mas random.

Can you stand a few more random things?
I know the last couple of posts have been super random...but I feel like they are loose ends that need to be tied in...and are things I want included...when I print this chunk of my blog.
I finally broke down and bought one of THESE...
And now I am working on ways to make it work for me...
like these cute "start of a {happy} family" signs...and some other happy simple signs that I have in mind...you can find this sign HERE...along with all other non sewn goods from here on out. 

I am also thinking of adding some DIY things...like a iron on/stencils, etc...
A new cute towel in the Etsy shop...
Aaron is learning how to use a fork...it's pretty entertaining to watch.  The fork he is holding was Doug's when he was little...it makes me happy to see my boys using it.
And thanks to Uncle B (who you can read more about HERE) the boys have a new little boy sized picnic table.
A couple of weeks ago I hinted to Uncle B that I wanted a simple picnic table for the boys...I was even nice enough to print him out this free pattern for him.
And today Uncle B came for a visit and let Moses help him put it together. 
It is the perfect size for them...and it is SO cute!  I want to paint it red eventually...but for now it is perfect for play doh...or eating lunch...or playing nicely together with your brother. :)

Ok...I think that is the end of my random...I really want to do another segment of "why bother {blogging}" so I will work on that...plus some other fun posts I have in mind...

Feel free to leave me a random comment...you know, to pay me back for all my random posts lately. :)

You guys are super.  And I mean that. Thank you thank you THANK YOU...for the head start on the quilt raffle...you are amazing!! I am so excited!!!
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boys {this week}

I'm not a big schedule person...I like to plan...just not schedule.  I like to have days free to do whatever comes our way...these are just some snapshots of our week, that I want to document...
This cheap sprinkler is one of our favorite things...it makes an almost daily appearance.
We also like sidewalk chalk...hoho likes to eat it...
And this was the first time that I have seen Moses draw fingers!  Super cute that boy is...
He is filling in an outline that we did of him...
And here is me and hoho {eating chalk}
And this is a new favorite...we just got it a couple of days ago and it is already worth the eight bucks we paid for it.  He has a little trouble with the run then slide thing...so he would get on his stomach and I would slingshot him down the slide.  Every time he would shout something different...things like "superman lunchbox" and "watch out orcas" or "there's a shark"...I'd give anything to see into that little brain. 
This kid is awesome.  Earlier this week I asked him if he had a happy life.  He said yes.  I asked him why.  He said "Because Jesus loves me".  Ahhhh, yes.  I have to work at that kind of simple faith...he totally gets it at three. 
This is what you get when you ask for his serious face.
And this is hoho's mad face.  I got him to look at me by telling him I had a giggle.  I did not. 
FYI-in hoho language a giggle is anything furry or cuddly...fuzzy blankets...stuffed animals...minky blankets...cats...dogs...squirrels...any animal really.  He actually says the word giggle...which is super cute. :)

That's our week... 

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made {this week}

Just some projects I have been working on this week...
This first one is a table runner...but shorter...and it is made with a layer of the heat resistant backing (like you use for pot holders) so it can sit in the middle of the table (out of reach of chubby hands) and act as a hot pad. I saw one on a blog that I can't find at the moment...and made one for myself using a random pattern...I made three 10in squares and home decor weight fabric for the trim.  The other side is a yummy orange fabric for when I need a change of scenery. 

I love having it in the center of the table...though I am sitting at the table right now and can't see it because it is covered...
I finally got around to adding another layer to Aaron's hand print...
Each year I outline the boys hands...and add the bigger one under the previous years...I am a couple of months behind with hoho's. :) 
They are one of my favorite things...like people tree rings. :) 
This I love...for a friends new baby girl.  Can you guess her name?
And a nice big custom order...all finished up and ready to go out. :) 

Just a few of my projects this week...there are a few more but not photographed. :)

I'd love to see what you have been working on this week...leave a link. :) 


And happy fathers day to my doug.  my boys have the best father.  the best.  and we all love him dearly! :)
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something for you {a tutorial} how to make a zippered bag.

Thank you thank you thank you...to all you sweet people who left feedback on the previous post.  I love having a place I can share and document not only my kids growth...but mine as well. :) You are all SUPER sweet and I love you to pieces...each and every comment makes my day.  Honestly.  Thank you!

And to say thank you...and prove that I mean what I say...how about a tutorial?
Who doesn't love a nice zippered bag? Once you get the hang of making them...they are as easy as one, two, three.  Just get over your fear of zippers...okay? 
You can click on any of the photos to make them bigger...



Here is what you will need:
2 pieces of outer fabric (OF) (9 by 6 1/2in)
2 pieces of liner fabric (LF) (9 by 6 1/2in)
iron on fabric stabilizer cut to a slightly smaller size than your
fabric(I got it at Joann's)
a zipper--this one is 7in
Iron your backing onto the fabric that is going to be the OUTside of your bag.

