Friday, May 8, 2015

Sprout's Colors Book

I had seen a few fabric color books on Pinterest so when April Vacation hit I pushed aside all of the other more important sewing projects (diaper bag, maternity sewing projects that will fit me now..) and started sewing something that the baby won't need for a while but I felt I like I really wanted to do.

Jaimie helped me fill in some color holes, since I had very little black and orange fabric. The actual sewing of the colored pages didn't take too long. I tried to be crazy but it turned out to have a lot of straight lines. Crazy quilting just isn't my thing. The white pages with the color name were made using wonder under to adhere the fabric letter and then embroidery floss to write the rest of the word. embroidering words is so hard because you feel like you're spelling the word wrong even if it's an easy word you obviously know how to spell. Staring at it for so long makes your brain do funny things. I did almost all of the embroidering while watching Silicon Valley with Charlie. That show is funny.

Each page had a layer of white flannel between to make it softer and hide the seams from the colors pages.

I made it too many pages to be able to sew through all of them at once, even with the walking foot. Too much flannel!This meant I had to kind of wing the binding aspect and hand sew a lot of them together, then hand sew the blue part around the edge to cover the mess of thread and fabric.

I can't wait to read it to Sprout, and for Sprout to drool all over it and throw it around with his or her chubby hands. Eeek! I think that feeling of excitement is why I wanted/needed to finish this project before other more "pressing" sewing projects.

I do have more projects to share, just very little energy to take the photos needed to post, but lots of energy to go outside and enjoy the lovely weather we've been having. I'll get to it.


Monday, April 27, 2015

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Two Years of Homeownership

Today marks two years since we "bought" (signed a loan for 30 years) our house. Sometimes it feels like we've lived here forever and other times like we just moved in. Either way it still feels very much like home. About once a week I will say to myself, or to Charlie, or Penny and Blaze, "I just love this house." I really do. I love driving home and pulling into the driveway, seeing Charlie cooking dinner inside or the pellet stove glow on the walls. Watching the dogs little heads in the windows (because they're standing with their front paws on the windowsills I spent hours painting!) I love having a garage, even when I forget to open the garage door while exiting and crack two of the four windows. I like that everything we need is in the house, and that it is almost exactly the way we want it to look. I love how I look around and it feels like us and shows all of the hard work we've put into it. Mostly though I love who I share the house with and who will be joining us to live here. I'm excited for this house to have a baby live in it, and a toddler, and a kid. I'm happy for all the house has taught us so far and excited for all we still have to learn.

Man that got sappy quick. In order to keep you from crying here's a list of my favorite projects to date, and I am using "favorite" loosely here since actually doing some of these projects was not really fun, but the end result is awesome.

1. My sewing room. When I think about what it used to look like I am blown away by how much paint, click flooring, elbow grease, a new desk and a few curse words can get you.
2. The downstairs paint job. Again, paint can take you a long way.
3. The outdoor shower. I love this addition and can't wait til it's actually warm enough to use it again. I think everyone should have an outdoor shower.
4. Painting the outside. OMG did that take forever but was so worth it.
5. My plants. The indoor plants are doing great. I even divided several recently since they were doing so well. Only problem is I am running out of places to put them. The outdoor plants are a bit more fickle but I am learning.

Projects I still want to complete:

1. New front steps. I'd love two solid granite steps at the front, and would so love if the "shade loving" plants I added to the front of the house would grow and look like they do in magazines.
2. Floating shelves in the living room, so that the book shelf that holds two books and 10 plants won't tip over on Sprout once he or she starts crawling. I realize this isn't a project that needs to get done now, but I sure does feel like I need to do it now.
3. Make a path to the outdoor shower and bury the gutter pipe so it stops flooding the patio. Wouldn't it be lovely if soft moss would grow and line the path to the outdoor shower? Instead it's muddy and rocky, not exactly what you want to walk through to get back into the house after a relaxing shower.
4. Make the grass grow! I have put little to no effort into this project with the exception of raking one million acorns off the lawn, but I look at the grass and really wish it would be nice and green, not brown and mostly dirt. Then I think "first world problem" and get over myself.
5. Fix the garage door I destroyed.


