Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween!

Yet another week has gone by and I haven't had time to post. I found a few minutes today so here is an update.

I worked on writing down my pattern for the hand sanitizer clippies and the pattern is now available at my Etsy shop. (Look to your right) It took longer for me to get the pattern written than it did to make the 4 that I have already made!

I tested a pattern for a friend on Crochetville. Baby A has adopted both of them before I could finish up their faces. Their names are BonBon and Bibi.

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Then there was trick or treat night. Good ol' WV thinks that if we don't allow children to go door to door begging for candy on the weekend or actually on Halloween there won't be as many problems. As a result we went trick or treating on Thursday. This year baby A was old enough to understand (sort of) what was going on . Daddy walked with her up to a few doors (those that had flat level walkways). When he got tired of carrying her we put her in the stroller. I think she realized she wasn't getting any candy that way (this was the first time she had candy to eat also!) as we walked past one house and she saw her siblings walk up the the woman and walk away with candy. I think this because it was at that time she stuck her hand out towards the woman and yelled, "my bite! my bite!" as she open and closed her hand. Needless to say she got candy at that house! Here are some pics of the kids in their costumes. J has been the guy off of Scream ever since the movie came out. We just buy a new mask after Halloween each year. K went as a smarty pants (smarties candies taped to her pants), H was Abby off of NCIS, and baby A was a hot pink octopus.

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So, what else? I started on a bracelet for K. It is made from a pattern for a fancy filligree bookmark that I found on Ravelry. I have 10 blocks done on J's pillowghan. Only 14 more to go! Here is a pic of one of the blocks. It is called Waldo's Puzzle

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So, there is the very brief rundown of what I have been doing. Still have lots more on my plate and I seem to keep adding things to it. I doubt I will get it all done by Christmas, but I can try!

Love,

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Counting down the days...

Do you realize there are only 58 days until Christmas!?! That really isn't a lot of time if you are doing a handmade Christmas! It also doesn't help when I keep running across adorable patterns that I want to make! This months issue of Talking Crochet has a free pattern from Crochet! magazine for the most adorable Christmas ornaments. (I know that is adorable twice in the same paragraph, but they really are!) You can get the pattern here. It includes a reindeer, snowman, gingy, and elf.

I have 4 blocks done on J's pillowgan, only 20 to go. Each of the kids has a hat made up. Still haven't made the pattern for the girls headbands. I also want to make the girls some necklaces and maybe earrings from some beads I have. J is difficult as I really don't know what to make for an 11 year old boy. Any ideas out there?

Love,

Friday, October 23, 2009

5 Freebies Friday

I spent yesterday feeling awful. I had some sort of 24 hour bug that gave me a tremendous headache, upset stomach and I was exhausted. Baby A was so concerned that she wouldn't leave my side as I laid on the couch. It really was cute how she would go and get her favorite toys and bring them to me and then she would sit on the floor beside the couch to play. It never ceases to amaze me just how much little ones understand and how compassionate and loving they innately are. Fortunately hubby was home and able to tend to me until the kids went to bed. I also want to say thank you to a good friend who went out of her way to bring soup, sandwiches and fruit over. (Hubby wants you to make the roast for the next church dinner, and I think he would have eaten all of the soup himself if I had let him!) I frequently thank God for leading us to our current church where we have made so many new good friends! This church feels so much like family.

I did manage to complete two more blocks for J's pillowghan. I am using a pattern called Waldo's Puzzle in two different shades of blue and a dark green. J picked out the colors. It is for our handmade Christmas. That puts me up to 4 blocks completed and 20 to go. After you get the center circles worked it goes really quickly, but the last circle is kind of tricky. I disassembled the final circle of 1 block about 7 times before I finally got it right. Hubby saw the completed blocks and now he wants one because it is "different" and "unique". That won't happen by Christmas. Besides, he got a snowflake afghan for Christmas last year.

I plan to complete another block today, finish up the crochet squirrel to go with a book as a gift, and hopefully design a headband pattern for the girls. I have it pictured, just have to work it up and write down the pattern. I have also added several items to my "to do" list. I get on Ravelry and Crochetville and find so many adorable things that I want to make! On Ravelry I am SunflowersatHome and on Crochetville I am mom-of-4.

