Tuesday, November 25, 2014

In my kitchen: the cookie jar

Last week's peanut butter cookies 
Today's empty jar 

 Ready for the week! 

Ahhh.... that is the sound of a happy lady. I love the cookie jar when it is full... but I love...love...love... it when it is empty. An empty container is a sign that the contents were thoroughly enjoyed and that the one I love is full and happy.

Lately Ross and I have... please excuse the cliche... taken to having milk and cookies when he gets home from school. No he is not a student, but a teacher who works at school. This little ritual as well as snacking throughout the day usually empties the jar in about a week between the two of us and the guests that pop up every now and then.

I grew up in a household of bakers. Not professional bakers... but people who just generally loved to bake. Growing up, I would love the way that the house would smell whenever there was a treat in the oven. Especially the way it would make the house so warm.

You wouldn't think it... living in Hawaii... but it does get cold here on occasionally - cold being a relative term. Anyways...I digress. Today is a cold day. Rainy and windy. The perfect day for baking.

Ross requested snickerdoodles and I was happy to oblige seeing as how those are one of my favorite cookies as well. Snickerdoodles are one of my sister's trademark cookies and it alway makes me think of her.

Growing up - I got a glimpse of what type of wife...mother...person -  I wanted to be by watching my own mother and sister and others who were close to me. So many of the women that I admired... whether they were working moms or stay at home moms.. they showed their love through the labor of their hands. From a clean kitchen... to folded laundry... to cookies waiting in a jar. I have been so blessed to have had such examples in my life. I look forward to carrying on the same things that shined so brightly in my life within my own home.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

First stitches

 Winter in Hawaii is officially here. The cold rains have come - making it ideal for hand quilting projects on the couch while Liam sleeps. Finally the last of my 2013 projects that followed me into 2014 are in the forefront of my attention. This is the project that I have been patiently waiting to begin. Eager yet also afraid.
My Coming Home To Kuiipo Quilt top is finally put together and and the first of the quilting stitches went in today. This quilt is the quilt that has documented so much of the past three years. I started appliquéing the blocks for this quilt shortly after Ross and I got married. The fabrics in this quilt themselves a time machine of different moments of ours lives. Our wedding. Our first Thanksgiving. The family that has loved and supported us. Each block representing a story - moments both sweet and sour. 
 The first block to begin is actually the first block that I appliquéd. The fabric used here was actually used to decorate for our wedding. The design is the crown flower... the flowers that Ross and his cousins picked so that my niece and flower girl Naomi would be able to toss them down the isle before I walked down to marry my best friend.
 Not having quilted with a hoop - or much by hand - I am telling myself that it is alright if the stitches are not perfectly spaced. The imperfections in the quilting, like the ones in the appliqué will tell the story of a beginning. Of a process. And that is alright.
It is raining today. The trade winds are blowing blowing blowing. My sweet baby is sleeping and I have soup simmering away on the stove. I am going to revel in this sweetest of moments and hand quilt while meditating on how blessed I am.

Happy Sewing everybody. Linking up to WIP Wednesday at freshly pieced 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Celebrating with Handmades

I am ashamed to admit that sometimes my family members are the last people to receive handmades to mark special occasions. I think it's because I know that they will forgive me if I'm a lot  little late on birthday and anniversary presents.

But often times I am reminded that we only have so many birthdays and anniversaries to celebrate in a given lifetime. And when I stop to remember that life speeds past so fast... like the lifespan of a bloom... I push myself to meet a birthday deadline.

My father's birthday and parent's anniversary fall under the same month. My father was the one who taught me how to give in a handmade way. When my sister and I were little we would ask dad what he wanted for his birthday... he would always exclaim that he wanted something handmade... not store bought. Often times, as we pulled all nighters to finish handmade presents, we would exclaim how it was so hard... how we wish that dad would be placated with store bought something.

It wasn't until I got older that I really started to appreciated the love that can be put into a handmade object. Being the recipient of handmade lovelies I have often found those items to be the ones that receive places of honor within my home and heart. It isn't in the product... but the love that is carried with that said product.

So with the musings in my mind and heart... I'm pushing hard to finish these small tokens of love and expression for my parents... the two people who taught me about love and sacrifice. The two people I think of often now that I am on my own journey into motherhood.