Saturday, December 20, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

Mama got a brand new hair-do!

So that first picture is definitely not flattering, but my husband took it and wasn't willing to take more than one. I'll take what I get I guess. It doesn't help that he doesn't tell me when he's taking the actual picture. Hence the fact that 95% of our pictures do NOT have me in them because I'm the photographer.
I thought with my new weight loss I would get a new sassy haircut as well. When my face is fuller I don't like my hair too short because it just accentuates it even more. I was feeling adventurous and went for a bit shorter and what I call 'choppy bangs'. They are more uneven and not straight across my forehead and not very heavy either. I am not one to lament over haircuts and don't often notice when other people get their hair cut, so I made up my mind and ran with it.
I really like how it turned out and think that I can pull off bangs (much to my surprise). At pre-school, Maddie's teacher mentioned that I had gotten my hair done and I told her yes, and that I got bangs! I also mentioned that I hadn't had bangs since maybe high school. She laughed and said that it made me look so much younger, I could pass for a high-schooler. I wouldn't go that far, but I do think I look a lot younger.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Even big girls need a little flair for their hair

Please bear with me on the pictures. I know they are terrible but I promise to re-do some of them once we actually have some good sunlight. It has been raining since late last night and I can't get any good natural light for my photos. Plus, my camera is terrible and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I will be getting a new one for Christmas!!!!
Anyway, I made quite a few little sets of bobby pins for some of the ladies in my life. Most likely they will mainly go to my best friend as she is an elementary school teacher and loves to wear funky things in her hair. While they would look okay in my girl's hair, I think they are a bit more mature for them and they primarily like all things pink! I might stick one set in my step-sister-in-law's stocking too since she has gorgeous curly red hair and they would look awesome on her. She's young and tons of fun so she could pull them off!

I already had all of the supplies to make these in my stash so I didn't spend a penny! Woo Hoo!
Okay, back to more crafting!


Most of you reading this blog know me personally but I'm sure there are a few of you who don't. For those of you who don't know me, welcome, thank you for visiting my blog and reading about all of my crazy crafting adventures!

Since many of you know me, you know that I have struggled with my weight pretty much all of my life. I constantly go up and down but mainly stay on the up part much longer than the down. =( I even went for an interview in Los Angeles with my best friend to be contestants on the show The Biggest Loser!! (NO JOKE!!) September 15Th was a huge turning point in my life when my best friend and I started on a journey of losing weight together and keeping this weight off forever! Yesterday I hit a major milestone in my weight loss when my scale registered that I had lost 50 pounds! Yes, I have lost 50 pounds in 3 months (almost exactly to the day! just one day early!) Woo Hoo! I feel like the hugest load has been lifted off my back (well, actually more from my tummy, hips, and thighs!) and I am so proud that I did it the right way through diet and exercise. My husband and I often joke that I have lost a whole Maddie as she weighs almost 40 pounds. But now I'm close to losing a Maddie and a Peyton! LOL.

In celebration of our huge accomplishments, my best friend (she's lost about 40 pounds!) and I spent almost all day together shopping, going to this awesome up and coming fashion designer show here in San Diego, talking, and treating ourselves to an amazing lunch at the Cheesecake Factory! I pretty much took all day off from crafting (except for about an hour when I got home), being a mommy, and feeling all of the Holiday stress I have been feeling for this past month! I had the best time yesterday and realize just how much time off away from the kids is vital to my mental well being. Since having the girls I've never focused much on 'mommy time' or even taking much care of myself (hence the many many pounds I packed on after Peyton's birth). Finally realizing that when I take care of my self both mentally as well as physically, I am a much better mommy to my girls and wife to my husband. I'm much happier, I can do more things as I don't have as much weight holding me back, and all of the stress of the Holidays doesn't make me mean and grouchy like in the past, it just feels like a challenge that I am ready to conquer.

Since this Thrifty 50 challenge started, I have been in 3 craft shows (one of which I actually organize), had a few migraines, doctored my whole family and myself who all got the flu and Peyton now with a cold, crafted, tried to grow my mommy business, and am now preparing for 2 Christmas celebrations at my house (Christmas this Saturday with my husband's dad and brother, and Christmas Eve with my whole family). So, stress and tension have been very high this year (hence the migraines!) To top it all off, I can add losing 50 pounds to the list of accomplishments this Christmas season!

