Monday, January 31, 2011

How are your resolutions coming along?

          What resolution(s) did you make? How are they coming along? I want to hear your stories, so here is mine!
          I've never made the 'lose weight' resolution until this year. I was always slender growing up but at about 16 my weight started to fluctuate. I was still in an acceptable range until about 18. Hubby and I got married when I was 18 and I had went from 120 when I met him a year earlier to 165 on our wedding day. Although I lost weight with both kids and already weighed less the days they were born than I did the day I got pregnant, the weight came back, and multiplied! Until now, when I am unfortunately 189. To get back to an acceptable, healthy weight I have to lose 54 pounds! 135 seems so very far away right now! And now for pictures! The first is a before, when I was a little underweight; the second is 3 weeks after Peanut was born when I was slightly over my healthy BMI weight but looked pretty good for someone who had just had a baby; and the last one is HORRIBLE, it was just this past Christmas morning. You have been warned.

Okay, so there you have it. What I was, what I am. That last picture really does show everything bad! My tummy, legs, butt and arms have all exploded! I have already started my weight loss plan. It's off to a slow start with only 3 pounds down, but tomorrow starts my second stage and I should be getting some great results soon! So how about you? Are you on track with your resolutions? Have you abandon them? Have you even started them? I want to hear from you. Leave some comments telling me how your doing, or a link to your blog so we can empower and encourage  each other! And always remember, this is my place so it is a safe zone!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Giveaway time! From Mackerilla, The Cruzer and Little Cru Convertible bag PDF pattern! CLOSED

     SO... I spent two days absolutely agonizing over what to giveaway! I found inspiration kits, and fabrics, and fabric bundles, and patterns. I wanted to make sure I found something that I liked and could share. It needed to be worthwhile. I also wanted it to be something to push myself a little bit. I fell into a crafting rut so I needed to find something to kick start my crafty again! So after I put a list together of all of these amazing things I loved, I narrowed it down to about 10 and then Doodle Bug poked his head over my shoulder and said, "Are you going to make something yet, Mommy?" I took the cue and asked him what I should make. So he sat with me and automatically picked out this bag pattern. So here it is!

From Mackerilla, The Cruzer and Little Cru Convertible bag PDF pattern!

With this pattern you can make two different bags. The Lil Cru Dimensions: - 12"H x 11"W x 3.5"D which is your must-have convertible backpack-style purse. And the Cruzer Dimensions: - 14"H x 15"W x 4 1/2" is a full-size convertible backpack-style purse.
Bag features include adjustable straps, zippered top closure, two exterior side pockets for water bottles, front exterior zippered pocket, rear "split" open top pocket, large interior split pocket.
 (Also if you don't want to make it yourself she has one for sale in her shop! She also has some other super cute bag items you might want to go see!)

I'll go ahead and let you know the rules, 1 entry for a comment, plus 1 entry for each new follower you refer that follows on Google Friend. You can send as many as you want just make sure they tell me who sent them. So example... Jenny@herwebsite leaves a comment that says, "Hi! I'm a new follower! Sarah795 sent me!" A piece of paper with Jenny@herwebsite goes into the jar as well as another piece of paper with Sarah795. Entries will be accepted until February 2nd. It will close at 2PM Florida time. For every entry your name will go on a piece of paper in a jar and when the giveaway closes Doodle Bug will pick one from the jar and we will announce the winner on February 3rd. Got it? Easy right? So go ahead and leave some love and send some new friends!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My first giveaway

     Okay, so it seems when Doodle Bug gets a three day weekend my productivity declines drastically. I was going to write a post inspired by one of Mama Kat's writing workshop prompts. I only halfheartedly thought about writing a love poem to my favorite food then realized it just made me want triple chocolate chunk fudge brownies! Along those same lines I haven't got my creative juices flowing much more than hemming a pair of pants for Hubby and a couple of pairs my neighbor dropped off Monday night. So I'm going to jump start myself again! Here's where it's going to get fun though. I've been wanting to buy something on Etsy and never have yet. So over the next 2 days I'm going to scour the site and find something to make, or something to make something with. After that, on Friday, I'm going to share with you what I found. But best of all I'm going to buy two so that I can then give one away. So stay tuned for my first giveaway! Details coming soon!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Ice Cream Money pouch short tutorial

Shared on

          On Wednesdays and Fridays Doodle Bug's school has ice cream available for a treat. Which we use to our advantage when he's having a good week or as an incentive. We normally don't have ice cream items at home except maybe the occasional reduced fat vanilla (MP brand from Target-nummy)! Anyway I have been sending ice cream money to school in a re-purposed bulk candy bag. I wanted to make something and this is what I came up with. I love the way the ice cream and cone came out but wish I had done it smaller and that the word 'money' had been centered like it was supposed to be! I am really over seeing tiny stitches for a while now too by the way!
          It was fairly simple, draw up a design, transfer it to the fabric, embroider the image, make into small drawstring bag. Kind of time consuming but really cool to have your work walk around and be seen by teachers and other mom's that say, "You made that?!"
Design it.

