Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Hi!  I hope everyone is having a Spooktacular Halloween.  I know we sure did.  Plus, it didn't rain.  Woo hoo!!!!  A group of us met at our friend Wendy's house and were all armed with our umbrellas just in case.  Thankfully we didn't have to use them.  

The boys (and one brave little girl) were dressed in their awesome costumes and ready to fill their bags with sugar candy.  They ran from house to house screaming "trick-or-treat, smell my feet", just having a great time.  And I had an even better time watching them all enjoy themselves so much.  

Here are some pics from tonight.

And in case you were wondering what I finally decided to dress up as, I was a nice witch.  Not the most exciting costume, but at least I dressed up.  Boog loved it!  But watch out for next year.  I'm definitely going to be a blue jedi or something considered totally cool by my son. 


Maddy =) 

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Pumpkin Faces in the Works

I've made some progress on the pumpkin faces. I totally love the big, angry mouth on this one. Since taking these photos I did finish the stems on all three of them and got the felt faces glued down on two of them. I'm hoping to finish these up and get the pumpkin with the Velcro, interchangeable faces done this week. Craft Blog is having an Halloween Contest so I'd like to enter that into it. The stuff on their blog blows me away so I doubt that I'll win anything but it would be pretty exciting to get something finished and entered. Maddy, you should totally enter the Gohan costume that you made!!

The tiniest pumpkin is only about 3 inches wide and maybe 2 inches tall and I think it may be my favorite. I carried it around in the pocket of my hoodie the other day just because I could.

I'm also making this strange little bat. The eyes are felt ones from Michael's and right now it just has a paper template for a mouth but it's going to be cut from white felt.  It has little black felt ears and black felt wings. For some reason I really liked the sad bat face. I tried making it a happy bat but it just wasn't nearly as cute to me.

Now that Halloween is almost past it's that stressful time when I have to sit down and think about Christmas. I've got a couple of ideas floating around for things to make but I need to get it all written out and face the truth of whether or not I have time to make all the things that I want to make.

Adorable Halloween Pillow Covers

I just saw these awesome pillows over at Craft Blog and had to share them. They are soooo cute! Plus there's a full on instructional on how to make them. I love the mix of cotton and felt for the designs and the bright, fun colors. Maddy, you have to teach me how to sew!! I would totally make these, especially that owl.

Happy Halloween Eve

It is the night before Halloween and I still do not have a costume!  Yes, it is true.  I made my son a costume and made a Minnie Mouse skirt for my friend Christie, but have put together nothing for myself.  I'll figure something out I suppose.  I purchased a really ugly house coat at our semi annual cub scout yard sale last weekend in case I was desperate.  I'll let you know tomorrow what I end up dressed up as.  

Here are a couple of pictures of Christie in the Minnie Mouse skirt.  Doesn't she look cute?!  It actually came out really darling and I was so happy to hear that it didn't fall apart on her while she was at a Halloween party last weekend.  What would I do different next time?  I'd make it a tad shorter and use stiffer tulle for sure. 


Boog and I carved two pumpkins today.  I printed out two templates we found online and spent an hour or so carving.  Of course I forgot to take pictures during the process but here is a picture of one of our completed masterpieces.  For some reason the other pumpkin isn't coming out right in the picture.  He must be camera shy.

Hey Jeanne...Can you guess who this is supposed to be?

I'm excited about tomorrow.  Wish me luck that I end up in a cool costume.  Oh and that it STOPS RAINING!

Maddy =)

More Pics of Gohan

WARNING...It's Sunday morning and I'm really tired from a long day out and about yesterday so there may be lots of rambling and not a whole lot of sense going on below. Read at your own risk and please don't judge! :)

I haven't figured out how to add more pics to a post in the spots that I want them. So I'm making a separate post with pics of the finished Gohan costume. While doing so I might as well chat a bit. I'm happy to report that my Cookie wore his costume to Disney's Not So Scary and it survived! Also, he wore it to Miami's Metro Zoo last night (which, by the way, is where we live) and again, it survived. We were only there for about an hour since it started to pour down on us and my boog does not like being caught in the rain. But if it wasn't raining, we wouldn't have had to find cover under the bike rental tent. and if we wouldn't have had to find cover, we would have never had an employee of the zoo creepily call for "Goku" on the microphone. I'm a little slow so it took me a while to figure out that the zoo guy was talking to US! It made Cookie's night and mine. :) He may have been wrong about the actual character Boog was dressed up as, but at least he was in the ballpark which means I had done good. :) And once again, my boog was an original. He was the only Gohan at both parks. And last year he dressed up as a dead husband. A costume he put together himself. It got lots of attention from the Disney employees and he won a costume contest with it too.

