Friday, April 30, 2010

This Moment.

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. -Amanda Soule

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Making Waves Over Here!

About 4 years ago I had a dream that we adopted two kittens. I woke up so happy from that dream that I looked on craiglist that very morning and found an ad for two kittens that needed a home that day or they would be sent to the shelter.

A quick talk with Jeff and an hour later, we had Pepper and Luna living with us.

Last night I dreamt of sewing strips of aqua fabric together to mimic ocean waves and stitching it together with really cute mermaid fabric and doing some embroidery all over it. Well...

...I made last night's dream come true too. I am trying out some new seaming techniques and I got some fun stitching to do tonight. Very soon I will have a little quilt.

Jeff hasn't questioned any of my silly dream-crazies in the past and if anything, he has acted like they were quite logical. This time he just asked very politely where I was going to hang it when it was finished.

I am guessing he doesn't want it hanging above his workbench in the shop. I am not hurt and I couldn't dream of a better sport-of-a-husband either.

You dreaming of your weekend yet?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Whereabouts-That Blah Kitchen Wall.

This will be a "Whereabouts Wednesday" installment and a project share. Two for one!

The poor wall above our island/prep/eating area in the kitchen has been white and plain since we moved in. It now has a white and yellow shelf that was painted and put up in a questionable manner but still helps fill the space. I think the weight limit for the thing has been exceeded by the tiny red teapot that sits there very, very carefully.

I finally finished these guys and strung 'em and nailed 'em up above the rickety shelf. I actually really like it. If you have a white wall and want color you can't get much more colorful than a garland of rainbow fruit.

We all have our favorites (lemon and apple) and it is unanimous that the blueberries are the least favorite. I think I should have done a little bowl of berries instead of silly, flying, willy-nilly berries. Maybe I will re-do the blue panel.

Maybe not. We may just have to grow to love those darn berries just the way they are.

How do you decorate your kitchen? It can be hard huh? I would love to hear what yours look like.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Monday Check In.

Monday is over and I have yet to check in and blab about my fun weekend! Oh, it was busy like I mentioned it would be but fun just the same.

I got to see a good friend, her kiddos AND her gorgeous belly! There is a little girl in there, almost ready to come. (Mary-Can I take some newborn pictures too? Please?)

How fun to capture pregnant bellies and excited siblings. What a special time. This pregnant lady was scrambling all over and climbing fences even! All in the name of maternity photography.

I also got to shove pretty girls into muddy barns and they were such good sports about it. Not one complaint, even in wet, knee-high grass!

(Hope this sneak peak doesn't spoil any surprises, just had to share!)

Anyway, I had fun with all the picture taking, and the antique faire-ing, and the cooking show partying and the sewing class-ing(?). It was a full and satisfying weekend.

Now I am going to go rummage through my work in progress bucket to see what else I can busy myself with.

Have a good night!


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Friday, April 23, 2010

This Moment.

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. -Amanda Soule (SouleMama)

Here is mine from this past Sunday...

Hope you had at least one joyous, wonderful, pride-filled moment of your own this past week. (Those little toes are almost off the ground, almost!)

Have a great weekend and take time to slow down and enjoy. I will need to remind myself to do so the next couple of days, busy-busy.

See you next week with lots to share!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

T.V. Off, Pencils On.

I have heard that this week is "Turn The T.V. Off" week. Whether it is official or not, we (or I) decided to observe it.

There hasn't been one minute of watching time so far. It hasn't been hard to keep it off because we are pretty good about limiting T.V. in the first place. Admittedly though, the boys have been watching more since Minna was born and I am not proud of that. Another good reason to take part this week.

So, we have been outside more because the weather has been pretty accommodating and we have been coloring and drawing more, which I love! The boys dabble in drawing here and there and I am always suggesting it as an activity but they aren't into it as much as other artsy things.

Here is some of our coloring-goodness from the past couple of days;

I worked in this little book with drawings of dresses and other clothing already done, and you have to draw in the legs, arms and head and put in a back ground. I got the book for Minna but it is now in my personal stash.

Sully and Colyer got a beautiful coloring book of old Samurai paintings. They loved all the intricate details. I like that the sheets are one sided making each picture a mini piece of art.

Minna created this masterpiece which covered the table and most of the dining room floor.

No one was in front of the T.V. so I had plenty of help cleaning up.

Anyone else trying a week without television?
How's it workin' for ya?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Rainbow Fruit.

Lots of projects lately. Hope you don't mind because here is another!

Embroidered fruit! In rainbow colors!

In rainbow color order there will be;

apple, orange, lemon (my fave so far), 2 limes, blueberries (not lovin' how they look) and a bunch of grapes.

These will eventually be strung up together to form a little banner to cover up a very sad, blank wall in the kitchen. When I informed J of this he asked if it would be up there forever. Hmm, I am not sure he is crazy about the idea. He wasn't too crazy about me putting a picture ledge up by myself either. (Maybe because I refuse to believe in the importance of studs when hammering nails into a wall.)

But still, he is a good sport and that ledge is up and will soon be joined by a pretty rainbow of fruit. Possibly FOR-EV-ER! (Just kidding.)

Have you noticed a lot of rainbow color in my pictures these past few weeks? I have. From fabric, to cups, to egg dye. It's popping up all over and I kind of like it. So much so that a rainbow mini-quilt is in full swing. Quilt top has been pieced and is waiting for, well, waiting for something, not sure what yet.

Stay tuned!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Mama's Bag For Monday.

Did everybody have as full of a weekend as we did? Nice weather leads to busy doesn't it? I am glad we took advantage of it because Spring rain is in the forecast out here.

So, during our busy weekend I used this little bag that I made from our old shower curtain. It's the "Mama's Bag" from Handmade Home. This has been on my to-do list for a long time and I got to finish it up while Minna slept and the boys had a cozy movie night on the couch with their Dad. Ahhhhh, the joy of uninterrupted sewing time...

It came together pretty darn easily. Even the whole "outer-bag-inside-the-lining-and-pull-it-though" thing. Those instructions didn't make much sense until I actually had the two pieces in my hands. Oh it made sense, and I am sure all you bag-makers out there are familiar with the method. It worked and it was really fun to do.

In place of ribbon, I made my own little ties that are messy and thready but that is what I like. Especially next to the smooth bag fabric.

I improvised on the handles and made a double-sided set which made them very hefty. Possibly too hefty for the weight of the bag which has a linen lining. I like how those look though and will use that idea on other bags for sure.

Downers- The fabric wasn't fun to work with, or touch even. Duh, it's a shower curtain. Why did I use it you ask? I just wanted to re-use something I already had. Plus, I figured it would be pretty durable for a bag. I think it will be, if I ever use it again.

I also think the bottom corners are a little to pointy for my taste. Next time I will use a softer fabric that I am sure will bend and hang and iron in a much more pleasing way. I really liked this version from June At Noon and will probably add some cool pockets next time too.

Enjoy your Monday evening!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Friday, April 16, 2010

This Moment.

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

-Amanda Soule (SouleMama)

Here is mine...

Happy weekend everybody!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Lost In Space Fabric And Big Hair.

ME EARLY THIS MORNING- "Hey Colyer let's go run a comb through your hair."

COLYER- "Why?"

ME- "Because it is nice sometimes to have smooth, tidy hair."

COLYER- "All right, I knew that."

Onward went the combing, wetting down, and combing again and off the boys went to school.

With Colyer on the brain, I buckled down to finish the little brother version of this messenger bag. I have had the space fabric for months waiting to be put to work.

It was pretty quick going even with a little girl at my feet trying to get into EVERYTHING. She found the stickers so you can imagine the constellation of sticky things all over the carpet in here. No prob. I got to sew.

I can tell my technique is getting a little better and I am much neater throughout the process. I clip threads and iron and organize in a way that slightly resembles someone who knows their way around a sewing machine. I am loving it more and more each time.

Here is the finished Space Bag. I had it waiting in C's seat when I picked him up at school. (They love that!)

COLYER AFTER SCHOOL- "Awe! I knew it! You finished it really good!

ME- "Do you like it?"

COLYER- "Yeah. Hey Mom? Why do you always make us cool stuff?

ME- "Because I love you and sometimes it's nice to make things for people you love."

COLYER- "All right, I knew that."

Have great day!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Whereabouts-The Garden.

I am loving all of the garden tours and photos of planting that are popping up all over the place. I love the idea of gardening and I am always so inspired when I walk around my mother-in-law's beautiful yard. It is breathtaking. But it is always the case that somewhere during the 20 minute drive from her garden back home to mine, the inspiration is gone and all my plans of potting and digging are gone as well. Humph.

When I say "my" garden I mean my landlord's garden and that may have something to do with the lack of motivation. It isn't mine to go crazy with AND it is awfully pretty already, so it isn't like it's barren and in need of help. So even if I never get motivated, we have a very pretty yard.

Let me show you around... THE GARDEN.

Here is our first rose of the season! I pruned these bushes outside of our living room window when we moved in back in January. I did something right. Little buds all over, phew. Pretty!

These callas grow like wild-fire all over. We have them lining the sheep fence and a big bunch by our front door. (Some day I will work on my calla embroidery to finally fill the empty wall above our bed.)

And has anyone seen a lemon HEDGE before? Not me. I don't even know what to do with it. It needs to be power washed and pruned and picked or something. It is a big cob-webby, spidery mess but there are lots of little lemons on it. Could be nice.

And you can't talk about the garden without mentioning what shades it part of the day, the barn. Such a cool, sturdy, red barn. I will miss it most of all when it comes time to move on.

Well, there is so much more to see and I could go on and on but I won't. I think I will do some more tours on "Whereabouts-Wednesdays" though. Just a bit of what it is like for us out here. That could be nice too...

How are your gardens coming as Spring touches them?
You feeling inspired? Or not-so-much, as I am?
What's it gonna take to get us to pick up a shovel?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Here's What You Do...

What do you do when you are so lucky to receive a neat shelving unit FOR FREE (Thanks Jess:), that fits perfectly in your little girls room but has some slight wear and you can't seem to muster the time or energy to sand and paint it?

Oh, you get a thrill by looking in your linen closet and finding the old sheet that you begged off your Mom a while back and forgot about. Then you make the easiest panel ever by using the hem at the top of the sheet as a casing for a simple tension rod and hemming the sides and bottom in a contrast thread.

Up the panel goes and your done! I love that all the washing, pulling, tucking and wrapping that sheet went through over the years has given it a sort of sheer and dreamy weight.

The greatness of this sheet doesn't stop there though! I had been searching for months for a used, white daybed or captain style bed for Minna. I can't believe she is almost two and maybe ready to transition to her own bed for at least part of the night, my baby!

Anyway, I got impatient and instead found a cute powder blue daybed, brand new, that I could not resist. The only problem is that powder blue is not yellow, or white, or light green, or pink either. There was no blue in Minna's room before the bed so it kind of stuck out. But that perfect sheet has some sweet blue flowers and made everything o.k. See? Ties it all in, yay!

The rest of the sheet is waiting to made into Minna's big-girl bed set; throw pillows, pillowcase and hopefully make it into my first real quilt somewhere.

That sheet is going to have a long, long busy life.

What have you done around your house lately?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Cannery Row.

I have wanted to visit Monterey for almost all of my married years. That's going on 11 years folks! Many authors and photographers have been inspired by that part of our coast and I wanted to see it with my own eyes.

I got to see it!

The city itself was much more crowded and busy than I imagined because I had pictured a smaller, beach-bum type of town. We took so many wrong turns and got lost often but that didn't take away from the beauty. I love visiting places that have a distinct history. Part of Monterey's history is sardines and you can't get much more distinct than that. Our favorite stop was the aquarium and it did not disappoint, even though we took a few wrong turns there too.

Here are bits of one of Steinbeck's quotes about the area,

"Cannery Row... is a quality of light, a tone, a nostalgia, a dream."

I certainly saw that quality of light on the cheeks and hair of my children as they explored.

I felt that tone that can only be felt when you are close to where sky meets sea.

I had my nostalgic moment when we got lost (again) and I begged to go into the antique mall on the corner. There I stumbled upon the dishes I grew up with, oh that Butterfly Gold!
(Vintage Pyrex collectors and fiends would LOVE that place! Just get lost a few blocks up from Cannery Row.)

Than, many a dream came true when my biggest boy's blue eyes were inches away from a creature that is very much loved out here.

Not a bad trip if we can compare it to a famous writing, eh?