Saturday, July 30, 2011

DYI Signal the Frog

Here is a quick little DIY Signal the frog craft. It's a fairly simple one - even if you're not all that crafty!
Visit your local Michaels Craft store and head to the isle where they have all the wood items. You will need one frog and one sheriff's badge. I recommend Michaels only because I know they have these wood cut outs, I'm not sure about other places...

You can make up to 5 frogs with one sheriff's badge, so buy more if you want! I think they were only 79 cents or something. I think the unpainted frogs were less, but my Micheals was out of them - and besides.... it's more work! If you don't have any yellow craft paint or glue, pick some of that up while you are there. You will also need to decide if you want anything for the back of your frog. You can leave it as is or add a clip, magnet, or pin to the back (I picked magnet).

First you will need to score both sides of your star sheriffs badge.

Break off over hard straight surface. A table or counter works well!

Paint the triangle/circle signal piece yellow and attach to the back of the frog (please ignore the stickers I couldn't get off!) If you have anything to glue to the back do that now too!

TaDa! How simple! A nice piece of art for the next cache you visit or cache you place.

IMO, you can basically throw a yellow antenna on a any ol' frog and call it Signal! ;-)

Doodle-E-Doo it's a Saturday Doodle

I can't leave things plain and boring. It's a problem.... an awesome problem. ;-P Have you clicked the doodle tab at the top? What are you waiting for?! I'm most proud of my college class doodles. Go have a look...

Too Much Time on my Hands
This particular doodle would have been a lot easier if I doodled it before stuffing it full. Opps! Go HERE to learn to draw a Carebear.

Anyway, I think I'm going to TRY to post a doodle a week!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I'm Going Nuts

I made these easy-peasy hex nut bracelets this evening. You can find the tutorial here. And because it isn't too specific... I used 8-32 Zinc Hex nuts and 1.2mm hemp cording.

I'm Going Nuts

After a 40% off coupon at Michaels for the cording and a relatively cheap bag of hex nuts from Lowes, this project came out relatively inexpensive. I did mine different than the tutorial and continued the braid a little further. I ended each end with a spring finding and hooked on a small clasp. Nice idea for a gift!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Peach Treats

Did anyone else visit the orchard for peaches this weekend? We've got a whole box of peaches ripening up, so I decided to make some peach treats tonight (mini fried peach pies). The recipe I used was from here. It was delicious! I even learned a new technique - cutting butter into flour (with knives, no fancy mixers here).

I was so busy making the pies I only got pictures at the end.

Peach Pies

Peach Pies

Peach Pies

The recipe has a baked version and a fried version.... I didn't try the baked, but I can tell you the fried version is DELICIOUS. The crust was so yummy flaky and tasty.

AWESOME. I'll have to save this recipe for apple season ;-)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Fabric Postcards

Over the last couple months I've sent out a few fabric postcards. I missed getting a picture of one - but I'd like to share the others with you!

Fabric Postcards Fabric Postcards
Fabric Postcards

There are 3 Happy Birthday post cards and 1 Happy Anniversary card. There are two layers of fabric sandwiching a layer of TemTex. The cut out fabric pieces are secured with some Heat n' Bond. I used to sew those pieces on, but I've decided that's just too much work! The only sewing is around the card to hold the postcard together even better!

I've painted a layer of glitter glue over the cupcake icing and on the rings for a little extra pop.


This past week I signed up for a Handmade postcard swap in the Postcrossing forums. Cross-stitch is my theme this time! The tree one was the first one - yes I know its off center... oops!

Coss Stitched Postcards

I love this dragon one. I made a couple of mistakes, but nothing the non-cross-stitcher would notice. I found the small pattern here.

Coss Stitched Postcards

I just stuck my cross-stitch design to one of those foam sheets (sticky on one side), then sewed around the edges for a little more insurance. The edges might fray, but I'm going to "cross" my fingers!

Gotta love mail art! I love sending postcards to friends & random people. Mailbox surprises are the best.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Book Review - Something Blue

ErikaJean gave to:
Something Blue (Darcy & Rachel #2)
by Emily Giffin

Book Description:

Following the smash-hit SOMETHING BORROWED comes story of betrayal, redemption, and forgiveness

Darcy Rhone has always been able to rely on a few things: Her beauty and charm.  Her fiance, Dex. Her lifelong best friend, Rachel.  She never needed anything else. Or so she thinks until Dex calls off their dream wedding and she uncovers the ultimate betrayal. Blaming everyone but herself, Darcy flees to London and attempts to re-create her glamorous life on a new continent. But to her dismay, she discovers that her tried-and-true tricks no longer apply--and that her luck has finally expired. It is only then that she can begin her journey toward redemption, forgiveness, and true love.

