Saturday, December 25, 2010

Happy Christmas to all and to all a good night!

We have been bustling here... I like to bustle through December. I've stayed too busy to leave any proof here ;) I have a few pictures, but they aren't the best quality ( on my phone...) I think I'll post them anyway b/c there is no time like the present...

I really hope I post more pictures of this darling thing! One of my favorite memories of this Christmas will be the late nights in the basement with Andrew making this little play kitchen... like I said, hopfully more on that later.

Do you know how happy I am about what came in that box? I love the little girly- don't get me wrong, but I am thrilled about the seeing machine that arrived in the box! I have made many many a thing on my old/ never been serviced singer, that cost less than $100... But I am going to be much happier and quicker and neater on this machine... And apparently sneakier. Andrew said that ge doesn't know when I've snuck down to the basement to sew anymore because he can't here my banging machine all over the house;)

What a fun white Christmas! I think it will be well remembered!

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Sunday, December 5, 2010

Excuse me please...

...while I indulge in a WAR EAGLE! I've been humming my Alma mater all day... We were thrilled to get invited to the big game...

I didn't realize that it had been five years since I last went to an auburn football game. What an awesome one to see! When we got home we started watching it again on dvr... And that is really something coming from me b/c in general I am not much into watching football.

I made Andrew stay until they played the Alma mater after most of the crowd was gone...
I'll end my football post with a quote from a friend who went to the university of alabama, "I hate to say it, but this year God is an Auburn fan." I'm glad to say I believe she's right!
Bodda getta bodda getta bodda getta ba. Ra ra ra sis boom ba. Weegle weegle war eagle, kick 'em in the butt big blue!

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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Dress up

Halloween is a fun time to dress up... I want to try and extend the fun. We should play dress up more often!

We made this Thomas the train costume after church... Yes, I waited until the day of to ask e what he wanted to be. Maybe I wanted a design challenge... Maybe I wanted to avoid multiple mind changes...
The big box made walking up hills tricky for e... So there was a lot of "I think I can, I think i can, I think I can."

We had a monkey costume (you may remember our cute little boy monkey from two years ago), but e insisted that a had to be the strawberry. This picture reminds me of a picture if me in a watermelon costume when I was a couple years older than her. The red with black seeds and how her knees are locked back... Aw! And let me tell you- she was a pro at trick or treating... No one needed to teach her what to do!

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Monday, October 4, 2010


Ah! Such fallish weather we are having...

Can you see the pansies and parsely in the background? (and perhaps the beloved red shoes?)

The wind was blustery as we did some fall planting this weekend... I say- just the perfect occasion for some hand knits ;) looks like anna's earflap hat is too small... I better get knitting! ( and her sweater is a pinwheel sweater I worked on over July 4th weekend)

Our little guy was a great helper...when he was helping fill pots with dirt he said," mama, I love to do stuff just you and me, just mama and Elisha!" it made me do happy ( and also made me stop listening to Jane Eyre in my earphones... Hate to miss his sweet words! ... Consequently, I just finished it... again, for probably the 5th time... But it was so wonderful... Ah!)

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Friday, September 24, 2010

love shack

... so i really couldn't watch all those new fabrics spin around in the washer and dryer with out playing with them first... so i cut 2 inch strips off of each of the fat quarters and had a date night with my innocent crush ;-) i may pay for not pre-washing the fabrics first, oh well...
i have been really loving house blocks lately as i dive head first into quilting. for a while i felt like all this sewing was a detour from my ceramic work and painting that i had to take while my children were young.... but i'm beginning to realize that it has developed so naturally from my artistic interests all along. one of the reasons i love ceramic art is because of its functionality. i love the idea of people using, physically interacting with my artwork... that seems to give it so much of a life beyond the original creation of the piece.
i love that a quilt has such a physical presence, so many ways to experience it, places to use it... and of course people to love it... i love that it is something that can have such a long life, such a story to tell. i love to think of the generational aspect of a quilt's life. we have some quilts that have been in my husband's family and i love the connection i feel with his great aunt, whom i have never met. by studying her fabric choices and the stitches her hand's made i feel like i know her, perhaps in a more intimate way than i do my own great aunt....
i know that i am rambling, but i have wanted to express my defense of quilting and fabric arts. sometimes i hear a voice in the back of my head telling my that i am not really an artist... my friends from the art department that went on the get MFAs and show in galleries are 'really' artists and i am just wasting my degree. i know that is ridiculous, i just need to remind myself sometimes. seriously- anyone who has seen the quilts from gee's bend shown in a museum next to abstract expressionistic paintings cannot deny that they most certainly hold their own... and i personally would argue that they have a depth that i often find lacking in "professional" art.

