Some Fast Makeovers

So, in preparation of some family visitors, I decided to make the stairs down to the lower level a little more fresh and nice.  That really is a nice way to put it.  The stairs were the original "working" stairs meant to be covered with long fiber carpeting. Being the allergic family that we are, we do as little of the porous fibers that we can. So, not carpeted stairways.  So, how does one make utility stairs look nice? Be Crafty! 

I had the thought to decoupage some great paper I had found, but did not hat enough to do all of the stairs. So, we set out to find some more.  We went to our neighborhood Hobby Lobby. No such luck.  But I did find a darn near perfect match to the paper.  Only it was even better!  It was fabric! It is way more durable than paper would be, and no matching prints!  Yay!

So, the rises all got a fresh coat of white paint for a nice even base.  When the paint had dried overnight I was ready to decoupage the fabric on.  I measured each strip of fabric and cut then slapped on the Modge-Podge and stuck the fabric on.  Once all the fabric was smoothed, I slathered on some more decoupage.

The treads also got a little face-lift.  With wood grain contact paper!  Then a layer of Clear contact paper for durability.  I think they look FANTASTIC!  And they are totally me! Pink, graphic and a bit "peek-a-boo-ish". Here is the finished project:
When the real treads go in, the rises will have to be replaced also, and I will be disappointed to see them go...

I also wanted to let my bestie, Hollie and her family, Ginger and her family, and also their brother and sister and their families, and their mother Kaye and family that our thoughts and prayers are with them today.  And that I love you!


A Craft Fail. Sort of.

I have a daughter who has recently shown herself to be an undercover Disney Merchandising Agent.  You see, we thought that she just loved those Disney Princesses.  I had learned to strategically avoid the toy department at most retailers. But then, whenever we were in line at the grocery store she would spot them on the bottom shelf - all the way from the cart. Et-cetera, Et-cetera.
Well, lately, it seems that Disney Princesses get spotted EVERYWHERE.  And I do mean everywhere. For example, today in the canned vegetables isle; I hear the "Princess Shriek".  Sure enough I turn to look at what the Dearest (and nearest) Princess is getting all excited about.  Sure enough, there is one of those naughty isle scammers... And it was Disney Princess Finger Press-On Nails... in miniature. Ugh. And really there is no "trading" items to get out of buying those.  The stuff is like "crack-for-toddlers", I swear! So, its buy them or drag her out screaming at the top of her lungs like I'm trying to abduct her.. Gotta love a 3 year old. And Disney Merchandisers. The stuff is everywhere.
Anyway, AuBrynne Loves homemade clothing.  And she loves when I put a Disney Princess iron-on if at all possible.  So, when I say them clearanced at Joann's for less than $1, I had to treat her to a summer tunic. 
Well, because I did not measure her, I thought I would just rely on an old (1 month) pattern.  Well guess what? Its too short.  Too short to wear off the beach....


But just try getting it off the girl.  I dare ya!  So, tonight, it is pajamas.  If I can get it off of her in the morning, it will get a cute little ruffle to make it several inches longer. I swear, she's going to be a WNBA player. Or an OlympicVolleyball player...
At any rate, the iron-on is this month's favorite Princess, Belle.  I added some cute hotfix rhinestones in Canary and Fuscia for a little bling.

A Frock By Friday

Check out this lovely Tutorial Series from Grosgrain called :  A Frock By Friday . It is a great way to get your feet wet if you are afraid to delve into sewing a dress for yourself without the use of a store bought pattern!


Clock Make-Over

Today, among a load of errands, I was able to re-do this wall clock that I had found at Walmart in a clearance bin for a a whole $1.99. It matched the color of the Plum that was to be the color of my room.  But I have not gotten to painting it.  So, I thought I would re-do it to finally get the decor in AuBrynne's room closer to finished.  It started outlike this:
With a couple of sheets of paper cut with a fabulous Cricut and some extra pearl stickers and plastic rhinestones; I was able to get it disassembled and put back together to look like this:

So, the next few projects are going to be getting AuBrynne's room finally together... Ya know she's 3.  So, its probably time before she decides to tell me its not what she wants.


Ombre Manicure

So, I have figured out a really good method for the at home manicure that lasts a whole week.  Its more or less a "Sandwich" method. I use a product called Sticky made by Creative. An enamal color and then Super Shiney also by Creative.  The trick to this is to use THIN coats. If you wait at least 6 minutes between each coat, you can do it 20 minutes before bed and not have any sheet marks in the morning. It goes like this:
1: Stickey
2: Color
3: Stickey
4: Color
5: Stickey
6: Super Shiney
7: Spray Solar Spray Quick Dry
8: Drop of Solar Nail Cutical Oil on each cuticle
Generally at this point, I run my finger tips under the coldest tap water I can stand for a minute.

