Vintage goodness!

I don’t have access to a cool thrift store. You know, the kind where you can find cute clothes in nice fabrics, bedsheets that aren’t stained up, patterns…. I suppose that many people around me are simply more thrifty–stuff doesn’t get given away until it’s used up, stained, etc. Or maybe it’s because I don’t live near enough to one to visit every day.

Since I don’t have a cool thrift store, I am periodically offered stuff from relatives…sometimes it’s nifty, but most of the time it’s just trash (or at least not something I need/want). Grandpa told me to go look through a closet in the back bedroom that had some clothes he used to wear way back when that he thought would fit my skinny hubby. I was actually kind of surprised to find 3 shirts that I wanted, though two of them were for me! (The third shirt is for hubby, and it wasn’t anything particularly special, just a standard cotton button-up.) I ended up with two of the same one, they are just in different colorways–the other one is a kind of rusty red, but I couldn’t seem to get a good picture of it while I was wearing it, so you’ll just have to use your imagination. πŸ˜‰

Cute, right? And they fit pretty much perfect, if you ignore the pulling at the bust; but what’s some wrinkles between friends? Unfortunately, the red one has some holes starting in the front (I’m thinking it got snagged on something at some point), and the blue one has a few tiny stains. I’m having a hard time caring though (even if 1978 is calling and wants its shirt back), I’m going to wear them, and when they give up I’m going to think pretty hard about copying them. πŸ™‚

Happy birthday to me!

Yeah, I know, I got married REALLY close to my birthday….which in turn happens to be REALLY close to Mother’s Day. (I don’t recommend this, you generally only get one gift, and it may not be as big as you might think….) πŸ˜‰ Actually, I might be getting a Kindle Fire, it depends on if my hubby agrees that it’s an acceptable amount of money to spend. He did get me flowers for our anniversary, a huge, beautiful vase of them. (Back off ladies, he’s mine!) Which reminds me that I want to thank you all for the lovely anniversary wishes, we had a very nice evening–we sent our kiddo to the neighbors and I grilled up some fabulous steak and twice baked potatoes, and then we just got to snuggle on the couch and visit for a while. That probably sounds really boring to some of you, but for us, it was a nice break. πŸ™‚

Anyway, I think my birthday will mostly consist of having a nice dinner that I don’t have to cook and hanging out with my family. Otherwise, it’ll be business as usual, because we’re down to the finishing touches on our bathroom, and I’m past anxious for it to be done. Well, I say that, but I’d been unmotivated to finish up the cabinet doors/drawer fronts that make up the last of the bathroom remodel. I think I’m just being a lazy bum though, because the other day I went downstairs after finishing up a repair job on a friend’s blouse and couldn’t even work up any enthusiasm for the Burda blouse that I’ve been unable to work on for the past month. I’ve been doing some fantasy sewing though, mostly in the form of staring longingly at Simplicity 1798, and the fabric that I have lined up for it….well, that and stalking PR to see if anyone has posted any reviews of it (none so far). What? You don’t do that?

Anyway, I’m going to end this here, I think I’ve blathered on long enough–I’ve got a Kindle Fire to research. πŸ˜‰

Halloween Sewing

Halloween is probably my favorite holiday, because it’s fun, requires no major travel, you get to dress up, and did I mention it was fun? As I’ve done *nearly* every year, I made my son’s costume because not only is it hard to find things that fit him, but every year I look through the racks at boy’s costumes and am dismayed at not only the selection and price, but the quality (or serious lack thereof) as well. Seriously? Gah! Why do people buy this crap? I know it’s not because it’s affordable.

But, I digress….sorry. So this year, I found a nifty blog called The Train To Crazy (which I ❀ that blog name, seriously), and found several really cute handmade Halloween costume options. The one I chose was the Dinosaur Tail one that my son chose out of all the (boy) options here. I made his tail out of a green felt from Hobby Lobby, with yellow felt spikes. Sadly, that was the easy part. The hard part was finding a hoodie–who knew?! We looked at no less than 5 stores for a dark green hoodie so that I could sew a couple more yellow spikes to it to make the complete costume. 😦 We did finally find one, even though it had a stupid faux team logo on it (why do they do this?!) that was a similar shade of hunter green. I like using hoodies in the costumes because I can just baste/pin the pieces to it, and after Halloween is over I can remove them so that he can just wear the hoodie. Yeah, I’m a cheapskate like that, but it works out really well. I’ll be sure to get some pictures tonight, because right now he’s wearing it at school and I don’t have any pictures yet….probably because I was finishing it up last night–shhhhh! Don’t judge.

Edited to add the picture! πŸ™‚

Well, that’s all I have for now, I’ll put up another post with pictures or edit this one to add them later this evening or tomorrow. Hope you have a happy Halloween! πŸ™‚

Tomato Soup and Sandwiches

Last night I made up the no-knead bread that Nick over at Macheesmo is always raving about. It takes forever, but it turned out pretty good. I think it would have been better if it hadn’t fermented for like 28 hours instead of 20, and because it was so late getting made up I skipped the proofing. I think it’ll be really nice for what I wanted though, and that’s all that matters. πŸ™‚ We’ll definitely be trying it again.

