Monday, January 24, 2011

::Right Now::

right now, I am ...

:: wanting a fireplace or wood stove to warm my fingertips and toes. My bones even feel cold.

:: loving that the days are getting longer, even if only by a few seconds each day. Leaving work late is much easier to manage when there are still specks of sunlight on the horizon.

:: wondering if I should make a twin or queen sized quilt out of the extra Anna Maria Horner fabric I just had to buy. 

:: feeling sad that my friends have left, but happy to have spent time with them.

:: enjoying season 2 of the Office on Netfix. I can't believe I never watched it when we had a TV. 

:: admiring my new (old) wall hanging.  

:: smiling at the birthday card display in the kitchen. I am lucky to have so many nice friends and family members.

::anxious about buying a new car, which has been bumped up on my to do list, in order for my other "to do's" to get done. 

:: taking a break from the purple dress so as not to get aggravated and tear it to shreds. 

:: rejoicing at all of the wedding planning that has been getting done lately. 

:: reminiscing about my first marathon after receiving my "finishers certificate" in the mail today. 

:: planning a week of productivity, snow days or not. 

:: wishing everyone I love would stay the way I would like to remember them.

Happy Monday!

Idea and inspiration from SouleMama.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Just in Case

Did you hear it's supposed to snow tomorrow? In preparation for a potential snow day I decided to cut out a pattern I've been dreaming about for quite some time... you know just in case it does snow, and we do get a day off, and Charlie leaves me alone for 2(+) hours, and my serger doesn't make me want to pull out my hair. (As a side note; have I ever mentioned how much I hate cutting out patterns? I always get the sizing wrong. I used 10 billion more pins that I should, I don't have a table to do it on so I have to sit on the floor, I have to follow directions, yuck. I hate it, but I decided that if tomorrow is in fact going to be a snow day I want to have this horrible process out of the way so I can fully enjoy myself. End of rant). 

The pattern I used is from "Sew U Home Stretch", which is all about sewing with jersey and other knit fabrics. The fabric is purple jersey from Marden's for $2.99 a yard (and it's 60 inches as opposed to 45!! Cha-ching.) 

 I'm going to make this dress. Cute huh? Hopefully it will turn out alright, and if not, oh well the fabric only cost $5.98.
While I was on the floor cursing patterns, and stabbing myself with pins, I figured I might as well cut out another one. I snagged this pattern from my Mum last weekend. I don't think you can see from the picture but the shirt has pin tucks all down the front, very cute. The blue fabric is also from Mardens.
 And just in case we do have school tomorrow I cut out and glued together this "Consonant Blend" game for a few of my students. One should always be prepared, for a school day or a snow day.


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Seascape Wedding Present

Remember long long ago when I dyed fabric for a project? Yeah, I kind of forgot about it too. Well, back in March I dyed the fabric, and in April I made this for Charlie's birthday, and I also turned a lot of the dyed fabric into this:
A seascape. The idea came from an example of another "Accidental Landscape" I saw in a quilt store.  Here's a close up, please excuse the pins.

I knew right when I saw the example that it would be perfect for my friends Keith and Sam as a wedding present. They were getting married in June and I thought I would 100 percent be able to get it done...... but, not so much. I can't remember all of the excuses I made; mostly I think it was lack of time and not being able to find the exactly right elements. Anyways, to make a long story short, 7 months after the wedding the seascape is officially done and has been given to the happy couple.
 The colors look a little bit different here because it is framed. For finishing touches I used scraps of lace as the waves, green variegated thread for the sea grass, and little beads and bits of sea glass to look like shells. Throughout the scape I used different colors of silver and gold thread to add texture and shine, kind of like sand. Here's a close up of the fence where I added my initials and the year.
 I think my most favorite part is either the lace waves or the starfish made of beads, or the fact that Keith and Sammy like it. 

Lastly, here is a picture of the framed and finished product.

