Little things

February 21, 2014 § Leave a comment

Been helping a friend get her daughter from school on days when her wee one is napping. Today she brought me wine and flowers to say thanks. Love!

It’s the little things, people.

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Catch Up

November 17, 2013 § 1 Comment

In the interest of brevity, I’ve decided to post a few quick things (and by a few I mean way too many but it’ll make me catch up) from the last few months. I’m still painting, scraping, taping and moving things around like a wild woman but the house is starting to come together. That’s a good thing because I’m tired of the dust, and if we (by we I really mean “I”) don’t finish soon-ish things may get ugly around here.

I managed to make two quilts for some special girls in my life. The quilts  are for sisters so they have a lot of the same fabrics but they aren’t duplicates of each other:

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Started to scrape the popcorn ceilings:

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Painted, then repainted, the walls in the boys bathroom:

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Decorated a clipboard so my friend’s daughter could take it to camp:

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Joined a CSA:

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Learned to can vegetables:

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Bought some awesome chairs and made cushions for them:

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Designed and made Jedi robes for the boys for Halloween:

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Cleared out ivy from a 10′ x 100′ space behind our retaining wall:

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Widened the walkway between the patio and yard:

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Cleared out a space for a play set:

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Then mulched it:

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Watched beautiful flowers grow:

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Painted rooms and hung shelves:

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Went to Berlin:

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Decorated a book bag for the little one:

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Enjoyed the splendor of fall out my back door:

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Dressed as Pop Art for Halloween:

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Enjoyed some time with the wee one:

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And now. Now I collapse. (okay, well, after I paint my kitchen cabinets)

Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda

July 29, 2011 § Leave a comment

I coulda/woulda/shoulda taken advantage of BOTH kids napping but decided to sit on the sofa instead. Do you ever do that? So seldom do I ever have “me” time. Instead of sewing (which, yes, that’s me time, too) I’m taking the day off to contemplate the finer things in life, like dinner and how I need to clean and do laundry, while catching up with my girl, Rachael Ray*.

I’ve seen this episode before but who doesn’t love Sofia Vergara?

*photo courtesy of rachaelray.com

Handprint Christmas Tree Skirt

March 7, 2011 § 3 Comments

I worked my fingers to the bones. Okay, well, not to the bones, but I put in a lot of hours in on this tree skirt.  I figured out that I spent something like three or four minutes per yo-yo (making it, attaching the button then attaching to the tree skirt). And there were 100 yo-yo’s. That’s a lot of minutes. The tree skirt was a HUGE success though, and worth every minute I put into it.  The auction was a blast and the tree skirt sold for a pretty penny, which makes me happy. The tree skirt went to a friend of mine and I know it will be well loved for years to come. That’s the reward for me.

For anyone wondering, and on the off chance you want to make one, here are the instructions.

I began with nine fat quarters and, basically, made a gigantic nine patch. I started with an 18 1/2″ center. I decided that the tree skirt would look more symmetrical if the center was square. I added a fat quarter to each side of my green center,  then took three more fat quarters and stitched them together along the short side (the 18″ side) to make a side panel. I repeated this to make two side panels.  After the side panels were made I attached them to the center panel. Note that the side panels will be larger than the center panel since the center piece was cut smaller.

Then I assembled the back. I started with 1 2/3 yard of fabric. I cut off the selvedges and stitched a 10″ x 60″ strip to each side of the main fabric. I placed the top over the bottom, wrong sides together.

To make sure I accurately cut the center and opening of the tree skirt I found the center of the green square by drawing a line 9″ from each side.  I then used my blue chalk marker and drew an approximation of the circle size and opening I wanted. I made a few measurements then determined I should have a 4 1/2″ radius for the circle – meaning I marked a 4 1/2″ spot all the way around the center of the square to get a 9″ opening. You could also use a plate or other round object – this just worked for me. I drew the opening lines using a ruler.  I then decided to use a 23″ radius for the outer portion of the tree skirt and made those marks. Then pin, pin, pinned the heck out of the thing.

After the pinning madness I stay-stitched a quarter inch around the center opening (or something like that), along the sides and around the bottom of the skirt.  I didn’t want the tree skirt to stretch while I was sewing on the binding. Next steps- sew on the bias binding, attach the yo-yo’s and stitch down the handprints.

ps- Worth noting is that the buttons in the center of the yo-yo’s were a variety of sizes and colors. Blue, purple, turquoise and black buttons gave the tree skirt a little zip! Enjoy!

Auction project – part 2

February 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

I am making a Christmas tree skirt for Little Mister’s class auction project.

I started by cutting out 8″ squares of white on white fabric and putting them in a 9″ square in a manilla folder – secured on the back side with masking tape so the fabric wouldn’t bunch or move. Each folder was labeled with the child’s name so I couldn’t mess it all up. Genius, right?

I let the kids choose which hand to use (i.e. right or left) and they could choose from four green paint colors. I’m pleased that we’ve used left and right hands and all four of the paints. Variety is nice.

Each hand print has been bordered with a complimentary green fabric. The hand prints will get appliqued around the border of the skirt, along with yo-yo’s and stars. Well, maybe some stars. Each yo-yo has a button in the middle. The buttons are shades of green, red, black, white, gold; there are a few purple, blue and pink buttons for variety and to break up the monotony.  I might make a few blue and purple yo-yo’s too. I have about 50 yo-yo’s made so far. If I am calculating correctly I need about 100. The auction is March 4th. I need to start whipping those things out!

