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!


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.


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. :) 


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!

20 minute crafter: how to make a t-shirt into a skirt.

so i started with this tutorial from "sew like my mom"...but quickly decided that 1) shirring is of the devil and 2) i wanted a less fuss waist...so i made my own tutorial for making a mens t-shirt into the worlds most comfortable skirt ever.  perfect for summer.  this skirt makes me wish i knew how to sew before i had babies because this would be THE most perfect pregnant skirt as well...i'll be making a few more to get me through the hot, hot days of summer...
all you need to make this is a mens t-shirt.  i bought a size XL...i usually buy a medium skirt or size six shorts if that will help you figure out if you need to buy bigger or smaller...the tutorial i linked to suggests going goodwill to buy mens shirt on the cheap but if i'm honest with you...the thought of making a skirt out of a used mens shirt...gives me the creepers...unless its doug's. :) but...if you have less mental issues than me...by all means hit up the goodwill.  i got the bike shirt from doug's discard pile and some shirts from target for $8 and $6...which is still a good price for a skirt. :)
you will also need some 3/4in elastic. 
24in for a small...30in for a medium...36in for a large...48in for XL...
or measure your waist and make your best guess. :)

  start by laying your shirt out flat on cutting mat...i lined my cutting guide up on the top of each sleeve...and cut to get a nice parallel (to the bottom hem) line...
 ...see...nice and straight...from that first straight line...
i cut off a couple more inches...to get the collar out of the way...
 ...next...i lined up the corner of the bottom hem...with top of the sleeve...
...and cut...repeat on the opposite side.
 you are trying to get a nice symmetrical shape.  if you want your skirt to be shorter...now is the time to trim off the inches...keep in mind that you will be folding the top over by an inch...
 stitch up the two sides...starting from the bottom...so if there is any 
wonkiness you can take even it out at the waist...jersey won't fray...so you can get close to the edge without worry of it coming unraveled. :)
 fold the top under by about an inch...you can wing it. :)
 leave and opening to slide your elastic through...
 attach a safety pin to the end of your elastic and feed it through
...sew the opening shut.  
and done!
the perfect skirt!  especially if you have children who still use you as a nose rag. :)

super comfy...and easy.  it took me longer to 
write this post than it did to make this skirt. :)
now...if i can just get some sun on these legs...
and quit getting mystery bruises...i'll be in good shape. :)

i'll answer any questions in the comments. :)

bird stalking.

day one.
day three.
day four.
day 14. birdy birthday.
day 14. again.  my favorite photo.
day 15.  fuzzy britches.
day 16.  two days old.
day 17.  three days old and already growing feathers.

 day 18.
 day 19.
 day 20.
 day 21.  i couldn't believe how fast his feathers sprouted.
 day 22.
 day 23.
day 24. 

today is day 28.  
i went to take a photo of him but he's left the nest. 

this has been such a fun little documentary to witness.  

and such a reminder that if God knows this birds needs...
and provides for them...
how much more is He going to provide for me?

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow 
or reap or store away in barns, and yet 
your heavenly Father feeds them. 
Are you not much more valuable than they?
Matthew 6:26
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