Friday, July 31, 2009

Storytime Fun: Colors Everywhere!

"A" is 20 1/2 months.

This week I did a color theme with my little girl. We used the following books:

Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle

Cat's Colors by Jane Cabrera

Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh

White Rabbit's Color Book by Alan Baker

We practiced stringing Froot Loops on ribbon, naming the colors as we went. (We need lots more practice stringing items!) We also got out a new Melissa and Doug stacking toy and I had her practice getting specific colors to stack on the pegs. This was a baby shower gift that she is just now growing into. It was so fun to bring out something new that was a gift!

We used some of the sample activities from the Itty Bitty Bookworm which went along with the book Cat's Colors. I hope to do at least one more activity to demonstrate color mixing with different colored water. Hopefully, it will be fun enough she'll want to watch me do it!


Next week, we are hoping to do a week long beach/ocean theme. Do you have any favorite books about colors?

Check out 1+1+1=1 for more Tot School!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Recipe: Cinnamon Rolls

I just finished making cinnamon rolls using this recipe for Soft, Moist, and Gooey Cinnamon Buns from AllRecipes. It was the first time I've used my bread machine to make cinnamon rolls, and it was kind of fun! Some extra work, yes, but the finished product was worth it. This is a very good recipe, so check it out if you like cinnamon rolls!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Extra 50% Off Clearance at Old Navy


I saw a Tweet earlier today from Freebies for Mom that said she had heard via Seattle Moms Deal Finder that Old Navy clearance is an extra 50% in stores. We checked it out tonight, and ours was, too! They didn't have lots of stuff, but a nice variety was still available.

We picked up some goodies in the next couple of sizes for our little one and only spent $11.00 for 5 pieces. Combined with some good garage sale finds from this summer, and I have a nice stash of clothing started in 2T, 3T, and 4T.

Let me know if your clearance is an extra 50% off, too and if you find any great bargains!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Last Week for Christmas in July at CJ's Craft Corner!


I had a chance this weekend to add some items to our Etsy shop, CJ's Craft Corner. This is the final week for our Christmas in July special! Through the end of the month, pay regular shipping on your first item, get free shipping on a second item! Please stop over and take a look at some of our new items!






















Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Fabric Finds at Joann

I have been doing more crafting and sewing over the last couple of months and my mom is thrilled to have someone to go with to Joann Fabric. I've always loved fabric, but since I started shopping at Etsy, I am finding some designer fabrics that I really love.

I was so excited last night to find some of this designer fabric at our local Joann store! Now, I know these fabrics are a few years old, but I still love them. My favorites (which we bought last night) were this Alexander Henry Apples+Pears in Blue and this Robert Kaufman Brown Pear fabric.

Now to figure what to make with these fabrics! Several of the fabrics are available online as well such as this Alexander Henry Kleo Pink and the matching Bangle Dots fabric. They also have this lemon print fabric called Juicy by Alexander Henry.

Have you seen these fabrics at your local Joann store? Do they have others? Who are some of your favorite fabric designers?

School Supply Sales

I love buying back to school supplies! The deals are so good and I think it reminds me of getting ready for my classroom when I was a teacher. I have been talking myself out of buying too many supplies this year, because I do have some leftovers from previous years and my little one isn't school age yet.

After reading this fabulous post, 7 Creative Uses for School Supplies, from Life as Mom, I definitely think I will be getting some school supplies while they are on sale! Love these ideas! What do you do with extra school supplies?

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Super Savings Saturday: Kroger and Meijer

It's been a long time since I've done one of these posts, but we did a couple of small trips this week that were pretty good. The best one was Kroger. I used the Kroger Snack at Mommy Snacks to help put together the trip and take advantage of the $5 off 10 promotion. We got:
  • 2 Sargento sliced cheeses
  • 1 Kraft shredded cheese
  • 2 Stayfree pads
  • 1 Speedstick deodorant
  • 1 Yo-Baby Yogurt 6 pack (not part of the promotion, but I had gotten a Catalina earlier in the week to get a FREE pack!)
  • 1 Quaker rice snacks
  • 2 Healthy Choice Meals
  • 1 2-Liter of Coke
Total after coupons: $12.04

We also picked up a few deals at Meijer, the highlights including Northland Cranberry Juice for $1.50 a bottle and Tyson Chicken Breasts for $4.99. They also had some good toy clearance. I picked up some jump ropes and high bounce balls for Operation Christmas Child in the fall. We got our little one a child-size chair for 75% off and a foam hopscotch mat for 75% off.

