Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A Creation and a Zombie

I've been on a softie/plushie making kick.  I always loved stuffed animals as a kid. I guess I still do, only now I like to make my own. After making the elephant for my sister's shower I decided to make another one for someone at work who just had their first grandchild. This time I used fleece for the body. Note to self don't use fleece next time it's too stretchy, cotton fabrics work much better. 

After I finished the elephant I decided to make a zombie.  When I make a zombie, I usually have some kind of plan in mind that I sketch out. This time I decided to try something different, I had no vision of what I was going to create, I just built it as I went along.  I made this zombie using pieces of two recycled sweaters and pieces of two wool coats. I stitched on his wounds, then painted his wounds with acrylic paint to make him look bloodier.  I added mismatched button eyes and even added yarn hair this time.  I actually crocheted his intestines, which is impressive since I'm not very good with a crochet hook. He's sitting on the bookshelf next to the other zombies awaiting the arrival of a new zombie in the coming months. I've been anxiously awaiting the opening of signs ups for a zombie doll swap over at Yarnigras Swapper Spot.  The theme is zombies in the nursery. You know it's going to be good!

Speaking of zombies last week was the 10th anniversary of the release of Shaun of the Dead. Even ten years later it's one of my favorites!  Watching Shaun of the Dead all those years ago  is what actually sparked my love of zombies. I still love funny zombie movies that aren't super scary. Below is a list of my favorite zombie movies.
  1. Shaun of the Dead
  2. Zombieland
  3. Warm Bodies
  4. Cockneys vs. Zombies
  5. I am Legend ( I consider this a zombie movie - warning: it is a little scary.)
If you're a zombie fan and haven't seen one of these go immediately and watch it now. You'll thank me later.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Chunk in Lego Land

This is Chunk, our silly little black pug. Chunk is goofy, sweet, wild, obnoxious(at times,) a good companion and is always standing underfoot. He just wants to be everywhere we are. He snores like a chainsaw, snorts like a pig and makes us laugh with his silly antics.  He will eat anything! Even now at almost three years old he still eats things he shouldn't.  One of his favorite things is eating Legos. If there is a Lego on the floor he'll chew it.

My daughter has lots of Legos and enjoys putting together Lego sets as well as just creating on her own.  She made this Lego Land sign. Usually Chunk gets sent out of the room during Lego time, but . . .

 Chunky didn't want to miss out on a trip to Lego Land so here he is posing with the sign. Thankfully he prefers individual Lego pieces instead of chunks of Legos so the sign survived his trip into Lego Land.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Baby Gifts

This weekend we had a baby shower for my sister and her husband who are expecting a baby in May. We are very excited to add a tenth child on my side of the family.  My daughter is surrounded by cousins and we're thrilled that we'll have a new baby boy to add to the mix.

I wanted to make something for the baby.  The baby's room is gray so I created this sweet little elephant as a decoration for his room.

Here he is in the basket of goodies I had collected for the baby. I fell in love with this metal basket and decided to forgo a gift bag, instead creating a gift basket of baby goodies.

 My other sister and I planned the shower with some help from family and friends.  We wanted simple decorations that could be used after the shower to decorate the baby's room.  My sister sent me a pin and asked me if I could make this giraffe. I thought it was cute but knew I wanted to change a few things. Of course I could have purchased a pattern for the giraffe in the pin, but where is the fun in actually knowing how to make it?  :)  Call me crazy, but I think the fun is the challenge of figuring it out and creating your own. I decided I could do it, so I took some old newspaper and drew out a pattern then preceded to create this little guy.  I named him Stu, because by the time I finished him it was two in the morning and I kept saying "Stupid giraffe." My pattern worked out but the challenge was attaching his legs in a way that he could stand up on his own. I tore one leg off three times. To be honest I still think there must be a better way to attach the legs but I haven't done any research to figure it out. Of course I'm not sure I'll ever need to make another one. At this point Stu is purely for decorative purposes, as I'm sure he wouldn't stand up to a wild ride with a child on his back.

This is my brother-in -law and my sister with Stu.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Hurry Up Spring

The calendar says it's officially spring, I've seen robins in our yard and the snow is melting so I think spring might actually be here.  Looking at the the gazebo makes me long for warmer spring days.

 Our mulch beds need a bit of work but they hold the promise of new flowers this summer.

It was buried under thick snow all winter, but we can finally see the pool. We had snowflakes this morning then rain so the pool cover is finally clear of snow. Now we need some warmer weather so we can get outside.  We're ready to start going for walks in the neighborhood and enjoying our yard again.

