Monday, January 30, 2012

Valentine's Day T-Shirts for Boys??

Here's something you may not know about me. I am an excellent researcher. It's really not that hard, now that we have the internet. But it does take a little tenacity. This usually leads me to finding anything I could ever want shopping on line. It may take a while, but I can usually stumble upon it. Although, I have a stumper for you. Where can you find a Valentine's Day t-shirt for a 5 year old boy? You see, I typically send my nephew and nieces presents, especially if there is a holiday, such as Valentine's Day. I purchased the nieces little themed t-shirts at the GAP outlet last night (even found two of the same, in the same size! They are twins and you wouldn't believe how difficult it can be to find two of the same items of clothing in an actual brick and mortar store.) My nephew is 5 years old and wears a youth size small. Apparently, when you get out of the toddler sizes and you are a boy, then you don't get to be cute any more. Sad. He's still so little. There are no Valentine's themed shirts readily available over size 5T. And while he is very into fairness (and who isn't) I knew I had to remedy the problem. Good thing I can be crafty! I went shopping this afternoon, not sure what I was going to do, feeling a little desperate. My initial thought was to buy a t-shirt with a simple design (say a dog) and applique a heart somewhere on it. I headed to Target and found something I thought would work, but didn't love it. I headed to Joann's, hoping to find some inspiration. Wandering up and down the aisles, I came across the t-shirt iron on decor area. Then I spotted the Iron On Transfer printer paper. That along with a plain white t and I could design him his own holiday themed shirt. I created the design using Picnik, which is free and easy to use. But I won't go on too much about it, since it has been purchased by Google and will only be available through April. Use it while you can. To create artwork without a photo (it's intended for photo editing), go to the create a collage tab. From there you can add text and clip art. Don't forget to flip it to a reverse image before you print. I then printed the design on the iron on transfer paper. And now my nephew won't be sad for being left out of holiday themed tshirts! If interested, the artwork I created can be found below. You should be able to copy and paste it onto your desktop and print it from there. If that doesn't work, feel free to leave me a comment and I'll be happy to email it to you!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Doodle Mugs

I went overboard when I bought mugs for the monogram mug project. I really only needed one mug and I bought...four. When you're shopping at a thrift store and items are less than $1, it's easy to do. But those leftover plain white mugs were mocking me, just waiting have something done with them. While I am good at quite a few things, drawing is not one of them! Never has been. But then I came across this tutorial from an unlikely place, the Ladies' Home Journal website. I was nervous about the free hand drawing, but knew that the paint could be removed before it was heat set in the oven (I used a simple paint pen from the craft store). So, inspired by the tutorial, I tried a few free hand drawings on cardboard before I put pen to mug. I love the way they turned out! Although, I do have one little problem. Since Christmas, my mug population has risen quickly. I received 4 for Christmas, not counting the monogram mug I made myself. And I have very limited cabinet space. It may be time to thin the herd. And time to find a home for these two little puppies.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Layering Helps.

It's cold. In my office too. We are housed in an old P&G plant. Converted to friendly office spaces, of course, but not built originally for office space. With lots of windows, that don't insulate us much from the cold. So here's how my little hand manages to stay warm while hard at work. Fingerless gloves. The rest of me wears lots of layers. I recently made this infinity scarf just from some knit fabric purchased at Joann's (sooo cool for them, not their usual inventory angle). It's a layered burn out knit. I followed the basic instructions found here on Maya Made. This is an incredibly simple and quick project. Can also be made from wovens. And keeping me warm!

Monday, January 2, 2012

How I Spent My Christmas Vacation...

Whew! The holidays are over. And it's 2012!! (Who doesn't like a new beginning??) I always enjoy the holidays. And I'm always happy when they are over. (Isn't everyone, or is that just me?) It's winter now. Ugh. Cold. I don't like the winter. I'm a summer girl. I write this from my couch, wearing new flannel pjs (major bargain, 75% off at Old Navy this weekend!!), a sweater "coat" and house slippers, beneath two fuzzy blankets and sipping hot tea. Drafty, in here. (So that no one feels too sorry for me, my bedroom is nice and toasty. It's just the striking yet poorly insulated 8 foot windows in my living room that are the culprit.) At least it's only for a few months, right?
I just returned from visiting my sister and the three most adorable children that ever set foot on this earth. I know you'd like to see some pictures of them, right? I regret that I didn't dig out my real camera. These grainy, slightly out of focus pictures were all taken with my iPhone. Some turned out well, some are grainy and out of focus. But the memories are there. That's what counts, right? So, here they are, along with a short recap of how we spent our Christmas vacation.
We left cookies for Santa.
We bundled up. (This takes a while with three children.)
We gave lots of hugs.
We discussed Walter, at great length. (The real Walter is Nana's pug. Who Brooke is slightly obsessed with. The idea of Walter at least. Any dog she sees, she points to and says, "It's a Walter!" She also likes to incorporate his name in song. For instance, "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, Walter. Every where you go, Walter." Adorable and hysterical.)
We spent time together.
We made many poor attempts at taking posed pictures of three children.
We dressed up.

And played.
And rested.

And opened many, many, MANY presents.