Tuesday, April 17, 2012

WIP Wednesday - Penny Candy

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Penny Candy WIP

First off -- I am pleased to report that things around here are MUCH BETTER than they were a week or so ago. :)  I have to thank a rain storm that came through, and my mom who sent my husband home so that he could help get everything done.  The living room is painted, and Steiger's room... *phew*  Scarlet's room is next; I'm gonna have to figure that one out.

I've been making progress on my "Just 3" goals for the month.

I got the paper versions of "French Kisses" ready to send to the printers. :)  (One goal done)

It was really slow going (due to the reasons mentioned before), but I also got most of the top for pattern #2 done.  It's a Jelly Roll or Layer cake pattern (this is the Jelly Roll version here), and just needs borders.
Steiger helped me hold it in the wind. :)  (Thank you Steiger).

The featured fabric is Vintage Modern by Bonnie & Camille.

Penny Candy

These little blocks are really fun to make; they come together like a puzzle... I'm still working on the baby size version with my very small collection of Denyse Schmidt prints.  I'm making a rainbow and adding it to the My Precious Quilt a Long my friend Kelly is hosting. :)

"Penny Candy" baby blocks

I contacted a local photographer to trade her pictures for quilts to use in her business (like this kind of idea) - so I really need to get cracking on that!

Scarlet and Steiger are growing too fast!

the little loves


And my PSA for the day -- my local quilt shop, The Quilt Corral, has the entire line of Echo by Lotta Jansdotter in stock.  A couple friends had me pick up a fat quarter bundle for them, and my LQS said they'd take phone orders if any one else wants some.  They'll cut bundles or have yardage -- I know Echo is hard to find... so if you need some, give them a call... 



Linking to Fabric Tuesday and WIP Wednesday!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Fresh Poppy Design

And PSA #2 -- My real life friend Pam is having a giveaway for what looks like a great book!
Go congratulate her on 5 bloggy years, and enter to win!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Steiger turns three today.

Pin It Steiger loves copy

They aren't lying when they say it goes fast.

Now a little more about you:

You can turn anything in to a gun or a light saber, or both. (Yesterday we searched all over the front lawn for just the right light saber stick, for example).

You make your sister laugh more than any one else can.

You want Mommy and Daddy to tell you stories at rest time and bed time.  Usually about Star Wars, but sometimes about things that happen in your daily life.

You like Elli to sleep on the floor by you at night.

Yes, you sleep on a mat on the floor right now -- at least for another couple days until we paint your newly-walled in room.

You use the right words for things, and notice everything.  When you were not yet 2 1/2 for example, we drove by a harvester moving between fields.  You explained to me, "That's a harvester.  It has tracks on it.  It doesn't have a header."  Heavy machinery is not just a tractor to you -- it's a "skid steer" or a "cement mixer," or a "dump truck" or a "bank out," or a "John Deere tractor," or a "big Steiger tractor," etc.  I would expect no less though from a farm boy named after said tractor.  Daddy loves it best when you say "cement mixer."

You conjugate your verbs beautifully... makes me think maybe you were listening to class in utero. ;)

You're a constant running commentator to your mama, but more quiet around other people.

You don't like it when Mom and Dad argue, and tell us, "Come on People."  It usually makes us laugh.

You love to visit your grandparents and even talk to them on the phone.  You're Grandma Cathy's "Buddy Boy," and Grandpa Bill's "Mighty Pickle."

You like to watch the "singers" on American Idol and other such shows and dance with your mommy while they sing.  (Mommy relishes all of it).

You constantly are negotiating for "two more minutes."  I just factor it in instead of arguing.

You especially use this tactic when playing Curious George games on the computer.

You get really excited when you see "Super Letters" and can readily identify X, O, and a few more in context.

You're successfully wearing underwear at home now (this is a big thank you from me Buddy).

We got here by putting your little toilet in front of Star Wars and letting you watch.  I'm OK with that.  You really love watching Star Wars Clone Wars.

