the Tracey

I had a friend ask if I would sew a purse for her, and that expanded a bit to some other orders! The newest addition to my shop is ‘the Tracey’.

‘the Tracey’ is custom made to order for $35 (but the one pictured here is ready to ship for $30). It is customizable and the way I made this one is with the lining fabric matching the flower fabric and the interior pocket fabric matching the main fabric. That awesome flower pin can be repositioned or removed so you can do it however you want!

The pocket on this one I made to split into two so that one side is smaller (my cell fits perfectly) and the other side is larger. There is also a magnetic clasp to hold all your junk necessities inside.

The strap fits comfortably over your shoulder and is what I consider to be the perfect length. But I guess everyone has their own preference!

‘the Tracey’ is made with a tutorial I found over on pinterest. It is a little pricey and I don’t recommend it for beginners. It is easy enough for a beginner to sew if you have the know how regarding basic sewing technique (seam allowances, turning fabrics, backstitching, etc.) There are several details that I found missing from the tutorial that would be necessary for a beginner. 

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Pinspired for Baby

When I realized that I had done absolutely nothing to get ready for baby, I suddenly panicked and for some reason turned to my sewing machine.  The kids and I went to the fabric store and I let them help pick out some fabric for our baby and some for my sister’s baby. I know new babies get bombarded with blankets, but I wanted some special from me.

I had pinned a post from delia creates on some sweet and simple swaddling blankets and since I had just been gifted a hand me down serger that I had no idea how to use (I had no idea how to use any serger for that matter) it seemed like a perfect easy project to start with.

Can you tell Miracle picked this one?

I love flannel receiving blankets, but most of them are so tiny. These are such a great size! And I am pleased to say I mostly figured out my serger. Axel picked out some fabric for Auntie Amber’s baby too, but I forgot to take a picture of that one. I highly recommend this quick, easy and inexpensive project. They make excellent baby gifts!

I love this fabric!

I had another Pin for an embellished minky blanket from the fiCkle piCkle. Originally I was drawn to the embellished aspect of the blanket, but when it came time to add them I changed my mind. I was afraid of possible choking hazards and I didn’t want them to get in the way of coziness.

I normally would never have chosen this fabric, but I love it so much!

This is another simple project and great baby gift. Once again, I love the size and I tested the snuggle factor on my other kiddos. These blankets are fantastic. The minky can be a bit tricky to work with, but just take your time measuring and pinning and you will be fine. Also, make sure you buy the minky on sale or with a coupon or it can get pricy.

I loved the first one so much I had to make a second!

Of course I made one for my sister too. I wanted the babies to be matching so I used the same green minky. Then for a matching onesie, I cut out one of the rectangles from the flannel fabric and stitched it on. I also cut out some of the flowers from baby girls flannel and stitched it on a onesie for her. LOVE!

Possibly my new 'go-to' baby gift!

Pinspired Reviews – Cooking Edition

I am so excited that I have been able to find a couple new South Beach Diet recipes on Pinterest. I was eager to try out a couple new ones from my South Beach board.

As a huge deviled eggs fan and a huge avocado fan these Avocado Deviled Eggs were something I just couldn’t pass up.

Avocado Deviled Eggs (and photo) from Eating Well... Living Thin~er

No tips or adjustments here. Just yumminess. Andrew and I chowed them down and the kids liked them too. We ran out of avocado so then I made some deviled eggs by simply mixing the yolks with Laughing Cow cheese and the kids chowed those too.

The other pinspired recipe I tried recently came from the need to make sure Andrew had something to eat at our church pot luck. The theme was “hot-dish competition” and so I figured it wouldn’t be a very South Beach Diet friendly meal. I searched and found Ham and Cauliflower Casserole au Gratin.

Ham and Cauliflower Casserole au Gratin (and photo) from Kalyn's Kitchen

I love Kalyn’s Kitchen and I have been super impressed with almost every recipe I have found over there! I was so nervous about how the casserole would go over, but my husband and I loved it as did the others that I heard who tried it so I will definitely be making this one again.