My Thoughts:
First of all, sorry for being on such a reading kick lately. It's been too hot to do anything outside so I've pretty much been working... and reading like crazy when I'm not!

I read the first book of this series and liked it.... but I liked this one much better! I do recommend reading Something Borrowed first though. Great series - Now want to go see the movie "Something Borrowed" (The first book) here's the Trailer.... can you believe our movie theater is only 5 bucks if you go before noon!?

Erikajean Jean's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)Rating System
= Didn't Like It
=It Was OK
= I Liked It
= I Really Liked It
= It Was Amazing

Saturday, July 16, 2011


Meet my older sister,


You'll have to pardon her wave, this one just comes naturally.

Anyway, I saw this photo as a great way to waste some time and energy, enjoy!

Can you believe, she had to ask me what was in her hand. She had no clue.

She could actually probably lift weights while hang gliding. She's one tough SOB.

The poor guy behind her. Now he's the one without a clue.

This one just cracks me up because this is not my sister at all! I mean, this is my sister - but not her personality!

Love you sis. I wish I had the balls (and money) to do something this crazy! Now, I must pay my dues for her allowing me to post these pictures... GO VISIT HER PHOTOSTREAM and Comment on some of her amazing shots!!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Book Review - The Girl in the Green Raincoat

gave 3 of 5 stars to: 
The Girl in the Green Raincoat (Tess Monaghan #11)
by Laura Lippman

Book Description:
In the third trimester of her pregnancy, Baltimore private investigator Tess Monaghan is under doctor's orders to remain immobile. Bored and restless, reduced to watching the world go by outside her window, she takes small comfort in the mundane events she observes . . . like the young woman in a green raincoat who walks her dog at the same time every day. Then one day the dog is running free and its owner is nowhere to be seen. Certain that something is terribly wrong, and incapable of leaving well enough alone, Tess is determined to get to the bottom of the dog walker's abrupt disappearance, even if she must do so from her own bedroom. But her inquisitiveness is about to fling open a dangerous Pandora's box of past crimes and troubling deaths . . . and she's not only putting her own life in jeopardy but also her unborn child's. 

Previously serialized in the New York Times, and now published in book form for the very first time, The Girl in the Green Raincoat is a masterful Hitchcockian thriller from one of the very best in the business: multiple award-winner Laura Lippman. 

My Thoughts:
I didn't realize this was part of a series, but in the end I don't think it really mattered. This was a good short mystery with a nice twist at the end. I kind of feel like the end was wrapped up rather quickly - but still pretty decent.

Erikajean Jean's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)Rating System
= Didn't Like It
=It Was OK
= I Liked It
= I Really Liked It
= It Was Amazing

WW- Explained

I hope you enjoyed yesterday's Wordless Wednesday! Something a little different is always nice in my opinion. I try my best to keep the WW posts actually wordless... that's the point right?

Here is a little ErikaJean WW Hint: Sometimes the photo is explained a little more or a title is given if you hover over the photo. Sometimes the photo/video will link to something else. This blog is like a box of chocolates - ya never know what you're gonna get!

Anyway - I enjoyed the making the stop motion, I haven't done one in a while! You might see more popping up here and there ;-)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Book Review - Bossypants

Erikajean Jean gave I Liked It to:
by Tina Fey

Book Description:
Before Liz Lemon, before "Weekend Update," before "Sarah Palin," Tina Fey was just a young girl with a dream: a recurring stress dream that she was being chased through a local airport by her middle-school gym teacher. She also had a dream that one day she would be a comedian on TV.

She has seen both these dreams come true.

At last, Tina Fey's story can be told. From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately half-hearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon -- from the beginning of this paragraph to this final sentence.

Tina Fey reveals all, and proves what we've all suspected: you're no one until someone calls you bossy.

(Includes Special, Never-Before-Solicited Opinions on Breastfeeding, Princesses, Photoshop, the Electoral Process, and Italian Rum Cake!)

My Thoughts:
I liked this book; very funny, entertaining and a good reminder to just "be yourself." There is definitely a little "girl power" aspect to this book - though I'm sure Tina Fey would want me to say it is empowering period - no matter who decides to pick up this book. She points out a lot in the book about her struggles and some of the injustices in the comedy and TV world and how she pushed through them and proved a few people wrong along the way. The book was pretty funny, but there was no laughing out loud for me. Just a lot of "ha!' moments.

