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Monday, June 25, 2012

Gender Reveal Scratch Ticket!

I absolutely loved this project because it was something that dear husband (DH) and I were able to do together. Have I mentioned before how talented DH is? I have got to showcase some of his work on here... another day. Today is all about the big gender reveal! We mailed these super cute scratch tickets off to close friends and family: (Tutorial posted at end of post.)

Can you read the card ok in the picture? Just in case, it says:

Baby Who? Scratch Ticket
Ten little fingers, and ten little toes
Two little eyes, and one little nose-
Little girl pink, or little boy blue
We think it's time that you all knew-
We're having a... 
*odds of winning based on 100% probability

I came up with what I wanted the cards to say, and about how I wanted them to look and DH created this! A hundred times better than anything I could have done! And now, drum roll please... We're having a...
A boy! Can you believe it? What the heck are we going to do with a little boy? We only know what it's like to have a little girl around here! Oh goodness, I guess we're just gonna love him and I'm sure he'll teach us how to raise a boy... one day at a time. We're pretty sure we already have a name picked out, but since I do try to keep names off the blog we will use initials and refer to him as SJ around here. Proof? You want some proof? 
Pretty obviously boy, eh? Thus the, "odds of winning based on 100% probability!"

The scratch tickets were fun and we had all the supplies we needed already laying around the house:
Card stock
Packaging tape
Paint brush
Craft paint (We used 1 tablespoon and had a lot left over)
Dish soap (We used dawn)

All you need to do is print whatever you so choose onto card stock and cover the part that will be painted with a strip of packaging tape. Then, mix the paint and dish soap together two parts paint to one part soap. Paint over the tape in a thin coat and allow to dry. If you need to, you can go back and add another coat of paint later.
Like I said, this was a fun activity for my husband and I to do together. I brainstormed, and he created our design. I taped and he painted. And we both got to test a couple just to make sure it worked, cuz hey- scratch tickets are just fun!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Dancing baby

Here is a video of our little girl dancing this morning... especially love the belch around 42 seconds!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

First camping trip.... almost!

We had an opportunity to go camping with our ward from church at the hot springs! How cool is that?! We decided to buy a tent as an investment for many more camping trips to come, probably even more camping trips this summer! We loaded up the SUV with sunscreen, bug spray, blankets, food, lanterns, band aids... we were bursting at the seams in a most ridiculous way. I'm surprised everything didn't fall out when we finally stopped and opened our doors! We had such an excellent time swimming around in the indoor swimming pool that was cooled down to 95 degrees. No need for sunscreen or goosebumps! Little girl LOVED floating around and even started getting brave enough to dip her face in the water and walk in the water unassisted. Everything was off to an excellent start! Dinner was AMAZING. Prepared for us were 23 racks of BBQ ribs smoked to their delicious maximum in a huge barrel. But, it was HOT and BUGGY and gosh darn it the sun stayed out FOREVER! Our super social little girl was hopped up on sugar (who isn't willing to share a cookie with such a friendly baby?), WAY over stimulated (she stopped to babble with everyone she passed, and climbed up on many an available lap) and was headed for an inevitable breakdown. Now, that breakdown may not happen until ten when it finally became dark enough to sleep, or maybe it'd happen even later when the campfire lost it's splendor, but either way I knew I didn't feel well enough nor did I have the energy to deal with it. And, I doubted the story would have the happy, ok lets all cuddle up in the blankets together and just sleep all night, type of ending... So, we packed up and headed out (and yes, that break down did come in the car. But, it was short lived because she was SO EXHAUSTED!) Little girl had bags under her sleepy eyes! The good news is she went right to bed no problem soon as we got home. So basically, this tent investment of ours... well, it's on hold. I think we'll try camping again in... ten years? Yea, sounds good to me.
Seriously? Too bad our tent didn't fit when we tried to set it up in the living room!

