Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Look what I have!!!

Thank you Anna!!! I'll be trying this out as soon as I get something basted!

WIP Wednesday

I tried out a few new things this week, and took a couple pictures too!  I have much more that is "in progress" and I even cleaned up my sewing space (and then messed it up picking fabric for the patchwork prism QAL).

First I wanted to share some non-sewing business with you.  I've been trying to hit the gym frequently to get rid of some "extra stuff" I'm carrying around and went with a friend on Monday.  This was new for me.

I don't really like working out around or with people I know.  I'd rather sweat like a fool and look like one around perfect strangers.  But, my friend had invited me to a class, so I laced up my Asics and went.  And I went to the wrong the wrong room... It was an aerobics type class and wasn't super challenging except for the abs part (but holy cow have I been feeling it since).

Here's the thing though,  I am a 5' 10" uncoordinated mess when it comes to having "moves"... I look like a total loser in a room full of mirrored walls, and have always been shy and the fact that I stayed and did the workout was an accomplishment for me.  So yay!  There's that.

In more interesting news, I tried Hexagons!  It was easy!  And fun!  I was prompted to make these because I joined a hexagon swap.  I figured I probably wouldn't give it a try unless I had a reason to make them and this was it.  I followed my friend Katie's tutorial and it was wonderful.  I don't use thimbles though and found my fingers were ok (so far - granted I've only made about 30...I made some more last night after I took this picture)

Then, I made these two blocks with fabrics from my scrap box for Katherine in one of the bee's that I just got a spot in.  She's making this quilt as a gift and I think it's going to look really wonderful!

And I picked out fabric for the Patchwork Prism QAL.  If you haven't heard about this yet you should check it out.  It's an amazing free pattern from Anna Maria Horner and there are some truly amazing prizes (like a new Janome sewing machine!!), so I'm all over this.  It's being hosted by Bianca who is amazing, and you don't want to miss it.  Seriously. 

It's much more color theory than I'm used to wrapping my head around so I kept this post from Bianca open while I pulled my fabrics (all from my stash so far) and I really like the way they look together.  I want to add a yellow and perhaps another brown and another red.  What do you think? Anything you would add or take out?

I really like looking at these and haven't moved them off the table yet.

I'm also working on the Zooey pattern by the great and talented LuLu (here's her Etsy shop) and should have the top done tonight or tomorrow (I hope) and then it can hang out with the other tops in the pile on top of the dryer :)

On an unrelated note we have also been trying no naps for either kid this week (their choice, not mine...) and Abby has been wearing real underwear and using the toilet to go potty.  She's doing pretty well so far, but I'll spare you the nasty details.   It's been an interesting week so far.

 To you experienced moms out there, what did you do when your kids stopped taking naps?  I'm trying to figure out how to still get that break in the day that we all need, and haven't quite figured it out yet.  Any tips or advice would be wonderful!!

I'm hoping to get to the post office today to annoy the mail lady some more, and hopefully I'll be able to get some things finished this weekend between potty breaks and laundry.

Linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced (be sure to check out the other lovely projects over there!)

Happy Wednesday everyone!!!

p.s. This is my 44th post - I'm thinking something fun for my 50th!  Stick around!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Maybe the cutest thing I've ever made...

...besides these monkeys of course... ($20 pool and 80 degrees?  yes please!)

...would have to be this little turtle and snail block...
Of course the colors aren't 100% but I love how it looks like the turtle and the snail
are having a VERY important conversation.  I just know
they're bestest friends!

I am participating in a potholder swap this month and the end of this month is coming up soon...

So, last night I grabbed some supplies and started "messing around" with them.  That means I had no plan but just did something because I had to...deadline approaching...and this block is what I came up with!  This morning I finished it off and made another one as a mismatched "set" for my swap partner.

I added some hand stitching around the star of the turtle one and then in the middle of two of the borders in the second one instead of machine quilting it (I am without a walking foot you see...)
And the back...not as exciting...

I used binding I'd already made that was leftover from other projects and I like the colors together.  The turtle and the snail is a 7" square and the wildflowers one is about 7.5" square.

I just hope my partner likes them! I let my 3 year old put them in the mailbox today so hopefully they'll be arriving next week!

Thank goodness it's finally warm!!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

WIP Wednesday

Today I'm determined to get my post finished before it's Thursday and the title and link up no longer apply.  Here we go!

I got 4 blocks done for Bee Simple (I got to fill a spot so I had two blocks from March to catch up on).  These went together really easily, and turned out pretty well!  I think they will turn into great quilts. It's not great lighting but there is a white border on the bottom and left sides as well. 

