Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Mail's Here!

Just a quick post to show some of the great mail I got this week.My Sweet Goodness Swaps package arrived from Mary. In it I found a fun Halloween pillowcase, a Halloween brag book and some great chocolate! Thanks Mary!
And my buttons from the Embroidered Button Swap. Aren't they all just fabulous? I'm especially in love with that the one that has a button embroidered on the button. What a fun little idea!

Hopefully I'll be back tonight or tomorrow with some fun pics of the kids in their Harry Potter get-up! Happy Halloweeen!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Halloween WIP

I'm still finishing up on the boy's Halloween costumes. This is how some of the different parts look today:Any guesses yet? There is a dead giveaway in one of the pics.

There's not much left to do one these. I would have been in trouble if we had had any pre-Halloween activities, but I think everything will be finished in plenty of time for tomorrow. Hopefully the boys will cooperate and we will get some good pics of the finished product. Happy Haunting everyone!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

the past few days

Have I been a little absent lately? I've had a pretty big project going the past few days - this quilt! These new fabrics from my friend Sandi are debuting at Quilt Market this weekend. Aren't they fabulous? I'm loving how they look in the golden morning light. But, I can truthfully say they look amazing in any sort of light. Go tell your local quilt shop to get some!

And if this quilt combined with more quality time with my chicos has made me be here a little less, I apologize. But, making this quilt is putting a big smile on my face and my boys are smiling too, so I suppose that's what really matters. I hope you're finding something to make you smile too.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Day Trip

Today the boys and I headed south to meet my Mom in a city halfway between us.

"So, where are we off to Mom?" they say with muffins in hand.

Good tunes are essential for a good road trip. We started out with a little Feist, then a bit of Sarah, and on the way home? Mana, of course. Luckily, my kids like my music.

First stop? An emergency pit stop at the po-dunkville mercantile because I forgot to go before we left home and drank a Diet Dr. Pepper in the first 15 minutes on the road.

And a landmark sighting for all of you Napoleon Dynamite fans - the Cuttin Curral really does exist! We have been fans for a while (Little P can do the Napoleon dance), but now that we live in Napoleon's neck of the woods, we find it more entertaining than ever .

After a bit of shopping and lunch, we had to get ice cream. As you can see, the boys loved it!

It was a good day!

And the reason for our little jaunt, besides some quality time with Grandma? Could the motivation for this trip really be that innocent and wholesome? OK, I admit it - there is fabric involved! I needed some white cotton velveteen for a little Christmas project I'm working on and I couldn't find it anywhere in our town or online. So, I did what any girl with a fabric loving mama that lives in a bigger city would do - I called her up and asked her to find some for me. She came through right away. Thanks Mom! For the fabric and for such a fun day!

Friday, October 19, 2007

a few things

1) Thanks so much for all of your encouraging and supportive comments on my last post. The boys and I have been laughing and playing a little more in the last couple of days. I have some plans for moving things around in the house to help us be more balanced in our days. More on that later.

2) Want another chance to win one of my bags? Leave a comment here.

3)I was flattered to be seen here.

4) Many of you asked about the jacket. Well, it's on hold, while I help a friend sew some of her new fabric into something pretty. It's not hard with such lovely fabric. And I'll get back to the jacket just as soon as I can. The weather next week looks perfect for jacket wearing.

5) Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Real Me

I started working on that jacket last night. It's coming together nicely. And the reason why I had time to start on it? I decided to drop that craft show. I have been working non-stop trying to get ready for it and trying to sell things on Etsy so I can pay for the supplies I needed for the show. And what did I have to show for it? Six purses - yes, that's it! Six purses. That's why I dropped the show. I've sewn a lot more than that in the last few weeks, it's just that the rest needed to go on Etsy. I really wanted to do it, but I just didn't think it was going to happen and I wanted to give the organizer time to find someone else to fill my spot.

