Friday, September 25, 2009

Friday's Fix-up: my cheap idea almost worked

My bathroom has absolutely no decorations. None! It doesn't even have a nice shower curtain, just a very bland cream colored plastic one. The closest thing to any type of decoration is the light fixture. It has yellow roses. So I thought I'd go with that theme. I like yellow bathrooms.
Last week I found a flat sheet at a thrift store with yellow roses on it that match the light fixture almost exactly. It cost $1.27.

So I planned to make it into a nice shower curtain to cover up the bland plastic one. It was going to be so beautiful! And then I washed and dried it...........with a blue crayon!!!

Aaaagghhh!!! I have know idea how that silly crayon could have gotten into that particular load of laundry! I know, I know, I have five children. I should know by now that I need to check for crayons and other strange things in the laundry. But I didn't, and there went my beautiful shower curtain. So I moved on to the rest of my plan. The sheet was bigger than the shower curtain so I planned to use the extra on this empty wall space like Vanessa of V and Co. does.

That part turned out nice. It is in the bathroom with very crummy lighting, so you'll just have to trust me that the wall looks way better now.

Again, I found the hoops at a thrift store. Quite a while ago, though. The larger one cost 49 cents and the smaller ones cost 19 cents. Like I said, cheap! I think I'll have to keep checking for another sheet with yellow roses. I still would like to give my idea a try.

edited to add: I need to do some more clearing out of stuff. So for next week my goal is to get rid of one box of stuff from my laundry/sewing room.

If you have a fix-up to share, leave a comment telling about it or with a link to your own blog post. For some reason, I can't get Mr. Linky to work at the moment. As soon as I can I'll add it to this post.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Who Am I?

For today's Wordfull Wednesday we are supposed to describe who we are and even include a picture of ourselves. Visit Chocolate on My Cranium for more Wordfull Wednesday participants.

Cocoa said this would be hard. She was right.

As I started thinking about who I am and what I wanted to write about myself I immediately thought of some of my less desirable characteristics. I am easily distracted, I procrastinate, I'm not very organized. Things like that. I quickly stopped myself. Cocoa also said that we should show our beauty. What is there about me that is beautiful? I had to think.

I am almost 31 and am more comfortable with myself than I think I ever have been. It's a nice feeling to be happy being myself. I'm not always thrilled with myself. Sometimes I do things right and sometimes I don't.

And yet I would not be the person I am now without the person I was last year, or 5 or 10 or 20 years ago. So I am going to share lots of pictures of me. All kinds of different me's that add up to the me I am now.
Me at age 1.

I was the first child born to my wonderful parents. My mom (and my grandma and a couple of aunts) made most of my clothes when I was little. My mom taught me how to sew when I was old enough. I love to sew! I'm still learning a lot, but I very much enjoy it.

I very quickly gained two brothers. This picture was taken the day my brother Sam was blessed. I was 3 and my brother Ben was just about 18 months old. I did finally get two sisters. Heidi is 6 and a half years younger than me. (I remember jumping up and down when I learned I had a sister.) And Dixie is almost 11 years younger than me.

This picture of my family was taken at our family reunion this summer. It was SO wonderful to be with all of them. Oh, I love them!

I was a pretty quiet kid. I sang to myself a lot. And daydreamed a lot. I still do when I have a quiet moment. I also grew up with a large strawberry patch and a few lilac bushes in the yard. Those were some of my favorite places to sit and imagine. Strawberries and lilacs are still two of my very favorite things.

I got to go with my Dad on a trip to Seattle when I was 14. He took this picture of me in our hotel room. We had great conversations on that trip, and a few others I was able to go on with him. I still love talking to my Dad. And I love maps, traveling, and exploring new places.

I graduated from high school in 1997. Though I would never want to go back to high school, it was a great growing experience for me. Right after my freshman year of high school I moved from a small town in Idaho to Denver and a much larger high school. I spent more time with my brothers and came to depend on them quite a bit. I had to really decide what I believed and had to stand up for it. I landed the lead role in the school musical when I was a Jr. and gained a lot of self confidence from that and many other experiences. Now I am able to lead singing time for the Primary kids at church every Sunday and it isn't scary to me. I also met the boy who would one day be my husband. In fact we hung out quite a bit and dated off and on.

