I took the plunge and joined Twitter. Probably the last one to join, but I did it nontheless. I think it might take me awhile to figure it all out. Come follow me! Please? (did that sound like begging? maybe it was, a little… :) @iftheywouldnap
Over at Made and Made by Rae, there was a fabulous month-long event called Celebrate the Boy. Oh, how lovely! (Can I call a boy month lovely? Too late.) Being the boy-dominated household that we are, I love when the boy inspiration comes out of the blogging woodwork.
I didn’t really feel the push to sew like crazy for my boys, since I am boy-sewing all year long. But I did crank out a few Boy Month inspired things. My favorite was a pair of flat-front pants, based on Dana’s tutorial.
The pants are made out of a light, super soft corduroy (found at Hancock Fabrics). I just love stripes on my boys! And yes, I know it is a shock that I did NOT upcycle to make these pants!
I used a pair of well-fitting pants as a model for my pattern. I just added a little bit to the waist and the booty, since E is a cloth diaper baby.
I’ve made a lot of pants for my boys, but trying the flat-fronts made me nervous. But it was much easier than I had expected! Next time I want to try the fake fly in front. And I might even brave this button-fly tutorial from Trula Kids.
I see many more flat-front pants in my boys’ future!
Linking up to:
Well, I said it was coming, and here it is! An under the belly maternity pants tutorial!
First, you will need a pair of pants that fit you well – at least, mostly.
I picked up these jeans at a thrift store, and like the brown pants I posted about the other day, they fit perfectly, except that I couldn’t button them. Seriously, again?! That makes them perfect to make into maternity pants!
Decide where you want to cut the pants. I tried them on, then made a mark with chalk where I would want the 1 1/2 inch elastic to begin. Then I cut above that line about 1/2 inch, to allow for the seam allowance. Since these pants will sit below the belly, the front needs to dip down lower than the back. In the back, I cut just below the existing waistband.
Sew the fly together [in this picture, you see my attached waistband already, because - woops! - I forgot to do this part until later.] You can see my stitches are a slightly lighter yellow thread, on the left of the fly. It’s much easier to get the two pieces lined up when you do this before attaching the waistband.
Next, Measure tightly around your waist, under your belly. This number will be the length of your elastic and your knit. For the knit waistband, you want a very stretchy knit. Here, I upcycled the waistband of a jersey skirt I picked up at a thrift store. [The same skirt I used here and here, by the way.]
Your knit should be 2 1/4 inches wide – if you are using 1 1/2 inch elastic. If you use a wider elastic, make sure your knit can fold over the elastic, leaving ample room for seam allowance. The length of the knit is the measurement you took of your waist.
Take this knit and open it up, put the right sides together, and serge or zig-zag the ends. (Unless you are also using an upcycled waistband, you won’t have a seam down the middle like mine – just on one end.)
Pin the tube around the outside of the waistband of your pants. Serge or zig-zag the waistband onto your pants. [If you are using a sewing machine, rather than a serger, I would recommend sewing around the waistband twice, just to be sure you get a strong hold. Also, make sure you are using a durable needle if you are sewing onto denim!]
If you make any, let me know. I’d love to see them! [You can see the other pair I made here.]
Did you see any of the Meals Kids Love series, put on by Jenny over at The Southern Institute for Domestic Arts and Crafts? There are some great looking meals over there. We tried the Thai noodles and the lemon pepper talapia, which were [mostly] a hit. If you don’t include the fact that my fifteen-month-old wouldn’t even touch them. At all. [Picture me pulling out my hair, as this happens nearly every meal.... grr]
To share in the fun, Jenny is hosting a link-up, so I thought I’d hop over there with a meal that we love at our house.
Potato Leek Soup
2 sprigs rosemary
1 bunch parsley
1-2 carrots and/or 4 parsnips
6-8 large potatoes [not the huge baking potatoes]
2 cloves garlic
2 cups water
2 cups low sodium vegetable or chicken broth
2 cups milk
1 cup sour cream
salt/pepper to taste
This recipe is super easy and quick, and it can be altered to fit your family. I tend to not actually follow recipes, so I just threw this together one night, and every time I make it, it’s a bit different. So if you don’t have these exact ingredients, don’t panic – you can probably wing it and come up with something yummy.
