Sunday, October 23, 2011

Rapunzel and Jazmin wigs

Holy Cow.... can you believe it, I'm actually posting on my blog! I'm such a blog flake. I think I have commitment issues... I can never stick with anything for to long. Except J I guess... that's a good thing. I really like him, I think I'll keep him. :)

And yes, I realize it's October and my blog still say "I <3 Spring", but I don't have time to change my background right now so it will just have to be okay. Sorry.... but it very possible that I won't blog again until next spring, which would make changing my background pointless right now. :)

Okay, anyways... on to the topic at hand! The Rapunzel and Jazmin wigs. Okay so the pictures are not that great as far as blogging goes because I wasn't planning on blogging this, but I have had a bunch of people ask me how I made them, so I have decided to just go ahead and blog it.



Okay, so these next few pictures are definately not of the actual making of the wigs, but I didn't plan on blogging this, so I didn't take detailed pictures. I had to use some different yarn to take pics of stuff I needed to explain to you.

Okay, start out by figuring out how long you need your wig to be. Since I wanted the wig to go around Little Miss's head before trailing down her back, I measured around her head and then down to her feet. Then I added 2 feet on to the end because I was going to braid it and that would shorten the length of the wig. It was absolutely IMPERATIVE to Little Miss that the the wig touched the floor, so I made sure it would be long enough.

Then, I found something that was about the length of the wig, to wrap the yarn around. For me it was my kitchen table. For the Rapunzel wig I wrapped yarn around the table length wise. When you start, you need to tie the yarn first at one end, like the picture shown above.


Then, you just start wrapping your yarn around the table, or whatever it is that you found to wrap your yarn around. When I was a kid, my mom made me this huge braid for "Fairy Princess Hair" and she used the back of our couch to wrap the yarn around. Anything will work. So, wrap the yarn around until you have used up all of your yarn. For the Rapunzel wig I used 2 skeins of yarn that were 7oz each. The color was Pale Yellow.


Once you have wrapped all of your yarn around the table, you need to get a little piece of the same color of yarn and tie it around the whole bunch of yarn, pull as tight as you can and knot it. Make sure to tie at the opposite end of the one that you started out with.


Then, go to the other end, and cut the yarn. The reason you need to cut the end you started out with, is that you can cut the knot off at the end that you made to keep your yarn hooked together while you wrapped it around the table. Does that make any sense???


This is what you should end up with. It will look almost like a part in the middle of your wig.


Then, I took some ribbon, the same length of the wig, and threaded it though the tie and pulled it through until it was the same length as the wig on both sides.


That is an overwhelming amount of yarn! :)


Okay, so.... I messed up a little bit on the wig! (no big surprise to anyone that knows me). This is where I went a little wrong. I proceded to make J hold the hair along the tie line, and I got to work on braiding this ginormous braid. But.... what YOU need to do first is start at the tie line and take one side and start braiding it, and then braid the other side, so there is 2 braids coming out of the top of the big braid because you will need the 2 smaller braids to go around your girls head like a crown. Keep braiding them until they fit snugly around your child's head, and then take a piece of ribbon, and tie the 2 braids together where they meet at the back of the child's head. Then, you take all of the yarn that is now combined and start making that the big braid that will trail down to the floor.


Here is the braid close up. It was a lot easier to braid than I thought it would be. I did have to keep taking the ribbons and making sure they were on top of the yarn, and I also had to keep running my hands through the yarn and brushing it with my fingers to keep it from making loops in the wig. But the braiding went really fast, and I was pleasantly surprised.


Okay, so if you are doing it the right way, then you won't need to do this. Since I did not do my 2 little braids at the top first, I had to hold the big braid up to Little Miss and then tie the braid off at the top where we wanted to have the 2 little braids connect to the big braid. Why do I always have to make things so complicated!?!?! These instructions are confusing even me! :) I'm sorry!


Then, I had to cut the braid where it was tied together at the top. Which you won't need to do, but I had to get my 2 little braids braided, and I didn't want to start the whole thing all over.


