Monday, March 31, 2014

MoMo Monday- Soak Up The Sun

MoMo is now an indoor cat but it wasn't always that way.  It was more of a gradual progression to get her to that point.  

She first showed up at my house as a stray.  She spent pretty much all her time outdoors and I would have to sit outside to brush her nappy fur and play with her.  Then, slowly she made her way in for a few minutes at a time....she's the cautious type

We got a doggy door and then she started spending even more time inside since she didn't have to have us there to let her in anymore and she could come and go as she pleased.  That quickly brought her from a 50/50 indoor outdoor cat to her spending most of her time inside and just letting herself out the doggy door a few times a day for some sun.   That's how she rolled for a few years up until a year ago when she had to have surgery.

Because of the surgery she couldn't be allowed outside while she healed so the cover went over the doggy door and it hasn't been taken off since.  I decided that with her age and the health problems she had been having that it was time to make the old lady settle down and put an end to her outside partying ways.

Overall she adjusted to becoming a full time indoor cat pretty well.  I think at first she felt so crappy from her surgery anyway she didn't really care and then before you knew it was summer and she has no interest in staying outside when its 112.  Ain't nobody want to be out in that!

But Fall and Spring are another story....that's when the weather is nice here in AZ and she wants in on some of that.  Sunning herself in my craft room window is no longer good enough....she craves the outdoors

It's this time of year that she sneaks out the door anytime we are taking out the garbage or bringing in the groceries.....opens the door with her little paw and scoots right on out


It's so funny to me because she seems to always find the spot right where the shade ends and sunshine begins...like she can't wait to go any further so she plops down at the first spot of sun she sees


 See how she's right on the shade line? lol


 And then she rolls....and rolls....and rolls




MoMo just loves soaking up those rays.....check out the video




And then after about 15 minutes.....she's ready to be an indoor cat again.  It's that damn Mohair suit she insists on wearing all the time...so hot! 

 Get it....Mohair??  Merp!

The Boy didn't know that Mohair is a real thing.....my joke was lost on him :(

Happy MoMo Monday!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wardrobe Wednesday- Little Changes

If you follow along with Wardrobe Wednesday you can skip over this next paragraph....I've said this before....


The reason I started Wardrobe Wednesday is not because I'm claiming to be a fashionista...I'm not one at all.  I merely started this as a way for me to break out of my clothing rut and start trying new things and "styling" myself a little more...hopefully boosting my confidence in turn.  I was always one of those self conscious type girls who admired the the clothing of other girls....but thought  it could NEVER possibly look good on me.  I decided it was time for me to stop wishing I could wear and just effing wear it already!  So here I am!

Throughout this whole process of learning to "style" myself I've learned that just making a few changes makes all the difference in the world.  Take this outfit for example



Hat: Fashion Q
T Shirt: Walmart
Jeans: Ross
Tennies: Little girls section @ Walmart
Leather earrings : One Little Belt

This outfit is very casual and not breaking fashion boundaries by any means....but it's very different from the way I would have worn it a year ago.  You see old Whitney totally would have bought the same shirt because I'm a sucker for stripes (read about my stripes obsession Here) and jeans are jeans so I would have had those too.

The difference is old Whitney would have just worn the shirt with the jeans rolled down like normal.  Instead I opted to roll them up for some interest (not sure if that's good or bad since I'm so short but I do it anyway lol)  I would have worn plain white sandals to match the white in the shirt (I had serious matchy matchy issues)   and that would have been the extent of the look.  How boring is that?  A Tshirt, jeans, and white sandals....bleh!

New Whitney wore leopard tennies for the heck of it, a hat, and even earrings....watch out people!  I've always felt funny wearing hats and still sort of do sometimes.  But the part of me that likes it is starting to overrule the part of me that's self conscious and I just do it.  And as for the earrings....I'm the girl who has worn stud diamond earrings for all the years I've had my ears pierced....so me wearing these is a big deal in my world!  

