Wednesday, December 28, 2011

making a shopping cart cover

so i'm off on break, and i thought i'd try making this shopping cart cover from the crafty gemini:

but, being 30 miles away from the nearest fabric store, i looked at what i had on hand. i had exactly enough fleece left over from sam's halloween owl costume to make one 42 by 45 side (her measurements from the video) and the elastic, along with some thread.

the cover in the link is gorgeous, and mine is just plain brown fleece. if you don't care about "gorgeous" or if doing this cart cover seems daunting (i saw others that had binding and fancy all kinds of things, and i didn't even want to go there), then you can try my adaptation. (of course, you can use whatever kind of fleece you like - pink, patterned, etc.)

follow the directions in the video to around 2:57. i didn't use a second piece of fabric (i didn't have enough, and i wanted to try a short cut), so i stopped after this and cut out the circles for the legs and the slits for the straps.

then i pinned around the outside edges of the fleece, giving it just about a one-inch hem (give or take a bit) all the way around. it's curved on the "corners," so you will have to do some "folding in" - basically pleats along the curves (i think i have around 6 to 8 pleats on my cover) to keep the hem going around the edge without just running off. please excuse all of the "quotation marks."

here's one of the little folds - note the imperfection (you will never notice it when you are grocery shopping - i promise)

here are two very near one another, already stitched

one fold will do, because fleece doesn't fray, so you don't actually need a hem - the "hem" you are making is the casing for the elastic that will hold your cover on the cart.

this will need to be sewed (i used a machine) all the way around, EXCEPT for an opening maybe 3/4 to 1 inch wide to thread the elastic into the hem.

start back on the video at 7:40. here she shows how to run the elastic through the casing. BE SURE to pin the end you are not threading to the fabric or it will go inside the hem and be nearly impossible to get out. use a large safety pin as your threader if you have one, but a smaller one will do as well (it's more tedious with a smaller safety pin, and you may wish to stop for a coffee break at some point in the threading process; that is ok).

you can stop following the video at about 9:13. i didn't stitch the rest of my hem shut because i did it so differently than she did in the video. i just left it with that tiny gap in the stitching. if you aren't sure how to make your machine zigzag stitch, look at the manual to your sewing machine or google it, and be sure to adjust your tension accordingly. i am still learning how to use mine, and i wouldn't come close to being able to explain it.

i did do a zigzag stitch around the leg openings and the slits for the straps, but this is completely unnecessary.
(please note, it is not stitched SHUT. i basically added a little border.)

is this the prettiest cart cover ever? no, but it IS easy, it may have taken around 2 hours (probably less if i worked straight through) to finish, and it does the job of covering the germ-covered front cart basket so that you can get groceries and your child can ride along without chewing on the handle of the cart.

got it? awesome! now go make one, because it's way cheaper than buying one! if i can do it, so can you.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

sam's first christmas

sam opening a book from us on christmas eve:

sam wanted to talk about his first christmas on the way home today:

we have soaked up every special moment with this little boy this christmas. i hope your christmas was as joyful as ours was.

Friday, December 16, 2011

sam laughing at calvin, 5 months

sam loves calvin. calvin has played by making this funny growl noise since he was about 3 pounds. sam thinks it is hilarious when he growls and flips his toys around.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

keeping christ in christmas

this morning on the news, they showed a display someone had put up of a skeleton dressed in a santa outfit hanging on a cross. whatever statement some wannabe artist was trying to make, exactly, is lost on even this art major. someone commented on the station's facebook page about it, something to the effect of, "for heaven's sake, it's christmas, not atheistmas!"

um...did you mean "it's santamas?" because the last i checked, santa was not born in a manger, nor did he die on the cross for my sins to rise again and make every sad thing untrue (a song lyric i heard this week and really loved). not that i mind santa, but the statement made absolutely no sense whatsoever. christmas and Christ have nothing to do with santa, but this person acted as if this demented piece of "art" compromised christmas and threatened the christian faith.

lately, as with each december in this social media age, i have seen a lot of facebook posts about being darn sure to say merry christmas instead of happy holidays. i'm not trying to say there's anything wrong with posting that with the motive of making sure that Jesus is the center of attention at christmas.

here's the thing: Jesus should be the center of our attention always.

saying "merry christmas" in december is not just some tradition to keep. if the only time you are concerned with keeping Christ in anything is at christmas time in the phrase "merry christmas," then it shouldn't matter to you if people say "happy holidays" or even nothing at all.

yes, it is important for our society to acknowledge christmas and not just gloss over it and lump it together with other december holidays. however, if you are glossing Christ over for the rest of the year, then you aren't showing anyone WHY it is important to keep Christ in christmas, and instead you just look like a jerk.

Jesus will make an impact through us if we live for Him and follow Him. if the only way people know you are a christian is by your demand to be told "merry christmas" instead of "happy hanukkah," then you are doing something wrong.


(please no hater comments about santa or saying "merry christmas" - if you came out of this blog mad about what i said about either, then you misunderstood what i wrote.)