Thanks for all your hard work, sweetie!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Ultrasound Teaser

Ultrasounds are simply amazing. We were able to see our little baby yesterday at my 18 week appointment. I loved watching our baby move around and flex their joints and act so very lively. The ultrasound tech. was not only able to see this tiny person, who currently weighs in at 7 oz, but was able to take measurements, check out the brain, examine the heart that is smaller than my pinky finger nail, and even look close enough to check for a cleft lip. The good news is that all is healthy and well! Such a fantastic miracle; especially considering everything that could go wrong... More good news is that despite the pain I've been having, I'm healthy and well too. More than likely, I have round ligament syndrome which is super common so I really ought-a stop whining! Anyway, the bad news (for you!) is that I'm not going to reveal baby number twos gender just yet. We mailed cute little crafty announcements off for the big gender reveal to close friends and family, and I don't want to spoil the surprise for them by an early announcement on my blog! Come back on Tuesday... In the mean time, you can decide which one of us parents baby number two resembles! ;-)
An incredible 3 D picture of babys legs, crossed at the ankles. So cute!
Another great leg picture!
Profile shot of the head.
And, oh! A little foot. Just darling.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Now on Facebook!

Sewing Our Life Together is now on facebook! "Like" my page by going here and be the first to find out about exciting events to come on sewingourlifetogether.blogspot.com. I have BIG things planned!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Blue Linen Bermudas

 So... I'm: Pregnant, Frugal, Tall, Long legged, and I'd really like to wear Bermudas for Summer time... Not happening. The best I could find, at an affordable store, had a ten inch inseam. Bermudas with a ten inch inseam on me are no longer Bermudas, they're awkward length shorts. Not long ago, I'd have given up and worn capris all summer, but now that I'm learning to sew... I thought: I don't have to settle! I shopped the sales at Joanns, including a 99cent pattern purchase, (McCall's 5391) and made myself a new pair of blue linen Bermudas. TOTAL cost 17 dollars. FYI this was cheaper than any maternity Bermudas I found online; even from the virtual sale racks!  The only changes I made to the pattern were to add length to the shorts, and to make an elastic waistband. Because the waistband was going to be elastic, I skipped the zipper and sewed the fly shut, I also skipped the belt loops. I'm pretty happy with the way they turned out, next time I'll adjust the fit so they feel a little better but that's to be expected when sewing from a pattern, right? I at least know that these shorts are second trimester friendly!Score.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Fathers Day

Happy Fathers Day to my own Dad, whom I love dearly. In 2008 I was in Africa, in 2010 I was in California, and here we are three states away for Fathers day 2012. Apparently I can only stand to celebrate the big day with my dad every other year. Sorry pops; at least your card was mailed off in time! But seriously, thanks for being such a great dad and friend.
Here I am carving pumpkins as a kid with my dad and brother.
Dad and I a year ago.
And happy Fathers Day to love of my life, too! One thing that is so awesome about my husband is that loving him is so effortless. We laugh together (all the time- he is so funny!), cook together, clean together, go out together, worship together... he's my best friend, and our daughters best friend too! No one can make our toddler laugh as much as he can! I really appreciate how present he is when he's at home with us. I know being a full time student and maintaining the awesome grades he has cannot be easy, but he never makes his responsibilities into our burdens. Basically, he's just awesome.
Playing in the sink together.
Off to do laundry together; probably one of her favorite things!
Bath time!
We enjoyed soaking up the late afternoon sun yesterday by bringing out the little pool, lots of games of chase, and of course grilling. Summer time is my favorite!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

One of those days

I woke up sick, and startled actually because somehow in the dark my sleepy mind thought my jewelery box was a bear in our bedroom. So it was with a pounding heart and a churning stomach that I made my way to the kitchen to start my day off with a zofran and a grunt directed towards my always- too- cheerful- for- 5:30AM- husband. Later, our daughter threw a fit; just sobbed and sobbed when her dad went off to school and she realized she had to stay inside with a grumpy mama. This was going to be one long morning! But, the best way to combat a slow moving clock is to be productive. But wait, productive with a toddler around? Is there a way?

