Join us for our Christmas Galore Link Party! Come share your awesome ideas for Christmas decor, party ideas, recipes, activities and anything else!!

While you're here, be sure to enter our giveaway for Shutterfly and Plum District Goodies! The giveaway has been extended to December 2nd and there will be 5 winners!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

FHE Idea - Living Our Gospel Standards

The Primary children have been learning about being worthy to go to the temple and how their body is a temple. We've also recently discussed the specific Gospel Standards, so I thought a fun lesson at home would be a good idea!

Song: I love to see the Temple (Children's Songbook #95) (Download the song here or see and hear the music here)

Scripture: Article of Faith 1:13

Lesson Idea:
Write or type the Gospel Standards onto separate sheets of paper:
  1. I will remember my baptismal covenants and listen to the Holy Ghost.
  2. I will be honest with Heavenly Father, others, and myself.
  3. I will seek good friends and treat others kindly.
  4. I will dress modestly to show respect for Heavenly Father and myself.
  5. I will only read and watch things that are pleasing to Heavenly Father.
  6. I will only listen to music that is pleasing to Heavenly Father.
  7. I will use the names of Heavenly Father and Jesus reverently. I will not swear or use crude words.
  8. I will keep my mind and body sacred and pure, and I will not partake of things that are harmful to me.
  9. I will do those things on the Sabbath that will help me feel close to Heavenly Father.
  10. I will choose the right. I know I can repent when I make a mistake.
  11. I will live now to be worthy to go to the temple and do my part to have an eternal family. 
  12. I will follow Heavenly Father’s plan for me.
  13. I am a child of God
  14. I know Heavenly Father loves me, and I love him.
  15. I can pray to Heavenly Father anytime, anywhere.
  16. I am trying to remember and follow Jesus
Prominently display a picture of a temple or Christ at one end of the room. Lay the papers out on the floor as a path to the temple. If you have stairs, you could put the picture at the top and the papers could be on each step. Read aloud each of the Gospel Standards and help children understand what they mean. As part of the lesson, have your children walk along the path to the temple. Point out that it's pretty easy if you're following all the of the steps. Then take out a few of the papers along the path so that they can still step along but it requires more work. Try taking out more papers (so that there are only 3 or 4 along the path) and explain how if you're not following and living by the Gospel Standards, it's almost impossible to reach our ultimate goal - the temple and to live with our Heavenly Father again.

To help children visualize and understand the Gospel Standards, find pictures that go along with each Standard. This will be especially helpful for younger children. I was going to do up my own to share with you, but then I came across this one here (from that has the standards typed up and pictures to go with them. As I've said before, why reinvent the wheel?

You could also find objects to represent each standard and discuss which standard the objects relate to and why that specific standard is important.

If your children are older, instead of using the Gospel Standards, you could use the standards defined in the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet. That link will take you to PDFs of the entire pamphlet.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Quiet Book Page #4 - Letters

Remember the Quite Book Overview I did a while back? I'm going through the book page by page and explaining in more detail how I did everything and linking to any patterns that I used. Be sure to check out the other quiet book pages and the Quiet Book FAQ!

Quiet Book Page #1 - Train Tracks
Quiet Book Page #2 - Shapes and Colors
Quiet Book Page #3 - Barn & Finger Puppets

I'm going to be posting the rest of Andyroo's quiet book pages next week, so be sure to check them out! 

This is the Alphabet Page in Andyroo's Quiet Book.

For this page, I drew then cut out 2 letters from some light blue felt. I (hand sewed) some small pieces of velcro onto the back of one of the sets of each letter. Then I put the matching letter on top and whip stitched them together.

After I had all my letters done, I laid them out on the two pages making sure they all had a spot. You'll want to do this before you sew your book pages together. Trace the outline of each letter with a pen or marker.

I left a small space below the letters on the second page so that Andyroo could practice spelling when he gets older. Next you need to add velcro to the pages so the letters have something to stick to. Try to match up with where you sewed the velcro onto the individual letters. In the picture above, you can see where the white velcro is on the page. I used 2 small pieces of velcro on each letter to give the page a little more hold. In the picture below, you can see a close-up of the space below the letters. I drew a line to show where he could spell words.

