Saturday, September 8, 2007

Oh baby me

So now I have my new laptop and printer (with built in scanner) and I am trying it out. On my trip to Seattle, I saw my mom who has been going through all the old pictures. She found this one of me --three days old --in an outfit that she had made for me. So not only do you see that I come by my creativity honestly, but I am one cute and well dressed baby!

I think I will post this because Blogger is acting funny.

PS. Chuck E. Cheese is possibly the most horrible place to be on a Saturday at noon--we had a birthday party to go to--and my poor boy had never been and had no idea what to expect. He came away pretty pleased with his bat ring prize and high praise for the pizza (!!!). (He gets excellent, homemade pizza every week at home......sigh.)

Monday, September 3, 2007

Alas, such a quiet neglected page

I like to do the FoodBlog Blog Hop sometimes, and I often happen upon blogs whose last entry was sometime in 2006 and usually is an apology for not blogging and a promise to be better about it. So I won't promise anything but I am writing again.

I am trying a new product in my etsy shop -- hand dyed lace. I did some on a whim and liked how it turned out. I had bought a large tangled roll of rayon lace in a grab bag of notions at the thrift store--probably 50 or 75 yards. I, of course, have no use for this much lace but I did want whatever else was in the bag. So then I dyed some and think it would be great in a number of sewing and non-sewing projects.

I have many lovely thrifted items to show you for next time--aaack, I just made mention of a next post!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


At last, my time to escape the heat has come! We are going up to Seattle by way of Utah and coming home by way of California. So I will not be posting for a couple of weeks.
But, here is my contibution for the hand done fabric swap over at Bitter Betty's. I was not sure about the fabric but then I did the lace and now I am happy.
So, tra la for now.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Get a load of this fabric!

I just put this up on Etsy--hilarious fabric. I think it is funny which people take it to mean 'broke' and which ones take it to mean 'need a push up bra'.

Sneak peek or sneek peak

I really like how my silkscreening for Bitter Betty is turning out but as I look at it I realize that the difficulty is going to be "What to do with it?". I really needed to do a lovely allover print that would lend itself to totes and dresses and "whatever your little heart desires" but instead I do a beautiful but awkwardly large design that doesn't lend itself to anything but a frame. Well, I have faith that imaginations other than my own will see myriad possibilities and get right to work bringing them to fruition.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Doll Quilt Swap Bonanza

Hey lookit everybody! I got my quilt from swap mama Wendy a few days ago (bad, bad me for not posting sooner). It really is quite lovely--I love the colors and bumpy texture.
Thank you Wendy!!
Mine is done and going into the mail today, yay!

Friday, July 6, 2007

All the doll quilt frenzy makes me want to share a project I did last year with my church. We built, painted and decorated 75 doll beds. Then we made a mattress, mattress cover, pillow, pillow case, two double sided top sheets and a quilt for each one. We also put a doll in each bed. They went to an organization that supplies toys to kids in family foster care. It was a huge project and I just about burned out on it (lots of people helped but I did about half the work), but the pictures are so great.I was reading over at Angry Chicken about the beds and sheets to go with the doll quilts in the great DQSII. Very cute.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Doll Quilt Redux

So, the quilt seems to be going over well but I still wasn't quite satisfied. I did some fancy machine quilting and turned it on its side and I like it much better!
I know that is cheesy but the middle needed something and I like to do the freehand writing.
The funny thing is, I am not even really a quilter and almost never will start something from scratch. But give me a couple of squares and I cannot keep myself from putting it together. In this case I had a stack of scraps and four squares of the four stripe gingham. Someone had donated this pile to a big charity project I was working on. So now it is a cute baby quilt with a flannel backing.

This is in the center square.

I love the challenge of taking something that I would never have started with and making it into something that I actually like--or at least someone would like. This will go to a local charitable organization.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

I am a neglectful mother

Here is my daughter's hair. What you see there is one gigantic dredlock. She is on swim team and apparently has not been combing, brushing, or even running her fingers through her hair. (But she has been washing.) I have noticed that the bun she has been wearing for the past couple of months has been looking a little raggedy but I really had no idea it was this bad. It took two whole hours for the hairdresser at Fantastic Sam's to comb it out. I was gonna have them just cut it off but the nice hair lady wouldn't do it. And she only charged me $19.99 for it (haircut too)(I gave her a $10 tip, because well, two hours!!? (I felt like such a cheapskate at that)).

Sorry, no after photo (she is off swimming again).

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The elusive title

So I got all ambitious and joined the doll quilt swap and then completely dropped the ball on blogging. I finally got google reader going for my blogroll and that made it so easy to keep up but less easy to stay involved. My class is over on Friday--can't come soon enough--and swimteam is almost over. Hopefully then I can get back to some mental order.

