Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Holidays

Oh man, Jordan and I had SUCH a wonderful Christmas weekend!

Saturday we both got off work early, came home and packed up our clothes, pillows, and Christmas presents and headed out to Mom and Dad's house for a well-deserved long weekend! Saturday night we all played games and hung out by the fire. We made Christmas cookies and enjoyed company. Grandma Shirley (Del's mom) flew down from Utah the day before so it was nice catching up with and spending some time with her. At the end of the night we pumped up the air mattress and settled in for the night.

Sunday we all slept in and then went to Church. Afterwards, Mike, Kylie, and Preston came over as well as cousins Sean and Becky! We had a big Christmas dinner, played some games, ate Christmas treats, took some family pictures, and called it a night. It was nice to see Sean and Becky, although we don't see them as often as we'd like we like spending time with them and catching up on their lives! Yet again, as the night ended we snuggled up on our air mattress and settled in for the night.

Christmas Eve was a very relaxed day. Everyone mostly did their own thing. Dad and Grandma made candy, Mom blogged, Jordan and I watched holiday movies, but at times we all came together and guess what.....played more games. At about 8:30 p.m. we got a call from Kylie and she and Mike said they were on their way over from Mike's family party and that they were going to stay the night! So, once everyone was in bed the house was FULL! Mom and Dad were in their room, Kathryn in her room, Grandma in the spare room, Jordan and I were on a blow-up mattress in the office, Preston was in his crib in the mini-office, and Kylie and Mike made a pallet in the living room out of the couch cushions! Whew!

Christmas morning was fun because everyone got to wake everyone else up! We had a traditional Christmas morning with wonderful presents and a huge breakfast! Jordan and I were able to video chat with my family while they were opening presents, which was super fun to get an update on everyone "in person" and see what everyone got. After the events of the morning were over we showered and then ended up taking naps. When I woke up from my nap the ground was covered in SNOW! North Texas and the ground was covered in snow! It was amazing! I was sure glad that Dad and Jordan had gotten a fire going so I could sit by it and stay nice and warm! Around 2:30 everyone got bundled up and got in the car to go see Les Miserables! Because of the weather it took us a little longer than expected to get to the theater, but we got a great seat on opening day nonetheless! Our last holiday hoorah as a family was sitting in the theater enjoying a musical, haha! After the movie we said our good-byes and all headed home.

Jordan and I had such a wonderful weekend and it was really hard to snap back into reality! Back to the grind of the dry cleaner, back to the grind of having to cook again, back to the grind of cleaning the house, ugh. Once all is said and done though, we made some really great memories and had SUCH a great time. This Christmas will be a hard one to beat next year!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

My Favorites Vol. I

Hi guys! For a few weeks now I've been stewing over what to blog about, mostly because my life is pretty boring and if I just posted about events in my life I would lose my reading population very quickly, so with that being said I have to tell you about my inspiration for this mini-series. Last week I went to a GREAT Christmas party hosted by some fabulous girls I go to church with, it was called a "Favorite Things" party. What we were told to do was go out and purchase five our favorite thing (I brought 5 hazelnut cream candles) and bring them to the party. At the party we put our name on 5 strips of paper and threw it in a fishbowl with everyone else's 5 names and then pick a number 1-30. Once everyone was at the party we started the main event. The person that picked #1 drew 5 names out of the fishbowl and gave those 5 people her favorite thing, #2 did the same and so on. I had never been to a gift exchange party like that before, but I thought it was so neat, because a majority of the favorite things brought were things I have never heard of and yet I found myself cheering when my name was called because I was so excited to try some new things!

After the party I was lying in bed thinking about all my favorite things and I decided I was going to share my favorites with all of my beautiful readers! I'm not quite sure where to start, but I figure no one has more favorites than in their bathroom/makeup bag we go with my favorite beautifying products.

Bathroom Products:

1. Vitamin C Facial Lotion/Cream

This stuff is a miracle worker!! I've never been big on putting lotion on my face, but this stuff changed my outlook on facial moisturizing! Once you get out of the shower, put a pea-size amount of lotion on and continue with your make-up routine. Why is it a miracle worker? Any blemish I have will almost disappear the next morning if I have put this on! Wow. You can get this stuff at Walmart for $8-$14.

2. E.L.F. Essential All Over Color Stick

Okay, now I don't use this the way I'm sure it is intended. I use this stuff as an eye shadow primer. When I was a sophomore in high school going to my very first formal dance I let my sister do my makeup. She told me to close my eyes and next thing I knew she was putting sticky goop on my eyelids! I freaked out and asked her what the heck she was doing to me, she taught me that in order to have powerful and bold color stick and stay on your eyelids for hours and hours you need to have a base on which the shadow can stay, hence the sticky stuff, aka lip gloss. I have since advanced from ultra sticky lip gloss to this stuff that is not nearly as sticky, more functional (in the sense that I don't have to force my eyelids closed), and long lasting. You can get this stuff at Target or KMart for $1. ONE BUCK! That is pretty good!