After your velcro is sewn onto the pages, you can sew your pages together, put the letters on, and then go to town.

Andyroo loves to take all the letters off and then match them back up. He's only 2 (3 in less than a month - yikes!) so we haven't really gotten into spelling.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Tips to Keep the Bugs Away

I couldn't bring myself to post a picture of an actual bug. So the animated
version is what you get...

We live in a basement apartment, so naturally we get bugs. We've seen our share of earwigs, spiders, ants, june bugs and more!

Last year was especially bad for earwigs. Holy cow! They were everywhere. I would wake up in the morning and find about 10 or 15 scattered around the floor. Every few days I would find a little grouping of baby earwigs under our rug or in our bathtub. It got so bad that they were getting into our food. I poured a bowl of cereal for myself one day and almost took a bit out of an earwig. Gross, huh?

In our previous apartment, our door faced the sun so everyday we would get a mass of june bugs sun bathing on our door, all over our driveway, and on the front face of the apartment. Everyday when we would leave or come home, we would run in or out as fast as we could to keep them from getting inside.

So what can you do to keep those pesky pests away? Here are a few things I've learned over the years.

  1. Get Rid of Hiding Places. Earwigs and spiders love to hide out in dark, untouched (preferably damp) places. Leave as little as you can just sitting around. Don't leave piles of clothes sitting on the floor or stacks of newspapers laying around. I can't tell you how many spiders I've found amongst clothes or how many earwigs I found in stacks of paper. Even paper that was up on the counter! Remember the earwig I almost ate? *Shudder* I got rid of all our opened food in the pantry (cereal, chips, etc) and everything new that we opened from that point forward went straight into ziploc bags or plastic containers. Just make sure to seal everything properly after you use it.
  2. Clean Regularly! This might sound like a no-brainer, but it really will help, especially when it comes to ants. If  they have nothing to go after, they won't come inside. We had issues with ants in the kitchen and unless I wiped down the counter each and every time I used it, it was swarming with ants. Even if I just left some crumbs from toast or flour from baking. Make sure to vacuum and/or sweep under everything - not just around things - and vacuum often!. It's the things that don't get moved that attract the bugs. Keep your clothes hanging up or in the dresser.
  3. See What you Can do Outside. The bugs migrate from the outside in, so if you can stop them from enjoying your yard, chances are you'll have less bugs to deal with inside. Get rid of standing water, move your garden further away from your house (if possible), try not to use bark or wood chips in your yard (earwigs, especially love this stuff)
  4. Make Sure your House is Sealed Well. This may not be an option for those in apartments, but look around for hols and such where bugs can get into the house easily. Do what you can to seal them up. Use some caulking to seal cracks and holes in the foundation, walls, and flooring of your house.
Some natural products you can use to keep the bugs away:
  1. Use essential oils and candles. Heather had good luck keeping spiders away with Lavender candles and oils. Also try garlic, pepper, mint, or citrus peels (especially orange and lemon). If you're dealing with bugs outside, consider a citronella candle.
  2. Try making barriers. Supposedly, ants won't cross chalk, baking soda, or borax lines. I've also heard that a barrier of Cream of Wheat works (because they eat it and then it expands and they die). Try it out!
  3. Look for sprays that you can use to keep the bugs away. We've had good luck with a product called Hi-Yield (found at an IFA type store). It's safe to use around pets and children, has no strong scent, but apparently doesn't take care of hobo spiders. It also had no effect on earwigs because we had way too many for me. To help keep the earwigs at bay, I also used Hot Shot Natural Home Insect Control. It was also safe around kids and pets (Andyroo was crawling/almost walking at the time) and had a lemony scent, not a chemical scent. I was able to find it at Lowes for around $4-6.
Do you have any awesome tips to keep the bugs away? PLEASE feel free to share!!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

*ENDED* Our First Giveaway - Customized Baby Gift Set

This giveaway has ended. Please click here to see if we have any current giveaways going on!

