Friday, September 13, 2019

More changeable, seasonal decorations

My last post was about wooden letters that spelled HOME with interchangeable images for the letter O.  While searching for them, I found a square shadowbox frame with a metal backing. It is divided to hold 5 images and a heading across the top. Many themes are available or you can use blank pieces to create your own. Here is a link to the products at Foundations Decor. There may be other sources but I haven't searched for them.

The first set I completed was Soccer, done with my grandson in mind. In the past few days I have finished Halloween and Giving Thanks. They are done so I can now return to other projects on my to-do list. With the exception of paint or Sharpie marker on some small areas, each part is covered with paper from my scrapbooking and card making stash.

The last set isn't shown in the frame only because I mistakenly deleted that photo and saved this one which doesn't have the magnets attached to the backs yet. Each image has at least two layers to it and looks very nice in person. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

The "Home" Project

I bought the word HOME, sold as unfinished wooden letters and painted them black to go on a shelf in my living room. I ordered alternate "O"s from two different sources to cover most holidays. The O substitutes are each done with paper scraps. Occasionally, a bit of shimmer pen was added, the ladybug's eyes are dimensional embellishments and the beachball has a thick coat of gloss to make it look shiny. 

I think I'm done, mainly because I'm running out of room to store the alternate O pieces! I've had fun and considering the news is never fun these days, projects like this are soothing. 

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Cards for teachers and a principal

These cards were made using dies from Spellbinders, both were from August's die of the month clubs (large die club being the clipboard, small die club is the backpack). As cute as the paper pieces are, they're a little fragile for a 4-year-old to handle so they aren't going to my granddaughter. Her teacher, my grandson's teacher and his principal will each get a card. 
The clip is three dimensional, the scissor blades move and the paper clip is made from paper. 
The green background paper is the green seen in the first photo. The grayish and bluish tones are photographic mistakes but I don't know what caused them.

The eyeglass frames have a double layer to the frames and have clear plastic lenses. Even the lenses in the image below took on a funny color. 

I bet it seems like I'll do anything to avoid housework. If I were you, I'd take that bet!

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

More lunchbox notes

When you like to color, love your grandson and granddaughter, and have a ton of stamps, you just might keep going with Lunchbox Notes!

The first batch of these is at the bottom of this post.

Monday, September 2, 2019

Home facelifts and lunchbox notes

Summer is passing way too quickly. I understand that most of us love one or two seasons, tolerate a third and wish the fourth was only a week long. For me, summer is my love and winter would be best shortened to three days bracketing Christmas.

The kitchen is done and I am enjoying it, keeping it clean by cooking as little as possible. 😉
As I said in my last post, the changes began because the boxy microwave from 1983 wasn't going to last forever and new ones weren't going to fill the old space. The new cabinet over this slimmed-down microwave had to be recessed to allow for the circulating fan at the top of the unit to work. I am pleased with how this looks.

New quartz counters were something my husband and I had talked about and was on a to-do list that didn't have a deadline. The previous counter, backsplash, and area behind the stove and refrigerator where all Formica. I wanted something simple....and then I fell in love with this accent tile.

While waiting for this to be installed, I found this lamp that will be used when I want a bit of mood lighting in the kitchen, such as when I invite people over for McDonald's or a $5 pizza. 😉 I liked the lamp so much, I bought a second one that is currently on the hutch.

The bathroom facelift consisted of new cabinets, elimination of a medicine cabinet with a simple wall mirror in its place,  new flooring and the toilet reinstalled after sitting in the living room over Easter.

I love the mirror. It came from At Home. The glass shelf below it was an Amazon order. The medicine cabinet had a shelf under it where I often used alphabet blocks to spell out holiday greetings. The white shelf is a picture ledge. I received a long black one last Christmas that is in my office and loved it so much, I knew I wanted this for the bathroom. I can change art without adding new holes in the wall or forcing an arrangement to fit the existing nail holes. 

