Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Christmas Round-Up Part 1

So for a good part of December I was working away on lots of gifts for lots of people! All the pictures are not up-loaded, so I'm going to start with what I've uploaded so far!

First up was socks for my in-laws (who we went to visit in October! I knitted them each a pair. There's a long story behind why I did this, but I'll spare everyone the details and just know this was important to me to do! =)


(also this picture is much more accurate color wise!)




I think I go the best compliment from my mother-in-law - she called to see if I really made her socks (the colorful pair) because they just didn't look like someone could have made them! I assured her they were knit by me and the family could vouch because I was on a big deadline and ignored the fam to finish the socks on time ROFL! =)

I also made my first ever dolls this year - from start to finish!


I had asked someone else to make me some, but as a typical mother - she told me I could do it and she would help if I got stuck. So I bought a pattern and set off to work. They aren't perfect, but they look like dolls so that counts LOL!

I bundled each doll with a lot of blankets:

Whipped up a cute bag and added a book:


and three girls in my life received a Princess and the Pea set!

I know at least my dd likes her set. Not sure about the other two girls, but I am hoping they enjoy their set too! =)

I also squeezed in some produce bags. These were not gifts I gave, but sewed for someone else who might be giving them away, so I felt some pressure to finish them!



I admit, I procrastinated on most of these and just felt I didn't have enough time to do it all in. There were quite a few late nights/early mornings. I hope I don't repeat this next year - because truthfully I LOVE making and giving things away ... I just don't like the stress that comes with it because I didn't leave enough time! =)

Christmas Round-Up Part 2 is here!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Out of hiding ...

Almost all of the gifts are made. The cookies are baked. The house is mostly clean. I can now emerge from hiding!

I never intended to disappear, but as Christmas edged closer I realized I had more and more I needed to do and not enough time to do it all in.

I haven't finished making all my gifts - I ran out of time, but I have all but one thing for today and tomorrow done - and that is definitely good news. It also means on the 26th and 27th I'll be busy making and sewing and creating!

I will be posting pictures of things in the coming week - in an attempt to make up for my absence. For now, I'll share 3 of my projects - our Christmas Eve jammies.


Every year my kids get new pajamas to wear for Christmas. Last year was the first year I made them for the kids.


When I was growing up, my mom did the same thing. I always knew I was getting new jams for Christmas. One year, I got a beautiful blue nightgown. I loved it. And I love having memories like that!


I hope my kids look back and someday love getting these jammies. For now, the older two are very vocal about loving this tradition. And that makes my heart just swell up with love!


I hope all of you have a very merry Christmas and make lots of wonderful new memories =)

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Thanks Twitter!

So, per usual, I have spent too much time on-line so far this week.
And yesterday, there was much twitter chatter about oamc (once a month cooking - and yes I had to look it up before I knew! LOL). And I kept reading about it and hearing what people were making, and then darn-it, I wanted to do it too! LOL!

So I packed the kids up and went to Target. I do NOT recommend this to anyone. I had a vague idea of what I would make and just went shopping. Adding this, and that, and some of this, and oh! If I buy that, I can make this too. Which, is completely unwise and again, I do not recommend doing it this way.

Last night I made some broth thanks to thanksgiving leftovers with plans to wake up and do lots of things today.

I decided to start with breads because they had to rise. I think that actually worked well.

And I also rounded up some help, because I knew this was going to be a long day!

We measured, mixed, laughed, and at lunch time we had all the bread dough done.

Which, I might add, almost made me cry. Because I thought we'd be farther. I thought it would be easier - a couple hours and wa-la, dinner for a lot of nights! Um, no. It does not work that way. Which probably most people would have known, but I always have really unrealistic estimates of how long things will take!

But it was okay, we pressed on (after eating lunch! And started in on some chili and some homemade mac and cheese. And bread was in the oven (and the rolls and pizza dough I let rise, then shaped and threw in the freezer LOL)

The kitchen was hot and on fire. We ended up sort of getting slowed down during all of this - too many pots to watch out for, things going in and out of the oven, little people running all over the place. It sort of got a bit chaotic in there, but we pressed on (seriously, let me pause for a moment and tell you how incredibly amazing my 10 year old and just how much she completely helped me out!! She rocks!)

We then did a second batch of both chili and mac and cheese. Then I made some meatloaf (using a recipe found on-line that I'm nervous about so I won't link it, but I tweaked it a bit because it just didn't look right when we mixed it up!). Then mixed up a different batch of meatloaf that we rolled into meatballs. At this point (roughly 4:15) I remember I forgot to cook the chicken in the crock pot. So I tossed that in.

I had promised my daughter we would without a doubt make pancakes that they could heat for breakfasts. And so at 5 we started pancakes. I ended up doing 8 batches of it - which sounds like a lot, but really, each batch didn't make that much. We did half plain and half chocolate chip - and this ended up being dinner (with scrambled eggs and toast).

After dinner I did a huge pot of turkey and rice soup (that I just make up as I go!). The chicken is now cooked, but I'm not doing anything with it until tomorrow (in which I have some more big plans).

