Previous month:
February 2009
Next month:
April 2009

March 2009

(Friday already)

Another week ticked by in a flurry of doctor visits (one for me, two for Fidge), hair appointments (two for the girls), house painter estimates (six so far), and projects.  We're at home today with a fever (Fidge) and pending dramatic weather (snow, 6-11 inches, tomorrow). 

Little JuneBug is in full belly assault, tumbling and punching and twitching all the time, sweet thing.  I'm at that point where people are more confident assuming I'm pregnant and asking questions.  We have less than 13 weeks to go and that really doesn't seem like enough time to get everything done...I haven't even begun to plan what to do with the umpteen boxes of baby clothes in my garage.  They need to come down and be rifled through (pulling the gender neutral stuff out first, of course) and washed.  We need to clean up all the new baby stuff that's been in storage.  And maybe get the nursery together.

So now you're all caught up.

I finished something this week that I am very eager to show, but it's a surprise.  

12 Square block :: February :: For Melissa

It's not this (late) Twelve Square quilt block for Melissa

I finished this little log cabin square (her instructions) yesterday, supplying my own polka dot fabric (from this skirt, which I still love and am hoping will get to wear again someday).  I still have a few days left in March to get caught up on the other block for Tracy sitting in my sewing room, and I am determined to make that happen soon.  (maybe this weekend?)

Have the parentheses made you dizzy yet?  Because my eyes are crossed.  Of course it could also be from our crazed weather patterns which cannot decide to be 65 & sunny or 35 & blizzard-ing.   Lotsa snow tomorrow.  On Sunday it's supposed to be back up to 46, and Monday, the 50s... Nuts!  I think I'm going to stick to a plan of chai (decaf) tea, couch snuggles and pajama pants.

Enjoy your weekend, friends. xoxox

Monday Madness

so pretty. thank you, self. :)

Just a few random bits today. 

First of all, thank you!  I never expected such an overwhelming response to my little pillowcase skirts!!  I'm afraid this week is coming at me fast and furiously, and I probably won't get back to everyone.  However, here are a few answers to the questions in there...

1) I get 99% of my pillowcases and linens at three local thrift shops in town.  I do try to go weekly, and I rarely pay more than $1 per item.

2) The rolled hem on the yellow skirt was more like a teeny tiny sergered thing that was already there, so I just used it.  I didn't do it!  The cool thing about these skirts is you don't need to really sew anything but the waistline.

3) I do have several more projects lined up.  There is no end to the stuff you can do with these pretty, affordable linens.  When you open up a pillowcase, it really is about a full yard of fabric.  If you are lucky and don't have obvious directional patterns you can do about anything.  And if you have a nicely embroidered or crocheted edge, that's a bonus.  ;)


Have you seen what Kristena @ Thimbly Things has been up to lately?  She's been going through her closet, refashioning things with reckless abandon and amazing results.  If you are even the slightest bit curious about sewing for yourself or looking at your old clothes in a new way, you have to see all of her posts from last week, and the top she posted today...


The photo doesn't have anything to do with this post.  I picked up some roses at Aldi the other day for 3.99 and they have been delighting me every time I enter the kitchen.  They are actually white, but I caught this during the evening sun...


I am loving Facebook.  We moved around a lot as kids, with a dad in the military.  We made friends all over the country and lost them... I was pretty good about letter writing through school, but once I went off to college, I'm not sure I even had the cash for stamps that weren't going to bills.  Anyway, it was all long before everyone had email accounts and could keep in touch in milliseconds...

Now my sister and I are reconnecting with old friends and it has been so much fun.  I even spent 2 hours on the phone with my best friend from the 9th grade not too long ago.  I have to say I love this internet thing.  I can't even count the number of friends of made through the blogging community alone.  When I add to that all of the long-lost friends that I never thought I'd hear from again, it blows my mind. 


I did get some crafty on this weekend.  But it's a bit of a hush-hush kind for now, so you'll have to wait.  More is coming though... I went shopping on Saturday and came home with about five different dress ideas for my favorite 3 year old.


Have a great week.  (And Go Tigers.)

pillowcase-ish skirts

Thanks for all the duvet love.  It's just further proof that there is no end to what you can do with vintage linens.

What, you need more proof?  Okay, here goes.

$1 kitchen cafe curtains, now a skirt

This little skirt I made from thrifted kitchen cafe curtain panels.  The daisies were actually on a diagonal cut, but I was able to make wide enough rectangles on the bias to pull together a basic loop. 

It was already finished with a roll hem, but I thought it was still a little sheer to wear alone.  So I added a second tier from a basic white pillowcase (another thrift score), stitched them together at the top and added a simple casing for the elastic.  The ric-rac was a last minute addition, too.

tier closeup

This second one is more basic.  I cut it to the desired length, made a casing for the elastic and called it done.


And then decided to add some lacy trim over the pillowcase hem line, so it isn't so obvious.  I love the print on this one.

