Thursday, December 29, 2011

Today?

I'm not quite sure what day it is, though the phone tells me it's Thursday...um...what happened to Tuesday?  And Wednesday?  I just don't know.

Anywho.  Today has been moderately productive so far!  I have decided on some fabrics for my Farmer's Wife Quilt, which I'm excited to start, but freaked out at the same time because if each block finishes at 6" those are some reallytinypieces I get to cut out and sew tonight!!








Also, My mother-in-law is coming to visit next week (which will also be NEXT YEAR!!), so I thought I'd make up a lasagna or two!  And I did.  And I may have over-seasoned them.  We'll see.

As I'm about halfway through the layering of noodles, oodles of cheese, and sauce, I remember...Isn't my mother-in-law on the ATKINS DIET?!

So, I maybe just made two enormous lasagnas for us....yay?!

Hopefully I can have a win with the farmer's wife tonight on our first date!! (yes.  I am lame.)

Wish me luck!!

What are you working on tonight?

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Is it warmer yet?

Goodness sakes it's cold here.  And my kiddos are going bonkers.  Husband is on a nice lengthy break from school also, and so far we are still all alive...we'll see how long that lasts.  He's been great while losing his mind at home all day long, so I sent him to the movies tonight.   He deserves the break. 

I'm from California.  The Bay Area to be precise, and I'm missing it.  I'm always cold here, and as a group, we have developed too much of a reliance on movies to pass the day.  Sleeping in until 8am most days also helps, but seeing as we've also been staying up until way to late, so we still aren't getting much sleep (smart right?), and not getting out very much.   I got a collection of Hitchcock DVD's for Christmas so that's what we've been staying up watching...which doesn't help me sleep either.

Now that Christmas is over, and it's really over here at our place (the Lowe's Christmas tree we bought a couple weeks ago was past dead on the 23rd so we took it down on the 26th along with the rest of our decorations), we are trying to figure out what to do with ourselves...Mr. and I have read all three of the Hunger Games books, and compared opinions on the ending, which I thought was a little bit....eh....okay.  Did you read the series?  What did you think? What should we read next?

We have played Mario Kart, and tried to teach Monkey Pants to drive (he likes to make whoever he's driving "dance"...which is cute, right?).  I am trying to finish my Drunkard's Path Quilt before the new year, so by Saturday. Pictures to come soon.  The lighting in this house is terrible for pictures. 



Also, I got my Farmer's Wife Quilt book in the mail today and am hoping to start on that tonight or tomorrow.  There's a goal of getting 56 blocks (to be caught up with the rest of the flickr group  working on this project) by around February so I have my work cut out for me there.


 I realized on Christmas Eve that Lady Face doesn't have a stocking!!  So I used mine to make a template for hers and made this green wonder to the left in no time at all.  Not super awesome, but I plan on making a better one, and adding some more things to this one to pretty it up...






I'm also trying to compile my personal, creative, and family goals for the new year.  I like to have something to work towards so I can gauge my progress as the year goes on.  I like thinking back on how much has happened in the year that's ending and figuring out what I want to do better, or more or less of, and try to help our family keep going in the right direction.  I'm still working on this so I'll probably share this with y'all next week.

 Hope you had a Merry Christmas (or a great holiday that you do celebrate if it's not Christmas), and have a happy and safe New Year!
(This is the family picture we put together in four minutes at the request of one of the Grandma's-Lady Face and Hobbes look so thrilled!)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas so far...

We decorated last Friday and got a tree. Our dog, Hobbes, likes to sleep under, no, IN the tree. Perhaps to be safe or camouflaged from the kids?

Here are my favorite decorations.

(yes we have a cow tree topper. Story later)

WIP's

Get ready for some poorly lit pictures!

These will become...in no particular order (you can make a game of it and guess!!):

Placemats
A pillowcase
Drunkards path lap quilt
Christmas something
Wedding quilt
Baby quilt
A bag for Monkey Pants to put all his cars and tractors in

And THAT is what I'm working on. I'd love to have them all finished by the end of the year which may happen for all but the wedding quilt-in which case I'm hoping to have the fabric and a plan and call that good.

What are you getting done?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

back to real life...

Be warned.  There are lots of pictures in this post.

We are back from vacation, and came home with Ikea furniture to assemble, TONS of laundry to do and put away, the Mr. has school and presentations and finals next week...along with the regular duties of everyday.

But we had SUCH a great trip.  LOVE IT!  We were able to have family from Utah, Washington, and us from Idaho, all together.  It was an awesome thanksgiving.  My favorite on record!  I don't even know where to begin we were so exhausted every day.

Here are some of the things we did while we were there:

In-N-Out (4 or 5 times!)

We were able to get a private tour of the house my step-dad grew up in, which is now a park in Hayward, and it was amazing to hear all the stories, and see the awesome wallpaper and details of the old house.  After the tour we took family pictures on the steps! This is one of the "Uncle" photos.

Monkey pants slept through Thanksgiving dinner...and almost every meal.  Maybe it was the time change? or the pure awesomeness of this trip just wore him out. 

and of course we cooked! and tasted...! By the way, i highly recommend chocolate whipping cream if you can find it.  Awesome stuff I hadn't seen before.
We got to visit the house I grew up in to cut the grass and rake the leaves. 
She tried to help us vacuum!
Lady Face fell asleep at Ikea, which was really helpful to get things done there, but it didn't last very long...
The best part was spending time with all of my family in one place.  Heaven!
We really didn't want to leave...on the drive home Monkey Pants had decided that we were driving to grandma's house...even though we were leaving. 

I can't even remember how much we did.  It was a lot. We were asleep before we hit the pillow just about every night.  It was awesome. 

Today i have one more bookshelf to put together before I can finish trimming and assembling my blocks and quilt top for the Drunkard's Path Quilt-Along that I am soooo behind on. I'm hoping to finish the top by the link up deadline of December 5th. 

I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving, this is my favorite time of the year!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

One down and vacation on the mind...

We are going to grandma's (my mom's) house on Friday! It's all the kids can talk about and it's all I can think about. It's been a busy year and it feels like we haven't had a chance to relax in a while.

I'm excited for grandparents to distract my children so I don't have to be "on" ALL day long (does that sound awful?). Also, the whole family will be there, which is particularly exciting for me as we haven't met the two newest editions to the family and most of the family hasn't met Lady Face.

We are driving from Idaho to California and might be bringing the dog. We will stop at the first In-N-Out we come to and every one after. I will eat an entire Chocolate Rum Cake from Prolific Oven in Palo Alto and delight in the familiar places I haven't seen since before Lady Face was born...not to mention friends, family, and Thanksgiving.

Maybe some shopping? Yes please.

But.....it's Tuesday. Before we leave at 4am (yeah right) Friday morning I have a long to do list. Baking, cleaning, packing, sewing and I'm about ready to just sit on the couch and let my kids watch Cars 2 over and over again and just fast forward to Friday.

On a totally different note, I finished quilting the blue Ohio Stars quilt and it's a great snuggler but not the greatest looker. I LOVE the binding. It's my favorite part.

I learned a lot making it. We will leave it at that. However it does get bonus points because Monkey pants likes it. He has a Linus type attachment to a blue blanket and is very "selective" about what blanket can keep him warm. When I finished this one he wanted to snuggle under it! WIN.

I'm also desperately behind on the drunkards path quilt along but have finally gotten some of my squares sewn and am hoping to get them all done and trimmed before we go as I'd love to finish it by the 28th to link it up with everyone else's.

Don't let them fool you, either. Sewing curves IS scary. But now, I can do it! And it's fun. I like it.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Great and not so great

Today hasn't been the best. It was a hard one. I took some NyQuil last night to help me sleep and get rid of the last bits of my cough that had been popping up at night.

Well, we got a new Netflix DVD in the mail so when the kids finally went to sleep the Mr. and I stayed up too late watching Sherlock Holmes. Fun, but had I known what today held I would've gone to bed.

Anyway, so I woke up in kind of a NyQuil-haze-brain-cloud and went to take a shower to jump start my face (showers are a wonderful creation). SURPRISE! cold.

Turns out our water heater isn't heating anymore. Since we are renting, we can't just go fix it ourselves, so the day is then spent with a shadow of anticipation for the repair man. He pushed the reset button.

Why didn't we think of that?! I'll tell you why. Doesn't. Work. Now we have 3 minutes of a warm bath but have been swapped cold water for rusty brown water. Not so great. That right there cancels out the 3 minutes of warm.

So there's that. And here's what else. I need two things (well 3 actually) to be a nice lady, a decent mother, and a kind wife. First: sleep. I've never been able to stay up late without sleeping in later and I can't run on 6 hours of sleep like most people. I make bad choices when I haven't had enough sleep and it usually involves way too much food and self loathing. I need at least 7 to return to neutral. 8+ is even better. Then I'll be nice to you!

Second: A long hot shower. Very long. Till the hot runs out long. And that cannot be 3 minutes. That is not enough time to think all the thoughts and relax. Not at all (the third is running/exercise and I haven't figured out/keep making excuses for why that hasn't been fit into my routine yet).

We had playgroup today and I was not too pleased with some of monkey pants' choices, though I think he inherited his sleep needs from me and frequently has a funky day if he doesn't get enough sleep. But it led me to wonder those thoughts of self doubt, what am I not doing to help him to listen, share, and respect other children? How many times do I have to scream it before it's understood? Don't worry, these are all fleeting thoughts brought on by the sleepiness and, fortunately, I can recognize that. He's a great boy, we all have our off days, but let's do them on different days.

We went to Costco to get water bottles and lunch in the process (a Costco hot dog can fix many a problem I tell you what). Matthew loves the "pink cups" as much as I do so I got one for the three of us to share. We were also there to get a quick lunch to take to Mr. Lady Face who had a break in between classes. Well today we were THAT family you see sometimes that is careless and not paying attention, causing traffic jams with those boat-carts, blocks the access to the straws and DROPS THE PINK CUP. Minus several thousand points for style right there.

I did get the kids to take naps at the same time which had almost the same psychological benefit of the sleep I missed. I decided to do some yoga. 20 mins into my first real session in months and the repair man shows up. Yay...but why now!!

And you know the rest if that story. Hopefully we can get it fixes or replaced so I can sit in my shower and go over all this one last time and let it be over.

Oh yeah. This post is titled with GREAT in it. And I did have a great moment! Mail! It was a good mail day. New issue of Real Simple followed by two packages of fabric. Two charm squares of Just Wing It for a drunkards path quilt along that I'm obscenely late to begin (check out the blogs needle and spatula and ocd:obsessive crafting disorder), and four kona solids that were only $3.50 per yard!

So that was the awesome part. Not a total loss right?!

And bonus points to you stranger, for getting to the bottom of this crazy rant.

Here are some pics of the kids enjoying the first snowfall this past weekend in our yard. Plus Lady Face attacking the dog this afternoon pretending to be a scary monster. Cute.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Pumpkin muffins

So I wanted to feel productive today but that didn't really happen. What did happen was this recipe for pumpkin muffins that looked easy enough to make while adding a dash of pride to my day from creating SOMETHING.

Here's the link to the recipe

http://sweet-verbena.blogspot.com/2011/08/pumpkin-muffins.html

I'm sorry it's not in a better form. But there it is.

Two ingredients, yellow cake mix and one 15 oz can of pumpkin. I added about 3 tsp of pumpkin pie spice.

YUMMY! turned out so good and even monkey pants, the boy that scoffs at all pastry like anythings, wanted another bite of "pumpkin cake".

Try it. But make sure you have someone to give the rest to...I'm not responsible for any guilt felt over making and possibly devouring something so delish.

P.S. Definitely do not add cream cheese frosting...(do it)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Afraid of...

Machine quilting! It terrifies me. Sooooooo much room for mistakes. It's like the icing on the cake. So what if you made the yummiest cake in the world. If it looks like crap nobody's going to eat it.

That's the pressure I feel when I go to quilt a quilt on my own machine on my own...scary. And seeing how I am quilting a quilt right now that falls into the "look how much I learned making this!" category...the quilting isn't going that well.

So it is NOT getting gifted. It will live on the couch hopefully crumpled up around somebody that is too cozy to care what it looks like.

Included is a nasty picture of my make it work workspace that is next to the laundry. What you can't see, and what I forgot were even in there, are the two goldfish encrusted car seats right behind the table that need a cleaning...makes me want to scream "why does everything have to be so clean?!" (is that from something? Movie maybe?)

Oh the woes of a Monday...

Friday, November 4, 2011

Lady Face

Lady Face is what we affectionately nicknamed our daughter. She is 19 months old and a firecracker like I've never seen. I named the blog after her because I'm not sharp enough to come up with anything original. And I hope someday she'll think her mom was somewhat clever and I also hope this will serve as some kind of log of how I spend some of my time, what I've made, and some of our family activities too.

I have to take her to the doctor today. A new doctor.
I'm not looking forward to 3pm.
I'm doing everything I can think of to pretend it's not happening.

And to make a good first impression, Lady Face, with the help of her 2 1/2 year old brother Monkey Pants, ran her nose into the ledge of the window and now appears to have a bloody nose all the time, when it's really just a badly places scrape...great right!

Lady Face can also scream bloody murder at the drop of a hat. Or when anyone tries to get her to do anything she doesn't want to do (is this a girl thing?).

I think I've become more afraid of the doctors office since having Lady Face...

But her smile, her laugh, and the silly yellow boots she insists on wearing ALL DAY make it so worth it to be her mom.

(but can someone please make it 4pm already!!)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Finish!

Wowee. We have been sick for most of October and have spent these first two days of November getting better. So I'm overly thrilled that Cars 2 is out on DVD because I don't think I could sit through watching Tangled one more time...!

All this down time did give me the chance to get my patchwork quilt finished and bound and I'm happy to report that feeling in my fingers has returned! It's going to be a while before I do any more hand quilting.

Again I apologize for the iPhone pictures. We will probably be getting a technology update after Thanksgiving so stay tuned for some upgrades! Yay.

Mr. Lady Face is making tacos for dinner tonight, yum!

Anyway. Here are the few details I have about this quilt. I bought the fabric before I became as obsessed with quilts and sewing and fabric as I am now, so I don't really know what all of it is...at all. Also, this quilt suffers some wonkiness because I started it in Virginia and we moved to Idaho and I picked it up again when we got here. But I love it! It's big enough to go on our queen bed but not full sized so I snuggle with it on the couch, we put it on the floor and the monsters run around on it, it's great.

And there's another picture from our Halloween festivities-in between being sick we made it to the best pumpkin patch I've ever been to! I love this time of year!

Monday, October 17, 2011

What I'm working on...

Things haven't moved as fast as I'd hoped, but such is life. If it's not one thing it's another, right?

I'm almost done hand quilting my queen size patchwork quilt (never again will I do that...or at least not for a long time!), but progress has been slow. Whenever I snuggle under it and start getting it done I seem to fall asleep! I hope I can get it done in the next couple of days so it can be used and displayed and snuggled without me worrying about it.

I am also close to done with a quilt top that I got fabric for last year...I'm hoping to get it done before it hits it's year mark! It's an Ohio Stars pattern that I changed a little bit by switching where the color value was and using two prints instead of two solids.

And please forgive the iPhone photos! Not the best, but I'm hopeful that better technology will be in our future!

Also on my list of next projects is:

Pumpkin coasters (maybe placemats too)
Zig zag quilt
Cars and trucks quilt for Thing One
Raw edge circles quilt
Various Christmas presents...!
Thing One's Halloween costume (cow)
A wedding gift quilt

That's just the short list!

I will leave you with a picture from this weekend. We have been trying to be more creative with Thing One (2 1/2) and Thing Two (1 1/2) and this is what THEY came up with on Sunday!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

And so it begins...

...my entry into the blog world has begun.

I was inspired today by a "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" metaphor that went a bit like this: we should not lose ourselves in waiting for the golden ticket so much that we forget the joy of a simple chocolate bar. The things that mean the most are usually those little moments of joy, small triumphs and accomplishments, struggles gotten over that are a big deal to us...thats what makes a life.

What you'll be hearing about here:
I am working on several quilts and some baby gifts, trying to be a little more fun and educational with my children (18mos. and two and a half), while trying to start running again, and getting used to our new life here in Idaho...among other things.

Thanks for following along! I hope you will come back again!