Transfer it.

Embroider it. Split stitch for the words. Back stitch for design.

Admire it.

Bag it. Fold over the top hems and sew across to make a drawstring sleeve. Right sides facing together, sew up both edges and bottom. Insert drawstring and flip bag. Easy.

As with all of my projects, I have designed them for my family and love to share with you so you can have them for your families as well. All projects, patterns and directions are meant for your personal use and neither the patterns nor completed projects are to be used for monetary gain.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Okay, so this is what's going to happen... I'm going to ramble!

          I'm not sure if you noticed but I missed posting on Monday. I generally post every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I took Monday off because Doodle Bug had it off too. I did want to post about the project I'm working on but that was when I thought I would have it done! I figured I would go to WallyWorld to get a better, more mint colored, embroidery floss and wouldn't you know they didn't have ANY! Really, none at all! I must say I really miss when they had a bigger craft section. I should count my fortunes though and be glad that my WallyWorld is only 2 blocks away and does still have some crafts and fabrics. I didn't want to go over to the other side of town to JoAnn's or Michael's so I made do. Keep in mind this was after putting off working on the project for about 36 hours! Then, it was supposed to be done by today so Doodle Bug could use it... again nope. So now my 'you-must-have-this-done-Amber' deadline is Friday morning. This means there is no foreseen reason I won't be able to post it Friday, right?
          On another note, our AC is croaking and we probably won't be able to fix/replace it until the end of next month! This probably seems like a big fat PPFFTT to most of you right now because you probably have snow. We on the other hand have humid stickiness, which normally is counteracted with what else but a trusty AC unit. And ours is on her last leg it seems. This is making my house hot, and miserable. I'm now asking myself why is this a problem for me? I grew up without AC. We would open all the windows on both floors of the house, pop the screens in and my dad would methodically position certain fans in certain windows to pull air in from here and push air out from there. Then after moving to Florida I've had AC ever since. The first place Hubby and I had was cooled with two window units, one of which had been installed in the wall! But, wow, how cold Hubby kept it in there was astounding! Hubby usually likes it  around 72. I usually like it around 77. I try to keep the thermostat at 74 to compromise while Hubby is home and turn it up to 77 while he's at work. But now no one is happy because the thermostat currently reads 81. Even with all of our fans going and the screened windows open, the air still feels 'used'. It's not comfortable but I don't think the kids even realize anything is different! So again, why am I so dependent on artificially cooled air? At least the kids are happy, and maybe I can sweat off some pounds!
          See you Friday with a new crafty post!

Friday, January 14, 2011

A moment that melts your heart...

This post is inspired by Mama Kat's Writers Workshop. (I know it's a day late but I only found it on Thursday night around 11!)

(There is supposed to be a button there... Not sure why it won't show up)

This is my first one. I am going to tell about a moment that melted my heart.
     Since he was 18 months old Doodle Bug has had a blankie. Since he didn't talk yet it didn't have a name for a long time, but once it did we all knew it as Vee-Vee. It's been close at hand ever since. It's gone everywhere. Even the USPS! It was accidentally left on Grandma's living room floor when we left to move to Ohio! It was an agonizing 3 days to wait for it to arrive in the mail! It's cuddled on cold days. It's been a cape. It snuggled with our dog Sierra before she passed. It has nail polish all over it from a random bottle of my cousins... he was covered head to toe too! It used to be sunny yellow, now it is dull mustard. The little bear one the corner is still soft but is a little matted. 
Vee-Vee today.

You can see Vee-Vee in the back ground. This picture was when Doodle Bug was 2.

     When Doodle Bug started school last fall, he started to forget about Vee-Vee. It actually sat in my dresser for about 2 weeks, an experiment Hubby thought of. I gave in and put it back on his bed because it hurt to open my dresser and see it there all alone and cold! Then when he got strep throat so bad last month and was miserable he started seeking out Vee-Vee again but it usually stayed in his bed. Again he started to feel better and Vee-Vee was forgotten again. Then one night, while Hubby and I sat and relaxed without the noise of children, a little voice came out of the dark.
     "Mommy? Daddy?" said his little voice.
     "Yes, baby?" I said.
     "What's wrong, Bud?" Hubby asked.
     "Can't find Vee-Vee," he said sleepily.
     "Hold on Doodle, I got you," I said with tears in my eyes. Looking at Hubby, he smiled. "Go on," he said "I know you live for this stuff."
     Jumping up, I quickly found Vee-Vee and had it tucked into Doodle Bug's waiting arms in no time. I sat there for a minute with him nodding off to sleep and realized he's still little. As much as he has grown and learned and changed over the years, he still is little. He still needs Vee-Vee. And he still needs me.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Time for some new jumper dresses!