Anyways, here is the doll quilt I put together. I am not sure if it is good. The middle square is actually a vintage square that I found in a random bag at the thrift store. My swap partner asked for quilter's choice so I just started sewing. So I ask you my loyal readership if you would enjoy getting this quilt in the mail? I have a couple of other ideas so I could do another but I don't really feel the vibe right now. But I will re-do if this one is not up to snuff. (you see I am not really vibing on this one either but maybe it is good?)It is machine quilted but I did hand finish the bias tape and label -- which for me is sayin' somethin'.
Ok, new topic. I found some calico iron on letters. The white is the back of them and you can see what color the calico is from the rest of the square. This is all there are so I need to figure out a series of words that use up all of the letters. I am a waste not, want not kind of a person and having a few orphan letters is just going to kill me. So if any of you are word puzzle kind of people, help me out here!

And now I leave you with a convocation of bad guys waiting for their comeuppance.

Friday, June 15, 2007

I am not a philisophical person.

It has been a while since I have posted or crafted. I did make a baby blanket last week for a shower but I had to rush out the door clipping threads to get to the shower late--so no picture.

I rearranged a little in my studio and got it all cleaned up but I have been snowed in with this class. My first graduate course and let me tell you I am not impressed! It is an internet course--which should have been my first clue--how do you do an ethics class online? Well in this case you do it by requiring the class to meet in groups and do all the work in groups (group paper anyone?). Mix this together with a five week course. At first I was sick with worry, 'it will be so hard' I thought, 'my first graduate course I won't be able to keep up' I said. Ha! So I have to read the whole textbook but I don't actually have to prove that I did (I am reading!) All of the assignments (two papers and some discussion questions) are group assignments. We do have to participate in a one hour chat session with the instructor, which I did. One hour of blather and sentence fragments--I couldn't even think of anything to say because the topic was so inane and self explantory. Ay yi yi! What have I done???! I just cannot believe I have paid almost a thousand dollars for this.

So I am signed up for the fall.

I am taking this course because I need a career or a skillset. My art degree is not cutting it. I don't really want to work a 9 to 5 job. I stay home with my kids now which has been a blessing but my giant brain needs some stimulation--hard problems, ethical dilemmas, other people interaction. I have a really hard time making friends and so many people seem to have no time to do anything anymore but attend to their jobs and kid's schedules. Busy, busy. I guess I am busy too but so often it is not a good kind of busy--it is a 'driving across town again in the cauldron we call home' kind of busy. It's a 'I have to clean the guinea pig's hay off the floor again' kind of busy.

So now this is turning into a whiny kind of post and I did not mean for it to be--looking inside myself right now I feel pretty good. Or at least not unhappy. Sigh. All of my life I have felt that there must be something more exciting than this. Of course, there is, but not without giving up some other things that I have come to rely upon.

Clearly I need to see a therapist.

Anyways, my plan is to put together a few things this weekend to put in my shop (something not baby or bag related). I am still ironing out the details but it is something that I have wanted to do for a long time, so time's up people!

Monday, June 4, 2007

Studio improvements

As you may know, I live in Arizona, the land of the blazing sun. The house we bought is fairly large and on half an acre. However, the previous owners were very averse to yardwork and apparently anything green. So our yard is a half an acre of gravel (even though the house is 30 years old). We are slowly putting in trees and I am jealously guarding any wild ones that spring up (which means the previous owners were assiduously ripping them out because we have several). In our backyard I have my studio--400 square feet of space with air conditioning but no water. There is a concrete patio but it is in the full afternoon sun so we were not getting much use out of it and the studio itself was very hot in the summers.

Enter my father-in-law and a pile of wood. Here you can see the beginnings of work (and my view)

The end of the second days work.

The framework is done and Mr. Plum is priming (I was helping too!)

The roof is going on, there you see Father-in-law Plum. Isn't the roof lovely?

The kids are already enjoying the shade.

I have to touch up the paint in a few places and put up some fun lights and soda can flowers (and wait for the camera batteries to charge) then I will put up a finished picture. And then I need to have a party!
That's 200 more square feet of shade in the yard folks!

Thursday, May 24, 2007


I have only been reading other peoples blogs for a few months and only three days ago discovered Google Reader. My blog list is very long and I was starting to get discouraged that I would be able to keep up with them all. I only started this blog a couple of months ago and have been reading how other people get tagged and tell their weird stuff. Well now I have been tagged by Beth over at ModernJax. So here are my:

Seven strange things:
1. I was voted ~Most Talented~ my senior year in high school and back then I felt it was totally justified. This year is my 20 year reunion and I am feeling less confident that I have lived up to their expectations. Then I think "heck yeah, I'm talented".....I'm just not famous yet.

