Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Kentucky Derby and Giant Hats

I decided to update my hat this year and will show off the new photo.  It is impossible to take a selfie wearing a rather large hat with a lot of stuff happening on it so here is what it looks like now.

I cut out the large feathers that were sticking out the back.  I looped the long tulle and ribbons back in and glued them.  I also added a lot more loops of ribbon.  I plan on wearing the ribbon part in the front...without naming names, think "Her Royal Highness" style. 

And on with the old blog.  I call it a tutorial but I did not take photos when making this hat in 2011, but I do explain the process. 

Yeah, it is another one of my blog posts about making a crazy hat - but the Kentucky Derby is less than a week away so it is necessary!

You know if you are going anyplace that is showing the race (party, racetrack, wagering establishment, your living room, etc.) you secretly want to wear one of those big crazy hats.

Well, fear not! They are super easy to make and really not that expensive. (even less expensive if you hoard all of your leftovers from previous crafts as I do)

I made this crazy hat last year.  We went to Vegas (as we have done for several years) and I thought I should step up the experience by wearing a hat befitting of both the derby and for Las Vegas.

I was planning on being super cheap so I started by looking at the items I had on hand and went from there. I had white ostrich feathers and several kinds of black and white ribbon as well as tulle in black and white.

So it was settled.  My hat would be black and white.  Great, because I had a zebra print top that was just screaming VEGAS.

I started out by finding a large hat.  (since the Derby falls on Cinco de Mayo this year, how fun would it be to make a hat using one of those big straw sombreros you get from Chevy's?  You know you have one or know someone who was unfortunate enough to be at Chevy's on their birthday)

Anyway, I knew I did not want to invest a lot of money so I went to Burlington.  They had a very nice selection of large hats.  I chose the largest cheapest hat that I could get.  So far I am at $7.99 plus tax on my hat.  Don't worry if it is not the color you want, that can easily be fixed with spray paint.  Mine started out the natural color and I had black spray paint on hand to make my hat base black.  Once you have your hat the color you want, then heat up that glue gun because it is time to get to work.

I had several ostrich feathers left over from my wedding  so I learned that if you used an exacto knife, you could split them down the middle to get two pieces of feathery fringe.  Beings that my hat was going to Vegas, I glued that feathery fringe around the brim to make it pimp style.

Then I glued ribbon around the edge to hide where the feathers were glued on.  Then it is time to decorate the rest of the hat.  I used more feathers to stick off the hat and added ribbon and tulle around the band as well as bows and tails out the back. (see above picture for the back view)

The below pictures were from Vegas last year. You know the previous night was good when I end up with a picture of my hat with a tall drink.  Somehow though I was still up and ready to go and watch the Derby in the sports bet area at the Hilton. 

If BIG HATS are not your thing, then you can venture on over to my postings on making the small hats here and here

Saturday, April 28, 2012

The NO High Fructose Corn Syrup CHALLENGE!

I was going to post this on facebook, but the post got really long so here it is.

I challenge you to remove High Fructose Corn Syrup from your diet.

You are probably tired of reading and hearing about it this week as there was a study that came out that linked HFCS to Autism.  Then from that study came the numerous articles and blogs from people on both sides of it.

I personally believe there is a link between HFCS and Autism.  I also believe that HFCS has a big hand in our country's obesity problem.

Yes it is a sweetener, but it is also a preservative to prolong the shelf life on foods.  It is in everything like soda, juices, jelly, bread, crackers, cookies, BBQ sauce, ketchup, salad dressings, ice cream -yeah, I am stopping the list here because it is in EVERYTHING.  Let me add though that HFCS is even in items like fruit cups.  Why?  Fruit has its own sugar.  Why oh why are they adding sugar syrup for the fruit to swim in? Oh yeah, because it can keep that product good for so much longer.

PS - It is not just limited to foods.  Check the labels on the liquid pain relievers you are giving to your babies and the liquid cough or cold medicine you are taking.  Hmm.. "just a spoon full of high fructose corn syrup makes the medicine go down" doesn't flow as nice does it?

I will tell you it is a bitch to read the labels.  Did you know that the order that the ingredients are listed is in relation to the quantity?  Go ahead and look at your ketchup, jelly, or BBQ sauce and see HFCS listed as the number one ingredient.

We stopped buying items containing HFCS years ago.  It was after the birth of our child and we wanted him to eat foods that had the least amount of crap in it.

The thing that happened right away - the husband lost like 15-20 pounds.  Just from switching to foods that do not contain HFCS.  He eats sandwiches, cookies, and chips in his lunch every day.  Her didn't cut back on quantity. Just simply switching to products with no HFCS, he lost weight.  Men are like that.  They can lose weight so easily.  Stupid men.  I of course did not lose weight.

