Sunday, February 28, 2010

Pillowcase

Finally! I finished Zach's pillowcase. It was a little harder than I expected just because Zach was so possessive of his pillow, AND the fabric which he thought was a blanket. I couldn't ever get it away from him so that I could actually work on the darn thing. Every time I tried to grab his pillow to measure it (it's kinda a funky size) he would snatch it away and either lay down on the floor with it or take it all the way back up stairs to his bed where it belonged. Then I would pull out the fabric and he would snatch that away and wrap himself up in it as his blanket. I finally distracted him with the finished quilt instead and made a really rough pillowcase and fit it to his pillow later when he was busy playing with his dad. I made it extra long so the pillow wouldn't slide out too easily.
It's definitely looking like a big boy bed now!
This is a quilt I started for him in Idaho over the summer and finally finished just in time for his birthday in January. Hey! At least it didn't take 7 years like Jason's quilt.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

More nesting projects

Here's a whole bunch of little scrap projects I've got finished now. Two weeks remaining... There's still a lot to do!

I know, it may be cheesy that these all match but come on! I'm using scraps here guys. Plus, sometimes it's kinda fun to be all coordinated and matchy matchy. Just for kicks, ya know?

Cutsie Burp Rag
Matching Big Brother, Little Brother Tie shirts. I love them!
Car seat strap covers, and guess what... I made these up all by myself. No Pattern! I'm sure there's easier ways to do it but I was working with scraps so I had to make do with what I had.

So the car seat is officially fully outfitted for the big day. What next?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Zach demonstrating "Up Down"

Up Down... or is it Down UP?

More Zach on Youtube

This was a video from a few weeks ago when Zach first discovered "Boos Boo!"

Zach counting blocks

This is my first attempt at using youtube to post a video. I hope it works OK. It was too big to post using blogger as I usually do. I love this video though as you can hear Zach's version of counting as he goes and WOW! He get's that tower pretty darn tall!
I think the part that surprised me was that when I prompted him with "seven" he immediately followed up with "eight" without any help. As you can tell, 9 is still his favorite number. ; )

I recommend pausing it for a little while at the beginning so that it has time to load up, otherwise it kinda gets stuck.

Glasses

Zach was playing with his pipe cleaners today and he started wrapping them around and peeking through them like they were glasses so I made him a pair. He loved them and I ended up not being able to get them off of him until he fell asleep for his nap.


This first picture he is actually peeking through a magnifying glass that HE made himself. He actually came up with it a few days ago and started wandering around the house looking at things through it. I thought it was pretty clever. (I blame Dora the Explorer for that one)
He was being a total ham and actually posing for the camera.
Then he put the glasses on me and started pointing to the camera for US to take a picture. I just LOVE this one.
p.s. he is currently running around the house in a tutu. I tried it on him for someone who ordered one for their daughter. I didn't expect him to LIKE it! I'd better not post a picture though, his dad may not be very happy. (oh, I'll probably sneak one up here later-lol)

Zach saying yellow

video

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Favorite Color

Zach has a new favorite color. YELLOW! Though I think it's mostly because he likes to say yellow. It has evolved to become "WO-Wo-wo-wo-wo-wo-wo" as it trails off.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Nesting some more...

Are you all sick of my nesting projects yet? Well.... sorry. There may be one or two more yet to come. I've still got almost a month left so there's still time!

So, this was my project today. The nursing cover a.k.a. "hooter hider". I had one that I used for Zach but I wanted to make it a little more schnazy this time around so I did some research and combined/tweaked a few tutorials from some blogs. (mostly Make It and Love it) and here's what I came up with. I made it extra wide, I think it's about 40 inches or so, because everyone I talked to wished they had a bit more on the sides so they could wrap it around themselves. It's also reversible so I can use the brown side with stripe-y accents...
Or the Stripe-y side with brown accents...
Yes, it matches the car seat cover and blanket I made earlier. Just wait till you see the seat belt covers I made yesterday that also match. I just need to add some Velcro then I'll share them with you.

The list is getting shorter! The day is getting nearer- AHHHHH!!!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Another nesting project- I LOVE my hubby!