If you hadn't noticed, I put a few items in my new Etsy shop. You can view it on the right. I don't know if completed items or patterns will sell better, or if either will even sell, but I hope to sell a few things. One of my items is the completed version of my mini ami pumpkin which is currently available as a free pattern here and is being considered for inclusion in the Pattern a Day 2011 calendar. If they accept it I will remove the pattern from the website. The other item is my hand sanitizer clippies. I have sold one locally this past week.

That brings me to this weeks freebies. Pickings are getting slim, I wonder if that is because we are getting closer to Christmas? Hope not!

Free Kashi Granola Bar This link takes you to a banner you have to click to then go to the site to get the freebie. Still, I love granola bars!

Build and Grow Clinic at Lowes tomorrow is a Frankenstring Magic string kit. Looks kind of neat so I may drag the kids out to this one. I know they would enjoy it! Just be sure to visit the site and register. Also, this is limited to the first 50 children per store. They will get the kit, a pair of goggles, and an apron.

Free KFC grilled chicken on Monday the 26th. No coupon necessary, just walk in and ask for it. You can read about it here I doubt I will do this one after the last freebie they had and then did not honor many of the coupons. Still, if you like the grilled chicken and are out for lunch anyway it might be worth stopping in.

Free $15 Gift Certificate code for Kodak Gallery I already got mine by email and plan to use it to create a photobook as a Christmas gift. The $15 won't cover shipping for items but you can still get a lot of stuff on the site for less than $15.

Finally, Picture People is offering a free sheet of Halloween wallet prints as well as a coupon for a free 8 X10 or 10X13 portrait and 20% off additional sheets purchased. They don't even charge a sitting fee!

Hope everyone has a great weekend! Talk to you Monday.

Love,

Monday, October 19, 2009

Monday Musings

It has been another great weekend. Hubby got to go hunting on Saturday with H. I still don't have any successful hunting children, but they got to spend the morning together which they seemed to enjoy. Hubby bagged several squirrels.

In addition we were able to spend a wonderful afternoon after church at a fellowship lunch with our church family. Great food and good company make for a happy day. It still amazes me that a small, relatively new church can feel so much like home to us. It is great knowing that we have found where it is God wants us to be, and to be so happy there.

I hope that this week ends up being a very productive one. I hope to put my first item in my Etsy shop. I don't know how that will work out, but everyone who has seen my hand sanitizer clippies has suggested I sell them so I decided to give it a go. That means that I won't be offering that pattern on here as a freebie. I also plan to design a headband pattern to make for the girls for Christmas presents. I need to complete 5 12 inch crochet squares for J's Christmas pillowghan. I need to finish the sweater I am making for God's Tiny Angels and start on baby A's sweater. I also want to get to Wal-mart and purchase some heavy fusible interfacing to make a Bible cover for each of the kids for Christmas as well. I had intended to work on presents throughout the year since this is supposed to be a homemade Christmas. Like most things though I put it off and now I will be scrambling for the next 2 months trying to get it all done!

I did do this weeks scripture card. I used the "ecouraging word" from KLove today. I think it is timeless and sometimes we all need to be reminded of this simple truth.

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Anger has been my thorn lately. It may be due to lack of sleep, but that is not an excuse. Hopefully if I focus on this verse this week I will be better able to react to life and turn it over to God. As always, please click the image to download a better resolution suitable for printing. Feel free to use this image, but if you post it somewhere please include a link back to my blog! Have a great week!

Love,

Friday, October 16, 2009

5 Freebies Friday

Today has been pumpkin day! Last night I roasted a pumpkin and pureed the meat(???) in preparation of a dish I am planning to bring to the church lunch this Sunday. I know that a lot of people say you should only use the small pumpkins to make pumpkin puree for baking, but I ALWAYS use the large, regular pumpkins and I get a really good flavor from them. They do end up more stringy after roasting but if you puree it you can't tell the difference.

