Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Deep Breath

Maybe I've being a little hard on myself....and I really need to take a deep breath! OK...here goes... (hmmm ahh) Now, that feels much better!

Despite my last self deprecating post, I have been having tons of fun this summer with my sweet husband and Jesse. A couple of weeks ago, for my belated Mother's Day celebration, we took a little trip to a strawberry patch with plans to make some yummy strawberry jam. I come from a long line of "canners," (at least four generations on my Mom's side) and nothing is more satisfying than a pantry full of jars of homemade strawberry jam!!!
After a brief instructional session with the boy, he was picking perfect jamming strawberries in no time. Jesse, who, by the way, will not even touch a grocery store berry, was shoving berry after berry into his sweet little mouth the whole time.

We did run into a slight occupational hazard, though, that we are now affectionately calling "strawberry-butt." (Next time, Jesse, don't sit on the strawberries!) :o)
And when we got home, we squished and squashed, and squashed and squished the berries until they were the perfect jamming consistency.
And after 5 hours of preparation (picking, sterilizing jars, mixing, stirring, and waiting to hear that amazing little *POP* that occurs when the jars have been sufficiently sealed) we enjoyed the fruits of our labor on Ritz crackers. I think he likes strawberry jam; don't you agree?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Oh how I long to be "Super Mom"!

I have to say that I'm feeling a little down on myself today.  I wish that I could be a super mom/blogger/crafty business woman like Katie Did or Soule Mama or Angeline!  Oh!  To be able to stay home with my amazing kid and have time, energy, and foresight to make amazing meals, homemade clothing, and fun crafty stuff for my house.  This mama can't even meal plan for a whole week, let alone blog about it (as you can tell from the rather lengthy time between blog posts lately).  So, here is what I'm telling myself to soothe the longing in my heart to do something amazing....
1)  There is a season for everything.  Just because I don't have time to do all the stuff I want to do now, doesn't mean that I will never have time to do them.
2)  I love my new job!  I love being a nurse!  So, although I yearn to be a stay-at-home crafty mama, I also love being an anesthesia-assisting, spectator of teeth-pulling!
3)  I do have some new projects in the works....whaa-att-aaaah (that's how an evil laugh is spelled for those of you who don't know).
Until then... we're just motoring along!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A girl just can't get ahead!

I wish I was the kind of person who could get ahead!  But no matter how hard I try, I am constantly down to the wire (or over it) with crafting deadlines.  Part of the reason why is that I feel like I need to have all my "other stuff" done before I can start creating.  Why do dirty bathtubs and mountains of laundry call my name louder than fabric and wool?!  I have no idea!  Poor Jared has been waiting since Christmas for his felted zombie (pictures to follow when I finally complete it!)!!!  But I finally did get my act together to turn out two little gifts for some of my sweet friends...and just in the nick of time!
Anna is having a baby boy any day now, so she received a diaper wrap...  Only this time, a friend of mine suggested using iron-on vinyl instead of using the sewn vinyl I had been using on the changing pad.  Who knew something so amazing existed?  It literally changed my life!  :o)

And for my sweet friend and neighbor, Jordan, I made her a little sewn zippered pouch, using a vintage zipper that I inherited from my grandmother's stash.  I found a tutorial here, but I tweaked the pattern a bit so I could use multiple fabrics.
I just love the bright yellow lining!  

Maybe next week I'll be able to get enough done to stock my shop again!  Happy crafting to you!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Hello, my name is Amy, and I'm an addict.

I have known for a long time that I am an addict, and there is no end in sight to the controlling nature of this addiction...

