Sunday, August 9, 2015

New Tutorial: Plastic Lined Car Trash Bag

A few years ago I started seeing DIY car garbage bags or as I call them carbage bags popping up on blogs. I knew I needed to make some. As a mom my car seems to fill up with straw wrappers and trash so a carbage bag is a must. I've made a few over the years but I found that the fabric got wet or yucky after awhile. I thought there had to be a better way to make carbage bags, then I discovered a roll of black plastic sheeting in the paint aisle at Home Depot. I started sewing a layer of the black plastic sheeting into the carbage bag and the problem was solved.
Last week I was showing some friends how to make plastic lined carbage bags. I decided to write out directions so I created a quick tutorial. It takes me about 15 minutes to make a carbage bag so they're quick and easy to make. Here's a link for the tutorial.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Busy crafting

 This month the craft along theme over at Yarnigras Swapper Spot is independence or in other words, doing something you've wanted to do. My list of projects that I want to do is massive and my collection of projects I have started but have not completed . . . well that is way to long to talk about! Since it's summer my craft room and I have been spending some time together getting reaquainted. I seem to forget how much I enjoy time spent in my craft room until I start crafting again. Now I'm back in my craft room creating and finishing up some projects. Just look at what I've made.

 A few years ago I went to a workshop in Boston, one of the other workshop participants had an amazing scarf made from neckties. I loved it! I found the designer through a little research online but at $70 the scarves were too expensive for me. (I should have bought one, I looked them up again today, they're $150 now.) Granted they are unique and beautiful creations but I just couldn't bring myself to buy one for that price so I found a couple scarves at a thrift shop and thought I'd see what I could create.

Creating necktie scarves was harder than I thought it would be. I created the black one but I wasn't totally happy with it. I had pinned together a second necktie scarf but gave up on it after I didn't like the first. I stuck them in a drawer, pins and all, and forgot about them. I pulled the yellow and blue one out of my craft stash earlier this week determined to pull all of the pins out of it. On a whim I decided to take a few minutes to sew it together before removing the pins. I also re-finished the end of the black tie that I didn't like. Here's the finished product. They're nothing like the amazing creations the orignial designer makes but I like how they turned out and I completed an unfinished project that sat in a drawer for two years. . . yay for me!

I also pulled out a stitchery that I had finished a couple of years but hadn't done anything with. I loved the stitchery but couldn't decide what to do with it so it sat forgotten for years. Not any more, using some scrap fabric I sewed it into a little pillow.  Another unfinished project done.  :)  I feel so accomplished!

This is my favorite bag pattern, it's reversible. I have several of these bags and often give them as gifts. I even use one as my school bag, it's the perfect size. I decided to cut out a few of these bags using fabrics from my stash. I finished this one and another one this week and I have a crafting date with a friend next week to sew up the rest.

Lastly, I made a carbage bag for my neighbor. As moms, we always end up with trash and wrappers in the car when we're transporting kids around, so a carbabge bag is a necessity. I started lining these with some black plastic sheeting I found at Home Depot. It works perfectly to keep the fabric from getting wet or stained from the trash.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Summer Fun

Summer vacation is a great time for school teachers. It's a time to recharge, create and just enjoy some time at home. Every summer since my daughter was little we've created a summer fun list. It's the list of the fun things we want to do over summer vacation. Years ago we created one list for the two of us but a few years ago we started creating our own lists. Here's my 2015 summer fun list. I make my list pretty generic because it's meant to be fun. I've printed it out so I can check off items as I complete them but it's not a have to do list, so there's no guilt if things don't get checked off.
Now it's time to have some summer fun! Yay for summer!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Long Time No Craft

I recently entered a graduate program to get ELL certified. I'm still teaching full time and started taking taking my first graduate course in January. It's been a long time since I've taken a graduate course and to be honest I've never taken one during the school year while I'm still teaching. I've mostly completed courses during the summer. It's a lot of reading and a lot of work but it's very interesting.