Pinspired Reviews- Baking Edition

Why hasn’t anyone been giving me a hard time for not letting you know what my weekly pinspired activity has been? Haha! You mean your life doesn’t revolve around my blog and…. me? Well, just so you know, I have been doing my self-required weekly Pinterest activity. I won’t overwhelm you all at once, so today you get my reviews of some baking I did from recipes found on my Pinterest cooking and baking board.

I was in charge of desserts for Easter and I thought this recipe for Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cupcakes would go over well with the kids.

Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cupcakes (and photo) from BS in the Kitchen

I didn’t have a ton of time and my big cupcake pan is in storage. So instead of doing them 6 at a time I decided to just make it into a cake. I did an eight inch double layer and it was delicious! The frosting calls for a lot of vanilla extract, but I don’t mind (although Sarah, I owe you a new bottle!).

A couple tips/ adjustments I made… I didn’t use the butter flavoring in the frosting. There is already a ton of butter in the recipe and I didn’t have any nor have I ever so I didn’t want to make the purchase for the one teaspoon called for. I also found the frosting to be super thick so in the end I added some regular milk. I think if I make this again I may try and just use milk instead of opening up a whole can of condensed milk just for this. And make sure you get the cereal crumbs super tiny or you will end up with some soggy cereal chunks in your frosting that are a little questionable when you bite one.

I decided that this would be the perfect dessert or side for a brunch and I brought the leftovers to our Easter breakfast at church and they cleaned it up. Delicious!

The other dessert I baked was this Chocolate Chip Cookie Delight. Oh. My. Goodness.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Delight (and photo) from Taste of Home

I did not have any leftovers of this one. It was so delicious. Andrew has been pretty strict about no sugar lately, but he has requested that I make this again in a couple weeks so that he can have some. I didn’t put nuts on top (I did chocolate powder instead) just because I wasn’t sure if everyone would like the nuts. I think they would be delicious though. The only tip I have is to make sure you have time to chill it properly so it doesn’t get too runny. Oh, and I did read in the reviews to take caution not to over-bake the cookie because it will get too hard to cut. I almost was afraid it was going to be too doughy but I’m so glad I took their advice. Not only was it easier to cut, but I think the softer cookie made the overall dessert better.

What have you been baking lately? I’m always up for some great recipes!

Appropriate Title

Around our house we have a pile of old half flattened pillows. The kids use them for movie nights to make little pillow beds on the floor but I really just want to throw them all out. Enter Pinterest. I found a tutorial for making pillow mattresses. How could this not be the most perfect idea ever for my kids!

The tutorial comes from No Rest for the Creative, which is a perfectly appropriate title for my week last week trying to get these  made.  I originally came across her tutorial for the same thing only using knit fabric, but I really liked the idea of using cotton better.

They took me forever to make because I was being a super perfectionist, but I think you need to be if you want it to look nice! There is a lot of measuring long fabrics, sewing long seams and smoothing out and lining up. Not to mention my preggo belly kept getting in the way and crawling around on the floor all hours of the night didn’t do much for my pregnancy induced reflux. I could only work while the kids were sleeping, because they were gifts.

I found some perfect pillows at Wal-Mart for $3.97 each. You could go even cheaper at $2.50 for Standard pillows from Wal-Mart or even $.99 from Ikea, but Andrew encouraged me to get nice pillows since I put all the time into making them. The $3.97 pillows were technically Jumbo size but they weren’t stuffed full so they fit into the opening perfectly. (Ok, it took a little work to get them in, but they are so cozy and look great.) I adjusted the tutorial a bit so that Axel and Miracle’s mattresses each had 5 pillows in them. I looked like a bit of a crazy lady purchasing 14 pillows! I had two carts full.

I love that you can fold the top pillow under to prop up the top of the mattress. Axel even realized that if you roll the top three pillows it works as a perfect chair for gaming or sitting up to eat a snack.

