Sunday, March 31, 2013

happy easter!

Happy Easter to all!  It was a GORGEOUS day in Seattle, and such a fun Easter Sunday.  We went to church with the Truongs.  Henry was the best boy, thanks to Opal providing the entertainment.  Then good food and egg hunting at Emily & Tom's. 
 Outdoor dining

 Cousin love!

 Hmmm, are there some eggs around here?

Found it!

 This kid had the most fun crawling around in the grass.  He threw a fit every time I tried to take him away!

Playing with daddy
 Happy Easter!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

opal's easter basket

Opal came over on Tuesday and we started a project.  We decided on an Easter basket!  The girl loves all things pink and purple.  So we hauled out my pink-and-purple scraps and started a little patchwork basket (I think she may have been slightly scared of the state of my scrap stash, and who could blame her?).

Stitched it up with a heavy duty canvas lining to make it stand up.

Now we're ready to hunt Easter eggs!

Friday, March 29, 2013

oh happy day

Sunshine.  Need I say more? 
Met up with our baby and mommy friends at the park.  The grass was a big hit.

Oh, and Henry totally said his first word.  Ball!  What can I say?  He's a natural athlete.  I mean look at his shirt.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

modern woodlands baby to-go bag

I might start calling these Baby To-Go Bags.  I made this one for myself with Emily's Modern Woodlands fabrics .
 A Zippered Bag!  
Everything fits inside with some room to spare.

 Snack Pouch and Burp Rags

 Changing Pad - with a layer of clear vinyl for quick mess clean-up.

Now I'm ready to take this squirmy babe on lots of spring outings.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

handsome cable sweater

I spent some very valuable nap time yesterday finishing this sweater (details about the pattern can be found here at Ravelry)!

  Spring is really starting to make an appearance here in Seattle, so I thought if I didn't finish it soon it wouldn't be cool enough to wear it, plus he would grow out of it too!  It's happened before; the handsome sweater vest you see Bernie wearing in the picture below is one that Henry never wore because he grew out of it before I put him in it!
 My little ragamuffin is wearing this sweater in the pic least we're getting some wear out of it.  Bernie is not so sure about the two sitting next to him.

 This is what it looked like yesterday morning...that's AFTER I ripped out and redid the hour's worth of work I had done just previously because I made a mistake. Woops!

But perhaps the real inspiration to finish came from my ladies in the newly founded Victory Heights Knitting Club - a group of neighborhood gals that have been meeting to knit (and drink wine of course...).  I'm so lucky to have awesome neighbors.  This will surely help me to finish lots of projects!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

baby stuff!

Now wouldn't this be the perfect baby shower gift?  I've been experimenting with making burp rags, changing pads and snack pouches.  And of course, everything has to be the right size to fit in a cute bag.  Personally, I don't like lugging around my giant diaper bag when I can help it.  This bag is just the right size for quick trips!
 The changing pad (yellow polka dot item, with the button) and snack pouch have vinyl inside for quick clean-up.

Or maybe it's an Easter basket?

Monday, March 25, 2013

long lost buttons

 It's amazing what can happen when you clean up.  Emily gave me this giant bag of buttons, and it lay forgotten in a box until last week!  Um, how could I forget about these?  Oodles and oodles of vintage wood buttons. 

Yay! And thanks, Em!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

new stuff in my shop!

My shop is open again and I've got some new bags posted!

Some of these fabrics are from my "stash" and I used up what was left.  So, when they're gone, they're gone!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Happy Spring! Went out looking for signs of life today.


 front yard

 found these spring chickens at the mall.

  Winter is such a drag that I'm almost happier on the first day of spring than on my birthday!  Happier than on Christmas morning!  Happier than Jamie during March Madness! (ha! as if that's possible.)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

on my bookshelf : winter 2012/13

Hey, look at this!  My book posts might finally get in sync with the actual seasons.  With spring starting tomorrow, I figured it was a good time to let you know what I've been reading to get me through these l oooooooooong winter months.

The Tiger's Wife : :
A woman sets out to find out the truth about her grandfather's death.  I liked the stories within the story going on in this one.
“My mother always says that fear and pain are immediate, and that, when they're gone we're left with the concept, but not the true memory.” 

The Girl Who Fell From the Sky : : Heidi W. Durrow
Well, this book was really interesting, and it was a quick read.  But it had some super-sad stuff going on.  Yeesh!
"It's easy to smile just to make other people feel better.  But when a person fakes happy, it has edges.  Regular people may not see, but the people who count, they can see edges and lines where your smile ends and the real you, the sadness or the anger begins."

The Passage : : Justin Cronin
Vampire Fiction? Really?  OK, I'm reading vampire fiction.  Have I ever told you about my fascination with zombies/end of the world nonsense?  Probably not, because I'm ashamed to admit that I'm drawn to it.  UUUGH, I'm totally hooked on this and now you know.  And this is the first book of a trilogy.  So you know what you'll be seeing next time.
“Sara waited a respectful time, knowing there was nothing she could do to ease the woman's pain. Grief was a place, Sara understood, where a person went alone. It was like a room without doors, and what happened in that room, all the anger and the pain you felt, was meant to stay there, nobody's business but yours.”

The Cellist of Sarajevo : : Steven Galloway
This book was so so so sad because, although the characters are fictional, it's set in war-torn Sarajevo...a scenario that was all too real.  OK, I'm about to get really deep with you here.  I have been coming across similar themes several times in the books I've been reading (specifically, The Passage, Sarah's Key, this one...) - captured with this quote:
“Because civilization isn't a thing that you build and then there it is, you have it forever. It needs to be built constantly, recreated daily. It vanishes far more quickly than he ever would have thought possible. And if he wishes to live, he must do what he can to prevent the world he wants to live in from fading away. As long as there's war, life is a preventative measure.”
...which also relates to a point in The Happiness Project (Gretchen Rubin) that I love:
"What you do every day matters more than what you do once in awhile." Don't you agree??

OK, on a lighter very latest read is

Mrs. Frisby & The Rats of Nimh : : Robert C. O'Brien
I just loved this book as a child, so I thought I should reread it. And since I want to end on a light note, here's the quote I'll leave you with because it makes me laugh!
"'I picked up the string. It got tangled on my foot.  I sat on the fence to try to get it off, and it caught on the fence.'
'Why did you pick up the string?'
The crow, who was very young indeed--in fact, only a year old--said wearily, 'Because it was shiny.'"

Who could blame him?

Monday, March 18, 2013

DIY monthly onesies: the perfect baby shower craft!

You know those adorable onesies Henry has been wearing for his monthly birthday pictures?  Remember how my friends made them for me?! If not, go back here. Well, Sara and I loved the idea so much that we decided to do the same for the sweet Reneé who is expecting her first baby at the end of March.

Let me tell you that this was THE CRAFTIEST shower I've ever attended. Reneé has some very very creative and talented friends!  She got crocheted booties, knit hats, hand-sewn burp cloths and was impressive and inspiring.  So clearly her friends were going to design some amazing onesies!


(note that crocheting was happening during the shower - love it!!)

I just love how they turned out:
Want to do your own baby shower onesie project like this? 

Here's what you need:

-12 onesies, in various sizes that will theoretically fit the wee one at each "birthday"  (I love Carter's brand!)

-Various fabrics for your guests to choose from.  Girlie? All-Boy? You can have fun here choosing your color scheme or theme (Reneé didn't know the sex of her baby yet, but knew she was going to have woodland creatures in the nursery, so we used lots of owl/tree/leaf fabrics)

-A pack or two of "Heat'n'Bond Lite" - find it here.  You will use this to create iron-on pieces from your fabrics.  Make sure you get "Lite" if you want to stitch the appliques on after you iron - for extra sturdiness.

-Several pairs of sharp scissors

-12 labels of some kind so guests know which month they're creating

-Iron and Ironing Board

-Optional: Number Stencils, Circle/Oval/Square Stencils, Any other stencils you think may be useful

Prep: (before the shower)
Label each onesie with the month it should be.  I used safety pins/cardstock pieces like this:
You could also use sticky labels that could be removed later!

Cut large strips of your fabrics, about 7" x 21".  

Cut strips of the Heat'n'Bond Lite, about 6" x 20" One pack (linked above) will give you 6 20-inch strips.  So order accordingly - if you are using more than 6 fabrics you'll want more than one pack!

Iron the "sticky-ish" side of the Heat'n'Bond strips onto the WRONG SIDE of the fabric strips.  Use the no-steam setting on your iron. If you have cut the pieces to the measurements above, you'll see that the Heat'n'Bond pieces are a little smaller than the fabric pieces - this is so you don't accidentally iron them to your ironing board, which is a sticky mess.  You can trim down the excess fabric after ironing if you wish!

These strips are now ready for your guests!  That's all you'll need to do until the shower.

Optional: You may want to experiment at this time with making a sample yourself so you can give your guests good tips and become skilled at ironing on the you're not fumbling at the shower. :)

At the Shower:
Before guests arrive, set up an ironing board and iron station.  Also set up a table with all the materials: fabric, pens, stencils, scissors.

Give each guest, or pair of guests -- if Mom-to-Be has lots of friends, a onesie.  Explain that they should make a design that represents the number on the onesie they received.  You could even print the picture of Reneé's onesies (here) or my onesies (here) to give them some ideas!

Then guests should...
Choose fabrics and stencils.

Draw designs directly onto the right side of the fabric with the water soluble or disappearing ink pens.  Tip: larger, bolder pieces are much easier to work with than smaller, skinny pieces.

Cut out the designs, then peel off the paper backing.

Arrange the pieces as desired on the onesie. 

Take onesie and all the pieces to the Ironing Board Station where the pieces can be ironed down.  

Carefully iron the pieces onto the onesie just as you want them to appear when finished. You can overlap pieces too - no problem!

That's it!  Super easy!

Optional: The ironed on pieces will stay put, but won't hold up extremely well to tons of drooling (the 2-5 month onesies will really take a hit) and washing.  If you think the baby will wear them more than just for the one photo-op occasion, you can stitch the pieces down with a zig-zag stitch on your sewing machine.  This can be done after the shower and then given to Mom-to-Be as a finished set.  Not necessary, and a bit tricky, but they'll hold up much better!

Finally, this deserved mentioning...Reneé's mom had a special design in mind, and she even brought a sketch to the shower so she'd be ready to go.  It didn't go with a particular month, but so what?  We used fabric markers to write the words and to make the sun's rays.  Don't you love this?!?
This lucky little one will be loved so very much.  Can't wait to meet Baby Weston!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

2OT + Happy St. Patty's Day!

Spent the day with Oliver + Opal yesterday! Alli met up with us for lunch at Red Robin, playtime at Greenlake playground, and fro yo. So what if it was raining? We just decided to do it all again on a sunny day. Easy!

And, Happy St. Patrick's Day! Jamie made corned beef & cabbage and I was in charge of the Irish Soda Bread. Yum!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

modern woodlands crib skirt

I got back to my sewing room this week to finish a project that's been on my To-Do list for a long time.  I made a crib skirt for this little guy's room.  The fabric was designed by the talented Emily and she calls the collection "Modern Woodlands."  Here's the glorious stash we ordered:

 I just love the colors she used, don't you?  And I was glad it matched my dining room walls.  See the whole line-up here and order your own at Spoonflower !