And now - well now I'm sitting and not cooking LOL! All told, we made:
2 loaves wheat bread
2 loaves white bread
40 wheat rolls
28 buttermilk rolls
4 batches chili
2 batches mac and cheese
2 meatloaves
48 meatballs
2 batches turkey and rice soup
a lot of pancakes!

That gives us at least 12 meals. Not bad for a day's work! If, however, I do this again, I will have more of a plan!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

My First Tweet Up!

This weekend I was invited to attend my very first tweet-up.

It was a LOT of fun! It was sponsored by UL and I'm so glad they reached out and invited us!

We talked about ways to be safe this holiday season and then the kids were able to make some wreaths!


And then, surprise! Santa stopped by to visit with us! This was quite unexpected and a big hit with almost all the children. (My 10 year old is now too old to sit on Santa's lap - which I admit depressed me, but I didn't want to push the issue with her).


My 7 year old, however, is simply in love with Santa and was SO happy to see him! And she had to show him her wreath when it was done


The 3 year old wasn't sure at first, but then moved his chair next to Santa and took a few pictures (although, he never managed to get on Santa's lap, but that's okay!)


As a bonus, I was able to meet Kim (who blogs at Hormone-Colored Days) for the first time face-to-face. We connected through The Motherhood originally and then through twitter, so it was nice to actually talk without a screen!

All in all, it was a lovely day and I'm so glad we decided to head down there! =)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Skirt Redo

So I had showed you this:

And mentioned in the post that I wasn't sure about it.

Yeah, the more I looked at it the more I didn't like it. I tried it on a few more times. Started to kind of, well, hate it! Then I took in the sides. Still wasn't digging it.

Last night as I was trying to go to bed an idea hit me. And today I was able to work on it, and I like it a whole lot better. In fact, I love it. I think I would wear it every day if I could!


I took off the ruffle/gathered part. Cut it straight and just added it straight on. I think this was the fix I needed. I wore it tonight (I had a Stampin' Up party at my house) and I really really like it. It's so much better now. And I feel so much better about it now! I will be able to sleep peacefully now tonight LOL! ;-)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

And an apron ...

I finished the apron late last night, but was too tired to take pictures and share them!

The apron is reversible which is pretty neat!



I admit, the blue-ish side is my favorite side.

And I didn't realize how much the pattern had influenced my fabric buying until I was putting it together yesterday. I was at Jo-Ann's a few weeks ago buying other things and I saw the blue and bought it. I didn't have the pattern with me, I guessed on how much fabric to buy. I bought the pattern while ago, stared at it for a few months and then tossed it into the pattern stash. I haven't looked at it for a few months, but clearly, it made an impression on me - here's the picture on the pattern:

Emmeline Apron Sewing Pattern

Umm, doesn't that look a little familiar? At least I didn't use a similar greeny fabric for the other side LOL! The apron is so cute - it's called Miss Emmaline and you can get it from Sew Liberated here. I think there are a lot of great patterns over there actually!

So in general, I think I got a lot done for the 2 craft days I took part in! Another craft day is coming up Dec. 15 and 16. I like that. I like to have an excuse to kind of ignore everything else and just craft for two days (not that I did ignore everything else, but I did do the minimum amount required to keep this house running LOL!)

And as always, you can see more photos here!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Craft Day - Day 2!

I woke up with high expectations:


I had fabric cut to finish binding on placemats, make a skirt and make an apron.

I stayed up last night cutting the fabric out. And I woke up eager to work. And then my sewing machine decided it didn't want to cooperate. So I cleaned it, oiled it, got all the fuzz out of there. It was much happier and decided to start working. Between that and the whole being mom and taking care of the house thing, and some things taking longer than I anticipated, I managed to finish the skirt!


Here it is on the hanger - the top matches the bottom:


I like it, but I think it might be too wide to have the ruffle on the bottom, so I'm going to let it sit for a day or two and then decide what to do with it. Maybe nothing. We'll see.

To see more of my pictures go here, and with any luck I'll finish at least the apron before heading off to bed!

Edited to add - I made the skirt using Sew What! Skirts and tracing one of my favorite skirts to get the shape of the skirt!

Craft Day Project 2!

I finally managed to whip up some more napkins - we've needed more around here, but I never seem to get around to making them! Now we have some for fall, Christmas, and winter time!




You can go here to see more of my pictures!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Craft Day Project 1!

We finished up our first project for craft day - making necklaces.

Originally a few of my friends were supposed to come over and make some with me, but for various reasons, everyone had to cancel.

But, I had two very willing girls here who wanted to help me, so it worked out fabulous if I do say so myself!!

Here are the finished necklaces ...

(7 year old's)

(10 year olds)


These were made with a washer, that has some pretty paper taped to it, and then a few beads were added. Very simple and yet, I think they look gorgeous!

And some random pictures of us making them:






You can go here to see more of my pictures!

Craft Day #1

So, for the first of two craft days, I am feeling quite ambitious!

My goal is to make:
-skirt for me

On day 2 I want to make:
-an apron
-finish up place mats from a while ago
- knit some of the socks I'm working on

So, cross your fingers and we'll see how things go!! =)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Sneak Peeks!