Moral of the story here.....just those few small changes creates a totally different and more interesting look. 

Have a happy {Wardrobe} Wednesday!

Monday, March 24, 2014

MoMo Monday- Vacation

I'm starting to get REALLY anxious and sad about leaving MoMo behind while we go on vacation.  Yes, I know she's a cat and yes I know we don't leave until June.....but hear me out

Usually when we go on vacation I'll of course miss her....but she always has her Nana to stay with her so at least I'm not at all worried about her.  My mom takes great pride in being the pet sitter for me and all my sisters.  It's not uncommon for her to watch animals twice in one month between all of us.....she loves her furry grandbabies!

The problem this time is that literally EVERYONE will be gone on the same trip since it's for my sisters wedding...of course including our built in pet sitter.  My sisters are all having to book hotels that allow dogs....but that just isn't even an option for Miss MoMo.  Car rides stress her out soooo bad and I know ultimately it would just be bad for her health with her history and age.  I just can't do that to her.

So she's being left at home and we will be having friends check in on her....makes me feel bad!  She's way more attached to people than most cats are.  She can totally fend for herself if need be....but she loves attention like a dog so I'm sure this will be a long week for her...and me.

This of course is coming from the couple who call the house and leave her messages on the answering machine to say hi.....yep....we totally do!  My mom would play them for her and her little ears would perk up.  We're pathetic.....but I embrace it completely 

And it doesn't help either that when we are packing up she gets so sad.  The second she sees a suitcase or a bag com out of the closet and set down in the living room (my packing area of choice) she freaks out and gives me this sad face


She just sits there and watches you pack....its the most heartbreaking thing ever!  Then she usually plops down on my suitcase in protest




Waaaaaaah!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Farm Party Gift Wrap

A couple weekends ago my niece had a farm themed birthday party...and it was awesome!

Complete with petting zoo

Birthday girl and the pig








And this llama was a total badass!  He was like a celebrity on the red carpet.  I swear that as we all crowded around to take pictures he slowly turned toward each person to get their photo.....llama knows whats up!



And he was the best photo bomber ever




Anways.....getting the point of this post is the gift wrap.  I like to wrap gifts keeping with the theme of the celebration.  In fact, I have a whole section of my blog dedicated to this called "Creative Gift Wrapping"  (look on the left side of the main page)  You can see all my past gift wrapping there

Well of course this party was no different.  I decided to make the gift look like a barn.  It was really easy because all I needed was construction paper and a glue stick



And I did it in like 15 mins.....before I had to leave.  Procrastination at its finest people

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Wardrobe Wednesday- Workout Edition

Nothing forces you to get in shape quite like a wedding.  Whether you're the bride or not it sends you into a sudden panic.  

 My sisters wedding is this June in San Diego.  Not only do I want to be in shape for my dress but also for all the beach time that will come with it.  I'm working out just as hard as I did for my own wedding...but things aren't going so well.....waaaaah!  But that's another post...

I'm not alone though.  My oldest sister (not the bride, another sister) is working out too and we're checking in with each other almost daily.  Her husband is on the wagon as well to try and fit back into his suit.

She even said to him "What the heck are we going to do to keep you in shape now? After this all the sisters will be married and you won't have a wedding to get in shape for every few years"   

 Bahahahaha! A very true statement.....^^^ 

So since working out has been more a part of my life these days than normal (I fall on and off for months at a time) I decided to do a work out version of Wardrobe Wednesday



Tanks: Walmart
Leggings: Kohls 
Sunglasses: 99c Only
Shoes: Skechers (Ross)
Yoga Mat: TJ Maxx

I'm holding the yoga mat for 2 reasons....its my favorite work out....and because I'm in love with how cute it is and wanted to show it off.  And it matched my outfit...win!

