Best Valentine’s Date You Will Ever Have

I hear you, mom… 

It’s been a long day…week…month…year…decade…

I know. Been there. I’m writing this post for you during what I think I will someday refer to as my restful season…its Springtime in 2015…for you to read around Valentines Day next year… Or the year after… Or in 50 years of my simple little blog remains beyond my years…
I won’t get mushy or go into a long spiel about what you feel or what I feel or you should feel or what he or you or whoever should or shouldn’t.
My best advice in my still learning but been in this game for quite some time wisdom… just be. Enjoy what is in front of you… don’t expect your moments to look like a reality show or a fairy tale or something from a movie. Don’t expect to have the best story of your significant other did for you on such and such special occasion.
Don’t put that kind of pressure on yourself or on anyone else that you care about. The best part of the story is the part you can’t share. You can’t describe. Who cares if you didn’t go out on Valentine’s Day? I’m not big on crowds and showy things anyway… if you are … no offense … embrace it, enjoy it, and have a blast!  I’d rather have a night out on the town on Tuesday when the streets are quiet but things are still going on that no one else can see.
If it’s just you without the kiddos or if you just loathe some particular holiday for whatever reason (I’ve heard a lot of reasons…), grab a book or catch a movie or something… Work a few extra hours … Take a bath… Hang out with a friend… Go shopping… Or go do something most people won’t do on whatever day it might be. Just be. Be you. Be awesome.
imageOn Valentine’s Day this year, we didn’t even attempt to get a babysitter or go out – we grabbed a heart shaped pizza and pulled out the linens and China. And maybe you can see just a glimpse of our awesome. It lasted less than an hour. But the story in my head and heart will be for always and I hope that the littles will always remember it, too. I can’t tell you that story and I can’t tell you about the little piece of my heart that is not at that table, but blessedly just a phone call away… All I can tell you is to stop for. Just a few minutes and enjoy what is right in front of you…   Much love – XOXO – C

The Mercy Seat

*I tend to have epiphanies and completely random thoughts that I would like to share with my small readership.  I hope that you take something from them that fills your soul with peace and joy.

In Chapter 25 of Exodus, God describes to Moses how the Israelites are to build the Ark of the Covenant. All of the measurements and details are given in great detail – I won’t go into that except to say this:

God has ideas bigger than ours.  I often wonder why we need such details.  He has his reasons, and I don’t question them.  Occasionally, I have a life moment that teaches me ‘why’ He wants it this way or that.  Sometimes, I just let it be.  So many things to focus on in a day, God can take care of my details for sure.  I do have another passage that I’ll share with on the topic of details another day.

So, here we go-

…Make one cherub at the one end, and one cherub at the other; of one piece with the mercy seat you shall make the cherubim at its two ends.  The Cherubim shall spread out their wings above, overshadowing the mercy seat with their wings.  They shall face one to another; the faces of the cherubim of the cherubim shall be turned toward toward the mercy seat.  You shall put the the mercy seat on the top of the ark; and in the ark you shall put the covenant that I shall give you.  There I will meet with you…   — Exodus 25:17-22

Verse 22 goes on to speak to Moses about God delivering instructions for the Isrealites – but that’s where I stopped reading – and just drew in a breath – and, yes, breathed in Jesus.  I have read that passage so many times.  And all I saw was God telling Moses what to tell the Israelites to do…

Hello.  Hear this, my loves – It’s called the MERCY SEAT.  The Seat of Mercy.  Do you know what mercy is?  Really? Read each defininition:

1       a :  compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one’s power;also :  lenient or compassionate treatment <begged for mercy>
b :  imprisonment rather than death imposed as penalty for first-degree murder
2       a :  a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassionb :  a fortunate circumstance <it was a mercy they found her before she froze>
3:  compassionate treatment of those in distress <works of mercy among the poor>
   – Taken from right here: Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary

Now,  Let that sink in for just a moment.

At the Mercy Seat.

 Where He sits with us. 


God’s got this, y’all.




She had her frozen party.

Sorry, I don’t have many pictures –

I can say she had a blast.  And loved it all.

We did ‘melted icycles’ (blue powerade) in fancy plastic champagne cups,

blue popcorn, blue cupcakes, and some fun little decorations.

We didn’t go overboard…she played at the park with her friends and had a wonderful time.

And now she’s five.

The dress… found a perfect pattern over here at Peek-a-Boo Designs – it’s free to download — The pattern is a perfect size 4T – fit my little one perfectly – check the length before you do a elsadressfinal cut/hem to the skirt – if your little ice queen is a tall one, you may want a couple more inches on that.

Here are my little alterations – If you are comfortable with a machine and the fabrics you are using try them out! My way, or the Peek-a-Boo way, you are going to come out with a great dress!  Enjoy!

