Thursday, May 31, 2007

Yarn Egg

We decided to try out a different craft. The kids painted glue onto a balloon and then wound yarn around it. After several layers of glue and yarn, we hung it to dry. The next day, we popped the balloon and removed it. They were pretty impressed with the resulting form.
The next time we try it, I think we will water down the glue to make it easier to spread.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Baby Carriers Galore

My friend asked me to make a carrier for her sister. She bought the main fabric, and I had a coordinating one here. I had bought the coordinating khaki fabric to make a pouch sling when Aine was a babe. I figured it would be better used. There was enough fabric to make two carriers. I thought the khaki was a bit bland, so I stitched up a pieced pocket for one of the carriers. The pieces for the pocket came from fat quarters I bought a long time ago. I think it turned out really nice. I wonder if the sister will actually get the carrier(wink). I may sell the other one or give it away.

(The pictures are pretty poor. We were trying to get them as she was leaving)

Fabric Shopping

Dave has been working nights, so the kids and I have been on our own most days. We decided to stop by the fabric store to pickup a zipper for a dress I wanted to make for Aine. Eamon and Aine loved looking at the different fabrics. They each picked out a few for sleep pants and possibly a shirt. Eamon took the selections to the cutting counter and told the woman how much he wanted. Once we got home, they were disappointed that we had to wash the fabric. Once dried, they put it on the floor, and Eamon rolled around in it.

Saturday, May 26, 2007


I went a little crazy at the 50% off clearance fabric event at Joann's. I plan on taking good pictures of it all, so you can see the beauty of my finds(or perhaps the insanity). In the interim, here are a few shots of my now cluttered crafting space. I have started to work away at the piles, but it will take me quite awhile.

Friday, May 25, 2007


Eamon has been fascinated by volcanos. We have read books, watched videos online and talked about them. It was our turn to host preschool, so we decided to talk about volcanos. The largest in the world is in Hawaii, and the largest is in our solar system is on Mars. The kids thought it was cool. We made our own volcanos out of playdough. To make the volcanos erupt, we put baking soda mixed with water and some dish soap into the cavities of the volcanos. We then added red-colored vinegar. The kids loved the eruptions.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Cooler Picnic

Eamon decided that he and Aine were going to have a picnic. He spread a blanket in the playroom, took the jars of peanut butter and jelly, grabbed some bread, and set out napkins. He made everyone a PB & J sandwich for the event.


Eamon is taking a tumbling class at the YMCA. He enjoys the front rolls, logs rolls and bear walks. He isn't a huge fan of the balance beam. Here are two videos:

Catching the Sun

Eamon & Aine made sun catchers today. It was a fun activity for them. They started putting separate colors in the spaces, but quickly changed the strategy to mixing the whole lot. Each was pleased with the outcome. Aine's has a bit of sparkle. Eamon thinks his looks like Mars or perhaps Saturn.

Lickety Split

I decided to copy another Ottobre pattern to use some more of the floral fabric. It is a super-easy short pattern. I sewed it with the serger. I still have a ways to go with the serger, but I am starting to figure some things out. Of course, it would help if I knew where the manual is. Start to finish was under an hour - including tracing the pattern, cutting it out and sewing.


Eamon takes tumbling through the YMCA. He really enjoys the classes. He loves to show Dave his new talents. Today he was showcasing a somersault. Dave remarked on it. Eamon replied, "No, Daddy, it is a front roll."

Monday, May 21, 2007

Crafting craziness

I have subscribed to Ottobre magazine for a few months. I haven't had the courage or patience to attempt any of the patterns - just the pattern sheet is intimidating. I finally decided to change that. I had some knit floral fabric that would work perfectly with a pattern in the newest issue.

It came out pretty well. This is one of my first true experiences with knit. Once I figured out my machine and the fabric, it was a breeze. I am not totally happy with the ribbing at the neck, but she loves it. Modeled photos later.
I also was finally able to embellish a t-shirt to match Aine's monkey pants. I had intended to make one for each of the kids, but I think I threw away the scraps from E's pants. Perhaps it was when I also threw away the owner's manual to my sewing machine and serger!