One thing though is I have to be super careful with these leggings.  I usually don't have camel toe issues with leggings because I mostly wear spandex ones which for whatever reason don't give me problems.  These are cotton though so the seam up the crotch is kind of thick so if it moves even a little bit in the wrong direction I get Ninja foot

And in case you're wondering ninja foot is a severe case of camel toe.   I learned this from The Boy







See it?


Moose Knuckle is another favorite



Happy Wardrobe Wednesday!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Money Saving Wedding Tips: From a REAL bride

With wedding season here I'm seeing countless articles with wedding money saving tips.  Every article sounds pretty much the same just worded a little different or the tips are just flat out ridiculous to me (skip the DJ, use an Ipod...have a potluck reception...WTF??). I also noticed that there don't seem to be too many articles out there for the "tweener" bride  and by tweener I don't mean a 13 year old Justin Bieber fan (shudders in disgust)  I mean that there don't seem to be enough realistic tips for those regular people who don't want to have a crazy extravagant wedding that they go into debt for.....but at the same time aren't exactly aiming to have "A 5k Wedding" as so many articles boast...you want somewhere in the  middle. This prompted me to write what I learned planning my own wedding.  My little disclaimer here is that I'm no expert....just a money saving gal who learned a few things along the way.  So here's to you tweener brides!


Venue

 Your venue is the single most important aspects of the entire planning process.  It truly sets the tone for everything else. Not only the theme or overall feel of your wedding but also how much you will ultimately end up spending on everything else.  I strongly advise against getting an all inclusive package if you are looking to save money.  If you are getting an all inclusive wedding venue package I highly doubt you are reading this article anyway.  Some brides prefer the all inclusive factor because of the ease that comes with it.  There is no arguing that it is WAAAAAY easier on your part than researching and booking each and every vendor yourself.  If you have the money to do it....by all means go right on ahead and good for you! But if you're looking to save money I would stay away from a package deal.

I know a few brides who got them and quickly realized they weren't quite as all inclusive as they thought.  They ended up having to pay more money to get the flowers they really wanted or for specifics with their photography etc.  This left them wondering how much of their total was budgeted out to each vendor and whether or not they could have gotten it cheaper elsewhere....which in the end defeats the purpose of them going into this in the first place.

Now when I say that your venue sets the tone for the budget of your entire wedding that  doesn't mean you run out and find the cheapest venue possible to keep your wedding costs down.  There are a TON more factors to think about first.

Sure you can find a super cheap venue....but what does it come with?  If you got the venue cheap but have to spend an arm and a leg to rent chairs, tables, lines and all sorts of other things you may end up spending more than if you found a slightly more expensive place that provided those things.  It's all about finding a balance.

And don't rent a venue that's cheap but so ugly it will cost you a ton of money and time to cover up what you don't look.  Choosing a venue that already has its own ambiance will save you tons of time, money, and labor.

Let me give you a perfect example of an all inclusive venue package vs. a basic package with shopping around for your own vendors. I got the basic package at my venue. This included the ceremony area (chairs, decor, runner) the cocktail area (tables, linens, decor) and the reception room.  This included all the linens, plates, silverware, glasses, toasting glasses,and centerpieces (I just added a few of my own touches) a bartender, and soft drinks and mixers all up to 200 guests.  I also got a "day of" coordinator included in this package as well.  I feel like I got a real bang for my buck.  They had so many things already provided and I just added things to it.  And by the venue providing all the plate ware and glasses it saved me a ton of money with the catering company (more to come on that later)

  The all inclusive package at the same venue cost more than 4x what I paid and included all the same things but also the food, DJ, photographer, officiant, cake, and flowers.

By getting the basic package and then shopping around for my own food, DJ, cake, photographer, and officiant I ended up paying under 4k less than the all inclusive package for my ENTIRE wedding start to finish (my dress, rehearsal dinner etc)
The person buying that all inclusive package automatically paid 4k more than me and then still had to buy their dress and pay for the rehearsal dinner and all those other little things.

So in my experience getting the basic package and shopping for your own vendors may be more work but it will save you a TON of money when it is all said and done.