My little cousin's birthday was Saturday and I made this for her!They live in Ohio so I didn't get to try it on her. Hope it fits! That's one great thing about this type of dress, it has wiggle room.

When I got the scrub top I made that out of I also got this one for Peanut. She is just as excited about it as I am! I didn't take any before pictures of it and just jumped right to taking it apart. It had a breast pocket, and two side pockets. I didn't want to waste any of the fabric so I took out every single seam and pressed all of the fabric. Now it's all set to become her new favorite outfit, and possibly mine. Even though it'll be a toss up between this and the monkey dress I made her for Christmas.

Sorry for the bad picture, I had to pull it out of the laundry hamper!

Monday, January 10, 2011

"Being Mom"

According to my son, who has taken recently to saying, “You’re the best Mommy,” a mom cleans, sews and takes care of everybody. I find it amazing to look at things the way he does and to hear him say what he thinks. At his school they had a Christmas Shop where the kids could get gifts for their family and friends. Doodle Bug was amazingly in tune with what everyone would like. It’s really awesome to see what reminds him of specific people.
Around Christmas, maybe even on Christmas day, I had the idea to write this for my Mom and myself. I’m sure there will be more to add later. It took me longer to get around to than expected but I got it done! Here goes me sharing a little more of myself, and my mom, with the world.

Being Mom
Being Mom doesn’t stop.
Being Mom is not a job, it is a privilege.
Being Mom is coming when they call.
Being Mom is understanding them, because you did the same things.
Being Mom is watching them grow.
Being Mom is letting them go.
Being Mom is always being there, from across the country to across the street.
Being Mom is correcting them.
Being Mom is kissing boo-boos.
Being Mom is supporting ambitions.
Being Mom is late night runs to help with anything they need.
Being Mom is telling them why and not just what.
Being Mom is listening.
Being Mom is teaching morals and ethics.
Being Mom is being patient.
Being Mom is late night runs to the pharmacy.
Being Mom is wiping away tears.
Being Mom is reading to them until you fall asleep.
Being Mom is sharing the world with them.
Being Mom is teaching them manners.
Being Mom is teaching by example.
Being Mom is making mistakes.
Being Mom is telling them no.
Being Mom is passing on traditions.
Being Mom is being a leader.
Being Mom is not giving in.
Being Mom is laughing at knock knock jokes.
Being Mom is knowing they’ll make mistakes.
Being Mom is telling them everyone makes mistakes.
Being Mom is changing plans.
Being Mom is being continuously exhausted.
Being Mom is keeping the kid in you alive and playing.
Being Mom is remembering favorites.
Being Mom is loving unconditionally.
Being Mom is enjoying the moment.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Kids Valentine's Cards with the Cricut

I've shared at


Usually I like to post projects anyone can do, but this one is geared for Cricut owners. Since I'm very new to my Cricut I'm pretty well satisfied at this project because I created it all on my own! It turned out so cute I couldn't help but share it. I'm not sure how many of you have a Cricut or have access to a friends maybe but I really need to share this one! It could also be done with some stamps, scissors and a lot of patience.
Mine is the Cricut Personal cutter which takes 12x6 paper.

You'll need:
George and basic shapes cartridge it came with
Colored card stock
Cricut Color Ink markers to match paper
Heart shaped hole punch
Letter stamps and black ink pad
Clear tape

To start load your paper and set your Cricut up to draw the hearts first. (Insert ink marker and set to the markers settings, which are Speed-3, and Pressure-2.) Set the size to 1.

Enter the heart icon. I use the fat heart, it's prettier! 9 hearts will make one line. You can max out the number of hearts on the display or enter 9 of them. I prefer to enter just the 9. Press cut. Note: I like to do the 9 because when the first line is done and you press the repeat last button it goes right back to the beginning of the paper and over. Once you get to the last line you don't have to count how many more you need to finish the last line!

When the line is done do not unload paper, hit the 'Repeat Last' button and then cut. This will create the second line. Continue with this until you have 5 lines of hearts, then unload the paper.

Next, set your Cricut to cut. (Remove you marker. I forgot this the first time! Insert your cutting blade and return your cutting settings. I used Speed-3 and Pressure-5.) Set the cutting size to 2 1/2. 6 hearts will use up the paper so enter 6 hearts on your display and press cut.

