Sunday, September 28, 2008

Alden Lane Nursery Quilting in the Garden 2008

This afternoon we had the treat of attending the Alden Lane Nursery Quilting in the Garden event in Livermore, California.

It turned out to only be about a thirty minute drive from our house, and we didn't run into any traffic, so it was a breeze to get there.

Tons of quilts were hung up over the nursery's plants. They put up clothes lines and clothes pins to hold the quilts up. Below you can look at all the amazing plants they have for sale.

This year there was even a little jazz band for entertainment, as well as snacks for lunch and cool drinks. That was a good thing, since it was over 90 degrees out there!

For the kids there was a play area that was seriously cool. They sell play structures, so they have huge ones for 'demo' purposes. Our 3 yr old loved it. They even had a maze made out of hay bales.

I put a little slide show together on Flickr for you to enjoy. Not as good as being there, but it will hopefully be close enough.

Oh, and just ran into the cutest blog ever - Mint Basil. Check it out if you have a sec. I'm jealous of her recycled Japanese newspaper basket.

Friday, September 26, 2008

My ultimate apron

I mostly made this apron because I had bought the fabric ages ago and I was bent on wrapping up a few unfinished projects.

The large piece of the apron is an 1850's repro fabric, and I threw an 30's print on there to serve as a pocket. The pocket is designed around the size of recipe card that I have in recipe note card box, and holds it exactly. I think that's pretty perfect. I also put a little pleated ruffle on there made of out some modern black and white striped fabric.

Fabrics from many different time periods coming together in one project is not always a great idea, but I think I'm sorta getting away with it here.

This weekend is the Alden Lane Nursery Quilt Show. It's just over an hour from our house, but I really want to go. They hang all the quilts out in the beautiful garden and they blow around in the fresh air. Not sure if we will really make it there, but if you have the chance, it is quite cool to check out.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Reading my way through the house

What do you do when you're nursing?

Well, I'm not talented enough for knitting or quilting, since I need some balance for the baby. Instead I've been catching up on all the magazines that I usually don't really have time to get through.

Ready Made is of course my new favorite.

In the current issue they mention this very cool make your own t-shirt shop in LA called Fresh Pressed. I'd like to stop in there sometime on a future visit. I think even kids would enjoy making their own T's.

KioskKiosk is also featured this month. They are having a Hong Kong theme, so all items are from there, and even have a sale going on right now. They pick up every day items that are cool and useful and offer them on their site. Everything from kite string to a welding mask (who doesn't need one of these?).

Oh, and above is a photo of the birthday crown on my husband's adorable head. He's so sweet to like my funky projects! I think he makes a darn cute model too.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Psycho Sew

First of all, a HUGE thanks to all of you for your sweet and kind comments about the new baby.

We are still having so much fun with our new little Daxton, and he has easily stolen all our hearts. Even our 3 yr old is in love.

All it took was a little nudge in the right direction, and I had a crazy list of low hanging fruit projects I could easily finish.

Here's my wild list of all the things I decided to finally put to bed:

1) Sew up feedsack pillow for the booth (done, see above in all it's glory). Handy to tuck under an elbow for nursing comfort.

2) Finish apron that I bought fabric for ages ago (done).

3) Sew 34 stars on husband's birthday crown (done).

4) Block chevron scarf - yes, it's actually done, folks, and I was crazy enough to start another one in blue. Can only block half of it at a time due to it being long, and my ironing board being the spot of choice.

5) Fix sad curtain hanging on window of front door with unfinished edges (done, thanks for shaming me into it, Katie).

6) Finish making table runner for dining room table out of reclaimed kimono fabric (half done).

7) Put sleeve on newly acquired 1930's trip around the world quilt (off to work on that now if I don't pass out first).

I think all of this means that I'm starting to finally feel a bit more like myself these days. Recovery from having a baby is still a slow process, but I think I've started down the path at least.

Oh, and if you are ever in San Jose, California, I must encourage you to check out Flower Flour for breakfast, lunch, or snack. They make some incredible baked goodies, lunch yummies, and a very mean latte. Bonus that I can walk there in about 5 min.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The place where it all happens

Is there one single spot in your house where all the excitement seems to happen?

In our family it is without a doubt our booth.

When we got it we were thinking it would be handy for breakfast, but it has become the hang out spot for dinner, reading, naps (if you can believe that!), and even small quilt group sessions.

