Wednesday, February 29, 2012

LTTSA: Play Town

I'm running behind.

You know, for a gal who enjoys deadlines, I've been missing a lot lately.
But I'm almost down stitching up a couple of cute little houses for a soft, squishable play town for this month's project over at the a little gray LTTSA.

Now that I've made a couple at the suggested size, I want to do some miniature versions.
I think if I made them minis and stuck some small strips of velco on the bottom of each piece, and paired it with a quilted play mat, it would make a sweet little gift. Maybe make the mat roll-up-able and it would tote will for travel and/or car trips... Hmmm...I do have quite a few friends with IttyBitties turning one this year... It's a thought at any rate.

The devil of these was in the details.
And by devil, I mean my favorite part.
The kids had fun helping me to sketch out what houses they wanted me to make...and even though I've only got two nearly-finished, they have a request of buildings nearly a mile long.
It's okay though...I've been hand stitching on the details in the evenings while we watch movies or The Munchkins read their homework chapter books aloud to each other. I'm always surprised at how enjoyable hand stitching can be when I get over the whole but-I-could-be-done-now-if-I-machine-stitched-it mentality. Slow and steady wins the race. Sometimes.

And also? There's this little gem.
It's so lovely. I had to share

Kate Spade "Henrietta Street" Fashion Film from Kinga Burza on Vimeo.

It's just a short little ad film for Kate Spade NY, created to document their Pop Store on Henrietta Street in London.I want to crawl inside this video and stay for a while...

Friday, February 24, 2012

Pleated Boxes Pillow Sew Along

Well how adorable is this?!

The peeps over at Craft Buds are having a sew-along in March. 
I'm pretty stoked! What a great little pillow to freshen things up for Spring!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Evidence of Faith.

We had The Monkey baptized Sunday.

Yes, finally.

Catholic guilt is a mother.
It’s mystifying to me how something like that kept getting pushed to the backburner. All I can really attest to is that I was in no shape to deal with any more life-altering decisions at t he time in which she should have been baptized four years ago, and that by the time she turned four, I was so embarrassed to even admit to anyone that we hadn’t had her baptized yet, that I kept finding convenient excuses not to do so…


Regardless, it was beautiful.

I find such comfort in my faith. In leaving my worries in the oh-so-capable hands of someone greater than myself. I find comfort in the community of church. In the presence of strangers in faith. In The Catholic Family.

There’s a portion of the baptismal ceremony (not the rites themselves, but more the introduction of the new member to the church) that happens at Holy Cross that I’ve not been witness to in any other church, and I love it. Father offers an introduction at the beginning of mass, asking each of the child’s parents and then godparents to make the sign of the cross on the child’s head. He then invites any other member of the parish who would care to do so, to come forward and also make the sign of the cross on the child’s head.

In addition to Sophie’s immediate and extended family in attendance all coming forward, there were a slew of other parishioners that lined the aisle to come pay small homage to The Monkey’s initiation. Each sweet, creased, careworn face bent down to her level, signed the cross upon her hairline and murmured something to her… They called her beautiful and wonderful. They wished her luck and bestowed blessings upon her.

And let’s recall, for a moment, that for the first year or so of The Monkey’s life she wouldn’t let anyone so much as touch her. But I’ve never seen a more beautific smile on that kid’s face than when perfect strangers came up to mark her with the sign of our faith and whisper welcome into her ear. It brought tears to my eyes to see how those people loved her without even knowing her. That, in my mind? Is the definition of church. And faith. And everyone good and right about my faith. Acceptance and love, right there, plain as day, for everyone to see.

And afterwards? We had donuts.
The Monkey was in hog heaven. And somehow we fit 24+ people into my tiny little apartment. I'm still not even sure how that happened. But The Munchkins were surrounded by their family. By those they hold most dear.

And The Monkey was showered with gifts on her big day.
I had NO IDEA there existed so many different Catholic-related coloring books.

It was a day to be surrounded by those you love. It was perfect.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Piano Guys



These are all I've been listening to all afternoon.

The Piano Guys.

There's just something about the strings that I've always loved.
I'm guessing it's all wrapped up in memories of my dad playing Vivaldi's Four Seasons all through my childhood. Did you know, when I went off to college I lugged with me my radio/tapedeck/alarmclock and a tape (yes. a tape. yeesh) of Vivaldi's Four Seasons and used to fall asleep to it between settings 1 & 2 so it wouldn't bother the roomie? Truth. Wrap a little classical piano training into my background and I think you can see why I'm smitten with EVERY. SINGLE. VIDEO so far.

Go. Quick. Listen. Thank me later...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Handmade Valentines

Sometimes, after all The Munchkins are abed, I handstitch. You know. Without the machine (gasp!!!)

This little guy...and a few others which are winging their way across this grand ol' US via your friendly, neighborhood postal service...were kind of a kick to make.

 Check out that wonky, mis-folded, handstitched little envelope. I've got skills, yo.

Also? I think I'm funny. I made up the card/reverse applique/saying alllll on my own.
It made the kids groan, so I know it's good.
I based it loosely on the Sew Mama Sew tutorial that I've had bookmarked for forever and ever.

Happy Hearts and Chocolates Day, gang!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Birthday Crowns & Adele

The Biz had a birthday part this weekend.

And she was nervous. This was the first birthday party with friends from her 'new school'.
Let's set aside for the moment that this child is gregarious and bossy and never has trouble making friends... But I forget that we ripped her out of her regular IPS school of two full years to drop her into an amazing Magnet school. I forget that it can be tricky to negotiate the social pitfalls of second grade. Girls start getting catty around then, if I recall correctly. Full of attitude and burgeoning independence these little bits of sass start turning on each other around the age of 8 or so...

