Saturday, July 31, 2010

Quick & Healthy Toddler Meal

My wonderful neighbor brought over a Pilipino noodle dish today called pancit. I grew up with my friend’s mother feeding me well on pancit and lumpia. Anyway, I digress. I figured the kiddo would eat some, but not a whole meal of it. So I got to thinking. I wanted him to have carrots, then he started talking about rice so I came up with a good way to cook them all quickly.

I started with the following:

5-7 fresh baby carrots halved and sliced

1/4 cup(ish) of frozen peas

Minute Rice Brown Rice

I boiled the carrots for about 15 minutes until they were a little soft. I stuck them in the freezer to cool off. Then, thinking about all of the good nutrients that was leftover in the water, I used that to cook the rice. It was already boiling so it cut the rice cooking time in half. When the rice was done, I added the carrots and frozen peas. The peas were warmed by the hot rice and in turn cooled the rice down to toddler temp! Didn’t think of this first thing, but you could cook it all in low sodium chicken broth for more flavor and add already cooked chicken to the rice too.

This may be a duh kind of thing and you are thinking “It took her this long to figure this out?” But I was pretty proud of the healthy, quick meal I made for him when he wasn’t going to be eating the same thing as we are at dinner. He really scarfed it too!

Friday, July 30, 2010

I'm Connected Baby!

Whew! After a half a day, a neglected child (he thought so at least), three discs shoved into my husband's PS3 by said neglected child, a frantic web search to find a out how to get the discs out, the father of a 2 year old who wrote about the solution, saving the PS3 & my butt and a tech savy friend, I have finally opened and connected to a Twitter and Facebook page for my Homemade Hodgepodge. Whew again!
You have given me so much love on my blog, won't you show the same love to my other accounts? Shhhh, don't tell anyone but I will be doing my first three give aways to my followers when each reaches 100 followers. Oh what the heck...tell the world! Tell a friend, tell a friend of a friend! I will make it worth your while!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Picture Frame Coat Rack

I have been desperate for a place, in my laundry room, to put my purse, diaper bag, keys..and the list goes on and on. We enter and exit the house through that room and straight into the kitchen where everything seems to get dumped. I looked for simple racks, but the cheapest I found was around $20 and ugly. So my little brain started spinning and here is what I came up with.

Supplies you will need

A piece of board about 12”x 24” (Home Depot will cut them for you for a reasonable fee, I think the first cut is free)

Two picture frames (dollar store)

Spray paint

Velcro with adhesive (not shown woops)

Coat hooks (I used 5)

Heavy picture hanging hardware (woops again)

Embellishment of choice ( I used my Cricut machine, Sure Cuts A Lot and white vinyl)


Before you begin, apply the hanging hardware to the back of the board.

Spray paint your board with a few coats of spray paint and let dry. I used about 3-4 coats to get good coverage.

Measure and make placement marks on the board where you want your frames.


Do the same for your coat hooks.


Measure the back of your frame on one side and cut strips of Velcro accordingly.


Remove the backing from one side and apply a strip of Velcro to each side of your frame. Make sure your Velcro doesn’t get in the way of inserting pictures. (It is kind of hard to tell in this picture, but I have Velcro strips on the right and left sides of the frame)


Remove the backing from the other side of the Velcro and place it on your board, where you have measured,using firm pressure.


When both frames are in place you can add your embellishment to the open areas, staying clear of the placement marks you made for your hooks. (I put my initial in the middle of the frames and a cute saying above the hooks. You don’t have to have a Cricut to do lettering, a simple stencil will work great.)


Screw your coat hooks into the board where you have made your placement marks.

Remove the frames from the board and add pictures. You can update your pics anytime you want to with your removable frames!


For half the cost of the ugly, boring coat hooks found in the store, you can create a beautiful rack that you don’t have to hide!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Dear Kiddo #3

Dear Kiddo,
How amazing and resilient you are. I have thrown your whole world upside down for the past two weeks and today you bounced back into your routine just like it was never interupted. You have been constantly entertained by Grammy for the last two weeks and I really thought you were going to continue to need that attention after she left. Nope, today we went about our day, me cleaning and you playing with your toys and destroying what I just cleaned. But that is ok, you were being so good and not making that big of a mess. Even when I had a major hissy fit today, you were so concerned like such a sweet boy.

