Sadly, this blog is a bit sleepier than I'd like these days. Pop over here if you'd like to know why.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Haiti Babi

Oh... it's been a long time!

I'm just here for a minute or two to tell you to head over to Haiti Babi's blog for 8 days of FREE baby shower downloads!

This is a project I've been working on with friends for several months... and now it's finally ready!

While you're there... take a moment to learn more about Haiti Babi, a non-profit serving mothers and families in Haiti.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Bridal Shower Flowers

I think my favorite element of the bridal shower was these little lemon flower arrangements. I cut the bottom of the lemon off so it would stand up. Then I poked holes in the lemon using a bamboo skewer. Next, it's just a matter of sticking flowers or a pinwheel in the holes!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Party Prizes / Triangular Coin Purse

I knew that I wanted to use some of my sewing supplies to make prizes for the bridal shower games. It worked out well that I had two zippers in the right size and just enough yellow striped fabric to make two triangular coin purses.

I used the instructions here and they were fairly simple to understand. It didn't take too long and I'd probably sew these again if the occasion presented itself.

Next, I wrapped them up and they were ready to be prizes at the shower. I think the recipients enjoyed them.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Party Favors

I've spent the past month and a half planning a bridal shower for a friend. Well, technically my role was assistant to the Maid of Honor... but she graciously allowed me to take over.

The shower was this past Friday. Now the bride has seen it all and I can share the details here, starting with the favors.

I was looking for something affordable and easy to make for a guest list of 22. I somehow came across this project for candy pouches and it seemed like just the thing! I was able to gather all the supplies easily and the only expense was the Jelly Belly jellybeans inside (in the shower colors).

Kraft paper is nonexistent here so I used Molly's hefty supply of lunch sacks to cut out squares.

To personalize the candy pouches I used two of Molly's letter stamps for the bride and groom's initials, and carved my own stamp out of an eraser for the heart.

Then it was just a matter of sewing three sides of the pouch, pushing jelly beans inside, and sewing it closed.

I think they turned out quite nicely. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Millet Muffins and Roasted Strawberries

This breakfast was four days in the making and kind of a disappointment. I had such high hopes too.


Day 1 I carefully measured, mixed, and labeled the dry ingredients for two different recipes. I packed them up and brought them to Molly's house for baking. It was only after I put the muffins in the oven that I realized I used the wrong dry ingredients. Flour and powdered sugar produce more of a rock than a muffin. Oops!

Day 2 was spent pulling the dry ingredients together again but due to time limitations only baking the non-muffin recipe.

Day 3 the muffins were baked and the strawberries roasted, but my appetite wasn't there.

Day 4 it was finally time. I warmed up the muffins, reheated the strawberries, added a little butter and... meh. Didn't really like it. The strawberries were ok but the muffin was weird. Too lemony and the millet was crunchy.

But in case you're so inclined, both recipes are in this post on Bliss, but were blogged by Scaling Back, and originally belong to Heidi Swanson. Complex.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Welcome to Camp

Way back at the end of February we had a little birthday party at Hump Day. It was a double-birthday-camping-in-stripes themed party... and it was fun.

We rigged a few sheets together to make a tent in Hannah's living room. It turned out that she already had nails in the wall at just the right places. We made a little campfire (from paper) and filled the inside of the tent with blankets, pillows, and sleeping bags.

For dinner we had baked potatoes and chili. Dessert was a s'more inspired bar that I'm still thinking about. I think it will be the first thing I make when I get my hands on some more veggie friendly marshmallows.

Happy Birthday to Sarah and Molly!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Another Market Bag

Do you ever zone out while sewing? I do. I planned to add a few pockets to this bag. I even prepared and sewed some. After that I guess I entered a trance because I didn't realize that I didn't actually include the pockets until I was nearly finished. There was no going back. Oh well.

So the market bag with lots of handy pockets I planned to make for a friend's birthday became just a plain old market bag.

At the very least I did remember to add a velcro closure. I hope that counts for something! The tutorial for this project is from Film in the Fridge but the exact link doesn't seem to be currently working.