but, back to these darling house blocks. isn't the image, the idea of a home...especially an imperfect one, such a comfort? i'm always drawn to them...
(if you click on the link under the picture you can see some close-ups... my computer isn't cooperating with me right now, so i can't post them directly)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I'm smiling today...

...As I think about my darling little ones...
....And how much fun we had this morning at the botanical garden together...

....Just us... No stroller, no diaper bag... Ok, I did have a little bag with my credit card, my phone, a sippy cup, and a pouch sling that was hardly used.

Here they are trotting along to the children's garden for storytime. I think this is one of my favorite pictures to date!

This little pile of fabric waiting to be washed is making me smile. I got a fat quarter selection of Anna Maria Horner's newest line of fabric- innocent crush... It wasn't supposed to be in stores until November but a shop (whipstitch) here got it in yesterday... And I am thrilled that I obsessively had them cut and hold the fabric for me b/c by the time I got there some of the fabrics had already sold out!

I am also smiling because I have two children exhaustedly napping and I am heading to the basement to work on a very special quilt for a couple who will be forming a new family as they wed in a couple of months...
Anything making you smile?
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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

fluffy twirly scrappy skirt tutorial.... finally

i forgot all about doing this tutorial for y'all! i have had the lovely pictures just waiting... and i think i had notes on exact measurements as well.... but, as this particular project was done during the flooded basement/ studio upheaval period of time, that i still remember with dread... well, those measurements are long gone. so instead you get to make this a couture garment-- made to measure ;-) which is best b/c my sizing isn't standard anyway...
the best fabric for this super gathered skirt is a light weight fabric such as cotton voile. i used anna maria horner's little folks. if you do a search for supplies on and look for voile you should find some you like. i have made this skirt a variety of ways... but the basic idea is to decide on exactly how fluffy and long you to want it... get a skirt that you can measure to start your figuring.
*you will decide the length from the bottom of the waist band... add extra in for your seam and hem allowance (i used a hemming foot to make a narrow rolled hem, so only added about an inch for hem allowance)... i made a lining and let it hang about an inch longer to add interest.
for the skirt on anna(the skirt in the tutorial process pictures is actually a different one from the one on anna- sorry for the confusion- the one in the tutorial is a newborn size gift i made later) i cut my "scraps" 8 inches long and between 4" and 6.5" wide to add variety. i used 13 different pieces. this is an area where you can really personalize this skirt. you can use one fabric for the whole thing, alternate between two or three prints, or use a wide variety like i did...
*place your "scraps" in the order you like best and then sew them together to get your top layer panel. then cut a lining/under skirt the same width and if you choose, an inch longer. the finished width of the scrappy panel of anna's skirt was 59"... made a VERY fluffy skirt!
*pin the two layers together, both front sides facing up, and sew two long gathering stitches across the top edge. i do this by placing the fabric with the edge at the edge of the foot and making one line of stitches with the needle in the far rt. position and the putting the fabric back where it started and doing another line with the needle in the far lft. position.
* next cut a rectangle of fabric for the waist band. the width of this rectangle will be determined by the width of elastic you choose and the length should be long enough get the skirt on can measure your baby at the widest spot (her big ole diapered bottom) and probably add about 4-6 inches to that to make it easy to fit over said bottom as you pull the skirt up. the waist band piece on anna's skirt was ~ 27" long.
* lay the waist band fabric over the skirt panel(s) with right sides facing each other. gather the skirt fabric so the the edges of the skirt meet the edges of the waist panel.
*fuss with the gathered fabric until it is evenly distributed along the waist band and pin it together.
* sew the waist band to the skirt.
* press that seam open and the fold the waist fabric over toward the inside of the skirt to make a channel for the elastic... again the width of this channel will depend on the width of your chosen elastic.
* pin fabric so that the edge is folded under and extends just beyond the previously sewn joining seam. (don't know if that wording makes sense... study the picture?)
*sew with the front side facing up so that you can make a neatly hidden seam right along the joining of the skirt and waist band. i go slowly and check the underside frequently to be sure the folded fabric on the underside will be caught in the stitching.
* run the elastic through the waist band channel.
* now you will fold the long panel in half with right (front) side facing inward to close up the side of the skirt.
* sew the waist band closed catching both ends of the elastic in the stitching.
*sew the the top layer closed separately from the bottom layer. this is very tricky to do neatly and completely. all i can say is- try the best you can and know that i am not a professional pattern designer! there may not be a correct way to do this ;-)
* once each layer is sewn closed, all you have to do is hem the bottom of both layers! i highly recommend a hem foot!
ta da!!
once again-- this skirt is different from the one anna is wearing at the very top of the post. it was a newborn size that i made as a gift. it is significantly less fluffy... and as i mentioned before, i lost the measurements... sorry!
i also want to add a note about the waist band fabric. i did anna's with two layers of voile. i scrunches up a lot and i would have preferred it if it had been quilting weight, or voile lined with quilting weight... i have since made a skirt out of old jeans and i made the waist band channel for elastic out of quilting weight with a lightweight interfacing ironed on to help it keep its shape.

