{SPROUTS SUPERHERO PARTY - PART 2}

Part Two

Our little Super Sprout turned 4 last month and I promised to share the details of her party and I started right HERE.  Oh I whined and complained about internet connection on that post and guess what?!?!  We just got a 4G myFi connection device from our cell phone carrier and hot dog!  We actually have reasonable speed and connectivity!  Feel like I've been living in the dark ages with no internet.  Super happy.  Super.  Happy.

Oh?  Party?  Yes...I was getting to that.

I trailed off on the last post when we were getting to the games.  So, here's the 411:

1) Super Hero Strength Training.  Sprout was kicking butt and taking names here.  We used one of those inflatable punching things...I don't know what they are really called - but I got it for like $6 at the store.  Worked like a charm.  The guests had to hone their power punches to get the bad guys.  Good times folks.  Good times.

2) Vaporizing Villains.  It was FREEZING cold outside the day of her party which is unusual so we had to keep everything indoors.  I hung up a plastic table cloth, taped up our comic book villains - add a can of silly string for every kid and wham-o!  Instant happiness all around.  Big hit.  Easy clean up.

3) Throw a Mighty Super Disc.  The peas had more fun with this than anyone.  They set up a million different stacks of these cups and then the kids would throw a ball or a frisbee and knock them down.  We played this for-ever.  They loved it.  Even after all the games were over, they came back to this one and asked if we could play it again.  Big hit.

4) Bat Cave. Not one single picture.  I guess we were having too much fun we forgot to get a picture of this.  I used about 4 black plastic table cloths and taped them up in a doorway and out into a room over some chairs and low tables to make a maze and create our dark "bat cave".  Then we threw in some "kryptonite sticks".  The kids had to crawl in and bring out 5 one at a time.  They did this over and over again.  So much fun!

5) Superhero Cape Ceremony. After each kid successfully completed the tasks set before them in the Superhero Academy, they were then awarded their superhero capes.  Sprout loved her her Super "S" cape!  And that also was one of the party favors for the kids.  Labor intensive - not too bad.  If anyone is interested, I'll be glad to share my pattern.  I actually just used one of baby bib patterns and enlarge it to get the neck shape and then freehand drew the rest.  It worked great!  I used ric rac trim, felt for their letter shield and then I made felt flowers for the girls and put those on the ties up front with velcro.  I made them all velcro closure.  And they are lined which in my opinion, made them easier to put together.

My friend Kristin, who also made the peas cake over HERE, (scroll through those pictures and you'll see Sprout at that party in her Batman shirt and tutu) made Sprouts Batman Cake.  It also had a bat signal spotlight cake beside it.  Now, Sprout asked Kristin about making her this cake for months and months.  When the time came, it turned out Kristin ended up with a foot injury and had to have surgery.  She was maybe 4 days post surgery with a bone added and about 10 pins when she made this cake.  Pretty darn amazing I think and Sprout LOVED it!

This was probably one of the easier parties I've done, thankfully.  And Sprout still thinks Batman is the best thing ever.

{SUPER SPROUT's SUPERHERO PARTY}

PART ONE:

Our little Super Sprout turned 4 last month and I promised to share, and finally I do, the details of her party.

We live on a road considered "rural".  Although we have close access to everything - we have no cable, no internet connection, nada.  Right?  You've heard me gripe about this before.  It's why blogging can be so hard for me because by the time I edit and load photos into a post - it's about a 1.5 - 2 hour process.  Sloooow speeeed.

Anyway, I digress.  There is a silver lining to the whole "no cable" thing and that is that we only get a few TV channels and one of those is the "retro TV" station.  On Saturday nights at 7pm, it's like clockwork.  Sprout will start asking, "Is Batman on soon?  Now?  Now is it on?  Now is Batman on?".  The girl has a serious thing for the old Adam West version of Batman ala 1970's.  We scarcely ever miss an episode.  So to no surprise, she started asking for a Batman birthday party about 6 months before her birthday.

We compromised and made it a "superhero" party - hey, we didn't want to leave any superheroes out.  We are an equal superhero household.

Don't ask.  I didn't have a superhero outfit of my own and so I guess I thought dressing like a goofball in a cape with a star on my cheek would fit the bill.  I was right.  Sprout loved it.  Hey, if my girl is happy, I'm happy.  Our decorations were pretty simple.  I started with some polka dot fabric for the background, kind of like a comic book backdrop, yes?  Then I added a comic book banner.  I actually bought a comic book and cut it all up.

Let's just say comic books aren't like they were when I was a kid.  Um, hello...barely appropriate for kids...what's up with the girl wonder and her big you-hoos and skimpy-ness yada yada yada?  I actually had to censor most of the comic book.  Who knew comics could be so offensive these days, wow.

I added "power aid pellets" aka M&M's because Sprout is a fiend for those candies.  Wrapped a couple of shoeboxes.  Added some of our batman toy collection.  Yes, we have a collection.  And used blue and red bags as our favor bags loaded with some goodies for superheroes.

superhero birthday party

You can click on the graphic above, slide it into photoshop or duplicate in a word doc, however you know how to use it to make copies for yourself and your own superhero.