I emptied the dish washer and readied last nights dishes for the loading, and when I turned around I saw that my toddler had emptied not one, but two toy bins in our living room. Toys everywhere! Not that she wanted to play with them of course, it's just the thing to do ya know? Make messes while mom is cleaning. She was sitting on top of the couch, stripped down to her diaper having just learned how to take her own clothes off, and munching on some mystery snack she found within the couch cushions. Eek! I rushed it away and headed back to the kitchen to find her a mom approved snack, but when I turned around she had taken off. She had noticed the bathroom door, which I had forgotten to close and was crouched in front of the bathroom cabinet quickly emptying its contents. ARG!!! I pulled her out and closed the door, cutting her off from the piles of hairbands and soaps she'd discovered and she... was... MAD. Understatement. Oh, she was furious. She just stood there red faced alternating between yelling no and screaming as high pitched as possible.

No, she didn't want the snack I offered her. No, I could not interest her in a book. And, she only yelled louder to drown me out when I began singing all her favorite songs. So, I plopped down on the floor and told her, "Look, I don't like being a mom right now any more than you like being a baby! But, we're stuck here so what are we gonna do about it?" And would you know, she ran to our front door and struggled to pull on her striped coat while tugging at the door knob.

Good call little one. So, this tired, cranky, nauseous mom threw on a ball cap hoping we wouldn't run into anyone I knew and, after re dressing my child, we headed out the door. We walked and walked, arriving at the bank at 5 minutes ta 9:00. Perfect, I could convert our piggy bank of loose change into laundry quarters! Oh, our bank doesn't open until 9:30? Of course not. We found a bench to wait on and ate bananas while little one clicked and un-clicked the stroller straps. At 9:30 we learned that our bank doesn't have a coin counter. Seriously. This isn't a big deal, other places have coin counters, but I really, really just wanted to start crying.  I was actually envious of the fit of rage my little girl chose to display this morning. Darn inhibitions holding me back... and keeping me from being locked up in a looney bin.

I hope our afternoon improves (despite little girl having a doctors appointment and needing to get two shots today, poor thing.) If I end the day as grumpy as I started it... well... I guess I'm just going to blame in on pregnancy hormones and start over tomorrow.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

DIY Maternity Friendly Bubble Skirt

Some men surprise girls with flowers, my man buys me great shoes! Love.
 Remember the sleeves I made when sewing Simplicity 2892; the ones where the lining was shorter than the outer fabric so that the hem pulled under in a delicate poof? These sleeves inspired me to make a skirt. Apparently, this is not a new concept however and many bubble skirts are made in this way. There are plenty of really good tutorials out there, but I wanted to make my own maternity friendly version. The reason this skirt is dubbed maternity friendly and not just maternity is because this DIY project works for those who are expecting and for those who aren't, and also for those who are and only have a little bump so far, like me! The only difference lies in the waist band.
My little bump maternity waistband
On to the tutorial:
Main fabric (grey with white polka dots for me)
Lining (eh, I just used some muslin I had laying around)
Elastic and/ or other materials for your choice of waistband if not pregnant.  
Stretch fabric, like a jersey knit, if you are pregnant. (I used the spandex blend I use in my belly bands.)
Scissors, pins, sewing stuff...

