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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Jane Eyre Shrugs from Old Shirts

A few weekends ago my friend Laura came to stay with us for the weekend.  We didn't have many plans (our husbands were out cutting firewood), so we decided to do some crafts.

A long time ago I had pinned a tutorial on how to make Jane Eyre Shrugs from T-Shirts.  The tutorial can be found here. I wasn't sure how they would turn out so we gave it a go.  I was pretty happy with the result and it took hardly any time at all. 

Looking back at the tutorial it looks like if you use a shirt that is a little more baggy it will have more of the pretty draped effect.

I like the ways ours turned out though, and they were both just shirts that were in my repurpose bin!

Here is Laura modeling her new shrug- isn't she cute!!

The sweater before its "updo" into a shrug.

Here is my tee before.

And after. (sorry about the bad photo!)

The other thought I had was that instead of having to deal with the ribbon tie you could sew the ribbon off and then add a cute brooch or button!

There are a bunch of other variations of this shirt here.

Thanks for stopping by!
I will be sharing with some of these parties!

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A Reminder and Quick Tuesday Ten- My Works in Progress

Hi Readers,
I hope you are having a great Tuesday.

I just wanted to put out a reminder that GFC is going away on March 1st.  I don't know exactly how this will effect everything, but I know I follow a lot of blogs that are not blogger blogs through GFC so I have been trying to update the ways that I follow them.

Here are some alternate options to follow my blog:

Linky Followers on sidebar
Networked Blogs on sidebar

Now on the the Tuesday Ten- My Works in Progress
Sometimes I feel like I have project ADD- I jump around from one project to another, sometimes even working on 4-5 projects in one day. I think it drives my husband crazy! But anyway, these are some of my current WIP.

1. Quilt for my nephews birthday. I am using this tutorial for part of it, and some applique for another part of it. It's looking pretty awesome so far!

2. Finishing up a beach bag and tutorial for my sister (I am done with the cute embroidery that will go on it!).

3. Jute wrapped letter for my entryway vignette.

4. Remember this old window I made into a picture frame. Well I am working on another window project- It was nice enough this weekend that I could get it out and get it sanded.

5. This isn't craft related, but I am training for a 10k and working on getting back in shape.... possibly a Half Marathon this spring too, maybe :).

6. Building a garden fence- this one needs to get done soon so that the deer don't eat our plants!
Here is our inspiration for that, kind of.

7. Baby presents for my sister- some of these she knows about- a nursing cover and birth announcement, but some she doesn't know about yet, so I will wait to share those after she gets them :).

8. My family quilt- a quilt made from fabric from my Grandmothers, my mother, my sisters and me. I can't wait to get this one done!

9. Refinishing and reupholstering our dining room chairs. I am partway through the process of stripping everything off the chairs, I need to apply some stain and polyurethane and add the padding and fabric.

10. Finish the Mother's Day gift for my Mom- not saying what that one is either :).

I guess I have my plate pretty full!

Thanks for stopping by and have a good day!

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Monday, February 27, 2012

Forest Friends Cartoon Cut Outs

This past few weeks I have been trying to spruce my office up at work. I work at a WIC (Women, Infants and Children) office. As you can imagine the budget for artwork isn't huge! So I had to get creative and make some pretty decorations for my room. I just love these little forest creatures!

For a tutorial on how to make these Cut Outs from clip art click here. I used construction paper and scrapbooking paper on all of them. I used contact paper to cover them before I hung them on the wall.

I think this would work as a fun way to decorate a kids room temporarily!

 I think the moose may be my favorite!

Sorry about the camera phone pic- I forgot my camera that day!
I will be sharing with some of these parties!
Thanks for stopping by!

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Friday, February 24, 2012

Gluten Free Breadsticks- New Food Friday

Last week I posted about my dietary changes due to a suspected food allergy. I am avoiding dairy, soy and gluten. This recipe is for gluten free breadsticks. They are also dairy and soy free, but if you don't have to avoid dairy adding cheese to these breadsticks would be amazing.

This recipe turned out pretty good- not as good as regular breadsticks, but for a gluten free product it was amazing.

Gluten Free Breadsticks
Gluten Free Pizza Crust Mix
1 medium Onion
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 tsp minced Garlic
Garlic Powder
Parmesan Cheese (optional, I didn't use this)

Marinara Sauce
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
2  Tbsp garlic powder
2 tsp basil
2 tsp oregeno
2 Tbsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Mix Pizza Crust according to package directions.

While you are letting your pizza crust rise heat olive oil in medium skillet.

Saute onions until they are clear.

Once Pizza Crust has risen add sauted onions and minced garlic to crust.

Press onto greased baking sheet. This is a little bit difficult because the dough will be more sticky than a regular pizza dough. Mine didn't turn out the prettiest but it worked.

Sprinkle with garlic powder, basil, oregeno and parmesan (optional).

Bake according to directions on Pizza Crust package.

While breadsticks are baking combine all ingredients for marinara sauce on the stove. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 5-10 minutes.
Cut breadsticks into pieces and enjoy!

I will be linking up with some of These Parties!


