Monday, December 16, 2013

Watch, Read, Listen!

I haven't done one of these for a while, and I love reading other people'
here are my latest media loves!


  Our latest Redbox rental was: The Way Way Back, which I liked!  I love Sam Rockwell, and he plays a great role in it--so I enjoyed it.  The movie is a little sad throughout but has a good ending.  It is a teenage summer/family drama.
  Also, I have watched this sketch a lot lately--so funny! (Be careful clicking on any other Key and Peele clips, though, as some are really vulgar.)


  I jumped on the bandwagon and read Divergent.  I loved it.  I was sad when it ended.  I watched the movie trailer like 5 times.  I started the second book the next day. It is your very-popular violent-female-protagonist-in-a-dystopian-society teen fiction.  Such good brain junk food!  And, I thought, much better than the Hunger Games.


    I really like cover songs, and this one by the Gregory Brothers is my favorite lately:

Plus, it is done by brothers, which is awesome! 
On a side note, Quincy's favorite song lately is Shakira's Waka Waka, which is equally awesome but is getting less and less awesome the more I am begged to play it.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Sewing for a little girl...

I am on a mission to go the fabric district next month, but before I do, I have challenged myself to use lots of my fabric up! 
I have been doing lots of sewing for Cosette, because she is in the most need--mainly of shirts and dresses.  She loves them and for some reason prefers to wear dresses that I sew for her, which is awesome.    

The other day, she came out wearing this get-up, which is all homemade. This just makes me so happy!

She is wearing a dress made from this free tutorial and pattern.  I left off the layers and instead lengthened it to maxi length and added strip of stretch lace across the front--all materials from my big stack of Michael Levine Loft fabric, so super cheap!
She is wearing much-loved Lucy in a baby carrier made from scrap fabric, using a pattern from Little Things to Sew, which I checked out from the library--so pretty much free!
**I always like to point out the cost of making things, because it is worth it to me to make things cheaply. Otherwise, I would just buy them--my time is too precious!**

Here is Coco on Halloween, wearing a candy corn dress...finished at midnight.
Her school has a no-costume policy, but I really wanted her to wear something festive.
She loved it!

I bought a big discounted bundle of patterns last month, and this dress pattern was included.  It is the Sally Dress pattern, and it has no buttons or zippers, which means it is awesome!

Coco is always very appreciative of everything I make her (with the exception of one thing--maybe I can get her to model it, though)...and since she is my only girl, I am very appreciative that I have my one girl to sew dresses for!
Friday, October 18, 2013

30 Before/During/After 30 Part 1

It's been a while since I looked at this, so I thought it would be fun to post. Then I got tired of writing halfway down, so this is the first half! 

My 30 Before 30 List*
*I turned 30 in June, so I am giving myself another year!
  1. Memorize 10 poems. Progress--3 down (Invictus by William Henly, Litany by Billy Collins, and Wild Geese by Mary Oliver.  There were a couple of others, but I forgot them!) Currently working on Soldier of Fortune by Robert Service.
  2. Memorize 5 piano pieces. Progress--Memorized the 1st page of the Downton Abbey theme song. 6 more pages to go on that one. Guess I should practice more!
  3. Read a mind-stretching church book. Progress--None. I need recommendations, but no Hugh Nibley please--I am not quite there yet!
  4. Have a repertoire of great vegan dinners. Progress--Pretty good! I have gotten some really good recipes lately, but I am at like 7 consistent recipes and would like 20.
  5. Sew at least one wearable dress. Progress--Completed! I made a green dress that I wore on St. Patrick's Day!
  6. Get the best abs of my life. Just abs. Progress--Ummm, I am going to say that I did have very very good abs about a week before I got pregnant with baby #4. Those abs were a result of a new gym membership and a no-grains diet. The gym, the abs, and the no-grains are a no-go for me right now, though. Boo.
  7. Build a stylish, fun wardrobe. Progress--Pregnancy-stalled until further notice.
  8. Increase my knowledge of family history. Progress--Completed! I have been on both mine and my husband's family search pages a lot and have read several journal entries of my ancestors. Knowledge increased!
  9. Pick an actor, series, or genre, and watch the complete works. Progress--Still can't decide which actor/series/genre to follow, although I have watched all 5 seasons of Parks and Rec in the past couple of months. Does that count? I am considered everything and anything Patrick Stewart, since it just seems like he can do no wrong...although that is a lot of Star Trek to watch!
  10. Read a book about Joseph Smith. Progress--Again, I need a good book recommendation!
  11. Teach myself blog design. Progress--Nada. My computer time has been very limited lately.
  12. Get caught up on baby books. Progress--I got caught up and then got pregnant, so now I have an entirely new book to start!
  13. Take a class. Progress--Incomplete. Which class? Hmmm...
  14. Create something out of a new-to-me medium/process. Progress: Completed! The kids and I spent an afternoon making doll food out of polymer clay, which was awesome and cute!
  15. Have a good exercise regimen going. Progress--I did for a while but have since fallen off. Exercise for me is a weekly class plus a couple of nights a week of the exercise bike or prenatal pilates.  Definitely need to step this one up!
Sunday, June 16, 2013

