Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘thrifting’ Category

I’ve finally found my groove when it comes to thrifting in Texas. It takes more work than it did in Washington, but I’ve found a few great stores. Yesterday I went thrifting with a friend and found lots of wonderful things. Also, some really, really terrible things. As in this:

Sorry for the crappy camera phone photo… who knew there would be something so wonderfully ugly that I would need photo evidence to show my discovery to others?

But as I said, I found a ton of great stuff, the kids and I both got new clothes and I got a bunch of items for my newest project. It’s an Etsy shop called Pecae, Love and Tickles. I am going to be devoting my shop entirely to items made with repurposed materials, mostly kids clothes but whatever I am inspired to make with what I find. I am super excited. I’ll update as I get set up. I am really excited about this as it not only gives me a creative outlet but makes old things new again and saves them from the landfill. If you’ve read this blog much you know that’s something I care about very, very much.

I’ve found some really wonderful materials to work with and I can’t wait to get sewing. I’ll have some really fun items made quickly. I am going to wait a bit before I post them on Etsy, but I’ll share them here as I go.

In other news, we’ve really started to love our local library. Well technically, it’s not “our” library. The one in our town sucks. But the one eight miles down the road is great. Totally worth the drive for ten times the kids books. Keagan and Eden love the place.  We went this morning, Keagan picked out 17 new books to read and we read half of them before lunch. Which I dubbed “rock star lunch” because Keagan said he wanted to have a rock star dance party. He ate those veggies up so fast just because they were “rock star” veggies. I am filing that one away for the days he won’t eat.

Off to enjoy what’s left of naptime 🙂

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

I have yet to really decorate the house we’re living in now. You know, the one we moved into in March. I think that has something to do with the fact that Texas hasn’t felt like home. I love this house… Texas, I am still working on. But I am not helping myself by keeping my house bland. So I am going to start making some things for our home and start looking for some 2nd hand frames, prints and other decor.

Anyone have any advice on decorating on a budget with thrifted/ handmade items? I’ll hit up etsy.com too, but I am so impatient, I want this house beautiful yesterday!

I’ve also decided I need to get out and explore the Dallas area more. I am sure I would like it here better if I did. I want to start doing some day hikes. We’ll have to drive a ways for this, but I miss nature. In Washington state, where I am from, the nature is mixed right in with the city, at least more so than here. I miss all the tall trees and the beautiful Puget Sound. I am sure if I look, I will find the beauty here in Texas.

My kids are growing way too fast. Sweet little Eden is 15 months old now! Keagan is changing so much… every day he reminds me that he is not my baby anymore, but a big, smart boy who has a mind of his own!

Anyway, I will be updating on my decorating adventures. Hopefully with some photos of my no longer drab house!

Read Full Post »

became one hat, one pair of pants and one pair of mittens last night 🙂

Eden thinks the hat is better as a toy.

Keagan, however, won’t take his mittens off.

Read Full Post »

For the next two weeks Keagan’s homeschool theme is Halloween. We started today and we’re both already having a lot of fun!

Since we’re still going to do some letter work the next two weeks, we started with an “h” collage this morning.  Then we read three books to fit our letter theme, “Harry Hungry!” by Stephen Salerno, “Hippos Go Berserk” by Sandra Boynton (one of our favorite authors around here!) and “Halloween Kitten” by Mary Packard. The latter we found at the thrift shop for only a quarter- and it still had two sheets of stickers in it. I used it  as an into our Halloween activities.  After we finished the book, I wrote “Happy Halloween” on orange construction paper and Keagan used the stickers from the book to make a collage.  He loves sticker collages, but we don’t do them often as I think stickers are pretty wasteful. But hey, they came with the book, so we went for it. 🙂

After that, I cut some ghost shapes out. Keagan glued them on to black construction paper and then drew faces on them. I think they came out pretty cute. I’m also really happy that he’s stopped being afraid of ghosts. I contribute this to another thrift store find, a copy of “Gus was a Friendly Ghost” by Jane Thayer.  He’s insisted that I read it to him every day, several times a day since we picked it up last week.

IMG_0828

After that, we made a paper chain as a countdown to Halloween. Keagan loves to use gluesticks, so this was great for him.We talked about how we’d rip one link off every night from now until Halloween and then he’d go trick or treating. I explained to him that he’d dress up and get candy for the faeries and he’d get a gift the next day. He said “that’s right, Mama,” so I guess he’s on board with the idea of swapping candy for whatever a faerie might bring him.

IMG_0827

He’s napping now, but later on I am sure we’ll be back at it. I’d like to come up with a baking/cooking project he can help with that actually looks Halloween-y. I am not sure if we’ll come by it. We recently had dairy added to the list of things he can’t eat (a food already avoided for the household, but not strictly restricted previously for Keagan) and it seems that so many of the cutesy Halloween foods use cream cheese or sour cream etc. Maybe I can make goat’s cheese work.