*** ok--- please post pictures (or links to them ) in the comments if you actually use this tutorial... it may be poorly done, but i did try and would love the reward of seeing other creations! ;-)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

tucked in

i did get his quilt finished for his 3rd birthday! he has been sleeping under it since then... hurray!here's our little fellow puckering up... duck in hand, in his red big boy bed... and don't forget to note the quilt... you know, the one i made out of 300 squares and hand sewed all the quilting (through denim backing even!)... and no, it did not turn me off to quilting, or even hand quilting... i'm slowly making my way through a queen size now... but i can tell you-- no more denim backs for hand quilted pieces!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Girl band

On a whim (and based on an idea my sewing buddy had) I whipped up this little head band for Anna today.

She was so generous to sit still while I photographed it... I could tell she was excited to be posing for a picture ;)

All I did was cut a piece of elastic to fit around her head, then I cut a strip of fabric about 4-5 inches longer... Mine was a bit wider than 2 inches b/c that is what worked with my width of elastic. However, you can make it whatever width you would like...
I folded the fabric and sewed a tube... Turned it right side out, ran the elastic through it, then pinned each end of elastic to each end of the tube of fabric. Next I stretched the tube long as I sewed a long wide zig zag stitch down the center. After that all I had to do was connect the ends... And of course embellish if that is your taste;) I put a felt circle with a couple of buttons layered on top to hidden my closure. Finally, baby fine hair out of fine looking baby face!

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Monday, September 13, 2010

ok ok... i'll update

i realized that i hadn't uploaded pictures from my camera in a while... i guess it had been four months! here are some pictures from the big three and thirty bash we had for our is rather rare that we are all in a picture frame together... hoping for everyone to be looking at the camera and smiling is an awful lot to ask ;-)
elisha definitely enjoy being king for the day... his crown was a big hit... and so was the cake...
what our birthday cake lacks in beauty and cuteness, it makes up for in tastiness. the day will come when elisha will ask for a cake that looks like ___ , but until that day comes we will all be enjoying a cream cheese pound cake to celebrate !
it was such a wonderful evening... so many friends, good bbq, above mentioned pound cake, bubbles, and for the older birthday boy- pbr and horse shoes. it was a big kick-off... getting used to summer nights...
... andrew and i just sat outside after putting the kids to bed. we enjoyed some blue bell homemade vanilla with cut up peaches... it was a bit chilly out to be eating ice cream... my my we are rounding the curve in the season circle...

my sister has been giving me a hard time about updating my blog.... so here's to you sis ;-)