We decided it was finally time to do a giveaway here at Life in the Motherhood! We're really excited about it and we think you all will be too.

I finally took the plunge and launched my own Etsy store. It's an idea I've toyed with for a while and last week I launched Dupree Designs! To celebrate, we're doing our first giveaway here on Life in the Motherhood!

So, what are the goods, you ask? Your choice of a baby boy or baby girl gift set!


We're offering all of the following (in a baby boy or girl theme) to one lucky reader:
  • 3 Customized onesies either for a boy or girl (you tell us after you win) (short-sleeved, sized 0-3 mos)
Either girly like this in pink and brown with a customized name

Or something more boyish like this (can still do something with a name, if desired)

  • 1 Pair of Bitty Booties to match the onesies (sized 0-3 mos). Will be done in either brown with pink ribbon or brown with blue ribbon.
  • Dark brown felt with a light brown cotton lining and teal satin ribbon accent
  • 2 customized Burp Cloths similar to these:

  • 1 Pacifier Clip
(These items are all handmade and may vary slightly, but the entire set will coordinate and be VERY cute!)

This would be an awesome gift set for yourself or to give to a new mama that you may know. So even if you're not pregnant, feel free to enter and save it as a gift for the future!

Now, the details about how to enter. You have 3 entrance opportunities:
  1. Become a follower of the Life in the Motherhood blog. You need to comment after you've followed. If you're already a follower, then leave us a comment saying so!
  2. Like us on Facebook (see our sidebar for the link). Again, leave us a comment after you've liked us.
  3. Let your friends know! Blog about this to your readers, share it on facebook, tweet about it - do anything!. One again, come back and leave us a comment letting us know that you did.
Remember to come back here and comment on this post in order to be entered!!!

Easy enough, right? The giveaway will be open from July 28th (today) through 11:59 p.m. on August 4th (next Thursday). We'll pick a winner with and announce it on the morning of August 5th. Be sure to check back to see if you won!

What are you waiting for? Go get your entries in!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

R2-D2 Cake

Hubs turned the big 3-0 in March. I LOVE making caking, so of course I had to do something special for his 30th. He loves Star Wars, so this is what I came up with...


Want to see how I made it? I thought so :) Lucky for you I took pictures of the process so I could post this on my family blog. I thought you all might enjoy seeing it too!

You'll want to have all your cakes frosted and all your fondant made. I just stick with white buttercream frosting and blue and white fondant. I also made his arms from rice krispie treats. In total I used 4 layers of round cake (put together on cake circles in sets of 2) along with the rounded tops (that were trimmed off prior to frosting the cakes), about 2 lbs of white fondant and maybe a half pound of blue fondant, 2 pans of rice krispie treats, and somewhere around 3 recipes of buttercream frosting (approx 3lbs).

Writing all that out and thinking about all that sugar makes me kind of sick. What about you?

I started with an ice cream bucket, a couple of nails, and my large wooden cutting board.

I took the handle off the bucket and hammered in the nails.

The bucket was just to add some height without having to bake so much stinking cake. We had PLENTY of cake as it was! The bucket also added some strength to the so it didn't tip so much (though if you look at the final product you can see a little tippage anyway) and the nails helped hold it all in place.

Now you need to frost the bucket. Never mind the weird looks your husband is giving you.

Then start adding cake.

As you put the layers on, leave the cake on the cake circles. I used just some round pans I had - around the 7 inch size, I believe. I did have to trim a little bit though. Also, you'll need to add a few dowels into the middle of the cake for support.

You'll want to add dowels for each set of cakes you add. Simply put the dowel in (to measure it), pull it out, cut it down, and reinsert.

Add the next layer(s) of cake.

And the rounded layers. To do this step, I just piled and frosted the domed tops of the cakes that I trimmed off earlier. I think I used 3 of them, but I can't be sure. Put these on a cake circle too (for more stability).

