Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Zip It.

Absolutely love Etsy.

It has been a blessing to us financially to be able to make a buck here and there on fun things.  Not that it's payin da billz, but it at least pays for fabric.. and my sewing addiction.

I needed to make my sis-in-law a Boppy Cover to go over the boppy pillow I found new at Goodwill for $1.98.

I didn't have any zippers and they weren't on sale anywhere (I told you I was cheap!).  I checked on Etsy and found ZipIt.

I was able to order 10 Twenty-Two inch zippers for $8.
Ya heard it here.
8 bucks.

Not even a dollar each, when in the store they are around $2.50 each.  You can purchase any kind of zipper you want from this gal.  Short or long, pink or white.  Love it.

What was even better about finding these zippers was the frustration that I experienced waiting for them.
No, it didn't take long to ship.
I was a DUMMY and forgot to change my shipping address to our new house.  So, after 2 weeks, I checked Etsy and figured out- WHY YES, I had them shipped to our apartment.  They arrived super quick- there.  =)

I messaged Jennie, the store owner, to ask if the packaged had been returned to the sender.  She was so sweet, said they had not, but to let her know if she could help in any way.  She also checked in with me a week later to see if I had them yet.  Who does that?  Sweet people- people the world needs more of!

Thankfully, our old apartment is 5 minutes from my school.  I called the complex to see if they had them, and they didn't.  DANG IT.  I finally decided-I am going to knock on that door and see if they have my zippers!

After sweating through the pits of my shirt and drying my sweaty palms, I knocked- no one was home.  All this sweating and heart palpitating for nothin.

I wrote a note on the back of a receipt and left it at the door.  The girl who lives there texted me that night and said she had it still in the mailbox.

Woop!  So, finally, last night I was reunited (or united?) with my zippers.

They are awesome, were such a great deal, came with an adorable decorative pull tab just for fun, and I made a new friend in the Zipit lady- Jennie =)

SO, if you need zippers, order from Zipit.  You will not regret it!

P.S. Amy Grant Pandora apparently loves Twila Paris.  I have no idea who that is or how you say "Twila", but I looove her!

Sunday, November 27, 2011


I have really enjoyed reading about all of things people are thankful for over the past month.  I think it's really cool how we can challenge each other to post about things that are positive.  I wish I could say I am as thankful all year long as I am during the month of November, but, as much as I wish it were true, it simply isn't.
Correction- I wish I was aware of how thankful I should be all year long.
I wish I could be thankful this much when I am sad, mad, or tired.  I wish I could be thankful this much when life is hard and I feel like God is a million miles away (even though I know he's not).  I wish I told all the people I love how much they mean to me all year long.
I am always, always, always thankful.  I know the source of my thankfulness comes from Jesus and that all I have is from Him.  However, me being me-I forget January through October to be truly grateful.
SO, I am challenging myself to be grateful-this grateful-all the time.

Thanksgiving this year was just wonderful.  I don't know if it was because it was our first Thanksgiving in our house or what-but I felt like a real adult for the first time ever. Last week was a short work week and we only had school Monday and Tuesday (Score!).  Tuesday night we had our church dinner and it was nothing short of a huge huge blessing.  I am so thankful for our church family.  There are times when I imagine living somewhere else, but I always come back to our church family-we could never live without them.  They are home to me and the first/only church family I've ever known.  I was able to sit and talk with a woman from our church that I have never had the joy of really talking to.  It was so wonderful to learn from her and hear her heart.

A few weeks ago in Sunday school, we were reading from 1 Thessalonians 5 (which we studied in college but surprise, surprise, I forgot it all):
16 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.  Do not quench the Spirit.

Okay, I get the first sentence-I may be really bad at it, but I get it.  "Quench the spirit"?  What does that even mean?? After learning what it meant, it realized, WELP, I do that a lot.  The spirit leads me to do things and I flat out refuse to do them.  Horrible.

So anyway, as I was talking to this woman, I had this strong urge to pray for her...  right there at the table.  I had had the urge before, but I never did anything about it.  This verse came to mind (thank you Jesus for your Word!) and I started almost chanting in my head Don't quench!  Don't quench!  We got up to leave and, in the midst of my quenching (more like dousing), I asked this woman if I could pray over her.

Um, are these words coming out of my mouth?  I see people do this all the time.  Praying is not hard.  Why do I fear it?

Whatever,  Get over yourself and pray for this woman! is what I heard in my head.  I think my heart was about to burst from my chest!  We prayed and it was awesome.   I will remember it for the rest of my life.  Do you ever get that feeling?  That feeling of knowing you are doing exactly what God wants you to do at that moment- ahh,  There is no single greater joy than that.  I hardly ever experience it (I'm working on that part!), but when I do, it's huge.