To go with the bread (which I made into grilled cheese sandwiches), I also made up some homemade tomato soup, based on the recipe from EvolvingMommy. Mine is a bit different though–I found some Del Monte Italian Stewed Tomatoes at the grocery store for less than 75Β’ each, so I used those instead of the fresh tomatoes. I also bought really big celery and carrots, so I used one celery stalk and two carrots. My little guy and I both liked it, but the hubster wasn’t totally convinced. He said it was bland…..it’s tomato soup….? Anyway, I didn’t notice an overpowering flavor of celery my way, so I’d probably stick to that for us (I’m not a celery fan), and I may not have cooked the veggies long enough because the soup wasn’t quite as smooth as the stuff from the can.

All in all, I’d recommend both of these recipes. They worked well for us, and made a filling, healthy lunch on a day that started out a bit chilly. πŸ™‚ I’m anxious to see how it reheats so that I can decide whether or not to make up another batch to freeze.

The Staycation Project

This last week we’ve been on a staycation. Or, more specifically, my husband has been (since my new job doesn’t start until this week). His job requires him to take off a full week every year, and this was his week of choice. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to go anywhere terribly special, but we did get to spend some quality time together as a family, and also as a couple when the little man went to grandma’s for a couple of days. Twas very nice. πŸ™‚

Anyway, so while I know that we’re probably weird to everyone else, we enjoy working together on little projects. That’s not to say that we don’t disagree on stuff, just that for the most part we have fun and enjoy the companionship (and the challenge, of course). This last week our project was a laundry basket dresser. Our is a bit more fancy than the one in the original post, and will look a bit more like this one:

Photo by: jensimmons @ ana-white.com

Ours will be white (well, Fairhaven Grey), like this one, and it has some funky dimensions because we have 2 different types of laundry baskets and we’re too cheap to buy new ones for this when the old ones are in great shape. I totally stole the door and furniture feet idea from this version though, because it seemed like an awesome idea to make it a bit more classy. Though, if you are building something and want the little feet, plan to drive to a big box store–they’re in the trim aisle–because our locally owned store wasn’t even sure what we were talking about and didn’t carry them (not that they know in the big box store either–we found them by accident). We even got to use a router for the first time on this project. We’re totally going to have to get one of our own–this one was borrowed from the in-laws, and they’re probably going to want it back someday. It made putting the beadboard into the doors a whole lot easier, and gave the edges of the doors a slightly more professional look. We hope to get it painted up sometime in the coming week, once it dries out a bit. Though if the rain stays around all week we won’t cry about that either. πŸ˜‰ We’ve been in serious need of rain for months.

Hopefully I’ll get some sewing done in the next couple of days, and I am confessing now that I cheated and bought a jacket to get me through until I get another one made up. As slow at sewing as I am, it seemed to make sense to purchase a jacket for starters and then make a backup so that I wasn’t rushed.

Have a great week! πŸ™‚

Happy Labor Day (for some of you)!

Today is Labor Day in the U.S., which means that hubby had a 3 day weekend. There isn’t much better than the one you love getting to stay home and hang out with you. πŸ™‚ Though, a raspberry tart might come close to that. So we had it REALLY good, since we had hubby AND a raspberry tart. I had never even made one before today, but when I saw the raspberries in the store yesterday, looking delicious and being on sale, I couldn’t resist picking them up. At first, I had no idea what I was going to do with them, but then the words “raspberry tart” popped into my head and I had to take note.

First stop was my food blogging hero, Nick @ Macheesmo. He said that his tart was a failure because it was too liquidy and whatnot, so I took care not to make it too liquidy. First thing I did was toss a handful of the raspberries into a saucepan over medium heat and smooshed them with a potato masher (just like my mother used to do with sandplums to make jelly). Add about 1/8 C. of brown sugar, 1/8 C. of honey (I didn’t have more brown sugar), a healthy dash of cinnamon, and cooked it down until it was pretty thick. Toss in the rest of the berries (I had two 6 oz. boxes, minus a couple oz. we ate 😳 ) to coat them with the “jelly”, and smear them over the pastry that I provided in the link above. I baked mine at 375Β°F for about 35 minutes, but I’m not really sure what time/temp is recommended. I just default to 375Β°F if I have no idea what I’m doing, because it’s usually a safe bet. I was actually surprised it took so long to cook, I kept adding ten minutes to the cooktime until it was done.

After it cooled I tried my hand at melting some chocolate in a makeshift double boiler. I didn’t get it as liquidy as I wanted, because it didn’t drizzle very nicely, but it tasted freakin’ awesome, and that’s what’s really important, right? Right. Serve it up with some homemade vanilla ice cream, and you have heaven in a bowl.

