Sunday, March 29, 2009

flower tutorial

Okay, so maybe I have gone a bit overboard with Maya's basket tutorial, but they were just sew cute and easy (and cheap) to make I had to sew up a bunch (21) for our families Easter dinner.

Anyway, I made my flowers a little different than Maya's and she asked if I would do a tutorial, so here goes! I've only done this tutorial thing once before, and I am not one for keeping track of the fine details, but luckily these don't really require a lot of detailed instructions...

I used recycled craft felt from Michael's or Joanne's and cut a strip about 1"x3.5". then I cut 5 humps. Don't worry too much about size or shape, those are all things that can be corrected later.

Sew a running stitch through the straight edge...


and tie off ends of thread.

Cut a circle for the flower center and leaves.

I found is easiest to stack them all up where I wanted and sew them all together at once.

There's your flower! Pretty easy, huh?

Here is a picture of the back of another flower.

There they all are (I only put flowers on the one's for the girls, lots of boys in my family). You can play with the shape of your petals too (I did on the second basket in this pic.) Have fun!
p.s. I added a link to my tutorials on the left sidebar... hopefully I will have more to add soon :)

Saturday, March 28, 2009

on the road

Yesterday the kids and I loaded up into my parents RV for a two week trip to Maryland. Of course we have been inside the coach (that's what my dad calls it) many times, but this was our first time "on the road". There was lots of excitement, as you can imagine, I mean it is not every day you get to go on a road trip sitting on a couch!

After a few hours the excitement died down and Lulu (and eventually Max) fell asleep. I payed for that nap later when at 10:30pm Tallulah was STILL awake!

my first buttercup

So, here is the first buttercup purse I made. It was a birthday present for my sister, so I had to wait until I gave it to her to post the pictures. This is my first completed project out of my Anna Maria Horner stash. I love how it turned out, maybe even more than I like the second one I made for myself! I did not have a purse snap when I made this, so I used a large fabric covered button instead which adds a little bit more room to the purse. I had one more picture on here, but I accidentally erased it and don't know how to get it back (we are in MD and I am using my sister's PC, I'm a MAC user)!

Hopefully I will be able to get my pictures up and post more from our time here in MD. I've got some pictures on my mom's computer, but for some reason her computer does not want to go online! Hope you have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


My parents are in town this week and today we all went to the local hibachi grill for a little Japanese lunch.

The kids loved it... except Tallulah. She kept trying to leave the table and would not uncover her ears until the chef turned off the fan and left the table!

The fires were the highlight of the meal (he lit three) the onion volcano was a favorite with the boys
The kids and I are headed to MD for two weeks on Friday, so things have been busy here, visiting with my parents and trying to get ready for our trip. I have some things I want to post, but they are not quite ready yet, hopefully in the next few day...

Sunday, March 22, 2009

the scene from our back porch

We came home from church today to find this:
I took the picture standing on our back deck... you might not notice it at first, but look a little closer...
Do you think that is directed at us?

Saturday, March 21, 2009

buttercup purse

I am totally loving this free purse pattern from Made by Rae! It is super easy to whip up in an afternoon and can be made from 2 fat quarters. (This is actually my second one, I will post pictures of the other one soon.) The possibilities for fabric combinations are endless, I might be stuck on this pattern for awhile :)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

quick easter craft

Maya Made has a great tutorial for this cute little Easter basket. It was super easy to make, took less than 5 min, maybe 10 if you include the flower. I made a few modifications to her tute. I have a bunch of 9x12 sheets of felt, so I used one of those. My rectangle was 7x12 instead of 8x13 and I made my boxed corner seams 3" instead of 3.5". Also, I made my flower different because "make felt flowers" has been on my to do list for awhile now, so I wanted to try my hand at my own flower. The kids are begging to make their own, and this project is simple enough I think they might be able to! Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

sneaky guys in green

So, my kids really believe in leprechauns. Micah just came out of his room and told me that he dropped a toy under his bed and when he went to get it, it was gone! he followed his story up with (in total seriousness) "I think their may be a leprechaun in my room."

seeing green

In our house we celebrate St. Patrick's Day with food coloring. Growing up I remember my mom coloring our whole dinner green. In the Little White Schoolhouse we have had green milk, green french toast, green scrambled eggs... Today we kept things low key, of course starting the morning off with Lucky Charms, is their any other breakfast on St. Patty's day?

Green lemonade...

shamrock cupcakes with sparkly green icing...

and of course I couldn't resist a little green surprise :)

The kids and I painted this Japanese screen today. I drew the design and gave some artistic direction but they did most of painting, didn't they do a great job?

While I was helping the boy put their Lego ship (back) together Regan headed off to the craft/dining/school room to work on her own project... It's the Easter Bunny!

Monday, March 16, 2009

our japanese house

We spent the afternoon rearranging our living room, trying to transform it into a traditional Japanese living area. We ate dinner sitting on pillows and cushions around our coffee/train table.

Everyone had shop sticks and we had a little "chopstick etiquette" lesson. It did not go so well for Micah, as you can see in the picture below.