2. I do not like to taste food as I am cooking (with the exception of cookie dough and frosting). The result is usually woefully under salted/seasoned. I also will not eat a dish that I made if I had to handle the meat too much. Like if I had to chop up a whole chicken then I make the whole dish and serve it, and then I have cereal for dinner.

3. I do not like raw tomatoes except in fresh salsa, but they can't be mushy. Once, when I was thirteen, I was invited over to my elderly sunday school teacher's house for brunch. Just me. She served lots of peeled tomatoes with thousand island dressing and crab salad on bread which was then toasted with cheese on top. I ate more thousand island dressing on those tomatoes than I have eaten in my whole life since. Those crab toasts were not so hot either.

4. If I could only have one type of food for the rest of my life--it would be Thai. mmmmmm.

5. I tend not to be creative, or want to be, unless I am very busy--I need interaction in order to create.

6. My favorite series of books in the whole world are the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy books. I am always stunned to meet people who haven't read them or don't appreciate them. Then I discovered that many people think that they are an adolescent male thing. Sigh. I doubt an adolescent male really understands what he is reading. If you doubt the brilliance of Douglas Adams, check out Last Chance to See. That is his masterwork and is not even science fiction. (Ok, so I have no idea why this is so giant, sorry)

7. I have hearing aides but I hate to wear them so you'll just have to speak up.

Now I have to tag 7 other people. That is gonna be tough because I cannot think of anyone that hasn't been tagged. I guess I will post this and do some research and get back to you. I have more to say but it will have to wait.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Swap-bot strikes again

Ok, so I hope this fulfills my obligation for Cheryl. I will elaborate more later but blogger is eating my words.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Be still my heart.

I picked up this shirt for my little one at the thrift store ($1), and I cannot get enough of it!! It looks to be in never washed condition and the greatest thing is, he has worn it for three days straight!
The flowers are silk screened on and have that plasticky feel, but the fabric is a nice weight to carry it off.
The shirt was made in Brazil and has this great tag--I don't know if it is Brazilian or made for the American market. (just checked--it's Brasilian!)

On a side note, I took the entrance exam for math and passed!! I don't have to take any extra classes to get into the statistics class--YAY!!!!!! (way too many exclamation points--sorry).

So now I will take one elective for grad school this summer, probably Ethics for Social Workers, (seems like that should be mandatory (?!))

Alas, now I have to clean house so that a number of people can come over and have dinner tomorrow night. I am making the Cook's Country version of simplified Pasta Primavera. I would give you the link, but apparently you have to buy the magazine.

Saturday, May 12, 2007


Look at all the lovely things I got from Laura . This was the pink and brown swap and she went the mini spa way--very lovely. There was also chocolate but that disappeared fairly quickly!

Here is the first of several zipper bags for my shop. Through the years of thrifting I have accumulated many, many zippers. Especially metal zippers. I have used a few in clothing but I have a rather large selection of nylon zippers too. Here is my solution. Check the shop for more pics.

And now onto my recent thrift acquisitions!!
A nice bit of upholstery fabric that was in a bag with other stuff.

A gorgeous big piece in yellow and orange--I have a bit of this in blue and green too!

This fantastic plaid is wool. Need I say more?

I just can't get enough of orange and green and gingham checks!

Ahhh, lovely. Now I need to sew, sew like the wind!!

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Swaps, grad school, whatever

Here is a not too great picture of the things I received from the Crafty Daisies summer swap. Alice sent this great pile of stuff--shells, buttons, balloons, books and more. The felted purse and the rainbow box are especially lovely. Thank you Alice !

So, I have made the decision to go to grad school.

My biggest stumbling block is a stupid statistics class I have to finish before January. Now, I went all the way up to calculus in high school, but that has been 20 years. How hard can it be?, I ask myself. Well, let me tell you, if you do not use double variable equations, exponents and who knows what all else, on a regular basis--let's just say, they are nowhere to be found in my brain.

It looks like I have to take bonehead algebra at the community college just to be able to take the statistics class. Sigh. Quite a blow to my pride.

Topic change..........Swap-bot...........

has anyone tried this? I signed up for a couple and am now regretting it. I sent one off and have another one to do. Bleahgh I don't know why I do this, I get all enthused about swapping and then go and overobligate myself. I shall now limit myself to swaps that I happen to find by accident on the blogs that I read--at least then I have something in common with a potential partner. Plus they won't be happening so often. The rules over on swap-bot are kind of a joy kill anyways.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

I got in !!

I got accepted to the Masters of Social Work program at ASU.

I have 6 days to decide if I am going to take the position.

My youngest will still be in preschool next year and my others will be in two different schools that are a bit of a drive from home. Is next year mine or theirs?