Chop up the veggies – I don’t peel carrots, parsnips, or potatoes, just wash them. There are so many good nutrients in the skin that you don’t want to miss out on. If you’ve never worked with leeks before, cut off the ends, and then slice them lengthwise. Wash them once they are sliced, so you can get all the little dirtilies that might be hiding inside. Normally, when you cook with leeks, you just use the white end, but when making soup, you can use the entire thing. Throw all the veggies in the pot or crockpot.
Chop up the garlic cloves, rosemary, and parsley. Throw them in the pot as well.
Add all the liquid to the pot, as well as some salt/pepper.
This is my favorite broth to use. So, so yummy. I’ve made this soup with either vegetable or chicken broth, and both turn out great. If you are a dairy-free family, you can easily leave out the milk here, just add more broth and/or water.
If you are going to cook this in a slow cooker, you could cook it all day on low, or 4 hours on high. If you are doing this on the stove, it usually takes about 45 minutes. [If you are really short on time, saute the veggies for a little bit before adding the liquid, and the soup should be cooked even faster.]
After everything is all cooked, add the sour cream and blend with an immersion blender. If your kids have an aversion to anything green (because this does have a green tint to it!), adding more sour cream will cover that up. You could even skip the sour cream all together, but I like the little bit of creaminess it gives the soup. Sometimes I don’t add much at all, other times I add more.
Loved by even the pickiest of eaters!
Delicious! If your kids don’t like the texture of soup, my youngest loves to eat this mixed with quinoa (which also adds some protein).
This does make a LOT of soup – enough for our family, plus leftovers, plus some to freeze. Which I always do, because it will make a super fast meal on those “um, it’s 5:00 and I haven’t even thought about dinner yet” nights.
Yes, there comes a day when maternity pants are a must. That day has looong since arrived with this baby! It is truly amazing how quickly a third baby pops out. I have a mega problem with maternity pants – they are always too big. Even in the third trimester. Because maternity pants are made with the theory that your butt grows. It doesn’t work that way for me, so I decided to make my own and solve the problem!
I had originally purchased these pants on a thrifting expedition, long before I was pregnant. When I brought them home, though, I was so disappointed to find out that they fit perfectly, except for the fact that I couldn’t button them – yikes! So as maternity pants, they work really well.
Here you can see the panel – I like the under the belly panels. (And hello, 18 week belly! You are mighty large.)
By just cutting off the top of the pants, adding a jersey panel with 1 1/2 inch elastic, serging it onto the top of the pants, I have brand new maternity pants! Yay for looking cute (and being comfy) while being ginormous!
(With the next pair I make, I’ll do a full tutorial. I wanted to make sure these were actually wearable first!)
EDIT: The tutorial is up, and you can find it here!
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Back in my college days, I worked at the most amazing child care center. It was a dream job for me. I loved it so much that I even worked as a volunteer until they could pay me. I learned so much at that place – things that I have used in my former teacher days, as well as my current mommy days.
One of the most amazing tips I learned was about milk filters.
Now, don’t let me lose you on this one. It’s not quite as crazy as it sounds.
First of all, you find milk filters in a farming store – I found mine at Fleet Farm. If you don’t have anything like this around you, I’m sure you can find them online somewhere. And believe me, it is worth all the crazy looks you will get from the actual farmers.
You can’t tell in these photos (which were taken in the car, with my iPod), but I had lightly colored the doll to be “skin” colored. The filters take better to darker crayon colors, but you could see the skin color in person. (And you don’t have to be a super amazing artist to make these… as you can clearly see that I’m not!)
A quick, easy project that you can do with (or without) your kiddo. I do love quick and easy! Especially when the littles like it.
Maternity pants coming later this week, after I hopefully shake this nasty bug I managed to catch (boo to prego colds!)