Tuesday, April 30, 2013


Hello and welcome to my very last post of the A to Z challenge!  I think I did pretty good!  I was only late a couple of times and I got a post in for every letter.  Yay!

Today I am posting about zippers.  They are really great accessories that you can't live without.  Unfortunately, sewing with them is not the most fun thing to do.

Cue a link to an easy sewing project with a zipper!  

Here is my favorite tutorial for zippered pouches from Kelby Sews.  She does a great job with her photo tutorial explaining how to do them with a professional finish and I can speak from experience that they turn out great!!

Thanks for stopping by and congratulations to everyone who has completed the A to Z challenge along with me!  Tomorrow I'll get back to my usual "monthly goals" post :-) :-)

Monday, April 29, 2013

Yarn Letters

You know when you have a baby, and you can't wait to decorate their nursery?  You envision in your head the name hanging over the crib in all it's cuteness.

Yes? No?  Well, either way, that was me!

I loved the wooden letter ideas.  I had a grand idea of getting unpainted wood letters and hand painting them with cute designs.

And then I saw the price of wooden letters. What!  The big ones I liked were over $10 each.  and for the name A-I-D-E-N...that was $50!  Boo.

But then I came across the Pinfamous "Yarn Letters".  I loved how they looked!  So I grabbed some foam core board, some green yarn that matched my son's nursery, and my glue gun.

Here's the result.  You can tell not every single letter is perfect, but you can't tell from far away!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Xanthan Gum

Chances are you know someone who has gone gluten-free, either because of an allergy or just for general health reasons.

One ingredient that can aid in gluten free cooking is called Xanthan Gum.  In short, gluten helps in baking by holding ingredients together, and xanthan gum acts in a similar way.  It helps baked goods rise, and hold their new risen shape, capturing the carbon dioxide molecules and holding them there.

You really only need a tiny amount in your cooking and baking.

If you would like to try it out, here is a milkshake recipe that includes Xanthan Gum...supposedly it tastes like their is ice cream in the milk shake but it's just thickened up with the "special ingredient"!  Sounds like it might be a great way to make a low-cal shake!


Work In Progress

I wanted to share with everyone the project I have been working on this month!  A baby blanket!  It's a gender neutral blanket for first-time parents who aren't finding out the gender of their baby.  I just have to finish off the border and then it is d-o-n-e!

It might be hard to see because I took the picture with my phone, but the wording on the blanket is "eat, play, sleep, repeat" (in bobble stitches of the same color).  And isn't that the truth for little babies?!  I'll have to take some better pictures and post them when it's officially completed.

I love making baby blankets because they are always such fun designs, and are relatively quick to do!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Vegan {my fav recipes}

After my husband and I went on a cruise last year, we decided we were going to detox for a week and follow a "raw" diet.  Are you kidding me? I don't know how those raw people do it. Maybe I'm a big weirdo, but I need at least SOME hot food in my life.

So we modified a bit, and we made it pretty much through the week as vegans.  Actually, it was a pretty interesting experiment!  We found some really good substitutes we still use in our daily life, and we learned that you can really make some great meals without any meat, dairy, or other animal products.

There are 2 recipes in particular that we absolutely love and that I must share with you to try!  Vegans and meat-eaters alike will adore these dishes, I promise!

This first one we had for dinner tonight, I swear!  Black Bean and Butternut Squash Burritos.  The butternut squash takes on a meat-like texture, and while it is a little sweet, the cumin is pretty strong so it makes it not overpoweringly sweet.  You can fill them up with all sorts of mexican-style toppings...cilantro, avocado, lime juice.  And, if you're NOT vegan, you could add some cheese (very yummy!) or sour cream.  Get the recipe here!

Photo Source  

The other recipe is a yummy summer alternative to beef burgers.  It's a sweet potato veggie burger!  Let me tell you, these are so a-mazing with avocado on them.  The panko breadcrumbs give them a really nice crunchy texture.  The beans make them hearty.  Just. So. Yummy.  They're quick and easy, the longest part is cooking the sweet potatoes and scooping out all the "meat"!  Get the recipe here!

Photo Credit

Vegan and non-Vegan alike, enjoy!!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Upcycling {tshirts}

Upcycling is all the rage, and hey- why not!  You get to keep old stuff, it's good for the environment  and all that jazz!

Let's talk specifically about t-shirts.  I have probably 100,000 t-shirts shoved in to my dresser drawers.  Do I need that many?  Probably not.  But they are my go-to around the house clothing and to be honest, I love them.

Sometimes there's such thing as too many t-shirts.  Or maybe some are too sentimental to you to get rid of them.

Here are some ways to up-cycle those t-shirts and make them useful for years to come!  Click the "photo credit" link to go directly to the site the project came from.

This bag looks super easy and I love that the extra t-shirt material was used to add a flower or a bow.  This would make for a cute tote bag if you have a t-shirt in a pretty color!

Photo Credit

Here's another bag, and I"ve actually done this one!  It's no sew, which is great, and it's super quick.  It won't work right for every t-shirt design, I found.

Photo Credit

I love this t-shirt scrap skirt from I Am Momma Hear Me Roar.  The colors are great and you can't even tell the fabric came from t-shirts.  Looks like a good way to re-use all that little kid clothes that doesn't fit anymore!

Photo Credit

Baby rompers from adult t-shirts??  Where was this idea a year ago??  I totally would have done this when Aiden was a baby.  Too cute!

Photo Credit

Yarn from t-shirts!  Imagine the crochet possibilities!  I want to try this and see how much you get from 1 t-shirt. 

Photo Credit

Again, where was this a year ago??  A baby in a gown from an adult t-shirt would be so freaking adorable.  Love!

Photo Credit

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tutorials {and how to write a good one!}

Everyone has a different reason for being involved in the blogging world, and I think for me the thing that I use other blogs for the most is tutorials on various things, whether it be craft projects or crochet tutorials, or help with sewing techniques.

I've come across many many great tutorials, so I wanted to take a step back and see what exactly makes them so great.  So here are some tips for any aspiring tutorial writers to make sure you are getting the most out of all the work it takes to write up a step-by-step tutorial!

1.  It's all in the details.  Is there such thing as being too detailed in a tutorial?  Where you might think you are going overkill, someone else might just be wondering about the detail you left out.  If you thought about it, write it down!

2.  Use lots of pictures!  I love photo tutorials, especially for crafting.  Arrows and captions help too, so you know exactly what you're looking for.  Sometimes it's hard to put something in to words, so it's a great way to still get that point across.

3.  Make it fun.  Just because it's a tutorial doesn't mean you can't let your personal writing style show through.  Sometimes that's what makes them feel more personal - like your best friend is telling you how to do something.

Happy Tutorial Writing!

Share It