Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Dinner (with free printable!)

As the story goes, my mom made up this Halloween Dinner menu when we were little kids.
Apparently she did it on a whim one year before trick-or-treating and, much to her dismay, it stuck.

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween, friends!

I hope you all have a fun, safe night!

From the archives: Happy Halloween Banner Tutorial and Printable

Looking for a fast, fun, easy way to dress up your door for Trick-or-Treaters tonight?

Make your own "Happy Halloween" banner with my free printable in minutes!

Click here to go to the original post from last year.

Happy Halloween!
Heads up!  Multiple Halloween posts today!  Be sure to check out the 4 Fun Halloween Preschool Activities.

4 Fun Halloween Preschool Activities

1. Counting Candy


  • Grab an empty ice cube tray.
  • Put candy in a bowl.
  • Let your kids put one candy in each hole.
  • Count the candy!

This activity was a definitely preschool success.  Hooray!  The kids (both two years old) are at a point developmentally where they love sorting the candies into little compartments.  We've already done this activity with marbles and other manipulatives and the kids have liked it, but the candy was a definite hit.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Opportunities to Do Good

The good you do is good.
The good you do is meaningful.
Keep on doing it.

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Pumpkin Patch

Oh the irony of posting about the pumpkin patch right after I said I hadn't thought about Halloween at all.  Oh well.

The weather has been turning colder and more crisp.

In progress -- 90 Min Shirt --Made from an old favorite Halloween shirt of mine

Time for some new long sleeve shirts.

And a trip to the pumpkin patch

My good friend and her little girl invited Olivia and me to go to the pumpkin patch with them and we were delighted to go along.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Christmas Cards

I have a confession to make guys.  I do not have Halloween on the brain.

I have thought about costumes for a total of maybe 10 minutes.  Olivia's costume was purchased for $3 from the thrift store.  Last month.  Done and done.

And the thought to pull out the fall and Halloween decorations literally didn't even cross my mind until a couple days ago when I went rummaging for decorations for a different holiday.


Christmas is on the brain, my friends.

Maybe that's because it's a holiday that actually has meaning and all that good stuff.
Maybe it's because Christmas means lots of time with family.

Or it could be that Christmas is just a holiday that just takes a lot more preparation!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

October 2011 Brown Bag: THE Brown Bags --the contents, a mini tutorial, and a printable

I've told you all about the October 2011 Brown Bag night.  We talked about the decorations and set up, the people, the food, the prizes, and even how to make the Simple Bows.  

But we haven't talked about THE actual Brown Bags.  
So let's hit it!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Have you checked out From The Red Kitchen on Facebook lately?

Because you might want to.

*hint! hint!*

Click the "Like" button while you're there and stay connected to all things Red Kitchen.

Leave a funny comment on the most recent post there and there might be something sweet in it for you.  :)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Simple Bows -- A Tutorial in 12 Easy Steps

For our Brown Bag night, each guest was instructed to bring a fat quarter of quilting weight cotton (i.e. regular fabric).

After the demo, each guest made two Simple Bows.

One went home with them.  Then they clipped the remaining bow onto a Brown Bag for someone else to take home!

In other words, everyone went home with two bows; one they made themselves, and one somebody else made.  Fun, no?

A number of you have expressed how much you wish you could have come to the October 2011 Brown Bag night.  I wish you could all come too!  But because my house is too small to hold all of us and because so many of you live far away from me, I thought I'd let you in on the action with a little tutorial on how to make your own Simple Bows.

If you really want to have fun, make two and give one to a friend.  :)

Ready?  Let's start!

October 2011 Brown Bag: The Prizes

Photo used with permission from Belle Photography

The contents of the October 2011 Brown Bag prize basket came from the following wonderful sponsors:

  • Simple Bows made by me

Each of these prizes were wonderful!  Except for the photo shoot (which we did a separate drawing for), winners got to pick their prize and it was fun to see what people chose.

A HUGE thanks to the October 2011 Brown Bag sponsors!  

