Thursday, July 29, 2010

turtle pillow!

I just finished Alfredo's turtle pillow (using Charlotte's turtle pattern)...wanna see?

I used this pillow from Ikea for flower shape ideas...

I learned lots of new stitches over at Janet's Stitch School and it was so much fun using them in the turtle and flowers designs.

Here's another view of the pillow...

And here's my happy little boy with his new pillow...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

alfredo's turtle

Ever since I finished those stitched pieces from Mary Engelbreit's new stitching book, I've been working on this sweet turtle stitching from Charlotte. I doubled the pattern and am making it into a pillow for Alfredo. I added some flowers all around and I'm so happy with how it's looking...I'm hoping to finish it up soon and I'll show you.

It's so much fun to make things for Alfredo...he admires what I'm working on often saying lovely things like "This is the most beautiful thing in the whole wide world!" Just what I want to hear when I'm making something. He's the perfect little patron.

I got a couple questions about my living room...The beautiful house pillows are by my friend Catherine of Red Shoes. I don't think she does special orders but if you beg and plead, I bet she'll make some to put in her shop.

And the rug? You're not going to believe this but it's from the MaryKate and Ashley collection at Target. See here. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to be available any longer.

We're enjoying lazy summer days, spending it mostly inside working on projects. And this week we started "School"...every morning we work on a new letter of the alphabet and other exercises. I decided not to enroll him in preschool this fall. I kept debating about seemed like everyone I talked to said it was a must. But after we left VBS in hysterics last week, him, not me, I decided to listen to my intuition. We're going to do the academic parts at home, at our own pace, and we'll do other things to help him socially, like perhaps a playgroup. And he's thriving at The Little Gym so in the fall I'll put him in two classes a week. And we'll look at it all again come January.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


I had so much fun making these!

The book that these are from means so much to us. I remember those first weeks when Alfredo first came to us this book and its companion, Lovey Dovey, were his favorites. He would examine each picture so carefully, pointing out the same details each time. Watching him interact with these books was my first peek into what an incredibly special boy he is. 

So when I saw on Mary Engelbreit's blog that she had a pattern for them in her new book, I couldn't wait to get started. 

And I added one more to make it even more special to us...

I think it looks just like him at about 18 months. 

I have a couple more stitching projects up my sleeve, both courtesy of Charlotte. In fact, as I was working on finishing up these, Alfredo said "But where's my turtle?"

Speaking of Alfredo, would you like to take a peek into our life this morning...

He is so proud of these dinosaurs (from the dollar spot at Michael's).

The Parasaurolophus (which he pronounces better than anyone without hesitation) is his very favorite dinosaur.

And just so that you can appreciate how hard it can be to take pictures of stuff to show you...

p.s. Today's the last day to try for the beautiful quilt Crystal made...and maybe it's your lucky click here and buy a net.

Monday, July 19, 2010

what I did this weekend...

This book landed on my doorstep on Friday afternoon and I started working immediately on a project from it.

At first, I thought I might make the super cute sheets with the phrase "Count Your Blessings" across the top. You know I love that!

But there was another project that I just couldn't put off...illustrations from "Booky", one of Alfredo's very favorite and first books. (The book is now out of print, but you can get it from Amazon used here.)

I am so excited about how they turned out.

Eeeek! Can you stand it! So cute! I kept holding them up and saying "Look how cute this is!" even if I was the only one in the room.

Alfredo had so much fun knowing I was making them for him, telling me which one to do next, running his fingers over the stitches.

I did "Bunny" first...

Isn't she adorable? Mary tells in the book about how to use markers to color in the design, which is so cool. But it just so happens that a friend is working on a project for the rebirth of Inspired Ideas with a trick for filling in. I can't wait to show you but for now I'll have to tease you with these results...I want it to be a surprise.

"Puppy" was favorite part was the basketweave I decided to do for his hat...isn't that fun?

And my favorite was the one I just finished...

I love how the pom-pom on his hat turned out...and the stripes on his sailor collar! 

There's one more in the book..."Kitty". I am going to start on her right away and hope to have her done by tomorrow morning. 

And then I have an idea. I'm going to try to do one in the same style to look like Alfredo. At the end of the book after all these fun animals that end in the "y" sound, is BABY and it was always his favorite part. I hope I can pull it off because it will make this project even more special for him.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


I just got the most extraordinary gift from the sweetest friend. She's everybody's friend, sweet Suz. You can't imagine how many wonderful things she sent me...a box full! And a separate box for Alfredo full of stickers and books and stamps and all the stuff he loves.
See that wonderful celluloid dresser set up there? She's so brilliant...look what she did...

She filled them with crafting supplies!

Like sparkling glitter...

And fluffy flocking!

Isn't that so clever? 