  • I used knits – because they are more comfortable to wear for children than itchy costumes and, I hope, will hold up better.
  • I only did have the width of the skirt – wanted less of a  poofy look for this one – had I thought of it, I may have extended the bodice down and made it a full dress without the waist band – if that makes sense?  I think that would work pretty easily…who knows? Maybe I’ll try that again someday.
  • I had a thick polyestery chiffony fabric I grabbed at Goodwill – So I didn’t use tulle.  I folded each outer edge into the center where they met in the middle. Hope that makes sense?
  • I also sewed the cape in between the bodice and ‘undershirt’ rather than adding the strip to cover it.  You may kind of have had to have done something like this before to know what I mean, but even if not… I’m sure you can figure it out – takes a little sew, flip, sew again kinda trick. I like the way it layed with that. Not sure I would have bothered with tulle – as it will all fluff up and be awesome any way you sew it ;).
  • I had to add a strip across the back to keep it from falling off of her shoulders.  So, maybe make the ‘scoop’ a little more shallow?

Alterations or not, it is a great pattern and if you’re looking for a simple way to put together a Frozen, Ice Queen, or just a pretty princess dress – this is a good one.  Highly recommend!  Happy Sewing!


Stop pouring money down the drain….


Jet Dry is my favorite rinse aid. I’ve tried the others. It just works best for me. What I hate, though, is how much I spill every time I add it to the dishwasher. Wonder if that was planned in the package design?  Who knows. Either way, I fixed it. No long drawn out post necessary – just a simple solution to one of life’s little nuisances.

You’re welcome.

image image

Please label your new container and make sure the little ones can reach it!  It’s an awfully tempting one! 

Save not only time, but MONEY with on demand grocery shopping.

Save Time & Money – Five (seriously) Easy Steps.

I’m going to make this short and sweet – cause it’s really just that easy. Couponers, you may not do this – but it might at least help you comparison shop and allow you to have your sale items and stuff that just doesn’t have coupons delivered – so, less shopping. More play time. Who doesn’t love that?

I used to coupon – I admire those that do – sometimes I still clip a few…but I found myself spending way too much time clipping and printing and searching and cutting and organizing. Because I couldn’t do it halfway. It was all or none. Those that can manage it better than I, keep rolling – you’re a rock star.

Here’s how you are going to do it:

  1. First thing you need to do is sign up. You’ll get a shiptrewardcredit for $10 when you use the link. (You’re welcome.)
  2. Second, create your shopping cart in the app.
  3. Third, shop another store  FROM your shopping cart. Compare prices as you go. If it’s cheaper, get it and remove from your cart. (Pick the store that saves you the most money, or visit 2-3 – I picked 1 because the point here is to save money AND time)
  4. Fourth, on your way to check out at your last stop, submit your order and have the rest of your groceries delivered.
  5. Go home – unload your car, and any minute your Shopper will arrive with the rest of your groceries.

It’s that easy, y’all. Seriously.

I found that many of the items that I normally would purchase elsewhere were actually cheaper at Publix, probably saved about $20 by ordering those products rather than purchasing them at the first store.  Maybe next time I’ll give you a comparison price list?

So, ready to sign up? Hopefully, you have a service available in your area –
I use Shipt – on Demand Grocery Delivery Service. This is available in Nashville, Dallas, Tampa, and Birmingham. They are always expanding to new cities. Keep your eyes for a launch in your area and be sure to sign up when it gets there!

This is an unsolicited post written to share with you Shipt’s amazing service.  I am receiving no compensation for writing this post.  When you click the link above, you and I BOTH will receive a $10 gift from Shipt (see more details by clicking the link).

Chalkboard Key Rack

Had lots of fun making this one – it’s been one of those things I stared at for a really long time with plans for my house – but what I had it mind just didn’t work for my space, so I made something for you – wish I had a kitchen wall big enough for it!

Chalkboard Key Rack

Chalkboard Key RackChalkboard Key Rack

It can be yours  – Just visit Etsy.

Name Brand vs Store Brand…

We all know that some store brands are name brands in disguise… But I never bothered to really research which is which… I pulled out some Publix Butter this morning…only had two sticks (the icing calls for three- yep that’s right) so I grabbed some more – had some Prairie Farms butter in the fridge … And …well… Huh… Same package, same plant… So there you go…  


And just in case any one is interested – here’s the best frosting ever that calls for three sticks of butter #you knowyouwantsome

This is my third time making it and it is the bomb diggity!

No Sew T Shirt to Dress – again!

We did it again!  Because there are just far too many adorable little sisters rooting for their big brothers –  

Angelstshirtdress    Angelsshirtdress2

This little cutie has a brother playing for the As – so I scrounged up some t shirts in the right color, pulled up a comfy chair at baseball practice and starting snipping…shout out to my baseball moms for your input!

So, here’s how you get there – 

Choose your shirts – the bodice shirt should be a good imagefit or close to – it’s ok if it’s a little baggy – but if it’s too big, you’ll need to go a different route with this – which could also be done without sewing – comment if you do, and I’ll help you get there 🙂 – but let’s stay focused…

The how to is a bit wordy – it’s really easy and quick, though, promise 😉

Take your t-shirt that you will use for the skirt part of the dress and chop it off – just below the armpit.  Don’t worry about the length for now.

