I am part of a group of Moms who does challenges from time to time. We are in the middle of a summer of challenges. The first one was making something from pinterest. Since I don’t really use pinterest for more than a bookmarking site, I made something that Caleb has been bugging me to make, the blue and Packer bag I showed earlier.
This time the challenge is to repurpose something from my closet. I chose a army green skirt i had that had a rip in it. The girls need a new bag for school books when we go to piano lessons, a nice big bag that is durable. Since the skirt is a big skirt, I thought it would be perfect repurposed into a bag.
One of the reasons I like this skirt for a bag is the details at the top of the skirt, they are simply interesting.
It is a nice long skirt so I plan on using the lower length as straps.
After a few days of work and only one real mistake, it is done.
Over the shoulder.
Across the body.
We have used it for several weeks and it is a great bag. I may need to get out my snap press and put a snap or two on the top to help keep it closed, but in all likelihood, that won’t happen.
As I shared in May, I received a Silhouette Cameo as a gift. It has been at the top of my wishlist for awhile. I had downloaded the software and started downloading the free images. Because I had not anticipated being able to buy one until after Sean graduated in December and/or our house sold, I did not work with it or get prepared to learn how to use it.
I am going to start a series for anyone interested in learning about the Cameo and how to get started. I won’t be doing much original here, but rather sharing the resources that I used to learn how to use the Cameo. I hope you can learn some great trick and learn from my mistakes.
First, even if you do not have a Cameo, you can download the software for free, Silhouette Studio. Once you have downloaded the software, go to the main site and start downloading the free shape of the week. Just scroll down a bit and you will see it in the middle of the bottom roll. It usually changes on Tuesday and once in awhile they do a shape of the day, but I don’t always catch those. You can collect all sorts of shapes for free.
Next swaggie (swagbucks for all of you who wonder what I am talking about you can earn “bucks” by searching and the redeem them for gift cards. Completely free. ) Silhouette sites. You will find all sorts of great sites, but here is my favorite site to find other sites. http://silhouettetop40.com/
There are really a lot of great sites to be able to find free cutting files. You can download them to your computer and use them in your Silhouette Studio software. Silhouette Studio allows you to open files in .studio, .gsd, .dxf, .png, .jpeg, .bmp, .giff, .tiff. many sites offer files in .svg and other formats but the basic Studio software does not support those files. There are programs that can convert them, so if you like the file, you can download it and covert it at a later time. I don’t know how to do that yet, so I have not downloaded too many of those files.
There is a message board, Silhouette Plus that has a lot of great resources in one place. A lot of sites offer files in various formats.
For now, that is it. Next time I will talk about what are some good tutorials to watch to get started. Remember, before you own the Cameo, you can download the software and get familiar with it. Maybe you know someone who has a Cameo that would let you come and play. Most of the work is done before you ever cut, so get those files ready to cut.
The night before Abigail’s birthday we went to Chipotle. I love that Abigail loves Chipotle because no one else loves it like I do and you know me, we are not going to go out to eat to a place people don’t like, not that we go out to eat very often, but you know what I mean. It is always a special treat to go out with just one kidlets. Such a sweet time. She is growing up. It is a joy to be able to celebrate another year with my sweet Abigail. I love this picture of her. She looks so sweet (pictures can be so deceiving, bwahaha).
She enjoyed everything about the meal. I have no idea where she gets her craziness from, must be Sean.
Here is my little tip about eating at Chipotle, get double the meat and eat only half of it and you have two meals in one. That makes it cheaper than any other fast food place, but Chipotle is not fast food, it is the food we will eat in heaven, that and HuHot. I get a full order of steak and a full order of chicken, brown rice, black beans, corn salsa and cheese . That night I added a little lettuce. I won’t make that same mistake again. Also, I choose the bowl over the burrito because it saves all sorts of carbs.
After we ate, we went grocery shopping. Fun times. Then we came home and made her ice cream cake.
Miriam and Levi.
We went to Home Depot for their Kid’s Worships. The kids made lawnmower pencil holders. (To those of you wondering, no Ted – the Coke- did not come with us, that was way before his wake up time.)
Even Elianna made one, with a lot of help.
Abigail working hard all by herself.
Bethany doing her best Sean impression. Does anyone know what I am talking about?
Levi supervising the entire crew.
Elianna’s completed pencil holder.
They even had popcorn, Capri Sun and candy bars this month. The kidlets were in heaven.
We made our way home and Abigail started looking for her hidden gifts. She received a number of gifts and cards from her sisters.
