Friday, December 16, 2011

Cloth Diapers...WHAT?

Okay...I NEVER thought I'd do it. You know...use CLOTH DIAPERS. Read all about my 'jump' in my guest post on The Cloth Diaper Whisperer blog. And enter today's Fluffy Friday giveaway while you're there.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

what did I choose?

Peace To All Religious Christmas Card

Create Christmas cards for the 2011 holiday season.

View the entire collection of cards.

Thanks, Shutterfly, for making my Christmas card crazies disappear this year :) Here's the design we went with this year. Have a great Thanksgiving next week, and enjoy the Season! xo

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sew To Swap, Blog Tour

It's my pleasure to announce that Sew To Swap: Quilting Projects to Exchange Online and by Mail, by Chrissie Grace, hit bookshelves last week.

What a joy it was to illustrate this project. It's my first published illustrative work, and it's exciting to see it available at Amazon and The book highlights, step-by-step, how to create a quilted piece and participate in a swap as part of the newest, modern quilting community. You're maybe familiar with Flickr, home of many fabulous quilting and misc. stitched swaps. You'll be tickled to see MANY familiar quilting bloggers featured in the book, such as Allison from Cluck Cluck Sew, Kerri from Lovely Little Handmades, and John from Quilt Dad. Published by F+W Media, you can find it for a great price here. Use code SEW2SWAP for $10 off the retail price until Nov. 30th.

Here is a bitty peek at some of the images in Sew To Swap...(photo courtesy of F+W Media)

(photo courtesy of F+W Media)

Here is a list of bloggers contributing to the book, along with their blog hop dates...

November 7 Lovely Little Handmades
November 8
Stitches & Scissors
November 9
Cluck Cluck Sew
November 10
My Three Sons
November 11
Twin Fibers
November 12
Stitchy Quilt Stuff
November 13
The Creative Juices of Ariel
November 14
Texas Freckles
November 15
Quilt Dad
November 16
Artsy-Craftsy Babe
November 17
Little Miss Shabby
November 18
A Cuppa and a Catch Up
November 19
A Quilt is Nice
November 20
A Little Sweetness
November 21
House of A La Mode
November 22
I’m Just a Guy Who Quilts
November 23
Little Bit Funky
November 27
In His Grace

Friday, November 11, 2011

Robot Craft Time

In my former life as an Art Teacher, I was so good about lesson planning...making sure I had all the supplies needed for a much-scheduled, and thought-out art lesson. These days, it's survival. Today, T and I squeezed in a craft while baby brother was asleep. Totally on the fly...
For the folks who want to try this at home, you'll need: -magazines (we used Car and Driver, simply because it's full of machines)
-aluminum foil
-scissors and tape
-misc. markers, optional
-items from the recycling bin (we used cardboard boxes and paper towel rolls)

Titus' robot is named KOOL. Child made that up all on his own. He's kool, if you ask me :)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Doodling with my buddy...

Titus turned FOUR two weeks ago, and he's currently THE biggest space nut I know. Here's what we doodled today....

Happy Thursday!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Giveaway Winners!

Congrats to Cheree, Jennifer, and Rachel!!! Winners of 25 FREE Shutterfly cards each! Look for an email from me with your Shutterfly codes. Enjoy!

Remember, if you're a blogger and would like 25 FREE cards from Shutterfly, go HERE to sign up before Nov. 11th.

*P.S....all former card design ideas are scrapped. Who is a chronic 'can't-make-up-her-mind-on-ANYTHING, including body wash scents and picking out her Christmas cards' silly girl? Me.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Christmas Cards - A Shutterfly Giveaway!

It's almost that time. You know. Christmas. Don't dread it, friends...embrace it this year :) The Eldridges love to send Christmas cards. I especially love sending a card that reflects on the JOY of the birth of our Savior. I used to hand stamp each little card, folks. Are you kiddin' me? Before I had kiddos, it was so fun to sit and design a Christmas card by hand. Now-a-days, the 'creative juices of ariel' sometimes have to be 'hired out'. That's why I love me some

We've been collecting 8x8" photo books since the birth of our first son, when I realized scrapbooking would not happen for awhile. I love how many designs there are to personalize our collections of photos. Shutterfly has taken it a step further and recently made their photo books so customizable, you can rearrange the text, layout, and embellishments of each page. LOVE that. Here's our latest book.

