Thursday, April 28, 2011

Kids make everything better

I love you guys. Sincerely. Thank you for your comments and emails and kind words. Why is it the days fly by when you're having fun, but when you want the emotional unrest to pass the days take their time to linger? I'm sure a scientist person would tell something about perception and days are always the same length and blah blah blah, but I'd probably just gesture rudely. At least my nephew provided me with a 1-2-3 punch of amusement tonight...

First, I said to him "Hey, bud, should I go to my aerobics class tonight or stay home and make things?" He put on his thinking face, then said (making the gesture and everything--the one where you kind of hold your hands like you're literally weighing the options) "Smaller butt or arts and crafts.....bah, stay home and make something." I don't know why but I almost cried (in a good way).

Then (and I'm still chuckling over this one) he went down the basement to practice shooting hoops (he has one of those over-the-door basketball nets set up in the perfect spot for practice lay-ups...or something). I heard him moving the bench my dad is refinishing and I went downstairs to make sure he didn't touch anything he shouldn't have when I saw him at the back door. Our basement door opens out into a set of stairs that lead up to the backyard. He's got the door open and is just standing there (and there's nothing to see but concrete). When he turned around, he was ADJUSTING HIS WAISTBAND. I said "Uhhhhh hey--what were you just doing?" And he looks at me dead serious and says "Taking a leak." My jaw dropped and I was doing a shocked laugh kind of thing, and he says "I do it all the time. There's a drain right there." SUCH a little man already.

Finally, I had pulled out my box of fancy papers and other stuff and was sitting at the table making little flowers (which I'm totally doing a tutorial for--so easy and fun) and he was playing something on my computer. He turns and says "I like when it's like do that stuff and I play, but we're still sitting here together." I don't think my heart can take much more this week.

Anyways, my pal is doing better, but as the saying goes "Time heals all wounds." I hope it's true. But a sweet nephew helps too. I talk about my nephew a lot but I rarely put his face on here. Here's a picture of him in all his glory:

As Meream wrote to me the other day "I want to be like him when I grow up." Me too.


I should be excited. My birthday is Sunday. The sun has been shining. I've had my fill of Cadbury Creme Eggs and Marshmallow Peeps. Life is good. But something terrible has befallen one of my close friends, and it is consuming all available space in my brain. I have gone through my work in a daze, driven here and there in that fog where you don't even remember how you got where you are going. All my thoughts immediately tend towards this situation, which ultimately has no bearing on me other than it deeply affects people I adore. It's the ultimate sort of helplessness--knowing there isn't a single thing you can do or say to make things better. I try to keep things positive here on the blog, even on days where I'm not feeling it so much. But this I needed to share on some level, y'know--in the interest of keeping it real. So that's why I have nothing to share. My quilt is all basted and ready to go--but I have zero motivation to do it. I feel as though I can't bear the motion of quilting it, even though the idea of it delighted me so only a few days ago. I have a few small custom orders, waiting for assembly. It's a serious sort of funk, one I haven't been in for a loooong time. I almost don't know what to do--I'm so used to being busy and making things that when every fiber of my being is saying "Nope, not right now" I don't exactly know how to deal.

I'm hoping to have my soul refreshed by a certain nine year old boy who never lets me down in that regard. And if I can convince him to craft with me later, I might have something to show you if I don't goof it up beyond recognition. Which wouldn't be unheard of....


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

I Love Sugar. And I Love Pink. Perfect.

I came across the most delightful shop today, and I felt it needed to be shared. Usually I don't do things like this--I'm more of a "Hey, this is cute. So is this." kind of blogger, pulling things from here and there that I want people to buy me. But this shop is so yum I had to give it a whole post.

Let's start with the shop header:

The name itself had me at hello. Then I started browsing. And I'm pretty sure there will be some sort of funds transfer in my near future :)  Here are some things I am smitten with (the pictures are links--click to be swept away):

 Pretty swirly pastel lights. They look good enough to eat. There are all different themes and colors available. I want them for Christmas, Valentines Day, and Halloween. And some for every day :)

These light bulbs are unscented, but I can smell cotton candy through my screen. 

 I. Love. These vintage berry beads. They're available in all kinds of colors but I like the Christmas ones best--these could make the mostest adorablest garland.

 Isn't this leaf trim amazing? It looks real!!

