Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Bits of this and that

We are about to celebrate the Harvest Festival at school and each class contributes a different thing to the festivities. So Grade 1 always does these foxtails (good for tossing), and each year the current Grade 1 makes extra for next year's Grade 1's stash. Basically you sew in some ribbons, and leave one side open for little hands to sew up at the fair. I was a little wary to volunteer to make all 16 for this year's festival (making our total number around 50, since last year's class was pretty zealous!), but once I got started it was easy and fun! I am sure you can recognize some of the scraps that went into it!
here's something that will make me glad
for that time of the month
(pattern from Handmade Home)
Grade 5 does snacks (not baked goods, as that is the Middle School's purview). So I will be making a dozen caramel apples also. Photos to come.
Save the date! Jonas will be performing on October 18 in a production of the Jataka tale 'The Brave Little Parrot,' of the Buddhist tradition. The production comes from the creative minds of Kathryn Oliver and Kristi Williamson and will include African dance, singing, and creative movement, not to mention some amazing large puppets. Apparently the wings of Jonas's Eagle puppet actually move on hinges!!!
Need any more be said?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Some sewing, some cooking

Finally, some sewing! Inspired by A Handmade Home by Amanda Blake Soule, I made Mama's Bag for myself. The size is perfect, just right for a little knitting project, wallet, phone, small notebook or book. Amanda has a great "use what you have" philosophy, and I happened to have this adorable, softest, fine-wale corduroy in my stash for the exterior. The lining material was pretty sweet---new, I admit, from Alewives.
Here's the thing though. I realized that the photo pictured in the book was not going to match the dimensions of fabric that SouleMama had listed (what's the deal with that?!). This is a big sewing milestone for me! And I wanted the bag in the picture. So I had to figure out how to get it. I adjusted the pleat size and the bag's height and came out with something pretty close. Yay, me!
And while at Alewives, I got some new fabric for some little pajama pants that didn't end up working out. I had the little dimensions for a round-tummied 3 year-old girl, but without the girl at hand to really visualize, it just seemed so crazy to be looking at a 14" inseam and a 20" waist. So I will make them again, in this fabric, for the tiny girl who ran into my arms the other day upon seeing me. This time I will consult a pattern (not of my own making, thank you very much) and they will be perfect.

bobbin case and thread stand, at last!
Dinner was delicious in the making and the eating:
That is a pan full of sunshine sweetness dressed in oil, balsamic, salt/pepper, and garlic, shortly to be roasted and tossed with pasta and basil and parmesan. An easy dinner that tastes delicious that everyone eats!

In other news: the new rhythm is emerging, now that the boys are in school again. My school work can be relegated to daytimes, when I am not at work, so I don't have to grouch and grump at nights and snarl at my husband. Fall is in the air today, still warm but with a nice swishy-in-the-trees wind. I have a new work schedule that includes not working every Saturday, just one Saturday per month! Hooray! We are going to The Fair this weekend, the older boys will be there on Friday, but we will go as a family on Sunday. Because I want to see this band live (turn on your computer's speakers before clicking)!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Firsts:: Almost Wordless Wednesday

first day in the beautiful new school

first day of the last year
with his class

first day of first grade

Friday, September 11, 2009

goodbye and hello

sometimes the light is just perfect
Sometimes I try to convince myself that something is going to be OK. Did you notice any hesitation on my part in that last post? Re-read that last paragraph and it's all there. And so I keep knitting. Trying to squelch the inner feelings of unease that I might be having. And I keep knitting some more. I try on the cute pink Owls sweater, which is supposed to be "form fitting." And I convince myself that it's snug and nice and keep knitting some more.
I knit and read my homework
And then one day, just a casual conversation with a knitter in the library leads me to the immediate realization that what I am knitting is a pink sausage casing; a nice sweater that will always make me feel fat. So I decide on the spot that tinking it out (the opposite of knit=tink) is the only solution. I have cast on in the next size up. So much happier. Goodbye and hello.
People love us. The Hula Hoop Queen posted to Facebook that she was looking to get rid of her trampoline and that it was priced to sell: FREE. I hopped right onto that and replied immediately. And I was the first.
I learned that an empty bladder is best when jumping on it, though there are no pictures of the Mama on it yet, and no, I didn't have an actual accident. Mostly I would rather knit and observe the jumping anyway.
sometimes you end in a wrestle
And that also, it is nearly impossible to not have a huge feeling of glee while jumping. Smiling is sort of a natural biproduct of jumping on a trampoline. The boys have been on it quite a bit these past couple of days. I can't imagine how Sylvan's legs feel at the end of the day.
Finally, a nasturtium looking so much like it is missing a tiny Cecily Mary Barker fairy friend. Or is the fairy there? Can you see her?

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Happy September

Lately I am doing a lot of creative endeavoring. But not a lot of sewing. This comes in the form of hanging my family's colorful laundry. I decided that since I went the whole summer with barely any laundry on the line (thank you, June), September would be a month of laundry hung out to dry. So far, so good since the weather has been perfect: dry, warm, a little chilly in the mornings.

Also, stacking the winter's wood is another creative endeavor. Today, after mostly a whole day inside (such a crime), I did a wood-stacking, Matthew-inspired workout. Here's how it went: Pick up two pieces of wood, sprint to the woodshed and throw them inside, ten times. Then stack them on the woodpile. Then run back out and repeat, nine times. After 10 I realized that I should do some push-ups in between. So starting with the nine round, I added in the push-ups. Can anyone do the math for me? 2x10=20, 2x9=18, 2x8=16...how many pieces of wood? With 9 push-ups, then 8, then 7...how many push-ups?? Anyone?
I won a giveaway! Skip the Chips (of Swap-Choo fame--and lots of great ideas like this one) had a nice little giveaway to thank us readers and honor her 100th post, and I entered and won! See this adorable little bowl by Elm Studios, now residing on my windowsill? It looks so happy. I'm happy when I see it.
Here's the quick-to-knit sweater I am working on, in a nice bulky merino, the Owls sweater by Kate Davies. It's based on the Penny Straker kids' pattern, but modernized for bigger people ever so nicely. It is slim-fitting, but looks a little small to my eyes. I have tried it on and it seems good and stretchy so far, and very soft. The Mr. helped me pick out the yarn color from KnitPicks. Enjoy your weekend!