27 July 2009

As you can see, we couldn't keep Oliver out of Granddad and Groovy's pool. At two years old he's diving head-first, running and jumping and floating on his back from one end of the pool to the other. Isn't he a fun guy?

Talking heavy machinery with Granddad.

We celebrated my birthday (a little belated because of when the visit fell) one evening (though by the pictures, it's hard to tell if it's my cake or Oliver's). :)

Cute cousin Chloe was SO excited to play with Oliver!

And, yes, this is the best we could do - two out of three ain't bad!

25 July 2009

We've been enjoying a lovely, relaxing visit with Ryan's parents in the North this week so I've been much too busy poolside to open my computer to blog. It's tough to spend a week watching Oliver enjoy his grandparents, being fed delicious food and taking a break from keeping my house, but somebody has to do it! :)

This morning Ryan's Mama and I snuck away for about an hour to see what their town has to offer in the way of yard sales. It was certainly a far cry from the intense Saturday morning bargain hunting to which I have become accustomed, but it was nice and relaxed and I was quite satisfied to walk away with just a few little treasures all for under $4.

Here is what I found:

$1.10 - a bundle of 14 wooden quilting/cross stitching hoops - something I've been planning to buy at the fabric store, so you can imagine my delight at this treasure!

How on EARTH do I plan to use fourteen hoops?

So glad you asked! I came across this picture on a blog recently (wish I could remember which one!) and fell in love with the idea of displaying various sizes of circles of lovely fabric on the wall as art. I have become particularly fond of Anna Maria Horner's fabric designs and plan to hit Etsy for some fat quarters with my remaining birthday money! Hurrah for lovely things! (and hurrah for finding things you need on the cheap!)

(not my photo)

{quick update: one sweet blog reader just shared this afternoon that she and her husband actually make these in larger hoops and sell them to be hung in offices or study spaces as bulliten boards. Check out her blog to see beautiful photos of their work.}

$0.25 - A nice pair of "snippers". I had no idea what these are but my mother-in-law has informed me that they are quite useful for snipping threads as I sew. They are spring loaded, sharp and tiny, and I imagine she is quite right about their usefulness! Thanks for the heads up!!

$0.25 - I know, it's kind of ghetto to buy cosmetics at yard sales, but... I did it. I dug through a sealed free sample bag from Clinique and found this untouched-by-human-hands (or lips!!) tube of lipstick. I like the color and it cost a quarter - I'm going for it!

$0.25 - And finally, a lovely bracelet that I'm wearing even as I type. I'm not a big jewelry fan (never felt like I could pull it off), but this is small and simple and I love this color. I'm really happy about it!

I just realized that I didn't list a tuck-n-run find for the day. Hmm... I think I know what it would be, but I'd love to hear what you think! Which of the 4 items I bought today would you say were my biggest prize?

Oh, and before Mr. Linky, I do want to show you what I found at a consignment sale last week for my sweet sister and brother-in-law who are expecting to retrieve their twin boys from Ethiopia sometime this fall. She's had the Joovy Big Caboose on her wish list for almost a year now, but never a spare $400 lying around the house to make it happen. So, you could imagine my delight when I found myself browsing a sale last week and spotted this in the corner of the room...
... for $40!!!

Um, SOLD! And, yes, my sister was THRILLED! That can be my tuck-and-run for last week for sure! (And, did I mention that this stroller is compatible to carry to infant carriers in those front seats and there's a jump seat in the back for a certain 2-year-old little girl to either sit or stand and ride.

Okay, enough about the stroller.

Now, I'm dying to hear about your finds! You can link either what you found this week OR last week since I was totally negligent about posting. Post and share!!!

Oh, and don't forget to tell me what you think is my best buy of the day!
Happy Weekend!

24 July 2009

Three of my girlfriends had new babies over the course of six days last week. Hurrah for new life!

