Saturday, June 30, 2012
Today I'm sharing my very first printable download! I made this 4th of July bunting for a crafty party I threw with my bloggy friend Stacy of Kids Stuff World. I'm eager to share all the great party photos, but thought I'd whip up this free printable in time for y'all to use it for your own 4th of July celebrations!
The download comes complete with instructions, photos, and of course the printable, and you can download it here: 4th of July Bunting. I'd love to see your photos if you make your own, you can even share them in the Maker Mama Flickr group!
Do you have any big plans for the 4th of July? Have a great rest of the weekend!
Monday, June 25, 2012
Have you always wished you could learn how to sew, knit, scrapbook, or even just figure out how to use that dusty old sewing machine of yours? Are you swamped with work or kids and don't know how you'll ever find the time? Well, my friends, today you're in luck!
If you haven't already heard, Craftsy is a new online classroom for crafters (and wannabe crafters). They offer paid online video classes, workshops, patterns, and a project gallery to see what everyone else has been learning to make. It's free to sign up and you definitely get your money's worth in the classes. They offer courses in sewing, knitting, crocheting, home decor, paper crafts, and much more.
I recently had the opportunity to take a peek at Christine Hayes' Sassy Librarian Blouse course and was blown away by the detailed instructions--I even picked up a few pro tips and tricks that I'd never heard before.
There are tons of free online videos produced by some experienced and not-so-experienced crafters out there, but Craftsy has taken online learning above and beyond with the quality of both the videos and their instruction. The courses are broken up into small chunks, with videos for each part of the project, and there's a forum for each class so you can ask the instructor questions and get actual feedback and help.
And what makes it even better is that you can access the class videos anytime day or night, at your own convenience, for forever! No time limits, just you learning how to make something awesome at your own pace--no more excuses for not getting crafty!
So are you pumped and excited? How about a free course to get you going?
Craftsy has generously offered a free online course to three Maker Mama readers! To enter, all you have to do is
What Craftsy course do you think you'd enjoy the most? Have you already taken one? I'd love to hear in the comments below!
And if you haven't already, hop on over and like Maker Mama on Facebook--you don't want to miss any future giveaway announcements!
Saturday, June 23, 2012
This week I was witness to...
My oldest son desperately counting his pennies (they were burning quite a big hole in his pocket)...
Amelia reveling in the magic of her toes--that girl will not keep her shoes on in the car!
Our family coming together to talk about our values and making them more visible in our home (I promise to share more photos--I'm just waiting to hang it up)...
The bond these little sisters share in our little bedtime rituals--no matter how they got along during the day...
A beautiful collection of treasures in the home of a woman I never met, and was honored to give them a new home (I'll share more about my estate sale finds later, too)...
The boys learning to work together despite the crazy rules of a game like Trouble; the Star Wars version, of course...
The wigglyness of kids at a T-ball game. It is hard to sit still for so long...
Resourcefulness in action as we perused the neighborhood for some curbside finds...
And peace in action when a framed set of letterpress letters was knocked over and needed some rearranging--life is all about how you react when the pieces fall apart!
Some days--and even weeks--it's hard to see past the whirlwind of life spinning around me. There are so many things that require my constant attention that it can definitely be overwhelming and hard to see the bigger picture at times.
When it feels like the house will always be a mess and I'll never be able to pay quite enough attention to the task at hand--whether it's starting the day off on the right foot, making time for the kids, trying to keep up with my crafty endeavors--there are always 10 things going on in my mind at a time.
And that can definitely make it hard to catch my breath and figure out if we're headed in the right direction at times.
That's why I've enjoyed sitting down with you all each week and share some of my favorite moments in pictures. Not to paint a picture of a perfect life, but to embrace and appreciate the abundance of it all.
What small moments helped you to see the abundance in your life this week? How do you remind yourself to breathe amidst the chaos?
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
As all of you know, I'm a thrift store junkie. And I'm a frugal, green-lovin' mama. My husband gets one role of paper towels each year for Christmas, and I buy used whenever I can. But there are some things even I won't buy from the thrift store.
Sunday, June 17, 2012
This last week was filled-to-the-brim with Vacation Bible School, sock kitty making, and construction on the house. Here's the break down:
The kids all participated in VBS this week and I worked as a volunteer--it was a full five days but the kids had a blast (and I was pooped by the end).
During the mad dash of our days I often find Amelia settled in the middle of my path quietly looking at books--what a great reminder to stop and take life in!
Chris tore down some old doors and windows with my grandpa in preparation for some new (old) windows Chris is putting in along my craft wall (I have a craft wall, not a room, if you ever wondered).