This time of the year is always hardest for me to blog about. I'm working on gifts, and yet, don't necessarily want to share pictures of the gifts, since you never know who is reading this blog (and one time I showed a picture before giving it away and the receiver guessed! LOL!)

So, today you just end up with a few sneak peaks!

I have officially finished one project:


It turned out so well, I admit I will be sad giving it away. I will have to make one for myself after the holidays!

The second project has been started and is coming along so nicely ...


Now, it won't take many of you long to figure out what it is, but at least this way, you can't see how it is looking just yet.

The i-touch has been an important part of my crafting thus far, so I decided to throw it in the picture - because, really, there wasn't much else to show you! LOL!

I've been listening to episodes of Craft Sanity while working away. I'm on episode 60 right now - which is with Amanda Soule Blake, also known as Soule Mama and who I completely idolize and so wish I could be like her!!

I have declared this next upcoming week a major crafting week. I will attempt to get as many things done as possible from Monday through Friday. Tuesday and Friday I will have friends over and will get to craft with company - which is always so much fun! There is also going to be Craft Day on twitter Tuesday and Wednesday so I'll be over there a lot probably.

Monday, November 09, 2009

And now the fun begins ...

Last week was an interesting week. Little man started the week sick and shared it with me - I know, my son is such a great sharer LOL!

I also had a birthday present to make that I had sort of procrastinated on. I started them Monday night. Just a pair of pedicure socks. I figured that I'd be able to finish them by Friday night with no problem. Thursday I was mostly done with the second sock when all of a sudden I remember the birthday girl was allergic to wool. So Thursday night I started a second pair of socks made from wool-free yarn. Thankfully I finished it on time, but declared to my husband that I needed a knitting break because my hands were sore from all that knitting!

Saturday saw me at Joanns, signing up for a jewelry class (my 10 year old and I are taking it together and I'm so excited!!) And then I saw a sweater pattern. And yarn that I wanted to make the sweater in. And, well, Saturday afternoon I started to cast on! So much for my knitting break LOL!

But now, now the real fun begins. 45ish days until Christmas. So tonight, I started to make those lists I always swear I'm going to make much earlier in the year. It's time to decide what to make for who.

I LOVE this part - I love sitting down and thinking about each person and what I could possibly make for them. Then figuring out all the supplies I will need and just making lists. I love it! Now, I'll need to remember how fun this all is the week before Christmas when I'm stressed and worried about not finishing everything on time LOL! =)

So this week will be a week of planning. Figuring out what to make, what to make first (some things are actually started, some have to be shipped so they need to be ready, some are going to be given after Christmas, etc, etc). And I'm hoping I can get it all done so that I can do some supply shopping next weekend and then get started right away. I think there will be quite a few knitting projects, some sewing I'm sure. Beyond all of that, I just don't know yet! I'm debating on doing some embroidery, and our jewelry class is coming up at the start of December, and that might sway me on changing up a few gifts too! =)

The kids are getting very much into the crafty spirit - they've been talking about making ornaments and my 10 year old has already started to make a few Christmas gifts (which, can I just say, makes my heart swell up so much! I can't lie - I just love it!!) And we're talking about baking cookies and other yummies. I just hope we aren't overloading ourselves - I want to do all these things, but I want them to be enjoyable and not a to do list we're furiously trying to finish, ya know?

Anyway, that's what coming up around these parts and I am looking forward to it! =)

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

A few oldies ...

Before going on vacation, in addition to all the other things I needed to do, I decided that there had to be some vacation crafting.

Hence, some pillows were made for the little ones. But not just ordinary pillows, but pillows with handles. After all, we were going to have lots of things to manage on the train journey and, let me just say, that those handles came in handy!


They are just simple envelope pillows ... here's the back ...


And I made two pencil cases for the kidlets to store things in. Except, the three year old ahs lots his, so I only have pictures of one ....


Would we have survived vacation without them? Sure! But, it wouldn't have been as fun!!

Monday, November 02, 2009

Happy Halloween!

All three of my lovelies:


And I admit, I just love this shot of them - it's so them! Even with my oldest blurry - because they are always moving and on the go, and someone is always on someone and this is just the perfect picture of them, they way they are!

My bride:

Now, how long until the real wedding? I see this picture and boy, it knocks me back. Soon enough we won't be dressing up - it will be the real deal! Yikes! For now though, it was great pretend fun! The dress was from a wedding earlier this year. I made the veil and shawl for her though =)

My candy corn:

I made the costume for her - it was actually pretty easy to whip up. I even lined the whole thing. She helped me draft the pattern - it was so cute to get her input and to get her help. I loved making it just for that reason =)

My BLUE dinosaur:

And yes, blue is very important because he was so completely insistent that he had to be a blue dinosaur. So off to the store we went to pick out blue fabric to make his blue dinosaur and thankfully he loved it and it must have been what he pictured!


I also made some fun halloweeny things for myself!


A cute skirt (that I love and so want to make a million more of - one for every day of the year would be fabulous! So nice and comfy and wonderful! LOL!) And I embroidered the little spider on the shirt to match it.

It was such a great Halloween overall, and we got more than enough candy to satisfy everyone's sweet teeth =)