Monday, July 31, 2006

Work to do, moments to keep

Blogger seems to be having photo issues AGAIN. So, I may have to add them in later. (Maybe the third time's a charm?)

I snuck into Jack's room to take a photo of him sleeping. I have very few of those photos, because his sleeping requirements are pretty rigid, and lately he seems like a very big boy. Some of my favorite things about Jack right now are:

* The way he says bye bye at bedtime. He waves with one finger, and I can hear him in his bed saying bye bye to everything he knows. "bye bye pons (thomas), bye bye tes (teletubbies), bye bye mama, bye bye dada..."
* His language! It is so awesome to hear him say Flowers and Bird and Duck and Mess and Gross and Monkey, I could go on and on.
* The way he knocks on the front door when we come home and asks "where are the kitties?"
* The way he sits in my lap and reads books for hours on end.
* He can put his own train tracks together now, it is amazing to see what he comes up with.
* The sudden need to have both clean hands and a clean face, and the way he asks me to wash them for him.
* His really genuine love and affection for his Dandy (the security blanket.) He is actually EXCITED to see it when he discovers it lying on the floor, he runs over, rubs it all over his face and just coos with joy.
* Oh my, I could go on and on. He is really getting to a terrific age for all of us.
And, I especially love the little "person" he is!

Saturday, July 29, 2006

It's too hot, but the luck is pretty good

Some pictures of fabric I rummaged up this past week. The ones on the top are my favorite, even though the photo isn't the best. (It's actually too hot to take the camera outside. It causes the lens to fog over after being stored in the A/C.) The ones on the bottom are cute too, but the pieces are pretty bitsy. There is also a piece of a cutter quilt (top photo) I bought for a dollar (maybe 4 feet square), that is lovely and destined to be something great.

And, in the middle (why does blogger plop the photos in such random order? Anyone know? The only way to avoid it is to load them one at a time, too much work), is Jack at the Festival of Nations, watching a drum band. He wasn't quite sure to make of all the commotion. We ate loads of interesting food, including Thai, Native American, Greek and some Ethiopian. I had been hoping to find some rose colored morrocan tea glasses (like this: Pink tea glasses about half way down), but no luck. I have been to every Middle Eastern grocery in St Louis, and still those things elude me.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Christmas In July

I really love Christmas time.When Dave and I first met we would always celebrate Christmas in July as well as traditional Christmas. I suppose it really started as a way to spice up the long summer months before Halloween, since I always need to be decorating for something! We slacked off this year, and I really decorated nothing (the 4th of July stuff is still up), but, because I have such a huge collection of vintage Christmas stuff that I love, some of it is out year round here and there in the house.

The picture above includes some silver glass bead garland that was thrifted this summer (so cheap I am embarrassed to say what I paid for it!); one of my most favorite things ever, the aqua star tree from long ago Germany (I am embarrassed to say how expensive it was!) which was bought in an antique mall on the long move back to Missouri; a Target Rachel Ashwell Shabby Chic box from this past Christmas (that I desperately wanted and Dave bought for me, and then filled it with most awesome tickets to championship figure skating!); and a big Martha Stewart glass jar from K-mart filled with some of my favorite vintage ornaments (I was able to buy nearly a 1,000 of them in Florida in 2 short years. In Missouri I have very little luck finding them, and am lucky to add 2 dozen new ones to the collection each year.).

Anyway, one day late, but Merry Christmas In July to all!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Alive and Well

We have survived the horrible storm that blew through Saint Louis fairly unscathed. We lost some of our big maple tree, and it was a hairy few moments in the parking lot of the Costco, but, we are lucky to have never lost electricity of anything else of value. The pictures are amazing, and worth googling if you have a moment, and hopefully the National Guard and AmerenUE will have everyone else in Saint Louis back in good standing very soon.

Jack seems to think that buckets are hats. This is despite the fact that he will never actually wear a genuine hat, no matter how hard I try. I especially like that the bucket he has chosen for his head says "Hard." He is one hard headed kid indeed!

