Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Being Lazy

I will be back in a little while. We have had a couple of health issues that have thrown our lives up side down. All is well now and we are going to be back on schedule! xo, L

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Holiday Hangover

We had a lovely holiday. We just hung around in our PJs and took things slowly with no pressures. We did that for the most part but then we hooked up with our friends, Karen, Neal and Emily for an impromptu dinner and a fun night of conversation and Wii. Just to be able to relax with my boys and the freedom of going wherever and whenever or nowhere for a few days is such a great feeling.

We played a lot of Monopoly and Pipeline. The boys built a lot of Lego and I discovered that reading the Lego manuals is not one of my talents. In the end though,the fun of piecing the Indiana Jones, Batman, and Star Wars sets were worth the effort.

I did some baking and the cookies came out surprisingly good. I'm not much of a baker because I'm not that good at following instructions. The cookies were yummy and the recipe came from here courtesy of Ree at The Pioneer Woman.

I'm also having fun with digital scrapbooking. You have to go here for a great giveaway. Rhonna's stuff is to die for. Though I'm not normally a frilly or ultra-feminine type when it comes to design, I do love her designs. Check it out! Good luck!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Here Birdie, Birdie Bulletin

I made this bulletin board for my book The Modern Crafter - Home Stuff. I'll give you some tips for making your own using the Here, Birdie, Birdie bird from my free tote design. I've reduced the image to fit the block. You can find the template here.

First, you need to buy a 16" x 20" framed canvas [back of the frame shown below] from any crafts store. Glue a 16" x 20" piece of cork to the front of this framed canvas and let it dry. 

This is where all of your leftover batting will come in handy. Wrap a 18" x 22" piece of batting around and staple to the back of the frame.  Trim excess batting from the corners.

Sew the quilt top as per the directions in the pattern and center on the front of the board. Pull fabric to the back and staple. For a nice finish, staple a 16" x 20" piece of cardstock to the back of the frame.
xo, L

Here Birdie, Birdie

In the spirit of my obsession with this little birdie who graces my tree, I'll have a couple of really easy projects for those of you who are just dying to make something handmade but are crunched for time. Come back tonight. Here's a sneak peek:

You'll be able to whip up this cute bulletin board in 1-2 hours. Come back for some fun. xo, L

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Naughty or Nice?

Are you naughty ...or nice?

Today's Craft Idea

Sorry about the photos. We are about to have a big storm and the lighting in this place is terrible this morning. Plus, Blogger will not load my photos. Anyway, I think that you get the idea. I have the templates posted here. I cut out two 15 1/2" squares from the red felt and fused the white felt letters to each side. Then I stitched a zigzag stitched around the letters. I sewed the pillow front and back to each other and stuffed the pillow with fiberfill. Then I hand-stitched the opening closed. I made 4 pompoms and sewed them to the corners after I stuffed the pillow. So cute!

I wanted to show you some more Philadelphia. We happened upon this vintage shop called Retrospect on South Street. I loved how they grouped the items together by color. 

I adore window boxes and row homes. There are lots of these lovely places in Philadelphia.

I loved this mural painted on the firestation wall.
I hope that you enjoyed this little tour of Philadelphia! xo, L

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Aren't We Clever?

Today's Crafty Idea

I volunteered to make some decorations for our school library and as I was thinking about it all, I was told that the fire inspector is making the school take down the drapes. Oh no! I had grand plans to decorate with fabric.

I've seen a lot of retail establishments decorate with yarn balls lately and when I was in Philly, there was a pretty wreath hanging on the Starbuck's door. So, I ran down to Michael's to get some inspiration and supplies. My friend, Joanne, and I made these simple but adorable wreaths. [Thanks for your help!] Aren't they cute? They're easy to make too.

First, you wrap some 2 1/2" styrofoam balls with yarn. You don't need a lot. Just wrap it so that you don't see the white parts. Make sure that you rotate the ball around and start winding the yarn in different directions along the way or else you will get huge lumpy ends.

Glue the ornaments and yarn balls onto this cardboard floral ring. We alternated the ornaments with the yarn balls. You will need 6 each of the yarn balls and the ornaments. Let dry and then hang the wreath with a ribbon. Tune in again for another quick idea.

Here's some more Philadelphia. As we were walking along South Street, we kept seeing ceramic mosaics on walls of buildings along the way. At the end of the displays, it was like discovering the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The Magic Garden is so wonderful.

Here's Jess outside the place. It is like a garden mosaic that takes up a little lot of land.

We didn't have enough time to enter the place but you can take a peek through the gates. There's a lovely path that takes you through the garden.

This is the view of the garden from across the street. You'd enter at the doorway shown at the bottom left of the photo.

See you soon. xo, L

Monday, December 15, 2008

Philly Loves Christmas

Ok, back to business. We've got Australian visitors again this year. Reno's cousin, Jessie, and her friend, Alicia, have been here for a few days. Yesterday, I took them to Philadelphia and we had a grand time. We walked and walked and walked! 

I love the old architecture here. The detail in the buildings is awesome. City Hall is gorgeous and I love the detail at the top of the building.

Right outside City Hall, there's a Christmas Market. I love the little booths and I especially love these. I reeeeeeeally wanted this one. Hey, Santa, are you listening?

The window display was oh so pretty. Sigh! There so many of them and it was tough to choose my favorite.

There were some wonderful ornaments. I managed to buy a few little ones for my tree. I'll share them in my next post. Look at these glass ones. 

These wooden ones were adorable. There were trains, toys and teddy bears.

At the next booth, we found these wonderful matroyska dolls. 

The colors are so vibrant and the detail on these were beautiful.

After the market, we walked over to the Liberty Bell. I waited outside and soaked up all of the beauty of the city while the girls were inside. 

Then we took a long walk along South Street. Tune in tomorrow for some interesting stops that we did along the way. On the way back [and it was a long walk], we stopped in at Loop. It is a beautiful and inspiring shop in Philly. Craig is super nice and I did manage to make a purchase. 

Now, don't blame me for helping you spend your money. [I did get Jessie to buy some patterns and fabric.] Right next door is the fabric sister store, Spool.

Wow, it is equally inspiring and so lovely. Check them out. Definitely worth the hike over there.

Here's Laura with a quilt that she was working on.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Santa Dropped By Clinton

What a magical night. The Town of Clinton held its annual holiday parade. The weather was a bit cool but fine because we were dressed in all of our snowsuits.  There were lots of excited little peeps waiting for the floats and special guests. The Mummers, above, were oh so sparkly. They came all the way from Philadelphia to spread holiday cheer.

Spiderman made his appearance right alongside the Polar Express. Batman swept by with his cool cape. The kids were in awe.

What sort of parade would it be without the gingerbread float?

The kids loved to meet all of the celebrities. Dr. Seuss was no exception.

Cinderella came first class in her beautiful coach.

Captain America drove into town in an awesome vintage fire truck.

Mickey was fine with the cold as was Minnie.

Who did they wait patiently for?

Mr. and Mrs. Claus, of course.