Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Hungry Planet

The Hungry Planet by Peter Menzel and Faith D'Aluisio
I checked this book out at the library this week and I have had a hard time putting it down. It is a book about 30 families all around the world and what they eat in a week. It is amazing how different we all are. The other thing that has struck me is how some have so much and some have so little.

I think about my own kitchen and feel guilty over the waste that sometimes happens. Especially when I think about how some people on the planet have to struggle for every drop of water and every morsel of food.

I wonder how much reading this book will change the way I look at the food we have and if it will help me and my family take care of the resources we are so fortunate to have.

I am asking myself how I can make a difference...

I encourage you to try to find this book at your library. It is a lovely book and my children have poured over the pictures.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Postal Presents From My Friend Henny

I had the most wonderful present come in the mail from my friend Henny from Indonesia. It was two beautiful pieces of Batik fabric from her country. I can't wait to make some wonderful things with them. They are so pretty.

The blue is a printing batik fabric is called “batik cap” (printed by the machine.) The flowers on it are so cheery and happy. I want to make something for both Hope and myself out if.

The grey fabric is a “batik tulis”, it means someone really draw the motif by hand in a cotton fabric. The grey one is positively gorgous. It is hard to show how detailed it is. I plan to make something only for myself because I want to treasure the fabric forever :)

Henny was so sweet and wrote out how to care for each piece of fabric. Which I am so glad she did so that I don't harm it.

Even the bag that the material came in was interesting to Hope who wanted to store her treasures in it.

She also included the prettiest bookmark. I had to store the bookmark up high because Hope ran off with it as soon as she saw it. She called it "treasure." It really is... The gold embossing makes it all shiny and sparkling.

Best of all she sent me the cutest little notecard that she had quilled herself. She is so incredibly talented. I love this card so much. It is so cheery and I love to look at it when I am sitting at my desk.
I love that we met in blog land. It would be so wonderful if she could come to visit. I would love to laugh with her about how much we have in common, even though we live so far apart.
Henny has two wonderful blogs. One is about fun things like crafts and things she likes and the other is all about family and kids.

Thank you Henny... It really is the sweetest kindest thing ever... <_>

Little Pink Cast

I haven't blogged or read blogs in weeks... When Hope went on a trip with daddy she fell and broke her elbow... I have been driving back and forth to the doctor which is an hour away... She will be getting off her cast in the beginning of October. It is amazing how something so small can disrupt the way a family works.
Hopefully this week I will get back to blogging and sewing. I can't wait to see what I have been missing :)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Little Room in the Closet

When Hope was ready to move into a room of her own, there wasn't a spot for her with the other kids, so I decided to make her a room in my walk-in closet. My neighbor had given me the idea when she made a little nursery for her newborn... It was a big job to remove all the things that had accumulated in there... Somehow, there was way more then just clothes in there :)~

Then I took off the door and hung curtains on pressure rods so that I could close them when she is sleeping.

I used a toddler bed with her old crib mattress. Because there is an angled wall in the closet, the bed had to be built in place.

I made her bedding by cutting a twin quilt in half and binding it with blanket binding. She wanted a princess bed so I hung a set of pink curtains from the rod that used to hold my clothing. They can be closed for a little hideout effect if she is in the mood for a fort. A little step stool also doubles as a night stand for her to put things on.

I hung a floor cloth on the wall, that I had painted a long time ago, above the bed.

A bug nightlight from IKEA has a nice glow in the middle of the night...

I used a pressure shower rod to hang her clothing from above the shelving along the top of the closet.

I used bins with their lids removed for extra clothing storage...

The built-in shelving made a nice place to store toys and books...

Including her tea tray with her tea set... which is always in use :)

This has been a wonderful way to give Hope her own space and it is very easy to keep clean.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Getting Rid of Clutter

Hope has been gone for five days and I thought I would sew and sew and sew.... However, I made one outfit and realized that it wasn't as fun to sew when she wasn't here to try things on. Things don't look the same on the hanger:)~

So I decided to go on a massive throwing & cleaning out spree instead. So far I have gotten rid of this much clutter (not including the bags and bags I threw out in the trash bin.) I even took apart my bed and cleaned and vacuumed under it. When I cleaned under Hopes bed I found a large collection to gummy bears that had hardened like rocks...

I am going to continue on today and tomorrow... It feels so good... I don't know why I let clutter build up so much...

Monday, August 11, 2008

Fun Books From the Library

In the middle of this week, Hope will be heading on a road trip with her daddy. I plan on using my toddler-free time very wisely. I have so much sewing to do. I want to make new curtains for the living room. I have the fabric forever. It is just a lot of material to work with when someone with little fingers is running all over my sewing area.

Today at the library I found these fun books. I want to try to use some of the ideas from them when I am working on my Wardrobe Refashion clothes.
Fabric Jewelry by Teresa Searle

The New Crewel by Katherine Shaughnessy
I am hoping to get a lot of sewing done!!!
I also want to work on a time schedule for my family for fall... We usually do a lot better with a plan for our time then when we just go about things willy-nilly. If any of you follow schedules I would love some tips on planning fun things into our schedule. It seems like the fun family things are the first to get skipped when we are just running all over...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

County Fair

We visited our county fair on it's last day. I hate to admit it but we went mostly because of the food :)

We didn't even go near the carnival rides. Hope had so much fun riding on the pony rides. She was so serious when she was on the pony's back and as soon as she was off she wanted to go again.

The animals were a lot of fun...The baby pigs were so cute... Mama pig... just laid there sleeping.

