Archive for the 'likes & irks' Category

Oct 19 2008

light box + wire jewelry class =

Published by under crafty,likes & irks,photos

(still working on the “light” in “lightbox”)

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Oct 15 2008

Stuff I Have Made In The Past 3 Months

Maybe not THREE months, but it feels like I’ve been making or trying out a lot of things that I’ve neglected to report on. Some of which is DARN CUTE or DARN TASTY!

Darn cute:

Baby Blanket

Big Footed Bunny with reversable dress (this shot was still in progress, never got a completed shot):
big footed bunny Dress on side A

big footed bunnyDress on side B

Granola (it was OK at best):

And with no photo accompaniment,
Monkey Bread

Potato soup (it was ok, but got much better as it aged)

Beef Stew (Still have some of this in the fridge, and it was Yum, despite some technical difficulties)

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting (orange, with jack-o-lantern faces painted on) (I guess I could still take some photos of these) (for some reason everytime I eat one, I think of our friend Kurt, who loves anything with pumpkin – Kurt, you would love these)

I also have a bunch of things on deck that I am aching to get started on.

I need, nay, I REQUIRE myself to make chili in the very near future, along with some cornbread.

Butternut Squash soup

Butternut squash risotto (this one may be dropped)

Braided Challah Bread

Picture Day dress for Jocelyn
I saw this adorable corderoy jumper at Kolh’s yesterday that I am going to try to make for Jocelyn. It was a dark chocolate brown with a pink long sleeved knit shirt underneath. Pink and brown always make me swoon, so sweet. We’ll see if this actually gets accomplished. There was another one next to it, pink with cute little princess embroidery embellishments along the bottom.

It is also at

Very sweet. I am not going to repeat my mistake from last year and put her in a busy print for picture day. NO SIR.

Circle Skirt for Jocelyn
This, I actually did for Jocelyn last night, using the Fold Over Elastic that Angry Chicken has been going on about. Now, with normal elastic, you measure the waist and then make the elastic 2 inches shorter. I cut the elastic about 5 inches shorter with some trepidation, and it is still too loose. I should have just not worried about the actual measurement and just stretched it as tight as I could while sewing it on. There will be sewing and adjustments made tonight. I also don’t like the look of the full circle of the skirt, so I may be fiddling around with using only half a circle as well.
Final note on this skirt, I cut into some beloved fabric that I had been saving forever, but looking at the HUGE STACK OF PINK fabric, I shook it off and cut (the fabric I used is the top right in the picture in that link). As my mother always says, there will always be cute fabric, no need to hoard. I will be showing this skirt off when I finally work out the kinks.


Picture taken last night, immediately after finishing

Taken this morning.

Hopefully James got some good pictures with the camera, as these iphone photos leave much to be desired. Still, I am VERY proud of myself, as this sucker pretty much came directly out of my head, no patterns involved (though some tulle inspiration probably came from the dress I saw in Kohl’s).

And finally, I have ordered a bunch of stuff to start beading jewelry again. I say “again” like I used to do it last week, but I haven’t done anything with beads since high school, when me & friends used to string beads onto fishing line, melt the knot with a lighter and call it good. I have actually ordered some tools and got a book and even am going to take a CLASS! My initial order should have been here by now, but due to my recent ordering of fabric on the internet for my mother, I accidently put down an address that was half my own, and half my mom’s, for my bead order. Who knows where it is now, DOH. So this, “Did it come did it come??!” ending with deflation and RE-ordering has made me super excited to GET GOING ALREADY!