Thank you for such a good day and being such an awesome kiddo!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tile Coasters

I came across the tutorial for some awesome and super easy tile coasters at Blueprint Crafts via the Ucreate website. I am extremely happy with the results. I also shared the craft with some friends who were equally happy with theirs. We all agreed that they would make fantastic gifts. Check out my version!


Imagine tying a ribbon around these babies and giving them as a gift!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Back in the Saddle

I haven't had a ton of stuff with my mom-in-law in town and VBS going on, but I am getting back on the wagon with my version of a cute craft I found on Ucreate. I love this site by the way. You should check it out. I will tell you all about it tomorrow.

Anyway, on to what I did today besides running all over Northern California. I drove for about an hour from SF east and the temp changed over 30 degrees. Crazy!

I submitted one of my very first blogged projects, crib sheet drawer pulls, to the Iron Crafter Competition over at Fireflies and Jellybeans. Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Words of Wisdom #4

What a busy week! VBS has been keeping me hoppin’! But I am having so fun feeding my drama side. Aaaaarrrggghhh! OK, on to the words. I promise I will have some more crafty goodies next week.

These words of wisdom are from the great Theodor Seuss Geisel. Also, known as Dr. Seuss.

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind."

"You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams." (Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww)

Sigh, I love people who can say what I am feeling better than I can.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Kid’s Room Organizers

My son doesn’t have a ton of stuff in his room, but the few toys and books he does have are always all over the place. Amazing how just a few toys can make the room look so cluttered. So, lemme show you what I did.

Took a trip to Michaels and picked up a few unfinished crates and some letters and doodads.

Painted the letters and doodads and stuck ‘em on with my handy dandy Gorilla Glue. Those suckers aren’t going anywhere.

Another idea is to decoupage with scrapbook paper that matches the room theme or trimmed down crib sheets that you used for this project.



These can be used for your kiddo’s room, craft room, bathroom, laundry room..and the list goes on and on….

Linked to:

HookingupwithHoHgiveaways PonyTails and FishScales

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Here they aaaarrrgggghhh!

Whew, I am going to sleep good tonight. I have been doing the wave and recreating a storm tonight? What did you do? (giggle) As promised here are the pics of the pirate coat. I sewed it from a Simplicity pattern, but added the embroidered embellishments and lace inserts into the bottom. Not the best costume choice for the middle of summer but I am having a blast with all of the kiddos. I can't wait until my kiddo is old enough to join in on the fun.



Monday, July 19, 2010


I was dubbed Pirate Princess Lisa tonight by my fellow Vacation Bible Schoolers. Pictures of the sweet costume I made will be posted tomorrow. I am so into the pirate thing that I actually dreamed I was a pirate last night! I am off to my bunk to dream about more high seas adventures!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Baby Yummy

I realize my kiddo isn't a baby anymore and doesn't need soft and mushy food. However, green veggies aren't his favorite. He will eat them, but doesn't get too excited about them. That is why I am so excited about what I found today!

Plum Organics fruit and veggie blends baby food pouches!!

I tried the spinach, peas & pear with my little guy.41gnit7b9 L__SL500_AA300_PIbundle-24,TopRight,0,0_AA300_SH20_

I was pretty skeptical because one, I didn’t think the pear would mask the spinach and peas. Also, given that the pouch is squishy, I figured the kiddo would squeeze it all over himself. I tried it and you can definitely taste the spinach mixed in with the pears. While I wouldn’t eat it, the taste was a plus for me. The fact that I can taste the spinach in the food means it hasn't been processed within an inch of it's life. It may not be right for a super picky eater though.

