Monday, December 26, 2011

The nose knows

When I was 7 I had my ears pierced. It looked cute and I had a few pairs of earrings.  Within about 6 months I started to get horrid cysts in my ears, I had to let the holes close up.  10 years later I got them pierced again, same problem.
I've always thought about getting my nose or eyebrow pierced.  I didn't think tweezing or threading would work too well with a piercing.  This past Friday while looking at a webpage for a threading place I noticed they did piercing (place full of Indian women).
I took the plunge and got a nose stud.  I chose the left side for traditional reasons.
"In India the outside of the left is the preferred position of the piercing as this is supposed to make childbirth easier. This is because Ayurvedic medicine associates this location with the female reproductive organs.""

Monday, December 19, 2011

Therapy/ABA

Today was Garrett's first day of ABA (Advanced Behavioral Analysis). In talking to his therapist I realized how far he's come in just under a year.
He spent the session  pointing up a storm and even responding to my "commands". He looked at me when I said his name and interacted with me and his therapist.

Wednesday he has another evaluation. I'm so glad he's getting services down here. Garrett is making such strides.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

What should I craft?

Lately I'm at a loss for what I should craft.
I was hoping to get some commissions and that would give me things to post...


so my readers, suggest something to me.
Things have been so busy here I know my blog hasn't been getting as much attention.  That isn't always bad because I've been doing so much stuff.  I should start taking pictures of what I'm making for dinner. 


Tuesday night I have an Autism support group and I'll post about that.  Garrett hasn't started with EI services here yet. He's been doing a lot better lately with pointing and letting us know what he wants.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Dreaming of an iPad

A friend showed me her iPad the other day and I'm in love. With all the cooking I've been doing lately it would be so much easier to have an iPad in the kitchen rather than my laptop.
It would also save so much in paper when it comes to sewing patterns. No more printing out patterns because I can just bring the iPad to the sewing machine. Or even with me when it comes to knitting projects.

Sadly with the move and all our expenses $500 is just too much. I'm doing my best to save money, I'm trying to take some commissions whenever I can get them.  I'm also asking family members to just give me money for the holidays.  
For any of you who haven't joined Swagbucks yet if you click my link on the right hand side I get a referral bonus which I can use to get myself some Amazon.com giftcards. 


Working on lots of projects for the holidays so I'm hoping to have some more crafting things up. 


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Writer's Workshop - Love Letter to my Keurig

Dear Keurig,
I pass you during the day, but I don't say anything to you. You don't even notice me. Why would you with your sleek and sexy curves. The alluring aroma you produce. I so drawn to you. I can't bear to see anyone else touch you.
I mean it when I say I would leave my husband for you and have your little coffee babies.  You require so little clean up and only ask for water every now and then. 

I know what you want, I know what you need. And I need you. We could be great together.
I mean it when I say I would leave my husband for you and have your little coffee babies.  You require so little clean up and only ask for water every now and then. 

Love,
teawithfrodo

PS: I'm considering changing my name to coffeewithfrodo just for you.



Check out Mama's Losin' It for other awesome writing prompts.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sometimes I just want a little girl to dress

When I see all the cute fabrics for girls and the great dress patterns it makes me wonder if I want a little girl (no, I'm fine with one child).
Because I get to make little girly dresses for friends and family.   I've been wanting to try my hand at a simple pillow case dress.  A friend asked if any of her crafty friends would be willing to donate items for a giveaway she was doing for families of people serving overseas.
I jumped at the chance to sew AND do a good deed.  She even brought me some fabric, it was a wonderful pink, orange and yellow sarong.  It wanted to be a dress for a little girl.
It was simple, easy and when they outgrow the dress they can wear it as a top.    Now I'm tempted to go make one for myself.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Baby needs some new clothes

Garrett has a mini-Cabbage Patch Kid that he calls "baby". (One of these days we will get him to call her by the name she came with, Julia Honor.)
She came with this adorable little nightgown. She also came with normal looking hair. 
Garrett loves her and will drag her around by her hair.  Last week he decided to dunk her in the toilet which meant we had to throw her in the machine to wash her. 

I had been meaning to make her some clothing but this was the kick in the pants I needed. I had to throw away the disposable diaper she came in because I couldn't get it back on her after she had been washed. 
I found a really simple tutorial.  I made some adjustments because "baby" is a fairly small CPK.