– amy will string you along with a trinket or two

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Oct 14 2008

quick weekend recap

Otherwise known as:

Pumpkin patch with corn maze (tricksier this year!)(we made it out alive)
pumpkin cupcakes with detailed instructions and help given by Jocelyn
visit to firehouse’ open house, complete with HELICOPTER parked out front
t-ball game
t-ball snacks
home to make frosting with detailed instructions and help given by jocelyn (must be orange! we need black for jackolantern features! LET ME HOLD THE MIXER!)
Toy Story 2
bed, oh thank god, bed, Zzzzzzzzz..

train ride up to Clifton for a Clifton festival
colored hair spraying (jocelyn)
face painting (jocelyn)
getting of balloons (whoops, they were from republicans, oh well)
park playing
denial of buying children tickets for big bouncy thingees
tears shed
accidental letting go of balloon (Jocelyn)
denial of buying ANYTHING that has to be carried home
tears shed
seeing of McCain | Palin stickers EVERYWHERE
seeing NO ONE at McCain|Palin booth, Obama|Biden booth very busy, with all stickers gone
democratic balloon obtained (Jocelyn)
Obama|Biden car bumper sticker obtained
Sighting of Wonder Sarah Palin Woman
(Bipartisan balloons in the family! W00T!)
losing of democratic balloon
tears shed
bipartisanship lasted an entire 5 minutes
Bye bye clifton, drove into fairfax
good vanilla purchased at whole foods (at least i hope, it looks suspicious to me)
book store with kids while
apple store (james) to exchange white recalled outlet thingees
soft serve Kline’s ice cream in Manassas on the way home
and then to cap the day off… 20 minutes of washing and rewashing Jocelyn’s hair to get all the pink out….
and putting my Obama|Biden sticker in my car in the dark. I didn’t do that great a job. I have never put a bumper sticker on my car.

James and I stealthily took the kids to their respective schools w/out dropping a hint that it was a day off for us.
Watched a few Futurama’s
Went and saw Burn After Reading (not sure I recommend it)
Lazy long lunch at Rio Grande
Sat and watched kids playing in the water fountain (aren’t they COLD??)
best buy (Sleeping Beauty & Speed Racer purchased)
book store (james)
old navy & kohl’s (me)(new clothes for kids purchased)
kid pickup
surprise dinner at mcdonalds (for the kids, we were still stuffed from lunch)




Children Posed for Picture In Corn Maze

Children NOT Posed for Picture In Corn Maze

Ethan Shuffling Into Third Base

Jocelyn Girl-Running Into Third Base

Jocelyn’s Pink Festival Hair That Later Took 2 Shampoos To Get Out

Jocelyn’s Butterfly Face Painting

Very Busy Democrat Booth

Totally Dead Republican Booth Directly Opposite Democrat Booth
(to be fair, they could have just been grouped around Wonder Sarah Palin Woman)

Sarah Palin Wonder Woman
Sarah Palin Wonder Woman

Handsome Man Relaxing at Rio Grande

Busy weekend for the Panders.

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Sep 11 2008

Dishes, Light Sabres and Pink Hair, OH MY!

Published by under amy's head,daily,house,kids,likes & irks

James and I met with Ethan’s teacher, and also one of a school counselor, and I feel a lot better. I think we are seeing a lot of improvement, and the day in question was just a tough day. He has gotten greens all week (since then) and yesterday he even went through the entire day w/out getting his panther taken away (yay!)

Jocelyn wasn’t feeling well yesterday morning. I took her temperature which was normal, and was coughing it up to a case of the grumpies, when she threw up. I was not in the room and I have a feeling it was more like a “spit up” situation than throw up, but I couldn’t in good conscious send her in after that, so she stayed home and I tried to work anyway.

Ethan was very grumpy at having to go to school when his sister got to stay home, so I promised I’d pick him up at school (instead of going to daycare afterward). Jocelyn and I brought their money jars, which had several weeks allowances socked away in them, and after we picked him up from school, we went to target – me, to forward my obsession with finding the perfect new dishes to buy, and them, to while away the time pointing to something that costs $80, and asking me, “Do I have enough money for that?” before settling on something they actually can afford.

