My oldest son started chattering about making a teddy bear a few weeks ago. I'm not sure what inspired him, but he was insistent on making one!

How could I say no?

We used Simplicity 9524 for the pattern.

So, I found a few small pieces of fabric that I thought he might like and he set to work. He cut. I sewed. He stuffed. I sewed.

He's pretty darn cute - even without a nose and eyes - so we might leave him this way. What do you think? Should I add them or leave it as is?

Sound check... testing... 3, 2, 1...

Is anyone still listening?

Whew! What a time I've had!

Allow me to briefly fill you in on the last several weeks.

I... accepted job in Pennsylvania... gave two months notice at work... put house on the market... sold house in THREE weeks... took a quick vacation to Disney World...

...hopped a plane to PA... negotiated contract on purchase of house (more on that in another post!)... finished graduate school... spent every possible moment finishing work projects in hopes to leave everything in great shape for my replacement (who happens to be one of my BEST friends!)... packing... packing... packing...

And somehow fitting in Christmas shopping and wrapping in between all of that.

I wish that I could say this was a handmade Christmas, but it's not. You know how I love a handmade gift!

However... my friend, Kellie, and I collaborated to make something special for a mutual friend... who happens to be a hero to both of us.

Chris exudes light and positive energy. He's quick witted, hilarious, and insanely intelligent. He knows more about pop culture than anyone I know.

He's an amazing baker and always makes it a point to whip up something special for his friends to celebrate their special occasions.

So, we wanted to honor him this Christmas with something from our hearts - a superhero apron!

We teased him with Facebook & Instagram photos for several days while, but I'm pretty sure he had no idea what we were doing.

I couldn't find a man's apron pattern so we altered a simple pattern from Simplicity.

At Kellie's brilliant suggestion, I used mixing bowls as a template for the rings of the shield.


We were so proud to give it to Chris!

And, he seems like the kind of guy who appreciates something handmade from the heart.

I know that I say it often, but I praise God every day for the special heroes he has blessed me with in life.

Hope you are all doing great! I have truly missed you so much!

Boy, my life has been taken over by "grown up" decision-making these days.

First the major news... I'm moving! If you've followed my blog over the past year, you know that we completed construction of our current home last summer. The idea of a move may seem crazy.

Well, I've never been adverse to change and I've never been one to form attachments to material things – like my house. A great opportunity has come my way to move to Pennsylvania and my husband and I have decided to pursue this new adventure.

I'll still be working in marketing and communication in higher education - joining an amazing team at one of our nation's oldest universities. I'm super psyched!

But Pennsylvania?! I've never lived outside of the south and I don't know how to prepare for the snow! I've been sending out SOS signals to friends... asking for advice... please feel free to share, too!

Also... I'm in the final month of my graduate program! Yay! It's been an overpacked year and a half, but the end is finally here!!

All that I lack is a final paper–which I am having TREMENDOUS difficulty completing.

I'd rather be here. Hanging out with all of you amazing friends. Talking about life and crafting and bad hair color...

Alas... I realize that I cannot get this massive paper completed if I don't pack away a few distractions.

So, I'm going to hibernate for the next month, but I'll be back! And, I hope that you'll take the journey with me to Pennsylvania. A new house means a new onslaught of projects!!

I'll see you very soon!
Repeat after me.

"I will never make a yoga bag out of oilcloth."

Trust me. It's for your own sanity and the health of your sewing machine.

Having said that, look at how cute this turned out!

My friend, Kellie, and I have joined a yoga class that meets during the work day. Neither of us has ever participated before so everything was new to us! We didn't want to invest in our own mats until we knew we were going to commit.

Well... we committed, bought our own mats, and now we feel like proper yogis. That is... until we fall down during practice, start giggling uncontrollably, or go on strike during the moves that are waaayyyyy too advanced for our novice status.

I'm sure we're the instructor's worst nightmare...

We were due for a sewing date so we decided to make the Nigella Yoga Bag, a free pattern designed by Amy Butler.

We had a lot of fun digging through my fabric stash. I settled on oilcloth for the exterior of my bag, paired with a cherry print cotton for the lining.

Kellie found some a cute decorator-weight fabric and elected to use the same for the inside and out.

We didn't deviate from the pattern so I won't provide you with a step-by-step, but I will tell you what I would have done differently.
  1. No oilcloth! The pattern requires you to turn the bag right side out, inside out, and right side out again. In addition, there are steps that require you to sew through several layers of fabric. The oilcloth made these steps much more difficult. The round bottom nearly broke me - but I persevered!
  1. Pocket depth. I'm not sure what you can really put in these pockets. They are too tight for flips-flops and too deep for a cell phone a keys. If I was to make this bag again, I'd build in more give to the pockets and make them shorter.