 In writing this I just realized how many of my friends are getting married this year, guess I should get crackin' on those gifts so they'll be done by 2012.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

25 Things To Do In My 25th Year

Last year on my birthday I posted 24 things to do while I was 24, and even checked my progress yesterday. Now that I am 25 I have to think of a whole new list plus one. Here goes:
  1. Get married.
  2. Buy a new (to me) car.
  3. Go somewhere I've never been.
  4. Keep running (I don't really have a distance goal this year, and I never really set time goals for myself, I just want to keep running even if it means running after a long day at work with a reflective vest and a headlamp.)
  5. Host a party.
  6. Get better at my job/ keep learning.
  7. Call my friends more often. 
  8. Visit my family.
  9. Keep saving money for a house.
  10. Start more traditions with Charlie.
  11. Be more comfortable doing things alone (eating out, going to the movies...yikes I break out in hives just thinking about it.)
  12. Visit at least 2 waterfalls I haven't been to yet. 
  13. Go on a road trip. 
  14. Make new friends.
  15. Be nice and appreciative.
  16. Research sewing machines and buy a new one (one that can make button holes).
  17. Go on lots of mini adventures.
  18. Hike mount Kathadin (and not complain once while doing it).
  19. Grow my hair long then cut it off. 
  20. Practice my (forgotten) sign language skills. 
  21. Sew clothes, with and without patterns. 
  22. Cook more. 
  23. Try my best to not talk negatively about people.
  24. Spend quality time with people I like. 
  25. Be happy with my life. It's a pretty good one. 
 Think I can do it all? I sure will try.


      Monday, January 17, 2011

      24th Year Wrap-Up

      Last year on my birthday I made a list of 24 things to do while I was 24. Now that 25 is quickly approaching I decided to go back to my list and see if I made any progress.

      1. Graduate with my Master's degree. - Check!
      2. Find a job. - Done!
      3. Move closer to the White Mountains and find a (2 bedroom) apartment. - Did that too! I should have added, "Re-do 2 bedroom apartment" as well. What a relief that the painting is over.
      4. Cook more meals/ be more adventurous in the kitchen.- Well, sort of. We've been trying out new recipes a lot lately. 
      5. Read for fun. -Negative. I did get two new books for Christmas and have started reading one.
      6. Make outfits/clothing for myself.- Now that I have a dress form, and a serger, I should be making more clothes for myself....
      7. Run a long race (more than a half marathon, but less than a marathon.)- Ha! This is funny to read. I did the wapack race, 21 miles up 8 mountains, and also a marathon. Pretty good for a girl who didn't think she could ever run over 5 miles.
      8. Be more appreciative of what people do for me. - I am trying. The goals about doing things are so much easier than the goals about thinking or realizing things. When I get frustrated I try to remember all of the nice things that Charlie does for me; cook me dinner, go to quilting stores with me, hang out with me even when I am sick, addresses Christmas cards so I don't have a panic attack, etc.
      9. Stop complaining about my parent's divorce; it's been 5 years, I should probably get over it.- Practically done.
      10. Draw and paint. -
      Does painting rooms count? I have painted a few things besides walls this year, nothing to brag about though.
      11. Go to farmer's markets.- Welp, not so much. There's always next year.
      12. Be more aware of what I eat and where it came from.- Oops.
      13. Be nicer.- I am trying. I would say that I am thinking more before I speak in order to be a nicer person.
      14. Start an etsy shop.-No. I decided it wasn't for me. 
      15. Learn how to and execute the refurbishment of my dresser. (A project I have been meaning to do since I got the dresser 4 years ago.)- Drats. Maybe with the sander I got for Christmas this will happen.
      16. Volunteer. Double drats.
      17. Accept my nose, it's big, oh well, it's mine. Like my dad says; "If your nose was any smaller I wouldn't know you were coming into the room."- Done. I can honestly say that I have not complained about my nose in a year.
      18. Make at least 1 more quilt, and experiment with new quilting techniques. (But let's be honest, this will probably turn into about 3 quilts.)- Yep :) I only made one, but I have started another one.
      19. Be more giving with my sewing projects, who really needs 43 purses? -  I am trying. Giving handmade gifts is really fun so that makes giving away something I spent a lot of time making easier. 
      20. Have confidence in the things I do, say, and wear. - Part of my job is knowing what I am talking about, or being able to fake it really well. I am getting there.
      21. Organize and simplify. -  Organize, yes. Simplify, no.
      22. Learn more about having good credit, saving money, stocks, just money in general, since sometime soon I will have some. - Well....I do have some money, and I am trying to save some to buy a house/ car someday in the future. I am very wary of stocks.
      23. Watch less TV.- Done! We don't even have one. Pretty hard to watch lots of TV when you haven't got one. I was worried that when I went to visit people who have TV's I would get sucked in, but the opposite is true. I have no patience for commercials or boring shows. I consider this one of the biggest successes of my 24th year.
      24. Find something enjoyable to do, and something to be happy about everyday. -  I'd say so. During dinner I have started asking Charlie what the best part of his day was and thinking of the best part of my day. Usually it's something small or silly that I might never have shared unless I was really thinking about the day.