I don't know if any of you have heard of the "I'm and Organizing Junkie" blog but I came across it a while back and I've been trying to follow her tips to streamline our home a bit before the new arrival. One BIG issue in my kitchen and I would say the worst in the house is my pantry. I've tried to organize it over and over again but just could not figure out how to use the space. It has these really deep corner areas that are virtually impossible to reach once there are other items placed nearby. AND since we tend to shop in bulk (we live a bit too close to Sam's Club I'm afraid) we end up with LOTS of the things we use most, not to mention we don't have much space to work with anyway. Basically, if there was a disaster I'm pretty sure we could survive for a good while. We may not have perfectly round meals but we will have something to eat at least.

SO, this month the Organizing Junkie is having a challenge (here) and I thought that it would be the perfect reason to attack this space. NOW.... DON'T JUDGE!!! I can't believe I'm about to show you this!




This... is/was... my pantry......
AHHHHH!!! Are you blinded? Here's a closer look...
Oh... it gets worse... this is the floor.
OK... I need to take a few deep breaths(In... Out... In... Out) Basically, if you couldn't tell, there is no rhyme or reason. Everything just gets stuffed in wherever there may-or may not- be a space. And the floor! OH MY! Things either get tossed in or they fall off the over crowded shelves. It's humiliating!
And, do you know how hard it is to get something off the top shelf when you can't step up to the shelf and you have a giant belly throwing off your balance? It's not pretty. So it was time to change and Jason came home one day last week to find this entire mess ON or AROUND the kitchen table and counters. I think he about fainted. I told him not to panic and that I had a plan. I shared my plan with him and we headed to Home Depot for his part of the assignment.

See, I love all of the storage systems out there but we're on a bit of a tight budget and I wasn't sure they would even work for what I needed them for so we created our own.

TA DA!!!
What better way to use a useless corner than a nifty rolling can storage shelf.

Can I just say... I LOVE MY HUSBAND!! He took my vision and made it real. I would have done it myself but I'm not the best person to trust with sharp objects (I have several scars to prove it) So I've been grounded from using power tools. But how AWESOME is this!
It holds at least 36 cans though we actually put a few more on top. AND, best of all is that it uses those deep dark corners perfectly.
I filled it with some of our Sams Club stuff that we usually have on hand in large quantities and then I organized the rest of the space.

SO... without further adieu... the big reveal.
Large boxes on the bottom, boxed food on the lowest shelf, cans above that sorted by type/meal. Glass pans are actually down a shelf so they are easier for me to reach and snacks are above them.

OH! See the popcorn maker at the very bottom? I had totally lost that in the mess and now I know where it is and can actually get to it. Hooray! AND... there. is. a. FLOOR!!
Sorry about all the caps. I'm excited, what can I say? Isn't that little shelf so cool?!?

I still feel there there's something to be desired with the cans but for now I think they will work just fine.
Believe it or not there is actually MORE in the pantry now than there was before. I brought in some overflow that had made it's way into the laundry room. Now everything is in one spot.
The pictures don't really do it justice to be honest. You can't see the upper shelves. I've put all of my leftover containers into a labeled tub to keep them all in one place and all of our cake/brownie boxes are up there with their labels lined up for easy finding. Now it will be so much easier to find what I need and I'll do a lot less re-buying stuff just because I can't find it. Thank you Organizing Junkie! You have inspired me and I feel like I can actually breath now when I'm in my kitchen. I'm not in danger of a cave in from my pantry. Now... wish me luck with the contest. There's some cool prizes that I could really use to keep up my home transformation.

Now, I'm pretty sure the questions they asked were mostly answered before but here they are just to make it easy on the judges.

