Sunday, December 30, 2007

'Tis the Season!

I have to start off this post by saying how much I love this little blog world :) Check out the goodies that Krista Walker sent last week! She was one of the winners of the Japanese Fat Quarters set that I had in last month's give-away and loved them so much that she sent a little "thank you" package chock-full of fun (mini purse, business card holder, coffee cozy and dipes/wipes holder)! I think that Sydney will be fighting me to use the mini purse (on the left) - it matches her pants!

Before I forget, Happy Holidays everyone! And for everyone who celebrated Christmas last week, I hope you had a fun day filled with carols, cookies and friends / family :) We spent Christmas Eve day with my in-laws in Boston and had such a fun time - a big part of the day's success was that the kids were incredible! Sydney was a champ and gobbled up all of the attention (I finished the skirt!)

... and Ben was in bliss being held all day by everyone. Definitely a ladies man! Christmas wasn't really as fun - hubby was on call at the hospital and spent most of the afternoon there. Sydney was cranky from not napping the day before and generally being off schedule, and Ben decided to start an eating marathon at 2 am (and didn't stop until ~ 10 that night). We did have fun opening gifts and hanging out all day - just wish we were all well-rested!

I didn't get to make as many hand-made gifts this year as I'd have liked to, but there's always next year :) One of my favorite gifts are these fun coasters (from this book):

I love them! The perfect little something for anyone! I used 2 layers of batting and added a layer of PROCARE (the stuff that I use as the inner liner of my wetbags) to help make them waterproof. They aren't flimsy at all - I definitely recommend making them! I also made a matching bird. I tried to be true to the bluebird and give him a tan chest and white lower body... kind of silly, but my Dad is nuts over bluebirds and he'd be disappointed if he saw that I gave him a white chest :)

I'm not crazy about how he turned out - I haven't sewn a ton of "little" things like this before, so I found the smallness of it a little hard to manage. It is an adorable pattern though, so I'll definitely try it again. This gift set went to Auntie Re, one of Frank's Aunts who now lives in the nicest assisted living facility I have honestly ever seen (and I've seen a ton!).

I did finally finish Auntie Lou's scarf - I flipped out though one night when I lost one of my knitting sticks... I had a couple inches left to go! Luckily I found it under the sofa:). It has a keyhole opening at the end so you can stick the other end through it and keep it snug against you.

Hubby loved the scarf so much that he wants a "really long one" for himself. I've got about 10 inches done so far and a loooooooong way to go!

I do have a few other gifts to share, but I have to wait until they've been gifted (I'll be seeing my family in NJ/PA in the new year - can't wait!)

Didn't know if you all had checked out Amy Butler's Free Patterns lately, but she's got some FABULOUS things posted there!

Off to bed now... sweet dreams everyone! We'll be getting lots more of this stuff tonight...

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Mark of a New England Mom

I was at the dentist earlier today, looked down at my legs and saw this:

Hmm... Couldn't quite figure it out, but then it dawned on me - that's just the level that the running board hits my legs when I reach into the back to get the kids in and out of their carseats. I am so done with winter already and it's only December.

I've finally shipped out the last of my wholesale and large custom orders and have started to work on Christmas gifts. Auntie's scarf is 2/3 the way done (I've figured out how to knit while nursing!). Hoping to also get a few cute things made from this book and this book.

Last night I thought that I'd be able to finish up this twirl skirt for Sydney...

...but ran out of the cute snowball trim. URGH!!!! Luckily there is a Joanne's near the dentist, so I was able to pop in there with Ben after my appointment. I needed a little retail therapy after that visit... he cried for most of the time (I was having the prep work done for a crown, so we were there for a while). The women at the office were incredible though, and held /walked him the entire time that I was there. Made their days to have a baby around - and I think they also like seeing who was the best at settling him down :)

Before I sign off, I have to share a new pattern line that Adrienne recently introduced me to: Montessori By Hand. I love the Reading Pillow idea - quite clever. Meg, the designer, will be releasing a cute new apron pattern as well in Jan - looks quite femmy, yet functional!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

All prizes have been accounted for, so it's safe to resume to posting again :) That was so much fun that I think I'll start hosting monthly give-aways. Stay tuned!

As most of you know, we have a relatively new baby here at home with us (2 month old Ben). I'd be lost without my baby carriers (Baby Bjorn Active and my sling) - he spends most of the day being carried and he (and I) love it! I made a sling last week for a buddy up here and really like how it turned out. It has a padded shoulder, regular tail, velcro pocket on the tail (for keys/cellphone), and sling rings. Pretty simple design, but comfy and fashionable.