This is what has become of the thrifted sheet from a week or so ago. Being at home with Jack all day has made a mess of my clothes. I own nothing without stains or holes. So, I decided I needed a new apron. While having a browse through a recent Tie One On, I discovered the smock. Ahhh, smock of my dreams. I am SO, SO pleased with how it turned out. It's perfect! I had the perfect vintage green button for the back, and it just looks so lovely in all it's flowery goodness. Plus, it was a chance to use my very small, very beautiful vintage hanger. Who puts millinery flowers on hangers? I love it. Now, if I can only find the guts to dirty the thing up with toddler fingerprints, and playdough and V8 Fusion....

P.S. Can any help me solve my making a pretty link dilemma? What I am trying isn't formatting correctly.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Martha Stewart Sponge Ball. It's so easy to make your own! Cut 4 sponges into 16 pieces total. (So cut each sponge in half, then each half into half again.) Stack them together in a 4x4 square, gather the middle with a rubberband. Voila! Your very own sponge ball.
While I was cleaning out the pantry and putting away the Costco stuff, Jack was reading the cookbooks. He loves reading just about anything, books, magazines, newspapers, etc. He is really in love with this NOLS cookbook that my Eagle Scout husband has had forever. He makes me read it to him every day. I am here to tell you, reading an outdoor cookbook may be fun for baby, but not so fun for mama!

P.S. Is the font better for you yet?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I left Jack alone for a moment the other day, and I returned to find him sitting on the kitchen counter digging through this pile. These are thrifted developmental learning materials, and he loves them. I only paid $0.80 per box, and at first I only picked up 4 or 5 of them. Then I actually left the thrift store! Silly me, I knew I made a huge mistake and went back to buy more of them. There are all sorts of interesting things in those boxes. Puzzles, inch cubes, graduated wooden cylinders (for learning about spatial relationships among other things), cards for putting stories in order, stencils for fine motor skills, I could go on and on really. A great buy, for both of us. (BTW, that is a big pile of fat old cat lying next to him, lol. I guess the cat likes them too.)
Lucky me! Look what the mailman brought me. It is a bit of a long sordid tale, but, I bought a vintage stuffie pattern off Ebay and when it arrived it was incomplete. (This after I paid more than $20 for it.) I was desperately googling trying to find a replacement, when I stumbled upon another blogging crafty mama who had recently purchased the same pattern. I nervously emailed her, (it felt a little wierd to email a virtual stranger and say I was desperately coveting something she had), and she was kind enough to photocopy the pieces I was missing for me AND she sent me these lovely, amazing bits with the pattern! I cannot wait to use them. Thank you Krista, .

P.S. I am still having some font troubles with the new template, if you cannot read anything, please let me know. I know the links fonts need to be changed, but my husband reports he cannot read the post text either. (It looks fine on my machine, so feedback is needed!)

Sunday, July 16, 2006

My project for the weekend was this pretty board for holding the mail. I saw one like it in the new Pottery Barn Teen Catalog (Yes, I get all their catalogs because they are eye candy.) Who could afford $179 though? Maybe I should be selling these things after all.

So, I made my own. Vintage fabric, some new ribbon and another message board from Target that I scavenged for parts. I love it! Gee, it was hard to do with Jack running his cars all over it while I was trying to staple though.

You can see the PB version here: Pottery Barn

This is Jack's beloved "vroom vrooom." The thing must be 30 years old. He rides it for hours every day. I picked it up at a rummage sale for $1. One of the best dollar bills I have spent this summer. I would love to have another for the basement, but, being vintage and all it isn't so easy to come by. Sometimes he takes Dandy for a ride too...

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Yesterday was my first weekday morning without Jack since he has been born. He was with grandma Jane, which was lovely, since I had nothing to do! I had breakfast, read the newspaper and did a little sewing. I modified a pencil pouch idea from Martha Stewart, and made a train/car pouch for Jack out of some Thomas fabric he recently picked out. I think it turned out pretty well, minus the little problem of having first sewn one of the ribbons onto the wrong side. I set it on his toybox for him to find this morning, and he was delighted to discover the cars hiding in there!
I turned my back for just a moment, and Jack jumped into the tub with all of his clothes on. I really like this photo, "Hey mama, why do I have these pants on?"