1. Toughest part- Those deep corners. I just felt like everything I stuck in the corners was lost for good. My solution was to create the rolling shelf unit for one area and then I put large class pans that were only used for holidays above that. On the top shelf I used a larger bin to corral my small leftover storage containers and since it was larger it could use the corner space but still be easily accessed when needed.
2. What changes or habits will help me keep it that way- The first thing I'm doing is to try and cook with what I've got, along with being able to check for odd ingredients easier with the new organization. That will help me keep from overfilling the space with a stock of items I don't use often. Also if an area, like the snack shelf, is full... we probably don't need more. The other rule is- No more floor storage! If it doesn't fit on the shelves it doesn't belong.
3. Where did the purged items go- I was actually surprised to find a good amount of expired food here so that made purging pretty easy. Into the trash it went. I also donated some of my glass pans (I had several of the same pan) to a group called "Freecycle". That opened up a lot of space! The surprising thing was that, once I was better organized, I actually ended up being able to add items to the space that had been overflowing into my laundry room. Since we are trying to keep like things together, and it makes looking for what you need so much easier, I was really glad to be able to reclaim some of my laundry room.
4. What creative storage solutions did you use- Most obviously, the rolling shelf. I've had it in there for a few weeks now and I LOVE it! I might have my hubby build another one for some of the other canned food as well. I also have just a simple wash bin on the top shelf that keeps all of my small storage containers (the ones I use for leftovers etc.) AND their lids in one area. It's also easier for me to get to them since I'm so short. I can just bring down the whole bin and then find what I need inside. I also chose a purpose for each shelf and the food in that area is not allowed to overflow into the other areas. For example, I just have to NOT buy more snacks till some are gone. I have bowls and storage on the top shelf. Then snacks, like grahm crackers and cookies for my son on the next shelf. Under that are the glass pans that used to be spread over 2 shelves, but now there are fewer so I could condense at the same time as making them easier to reach. (remember-short person here!) As for the rest of the canned food. It doesn't look pretty but I have it organized as well. I sorted it by type (soup, veggie, etc.) or meal if it was something I made a lot of. There's a whole section for taco soup! We LOVE our taco soup. Below that is the boxed food and the side shelves are similarly organized with cookbooks, cake mixes, etc. all grouped together. I guess that should all have been a "duh" thing but I'm new to this! It's baby steps and I'm pretty proud of it.
5. Why should I win- This is the first challenge that I've decided to join in on and I actually chose the toughest spot in my house. It may be a "small space" but it stores enough stuff to be considered an entire room! I got creative with my rolling shelf and I set boundaries to keep everything contained. Basically, I was able to transform what seemed like nothing more than a large hole in my wall into a working pantry area. I LOVE it! We are a family of 3 (1 more on the way any day now!) and our house is only about 900 sq feet so we are pretty cramped. I've felt like the walls were moving in on me every day of this pregnancy. Organizing this space took a huge load off my shoulders because even if I don't win I'm excited now I know that if I can conquer this beast there is no spot in my house that can't be organized. It IS possible to fit all four of us in this space- and Comfortably too!

(Pick ME!)


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Blue's Clues

video

I've decided I'm going to try to document more of Zach's communications. Cute ways he says the things he says. So here's "Boo Boo" or Blue's Clues in non-toddler-speak.

Nesting some more!

Wow! This is REALLY nesting now. Yesterday, I brought in 2 boxes full of baby items from our garage so that I could do a bit of inventory before the new arrival. Sadly, it looked like he was going to have to live with a bunch of dingy, yellow stained clothes. I didn't think I had put them away looking so shabby but I guess that's what a couple of year's storage will do to stuff. I decided it wouldn't be any fun to put my brand new little boy in old yucky looking clothes so I decided to do a little experiment.


I started by spraying them down with Shout and then scrubbing vigorously with an old toothbrush. I was surprised to see that some of the stains seemed to already be fading. Then I stuck everything in a big bucket of hot water and Biz (I left a few of the more delicate items in a separate bucket with cold water, just in case). Then, this morning I ran them through the wash.
I was SO EXCITED when I started to fold everything because almost every single stain was GONE! There were a few tiny PJs that I was sure were ruined but they look bran new.
So I got to do the inventory.
It's actually a little funny to look at because Zach was such a big baby (8 lbs) and he grew so fast that the newborn sizes and the 0-3 month sizes are pretty meager. The items in the NB size were actually only squeezed into once or twice. If you look at the picture we have a snow suit on the top row and then the second row is the newborn size. There's 4 PJs (one with tags still on it) 2 outfits and a bunch of undershirts from the hospital. (I LOVE those!)
The next row is the 0-3 month stuff. 4 PJs, 4 outfits and a bunch of onsies. The rest is all 3-6 months, 2 PJs and a bunch of outfits. So now I'm a bit torn... should I start watching the sales and 2nd hand stores for those smaller sizes or am I going to have another monster child? I think I'm just going to wait a while and see. It sure was fun to sort through everything though. Maybe I'm starting to get a little excited... Maybe...
OH, I didn't want to leave Zach out of all the projecting so this is what I did for HIM yesterday. I put together a new eye spy bag for him. It was actually from our relief society Super Saturday this last weekend. I was just helping with one of the other projects so I didn't have time to complete it. I haven't put the names of the items on it yet but I have them written down to transfer later. I just hate my handwriting so I'm procrastinating. He think's it's pretty cool, although he was a bit distressed at first when he realized the airplane was trapped!

