Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Burp Cloths With Bound Edges

I just love burp cloths.  They are so wonderful to have around the house & in your diaper bag.  I love that they are there just ready to clean up all the spit up messes & baby drool.  A stack of fresh new burp cloths just makes me happy.

I also love the look of quilt binding.  I think it gives a quilt such a nice finished look.  So with fabrics that I had on hand, I made up these burp cloths with a white flannel backing  & a patterned fabric front.  Then I did a quick binding around the edge in a contrasting fabric.  

I love them.  And I just love making something super useful & good looking from materials that I already have around.  

This is the same sort of binding method that I used, but instead of hand stitching the back side (which I usually do on quilts...looks so amazing!) I just pinned it back & machine stitched.  I told you it was a "quick binding"!

Now my only problem is that I need way more than 3 burp cloths.  :)

Monday, August 29, 2011

Ten Dollar Advertising Sale

I've decided to continue offering 150 pixel by 150 pixel ad spots on my sidebar for only $10 for the month of September.  Ten bucks! 

Next month is baby month, so it will be an exciting month for our family.  I have some really great guest bloggers lined up to post during the time that I'll be busy, you know, having a baby.  And of course I'll be popping in to update you on the new little guy & how our lives will be changing.  It will be an awesome month!

E-mail me at SparklePowerCandace@gmail.com to snag a spot for your website or shop!

Back to School

First day of second grade.
She laid her outfit out the night before.
Colorful tights & sparkly shoes.
She was up early feeling excited & happy.
Wanted her hair curled & in a pony tail.
Hot, hot, hot!
I think it's going to take an hour for me to cool off after that drop off.
I cried a little behind my sunglasses.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Saturday Song

Dylan let me sleep in this morning & I got a total of about 11 hours of sleep last night. I'm already feeling better. :) Here's to a good weekend!

Friday, August 26, 2011

36 Weeks

I'm done.  Seriously.  Can you tell by my face?  Today was a particularly grumpy morning.  The girls flipped out crying & bellyaching when I asked them to get dressed so that we could go run an errand.  Serious hardcore bratty style.  It made me mad!  All they want to do is watch TV or play games on the computer.  I've been tired + lazy & have been letting them indulge more than I should & because of it they have turned into little terrors at times. 

Really they are not that terrible, my sweet little girls...we are all just over the summer.  Temperatures have been so high around here.  Over 110 degrees for the past week or so.  Sure makes for a grumpy 9 months pregnant lady.  I have to remember that affects the kids too.  We are just worn out & you know what.  It's okay to just take it slow these last few days of summer break.

Good news is that Sadie starts back at school on Monday.  I'm so excited for her.  I feel bad that she has to go to school when it's still over 100 degrees out, but better than sitting around the house because it's too hot to go out.  I want to just squeeze her & tell her to stop growing up so fast!  By the way, her other front tooth fell out last week.  I never knew that I could love a toothless smile so much!

So I'm at 36 weeks now with the pregnancy.  I found out at my doctor appointment earlier this week that I am dilated to a 4 & 70% effaced.  This is totally strange for me.  Not at all consistent with my last two pregnancies.  I was dying with pain when I was at a 4 with Claire.  That's the point that I couldn't think I could do it anymore & asked for an epidural. 

We have 3 more weeks until my scheduled repeat c-section.  I know it is entirely possible that I could stay at a 4 until then.  Still I keep wondering if I'll go into labor before that.  So that's added a bit of anxiety.  I'm concerned about getting everything ready, the house cleaned & all projects finished in case he decides to come early. 

Because we don't have a closet for the baby, we created a little wardrobe out of a bookshelf.  Now this genius idea is not mine.  Rachel at Smile and Wave created a really awesome retro cool one for her son.  I knew that this would be the perfect solution for us & so affordable too!

Just need to get the crib bumper sewn.  I washed the fabric for that project yesterday, so we're ready to go whenever my energy level permits.  :)

Last night I had an emotional breakdown.  I couldn't hold back the tears.  I think I told Dylan that I couldn't do this any longer.  I don't really remember feeling like this with any other pregnancy.  I just want to feel better.  I want my old body back & my energy!

Then I have moments almost daily when I think about holding this little baby in my arms & every single time I cry.  I just cannot hold back the emotion.  I feel like I've waited a lifetime for this baby to be here with me.  The waiting has gone on long before the start of this pregnancy.  It is just so special.  So then I decide not to think about how I feel physically because in the end it is worth it & I would gladly go through even more hard times just to have this baby.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Older Sibling Gift Bags & Free Big Sister/Big Brother Button Download

Last week I shared a guest post over on the Kiki Creates blog for her Baby Week.  In case you missed it, I thought I'd share the whole post over here too.  :)

I am currently sporting a big round belly & chubby face because I am 36 weeks pregnant with my 3rd baby.  I have two cute daughters & we are expecting a baby boy next month!  I'm really looking forward to that day when my girls come visit me in the hospital to meet our new baby.  I want it to be a special day for them & I don't want them to feel left out or overlooked, so I've created some older sibling buttons for them.  They are super easy to make & guess what?!!  You can download them for free at this link & make your own!

