Sunday, October 30, 2011


I know that I've told y'all before, that I am responsible for the Staff Appreciation Lunches that our PTA puts on for our teachers. Our most recent one was this past Friday, and was unique in that it coincided with Field Day, which meant that the parents were invited to enjoy lunch with the staff. Given that it was Field Day, and we were still in the height of World Series fever here in Texas (yes, we were still blissfully unaware that the Rangers wouldn't win it .... sadly!!!), I decided to go for a sports theme. The centerpieces had me a little puzzled for a while .... but nothing that a google search couldn't fix. I found a picture of something similar to what I eventually made .... it was easy, and turned out to be quite cute, I think.

I cut a 8" strofoam ball in half and painted it - white for the baseball and orange for the basketball. A word of advice - if ever you want to paint styrofoam, just know that it takes A LOT of paint to get good coverage. Once dry, I painted on the markings of the balls. I cut squares of tissue paper, that I attached to the ball with floral pins. The plastic signs, I found in the section that sells the stuff for homecoming mums. I glued them to wooden skewers, and poked them in place. The ball figures are Christmas decorations, that I also glued a floral pin to, and poked into the ball. I pinned balloons into the center. The board, is just a cake board that I glued a 11/2" border of scrapbook cardstock around. I filled the board with spanish moss, to give the appearance of grass.
I think they would make great coaches gifts (or even a gift for a little sports fan), if you attached various bite size candies to skewers, and poked them into the ball at varying heights.

Well, tomorrow is Halloween ..... we're hosting a Halloween get together for our Cub Scout Den ... I'm busy thinking about creepy food, and exactly what I'm going to be making ...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


A friend of mines' sister is having a baby girl in the next few weeks - her baby shower was this Saturday past. There's something so sweet about a room decorated with all sorts of pretty pink goodies ... love it!!!
She had asked me a while back if I'd make her diaper bag for her. She wanted black and white toile, so that it would match her car seat and a few other items she has. It also meant that the new daddy could carry it and not feel uncomfortable.

The only toile I could find was at Joann's in the home decor section. The fabric was labelled dry clean only. However, I thought that as we had no choice, I'd get it and throw it in my washing machine and see how it stood up to washing ..... the answer - perfectly!!!
The bag is lined in the polka dot fabric. It has 2 elasticated pockets to hold bottles, a larger pocket to hold baby wipes, and then a few other smaller pockets for the bits and bobs you always need with a baby. This picture is atrocious, but it gives you an idea ....

The bags dimensions were 15"tall, 14" wide and 5" deep at the base. I also stiffened the base with a piece of plastic canvas between the outside fabric and the lining. I like the fact that it's a smaller diaper bag, but can still carry all you'll need. I remember when my kids were babies, the diaper bags we carried were huge and not very stylish at all.
Now on a totally different, non crafty subject, but newsworthy all the same .... and quite gross, depending on how you feel about fish. Boy Child pulled this monster out of our local pond on Saturday...

This flathead catfish - It weighed 17.7lbs and was 35 inches long!!!! He did it without any help - infact he was at the pond on his own. It took him 40 mins to get it onto land, and a very chewed up finger (he put his hand in its mouth in his excitment). He pulled it up, and then ran to call hubby (we only live 2 doors up from the pond), to come and take pictures of it. That son of ours certainly has some fishing talent!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011


When sending off a swap package ... any package infact, I like to send a handmade card with it. I also like to send alternatives to cards sometimes - that's if I can think of something suitable. One of my most recent packages is on its way to a swap buddy in New Zealand, who has a love for all things vintage, and who happens to do a LOT of sewing. Browsing through the pages of Graphic Fairys blog the other day, I came upon some gorgeous vintage postcard images... then the idea came to me - why not make her a useful postcard, and so this "postcard" is the result ...

A postcard needlecase!!!
So here's what I did .... I printed out the front and the back of the postcard on printable fabric. Using Staz On ink and alphabet stamps, I stamped my message on the postcard. I then used wool felt to make my needlebook. I ironed the front of the postcard onto the front of the needlebook and the reverse of the postcard onto the back ... popped it into an envelope, and that was it done.
This would make a fun little stocking filler for a stitching friend ... can you tell that my thoughts have already turned to Christmas.

Monday, October 17, 2011


Following on from yesterday's State Fair post ..... this was supposed to have been part of that same post, but blogger decided it had other plans, and wouldn't download the pictures!!!
After looking at row upon row, of bottled veggies, preserves and jams, I came upon the jellies - I was captivated by their colors and clarity. Not a spot of fruit pulp to be found in them. That was it - the challenge had been laid down - so, 5lbs of crab apples in hand, I got to it. Jelly has sealed it for me - I was born in the wrong era!!! The process of turning a bag of teeny, tiny, pink apples into the most gorgeous, pink, clear jelly has me enthralled - there was something very pioneer about it. My favorite part of the process - spooning the perfectly cooked apple pulp into a muslin bag (which I made using a flour sack dishtowel), hanging it, and watching as that juice, drip...drip...dripped into a glass bowl, undisturbed for 4 hours. A process not to be rushed, else you risk contaminating that clear juice with fruit pulp.The final result - jars of pink gorgeousness .... and it tastes yummy too.

Isn't it pretty?

I think pork chops will be on tonights dinner menu - Homemade Crab Apple Jelly may just be the perfect accompaniment:-)

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Last Sunday, we had a little outing to the State Fair. We hadn't been in a couple of years, and we had a great time. Some amongst us tried all those funny fair foods ... deep fried oreos (disgusting was the verdict), deep fried snickers bars (this one got a yummy) and deep fried smores (this was the winner for the day). Personally, deep fried any of those just doesn't do it for me.
We also had another reason for our visit ...

