Archive for February, 2009

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

My Poople Hat

I can’t believe I finished this project before spring hit.  I was pretty sure I’d get about 3/4 of the way done, it would get warm and I would put it away somewhere with the rest of my UFO’s never to be seen again.  Not this time!  I used this pattern from good knit which was super simple and easy.  It would probably be fast too if I wasn’t such a slacker.  

I meant to make a size 2-3 but somehow ended up making a 1-2 so I may be stitching up another one this time next year.  I used size 6 circular needles even though it’s not knit in the round so you could use straights.  I didn’t check my gauge it’s such a small quick project I decided to just knit away.  It looked about right size-wise so I figured it would be ok.  I used a bulky weight (machine washable!) alpaca yarn from lovely yarns, a local yarn shop.  Now I feel like tackling something more ambitious… but what?  I have some books out from the library I want to look through.  I don’t know, I may be entering that dangerous I have more ideas for projects than I have time for phase.  Whenever that happens I just end up watching a lot of tv and not being very productive at all.  Another look at the hat: Read the rest of this entry »

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Saturday, February 28th, 2009



The American Craft Council show is back in Baltimore this weekend.  I went last year and had a good time.  So, since I had occasion to play a little hooky today I decided to go back.  I was there less than two hours but it was long enough to completely surrender to the feeling of being immersed in craft.  I can’t think of any better way to find inspiration.  Not to mention that my very cool and talented friend Shannon owner of Sweet Pepita has a booth there!  I was so happy to see that business looked brisk.  I mean honestly, who can resist that type of cute?  What baby girl wouldn’t look cute in a pixie hat?  Seriously her stuff is amazing.  You should stop by and check it out.

I wasn’t supposed to buy anything.  But if anyone was getting something today it was me.  Everyone else around here gets plenty of treats.  I was pretty good for the most part.  I was so productive today getting things done in the kitchen that I treated myself to a coffee spoon that mounts on a little hook on the wall.  Unbelievably I already put it up on the wall.  I’m feeling pretty smug about that because it usually takes me at least 6 months to see a project through to end if it requires screws and drywall anchors.  I love these and these too though.  I guess there’s always next year.  I also found a nice little case for my brand new box of 1000 business cards.  But that was it, really.  I think I demonstrated an impressive amount of self-restraint.  Believe me, it wasn’t easy.  

I also finished the hat I’ve been working on for Chase.  I feel conflicted because I want her to be able to wear it tomorrow but I could really use another nice mild day.  Oh, I almost forgot.  The best craft I saw today?  Came home from school this afternoon.  Chase’s first macaroni necklace!  A macaroni necklace.  I won’t even mention the huge lump in my throat I had when I said goodbye to her this morning at school.  Such a big girl.  It’s hard to believe.  

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day.  Back to back gymnastics and then a ride out to Springfield farm to pick up our second order.  Would you believe that our last order lasted for 5 months.  We ordered just shy of 100 pounds which entitled us to a 20% discount.  I worked out the numbers today.  Turns out it costs us about 15 bucks a week for locally and humanely raised meat.  We’re really happy with the quality and service too.  I think this deal is hard to beat.

Sunday’s for the mall and a little girls day out.  Hopefully somewhere in there I’ll work in some time to run the vacuum.  We’ll see.  I’ll just be happy if I can get a picture of Chase in her new hat.

Happy Friday!

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Tuesday, February 24th, 2009

The Chiffon Dancing Skirt (with Cut-On Waist!)

I got the idea for this skirt from the most recent issue of Threads magazine.  There’s an article in the issue about making a layered chiffon skirt… for an adult.  I’m totally digging the idea of riffing on commercial patterns rather than being totally beholden to them.  I made a couple of modifications to the instructions but basically followed the steps outlined to create a tiny version for Chase.  

I reduced the number of channels in the waistband down to two.  I love the simplicity of the cut-on waistband.  You just can’t get any easier than that and the look of this skirt is perfect for the application.  I may have skimped a little when putting in the elastic for the waist so I hope it fits her come spring.

I used a really simple girls’ skirt pattern.  The whole project took me about a day to complete during nap-time and after bed.  It was a fun project except that even though the fabric store has a pretty good selection of colors, I didn’t like any of them.  I managed to find some that I thought worked together but it wasn’t easy.  

Now, somebody buy me a steamer.  AND I need some ideas for what to do with some seersucker that I bought at A Fabric Place with a cute, summery print on it.  

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Friday, February 20th, 2009

Happy Friday

Feliz Viernes, Joyeux Vedredi!  Indeed it is.  I guess when you work extra hard during the week it makes the weekend that much sweeter?  I wish I didn’t have anything on my calender for Monday either but that is unfortunately not the case.  I’m not worrying about that tonight though.  

I have a bunch of items on my to do list but am pretty tired.  I’m thinking about giving myself the night off.  I gave myself the night off last night but I had to go to bed early so it really didn’t count.  It only counts if you give yourself the night off and you spend the whole evening luxuriating in doing nothing.  That means not going to bed early.  It means staying up all night and pouring over the second book in the Twilight series.  I can’t help myself.  The writing’s so bad but the story’s so good.  

Tonight we’re starting on the crazy assortment of movies that we have in from Netflix.  We’ve got titles all over the boars.  It’s a little ridiculous really.  We’re starting light.  A little Bill Murray to get warmed up.  


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Monday, February 16th, 2009

Happy Belated Valentine’s Day

We made some last minute valentine’s on Saturday afternoon.  Chase can’t say love so Ben taught her to say I heart mommy which is kind of cute and a little funny too.  

