Monday, July 26, 2010

Winter happy, winter sad

Not that life is this black and white but today it seems to fall into two camps:

-is winter salad from the farmers market and homemade leek, potato and feta tarte
- Listening to Edith Piaf and the Arctic Monkeys (not together!)
- is finding vintage belt buckles (the staff discount is a bonus)
-Hospice’s Craft Out West event and the gorgeousness i dragged home with me
- Stephanie Dowrick’s tome: Choosing Happiness. Lent to me by a friend and it is perfectly what i need at the moment.
- adventures in the rain and sea spray
- is an overflowing fabric stash
- is dancing wild in the living room (Arctic Monkeys)
and plotting birthday celebrations

-is someone close to us losing their already much loved son and brother at 19 weeks ...just an awful awful thing to happen. (most else seems to pale into insignificance to this one)
-a recurrent domestic violence situation a few doors down
- doing much work on holding my centre/ staying grounded to not letting someone else’s chronic negativity and issues bring me down. Less than gracefully today.
- NZ governments plans to oil drill, grrr.

So much beauty in the world, so much. In each moment. I say to myself, ‘this too shall pass’.
I remember to stop and breathe deeply. Remember my gratitude for even the smallest of things. Sometimes it is the small things that make a day, a world anew.

Monday, July 19, 2010

baby crafting

I made my first quilt (Look Deb!) from super soft vintage sheets for my friend Sheena's baby. We have been through a bit together, i lived with her when brewing this one (currently driving a rubbish truck aka upturned rocking chair next to me) and wanted to make something special for her and her beloveds. I have been wanting to make a quilt for years. It was a bit daunting, i had no idea what i was doing but made it up as i went along. (Those of who know my inability to do what i am told/follow recipes will be rolling your eyes to hear that i am sure!)
I was inspired by joining Deb from Works In Progress' Vintage sheet Freedom Bee. How lovely it is to be sharing this quilt learning journey with all those lovely ladies 'round the world. Really looking forward to making the next one.

This is what i dreamed up to welcome the beautiful Sarah's baby.

The work in progress...

...and Jed heaven with two more works in progress. He wangled an invitation to the double babyshower. 'TWO bellies mama, so beautiful, I LOVE those babies'.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

big tree

I can't remember the last time i climbed a big tree.
I had forgotten how good it felt.
Welcoming me to the magical world of tree.

I love this photo. Not because it is aesthetically pleasing but because it brings back that moment for me. We were headed to the playground with friends on a trip into town. But who needs a playground when you have a magical wonderland of a huge tree with caves and windows, with fires to be built/sticks to be gathered and whole worlds to be found within? And an Ava Bean to marvel with?

Let this be a lesson to me: when i blog about getting enough sleep the following night is a shocker. How can he look so chipper and me so puffy eyed?! The difference is the previous seven nights i actually got enough sleep (i am doing it again...) so though i was tempted to cancel the days plan to adventure into town, we pulled it off. I am glad we did. This day shall also go down in history as the day i told Jed the story of Robin Hood. He he.
That shirt (the one that used to be a curtain back in the fifties?), i made it ten days ago, worn perhaps 5 times. Loving it. Stains and all.

Thank you my lovely one, for reminding me how important it is to climb trees.

Monday, July 12, 2010

things are changing

Newest acquisitions to the fabric stash.
Touches of spring fever colours...

and vintage delight.

With each new addition comes new ideas and inspiration and wonderings of whose fabric stash this was liberated from and what their story was.

I realised at 6am this morning, that i wasn't desperate for more sleep. Strange. I counted back. Seven hours. Only one interruption. Yup! And it's been happening for a wee while. We had our busiest week ever and today i felt full of beans and ready for more. Instead of whimpering on the floor and cancelling every plan in sight. Sleep. So important. Okay, market stall here i come and i plan to resurrect the GrowMama etsy store, which has been languishing. Sheesh, if the little guy keeps this up, anything is possible.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

steamroller love

Crazy about building machines, but equally into bellies, babies and birth this small one. But the belly love is another story/blogpost.
J can spot a digger, tractor, steamroller, crane or concrete mixer from miles away. This one was right on our flightpath down by the beach.
Nothing like hands on experience of the real thing.

That night Jed had a flannel fabric with building machines on it that his godmother had given him. He was learning to use scissors, we ended up cutting machines out. I pulled out his felt board and we created a work scene. We made loads for each digger to carry, a big pile of earth, then, after a conversation about the potential destructive nature of the like of diggers and bulldozers, we added trees and later animals. Flannel, or fabric with a rougher texture or furry texture worked best.

I think these would be great on a long journey. Right now, it's buying me a little time at the craft table.
I just did a search for felt board tutorials and came up with this basic one and this more fancy easel one for a classroom.
I'll be coming up with other feltboard themes in the future. I like the idea of cutting out a bunch of shapes and using them to do art with.

Monday, July 5, 2010

One rainy weekend afternoon...

...i went a little crazy diving into my fabric scrap bin.

Jed was sticking to his refusal to wear anything but the softest comfiest clothes. No jeans. No store bought cords. Any attempts at negotiation on my part elicited sqwawking and 'No Mama, you need to respect my boundaries here'. Fair enough. But what to do? Bit cold for nude dudes here at the moment.

The solution was two fold.
First, i reckon clothes and food are two common areas where kids exert control, especially at this age. Food we have no problem with and clothes? Well, really i think soft and comfy is just fine. Mostly how i dress anyhow. I let go, in other words. Put to rest all those beautiful thrifted goodies and said he was in control, of course. How not. It is his body and he knows what feels best.
Second, Happily, Mama-made trousers made the cut and are worn almost exclusively.
So, i asked Jed to choose his fabrics and craftily trying to get him to form a bond with his trousers, i made another pair of lounge pants and appliqued them with a rocket. The widelegged soft vintage corduroy ones i added pockets and a tree, 'in autumn with its leaves starting to fall' as requested.

Success! Super soft, comfy and alot of fun, both in the making and the wearing.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

winter aint bad

Beachside wanders in the winter sun.

(A break from all that rain...wahoo!)

Winter fruit fresh off the trees.

A little rocking out. There's a bit of that around here.
(I just love witnessing that move from making music daily with a baby/toddler to watching him get his own impromptu groove on and make up his own songs, i just get all warm inside thinking about it)

Jed and his best friends. All three over tired and at the end of a long day but managing to be together in a beautiful way.

Still managing to get a little sewing in. Inspired by the SewMamaSew Make it Wear it challenge month (link to all the tutorials here). I had to try the short sleeve top version of the Built by Wendy Simplicity 3835 pattern. This is a vintage fabric i had my eye on for awhile at Lets Go Retro. It is light, floaty and feels like silk although i suspect it's rayon. Unfortunately, once i had this in the light of day i saw that its former life as a curtain had taken its toll and theres a few marks on the front. No matter, i still love it, just means i can wear it with children afoot and not be tempted to save it for best. A little springtime to get me through winter.