ALL the snowmen die!

I think Zach decided it was actually a bit humorous when his snowmen died because just after we rebuilt his snowman from the previous tragedy, He slaughtered them all!
video

Can snowmen die?

I'm not really a huge fan of cold. Somewhere, deep inside me still lives and Arizona girl and the idea of purposefully plunging into the cold outdoors just doesn't really appeal to me. BUT, after a fairly good snow storm, I wasn't about to deny my sweet boy his opportunity. This snow was PERFECT for snow men. So I brought in a bucket and we set to work. I guess, We is more of I in this case however. As I built, Zach would shovel snow into his little bowl. After I had built four snow men I stepped away to pull some laundry out of the dryer when I heard a very pitiful voice crying "Die, Die!"

This is what I found
video
Apparently one of our snowmen had died and Zach was examining it's head. I didn't know he knew the word "Die" let alone what it meant! We quickly rebuilt his snowman and he was back to being as happy as a clam.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Set 2

Three more pages done from Zach's second year. Hooray! I'm halfway there!
Here's April, May and June.
It's been really fun to look through our scrapbook pages with Zach. He get's so excited about them. This is WAY better than reading the same Dr Seuss, Blue's Clues, or Thomas books.

As for the latest updates on Zach. He's just starting to feel better from some kind of yucky bug. We're thinking it was probably bronchitis. It made for a few rough nights as he would wake up with a fever and then either me or Jason would lie down with him until he went back to sleep only to wake up again a few hours later. Still, he was a real trooper and didn't complain much during the day. We just had a lot of cuddle time. (no complaints there!)

Zach has now discovered a new obsession. BLUE'S CLUES! I'm not sure how we didn't get sucked in sooner. (could it be our lack of cable tv?) Each morning and throughout the day he will run to the TV and start to say, very emphatically, "BOO BOO". Which is cute enough in itself but my favorite part is that he opens and closes his hands just like the main character in the show does whenever he says "Blues Clues". (If you aren't familiar with the show, it's a bit like a variation on jazz hands.) I have a video of it but, unfortunately, I haven't been able to get it to upload for some reason. Sorry!
:::warning, MOM zone ahead. Beware of excessive bragging and googling over one's own child. I realize it's just the normal progression of a toddler but I'm his mom so I'm allowed to be excited about it. So THERE!:::
Now, even though I'm not a HUGE fan of letting my kid watch a bunch of TV I'm actually pretty excited about this one because it seems to have spurred a sudden influx of linguistics in my otherwise mute toddler. He gets totally involved. He'll jump up and run to the TV to point to the "COO" and he even "sings" along with a few of the songs. Just within the last few days he has started to answer the questions on the show... with REAL words. This morning he finished Joe's sentence "The handy dandy..." and Zach shouted "NOTEBOOK". I was totally caught off guard. This is my child who had a vocabulary of maybe 12 words only a week or so ago. He even told me the colors of each of his trains this morning. He obviously knew which were "Boo" since he is a follower of Blue's Clues and all. But he kept going with "Geen" and "Le Le Loh"(yellow, in case you couldn't guess). The one that actually surprised me was that he knew Toby the train was "Bown". I've been just bursting with pride ever since. I know it doesn't sound like a big deal but when it's your kid, somehow even the silliest things can really get you. SO, I apologize once again for my bragging.


Friday, February 5, 2010

Oh! He's growing up.

