Monday, February 22, 2010

Craftiness Abounds!

Finally had a little bit of crafting time over the last week and hoping for even more this coming week.

Inspiration here for this little sewing-table-side ironing board. I don't guess it's big enough to iron clothes on, but who does that anyway? It's perfect for pressing open seams, etc. without having to get up from my sewing table.

I used two layers of insulbright thermal batting which I duct taped :0 to the tabletop and then cut my fabric a few inches larger than the top and sewed a casing for elastic around the edges. Super cute and in a fabric that will coordinate nicely with an upcoming, larger-scale project...

Following this tutorial, I made a "Coffee Cozy" for a coworker from the same and a coordinating fabric. I didn't have a cup with me when I made it, so I just followed the tutorial. I used one layer of the same insulbright batting for this.
Now that I can put it on a cup, though, I think I'll make the next one with two buttons and elastic loops to keep it closed a little better. I also think it could be a little longer because scooting it up much higher on the cup opens the overlap edges some. I might tweak this one, but it's really cute!

I've linked this to: The Girl Creative

Monday, February 15, 2010

Kickin' it old school...

Remember Shrinky Dinks? Man, I think I'd forgotten about them, but they really are pretty cool. Here's how it all started....

My daughter's Girl Scout troop are first-year Juniors. For those not 'in the know' - Junior level is 4th & 5th grade and is the first level they can earn a big award. For Juniors, the Bronze Award is the highest award they can earn. Basically, there are several 'prerequisites' they have to work through and then they complete a 'big' project - something that benefits their community somehow and takes about 15 hours to complete.

We're only in our first year as Juniors, so we won't be working on the final project until next year but we needed to go ahead and pick a 'theme' because a lot of the pre-work has to relate to our final theme. We talked about general themes where girls their age could really make a difference... whether it be the homeless, the hungry, animals, children, elderly, etc. These girls, though, are all about animals... so that's the direction we're heading.

Over the next few months, we'll start on that pre-work, but we'll also start checking out some local agencies that we might be able to help with our project. In our area, we've got an excellent SPCA, the Humane Society, Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition, CAP, Special Pals, and several rescue agencies (shout out to Lone Star Boxer Rescue, where we got our doggies). Feel that linky love? Check 'em out!

Wow - I sure know how to make a short story long, right?

Anyway, we're starting with the SPCA. We'll take a tour, of course, but they also offer a patch project for scouts. As part of that project, we discuss seveal aspects of responsible pet ownership. At our meeting on Wednesday, we discussed the different ways of pet identification - tags, tattoos, and microchips. The girls also threw out spraypaint, but they're just kooky like that.

As a fun go-along activity, we brought out the Shrinky-Dink (paper? plastic? what the heck is that stuff?) and some tag shaped templates (heart, circle, bone, etc.) The girls traced, wrote and colored and then I took them home and shrunk them. They turned out really cool, very cute, and I would LOVE to show you... but I just don't have the time to graphically edit out all of the addresses and phone numbers they included on their tags, like good pet owners. Is it odd that all 12 of our scouts' families have pets?

But just for you... so you can experience the magic... here are some before, during, and after photos of some fun Shrinky Dinks my kiddos made over the weekend. These are photo'd on a standard size sheet of paper so you can grasp the shrinkage.

Run to Hobby Lobby, grab some of this stuff... and start making things. No idea what we'll do with most of them, but it's pure fun!

Here's the before. Paige made the kitty (she cut off one leg), Blake made the chicken (????) and their friend made the ghost.

Here's the during... I pulled them out of the oven to get a picture of the funky way they curl up in process. This is about 90 seconds into the baking... they don't take long. A little longer in the oven and they really do flatten back out.

Here's the 'after' with a close up shot following. So cute!!

Happy Valentine's Day

We had a very nice Valentine's Day at home. I've always cooked a 'fun' Halloween dinner, and sometimes a 'themed' April Fool's Day dinner, but I've never really done a special meal for Valentine's Day. I knew the kids would really get a kick out of it, so I did this year.

The centerpiece was just a chip-n-dip bowl filled with candy. Their cards were around it. The drink of choice was pink milk with heart shaped marshmallows.

I cooked up some heart-shaped pancakes on the griddle. After the first batch (trial and error) they got much easier and started looking good.

Simple breakfast... pancakes and sausage... but they did love the special touches. Even Erika thought it was cute and not corny :-)

The rest of the day was pretty nice. The weather warmed way up... like into the low 70's, so Paige, Blake and I took Dean down to their school playground. Of course, I forgot my camera, but Dean had oodles of fun going down slides while Paige and Blake played hide and seek around the area. Dean's such a little daredevil too... it was about his 4th slide down that he flipped onto his tummy half way down and soon learned it was much more fun that way.

I received a very nice card from the hubs... and some cutesy slippers since he noticed I'm always complaining of cold feet.

Hope everyone had a love-ly Valentine's Day surrounded by family.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Cutie Patootie

Have some weekend projects I'll be posting about on Monday, but here's a video of Dean from December.