Once cut, braid each side into a smaller braid, making 2 smaller braids. You will have to braid this one tighter than the bigger braid, so just make sure to start your braid out as tight as you can get it. The tighter braids will help the wig stay tight against your child's head, and stay on all night.


Okay, this is the part that I was less than happy with, but there was nothing to really do about it. We ended up having to kinda smash our 2 ends together and tie them together so that we could make a crown out of both braids. We just tied them together as tight as we could, and then I trimmed down some of the "Pom-Pom" edges as I called them. Then I glued some flowers in front of it, so that you can't really see it. Most people won't notice, but I do and it bugs me a little bit. Little Miss doesn't care, and is just in heaven having "real Rapunzel hair". I do think that doing the wig this way will work if your child has long hair and can pull it up into a bun on the top of her head and then you can wrap the 2 braids around it and then tie each braid end at the spot where the big braid starts. That will hide the ends of the braid really well. But Little Miss has short hair, so that wasn't an option for us.


Then I just got some fake flowers and hot glued them on. I also bought spray glitter so spray on the wig, but I haven't done that yet. I am waiting until the last minute so that I can reduce the amount of random glitter that will be all over my house.
So, that is the Rapunzel wig, it was a lot easier than I thought it would be. It only took me maybe 2 hours.

Now, on to the Jazmin wig, which was a million times easier than the crazy easy Rapunzel wig.


Okay, you start out the same as the Rapunzel wig. I ended up using my table for the Jazmin wig as well, but we didn't need nearly as much yarn, or as much length as the Rapunzel wig, so I used the width end of my table for the Jazmin wig.


I only used one skein of yarn for the Jazmin wig.




Okay, so there are really no pics of the making of the Jazmin wig, so I will do my best to explain things in detail. So, once you cut your wig off of your table, or anything else you use then you take your 2 sides and wrap them around your child's head and tie them together at the base of their hair line. Tie the 2 ends together with a piece of black yarn and tie it tight. Then move a little further down the wig, and tie another piece of black yarn around the bunch of hair. Then I just cut some of the blue ribbon, wrapped it loosely around were the wig was tied and hot glued the ends together. I am planning on spraying this wig with glitter also.

Now, to get the wig to cover your child's whole head instead of just around the sides, I just ran my fingers through it and kept pulling the yarn up from both sides up until it was all evenly distributed over Bugs head. It's really simple. I was going to trim it up so that it came down to her lower back, but that was immediately put to a stop once Bug heard what I was planning on doing. Little Miss has a wig down to her feet, so Bug must also have a crazy long wig.


Okay, so I am posting this picture because I ran into a problem with the Jazmin jewel thing that goes around her head. So, on the picture that comes with the costume, the jewel thing (I dont' really know what it's called) is supposed to go around like a big "poofy" thing of hair, so it didn't fit around Bugs head to begin with. Bugs hair is way to thin to really "poof" it into a ball so that the jewel thing will stay on. Then I tried a million different things and couldn't get the wig to "poof" enough to keep the jewel thing on either, so I had to do a little improvising. I don't know if you can really see, but I ended up sewing some black elastic to the ends of the jewel thing, and it now fits perfectly around bugs head with no "poofing" required. I used 5 inches of elastic, and it fits perfectly. Not to tight, but snug enough so that I now it's not going to fall off.


Here are both wigs finished. The girls of course just had to try their costumes on with their wigs to make sure everything was perfect.


Two big happy smiles lets me know I have done my job well! :)

For both wigs, it took me about 3 hours, and that included the messing with, figuring out, and sewing of the Jazmin jewel thing.

I am planning on making little slippers for them to use. I will try to remember to take pictures of that and post that as well.

I hope you enjoyed this. Let me know if you have any questions! :)





Monday, May 30, 2011

My New Bathroom

I know... I haven't blogged in FOREVER!!! I'm sorry! I've been crazy busy. But, I have tons of things to post about. This post is about my most recent project I have been working on, and I finally finished it. I am so excited.

I have a new Bathroom! It's so nice to finally have it done. We started this project in December (during Christmas break).... yes, as in 6 months ago and we are just finishing it.

