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Silhouettes Pillows

Silhouettes are so trendy right now, and I have totally caught the bug! I love silhouettes and have them displayed all over my house. I have them of my children, my husband and I, my dog, off birds on my wallpaper,  I even have some of people I don’t know hanging in my dining room. So when I was considering recovering some shabby pillows that we have had for ten years, full of holes, a little outdated, and stained, I thought I would like to incorporate more silhouettes!

To do this project you will need:

*Old pillows or pillow forms

*Profile pictures of your subjects

*A computer with printer

*Fusible webbing (I used this kind from Walmart which was less than $3)

*Thread for hand and machine stitching

*Two different fabrics-one for the background and main part of the pillow, and one darker for the silhouette. For Henry’s pillow, I used burlap, which I do not recommend for this project. I found out belatedly that the fusible web doesn’t stick to it, so I had to go the extra mile and applique it on by machine.

To start, I picked my favorite subjects: the kids, and my dog, Henry, who is like one of our kids.I made the kids stand against the wall (as you can see I came up with this brilliant idea right after dinner, hence the bibs). With Henry, it was a little trickier making him sit still while I took this shot…a treat being held a few inches from his nose might have been involved…

Next, I uploaded the images on my computer, and used a program to edit them, playing with the shadows and exposure so that their faces stood out against the background.I printed their images to use as a stencil, and traced their images on the back of the fusible webbing. As a note, if you want your picture to appear in the same direction as you took the picture, print it as a mirror image.

After I traced the picture, I cut them out and ironed them on the back of my accent fabrics. Then, I cut out around the fabric and ironed it on to the front of my background fabric. If you really want to ensure that your silhouettes won’t come off, you can applique them by hand or machine. I opted not to, except for with Henry’s because the webbing didn’t stick to the burlap.I then started the demolition process on my pillows. Since I bought these, I wasn’t sure what I would find inside, whether it would be an actual pillow form or just stuffing. Since it was just stuffing in all three pillows, it gave me a little more freedom to make sizes I wanted. However, for one of the pillows, I did use the fabric as a sort of template when I was cutting out my fabric. You can either use a ripper or a good old fashioned pair of scissors. Never one to turn down the opportunity to take a short cut, I opted for the scissors.Cut out the shape of the pillow you want, and sew around the edges, wrong sides together, and leave a small opened so you can turn the fabric right side out.After you turn the pillows right side out, stuff them, and stitch the opening with a hand stitch. If you are feeling more creative, you can make your own pillow form, then just make a cover that you can take on and off using a zipper or make envelope sham. As I said, with two kids at home, full-time ministry, and an online business, for my home projects, I like to take shortcuts when I can.:)

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Snow Milkshakes

It is the middle of January and it has only snowed about three times this year, and I am already lamenting over it! When the snow comes, it always feels like it has never left. I have two little kids at home, and so often we all get a little cabin fever being cooped up inside. We like to play out in the snow, sometimes, when it is dark outside because the snow is so white it illuminates everything and our backyard looks almost as bright as daylight. We like to light a fire in the fireplace my husband and I built in the backyard last fall, and pull the kids around on the snow shovel since we have yet to invest in any actual sleds.

Last year a friend of mine told me this ingenious idea of making milkshakes out of the snow. When I was a kid, I used to love eating the snow, and of course I love milkshakes! He said his mom used to make them with him when he was little, so it is a tradition I wanted to start with my kids. Maybe some of you are thinking that this post is lame because this is a tradition you and your family have and maybe I am the last one to hear about it, but for those of you who might be like me, and this is new to you, I wanted to pass it along! It’s fun, easy, and most importantly, yummy, and something you can do with your kids!First, fill your cup up with fresh snow. Make sure it is filled to the top, especially if it is fluffier snow, because once you add the other ingredients it will quickly begin to melt.

Next add vanilla, or another flavoring you prefer. Peppermint would be yummy! You can also jazz it up with chocolate syrup if you want to make a chocolate milkshake.Next add sugar to taste. I usually put it 1-3 tsp. depending on how large my cup is. Make sure you take into account the sugar in other things you might add for flavoring, like chocolate syrup which already has sugar in it.Next, fill to top with milk. And then…Add a fun straw, and enjoy!