Ok...you are going to line up the first items to be sewn. 
Lay your OF face up.
Lay your zipper centered on the OF and face down.
Lay your LF face down on top of that. (I have this folded back in the photo to show you)
Another view to show you...
Line up the top edges as shown and pin.
Sew along the edge...if you have a zipper foot for your machine...Learn how to use it today.  It really does help.  If you don't have one...you will have to sew along the side...butting your sewing foot up against the zipper edge...when you get to the pull part of the zipper...with your needle IN the fabric...lift the foot...and wiggle the pull past the needle...then lower the foot and continue on. :) Otherwise you will wonky up your sewing line.  
But seriously...if you have a zipper foot that you have never used.  Get to it.  Ok?
When you fold back the OF and the LF this is what it will look like.  You can iron it flat if you want to.
Here is the back.  
Then you are going to sew the folds down...use the zipper as your guide.
Now I am going to pretty up the other side of the bag before I sew it to the zipper (you can skip this step and still get a pretty bag)...I'm going to add a ruffle to this one...I like a raw edge so I just cut a piece of fabric yay long and wide.  What ever makes you happy...the longer the piece of fabric...the more ruffle...the more happy your bag will be.  That's a true statement. 
I just centered the ruffle in the middle...and "free ruffled" along the edges as I sewed...tucking in here and there...
Then sew down the opposite side...And we are ready to move on...
Now we're going to make our next little layering...the SAME as before only now the other side of the zipper will have fabric on it...and make sure OF faces OF and LF faces LF.  Ok? Pin. :) Then sew it just like you did the other side...then unfold and sew it down...just like before.
Here is what we have so far...you see how the ends don't quite line up...you can trim them a bit to line them up again...and be sure to un-zip your bag half way.  Don't forget that...ok?
Flip the fabric over and make OF face OF and LF face LF...see photo.
When folding...you are going to want to fold the zipper into a V shape...with the point of the V pointing towards the LF...
Starting about three inches or so from the edge of the bottom of the LF...sew around all sides...leaving a 4in opening on the bottom of the LF...trim corners...
Turn the bag right side out...sew shut the opening in the lining...and tuck into the bag.
Almost done...
I like to use a coordinating color embroidery floss to reinforce the edges of the zipper...using a simple wrap around stitch (whip stitch?).  I actually have another tutorial showing you a different way to do a zipper...coming soon.
Done and done.  You can do this.  I'll answer questions as best I can in the comment section.
Once you get comfortable making them you can dress them up all sorts of ways...have fun and be creative.  Make away friends.  Fill a shop with them...make them for your friends and family...whatever floats your boat. :)

Happy making!
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being shown your own ugly.

 This is a weird post.  
Brought together by months worth of this and that...sealed up by a recent event or two.  Are you lost yet?  Hang with me...I will get to a point.  

I'm not sure how to get to the cusp of what I want to say...so bear with me if I ramble.  In my history with Etsy I have had more than an item or two copied.  It has always bugged me.  For some reason Because of selfishness I have been possessive of my ideas.  Being a dumb, sinful human being I convinced myself that MY ideas were MY ideas.  And no one else was to have them.  Period.  They were mine. Mine. MINE.  I have sent more than one email to said copiers asking them to knock it off.  Always, as polite as I know how but still.  I thought *I* did the work to come up with that idea and only *I* should get to use it.  Dumb.  Dumb dumb dumbdumb. 

I have always tried to tread carefully near others ideas as well.  If I thought I was coming too close to *their* idea I would write them and run *my* idea about changing *their* idea by them before I ever dared to sell it or share it.  I have been shot down more than once with a (in a nutshell) "That's my idea, no."  

Bummer cause really it was an original idea that happened to be born off of another idea. 
Isn't that were all ideas come from?  

  I think there are some ideas that are just up for grabs for making your own...pillowcase dresses, fabric flowers, pillows with names on it, headbands, monograms, purses, bags, photo magnets, towels, houses, gardens, wearing clothes...basically if there are enough of them out there...make it your own.  Other wise we would all be driving around in Model T's, right?  Toyota didn't invent the car...just took an idea and figured it out for themselves.  Do we go around saying "Hey, planting a garden-wearing shoes-jumping rope-going to the store was MY idea!!!!"?  No, cause that is dumb.  Follow me? 

Some ideas are like that.  Some aren't.  Claiming that a photo someone else took is yours? No.  Copying and pasting someones words or design work? No.  
Taking ANYTHING and making it exactly as someone else has done.  No. 

I have never, ever used someones idea and called it my own.  Anything that I have claimed to make myself, using my own measurements and know how...is a true claim.  You can bet your life on it.  

But recently I was accused of that. 
This person was not ugly.  But I was shown my own ugly through them.  I saw that even though they were polite and nice...it held a mirror up to me.  And I didn't like it.   Though we cleared things up...it got me thinking.

What would Jesus do about someone using *His* ideas? 

Um wait...aren't they all *His* ideas?
 
Would I be proud to tell Him (if He didn't already know) that I had written an email asking someone to stop using *my* ideas?  No way.  I'm kind of embarrassed to admit that I did that now.  How dumb.  How foolish of me.  I don't want to be known for being greedy or unkind or selfish.  Because I am NOT those things.  So why should I be that way with my ideas?  Isn't every good gift from above?

