Friday, January 30, 2009

literal translation

Imagine you're three years old and you hear you mom tell someone on the phone that they are breaking up. Do you see where I'm going with this? I was on the phone with my mom, she was driving through a hilly area, hence the breaking up part. When I got off the phone miss E came over to me with sad, teary eyes and said, "What is break up?" "What does break up mean?" Oh, poor thing, she thought Big Grandma was broken and hurt. I assured her that Big Grandma was fine and that I just couldn't hear all of her words while she was talking on the phone. With a big sigh of relief she hopped away!

Okay, this picture has nothing to do with the post but it was too cute not to share. Don't you just love those people with their curly hair tips?!


Oh yes! They are done. I finished the kimonos for my girls using
It is a great pattern to follow...simple, easy, beautiful. The only reason it took me a little longer to finish was because of the binding. I have insecurity issues when it comes to the bias tape...but I ironed a lot, used lots of pins, and psyched myself up and it all worked out. Whew! I also made some capris for each girl to match.

So? What do you think? The girls love them and think that they should be doing karate while wearing them. Thankfully, I got them to stand still long enough to take this picture. I am loving the colors (and yes, the pictures are accurately bright)...they just scream SPRING!!!! The yellow fabric is from my Hawaiian stash. The pattern on the fabric is a variety of Hawaiian quilt designs.

Okay, now all I have to do is figure out how much to enlarge the pattern so I can make one for myself!

just after

Sorry, I didn't take a before picture of the girls room when the bunk beds were still stacked. I went through several months of pics to see if there were any accidental before shots, but there weren't. Their room is small and doesn't have the best lighting so I don't normally take pictures in there. I did, however, take an after shot. Prepare yourself for lots of pink stuff...and bare walls. That's next on my list for this room...pretty curtain rods, a new light fixture, and some simple art. On the girl's list...paint for the paint, naturally. No matter what gets done next, it's always nice to rearrange.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

yarn yearnings

Sunday was the day my mom brought my yarn stash...from my grandma. Oh, what a stash it is. I've got so many things I want to make, and now I can. Here's a little peak of the stash.
Believe me, it's just a peak. For sanity's sake I put the rest in the attic so my husband would not be overwhelmed. Right away though, I had to try making some crocheted hearts. Valentine's Day is coming, after all. I found a great tutorial here and I gave it a whirl. This is my first one. Not too shabby considering I had to do several new things. Oh, and I did have to redo it a gazillion times to actually get it to look like a heart, but, hey, it's done...and it does look like a heart! Yes, I think I"ll make more. :o) Well, the winter storm arrived. It was supposed to bring us some snow, but all we got was ice...again.
This is what my azaleas look like today. Poor little things. They had buds and new little baby leaves on them and now they're covered in ice. I sure hope they survive.
Stay warm.


No, I'm not talking about some cockamamie (yeah, it's a real word and I spelled it correctly...I checked) scientific theory or a miracle drug that can make your hair thick and shiny while also helping you lose weight. Nope, not at all. I'm talking about the my girls' beds. Since miss E moved from , ahem, the kitchen to the bedroom with miss O they have been in bunk beds. Well, if you know me...and since most people that read this are family or close friends.... then you know that I like to rearrange. A LOT. And once I rearranged the living room and dining room right after Christmas I just couldn't stop. So we de-bunked the beds (and no, there's no definition to apply that word to bunk beds, but I like it and I'm sticking to it) and moved things around....which led to the need for the new curtains. Speaking of which, I put them up today. Can I just say, they are just perfect....and they're lined! Hmmmm, if only there were a few more just so I could have some of that fabric in my stash.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

good things

We've been pretty busy around here lately. Not busy like going here and there, just busy like enjoying family time, playing games, sewing, making changes, and spending time with friends. Here are a few of the good things I'd like to share.

Cold days often keep us inside (and it's been COLD) so my little people have enjoyed playing all snuggled up in my old quilt. It's heavy and warm and so soft with age.
On THE coldest day our friends (which includes the one) came over to play. That's the whole gang together eating a little snack. Most of the other pictures I got came out blurry because there wasn't much stillness once they began playing. But, oh, what a fun time we all had! It's amazing what big smiles are brought to my face when I am sharing coffee and conversation with a dear friend.

Here is my favorite shot of the Some of a Kind/Clothesline Chronicles playdate. Yes, I know it's blurry and the only kid not moving is Henry...apparently he froze because he got caught holding the only doll around! :o) hehehe! Adrienne, I thought you'd love this one! Adrienne and I had a nice time sharing our WIPs over a cup of tea.

