Monday, April 27, 2015

Prepping for the week

Oh the weekend seems to have flown by! I have been trying to be better about being consistent in cooking breakfast for us.  The Saturday morning Farmer's market for fresh produce and our homemade placemats seem to be the motivation in the operation breakfast success this week.

Did you notice the patchwork above?! Yes that is correct! There has been machine sewing! I bought this pattern and I have my heart set on finishing them to send to my sister and mom for mother's day. I spent all Friday night cutting and pinning so that on Saturday morning I would be able to get on my machine and do some patchwork.

Did you know that practice makes better... and oh how I am so out of practice in sewing patchwork. My points don't match up in so many areas... but that's ok. I tell myself it doesn't have to be perfect... it just has to reflect where I am in my current skill level (which is obviously in need of more practice!)  - and it has to convey a lot of love. Oh how I hope it carries over!

The weekend flew by in a flurry of activity but to be honest the memories that I held close were the ones that happened right here. At home. Like how right now Liam loves to clap. And oh how we love clapping with him. Blocks are also a love right now. Oh how this little boy loves to take down towers that we stack for him. Ross is good about stacking his blocks in different areas of the play area that Liam has to crawl to.

In between the playing and the naps and the feeding and cleaning - crafting was done! Oh how wonderful those moments are when stitches can be added or a row can be sewn! I find myself utilizing a lot of the weekend time in preparation for crafting to take place during the week. During the weekend is when I trace the blocks for the S is for Stitch quilt to be stitched for the week. I'm challenging myself to stitch up seven blocks this week! And my mother's day present projects are all basted and ready for hand quilting. Chase over at 1/4" mark has written up a wonderful tutorial on hand quilting and I have been reading it over and over to prepare for sewing up these wonderful Kinchaku bags! I'm excited to get started!

My sampler by Alica Paulson is going well. I stitched up that little boat this weekend. It is such a lovely project. I was hesitant at first because it is stitched up on linen... but surprising enough I find that linen is a lot easier to stitch on than aida! Who would have thought! This just goes to show me that I need to continue to try new things. And oh how these projects have kept me learning new things!

The sewing basket is all prepped and ready for action! Oh how exciting! Even if nothing gets finished - at least the potential for crafting is there! And that makes me so happy!

I must get going. I am writing this post in bed with my laptop and although Ross is being a good sport, I know that he will sleep better without the glow. So good night everybody! I hope you dream of happy crafting endeavors!

Oh! That kale dish is this - one of my favorite ways to utilize kale. This dish probably makes it way to our table at least twice a month! It's a winner!


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Something New

A new project is underway here! With Liam's birthday just months away, I am trying to start my birthday presents for him! This is actually an ideal project to work on while Liam naps. This little boy of mine likes to feel the comfort of mama close to him while he sleeps - his naps tend to be longer, and with this teething process underway, it is working out best for us if I stay close by. Cuddles and stitches! The best kind of hour spent! 

This project has been so nice. It is really helping to motivate me to learn more about embroidery. For the B stitch I learned two new stitches using these really easy to understand videos on youtube: the stem stitch and the fly stitch. It is so amazing how giving people are in their knowledge... it is even more amazing how we can access such a large store of knowledge on the internet! We are able to learn so much!  

There is so much stitching going on in this little corner of my world! What is in your work basket? 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

My Sweetiepie Stitch Along

There is so much talent out there in the blogging community. And each blog, like it's writer has so much personality.  There are some blogs that I turn to when I need to get fired up to get my sewing list done. There are some blogs that I visit to appreciate a sense of aesthetics and calm. Alicia Paulson's Posiegetscozy is one of those spaces. When I visit her space, it's almost like I can hear her little girl laughing, smell bread baking, glory in the flowers both outside and in... and it's a place I go to when I need a figurative cup of tea and a breath of beauty and sweetness.

She just recently published her latest pattern, My Sweetiepie sampler - and oh it is perfect. The color fabric, the colors of threads all lying together, just make you feel cozy and warm.