Turning 30!

Last summer, I made a 30 Before 30 list. I was a little too ambitious.
I put down such grand goals as memorize 10 poems (4 down!) and memorize 10
piano pieces (hmmm...seeing as I never get a chance to play the piano without a child crawling on me, this one was a bad idea).

However, I did cross a few things off--and one of them was go to the L.A. Fabric District, which I did, on my birthday!

I dragged my prego best friend along, and she was such a good sport. Thanks, Ru!

I didn't take many pictures, but we had a good time.  I get easily overwhelmed, so I had mapped everything out and only went to the few shops that I had read good reviews about.

One of them was Michael Levine loft, where we spent most of our time (see Ru sitting on that big pile of fabric? Yeah, we were there a while).  It is basically a big loft full of cardboard boxes you dig through and pay $2.50 a pound for what you find.
It was awesome.
Here's what I got:

I got yards of ribbing, jersey fabric, interlock knit, sweatshirt knit, stretch chambray, chiffon, and a cool bird print fabric.

I got many, many, many yards of fabric for around $25. Take that, Joann's!
Afterwards, we went to the Flower District, which was fun.
And then hit Friday L.A. traffic, which was not so fun!

When I got back, my sister and her family were there from Arizona, so it was so nice to have them celebrate!

Fox made me an origami hat. I am wiped out at this point :)

And marshmallow peanut-butter cup brownies.  I hadn't had sugar in a while. Probably a bad choice of dessert!

I had a great day and learned a lot.  Like most of the fabric district is pretty sleazy, but some of it is cool...and parking is crazy.  But I successfully drove in downtown L.A. without getting flipped off (like last time :) )

I am excited to be 30! I feel like it gives me some credibility with the amount of kids I have, if that makes sense. Here's to the next decade!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Tumble Tee and Circle Skirt

I got to be a pattern tester for Imagine Gnats' new pattern, the Tumble Tee.  I love pattern testing! I highly recommend this pattern--easy and a great way to use up clothes destined for Goodwill. And no set-in sleeves! I want one!

I refashioned a shirt of mine into a Tumble Tee for Coco in a half-hour--now that is an awesome pattern :)
I also made her a circle-skirt. Also super quick. Also awesome.
Let the twirling commence!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Sew Mama Sew: Giveaway Winner!

      And the winner is:  


Blogger Rocksteadyemme who said...

the new mowgli's song: San Francisco

I will be e-mailing you shortly...but first, here is the song she recommended...and it
makes me very is so so cute and catchy!

Thank you for participating this year and giving me some good songs to look up! 

Monday, May 6, 2013

It's Giveaway Day!

 It's Sew Mama Sew's bi-annual Giveaway Day, and, in an attempt to lure karma into me *finally* winning one of the bajillion giveaways I enter each year, I thought I would offer something up this week!

Here's the prize:

Simplicity 1690: A Leanne Marshall pattern, along with a 1 1/2 yard cut of Anna Maria Horner's Little Folks voile in Forest Hills Berry.

The pattern has a cute skirt and dress option--but my favorite is the super easy, slouchy tee it includes! No closures or facings or set in sleeves! Plus the AMH voile would be just perfect to use for this tee! I love how the Quirky Peach made hers!

*This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. Sorry!*
To enter, leave a comment telling me the name of a song that always makes you super happy!
Giveaway open until May 10th.
Check Sew Mama Sew for more great giveaways this week!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Cook from the Book: Cornflake Cookies

I didn't take pics of mine--this is from online--but my cookies looked a lot like this.