Things have been so busy in general that it was great to have 4 solid days of free time.  I finished reading twilight, got crackalackin on some home organization projects (which are all, of course, only half finished) and did some cooking.  

I was skeptical about Twilight but Chelsea insisted that I read it.  I trust her opinion on books but I think she’s biased when it comes to stories about Vampires.  Our tastes always diverged somewhere between Snoop and Anne Rice.  But she was relentless and since I love discussing what I’ve read with her I took her up on it.  It took me a week to get through and I thought I was over it about 2/3 of the way through but the sexual tension and then the ending kept me going.  I don’t think I’d shell out for the rest of the series but since she’s kindly offered to ship them to me I think I’ll push through.  While I’m waiting for them to arrive I have the prequel to Anne of Green Gables that I borrowed from the library to read.  I hope it’s not just full of sad things that happen to orphan children.  We’ll see.  

Last night we made pizza for dinner using a simple recipe from the BHG cookbook.  The crust was just ok.  It lacked chewiness and flavor as far as I’m concerned.  Ben thinks it was pretty good but that I made the crust too thin and crispy for his liking.  

I also made a huge batch of ‘chex’ mix with all kinds of goodies that I like in it.  And I made a big batch of granola that tastes fantastic using a recipe from Martha’s website originally published in Body + Soul magazine.  

Tomorrow it’s back to work for me but it will be a short week… I think, you never really can tell.  What have you been up to?  Oh, and that patch came out of the wash just fine, yay.

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Tuesday, February 10th, 2009


I didn’t actually do any darning but I did do some mending.  A lot of factors are contributing to the wear and tear on Chase’s clothes.  I think it’s partly a result of the fact that over the last year she has leaned out and so she still fits many of the clothes she was wearing at this time last year.  She was already wearing 24 months at one year because she was so, shall we say, robust and she’s still wearing the same size now.  That coupled with her love for running and jumping and just generally having a good time is wearing out the knees of her pants.  

I decided to be proactive and cover up the tiny hole in her levis before it got any worse.  I don’t know how this will play out after a few washes but I’m hopeful that it will hold up.  It can’t make the problem worse.  The pants were done anyway.  I think it’s pretty cute.  

If this works, I’ll definitely try it again.  Why not get a few more miles out of an otherwise perfectly good pair of jeans?  Plus, Chase thinks the patch is cool.  

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Sunday, February 8th, 2009

My Date with Alexander Henry

At $9.50 a yard I try to restrain myself but it’s as if the fabric is designed just for me.  It speaks, nay, sings to me when I’m browsing on line.  I bought some yardage of the 2-D Zoo design in green and I love, love, love it.  Not only do I love it but I actually made the new blanket for Chase’s bed in the same week that I received the fabric from Sew, Mama, Sew!  

I don’t love the blanket.  I like it, but it doesn’t blow me away.  The pink, even though I love the texture of it, turns out to be too pink.  It’s fine though and I love the feel and weight of the finished blanket.  I accidentally bought the batting in full size instead of twin so I decided to use a double thickness and I think it makes the blanket deliciously cozy.  I used a nice soft bamboo/cotton blend and I’m really happy with it.  

The project was super simple.  I didn’t do any piecing or quilting I just used safety pins to hold all the layers together, stitched and flipped the whole thing right side out.  I finished the lowed edge with a wide ribbon instead of stitching it closed.  I think it looks great and it was a real no fuss no muss project that I was able to complete in one nap time.  

Things are really coming together.  Now I just need to finish the frieze.  Fine, the mural… geez.  

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Saturday, February 7th, 2009

My Crate & Barrel Home, Apparently

Remember when I wrote about this like two weeks ago?  What is this all about?  On one hand, if you order from the catalog you’re going to get stuff that looks like the stuff in the catalog.  On the other hand, there are a lot of paint colors at the hardware store, I’m putting tape over the motion sensors.  This catalog came in the mail yesterday… what’s up with that?  They’d better get on top of how they organize their books.  Somebody didn’t get the memo about haphazardly shoving them onto the shelves.  

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Friday, February 6th, 2009

Getting the Lead Out

Everybody has been talking about the CPSIA.  It’s really something of a huge issue…  how can you not join the cause?  So many people I know have been frantic over whether the new law would force them to shut down their businesses or not.  The good news is that, at least for the next year, the CPSC has issued a reprieve.  I wrote a more in-depth article about it for a newsletter which you can read here.


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Wednesday, February 4th, 2009

This Week

This week is a big week full of grown up adult decisions and I’m tired.  There has, of course, been a little time for fun.

A newly discovered wine made locally in Frederick County by someone my neighbor went to high school with nonetheless.  It’s a really nice drinkable wine.  Particularly good shared with friends.  I prefer red wine over white but even so I don’t like a red that’s particularly full-bodied or challenging.  I thought this was a good fit for my tastes at a reasonable price.  Thank you Cellar Notes!   I found it at Wine Source in Hampden with the domestic wines.  

Preschool starts next week so we’ve been talking about the last time we visited and we’ll be having one last visit tomorrow before she starts going for real on Monday.  It’s exciting and scary at the same time but I think she’ll really enjoy it.  Poor Teenie is having to get in on the preparation too.  I think She’s pretty psyched.  She practically tried to sleep with the backpack I bought for her today.  It’s cute but I had to put my foot down on that one.


Peanut butter and banana waffle sandwiches for breakfast.  Good times.

 An activity I stumbled upon in The Creative Family and that we all    accidentally took part in the other day.  Arrr.  Apparently kids will make up  things to do if you leave scraps of fabric lying around and your hubby will  too.  

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