No, silly, it's not a vice (at least not in my eyes)...it's fabric!  And even though my fabric stash extends far beyond my crafty endeavors at this point in my life, I cannot stop looking for it, buying it, and oogling over it.  I dream about it at night, think about what I'm going to make with it when I'm at work, and spend hours online trying to find the best patterns.  I am in love with the fabric designs available now from Amy Butler, Denyse Schmidt, and Chloe's Closet, to name a few!  I cannot get enough of vintage fabrics either!  Every time I walk into a thrift store, I cannot consider it a fruitful visit unless I walk out with an armful of old fabric.
Oh!  How I do love the warm hues, lovely textures, and ingenious thought that goes into fabric design and execution!  It must be so cool for these designers to spend their time dreaming up beautiful patterns and actually seeing them used by crafters all over the world to create their own works of art.  I am in awe!  Check out a few of my favorite online fabric shops:

Happy crafting!!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Beanbag toss

Another birthday has come and gone for our sweet friend, Brayden!  It was his third birthday, and I wanted to make him something very special.  After much thought, I came up with this fun beanbag toss game.

Colorful circles sewn onto a dark blue, starry background, and a bright yellow print on back became the play mat.  I had a bunch of Pixar-print scraps from other projects, and since Brayden loves those characters, the scraps became the bag fronts.  The other side of the beanbags have coordinating fabric to match the circles, and Jesse helped me stuff bags with navy beans.
I sewed a little "Made for You, by Amy Plew" tag on the back, and voila! a special present for the birthday boy! 

Sunday, March 8, 2009

A bit about this weekend...

Jared's birthday was on Thursday, but I worked a 12-hour shift, and it happened to be one of the most terrible shifts of my nursing career (the kind of day that makes you ask yourself why you continue being a nurse), so we celebrated on Friday.  Putting Thursday's craziness behind me,  Jesse and I made Jared's favorite desserts - red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting (((YUMMY!!!)))

Jesse especially loved the frosting, as you can see, and we quietly celebrated the birthday of my favorite boy in the whole world!  
Saturday morning was super warm (a pleasant contrast the barely-above-freezing weather we've been experiencing lately), so we hopped on our bikes, outfitted with the kid carrier, and headed down to the river for some exploring.  The banks of the river are covered in discarded oyster shells, and Jesse enjoyed "finding" the shells, and putting them back in the river where they belong.

A gigantic pelican was on the shore as well, trying his hardest to swallow his fishy breakfast.  Can you see the shadow of the fish in his pouch?  He finally got it down with a bit of a fight.
And just because I cannot stand to waste a minute of precious sunshine, when we got home, we decided to plant a few seeds in anticipation of the oncoming Spring.  Jesse was fascinated by the wet soil, and how the seeds were all different sizes.  The pumpkin seeds are much larger than the tomatoes, aren't they?!

Lunch.  Then off the car for the nearly 2-hour drive to Jekyll Island, with the hope that Jesse would grab a nap in the car (he didn't, by the way), to visit Jared's brother who is playing in an ultimate frisbee tournament there.  It was a nice enough visit, with a birthday dinner of lowcountry boil (sausage, corn, new potatoes, and shrimp) for Jared, and then back in the car for home. 

We were nearly home, when the terrible gurgling of a two-year-old's belly broke the silence, and out came the most ridiculous amount of projectile vomit you could possibly imagine from that sweet little boy in the back seat.  Poor thing!  I jumped from the confines of my seat belt, and scooped up as much partially digested sausage as I could from his little lap in the pitch dark of the car.  It was all so terrible, that the three of us just had to laugh!  And after one more gurgling blow out, Jesse smiled, laughed, and said, "I'm done."  We laughed the rest of the way home.

All of that to say, I feel like I've officially been initiated into motherhood.  Jared and I waited so long to have a family, and whether we are basking in the warmth of Spring-like sunshine, or experiencing the really gross, unfortunate parts of being parents, I see that it's all a blessing.  I am so thankful to have Jesse in our life!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Crafting for Babies

My recent crafting has revolved around baby showers and birthday parties.  I love giving a bit of crafty love to a new generation, and now that the recipients have received their presents, here a few photos.