So that's it.  About $3 for two skirts, excluding the trim and elastic I had on hand.  And about an hour of work.  Those are my kind of projects.

Fidget's got a brand new bed

The girls were gone this weekend, so I took advantage of some extra time and finished up Fidget's duvet.

duvet, complete

I really like how it turned out.  Like I mentioned before, I used two thrifted vintage sheets and added a ruffle of fabric from Heather Bailey's Pop Garden line.  The room was already painted yellow and green, so I wanted the ruffle to pick those colors up, too.  Plus, ruffles are so darned charming.

See how that top sheet has the floral edge?  It's just at the top of the sheet, meant for showing when you fold it over.  I thought it was perfect for the top underside of the duvet, as I tend to fold them back when I make a bed.

That's the netting from her side rails you see on the bottom.  It's covering the light yellow eyelet bedskirt (also thrifted).  I'll have to try and get a better shot of that next time.

ruffly kerfluffle

The bedroom furniture is that set I mentioned not too long ago, the 1970's era cream and gold 'french country' girls set that was featured in all the department store catalogs of my youth.  It was a steal at a local used furniture shop and I cannot believe how solid the pieces are after all these years. (Well, I can.  They don't make furniture like that anymore, unless you are planning on investing in furniture.  And that I'm not doing, especially for something that will probably see nail polish and markers and shoe scuffs over the next few years).  A few nicks and scratches, sure.  I'll take them.

This is the dresser.  The jewelry box in the middle was mine as a little girl.  It has the ballerina (now with a missing arm) that spins, and a satin aqua interior.  Fidget loves that music box.   My name is on the bottom, scrawled in pen.  I went through a phase for a few years where I labeled everything.


The lamp base was something I picked up on ebay back when I was setting up the nursery.  I'm glad it still works in this room.

through the looking glass, Fidget's bed.

There is another piece, the desk + hutch, that is still waiting for a new chair.  It looks lonely without the chair, so I thought I'd save that for another post after I've found one. 

There are still some wall pictures to move around that don't quite line up with the new arrangement.  Most of the art in her room is taken from my old hardcover Mother Goose book that was falling apart.  I always loved the pen and watercolor illustrations, so I clipped them out and framed them for the nursery.  At the time I had bought some frames that I intended to paint, but never got around to it.  They are all trimmed in a gold that happens to match the trim on the new furniture.  I like it when things work out that way.

It's gorgeous and 74 today here in Kansas City.  Spring has been teasing us with more days like this lately, and I love it.  Enjoy yours, whatever it may be.

Making me smile today.

So it was over a year ago that hubs and I went on a 12 day trip to Hawaii.  Oh, yes, it was amazing.  We stayed in Maui, Kauai, and met up with some friends for a conference in Oahu.


Maui was beautiful and fun and reminded me a little of the artsy beach towns of Southern California, only humid and with hardly any traffic.


Oahu (Honolulu) was so industrial that it just felt like a big city.  (In fact, the office-organized Luau we went to was around the corner from a scrap metal yard.  Ambience, I tell you.)  

But Kauai was different from the minute we got to the car rental place.

wild chickens

First of all, there were wild chickens.  Everywhere. 

There was a hen chasing her chicks across the entry to the Hertz rental place and they almost went inside when the automatic doors opened.  No one seemed to notice or care.  There is reason for the chickens, of course, but the very presence of them was just funny.  As was the fact that Hertz tried to give us a Lincoln Continental.  In Kauai.  Which is the island on which they filmed a lot of Jurassic Park.  Think waterfalls and cliffs and narrow curvy mountain roads.  Yes, it screams Give me a Continental. 

hawaii na pali coast

Once we got the vehicle situation fixed, we shooed some chickens out of the way and got into a Montero that had just been turned in.  They hadn't even had time to clean it out yet.  Fine by us. Sunroof, check.  Windows, down. 

We took off in search of our hotel.

kauai - lihue coast

But not before we realized that the previous renters had left us the coolest gift.  Over the speakers, Amos Lee began singing in his happy-go-lucky-mellow-beach-guy sound.  Someone had left a copy of his CD and it became the sountrack for the rest of our trip.  It was perfect. 

To this day, I can't hear Amos without thinking about the drive along the Kauai coast, warm breeze flowing, the yummy Hawaiian smell of flowers and pineapple in the air.


fresh pineapple

So when I heard him just now on my Pandora station (on a Madeleine Peyroux station?  Who knew he'd pop up there?), I was instantly transported.

Thanks, Amos. (And thanks, random traveller. It was such a happy surprise.)

And if you need more Hawaii photos, you can see the lot here.

on the mend, it seems

Get ready for some randomness.  I hope you didn't come here for a carefully written post.

