Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Recipe: Healthy Apple Breakfast Muffins

As the weather starts to get colder, I spend more time baking than sewing.  The other day I was reading my Style at Home magazine and saw this lovely pic of apple breakfast muffins.  So I decided to make some too. 


The recipe was easy enough to follow...just don't overmix!    Click here to get the recipe.

Pre and post baking

The true test is when you eat it

Don't be disappointed if your muffin looks like mine instead of theirs.  It's all the same when it's in your belly.

Verdict?   This can only be a breakfast muffin because it does taste very healthy (ie. not sweet at all).

Happy Baking!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Giving Thanks and A Bunch of Firsts

Happy Turkey Day!  In my pre-kid life, I worked for a Global IT company.  Although I worked in Canada, many of my colleagues were American.   As such, I had the benefit of celebrating Canadian Thanksgiving in October and American Thanksgiving in November.  I guess you could say that I had the chance to say "Thanks" twice.

So today, I am thankful for having a wonderful family and husband.  Hubby and I are fortunate that I am able to take a "break" for the next 5 years to raise our kids.  It's not just that I "can", but I also "want" to be a stay at home Mom while the kids are little.  As a result, I get to witness a bunch of "firsts".   When I went back to work when Joshie was a year old, I'm pretty sure there was a lot that I had missed.  So now that I am home, I like to celebrate the "firsts".  There were a lot of firsts the past couple of weeks and I'm so glad I was able to witness them all.

The kids went to an indoor amusement park called Fantasy Fair for a birthday party and Joshie won his first amusement park prize all by himself.   It was especially fun because he won playing the rollerball game!!!  If you've been reading my blog, you'll know that hubby made one for him so he could play at home too.  He was thrilled with the prize that he chose.  Look at his stunned face in this photo - so sweet!

Joshie took his first class photo and received his first report card.   I'm pretty proud of the little guy :o)  He's learning to write his name.

I let Bunny help me make some Jello Jigglers and it wasn't a disaster!

I got my first serger!!  Which is also why I haven't been posting anything new...

I participated in my first blog series by sharing a tutorial over at Elegance and Elephants.

Bunny finally decided to pedal his tricycle instead of walking it.

Last but not least, hubby and I had our first dinner out date night in a long long time.  We went to 5 Doors North and the food was "le yum". 

So ends the week... looking forward to some more "firsts"!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Josh & Teo in Hong Kong & Upcoming Blog Series

As some of you are aware, I sell my wares on ETSY under the shop name Josh & Teo.  This past summer, I entered into discussions with a buyer in Hong Kong who was opening up an online store for high end gifts.  He sent me the proposal for Gift and it sounded exciting.   So, I started sewing...

I shipped out these:

And then I waited.... and waited for the online store to open.  It is now open and  Hong Kong customers may purchase baby gift baskets which include my Sophie Leashes. 

Here's how they packaged up their gift hampers


Another sample...

Click here to see the various "boy" and "girl" baskets from Gift

In other news, I am participating in a blog series called "Knock it Off" on a blog I follow called Elegance and Elephants.   I was thrilled when Heidi approached me to participate in her blog series.  She sews the cutest things for her little boy and then writes about it.   I highly recommend that you take a peek at her lovely blog, even if you don't sew.

My post will be up on Friday November 16 so don't forget to check it out!

Elegance & Elephants

Happy Sewing!

Friday, November 09, 2012

DIY: Remembrance Day Poppy Conversion

The other day, Joshie got a red poppy from school. Although all the kids in class got one, only two of them showed up at school wearing it pinned to their uniform. When I asked him what he learned about Remembrance Day, he said "to remember". What I asked what he was supposed to remember, he said "I don't know".   After I told him why we wear poppies in November, he said he wanted to wear his to school. 

My overactive imagination was concocting all sorts of scenarios involving the j/k class and open pins.  So, I decided to remove the long pin and sew on a safety pin.

It took me less than 5 minutes to do but will ease my mind today when he's at school.

Although Remembrance Day falls on the weekend, we will be observing a moment of silence at home (well, as silent as two boys can be...)

Monday, November 05, 2012

Yellow Dump Truck Toddler Backpack

Here's a toddler dump truck in yellow for little I!  Usually, my customers choose white for the truck but I am quite partial to the yellow.  I quite like the idea of a little boy jumping around in yellow rain boots, wearing this backpack. 

As always, I like to get my customer's approval before sewing the bag.  First I lay it out so that they can get an idea of what it will look like.  Then I sew on the applique and get one more "OK" before I do the rest.  

Here's the front and back.  Notice how I used yellow thread to sew on the wheels?  I am going to start matching the wheel thread to the main body of the applique.  I like how it ties it all together.  "I"'s mom liked the idea of putting the product label on the side of the door, kind of like a real construction truck. 

 Here are the sides

The lining is blue and red stars (my favourite!) and there is an inner pocket to hold diapers and other stuff.

Interestingly enough, I've had another request recently for a yellow train.  I wonder if yellow is becoming a trend? 

I've had several people ask me how many backpacks I make and how I juggle home and my Josh & Teo ETSY shop.  How I do it is by limiting the number of bags I make to 2 a month (and sometimes none!).  I really enjoy making these bags and I put my heart into making each bag special for the little boy or girl that is going to receive one.   Hence, I don't sew rushed, rather I take my time to craft a durable backpack that he/she will cherish and use every day.  

In addition to that, part of the decision to slow it down was the result of a minor car accident that happened at the end of August.  Thankfully none of the kids were in the car.  This whole experience made me re-examine my priorities and how I spend my time.  As I couldn't do much sewing, I focused my energies on my recovery.   I also started doing Yoga with my sister which actually combines 2 of this year's New Year's resolutions (ya!!!). 

I'm happy to report that everything is back to normal.  The car was fixed, a new car seat was installed, and I am good too.  The insurance company was kind enough to mail two teddy bears to my kids last month.   It was surprising but a nice touch.  The kids are now advertising for an insurance company but they do like their teddys...

 Happy November!

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Local Paper Feature, Halloween, Birthday and Good Times

This past week has been a busy one!  First off, Joshie turned 4 and we had a nice family party for him.  My mom made him this cake to match his knight costume.

Hurricane Sandy blew her way through the North East and Monday night was a bit scary so we kept Joshie at home the next day until the winds were calmer.  I had saved some birthday presents so we could play "find your present".  Ever since Joshie was little, we played the Find the Heart game.   He loved searching for the presents almost as much as the presents themselves.  His favourite was Uno.  Check out that smile! 

I made caramel apples

Joshie wore his knight costume to school and wore it under his jacket for Trick or Treating.  He told me that next year he wants to be a Power Ranger like all the other kids.  Sigh... I guess that's the end of Halloween sewing for me. 

Last but not least, when I opened up my local community paper, our Scary Well inspired by the movie "The Ring" was featured.   Hubby was really excited and so was I!!

Looking forward to next week!