Homeschooling has become so much fun with a holiday theme. I can’t wait for Christmastime. I am thinking all of December will be devoted to Christmas. There’s just so many possibilities and since we get to make our own timeline at home, I think we should embrace the joy of the season.

Well off to enjoy what’s left of naptime with my very awake six month old. I’ll leave you with Keagan’s art wall, something of which he’s oh so very proud.

IMG_0830

Read Full Post »

I’ll be making the kids’ Halloween costumes this weekend and thought I would share what I’m doing.

Eden is a princess or a ballerina or whatever pretty little being wears a tutu. I am making it out of tulle from a tutu I wore when I danced as a teenager. Yes, awkward Stephenie danced and it was probably hilarious. I had fun and that’s what really matters, right? So I am repurposing my old tutu and making it into one for my sweet Eden. I am making it with a Ribbon waistband in hopes that it lasts awhile because I am sure that as soon as she is old enough to get it, she will want to twirl around in it!

Here’s the video for the tutorial I am using.

Keagan’s costume, I am making up as I go. He’s going to be a doggie. I am going to sew some felt spots and ears on to a hooded sweat shirt from the thrift shop. If I am feeling super lazy, I may just use iron on adhesive or fabric glue. I may just be that lazy because I am not all that into Halloween and have both in my craft closet.

I’ll post photos when I have our costumes all finished and on my very cute models. 🙂

We’ll be attending a “Green Halloween” event with the Holistic Moms Network a few days before Halloween. It should be a lot of fun!

As for the big day itself, we’ll take them Trick-or-Treating, but the sad part is that even if we wanted to let Keagan fill up on sugary treats, he just can’t. When you combine several allergies with probable hypoglycemia, Halloween is not as fun. So we’ll go, and he can get all the candy he wants in his bag, but then we’re “giving it to the faeries” whom Keagan believes live in our yard. Faeries, you see, live off chocolate and other sugary treats. In return, they will give Keagan a few small gifts and some dried fruit or home baked cookies or something of the like. I think this will work out. I hope so anyway. As the candy the faeries collect, I think we’ll give it to the homeless in our city. Everyone loves chocolate right?

We’re also taking them to a local pumpkin patch that sells organic heirloom pumpkins. Well it’s almost local, in the town my parents live in and we’re there all the time. I think the kids should have a blast. Okay, Keagan will. Eden likes being outside. Keagan is pumpkin obsessed! He loves them. So picking one should be a lot of fun, plus there’s a petting zoo, corn maze and other activities as well.

What fall/ harvest/ Halloween plans does everyone else have? I’d love to think of some activities to celebrate the change in season with the kids. We don’t have enough family traditions, so can we steal yours? 🙂

Read Full Post »

It’s been a very busy few days!

My little guy is not feeling well. Yesterday he had a runny nose, fever, diarrhea and was teething.In addition to this, our neighbors decided to be really loud and kept waking him up. It was a LONG night. This am, the fever went away. I was hoping it was all teething related. Then, tonight he started a barky cough. After a few hours of this, my husband and I realized it was croup. We’ve been through this once before. We had him sit in the bathroom while we let the shower and sink run hot water. It helped some, but the poor dear is so wound up he can’t stay asleep. I can’t wait for him to feel better.

Earlier in the day, when he was feeling fine and acting normal, he went to see his grandparents. When he did this, hubby and I went shopping. First to Goodwill. I love that place. We bought a ton of clothes for Eden, a wooden toy ferry boat for Keagan, a book for Keagan and some adult T-shirts to make pants out of for the kids. All for $16. Thrifting rocks. It was fun to pick out clothes for the little one inside of me. Mostly, I bought simple shirts on which I can add embellishments and embroidery. I am really enjoying embroidery these days.

After that, we went to the fabric store. We were just going to pick up some elastic for the t-shirt pants, but they were having an awesome sale. 50% off some of the sewing machines. We realized after playing with mine, that it is missing several pieces and that is why I can’t get the tension right. So we were contemplating buying a new one anyway. I’d planned on a simple machine. BUT the better machines were on such a good sale that they were close in price to the more basic models. So we got a computerized Singer that has 60 stitches, an embroidery alphabet and several other cool features. I already made half a pair of t-shirt pants on it and I love it. I can’t wait to play with it more! I think I would have whipped out all four pairs we have planned if it hadn’t been for Keagan not feeling well. If he stays asleep now, I will at least finish the one pair tonight. They are super easy, and coming from a girl who was afraid of sewing machines until tonight, that is  saying a lot!  I will post some photos when they are done.

Well little man is still asleep, hopefully for some time now. Poor baby boy.  I am going to go try out the pants.

If anyone reading this happens to know of some home remedies for croup, please let me know!

Read Full Post »

Well I can’t believe that 2008 is coming to a close. It’s shocking really.