 I also got one of my Hoop Up! Stitch and Send projects on it's way today!
 It's a quote from Modern Family that says, 
"If you want to fly I'm not gonna hold your feet to the ground, 
I'm gonna be the one to push you off the cliff." 
-Phil Dunphy

Here's what's up next:
Learn to make Hexies for a swap
2 potholders for Bee a [modern] swapper potholder swap (excited to start on these designs)
Modern She Made swap
This is my jumping off point for the MSM swap.  I don't want to give too much away (it's a secret swap) but I want to make a couple i-spy placemats for my partner's kids (hopefully in this color combo) to include with the other goodies.  Stay tuned partner!  More sneak peaks to come!

For now that's all I've got.

I appreciate the tips for the allergies and have been on the lookout for some locally made honey, as many of you said that helps, but haven't found any yet.  I've been hitting the Claritin pretty well in the mean time.

Linked up to Lee's WIP Wednesday!

Oh, and while I was perusing the other posts linked up to Lee's WIP Wednesday I came accross Kelsey Sews and saw the awesome quilt she made with i-spy charms.  I've got sooo many of those, I'm going to try to whip up a quilt with her tutorial soon to get some of them used.  I think it'd be pretty great to use rainbow charms in the quilt also.  Have a look!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Covert Robin Guest Post

I'd like to welcome Jill from Made with Moxie to the blog today!  She is the wonderful creator of my incredible clutch from the Covert Robin Swap!  

Hi! I'm Jill, aka ThatMoxieGirl, from over at Made with Moxie Today I am going to be sharing the gift I made for Marian as part of the Covert Robin handmade gift swap.

the covert robin button
This was my first swap ever so I was totally nervous. I wanted to make Marian something she would love love love. I'm one of those people plagued with the need to give the perfect gift. The fun part of a swap is that you get to stalk a person's blog, flickr account, pinterest, etc to get an idea of who your person is and what they like. Call me crazy, but I like it. I'm the kind of girl who peeks in your medicine cabinet when I use your bathroom. (There go all my dinner party invitations....:P )

Oh, yeah, my gift for Marian. I'm a sucker for bags and I haven't met a crafty lady yet who didn't love them too. Just about the time I got my Covert assignment, Anna at Noodlehead released her new Envelope Clutch pattern. It was a great
reason to buy the pattern, or at least that is what I told my husband. Seriously, I have very tolerant husband, but I don't think he completely understands the You Can Never Have Too Many Bags philosophy of life. *Note: this also applies to shoes.
I used some of this pretty flowered fabric that I had been
saving for the exterior and a sweet green polka dot for the lining. Inside the clutch there is a good sized zippy change pocket, slots for four credit cards and 2 pockets for a phone or other what-nots. This was the first time I had ever put a zipper in like that so I was so nervous not to mess it up!
To finish it off I added a little hand embroidery in complimentary colors to the exterior flap.
I always think it is nice to have a small bag for daily necessities that you can throw in a bigger bag (because I have an infant and toddler to haul around their "stuff" too.) I really hope you enjoy your new clutch, Marian and thank you for having me over!

Jill you really did a wonderful job, I'm so happy with this clutch!  It's perfectly done and absolutely my style!  I absolutely love it!

Be sure to check out Jill's blog, she's wonderful!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Dear Allergies

You need to leave now.  Before I itch my eyes out and sneeze off my nose.  Please.  It's been a fun week but enough's enough.  I'm going through Visine and tissues like nobody's business.  Not cool.

This is just getting ridiculous. 

Oh, if you could tell the wind to take it down a notch that'd be awesome.  Thanks.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

An Award and a Birthday!

First of all, I have some exciting news to share.  I've been awarded the Liebster Award by Deanna of Little D and Me! Isn't that cool!

I'm totally thrilled, even though this award is a little vague in detail.  Deanna did some research though and here's what she found.  

Basically, it's an award that goes to bloggers with small blogs.  By small, I mean less than 200 followers.

So, thank you Deanna!  Deanna was my partner for the Covert Robin Swap and if you haven't checked out her blog yet, you really should.  She's an amazing woman, and super talented!

Ok, so here's what I get to do now. 

1.  Thank the person who gave you the award and link to their blog.
2.  Choose 3-5 blogs with less than 200 followers and pass the award on to them.
3.  Display the Liebster Award somewhere on your blog

Here are my nominee's:

stephjacobson - I got to know Steph a bit through an I-spy swap I participated in earlier this year.  Her blog is full of crafty things, and she is super talented and creative.  You should check out the Star Wars party she threw for her son!  Amazing! 

There and Back - I've become Katie's Flickr stalker, and first found her from being in We Bee Modern together.  Now we're in several swaps and bee's.  She knows how to find the good ones! Remember those plus blocks with Echo I made a while ago?  Those were for Katie, doesn't she have great taste?  I'm not sure how many followers she has but I really enjoy everything she posts.  She's one of my creative idols, everything she makes is awesome, and I love how she writes her blog.  
City Stitches - Megan is amazing.  She leads bees, QAL's and does everything in between.  She is a wonderful crafter and has fantastic skills.  She's super nice and so talented.  We're about the same age and so I love hearing about her experiences and ideas.  