I did get accepted to the part time program so it isn't a brutal program, but it is three years and about $15,000. When I am done I will have to work at least part time to pay it all back. My dear Mr. Plum (good name for him?) pays my student loans now.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

A full blown rose

My husband transplanted the rose bushes a few weeks ago andwe have one large and lovely bloom. Something or someone has been pruning the other bushes in the dead of the night so they have yet to produce, but they are trying!
I have had a sale in my shop!!! My dreams of fame and fortune are coming to fruition!!!!
Ah well, not likely, but I have some items for an update and I am desperately trying to find time to get some more sewing done. One more week of school for me and then some real chunks of time to work.

A blanket for that baby with a flair for the dramatic--check the shop tomorrow for more shots.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Heads up

Rete is giving away a skein of yarn to a commenter this week. "One random winner will receive a skein of Louet Gems in their favorite color." I don't knit but, my husband does and I am plotting how he will make me some lovely socks if I win. Skip on over and sign up.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Etsy shop is open!!

So there it is --------------------------------------------------------------------->

The shop is open and I am waiting to see who gets the first item......

Well, where is everybody?

I kid, I kid.

It seemed to take forever to get it all up and, because I had hit my deadline, I posted unimproved pictures. If you read the descriptions of each item you will see that I got better with each posting. All in all not a bad experience.

I have been dithering about doing something like this for a long time (joined Etsy in 2005(!)). But the counselor at the school my daughter will attend next year talked to us parents about how procrastination is just a way to avoid failing, so I decided to just bite the bullet and jump in.
(Just to mix a few metaphors--ack!!)
Please, everyone who reads this, tell your friends (whom you think might have an interest) to check it out--self promotion is my achilles heel.

I am also interested to know what kinds of things you all buy on Etsy and what you might like to see--looking for more ideas of what to make. I want to stick to the realm of sewing, and thrifted, one of a kind fabrics and trims. Ideas?

Friday, April 20, 2007

Anybody wanna trade?

Ok, so, I have these two lovely batches of wool yarn that I thrifted ages ago. I do not knit or crochet. I think I bought them because I have a loom but since I don't weave either.....

This yellowish, yucky color looks pretty accurate on my computer screen, it is indeed that awful 70's color that is never gonna come back. However, it is wool and could be dyed--a brown could work quite nicely over this. Or, perhaps you just love this color and know just the thing.

Now, since there are only about 4 or 5 of you who read my blog I am hoping you will pass this on to somebody who might be interested in a trade. I would take anything except more yarn: scrap of fabric, a few buttons, a nice bit of paper, spool of thread, beads, pretty much anything. The yellow is 4 skeins, 4 ply, 3 1/2 oz each.

Now this Britania wool is a better color--the small picture is more accurate on my screen. There are 6 skeins, 2 ply, 1 6/10 oz each.
Same deal, trade me anything in the realm of craft of art supplies, nothing highly valuable--just roughly equivalent to a few skeins of a dicey color and probably not enough, yarn.
I was thinking that they would felt nicely.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Jello and greeting cards

Ha! Regina sent me a photo of my cards I sent in the swap. Thank you Regina! Quivering , dietetic jellos are my fave.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Greeting card swap

Here, finally, is the note card swap I did with Regina . I sent in 5 cards, which I failed to document. And I got these 6 lovelies back. Now I need to send them to people. Anybody want some mail?

Several of them have been made with handmade stamps, and that pink one has magnetic pants on it. That would make a good band name -- Magnetic Pants -- No?

This one with yellow flower was done by Regina. They are all so pretty, mine had pictures cut from 60's cookbooks on them. A totally different feel.

Today I get to go to my Paperworks meeting. Such a great group. I think this month we are hearing about the In Over My Head groups. They are people who get together and expand their knowledge in different areas. I am going to join one in the fall. We have heard great lectures from several fabulous artists from all over. Very inspiring. They are mostly women, mostly over 50 and many, many proffesional artists. I feel very young and inexperienced among them but I don't care.
There is also a very large percentage of people who wear that virulent chartreusy, yellow green. I have decided that that color is in the domain of artists, older women, intelligencia, and occasionally thin rich blonde women who wear lots of jewelry. I have a shirt in that color and really like it.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Button Swap Bonanza

Hooray for Sonya!! Wow, what a lovely selection of buttons--I think she must have a much nicer collection than I do because these are the ones she is willing to give away! Here is the line up--I took this shot outside in some crazy rainy weather, so they don't shine quite as much as in person.Here is a subset on some nice polka dotted rayon she included.

More goodies plus a whole 'nother dozen buttons!!

Trims, bracelet, is all too much.

Another vingette, there is that cohesiveness that I struggle to attain in my groupings of things.
Thankyou Sonya! Such a fun swap.