A nice twist on the traditional streamers is festooning garland. And admit it--festooning something sounds like wicked amounts of fun.

Yes, please!!!!

My brain is doing twirlies with thoughts of what I could make for Christmas with glass glitter.

I'll stop now, even though I'm tempted to keep clicking and pasting. Go kill some time now instead of doing the things you're supposed to be doing :)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Before I wish you a happy Easter...

...I'm going to bombard you with pictures of how well I color inside the lines, so to speak. When I was a freshman in high school I took a ceramics class. It wasn't really ceramics since we didn't use a kiln, but you painted plaster and sprayed it with a finish and my friend's mom who took us called it ceramics so that was good enough for me. My brother used to tease me that I was a sixty year old lady. Then when I learned to knit in my twenties he'd tease me that I was eighty. Whatever. I do what I want whether it's acting eight with my nephew or eighty with my grandma. Sometimes I act my actual age, but this is rare. Anyway, for some reason I painted a copious amount of Easter decorations. This year, instead of scattering pieces here and there around the house my mom did the mantle for Easter.

It looks like a little Easter forest scene....

I made this little guy for my grandma, and when she died it came back here. My favorite part is the pearlized-painted eggs and the cute pink wagon. His eye looks like one of my eyeliner jobs, but his front teeth are cute.

My younger sisters were at that age where they wanted to do whatever I did, so my aunt bought them these and they each painted one (with the help of my mother). How cute is the one on the right with his hand in his pocket and his little pipe?

These little guys were my favorite. The chick is sitting on a little tree stump (the purple egg is blocking it). I painted it brown but it looked...inappropriate. My mother took one look and said "I think you need to paint that green to match the grass."

From one end....

...and then the other. That's a piece of that astro-turf stuff you'd carpet your pool deck with acting as grass. I'm sure my dad saved that because he knew in several years there'd be a need for it.

And this is maybe the easiest garland ever....

...plastic eggs snapped onto a ribbon.

So that's that. And now, I leave you with this:

Vintage image from here.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Welcome to the Jungle

Helloooooo!!! Can I just tell you it does NOT feel like a long weekend? And also that I am very excited to eat things tomorrow? Now that THAT's out of the way...

A girl I work with is going to have her third little drooler in June, and she asked if I could make her a diaper bag. Her nursery theme is jungle babies, and for once Joann's had the perfect fabric in-store AND online.
 Isn't that as cute as the dickens? Whatever that means...must research origin of statement.
(They don't have the image of the fabric I used online anymore--but I love this adorable panel).

She gave me fairly free-reign with the design of the bag. This always makes me nervous because I start thinking "Should I add this or that? How many pockets? How big?" When I tell you I asked 57 million questions I might be under-shooting the actual number. She had sent me a few pictures of styles she liked, and they were all basic and simple. I still didn't know what to do, though. She wants to be surprised with the gender, so I was nervous it might look too boyish but I didn't know how to girl it up without making it look girlish. Last Saturday morning I literally sat up in bed and said "Piping!" Literally. I felt foolish only briefly because I had the answer I was waiting on for a few months. Yes, I've had the fabric for months with no ideas.

But it all came together so quickly, from start to finish. It was a design-as-you-go adventure, so it took me a bit longer than it would have if it was something I'd made before. But it's so cute I wanted to buy a baby to have an excuse to keep it:

I adore the little monkey the most. But I love the doofy little grins they all have.

This is the lining. When you open the bag it looks like all the little animals are playing Hide-and-Seek.

 There are elasticized bottle pockets on the sides. I sewed multiple rows on the handle to give them a quilted look. And then there's the piping...

I. Love this piping. I love how it's soft and springy, and I love how cutting it on the bias makes it look like lemon candy canes. I wanted to keep making yards and yards of this for no good reason.

 One final look...

I think it ended up being fairly neutral. The yellow makes it not all blue and green, and the animal ears give it a touch of pink without anything pink being added. The outside pockets are each supposed to be on the other side but I didn't notice until after the point of no return was reached. I really love the look the piping gives to the bag. I have another diaper bag to do (but a much smaller one) that I'm going to do the same basic design for. But first? I must eat candy and quilt my quilt. Priorities, y'know?

I'm linking up here:

The Girl Creativecraft

Sumo Sweet Stuff
 Today's Creative Blog
Running with Glitter
Anything Related
Fantabulous Friday!
Iron Violet Designs


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