This project has been a long time coming. I have lived in my house for 5 years now and this is how my bathroom looked for 4 1/2 years. White walls, no decorations, nothing... totally bare and boring. This is my guest bathroom too, so anyone who came to my house and needed to use the restroom would see this big room of boringness. I knew the theme I wanted to do in my bathroom, but I was never sure how to actually get the effect that I wanted.
(There is Bug in her pj's. She loves to help J with his projects, she is his little buddy)

More white walls....

Blah, Blah, Blah.....





Here is where things get exciting, frustrating, and never ending... this is the story of our bathroom remodel and why it took us 6 months to finish instead of the 1 week we had scheduled to finish it in. J came home one day with a new painting technique he wanted to try and said the bathroom would be a perfect place to try it out because I wanted to do a Beach theme in the bathroom and this new technique would make all of the walls look kinda old, and they would be a light brown, which is a "sandy" color. So I agreed. We decided that since J gets the whole week off between Christmas and New Years, that would be the perfect time to get started.
I don't know what this specific technique is called, but what you do is you put drywall mud up on the walls, spread it all over. You need to make it look a little messy, so that there are lines and holes in it. Then you can use either Stain or Paint mixed with glaze and you sponge it on the walls, and the paint gets in the lines, cracks, and little holes and makes them look darker and that makes the walls look old. It sounded easy enough.... or so we thought!

Okay, here is a run down of what not to do. We were 2 days into our project and we totally screwed it up and had to start over from scratch. I almost cried! That was a very bad day! We put the mud up all over the wall, and we had decided to use stain on the wall instead of paint because we already had some stain. So we got about 3/4 of the way done and we were running low on the stain that we had, so we went to the store and bought some more stain. We came home to hurry up and finish staining the walls, (thinking we would be done with the walls within a few hours) we broke open the new can of stain, dipped the sponge in and started rubbing it on the wall and it was the WRONG color!!!! What???? We double checked the cans and they were both the same.... what was the problem? We then realized that the stain we had already had at our house was old enough that most of the pigment had settled and gooped down at the bottom of the can, so when we opened up a new, fresh can of stain all of the pigment was mixed in correctly, and we had 2 different colors of stain on our walls!

You can't just paint over stain... there was no fixing this. It looked awful, and the color difference was huge. I wish I had a picture to show you, but I was to devastated to get any pictures. The only solution to our problem was to sand off all of the walls we had spent a day putting mud up on, and start the process all over again.

(This is one of the only pictures I have of our first attempt. As you can tell from looking at the floor, it's really messy to work with all of that mud. I am still cleaning stuff up off of the floor.)

Okay, so we rallied our spirits, and just dived into attempt # 2. We were to far into this project to just not finish. We decided that we were just going to do it right this time, so we took the mirror off of the wall, the light fixtures off, and we even took the base boards, and the trim off of the door frame. There was no cutting corners this time, no mistakes. Or so we thought AGAIN!

We put the mud up all over the walls again, and we had googled a new way of doing this technique. You get a lighter color of paint, and paint a base coat on the walls, than you get a darker color of paint and glaze and you mix them together. So, we got a really dark brown color, and mixed it with a clear glaze, then you take the sponge, dip it in, and rub all over the walls. We figured using paint would be easier to fix than Stain if we screwed up again.

We painted our base coat of paint on the walls and we were mixing the darker paint and the glaze (I think the mixture is 4 parts glaze to 1 part of paint) when we realized that the base coat of paint was bubbling off of the walls and starting to peel off. WTH???? There were these huge bubbles all over the wall. You could literally pop one and peel huge sections of paint off of the wall! This has never happened to me when I've painted my whole entire life. I was shocked, ticked off, tired, on the verge of tears, and ready to just set my bathroom on fire and collect the insurance money on it! I was done! Luckily for me J has way more patience than I do, and he went straight to the computer to research our problem.

Our problem was that all of the dust from the drywall mud on the wall was making it impossible for the paint to stick to it. We discovered you need to buy this stuff called New Drywall Primer that you paint on your walls after putting mud on them. This primer will stick to the dust covered walls, and keep the dust from escaping, so that you can paint on top of a wall covered in drywall mud.

