Monday, 30 September 2013

Chandelier Redo - With Burlap! No. 2

Remember a couple of months ago when I redid an old lampshade with burlap for our livingroom/diningroom?

Well... there was still one red light that needed to be replaced if we were going to have any luck with eating in that room come winter. When it got dark around dinnertime last year, that room was impossible to eat in. It was way too dark with our red lights and our red walls (although it was super cool on Halloween night!)

I finished the second chandelier last month.  Check it out:

Looking sharp! :D

Once again I took a thrifted lampshade, a burlap rice sack and some vintage lace and went to work.  These are so easy to make and they turn out so beautiful.

Here is it all lit up. You may have remembered that the original burlap lampshade that I made was in this position in our livingroom. But it was causing a halo right over Terry's head when he ate. It was almost interrogation lampish. Yikes.

So I moved it across the room where it could halo the air just fine and moved this one over Terry's spot at the dinner table.

They look so good in this room!

I love them so much and they were so easy to make (and super cheap too! Under $10 per chandelier)

 What do you think?

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Iron Crafty #19: Monsters and Witches and Ghosts Oh My!

This week's challenge:

"Halloween is just over a month off and I am itching to get started on decorating. Ideas are popping up all over Pinterest and the dollar store is full of good cheap supplies. So, that is our theme this challenge, make something for Halloween. (To all you crafty moms this is a chance to get those costumes done early!)"


Well I haven't quite got the umph together to finish costumes. I'm scared that Lane will change her mind at the last minute and I'll have a super elaborate, expensive fairy costume that will only fit her this year, but that she doesn't want to wear because she wants to be a cheerleader or something....

So I went with something to keep my fingers busy while I watch all the new shows that are coming out now. I always feel so lazy if I'm not doing something while sitting in front of the TV.

Here is what I came up with:

Everyone meet Paulo and Stella. They are conjoined twin zombies that share the same braaaaiiiiinnnnn.....

I actually got the template from a book called Hoopla: The Art of Unexpected Embroidery.

I got it from my sister and brother in law last year for Christmas. I'm glad I finally got a chance to try something from it.

Aren't they fabulously creepy?

I even lined the bag with scary fabric. This was one of those pieces of fabric that gets shoved into a bag with really cool Christmas fabric at the thrift store. You know, the extra ugly stuff they want to get rid of?

Paolo and Stella "might" be up for grabs as the door prize at the WEST sale that I am a vendor at in October. I say "might" because I'm really attached to this bag right now. I have no idea why, but I love it so much. I want to use it as my library book bag.

Don't know why this photo is sideways on here, but it still shows some of the stitchery.

 According to the designer of Paolo and Stella, they are fighting over what to have for dinner.  There is an entire backstory in the book.

I made them into zombie twins for the challenge because they are super creepy. I think it fits. :)


To see all the other super creeper Halloween inventions from Iron Craft, please check out the Flickr Group.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Corn and Applefest 2013

In more news of stuff we did this past summer and never got around to blogging about: Morden's Corn and Apple Fest

It was our first trip out to Morden for this festival. And it was super fun!

It seems that anything with corn is a hit with the kids.


On the way out to Morden, we checked out all the wind turbines beside the highway. That was pretty cool.

And even the rain didn't stop us from having fun. We were in line to go on the Ferris Wheel when it started raining. Then it started thundering. Since I'm a huge lightening rod with these chunks of metal wiring and pacemaker in me, we decided it might not be a good idea to be stuck at the top of the Ferris Wheel when the lightening was getting closer.  So we hightailed it back to the car to wait it out.

Even that was kind of fun. Watching the rain and steaming up the car windows in a strange town that we'd never explored before.

A gratuitous photo of me hehehe. I was the photographer for most of our family outings, so sometimes I turned the phone on myself for a quick reminder that I was actually at some of these fun activities as well.

After the storm passed we got a chance to ride the dreaded Ferris Wheel.  We all looked a little terrified being stuck at the top.

And of course there was more food.  Lane had to have a hotdog. The rest of us went to bison burgers and curled chips. We picked up a bag of Kettle Corn for the ride home and tried out some amazing apple/minidonut mash up things for dessert. Oh my gosh - highly recommended! 

It was a fantastic day. We will definitely be going back for the festival next year.

And there was a pretty rainbow on our way home which topped off the day just right (even though we got detoured onto an unfamiliar dirt road for a long time before we figured out how to get back onto the highway - why the police we detouring cars in the first place remains a mystery).

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Front Step Make Over

I may now add "masonry" to my list of skillz.