Growing up I didn't know anyone that was labeled as ADD or ADHD. Yeah, I am linking HFCS to ADD and ADHD too.  Why? Because as I mentioned earlier, it is in everything.  So when you make your kid his PBJ sandwich and give him crackers and a fruit cup, he is most likely getting HFCS in every item that you give him.  So you are sugaring that kid up.  OH? You don't make his lunch? You let him eat at the school?  Yeah, I am sure there are even more preservatives in that.

There has to be something to this right?.  If you look back, HFCS started replacing sugar in the 80's and now is the primary sweetener.  We just don't process it the same way as regular sugar.

I know what you are doing, you are googling for more info, did you find the articles talking about some HFCS having high levels of mercury?  Yeah, that can't be good.

Anyhow, I will get off my soapbox - but before I do, remember that I am challenging you to go HFCS free.  See if you feel a little better, see if your kids are changing a little, see if anyone in your family loses a little weight.  What is it going to hurt? Just a little time to read labels at the store?  Isn't your family worth it? 

Friday, April 27, 2012

Dear Tornado...

Dear Tornado, please take my neighbor, her house, and all contents of her lot away...

Let me forward to my end question-  Should I write a nice letter to my neighbor telling her how I am over her crap or do I just contact the City?

Okay, now let me back up and start with my ranty story.

Have you ever had one of "those" neighbors?  You know, the kind where you wish a tornado would suck up everything on their lot?

Let me share an expensive lesson that I have learned.  If you are house hunting and you look at a house where they have put up a new privacy fence on one side of the yard, peek over that other side.  Also, visit that house several times and at different times of the day.  Yeah, the people that I bought the house from knew they wouldn't be able to sell if people seen the neighbor's yard.

My neighbor (I totally do not know her name because I have tried to ignore her existence) is probably mid 30's.  She goes to school and works full-time.

She is never home.  Not until it is her bedtime.  I know what you are thinking "what's the big deal? Sounds like a neighbor that will never bother you."

Nope.  Since she is not home, she does NOTHING with her house or yard.  There is someone that shows up once a month and cuts the grass.  Yes.  Once a month.  They do not do any other trimming so any weeds growing along the house and fences are now trees.  Yes.  Her weeds are now trees.  She has a few weed trees taller than her house.

Let me apologize for the photos - since I took them from my window you can see my screens.

Here is the side view of her house.  This is what I get to look at. You will notice that this is a SMALL house.  Maybe 500 square feet.  You will also notice one of her weed trees and her pile of trash that somehow did not make it into either her trashcan or her recycle bin.  This could be because even though trash gets picked up every week, she only seems to be able to put the trash out once a month.  Yes.  This trash pile will grow for another week or so. (yeah, there was this one time where she ripped out all the carpet in her house. Most likely for the reasons below. That carpet sat out on the side of her house for months).

But that is not the only problem.

She has  the United Nations of dogs in that tiny house.

  1. Hungary is represented by her Puli
  2. Germany with her Great Dane (yes, there is a Great Dane in that tiny house)
  3. Mexico with her Chihuahua (are you getting a ridiculous picture now of the Great Dane and the Chihuahua?)
  4. United States with her Terrier mix.  He looks kind of like a Schnauzer but not quite.  So melting pot of the US he is.

So four dogs.  Two years ago there was a different dog in place of the Chihuahua. At that time she also had two cats in the house and a rabbit in the back yard.  I have not seen the cats in the windows for a while and the rabbit hutch has been vacant.

Let me bring up again that she is NOT HOME.  These dogs are in her house all day.  They bark constantly at anyone walking by.  Let me add that we live near a college, across the street from a laundromat, and she is close to the corner so the kids get on and off the bus there.  Lots of pedestrian traffic.  These dogs bark all freaking day.

Now I don't want to make it sound like I dislike dogs.  NO.  I love dogs and animals more than most people.  But part of loving them is being there for them.

So when she does get home and they finally get to go outside, they bark even more.  It is the excited barks saying "OH MY GOD I NEVER THOUGHT WE WOULD SEE THE LIGHT OF DAY AGAIN!"

Let me bring you back to the fact mentioned above about her not taking care of her yard.

Here is the view of her house from my bedroom window.  As you can see the trash pile is not limited to the side of the house.  Also you may notice the lack of grass in this yard.  The overabundance of dogs has destroyed the grass and she does not reseed.
When it rains this is a muddy mess of dog feces.  I cannot open any windows on this side of my house and depending on how the wind is blowing, I cannot be in my yard without wanting to vomit.

The lady who is renting the building on the other side of her for her sewing or upholstery business has made friends with her and has a dog also.  Her dog does not bark but here is how I guess they became friends.  Upholstery lady does not leash her dog.  She has the door open to her business and her dog lays in the front yard grass of shit house neighbor.  So somehow they came up with a deal where upholstery lady will bring her dog over to the yard and let out shit house's dogs.  So more louder barking during the day.  YAY!