This week I did what my mother called an Ombre Manicure.  I used OPI Pompeii Purple and on the tips I used OPI Designer Series Coronation. It turned out pretty neat!


The Ex-Boyfriend T-shirt Dress

So, I have had this shirt for several years.  It was an ex-boyfriends shirt that was left at my place.  I had always looked at it and thought, "Hmmm... I REALLY could totally make something cute with this...." However, I still used it to paint and do other messy jobs in [crazy]. So, the other day, I got that urge to actually do it. You know how that goes.  When you get the inspiration, you have to act or it will be another 6 years in the closet... 
I am very bad about taking before photos, so, Sorry. No before pic.  But what I can say is that what is now the front of the dress was previously the back of the shirt.  I added the white band and ruffles with cotton/spandex knit that was similar enough to the original fabric, albeit less faded.  I also added with that same fabric and some 1.5 inch elastic; a shelf bra.  And because I made the shelf bra, it actually holds my girls.
Upon sending my father a quick cell-phone pic I thought he would ask when his Number 6 jacket would be finished, but he actually said my Uncle Homer would appreciate the dress. Do with that what you will... LOL-I love you Uncle Homer...
AuBrynne said, "Oooh! Princess Mommie Dress!!" And she used my favorite of her new words, "You look GORGEOUS!"
So yay! Its now something to wear out and about this summer if it will just warm up!


Allie Made Her First YouTube Video!

This was really just an experiment, but it is a cute one! I wanted to see just how easy it is to make videos from the droid phone and upload them to the site. It is probably even easier than the unabbreviated version I did, but I stuck my feet in the water! And it was good!  So I will probably do more videos in the future!


Mommie Shirt Refashioning

AuBrynne LOVES to wear my shirts.  So, one of the thing that is fun and inspiring to do, is to re-fashion them into pint-sized clothing.  This little dress was actually a long-sleeved v-neck shirt of mine.  I added a little red for accent. The white underneath is actually AuBrynne's very own fashion sense popping up.  You see, today she actually ha a white dress that my gramma sent for her.  A decided she wanted to wear both dresses. This was the INSPIRED result:

Still working on Mommie things, but they are not camera ready. So, a little more time.


Kids Grow Too Fast

Ok.  SO, AuBrynne's Super Stripey Fun Dress was made  exactly 2 months ago.  Since then, she has grown. And I mean, GROWN. 3 inches according to the wall marker! What's a mom to do? Add a ruffle! Then she's not apt to flash the grandmas at the grocery store.  And really, what little girls dress would not be cuter without more ruffles?

I am also working on a few things for the mommie type. Hopefully, I can get those up soon! 
 'Till next time!

I'm Linking this here:



Today, we were able to catch Martha's show.  She made blender Hollandaise sauce for Eggs Benedict.  It looked like it would come out pretty good, and  wanted to see if AuBrynne would like it. You see, she likes eggs every day.  I can get her to eat oatmeal for breakfast about 3 times a week.  But she prefers eggs. We will save the how specific she is about those eggs for another time, but, lets just say this: she is very specific - just ask gramma about bouncy eggs...
So, we checked our supplies:
Eggs - Check!
Course Salt - Check!
Warm Water - Check!
Unsalted Butter - Check!
Freshly Squeezed Lemon - Ah, Organic bottled? Sure.
English Muffin - Nope. Whole grain bread. Fine.
Canadian Bacon - How I wish. But organic sausage patties... Will work for our purposes.
Really she's 3....

Anyways, the method is to poach two eggs, toast two slices of bread and warm the sausage patties. While the eggs are poaching, melt a stick of butter. In your blender add your two eggs yolks, 3/4 tsp of coarse salt, 1Tbls lemon juice and 1 Tbls Warm water. Start the blender and then with a very thin stream of the butter, poar it into the running blender.  Slowely, untill it is all blended together. Let it blend for a few more moments until it starts to thicken. Voila! It's ready! I poached my egg a little softer, because I like my eggs a litle runnier.  But AuBrynne asked for "Mister Bunny" eggs (Easter Bunny Eggs), so, I poached hers further to solid.  She really liked this easy Hollandaise sauce.  We will call this version AuBrynne's Mister Bunny Egg Breakfast.