The toughest part is that my graduate course now takes up the time I used for crafting and reading for pleasure.  I'm a teacher so I read all the time however, I've always enjoyed reading just for pure entertainment and enjoyment. I love a good science fiction teen read, but it feels like I've haven't read a good book in forever. Instead I'm reading professional books and articles on language acquisition. Interesting stuff but it requires brain power and isn't reading for pleasure. This week I'm on winter break so I've decided to complete a craft or two and I'll be reading a book just for the pure enjoyment of reading. I've participated in the Goodreads book challenge for the last three years and have read 25 books each year. I'm participating again this year but I lowered my goal for this year. I hope to read 15 books in 2015. So far I've read three, but the good new is I have a couple picked out to start reading this week.

I participated in the February craft along over at Yarnigras Swapper Spot.  I created a zombie flower drink cozy using recycled wool coats and the cuff from a wool sweater. I know the point of this month's challenge was to create a coffee cozy to keep your hands warm. I love a good hot chocolate like anyone else, but I'm tired of winter and snow!! We've had over six feet of snow since January first. I just want to think spring, warm days and unsweetened ice tea. My zombie flower was created with these warm spring thoughts in mind. Maybe now that the first undead flower has bloomed, spring will finally come! Alas, wishful thinking!

I also bought some small clothespins and created these little spacemen.  I just used wooden clothespins, a thin Sharpie and twistable colored pencils to create these little guys but it feels great to be crafting again. I teach the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum to my four and five year olds at school. We're working on writing within the lines and spacing our letters. I thought these spacemen might help a few of the kids but I didn't want to leave anyone out so I made enough for the whole class. Maybe I'll get to sneak in another project before my break is over.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Snow, Snow, Snow!

We live in New England, where it snows every winter. As New Englanders we are use to cold, snowy conditions. Winter started out fairly mild this year, in fact we had a green Christmas. Then January came and with it came the snow. We have been burried under 80+ inches of snow during the last two months. We can't really complain because we choose to live in New England and snow is part of living here, however I'm ready for a break from snow.

Check out these icicles on the house. They were bigger, but they melted quite a bit today.

This is the gate to the pool. Just beyond the fence you can see all of the snow on the roof of the gazebo. You can't even tell where the pool is for all of the snow in the backyard. Honestly, I've forgotten what my backyard looks like without three feet of snow covering it. With all this snow you can see why I'm looking forward to spring arriving. So think happy spring thoughts!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Sweet Chunky

Being a pet owner isn't always easy; let's face it pets can be expensive. Of course, sweet moments like this make it worth every cent. Here's Chinky riding in the car with his girl, they are so sweet together! 

I love this picture. Sun bathing in the temperature controlled house is Chunky's favorite pasttime. He will follow the sun around the house, sleeping in the sun all afternoon. He actually gets a reverse tan from all the sun bathing. Since he's black to start with, his chest and belly turn brown from laying in the sun.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Crafty Freak Project Catch Up . . . Again!

To start the year off right I wanted to get caught up on my Crafty Freaks projects. I've been crafting, I just haven't been posting the pictures. I'd like to think that I'll do a better job posting pictures in the new year, but honestly I probably won't. That means there will be a few more Crafty Freak Project catch up posts to look forward to in 2015.
Here's what I've been creating:

More wire tree ornaments for the handmade ornament swap over at Yarnigras swapper spot.

A burlap wreath for my sister.

A red glittery ribbon wreath for my front door. 

Painted mason jar mugs filled with hot cocoa packets for my co-workers.

Handpainted treat jars for the paraprofessionals in my classroom.

I also painted six new stemless wine glasses for myself but neglected to take pictures of those. I just filled them with wine and tried them out instead. :) 

Now that I'm caught up again, I hope I can ring in the new year with some new crafty projects. Crafting is good for the soul!