Tuesday, September 29, 2009

As promised

I am here to ask for your advice again. Remember this stuffed dog I made for my yet to be born nephew? Well, my sister got finally got around to setting up the baby's room last week. She laid out the blankets, made up the crib and put his dog in there. My niece had a fit. She went on and on trying to convince her mom that I had made it for her. It was her "puppy-pup". She demanded it back.

I got a message that very day saying, "I know what Ava wants for Christmas!" I already had some fabric purchased for something else I was going to make her that easily transitioned to this puppy pattern.

I love how it looks so far. Soft and feminine and more grown up than the cutesy stars I used on her brother's. The problem I am having is with all of these soft, feminine colors does a dark brown nose look ridiculous?

And if it does, the only other fabrics I have are patterned. Would a pattern look weird for a nose?

Are all of these terrible? I hate to buy something because I only need a tiny little piece, but I just can't seem to decide on any of it. I really thought that pinning them to the face would help.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Monday Moments

We planned all week to take my son to see the Pere Marquette steam engine on display in Grand Haven. He passed out in the car and we plopped a very groggy little boy onto the parking lot. He followed behind us for a minute, then ran screaming, "Choo! Choo!" It was like the highlight of his little life.

The engine is 16 feet tall and 101 feet long. It's wheels are bigger across than I am tall. It is just huge. It is also under restoration, so while there are platforms that you're supposed to be able to walk up to get a better view of it, they are blocked off by fencing.

Someone left one gate out of maybe six unlocked. We were very respectful and didn't allow our son to touch anything, but we clearly were somewhere we weren't wanted when we took this photo. It was worth it (at least I think it was because no park employee came running at us screaming obscenities) for that big grin on Gabe's face.

They had a coal tower (79 feet tall), several cars and an old railroad signal light near it too. It was fairly cool. I told my husband that one of these days I will get him to The Henry Ford Museum. Think a train looks huge in the middle of a park outdoors? Wait until you see one in the middle of a room.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Advice please

I actually have two questions that I want some advice on, but I decided to go to the book store and the fabric store and now my lighting is gone to take pictures. It probably wouldn't help to ask you all if a chocolaty brown nose would be too dark for a certain stuffed animal I'm working on without showing you the animal.

I can ask my other question though. In just a couple weeks we are going to visit my husband's grandmother. We will be at her home (a three plus hour drive) 9 days before her 94th birthday, so I would like to give her a gift then. I want to make something, as she is an old lady who lived through the great depression and thinks not enough women today cook, sew, or wear skirts.

What would you make a 94 year old woman?

Monday, September 21, 2009

Monday Moments

We took the kids to the Air Zoo in Kalamazoo this weekend. The Air Zoo is offering free general admission through the end of September, so we thought it was the perfect time to go check it out.

It's a pretty interesting place with rides for the kids and flight simulators for the adults (sadly not included in the free admission). Lots of planes and plane engines on display, usually with cars and military or flight uniforms from their era.

Of course, the best part was seeing this look on my son's face about a million times.

They had a lot of exhibits on military history, which is not my thing, but enthralls my husband. I was pretty drawn to the dioramas of the different battles though. These little guys were just a little bigger than my thumbnail. The details were amazing.

This scale model of an aircraft carrier was just HUGE! I don't know what scale it was in, but again, the guys were just a bit bigger than my thumbnail. I think I had to stand back about six feet to get the whole ship in the shot on the one full length picture I took of it.

I have to credit my friend Keli for the dozen or so pictures I took of the dioramas and scale models. She does miniatures and has just finished a cemetery inside of a pumpkin for Halloween. It is really fascinating stuff that I probably wouldn't have taken a second glance at if not for her.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Embroider your cake and ice cream too

I mentioned in my Vintage post that I had picked up a miniature cross stitch pattern book up at a local thrift store. I also mentioned that I was going to try to teach my step-daughter this crafty skill. She stitched about one row on a little duckling from the pattern book, then went off to watch Jonas Brothers.