How to Clean Up Crayon and Marker and other stuff

So, it's not exactly what I'm making today.  It's more of what I'm cleaning today. Anybody who has a 3 year old. Or has had a 3 year old in their home, knows the [joy of] cleaning up crayon and or markers. Off Everything. It can be frustrating to see great art freshly applied to the walls you took hours to get painted just so.  But there are some really quick and easy remedies to the artistic moments...
I use 3 products pretty exclusively, aside from soap and water.  They are:
1: Plain Alcohol - For marker removal.  This works FABULOUS of Sharpie and all other permanent markers.  Especially on plastic items.
2: WD-40 - For crayon removal. Works like magic.
3: Hydrogen Peroxide - For protein stain removal from clothing.  Mostly on cotton items.  But test other fabrics for safety.

I have a Mixed Media Artist in my home, so I usually have to employ these in certain orders.  Take for instance, today.  The artist got it into her pretty little head that she could draw play companions onto the wall if they could not actually be here for a visit. She used various crayons, markers, sharpies, and colored pencils to make them "come alive".  So, after taking some fast acting Ibuprophen for the beginning of a headache, began a systematic search for all creative extentions of the artists' brain. In this case it was enough to fill this bucket:

Now, given the other crafting supplies I also found, and the board books she used as place holders for those crafting supplies, I know she has stashed more, so I know there will be more art to come.  But I digress...

Grab 4 clean rags.  2 for the pink walls and 2 for the brown walls. 1 rag for each wall color will be for the WD-40 use and the other 2 rags will be for the Alcohol use.

Open a window and or set up a fan.

Begin with the WD-40 for the crayon.  Spray it liberally on the crayon art.  Let it sit for a moment. Long enough to get all the crayon covered.  Take your rag and rub.  It should come off like magic.  Sometimes, you have to make a second pass. And in rare occurances, you will have to make a 3rd pass. 
Now, you will have a wall that looks as though you rubbed oil onto it. You have.  You can take a lightly soaped rag and wash then wash with a clean wet rag. It will dry in moments completely clean.
But if you have marker to clean up, you need to clean it up second.
Begin by taking your other clean rag and saturating it in a bowl of alcohol.  It should be very wet. Start my just pressing the rag onto the marker. DO NOT SCRUB or RUB. You will notice after a several seconds the marker will start to run down the wall.  This is what you want. This will be the size of the area you will work in. When it starts to run, Move back to the first spot you started with and LIGHTLY wipe away the ink. If you work in light strokes, you will remove less paint.  If you still see resedue of marker, start again with saturating the rag and letting it soak into the marker.  The longer the permanent marker has been there, the more patience and attempts will be neccessary to remove it. 
Sometimes, you can't get marker off completely.  And  you might be tempted to just paint over it.  If you don't clean the marker first, it will seep through your paint in a few days and still be there.  So, clean it with the alcohol as much as you can, THEN paint.  The alcohol will stop it from coming through. 

Now, if you have a proeien stain from skinned knees or even dinner messes, they can be cleaned with Hydrogen Peroxide.  Just pour a good enough amount to let it sit saturated on the stained area.  You will see it bubble. Rinse then repeat till stain is gone. Wash in the washing machine as normal.  What happens is the peroxide cells get in between the fibers of the garment. They infuse themeselves into the protein cells and swell, in basic terms, they burst, inhibiting the protien from staining the fibers.  I had a neighbor friend growing up who worked as an orthadontal assisstant. She would come home with various dental "spatters"... She would soak her clothes and have no problems getting them completely clean.  I was amazed way back then... No need for fancy, expensive stain fighters, that really just use the same basic items plus some glycerin to make it seem more potant than regular alcohol or peroxide.

Anyways, Until next time.


AuBrynne's Easter Dresses

AuBrynne's Easter Dresses have become a tradition for me. I have made them. Well, I didn't make the first one. Mostly because one of my favorite friends, Hollie was visiting and I didn't want to be at the sewing machine while she was here.  But since then, I have taken great pleasure in making really girly dresses for the "Little Princess" as she has been calling herself lately.

This was year one, AuBrynne was 4 and a half months old:

This was the next years dress and new walker Easter walking shoe...:

This was last years dress:

And this was this years dress and now jeweled crown...

I will post more on the details and techniques on these dresses at a later date.  If there are other things you would like to see, please let me know in the comments section.  I love comments!