Thanks for stopping by!
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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Crackle Paint Eat Signs

Kitchen decor has always been one of my favorite things to do- maybe because I love food so much, maybe because I decorate with fruits and vegetables- who knows. Anyway, the kitchen was one of the first rooms in the house we had decorated. But there was one little spot that needed a little something so I made these cute little wall hangings.

I found a link on Pinterest for how to make crackle paint out of Elmer's glue. I decided to give it a whirl and it worked like a dream. I was a little nervous when I went to bed that night because it didn't look that great, but when I woke in the morning the paint had dried and the crackles were perfect!

I bought the letters from Hobby Lobby and the plaques from Wal-Mart.  So here is how I made these cute little signs.

Paint the letters using this tutorial. Don't judge the crackle until it dries completely!

(This is what it looks like just starting to dry)

Cut scrapbook paper out to fit over the plaque.

Paint around the outside of the plaque where the paper won't cover.

Put ModPodge in thin layer all over plaque, place paper on top and ModPodge into place.

Once the ModPodge has dried glue the letters in place. Hang and enjoy!!

I will be linking up with some of These Parties!

Thanks for stopping by!
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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Tuesday 10- How to Prepare for Your Garden Right Now!

Last summer our garden was kind of a bummer. We moved in May to our new house and so we were a little late getting the garden established. Also when you move in to a new house there is soo much to do and gardening usually isn't first priority.

This year I am wanting to have our garden be the best it ever has. We have a lot more space at the new house to garden in and I am getting itchy for it to be spring and get started growing some yummy food.

We did quite a bit of prep work last fall (or I should say my husband did). He tilled up the garden area, did landscaping for the flower gardens and planted bulbs. Now I am wanting to work on getting the vegetable garden ready.

Here are some ideas for things to do right now to make this year your best garden ever!

1. Composting- This can be done year round and is helpful for making your soil rich in nutrients. It also reduces the amount of waste that is put into landfills each year. I have done some composting in the past, but I am making a commitment to compost all of my organic waste. Here is a link to the EPA's Basics about Composting.

2. Planting Seeds Inside- Planting seeds inside can give you a head start on the growing season and save some money. This does require sunny areas inside and a place to keep your seedlings though. See this website for info on when to plant inside.

3. Buying or building birdhouses- Bird houses around the garden are a great thing- the birds eat pesky bugs and are also really pretty to look at. I want to build some rustic birdhouses to place on our garden fence. Cozy Little House blog has some pretty pictures for inspiration from her neighbor's garden.

4. Hardscaping- Now is the time to get your hardscaping done! Get it done before the planting season starts. Here are some ideas for hardscaping to make your garden really shine-

  • Raised Garden Beds- Can help with drainage and save time from not having to till as much. Here is a link for a how-to. 
  • Container Gardens- Plants such as tomatoes, strawberries and spinach do well growing in containers and can be grown even if you don't have a lot of space for a garden. These can also add interest to your landscaping. Here is an amazing container gardening inspiration post at A Life's Design.

5. Make a Planting Schedule- Planting at the right time is crucial in having a good harvest. We bought a book this year (on clearance!) that gives you a week by week planting schedule and garden preparation schedule based on your last freeze date.  For those of you who aren't sure when to plant this website you can enter your zip code and it will give you a week by week of when to plant different vegetables. It also tells you when to start seedlings indoors if you are going that route. It is free to get the planting schedule but there is the option to order seeds from them too.

6. Collecting Recipes- Start collecting recipes for the foods you are going to grow. I have a few basic recipes that I use for canning and for freezing but I am always looking for more. I will be posting some of my favorite canning recipes this spring. Good things to keep in mind while looking for recipes is the method of preparation you are going to use, what crops you are going to grow and the foods your family eats the most. Here is some really good basics from the USDA's Guide for Food Preservation.

7. Soil Testing- Soil testing is a good way to make sure that your soil is the right pH to grow plants effectively. Most of the time your local or county extension agency can perform a pH test on your soil for a small fee. If the pH is off they also give suggestions on how to correct it. Getting your pH right can be the difference between a great crop and a lousy year in your garden.

8. Plant Cool Weather Plants- It may seem hard to believe but some cool weather plants such as green onions and peas can be planted as early as the first week of March depending on your location. Getting these plants in right on time can make sure they have plenty of time to produce before it gets too hot. See above planting schedule link to find the right date in your area.

9. Organic Pesticides- Organic pesticides are a great way to get the maximum production out of your plants without having to deal with harmful chemical pesticides. Wake Up World has a list of organic pesticide methods. One of the recipes I found intriguing was collecting onion peels and then letting the steep in water to make an organic pesticide spray. Looks like I am collecting all of my onion scraps from now on!

10. Build a Cold box- Cold boxes are basically mini-greenhouses that you can build to make your planting season a little bit longer. Here is a great link to a DIY Cold Box. I think this is a great idea if you don't have the sunny space in your house for seedlings but you want to start them earlier than just planting outside. I don't know if I will try it this year, but definitely next year!

I hope that some of these tips will be helpful for you. I plan to do pretty frequent updates of my garden progress once we get started planting!

I will be linking up with some of These Parties!
Thanks for stopping by!
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