Saturday, March 30, 2013

Multiplying like Rabbits

 I suppose Easter Bunny softie limbs can do that.

The funny thing is that I'm making these right in front of my kids, but they are so used to me messing around with fabric that they haven't even noticed or asked what I'm doing.

I picked fabric and cut out the pieces on Wed while listening to Nora Young talk about the privacy implications of Google Glass and the Colour Forecasters, and stitched them together last night while listening to David Butler's lecture of photography on Craftsy from Quilt Con.

Now tonight I'm not sure what I'll watch while I stuff and stitch the bunnies together. I'm hoping I can surreptitiously stuff the limbs throughout the day, and that everyone will sleep tonight, so my kids can get bunnies with fat bodies and faces tomorrow.

Distracted Blogging

When I look at my blog lately, I feel the need to apologize a bit. My blog kind of mirrors my real life conversations these days. When I think back to most of my conversations, I can't remember the end of them because, well, there hardly ever is an end.

Any of you who have children will know (or possibly remember or have blocked out?) what I mean. I am getting to know a Mom at the park and I'm asking how she met her husband and then our little girls run down the hill and we have to make sure they're not going on the street, or I'm telling someone about my latest craft project and then the baby starts screaming because someone took something away from him.

And you never seem to get back to the "so anyway, as I was saying . . . ". Instead you find yourself starting a new conversation because neither of you remembers what you were talking about before you had to find the playmobil viking helmet or decide who gets the piece of Lego that used to be part of Shelob's web mechanism two months ago . . .

In fact right now, the only reason I'm finishing this blog post is because I'm pretending that this isn't happening in the background:

In any case, all that to say - bear with me. I will get back to being able to complete a coherent sentence.  Or blog post, as the case may be.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

March's Mood Swings

March has been quite an impetuous month this year, weather wise.

The beginning of March:

The middle of the month (notice the ice from melting and re-freezing)
The middle of the month (we could see the sand in the sandbox)

Two days later:

Hopefully we're done with snow? Knock on some wood for me, people!

What I'm Working On . . .

I don't seem to be able to finish anything these days. Everything is in process, and I've been jumping from project to project. I can't seem to decide what is the most important - curtains for my front windows? baby quilt? etsy tea cozies? snuggly spring time pants (Emma grew out of one pair already before I could sew the second pair I had cut out)? I feel like I have serious craft ADD right now.
You can see from my stash that I've been busy - everything is pulled out and shoved back in wherever I found space. I haven't had a chance to organize since before Christmas, and I've done a fair number of scrappy projects since then. Somehow, though, I can never actually use SCRAPS for scrappy projects, and just end up cutting bits and pieces off of new pieces of fabric. A fat quarter tidy is going to be in order soon, so I can actually find things again.

 One of the reasons for the mess is these tea cozies, still in progress:

One side of one tea cozy left to stitch and cut and then I'll be able to put them all together.

I have about three lines of quilting left on the baby quilt, and then binding left to do on it. I have a few seams left on my curtains, but none of these things is the priority right now. After all, its Easter this week. And Easter means new softies:

The idea of penguins was tossed aside in favor of bunnies. Two cute, one weird and one zombie rabbit. Right now I'm happy to make weird / gross softies, because at least I'm still getting to make them. I"m sure I've only got another year or two of making softies for Andrew before he's too old, and he just wants money or itunes credits instead. How time marches on.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Itsy Bitsy Spider Tea Cozy

Oops, did I forget to show you the tea cozy I started here?

This was inspired by a series of dark days and the Heather Ross itsy bitsy spider fabric. The curved piecing is the same method I used for this little quilt. As you can see, this is the rain-y side with the spider being washed out.
And this is the sunshine with the spider up the pipe. This has two layers of warmth inside, one flannel and one corduroy (because really, can you ever have too much corduroy? I think not.) and it really keeps the tea warm. It gives the cozy a nice weight and texture, without being too heavy.
I am planning on making more of these for my soon to come etsy store. I've promised myself I'm opening it at the end of March, even if I only have one thing to list. One thing is better than nothing, right?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Crazy . . .

