Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Housewares Month Finale: Logan's Bench

Earlier this year I got the grand idea in my head to remake a bench for Logan's room. Actually it came out of necessity. Logan believes that he is a very big boy (and he is), and insists on opening his curtains every morning. He climbs up on this footstool that we had put in his room when we moved in. This poor stool is not very stable - in fact it moves every time Logan gets up there and leans against the wall. There have been several times when Logan has hit the floor because the stool moves out from under him.

Thankfully, we had a sturdy bench that our friend Rejean kindly donated to me when I moved into my first apartment. It's a little worse for wear, but it doesn't move when toddlers climb on it. The "before" is pictured below.

Yeah, not much to look at. So I sanded it down a little. Then I glued some nice felt pieces onto the bottom so it wouldn't scratch the floor when moved by a rambunctious toddler.

Then I cut a million little pieces of colourful fabric and Mod Podged the whole bench. I actually haven't quite finished this part yet. But it's getting there!

I also ordered some fabulous vinyl fabric from Taiwan for the cushion. I chose vinyl so that it would be easily washable after a toddler uses it for a PB&J party or whatever else he gets into his head to do with it. The bears and trains and balloons on the fabric are all wonderful and perfect for children's decor.

I've still gotta finish the final touches on the Mod Podging and then put a finishing coat of something on it. It's pretty fabulous! Perfect for Logan's room! And perfect for the grand finale of Housewares Month! :)

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Logan's Best Friend

For weeks, Logan has been very excited about Grandma coming to visit. He told me everyday: "Grandma is my best friend." Awwwww, that's just so cute!

So when the day finally arrived this weekend, Logan had plenty of activities planned for Grandma. Especially because it was a warm spring-ish weekend. They spent the entire afternoon outside raking leaves, riding bikes, bubble mowing the lawn and playing running games. I bet Grandma was exhausted after all that toddler fun, but she didn't show it. She was having as much fun with Logan and he was with her.

They are quite the pair. Logan wants to play Guitar Hero and Grandma tries. After the first song Grandma says that she does NOT like playing this game and that it is one of those things she won't do again. But in the same breath, Logan looks up at her and asks, "Grandma, play another song with Logan?" And she crumbles and plays another song. Awwww.... me thinks that boy has her wrapped around his little finger.

Grandma and Logan got lots of time together. On Saturday afternoon, they played some video games. On Sunday we went out for breakfast and played all day in the leaves. On Monday we all went to Stars and Strollers to see How To Train Your Dragon. Grandma got potty duty for that one. Then we came home and played some more. On Monday evening Grandma was babysitter while Terry and I got to go out together for the first time without the kids since October (or maybe September?) Logan took advantage and stayed up until 11:00!!! He had tons of stuff to do with Grandma before she left for Thompson in the morning.

Look at those two - best friends!

Sunday, 28 March 2010

Scrappy Braided Rug Finale! And A Winner!

It's FINALLY FINISHED!!!! Yes - I finished the braided rope rug that I started so innocently in October. I even made a tutorial about it back then. Remember?

Isn't it beautiful?

Logan and Laney really like it too! :)

In case you were wondering, I finished the edge by cutting strips of knit fabric (I cut up old baby pajamas actually) and double knotted them all the way around the edge. It looks really awesome.

Here it is in the nursery. Awwww... what a great project to finish during Housewares Month.

Note: I have set up a Tawny Bee How To Flickr Group. If you try this out, I would love to see your version! Feel free to join and link up some of your great creations using one of my tutorials. :)


And let's not forget about the Le Crueset Housewares Month Giveaway that I was doing last week. I chose a winner! It's homemom3. She has been notified and I will be sending her oven mitts out to her shortly. I will also have CSN stores ship her brand new casserole dish to her ASAP. Yay!

The giveaway turned out great. I had a lot of fun and had lots of interest in it. So if I ever get the chance to have another sponsored giveaway I might be willing to do it. I guess we'll see if something like that comes up again.

Thanks to everyone who entered!

Friday, 26 March 2010

How To : Dry Erase Menu Planner

As part of our self-improvement regimen, Terry and I have decided to be more vigilant with our menu planning. That way we will not feel like going out to eat as much as we go. Or at least that's the idea. We tried writing the menu on a piece of paper and tacking it to the fridge. That worked fine, but it just wasn't pretty. So... I needed to fix that - pronto!

Follow along with me as I make a pretty dry erase menu planner.