My venue: Aldea at Tlaquepaque, Phx AZ





In a Nutshell
*Don't go all inclusive
*Go cheap but not too cheap
*Find a place that includes as many things as possible in the basic package

Weekday Weddings

Before you start scrolling to the next point seriously stop and consider this.  2 1/2 years ago when I got married on a Thursday I got all kinds of crazy looks from people but over the years it's becoming more and more common. In fact, the way I found my venue was by attending a wedding there on a Monday night...and it was super cool! Look at the caption on the photo booth pictures....you can't beat that!   


The price difference is drastic.  The cost of my wedding would have been literally double the price for a Saturday for all the same exact things included.  When we saw that we decided Thursday it is!

I truly feel like the important people who REALLY want to be there for more than the free food and booze will make the effort to be there.  Don't let other peoples comments discourage you.  Do what you can afford and do what makes you happy.  In fact, you may end up being able to afford a nicer venue than you originally thought you could just by booking with them on a weekday versus a weekend.  Look around and keep your options open.

In a Nutshell
*Weekdays will save you tons of dough
*Guests that complain about it can suck it

Alcohol

Obviously if you are already choosing to not serve alcohol you can skip right over this section.  But if you're anything like me you think part of the fun is getting to mix and mingle with everyone with a cocktail in hand.  Remember how I said the venue was a VERY important choice? Well that definitely stands true when it comes to your bar.  If your venue makes you get the liquor through them than you can automatically assume you will be spending a few thousand dollars.  For real. That's how they get you.  You might as well just turn around bend over and....I'll stop right there.

Another HUGE perk of my venue was that they allowed us to bring in  our own alcohol.  Pretty cool right? And just to make things even better I was provided a bartender and all the sodas, mixers, cups, napkins etc (although I brought in my own cute napkins)  That way the only thing we had to bring was the liquor itself.

To save myself tons of money I hit up Fry's (Kroger and King Soopers in other areas) for their buy one get one for a penny sale on select alcohol brands.  You read that right...a penny!

We stocked up on tequila, vodka, rum...basically all the hard stuff we could.  Including flavored vodkas for my signature drink.  Then all we had to do was buy wine and beer at Costco.  We had plenty of alcohol for our 150 guests that showed up plus we brought a bunch home.  The only thing we ran out of was Michelob Ultra in the last hour...but I didn't feel bad because we still had 2 other beer options plus 2 signature drinks, and all the regular well stuff.  I would consider that pretty darn good.

Want to know our grand total for alcohol???

Drum roll please.........




$400!!!

Yup.  We rocked that shit yo!

Mind you that was from cocktail hour at 6pm until midnight....6 full hours of open bar.  Not too 
shabby




In a Nutshell
*Drinking at weddings is fun
*Find a venue that lets you bring in your own hooch
*Liquor sales, liquor sales, liquor sales!


DJ

This section is small because saving money on your DJ really only comes down to one factor.....the day of your wedding.  I saved a minimum of $500 on my DJ by having a Thursday wedding.  Most DJs for a Saturday wedding STARTED at $1,200....and who knows how high from there. Three words:



Weekday. Weddings. Rock!
In a Nutshell
*Seriously....book a weekday wedding
 

Photographer 

The photography was something very important to me and wasn't something I was willing to save money on by doing it DIY or getting somebody sub par who charged less.

The crappy part is that wedding photography is expensive....like REALLY expensive.
When I first emailed my photographer for a quote the cheapest package started at 3k...waaaay over my budget.  I emailed back basically with my tail between my legs thanking her for the information prepared to go on my not so merry little way when she ended up emailing me back asking me what my budget was and what exactly it was I was looking for.

That's when she proceeded to tell me what she could do for me in my price range and basically costume built me a package. I ended up getting 2 shooters, 6 hours of coverage, and a CD of all my photos for $1,250
The area where I saved the gobs of money was by opting to forgo any kind of prints or books and just getting a full CD of the pictures to print on my own.

