Visiting with Santa at Southcenter Mall

I am a strong believer of not celebrating Christmas before Thanksgiving…. BUT… The only exception I make is seeing Santa!


Last year we went to see Santa before Thanksgiving and it’s so much easier! And I think Santa is probably less stressed. I mean, I think I have a long To Do list before Christmas…. This guy has an even longer one…. Plus there’s shorter lines (if any) and you can get $5 off if you use the coupon below!



We printed our letter that we use every year. Yes, it’s on the blog and has been updated for 2015! The kiddo did a little proof reading while we waited in line!




I’m savoring this sweetness! He loves going to see Santa and take his letter!


This guy is the coolest! The other thing about seeing Santa before Thanksgiving is that the lines aren’t long and you get more chatting time. I even got to chat with him a bit!


We got a super sweet picture this year!




This year Santa pulled out a special treat for the kiddo! He gave him a naughty or nice coin. ANd luckily with the heads and tails, the coin landed on Nice for the kiddo. Santa told him to keep it in his pocket to always remind himself to be nice! So special!


Now, I don’t think every kid gets a coin, but every kid does get a little crayola gift! And don’t forget the candy canes!


At Southcenter Mall, you can register ahead and get in the Fast Pass line!


And don’t forget to print your coupon and take it with you! Go early! Do it!

Santa’s schedule is:

November 6 – December 6

10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Sunday: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.


December 12 – 23

9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Christmas



I was also very impressed with the decor this year. There are so many photo spots! You could even put off that professional photography and take all your holiday pictures right there around Santa! I love the big letters for Santa and Love. The trees were pretty cool too and make great backdrops! I took so many pictures!


Aren’t they cute???

I have been compensated with either payment or product for this post. All opinions are my own, honest opinions!





Pinterest Try Tuesday- Super Balls…

We were very sad… Today I present another installment of Pinterest Try Tuesday, but this week we have a Pinterest Fail… Sad….


This week we decided to make super balls. Which I think are the plastic balls that bounce. We weren’t completely sure, but we decided to try it anyway.

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We followed the tutorial from Making Memories with Your Kids. Check out the original tutorial for the details (because you don’t want to follow mine if it’s super balls you are looking for!!) Her’s look amazing! Ours…. Not so much!


The tutorial calls for glue, food coloring, borax, cornstarch and water. All the materials we had at home, so luckily this was a free one for us!


We seemed to follow the directions correctly. First we mixed the glue and food coloring.


Then we mixed the cornstarch, borax and water.


And we mixed the two concoctions together. Still following the directions to a tee!


We pulled out our goo. Looks pretty much exactly like Making Memories goo….



Then we started to roll them into a ball. And we rolled. And we rolled some more. But they never really changed into a ball. Now if you are looking for a way to make brains for your halloween party… This would be great prop! It even felt kinda like brains. Or how I imagine brains to feel like, since I’ve never actually rolled brains around in my hands….


So we called this a fail and cleaned up the mess!

I saw this done on another blog, following the same tutorial, and it worked for them. I have no idea what I am doing wrong. I want to give it another try, but I’m on my own. The kiddo is done with it. For a little boy that loves making art, he does not like to get very gooey! If I have better luck next time, I’ll let you know!

Have you ever tried this? Did it work? If you see I did something wrong, please let me know!




A New Lego Store and a Real Master Builder

As you’ve probably noticed, via IG and our Lego Valentines, we love Lego’s at our house! So when I had the opportunity to attend our new Lego Store Grand Opening at SouthCenter Mall and meet a real live Master Builder, I said YEP!


But when I said yes, I had no idea that there are only 7 Master Builders in the whole world! Did you know that? My knowledge of Master Builders comes from the Lego Movie! So I got totally schooled! There are only 7! We got to meet one of the 7. And his son is another one!


Do you have a favorite brick? Well, one of mine is the piece that makes the hearts. My son loves the jewels that can either be jewels, or flames or Chi (if he’s playing Chima). But our Master Builder friend, Dan, has a different favorite! His is the 2×4 brick! I thought he would have had a super fancy favorite, but no, it’s the workhorse of Legos!


We asked how would one become a Master Builder. In his words he works with a nice group of ‘nutty, creative people’! Dan has a background in art and working in a model shop, but most of the ‘young guys’ coming up have computer backgrounds with 3D renderings. The studios render the new sets in Maya and then import the 3D model into a Lego Brick Builder software that slices and dices the 3D models into brick shapes.

The Master Builders do not actually design the Lego sets. That happens in Denmark. But they do lead a super busy life! Dan was in Seattle one weekend, then home to host the Lego Picnic, then off to Austin and Fort Worth, Texas, to do building projects with kids at the Children’s Hospital and Kids Fest! Then he gets to head to Mexico City for an event. And on and on!


