Dreams: Redirected, Rediscovered and Realized

I just realized that I may never have shared with you why my blog is titled Redirected Dreams. So I thought I might explain how the name came to be and some things going on in my life lately.

Ten years ago I was starting college with plans to go into journalism. I wanted to move to New York or Chicago and work for a magazine.

Seven years ago I was going into my senior year of college. I was planning on graduating that spring with a degree in print journalism and head off to seminary the following fall. I wanted to teach and write and do all kinds of things to change the world. :)

Then I met Josh. Falling in love wasn't on my radar and getting married wasn't in my plan for at least 5 years.

But God had a different idea.

Three months after meeting Josh I found myself standing in front of the Christmas tree in his parents home while he knelt on one knee and asked me to be his wife and God started an amazing work in my heart.

When I married Josh I was very much not domestic. I could barely cook and was hardly what you would call creative.

In the past six years God has grown me so much. He has awoken in me a love of sewing and creating and opens doors for me to start my own business. I have developed such a love of cooking that my kitchen is my favorite room in my house. He truly redirected my dreams and have me ones bigger than I ever could have imagined.

And then He went above and beyond.

Three years ago I started blogging and the desire to write started to stir again. And this month I can, for the first time ever, say I am a published writer. He opened doors in unexpected ways and I finally got to see a life long dream realized.

All Glory to HIM!


My Weekly Five Link Up

1) We still have fleas. I have tried absolutely everything I can think of minus an exterminator, and if this things are still around on the tenth of August, that's exactly what I will be doing. 

2) The magazine I'm writing for finally came out this week. Very exciting. 

3) Josh has two days left of this month and we need 2.5 cars to be able to pay all of August bills. End of the month is always an interesting time in car sales. :)

4) My shop is picking up for the Holidays and I have a steady stream of orders coming in which is nice. Unfortunately they are all customs which is not as easy, but still it's nice to have steady business.

5) I went to a yard sale this weekend and got 5 gifts for three dollars. I am very proud of this! :)
Now it's your turn! Link up in this weeks Weekly Five and be entered to win a free coffee cozy!


Saturday: Sucesses and Fails.

This is one of those blog posts that has been rolling around in my head all day. It has taken on many forms and types of content. My original post was about the fun and relaxing things I did on Saturday. And then things went horrible wrong. I was tempted to go ahead with the happy go lucky post, but then I paused.

I was having a conversation earlier this week with some friends about the pitfall of blogging or really having any online presence It is so easy to present just a slice of life. The part that we choose for others to see. Because of that it is so very easy to project a the idea that we have it all together. That everything in our life is perfect and we have it all together.

I don't think most bloggers do this intentional I think it's a byproduct of choices we make. I personally chose to share the positive things in my life. I do this for two reasons.

1) No one wants to read a blog, follow some one on facebook, or subscribe to a twitter feed of a cranky person.

2) I have a tendency to be a negative person and blogging has helped me focus on the good things in my life. It has given me a place to celebrate the little things.

But some times the best thing you can do is be transparent. To be honest about the bad and ugly in life.

So here we go:

Today started out great. I spent the morning at home a lone with a a whole screen full of free book samples on my Nook and now I have a nice long list of books I can't wait to read. After bombing the house for fleas (third treatment). I then headed out to meet up with my mother-in-law and the girls. We went to a yard sale and I got 5 gifts for $3.00 dollars. AMAZING!!

I also got to see the magazine I'm writing for out around town. So much fun.

After hitting up some sales we went back to my mother in laws place and I did some working on projects. Finished up a doll and started working on a new style. I am in love with them.

Then we went home and in the ten minutes I spent downstairs on the computer reading about BlogHer12 Maddie emptied the entire jug of sweet tea on the floor. Wouldn't have been so bad, except I lost it. I completely and utterly lost my temper with her. And continued to do so as she attempted to "help" cook dinner. I wanted to shut myself up in the bathroom but I was worried about what else she might do.

Eventually I calmed down and realized that some day I will be sad. Some day she won't want to help. Some day I'll be wishing she was there to lay on the floor in the kitchen and play with the kitty. So I pulled our the flour and butter and let the girls make shortbread cookies. Something they could help with without making to much of a mess.

It wasn't perfect, but it was our day. A day in our adventure and I'm thankful for it.


