Vacation

I am going to be on vacation, heading to....


My home state...OHIO!!

My blog will also be on vacation!  I will be resuming my blog July 11th!  Make sure you come back to see the quilted purse I will have made that weekend prior & all my vaca photos!!!

Happy Summer Friends!!!

Guest Blogger: Thrill Me Thursday

Today, I have a guest blogger that will be doing, "Thrill Me Thursday".  You are in for a real treat!!!  She is pretty special to me...she is my sister!!  Let me introduce my sister, Christina...


She is an admirer of all things cute, including her two kids, Clark & Cora!  Not only does she have a great eye for new trends & design, she has an amazing vocal talent!  She has one of the most beautiful voices I have ever heard!  Seriously!  Christina will also be launching her own etsy shop soon, specializing in hair accessories for adults and children! I will let you all know when it opens!  I promise!

Alright...enough braggin' on my lil sister....Christina...take it from here:

Thanks Jenna! Just a quick side note, I have never blogged before, so I'll do my best to entertain you!! :)  So...this is what is thrilling me this week....


One of the things that I really enjoy is a website called Engadget.com. I know, I'm a geek! :) It's not very crafty either, but it keeps me caught up in all things tech-y!! I look at this website everyday cause there is something new like every hour to report!! Amazing. :) 

Something else that I stumbled across the other day was this really great hair accessories organizer


I can't wait to try it out for my daughter, but I want to do something with owls instead. My daughter Cora's room is decorated in owls right now. I'd like to say it's her favorite animal, but she's only 17 months old, so I don't think she has an opinion yet! :) 

So with all the hair accessories that I have been making lately, I have been trying to come up with a good idea to store all my ribbon. I came across this idea. 


What do you think? It's found at a website called thefrugalgirls.com. It's a great place to get ideas on ways to save money, and the things these girls come up with are amazing!! 

Just to give you an idea of some of the clips that I have made, here is a sample. I've done quite a few more, but I haven't taken pictures of them yet. 


Some of the books that I have been reading lately, is a series called The Hunger Games. If you haven't read them yet, pick up a copy at your local library or go to the book store to pick them up. There are 3 books in all and they are going to be coming out with a movie series as well. I can't wait. 


Well that's all I have for you today. I hope that I have thrilled you completely! :) Until next time....

<3 Christina

Banana Milkshakes

I have been going bananas over the yummy Banana Milk Shakes I have been making.

I know the "healthy" thing to do is to make banana smoothies with greek yogurt...

...but sometimes is tastes so good to be bad!!!

Making a banana milkshake is super easy (and oh-so-yummy!!!).

INGREDIENTS
  • Super Ripe Bananas (with lots of spots on them!)
  • Vanilla Ice Cream (your favorite brand!)
  • Milk
DIRECTIONS


{1} Use 2-3 super ripe bananas, you know, the ones that have spots all over them!  The more spots a banana has, the sweeter it is!


{2} Add bananas & ice cream to you blender (you can hand mix this, but it would take FOREVER)...I fill my blender with ice cream scoops all the way to the top! Then add a "splash" of milk.  Too much milk will make this milkshake into a milk-soup!

{3} Blend!  If it is too "soupy", just add more scoops of ice cream until you get the perfect consistency!


{4} Enjoy!!!!

Boo Hoo Owl Tutorial







May I introduce you to my newest friend?  Meet Ms.Soozie Boo-Hoo!  Part lovie, part boo-boo pack!  She is stuffed with comfy stuffing in the front, but has a secret layer of rice in the back!  Keep her in the fridge & bring her out to comfort bumps & bruises!


She is an upgrade to her super cool friends (the original Boo-hoo's).  The originals are completely stuffed with rice.  But just as cute & functional as Ms Soozie!  Here are the originals:




Wanna make a Boo Hoo of your own?  Now you can!  Just download & print the template (you can make the boo-hoo any size you want by enlarging it on a copier machine or on your printer) & follow the tutorial below!

SimplyJennaOwlTemplate(2)

SUPPLIES
  • Owl Template (or just free hand it)
  • 3 different fabrics (front, middle, back)
  • Stuffing
  • Rice, barley or flaxseed
  • Felt
  • Glue and/or embroidery thread
  • Sewing machine, needle & thread
  • Buttons, ribbons & what every you want to decorate your owl
DIRECTIONS

1. Print the template. Cut your fabric into 3 owl shapes. Put them in this order: Front, Back (make sure they are right side together), middle fabric.

2. Pin & sew all three owl shapes together, leaving at least a 1" opening for stuffing. Give at least 1/8"- 1/4"seam allowance. 

3.Turn your owl right side out.  Make sure that you are turning the front & back of owl out.

4. Inside your owl, you will have a front & back section.  Stuff the front half of the owl to your liking.  Add rice to the back half of the owl.

5. Whip Stitch the opening.

6. Cut your felt eyes & beak,  Sew a button onto the eyes & glue down all the felt parts onto the face.  You can stitch the felt on with embroidery thread if you'd like!   Add a bow to top of head (opt.).

Now you have a super comfy Boo Hoo!!!  Store your owl in the freezer & bring it out when your lovie has a bump or bruise!

This tutorial is meant to be used on a personal level & is copyrighted by Simply Jenna. It is NOT intended for you to sell these Boo Hoo's.

If you make a Boo Hoo & post about it on your blog.....PLEASE link back to my blog/tutorial & comment back here so I can enjoy your Boo Hoo!  It would rock my socks off!!

I have an ETSY shop & would love if you stopped!!  Check it out {HERE}


Sweet Bracelet

I kinda made this bracelet by accident...




I was making some beaded necklaces...


....and I had some extra fabric that was already sewed, but was too short to be made into a necklace....so it became a bracelet!!

I love how it turned out!  My favorite part is the ribbon.  It may be too dramatic for some, but I just love it!

Owl Tutorial Coming Soon!!!!


 Next week I will be posting a tutorial on how you can make your own Boo-Hoo!!!

Make sure you stop by for the tutorial & for more photos of this cutie!  This is just your sneaky-peeky!!!!

Free Motion Quilting 101

Sewwww....I am taking a class in a few week on how to make a quilted bag.  I can't wait!  I went to the shop where I am taking the class to get my supply list & to buy my fabric....when I saw on the paper that you need to come to class with your fabric already quilted.

Oh CRAFT!

One of the sweet ladies at the shop told me to come in the next week & the owner would teach me how to free motion quilt.

Then I in turn would have to turn around and teach my SIL Anabella who is also taking the class with me.

Lots of pressure to learn!!

Here I am at the shop....getting ready to make a zillion mistakes...


And here it is all done...with the zillion mistakes...




As I was quilting...I kept singing, "Just keep sewing, just keep sewing" like Dory for Nemo :)  I was really timid about doing this...and I noticed that I made more mistakes when I went slow...so I fired up my machine & went rouge!  The faster I went, the better it looked.

Did I use a pattern? Yes....it is called, "Going Double Maverick"!!! (remember the SNL skit with John McCain?"  Basically, I scribbled all over the fabric with the machine with no rhyme or reason!

And the owner Ann was right...you will never be able to see your mistakes in the end...and she is right!

Sew Serendipity

Oooo...wanna see what I got myself for my birthday?


I got the cooooolest book, Sew Serendipity!  I got it at the fabric shop that I frequent (a lot!). I know I over paid for it (by $10!!! YIKES!!) but I wanted to have it for our 11 hour drive home to Ohio next week.  I know I could have gotten it on Amazon, but I wanted to guarantee that I had it in time.  So it was worth it!  Plus the fabric shop I went to gave me a FREE sewing lesson.  So I call it even :)

What I LOVE about this book is that it gives you step by step instructions (with photos/illustrations) on how to make the cutest clothes...plus you get the patterns to 25 outfits!  Look at some of the things you can learn how to make:




Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would be interested in making my own clothes. Never.  But for some reason I have this "hankering" to make a skirt...one thing lead to another...and now I own this book!

Silly Video

Today my hubby & son wrote, filmed & edited a video, "Cars 2: Revenge of the Daddy Car"!!

So cute...you will love all the "special effects" (tooth floss...lol!!)


Cars 2: Revenge of the Daddy Car from Joseph Gilkes on Vimeo.


My son named the announcers, "Bob Evans" (after the restaurant) and Karen Carpenter (because the small car was skinny...lol...I told him about that Karen Carpenter died because she was too skinny around Christmas time...I guess he remembered that!) .  Funny stuff!

Bespoken

I am so in love with Art Gallery Fabrics.



One of my top 4 fabrics that I buy.  (I heart Art Gallery, Moda & Westminster Fabrics, Amy Butler)  But majority of all the fabrics that I buy tend to be Art Gallery.  They tend to me more "me".

A new "me" actually.

I tend to be more of a blue & green girl, but I have so fallen in love with the beautiful lines of fabric that Art Gallery has, I am now gravitating towards purples, pinks & yellows!

I am super excited about Art Gallery's new line that will be coming out in September, Bespoken


Aren't these fabrics yummy??  I especially love these..



I can see so many fun things to sew with these fabrics!!!!

iPotty

We are potty training our 3 year old son, Jaxon.  I have been putting off for various reason:

a.) I {hate} potty training.  Worst.Thing.Ever.

b.) I didn't know if he was ready.

c.) I was waiting for hubby to start summer vacation so I could have some backup

d.) Waiting for it to be hot, so we could let Jaxon run around in the buff.

e.) I {hate} potty training. Yep.Worst.Thing.Ever.

We are in day 2 of potting training.  It isn't going that bad actually.  Only putting a diaper on him at night....and he has woken up both mornings with a dry diaper.  We have had a few accidents.  Thank God for carpet cleaners & leather furniture!

A really cute & handy potty training tool has been my iTouch.  Well, more like the Pull-Up's Potty Training App.



It reminds us to put Jaxon on the potty at a set time (you can pick how often it rings).  We have it set for every hour.  Every hour we hear the theme song, "I'm a big kid now".  When he gets on the potty, I let him push, "Potty Now" and this cute lil song comes on.  When he is done, he gets to push a button that he "went potty".  Then it start to cheer for him & he gets a virtual sticker.  After 9 stars, he gets to play a game!  I am now the proud mama of 9 star potty trainer ;)

If you or someone you know is trying to potty train, search for the pull ups app on your apple device!


Almost Forgot

I *almost* forgot about my "Boo-Hoo Owls"!!









I made these last summer & they sparked my first interest in opening up an etsy shop.

But then Jett got pertusis & meningitis....

So then the other day I was cleaning up my room & found a Boo Hoo under my bed....Hoooo knows how long he had been under there!  Now that my baby is healthy, shop is open & I have some free time (summer break, baby!!)....I am going to try to make some Boo Hoo Owls to add to the shop!  I just had a snazzy new idea/improvement that I can't wait to try & show you (if it works out!)

Selecting BOY Fabrics by MADE




 I came across a really great blog post by one of my favorite bloggers, Dana from MADE.  Dana wrote all about how she selects boy fabric.  I have the hardest time wrapping my brain around picking out fabric for boys...even though I have 3 boys!

Go check  this blog post out!  She really opened my eyes to all the different fabrics that can be used for boys & she writes about how she sews with them!

Thanks Dana!!!!!

Craft Room at its WORST

I have never, ever, ever, ever claimed to be a super neat person.  Especially when it comes to crafting.  I don't know what happens....or how it happens...mess just happens!!

Now...please, let me preface this post by saying.  My craft room never, ever gets this messy.  My husband (the neat freak) wouldn't allow it!  I had been working on multiple projects (all at once!) and basically an atomic bomb of craft supplies went off on my desk!


Oooo.....this is REALLY bad.....shhh...please to not tell my mom that I blogged about this!!

Well, don't worry....I cleaned up my mess!!


Ahh...isn't that much better!!  I can breathe better!!

I promise to keep my craft room cleaner, crafters honor!!

Our Story, His Glory

This past Sunday, in a small portion of the message at church, our Pastor was talking about how we all have a "story".  A story about how God has changed us, moved us or has done something big in our lives.  It is "our story...but HIS glory"!

It was such a small tid-bit in the message, but it really stuck out to me.

Our Story.

What is MY story?

Well, I will tell you!

God has done miracles in our boys.  Each one of them.

Jaden.  He is our oldest.  Jaden was diagnosed with Autism when he was four years old.  He was also really speech delayed.  When he was two years old (before we knew he was autistic), God spoke to me & I felt like He said that the reason why there was an attack on Jaden's speech was because He was going to use Jaden's words when he got older. The enemy (satan) was trying to stop up the purpose that God had given Jaden.  I had to hold onto that word that God gave me, even when I doubted & when Jaden got the diagnosis of autism.  I had to hold onto that word when I held Jaden, crying over him as he was in another world...he would say the same phrase over & over, like a broken record with his eyes gazed over.  Jaden was in therapy (speech & occupational) for years.  We also went to war, praying for a complete healing of Jaden.  Is being "healed" of autism possible?  With God, ALL things are possible!!

Jaden is now 8 years old....he has caught up to his peers socially & in speech!  Is Jaden healed?  Yes, I believe he is.  We haven't taken him back to get re-tested (it costs a lot), but his pediatrician says he doesn't see any symptoms of autism anymore.  His speech & occupational therapists both don't see it either.  In fact, he met all of his goals & doesn't need anymore therapy!!  Also...a Mama just knows! Why Jaden?  I don't know.  The only thing I can say is that God said that he was going to use Jaden.  And I know this is true!!

Jaxon. Our lil sweet-tart!  We love this lil guys so much!  Jaxon is also speech delayed.  He has been getting speech therapy since he was 18mo.  He is 3 now.  Jaxon is a year behind in speech.  He is our "work in progress".  He is making great gains & his speech therapist believes he will be caught up to his peers in 1-2 years!  Also, when Jaxon was just a baby, he was diagnosed with neutropenia (it has to do with his white blood cells).  Guess what?  God healed him from that!  All of Jaxon's blood works come back normal now!  When Jaxon was 2, he was diagnosed with Autism.  That didn't settle right with me.  I just didn't believe it.  I wasn't in denial...but a Mama just know these things.  In a sobbing prayer, I cried out to God asking him to speak to me loudly & clearly about Jaxon.  A peace that I can't even explain came over me, "Jaxon is not autistic".  I held onto that word.  Even though I had the papers from the doctors saying he was.  A few months ago we got Jaxon re-tested (we found a free program for him)....and guess what!  Jaxon doesn't have autism.  They took the diagnosis away!  In fact, they said he was far from being autistic...he was extremely social!  And with that word, God spoke to me again.  Everyone loves Jaxon.  People are just drawn to him  I don't know if it is dimples or what, but there is something super special about him. God spoke to me that He was going to use Jaxon's personality & enthusiastic demeanor to bring people to Christ.  And I know this is true!!!

Jett.  If you have been following my blog, you already know what a rocky year he has had.  God has healed Jett from a lot (pertusis, RSV & a really bad mystery illness)....but what I can't help but cry when I talk about this...God healed Jett from meningitis!  At the hospital, when Jett was at his worst with the meningitis & we didn't know if Jett would live or die...God spoke to me, "Jett is healed".  I looked at him, with a tubes in him, him screaming in pain & a with raging fever.  Even though he didn't look healed or everything the doctors were telling me didn't line up with what God said...I held onto that word.  Jett is healed.  And he is!  Jett was cleared of everything, not suffering a single complication that comes with meningitis.  Praise God!  Guess what?  Yep...you are right.  God spoke to me again about Jett.  He was going to use him to do BIG things for His kingdom.  I don't know how...but I have a feeling that Jett will be in the ministry somehow.  All my boys, really.  With Jaden & Jaxon being speech delayed, I was really scared that Jett would be too.  God spoke to me again about this (do you see a pattern? lol), "Jett will not be speech delayed, in fact he will excel in speech"!  And I know this is true!