The Eldridges also love a good photo calendar. Where would I be without my Shutterfly photo calendar? Forgettin' birthdays, that's where. I know this because we decided not to get one last year, and I was a mess. Nieces and nephews were getting birthday gifts months late. Disastrous ;) I love what a great gift the calendar is in itself. We NEVER know what to give Papaw for Christmas...and I think we drew tears the year he opened his photo calendar. Perhaps we'll pick something from here for this year's gift?

Our kiddos get so excited when the Christmas cards start popping up in the mailbox. They love seeing the faces of the friends and family they recognize. What an awesome way to stay connected and teach your little folks the names and faces of those who love them. So, Shutterfly is making the Eldridge Christmas card again this year. I'm still deciding between these two designs...

So, you're not REALLY going to hand-make all your cards this year, right? ;) Want some free cards from Shutterfly? You're in luck. Shutterfly is giving 3 of my readers a set of 25 cards each. Just comment on this post for a chance to win one of the sets!

Are you a blogger? Want another chance at 25 free cards this holiday season? Register HERE.

I will choose 3 winners at random on Wednesday, Oct 26th.

**I did not receive monetary compensation for this blog post and am in no way affiliated with or it's company. As always, these are my genuine thoughts on the subject.

*Comments are Closed*

xo, Ariel

Friday, October 14, 2011

Oh, how He loves us...

enjoy a free printable on me today!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Christmas Red

I couldn't stand not doodling any longer ;) Back at the computer...this one is in the works for my pal, Kerri at Sew Deerly Loved. Perhaps to be a Christmas Red Riding Hood fabric in her shop....just a sneak peek for my sweet readers. XO

Monday, September 26, 2011


Whoooop! Where has the time gone? Probably into the I've been spending on Pinterest and IKEA recently :) Are you on Pinterest??? Bah! You should be! It's sah-weet!

Remember me rambling about taking a break from illustrating books to allow time for my hubs to work on his MBA and for me to make sure I hold down the fort with now TWO boys running around? Welp, every bit of my creativity is welling up inside, bustin' to do something I've decided to redecorate the downstairs. Crazy. Yup.

The dining room is gone. Well, not literally the room, just the fact that it is no longer for dining, but for playing. We broke down and created a playroom. Best idea ever. I just kept fighting it because I was holding onto that piece of me (pre-kiddos) that LOVED to entertain guests and set a mean Martha Stewart table for Thanksgiving. Who am I kidding? I'd rather my kids get their marble run off my coffee table. Who's with me?

Long story short (cause it's been since, what? AUGUST 2nd since I posted last) I've been pinning away all the ideas I can glean from Pinterest's wealth of creativity. I've fallen in love with curtains (all of them) from Urban Outfitters. And the last 3 lines of fabric by Anna Maria Horner (I might as well upholster the whole house in it. Oh, and chevrons...cause they're everywhere right now, right?

Somebody stop me.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

A Visit with Spoonflower...

I'm freshly home from vacation in Raleigh, NC. We visited some of our best buddies for a much-needed break from flat land Indiana. While we were gone, we dipped our toes into the ocean at TopSail Beach (I wouldn't get all the way was Shark Week on Discovery, y'all!), and breathed some FRESH mountain breeze in Blowing Rock, NC. I got a little suntan (little.) and a lot carsick (a. lot.)...

Here's the part that you'll be excited about too...I visited Spoonflower to see where all my fabric designs are printed. It was so fun to put a visual with the 'magical place that prints fabric'. I met Darci, who is one of Spoonflower's growing number of employees. I always look at my packing slip when I order fabric, and I know she's signed her name to many of them. Now I have a face and story to put with the signature.

(thanks, Darci!)

Spoonflower started with just a few employees, 2 tempermental printers, and one quilting cotton fabric option. They have since grown to about 30 employees, shipping their custom-printed fabrics all over the world. You can have your designs printed on organic cotton jersey knit or even a new silk to name just a few fabric options.

All that gorgeous fabric starts here...