I just love my boogie boo and all his originality!!!

Maddy =)

Saturday, October 29, 2011

You want me to make what?

So Boogie Boo decides he wants to be Gohan of Dragonball Z Kai for Halloween. I think to myself - Wow, how did I get so lucky? This is going to be easy peasy. I mean, how hard can it be? It's just a top and pants. Plus, Halloween was a whole 5 weeks away. I would have plenty of time to figure this out. Until he dropped the bomb that he wanted to wear it to Disney's Not So Scary Halloween Party in Orlando as well. That trip was only 1 week away. And for someone that hasn't sewn clothing since high school, I wasn't feeling so lucky anymore.

The first thing I did was search online for a Gohan costume tutorial or something similar to it. As you may suspect, I found very little. Plan B was to go to Joann's and find a pattern I can use to make the costume. I struck out on that as well. So what did I do once I realized this was not going to be as easy peasy as I thought it was going to be? I called my sewing sensai Silvia. And as always, she knew exactly what to do. My instructions were to go to her house with the fabric and one of Cookie's t-shirts. I rushed over there like no ones business with materials in hand. In no time at all, she made a pattern using Cook's shirt, making adjustments in order to have the swooping, v neck look you see in the picture. I really wish I had taken pictures of her at work. It really was something special to see.

So now it was back in my hands. Together we decided what I needed to do to get the effect needed but I was the one to do the actual sewing. With only a few days until we were off to Disney Worlds Fort Wilderness (we were camping with the cub scouts as well), I had to get busy. And busy I got! There was lots of sewing, lots of fittings and unfortunately lots of one on one time with my beloved seam ripper. But to my pleasant surprise, I finished it the night before we were to leave for Disney. WOW...What a great feeling that was! Was it perfect? Absolutely NOT, but my little man LOVED it and said it was the best costume EVER! That was more than enough to help me look past the flaws I saw and be content with the fact that my son was happy.

Now if only I could figure out how to post more than one picture and put it where I want it. Jeanne, H.E.L.P!

Maddy =)

Garden Zombies

Before we moved from Brooklyn some friends gave us a crazy zombie lawn ornament as a going away present. We've been so caught up with trying to make the inside of the house livable that we haven't spent much time on the outside so the zombie has been boxed since we got here. If I'm being honest, I also didn't want to have our first impression in a new place be that we're the kind of crazy people who have a zombie in the yard in July. Although we're totally those people.

Anyway, now that it's Halloween we can bring out the zombie without feeling weird. Maybe we just won't put it away afterward. I'll stick a Santa hat on it next week and it'll still be appropriate. So here is our badass zombie. Ready to scare the trick or treaters who won't be coming since we live in the sticks. Oh, and please disregard the filthy fence. Pretend that it didn't always look that way and, instead, we took our pristine white fence and aged it just for the holiday. Yeah, that's it.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

More Introductions

Hi, I'm Maddy, the sister-n-law. =) I'm so happy that Jeanne started this blog. Until now, we had only talked about it. Thanks Jeanne for getting us going.

Okay, so I guess I should tell you a little bit about myself. Not an easy task apparently. Who knew that my stage fright would transfer over into blog world. Well it appears that it has, but I’m going to work through it and hopefully along with accomplishing some projects, keeping in touch with the SIL and making some friends, I will get better at public speaking/blogging. Besides having stage and blog fright, I’m also a rambler and procrastinator. All these qualities just add to my bubbly personality don’t you think? Well maybe not. It probably depends on whom you ask.

Lets see. What else? I have an 8 year old son (usually referred to as My Cookie, Boogs, Boogie Woogie, Boo – nicknames are endless so try to keep up) who is the apple of my eye. When I’m not working, I’m involved in my cookie’s extremely active cub scout pack, training to do my first 5k, hanging out with my friends and thinking about more projects that I want to do and usually don’t get around to. I’m a procrastinator, remember?