Monday, August 30, 2010

please and thank you

here are a few pictures from the spring when my computer wasn't cooperating... my goodness, how the summer has changed my littlest one! here she is at her birthday party-- all hail the may queen! she has certainly become aware of her powers... she will tell you "more" and just lately "thank you" as she beckons you to give her something... elisha did the same thing with his "thank you"s... it was mostly preemptive at first... either while giving you something- assuming you will thank him for it ;-) or thanking you ahead of time for what he wanted you to give him. it is so fun to have anna learning how give and take works... and that "thank you" is such an important part of the process !
it is so funny to see her in this dress... while she is still a rather slight little thing, she has grown... this dress fits her more like a shirt now... indecent without bloomers ;-) her hair has grown too... very decent pigtails if she doesn't pull them out.
this was a picture from easter ... the dress she is wearing was one my mother made for me!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

old times... first kiss

we had a great time at the lake with my college room mates and their families. it is so nice when you can pick up where you left off... it had been two years since we were all together. one thing i think is really fun about growing up is seeing my children respond to the children of my "childhood" friends. the fact that they get along so well seems like proof of our friendship ;-) which leads me to the second part of this post's title-- anna got along really quite well with sarah's son... she was diving into her lap to pet the 19 month old fellow's hair, then rubbing his arm... and then she was kissing up a storm! he is a cutie and i guess her inner little mama thought he might be one of her baby dolls come to life. but all the same, i am going to have to teach her not to be so forward next time ;-) sarah has pictures and more details of the weekend on her blog:

click over to see pictures of anna's wee prince charming... and elisha riding the tube behind the boat! (i actually teared up thinking about how he is growing so fast)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Don't know why I haven't shared this picture yet... Our littlest gardener was very difficult to clean up...

That much black dirt is a hard to get out of super fine baby hair.
(I need not mention that this was done on daddy's watch ;)
Location:tiny gardener

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

defeating dragons

Elisha has been very busy exercising his 'pretend' skills. He has been taking many boat rides on various vessels...

And he has been beating off dragons, monsters, and 'naughty' people.

I had a quick trip to goodwill and picked a couple classics on VHS... Elisha was delighted. Since we couldn't watch them right away, he just looked at the pictures on the front. He had an awful lot to say about that that that man, that guy on the white horse who fights dragons.... I told him it was prince charming, and isn't it nice to have a prince charming around... Somehow throughout the afternoon Anna became 'prince charmy' and Elisha did a great job protecting her from all sorts of bad people with horns and dragons. I tried to explain that a prince is a Boy and a PRinCeSs is a girl, but to no avail... It was so amusing to see Anna so oblivious of her role while Elisha was protecting her... Even after supper he would run in the room where she was and say," it's ok prince charmy- don't fuss."

Friday, July 9, 2010

Purple harvest

- those are black eyed peas ... Their shell turns purple when they are ready to be picked... We'll be able to pick some more this weekend... Hopefully have enough peas for each of us.
What's growing in your neck of the woods?

Thursday, July 8, 2010

We are home makers: part 1

This post is the first in a series... We have been making a few homes around here. The first one I want to share is still a work in progress ... It is a home for our chickens.

Maybe we can't call them "our chickens" if we don't actually have them yet... But Andrew has been hard at work getting us prepared for when we do get them.

Oh yeah- I guess Andrew isn't the only one who has been working hard on the coop ;)

(what do you think of my fun new photo toy- the 'hipstamatic" app on my phone? These remind me of the polaroids my grandmother would take)

Monday, July 5, 2010

Fruits of our labor

We have spent a lot of the past couple months gardening (obviously not blogging)... And tonight we had dinner of our harvest: the pasta had roasted squash and eggplant, the caprese salad had tomatos and basil, and even the flower arrangment had zinnias-- all from our garden!

It is so fun to take a little tour in the garden and see how things are coming along... The cantalope and watermelon getting bigger and the black eyed peas getting longer and the corn getting tassled. Elisha likes to ask if he can eat a basil leaf or cherry tomato when are there together ... Funny how he thinks they taste better outside directly off the bush ;)

(I think my blogging will pick up again now that I have figured out how to do it from my phone! ;)

Sunday, July 4, 2010


We have spent the past few days on this porch... And it has been delightful! Family ( lots!), homemade peach ice cream, and me knitting sweaters- this is becoming our 4th of July tradition.


Happy 234th birthday USA!