I twisted off the cap and held it for him at first and gave it a little squeeze so he could taste it. The first thing he said was “pear”! Yay! One step in the right direction. Then I told him to suck on it (he knows how to use a straw) and he grabbed it. Here goes nothin’. I told him not to squeeze it and he gently held it by the sides while happily sucking the yummy goodness out of the pouch. The only downfall is that he was pretty upset when it was gone.

The pouches don’t need to be refrigerated and you can warm them in a bowl of hot water. They are incredibly compact and portable. You can get either fruit by itself or they have 7 fruit and veggie blends. They also sell a spoon that you can screw onto the top and squeeze out a little at a time for a baby to eat. So handy! I know that they are on sale at Babies R Us 10 for $10 right now but I am not sure how long the sale will last.

I am so happy that he likes it. I can now add another option to snack time or use it for a meal on the go paired with something a bit more solid for my toddler.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Who Said Nothing in Life is ....

Wow, so I am searching for free stuff on the Internet just because I am procrastinating...I really need to get that pirate costume finished...but there is free stuff on the Internet!!! So, I found this blog and I am so excited about all of the...yep, free stuff! I am a sucker for it. Sigh, more stuff to take up the Internet time that I allow myself every day.
The Freebie Blogger
Here are a few highlights:

Free weekend events - Williams Sonoma, Borders and Lakeshore Learning Centers all have free stuff to do this weekend.

Body Shop coupon - $5 off a $5 purchase.

Woohoo! I could spend all night checking out all of the goodies! Hey, if you know of any other good freebie sites, please leave me a comment and let me know!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Easy Washer Necklace

I know I have seen these in numerous places, but when I looked to try to link up, do you think I was able to find where? Of course not! So, if you have a tutorial for these washer necklaces, please feel free to leave me a message and I will be happy to put your link on this post.

Here's what you need:

Washer - Found at Home Depot by the screws and such, lots of sizes to choose from

Pretty silver bead


Nail Polish

I would do a step by step with pics and everything but it is pretty easy so here's how I made this one.


1. Paint the washer with the nail polish. I actually painted on a very heavy layer, more like dripping it on. If you do it on the side of the washer that is rough on the edges, it will kind of hold the polish on better. You can create patterns and swirl etc. with the nail polish brush for added pretty.

2. Let the washer sit for a good long time for the heavy coat of polish to dry. (2 hours min.)

3. Loop your ribbon through the hole in the washer and tie a knot on top.

4. Thread both ends of the ribbon through your pretty silver bead.

5. Tie it in a bow around your neck!

Tip: You can also layer different sized washers painted different colors to add dimension but be careful because they can get heavy.

Linked to:

Fingerprints on the Fridge

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Dear Kiddo #2

What an exciting weekend you have had with your Grammy, Uncle and Aunt. You have been given so much fun and attention that I don't know what I am gonna do with you when it's just the two of us again! You make me so proud when you are so well behaved around everybody, even with the twos coming right around the corner. I will say this many times in your life, but where has the time gone? I was cradling you in my arms, and you still fit, just yesterday it seems. Now, I hold you in my arms and lap with limbs dangling everywhere! I have realized that no amount of words or outside experience can prepare a mother for the absolute heart filling joy of seeing her baby grow into a giggly, smiley, running, jumping, climbing, talking and singing toddler.
Today you sang about 3/4 of your ABC song to yourself as you were playing, including the ending with a cheer for yourself after you were done. I am still dumbfounded..absolutely dumbfounded. This came with no prompting from Mommy or anything. How amazing that you absorb so much around you to use in your own way and your own time.
Sweetheart, I am amazed by you, every morning, every day and every night when I sneak into your room to watch your precious sleeping face. Thank you for choosing me to be your mommy.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Words of Wisdom

Hello everyone! What a great weekend I have had. I had my in-laws in town (I actually like my in-laws) and we have had a blast just hanging out and BBQing and eating and visiting..etc..etc. This week is going to be a busy one too. I am taking part in my church's VBS and I am going to be a pirate! If you Ebay "woman's pirate costume" all you get is "sexy pirate costume". First off, church is not a place for booty hanging out of the bottom of a costume, forget what spills out on top. Secondly, my booty has no place hanging out the bottom of a costume, let alone anything else that may be spillin' out!
So, you guessed it...I will be making my costume so we have nothin' hangin' or spillin'. That will keep me hopping this week, but I promise to post at least one crafty crafty before the week is over.