You'll also want to smooth out all the frosting and fill in any gaps between layers.

Next comes the fondant. I didn't get any pictures of the process, mainly because I was using big pieces of fondant and it took both myself and my husband to get the pieces on smoothly and without them falling off.

Putting the big pieces of fondant on was...not easy. If I had been smart, I would have done skinny long strips instead of trying to put the fondant on in just two pieces.

So here's the cake partway into the fondant process.

You can see it's already started to lean. I think my problem was a little too much buttercream frosting. But at this point, it was late, I was tired, and I was NOT going to start all over.

Here are the arms - no pics of that process either. My rice kripies didn't turn out the best and I didn't want his arms falling apart before we actually had the party. That's why they're laying next to him instead of propped up.

Also, I was going to paint the whole thing silver, but I forgot the dust stuff while I was at the store, it was too late to go back to Michaels to get some, and I just wanted to be done.

What do you think? I LOVE baking and making cakes and this was my 3rd attempt at a big, fondant covered cake. I've also done a Lightning McQueen replica (for Andyroo) and a Dora cake (for my neice). Maybe I'll have to post about those sometime too.

I'm also preparing to do a Thomas the Train cake next month for Andyroo's 3rd birthday. Be sure to come back and check out all the fun Thomas stuff I'll be doing for his party.

And if you ever make your own R2D2, I'd love to see it!!!

We're linking up with these super awesome parties:

Whatever Goes Wednesday, Idea Sharing Wednseday, What I Made Wednesday, Creative-ly U, Feature Yourself Friday, Just Something I Whipped UpLovely Little Linkup, Craftastic Monday, Woot Woot Wednesday, Our House of Joyful Noise, Strut Your Stuff, Get Your Craft On

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Thomas the Train - Redone

Remember the Train Canvases I made a while back? Yeah. I've discovered that the Silhouette Vinyl just is not meant to be used on the textured canvas. Not that I added any texture to it, but the regular old canvas is just too textured to get a good stick. The light blue vinyl was the worst. It started peeling off first and then basically it just all fell off. I eventually just took it off and Andyroo only had James and Percy in his room.

So I decided to take another route. Going with something that needed to be removable (because we're renting) and movable (so we can take it with us when we eventually move), I decided I liked the idea of piecing it together in some frames.

MUCH better!!

I still used the vinyl (because I had all the colors and didn't have the color in papers - no black or gold, gasp!), but you could use paper or fabric or anything you want.

Monday, July 25, 2011

How to Get Soft, Smooth Feet

I don't know about you, but my feet are not the prettiest thing. They can be downright embarrassing sometimes!  I don't enjoy looking at them. I try and keep my toenails painted so that they look a little nicer, but I live in Utah and spend about 9 months of the year wearing socks. What's the point when no one sees them, right?

The main reason I don't enjoy my feet - the rough, callousy skin. But, I've figured out how to change that by doing two simple things.
  1. Use a Foot File when your feet are clean and dry (not wet). Invest in a good foot file. I tried a generic one, but it did not do so well. The one I currently use is the PedEgg Pro with a Handle. I'll admit, I was a little apprehensive about this. I thought it was going to hurt and rip off my skin or something painful like that. But it doesn't hurt at all! If you haven't ever tried one of these things, you definitely should. I usually have to use my PedEgg about once every 2 or 3 months. And I love that it had a longer handle - it just makes the whole process easier. Use your foot file when your feet are dry - not wet. Before using a foot file, I was using this pumice stone type thing in the shower - and it did NOTHING! Let's face it, dry skin just comes off easier when your skin is dry, not wet.
  2. Immediately after using your foot file, slather on some lotion and wear some socks. The lotion helps moisturize your skin and the socks help keep that moisture in and protect the new skin on your feet.
Do you have any secret tips for getting soft, smooth feet? Please feel free to share with us!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

FHE Idea - Families can be Together Forever

Following with the theme of temples this month, I thought it might be a good idea to focus more on how the temple binds us together.

