Stormy Skies

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

When I woke up this morning  to take the little pooper to her daycare, it was so dark out I thought maybe I set the alarm to go off too early. I pulled back the curtains and took a look outside to find one heck of storm blowing by. The Weather Channel app on my phone informed me we were under a tornado watch. So, I went back to bed! Does it make me a crazy, overprotective mom that there was no way I was taking my kid out in that mess?

The storms actually started yesterday afternoon but not before we had a chance to take a quick trip to the park. It was actually perfect weather for swinging, sliding, pinecone gathering, and photo taking (yup, still trying out that manual setting).

We'll be hanging out at home today. . . maybe spend a little time coloring at Syd's new table and chairs. Remember my mentioning that I was doing another review for CSNstores? I picked out something from their All Modern store that I thought was pretty cool for the kiddos. The nifty table and chair set is by P'Kolino and you can find it here. It's not your run of the mill table and chairs set. What I find so cool is that the table top is removable and reversible. There is a plain white side and also a chalk board side! Lift up the table top and you've got a spot to stash crayons, pencils, coloring books, puzzles, and more. Also, since the 'chairs' are actually little stools, they slide right under the table when not in use. Great for kids with teeny bedrooms. Or with moms who put way too much stuff in their rooms! The set was super easy to put together (I did it during a single episode of Olivia) and feels pretty sturdy. As before, the ordering process was quick and easy and shipping was fast! There was only one 'negative'- when I unpacked the table/chair parts there was a very strong paint smell. I just stuck everything outside over night to air out.

I do plan to sew again (in case you're wondering). My last few attempts failed miserably so nothing new to share :( You'd think sewing in a zipper would be like riding a bicycle. At least I think I've finally picked out fabrics for the clutch I'll be working on to create that pattern I talked about. Oh, and many thanks to everyone who voted! Very sweet of you :) I should also have a pattern review to share with you in the next week or two. The final product was a gift so I have to make sure it's gotten to its recipient before I post pictures. Just in case. . .

One last thing. . . I donated another camera strap cover for this giveaway/fundrasier. There are actually 3 prize bundles up for grabs with lots of cool handmade items. Each $5 donation will get you an entry. If you have a minute, go check it out!


Friday, October 22, 2010

It's just been one of *those* weeks. I had lots of big plans for blog posts, sewing for the shop, and sewing along with Jess at Craftiness is not Optional. Unfortunately, my total lack of motivation had other plans! In fact, I think a few more days of laziness are in order. But, before I go climb into bed for a movie marathon, I thought I'd stop by here and share what I did manage to do this week and a quick blogging tip. (you know, so I don't feel like a total slacker :)

I've been following along with Lil Blue Boo's 2 Weeks of Photography. Lots and lots of great info there, btw, if you haven't checked it out. There's also a photo contest going on and the photo above is my entry! It's also one of my first 'successful' attempts at shooting in manual mode. Fun stuff!

This one was definitely a contender ;) Not sure if that's supposed to be a smile or a growl though. 

So, along with playing around with my camera, I also broke down and bought a new iron. I may have mentioned it before but irons and I don't get along. Which is rather inconvenient given that I like to sew. A lot.  I've tried cheap irons and I've tried pricey ones. No luck. The cheap ones quit getting hot after a few months and the expensive ones leak water like crazy. The last two irons I had were Rowentas, both the same model (the first was exchanged for another when it started leaking). Well, Rowenta #2 started leaking as well. Water would just start pouring out of the sides and bottom of the iron. Not cool and really messy. Crazy me, I went and bought another Rowenta yesterday. A different model this time though. I call it the beast. It's ginormous. I have reeeeeally high hopes for this iron. Fingers crossed!

I was recently asked in an email how to reply to blog comments via email. It's how I reply to the lovely comments you leave here so here's how in case you're not sure how that works (these instructions are for Blogger, I haven't the slightest clue how all that works for other blogging platforms!) :

1. From your dashboard, click on Settings.

2. Next, click on Comments.

3. Scroll down until you see Comment Notification Email. Enter whatever email address you want your       comment notifications to be sent to. Make sure to hit the Save button on the bottom of the screen.

4. Now, whenever someone leaves a comment on your blog, you'll receive an email that contains the comment and you'll be able to reply to it! 

One caveat. . . .if the person who leaves the comment does NOT have an email address linked to their blog, you'll see this :  instead of their email address. You won't be able to reply to those comments via email.

If you would like bloggers to be able to reply to your comments via email, follow these steps:

1. From your dashboard, go to the left of the screen (next to your photo) and click Edit Profile.

2.Make sure the following is checked under the Privacy Sections
  •     Share My Profile
  •     Show My Email Address    

3. Under Identity, enter the email address you want to use.

4. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the page and click Save Profile.

Now fellow bloggers should be able to reply to your comments via email. If any of you have any questions or topics you think would make for a good 'blog tip', let me know! If it's anything I am familiar with, I'll share it here.

Have a great weekend!

"How'd you do that?" - Adding BIG photos to your blog posts

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A couple of quick announcements first. . . 

The Purse Week Top 10 are up! My clutch is one of the ten. Very exciting stuff! Head over to A Lemon Squeezy Home and vote your favorite.

