Saturday, August 20, 2011

i know, i know

i know that i told you {here} that i would try to keep up with this blog better. and try i have. but not really. there has been another trip to the ER {a crazy story which i will share later, unless i don't}, puking kids, well kid... puking kid, doctors appointment, orders, sewing, secret birthday present plotting and creating with one of my bff's husbands for said bff, helping with a baby shower for same aforementioned bff, making an awesome 6 layer cake for that bff i mentioned earlier {she's a diva}. if it wasn't for some "alone" time i took for myself last SUNDAY {a week ago?! what the...??} to write & schedule this post about my brother there would have been no posts whatsoever this week.

so yeah, I'll see you next week.

the week i hope to get all things back to normal {what's that?!}. get back on schedule to something similar to this dream on here.
you know.... that's if the doctor's appointments, mathew's shots and physical therapy, the Lamar fair, my crazy crafts and everything else doesn't get in the way.

yeah, then i'll be set!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

brothers are a girl's best friend {part dos}

today i'm spending most of the day with my brother. he works at target now. so i'm going shopping with a discount!!! 

this post with douglas and Isabella playing together was supposed to be followed by this one. but you know. life happens and drafts stay as drafts for days, weeks.... sometimes months.

my brother is one of my closest friends. and i don't have a lot of close friends {as i mentioned here}

 yes, D is in red underwear in this picture. this is Billy & i on the swing set with the kids.
don't judge. it's fun. tight, full of fat feelings, but fun.

we're 6 years apart. he's 18 & i'm 24 {25 NEXT month! just fyi *wink*}. he just graduated from high school this past May {see awesome pics here my fave is the one of mathew grabbing billy's butt right when i take the picture.}

we have our moments. i'm sure we've come to blows a couple of times. but we love each other.

about a month after he graduated he came to live with us. he doesn't even have his own room, he's in the {what is now} family room/play room/kid's library/movie room & billy's room. {he didn't like the basement like i had it set up when i posted this}

since he's been here we've had a great time! 
 the kids absolutely adore him
he makes them laugh. a lot.
we were on our way to grandma & grandpa's for the 4th of July in this one and he was in the back seat with them.

here he's lighting bottle rockets for Douglas {who's wearing Isabella's sunglasses}
and it's nice to just have him here. if mathew is working late & the kids are asleep i can go get groceries.  i can go get some coffee... i can go for a freaking drive if i need to. he's my savior sometimes. unless it comes to changing diapers. killing spiders or picking up baby snakes. that's a no. he's a wimp. or actually he's just like me & has no concept of living out here.  he says quote, "i'm not jeff corwin!"

Isabella is one of his biggest fans.

but sometimes.... sometimes  i just want him to leave. not just him though. the kids, mathew, AND him.. the dog too. everyone just leave me alone. i'm coming to the realization that maybe i'm an introvert. and neurotic. anyway. billy really helps me with that. he's a hoot. we have lots of laughs together.

he's going to kill me over this one. i got it when he came up for a breath. right after he told me not to & went under.

a few weeks ago we went to walmart for a few things late at night. we walked around for a little bit. he grabbed a pool noodle and started using it as a jump rope.  i thought it was cute so i decided to take a picture. this is totally cracking me up just thinking about it. as i took the picture. this happened.
FAIL!! he almost fell over.

i love my brother.

Friday, August 12, 2011

insta-friday, facebook, & a couple new things!

"it's friday, friday, gotta get down of friday!"
my children know that part of the song because i sing it all the time. what?! it's catchy! don't judge. HERE's the vid if you'd like to have a laugh.
14 yr old kids are so lame.

ok, um....oh! right! insta-friday! i didn't do great at taking pictures this week. so here's what i got.
life rearranged

first up! a tiny bear hat for a very special little girl that will be making her appearance just in time for hat season!

vanilla syrup from the [dollar store] & pepsi. heaven.