This one, well, I was so excited about this one that I was actually a little faint with excitement. Let me explain. I have been wanting some new, pretty curtains for the girls' room for a long time. But, you see, I'm not paying full price for curtains...they're expensive! While we were at Target yesterday Tim found this beautiful pink, 200 thread count, 100% cotton curtain panel on the 75% off clearance rack for a mere $3.74!!!! It was from the Dwell Studio to me...and I loved it. Immediately I dug through the remaining items only to be disappointed that there were no more. Only one panel...I need 4. I clung to the one panel trying to justify buying it. I mean, after all, it was nice, beautiful material. I'd pay more than $3.74 for that much fabric at the fabric store. Plus, I could cut it up and use it for valences or something. Then I looked at the back and saw a picture of a room with a crib and I thought...Dude, I've got to go check the baby section to see if there are any more over there. Oh, I was hopeful...yet it was doubtful. I quickly shuffled calmly made my way to the baby section, and low and behold, right there for all to see was a clearance section with more curtain panels. Oh, how many? Will there be enough? (here comes the faint with excitement part) There were 3 more panels!!! I snatched them all off the shelf and backed away slowly so that no one would be alerted to my fabulous find. So I got 4 beautiful curtain panels for a mere $14.96!!!! They were originally $20 each! That is a savings of $65.04!!! So now do you feel my excitement??? I thought so :o)

One more good thing. Signs of spring! Yes, it's cold and raining/sleeting/supposed to be snowing today, but when we had one warm day of a whopping 50 degrees the girls and I went for a stroll through the neighborhood and in my flower garden I saw some tulips peeking out to say hello. Don't worry, I covered them with leaves so they won't freeze. You're not alone little tulip buds, I'm ready for spring, too...she said with a smile

Monday, January 26, 2009


Often times I wonder why in the world it takes so long. All I told her to do was go to the bathroom and wash her hands so we could eat lunch. Well, after waiting for a long time I started to hear a little singing. This is what I found....
...yep, as she washed her hands she got carried away with a tune. Head back, singing loud, and drying her hands. The song? I have no idea...I was laughing to much to notice! But, if you're going to sing it may as well be in the bathroom...the room with the best acoustics.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

calories, coconut, and cookies....oh my!

Remember those cookies I raved about? Well, it has been requested that I share the recipe. I am more than happy to share the coconut-y goodness with you but I cannot be held accountable for your inability to eat only one. They are delicious and will test your willpower, taunt your taste buds, and tempt your inner cookie-loving-sweet-tooth self. I have no calculations of grams of fat or sugar, nor do I have the number of calories they contain...but go! Go bravely into your kitchen and whip up a batch of these beauties.*
Coconut Macaroons

3/4 cup sugar

2 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut

2 large egg whites

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

pinch of salt

  • Preheat oven to 325 F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper

  • In a large bowl, combine sugar, coconut, egg whites, vanilla, and salt.

  • Dampen hands with cold water. Use 1 1/2 Tbs. to form mounds then place on baking sheet. Space them about 1" apart.

  • Bake until golden brown, 16 to 17 minutes, rotating halfway through. Let cool on wire rack.

Martha Stewart's new book, Cookies, is where I found this irresistible, gluten-free recipe.

*I highly recommend making the cookies smaller than instructed...then it's easier to justify eating two instead of one! Also, I couldn't find unsweetened coconut so I used sweetened, shredded coconut and reduced the amount of sugar added to 1/3 cup.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

two down

Oh my goodness...look who lost her second tooth!
It was getting really loose and I kept asking her if she wanted me to pull it out but she would say..."Don't worry Mom, it'll come out on it's own."
Today during our much needed rest time it came out. Yippee!
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coming soon...

Oh yes...I've got another sewing project in the works...a W.I.P. (work in progress) as the crafty people in the blogging world call it. Pattern has been made. Fabric has been cut. Bias tape has been painstakingly ironed. Now all I need is a little time to actually sew it all together.

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I will be making some fabulous kimono wraps for my girls. I found this great, free pattern from Amy at Habitual . Oh it's just too great to pass up. I am going to use some of my golden yellow Hawaiian fabric...and the bright pink is going to be the trim. Bright, I know. There is just something about this frigid weather that makes me yearn for spring, warm sunshine, and blooming flowers. Well, since I am well aware that winter is not ending any time soon, I have decided to create my own spring by using some seriously bright fabric. Now, that color combination would not normally go over well with me but once I saw this fabric line and this one I was hooked on those colors...and thankfully I have them both in my stash! Yippee!!! I will also be making some capris to match...they'll be solid pink with some of the yellow as a ruffle at the bottom. I'm so excited! I do hope that it all turns out as cute as I imagine it to be!
I have also completed another project but I can't show it to you right now because it's going to be a birthday gift. Now, you wouldn't want me to ruin the surprise, would you? I didn't think so. I promise to show it to you as soon as the birthday girl receives February.
Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

ta da!

