Wednesday, April 21, 2010

How I Met My House Party!

Over at Our Suburban Cottage is a charming party on how you came to live in your home. I love this idea! So, I'm joining the fun!

My husband and I married only 2 months after I graduated high school. Yes, I was 18 when we married. So for our one year anniversary, me working two jobs, him working full time and going to school full time, we decided it was time to move from our shoe box sized apartment (1bed/1bath about 500 sqft!) and look into buying a little starter home. We looked at several places and liked a few. We put in an offer on one house and it fell through. Then about a week after the offer failed on one house, our realtor showed us a house that, of course, was at the very top of our price range. We both fell in love! It was a 4bed/2bath house, huge lot, great upgrades and the sellers where motivated! We put in an offer, the lowest we thought we could, and they denied it. I was heart broken! We had already envisioned our soon to be children growing up in that house, having a dog in the backyard, the whole nine yards. So we continued to look, but nothing was as good as that wonderful house. Then the seller's realtor called our realtor and asked if we were still interested in buying the house. Of course we were! So they gave us the terms in which they would accept our offer and we made it right then and there! Our dreams were finally coming true! But, the seller's, who gave us the terms, made it very clear as to what they would settle for, we did everything they asked for, denied our offer! WHAT?!!!! Again, heart broken, we started thinking that maybe it was not a good idea for us to buy right then and we started looking for bigger apartments.

Suddenly, our realtor called us and said he knew of a listing just down the road from the dream house, that was priced way lower than the dream house, had one less bedroom than the other, but just as big of a lot and no one living behind us. We went to see it and instantly fell in love. The moment we walked in, it felt like home. We made an offer right then and there as the house was not technically on the market until the next day. So we were first! And we finally got our home.

It needed a few cosmetic things as the previous owner loved the color pink... as you can tell... (yes the house is pink with blue trim.) There are no words to describe. Made it easy to give directions to our house during daylight! "Just turn left and look for the pink house. Yep, that's us!" (Its green now with white trim, just don't have any pictures of it and its probably going to change in the next year.)
She painted this horrible purple wall, which is now our chocolate brown wall.
And LOVED wallpaper borders! It was in every single room! And it wasn't just borders, it was pink flower borders! But other than that, the house was almost spotless.
It was so funny to move from such a small apartment to a 3 bedroom house! It was so empty in there when we first moved it. Now, is a completely different story! After living here for 6 years and we now have 2 children... we're bursting at the seams!

I still walk past the other house all the time and still dream about it, but over the years we have seen the siding fall off, the shingles ripped off the roof from the prairie winds and a lot of things fall apart around that house, so I am so thankful that we got this house and have not had anything bad happen... knock on wood... since we bought it. What a blessing to own your own home. Its the home both of my kids have come home from the hospital to, its where our story really started. I love it.

Now head on over and read more stories like mine and join the fun!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

A Conundrum

Nothing really crafty today, finishing a few hat orders right now. I need some advice. We are in the process of cleaning out the 3rd bedroom and moving one of the kids over so they each have their own room. The only problem with this room is that it is completely separate from the other two rooms, on the other side of the house. This scares me tremendously, however, we are slowly outgrowing this 3 bed/2 bath house and the kids have more... dare I say "crap" than their little room can carry anymore. It's literally bursting at the seams!

So, I need some advice from you mom's. Do I move my 3 year old daughter over to the new room, redecorate it for her, but risk her getting woken up by the heater/water heater that is on the other side of the closet? And also, do I risk her potty training at night to come to a screeching halt because the closest bathroom is on the other side of the house?

Or do I move my tank of a 1 year old, that sleeps through everything, and doesn't have as much "stuff" as his sister? The only draw back to this situation is if he moves over then I have two rooms to redecorate. Now, normally this would be my dream come true, however with our finances the way they are, it would have to be on a very tight budget (which could be fun) but would take longer to accomplish.

My husband and I are a little lost in this department and I am thinking all of you are so wonderful and give great advice. What would you do?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Dinosaur Peasant Shirt Tutorial

This tutorial doesn't have as many pictures due to the fact that I was so frustrated with my serger and sewing machine that I forgot to take pictures of the entire process. So I hope you will bear with me.

* Plain crew neck shirt (Got mine at Walmart in the boy's section for $3.00. I would also recommend you get a size larger as the elastic and cutting make it a little small.)
* 1/4" Elastic
* Bias Tape in the same color as the shirt, or similar.
(Supplies for Applique:)
* Contrasting cotton fabric
* Fusible Interfacing
* Thread
* Stitch Witchery, or clear nail polish.

I then went over to Little Blue Boo and used her Reverse Applique Tutorial along with her downloadable pattern for the T-Rex head. I was super happy with the results and even squealed a bit when I was done with it!
I then folded the shirt in half and cut the collar and the sleeves off, like so...
Now, this is where I didn't do a good job in taking pictures, but I took my serger and serged around the collar and each sleeve with a rolled hem stitch.

Then I took some bias tape, in white, and pinned it about a half inch under the serged hem, with the folds of the bias tape up against the inside of the shirt.

Then I stitched along the top and the bottom of the bias tape, trying to keep as close to the edge as I could get, leaving your ends open to put the elastic through.

Now, measure around the arm and collar of your little one (or yourself, this can easily be made into an adult shirt) and cut the correct length in 1/4" elastic.

Take your safety pin and snake the elastic in between the shirt and the bias tape. Stitch the ends of the elastic together, then stitch your bias tape closed as well.
Here is the end result. The best picture I could find as she is being a stinker in not wanting to pose for yet another creation her mom wants her to model. The nerve! I also stitched a little bow at the top of the dinosaur's head, to make it a little extra girlie. But I am so happy with it!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Homemade Light Fixture

Hi ladies! I have returned from my dungeon of crafts for my daughter's birthday. It was lots of fun, but I am sure glad its over. As a slight distraction from my busy weeks, I decided to make a new addition to our kitchen. My sister-in-law had mentioned a few years ago about seeing a light made out of a colander and for some reason that idea stuck with me. So, one day while shopping at TJ Maxx, I spotted a mini colander, squealed, and picked out the red one (because you all know about my obsession with red). It was $5.99! SCORE!!!! I then gave the vision to my husband and sent him to work. (Don't you just love how you can do that?!) Any hoo. Here's the process.

Items You'll Need:
* Colander
* Swag Light Kit w/ chain
* Canopy Kit

Step 1.
Drill into your colander, if you need to, so your light kit can fit through the holes. Luckily, this one didn't take much, and if was in the right place, so a small hole had to be made.

Step 2.
Following the directions on your kit, hook your wires onto your light socket.
Step 3.
Clip the end of the wire off and use your wire splicers to leave the wire exposed.
Step 4.
Snake your wire through the center hole of your colander. Then using the bolts and screws given in your kit, secure your light socket to your colander.
Step. 5
Find someone with some electrical experience and have them handle the actual hanging of the light. I do not have that experience so I can't give any advice. I just held onto the tools and made sure the kids didn't eat any of the parts we needed. Pretty important job I think!
And TA DA!!! Here is the end result. Its so pretty and gives off the perfect amount of light. I now need to make a new valance for that window because it just doesn't work too well together. But that will be another post!


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