The Switch with the boys. i think that was on Sunday?

isabella hates cold milk. so i try and get it into her other ways. cheese, cereal AND milk, but yogurt is her favorite. specially with fruit & graham crackers in it. try it! it's delicious!

pom poms!! {tutorial here}

a basket of work! fun work. & for an awesome person too! think of this as a "sneak peek" of something great, fun, something you won't want to miss out on. one of the best collaborations in history. ok just my history but it'll be a treat! i'm so excited!!

that's it!

on facebook:

now. about facebook. i've been off of facebook for 2 weeks now. {explanation here}
i have to admit that at first i kind of had withdraws. i got on mathew's facebook a day after my rant about how much i hate it sometimes. but we're not friends with all the same people so that was weird.
other than that, it's been great & that was the only time i "cheated".
i feel cleansed.
no drama. no wasting time on it being envious, nosy, jealous, upset or consumed about what others are doing. specially those i'd rather not see in a bikini, or know what they had for breakfast.
i did make a decision. i love facebook. i like posting pictures of the children so my mom can see them because she doesn't get to see them too often. my mother-in-law {& father-in-law} also keep up with us that way. it's nice. 
all the other stuff... i'm gonna have to cut loose.
if you get "unfriended", please know that it's not because i don't want anything to do with you {though for a couple, that is the case}, or because i don't want to be your friend.
it's because we're not REAL friends.
we don't hang out.
i wouldn't call you in a crisis and you wouldn't call me either. we probably don't even have eachother's number.
those are the people i'm clearing off of my newsfeed, removing myself from theirs.
family though, they'll stay. it's family.
unless they say something stupid. then i won't hesitate on that "delete button"
just keeping it real people!
so to sum it all up, my decision is to get back on facebook, just ditch the fake friends.

and a couple new things:
did you see my new picture?! i know i know! lovely! took like 1 million shots to get one i actually liked. and that's all i got. 1. 
i also made a "blog button"!  yay! i'm so hi-tech! not. anyway, you'll find it on the right side margin. if you have a blog and would like to "swap" buttons, just let me know and i'll add yours to my "line up". Mandy & i already have! her "button" is adorable and it's right below the code for mine. OR if you'd like to make one & dont' know how i'd be more than happy to help, or you can follow this super simple tutorial from the Blog Guidebook {also in right margin}

AND i added a "subscribe via email" box too! now you can get me and my crazy rantings in your inbox! to sign up just type your email into the box right below my picture on the top left! notice i change "email" to "EMMAil". i'm so clever! corny, but cleaver!

as always, you can email me at ball{dot}emmaj{at}gmail{dot}com or just leave a comment below! thanks for stopping by!!

Thursday, August 11, 2011


Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!

this post kept "accidentally" being published before i was done. {isabella. she loves being like mommy & typing on the laptop}. So, for those of you that are on my emma-iling ;) list you probably got a couple of emails with partial posts. forgive me for that!

anyway, it's thursday again. time for the inspiration workshop! this week were looking at gardens! well, gardening. remember this post? where my garden was fantastic. i was so proud. well , guess what!?

i gave up on it.
i stopped watering, weeding, caring.
1. squash bugs ate my squash & cucumbers. on morning i went to the garden to pick tomatoes & they were just... gone.

2. japanes beetles attacked.
3. drought/heat wave... i'm not going to be out there in 110°+ weather! no thank you. 
4. i planted some hydrangea bushes by the front door and the dog dug them up. they were doing great too. i really don't like that dog sometimes. ok, a lot of the time.

so yeah! that's what's up with MY gardening right now.

but i wish i had a pretty garden, pretty landscaping. i wish my hydrangeas had grown to look like this.

as much as i love flowers though, having something minimal, just green would be great. of course around here all of our trees, bushes, even evergreens have wilting leaves right now. {Thank God for the rain we got on Tuesday & Wednesday}

 but time. there's just no time for it. i have too many things to do inside. & i can hardly keep up with all that. but if you'd like to bring me some fresh flowers, i wouldn't mind.

this though, would be a dream. specially if i didn't have to do any of the work. 

my beautiful, funny, great friend Amanda has a green thumb. she works at a {tree} nursery on the weekends. i love going to her house. the front of the house is gorgeous, but the back yard is where we spend most of our time when we're there. that or the kitchen of course. i love going there. it's so relaxing. 

i could live there.

well... see you tomorrow for "insta-friday" & a facebook update!! 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Martha Monday - tissue paper pom poms

hello. i haven't been keeping up with my "weekly" posts very well. not too many Martha Mondays. Sorry Martha, i don't relate to you sometimes... as u'll see displayed on my instagram feed
this was my kitchen sink last Friday. no bueno.
Martha would be so ashamed.
but i also haven't been posting my Sunday Read Alongs. i've been reading, taking notes, just not blogging it. 
my bad. forgive me. i'll TRY to do better.
so lets get back to Martha!
the first time i saw these was in a kit by Martha at Michael's i think.

