Christmas Stories

8:16:00 PM

After a bunch of busy school related hustle and bustle, I'm glad to begin to experience the Christmas hustle and bustle. It will be much more relaxing.

Last night was Rob's and my first night where we actually felt we could relax with each other. After Jack was in bed, Rob told me of a program the radio station he works for put out this month. It is called "The Christmas Chronicles" by Tim Slover. We listened to half of the 8 episode long story yesterday, and I can't wait to listen to the rest tonight. I just have to share it with you. Here is the link:

The Christmas Chronicles

I also have a wonderful story that my grandpa told about Christmastime during WWII. As soon as I figure out how to post it, I will.

Merry Christmas!


turquoise and red Christmas decorations

8:41:00 PM

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We did. It was so much fun to spend time with both of our families. It was also very relaxing for me. (Rob would beg to differ. When I'm on vacation, I can't sit still so I call a relaxing vacation a time when I'm busy all day and then watch a movie at night.)

I am so thankful for everything I have. I feel so blessed. I love my family and I love my Savior.

The day after Thanksgiving, my mom asked me if I would be willing to decorate her living room. She had boxes and boxes of gorgeous decorations that seem to have tripled since I left home and I felt a little overwhelmed at first, but after sifting through it all, I got it all together.

I wanted to go with a turquoise and red theme because that is my favorite color combination and the combo was featured in a few of the Holiday magazine issues.

There weren't too many turquoise Christmas decorations, but luckily my mom already had some vintage turquoise dishes so we used those. Thanks to my brothers and sisters who helped so much.

Now I get to decorate our place! Phew. I can't wait to show you the ornaments we've added to our collection. I do love the holidays.


the stockings were hung...

4:29:00 PM

Sorry- no chimney...yet. I just got the stockings out early because I knew Jack would like to look at them. Remember last year? I finished these stockings last year- barely in time for Santa. They were done on Christmas Eve. I got the idea from some stockings from Pottery Barn Kids. They're not selling the ones I imitated this year, but they have some pretty darn cute ones. These were really fun to make. I just used felt. I stitched the pictures on with embroidery floss. I lined the stockings with cotton so Santa's treats wouldn't stretch the stockings out.

Here's Jacks:

Here's mine- a sugar plum fairy:

And here's Rob's. He actually did a little of it- good job sweetie!

Do you think I should put some different colored blue pom-poms on it like the others? Rob said I should leave them off, but his name is off center and I don't think it would be so obvious is there were pom-poms there. What do you think?



3:25:00 PM

Almost every larger scale sewing project I've done in the last few years has been made out of plaid.

Rob says the first step is to admit you have a problem.

baby stuff

vintage winter baby coat

9:56:00 PM

Well, it's been two weeks from since I began this coat, and while a week later than I planned, I finished Jack's coat just in time for the snow. I was going for a vintage 1940's and 1950's look, so after close inspection of a picture I found, I altered my pattern to fit the requirements. I moved the pockets close to the side seam and made them horizontal instead of vertical and I put all the buttons close together to give the illusion that the coat is longer.

I'm pleased with how it turned out, I'm also happy that I didn't spend half the time picking out stitches (as I usually do). I must be improving!

I was very lucky to squeeze the pattern pieces onto an old wool shirt that my mom accidentally shrank and gave to me. Total cost- $6. So, you know... I saved $200 right?

(Jack couldn't keep still, but here's a better front view of the coat.)

cool finds

Thanksgiving Decor

11:49:00 PM

I just thought I would put together some of my favorite Thanksgiving decor I've seen around the web. They don't all fit into any one particular style, but still, I like them.

Thanksgiving Hanging Leaves Garland- from Pottery Barn Kids

Fall Felted Acorns- from FairyFolk (my very favorite as seen above)

Handblown Glass Pumpkin- from JesseCGlass

Sweet Potato Pillow- from Nora Jane

Birch Pillar Candle- from Pottery Barn

Foglia Print Tablecloth- from Crate and Barrel


Vintage Christmas Cards

9:45:00 PM

I was rummaging through the University bookstore a while ago and I found this:

"Perfect!" I thought, "Just what I need for Christmas cards." Those of you who know me know I'm a sucker for vintage pictures. My mom collects vintage cards, and I love the cute depictions of innocent children and happy scenes.

So, for the few people I actually get a Christmas card out to, they'll receive something like this along with our family picture.

Are you as excited for the holidays as I am? I'm already pulling out some of our Christmas stuff.

baby stuff

winter coat coming along

9:35:00 PM

I know I said my goal was to finish the coat by the end of last week, but I promise I've been working on it almost every day for hours at a time. Today I thought I would finish it. It actually is almost finished. I would only need to do the buttons if Jack was the size of a 2 year old. Sadly, he is the size of a 12 month old, so I've got some major altering to do- I pretty much have to redo everything I did today. I was aiming for size 12-18 months, but I guess I missed the mark.

I did take a picture of the lining of the coat. My new machine allows me to do that cool swirly quilt stitching so I thought I would give it a shot. I know it looks like a jumbled mess probably, but look closely. What do you see?

