Thursday, September 30, 2010

Remembering Rebekah

Well, I am not sure if I had mentioned it on this blog before, but I have a younger sister named Rebekah who lost her battle with cancer about a year and a half ago. Her husband is finally parting with some of her things, so I went to his house to pick out what I wanted before the yard sale starts tomorrow. I came home with 2 large totes full of yarn and fabric. As I went through all of those things, I realized again how much alike she and I are.

She had loads of fabric that had been picked up at yardsales (still had the masking tape and price on it), and several things it looked like she was planning to an old bedsheet and some curtains. She loved making handmade gifts for everyone, and she was great at it! I wish I could have shared with her when I found out how to make t-shirt yarn, and plarn...I know she would have loved reusing old things and making them new again. (Another thing I found was about 10 crochet needles in only 2-3 me, she would misplace one and go buy another).

The other great thing about getting those boxes of her stuff, was finding her half-finished projects (she was working on several things). I feel like there is still a part of her wrapped up in that yarn (the part-finished things) because it is something she put work and love into. I am still deciding what to do with those projects though. I certainly will never unravel them, but should I try to finish them out?...(I don't even know specifically what she was making). Or should I just tie them off as they are and give them to her closest friends and family?

I have thoroughly enjoyed my evening of reminising and the glimpse of my Bekah that I miss so much. She was my best friend in the world, and I will never feel that I did enough to show her that when she was alive.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Will I ever make it?

I've been kinda bumming around this morning, checking out some blogs. I keep seeing blogs with all of these followers and wonder...will I ever get 50 followers? (I'm at 2 now! lol). I don't want just random followers of course, I want people who are interested in what I have to say...I think I have something important to say... I want people who will give me honest feedback about my projects, recycling, selling my items if I choose to etc.

Sometimes though, I feel like no one would read my blog because I can't seem to make my posts seem interesting or flow in a logical manner. For some reason, when I go to write a blog seems choppy, but I can write an English paper worthy of an A with relative ease. Maybe I am not planning and editing enough... Even now I feel this post sounds whiney and disorganized. BLAH!

Well, in the hopes that just practice of writing something will help me to become more articulate and better organized with my ramblings...I am still posting this (and if you don't like it..don't read wait! Come back! lol)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Scavenger Hunt Sunday? (....Monday)

Oops! I completely spaced yesterday and forgot to do my photos and link them here they are, a day late.

1. Miniature
2. Water Droplet
3. Bedhead
4. Colorful
5. Eyes

Miniature: Me and my Mini-Me---Technically this was taken by my hubby (another below that I took in case this doesn't count).

Me and mini me again.
Water droplet: on inside of a water bottle.

Bedhead: daughter pretending to sleep.


Eyes: My daughter again!

Next week's items.


BBQ on the River

Saturday night, Dave and I went with some friends to the BBQ on the River in Paducah, KY. There was tons of food and a few other vendors...and some wine tastings! We had a pretty good time, and I brought home a bottle of wine from the Purple Toad Winery...a very tasty strawberry wine. Other than that, we basically just walked around and ate food...I got to try some super awesome ribbon fries which are basically potato chips, but they were still awesome!

Aly and I had gone to the festivities a little earlier in the day, so I am posting some pictures below of she and I wandering around doing some fun stuff.

Doing some quilting!

Extra concentration needed...hence the tongue.

Dippin Dots as finger food! (Sticky hands!)

Dots are the Best!

Not sure why, but Aly has decided she really likes these hand dryers...she was doing a little dance in McDs bathroom (and I just happened to have my camera still in my purse!)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Hooray for sock creatures!

So...I made some sock creatures tonight (used real socks this time). Strangely enough, the "easy" patterns were the hardest for me to do. The bunny was my favorite...I will definitely be making more of him.

My adorable little bunny!

Side view so you can see his/her ears.

Squarish turtle.

Strange (but cute) fish.

Well, that's it for my creativity tonight. I'm completely out of ideas...for now. I think I will go put some of my rag rug material in a bag for tomorrow. I'm supposed to make an appearance at a 1st birthday party for a friend's baby, so a rag rug will give me something to do (especially since my hubby volunteered to show up early to help grill).

Back on track!

Yesterday I got back on track a bit with my projects. I spent probably 6 hours or so creating 2 new handbags. I love how the bottom one turned out (the first one I made). The other one, I am still undecided on. It is cute, but I am not sure it is something I would carry myself. For these projects I recycled/repurposed a bed sheet, lacy dress, placemat and pair of curdoroys. I may still do some finishing touches to these; I think the lacy bag needs a ribbon or other detail a the top, and the placemat bag has a seam showing on one of the handles (but down on the bag I think I may put a flower or something there.)