This book didn't receive more than 3 stars from me because of how it was laid out. I'm not a big fan of lists and how-to points, even if they are a bit humorous. I don't care to read bits of SNL script, charts and I don't really need pictures in my books :-P Some of the references were lost on me, but overall I "got" most of it... even though I don't watch 30 rock (she doesn't spend but a couple chapters on it) and I only watch SNL when I'm interested in who is hosting!

Over all though, good book. If your a fan of Tina Fey, I'm sure you'd like it! It's a quick read and you can definitely tell Tine Fey wrote it. You can hear hear when your reading it.

Erikajean Jean's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)
Rating System
= Didn't Like It
=It Was OK
= I Liked It
= I Really Liked It
= It Was Amazing

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Birthday America

America's Birthday Candle - The Sparkler

America's Birthday Candle - The Sparkler

I don't think they make them like they used to when I was a kid. They now take forever to light, burn faster, don't make as much of a hissing sound and you can't feel the sparks as much.... but I still love 'em. To me, they'll never get old.

And yes, I painted my self some patriotic nails! I had a little time on my hands, pun intended.

I think I'm skipping festivities for the 4th, it's just too darn H O T and crowds don't seem too appealing to me this evening. They don't do fireworks here in AZ like they did in OH. A lot of the firework shows around town are cancelled because of the fire danger. Our local town is still putting on a show - but it just seems like a waste of time for a small firework show. :-/

How did you, or how are you going to celebrate the 4th?

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Tote Bage Tutorial - With Pockets!

I told you there would be more tote bags in my future! Hopefully, there will be some in yours as well.... Just follow the [long]tutorial.


They're reversible!


I started making these tote bags after making a more simple version over at Skip to my Lou. You will see at the end of the tutorial I toss you back over to her post to finish your bag :-) I reccomend her tutorial for soemthing simple.. but follow mine if you want to go the extra mile and add some handy pockets!

I used decorator remnants for the outside of my bag (the stripes in this tutorial) and regular fabric for the lining and insides of pockets (the red and yellow in this tutorial).

Cut two pieces of fabric on the fold. I chose to turn my fabric pattern for a funkier tote - but this is not necessary. You can use my measurements or change them if you want a smaller/larger bag. However, keep the widths the same and A needs to be shorter than B by a few inches.


Cut out same sized lining piece for both A and B. you can measure it all out again, but I simply lay the fabric over it, pin it down and then cut it out.


Take piece A and lining piece A, unfold them and put them right sides together. Pin the short ends.


Sew each short end using a 5/8in seam allowance.

Press seams. This is the way I do it...



Notice in the picture above that I let piece A outshine the lining piece A by just a tiny bit. This makes it nice and neat so there is no lining flopping out of your bag.

Once both ends are pressed, sew each side with a 1/4 seam allowance.


Lay piece B right side up. Center piece A (lining facing down and outside facing you)... put a couple of pins in to secure piece a in place. Now it's time to measure out your pockets. This is how I laid out mine. The blue lines are where I sewed. I marked them with a washable sewing pen before sewing. Mark your lines, pin and then sew following the arrows.


Time to make and add the pockets to lining piece B (the inside of your bag). Measure out the size of pocket you would like. Mine is 6x8in and I used the outside stripped fabric. Cut out a lining piece for the pocket as well. Place pieces right sides together and sew one long side with a 5/8in seam allowance. press seam with right sides together and sew 1/4 from the edge (much like you did a few steps above but only on one side).


Trim lining if needed. I need to. fold in and iron in sides and bottom of pocket.


Pin to lining piece B. and stitch.


Lets prep that strap! I'm only doing one on this bag, but you could do two if you wanted. I start with a 6.5x24in. Fold it in half long ways and then fold edges into the center. Iron and stitch. You may want to pin yours, but I didn't really need to. Set strap aside when finished.

strap IMG_4778

Take piece AB with all your outer pockets and Lining B fold them over right sides together. Pin and stitch up the sides with a 5/8 seam allowance. I started at the folded end and sewed down to avoid wrinkles.


Now take each piece and fold in the bottom corners (by the fold) it's kind of hard to explain, so I hope you can understand from the picture! This gives the bag a little more structure and bottom.


Mark a line 1.75in from the corners in and sew.

Now this is where I got lazy and stopped taking pictures! I was to excited about heading out to geocache I think ;-) but it's pretty easy.... Head over to Skip to my Lou and start at step 5. She does hers with two straps, I only did one so I placed my strap on each side. Also leave a 4-5in opening becuase you will need more space to flip the bag right side out! Be sure to thank her for the tutorial and getting me (and possibly yourself) for getting hooked!