Supplies needed:
-A dry erase board with frame and pen (I got mine at the dollar store for $1.50)
- scrap fabric
- computer with printer and paper
- hot glue and glue gun
- scissors
- Mod Podge and applicator
- decorative stuff (ribbon, beads, etc)

1) Go to your computer and find a cool picture and make the "Menu" title and the days of the week. Print it out. I looked up "free menu clipart" on Google images and found my little menu icon. Then I used 60 pt Apple Chancery font for the "Menu" and 36 pt Apple Chancery font for the days of the week.

2) Cut out the various pieces. Cut close to the wording because you want most of the dry erase board to be used for menu planning. Arrange them on your dry erase board the way you want them. I left more room for the weekend because those are the days that we always make something good.

3) Get out the Mod Podge and carefully apply it to all the days, the menu title and the menu icon. Try not to make it go much past the paper because again we want most of the dry erase board to be usable for menu planning.

Note: Terry likes this project for a couple of reasons. One of them being the use of Mod Podge. He thinks it's a funny name and therefore a cool material to work with.

4) Cut out some scrap fabric and cover your dry erase frame. I didn't want to get the fabric into the inside of the frame because the board wouldn't fit back together, so it was tricky to glue into place. It probably took me a good 45 minutes to carefully glue the fabric to the frame. And then it didn't go on very nicely. But don't worry, we'll cover up our boo boos later!

5) Make a long strand of fabric for a hook. Or you could use the one attached to the frame if you like. I didn't want to use the attached one because I wasn't going to nail this to the wall. I needed a nice fabric hook in order to pin it to our large bulletin board that we have in the kitchen.

6) Glue the hook onto the top and decorate with lace, beads, flowers, whatever you like.
I used the beads to cover up some of the mistakes I made heheehe

7) Hang it up!

I apologize for the art school craft project look of my menu planner, but I really like it. And Terry says that the lace around the edges makes it look "sexy" whatever that's supposed to mean?

It's a nice addition to my kitchen! :)

Note: I have set up a Tawny Bee How To Flickr Group. If you try this out, I would love to see your version! Feel free to join and link up some of your great creations using one of my tutorials. :)

Thursday, 25 March 2010

How To: Bamboo Knife Holder

I'm editing this post on May 14th, 2011 in order to enter it into Crystal's Craft Spot Challenge. The theme is wood, and I think bamboo skewers count as wood? Anyway, I think this craft is pretty awesome and cheap and she says we can enter oldies but goodies, so there ya go!

I've been browsing some of the kitchen stuff at the Home Expressions Show and also online for the past couple of weeks. There are tons of ideas for our house. We haven't gotten around to decorating fully (who ever says they are done decorating anyway?) One thing I noticed were these trendy knife holders for the kitchen.

A painted box with bamboo inside to hold the knives. And these things sell for $50.00 (small) and $89.00 (large)!! Ouch! I'm going to show you how to make a similar product that will cost you under $10.

You'll want to head to your local Dollar Store for all the supplies.

Supplies needed:
- bamboo skewers (I needed 5 packages of 100 to fill my vase) = $5.00
- A jar of coloured sand = $1.50 (you can also use rice or sugar if you want to save even more money)
- A vase. Make sure it's not curved - it should be straight up and down = $2.00 (you can also use a 2 litre plastic bottle with the top cut off or a tall decorative tin or juice container)
- A scrap of fabric
- anything you want to decorate the vase with (ribbon, button, beads, etc.)
- Hot glue and a glue gun

1) Measure around your container. Cut a rectangle of fabric that is the measurement plus one inch and however much of height you want on the decorative band plus one inch.

*** Yes, I'm using the Man Fabric again. I didn't ask Terry which fabric he wanted for this particular project, but I knew he would say the Man Fabric. I wasn't going to use this fabric, but when I took a look at our kitchen I realized it was the only fabric that matched. We have brown countertops and forest green painted cupboards and blinds. Not my favourite choice of colour scheme, but it'll do until we get enough money to redo the kitchen the way we like. ***

2) Use hot glue to make a "hem" on the bottom and one side of the band.

3) Glue the rectangle band of fabric to the container top. Make sure the "hemmed" side of the band goes over top of the unfinished side. And have a little bit of the band hanging over the top.

4) Fold the leftover fabric from the top over into the container and glue it down. It doesn't have to be pretty on the inside, so use as much glue as you need, no one will see it anyway.

5) Decorate your container however you like. I added a band of wide ribbon into mine.

6) Pour some sand, sugar, rice of beans into the bottom of the container. At least a cup of material should be enough.

7) Fill the container with as many bamboo skewers as you can possibly fit inside it. This container took 500!

And voila! For a grand total of $8.50, I've got my own personalized, matching, "designer" bamboo knife holder.

Doesn't it look great in my kitchen?