Dolly Dreaming

I've been doing so much fun dolly dreaming/planning. While I was in MD after we lost our power I ordered a couple patterns. The one on the left is a vintage doll clothes pattern I'm hoping I can adjust to fit larger Goose Bear Dolls. I found the one on the right when I was looking for clothing patterns to adjust for the Alice style of doll. Didn't find any, but was excited by this pattern.

I am so very excited to try this pattern. It will be my first try at vintage patterns and I love how pretty yet simple the clothing is. I especially love the dress in the middle of the top row. Can't wait!

I bought half a yard of muslin to play with for this pattern and will be raiding my fabric stash for the rest. They look so sweet yet modern. I know my girls are going to love them playing with them.

Working on a new pattern of my own and this collection of fabrics should bring to life the final attempt. Then to assemble the actual pattern and get some testers. Any one want to try it out? 

Found some amazing fabric at Joann's so in love with it. I've been very impressed with them lately. I feel like they are getting more and more fabrics that look and feel like the higher quality designer fabrics. The yarn was purchsed in a bundle from Ilash Designs hands down one of my favorite places on line to buy hand spun/painted yarns. So beautiful and soft. Dreaming of these these sweet dollies are going to look like.

What are you all working on? Where is your favorite place to buy craft supplies?


Bush Gardens

Most of our anniversary trip to Williamsburg was spent at Bush Gardens. We planned to go do some of the Colonial Willamsburg stuff but never got around to it. Chances are we will be coming back regularly though so next time. :) Thought I would share a few pictures of our time (though I didn't take many.)

Me trying to win a Kindle Fire at the arcade. We actually have it five times and then it dropped. Was a fun experience though so worth the money.     

Josh at the breakfast place we stopped at on Sunday. One of I think 5 waffle/pancake places we saw.

Yummy candy purchased in downtown Williamsburg.

The cute Converse All Star shoes we bought. Sorta of Chuck Taylors meet ballet flats! 


Anniversary Food.

Josh and I love to eat. Probably a bit to much to be honest. We have a few favorite chain restaurants but what we really love is local places. On our recent trip to Williamsburg we staid at a nice hotel walking distance from down town Williamsburg. Our first night there we decided to walk to dinner despite the rain. We took the big umbrella and at first it wasn't that bad. As the rain picked up and the hour got later we got desperate though so we ducked into the closest place. One look at the menu was enough to send me running. Non of the food looked familiar and frankly the prices scared me. But Josh talked me into stay and we had some amazing food!!

Our yummy bread platter with cornbread, pretzel bread and herb bread paired with three dipping sauces. So yummy!

Duck breast with mushroom bread pudding and some other stuff. (Real descriptive I know!) I hate mushrooms and even I had to admit the the bread pudding was amazing. 

My pork shank ossobucco  with whipped potatoes and cucumbers. This stuff fell off the bone literally. The potatoes were so smooth and the gravy just a touch sweet. The cucumbers were... odd? I prefer my cucumbers ice cold with vinegar so slightly warm with gravy was iffy for me. But I would still go back and order this again. Someday. :)

Add a couple of white Russians and a bay leaf lemon drop and it was quite an experience.  Sitting in the beautiful restaurant while the rain poured down and we laughed and tried new things was an unexpected, unique way to kick off an anniversary trip.


My Weekly Five

Welcome to the first ever link up of My Weekly Five. Insert your link after the post to link up and be sure to check out every one else Weekly Five and leave some love!

1) After nearly falling apart last Staturday from overbooking and not being home enough the week before, I spent the vast majority of the start of the week at home. I didn't even leave the house till Thursday. It was nice. I got a lot of cleaning and laundry done and worked on finishing up July custom dolls and did a bunch of planning.

2) Wednesday night we discovered fleas on the cat and in one part of the house so I spent all Thursday cleaning the entire place top to bottom. While it put me behind schedule it nice to have the entire house so clean!

3) Friday I dropped the kids and the cat with my in-laws and Josh and I headed to Williamsburg to celebrate our 6th anniversary. It was an amazing time! It rained off and on all weekend but that lead to some of our best adventures including eating at a SUPER nice restaurant where we got to have Pork Ossobucco and Duck Breast with mushroom bread pudding. I was really nervous to try such fancy food and spend so much money but it was amazing food and an unforgettable experience. Worth every penny!

