Monday, June 30, 2008

fun with the cuzns...

my sister and her two children were in town for the week of father's day, and the kids had a great time.....

there were bubbles, wonder how they taste?...

a swimming pool...

some exploration....

a fishing trip....

and a lot of fun!

getting a room ready

well, with a lot of help, and i do mean a lot, my former sewing room has been transformed into a sweet baby room.

yes, the walls are a sweet green color, and while at first i did question my judgement it turned out just as i wanted! i chose the green to coordinate with the stripe pattern in the crib set, knowing that there would be no other green accessories present to compete. i chose blues, yellows, oranges, and chocolate browns instead for the complimentary pieces. the rocking chair was already covered in jean, and with the pale furniture i felt that a yellow would be far too pale and a blue far to, um, well, dull!

while the walls are a little bare as of yet, i did create two wall accent pieces. this was both to save money and to allow me more control over the colors.

the first project was to place our little man's initials on the wall. big brother has the same, with his initials painted like sports balls to match his room theme, so naturally, his little brother had to have it too ~ lol!
the initials came preprimed from michaels craft store for less than $1 each, and the animals were prepainted and prefinished for less than with jungle animals fifty cents apiece. add to that $3 of craft paint and the entire project only cost me $8! yeehaw!

the second project was a clock. granted, this clock cost a little more to make, but i am so tickled with the finished project. again, the animals were less than 50 cents each, and the clock parts came from a walmart kit for about $6. i had to purchase two additional paint colors (pale blue and yellow) to compliment the paints used in the initials so that was an extra $2. the most expensive piece was the wooden plate that was about $12. dh had to drill a hole in the center for the center piece to slip through. all in all, it took about 2 days (with paint drying time) and about $20 to complete this sweet clock.

thankfully, all of the furniture came from big brother, so bedding and decor items, clothing and bb necessities have been our largest expenses.

if i have the time, i am hoping to finish his monkey quilt. i haven't been able to do this as of yet because i simply cannot physically handle basting the quilt together! oh well, when i feel i can i will, he has several wonderful blankets and quilts to use in the meantime, including the one pictured on the rocking chair in the top picture gifted to him at a recent shower.

my c-section has been set up for sat., a week early, but little guy is measuring large and in charge just like his brother so induction is out. although, if i go on my own, who knows? so with a lot of help from family and friends, we are ready! until then, i can sit in this calming room and rock and picture my new little one....can't wait to meet him!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

my final llelc grad cake

well, each year it has been one of my many duties for our preschool graduation to make the cake for the reception. i took a wilton course years ago, anticipating the joy and pride i would bring to my son when his yearly birthday parties came equipped with a custom-made, theme-based cake.

ok, um, well, my kid doesn't eat cake! turns out, he would rather have a banana than a slice of mommy's made with love giant elmo head cake. don't take me wrong, i'm not complaining, i just had to find uses for my cake skills at other venues.

i have done a couple for pay, but graduation clearly gave me an annual opportunity to drive myself into a pastry frenzy trying to concoct the perfect multi-tiered cake that would not only be large enough to feed 200 people (yup, that many!) but would also provide the strongest flexing of my creative muscles.

this year i had no real grad responsibilities because i am no longer the director, but with the pregnancy i had to really reign myself in.

i went with a three-layered square cake. found the bottom two pans on ebay and squared off a rectangle for the top.

to make icing easier and reduce crumbs, i did a light crumb-layer of icing, then made a large batch of marshmallow fondant to cover all three layers.

i love marshmallow fondant for so many reasons. first, it is CHEAP! all three layers cost me one bag of powdered sugar and a bag of mini-marshmallows....compared to the $12 for a box of wilton fondant. also, it tastes a lot better. i can't tell you how many people will peel the other off a cake slice, but this stuff gets eaten.the other great thing about fondant is that you can color it and roll it out like play dough to decorate.

how much more preschool-y can you get! i colored and rolled out the mmf to make the stars, and glued them to the fondant base with some vanilla food coloring.

once at school, i put the layers together, added the stars around the base and on the sides of each layer, and titled the top.

all in all, a very successful and yummy piece of work. and best of all, when i make the cake i don't eat it...having spent the previous 2 days with my whole house smelling all cakeish.

i'll post pics from the ceremony later this week. it was quite precious.

oh, and i didn't cry, lol!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

a little pomp...and circumstance?

yup, my handsome little man is graduating from preschool on friday. he has woken up each morning enthusiastically counting down until the big night! surprisingly, i am just as excited as he is about it. uh oh, maybe i am missing that sentimental mommy gene that compels others of my kind to weep and cling to their offspring on such classic occasions....hmm....
naw, i think that i am simply proud of his independence and confidence in himself. after all, he has been working right along with me here at the preschool from it's beginning 5 years ago. he has had the benefits of having me close by while still getting to have other christian adults sowing into him both spiritually and academically. while he naturally loves to socialize, he can get along with anyone, i have been close when he needed me. when he has needed some extra...ahem, guidance... i have been there to correct and instruct. and when his ego has needed a boost, he has benefited from a host of folks around him to remind him of who The Lord says he is, and that he can do all things through God!
ok, so why am i not delicately tapping my eyes with a tissue? well, he does still climb in my lap at night for cuddles, he still wants me to play games and sing songs, he doesn't hesitate to take my hand and walk beside me in public, and he still asks for my help when it is needed.
...and it's not friday night yet.....

Sunday, June 01, 2008

out with the old....

goodbye my quilty sewing haven....

you've a new little boy to get ready for...
on the agenda:
  1. a new coat of paint
  2. window topper
  3. new light fixture (with ceiling fan)
  4. dresser (from big brother's room)
  5. rocker & crib (from storage)
  6. extra shelf/rod in closet
  7. misc. decor items.
update:....painting is done (thanks mom and dad!!!), crib is coming outta storage tomorrow, and furniture is being prepared for painting. uh uh uh, no pics till it is ready :)

one for t. and one for me....

from this...

the pattern came from the summer 07 fons and porter quilts for kids magazine.

yummy moda fabric was discovered when visiting a local shop during this years shop hop. at about $12 a yard, the prequilted was pricey, but being a sucker for pretty things, home it came.
when visiting, cousin t. picked out some pick and chocolate fabric from moda and while we contemplated sewing them together in cousinly joy, magazine reading, spa visits, and girl talk won out instead. so, being as how i love her so much i offered to throw a bag together for her while doing one for myself. can u believe? the brave gal actually left the fabric with me.
the pattern was well-written and fairly easy, although the zipper was a little tricky. hint, unzip the bag partially before finishing your final seam 'cause you feel a little ridiculous trying to turn the bag inside out when you can't get the zipper undone from the inside.....not that im speaking from experience or anything, but you know its bad when your 5-year-old comes in and asks, "mommy, why are you fighting with the bag?"

anywho, mine will be used as my "hey im in labor lets get to the hospital" bag, while hers, hopefully, will be soon packed to accompany her back to see me soon! LOL! more importantly, i know it will give her a smile when she opens the usps box on monday.