Mommy Made It! - I just recently found this lovely blog and really enjoy her posts.  She dives into projects and shares her experiences with them.  I like the guts it takes to do that.  I'm excited to see how her Hopscotch quilt comes along too!

Anyway, be sure you check those out. Congratulations blog friends!

In other news, it's my son Matthew's 3rd birthday today!  So we're going to have a fun day of Lego's, Mario Kart, brownies, playing at the "home park", and French fries - per his request.  
 There was a ladybug in the yard yesterday that they watched crawl around for almost an hour!  

I'll be back later with a WIP Wednesday post.  I've been busy and have lots to share!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Random Saturday Thinking...

1) I just stumbled across this gem of a shop on Etsy called weelittlestitches.  I want to get this one and make it immediately

I love the Golden Girls.  

2) I need to stop joining swaps.  I made a list yesterday with Lady Face's "help" and I counted up to 18 projects, including swaps, that are technically "in progress".  I did knock two of those out of the park last night but still.  That's 16 left.  NOT COUNTING all the other patterns I have fabric picked for that I'm not allowed to start until I get some of these others done.

3) I would love to sell my quilts and learn to make other goodies and sell those too.  How do you do that?  I'd love to make quilts for other people and get paid for it. Any advice?  I think that would be a dream come true. 

4) I joined a gym this week and have gone twice already.  My friend in CA is getting married this summer and I'd really like to get a new (smaller sized) dress to wear to the reception :) wish me luck.

5) I also want to get this print from Matte Stephens.  Etsy shop here.  I love his art and want to fill my house with it! I also wish it felt like spring.  Yesterday it snowed here in Pocatello and it's still too cold for me to wear flip-flops = not spring...

Isn't this the most lovely picture.  Perfectly spring.

6) I'm going to give myself 3 goals for this weekend: 1st - finish up the monsterz quilt back. 2nd -  make progress/finish my Hoop Up! Stitch and Send projects.  3rd - sew up the rest of the charm sized granny squares I've got ready from Fly A Kite by Riley Blake (then I can see if it's ready to become a quilt top and get it off my sewing table!).

7) I'm off to take a nap.  Happy Easter weekend!


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Monsterz and I'm Guest Posting!

Remember that wonderful thing called the Covert Robin Swap?  Well it involved guest posting too!  I've never been a guest blogger anywhere before but today I am guest posting at Little D and Me to talk about what I made for Deanna.

Head on over and check it out! 

I do have something to show you.  I started cutting binding for Ben's quilt and for the Drunkard's Path quilt in an effort to check off my three goals for April...and then I got distracted by this post from Katy at I'm a Ginger Monkey.  Well, I have some of this very same fabric, Monsterz from Cloud9, and wasn't sure what to do with it.  I wanted to show off the fabric and loved Katy's tutorial and how her quilt top turned out.  So I added two other prints (the two yellows you see below), followed the tutorial in the post, and voila! It took no time at all.  The only reason I didn't sew the squares up was because we had to go pick up my husband from school.

I really like it.  It's not going to be as large as the quilt in the tutorial, but I think it will be a great baby quilt perhaps to save for if/when we have another kid. I'm hoping my kids will go to sleep (now) for their nap so I can work on the layout and sew up the top.

In other news the kids and I went to an Easter party today for playgroup and they had such a great time.   
 I didn't think they would "get" why or how to hunt for Easter eggs, but they loved it!

 It went really well.

We also had a great craft.  Our host for the party had paper that we drew eggs and bunnies on.  Then we smeared frosting on the pictures and the kids stuck marshmallows on the frosting to decorate the bunnies and the eggs.  So clever! Abby demolished hers in the car on the way home.  

Hope you all have a happy Thursday!  My weekend starts today!  Hurray!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Happy Birthday to you!

Lady Face is two years old!!!  Yesterday was her birthday. 

That's right.  Until next Wednesday I officially have two two year olds running around the house!

I can't believe this little girl is getting so big. 

She is such a happy, dedicated, and intense soul.  I learn so much from her.  She is constantly seizing the moment, enjoying every little thing, and loves so much to make us laugh! 

She is sure of herself, she is beautiful, strong, smart, and so caring.  I'm so proud to be her mom.

She had a great birthday (there was snow on the ground in the morning!) and enjoyed every second of it! Even if she didn't quite understand the concept. 
She learned how to blow out a candle, and loved her gifts. 