4) We spent a lot of time in Bushgardens including Sunday which was our actually anniversary. Even after I was unable to walk any more from a messed up food Josh pushed me around the park in a wheel chair. High light was probably when we were eating dinner at the Italian place in the park and realized that Come Fly With me was playing. The cool part was that was the final dance at our reception and it was roughly the time our reception had ended six years ago. So we dance/hobbled to the song in the middle of the park. :)

5) I've been doing a lot of dolly planning/dreaming and am slowly re-stocking yarns for ready to ship/custom dollies. Also working on a special project for The Clutch Guide stay tuned for more on that!

Now it's your turn. What are you top/bottom/favorite five things about this week? Share in your blog and then link up bellow.


My Take on the Library Tote

If you are on Pinterest at all and you sew you have probably seen  this tutorial for a cute library tote all over the place.  I pinned it, I have no idea how long ago, and keep coming back to look at it. Then  I visited my mom's library when we were up visiting after the huge storm that took our our power. After that I decided it was time to get a library card at our local library since it's just down the road. Perfect excuse to make a bag!  And, bonus, doing one pinterest pin a week is part of my Summer Bucket List! So here is my spin on the tote!

I used a vinyl fabric from Joann's for the main body. I bought it to make a zipper pouch for my Nook but since you have to buy a yard at a time of this kind of fabric I had plenty to make the bag as well. And now... BONUS they will match!

For the out side pocket and reinforcement strip I used some Daisy Cottage. I purchased half a yard of this from UberStitch last winter and had it sent to my sister. She made a nook cover out of it for me. (Again, with the matching.)

The handle and interior pocket was some sweet Riley Blake fabric my mom purchased for me off of Pick Your Plum back in May.

The whole thing came together in an hour or two with fabrics from my stash. My kind of Wednesday night project! Next time I make it I'll be sure to pin the pocket on so that it's centered and I probably won't do the vinyl exterior with the cotton handles. (Josh says it makes it look a little less polished). But for a distracted first attempt I am rather pleased.

Have and of you made the Noodlehead library tote? I would love to see it!!


Bucket List Update

It's been such a full and busy summer it feels like. And yet when I look at the girls bucket list hardly anything is checked off!! Some things just aren't going to happen. The zoo and Abi visiting my sister probably won't take place as schedules have changed and shrinky dinks are hard to find!. However, many of the things can still happen. Today I am printing out paper dolls and letting the girls work with my markers (GASP!) I got an ice cream maker from my parents and ordered a fun doll pattern to make dolls with the girls. This weekend the girls are staying three nights with Grandma and Grandpa. Then it's time to get to work staying home and having fun!

Girls Summer Bucket List
o   Zoo
o   Finger paints
o   Water fight
o   Make Popsicles
o   Dollar Movies
o   Splash Park
o   Make ice cream
o   Sidewalk chalk
o   Photo booth
o   Bean Bag Toss
o   Fireworks
o   Make Shirts
o   Library
o   Potato stamps
o   Farmers market
o   Art project
o   Make Cards
o   Pillow fort
o   Mini golf
o   Sprinkler
o   Visit Grandma and Papa
o   Visit Nana
o   Visit Aunt Tabi (Abi)
o   Visit Aunt Marge
o   Cereal Necklace
o   Sleep in tent
o   Play Dates
o   Twister
o   Make Pizza
o   Make Box Car
o   Download games on Nook
o   Make Cookies
o   Plant Something
o   Play Memory
o   Collage
o   Picnic
o   Mommy Mummy
o   Build-a-Bear
o   Fun Center
o   Shrinky Dinks
o   Go Swimming
o   Bubbles
o   Paper Dolls
o   Make a doll
o   Fairy Jar


Lemon Short Bread Sugar Scrub

Last week after getting home from my parents house I was feel the desperate need to be creative. 
Since the house was a mess and my to-do list was a mile long I opted for a very simple project and whipped up some sugar scrub. 

My original plan was to make lemonade sugar scrub but a few things got in the way. First off I bought organic raw sugar because I love the texture. However that mixed with the olive oil and it was impossible to get a white or yellow mixture. I ended up with brown.