The prizes they donated made Brown Bag so fun.  Because nothing beats the thrill of having your name called out because you just won something cool.

See anything in there you wouldn't mind finding under the Christmas tree?

P.S. Enter the code "BROWNBAG" at checkout and receive a 15% discount on your purchase at Each Peach Boutique!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Ohio and My Testimony

I grew up in Oregon.  Rainy, wonderful Oregon.  Most people think of it as wet.  I think of it as green.  But, having grown up there, I really think of it it more in terms of the people I know there.

Some of my family is still in Oregon.  And some of my best friends in the whole world.  Also, I think there is some version of me that lingers there.

I've been thinking about my Oregonian self more and more since we moved to Ohio.  My mind wanders to who I was in high school and it baffles me sometimes.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

October 2011 Brown Bag: The Food

Each Brown Bag guest was invited to bring a plate of snacks or desserts to share.  

*photo taken by me

Votes were cast for the best.
Prizes were awarded to the 1st and 2nd place winners in each category (snacks and desserts).
And one prize was given to the plate of snacks or desserts that I felt best fit the theme.

Note: All photos (unless otherwise noted) are used with permission courtesy of Belle Photography.  Thank you so much for taking all these wonderful pictures, Noelle!

As you can see, there were a lot of yummy things to choose from.

Friday, October 21, 2011

October 2011 Brown Bag: The People!

The October Brown Bag RSVP list had 31 people on it.
I think we ended up with about 25 people.
Which is a lot.

It was crazy and fun planning for so many people.
And so worth every minute of work that went into it.

Getting to meet and hang out with all these fun ladies is what made the October 2011 Brown Bag so much fun!

Note: All photos are used with permission courtesy of Belle Photography.  Thank you so much for taking all of these wonderful pictures, Noelle!

Laura (and her cute pregnant belly) and Kelsey listen to Lacey tell us about a quilt she brought to show off.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

October 2011 Brown Bag: The Set Up

Let the Brown Bag posts (finally) begin!  

After some debate in my head, I decided that updating you all on how the October Brown Bag (the very first one ever) went will be better in small doses.  And I thought I'd go ahead and start with all the fun bits about set up and decorations.  Let's begin!

Note: All photos (unless otherwise noted) are used with permission courtesy of Belle Photography.  Thank you so much for taking all these wonderful pictures, Noelle!

Ye olde Crib Chalkboard Easel finally got to come out of its hiding place in the basement.  :)
This fun, cheery sign greeted all of the guests as they came in.
Hopefully my really nice neighbors didn't mind having their door blocked off for the night.

Also, please note my really excellent drawing of a bow.
Contrary to popular (Olivia's) belief, it is not a butterfly.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

25 Free Christmas Cards for Bloggers

Ordinarily I don't post coupon codes and deals and that sort of thing on my blog.  Unless it's for my sweet-o sponsors or something.  But I thought I'd make an exception for this.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A little bit of funny

Some of you with really keen minds may have noticed that I haven't posted for like an entire week.  Oh, I mean exactly a week.  Which is weird for me.  Part of that is because we skipped town this weekend to visit family.  And part of that is because I was wiped out from Brown Bag.

The first Brown Bag night was last Tuesday and it went so well.  I really can't even tell you guys how happy I am about that.

Oh wait!  I can tell you guys!  But first I have to sort through a gazillion pictures and all that good stuff.

So, since that could take me some time (and probably multiple posts), I thought another one of my favorite Kid History episodes might hold you over while I work on the Brown Bag posts.

A little more funny, anyone?

I haven't watched all of the episodes yet.  What are your favorites?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Brown Bag (tonight!)

About a month ago I couldn't sleep.  I laid in bed for hours, just thinking.  And this is what I was thinking about.

Brown Bag
        A monthly night of creative fun for free!

Now, a month later, my little dream is about to come to fruition.  Tonight, somewhere around 30 ladies will pile into their cars and head over here.