Frugal Home Designs

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Bunny Pillows and Man Curtains

IF you're looking for the Le Crueset Casserole Dish giveaway, click here.

I've been a busy bee this week, working on all the wonderful treats I'm going to include with Logan's and Lane's Easter baskets. Last night after they went to sleep and tonight while they were out with Terry doing the grocery shopping, I worked on bunny pillows.

I got the basic tutorial from a blog called Wolf and Willow. I didn't bother making pillowcases, because the kids would just end up pulling them off or getting them tangled up (especially Laney). So I appliqued the bunny directly on the pillows which I made myself out of some quilted double sided fabric that I had kicking around.

The black pillow with the purple bunny is for Logan and the red pillow is for Laney. Although you can probably tell that by the different sizes.

And I forgot that I'd written that I would post the downstairs bathroom curtains when I got them done. They are a version of the Simple Basement Curtains that I made for Housewares Month a few weeks ago.

I made these to open in the middle instead of having a single curtain all the way across as in the tutorial I made previously. They turned out nice. I made them out of fabric with a nature theme. We have dubbed it the Man Fabric since it's so woodsy.

Every time I ask Terry what I should make any project out of now, he says, "The Man Fabric." hehehe

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Logan's Easter Basket: Walking Bunny Finger Puppet

If you're looking for the Le Crueset giveaway scroll down or click here. If not, continue reading about some of the fun stuff the Easter Bunny is preparing for Logan's Easter basket.

Last night while Terry was doing homework for a course he is taking at work, I worked on a cute little finger puppet for Logan's Easter basket. We are trying to curb the boy's addiction to all things sugared, so I've been working on some other treats for Easter morning.

I used a tutorial from Wee Folk Art that can be found here. It was super simple and I got to do an embroidery stitch that I'd never tried before - a woven spider wheel for the eyes. It turned out really awesome!

Logan is going to love his new little walking puppet. I can't wait to see him play with it on Easter morning.

I'm thinking that I might have to make a few friends for this little guy so that mommy, daddy and grandma can play as well :)

Monday, 22 March 2010

Housewares Month Giveaway! (Le Creuset Casserole Dish) CLOSED


Housewares month only has one more week! Eeeep! There are so many things that I'd like to accomplish for our house. I just don't think I'm going to get it all done. And to tell you the truth, there are just some things that I can't sew.

Kids like brand name kind of stuff to decorate their rooms occasionally. I've come to realize that homemade just can't beat Pixar's Cars or Monsters Inc. when it comes to decorating. And there isn't a way (yet) that I can manufacture kitchen utensils or outdoor stuff with my sewing machine.

Thankfully, I can buy that stuff online - because if you know me, I hate shopping at the mall. CSN Stores is an online network of stores that can totally help me find kids bedding, cookware and even outdoor lighting.

And they are awesome enough to sponsor my Housewares month giveaway! Yay!

Would you like a chance to win this cute Le Crueset Casserole Dish?

I love it. I can think of so many things I want to bake in it. Think of all the different versions of spinach dip I could try out, because I'm still searching for that perfect recipe for spinach dip. Anyway, it's not going to be mine, it'll be going to a nice reader's home.

There are a couple of things that you can do to enter:

First, leave a comment on this blog posting. You can give me your fave spinach dip recipe, or tell me what you'd make in this casserole dish. Or just say hi - I'm not picky. That will count as one entry.

Second, you could tweet about this giveaway if you have a Twitter account. So that I can make sure I count your entry, please tweet the following:

Head on over to the "LT Experience" for your chance to win a casserole Dish from Le Creuset: @tawnykw #giveaway

This will give you another entry. Only one tweet per person will be counted.

Third, you can become a follower of this blog or of my fanpage. Come back here and tell me in a separate comment for another entry. Already a follower or a fan? Let me know in a comment for another entry.

Unfortunately, this casserole dish giveaway is only open to people in Canada or the US (CSN stores are doing the shipping). But never fear international readers! As an additional prize, I will be including a set of pot holders, or dish towels, or oven mitts (to use with the casserole dish). And these I will ship internationally, so I encourage you to enter. Here are some of the pot holders I've been working on this weekend. I'll post the oven mitts and dish towels as soon as I get them done.

I will be choosing the winner with a random number generator on Friday March 26th, 2010. If the first winner happens to be international, I will award the Tawny Bee prize to them and draw another number to win the casserole dish. If the winner is from the US or Canada, then I will award both the Tawny Bee prize and the Le Creuset prize to them. I hope that makes sense. Please make sure I have some way to reach you (email) linked to your comments. If I can't reach the winner within 24 hours, I will choose another number.

Ready? And go!