{images via pinterest "tissue paper pom pom" search}
then tiffany used them for my baby shower for Isabella. 

and katlyn had some at her last birthday party.

i love them. i think i'll make some for isabella's room.

here's the how to! straight from Martha.

stack 8 20X30 inch sheets of tissue. make 1 1/2 inch wide accordion folds, creasing with each fold.

"fold and 18 inch piece of floral wire, {or any kind of wire} in half, and slip over center of folded tissue; twist. with scissors, trim end of tissue into rounded or pointy shapes." in the picture above the smaller pom pom is cut pointy, & the bigger one is rounded. you could cut slits in the ends like fraying almost too! that would be cute!

"separate layers, pulling away from center one at a time"

"twist wire to secure!"

BUT!! there are so many variations. the fringe effect like i mentioned above, less tissue paper sheets would give them an airier look, i wouldn't recommend using more than 8 or 9. you can buy a package of about 9 sheets at Target or Wal-mart for about $1. and think of all the prints! polka dot, striped! mixing colors! make red & green ones for christmas! what about 4th of July ones?! what's even better is you can fold them back up and store them to use them as long as they'll hold up! 

i found these on pinterest too! think of all the possibilities.

{images via pinterest "tissue paper pom pom" search}

i even made a fringe one like the one i mentioned earlier that i thought would be pretty.
cute huh?!

i used a ribbon instead of wire. though wire would be good so you can just measure the length of your string, ribbon, yarn, whatever you use when hanging your pom pom. also, i would recommend not fluffing them until the day of, or until you're ready to hang them. they are easier to transfer that way too {for a party at a different location}

however you choose to use them, whatever color, size, or print you choose to use for them, i promise you'll love the way they look!

Friday, August 5, 2011

a day in the life...

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!

so i haven't been linking up with the inspiration workshop because i haven't really been feeling inspired... not to blog anyway. as i told you before, {here} i have lots of "work" to do. a cape, a WHOLE bedding set, 7 hats, that on top of building up inventory for the Northwest Arkansas Craft Fair.

week 10's prompt though was A DAY IN THE LIFE... this i can do! i even took {some} pictures!

first this is what i wish my day was like:

  • 6:30/7am wake up, do yoga, have breakfast.
  • 8am wake up kids, feed them breakfast, get them dressed.
  • 9am - sesame street. duh!
  • 10am - outside play with the kids {while it's not super hot out}
  • 11am - isabella naps. D colors, or helps me while I unload the dishwasher, do the dishes from breakfast & get lunch ready.
  • 12:00pm lunch with D
  • 12:30pm Isabella wakes up & has lunch
  • 1pm - 3pm kids play while i clean up & blog or sew or something fun.
  • 3pm - 4pm snack movie time
  • 4pm -  isabella's nap time play with D
  • 5pm-7pm get pre-scheduled dinner ready,
  • 7pm isabella wakes up, have dinner with kids & billy {maybe mathew if he's home}, 
  • 8pm - bath time for the kiddos
  • 8:15pm - isabella's bed time
  • 8:30pm - D's bed time
  • 9pm - clean up the kitchen make some raspberry tea
  • 9:30-11pm - sew, blog, watch a movie or trashy reality tv, while i drink my tea. or  go to starbucks. any other # of things i want to do really...
  • 11pm- bed time.
  • 11:30-6:30am sleep... UNINTERRUPTED SLEEP. 
but reality is this:
  • 9am - trying to get as much sleep as possible. only wake up because the kids wake up. darn kids needing food & caring.
  • 9:something - find something for them to eat for breakfast, eggs, yogurt & fruit... cereal. something quick. 
  • 9:30 get me something to eat, more than likely a parfait {vanilla yogurt, thawed frozen fruit, with granola}, or just some saltines.... whatever it is Isabella eats most of it even though she just had her own breakfast. while we watch sesame street or yesterdays episode of The View on Hulu. we sit on the couch and "wake up" for the day. hand in nose & mouth included

  • 10-11am... hang out. check email, etc... maybe get dressed.
  • 11:30am isabella goes down for a nap. me & D unload the dishwasher and clean up the kitchen from breakfast... some days...
  • 12:00pm try and figure out what to make for lunch. end up fixing something easy. pb&j side of strawberries, cheese & carrot sticks.
  • 1pm Isabella gets up & i feed her lunch.  i eat the same thing they did or just some saltines... whatever it is Isabella eats most of it even though she just had her own lunch.
  • 1:30pm go outside because more than likely we didn't go outside earlier. {now it's the hottest time of the day of course}