Happy Birthday, Shera!

(And thanks to Molly for leaving her camera at home during the day. I was able to get a few last minute photos!)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Aprons for Thailand

Today I'm setting off for Thailand! I will be doing a few weeks of volunteering with the Thai Child Development Foundation (and a few weeks of travel as well). Last month I was reading over the foundation's Wish List and noticed they were asking for aprons. Having too much fabric and ample time on my hands, I decided to make some!

It was a slow process at times. I really hate turning tubes of heavy weight fabric. But it was all worth it. Now I have 5 cute aprons to donate to an amazing cause.

I used this pattern for a child's apron from Sew Liberated. I used the 6-8 size pattern pieces but added an inch across and an inch in length. I don't know exactly how big the children will be but I wanted the aprons to be able to fit older kids, if necessary.

The reverse side.

It always feels great when you can use your skills or something you love doing to help other people.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Utensil Roll

I was trying to think of something useful to make for Molly's birthday. I also wanted it to be small and easy to pack. Knowing that Molly is often on the go, a utensil roll seemed to be a good choice.

I went back and looked at pictures of the rolls I made for Jenny and Kevin. This time I decided to make it a bit smaller and less bulky. The light blue fabric is actually a dishtowel Taune sent me. I added a stripe of forks, spoons, and knives because... well, it's the perfect print for a project like this!

Molly just needs to add some cutlery and she's covered for picnics, cookouts, or lunches at work. She could even stock it with several of these fun sporks and provide utensils for the whole party!

Friday, March 2, 2012

A Scarf for Sarah

I saw this pin on Pinterest weeks ago and immediately thought of Sarah. I kept the idea in the back of my mind until just a few days before her birthday.

I roughly followed these instructions but mostly did my own thing because either the steps weren't very clear or I thought of an easier way.

In all, it was a pretty quick project and very satisfying. I wrapped it up in a box and gave her the advice to "Double it!"

I think it kind of looks perfect on her!

Friday, February 17, 2012

What's for Dinner? Vday Edition

A few days ago I hosted a belated Valentine's Day party for Hump Day. Something about not working right now has my mind racing for party ideas...all the time. So many ideas meant that there were a lot of themes going on. But that's ok. Right?

Beverage: Love Potion #9 aka strawberry soda

Appetizer: Asparagus and White Bean Pesto Tart

Salad: Spinach, red onions, cherry tomatoes, walnuts

Soup: Broccoli Seed Soup

Dessert: Vanilla cupcakes with frosting

All of the foods (except drinks and dessert) are considered "heart-healthy" and I typed up little cards to explain their health benefits. It's always good to know what your food does for you!

The cupcakes we had for dessert were actually offered as a bake sale. I put the money raised towards a donation to V-Day. V-Day is a global movement to end violence against women and girls worldwide.

Hopefully, the cupcakes were judged worthy of money. I worked extra hard to put a little surprise inside!

Yep, that's a cute little heart in there. It took a lot of extra time, but it was pretty fun to put together and very exciting to slice each cupcake.

The entertainment of the evening was making mailboxes and exchanging valentines. I didn't get a photo of all of them but everyone did a great job. There were doilies, cookies, and even a mix cd. I made scratch off valentines that corresponded to numbered boxes. Inside the boxes were draw string bags in different colors and patterns. (That's a mix between being a keener and having a lot of fabric to use up and extra time on my hands.)

It worked out well that each bag suited its recipient.

Not pictured: Sarah and Box #3

Unfortunately, Sarah couldn't make it so I pulled together a little "V-Day in a box" and dropped it on her doorstep.

I hope everyone had a lovely Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Wild Rice Salad with Miso Dressing

This is my new favorite salad and I need to sing its praises!

Last week Molly and I teamed up to tackle this recipe. She provided most of the ingredients and the kitchen, I brought over some wild rice and did the cooking.

It was so good.

We both liked it so much that we made plans to make it again this week. A double batch.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Homemade Do-si-dos

I made some awesome cookies.

Over the weekend I saw this recipe on Pinterest and immediately put making them on my to-do list for the next day.