Let me side bar on upholstery lady.  She has big windows in the front of her business.  You can see her in there working.  You can also see the piles of crap and clutter.  Hmm, if I were to run a business where I sewed things for people - I WOULD FREAKING SEW SOME AWESOME CURTAINS TO HIDE MY CRAP AND CLUTTER!!!!

Years ago I didn't care.  We didn't do much in our yard because we were either traveling or working. We also figured we would only be in this house for a few years. Things have changed. Housing market crashed.  Then several blocks near us were used for off campus housing and then finally torn down to allow for a new development.  It has looked like a bomb went off around here for a few years.  There is no way we would be able to sell until that is finished.  So now that we have a toddler that wants to play in the back yard constantly something has to be done.

We have been in this house for six years now.  It feels like too much time has passed for me to say anything to her.  I have probably not spoken to her in two years because of the fact she is never home.  I thought about writing her a letter and telling her as nicely as possible to clean her shit up but part of me feels I should just contact the code enforcement officer as she has been breaking ordinances for years. (She has too many dogs in her house per city code, I am sure that the dogs are not registered, the dogs bark constantly, and the yard breaks several nuisance codes.) But I know that I would want someone to approach me before contacting the authorities.

So what do I do? Contact her first or pretend she has had a six year warning?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Boy Toys

Here is what happened at 3am.  Toddler cried I got up to check on him.  He just was crying for a little something to drink.  He wanted juice but he got water instead. I ended up stepping on several toys in the dark.  Finally got back into bed to listen to the husband snore for a few hours.  This post is the result of laying there thinking.

I started thinking about boy toys.

Boy toys.  That makes me instantly think of the "Boy Toy" belt buckle Madonna wore back in the 80's.

But that isn't the type of boy toys I am talking about.  I am talking about the gazillions of toys littering my house.

I started thinking how these toys can be broken down into about four categories.

  1.  Small and Hard - This type of toy will fit perfectly in the arch of your bare foot and will have one protruding piece that will stab you in such a way that you will jump straight up and land on another toy. Hot wheels cars are a great example of this.  Another example that is in my house are little plastic dinosaurs that do not melt from your anger.
  2. Ridiculously over-sized - These toys often times appear to be cutesy (large car with googly eyes) but do not let that fool you.  These are designed to not scoot out of the way and will cause you to stub your toes.  Examples of these also include any kind of play set that category 1 can be used with (like the carrier for 100 Hot wheels cars).
  3. Takes batteries - we are not talking taking one battery.  We are talking anywhere from 2-8 AA or AAA batteries.  These toys suck the life out of the battery within minutes.  They are designed not only to make you go mad with the noise but they will make you go broke buying new batteries.  This category can often times be paired with category 2 (like the over sized cutesy car that takes 4 AA batteries in the car and 3AAA batteries in the remote control).
  4. Soft and squishy - While they somehow multiply, the main issue is dealing with the coveting dog.  I have not met a dog that doesn't want to tear the stuffing out of those little squishy toys. 

You will always find category 1 in the middle of the night...or should I say it will always find you.  As if you didn't have enough to worry about dodging that squeaky floorboard in the doorway (seriously, what is the deal with that?  Why is the one squeaky floorboard in the house the one in the doorway to the toddler's room?).  When you go to check on your child.  This is when category 1 will strike.

Sometimes there is a chain reaction of which can only be compared to things that happen in the movie Home Alone.  You know, where the pain from a category 1 will cause you to come in contact with a category 2 and that pain will cause you to hit a category 3 which makes noise and wakes the child up for good.  Yeah, this didn't happen this morning but it has happened in the past. You almost never remember stepping on a category 4.  These are only remembered if you are picking up all of the fluff from one that the dog has taken fondness to.

This was as far as i got while laying awake in bed.  I finally found sleep but it wasn't enough.

So today there were things to do.  On the way back from the morning outing, I found my favorite kind of boy toy - the kind that go outside.  This one had a big "FREE" sign on it and it was sitting there on the curb.  Good thing I live close and my sister was with me because trying to get this large sandbox with back hoe attached into the car was NOT working.  She retrieved the larger vehicle to get the prize back home. I really lucked out because yeah, the scoop on the back hoe was broken, but these people had gotten the replacement parts and they were sitting there new in the box.  That is this evening's chore, fixing and cleaning that thing up.

Well, the toddler is demanding we get to work this.  Until next time.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Shutterfly Photo Books

Mother's Day is coming up so I have been working on some projects which is the reason for no post yesterday.  They are photo books on Shutterfly.  I wont be sharing the actual books, but I will share the idea.

There are other sites where you can make the photo books but I just like Shutterfly better.

A little back story - I was never going to have kids and I ended up having one (this I call the Disney Conspiracy and might be a blog post another time) --and boy have I documented the crap out of his life! Seriously I have.  A gazillion photos on Facebook and a youtube channel are my proof.

