2015 Year in Review


Until halfway through 2015 I was still on a blogging break. I came back so that I could share tutorials and tips for the peasant dresses that we make for charity.

I also did a doll sized version of the teen dress and posted a free pattern.

Of course, I made Easter dresses for my girls this year, although photographing and blogging about them was quite delayed. I did some upcycling and kept everything in a navy and white color scheme.

The girls got new dresses for the 4th of July again this year. They were peasant dresses like we make for charity, but with added bows.

In other sewing, I did two quiet books...

The biggest project this year was the girls' bedroom. We did a collage wall using a lot of thrift store frames and my husband built them farmhouse twin beds.

Yeah, their room is not nearly that clean right now. I think we need to work on that. ;)
There were a lot of other projects that I didn't include here. It is good to reflect like this. Sometimes it feels like I don't get anything done around here- the cooking, cleaning, and laundry all need done again. It is nice to accomplish something permanent. In 2016, I will show you the rest of the Christmas crafts we made and I have some recipes and free patterns and tutorials still in draft mode. Yes, I am holding out on y'all. I also have a lot of projects that need to be finished, so I am hoping to get some of those finished. Yeah, I think I said that last year.
Happy New Year!!!

Jelly of the Month Club Christmas Gift Idea


My family likes to do some homemade gifts and food is usually a good option because then the guys are happy, too. This year, for a few people, I decided to up my game a bit and do a "Jelly of the Month Club" with 12 assorted jams and jellies.

The ideal game plan was to do them throughout the year and eliminate stress in December. Well, I did half of them and then life happened. Things got busy and jam making was lower on my priorities list. I threw the last 6 together at the last minute, but WOW did my house smell good!  They are just the 4oz. jars, because that way, if they didn't like it, there was only a little. I hope that doesn't happen, though.

I love the assortment of colors and textures!I printed out little certificates, tied baker's twine around them, and printed out labels (from HERE).

Here is what I made (recipes linked as available):

Sour Cherry Jam
Gingerbread Jelly
Blackberry Jam
Blueberry Preserves
Orange Marmalade- I didn't really follow this- I zested the peels and didn't leave many of the thicker edges in. I hear they are good for you, but I just didn't want to do it.
Strawberry Lemon Marmalade
Cranberry Orange Pear Jam
Apple Butter
Caramel Spice Pear Butter
Apple Pie Jam
Carrot Cake Jam
Christmas Jam

Because it drives me crazy that the labels weren't lined up in the first picture...

I think I might try this again next year. It was fun to try out some new recipes and, after all, it is the gift that keeps on giving... the whole year! ;)

Link Parties where I sometimes hang out...

Flower Quilted Rag Edge Flannel Baby Blanket

I finally dusted off my sewing machine after a month-long break and I am definitely out of practice!
One of the things I made was this flannel baby blanket for part of a shower gift. I am pretty sure I have seen a little saying about using your "good fabric" for your favorite people. I had been hoarding this pretty purple stuff because I couldn't bear to part with it unless I deemed the recipient worthy. 
I used my own tutorial to make it, but I tired something a little different this time. Instead of doing diagonal lines, I decided to create a giant flower motif that matched the front pattern. It is pretty hard to see...

I really love the print on this!!!

I did a decorative stitch around the edge that matched the ferns, but was too lazy to change my presser foot. I spent A LOT of time seam ripping the one full side I sewed before I realized it didn't look right. But, I like to pray for the recipient as I sew/seam-rip, so this little girl got a lot of extra prayers!

I hope that the baby girl who uses it will love it as much as I do!

If you want to make your own, just click on the picture below for the tutorial!

Flannel Rag Edge Baby Blanket Tutorial

An Announcement...


It shouldn't take a tragedy to get my attention.

You see, I am a wife and mother first. The Lord has given me a wonderful husband and six precious children. I am so thankful for each one of them.
However, our days are numbered and tomorrow is not promised to anyone. 
If today was your last day on this Earth, how would you have spent it?
If today was the last day you had with one of your loved ones, what would you remember?
I want to make memories, instead of making things. 
I want to read books to my toddlers instead of reading e-mails.
I want to paint tiny fingernails instead of snowmen and pumpkins and signs.
After all, my best artwork is made using sidewalk chalk and inspired by the ridiculous requests of giggling girls.
I have met many wonderful people through my etsy shop. I am honored they have allowed me to have a small part of special times in their lives and I was blessed to be able to run a successful shop for a season in my life.
However, my customers can find other vendors to make their items. My children only have one mother. I am irreplaceable to them.

I have met many special friends through blogging. Women who have lifted me up in prayer or sent me e-mails to reach out in dark times. Women who have celebrated with me in times of great joy. I am so thankful for each one of them and hope to keep in touch.
I am thankful for the inspiration of others from their own little corners of this big, crazy thing they call the world wide web. I hope that I have been a help to others in return.
However, I want to fill my camera card with pictures of my five beautiful, silly girls and my handsome young man. (Yes, the boy is becoming a young man so much like his father these days.) There are plenty of bloggers out there. My children only have one mother.
Oh, I will still do crafty projects. That is part of a creative outlet for me. Plus, my girls have a loooooong, ever growing list of things they want me to make for them. I don't want them to wait for their turn anymore. I want them to come first.  If I make "things," I want to make things that will be remembered.

There is nothing wrong with selling on etsy or blogging. There are lots of people who can do it all with grace and ease. But I am in a season of my life where I am spread too thin and I need to prioritize. It just isn't working for me.

I have decided to close my shop and stop blogging for awhile. I will trust God with the rest because I feel this is what I need to do. I am so thankful for the support that I have been given from so many people over the past 5 years.

Time is precious. It is a gift that is not given to everyone. I want to try to make the most of it.