This project goes so well with the birthday project I have in my mind for my little boy. When I saw that Alicia's kits were for sale, I used a bit of the funds I have been putting aside for Liam's birthday project and purchased it. And it was worth every penny! The pattern was printed on such lovely heavy paper, and the fabric and color of threads look so much richer and lovelier in person! I could tell the time and effort it took to put these kits together. It made me really reflect on the plight of the small business owner - and the craftsmanship that goes into their products. It really inspired me to start looking to smaller home based businesses for some of our household things. But that is another subject for another blog post.

When I opened my package, after marveling about the beauty of it - the questioned dawned on me... how will this new project fit into the rhythm spent on crafting during the day? The answer for that question came about shortly when I realized that Ginny of Small Things started a stitch along for this sampler! Two letters and their corresponding motifs a week, to be posted with a picture on Flicker or Instagram starting Friday April 24th.  I will probably be posting in Instagram and if you are interested in joining along, the hashtag is #mysweetiepieabcsstitchalong.  Handwork like cross stitching, embroidery, or hand quilting usually takes place during nap time since Liam sleeps best on the couch with his little feet on me. So my two motifs will be stitched during that time, and then when my two motifs are done, I can work on the other long term embroidery project for Liam's birthday that is already currently underway (more on that project later to come!).

I read something today that really touched me, and now is the headline of my to do list for the week. How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives ~ Annie Dillard.  A life of creating for my loved ones... oh yes please! I couldn't ask for more.

Friday, April 17, 2015

A Quilt For Us


 Oh what a whirl wind it has been! This little boy of ours is so busy! Between furniture climbing and using his new little walker, he is busy discovering and investigating favorite places.  He delights us with his laughing and his smiles as we chase him around and around.

Liam and I have started trying to take a daily walk around our neighborhood. It has been rather wet here lately, so when the sun does come out I try to get us out of the house. I put him in the sling and I try and point out different colors in the flowers that we see around us. I'm finding that the world is so different - so vibrant, when I take the time to actually focus on the nature around us. So much beauty to be enjoyed!

With playing and getting outside, this little boy of mine is starting to take long naps. Which would be oh so delightful usually - only these long naps only occur if he can feel me close to him. The moment that I get up, he can sense it and immediately wakes up. So close by I stay. Which is alright for me. I place a basket of stitching close by and I get a lot done.

A quilt for us is finally finished. Yes the scrappy log cabin quilt is finally bound and labeled. Finally labeled! A quilt just doesn't feel finished to me unless it has an embroidered label. And oh what fun I had making this one! A friend once told me that embroidery is like doodling for adults, and I have to admit that is just the approach that I take. Fun and colorful. Since appliquéing the label this quilt has been busy. Liam loves to play with it and oh how my heart loves to watch him enjoy this newly handmade addition to our home. Peekaboo and trying to pinch the different colors. It's so amazing - watching this little one discover. He is constantly surprising me. The day I finished he actually started to clap. I would like to think that the two occurrences had something to do with each other.

Did you notice those little teeth in some of the pictures? Yes, sigh, they are here. I was praying that Liam would be a graceful teether, and he has been. During the day while he is occupied there isn't any time to fuss about teeth. But during the night? Oh during the night - the poor little guy has nothing to distract him. It's a hard job babies have - the growing of their little bodies.

Liam is growing so fast. Teething. Walking with his little walker wagon. Crawling with lightening speed. Clapping. All of these things, I want to remember. I hope I never forget his smile and the sound of his laugh at this age. Or the weight of him in my arms being just right.

I made an apple pie from this recipe . It is my favorite apple pie recipe and it has never let me down. A pie, a quilt and a happy baby. It has been a good week. A very good week indeed.

Linking up to Finish it up Friday at  Crazy Mom Quilts and On the Windy Side for my finish in the Q2 Finish A Long.

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side