Now that we've flipped the calendar into March are you starting to think about doing a wee bit of decorating for St. Patrick's Day?
Being fond of rainbows and ladybugs I love to include them in my holiday decorating. I don't go crazy, just a few things displayed in our living room/dining room for us to enjoy.
A while back I picked up a metre of cotton shamrock fabric at the Thrift Store for $2. After a quick visit to my Mom's fabric stash (thanks Mom!) for another metre of backing fabric, I was able to make these simple placemats to subtly suggest the shamrock theme.
Here's what I did:
- Cut 8 rectangles of fabric 18"x14" (4 for the front, 4 for the back)
- With right sides together, sew a 1/4" seam around the edge leaving a 4" opening.
- Turn right side out and press with an iron so the corners are square.
- Sew a stitch 1/8" from the edge of the placemat all the way around to close the seam.
- You may have noticed that I didn't use any batting inside my placemats. You could easily add it to yours but we actually like that they are thinner than some of our store bought mats.
I was left with a small pile of scraps so because I also wanted a table runner for the dining room sidetable I decided to step outside of my creative comfort zone and try ... gulp ....
q u i l t i n g !
(my Mom, the expert quilter, is smiling right now!)
So before I chickened out, I cut the scraps into 3" squares and sewed them together to make two long strips. I then sewed the two strips to the edge of a long piece I had leftover from the placemat backing. Once again I didn't use any batting so using the same technique for the placemats I sewed on the backing fabric and my table was ready to decorate!
I have been on a bit of a quinoa kick lately so last night I made up our favourite sushi using quinoa instead of rice. If you haven't already tried quinoa, I highly recommend it as it is packed with vitamins, minerals, fibre and is a complete protein. Rice seriously pales in comparison but then I must confess to being bias as I'm allergic to rice!
Ingredients: (for 4 servings)
4 nori sheets (makes 8 pieces per sheet)
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
Braggs or regular soy sauce (wheat free if celiac)
Rinse measured quinoa in a strainer. Bring 1 cup of quinoa to a boil in 2 cups of water and then let simmer for about 15 mins. (yes it even cooks quickly!) Slice cucumber into long strips Cut avocado lengthwise into strips.
Place 1 sheet of nori onto sushi mat with the rough side up. Spread about half a cup of cooked quinoa onto the bottom third of the nori sheet. Top with a row of cucumber and avocado. Roll sheet away from you up the mat to form a cyclinder. Wet the top strip of seaweed slightly and seal closed. Roll the sushi mat around the cylinder and press tightly.
Unwrap the sushi and with a dampened serrated knife cut into bite sized pieces. Serve with a small dish of soy sauce to dip in. Feel good about all of the extra superfood ingredients you are getting in this simple little snack! ~ joey ~
Have you been thinking about doing a Spring clean/purge or re-evaluating your growing child's space? Then I invite you to join me at Playful Learning today. One thing I learned from our recent 'downsizing' project is that sometimes a change like this can stir up some emotions you might not expect...!
~ joey ~
I have been nurturing a long lost love .......of drawing! Drawing zentangles to be precise, which are a bit like doodles but different. I wrote a post about Mama's doing something for themselves here when I first tried "tangling" last year and how the process has a relaxing effect on the mind and body. Like many things I start, however, I haven't manage to finish the entirebook/course yet but I have continued to learn more about the huge following this creative outlet has.
I think it is a style of art that you should research first to decide exactly how you are going to approach it and what you hope to get from it. Are you going to follow all of the rules to the letter? Or go with a more loose approach? (my personal choice!) Are you going to do it strictly to learn new drawing techniques? Or are you going to do it to relax? Drawing for me is mostly about two things: the challenge of trying something new but also about producing something that makes me happy and is nice to look at.
I will be writing more about zentangles in the near future but for now I want to (hopefully) inspire you with some of the fun things you can draw with zentangle techniques and tools.
I have been filling my Zentangle and Drawing Pinterest boards with ideas that catch my eye or new techniques that I want to try. I also recommend the tanglepatterns.com website which is full of really neat patterns and instructions.
If you "tangle" please share your links and Pinterest boards in the comments, I'd love to see what inspires you!
I am in "downsizing mode" at the moment. The 3 R's around here right now are Reassess, Recycle and Rearrange!
For this reason there has been very little crafting happening lately as somehow making MORE seems... counterproductive?!
But I have a strong drive to be creative in some form or another so I have been focusing on organized storage and small simple seasonal displays. Here's what I mean...
I have introduced more effective storage pieces, rethought our furniture and moved it to more appropriate rooms, organized supplies so that they are easier to access, grouped similar toys neatly with others and scattered hints of the holiday season keeping it calm and subtle.
So to answer my own question I believe the answer is Yes! you can satisfy the creative urge without crafting but I think in my case, it's not going to become a long term thing! ;o)
I would also like to say how honoured I am that so many of you have continued to visit during my "unintentional blogging break".
I am eager to see what creative things you have been up to. Please leave a comment/link or send me an email so we can catch up!