These are the scrolls the kids drew and colored today. Left to Right: Regan, Max (with a little help from mommy) and Micah.

Friday, March 13, 2009

don't miss your chance...

to win one of these!
Head over to A Familiar Path's Birthday Giveaway and enter to win today! And just in case you don't win, you can find a few of these in my shop.


I put the finishing touches on the kimonos this morning.

The boys were supposed to have hats called Kammuri's and this was the best we could do without having to go out and buy something. It is hard to tell from the pictures, but these little head pieces we made look more like black hair with a bun and were worth a few laughs to be sure!

The outfits are complete with homemade Tabi socks and Zori sandals (aka: $2 Walmart flip flops)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

birthday stash

So, I have been eyeing some fabric for months now, just waiting until I had a bit of extra cash... Returning to the sights over and over again trying to decide which were my favorites and how I could manage to buy them all and still feed my family. I never could justify making the purchase out of my bi-weekly food/living budget, so I waited... And then my birthday came, and with it some no strings attached, spend it however you want to birthday cash! Yippy! I couldn't afford to buy the whole Anna Maria Horner Good Folks collections, but I got a good assortment of fat quarters that I plan to use to make a blanket. I also got a few yards from her Drawing Room collection that I fell in love with the moment I saw them. Heather Bailey is another favorite of mine and I was able to get a few yards of her Pop Garden collections that are absolutely gorgeous! I have to tell you, these all look beautiful online, and they do not disappoint, in fact I like them even better in real life! Now I just have to decide how to use all this beautiful fabric, I have many ideas, I just have to narrow it down :)

And look what arrived in the mail today! I have just flipped through the pages quickly and have not sewn anything yet, but I can tell already that I am going to LOVE this book! I am sure I will find a thing or two (or 10) to make (from my fantastic fabric stash) in this book.

Look, there is even something for school in this book, we started sewing are Kimonos this morning and this is just what I needed to help me as I was just winging it and making up my own pattern.
I will post pictures of the kids in their Kimonos Tomorrow, or as soon as we finish them :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

konnichi wa!

We started our unit on Japan today. I think this is going to be a really fun unit, lots of crafts and festivities! We kicked off the unit today by making wonton soup for dinner. It was pretty easy and everyone enjoyed it and asked for seconds (except for Lulu, but she doesn't count cause she never eats anything but crayons and markers). The kids loved making the wontons and were very proud to be such a big part of the dinner production.

Here is the recipe, in case you want to try it.

Wonton Soup

Wonton wrappers (these can be found in the produce or dairy section of most grocery store. The were less then $3 for 60 wraps, we put about 20 in our soup and fried another 15 or so).

Wonton filling:
4 oz cooked chicken
2 T green onion, sliced
2 t soy sauce
2 cloves minced garlic

Mix above ingredients in food processor
put 1 t of mixture in middle of wonton wrapper
paint all edges with water
fold over one corner, aligning edges to form a triangle, seal with fingers
fold in half again, joining at corners (adding a bit of water to edge if necessary)
* be sure to keep unused wrappers and completed wontons covered with a damp tea towel to prevent them from drying out.

1/4 C sliced carrots
1/4 C green onions (I used less, maybe 6 green onions)
2 T rice Vinegar
1 t minced garlic
1 t minced fresh ginger
1/4 t salt
1/4 t pepper
6 C chicken broth

Saute carrots and green onions in 2 t olive oil in large pot
Add rest of ingredients, allow to simmer for a few minutes
Add wontons and simmer for 6 minutes.

Enjoy, we did!

I meant to take a picture of the soup in our pretty bowls, but forgot, so this steaming stove top picture will have to suffice!


Max woke up from a nap in the middle of wonton making, I could not resist posting this post nap picture of him! Gotta love that hair! :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

I finally did it!

Today it the grand opening of my very own Etsy shop! I have been thinking about it, talking about it, researching it and finally decided to take the plunge! There are a few items in there right now and I will try to be faithful to adding new items as much as possible. Head of over and check it out!

Friday, March 6, 2009

birthday giveaway

Click on the button in my left side bar to check out A Familiar Path's birthday giveaway next week. You might just find something familiar over there one day next week!

I am working on something else over here this week and hope to have it ready by Monday. There has been lots of sewing and planning this week and I can't wait to share it with you all! I was going to post a few pic's but I just have not gotten to it yet! Hope you all have a wonderful, sunny, warm weekend (I know we will)!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

the good samaritan

I just had to post these pictures of the kids preforming the story of The Good Samaritan for us. The kids absolutely LOVE acting out Bible stories for us and some times beg us to let them do one! We read this story earlier today and they preformed it for me and Phil after dinner.

Micah was our bandit, hiding out waiting for someone to pass by...

The "man" being attacked by the bandit.
Stripped of his clothes and left for dead in the dirt.

The Levite passing by on the other side of the road.

The Good Samaritan putting the man on his(her) donkey and leading him to the inn.

At the inn with the inn keeper.

I love to give them a story and let them take it where they will. Regan's donkey was her own invention and Max came up with the idea of wearing the torn pirate pants all himself. When it was all over they wanted to do more!

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