Thursday, February 26, 2009

Friday Roundup

Oh boy, I have a LOT to fit in one post here, so hang onto your lederhosen.

1. Most importantly, my trusty assistant and I have chosen a button tree winner. Drumroll please.....the grand prize winner is Michaele !

Thank you SO much to everyone who entered. I sincerely appreciate those of you who also came to enter a contest and decided to look around and stay awhile. I hope you will continue to visit with us here. :-)
2. This is Jack's contribution to frugal Fridays, penguin bowling.
Isn't he a corker? This game cracks me up!
3. My contribution to frugal Friday: If you go quickly to Start Sampling you might still be able to get in on 24 free months of Parenting magazine. It's legit, it's where I got my country home subscription before country home died.

Speaking of dead magazines, today I discovered that the final issue of Hallmark magazine is the Feb issue on the stands now. That mag was really starting to come into it's own, and I am so bummed about this magazine carnage. Country Home, cottage living, O at home, Domino, CRAFT, Home Companion, Hallmark, Wondertime, the list seems to go on and on doesn't it?

4. Last Friday at school Jack reported he was "tackling" on the bean bag when he was poked in the eye by a little friend. When we picked him up, he was rubbing his eye a lot. After an after hours phone call to Children's Hospital and one "emergency" visit to the ped on Saturday morning, we discovered a fingernail shaped gouge in his cornea. Never mind how ticked off I was about the whole tackling thing (what are you doing teachers?!?!), I know that hurts, I have been there before myself. And it was only 7 days after the double ear infections.

So now we had to go to the ped's office on a Saturday morning when he only sees sick kids. I bet you can't guess what's going on over here again?

Oh right! Jack is sick again. Pffffffffffft.

5. My in laws are coming. In two rounds, only a day apart, 8 days from now. (Jack reminds me every day how much time I have left, lol). Did I mention my in laws are coming? LOL You all know that means I am about to go into insane woman mode, right?

I have two big projects I am hoping to get done in the coming week, but understandably blogging is going to be sparse here for a bit. Between the in law visits, a big consignment sale, a constantly sick kid, my own sinuses troubles that will not go away and my insane need to bleach everything we own to prepare, I am cutting it close.

In fact, I may need to revisit that need to take up drinking. :-)

(Kidding. Maybe.)

See you soon!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Cheap and Cheerful

So, it's Feb. 25th and I went to a yard sale this morning.

Oh yes I did. The only thing I bought were some postcards. I display them on top of the television in this photo holder thingy I bought like 10 years ago at Target.
It is killer hard to find cards for St Patrick's Day, so I made a spur of the moment decision and decided to go with horseshoes for St Pattys.
Good wishes works too.
I bought this one purely because it was in German. I think it says something about Birthday wishes at the top. When you translate the bottom portion on Google you get: "lab me everywhere always taste your friendliness." HAHAHAHA! I love on line translators.

Translation is obviously a job meant for humans and not machines.
The bluebird was too sweet to pass up.
More birds and horseshoes.
Changing up the display a bit.
This one makes me laugh too. She is putting the napkin on his lap and the caption says, "Permit me Mr Good."

Postcards are the easiest collection to store. I keep mine in an archival photo album so I can just flip through and pull out ones to display.

A fistful of postcards for 6 bucks. (There were more even!) Not too shabby.

And with that, it's nearly 70 degrees again today (we are having the strangest winter), so I am off to go paint in the sun.

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Three plus one

Thank you all for your kindness. For everything, the book love, the grandma love.

I am sitting here wasting away the afternoon for an hour while Jack watches Curious George and I thought I needed something else at the top of ye olde blog.
So how about a crazy kid with a jelly face and a cockeyed hat?

(Love that mess in our backyard that has been lying there for months. LOL I say.)
And this is the view from my chair. Three lazy bums. Look at them there!

Not a care in the world. Content to just shed all over the couch we just vacuumed.

Ah well, I hate that couch anyway. Last week it tried to swallow one of them. He crawled under the thing when we had the recliner on it up, and he got swallowed up when I closed it without knowing he was under there. (He never goes under there!)

It was hairy (literally and figuratively) for a minute or two.

I bought some really cool things today at the scrapbook store, hopefully I will be back soon with a Projik'! and a button tree winner. :-)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Stitched together with love

The last of my beloved "adopted" grandparents died early Friday morning. I loved this lady so much that I am not even sure I can find a single thing to write here without crying all over the damn keyboard.

She made the best apple pies ever (and I am so thankful that a few months ago I asked her to write down her recipe for me).

She was always, always kind and sweet and gentle and thoughtful.

She never failed to tell me that Jack was a beautiful, special little boy.

We worked on a quilt together recently and she sent me a really beautiful thank you note (which I cannot find right now and that makes me sad because I am so sure I kept it) which said something to the effect of: Sarah, your work is beautiful. It is so much nicer than what I could have done on my own and I could never thank you enough for your help. That meant to the world to me.