I entered an apron into the Creative Arts Competition ... and I won 2nd place!!! I was so excited, and it was lovely to see it displayed there, for all to look at:-)

These pictures aren't great, as they were taken through glass. As soon as I get it back, I'll take some better pictures and post them.
Looking at the handiwork of so many talented people was the highlight of the day for me. I was also quite amazed at how many men took part and won - especially in the quilting and cooking sections. Their work was very impressive.
I think I may have caught the State Fair bug .... I'm already thinking about what I'd like to enter next year.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I thought this was a really appropriate title to give this post ..... Mr Skelly Bones, looks like he's doing precisely that .... Just hanging out and chilling!!!
This is the Halloween wreath I made for our front door yesterday ...

It really was a super quick project. I had all of the stuff I needed to make it, right there in my stash ...yes, I do keep skelly bones and creepy spiders in my stash ..... that's what after holiday sales are for - aren't they?
I cut 2 inch wide strips of burlap in black and orange, and just tied them around the wreath, alternating the colors. Then using my hot glue gun, I posed Mr Skelly Bones in his "just chilling" pose, and stuck him down. I added 2 of his glittery arachnoid friends so he had company, and we were done.
Super quick, Super easy, and Super cute!!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


We have a school fundraiser event tomorrow ..... A softball game between a parent team and a staff team ..... GO TEAM PARENTS!!!
There will be other fun things to do too ... including a silent auction.
5th Grade (Boy Childs grade) was given the task of putting an auction item together .... I was asked to coordinate the effort. We decided a giftcard tree would be the way to go .... everyone can use giftcards, and they were easy for the parents to pick up and send to school with their kids.
And so, the money tree was born ...

The tree limbs were the sad remains of my hibiscus bush, that didn't survive the disgustingly hot Texas summer we had. I fixed it into a pot I picked up at Walmart using glass marbles and oasis. After trimming all the grucky end off it, I made some crepe paper leaves, which I glued onto the branches. I tied the giftcards onto the branches. I hid the ties by gluing crepe paper flowers over them.
I like the way it turned out ..... hopefully it goes for LOTS of money!!!!

Sunday, October 2, 2011


The process by which a perfectly sweet and cuddly little thing becomes an ugly zombie!!!!
This is what it looks like once the process is complete...

Not very pretty if I say so myself, but very zombie - ish.
This is the sweet little character Drimelda once was ...

She started life as Lurleen, the laundry monster.
This is where she can be found hanging out a lot of the time ...

She was the zombie doll I made for my partner in Yarnigras Zombie Doll Swap. I tried a few ideas before settling on this one .... my favorite by far. The original body shape pattern comes from one of my most favorite craft books ever - Rebbeca Dangers Big Book of Knitted Monsters. I did change her legs though, I think the longer legs with a proper foot suit her better (these legs were the same ones I used for Mumfsy ... you can read about him a few posts back). It meant that I could give her boots. For her hair, I sewed in strands of different yarns and fabric, ones I knew would tuft and fray, and just look completely dishevelled. Her dress, I made up as I went along. I used white cotton with a black lace overlay. It was a basic square that I cut armholes into, and then gathered at the neck. Her head piece is a length of lace tied in a bow, and finished off with a semi creepy spider .... it has a smile on its face, so it can't be considered totally creepy!!!
I hope my partner liked her .... truthfully, I found it a little difficult to send her on her way, because I really loved the way she turned out. I wonder if I could squeeze another one out of the yarn I have left .... Hmmm - I like that possibility!!!
I dare to say that Fall has eventually arrived here in the South .... the weather is gorgeous. Time to go and enjoy some outside time.
Have a wonderful Sunday.

Saturday, October 1, 2011


YOE II has once again been an absolute blast!!! It never fails to stretch my creative comfort zone, which I love. The theme for September was seedpods!!! I searched high and low to find just the perfect seedpod .... all the time, it was as close as my backyard.

The seedpod is off our wisteria bush. The shape lent itself to some kind of boat or garden scene, I thought. Next, was to decide what type of inhabitants should grace this space .... why, little mice of course. I lined the pod with spanish moss, and made the little guys and their tasty picnic snack, out of fimo clay. I used those whiskers you can get at your local craft store for their whiskers. I attached a clothes peg to the underneath of the pod, so that it can be clipped to the tree. Next up was this acorn, that Boy Child picked up at the fields where he plays soccer - I think it may have been last Fall - he was very impressed with the size of it. Well, it became an acorn fairy ...

I attached a wooden ball for her head, a paper flower from my scrapbook supplies as her hat. I delicately removed the wings off one of those craft butterflies ...(so sorry butterfly!!!), and they became her fairy wings. A little neckerchief around her neck, and she was done.
It's amazing what you can do with items you find lying around ... all it takes is a little imagination.
Well, it's October - I love this month for so many reasons!!!
It signals the end of the oppressive heat, we have here in Texas during the summer (let me tell you, this summer was a humdingger!!!).
It signals the beginning of what I've come to think of as The Holiday Season .... Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Halloween... Ahh, a new holiday to us when we moved her 6 years ago, but one I love. I think it's the fun nature of it that appeals to me:-) Today being October 1st, I will put out our Halloween decor .... now that the kids aren't little anymore, we'll be moving from the cutesy to a little more edgy ... not too scary mind you, their mama still does not do creepy very well!!!!