After my child was a year old, I decided that it would be neat to have a photo book documenting the first year of his life.  So the first book was titled " INSERT NAME, Birth to Birthday Cake"

I did a two page spread on each month.  The first year I put a lot of text in the book telling all of his accomplishments (crawling, first tooth, etc). The books in the following years simply had the month and year with collages of pictures from that month. 

I made the original book for me and then thought what a great gift that would be to my mother and mother-in-laws.  Because yeah, you will find out if you haven't already that once there is a grandchild that they are the only thing that matter.

So I ended up ordering four of these puppies.  One for me, one for my mother, one for the husband's mother, and one for the husband's step-mother.  Yeah, this can get pricey.  Fortunately Shutterfly sends out emails with special offers so I order these when they offer the 40% off!

These books were of course a hit and some cried profusely while looking at the book.  So since I wanted to continue making them for me, I have continued making them for the grandparents.  I am finishing up volume 3 today.

I might be a little obsessed about these photo books too.  I have made one for each Christmas containing all the Christmas Day pictures...and memorable vacations, etc.  Shutterfly owns me.

So go to Shutterfly and sign up to start getting your discounts.

Any idea on how to make this link to Shutterfly? I have no clue what I am doing. 
Is Shutterfly going to come after me for posting this?

Monday, April 23, 2012

St. Patrick's Day Hats

In my posting on the World Series Trophy Hat last week, I had mentioned posting about my St. Patrick's Day hats.

I made these using red plastic cups and old CDs.

  • scissors
  • hot glue gun/glue sticks
  • plastic cups
  • cardboard
  • old CDs (or more cardboard if you can cut nice circles)
  • felt
  • ribbons/tulle/feathers/flair
  • pipe cleaner
  • headband

 I cut off the top of the cup and glued on a piece of cardboard, then covered with felt.  I used old CDs (yeah, someone has Tax Cut 2007 and I know there was an old copy of Deus Ex in the mix too) because I am not great at cutting perfect circles and I was making several hats.  I melted a few holes in the CD to feed the pipe cleaners through for attaching to the headbands and then covered with felt also. I tried various felts and glitter craft foam.  The plain old felt worked the best.  The bottom portion of the cup is what I glued to the base so that the top of the hat was a little larger.  I thought this gave a whimsical look.

 Then you can decorate with various ribbons, tulle, feathers, etc.  I made 7 of these for our group to wear in Dogtown for St. Patrick's Day and they were all a little different.

 I wore mine with the decoration toward the back, but they can be worn either way.

It is going to seem that all I do is make crazy hats, but I am probably going to put another hat posting up in a week or so for making a big Kentucky Derby Hat.

Draw Something Already!

Well, I didn't post yesterday.  I hadn't planned on posting daily but it seemed to just happen that way so now I kind of feel like I failed. Oh well.  Maybe two posts today. We will see.

Right now I want to post about something that I might be a little slow at getting into.

Draw Something.

Yeah, I know what you're thinking.  I am just now joining the blog bandwagon, only now have discovered Draw Something - what next?  Am I going to get a myspace account?  Maybe set up a homepage on geocities?  Get an AOL email account?

It is not like I hadn't heard of Draw Something.  I am not under the rock all of the time.  I just assumed that it was only for the iphone elite.  Wrong.  It is available for Android also.

I had seen articles and compilations (like this link )of the best Draw Something pics.  These things are pretty amazing - and yeah,  I was thinking I could do something along those lines.


Now, I can draw pretty decent but this app just makes me look like I am drawing for the first time and maybe have just obtained vision.  I downloaded the free version to try it out because I am cheap - wait, we went with "thrifty" when I did the glue face peel.  Anyway, this is limited on colors so that limits the colors on my stick figures.

I have mine linked to my Facebook so I even sent out a bunch of  "repulsive Rembrandts" to Facebook friends.  Sorry guys. 

Because you want to laugh too, here are some examples of my game play.

I chose the word Avengers thinking "oh, I have red, yellow, and blue - I can make Iron Man and Captain America"   In my head I had this great image unfurling. It was going to be so awesome.

Let me apologize first for my technology not allowing screen caps (because, yes these are photos taken with my camera of my cell phone), and secondly for the artwork you are about to see.
This is what my poor opponent had to look and make her guess.  Seriously.  I am not even joking.  I had enough room so I drew Thor.  Good thing I had yellow for his hair and drew out that mallet.  As I realized the drawing was not awesome in the least bit, I wrote "MAY 4TH" thinking the release date of the movie would help.  Good Lord, did I just start writing today also?   If I had green I guess I would have worked a green hulky blob on there too.  Yikes.  Good thing this game gives you the letters to choose from, otherwise how would anyone ever win?

