Thursday, July 31, 2008

Wash My Cloth Goes Holiday

If you know me, you will be astounded that I am thinking about Christmas gifts already. I know, it's crazy. I didn't say I was 'making', just thinking. And preparing for sale on Etsy.com. While in Chicago, I made some cute Christmas stockings from dish towels and always get compliments on them as they hang on my Grandmother's dry sink.

Here is a sneak peek at some of the bargains I found in Chicago. There is a great store there, hidden from regular shoppers. In fact, I introduced this place, 1730 Outlet - TAG, to Meredith. Meredith pretty much knows about every shopping and dining experience in Chicago, so to introduce something to Meredith is quite an accomplishment. Anyway, it is similar to a Pier 1 Imports, all discounted. They have all seasons and holidays, all the time. They have mostly housewares, but mix in fun accessories. I also got some of these at Cost Plus World Market, which we REALLY need here in Buffalo or anywhere in the East. I'd travel.


Not so sure about the last batch, these are napkins and not towels. I hope I have enough fabric to get a decent sized stocking out of it.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Clam Bucket and Other Ramblings


I forgot my camera. No pictures of the finished Clam Bucket. However, in a last minute decision, I added a fork roll. Pictured here with crayons, but used for the tiny little forks you use to retrieve those pesky little clams from their smooth home. The bucket turned out great and we were very proud of it. Gretchen did a great job assembling it and coming up with all the ideas.

Here is a nice story about the author of my number one favorite blog Simplemom with Amanda Soule. This was an interview of Amanda Soule. She is what I want to be, when I grow up, or retire. The Simple Mom site has some really great articles in it as well, check it out here-not just for mom's, either. Simplemom

Please check out my best bud's blogs, MK in Chicago (first post in a LONG time) and Lisa of GWhizstudio. They inspire me, truly.

I was buckling Sam into his car seat (I know he can do it on his own, but sometimes the act of securing him into a seat to be safe, fills my heart) when he said, "Mom, I am glad you are home. I like you."

I am glad to be home, too, Sam.

My Wife HAS to Use the Bathroom

Ah...long night.

I had an amazing time in Chicago. I met some new co-workers, finished a proposal, and visited both of our company offices. After a very filling meal at the owners new home (Thanks, Jeff), he and Meredith dropped me off at the airport. I was right on time and had 10 minutes to catch the sixth (I think) inning of the Cubs game before we boarded. Standing in line, casing the passengers, I caught the dreary mother with two young girls, a stroller, a car seat, and two bags. One part of me thinks, 'wow, I am impressed, I don't think I could do that' and the other is, "oh, please don't sit near me and cry". As the first group was boarding, the little 5 year old says, "I have to pee". The dread and frustration on the mother's face was imeasurable. They had come from Portland, OR and been traveling since 8 am. It was now 8:30 pm. I took her bag and car seat and waited for them to get done in the bathroom. Then I carried the carseat and one bag down the very narrow aisle into the very last row. It amazed me all the men that commented on "oh, that's a big carseat" or "wow, Britax, those are expensive" and those that didn't need to say anything with their mouths, but their eyes read "don't you hit me with that huge carseat as I am so comfortably leaning into the aisle in my fancy shirt". Why diss the helper OR the mother of two traveling alone?? And I can only imagine what the mom was thinking after more then 12 hours of this.

I sat a couple rows from the back of the plane, we began taxing and I got settled in for a quick flight home.

And then, it happened. Some dufus (can I say that in a blog?) instructed (yes, instructed) his wife to get up and go to the bathroom as we were ON the runway waiting for our chance to take off. After the flight attendant sent the wife back to sit down and fasten her seatbelt, Dufus began. He rudely waved his hands for the flight attendant (large bald man) to come over. He then proceeded to cuss and demand that his wife has to use the bathroom because "she has to pee really bad". OH, well if she has to go REALLY bad. Dufus settled down, but not really and his wife was belittled, not for the first time, I am sure. Oh, and Dufus was right next to me across the aisle.

We begin moving again, only to stop again. All the cabin lights come on, the flight attendant moves to the front of the plane, looking out the door and welcomes in the Chicago Police. Walked down to us, asked Dufus to leave, Wife wanted to leave, Dufus instructed her to stay and he left. No commotion, no surprise, no nothing. Peacefully walked off the plane.