When I started this whole crafty, sewing, selling things on Etsy adventure, I didn't want to give up sewing for myself or my family and I didn't want it to take over my life. The last couple of weeks, it's been taking over my life. I so enjoy what I've started here on the blog and on Etsy, but really, I'm a full-time Mom and a part-time crafter. So, in the spirit of remembering who I really am, I might be talking a bit more about my Mom adventures here. You can still expect lots of sewing and crafty goodness, because that's who I really am too, just with a little more of this, this, and this thrown in.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Monday WIP

1) Accessories for the boys' Halloween costumes. Yes, I'm being a tease and not telling you what they're going to be be. This is a pretty good clue though.
2) The eleven purses. They're half finished. They would've been finished, but I got side tracked by some new fabric and two custom orders.
3) A new jacket for me with fabric from this pile. I don't usually make time to sew for myself - cut them out? Yes. But actually sew them? I'm going to have to change that!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Remember, Part 2

Do you remember this? I have had this name stitched for a while now. But I have been putting off this post because I knew there was no way I could adequately express how I feel about this. I am grateful to have been a part of this project and I look forward to carrying the tote when it is my turn. I hope it will give me a chance to tell people about Alicia.

Alicia A. Birchett

She was my same age.

She died on my anniversary.

She left three sons and a husband.

She joined the military so she could see the world and contribute.

She died from injuries sustained when the brakes failed while she changed a tire on a truck.

I wish she were still here.

While searching for information about Alicia, I came across a page that listed pictures and names of the one hundred and forty-one men and women my age who have died in this war. This war that never should have happened. I weep for them. I still have so much life ahead of me and while I am grateful for these men and women who have sacrificed, I can't help thinking that they should all still have so much life ahead of them too.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

A little bit of everything

I've been fighting a cold since last Thursday and I think I'm getting over it today as I sit here breathing freely through my nose. So, I haven't done much crafting for the past few days - a little bit of work on the boys costumes that I will show later, but not much other than that. I did manage to do a few other things though....

1) I got my hair cut yesterday. I tried out someone new. I'm not so good at staying with one person - if I have one bad experience with them, I cut them off, at least for a little while. If their price it too high (not a problem here in Idaho, but very much an issue in California), I will go to them occasionally and fill in with a less expensive stylist. The last time I got my hair colored (I have a ton of gray and am way too vain to let it show) before I had Baby N was the day before he was born. It didn't really take and even turned my hair a bit green. I swore off this stylist because of this, but then I thought that maybe it wasn't her fault, it was probably the hormones.

So, the verdict of yesterday's cut and color experience - good. It is my same old hair style (my hair is pulled back here - I hate having it on my face!) and I was trying to go for something a little different. I think I'll have to either chop it really short or grow it out to get a really different look. Maybe I will chop it next time. I'm tired of this hair style, but it is a good haircut. It lays nicely and it took more than ten minutes to do (the reasons why I left my last stylist). And the best part - I got my hair cut, colored, and highlighted for the same price as just my haircut in California.

2) We made these delicious apple cakes, a recipe that my family started making when I was a teenager. Can you tell what they are supposed to be? Probably not, so I'll tell you - ghosts! My little ghost pan was probably not the best for this cake as it has a streusel topping that just bubbled and boiled over making a gooey, ooey, yummy mess that didn't do much for the shape of the ghost. I tried to make some changes in the recipe to make it healthier, but I think the streusel thwarted my efforts. Anyone know a way to make a healthy streusel?

Here's the recipe without any modifications:

Yummy Apple Cake
4 cups apples peeled and chopped
2 cups sugar
Cover apples with sugar and let stand for 10 to 20 minutes.

Sift together 3 cups flour, 2 tsp soda, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp cinnamon.

Blend 2 eggs and 2/3 c. oil into apple mixture. Add flour mixture, stirring just until blended. Add 2 tsp vanilla. Pour into 9x13 pan.

Mix and spread on top: 1 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup flour, 1 cup chopped nuts, 1/2 cup butter.

Bake at 350 for 50 to 60 minutes.

3) And while we're on the subject of food, Darcy tagged me for a food related meme - a food factoid for every letter of my name. Here we go...