      I think I have made some good gains and changes. I'd say that complaining less is probably the biggest one followed by drastically minimizing the amount of TV I watch. Now I'm off to think of 25 things to do while I am 25, and also enjoy the last day of being 24.


      Thursday, January 13, 2011

      Laptop Case

      Lots of good things have been happening lately. The first is that I got a brand spankin' new laptop for work. Yahoo. The second good thing is that yesterday I had a snow day. Double yahoo! Put these two things together and what have you got?

      A new laptop case!

      I used this tutorial which I found on a website of 19 laptop case tutorials. The tutorial was only confusing at one point, and it could have been because it was 10 o' clock at night. It's made from all scraps and things I had on hand, because who wants to drive 35 minutes to a Joann Fabrics in a blizzard? Luckily, I buy zippers of all colors and lengths so I had a long enough one for this project. It's also lucky I have been practicing with zippers for the past 15 months and actually managed to make a (nearly) mistake free zipper, curves and all.

      The laptop fits perfectly inside (because I fixed it three times.) Now, if only the laptop would stop breaking/freezing/deleting my files/ needing to be sent back to the Tech guy at school a.k.a my new bestfriend Dennis, I would have the laptop to put inside the case, and more importantly, to use. Hopefully the third visit to Dennis will do the trick and this laptop will work by tomorrow, and be the talk of the school in it's super cute handmade case.


      Saturday, January 8, 2011

      Pincushion/ Back in the Saddle

      After Christmas I was pretty tired of sewing. It probably had something to do with deciding to sew every person I knew a present, and not realizing until the last minute that my goal was purely absurd, and then being stubborn and sewing all of the presents anyways. In the midst of all the sewing and wrapping and stress I didn't even realize that I didn't take any pictures of the presents. What a bad blogger I am! My forgetfulness, and stress, and maybe a stomach bug, made me realize I needed a break.

      So a break I did take. Until last night when I decided that I could not sew another thing until I had a new pincushion. I found this tutorial which lead me to this other one, which is the one I used. I liked the first tutorial but didn't feel like making mine out of 6 different fabrics. I used left over scraps from Sammy's Apron.

      Pretty cute huh? The tutorials said to fill it with fiberfill but I thought that would be too light. Mine is filled with rice, so it's heavy and sturdy and won't get knocked off of the table and shoot pins everywhere.

      After sewing this little project I felt inspired and started cutting out and sewing quilt squares out of the Anna Maria Horner Voile I bought back in (gulp) August.

      Now, thanks to a little pincushion  I am back in the sewing saddle and boy does it feel great.  Off to cut some more squares!


      Wednesday, January 5, 2011


      Have you heard of Wordle? The librarian at school told me about it and I've been playing with it on Charlie's computer. (Didn't I just say I would stop wasting time?) Anywho, Wordle works by taking any piece of text and making the words used more frequently bigger.  I made two for work and this one is made by linking my blog into the program. I guess I said "just" and "year" a lot in my recent post.

      Here's another. I made it out of one of my favorite poems. Do you know what it is? 

      Pretty cool huh? Okay, now I am going to stop wasting time. 


      Tuesday, January 4, 2011

      New Years Resolutions

      I've been going back and forth on whether or not I want to post my resolution for the new year, as well as whether or not I should make them in the first place. I tend to make goals like "lose 15 pounds". When you've weight the same amount since Senior year of high school that's a pretty tricky goal to attain. However, I have decided to not make any weight loss goals this year, I have also noticed how if I write something for all to read I feel more accountable for it. So, here goes: my resolutions.

      1. Be nicer- To this most people have responded "but you're nice already." Yes, to you I am nice, but to Charlie I am sometimes downright mean. This makes me sad to say, but it's true. I tend to hold things inside until I get home and then, for lack of a better word, explode, usually in front of Charlie. I suspect this is because I am comfortable with him and can't seem to keep my inner jerk contained when I am upset about something. In testing this resolution out for the last 4 days I have been quite surprised with how much better I feel and also with how easy it is to just keep my mouth shut if I don't have anything good to say. So my biggest goal in 2011 is to be nice to myself and to Charlie. It is after all the year we're getting married so I figured I should start off 2011 and our marriage on the right foot. 
                                                   regards to the wedding...
      2. To not act like Veruca Salt prior to or during the wedding. Once someone told me I acted like her and I was moderately horrified and always wondered if he was joking. I hope to keep my cool and not turn into a Bridezilla or a spoiled rotten 9-year-old on July 16th.
      Although, it would be really fun to quote her in some cases, "I want a ball, I want a party, Pink macaroons and a million balloons and performing baboons and ...Give it to me Now!" Sorry, I couldn't resist, but I will come wedding time.

      3. Sew more clothes for myself- I have yards upon yards of fabric stashed in corners of my apartment waiting for me to make them into articles of clothing. I should just do it already. Here is a short list of items I want to make (so I will stick to my guns):
      • Pheasant top- blue flower print.
      • Wool skirt- yet to be purchased wool fabric
      • Summer dress- green jersey fabric purchased at MOOD last January (see what I mean!!)
      • Sweatshirt- purple jersey I found for $1.50 a yard!
      • Summer skirt- blue patterned jersey print (also from MOOD, I have a problem)
      4. Waste less time- I seem to waste a lot of time doing practically nothing. Most of the time I swear I am in some soft of daze. For example, today I got home from running at 4:30 and then all of a sudden I was still in my running clothes sitting on the floor staring at the computer and it was 5:30. Geeze! What was I doing for that hour? I have no idea! That should stop (ahem) be minimized.

      5. Make friends- I've been living here for 5 months and I have no friends. Sad but true. I keep making excuses like; "no one my age lives in this town"or "no one who is my age in this town has the same goals or interests as me." In reality I just don't know where to look for friends. I've been in school for the last 18 years of my life. For about 12 of those years I was with people I had known my whole life. In college I made friends with people on the team with me, we shared the same sport. In graduate school I shared the same passion and goals with all of my friends. Here it's just harder. I work part time at two schools, which doesn't seem like enough face time to get to know people. Heck, it's January and I still don't know everyone's names! Also, as I have mentioned, the people I work with are older. I can't tell you how many times people have said; "My granddaughter is your age!" Part of me wants to say; "That's nice, does she want to be my friend?" I am not exactly sure where to look for friends around here but I am determined to find at least one.

      Those are my resolutions, what are yours?

      Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...