Here are a few words of wisdom for you to add to your awesome projects.

(This is one of my favorites)
"If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you." - Winnie the Pooh

"Love is friendship set on fire." - French proverb

Here's one that is not necessarily for a project, but something to ponder.

"I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing." - Socrates

Leave me a post or a link to your project using words of wisdom!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

I Won I Won!

Thanks so much to Amy from The Cheap and Choosy for choosing me to pass this award on to! This is great and it just made my day! She has some fantastic tips and ideas on making raising a family a little bit easier and less expensive.

So here are the rules:

1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you this award.

2. Share 7 things about yourself.

OK Here goes!

- I never knew how much I would love my son.

- I am an Air Force wife who enjoys the adventures involved in moving every few years.

- I have known my husband for 21 years and have been married to him for 8 of those years.

- I think the best job in the whole wide world is staying home with my little boy and taking care of my family.

- Although you can't tell by my spelling or grammar, I taught English in middle school for three years. Then, I went on to teach Drama in high school, which was the highlight of my teaching career.

- Try as I might to limit my crafting interests so as not to get overwhelmed, I have a closet full of different crafty things that I cycle through based on my current mood.

- I have only been blogging for a little while but I love the community that puts it's arms around each other to give so much support.

3. Pass this on to 15 bloggers who you have recently discovered think are fantastic in every way!
You guys inspire me!

7 Layer Studio

Fireflies and Jellybeans

Sew Much Ado

Joy's Hope

Polka Dot Chair

My Magic Mom

Crap I've Made

Creations by Kara

Someday Crafts

Everything Etsy

Toddler Awesome

Fingerprints on the Fridge

Night Owl Crafting

I'm a Lazy Mom

Design it Chic

4. Contact the new award winners and tell them what they've won!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Wedding Gift Ideas

Here are a few personalized, original ideas that you can give for a wedding gift that won’t be returned!

I love giving a personalized, not registered for, gifts for weddings and babies, but I always worry that it either won’t match or the recipient won’t like it. Sooo, here’s an idea that is a win win.

Take the sheets or bedding that your newlyweds have registered for and add a little bit of a personal touch.


Or a monogram would be cool too.

Another idea is to take a shower curtain or towels that they have registered for and get them monogrammed.

Either way, you know they are going to like them because they picked the gifts out. You just make them perty!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Covered Notebook

YAY! School’s about to be back in! Well, maybe for parents, but you can help get your kids excited about the impending homework with snazzy covered notebooks.

Supplies you will need:

Composition book or notebook

Patterned fabric

Solid fabric that coordinates with patterned fabric


Sewing machine

Measuring tape

Erasable fabric marker



1. From cover to cover around the binding or spiral of notebook. Then add 1/2”for seam allowance. (Mine measured 15 3/4”)


2. Top to bottom. Then add 1/2” for seam allowance. (Mine Measured 10 1/4”)

3. Inside the cover as deep as you want your pocket inside. Then add 1/2” for seam allowance. (I made a fairly deep pocket so my total was 7 1/2”) Tip, the deeper you make your pocket, the more you have to contort the book to put the cover on.


Cut one piece of patterned fabric that measures your cover to cover measurement by your top to bottom measurement. (Mine was 15 3/4” x 10 1/4”)

Cut two pieces of patterned fabric that measures your top to bottom measurement by your inside cover measurement. (Mine was 10 1/4”x 7 1/2”)

Cut one piece of coordinating fabric 5” by your cover to cover measurement. (Mine was 5”x 15 3/4”)


Fold 1/4” on one of the long sides of your inside pieces and press.

Fold 1” on both long sides of the coordinating fabric and press.

IMG_5856 IMG_5857

Stitch down your folds on the inside pieces and coordinating piece.

