Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Coralling the drop zone.

The dreaded drop zone. Ugh.

A never ending pile of papers, shoes, grocery lists, keys, cellphones... They accumulate by the door until you need them and then they have magically vanished to some yet undiscovered place in the house. Which means an additional search before you are actually out the door.

We enter through our back door the majority of the time (seeing that the driveway is out back and all..). Not so conveniently, this door opens right into the kitchen. Which means our little rolling island, originally intended as additional usable counter space ended up a catch-all for all sorts of unthinkable pocket debris. Finally, I decided to wrangle our drop zone into order and made this:

drop zone organizer 2

A handy dandy drop zone organizer! I specifically designed this to handle what we needed. We had already been using the bulletin board with hooks for keys, so I build from that. Small pockets for coupons, stamps, and shoppers cards. A dedicated pen pocket and a place for scratch paper (an absolute necessity for shopping lists or we will forget everything we need and come home with Cheez-its).

drop zone organizer

The big pocket on the bottom is for the boy's wallet and phone, as he is always (always) laying them somewhere else and can't find them.

And it fits nicely next to the fridge while keeping random stuff off food prep surfaces (such a pet peeve!)

drp zone organizer 3
Most people stage with pretty fruity like green apples, oranges or lemons. However, we are lousy with sweet potatoes right now so that's what ya' get! :)

Hey, did you notice my new red walls?!? Finally got the kitchen painted, hurrah! More pics to follow when we get everything else back in order...

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Itty bitty = really cute!

I haven't decided what it is about human nature that makes us so attracted to small things. Kittens, puppies, doll house furniture...they get me every time. I'm considering taking up knitting just so I can fill my house with mini cable sweaters this winter.

Umm, can it get much cuter?

And I totally can't get over the tiny heirloom peppers we got from our CSA:

Mini peppers
Awwww, the wittle peppers are so cute!

And then there are the obvious small ones that are so darn cute: little babies and their oh so small clothes. Since everyone around me is coming up preggers, I figured that was a good excuse to buy another craft book, this time one for the youngins. I chose Amy Butler's Little Stitches.

Baby Booties

Darling. The pictures are just ridiculously cute, and the projects inspired, like the rest of Amy's books. All I've made so far is the booties. Not too bad, but I do have to agree with some of the Amazon.com reviews that say there are not enough illustrations. You actually have to read (bummer, I know). But as I've been working on patterns myself I know that the illustrations are MUCH harder than they seem, so I can't blame them too much for being a little sparse.

Overall, I'd say go for this book as there is always room for a little more itty bitty cuteness!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Blank wall no more!

We had a lonely blank wall in the living room that was mocking me. Such a sad, unloved expanse of bare wall was just begging for something happy. But I had been asked not to put anything large or precious there as it would be in the throwing area for the dart board (I know, I know, but the boy needs his fun). So I was at a loss...until now.

Meet my new art, courtesy of ebay and my fabric stash:

embroidery hoop art

Yippee! And I love that they are in embroidery hoops so I can just pull them off the wall and "embellish" as I see fit.

I started on this embellishment here, with a cute little hedgehog from Pimp Stitch.

Here he is in progress:

unfinished hedgehog

And the finished result:

hedgehog embroidery

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Fun with photomanipulation

So fun, and so easy...

It's addicting, but if you want to try, go here: www.photofunia.com

Don't say I didn't warn you!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Pimp my Swiffer

I love my Swiffer Vac.


With hardwood floors, two furry cats, and a boy who is a messy cook, I feel like I swiffer constantly. The vac is extra special because it collects the cat fur tumbleweeds that appear at random and lets me finish my swiffering in peace.

But here's the rub. With swiffering at least once a day, I feel tad guilty about all the swiffer sheet thingys I use. So guilty that the partially used swiffer sheet stays on the vac, parked in a corner somewhere until it gets used enough (sometimes I flip it around cause the front is dirty but the back isn't...is that pathetic?).

So I had to bust out a new solution. Meet my swiffer improvements:

Microfiber towels I found in the auto care department of Target. 12 towels that are 14 in by 14 in. Under $10 I think...much more economical than anything in the actual cleaning department.

I cut them in half and serged the cut edge. Super bummed that I didn't have awesome orange thread to serge with, but it works. These things are fuzzy though, so it did require a post-serge cleaning of the serger.

Ta-da! It's pimped, alright :) The towel just barely fits into those little prong thingys that hold the sheets, so make sure you have one that is at least 7 in wide when cut. Works pretty well too! Picks up a lot of dirt and washes well too. Now I'm free of the swiffer sheets!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Friday Distractions - Political version

Just in case you are missing Sarah and Joe now that their debate is over, or if you are getting antsy waiting for Barack and John to kick it in Nashville next week, you can make your own political finger puppets at foldUScanidate.com

Frankly, the videos (especially the first one) are cute and worth a watch. What a way to waste a Friday afternoon! :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Everything new is old again

I love photoshop. It's so much fun to enhance photos, take out that spinach between your teeth, or make collages. But it's really time consuming to get the good stuff, which is why I go ga-ga for internet sites that do the work for you. Recently, I found this one:

dining table


Ha! Too fun! Now my vintage table is really vintage! :)

I went a little crazy with this. Remember the photo from Monday?


And now my cake-eating boy is an old man:

I could do this all day...

The site is really easy to use, even if it is in Japanese. Just click browse to find the photo on your computer then hit the blue button. When the page reloads, right click to save your new old photo.