Earlier this week, I mentioned the trouble my son was having letting me go when I took him to school. Well, as suddenly as these emotional mornings started, they stopped! I couldn’t believe it! All of a sudden, instead of crying an hour before school starts, he gets ready and wants to leave an hour early, so he can start playing sooner! It’s been an amazing transformation! Yesterday, he even asked me to come into the classroom with him. I was hesitant, because the last time I went in with him, he clung to me and threw a huge fit when it was time for me to leave. This time, though, he showed me some things he’d been working on, with pride evident in his eyes. I was so filled with pride myself that I could barely speak! For all the mothers of new kindergarteners: Hang in there! It will be okay, and you’ll be amazed how quickly your child blossoms, right before your eyes! :)

It’s Friday again! My son has made it through his first full week of school, and I can’t wait for the long weekend, and an extra day to soak my sweet boy up!!

Have you heard of Aloha Friday? If not, you should go on over to An Island Life and see what it’s all about! It’s a great way to make new bloggy friends! Just post a question, and then visit the other participants’ blogs and answer their questions. Easy Peasy, and tons of fun!

Here’s My Question: What’s the strangest/funniest thing you’ve ever said to your kids while talking on the phone to someone else?

My Answer: The other day, I was talking to my mom (thank goodness it wasn’t a business contact!) and I found myself saying, “No, she can’t have a popsicle right now! Wait until she’s off the toilet!” My mom said, “You should write this stuff down!”

I’m sure you can figure out what was happening in the background while I was on the phone. My daughter was, obviously, on the toilet, minding her own “business,” and her older brother decided it was the perfect time to run to the freezer and grab a couple of popsicles (they always do that kind of stuff when mom’s occupied on the phone). I guess he didn’t realize that the toilet might not be the best spot to eat a popsicle!!

When my kids were in diapers, I struggled frequently with tough diaper rash. When my son was a year old, he had an allergic reaction to some cheap diapers that gave him the worst diaper rash imaginable! His poor little bottom was raw and red and peeling, with little red dots around the edges of the rash. When we took him to the doctor, she informed us that the allergic reaction had been aggravated by a yeast diaper rash, and recommended that we use over-the-counter steroid cream as a treatment. Eventually, the rash went away, but I’ll never forget how horrible it looked, or the profound sense of guilt I had, even though the rash wasn’t really my fault.

When my daughter came along, she frequently had yeast diaper rashes, but I knew enough to buy the over-the-counter cream before the rash became too horrible. Still, with just steroid cream as a treatment, that pesky rash kept creeping back. It never went away for good until she was potty trained. I got to the point where I felt there was nothing I could do to completely tackle that rash!

I wish that Vusion ointment had been around when my kids were in diapers! Vusion is a new treatment for yeast diaper rashes that is so effective it can be obtained through prescription only. It’s also gentle enough that it has been approved by the FDA to treat babies as young as four weeks old, which is how old my daughter was when her first round of yeast diaper rash cropped up. It would have been so nice to be allowed to stop worrying about diaper rashes and focus on other, happier things, like spending guilt-free time with my kids! If your baby has a rash that just won’t go away, ask your doctor about Vusion ointment!

Thanks to MomCentral, for allowing me the chance to help spread the word about Vusion Ointment. Click here to download a coupon for Vusion Ointment.

Last week, I spent way too much time on Craftster, but I found a really cool hoodie tutorial that I just had to try. It took me about three hours, total, which I spread out over a few days. I think it turned out very nicely, if I do say so myself! I found this oh-so-cute fabric at Wal-Mart for $2 a yard. Here’s a full-body shot:

My only complaint is that the fabric turned out to be quite thin, and since I was making a jacket, I wanted it to be fairly warm, so I had to double up the fabric. This caused me to run out of fabric at the very end, and I couldn’t make the hood quite a slarge as I wanted. Next time, I think I’ll try fleece or sweatshirt fleece. I promised my son I’d make him a hoodie some time soon!

Total cost: $6

For the hoodie tutorial I used, click here.

One certain kitchen cupboard has really been getting on my nerves for the last few days. My husband it a chronic junk food eater (somehow, he never seems to gain a pound!!) and buys tons of chips, but never eats the last quarter of the bag because he “doesn’t like the crumbles!” And instead of throwing them away or feeding them to the birds or ants, he just leaves the bags in the cupboard until I get tired of it a few weeks later and throw all his “crumbles” out. I was seriously running out of room in my cupboard. Here’s what it looked like:

 

After only about 5 minutes of organizing and throwing crud out, it looked much nicer:

My son will be starting kindergarten in three weeks! Where has the time gone??!? It seems like just yesterday that I was coming home with a tiny baby boy, terrified and elated at the same time. My heart aches but also swells with pride when I think about how fast he has grown. It it common for mothers to be so torn between to extreme feelings? I dread his first day of school, but at the same time, I know how excited he is, and how much he will learn and grow through his school experiences, and I can’t help but be excited for him.

He had his first eye exam on Saturday, and found out that he has to get glasses. We chose to visit the Opthamologist at Wal-Mart, so I could keep Little Sis busy while Dadd went in the back room with Big Brother. When the exam was done, Little Sis and I went to meet “the boysies” as she calls them. My swet little boy was in tears, after hearing that he’d have to wear glasses! Such a sensitive soul!! We let him pick the coolest glasses available, and did our best to reassure him that he looked super hunky (which he did). I think he’s feeling better now.

Then, yesterday, after hanging on to his old car seat for so long, we convinced him to let us remove the straps so that he could use it as a booster seat. He actually cried! I guess it was too much growing up in two days! It was too much for me too. To make my heartache even more bittersweet, my not-so-little boy turns six on Wednesday!!!

Someday, we’ll get a scanner, and I can show off pics of what a beautiful baby he was. Here’s a photo of him two years ago (look at those chubby cheeks!):

Does every mother experience this intense mixture of happy and sad when her first baby goes off to school???

Happy Friday!!

Yesterday, since it was a very rainy day, I decided to finish a handbag I’d previously started. Since I already had about 1/3 of the project completed, I whipped this baby up in about an hour. I LOVE it!! (It looks a bit funky here, because it’s hanging from a doorknob, but it’s so blasted difficult to take a picture of my own shoulder!)

It’s made out of an old skirt that my husband’s grandma wore as a young woman. Isn’t the fabric fantastic? I learned the basics of making a handbag when I made the Pleated Beauty Bag from Bend-the-Rules Sewing. So, for this bag I didn’t use a pattern. I just cut out a shape I thought would be nice and mae sure all the pieces were the same size. It was remarkably easy!

I lined and faced the bag with white cotton felt and put a cell phone-sized pocket on the inside. It’s just the right size for me!! Here’s the best part: Total Cost: $0!!

 

Some day soon, I might post a tutorial about making handbags, but I need to score some more fabulous fabric first. (Try saying that five times fast!) I think this may be the beginning of a new handbag fetish for me. And why not, when I can make them myself?!?

 

Thanks to Tracey at Crazy Beautiful, who tagged me for this meme!

Here’s the Four Things Tag:

Four jobs I’ve had:

  • Library Clerk
  • Cook at Retirement Facility
  • Lackey at a Garden Center
  • Salesperson at J.C. Penney 

Four movies I can watch over and over:

  • Napoleon Dynamite
  • Dirty Dancing
  • A Christmas Story 
  • The Fifth Element 

Four places I’ve lived:

  • Lincoln, Nebraska 
  • Orleans, Nebraska 
  • Norfolk, Nebraska
  • Beaver Crossing, Nebrask (boring, aren’t I?)

Four TV shows I love:

  • My Name is Earl
  • Eureka on Sci-Fi
  • Chowder on Cartoon Network
  • The Soup on E!

Four places I’ve vacationed:

  • Canada
  • York Beach, Maine
  • Northern California 
  • Mount Rushmore

 

  • Four of my favourite dishes:
  • Pumpkin Pie (does that count as a dish?)
  • Sweet Potatoes with Bourbon Sauce
  • Lasagna 
  • Anything with chocolate

Four sites I visit daily:

Four places I would rather be right now:

  • On a tropical beach 
  • Curled up with a good book 
  • A fat-free bakery whose creations tasted heavently (as if!) 
  • ANYWHERE quiet!! ;)

 

I tag the following people for this:

I have posted before about my love of freezer paper stencilling. Well, I’ve been at it again, and this time I decided to make a T-shirt that was very personalized and precious to me. I was browsing through Flickr the other day, and was inspired by this photo. I decided to make myself a T-shirt, using my kids’ silhouettes as a freezer paper stencil. Here’s how I did it:

Things You’ll Need:

  • Children, or other semi-cooperative photo subjects
  • Digital Camera
  • Printer
  • Freezer Paper (found in grocery store, near aluminum foil and plastic wrap)
  • Pen or pencil that draws crisp lines
  • Tape
  • X-Acto Knife with sharp blade
  • Old magazine or large, thick piece of cardboard
  • Iron
  • T-Shirt of your choice
  • Fabric paint of your choice

 

  • First, I had to get my children to sit still long enough for me to snap a photo of them. My daughter just barely cooperated! When taking photos for silhouettes, there are a couple of things to remember. Don’t cut off any body parts. The silhouette will look strange if your child is missing a hand or foot! Make sure your children aren’t holding their hands in front of their bodies, or the silhouette will look weird, too. The biggest rule is to try to look at the photo as if it were a silhouette. Does it look good that way??? Then use it! Here’s the photo I used (don’t they look so thrilled to pose for me?): 

                                                                                                      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • After you’ve snapped a photo that you’re pleased with, load it onto your computer and print it off on regular computer paper. Photo paper is too thick for the next step. For my shirt, I cropped the photo down as much as possible, and then selected a 5×7″ print size.
  • Find a fairly sunny window and tape the printed photo onto the glass. Tear off a comparable-sized sheet of freezer paper and tape it on top of the photo in the window, shiny side down (you’ll be drawing on the dull side). Make sure to tape it down flat, or your freezer paper will move around, and you’ll end up with a very funky silhouette! Use a pen (or pencil, if you’re more comfortable) to trace your child’s silhouette. Take your time to make sure you get it right. Trust me, you want to be slow and steady for this job! Here’s what my children’s silhouette’s looked like, after tracing:

  • Now, you’ll need to use your X-Acto knife to cut out the silhouettes. Place the freezer paper on your old magazine or cardboard now, because you X-Acto knives are very sharp and will cut through the table underneath! When cutting, pay extra attention to detail and, once again go slowly! If you have any spots (between arms or fingers, especially) that will need to remain the same color as the T-Shirt, don’t forget to save them! For example, look at the left side of my children’s silhouettes. See that little space between my daughter’s side and her arm? I saved the small piece of freezer paper I cut out there, because the silhouette wouldn’t look as good without it.
  • Once you’ve cut out the silhouette, it’s time to adhere your stencil to your shirt. Place the shirt on a flat, heatproof surface. Plug in your iron and smooth out any wrinkles. Now, place the stencil in wherever you want it. Make sure to place the stencil shiny side down, or it will stick to the iron instead of your shirt! Once your stencil is situated, it’s time to iron it, which will cause it to stick to the shirt. Make sure you get all the edges. I’ve found that about 20-30 seconds is usually enough ironing. If you have any small pieces of freezer paper saved (such as the space between my daughter’s arm and her side), place them on now (shiny side down) and iron until they stick.
  • Next, tear off another sheet of freezer paper that’s slightly larger than the stencil. Place this new sheet inside the shirt, shiny side up. This will keep the paint from running through onto the back of your shirt. Now, iron the shirt once again, so the two freezer paper layers will stick in place.
  • Paint a thin layer of your chosen paint over the stencil. Use just enough to get an even layer. Too much paint will result in a sloppy-looking stencil. Here’s what my stencil looked like, after painting:

  • Wait several hours (over night is best!) before peeling the stencil off. This may be the hardest part, but it’s worth it! Removing the stencil before the paint is totally dry might ruin the whole thing!
  • After several hours (or over night), peel the freezer paper off. Tweezers are helpful to remove small pieces. If your paint has any special instructions (iron to set, etc.), now would be time to follow those instructions. Here’s what my finished stencil looked like:

  • Enjoy your unique keepsake T-shirt. I really feel that mine is priceless. I’m going to wear it all the time, even when my kids are teenagers and are mortified!! Here’s another look at my finished T-shirt:

 If you’d like to share your how-to knowledge and have a chance to win a $30 Amazon gift card, check out the Group Writing Project, hosted by An Island Life.

The Essential Guide to a Whole New Way to SewRecently, I bought Bend the Rules Sewing  (Potter Craft, 2007) by Amy Karol, and I’m in love! I plan to make quite a few of the projects in this great book! If you’re a beginning or intermediate sewer, I strongly recommend this book! Even if you’re an old pro, it might be worth taking a look at because there are some really cool and cute projects in here!

 

This week, I embarked on my first really big sewing project since high school! I made the Pleated Beauty Handbag from Bend the Rules Sewing. I’m really happy with the way it turned out, but now that it’s done I realize how big it is! Since I haven’t carried a purse in ages, and I no longer need a diaper bag, I don’t have enough stuff to fill it up! I guess I’ll have to make another bag.  Darn! (he he he)  ;)

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