I have NO IDEA why (ok maybe a little idea why), or even HOW Jocelyn spotted this, but she choose a fake hair extension. A bright PINK hair extension.

jocelyn in pink hair

I had no idea how this fake hair is supposed to be applied, but I treated it like a very awkward pony tail elastic and muddled through anyway.

jocelyn with pink hair

Ethan chose a light saber.

ethan with red light sabre

It does not have any batteries, and so doesn’t make any sounds, but that just means he gets to make the sounds himself.

ethan with red light sabre

He choose red, despite my pointing out that that’s the bad guys color, but he insisted (red being his favorite color).

Yes, these are taken still at Target, because Ethan had his toy open the SECOND the cashier rang it up and handed it to him, and Jocelyn insisted on getting her pink hair on.

ethan and jocelyn
And yes. I let her wear a tutu to target. I don’t usually allow dress up clothes outside the house, but for some reason I let her. Maybe because she’s getting to big to get away with this much longer.. might as well let her do it now while she can! (I’d like to go to Target in a tutu! Am I too big?)

After they picked out their toys, I made the mistake of walking them through the halloween section, where they decided to be NEW characters for halloween instead of the same characters as last year. DOH! Jocelyn decided she wants to be a witch (though this actually would be easy to do at home, and actually, I think I may have turned her towards COWGIRL, which I would love to make for her again) and Ethan wants to be Darth Vader. (“I already have the light sabre for it!”)

Of course, there was much moaning and groaning when I dragged them through housewares. The dishes were a bust. Although I really like this pattern, but I don’t like the shape of the dishes at all. Too traditional.

carousel dishes at target
These are made by Corelle. I like a -lot- of the Corelle patterns, but finally ruled the brand out completely. No matter the pattern, the bowls only have a colored stripe around the rim. I want my bowls to look pretty too! So no Corelle.

These ones I liked too, but were on clearance and didn’t have everything available.

dishes at target

I especially like how I could buy them all separately, because we don’t use mugs, and invariably when we purches the 16 piece place settings for 4.. we have shelves of mugs we never use. And if we’re REALLY unlucky… saucers too. Blech.

All this culminated in a huge internet dish-hunt last night (interrupted by Jocelyn REPEATEDLY getting out of bed, long past her bedtime grrr) which if you’re curious, you can see on flickr. However, I just have to say that I LOVE THESE DISHES SO MUCH:

target melamine zak pazio

And look! No mugs! Sadly, they break all my rules of what my new dishes must entail (no melamine being the first rule, I’m sorry melamine, but we NEED to be able to microwave our dishes, and you don’t let us! At least, not w/out experiencing 3rd degree burns.1), but if they ever show up in target stores, they may find their way home ANYWAY.)

Here is my #1 favorite right now, and they’re on sale, so I could get 12 place settings for cheap! However, since they’re on sale …. there are no serving dishes available in this pattern. Doh. So now I’m wondering if I should go with some other pattern that I can also get platters and serving bowls in? Our kitchen is always kind of woefully unequipped when it comes to serving dishes (even serving utensils) so I’m thinking yes, I should – especially when the “runners up” so to speak are also super awesome.

My #1 favorite: Mikasa Autumn Frost
mikasa autumn frost

Runner up: Mikasa Red Berries

I love the red berries, but I would prefer a squarish plate. This might be a deal breaker for me. This pattern however, has a CRAZY amount of serving dish choices, so I have to consider it:

mikasa red berries

Another runner up: Mikasa Wispy Floral

mikasa wispy floral

Isn’t it pretty?? I really do like this one a lot. Some serving dishes, but not many. This is probably my #2 choice after Autumn Frost.

I have found it amusing how my aesthetic runs from super simple, minimal design and clean lines (all these mikasa patterns for example) and the crazy psychodelic patterns with super saturated colors (the choices above from Target). I’m not going to think about what that says about me as a person. Something we don’t need to pick at, right?