1. Take your measurements. Measure for width: Measure your waist, if you are not pregnant. If you are pregnant, measure under your belly, at about your pelvic bone. This is what I did, my measurement was roughly 34 inches. Measure for length: Measure, from the point where you took your measurement for width, how long you would like your skirt. So, from my pelvic bone to my knees, roughly, I measured 22 inches.
2. Lets do a little bit of math! Calculate for the main fabric first. Double (or triple if you want extra poof) the above width. Add 4 inches to the above length.
Myself: 34 x 2 = 68 inches width, and 22 + 4 = 26 inches length. 
Calculate for the lining next. Add 10 inches to the width and subtract 4 inches from the length.
Myself: 34 + 10 = 44 inches width, and 22 - 4 = 18 inches length. 
3. Go ahead and cut your fabric into rectangles with the measurements calculated above. 
4. Sew the side seam together on the main skirt, right sides together. Take the long rectangle of fabric and fold it in half, right sides together. Where the length edges meet is where your side seam needs to be. And then, sew the side seam together on the lining too, right sides together.
Side seam from my skirt wrong side out.
5. Sew gathering stitches on the main fabric. (Using a long stitch, sew two parallel lines of stitches all around both the top and the bottom of the main fabric. Sew one at 1/2 inch and the other at 1/4 inch.) These will be used to gather the skirt in the next step.
See my almost straight parallel long stitches to be used for gathering.
 6. Sew the bottom of the skirt to the bottom of the lining: Choose one edge of the main fabric to be the bottom of the skirt and gather those stitches by pulling on the threads of the parallel long stitches. Choose one edge of the lining to be the bottom of the skirt and line that edge up with the gathered edge of the main material, right sides together! Pin in place and sew together. Now, with the main fabric right side out, pull the lining down through the inside of the skirt.
Lining up the gathered skirt bottom to the lining bottom
Here is the seam as I prepare to tuck the lining into the hole of the skirt.
Looking up the skirt. The difference in length between the skirt and lining pulls the skirt inward.
Another picture to show the bubble effect, this time from the finished skirt.
 7. Sew the top of the skirt to the top of the lining: Gather the top of the main fabric and pin/ sew it to the top of the lining.
We're almost done! 
Since we added 10 inches to our width measurement when we cut out our lining, this skirt is too big without a waist band. I like the extra width though because it slides on easily over hips! If you are pregnant, continue on to step 8 now. If you are not pregnant, make yourself a waistband: If you have a favorite waistband method, then please do what you like and attach it to your skirt. Otherwise, a really simple way would be to attach a thick band of elastic in a coordinating color, cut to the size of your waist. I suggest that you stretch the elastic as you sew to fit the top of your bubble skirt; after you're done, the elastic will have sprung back to its relaxed state and your skirt would therefore fit. Or, I suppose you could once again gather the top of your skirt to fit the size of your elastic and sew together to achieve the same effect. Just remember to use a zig zag stitch. This elastic waist band method would resemble this: 
Skirt with elastic waistband from ruffles and stuff.com
 Continue on here if you are pregnant: (This is what I did next.)
8. Sew yourself a belly band out of the stretchy fabric you chose. This is SO easy and SO fast. Do NOT panic. If you're not sure how to go about doing this, visit my tutorial here and then come right back to finish your bubble skirt! Hey- if you have a spare belly band laying around, you can just use that one!
Here is a picture of the belly band I used for the belly band tutorial. The only difference between it and the one I used for this skirt is the color! I just forgot to take a picture of my blue one before I attached it to my skirt today.
 9. Attach the belly band to the skirt. Gather your skirt top to the bottom of your belly band and sew them with right sides together using a zig zag stitch.
The zig zag stitch allows for stretch.
All finished!
 All that's left to do now is wear your fabulous skirt. And, hey if anyone does make this skirt for themselves I'd love to see how it turns out! Happy sewing!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Family Ever After Featured Me!

Blog parties are so much fun. They're a great way to see what other people have been working on, and an excellent place to make new friends here in blogland. It is just so rewarding when your entry is chosen to be featured, either as a host favorite or as a most viewed link, and I am lucky enough to have had my maxi skirt featured on Family Ever Afters site! Thanks Rachel!

Click here to see this weeks features and also to join in the super fun party!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Bill Cosby!