I'm thinking of carrying them on my website next year -


Crafting news? Check out these adorable elephants by Ljungbergs:

And.... the Kimberly Bag Pattern by Amy Butler should be available in a week or so -finally another bag pattern with a zipper!

Monday, December 03, 2007

And the winners are.....

Thanks everyone who entered the drawing - I loved reading your comments and checking out your blogs!

The process: I entered everyone into a WORD document (one person emailed to be added so I added her comment at the time she wrote), assigned a number to everyone and then used the random number picker to select the winners of the drawing (I was going to cut out everyone's entries and have Sydney pick them, but that seemed a bit labor intensive and not too environmentally friendly - besides, I think that you all wanted to find out before the end of the year who won!)

The 3 winners of the Apron Pattern are:
1) Kate (#1)
2) Shannon (#2)
3) Michelle P (#3)

The 2 winners of the Japanese fabric fat quarters are:
1) Krista Walker (#44)
2) Melody (jefalody) (#15)

and the winner of the SIMPLE GIFTS TO STITCH BOOK is...

Kath (#38)

Please email your mailing addresses to and I'll get your goodies out to you this week :)

I'm starting to think that life is starting to return to normal (whatever that is...). Ben is sleeping well and Sydney has taken to being a big sister like a champ. Some days are rougher than others, but we're getting by pretty well and have some kind of vague schedule that we follow day-to-day. I'm really fine as long as I get to do some "stuff" during nap time- get orders together and in the mail, sew, email, etc. Hate to say it, but I often don't even pick up the phone during nap...

Anyways, this past weekend we got into the swing of things and had a belated Turkey Day feast with hubby's sis (we had to cancel our plans due to a nasty cold that Syd and I got the night before we were supposed to leave) and cut down our Christmas tree. It was a balmy 10 degrees here (probably less than 0 with the wind chill), so we basically chopped down the first respectable looking tree we saw.

Trimming the tree this year took no time at all b/c (1) it is a pretty small tree - it looked much bigger in the field... and (2) I had to keep the lower third void of any breakables b/c of our little elf who likes to hug and dance with the tree every morning when she gets up...

I don' t know about you all, but one of my favorite parts of Christmas is pulling out all of the old decorations and goodies that have been collected over the years. Ornaments are the most special to me - here are a couple of gems that need to be shared :)

I grew up in a blue bi-level home that was built in the 70's and one year a grade school art project was to make a pressed tin (?) ornament of your home. I probably colored it with Sharpies (I doubt those fruity smelly ones would have such staying power) and I love it. Not sure why, but I do. Probably b/c I was lucky in that this was the only house I ever lived in until I went to college... and my parents sill live there! The color has since changed, but it's still home.

This next one just cracks me up. It's supposed to be a self-portrait stuffy (I think I actually sewed it by hand?)... Scary... The sad thing is that I can't draw much better than this now!

My third favorites are yearly ornaments that mom makes - there is a cranberry and pink one in the first ornament pic and a green and yellow one in the pic above. For some reason I have 2 "1997" ones. Don't tell her...!

I just realized that I haven't shared any pictures of the "new" back room! The long and the short of it is that the room was poorly built, so we had it gutted and rebuilt it from the studs out. Also added a room underneath it, so we have storage next to the garage (yipppee!!). We LOVE this room and it's finished at just the right time (we got 2 feet of snow today!). We still need to hang some pictures, and I'd like to make some quick x-mas pillow covers, but so far we're happy with it. The guys are still working on the new back deck - pics to come!

Here's the view from standing in the kitchen, looking out to the left:

And to the right...:

And from sitting on the sofas in the last picture:

On the craft front, I've been trying to get some wholesale orders finished up so I can get to the fun stuff - Christmas gifts! I have started working on a scarf for Frank's Aunt, and I can't say enough fantastic things about the BABY ALPACA GRANDE yarn from Plymouth that I'm using. I scored this yummy yarn on EBAY about a month ago and am in love with it... Luckily Christmas is a few weeks away b/c it's taking me a while to get this one done. I've tried knitting while nursing Ben and it wasn't pretty. I can do a lot while nursing, but knitting is tough...

If you've been wondering about Amy Butler's new SWEET LIFE BAGS, I'll tell you from first hand experience that they are wonderful! The one shown above is the ASHBURY in Pewter and it's a fantastic knitting bag. Tons of pockets inside and tons of room - check it out!

Speaking of Amy Butler, I just added the fantastic LOTUS TUNIC and CAMI pattern to my EBAY store!!!

and restocked the new Sophia Bag Pattern (oh how I just want to have a day to myself to make this!):

I've got to scoot - it's almost midnight... Have a great night everyone! :) Kris