This puzzle ball found it's way into little Collin's newborn hands a couple of months ago.  It's made from a pattern found in one of my favorite crafty books, Last-Minute Patchwork and Quilted Gifts.  The pattern is super easy, and the triangular pieces are whipped up in an hour or so, and then pieced together by hand to form the ball.  Very fun to make, and addictive to play with (even for a grown up)!
This fabric beach ball pattern is from the Purl Bee (my all-time favorite place to find free crafty patterns).  Lillian is a pink and purple loving baby girl, but I really wanted to give her something with a pop of fun color for her birthday.  And who doesn't love a bit of retro orange and red flower fabric?!
(((Please forgive the horrible lighting in this picture!  I took it seconds before the party started!)))  This one is my go-to baby shower gift - a fabric wrap with 3 pockets (one for diapers, one for wipes, and one for a handmade changing pad).  The changing pad has a vinyl lining so it can be wiped off easily, and the whole wrap is trimmed in vintage pink binding.  There is a terrible lack of fabric stores in my area, so Walmart is my only choice in a pinch, unless I have three hours of my life to spend driving to and from Savannah with a nearly-three-year-old boy, who hates the fabric store!  :o)  But this fabric was so cute (even for Walmart), and I couldn't resist!  And I think that baby Mary's Momma will appreciate having all of the diaper changing necessities close at hand in a pretty pink wrap!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

crafting with the kid

Jesse is an artist!  We are so blessed to get a kid who loves to "make paint," sew, and be crafty.  It's been a bit of a challenge to find things that are age appropriate and can hold his attention, but we still try!  Here are a few crafts from the past couple of weeks: painting, embroidery, and making a mile-long paper chain to count down the days to Disney World.  Happy crafting with your little ones!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I am in love!

Since the first day I met him, I knew that Jesse would be a great addition to our family, but I never thought that I could love him this much!  He has made an undeniable impression on every life he and his story touches.  He is curious and smart with the most amazing facial expressions, and I feel blessed to be his Mommy.  He is the funniest thing I ever met, and I wanted to share some of his Jesse-isms with you.

*  Tylenol is "tiny lol."

*  Chocolate pudding is "chocolate penguin."

*  When he meets new people he says, "Glad to meet you," in his sweet squeaky voice, and shakes your hand.

*  When I asked him where God lives, he stated, "In a castle."

*  A couple of weeks after visiting with my family for the first time, Jesse was in the bathtub playing with a fishing game, when he grabbed up a green fish, held it tight to his chest and stated, "I just love Robin!!!"  (my little sister)

*  My mother-in-law told Jesse that we were going to hike when we go camping.  He grabbed my hand and said, "Mommy, let's close eyes and pretend we hike through Disney World." (his current obsession)

*  Jesse held onto this little heart-shaped rock for weeks after he found it on a nature walk.

*  He hates ice cream because it's "too cold."

*  If we're ever outside after dark he always warns us saying, "Watch out for the lions!"

*  He called us "Mommy" and "Daddy" from the day we got him.

I hope that you have a little love in your life, too, that makes you smile and brightens your day!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

a new year...just a little late

OKAY.  I know that it is 21 days into the new year, but I've been running just a little late for everything lately.  Thus I think that this post is more than fitting for my recent state of mind/life. {smile and sigh} I have been thinking and puzzling things over in my head regarding the start of a brand new year.  So many things have changed in my little world and I am enjoying them!!!  My adorable new (soon-to-be-officially-ours) son is the most amazing change in my life.  He is both a blessing and a challenge! (Why does he feel the need to rip books, lick counter tops and shopping carts, and pull the pee guard off his potty seat, sending a yellow liquid trajectory all over my clean pants ?) {another giant smile}

Which brings me to the real reason for this post - my promises to myself for this new year! (otherwise known as resolutions...but I really dislike that word...it always makes me want to quit before I get started...)

1.  I will spend more time laughing and less time getting frustrated.  (This includes pee on my pants that I didn't put there.)  I will let go of having an immaculately clean house, perfectly folded laundry, and a tidy craft room.
{my embarrassingly messy craft room}

2.  I will be more conscious and conscientious in my daily life.  This includes taking some important stuff seriously -  reading my Bible and praying, investing in friendships, playing more and fretting less, and getting healthy.

3.  I will make something every day.  I get in funks where it's hard for me to be crafty, even though I love creating.  This year, I want to have a pile of goodies on hand to give away and sell.
{happy craftiness}

I hope this new year finds you well, and with a whole new perspective on your life, too.  Happy (21 days into) 2009!