Later, my husband told me that she had repeatedly asked him, "Did she finish my duckling yet?" Ha! I think that means I failed.

I have had a fun time playing with the hoop and embroidery floss though. I used to cross stitch a lot as a little girl, so it has been a combination of crafty release and a trip down memory lane.

This little double scoop ice cream cone is from the 1983 pattern book I picked up. It is super tiny, cute and simple. I have no idea what I'll do with it from here.

My slightly less tiny, super cute strawberry shortcake pattern came from this blog I just discovered, Cross Me Not. She has quite a few free cross stitch patterns, each and every one of them adorable.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Monday Moments

If you're not a mother of an almost two year old boy (or a boy a little older), you probably have no idea that there is a new Thomas the Tank Engine movie. Or that Toys R Us held Thomas events at nearly every store this last weekend to promote said movie.

What the store ad promised was coloring, stories, play time at the train table and free giveaways designed for ages 3 and up. I decided that coloring, stories, and pushing trains around was nothing my kid couldn't handle and planned for a full week to take him there.

Do you see the trains? On the plastic Thomas & Friends table cover? Not on a wooden train table as promised! See, I could, possibly be okay with that. Except that I got there a little early and heard two male employees say, "We aren't putting together that thing!"

Dudes, I saw the ad in the newspaper and planned for a full week on bringing my kid to this "event". I know Toys R Us employees knew about it, probably even had a meeting about it at least a week in advance. Why, for the love of all that is holy, would you wait until EIGHT MINUTES before said event was supposed to start to even look at the train table box?

It's just the stupidity and laziness that bothers me. Gabe obviously had zero idea what he was missing out on and still enjoyed himself immensely.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Last night we happened into a thrift store we hadn't been to in years, and discovered, much to my delight that they had a huge sewing section. Vintage patterns (though mostly 80's which I find comical, but not functional...OMG you should have seen the nursing tops pattern, hideous, way before people realized that pregnant women and new moms still wanted to look decent), vintage notions, little plastic doll heads and hands straight out of the 80's, every size and shape embroidery hoop you could think of...

I could have spent $20 in there, and with nearly everything priced at $0.29, that would have been a lot. Instead, I limited myself to four items. Though I am totally thinking about some of the things I didn't buy and wanting to go back.

I got this package of rick rack and this single fold bias tape...I prefer the double fold, and most of it was single, but I absolutely HAD to buy something with the original price point of $0.10. How much is bias tape now?

I completely love how it says, "Guaranteed color fast" and it obviously hasn't faded. Even better, check out the guarantee on the back. Amazing.

I also picked up a 3 1/2" embroidery hoop and a 1983 book of miniature (like magnet sized) cross stitch patterns. They're all very simple, and some very cute. I told my step-daughter that I would teach her how to cross stitch and she could make her own gifts for grandparents and such for Christmas this year. She was pretty excited, then disappointed when she realized that I hadn't done it in years and didn't have a single piece of needlepoint canvas in my stash. I told her we'd remedy that this week.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Monday Moments

Yesterday was an absolutely gorgeous day. We wanted to go to the beach, but by the time everyone was fed, napped and ready it was far too late. So we went for a bike ride to a Hawaiian Ice place instead. It was just beautiful.

When we finally finished our very long ride back my husband loaded all of the bikes back onto the bike rack. He decided that we ended up close enough to the beach to go catch the sunset at least, even if we missed the prime time to go swimming. I'm so glad he did. What a great way to celebrate the unofficial end of summer.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Rest in pieces

Normally I reserve this blog for new things I have created, but today I am throwing away this really cute pirate blanket/doll that I worked really hard on last year, so I'm giving him his own little memorial.

The the dog chewed off his ears, the little ties on his bandana and a bunch of his hair after my son left him on the floor. I'm sad. He is definitely not this pretty anymore, or even pretty at all. Covered in dog hair, missing chunks...