Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Taking Off

I started my seeds a couple of weeks ago and it has been so much fun to watch them take off. So far they are doing great. I bought a little greenhouse and oh my do they work wonderfully. I planted lettuce on Monday and it had sprouted on Wednesday, I couldn't believe it. The last thing to come up was my parsley and carrots. I was getting a little worried but was pleasantly surprised yesterday morning to see little green spouts waiting to break through the surface. Once my parsley gets a little bit bigger they will get to join the rest of his friends in the sun. I hope to start a few perennial flowers in my greenhouse once it's empty. Considering I have killed every plant I have owned I think things are going pretty well. Thankfully I have a husband who reminds me to water.
I'm really hoping these fellas take off so that we can transplant them when they are nice and strong. I'm looking forward to the harvest.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Lovin' It

I've been having so much fun creating recently. Here are some of my projects that are finished! Hooray, finishing stuff feels so great, who knew?!

This is a busy book I made for Calvin, the inside has a Velcro road & car storage, matching cars, a lift the flap page & removable street signs that snap back on. It was a lot of work and last minute I decided to add the batting, and I had to rip out my seams more times than I care to mention, but it's done. This one is going in his Easter Basket.

Covered Wipes Case. Well Calvin broke the top part a couple of weeks ago, but it was still functional, the top of the wipes part would just fall off. But it works perfectly for this project because you cover up that little part, I just glued it shut. Now I have a fun wipes case, thanks Calvin for giving me an excuse to make one.

Slippers! These are my favorite thing I have sewed recently. I have 4 pairs made so far, 0-6 months. I hope to make a few more but in bigger sizes. These are too fun and I can use up my left over fabric, how perfect. I'll probably sell these for $10-12, I need to do the math on the fabric first.
I hope to set up my Etsy shop sometime next week. This week I need to finish my inventory and take some good pictures, come up with a name and a logo. I hope to post some of my ideas later this week, and I'd love some feedback. Once my Etsy shop is up and running, I'm going to have a give-a-way at my new blog, Effortless Savings, I'll definitely let you know when that is.

Now my new love, Uppercase living! I'm hooked that's for sure. The possibilities are endless, they basically sell stickers that you can adhere to your walls and about anything else. You can custom design things too. The only hard part is deciding because there are so many things you can do. Thanks April & Janae for introducing me to my new favorite thing.
It was fun hearing what you guys have been creating! Stay inspired!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Buckets of Fun

As I was getting ready for bed Tuesday night I noticed this in our bathroom. Now this isn't an odd occurrence, because Calvin loves to carry all of his toys to all parts of our house, but there was something about this bucket that warmed my heart. You see carrying around a bucket that contains all sorts of random goodies, just about tops his day. It's simple and sweet. I love the look on his face when I ask him what is in his bucket and he looks down in amazement at what he has gathered. He smiles as we unpack his goodies and I too am excited about what he has collected. I usually say something like, "Wow Calvin, you've found some very special things, what are you going to do with them?" To him they are special and he loves showing me what he has found. Maybe I need to take a little hint from my toddler and start appreciating things I often view as a chaotic mess.

Yesterday I looked around after I put Calvin down for his nap and oh my stars was our house a mess. I'm not joking it was a MESS! I had dishes waiting to be washed, a full dishwasher with clean dishes waiting to be put away, a stack of things to be filed, tons of advertisements cluttering our desk, my table looked like my sewing things exploded, I still hadn't finished the laundry I started on Monday and the kitchen floor needed to yet again be swept and mopped. Part of me felt like I was failing as a stay at home mom, because this is my job. So I stepped back and took it all in and I had to smile because what did I see? Another bucket filled with treasures, seriously I did. And I was thankful God opened my eyes to see the blessing of a mess, a busy family trying to enjoy each other and the talents he has given us. Wow my bucket is overflowing with sweet treasures from above. (And yes I did tidy up a bit but this time I decided to clean while listening to Rita Springer, I never thought cleaning could be a worshipful experience till now.)

So go ahead enjoy the bucket God has given you today, even if it does look a bit messy.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Going Live

Well It's official, I finally have my new blog up and running. I wanted to have a few practice weeks before I announced this thing. I decided that this blog was getting a bit random so I created a new blog. If you're looking for some great tips on how to save money or know of someone in the Wichita area send them to my new blog. Effortless Savings!

Here's what I'll be posting every week.

Our Weekly Menu Plan
Dillons, Aldi & Walgreens deals
Recipe of the Week
Tip of the Week
Grocery Report
And two unique features one is called why I love...... and the other one is Frugal Family Friday Fun.
I have so many ideas running through my head, it will be fun to see where this thing goes. It seems like I've been one ball of creativity lately, hopefully this momentum will keep me inspired.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I did it...they are done!

Last night I finally finished my sewing projects! I'm so pumped, which means I can move on to my next project. I rarely finish a project completely, I am very proud of myself. (I guess I'm working on some discipline.) Now I only have one project left unfinished in our house, my fabric book, maybe I'll tackle that today. I've been putting off cutting out felt cars, it seems so tedious.

