Thursday, June 28, 2012

Ask the Readers

Wow!  I don't know what I've been doing lately, but all of a sudden my daily pages views have been significantly higher.  Thanks to everyone who's been stopping by!  While the readership seems to be up, I'm not getting to many comments.  As a result, I wanted to take this opportunity to really focus on you the readers. 

What are you looking for when you come to visit?  Are you interested in my tips, the shout outs to other great blogs, my latest creations?  What draws you in?  What do you miss?  Bring on the good, the bad, and the ugly today!  I want to hear from you!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Works in Progress

I feel like I'm really getting back into a consistent sewing routine and it's been far too long since I've had that.  Who would have thought that chasing after a 2 year old and working full time would take up so much of time time! Truth be told, I wouldn't change it for the world.  It just makes me respect stay at home moms all the more.  How do they get any thing other than playing/entertaining their little ones done?

I have several projects that I am actively working on these days.  Surprisingly I feel like I'm making progress on all of them.  Of course because I'm splitting my time between many of them, none of them are done yet.  I probably should rethink that multitasking idea, but I claim that my multitasking is for a different purpose.  I can't very well sit and sew while my son runs around in the living room, but I can sit and knit!  Then I do have to choose which knitting project I want to work on. 

I'm the first to admit, I tend to sit and work on my son's blanket more than I will on the one I intend to sell.  There are many reasons I claim this, first and for most, it's for my baby!  Second, I'm on a timeline for this one, it must be completed by October!  Third, it's not a very portable pattern.  I am currently using 5 skeins of yarn at a time.  Then tend to get all twisted together and if I traveled with them I feel like it would only be worse, so alas the project sits on my couch to be worked on in each spare minute my son gives me.  He's pretty excited for his brother's blanket to be finished so encourages me to work on it.  For those of you who may forget or are new, this is the blanket I'm referring to.

When I am out and about from the house and know I will have some down time, I always have my pink blanket with me to work on.  It's easy to take with me and doesn't take much thought in remembering where I am in the pattern.  I thought I was further a long on it than I thought, but then I remembered for this one I decided to use smaller needles to stitch count is different than what I'm used to.  So now I have to decide how many additional rows I want to do to make it the size I want.  Figuring this out will take some thought and a bit of a wait and see attitude, but I'm OK with that.  I'm enjoying it all the same!

I see many people showing off their works in progress on Wednesdays, so share your links!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Falling apart at the Seams

Well  not really, but I've had my moments recently.  I feel like every time I sit down to sew, I feel like I find a new mistake from my last time I had a spare few minutes to sew.  This morning I saw down to finish pinning part of my boppy cover only to notice that I can't pin at the moment and had to rip out part of it what I had just sewed.  It was a bit of a bummer, but I was able to quickly fix it and start pinning again.  With a little luck I will have a very productive weekend, not to mention I will be keeping out of the heat from our most recent heat wave that we are in. 

What are you wonderful weekend plans?  Sewing? Knitting? Swimming?

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Fun Filled Weekend

We had an action packed weekend and I am just now starting to recover from it.  We had a full house of visitors that was wonderful.  I even knocked off a few fun things I've been wanting to do while they were in town visiting doing the tourist stuff. 

After visiting with our friends, she has motivated me to try just a bit harder to maximize our couponing a little more.  So today I thought I would share a few websites I have found that I use regularly, instead of my normal sharing of crafty blogs.  Enjoy! - My husband and I use this to create our grocery list (or any list for that matter, including my fabric shopping list!).  We both have the app on our phone and can use it on the computer so no matter where we are we typically have access to our grocery list. - I use this site to look at the weekly sales for all my local grocery stores so I don't have to go to 5 different websites just to look for the best sale prices -Is a website I recently found through one of my other crafty blogs.  She keeps up to date on local deals as well as some wonderful crafty kid friendly activities. 

I'm sure there are more that I will begin using soon, but these are my favorites at the moment.  What are some of your favorites?

Friday, June 15, 2012

Photo Tip of the Day

Photo credit
I've been spending a lot of time on Pinterest lately.  It's addictive, I know.  It's been really helpful for me in the designing of various parts of our house, creating great ideas for gifts, trying new recipes, and well let's be honest wasting time. 

Today's tip comes from a great blog I found through Pinterest.  The blog Young House Love photographed her daughter once a week for a whole year.  The pictures turned out great, but with the process she's showed some great ideas for a back drop for your product photos.  Why not use some wrapping paper or fabric as your background for your images?  This can open the door to so many new options, especially adding the use of wrapping paper.  I think I'm going into a whole new world now. 

What create back drops do you use when taking posed photographs?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Happy Surprises

Boopy Cover - sorry SOLD OUT! Check current listings for other offerings.
I had to take some things into our office/my studio the other day.  Of course my shadow, a.k.a my almost 2.5 year old had to come with mommy, generally not a big deal.  Well he proceeded to plot himself on the floor, grab the crayons out of the drawer and ask to color.  Who am I to stop him from such a great past time?  So I went to the printer and grabbed him some plain paper for him to go to town. 

Suddenly I realized I had a perfect opportunity to start cutting out my latest sewing project, a boppy cover, that was sitting on my desk laid out nicely waiting for a nice sharp pair of sheers to attack it.  Not only was he entertained long enough for me to cut, but to also start actual construction.  When it was time to sew the first seam he was very interested in the process and watched over me very closely I described the "gas pedal," the seam allowance, and switching to the correct stitch for each part of the cover.  It was so exciting to see him so interested in he construction of something.  Not something was really expecting since he really is all boy, but I was pretty excited to share my passion with him all the same.  The great bonus part of it is that I am not about 25% done with the project! 

