Unicorn Birthday Party – Pumpkin is 4!!

Today my sweet, little Pumpkin turns 4 years old!  It’s hard to believe!  We celebrated over the weekend with a unicorn themed birthday party.  Pumpkin was in unicorn heaven!!

Unicorn birthday party dessert tableThe dessert table is always the star of the show.  We had a unicorn head on the wall (from Target, borrowed from Pumpkin’s bedroom), streamers, a simple cake with a glitter unicorn and stars cut from my Silhouette Cameo, pastel marshmallows, iced cookies and felt unicorn horns that I made for each of the kids.

Unicorn birthday party cakeI had grand plans for icing a unicorn on the cake, but wasn’t feeling too artistic the morning of the party, so I went down to the craft studio and cut out some glitter shapes and stuck them on lollipop sticks and plopped them into the cake.  And added a frosting border and added some silver sprinkles.  And called it a day on the cake.

Unicorn birthday party iced cookiesI think I had already used up all my artistic abilities on the cookies.  I made cut out cookies with sprinkles and iced them with royal icing.  And sprinkled some with sanding sugar to make them sparkle.  I was tickled pink with how the unicorns turned out.  Pumpkin was tickled pink that they had sprinkles.

Unicorn birthday party cookies

Unicorn birthday partyI kept the food simple.  Mini corn dogs, mac and cheese, fruit, veggies, cheese and crackers and chips.  All big hits with the adults and kids alike.

Unicorn birthday partyFor craft time the kids painted unicorn suncatchers. And surprisingly they didn’t make a huge mess.

Unicorn birthday party - Pin the horn on the unicornAnd they played Pin the Horn on the Unicorn.  I sketched out and colored the unicorn on a piece of poster board and cut the horns out of glitter cardstock. 

Unicorn birthday partyPumpkin laid out the ground rules for present opening.  They were all supposed to stay on their bottoms and behind the line.  That line kept inching up until she and I were trapped in the corner…………

Unicorn birthday partyShe joined in with the other kids in singing “Happy Birthday”.  And was so pleased with herself when she blew out all four candles in one breath.

Unicorn birthday party cake and ice creamWe had unicorn cake and unicorn ice cream.  Pumpkin and I had a lot of fun making these together the day before the party.

Unicorn birthday partyAnd the sweet birthday girl looked adorable in her Made for Mermaids Brooklyn/Riley mashup with glitter heat transfer vinyl unicorn and stars.

She told me she loved everything about her party and I couldn’t be happier.  I loved seeing her face light up with every detail and watch her have so much fun. 

The past 4 years have flown by.  She’s still as sassy as the day she was born.  And still as sweet.  She’s such a loving, snuggly, expressive, and funny girl.  Oh how I wish I could keep her little forever. 


M4M Best Friends Collection

Made for Mermaids had another new pattern release yesterday!  This time it’s the Skipper Skirt, Stacey Top and Barbie Headband!  That’s right!  Three new patterns!  And there was a rerelease of the Hailey and Rose patterns.  You can get them either in a bundle of the 3 new patterns or all 5 patterns until Sunday.  Or they can also be purchased individually.  So, you want to see how cute they are?

Stacey and Skipper patterns from Made for MermaidsPumpkin of course loves this outfit because it’s full of ruffles!  She loves the ruffles of the skirt and the ruffly shirt. 

Stacey and Skipper patterns from Made for MermaidsIt’s the perfect compromise outfit for us because she always wants to wear skirts or dresses and I always need her to have leggings underneath.  The Skipper Skirt has 3 legging options; shorts, capris or pants.  So it’s a pattern I can sew every season!

Stacey and Skipper patterns from Made for MermaidsThe Stacey Top has lots of options, too!  Short sleeve, 3/4 sleeve, long sleeve.  Pocket, bib with ruffle, elbow patches, tabs for the roll up sleeves.  

Stacey and Skipper patterns from Made for MermaidsOh, and did I mention you can make the skirt with knit or woven fabric?  The polka dots above are knit.  The arrows are cotton woven.  The main part of the shirt and the leggings need to be knit, though.  And I used these great solid knits from Purple Seamstress

Stacey and Skipper patterns from Made for MermaidsNot only does Pumpkin love these patterns, but Cupcake does, too.  I just knew she would be excited about a butterfly skirt.  She’s been eyeing this fabric in my stash for quite some time.  Luckily I had some navy knit to go with it, so she got a whole outfit, too.

Stacey and Skipper patterns from Made for MermaidsI was super excited to try out the 3/4 rolled up sleeves on her outfit.  And I think they’re adorable!  She loves the pocket.  She wore this outfit to school the other day and came home with a little piece of paper folded up in her pocket.  #loveher

Stacey and Skipper patterns from Made for MermaidsThe star of the show is this headband, though.  She was over the moon excited about a matching headband.  She, of course, wore it to school with the rest of the outfit.  And then the next day with another outfit.  And she wants me to make a bunch more. 

