10.31.2013

A really "tangled" story

When Halloween roles around in blog land it seems like there is an unwritten rule that says:

"Attention--all Halloween Costumes must be completed by the first week of October.  You are allowed to take pictures and write a blog post about said costumes in week 2 of October.  Week 3 is acceptable, but not recommended.  But if you dare to post about your costume{s} in week 4 {or worse, buy a costume from the store....gasp}, you will be expected to post a written apology....and then you will be shunned.  You've been warned." 

So....what's that about?  In the past, I've always been surprised to hear mothers say, "I feel so guilty, I bought costumes from the store!" or read blog posts that state, "I'm so sorry I didn't get a chance to finish these costumes in time for a blog post.  _________ got sick.  I'm sorry to be posting them the day after Halloween..." 

But this year, I understand.  I got all wrapped up in the "good mom's make perfect homemade costumes" thing.  Until I had the following conversation with Superman

"Look at the fabric for Ezras Eugene vest.  The color isn't even the same as the one in the movie.  But I couldn't find the right color of material.  And the buckles are supposed to be brass, not gold and......"

I turned to see Superman looking at me like I was crazy-town.

And that's all it took and I was like...wow do I hear myself?  Am I really expecting people to open the door when they hear "trick or treat," pull out a picture they just happen to have of Flynn Ryder, and compare it to my two-year-old and say, "sorry kid, no candy.  Your costume just doesn't pass muster."

So ya.  If I was perfect this would have all been done a month ago and I would have gotten beyond adorable pictures with the kids in the grass, in a forest somewhere...but alas, no perfection to be found here.  As soon as I finished up Madelyn's costume yesterday, it snowed and it was freezing again today.  And believe me, thanks to Lila, I've seen Tangled enough times to know that there's no snow in that movie.  

So here we are the day of Halloween, cozy and warm, inside, with our perfectly imperfect costumes.  I think I'll post about them individually over the next couple days and risk a shunning, but for now, here's my little slightly out of focus tangled crew.
And maybe you never heard the real Tangled story?  I'm hear to enlighten.

Once upon a time Rapunzel was like:

And Flynn Ryder was very serious and sad.

Like really sad.

ad while they were doing their thing, Pascal comes in all cute,

and says, "bottoms up!"

So we took a breather while Rapunzel tried to console Flynn.

Then Rapunzel got a few glamour shots since she was the only one who was cooperating with pictures.


Which of course made Pascal jealous.

It was pretty traumatic.

So we gave Flynn a second chance at redemption {with the promise of ice cream.}

And he did the closest thing to a smolder that we'll get.

And then he flopped down and got ready to strike a pose.

But the real fun started when he discovered he could take off his precious satchel.

And kick it.

And then Pascal came back and sprawled out of on the floor.

And then Rapunzel came back and tried to hold hands.

To which Eugene was like, "no way, sista."

And then I got myself some ice cream and may or may not have shared it with my minions.  And then I took a nap.

The end.
All kidding aside, I liked making these costumes and seeing them come together.  We've done mostly store bought in the past, but it just worked out for me to sew them this year and I enjoyed myself.

Have a happy Halloween.  And remember, your kids are still gonna get candy, no matter what they're wearing.  

10.29.2013

Gold Faux Peter Pan Collared Shirt

I'll be the first to admit that I haven't been as true to gold as I am now.  When I was a kid gold was so not cool and I was into all things silver.  I still opt for silver jewelry mostly, but now I can appreciate a little pop o' gold here and there.

When I saw this idea from I Am Momma Hear Me Roar a while back, I loved it and I've finally gotten around to making one for Lila.
I want to clarify again that I did not come up with this idea.  I like to label my pictures, but my ideas are often inspired by other people's ideas.  I recognize that I am not the creative genius, but labeling the pictures helps me feel organized, so please don't think I'm trying to take credit.  Just sayin'.

So onward and upward.  I bought this shirt for $1 on clearance at walmart a while back.
and some Sparkly Tulip stuff {a touch spendy, yes, but it's got a whole sheet and I'm going to try to get as much use out of it as I can because, ya know, I'm a tight wad.}
And then I let the gold and the super cheap shirt become one.
Again the original tutorial is here.  It's simple and fairly self explanatory.  Here's what it looks like without buttons.
I added some gold buttons for a little gold on gold.  Too much?
Maybe.  Oh stinking well.  Because it was an easy, fun way to put some life into a plain shirt.

Hope your day is golden. :)

10.25.2013

Heart & Butterfly Skinny Jeans

It's a well-known fact in our household that Superman never "oooh's and ahhhh's" enough over cute fabric that I find.  It's just how it is.  He's polite, but not ecstatic.

But you can imagine my disappointment when I busted out this heart and butterfly denim fabric at what I thought was the perfect moment after dinner the other day. 

And Superman said, "Wow, ummmm pretty fancy, right?"

Fancy?  Well, yes.  But you could tell in his voice that his heart just wasn't in it. :)  

And I get it, it's just fabric.  And truth be told, I do the same thing when it comes to some things that Superman likes.  I never quite say the right thing when Superman comes home with a new tool.  