I started a small doll quilt wall behind the booth, and still trying to make more quilts to go up. I just remembered a tiny 1850's basket quilt that I picked up ages ago at an antique shop, and it has the perfect colors to join the rest of the grouping.

Tonight I took some 30's feedsack fabric and started a pillow cover for a small throw pillow that will go in the corner.

What part of your house do you end up living in the most?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

New baby bliss

What could be better than having a newborn baby in the house?

Hmmm, let me think, yeah, nothing better.

Tomorrow is Daxton's 1 week birthday, and it's hard to believe he's been here that long. It also happens to be my husband's birthday as well.

He'll be 1768 weeks old.

My big online splurges for the week include adorable nursing tank tops for both me and my sister by Larrivo, and birth announcements ordered from Tiny Prints.

It's beginning to look a lot like baby!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Our baby is here!

Finally the wait is over.

Our little one has arrived and is just like an angel. We named him Daxton.

8 lbs 8 oz of love and affection. He's so sweet tempered and adorable that the family is crawling over each other just to get to hold him for a few moments.

Labor was short and as comfortable as one could hope for although at times it was certainly hard. It's always nice to have a supportive and comforting husband along for the tough parts.

Thanks to all of you for your happy thoughts leading up to the big event....all your well-wishes seem to have come true.

More news of our adventures with him soon. We all pretty much feel like we've won the lottery around here.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Our little boy is 3!

Yesterday our son turned 3.

It was a great day, and we all had a lot of fun. I even snuck a little nap in with him, which was a huge highlight.

I decided to make him a birthday crown after flipping through some of the projects that Amanda recommends in her book The Creative Family.

In my usual fashion, I didn't follow the letter of the law instructions. I used some twill tape instead of elastic to close it. I figured with the growth rate of my son's head, it would be safer to have it more adjustable, rather than less.

Also, I loaded up some glow in the dark thread and did a bit of thread painting so it would glow at bedtime.

He ran around all day in it, and was very proud of the fact that he helped me make it.

It was such a huge hit my husband asked me to make one for his birthday. I was not expecting that, but was very honored to make another one and he looks adorable in it too. I have yet to cut out all 34 stars to put on there for him. I think I can probably do it though before his birthday next week.

That crazy floating baby widgit started counting up the more overdue I become. Thank goodness the baby will be here soon, and pregnancy will be water under the bridge.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Becoming an Aunt

Today my darling little sister gave birth to our brand new niece.

The delivery was quick although (direct quote from my sis) "not fun". Mom and baby are as healthy and happy as can be. Personally I think this little girl is the cutest I've ever seen on a 1" by 1" cel phone screen, and I cannot wait to hold her/meet her. We will travel to visit as soon as our little one is here and able.

Note to self: Better finish that baby girl's quilt!

Our baby has yet to arrive, but the above amazing cross stitch is a gift for him from a family friend who does such awesome detailed work that it is a great honor to hang it on our nursery walls.

Also, if you haven't yet read Jennifer's post at Moving Hands about her brush with fame - Read: Meeting Yoko Saito in person!! - do check it out. I so wish I was there in person, I would just do anything to meet her.

Are you wondering as to what the floating baby widgit will do after my due date comes and goes, and the baby is late? Will there be some giant red warning sign flashing "Danger! Could arrive at any moment!" or something? I for one am curious...guess I won't have to wonder much longer.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Japanese baby quilt, boy version: finished

Days of hand quilting: 17

Yards of thread: way too many to keep track of

Viewings of movie The Holiday: 2 (one with directory commentary)

Quilting needles: 8

Used finger cots: 20

Having a baby quilt done before the owner arrives: Priceless

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Quilts Japan #124 - the Yoko Saito issue

I cannot help but do a quick post about the issue of Quilts Japan that I just picked up.

It's issue #124, September 2008, and is completely packed with photos of the work of Yoko Saito (including cover shot). All of her work is done with Japanese taupe fabrics.

Patterns include bags, table cover, place mats, tea cozy in shape of cat, book covers, bed quilts, wall quilts, lamp cover, and even a cover for your house keys.

Could this be my most favorite issue ever? It's up there, for sure.

Cannot live without an issue of your own? Call Kinokuniya and subscribe!! They are willing to mail out subscriptions, which I think is very cool.

p.s. no baby yet!