A lot has happened this year. When the year started, we were so afraid of having another baby after Keagan’s traumatic birth that we thought we’d never have one.  We thought we’d probably have the husband get the “big v” and think about adoption.  Thankfully, a friend convinced me to at least TALK with a midwife about the possibility of getting pregnant.  And I did. I talked to a wonderful midwife and we’re so happy we did. We talked about all that went wrong last time, and how to prevent it this time. The OBGYN group I saw was not about prevention at all… they only acted after something went wrong.

So after talking with the midwife, we decided to start to try to conceive. We thought it would take months -I was still nursing and my cycles were anything but regular. On the midwife’s recommendation, I picked up “Taking Charge of Your Fertility” (and happened to find it at Goodwill for $2! I love thrift shopping!)  and we got pregnant on the first cycle! Even the midwife was shocked to see how quickly I was pregnant!

So thanks to all of that, our sweet Eden will be here sometime near April 4th. And we are very grateful for that. This pregnancy has not been full of any of the problems I faced with Keagan’s. I am visualizing a wonderful, peaceful water birth in a birth center and feel that I will be able to achieve that. And  I think that Keagan will benefit greatly from having a sister to share his childhood with.

Another big change this year came after reading Shane Claiborne’s book, “The Irresistable Revolution.” It really changed how we thought about a lot of things. It’s from a Christian perspective, but I suggest it to anyone and everyone. It’s about humanity;  it’s about love; it is about how human beings should treat one another. It made me think about things I’d never considered before. Now, because of this book, I am not afraid of the homeless. I am not afraid to try and help people in need. We’ve also simplified our lives quite a bit. I’ve gotten really into thrifting after reading about how badly child laborers are treated. I don’t want to support the companies that hurt those kids, plus it is great knowing that I am reusing materials that could have otherwise been thrown away. It brought on a lot of changes for our family, all for the good. When  a friend recommended it to be the first time, I was pregnant with Keagan and just didn’t have the attention span. I am glad I went back to it later.

My husband took a lower paying job this year, but it was a step in the right direction. He’s in a feild that he wants to be in, his job is secure, and he’s moving up quickly within his office. It was a scary choice to make, but it was the right one.

Keagan has changed so much this year. He was a baby when the year started. As the year closes, I have to admit that he’s much more of a little boy than a baby. He’s smart, funny and full of life. What more could a mama ask for?

We also moved this year. Our new home is much smaller, but much better suited for us. It’s kind of in the middle of nowhere, but that’s okay for now. We do toy around with the idea of living in Tacoma, where my husband works. I always thought I was a country girl, but more urban living really seems appealing to us right now. I think that is a change 2009 will bring for us.

All that said, I am ready for our new year and the many new challenges and changes it will surly bring. I am a little nervous about being a mama to TWO kiddos, but I think I am up to it. I kind of have to be, don’t I? 🙂

I have quite a few goals for 2009

1. Read the Bible. All of it. It’s not as if I’ve never picked it up before, I’ve read most of it, many parts over and over again. But I want to read it all and I want to make sure I am doing it every day.

2. Get Organised! My dirty little secret (or not so secret if you know me in real life) is that I am a TERRIBLE hosuekeeper. I will not let this be the case anymore. I won’t! If anyone has any motivation and organisation tips, please let me know!

3. Quit being scared of my sewing machine! I KNOW I can use the thing. I am capable. I need to realize it.

4. Complete 40 craft projects. I love to craft. But I never do it, or I start and don’t finish. I want to do about one a week, giving my self space to take time off with the new baby and to have some projects that are bigger and therefore take longer. I am going to quit drooling over other people’s creations and make my own!

5. Get out more! I’ve been in mama isolation too long. I love my son, but I need to get out. With a second one coming, this is going to be even more important. I am to the point where I get out so rarely that I become awkward in social settings sometimes. EEK. I need to get out. With the kids or without.

6. Get back into my charity work. I was doing great for awhile, but the move, the pregnancy, the holidays etc all got in my way. But that’s no excuse. People are still hungry out there!

7. Find more natural learning activities for Keagan. He is so smart and he just eats this stuff up. I need to nurture his little mind.  I am not talking about flash cards and drilling information into him here. I am talking more about Montessori inspired, child-led activities that will help nurture his learning and creativity.By the end of the year, we will probably be working on a bit more, still child led as he will be preschool aged and we’re going to homeschool him. I have a feeling, however that it will be leaning to the side of unschooling, at least for his early childhood.

8. Be a better cook. I really fall short in most things related to home making, so this is another goal I am going to be working on. I hate processed foods, yet I get lazy and use them anyway. I’d like to stop that!

That’s all I can think of at the moment. Maybe I should stop it there for now anyway. Don’t want to set myself up to fail 🙂

What are your goals this year? Have any tips for me to help accomplish mine?

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »