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1  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / Our Spiraling Home Project - From Deck to Addition on: December 18, 2014 07:12:43 PM
A little over a year ago, the hubby and I started a project to put a covered deck onto the back of our home. Like so many projects, it spiraled a bit out of control. What started as a deck turned into a full blown home addition. The process was stressful and exhausting at times but as we've FINALLY been able to enjoy the space, we know it was all worth it! We love our new deck Smiley.

Other than the decision making, I can't take any credit for this work. We had a great contractor that did all of the hard parts. If we had attempted to participate in any of the construction work, this project wouldn't have made it past the whole-in-the-ground phase Smiley.

Deciding the paint colors (particularly what to do with my favorite part of the room, the ceiling) was so hard!! We actually ended up painting it a different color to begin with and redoing the whole thing Smiley.

And here are some of the before and in-progress pictures! Gosh, I almost forgot what a mess this was!! Cheesy

2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / This Year's Elf Workshop on: December 14, 2014 04:04:06 PM
Every December I host a holiday craft party with my girlfriends. We eat and drink and craft and laugh all day long and into the wee hours of the morning Smiley. It's a lot of work but we have so much fun!

This year we did 5 different crafts - most of which we'll give out as gifts to family and coworkers. Each person takes home ~5 of each project!

We made microwaveable rice warmers. Before the party, I sewed 5"x5" charm squares together. At the party, we turned them inside out, pushed out the corners, filled them rice and then zipped the open seam with the sewing machine.

I altered printable labels (that I can't seem to find a link to now Sad) and we cut them out during the party and attached them to the finished warmers with ribbon. 

We also did a sticky simple syrup project Smiley. We made cinnamon and orange infused syrups. I printed labels from this link before-hand and we cut them at the party and attached them to the bottles with black and white ribbon.

I just love bottle brush trees and saw a cute decoration/ornament idea on Alpha Stamps that I knew would be fun to do at the party! I had all the supplies on hand and we made a big mess cutting and glueing and glittering our own versions Smiley.

We assembled tub teas using the recipe I found, here. They smell so good and I actually used one in my bath this morning Smiley. I had all the ingredients and we mixed them together, filled the tea bags and cut out the labels. They were so easy that we were able to make a TON of them.

I forgot to get pictures of the last project we did Sad! I made a couple batches of peppermint bark the day before and we cut them and wrapped them up in parchment bags with cute labels.

I made a big batch of soup and a salad that we snacked on all day. Everyone brought really tasty appetizers and drinks that kept us full (and a little buzzed) from 1pm to 1am!! Cheesy

I'm only now finishing the last of the dishes but I can hardly wait to do it all again next year!

3  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Entrechat - Seamless Baby Sweater on: November 18, 2014 06:07:44 PM
Our neighbor is having a baby girl this winter which gave me the perfect excuse to knit an itty bitty sweater!

This is a simple (and seamless!!) pattern called Entrechat. I used Malabrigo worsted in the Polar Morn colorway. I stitched the newborn size because the tinier the better Smiley!!

I'm excited to see the little one in it in a just a few more months!!
4  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Kitchen Goodies! on: November 01, 2014 08:26:02 AM
I made this little set of kitchen goodies for Craftster chef extraordinaire, MareMare! I know she's a great cook because I've been lucky enough to enjoy her food before Smiley.

The set includes a meal planning journal, a pot holder and a dish drying mat. A bit of a random collection but hopefully useful, none the less!

I fell in LOVE with the linen kitchen-themed fabric! I have about half a yard left and am plotting how to use it Smiley

Happy cooking!!
5  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Grocery Bag Sloppy Journal on: September 30, 2014 09:38:04 AM
I've always been interested in trying book binding and finally took the leap with this project! I was inspired by this tutorial and my awesome IYP swap partner.

This required a whole stack of grocery bags which I've been hoarding under the sink for months! To reduce the folds and get the crinkled look, I soaked the cut pages in water, squeezed them into a ball and then hung them to dry outside. Once dry, I ironed them flat before folding them into the book signatures.

There are a lot of pages that are plain and can be used for writing or art journaling or scrapbooking or whatever! But I like the pages that have little tattoos that show where they came from Smiley.

Coptic stitch was new to me. I was a bit messy in my execution of it but I think it ended up fitting the sloppy look of the journal so let's just say I meant it to be that way Smiley.

I embellished the cover with cheese cloth, buttons and linen that I stamped with simple carved house stamps I made a while back.

I had so much making this and I'm filled with other sloppy book ideas!!
6  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Kiss. Love. Laugh. Craft. on: September 29, 2014 08:31:08 PM
I made this tote bag for my splendid partner in the most recent IYP swap, petskin. I always have an extra great time crafting with her since we have similar tastes. If I had more patience for cross-stitching, this is probably something I would have made for both of us! As it was, I only had the crafty fortitude to finish these 4 words Smiley.

I turned the completed piece into a project tote bag. I went a little crazy with the bright fabrics but figured it would be fun to carry in the darker fall and winter months when we all need a splash of color!

The pattern is from SatsumaStreet on Etsy. There are so many happy designs in her shop!!

This project (combined with my great swap partner Smiley) really helped me get my crafty mojo back after a challenging summer. Seeing these words was a good reminder of my four favorite things... kissing, loving, laughing and crafting! What more does anyone need??
7   / IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / First Half 2014 - Featured Projects! on: July 06, 2014 08:42:43 AM
Congratulations to the talented artists responsible for our latest round of featured Image Reproduction projects!! Thanks to everyone who contributed a project on these boards in recent months. Keep it up!!

Tenniel's Alice in Wonderland Lino Cut and Print
by rockmygypsysoul

You Remind Me of the Babe by lindyv321

Bugs Bones Wings and Things - Emulsion Printing by sheepBlue

Happy Sweatshirt for Dad by suereal

Don't forget to show some love to your favorite projects across Craftster by hitting the "This ROCKS!" button!
8   / MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Quarterly Featured Projects - Q2!! on: July 06, 2014 08:24:46 AM
Congratulations to the latest round of Miscellaneous featured projects and artists! Thanks for contributing such inspiring work this quarter! Keep it up Smiley.

Bunny Boy with Balloon by pottermouth

Evil Dead Altered Tin by Knickertwist

House in a Shoe by Alittlemusthave

Dragon Book and Game of Thrones Pegsl by Cryssoleil

Mini Altered Tin: Virgin Mary Shrine by rackycoo

AARG! Almost Paradise Altered Spool by alwaysinmyroom

Keep hitting that "THIS ROCKS!" button to tell us the projects that you love!
9  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Baked Eggs in Zucchini Nest on: June 21, 2014 08:56:38 AM
There is a great breakfast place a few blocks from our house that serves the best baked eggs! It's so good, in fact, that the wait is upwards of an hour on the weekends. I crave their yummy dishes but, aint nobody got time for that! I'm also currently OBSESSED with my veggie spiralizer. This dish is the result of both factors.

It takes less than 5 minutes to put together and doesn't require many ingredients. Oh, and it tastes good Smiley.

- eggs
- zucchini
- marinara sauce
- crumbly cheese (feta, goat... whatever)
- heavy cream
- salt & pepper
- green onions or chives (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Grease up a ramekin and set aside.

Spiralize a zucchini (or you can just slice it) and make a little nest in your ramekin.

Crack in 2 eggs and add a couple of big spoonfuls of marinara sauce.

Add a splash of heavy cream and sprinkle with cheese. Hit it with some salt and pepper and pop it in the oven!

Bake for 15 minutes. If you don't like runny yolks, give it more like 20 minutes. If you want to be fancy, add some green onions or chives and enjoy (after it cools down Smiley!

10  GLASS CRAFTS / Glass Crafts: Completed Projects / My First Mosaic - Kitchen Trivet on: May 24, 2014 09:00:17 PM
I've always admired the beautiful mosaics I've seen on Craftster and around the web but always felt like it was a craft out of reach because of all of the fancy supplies and steps it takes to make them.

Fortunately, I found an awesome place in our neighborhood, Seattle Mosaic Arts, that offers classes for newbies. A friend and I took one of their intro classes recently and this is the result!

This is a trivet but you could also do wall hangings or garden stones. There were endless jars of beautiful glass to choose from and we didn't have to do any of the messy work! We created the design on contact paper and then the studio did the grouting (in our choice of colors) for us.

It's, by no means, perfect but I had such a great time making it and I think it turned out kinda pretty. I can't wait to go back to apply what I learned to another project. I need another craft hobby like I need a hole in my head but this was just too fun not to do again!

Thanks for checking it out!
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