I'm hoping to sell these things once I get a few more things made. I can't wait to show you the little slippers I finish next. I love being creative! This is what I finished:

4 nursing covers. I added a pocket at the bottom of these, to store a burp cloth and/or nursing pads. I think I'll sell them with a burp cloth with matching fabric and a set of disposable nursing pads, probably for $20-$25. I haven't decided yet. I'm hoping to buy some girly fabric this weekend and make a few more next week.
30 burp cloths. I still had to finish closing some of the burp cloths I made before so this isn't all the sewing that took place but I was pleased at how these turned out. I eliminated the basting and these took half the time. I haven't decided if it was worth it, because I had to rip more seams due to my ribbon moving. I lined the back with terry cloth and the fabric is felt so these are super soft. I'm thinking I'll sell these for $3/each. It seems like that is how much they run in the stores and these are much cuter and unique.

Hooded Towels. Calvin was outgrowing his baby towels and we've already fallen in love with these. He's so cozy wrapped up in these, he fusses when it's time to get dressed. I haven't decided if I'll sells these, unless anyone wants one. I personally wanted to have these. I have one more that isn't pictured, so I think Calvin's set on new towels that actually cover him now.

So how about you, what are you working on right now? I encourage you to find a creative outlet at least once a month, once you start you'll love it.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Go away little bug

Well we've all been fighting some sort of illness the last couple of weeks. Here's the rundown
Marvin was sick
Then Calvin caught a cold
Calvin got a little better
Then Marvin got a little better
Marvin got worse
Marvin got better
Then Calvin got worse.
I've been fighting a cold, but thankfully it hasn't been anything like what they've had.

Yesterday Calvin's fever escalated and I was kicking myself for not taking him to the doctor. He was acting fine in the morning then it really hit him hard in the afternoon. We enjoyed lots of snuggle time and he even fell asleep in my arms multiple times yesterday, which hasn't happened since he was a baby. By evening his fever reached 104.2! He was burning up. I stripped him down to his diaper and paced until Marvin got back with more medicine.

Thankfully we saw our doctor today and he was given some medicine for a sinus infection. Poor boy! I just hate seeing him so helpless, I'm ready to see this little boy again (maybe without the mess though).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Oh the Toddler Years

Honestly I love toddlers; there is so much development that takes place during this season of life. It’s amazing to see these little babies bloom into talkative, inquisitive children.

But oh is it hard. Right now we are smack in the middle of a very important stage of shepherding our son, and he is testing his limits. Last week was rough; I struggled with loving my child when he was driving me nuts. Marvin was working long days so he wasn’t home to help share this burden. It took every ounce of me sometimes to keep up with disciplining him. I was just tired of his outburst of hitting, and tired of him pushing his limits but I knew if I caved the implications would be far worse. All of our hard work would be undone.

Once Marvin was home for a few days Calvin continued to press the limits and it seemed like his behavior worsened, probably because Marvin was sick and couldn’t play with him. I finally lost it at dinner one night when Calvin was throwing food off his high chair and swinging at me again. Marvin looked at me and said we can’t let this happen, we need to discipline him. I burst into tears. I know Marvin meant well, but after the week I had that was the last thing I needed to hear, I felt like I had been failing all week long. I was just thankful Marvin handled it, it was a precious gift that this mama needed.

Before I became a parent I was well read in various discipline techniques and saw how they worked in a classroom setting. (Remember that Master’s in Early Childhood Special Ed that I never really used.) It wasn’t until becoming a parent that my eyes were opened to the importance of not only disciplining but working with God to help shape my child’s heart. I highly recommend the book Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tedd Tripp. I was awakened to the idea that discipline is not only so that my child would learn to obey and behave it’s about the heart. Because isn’t that where it all starts, a sinful heart. Lately I’ve been praying for wisdom for knowing how to help mold that disobedient heart? I’ve only gotten one answer; it’s not without Christ as my guide. I want Calvin to be a little boy who respects others, obeys authority but ultimately I want his heart to reflect God.

So there you have it, that’s what we’ve been up to. By the grace of God we’ll get through this stage and we all will have been molded and stretched in the process. May our family glorify the Most High even during tantrums.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Wichita Garden Show

By far Scenic had the best garden, I'm a little biased but honestly it was pretty cool.

This is why Marvin worked some insane hours last week! They started out with a concrete floor and in 1 week transformed it into this:

Isn't this the coolest wall! I love the circle windows!
They had a bunch of koi swimming around, this is the pond that the waterfall flowed into.
Here's the Waterfall Marvin spend hours and hours working on! Isn't he talented, I wouldn't have the slightest idea where to start.