The neighborhood kids want to be outside playing and riding their bikes or scooters too, so hurry up spring weather we're waiting for you!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Puffy Re-do

This pink blanket has been with my daughter since she was an infant.  It's a down blanket and it's name has always been Puffy. For her whole life Puffy, Blueberry and Pinky(the same bear as Blueberry only in pink) have been her three most precious possessions. Over the years Puffy has developed a few holes and required repairs. With frequent washing, wear and tear he needed repairs more often. Then about two years ago Puffy had a major feather explosion and was placed in a bag in the back of the closet until we could figure out what to do with him. He was replaced by a full size down comforter but was never forgotten.  For her birthday this winter I dug out Puffy and made a new covering to contain him and prevent future feather explosions. You would have thought I gave her the most amazing gift, she loved it.

Here's Puffy with his new blue cover. He looks a little different but she still loves him. He once again has a special place in her bed, though now she's taller and doesn't quite fit under him like she use to.

I found this is the picture in a pile of her drawings. She had drawn the new Puffy on a recent car trip when she took Puffy along to keep her warm. I guess ten years later Puffy is still one of her most precious possessions, even after his puffy re-do.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Birthday Surprises

I just celebrated my birthday.  I love that my birthday falls during school vacation week so I get to stay home and celebrate my birthday with my family.  We have a few birthday traditions at our house. For your birthday you get to have dinner at the restaurant of your choice and a homemade birthday dessert of your choosing. This year we had a girl's outing and got our hair curled up for our dinner out.  It was a lot of fun! Here I am with my new curls, wearing the necklace that my friend Michele sent me for my birthday. Michele was my first teaching assistant, over 18 years later and several moves around the country, we're still friends.  Thanks Michele, you always spoil me!

This is my requested birthday dessert. It's Ultimate Pretzel Crusted Peanut Butter Cookie Candy Brownie bars. You can find the recipe here. They were yummy. See the crocheted top in the picture? It was made by my friend Val.  She sent me a birthday surprise and included the top for my daughter. Val is amazing with a crochet hook! Well really she's amazing with all types of crafting! Pop by her blog to see some of her creations.

Look at my new red bag!  Val crocheted this cute bag just for me. She even made it in my favorite color; red.

The inside of the bag is lined with a sweet cherry fabric.  I just adore it!  Thank you Val!

 My friend Kerry also sent me a surprise birthday package. Kerry make these amazing freezer paper tote bags.  This one is a tree with an owl on it. I have this thing about trees, I like them and think they are amazing, they weather all kinds of things in the course of a year but still continue to grow it bloom. They are strong and resilient, this bag makes me think about that.

I have a bit of a zombie problem, I love them!  I'm slowly collecting handmade zombie dolls. Kerry made this amazing zombie doll for me. 

Her name is Zoey and she came in a handmade box wrapped up in cellophane with this little poem attached. She's made with paperclay and has a fabric body. It was like receiving a precious china doll, only it's even better it's a zombie! Kerry is an amazing crafter, check out Kerry's creations here.

Here's an updated photo of my zombie horde.  The horde is continuing to grow. Rumor has it there might be a zombie doll swap in the near future over at yarnigras swapper spot. If you're a zombie doll fan you might want to check it out.

If I haven't mentioned it before, I have some amazing friends!  They are kind, thoughtful and so amazingly talented!  Thank you ladies, your kindness and friendship means the world to me! Thank you for spoiling me on my birthday!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Needful Things Package

 I mailed off my Needful Things swap package this week.  I really enjoyed collecting and creating things for my partner. I'll share some pictures of what I made, after it arrives at it's destination.

When I pulled in my driveway this afternoon I found a package by my garage door.  Sarah K. sent me the perfect package; it was filled with all the things I need in my life.  When I opened the box, I discovered this art work.  One of her children drew it for me.  Look I'm wearing my red shoes! It made me smile:) So sweet!

Sarah wrapped and labeled all of the goodies so I had the fun of unwrapping everything.

 Look at all of the amazing goodies!  The Blue Fairy Book which I can't wait to read, a candle, pretty gloves, Sharpies:) crafty baubles and a cell phone zombie made out of felt.  Don't you love it!

And last but not least Sarah made me an amazing apron with red and white polka dots!  I was so excited!  This was an amazing package filled with all the things I love, thank you Sarah!  I love everything and feel so spoiled!  I hope my partner will enjoy her package as much as I enjoyed mine.