I have finished all six kidlet wall pocket-tidy totes! What a wonderfully easy and fun tutorial. The directions were easy to follow and the illustrations were very helpful. Thanks to Jennifer of JC handmade for sharing this tutorial. Now, although the tutorial called for interfacing to make the bags firm I didn't use any because I didn't have enough, nor did I have the right kind. I did, however, use nice, thick, mattress ticking from my fabric stash for the outside of the kidlets as well as the handles. For the inside of each kidlet I used a different material...all from my stash. I am so pleased with the outcome. The girls love them. Now, they can keep some of their smaller things more these pretty totes. Oh, being more organized makes me feel so happy, giddy, even a little faint with excitement!
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wuv, twue wuv

...through the eyes of a six year old.

It began with this picture of miss O and well, the one.

Then the beautiful sunset and blooming heart flower was added.

Lastly, the three important words!
Oh, and by the way, this is a "picture of them marrying."
(notice the fancy dress with puffy sleeves)

Friday, January 16, 2009

warm thoughts

Although we're nice and cozy in our home with the sewing machine humming, the coffee cup steaming, the sock feet sliding across the floor, the fuzzy robes wrapped around us's still nice to think warm thoughts on the coldest day of the year!!! Care to join us?

ready for a wagon ride

splashing in the tide

heavenly view on Maui

miss E practicing her strokes

beach on Molokai...Tim catching some waves

miss O happy with her swimming lessons
I feel a little warmer now...don't you?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

today is brought to you by the letter "p"

Pretty Indian girl picture by Miss E

Perfecting her penmanship

Preschool practice
Precious picture with personality by Miss O

Perfect penny-pinching organizers....thank you Dollar Spot at Target

Progress on the Kidlet project
Pleaded-for pocket guide...priced just right $3.00

Play.Pretend.Prance around.Produce.Perform.Plan.Patch up.Pray.Progress.Praise.Prepare.
That about sums up my day so far. Keep warm.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

enough with the screaming monkey already!

Yep, I actually said that. It's the first time and almost certainly the last time that I will say such a funny exclamatory sentence. But in the spirit of doing, saying, cooking, building, or sewing something for the the first time let me take a moment to entertain you with a list of firsts so far in this new year...with a little explanation, of course.
First, the title of this post...words that I never knew would fly out of my mouth in such a ridiculous combination, yet they did. Which, by the way, made everyone in the house stop what they were doing and look at me with surprise. The reason...Miss E got a new toy, a little learning laptop, which is fabulous and fun and educational. However the character that she interacts with is a monkey that says and does silly things to keep it interesting. What she quickly learned, after finding the volume control, was that if you continually push the mouse buttons the monkey will "scream" over and over and over and over. You see, I'm not crazy, and I usually have a very high tolerance for noise producing toys, especially educational ones, but coupled with the volume set on ear-drum-bursting loud...I had heard enough. Hence the "enough with the screaming monkey already" statement.
Second, after looking through this fabulous list I have already printed 5 tutorials, made and gifted one, cut out the material for 6 of these, and am eager to schlep up to the attic (on a much warmer day so I don't freeze up there) and retrieve some of my most favorite fabrics that I have horded and used very sparingly since I bought them when we lived on Molokai. I tell you what, living in Hawaii really lends itself to acquiring some fabulous, colorful, local fabrics. Anyway, cutting, planning, sewing, and especially a willingness to use some of my Hawaiian fabrics this early in the year with excited anticipation...definitely firsts for me.
Third, I love to try new recipes. Using a recipe from this book I made the most wonderful coconut macaroons that I have ever had. Mind you, I made them for Tim really because they are gluten free and there aren't many treats that are gluten free, affordable, and delicious. Seriously people, they taste just like coconut cream pie. Just.Like.It. Very difficult to resist, have no idea how many calories and fat are in them, but I made them small so we, I mean he, can enjoy them. Also, I made a stew called Winter Squash and White Bean Stew from this book and it just didn't work out for me. My in-laws ate it and said it was good. Tim ate it and said it was good...he even said he'd eat it again because he like that it was different. I ate it and my taste buds were confused. I love me some butternut squash. I also loved everything else that was in it. The problem? It had cinnamon in it. The smell was throwing me off. I was expecting something quite savory but the cinnamon was weirding me out. It wasn't a bad stew, in fact we ate it all, but the smell confused my senses. I don't like to be confused...especially when I'm eating.
Oh, there are a few other firsts that I have probably forgotten, but I'm pleased with my start to the year and I hope that you are pleased with yours as well.