It also helped that I had a photographer who was open and honest with me and told me what she truly felt was unnecessary...like anymore than 6 hours she said was overkill.  She could have let me add on more time but she told me not to.  And when for a moment I considered paying $200 more to upgrade to the high resolution CD from the medium one she flat out told me that unless I planned on printing out blow up posters of ourselves I really didn't need to.  I am very grateful that they never tried to take me for a ride and get more money out of me and never once made me feel silly for having such a small budget.

Another added perk was that they were a husband and wife team...which meant built in double shooters.  Having two shooters REALLY maximizes your time.  While one is shooting the guys getting ready the other is with the girls...allowing for more time with each.  I also noticed that while one was taking the posed shots the other stood off to the side and snapped candids throughout the whole process.  And during big moments like the ceremony or first dance one was getting up close photos and the other took larger frame shots that caught peoples reactions to that same photo.  It was really a perfect set up....better than I could have imagined!

In a Nutshell
*Photography is expensive....prepare yourself
*Find someone who will custom build a package for you
*Consider what is important and not so important to you and make cuts based off that
*Do you really need a book of pictures NOW when you are spending so much money....think Shutterfly down the road
*Having 2 shooters is a MAJOR plus and maximizes your money and time


Food

Yet again....the whole venue thing comes in to play.  Don't get a venue that requires you to use their food....because 90% of the time it means it's super expensive.  There are the rare exceptions....but for the most part this is their opportunity to rape you. Some places as high as $100 per person....which to me is completely outrageous.  If I was a rich socialite I would be all for it....but I'm a poor chick in her 20s....ain't happening.

Once again my venue allowed outside vendors for food.  We decided on a type of food that we genuinely loved (Greek) but would also be good on budget as well.  


For $30.16 per person we got 7 appetizers, greek salad, hummus and pita, and a buffet of steak kabobs, lemon oregano chicken legs, turmeric rice, and vegetables.

Don't get too stuck on thinking you have to have "wedding food"  the steak or chicken with mashed potatoes and 3 spears of asparagus is over done and usually overpriced.

Get food you REALLY want that won't cost an arm and a leg and appeal to a wide range of people.

And for the last time I swear....having a venue that provides you with serving ware will save you money with your caterer.  Caterers charge a mint for you to use their linens, plates, toasting glasses etc. 

In a Nusthell
*Being able to bring in your own caterer will save you tons of money
* Don't get stuck on serving "wedding food"
*Have food you actual like and is affordable
*Make sure to ask your venue if they have serving ware for you to use

Cake

Ironically for somebody who used to make cakes as a side business I cared very little about my cake. It just wasn't a priority for me and I didn't want to spend a lot of money on it at all.

Wedding cakes can be crazy expensive these days as well...up to $5 a serving or even more!

Save yourself the money by skipping fondant.  It doesn't taste very good, has a weird texture, and it drives the cost of your cake way up.  
My disclaimer here though is that there are some designs where it would HAVE to be fondant to achieve the look and buttercream wouldn't even be an option.  Please, PLEASE don't be one of those crazy brides that tells their cake decorator they want swags and draping and hand painted details....and then demand that it all needs to be done in buttercream....because it isn't going to happen and they WILL talk shit about you as soon as you leave.  Make sure your design is realistically in line with your budget.  So if you want to keep the cost of your cake down I highly suggest a buttercream frosted cake which in turn will usually end up being a simpler and more classic design which then in turn means less time and labor which equals cheaper.





In a Nutshell
*Keep it simple! Classic simple designs are cheaper
*Say no to fondant
*Be realistic with your design according to your budget
*Just make sure it tastes good


Rehearsal Dinner 

Right out of the gate I knew I wanted a really laid back rehearsal dinner.  I opted for a picnic themed dinner at my inlaws house.  We had checkered tablecloths and napkins, cute mini baskets to hold the silverware (actually plastic ware) and tin cans with babies breath in them as decor.