We were also wondering what the day to day life of a Master Builder is like. Dan told us he does all sorts of events like I mentioned. He sees thousands of kids! When he’s not designing events worldwide, he also does real life things like expense reports and new employee orientation. And when designing the events and giant Lego sculptures, they have been known to use, shhhhh, Kragle!!! AHHHHH!!!! Ok, it’s not exactly like the Kragle in the movie, but it does have a similar effect.





The awesome event at Southcenter Mall had a fun set-up to help the Master Builder build an 8′ Hulk. All the kids, and adults, too, used 39 small bricks to make a super sized brick for the Hulk. We made 3 big bricks and handed them over for Dan to find a spot for!


Dan knows exactly how many blocks make up the Hulk, but he couldn’t tell us! They were having a giveaway to whoever guessed the right number. We haven’t heard from them, so I don’t think we guessed correctly!


And we got to meet this guy! I hope he works at the new store, because he was super fun! How can you not love someone in a Lego tie???


So then we headed to the new store! It seemed like a pretty typical store, but did you know all the activities that the stores have? So if you didn’t get to go to the Grand Opening, you’ve got plenty more opportunities to have fun at the store! Although the events fill up fast, so you’ll have to keep an eye out for when registrations open! They have a mini model event, Lego clubs also with a mini build activity, free sets with purchases, Lego passport events! Be sure to check out their calendar (or your own local store’s calendar)!


Back to our interview with Dan…


We asked what his all time favorite project was… It was a giant apple in NYC! I google it and you can see Dan, his son one of the other Lego Master Builders, and a couple of other Master Builders! Watch it here!

My big question that I wanted to know was whether or not a Master Builder plays with Legos at home once they are done with a long day of work. Dan said that he does have Legos at home, but if he’s going to build something, he usually stays at work where he has access to way more bricks! I think my kiddo would never come home if he worked as a Master Builder!


Thanks Dan for a fun event and to Lego for giving us the opportunity to meet a Master Builder!

I can’t wait to take advantage of more of the fun events at our new Lego Store! Be sure to check out your local store too!



Charley Harper Inspired Cardinal Mini Quilt

I think I threw this image out as a teaser sometime back. I actually made it last year, but never showed it off! I was waiting until I had the pattern to go with it. But I never made a pattern. And honestly, I doubt I’ll ever get to it! I just made this one up as I went along and I don’t have it and I haven’t taken the time to recreate it yet!


I made this for a swap that our Seattle Modern Quilt Guild did last year! We did a secret mini swap! And I knew my partner loved Charley Harper, so I decided to take a piece of his awesome art and make it into a quilt!


Since it was a secret swap I had to be careful of the pictures I posted! I just loved this one! I started making it with 2×2 squares and was getting HUGE! So I switched gears and ended up with this guy!


image via Charley Harper Art Studio

If you don’t know Charley Harper, you should check him out! I love the art! I’ve actually wanted to make quilts out of his designs for quite some time. I just noticed a beagle that might have to be a quilt sometime soon…. Quite a bit of the art has been turned into mosaics, which then just calls out to be made into a quilt!


I decided to do the matchstick, skinny, stitching for the background. And faned out the tail. I didn’t want to applique the little eyes and knees so I used buttons!


And I used a super skinny ribbon for the legs. I could have done super skinny patchwork, but since I had the ribbon, I thought it might be easier! And it was!


I also always love checkin’ out the back of quilts and seeing how the stitching makes the patterns of the front.



Do you have a favorite piece of art that you want to make into a quilt?

My Double Sided Hexi Quilt

Ok, maybe calling it a quilt at this point is stretching it. Maybe I should call it my double sided hexi quilting project…


I posted a picture of this project on IG while I was stuck in one of the airports we got stuck in on our trip and no one knew what I was talking about. That’s probably because I think I made it up and I’m probably insane for doing it. But it’s going to be cool when it’s done in 30 years!


I thought this was a good idea when I started, but then I googled it and couldn’t find any tutorials… I knew that was a bad sign! But I love the idea, so I’m still going with it. And since you didn’t know what I was talking about, I thought I’d show ya what I’m up to!


So first I make a lot of hexi’s, just like normal. Well, kinda. I cut my paper pieces. I cut my hexi’s about a quarter inch larger than the paper. But I cut two pieces of fabric each time. The difference is I also cut batting the same size as my paper pieces. Then I baste the hexi’s, one with paper and one with batting.


And I keep doing that over and over and over….


Match up the front and back….


And then I ladder stitch the front and back together.


Then, pretty much like you’d sew together a regular hexi quilt, I sew together the pieces. Again using a ladder stitch.