Once you have the file downloaded & printed out, just cut out the badge around the black circle.

I found these self-sealing laminating pouches at Target.  You simply open them up & place your paper circle in the middle then press to seal.

Trim around the edge about an 1/8th of an inch from the edge of the paper.

Finally, you hot glue a pin on the back & you're done!

I pinned mine to a little bag that I made & filled with goodies.  When the girls come to the hospital to visit, they'll each have their own bag waiting for them.  They can take the Big Sister pin off & pin it to their shirts if they want.

I have c-sections, so I know that I'll be in the hospital for about 4 days.  I wanted to include some things to keep them busy & some things to help them to know that their mama still loves them & misses them.

I included in my bag: a sweet little note from me, some watercolor paints, a handmade cloud softie that they can snuggle up to when I'm not there to snuggle with, a new movie to watch, a new book to read, an activity book, a lollipop & a bag of candy.

You may wish to also include stickers, gel pens or markers & learning books, a new toy or some family photographs.

I really love the Lily & Thistle MiniMe paper dolls.  My girls already have these & play with them all the time, but they would be an excellent addition to an older sibling bag for either a girl or a boy.

Also, If you want to add a little something soft & snuggly to the bag, but are not the sewing type, these Custom Wee Babies from Red Comb Vintage are just adorable.

I feel this is a wonderful way to help older siblings feel appreciated & help them through the transition of bringing home a new baby.  What would you add to an older sibling bag?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Baby Shower

Last weekend my mom, my 4 sisters & 2 of my sister in laws threw me the most adorable baby shower.  I chose the colors & they did such an awesome job decorating with hanging balloons, flag garlands, fringe garlands & cute table settings.

The food was delicious!  We had tasty chicken salad sandwiches on croissants, veggies & fruit.  Then there were so many yummy treats including homemade cream puffs, oreo balls, vanilla cupcakes & oreo cheesecakes.

I can't believe how weird my body looks when I'm sitting down...all scrunched up.  Dylan & I just laugh daily at my bigness.   What else can you do?  Anyway, see all those gifts?  This baby boy is totally set with clothes thanks to all my sweet friends.  I'm a lucky mama.

I love this photo of 3 pregnant girls chatting it up.  I think I spent the entire party with a plate in my hand, just eating & talking.  That's why I didn't take any photos myself.  I'm seriously bummed that I didn't get a photo with all of the sweet girls that threw the party for me.  They are the best.  I loved this party & it is still just so amazing to me that I have a baby in my belly that we get to celebrate.  I am so blessed.  :)

All photos by Heather Abbott

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Saturday Song

Sharing another Langhorne Slim song with you today because I super love him.  Seriously, pick up any one of his albums & you will not be disappointed.

Hope you are having a fun weekend.  I am in super nesting mode & am getting as much done as I can as long as my energy holds up.  :)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Guest Posting at Kiki Creates Today

I'm guest posting over at Kiki Creates today for 'Oh Baby' week!  Go check out my post on older sibling bags & free download for 'Big Sister' & 'Big Brother' buttons that you can make yourself!  :)

Found: Vintage Linens

Check out my stack of fabrics from this week's thrift stop.

Remember how I said that I was on the lookout for really colorful vintage sheets?   Well, I was so excited to find this yellow floral in a king size.  The pink floral is a print that I have loved for so long but have never been lucky enough to find, until now!!  So happy I stopped to thrift for that purchase alone!  Yay!!

The brown floral is a tablecloth that I just adore.  The colors are prefect!  It looks to have a few grease stains on it.  We'll see how well it washes up to see if it remains a tablecloth or gets cut up for fabric. 

The pink floral in the middle is some fabric yardage.  I don't even know what the fabric content is.  It's a bit fuzzy.  I feel that it's destined to become the most lovely tote bag though & I could not leave it behind. 

Now, I am not a fan of purple.  But I was so drawn to this purple floral fabric yardage & I think it would make a lovely tote bag or apron.  Yep.  :)

If you enjoy looking at vintage sheeting fabric as much as I do, be sure to check out Jeni's blog, flickr & etsy shop.  I just love to see her weekly finds. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Aqua, Orange, Yellow, Grey

I've listed a few fabric flag garlands in the shop today.  These were made for my baby shower this past weekend which had a color scheme of aqua blue, orange, yellow & grey.  I'm just loving this color combination.  It feels both soothing & vibrant at the same time.  I kept one garland to hang over baby boy's crib & the remaining are up for grabs in the shop.

These ones are only $18 because I did the quicky sewing method of trimming the flag edges with pinking shears instead of enclosing the seam inside the flag like I usually do.

And speaking of my baby shower, it was fabulous!  But I took absolutely no photos!!!  I was too busy visiting with all the lovely guests & enjoying all the fun games & yummy food.  I'm hoping that my sisters got some photos that I can share with you all later. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Diaper & Wipes Holder

I'm just about a month out from having this baby & I'm feeling anxious about completing everything on my 'to-do before baby arrives' list.  My focus has been on producing as much product as I can for the shop before I naturally take a bit of a break from it when the baby is born.  With back to school shopping & new baby items, I feel the need to make the most of the little bit of time I have left to make money.  And because of my efforts, the shop has been doing well.  Which makes me feel really great.

