Wednesday, August 24, 2016

DIY Camp Pillows with Envelope Enclosure / Sandbanks Camping

Summer fun needs to include at least one camping trip.   To get a great site (or any site) at the most popular beaches in Ontario, you need to book early.   We were lucky to get a campsite at Sandbanks Provincial Park.  This place is our favourite because the beaches are amazing!

Camping with kids seems to mean the kids stuff takes up 80% of our trunk.  Hubby and I are left with next to nothing.  After last year's camping trip, I told everyone that bulky pillows were not allowed.  However, after a year passed, I softened my stance because I had an idea.  Why not cut up some old pillows and make mini pillows!

All you need to do is take an old pillow and cut it in half.  Pin the fabric together and sew (or serge) the ends.  That's it!  You can use an old pillowcase or make new ones.  I chose to make new ones and followed parts of a tutorial from Make it Love it.

The best part of the pillowcases were that they were enclosed so even if dropped, the pillow wasn't going to fall out.  The second best part was using stash fabric that was over 8 years old :o)

Here are the kids pillows:

Here are ours again

Right now because the kids are young, they are living a life of luxury (air mattress, their own tent, all the comforts of home...), while we are roughing it in sleeping bags and roll out mats.

Our site was great - except for the family of skunks living near our site.  Little guy had no idea that while he was wandering around the site, there was a family of skunks behind the tent.  Eek!

The water tap wasn't too far away.

We ate well every day.

We visited all 3 beaches - Dunes Beach, Outlet Beach, and Sandbanks Beach.  All were lovely but I have a thing for the dunes beach.  The sand is so soft and it's so much fun to run down the dunes.


The kids were never bored, although it helped to bring along some Scooby Doo comics.

We were sad to go.  It's always harder to take down a camp site vs putting one up.  But the weather was great and it was a breeze.   Goodbye site 71!

We went back to Sandbanks beach one more time before we did the 3 hour drive home.  So pretty...

I'm so glad the kids like camping.  There's something about being in nature which is very different from staying at a cottage.  However, I must say... roughing the outdoors is so much nicer when you have your own mini camp pillow!

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Thursday, August 18, 2016

DIY Yoga Mat Sling

A few years ago, I used to take #1 to outdoor yoga at the bandstand.  He was smaller back then and although he was able to handle a one hour yoga class, he wasn't able to handle the walk.  Now that he's a whiz on his bike, we decided to go to Yoga again, but on our bikes.

I had a hard time imagining how I was going to carry two yoga mats, water, snacks, and a light t shirt.  Our bicycle handlebar bags solved the problem of where to put our water and snacks.  But we still needed to figure out how to transport our yoga mats. 

Lucky for me, I had seen some yoga mat slings at the store and googled some simple instructions.  I had about 20 min to spare and wasn't about to re-invent anything. 

I used some stash fabric that I had from when I used to sew stroller bags.  It matches my purple yoga mat!  My tube of fabric was about 80" long.

We hopped on our bikes and raced to the bandstand.  We weren't able to get a spot in front of the teacher, but I like it better on the shady bandstand vs in the hot sun.  (no... those aren't my toes)

Someone was very relaxed and sleepy.

This was such an easy sewing project, but well worth it!  It's so small and easier to commit to vs a yoga bag.

Here we are with my emergency bag and water bottle.

We stopped off at the community chalkboard to write a little "hope for the future".

On the way home, we ran into #2 and Dada.  My little photographer took a pic of me wearing the yoga mat sling.  It fits really well but was so heavy due to the two mats.

It is worth repeating again that it was very heavy carrying two yoga mats, but I survived!  Unfortunately, weekly outdoor yoga sessions became just one as I now have a bout of recurring tendonitis which could have been aggravated by any number of things (sewing, knitting, yoga, push ups, etc)

Time for a break, 
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Sunday, July 03, 2016

Summer Sewing: Bicycle Handlebar Bag

Introducing... the bicycle handlebar bag!

Growing up, my mom sewed us all sorts of things.  We had little pouches and bags for buttons, our dolls, and everything imaginable.  I grew up knowing there was a pouch or pocket for all of life's emergencies.   When my kids were old enough to start riding trikes, they too got a pouch for their bikes to hold all of their treasures.  Here's a link to the original tricycle handlebar bag and here's the updated tricycle handlebar bag with different strap connectors. 

I love sewing for my boys but when I'm done working on their projects, I don't always have time to sew for myself.  This bike bag is all for me and I've been wanting to do this for more than a year!   I was thrilled when Sew Mama Sew asked a bunch of us sewing bloggers to create a summer bag using Manchester Metallics by Robert Kaufman fabrics.  I said "yes" right away and waited patiently for the fabric to come in.

I am so happy with the way it turned out!   The applique has such a nice sheen to it. 

Here's a view of the sides.  The outer is Essex linen in "natural" and you can see the Manchester Metallics Onyx peaking out beside the zipper. 

Here's a view of the bottom.  I usually quilt in a diamond pattern but I like quilted stripes as it feels more like summer.

Here's the back view.  I used D rings to connect the bag to the bike but there are plenty of combinations that could be used (backpack connectors, velcro, etc).

Here's a view of the top.  Next time, I will orient the zipper the other way.  I am right handed and I would prefer to unzip from left to right.

Here's the lining.  It's so soft... It's called Chambray Union "indigo".  Next time, I will include a secret hidden pocket to store loose change and some small bills.  You never know when you will  need to make an emergency ice cream stop!

It's a tiny bag but you can put a lot in it!  I plan on keeping this on my bike permanently so I have somewhere to keep my phone and other emergency items like bandaids and tissues. 

However, for those times when I need to leave my bike unattended, this bike bag also fits my emergency zipper pouch.  I can just pull it out and away I go.

Looks so nice on my bike.  It's the perfect fit and won't add too much weight to my bike.

This has by far been one of my favourite projects ever :o).  Nothing says summer like riding a bike and feeling the wind in your hair...  well, the strands that aren't covered up by my helmet!!!

Check out some of the other amazing designs from my fellow blog friends:

Mo Bedell
Sandy Whitelaw of UpStairs Hobby Room
Michelle Morris of That Black Chic
Kathy Green of Designs by KTGreen
Carrie Federer of carrie bee
Anne Zeitler of AnneZPlace
Sanchia Gair of Red Brolly
Natalie Strand of Vegetablog
Devida Bushrod of The Driftwood Thimble
Sara Johansen of The Sara Project
Sarah Sharp of No Hats in the House
Michelle Webster of michellepatterns
Marni Weaver of Haberdashery Fun

Here's one last picture :o)

Happy sewing and I hope you are enjoying your summer!

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