Maybe two giraffes and an elephant in some super tall grass? I know the proportions are off, but hey, it was my first time.

kid stuff

what I've been having for lunch

8:26:00 PM

Please tell me I'm not the only one who had snacks like this growing up (other than my sisters). I've been having this for lunch quite often recently. Very simple, but still yummy.

Tomato-ey Nachos


tortilla chips
tomato sauce


Lay chips out on a plate.  Pour tomato sauce lightly on the chips.  Put cheese on top of everything.  Put in microwave for 30 sec-1 min.

feelings of a mom

winter coats

6:24:00 PM

I'm delaying working on yet another winter coat for Jack. I've designated one week to get it finished. It was really cold last week, but I was too busy with Halloween things. This week is warm, so the need isn't dire, but next week... Bleh.

This sewing project is more of a chore than fun. But I did tell Rob last night that we were saving $200 by having me make the coat of my dreams for Jack. I would post a picture, but I don't remember where I got it from. It is a beautiful coat. Of course, Rob knows better (and so do I)- I'm really only saving like $30 because I could just break down and by a regular baby winter coat. Maybe that's why I'm having a hard time motivating myself to do it.

In case you were wondering...

dress up

Jack Frost Costume

10:34:00 PM

I finally completely finished Jack's costume (tutorial for tunic found here). I put him in some light blue long johns that luckily matched. I also covered his shoes with some of the blue fabric and added little white icicle anklets. We added white to his hair and eyebrows and a little red his nose and cheeks to make him look cold.

Cute isn't he?

dress up

Father Time Costume

10:28:00 PM

costume, easy diy costume, halloweenRob's costume was very easy after the robe and the beard- just a clock tied around the neck. Rob colored his hair white last night- it looked cool.

Some people at the party thought he could have been a Grandfather Clock- also a good interpretation.

dress up

Mother Nature Costume

9:56:00 PM

It's finally done! I figured it all out, and it was all ready for the Halloween Party we went to last night.

Here's the front: rainbow sash made from tulle, purple velvety petals, a flowery shirt, and some feathers.

Here's the back: the sky and clouds along with some leaves and vines.

I had so much fun making the butterflies because I thought they ended up looking very real. Just crepe paper (from a streamer) with pipe cleaners. I liked drawing the designs on the wings.

I wrapped a piece of zebra fabric around my leg and wore fuchsia tights (so many of my flowers were this color this summer) and silver shoes.

Not pictured (because I forgot to put them on for the picture), I wore a shell necklace, turquoise stones, and orange leaf earrings.

I tried to include as much as I could think of. I think if I would have had more time, I would have done a little more- scales or a fin somewhere and maybe some more leaves. I think it would have been cool to glue some sort of caterpillar to my arm, but that wasn't really practical with a one-year-old.

dress up

a robe for a costume

6:44:00 PM

Although we are using this robe for Rob's Halloween costume as Father Time, it could also be used for a monk costume, a Jedi, a wizard, an angel or a spooky monster- pretty versatile.

Here is a simple step-by-step picture guide on how to make it:

  1. Start by folding a blanket or sheet (probably at least a full size sheet for an adult) by making ends meet in the middle.
  2. Have the person who will be wearing the robe, lie on the blanket with feet touching the ends of the blanket. Mark a few inches below the armpits.
  3. Mark a curved line on each side of the blanket using the armpit marking as a guide. This line will be straight along the middle (middle section at least 2 1/2 feet wide) then curve down for the arm. You can just estimate on the length.
  4. Cut along the markings and sew (sew where the red lines indicate. Just guess.
  5. Turn it right side out and try it on the person. Using all that left over fabric on top, try to manipulate it to form the collar and look you like. Use pins to keep the fabric in place. For Rob's, we pulled it all forward and pleated it down around his neck.
  6. Roll up the sleeves and mark where you would like them to end.
  7. Either safety pin or tack down your collar pins, then hem the sleeves.

Can't wait to show you the finished family look!


Halloween costumes still in progress

5:28:00 PM

I'm still progress with our family Halloween costumes. I'm pretty much done with Rob's (post to come soon), Jack just needs some shoes and... well, mine is stumping me a bit. But I do have this:

I got some tulle in rainbow colors! It's hanging up by my bed to encourage me to keep brainstorming about the entire costume.

This is what I have decided on doing:

  • feathers somewhere on the bodice
  • zebra print somewhere in the skirt
  • a globe pendant on a necklace
  • shells somewhere
  • flowers (paper or fabric?) on the bodice
  • leaves (paper or fabric?) for part of the skirt

Most of the stumped is in the materials to use for a lot of these things because the leaves are falling and crunchy and the flowers are dying. Hmmmm... Any suggestions?

dress up

Jack Frost Tunic... or Peter Pan... or just any tunic

6:33:00 PM

So, I've finished Jack's tunic for his Jack Frost costume. I still have some boots or shoes to go, but I thought I would post the tunic because it is useful for other costumes too. Last year, I did a tutorial for Jack and the Beanstalk. He wears a tunic too, but this one is just a little more detailed.

