~ Here is my story, told one 'Spunky' moment {and craft} at a time. ~

Friday, January 28, 2011

Five Question Friday, 1/28/2011

Hey Everyone ~

I can't believe Ms. T is already eleven days old!  She is doing very well, and she has her one week/two week old check-up today {I will tweet her new stats when we get out of the Doctor's office}.  Ms. Diva continues to amaze with me with how helpful she is trying to be.  No mean feat for a 15-month-old.  She already has an 'understanding' that Ms. T's binkies are not hers, and is determined that the baby's bottle needs to be held by the person holding the baby.  Otherwise she will hand you the baby's bottle, LOL! 

Having Ms. T at home motivated me to finally get around to redoing the seat cushion for the rocking chair.  A task that had been on my to-do list for waaaaaaay to long.  Here are the results.

I am not terribly thrilled with the finished look, but it is uber comfy.  I used a four inch foam from Joann's {purchased New Year's on sale}, and some micro-suede {also purchased at Joann's during the New Year's sale}.  For the underneath I used some fabric from my stash.  I should have made the side strip of suede longer/deeper, so that you couldn't see the under fabric at all.  So, as much as I hope there isn't a next time... that is what I will do differently next time.

PS - Next week I will start keeping track of my weight loss.  My goal is to be down to 140 pounds by next Christmas {gotta fit into my party dress!}.  My two week check-up from the c-section is on Monday, and I will be posting that weight as part of Tone-It-Up Tuesday/Post-It Note Tuesday.

Now onto the five questions for this Friday ~

1. If you had $1,000 to donate to a charity, which would you choose?  I would donate it to our Church's youth group ministry.  They are always working to take the teens to some really awesome events, but most do not have the financial backing to pay their own way.  They host several fundraisers to help raise funds, and I know that they would spend the $1,000 in a way that will impact the future of these teens.

2. Snow days: Do you welcome them happily or are they a pain in your butt?  I welcome them!  They can be a pain in the butt when I am behind at work already, but they are a welcome break.  Of course, living in Central Texas we don't tend to get them very often, LOL.

3. What talent did you wish you had and why?  I wish I could sing.  I am one of those sitting on my couch watching the 15-year-olds this season on American Idol in awe.  I also love laughing at those that have no business thinking they can sing.  As one who also can't sing... I would never torture you with my singing on national tv.  Truly though, how can some of those people truly think they can sing???  Every season it amazes me, LOL.  PS ~ That Steven dude is really neat, and JLo is too cute!

4. Are you a news, politics or celebrity gossip junkie?  Nope.  Addicted to crafts and blog hopping: yes!

5. What is your favorite "cocktail"? (Are you a beer person, a kiddie cocktail junkie, or perhaps your more the "Cosmo" kind?! Anything flies...doesn't hafta be alcoholic!)  Definitely not a beer person.  But, I normally am okay with anything fruity with rum in it.  {Obviously I drink tons... since I can't even name a cocktail with rum in it, LOL!}

Linking up with:
Five Question Friday at My Little Life

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Quick Neck Pillow Cover

When I brought home my latest fabric finds, Mr. SD thought the John Deere flannel fabric would make a great cover for his neck pillow.  So... here is how I made it in about half an hour.

I took measurements of the pillow {making sure to write them down, my memory tends to be poor with numbers, LOL!}:

Then I cut the fabric from selvage to selvage:

I rolled both selvage edges over twice {edge is inside the stitched sides}:

I wrapped the length of fabric around the neck pillow.  Here is where I should have cut of five or six inches and rerolled the edge to finish.  Hindsight is always 20/20.  So... here is my tip, make sure your opening overlap is only three or four inches.  Otherwise, you will have one heck of a time getting your pillow inside the case.

A picture of the western themed pillow and the case.

When stitching the two long seams, start one inch away from the fabric fold, stitch to the reinforcing stitches and then proceed to the edge of the fold.  Flip the pillow case and stitch to the other end, flip the pillow again, stitch back one inch then do your reinforcing stitches.  This helps to keep your corners from coming out due to stress placed at the end of the stitching.

{Starting about one inch from the fold.}

{Get to the end and flip, and stitch back.}

{stitching back one inch before running the reinforcing stitch sequence.}

As I said this was just a quick project.  I did not get my iron out, just held the edges straight and flat as I stitched.

{here is another picture of flipping at the end of the stitching}

Ms. Diva was a ham for the camera as usual.  Here are a couple shots of the clown.

Giveaway at Spun Sugar Quilts!

Vickie, over at Spun Sugar Quilts, is celebrating being part of Moda Bake Shop's book, Fresh Fabric Treats, with a GIVEAWAY!!!

Check out her blog post about the new book, and her favorite pre-cuts {here} for  your chance to win a copy of the book and a set of fabric.

My favorite pre-cut at the moment is jelly rolls and honey buns.  I am working on a quilt topper using one of Moda's newest fabric lines, Fresh Flowers.

Friday, January 21, 2011

The newest Diva - Ms. T

Ms. T arrived on Monday, weighing 9 pounds at 20 inches long.  Ms. Diva is handling her arrival very gracefully.  Ms. Diva is shaken up by the changes, but loves her little sister... most of the interaction has been amazinly gentle for a 15-month-old.  Ms. T is eating very well, and producing as much No. 1 and No. 2 as a little baby can.  Both Grandmas are tickled pink with the newest addition.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Ironing Board Cover and Towels

Here is a wonderfully fun Ironing Board Cover and two matching pairs of Stay-Put Towels.  The fabric was provided by the client, and certainly will make doing the laundry much more fun!  Enjoy how I made the world cuter today.

Linking up with...



Friday, January 14, 2011

Five Question Friday ~ 1/14/2011

1. What movie could you watch over and over again and not get tired of?  Last of the Mohicans.  I have watched that movie so many times, LOL!  It is all about having a good cry type movie.  Beautiful scenery, beautiful music, beautiful leading man.  Need I say more?

2. What's your biggest pet peeve right now?  I am sure I have one, but right now I am sooooo ready to not be pregnant that issues with others is not high on my list at the moment.

Speaking of that... Ms. T should be making her arrival any day now (which makes it even harder to still be pregnant).

3. If you had to describe your best friend in five words or less, what would you say?  Only five words... that doesn't leave much room for clarifications... let's see... Best Friend, Fun, Trustworthy, and Listens.

4. If you did not have to worry about money or go to school what would you do for a living?  Be a stay-at-home mom that gets to craft and blog about it.  The crafting and blogging part are currently true, but the stay-at-home part is a work in progress.

5. What is your one "splurge" item, that you will always buy, no matter the cost?  Gas for my car?  Sometimes it seems like a splurge item when it costs more to fill up than it does to go out for dinner with the family.  Ouch!

Another item would be good shoes.  I have not been a Payless kinda girl for a long time.  I like quality, and cheap shoes does not cut it for me.  And... there is always fabric, LOL!

Linking up with:
BoostMyBlogFriday         monogram

And then there were 4

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Burp Clothes for Ms. T - In Progress

Mom picked out this fabric for Ms. T for burp clothes.  I used this "Cute as a Button" design to go with the round dots on the fabric.  Stay tuned to see what design we used on the other burp cloth.  PS ~ Ms. T has not yet arrived, but is expected within the next week.

Quick Test

I am trying to switch the standard font on The Spunky Diva.  Let's see if this worked!

I am up to 1,000!

I have officially collected over 1,000 SwagBucks!!!!

My goal is to collect 1,850 and trade them in for the iTunes $15 Gift Card to give to Mr. SD as a Valentine's gift.  Wish me luck!

Click below if you are interested in collecting SwagBucks for yourself.  You earn SwagBucks simply by searching the internet as you would normally.  There are additional ways to earn SwagBucks by finding codes, and of course they start you out with a sign-up 'bonus' to get your account started. 

So far I have traded in my SwagBucks for six $5 Amazon Gift Cards ($30 worth).  That is just by using SwagBucks as my search screen for the past couple months!

Search & Win

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

How do you figure sales tax?

Since I sell both locally (craft fairs, vendors) and on Etsy (some taxed and some untaxed sales) I have had to decide on how I want to deal with the question of collecting sales taxes.

When pricing I have decided that I will just 'eat' the sales tax on local purchases so that I don't have to mess with collecting sales taxes right then.  I figure that at local craft fairs I am not paying Etsy or PayPal on these sales.  Plus, on Etsy I want to encourage customers to come back and not give them sticker shock by collecting sales tax after they have decided to make a purchase. 

So... I have set up my Sales Spreadsheet to collect the info I need to complete my State Sales Tax Form, this is seperate from my detailed sales report or item inventory sheets.  Total Sales and Taxable Sales.  Since I don't collect sales tax 'on-top' of the cost of the item's price, I have to back-up to the pre-tax price to find out how much was for sales tax.  Here is a website that has a set of boxes where you can plug in your numbers, and it will figure it out for you: Sales Tax Calculator (I haven't tried this out through).


You can take your price and divide by 1.(sales tax) to find out what your pre-tax price would be.  For a $10 item it would look like this:

$10 / 1.0825 = 9.24 (this is the item's 'real' price)

To double check: $9.24 x 8.25% = 0.76  

This worked quickly when I went through my list of sales.  All sales that happened in my state I just figured out the pre-tax price this way.  Then I added all sales, and all taxable sales together to complete the tax form.  I even got my sales tax file ahead of the deadline!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Another Book is on it's way!

I have finished up all the books I had to review (the Toby Mac book review will be posted this coming Sunday).  Now I have another on it's way!  I am very excited to be reading this one.  I have included the publisher's description below:

Left at the Altar - My Story of Hope and Healing for Every Woman Who Has Felt the Heartbreak of Rejection - By Kimberley Kennedy - Published by Thomas Nelson

Fascinatingly insightful and hopeful page-turning account of one woman's encounter with ultimate rejection.

TV journalist Kimberley Kennedy went from having it all to complete devastation, rejection, and public humiliation when, like a Lifetime movie scenario, her fiance left her at the altar. But her story did not end at the church. With candor and humor, Kimberley shares the personal details of her life as she journeys from devastation to a deeper understanding of what happened and how she found not only healing but hope to someday find her Mr. Right.

The intimate woman-to-woman inspirational journey includes:

•Stories of women who were left at the altar

•How to deal with feelings of anger towards God

•The little black dress analogy

•How not to let your rejection define who you become

•Tools for healing and moving on

•How to laugh, love again, and return to dating

•Ultimate insight from men who have been rejectors

Post-It Note Tuesday, 1/11/2011

A major goal for me this year is to get back down to 140 pounds.  I plan to start with a 30 pound drop by the end of January.  Nothing like having a baby to start the weight loss program, LOL!  So to keep myself accountable I have decided to use Post-It Note Tuesdays as my weight check-in day.  I am not planning on dropping the weight fast (other than the actual birth weight loss), but want to stay consistent and motivated through-out the year.

"They" say that being public with your goal and your progress is one reason why programs like Weight Watchers are successful.  Let's see if I can find the same accountability in posting here on The Spunky Diva.

Here are the first post-its to get the ball rolling:

Linking up with:

Only Parent Chronicles

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Book Review - Love's First Bloom by Delia Parr

How would your faith fair if you were suddenly uprooted from your comfortable home and thrust into the middle of your father's unsavory ministry?  In Love's First Bloom, Delia Parr explores this question with artistic storytelling.

Ruth Livingstone leaves New York City in the middle of the night on board a packet ship with a baby and an assumed name. She finds herself struggling with the request her father has asked of her. When her father becomes the center of a controversial murder case keeping her mouth shut about who she is becomes harder and harder. When the case takes a turn for the worst the media starts hunting for the 'missing' daughter.

Ruth learns more the affect of her father's ministry has had on the lives of the family she is living with as she helps in the family store. Their support helps Ruth make it through this difficult time. A stranger appears in town. Will he be a friend or enemy?

I really enjoyed Delia Parr's writing style. The situations she brought to the story showed how God can call us in unpredictable situations to show others our faith. This story also shows how a ministry that helps the unwanted people of society can help those same people become totally different people. I am planning on picking up Delia Parr's other book published by Bethany House Publishers, Hearts Awakening.

I received a copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers to review. The opinions in this review are 100% my own.

Linking up with -

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Five Question Friday, 1/7/2010

It is hard to believe that the first Friday of 2011 is already here!!!  I already miss Christmas.  With all the family in town, being close to my due date, and all the stuff I have been sewing for The Spunky Diva on Etsy, I fell like I kinda just skipped and hopped right over Christmas this year.  I did do more decorating this year than last at the Cottage, but certainly was not a big help in decorating the big house.

We also dealt with Ms. Diva being sick for the first time.  Not bad since we made it to fourteen months without her being sick.  It was a lot scarier than I thought it would be with her not being herself.  Miss raring to go first thing in the morning with no time to cuddle (especially with her mommy), just laid on my chest and didn't even 'talk' to the dogs.  Freaky.

She then very helpfully spread her germs.  I ended up going down Wednesday, just before my Prenatal visit so my Doctor was able to prescribe anti-nauseous pills (of course keeping those down long enough to help was interesting).  Then it hit my parents Thursday morning.  I am now waiting to see if Mr. SD becomes a victim too. As I am posting I am working my way through my second PB&J sandwich of the day.  I am fairly confident it will stay put, LOL!

Now onto the five questions for this Friday:

1. What is your current favorite book, and why?  Currently reading City on Our Knees by Toby Mac.  I love Toby Mac's enthusiasm for the Lord, and would love to add some of that to my life this year.  Plus I adore his music, and his wife evented horses (the same sport I did growing up).

2. Do you go to the dentist regularly?  Shamefully no.  I really need to get back into that.  I haven't been since I moved.  It just seems so hard to 'find' one, and make the first appointment.  That is actually on my to-do list for after Ms. T comes.

3. What is your worst memory from High School?  Don't have one, LOL!  I was homeschooled from 7th grade one.  So High School rocked for me, I did classes at the local community college.

4. What do you hope to be remembered for in your life?  Being a faithful follower of Christ.  I want my life to reflect my beliefs, and I want to pass that faith onto my children.  There is so much going on in the world today that faith gets lost in the shuffle.

5. Are you superstitious or do you have any superstitions?  I am not very superstitious at all.  I jump at noises all the time, LOL, but I don't believe in the buggy man or that Freddy will find me in my dreams.

Here is my favorite Toby Mac song (please note that this does not count the DC Talk songs, LOL):

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Newest Addition to The Spunky Diva - Hand Towels

Valentine's and St. Patrick's Day are now represented in The Spunky Diva shop.  Check out the fun embossed designs used on these gorgeous, 100% cotton, terry cloth hand towels!

Linking up with:

Make it Yours @ My Backyard Eden

Giveaway at Mechelle Designs

Check out this great giveaway to start the New Year over at Mechelle DesignsWho couldn't use another calender to start the year with?  You can check out more of Mechelle's designs on her Etsy Store.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

First Project of 2011 - Shirt Ruffle

One of my goals (more to goals of 2011 to be posted in a goal post, almost sounding sporty here, later this week) is to be better about using up fabric that I have been collecting this past year like a fiend.  Have questions about the amount of fabric... check out these posts: Fabric Posts

I also want to continue learning new sewing skills in 2011.  I purchased a ruffler foot, and decided there was no time like the present to get started on ruffles!

Since I used fabric I had on hand, a shirt Ms. Diva was outgrowing, and the ruffler foot... technically this project did not cost a cent.  {technically} 

One of the issues with a lot of Ms. Diva's shirts is that she is very tall in the body, and even though she is already wearing 18m and 24m shirts they still tend to be to short.  So... this purple shirt became the subject to my first ruffling experiment.  I used a 6.5" strip of the Hearts fabric folded in half (no wrong side showing), and ruffled away.  It wasn't hard at all!!!!  I do need to experiment further with the tension while ruffling, but overall Ms. Diva has a renewed and usable T-Shirt to match these Valentine's Kitchen Towels, LOL!

{ The living room is not fully decorated until every toy is out, LOL! }

{ What a ham! }

Linking up with:
The Girl Creative

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I am a fun loving mom of two, that fits in reading a book whenever possible! Come see what I am reading and what free eBooks I have found to share with you! ~Kimberlee
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