Her two favorite gifts, two bottles of sunscreen.
We bought her the wrong Lego Friends set, so she exchanged it for another one, but she did not complain.
Because she is now 11 years old, she has to look harder for her gifts. Here she is searching the kitchen for her last gift.
She finally found it with the crock pots and baking dishes.
We have been teasing her for months that she was going to get Ticket to Ride Asia and India Edition. She was not excited about that. She loves Norway, so she wanted Nordic Edition if she had to get Ticket to Ride. She was expecting the Asia and India Edition and was showing us that no matter what she was going to be excited.
Here she is with the other kidlets and her gifts. She got a set of Felicity American Girl Doll books, a hair catcher for the tub, sunscreen, Legos and Ticket to Ride, Nordic Countries. She also received assorted gifts from her sisters.
We had calzones for a late lunch and then ice cream cake for supper.
Irregardless of what this picture show, she did not blow out two candles on the first try. We all know what that means. Notice also that Elianna is also trying to not blow out the candles. We have had to tell her not to blow out other people’s candles.
Enjoying the cake.
After we ate “supper” we had a rousing game of Monopoly. Yes, I realize Abigail got a game for her birthday, but she wanted to play Monopoly.
Thomas played banker and realtor.
Olivia and I ruled the game, not.
And one last picture of the birthday girl. No, I don’t remember who won. We set the timer and played for about 1.5 hours. Then we packed it up before I lost big time.
Well, it is not really wordless, but there is a great difference between the 1st child’s 1st food and the 9th’s child’s 1st food. Levi got to enjoy his first real table food on Friday, June 7 for National Donut Day, Krispy Kreme. It was warm and fresh from the store and best of all, free.
He was not sure at first when I put the little piece in his mouth, but he did not spit it out.
I was hoping to have a bunch of wonderful blog posts schedules, but alas, not yet. I would love to blame it on all the fun I am having with Callie, the Silhouette Cameo, but that is not the excuse. I am still getting used to Flickr which has a learning curve, but perhaps the biggest reasons is my computer. You see, I take a lot of pictures and I keep filling up the hard drive on the computer. I need to get out the external hard drive again and make sure they are all backed up and then delete some off the computer. I cannot download any until I do this. I do have some uploaded that I can blog about, but that takes time. The computer is having a couple of other issues including overheating in our hot house and the power cord does not always go in properly. Lest you think I am complaining, I am not. I am so very thankful for this computer. It has served us well, but I will never buy an Acer again. The next computer, Lord willing, will be a Lenovo. That is what Sean has and it is a workhorse. I hope we can baby this computer for at least 8 months. Hopefully by that time, Sean will be done with his thesis, graduated, and have a new job that pays a better wage.
Oh, speaking of that, we saw a report last week and it said that new college graduates expected to make $45,000 per years starting out of college. We looked at each other and without saying a word laughed. Expectations and reality are often two very different things. I am so very thankful that we don’t need to trust in ourselves to provide for each and everyone of our needs. I am sitting here enjoying piano music form Bethany, laughter from Caleb and he plays with trains, Thomas and Nathan playing a game and silence from the rest because they are either napping or working on their computer program program (yes there should be two programs there), oh and I have one who is diligently working on schoolwork so she can go to VBS this summer. JOY in daily things.
So, one thing I have planned is to do a series of blog posts about how to get started on the Silhouette. I am sure others have done that and I will likely be posting more resources than teaching anything new. Is there anything you want to know about using the Silhouette? If I don’t know about it, I will make myself learn it, eventually. I have really enjoyed working with the program and cutting things out. I have made some vinyl decals for computers and glass jars (they are waiting to be cut out) and even one for our big van.
Finally, have you noticed the excessive use of “so” in my posts? I noticed the other day that many news people and guests use “so” a lot in their interviews. It drives me nuts, that is much too informal in such a formal situation . But here at my blog, there is nothing formal, so sit back and relax and say “so” as much as you want.
What a beautiful spring day it was in North Carolina. The night before her birthday she and I went out for supper at Red Robin, yum. She had chicken tenders with fruit.
And then the wonderful servers at Red Robin brought her a chocolate sundae and sang Happy Birthday to her. She enjoyed the sundae.
She really enjoyed the sundae, the entire thing.
Here she is on her birth blanket.
We may have gotten in the van on her birthday and drove to Krispy Kreme and while we were there, donuts may have fallen in our mouths.
We may not really like the remodel they did, but it makes a great place to take a kidlet portrait.
We may have then gotten back in the Giant Blueberry and made our way to the local park. It truly was a beautiful day.