I finally finished up my sock kitties for the local consignment store they're going to--I'll share more details about that soon!
The phrase during VBS this week was to Trust God (I know the picture looks like it says 'Trust Goo')--no matter what happens, how you feel, or what others do--something I know I need reminding of!
Chris' tools were stationed outside during all the construction and the kids loved playing with them every chance they could--the boys even had measuring tape races (who knew that was possible?).
I also had the honor of hanging out with a local MOPS group and talking about my crafty life while making a fun craft of our own.
Saturday night we went to the wedding of another firefighter couple we know (my mom watched the boys and my friend Emily watched the girls); it's always nice celebrating a new marriage--and having a night out!
And today we celebrated Father's Day at church and with friends. We made it out to San Pedro Springs and Tycoon Flats for dinner--overall a great day.
I'm feeling pretty pooped as we start a new week, but hopefully things will slow down a little and I'll catch my breath!
How about you? Any special Father's Day celebrations or summer vacations happening on your side of the screen? Hope this week is a great one!
Sunday, June 10, 2012
Skyler's official last day of school was last Wednesday and we've kicked it into high gear for summer!
The temperatures are rising down here in South Texas and we're already looking for ways to cool off (not looking forward to the heat in August).
We took advantage of a free day and went to see Knufflebunny at the Magik Theatre (even ran into a friend and played at the park afterwards).
Summer is synonymous with baseball at our house. We've already had two practices and a game--Amelia and I keep each other company while daddy helps coach and the other three play.
I took some time out for a little thrifting, and wrote a post on the five things you should always buy from the thrift store (there are some heated debates going on in the comments over there!).
And here's a sweet little apron I found on my thrifty excursion (uh-oh my vintage aprons are turning into another collection!).
We took a day-trip to Houston to visit Chris' beloved grandparents. The kids love their time with them, and we were glad to see them again.
I gave Skyler a word search book and he's just been devouring it! I loved word searches at his age and it's fun to see him get so into them, too (and sharing all my secret tips!).
Saturday I was blessed to attend the Texas Blog Chat at the amazing home of Lisa Pennington (of The Pennington Point). Not only was the conference amazing (I'm already seeing results from some of the things I learned!) but Lisa's home and family were completely inspiring. If you want to see what I mean, just check out her blog, or her Pennington Pinterest board--she's a talented home decorator and an outstanding mother of 9!
And just as I was heading home Saturday night, I happened across the grand opening of a new local vintage shop, The Collective, on S. St. Mary's (sorry I don't have a site to link to). I popped in for just a minute and met the owner who turns out to be an old college classmate of mine--can't wait to go back again!
How about you? Is your summer spinning already? Or are you kicking back and relaxing in the sun? Hope you all have a great week!
Friday, June 8, 2012
When there's something we need here at the Maker Mama house--that we can't figure out how to make-shift or do without--my first stop is always the thrift store.
Just today I was out hunting for baseball gear for two of my kids and I came home with two pairs of cleats, a pink baseball glove, and a like-new pair of grey baseball pants--all for under $20! Brand new it would have easily cost at least twice as much.
So if you aren't already a thrift-store addict like me, here are 5 things you should be buying at the thrift store instead of big box retailers. Trust me, you'll be thrilled at what you can find!
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Hello all you thrift-store lovers! Mary and I went on another thrifting excursion (because we had so much fun last time). I found some really great things you won't want to miss! You can find the full post over at Mary's Spare Parts blog.
Made any awesome thrifty finds lately?
Monday, June 4, 2012
...I started sharing my daily makings over on the Maker Mama Facebook page...
...I cleaned out my very messy craft cabinet (there's still more on my table though)...
...I started on a new rag rug (crocheted instead of braided this time)...
...Happened to make it to the last Learn and Play session at our local library with the girls (it's a great program if you're in S.A.)...
...Also stopped by the annual Friends of the Library Book Sale (and came home with more books to find a place for)...
...Picked up some new shoes for the kids at the thrift store--$3 for cute kiddo Converse? Yes please!
...Whipped up a summer receiving blanket for a friend expecting a baby boy...
...Made chalkboard vases for the boys' teachers (it was fun figuring out how to transport them in the car)...
...And enjoyed a yummy lunch with the Foodie Mamas at Sustenio's over the weekend.
This is just a snippet of the chaos that was last week--what did last week bring for you?
And lastly, our giveaway winner for the new Nields album! I'm bummed more people didn't enter (I guess it's not really a music blog, huh?) but even better for the winner:
Coleen Pence, you're our winner! Thanks for entering! Send me your mailing address to makermama[at]gmail[dot]com and I'll have them send your CD right away!