Of all the gifts I could give to my family at Christmas, I think that the gift of my health and continuing weight loss will be the best gift I can give to them. Setting the example for my girls of living a healthy lifestyle in both diet and exercise will be a lifelong gift I can give to them. I know that due to this weight loss I have added many more years to my life and hopefully avoided many diseases that come with obesity. I am thankful that I have never suffered from any ill effects or conditions from being overweight and am making it my goal to keep it this way.

If I have inspired just one person to lose weight this Holiday season or upcoming year than I will feel that it has been worthwhile to share my story with you all. Losing weight and maintaining that weight loss is not easy, and will be a battle I shall fight the rest of my life. Choosing to live healthy is worth all of the struggle and pain that I have gone through and will continue to go through. Hopefully my girls are too young to remember 'fat' mommy and will only have memories of me as I am now and will be soon in the future......healthy and happy!

Thank you to all of you who have supported me through my many weight loss endeavors. You all know who you are and that I couldn't have done it without you. I love you all!!! Thanks too to my special weight loss buddy! May we always keep each other accountable and stay fit and healthy for life!

And another one.....

This was the first dishwasher magnet that I started making for my husband but changed my mind on the paper choice. I really love it, I just didn't think it was fitting for him. So, now I've got an extra one and don't know who to give it to. I thought that it would go pretty well in my brother and sister-in-law's house, but I know that my sister-in-law is so much more organized than me an would never have the same problem we do. So, hmmmm...what to do. Maybe I'll figure it out before Christmas or offer it up to someone who really needs one!!

Are they clean or dirty???

The age old question that your husband always asks you.....Are these dishes clean or are they dirty? Well, now my husband won't have any excuse why he doesn't unload the dishwasher full of clean dishes or put his dirty dishes into the dishwasher. We constantly go round and round about why he feels the need to place his dirty dishes on the counter right next to the sink instead of just rinsing them off and putting them in the dishwasher. Ahhhh! It drives me crazy! I could spend all day talking about these small little annoyances, but I'll spare you the drama.
Since we both agreed this year to only spend $20 on each other and not buy gift cards (I'm forcing him to be creative this year) I decided that I would make him this nifty little magnet for our dishwasher. Unfortunately he spied it on the table while the mod podge was drying, so it's not going to be a surprise at Christmas, but oh well. It is now completely finished with super strong magnets on the back (hopefully the girls won't take it off like they do with all of the magnets on the fridge) and some cute Ric rac trim. While I'm sure it won't be on the top 5 of his favorite Christmas gifts this year, it will definitely be on my list!
Oh, don't forget that this is the present that will be going in the Victoria's Secret bag as mentioned here!

For the other little chef in our family....

This chef's hat has been made for a few days now and I was waiting to post it with the completed apron, but alas the apron is still not finished. I am having problems with my sewing machine as of late (it is my grandmother's sewing machine and is a really old Kenmore from crazy! There's more to that story and I'll have to tell you all later) So, I will post Jake's hat now as it is done and will be embroidered with his name on the front. I can't wait to see him open it up on Christmas Eve (that's when we do presents with my family) and explain to him what it is. My girls have seen both of the chef's hats laying around the house but have no clue what they are, so I'm sure he won't either!

I do have one confession to make though....I tried Jake's hat on Peyton just to see how it looked and if it would fit looks adorable!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

If all the Snowflakes were Candy Canes and Milkshakes...