This outfit sews up so quick, so I know I’ll be adding more of these to their wardrobe.  It’s a new favorite!!!

Be sure to pick up your copy of these patterns while they’re still on sale!  (through Sunday, 10/2)


Market to Market Relay 2016 Recap

Last Saturday was my favorite race of the year!  Market to Market Relay Ohio.  This was my third year participating in the race (and it’s also the race’s 3rd year).  New this year was an earlier start time.  In the past 6 AM was the earliest start time, but this year they added 5:00 and 5:30 waves.  Lucky us drew the 5 AM wave. So the day started at 2:30 AM.  It’s so hard to wake up so early!!

Upon arrival at the start line (which is an hour away from home!) we picked up our “baton” and proceeded to the photographer for our official costume contest photo.  If you’ve read my previous years’ recaps you know the costume contest is my favorite part of this race (2015 and 2014).  We’ve won the costume contest both years and we were looking for a threepeat!

Market to Market Relay Ohio - fruit running costumesWe went with a fruit theme and everyone got to pick what fruit they wanted to be.  I sewed all the costumes using Patterns for Pirates’ Essential Tank and embellished them with heat transfer vinyl and/or screen printing paint.  I had a little help with the HTV on the strawberry and watermelon.  I also made the headbands out of felt.  I was so excited to see us all together looking so cute!

We sent our first runner (grapes) over to the start line and at 5 AM the trombone wielding, pink fuzzy guy led the pack.

Market to Market Relay start lineShe ran in the dark.  Runner #2 ran in the dark and I started in the dark as well as my leg started around 6:40.  Thankfully halfway through my first leg the sun started to make it’s way up and I was able to turn off the headlamp and see where I was going.  I was feeling pretty good about my run, but keeping my pace a bit on the slower side as I was anticipating a 5 mile run.  Turns out the leg was only 4.3 miles, so I was saving gas for no reason.  But I had two legs ahead of me so I was happy with that.  And well, we’re in it to win the costumes, not the race.  😉

Market to Market Relay Ohio

It was a beautiful morning and we all ran through our first leg feeling good.  Then it was back to the top.  By the time my second leg rolled around the sun was shining really bright and the heat and humidity were really picking up.

dsc_1538I threw on my visor to give me some sun protection (blue eyes problem) and grabbed my handheld water bottle and braced myself for a 5.6 mile leg. 

Market to Market Relay Ohio I started the leg feeling pretty good.  I didn’t get very far before the wind knocked my pineapple top off my head, so I ended up having to just carry it.  So, with a water bottle in one hand and a pineapple top in the other I cruised through the first two miles of the leg.  I could definitely feel the heat, but I had the shade of the trees to help it feel somewhat bearable.  But I spend the next 3.6 in the sun.  The hot, hot sun.  I was fading fast, but I told myself I just ease back and keep running until I was passed by April (she’s was on our 3rd M2M team and I knew she would pass me on this leg).  But just before 4 miles I needed a break.  So I walked.  I poured a little water on my head, drank a little and tried to give myself a pep talk.  I started running again and right at 4 miles April caught up to me.  We chatted for a minute and then she went on ahead.  I had been playing leapfrog with another runner and in commiserating about the heat she mentioned it was lunch time.  And then it dawned on me that I hadn’t eaten!  No wonder I had no energy.  It was now after noon and all I had eaten was an egg sandwich at 3 AM and a Quest Bar after my first leg (around 7:30). 

I hopped in the van after my leg and devoured my lunch!  We continued moving through our legs, chatting with other teams along the way, occasionally  running into our two other teams, and just having fun.  We sent runner 7 out on her second leg and shortly after we got a notice of a lightning delay.  Our poor lemon had to run the last 2 miles of her leg in the pouring rain with a lightning rod on her head!  (the headbands were made of foil wrapped in felt)

Market to Market Relay 2016For every 30 minutes of lightning we had to move forward an exchange point.  So we waited for a bit, then moved on.  So runner #8 didn’t get to run her second leg.  And at the next exchange it was the same situation. And then again.  It had been stormed for an hour and a half at this point.  So we just hung out in the van, sang along to the radio, ate lots of chips and begged the lightning to stop so we could run the last leg of the race.  We made it to the last exchange point and decided whoever wanted to run could run.  And our second team was planning to do the same, so we could all finish together.  Just as we were preparing to head to the path a huge streak of lightning flashed right where we were standing, so we packed up and drove to the finish line exchange.  We ran in for the team finish and our 2016 relay was in the books. 

Market to Market Relay OhioDespite the disappointing ending to the day we still had a great time and are looking forward to doing it again next year. 

We hung out a big after the race for our free pizza and beer and to hear the result of the costume contest.  Even though they wouldn’t be able to hand out the time awards because of the adjustments that needed to be made for the lightning delays we were told they would announce the contest winners.  Finally it was time!  After a quick tally of the votes the costume contest winners were announced and once again we won!!!

