Monday, November 29, 2010

Magnificent Mondays: Magnificent Blogs 41

Heather shares her vibrant life through the rough difficulties of past circumstances.  She also shares fun projects that you're sure to be inspired by!  

Fall bunting?  Don't mind if I do!

I love these wreaths, especially the ones that Heather made!  I can't wait to try my hand at these!

Be inspired to have a handmade Christmas this year.

Head on over to Heather's Blessed Little Nest and be inspired by her faith in our Father and her crafty ideas and design.  
Happy Blogging!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Shutterfly Christmas Card Promotion

I received an email from my friend Jade a couple of weeks ago informing me about Shutterfly's free 50 Christmas Card promotion for the year and thought to myself, "I don't have any good pictures of Stephen and I from this year that I can use for this promotion.." and so I wrote it off.  However, after seeing all the different blog posts showing all the different options that Shutterfly had, I knew I must take a picture of Stephen and I and take advantage of all this amazing deal!  I can't wait to send the cards to family members that we don't get to see that often so that they have a good picture and a sweet card to wish them a Merry Christmas with!  So, I went through all the different amazing choices that Shutterfly had to offer and let me tell you, it took forever!  They have SOOOOOOOOO many amazing different designs on their website that it took forever for me to go through all them because there were literally so many of them that I loved and wished I could get a variety pack :).  After many different times of looking through the choices, here are the three that I finally chose that I like the best:

Choice #1
I love this one for many reasons.  The first reason that I love this one is because it says "Merry Christmas" on it - I really like my Christmas cards to say this instead of "Seasons Greetings" or "Happy Holidays".  The second reason that I like this is because it has brown background and all the reds and greens look so good on it!  And, as you'll be able to tell from the next 2 choices, it has that traditional, timeless look to it and I'm so drawn to that.

Choice #2
You see what I'm talking about as far as the traditional look goes?  I love the font choice on this card as well as the colors and design around the picture and in the background.  And again, this one says "Merry Christmas" :).

Choice #3
How could I not like this one?  I love the brown, red, champaign color combination as well as the most meaningful message!  The design of it isn't my most favorite but everything else about it wins me over!

Phew!  That was a lot of visual stimulation! :)  If you have a blog, you should totally take advantage of Shutterfly's amazing Christmas Card Promotion!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Christmas Pillow Extravaganza

This year, I decided that I was going to make Christmas pillows to cover our regular pillows on our couches.  The greatest thing about this project is that I already have pillow inserts for the pillows so all I have to do is make the covers for them.  I had a couple of inspirations in mind from visiting other blogs, but then I had some visions in my mind for what I wanted to make my pillows different.
The first pillow that I decided to tackle was my ribbon pillow.  Below, you'll see the tutorial for this simple project - I know that some of you (me included) like to see picture step-by-steps so that's what I've included.

What you need:
-1/2 yard of fabric (more or less depending on the size of your pillow - mine was a 12x16" insert
-Ribbon (I used grosgrain ribbon and I bought 4 different colors and 2 different widths)

What you do:
-Cut your fabric: for my 12x16" pillow I cut a 13x17" piece for the front and then two pieces for the back (I like to make the envelope pillow so that I can just simple take out the inserts and change the outsides) my two pieces were 13x14" and 13x8"
-Take your smaller pieces and on one of the 13" sides fold it and sew it to make a neat edge:

-Take your front piece (mine is 13x17) and use it to measure your ribbon and begin cutting all your ribbon the size of your pillow front.

-Mess around with your ribbon and decide what pattern with your ribbon that you're going to do.
-Going ribbon by ribbon, pin them on and sew a straight stitch down the center of them.  Once one is done, go pin on another ribbon and then sew, repeat until done:

-Once you've finished sewing on your ribbons, lay all your pieces right side facing each other and pin them together:

-Sew 1/2" inseam around the edge of your pillow
-Turn your pillow right side out and admire your work:

-Stick the pillow insert in it and then place it on your couch and enjoy it's beauty!

Stayed tuned as Christmas Pillow Extravaganza II will be creeping up on us soon!
Happy Sewing!
 The DIY Show Off 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Magnificent Mondays: Magnificent Blogs 40

Glory has a plethora of great recipes and decorating ideas to make your next special occasion (or just any meal) delightful!

I absolutely love these and can't wait to make them in May for my moms on Mother's Day!

We all know how I feel about fall so I was thrilled when I saw that Glory had included this post as a place where I could find lots of yummy fall treats.

If you're going to be planning a baby shower anytime soon, these would make a great addition to everything else

Head on over to Glorious Treats and see all the amazing baking recipes that Glory has to offer!  Let me know which treats you love the most :).
Happy Blogging!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

My Week

I realized the other day that I don't spend enough time talking about what's going on in my life here at what is supposed to be a blog about my move to a new city...oops!  I've gotten into new hobbies and crafts of sorts and have neglected any of you who may be interested in what's up.  So, for those (few) of you who care what's up, here's a bit about my week :).