Note: Most of the numbers (in inches or yardage) refer to different sizes. The first number refers to about a size 12-18 months and the larger number refers to about a size M adult. If you are making this for a size in between, just estimate.


1/2 yard- 1 1/4 yards blue fabric

1/4 yard- 1/2 yard white fabric

1 sparkly white snowflake




sewing machine

Step 1

Find a loose fitting piece of clothing to base your pattern off of. You'll be cutting sort of a rectangle shape. Leave 1 1/2-3 inches on each side of the shirt, and cut the bottom to about mid thigh length. (I used a one piece jumpsuit just so I would know how long to make it.)

Cut the shoulders and neckline. For shoulders, angle up a little bit. For the back neck, cut a semicircle with a radius of about 1-1 1/2 inches. For the neck, cut a semicircle with a radius of about 4-6 inches. Mark a slit down Center Back about 4-6 inches long.

Step 2

Sew the shoulder seams and side seams. Make sure to leave 6-10 inches open at the top of the side seams. These openings will be the armholes.

Step 3

Fold the armholes, fold the fabric under 1/2 inch and topstitch. Reinforce the armpit area by sewing perpendicular to the seam at the end of the armhole a few times.

This is what it should look like.

Step 4

Cut out different sized triangles for the icicles. Be sure to leave a strip of fabric 4 inches wide. Sew two sides of the triangles right side together, trim corners and turn inside out. Press all of your cute little triangles.

Step 5

Pin the bigger triangles along the bottom of the tunic, (Pin to the right side) and sew along the bottom. It should look like this:

Step 6

Pin the smaller triangles to the neckline (again- right sides together), and sew around the neckline. Make little clips in the seam allowance 1 inch apart along the neckline.

Step 7

Cut a piece of blue fabric on the bias (about 2 inches by the length of the neckline- cut a little extra just in case). Press the fabric in a circle to mimic the neckline. Sew the bias piece on the neckline- all raw edges matching. Clip the bias tape too.

Step 8

Fold the bias tape inside the neckline. Pin and stitch. Make sure to keep the icicles out of the way.

Step 8

This step is really optional. It's a little difficult, so you can do a different method if you like. Basically, you'll be making a continuous bound placket. You'll need another strip of blue fabric (not on the bias) that is 2 inches by 8-12 inches. The directions for making a continuous bound placket are found here.

Note: This one is sloppy. My excuse: It's a costume.

Step 9

Cut a long strip of white fabric 4" wide by the length of your fabric. This will be either 44" or 60" depending on how wide your fabric is. Fold in half lengthwise and sew along the long edge. Pull inside out. Tuck ends in and sew the tie closed. Press.

Thread the tie through the snowflake and you're set!


I love fall

3:41:00 PM

I love the fall. The leaves are so beautiful and I can go out in the middle of the day because the temperature is perfect. The mountains are stunning too! The colors change daily. I love it.

Jack and I have been going on fall walks all this week. It has been a nice refreshing activity together. Jack loves to go on walks. He'll go sit in his stroller waiting to leave as soon as I tell him we're leaving.

I've gathered numerous leaves from my walks. Each so pretty and unique. Here are some darling little leaves I found beneath a weeping birch tree-

Aren't they cute?

P.S. Do you ever specifically go out of the way to step on an old fallen leaf just to hear the crunch? It is so satisfying isn't it? Sometimes, I get a little carried away and realize that anybody watching me may wonder... they've held in their laughter as far as I know. :)


a new mix of neutrals

1:22:00 PM

(left to right: Catalina bolero- Anthropologie $118.00, Ultra fine turtleneck
- Gap
$34.50, Monro wool pant- J. Crew $168.00, Cashmere muffler-
Nordstrom $78.00, Wool blend
textured sheath dress- Banana Republic
$152.00, DKNY Tweed pencil skirt- Macy's $99.00
Have you noticed that grey is popping up all over the place? Well, it seems to be the new neutral.

I remember when I went back to New York City for the fashion tour- we went to CAUS and they gave us previews of upcoming seasons and the colors predicted for them. I remember looking at the palette of colors for women 2009-2010 and thinking, "There is no brown!"

Nope, there was none of that rich dark chocolate brown which happened to be my favorite color at the time. I asked about it and was told that brown was on its way out and greys were moving in as the star neutral.

Well, here we are, a year and a half later and there's about 10 times more grey being sold in the stores than brown. But that doesn't mean you can't wear the classic brown you've been sporting for the past few years. Just mix it. "Mix brown and grey?" You may say. "Yes," is my response. Here's how:

1. Use color! Bold and bright color will give the eye something to focus on, leaving the brown and grey as the background neutrals.

2. Try using more contrast: light grey with dark brown and dark grey with light brown.

3. Spread the "accent" neutral around. For example, if you're wearing brown pants, accent it with a grey belt AND hat or scarf or hairpiece or shoes. If you've got two of something, it will unify the look instead of seeming accidental.

Here's another one just for fun:

Just a note: Lest you think I really shop at all these places, most of these items are just things I would dream about. sigh... I do window shop at these places. If you know me, you know I don't actually dress this stylishly.

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