Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last Post of the Year

Hi everyone!

Well, here we are at the end of another year, can you believe it? I've always found it strange how time both crawls and flies. But it can't be stopped and we're now on the brink of 2012.

On a personal front, 2011 brought us Zippy:

Who is now 7 months old:

And Toot turned three:

This Christmas was a fun one as Toot finally "got" the whole concept of Santa and how a strange man would break into our house to leave her presents. She was thrilled. It was also Zippy's first Christmas and I can only imagine the Christmases to come when they're both a little older and a little wilder.

On a creative level, there wasn't much scrapping that got done (d'oh!) but I did rejoin the team over at Gauche Alchemy and created more mixed media projects.



2011 also brought my obsession with crochet to a head and I found myself drawn to the hook more and more.



In 2012, I look forward to watching the girls grow more and more and hopefully watch my creative endeavors grow more and more as well. :) I want you all to know how much I've appreciated you visiting me here at Just Add Glitter and Stir this year and for being with me on this journey (Oh geez, I totally sound like The Bachelor.)

Anyhoo, thank you for spending time with me, here's to another year of blogging, creating and going nuts on a regular basis in 2012!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Oh the Sweater Outside is Frightful

Hi everyone!

Christmas is over, are you recovered yet? Now we get to look forward to a brand new year, see you in hell 2011! But before we ring in another year of possibilities, I wanted to show you what I made for my mom this year. I offered to crochet her something for Christmas and she picked out a sweater coat. Well, crap. I say that because I had never hooked up a sweater type thing before so this was a major project. But I did it! I can't decide if I'm happier with the way it came out or that I actually finished it in time to get it under the tree. Sometimes finishing something is more reward than anything else.

My mom will be PO'd that I posted a picture of her but she's gorgeous, I love her and she can kiss my grits. :P

I used the Broadway Coat pattern from the September/October 2011 issue of Crochet Today magazine. And although the sizing is a bit wonky I think, I'm so proud of it. My first major crochet project finished! And sort of wearable! In your face, no skill! :D


This pattern was actually pretty easy, thank goodness! It also gave me the confidence to try harder crochet projects in 2012. Maybe even something for myself I dare say?


I hope y'all had a very Merry Christmas and are looking forward to a bright shiny happy new year!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Have Yourself a Blurry Little Christmas

Hi everyone!

Christmastime brings so many things: good times with family, great food, a chance to make someone's day merry and bright and crappy pictures with Santa Claus.

When Toot was born, I looked forward to the day when I could take her to see Santa. It was easy the first year as she was only 1 month old. (We like to go in late November to miss the crazy crowd.) And being just a month old, Toot obediently sat there while the photographer snapped away:
2008

The next year, Toot was just over a year old and things didn't go so smoothly. Her and I were out and on a whim we stopped to see Santa. Toot promptly freaked out. Which really, you can't blame her. I had spent months screaming, "STRANGER DANGER!" only to plunk her down on a strange man's lap and demand she ask for presents. Parenting is awesome. The best part (or worst part as I like to call it) was they made me be in the picture and I'm so thankful that my child has this horrible picture of me to remember this lovely day of horror, tears and emotional scarring:

2009

The year after that, Toot was dressed to the nines,we talked about meeting Santa for a week and I even took my husband, mom and dad along in an effort to create as much excitement as possible. Toot wouldn't go near him. So the next week her and I were again, out and about which is why you see her dressed in a hot pink Hello Kitty tutu instead of the holiday-themed outfit she originally wore for the picture that never happened.

She also bogarted the Elmo doll the photographer was using to try and get her to smile and from the looks of it, strangled him. She still refused to sit on Santa's lap so he had to sneak around the back. At least I didn't have to be in it this time:

2010

Cut to this year. Now we not only have Toot but Zippy's in the picture and at 6 months old, I was worried we'd have Christmas War on our hands with the both of them. I dressed them up, took them in and prayed to all that was holy to please please please, give me ONE good Santa picture.

And guess what? They were AWESOME! Both the girls were enchanted, Toot was smiling, Zippy stared adoringly at Santa and we got the perfect shot. Sort of:

2011 Take One

Behold! The perfect Santa picture, in all it's blurry glory! WTH?! The guy tried to convince me that it would "print out not blurry" which of course it did NOT. They offered to take it again at which point Toot screamed, "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" We finally convinced her but she wouldn't smile and Zippy was getting restless. Santa, being the smart man that he is, suggested he "read" with them and take the picture that way. Which was a great idea except the photographer apparently was confused by the words, "auto focus" and the picture was still blurry. Not as blurry but blurry:

2011 Take Two
So there you have it. Christmas does not want my children to see Santa. I guess there could be some deeper lesson here for me like the reason for the season, being thankful and all that but I think I'll stick with Christmas hates me.

God bless us everyone!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hookers at the Beach

Hi everyone!

I just finished up a year long swap on Ravelry, the last box containing an afghan for my partner, along with other good what nots. My partner loves the beach so I created a whole box filled with "beachy" items and used the Ocean Waves Throw pattern from Crochet Today magazine for her afghan.