Calvin's favorite part of the garden, you guessed it the clock! He started to throw a tantrum when we walked away. This is the sitting area on the other side of that cool rock wall.Inside the sitting area.
They dug up these trees chopped off the tops and used the Roots as the top. Aren't they awesome!
The Bird House, complete with Doves and Banny Chickens

Of course Calvin had fun seeing everything else, he loved that there was water in one of the golf holes for one of the other main gardens. He could have played here forever, unfortunately there was a line pushing us along.
While Marvin was talking to his boss, we wandered over to an area they had filled tubs with dirt and sprinkled in diamonds as well as fake stones. You could sift through the dirt to see if you could find a diamond. Calvin had a blast playing in the dirt. As you can imagine we didn't find any diamonds, but it was a lot of fun.

Friday, March 06, 2009

It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

We have been blessed by this weather recently and we love it. After a long time without Marvin around, he finally has a few days off, I was so excited that he had a 4weekend, so yesterday we headed to the zoo. We had a good time and I was excited to be able to wear flip flops again.
Unfortunately Marvin is sick today, he had a temperature of 101.5, so he'll be out of commission for another couple of days, which means our 4 day weekend won't turn out to be much family time. This morning Calvin has kept going to our bedroom door and saying "Dada". When I tell him he is sick and needs to sleep he just starts crying. Yep that's what I feel like too.

I have no idea how you single moms & military moms do it. I have to admit I'm tired. It's been a while since Marvin has been home. He went to New Orleans and when he came back his company started preparing for the Wichita Garden Show, and he worked long days and sometimes through the night.
We are thankful for a great job and for his hard work, but this mama is tired! Calvin has been sick, which means he has been extra needy/whiny and honestly he knows his Daddy hasn't been around, which has lead to lots of problem behaviors. I'm tired of disciplining him and it just doesn't seem like his hitting is getting any better.

So that's what's going on in our world. I'm clinging to God's strength right now and asking that he gives me a renewed joy as a mom. Here a few pictures from the last few days that made me smile.

I figured out how to entertain Calvin for a while, draw a bunch of clocks in a coloring book. He has spent hours looking through this book and is always thrilled when he sees a clock.

He helped me out in the kitchen the other day while I was cooking dinner. He lined up all the bottles then put the lids on them.

Wearing his John Deer Hat. It's a little big, but does the trick.

If the zoo isn't exciting enough, it's also full of treasures that Calvin insists on picking up.

Enjoying the view!
These are my new favorite birds. They are so funny they look like a bald man with long hair. It was so funny to see their "hair" blow in the wind.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Feeling Inspired

Marvin's been working crazy hours the last several days, which has left me with nothing to do in the evenings. (I'm not very motivated to watch TV unless I have someone I can snuggle up with.) So I've been trying to finish up some things I started long ago, unfortunately I broke all the needles on my sewing machine while trying to fix the ribbons to Calvin's bumper pad for his crib. Thankfully I started with these bags, my recycling center is now complete, and just in time because my table was starting to overflow with recyclables. I'm very pleased at how these turned out. I started with 50 cent bags from Wal-Mart, used some fabric I had on hand and ironed on some labels and now I have a better recycling system. (Thanks for the Bags Mom!)

Since I broke all my needles I had to go buy some new ones today and wow was I inspired by all the great fabric I saw! I could think of a million things to do with what I saw. The problem is I don't like to finish things...I get too excited about the next idea. How can I fix this little character flaw? Let me start right now, I'm signing off to finish one project that I started long ago! I hope to post pictures tomorrow, wish me luck.

Meals This Week

We'll see if this week goes according to plan, my little guy is sick and he barely ate anything today. What do you feed a sick little boy who won't touch chicken noodle soup? So far bananas and crackers are about all he'll eat.

Monday-Chicken Quesadillas, Corn, Bananas
Tuesday-Manicotti, Butter Breadsticks, Mixed Veggies & Salad
Wednesday-NEW RECIPE Country Crock Pot Ribs, Baked Potatoes, Mixed Veggies
Thursday- Cheese Enchiladas, Rice, Tomato Wedges
Friday-Hamburgers, French fries, Glazed Carrots & French Silk Pie
Saturday-Leftovers for lunch & Dinner with my mother-in-law!!!
Sunday- HAPPY INTERNATIONAL WOMAN'S DAY Tuna Burgers, Spicy Oven Fries, Salad

Sunday, March 01, 2009

White Rabbit

Goodbye February, Hello March! In college we had this game where we had to be the first person to say White Rabbit to each other the first of the month. So consider yourself white rabbited!

I always love new months because that means finding new recipes for the month! I've found some great ones and can't wait to try them out.

I did pretty well sticking to our budget this past month. This past week I spent $47.11 and for the month I spent $202.63, I'm only over by $2.36, so I'm pretty pleased. I thought I'd be way over this week because I knew I needed to buy Pepsi, a staple item for Marvin. I didn't know how it would or could work into our budget, but we made it work, thanks to a coupon from the Dillons mailer. It's neat to see how we are provided for, even with silly things like Pepsi. I hope to make it through March under budget but we shall see....