Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sewing Day

The kids spent the weekend at Grandma and Grandpa's house, giving us a nice relaxing weekend. It is great that we get this free time without the kids, we really do need time to ourselves. We truly appreciate it - so thank you Karen and Don!! With Faye and Drew in Kindergarten I am not with them all day anymore, but Alex is completely attached to me so it is rare for me to have any free time.

Some kid-free weekends Andy and I work the whole time, trying to fix things around the house, and other weekends we lay around watching movies, eating out, and relaxing. This was one of those relaxing weekends. Mmmm... I love these weekends! They are so rare at a house with 3 little ones. Andy spent the majority of his time on the computer and playing video games. He started playing an old Star Wars game he played many many years ago. I really don't know how old it is, but he first played it using a DOS computer, if that tells you anything.

I spent most of the day sewing, finishing up a few projects I've been working on for awhile, and starting a new one too. I saw this and knew I had to make some for the boys!

It's a cozy car caddy! It holds 6 cars, and when you're all done playing you can fold it up and it fastens with Velcro. I made a red one for Alex, using denim for the back and red canvas for the front, along with red, gray and yellow felt. He spent about 15 minutes this evening folding it up and fastening it, then unfolding it again. I didn't have time to finish Drew's car cozy, but it is ready for sewing! He told me several times tonight he couldn't wait until his was finished too - hopefully tomorrow I'll have time.

Alex's Cozy Car Caddy

Drew's Cozy Car Caddy ready for sewing

I'm also trying to make one for Faye, but instead of holding cars, it will hold My Little Pony's. Since the pony's are bigger, she'll only be able to have room for 3 or 4 pony's. I found some sparkly purple corduroy fabric with sequins. I haven't figured out what I will sew on it - a gray road doesn't seem quite right. Andy suggested a rainbow path. Any other suggestions?

Friday, February 25, 2011


My superstars!

They are going on their first school field trip today and are Super excited! They got their new South Side t-shirts earlier this week, and they couldn't wait to wear them on Friday for their field trip! It was all their idea - and I thought it was a great idea. If they get lost, somebody can send them back to the right school:) Of course I had to get a South Side Superstar sweatshirt too!  Its such a cute name for a grade school - usually animals are school mascots.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

My latest obsession

I've started on another crafty adventure - knitting!

Skinny scarf - seed stitch

I think I must be crazy, because with all my other projects I have going right now, sewing, crochet, and running, not to mention my actual job of taking care of the kids, there is no way I have time for anything else. In fact, I really need to give up something so I don't always feel like I'm a day or two behind, but nope, instead I've added more things to do!

I first tried knitting back in college, and failed miserably. I later tried crochet and it was so simple to me, so I gave up on knitting. But after years of crochet, I figured I had to be able to figure this knitting thing out. So I picked up some needles a couple weeks ago and I sort of figured it out.

I decided to take a class last weekend at a local yarn store, Klose Knit and I learned some great and simple ways to cast on and also learned some new stitches. I was even able to teach everyone a new way to start a slip knot, and some of them have been knitting for 40 years!

My very first project was a sampler scarf. It is not the best, but I'll probably keep it forever so I can see just how bad it really is in the future. If you knit, you may be able to see some of the new stitches I learned here, the seed stitch, stripes, checker board, and seed stitch over 2 stitches. Fun!

Very 1st scarf

For both of these scarves I used Malabrigo Yarn, bulky weight. It is so soft and squishy, and comes in amazing colors!

Made by...

Here's the front of the artwork Faye brought home from school today:

I absolutely love how she is writing little notes on everything she brings home, telling us how it was made, who it is for, and what we should or shouldn't do with it. Earlier this week she brought home several pieces of paper glued together. The next day I opened her backpack and found the same thing again. She then glued all of the papers together, and made a drum?...

You really can't tell, but there are probably 30 pieces of paper glued together, if not more. She wrote even more on the back...

How cute is that? I love opening the backpacks every day after school - you just never know what you might find!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


I'm running my very first 5K in April. I'm really excited, and just a little nervous too. My goal is to finish, and my next goal is to finish in under 30 minutes. Not very ambitious goals, but hey, its my first 5k and I'll be very lucky if I reach either of my goals.

A 5K doesn't really seem like that far to run, especially for those of you running half-marathons and marathons, but when you haven't run in years, its more difficult than it sounds. I'm not sure I knew what I was getting myself into when I decided to try this, but so far I am enjoying it. I've been thinking about running for years, but after breaking my heel two years ago, it just has not been possible.

Where you see purple is basically where my foot broke, and even today, if I touch my foot there it is just a bit sore. I started running in January, trying the Couch to 5K running program, which I found thanks to Mrs. Fisher's Findings. Some weeks were very easy, but I've been taking it really slow, taking 1 1/2 to 2 weeks to complete each week of training. Even though I've been running for 8 weeks now, I'm just finishing up week 5 this week. But my foot is holding up really well, and that was what I was most concerned about, so taking it slow has worked out really well for me.

I'd really like to run a 10k or half-marathon, maybe later this fall or next year, so if you know of any great races around the area this fall, let me know!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A fridge of goodies!

The Valentine's Day Party at school was on Friday, and the kids made puffy hearts. Drew made the red one on top that says 'love you', and Faye made the purple 'be mine'.  We thought they were so much fun, so we made some more with the extra supplies at home.  Alex even made the one on the bottom. I've never made these before, but they are really simple, cheap, and so much fun! If you have small kids you should definitely try this on a rainy or snowy day.