So today when they mentioned her quilts at her funeral, I really lost it. She made beautifully simple quilts. Tiny 2 inch squares, always stitched together by hand. They are not masterful works of art, but scrap quilts that her kids and grandkids and great-grandkids use and love.

And they were stitched together with love.

Just like she and I were. Not bound by blood or obligation, but stitched together with love.

When I get where I'm going will always remind me of you Grandma. I hope that you and Grandpa are up there reunited, watching over us, with Grandpa sneaking cigarettes ("Don't tell Grandma I am out here smoking!") and you keeping us all stitched together with your love.

I miss you already.

P.S. We've been to church twice this week. I know that would make you laugh, since you were always on me to go to church more! Your passing has brought up a lot of questions for Jack about life and death and what has been happening to you. (How long will she sleep? How will she move now? Where did she go? When will I die? When does everyone die? Why does everyone die?)

Unlike my usual waffling self, I told him exactly what I *know* to be true this time. You are an angel in heaven now. I may still be riding that religion fence, but if ever there were an angel, it's you.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Not this projik again

At exactly this same time last year, I spent many, many days reorganizing the sewing room . It looked nice and everything was where it belonged.

And it was totally unmanageable for me.

It took me way too long to look in 12 different bins trying to find coordinating fabrics to use for sewing. When I went to cut 5 inch squares for a little vintage fabric swap I recently did I realized that it was Valentine's Day and I still had piles of fabric sitting out from projects I did at Christmas time.

Not to mention I was in there for HOURS trying to find 20 different fabrics to cut for the swap, the whole time saying "I KNOW I have such and such fabric, WHERE IS IT?!?!"
After seeing a lot of the stash interview photos from Sew Mama Sew , I decided to ditch all the containers and take all the fabric out of the bins and the armoire and the hat boxes and and and... you get the idea.

My husband upon hearing my crazy new plan could be heard saying "Not that project again! We spend more time in there organizing." (He isn't wrong, it's always a mess and I cannot seem to find a system that really works for me long term.)

So now all of the fabric is just out there. It's visually noisy if I spend any time looking at it, BUT, it is easy to find fabrics when I need to and it is a lot easier to put it away.

We'll see how long it lasts.
While I was at I decided to redo the glass fronted cabinets in the kitchen. They are a catch all for everything I need to keep away from busy little fingers and it was starting to really bug me.

I put up new paper and put just the milk glass in them.

I still do not love it, but honestly, I have tried everything I own in those cabinets and I cannot find anything I really *love* in there. It's at least tidier than it was.

Which says nothing for the messes on the counters under those cabinets and the messes around those shelves, etc. Organizing is always makes a bigger mess than I started with for awhile!

Didn't I say I wasn't going to do the organizing thing this year?


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Let's celebrate

I've been keeping a secret from you.

And it's been hard.

But the time has come to share!
Oh, look at Jack. He knows that something good is coming.
Look! What's that I see?
My button tree!

Right there, inside that book ! My button tree!

Talk about exciting.

Thank you Susan for asking me to be part of your gorgeous new book.
Because I am absolutely thrilled to be a part of Button it up , I made another tree to give away to one of you.
All you need to do is leave a comment here (be sure to leave a way to contact you please!).

Next week my trusty assistant and I will draw a name and send one of my button trees onto a new home to celebrate.

Don't forget to order yourself a copy of the super cute book online or look for a copy in your local bookstores around March 3.

You do know I will be in the Barnes & Noble taking a picture of it there, don't you? LOL (And if you lived closer I would make you go there with me, just to see my button tree in the bookstore.)

Good luck!

P.S. Want to see my other button crafts? I've made Mother's Day Cards , Button flowers , Button butterflies , Button candy canes , and a REALLY old one, a button wreath !

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A conglomeration

Jack is on the mend and happily working on a gigantic puzzle, and it is so nice to be back to our regular routine with one another.

Let's do a little catching up.
It was so warm for so long here that mother nature is convinced spring has already arrived. My crocuses are up...
the daffodils are up and the maple tree has buds on it.

Too bad we are back to winter!
The last valentine from the heart to heart swap was from Emilie. Can you believe she made 14 of these and all done with a pretty young baby at home? I think I will keep mine up long past Valentine's Day.
I was really struggling with deciding what Valentine to make for Dave this year. When I saw the squirrels at Little Acorn it was love at first sight. I am a novice at papercutting (this was my first attempt), but it was actually easy. And Dave and I both LOVE the result. (In fact there has been some debate over where said Valentine should live. LOL)

And a note from the Jack files:

I've been feeling bad that this year Jack missed all the Valentine parties at school and both of his best little friend's birthday parties (Jack LOVES parties), so I've promised him we can have a St Patrick's Day party. Yesterday I was trying out a minty brownie recipe I thought we might use for the party when in the middle of mixing I really *had* to use the bathroom.

I left him with my expensive kitchenaid mixer beating the batter and strict instructions to NOT TOUCH ANYTHING.