A couple of years ago I made these ornaments as gift toppers for both my husband's and my family. This would be before the girls were here and I had TONS of time on my hands! My sister-in-law absolutely loved them and said that she would love to have a tree full of just these ornaments. So, I decided that each year for Christmas I would give her at least 2 of these ornaments until they have enough to fill a Christmas tree. I might give her a couple for her birthday or other holidays too, but we'll see. I hope she still likes them!
A side note about the title of this post.
My daughter learned this adorable song in pre-school this summer and we often sing it in the car to keep Peyton from screaming (don't ask!). Here is the song......
If all the raindrops were lemon drops and gumdrops,
Oh what a rain that would be.
Standing outside with my mouth open wide,
Ahh, ahh, ah, ahh, ahh, ah, ah, ah, ah, ahhh.
(You have to tilt your head up to the sky with your mouth open to sing that part)
If all the raindrops were lemon drops and gumdrops,
Oh what a rain that would be.
If all the snowflakes were candy bars and milkshakes,
Oh what a snow that would be.
Standing outside with my mouth open wide.
Ahh, ahh, ah ahh, ahh, ah ah ahh, ahh ahhh ah.
(again, you need to tilt your head up w/ your mouth open wide)
If all the snowflakes were candy bars and milkshakes,
Oh what a snow that would be.
If all of the suns beams were bubble gum and ice cream
Oh what a sun that would be.
Standing outside with my mouth open wide
Ahh, ahh ah, ahh, ahh, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah.
If all of the suns beams were bubble gum and ice cream
Oh what a sun that would be.
You can find the little tune that goes with it and the lyrics here. We use version #2. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

These gift tags are for my mother as an early Christmas present and I will be giving them to her tonight at Madison's Christmas performance at pre-school. Every year my mom makes tons of cookies, fudge, peanut brittle, and special breads to give to friends and family. Luckily I have taken after my mother with a love of baking too. I will admit that I can't cook the best, but I sure can bake! :D This year my mom is making pumpkin bread in mini loaves (think half the size of a regular loaf pan) for all of her co-workers (she works at a school district office so there are lots!). She actually baked down her pumpkin from Halloween and pureed it to get the pumpkin for her bread. (How thrifty is that? See where I get it from!) I have always wanted to make her up special gift tags to use but do not have any graphic design ability. So, the next best thing was googling for almost an hour to find the perfect tags for her. Thinking back now, I could have scrapped all of the tags in an hour! Oh well. I found the perfect tags here. My family is Christian and my mom is a glowing example of how a Christian should live their life. So I thought that these would be a great way for her to share the real 'reason for the season' with her co-workers. I printed them out on card stock that I already have and used my nifty paper cutter to cut them up. So, they were totally free! I sure hope she can use them and they aren't too religious for a school district!

This set is for my oldest daughter Madison. She is taking dance classes and absolutely loves it. We constantly have fights over what she wants to wear to class and this week was no exception. I sometimes have a hard time getting her to tell me what is really bothering her, but I finally got it out of her this week. After breaking into tears and refusing to wear pants even though it was freezing outside (well, Southern California cold...heehee) she finally blurted out..."I want to wear something pretty. All of the other girls get to wear pretty things to dance class." Oh, my heart just melted right then and there. I don't make her go to dance class in ugly things, I just feel the need to be practical with what we wear. I mean, c'mon she is only 3 1/2, we don't need to have professional dance outfits! Soooo.....since my mommy job is selling tutus and girlie things, I just had to make her a new tutu for dance class to wear when the next session starts after Christmas. The hat I just threw in hoping she would wear it. I sell all these adorable beanies and flower clips but can't even get my own daughter to wear them half the time. Ugghhhhh.
My only advice to mommies with little girls is to start early (yeah, think right outta the hospital) with the bows, hair clips, and hats. If you don't, they will never ever wear them!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My ingenious idea!

Hee hee hee....{Insert evil grin here}.

I just have to laugh about this. So, I went to the mall with my lovely SIL today and we both brought along the kidlets (2 each=4 total). We traded off watching them in 'Germ City' (AKA the play land) so the other could do a little shopping. I didn't know how much harder it is watching 4 kids as opposed to 2. Yikes, maybe we won't have baby #3! J/K. Anyway, I had a coupon from Victoria's Secret for $10 off any purchase. Being the total cheap-o that I am, I went in and found something for exactly $10. I originally went in wanting body wash but it was only $8.50 and I didn't want to spend any money there nor did I want to lose that extra $1.50 that they were giving me. So, I decided to get the body butter instead, which smells heavenly if I do say so myself. Of course the associate at the counter tried to hit me up for the 3 for $24 deal which I totally would have done in the past. Now with a family budget and my husband's hawk eyes on our finances, that's not going to be happening anytime soon. I also use their free panties coupon too and only get the free panties and nothing else. Yeah, the ladies at our VS love me!