When it looks like this outside . . . 

 It makes me happy there's this inside . . .

 Owen's quilt is together and 1/3 hand quilted. This is such a happy quilt - can't wait to finish it.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Cause and Effect + Sleep Deprivation =

a day like today for my Kindergarten age son who was complaining of a sore tummy this morning. But it was Friday, and I thought he would probably shake it off soon, and so I harried him about eating breakfast and harried him about getting dressed and harried him about not packing his things and getting out the door quickly enough. And so he left with only thin gloves and no snowpants.

But I thought, "Well, if he's really sick they'll call and send him home at lunch time". and "Its not that cold, so he should be okay without his snowpants".

And I completely forgot that he was going on his FIRST field trip today, to a Maple Sugar Shack and I was supposed to send not just snow pants but extra socks and mittens for when his first pair got wet, as he would be out in the forest all day.

And he came home complaining that he was cold, and I realized he had been on his field trip and I had not sent the proper gear. And he said it was okay, that he had run around in the forest and had fun and not been cold at all at the time.

Then he felt sick, and he said that he had eaten an awful lot of maple toffee (maple syrup frozen in snow) and sausage and lots of other things and his stomach was kind of sore. And he was still cold.

And he lay on the couch half asleep wrapped up in blankets during movie night and didn't eat popcorn.

And I shortly discovered exactly what he had eaten at the Maple Sugar Shack as it all came back up all over the couch cushions (and then into the bucket I grabbed, because he is getting a little bit older).


Monday, March 11, 2013

Urban Sugaring Off?

I love following some of the crunchy family-in-the-woods type blogs. All of those bloggers that live in my part of the world (although mostly across the border) are tapping their maples and sugaring off right now.

I was wondering what would happen if you tried to tap trees in the city? Can you imagine? Me and my family trekking through NDG, tapping maples in public parks and along sidewalks. Happy blogger photos of my kids checking the pails as ambulances and garbage trucks wizz by or boiling maple sap on my back porch with photos of the fire escapes of the 10 other duplexes behind my house fading into the horizon.  Me selling jars of my maple syrup at the Jean Talon market . . . it could go on and on. Could I call it another variety of urban farming?

Who owns the sap in the city's maple trees, anyway?

Monday, March 4, 2013

Three Days Down, Six to Go . . .

In most parts of Canada, this week is Spring Break. Don't let the moniker deceive you - Spring is far, far away from Montreal. In Canada, Spring Break is actually get-away-to-somewhere-sunny-so-you-make-it-to-spring break. Well, we have limited funds this year, so for us it is just pretend-its-spring break.

In any case, so far we have had a lot of fun. Andrew and Aaron are so happy to be home after a busy February full of extra appointments and cold stuck-inside weather. But I'm getting a little worried - we've already watched two movies, set up and attempted to sleep in a tent in the living room, had two snowball fights, baked cookies and pancakes, played lego, re-arranged the playmobil castle, had a friend over, and had a hero factory battle. Not to mention discovering the true origin of Skeletor's skeleton face (inquiring minds, apparently, wanted to know) and researching Martin Luther King Jr (because some teachers can't actually let their students have a break on Spring Break).

I am a little nervous that I won't be able to keep up this pace, although I haven't actually been doing a lot of work so far. I've planned an activity or playdate for every day between now and Thursday. If we're still up for it we can go and see the Peru exhibit at the Art Gallery on Friday, but I'm wondering if I'll last that long.

If I don't, I've stocked up on marbles, finger paints, styrofoam balls (to add to our random craft stuff bin), and there is always salt dough or paper mache. We have ingredients in the house to make pizza and cookies and pancakes. Not to mention Netflix and the new DS game I've been saving since Christmas . . . so I guess I've got things covered. I'm hoping to wear them out earlier in the week and then let them chill out and make stuff for the last few days before they have to go back to school.

Wish me luck - it might be an amazing week. Or it might just be a very, very long week.