Also, make sure to head over and check out Share the Love week at the anderson crew blog. The first few bundles are up: craft/hobby , all girl, and home / decor. Tons of cool stuff up for grabs!! The giveaway is open til Sunday, October 17th at midnight (eastern time).

A little sneak peek of some of the bundles (all this stuff could be yours!):

Ok, on to my first "blog tips" post. First, I want to say that I am no expert. Nope, not me. I just figure these things out as I go along. And sometimes I get it wrong! If you know of a better, easier, quicker way, feel free to share in the comments!

When I first started my blog, I just uploaded photos through Blogger. Unfortunately, this meant I could only choose between small, medium, and large for my image sizes. And, the large option wasn't very large. As I started finding new blogs to follow, I noticed my favorite ones had nice, large photos. Much larger than what I was able to post on my blog. That kind of bugged me so I set out to figure out how to get bigger photos on my blog. Of course, I can't remember for the life of me where I finally found what I was looking for. Basically, to get larger photos in my posts, I followed these steps:

1. when editing my photos, I would resize them fit my blog, usually 550px wide. 
*how large you can go will depend on the layout/template you are using

2. I would then upload my photos to Flickr or Photobucket.

3. One by one, I would copy the image links and paste them into the Blogger Image Uploader. I did this instead of uploading photos directly from my computer. Since the photos were hosted elsewhere, I could control what size I wanted them. 

4. Once that was done, I would have to cut and paste the image html code (in the Edit HTML tab) to the proper places within the post. For some reason, Blogger would place all the photos at the very top of the post. Grrr.

Needless to say, it was a major pain in the rear. Took too much time and eventually I ran into the problem of exceeding bandwidth on Photobucket so I had to start paying a monthly fee. Yay. Finally, thanks to the Coffeeshop Blog, I found a much better way to get larger photos on my blog! I'm pretty sure I was the last to know, so feel free to point fingers and laugh. . . I can't see you ;)

I had no idea that there was a new Blogger post editor until I read this post. NO CLUE. If you aren't using the new post editor, from your dashboard, go to Settings, then Basic and scroll down til you see Global Settings. Next to Select Post Editor, choose the Updated Editor. Once you've done that, uploading photos will be so much easier. Your photos will show up small at first, just click on the photo and then you can choose for them to show up as their original, uploaded size. Also, the photos will appear wherever you place the cursor! And you can drag and drop them if you want to rearrange things. Now, adding 20 photos to a tutorial post won't take me 5 hours :) 

Hope this makes life easier for someone! I'll try to post some more tips soon.

Purse Week!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Before I get into the fun that is Purse Week,  I want to mention that I'll be doing another review for soon! If you you're not familiar with, they have over 200 online stores that sell everything from nightstands to art supplies. Like last time, I'll be choosing something I think will be a big hit with the kiddos and maybe something you'll want to put on your Christmas shopping list :)


Ok, so on to Purse Week. . . I really should have posted about this sooner but I spent pretty much all my free time this week working on my entry. I came across the contest and A Lemon Squeezy Home late Sunday night so I knew I wouldn't have a whole lot of time to come up with something. Crazy me, I decided to whip up a pattern from scratch and it was a learning experience for sure! I've been playing around with the idea of creating a purse pattern for my shop and this was sort of a trial version. Still lots more work to be done but I'm happy with what I ended up with.

Anywho, if you are just now finding out about Purse Week, make sure to head over to A Lemon Squeezy Home for lots of purse inspired tutorials. Also, if you've sewn a purse, tote, or clutch since July 1st of this year, you can enter it! You have til midnight (MST) tonight :) To see all of the fabulous entries, head over to the Flickr pool here.

Have a great weekend!

{mish mash monday}

Monday, October 4, 2010

Everyone have a good weekend? I'm seriously loving the cooler, less humid weather. I've got all the windows open and plan to enjoy every single second of fall. The kiddo, not so much. She's missing her baby pool. The sidewalk chalk I gave her to play with just didn't hold the same appeal. Hey, there's always the bathtub, right?


Emily of the anderson crew will be hosting a fundraiser event October 11-15 for a really sweet cause.  I'll share more details as she posts them but from what I do know, there will be some awesome stuff up for grabs! Giveaways galore including a few things from my shop. In the meantime, go check out the fun, amazing, inspiring photography on her blog :)

Weekend Craftiness...

I was actually productive this weekend! I was beginning to get worried. I'd come back to my sewing room at night to get started on something, anything and would realize about an hour later I hadn't gotten anything done. Anywho, I finally got motivated to get into gear by a customer. I was asked to make a camera strap cover with 2 pockets as she wanted one for both her lens cap and also a place to stash memory cards. I added a little Velcro to the pocket to make sure the memory cards stayed put! I may add this to the tutorial. Eventually. I also managed to sew up two more straps last night for the shop.

Coming Soon. . . 

I've recently "met" a few cool chicks via comments left here or emails they've sent who are just getting started in blogging and opening Etsy shops. There is so much to learn and just today I realized how much more I still need to learn. While editing photos last night, I found out I was creating my posts here through an OLD, soon to be removed editor. I've been making things so much harder on myself and I had no idea! So, in hopes of maybe helping some of you out, I think I'll put together a post soon with things I've found to be helpful with blogging and photography Tips and tricks.. Er, something like that. Sound good?

One last thing. . . 

Team Mondo!

Proudly designed by Mlekoshi playground