I don't mean to share that to make you think I am holy-bah, far from it-just to testify to the work God promises to do in us.  He is working hard!

Wednesday Daniel got off work early and we were able to spend the afternoon out together.  I love that man.  We also went with our church fam to see fireworks at the lake to Christmas music.  We looked like homeless people eating chili, hotdogs and smores, warming up over grills in the dark.  So fun.

Thursday we spent allllll day with Daniel's family, which I always adore.  I am so thankful the Lord prepared me for and for me a family that I feel I've always been a part of, even before we met.  Sounds weird, but I promise it's true.

I did not go Black Friday shopping, but organized my craft/gift closet instead:

 You'd think we were expecting with all of that baby crap.  Boppy "models", clearance clothes, fabric everywhere!!

 I am a total bag lady- bags and bags and bags of fabric and notions.


Ahh, so much better.  Those drawers were full of sewing scraps and junk that I had neglected for two years.  They were filthy from 2 rounds of moving, so I decided to finally put them to use.  Still full of baby clothes, but that will change in January!

Saturday Daniel and I were total fatties and barely left the house (Daniel didn't.  I took a few boxes to Goodwill and got groceries).  We watched 2 entire seasons of Big Bang Theory and scarfed half a batch of no bake cookies.  Pathetic.  =)

Today church was great, as usual.  I learned that 1.  I love hearing bible stories being told like a children's book, as opposed to being read (both have their strengths!) and 2.  I need to read more.  My Father in law was paraphrasing Job and he moved on-I leaned over and said to Daniel, "Sooo, how does it end!?!?".  I felt stupid not knowing (and he looked at me like I was crazy), but thankful I have a husband who teaches me continually.

We went out to lunch with some good friends and will have our 6th and final Thanksgiving with my brother and his wife tonight.  Thankful to soon eat something besides turkey and mashed potatoes, but looking forward to the last 3 weeks of the semester and more family over Christmas.

I am so thankful.  Really, full.  Almost to the point where I am waiting for something bad to happen because life really can't be this good, can it?
I will trust that no matter what lies ahead for us, good, bad, blessing, or struggle, our God loves us enough to bring us through it, teaching us along the way.

Monday, November 21, 2011

What Every Girl Can't Live without this Winter...

Seriously, if you own sweaters, you need this.
Clothes like to do this thing called pilling when we wash and wear 5000 times.
Fuzz away (any brand, really!) shaves the pills away.
Life. saver.  Like new clothes.
Can even fuzz away in the car on the way to school!  Yipee! 

That's all, folks.  Just trying to survive through 2 days of work so that I can enjoy 5 days off in a row.
Thankful for life.

Thursday, November 17, 2011


A few weeks ago we had an in-service with the other middle school teachers in the district and we always share fun ideas to use in the classroom (I brought felt blooms =D).  Some of the teachers have been making lanyards with their kiddos and it has been a total hit.
Despite the fact that we give students 3 days off for Thanksgiving, they feel the need to skip town early and either come only Monday, or not at all.  I don't blame them-I would probably do the same if I could.  This=stress.  I can't just give them homework to do while they are gone so they don't fall behind (if only sewing machines were invisible- or we could sew with our minds.  Oh well, maybe in heaven.) because, well, we. sew.  It's such a hardship to have to reteach them 3 days worth of sewing patterns when they get back, because they are only falling behind even more.  We should be starting pattern envelopes on Monday, but I'm going to be smart and postpone until after Thanksgiving.  Instead?  Those awesome lanyards!
I found myself praying for my students last week when I had to leave school early unexpectedly.  I was in Walmart and, for some reason, I was overcome with gratitude and love for my girls.  They are so sweet, so kind, so fun.  They like to talk to me as much as I like to talk to them (which is a lot!) and share so much of their lives with me (they even asked me to wear my hair straight for "crazy hair day" this week and fawned over it when they saw it.  It was so sweet).  I am truly sad that my semester with them is coming to a close, but thankful that I have recruited most of them to take my Sewing II class next semester so that I get a whole year of them. 
While at Walmart, I found some faux sequin fabric ("fequin") for $1.47/yard.
Yep, ya heard right.  Best Cheap.
I bought them 10 yards of it just for "extra" projects.  They freaked out when they saw it.  So, we are making lanyards.  Sequin Lanyards.  Glamyards.
Here's How (Yes, these directions are pretty elementary.  I wrote them for 7th graders!):

·         Fabric- 3” by 44”
·         Interfacing- 3” by 44” (This is optional.  The fequin fabric I used was super thin, so I used it to stabilize.  You don't need it if you are using cotton unless you want it.
·         Key Ring (or office supply rings.  This is public school, folks!)