 Lacy skirt bag...made from lacy dress and bed sheet.

Placemat bag...made from a placemat and pair of curdoroy pants.

I talked to someone yesterday about possibly consigning some purses and things at their shop. I think she has a nice, fair way of doing consignment. I tell her how much I need to get out of my items, and she marks it up 50% from there and tries to sell it. When it sells, I get my price and she gets the 50%...everywhere else I went, they price the items and I get 40 or 50% after it sells. Most of those places also send it to goodwill if it hasn't sold within 3 months. I don't want my bags that I make sent to goodwill, so those places are not a good fit for me. With the other place, I will have to ask for a little less than what I actually want out of my bags in order for them to sell once she marks them up, but I think it is a good deal anyway. I am not really putting my things in consignment to make money anyway, for me it is more for market see if there are people out there who like and will buy my things. I asked some of my friends and family on facebook to rate some of my bags and things by telling me what they would expect to pay for such an item, but haven't had any responses yet.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Not so good this week is Wednesday, and I haven't posted anything since Sunday....and also haven't worked on any new projects since then. (I have done a little bit on my new rag rug, but not much). I am going to cop-out and blame being sick, but I do need to start working at getting better or I will never have everyone's Christmas gifts finished in time...not to mention nothing to sell if I decide I want to do that. I have been thinking alot about what I would like the name of my business to be. Or what I want to have as a "brand name" for all of my creations. (I may have to make a facebook post and have my friends and family weigh in.) So, I am making a goal for this weekend to get my craft stuff semi-organized and projects ready to start. (I can't wait till we have the money for our own place so I can really organize my stuff and have a room, or corner of a room, dedicated to my projects.)


Sunday, September 19, 2010

Project Pictures

I finally got some pictures to upload, so I am going to try to post pictures I promised last week of some of my projects. These projects are all made from recycled materials.

Rag Rug that I finished a few days ago. It measures about 21 inches.

New rug I am working on.

Aly's Dora handbag...made from shorts (and a shirt).

Inside pockets...mismatched socks.

Cute handbag-Recycled placemat, mens shirt, button, scrap quilt material.

Liner is a recycled pillowcase, pockets made from the mens shirt.
Cloth napkins. Purchased fabric remnant with chickens, reverse side from mens shirt.
Purse crocheted with T-yarn.

Crocheted plarn purse.

I'm so happy to finally be able to upload these pics! Now I just need to get started on some new projects...right after I finish my homework lol.  (this link is for a scholarship I am applying for--feel free to check them out!)

Scavenger Hunt Sunday

I decided to try out the scavenger hunt this week...hoping I could get my pictures to load because it hasn't been working for me all week. Ok, well, I got my pictures to load, but they are in backwards order, and I can't seem to figure out how to move them around. So in backwards order, here they are. (Square, Pair, Currency, Clean, Wish/Dream).

I was looking for a quilt square this morning, but don't know what I did with them, so this is a handle I stitched onto one of my bags. Its a square with X inside.
What a cute pair of feet-my daughter's while she was sleeping.

Currency-some blurry pennies, but I liked this shot.

Some clean plates in the dishwasher.

My dream is to be able to make and sell my projects for a living or atleast some extra cash. Almost everything I make is from recycled materials. This bag is an old green towel, the stripe (and liner) is a bedsheet, the flower embellishment is old t-shirts, and the hem at top is jean...there is a jean layer in the handle and on the inside between the towel and make it sturdy enough to carry my books.

This project was fun, and made me think about my shots...I think I will do this every Sunday if I can. (Maybe I can learn how to work my camera better while I am at it lol.)

Next week's items:
1. Miniature
2. Water Droplet
3. Bedhead
4. Colorful
5. Eyes

Friday, September 17, 2010

Sock Creature

Tonight I sewed my first sock creature! But I used a polo-type t-shirt instead of a sock so I'm not sure it really counts lol. I did use the same pattern as for a sock, but didn't want to completely mess up one of my long socks if it turned out terrible. I think it looks pretty good though, if I do say so myself. It is a snake (for anyone who can't tell). I finally found my charger for my camera battery, so here's some pics too! (And, for anyone who has been waiting for them, I am adding the promised pics to my old posts too...since I have been promising for awhile).

Sock snake

Hmm. I can't get blogger to let me add another pic now, so I will save the rug I am working on now for another post.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Off to a Great Start!

