Monday, April 30, 2007


This idea resonates deep within me. There are so many daily graces I take for granted. Will you join with me? If you want to learn more stop over at Holy Experience.
`1. Coffee made by my husband-before anything else is begun for the day
2. A pet rat, named Cornflower, who is actually cute
3. The smell of clothes taken off the line.
4. The baby learning to talk.
5. The baby holding the dog's bone up and commanding her to "seet".
6. Everyone's smiles over that cute baby.
7. Unexpected phone call that turns into just the adult conversation I needed for today.
9. Husband walking in the door after a long day.*sigh*

Sunday, April 29, 2007

tie one on

This apron is my entry for March/April's tie one on. The theme this time around was rick-rack. I spied this pattern in a special issue, devoted to aprons, of MaryJanesFarm magazine. A very dear friend allowed me to borrow it and I recently returned it with drool all over it. You can still order this issue and it is what I plan to do next! The apron has a lovely trim of rick-rack around the edges and the pockets. But I think the real show stopper is the faux smocked waistline.

I spent a couple hours curled up in the corner of the couch pulling the squares together. And it was in that position, I had an epiphany. A young lady was over while I was working on it and we had a conversation that went like this:
young lady:What are you making?
not so youny lady:An apron.
young lady:Are you going to sew the waistband on,too?
(waistband is not sewn on til faux smocking is complete)
not so young lady:Well . . .yes. How else would it get there?
young lady(laughing):You buy an apron with it already there.
not so young lady:Yes, but I like sewing. It is something that can not be undone.


So much of my life as a mother is just re-doing something that someone else has undone. I am speaking of the temporal things like dishes, laundry, clean/dirty/clean/dirty bodies, meals made,meals eaten and then dishes again . . . list goes on and on. But, I am also speaking of the eternal things. I spend so many hours in conflict resolution I could work for the goverment! Day in and day out, I mend rifts in broken relationships, listen to both sides and help each come to a resolution. I deposit words of praise and encoragement to build them up and gently (or sadly not so gently) point out blindspots and areas were their behavior hurts (others and themselves). I get glimpses of fruit- a quick apology, an unexpected blessing of servant's heart toward a sibiling; but for the most part, I am tilling and sowing. The reaping will come much later. Sewing is instant gratification. There is an end result. It actually becomes a finished task!(well,usually:) Sewing keeps me sane. It keeps my brain from turning into oatmeal. It nourishes me,too. The act of creating something from a bit of string and fiber is soothing .

Yes, sometimes the project does not go the way I want. But, then I can pull out the handy-dandy seam ripper and make it over. I can dig out all those misplaced threads and began again. This time a little slower and a bit more careful. How a I long for a seam ripper to tear out the misplaced words I have spoken. The unkind, thoughtless gestures of a big oaf of a grownup. *Sigh*. . . but always my children (and my husband) shower me with grace. And it is good.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


I love shoes . . . ALOT! I know this isn't the crazy,deep, dark seceret that warrants a post titled "Confessions". I know I am a girl and have a genetic excuse for my attraction to cute shoes. All the same, I try to suppress it. I think about all those starving kids in China or just the ones here who will need braces and somehow the shoes seem frivoulus. Very unimportant. I just need one pair of tennis shoes, one pair of yard shoes and one pair of dress shoes. Right??? Sigh . . .but I can not help myself. So, I play a little game with myself. If I buy myself shoes, they can not cost more than ten dollars and must not be new. I know the 'not new' thing will make some people a little squeamish but it doesn't bother me. Now, I do buy my tennis shoes new(because I do alot of walking and all the used ones are,well, really used) and if someone wants to buy me a new, shiny, higher priced shoe as a gift I will graciously bend the rules and accept them. I certainly would never want to offend anyone. This game allows all to be right with the world and allows me to have quite a collection of shoes. These babies were three dollars from the Good Will.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Coffee Pot Cozy

I love felting sweaters. I love the thrill of the hunt at the thrift stores, for just that right sweater. I love watching it change in the washing machine (though my husband doesn't appreciate the calls about the drain overflowing from felt-debris) and I love explaining to people how to felt sweaters. I always tell them you just do the exact opposite of everything your mother told you to do to care for wool!

So, a girl gets a new coffee pot and what does she have to do? Make a cozy for it,of course! I created this out of an adult black sweater and a child's Gap sweater. The floral design was made out of odds and ends I saved. (ALWAYS, save odds and ends!) I like this pattern because it exposes the spout and handle, as opposed to the cozy covering the whole pot.

You place the pot inside, using the attached band (I made it out of the cuffs from the child's sweater. They remain stretchy.) twist it around the top, like a ponytail holder. And ta-da!!!!You have a warm beverage for that long morning conversation, over coffee cake of course.