I also took advantage of the $5 Real Simple subscription this week, the SkinCareRX $20 gift card offer, and cashed in $10 in gift cards to Amazon.com earned through Swagbucks. I have some fun packages coming the mail now!

Check out Super Savings Saturday at Money Saving Mom for more stories of sales and saving!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Saving on Flowers

Recently, my husband's grandmother passed away. We wanted to send flowers, but in the past have had some trouble with sending flowers through some of the online companies. The flowers weren't very similar to what was pictured, plus are fairly expensive.

Since we live in the same town as the funeral, I purchased flowers and a vase and put together an arrangement. We delivered the flowers to the funeral home ahead of the calling hours. The flowers probably cost about 1/2 of what a similar florist arrangement would have cost. (I wish I had taken a picture, but I forgot.)

Obviously, this wouldn't work if the funeral were out of town, but I'm curious...have any of you done your own flower arrangements for funerals? When my grandmother passed away a couple of years ago, I purchased roses and created a nosegay of roses for that funeral. This was a great deal cheaper than similar nosegays of florist created roses.

What do you typically do for funeral flowers?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Impromptu Baking/Cooking Afternoon

Sorry for the blog hiatus! I had some unexpected work and family obligations that made the blog take a back seat for a bit, but I'm glad to be back.

This afternoon, I had the urge to do some cooking and baking as I haven't had a chance to do so in awhile. I made 3 things: Tuna Noodle Casserole (no recipe, just noodles, cream of mushroom soup, tuna, and crushed potato chips), Blueberry Coffee Cake (courtesy of All Recipes), and Pizza and Calzone Dough (courtesy of Life as Mom).

It was so nice to have productive time in the kitchen. The calzone dough will work for 3 meals for us and we have leftovers of the casserole after having it for dinner tonight. The coffee cake is delicious...a recipe that is a definite keeper!

What are some of your favorite blueberry recipes?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A Little Harvest


We did some vegetable gardening for the first time this year. We put some in containers and made one small raised bed. We have had some big failures (spinach that went to seed and broccoli that didn't yield), but the little successes (handfuls of strawberries and this pile of lettuce) have made it worth it.

Next year, we will make at least one more raised bed, and try some more things in the beds. Oh, did I mention I thought it would be fun to grow pumpkins? They are doing so well, they are threatening to take over spots in our yard. They started to flower, so I think there are pumpkins coming! I'll post some pictures of the pumpkins soon.

How is your garden growing? What are you harvesting?

Monday, July 6, 2009

Christmas in July at CJ's Craft Corner

I hope everyone had a great 4th of July weekend! For the month of July, we'll be running a Christmas in July special at CJ's Craft Corner. Purchase one item at regular shipping, get free shipping on a second item. Get a head start on your Christmas shopping!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Fourth of July Fun

I haven't made anything fabulous for 4th of July, but I love all of the red, white, and blue! I made a little garland to hang in our living room out of scrapbook paper, and I made some little July 4th "firecrackers" for my storytime kids and my daughter. I covered paper towel rolls (cut in half) with scrapbook paper, and attached ribbon and crepe paper to make these. They also are great for waving around, maybe at a parade!



I'm also hoping to make these chocolate cupcakes (from the Farm Chicks) with white frosting and red, white, and blue sprinkles to take to a family birthday party/4th of July gathering. Here are a few more great fourth of July ideas!

Patriotic Crafts and Activities @ ABC and 123
Fourth of July Roundup @ One Pretty Thing
Fourth of July Printable Tags @ Living Locurto
Fourth of July @ Skip to My Lou


What are your fourth of July plans?

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Sewing Clothes for Myself

Over the last two weeks, I have attempted for the first time in years, to make myself some clothes. The first thing I tried was a simple elastic waist skirt. The fabric was only $2.50 a yard, so I got a yard and a half. I drafted my pattern (with my engineer husband's help!), and used this tutorial from Darling Petunia to help me as I put the skirt together. Here is the finished product! (Sorry for the picture...figuring out the new camera!)

Then, I saw this Anthropologie-inspired shirt tutorial and had to give it a try. (The fabric was $1.50 a yard!) This was much more difficult and I was ready to scrap the whole thing a couple of days ago. I made some measuring mistakes when I cut out the bodice part of the shirt and it was way too tight. I ended up cutting the front apart and added a panel to the front to make it fit. It is in no way shape or form perfect...don't look too closely at it...but I still love it! (As a side note, does anyone know what this fabric is? I couldn't find any information on the fabric itself and would love to know the designer/fabric name.)


I don't know what project is next for me, but I have lots of fabric and ideas. We'll see what's next!

What are you working on? Check out Do It Yourself Day on A Soft Place to Land for more projects!
 

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