Quiet book – most time consuming project ever? Mmmm…yes, but worth it!

I just had to share with you one of my favorite Christmas gifts this year – not to receive, but to make and give!

This year I made two quiet books for two adorable kids.  I’m definitely not recommending this as a quick and easy DIY gift to make.  No, ma’am!  Don’t plan on making one of these babies unless you want to invest a couple weeks of your time.  Really.  It did take me that long – but I think it was definitely worth it.  I don’t know how the kiddos feel, but I sure love these quiet books!

As I mentioned, I made two of these – a girl’s version for Megan, and a boy’s version for little Forrest.  I didn’t get pictures of Forrest’s taken before the gift was wrapped, so I’m counting on Forrest’s mama Rachel, over at Maybe Matilda to take some pictures of that one.  But here are some pictures of Megan’s book.

The tree has green leaves for spring, pink flowers for summer, and  colorful leaves for fall.

Write a letter to grandma, and get one in return!

Okay – this page may be my favorite.  My daughter Bekah actually came up with the idea for this one and the page that faces it.  We all know little girls love to play with hair (this one’s can be braided), and get all jazzed up with hair bows, necklaces, jewelry, etc.  Little Megan can do it all right here!

The purple purse holds all the hair bows and the jewelry.  Plus we threw in some keys, a fake license (courtesy of Bekah’s graphic design skills – isn’t it adorable?), and some chapstick.

What little girl doesn’t dream of being a ballerina some day?  Practice lacing up those slippers!

This page is also a favorite of mine.  Mostly because of the adorable little clothes (and the dresser to keep them in!).

Forrest’s book was much more manly, of course, and included pages with a toolbox and tools, a road with road signs and a car, and a robot.

Even though it was very time consuming, I had so much fun making these!  I’m even thinking of adding a couple more pages I’ve been dreaming up.

Yes, I definitely think I’ll do that – after I catch up on all the housework that didn’t get done while I was working on these!


Need a last-minute DIY gift? 30 minute boot cuffs!

Are you all set for Christmas?  Wwhaaat??  You’re not?!

Actually I’m faking surprise because I confess that I have a few little things to finish up myself.   Hey, I’ve still got a good 36 hours here! It doesn’t seem to matter how early I start,  I’m always scrambling at the last minute to get the finishing touches on just a few more things!

Here’s one of the projects I’ll be finishing up in the next, oh, 30 minutes or so….even though I haven’t even started yet.  Yep, it’s that quick – and easy too!

Super cute, and super easy crocheted boot cuffs.  Aren’t they adorable?  I love them because you get the look of a nice, thick boot sock, without all that bulk inside your boot.

Here’s what they look like sans boot:

You can find the free tutorial here on Ravelry.  (To be honest here, I didn’t think that  they looked all that cute in the photo on Ravelry, but it all depends on the yarn you choose.)

Give ’em a try – and I’d love to see how they turn out for you.

Your hair is like…..bricks

When my third son was in 1st grade, one of the little projects his teacher had the students make was a fill-in-the-blank book for Mother’s Day.  It had sweet little phrases like “I love my mom because her eyes are like ___________”; “I love my mom because she feeds me _____________”.  And of course, the children would fill in the blanks and draw little pictures.

I loved my “I Love My Mom Because” book from Jake.  It was sweet, and childish, and funny.  My favorite line, though, which always brings a laugh when any of our kids are flipping through the scrapbook stuff, is  “I love my mom because her hair is like… bricks”   Yep.  That’s the best he could come up with. Bricks.

Maybe that was the start of my fondness for bricks – I don’t know for sure.  But whatever the origins,  I really appreciate the texture, the warmth, and the grounded feel that bricks bring to a house. Especially in the form of exposed brick walls.  I absolutely LOVE them, and I’ve always wanted an exposed brick wall in one of my houses.

Isn’t this beautiful?!  So much more personality than a painted wall.


This bedroom is so soft and frilly looking….until you add in that brick wall. Then it becomes more than just frills.  The brick adds  substance, and texture, and loads of interest.


And the rooms with exposed brick walls don’t always have to look rustic, either, as evidenced by this room.


This bedroom has a real industrial-vibe going, thanks in part to the exposed piping holding up the light fixture, but also due to the exposed brick wall.


And I’m not such a purist that I can’t enjoy painted brick.

niteowl06: West Elm office space, 2x2 desk


Look at the incredible exposed brick wall in this trolley-depot-made-into-a-house.  Gorgeous!


Sigh.  One of these days I’ll get my exposed brick wall, but until then, I’ll just drool over these pictures for a while longer….