I had a good start to my week on Monday because I had just finished having a wonderful time with my dear friends, Anne, Derek and Sarah who came in (except Sarah who lives in Naperville) from Lexington to spend the weekend with me and Stephen.  The only thing that stunk about Monday was that I had been used to having a full apartment of 5 of us and it dropped to only me.  Sarah left on Sunday morning before church, Anne and Derek split town after lunch on Sunday and then Stephen left me early before anyone should even be awake on Monday morning to head to work and then to hop a plane to New York City for the week.  That's right - I've been alone for a week...ugh. Thoughts on that will come later.

I had classes all week and I've had this new "pressure" of my new job as a research assistant on campus.  I put the words "pressure" in quotations because I feel like I'm the one that's putting pressure on myself.  The people I work with are incredibly lenient on when I come in and my hours but when I'm not there, I'm constantly thinking, "should I be there?"  "do they think I'm slacking?"...that's me - overanalyzing e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g.  I really need to get over that!
I feel incredibly blessed to have this research assistantship for so many reasons!  The first reason is because it's such a great opportunity for me professionally.  My role is to act as a "liaison" to the elementary schools we work with and our project.  Our project is one that helps schools go through a reform to create more intentional teaching, which in return will create stronger students.  I feel like I'm constantly learning how I can be a better, more intentional teacher when the time comes.
The second reason that I feel blessed to have this assistantship is because it pays for my tuition.  You just read that correctly - I'm currently going to grad school for free.  On top of that, they pay me a stipend on top of it.  Unreal.
The third and most important reason that I feel blessed that I have this assistantship is to share my life with the gals who work in the office with me.  It's an interesting work situation - interesting because it's so different from what I've experienced in the Bible belt of KY.  I'm praying that God will show me how to love the people I work with and how to share my life with them in a way that glorifies Him and shows   how much He loves them.  Prayers are appreciated.

School is sucking my life out of my life.  It's okay, it's only because the end of the semester is creeping closer and things are drawing to a close, which means I have a lot to do before the beginning of December...eeek!  Did I mention that I'm enrolled in an Independent Study and my wonderful teacher who is working with me is going to allow me to turn my paper in after winter break?  You know what that means, don't you?  Yup!  I'm going to have to be working on that dang paper over the break...ay yi yi!  That's okay - don't feel too bad for me because after this semester has concluded I will only have 1 more semester and 1 measly class to take over the summer and then I am DONE - DONE-ZO - FINISHED!  ahhhhhhhh!

I started BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) officially for the first time this year and we've been studying the book of Isaiah.  Let's talk about how intense and difficult the book of Isaiah is, then let's talk about how incredibly happy I am that I'm reading it and diving into it through BSF because I'm getting SO MUCH information that I don't think I could have ever gotten if I had tried to read this book alone.  Talk about conviction and stretching.  I feel so loved by our Father who has every reason to wash His hands of me but doesn't because He loves me.  I feel blessed by BSF, my small discussion group in BSF and my discussion group leader.  It was hard for me to not compare her to my beloved Frankie (my old Bible Study Leader) and I finally snapped out of it.  Frankie will always be near and dear to my heart and she'll ALWAYS be my sister and mentor in Christ but I've moved into a new phase of life and God will bring new people into my life to show me His love and how to better know Him.

I feel like I just left you on overload...big time overload.  I'll stop for now.  I'll leave you with a video from a song I heard on the radio while I was driving to my friend Amanda's apartment on Friday (Amanda also shows me Christ's love, especially when she calls me throughout the week and invites me over because she knows I'm all alone this week while Stephen's gone).  I love this song because it makes me think about all the truths of the Bible, specifically from what I've been reading in Isaiah.  Despite who we are and what we deserve, God loves us.  More than I can possibly try to explain here.  I pray that you feel His love for you in this moment and throughout your day - it's unlike anything else you could possibly experience.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Magnificent Mondays: Magnificent Blogs 39

Brandy is a sewer, a baker and an all around crafty woman!  I stumbled upon her blog and loved some of the different ideas that she had there.

Looking for a cool way to plan your menu for the week?  Look no further!

What a cool idea for a favor at a kid's birthday party!

Did you guys know that I have a manly appetite and could eat Cheddar's Buffalo Chicken Wrapper any day of the week?  This DEFINITELY looks good to me!

Head on over to Gluesticks and let me know what you think!
Happy Blogging!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Great Things Take Time

Back in the beginning of September, before my classes really picked up and before I started this Research Assistantship, I had so much time to do all these things that I love to do.  In that great period of time, I was able to hang out with my friend, Amanda, and craft it up!  Amanda is a quilter and has lots and lots of scraps of fabrics from quilts that she has made in the past.  I had hit the jackpot with her scraps to make this pillow that I talked about on a Magnificent Monday post.  The funny thing about this pillow is that we got together and started working on it in September.  We cut out our fabric and ironed it on our pillow fronts and then the only thing that was left to do was embroider it around the edges.  Amanda is super quick and good at hand embroidering and so she cranked hers out in no time.  Mine, on the other hand, sat around and acted as a constant reminder of my slowness.  Today, on November 12, I finally finished my pillow and I couldn't be happier with it!!!

