Sunday, April 25, 2010

Baby Blanket

Today I made a quilt for new Baby Girl. My friend Kristina bought a little kit for me to thank her for making snack bags for her (pictures to come). I love it! The birdies and paisley fabrics are so cute!

The back of the blanket is flannel birdies. SOOO cute! This is such a snuggly blanket.
Lastly, here is the dog, enjoying Muffin's play slide. She prefers to lay above the ground: chair, on top of dog house, planter box, and now apparently the slide.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


We finally had a nice, warm spring day a couple days ago. We decided to fully embrace it!
We celebrated Spring with a new water table for the kids to play with. They both love it! Muffin helped Daddy Man put it together.
And filled it up all by herself! The table is made to hold sand in half of it, but after a brief trial, we decided that 1 toddler + 1 baby + 40 lbs of sand + 5 gallons of water = HUGE mess. We are going to stick to just water for now. ;)
Immediately following our beautifully warm day we've had 2 days of rain. Such a tease. Although I am not in any rush for the Redding summer heat, I am ready for being outside in nice, mild Spring weather. Ugh. So what do you do after being teased with a day outside, then couped up inside? SEW! Part of Operation Beautify was moving our huge desk out to an unused corner of the living room to use as a sewing/homework table. I LOVE it! To celebrate my new sewing center, I made a sewing machine apron using a pattern I got on sale at Joann's for 99 cents!
I bought these fabrics a month or so ago, not knowing what I would make with them, but I just had to have them. So glad I found something cute to make. The pockets hold scissors, seam ripper, rotary cutter, tape measure, pin cushion, and anything else I need while I'm sewing(read: sugar!).
I was shocked to stumble into a huge sale at Joann's last week. Yay for $15 patterns on sale for 99 cents!

I leave you with this: Me, barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen, making bacon. (Husband thought this was worth sharing.) Organic, uncured bacon, I might add, which I recently found at a market in town. So exciting! I thought we were going to have to give up pork, (I only make pork tenderloin and sweet and sour pork) until I found this! It's from a local farmer too! Yay! They sell bacon, tenderloin, and loin chopped up, everything I need to make my favorite pork recipes! Score!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Operation Beautify, Day Two

I had to call in for reinforcements to get today's projects done, but Daddy Man and I had fun getting our room put together. First, a little side project to spruce up one of the walls (previously blank) in our room. I paired our engagement photo with a couple of new framed Uppercase Living words. I cut a piece of fabric to go in the frame (yay for using fabric on hand) and put the word on top of the glass. It took about 5 minutes.

Now on to the nitty gritty. A couple of weeks ago we bought a new platform storage bed, and moved it to a different wall. We've been wanting to move our TV/computer to this wall, but just didn't have the time. Well, tonight we made the time, and beautified it big time!
That's the before picture on the TV. :) We have a Mac Mini computer hiding in the black and white box in between the plates. All the cords are beautifully hidden...a must, since this table is right at the entry to our room. It's the first thing you see as you walk in (from the side). It is a bit monotone for me, but I think I like it. LOVE how clean it looks. I'm sure Muffin and Mr. Baby will have fun playing with the printer conveniently placed right at their level. Ahh well, you have to give them something. ;)

Up next: our desk area, which previously housed our TV/computer, office stuff, and a whole lot of junk, is being moved out to the living room. It will hold my sewing machine (yay!!) and be a clear work space for Daddy Man to do homework. Not sure what is going in it's place yet, but it feels great to get our room less crowded!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Operation Beautify, Day One

It's official! Operation beautify (see last post) is under way. I think I finally found a groove, because today I had laundry done, bread made, trip to the play area done, dinner prepped, and two areas of my room beautified, all before the kids took their afternoon nap! Yeah, I'm shocked too. Not sure how that all happened, but I'm definitely going to try to repeat that in days to come!

First of all, I love the play area at our mall. The kids do too. Mr. Baby tried out the race car today.
And Muffin fought some fires with her baby doll.
Don't worry Mom, my hands were at the ready to catch him!
How cool is this? I want a tree slide.
Mr. Baby started crawling yesterday, but he's been climbing up the slide for weeks.
We had the play area all to ourselves this morning- perfect for Muffin. She likes things a bit on the calmer side. She usually finds one friend at the play area and talks with her and follows her around. Usually a girl around 3-4 years old. And she always remembers their names.
Now, down to business. Check out this post for my motivation for Operation Beautify. I decided to post before pictures too, however embarrassing they may be, because I think it will help me to keep things from getting that way again. So here you have it, the top of my cubbie storage, my first before:
And After:
Ok, so the "and they lived..." sign is going to have to wait for Daddy man to come home to be hung. I gave it my best shot, but decided to forgo frustration and leave the retarded double-screw-hole pictures to the professional. And the cubbies themselves will be tackled another day.

