Friday, January 9, 2015


As we all know, change is basically inevitable. Now that I am approaching the big 3-0, I am feeling not only more receptive to change, but also I feel like I am really thirsting for it. This, in addition to my "One Little Word" for 2015 (Grow). I have decided to take a huge step and move on from this blog.

No, this doesn't mean that I am leaving or quitting blogging, by any means. This means that I am starting a new blog and leaving this one behind. I feel like I need a fresh start with a new name and a new layout. This blog was fun for a while, but it no longer feels like me.

Also, I eventually plan to make products to sell, so I want my blog name and business name to be interchangeable.

I'm not linking my blogs together because I am ready for a fresh start and a clean break. So, this blog will still be here in order for you to reference my older, more popular posts. And my new blog will be completely separate.

So go check out the new blog at: http://rufflesrustandsawdust.blogspot.com/

My Pinterest and Instagram are linked up to the new blog and I have a new fan page created and ready to go. You can definitely follow along with me on all three social media sites.

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/RufflesRustSD/
Instagram: http://instagram.com/rufflesrustsawdust/
Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/RufflesRustandSawdust
Blog address: http://rufflesrustandsawdust.blogspot.com/

Also, lastly I want to make a huge shout out to Crystal at My Ramblings. She took my sloppy idea for a logo and turned it into something beautiful.

She is so incredibly talented and I don't know what I would do without her. She's amazing. You should probably go buy some Tupperware from her.

Anyway, be sure to change your bookmarks and I will see you over at Ruffles, Rust & Sawdust!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Strawberry Spinach Salad with vinaigrette dressing

Who doesn't love a good salad? Me, that's who. This weekend I got a huge craving for Strawberry Salad, and I had to have it right that second. Or at least that evening. I did a lot of searching around on Pinterest, but none of them were exactly what I wanted so I borrowed the dressing recipe from here: http://juliasalbum.com/2014/07/strawberry-spinach-salad-with-bacon/ and I made up the rest myself.

1/4 cup oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Medium bag of spinach
10 strawberries, sliced
1/3 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup real bacon bits
Whisk dressing ingredients together. Set aside.
Combine spinach, strawberry slices, Parmesan cheese, and bacon bits in a large bowl. Pour dressing over top. Toss to coat.
It can't get easier than that ladies and gentlemen!
I didn't even feel guilty eating this with a homemade cheeseburger and fries! (Ok, maybe a little...) This is definitely a new favorite!

Do you have a favorite "go to" salad recipe?

Friday, January 2, 2015


Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a great time ringing in the New Year. We took a more low key approach and hung out at home this year.
As the new year approaches everyone is all about making resolutions. Don't get me wrong, I think it's great to have goals. If we don't have goals then we have no aspiration to do better with our lives.  But, what I don't want to do is get into the trap of making resolutions that I will never be able to keep. Mostly because that ends up making me feel like a failure. And no one likes to feel like a failure. Especially me. 
As New Years Eve approached I was toying with making some resolutions, but then I found about "one little word". If you have never heard of one little word, it is basically choosing one word to reflect on and meditate on each day throughout the year. (More info about "One Little Word" here.)
It took me a little bit of time to settle on a word, but once the word came to mind it just stuck. My word will be "grow".
I have a lot of growing I want to do this year. I want to grow as a Christian, a wife, a mother, a teacher, and just as an individual.
As a Christian, I want to grow stronger. I want to build relationships with those that I am sitting next to on Sundays, and I want to serve in the church,
As a wife and mother I just want to do a better job. I want to be present more, and just continue to strive to make more memories with my family.
As a teacher, I want to continue to grow. I want to complete my CDA and my degree, but most importantly, I want to continue to learn constantly so that I can be the best possible teacher for these kids.  
As an individual I have a lot of growth to do. I want to spend my spare time doing things that make me happy. I want to be healthier, and just be happy with myself.
2014 was a good year, but I'm looking forward to 2015 being even better. Do you have a word to focus on this year?

