Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Two Things On Tuesday


We love strawberry picking...okay I love it more than the girls, but they always seem to have a fun time. We went the perfect time this year. It was nice and cool and the strawberries were plentiful (check in later this week for my strawberry lemon marmalade recipe-so yummy!).

Got one!
The best part is tasting the merchandise!
After awhile the girls got bored. Good thing there was plenty of room for running. They did about 7 laps each.
This year Lo was more interested in finding slugs than strawberries.

I totally agree with you NoJo...GROSS!
All our hard work gave us 8 pounds of berries!!!
Silly faces!
Such a fun day with my girls!


This summer we have decided to relax. No vacations. No lessons of any kind. No running here or there. Just us and the pool. It has only been open two days and it has been heaven! If you need me, you know where to find me!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Make Over Your Monday

So how did you do this week with being patient? Honestly, I did awful! I'm really going to have to work on this one! My kids had serious cases of spring fever and this mama was WAY to tired to join in on the excitement. Like everyone, I'm a work in progress. Today is a new start to the week and I'm just going to keep on trying!

This week's challenge:

It's hard to remember that it was not that long ago that we lived without DVRs, Facebook, Twitter and the need to have every bit of technology with us at every moment of our day. I'll be the first to admit I'm totally addicted to all of the above. I have three, yes THREE, DVRs in my house and they are usually working overtime, my phone is with my at all times and I unnecessarily long for whatever the latest "must have" Steve Jobs says I need. So this week let's all go back. Instead of Words With Friends, drag out an actual Scrabble board and have a family game night. Instead of texting, pick up the phone and call your friends/family/significant other, they'll be happy to hear your voice.  Turn off the computer, cell phone, Kindle, iPad, iPod, iWhatever, TV and reconnect with the things you loved doing before we were all so plugged in. Don't worry, it'll all still be there when you get back!

Have a great week and don't forget to share how you did on last week's challenge!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

5 Minute Organization

Happy Sunday! The weather is GORGEOUS today and we are headin' to the pool! Wherever you are I wish you a beautiful and fun-filled weekend with the family!

Here is a quick and super smart way to organize all your cords and plugs. It was one of my first pins on Pinterest and I can't believe I never thought of it myself. All those years wasted following the end of the cord to it's home...time wasted that I'll never get back. Now I just need to eat A LOT of bread...and I'm totally up to that task!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

For The Love of Japan Update

Remember my T-shirt makin' party? It was so much fun!

Chelsea over at Pink Fig Design posted an update and her blog. Check it out! It feels great to be part of such a wonderful project and makes me smile knowing that somewhere in Japan there are 13 girls wearing the shirts we made!

Happy long weekend and thanks for checkin' in!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Jiaozi (Dumplings)

Ni Hao!

Lo's been playing her Kai-Lan game nonstop so I really wasn't surprised when she asked to make dumplings. I love that her idea of a fun activity is cooking! I searched the web for a kid-friendly recipe and thanks to Buckeroo Mama we found a great evening activity. I made the filling the night before and then the girls and I assembled them the next day.

Ingredients (for 18 servings)
For the Dumplings:

  • 30-70 Dumpling Wrappers-I went to 3 different stores and could not find them anywhere. I think an Asian market would be your best bet. I eventually just used Egg Roll Wrappers and they were fine, but next time I will try harder to find the dumpling wrappers.

  • 1 pound minced pork-I used ground turkey 
  • Coriander, chopped up finely (as much as you want)
  • 1 stalk Chinese celery (I couldn't find it so I omitted it)
  • Flax seed (optional)
  • 1/2 whole carrot grated
  • 1/2cup mushrooms, diced (optional)
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1T fresh ginger, grated
  • 1-5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 1/2t corn starch
  • salt and pepper
For the Dipping Sauce:
  • 2T and 2t Soy Sauce
  • 1-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 lemon, juiced
  • sugar
  • 1/2t sesame oil
  • chili pepper, thinly sliced (optional)

Dipping Sauce

Mix ingredients in a small bowl. You can also make the sauce the night before and keep in the fridge.

To make the filling

  1. In a food processor, combine coriander, celery, and flax seeds. Blend
  2. In a big mixing bowl, combine blended ingredients with the rest of the ingredients (except for the dumpling wrappers and the dipping sauce ingredients).
  3. You can make the night before and keep in the fridge overnight. This allows the flavors to develop more.

To assemble the dumplings

1. Have a shallow bowl of water on hand.
2. Dust baking sheet with flour.
3. Start scooping a teaspoon of the filling onto the dumpling wrapper (you'll need more filling if you are using egg roll wrappers).

Fold the wrapper over, so that the filling is covered. Before "sealing" the dumpling, dip your finger into the bowl of water and slightly wet the edges of the wrapper so that it will seal better. 