I’m definitely not going to rush this, as even if these choices go away… well, there’s sure to be some more awesome patterns out soon.

– amy spent the night dreaming of dishes, and getting clawed by a kitty

  1. Melamine material heats up much faster than normal, so if you put something on a melamine plate and nuke it, your food may still be cold, but the plate will burn you when you go to pull it out! It’s too bad, because I love melamine.

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Aug 29 2008

Kid Creations (Ethan Lego Creations)

Published by under crafty,kids,likes & irks,photos

I haven’t showcased any kid creations for a while, but rest assured it’s not because there hasn’t been any creativity! It’s because Mommy is LAZY!

But in honor of the upcoming BRICK FAIR (which we are VERY excited about in our house! This weekend! Still time to make plans to go!) here is one of Ethan’s recent creations. (And by “recent” I mean, “has already been destroyed to make something even BETTER.”)

You can imagine Ethan’s GLEE when his class at his new (daycare) school went on a field trip to THE LEGO STORE! He came back with a clone trooper bobble-dude (the name used in MY childhood household for minifigs*) on a keychain which, through my winning charm and mommy-ness, Ethan gave to ME instead of Daddy. (HA!) (I RAWK!)


He also came home with several lego catalog/magazines which he has pored over nonstop ever since.

It’s going to be an AWESOME weekend at the brick fair.

*Just so you realize how much legos played a part in my childhood, I was actually not all that interested in them. My brothers, however, were very interested in them. Santa brought legos to my brothers every christmas, a tradition that lives on in our household to this day, except he brings them to everyone (mommy and daddy included) instead of just the boys. My brothers had a bucket filled to the brim with legos and my mother required a sheet put down before any were poured out. That’s how many there were. My brother Larry’s dog is now named, you guessed it, ‘Lego’. So, I guess you could say I’ve been training for carefully stepping over lego bricks for 34 years now!


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Aug 25 2008


Published by under amy's head,kids,likes & irks

Jocelyn pooped in her bed in the night.

As you can imagine, there was quite a mess in the morning. Luckily, it stayed on the lower half of the bed (no poop-hair or face, thankfully).

I got her showered and bathed off, and her sheets soaking in the toilet (think crusty) and the rest of her stuff into the washer. The stench in her room was awful. Opened the window and turned on the fan. I hope it’s gone by the time we get home.

The smell in my nostrils still remains. I keep lifting my hands up to my face and inhaling just to make sure I don’t smell like poop. I don’t.

But the memory is still haunting me.


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Aug 22 2008

Jocelyn’s Baby Quilt

Not a quilt for a baby, but a quilt made out of baby clothes.

Although actually, it’s more like made out of toddler clothes.

Except no, it’s not just clothes, it’s her adorable DRESSES!

I should really call it Jocelyn’s Toddler Dress Quilt.

So, just to warn you guys, this is a sewing post. But there are also pictures, so you can just glaze over the SEWING words and look at the pictures – sure, they’re of quilts, but there’s also a blurry one of Jocelyn wielding a naked barbie doll, so don’t skip!

I’ve been stockpiling the sweet little summer sundresses as she grows out of them with the intention of making a quilt out of them for her some day. I first discussed this here. Now, we’re talking about a myriad of patterns and colors and even fabric weight (though I’m trying to keep it to just wovens, no knits) so when I do make this quilt it will be quite a task to meld it all together.

So, a few items have caught my fancy in the last month or so, and I wanted to make a note of them so that when that Quilt-Making Day DOES arrive, I’ll have some ideas to draw on.

This Denyse Schmidt “Single Girl” quilt looks adorable, but I don’t think it would showcase each fabric enough. I want to be able to look at each fabric and remember my little girl WEARING it.

If I was making the quilt today, I would have to go with a coin quilt. Here’s Hillary’s blogiversary quilt from Wee Wonderfuls that jump-started that idea. The white base color frames each fabric beautifully.