   I recently finished the book Paris, My Sweet, which I loved!  Definitely worth the $6 on Amazon! One thing I loved about it was how the author has lists for the best sweets in Paris and then also in New York.  

  At the top of her list, for the #1 sweet to try in New York, was Momofuku's famous Cornflake Chocolate Chip Marshmallow Cookie. She rated it #1 over all of the cupcakes and pies and cakes she has tried as a "sweets columnist"! So--I was very intrigued!

 Since the internet has everything, I found the recipe in several places, like here. I must like torture, because I am not eating sugar right now yet still decided to make a batch of these cookies. I did break down and eat half of one--and then got a headache. Worth it. Luckily, I made them for a girl on bed rest, so they were out of the house quick! Sad for my husband, who could have easily eaten the whole batch!

  If you decide to make them, you first have to buy cornflakes and mix in sugar and butter and then bake them into a "cornflake crunch". I have a feeling that if you just use frosted flakes, you will get the same effect with much less effort.  Also, the recipe calls for making giant cookies--but I think the cookies turned out better when I made them small. The big ones spread too much.

 Despite the fact that I couldn't really eat them due to my bajillion cavities,  they were fun to make and try--but not sure they would be #1 on my list for best treats, although they definitely were a huge hit with everyone who tried them (the girl I gave them to texted me with "Must.Have.Recipe.")  

Guess I'll have to go to New York and see what would be #1 on my list!
Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Kids' Clothes Week: Geranium Dress

Outfit #2: The Geranium Dress


More clothes for Coco! Despite the fact that she is obsessed with hammerhead sharks and sea monsters (she's moved on from vampires), she loves to wear skirts and dresses. I found this cute fabric at HobbyLobby for $3 a yard, and it is so cute!
  I used Made by Rae's Geranium Dress Pattern, which is super popular for good reason--it is super easy and cute and has pockets!  I added three inches to the length, and it is just barely clearing Coco's knees--girl's got her daddy's build--hallelujah! :)
Sunday, April 21, 2013

Kids' Clothes Week!: The Romper

 It's Kids' Clothes Week! 
 Basically a ton of bloggers sew for their kids everyday this week.  Very fun.



First up is an outfit for QP:

I used the Scientific Seamstress Reversible Romper Pattern for the gingham romper. The gingham was $2 a yard during a Denver Fabrics sale! I am getting obsessed with fabric that is under $5 a yard.  I respect the need to create, but I also feel strongly that sewing should save you money!
I love the romper pattern--only 2 pieces, super quick, and very very detailed!
I used the Flashback Skinny Tee pattern and some remnants of knit fabric on hand for his shirt.
I love little boys in rompers!  Too cute!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Watch, Read, and Listen!

Here is my latest media love!

Watch: Oz The Great and Powerful 3D

Another cereal-box-certificate movie!
I really enjoyed this movie--it had really good 3D and visual effects and a sweet ending line from the good witch.  I didn't like how they portrayed the bad witches, though, and I would not let my kids see this, as there were too many shocking and screeching parts!

Read: Paris, My Sweet by Amy Thomas

I am loving this book about a New York writer who spends a year in France trying out all the bakeries! Food memoirs are my favorite genre (are they a genre?)! It is a cute, light read!

Listen: Nothing new!  
I am a slave to my 4 year old and her very distinct pop-music demands!
Here is her latest favorite song--we watch this daily:
Don't worry--we always talk about how wrong it is to steal things from laundromats :)

I am definitely in need of new music and a new FUNNY show! Please share!!


Covert Robin Swap!: Sent

    Last month, I signed up for the Covert Robin Craft Swap, and here's what I made:
First, a sling bag, using Pink Chalk's Mail Sack Pattern. This is the fourth bag I've made using this pattern--I love it!  It is a great size and lets me use up all the random home dec fabric I have! The pouch is the Bella Pouch Pattern--which is cute and a perfect size for wallet and keys! I take mine everywhere!

How do you photograph a bag??

I am (quickly) using up all my Japanese fabric.  It's too cute to just sit there!
Japanese fabric for the pockets!

I added a crochet rose brooch for fun! 