Sunday, 21 March 2010

The Home Expressions Show

We went, we saw and we yearned...

Yes, this is the very first Home Expressions show that Team LT has gone to as homeowners. So exciting!

There were plenty of landscaping, bedroom and kitchen ideas to be had. Of course, we just looked and kept things in mind. There was a lot of pressure from various sales people to commit now, but we were cool and noncommittal. After all, we have no idea what we're going to do with our house. We know some things we'd like to do, but we have no set plans on what will get accomplished this summer. We have a wedding to think about first!

Here Logan and daddy take a break after checking out some cool outdoor BBQs and picnic tables. Actually there was a solid metal framed, family sized picnic table, handcrafted in Canada (Whiteshell) that was awesome. We picked up a brochure for that.

Here is Logan checking out the Jacuzzis. Yeah, we're not getting one of those. What's the point in Winnipeg anyway? We don't have enough room to build a place for it indoors and it's winter most of the year and therefore so fun to have outdoors. But they were fun to look at.

Here we are checking out some brochures and taking a juice break. Logan's favourite part of the Home Show? The lemonade that we bought when we were done!

I entered a bunch of draws - for a bedroom suite, a BBQ, a firepit, a pool table, a jacuzzi, and a 7 piece patio set. Wish me luck in the drawings later today :)

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Little Stinker

The Laney girl has learned this today. Walking is not far behind!

We're in trouble...

A Mommy's Job is Never Done

My various "jobs" today:

Janitor: Laney spit up in the hallway, the dust was piling up on the railings, and the breakfast and lunch tables had to be cleaned up.
Average wage in Canada per hour: $10

Cook: First up, breakfast, relatively painless - cereal for both kids. Then came lunch. Logan did not want leftovers, and refused to eat anything except nachos. Dinner prep because we have a meeting at 4:00 and won't have much time for dinner.
Average wage in Canada per hour: $15

Laundress: The clothes don't clean themselves as much as I'd like them to. This includes gathering the wash, washing the wash, dryer the wash, ironing the wash and putting away the wash.
Average wage in Canada per hour: $10

Conflict Management: The kids won't stop picking at each other today. Logan kicked Laney. Laney took all of Logan's toys and tried to slobber and chew on them. They are too young to already be arguing. They just scream at each other all day!
Average Wage in Canada per hour: $29

Child Psychologist: Why won't Logan go to the potty now? What can I do to ease him into toilet training again? Would a pacifier stop Laney from chewing everything in sight? Will there be problems with it later on? A few of the questions I've been wrestling with today.
Average wage in Canada per hour: $30

Early Childhood Educator: Busy teaching Logan how to put on his socks all by himself. Teaching Laney to stop chewing on cords. Still working on the yesterday, today, and tomorrow discussion from an earlier blog. There is always something to learn!
Average wage in Canada per hour: $16

Dietician: "No Logan you can't eat Starburst for breakfast - that is junk food and we can't eat junk food all the time."
Average wage in Canada per hour: $24

Book Keeper: When does the mortgage come out again? When are we getting our tax cheque? Can I afford to buy a new serger at this point in the year?
Average wage in Canada per hour: $17

Journalist: Gotta write everything in the blog to keep family and friends up to date with all that's going on with Team LT
Average wage in Canada per hour: $22

If a stay-at-home mommy were paid for her work, I'd be a freakin' millionaire by now!

As you might have guessed, I'm having one of those days when I want to be anything but a stay at home mommy. The kids have reduced me to tears today and I just want a break.

And right on cue Laney is starting up with her teething screaming! Gotta go. *grump*

(All wage statistics are from this helpful website)

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

A Basketful of Easter Treats

A basketful of Easter treats courtesy of some very crafty blogs.

Here are the things the Easter Bunny is putting in Logan and Lane's baskets.

You can't have Easter without some sort of sweet treats. Homemade Gummy Candy! (Courtesy of Skip to My Lou)

Who says Easter has to be all about baby chicks and bunnies? I think Laney needs a giraffe doll instead. (Courtesy of Women's Day)

Ok so Easter has to have a few chicks and bunnies. Aren't these little spring chickens adorable? (Courtesy of Small Fry and Co.)

Gotta have Easter tags for all the cute homemade gifties the kids are going to get! These printable Easter tags are precious. (Courtesy of ModEco Kids)

Because it's Housewares Month at Tawny Bee, gotta have some cute Easter pillows. Candy Cottontail Bunny pillows are perfect! (Courtesy of Wolf and Willow)

I better get to work! The Easter Bunny is going to be really busy for the next few weeks on these projects!

What are your fave Easter projects? Got any links to share? Or any stories to tell about Easters of yesteryear?