IMG_5859 IMG_5858

Pin the coordinating piece right side up to your cover piece right side up. Using an erasable fabric marker mark a line down the center of your coordinating piece.


Stitch down your line.


With right sides together, pin your inside pieces to your cover piece making sure to include your coordinating fabric on the edges.


Make 1/4” cuts to your cover piece between the inside pieces.


Flip the cover over and pin the snips down.


Sew the cover piece to the inside pieces with a 1/4” seam. Then sew the snips down as well. Trim the corners. Here is what it should look like when you are finished sewing.


Turn your cover right side out and press. Then, slide the covers of your book into the pockets.


Slip a pen into your fabric strip on the front and you are ready to take notes!

Linked to:

The Shabby Chic Cottage

Somewhat Simple

Everything Etsy

Beyond the Picket Fence

House of Hepworths

Seven Thirty Three

Trendy Treehouse

Fingerprints on the Fridge

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Words of Wisdom

Here are a few quotes that I think would make fantastic wall decals or plaques to decorate your house with.

"A baby is God's opinion that life should go on." - Carl Sandburg

"Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep." - Scott Adams

"There are flowers everywhere, for those who bother to look." - Henri Matisse

Lastly, I would like to give you a fun word to use. I have heard that if you use a word three times, in context, it will become part of your vocabulary so here is a good one for you.

snarky -adj. snide and sarcastic; usually out of irritation

Kind of random, I know but some words are just funny to me. Plus, being snarky is so much more fun than being sarcastic.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Embellished T-shirt

Here is the perfect way to dress up a plain ole t-shirt. (or cover up a spot that your sweet little boy got on your plain ole t-shirt)

What you will need:

Plain ole t-shirt

Fabric that matches the t-shirt (or fabric that you LOVE and didn’t know what to do with until now)

Heat and Bond Ultra Hold Iron-On Adhesive

Temporary spray adhesive


Cricut and SCAL or stencil or hand drawn shape, etc.

IMG_5835 IMG_5836

Begin by figuring out what size your embellishment or design will be. I used a chandelier design found here.

Cut out a piece of Heat and Bond accordingly.

Iron the Heat and Bond, paper side up, to the wrong side of your fabric. Make sure the steam is turned off on your iron and move the iron slowly across the paper until it sticks. Make sure it is completely ironed on by lifting up the edges. If the paper lifts with the iron-on still attached, go over it again with your iron.


If you are using your Cricut, separate the paper from the iron-on. This will allow the blade to cut through the fabric easier. Program the design you want. Make sure the fabric, right side up, is firmly pressed onto the cutting mat. I have had my fabric lift up if I am not very careful about smoothing it down. Now, cut away!

If you are using a stencil or hand drawn design, trace it onto the fabric and cut it out. If your design can be mirror imaged, then it is easier to draw it straight onto the paper and cut it out that way. Don’t do this with letters or they will be backwards when you iron them on. Remove the paper from the iron-on.

After your design is cut, spray a little bit of temporary adhesive on the back so it is easier to position it on your shirt. (especially if it is an intricate, ambitious design as shown below)


Place the design on your shirt where you want it. The temporary adhesive will allow you to pick up your shirt and hold it up in a mirror so you can see how it will look before committing.

Iron your design onto the shirt. I didn’t move the iron for my design because I didn’t want it to catch the edge. So I held the iron in place for about 5 seconds, lifting and moving, until I had the entire design covered. Then I moved it slowly over the entire design. Test by trying to lift edges and corners.


Viola, snazzy t-shirt!


I learned a valuable lesson with this project. If it is your first shirt and first time using your Cricut to cut out a design, start with a design that is less intricate. My machine didn’t quiet cut the design all the way out and left pieces hanging by threads. I had to go through the design and figure out where it was supposed to be attached and where to cut. Next time I try something new, I will try not to be too ambitious. (yeah right)

I used Heat and Bond Ultra Hold because I didn’t want to have to stitch around the design (especially that one). This stuff is supposed to hold without sewing so I will be washing this shirt on delicate and hanging to dry.