...then is printed on one seriously large format printer, using eco-friendly inks

(they now have a room FULL of printers. Each printer has a name, face, and 'personality' favorite was Charlie.)

Once the fabric is printed, it's loaded onto a roll to run through a heat-setter.

Each order is then cut by hand...yardage, fat quarters, test can see why it takes more than a day or two to ship your fabric order...but these folks get to marvel at each and every fabric design as it comes through.

the waiting area...chairs covered with several of the designs that come through Spoonflower

Many designers will make goodies out of their fabric and share...

Love these coffee cozies...

Turns out, Spoonflower folks love them some coffee. :)

The whole place was filled with gorgeous designs from independent fabric designers. The employees were so down-to-earth and it's evident that they LOVE their jobs. I can tell it's a great place to work. Now, if I lived in North Carolina, I'd so bring in my resume ;) Happy fabric lovin', y'all!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

the DROID 'Charge'

Another great device is available from Verizon. And, the awesome Verizon folks allowed me to spend some time with the DROID 'Charge' for a very exciting event. *This review is based solely on my personal opinion after spending a week using the device. I did not accept anything in exchange for the review and these are my genuine thoughts on the subject...

Last weekend, my home church sponsored an awesome date night experience called, the Amazing Race. It was just evening of running around with my husband, competing against 150 other couples, like chickens with our heads cut off -- all in the name of LOVE ;)

When I registered for the event, I knew for a fact that my husband and I are B-A-D with directions. Our GPS device in the car is almost worse than not having a map. SO, when I had the chance to review a DROID Charge, it was a no-brainer. The device made it easy for us to Google locations as part of the Amazing Race clues, and also phone folks for help. Not to mention, there were some crazy pictures and tweets flying around from other couples as they accomplished tasks such as, diving to the bottom of a pool for dive sticks (in their street clothes), hauling a dummy through a smoke-filled trailor at the fire station, and paddling boats at lightning speed along the Indy canal. We discovered several things:

a. folks get crazy when there's a finish line involved

b. we're lost without Verizon Navigation

c. hanging out with your spouse, on adventure is flippin' sweet fun

The evening was exhausting, and we used up every last second of battery life on that DROID. But we had an amazing time :) Here are a few things I discovered about the DROID 'Charge'...

  • Pro's: The Droid Charge is a Samsung device, and similar to the Fascinate that I reviewed earlier in the year, it's super user-friendly. The Android apps are every bit as awesome and updated as when I reviewed last. My new favorite is HootSuite, so I can say the same thing on Facebook as Twitter...This really came in handy as we updated our status throughout the 'race'. I also loved the size of this device, and would compare it to an iPhone, but more rounded edges. It slipped easily in several of my jeans pockets, which is ESSENTIAL to how I like to roll with my cell phone :) No dragging around an extra purse just for my phone, y'all. I like me some low-maintenence with a baby on the go. The 'Charge' is also a 4G phone rather than the 3G Fascinate, meaning lighting fast speed in 4G areas.

  • Con's: Battery life was lacking. It didn't hold up as well as the Fascinate, in comparison. Keep in mind that I had GPS tracking enabled most of the Amazing Race, which drains battery life significantly. It lasts a good full day with normal use (twitter, facebook, music streaming, etc.) I wasn't as impressed by the camera quality as the Fascinate. While still good 'phone quality', you just can't beat the lens clarity of the Samsung Fascinate. I wouldn't use this phone for heavy outdoor use, like camping or hiking, where you would be away from a charge source.

If you're interested in a new Verizon device, check out their website for links to simulate use of that device. Or just go play with them in the store. It's a great way to give it a 'test run' before you commit.

And, for folks who live in the Indiapolis area, and are interested in participating in the next crazy awesome couples event, visit for more info.

'Cause where else can you get the opportunity to dive to the bottom of a pool, crawl through a smokey house, dip into a pot of cash, get a tattoo, shoot baskets with toilet paper rolls, eat sushi blindfolded, build a robot, ride a mechanical bull, and renew your wedding vows...all on date night???

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Fleece Diaper Soakers

Let me start by saying that I love cloth-diapering folks. I wanted to do it so badly with my boys, but couldn't get my hubs to be okay with the thought of 'poop in the washer'. Geeps. ;)

So I was super excited for my friend, Lindsey, who just had her second baby, when she decided she wanted to give cloth-diapering a go. She did her research and decided on un-bleached pre-folds with Snappis and soakers. I thought, perfect....I definitely want to buy her some wool interlock soakers for her shower. THEN, I did my shopping. Whoa. I found out that I can't afford wool interlock soakers, nor can I afford or FIND wool interlock yardage to make them myself. Sooooooo, here's my story of a comprimise, that hopefully will work wonderfully for my sweet friend's new baby Lilly.

My (other) friend, Lynsey, is a super-pro on cloth diapering, so I sought out her advice. She directed me to this pattern and advised me to try fleece instead. While not as natural as wool, fleece is also breathable and can be thrown in the dryer (perfect for folks who can't afford to have Nana 'accidentally throw their $40 wool soaker in the dryer on high' and end up with an extremely expensive, tiny wool scrubbie).

They were VERY fun to make. The pattern is spot-on. Just be advised that you have to stretch the waist and leg bands as you sew them on. I had some fun making appliques for the bum this case, apples, which had me humming, " bottom jeans, boots with the fur..." I'm sure her daddy would not appreciate my humor here. :)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Plum Bo Peep

Welp, my hubbers has officially started his MBA studies, and for the time being, I've turned down an illustration job on a new crafting book. Reaaaalllly tough decision, but family-first seems like the wiser choice right now. Friends keep giving me great advice to enjoy my babies while they're small. So, you'll find me kissin' chubba cheeks this summer and tripping to the pool and library. It also gives me a wee bit more time to SEW and illustrate for FUN....

...I mentioned the cheeks, right?

Saturday, June 11, 2011

NEW! Pocketful of Pinwheels Bookplates

These have been in the works for long, that I finally said to myself 'just do this!'

Our boys LOVE reading and love books. Reading to your child is one of the most precious gifts you can give them. I'm in the process of adding new bookplate designs to the shop, and I hope you'll enjoy them! These are available in PDF format. Each file you purchase contains a sheet that fits 6 bookplates to a page. Use adhesive paper, or simply glue them into your book's cover with a glue stick or other acid-free glue. Use them over and over to print as many as you like! These would also make great gift enclosures.

What would you like to see next?

Monday, June 6, 2011

'Sew To Swap' by Chrissie Grace

YAY! yay, yay, yay!

There is finally a cover design for the book that I just finished illustrating. Sew To Swap by Chrissie Grace is set to hit stores and quilt shops in October. It's also available for pre-order here.

Listen, folks...even if I hadn't been illustrator for this book, I'd STILL want you to have it. Some of my very favorite quilters have contributed to the projects laid out in the book. If you've ever been part of an online quilting/sewing swap or even swapped in your quilt guild, OR never have done either and are curious about it, check this book out. I've met so many online friends with the same love for fabric through swaps. The book is very modern and full of gorgeous ideas. Thank you, Chrissie, for suggesting me to work on this!

Wooooot! (can you hint my excitement??)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

'Water for Elephants Quilt'

I've been sitting on these pictures for a couple weeks, hoping I would get a chance to edit them. Alas, here they are...un-edited :)

When I saw this quilt pattern from Cluck. Cluck. Sew., I knew it was perfect for my friend, Julia's modern baby boy nursery. She has great taste and is decorating in a mod baby transportation theme.

Don't look too closely. It was my first straight line quilting attempt. Boo of a job getting even spacing and straight lines. I'm going to go ahead and say that I heart free-motion quilting far better. Who knew? This was also my very first quilt pattern to follow. I highly recommend this one. Allison is always spot-on when she shares her quilting techniques. I can't wait to try another one of her patterns. MUST finish quilting the two I have in-progress first ;) My poor hubby has been waiting forever for his quilt to be finished. If you listen closely, you can hear him sniffling behind this one as he holds it up for the picture ;)

Monday, May 9, 2011

Back in the Saddle of Sewing

Whoosh! Happy Late Momma's Day, friends. Did you do something for yourself this weekend? My sewing machine and I met again like we never parted....and whipped up a quilt top for a friend's baby shower. (DON'T LOOK, JULIA!) ;)
full view later...must.keep.sewing.