3. Freeze-It Hairspray

Holy Crap! I will never use any other hairspray ever again. Now, I'm the kind of person that teases her hair and likes her bangs to stay in place once she leaves the bathroom....I don't do beach hair, I don't do loosey goosey hair, I just can't, my hair does not have the capability. My hair is very fine and has a hard time doing anything without a little product. This hairspray does just what it is named, FREEZE IT! It is a fine spray, but not as fine as Kenra or some of those other big names, but it DOES work! I think it smells like Diet Rockstar which is my energy drink of choice, so all in all I love the product. You can get this almost exclusively at Walmart for about $5 a can.

4. Three Row Comb

Okay, this is the bad boy of all combs! There are three rows of teeth on this comb. If you tease your hair or do any type of back-combing, YOU NEED THIS COMB! I'm not sure where you can get one of these because I somehow (cough cough) acquired this during my days of living with roommates! Haha! This comb will save you so much time and allows you to just power through your style session!

5. Mary Kay Eye Make-Up Remover

My mom got me hooked on this stuff. Just like I was never one to use a facial lotion, I was never one to use a special product just to get my excess mascara off after a shower, I just used some toilet paper, or my towel. Last winter while my mom came and visited us in Idaho she saw my "terrible habit of being rough on my precious soft eye skin." (Direct quote!) She told me she was going to get me some and I was really hesitant to accept because I'm not know for finishing a bottle of any type of product, but reluctantly I accepted. A couple of weeks later I got my pink bottle in the mail and I literally fell in love with my first use! This stuff isn't greasy, is very mild, gets everything extra off your eyes with one cotton ball, and quite honestly feels like silk. I would highly recommend this to anyone and everyone! You can get this through Mary Kay and is about $13-$15. With this stuff a little really does go a long way, it took me about 6 or 7 months to go through my first bottle, so worth the money!

That wraps up my favorites in the bathroom! Hope you enjoyed and if YOU have a favorite you'd like to recommend to me please please please do!!

Monday, December 3, 2012

My T-Shirt Quilt

I'm going to start off by saying that this is NOT a tutorial, but I will make links to all the tutorials I used to help me piece together this project.

After Jordan and I got married we didn't have all the furniture we'd hoped we have, so we had to go out and purchase those plastic drawer sets from Walmart. It turns out that you can't fit a whole lot in those things so I had to truly downsize my "collection" of shirts from high school. I could not bear to get rid of them or throw them out because of their sentimental value so I just put them in a plastic bag and hid them in the closet. There they sat for a year, then we moved down to Texas and again...there they sat.

After Jordan and I took over the business I was working at our drop location, which provided a lot of down time, so I finally made up my mind that I would FINALLY start working on my quilt with all that down time.

The first step was to cut out squares from my T-shirts. Once my squares were cut out I ironed on a fusible interfacing. 

The next step was to lay out my shirts and decide on how I wanted the top of my quilt to look.

It took me a few attempts to get it just right. Once the layout was what I wanted it to be I sewed each square together horizontally, ironed the seams, then sewed each row together, ironed the seams again and my top was complete. The next step was to sew my border, put on batting, and sew on my backing. The tutorial I used suggests cotton fabric for both the border and the backing, but I used flannel for my border and a minky/ furry fabric for my backing.

Once I had my border sewed on to my top I then used a basting spray (it is like a glue spray that holds the batting in place while you sew and then comes out once you wash your project) to temporarily hold my batting in place while I got my backing situated and sewed on. Hooray! My quilt was almost done! Once my quilt was turned right-side-out I sewed the turn hole shut. Next, I needed to make sure my back and my front wouldn't separate in the wash or while in use so I sewed along the border and also along the seam of each square just to secure the fabric and voila! I'm done!

This was my very first quilt I started and finished and I'm really proud of my work. Yes, there are a couple mistakes and a few things I would do a little different next time, but overall I'm so glad I saved my sentimental shirts and made them into something I can snuggle up in and share with my children in the future!!

This site is a REALLY great source of information. I followed this tutorial almost exclusively. If you have any questions on how to do something or want to do things a little different I would search for other tutorials, there are lots. I liked the one I linked because she did a really good job with all the details and pictures. There are so many variations to this quilt, so if you want to do a T-Shirt Quilt do a little brainstorming and figure out what you want your quilt to look like and search for a tutorial from there!

Whew, I can FINALLY check that project off of my list!