So, on to my ingenious plan.......

I was emptying the car just now and throwing away the bags I didn't need and looked at my Victoria's Secret bag and thought, "Wow, how cute is that bag. It looks like it could be used for a present." Well, the logo on the front wouldn't really look that great, but hmmmmm........{insert a picture of my cheap-o crafty mind's wheels spinning!} AHHH HA! I've got it. I am going to put my husband's present in it for Christmas! I am making him a magnet for our dishwasher that tells him if our dishes are clean or dirty. I'm almost finished so check back for pics in a day or so. Yes, he has put dirty dishes away before and put dirty dishes in with the clean ones too. So, he really needs it and I had to make him something. He's actually mentioned it a couple of times that it would really help him out, so it will be a perfect gift for him. Won't he be thrilled on Christmas day to see a bag labeled for him and Victoria's Secret printed on the side! He will be shocked and probably embarrassed because of course it will be in front of either my family or his family when he opens it. He will be even more shocked when it's not sexy lingerie and it's a dishwasher magnet! LOL!

As a side husband is known for wrapping up things I already own and gifting them to me. One Christmas it was a bag of tea light candles that I had purchased the week before. I'm sure there are more but they've slipped my mind at the moment. So, don't send me hate mail over this or think I'm mean and nasty. I love my husband very much but sometimes a girls gotta have a little fun! I've gotta be sure to post some pictures of his face too when he sees that present at Christmas. Hopefully my SIL can remind me!

Lastly, the picture is proof that I only bought (well it was actually free) the body butter lotion and not any sexy lingerie!

A is for Apple

This chef's hat and adorable apron are for my 2 year old niece Abby. Her mommy put an apron on her Christmas list because she knew I had a cute pattern for them. I just had to make her a matching chef's hat to make the outfit complete. I can just picture how adorable she will look cooking with her mommy in the kitchen!

Oh, as a side note.....if you noticed 2 spots on the band of the chef's hat, you weren't seeing things. Yes, that would be my blood. A battle wound from so much sewing and crafting! I pricked my finger, thought it was dry, and kept on sewing. Later on I noticed what I'd done. Oh well. I'm going to use my bleach stick and then wash it before I give it to her.
Lastly, I'm going to have her name embroidered on the band. I have a family friend who can do it for me for free. Free is always good. So, my cost on this present was about $3 total since I had the Apples and Pears fabric already as well as the green and white polka dot fabric. I did have to buy a little white twill fabric for the chef's hat. Of course, I used my coupon at JoAnn's for 50% off and bought some extra fabric to make my nephew's chef's hat and apron. The pom pom trim was $2.99 a yard and I got 2 yards (for other projects I'm planning) but the lady at JoAnn's only charged me for 1 yard. Woohoo! I think she was totally being nice since I waited 45 minutes in line for JUST the pom pom trim. I know, total waste of time and I'm crazy. But, I HAD to get this project finished and out of the way. Of course, I used my 50% off coupon on that to. I ended up getting 2 yards of pom pom trim for $1.49! That is a steal.

It's picture time! Finally....

I made these for my 2 little princesses who love to dress up and dance around. They were fun to make and I know will be a big hit.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmas came early...

I have been waiting impatiently for almost a week now to open my mailbox and find a little brown box inside. Well, today was the day. After rushing home with my treasure, I hastily tore the box open. Inside I found the book I had been pining for at the bookstore. I have to admit, I was a bit shocked by the cheesiness and the bright yellow color of the cover. But as the old saying goes......"You can't judge a book by it's cover." I read somewhere that this is supposed to be a great reference for all things sewing and it received great reviews at, so let's hope I'm right.

Oh, and I've gotta tell you that I didn't even spend one penny on it! I got free shipping since I bought something else totalling $25. Also, I have had these Amazon gift certificate codes in my e-mail box for months just wondering what I should use them on. (I was chosen to participate in an online forum only for women about HP products. Cool, huh? So, about once a quarter I get a $15 Amazon gift card and they have been piling up.) Anyway, the next book I'm drooling over is In Stitches by Amy Butler (a fabulous fabric and pattern designer) I hope I get that one for Christmas though. Hint, Hint!