Cut a long strip off the top about 1-2 inches wide – what you will do here is start, circle around once (only cutting through one layer at a time) – don’t meet your starting cut with your finishing cut – you are going to taper down a little and go around the shirt again so that your ‘ribbon’ is three to four times the circumference of the shirt – you need a long enough strand to wrap around the waist of the child and tie bow, one strand to go around the imageneckline and tie a bow, and two strands long enough to go around the arm holes and bows on the shoulder.  If anyone needs help with that, I will gladly do that again and get a better visual of that for you.  I’m sure that I can find a reason to do this again :)…

You can cut a little length off the top of your skirt, or save that until the end and cut length off the bottom.  Raw edges are good…

Cut the neck-band and sleeves off of your bimageodice  shirt. You can also cut the hem off  so that you will have a raw edge.  If your shirt is bigger, cut the shirt to length you want it…

Cut horizontal slits in at the bottom of your bodice, and coordinating slits at the top of your skirt.  It’s probably ok if they are vertical slits, but less chance of ripping with horizontal.  Your slits should be just wide enough to slip the ‘ribbon’ through, and mine were about 2-3 inches apart from each other.

Turn your ‘skirt’ inside out, tuck it inside the bodice, so the top raw edge of the skirt meets the bottom raw edge of the bodice.  It’s wrong in the first picture – that’s how I started (right side to wrong side), but changed my mind.  So, you can see what not to do :).  For yours, wrong sides should be together. The wrong sides (like the second picture) together creates a cute little trim/gather when you are finished…

image image

Start in one of your front center slits (I had them slightly off-center, so the bow will fall in the center.  Thread your ribbon in first so there is a strand hanging out the front. Thread alternating in and out until you meet back up in the front to tie a bow – if you end up a slit short – just snip another one :).  Gather a bit, and tie your bow.  You can adjust the gather once you put it on your ‘lil sis.

Moving on to the bodice –  This part is completely optional – you can leave them raw with imageno embellishment – but adding the ‘ribbon’ adds a little more character and allows for a
better and more customized fit –

For the neck – cut slits around the neckline (parallel to the edge – I’d say horizontal, but it curves…so ya know – go along the edge about an inch or so in from the edge.  I put my bow in the back (ADORABLE) because my shirt was so busy in the front.

For the arm holes – cut slits around the open arm holes, again parallel to the edge.  I put my bows a the top of the shoulder.

If you run out of ‘ribbon’, just cut another strip from the skirt.

My dress was made for a little one that wears a size 18 m, so I didn’t even try to make it a full length dress – because, well…that doesn’t work so great with all the climbing around at the ball park.  If you do care to sew, you can even use your discarded sleeves to make some shorts or bloomers.  I didn’t do that this time around.

I gave sweet little A’s Mama the left over  scraps from the shirts, and she tied them up into a perfectly awesome southern bow.  And I knew she would – cause she’s one of my go to gals for bows.  Didn’t she do a great job? And doesn’t she make beautiful babies?


Super Hero Set

So, forever ago I pinned these super hero templates from Martha Stewart…it seems to be a very popular pin – I guess Super Heroes just never go out of syle!

Anywho, I tweaked them a bit – changed the sizes, made some templates of my own, and got rollin – the kiddos are absolutely overjoyed – they don’t want to take them off!


That was my fun sewing last week – jump in make some for your favorite supers, or if your not feeling so crafty, I’d be more than happy to make you one or two or twelve –

These are listed in my Square Shop (look under Gifts & Novelty Items) and on Etsy.

If you make some, I’d love to see!

No Sew T Shirt to Dress

It took me longer to write this tutorial than to make the dress – no joke.

Give it a shot!

First, grab your supplies –  I started with a youth size medium sleeveless racerback T shirt – this will work with any sleeveless shirt with a binding.  We’ll try it with a regular t shirt next time…

You will also need –

  • IMG_1753Scissors or a seam ripper
  • About 3 – 3.5 yards of ribbon (1/8″ is easy to pull through – you could go up to 1/2″)
  • A Bodkin (this is a sewing tool used for threading elastic and turning things – mine is ball point) or a safety pin small enough to fit into the binding.  Make sure it’s nice and sturdy.

Grab  your scissors and start snipping:

No Sew Shirt to dress

Now grab your ribbon and bodkin or safety pin:

No Sew T shirt dress ribbon threading

A few close ups of the Ribbon Threading to help you along:

And there you go! Pull your ribbons through and tie off as desired, trim to the length you like.  I found it best to make sure the shirt is gathered in the front and not in the back – it will lay better that way.

Embellish your dress, and make it awesome! Here is ours finished (though as of yet unadorned) – best pictures I could get with my ‘I’m not so much in the mood for this right now’ model –


Hope you enjoy – Happy NO SEWING!!!!!