I could barely get her away from Garrett long enough to get her dressed and take a picture.  It's such a cute little outfit.  I know Garrett wouldn't care if she was naked but I enjoy the little project.



Thursday, November 3, 2011

Chair cushions

What was I making all that bias tape for?
Cushions!
I love our new set, but alas, no cushions

Our new dining room chairs have a hard seat and it made my butt hurt. The solution was easy, find a pattern and make some cushions.  I couldn't decide which fabric I wanted to use so I decided to make mine double sided so I could switch them over if I wanted a change. I used a third fabric for the piping and ties that matched the 2 main fabrics I chose.
The green and yellow are the 2 main fabrics. I used the raspberry as an accent

They're super stuffed and you can tell which chair I've been sitting on. I need to swap out my chairs to squish down the other cushions.
My butt is comfy now.
 I'm really happy with the way they came out. They're comfy and completely washable. 

Monday, October 31, 2011

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Drop something...please!



Yeah, we had McDonald's. We had just gotten home from our Autism support group meeting

Monday, October 24, 2011

What is she making?

My social calendar has been pretty full down here. The good thing is I've been busy, the bad is that I haven't had much time for crafting.
This weekend was spent making bias tape and piping.  I'm still not sure I have enough.
The bias tape maker certainly makes it easier



I'm hoping to get this project done before the end of the week. It's a simple project, the piping is just time consuming to make. But it looks much better and more interesting than store bought.

 
so much piping

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Cotton!

Recently Ben was asked by his co-workers if he had done any "stupid Northern tricks". Ben remarked that he got all excited when he saw the cotton fields.
Me, I hadn't done anything at that point that could have been considered a Northern thing.  Until this weekend (and I still say it was more of a crafting thing that a Northern thing).  We drove by fields upon fields of cotton and we noticed that there was a lot of cotton on the side of the road. It had blown off the plants and was just sitting there.  I wondered what completely natural cotton felt like so Ben slowed the car down and I leaned out and grabbed a piece.

The touch, the feel of cotton.

It was really soft and cotton dust went in to the air when I pulled it apart. I removed a couple seeds (and realized why they had slaves do it...ouch!).  We later found out that they don't care if you pick it up off the side of the road as long as you don't pick it off the plant itself.  

If I had space to spin (and learned to do so) I'd go with a bag and pick it up and spin it in to yarn. It would be amazing to dye.  Maybe in the future when we own our home again I'll have more space.
 

Monday, October 17, 2011

An upcoming craft

yes, there will be a craft soon.  I promise.
Our new place is finally unpacked and set up.

I admit I'm liking it down here more than I thought I would.  Garrett and I have had quite a busy social calendar. Friday he has his evaluation with Early Intervention and I'm looking forward to getting him back into his therapy. 



Wednesday, October 5, 2011

So. many. boxes.

Last night I had a nightmare that I was being chased by rabid moving boxes that were trying to eat me.  Taking a look at the living room you can see why.

That black thing on the wall is actually right above a fireplace so you can get an idea of just how much is in the living room right now.

The craft room is even worse.  It is floor to ceiling with boxes and I can't even get in the door to take a picture.

I can't wait until we are all unpacked and can eat at home again.

Friday, September 30, 2011

The waiting game

we made it down to Memphis.  We got our internet hooked up today...

Now we're waiting for the rest of our things to arrive. We've been told they'll be here Tuesday which isn't bad because they said 7-14 days for the truck to get down here.  I guess tipping the guys well made them want to get to us first :)

It will be nice once all our stuff is here an unpacked.  Until then it's really hard to type with a laptop balanced on my feet.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What every sewing room needs

A pressing table!
Space is limited in my sewing area. I don't even have a full sized ironing board. When I want to iron I take my mini board and put it on the dining room table, while the condo isn't huge it was still a pain in the butt to drag my sewing out to the table and plug in the iron.