The kids also passed out Valentine's at school. They made envelopes earlier in the school day to put their valentines into. They really enjoyed everything about the day - having the party, getting and passing out valentine's, and then of course eating all the candy!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Beach vacation

We're ready for a beach vacation!

But where are we going???

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The jumper

A few years back we got a fish tank from Sarah, Andy's sister. I bought a stand and some supplies - filter, heater, gravel, etc., and then took the kids in to pick out some fish for their new fish tank. They liked it, but they've never been super excited about it.

I mostly take care of it, feeding the fish when I remember, changing the filter on occasion, and we've had surprisingly few fish deaths. The first two fish the kids picked out, a black molly and a Dalmatian molly both died. The Dalmatian molly died within a week, after having babies. The black molly (Mr. Fizzwizzle) lived for over a year, which is a fairly long life I've been told. Neither one of the kids really cared when the fish died, which was surprising to me.

Last year we picked out a few more fish, and Faye picked out one of those fish that eats the algae that grows in the tank. It may have been a catfish, I don't remember now. She named it Cleany. It was growing very large and seemed to be doing just fine, living a long life. But it must not have been happy! As I was mopping the floor one day, near the fish tank, I looked down and couldn't figure out what orangish/yellowish goo was on the floor. Upon closer inspection, it was Faye's fish. Gross! It jumped out of the tank!! I don't even know how this is possible, but somehow there it was, stuck to the floor. It was a jumper. We didn't tell Faye right away, as I thought maybe she wouldn't notice her fish missing, but she really did like this fish. She asked me one day where it was, and I finally told her.

She didn't say much about it at the time. Today the kids brought home some papers from school, writings and drawings they made at school the past few months. I found this:

Translation: One day or night my fish jumped out of the fish tank. His name is Cleany because he can eat grime. He was orange. He died when he jumped out of the tank. I liked him.

Awww. I think she was probably more upset about it than she let on. I do like her drawing though - you can see a little fish jumping out of the tank. Cute. And gross all at the same time.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Are they blog worthy?

Why yes they are!


I found these shoes at Bergeners for $34 yesterday!!! I was so excited it was making me a little goofy, and the lady that helped me thought I was a little nuts, but she was smiling when I left so at least I gave her something to laugh about. You see, about 2 or 3 months ago, I actually bought these shoes in a moment of weakness. The shoes were on sale then, but they were still over $100 (originally $155). Way to much for a stay at home mom to spend on a pair of non-essential shoes! I loved them, especially since they are heels but feel like you are wearing running shoes. They are so comfy - seriously! But I kept thinking about how mad Andy would be, and how stupid it was to spend so much money, so I quickly returned them the same day.

So you can imagine how excited I was to find them on sale for $34 and in my size, which was one of the last pairs she had! If you need any new shoes - head to Bergener's as they have tons more great shoes on sale right now!

I also found this on sale, and I've been eyeing the patterns for quite some time!

New pattern

I haven't started sewing the skirt yet, as I have a lot of other things to finish first, but I'm excited to try it. If it works out, I'd really like this pattern. You can check out some photos of the finished dress here, as well as photos of the skirt. I absolutely love it! I just don't know if my sewing skills can handle something like that yet.

Friday, February 4, 2011

100 Days!

Faye and Drew have been in school for 100 days today! Originally they were supposed to have a 100 day party and a field trip on Wednesday, but due to the winter storm, all that got canceled. The kids told me that they would have their party today. I asked them if they had a party and they said no, but they did do a bunch of 100 day activities. One of them was to write about what they would give/get if they had $100.

Drew wrote this today:

Translation: I would get my mom a flower. I would get my dad a video game. I would give Alex a train. I would give Faye a My Little Pony. I would give me Mario.

Awww!! He is the sweetest little boy! Its amazing that kids really know us so well, as those would make great presents for all of us! If you reread it again, you can really tell what he was saying, like Vido Gam for video game, Mi for my, and LD for little. His reading and writing have improved so much over just the past couple weeks!

Here is what Faye wrote:

Translation: I would buy with my $100 a robot arm for mom and dad, a pillow pet for Alex, a new car for Drew, and for me I would buy a coloring set.

They have learned so much in just 100 days! I'm a very proud mom, can you tell?!!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Wish I was here...

We're having a winter storm today in Central Illinois, with snow accumulation predicted at 10+ inches in the next two days. Right now it is sleeting and blowing. The kids have spent the day doing this:

They are all sick, so they've been lounging on the couch, watching movies and playing video games. Hopefully they will be better and back to school when this storm is over. Faye has been home since Thursday, and Drew since Friday. Alex and Andy got sick sometime over the weekend, but I'm still fine. I'll probably get sick once the storm is over, when it is least convenient of course.

Today I've been scanning old photos and uploading them to Flickr. We're thinking of putting all our pictures there, just in case. Andy has been worried that a flood (not sure why flooding is his biggest concern) will destroy his computers where our pictures are backed up. I'd be more concerned about a fire, especially after looking at the crazy wiring in our basement. Somebody who didn't know what they were doing sure had some fun with that.

Here is another photo from our honeymoon in Jamaica. Sure wish I was there right about now!