Love our sunroom.  It's our go-to party spot.  Industrial strength carpet.  Nice views.  We love it.

Once our SuperHero friends arrived - it was time to start our Superhero Academy Training.  We started with our SUPERHERO STRENGTH TRAINING.  Sprout loved this.  Way too much.  The girl is a power house.  She took down the inflatable spider-man like nobody's business.  She's learned a lot from the "real" Batman, don't you know?

Well, there was a lot more mayhem and fun had but you'll have to come back later to see the rest.  Serious, I'm at roughly 2 hours to get this post to this point...I'm headed to my superhero mommy bed.  Part Two will be next up!

 

{imperfect = perfect}

Sometimes things that don't turn out the way you expected or hoped - end up being exactly the right thing.

Sometimes, when you try to bake your husband an angel food cake, from a box mix, that you've never made before and then you use a pan you've also never used, and then you bake said cake and you're not sure exactly what constitutes "done" - um, sometimes it comes out rather imperfect.

Such is life.

But the cake was perfect.  It was tasty.  A tad bit chewy.  And it provided many laughs for our friends who shared it with us.  And it has now been added to the list of "Trish cooking stories".  It goes along with the giblets I left in the turkey on Christmas day that we didn't discover until everyone was done and we were packing the turkey left overs up, or the fried chicken I made by sprinkling flour over the TOP of the chicken and it came out burnt in one huge massive lump, or the hot dogs and beans I served in our first year of marriage that my husband questioned, "were these slimy when you took them out of the package?  Why, yes.  I had to rinse them off" followed by him quickly spitting out his food and telling me that meant they had spoiled.  Yes, not perfect - but in a way, the unexpected, the fun memories = perfect.

Where we live, we don't have internet service.  No cable.  Nada.  And when it rains outside, our land lines for our house phone gets all crackly.  In fact, I could hear at least 3 or 4 of our other neighbors on the line while on the phone.  I couldn't ever tell who I was eaves dropping on but nonetheless, not a perfect situation.

We have since hooked up our home phone to our cell phones.  And gotten a hotspot on our phones for internet.  Not a perfect solution.  But it works.  Most of the time.  Consequently, I'm sometimes slow with email or updating the blog or fixing tech problems because we don't have the "power" to do it from home with our limited connection.  Kinda stinks most of the time.  I'm hoping someday soon the internet gods will bless our rural road with some connectivity.  Oh, how I dream....

But that lack of connection probably keeps me off the computer (off more than I should be on I guess with all the work I have to do) and keeps me hanging with my family more.

Sometimes things that don't turn out the way you expected or hoped - end up being exactly the right thing.

 

 

Letter to Sprout

Dear Sprout,

3 years ago today, we welcomed you into our family of four and became a family of five.  You have been the brightest star in our family and have brought countless joys and smiles to your father and me and your sisters too! I think I may have been so busy when your sisters were little because there were two of them at once, that I missed some of the wonderful little baby things.  I am so glad I had the experience with you - to take care of you, nurse you, rock you, and hold only you.  You were a very good baby and we wondered if you would ever cry because you rarely ever were sad.

You share your birthday with my oldest sister, your Aunt, who is in heaven.  I sometimes wonder if that makes your grandmother sad because I miss my sister terribly and I know she does too.  But I think you have brought back a visible celebration to this day that I know my sister enjoys with you.  I always feel her in my heart and I know that our smiles on your birthday (and hers) would make her very happy.

I don't really have words to describe how much I have enjoyed being your Mom Sprout.  Maybe having my "Mom" confidence from having twins first helped me to enjoy you more as an infant and now as a toddler.  But there is something about you.  I love my life so much more with you and your sisters in it.  Before you were even conceived, I knew you were out there.  I dreamed about you so many nights.  I couldn't wait to meet you.  But I knew you were out there waiting to come to our family.  Your Dad knew it too.  We talked about you a lot, for years before you ever came to our family.

I love how funny you are.  How you make us laugh when you try to act like your sisters.  When you fake laugh because you hear them laughing and it makes us all laugh even harder because you are forcing this funny fake laugh.  I love when you say grace at dinner time with your hands folded and your pointy finger out and you say, "thank you God for this and this and this and this and that and that and this.  Amen" as you point to everything on your plate and then around the table to your Dad and I and your sisters.

I wish I could keep you little forever because this has truly been one of the most precious moments in my life.  With all 3 of my girls around, I can't help but be so incredibly thankful for my life here on earth.  Your birth, sweet Sprout, is a gift from heaven.  My love for you reaches to heaven and back.

Your hair twirling, thumb sucking ways has all of us wrapped around your finger.  There isn't much we ever say no to when it comes to you - you're too cute and too sweet and too lovable.  Who could ever refuse you?  (although we do at times and you scold us terribly...which just makes all of us, including your sisters give in.  I'm sure we may regret that someday but for now, it just makes us smile).

Today is your birthday.  The day I became the mother of 3 wonderful little girls.  20 minutes after you were born, I asked if I could go home because I really was feeling quite fine and just wanted to take you home.  They made me stay exactly 24 hours...and then your Daddy packed you up and took us both home on a warm sunny Spring day where your grandparents and sisters were waiting for you.  (Your sisters were REALLY excited because they knew I had some "baby's homecoming gifts for THEM" and they couldn't wait to open their gifts!)  

