flower num. 1~peony.

 welcome to flower week day one!!
let me start by saying that i realize that i am not showing you anything NEW...i realize that others have done these same tutorials before (their way)....that some (lots of) people sell flowers like these...but i thought it would be fun to share how to make FUN and funky flowers HERE on my own blog...with my own wonderful readers...in my own words and ways. :) you ready to make some? 
 so for this flower you start with lots of circles...cut from a light weight jersey or cotton...jersey makes it nice and flowy...i used a canning lid to make my circles.  you also need one circle of felt. the more circles you add...the fuller the flower. 10-15 should be good.
for the first base layer...fold as shown above...and clip the top of the triangle...
 hot glue the first layer down...add another layer...
 ...for the next layer...fold or roll your petals up as shown above...
 ...add glue to the center...
 ...and fold shut...
add to your flower...for a couple of layers you don't need to clip the corner...just be sure to push the corner into the center as you glue...(sorry i missed a photo here)...
 ...then for another layer...you cut a smaller corner...glue it down...and push it into the center...
 you are basically folding or rolling your little circles and gluing them onto the center of your felt circle...you get a different effect depending on how many circles you use...or how you tight or loosely roll or fold them...once you think you are done...add a pool of hot glue...cut the corner of your last circle much shorter than the first ones (about half off)...
 ...and smush it in there nice and good...you can then add a pin...or a barrette...or headband...
perfect peony.

come back tomorrow for flower num. 2.

how to cheat at making ruffles.

 want to know that cheaty-est way to make a ruffle?
set your machine on the longest straight stitch you can...
 ...as you are sewing...hold onto the thread...increasing the tension...
 ...and your fabric will ruffle right up...the amount of tension you put on the thread will determine how much ruffle you get...
...you can tell in this photo the areas where i held the thread tighter and more loosely...

easiest ruffle making ever.

this new skill will come in handy for flower week...which starts tomorrow!



this song is making me happy.  
see if you can only play it once. 
i learned how to make happy party flags here at oh party.
 to put on these happy butterfly cupcakes for moses' end of the school year party.  from martha.
i made the boys new 4th of july shirts.  
the star marks our state.  
learn how to make yours on this post.
in our house, this is not a greeting.  
this is a warning from hoho that something is coming towards your head at a high speed.  
think karate not hello. 
you can learn how to make one for yourself here.
isn't this such a happy gift for a high school graduate? 
going off to college...with a towel that is obviously yours.
super happy.
these guys (salt and pepper shakers)are making me happy.
my treat to myself for all my hard, long, hours of work lately. 
and to answer a question from the previous post. 
i do have a job.  
that i work from 20-40+ per week.  depending on the time of the year.
they are from house8810.com
the packaging they come in alone will make me shop there again. 
these videos make me happy. 
one, because i love that it is warm enough to enjoy this. 
two, because we get to launch our two year old down the slip and slide.
what's making you happy?

for the record.

good moms can also have clean houses AND happy kids.
it's possible.
it's true.

a few weeks ago i had someone say to me, in reference to my relatively clean house, "yeah, i'd like a clean house too, but i like playing with my kids."


really?  did you say that out loud to me?

well guess what...i play with my kids every day.  i can also keep up with laundry and keep my house relatively clean.

it's not because i am wonder woman or that i neglect my kids.
it's because i am super organized. and i make it a priority over many other things.  but never people. 

i'd like to think i am teaching my kids responsibility.
and thankfulness.

i keep up with our dirty clothes because there are many who would love to have so many clothes.
i wash and put away our dishes because many have to eat with their hands.
i keep my home neat and tidy because so many have to live in dirt houses...or cardboard...or are homeless. 
we put away the toys at the end of their playtime because there are many kids who aren't afforded toys.
i try to teach my kids a lesson behind every chore. 

i make my kids do their chores before having fun because i want them to be functional in the real world.  our family motto is  
"do what you HAVE to, so you can do what you WANT to".
that's real life.  you have to work before you get paid.  

my goal through all my actions through the day is to show God that I am THANKFUL for what He has given me and i want to take good care of it. 
and i want my kids to learn the same. 

my goal is to raise kids who aren't self-centered or think that their pleasure should come before anything else.  which is hard work considering that society tends to tell us the opposite.

we are a family, who work together toward common goals...and then we all get to share in the fun stuff.  and we do have FUN.  i promise. 

it's all about balance.  and priorities.  and life lessons.  and life skills for that matter.

i am, after all raising future husbands. 

all i am trying to say is that clean house or messy house. 

it's not what makes a mom good.   if only it were that easy.