1.       Cut your fequin fabric and interfacing to be the same size, 3” by 44”.
2.       Apply interfacing to the fequin fabric with glue dots facing wrong side of fabric.
3.       Fold fabric in half lengthwise, so that is now 1.5” by 44”.  Iron.

4.       Open fabric out so that you now have a crease down the center of the strip.  Fold each edge of the fabric to the center crease.  Iron.
5.       Fold strip back together.

6.       Sew a ¼ inch seam allowance down both sides of the strip.

7.        Fold your strip in half so that is now 22” in length.
8.       Slip the key ring onto the lanyard to that it is in the middle of the strip (Okay, I used book rings I found in the supply closet.  Totally awesome and free!)
9.       Make sure your lanyard it not twisted and pin the two raw edges together.

10.   Sew across the raw edge with a ¼ inch seam allowance several times, backstitching each time.
11.   Trim seam away to 1/8 inch, making sure not to cut into stitches.
12.    Pull ring down to the seam just sewn and center the ring over the seam.

13.   Stitch as close to the ring as possible to secure it in place.  You will need to move your machine needle to the left, as if you were stitching on a zipper.

I'm not the hugest fan of carrying a lanyard.  However, I like the feeling of twirling my keys around while at school.  I feel like a warden on my cell block.  Ha.

Cost?  Well, 1 yard was $1.47.  You use 3 inches, which is 1/12 of a yard.  1/12 of $1.47 is TWELVE CENTS.  Thread and ring were free.  Woop Woop!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

$5 Friends

Daniel has classes for his business minor on Tuesday nights.  I really hate seeing him work 10-11 hour days and then have to go to class until 9:00 at night, but it will soon be over.  He is enjoying his classes, so it makes it more bearable when my heart hurts seeing him exhausted on Wednesday mornings.  The one good thing about him being gone is that I get a whole night to myself.  You're probably thinking, "You have NO CHILDREN!  Every day is a day to yourself!".  True.  However, I feel like by the time we both get home from work, we are exhausted and miss each other and just want to breathe each other in (while watching Big Bang Theory.  Seriously addicted).  You know what I mean?  I hate doing housework and Etsy orders when I could be spending time with Daniel.  These are things I get done on Tuesdays so that I am free to enjoy my husband and he has a clean home and fresh food to come home to. 
I also take my sweet time getting home after school Tuesdays because he's not there.  This means I usually stop at my favorite Goodwill store (Kansas City folk, it's the one on Metcalf and 135th.  Seriously, best thrift store of all time).
Yesterday, I scored these beauties:
Our current coffee pot totally stunk.  Not stink stink, it just spilled all over the place and I think the warmer plate was burnt out.  The coffee was cold after 5 minutes.  I love stainless steel in my white kitchen- this one is perfect.  It was a little dirty with coffee ground residue, but I cleaned it with some baking soda and vinegar, brewed vinegar water to clean it (my mom always did that- do you?  Just brew vinegar water once, then clean water 2 or 3 times after.  Clean!) and it looks brand new.  Seriously, not even joking.  Price?
$4.99!  This baby is $69.99 Retail!!  Ugh, so amazing.  Daniel loves coffee, but he doesn't drink any at home.  He told me last night (after he was thoroughly impressed!) that if he had a good coffee pot, he'd drink it at home.  Tada!  And, with the holidays coming up, we will have guests who want coffee.  =)

I also found this sweater from New York and Company:
1.  It is sold out in stores.
2.  Mine is grey.
3.  It was originally $46.50
4.  I paid $3.99
5.  I hand washed it when I got home and the water was grey... telling me it was barely worn and never even washed (especially now that I know it's in stores now).  =)

Don't you love a good thrift store find!?  I do!
Spent:  $9.00
Saved:  $107.49

Seriously?  Thank God for rich people who donate their gently used items.  =)

Monday, November 14, 2011

Pinterest Love

Is anyone else in love with Pinterest?  I'm addicted.

Okay, addicted is a strong word.

If I had more time, I would probably realllly be addicted.  So far, so good- I only get on 1 or 2 times a week.  Anyway, love it.  It is such an awesome place to find awesome ideas. 

I thought I would post something I found on someones Pinterest Board last week.

Do you ever drop your makeup and it cracks or breaks?  Ya, me too.  Hate it.  I am so cheap that I continue to use it, even if it means my Mary Kay makeup brushes from high school will manage to cling to a solid chunk and streak my cheek with some seriously heinous blush, forcing me to start the whole makeup process over again.