I found a a website where a woman had used a TV tray to make a pressing table.  I needed this for my sewing room.  I found a TV tray at Target for under $10, the fabric and batting I already had.  It took less than 30 minutes and I had my own collapsing pressing table. 
My own pressing table right by my sewing table

I love it, it fits perfectly by my sewing table when I need it and folds up when I don't. I'm thinking of maybe getting a pain pen and adding some designs to the legs just to make it a little more funky and personalized. Even without the extra touch it's perfect for my space.

it's a small space but it's mine
Of course I wrote this before I knew I was moving to Memphis. I'm looking forwards to having a larger craft space and many new projects

Friday, September 16, 2011

A little bit of Memphis

I was bad and didn't really take many pictures in Memphis.  We drove by Graceland, and yes, it really is in the ghetto. 
Most of the time was spent looking at apartment complexes.  We luckily found one we love only 5 miles from where Ben will be working. Instead of getting another car we decided to get a scooter.
Honda nhx110
I already told Ben that I plan to borrow it for short trips to the store. I'm also planning on Mod Podging my helmet. There will be a ton of crafting and home decor posts once we start to get settled in and I'm really excited about that.



Here's the most out of place thing in Memphis.  This pyramid looks like it belongs in Vegas.



This is the town square that is right by Ben's workplace. I'm in love with with old fashioned service station and gas pumps.



 Fresh Sushi and Deli...this was at the BP.  And I thought the Dunking Donuts/Sushi place in Boston was odd.



We're looking forward to being back down in Memphis. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Back from Memphis

we did indeed make it back from Memphis safely. Our last 2 weeks in Boston are going to be a blur.
I plan to post a bit about Memphis when I have a few spare moments.

I'm still looking for guest blogs to help me out while all this is going on.  If you'd like to write a guest blog let me know.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Guest Post - DIY Sugar Scrub by @miriyap

Hello, I’m @miriyap on twitter and I’m here to help @teawithfrodo out by doing a guest blog post while she is spelunking the wilds of TN!  I’ve recently discovered the joy of DIY, from homemade laundry detergent to sewing my own cloth grocery tote bags for shopping (better than paper or plastic, right?).  Not only does it save money in these difficult economic times, but there is a certain sense of satisfaction to be derived in using something you made yourself (a least for me)!

Today I will be sharing an easy peasy DIY facial sugar scrub recipe with you.  The recipe is courtesy of @58andGrace (who runs a lovely etsy shop http://www.etsy.com/shop/58andGrace) and she swears by it!  So here we go!

Easy Peasy DIY Sugar Scrub Recipe

Ingredients:

--1/3 cup of oil (extra virgin olive oil, or combine natural oils easily found in local health food stores to 1/3 cup)




In a mixing bowl, combine the following:

--1 cup light brown sugar
--1 cup dark brown sugar
--1/4 cup Sugar in the Raw (Cane Sugar)
--2 tbs vanilla extract 
--1 tbs cinnamon 
--1 tsp Pumpkin Spice



Pour in the oil.





Mix well and voila!






Done!  I divided the mix equally into half-pint canning jars, and you can decorate with your own label or tie a pretty ribbon around the jar (I didn’t beribbon my jars because I’m crap at tying bows).

They make great gifts!


--------------------------------------------------------------
@miriyap is a freelance graphic designer who spends way too much time on twitter. She has a Hubby & two kids.  She loves to read, sew and shout filthy invectives at her friends.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

No, he's not shy. He just doesn't talk.

I'm not really worried that Garrett doesn't say much.  I'm more worried about his general communication. We're working on getting him to point at things he wants and make eye contact when he wants something.

I guess this is too much for some people. We were at a store the other day and I was holding Garrett. He didn't want to wave at the cashier and wanted to be put down to run around. I said he doesn't talk much.  Her response was "oh, does he not talk because he's shy?" At this point I trying not to laugh because my kid is so far from shy it's hilarious. "No" I said "He doesn't talk much because he's Autistic and has delayed speech."

She got very quiet at that point. I wasn't snarky in my answer but I guess people aren't expecting to hear that. He's Autistic, so what? Does that make him less adorable? Does it make him less amazing? Not at all. I wonder why people ask if they don't want to hear the answer. If it bothered me I wouldn't have said anything  but it isn't something I think we should be ashamed of.

Some people say "oh, I know someone with Autism" while others get very uncomfortable. The truth is that for us we don't feel a need to keep it a secret. I find it more annoying for some stranger to try and force a "hi" out of Garrett when he isn't interested in them. 

Garrett is getting a ton of help and has been making huge strides. I swear I cried last month when he pointed at a banana he wanted to eat. He puts his toys away and even has a few words. Last week he started to do the hand movements for the itsy bitsy spider. 

