Just Like Goober

A working suburban mom, a curious baby boy, and a whole lotta life

Who wants a Silhouette? December 29, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Merrsidotes @ 1:10 pm
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Well, me for one. But probably you too. So here is a list of a lot of places giving one away this week. Good luck!


Saturday Sentiment- Santa Claus Edition December 24, 2011

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My oh my, how things have changed!






18 months December 21, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Merrsidotes @ 2:39 pm
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Almost two weeks late, but here it is anyway. My baby is 18 months old!

Height: 32.75 in, 70th percentile

Weight: 24lbs 6oz, 40th percentile

Words: (we’re going to have to break these into categories, there’s a lot!)

Animals: Dog, Cow, Duck, Goose, Chicken, Bird, Owl, Fish, EE (monkey), Efant (elephant), gaffe (giraffe), Lion, Hippo

Animal Sounds:Woof, Mow (meow), Moo, Quack, Honk, Bawk, Baa, Mehh (goat), Gobble Gobble, Whooo, Neigh, Roar,

People: Mommy, Dada, Gamma, Nana, PaPa, Kathy, Ree Ree (Renee), Sue, Uncle, Dave, Elmo, Baby, Ho Ho (santa),

Food: Apple, Nana (banana), Oge (orange or clementine), Pear, Pie(!), Hotdog, Pizza, Cookie, Water, Milk, Juice

Other words: Bath, Eat, Comb, Brush, Poop(!), Toilet, Light, Stairs (only for downstairs), Tree, Out, NO, Mote (remote), Puh Puh Puh (please. He makes the P sound over and over), Thanks, Nigh Nigh

Dear Goober,

Since your first birthday, you have exploded in growth and development. You started walking a week after you turned 1, and very quickly went to running and climbing. You climb beds, chairs, stools, tables, couches, bookshelves…you name it, you’ve probably tried to climb it. You can hoist yourself up using just your arms, so you’ve got pretty strong little muscles. You’re crazy smart, in all the ways that terrify us. You can figure out a problem, like getting your pacifiers from the top of the book shelf by climbing onto the rocking chair, and then balancing on the arm of the rocker to reach the shelf. Or that if you sit under a glass table top, you can push the glass up and off the table. You love lights, like really really LOVE lights. You’re obsessed with plugging and unplugging cords from outlets, a habit which gives Momma a heart attack.

Speaking of Momma, you’ve started calling me Mommy, much to my dismay, and left “Momma” behind. Around 13 months your vocabulary took off. It’s no coincidence, I’m sure, that this was the same time that your Daddy started watching you full time and you started spending a lot of time with your Daddy as well as your Grandma Pat and Grandpa Jim. First with animals and animal sounds, then with all sorts of things. You really started to learn the names of your family, and you do this thing that your Dad and I call “Roll Call”, where you randomly start listing off all the people who’s names you know. It’s adorable.

You’ve gotten taller, but haven’t gained too much weight. We can’t really tell whose family your taking after most, your features vary just enough to keep us guessing. You’ve started watching a little tv, despite my insistence that we wouldn’t expose you to it till you were 2, and you currently have a morning routine that involves you and a banana on my lap with some Sesame Street. It’s a nice routine and it’s nice to have some time with just the two of us before Daddy gets up and I go to work.

You love playing on your slide and your rocking horse. You read books and you build with blocks. You still enjoy hearing music, but not as much as you did when you were smaller. You LOVE to be outside. You love the dog and cat and accost them frequently by throwing yourself on them, an action tolerated by the dog and feared by the cat. You still hate getting your diaper or clothes changed and you make it very difficult to do. You are sleeping through the night 90% of the time, generally going to bed at 8pm and waking up around 6am. You still take a pacifier, but only for sleeping. You try to sneak it outside of sleep time, but you reluctantly give it up when I catch you. You’re in a bit of a destruction phase, you like to tear up paper books, loose paper, mail, etc. We’ve had to put away all non-board books.

You love your family. You love spending time with your grandparents and aunts. Since you spend all day with your Dad and I work, you tend to cling pretty close to me when I’m home. It makes it hard to be productive, but I don’t mind too much. You learned “No!” awhile back and you’re not afraid to use it. You’re pretty strong willed, but very sweet. You’re growing up so fast, it makes my head hurt just trying to keep up, but I can’t wait to see what’s next.




Photo credit to Kara Proehl at Bright Shot Photography


Ruffled Christmas Tree Slipcover December 16, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Merrsidotes @ 1:04 pm
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Two craft posts in a row?? It’s like I have my act together or something. Crazy!

So when I first saw Linda’s Ruffle Christmas Trees, I knew I had to make them. They’re just so cute and fun. However I didn’t have a sewing machine, so these little beauties ended up being the final straw on the camel’s back. I had some Amazon gift cards I was saving for a Kindle Fire (which I still covet), but I decided I wanted a sewing machine more, so I cashed those puppies in for my lovely little Brother. While I was on Amazon, I decided that my life would be more complete with a ruffler, such as is suggested for the Ruffle Trees, so I threw that into my cart as well.

Step 1: Acquire sewing machine and ruffler foot. CHECK!

MAH PRECIOUS (channeling Gollum) new toys arrived within two days(!) but as I mentioned before, I had this little paper due that encompassed my entire grade for the class, so they sat alone in the basement, in their boxes for almost a week. While biding my time, I did read the entire sewing machine manual online in between paper research stints. Once I was able to break it open, it didn’t take me too long to get everything hooked up, threaded, and running. After making my felt bow, I felt I was ready to take on THE RUFFLER (spoken like a WWF announcer). Because I’m broke frugal, I bought the generic ruffler foot, which didn’t come with very clear instructions. A little Googling led me to this tutorial which I found very helpful and after a little more confusion (i.e., the fabric doesn’t actually work in the configuration that the ruffler box suggests) and a little trial and error, I soon had a lovely little ruffle.


Step 2: Create a ruffle. CHECK!

(it just occurred to me that I didn’t document the whole fabric cutting/piecing/ruffling process. Whoops. Just head over to Linda’s page, she shows it all, and with much better lighting.)

(also, since I keep calling her Linda, rather than Linda from Craftaholics Anonymous, it’s starting to sound like we’re besties or something. I should clarify, she has no idea who I am, except maybe that chick who keeps appearing on her Link Backs list. However, I would totally get a margarita with her if she were nearby and so inclined. She seems kinda awesome!)

Because I tend to jump the gun, I made my ruffle before I even had a tree to attach it to. Linda used a paper mache cone to create her ruffle trees, and after I read that they’re less expensive than the styrofoam, I was bound and determined to use those as well. Me=disappointed. Apparently they are NOT SOLD in St. Louis. Or at least anywhere I went: Michael’s, Joanne’s, Hobby Lobby. All failures. Rather than buying another styrofoam cone, I decided I would reuse the cones that I used for my Halloween Witch Hats. I made those following Cheryl’s instructions, which allowed for cone reuse. Using that same train of thought, I decided that I’d like to make a ruffle tree slipcover. Not only would I get to use my cones for future projects (remember, I’m broke frugal!), but when I pack them up after Christmas, they will take up no space at all.

Step 3: Find a cone. CHECK!

I will warn you, I have no idea how to make a ruffled slip cover. Here is my half baked method as it currently stands, which is partial at best.

-White handkerchief

-Rotary cutter or scissors


-Sewing machine or a willingness to sew by hand

-Previously created fabric ruffle of appropriate length

I started by rolling my cone in the handkerchief and then tracing around the cone. Not the most sophisticated way to measure, but it didn’t require math. Make sure you leave a decent length allowance along the cone for future pinning and sewing

Hey look! A non-phone picture! How refreshing!

Roll your cone back up in your fabric (wrong side out) and pin along the length of the cone. You want to make sure the fabric is snug enough to create a smooth slipcover, but loose enough that you’ll be able to get it on and off. Also, standard floral cones don’t come to a point. If you want a point on your tree (I did), you will either have to fashion some sort of tree-point-prosthesis (I’m open to suggestions if you have any!) or wing it when it comes to sewing the point of the fabric.


Pull the slip cover off of the cone and sew along your seam.

Cut off any excess fabric beyond your seam, then turn your slipcover right side out.

Here is where I am stuck. I haven’t figured out how to permanently attach the ruffle to the slipcover. I thought about hot glue, but I feel like that’s not as secure as sewing. I’m not sure how to sew the ruffle onto a cone. I don’t really want to do it by hand, but I might have to. The following steps are how I’ve rigged this up for now.

Take the ruffle and wrap it around the cone, overlapping the previous ruffle row just slightly. On the bottom row, I stuck a straight pin at the place where the ribbon first winds back to itself, just to stabilize the bottom row.

Continue wrapping and overlapping, adjusting for the look you want. 3/4 of the way up my cone, I ran out of ruffle and had to whip up an additional length of it. Where the two disconnected ruffles meet, I put another straight pin. Even if the ruffle was long enough, it might not be a bad idea to add some additional pins for additional ruffle stabilization.

Continue wrapping all the way up the cone. Since I haven’t found a suitable object to supplement the cone point on the styrofoam, I had to work with an empty point on my slipcover. For me, I just wound the ruffle around the slipcover, trying to avoid caving it in, and then pinned the ruffle to the slipcover to keep it from unwinding.