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Felt tree and fireplace for dramatic play

If you have been following along lately, you already know that I have really worked on my dramatic play center this month. Here are the finishing pieces.

First, a tree!
I bought a package of green felt from Hobby Lobby and cut out a large triangle with it. I glued it to a poster board to make it a little more stable. I didn't get a picture after I added the trunk, but I just glued a brown rectangle to the bottom to finish the tree off. I cut out a felt star and several felt circles for the kids to decorate the tree with. They had a blast decorating their tree and making gingerbread cookies!
I also made a fireplace! I attached red felt to a poster board and drew lines to make it look like bricks. Next, I attached black felt to the middle to give it the fireplace effect. The flames weren't as easy. Turns out, I can't draw flames. At all.

So, I found this image via google.
I can't find a good source for this image, so if it's yours let me know!
Anyway, I printed it off and used it as a template to cut out flames in various sizes and colors. I just glued them into place.
Lastly, I added a "mantle" made with brown felt and cut out stockings for the kids to hang.
Also, the picture above was when the glue was wet. Once the fabric glue dried I couldn't see it anymore.
The kids are loving this set up! It will be hard to compete with for sure!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Christmas Felt Boards

Happy Saturday! I spent some time last night working on a few felt projects! I made two fun Christmas felt boards... One gingerbread man and one snowman.

I started by printing off a gingerbread template I found online and tracing it on to brown felt. 
Then, I used some different colors of felt to cut out the buttons, eyes, nose, mouth, hat, icing and hair bow. Then, I used red felt for the background.  The kids will love it!
Next, I made my snowman! I used a bowl, a lid, and a mason jar lid to trace the snowman. 

Next, I cut out the eyes, carrot nose, buttons, a scarf, and a bow. 

Then, Rachel made me a Katy Perry snow woman. Haha.

This is just the tip of the iceberg! I'll have more to share later! Now off to shop til I drop with the family! 

Friday, November 28, 2014

Felt Gingerbread Cookies for Dramatic Play

Happy Thanksgiving weekend! I hope everyone is relaxing and getting some family time in! I was sick yesterday, so I definitely got a lot of rest. Now tonight I am attempting to get to work on some projects for my December dramatic play center. I made these felt cookies last weekend, but I thought I'd show them off before I get to work.

I started out by using a cookie cutter to trace onto some cardstock and some brown felt. After cutting them out, I glued the cardstock and felt together using fabric glue.

After I stuck them together I stuck a magnetic strip to the back of each "cookie".
The cookies stick to a cookie sheet with the magnets. I bought a spatula so they can scrape the cookies off the sheet before they are served.
Once they were made I used some puffy paint to make faces and buttons. I just need to pick up a oven mitt and this project will be ready to go! Stay tuned for more projects that I'll be churning out this weekend!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Christmas Sensory Bottles

Happy Sunday evening! I am just wrapping up another very productive weekend. I'm hard at work getting stuff ready for my Christmas lesson plans.... So, I thought I better give you guys a peek at what I've accomplished!

I made a whole row of fun sensory bottles!

First, I dyed a bunch of rice red and green. I will be using some in my sensory table, but I filled up a bottle with colored rice and added buttons so the kids will have a Christmas Eye Spy bottle. The buttons are Santa, a red bird, a pinecone, a snowflake, a gingerbread man, a Christmas tree, and some pine needles. This turned out so cute!

This bottle is filled halfway with water, halfway with corn syrup and then silver glitter was added. This will be for my sensory center.

This bottle has water, glitter and pine needles. When its shook up it looks like a winter storm blowing around a pine tree!

These are red and green pipe cleaners. When the kids rub a magnet wand up and down the bottle the stems will attract to the magnet!

And the last one is filled with red and green pom poms!

I glued each bottle shut with E6000 glue. I can't wait to see my kids enjoy them!

This is just the tip of the iceberg, so stay tuned for more fun Christmas projects!