Wednesday, August 31, 2011

And Then There Was One

Patch started Kindergarten today. To say he's excited I fear is an understatement. I couldn't get him to stand still for a picture. He kept wanting to do "Yay!" poses.

Curly works about 7 minutes from home, so he came back for the epic first walk to Kindergarten.
And then Patch ran up the stairs with Mini-me and didn't even look back. The teacher at the door said, "Well, there you go!" My thoughts exactly. He is going to love Kindergarten.
So all I have left at home is Ginger. She makes a surprising amount of noise for a 20 month old. And did you know she could say, "No thanks!" As in: Ginger, let's change your diaper. No thanks! Or: Ginger, it's time for your nap. No thanks!

Mommy won the nap argument, and now it is time to throw in a load of laundry and sew a little. It's so quiet, I may start talking to myself again.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

First Day of School

 Well, for Mini-me, anyway. Patch has to wait until Wednesday, and he is not too happy about it. But Mini-me? She was thrilled. She had on a cute new dress with leggings, new shoes that lit up, a new backpack, a new lunch bag, and a new teacher.
Look at how huge the backpack is. It's bigger than her. But, there's room for all her stuff and room to grow.

I actually went in the school this year and took a picture at her desk. She endured it, but really wanted me gone thankyouverymuch.
This morning was a little rougher to get her out the door. The second day is never nearly as fun, especially when you find out that daddy is taking your brother to Kings Dominion for the day. That makes you move a little slower.

On another note, your response to the giveaway has been overwhelming. You like me, you really like me!{said while delicately dabbing tears of joy from the corners of my big brown eyes} I never thought I would have so many followers, so thanks and hopefully you won't be disappointed. If you're looking for the giveaway, go here. 

Speaking of giveaways, Amanda is giving away some of her brand new fabric on her facebook page. It's not even in stores yet, people. I know I can't wait to get my hands on some! All you have to do is "like" her page. So easy! Good luck!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday Giveaway

Because it's Friday.
Because it's the last Friday before school starts.
Because fabric is fun.
Because my friend owns a fabric shop.

I am so pleased, nay, thrilled to be doing this giveaway today, sponsored by The Intrepid Thread. Julie is a member of The Quilted Fish Design Team. Tired of not finding what she liked in her local shops, she decided to open an online business. I am so glad she did! She has a great selection of modern fabrics, and her prices are to die for. Plus, she often has discount codes on her blog or in her newsletter. All of that, and she sponsors a weekly giveaway. {sigh} I love Julie.

Up for grabs today is a fat quarter bundle of Promenade in blue:
So pretty, right? Think of all the fun you could have with this! You have three ways to enter:

  1. Follow my blog, either through the follower or on a reader of some sort. You won't regret it. I'm funny and pretty. Leave a comment telling me you follow, and also telling me where you're from.
  2. Follow Julie's blog. Leave a comment telling me.
  3. Blog, facebook, or twitter this giveaway. Leave a comment telling me.
So there you go! Good luck to you. The winner will be announced next Friday, September 2. In the meantime, go check out The Intrepid Thread on etsy. You can also visit her website and see what she has coming soon. Such great stuff!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Little Thought About School

Ginger was wearing just a onesie one morning (we're all about comfort here), and felt it needed a little something. So, she brought Curly his black belt and demanded it be "ON!" She felt so pretty.
Getting ready to ride horses in NC.

Several times in the past weeks, I have been referred to as one of "those" moms. It's meant to be an insult, as in, "Oh, you're one of those moms who looks forward to school starting." It's usually followed up with, "I just get so sad. I hate those hours where my kids are in school."
So, am I one of "those" moms? Guilty. I get so excited for the school year. I admit, I look forward to having some of my own time. But let's be honest: it's not like I'll have a lot of alone time. Ginger will still be around. I'll have some alone time when she naps, but she doesn't nap for very long. I get 2 hours if I'm lucky, but most days she naps for a little over an hour.

I mostly get excited about the school year because my kids are excited about it. They make new friends every year. They learn something new and exciting every day. I love seeing them grow and change. I love that when they go to school, the world opens up for them a little bit more.

I have also observed that my children take a cue from me on how they should act. If I am nervous, anxious, and unhappy about something, then that's how they'll be. Conversely, if I'm excited, expectant, and happy about something, then that's how they'll be. Case in point: when Mini-me first went to the dentist, I talked about how awesome the dentist is and how yummy the toothpaste tastes. She now loves going to the dentist.

I'm so excited for Monday. There's a lot of learnin' to be done.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Is This Real Life?

