white blessing blanket. For those crocheters out there it was so easy and is really quite pretty. I got the idea from my friend Jennifer J.'s grandmother. Here is the basic pattern. Slip stitch the length of the finished product. The second line and all following rows: all you do is single crochet, triple crochet, repeat all the way to the end. I started and finished each row with a single crochet. That is it. Technically I ran out of time. The blanket is not quite finished. But I plan on binding it of with a light pinkyarn, in a little scallop!
Technically these are Etta's 2nd month birth anniversary pictures. We had a lot of technical difficulties. Crying babies, crying, crying, bad light and I tryed three seperate times. I have decided that they are good enough. All I really need is one good picture and I have pics of her in the dress, and she'll have the actual dress, good enough right? (Okay, so I may try one more time...later) Anyway, here are the pics.
P.S. I have decided that for each child I plan on making a special blessing outfit for each of them to keep and have as a special childhood memento.

Cute little chubby fingers!
Here are some of the details, I just love her little arm in it,
especially that little dimple by her elbow!
This is what tummy time looks like when we don't use the boppy pillow.
It sounds like a very MAD screaming baby! I just think the picture is funny!