Saturday, October 15, 2016

Oh, Internet... {91}

We're going to the Maryland Renaissance Festival tomorrow- which gives me just a few more hours to finish our costumes!  (Talk about last-minute...)  Between all the October activities around here this week, I found these awesome things on the internet:

Check out this (hilarious) DIY Halloween-themed doormat at Jojotastic!

For a costume or even just for everyday office wear: check out this easy victory rolls tutorial at A Beautiful Mess!

The Sew and Tell Project shared a look at a pattern for DIY wings- my little one needs wings for her Halloween costume this year, but I cheated and bought some cheap ones.  Next year I should snag this pattern!

How do you put big love into small things?  (See what Erin at Humble Handmaid has to say!)

Angie at Yellow Pelican shares 11 things she loves about NFP (and we Geeks agree!)

Julie at These Walls recently discovered her parish's adult faith formation class and now I want our parish to start one, too!  I really enjoyed sponsoring Mr Geek in RCIA because the classes were so engaging!

So what all did you find on your internet this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Wordless Wednesday: Pumpkin Carving

For the first time as a little family, we carved a jack-o-lantern this weekend!

And by "we", I mean me!  I'm actually super proud of myself because the carving bits were always my dad's job growing up, so this was legitimately my first time doing this.  But it was easy, because the company that makes those little carving knives now also makes tiny, AA-battery-powered jigsaws, and that sucker did most of the work for me.

But enough talking- take a look at the photos!

Are y'all carving pumpkins this year?  What designs will you be using?

Much love,
The Geeks

Monday, October 10, 2016

Family Costume Inspiration Round-Up

I'm sure you can tell by now that Hallowe'en is my all-time-favorite holiday.  I'm such a big kid at heart, and I've always loved assembling creative costumes for myself, so having two other people to dress up is like a dream come true!  (No joke, I actually had a dream once, before I was pregnant- or at least, before I knew I was pregnant- that I was up late finishing family Winnie the Pooh costumes...I might have a problem.)

My parents never joined in on the costume fun when I was little, but because I enjoy dressing up so much myself, I see no reason to let my little one have all the fun!  You've seen our past costumes- but what about some other inspiration for group costumes?

via The Sew & Tell Project
The Sew & Tell Project is run by two amazingly talented women who have made all sorts of beautiful outfits.  Check out this post to see how Eleri put together these coordinating Little House on the Prairie costumes!

via The Sew and Tell Project
And here are Emily's incredibly detailed and beautiful Zorro costumes.  You can check out more sewing inspiration from the Sew and Tell Project on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest!

via Love Our Crazy Life
Becca from Love Our Crazy Life has an adorable and super simple DIY father-and-son Wreck-It Ralph costume tutorial!  (Check her out on Instagram too!)

via Make it and Love it
Make It and Love It always does incredible family costumes every year- her children are adorable and her talent is peerless.  My personal favorite was the Tangled crew, mostly because that little chameleon is just about the cutest thing I've ever seen :)  (Also her Pinterest is seriously drool-worthy.)

And then of course there are All Saints Day costumes!  (Two occasions to wear costumes, back-to-back?  Awesome!)

Catholic Sistas has an amazing post of All Saints Day ideas- not just costumes!

And of course Kendra at Catholic All Year is the queen of Hallowe'en-turned-All-Saints costumes, because she's awesome.

So, are you inspired?  What will you and your family be wearing in just a few weeks?

Much love,
The Geeks

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Oh, Internet... {90}

Ah, October.  My favorite month of the year!  And it opened with some awesome stuff on the internet, like this:

My new favorite sewing blog, the Sew and Tell Project, shared a tutorial for a DIY candy bag for Halloween- it's super simple and super adorable!

The Modcloth Blog shared some super awesome outfits inspired by classic literature and I want all of them!

Speaking of outfits- Lauren at Fizz and Frosting is always one fashionable mamma (and if you hurry quick, you can enter her Sephora gift card giveaway!)

You know who else is one chic mommy?  Anna at In Honor of Design, who I thought just recently had a baby but obviously I'm mistaken because there's no way she looks that good...

Okay so over on Weddingbee, Miss Wishbone and her beau are getting married on Tax Day, so their save-the-dates were designed to look like W2's!  Go check it out!

Another insanely creative DIY that also happens to be sappy and romantic is this beautiful DIY wall art over on Bean in Love.

Better than Eden has a beautiful reflection on marriage- "Their marriage exists until someone has "changed," ours desperately hopes that we will be."  Go read it.  It's powerful.

And Haley at Carrots for Michaelmas is the queen of weekly roundups- she's got some wonderful stuff in her "This Week's Miscellany" post!

What awesome stuff happened on your internet this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Crafting Adventures: 101 Dalmatians

I think last year's 101 Dalmatians costumes were my favorite so far.  We're getting ready to go to the Maryland Renaissance Festival once again, and the costumes I'm putting together for that are even better- so stay tuned!  But for now, here's the tutorial I promised you!

To make the puppy costume, you need: 

-a white hoodie in your little girl's size
-white tights in your little girl's size
-an adult sized white short sleeved tshirt (I got a simple v-neck ladies t-shirt with cap sleeves in size XL)
-1" wide elastic
-filling, used for making pillows (or you could just use cotton balls)
-1/4 yard pink fabric
-pale blue ribbon
-black fabric paint pen(s) [I used different sizes and different tips to vary the size of the spots)
-sewing supplies

1.  First, use a seam ripper and scissors to take apart the t-shirt- it's going to be the ears, the tail, and the skirt for this costume.  Remove the sleeves with the seam ripper.  Cut a straight line to remove the bottom of the t-shirt so that the height is the length you want the skirt to be + 1 1/2".  Don't discard the rest of the t-shirt quite yet!

2.  When I removed the cap sleeves from my t-shirt, and then undid the seam holding it as a cylindrical sleeve-shape, I was left with these two crescent-moon-shaped pieces of white.  If you use regular short sleeves, you might not get this half-moons, but that's not to say they won't work as puppy ears. Experiment with how you want the ears to eventually look by curling them and placing them on the hood of the sweatshirt; once you're satisfied with your ear shapes, use the white pieces as a guide to cut pink pieces (one for each ear).

Important note:  Now, the pink fabric I chose to use was from my scrap pile- it was the leftovers from this Valentine's Day project I had done a few months before.  It's a pale pink with white hearts, and I thought the hearts would be pretty adorable, but I didn't want them to be quite so prevalent- more subtle.  So I decided to use the fabric inside out so that the hearts would peek through if you're looking closely, but from a distance it's a solid pink.  I'm explaining this to you so that you understand that the printed side of my fabric became the "wrong" side for the purposes of this project, and the underside of the fabric became the "right" side.  So don't get confused by my use of the terms "right" and "wrong" in the next step!

3.  Pin the white and pink pieces with right sides together and sew all the way around, but leave a little over an inch undone- I left the gap at one of the corners.  Turn the ears right-side-out and stitch closed the gap you left.

4.  (Aaaaaand that's where I stopped taking pictures.  Oops.)  You'll want to curl your ears into C shapes and pin them on either side of the hood of the sweatshirt- it helps to get your model to wear the hoodie and then try a few different positions, gently pinning the ears in place and then removing the hoodie again and letting her run off to play.  I folded down about a 1/2" lip to stitch the ears to the hood- you can use a fancy decorative stitch since you're technically "top stitching", but as it'll be technically the inside of the ear, you can just use a zig-zag stitch and call it a day.  (The zig-zag is sturdier than a straight stitch.)  What your left with is floppy adorable-ness :)

5.  Remember how I said don't ditch the last piece of t-shirt?  Use what's left to cut off two vaguely tail-shaped pieces with a pointy end.  I actually ended up lining up my cut so that one side rested against the folded edge of the shirt, so that the two pieces are attached at one end.  If you use the fold, make sure it's not on the edge where the tail will meet the body- you want that edge open.  Cut out your tail piece(s), and sew up all the sides except the base (use a zig-zag stitch for that aforementioned sturdiness), and turn it right-side-out.

