she won!

Island Auntie’s proposal received the blue ribbon!   My sister wrote that she is amazed by all the support she received.  I told her that I was not.  She is an incredible person and anyone who knows her would do whatever they can to help her out. People who don’t even know her, in this case, were happy to assist too. Thanks again for helping push her into the top spot.  I promise I will stop pestering you now….

Anna at Three Sneaky Bugs was the winner of the giveaway.  Have you seen Anna’s blog? She comes up with some great activities to do with her kids and has sewing and knitting collaborations with her mom.  Her sister sews too. I still can’t say what the giveaway gift is, but I plan to post a tutorial next week. Anna, I will be in touch about your fabric preferences, etc.  

The top photo is from a recent trip to a fire station in a sizeable city nearby.  My BFF’s dad is the recently retired Deputy Chief, so the Little Guy and I got the grand tour.  It was like heaven on earth for our boy.  He got to “drive” each truck in the station, slide down the pole, and see a few trucks go out on calls.” What a fun afternoon. Here are a few more pics:

Thanks Deputy Chief! We will tagalong with you any time.

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celebrating…plus a small favor

This rather large bundle of fabric was my personal little way of celebrating the arrival of our baby girl.  I really have no business buying more fabric, but I have been dreaming of dresses and allowed myself to shop away.  From top to bottom:  the two dots are Patty Young’s Andalucia, then Amy Butler’s Belle, the apples and the one just below them are Sandy Henderson’s Farmers Market, followed by three from Joel Dewberry’s Aviary line, another Dewberry but this one is from the line called Chestnut Hill, more Amy Butler, plus some of Heather Bailey’s Freshcut and a bit of Tula Pink’s Flutterby.  I think the green check is Holly Holderman, but I really can’t remember.  All purchased at Quilt Home, which has a great selection and excellent customer service.  I probably won’t make any dresses smaller than a 2T because I’ll want her to wear them for longer than a month or so, but it will be fun to start developing a handmade wardrobe into which she can grow. Now, if she will just let me sleep through the night, I could get to work.  

On a totally unrelated note, could I ask you a small favor?  My sister, known in these parts as Island Auntie, has written a grant proposal that will allow her family of three to make their modest and amazingly sustainable two-bedroom home on the Big Island in Hawaii truly off-grid and more environmentally friendly.  In a word, they are seeking more solar power so that they can become less dependent on a noisy, less eco-friendly generator.  The deal with this grant is that the public chooses the recipient.  So if you have a moment, please click over to her proposal, scroll down half-way to the VOTE button, and give it a click.  You’d be helping out an amazing little family a ton and I would be extremely grateful. Here is the link.  Thank you!

not everyone loves a photoshoot

But sometimes screaming baby photos are just as cute as the smiley ones. Especially when the baby is bundled in a gown that was handmade with love by her Grandmama.  And wrapped in a blanket made by a friend from my work.  Lucky kid!

When I opened the gown, I really did not think it was homemade.  I asked my mom a couple of days later and she told me that she made it herself.  I hope to one day develop the patience and skill to embroider little details like this sweet lamb and include them in my gifts, but until that day arrives, I will leave all the super cute stuff to my mom.  She’s great at it.  Thanks Grandmama!

The handmade gift giving was extended to the big brother.  Smoothpebble sent this adorable little camo pouch to him complete with an ice cream truck that fits his Thomas the Tank Engine tracks.  Now the trains on the Island of Sodor no longer go without dessert.  Phew! Thanks so much , Jackie.  He loves his new truck and his mom has sort of hijacked the pouch for her purse.  (And that outfit you sent with the elephant print is perfect in so many ways.)

i actually finished sewing something

A very small something.  And it took me two days to complete.  And it’s just a simple 12.5″ quilt block.  But I finished it.  And it makes me happy.  

Thanks to Jacquie and her Project Improv for the inspiration.  I am not normally one to create something that isn’t carefully planned out in advance, so this was a challenge.  My little block will join others on a pink and orange quilt that will be donated to charity.  I think Jacquie has over 150 quilters working on this project, so you can imagine the amount of work she has cut out for herself.  Generous indeed.  

Back on the home-front, all is well.  Thanks to everyone who sent such nice well-wishes after my last two posts.  The baby is doing great and her big brother is very sweet to her.    He calls her “Soupy” which is kind of close to her actual name.  The little voice he uses when he calls her is just precious.  He is desperate for her to sleep in his room with him and wants to give her all his stuffed animals every evening before bedtime.  He has even offered her his special “Doggie,” though we all know he wouldn’t be able to sleep if he wasn’t snuggling with that poor ragged pup.  

Alpine Auntie and Alpine Baby came for a wonderful visit over Valentine’s Day weekend.  Lots of time for two toddling cousins to play and for an Auntie to hold a new baby.  One of the nicest moments was visiting with my godmother’s mother.  Here is what 90 years plus three weeks looks like:

mrs-r-and-s

And here is what three cousins squished into the back of a Subaru Outback Impreza looks like:

Good times!

new threads

A big thanks to Jen for the new onesie!  She loves it.  As does her mom, of course.

sweet

jan 2008 sjd47

Just a quick note to say hello and let you know that all is well in our tiny corner of the world. Our sweet baby girl joined us on Tuesday, January 20th and we are in absolute love. Click into my flickr if you’d like to see more.

to give and to receive

When you make your own gifts, one of the best feelings is knowing that the recipient truly appreciates the handmade item that you gave them.  This Christmas, one of the best moments for me was when my brother’s girlfriend opened up the apron I made her, put it on immediately, exclaimed, “now I feel like I belong in the kitchen,” and ran back to the stove to fetch the delicious mussels that she was serving as an appetizer.  Such a nice reaction.

The only thing that is better than giving a well-appreciated gift is receiving something handmade for yourself.  Here is where Alpine Auntie comes in.   From the moment she picked our family when we divvied up the gift giving over the summer, I thought – I hope she makes us a quilt.

Well, she did.  And I love it.  And each family member has had a turn napping with it on the couch.  So, so pretty!  When I put it away every evening in the basket that sits on the floor in the living room, it is always carefully folded and placed on top.  So that I can catch glimpses of it when I walk by.  It makes me smile.

Of course, I have inspected her handiwork and am so impressed.  I think I need a lesson from her on hand-binding.  Her blind stitching is impeccable.  The funny thing is, I think I may have taught her how to blind stitch.  She’s certainly perfected the art.

Thank you Alpine Auntie.  As you know, this beautiful quilt is already much loved in our little home.  We couldn’t have received a sweeter, more thoughtful gift.

The last image is of the quilt all folded up with two special gifts I received from City Auntie and Grammy.  The stack of Amy Butler August Fields fabric is destined to become a new spring bag, just for me.  Wow, is it gorgeous and has such a nice weight.  The pincushion, which was  handmade in Guatemala and purchased free-trade, now brightens up all of my little sewing endeavors.  I plan to buy a whole lot of gorgeous linen very soon with a gift card that Adventure Auntie gave me to a wonderful fabric store.  And Grandmama tells me I just may become the owner of a red and white ticking skirt that I was hoping to have made for our Christmas tree.  I guess it pays to have a blog.  ( Ha ha.)  You end up receiving the most perfect gifts!