first and last

dear moses,
today is your last day of your first year of pre-school.  i'm secretly very pleased that your birthday falls after the cut-off date for kindergarten...meaning you get another year of part-time pre-school.

before i forget...because i forget a lot more than i care to admit...i want you to know some things about this school year.

this year you learned to write your name really well.  you know all of your letters and how to write them.  you learned lots of songs and fun silly dances.  you learned lots of Bible stories and made lots of art.  you had your first school performance (at Christmas) where you disappeared behind the others standing in front of you...but you sang your favorite parts with lots of pep.

i want you to know that at each parent teacher conference your teachers (mrs. woodfolk and mrs. davis) told me what a great kid you are.  mrs. woodfolk has told me repeatedly what a HAPPY and joyful kid you are.  she says that you walk in the classroom each morning just beaming with a smile and usually giggling about something.  she tells me that you are kind to your classmates, a helper and a rule follower.  she says you look out for others and enjoy playing with all of your friends.  i think that each of the parents of your friends have come to me at some point during the year to tell me how much their child loves you and talks about you.     

i cannot tell you how proud this makes me.  you ARE such a great kid and i am so pleased that others can see it.  i am so thankful that God's grace is big enough to cover the mistakes your dad and i make as parents.  i know that all the good in you comes from Him and knowing that you love Jesus makes me the most proud.

i know that you have loved school this year and i hope you will always love it...not because you don't love being at home with your parents...but because you love learning new things and being with your friends.  i pray that God can help us give you the gift of loving being at school as much as you loving being at home with us.  

just wanted you to know that we are proud of you and that we are looking forward to a FUN summer and another great school year next year.

love, your momma.

p.s.  i love these photos of you from your first and last days of school...you have grown and changed SO much! :)


teacher gifts = done.

moses has had amazingly wonderful teachers this year.
i am always amazed when i see people who LOVE what they do...and these ladies most definitely do.
moses loves them...but i think i will be more sad than he will to say good-bye.
i wanted to give them something to thank them for all their hard work...here's what i came up with:

bucket from the 2.50 section at target.
free printable from eighteen25.
spray painted mason jars.
flower tutorials coming next week.
"thanks for helping moses bloom" tags free from skip to my lou
frame $4 from target.
dino succulent planter.  how to found HERE. 

awesome teachers...hard to find. :)



some of you have questions about the hot mess minis.

here are some answers:
mini's are meant to be slipcovers for skinny plastic headbands that you can find anywhere.  
i do not include them.

they slide on and off so you can change it up whenever you would like. 
they stay put.  i wear them and can assure you they do. :) 

you may claim as many sets as you would like.  
you can go through the whole album if you like and comment "mine" on every set. 
that would be awesome. :) 

they are 3 for $10 plus $3 shipping. 
i will send you a paypal invoice once you send me your paypal email address. 

any other questions? 

see you HERE at 7:30pm EST. 


cake batter krispies. {make these today!}

i'm one of those people who prefer cake batter over cake.
cookie dough over cookies.
no threat of salmonella will keep me away.
which makes these "cake batter krispie treats" even better.
no threat of illness. :)

i also like my rice krispie treats gooey-er than the standard recipe makes them.
want to know the secret?

which is really the answer to a lot of life's problems.
if you ask me.

want to make some?

you need:
6 cups of krispie rice cereal
7 tablespoons of butter
1/3 cup cake mix (HEAPing)
1 bag of mini-marshmallows (they melt better than the big ones).
1.75oz bottle of sprinkles

melt butter in large pot (i use my stock pot for easy stirring).
add mallows.
stir until they are good and melted.
add cake mix a little at a time.
stir until mixed in.
add cereal.
stir until coated.
add 2/3 of the bottle of sprinkles.
spread into a 9 by 12in pan coated with cooking spray.
spread remaining sprinkles on top.

when they have cooled completely (an hour-ish) flip them over onto a cutting board and cut with a sharp knife.

try not to eat them all in on sitting.
several of you have asked about my exercise habits lately. 
well, i am pleased to update you. 
because i am STILL AT IT. !
yes, i have no idea who has taken over my body and given me a will to exercise. 
but it's nice. 
i finished the 30 day shred.  
and never lost a single pound.  but got stronger.  built endurance. 
after i finished that, i started yoga meltdown.  i do it five days a week.
and lost ten pounds. 
i never once changed my diet.  i kind of refuse to. 
i love food.  and i have never seen a diet and thought "i could do this forever".
to me, it's all about common sense and listening to your body.  stop when your body says stop.
i just don't think dieting is good for you.  people already have a messed up view of food. 

