Thursday, October 30, 2014

DIY Alphabet Fridge Magnets & Updated Tutorial

I visit Pinterest every day - I'm not sure if that should be a declaration or confession. 

Quite often I'll come across projects that look fun and doable, but I just don't have the time, so I'll pin them and hope to one day get around to them. Today's Pinterest creation was inspired by a set of magnetic alphabet letters available on Etsy. But for $60, I decided I could figure it out on my own. (Scroll down for a full step by step tutorial.)

And so....

I printed and cut out a large bold font,
Ariel Black Bold 300 Font

stacked leftover scraps from Ryder's quilt with 2 layers of batting, traced the letter template, and inserted a magnet under one layer of the cotton, and started sewing. 


Maybe one day I'll open up shop on Etsy, but for now I'll just enjoy the spontaneity of such little DIY projects.  

If any of you are interested in a more detailed tutorial, leave me a comment of send me an e-mail. It really was very simple. And now I look forward to practicing letters with my little scholar in the morning. <3


*As mentioned above, this project really is very simple. A little time consuming cutting letters out for the first time, but once you get started, they basically make themselves. So just listen to an audiobook (like I did) or throw on a movie and you'll be done in no time!

  • scrap fabric
  • cotton batting
  • Sharpie or washable fabric marker
  • small magnets
  • alphabet tracers (can be printed from Word)

1. Print an alphabet template for your letters. I recommend 'Arial Black' in BOLD, font size 300 on Word.  To save on ink, I just printed the letters as an outline and not solid black. Print on regular paper (if you're like me) or card stock, if you want to make it easier for yourself and cut out each letter. 

2. Cut your fabric into 54 4-inch squares. Do the same with your cotton batting - 54 4-inch pieces. 

3. Sandwich 2 pieces of cotton batting in between 2 pieces of fabric. Make sure the good sides of the fabric are facing out. You should have 27 little piles when you've finished. 

4. Trace each letter backwards onto the centre of one of your fabric sandwiches. 
(I used a sharpie because it was nice and bold to see while sewing. This will be the back of your letter, and since that side will be out of sight, against the fridge, I wasn't worried about the permanence. If you aren't planning to add magnets, or you prefer a more polished look, a washable fabric marker is great too - mine was just too faded and I didn't want to make a trip out to the store.)

5. Once the letter is traced, stick a pin through all four layers to keep them together. Then take one little magnet and position it under the first layer of fabric but on top of the battering, so that when you start sewing, it falls within the outline of the letter. 
(I picked up this little package of magnets at Walmart, in the craft aisle for $5.97. If you want to make the sewing easier on yourself, you can just skip this step and glue a magnet on the back of your letter once they're finished, or leave the magnet off entirely if  your fridge real estate is at a premium and you just want the letters as toys. :)

 6. Sew around the edge of each letter, right on top of the letter you have traced. Make sure that the magnet stays within the seams of the letter. If the letter has holes in the center (like B or D) sew around the inner tracing as well before cutting anything.

7. Once you've finished sewing around the whole letter (or you can wait and do all the cutting at once at the end) using scissors, cut about 1/8" inch around the outside seams of the letters. Do the same inside the letters with holes, being careful not to cut through the seam. 

8. Now go hang your letters on the fridge, stand back, and admire your handiwork!

If you have any questions before getting started yourself, feel free to leave a comment under this blog post or send me an e-mail at  If I can, I'm always happy to help. If you're interested in a set of letters, but don't have a sewing machine or the time to make them yourself, shoot me an e-mail too, and we can try to work something out - I have TONS of scrap fabric just hanging around or I could complete a custom order if you're looking for particular letters or fabric. :)

Here's another set that I made for a friend...


Happy Crafting!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

For The Love Of Reading

I've always loved reading . As I kid, it wasn't unusual to find me on my bike with a grocery bag full of library books (be they Nancy Drew, Louis L'amour, or Tintin comic books) swinging from my handlebars. 

Not a lot has changed. I still love spending time at the library. And what better way to introduce that love of books to Ryder than at children's story time, which just happened to be today. :)

Today we chose a few stories featuring our favourite curious monkey,
we listened attentively while the sweet librarian read a few stories,
and we made a little paper plate ghost with the other children. 

All in all, a successful morning out! 

It didn't hurt that Ryder and I shared a sweet snack (recommended by a special auntie) on our way home.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Be All There

Before leaving our last duty station, a friend and fellow military spouse shared a piece of advice she had received over the years - 


It reminded me of something I came across while in college. As an avid journal myself, I picked up a compilation of the Journals of Jim Elliot to read and be inspired. Much of what he wrote was during his college days and one quotation stuck with me, so much so that I wrote it in the margin of the Bible I was using at the time. 


And that's my goal in this crazy military life we live. We are loving our home, our church, and our community.  

What 'being all there' looked like for us tonight, was enjoying the evening sunset on our run, being tuned in enough to catch a glimpse of a long-eared cotton-tailed rabbit as it cut across the road in front of us, stopping to admire perhaps the largest beetle I have ever seen, and seeing the beauty in our prickly desert brush. 

 How are you making the most of your present situation?

Monday, October 27, 2014

Monday - Catch Up Day

Since becoming a mom, it seems that Mondays are mainly taken up with activities around the house, catching up from our weekends.  Not that we have such crazy weekends, but I've really begun making an effort - especially with Braden's heavy work schedule - to let things go when he's home so that we can be enjoying time together as a family and not be burdened with extra tasks.

But now that it's Monday, I've gone for a run, have my second load of laundry going, a whole pumpkin baking in the oven (it's never too early to start making baby food, right?), and my most recent quilt finished, washed, and ready to go!

Feeling productive!
And a happy Monday to you too. :)

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Let's Go Fly A Kite....

It's been a fun and adventurous weekend for the Appersons! So thankful for a relaxing few days with lots of family time. 

I was able to enjoy a few kitchen 'dates' with my Braden - making Lemon Blueberry Pancakes for breakfast on Saturday before Ryder got up and then Lemon Almond Bread this morning. (I had a bag of lemons to use up :) I even got out of the shower to find the dishwasher running and kitchen sparkling. <3  
Ryder's first Mickey Mouse pancake. 
These two found crazy get-ups in the morning and Ryder has had a ball putting the  hats on and off.
Perhaps the most fun that Ryder and Daddy had was putting together a new airplane kite (thanks Costco!) and flying it on our blustery Saturday.
Some assembly required.
Definitely a two person job. :)
Ryder could have stayed outside all day and been entertained by the dips and dives his kite took.  The plane is now hanging from the ceiling in his room and still inducing that childish amazement. 
First on Daddy's shoulders.
Then, 'Ryder do it'
 We were blessed and challenged by the message from Matthew 12 at church this morning. A tree is known by its fruit - the words we speak expose the condition of our heart. We are accountable for every careless word spoken, no matter our circumstances.  Food for thought...

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Friday, October 24, 2014

IT'S A........


And we couldn't be happier!  Secretly, I was hoping for another little man to be best buds with big brother.
Baby Little Dipper looks great. He's active and we caught him sucking on his fingers. All the measurements they took looked good and we are so thankful for this tiny little life. God has surely blessed us!
Ryder was eager to hold onto the balloon. 
Braden arrived home from work eager to hear the news for himself. Ryder shared in the moment with high pitched squeaks every time a balloon was within reach.

Of course, he didn't mind sampling the blue sprinkle-filled chocolate covered Oreos either. :)

So, bring on more Tonka trucks and airplanes!

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one's youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.  (Psalm 127:3-5 ESV) 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Children's Music Theology

Good morning!

I'm sitting here in my semi-quite house. Ryder is eating his breakfast and I have mine, with the addition of a steaming cup of coffee.  The heat has just come on, but I can see that the sun's rays shining across our table are deceptively warm - it's a chilly morning out there.

As peaceful and calm as this morning sounds, yesterday was it's exact opposite. After packing Braden off to work with coffee, a smoothie, and lunch at around 5am, sleeping for another hour, and then trying to accomplish an inhuman amount (run, shower, breakfasts, cleanup, laundry, dinner prep, etc.) before heading out the door for MOPS at 9:45, I set us up for a crazy day.

In the afternoon I was even able to read through Acts 23 and work on my church small group questions, but it wasn't until I was making dinner in the evening and turned on some children's music for Ryder that I was able to reevaluate and get my focus where it needed to be.

Children's Music Theology:

1. Do Not be Overcome by Evil, but Overcome Evil with Good. Romans 12:21

2. You are the Light of the World. Let Your Light so Shine Before Men that they may see your Good Works and Glorify Your Father in Heaven. Matthew 5:14,16

3. Keep Your Tongue From Evil and Your Lips from Speaking Lies. Proverbs 34:13

4. I Can Do All Things Through Christ Who Strengthens Me. Philippians 4:13

5. Trust in the Lord with All Your Heart and Lean Not on Your Own Understanding. In all Your Ways, Acknowledge Him, and He will Direct Your Paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

Sometimes it's hearing the Word in its simplest form that has the most effect.
Today I'm determining to be meditating on it from the get go.

Have a great one!

PS - Today, Lord willing, we find out our big baby news! Stay tuned tomorrow....

And because I can't post without a picture, here's one from a few weeks back of Ryder playing with one of his beloved Tonkas. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Immigration Update

Today held another successful trip to Reno, this time to check in with the immigration office and have my fingerprints and photo taken. 

Ryder was a ham, winning the hearts of the big burly security officers and other employees with his toothy smile and silly antics.  

As a result of this visit, my green card will be renewed for another 10 years and hopefully in that time, I'll be able to become a US citizen. :)
 Of course, no trip out of my small town is complete without a stop by Starbucks!

And then Costco, where Ryder had a little pony ride.  These pictures are especially for the Mitton cousins. <3

Lately, Ryder has been eager to chatter and pick up new words. At home he's got 'neigh' and 'moo' down pretty well.  He'll also say 'soft' when he pets Dixie or wears his sherpa lined hoodie. On our drive, we talked about everything we saw (mainly sagebrush and dirt - lol) and Ryder learned 'tsoo tsoo' while we passed a train. 

At Target, Ryder was fascinated by the red spheres sitting outside and had to touch each one of them. This time, saying 'ball' perfectly. 

 On our way back home, we happened to spot a herd of wild horses that had come down from the mountains to drink from the Truckee River. 'Neigh...'
There are a few barely perceptible towards the bottom right of that little hill in the centre. 
 And before long, this little guy was tired from his day in the city and we turned back for home to make dinner and see Daddy.
Speaking of dinner... 
Homemade (crust, filling, and meringue) lemon pie was on the menu for dessert. Ryder gave his approval after sampling the beaters.

And that's a wrap. 
G'night friends!