Wife then went to pee, but only after the recommendation came from the flight attendant. Wonder if she can do anything on her own. That makes me really sad.

I was asked to be number one witness. Maybe I'll get a free flight out of it.

Oh, also, Dufus made us wasted so much gas that we needed to refuel but couldn't because the thunderstorm that we almost missed came in and they can't fill gas in thunderstorms. So we sat on the runway for another hour.

The getting home was late, but I learned a couple things:
1. It's nice to help out a mom.
2. Always pee before you get on the plane.
3. Don't be a Dufus.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Callan Comfy

I really have been busy, but I just didn't get around to taking the pics. My second purchase on Etsy.com were these cool labels from Mommie Made It. Her family used to own a printing shop and now she makes labels and graphic designs. I love these, it takes the handmade blanket to the next level and makes it look and feel like a 'real' blanket.

This is flannel that I fell in love with. I thought it was a good mix of non-gender colors. I wish I knew what parts that little Callan baby had...still growing. We will find out mid-September.

I also received a commission to make 9 wash towels for a very sweet lady in Norway. An update: towels complete, paid for and boxed up. Off to ship them this morning. Norway? Wow.

Things are coming along nicely, I am feeling good. Perhaps it is the 12:30 am to 5:30 am straight sleep time I have gotten the past two nights - thanks, Oscar.

Busy day today and tomorrow, lots of work to do for 'work' and then tomorrow is shower day. I'll take one, then going to Callan baby shower in Rochester in the morning, coming home and co-hosting a bridal shower in the evening. I didn't get a picture of that gift, but Gretchen and I were pretty busy. We work well together, she pins, cuts, and snips, I envision and stitch. Hopefully, I'll remember to get a pic before it is 'opened'.

I was making cookies for the Saturday evening shower (turned out adorable) and Sam was sad that I was going to another adult shower. He was asking what they do at a shower and I said, "We give gifts to the people to help them fill their home, like pots and pans and towels and dishes."
Sam said, "and soap?"

Maybe...

Have a great weekend everyone, I may pop in on Sunday - but if not, I'll be back late next week. I am going to Chicago to meet some coworkers, have my mid-year review and visit with my best pal, Meredith.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Car Fabric

I may not have the daughter I thought I wanted to shop with and dress up and do girly things, but I have my O. This is one boy that appreciates fabric.

We went to JoAnn's and once we found this bolt, O had it on his lap and cried when the lady at the cutting table needed to make the one very fast cut. He loves JoAnn's. I think mostly because they have been doing major construction and the parking lot usually houses a couple excavators or dump trucks or diggers. Good times.

I bought this several months ago and just didn't know what to make it into it, and it became "car fabric". We would lay it on the carpet, and he would sit on it, getting mad every time it would bunch up when he twisted or stretched.

Knowing then that it was destined for a blanket, I finally did it. Using fusible batting, I stitched it together. Must say that I am not all that jazzed about the fusible batting, makes the blanket too stiff. Maybe washing will help.

So, as I was sewing in the basement (proper digs!) on my discount store table that shakes when I engage the presser foot, little O places his cheek at the side of the table and allows the vibrations to rattle that little, plump cheek. That boy surely makes me laugh.

Car fabric.

Now THIS is Summer

Thursday, July 17, 2008

July 17th

This month is nearly over before it has even begun. I signed up Sam for tennis lessons a couple months ago, thinking that July would be good, summer will be half over. His tennis lessons ended today.

I wanted the summer to go by fast for a couple reasons:
1. It is hot and we don't have air conditioning, which makes working a sticky damp mess.
2. No real scheduled activities for the boys, other than tennis.
3. KINDERGARTEN!!! I am so excited for Sam to go to school. I know he is going to love it.

But now, I am wishing the summer wasn't half over. Next month, Tom starts his first official semester of Pharmacy school and with it a jam packed schedule. I basically become a single, working mom as of August 25th. Tom will help where he can, but with the schedule he has with a couple nights of work and an evening of curling, I think he will be maxed out. (I forgot to mention all the studying that will be mixed into that as well). Thankfully we have our mothers to help out with Oscar, but it will still be a challenge.