Thomas and Nathan solved the world’s problems.
Elianna tried to play with the camera.
Olivia chases a beautiful butterfly.
I supervised the entire (hot) mess.
Caleb swan on the swing.
Miriam walked the perimeter.
Levi guarded the water.
Bethany did gymnastics.
After Sean got home, it was time for presents. Olivia got just what she wanted, charcoal.
And what good is charcoal without lighter fluid.
Here she is with all her gifts and her favorite people.
Olivia asked Miriam to play Happy Birthday for her.
Abigail helped to make the cake and decorate it.
Through 9 kidlets I have had a lot of high chairs. Presently we have a Fisher Price Space Saver High Chair. I love this high chair. Out of the 3 or 4 previous high chairs, this one exceeds them all. But, the cover we have, well, it is gross. Whoever thought the plastic material they used was a good option must not have been a parent. It was horrible. It got moldy easily on the back and it was just gross. It also was not supposed to be washed in the washing machine. It made me wonder if they had any actual parents working in their design department. I finally decided I would try to make a new cover, but alas there were no tutorial online that I could use. I set out to make my own pattern.
I traced the old cover. I then folded the pattern in half and did my best to make it even. I cut it out of paper and then cut out a piece for the upper part. Then I got out my material. (You will see various material here because I forgot to take all the pictures when I made my second one.)
First, you need to cut two of these out. I used regular or flannel for one layer and PUL for the second layer, but really you can use fabric for both. I also cut a piece of batting out for just a bit of padding. You fold the material and place the pattern on the fold.
You also need to cut two of these smaller pieces. This will help to hold the cover on the high chair.
I do not cut batting for this small piece. Sew the two small pieces together, right sides facing each other. Then turn it right sides out and sew just the curved bottom hem, this helps give it a finished look.
Next you are going to get out all the pieces you cut and layer them. Bottom layer is the PUL/fabric, right side facing up.
Then you put the small piece that you sewed together previously down, matching fabric together.
Then the other piece of fabric, right side down, wrong side facing you.
Finally you put the batting on top and pin together.
Sew all the layers together, I start at the bottom and sew around, leaving at least 4 inches so that you can turn it right side out through that hole. After you turn it right side out, make sure the seams are all sewn properly and you did not miss a layer or a spot in a layer. Then sew around most of the cover, starting just below where the back meets the front. Sew around, making sure to pin and sew closed the hole you used to turn it right side out. Sew until you reach the other side where the back meets the front.
I am sorry there are no pictures of this.
Next you have to sew up the hole where the leg divider goes. I simple make a small diagonal cut in each corner and fold the material under to make a nice seem. I sew a straight line to secure and then zigzag over it to make a nice finished edge.
It may seem complicated, but really, it sews together so nicely. I hope you can make your own cover and enjoy a stash of easily washable high chair covers.
Here are some I made for our crew to use.
One of the things I like about them is that they are reversible and machine washable. It makes clean up so much easier. All I have to do it take it off and put it in the wash.
I just got off the phone with my sister :::wave::: and I am so thankful I was able to talk with her. She always makes me laugh, often makes me cries and I always “leave” refreshed. There is nothing like talking to someone who holds all my secrets, but I hold all of her secrets, too. She is one busy lady so I am thankful we had time to chit chat for awhile. I am thankful that God has allowed us to live in a time with phone service, free long distance too. Do you remember when you had to pay extra for long distance calls and it was not cheap. It is wonderful to be in the same parenting stage with my sister, it makes me realize we can all have good days and bad days.
In light of that, I am thankful that God has given me children to be able to mentor and mother. I have been feeling rather discouraged and alone recently when it comes to mothering. I have a solid group of encouragers and admonishers who love me enough to point me to Scripture when I get in this funk, but recently it has been hard. Parenting is hard. There are so many things that want to steal my time, some of them many would consider excellent things, even ministry related things. Sometimes it is hard to say no. As a Mom of children, I have to say no to things, even if they look like good things. My main job right now is to be a helper to my husband (Genesis 2:18, Titus 2:4,5) and to invest into my kidlets’ lives (Titus 2:4, 5, Deuteronomy 6:6-8). Now is a season of working at home, in the home, and through the home. Are there things that I would like to do outside of the home, yes. Are those things more important than investing in my children? No way, for if I neglect the first ministry, the ministry of my home, I neglect the most important thing that God has called me to. I cannot forget nor forsake the primary ministry God has given me. Thank you for the reminder that my home is the most important ministry I could ever have, please help me to guard it and protect it.