4. Place on floured baking sheet. Continue assembling until you have used all the filling.
Since we used Egg Roll Wrappers our's looked like this:

If you are using Dumpling Wrappers your's should look like this:

Cooking the Dumplings

1. Boil some water in a big pot. Add a couple of drops of oil so that the dumplings will not stick together. You could also use chicken or vegetable broth too.
2. Once the water is boiling drop in the dumplings. How many dumplings you drop in will depend on the size of your pot. You wouldn't want to drop in too many at one time, they may stick together. 
3. When the dumplings float up, you can scoop them out. Drain. They're now ready to serve. Serve with dipping sauce on the side.
4. ENJOY!!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Get A Grip-Drawstring Bag Tutorial

A friend of mine asked me to make her daughter a grip bag.

My response?

"Sure!"..."What's a grip bag???"

That's the great thing about crafty, you're always learning something new.

Grip bags are used by gymnasts to hold their grips, tape and other supplies they may need for their meets. Essentially they are small drawstring bags.


  • Fabric-about 1/2yd. I recommend home dec. weight over cotton. Cotton would work, but will be thin and this bag doesn't have a lining.
  • Rotary cutter and mat
  • Coordinating thread
  • Cord or ribbon for the drawstring (I used cotton cord that I had leftover from my Clothespin Frame project)
  • Iron
  • Pinking shears (optional)
  • Water soluble pen (optional, but nice to have)


  • Determine what size you would like your bag to be, remembering to account for seam allowances. I used a tutorial from The Purl Bee (If you're not familiar with The Purl Bee you MUST check out their site. There are so many wonderful projects, ideas and tutorials). You will be cutting out one piece of fabric and folding it in half. My fabric was 13in x 26in. Once folded I had a 13in x 13in square. No matter what size your bag you will still follow all the directions below. I also used my embroidery machine to put a name on my bag. You could also put on an applique or freezer paper stencil. If you are going to embellish your bag I would recommend doing it BEFORE any sewing.
  • Fold your fabric in half-RIGHT SIDES FACING-matching the two 13 inch sides. You should now have a 13 inch square.
  • Starting at the fold, sew along the right and left sides of the bag, stopping 2 inches from the top on each side. I used a water-soluble marker to mark where I needed to stop
  • Since there is no lining, the raw edges are exposed on the inside of the bag. I used my pinking shears to make it look pretty and keep the edges from fraying.
  • Using your iron, fold over the edge on the right-hand-side of the of the bag 1/4 inch and press. Repeat on the left-hand-side.

  • Fold over the top of the bag 1/4 inch and press.
  • Fold over 3/4 inch and press. You have now made the casing on one side of the bag.
  • Sew along the bottom edge with a 1/6 inch seam allowance. Repeat on the other side of the bag. 

  • You should have two separate casings.
  • With the bag still inside-out, lay the two side seams together. 

  • Using a ruler and water-soluable pen, make a line perpendicular to the seam, 2 inches from the point of the bag.
  • Sew on top of the line you just made. Using your pinking shears cut the corner of the bag off, careful no to clip any of the stitches you just made.
  • Repeat on the other side of the bag. You have now made your gussets.
  • Attach a safety-pin to one end of your cord/ribbon. Thread it through then end of one of the casings and back through the other side so that both ends of the cord/ribbon are on the same side.
  • Repeat, starting on the other side. You should have two ends of cord/ribbon on each side of the bag. Leave about 6 inches on either side and tie the ends into a knot. Cut off the excess cord/ribbon.
  • When you pull on the cord/ribbon the bag will cinch closed.

It's also fun to experiment with different fabrics. I'm thinking that I need to make a few that are lined with rip-stop nylon to put our dirty boots in after riding lessons.

I saw these cute alphabet rocks on I Am Momma-Hear Me Roar the other day. Put them in a drawstring bag and you've got a fabulous and unique gift.
You can make your own pretty shoe bags.
Looking for more of a challenge? Check out this tutorial for the Bagsket by Foofanagle. So cute!

So many possibilities!

So much fun!

As always...I'd LOVE to see what you make so send pictures my way!!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Day At The Museum

We've had some really unpredictable weather here in Indy. Sunny one minute and thunder and lightening the next. Not wanting to risk it, the girls and I decided to head to the Children's Museum for some fun!

The Barbie exhibit has been there for awhile, but we never get tired of it! It's appealing to girls old and young.

Lo loves the dress up area and walking on the catwalk.

While the "models" are strutting their stuff the paparazzi can get in on the action too!

Nojo's favorite part is the hair and make-up area.

There is also an area where you can design your own Barbie Fashions.
I LOVE seeing all the Barbies they have on display. This is one of the original Barbies, still in her box and with all the original accessories.
This one is made entirely of Swarovski crystals...so pretty and sparkly!
We also got to check out the new Dora and Diego exhibit.
There were so many activities for the girls to do. Lo's favorite was the animal rescue center where you get learn about different animals and take care of them. As a future veterinarian it didn't surprise me she loved it so much!
It was a great place for the girls to play and be silly!