April 30, 2012

a fresh {re}start

Note to self: don't ever ask "what next?"

My crazy Thursday decided to continue itself through the weekend. It was non-stop, really. With each thing that happened I would ask myself "what next?". Apparently that was the wrong thing to do. So, today as I awoke to a rainy, gloomy day, I decided "enough is enough". It's time to channel and create good thoughts, positive thoughts, and positive energy.

Sometimes {I feel} it's easy to get caught up in a "funk". It's easy to get distracted by "stuff" that happens in life. It's too easy to see {or assume} these "super moms" on blogs, social media, and other sources that have an insanely neat and tidy home, create gorgeous things all day long, have quality fun time with their kids all day long, do lunch and play dates with their besties, cook fabulous meals for their family, all with their hair and makeup done, in great clothes, each and every day. Maybe it really does happen...however I can't get in my own way and hold it against myself if I don't do the same.

So, today is a new day. Time to pull myself back together and just get re-going. I can't let the silly stuff get in my way.

I make my own sunshine!

April 27, 2012

{kcwc day 4}

Well. KCWC day 4 came with great intentions and fun plans for some refashioning, but reality of being a mother of four took over.

Think: upset tummies, sprained ankle at school, fussy baby, piles of laundry, pick up daddy at airport, get stuck for hour and a half in rush hour traffic, mouths to feed, trip to urgent care, more upset tummy...needless to say day 4 didn't happen in the kids clothes week challenge.

Cheers to a great weekend though!

April 26, 2012

kids clothing week challenge {day 3}

I'm halfway there in the Kids Clothing Week Challenge. Three days in a row I have had {made} the opportunity to sit down and sew for for the kids. It's really been awesome!

I'm so excited for day 4. I'm planning some re-fashions for the girls.

A recap of day 3:

I was able to finish my little man's pants. I'm debating adding some pockets and perhaps a matching vest??? And... I was able to make a skirt that my oldest daughter had asked for. I'm not crazy about the fabric, but I'm really happy with how it turned out.

April 25, 2012

birthday parties galore!

We're crazy for birthday parties!

This month between my 6 year old and 7 year old they have been invited to 7 {yes, 7!!!} birthday parties! Buying gifts can get very expensive. We usually try to get creative with gifts, and try to get something fun and unique that will still be useful. {including but not limited to crafts, park day passes, zoo passes, event gift certificates, etc}

This last weekend my 6 year old was invited to a party for a fellow kindergartner. In the invite was a little note that surprised me and I thought it was such an awesome idea. It asked that you NOT bring a gift but instead make a $5 donation {suggested but only if you were willing} which would be donated to their teacher/class to buy books for the class. I loved the idea - the child doesn't end up with more "stuff", and the class got new books!

{Ok, we still kind of gave a gift...my daughter made a homemade birthday cards for the birthday girl we attached a homemade flower hair clip - I love making these!!! They're quick, simple, and cost close to nothing to make.}

I will definitely have to keep this in mind for my own kids. Other great ideas would be to donate gifts to Toys For Tots or children's homes/homeless shelters. They by no means ever need more "stuff" and what a great opportunity to teach them about giving to others and those in need.

about a boy {kcwc day 2}

day 2 of the kids clothes week challenge.

hour of sewing - check! it was more like two hours {which would have been awesome had i not run into a few bumps in the road}. sadly, i didn't finish my little project that i started today. i will tomorrow though! {minor finishing touches & hemming}

i decided to sew for my little boy. i had yet to make anything for him {except burp cloths}, so i decided to make a pair of pants out of the seersucker I bought at Joann's the other night.

i made a pattern using a pair of linen pants he already has {which was a breeze}, and got them all cut out while kids were napping. i made the mistake of pinning them together, trying to prep, while watching the results show of The Voice. of course i didn't realize my pinning mistake until after i had sewn both outside seams & went to press them!

{curious if this only happens to me??? maybe this is why i prefer making skirts and dresses.}

wouldn't you know, i back stitched the dickens {thanks for the word, grandma} out of those, which made ripping the stitches less than a breeze. the remainder of my sewing for the evening was spent being a pokey puppy paying ├╝ber close attention to what i was doing.

i'm so excited to get these done and try them on my little man!

it's rather refreshing making something without ruffles, ribbon, or a skirt for once.

April 24, 2012

sewing circles {kcwc day 1}

i had incredible intentions of de-cluttering and organizing closets & cupboards this week ... but yesterday i came across the Kids Clothes Week Challenge over at Elsie Marley. i decided it was the perfect opportunity to make some progress on some of these clothes for the kids. so i am committing myself for the week! one hour a day dedicated to sewing for the kids {very doable even for me}.

last night i managed to get all the kiddos to bed and got to work. earlier while i had been trying to decide what i would start on for day 1, little miss "L" picked up a green and white polka dot piece and asked for a skirt. a surprising choice, but i decided to go with it.

i decided to make a circle skirt since they're pretty quick to make & it's something different from the usual elastic waist simple skirt. it took a little longer to make than it should have {i had a little "chicken" that was having a hard time staying in bed}. by no means is it my most inspired, creative, or best work.  regardless, it got done & it always feels great to actually finish something. voila!

excited to sew some more tonight for day 2!

April 23, 2012

fabric. fabric. fabric.