One of those sweet babies is Miss Amelie (AH-meh-lee). I had the privilege of photographing this dark haired beauty on Monday and was pleased with what we are able to walk away with after a 45-minute shoot that was 90% crying.

Welcome to the world, sweet girl. We love you!

15 July 2009

Last night I had the pleasure of breaking-in the gift that Ryan gave me for my birthday.

Mmmmm.... is it possible that spaghetti sauce has never tasted so good?
I think I'm in love!
Oh, and the pan is really nice too!

12 July 2009

I spent my birthday evening this year in my backyard, surrounded by good friends and festive music, enjoying the tastes and flavors of the Earth that God has given us to enjoy.

We sampled wines and cheeses (and a few fantastic beers for those fellas who do not care for wine) and generally feasted on life.

"You cause the grass to grow for the livestock and plants for man to cultivate,
that he may bring forth food from the earth
and wine to gladden the heart of man,
oil to make his face shine
and bread to strengthen man's heart."
-Psalm 104:14-15

"Dining is and always was a great artistic opportunity."
-Frank Lloyd Wright

"Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,
and your labor for that which does not satisfy?
Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food."
-Isaiah 55:2

"My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food,
and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips."
-Psalm 63:5

"If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold,
it would be a merrier world."
-J.R.R. Tolkien

11 July 2009

I just posted all about my great garage sale finds a few minutes ago, but I'm moving right along to share a few photos of our visit from the Case family this week/weekend.

Christine (my lovely college roommate) and her husband Steve, plus their three little ones (all two and under, by the way!) have been here visiting with us since Wednesday and will be rolling out early tomorrow morning.

Here are several failed attempts at photographing the children together (did I mention that there were four children age 2 and under in our home this week??). You'll notice the boys wearing coordinating initial t-shirts embellished by the Case Mama herself. They came in very handy when we took them to a nearby church for Super Hero Day to watch the Incredibles.
No eye contact from anyone, but at least everyone is in the shot.
Ooh, I see Baylor's eyes!
They were being markedly uncooperative.
And now, for the most successful shot of the week (even though two of the eight of us are looking distressed):

Come again soon, sweet friends! We love you dearly!

Here I am! It's past 9:00, but I am here! And, most importantly, I did find some lovely bargains this morning! Want to see?

$0.50 - Night stand clock from Restoration Hardware (for our newly loved-on guest room - stay tuned for an upcoming before/after post!)
$1.00 - white drum shade, also for the guest room

$0.25 - a handsome 2T Ralph Lauren jacket for you-know-who. He's asleep now, otherwise I'd take a photo. Shucks. I'm sure you'll be seeing it in posts to come!
$0.25 - a great pair of 3T Levi's jeans for fall. They are long and lean and actually have a great hole in the knee. I love them!
$0.25 - Charlotte's Web. It's the old, animated version, which I prefer!

$0.25 - Madeline and the Gypsies. Because Beatrice loves Madi-yine.

$0.25 - A spool of grey thread, a fabric hoop (I've got a vision!) and Presidents of the United Stated flash cards (I loved these when I was little. Nothing like a little flash card flashback!) And, yeah, I got all of it for a quarter. :)

$1.00 - A lovely, floral full sheet set. I'm in the final moments with my kitchen rag rug and I'm fixin' to start another one with a girlfriend next week!

$1.50 - A set of three Johnny Carson videos for my Step-dad. He'll love them!!

$1.00 - big black frame with glass and a white mat. This will go beautifully on my stair wall. (Hm, I will try to remember to share photos of that, one of my favorite parts of our house!)

And, my tuck-and-run find of the day:

Since I have begun selling my cute skirts on Etsy (it's been going quite well, by the way!), I've been in the market for specific supplies, particularly elastic. Just last week I paid $1.29 for 2-3 yards of elastic. Today, I found this box, with approximately 16 yards remaining (marked at $0.89 a yard) for a quarter!!!! Hurrah for buying things on the cheap that you need to buy anyway!