So, I am very pleased with the progress I have made in the last couple of days. I have done very well with my idea of creating something every day. A few things in fact, and now I may need to spend some more time studying lol. Yesterday, after taking Aly to preschool, I came home and made a Christmas present for my Dad...a set of cloth napkins with chickens on them (to match his kitchen decor). Then I made an adorable purse out of an old placemat (will post pictures as soon as I find my camera charger), and I redid a shirt that was way too big for me. (I took it in on the sides, and removed the sleeves...) Later in the evening, I made a stuffed lady bug for Aly to play with.

Today, I made a purse for Aly from an old outfit of hers that was too little. (It was also stained, so not fit for goodwill). I cut out a couple of embroidered patches from a Dora shirt that Aly had, and sewed them onto a matching pair of shorts (covering the stains), then I took the rest of the shirt material and made a liner for the bag from it. I also turned some too-small mis-matched Dora socks into adorable little pockets on the inside of the bag. This particular pair of shorts also had an attached belt, which became the handle. It turned out super-cute and Aly loves it!

I sure hope I can keep up the pace and make atleast one thing every day (and that Aly doesn't keep thinking she needs one of every single thing I make). I really love creating things, and it is a great stress-reliever for me also. Now I have to get back to my studying and writing my research paper.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Boy am I tired!

I stayed up way too late last night (studying mostly) and had a really long day at school today. Wednesdays are the worst for me because I am gone from home for 14 hours (my school is an hour drive each way). The long day is just the price I pay for only having to go to school 2 days per week, but believe can take its toll. I had 2 tests today. The first was in my Anatomy and Physiology lab...I think I did pretty well, but I did spend alot of time studying, so I will be very disappointed if I didn't. The other test was in my computer class. It was graded automatically when submitted (by computer) so I know I did well on it. It would be nice to not have to wait to find out how I did. I have an english paper from two weeks ago I still haven't gotten back...and another due in a week so I really wanna see my other one so I don't make the same mistakes again.

So, atleast until my schedule changes, Wednesdays aren't going to be productive for me to create something...unless I take something with me to school that I can sew by hand. I wonder if I could sew or crochet or something in class. I would be scared to ask though, and in a way I see it as rude...even though I can pay as good or better attention to the lecture when I have something to occupy my hands. I do have several breaks between classes though, so if I could take something to work on, that might work nicely. In the next few days I think, I will be getting materials set aside for my next few projects, and really trying to work on something each day.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I won't feel bad anymore!

So, I have decided today that I will no longer feel bad for cutting up clothes that some might deem (somewhat) reusable. I took a trip to the local goodwill store and found a few choice pieces of material (quite large) for $1.50 per piece (average piece was 3-4 yards). When I went to checkout though, I asked if they had any smaller pieces for a lower price, and the cashier told me that they THROW THEM OUT!!! They are only supposed to put the large pieces out for sale, and throw away the smaller pieces. I asked if maybe they could give them to me or put them in a free bin instead, and she said that was not allowed. (She did promise to talk to a district manager about it though).

I was flabergasted that they throw away perfectly usable material pieces! I mean, correct me if I am wrong, but people donate those things thinking someone else will get to use them....and so that they don't end up in our LANDFILLS! It absolutely enrages me to think about because I know lots of quilters or scrap crafters like me who would love to have those pieces. I am holding out a small shred of hope that next time I go in there, I will see a bin of free fabric pieces. This experience has made me realize though, even if I donated my old clothes to goodwill instead of reusing them, probably half of my stuff would end up in the landfill anyway. (Either for being outdated or having a stain or something).

Well, there is my rant for the day. On a more positive note, I think I am going to try to start creating something everyday (or atleast days I am not totally overcome with school work). I hope to eventually be able to sell some of my recycled creations, so making something each day will help get me on that road to having enough to actually start selling. Hopefully I will be blogging more about my experiences also and sharing pictures!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Back in Kentucky

We got moved back to KY with no real problems. We are currently living in my Dad's house until we can find jobs and afford a place of our own. Our summer was pretty low key since we really didn't have any money to spend. Alex and Devin (my stepsons) were here over the summer. Devin went back to NY about a month ago, and we just took Alex back yesterday. I believe Alex will be coming back to live with us permenently next year after he turns twelve. He seems pretty miserable at his mom's...I just wish she could see it and let us have him without a fight.

I started school a few weeks ago, getting my prerequisites for Nursing done with. So far, my Anatomy and Physiology class seems like it will be the hardest. I have a lab test coming up next week which I feel like I really need to study for, but it seems that's all I have been doing lately. (Going to class and doing homework and studying). So far though, the quizzes and tests I have taken I have done very well on, so I am just wondering if I have to continue to have no life in order to pass my classes. lol. I just want a good balance again. Aly is also in school (early head-start), so I try to study when she is in school, but still never seem to have enough time to spend with her in the evenings. I'll have to try to start budgeting my time better.