I also really wanted to use the lemon rind but since my blender and food processor are broken I couldn't pulverize the whole rind and was only able to use the zest I got with my fine grater. The scent wasn't quite strong enough for my liking so I added almond and vanilla extract and ended up with...... Lemon Short Bread Sugar Scrub!

I finally tried it out today and loved it. Just the right about of scrub and left my skin smooth and not oily. Perfect!!

If any one is interested in trying here is the recipe such as it is:

"White" Sugar 
(I used organic raw sugar because I wanted a rough scrub)
Brown Sugar
(I used olive oil since I had it on hand)
Lemon Zest
Almond Extract
Vanilla Extract

1) Combine 1 cup of white sugar and 1/2 a cup of brown sugar and stir.
2)Mix in 1 1/2 cups oil.
3) Add the zest of one lemon.
4) Add one teaspoon each of the extracts.
5) Stir
6) Spoon into a jar or bottle with a tight lid.
(All measurements are rough estimates as I made a rather large batch and mixed by feel. The mixture will separate as it sits so you made need to shake or stir before use.)

I have been saving my Starbucks Mocha beverage bottles for a while now. I simply pealed of the labels and used a squirt or two of goo gone on each side and the glue residue wiped right off. I had some black spray paint on hand so I sprayed the the caps with that and it made for rather pretty presentation I think.

I gave one to my mother-in-law as a thank you for watching the cat while we were gone and I kept one for myself because, well because I never keep things I make for myself it seems. I have one bottle from this batch left so lets have a little fun. I'll give it away to the first local person who comments on this post and can meet me some time on Thursday in town to pick it up. :)


Let's Go to the Fair

Friday night we headed to the Salem County Fair. I loved the fair of as a kid and have fun memories as a child and teen going with friends and family. I was so excited to take my kids! The Salem fair is an open gate fair and has free parking which means getting in costs nothing. Granted you can spend a fortune once you get in, but we were able to it pretty cheap.

Personally I was most excited about the exhibits, but was rather dissapointed in those. Nothing like the one back home, but all in all we still had a good time. We bought twenty tickets and took the girls on their first ferris wheel  ride.

As you can see Maddie loved it!

Abi's favorite part was the free petting zoo. We got to see and touch all kinds of animals. We even got to see two baby goats that were less than 24 hours old. So sweet.

We gave each of the kids ten dollars to spend on food or junk or games. But is started raining to we skipped out early and hit up Sweet Frog for dinner. All in all a summer highlight.

What have some of your summer highlights been so far?


Learning Lessons

I overbooked today. Way over booked. I booked walking with a friend at 9:30, a birthday party with the kids at 11:00 and another one at 5:00.

I had insomnia last night a long with my daughter, apparently (they stay with my in laws on Friday nights). I canceled walking this morning because I didn't sleep last night and had hardly been home all week so my house was a mess and the birthday gifts were not yet made. We made it to the first party... two and a half hours late. Despite writing down 11:00 am on ALL THREE calendars I some how got it in my mind it was at 1:00 pm. Even if I had been right about that we still didn't show up until 1:30. We went to a friends house afterwards because I didn't want to drive all the way back to our house only to drive out to the second party. Twenty minutes at my friends house told me all I needed to know about the rest of the day. There was no way we were going to make it to the second party. The kids were tired, ready to be home, and in desperate need of real food.

So now I am sitting at home surrounded by a hugely messy house and dealing with the guilt of having to break plans three times in one day due to my poor planning. My intentions aren't good enough any more, not if I keep failing to follow through.

A week of meal planning with only one meal cooked.

A to do list with nothing checked off.

Plans made and broken.

Home one week from being away and feeling as exhausted and drained as when I left, if not more so.

It's time to sit down and figure out what matters. What really matters, and weed out all the rest. Time to stream line and cut out the junk so I am better equipped to deal with the real stuff.

I know it's not about turning my life upside down, but rather making small choices that will affect the bigger out come. My first reaction when I got home today was to pull out a Starbucks mocha drink out of the fridge to wake me up and grab a cupcake off the counter to hold me over till dinner. But then I thought about how silly I would feel writing this post about changes and doing the same old same old.

So instead I poured a tall glass of water, cute up a cucumber and I am planning on an early bed time to make up for last night's lack of sleep. It may not change the world. But maybe some small changes will change how I see and interact with the world.