I really wanted to get some sewing in this weekend, but the weather has been so fabulous that we’ve spent a lot of time outdoors (or baking!) We’ve had the windows open for two whole days now and it’s been just beautiful. I think the high today was like 78Β°F, if it never got hotter than that, I’d be the happiest of campers. Anyway, this post got kind of long winded, sorry about that. Hope you had a fabulous weekend whether it was a holiday for you or not. πŸ™‚

I’ll leave you with some pictures. πŸ™‚

Tart after baking

Mmmm. Drizzled with chocolate

 

A little slice of heaven

It was a long day…

Today was the big day. I made color-swirled cupcakes with orange buttercream frosting (from scratch):


I spray painted, planned out a scavenger hunt, and assembled this:

And while it was stressful, it was worth every second of effort to see this:

Birthday boy with his new "tractor". πŸ™‚

Progress Report

I finally found some dental floss yesterday evening (in the bathroom drawer–who knew?) and so I decided to give it a try to see if it would work. Sure enough, a couple of passes through the machine and I was back in business. Woot-woot! I’m still thinking that this machine is a bit high maintenance for my taste, it seems like this thing has to be flossed more than I do! πŸ™„ With any luck, I should be able to finish up the PJ’s just in time for Friday (the big day!).

I also finished the rain train this morning before the oven kicked on (and by oven, I mean Mother Nature). I’m waffling about whether to give the tractor a number or not….hubby says it’s not a requirement, but I just feel like it’s not really a tractor without a number…..4020 maybe? It kind of looks like this one (picture from AntiqueFarming.com)

One thing that should be noted before I reveal the pictures is that–I am not now, nor have I ever been–good at spray painting. I suck at it, (guess I’ll never grow up to be a graffiti artist) and I’m still reeling from shock that there aren’t more runs in the paint than the two that I’ve found. So I’m pretty proud of myself.

Primed and ready

Finished paint job

Yes, it’s still in pieces, and it actually won’t be assembled until the kiddo goes on a scavenger hunt for all the pieces. Probably a dorky idea to everyone else, but I like it, so we’re gonna do it. πŸ˜‰

It was over 100Β°F here, and I held off a little too long on making the cupcakes for the little guy to take to daycare with him. I was hoping to do them tonight, but I waited too long for it to cool off (it was still 88Β°F when I looked just before 10 p.m.) because I didn’t want to crank up the oven and overwork our poor A/C unit any more than Mother Nature already has. I guess I’ll have to get up early tomorrow & make them up. πŸ˜•

Wishing you a FABULOUS Father’s Day!

One of my peeps behind-the-scenes in my wonderful husband. I was blessed with a man who isn’t scared to be a father–and a GREAT one at that. It’s sad these days that so few children seem to have a great father in their lives, and in that regard, we’ve truly been blessed. I have a wonderful father of my own, a wonderful father-in-law, and a husband who proves every day that he is more than worthy of the title “Dad”.

Here’s hoping that each and every father has a fabulous day of celebration.

Anyway, I should probably move on from the sappy stuff. Hubby is likely to read this, and he’s not much for sappy stuff–or so he claims. πŸ˜‰ For his day I made a golf shirt (pics to come later, we forgot it in the in-laws combine last night :oops:) from Jalie 963, view A. Here’s the very 90’s-y looking picture of it. (Jalie patterns are ranged from Toddler to “Whoa Big Daddy!” all in the same envelope, so ignore the fact that there’s only kids on the picture). Review of the pattern later.

For his special breakfast he got pancakes, bacon, and scrambled eggs. He also got Chalupas (recipe here) for lunch, because he loves Mexican-style food. I even made some “beignets” with some of the chalupa dough for dessert, which turned out really good. πŸ™‚ I think we’ll just have something light for supper after all of that though, because we’ve eaten way more calories than we’ll end up burning, I’m sure. πŸ˜›

Mission(s) Accomplished!

I finally finished my bra project last night, though I have no pictures yet. I’ve never been so glad to finish something ever, which is odd, considering I actually enjoy sewing bras–they are usually a fun challenge. I guess it’s because I felt like I had to make them and get them finished quickly because I need them desperately. Then just because I needed something fun, I decided to make a nightie for myself. My yucky oversize t-shirts are getting holes in them, so I decided to try my idea of making the Lekala pattern from here into a comfy jersey nightie with peek-a-boo lace trim down the sides instead of the bows. I have the pieces cut out (so much faster to sew when you don’t have to trace!!) and the darts sewn/pressed. After that, it should pretty much be a walkΒ  in the park, though I’m still contemplating my plan of action on the straps. I don’t think I’m going to try and make them all one piece with the binding like I did last time. I guess I’ve got a couple of hours to think about that though, so I can surely come up with something. πŸ™‚

 

In other exciting news, I found my son’s birthday present today. I bought him a “rain train”. It’s used, and most of the paint is gone, perfect for me to repaint it to look like one of those John Deere ones that cost a small fortune and aren’t made quite as heavy as this old one is. (I’m pretty sure it’s cast iron!) You might think this is a silly gift, but it’s like a two-for-one deal–we get the benefit of a sprinkler we don’t have to keep track of/move, and our son gets the cool tractor sprinkler that he’s been asking about to play in. And maybe he’ll even be willing to help put the hose out when he’s ready to play. πŸ˜‰ It’s the holding off until his birthday next month that is going to be a killer….maybe we’ll have to give it to him earlier and get him something small and inexpensive for the actual day.