Monday, October 10, 2011

2 year-old + runny nose =

Me: Olivia, did you know that it's past midnight?
Olivia: Uh-huh.

I put her back down to sleep at least 5 times.  Each time seemed so promising and then... not so much.

So I finally surrendered and brought her downstairs with me since that was all that she wanted.

Now she's happily playing with her doctor toys (oh the irony) and checking my temperature (with the toy thermometer) every two seconds.

It is waaaaaaay past her bed time.

...Mine too.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

I know it's green, but what else is about it?

My BFF posted this video on her blog a couple weeks ago and I keep thinking about it and laughing.

When I went back to watch it again tonight I thought I'd better just share it here with all of you.

So, while it has nothing to do with crafting and sewing, I still think you will all like it.  Especially if you are a mom.  Or if you have a mom.  Or if you know one.

P.S. I keep doing that sing-songy voice (without thinking) with Olivia lately and every time I do I picture myself as the mom in this video.  First I have a little giggle fit.  Then I just hope I don't look like this man mom.  ...I don't, right?

Friday, October 7, 2011

Getting Dressed: Week 2

This week's outfit was submitted by Lauren of The Little Things We Do.

No, I don't have to pee.  I'm just terrible at posing.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

A Little Late Night Sewing

Last night my good friend Alice came over for a little late night sewing.  The order of the day?  Bows.  Simple Bows, to be exact.  I'll share the tutorial soon.

For about the past month I've been planning a little (big?) craft night for all of my local friends.  Lots of ladies.  Lots of sweets.  And--for this month--lots of Simple Bows.

Alice has been a gem and helped me plan things.

Alice: Where are you going to put the desserts?
Me: I don't know.  Maybe we could put some on the piano.
Alice: Ok.  Where are you going to put the goodie bags?
Me: I don't know.  Maybe on the piano.
Alice: Maybe we should think this through...

Let's just say that--were it not for her keen mind--everything would be on the piano and I still would not have fully thought through how many sewing machines we'll need.  You know, minor details.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

You know what's hard?

Taking a decent picture of yourself.  
Especially when you're all dressed up in a real outfit.


It seems I've got to enlist some help.

Local photographers, anyone?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Wanted: Stylists

After my sad attempt at Getting Dressed last week, my good friend Lauren (who talked me into this business in the first place) sent me a kind e-mail saying that I had done a good job... and that I should take pictures of some of my clothes so she could tell me how to wear them properly.  Haha.

With the hope of leaving no piece of lame clothing stone unturned, I instead photographed every single piece of clothing I own (minus pajamas and the like) and all of my accessories and posted them all in my new Flickr group.  You can see the motley crew here:

Now you can all browse through it and help me piece together cool outfits.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Learning Colors with Fruit Loops

This week here in our little at-home preschool we're focusing on COLORS.  Wheee!  So fun!  

Okay, truth be told, I'm actually not that psyched about it.  Haha.  But the kids are!  (And that's what's important, right?  Right.)  

So today after we turned over the day on our calendar and talked about the weather and reviewed our colors together, (and sang some songs and other random little things), the kids made these fun little necklaces.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Freshly Organized

Getting the ol' blog to look and feel and be organized exactly the way I want is a forever work in progress.  A huge part of that is because what I want it to be changes as I learn new skills and as my preferences develop.  So I doubt I'll ever really feel 100% done when it comes to moving things around and getting things organized.

That being said, I'm happy to let you all know that I've been busy reworking some of the things that have been bugging me and adding a few things I've been meaning to add for a loooong time.

So let's take a quick look at what's new around here!


Click on the images below to visit the homepage for each series.

Some General Information

The project that was in my lap last year

Today and tomorrow you'll find me hunkered down with some little craft project in my lap.
With Bryan and Olivia.
Watching one of my favorite shows.

It comes on twice a year.  It's uplifting and heartwarming.  Humbling and funny.  And, most importantly, I always come away from it with a better sense of who I am, where I come from, and what I can do to be a better me.