Thursday, May 29, 2008

Behind the Times

This is just a quick note to say that there have been computer issues here (by which I mean that the computer completely died) and I now have restored computer usage on my work laptop and should be back to posting soon.  Unfortunately, I only know how to do what I know how to do on the computer.  Does that make sense?  The program I used to use to scale my pictures so that they would actually upload (or at least not take 1000 years to upload) is not on the laptop.  Until Mike shows me another way to do it, or gets me that program back, I am stuck "without" pictures.  And they are the fun part.  I find I am rather unmotivated to write without being able to post pics too.  So, I'll be back....... 

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Gift Sewing

Well, I sewed today.  At the expense of everything else in the house (except maybe laundry), I sewed.  I needed to finish up some tote bags for Calvin's teachers, as he is graduating from preschool (GULP) on Wednesday.  These are what I ended up with:

The basic idea for the bag with the short strap closure comes from Bend the Rules Sewing.   But I didn't really use any actual pattern.  the embroidered pockets on the outside were just a way to make them interesting and a way for Cal to contribute to the project.  We started yesterday with two simple drawings of his.  You'll notice, if you look at them together, that both bags got an equal number of flowers, tree, cloud, because that is the kind of kid he is.

After he was finished with each drawing, I taped it to the window and laid the fabric over it to trace with a fabric pencil.  Cal chose the colors and I embroidered (rather clumsily, so like all of my projects: don't look too close) over his lines.

I have to say, I will be doing a gazillion of these kinds of things for gifts from now on!  Cal had so much fun watching his picture transform and it adds something so personal.  I already have plans all over the place..... pillows, apron pockets, bath mats, place mats.... oh, I could go on! And, while I have no idea whether Calvin's teachers will actually use these bags, I do know they will think of Calvin and smile each time they see that picture.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Mommy's Little Helper

If only I could get her to do something other than roll around in it....

Thursday, May 8, 2008


Tate, at the patio door tonight, dangling a long worm:   He's kinda sandy.

Random New Skills

Well, I've been having computer troubles.  Between that and forgetting my camera on a very important excursion to my dearest friends' place, I haven't had a great deal of ability or motivation to post.  We had a lovely weather day earlier this week though and enjoyed an afternoon outside with some friends.  And, boy oh boy, these kids never cease to amaze me.  This, right here, is Tate's first time outright writing his name.  He wrote it upside down (by which I mean that he was writing from above the tops of the letters) and they are a complete mirror image.  He had no prompting and I have never practiced letters with him.  He approaches things SO differently than his big brother.  Calvin was always "show me, show me" a million times before he would do something himself and is (still) always wanting it just so.  Tate, as typical, just pulled this out of nowhere.  Independent,  and stubbornly NOT wanting to learn the "right" way to do the letters from his big brother.

And Calvin had a surprise for me that day too.  He has randomly learned how to drop kick a soccer ball.  Now, it's not that I think this is necessarily the most difficult skill ever.  But I am just always impressed at his natural physical ability with all things round.  We don't have either of them in any kind of organized sport (yet) and the only lessons I have felt inclined to pay for are swimming.  But here he is, and it just makes me smile.

Ellerie is here trying to show off her new found "skills" as well.  She has actually made some pretty good attempts at going UP the slide.  I wonder who she saw doing that?  But I really put in the picture to show off her pants.  They are, by far, the nicest and cutest pants I have made for her.  I cut them out of a BEAUTIFUL pair of plus sized J Jill pants that my mother found at a thrift store.  They are a lovely high quality fabric.  I made use of the already cuffed hems and put some patch pockets on the bum with some of the lining/hidden pocket fabric.  I always seem to love those fabrics and really liked seeing them on the outside!

Mmmmm...  a strawberry and cheese cracker picnic with friends.  No new skills here, but there are some old ones that are always fun to hone. 

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Girls' Night Out Treasures

Last night I had a girls' night out with my sister-in-law.  It was a lovely time away from the evening chaos with the kids and, while they enjoyed building and playing with Daddy, I got to eat food that I did not prepare and go thrifting.  I was very excited to find a couple of big bins of vintage patterns at my local SA.  In all the times I have frequented their establishment, I have never seen patterns there.  These two gems were 39 cents apiece.  Great classic little girls patterns in big enough sizes that I am hoping to actually have time to sew by the time they would be useful for Ellerie!

I love the little hooded Ts and dresses here.

Then I found these pretty dishes.  Four small plates, Four wide bowls and one larger serving-type bowl.  I didn't really have a reason in mind for buying them other than just thinking they were pretty and I know I don't have space for them, but I couldn't resist.  I imagined myself sitting with a friend eating some decadent chocolate dessert from the plates, using the good silver, dabbing at my mouth with a beautiful cloth napkin.  You know, something like that.  But the boys wanted to use them RIGHT AWAY and I had enough trouble getting them to wait for the dishes to be washed.

I indulged them at lunch though and they got to use the fancy new plates and anyone who knows me knows that THIS is the farthest cry from what I would have EVER served on these plates!

Even the site of the picture now is turning my stomach.  A hot dog was bad enough, but MUSTARD.  They're lucky I didn't throw the plates away after that.