You know how to put your movies on without any help; this comes in very handy when I need to get Scarlet down for a nap.

You're sweet, but can be VERY strong-willed and stubborn.  Getting you to try new foods is a major challenge -- you DO eat cheeseburgers, hot dogs and "spicy" hot dogs, peanut butter and jelly, avocado, applesauce (with cheater veggies mixed in), french toast, and a few other things... but if you're reading this Steiger, Mama would love you to branch out a bit... but no pressure, because I know that will just make this take even longer.

OK, you're actually really sweet.

 You have named your bears Big Papa Bear, Mama Bear, Baby Bear, Little Tiny Bear, Big Bear, and
Sugar Diaper.

You laugh boisterously, with gales of giggles and squeals.  You love being chased, and tickled, and teased.

You like building forts and "houses" with things like Elli's cage, the couch cushions, quilts, and whatever else you can find.

You use all the words your mama teaches you, and stop to think how to use them correctly.  You do this without any coaching or prompting from me.

You say "please," "thank you," and "no thank you" with very few reminders.

You tell me how you feel with those words: "I'm just frustrated Mom."  "I'm feeling sad right now; I need a snuggle."  "I'm really mad at you because you put me in time out."  "I'm so excited to go with you!"

I'm hoping your future wife will thank me for this emotional intelligence down the road.

You teach your sister about the things you're using and explain them to her.  You help me make sure that little things are away from her, and give her something to play with if she takes your toys.

You know Steiger -- my favorite thing about being a mom has been seeing a well loved little soul grow and develop.  You are a delight to my heart daily, and even though your entry in to the world wasn't easy, your time spent in it has been perfect.  I love sharing my days with you.  I told you the other day, "I love being your mama Steiger."  You replied, "I love being your son."

♥ ♥ ♥

Monday, April 9, 2012

Reality Check.

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I sat down to write this post, and my mind went completely blank.
So blank in fact that this was all I could think of to write.

Wanna see a glimpse in to my life today?

Though I have to warn you, if chaos and clutter stress you out, you might want to stop reading.

the cans of paint and primer waiting
On Saturday, we had a wall closed in and a door redone in order to give Steiger and Scarlet each a bedroom (behind that new drywall is what used to be my sewing area, the sewing area has now moved in to what used to house a dining room table).

The hutch that holds the fabric that used to be in that hallway had to be emptied and moved, but Jay has said he's only moving that fabric once (he acts like there's a lot of it or something???), and so it is still sitting on the coffee table (see top photo).
The living room furniture has all been scrunched together, my various projects in different stages have been piled together behind the couch, and the officey type stuff has been added to the pile.  Steiger's dresser is right here, and there are Easter buckets and a chair near where I'm standing with the camera.

This is the quilt destined for our bed, sitting on the couch, that has the binding one quarter of the way stitched down.  King-size quilt + hand-sewn binding + carpal tunnel fingers do not a quick stitching job make.

This is the pile of what-nots that are sitting in the area of the kitchen that used to have our dining room table, that came from Steiger's room, or being stored under his loft bed.  (I'm hoping I can find a small drop-leaf table for this spot).

All this with the official kick off of Spring work (read: hubby working 12+ hour days every day in order to get the field work done in order to get the rice planted).

But at least the kids had a Happy Easter.  ♥ ♥


Erika, a fellow mommy/quilty blogger, tagged me a while back for a little questionnaire. 
I've decided that I'm going to take the time to fill it out this morning.

How big is your fabric stash? (i.e., how many boxes, bins or pounds?  You determine the measurement)  
Does "too big" count as an answer?  It's one hutch, four totes, and random assorted shoe-box sized project boxes big.  You can see most of it in the top picture, strewn out of its normal hutchy home.

Are you an early bird or night owl?
Night owl for sure.  And I like to sleep in late too... and I totally consider 8 am late these days.

Do you speak any other languages?  If not what other language do you wish you knew?
I can read Spanish and understand it if people are speaking slowly, and I can get around in basic Mandarin thanks to the 2001-2002 school year I spent teaching abroad at a small international school in Taipei, Taiwan.  I actually "picked up" Chinese, and it was easier for me to learn that crazy tonal language than to figure out directions... if that tells you anything about how my brain works and how daft I am when it comes to directions.

What store do you have a hard time leaving empty-handed (online or bricks and sticks)?
Costco.  Though thanks to my rebate checks, I actually left the store WITH money the other day (and then took it to another store to buy Steiger's birthday present).  But still, it was a happy occasion. Other than that, fabric.com, burgundybuttons.com, SewLoveFabrics on etsy, and fatquartershop.com (if they have a coupon) fill my mailbox with happiness.

What are your favorite blogs to read?
See my list!  Look over on the right!

What is your favorite book or movie?
Harry Potter.  One through Seven plus Seven part 2.  J.K. Rowling is a genius in my opinion.  I like lots of other books, but these are my favorites.

Where do you sew?
In what used to be my dining room.  We have an open floor plan house, so I can see the kiddos and my sewing machine at the same time (though I can't yet sew when Scarlet is awake).  Jay is right next to me on the computer, playing his MMORPG's (aren't we romantic?  and when I say right next to me, I mean "right" next to me -- I have to tap his chair in order for him to swing it to the left so I can get by).

When did you make your first quilt?
I started my first quilt when I was pregnant with Steiger, then got too big to sit at the sewing machine, and then made Jay a quilt a few months after Steiger was born.  You can see it here. Hideous quilt (in my opinion), but the hubs loves it.

How many hours per week (per day?) do you spend on Pinterest?  What, if anything have you made/acquired/acted on that you pinned?
Not that many, though I am currently trying to gather ideas for redoing my kiddo's rooms.  I find it funny though that my raspberry cream cheese coffee cake is one of my most pinned items, even though I'm a quilty blog. :)  Though we did make it yesterday morning, and it IS quite good.

What’s your favorite quilting tip? 
Make what you love.
Learn and try new things.
Do good work, but don't get bogged down in perfectionism.
Oh, and nest your seams.

Did you make a New Years resolution? Have you kept it? 
Did I?  I can't remember honestly.  But I probably was smart enough not to make one this year, beings that I don't sleep through the night yet.

I've had a few people ask me "How do you do it?" ("It" referring to quilting with a baby and a toddler)...

1) Make it a priority -- this means that the house sometimes looks like the pictures you see featured on my blog today
2) Add 1 day to 1 month to 1 year (or more) to whatever time you expect it to be done by.
3) Have a sewing area always set up, even if that means you don't have a dining room table.

And that my friends, is my reality check for the day.
If you're thinking there's anything glamorous about quilting with two small children, well, I suppose you've been enlightened.  
(And if there's someone out there who does do it well, I don't want to know). ;)

Now back to blowing some bubbles with Steiger (who turns three tomorrow!!!).

Because mental health matters too!

Friday, April 6, 2012

ACK! they're cute!

Pin It You can still link up to the "Just 3" goals for April!  It'll be open until Sunday I believe... it's been fun seeing your goals!

So many of us waited so long to sew with these cute little seedlings from Flea Market Fancy.

It felt really good cutting in to my own and making something. :)

I started on my first of my "Just 3" goals the past couple nights.  I haven't had a lot of time to sew, but I got a few blocks for the baby size of my next pattern, "Penny Candy" done.

"Penny Candy" baby blocks

Really though -- these blocks are so happy and fun for me to piece, and I love using up the new flea market fancy bits, with some katie jump rope.

My friend Kelly has started a new quilt along called "My Precious" Quilt Along.  I'm going to add this to the group.



Today being Good Friday has me highly contemplative... not just because of its Christian story, but because Steiger was born three Good Fridays ago, in the operating room after 26 hours of labor... This is just a big week of remembering for me.  First today, then Scarlet will be six months old tomorrow, then on April 8 not only is it Easter, but Jay asked me to marry him six years ago... Steiger turns three on Tuesday (!!!).  This mama's heart is full right now.  I suppose you can be expecting a sentimental post or two from me in the next week. ;)

All that and we're remodeling to give Steiger a bedroom.  Tomorrow the contractor will be putting in a wall and moving the door, and Scarlet will be moving in to Steiger's old room (and maybe out of our room if I can bear for her to be that far away).  

I have two rooms to re-decorate (and decorating is not my strongest suit), but I'm looking forward to it!  (and just need to recruit some painters). ;)

Blessings of New Life and Hope to all of you this weekend...

I love my babies
they look so serious here, but I just loved how he was holding her while watching cartoons, and she was so relaxed... ♥

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Just Three for April - Linky time!

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Just 3 button

I need some structure.  Pretty seriously.

Scarlet, as adorable as she is, doesn't sleep through the night yet (though in all fairness, I'm OK with that, because I kind of like our quiet time together, and do my best quilt brainstorms then)...

Steiger has dropped his naps and I've taken to just plopping him on the couch with a movie for some quiet time after I get Scarlet down for her nap, and letting him crash if he wants to.  And you moms all know what happens -- yep, when he falls asleep, Scarlet, notorious little cat-napper that she is, wakes up.

But -- every now and then, little napping fairies do indeed visit my house.  And both my children sleep at once.  And when they do, I need some structure, because otherwise I stare at the computer browsing fabric sites and filling my virutal cart, wiping drool from my chin, chatting on facebook not sure where to begin.

So I'm giving myself three goals.
Each month, I will write down three goals, and at the end of the month, I will reflect, report, and re-evaluate for the next month.

Yep, this is what I've decided to.

For April -- my goals are:

1) Finish Pattern #2 quilt, tentatively named "Penny Candy" and get it published, as well as getting paper patterns for French Kisses done.

I have more sashing fabric coming this week for the full-sized version (which is almost done!)... and I've pulled fabrics to test the baby version.

had to do a rainbow

2) Complete one old WIP... (I'm thinking it will be one of these two)

Divas quilt WIP

(you see how small Steiger is in this picture -- he's going to be three next week, so this one needs to be finished up soon)

or this one:

My Nicey Jane FQ quilt along top

3) Make a happy sewing project -- just something pretty that I like.

Your turn!

- only three things
- need to be attainable goals
- Link back here (there's a button on the side that I hope works!)

Since this is my WIP report -- I'm linking to Lee's!
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
OK -- Now you Link up!  (You've got a couple days to do it)
(Sheesh -- more new technology -- I hope this works too!)

Sunday, April 1, 2012

little pink quilt finished and swapped

Pin It I have a friend who crochets hats.  Very cute hats.

And even though she knows how to make quilts, and I (used to) know how to crochet, we figured a little swap was better for both of us.
pink baby quilt

Her baby girl was turning one; I asked her what palette she liked, and she linked me to this one.

I had some charm squares from Hello Luscious by Basic Grey, and some old Blush fat quarters.  I added some Porcelain Bella solid and put together this little number.

Jen tells me that her little Miss loved it.

Surprise!Happy Birthday sweet girl!

And Scarlet loves her little hat.
Scarlet's new hat

(Steiger got a hat too, but he is becoming increasingly difficult to capture on camera, but he likes to put it over the front of his face and tell me he's getting bad guys.)

If you are interested in a happy little crocheted hat (and she does other stuff too), go see her at Jenny Pancakes.  She does custom orders, and is quick too!

(and I have to thank Jen for snapping some pictures for me because I finished this after midnight the night before I mailed it -- she's a natural quilty photographer I'd say!)

(And in flickr, many of you have asked for a tutorial on this... I'll add it to the list, but it's really quite easy to do, and requires no paper piecing). ;)

and P.S. --- look at what has started happening at our house...


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