i do avoid fast food at all costs.  i avoid processed foods as much as possible.  
i have a salad with dinner most nights.  and it's the bulk of the meal. 
i drink a lot of coffee and diet pepsi.  i try to buy whole grains.  i stop when i am full. 
i do portion control.  and stress eating.  i have a huge sweet tooth. 

so that is that.  
i'm pretty please with losing ten pounds.  especially since i thought losing ANY was impossible.  

i'm lighter now than before i had kids. 

and i will take that any day of the week. 

happy monday!

see you HERE at 7:30pm to grab some minis. :) 



i want you to know something.
i am thankful for you.
i am thankful for your support as a reader.
i'm thankful when you comment or email.
i'm thankful when you just stalk (but i wish you wouldn't...i don't bite you know)
i'm thankful when you support my dream job.  (taking care of my littles while sewing for a living).
i'm thankful when you send me notes in the mail sometimes with a "little something" to say thank you.
i'm thankful to be able to share with you.
i just thought you should know.
i don't want you to think i take you for granted.
i know there are a lot better blogs out there.
ones that are always happy and cheerful.
i'm thankful you keep coming back.
so thanks for that.
i just wanted you to know.
i'm thankful when you indulge my need to share photos of my youngest son with pigtails.
you are awesome. 
and i want to be sure that you know that.
doug has been working a lot.
so i have been sewing a lot.
that is my secret to getting a lot done.
at 7pm all of my boys are in bed.
then i stay up way too late.
sewing and watching documentaries on netflix.  can you recommend any good ones?  
i have this crazy need to be doing something productive while watching tv. 
i can't stand the thought of throwing hours out the window with nothing to show for it.
so i sew.
or knit.
or crochet.
and tonight i will be doing just that.
sewing a butt load of minis. (butt load is more than a gallon less than a bushel)
that you can claim.
i will post them in an album on my facebook fan page found HERE.
all you have to do is comment with "mine" and make sure i get your paypal email address.
i will do this at 7:30 pm on Monday night.
and then i won't be making anymore until mid-june.
i will be taking a break until then.
i will still blog.
(this set of mini's is still available on the lbf fb page)
but instead of sewing for profit i will be:
making teacher gifts.
making these cupcakes for the end of the school year party.
i'll be making these cookies because i want to.
i'll be working on all my personal sewing projects that are piling up.
i'll be making cake batter rice krispie treats.
catching up on reading THIS and THIS.
working on flower week.
playing with my littles.
just being.

i'll see you HERE.  at 7:30 pm on monday.  to get your own set of mini's.  

until then...i hope your sunday is awesome.  and that you realize that you are awesome too.


if you're not a fan of lbf on facebook you are missing out...
i've listed several sets of mini's there that you can claim...for those of you who like to see what you are getting before you get it...click HERE to become a fan and to claim some mini's!
 and i am working on a fun series of tutorials for all sorts of fabric flowers...
 ...flower week will start may 31st...
...just thought i would share a peek of the first three flowers i'll be sharing how to make...

and here is my disclaimer:
no, i didn't not come up with the original idea for any of these flowers. 
no, i am not "stealing" an idea or sharing someones exclusive content...
...so please don't send the blogland mafia after me. 

they will all be tutorials that are out there in some form...but done my way and in my words...and all in one fun flower filled week. 

i hope you will come. 

20 minute crafter: dino toy into planter.

so...i wanted to make something for moses to give to his teachers...as i was thinking i remembered seeing animals similar to these made into planters for succulent plants...i think these are the perfect combo of boyish, quirky and fun.  plus, moses' favorite lessons at school this year were the dinos. :) 
 all you need are (as big as you can find) HARD plastic, hollow animals. 
spray primer
spray paint in a color of your choice
 first cut out a circle on the top of your animals...look for the biggest part to hold a plant.
i used my heavy duty kitchen shears. add a drainage hole or two on the bottom as well.
 prime and let dry.
 once primer is dry...spray paint in color of your choice.
 add fresh soil and plant your succulent (i found these at lowe's for under $3)
 you can cram a little...but be gentle.  add some stones to hold the dirt in.
 cute or what?
 the perfect teacher gift from a little boy...right?
 this one is my favorite...i just might keep him.
i found my dinos at target, michael's and goodwill. 
succulents don't mind being a bit squished. 

moses seems excited to give them...i hope his teachers love them!

humor sells right?

our house is being shown later today.  prayers are appreciated.  
in the meantime, i'll be cleaning every corner and making things perfect.

we have a few of these little signs around the house...explaining
things that others may find odd or bring up concern...like 
"why do these people have their microwave and toaster oven in the laundry room?"

any opportunity to make a potential buyer smile, right?

back to cleaning. :) 

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