Unload paper and remove your hearts from the cutting mat. Now give your precious machine a break, she worked hard for you!

Use a heart hole punch to make a punch out in one corner and another at the bottom.

Stamp different sentiments on the front of the cards and the 'from' on the back (opposite corner of punches).

Stick a lollie through the hole and and tape the stick to the back.

And there you are, cute as a button little Valentines cards for your kid to proudly give at school or to family and friends!

As with all of my projects, I have designed them for my family and love to share with you so you can have them for your families as well. All projects, patterns and directions are meant for your personal use and neither the patterns nor completed projects are to be used for monetary gain.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My easy apron tutorial

I shared on

I know you're probably saying to yourself, "Another apron tutorial? But there are already so many out there!" And I would say you're right, but none of them are mine so here you go, another to add to the the list!

You'll need:
Fabric of your choice 17 inches x 28inches (longer if you want to add pockets)
Backing fabric same size
75 inches tying ribbon  or bias tape
Scissor/ rotary cutter & mat
basic sewing supplies

Press fabric

Pin together, trim edges if needed.

Fold in half, Cut out a triangle 4 inches from folded edge and 8 1/2 inches down.

Cut ribbon or bias tape to 3- 25 inch lengths.

If using bias tape sew down open edge on all 3 pieces and tie a knot in one end on two of the lengths. Leave the other un-knoted. If ribbon, just tie a knot in one end of two and go to next step.

With right sides of the fabric together, slide the un-knoted apron string in between the two fabrics. (Make sure the string is in between because otherwise your apron string will be inside when you flip it right side out!) Make sure the ends stick out just a bit and are about1-1/2 inches from the corner. Sew across entire top, locking string into place.

Next slide one string into the side about 7 inches down past the contour corner. Sew in place. Repeat on second side. Again make sure the strings are in between the fabrics.

Now sew the remaining edges, but leave an opening at the bottom of the apron for turning.

Turn and push out corners. Press and sew turning hole closed. I kept going and sewed all the way around the perimeter of the apron. I like the look better! :)

See? Super easy! Now wear with pride because not only can you sew you can (at least look like you know how to) cook! 

As with all of my projects, I have designed them for my family and love to share with you so you can have them for your families as well. All projects, patterns and directions are meant for your personal use and neither the patterns nor completed projects are to be used for monetary gain.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Christmas, kids, gifts and love

     *****I have a little confession to make, maybe everyone does it, I don't know. But when I write a post I just write what is in my head first, then title it. After titling I edit. While editing this one I thought to myself, "Well geez, the title really sums up all those words so quickly, why did I need to write that much?" But then I realize it's because I like to share good things with the world! And my family is a good thing! (No, I'm not Martha Stewart but it is the best choice of words I could find!)*****
     Now that the hustle and bustle is over for now I can come back to bloggy world with a clear conscience and not feel like I'm neglected my everyday duties.
     Hubby and I celebrated our 7th Wedding Anniversary on Saturday. It doesn't seem like that long at all. 
     Also I must say I've thoroughly enjoyed having Doodle Bug home for 2 weeks! He is getting so smart and I really got to see him work! We spent a lot of time in the kitchen baking which was amazing. At one point we were measuring flour for our sugar cookie recipe and I told him we needed 5 cups. After adding 3 cups I was stirring and he just up and says, "Now we need 2 more!" I was stunned! My 5 year old kindergartener had just done a math problem in his head! We also spent time with the letter magnets on the fridge. I would tell him to find me an A and he would, and so on and so forth. He knew so many more than he did just a month before. He is turning into quiet the little scholar!
     Christmas I can say was pretty amazing too! The kids were so happy and Hubby was thrilled with his gifts. The one gift I had made for my mom was an appliqued shirt that said loved, it was one of her late husband's shirts. I had a lot of emotion invested in that one gift! When I showed my sister up north I told her I was afraid it would make Mom cry, but when it came down to it I was the one in a blubbery mess! Later Hubby told me, "Your mom was doing fine until you cried!" Oops, my bad, but I couldn't help it! It was almost a year in the 'in-my-head" stage and finally having it in her hands was emotional.
     And now about MY gifts! Holy cow! Hubby got me a new sewing machine! Also my mom got me a Cricut! Both have been used for projects already. I made myself a reversible tote bag with four pockets and a new wallet with my sewing machine, as well as a few small things. With my Cricut I've started Doodle Bugs Valentine's for his class and made my mom's birthday card.
      Now stayed tuned because on Wednesday I'll have a new tutorial for you!