Here is another game where I chose The Lorax to draw.  Earlier in the day I had draw Marge (Simpson) for this same person using the yellow as skin color so I thought on this one if I wrote "SEUSS" at the bottom it would just fix everything.

Then I had to draw New York.  What did I start drawing? Two buildings that haven't been standing in New York for more than a decade. I add some other crooked buildings and then think, oh, I will draw the Statue of Liberty.  Seriously, I still only have the basic colors.  There is no gray, no green - so black spiky head thing with a stick of butter?

 This one I thought I did pretty good.  I had to draw "Pujols"  My opponent has not guessed on this one yet. Let's hope she is not a fan of my blog or else she will get the answer.
And my final share - Yes -   I had to draw "MC Hammer"  I will admit that I peed myself a little laughing at the thought of this one.  I got Hammer pants down just fine...thought I would work in a stop sign for the "Stop Hammer time" - yeah, I have a hard time drawing a straight line and now I am attempting an octagon?  Are you kidding me?  I drew and redrew that thing and used that eraser to try and fix it.  Ug.

I have only had this game for 24 hours.  I have never laughed so much in a 24 hour period.  Seriously.  My ribs hurt. I start laughing when I look at the choices and imagine in my head how they will be butchered, I laugh hysterically while I am drawing them, and then I have tears streaming down my face as I watch the replay of my "pitiful Picasso" as my friend has to try and guess what the hell I was going for.

I will end up buying this app so I have more options like a larger variety of words.  I have had a few repeat words because I have several games going.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Puke-a-palooza and Soccer

Today was supposed to be a great day.  We were to leave early and head across the state to visit family that we hadn't seen in years.  Actually it was going to be the first time my complete immediate family was all in the same place at the same time since Christmas.  This seems ridiculous in itself since we live relatively close to each other.  Work schedules and busy lives make us ships that pass in the night.

Here is were things went wrong. We will just call it "toddler puke-a-palooza" and leave it at that.  Sure we had wipes and extra change of clothes and could have cleaned him up, but what about me? I felt disgusting and being uncertain of what caused it, we felt it best to head back home.  Sure, I am super bummed and I could have sucked it up and smelled like vomit for the day...but what If we would be subjecting others to having to ride home from the visit with this horror...  SIGH

After getting home and cleaning up everything is fine.  Just fine. The child is playing like nothing ever happened and the husband is happy, he has been watching soccer all day.


Soccer. I hate soccer on tv.  The droning crowd and their ridiculous songs/chants.

Now I am not a 100% soccer hater.  I have been to soccer games as the husband has taken me to various games in our dating career.   I think to try and make me love soccer.  You can't force soccer love.  But I will tell you, these things are so much more fun to go to in person - that is if you go to a city or game that has a strong fan base.

There is nothing like being in the US Supporter section and passing that huge flag up to the people behind you (this was from a USA vs Mexico game I went to ages ago).

That is all I will say about Soccer.  It sucks on TV and is more exciting in person.

And now since the husband has noticed I was bitching about soccer in my blog, we get to watch something else.

Finally something goes my way today.

Friday, April 20, 2012

420, PSAs, and reality TV

I started writing this post this morning before running errands, I tried to jump back in and then it got garbled and all over the place.  I was going to scrap it but WTH, may as well stick it out here.

It is 420.  That means different things to different people.  It could mean you are super stoked to light it up or that you are rolling your eyes at those who do.

I do not smoke marijuana.  My drug of choice has always been alcohol. Personally I think marijuana should be legal.  It sure would save a lot of money and time enforcing that law and think of the taxes made off of it. Besides, it seems so harmless when compared to people trying to find their legal highs using bath salts which aren't bath salts for the bath.

Bath salts.  Let's make a chemical cocktail and call it something that is harmless and could potentially get into the hands of children.  It sounds so ridiculous.  So somewhere someone said "take these bath salts, it will get you high" and someone else said "Oh, okay. Taking bath salts for a high seems totally legitimate. Sign me up."  Then the word spread.

Writing about 420 has gotten me into thinking about how things were so different when I was growing up than it is now.  The television I watched was always spouting out anti-drug PSA commercials.  Even at the end of the cartoons.  He-Man and GI Joe always were on board with trying to get you to be a good kid.  Remember all of the after school specials?

Here is the one PSA I remember most though.  The dad scolding the kid about marijuana and the kid yelling back "You, alright.  I learned it by watching you"

Really, you don't see a whole lot of anti-drug PSAs anymore.  I always see the anti-bullying ones and the get out and exercise ones.  Did we go from being drug abusers to becoming big fat bullies?  I know the answer is a big fat YES to the big fat part as the US is one of the fattest countries.

I remember the television containing more family-type shows having good messages.  Is there even anything like  that anymore?  Where have all the Cosby Shows, Growing Pains, and Mr. Belvederes gone?