It's our last week of summer vacation. Next Monday morning, I will raise my hands on the steps of the elementary school in a Rocky-esque celebration. But for this week, we're just trying to have the best last week of summer possible. Today the weather was beautiful. At about 3:00, the thermometer in my car declared a delightful 80* day. It's unheard of. In lieu of the pool, we visited two parks. Tomorrow it should be a little warmer, and a better day to bathe al fresco.

Also on tap this week is the last wedding quilt of the summer. Our good friend Eric is tying the knot and we are thrilled for him. We really like his fiance, who is now our friend, too, and she has the sweetest little girl. In this house we have a real soft spot for anyone who takes on an instant family. It ain't easy, ya know. When we had dinner with them last month, I noticed their new furniture coordinates really well with a stack of fat quarters I bought in Pittsburgh. It was meant to be. I'm using yet another pattern, my third, from Camille's book. I guess you can say that I really like this book. I have fabric ready to go for two other quilt. I love the book so much, I think I should marry it.

I also love palm trees. When I was little, I thought all palm trees had coconuts in them. Imagine my shock at age 18 when I finally saw some in real life and learned that I was wrong. It was such a hard lesson to learn and I have tried ever since then to never be wrong again.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Good Things About Southern California

Last weekend we went to San Diego under the pretense of attending a wedding. In reality, we went for two things: spending time with my college roommie and going to the beach.

First, we stayed with the lovely Rachel and her family. We hadn't seen each other in about 12 years. "How is it possible we both still look like Freshman!" we cried. Curly got an eye-opening account of what his sweet, delicate wife was like in college. Apparently the impression I gave him that I just "studied all the time" was not entirely accurate. However, I still maintain my innocence in the Great Mooning of 1998.
The second reason we spent 2 days travelling for 2 days in San Diego was the beach. After the wedding, we had about 45 minutes before the reception started. So Curly and I hopped in our green Kia Soul and went to La Jolla cove. It was overcast, but oh so fun. In case you're wondering, only Curly went in.
On Monday morning, we gave ourselves ample time to get to the airport. Nearly 4 hours. We did this because our drive from LA to San Diego was 4 hours on the previous Friday. So when it only took us two hours to get to LA, what did we do with ourselves? We went to the beach. This time it was sunny and we were with Curly's siblings. The picture is of Curly and Ryan bodysurfing.
Ah, I love the beach and the beach loves me. I pretty much decided that we're moving to California. The beaches are awesome and the tacos are delicious. However, there is the pesky problem of not having a job or a place to live or a real reason to move other than I love the beach. And tacos. Oh, and Rachel.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Wedding Quilt #2

Curly and I returned late last night from our trip to San Diego for Lieutenant Boo's wedding. It was a great weekend and went by way too fast. I have pictures to post and discuss later, but first I thought I would share what I made for them:
Lieutenant Boo requested a quilt, as he was the only family member without one. He and Aunt Nora like red, blue, and green, so I thought this fabric was just perfect. For those who like to know, it's Just Wing It by Momo.
For the pattern, I used Square One, found in Simplify, by Camille Roskelley. The pattern calls for a charm pack and a honey bun, but since honey buns are in short supply, I used a layer cake.
I hope it gets a lot of use. Quilts get sad sitting on a shelf.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A Little Sew and Tell

I can't believe I haven't shown this little quilt yet. A few months ago, I did the Above All Fabric quilt-a-long for this cute, and super easy, picnic quilt.
I used DS Quilt fabric from Joann's. It is really pretty in person and feels nice. I mean, it should feel nice because it is way more expensive than the other offerings at Joann's. Thank goodness for coupons. Am I right, ladies?
I love the blue floral print the most. It just reminds me of summer in the South for some reason.
I had to piece the back, so I added a stripe of the dots bordered in the green check for a little interest.
We used it on the 4th of July, and Curly used it when he took Mini-me on a date to Wolf Trap. It's the perfect size for just a couple of people to sit and eat al fresco.
I'm having a bit of a celebration letdown today. I mean, it's not a birthday or an anniversary. There were no presents or cards or packages. What a lame Wednesday! Luckily we have a wedding this weekend. I have been looking forward to the cake all week, only to be informed that there wouldn't be any. Oh well. San Diego has cupcake shops, right?

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

My Wish List

It's my birthday today. I feel old. Before Patch's birthday, he and I were having as sweet little moment snuggling in bed. I reached out and touched his little cheek and said, "Oh, bud, I can't believe you're going to be 5!" He smiled, put his hand on my face and said, "And I can't believe you'll be 34." That makes two of us.