Bill Cosby came to campus and dear husband bought tickets and arranged for a baby sitter so we could have a fun date night! We went to dinner with some good friends beforehand and didn't get home until 10:00! Wow that sure is late for us, I'm dragging this morning! Definitely worth it though, Cosby is still as funny as ever! We enjoyed his jokes about his childhood the best, there is just something extra hilarious about stories told from a six year olds perspective... I wish I could quote him now and put some humor on this blog, but I know I'd just butcher the pun. Better stick to IMDb if you're lookin' for a laugh! This is the website he introduced to us to find a full bio, pictures, and over a hundred videos of his comedic career.
In our seats nice and early; before the sold out show filled up!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Simplicity 2892 and DIY skinny pants

About the shirt:
Simplicity 2892
Grandma brought me a pattern and a whole treasure chest full of fabric scraps including a lovely blue material that ended up being enough to make a shirt out of! I loved the puffier sleeves, but I also loved the ruffled collar on the sleeveless shirts so I combined parts from a couple of shirts to get the look I wanted. I became horribly confused over the sewing instructions when finishing the collar, but I was determined to 'fake it 'till I made it', and with a little improvising it turned out just fine. I also wanted this shirt to be wearable through out my pregnancy so I added width, but I forgot to add length, and was left with a short, boxy, awfully unflattering top. I hadn't spent several days worth of nap times sewing this shirt just to abandon it at the end though, so I brainstormed and remembered a tutorial I had seen on the ruffles and stuff site for shirring. Seriously, shirring is a lot easier and faster than I anticipated! Tedious, yes, but easy. I like how it looks on the shirt and I'm glad it'll keep my shirt down under my belly where it belongs!Can't wait to wear it when I hit like 30 weeks pregnant!

About the DIY pants:
I didn't want to wear this top with jeans because I'd disappear into a blue blob, so I looked through my closet and pulled out these light corduroy pants that I purchased in the 7th grade and haven't worn much because, well, the flare is just too much. I remembered pinning something on my pinterest sewing board about making jeans into skinny jeans and when I saw how easy it is to do I transformed my corduroys in all of 15 minutes and before my little girl even woke up this morning! The tutorial is posted here on the lucky design blog and basically consists of laying a pair of skinny jeans down on top of baggy jeans (both inside out), drawing the new shape and sewing up a new seam. Just don't cut until you try on your pants and like the way they fit, I had to make adjustments a couple of times!

What this novice seamstress learned from this pattern: 
1. How these fantastic sleeves are created. They have a lining that is slightly shorter than the sleeve and so when the two ends were sewn together, the hem is pulled under in a delicate little poof. I am totally going to remember this technique for a future skirt.
2. A technique for creating the gathers in the front of the bodice without having to do pleats. This pattern suggested a line of long stitches within the seam allowance of the neckline. Give the ends a little tug and the top gathers just so. Mine is a bit off centered, I really ought to pay more attention to detail. I'm wondering if a similar gather would make for a cute, more fitted maternity top when sewn beneath the bust?

Monday, June 4, 2012

Yellowstone Part Two

To see part one of our Yellowstone adventure, please click here. Remember that clicking on the pictures allows you to view them larger.
We kicked off a beautiful Monday morning by cruising down the road with a family of buffalo.
And then we made it in time to see Old Faithful erupt without having to wait the average 72 minutes for the next time.
Then, we did some learning... Did you know that the pools of Yellowstone vary in acidity even reaching an equivalent to that of battery acid?!
One time we turned around and discovered that our little one was tired and decided she wasn't going to walk anymore.
Next up was a visit to the incredible Yellowstone Lake. These pictures can't even do it justice, it was that lovely.
It made for a good place to stop and throw rocks. I have a general dislike for lakes, but this one was crystal clear and revealed a smooth rock bottom.
Oh! I forgot to mention that we turned little ones car seat around so she could face forward. We figured it'd be more fun for everyone and easier to keep her entertained during all the driving this way. Unfortunately, the adjustment combined with windy mountain roads made for one car sick baby. Here she is trying so very hard to keep her eyes open when nap time rolled around.
Our last adventure included the Virginia Cascades and a lot more wildlife on our way out.