This was the perfect little project for sewing up by hand whilst knocked out on the couch. It would make a cute little purse,too. You could just sew the sides up, move that band up and add a little pocket inside. Hmmmmm . . . . I wonder if I have enough left. This is officially my first Whiplash entry. I am submitting it in the project categorey. And you can bet the farm, not my last:

Saturday, April 21, 2007


I was so excited. I had all three of my projects planned and cut out. I had all the materials arranged in neat little piles on my table. I had a nice, long,relaxing week ahead of me and then . . . I laid down on the couch and only managed to get up last night. Ugh!!!!!!! Sigh . . . I had some kind of sinus/head cold/extreme fatigue thing going on. So, back to the work table I go and it is nice to have everything sitting there waiting for me, all ready to go. Like the little coffee pot? It was our find on this past Thriftin' Tuesday.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


I have three things cooking in the pot right now.(and no,one of them is not a baby!) I have set some pretty high goals for myself this week and I am jazzed to see if I can do it. Check back later to see what I am able to pull off.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Delightful Weekend

My husband and I were able to get away overnight this past Friday. It is so important in this intense time of parenting (six kids between the ages of 11yrs down to 20 months, need I say more?) to get away and reconnect. We very rarely, get away longer than overnight, so we have created a series of questions to help us jump right into the heart of issues. We never want to waste a moment of our interrupt-free conversation. The cozy bed and breakfast we stay at really helps.

Usually when my hubbie and I slip away, we find ourselves at Chamblin BookMine.We are attracted by a magnetic force that eminates from the building . . . I guess from the books?!?!? We walked away with a tidy little stack. Fo those who are curious: Draw Real People! by Lee Hammond, Learn to Read Music in 10 Lessons by Terence Ashley, Journey to Jericho by Kaye England, Live Sound Reinforcement :Comprehensive Guide to P.A. & Music Reinforcement Systems & Technology by Scott Hunter Stark and The World of Fashion by Jay and Ellen Diamond. Any guesses on who got what???

We had to drag ourselves away from the treasure trove and race home to make presentable six kiddos for a long-awaited wedding. The Boy was ready to go five minutes after our arrival. He reclined on the couch and read while we dealt with the girls.Sometimes . . . he is just easier. ( Some people give dishes, I give softies:) Trio ready for their new home.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Thrifting Trance

Every Tuesday, the three younger girls and I, take The Boy to karate lessons. A Good Will and a Quigley House thrift store are conveniently located within a five minute drive of his dojo. Some days we just pick up a book or a "new" pair of jeans for someone BUT sometimes it is a very good haul. This past Tuesday was one of those trips.

Though our day for taking pictures was cloudy, my lovely models brighten up the shots. I love Fire King's colored dishes and my hubbie has a certain appreciation for inlay so I had to nab that tray. It is extremely sturdy and I have already served cookies on it!

We have five girls, all of whom are horse crazy. Even the youngest ,at 20months,will point to a horse and cry,"Horsie!!! See!!! See!!!". I scored almost 4 yards of fabric covered in English riding saddles. Included in this stack is a small piece of brown courdory and a brushed, black velvet-like piece.

I hardly ever purchase trim or buttons from "real" stores. This time I truly felt blessed. Those red things on the right are really long, industrial strength zippers. I have no clue what I will do with them. They were in the bag with the rest of the trim.

My only excuse for this purchase is we have five girls and every household with five girls needs a blanket with unicorns and rainbows. I would like to add a back and some handy triangle pockets (like the ones on Denyse Schmidt's beach blanket). I think it would be a perfect keep-in-the-car blanket.

This bundle of sweetness has won over all the ladies at the thrift stores we visit. She greets everyone with an enthusiastic wave and sometimes even a "Hello!". The gals over at the Quigley House thrift store always manage to find chocolate to hand out. Happy thriftin' adventures!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


This little guy is almost done. I have been taking breaks checking out Softies Central for inspiration.

Monday, April 9, 2007


She requested no presents but I did not plan to be done with this third attempt just in time for the party!The first two had their innards removed and were recycled as my son thought the first was a dinosaur and the second resembled the Loch Ness Monster. I am working on a fourth as a planned present. I constructed it a bit differently but the shape is the same. I have started adding my trademark to my projects. It tickles me to stich those three little letters on.

Friday, April 6, 2007


It was a glorious day of exploring and enjoying being with daddy, on his day off, at the beach. I have had a love affair with the beach since I was a young girl. I used to dream that heaven dwelled in the place where the ocean met the sky and as an angry teenager I used to flip my cigarette butts into the ocean, imagining my dreams floating away as helplessly as that butt. And now . . . today . . .I could only marvel at the amazing grace of my King. My six walking,breathing wonders and a best friend(and ummm a bit more) to share it all with. Hug your loved ones around you close, listen to them, marvel at them!

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Creating With Children

I was going through my pictures yesterday and discovered these photos. The kiddos have spent quite a bit of time watching me arrange and move around the yard(to find GOOD light) objects I have wanted to photograph. They also have been the "objects" themselves. I am very much the amateur when it comes to photography. It is just somehting I goof around with. It is not a skill,unlike sewing, that I have even remotely considered intentionally passing on. But here we have someone purposefully looking for GOOD light and dressing up their favorite objects for a photo session. The background on the first horse delights me!!! Which brings me to my first point I would like to make about creating with children . . .the most important thing you can do is create in front of them. They are always watching. ALWAYS!

Wednesday, April 4, 2007


I found this sweet pattern at Martha Stewart. I made these lined, as I could not stand the unfinished edges everywhere. They are heavier this way and I do not think they will be worn much longer as summer has arrived. (There is no spring here!) Now that I have my new toy,(not my transaction,only pic could find,someone got a VERY good deal) I will be experimenting with some lighter fabrics and some knits.Of course, I made a few adjustments to the pattern. I also added lace trim and used more bias tape than was called for:) I love bias tape. I made a smaller set for a new friend with matching pants but missed getting pictures of them. I want to make the longer version for the younger girls,soon.