Teeny Fox DIY

My sister is living in Honduras right now as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I made a Snow Monster and Owl thinking maybe she knew some kids who could use a soft, little toy. I sent her pictures of them and she said she knew exactly who needed a toy.

I don’t know his name but this little boy’s only toy is a knife. A knife!?!

That’s when I decided to make this teeny little fox! I figured it would be more appealing to a boy than a fuzzy toy wearing a pink bow 🙂



In all honesty I think teeny fox here is cuter than the owl or snow monster (sorry ladies) and he was easier to make! He’s small and will fit perfectly in that little boy’s hand. Now he’ll have something softer than a knife which makes me happy.

I didn’t use a pattern – making these little toys isn’t a science so they don’t have to be perfect. I drew on the felt with a colored pencil and cut out the body (front & back), tail, white poof for tail, and all the details for the face.

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I sewed the front and back together leaving a hole at the bottom so I could then flip him inside out. Don’t judge my sewing skills – I had just gotten home from work and I had zombie brain. That and I was trying to sew with my darning plate and that wasn’t the best idea I’ve ever had.

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At this point I stuffed him, making sure to fill in his little ears really well so they would stand up. I flipped the bottom hem in and sewed him up! When I made the snow monster I sewed on all the small parts – eyes, teeth, bow etc. but I decided to take the easy way out on this one and used a hot glue gun.

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He’s nothing fancy but he’s cute and I think will make a great toy 🙂 Now he and all his friends are set to go to Honduras and make little children super happy!

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Hopefully my sister can send me pictures of the kids she gives them to. If she does, I’ll be sure to update with pictures and any extra information she shares about the kids!

That’s life with Mr. Layland & Me!

Reupholstering 101

I found this chair just down the street on the sidewalk and I’m still praying that I didn’t accidentally mess up some kid’s plan to set up a lemonade stand.

This post is called Reupholstering 101 because I’ve never reupholstered something in my life and this project was really easy. The chair was in pretty good condition – a few marks on the seat but the wood was clean and sturdy. So I took it home.

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Once I got it home I let it sit in the kitchen for a few weeks. That step is unnecessary. Finally the day came and I had enough time and energy to go pick out fabric at JoAnn’s! I chose this fabric because the circle in the print is a great size to create a focal point on the chair and the color combination has great contrast. It’s not too crazy.

I unscrewed the seat from the chair and spray painted it outside. Even though I was painting it on gravel and weeds I still put newspaper down.

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If you’re spray painting on anything really – you’ll want to cover the surface with newspaper or a tarp or something so you don’t end up with paint on your mother’s deck. That would be bad. Really bad. So be smart and put a covering down!

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I have the hardest time being patient with spray paint. I know you’re supposed to do light strokes, back and forth. But for Pete’s sake that takes a long time! I’ll admit I got a little impatient towards the end and did a few long strokes. Then I ran out of paint. Luckily, my mother-in-law had three other cans of black spray paint so I was back in business pretty quickly and finished painting!

Back inside I started on the seat cushion. I lined up the pattern right in the middle and pinned the edges in place. This helped the fabric stay centered while I figured out how best to proceed.

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Ideally you would use a staple gun with staples meant for a staple gun. Like I said, I get impatient. I used a stapler.

Don’t judge. I’m not trying to sell this chair so I don’t need to impress anyone with professional grade staples. However, if you live in the Phoenix valley and you want to make an offer on it – be my guest!

When it comes to the corners pull the fabric tight in little sections, overlapping them and trying to avoid puckering.

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Staple all the way around the seat cover making sure to pull the fabric taut. Cut away the excess fabric & voila!

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There you have it, a brand new seat cover. Because the old cover was in pretty good shape I left it on there and double covered the seat with this new fabric. My Mom suggested it, saying it would help the chair wear better. Less work? Sounds good to me!

On my first round of painting the chair I had missed a few nooks and crannies so I went back through and did some touch-up painting. Unfortunately that meant more waiting. I think it was worth it though. After a few hours I attached the new seat back onto the chair and there you have it!

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I was so pleased with how it turned out! It was a great project to learn how to reupholster furniture because all I needed to cover was the seat. I would highly recommend starting with something like this – simple and quick.

If y’all have any suggestions or tips for bigger reupholstering projects I’d love to hear them! I’m always open to new ideas and suggestions!

That’s life with Mr. Layland & Me!

Ring Holder

I love baking and making homemade pizza but both can be pretty messy. After I got engaged to Mr. Layland I quickly learned that the window sill above the sink is not the best place to keep my ring while I work my magic in the kitchen.

This DIY Ring Holder can be transferred from the kitchen to the bathroom or you can make one for both. It’s up to you!


I like having mine in the bathroom sometimes too because I don’t like the idea of soap and face wash chemicals on my ring. I’m a little obsessed with cleaning my ring so I also use this holder to dry it a cleaning. It comes in really handy.

It’s really simple to make & you can make it according to your style so it’s exactly what you want! I got this small frame at Hobby Lobby for less than $5. I had the white lace and pin on hand. It took me about 10 minutes to put this together.

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Most frames come with a fake picture or a paper inside. Lay the lace (or patterned paper) over the insert and cut it to fit. Put the lace and insert back in the frame.

This won’t work if the frame has a glass cover. This one came with a plastic cover which was perfect. Use the pin to poke a hole in the upper middle section where you will eventually secure the pin. Remember your ring needs room to hang!

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Using wire cutters (or not your Mother’s best scissors) cut about 1/2 inch off the pin. Poke the pin into the hole and make sure it’s really secured in there. You might have to play with the angle a little bit to make sure your ring will stay on.


There you have it! A super cute and safe place to keep your ring while you bake or wash your hands or take a shower! Sometimes Mr.Layland will put his ring on it too – but only when mine is already hanging there. It’s really precious ❤

That’s life with Mr. Layland & Me!

Not Your Mother’s Zipper Pouch

I started sewing with my mother when I was a teenager but it’s been a while since I’ve taken on a project. In the middle of college what non-fashion-design student has time to sew? Or a sewing machine, for that matter.

The woman I nanny for has been sewing up a storm in order to open her Etsy shop, Rykie B’s. It’s actually thanks to her that I had the guts to try anything with a zipper!


This is the very first zipper I’ve ever done. I’ve never attempted it because it looks so complicated. If I can do it – you can too! Trust me!

I got the in-person tutorial the other morning at work because Tara has been making these adorable wet bags. Her fabric is the cutest and they’re super functional.

In addition to getting her to show me the ropes I also followed this online tutorial by Reasons to Skip the Housework. I’m glad I did because I almost had an inside-out zipper pouch! Measure twice, cut once — and always double check the picture before you sew!


When I bought this fabric it was on clearance at Hobby Lobby and I had no idea what I was going to do with it. That was six months ago and I’m really glad I hung onto it!

One thing the tutorial doesn’t exactly clarify is that the top stitch needs to go through both the lining and the outer fabric. The zipper is already sewn in at that point but the top stitch helps to secure the lining down so it doesn’t get caught in the zipper.

The next project I want to try is an adaption on this — a laptop case. Stay tuned!

That’s life with Mr. Layland & Me!

Fairytale Tutu


Before you judge, I didn’t make this tutu for me 🙂


When I first moved to Arizona I started nannying a little girl named Olive. She had just started walking and was the cutest little toddler with red hair and blue eyes.


She was full of smiles and everywhere we went people would comment on her hair. I have to say I miss that! It’s been four months since she started school and I’m hoping she’s still really into tutus 🙂

Last night my mother-in-law offered up this pink and white tulle and I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it. I had seen tutorials on Pinterest for tutus and figured it wouldn’t be too hard.


It took me all of twenty minutes!

I added in strips of shimmery pink and five strips of white lace to make it a little different than the typical all-tulle tutu.The waistband is a long strip of the white lace with knots at the end so it won’t fray. The tulle stays on the lace really well so it should last a while!

That’s life with Mr.Layland & Me!

I Love You Because

You know when you’re in that thing called love?

But you’re also really busy with that thing called life? How do you share your love with that special someone when both of you are so busy and just fitting in a date is difficult?

For the past few months Mr. Layland has had almost the opposite work schedule from me so our time together is mostly on the weekends.

This romantic DIY project has helped us to stay close even when we don’t see each other as much as we would like.


UPDATE: I recently switched out the paper to coordinate with our new bedroom. I got the paper at JoAnn’s and absolutely love the little hearts!


The first time I saw this in action it said, “I love you because…you did the dishes!” My cousin Travis and his wife Lexi are one of the cutest and happiest couples I know and it was their I Love You Because frame that I saw first.

I loved that idea so much that I made one for Mr. Layland last Christmas! Sometimes the things Mr. Layland writes on our frame are so sweet it completely makes my day.

What you need:

1 Matted frame (8×10 or bigger)

1 Sheet of scrapbook paper

1 Set of alphabet stickers

1 Dry Erase Marker

Take the mat out of the frame and use the outside edges to trace a rectangle on the back of the scrapbook paper. Cut the paper along the lines. Insert the mat and paper back into the frame. Spell out “I Love You Because…” along the top and you’re set to start writing cute little notes!

You can also add your anniversary date at the bottom. The 143 in mine means “I love you”.

This frame is one of my favorite things we have. It’s not only cute & people think it’s really sweet when they come over but it makes it easy to compliment each other! It’s allowed both of us to express our feelings and helped us to know that the little things we do don’t go unnoticed.

It takes thirty seconds to write a message and you never know, those words can change your loved ones’ day!

That’s life with Mr. Layland & Me!

Wine Bottle Planter

Wine Bottle Planter

Some projects turn out much better in your head than they do in real life. This project was definitely that sort of project. It was the project that would not die, the project that would not end and by the time it was over I vowed never to do anything like it again.


Rather than simply recycling your wine bottles, consider repurposing one to create a one-of-a-kind plant container. http://www.greenlivingaz.com/2014/05/27/mosaic-wine-bottle-planter/

It looks pretty simple, right? And I’m sure with an electric, professional grade glass cutter, it is! I tried a few ways to get this result including the good ole soak-yarn-in-acetone-and-light-it-on-fire method. Not the most effective method but definitely the one with the most flames.

My deadline was coming up and I was out of options so I came up with a new project. The Mosaic Wine Bottle Planter. Instead of trying to make one clean cut I improvised and here’s what I came up with:


  • Wine bottle
  • Glass Cutter
  • Safety goggles
  • Hammer
  • Gallon bag
  • Sharpie
  • Super glue
  • Mod Podge
  • Sandpaper
  • Cork or rubber studs
  • Small rocks
  • Potting soil
  • Succculents


  1. Draw an oval lengthwise along the front of the wine bottle with a sharpie.
  2. Put on your safety goggles. Use the glass cutter to score the bottle following the black line. The glass is thick, so you will need to go over the line a few times until you create a small track.
  3. Place the wine bottle in the gallon bag and close it. I would suggest going outside on a grassy area for this next step.
  4. With the wine bottle still in the plastic bag, hit it with the hammer. One firm hit should shatter the bottle. Try to keep the pieces as big as possible.
  5. Take out the biggest pieces first and super glue them back together, adding the smaller pieces to fill in the holes creating a mosaic look. Be sure to leave out any pieces from the inside of the circle where your plants will be. If a piece didn’t break along the line and you have excess glass, hit that piece individually to make it smaller.
  6. Let dry 30 minutes.
  7. The edges will be uneven so use sand paper to smooth them out.
  8. Coat the bottle with Mod Podge to seal the cracks and keep the bottle shiny.
  9. If you still have the cork, you can cut it in half and glue the pieces to each side of the bottle to keep it from rolling. You can also use two marbles or tow stick-on rubber stubs.
  10. When using the bottle for planting, make sure to place a layer of small rocks or pebbles at the bottom so the roots don’t sit in water. Any plant you use should have shallow roots and need minimal watering.

Once your mosaic wine bottle planter is complete, you should be able to repot your shallow-root plants an display them in your windowsill to enjoy all summer long.

It was an experience, that’s for sure. Thanks to the Arizona heat I ended up having to re-do the same bottle.

Once was good enough for me.

The picture in this post was featured with my article in Green Living and is from etsy.com. I know you’re curious how mine turned out but the good version was never photographed and the second version…well let’s just say this picture gives you what we like to call the right idea.