Oquirrh Mountain Temple Sealing Room

Song: Families can be Together Forever (Children's Songbook #188 or Hymns #300) (Download the song as an mp3 here or find the words and music here)

Scripture: D&C 132: 19-20

Lesson Ideas:
  • Discuss your own wedding day with your children. Dust off your wedding pictures and find any others of parents, siblings, etc. If you were married in the temple, talk about why you chose to be married there instead of civilly. Discuss what blessings you have received because of that decision. Were there any hardships you had to overcome because of it (family not able to attend, temple far away, etc) If you weren't married in the temple (whether you were sealed later or not) discuss your choice with your children. Were you not net a member of the church, was the temple too far away at the time, etc. If you were sealed after being married civilly then discuss what was necessary to take that step (waiting period, saving money to travel to the temple, etc)
  • If your children have ever attended a civil marriage or even a reception for someone who was married in the temple and are old enough to remember it, try comparing and contrasting the two ceremonies. If you have been married in the temple, you might explain the basics about the temple ceremony (kneeling at the alter, no processional, etc).
  • Find a copy of "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" and read it aloud with your children. You can find an inexpensive copy at the Church Distribution Center or print one out from the internet at the link provided. Help your children understand the meaning and impact of it. If they're old enough, consider having them sign it as an agreement to uphold the things it discusses. After it's been signed by the family, consider framing or displaying it in your house as a reminder.
  • Consider watching this video about how families can be together forever (direct link to video on 
  • Here are a few General Conference talks that you might consider reading through beforehand to gain a better understanding or to even read in your FHE:

Do you have any other ideas to teach your children about the eternal nature of families! Please share!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Our Favorite Products - Tresemme Climate Control Hair Spray

This stuff is AMAZING! I've never loved a hair product this much before. When I was younger, I used to babysit for this lady who was always complaining about how companies were changing and discontinuing products that she really loved and I never quite got why she was so upset. I totally get it now! My worst fear (besides losing my teeth and my child) is that Tresemme will discontinue their climate control line. I'm half tempted to seriously stock up so I'm never left without my favorite hair spray. I may or may not have 5 bottles in my pantry right now. I'm really not a brand snob either. The only other thing I'm this passionate about is the brand of peanut butter I'll eat. It's Skippy or nothing at all.

So why is this product so great? I don't really care about the frizz control, UV and humidity protection, or anything else that this product touts. I love this product simply because it holds my style all day long. Without fail.

My hair is very thin and fine. It's limp and sometimes stringy. I need all the help I can get. I won't lie - I back comb my hair to get a little volume. It's not because all the women in Utah do it. Really, almost no one else I know (besides the women in my family) actually back comb anymore. I don't go overboard though. But every other hair spray I've tried fails to hold the back combing. After even just a couple of hours, my hair is starting to go limp and flat again. Not cool!

But Tresemme's Climate Control Hairspray is there all day - wind, rain, or snow. Andyroo can throw his blanket on my head and I don't have to carefully peel the blanket away in hopes of saving what little volume is left in my hair.

This stuff is awesome! For me, a little sustained volume is all it takes to make me happy. I feel more confident and beautiful when I don't have to worry so much about my hair!

Is there a product you just can't live without! Let us know!

(This review was uncompensated. I'm simply sharing my love for a wonderful product!)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Quiet Book Page #3 - Barn & Finger Puppets

Remember the Quite Book Overview I did a while back? I'm going through the book page by page and explaining in more detail how I did everything and linking to any patterns that I used. Be sure to check out the other quiet book pages and the Quiet Book FAQ!

Quiet Book Page #1 - Train Tracks
Quiet Book Page #2 - Shapes and Colors

Up today is the Barn & Finger Puppets page! I think this might be my favorite page. So happy and cute!

I'd love to say this was my idea, but it most definitely was not. The idea and the template come from Homemade by Jill. Isn't she awesome!?

I did change a few things. Instead of ribbon for the outlining on the doors and around the barn, I just used more felt. I also added a couple of animals to the mix. She has patterns for the the cow, pig, and chicken. I also made a horse (which routinely gets called a dog but Andyroo) and a duck.