And then I just keep going and going…. I need to put away the cross stitch and focus on this one for a while. I’ve been working on it for quite some time. Only it keeps getting puched to hte side for other on the go projects, like cross stitch and quilt binding!

Thanks for sticking by while I’ve been a bit absent. I had plans to blog about this and that while I was on vacation, but life got in the way. I’m going through a rough patch this summer, but I’m hoping I’m back to blogging and the rest will come around!


Paint Chip Challenge Quilt Show

As you know, I made my mountain mini quilt for the Paint Chip Challenge with the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild. I first showed my mini quilt on it’s own, but it’s now just a block in a bigger quilt!



We had a team blue, light blue, teal and grey. And some lucky ones got to add in a bit of yellow! We all made our own mini’s, 18 inches square. We knew that they were going to be hung together, but I know I didn’t have a good idea of what they would look like together!


The idea was a giant quilt! And that’s what it reads as for sure! The idea was to reflect on the idea that ‘the whole is greater than the sum of it’s parts’!


The whole family headed out and my husband started snapping a few pics!


We had more quilts than would fit in the wall hanging, so we ended up with a 49 patch wall quilt and a 9 patch table quilt! All of the pieces were amazing!




The show is at Dry Goods Design in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood. I wondered about the color palette for the paint chips. They are simliar to our quild colors, but not quite our colors. Then I didn’t think much more about it until I was looking at my pictures and saw this one… The colors are totally the shops colors! The light blue and darker blue of the logo, the shop has a lot of grey inside and a pop of yellow with the chairs! I get it now!


If you’re in Seattle and happen to be downtown… Or even if you aren’t downtown, you should head there anyway! The show is up through the end of the month!



Sewing Room Updates!

I don’t have a beautiful bright, airy, white sewing room like I see all over the internet… But I have a great space despite not having windows!! And now it’s even better!


A couple of weeks ago a friend posted her ironing board set-up on IG. I knew immediately that I had to copy her idea! So as genius as this is, I can’t take credit for it!

When I saw it I knew it was the perfect Mother’s Day present for me! So I asked my husband if he had gotten me anything…. Luckily, he hadn’t! So I told him what I wanted. He was fine with it until it registered that what I wanted came from Ikea! That’s part of the present, I told him! Taking me to Ikea! hehehe! And he must love me, becuase he went there with me. First time I’ve ever seen him even drive near an Ikea, much less venture in the front door!


I hated my ironing board and all the stuff that would pile up on it and under it! And then to get to my shelves behind it, I had to move everything, then slide the ironing board and hope the iron didn’t fall on my head. I guess I could have moved the iron, but hey, we all need a little risk, right?

And the bookshelf we used is basically the same size as the ironing board! A few inches longer, but not much! So it doesn’t take up much more space at all!


It all starts with an Ikea book shelf…. I’m in love with this one, becuase I like all the different sized holes. We have 2 others for the playroom already! My friend used the one with 8 holes. The other thing about this one, is that it’s a little wider, or taller once you turn it on it’s side. I like a tall ironing board!


Then the dear husband made a trip to the hardware store for a piece of wood. We got a shelf that was the exact same depth of the bookshelf. He cut it to the right length. I got the ironing board cover fabric and cut it down to size. and a piece of fabric. This fabric is actually a lovely sheet fabric that I happened to be hoarding! Then he helped me staple the ironing board fabric and the cover fabric around the board.


We added locking wheels. 6. Maybe could have used 8, but I think the six work fine.


I just dropped the top right on top. So far I haven’t secured the top to the shelf. But it’s pretty heavy that I don’t think it will move around too much. I haven’t had a problem yet. I was also thinking that I might add cutting boards under the ironing board for a really long cutting surface…. But I haven’t done that yet!


And it’s just an inch or two higher than the counter, but it’s at a height that I can actually sew standing up. That will be really nice when I’m doing a lot of little pieces that need sewing, ironing, sewing, ironing, sewing, ironing….


Now, I don’t have all the piles under the ironing board. I have a spot for all the stuff that used to sit on top of the ironing board, so I have a full length ironing board again. I can easily roll it out to get to the fabric behind it. I can roll it out to let the large fabrics slide over each side as I iron! And when it’s in it’s spot, the room actually feels much bigger! Nice!

Thank you very much, golddogmom, for the inspiration! And to the family for helping get it and put it all together!



The Kiddos BackPack

Ok, now this one is LONG overdue! This is probably one of my favorite projects from last year that I somehow never shared!


There’s no tutorial. There’s no pattern. This was a labor of love! I totally made it up as I went along! In hindsight, I wish I had made a pattern as I went. But I didn’t! I knew I could make it. The kiddo was super excited to design his own backpack. So we went for it!