In our case some of the bridal party had never even met before.  A laid back BBQ setting was the perfect time for everyone to relax and mingle before the big day where you are suddenly corralled together taking pictures and walking arm in arm down the aisle. 
I find this much more appealing than being in a restaurant (fancy or not) at a long table where it's loud and you can hardly hear each other and you can't even interact with the people at the other end....no bueno!  And not to mention the outrageous cost of taking that many people out to eat at a restaurant the night before the single most expensive day of your life (maybe)....makes me sweat just thinking about it

We served hot dogs, and sliders with all the fixings, all sorts of salads, chips, and pie for dessert.  It was easy, laid back, and everything that I wanted.

I made most the food myself but gladly took the help when I received offers.  Our Nina brought the pies, my mother inlaw made potato salad, and an uncle brought hot dog buns. 

I highly suggest going this route

In a Nutshell
*Skip the restaurant
*Go easy and laid back
*Accept offers to help out

Favors

A huge pet peeve of mine is that a lot of these wedding money saving articles will tell you to skip favors all together....but I think that you would be giving up a perfect opportunity to insert personality into your wedding

Too often people think of wedding favors as something lame like Jordan almond wrapped in tulle circles.  Now if you're going to do that....then yes....go ahead and skip it.  But if you want to do something that truly represents you or something you like please don't pass over it!  Details are what make memories and make people smile.

And you can totally do it without spending a ton of money.  My wedding favor was a cupcake in a windowed box at each place setting.



The reason for the cupcake was because I am a cupcake fanatic.  I collect cupcake items and even made a giant cupcake (complete with chocolate wrapper) as the topper of my wedding cake.  I made the cupcakes to look similar to the one on my cake.  That way it was like they were taking home a part of my wedding cake with them.

I made all the cupcakes myself and it was fairly easy and cheap.  It cost under $1 per person.  Cheap but cool favors are totally doable!

And yes it's about you....but really try to do something people will ACTUALLY use or like.  I've seen people give away seeds to plant and things of that sort....cute idea....but how many people will actually follow through on that? I suggest sticking to things more universal because it is  more likely to be used and not be a waste of your time and money.  Food is usually a good way to go or small useful everyday items like cups

In a Nutshell
*Don't miss the opportunity to add personality to your wedding
*DIY your favors to keep costs low
*Give away things that appeal to as many people as possible so you don't waste your time and money


Don't Be Afraid to DIY!

There are some cases where DIYing isn't cost effective.  Sometimes it really is just easier and better to buy it.  But in other cases it can be the only way to get exactly what you want and in a lot of cases ends up being cheaper.  It really just depends on the item

For example....I tried to just buy the shoes I wanted for my wedding....but I couldn't find them ANYWHERE.  Making them myself was the only option at that point and I love how they turned out

(full tutorial HERE )



DIYing is a great way to personalize your wedding and it's totally doable on the cheap

Like these cocktail napkins




Bathroom baskets 




Or you can be insane like me and make all your flowers out of coffee filters 








(I have a ton more Wedding DIY projects under the "wedding" label on the left side of the main page)


Keep your eyes peeled all the time for potential wedding items.  Half the time I wouldn't even have the idea for something until I laid eyes on it and then it all came together.

And don't be afraid to buy things for a good deal that don't exactly match your color scheme. Spray paint became my best friend during my wedding planning.  I sprayed painted everything from picture frames, baskets, buckets....you name it! I spray painted so often I even got a little hooked on the smell....it's good stuff.

Another reason people tend to think that DIYing is expensive is because they do it wrong.  Yes, there is a right and wrong way to do it.  A wrong way would be to get too specific of an idea in your head (I am guilty of this too)  You need to be open minded and flexible to get the best deals on your projects.