Do we just have too many reality shows? Is that the problem? Watching rich celebrities do stupid things and then when they start doing them on drugs then they can crossover to the rehab show.  Or maybe if you don't like the celebrities, then you can watch the teenage moms or hoarders?  Maybe kids today aspire to become Pawnstars or Ice Road Truckers so all of this is just fine.

See. This rambles.

Remember kids.  Bath salts are for bath and crack is whack.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

nifty thrifty

While I could easily go into a rant involving lack of sleep (because that is forever my life), today's post is about being cheap.

Oh, let's change that to thrifty.  There are tons of thrifty alternatives for everything with there being more focus on recycling, re-purposing, and up-cycling...but really I think the economy being in the crapper has become the mother of invention.

This one though I had read about a number of years ago so I cannot give credit to where I first heard of this.  We are talking the kind of number of years that didn't have Pinterest, Facebook, or the bazillions of blogs--some of you cannot imagine this time and if you by chance can, you might just go into shock.  Someone grab the smelling salts!

Anyhow, today's post is about using Elmer's glue as a face peel. 


Cheap non-toxic Elmer's school glue that you can get for super cheap as a face peel.
Those masks and pore strips are expensive and they are just basically a type of paste that you slather on and peel off when they are dry.  So why wouldn't this work?  So today I tried out this thrifty face peel option.

     Things I have learned today:

  • If you slather it on too thick - it takes forever to dry.
  • If you slather it on too thin - then it peels off in tiny pieces.  
  • If you are klutzy - you will still get your hair stuck in it even if you have it pulled back.

Yeah, this picture is kind of gross, but you can see how it peels off like a regular face peel.  Also see how I really need to do something with that chipping nail polish.

Did it pull gunk out of pores?  Yes. 
Did it feel the same when it pulled out the tiny hairs like the pore strips do? Yes.  
Is it easy to clean up? Yes, as long as you get the washable kind.

Has it caused any bad effects? Only time will tell.  Maybe there will be a posting tomorrow on rashes caused by school glue.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

baseball, husbands, toddlers, and sleep...

I stayed up too late last night. 1am. I figured it would be okay.  I mentioned before that the husband snores and keeps me awake. He was going on an early flight for a baseball game in Atlanta so I thought I would be sleeping in a little.


Firstly the toddler had some sort of nightmare and was running screaming through the house. He doesn't want to go back to bed.  He keeps screaming out "mommy" and crying.  So I dump him into the middle of our bed.  Right next to the husband who is dead to the world.  He sleeps and kicks me while the husband starts his snoring. I lay there awake.  I am thinking "oh, it can't be long now.  His alarm will have to go off soon."

Oh, it does.  Does he hear it? Nope.  Dead to the world.  So I start shaking him to get him up.  Yay, sleep might be in my grasp.  I scoot the child over to give him empty space to kick at and I snuggle in for sleep.

Bark.  Bark. Bark.

I have to hand it to the dog.  She knew it was early and she needed to be quiet.  She was doing her "whisper bark" as I call it.  Did the husband hear it?  No.  How could he?  He was in the shower.  So I get up, let the dog in, and snuggle back into bed.  Sleep.  Almost sleep.

The husband - wait, let's backtrack to before he went to bed.  I was awake when he got home from work.  A rarity.  He didn't stay late and I was staying up late.  He made a big deal about needing to get ready for bed because of the early flight.  His getting ready is not the same as mine.  Mine involves readying everything possible for every scenario that might happen (this will be handy in the event of a zombie apocalypse).  I don't know what his getting ready involved since now he is opening the door rooting around for clothes.  He doesn't know what to wear to the game.  He is not a fan for either team in particular.  This trip is a boys trip and continuation of what him and I talked about doing last year. We thought it would be fun to see every ballpark or at least not visit the same park twice.  It is hard to just get up and travel when you have a toddler.  So we only did four ballparks.  Oh, This is where I could introduce some photos into this blog and give you something to look at besides my rant.
 Busch Stadium - Cards vs Padres. We had pretty good seats.  Gotta love Stubhub.
 Miller Park - My Cardinals were playing.  We lost the game bad
 - but who knew that we would win the World Series?  Seriously.  CRAZY!
 Dodger Stadium  - We were in San Diego for the Comic-Con and went up to LA for the day.  I had never been on the west coast unless you count switching planes to get to Vegas. I was not impressed with the Dodger Dogs but their garlic butter fries...OMG DROOOOOOL. Seriously the garlic fries could be a blog post on their own.
Chase Field - Diamondbacks vs Whites Sox.  Chicago White Sox are my husband's team. I had never been to Phoenix before either.  Dry.  DRY.  I am not a fan.

So this year my husband and his friends are going to hit some other ballparks.  I guess he gets to check some things off his list while he is guaranteed a baby sitter for the child.  Well, you know what?  The child and I might go do something fun without him.

