Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Happy 2nd Birthday, Little E!

I can't believe another year has passed. It feels like E has always been a part of our lives but this past year, from 1 to 2, seems to have flown past. I swear it was just yesterday that I was planning her Bunny 1st birthday party. And now here she is 2 already. How did that happen?!? She is talking so much and is just the cutest, sweetest, funniest little girl, much like her big sister :)

The day after her birthday I took her over to the JCP Portrait Studio for her birthday pictures. Last year we didn't go until April (3 months after her birthday) so I wanted to make sure I was on time this year. So, without further adieu, here are her 2nd Year Photos:

I couldn't decide between this one or the one below it for her "2" photo so I ordered them both :)

I thought this background was really cute, especially considering her dress has little foxes on it.

Looking at her daily sometimes it's hard to see the changes from year to year. Obviously from birth to year 1 is a big jump but to me it doesn't look like her looks have changed that much from year 1 to year 2, except that her hair is longer.
Year 1

Year 2

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Indoor Snowball Fight

Happy New Year! I hope you had a joyous Christmas and have a happy and healthy 2014!

This Christmas I wanted to give some handmade gifts to our friends and families that would be fun for the kids and adults alike. I had seen Indoor Snowball Kits in previous years and decided to try making my own version. It was an easy project and each one came together quite quickly. Even though Christmas is over this is certainly a project that can be made anytime of year.

The supplies I used are:
- Lion Brand Wool-Ease Chunky Yarn in Tinsel White (This yarn is the perfect weight and color.)
- Clover Extra Large Pom-Pom Maker (This makes the job SO much easier.)
- Fiskars-Heritage Seamstress Scissors (A good pair of sewing scissors really helps.)
- Chart Toppers of the 80's CD (Ok, this one isn't exactly necessary but it helps to have some fun tunes on when you're crafting.)

To make the pom-pom snowballs, first I measured and cut 7 yard lengths of yarn. Then I used that one piece as a guide to cut several more 7 yard lengths of yarn. Eventually I noticed my later snowballs were seeming skimpier than my earlier ones so I remeasured a piece of yarn and found it was closer to 5 yards. I guess I hadn't been too careful in my cutting :(  I found that for the best snowballs that two 7 yard lengths per side made nice poofy pom-poms. They are soft enough that if you get hit in the face it doesn't hurt and they don't feel too yarn-bare in the hand.

Using the Clover Pom-Pom Maker took a bit of getting used to as there are several moving parts on it but once you've made a bunch, it's really easy and way less time consuming than the traditional way using cardboard templates.

Here's how I did it:
 - Wrap one side of the Clover Pom-Pom Maker with two lengths of 7 yards of yarn. You could always use one 14 yard length of yarn but I was concerned it would lead to too much tangling.

- Wrap the other side of the Pom-Pom Maker with two lengths of 7 yards of yarn. Also, as you can see in this picture I folded my yarn into fourths which made it easier to wrap since it wasn't so long.

- Slip your scissors in the grove of the Pom-Pom Maker and cut the yarn loops into loose pieces.

- Tie a length of yarn in between the grooves, around the entire pom-pom and double knot it tightly.

- Remove your pom-pom from the Pom-Pom Maker and trim off any long pieces of yarn. The more you trim, the denser your pom-pom will become. I left mine longer so the snowballs would be softer.

I ended up making 70 pom-poms (I still have two Indoor Snowball Fight kits to ship.) It was everything I could do to keep the girls from stealing them.

I found these cute plastic buckets with lids at the Dollar Tree store and made the personalized labels.

All in all I think they were a success. My brother, K, and her cousin A definitely had fun with them on Christmas so I count that as a win. :)