  • 1 -1:45pm we play outside, swing... lay in the hammock... until we almost die from the heat..
  • 2pm go inside & recover from the heat, apple juice all around... except for me, i have lemonade... ok fine! pepsi. sue me! 
  • 3pm - isabella's nap time & scenerio #1- i'm kind of tired too. & d is really cranky so i'll lay down with him for a bit. don't wake up until 6. scenerio #2- kids lay down i waste time on facebook scenerio #3- now that i'm not on facebook anymore i spend time crocheting or sewing, or even cleaning!!
  • 5pm - start scrambling for dinner.
  • 5:30pm - D wakes up freaking out, confused.
  • 6pm - get back to trying to figure out dinner, isabella wakes up
  • 6:30/7pm - have dinner with kids & billy {maybe mathew if he's home} we eat quesadillas, spaghetti, something quick. i eat the same thing they do or just some saltines... whatever it is Isabella eats most of it even though she just had her own dinner.
  • 8:30pm - isabella's bed time. D's not tired because of that nap he took. 
  • 9pm -10pm- isabella's still awake singing & talking in her crib. she lets out a fake cry every 15 minutes or so. Douglas "i dont' want  to go to bed i'm not tired". when i finally make him go to bed & watch a movie he keeps getting up because he has to pee 500 times, or says his tummy hurts, but not really. 
  • 10pm - i remember i should have made me some tea, but instead i'm cleaning the kitchen from dinner. go check on Isabella. her room smells like crap. the middle of the night pooper strikes again!
  • 11pm D finally falls asleep. mathew needs something, remind billy what time it is & that he's supposed to be up in 4 hours. 
  • 11:30pm finally get my tea & sit on the couch with my lap top for a bit. hear scratching at the door. forgot about the freaking dog. watch something. get sucked in. start blogging/editing pics/crocheting/anything else that keeps me up until 1am
  • 1am - bed time.
  • 3am - d comes into bed with us
  • 7am - wake up because D almost pushed me off the bed & my arm is asleep from trying to sleep on the edge. tell myself i just need another hour. need to get isabella up at 8.
  • 9am - be disappointed that i didn't get up earlier & start all over again.

all this. besides the fact that Isabella is at the stage where she's into everything... so when she's awake you have to be with her. she listens great. doesn't get hurt. but she's very curious about the toilet & reaching into it, D doesn't always flush. she's so fast she disappears, so basically you're on "Isabella watch" the whole time she's awake. trying to get a shower in there somewhere, changing diapers, doing laundry, picking up toys, & keeping the peace.

here's to more days like the wish list at top & less days like this past tuesday, thursday {2nd list}

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


  • Isabella's been feeling better. no fevers, no puking. one molar is all the way through. but i wonder, does that mean she'll fever & puke when every single molar comes in?? that's a fear of mine. she's still a bit cranky though. and since she's walking everywhere she's into everything. wants to touch everything, eat everything, take everything.
  • Douglas doesn't want to wear pants. 
  • mathew's been home since this post. talk about a little too much time together.
  • last tuesday i went to PF Changs with a few of my "mommy friends". didn't see anyone or go anywhere else the rest of the week. well except my in-laws but they don't really count do they??! but last night Liz & i did get to hang out for a bit. {pictures to come} and today we're going over to Amanda's for a little playdate. i think the kids need  out of this house as much as i do.
  • Billy.
  • i have a cape order to fill, a long with an order for 5 "beary cute" hats, and 2 Isabella hats with bows. all this on top of the bedding set i'm working on for liz. 
  • i have so many drafts started for blog posts. but then these children and people keep needing food, or their butts wiped. well the kids need their butts wiped.
  • oh! mathew did change a poopy diaper last night while i was out. Isabella is the middle of the night pooper.
  • last night i went grocery shopping. like super late. after my "date" with liz. as soon as i got my groceries put in the car a couple of guys pulled in to the space close to me and one of the guys, a nice looking one, asked me for my cart, he put it in the cart thing for me. it's a toss up in my head of whether he was hitting on me or thought i was pregnant & needed help. lets go with the hitting on me one. 
  • i don't miss facebook. i feel cleansed.
that's whats been happening!