I hope you have a great weekend!  I know I will, my good friends Anne and Derek are on there way here RIGHT NOW!!!

I've linked this project up to:

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Christmas Gifts Preview

A little preview of what I've been working on...

I'm loving the way they're turning out!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Magnificent Mondays: Magnificent Blogs 38

Jess is full of awesome ideas and has really inspired me in my world of sewing!  

I really love this bag and the fabric that she chose to make it - I'm going to try my hand at making one myself!

With all the different fabrics out there, there almost doesn't seem like enough good ways to use them!  Jess has a great tutorial on how you can make cheap and fast art out of fabric.

You'll be the talk of the baby shower when you make this adorable (and seemingly easy) reversible dress!

Wind your way over to a winding road and let the inspirations begin!  Head back here and let me know how Jess motivated you!
Happy Blogging!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

A Bountiful Harvest

I love Panera Bread Company!  In fact, while I was living in Lexington, I often found myself at Panera meeting a YL girl or hanging out with a fellow leader or friend in between work and before a basketball game.  One time, while eating in Panera, I noticed this great table centerpiece of wheat.  Random, I know.  It just caught my eye and I loved how simple it looked, and how natural.  Since then I've really wanted to try my hand at making one for myself, and so I did.

Here's what I used:
-a cardboard container
-2 bundles of wheat
-1 spool of fall colored thread
-some acrylic yellow paint
All of which I purchased at Hobby Lobby.

Here's what I did:

-The cardboard container had a handle on it - I cut it off
-I then painted it yellow so that it wouldn't stand out where the wheat didn't cover
-I ended up not using my lid, so I set it aside
-I then figured out how tall I wanted my wheat to be and I trimmed them all to this height

-I started using hot glue to attach all my wheat to my container until it was covered
-I took my ribbon and attached it in 3 places using hot glue
-With my remaining pieces of wheat, I put them inside the container to make my wheat "bundle" look more full

Happy Harvest! :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

My husband can sleep anywhere...

My husband has an amazing gift of being able to fall asleep at any time or in any place.  I've noticed this to be true when we're sitting on the couch, sitting at the kitchen table after dinner, even when he lays on our hardwood floors...

And then when I flashed this picture, it stirred the hibernating bear...

hopefully, one day, we'll have kids that sleep as soundly as he does.  Until then, I'll continue snapping pictures of his random naps.
(did you check out his candy corn t-shirt? has "zombie" candy corn on it attacking the "good" candy corn...don't ask 'cause I don't know!)
Happy Weekend!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Call me crazy...

My dearest friend, Shea is having a little baby girl this upcoming December.  For those of you who know Shea, you know that she's super stylish, rocking her specific taste.  With that being said, finding nursery coordinates that met Shea's standards was next to impossible.  This is where I enter the story, with my big mouth ;).  I offered to make her baby bedding...evidently, I was coming off a sewing high.  The good news is that one of my favorite sewing websites has killer tutorials and my good friend and partner in sewing crime, Amy is going to be joining me on this endeavor.  Amy and I made Shea some gifts for her baby shower.  We made her a nursing cover, burp cloths and a baby blanket.

This is the Amy Butler fabric that we used to make her shower gifts (the minky dot fabric was the back to her baby blanket). 
Shea decided that she loved Amy Butler fabrics and that she wanted to fill her nursery with them!

Help us out!  Give us your feedback!  
We still need to pick out 2 more fabrics (for the bumpers).  Please look at all the fabric choses and give us your expert opinion!
Here are pictures, fabrics and the tutorial links of what we'll be making for her:
First off is her comforter.  We don't really have a tutorial for this, just a lot of ideas and guidance from other sewers.  
These are the two Amy Butler fabrics that Shea chose for her comforter.  The solid will be the back and the floral will be the front.

This is one side of the crib far we still need 2 other fabrics: 1 for the other side of the bumpers and one for the ties.  Take a look at all the fabrics that Shea has chosen and let me know what you think: should she pick a solid brown or a solid green to go on the other side of the bumpers?  What about the ties - what design of fabric do you think she should go with?

This is the fabric that she has chosen for her dust ruffle, to coordinate with the comforter.

I'd love to hear your feedback!  We're going to have to make the decision about the other two fabrics for the bumpers and I know that my blogging friends have great ideas!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Magnificent Mondays: Magnificent Blogs 37

Let me tell you, this blog is so doggone cute!  You have to head over there and see all the different possibilities that await you!

Like these, what a fun thing to put in a kid's bathroom!

This cork board is sure to liven up (and help keep reminders) any desk!

I just went to a shower where the favors included these little tea I know how to make them myself!

Head on over to Green Bean's Crafterole and see what you think.  Let me know how she inspires you!
Happy Blogging!