Oh, and since my dear Christine and her family have been visiting us in Tennessee this week, I had the pleasure of her company this morning. Since she is here with me, I want to share her tuck-and-run find of the day as well:

$1.00 - A brand new, 150-piece Lincoln Log set, with the smaller pieces still in the packaging. She didn't even have to bargain on this one, it was actually marked at one dollar. Yay, Christine!

What did you find today? Or, last week for that matter, since I took an Independence Day hiatus from bargain hunting. Link up here for all to see!

05 July 2009

Oliver and Ryan had a conversation this afternoon on the way home from church. To absolutely no one's surprise, it was about construction. 

Oliver (to Ryan, in his biggest, funniest, construction voice): "And, the dump truck said, "Obber, come here! What are you doing?'"

Ryan: "So what did you say to the dump truck?"

Oliver: "No, dump truck! It's not a dumping day! It's the Saddeth."

Repeat conversation 4-5 times, each time inserting a different piece of heavy machinery. 
(For example: "The roller said..." and then, "...it's not a rolling day! It's the Saddeth.")

We take the Sabbath very seriously around here, folks!

Also on the topic of Oliver and construction: this morning he was singing in the shower to the tune of "Tradition" from Fiddler on the Roof, "Constructiiiioooon, CONSTRUCTION!"


And one more Oliver story, just because I'm the Mama and I love to talk about him. :)

A few days ago I took Oliver to a free kids summer movie at a local church and needed to stop and get some cash somewhere on the way so I could get us a few snacks (they sell $2 Chick-fil-a kids meals with a coupon inside for a free kids meal! Woot!). 

I mentioned to Oliver in passing that we had to make a stop before the movie. Five minutes later we pulled into Target make it happen. As I circled for a parking space he offered an enthusiastic suggestion from the backseat, "Mommy, how about you go into Target to get some cash, and I stay in the van? That's a good idea! Right?"

Um, wrong, but nice try. 

By the way, who are you and what did you do with my little boy who didn't string together 22-word-long thoughts or whole imaginary conversations with heavy machinery, complete with different voices for different characters? 


03 July 2009

Eeek! I can't believe I just did it.

I just started an Etsy shop - my very own - and listed that adorable skirt from my last post. Am I a nerd for being so nervous?

So, we'll see what happens. I got such lovely, supportive feedback this week from y'all about the skirt I made for Beatrice, so I figured I'd take the leap and see if anyone really wants to buy one. If nothing else, making things like this is such a nice, therapeutic outlet for me. I would be honored to get to send a few of you custom Ragamuffin skirts through this little venture. (yes, that's what I decided to call them. ahem.)

If you aren't familiar with Etsy, let me explain a few things about how it works.

For custom items like this (yes, every skirt will be made to order), the best way to get things rolling is to go to my shop, click on the skirt, and then at the bottom you can click "contact the seller". In the message box that opens up, you can tell me what size you want the skirt to be (a waist/hip measurement would be ideal) and then I can contact you with current fabric choices for the waistband and hem. Once we get all of that squared away, I will create a "custom listing" for you with all of the details we discussed. You can go to that listing and click to purchase. It's that easy!

Okay, now I'm really excited! I'd love to hear feedback from y'all about what you think about the shop, etc. Do you think it's a fair price? (I really researched similar custom skirts on Etsy and did my best to list accordingly).

And, who knows, if this goes well, maybe I'll start making custom rag rugs!!

01 July 2009

I just answered some of your questions/comments in the comment section. I wonder if I should get a commenting system like MckMama so I can just respond directly. Hm...

**Original post follows**
I haven't really sewn much since college. But, since I've fallen in love with the Wonderland line from Moda fabric, I've been anxious to get the machine out and take it for a spin or two.

So, I made my way over to the Moda Bakeshop and found a tutorial to make this skirt. I had to make a few amendments so it would fit a 2-year-old, but within a few hours I managed to sew my way from this:

to this: