Monday, January 30, 2012

Sometimes I just can't quite seem to get it right.

My attitude was off today, and that's totally my fault. I let my patience run out, and my temper is short, and the kids seem to listen even less than usual, and I feel even worse of a mother than usual.

I have a good life, and good kids, a good marriage, and nothing disastrous is looming.  I even did some things today that I needed to get checked off the list: 

-I made it one week without a single drip of chocolate (and then celebrated with chocolate cream pie today...?)
-Got our car's title registered and now have official Idaho plates (brought both kids and decided never to do that again)
-There was snow on the ground this morning (melted by noon...but it was still pretty)
-Mailed out my charms for a charm square swap I'm participating in (many thanks to the lady at the post office)
-Took the kids to the indoor play place at the mall to work off their energy (didn't really work)
-Had a healthy lunch
-Did some exercises while the kids napped (very first baby step, so here's to that)
-Bundled up and kicked the football "to the moon" with Monkey Pants outside for a while (also good exercise)


It was a pretty productive Monday, I did things I wanted and needed to do. But still, I could've done much better.  I yell too much, I am too lazy, I get frustrated too easily, and I spend too much time sitting and wishing for what I want and not being courageous enough to get up and start making it happen.  I am too hard on myself, but I do think it's good to know I can do better...as long as I actually DO better, right?

Monday's can be tough...even for no good reason...

*One morning we found this plastic alligator stuck in the shades of our front window, so we took a picture of it.  It makes me smile.  The other picture is just our lovely patient "Hobbers" as the kids call him.  He is the best dog, and I frequently wish I had his patience for my children. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

WIP Wednesday

So, yesterday I was pretty determined to get some things checked off the list.  I have too many projects in progress and need to focus and complete something before I keep starting new things.  Good plan, right?

Well, then my kids too their nap and I wanted to watch the newest episode of The Bachelor on Hulu while I did some sewing and what did I do? I started 3 new projects.  Baby blankets using this lovely block tutorial from Blue Elephant Stitches.  I'm pretty sure I want to make 5 more quilts for myself using my scraps and this block, but no.  I have to have a finish first.  I got some more fabric yesterday that's for my Husband's quilt (this is the one I'm making while taking a class from Rachel Griffith) and so I can finally start cutting that...another start...!!

  

So, here's what I've got going on, and what I did get done this week (I'm hoping that joining in on these WIP Wednesdays will help me account for all my projects, and keep me from starting more until I make progress on or finish another one).

Completed:
Nothing :(

New Projects:
*3 Baby quilts (2 due in March, 1 due in may) using the tutorial I mentioned above.  All I got done was the cutting, and still have some more to cut for the boy one.

*Husband's quilt-fabric received and ready to cut tonight!
*Oh My Stars! quilt-along - Have fabric cut and pinned for a few of my first stars but haven't sewn them together yet, besides the fact that I'm starting way late in the game, but It's a really awesome quilt that I wanted to start making before I forgot about it.

Made Progress:
Made in Cherry quilt-along - I've got the main part sewn together and need to finish up the star points, then figure out what to use as background fabric.

No Progress:
*In-Law's quilt (still need to finish cutting the pieces)
*Patchwork quilts for my kids (2 quilts)
*Farmers Wife QA
*do.Good stitches February blocks
*Hoop Up Stitch and Swap (need to make my inspiration piece and a gallery)
*Sherbet Pips, A Walk in the Woods, and Little Apples patchwork quilt

I'm linking up for the first time to Freshly Pieced's WIP Wednesday link party!  Fingers crossed I can figure it out...!!



Monday, January 23, 2012

monday, monday...

...I became an Idaho citizen today.  I aced the eye test, and got 4 wrong on the drivers test...and is it just me or are things getting much more "techy" around those places...the test was on a touch screen computer, with pictures! i took my driver's test in California with a PENCIL AND PAPER!  I'm pretty sure it was a scantron (and we thought those were fancy).

Anyway, we're trying to get our car registered and everything, and kind of forgot to do it until our Virginia registration ran out at the end of last month and the Mr. got pulled over and informed of the problem.  embarrassing, right?! since I've never owned a car before and moved to a different state, I'm not sure what normal procedure is, but it seems like an awful lot of hassling and getting original copies and paperwork nonsense to me...

But that was only part of our awesome Monday experience.  the other part was much scarier.  Monkey Pants did NOT take a nap (it took him exactly 6 minutes to fall asleep tonight though, so that was pretty awesome), but also, while not taking their nap, these adorable children of mine somehow managed to down their dresser, and escape unscratched. I have no idea how it happened because I was in the bathroom when I heard the BOOM, followed by a brief scared cry from Lady Face, followed by Monkey Pants exclaiming, "She broked it!  She broked it!"

I didn't know what to do! Kiss them for being fine and not decapitated or severed into pieces, or be upset that the dresser we've had for all of two months got broken (that was an organizational win for me - thanks Ikea, of course).  It was so scary, so now whenever I hear the drawers open to that dresser, I run in to check on them.  One of my biggest fears is that something like that will happen with disastrous results that is easily preventable (had I not been in the bathroom at that precise moment)!  ugh...it just kills me. 

Back to fabric though, I got two great packages in the mail today.  One from Hawthorne Threads, pretty much my favorite online fabric shop for their great selection and awesome fast shipping, the other from The Fat Quarter Shop, which has a great sale section that I frequently obsess over at nights.  If you haven't visited them before, you should do so right now.  But I'm not responsible for what happens...its super fantastic!

From the Fat Quarter Shop I got some Aneela Hoey prints of the girl on the swing from her line Sherbet Pips, and some of the others, including the scarves in two colors.  I plan on using the scarves to bind my upcoming patchwork quilt that will feature all three of her fabric lines (p.s. have you seen the Christmas line she has coming out?  It's just what I've been waiting for as far as Christmas fabrics go.  It's so cute).  The other prints here are Alexander Henry's Paris Park in pink, and a blue and grey print that I'm forgetting the name of right now (bottom right, anyone know it?).  Great deal.  I am always proud of myself when I can encourage my fabric addiction at a great price (win-win!).
From Hawthorne Threads I got some odds and ends I've been oogling for a while.  Some of the butterfly and sweet spots prints from the line Betty Butterfly by Patty Solinger,  an awesome new print from the collection Washi by Rashida Coleman Hale, the bunting print from Circus Party by Michael Miller, squirrels and trees in sorbet by David Walker's Get Together line, then some Joel Dewberry herringbone in pond (must have more! so pretty), and a fun Ikat print from Sorbet by Michael Miller (and I want the rest of those colors too!)

I have a huge WIP list that I'm hoping to make progress on this week.  Too much to even make it worth listing in this post.  I'm hoping to finish sewing together the main star of my Made In Cherry quilt, and get some Farmer's Wife blocks made (I took a break from all those super tiny pieces but I think I'm ready for it again).  I also have some pieces cut for the Oh My Stars! quilt-along that I need to get to sewing before my brain can no longer connect the pieces to the directions anymore...

It started snowing here today (finally) and I'm hoping there's enough on the ground in the morning that the monkeys can get bundled up and go mess around outside for a while!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

don't eat doritos after 10:30...

...because you'll eat the entire bag (or almost) and won't be able to decide what to work on and get nothing done as a result.  well, i took some blurry instagram pictures to show you of what i've been up to latey, but that doesn't really count. 

i've been on a cutting spree lately and have cut into my collection of Aneela Hoey fabrics, turning all that i can into 5" charm squares.  i had more than i thought, so this might take me a while to use up, and fortunately some people i know are going to be having baby girls this year, so i might share some of those adorable prints and make some baby quilts too.  but i'm thinking an enourmous patchwork quilt just for me.  like this perhaps:


and then i cut into my stash of "boyish" fabrics, which i'm pleased to see more of recently, and turned those into charms also....which i'm really excited about because it turns out i have more of those than i thought.

i'm planning to make monkey pants a patchwork quilt with them that would look a little something like this next picture:



only not blurry of course.  and...i know someone who's having a baby boy in march!  so that's great for them because they'll probably get an awesome baby quilt from me.





then, i've got enough girly fabrics to follow this quilt-along and am making lady face a quilt for her birthday that will turn out like that, and look a little like this in the middle. haven't decided on the background color but it ain't going to be white!!! suggestions?


next i'd like to show you some pieces of two projects.  the first is for my in-law's and will hopefully be a one year anniversary present.  my mother-in-law  is from Virginia and i found a Virginia star block tutorial (i'll have to find the link to that for you) so i'm making a quilt entirely in Virignia stars for them.  the colors aren't ones i'd pick out for me, but i think they will like them.



then, i fell in love with the new collection, Salt Air for Moda Fabrics (don't remember who the designer is, sorry) and have been wanting to do something with half square triangles.  well thank you Jeni for this awesome tutorial!  i'm over the moon for these block's of the month that she's planned and am super excited to have an enormous quilt at the end of the year.  i didn't trim my squares and just used charms, so it'll be extra large. here's how my january block turned out:



finally, my progress with the farmer's wife quilt is going nicely.  every time i sit down to make a few blocks its interesting to see the fabrics i choose to put together, and the blocks i feel like doing.  sometimes i can get 4 or 5 done in one day, but that's when i've had lots of coordinated naps for the kids, and stayed up way too late.  i started this project the 30th of december and so far i have 41 blocks!  but that's not super exciting as there are 111 in all, and i've almost run out of ones to do that don't make me super nervous to put together!  here's a horrible picture of them together so far:

 and for good measure, a picture of my little corner of fabric.  fun fact: this used to be our dining room table in virginia, but when we moved into our rental house here in idaho it turned out to be way to big for the kitchen space but the perfect size for the end of the laundry room.  (yes that is a lawn chair)
hope life's been treating you well, it has been a good year so far for us! 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I am a work in progress...

There are sooo many things I want to do.

So many things I want to eat, read, wear, try... I know it's impossible to check even a tiny fraction of those things off before I'm dead.  Sometimes that depresses me quite a lot, and I have to refocus, or take a hot shower and remind myself that having options is a good thing.  And, let's be honest, life isn't about making as many Nutella recipe's as I can find...as sad as that is...but when I get onto that train of thought, as I did for a little while today, thinking about how I have 52 books on my shelves at home that I either haven't read, started and never finished, or read and now can't remember at all...it feels so blah...and sad that we don't have the time to do everything we want.  It reaffirms to me the importance of spending our time wisely.  Something I am not always that great at doing.

I took a look at my list of resolutions and goals for this year and realized that I don't know if I will do half of them.  Same goes for my quilting and sewing to-do list.  I feel like I often have the best intentions, but they end up going nowhere...and that's what I think I need to work on about myself.

Following through.  And then relaxing about it if I don't get something done because...I am a tightly bound bundle of nerves...and I've got to learn how to take it easy...and "go with it" even especially when "it" doesn't go my way...

So here's a "simplified" list of the things I'm working on.  Personally and Otherwise:

1. This year I need to make exercise part of my life.  My ultimate goal would be to run a race (5k perhaps?) and feel proud of my effort at the end.  This is a loaded personal brick wall for me...perhaps I'll feel like talking about it later.
2. I want to ENJOY my children while they are young.  To me this means that I have to stop saying, "just a minute" and get on the floor and play with monster trucks, look at animal flash cards, and have fun with them while they still want to be around me. My little Lady Face has almost all of her teeth...she's no baby anymore...
3. I want to follow through on being more thoughtful.  Think about doing more things for other people, especially if they're things I wouldn't choose to do but that would make the other person happy.  And I'd like to be better at remembering birthdays but I've had 6 chances at that so far this year that have all been pretty much a fail.
4. Finish 2 wedding quilts, one for my friend who got married in August, and one for my mother-in-law who got married in April.
5. Organize my photos chronologically, have them put onto cd's and print the ones I want copies of, and put them into photo binders (I'm not much of a scrapbook-er...), or into nice frames and hang them on the wall or somewhere where I can see them.
6. Embroider something(s)
7. Make my wonderful Husband a quilt (he wants all solids, and mostly earthy brownish tones and I'm kind of resisting...but I think it would make his day if I made one for him)
8. Make myself a quilt for our bed, and a bunch more to snuggle under.  I get cold all the time, and love to pile under blankets everywhere, at all times, and especially with a book.
9. Give project 365 a shot
10. Be a better blogger (as this serves as a mini-journal for me in ways...)
11. Make my kids each a zig-zag quilt for their birthdays this year in April.

So that's that.  My "New Years Resolutions".

I've got more to show that I've been doing something this week besides sleeping all the time, but you'll have to wait until tomorrow...

Here are some of my favorite pictures from this year...so far...(and yes, I discovered Instagram.  I love it)





Monday, January 2, 2012

2012...

Happy New Year!

January is a big birthday month in our family, today is my mom's birthday, yesterday was my best friend's birthday, and the 4th is my sister in law, step brother, and nephew's birthdays! And yes, you are right, their cards aren't in the mail yet.

Here's what I did when the new year arrived: The single block in the left photo is the first block I made for the Farmer's Wife Quilt Along and it made me soooo excited to do more.  So, the photo to the right is what I have so far.  11 total and I'm hoping to add more in a few minutes when the monkeys take their nap!!



So far 2012 has been exciting, in little life moment ways.  Monkey pants learned to climb halfway up the fence in our backyard, all by himself! He was super excited about this, but when he realized he couldn't stay up there forever, he got a little more worried. Last night I had a dream where he was still almost 3, but as tall as his dad...scary...

I woke up this morning with my equilibrium all funky so my lovely husband let me go back to sleep from 9-11:30, during which time he rearranged the living room and cleaned it, and cleaned under the fridge and discovered the real reason our kitchen smelled a tiny bit...um..."off"...I thought it was the 50 lb bag of garlic that I'd bought at Costco with good intentions going sour, but nope...

...it was a dead rat...or mouse...I didn't double check...

One of the things I wish for most highly in my lifetime is to live in a house where we can have ZERO interaction inside our home with rats, mice, and all other rodents, living or dead.  So far, aside for the first place we lived after being married, we have had rodent battles in every spot since.  Which I think is ridiculously disgusting.  We aren't nasty hoarders, or even close to unclean...I'm not a clean freak, but it gets done as it should.  Why do we have these rodent appearances?! Yuck.

So, yes.  That happened.

Here's some more fun for our week.  My in-law's are coming this week to stay with us for a few days.  We haven't seen them since before we moved out here to Idaho in August, so it'll be great to visit again.  There are only two things I'm having a less than pleasant time with...

I don't know when they're coming, or how long they're staying (yesterday Lovely Husband said he thought it might be Tuesday, but at breakfast this morning he said he thought it was actually Thursday...??? No word on how long they'll be here, but school starts back up on Monday the 9th so...I might have to keep them entertained?! )
We have about 850 square feet in our house.

Wish me luck!

How is your 2012 going so far?!

p.s. I have a bunch of projects and goals and the like ready to show you soon, so watch for it and tell me what you're hoping to get done this year!