Otherwise, this is a great bag and simple to construct... And a huge "Thank you!!" to Amy Butler Designs for providing this free pattern.

Now, Kellie and I can focus on becoming the serious yogis that we're meant to be.



I ordered new window treatments for my bedroom. Yes, I ordered them.

Part of me is disappointed that I gave in and actually bought them, rather than making them.

But... they look so good!!! And, they are lined!!! And, I didn't have to fight with yards and yards of fabric!!!

I can't believe I found something to coordinate with the explosion of pattern I already have going on in this room. I ordered them from JC Penney and I couldn't be more pleased.

Mark this task off of the list!

So, I finished up my classes this week and it feels ahhh-mazing!!! I have one huge paper ahead of me to complete in the next eight weeks, but that seems totally do-able when I look back at how far I've come.

I just can't wait to begin tackling all of the things on my creative to-do list!!!!!!!!!

Dylan has been asking me if we were going to decorate at all for Halloween. Honestly, I probably wouldn't have done anything beyond a jack-o-lantern, but he seemed so interested. I couldn't say no.

So, as a first step, I threw together a little bunting for the mantel and it's so cute.

Here are the fabrics that I used - all remnants from past projects.

And, some leftover pom-pom trim...

I cut a bunch of 1.5" x 12" strips from my fabrics.

I folded them like this...

And fed them through the loops between the pom-poms.

The fabrics were a bit frayed, but I thought it added to the character of the bunting. I trimmed off a few long strings and snipped the ends.

I added a few googlie eyes to make little ghosties out of a few pom-poms. So cute!!

The bunting now adorns my mantel, but it definitely needs something more...

And now that I have a little more time on my hands, who knows what I might come up with?

Have a great week ahead!!

I've never done much beading, or jewelry making for that matter.

And, it's sorta hard to know what you need for your projects if you don't know the name of the parts you're looking for!

After much research, I now know that jewelry making "parts" are called "findings."

{Um... why?}

Seriously, I must be Googling the wrong terms because I just can't seem to find the techniques that I'm looking for.

After pinning this beautiful necklace by Le Fanciulle, I went in search of the perfect beads to make my own.

I knew I was looking for seed beads, but what size??!!! There are a million options! Who measures in millimeters?! And how many would I need?

{I was nearly burned out on the project before it even began.}

But, then I had a special moment... I opened up one of my dresser drawers and found this belt made of the perfect beads!! They were right under my nose the whole time!

And, clearly, I don't use this belt (I didn't even remember that I owned it) so it was fair game! I grabbed my scissors and some extra thread and set to work.

I didn't have a lot of luck "weaving" my "hanks" {huh?} like La Fanciulle demonstrated, but I'm not displeased with the results.

I love the look of burnished metals so this is a necklace that I can wear with a lot of my existing jewelry. 

And, in case you're curious, I found the findings {he-heh...}at Joann's.

So, mark one more project off of my endless list!

I've pinned quite a few beading projects that I'd love to tackle, but I have no idea how to locate what I need - from techniques to closures. Can anyone recommend some great beading and jewelry making sites?

Thanks, friends! Have a great weekend!

I just wanted to share a few recent photos of our garden. We're still harvesting summer veggies, but we've planted for winter!

And, my jar lid wreath is weathering beautifully!

I'm a long time customer of Keurig. I absolutely love, love, love my machine! So, I jumped at the chance to host a House Party for Keurig's newest brewing system, Vue.

But, honestly... how could they really improve on perfection?

Well, they did.

The Vue system is astounding! You can select the strength of your coffee, create café beverages with fancy froth, and brew over ice! Like your coffee "extra hot?" Vue's got you covered!

As a House Party hostess, I received a Keurig Vue system, six boxes of coffee, delicious cookies, an apron, after-coffee mints, and all of the necessities for hosting an amazing coffee break for my friends.

But what's a party without a fun activity?

I've been dying to experiment with decorating mugs with Sharpies, as seen on A Beautiful Mess. So, I incorporated a little crafting session into my party.

We each picked our favorite coffee quote... well, except for Patrick, who chose to rebel... and set to work!

We had such a great time!

Get in on the House Party action! Head on over to their site and apply to host a party today!

Happy brewing!