He's our little guy and we love him to pieces.
 And he sure can rock out on those drums!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Memphis here we come! - Looking for guest bloggers

Tomorrow we fly to Memphis to look at places to live.  I have never been to Memphis before so our scouting trip will be my first one.
I'm sure I'll take a ton of pictures while we are there.


I'm also looking for some guest bloggers since the move has been taking most of my brain power from me. If you have a blog idea feel free to send me an email with what you'd like to write about.  Crafts, cancer, parenting, you name it I've probably discussed it here.

I want to try and write a bit about the move once we get back from our trip this week. It's never easy to move, let alone several states away where we don't know anyone. Plus we're doing it with a toddler and a dog. 


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Check out my guest post

Since we just found out that we don't have to pack anything (the moving company does it all for us) I thought it might be a good idea to write a guest post.

I'm guest posting over at The Angel Forever talking a little but about my BRCA 2 mutation.
Go check it out.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Because you ottoman

It was ugly and poop brown, but it was free on Freecycle.  It had potential and I knew I could make something really cute out of it.


I started by taking it apart.  I took all the staples out of fabric and found the foam was still in good shape.


The drawer was out of alignment so I popped it back in place and added some glue to keep it there.

Once the glue was dry I took everything out to the yard and spray painted it white. I used an all in one spray and did 2 coats.  Since both the boys were sleeping when I did this I didn't get any pictures of this step.



Next I took the brown fabric and laid it out on top of my new fabric.  The brown fabric had 3 pieces but my fabric was wide enough to just cut the shape in one piece.

I sewed up the corners and put it on top of the foam piece.  Then I stapled the underside of the fabric to the ottoman.  This was a 2 person job, I held the fabric while Ben did the staples so again I have no pictures of this step.

I took the top and glued it back on the base so it didn't slide around.  Gorilla glue is great for this.

I love how it looks now.  Fun and bright.  I also love the fabric. It's perfectly tacky but ads the right amount of color.  


If I knew I could sell these things I'd keep refinishing furniture, but we're running out of room for things.  Which really sucks because I saw a great gossip bench at Goodwill that I really wanted to fix up.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Holy Cow!

Forgive me if I don't post as much for a while.  Ben got a job in Memphis, Tennessee so we will be moving.
It's exciting and scary at the same time. This is a good thing for us. It's a company Ben can stay with for a long time and Memphis is a lovely place to set down some roots.

The next month will be filled with all sorts of moving things.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Going Green saves you Green!

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle has become my mommy mantra.
About 4 months in to my pregnancy I decided I wanted to cloth diaper. I had never really liked the smell of disposables (and those who know me know of my insanely strong sense of smell) and cloth came in so many cute colors.  Ben wasn't quite on board until I showed him how much money we'd save by using cloth.  Since we're using One Size diapers we've never had to buy more and have saved about $100 a month for 2 years (after the initial $500 investment).

Not everyone can cloth diaper, if we didn't have a washer/dryer in our home I don't think we would have done it either.  Never fear, there are so many other ways to go green and save yourself money.

Just do one thing, just this one thing and you will save a ton of money and make less waste.  Swap out disposable for reusable. 
Instead of disposable cups and utensils for the family use ones you can wash and reuse again.  You pay a little more for the permanent items (and sometimes there isn't a huge price difference) but it lasts much longer and you don't have to keep buying new items. 

Ziploc bags are useful but I hate having to toss them.  I started making my own snack bags with fabric and PUL, they're easily cleaned and I can chose the fabric.
simple PUL snack bag

If you don't want a soft snack bag you can find snack containers just about anywhere, Target usually sells them in their $1 spot (I could live in that section alone) and they are very sturdy.
If you can't get around using a Ziploc bag don't assume you need to throw it away when you are done.  You can wash and reuse them over and over again.


With the rising cost of everything these days it makes sense to go green.  Not just for the environment but for your wallet.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

An Official Diagnosis

We've known for some time now that Garrett was on the spectrum. It's been so evident to those who spend time with him. While he's a bright and sweet kid he's got delays. 
It's hard to get an official diagnosis, it takes time and you have to get it through a behavioral therapist. However Ben is interviewing in Memphis next week and we decided that we need to speed up the process.  Since we don't know where we are going and what programs there will be we wanted to get his official diagnosis so he would qualify for services anywhere.


Yesterday we answered a ton of questions. I was in tears by the time we were done because while I know he's made so much progress these last 6 months I still had to go through all the ways he was lacking. 
Today she evaluated Garrett. He said a new word (Baby) but really didn't communicate with her very well. He received a diagnosis of PDD-NOS(Pervasive Developmental Disorder- Not otherwise specified). 
While he shows signs of it being Aspergers children can't be diagnosed that way until they are at least 4. 

We do hope by that point we can reverse his diagnosis. He already had 6 hours of therapies a week and we're hoping to add another 8 to that.


Garrett is still our amazing little guy and we love him no matter what.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Stencil me in...for AWESOME!

My newest love is doing freezer paper stencils. They are super simple and you don't need lots of tools to do it.  Who knew freezer paper was this useful?
Can you tell what this is?

I've made Garrett several stencil shirts so far and I'm always looking for more stencil pictures and ideas.  You can make the pattern as simple or complex as you want.
They're great for gifts and so easy to personalize.  How cute would it be as an accent on jeans?  Am I crazy over stencils? Yes, yes I am.  And being so easy to do you'll go crazy over freezer paper stencils too.
it's a Death Star!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Thoughts after watching Toddlers and Tiaras

Oh man I am glad I have a boy! 
What the hell is wrong with these parents, what are they trying to compensate for?

And then I wondered, there are so many of these girls who just don't want to be doing those pageants, one in particular wanted to be an Olympic gymnast but her mother wanted her to be in pageants. But why would the parents really want to force the children to do this.  If they're having fun that's great, but the cost of the outfits, fake tanning your child, the fake teeth, it just doesn't set a good example.  The fierce tantrums these girls have is rather disturbing. Then there was the mother who said she keeps her daughter motivated with Cheetos and sugar cubes.  Wait, really?  Didn't you just tell her she was getting too fat? It's a child not a horse. Food as motivation just generally disturbs me.

One of the girls won 1st runner up out of about 15 girls (this was the one who wanted to be an Olympic gymnast) and she was happy with how well she did.  Her mother on the other hand was not too happy with her.

In the long run how much damage are they really doing to these children? Every time I watch the show I think about "Little Miss Sunshine" (great movie) and how much pressure we put on children.
Before I do things for Garrett I remind myself that I'm doing them for him and not me. I worry that some of these parents forget that. Ben and I have discussed at length that if he is involved with something and turns around and tells us he doesn't like it anymore we aren't going to force him to stick with it (I'm talking extra curricular things and not something like not doing homework).

I guess this is why we rarely watch the show.  Garrett likes watching shows with other children. He seems more interested in the girls at the beginning than the ones who are all "glitzed" up.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Super simple fabric business card case

Try saying that 5 times fast. Go ahead, I'll wait.
I love projects that use up my scraps and remnants I have left over from other projects. It took less than 10 minutes.

What you'll need:
Fabric.  My piece was 10 1/2 inches  x 5 inches and fits standard business cards.
An iron (optional but it makes it easier)
Thread, coordinating or contrasting depending on the look you are going for.
Velcro or snaps (optional)
If your fabric isn't already the right size start by cutting a piece 10 1/2 inches wide by 5 inches high. 
I did my best to center the pattern

Next I ironed creases in to my fabric.  You don't have to do this part but it made it easier.
Short sides
fold the short sides in 1/8 inch and press.  Then fold an additional 2 inches in and press.
Folded in again

On the long side you'll fold the fabric 1/8 inch and press.

Long sides

Now you're up to the sewing part.  Unfold the short sides leaving the 1/8 inch piece still folded in and stitch.

Fold the short sides at the 2 inch crease. Making sure the long sides are still folded down, sew along the long edges. This will secure both of the pockets.
Make sure to keep everything folded in



All done! Yes, it's that simple.
My cards fit in here nicely
It has plenty of space for my cards as well as the cards I get from other people. 
If you want to add some extra flair you can do some applique, embroidery or a decorative stitch around the edges.
You can always add some Velcro or snaps to keep it closed but I loved the way it felt without a bulky snap. It fits in my bag or slides neatly in to my pocket without looking bumpy. Since it's cute you always want to give out business cards just to show off the case.