The barn doors open to reveal the animals hiding inside!

Be sure to check out the other templates over at Homemade by Jill to see if there are any others you'd like to use. As fun as it is to create your own, why go to the all the trouble if someone already has a pattern for you to use. Anything to make this process easier.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Customized Wipes Container

As part of the Baby Boy Gift Basket that I'm doing, I made a coordinating wipes container to match the basket liner.

I've seen a few customized wipes containers floating around in blog land. I love this idea over at Junk in their Trunk. She painted and modpodged paper onto a wipes container.

I also really liked this Wipes Band idea from Less Cake {more frosting}.

But, I didn't have the really wide elastic and I wanted to make something to coordinate with the basket liner (LINK TO POST) I made to go in the gift basket. I decided I wanted to use the same fabric and dress (or boy) it up a little bit. The main reason for customizing this case though....

Pretty insane, right? I found this wipes container clearance at Walmart for like $0.75. This was before Andyroo decided to potty train, so I grabbed it thinking we would surely use it.

Nope! And now I have this cute (if you like Nemo) but kind of hideous container of wipes that needed to be used. Andyroo tore the plastic off while we were walking through the store and I couldn't stand the thought of these drying out and going to waste. I couldn't just stick them in with a baby gift like this.

Because of the mistake I made with the basket liner, I didn't have a piece of material long enough to go completely around the wipes case, so I had to use two pieces. One went over the back of the wipes case (it was about 9 or 10 inches) and the other went around the front and sides (it was about 17 or 18 inches long). You'll want to measure the wipes container you're working with in order to get an accurate measurement.

I wanted a finished edge, so I hemmed the edge of the material. My wipes container measured about 3 3/4" tall, so I cut my pieces about 4 3/4" and turned up about 1/2 on both the top and the bottom.

For the short piece on the back, I didn't worry about finishing the short sides, but for the long piece, I also turned in about 1/2 inch to give the seam a more finished look. The picture above is of the longer front piece.

After the two pieces were hemmed, I hot glued the back piece onto the wipes case first.

Then I also hot glued the front piece around the rest of the case. I'm all about symmetry, so I found the middle of the front piece and centered it on the wipes case so that they fell evenly on the back of the wipes case. The front piece overlapped the back piece by about an inch on each side.

No more Nemo!

I added a little flair to the wipes case so that it wasn't quite so boring. Nothing much, just a little (manly) ribbon.

We're linking up with these super awesome parties:

Whatever Goes Wednesday, Idea Sharing Wednseday, What I Made Wednesday, Creative-ly U, Feature Yourself Friday, Just Something I Whipped Up, Frugal FridayDIY Under $5, Lovely Little Linkup, Craftastic Monday, Woot Woot Wednesday, Strut Your Stuff, Our House of Joyful Noise, Get You Craft On, Wow Me Wednesday, Lovely Crafty Weekend, Weekend Wrap Up

Quiet Book Page #2 - Shapes & Colors

Remember the Quite Book Overview I did a while back? I'm going through the book page by page and explaining in more detail how I did everything and linking to any patterns that I used. Be sure to check out the other quiet book pages and the Quiet Book FAQ!

Quiet Book Page #1 - Train Tracks
Quiet Book Page #3 - Barn & Finger Puppets

Today's quiet book page is the Shapes and Colors page. It's good practice for matching colors, shapes, and fine motor skills (I used snaps to keep the matches together)

I drew my own shapes on paper, then cut them out and used them as patterns for the felt shapes. You can do whatever shapes you want in whatever colors you want.

You'll need to cut 2 of each shape - one to go on the page and one to go on the match. To add some stability and strength so the snaps aren't pulled out of the felt, I sewed the shapes onto the flannel page, then sewed the snaps on through both the felt and the flannel.