I ended up with about 15-20 cups of pumpkin puree! So today baby A and I made pumpkin muffins and roasted pumpkin seeds. Well, I cooked and baby A got shooed out of the kitched every time I had to open the oven to stir the seeds but she got to taste test the muffins and seeds and both got her seal of approval! (In other words she kept going back into the kitchen pointing on the counter where everything was and saying "bite!") Now to be honest, I messed up the muffin recipe. I was transcribing from the computer screen onto scrap paper while baby A kept bringing me her toy phone to "talk" on and then screaming because I had her phone. so I was trying to write, keep the laptop away from her fingers, talk on the toy phone long enough that she didn't think I was ignoring her and scream but not so long that she thought I was hogging it and scream since hubby is trying to sleep. (Have I mentioned that I hate him working nights again!) As a result I transcribed incorrectly and thought I needed an entire 15 oz can of pumpkin which translates into 2 cups pumpkin puree. The recipe ACTUALLY called for 1 cup pumpkin from a 15 oz can. Oh well, they taste really pumpkiny (is that a word?) The recipe is used can be found at Smitten Kitchen for the muffins. I made my own pumpkin pie spice using 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ginger, 1/8 tsp cloves and 1/8 tsp nutmeg. (use all of this as the sub for 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice or you can cut the cinnamon in half and keep everything else the same) Here are my muffins:
I also tried something new with the pumkin seeds. Hubby doesn't like toasted pumpkin seeds and since pumpkin seeds help lower cholesterol, prevent prostate problems, help with bladder problems, treat depression, prevent osteoperosis, are an anti-inflamatory, prevent kidney stones, can help prevent many cancers and 1/2 cup contains almost all of your daily dose of magnesium (which most of us don't get!) I really would like for him, and all of us, to give them a try again. (You can check out the benefits of magnesium by clicking here and about the benefits of pumpkin seeds here) So I tried a new recipe that sounded like it would be similar to the flavor of Chex Mix. I like it, and so does baby A, but the flavor is weak. I will double everyting but the margerine (I used 1 Tbsp of Olive oil instead of the margerine anyway) next time I make these. You can find the recipe on AllRecipe.com These are mine:So, on to this weeks five freebies.

Free copy of The Purpose of Christmas by Rick Warren This one is limited so better get to it quick!

While I much prefer to curl up with a real paper book, I know that many of you want the benefits of listening to audio books. You can download hundreds (over 400) of free audio books at AudioBooks.net

Free $5 Kohl's gift card if you join their mailing list. You will also get a coupon for 10% of your next online Kohl's purchase.

3 free bead jewelry Make and Takes at Michael's craft stores tomorrow. These are a while supplies last event so don't put it off!

Finally calendars - Back to the Bible calendar, devotional calendar from Ron Hutchcraft ministries, Women's health calendar, Joyce Meyers calendar, New Yorker poster calendar, IRS calendar, and Pulp fiction desk calendar to get you started. All of these are actual calendars, not downloads.

Have a great weekend!
Love,

Monday, October 12, 2009

Monday Musings

Have you ever had one of those weeks where it just feels like nothing is going right for you? Last week was one of those for me. I felt like no matter what I tried to do roadblocks kept popping up and I kept getting more and more frustrated and aggravated. It took 4 days to make the hand sanitizer sleeves which was nuts since they only take about 20 minutes to make each one. I didn't finish J's hat until just a few hours ago. The list goes on and on of things that I didn't get accomplished.

I spent half of the church service outside with baby A because she was in a fowl mood and wouldn't stay quiet. Fortunately I am the person who maintains the website so I get a copy of the sermon to edit and post every Sunday. This weeks sermon really hit home with me.

Pastor Doss spoke on how we tend to come up with tons of excuses about not having time to do anything. I really felt that way lately. One of the things that he said was that we need to look at our time differently, more like money. Rather than "spending" our time we need to "invest" it. Examine the activity and decide if it will add value to our life. I have to admit that many of the things that I did last week that prevented me from accomplishing many of my tasks added little to no value to my life.

The second thing that he said that really hit home with me was this... it isn't MY time. Seriously, how often have we all said that "I just don't have time to do that"? Whether it be a daily Bible Study, daily prayer time, helping out at church, sending someone a card to let them know they are thought of and not alone. The reality of the matter is that it isn't MY time. I only have the time that God has given me. I don't know how much that is so I should make sure that I am investing it in the the things that matter, the things that are truly important to me.

And that is why I have chosen Psalm 90:12 for this weeks scripture card. Take a minute and consider just how short life really is so that you can prioritize and spend what time you have been given wisely.

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As always, feel free to click the above picture so that you can download a higher resolution image suitable for printing. If you chose to post this on your own site or blog, please give credit and a link to my blog.

Love,

Thursday, October 8, 2009

ramblings

It has been a strange week. Hubby is now working nights until at least January 1, which makes it interesting with baby A in the house. Especially with her teething again. She does pretty well in the morning, but the afternoons are a bit more difficult.