This morning, I pinned in the zipper and at the next available opportunity that will be zipping it into the fabric.  Then we'll be on the home stretch!  Looking forward to the finished product.  It's been far to long since I've looked at a finish product. 

What kind of happy surprises have you had recently?  New fabric?  Great deal on something you really needed?  Share your great news!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Summer Vacation Car Survival Guide

Photo Credit
With summer basically here and summer vacations starting to sprout up soon.  I've pulled together a list of some great things to pack to entertain your kids in the car with the goal of minimizing screaming/crying, "Are we there yet?" questions, fighting, and general restlessness. These are just the tips and tricks that I've found and used in my childhood therefore is not exhaustive by any means.  In fact, I'm pretty sure I've seen a few lists like this floating around Pinterst, who knows maybe mine with by next!  Hopefully it will keep us from arriving like this: 

Use a cooler! I always pack lots of fresh fruit, cheese, milk, and water for trips.  I fill up the cooler with these healthy snacks for the whole family so we aren't tempted to buy snacks at the gas station.

Have a food bag!  In addition for the chilled food and drink we always have I also pack a bunch of non-perishable snacks for us to munch on.  I usually just throw the whole bag of something in our food bag, but I recently saw someone mention that they divide up the snacks into individual serving sizes.  I think I'm going to give that one a try on our next trip.

Don't forget the entertainment!  We were lucky when we bought our SUV it came with a built in DVD, not particularly a feature we were looking for, but when you buy used you don't always get options.  This is great because we always hit up the library for a few DVDs before a long car ride so when my son starts to get fussy or antsy we can distract him with an Elmo or Thomas the Tank video.

In addition we always pack some cars and other toys he can easily play with while sitting in his car seat.  Being a mother of a boy, a few toys with wheels can do a LONG way in a car ride.  And of course we also have plenty of books handy.  I just learned that they make some children's books on CD with the book to go with it.  I'd never seen these before, but apparently my library has them so this is on my list to try this summer.

Blankets and Pillows and Animals, Oh My! Don't forget a favorite blanket/pillow/stuff animal for nap time in the car.  We try to keep at least the blanket hidden in the car somewhere until it's time to go to sleep, that way when our son sees it he knows it's time to settle down and get some sleep. 

Speaking of rest!  Don't forget to stop and rest often.  We have a potty trained toddler so these rest stops are very regimented, but if you have older children or ones still in diapers, it's always nice to get out and stretch your legs every once in a while.  Speaking of the rest stop, why not throw in a few items to help burn off some energy at the rest stop?  Bubbles anyone? 

Once you arrive!  Let them out and run around for a while, after all, they deserve it especially after been cooped up for several hours in the card.  If your little ones are anything like mine, without fail.  It doesn't matter how long the trip is 2 hours or 20 hours, that last hour is the worst! 

With these tips, hopefully we'll arrive like this:
Photo Credit

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Featured Sellers - Dream Art

I haven't done a feature in a while.  I thought I would spice things up a bit and throw one in for a change of pace today.  Today I am featuring a great group of people from Dream Papercut.  They have a very unique talent.  Dmytro and Iuliia, the artist behind Dream Papercut create art from cutting paper.

Stitch Silly: Tell me a little about yourself.

Dream Papercut:  Our names are Dmytro and Iuliia and we live in Ukraine. We love creativity and handmade things because looking at them you can feel the inner world of the person who made them. We are creating paper cuts from a single sheet of paper and all of pieces are interconnected. All our works are made with love and soul.

SS: How did you get started with Etsy?

DP: From our childhood we are fond of creativity. Once, we created a greeting card with hand-cut elements for our friend’s birthday. After that, we took interest in paper cutting art and started creating paper cut silhouettes. Then we decided to create our DreamPapercut shop on Etsy and share our art with other people.

SS: What is your favorite part of being your own boss?

DP: This opportunity gives us a chance to be independent artists and do what we like the most. Having flexible schedule you can create whenever you want: at day, at night or the whole day, when you feel inspiration and use this emotional state immediately.  For example you can create whenever you want: at day, at night or the whole day, when you have inspiration.

SS: What are your 2 favorite products in your shop?

DP: All paper cuts in our shop are unique, intricate and the most favorite for us.

SS: What is your greatest success since joining Etsy?

DA: Our greatest success we have achieved was creating the shop that can stand out from the huge amount of beautiful, unique, creative shops that are on Etsy.

SS: What do you most want to improve?

DP: Our plan for future is growth. We want to create more beautiful and intricate paper cuts and get more customers and followers of our art.

SS: What is your ultimate goal for your Etsy shop?

DP: The main our goal is to make more and more people happier through our works and pass a little part of our love and soul.

SS: How many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie pop?

DP: Until you feel the center :)

Interested in seeing more about Dream Papercut.  Check them out at these locations.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Digging Out

Man, I have spent most of today digging out of my internet swamp.  I spent most of Thursday and Friday with my sick son.  He wasn't exactly too sick to go to school, but he was definitely in a mommy I want to sit and cuddle with you all day mood.  He misses such little school I couldn't resist.  Plus I took the time and was able to get some unexpected knitting done!  Now of course he has been so wonderful and given me his cold, but I am trudging through work today so I can save up my leave for fun stuff later in the summer and fall.

Unfortunately, with colds going through the house this weekend that meant no pool time for this household.  Speaking of which, I've been using the great plarn bag it and it's work great for the pool this summer so far. 

In case I forget, I also wanted to share with you that I will be featuring a great Etsy shop on Thursday for you all to check out.  This shop really does some interesting stuff.  Don't forget to stop by and check it out!
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