Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Dare to Design Contest

Dress Design for Shabby Apple Dresses

My sister Lauren created this entry into the Shabby Apple Dare to Design contest. We went to visit her at Auburn in September and got to go to one of her fashion design classes. It was so much fun and made me want to go back to college. I hope her design is selected!
Here's her description of the dress...
Design Inspiration:
This dress is designed for a young woman with confidence, poise, and flare. With the a-symmetrical front and fabric pattern on back, the woman wearing this dress will always make a statement.

Fabric Choices:
-With a silk bottom and cotton top this dress could be worn to a nice dinner party. Dark purples and grays would really make this dress stand out.
-Another option would be a wool top and linen bottom, making this style a more day time appropriate dress. Colors that would work for this option would be more neutral colors like browns, grays, or even a golden yellow.

confession session

Confession session comes from my sister-in-law Julie, who kept us continually laughing with her confession sessions on a family trip to Denmark. Today my confession session is that I haven't had a working oven since May. It hasn't really been too much of an issue. With a new baby and the summer months, I've only really missed it on a handful of occasions. Most of the things I would have baked in the oven anyway would have been full of fat and sugar. However now with fall, I've got to stop being lazy and cheap and get it fixed.

When I get it fixed, these cupcakes are first on my list to try - perfect for using any left over candy corns. I can't imagine a much better combination - pumpkin, cream cheese and candy corns. Definitely my kind of treat.

Monday, November 2, 2009

[kids focus] leaf rub

For one of the days during our leaf week, we took the leaves we had collected outside and made leaf rubs. Elle loves to color so it was a nice change from just coloring on blank pieces of paper or in her coloring books. She also loved to trace around the leaves. Just put the leaf under the piece of paper and use a crayon to rub over the leaf until the leaf images begins to show through.

[kids focus] leaf walk

For one week, Elle and I focused on leaves. The first day we went on a leaf walk in our backyard and gathered all types of leaves from our trees. After we had gathered a sack of leaves, we took them inside and organized and sorted them by color.
Fortunately (or unfortunately if you are my husband and hate having to rake so many leaves every year - so far we've taken over 22 leaf trash bags to the dump), our backyard is full of leaves. Our "leaf week" fell at the perfect time where there were plenty of leaves on the ground and still in the trees.

If you don't have access to a lot of leaves, you can also make your own. Simply cut leaves (we made leaf die cuts with the Epic Die-Cutting Tool and QuicKutz die REV-0249-S) in several colors and let your child sort those into color piles.

With both options, she had a great time and loved practicing her colors on both the real and paper leaves. On another day, we used the paper leaves to make up "falling leaf" songs. As we sang the songs, we threw the leaves into the air to let them fall to the ground. Baby Liv found this quite entertaining.

a theme for the week

For the past few weeks, I've been trying "themed" weeks in an effort to try and be more organized and interactive with my kids. I've found that if I take the time to plan out activities for the week, it's easier for me to make sure I'm taking time during the day to devote just to my kids. Working from home full-time makes my schedule pretty crazy, and if I don't preplan, my day can easily get overtaken with the demands of work and just the basics of childcare. I'm not the best at just sitting down to play. I totally admire moms who are great at that. For me, having preplanned activities helps give me a focus and ensures that I'm prepared and scheduled to "just play". Even if it is only for 10 or 15 minutes, these activities have given Elle and I something new to do together each day, and I hope it helps her feel and understand how important she and Liv are to me. To record these ideas for my own personal reference, I'm going to post these projects/ideas under a kids focus theme. Do any of you have any ideas for fun, fast, creative things to do with your kids?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

little princesses

This Halloween Elle decided she wanted to be a princess. My sister's and I used to make princess crowns with beads and wire when I was younger so I thought it would be fun to make these for Elle and Liv. They are super easy. You just string the beads on a strand of wire big enough to fit around your head. Then take another strand of wire and string beads as you wrap it in a triangle formation around the first strand of beads and wire. For Elle, I put the crown peaks in a complete circle, and for Liv, I just put the peaks in the front of the crown. I also made Elle matching jewelry with the beads and silver elastic thread. I ended up just buying Elle's princess dress and switched out the white rosette embellishments for sparkly buttons. For Liv's costume (pictured above), I embellished a onesie with silver jewels and sewed a pink princess skirt. Overall, I think they turned out ok and it's always fun to get to be creative with their costumes.