This is us when I was a senior and he was getting ready to leave on his mission. (I know it looks like an engagement picture, but it really wasn't.) I didn't tell him that I would wait for him. And I didn't. I wrote him a "Dear John" after he had been gone for 1 year. I did, however, realize my mistake. I broke up with the other guy and wrote back to James a couple of months before he came home. I learned a lot then. I came to appreciate James so much more than I had before. I realized that he really did have the qualities I wanted in a husband. Now I know that he has even more wonderful qualities that I didn't even think about at the time.

This is me as a new mother at age 21. I am so glad I'm not a new mother any more. I'm still learning a lot about being a mom, and there are lots of new things coming. But I do love being a mom. It has taught me and changed me more than any other experience I've had.

This is me reeling in a salmon in Puget Sound this summer. Yes, it was cold that day! James and I went to Whidbey Island for a few days to celebrate our 10th anniversary. As we were talking about what we would like to do on our little getaway James said that he would really like to go salmon fishing. He loves fishing. I don't mind fishing so much, but I am terrified of water and get pretty nervous out in a boat. James asked me if I would be ok with salmon fishing and I told him that "without kids, I can handle it." I really wanted to explore some of the little towns on the island and do some window shopping. James really does not like shopping. I asked if he would be too bored with that. He said, "Without kids, I can handle it."

So we went fishing and I really enjoyed it. I even caught the first fish! I'm learning that some things might not be as scary as I had thought.

And so this is me now at age 30. I wonder who I will be after the next 30 years. I'm excited to find out.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Pears From My Yard

I'm canning the ripe ones today.

They are big and juicy and my kitchen smells really good.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Friday's Fix-up: more pictures on my wall

I call my entryway the coat room. It is more of a room than a hallway and it is where we hang our coats and backpacks and stuff our hats and gloves and boots and helmets and whatever else happens to land there. It is usually a pretty chaotic place. And it's the first thing you see when you come into my home! This is a little mortifying to me. In a slight attempt to make the coat room a little nicer I hung up a few pictures on one wall, planning to fill the wall with pictures of people who are dear to us. As you can see, I didn't get very far.

I have now added 5 pictures, and it looks a little nicer. Fuller. More special people.

It's not done yet. I want to keep adding pictures. And someday I would like to get rid of that awful wood panelling!!! Or at least paint it. You just wait, eventually it will end up being a Friday Fix-up.

My fix-up for next week: super cheap bathroom decor for my very blah bathroom.

If you have a fix-up of any kind you'd like to share, write a post about it on your own blog and add your link to the Mr. Linky box below. Or leave a comment telling about something you have fixed-up.


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Advent Calendar Beginnings

I started working on our advent calendar! I mentioned last week how excited I was about my idea...well, now I'm even more excited. So far it is turning out just like I had imagined it would, and that doesn't happen for me very often so I'm extra excited about this.

I've wanted an advent calendar for our family for a very long time. I wanted it to help us remember the reason for Christmas and be simple at the same time. The holiday season is so full of treats and getting stuff that I didn't want it to be a treat filled calendar either. I think I've got just the right thing!

Every night, as part of our bedtime routine, we read the scriptures together as a family and quite often will sing a song or two or seven, depending on time and mood. So, I am making 25 little envelopes out of felt and old scraps of Christmas fabric.

Inside of each little envelope will be a card with the name of a Christmas song for us to sing together before we go to bed. I'm hoping this will bring a little calm into our home amidst all the hustle and bustle of Christmas. I love the excitement of Christmas, but I also love the peace.

I love these old Christmas fabrics. I wish I knew how old the fabric was. It came from a tree skirt kit that my mom found at a second hand store and gave to me when I was newly married. I made the tree skirt years ago, and have hung onto the scraps since then. I really love these fabrics. I feel nostalgic just thinking about them. I have 5 envelopes done so far! They measure 3.5 inches tall and 3.5 inches wide.

This is what the back looks like.

All of these little envelopes will sit in a basket on top of our piano just waiting to be chosen. And of course we will know that as the basket empties, Christmas will be that much closer.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday's Fix-up: my purse

I'm so sorry for the lateness of this post!!! I'd planned to have it up early this morning, but of course today had to be one of the craziest mornings we've had in a while. Now I've learned that if I want it posted early I need to post it the night before.

I hadn't cleaned out my purse in years! Almost three. That's a guess based on what I pulled out of my purse. It was crammed full of junk, and was pretty useless to me that way.

Here is the pile of stuff sitting on my table. Doesn't look nice there either.

I threw most of that stuff away. Including that red planner. I haven't used my planner since 2006. I really don't know why I thought I should carry that around for so long. I threw my purse in the washer and dryer with a load of sheets and it looks and feels much better. Then I filled it up again, but hopefully in a much smarter way.

I included:

1 diaper
ziplock bag of wipes
clean underwear and shorts for a certain 3 year old in a ziplock bag (just in case)
5 band-aids
3 safety pins
1 sanitary pad
immunization records (because I never know or remember when I'm going to need them)
book (because I never no when I'm going to end up waiting)

Doesn't it look nice and organized now? I'm all excited to go somewhere and open my purse and not be embarressed by the junk. My goal is to put garbage in a garbage can and not in my purse!

To participate in Friday's Fix-up write a post on your own blog about something in your home you have improved this week. Anything that has made life a little nicer. Then add your link to the Mr. Linky box below. For next week's fix-up I'll be hanging up a few new pictures. Join me in hanging pictures or find your own fix-up to share next Friday.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Join Me For Friday's Fix-up

I live in a regular house. My five children and my husband also live in this regular house. It is not new, or huge, or beautifully decorated. And it tends to be quite messy at times. This regular house, however, is our home and I want it to be a heavenly home. I can't do it all at once, so I'm taking little bites. I choose one thing to work on every week. Something I can clean out, organize, redecorate, or basically improve. Anything that makes life at home a little nicer and a little more heavenly.

I would love to have you join me!

Choose something in your home and fix it up. Anything. It could be something small, like clearing out some old magazines. Or it could be a much bigger project like painting your kitchen cabinets. Rearrange some furniture, clean out a closet, hang something new on a wall, get rid of old toys or clothes. I always have to consider what's going on and how much time I will really have to finish my chosen task. Right now it isn't much so I've been sticking with smaller jobs. Choose something that works best for you.

Write a post about it on your blog. Include before and after pictures. It is always encouraging to yourself and to others to see what you have accomplished. Here is a button you can include in either your post or on your sidebar. Please link it back to this post if using it on your sidebar.

Every Friday I will post my fix-up with a Mr. Linky at the bottom where you can add a link to your post. We can all encourage each other in our fix-ups and we'll probably get some great ideas as well. The more the merrier. Hope to see you on Friday!

Sew Alongs and Such

More changes to my blog. Nothing really big, but I like it a little better. Over on the right side I've added a few buttons.

One for Friday's Fix-up. If you don't know about Friday's Fix-up click on the button, or come back here tomorrow to find out more.

One for the Pajama Party Sew Along from Sew Mama Sew. I haven't started on the jammie pants for my girls yet, but hope to in the next couple of days. This sew along came at just the right time.

And the last is the 2009 Advent Calendar Sew Along from Craft Apple. I've been wanting to make an advent calendar for years, but never could come up with just the right thing. Last night I finally figured it out, and I am WAY excited! It's quite different from Craft Apple's stocking calendar, but I think it will be perfect for our family. I'll put up a post about it as soon as I get started.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Wordfull Wednesday is back. Visit Chocolate On My Cranium to read more.

As a kid I never made my bed. Well, I did make it when I absolutely had to. But most of the time I managed to leave it fairly messy. There were always lots of books, some clothes, my favorite stuffed animals, and whatever else I thought needed to be there as well. Somehow I always left a space just big enough for me to sleep in. Even when I got older, went to college, and even got married, I still didn't see the need to make my bed. It wasn't full of stuff anymore, but I was quite content to leave the blankets in a rumpled heap. This was a bit frustrating to my husband, I think, but he patiently put up with me.