Still there's something pulling me to want to make cute little things for my baby.  Like if I don't do it now, I'll miss this opportunity to make, make, make in anticipation of my new little soft bundle of love that will be here in no time.  In no time!

So even though I sold out of all of the Vintage Mix Cloth Napkins in the shop, instead of working on a new batch, I sewed up a little diaper & wipes holder.  I was tired last night & it was a quick, easy project.  I went to bed feeling satisfied that I had sewn something cute + useful for myself.

I loved these diaper keepers that Anna of Noodlehead made recently, so I also used Diary of a Quilter's tutorial.  It was so easy to make & will definitely come in handy in keeping diapers from getting all mangled in my bag.  They'll be all neat & in their place & ready to be quickly grabbed when needed.  I think that I need at least one more of these, just to assure that I have one available for whatever bag I want to carry.

Speaking of bags...Look how nicely the holder coordinates with my diaper bag.  By the way, I won this Skip Hop diaper bag in a blog giveaway some months ago.  I love blog giveaways.  My theory is that you can't win if you don't enter & so I take a few seconds to enter every blog giveaway I come across that I'd like to win.  Why not enter, right?  You never know!  In the end I've won quite a few awesome prizes from giveaways on blogs. 

Speaking of giveaways...I am giving away a La La Love You Print in the color of the winners choice over on the Sparkle Power Facebook page right now.  Want to enter?  Just head over there & look for the giveaway post.  Simply tell me what color combination is inspiring you these days & you're entered!  I draw a winner tomorrow, so hurry!

Anyway, I'm happy with my little completed project.  I'm telling myself to relax & work in whatever direction I'm moved to.  Whatever gets done gets done, right?  :)

Monday, August 08, 2011

Good Food Weekend

Oh we had some great food this weekend.  I'm still feeling all happy & satisfied about it.  My favorite was these Cobb Salad Sandwiches.   Oh my goodness.  Sooooooo good.

We also had these Slow Cooker Green Chili Pork Tacos.  I love a good crock pot recipe.  Dylan is super picky about anything that comes out of the slow cooker & he loved these.

And lastly, I had to try these S'mores Cookies.  They are pretty darn tasty & best eaten completely cooled. 

Have you tried any good new recipes lately?

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Thrifting Report: Vintage Linens

After organizing my fabric a few months back & realizing that I had way, way too much, I decided to put myself on a shopping ban.  I put a hold on any thrift shopping for sheets & felt proud of myself for saving that money & for using what I had on hand for all of my projects.  Although because I have such a big stash, it wasn't hard at all to use what was around. 

Well, that itch to thrift has come back & I've felt that my fabric collection can really use some more colorful sheets.  So I've allowed myself to start shopping again.  Yesterday was a quick stop into the Savers near my doctor's office, which I've only recently discovered was there.  I could have been shopping there every month!!

I first started in the material section & found this blue and red plaid that I couldn't pass up.  I'm sure I can find a use for it. 

I found some orange & yellow pillowcases.  These are the types of prints that I'm looking for.  I love to find prints that are mainly colored rather than a small print on a mostly white background.  These colorful sheets add more pop to my projects.

I did, however find some white background florals that I just couldn't pass up.   They are pretty & would make a lovely quilt backings.

And lastly, this green stripe....I already have one of these sheets on hand.  But it was so bright & in such great condition & such a great price that I couldn't leave it there.  And this one is a king size too!  I don't think I'll ever run out of this green stripe.  Too bad it wasn't pink or blue.  I'm always on the lookout for those colors.  The stripes & plaids are always really great to pair with vintage florals in my sewing projects.  They really add so much.

I'm thinking that I may need to start selling some of my vintage sheeting fabrics by the yard in the shop.  That way I can keep some for myself & still have room to store my stash!  I really never will get to using them all in my lifetime.  I just can't stop the hobby of searching them out & buying them.  It's too much fun.  :)

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Esty Shop Stats

Okay my fellow etsy sellers.  Are you as obsessed with the new Shop Stats feature as I am? 

I'm really loving it.  It's hard for me to not check it at least once a day.

The monthly view is my favorite way to track all my stats.  Above is a shot of my shop stats from last month.  I blurred out my total revenue, but everything else is there.  :)

It shows you how many views, favorites & orders your shop has received during that calendar month as well as the revenue you've earned.  All through the month of July, I would check to see how my monthly revenue was measuring up to the previous month.  I had hoped to at least meet the previous months sales, but really wanted to exceed them.  When the month was over, I was happy to see that I had exceeded June sales by $140!  And I know that the shop stats was totally a motivating factor for that.

The graph part shows you the dollar amount of sales per day, which can be either really exciting or really depressing.  :)  And now they've just added the cute little pink triangles at the bottom of the graph that show you how many new listings you added on that particular day.

The shop stats page also shows you the top traffic sources for your shop as well as the top keywords that people are searching to get to your shop.

Overall it is a great tool for etsy sellers & like I mentioned before a great motivator.  :)  Are any of you using it as a motivator to keep up your productivity & listings?
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