I should even go on LinkedIn and do that right now.

Because last month I rebuilt our front step - Like a Boss!

That's right. I bought all the supplies, squared out the step with boards and mixed and poured cement.

See? Don't I look pro? I took that hammer and chisel and wore those safety glasses to destroy (er.. I mean chisel) a groove into the steps where I wanted to pour the new cement).

Not that I could do much more damage than was already there. This is the before photo. Yikes! Halloween was just a law suit waiting to happen last year. I cringed every time a little kid with awkward shoes came traipsing up that death trap.

I read a Time Life book on Masonry just in case you thought I was going into this blind. It showed me how to make the groove and mix up something called cement glue which helped the old stuff bind to the new stuff.

This is an odd photo, but it shows that I made a neat little corner on the top step where the whole thing was crumbling.

Ta da! Top step finished. I even got the tool that finishes the edges all nice with a curve so that it isn't sharp when walking up. Thanks to that Time Life book for that little suggestion.

 So... remember the before? Here is Logan on the first day of school last year. Standing on that scary crumbly step.

And now! Laney standing on the newly rebuilt step on her first day of school this year.

Not perfect, but so much better than I could have hoped.

I'll let you in on a little secret:

I talked a good game about knowing my stuff and being able to do this task. I convinced Terry that I could do it by looking in a book and doing a little research. Mostly he agreed because it was going to cost hundreds of dollars to have someone look at it and then fix it. This repair only cost about $100. I mouthed off to everyone that would listen that I knew what I was doing. But truth be told I was totally terrified of actually doing it.

I was scared that I wouldn't get the cement mixture right. I was scared that the cement would cave in a leave a terrible sunken disaster of epic proportions on our front step. I was scared that it would be uneven and dangerous to walk on, especially for the kids. I was scared that I would have to give up, admit defeat and we'd have to pay even more to someone to fix the mess that I had made. I was scared the entire project would end like this:

But none of that fear ever came to fruition. It turned out beautifully. Only I will not talk myself up so much in the future when attempting something knew. That was just cray cray.

Monday, 16 September 2013

Logan's 1st Lost Tooth

In more news that happened over the summer but I haven't had time to share:

Logan lost his first baby tooth!

We were at the mall eating a quick dinner before going to a movie one evening. (In actual fact, we were hiding from our hot house in the awesome air conditioning for the evening).

When out popped Logan's tooth! (In actual fact, it didn't pop so much as fall out with a mouthful of blood). Yech... it really looked like my poor baby got punched in the mouth. But it had been loose for a long time and the adult tooth was already grown in right behind it, so we knew it was coming.

Logan got a chance to use his Tooth Fairy Pillow that I made for him in anticipation of this big moment:

It's certainly bright and colourful enough to attract the best sort of tooth fairy.

And it has his name on it just in case the tooth fairy forgets.

On the back is a large pocket for tooth fairy treasures and a small pocket in which to place the tooth.

And of course it features Logan's favourite trim - pom pom trim!

The tooth fairy came and left him a sweet note about losing his first tooth, a receipt for the tooth, $2 and a little bit of fairy dust.

I wonder what the tooth fairy will come up with for the second tooth which is on the verge of coming out any day now?

Thursday, 12 September 2013


More about what kept me away from the blog all summer. This family adventure was a little later in our summer of fun. We went to the corn maze on Labour Day.

There was a petting zoo.


More bunnies!

I was fascinated by the bird bath.

The kids were all about the bunnies!

More bird bath.

They were having so much fun in the bird bath. I couldn't stop taking pictures of them.


The kids were being so gentle with the animals. Lane has a natural affinity with animals. It's really amazing to watch.


More goat. This goat really liked my neon shoe laces. I almost didn't escape with them intact.

This was my favourite goat.

We went on a sleigh ride.

It wasn't too busy, so we got the entire sleigh to ourselves.

The cowboy in charge of the horses was so kind and said that we needed a family photo. He was right!

We were champions on top of the bales of hay.

Lane wasn't sure about the climbing, but soon got right into it.

Logan had a great time running around and climbing.

And jumping off the ledges.

His legs got a little cut up by the straw, but he's willing to go back later on in Autumn (provided he wears pants of course!)

Daddy got into the action as well.

Funny how we went to the corn maze and there aren't any pictures of the actual corn maze, which we wandered around in and played the search game for about an hour. Hmmm... too into the game perhaps?

Anyway... stay tuned for Corn and Applefest, some steps repair and whatever else I can think of that I haven't blogged from the summer.