The flap is the outside of the alien’s ship. And then when you open it, you see the alien driving his ship around in outer space!


I’m so glad the kiddo likes it! I didn’t have to buy too much to make it. So in that sense, it was cheaper than buying one. But in the amount of time it took to think about it, design it in my head and then put it all together. Um…. I’m glad there are no dollar signs to add up there, because that would put it way over the cost of just buying one! But it was so worth it! And now I know how to make it again!


I made a zipper top. I added in the flaps when sewing together the outside and lining. Topstitched and then added the zipper.


The straps are padded and adjustable. And you have to have a hanging hook, of course!


I also added little triangular pieces at the bottom of the sides for the adjustable strap. I got this detail idea off his last backpack that he said was oto baby for Kindergarten! But adding them to the side seam totally helps the bag lay right on his back!


Each side has an elastic pocket. These get used for sneaking legos into school…. But they fit a water bottle, if needed!


Yes, I added a name tag…. You know, just in case it was to get confused with someone else’s backpack… Ha!


And I added a quilted, velcro pocket on the inside. And I’m not sure this pocket has ever been used… Oh, well! It’s there if we need it!



As much work as it was, we had such fun putting it together! Dad was in on the alien design as well. It all started on a dog walk and the kiddo came up with a crazy idea. I had to tone ti down a little bit to fit on the back pack! I love how it changes from outer space to inside the spaceship!


He loves it! His best friend’s mom told me a funny story! Her son wants a new backpack so they were looking. Then her son said, ‘Max’s mom MADE his!’ I don’t think his mom was happy with me! I think she still likes me though!


Have you ever made a backpack? Maybe if I make another, I’ll make a pattern! I’m hoping this one lasts for next year too, though!

Everything I Made in 2014

This is the last post about 2014! I love seeing it all in one place!


OK! So technically it’s everything I blogged about in 2014. There are a few things I made that I haven’t shown you yet, like the kiddos backpack and everything for a fantastic Star Wars party! And there are a few things in here that were technically made in 2013, like some of the Project Run and Play clothes. But who is really taking notes here? I figure it all evens out in the end, huh!?!

So last year it came to 82 projects (and a lot of them I made multiples of!). I was behind this year… Only 72 projects… I’m on a roll this year, so I think I’ll beat both years this year if I keep on like I have been so far!

All the tutorial pages, Sewing Tutorials, Crafty Tutorials and the Sew Ready to Play Tutorials are up to date now! If you see something with a bad link or a tutorial that doesn’t’ have a button, please let me know!

Any ideas for me for this year? Let me know! (not that I don’t have a list already, but I’d love to hear your suggestions!)

Happy New Year (again) and best wishes for another productive year! (I’m off to put the kiddo to bed so I can getting sewing! Oh, Friday, I love you!)

2014 Favorites!

I started a little tradition a couple of years ago looking back at my favorite posts from each month! You can see 2013 and 2012…. I love just seeing how the kiddo has changed too!



In January I had a great time sewing for Project Run and Play despite the fact I was voted off the island first! I made this outfit for the kiddo and we had such a fun time doing the photoshoot, that it makes it to my all time favorite post of the year!

In February I made this huge tote for carrying my quilts around while I’m sewing on the binding and I just love it!

In March I did a tutorial on making sandwich/snack bags. We use them all the time and it sounds like yall have enjoyed making them too!

In April I did a tutorial on the little bow tie that I made the kiddo! I really loved his whole Easter outfit that this came from!

In May I blogged about this fun little dog cape that ‘Santa’ had brought to the pup.

In June I published my first quilt pattern, The ‘Gator Quilt! It was a long process with a bunch of wonderful pattern reviewers, but worth it!

In July I showed you our preschool auction that I helped with the decorations. I just love decorating for a party!

In August I made a really cool dry erase notebook (with a tutorial)! I’m still totally in love with this one! If you haven’t made one, you should! Nice, simple, inexpensive!

In September, as part of the yearly Sew Ready to Play series (which I now have links for all in one place), I made a boom box pillow to plug your iphone into! I think this might be my favorite project all year!

In October I released my second quilting pattern, The Bat Block. And made these bat pillows with it. I didn’t really want to pack them away after Halloween, but they didn’t quite go with the Christmas decorations!

In November, I shared how I re-upholstered our dining room chairs (yep, with tutorial). They are SOOOO much nicer now then they were. I’m still not sold they will be with us forever, but I gave them some more time with us.

And lastly, in December, I made a Ice Castle Kit, AKA a fort kit made of icey looking fabric. There’s also a printable if you want to make your own! I think it’s pretty cool!


Stay tuned, I have a couple more ‘look backs’ coming up! Do you have a favorite project I made this year? Is there something you’d like to see this year?


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