Tryptophan Trail Run

by This is Carrie on December 8, 2013

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Instead of Black Friday shopping, I opted for the Tryptophan Trail Run in Trabuco Canyon organized by Skyler of The Endurance Family.  From the moment I arrived, I could immediately tell I was way out of my league.  I might have been the only one in the gorup not talking about an upcoming ultra distance trail run.


Even so, they let me tag along and we logged 15 miles and 3,700’+ of elevation gain in the rain.


So glad I got to share this First Annual Trail Run tradition with my visiting niece (my running inspiration).



Thanksgiving 10K 2013: Plymouth Rock ‘n Run

by This is Carrie on December 7, 2013


Turkey Trots are just as important to our Thanksgiving tradition as Turkey.  Instead of dressing up turkey-like, the kids opted for Santa costumes and Sparkle Athletic skirts, shouting “Merry Thanksgiving!” to everyone around them.

Made with Repix (

The three youngest did the Kids K while Princess ran the 5K with her friend at the slowest pace since she was 6 years old.  But they had fun skipping down the route handing out imaginary turkeys to the other runners, so that’s all that matters, right?


At 3 years old, Baby Brother is an old pro at races, telling me “i’m going to go fast, you keep up”


I do my best when I can latch onto someone running just outside my comfort zone and luckily I found that woman at mile 2. She was amazing and totally encouraging once she found out that I was pacing off her.  For the first time in a while, I pushed myself to the “puke point” right before the finish line. After my considerable break from running on a regular basis, it felt good and bad all at the same time.

It wasn’t a PR, but it felt good knowing I’m not starting at square one as I head into Boston Marathon training. Luckily my road biking and Hit the Mark Fitness BootCamp has sustained some level of fitness.

Time: 49:23
Pace: 7:57/M
Overall Place: 99/552
Age Group Place: 4/46


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mood designer fabrics crochet collar dress

Wool houndstooth suiting isn’t your typical Christmas dress fabric, but it’s going to be a cozy, houndstooth holiday for the girls this year.

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Check out the details of this vintage-inspired dress on the Mood Sewing Network blog.

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Find the instructions for this detachable crochet collar HERE.


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Making Stuff: Sweater Knit Dress {Mood Sewing Network}

by This is Carrie on December 5, 2013

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I’d never sewn with a sweater knit before but when I spotted this gorgeous, lightweight, italian wool sweater-knit at Mood Fabrics I decided it was time to give it a try.


During a Vogue pattern sale, I picked up this Rebecca Taylor pattern (V1315) (despite it’s awkward photo).

sketch copy copy

It was those amazing droopy pockets that got me.  I cut size 8 based on my measurements, but I wished I would have added more length in the bodice. Since I don’t sew for myself very often, I forget that I am long-waisted.  To see more pics of the finished product and the amazing neck detail, head over to the Mood Sewing Network blog.


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Making Stuff: Spider Bean Bag Toss Game {Lion Brand Yarn}

by This is Carrie on November 15, 2013

spider bean bag toss

I imagined and began this Spider Bean Bag Toss game over two years ago when I first got my hands on a pack of Lion Brand Bon Bons. I finally finished all the spiders just a few days before this last Halloween. Finally getting it up on the blog a couple months later which you can either consider too late for last Halloween, or amazingly early for next Halloween.

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Just in time for some pre-trick-or-treating festivities with the 5


Scrap fabric at least 6″x12″  for each spider, 1 package of Lion Brand Yarn Cotton Bon Bons, googly eyes, spider web mat (fond mine in the dollar section of Target).

Download Spider Bean Bag pattern PDF HERE.


1.Cut 2 spider shapes out of each fabric

2. Cut 84 pieces of yarn 12″ long. Separate into 12 strands. braid 3 strands together, securing at each end.  I suggest cutting a piece of cardboard 12′ long and winding yarn around it then cutting at each end all at once.

3. Fold yarn legs in half and baste two pieces to each side of spider body creating four legs.

4. Sew spider body shapes right sides together from mark to mark leaving a hole.

5. Trim and turn

6. Fill with “bean” of choice. I like to use rice or lentils.

7. Hand sew hole closed

8. Glue on googly eyes.

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You’re probably going to be jealous of my spider mat which I found in the Target dollar section 2 years ago. I can’t believe how perfect it is for this little bean bag toss game.  A web could also be made out of posterboard or fabric.

*Pattern and tutorial for personal use only.


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Making Stuff: Baptism Dress {Mood Sewing Network Project}

by This is Carrie on October 26, 2013

baptism dress

Before I cut into my beautiful Anna Sui eyelet fabric from Mood Designer Fabrics, I knew I needed to test my self-made dress pattern.

printed dress

I didn’t want to make the sample dress from muslin…you know…just in case it turned out great. A piece of lightweight, printed cotton from the stash was just what I needed.

printed dress

I worked out a few kinks in the construction process and decided the bodice was a little too full.

printed dressMaking practice garments in something new to my sewing habits (I’ve been more of an instant gratification kind of sewer the past few years). But, each time, the practice has proven invaluable to creating a more perfect and less frustrating final piece. When you work with gorgeous fabrics, the extra time is worth the trouble before you cut into the good stuff.  You must check out the finished product over at the Mood Sewing Network blog: Anna Sui eyelet baptism dress.



Making Stuff: Lace Printed Tank {Fabric Spray Paint}

by This is Carrie on October 24, 2013


Plain shirt,  Next Level Fabric Spray paint, lace yardage, temporary spray adhesive (optional).


Lay lace across shirt (to get a crisper image spray lace with spray adhesive before laying on shirt. Then spray with paint.

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Once dry, remove lace and repeat on the back of shirt.

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Enjoy your new shirt!



Halloween at the Discovery Science Center

by This is Carrie on October 15, 2013

There’s no better time to visit the Discovery Science Center than the month of October when you can “explore pumpkins, learn about the phases of the moon, explore a spooky 3-D maze, check out spiders of all sizes and colors, and much more” at the Spooky Science exhibit.

There is nothing more spooky than getting up close and personal with tarantulas and black widow spiders.

The kids can get their “craft on” making googly-eyed jack-o-lanterns.

On the weekends, the little goblins can make slime, participate in a costume parade, and see special stage shows like “The Wizard of Ooze.”

You definitely don’t want to miss the 3-D maze.  It really is amazing!

Spooky Science isn’t the only featured exhibit at The Discovery Science Center right now. The Science of Ripley’s Believe it or Not has come to the center and will be staying until January 5, 2014.  The kids have been obsessed with the Ripley’s believe it or Not books for a few years now and have been dying to go to one of their many museums. 

This exhibit is a great, kid-friendly taste of Ripley’s “compendium of oddities, anomalies and fantastic feats” as well as the science behind the unbelievable collection.  With it’s many hands-on elements, I haven’t ever been to a museum exhibit that could entertain all four of my children (ages 2-11) at their own levels for an extended amount of time.

Make friends with a Megalodon…..jaw casting.

Be stumped by the “mystery gate” (they eventually figured it out).

See how you measure up to he world’s tallest man.

You don’t want to miss these two great exhibits at the Discovery Science Center this October (both included in regular museum admission).  Find out more details HERE.

My children and I received a preview of The Discovery Science Center’s Spooky Science and The Science of Ripley’s Believe it or Not exhibits.  All opinions in the post are my own.



Making Stuff: Vintage Baby Dress {Mood Sewing Network}

by This is Carrie on September 22, 2013

You have got to check out my latest post over at the Mood Sewing Network.  It might be the best/cutest/most immaculate thing I’ve ever made.  At least I think so.  Starting off with a gorgeous Marc Jacobs print from Mood Designer Fabrics definitely helped this project get started on the right foot.

Finally seeing the dress on it’s recipient really sealed the deal. All-time favorite dress.  Such a doll.



Making Stuff: Cutest Crochet Booties on the ‘Net

by This is Carrie on August 14, 2013

Booties are fun to crochet because they are highly rewarding without a whole lot of time investment.

Crochet Mary Jane Booties with contrast toe

Pattern: Chloe Slippers by Mamachee (If I were you, I’d go ahead and buy one of her pattern packages because you’ll definitely want a few…at least I did).

Yarn: Madeline Tosh Sport in neon yellow from Purl Soho
Angora Merino in natural beige from Lion Brand Yarn

Crochet Baby Boat Shoes

Pattern: Crochet Baby Boat Shoe Bootie by Whistle and Ivy

Yarn: Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light t in “smokestack” (gray) from Purl Soho NYC
Madelinetosh Tosh Merino light in “edison bulb” (neon yellow) from Purl Soho NYC