I wonder if I have enough dress fabric for this yet? I think I definitely will once she outgrows this summer’s clothes.

Which will be in about TWO MINUTES!

(All they can talk about every time I drop her off in her new classroom is, “She’s HOW old? Wow, she is TALL. Look how TALL. She looks like she’s FIVE, because she’s SO TALL, TALL, THE TALLNESS, I MUST COMMENT ONCE MORE ON THE TAAAAAALLL.” — I get it. She’s tall. We have spawned a tall amazonian girl-child. Shuddup already.)

I am all itchy to sew something. I sewed a sweet little sundress for Jocelyn which she has not allowed me to take a picture of (here’s one I got where she is RUNNING AWAY IN PROTEST, wielding a naked Barbie doll. “Don’t take my picture! I have a naked Barbie, and I’m NOT AFRAID TO USE IT!)

jocelyn's shirred summer dress

I SHIRRED! It was lovely fun, the shirring! When I finally got it to work! If you don’t know what shirring is, it’s sewing with elastic thread in the bobbin which makes the material get all stretchy and lovely – the top half of that dress = shirred. I got the motivation and know-how for it over at Portabello Pixie (the Shir Madness! Tutorial is down the side of her sidebar).

But that was months ago, and I want to sew something NEW! Something FOR ME!!

Look! It even says it’s FOR ME!!

I bought Alicia Paulson’s Tanglewood Bag pattern the instant she put it up for sale in her shop, but not the fabric kit, and have been hung up on fabric.

For ease of use, I thought, “I don’t HAVE to cut 48 2″ squares… I could just make the pattern with a solid fabric and not do the patchwork thing…” Which, let’s face it, is an EXCELLENT idea because I’m bound to mess something up and messing up on a 48 pieced 2″ squares will definitely make me cry, and so I could make the solid purse kind of my trial run before a “final” version, and also? I still have PLENTY of material left over from the blurry shirred dress up there — but even that sort of lazy talk didn’t motivate me into actually sitting down and doing it. I may pitch in the fickle towel and just MAKE IT ALREADY.

So this bag is my goal for the next week. Sewing. WOOOO!

-amy. lazy, fickle AMY.

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Aug 15 2008

jailbroken iphone

Published by under amy's head,iphone,likes & irks

So yesterday I jailbroke my phone. It was very fun and exciting. And also – amazingly EASY. I heard there was a lot of issues with the first (2.0) jailbreak software, but I used the 2.01 version and had no issues whatsoever.

2 applications are put on the phone when you jailbreak, kind of like alternatives to the app store, the first is called Cydia, and the second Installer. I’m still figuring things out in there, I think my trouble is there’s a lot of applications that work for versions UNDER 2.0, but have not yet been ported to 2.0, so I will go to click on an app that looks interesting and get an error.

I have installed quite a few though, and I am so happy! I will write up my favorite 3rd party applications soon, but need to give it a week or so first. One thing I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE though is that you can completely change the look of your phone. The screen where you see all your icons laid out is called the “Springboard” and there are lost of springboard, summerboard and even winterboard themes that you can install and fiddle around with. Here are a few of the ones I tried:

Here is the original iphone “theme”:

And here are some othersI tried out:

This one is called “Sexy Realize”-



And finally, “Pinkameter” – the one I’m going to stick with until I get sick of pink (it might not last until tomorrow):

And last but not least… QUAKE SCREEN SHOT!

Quake 4 iPhone

Quake 4 iPhone

I haven’t really played it. Need to figure out how to set up some customized controls – using some tilting of the phone itself would be awesome, hope that’s available.

WOOT! Jailbroken baby!

-amy got sprung!

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Aug 02 2008

Everything he touches is turned into a gun

Published by under kids,likes & irks,photos





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Jul 25 2008

Post Seen On Craigslist

Published by under gardening,likes & irks


Makes great compost.

You cut and rake.

(the listing was already removed or I’d link it.)

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