Five pillows was a bit excessive for Miracle, but at least it will grow with her! I also found another tutorial from Southern Disposition on Pinterest that looked way simpler, but the finished look wasn’t as polished. Also, the way I did it was cheaper. But look at this cute idea for how to set up the same bed that we already have! Right now Miracle sleeps on top and Evangeline underneath, but hopefully that will change soon…

Princess Fort Bed Idea from Southern Disposition

The pillow mattresses are getting used like crazy which makes me super thrilled especially after all the time and love I put into them. Now I’m off to throw away a bunch of old half flat pillows… or maybe I’ll search Pinterest for some ideas of what to do with them! Have you been Pinspired lately?

Pinspired

Pinspired. That is what I’ve decided to call my weekly Pinterest inspired project. I really have loved finding so many fun things to do, and I’m so excited about how many I’ve done. Today’s post never even made it to my boards before I tried it! I found out around 1:00 yesterday that I wouldn’t have anyone baking for youth group that night. I wasn’t too worried because we have a little stash of store bought cookies that I could use, and I wasn’t feeling up to baking myself. I had just sat down for my naptime Pinterest fix and saw this recipe for Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars from The Girl Who Ate Everything. The pin description caught my eye because it said they were made using a yellow cake mix, and I just happened to have an extra one (and no frosting to go with it) so it seemed perfect. (On the subject of pin descriptions…. leave them! I am so much more likely to look at something if there is a quick note saying what it is and why it’s neat enough to be pinned.)

Now, put chocolate and peanut butter together and you are a winner in my eyes! Add in the fact that these bars were so simple to make… It just took a few minutes and I didn’t even need to get out the mixer. My kids loved them, and they were gone in seconds at youth group.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

You can find more yummy looking ideas on my Cooking and Baking board. I’m pretty picky about what I pin, and only post things I actually think I will do someday. I want to keep it clean so I don’t get overwhelmed and partake in reckless pinning.

Have you been Pinspired? I would love to see your projects!

Lego Birthday Party- Food Edition

We really had a blast at Axel’s Lego themed birthday party. It was so him and I loved adding all the little details. He was so excited about each part of it which made everything even more fun. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much all at once so I’m splitting it into two parts. Today… the FOOD!

Axel decided he wanted to have supper at the party and determined that pizza would be best, so that was easy. For drinks I was inspired by this pin and made ice cubes that were supposed to be rectangular… like Legos. Andrew thought that was stretching it a bit, but I think it fit the theme just fine! I used Kool-Aid packets and mixed them using  half the sugar and half the water so that they would be super concentrated in color and flavor. If I do it again though I would use 3/4 the sugar because they were a little bitter. We then poured Sierra Mist over them and the kids loved it! When their soda was gone they crushed the ice with their spoons and added a little more soda to make slushies.

Yellow Red and Blue Lego Ice Cubes

I also had pinned these cute Lego cookies and wanted to give them a try. I found this recipe for sugar cookie bars and decided to combine the two. They were pretty tasty, although I wish I had made the frosting darker. I just used regular vanilla frosting and added food coloring, but I actually ran out of red so they are kind of lighter than the theme. Oh well!

For the cake I wanted to use this idea but I just didn’t like the idea of using giant marshmallows (it just didn’t work in my brain). Instead I baked one cake in a regular rectangular cake pan. I cut it in half, and then I cut one of the halves in half. So I ended up with one square cake and two smaller rectangular cakes… Make sense? Then I took 8 cupcakes and cut the tops off (Andrew had no problem helping me eat the tops) and put the bottom of the cupcake on the cake and frosted them. Four cupcakes on the square cake and two on each of the rectangle cakes. I forgot to take pictures of the smaller ones though. I frosted one yellow, one blue, and one red.

And last but not least… the juice boxes. I saw this cute idea on Etsy, and it was pretty simple to do myself. I took the straws off the juice boxes, wrapped them in blue wrapping paper (just like you would a gift) and then taped the straws back on to the back of the box. Don’t forget to mark where the hole is for the straw! Then I cut out two circles for each juice box out of the wrapping and affixed them to the front of the juice box using 3-D foam pop-up circles.

 

The kids thought they were pretty neat. I also found this post with a free printable for your juice boxes if you prefer.

That wraps up the food edition! Coming soon… invites, decor and more! haha.

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