"Look Beth, do you wanna look at these new drill bits I got at Home Depot today?"

"Ummmmm....no. I mean yes!  I mean, I will."  Smile.

It's just how it goes around here and we've both come to terms with it {though I have been making more of an effort to really try to like electrical stuff because we're in the process of wiring our basement right now.  :)}

aaaaanyway.  Maybe you've seen this fun denim at Joann{s} in the bottom wights section?  And maybe you'll "oooh" and "ahhhh" with me?  It was on sale a few weeks ago, so I thought I'd get my act together and sew something for KCW: some skinnies for my two little minnies.
I used peek-a-boo patterns Skinny Jeans.  {affiliate link in the sidebar on the right} It's one of my favorite patterns.  And yes, I do talk about it way too much.  You're right.  But I use it quite a bit and it's a good pattern.  Plus it helps me make cute little custom skinny jeans for my minions for less than ten bucks.  Pretty cool, I'd say.
Here's a sad day.  I sewed the wrong size for Lila.  That wasn't the patterns fault.  Lila is pretty petite, but she's hit a growth spurt lately and I accidentally sewed her a 2T when normally she'd totally be a 3T.  Just one of those "I wasn't thinking straight" moments.  I'm sure you've never had one of those.  :)  But she's so little, they still fit her.  Whew!
At first she wasn't too keen on "jeans" since she wears leggings 99% of the time, but after a little while I think she realized the fabric stretched too and she announced her approval.  Long live this little queen.
I also let Lila pick out the material and the buttons {I've been having a case of gold fever, so it must be spreading to her.}  Of course she went with butterflies.  :)
Madelyn looks a little tipsy and battered in this one.  She just got her stitches out yesterday and she's learning to walk.  Need I say more?
I sewed Madelyn a 12 month size and they fit perfectly.  And she's got shorty legs, so she'll have room to grow over the winter.
Seeing her waddle around in these pants is the best.
And that's that.  Have a lovely weekend!

kid's clothes week

10.24.2013

The one where I couldn't think of a title.

Well this has been a funny week.  Well, a funny month really.  I haven't been able to find my inner drive, my oomph, if you will.  Do you ever go through times where you just feel a bit lost?  Not literally, {because you know where you live} but just lost in life--in your goals or in what's important to you.  And they're good goals, worthy goals, but you just don't have enough time in the day.  And you have so many projects you wanna do and you start things, don't finish and then life sort of just piles up on you?  And at the end of the day you look around and wonder, "What on Earth did I accomplish today?"  I've been in that rut lately.

I'm not complaining here, I'm just sending my thoughts into cyberspace, in hopes that my reflections will help me cope with the fact that I've been a little off my game and maybe I can jump back on the bandwagon.  Maybe baby, we'll see.

There is this little spot close to our house where the road passes over a little bridge and if you look as you pass, you catch a glimpse of the trees lining the river bend.  If you drive by too fast or if you blink, you might miss it.  I always try to catch a glimpse of it as I drive by because, as cheesy as it sounds, it takes my breath away every single time.  It's pretty all year round, but especially at this time of year as the leaves change colors and everything is brilliant and autumny.  
So today, I stopped in the middle of the road and took a picture of it....and promptly caused a traffic jam.

And then I tried to calm the mass of people behind me, who were giving me a, "Hey lady, what are you doing stopped in the middle of the road with your cell phone?" look with a sheepish smile and wave that said, "Sorry, don't worry.  Everything's fine....I'm just making you late to wherever you are in a hurry to get to so that I can get a picture of this breathtaking spot that I love because I'm just realizing how blessed I am to live in this beautiful place."

#iamawesome

I kept thinking about that on the drive home. How often I figuratively "drive-by" beautiful "spots" or stages in my life just to get where I need to go, or to hurry to the next stage in life.  Thinking about this made me take stock and notice all of the things that have made my life beautiful lately.  Not to make myself seem extra blessed or anything, but just to recognize that life really is beautiful no matter what.

Madelyn fell last week and had to get stitches.  She's officially my first "stitch baby" so naturally I overreacted and the whole thing was traumatic.  {Especially considering the fact that the only "stitching" I was planning to do that day was on my sewing machine.  Go figure.} 

The little doll's been a little trooper, albeit a bit fussy.  But she's been giving extra snuggles.  so I won't say anything else against her.  
And suddenly, I'm looking at Lila and Ezra and I'm realizing how big and old they are getting.  I'm sure a mother with actual grown children is laughing at me, but you know when your kids just start acting like little humans instead of babies. It's weird, but I love it and I wouldn't trade these minions for anything. 
The other day, I gave the kids ice cream cones on the front porch and Ezra plopped down on a pumpkin and started yelling at trucks going by.  It was hilarious to hear him, "Hey! Hey toooowuck!"  Such a boy.
Anyway, after I got home from my little "epiphany drive" today, I stopped everything and decided to focus on my kids.  Because out of all the things that I could be doing, trying to be a good mom should rank pretty high on my priority list.  And sometimes I forget that.  I guess driving by that lovely spot made me see that some of the most beautiful "places" in my life are these little people who call me "mom."  My identity is locked around them.  And while I sat playing with my kids and eating cucumbers {or "wooo-cumbers" as Ezra was calling them}, I felt my sense of direction come back to me and I felt at peace about not getting everything "done."  Life for me is happiest when I do what I feel like God wants me to do.  