And here's the next one, the top shelf of my closet. Before:
And After:
Love those bins! (And I didn't even just pile everything in them!) One holds extra craft stuff like knitting, mohair, and stuffing. The next one has fancy shoes (it's true, I hardly ever wear heals, but I do have a few cute ones) each in their own box, and extra purses and wallets. The last one has winter clothes. Yay! This is so fun! I feel better already!

Monday, April 12, 2010

An Orderly Palace

Are you the kind of person who can't be comfortable in a room until it is cleaned, organized, and generally spotless? Some people just can't relax until the chaos is non-existent. I am not that kind of person... which I am thankful for, because with two kids, clutter seems to create itself. Yes, I prefer things picked up and orderly, but I can deal if they're not. I am, however, greatly affected by a room's esthetic- if it is not put together right, or decorated in a cool way, I feel antsy until I fix it. It is worst in my own home. Since moving to our new home in Redding, I have not really designed the kids' room how I would like it. There's a few dolls on some shelves, but it's mostly a room with a crib, toddler bed, cubby toy storage, and toys. My Mom gave Muffin this great Uppercase Living sign, so I decided to run with the castle theme. Totally works for a girl and a boy, right?
So I designed and made a castle pillow for Muffin's bed, to start. This makes me feel slightly better about their room. Next on the agenda: sprucing up some old curtains, finishing a keepsake shadowbox for each kid, and whatever else I can think of! I'm pretty sure I can't paint, so I have to be a bit more creative with color. Anyhow, the castle pillow gives me hope!
For the castle part I used fabric samples that I've had for 6 or 7 years. I didn't allow myself to buy anything new for this project, and I love how it turned out! It makes me happy when I can use something that I've had for a while. This cute fabric was just asking to be used!

As I write this post I am looking around my room feeling a bit disgusted with it all. Pictures un-hung, projects half-done, clutter begging for a home (or the garbage can)..... I suppose it's the collateral damage of a busy family. Does it really have to be this way? I think not. We seriously clean our room every day, or sometimes every other day, but it seems to get right back there every day! And honestly, when I have one hour or less of kid-free time in the day, and am faced with the choice to organize my desk, or do something fun (project, watch a show, play a game with a house-mate, or sleep), for sanity's sake I often choose to do something fun. But enough is enough. I've decided, operation beautify is officially under way. Time to get my Palace looking how I want it. I have no idea how long this will take, but it will happen.

So farewell for now. I am going to kick off operation beautify with a nap. ;)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

New Life

Yesterday Muffin and I planted zucchini and yellow onion in our garden. We were both excited to get our hands in the dirt and gently place delicate life into the ground. Is it ok to feel as excited as a two year old about something? I think so. It keeps me young. ;)
A side note: I know that tomato cages are not necessary for zucchini plants- these are strictly a defense system against our dog, who likes to lay in my planter box, until we get the netting up around the garden. I'm pretty sure that she won't get up in there once there are a bunch of plants, so hopefully the netting will be temporary.

And while we're on the subject of new life, though I'd share my belly that, as of yesterday, is no longer comfortable in my normal jeans. I was dreading the oh-so-unfashionable full-belly-paneled maternity jeans until the moment I slipped them on. Ahhh. It felt soooo good.
Three good things about full-belly-panel maternity jeans (which I avoided like the plague until halfway into my second pregnancy):
1. Oh so comfortable
2. The dark panel looks like a layered shirt, should your top shirt have a hard time reaching the bottom of your belly
3. No rim of a waistband around my hips for Mr. Baby to try to stand on while I'm holding him. Is it too much to ask him to just sit still and not try to climb me?

Happy Growing!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Craft Happy

Today I feel like I'm in a crafting frenzy! Does that ever happen to you? Sometimes when I start cleaning some part of the house, I get on a roll, and I just can't stop. I find all the things that need cleaning or organizing, and move at warp speed from one task to the next. Well, that's what I felt like today, only with crafts. Between reading Dana's blog, and the purlbee blog, there are now so many projects on my to do list. I did three separate crafts just today. I'm not sure why I feel such urgency to get them done. The remedy for all this? Take a step back and take a deep breath, pick one project and go one step at a time...and love every minute of it! I am just so excited to have all these ideas!

Today's first project was finishing up a remake I started yesterday. I took an old shirt of mine:
and turned it into a column dress for muffin...
...and a shirt for Mr. Baby!
To make the dress I simply cut the front and the upper part of the shirt off, sewed the sides together to fit around Muffin, and added some flutter sleeves. Mind you, it is FAR from perfection: I still need to adjust the positioning of the sleeves so the top fits better. Mr. Baby's shirt needs to be adjusted too. I think I need to redo my pattern for the shirt, because the neckline is still too big. One of these days I will make a shirt for him that fits well.

Back view. Wow, knit is hard to sew! It likes to pull and go where you don't want it to go.
I also made a Lamb Pillow for Easter, and started making bunny finger puppets. :) Pictures of those to come!