Anyway, back to my unsleepiful sleepytime.  So the husband is rooting around for clothes.  The light in the closet has a pull chain.  Oh look, the chain is stuck and he is fighting with it.  UG.  Finally the husband is victorious over the light bulb and he leaves.  he leaves for the trip.

Hooray! It is time for sleep....until the sounds of the mowers start.  My neighbor has hired a lawn service to mow his lawn.  Now this seems just as ridiculous with a full night of sleep versus a few hours.  We live in an older part of town. Our block has those smaller homes that were slapped up mid century.  You know the ones.  The little white boxes with asbestos shingles.  Small houses with small yards.  And my neighbor who is probably early 30's and does construction type work and is home in the evenings has hired a lawn service.  Today was the first visit that woke me up.  Two people with a truck and trailer full of lawn equipment.  They were both mowing at one point, then the guy in the front used a weed eater and leaf blower to finish up.  did he travel down the side of the house or back? No.  So I can still gaze upon the weeds on the side of his house while I wash dishes.  20 minutes.  20 minutes.  Why couldn't that 20 minutes be in the afternoon?  The mowers woke up the child who was chattering away.  There is no going back.  Sleep is over.  The End.

Breakfast made. Text from husband lets me know he made it.  He sends me a pic with caption that says "Rain again! Really"  Since we had a rain delay on our game Saturday.  So I text back "did you take the ponchos?"  I know he didn't.  I am the one that is prepared.  I am the one that bought rain ponchos and had them (the cheap ones that are two in a pack), an umbrella, and a nicer rain suit in a backpack for the game we went to Saturday.  I was ready to save a small family along with ourselves from the rain to a game that was not far from our house.  He flew to another state without anything and was also complaining of the cold so he most likely didn't take a backpack either.

Anyway, I get onto Facebook to see what is going on.  This is my social interaction now that I am not working full-time. (that story will be a different blog post for a different day).  Sure I could go do some play groups with other mommies but really, other mommies annoy me for the most part.  Yeah, sure I share stories of my kid with friends and family.  Usually it is telling of something hilarious or answering a question that is asked.  But mommies in those groups are nonstop chatter about the kids.  Blah.  I want to talk about other things.  Anyhow, I copied this next bit directly from my FB post because a friend suggested this would be a good blog post...  

I have four FB friends with birthdays today. Four. I have less FB friends than days of the year so if you think about it, that is a lot on my friends list to share a birthday. It made me count back to see what special occasion made this a popular birthday. It was summer. Then this makes me start singing "Summer Nights" from Grease. Now it is stuck in my head. So now I have no choice but to attach the video so everyone can sing along.

I named my birthday friends and posted a link to the video.  Yeah, I am still singing "summer lovin' having a blaaaaaaaast" in my head over and over.  I will need to put in something to sing along with to get this out of my head.

Guess it is now time to get lunch going.  Today's culinary treat is going to be hotdogs.  Maybe I will pretend we are at the game too and charge us $5 each for them.

I made another hat and I want to put it out there first

Okay, I got the first post out of the way.  Now onto the second post.  This one is what made me want to finally take that step that I had been thinking of taking for years.  Figured I had better get my project out there before it ends up on Pinterest without me being the one to put it there.

I am crafty and have an imagination and since I was going to game 2 to watch my St. Louis Cardinals receive their 2011 World Series rings, I thought I would make myself a hat.  The silly mini hat fascinator types. I had success at making a few hats earlier this year for other occasions and came up with an awesome idea.  Most of my best ideas come while I lay awake listening to my husband snore.  I am a light sleeper, he snores loud, I don't sleep much. How did this union ever come to be?  I guess that could be a future blog on our shared geekiness.

Anyhow, I was laying there thinking how awesome it would be to make a hat that was the Commissioner's Trophy.  I had bamboo skewers in the cabinet that I thought would work perfectly for the flags. I could just glue a bead on top, paper triangles for the flags, paint them silver and gold and BAM! It would be the World Series Trophy.

Here is how I brought this brain blob into reality and hopefully my instructions make sense...
I first gathered up the supplies.

  • sharpie
  • ruler
  • wire cutters
  • scissors
  • bamboo skewers (like for fondue or kabobs) 
  • small beads 
  • paper
  • gold and silver paint 
  • two sheets light gray felt
  • cardboard
  • hot glue gun and plenty of glue
  • pipe cleaners or wire
  • ribbons/tulle/flair
  • cardinals (or whatever goes with your team if by chance we don't go 12 for 12)
  • headband to attach the hat to 

Most of the items you will hopefully have on hand if you are a crafty, the others are not that expensive.  I had everything except the felt, cardinals, the beaded piece I refer to as "flair" and the red tulle.  I only spent about $10 getting the other things I needed. Stores like Michael's, Hobby Lobby, and JoAnn's run sales and have coupons on their websites for things like the ribbon, flair, and birds (these birds came 3 to a card for $4 at Hobby Lobby and I used the 40% off one item coupon from their website). The felt is pretty cheap, mine was .29 a sheet at Michael's. The plastic headband was leftover from a previous project but came from the Dollar Deals store and are sold three for $1.  I am clueless on the skewers but I cannot imagine them being too expensive.