6. Use your pillow filling (or cotton balls!) to stuff that little tail until it's an adorable stubby little thing, and pin the open end closed.  Take a look at the bottom of your sweatshirt- there's probably a ribbed band that goes around the bottom.  Find the center of the back of your sweatshirt and snip that band in half (vertically) at that mid point.  Slide the pinned base of your tail into the slit you now have in the band, and use a zig-zag stitch to sandwich it in there.

7.  The blue ribbon is going to be the collar.  Wrap it around the neck of the sweatshirt and stitch it in place- I left the ends long so they could be tied in a bow (I had originally hoped to do a tag but ran out of time) but you could also stop at the edges of the hood and leave it open at the base of the neck.

8.  All that's left is to turn the rectangle you cut from the t-shirt into a skirt with an elastic waist using that tutorial from Make It and Love It that I always use.  Super simple!  All that's left is to use your fabric paint pens to place spots on the hoodie, skirt, and tights.  Use as many or as few spots as you'd like, and use varying sizes- I even placed a hidden Mickey in there, just because!  Fortunately, we have our very own Penny to use as a reference for spot placement.  And of course, on the big day, be sure to use face paint to give your puppy a little black nose!

That's it!  Super simple!

Cruella de Vil has been my favorite costume ever, but all of it was store bought.  I wore a little black dress, black tights, and red pumps that I already owned.  I found the coat, wig, gloves, and cigarette holder on Amazon; combined, they were much more than I would spend on a one-time costume, so I used my credit card reward points to pay for them.  I had intended to try to whip up a faux fur coat but I figured there's no way I could do it justice.  Remember Cruella needs a pale face, bright red lips, and blue eye shadow!

Jasper was also entirely store-bought, but these are all just regular clothing pieces Mr Geek can wear whenever.  We got the cargo pants for the Treebeard costume and he already had this brown corduroy blazer.  I found the newsboy cap at Target and the sweater at Macy's (and it just looks sooooo good on him, doesn't it?)

So costumes so far ;)  But this year's Ren Faire costumes are going to be pretty awesome, too, so stay tuned!

What's your favorite family costume from Hallowe'ens past?

Much love,
The Geeks

Monday, October 3, 2016



It's October!  It's time for pumpkins and sweaters and homemade costumes!!!!

Looking for ideas?  Here's a reminder of what our little family has worn in the past:

Here are tutorials for Han, Leia, and a little ewok if Star Wars is your thing.

Is Lord of the Rings more your style?  Try this simple Treebeard and his little hobbit friends!

Are you a total Disnerd like us?  This 101 Dalmations family costume was super easy, as Cruella and Jasper are entirely store-bought.  Stay tuned for a tutorial for the little puppy!!

Are you as excited about Hallowe'en as I am?  What will your family be wearing this year?

Much love,
The Geeks

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Oh, Internet {89}

Uuuuuum I didn't post all week >.<  But I have a good excuse!  I promise!  And around about, oh, mid-October you'll be able to see what I've been working so diligently on :)  (Psst, I finally figured out Instagram Stories, so if you follow me there, you may have seen a sneak peek of what's going on at Casa Geek- and I'll be sharing more as I go!)

But thankfully other people blogged this week, so you can read them :)

Magic Kingdom celebrates its 45th anniversary this weekend!  How exciting!

So like I said, I can barely manage to blog once a week, but Julie at These Walls is signing up to post every day in October- that's definitely brave!

As our society pushes us to teach children how to read (and do math and use computers) earlier and earlier, are we potentially robbing them of the joys of reading in exchange for the hard skills?  There are a lot of great points made over here at Sew Many Wild Things.

Catholic Mom has a great list of 13 Ways a Busy Mom can Pray the Rosary.

Speaking of moms- If You Bring a Mom a Muffin is a lovely (and non-pushy) reminder of ways you can help a mom with a new baby at home.

Sterling Jaquith attended the St. Catherine of Sienna Set the World Ablaze Conference for Women, where she heard Meg Hunter-Kilmer talk about evangelization- and how we should talk about Christ the way we used to talk about that cute boy with a guitar...passionately and non-stop!

Jenny at The Littlest Way has something to say about the critics of St Theresa of Calcutta- exactly how can one hope to achieve sainthood in our modern culture if even Mother Theresa isn't good enough?

What awesome things happened on your internet this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Oh, Internet... {88}

Urgh.  Going back to work after vacation sucks.  I only worked two days this week- I specifically scheduled an extra day off after we got back in town to grocery shop and just generally recover from our trip- but those two days felt like twenty.

The highlight of this back-to-the-grind week?  These awesome things on the internet!

On the list of things I "need" from ThinkGeek we can now add this LED twinkling stars skirt.

Oh, Joy! has added OMG and YAY to the collection of letter vases found at Target (previously you could buy OK in stores, I think they're still available online).  I think I'm going to get the YAY ones to use for birthdays and such :)

Apparently I need to up my game for "wacky hair day" at school- here are some ideas on Make It and Love It!

Better than Eden has a genius list of things people need to hurry up and invent.

Bean In Love shows that the only thing better than sewing for one little girl is sewing for twin little girls :)

Shayla at Northern Exposure is celebrating four years of marriage to her lovely husband- go congratulate them!

There is a beautiful piece about moments of grace over on Erring on the Side of Love that had me nodding my head the whole time.

I really needed this reminder from Haley that although it seems like certain actions or habits are required in order to be a holy woman, it turns out you can be good and holy without them.

Along the same lines- ever notice how it's seemingly cool nowadays to bash your kids, your husband, motherhood itself?  Kristina at Calidrab talks about how maybe it's a good idea to take a break from that thinking every now and then.

There is a heartbreaking reflection this week over on Elizabeth Ministry that is exactly what I needed to read (and maybe I'll read it a few more times to make sure it sticks).

What all have you been reading this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Crafting Adventures: The Four Quarters Skirt

So, this little outfit a certain someone wanted to wear for a photo shoot when we first moved in- I made the skirt!

It's super simple and mostly based on the same tutorial I used to make this skirt (and also this one now that I mention it...) only instead of just upcycling an old piece of my own clothing, this one is from scratch.

I am obsessed with fat quarters- every time I'm at the fabric store, regardless of what I'm looking for, I always manage to find a fat quarter or two in my cart (kind of like how I always manage to find cute toddler clothes in my cart when I go to Target for groceries...).    I'm always finding new projects to use up my stash, and this time I decided to turn some of it into an adorable skirt.

This is a fully lined skirt with an elastic waistband.  I call it the "four quarters" skirt because it uses 4 fat quarters- two of the same fabric for the outside, and two of the same fabric for the lining.  As a typical fat quarter measures at about 18" x 22", you need two in order to fit a larger toddler (or smaller big kid).  If you're looking to make one for a tiny little thing, you could get away with using one fat quarter for the outside and one for the lining.


  • 2 fat quarters of outer fabric
  • 2 fat quarters of lining fabric
  • 1" wide elastic
  • sewing supplies

1. So like I said, your fat quarter is probably 22" on the long side, which is probably about the circumference of your toddler's waist (give or take an inch or two).  Meaning if you sew two of them together, you'll have about double your toddler's waist- which gives you a nice full skirt.  If you've got a skinny little girl, you can cut off an inch or two; if your little one's waist is right at 22" or even a tad larger, it's okay- the skirt just won't be quite so full.

You might not need to cut the short side either, but I got rid of about an inch.  Every fat quarter needs to be cut so that the short sides are the length you want the final skirt to be, plus 1/4" seam allowance for the bottom, plus 1 1/2" for the casing for the elastic at the top (so your final length plus 1 3/4").  If you want a long skirt, or if you have a tall girl, you might not need to cut them at all.

You'll want to cut the elastic so that it is just 1" shorter than your child's waist circumference.

2.  To start, pair each piece of outer fabric with a piece of inner fabric, right sides together.  With a 1/4" seam allowance, sew them together with a zig-zag stitch along one of the long sides (this will be the bottom of the skirt).  Turn the piece so that the right sides are facing out again and press along the seam for a nice crisp edge- with no need to hem it!  Repeat with the other pairing.

3.  Now take both panels and place them with the outside fabrics facing together, and line up all the edges.  Using a straight stitch and a 1/4" seam allowance, sew straight down each of the short sides.  Clip as close to the stitch as you can and press the seams open.  (Or you can serge it if you're fancy like that.)

4.  Just like with the tutorial from Make it and Love it, you'll want to create a casing for your elastic that allows for a bit of wiggle room.  Use a zig-zag stitch, and leave about an inch or two open so you can insert your elastic.  Thread the elastic through the casing (Ashley recommends using a safety pin on one end to fish it through).

5. Overlap the ends of your elastic by an inch and attach them together with a zig-zag stitch.  Tuck the elastic into the casing, and sew closed the gap that you left.  Then just turn your skirt right-side-out and put it on your little model!

Of course, if you send her out with Daddy to take pictures, make sure he understands what you mean by "full-length shots".

That face you make when Mommy's making fun of Daddy and you're not having it
So there you go!  A super simple little skirt.  I'd love to see you make one- if you to, post a picture on Instagram and tag me ( @ourgeekyadventure )!

What have you made lately?

Much love,
The Geeks

Monday, September 19, 2016

A Bed Fit for a Monkey

I never did a proper nursery tour when Chief was a little baby, but the decor theme was space- I made sheets with a galaxy pattern, Mr Geek's old Star Wars action figures were artfully posed on the walls, and I found some great prints of the TARDIS and the Enterprise.  Now that we're in a new house, she's got a new room, and therefore a new theme.

This time it's a zoo!

My mom bought her a growth chart when she was first standing on her own, which I unfortunately don't have a picture of.  It's pink and has various jungle animals on it, so it didn't match the space decor in the nursery and we hung it in the hallway.  But her massive collection of stuffed animals inspired the idea for a zoo theme, and the growth chart inspired the color scheme.

Project number one: sheets!

I took her to Joann Fabrics and pretty much as soon as we walked in the door, she pointed at a shelf and said, "I want the monkeys!"  Luckily, this green monkey-print cotton is exactly the sort of thing I was looking for.  I found a coordinating brown polka dot fabric that I can't seem to find online, and I already had this ribbon in pink in my stash to tie it all together.

Here's the results!

I used this tutorial from Film in the Fridge to make the pillowcase, using both fabrics and the ribbon as an accent (though you can't quite see it in this photo).  I must have done something wrong when cutting, though, because somehow the pillowcase ended up just a hair short for the pillow.  I keep saying I'll go back and fix it or make another buuuuuuuuut I probably won't, let's be honest.

This tutorial from Offbeat Home is pretty old now, but it's what I used for her crib sheet, and since this mattress is the same one we used in her crib, it worked for a bottom sheet here, too.  Since the bed is cleanly made in this photo, you can't even see the bottom sheet, but it's the brown polka dot fabric used on the pillow.

I was just going to do a fitted bottom sheet, but on Pinterest one day I found something I'd never heard of- a fitted top sheet!  It's made essentially like the bottom sheet, only you leave off the elastic on the top corners and simply fold down the top several inches.  This way the top sheet won't come un-tucked- it's got elastic sewn right in!  So that's what we used the monkey fabric for.

The blanket is one we've had since she was a tiny baby.  I'll probably look for a proper quilt when it gets cold out, or even make a simple comforter, but for now, this fuzzy blanket will do (and it ends up on the floor most mornings anyway).

She loves it!

It's super comfy :)

I'm still gathering artwork to decorate this room with, so I'll save the rest of the decor for another post.  But I do want to share a little peek at a simple print I put together myself using PicMonkey- my favorite quote from Where the Wild Things Are on a green background, framed with this simple unfinished laser-cut frame I picked up at Michaels.

What sort of decor does your little one have in her room?

Much love,
The Geeks