On Easter Sunday, we celebrated your 3rd birthday with cousins and Aunts and Uncles and your grandparents.  You got a really cool Dora the Explorer bike that you squealed in delight when you saw it.  And I thought about how Easter, how we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus and the gift we were all given in that moment, a promise of everlasting life.  What better gift could we ever receive.

Happy Birthday sweet Sprout.  I love you all the way to heaven and back, infinity.

xoxo,

Momma

Happy Birthday to ME! {my birthday gift to you!}

Sigh.  Today is my birthday.  It's a big one.  {That's me when I turned 5.  A child of the 70's.  Listening to a vinyl record with my head phones that had this super long cord so I could dance around the room} When I went to Starbucks yesterday to spend my free drink birthday coupon, the girl says to me, "Oh enjoy it!  Your thirties will be great!".  I thought I would cry.  "Sweetheart," I replied, "I did enjoy my thirties".

With each year that I get older, my children also age with me which does make me a wee bit sad.  There's a picture I took several years ago and I so distinctly remember that day.  It was a casual afternoon, lounging on our front porch swing in the shade, eating ice cream and the sun was gorgeous.  We had been swimming.  The sounds and smells of that day are still very vivid in my memory.  I remember thinking then and still do now, that I pray that heaven is just like that day, like many days I've enjoyed with my kids.  It was so simple - laughter, sunlight, pure joy.  Just pure joy.

Now, I know!  You're saying, "You're turning 40 not dying!!".  I know, I know!!  But, it's not that I'm thinking of it in that way - what I'm thinking is that as you get older, what used to be important just doesn't seem to matter as much anymore.  You do have a perspective that is different from when you were in your 20's and you do find that simple pleasures and moments have such a deeper meaning.  I find myself relishing those moments more.  Not sweating the small stuff as much.  As I had reinforced at work recently, being in the moment. The slogan they told us to remember is "Be Here Now".  I find myself doing just that so much more often as I get older than I did when I was younger.  Being fully present in the moment.  Listening, feeling, being observant fully of the moment and treasuring it.  And in those moments, I do dream of the everlasting life that Christ has promised us.  And I smile widely.

SO...let's celebrate!

I've got a giveaway to offer to you!  Several in fact!  This birthday giveaway is open until Sunday night, March 27th, 2011 at midnight.

Birthday gift #1 : Winners Choice of 6 of my sewing patterns

Birthday gift #2: A Pocket Full of Posies Apron made by me (not in these exact colors but it will be super cute, promise!)  I wear an apron virtually everyday as I cook and clean at home.  Love them!

Birthday gift #3 : Stash of goodies!  A surprise bundle of fabrics and buttons and patterns and fun things for you add to your stash!

3 fun Birthday gifts for you!  Here's how you can enter...leave a separate comment for each one.  You can have up to 5 entries!

1)  Tweet this giveaway, something like "Happy Birthday to YOU! Check out the Two Peas Birthday giveaway at http://twopeasinapoddesigns.com" @trishpreston {use my @name so I can follow you!}

2) Blog about this giveaway.  Leave your blog address here in your comment so we can all come visit you

3)  Post this giveaway as your Facebook status and/or follow Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs on Facebook.

4 & 5) My birthday wish and worth two entries - a random act of kindness.  What?  I love doing this!  Our local radio station suggested buying the person behind you in the drive-thru line at Starbucks, etc, a cup of coffee - paying for their order.  I did that and it just makes you smile!  A few weeks ago - it happened to me!  I pulled up and the clerk said the person in front of me had paid for my coffee!  Weeks later, that still fills my heart with joy.  So incredibly nice!

So for two entries - perform a random act of kindness in celebration of YOUR birthday - of this year of our lives.  Buy someone a cup of coffee, take a meal to a friend who is in need, send a special note to a favorite teacher telling them you appreciate them, etc.  Then, tell us - INSPIRE US - with your act.  (For your second entry after you share - you can just leave a note that says "Random Act #2).

Go forth and Celebrate this day that the Lord has made!  Yea!  See you back here Monday morning for the giveaway winners, some Monday Morning Inspiration and next week - that belt and more flower tutorials!

xoxo,

Trish

It's a mystery Nancy Drew!

Busily prepping for my sweet twins 10th Birthday party...our theme, a Nancy Drew Mystery Party!  The mystery of the "Sock Monkey Kidnapper" and the invitations have been sent!  Inside the invite, each guest found an envelope marked, EVIDENCE with the details inside.

I've been scouring the interwebs for party ideas...got any suggestions?

I'll share all the details next week after the party!  Um, after I figure out exactly what we are doing!

xoxo,

Trish

 

And the winner is...

You are dying to know aren't ya??

Well, I am knee deep in Easter dress land.  Raise your hand if you also had the best of intentions for making your kids an Easter outfit and then just started this week, less than 7 days before Easter.  Uh, huh!  I see you out there.  Thank you for joining the "procrastinators sewing club".  Eee-gads!

If I had any more energy mustered up I might actually write something more but...I'm flat pooped.

I want to thank all of you for all the many Birthday wishes and for playing along with all our giveaways.  A super special thank you to Paige and Jo from Where Women Create, Bari J. Ackerman and Britt Lakin Photography for offering up such great giveaways.  Love you guys!

First up, Britt Lakin Photography giveaway!

True Random Number GeneratorMin: Max: Result: 1

Can you believe it?  Number 1?  Wow, pays to be the early bird Allison!

Next, four separate winners for the Two Peas in a Pod giveaway.

True Random Number GeneratorMin: Max: Result: 19  Sara (Mrs. Dude)

True Random Number GeneratorMin: Max: Result: 57  Karen Davis

True Random Number GeneratorMin: Max: Result: 15  Sarah B

True Random Number GeneratorMin: Max: Result: 50  Wendy

The Bari J. Sewing Patterns - a set of four

True Random Number GeneratorMin: Max: Result: 15  Liz M

And last, our friends at Where Women Create, a signed copy of their book and a bookmark

True Random Number GeneratorMin: Max: Result: 3 Lisa

If I'm lucky, our winners will see this post and contact me.  If not, give me a chance to come up for air from the threads flying and I'll email you to get your information and send out your gifts.

Thanks so very much you all!  I'll be back next week with 2 Sew It Up Sunday projects (I missed March because I was under the weather).  BUT if you can't wait until then...the latest issues of Sew Hip are out on the newstands - the second installment of my Pocket Full of Posies projects is out.  In issue 14, a great fun flower banner for Spring and Issue 15 a kitchen apron just right for your next garden party!  Sew Hip has a Flickr group too - if you make any of the projects you can post them there or with me!

xoxo,

Trish

Please excuse my jaw dragging on the floor

For real.  Because everytime I peer into the Where Women Create magazine, blog, etc, my jaw drops.

I love seeing the amazing spaces of all these talented women.

Where Women Create, Inspiring Work Spaces of Extraordinary Women, is a magazine created by Jo Packham and published by Stampington & Company.

I'm blessed enough to count the wonderful ladies at Where Women Create my friends.  Coming this September, they are putting on one heck of shindig.  Painting, sewing, felting, jewelry making...I love the little teacup pincushions Betz White is making.  The vintage tree toppers - are they cute or what?  I SO want to learn how to paint one of these too!  Love this journal, would be so cute to keep baby stories in.

Did I just totally get off subject?  I got distracted by the mention of sewing, painting, projects...ok, I'm back.

THIS SEPTEMBER as I was saying, Where Women Create is putting on this awesome event called The Creative Connection.  It promises to be the best time ever.  You gotta check out the class schedule.  I could spend a week there sewing up a storm with all those great people in one place at one time!

In celebration of my birthday week, Where Women Create is giving one of you this nice surprise!  Where Women Create, the book...AND

And this cute bookmark to go along with it.

Random.org will choose the winner next week, deadline to enter is March 31st at midnight.  To win this offering from Where Women Create, leave a comment for any or all of these:

1)  Become a follower at the Where Women Create blog

2) Add a Where Women Create button to your blog

3) Add The Creative Connection button to your blog

4) Tweet about this giveaway

Thanks everyone for celebrating with me this week!  Hope you enjoyed my birthday as much as I did!  Don't forget you have until next week to enter all of the giveaways from this week, just scroll back to find the posts from the last 3 days.

xoxo,

Trish

Bari J. - Keeping it Real

I heart Bari J.  I hold a special flame for my friend Bari because we are both bag ladies.  And I mean that in a good way.

Bari designs handbags and other cute little accessories.  I own a sweet little wristlet of hers that I adore.  But most recently Bari has ventured into sewing patterns.

When I was planning this birthday week of giveaways I knew there was one person I really wanted to include, Bari.  Bari has so many great things coming on the horizon and if you haven't been properly introduced well, consider that introduction done now.

She has an adorable project being published in the soon to be out book "Little Birds".  This is a book you will want if you sew and you like birds (my friend Renee would hate this book - she's deathly afraid of birds).  Bari has two beautiful fabric lines and another on the way from Windham fabrics.  She has new book she has authored that is currently in production as well.  The girl has a lot going on to say the least.

Bari has been generous enough to offer up for my birthday surprise today to one of you...a set of her new sewing patterns, all four!  How cool!  

This last one is my favorite.  Take a closer look.  That oven mitt is no ordinary oven mitt.  Check that out!  It's an art quilted oven mitt!  Isn't that fantastic!  Well, seeing that inspired me to share one of my favorite recipes with you.

I'm quite the soup maker if I do say so myself.  My friends and family have their favorites and make requests.  My kids LOVE my chicken tortilla soup the best.  I think it's my fav too.  You'll want to try this one out...and use your new made it yourself oven mitt of course!  (I believe you can click on this recipe to bring it to full size and then print...if you can't and you want me to email to you, let me know.

To take home the set of four patterns from Bari J., visit Bari's Open Sky Shop and come back here and tell us what your favorite find was.  That would be nice OR you can just leave a quick comment - tell Bari how much you love her new patterns, etc.  That's it!  This giveaway will be open until midnight on Wednesday, March 31st.  Random.org will choose the winner.  Good luck and if you try the soup - let me know what you think!

Don't forget to scroll back to enter the other giveaways this week and stay tuned for our last birthday giveaway tomorrow from Where Women Create!

xoxo,

Trish

Happy Birthday to...

{the giveaway for this post is now closed} ME!

Today is the day!  It's my birthday!  It's my birthday!  Put your hands in the air like ya just don't care!  Now everybody sssscream!!

Just kidding!  You can put your hands down now.  Stop screaming.  Really.  Stop.

I will be brief today because I'm preparing to spend the day off from work and hang out all day with my husband.  Something we haven't done in a long while.  (I hope he takes me to my favorite restaurant for lunch!  I'll tweet if he does!)

First, a giveaway.  From the Two Peas studio.

I had an idea that for my birthday I wanted to make something for the giveaway that I hadn't made before.  Something unique.  I thought...me, the working bloggy mom that I am, I'll make a laptop sleeve since mine is constantly in arms reach of me.  And how cool would it be to make it from a pair of mens pants, use the pocket to hold the cords, add a couple of mens ties.  In my head, it was a great idea and it looked good too.

In real life, what was a "swan" in my head, became this bit of an, I won't say ugly but let's just say "unique duckling"

Let's call it our "punk rock business as usual" laptop sleeve.  My sister said it was ugly.  As did my oldest and dearest friend whom I've known since the day I was born (we were neighbors growing up and born 4 days apart.  We like to say our Moms must have passed in the hall and we probably were bunk mates in the nursery)  Somebody out there has to love it.  I'm determined now more than ever to give it to a good loving home.  Where someone will love her not because of her outer beauty, but because of who she is on the inside.  A beautiful bag inside of a pair of mens pants and two ties.  Oh, now that's funny!

But wait folks, there's more!  Oh yes!  (I sound like one of those crazy info -mercials)  Because the bag turned out so crazy...I'm adding this one in too!

Wait...there's still more!!

Awhile back, Patty Young, textile designer extraordinaire, was tweeting about this.

It's hard to see how cool this is...Patty uploaded a few of her textile designs to this website and created a gelaskin for her iPhone.  I asked her if she could get a couple extra for me and she did...way back in November.  Because I knew, this would be cool for my birthday giveaway.  Yes, I planned this out that long ago.

This gelaskin will fit on your iPhone or iTouch.  It features a design from Patty's Flora and Fauna line.

3 Fun prizes...ok two for some of you...some may think they are all great.  And the last prize today...a shop credit from Two Peas for $25.

This giveaway will end next Wednesday, March 31st at midnight.  The winner will be chosen by mr. Random.org.  Here's what you need to do to enter:

Leave a comment each time you do one for multiple chances:

1)  Become a fan of my facebook page

2)  Subscribe to my blog (it's over there to the left in the sidebar)

3) Post this giveaway as your Facebook status and link back to this post.

4)  Tweet about this giveaway and link back to this post.

5)  Blog about this giveaway for TWO entries!

and last

6)  Visit my etsy store and tell me what your number one must have item is for Spring

Sound good?  All together 4 prizes.  The laptop sleeve that needs a good loving home, the clutch, the gelaskin, and the shop credit.

Birthdays are good, yes?

The fine print Yes, this giveaway IS open to our international friends with one little hitch...you gotta pay $6 shipping if you win either bag (which will help cover my shipping costs...international shipping can be really pricey so feel free to play along so long as you don't mind helping with the shipping expenses.   Free US shipping on all giveaways.  And Free international shipping for the gelaskin. )

Happy 37th to me, again!  Thanks for making my days such great ones - I really enjoy our network of crafty friends and moms!

And don't forget to scroll back to yesterdays post and get in on the Britt Lakin Photography giveaway

xoxo,

Trish

{capturing birthday memories in photographs}

Once upon a time, long, long ago...I was once this small. And no, this is not me pictured above.

But that was many moons ago and this week as I celebrate my "37th" birthday - it's a fun time to reflect back on so many previous birthday memories.  My girls were talking about last year when they completely draped the driveway in crepe paper so I couldn't pull in when I got home from work.  Then there was the year my husband had them write Happy Birthday on my cake with my age and had them cross it out and correct it twice...oh, that was SO funny.  Not.

Capturing memories in photographs is really important to me.  It's one of the reasons why I love this blog because it gives me reasons to take and share casual snapshots and stories that I think my kids might enjoy reading someday when they are my age and looking back.  I wish I was a better photographer...like Britt who took all these awesome snaps on this post.

Well, my birthday surprise to you today is...a wonderful photography session from Britt Lakin Photography.  

If you are located in the Columbus Ohio area, or are willing to travel to Columbus, then you are eligible to enter!  (Sorry to our friends outside of Columbus but I promise to have some more amazing giveaways this week open to everyone!)

Here's the scoop:

Giveaway for a free custom photo session! -May be used for couples, maternity, family, and children (no extended family). -1 hour of shoot time on location, here in Columbus Ohio. -15-20 edited high resolution images on CD with a personal copyright release -Photo Shoot must occur before July 31, 2010.

Here Are The Giveaway Guidelines: -You have 1 week to enter this giveaway (closes March 31st at 8pm) - The winner will be chosen via random.org and then announced on April 1st.

Here is how to enter:

There are lots of chances to enter! For each item, leave a comment that you did it.

1) Go to Britt's Facebook fan page and become a fan.

2) Post this link as your facebook status.  (then have link to this blog post)

3) Become a follower of Britt Lakin Photography blog.

4) Tweet the giveaway!

5) Post about this giveaway and link back here on your blog.

6) Become a follower of Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs blog.

7) Become a fan of Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs on Facebook

To learn more about Britt, you can check out her website. {click on her blog and scroll down - you'll get to see a lot more from our Two Peas photo shoot a couple of weekends ago!}

What I LOVE about Britt is that she is very passionate about the environment.  At home she composts, recycles, reduces, reuses, shops for items with sustainable packaging, and drives a hybrid.

"I feel that it is very important for businesses, even small ones, to be sustainable.  It excites me that I can extend my efforts into my photography business."

As a consumer, I love supporting businesses that are green.  I know that my dollars are going towards supporting a green industry and that my demand for businesses to act in sustainable ways will put pressure on ALL businesses to act green in order to stay competitve.  Britt does it because it's just who she is and I love that!

So jump in the giveaway and good luck!

xoxo,

Trish

First day of Spring and a BIG celebration week ahead!! For you!!

I just wanted to give you all a heads up...it's my birthday this week...you still have a few days to get me something if you really want to, I mean you don't have to but if you insist!  I love books, iTunes, fabric of course...thread, ric rac and notions and starbucks.  Oh and anything handmade...I just adore handmade trinkets (and pretty little aqua blue and pink table runners...Barb!  Hint!  hint!  Just kidding.  Not.)

...but for realz...for my birthday I'm going to be giving YOU all a little something.  Ok, a lot of something.

I have several giveaways planned.  Some tutorials.  A couple of delicious recipes.  It's gonna be a good week so you'll want to check back everyday to see what's going on and get in on the celebration.  Every day this next week I'll have a new post with something yummy or cute or inspiring...I hope you'll enjoy my birthday as much as me!  (And if you must know...I'm turning 37, again.  For the 3rd time.  What?  You don't have repeat birthdays?)

Truth is, if you remember back here where I wasn't feeling too hot, hormones and all...and you may have noticed I've backed way down on blogging lately - so this week will be a BIG jump into trying to get back into the swing of things.

I've been slowly working on feeling better.  I went to see my doctor and they ran all kinds of tests - most specifically for lupus and looking for early markers for cancer...I was feeling really bad.  Headaches everyday, GI symptoms, crying, fatigue that was off the charts, slurred speech because I was just that freaking tired...anyway, all of those tests came back good.  They did find that I was super low in Vitamin D, and few other things that go along with that plus a few oddities with a liver enzyme.  They are doing some more testing but in the short term...I've started taking over 2000mg of Vitamin D a day and maybe it's all in my head but, I am feeling better.  My headaches are down - instead of 7 days a week last week I only had headaches 4 days.  My tummy is off and on a bit better.  My fatigue feels more like normal overworked Mom tired.  Today was a rough day but most days I feel like I'm improving.  Thanks so much for all your well wishes - comments and emails and tweets.  That was really nice and I really appreciated the concern and support from everyone.  I'm blessed with a lot of wonderful friends in real life and here on the blog - thank you.

SO I'm just saying...this is gonna be a fun week on the Life is SEW nice with my Two Peas blog!  My friends over at Where Women Create have offered up a little something for my birthday celebration giveaway, Britt of Britt Lakin Photography has a super offer for everyone this week, I have a little something that Patty Young cooked up that I'll be giving away plus a few of my own goodies from the Two Peas shop.

Happy Birthday to me - and Happy Spring to you!  See you all this week!

xoxo,

Trish

Junior Ranger Party

The Two Peas recently turned 9 and we had a hard time deciding what to do for a party.  We finally were able to come up with the idea to have a "Jr. Ranger Party" and invite all of their friends to come along on a winter hike, etc. You could do this theme anytime of year and gear it for boys or girls.  We were lucky in that the two peas Dad happens to be a park ranger and the boss at the park where he works so we had "built in expertise!" for our event.

Invitations

A scrapbooker I am not.  I did have some scrapbook paper on hand and a few other do-dads.  I cut the paper and added some cardboard to the inside.  We decided we would stick to a nature theme.  I sewed on scraps to make a butterfly on the front and used some tags to write the number 9 and the two peas names.  We also personalized each invitation and put an initial sticker with the name of the girl being invited on the cover.

Cakes and Cupcakes

We had two parties.  One at home with family.  One at the park with friends.  For our friends party, we had cupcakes that I decorated with owls.  Yes.  Those are owls.  Kind of goofy looking.  I used gumdrops sliced in half for the eyes.  I put a chocolate chip in the middle of each one for the eyeball.  Then I sliced a candied fruit wedge thing in half for the wings.  And used Twizzlers rope for the talons and beak.

For our family party, we had owl cakes.  I used oreo cookies and chocolate chips for the eyes and the Twizzlers rope for the rest.

Decorations

For our family party, I just used some paper lanterns we had from our party last year. I found these in the wedding stuff from Martha Stewart  at Walmart in the craft section.  Near the scrapbook stuff.  I use them alot for parties.  I found the butterflys at our dollar store and pulled one inside of each lantern.

At our friends party, the ranger station was full of cool critters.

A balloon on each childs chair, bowls full of gummy worms on the table and we were all set.  Kept it simple.

Activities

For our friends party, the two peas Dad took everyone on a winter hike to look for signs of wildlife in the snow.  They were lucky enough to come upon a deer that was nestled down, they saw lots of birds and squirrels.  Hikes are easy to do.  You could ask your local park if their naturalist would offer a special hike for your group.  Or you could do it yourself.  Nature bingo is one fun hike theme.  Make a bingo card for each child and they have to search for what is on the card: a bird call, a large tree leaf, a small tree leaf, a nut that has been eaten on, something shiny, a bark rubbing, etc.

Once inside, we had some fun crafts to make.  Sticking with our nature theme...we used those fuse beads to make critters.  I had an owl, snake, flower and more as patterns for them to follow.  

We also made some pins to wear.  I twirled some crafty fur things (I'm not sure what they are called) into a circle, hot glued on a pin on the back and a little stick.  The girls then glued on the eyes, wings and a beak to make owls.

We planned our party to last for 2 hours.  We barely got it all in.  Another half hour would have been good.  By the time they hiked, crafted, ate cupcakes, rootbeer floats and yogurt tubes and opened gifts...we started to run out of time.

Party favors

I made a field bag for each girl.  A very simple bag.  Serge stitched and folding the top down to the outside, I put a decorative stitch around the cuff.  I put each childs name on the strap and appliqued and owl to the bag.  Each child got a monogrammed notebook to take on their hike and record their sightings.

It was a great party with very little preparation.  Easy to do, loads of fun.

xoxo,

Trish

Oh Little Pea...

I say, Oh Little Pea, in exasperation. Let me just share a bit about the day I had with Little Pea last week with you, ok?

The gardener was enjoying another birthday last week.  The snow had been cleared away enough so that the twins could go to school.  Little pea and I were chilling at home with plans to bake a cake and make the gardeners favorite meal - sweet and sour chicken.  I was also going to do a little nap time sewing.  That my dear friends, did not happen.  (inhale.  deep breath.  and breathing out my nose.  ok...ready to go on)

Picture this.  I'm in the kitchen.  Baking.  I throw something away in the garbage can.  As I moved the garbage can, it magically talked to me.

Odd isn't it?  That's what I thought.  I start to dig.

And I find Little Pea's brand new talking Miss Manners teapot she got for Christmas, in the garbage.  In there.  In with all the coffee grounds.  The dirty diapers.  The packaging from the chicken we had eaten the night before.  Ohhh yuck.  {cover your eyes - what comes next is not very nice - the retired cop talk in me} Well, that's not exactly what I said but I can tell you that it rhymes with yuck and I only said it to myself under my breath.

Just a teapot you say?  Why get so upset.  Um...yeah, here's why.

It was not just a teapot.

There was her new Leap Frog cell phone.

Some blocks.

A horse.

A plastic play plate.

Some plastic play food.

And her SHOES!  Her Robeez cute adorable leather faux mary jane shoes were in the garbage!

Now you see the reason why the profane language came in.

Had it not been for Miss Manners the talking teapot who said, "more please" when I moved the garbage can - all those things would have been on their way to the city dump.

So as I'm cleaning all of this up - remember - I'm baking cakes for the gardener, right?!  Um, only I in fact forgot that little detail and burned his cakes.  OK...another fun photo coming your way.

Yeah, see his cakes came out of the pan like...well, let me rephrase that.  In fact, they did NOT come out of the pan.  That was the biggest problem.  That and the blackness of the brown that wasn't supposed to be black.

K...moving on.  I decide...in my infinite wisdom, it all tastes the same.  I'm gonna ice it anyway and we can still eat it.  Right?  This is the part you shake your head and say, "No Trish.  NO!  Not right!".  Dang!  NOW you tell me!

I go ahead and ice the cake.

It tasted kind of funny but then again, I'm not a cake girl so I don't really like the stuff.  Too sweet for me.

And the ideas I had for decorating couldn't be done because of the um, uneven surfaces I had to work with on the cake.  It kind of looked like it had been stepped on.  You ready for another fun photo?  Oh yeah...here it is.

Would you eat that?  The Gardener came home from work.  Looked at the table with his cake, sunk his finger into the icing, looked at me and says, "Did you taste this?".  Well, yes, why?  He says, the icing is awful.  Nice.  He digs the can - um, cuz I'm not Sandra Lee, out of the garbage - the same garbage where all the toys had been - and says, "This can says best if used by March...2009".  It did sort of have an odd yellow tinge to it.  So, he blew out his candles and no one ate cake.

SO...how's your day going?  Better now that you read that fiasco, huh?!

xoxo,

Trish

ps a gazillion thanks to Paige for creating a blog button for me - feel free to grab the code and add to your site.  I'd be mighty appreciative!  And visit Paige while you're at it...she is a peach!  And part of the wonderful staff at Where Women Create...a place I love to visit!

{My sweet little one turns one...}

MMM! Cake!  She didn't actually like the cake - just the frosting and the ice cream. My sweet little Sprout turned one over the weekend.  We had a little lunch party with family and then went to see the twins in a musical, Noyee's Fludde, at church.  Big crazy day but fun!

The best is that the day was so sunny and perfect we went outside.  I "tried" to put Sprout in the grass and she completely freaked out.  Wouldn't let her feet touch, started to shake, cry, wave her hands about wildly.  Is this a common baby thing?  I mean, we LIVE outdoors so this can't be good...

Her favorite gift - a toothbrush.  She LOVED the toothbrush that her Grandma gave her - it was too funny!  Would NOT let it go, for ANYTHING!

In case you can't tell, they were wolves - you know, two by two, they went into the Ark.  This was my feeble attempt at a costume!

I also tried to come up with a couple of new designs...which requires several tries typically.  Hence why this little purse went to a friend of the neighbor to give her little girl.  I know, I know...it's lopsided.  Hello?!  That's why its a design sample!  I freehand cut this stuff and who knows what will happen with it.  Any thoughts?  Like, love, hate?  Not sure where to go with this one...

New crazy design...hmmm, back to the drawing board

The little wristlet one I like very much - but it is also all crazy lopsided.  I'll figure it out sooner or later.

Be sure to check out the etsy site because I have loaded both adult and kids embellished vintage like shirts over there - they are $15 and $16 and right now, FREE SHIPPING!  Can't beat it for cute-ness like this and I'll have more designs coming soon.

Love this fabric from Robyn Pandolf

At the moment, I've been busy with color palettes, and naming collections, and looking over proofs for my fabric designs.  Quilt Market is in a couple of weeks and I'm gonna try like heck to get in there and get on board with one of the textile mills to produce my designs.  Wish me luck - prayers preferred since really luck has nothing to do with it.  The gardners' Aunt Carla is coming with me to help with Sprout while I'm chatting up with design directors.

It's been fun to choose my colorways and see my artwork get digitized.  I just hope somebody else likes it besides me!

Anybody using the placemat tutorial I posted?  Share your photos if you do!  Later this week I'll post our April giveaway winner so stay tuned and don't forget to keep in touch!  We'll have something else fun to giveaway for May - one of my t-shirts!

Happy Monday,

Trish xo

Giveaway and another year...going, going....

Almost gone! First, a giveaway and the time is almost gone! I have a sweet little spring hipster (see the fabric selection in the previous post) waiting to find a new home. Post a comment or send me an email and we'll put your name in a hat for this little bag. The winner will get their bag shipped out to them next week. SO COMMENT NOW!! OK...and so, another year has come and gone. I celebrated a birthday last week and I'm crazy crepe papernot exactly thrilled at the aspect of moving ever so closer to...gulp, 40. I mean, really, 40?! I still have a few years left but it's out there, looming ahead and just waiting to snatch me up into its clutches. So when I woke up to yet another birthday this week, I have to say I was not feeling all that chipper about the day.

I went off to work and sat in my office in silence most of the day. Our students are off on Spring Break and so most of them are out sunning on a beach somewhere or hiking in the mountains. Nothing exciting about the day. Just an ordinary day. But wait...

I knew something was up when I called my sister on my commute home. She said, as we were about to sign off, "have fun tonight with everything". What everything? What are you talking about? She says, "oh, I don't know." I asked her, what do you know - did you call my house? She said, I might have called your house. Just have fun, ok. Smiling to myself, I pull down our street and promptly lose cell connection (you've heard me groan before about all of this right? We have no internet, no cable and very intermittent cell connection from our house. Drives me nuts!).

I pull up to our driveway and I wonder...why has someone marked the trees? They had tape around them - or so I thought. When I actually pulled in I realize that my entire driveway has crepe paper strewn from tree to tree that goes back and forth blocking the entire length of the driveway. My twins are standing in the doorway yelling "drive through it! drive through it!" and jumping up and down laughing and screaming as I drive slowly through all of the paper and get to a garage that is equally covered! Too fun!

I enter into our house - same thing! A combination of crepe paper, christmas garland, easter decorations and birthday balloons everywhere. They had a delicious lasagna dinner waiting for me compliments of my MIL, and a cake that had dots (?), yes those are my favorite polka dots on there, and my "birdies" that I applique on various things. The girls did the design work and I think it was quite clever. They presented me with a new hummingbird feeder, garden gloves, a bracelet and earrings, and my hubby gave me a dozen roses. I have to say, my blah, blah, blah birthday turned out to be the best ever. I "heart" my family - especially my husband. All that effort meant a TON to me...thanks.

Also this week - just pure random-ness here - Sprouts hair has been wild. Wild!Crazy! She's been sporting this crazy hair all week and I keep wetting it down and it pops back up! Too funny. But with her hair getting longer I can finally really use the barrettes I bought from Suann at Bows and Blossoms. They stay put - well - when she isn't pulling it out - and I love this one with her initial on it. Suann makes uber cute things, super great price and SUPER fast shipping. Check out her site here because she has some of the cutest new things for Spring.Go Bucks bow

Coming up next - bunny tutorial!

A little something you can handstitch for the easter baskets or decorate your table with or just love on! Fun!

Ciao! xo, Trish