After the shapes and snaps were on the page, I sewed the other side of the snaps onto the matches. I was going to leave it like this, but I wanted the pieces to be a little stronger. I also didn't like the look of the stitches showing through the backside of the loose shapes. Instead of trying to cut out a 3rd set of shapes and getting them to match up, I simply pinned them to a bigger piece of the same color felt and sewed around the shape. Then I cut out the shape! Easy peasy.

You could also just start by cutting out 3 of each shape and stitching two of them together with a whip stitch or blanket stitch.

I also think I should have used a bigger snap. Andyroo still has a little trouble getting them to snap together. He can match them easily, but he doesn't always get the snap together. I think if it were a little bit bigger, he would have an easier time. Just something for him to grow into, I guess.

Any questions?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Quiet Book Page #1 - Train Tracks

Remember the Quite Book Overview I did a while back? I'm going through the book page by page and explaining in more detail how I did everything and linking to any patterns that I used. Be sure to check out the other quiet book pages that will follow through the next couple of weeks!

Quiet Book Page #2 - Shapes & Colors
Quiet Book Page #3 - Barn & Finger Puppets

Also, be sure to check out the Quiet Book FAQ to answer some general questions about putting a quiet book together.

I think the train tracks are Andyroo's favorite page to play with. I told him I was making some train tracks for his quiet book and he was so excited. He kept asking me when it would be done so he could play with it.

I designed the two pages in Silhouette Studio then got to work cutting everything out. The tracks were cut out of the Silhouette brown heat transfer material and the rest of the images were done with ink jet transfer paper from Joann's (also found at any craft/hobby store). To use the inkjet transfer paper, I simply sent the design to my inkjet printer, cut them out, and ironed them on. Soooo easy!

After the design was ironed on, I took 2 little train buttons and 1 little boat button and tied them to the middle ring with some embroidery floss. However, I've found that this isn't the best way to do it. Everything gets all tangled and is a pain to undo. But I have yet to think of a better way. Any ideas?

The trains and boat were leftover buttons from the I-Spy bag I made before our Iowa trip. There's enough length to move the trains all around the tracks, but not so much that they're a choking hazard.

Put in some grommets and stick the pages in your book. Using the same heat transfer idea, I'm also planning on doing a road page for some extra truck and car buttons I have leftover.

If you have any questions, let me know. I'd be happy to answer them!

Product Review - Suave Dry Shampoo

A while back, I participated in one of Suave's Facebook promotions and received a coupon for a free Suave Professionals product. I was excited about it (who doesn't love FREE) and decided to try out the new Dry Shampoo.

It's been sitting on my shelf for almost 2 months now. I've been a little intimidated to use it. I didn't want to use it and then have it not work and be left with yucky hair for the day. I finally decided to just try it. I was headed out to run some errands with my mom, Hubs had to get ready for work to leave around the same time we were, and I didn't want to wake up super early to get ready to run some Saturday errands. I enjoy my sleep way too much.

My Hair: Very thin and fine. Cut to about chin length; modified A-line with shorter layers in the back. Typically gets pretty greasy if it isn't washed daily (And believe me, I've tried going without washing for a 2nd day. No thank you!)

My Review:
Initially, I was impressed with the way the product worked. For me, there was no powdery substance left on my hair, though it did seem to dull my hair a bit. The can said to use the heat from my hand to rub it in. I tried and it still looked a little dull. Not a deal breaker.

I didn't go overboard using this product. My hair is already thin and fine and I didn't want it to wind up looking yucky. I used it on key places in my hair - my top part, around my face, throughout my bangs, around my neck line, and in a few spots throughout my hair. My face can get pretty oily, so my bangs and my face were what I was really worried about.

Immediately after spraying, the greasy look and feel went away. Despite adding more product to my hair (I already had hair spray and volumizer from the day before), I didn't feel like it was weighted down. In fact, I think it helped restore some volume. That's a plus for me. I'll take all the volume I can get (since I have no natural volume)!

After spraying the dry shampoo, I went ahead and styled it just as I normally would. I used my straightener to get some of the wrinkles out and to add a little shape (curl under) to the end of my hair. I also back combed a bit and pulled my bangs back to the side.