I came around the corner back into the kitchen and heard my mixer make the most awful noise and spotted him desperately trying to return it to the down position. Thinking I should just let it go, I added the flour to the batter and moved on when I noticed him holding part of the mixer!

I take the part and go to put it back on when I see that I need a screw to put it back on.

"Jack, where is the screw?"

(He points to the batter.)

"Jack, tell mommy where that screw is now."

"It's in there! (pointing to the batter again)."

Oh my, he really did put part of the mixer in the brownie batter. I had to sit there with a spoon and go fishing in the brownie batter. LOL

Oh well. It could have been worse , at least he didn't swallow it.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Heart to Heart Swap, Take 3

Well, after a short morning nap, Jack woke up in very intense pain from his ears, so off to the doctor we went. Double ear infections. On the one hand I appreciate that doctors are really trying not to overuse antibiotics and have you keep your kids at home if they "just" have a virus. But, on the other hand, I find all of the conflicting information very frustrating.

When you call on the phone about fevers (and we have phoned about that on more than occasion), you are told by the nurse not to even give them tylenol unless they are in pain and that the fever is not dangerous until it reaches 107. (!!) And yet, when the doctor sees my kid and sees his fever is at 103.1, he immediately sends the nurse for tylenol.

Anyway, Jack has had no fever since a few hours after the first dose of antibiotics and is back to his usual bouncy self today. Thank goodness.

Another round of the heart to heart swap:
Look at the heart shaped yo-yo's from Sarah ...
and the inside;
And these super sweet hearts from Melissa remind me of sugar cookies...
my pictures don't show how thick they are!;
When I opened these hearts from Rachel (who is blogless) I thought I would faint. So many wonderful 1930's patterns, it was really hard to choose which one to keep. She found a bag full of quilt pieces in the thrift, awesome eh?;
Saucy really came through with these altered playing cards, complete with glittery Eiffel towers...
and heart charms and more!

Gorgeous. All of them.

There is one final Valentine which I will get up tomorrow, and then we are on to something *really* exciting around these parts which involves buttons and a big giveaway.

Happy Valentine's Day to you!!

Friday, February 13, 2009


Well, Day 3 of high fevers over here. Jack has done nothing but cry, sleep and watch many, many, many thousands of hours of television.

I have not slept in days, nor had a shower. Jack has missed every day of preschool this week. The exhaustion + worry* + work = me unraveling today.

The doctor's office says he needs one more day of this before we should bring him in.

In the meantime I will be here coming apart at the seams. I need to go find something quiet I can make while I sit on the couch with him to ease my mind and pass the time.

*Really, the worry is the kicker. I do not deal well with worrying about my kid like this for this long.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Heart to Heart Swap, take 2

Argh. Jack has had a pretty high fever for two days now. I have been up and down all night because he kept crying that he was "WAY TOO HOT" and that he "needed to get up" (at 10 pm, midnight, 1 37 am, 3 55 am, 5 am, obviously NOT time to get up). Aside from preschool head colds, he is a crazy healthy kid so this is really unusual for us.

And now I think the dreaded puke train is coming for me.

If there is an interruption in service you'll know where I am. Ha.

And with that pleasant thought, more of the 2009 valentines.
These matryoshka dolls are from Jane .
These things are crazy fun.
Each layer opens up to reveal a new doll...
and eventually you get to a little paper doll card. Really, these are amazingly clever. I should go submit them to Whip Up or CRAFT for her, stat!
Cute paper bag Valentine from Kim ...
and on the inside;
Sweet little art cards from April , which have an insert I just now noticed (d'oh!) that says "home is where the art is";
and our very own penny pockets from Amy .

The Valentines this year were simply amazing. And there are more! Are you drooling yet? Inspired? Waiting in line to sign up for next year? :-)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Heart to Heart Swap, take 1

I really should have been cleaning up this mess today while Jack was at school. I am doubtful he is well enough for school today, so I guess my sewing area reorganization disaster is going to stay a disaster for another week. Ha! That list never gets smaller does it?

Ok, onto the Valentines.
Fun cones from Shara ;
A quilted love note from Rosemary ;
sweet little birdies from Courtney ;
and toadstools (you know I loved those!) from Barbara .

More Valentines tomorrow...

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Making like crazy or crazy making?

Before I even start, what is it with 4 year olds? Mine has TOTALLY lost the ability to entertain himself for even a millisecond.

I know people are chomping at the bit about the heart to heart swap, but I don't want to spoil the surprise for everyone yet, so hold tight!
These little ladies are part of the reason why I have been a crazy lady for the past month. Making oodles and oodles of them as my contribution for the heart to heart swap this year.
Cute as buttons they are. But they can make a lady crazy making so many of them.
A few close up shots.
Little flowery dresses, aprons...
millinery flowers.

Sweetness abounds. (Jack says some of them look "naughty". It's the eyebrows. LOL)

The rest of them will be on my soon to expire Flickr Account. LOL It's on that never ending to do list. (Am still feeling seriously swamped.)

P.S. Someone asked about closer photos last week, don't forget you can click to enlarge my photos.