As my grandkids prepare to start school (tomorrow for my granddaughter in preschool, Wednesday for my grandson in fourth grade) I've been making "lunchbox notes" for their daddy (my eldest son) to put in their backpacks. My grandson, the Prince of Sweetness as I called him in my previous blog, and my grandgirl, Princess Gogo, will get these on random days until/unless I hear that they don't enjoy them. Hers don't have words because of her age but they do have little hearts, mostly pink because that is her favorite color at the moment. I have more to make when I leave here. Crafting makes me happy and can't we all use a little more peace and happiness?

Sunday, May 5, 2019

May madness...

Today feels like spring and I certainly hope it sticks around.  Since early April, daily life has been very busy and often unpredictable. "Small" home improvements, meaning small for a home improvement company, began primarily because the timing was right. One of my sons hired a company we used 25 years ago for his kitchen remodel. I liked how things were being handled for him in the initial stages and decided to see if my jobs could be piggybacked. We live three miles apart, I was envisioning my jobs being tied into his schedule, and they have been to a degree. All is going well but like every home improvement since Wilma Flintstone asked Fred to put a window over her sink in the cave, the process is taking longer than expected.

My kitchen facelift consists of a new cabinet, new quartz countertops, new cabinet and drawer handles (77 of them!), and a new microwave. I could have done the handles. The new counters are something we began discussing a few years ago. Did I really need them? No, they were on my "someday" list. What spurred all of this in the kitchen was my microwave from 1983. That thing was still working but either had lost some strength or perhaps it just wasn't up to today's standards and therefore directions on a frozen food were never quite right.

The 1983 model was a large countertop microwave. When we had the kitchen remodeled in 1986, a specific contraption was purchased that held the microwave under a cabinet. It had a circulating fan (venting outside is not an option here) and had a light over the stove located below. When we began to discuss the microwave's eventual demise, we wondered what we would do to configure a new one. Nothing about a new one would fit in that previous holder and the unfinished wall would show behind it. Cabinetry could not be matched so I chose plain black to match the new microwave and tie into the routered design on the existing cabinets.

Here is the 1983 microwave followed by the unfinished look of this space with the new cabinet and appliance. Tile in this space should happen in the next few days. The black cabinet had to be recessed to allow the fan to vent. I am happy with the look, it seems like it was a design choice, not a solution that had to be made.

So there is the story: A still working microwave that isn't going to last forever led to a big bucks kitchen facelift! A few hiccups occurred but solutions were found and I am happy even though I still don't have a working sink on the main floor except for my laundry tub. 

I've had lots of exercise going upstairs to use the bathroom as the main floor has been without a toilet for a few weeks. It is a long, boring story not worth mentioning here, but this has been my living room view for a while now.
This is just the tip of the iceberg but a few stories aren't meant to be public yet.  I'm hanging in and hope you are too. 

Friday, April 12, 2019

Sweater styled like a Baseball Jacket

There is a sweet little boy on my street whose mom I've know since she was in high school with my sons.  That high school's athletic field is on the opposite side of our street. When a sporting event is taking place, most of the neighbors gather to watch the event, often with lawn chairs and coolers in tow. When I saw this knitting pattern, I thought it would be perfect for Zachary when he joins us in the fall to watch football and soccer.

The pattern is a free download from Ravelry. It was written by Debbie Bliss and is aptly named Baseball Jacket. This is the image most often associated with that pattern. 

I used Berroco Comfort DK, a sport weight yarn in my sweater. I chose this for its washability. I used our school colors and am pleased with the result. The pattern called for snaps as a closure which didn't seem like a good idea to me, at least not directly on the body of the sweater. If I had planned ahead, I would have made a button band with traditional buttonholes. 

The finished length of this sweater wasn't the right side for a separating zipper so I added grosgrain ribbon to the inside front openings for stability before sewing on regular snaps. The black buttons were then added to give a finished look to the front. 
I added the ribbon by hand, turning the cut ends under and stitching across each of those ends and down the open edge of the sweater. The other long edge of the ribbon is not sewn in place. You can see that on the left side of the photo below. My thought was that this might become visible on the outside if sewn. If it becomes a problem after washing, I will offer to tack it into place. 
I can't wait to see the happy little guy in this. Other than my opinion on the closure, this pattern was easy to follow and one I would make again.