What happened to my sweet little baby?
Apparently, he grew up and became a goofy toddler. Making silly faces has become a favorite game.
(p.s. yes Grandma, the sty on his eye hasn't changed a bit.)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

More nesting

I can officially bring home baby "In style" and cozy if I should say so myself. This is a pattern I actually tried for Zach (semi-successfully) but the original pattern is older and made for the 3-point car seat style and not the 5 point harness that mine has. So I had to adjust it a bit. That's easier said than done for me! I'm creative in the sense that I like to create using other people's instructions. I'm not so good at coming up with my own. I had to take a few deep cleansing breaths before I could bring myself to slash great big long holes in my pretty blanket. Now I just have to decide if I want to add velcro to hold it in place or if it's fine the way it is. For reasons stated above, I'm leaning toward leaving it. ; )
Jason picked out the Dino print flannel for the inside. He said my classic beige was too feminine.
See how cozy! Zach loves to bundle his bears up in the seat. Then he rocks them back and forth. I think it will be good practice because currently he's a bit vigorous... we are practicing the "Soft" rocking. Let's see... what should I work on next.

Crafty To Do List:
3 more Scrapbook pages (Zach)
Burp Rags (Baby)
Cars Pillowcase (Zach)
Tie Onesies (Baby)

See, I'm trying to alternate a bit so that Zach doesn't feel neglected. Maybe I'll try to actually post a picture with a real person in it later. Sorry for all the crafty stuff. I HAVE to show it to SOMEONE! Jason just sort of grunts when I proudly display my creations for him. I guess coordinating fabrics are just not really his thing. Though, I think I kinda like him that way. LOL!

Monday, February 1, 2010

2nd Year in Review

I mentioned earlier that I had been reviewing our old pictures for a project I wanted to work on for Zach. We were reading stories the other night and decided to go through our scrapbooks. I told him the stories associated with the pictures and he seemed to love every second. But, as I got to the end of my scrapbooking I realized I haven't scrapbooked a SINGLE page since Zach was born! Shameful! So I decided I would make a goal of documenting his stories. I used to be an avid scrap booker but parenthood obviously changed that for me. I have ended up with so many pictures I guess it was just overwhelming since my old style was to basically use every picture I could get my hands on. Then along came the digital age and the normal parental obsession with my child and I have ended up with WAY more pictures than you could possibly imagine. So, I had to start somewhere. My goal is to do one page for each month of Zach's 2nd year. (I'll get the first year later... I hope!) No more trying to cram as many pictures on a page as possible. I decided to just pick a few favorites and when I'm done I can go back and add to it. But this way I'll have a good documentation of his year instead of 15 pages in January and nothing after that.


SO, without further adieu (any idea what that really means?) I present

JANUARY 2009
Zach wants to be just like his dad and heads straight for the stethoscope the moment Jason walks through the door.

FEBRUARY 2009
Every kid has to have the bathtub Mohawk photo-shoot right?
MARCH 2009
The Gundersen's came by for a visit and Grandma walked Zach around our living room until he finally drifted off. Great trick for a wound up kid.
And all three. I am actually pretty excited about how they turned out. I know they aren't anything super fancy but I do still have 9 more to do and I'm kinda hoping to finish before I need to start on some pages for the next sibling.
Like I said, this nesting thing is producing some semi-random projects and it will be interesting to see what I actually do accomplish in the next few weeks. Sounds like Zach is waking up from his nap so my crafty time will have to be put on hold until his next sleep cycle. What should I work on next....

Nesting


With about 6 weeks left things are going WAY too fast and I have started to pick up all sorts of projects that "must" be completed before the wee one arrives. The first on the list was a car seat tent and Hooray! I completed it! With Zach we would just throw a blanket over the seat and that was it, this time I decided to copy a few versions I've seen out and about that let you cover the seat but leave the handle exposed to it's easier to carry. I put flannel on one side to make it a bit warmer. I'm not sure what the weather will be like but I figure it's better to be on the warmer side of things. I don't know that the fabrics are a perfect match with the classic stripes on one side and the goofy monkeys on the other but I thought it would be kinda fun that way. Now I just need to finish the semi-coordinating blanket to go IN the seat. Needless to say, I am DEFINITELY nesting. Well, I'd better get back to it then. The days are flying by and there is still WAY too much to get done.