My head is still readjusting to operating in the real world, where people don't sleep for 18 hours a day and then sleep more.  Oh, and the daylight savings thing.  Can I just say how I am just not on board for that being so darned early in the year?? See, I don't really care if I get daylight until 7pm, because it's still 40 degrees outside right now.  We can't really enjoy it.  And I was really enjoying seeing the sun making her appearance nice and early there for a few weeks.  It made getting out of bed easier at 6:30 am.  Not so much right now.  It's pitch dark these days.  [OK.  /end of DST rant]

now it's mommy's playroom

{ If this room looks familiar to you, it is.  It used to be the playroom, but we made a switch right before Christmas, and put the playroom on the main level.  This makes so much more sense, as Fidget wasn't really into going into the basement by herself and playing down there, no matter how nice the room.  However, since we made the switcheroo at such a hectic time of year, everything just got thrown down there and I haven't found my groove in that room yet.  }

In other news, Fidget is sleeping the night through in her new-to-her four poster bed.  A couple weeks ago, right around her birthday, she decided to wear panties and moved into her big girl bed within days of each other.  Crazy.  Three is a big year.

Her new bed needs a duvet cover, and since I don't really want to go nuts redecorating her bedroom, I'm working with what I've got.  And you know what?  I've got a lot of vintage linens. 

longest ruffle ever

The pink and white sheet on the bottom left is going to be used for the top and I have a white sheet with a rose pattern that will work for the back.  Reversible, even...  To this, for some unknown reason, I decided what the duvet needed was the longest ruffle in the world, around three of the edges. 

I decided early on that I wanted it to be folded over and gathered, so there wouldn't be an obvious top and bottom to the ruffle when the bed is a rumpled mess.  (Because it is, so often.  It's hard to work around toddler bed rails, isn't it?  Poor thing does have a history of falling out of beds, though, so they are a necessity for now.)  So the ruffle strip was like 20 yards long of double thick medium weight cotton.  Still with  me?  Who wants to hand-gather now?!!

I then decided I would try the ruffler foot that my mother gave to me a while back when she decided it didn't work on her machine. 

I had no instructions, but used that link above to set it all up and get things working properly.  I was all giddy with excitement and delusional, thinking I would zip this ruffle out in three minutes and everything would genius perfection!  My husband heard a WOOOHOOOO!!! after I had done my first test ruffle.  I even showed him the result.  (He did not woohoo.)

Unfortunately, I don't think my new favorite sewing machine accessory liked the double layers of fabric.  Or me.  At 3/4 of the way through, I had bent my third needle, pulled out umpteen snags and re-aligned fabric so many times that I finally gave up.  So I now have the last couple yards to hand-gather. I'm still ahead, considering all of the work the ruffler did, however arduous that process was.  For the record, I don't think I'll be using it again for a long time. 

the ruffler foot's handiwork

But see how pretty and even those gathers are?  I took a video of the ruffler in action, but I'm not sure of the quality.  Interested in seeing that one at all?  It really is a cool little gadget.  In theory.

Other randomness

  • I'm having fun at picnik

  • I'm 25 weeks along.  That means a baby is really coming.  I better start getting my act together.

  • I think we are going to join a CSA this summer and enjoy fresh local food.  I'm excited.


...around the gills this week.

green around the gills

If I were officially playing along with green week, this would be my entry for today.  For the last three days I've been in bed, coughing, sneezing, aching and moaning, armed with tissues, cough drops, breathe right strips and tylenol, because preggos can't take much of anything else.  Yes, I'm whining.  I'm miserable. 

I just got up to make some soup and tea, and thought I'd post while everything is cooling down a bit.  Oh dear, I let the dog in and it's g-g-g-orgeous outside.  Just the kind of day I want to spend in bed, hacking my lungs out, aching from head to toe.

The office keeps sending me emails, even though I've told them I cannot cope.  That's what happens when you work from home.

For those who are wondering, that is a china cabinet next to my bed, yes.  I love it.

Thanks for all the sweet comments on Fidget's pink birthday party.  :)  It really was a wonderful time.  I'm thankful that this virus hit this week and not last. 

Back, hopefully soon, with cheery upbeat things to say and pretty photos that don't involve snotrags. Promise.

the pink party

For Fidget's third birthday, the only request was 'pink'.  So a pink gingham tablecloth and polka dot napkins followed.  And balloons.  And streamers.  And a cake. And little bowls of pink candies.  That was it.  Three year olds are pretty easy to please.  They must be. Because just before we started everything, she said to me, " Mommy, thanks for making my party."  Melted my heart like buttah.




more pink

I was particularly happy with the cake.  I used a yellow cake mix for the three tiers, but made several batches of the real homemade bad-for-you-but-oh-so-good white crisco frosting for a nice thick layer.  I followed Inchmark's Dot Cake directions for the royal icing dots.  What an easy trick.  There were even some dots left over for the cupcakes we took to school today.


The party's over but the balloons remain.  I love that birthday haze that lingers for the few days afterwards, where there is still cake to snack on and remants of the fun we had can still be found around the house... 

Here's to another year, sweet Fidgie.  You make momma proud.