Linked to:

Sew Much Ado

Trendy Treehouse

Creations by Kara

Women Who Do It All

Someday Crafts

Night Owl Crafting

Saturday, July 3, 2010

New Toys

I have been considering a Cricut Expression for quite some time. I was not really serious about it because I do my scrapbooking digitally and I have a die cutter for my cardmaking. I got a bit more serious when I read about doing vinyl with it. So, a few weeks ago I started doing a bit of research and deal searching online and found one.

WOW! I can't believe I waited so long. I love this thing! However, waiting did allow me to keep my eyes out for good deals. I was checking out sales and on Craigslist when I found a local gentleman who gets the Walmart returns and refurbishes them. Sometimes there is nothing wrong with them and he sells them at a really good deal. If you know me, you know that I am a total sucker for a good deal. Well, in the end I got it for about 77% less than the full retail price.

Upon further Internet research, I found out that you can connect to your computer and cut out just about anything you can get on your computer. Wow again! There are a few programs that you can get to use this function. Among a few lesser known others, the two I looked at were The Cricut produced program and Sure Cuts A Lot. The biggest drawback for me with the Cricut produced program is that you have to purchase the cartridges to use the shapes. That was way too expensive for me. I ended up choosing a program called Sure Cuts A Lot 2 (SCAL). There is a plethora of information at Scrapping Table . I have only been fiddling with the program for a week, but I have figured out how and where to find free SVG files. The program will allow you to cut any kind of font that is on your computer as well as dingbat fonts and SVG files. I don't know what SVG stands for, but you can get a ton of them for free on the Internet. You can also get a ton of free fonts as well. Just Google it! The flower for the Butterfly Invitation and the paisleys on my shower curtain were both cut on my new toy using Sure Cuts A Lot.

So far I have figured that I can use this crafty duo for creating appliques, iron ons for do it yourself shirts, cutouts for scrapbooking or decoupage, and vinyl for car stickers, wall decals and pretty much anything that vinyl will stick to. As if that wasn't enough, Cricut has an idea message board too! More new toy projects coming soon!!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Butterfly Invitation

I am so excited to be throwing a baby shower for my cousin in August. I love, love, love to have parties!! Here is the first, in what will be many installments on the creation of her shower. She is having a girl and the theme of the shower will be butterflies and flowers.


Supplies needed: (note, I use a lot of Stampin’ Up products, but the general design makes it pretty easy to improvise)

Paper cutter

Cardstock in pink, white and brown

Coordinating patterned cardstock

Border punch

Butterfly punch

Decorative roller stamp

Pink stamp pad

Adhesive roller

The card is 5”x7”. Cut white cardstock down to 10”x7”

On the 10” side measure 2.5” from each edge and make score marks all the way down the cardstock. I use a popsicle stick and ruler. I haven’t gotten the scoring blade for my paper cutter yet. :)


Fold both sides in. With both sides folded, measure 1/4” from each edge on all four sides. Draw a line across the center of the card from corner to corner.


Now you have your cutting lines for the front of the card. Cut along the diagonals using your paper cutter.


You have the basic shape of your card, now time to decorate!

Using your border punch, punch along the short end of your brown cardstock. IMG_5783

Then, using your paper cutter, cut it out so that it is 1/4” wide. Now, cut this strip in half and you have one side of your card border. Repeat and you have the other side.


Using your adhesive, stick your new borders along the diagonals you cut from your card. I overlapped mine so the stick out over the edge. You may need to trim the edges a tiny bit, but better to have too much than not enough.


I printed the insert out on my computer using Microsoft Publisher. I cut it so that it was just slightly smaller than the 5”x7” so that it would fit into the folds of the card. Using my rolling stamper, I stamped a light pink design around the border of the insert.


Next, I used my Cricut machine and computer to create this cute little popup flower from my pink cardstock. (More on using your Cricut and computer in a later post) Any die cut flower or embellishment will work though. I punched the butterfly from the patterned cardstock and adhered it to the flower. To close the card I adhered the flower to the middle of the flaps.


Viola! All purpose butterfly card for invitations or just because!!

I linked to: