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My Life Story

Ok, so it's not my WHOLE life, but since I've been in a serious crafting funk lately, I'm entertaining you with stories of my life! Isn't this fun? Well, at least it is for me!

I was born and raised in Maryland, and I loved it. I love the humidity, I love bright green plants, I love driving through tree tunnels, I love the diversity, I love being so close to D.C., I just love it. It's so...not boring over there. I miss it a lot, the east coast is the place to be! I'm the oldest of 4 kids, I have two brothers and a sister. Jordan is 20, and he's currently serving a 2 year mission for our church (LDS/Mormon) in Seattle, Washington. I miss him, I haven't seen him for almost a year. Brandon will be a senior in high school and he is one of the smartest and funniest kids I know. Allie is going to a be a freshman in high school and does everything: gymnastics, cheerleading, multiple theater productions, she's on fi-yuh! My dad is super smart and full of stories and edits documents that most people couldn't even understand. My mom is a substitute (like me!) and is a very talented seamstress and taught me a lot of what I know now. I also have a cat, Jellybean, and I love her more than a human should love an animal.

Brandon, Jordan, David, Dad
Allie, me, Mom

My sweet baby Jellybean!!!!!

I also have a great set of in-laws. They live a half hour away from my family back home and it's great! I love being able to see my family and David's family. He is the oldest of four and has three younger sisters. Chrisie is attending BYU and is about to finish her degree. Elisa has her own horse and is a very talent rider. Carolyn is in middle school and is the baby of the family. His dad is a computer programmer and his mom is a very talented wood crafter.

From the left: David's mom, David's Dad, David, me, Elisa, Carolyn, and Chrisie. 

I used wedding pictures because they're really the only ones I have where everyone is together. It's hard with so many of us living in different states. 

Anyway, moving forward in life. In elementary school I wanted to be an artist. I still do, I love drawing, painting, sketching and sculpting. I loved school, and I was very friendly. My 8th birthday party had to be held outside because everyone wouldn't fit inside! (Good thing I have a spring birthday huh?) I participated in a lot of sports (even karate!) but I loved gymnastics the most. 

In middle school I started to solidify my interests, taking art classes and a sewing class. I loved both, but after a little mishap with the sewing machine (I sewed my finger, full story here) I stuck with art (a little less hazardous). In high school I took up different sports after I "retired" from gymnastics (gymnasts peak really, really young in life, and usually "retire" very young as well). I ran cross country, long and short distance track, and I managed the tennis team. I took pottery classes to expand my artistic horizon, but I found that my real passion was with teaching. I took child development and I taught at a preschool and realized I loved it, so that's what I decided to major in in college. I was even lucky enough to combine my love for art and my love for teaching into one job as an art teacher at summer camp.

I LOVED college. I went to BYU-Idaho and graduated last year. I met some of the most amazing people and had the time of my life! My first two years were spent dating (no kidding here, I was a HUGE flirt and I went on dates with anyone and everyone. I once went on three dates in a day and five dates in one weekend (all with different people, I should add). I was extremely social, my weekends were never dull. Yet, I still managed to get good grades. I got lucky! Just before my junior year I met my husband at an airport (full, and very good story I might add, here.) We fell in love and were married the next year. Since then I have finished college and have a degree in Elementary Education and David will be done in July. 

Since I'm graduated and have free time for the first time in...forever, I took up crafting. I love creating, I love sewing, I love drawing, and I'm taking advantage of all my free time to indulge my interests! 

So that's my life! Hope it was at least semi interesting. :) Enjoy your hump day!

Update: Just because, here is a list of things I love.
I love David.
I love my family (all of them!).
I love my church.
I love cats (ESP my Jellybean!).
I love pink.
I love sewing, crafting, and cooking. 
I love tiny things.
I love going to the movies.
I love old men.
I love Salem Saberhagen.
I love free stuff.
I love thunderstorms. 
I love macaroni and cheese.
I love thrift stores.
I love checking the mail (ESP when there is a package for me. :D)
I love a clean house.
I love lemonade. 
I love buying fabric.
I love spring.
I love a lot of things, I'll probably add more later :)

Things I don't love...
I don't like bees, I am terrified of them.
I don't like jerk drivers.
I don't like moving.
I don't like being ignored.
I don't like it when characters I like are killed on shows I watch. 

Linking up to Crystal's Challenge!


Sorry Folks

I've been sick all week. Again. On Sundays the hubs and I work in Nursery (for my non-LDS readers, Nursery is basically a free babysitting service for children 18 months to three years during church hours) and this is the second time I've gotten sick after working. We tell the parents not to bring their children in if they are sick or experiencing certain symptoms because there are 15 very young children is a small room for a few hours and it's very easy to spread germs...but they still bring them in. I can understand wanting to be free of your young child for a few hours without having to pay but it's not fair to us Nursery workers or the other kids to be exposed to sicknesses like this. Sigh. So, that's why I've been boring, I have no energy to do anything. Can't wait till I'm over this. Sorry to complain, hope everyone else is having a good weekend! :)


Am I allowed to think something I made is cute?

Because I kind of do. For some reason I've been in a "mine" stage. I don't know what else to call it, I've been wanting to design things, and only make things that I designed. Most of my craftyness is a combination of something that I thought up and things that I saw online that I liked. But lately, it's only been "my" things. So, this is what I've come up with.

This is my "alium." Really simple, I just traced circular things I had in the house. I'm experimenting with anti-pill fleece (left) and regular fleece (right.) I actually think that the anti-pill looks more "old" and worn out. But sadly, I have almost a yard of it to use. I'll be using some of it on another version of...

This! I call him Steggy. Stegosauruses are my favorite dinosaur. Obviously this one was a little more complex so there are still kinks to work out with my pattern (notice the awkward tail...the spikes got stuck in the tail and now it's all weird!) But i think it's cute. I'll try it with the fleece next, for this one I just used scraps of cotton since I knew I would have to alter some things.


The Makeup Birthday Weekend

Since David pretty much got shafted last weekend for his birthday, we made up for it this weekend! The nearest "big city" is Idaho Falls, about a half hour away from our tiny Rexburg, so we usually spend our fun days in Idaho Falls. We had a blast!

Secret about me: I'm a sucker for cute old men. In Barnes and Nobel we met Alan E. Gray at his book signing. He was one of the cutest and nicest old men I've ever met! We chatted for a while and it was really fun. I just love the stories that they tell.

David has been wanting a juicer forever, and he decided that's what he wanted to spend his money on. We shopped around a lot, and noticed this fail on one of the boxes. No thanks, I don't want any "beat" juice, but I'd be ok with some beet juice! You'd think that a big company would notice a spelling error like this! Don't they have editors? We laughed.

 We eventually decided on a juicer we liked, and we've used it three times already. We made apple juice, cantaloupe/mango/mint juice, but my favorite had been the lemonade. We bought four pounds (yes, pounds) of lemons and peeled (it was so strange to peel a lemon...) them and threw them in. It yielded a ton of lemon juice to make a ton of lemonade! We learned that lemonade is a very exact science, we tried out recipes combined with trial and error and spent like 45 minutes trying to make the perfect lemonade. During the process I tested the lemon juice to see how potent it was. Now, I am very much a sour person, my ideal sour candy will burn the taste buds off my tongue with just a few candies, so I thought I could handle tasting it more than anyone else. I was wrong, it was SOUR!! I can't even remember the last time I puckered because something was sour, but this lemon juice made me do it! It was fun, and I don't think I'll ever go back to fake lemonade again!

If you read my blog regularly and/or and have known me for a while, you know that my word of choice to convey excitement is "huzzah." Not many people use it, so I was pretty excited to see this!

Ever seen the show Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives? This diner, Dixie's Diner, was featured on it! We wanted to visit this "famous" diner as part of our adventure.

 It was too cute! It had a working jukebox and everything! And the food was delicious!!!

We tried to order more "authentic" diner food. I got a chili, cheese, kraut dog and David got a delicious sammie (sandwich, that is). I can def see why this diner was on the show, such good food!!

Idaho is big on huckleberries, so we got a huckleberry milkshake. It even had real berries in the mix! If you've never had a huckleberry before try and find them. They're delicious, like a cross between a blueberry and a blackberry.

I think he enjoyed his makeup birthday weekend. :)


Dad's Reuben Sandwiches

Do you know what is bliss? My dad's Reuben Sandwiches. And my bliss, I mean like died-and-gone-to-heaven bliss. I mean I-could-eat-this-everyday bliss. I mean OH-MY-GOSH bliss. SO GOOD. The funny thing is...I don't like most of the ingredients in Reuben Sandwiches by themselves. HATE Swiss cheese, not fond of rye, corned beef is gross. Yet...these ooey, gooey, artery cloggers are SO incredibly delicious. I've had Reubens at restaurants but none of them were as yummy as these. Maybe because I find thousand island dressing to be disgusting...and this perfect recipe has none! But...I guess if you want, you can taint the perfectness of this recipe with thousand island to make it more authentic...but, I don't recommend it.

Dad's Reuben Sandwiches (makes 4)
8 slices Russian rye bread
1 12 oz can corned beef
4-8 slices Swiss cheese (depends on how cheesy you like your sandwich, I use 2 per sandwich myself :D)
1 14.5 oz can sauerkraut
mayo (I also use mustard)

Spread mayo onto bread slices. Add Swiss cheese then sauerkraut. Slice corned beef into about 8 slices (this is easier if it's refrigerated for 30 minutes or so) and place on top of sauerkraut. Add second slice of bread to make a sandwich. Liberally butter outsides of sandwich. Heat butter in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sandwiches and fry until golden brown (a few minutes). Flip, fry on other side until golden brown. The cheese should be melted and the inside warm. Serve immediately. Now, I mean so immediately, that you should have everyone already at the table eating their veggies and then as soon as the sandwiches are done, put them on their plates. There should be no down time between cooking at eating! :)

OMG!!! There are not many things I love more than this sandwich. Even if you don't like Reubens, I suggest trying it anyway. I don't like any of these ingredients alone, but together, it's magic.

UH-MAZE-ING!!!!!! I made them for dinner the other night, and I'm making one now for lunch. :D


He's home! :)

Even though he missed his flight, the hubs made it home Saturday evening. I was really bummed, I had the entire day planned out (breakfast in bed, fishing, presents, Idaho Falls adventures, dinner, movie) but since he got home much later, we only had time for dinner.

He loves Red Robin and before I was married, Red Robin was always the choice for birthday dinners. Throw in the gift card from his mom, and it was a perfect dinner!

I don't know how many of you know this, but mac and cheese is my favorite food. Has been since I was two. I LOVE mac and cheese. I usually don't order it in restaurant, since I can make it myself very easily, but this one sounded too good to pass up. I was so right, this mac and cheese was sooo delicious!!

 For dessert, we had the banana ice cream I made! To jazz it up, I also added chocolate chips. Without an ice cream maker it turned out a little bit ice crystal-y, but overall I think it was a success!!

 (Pre frozen, but still delicious!!)

 And I finished David's robe! The duckies really were for my own amusement...but I think he likes it, he's actually used it! It was def the longest project I've taken on, but it wasn't the hardest! I might even make another one! (Isn't he so cute with his messed up, wet hair??)

We saw this shirt while we were out and I want to recreate it, I think it's sooo cute. (Wasn't on sale, so I didn't buy it).

Even though it was short, I think he had a good day. :) Until next time!


Our Story

An old friend requested that I post the story of how David and I met on my blog. I was happy to oblige, I don't mean to brag (ok, maybe I do a LITTLE) but I think David and I have a pretty good story. :) So, here is it! The very long (VERY long) version of how I met the love of my life. :)

It was 9.7.07 and I was sitting in the terminal at BWI, waiting for my flight to come. I was flying out west, getting ready to start my junior year at BYU-Idaho. I'm reading one of my favorite books (The  secret Journal of Brett Colton, which I always read when I travel), when I hear a voice ask me "Are you Mormon?" I look up from my book, pleasantly surprised that a good-looking guy belonged to the voice. I inform him that yes, in fact, I was Mormon, and get back to my book. Before I could even read a sentence, he talks again.

"That's cool. So am I! Do you go to BYU-Idaho?" he asked.

I peer down at the BYU-Idaho T-shirt I donned, almost snapped him a sarcastic answer, but told him that yes, in fact, I did go to BYU-Idaho. (Mini-intermission story! It was my Dad's idea to have me wear that shirt. My freshman year of college, he told me that if you wear a distinguishing shirt, such as a college or a concert t-shirt, you would attract people with similar interests and be able to strike up conversations.  As a result, I ALWAYS wore the exact same BYU-Idaho t-shirt when I traveled. So, thanks Dad, for helping my find my husband. :)

"That's cool. So do I." he wittingly replied.

"Wonderful" I responded, and, once again, tried to read my book. But alas, he kept talking to me and wouldn't stop!! We were flying Southwest which has open seating, and my section was called to board before his was. I thought I could escape him by sitting by the window and staring outside until everyone boarded. But no. The one and ONLY time I look up, he passed by. At that exact moment! He asked if the seat next to me was taken, and since it wouldn't have been very moral to lie, I told him that it wasn't and that he could sit there. All the while worrying what in the world I was gonna do with this guy that wouldn't shut up for the next five hour long flight. I shoved my headphones in as soon as I was able to prevent him from talking to me anymore, and soon fell asleep. I awoke just an hour later, and he "woke up" at precisely the same moment I did. Watching me sleep? I think so. Before I could even rub my eyes he pounced on me, asking me every question that popped into his head. I can't exactly say we "hit it off," but, between you and me, I knew that I was going to marry him during that plane ride. Believe me, I dismissed the thought (I had a boyfriend at the time) and I began to think I was a little crazy, but I knew that he would eventually be my husband.

Finally the plane landed, and though we had a long but pleasant conversation (which included Potter Puppet Pals), I was ready to escape the weirdo. I said goodbye and hurried off to baggage claim, hoping mine would come quickly so I could leave. However, my plans were foiled once again. I found my Grandpa who had come ot pick me up, and he came running up to me and oh-so-boldly asked me for my number (in front of my Grandpa!). My brain told me no, after all, he was a stranger and who knew what kind of person he really was, but for some reason my mouth formed the word "yes." Doomed. I gave him my number and never expected to hear from him. Guessing wrongly seemed to be the trend early in our relationship.

A few days later some friends and I decided to get a group together and go to the cheap theater in town and see Ratatouille. Since school hadn't started yet and I hadn't had the chance to meet cute new boys (did I mention that my relationship with my boyfriend was in the toilet?), I decided "What the heck, I don't know anybody else" and invited him to come. He texted me during the entire movie. Good thing I had already seen it. :) And thus began our constant text fest. Whoever said you can't build a good relationship through texting obviously never met us. We became good friends fast, he made me want to be a better person.

He gave me the final push to dump my boyfriend and start over and was right there waiting to sweep me up again. (Literally, MINUTES later.) I wasn't ready, I had JUST dumped my boyfriend of two years and I just wasn't ready to date again. I told him I needed time.  I got back home and told the story to my roommate (and very best friend). She confessed to me that she was developing a crush on David, and asked if she could go after him. I didn't like him (yet...) and I had basically just dumped him, so, I gave her the go. Biggest mistake of my life.

We became closer and closer, and I was falling for him more and more every day. It was clear that he still wanted me, but I didn’t want to betray my best friend by “taking” him away, so I didn’t do anything. I couldn’t! By Halloween, I was completely smitten. But I couldn't tell HIM (or my roommate…)that, I had already told him (and her!) I didn't want him. Oops. I kept it to myself but by Thanksgiving I was going completely mad not having him as my own. His 10 day absence during Thanksgiving break made it quite clear that I was absolutely in love with him; I had basically lost my will to live without him there. At this point he noticed that I had it bad, and he decided to re-attempt dating me. He finally succeeded, and we began officially dating in December.

You know how it is. Long walks on the beach, romantic poetry by candlelight, and all that jazz. Except it was Rexburg. In winter. So it was more like long walks trying not to slip and fall all the while laughing at the others attempts to stay up, and cute guitar songs played in my living room. A rather cute courtship, if I do say so myself. :) As the seasons progressed, it became clearer and clearer that any day without him wasn’t worth living. Apparently he thought the same.

On 7.18.08 I was returning to Idaho from a week long trip to Utah. When I arrived late that night, I only had untill noon the next day to pack up all my stuff and clean my entire apartment before my contract ended and I was kicked out. I had to hurry, but David decided it would be fun to completely ruin my plans. I was able to pack for a few hours until he announced that we "needed a break." We went up to a small field by a church where we often go to look at the stars. He brought three things with him: his laptop, a blanket to lay on, and shapless bundle. He laid out the blanket and told me how he had discovered he could make movies on his computer, and proceeded to show me a cute montage of pictures of us set to "our song." Of course it was adorable, and after a second time he turned his attention towards the odd looking object. He explained to me that this "present" had a poem inside of it he wanted me to read. I pulled a toy plane from the old t-shirt he had wrapped it in, and inside the cockpit was a folded up piece of paper, as well as a wadded up piece of the t-shirt. :D I read the adorable poem, and then unraveled the beautiful ring!! He took it from my hands and proceeded to propose. :) We were married 12.19.08 and it has been bliss.

I love this picture from our wedding for three reasons. 1) I think we look so blissfully happy. 2) The special editing looks pretty. 3) You can see my brothers in the background chatting and having a great time, but David and I are too into each other to notice. :)


Happy 25th Birthday David!!

Today is the hubs 25th birthday! The majority of his trip away has been bearable, but today I really miss him. Last year I was Girls Camp director, and Girls Camp happened during his birthday. I was able to sneak home for a few hours, but I was sad because it's his special day you know? I wanted to make it special! This year I was excited because I wasn't going to have anything to do, but then his expedition overlapped! I don't know, I just feel bad, it's his day and I can't do anything for him except call him (which I did, at midnight :D). We're going to celebrate tomorrow (he gets home late tonight...I mean early tomorrow morning!) but it's just not the same. It's funny, I'm the one getting all sad about this, he doesn't care at all. :P

(Don't you love it when you find a song that EXACTLY portrays how your feeling? Incubus-I Miss You, does exactly that. Every single word!!!)

On a happier note, I also conquered another pattern!! Simplicity 5314, A. It took a while, but I wasn't on the phone nearly as long with my mom this time (not that I don't like talking to my mom...)! And I wasn't nearly as frustrated! I'm getting better! Woot!! I'll make David model it and post a picture later.

And just because he's so handsome...

This is his birthday last year, I made him a chocolate cake with chocolate icing, all from scratch! It was a real learning experience for me! This year I'm making him homemade banana ice cream...I hope he likes it!

Bad News....David missed his flight. I hate everything right now. :(


Easy Peasy No-Sew Flower Pins

I don't think I've ever updated my blog this much. But I have an excuse, I can't sleep! It's just one of those nights. So, I thought I would show you what I made this weekend!

I was lucky enough to snag this bag of trim at the local thrift store in town.

Two bucks for all of this! I was really excited, even though I didn't have any idea what I would do with it. I'm not a quilt-maker, nor am I currently involved with any projects that would require lace or trim of any kind. So, I started playing around with it, and eventually came up with...

...these! Flower pins! As much as I love sewing, I loved that these required none. Super easy, super fast, super cheap! (Some trim can go for as little as 27 cents a yard, and I used about a foot of trim in each flower. Talk about a bargain!) Using the existing ruffles and other patterns from the trim helped make each one unique. I really like how they turned out!

Updated Note: When I was linking up to Tea Rose Home's Linky Party, I noticed that she and several other bloggers recently participated in a challenge at M&J Trims where each participant received a box of trims and were challenged to make something out of what was in the box. Many participants made flowers out of their trims to include in other projects. I just want to clarify that I am not trying to pass off another's idea as my own. The following tutorial is the result of my own playing around with extra trims that I bought at the thrift store. Thank you.

Want to make one of your own? You will need the following:

Trim of your choice (I used about a foot (12 inches) in each of my single layer flowers.)
Coordinating felt (enough for a 1'' diameter circle)
Hot glue gun
Pin back (can be found at most craft stores)
Accent for the middle (I used a button and other accents that I found in my stash)

Got everything? Great! Onto the next step.

Cut a one inch circle out of your felt. It doesn't have to be perfect, it is likely you will be trimming it down after you're done gluing.

Next, glue down the edge of your trim with a dot of hot glue (you really don't need much). Begin making small pleats by folding the trim over back onto itself and securing with another dot of hot glue. Remember, the smaller you make your pleats, the smaller the ruffles will be, and the more trim you will need to go around the felt circle.

Don't forget to glue the trim onto the circle every few pleats!

Continue to make pleats all the way around the felt, following the curve of the circle.

Trim off any extra trim (haha!), but make sure to leave enough to fold under.

Fold the edge of the trim under (to hide any raw edges) and glue in place.

Add the center of your flower, whatever floats your boat!

Turn flower over and trim off any excess felt to reduce bulk. Glue the pin back on and you're done!!

Pin them anywhere that needs a little bit of "prettying up." These flowers are really easy and customizable, use whatever you have on hand and make it your own! I experimented with doubling up the trims (As seen in the lace one. And please, if you are using lace trim, don't burn your fingers when you push the trim down on the hot glue like I did, it hurts) and making individual petals of a flower (not pictured). The possibilities really are endless, these are just what I came up with in the half hour I was experimenting. I plan on creating more, just as soon as all of these birthdays pass (starting yesterday I have my brother, my mom, my husband, and one of my best friend's birthday's in the space of five days. I've got a lot of creating/planning/shipping to do!)

Did anyone notice the tiny little stars stitched onto this trim? It's my favorite part, stars are one of my favorite things and when I noticed it I was so giddy! It's the little things in life. :)

Also, if you happen to make any flowers out of this tute, I would LOVE to see what you came up with! Leave me a link to your blog if you posted it, or email me! Amikins48(at)gmail(dot)com. Happy crafting!

I'm linking up to:





Show and Tell Green

Alone for the week

Early, early this morning this morning I said farewell to the hubs for the week. He's headed to D.C. on an expedition to find an internship and he'll be gone until Saturday, I miss him already. :( It's a really good opportunity for him though, he's got TONS of interviews lined up with some of the top accounting firms in the country (three of the "Big Four!") and the prospects are really high. He even has one of those all day interviews lined up where they take interviewees (is that a word?) out to lunch! I'm really excited for him, he's so motivated to get a good internship and I have a feeling he's going to come home with a great one. :) And lucky him, he's also going to get to see our families! We are so blessed to have both of our families live so close to each other.

I really admire all you army wives and other wives that have husbands who are gone for extended periods of time. What's the secret? I'm having a hard time with it, we don't have kids, or a pet, and since school is out for the summer I don't have a job either (working on that though). I'm just home all the time, with nothing to do. I guess that makes it worse, keeping busy has always helped when we've been apart in the past. Still, I can't wait for him to come home. Four more days!

A picture from his website. He's just so handsome all dressed up!