I had fun--I always have way more fun making things on a deadline! My recipient sent me a sweet grateful letter--she has 9 kids and can definitely use the extra bag :) I was so happy she liked it!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Ice Cream Tees

              I am a big believer that if you are going to make something homemade, it better be cheap--otherwise, save your money and just go buy it (in most cases).  When I went to Joann's a few months ago, I could not believe how expensive their fabric is--most of the knits are $12.99 a yard (what is this--Japan???)

So, I found some bargain knit fabric online for $3 a yard and had to get some to support the fact that it was so dang cheap (Thank you, Girl Charlee Fabrics!).  And because it had cute ice cream cones on it, I used that fabric right up to make me and my little girlie some matching tees:

My cute girl--she likes her shirt, and it fits perfectly!
Coco's Tee is the Made by Rae Flashback Tee Pattern

Coco took this pic :)  For my shirt, I used the Sewaholic Renfrew Pattern, which I have seen made up by pretty much every sewing blog in the universe.  Cute--but I think it is probably going to be a pajama shirt!


I love sewing for my little Coco! She is not too picky and very appreciative!

   This year, I have a long list of sewing goals--and one of them is to learn something new every time I sew, which is easy--because I am definitely a beginning sewer!

So for this project, I learned:
   a.) how to install and sew with a walking foot.  It is awesome and makes sewing with knits way easier!
   b.) yet again to stop sewing knits until I get a serger.  Sergers make quick work and strong seams.  You can do it with a regular sewing machine, but sergers are amazing. Now where can I find one for super super cheap?
   c.) Poor Cash really wants something sewn for him.  Hmmm...

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Natural Living: Homemade Body Butter

Recipe here
   My family and I have been going down the rabbit-hole in healthy living research lately.  We are all pretty naturally-inclined, but my dad's 3rd recurrence with CLL has made a lot of us even more so--for me, I keep thinking about chemicals to avoid eating but also to avoid being absorbed through your skin, such as those in typical beauty products. The gist: aim for preservative/sulfate/dye-free products if you can. Go optimal health and natural living!
   As far as natural beauty products, I think the best options are often the simplest.  So, I got some shea butter (from Amazon--the pure unrefined kind), coconut oil, and orange essential oil and whipped this up (literally whipped--with a Kitchenaid--it was awesome!). The recipe is under the photo.

Verdict: This body butter is not for my dishwashing-dry hands, but it works great for the body (duh!). Also, orange oil is not my thing. I will definitely try this again with a different scent!

Bonus:  I did something I pinned! 

Double Bonus:  This body butter is technically edible! Hooray!
Saturday, January 12, 2013

Watch, Read, Listen!

I love reading about what other people have been up to, so here's what has been in my radar lately:

1.) Watch: Les Miserables and The Hobbit!

   Fox and I went to Les Mis on our anniversary, and it was exhausting to watch. I don't think I was prepared for the fact that it was about 99% singing.  The parts with Anne Hathaway are amazing, but the other 2 hours were pretty difficult for me.

Mainly because of him:

 He (above) played Marius.  He sounded like a muppet--pretty much ruined the movie for me.

Surprising, I enjoyed Russell Crowe's singing the most!
 Although he's been getting conflicting reviews, I think he totally rocked it. Also, his death scene is very bizarre.  Makes me wonder how they do it on Broadway? 
Anyways, Les Mis was fun to watch with my hubby, because we were looking at each other going, "What?!" for a lot of the movie.  Good times. I should add that the songs are awesome.

 Since I made Fox see Les Mis, I went and saw the Hobbit with him (thanks, Cinnamon Toast Crunch free movie codes!!).

    I liked The Hobbit!  I had just finished reading the book, and so I think they did a pretty good job with Bilbo.  They of course put a ton of stuff in the movie to make it longer--and unfortunately way more gruesome--but I enjoyed watching the dwarves.

2.) Read: The Dirty Life by Kristin Kimball

  This book has been on my to-read list for over 2 years--and the library here ordered it for me--so yay!  It was worth the wait.  It is a very good account of a journalist who falls in love with a farmer and starts a farm with him.  I love reading about cooking and farming and personal growth!

3.) Listen: Drew Tabor

I have had Taylor Swift's "I Knew You Were Trouble" stuck in my head all week--but I don't really like her voice or the video for that song--so I'm glad I found this one.  I love this girl's voice, and she puts a unique spin on stuff.

Okay--who am I kidding--this is what I've really been listening to all week. It's just so dang catchy. Sshhh...


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