I also decided to make her some beach themed flip flops:




Everyone could use a little beach time in the cold months, right? :D

Monday, December 12, 2011

How to Make Glitter Crayons

Hi everyone!

Taking old crayons and making them into...well, crayons isn't a new thing but we did it for the first time today and found it to be super easy and really quick. Two things I always look for when doing something crafty with Toot. Toot has an unbelievable amount of broken crayons and it was either this, save them for my projects (of which I already have quite the collection) or trash them.

You don't need much for these guys:

Thank you, various restaurants!
  1. Broken crayons (We had a bunch from going out to eat that the restaurants gave to Toot)
  2. A mini muffin pan (You could also use metal cookie cutters for fun shapes)
  3. Cooking Spray
  4. Glitter (If you want it...and you know you want it)

I was able to include Toot in the project by giving her the job of getting all the paper off the crayons. Unfortunately, she was too busy for a proper photo:
"Smile for the camera, Toot!" "No Momma, I'm busy."

Spray your pan, break or cut your crayon pieces into smaller pieces and add them to the muffin cups. I also added a little glitter because well, I like glitter. (You probably weren't aware of this.)

Pre-melt

I put them in a 250F degree oven and left them for just under 10 minutes. Your oven might use less or more time so keep an eye on them.

Mmmmm, melty.

They cooled off pretty quick, somewhere around 30 minutes. Toot was super excited and took off to color. (Oh yeah, you have the added bonus of some quiet time while they're coloring away. Score!)

All done!

I was thinking, this would a super fast and cheap project to do for last minute stocking stuffers or when you're stuck for a gift idea. Stick them in a small baggie and attach some ribbon. Done!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Perfect

Hi everyone!

The Gauche Alchemy guest designer for December is Cat Kerr who is a.w.e.s.o.m.e. I'm always inspired by Cat's work and love her use of vintage images and beeswax. So with her in mind, I created this mini canvas:

More pics after the jump...

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

FedEx is Afraid of Trees

Some of you may remember my post, FedEx Thinks I'm Fat in which I told a tale of horror as FedEx refused to deliver my package under the "No address on any house on street" clause even though my camera told a different story:


That was back in July and since then we've had one package delivered by FedEx with no problem. Cut to today. I got a new phone from AT&T and they only ship one way: FedEx. dun dun DUN! So today is when the new phone arrives...theoretically. We checked online for a status only to see our package as "undeliverable" due to "incorrect address". My husband promptly calls FedEx to be told by the customer service rep that the driver was unable to find our house due to "too many trees".

Too. Many. Trees.

I might buy this excuse except that none of the trees on our street block the house numbers. No wait, I'm not buying this excuse. "Too many trees"?!?! *face palm* I mean, come on. It's not like we have those mean apple trees from The Wizard of Oz or something.


(On a sidenote: Is it me or is that an unfortunate screenshot for the title on that clip? And yes, inside I am a 12 year old boy.)

So I get out my trusty camera and get into my car to confront these evil trees that keep the good people of FedEx from giving me my crap. Stupid upstart trees, how dare they?!


Hmmmm...maybe FedEx thinks we live in treehouses...

UPDATE: We did get the package.  They sent back the driver who came to door, left the package and made a run for it.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Craft Fail: Acorn Bag, A Corny Bag

You know, crafting doesn't always end with beautiful and amazing projects, shown in all their glory with gorgeous lightbox photos and Photoshopped edits. Sometimes crafting is about the FAIL. The crap that happens when you try your best and still suck. No need to be ashamed or hide your fails. Sometimes the most encouraging thing you can do for your craft is suck at it.

Wait, that makes no sense whatsoever. Don't listen to me, it always bites when projects come out looking like something ate it and promptly threw it back up again. Such was the case when I fell in love with the Acorn Bag Pattern from Roman Sock.
The original Acorn Bag from Roman Sock
Isn't it darling??? At the time, I was doing a Fall themed swap and thought this bag would be PERFECT for my partner. So I furiously began hooking and from the get go I knew it wouldn't work...my yarn was too soft and my bottom fell flat. (Oh, how craft mirrors life at times...) But I was resolved not to give up and started on the top. Which looked really really horrible. It was about that time I found that someone on Ravelry had created an alternate top that looked AWESOME:
Acorn bag with fancy new top by ShaanaBanaana
Isn't it the coolest??? I just love how the post stitches create this gorgeous array of acorn-y patterns. So that's what I decided I would do, wouldn't my partner be dazzled by my amazing hooker skill? Hmmm...not so much.
My acorn (?) bag (?) ....I am ashamed...
G-R-O-S-S. First of all, the bottom part totally collapsed and there was no saving it. Second, I never could get the post stitches in the right order to recreate the beautiful pattern made by ShaanaBanaana. Third, I sewed the stem onto the inside of the lid originally and had to rip it out (or "frog" it) and redo it. Fourth, I so did NOT send this to my partner.

EPIC.CRAFT.FAIL.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Crochet in the Wild

Hi everyone!