I have been very productive this week though. I made this awesome diaper bag yesterday.
It has more pockets than I know what to do with! 2 velco pockets on the front, a velcro pocket on each side, a zipper pocket on the back and 5 elastic pockets inside. I spent $10 for material, lining, thread, velcro etc. Best of all, it is a FREE pattern! It is called the Hip Mama Diaper Bag. Instructions are available at A Mingled Yarn. If you decide to make it here are a few pointers. The original is made with a vinyl lining which will add extra sturdiness to it. Mine is made with a fabric lining. If you decide to use fabric I would suggest you buy an extra yard of the interfacing and fuse it to the lining pieces as well. I did not have enough to line the front and back panel. As a result the back of my bag is not as stiff as I would like for it to be as there is NO interfacing on the back pieces at all. Be prepared to have to ungum your sewing machine due to stitching through the iron on interfacing. That being said, this is better than any diaper bag that I have purchased and when it gets dirty I can just toss it into the washing machine.

I am also working on making some hand sanitizer pouches for each of my kids in school. There have been many cases of H1N1 flu in their schools. As a result I wanted them to have a bottle of sanitizer to keep with them at all times. So I created a simple sleeve for the 2 oz sanitizer bottles that attaches to a clip and they can wear it on their belt loop during school. The sleeve is tight enough to keep the sanitizer from falling out, but not so tight that you can't remove the bottle. K has gotten lots of positive comments about hers in high school and H says her friends in elementary school think it is cute. Making J's today so don't know if it has the middle school boy approval. Will post pics later today. Pics posted below. If there is enough interest I will post the pattern for this. Just be sure to comment if you want it! This item is currently being offered in my Etsy shop as either the completed project, or as a pattern. If you are interested, please check it out!

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I am finishing up a snowboarder cap for J for Christmas. I made the first one following the instructions and it was WAY to big. It is even big on my husband who has a 23 in head! So I have worked then frogged, then worked then frogged, then worked (and hopefully won't have to frog) the main piece. I need to add the bill and the flaps. The pattern is another freebie and can be found here I went down to an H 5.0 mm hook, stopped increasing after row 9 and just worked in rounds until I reached row 25. I worked 22 sc for the brim and decreased according to the pattern. I kept the flaps at 14 sc and just followed the pattern directions. Will post a pic of the finished hat.

So, hope everyone is having a great week! Till next time

Love,

Monday, October 5, 2009

Monday Musings

In case you missed the previous post in which I talked about the free email Bible Study, you might want to check it out. This weeks Scripture Card comes from that study.

All that I can say this week is that I am thankful that I serve such a wonderful and caring God! Do I deserve forgiveness? Absolutely not! I still mess up, I still do things that I shouldn't. Sometimes repeatedly. I forget to tell God how much I love him, how much I appreciate the world He has created for me, how much I appreciate all of the good things he provides for me, how much I even appreciate the things I don't like that in the end force me to grow. Yet, despite all of my failings and disappointing actions, He still finds it in his heart to forgive if I but ask. That is amazing to me!

If you haven't checked out the Bible Study yet, and you want to, you can read more about it here Until next time, here is the scripture card. As always, click the pic to download a better resolution image for printing. If you decide to use it on the web, please give me credit for it and a link back. Otherwise, enjoy!

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Love,

Saturday, October 3, 2009

free email Bible Study

I don't usually share or support other websites on here. This time, however, I am. Let me tell you why.

I belong to a small, new church. We average about 50 people at a Sunday morning service. As a result we don't have a ladies group, or Bible study groups, or mom's groups or some of the things that a larger church would be able to offer. Our church is full of families in which many of the adult members work full-time jobs and have children at home. We don't pay our pastor, our cleaning staff, or teachers or our volunteers. We do have a sincere love for God though.

I want to participate in a Bible study where I can hear how others view what we are studying. Where I can get input, clarification, direction. I want to be in an environment I feel comfortable in without feeling pressured to attend the church that the study is being sponsored by. Then I found Jesus Walk.
You can participate in a Bible Study, typically 4-8 weeks, with an online community via email. There are bulletin boards to share thoughts, comments, and questions. Best of all, it is free.

A new study just began today on 1,2,and 3 John. You can join in by clicking the picture below. check it out, read what it is about, and if it sounds like something you might want to do, just fill in your information at the bottom of the page.

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