I'm so so proud of her big brother too.  His birthday is next Wednesday and he's turning three.  He wasn't jealous that she was getting special treatment, he was excited for her!  All in all, I think my kids are pretty awesome.  They make me so happy.  

I got this toddler "pack-pack", as Monkey Pants calls it, from a great Etsy shop called MarineParents and I couldn't be more thrilled with it (wonderful shop, take a look!).  Lady Face loves it.  I've decided this balloon print with the girl and the bunny from Sarah Jane is her fabric.  If Lady Face was a fabric, this would be it.  Slowly, I'm collecting lovely things made of this print, and hoarding as much Sarah Jane fabric as I can get my hands on (aren't you all?!). 

Anyway, Happy Birthday darling girl. 

Just Three from Tracey

I love this idea from Tracey and am totally copying her and linking up over here at her blog.  This is an awesome goal, and I think it'll be really successful for me. 
The idea is to set three reachable goals for April.  Tracey and I seem to have the same issue of wasting our kids synchronized naptimes and perusing online fabric shops, pinterest, facebook...those time traps.  Time that I could easily spend binding (my least favorite part...) unfinished quilts, sewing pieces together or just making progress on my way too many WIP's and up my rate of finishing things! Heck, today I had enough time to cut some fabric for a swap but...then I didn't.  So!

Here's my list of three things to get done in April:

1) Bind my Drunkard's Path quilt - This baby has been quilted and waiting patiently on top of the dryer for over a month...sad...and I'm so anxious to use it!  It's going to be a wonderful lap quilt.  Anyone have an opinion on these considerations for the binding?
 Ok, this is the best shot I could get.  My top pick is the second one, it's a light aqua polka dot.  The one under it isn't as red as it looks, more of a raspberry print.  What do you think?

2) Finish and mail my Hoop Up! Stitch and Send Swap projects - Don't have pictures of these yet, but they are in progress.  I've been working on them a little here, a little there and it's just too slow of a pace.  Plus, they need to be out by the middle of the month (end of next week?  what?) so they'll have to get done.

3) Bind Ben (Husband)'s quilt - I finished quilting this one over the weekend, but it's such a honker of a ginormous thing, that I'm nervous to trim the sides and just get it over with. Haven't picked binding fabric for that one either...

Anywho... these are pretty reachable goals for me if I can just bit the bullet and sit down to do them.  But I've got to start somewhere, right?  So, those are my three goals for the month, what are yours?!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

I blame spring break...

...for my severe and ridiculous absence.

My almost 3 year old  has been severely testing limits this week and it's been spring break for my husband so...I haven't done as much sewing as I wanted to, but we're all still alive and well (as I wrote this he was trying to have a conversation through the window with the man fixing the neighbor's roof...).

This same child has recently taken to responding to everything with "Yes Sir!" or for me, "Yes Mom!" and saluting us (thank you Toy Story army men...), and both kids discovered how awesome the Muppets are.  So much that i've been going to sleep with Rainbow Connection stuck in my head. 

 See that yellow spot on the left side?  That's the first flower on the side of our house!

Guess what else.  I went to a tea party yesterday!  It was a fundraiser for the ISU Honor Society (I'm pretty sure) and a friend of mine sponsored a table and had an extra ticket!  There were real teacups and real teas - I tried the herbal huckleberry one - and even finger sandwiches, it was yummy.  Great to chat with adult friends too.

Remember the scarf I won from Rachael at Imagine Gnats? came in the mail yesterday!  And it's so gorgeous.  I love it and can't wait to wear it.  Of course I did have to pry it off of my little Lady Face first.
Oh boy, she loved wearing this!

Ok.  On to the quilty part!!  I do have one thing I want to show you today, and I think it's pretty great. 

I finished my Dream Big quilt top!  I absolutely love it.  This one is all for me and it's my favorite project to date! I'm trying to figure out what to use for the backing and think I might use the same fabric as the border fabric (California Girl by Moda and Fly a Kite by Riley Blake).  I love those prints.
This is a terrible picture but I'm totally loving this pattern and can't wait to finish this quilt!

Finally, I received my gift from my Cover Robin swap partner!! Holy smokes is it beautiful!  I'm really excited about it.  Stay tuned, you'll get to hear more about it this month, but here is a sneak pic.  It is perfect.  Now I need somewhere to go so I can show it off!

And do you remember those two log cabin blocks I made some time ago for Avery, the gymnast?  Well...they are now part of a gorgeous quilt!  I'm so pleased and thankful to have been part of such a wonderful project.  I hope Avery will enjoy it, and didn't Carrie do a wonderful job!  Here is a picture of the finished product from Carrie's Flickr (my two contributions are top row middle, and 5th row far right)

Happy Weekend!  We're going to make cookies today and get ready for Lady Face's 2nd birthday tomorrow!!!