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Divided Baskets for Babies

My friend from high school is having a baby 3 weeks before me! It was so exciting when we both found out the other was pregnant. I thought I was going to fall over from excitement.

Her shower was last weekend and I made a divided basket for her and filled it with things I think she would need for her bundle of joy, but really what the heck do I know? She's very into researching things so I have basically been buying/registering for the things she does. She researched car seats for days and I just took her word for it and asked my mom for the exact same one. One review said a mother was driving with her baby and the car rolled over three times and the baby didn't have a scratch on him. Sold! How'd I get so off topic? The basket was really easy to make once you cut out all the dang pieces. So much interfacing! Cutting the pieces out is my least favorite part of sewing, especially now that my belly gets in the way when I need to work on the floor with bigger pieces of fabric.

It was so cute I decided to make one for myself...I mean Sprout.

Of course it's made of elephant fabric. I sure hope Sprout likes elephants because this room is quickly filling up with them, much like the rest of the house. I am not sure what will go inside of the basket just yet. I'm sure I'll find a use. Until then it's pretty cute huh? And Just a sampling of the elephant collection in this room. 

Here we are at her shower. She's having a girl and carrying much lower than I am. Old wives tails might imply that mens Sprout is a boy. More people have predicted that as well. Who knows though? Guess we'll find out in July. I just want Sprout to have 10 fingers and 10 toes, and preferably weigh less than 10 pounds, but if I had to chose I'd pick the first two requests over the last.


Thursday, April 16, 2015

As Of Lately: April

It's been a long time since I posted last. Whenever that happens I feel like it's harder to get back into posting since there is a lot to post about, a quick picture and word dump seemed like the best way to get back into it. I say "get back into it" but have very few ideas for future posts; we'll see what happens.

Lately I've been....

Slowly putting together Sprout's room. Not knowing the sex is fun (really, I swear I love not knowing) but it makes picking out decor 10 times harder "is it too boyish/girly?" is our new favorite phrase around here. On the (very) plus side it has kept me from buying tons of outfits, decor, sheets, quilts, etc. 

Anxious about all of the stinking leaves and sticks that emerged from under the snow! I'm only anxious because bending over is getting to be more of a challenge, raking takes me 3 times as long as it used to, and Charlie is too busy coaching to help me. When will all these leaves get raked?!? 

Thinking about how lame it sounds to be "anxious" about leaves. Can "nesting" urges happen outside the four walls of your home?

Making plans for a garden. Half of me knows I am crazy for thinking this is realistic to take care of a baby and a garden all summer. The other half keeps saying "You'll be home all summer! You can do it." And the positive iota in me keeps saying "You're garden was an epic fail last year, so you've really got no where to go but up.....or fail again which wouldn't be so bad either, just try." 

Sewing baby things. Mostly for other people. Baby fever for sure, but I am enjoying it. It's fun to have friends who are pregnant too. 

Reading every night.

Proud of all the progress I've made in my goal tracker. I was floored to find out that I read and flossed everyday in March! *Pats self on back* April has been going well in those two areas as well.

Finishing "Me Before You" and feeling like a heartless human because I didn't cry, or even think about crying. This is especially disheartening since I cry every time I see this commercial. I think the underlying problem was that I didn't really like the book. 

Going on long walks in the woods and saying baby names out loud into the forest. Still not totally set on names. It's very hard picking the name a person will have forever. I've also come to realize (but should have known all along) that I over think things far too much. I could go on for 30 minutes about all the things I consider when contemplating names, but I'll spare you. My dream is that when the baby comes the name will be obvious. "Name yourself kid!" If worse comes to worse we could be the hippy family who names their kid Sprout.

Attempting to make the perfect Rice Krispie treats and failing miserably. How can three ingredients be so hard to mix? They keep coming out way too hard, like break a filling, cut the roof of your mouth hard. I'd ask for suggestions, but really I just want someone (you) to make me a pan (or 7) and deliver them to my house.

Watching Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix. I'm not sure I 100% like it though. Some parts are really funny, but sometimes the main character annoys me. All (3) of the other shows we watched are over for the season.

Trying to figure out what the big fuss about "Wolf Hall" is. I know very little about that period of time, so I think my ignorance makes me not enjoy the show as much as the people I know who are super excited about it.

Loving feeling Sprout move. I am *this* close to being able to distinguish which body part is kicking/punching me. I keep waiting for the time to come when I get annoyed by the 3 am dance party that wakes me up every morning, but it hasn't. Turns out 3 am is a great time to think about how nice it will be when Sprout gets here, and how cool it is that my body is able to grow another human. It boggles my mind every time I think about it, even after 28 weeks.

Wishing it was April Vacation already.

Enjoying the (hopefully) last few fires in the pellet stove for the year. Come on warm weather!


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Winter Book Review

I have not been reading a whole lot, but have liked most of what I've actually read before falling asleep every night so I wanted to share.

The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion : This book was really funny. It was like a funny, adult version of "Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night." It didn't say it but I assumed the main character had autism so I automatically liked him. He also said things out loud that I think but know better than to say; which was funny. It was a good quirky love story and a very easy read, I read it in 2 days.

Yes Please, Amy Poehler: I took this book on vacation with us and had to force myself to put it down and people watch because I didn't want to finish it in one day. I honestly laughed out loud on the beach reading this book. I was thinking I might not be able to relate so some of the book, but Amy is so down to earth I didn't feel like she was famous or out of touch. My favorite parts were about her childhood, which seemed a lot like mine; normal, and boring enough that she had to imagine crazy scenarios to keep herself entertained. I also liked reading more about the cast of Parks and Recreation because I love that show. It was hilarious and I own it in hardcover so if you want to borrow it let me know.

Pregnancy Books-

Labor Day: True Birth Stories By Today's Best Women Writers: This has been my favorite pregnancy book so far. I've read 2. It's essays about birth by female authors. Everyone is different so it was interesting to read different perspectives and stories. The main thing I took away from it is that you can make plans for the birth until the cows come home but they might not do you any good. After reading this book my "birth plan" is as follows; Step 1: Have healthy baby. Step 2: Don't die. Step 3: Go home. My only complaint about this book is that there are some really sad stories included (miscarriage, stillbirth, failed adoptions) and they aren't marked in the book so you may accidentally read a really sad story and end up crying for 30 minutes. I ended up looking up the sad ones and marking them to I wouldn't read them. This sounds kind of immature right now, and maybe later I'll go back and read the other ones later, I just know I am not in a place where I want to read about sad baby stuff and set off my worrying mind. Aside from that I loved this book and would recommend it to friends who are pregnant.

Belly Laughs, Jenny McCarthy: I am slightly ashamed to admit I read this book, since I don't love (or even like) the author. It was written in 2004 before she went all anti-vaccine so there was none of that in the book. A very quick read about funny, embarrassing, and gross stuff during pregnancy. Things you're embarrassed to ask your friends but read and think "I'm glad I am not the only one." Other things I read and though "Thank goodness that's not happening to me....let's hope it doesn't." Some of it was pretty unrealistic considering she's mega rich and obviously has/had a housekeeper etc. to help her out. I did not have any belly laughs reading this book, but it was short so I got through it. If nothing else it was good for the "I'm not the only one" effect it had.

Up next is "Not That Kind Of Girl" by Lena Dunham.


Thursday, February 19, 2015

ABC Sampler

This feels like cheating since I finished this project over two years ago. I gave it to my mom and she was nice enough to frame it for me. and save it until the right time. We went to visit and she gave it to me to add to Sprout's room. It's a bit "girly" if Sprout is a boy, but I figure I will be the only one to remember what the room looked like at the beginning anyways. I'll be the one who is awake in the room the most. Also, when I was little my mom had a painting in my room of a mother holding a naked baby and you could see the baby's chubby butt.  I think it was a Mary Cassatt painting, but I am not totally sure. I distinctly remember finally being old enough to say "hey, I don't want a picture of a baby's butt in my room anymore." Wouldn't want to deny the child that experience in exerting his or her opinion about room decor.

It's a kit I bought, that is now only the pattern from Posy Gets Cozy. I really like how the frame turned out. My only wish is that I had added the year next to my initials. People keep asking if the baby's room will have a "theme." Not so much, unless "things I think are cool" is a theme.


Monday, February 16, 2015

Log Cabin Quilt

I cannot remember who had the idea for us to sew a quilt together me or Charlie. In September after pinning a lot of patterns we decided to go with a Log Cabin pattern and Charlie helped me do the math and pick out the fabric we both liked. I sewed 29 blocks and he sewed one. Then I realized around block 34 that there wasn't enough fabric so we bought more and I finished the 48th block, bringing my total to 47 and Charlie's to 1. He did help me lay them out over Christmas and decide on a pattern.

We should have done more research on how to sew a long cabin quilt because I messed it up and the blocks ended up not matching perfectly. I should have started each block with a solid as the first color, but instead I did half the blocks starting with solid and half starting with a print, which kept me from getting super bored, but also screwed up the pattern and resulted in blocks that do not match. I'm pretty sure no one would notice but me. Can you tell?

Don't look too's a cute dog on a quilt picture to distract you! 

Then we (I) did the math and we bought the backing fabric. Over a snow day I laid it all out and realized the back was too small so I added some scraps from the quilt to add the last few inches I needed. Moral of this story is that we are both bad at math when it comes to making quilts. Thanks heavens for scraps and fabric stores.

I thought about hand quilting it, then I realized it's a king sized quilt and came to my senses. It's tied, which is super fun and easy and not nearly as time consuming as hand quilting. Sewing the binding took me at least 5 days because my eye kept twitching and a kind sized quilt = a whole lot of freaking binding!

To be 100% honest this quilt is finished about 10 months faster than I thought it would be, so math issues aside it's a total success. I would not have picked out all of the fabric, but I really like how it all turned out. 

Have you finished anything way ahead of schedule recently? 


Thursday, February 12, 2015

"Maternity" Josephine Tunic

I have had this fabric for over a year waiting to make this tunic. I am very glad I waited because I used it to make  a "maternity" Josephine. Not many of my clothes fit right now, so it's nice to have something new to wear. I saw the idea on Rae's blog when she was pregnant.

The pattern calls for you to sew the tucks all the way to the bottom of the garment, but she modified it to only sew past the bust to allow for a little bumpage. I did the same since there is officially bumpage here. Students started commenting, so I must be showing.

I'm excited to try sewing more clothes for "maternity" wear. I'd like to use patterns I already have but am not 100% sure how to go about modifying those patterns. I'll keep you posted on my progress, or frustrations.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Lazy Person Problem

I want to win the $500,000 powerball, but I don't want to drive to the store to buy a ticket.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Habits Updates

All the way back in November I posted about the 5 daily habits I was trying to make become habits. Now into February I'm still working on them. It's getting easier, but not so easy they all just happen on their own.

Create: This is either great or really terrible depending on the week. At first I thought that the most important part was having the supplies ready to create something. Not true, you can have all the crap you need and still not be interested in the project. Key example: quilling, I have everything you'd ever need to make 100 quilling projects, but do I? No, quilling takes forever and I am not that interested in it (*side note, I should probably get rid of all my quilling stuff*) The most important part of trying to be creative everyday is to be excited about creating, whatever it is. If I am not into a project I am not excited to do it and will find excuses not to do it. Another hinderance is when a project gets finished and I don't have another idea of what to move onto. I had a period of four days after I finished Sprout's Blanket that I did nothing because I had no idea what to work on next.

Floss: This habit got derailed in December because two things happened. One I went away for the holidays and forgot to bring floss. Seems dumb right, but seriously it's floss, and I never remembered I was missing it until right before bed which made me just give up the pursuit of it before I even started. Moral of that story, pack it in your travel case! Problem two in my flossing, I got the flu and had no energy to get out of bed never mind floss my skuzzy teeth. Once I got better and got home I was right back on track and haven't missed a day. This is my easiest habit thus far, probably because it takes the least amount of time.

Read: One thing the holidays made me realize is that if you get out of your normal routine it's super easy to stay out of it. I didn't read at all over vacation and then it took me a while to get back into it. I've been reading a few books about babies, but nothing serious. I think I should check out a book from the library to give myself the time pressure to finish a book again. Any suggestions?

Exercise: For the most part I am successful at this. Being pregnant has made me more liberal about what counts and what doesn't. Hint, if I got off my butt for 30 minutes it counts. I have been doing my exercise classes, and doing "interval training" on our treadmill while watching Friends re-runs on Netflix. "Interval training" is a fancy term Charlie came up with for how I walk for one scene of Friends and then run for the next, then walk, then run. I also count walking the dogs if it takes more than 30 minutes. I have not run outside since the beginning of December and I don't even feel bad about it. I am paranoid about falling on the ice and snow. I read (on Pinterest) that doing squats makes labor and delivery easier so I try to do 50 a day, which works out to me doing about 50 a week, but you know. Too bad it's not the thought that counts in terms of exercising.

Be Kind: Last year it was "have patience" which matched with my one little word. This year my word is kind so I figured I'd put that as my habit. Like I said, when I am not "kind" it last for a few days and takes me a while to get out of my funk. When I am kind it's easy to keep the momentum rolling. Being kind mostly in terms of giving myself a check is if I said primarily nice things, didn't gossip or swear, was nice to Penny, Blaze and Charlie, and was kind to myself.


Friday, February 6, 2015

Sprout's First Baby Blanket

I've been debating for a while how or what to say on this topic. Here goes.

Charlie and I are having a baby!!! ** jumps up and down in excitement, then sits down really winded and eats half a watermelon,** We are very excited. We are not finding out if it's a boy or girl, so I call it "Sprout" instead of calling it "it". I bought the yarn when I was 7 weeks pregnant after my first appointment. I was so excited I had to do something, but also so tired that I knew I wouldn't have the energy to sew a quilt right away, but knitting, that's easy. I did most of it on the couch while watching shows or movies with Charlie and some of it in front of the fire while he cooked dinner. Knitting also travels much easier than sewing projects so I did a lot in the car on the way to places over the holidays, or at my in-laws while watching a Harry Potter Marathon.

The pattern was one I've seen many times before I was even pregnant and really liked from The Purl Bee. It was super easy to follow, even for me; a pattern hater and novice knitter.

It's super warm and soft, I want to cuddle with it myself on cold days.

I deviated a little and knit more than 10 rows for some of the colors, since I wasn't out of yarn yet. I partially wish I hadn't done that because now the blanket is much longer than it is wide, which makes for a bit of an odd shape. Made with love is what I'll say. And I sure do love this little Sprout.


**** This was at the beginning of the post but seemed too depressing and
 long winded so I added it here. Feel free to not read it.*****

I have promised myself I am not going to blog exclusively about pregnancy and the baby. I also don't want the baby to have his/her picture all over the internet before they have a say in what is posted. That doesn't seem fair to me, and I wouldn't want to do that to a baby/kid. My parents took all kinds of embarrassing pictures and videos of me, and I said some pretty dumb things, but there was no internet to post all that stuff on so those humiliating things are between us, the photo albums, and the VHS tapes. I intend to keep it that way with this baby. Sounds like a pretty boring blog now huh? That's what I was thinking too. I even considered not posting here anymore. As a good friend once said: "you don't have to post it on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter/your blog (insert other social media here) for it to have happened." Good point Sammy! If only more people realized that.

I do still like taking pictures of what I've created and sharing them here though. Another friend said that her blog serves as a reminder of things she had done and she likes looking back on old posts. I feel the same way, it's fun to look back on things I sewed ages ago, and also a good reference to what changes I should make to patterns etc. Conundrum city ensued, which is why I have not posted a lot (anything really) lately. After much thought I've decided that I have no qualms about sharing things I have sewed or made for the baby, so I think it will stay a crafting blog, but be less about the other stuff. If you want to know about that, feel free to call, text or e-mail me.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Word of the Year (Only A Month Late)

Last year I picked a word of the year to focus on. I never blogged about it, but kept reminding myself, almost daily, of the word. In 2014 my word was patience. Maybe I'll write a re-cap of that word later on, but it was very helpful. Had I known how much patience has to do with biting ones tongue I might not have undertaken the word, but I did, and am glad for it.

"Patience" seemed like a tough act to follow, so hopefully 2015's word will fit the bill. I've picked "kind" as my word to focus on this year. I had been trying to think of a new word since November and right before Christmas it just came to me and felt right. Obviously I love multi-meaning words, and definitions (it's my job!) so when I really thought more about "kind" I realized to me it has three prongs or areas.

-Being kind to others. I think (or at least hope) people would say I am a kind or nice person. Sometimes though (well, most of the time) my first thoughts are not always kind. These thoughts even escape my brain and make their way to my mouth sometimes. Until I started thinking about saying kind things I didn't realize how often I say not very kind things. The sad thing is most of the bad things I say are to the people I like or love the most. Eek. I feel like being kind also ties in my work on patience. In order to be kind you must be patience and kind at the same time. I'm also working on doing kind things for others. Saying nice things, smiling more, sending thank you notes, or random text messages to make someone I love happy. The best part of this so far is that it's helping me to notice when other people do something kind for me. I think people are genuinely nice and good, it's just hard to realize when you're not focusing on it.

- Being kind to myself. You know the saying, you are your harshest critic. So true in my case. For every one mean thing I say about other people I say 100 about myself. Being kind means that I accept my flaws and move on. The other day I forgot to renew my certification for something and instead of freaking out about it, getting mad at myself for being forgetful, or crying, I paid the late fee and got over it. No sense in beating myself up over something small in the grand scheme of things. It also means accepting that what I am doing is the best I can do. I tend to compare myself to others and think I am not good enough. I need to remind myself (often) that what I am doing is the best I can do at this particular time given the particular situations. Done. Well, not done, I need to keep reminding myself of it so I won't get mad when everything on my list isn't done and I still can't cook dinner without setting off the smoke detector.

- Spending time with my "kind". Get it? Kind can mean more than just being nice! I have realized that I am not really good at making friends. I am good at keeping friends, just not making them, there is a big difference. This year I am going to make more of an effort to continue to be a good friend, daughter, wife, sister, etc. I also want to put effort into building relationships with my kind of people. I am not exactly sure how I will go about this, but I have some ideas. Most of this primarily has to do with realizing that when you're 29 the definition of "friend" is a lot different than it was when I was 12, or even 20. Friends were all encompassing when I was 12, now that I am 29, not so much. I really enjoy spending time by myself, but also need to see that the people I choose to spend my time with are my friends, despite the fact that we've never painted each others nails, slept over at each others house, or talked on the phone for 2 hours a night. I also have been working on realizing that having 100 friends doesn't make you any happier than having 2 friends.

A month into my word and things are going well for the most part. I've noticed that the kindness tends to bring more kindness, and sometimes the kindness train comes to a screeching halt and stays in the station for 2-3 days. Kindness breads more kindness. It's hard to get back on track after falling off for a few days but I can honestly say I feel better when I am focusing on it and actively trying to be kind.


Thursday, January 15, 2015


This plaid flannel fabric was given to me for Christmas two years ago. Two! I'd be more ashamed if I didn't have 5 year old fabric sitting on my shelf.
There was a crazy looking bird I was looking at when this photo was snapped. 
Last weekend we had no plans and I was exceedingly happy about that after being so busy recently with visiting family and friends over the holidays. I told extra care when cutting out the pattern to try to match the plaids. I mostly succeeded I'd say, pretty good at least for a first try. Also, I've noticed that no one else every looks at stuff like that, and if they do, they are nice enough not to comment on it.
The pattern is my go to winter wardrobe pattern: the Tova. It's super easy to make, I know it fits well (because it's not very fitted) and I knew it would be warm even in the cold temps we're having lately. The last one I made was also flannel but I didn't add sleeves. I liked the jumper look to it but wanted something warmer this time.

My most favorite part is the buttons I added on the placket. The two other Tova's I have made are open all the way down and I sometimes feel like it shows a bit too much. I am a bit lazy (read:scared of button holes still) so I sewed the buttons on and didn't do any button holes. No one can tell, and only one button goes through both layers, the other ones won't be used anyways.

Charlie helped me hem it and I asked if he thought it looked too much like an old fashioned nightgown and he said "no, it just looks that way because you're wearing it with slippers." What a nice guy.

Worn with fleece lined tights, a pair of socks for warmth, and boots I was quite toasty all day.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...