You know, behind every good couch is a crocheted afghan. At least that's the story TV is selling us these days. Best story ever. I'm always on the look out for crocheted what nots in the background of my favorite movies and TV shows. In fact, I'm often pausing what we're watching (usually multiples times) to get pictures of my findings. My family loves it...at least I assume so.

Anyhoo, here's a crocheted beauty on "Psych" behind the lovely Molly Ringwald:


The granny square delight on the couch of Amy Farrah Fowler on "The Big Bang Theory":




And this fantastic afghan behind a hungover Ann Perkins on "Parks and Recreation":


Cool, right? By the way, how does one apply to be a set hooker anyway? I would really love that job.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Our Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

Hi everyone!

I just love Thanksgiving. The parades, the food, the good times with family, the food, the naps...and more food. Unfortunately, Thanksgiving gets lost in the shuffle of Christmas that seems to get started in September these days. The husband and I have been trying to think of fun Thanksgiving type traditions to create for Toot and Zippy and since they're both a little too small for most Thanks-y type crafts, we decided to start an annual tradition inspired by our favorite Thanksgiving TV show:


A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving has been shown on television since the 1960s and probably one of the most memorable things about it is the impromptu meal Snoopy makes with Charlie Brown and Linus after Peppermint Patty butts in and invites herself over for Thanksgiving dinner. (BTW, where are these children's parents? And how does Peppermint Patty (not to mention Marcie and Franklin) not already have plans with her family? I mean, did her parents just say, "Sure kid, do whatever the hell you want for Thanksgiving")

Anyhoo, camera back on me. We decided to watch this vintage special while indulging ourselves in the traditional Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Feast:

Winner of the Most Carbs in a Single Dinner award

Toot was suspicious. After all, we almost never eat white bread and a meal of straight up sugar and carbs isn't usually what I like to serve my family (although it is awesome).

Wait, you're saying I can eat this dinner? Is this a trick?

But she caught on pretty quick.

Oh snap! Candy and carbs for dinner!

It was a lot of fun watching this cartoon with my kids after seeing it so many times when I was a kid myself. We're looking forward to making this part of our Thanksgiving celebration every year.

So to all my friends in the US, go stuff yourselves with too much food then go pass out on the couch.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

My Wonderland Mobile

Hi everyone!

I was honored to be the guest designer for November at the LESSology blog. Their theme for this month was to make a mobile while upcycling materials so I created this Alice in Wonderland mobile using an old embroidery hoop, fabric remnants and various odds and ends:



Please check out the LESSology blog for more pictures and my step by step.

Have a great day!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Wrap It Up

Hi everyone!

You know, some crafty types make the decision back in January to make all of their Christmas gifts. They furiously crochet, glue, knit or otherwise attach stuff to other stuff in an effort to either 1. Save money, 2. Give their loved ones special and thoughtful handmade awesomeness instead of store bought crap or 3. Show off (I made a toilet paper cover that looks like a Southern Belle, in your face!)

I'm all three except that instead of starting in January, I'm just now thinking about it. Oops! Therefore I'm in the middle of three or four projects for people in my life that will hopefully be finished by this Christmas. Or maybe next Christmas. Or Christmas 2020. Haven't figured that one out yet.

Anyhoo, here's a wrap I'm currently working on:

One half of a Christmas gift...or a good intention? You decide!
I've never crocheted a wrap before so I'm interested to see it finished. Or maybe I should say interested in actually getting it finished.  I guess if I don't finish it I'll just send them these pictures with a card that says, "It's the thought that counts, you selfish jackwagon!"

Wrap Close Up

So think of me as I begin my quest to gift loved ones with beautiful treasures instead of pictures of half finished crap attached to rude Christmas cards.

Ho ho ho!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Birds of a Feather Get Glued Together

Hi everyone!

Recently I created a mixed media canvas inspired by Gauche Alchemy's guest designer for November, Frieda Oxenham. Frieda loves nature and I've been hanging onto a vintage book page with birds on it for ages. It felt good to finally get a chance to use it.


More pics after the jump

Monday, October 31, 2011

Strawberry Tootcake and the Zombie Bears

Hi everyone!

Halloween isn't a huge deal around our house BUT Toot loves to dress up so she ended up with about three different costumes this year. (What? I can't help it if she looks cute in everything! :P) But by far her favorite was her Strawberry Shortcake costume. She is obsessed with Miss Shortcake and her friends which thrills me to no end since I was obsessed with them myself when I was young.

We got her all dressed up yesterday and took her to the mall for some trick or treating around the stores. There was about 3 other Shortcakes there but Toot of course was the strawberry-est, the short-est and the cake-est.


We waited in a huge line for an hour before discovering that the line was for little goodie bags and entering the mall's giveaway. Booooo! So we grabbed our goodie bag, entered the giveaway (You owe me, Mall!) and then started off to invade the stores and demand our candy...uh, I mean politely say "Trick or Treat!" and act like Toot would be the only one eating candy when we got home.


Afterwards we had lunch and I discovered Toot playing with her food. It looked like some sort of zombie bear march...

Four zombie bears?  That's not so bad...

They're multiplying! RUN!!!!!!!!

Happy Halloween everyone! Or if it's not your thing, Happy Monday! :D