So, after all this rambling, I am going to try to focus on the day to day. Our family calendar is only four weeks, I need to only look that far ahead and enjoy the trips to the pool and the playground and the stops by the ice cream truck (our neighborhood visits have increased with two new trucks!).

What else (I am on the laptop and the question mark button doesn't work)$
I had a couple sales on Etsy.com, very happy about that. One dud that never paid, oh well. Also had a commission to Norway that is boxed up and ready for sending once that is purchased. I was a little nervous about that commission, I should have billed a down payment, but 'janne' seemed so kind and had 100% positive feedback on etsy and is only a buyer. Hopefully, she will wake up Friday morning and click that PAY button.

Today, I met (cyberly) a gal that dyes, spins, and knits, she seems really cool. Check out this amazing roving she dyed. She also has a blog entitled Ba Ba Black Sheep Yarns which is added to my weekly reads.

Working on the third blanquilt, have a neat idea about this one, hope it works.

Oh, the birthday party was great, hot and wet. It is amazing how musty a house can become with a gaggle of folks with wet feet! Thank you all for the gifts (I am really slow on the thank you's - please forgive me), but mostly thank you for being kind to our boys and for loving them.

Have a great week!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Nest

Nest Maine.blogspot

If you are a knitter or crocheter, I thought I would share this link to a project to help keep the warmth of the summer through the cold, long winters.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Happy Birthday, Little O



Oscar has an affinity to cars and trucks and can name many makes and some models. Yesterday he wandered into our neighbors garage, where Mr. Jim was wiping down his brand new red Corvette. He had taken it out the previous day and was getting that spot out (imagine - Out damn spot, out.) that was on the windshield. Man, oh man, that is the cleanest garage I have EVER seen, I wanted to lay down on the floor and feel its cool, clean, cement floor(that is an odd image, isn't it?). Back to the story, along the wall are shelves with metal cars displayed (none with a speck of dust). Oscar believed it to be a store, picking out his car, then changing his mind, calling out names of cars, so cute. And Mr. Jim gave O a metal racing Corvette. He wanted a different one instead, but agreed with the cool Corvette.
And our next bit of news...Oscar trumped Sam in the "I am two years old and I no longer wish to sleep or nap in my crib" decision by two days. Tom is out buying a mattress as I type.

To that little guy that always keeps us guessing and that makes other people nervous when he falls and that puts cars in lines with such precision and that wakes up happy and that boy that makes us laugh everyday. Happy Birthday, Oscar! I love you!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

I Made It and It Made It!

That's mine, left column, second from the bottom. What you are seeing is the screen shot taken around 9 am on July 5th, when my blanquilt was on the FRONT PAGE of Etsy.com. Here is a link to the blanquilt. I am astounded at the amount of views I have received.

But there is one problem.

Not one sale.

I know, I know, a lot of people saw it and made it a favorite, but even a little sale would have been nice, right?

Saturday, July 5, 2008

July the Fourth - 2008


We had a very low key fourth this year, as is becoming our trend. Tom was busy scraping, priming and painting our front window in the blazing sun. I was corralling the kids - best I could, all the while wondering why we aren't swimming or picnicking or playing. We did get to the town pool before it closed, which is a great time to go. You get excellent parking as folks are leaving and you don't have to beg the kids to leave since the pool 'turns off'. Then we decided to brave the traffic and see the fireworks. We normally stay in the car, so it isn't so loud. But we found a parking lot where we could set up our blanket right near our car, in the event 'someone' got scared. We were doing great, even Oscar after the second day of no napping. The show didn't start until ten o'clock and we were in our car at 10:06 (at the latest). We sat directly behind the trees that had a clear view of the display and some of the white noise fireworks made both kids uncomfortable. So we left. And found tons of people parked randomly in the parking lot, chairs out next to the car, watching. I don't think they were too pleased with us. But, in doing, we were able to see where the best places are to view. Our spot next year will be stellar.
Hope everyone had a safe and relaxing Fourth!
(oh, the headphones don't play music, they are sound protectors)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Pick Up

Oscar said, "Hey Mommy, let's go pick up hot girls."

"What did you say? Sam, did you hear that?"

Then Sam replies, "I don't want to pick up hot girls, they will burn me."

So true, so true.