{chuckle} a few years ago i was at a fabric store in Phoenix with my grandmother. we were waiting in line at the cutting table when a young woman turned to my grandmother and asked "how do you start a stash?". she politely answered "i guess it just starts and builds from your first project, or buying small amounts of fabrics that you enjoy".

there have been no troubles building a "stash" here!

sometimes i wonder if i might have an addiction to buying fabric. {not really}. i love to look at fabric and "envision" what that fabric would perfectly make. my grandmother or mom on the other hand would pick a project and then seek out their fabric. unfortunately i "envision" much quicker than i can "make".  yesterday when i was at my grandmother's house i was looking at this {table cloth}and thought it would make the cutest skirt overlay for one of my girls {vision: a cute white linen tank sundress with a long skirt and this over the skirt portion}.  it would look adorable in pictures {in my head it does anyway}.

last night i stopped at JoAnn's for some elastic {and only elastic} so that i can finish some projects. two cuts of fabric later...my stash has grown {again}!  i saw this plaid fabric and thought it would be perfect for a little preppy skirt for my oldest daughter.  and the seersucker will be perfect for a pair of pants for "W" {i have yet to make him anything, so i'm excited to sew for a boy}.  it's a good thing my husband is going out of town for work - my project execution is always much more productive when he travels.

April 20, 2012

sewing success!

the home-ec lesson was a success!

"A" loved sewing. she decided that she wanted to make a skirt {not surprised since she is constantly drawing/designing clothes}. so, gg taught her how to make a simple skirt. "A" chose her own fabric {a girl after her mother's heart - she chose black & white}, cut out the pieces {gg made her a pattern}, did her own pinning, and did all the sewing. the only part gg had to do was the elastic.

so proud of her!


"what if you woke up today with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?"

i was thinking about this quote/saying this morning. i have no clue who to attribute it to, but i find it very powerful and thought provoking. i have so much to be thankful for and am blessed beyond measure. one of those blessings is my grandmother, gg as the kids call her {great grandma}. very few of our friends still have their grandmothers around, but mine is 87 and doesn't skip a beat. she is such a blessing in our lives!

gg is the person who taught me how to sew {nearly 30 years ago}. this morning i dropped my oldest daughter {7} at gg's house for a little home-ec lesson. she too is going to learn how to sew, and i am so excited to see what she makes!

today i am thankful for so much, but especially the blessing of gg in my life and in my children's lives.

April 19, 2012

bye bye Pinterest.

I LOVE PINTEREST! However...I've realized how much time I {personally} waste on it. It's not good!

Since "there's an app for that" I find that random pauses throughout the day get filled with pinning & browsing, and less doing. More than once I have stayed up waaaayyy too late pinning, told my kids "just one more second" while on Pinterest, ignored stuff that I probably should have done...all for the love of Pinterest!

So, I've logged out. I actually did a couple weeks ago {as a test to see how it would go over}. I've deleted the app {yes I did!}. And, I survived!!! I have not been on or needed Pinterest. I have not died not knowing what 'creative' things my dear friend wants to make, do, and create {even though she admittedly can't sew a button to save her life}.

I'm going to pin "old school". My likes and inspirations change so frequently that I decided I'm going back to my design school days of having an actual cork board and/or inspiration bin for those things that catch my eye and that I love so much. I'm going to pull out the good 'ol sketch book to throw my thoughts and ideas down.

I've taken back my time {and life}. I'm a creative person by nature & have enough thoughts, plans, and ideas roaming around. I guess someday I would rather have the thought "I wonder what I could have pinned on Pinterest" than "I wish I had gotten more done".

bye, bye Pinterest. xoxo

rise by lifting others

i sat down today to write thank you notes for our son's baptism gifts from this last weekend. this is actually a fairly great accomplishment considering i've been horrible at sending thank you notes lately. incredibly rude - i know!!! my mother raised me so much better than that and always set an awesome example when it came to writing thank you notes...sorry momma!

as i was diligently writing my notes i heard the mailman outside. i quickly jumped up to check the mail {as i always do} only to find the usual "junk". i wasn't surprised, 99% of the time it's junk mail.

it got me thinking of how i miss getting {personal} mail. with email, texting, facebook, and so forth, people rarely send letters or cards anymore. even birthday cards are kind of a thing of the past. so it got me thinking...if i were to receive a short note from someone saying they appreciated me, or thank you for the great conversation, the coffee date, {or whatever!!!} it would brighten my day beyond belief. maybe someone else would be just as happy to receive the same type of note from me???

it just so happens that i just had dinner and reconnected {after 7 years} with a dear friend and former co-worker who i just adore. i felt the need to write her and thank her for reaching out to find me and to let her know how much i appreciate her. i grabbed my mess of a box of notecards, and this is what I found...on the top staring right at me...

a small card with a quote by Robert G. Ingersoll:
"We rise by lifting others."

i enjoy helping others and making others feel good. so i decided to make it a personal goal to at least once a month send someone a personal note to say "thank you" and to lift them up. in return, i shall expect nothing back except for personal growth {and maybe the warm fuzzies}.

in the end it's another thing added to "the list", but i'm excited to see how quick i can burn through these piles of note cards!

April 18, 2012

the scrap/patch skirt...done!

i'm off to a good start on "the list".  at least i'm moving on it already. 

i have this skirt that i started about four years ago. it was originally intended for my second daughter "L", but i got stuck several times along the way.  sadly i lost my "vision" for it.  luckily though i had another girl along the way, so that by the time i had it figured out i had someone new that it would fit. 

the last time i touched this skirt was last summer.  i had already attached the waist band and the bottom ruffle when i decided that i needed to add a lining.  i threw it in a box along with other unfinished projects and forgot about it. 

i had some "free" time the other night and decided that before i could start or do any more sewing i needed to finish this stinkin' skirt!  it has been four years in the making {not because it was a complicated project}, and if i leave it any longer my last daughter is even going to be too big to wear it.

finally!  the skirt has a lining {i'm not happy with how it turned out}, and it is done!