And I have done it.  I have staked a claim in something that was not *mine* to claim.  
Even if I have formed a design from sketch to product.  It is not MY idea.  I have no right to be possessive of it.   ESPECIALLY if I put it on here for you to see...or in my shop.  Especially if I have never bothered to get an idea copyrighted...which if my idea was SO awesome I should have done...right? 

Duh.  I can SO CLEARLY see that what fuels that "minemineminemine" complex is my own stupid insecurity.  That someone could possibly take my idea and do it better than me.  Or that others will not know that it was MY idea in the first place.  Or that my idea will lead someone to thinking of something better than I thought of...and that somehow that makes me lesser.

Earlier this week my husband said "If you're not part of the solution...you're part of the problem"...we were talking about something totally unrelated but it clicked for me here.  

I need to purpose in knowing that my own skill and touch will stand out...and if someone takes an idea that I had...and uses it for their own...then THEIR own skill and touch will stand out.  

It's like I am trying to hold on to all this *stuff* and while I am busy holding on...I can't take hold of anything new...I'm so busy protecting what is *mine* that I can't move forward.

I don't know what this means for anyone else.  But for me...I'm going to stop trying to hold on to things that don't belong to me.  Consider yourself getting my blessing to go forth and use whatever ideas I have ever shared here or will share...I hope they do you well...and that you do well for others because of them.  God gave me every bit of talent I have...along with every idea and notion.  Who am I not to share it with others freely?

I'm not saying that I would write a book and let you publish under your name.  But I will, from this point on assume the best of people.  Assume that that they just like to create and make and sew.  And that mimicry really is flattering.   

I want to practice what I preach to my boys in this area...
extend grace and be kind and loving to others.   

BE the change.

And I want to live in a world where people extend grace, are kind and loving to each other.  And assume the best.  Always.  That's a solution I can get behind.    

Me being greedy isn't part of that. 

You follow?

(please note this is about ME.  not meant to apply to YOU...unless you want it to...then feel free but this is just my rambling about ME and changes I want to make in ME...but I welcome your (kind) feedback)

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nothing but net {head start}

Alright friends...here's a look see at the first eight squares of the Nothing But Net quilt here...if you are new{er} here you can catch up by reading about my BIG dreams.
The gist is this...I am making an awesome quilt...made from fabrics and materials donated by awesome people...we're going to raffle it off...buy a net get an entry.  As many entries as you can get your hands on. :)
My goal is 500 nets.  Eeek! Did I just type that so that 1000's of people can read it?

But it's going to be a beautiful quilt...so 500 should be easy right? 
All things are possible with God, right!!! (yes, that is not a question)
Did you know?
  • Every 30 seconds a child dies from malaria in Africa.
  • Children and pregnant women are most susceptible to malaria.
  • An insecticide-treated bed net can protect a family of four for up to four to five years.
Malaria is one of the most serious global health issues. Approximately 500 million people each year are infected, and more than one million of those die. Malaria is particularly devastating in Africa where the disease is a leading killer of children, accounting for twenty percent of all childhood deaths. 

Every 30 seconds a child in Africa dies from a malaria infection.
A child just like yours or mine.  A child that is loved by their mother like WE LOVE OUR CHILDREN!!!

We, you and I, can do SOMETHING about that.  WE can show them one net at a time that God loves them...that people in another country CARE about them. 

As I make each square I pray over it..."Lord, let this square help show your love to someone in Africa...keep their babies and families safe.   Be bigger that we can ever hope for."
I'm so excited...are you?

You can click on the photo above to start buying nets.  Each $10 net purchase is an entry into the raffle for the quilt.  The winner will be chosen, at random, by an unbiased person.  The more nets you buy...the greater your chances of winning a quilt...and...

That leads me to my next thought. I'm thinking that there should be 2nd and 3rd prizes...so if you have a shop...make a craft...wanna send a gift card...then email me.  :) I want this to be awesome...and I need YOU!

So feel free to go start buying nets...click on the photo above or over on the right.  Each net purchase from here on out counts as an entry.   The quilt or other awesomeness could be yours. :)

Yay God! :)
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peek 1 and peek 2.

number four is up for grabs ($18 plus shipping)...number three is already gone.
and I finally have some zippered bags that are shop worthy...
 (8in by 5in and $18-free shipping)
I have others in the works...but if you want to claim this one...
...or number four above...just send me a email. :)

Come back tomorrow for a peek at our Nothing but Net quilt and how you can start buying entries to win it!! :)
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20 minute crafter. july 4th t-shirt.

Need a cute tee for your cutie for the Fourth of July? 
Got ten minutes?
Ready?
You need:
A blank t-shirt this one is from Old Navy
A scrap of fabric in patriotic colors
A scrap of wonder under the same size
An outline of the USA (I googled "outline of usa" found one and printed it on cardstock).
Iron the wonder under to the wrong side of your fabric...trace your USA onto the wonder under...backwards...remember that part. :)
Cut it out...
Remove paper backing...center it on your shirt...iron in place.
Sew around the edges.  Done.
I used red thread...cute...Americana...but not cheesy.

You can do this.  Go make cute for your cuties. :)
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