So, I'm glad we had this little chat.  I feel much better.  Thanks for reading if you got through it and if not, I understand and you are forgiven.  Now let's see if I can get something sewn for KCW.....the race is on!    

10.18.2013

Knit Lace Skirt

"Jennifer! Pst! Jennifer!" someone was whispering behind me.  Naturally, I didn't think that this whisper was meant for me because my name is not Jennifer.  But I noticed in my peripheral vision that the person from whose mouth the whisper was coming from was motioning towards me.  

"Hey Jennifer!" I turned to find that a nice woman in my church congregation was indeed addressing me.  

Now here's the rub.  Do I correct her?  No.  She seemed so confident in thinking that I was Jennifer and I didn't have the heart to correct her.  And I couldn't blame her.  I get mistaken for "Jennifer" quite a bit.  I blame that on the fact that I bare an ever so slight resemblance to Jennifer Aniston.  Slight.  {Well, it's more like I could be taken as her homely cousin or something like that.}  And if I correct her and tell her "my name is Bethany" she might hear Brittany or Stephanie.  That's pretty common too.  I had a teacher call me Brittany for an entire semester and I think she still thinks that's my name.  But I digress.  

I simply chose not to correct her.

"Jennifer, I love your skirt!" she said.  

"Oh thank you!" I answered.

"Where can I get one?" she asked.

"Oh I made it.  You could totally make one too!"

"Oh no.  I couldn't make that."

I left it at that.  But had she known how easy this skirt was, she might have given it a try.  Jersey knit, stretchy lace, cut with a bit of a curve toward the top, sew down both sides, hem the top and bottom with a double needle and you're in business.
And I'll be honest with you here.  Making tutorials is stressful for me.  I like to document and take pictures of what I make and how I make things in hopes that it might be helpful to someone else, but sometimes it's just nice to create or sew without interruption until a project is all done.  But whenever I do that, I feel a bit lame that all I have to show you is an end product.  I'm sure it's not as helpful, but maybe you can look at posts like that as inspiration rather than an exact "step-by-step"?
I might even get around to making another one of these because it was such a breeze.  {And if I do, I'll make a tutorial} It was a nice, super satisfying, easy project just for me.   
Ok, remember how I'm not a model?  I know I talk about this every time I post a picture of myself, but seriously.  What am I looking at here?  Maybe a real cool bug?  And where I am walking?  Towards the bug, off the sidewalk?  Sheesh. 
Anyway, that's it.  Now please excuse Jennifer, Brittany, Stephanie Bethany while she goes to do some laundry.  Have a fab day!

10.16.2013

The Easiest Bow You'll Ever Make

Do you hate it when someone says this is "the easiest_____________ you'll ever make."  {fill in the blank according to your preference ie bread, skirt, soup, whatever.}  And then it turns out to be the opposite of the easiest thing you'll ever make.  Because you try it and it gets super complicated and you feel like what the heck is wrong with me?  They said this was easy!!!!!   

Story of my life.  Which is why I'm clarifying that this is the easiest bow you'll ever make because you're not actually making it. :) Technically, it's already been made.  Basically you are making it wearable.  Nice, right?
If you live near a Dollar Tree, they are selling these little metallic and sparkly gold and silver bows.
I thought they were adorbs {translation: adorable}.  But I went to put one in my hair {because I try to defy my age and still wear bows every once in a while} it was completely useless because it wouldn't stay in, it hurt, and it ripped some of my hair out.  Lame sauce.  So since balding is not on my bucket list, I decided to do something about this little predicament.

The solution is an easy, inexpensive fix.  For the metallic bows, all you've gotta do is pry the bobby pin out of the middle section of the bow.
They were just hot glued in, so it shouldn't be too difficult to get the bobby pin out.


Gently open up the piece that wraps around the bow.  And remove any old hot glue.
Then just get a clip {I like the smaller ones with the pointy edge as opposed to the two pronged edge because I think that they work better}

Hold the bow and the clip open and put a dab of hot glue in the bow.
Continue to hold it open until it dries.  
Add a little more hot glue to put the bow piece on.
And viola!  
A little bow that won't make you bald.  {Don't ask me what I'm looking at all creepy-like here.  Because I'm not sure?}
Now I did something a little different with the sparkly bow.  These were originally attached to a little elastic like so:
They also just opened right up and you can totally attach them to a clip like you did above but I opted to put them on a headband instead.

You know, for that cute little one who  looks like she is suffering from male pattern baldness hasn't gotten all her hair yet.  :)
Just open up the bow where it attaches to the elastic
 place the middle section around the headband.
And add a little dot of hot glue to the top and bottom.  And press it closed.  {This tutorial also shows why I am not a hand model.}
Let it dry and you're set!
Enjoy your new easy bows!  Thanks a million for reading!
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