Monday, July 10, 2006


Well, thanks to my husband, I have new digs! What do you think? I think it is lovely. In fact, I come here once a day just to admire it's loveliness. So much better than the boring, dotty old template. So much more "me"!

We tried Jack in the toddler bed again this weekend. Looking at the picture you might be thinking, "gee, that went really well!" Do not be fooled. (Although I have no idea how something that started so right could end up so wrong.) For starters, I got lucky at Pottery Barn Kids. That blanket you see Jack there with is "dandy," the beloved security blanket. Dandy is a chamois blanket from Pottery Barn Kids, which also happens to make sheets in the same chamois fabric. Well, the crib sheets in the store here retail for something like $60. We happened to find one in the clearance pile, in the same color as Dandy, for $15. (Score!) The package said it was lightly soiled, but never mind that, there was really nothing on it, and I wasn't scared anyway, being the stain removal queen and all. LOL.
ANYWAY, we get the thing home, and drag out the toddler bed. While we are carrying it to his room, Jack is exclaiming "I try, I try!" I put the sheet on, and I swear, I have never seen my kid with such bliss. He rolled all around for more than 30 mins exclaiming "dandy! dandy!" (Of course, to him the sheet is also dandy.)
I had such high hopes. However, come bedtime, Jack would.not.sleep. in that bed. For anything. So, he and both Dandy's are back in the crib.
I understand. I am also very attached to my lovely nest (a.k.a. bed.) Sometime this week I will show it to you.

And, of course, I have been thrifting. This is my favorite, favorite, favorite sheet of all. SO much gorgeous fabric. I need a new project!

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Testing The Pretties

Just testing to see if the new template is fully loaded...

Changes coming

I am currently knee deep in trying to make my blog beautiful. (And lacking any technical skills, it is taking me forever and causing much frustration!) Anyway, big changes coming soon!

In the meantime, since I have been blogging Jack for over a year, I have started thinking it might be time to print ye olde blog. Anyone ever done anything like this? They seem to have some nice options here:

And, well, frankly, the blog is better updated than the baby book!

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Crafting it up, onesie style

Ok, so I went a little crazy after discovering yet another beautiful crafty blog. (, she has directions for this project on her website also). Which, BTW, I am desperate to redesign this blog, but I am having trouble finding the time AND figuring out how to do it. WAhhhhh! I want a beautiful blog that really shows my style too! Anyway, back to the onesies. The J is by far my favorite, but certainly Jack's favorite will be Pons (which is still a WIP, I need to finish the blanket stitching.) The circles are cute, but the embroidery over the iron on fusing was hard (I think I should have splurged on the special more flexible fusible underlay) and the lines aren't as straight as I wanted them to be. And the fabric is more flowery than I would have liked, but the choices at Joanns sucked. I have loads and loads of beautiful vintage femine fabrics, but no little girls to sew for! :-( C'est la vie!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Independence Day

It has been hot, hot, hot here. We went to the O'Fallon Heritage Days picnic for the holiday, and honestly, it was a dud. It is O'Fallon's sesquicentennial this year, , and I expected more hooplah! We did enjoy good BBQ though!

Jack had a really rough night last night, up from about 4 till time to rise for the day. He is currently napping, and to celebrate my survival, I made chocolate strawberries. We recently made the switch from Sam's to Costco, which is really convienently close to the house, and I am loving having pounds and pounds of fresh produce. Organic spring greens for dinner? No problem! 4 lbs of fresh strawberries for the holiday for like 5 bucks? No problem!

The best part of the picnic was the petting zoo. Jack enjoyed all the animals, but especially these special white fluffy chickens.

Just a pretty sign from the picnic. I love the graphics, even if my photo could have been better. (Hey, it was hot!)