Market to Market Relay OhioI tell you what.  Waiting for those results and listening to them announce the runners up is torture for me.  A lot of thought and hard work goes into our homemade costumes, so it really means a lot to me.  My team is awesome for wearing the silly headbands I made for them or carrying them while they ran! 

So, now the pressure is on!  It’s time to start thinking about next year’s costumes!  We’ve got a reputation to maintain! 


Ava and Mama Ava

What sounds super fun to do on an 80 degree morning?  Take pictures in long sleeved shirts!  I’m getting a head start on my fall wardrobe with the new pattern from Made for Mermaids.  The Ava and Mama Ava patterns are the perfect relaxed fit top and tunic to go with all your leggings and skinny jeans this fall!

Mama Ava from Made for MermaidsI sewed up this v-neck sweater knit in the top length to pair with skinny jeans. It’s going to be so cozy this winter! 

Made for Mermaids Mama AvaI love the relaxed fit without feeling sloppy. 

Made for Mermaids AvaAnd how cute is this curved hem tunic on Cupcake?  Oh, this is the perfect top for leggings!  And I just loved this striped fabric and knew she would, too.  This is her new favorite shirt!

Made for Mermaids AvaI love this one on her, too!  The key to this top is fabric choice!  You need something drapey and flowy!  This rayon/spandex blend is exactly that! 

Mama Ava and Ava by Made for MermaidsCupcake didn’t love this one as much as the other, until she saw momma had a matching shirt! 

There are 2 neckline options, 3 hemline options and 3 sleeve length options with this pattern.  So you can mix and match for your perfect combination.

Mama Ava by Made for MermaidsThis is such a fast sew and on sale through Sunday, so you should head over and pick up these patterns before then!  Buy one or buy both in a specially priced bundle!

Mama Ava and Ava by Made for Mermaids


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Friday Fitness: Triathlon Recap

So last week I mentioned that I had signed up for a triathlon.  I wavered quite a bit on whether or not to sign up for it and in the end I’m so glad I did!!  The event was a small, local race, right here in my hometown.  It was a sprint tri, but instead of swimming the first leg was paddling.  As a solo participant I was in a kayak.  (Doubles were in a canoe).  I have some kayaking experience as my in laws now have a kayak at the lake house!  It’s so fun kayaking on a quiet lake in the morning.  But this wasn’t a quiet lake.

20160821_074421This was a moving river.  And there were lots of other people in it.  And even though I rented a recreational kayak when I arrived at the start line all that was left were the performance kayaks.  In talking with some guys at the starting line there were 4 kayaks dropped off and the guys grabbed the first two (the recreational kayaks) and left the other two (much larger kayaks) for me and another girl.  I tried to convince them to trade since the store I rented it from picked a kayak for me based on my size (which was smaller than those two guys!) but they weren’t having it.  So I was stuck with a kayak that was much larger than anticipated.  I was having a hard time keeping it straight and almost ran into about 6 people.  I felt so bad! It took me about a mile of the 2.5 mile course to get comfortable with the kayak and find my groove (and start passing people). 

Based on my practice runs I thought it would take me about 40 minutes to go 2.5 miles.  My time was 32:27, which included  transition time. 

After getting out of the water I had to haul my kayak to the grass across the path and then head out on the run.  I took off running, but then realized I forgot to take my life jacket off!  So I had to circle back, toss the life jacket back in the kayak and then take off on the run! 

The run was a 5K.  It was on the bike path that I run a lot!  It’s a pretty flat path so it made for a quick run!

image257I finished in 26:12 (8:27 min/mile) which is only 5 seconds over my 5K PR.  Not too shabby! 

The bike part made me a little nervous.  I really wish I’d have taken a picture of my yellow cruiser bike on the rack with all those legit looking bikes.  My transition time was only 32 seconds since all I really had to do was put my helmet on, get my bike off the rack and walk it out of transition (and panic for a moment!).  I hopped on my bike ready to tackle 10 miles.  I peddled my little heart out.  And so many times I wished I had more than 7 gears on my bike.  My legs were working double time and not getting me very far because again, the course was pretty flat!

image415I loved that the course was an out and back because I got to see all of my friends as I was riding so it was fun cheering for each other along the way (I also saw them canoeing while I was running and we were yelling back and forth to each other!).  I figured it would take me about 45 minutes to complete the cycling portion and I came in at 42:01.  Pretty close.  It would’ve been faster if I’d have had more gears. 

My overall time was 1:41:07, which was almost 20 minutes faster than I thought it would be.  Although I really had no goals or expectations for completion time as it was my first triathlon.  So I’m very happy with it. 

Luckily the weather was great that morning (a little humidity, but not nearly as hot or humid as it has been).  And the small event meant that I wasn’t fighting for space.  It also helped having some friends there, some experienced at triathlons, and some first timers like me.  We all loved the event and would definitely do it again next year.  And I think we’ve got some other people excited about it, too.

20160821_094000Hopefully I can get some more time in at the pool this winter so I can try a swimming triathlon next year because that was so fun!