When I was halfway through the (very simple) process I realized that they were essentially do-si-dos! Actually, these are even better because they are much softer than Girl Scouts' version. I like my cookies soft.

These cookies passed the taste test with Mike, Molly, and me... so you know they're good.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Tempeh Kabobs

A few months ago I was really excited to see nearly an entire refrigerator case dedicated to vegetarian "meat" at the supermarket. I rarely eat fake meat other than veggie dogs while camping. It's often kind of gross and full of sodium. But this time in addition to the "meat" there were several types of tempeh on offer.

Have you had tempeh? It's an Indonesian staple made from whole soybeans. It has more protein than tofu and a much firmer texture.

When I saw the tempeh, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it. Kabobs! A cookout at the park was the perfect chance to get them on the grill. (And Hallelujah Lulu's still had it in stock. Things tend to appear and then vanish here).

photo by Molly

For the kabobs I used tempeh, pineapple, yellow and green pepper, onion, and marrow (like zucchini). I marinated them in teriyaki sauce (from a bottle mixed with more garlic, honey, salt, and lemon pepper) for a few hours before heading to the park.

photo by Molly

Mike and I had the leftovers over rice the next evening. Still good, but much better straight off the grill.

Friday, February 3, 2012

New Songs for the New Year: Last Year

I also posted our New Songs for the New Year 2011 mix online.

Photo from the Library of Congress

You can listen to it here.

I selected songs 1-6, Molly 7-12.

We hope you like it!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

New Songs for the New Year

A few months ago I was forced to admit that I don't really listen to much music these days. I've been won over by podcasts and I'm kind of obsessed. I even have specific podcasts I listen to when doing certain activities.

Driving to work = Stuff You Should Know, Stuff You Missed in History Class
Cooking = This American Life
Dishes = NPR Pop Culture
Sewing = To The Best of Our Knowledge

It's not all set in stone but I would never waste TAL on doing the dishes. The water is much too noisy to hear my Ira.

So when it came time to assemble the annual mix cd that Molly and I make, I had a little digging to do. Luckily, it wasn't too hard to pick out 6 amazing tracks.

Every year Molly and I make a mix of new songs for the new year. It started four years ago with just me choosing the tracks. Last year we settled into a new routine where we each choose 6 songs and put them together to make a 12 track mix.

What first began as "New Songs for the New Year" has now become "New Songs for the New New New New Year." To make it a bit easier, I'll just call it "New Songs for the New Year 2012."

Photo from the Library of Congress

This year we've decided to share our mix so you can listen along with us. I selected songs 1-6, Molly 7-12. You can listen online here.

We hope you enjoy it!

(And even though I just admitted my podcast addiction, anyone have any new recommendations?)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sleeping Masks

I had been thinking about making sleep masks for about three years now. Last week the day finally came.

It was really just a matter of tracing a sleep mask I already had (from a long haul flight). I looked over a tutorial (that I can't seem to find) to make sure there weren't any little tricks I was missing. But nope, it was really that easy. The masks are reversible and I made sure to use especially soft material.

I wrapped the masks up and gave them to Hannah for her birthday. Everyone likes a good night's sleep.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Pink and Purple

Last night we had a little pre-birthday party for a friend. The theme was shades of purple and pink.

I had been dying to make these floral party hats for a few months and this seemed like the perfect occasion. I couldn't find any thin wire (or wire at all) so I had to settle for plant ties. Not ideal but it got the job done.

I also made a few banners by sewing strips of paper together. I also made a banner with paint chips and I especially liked the way it turned out.

Molly cooked up a few delicious salads and I especially liked this one.

Happy Birthday, Hannah!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Three Pouches

When I was digging around for craft supplies to make Christmas gifts, I pulled out what I thought to be the last of my zipper stash. I quickly sewed up three pouches for three friends. I didn't mean for them to be so square, but oh well.

I think I spotted Molly's in her bag the other day. So that's a good sign. I've discovered a few more zippers since then... so I guess I'll be making a few more!

I used this tutorial again.