If I were to blow out candles on a cake this year, this is what I would wish for:

  • That I reach my goal weight at 34. There is nothing worse than being 35 and overweight.
  • That I can learn to be organized.
  • That I finish all my quilt UFOs. Thanks to the floods of '11, I only have 3.
  • That my kids continue to grow and learn. Well, except Ginger. She can stay this size.
  • That I can care less what people say about me, and care more what I say about them.
  • That I feel as content with my life a year from now as I do today.
I have big plans today. I have a quilt to finish binding and some shows that need watching. Curly has to work, which is no fun for anyone, so my dinner plans are to be the cool mom and get Happy Meals for the kids and Chipotle for me. I didn't bake a cake. We had some last week and Lieutenant Boo is getting married on Saturday, so more cake there. Remember wish one? It doesn't happen if you eat cake every day. Not that I would turn down a cupcake if someone brought one. You know, if someone were to feel so inclined.



Monday, August 08, 2011

Happy Birthday!

Hands off, ladies! He's all mine. Happy Birthday to my Curly. It's his last year in his 30s. He's a great dad and a terrific husband. I love him so hard. He may not like this years photo, but you should see the one from 2009. Or the one from 2008.

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Saturday, August 06, 2011

My Curly

He's so handsome.
And my sunglasses rock.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Celebrity Chef

Last night I had dinner with a celebrity chef. Well, he was there and I was eating dinner. And, well, he was there because it was his restaurant. Frederick was put on the map 2 years ago when Bryan Voltaggio and his brother appeared on Top Chef. And by appeared, I mean dominated the show. In the end, Bryan came in second to his brother. It was amazing television.

Bryan opened his restaurant Volt 3 years ago. I have been wanting to eat there for 3 years. It's fancy. And by "fancy," I mean my first dish was frozen gazpacho with heirloom tomatoes and baby basil. So fancy. And it was delicious. The flavors were sophisticated, but not inaccessible. Volt has tables in the kitchen, where you eat a tasting menu of little dishes. It was two hours of bliss. Not only that, but it was a good show. It's fun to watch a restaurant behind the scenes. Bryan was nice enough to chat with us after dinner and wish us a happy anniversary.

So to say Curly outdid himself this year is an understatement. He won't ever be able to take me to Outback Steakhouse again. It was an evening I won't soon forget.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Weight Loss Wednesday

Oh yes, my friends. This weekly feature is back! I feel like I took the month of July off. My waistline felt it, too. But now I'm back. This past week I have lost my vacation weight (a little over 2 pounds) and I am back on track. August is our celebration month at our house. We started with Patch's birthday yesterday, today is our anniversary, next Monday is Curly's birthday, and next Tuesday is my birthday. Then we go back to school, which is always a celebration! I have a new rule for myself this month, and I'm sticking to it through October. It's that I will not eat things that are made from a box. This is not difficult when it comes to a main meal. For example, I don't like mac-n-cheese from a box. Treats are another thing, though. Brownies from a box are pretty darn good. But brownies from scratch are better. So I'm going to save my treat allowances for the really good stuff.

Curly has a special anniversary surprise planned for tonight. I'll tell you about it tomorrow. I know what it is (he fessed up when I was trying to nail down a time with the sitter) and I'll share tomorrow. He's a special guy, that Curly.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

The Big 5

Can you believe it? He's 5. It's an important age. In just a few weeks, Patch is off to Kindergarten. He will leave me at 8 and not see me again until 2:50. He will eat his lunch without his mommy. I don't know how I will survive it.
Patch has a hollow leg. I know this because he is always hungry. Either that, or he's hungry because he's always in motion. He has some great observations about life, so I'm not so sure that he's just a jock. I think there might be a nerd waiting to burst forward.
Patch loves to dress up. He insists on wearing a tie to church. He really doesn't like it that I make him put it in his vest. He thinks it looks best on the outside of his vest. He has a point. If it's on the outside, everyone can see it.
One thing is for certain, our family is a lot more colorful and fun with Patch around. Whether he's making up future movie plots for his beloved Cars, playing with his Lego guys, or just bugging his sisters, he does it all in style.
Momma loves you, Patch! Even if you can't be 4 for another year.

Monday, August 01, 2011

A Great July

I had a very productive July, quilting wise. I can hardly believe it. My sewing room is nice and cool and July has been, well, hellishly hot. If August is more of the same, then I think we can expect even more finishes.

Just as a reminder here's what I did:

"Everything Nice" quilt for my Quilted Fish tutorial. It has become my favorite quilt. I have to admit to using another quilt last night. I was afraid it felt left out.
The quilt I made for Curly's cousin's daughter's wedding. I haven't named it. Perhaps I should. Maybe "Bridal Blues." You know, because it's blue. Not because she's sad. I would love suggestions in the comments, if you feel so inclined!