My Week in Review – Cosplay Mom Make-over, White Plates, Toddler Painting, Park Hops and Good Teeth

It’s good to be back home! We had a great vacation and then jumped right back into things with the GAAM event, I got some new plates to better display food pics, we got messy with some paint pods, spent the morning at the park with Jax Moms Blog and K had a great visit to the dentist.

Week in Review July 30 – August 5

The Mom Make-over – Originally we had been working on costume from Final Fantasy for the GAAM event. Then we ran into “mom time” issues and didn’t finish in time. I wasn’t going to let my friend Effie attend her first big cosplay event not dressed up, so we threw together an anime inspired look to fit the theme. Here’s our big Before & After looks:

Showing off the Food – All my plates are colorful and most of them are old with scratches and chips. They aren’t the best thing to display dinner creations for recipe posts. I noticed most people (and restaurants) are using white plates so the focus is on the food. I guess I have a hard time NOT choosing color because I picked these out with the light blue rim. I used them for the first time to show off a meal made with Prego Cooking Sauce with chicken and mushrooms, which is a campaign I’m currently working on. I got to try the Creamy Lemon Parmesan and it made a really delicious easy meal.



Let’s Get Messy – I invited Effie and her son Alex over for a messy afternoon of toddler painting. You can pretty much put “toddler” in front of anything and it becomes a messy activity. We were sent some fun games from Goliath Games and the kids had a great time with the unspillable paint pods in the Paint-Station. They went at it with paint brushes, fingers and later entire and dinosaurs. The paint washed off everything amazingly well!


The Last Park Hop – We made it to the last Jax Moms Blog Park Hop of the summer and got to practice putting, take pics with the Little Mermaid, build and shoot a rocket and just run around the park like crazy. They choose a different park for every event in the summer and bring in a lot of fun activities and vendors. I think there needs to be a fall session as well, hint hint….


Clean teeth – We also made it to the dentist this week. Little K was very brave and had a good cleaning. I was a little worried since I have the hardest time ever getting him to brush his teeth. The folks at Fishman Pediatric Dentistry did a great job making him feel comfortable and rewarded him with a big blow-up monkey and a new little car!


That’s it for this week! As this posts on Monday I’ll be on my way to my own dreaded dentist appointment. I’m just hoping I can be as brave as my son! Wish me luck. At least they prescribed me some Valium so maybe I can get through my appointment without tears too, lol.

The Weekly Round-up: Past, Present and Future Edition

Since I’ve been gone on vacation for two weeks, the usual weekly round-up post is being replaced today by a short update.

PAST– The biggest highlight of the past couple weeks of course was our trip to Ireland. It’s inspiring a new “Tips for Traveling with Toddlers” post. We’ve travelled with Keelan since he was an infant, both within the US and internationally, and I’ve learned a lot along the way. I’d like to share some of my favorite tips since it seems like every article I’ve run across is just rehashing the same old stuff. Most of it is useful, but I plan to include some things I didn’t read about or even think of. I’ll have it posted next week. (so I guess this is also kind of future too…lol)

Candy Keane at Temple Bar
Me and Keelan at Temple Bar in Dublin

PRESENT-┬áThis highlight of the weekend will be GAAM on Saturday night! My attempt to help a friend make a costume wasn’t met with total success, so we will keep working on it for a different event. Trying to make anything on “mom time” is a real challenge! So instead we are just throwing together something fun anime inspired stuff to match the event theme.

Candy Keane as Rosalina cosplay
The first costume I ever made for GAAM – Rosalina from Super Mario

FUTURE- And the next big event after that will be PAW Patrol Live! I’m currently giving away 4 free tickets to the Jacksonville show on my Facebook page:

I’ll be drawing the winner and announcing the name on Facebook on Monday, July 30th!

paw patrol tickets
I’ve got the tickets!

That’s it for me! I’m looking forward to getting back in the swing of things at home and maybe unpacking. Just maybe. So far I’ve only unpacked my make-up and hair stuff. I have priorities you know.

So what is everyone looking forward to doing this weekend?

Cosplay Tutorial: Changing the Color of Leather, Pleather and PVC

81o2X8E7YzL._SL1500_Sometimes it’s hard to find the right color shoe to match your costume! This is an easy way to change the color of any leather, pleather or PVC shoe (it also works on clothing!) with a type of spray paint you find in an auto store. The spray is made for changing the color of car seats so it’s made to soak in and stay flexible.

I use this technique a lot and it works way better than regular spray paint. If you’ve tried that then you know how it will flake off and crack after one wearing. I’ve had good luck with Color Bond Seat Stylin, which can be found on Amazon. <– affiliate link. This brand has some colors that are harder to find in-store, like purple and blue. You can always find red, black and tan at any auto parts store.

It works best to use several light layers so it has time to soak in. Make sure you stuff your shoes with tissue paper to avoid painting the inside and also cover any zippers or parts you don’t want painted with tape.

I did a video showing this technique on my YouTube channel:

The Total Cosplay Makeover – Mom Edition

The night I started the meds for my IVF cycle, I was supposed to run a table for my boutique at a big cosplay event. I had worked really hard to bring my character to life and was excited to wear the outfit as part of a trio. Things did not go as planned. The drugs made me really ill and I ended up puking in the parking lot before the event started. We never even got photos of our group – the Lady Luck dressphere from Final Fantasy X-2. I was Paine, the one in blue and black.

So that costume has sat in a drawer for the past four years. The best part of cosplay is wearing what you put all the effort into making, so I never got to really enjoy it. I was not in shape to wear it post-baby. And now, the event I made it for is coming up again, and the theme happens to fit. So I was thinking…maybe…maybe I can wear it again and finally get to enjoy it!

And now the fun part- I’ve managed to convinced a mom buddy, who has never done anything like this, to make and wear the Yuna cosplay. (The pink and purple one) So here is our before photo:

I’ll be helping a first time cosplayer put together an outfit, and covering it on the blog, to show the progress and eventual transformation from stay-at-home-mom to video game vixen. My friend up for the challenge is Effie from Project Mom Strong, and she will be posting on her accounts as well.

We will be wearing the costumes at GAAM, which has consistently been voted one of the top cosplay events in Jacksonville. We also have a friend doing the third one in the group, Rikku, so I will finally get that group photo!

Effie has a son around the same age as mine, so we are both in the same place of getting used to our post-baby bodies and working on getting them back to where we want them to be. It’s a process of hard work and also acceptance that some things are permanently altered. We both could use a little extra motivation at the gym, so this is our motivation! We have a month to push a little harder, lose those last few pounds, and then celebrate by dressing up and partying.

Follow our Total Cosplay Makeover progress on social media:

Instagram: @SewGeekMama & @Project_Mom_Strong

Facebook: Candy Keane & Project Mom Strong

YouTube:SewGeekMama & Project Mom Strong

Happy Sunday! How was your week?

Hope everyone had a great week! Mine was kind of crazy with prepping for the Comic Con at the library and dressing up for three different events. I did the beaches parade, an appearance on the Ch. 4 Morning Show and Beaches Library Comic Con. I’m worn out and ready to just wear a tank top and shorts for a while, lol.


I’m looking forward to Mother’s Day next week! I really enjoyed working on a Babbleboxx campaign where I got to try all kinds of different great gifts and blog about it. I feel like I’ve been celebrating Mother’s Day all week already! I’ve been doing a lot of sampling and reviewing lately and trying to have fun with it. I get really bored with blogs that are just one product after another, so the product has to be something I can tell a story about or create a story around. I also try and think about ways to make the photos a little more interesting than a standard stock photo. The hubs has been pretty good at coming up with photo ideas. This is my favorite shot for Edible Arrangements because it’s kind of silly, but totally true because I do really love getting those things! I’ll take a chocolate covered strawberry over a flower bouquet any day.

Edible Arrangements
OMG! I get to eat this!

Right now I’m literally sitting around waiting for paint to dry so I figured I’d do a quick Sunday blog post before I head back out into the yard to finish sanding and painting the lamp posts. I have one more to finish and I’ll have finally completed a project I started a few weeks ago! Next I’m planting some cucumbers on a trellis in the backyard and working on the mailbox area. Lots of house projects in the works!

And speaking of that, pretty sure it’s time for the 2nd coat on those lamp posts so back to work for me. How was your week?