I'm happy to say that I am now a faithful bed maker. I not only make my bed everyday, I really enjoy having a nicely made bed. When I look back, I can't really see when I started to change my very poor bed making habits into good habits. I can only see the improvement. Hooray!

Developing the habit of making my bed doesn't seem like such a bid deal, but it really is. Because I have been able to change myself, in this small way, I know that I can change and improve myself in other even bigger ways. I am in my 30's now and I'm really enjoying being able to look back and see some improvements in myself. I can see that I still have a long way to go, but I am grateful for the experience I have that tells me I will continue to grow and improve.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Paying Attention

The other day as we were getting out of the van, my oldest son pointed at the van window and said, "Look Mom." I replied, "Oh, yeah, there sure is a lot of dirt on that window isn't there?" He looked at me kind of funny then said, "No, I mean look at the reflection. Cool, huh?" When I looked again I could see a beautiful iridescent reflection of the sun shining through some clouds. It was quite bright, but somehow I had missed it. I wouldn't have even looked at the window if S hadn't called my attention to it.

I think that happens to me way too often. I get so caught up in thinking about other things or noticing the not so good things that I miss the joy around me. Here's to seeing the sunshine!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Friday's Fix-up: Magazine basket and an Invitation

edited to add: skip to the middle of this post for the invitation to and explanation of Friday's Fix-up.

My kids started school this week so I chose a fix-up that wouldn't take too long. I think it took all of 15 minutes, but I had been putting it off for so long that it had become a dreaded task. Does that ever happen to you? I put some little thing off, once or twice or 50 times, and after all that putting off my perception of the task changes. It is no longer a little task. It is a huge ordeal! And then I really don't want to do it. So...I put if off again. UGHHH!!!

So anyway, today I tackled my overflowing magazine basket.

We don't subscribe to tons of magazines, but even a few magazines will pile up horribly if given enough time.


So much nicer to look at!!!

I mentioned an invitation. I've been thinking about this for quite a while, and I think I'm finally brave enough to do it. Here it is: Would anyone care to join me in my Friday's Fix-ups? Next week I'm going to clean out my purse. It has been collecting junk for a very long time, and now that school has started our schedules are getting busier and I really need a cleaner purse. I may even wash it.

So clean out your purses, or choose some other thing in your home that needs a little attention and fix it up. Choose a drawer and reorganize it, clean out one shelf of a closet, get rid of old clothing, rearrange some furniture, or hang up a new picture. It can be something big or small. Whatever you feel like you can do this week. Then post about it on your blog and come back here next Friday and add your link to my post. We can all encourage each other in improving our homes. Sound good? If you don't want to post about it just leave a comment next week telling what you fixed-up. You can also use the Friday's Fix-up picture above to add to your post if you like. Just right click on the picture, then click Save Picture As and save it to your hard drive, then upload it to your post like any other picture. Maybe one of these day's I'll figure out how to make a button.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Felt Hair Clips

I wanted to make some cute hair clippies for my girls this school year. So far I've only made two pair. I'm definitely going to make more. They were fun to make and they are adorable in the girls' hair.

I just eye-balled the circles as I was cutting them out, clipped the edges of the bottom circle, stacked them up, and stitched them all together. The largest circle is about 2 and a half inches in diameter. Then I used my trusty old hot glue gun to glue a clip onto the back. Nothing fancy, but so cute!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Thrifting Fabric

I've been able to find some fabric at a couple of thrift shops lately! I love it when that happens.

These first two I found while shopping with my mom. There are over 3 yards of the pink princess flannel. And it only cost $1!!! I'm going to make some matching jammie pants for my girls. The blue one is actually a pillow case. It was also a dollar. I can't decide if I want to cut it up and use it in a fun quilt, or just use it as a pillow case. It was too fun to leave there. For now it's just sitting on the shelf.

This fabric I found at a thrift shop while James and I were on our little trip to Whidbey Island. This one is also over three yards worth. It was $1.25. I have no idea how old it is, but I love it. It will be fun to use in a quilt I think.