Friday, January 9, 2009

introducing dottie... first completed sewing project of 2009.
I found the pattern for this Pointy Kitty over at Wee Wonderfuls. There are lots of other free patterns over there but I had to start with this kitty. I made Dottie with the help of some very eager little girls. Miss O got an awesome sewing supply kit for her birthday and she couldn't wait to get started. Lucky for us, Aunt Phyllis, who just loves cats, had a birthday and we thought this would be the perfect gift. Out of her new stash of fabulous fat quarters Miss O chose this psychedelic purple polka dot fabric.
The reasoning behind this choice?...."Aunt Phyllis just loves colorful things!" Then out of my little stash of felt the girls chose orange for the stripes. She turned out a little wonky and one of her legs is shorter than the rest, but I suppose that is to be expected when little hands are guiding the fabric as I push the pedal. Besides, it gives her a spunky personality to match her colorful coat.
Dottie was fun and easy to make. In the pattern instructions it warned that turning her inside out after sewing would be difficult. I didn't think so, especially since I have the perfect tool for turning all of those pointy handy dandy chopstick! The part I found the most difficult was the tightly stuffing of the pointy places. My chopstick usually does the trick, but I have some stuffing that is unusually slick...polyfil...and it took some man-handling to get it to cooperate. I suppose I should stick with cotton stuffing from now on. Anyway, it was a fun, quick, super-cute sewing project for the girls....and we just know that Dottie will enjoy her new home.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

a (creative) year in review

I know I'm not the first to do this, but after seeing several collages out there in blogland of projects made throughout the year, I had to give it a try. I wasn't sure that I'd created enough things over the past year to even warrant a collage but as I looked through my monthly photo folders and clicked on each look-what-I-made picture I was completely surprised by the outcome. I made a lot of aprons...and I must confess, most of those were created in the month of December. However, there were burp cloths, bird mobiles, pen rolls, curtains, camera strap covers, ornaments, shirts, bean bags, skirts, dresses, GPS cases, play-doh beads, special blankies, costumes, and tissue holders. Wow! Who knew? I had no idea that I had actually created so many things in 2008. That's pretty exciting....and motivating!
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Now, I've never been much of a resolution person, but keeping those creative juices flowing is definitely something I'd like to sustain in 2009. First thing on my list...well now, I can't really tell you...but I'll show you when it's done. And, hey, if you're looking for some inspiration to get those creative juices flowing for 2009 you have got to skip on over and visit Ellen at The Long Thread. She was kind enough to compile a fabulous list of the Top 100 Tutorials of 2008! Seriously! Now, if I could just squeeze a few more hours in the day....

Monday, January 5, 2009

pow wow wonderful

The Indian Pow Wow birthday was a huge success! Miss O was thrilled with her cake and all of her Indian gifts. She got plenty of regular presents but it's tradition to find gifts that go along with the theme. She got a tee pee, bow and arrow set (suction cup kind, of course), books about Indians, a headband with long Indian braids, the set of Powhatan Indians from the cake, and of course the birthday outfit. I normally make a dress with fabric that matches the theme but this year I decided to branch out and go with a skirt and vest. They both turned out great. Also, let me tell you, I had a hard time finding little Indian people for the cake. I searched high and low...then I went to A.C. Moore. Sheesh! I should have gone there first. They always seem to have the perfect thing. Note to self: Always check A.C. Moore saves time and prevents panic and headaches!
Thanks to all for the birthday wishes.

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Now, Miss E is ready to plan her party...a princess party. SWEET! That should be a piece of cake! Yes, pun intended....and I have until the end of May for that one. And if you were wondering, yes, Miss O has already decided on her theme for next year...Ballerina birthday. We'll see if she changes her mind by next January!

Friday, January 2, 2009

whoa....six years old today!

Happy Birthday to Miss O!!!!
Here you are just hours after entering the sweet.

At 7 months you already had a love of books.

At 18 months...growing, talking, learning and amazing us every day!

Time at two years old you're about to become a big sister.

So cute at three...sweet, smiling sister with sassy short hair.

Four years old and full of life...what a good girl you are.

Wow! Five years old is huge! Reading, writing, drawing...the best story teller in the world! What an imagination!

Now you're SIX years old! How did you get so big? Riding bikes and scooters, reading chapter books, building incredible things, playing with your sister and helping her learn. What a gift from God you are...we are truly blessed.
Happy Birthday Baby!