Hope didn't want to leave the miniature horse... They were so cute and they would come right up to be petted.
I was surprised at how brave she was when she was watching the draft horses. She was barely as tall as their knees:)

I am glad we went... It brought back a lot of memories of being little.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The War in My Sewing Area

I have been sewing since I was around 5 and I am turning 41 next month.... I have done a lot of sewing along the way... My mom started me out... with little scraps and string and yarn... Then I made simple items like aprons.

Then I learned a very high end professional sewing manor from a woman in our neighborhood. She was our not only my neighbor, but my 4-H leader and she was very strict. By the age of 10 or 11 I could put in a long zipper, make my own bias tape, sew buttonholes and create a pleasant outfit. She was extremely fussy about trimming strings, as well as, keeping the area very clean.

When I was 14, I went to work with a woman who created cheer leading outfits. I learned how to create retail outfits from measurements and how to block pieces. While I learned a lot of tricks of the trade, I also learned a lot of bad habits when I was sewing there. Speed was very important and we were told to throw our strings to the ground. If a mistake was made it was set aside for another time of the day. I was not to stop overall production to fix an item. It would slow us down to much.

Later when I was in high school and later I worked in theatre as a costume maker and I learned so much about design. How to use fabric to its greatest advantage.... You will hear me say along the way how important the hang of the fabric is in order to make a lovely item. I also learned there is nothing I can't sew.

I have sewn a great deal over the years and I have created many patterns or altered patterns severally.

Here we are up to now my current sewing style... and there are times when I am sewing that I feel I have a little sewing devil on one shoulder, hurrying me along, encouraging me to through scraps of material, paper and bits of string to the ground... After all it can be cleaned up later. My little devil tries to convince me to take shortcuts on more important issues as not ironing as I sew or not fixing a tiny mistake because no one will notice...

On the other shoulder I have sewing angel. Telling me to keep my pins in the cushion. To iron absolutely every time. To be religious about cutting every little string... My sewing angel tells me to put my scissors away and to keep my rotary cutter out of the hands of children... She tells me to measure and then measure again to keep the frustrations of mistakes at a minimal...

There are times when I feel bad about the trail of string and scraps that I have thrown to the ground... I also feel guilty when I get impatient and throw away a small scrap rather then recycle it.

I guess you can say.... I am sew good and sew bad... Are You?

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


I have been very discouraged...

Somehow, the last few weeks have left me spinning around in circles, wondering what I have been doing... I have not been able to complete anything, read anything or keep anything clean... Plus my plants aren't watered...

Usually I follow a list to get things done... but my list has remained blank. I usually can accomplish an incredible amount of things in a day... Now I feel slightly off kilter... I feel like I am blocked... I need to figure out what is causing all these bumps in the road... but where do I start? My girlfriend Tamara would say... If you don't know where to start... Start anywhere... I guess that is what I need to do... But it all seems like too much...

Here is one of the questions that roll around in my head... "Is trying to go green suppose to be so hard?" "How do I get a simple life when things seem so complicated? "

At least tomorrow is another day :)
I am sorry I haven't had fun blogs... or interesting tid bits... there are little piles of ideas just waiting to be finished.... Good stuff is coming soon :)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Yummy No Bake Peanut Butter Cookies

This is such a yummy recipe that I found on
Coconut & Lime

You have to try these... they are so easy... and they help me to use up things that are building up in my pantry. I really hope you try them... If you love peanut butter and oats.... you will think this is a yummy one to combined:)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

My First Award

My dear blogging friend Henny has awarded me with this wonderful award...

It is such a wonderful privilage...

Thank you Henny :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

New dress...

Another refashioned dress... This skirt was from a thriftstore free box... I love how it feels soft and worn... I plan to do some needlework on the bottom... I just haven't decided what it will look like....

Monday, July 21, 2008

My Notebook

My black notebook is a wonderful place for me to keep my creative ideas. I used to start and stop notebooks as my moods changed... Instead of using the same one. I lost a lot of ideas that way. Then one day I decided to force myself not to change notebooks just because my book had become less then perfect.

(Coffee Spill)
Inside have drawn ideas from library books. I write the title, author, and call number. That away I can find more information if I need it or need to give credit to the creator of the original idea.

(Rough Drawings with Ideas)
I put my sewing measurements and notes about patterns I have designed. That way I know what needs to be done the next time I sew it

(Little Patterns or drawings for Shrinky Dinks)

I keep thinking I need to write down ideas I see on the internet, along with the website, but I haven't gotten around to being that organized. There are times when I barely get to read my blogs are sit down with my computer. I am afraid if I added something to it I would never get things done. However, I think it is a good idea :)

Little Linen Remake

Another refashioned piece of clothing finished.

This little top was made out of a linen blouse from the laundry room free box...

I like the little embroidery flowers:)

The Final Outfit for the Applique Bird

I am in the midst of trying to use up old fabrics and at the same time I am trying to make clothing out of old clothes by refashioning them. I have been wanting to make something out of this old fabric from the thrift store for awhile. I thought it would make a really cute little swing top for Hope to run around in... but when I opened it up it had some little holes in it...This should have made me stop in my tracks.. but instead I marched on and cut the pattern out around the little moth bites...

That would have been fine if the problems stopped there... but instead I discovered the fabric was so stretchy if I wasn't careful it would be all wonky and pulled... Very aggravating...Still I march on... I made this pocket that I showed in my Applique Bird Post

I also made a little matching button.

Finished Project... It wrinkles almost as soon as it is ironed. Quite maddening... But on the bright side bird is cute :)