So, now that I've finally got the book in my possession, I've just gotta find the time to read it!

The Circle of Life

Today I came to pick Maddie up from pre-school only to find that her teacher was not there. She had been there this morning when I dropped Maddie off though. We've only been going there to pre-school about 2 1/2 months, but Miss. D. has never not been there. Her teachers' aid was leading the class which surprised me. So, I asked one of the other teachers if she was okay only to find out that her father had passed away earlier that morning.

My heart just breaks for Miss D. and her family right now. I can't even begin to imagine how hard it would be to lose your father. I don't know details or any other information, I can only hope that he is now up in Heaven with his Father.

Miss D. is honestly the most genuinely happy person that I know. She enjoys her job and truly loves and cares for those little 3 year olds like no one else can. She is wonderful at what she does and we fell in love with her from the first day Maddie stepped foot in her class. She asks me every day how I am doing and waits intently for my reply. Today I had had a hard morning getting Maddie up and dressed (she did not want to wear the striped shirt! although she had a choice of 2 outfits). She whined all the way there that she didn't want to go, blah, blah, blah. I just tuned it out today. So, of course when Miss D. asked how I was doing I unloaded on her a bit about how much of a struggle I'm having with Maddie. In true Miss. D style she had a positive thing to say and told me what a good job I was doing. Some days I feel like she is my personal cheerleader, cheering me on to be the best mommy I can be. Not once did I detect anything was wrong with her nor did she unload any of her problems on me or the kids (Maddie had no clue why Miss. D went home early today). Now I'm feeling a bit guilty about not asking her how her day was going and not being able to give her a positive word when she could really use it.

So, I'm a bit down today thinking of the loved ones in my family that have already passed and the few others who are to follow. Makes me want to squeeze my girls a little harder today and shower them with extra kisses. Our lives are too short not to be happy and content with what God has given us. Not typically being an overly happy person myself, I think I will make it my goal throughout the Holidays and the coming year to work on that part of my life. I have so much to be thankful for and need to show it more to those around me.

If only there were more Miss. D's in the world.
We Love you Miss. D.!!!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Gobble, Gobble, Splat!

Sorry for the yucky title, but I thought it was quite fitting for out weekend. I'll give you a little run down on how it went but I'll spare you the nasty details.

Thanksgiving day we went over to my parent's house and had a HUGE Thanksgiving lunch with all of the family. Everything was delicious and the girls enjoyed playing with their cousins. We then went up to my husband's mom and step-dad's house to spend the long weekend. Well, everything was going great until about 1 am when my husband got incredibly sick with the flu. He was the sickest I have ever seen him since we met. He spent most of Friday in the bathroom, but I'll save you the graphic details. Then I got a touch of it on Saturday while I was in the middle of the Fashion District in Los Angeles. Not the place you want to get sick as there are practically no bathrooms there. Yeah, fun times!

So, our weekend plans to go to my husband's 10-year reunion Friday night and then spend the night in a hotel just the 2 of us were totally out of the question. I canceled the hotel and my husband e-mailed his reunion planner and they actually refunded our $120! Woo hooo! The girls got to spend tons of time with their grandparents which they absolutely loved, I got no crafting accomplished, and we ended up giving my mother-in-law the flu. Talk about feeling terrible. It's one thing to be sick at your in-law's house but to then get them sick as well is a whole different story. (If you're reading this Grandma and Silly Grandpa, the girls had a blast and are already asking when they can come back. Chris and I want to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for taking care of us and for all you do for us. We love you!)

That about sums up our fun weekend! I had visions of cutting out aprons in preparation for this week's sewing, making a few hair bows, and completing my game plan. Unfortunately none of that happened. The one thing that I did do was to go to Barnes and Noble and look through tons of craft books. I had so many I could barely carry all of them. I found so many great ideas, and now have a more clear plan of what I'm going to make for the hard people on my list. Yeah!

Today was spent cleaning the house and unpacking, so tomorrow I have to start sewing! I've gotta get started or I'm gonna kill myself in the last few days like usual. I won't do that this year, I won't do that this year, I won't do that this year! Keep me to my word, okay?