Look at this! It's like Christmas in July!

And look at this beautiful necklace...

I'm overwhelmed by her generosity.

Thank you, sweet Suz. I adore you. 
(And I would even if you didn't shower me with presents)

Friday, July 16, 2010

egg carton swap

I participated in a fun swap hosted by sweet Sandy. The idea was to decorate and fill an egg carton...isn't that fun?

My swap partner is Sheila and we had the best time making these egg cartons for each other!

Want to see what I sent her?

I decoupaged the top with book pages and vintage wallpaper, added some flowers and a velvet bow and then I sugarcoated it with glitter.

The pictures I took showing the inside, with everything tucked in, didn't turn out. But here are some of the things I included...

These little chicks from Jennifer Murphy's line of reproductions (now retired) are so cute...
I just fixed them up a bit with new hats. 

This is a simple little thing but I really like it. I just kept winding baker's twine until I made a fat little looked so cute nestled in the egg cup of the carton!

I made this little spool for her too. You can see more of what I sent on Sheila's blog.

Now do you want to see how lucky I am? Here's what I got from Sheila...

 Isn't it so happy?

Filled to the brim with fun trimmings and things...

My favorite is this sundae filled with lip gloss...cute!

and flowers...

and fun trim...

and a sea of buttons and jewels!

What a wonderful gift. Lucky me.

hooded towel

When I saw the hooded towel tutorial over at The DIY Dish, it looked so easy I decided to give it a try. It's a bath towel and half a hand towel. I don't sew but it took me just 15 minutes and I'm just so proud of it.

I think I'll embellish the next one...maybe add shark teeth and a fin on the hood.

And I think these would make great gifts for children of all ages. Don't you think? These stripey towels are from Target and are super cheap...Something like $3.50 for the bath towel and $2.50 for the hand towel. Next time, I'll cut the hand towel just a bit smaller than in half since he's so small.

I took these pictures after bathtime last night and he just kept wiggling and giggling. Then he screamed out "I gotta go peeee-peeeeeeeeee!"

We made it just in time. Whew.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Nothing But Nets

A couple of months ago Crystal of A Little Bit Funky felt the nudge to do more with her blog than just write and share...She felt like she was being led to use her blog as a catapult for showing God's love. I want to share her story with you. I hope you are as moved by it as I am.

Crystal had the brilliant idea to make a quilt, a magnificent quilt, to offer as a sort of raffle in exchange for mosquito nets purchased for those who desperately need them in Africa.

She contacted sweet Jody from Fabric Shoppe...and told her what she was on a mission to do...Jody almost immediately offered to donate ALL of the fabric Crystal would need to make the quilt. Think about the generosity in that offer...that's a lot of fabric to send to a stranger with a promise to make a quilt to benefit a charity. Crystal cried in the parking lot after she read that email. And then a friend offered to pay for the batting and the shipping. Everything was coming together so well and Crystal was so excited to get started.

In Crystal's own words: 
"God is responsible for all of this coming together.  God loves all people.  God loves Africa...and all those sweet people who are suffering from something that is SO easily helped..."
"To me...each piece of fabric in this quilt stands for a family or person...or BABY...that together we can help...and this may sound crazy...but if you are one of the many who have told me of plans to adopt from Africa...the net you buy just may save YOUR future baby.  Crazy cool, right?"

Malaria kills over 1 MILLION precious people PER YEAR!!!

In fact, there are 10 new cases of malaria every second. 

Every 30 seconds, a child in Africa dies from a malaria infection.  A child that is no less precious or loved or held dear by his parents than our own children.
By buying ONE net a family of four can sleep under an insecticide-treated bed net, safe from malaria, for four to five years.
The benefits of bed nets extend even further than protecting those sleeping underneath them. The insecticide woven into each net makes entire communities safer – killing and repelling mosquitoes so that they can’t go on to bite others who may not be protected by a net.
Although $10 for a bed net may not sound like much, the cost makes them out of reach for most people at risk of malaria, many of whom survive on less than $1 a day.

Just us $10 is a couple of latte's...a movie...a shirt...a lunch out...a CD...a couple of magazines...any number of frivolous things that we all throw money at...can I challenge us all to give those up for a day...or a week or a month...and give a net or two or three instead?
Let's help Crystal show God's love to people in Africa.
Each net you buy is ONE entry into the raffle to win this quilt!

And as a special little help you remember what this quilt represents...she added this cute little tag. :)

Go buy a net by clicking HERE.

The winner will be chosen NEXT FRIDAY the 23rd!!  So every net bought by Thursday the 22nd at midnight will count as ONE entry.

Now...pretty, pretty, PLEASE...go BUY A NET...and spread the word!!

(Feel free to copy this post to your blog. Email it to friends. Make a difference today.)