Step 4: Create a Ruffle Tree. CHECK!

You can’t really see the pins, but you can see the wonkiness that is the tree tip. I would love some suggestions from you guys on what to use as a cone point and also on how to permanently sew my ruffle onto my slipcover. I don’t want to have to re-wind the ruffle each Christmas!

Even with all the issues, I still really love this project. I love the ruffles, I love the fabric, I love everything about it. Now it’s starting to feel like Christmas!

Linking Up Here


DIY Felt Gift Bows December 15, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Merrsidotes @ 12:04 pm

These bows are such a cute addition to any gift box or even as a sweet ornament. Definitely reusable and they hold up much better than the shiny paper ones from the dollar store! I will tell you, I used this project as my inaugural sewing machine craft and, while fun, it was tedious and unnecessary to sew these. I think I’ll probably use hot glue next time. However, for the sake of honesty, I will tell you how I used my sewing machine on this project.




Rotary cutter or scissors

Sewing machine

Upholstery needle


First, start by cutting your felt into (9) 3/4 inch strips as follows:

– (3) 11 inch strips

– (3) 10 inch strips

– (2) 9 inch strips

-  (1) 3.5 inch strip



Next, you need to twist and secure each strip into a Figure Eight, making sure that both ends of the 8 are point up


Do this with all your strips, except for the smallest. Take the 3.5 inch strip and sew it into a circle.

(I really need to stop taking these photos with my phone. I’m gonna try to work on that.)

Finally, you will stack these Figure Eights on top of one another, largest on bottom and smallest on top. Be sure to stagger the direction of the loops so that you don’t have any large gaps and that it looks uniform all together.


Here I used an upholstery needle, which is curved, to sew my loops together. A regular needle should work too, but the upholstery needle is nice to get into the middle of the bow without smooshing the loops too much. This step here is definitely one I would replace with hot glue. Felt by nature isn’t great with holding thread, so if you pull too hard, it can pull right out. Not that I have any experience with that or anything…

Finished product!

And here it is on my sewing machine, like a little present to myself!


Linking up here


When did it become December?? December 13, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Merrsidotes @ 3:41 pm

Well, I’ve returned, after apparently falling right off the face of the Earth. Happy December everybody! After Thanksgiving, our house was hit with one illness after another. Goober still has a runny nose and Hubby’s cough is only slightly terrifying. In addition to disease ravaging our household, I had to write a final paper for class that was due yesterday. I spent the entire, and I mean ENTIRE, weekend writing and revising until I couldn’t see straight. Unfortunately, my new sewing machine that I bought off Amazon with my birthday gift cards arrived last Wednesday. I knew if I opened that box, I would fail my class, so in the box it stayed until last night!

I’ve been collecting crafting supplies since around Halloween, when I decided to become crafty. Reading the creative blogs of folks like Cheryl, Linda, and the Real Housewives really inspired me to start crafting and creating and generally doing something other than collapsing into my television when Goober goes to bed. Hence my decision to forgo a Kindle Fire in lieu of a new sewing machine. (I still really want a Kindle Fire, in case lovely folks at Amazon are reading this) Our home is quite small though and while our basement remains unfinished, I decided I really needed to create some space down there for my new, and hopefully expanding, hobby.

Last night I finally was free to get downstairs and get my little space put together. I have a desk from a coworker that I want to eventually refinish, but it’s good for now. I set up my machine, pulled in a couple storage bins, hung a picture and voila! Instant crafting nook!

There’s my pretty new sewing machine!! My apologies for all future pictures down here. I have two hanging bare bulbs as my only light source in this windowless room. Also, please ignore the folded up ping pong table and the wall studs. Although, the straight studs work well for shelves and it’s really easy to drive a picture hanging nail…maybe if I get some cute wallpaper or some paint…

On the table top:


Basket: Glue, scissors, tape, stapler, rubber bands.

Letter tray: Sewing machine manuals, crafty coupons, office tray

Office tray: pens, markers, clips, post-its, hole punch, rotary cutter, rubber band ball

Under desk storage:


Top drawer: Sewing stuff (needles, thread, bias tape, elastic, pressure feet)

Middle drawer: Crafting stuff (paint, glue gun, glue sticks, glitter, googly eyes)

Bottom drawer: Stationary

Side storage:

On top: Box of ribbons, box of scrap fabric, basket of clothes to be mended

Top drawer: scrapbook paper, felt, fabric

Bottom drawer: cutting mat, ruler, big stapler, twine. This will probably be a depository for random stuff.

So there’s my Craft Nook. It’s not much, it’s not fancy AT ALL, but it’s mine all mine and I’m pretty happy about it.