My dear friends, Silvia and Sally, taught me how to quilt and my other dear friend, youtube, taught me how to crochet. I have yet to crochet anything more than a few scarves but I’m optimistic that I will eventually figure out how to do this baby sweater that I’m currently working on. Not only do I want to be a better quilter and crocheter, there are so many more things that I want to learn how to do. What is the very next thing on my list to learn? Mosaic stepping stones!!! Wendy, one of my bestest friends, has promised to teach me. She has even added mosaics to the walls inside her house! I just love her work and can’t wait to learn. I also love home remodeling shows/blogs and I love to watch cooking shows. If only I loved to cook, too, because i definitely love to eat.

Well I guess I should probably stop there for now. I mean why would I tell you what a Twilight Series and Vampire Diaries fan I am on my first post EVER? That is definitely 2nd post material.

Maddy =)

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Pumpkins in Progress


A few years ago I made a housewarming present for some family who moved into their new home in October.  Since I love Halloween I crocheted a pumpkin and gave it a variety of interchangeable faces.  I loved the project so much that I made another one for a friends' birthday the following year.  I've thought about the project a lot since I first made it and have always wanted to make another for myself and so I finally sat down to make one and ended up making four.  I started with the largest one and then once I'd finished I thought it might be cute to make a smaller one with a fixed face instead of the velcro faces.  And then when that was done I thought it would be cute if it were even smaller and then when that one was done it happened again and I made the fourth punpkin and now I don't think I can get any smaller than that.  I just need to add stems and faces and get these little guys set up around the house.

I'm also trying to make some little bats to go along with these so I've got one of those in progress but there's no photos because it's not very photogenic right now.  It's just a stuffed black ball.  I found some cool felt eyes at Michael's that I'm going to add and maybe some little white felt fangs and then some large felt wings attached to the back.

Ideally, I'd like to start making stuff like this for my Etsy shop but it's so hard to find time.  Anyone have any advice on how to work a crafting business in with a full-time job?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Unfinished Objects

Well, now that I've introduced myself I figure I should pull out some of the stuff that I've been working on.  I've been caught up these past few months with a new home, a new job and all in a new state so my works in progress have been stuck in progress longer than I'm proud of.  I love making toys so first up is my little Elvis monkey.  I've really enjoyed adapting this monkey pattern from Ana Paola Rimoli's Seriously Cute Crochet into a Pirate and a Superhero and now Elvis.  I'm not sure why these things all seem cuter as monkeys but they totally do.

My second unfinished object is this cute pair of socks.  It's only my third pair ever and my first that's not just a plain vanilla sock.  The pattern is Kai Mei from Cookie A's fantastic Sock Innovation.  I've only got the toe left on the first sock but I know that there's a mythical second sock hump that's hard to get past.  Hopefully, I'll finish these soon since it's getting chilly and a nice pair of socks would be useful right about now.

Lastly, I've got some fabric that I just purchased from Mary Jo's in Charlotte.  Coming from Brooklyn where space is a premium and the craft/fabric shops are the size of a studio apartment this place was insane.  It's the size of a warehouse with just fabric.  There was an overwhelming amount of options especially for someone like me with no clue what to look for.  I will say though that they had the best selection of toy eyes I've ever seen.  I think I bought one of everything in every color and size.  I've been reading Casey's Elegant Musings and she started a sew along recently for a circle skirt.  It seems like a good, simple project to cut my teeth on so the red fabric is intended for that.  I would like for the paisley fabric to become an A-line skirt.  I love the soft creams and oranges in it and it was the first fabric to catch my eye in Mary Jo's.  The orange fabric is a wool blend and I have no idea what to do with it.  I was thinking it might work for another skirt but I really don't know.   I bought two yards and it's about 60" wide so any ideas?

Monday, October 10, 2011


Hey, I'm Jeanne.  I'm starting this blog, in part, as a way to stay connected to my sister-in-law and co-author here across the 800 miles that separate us.  I also hope that it will push me to create more, learn more and make some friends along the way.  I learned to knit about four years ago and a few years later taught myself crochet through the wonderful world of youtube.  I've now got a second hand sewing machine but most days it takes me an hour to remember how to even turn it on.  I hope you'll drop in and leave comments, advice, stories of your own or whatever else and I'll try to do my part by keeping the crafting coming!