So first off, the most time consuming part of this project. Flags. There are 30 flags on the current Commissioner's Trophy.  That is one for each MLB team.  I laid out 16 of the skewers (find the straightest ones for the longer flags. My longer ones are kind of wonky and it bothers me, but not so much to redo the hat) and cut one a little less than half the height of the tallest one.  Then with a ruler I marked a diagonal line from the shortest to the tallest and then cut them with wire cutters.  Then I set aside the shortest and tallest one and then the remaining skewers were cut so there were two of each size.  I cut a little flag out of folded paper and used that as a template for the other 29.  I glued beads on the top of the skewer and then the flags on.

 Above are the poles painted silver with the flags being painted gold.  Silver spray paint would have been best for this and a LOT quicker, but I had acrylic so I used a brush.
 So I figured my hat would need to be short and straight. I guess this will be a "boater" style hat.  I used cardboard from a soda box for making this hat.  I first figured out how large I wanted the brim of the hat to be (I used a cd for the template) and then I made the top part just a bit smaller so the hat would have a narrow brim.  The above picture shows the top portion of the hat and I am starting to cover with the felt. Once the felt was on, I cut a strip of paper to the length of the diameter of this hat.  This is where a little math comes into play.  I measured out and marked on the strip of paper where my flags needed to go so I could mark that onto the hat.
 Here I have both pieces of the hat covered in felt. The bottom center of the pic you can see where I have the hat is marked where the flags will be attached.
Lots of hot glue and TADA! Here are the flags attached.  Looks pretty good.  *Word of caution, count your flags if you have a toddler that thinks the flags look like something they need to touch.  I found two flags after the fact.  I thought I had measured wrong and adjusted the flags only to find them later. ARG!  Also, I sprayed clear acrylic over the whole thing at this step. We were going to have a ton of rain and I wasn't sure how the paper flags would do.

Before gluing the top onto the brim, poke holes and feed the pipe cleaner through.  this will be how the hat attaches to the headband. Don't attach the headband until the end.  It is easier to decorate the hat when you can sit it flat on the table.
 Here are my ribbons, tulle, cardinals, and flair that will go on the hat. Then just decorate as your imagination sees fit.
 Here is the side view of the hat.  I only attached two of the cardinals. The other is on the backside of the hat.
 Here is the front view.  This hat has a lot of steps, but It didn't take me all that long. Maybe because of my practice with other hat projects earlier this year (I will do a post on the St. Pat's hats soon.  They were made with old cds and red Solo cups covered in felt). 
Me at the game waiting out the rain delay.  I gave lots of high-fives, posed for lots of pictures, and answered a lot of questions on how it came to be.  This is what made me think days later how there were pictures of me floating about that I had no control over.  So this is me taking back control.  Now I just need to go to a few more games to show it off a bit more.  Hmm, maybe I will stick this on Pinterest myself, but if you beat me to it...please give me credit where credit is due.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

the first post...

Here it is.
My first blog and first post.  I don't read all that many blogs and haven't started at the beginning of their very first blog post, but I imagine that the very first post is something like this.  Explaining all that the blog hopes to share and become.  So far today the hardest part was trying to come up with the name of the blog.  It was tough.  It should be about what it is but also be interesting.  Here is how I started out on Facebook this morning 

"So I was thinking of starting a blog. I have had this thought on and off for years but never made that next step. Procrastination, lack of time...but here I go, the next step. Now the hold up is "what is the best blog site for a blog idiot?" I was thinking Blogger since all I had to do was log in with my gmail account....but then it came to naming the blog. eek. i was thinking "Rants and Crafts" but then maybe an entry wouldn't be particularly ranty or crafty. what if that is the entry that accidentally goes viral? will there be backlash? is this the rant that should be my first blog entry? maybe i should add "stories" to the title. "Stories, Rants, and Crafts" no. I don't like that. maybe i don't like "crafts" in the title. that reminds me of horrible craft shows. oh look how i started using caps when appropriate but now i don't even care. somebody kick me." 

After much discussion in the thread, I came up with "brain blobs and verbal vomit" on my own.  My ideas/projects/crafts being the "brain blobs" and my stories and rants being the "verbal vomit"

Sure brain blobs and verbal vomit do not paint a pretty picture when thought of in the literal sense...but it is accurate.

This blog will have silly stories, rants where you swear I am PMSing, crafty projects with how to pictures, and much more...that is if I keep it up.  So far I have used capital letters where I was supposed to and periods.  That will most likely die out.  

There.  First entry complete I think.