Thursday, September 09, 2010

small projects

I was looking on the other day for Christmas gift ideas for the girls.  I was browsing through their educational and learning toys and spotted some shape bean bags for $20 and thought that was such a crazy price.  Especially since I have a lot of fabric laying right behind me and some scissors and know how to cut out various shapes.  A trip to the store for $1.50 bag of beans and we are set.

This is what was came of it.

The girls really like them.  I bought some buckets and thought we could make a game out of it.  Some of the shapes were super simple to make and I think I will make some more for them.  

I also converted this little hallway in the front of our house into a little area for the girls to play in.  Bella is always messing around in it.  It used to house Jorge's bike, some tools and other misc. items.

It has been a hit.  This morning the first thing Bella did was come and ask me to turn on the light to her "
new room".  The light switch is oddly located outside.

I think we will play a game of shape bean bag now.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

yes, another quilt

I saw a really cute design here for a quilt and decided to do it.  My friend, Heather, gave me some cute fabric that I was sure would work really well for it.  Monday evening, after I got done with work, I started it.  I got it mostly finished yesterday and now all there is left to do is finish binding it...BY HAND!  I have NEVER finished a quilt by hand.  I like to take the shortcuts and just do it on the machine.  But this time I thought I would do it the right way.  So far I am only about 6" into doing it.

Take a look at the progress:

Sewed on the letters and bird.  Don't worry, I will give the little bird feet later.

I added the first rows of colored fabric to the white fabric.

I finished the other two sides.

Then I added the batting and stitched a zigzag stitch around the border.

At this point I cut out and sewed all the pieces for the entire back piece but for some reason didn't take a picture.

Then I put the front and back panel together and adding the binding.



Close up of binding.  Right now it looks finished but really it is all pinned waiting for me hand stitch the rest.  Yikes!

I really like it.  And like the other things I do, it is far from perfect but I don't care.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

corn on the cob

Jorge works for a glass company.  They install windows and doors and such in houses and businesses.  Yesterday he worked on a house on a farm and they sent him back with a bunch of corn.  It was 12 ears total.

I husked them all and froze some of them.  The rest I put directly on the stove so we could enjoy some corn on the cob.

The girls loved it!

Friday, August 20, 2010

a little puppy money

Lately I have been struggling with the girls.  From month to month it seems to change what they resist the most.  Right now it is cleaning their room.  Or in general, doing what they are told when they are told.  I know, it is a typical toddler thing, testing the boundaries.  But for me it is a challenge to deal with both of them while juggling everything else in the daily routine.

I was trying to come up with a way that I could encourage them to do as they are told and in a timely manner.  The answer (for us), puppy money!

These girls LOVE money.  I mean who doesn't.  But, I really don't want to give them real money to do anything.  I more or less just wanted a reward system.  I looked on line for play money and found this.  Perfect!

I printed out several sheets, cut them up and decorated a large plastic cup so the girls would have somewhere to store all their puppy money.

Let me tell you, it is working really well!  Not to say it has worked a miracle, but the girls are responding better with the puppy money as an incentive.  I told them as soon as they get so much puppy money they can go to the store and get a little treat.

We are only a few days in so I hope the excitement of it all doesn't fade that much.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

a playdough kind of day

I found a recipe to make playdough and thought I would give it a whirl.  I did have to substitute one ingredient, cream of tartar, and I think the substitution ( x3 of vinegar was the sub for it) made it a tiny bit sticky but that didn't stop the fun.  Also, I used liquid food coloring and didn't have an issue with it, just FYI.

Overall it turned out rather nicely.  I made 4 different colors.  I doubled the recipe so each of the girls would have plenty to play with.

Bella immediately started mixing everything together.

Surprisingly, Emily was more reserved and kept everything separate.

Now we have one giant multi-colored piece of playdough.

Both seemed to like it and played for a good amount of time.  That is the part I like.  That means they aren't fighting.

Friday, August 13, 2010

joy, joy, joy!

They were a complete success!  I couldn't be more overcome with joy!

Just look for yourself!

And, they were super easy to make.  Try them for yourself.  Here is the recipe again in case you don't want to scroll down to the last post.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

the good and the bad

I attempted to make crab rangoon the other day.

They look good, huh?

Well, they didn't taste very good.  The filling was fine.  Could have probably used a little sugar.  I think where it all went wrong was the wrappers.  I had to make the wonton wrappers from scratch.  The dough was kind of tough and doughy and I don't think I rolled it thin enough.  Or the cooking temp was off or something.

I was really disappointed.  And I don't really feel like a second attempt.  I will just have some when I visit the US.

The crab rangoon wasn't a success but the blueberry muffins that I made were!

Look good?  They were!

Next up crescent rolls.  I did try some rolls the other day and they turned out not so well.  I followed all the steps...  I am on the hunt for a no-fail bread/roll recipe.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

busy and fun friday

Yesterday Jorge took the afternoon off work so we could hang out together.  His working hours kind of suck and he is not home very often.  So, it was a nice change of pace.

(Warning:  Photo filled blog post! -- some not so great quality)

He came home, picked me up and we drove over to the Bodega (a sister of Wal-Mart) in San Juan.  It is a little bigger town and always has a better variety of groceries and such.  This trip was fun because the store has added more products.  Of course it made me happy.

Still having a full freezer/fridge I couldn't buy much, but only a 20 minute drive keeps me from that store.  Not too bad.  I did bring home a few goodies.  Take a look. (It is the little things that make me happy!)

I LOVE these egg noodles!  Blueberries!  Tomato soup!  Bacon bits!  And there were other goodies that I was excited about.  There were more varieties of pasta and other frozen berries and those concentrated frozen cans of juice and other things that I just don't remember.  Those will be another shopping trip.

After our fun trip to the store we dropped off all the groceries and went to a little restaurant that is about 5 to 10 minutes outside of town.  I have no idea the name of it but that isn't really important.  I did take a picture of the place.

They have these drinks that are made with Fresca, fruit juice and a little tequila.  And what a festive way to serve them.  The restaurant doesn't have any windows so the breeze blows right through and makes it feel so tropical.  They have chips and salsa which is nice.

We finished there and a little later had a few drinks from a little bar.  Jorge isn't into having his picture taken so this is as good as it gets.

Later we meet up with a couple friends and went downtown.  It was pretty busy there.  We had a few drinks, ran into a bunch of people we knew and I had some cotton candy.  (See the purple tongue.)

It was a great day!