I “found” some time this weekend and was able to cut out the skirt (it started as a giant block of nine fat quarters) and I put on a red and white stripe binding. I used red ric-rac for the ties and I’m considering putting bells on the ends just for fun.

Here’s what I have thus far

I took this photo on Monday. I have a little more than half the binding sewn on as of this afternoon.

I used ric-rac for ties and really LOVE the bias binding so I’m showing it off here.

You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling

September 19, 2010 § Leave a comment

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I love my neighborhood! It simply is the best. I replied to an article in our neighborhood newspaper, The Advocator, last month. This month, much to my surprise, it was published. Here’s what I wrote:

A Note From Your Editor

Last month I wrote about my concerns about the loss of a sense of neighborliness in Inman Park. I only got one response, from Patty Murphy, but what a response it was. Rather than start a different conversation, I’d like to continue this one! Her e-mail, titled “You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling,” follows. You may not agree totally with everything she has to say, but it all needs to be said!

“I’ve been in a quandary for several years about writing what I’m about to write. This is in NO WAY directed at you. I’m merely responding to your article in the Advocator about being neighborly. I feel that a follow up to your article is in order. Call it insight from a relative newbie.

“I’ve discussed what I’m about to say to you at length with several IPNA board members (past and present and all are well respected in the neighborhood) but I’ve never gotten up the nerve to actually do this. Until now. Until your article. Until I finally think that this is the time. And I’m not angry. We all know that things written when angry are very seldom productive.

“In my opinion, the feeling of a loss of the neighborhood is a direct result of the desire to make things less about the neighbor- hood and all about self.

“People just aren’t nice to one another. I moved into the neighborhood in June of 2002. Immediately I loved it! Everything was great. Fast forward a few years and I wanted to start to get in- volved. I went to the IPNA meetings and took it all in. I went relatively religiously for about a year. Then one meeting (October of 2008) I was so insulted by an “old timer” that I haven’t bothered to go back. It’s not worth it. In my opinion, the “old timers” think it’s alright to belittle newcomers. It’s not a new phenomenon. There’s a reason that many new Inman Park residents go to meetings only once. Why would anyone bother to go if they are just going to be made to feel bad? Not to mention the “well, that’s the way we’ve done it for 35 years so we shouldn’t change it” attitude. New ideas are often frowned upon. Not always, but frequently. I get that many things are the way they are for a very good reason. That’s all fine and dandy but I was barely alive 35years ago and there is no need to re-hash neighborhood goings on from a time when I was in diapers.

“I get that we live in an historic area. It’s one of the many things I love about Inman Park. The NPU, and UDC and all the other “garbage” you have to go through to get a permit, license, whatever are a giant pain but WELL WORTH IT for the neighbor- hood. That’s part of what keeps our neighborhood beautiful. That’s what keeps residential spaces, well, residential spaces and not commercial. It keeps us in check in many areas.

“Then you have events like the ‘garden.’ What a nightmare. Seriously! All that fuss over a neighborhood garden. Crazy! I get that some people look right out on that space but it’s not theirs. Period. It’s a public space. End of story. And it gets stopped because it can be. Not very neighborly. Then there are the garden people that, initially, didn’t seem open to moving the garden location. They weren’t very neighborly either.

“Further illustrating the ‘loss of neighborhood feeling’ is the drama that is currently unfolding at the corner of Edgewood, Euclid and Druid Circle. A bare lot was purchased by a family. They want to build a home. Then the “old timers” chime in about the lot is just fine. Let’s leave it the way it is. Well, if you like it that way, BUY THE LOT AND DO NOTHING WITH IT. And

then the City is gotten involved so there’s a tree hearing. Not very neighborly.

“Then everyone chooses sides. No one is thinking about the good of the NEIGHBORHOOD. They think only of themselves. At the end of the day would a garden really hurt anyone? No. The people in question just don’t want to look at a garden. They don’t want their view to change. Would a family building a house really hurt anyone? No. Those opposed don’t want to deal with construc- tion. I get that it’s a pain, but it’s a temporary pain that will most likely result in a beautiful new home in Inman Park that will help increase everyone’s property values.

“Going back to the “old timers” I often feel like anyone attending a meeting that doesn’t own a single family home isn’t welcomed at the meetings. How quickly it is forgotten that many of us own our townhouses and condos. One should note that I pay property taxes, too. Furthermore the tax base for my complex is about four times greater than that of the three or four houses that could occupy the space yet I feel like my contributions are menial. And I shouldn’t! No one should!”

It is time for the residents of Inman Park to get back “That Loving Feeling” and re-discover our sense of being neighbors. Let’s keep talking!

Death of a Refrigerator

August 13, 2010 § Leave a comment

The power went out and when it came back on my refrigerator died. It had gone to appliance heaven.

It was sad and ugly. And terribly inconvenient.

Husband thought the clicking was from my coffee maker (duh). After two hours I was finally able to get him to realize that the fridge was making that horrid sound.

Having already fixed the darn thing twice in eight years we decided to buy a new one. I couldn’t bear the thought of repairing the darn thing again.

While we waited for our new refrigerator, our old fridge sprung a small leak

We lost some food and lived out of coolers

Thomas kept the bread company

And the light at the end of the tunnel….

I found the pastry brush that had been missing since March.

Oh, and I got a fancy new appliance.  I don’t think I have ever been so excited about a refrigerator.

Ever.

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