Luckily, about 3.5 minutes into the party she was running and screaming and bouncing and laughing without a worry. (Bounce U in Fishers? It's awesome. Simply Awesome.)

And, perhaps The Biz is a little more like her momma than I'm ready to admit, as she wanted to MAKE Miss Kate's birthday gift. Due to tension issues with my machine (yes. again.) we compromised and paired a handmade Felt Birthday Crown with some nifty little cell-phone shaped Walkie Talkies.

Biz sat on my lap and helped me feed the felt through the machine...picked the buttons out of my stash...and chose the general color scheme. So basically she made it herself...mostly...kind of.

Sidenote? Must. Research. Monster High. What in the world is this show and when did everyone get obsessed with it? And further? WHY are the Barbie-style dolls and accessories all $20+ bucks?! Sheesh.

But the crown was a hit...and The Biz's fears on new friends outside of school have been laid to rest and then some.

What an exhausting weekend...

Also, this. Because it's just so perfect.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Personalized Pillows for the Pack

So I made the mistake decision to download the Pinterest app to my phone not too long ago.

Follow Me on Pinterest

Like I don't have enough to do in the evening hours with three Munchkins running around, eight loads of laundry begging to be done and rooms crying to be cleaned? Small wonder it all sits idle, eh?

Anywho, The Monkey was looking over my shoulder the other day when she spied a pin of a tot clutching a pillow that looked just like her brother. She squealed. They all ran over. And my next Pinterest-inspired project was predestined. Just like that.

I'm actually pretty stoked at the way these little cuties turned out.
I just traced the basic head shape from a kitchen cereal bowl, added ears, and sketched out some hair designs. I traced everything onto felt, appliqued the features together and then onto the pillow front first (I used some leftover bits of no-pill fleece for the front and cotton-flannel for the back, to make them soft and squishy. I'm pretty sure at one time or another it was all on clearance at JoAnn's. Because that's how I roll.)

Once the faces were pieced together, I hand embroidered the features on and then proceeded to construct just a basic, easy-peasy, envelope-style closure for the pillow back.

I originally intended to embroider The Munchkins' names on the pillow fronts as well, but once the faces were on there, I thought it would look to busy to add anything else.

Still, they're kind of a riot. The Munchkins love them. And I've got another good, go-to, last-minute birthday- party gift idea to tuck away.

~ Cheers! ~

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

LTTSA: Baby Doll Carrier

This month's project for the LTTSA over at a little gray was the Bear Carrier.

I've got to say that, out of all the projects I've tackled from this book, this one received the loudest cheer when it was finished. The Monkey was simply over the moon at her new doll carrier.  And I was rather over the moon at my successful attempt at Button Holes!!!  I had some extra large and chunky bright pink buttons in my stash (truth be told, all the materials were bits and pieces I'd had squirreled away, so the overhead on this project was a big fat goose egg. Huzzah!)

This is fatbaby.

Actually, this is fatbaby 2.0
fatbaby's namesake is currently tucked away in a doll bed on the second floor with a black sharpie The Last Airbender Tattoo covering the top of her head, most of the stuffing in her body leaked out, head more-than-slightly off kilter. The Monkey is rough with her loved ones...

fatbaby 2.0 was a gift from Santa this year. And let me tell you what, Santa had to search eight store in three counties before he found an exact replica. That Santa deserves a round of applause, and a drink, she'd settle for a nice Irish Coffee about now though.

The Monkey is always pretty pleased when I whip out the camera.

yes, that's a pot of spaghetti on the front burner. No you may not have any. There's no such thing as leftovers in my house anymore. I have three living, breathing garbage disposals these days... God help me when they hit the teenage years... They'll eat me out of house and home for sure.

This is, obviously, her Blue Steel.

 I think it's safe to say this project was a success!

Happy Sewing, gang!

Monday, February 6, 2012


sometimes...when it has been oneofthosedays... i come home and launch myself onto my bed, scattering rumpled coverlets and sheets and all of the whydoesanyoneneedthismanypillows pillows. and i press my nose down deep into the impression your head made last night, when your arm was flung up carelessly above your bed, fingers just brushing the frosted panes of window glass, notsnoring softly. because you dont snore. mmmhmmm...  and i can just barely still smell that mix of soap and deodarant and shampoo that is you. and i wish you were here. and for just a second? you are,,,

Naptown to Super City... Super Bowl XLVI

I could not BE more proud of my city today.

photo credit: my mom. Thanks, Mom! I totally stole this...
 um...and this...

Over the past week I have fallen even more in love with Indianapolis.
And I didn't even think that was possible.

Apparently, hosting a Super Bowl brings out the best in us all.

I volunteered Wednesday through Friday down in Super Bowl Village.
And not only did Volunteering come with its own set of swag, but it also came complete with a renewed sense of civic commitment and pride and dedication to my community at large. Every which way I turned people were smiling, laughing, thanking volunteers... Locals were running around like tourists... Visitors were complimenting locals... it was just this heady combination of a buoyancy of spirit petering off into complete and utter exhaustion (and sore smile muscles) every single day.

But I'm so glad I did it. And I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

*photo caveat*
Some of my favorite photos from the past week are currently STUCK on my phone's camera. Which is not cooperating in the technical sense of the word. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the good people of Sprint will be able to retrieve my things from the date black hole in which they've disappeared...pleaseohpleaseohpleaseihope...

In the mean time...enjoy this random photo of Dan & I...being ridiculous last Wednesday night after my first volunteer shift ended. It was a good time. We'll just leave it at that.

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