(This picture is one after we had peeled off all of the base paint from the wall)

This picture is one of J putting the mud up on the walls. It's kinda hard to see anything, but I was hoping to show everyone how you can leave lines in it to make the texture show up when you put the paint and the glaze on the wall.

Here is Bug, in a different set of pj's helping J paint the primer on the wall. She is a good little helper.

Okay, so attempt #3! We painted the primer on the wall, painted the lighter base paint on the wall, and them sponged the darker paint/glaze mixture on the walls.... it took forever. J is a total perfectionist, so it was making him crazy that the color wasn't as even as he would have liked it. He kept trying to fix different spots, trying to make them all look evenly colored, and we just decided that the more you mess with it, the more it looks like it needs help. It took J a while to just let his OCDness go and just let it be all random and non even. I thought it looked amazing, and I loved the fact that the color was lighter is some spots and darker in others. After all, the whole point is to make the walls look older, and a little chaotic. So, if you are an OCD perfectionist, this technique might not be something you will ever want to try.

It took us all of Christmas break just to get the walls painted along with the base boards, and the trim painted and put up. We did cut the mirror we already had in half, and then J made a frame for the mirror out of wood and we painted it the same dark brown color as the trim and the baseboards. I thought it was a nice touch. When J first mentioned cutting the mirror, I thought he was crazy. Like any normal human being, I just assumed that if you tried to cut a mirror, it would shatter. Boy was I wrong.... J picked up a glass cutter for $2.95 at Home Depot, and cut the mirror in half with no problems. That was something seriously cool I learned from this remodel from hell! :)

We had no time after that to finish decorating the bathroom, or touching up the paint. We also needed to make a shelf and paint it, paint the door, and put the fixtures back up, like the toilet paper holder, towel holder, ect. This is why it took us 6 months to finish it. We had no time until this 4 day weekend, in which we should have been camping but our girls both got sick and Mr. Blue Eyes broke his toe, so we decided to stay home. I was bummed to miss camping, but now I see it as a blessing in disguise.

Here it is, my Bathroom.... it's finally finished! :) I'm so happy. Let me know what you think.


These giant flip flops complete my world. When I saw these in the store time stood still. I almost couldn't' breath. Heavenly light was shinning down, Angels were singing, I felt all warm and fuzzy inside. I knew we were soul mates for life. I had to have them! :)



I hope you all like my new and amazing bathroom and, I hope you all learn something helpful from our many attempts at getting it right. It was awful to be in the middle of all of the chaos of this trial and error project, but I am glad to have it finally finished and put in the past!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Diet Coke

Diet Coke..... those two words can instantly relax me! We are great friends. But....... all good things must come to an end!

Here It comes, I'm just going to say it to the world (or my 8 followers! ) :) I am going to quit drinking Diet Coke! I have already started, It has been over 24 hours since my last drink. Crazy right?

J is going to pass out! I haven't told him yet. He will never believe it. I am hopelessly addicted to Diet Coke, and it's so bad for you. He is always trying to convince me to stop and to drink more water.

I have been drinking Diet Coke since I was about 8 I think. My sister was diagnosed as a Diabetic, and so my mom started buying Diet Soda, and that is when I started drinking Diet Coke and I haven't stopped since. I usually drink at least 2 a day.

I have been thinking a lot lately about quitting. I have been training for a 1/2 marathon, and I know my running would be so much better if I would quit drinking Diet Coke and start drinking more water. I also have been having some problems with the nerves on the left side of my body, and part of me thinks that if I drank more water that would help release some of the bad toxins in my body, and maybe my nerve problems wouldn't be so bad.

I never drink water, I don't really like how it tastes. But I will drink it if I don't have any Diet Coke in the house because I don't like drinking juice or anything else. So, if I eliminate the Diet Coke then I will seriously up my water intake, and that can only benefit my body.

So, I am saying goodbye to my old friend for good I think. I am posting this so that I can't really back out. This is goodbye forever. It's all or nothing with me. I'm not going to be able to just have one every once in a while. I know if I have any at all, I won't stop. (wow, I sound like an alcoholic don't I?)

Thanks everyone for supporting me in my decision! :) Wish me luck! :)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Dinner Rolls vs Breadsticks

Yesterday I made dinner for two families in my neighborhood that needed meals. I decided to make soup because it's easy to make a big batch of it. But, you can't have soup without some sort of bread. I could have bought rolls from the store, but I knew that fresh, home made rolls would be so much better. And, they sounded so good. I usually just use my bread recipe and make rolls out of it instead of bread loaves, but this time I decided to find an actual roll recipe to use.

I searched the internet and found a recipe that looked easy, and it made 2 dozen which was a good amount of rolls, so I would only have to double the batch. I read over the directions several times and seemed confident I could handle it. I mean... how hard can it be to make rolls right?

I got up in the morning, ran to the store, came home and started the rolls. I spent around 3-4 hours making these rolls. I put them in the oven to bake, I was so excited! I pulled them out and I realized that I RUINED them!!!!! I ruined 4 dozen rolls!!!! I was devastated!!!

I had been baking all morning, and I still had the soup to make. With only 2 hours before dinner was supposed to be dropped off I had ruined the rolls and had no time to start over.

Look at them! They are sad, and scary looking!
Instead of being these nice warm, butter covered, pieces of fluff they were these thick, solid, chunkies of bread!

I contemplated taste testing one, and if they tasted okay then just delivering them anyways.... but I just couldn't bring myself to give them to anyone by my own family to eat. (That statement is securing me the mother of the year award!) :)

My kids tried them, and actually liked them. So, I bagged them up and am saving them for dinners throughout the week.

But, I was still left with a problem...... what to do about getting some bread for my meal. I could exist off of just carbs... I love Bread! In my opinion, soup is no good without bread! Most meals are no good without bread, in my book!

I called my friend out of desperation. I just needed to have a mini nervous breakdown before I could continue on with my dinner.

She saved my life.... there I was, hyperventilating on the phone about Mr. Blue Eyes still napping so I couldn't go to the store, and how I needed to start the soup, blah blah blah.... and she whipped out this recipe for these breadsticks that take about 30 minutes to make from start to finish! NO WAY!!! (Elaine moment.... if she was there I think I would have totally hit her and pushed her over, just like Elaine.)

I thought it was worth a try. She gave me the recipe and I got right to work. They totally came out prefect, and it took no time at all! It was so easy, I almost cried. I love this breadstick recipe, we are best friends. I will use it from now on with soup instead of rolls.

I went to battle with my dinner rolls and got my butt kicked.... I'm not about to do that again!

Here is the picture of my leftover breadsticks. I didn't have time to take a picture of the nice looking ones that I gave away.

They do look a little mangy, but I was in a hurry, and partially crazy at this point. I am sure next time I can make them look a little nicer.

Okay, here is the website I got the roll recipe from. She said in her instructions to follow the recipe exactly to get the best rolls ever... well I followed her recipe exactly, and mine were totally jacked up! I think I know what went wrong though.... I just mixed in all of the flour it called for without thinking about it. Usually when I make bread I add the flour slowly and watch the dough, and just wing it when it comes to the amount of flour. But this website made it very clear to follow the recipe exactly, so that is what I did.

If I ever attempt dinner rolls again, I think I might give this recipe another go, but I will only add the first 3 cups of flour and then slowly add the 4th cup as needed, instead of adding everything all at once. I noticed my dough didn't look nearly as sticky as hers did in the picture.

Also, I read on the comments section of this recipe, that people thought it was a little bland and were adding 2 tsp of salt instead of one. I agree with them, it's a little bland so I think I would add more salt next time.

Here is the recipe for my life saving breadsticks!!!

Breadsticks

1 Tbl yeast

1 ½ cups warm water

2 T sugar

½ t salt

3 ½ flour

4 T butter

Dissolve yeast in water. Add sugar & let it sit and bubble up. Then add salt and flour. Kneed dough for a few minutes. Let dough rest for 10 minutes. Melt butter, brush some on bottom of pan. Roll out dough and brush dough with butter. Then add parmesian cheese, garlic salt, salad supreme, ect. Cut strips 1 ½ inches wide and about 6 inches long, and twist. Place in pan. Bake @ 375 for 15 – 20 minutes.


In my opinion on Dinner Rolls vs Breadsticks, Breadsticks totally rocked! :)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Sopapillas

So.... I was at church today, and I was starving. Church starts at 9 am folks. Getting everyone up, dressed, and ready to go all by 9 am leaves absolutely NO time for me to eat breakfast. So, there I was, starving, in a room full of about 50 kids from the ages of 7 - 11, trying to keep my snarling stomach under control, when the lady who was leading the music started talking to the kids about Spring time, and Bees.... What does this have to do with Sopapillas you ask? Everything.... she started talking about how bees like honey, and my brain clicked! Did she say honey? Mmmmmm..... Sopapillas. :) Every time I hear the word Honey, I think Sopapillas. I had to have them.
Did I have a recipe? NO! Have I ever made them before? NO! But, I wasn't about to let that stop me! I have Google.... with Google I can conquer the world! (Have I mentioned that I love Google?)
So, here is my first time attempt at Sopapillas.

Yum! :)
(these are the pretty ones... not all of them turned out pretty!)

These are the ingredients I used. Plus 3/4 cup of water.

You take your Flour, Baking Powder, and salt and you sift them into a bowl.

Once that is all sifted you add your Shortening.

I then used my pastry cutter and mixed everything together until all of the shortening was mixed in and the flour mixture looked a little crumbly.

Then you add your water and mix until it turns into dough. The instructions I read said to use your hands to mix. I hate using my hands for stuff like that. I'm just lazy, why would I do it with my hands when I have modern electronics? I do have a Bosch mixer that I use for making everything, but my mixer doesn't mix little portions of dough very well. That is the one thing I don't like about my Bosch, I can't just make 1 pizza crust, or 1 loaf of bread. If it's not A substantial amount of dough, then it just flings the stuff around in the bowl and it doesn't mix anything. (and yes all of you Bosch snobs out there, I am complaining about my mixer, and that is okay, so just deal with it!) I did end up mixing this with my hands and it actually worked out really well, and it wasn't that hard.

Once mixed, break up and roll into little balls. I weighed mine, and I got 8 portions that weighed around 2.2 0z. The recipe I followed said to break your dough into 12 portions, but they just looked to small for me. The bigger the better right? :) So, I only did 8! Then cover and let sit for about 20 minutes.

After the 20 minutes is up, you take each ball of dough and mash it flat and cut it into 4 triangles. I then took each triangle and rolled over it a few times with the rolling pin to make them thin enough to bubble up when you cook them. The first few I did, I just mashed with my hands, and they were way to thick, and didn't bubble up at all.

Heat your oil up in a frying pan, once hot add your dough pieces into the hot oil and cook until brown on both sides. Watch out, they have a little bit of an attitude, the oil has to be just right temperature or they won't really bubble up like they should.

Okay, when I first started heating up my oil, I set my burner to 6, but I was putting the scones in and they weren't bubbling up. I tried a few things with the dough to see if I could fix the problem and finally figured out the oil needed to be hotter. I turned up the heat to 7, and that worked really well until I was almost finished. I only had a few left and they stopped bubbling up again, so I turned the heat down to in between 6 & 7 and they started bubbling up again. So, the oil has to be just the right temperature, or they don't cook as well. But, bubblie or not, they tasted amazing!

Yum.... could life get any better than this? I sifted some powdered sugar on and then drizzled honey on top. Sopapillas combined with a nice cold Diet Coke.... It was a powdered sugar, honey covered, paradise! :) These were consumed within 3.5 seconds after this picture was taken.

(Here is the link the website I got this recipe from.)
Recipe

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbl. shortening
3/4 cup water
2 cups vegetable oil

Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into bowl. Then add shortening and blend until mixture is corse and crumbles. Using your hands add water and mix into a smooth dough. Kneed lightly on a floured surface. Cut dough into 12 pieces, roll into round balls, and set aside. Heat oil in frying pan or deep fryer. Roll dough balls into thin circles, and cut into triangles. Fry in hot oil until golden brown, turn over when dough puffs up. Remove and drain onto paper towels.