 Walking into a craft store it is SUPER easy to get caught up and overwhelmed and walk out spending a fortune.  Make some trips that are more for "research" to see what materials are available and for what prices first instead of walking in without a plan and dropping serious dough because you just went for it.  If you gather ideas first while price checking you will most likely find a cheaper way to do it than you first planned.  It's all about the research! (online too!)

And ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS use a coupon!  For reals....they come so in handy at craft stores.  I would even plan my trips around what coupons I had.  I would keep big ticket items I needed in mind and wait to buy those when I got a 50% off coupon.  I would even drag The Boy along with me and make him stand in line behind me so we could use multiple coupons....you do what you gotta do!

Most stores have phone Apps now that you just pull up the coupon right there in the store.  No worrying about clipping or forgetting them at home...it's the best!


In a Nutshell
*DIYing can get you exactly what you want
*Be flexible and open minded to get better deals
*Always keep an eye out
*Spray paint is your friend!
*Research, research, research!
* For the love of god ALWAYS use a coupon


Well there ya have it brides! (and grooms) I felt like I did a good job at keeping costs low(er) for my wedding without being so die hard that I went crazy.  Everything was doable














Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Wardrobe Wednesday- Plaid Rain boots Outfit

I'll be the first to admit that this isn't the cutest outfit I've ever put together.  It was more so just an excuses to wear my rain boots.   I hadn't worn them a single time in over two year since I bought them.  And the original reason I bought them was to wear them as makeshift snow boots.  Snow boots are super expensive and hideous....at least rain boots are cheaper and have cute designs. I just wore these with thermal socks and it worked out just fine.

Fast forward 2 years later and it actually rained here in AZ for like two day straight! Say whaaaat?  SO I excitedly put on my boots when I saw how gloomy and wet it was outside.  Sadly though, by the time I actually left the house to run errands and then go to birthday party it was already dried up and then I just looked like that crazy overzealous lady in the rain boots.  Oh well.....I've been worse



Boyfriend T- Target
Jeans: Ross
Cardigan: Forever 21
Rain boots: Walmart

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

DIY American Girl Doll Sunshade

I'm back from a 2 week blogging hiatus.  Life has been crazy hectic lately and actually the last 2 weeks have been a little more mellow than they had been...but I still felt like I needed a time out from something.  Sadly, I wish that time out could have been from something else...like my 9-5, or cleaning, or cooking because I would love nothing more than to blog all day.  But life must go on so blogging went on the back burner.  

But I'm back and ready to share some projects with you!

I don't know about you but my nieces LOVE American Girl dolls.  I always love them as a kid and would day dream about having my own while I flipped through the catalog but I never had the chance to own one myself.  You could say that my nieces dolls are just as fun for me as they are for them.  It's like I'm a kid all over again!  For Christmas I made all kinds of accessories for them and I will gradually sharing them all with you.

First up are the sunshades I made for their jeeps.

At work we got in a huge case of Turduckens for our big Holiday Meal that we put on for the whole hospital.  They came in frozen wrapped in this insulated bubble wrap type packaging.

Can you spot the Momo?

As soon as I  saw it I screamed ..Sunshade!!!  It was perfect!

I had my sister send me the measurements for the doll jeep and I created a template that size with rounded edges and traced it onto the material. You will need two of these to create your sunshade since it is only reflective on one side



Cut them out and then take electrical tape that has been folded over onto itself to be thinner and not sticky and hot glue it onto the edge of one of the pieces.  Do another for the other side as these will be your tie strings for your shade.




Using plenty of hot glue sandwich the two pieces together.  Using electrical tape again, fold the tape as neatly in half all the way around the outside edge of your shade.  This will hold it together even better and give it the realistic piping edge look of a real shade




You're all done!  

At first I thought I would need velcro or something to hold it in place on the windshield since it obviously doesn't have visors like a real car to hold it in place.  Luckily though the windshield has a slight lip and it pops in nicely and holds in place





If you can't get your hands on material like this for free like I did you could always buy a sunshade for cheap at the dollar store.  You will get a few of them out of just $1 spent.