Welp, I found this gem on Pinterest, courtesy of Painted Ladies.
It really works.
I had dropped my bronzer on the floor and it cracked..everywhere. Most of it fell out and I had to sweep it up before the dog ate it.
I didn't take my own pictures, so here are the ones from the website =):

Pour into bowl.

Crush up.

Add rubbing alcohol to make a paste (capful)

Pour back into compact.

Let sit to dry for 8 hours.

Press tight with paper towel.

 Who knew?!  Maybe this will encourage my little sister to read my blog.  She is a makeup freak.  Most of my makeup is 3rd generation hand-me-down.  From my sister.. to my mom... to me.  Wow.  Pathetic!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Monogrammed Twine Letter

I was telling my girls at FCA this week (which has grown to about 31 kiddos.  Awesome!) about the Women of Faith conference and how much I loved seeing Amy Grant.

One of the girls I have in class said, "Oh, I know her".
Shut. Up.

I guess she met her on a cruise a few years ago and her family is good friends with Michael W Smith.  She ate dinner with her and snorkeled with her, too.  She said she gets backstage passes to her shows when she is close.  I can't believe I know this girl!  I loved her before this, but now I really like her (kidding.  But she is a great girl!).  And I'm not talking the Make-A-Wish type of "I know her".  She knows her.  Crazy!

Here is a video from the conference last week.  My mom, sis and I love Baby, Baby.

Anyway, I thought that was worth sharing.  =)
Here are some things I've been doing-

I made some new kitchen curtains to replace the ones our previous owners left (yes, it only took me 11 months to replace them!):
Seller Photo.

Don't you just love pleats?  This style would be darling on the crib skirt of a baby crib.  Love it!  Cost:  $6!

I jumped on the twine-wrapped-monogram-letter trend and made this:

Here is how you do it:

Make sure you hot glue the twine down as you go!

I love layering mantles.  It adds so much depth!  This craft cost only $1!  Letter- half off of $2 at Hob Lob, had the twine and glue.

We now have a serious problem in our house right now.
This is our first Christmas in our house and the first time setting up our tree (which is also "new".  Scored an 8-footer at a church rummage sale for $10!!).  What do you think?
Yes, I am watching an ultra-trashy Teen Mom at 7:30 am on a Saturday.

Leaning more towards the second one.  We are decorating next Friday-I will let you know what we decided! =)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Women of Faith

I head on the radio the other day that Billy Graham is 93 and wants to preach one more time before he dies.  I thought, "Man, I can't even imagine what heaven will be like when he walks in.  I am sure Jesus will be so excited to see him!".  I envied that type of excitement and then it hit me-Jesus will be just as excited to see me, and Daniel.. and all the peons who don't even compare to Billy Graham.  Aren't you thankful we serve a God like that?  So cool.  So undeserving.

A friend of mine from church, Kristie, won 2 tickets to the Women of Faith Conference in Kansas City this weekend and asked me to go with her.  It was such a blessing.  There is something about being in a room with thousands of other women, worshipping and celebrating the God who hears us and sees us and loves us.  It was a total chick fest.  There were times when I thought some women were going to take off and burn their bras, but it didn't happen =)  Lots of estrogen, though!
Unfortunately we had to miss quite a bit of it because we both work full time and couldn't take off work to attend all of the Friday afternoon sessions.  We were able to go in the evening and then Saturday afternoon.  We also had to miss the Saturday morning sessions because of our kiddos competing in Bible Quiz.  They only quiz one Saturday per month, and guess which Saturday the meet decided to land on.  Yep, this one (which, honestly, I didn't mind.  I hated to miss the conference, but seeing the kids compete to answer questions about God's word is just amazing.  They are so sweet and are learning so much!).

I didn't grow up listening to many Christian artists or hearing Christian speakers, so some of the presenters were totally new to me- except Lisa Whelchel, who is my doppleganger:

and Amy Grant! 

Can I tell you how much I loved hearing her in concert?  I know a lot of people don't like her, but I just love her... and, despite everything, Jesus will be just as happy to see her and he is to see me.. and Billy Graham =)  I did grow up listening to her, so it was awesome.  Each song brought up memories of my sister, Mom, and I spending time together.  I felt like I could close my eyes and feel like I was riding in my mom's navy blue Camry, drinking a Diet Coke, going to St. Claire Square to shop.  She came out and I had to fight tears missing my mom and sis so much!

Now that I think about it, we missed most of the speaking segments.  We heard Mandisa sing and I fell in love with her song Lifeline.  Seriously, check that baby out.  You will be blessed.

Anyway, I was hoping to get an autograph from Lisa Whelchel, but she had to leave early.  Boo.  But, in all, the whole conference was awesome.  If you are thinking about going this year or next, do!
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