J - Juice is a good breakfast beverage and breakfast is by far my favorite meal. I love cereal, oatmeal, pancakes, yogurt, waffles, french toast, eggs, omelettes, etc. I don't usually eat breakfast how I would really want to, but I still love it!

E - Escargot is something I've never tried and really have no desire to try.

S - Sushi is something I tried and was surprised to find it wasn't so bad. I'm not in love with it, but I'm not opposed to it either.

S - Spaghetti was my favorite dinner when I was a kid.

I - Ice cream is by far my favorite food. It got me through my first pregnancy. It's my favorite treat. I had a few ice cream birthday cakes as a kid - ice cream birthday cakes with ice cream on the side. I scream, you scream, Jessi screams for ice cream!!

4) And on my crafty to-do list - get going on the 11 purses I cut out last week (this was before the cold hit). Some of these will go in the shop and some I will save for the craft show.

We got a late start to this week because Ryan had the day off yesterday. Three day weekends are the best! Even if you don't go somewhere, it's so great to have an extra day to sleep in, especially when you're a little under the weather.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Purses and Such

It's giveaway time again, but not here. Go over to Design Mom and enter to win a fabulous prize package, including this purse. And if you're not already reading Design Mom, I highly recommend it. Hers was one of the first blogs I started reading and one of the reasons why I now read so many.And, while we're on the subject of purses, if you're ever in Kauai and looking for a great gift (like on of my purses) to take home, check out Nest. Julia is just opening her store there and I think she has done a fabulous job of putting things together - doesn't it look great? And she also has an Etsy shop with some great jewelry.

Have a happy weekend everyone!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

More Autumn

I'm not sure why I am so into autumn this year. I am normally a fan of autumn, but not like this year. This year autumn is my best friend. I walk outside and my heart jumps upon feeling the crisp air. I glory in those days that are dreary and i n those days that are full of golden autumn light. Everything about this season is making me a very happy girl this year.

Yesterday we made Amy's Pumpkin Chocolate Chip muffins and they really are "mackin good." Little P couldn't keep his hands off of them - every time I turned around he had another muffin. I guess that's what I get for leaving them in reach of a three year old. Even Baby N was a big fan and he's been a bit of a picky eater lately. This is only because he's finally going to have more than six teeth and it seems they are all coming at once - poor guy. Oh wait, poor me! I'm the one who was up with him four times last night while he cried and cried and cried.

And in the spirit of destashing and autumn, I put together some Autumn Inspiration/Goody Packs for The J Shop. Check them out!

Happy Autumn everyone! Again! (This is probably not the last time you will hear this from me.)

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

In the Air...

It's in the air - that crispness and chill that says autumn is here! And with it comes that most fun of all holidays, Halloween! Remember these? (I hope you do - it was only a few days ago) - here is what they became...

And I made four - one for our family, one for a gift, and two for the shop. I'll list one today and one later this week. I still have a bit of fabric left, so I might have to think of another little project - any suggestions?

To start out the Halloween fun, we had some friends over last night to make pumpkin cookies (and ducks - somehow the boys found the Easter cookie cutters and insisted on making some Halloween ducks). The boys (theirs and ours) licked the frosting off the cookies and sneaked bits of dough while the adults enjoyed each other's company.
And a few more bits of handmade - this is my trick or treat bag from my youth. My mom made it for me - isn't she great? I think I am now just realizing how lucky I was to have all these handmade items. I grew up in the 80's - handmade was not cool (at least not where I grew up - even though there was a lot of handmade going on where I grew up). I'm so glad that handmade is making a comeback and people are appreciating the one of kind, unique, and lovely nature of it. I would love to make these for my boys - I'll have to see if my mom still has the pattern.
And this - well, this is Funky Frank. I made him the first year we were married. I made him from a Simplicity pattern that came with many other wreath patterns. I think it must be out of print now because I don't see it when I'm perusing the Simplicity catalog. My favorite part about him? His bobbin bolts! Happy Halloween Everyone!