And this is my story.  You can believe what you want, but I know that God is the one who has healed every single one of my boys!  Nothing anyone could ever say or do could convince me otherwise.  A mama knows what she knows!!!  God doesn't speak to me a lot...but when it comes to my boys he does!  I am a mother to 3 miracles...to 3 future men that will be used by God in a BIG way!!

Edited to add:

I want to add that I am not saying that God couldn't use my boys with their conditions, not at all!  My life has been touched on many occasions by children & adults with disabilities. Since I became a mother, my life has been surrounded by special needs children.  I have a very sensitive heart for special needs children. I don't know why God has healed my boys, except for what God has spoken to me.  I believe that "Their Stories, will be His Glory"....and with those testimonies, God is going to touch & change lives.  I do not take for granted this blessing lightly.  I know how hard it is to have a child who is suffering from a condition & knowing that they will probably be this way for the rest of their lives. God is good, all the time.  In every circumstance, in every situation.

Pooh Snacks

I {love} reading the adventures of Winne the Pooh to my boys.

In honor of the book, I made some "Pooh Snacks".




It is really quite easy & YUMMY for your tummy!! 

Just take some graham crackers, spread some peanut butter on them & drizzle some honey on top of them!!

Instant Pooh Snacks!!

Freebie & Giveaway!


Happy Summer!!!  Isn't this graphic super cute?  Blog Beautiful Designs is giving it away for FREE!!  Head on over there to get your free download & see the other freebies (free blog layouts!!) you can snag!

Also, my Etsy shop, The Vintage Honey Shop, is doing a giveaway over on FACEBOOK.  Look what you could win...


A yellow rosette ring (made by me!)!!!  Details on how to enter are on our Facebook page :)

Thrill Me Thursdays

Happy Thursday!!

How is your Thursday treating you?

Well, lets get to it...here are the things that are thrilling me today:

Nivea Sun-Kissed Beautiful Legs.  I can't tan.  So I have to rely on "tan in a bottle" to do the job.  If I don't use stuff like this, my legs are so white they could blind someone!  So for the safety of all around me, I use "tan in a bottle".  I have always used the Jergen's brand and REALLY liked it.  I had a coupon for Nivea ($2 off!) and Walmart had it on sale...so I thought, "what they hey... I will give it a try".  It is a lil more "runny" than Jergens.  I think I made the mistake of putting too much on, as it looked a lil blotchy, but not that noticeable.  Next time, I will use less.  But it gave me a pretty nice tan in just two applications!  It also has a really pretty smell.  If you don't like purfumey smells, this might not be a good fit for you.  My husband could smell it as soon as I walked into the room.  I think it smells great!  Another really cool thing about this product, is that it is suppose to minimize shaving.  Not sure how it does that & if it actually works, but it can't hurt!  Who wouldn't love to shave less!  I don't know anyone who wakes up first thing in the morning  & says, "Boy, I can't wait to shave my legs today, yippee!!!"

 
Isn't THIS sunglass case super cute!!  It comes with a chain so you can carry it on your shoulder.  I don't think I would use the chain though.  I love the fabric...that bird is so super cute!  I am so into birds right now!




Cracker Barrel Coffee!!!  I can't start the day without it!  I have had a lot of different coffee out there...but this is the best.  A perfect blend of strength to it.  Not too weak, not to strong.  I normally am a flavored coffee girl, but the regular is just so good, I don't care that it doesn't have a "flavor" to it!


These eyes!!!  I know, I know...I said I wasn't gonna post anymore pics of my kids due to the weirdo that stole my pictures...but I put a big logo over his face so no one can steal it & claim that he is there kid or worse!  I got a new lens...a 50mm 1.4!!!  Love it!!  Makes a huge difference in my photography!



Sippy cup "leash".  I don't know about your kids, but I HATE it when we are in the car & one of them drops or throws a sippy cup & starts crying cause they cant get it!  I love this "leash" for the sippy cup!  You can attach it to just about anything so that they cup is always in reach!  Now you can stop playing the pick me up game!!

And that is Thrill Me Thursday!!