For most of the day, my hair was fine. However, around 5 or 6, my hair started to feel really heavy and...gross (I don't know if that's the right term) again. Then it started to get clumpy and my scalp started to get itchy soon after. After two days of not washing my hair, I usually start to get a little itch from all the oil and product build up, so that wasn't really a surprise.

When it came time to wash my hair the next morning (I don't think I'll ever try this as a 3+ day shampoo), I washed my hair twice in order to feel like it was completely clean and that I wouldn't have any residue left.

Bottom Line: I'll use this product again. Not on a regular basis and not if I'm going to be out and about all day. I think it might be better suited (for me) as something to get rid of some of the oils if Hubs and I are going out on a date and I need to freshen up my look. 

(This post was non-compensated. I did receive a free coupon to try a Suave Professionals product, however this review was not part of the offer. I simply thought other mom's out there might like a review of this kind of product!)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Another Basket Liner Redo

I have another friend who just had a baby and I wanted to do a gift basket for her also. The last basket I created was rectangular, so I decided to go for a challenge and found a round basket that needed a liner! What do you think?

Because this basket has kind of a lip on the outside, I decided to use a little elastic to keep the liner around the basket. Can you see the lip that I'm talking about?

I started by tracing the bottom of the basket on some tissue paper. Cut out the circle, and you'll have a pattern for the bottom of your basket. Something like this.

Cut one out of your material. I'm using a printed snuggle flannel, by the way. It was a remnant from Joann's that was given to me by the lady who gave me my sewing machine.

Also, the first way I did this was a fail. But first, I'll show you how I ended up doing it. The circumference of the basket was about 47 inches. I also measured the height of the basket - from the bottom up to the underside of the lip of the basket. Mine ended up being around 9 inches. So I cut two pieces that were about 11 inches tall and about 30 inches wide. I debated on whether I should have that much in the width of the material, but after you see my mistake, you'll understand why I went with that much material. I also really quite liked the finished product. So in the end, I'm glad I stuck with the 30 inch (60 inches total) width.

Pin the two pieces (the 11"x30") with right sides together and sew up the short sides so that when you open it, it makes a circle.

This is the long piece folded up
After you've sewn the sides together, you'll want to make a casing for the elastic on one of the long sides. I was working with pretty small elastic - 1/4", I think. Unless you have a patterned material that needs to be one way, it doesn't really matter which side you put the casing on. Make sure to leave an opening so that you can put the elastic in later. The side with the casing will be the top of the liner.

At this point, don't put the elastic in yet. Instead, you'll need to gather the bottom of the long pieces so that it will fit your bottom circle. I used my sewing machine to make the gathering stitch. Pin the bottom circle and the gathered side together.

Sew these two pieces together carefully being sure not to catch any extra of the bottom or side pieces in your stitching. I may or may not have accidentally done that.

Once those two pieces are sewn together, you can put the elastic into the casing on the top. I know there are lots of ways to do this, but I just took a safety pin and attached it to one end of the elastic and started pulling it through the casing. That's the way I learned years ago in a Home Ec class! After it's through, sew the ends of the elastic together then finish the casing.

To keep the elastic from rolling, I sewed the elastic down in a few places after it was in the casing. I picked about 4 or 5 places and just did a simple straight stitch across the width of the elastic and casing.

Put it in your basket and admire your hard work!

Now, what NOT to do...

I had the brilliant idea of trying to taper the liner so it was more fitted to the basket. Apparently I didn't have the right equation (I've been watching Numbers on Netflix) because it did NOT fit.

Luckily I tested it out before I attached the bottom! I'm not sure if I needed to add more height or width to the material or if I just shouldn't have tapered it quite so much. I don't know where my math went wrong, but that's why I decided that more was better for the second try. So, this is a perfect example of trying things out as you work to make sure that things fit properly. I would have been so upset and I would have had to start completely over if I hadn't checked.

I'll be using this basket for another baby gift, so check back and see how it turns out. I'll also be using this same material to cute-ify a wipes case, so check back for that tutorial too!
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