Friday, June 11, 2010

down in the dump

we have been having a tough week here. i think some of it is just the natural trough after the high of birthday month... and speaking of birthdays -- my two children, who are now officially a year older, have decided to do various things they must think are indicative of older children.

anna is a climbing maniac. every time i turn around she is on a kitchen chair about to climb onto the table, or climbing up the outside edge of the stairs-- you know, the part i can't baby gate her away from! she has also decided that she is old enough to use a fork and spoon by herself. for a while now if she had anything utensil-like (a pretzel stick for example) she would try to use it to scoop up food... the past few days she has taken it to another level. i gave her some pasta salad, the perfect finger food = macaroni noodles, kidney beans, chunks of cheese... she refused to eat it. i thought she must not be hungry, so i put her down.... next thing i know she has climbed into elisha's booster seat and is trying to eat his leftovers with his fork!

elisha has decided that big boy three year olds don't need diapers or pull-ups during their naps... that hasn't always worked out so well...but the worst is that he isn't really even taking naps at all. he is repeatedly coming downstairs... i'm at the end of my rope. and i'm realizing that i feel entitled to a few hours of free time every afternoon. i don't know how to make it with out that time... i kind of want to quit my job... but i kind of can't.... something's got to give and i know that it is my attitude. and then maybe i will be able to train him to at least stay in his room for an hour rest time...i have to accept that the 2-3 hours i used to get, while wonderful, just wasn't meant to last forever. excuse me while i pout a little... on another note, remember that wonderful side effect being 3 had on e? he was obeying w/out fussing b/c he was a big boy 3 year old... well that has gone out the window this week. apparently 3 year olds are their own boss, they yell "no" to their parents when told to do something... maybe the naughtiness is related to the nap boycott...

these things are enough to make life a bit hard around here, but there is something else that is weighing our hearts down right now... we lost andrew's dear mama mae a week ago and while we rejoice at the thought of her dancing in heaven, we just miss her so much that it hurts. i'm having that heavy chest hard to get a deep breath feeling right now... but maybe later i'll share some of the interesting questions e had about it all.

Friday, May 28, 2010

happy birthday to my big boy!

isn't three so old! elisha is such a charming three year old... i could tell that he wanted to act like a three year old... which to him meant saying "ok mama" when i told him to do something he would normally fuss about. he pointed out how he wasn't fussing... how he was being a big boy... it was so pleasant... for the 3 minutes that that game lasted ;-)
he is such a sweet, fun, funny little person. we feel heavily blessed to have him in our family...
my my, little man- you and your stick-up hair certainly rocked our world three years ago! we like it.

(the top picture is elisha laying on the quilt i made for his preschool class project for the school auction... in case i don't do a feature post on it later: i had each child do a drawing w/ fabric markers onto a white square and then i quilted it together with other fabrics. andrew became quite attached oddly enough, and bought it at the auction ... i'm still not sure if he really likes it that much, or just wanted me to feel better about all the time i spent making it ;-)

i really do have lots of posts waiting... we have been going ninety to nothing with birthday celebrating {sorry andrew and otis- i didn't do birthday posts for y'all!}, getting our garden planted, and quilting... speaking of-- i'm off to keep working on the big 3 & 3-0 party i'm throwing for my guys...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

my things have found a home...

in this precious shop! Green Pomegranate is in VIrginia Highlands (a neighborhood in Atlanta) and they just opened another shop in Serenbe. The woman who owns the shop noticed anna's tiny red shoes when i came stopped in back in january. she asked where i got them...did i sell them... did i want to sell them. apparently she has been looking for baby shoes to sell in her shop and hadn't found any that suited her. she loved my designs and so we went from there. i told her that making all the shoes myself was not an option--- luckily she employs a few seamstresses and is having them make the shoes. i spent some time perfecting my pattern and then passed it off and then i just had the fun part to do- pick out fabric!
below are some of the girl's shoes-- aren't they so cute displayed on a cake stand!

the shop is focused on re purposed fabrics... "The mission of Green Pomegranate is to honor the handiwork of our mothers while nurturing the future of our children."

here are some of the boy's shoes ;-)

sorry for so many pictures- i just think the shop is so very cute... and of course the shoes are too ;-) it breaks my heart that anna can't wear my handmade shoes anymore... all that walking doesn't bode well for fabric shoes!