I quickly realized after becoming a SAHM that department store and even internet shopping were no longer in the realm. I tried pacifying myself with clothes from the clearance section of Old Navy or the racks at Target. I so miss nice clothes. Clothes that fit. Clothes that are well made. I feel like I wear a uniform most days: khaki shorts and a solid t-shirt. All purchased from Target or Old Navy. Now, don't get me wrong. The clothes are fine, but they sure don't fit. The sizing is off or the look is wrong. I just feel dumpy. So, I decided to check out thrifting.

I am new to the sport of thrifting. I have gone a few times with my sister, but I am quickly being educated on the art of thrift shopping. A few friends of mine frequent Goodwill and Savers. They have found some amazing things. They have told me all about half-price Saturdays (every other one in Phoenix metro) and $1 Thursdays.

This past Saturday we set off to shop. My friends found clothes for me. I tried things, discarded what didn't fit and spent only $28!!! Most of the spending was for the kids or Dave, but I found some bargains for myself. I bought a GAP sweater, Liz Claiborne khaki capri pant (NWT), green roll-up capri pants and a skirt (NWT) for me; two dress shirts for D (one from Express for men); two dresses and a Gymboree sweater for A; and swim trunks and t-shirt for E

Here are photos of what I found:

Saturday, May 19, 2007


The kids and I set out for some thrifting today. Goodwill has 50% every other Saturday, so we hit two stores.

Eamon found some new swimming trunks and a t-shirt with a bee...Aine scored a game, and she has been playing it ever since...

Sunday, May 13, 2007


Conversation this morning:

H: Can you give Mama a hug?
A: shakes head no
H: Can I give you a hug?
A: shakes head no
H: Are you grumpy?
A: nods head yes
H: Do you know who else is grumpy in the morning?
A: while nodding, "Ashlyn"

Crayons, anyone?

Today was a flurry of productivity. I whipped up four crayon rolls. I would have made another one, but I ran out of fabric remnants. I will have to save that one for another day. The holders are super easy. I found inspiration here. You just cut two strips of fabric 5 inches by 16.5 inches. You cut a third for the pocket 6' by 16.5. Add in a piece of fuseable interfacing and voila...Eamon & Aine are thrilled with their new crayon cases. Each has been found rolling and unrolling their crayon holders. Hopefully the recipients of the other two are equally pleased.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Beach Video

Here is some video from our quick San Diego trip. I spotted some dolphins while DAve was playing with the kids in the water. In this video, Malia & Aine are hunting for seashells with new friends while Eamon is practicing his somersaults.


Well, the pressure is off my book group. I picked the first flop. Who knew! I figured it would be safe, since it was part of One BookAZ. It wasn't. No one finished it! In an attempt to clear my reading palette before this month's selection, I read The Memory Keeper's Daughter. Lori first suggested that I read it, but I thought it sounded vaguely familar and had read it already. A friend loaned it to me, and I soon discovered that I had not read it. It was a quick read with an interesting plot. I would recommend reading it.

On now to this month's read, which is Peter Pan in Scarlet. I just began the book today. It begins with the Lost Boys and the Darling children as adults. So far it is a page-turner.

Friday, May 11, 2007

New Shirts

Aine is sporting some new shirts today. She received a box of shirts from her cousin a few months ago. She only wore them once, because they have snap bottoms. She had abruptly potty-learned. Today we solved the problem. I serged off the snaps. I am sure Rachel will want them back when she sees them!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Unique Knitting

A friend of my asked me to knit something for here. It isn't your run of the mill knitting though. She asked me to make her a uterus. She wanted two versions - whimsical and functional. She plans to use them in her new endeavor. She is now a certified child birth educator and doula. I wish her so much success helping women become informed about their birth choices and supporting them in the achievement of these choices.

With the help of the Stitch and Pitch game on Sunday, I finished the functional one in no time. It looks a bit like a golf club cover.On to the whimsical version...

Crunchy Award

I made some cloth produce bags Monday. I figured it was cheaper than buying them from here. They came out well. I used gauze and cording from JoAnn's (nothing fancy, purely functional). I used them on Wednesday, and they work well. I was too chicken to have them weigh the bags frist, so the tare could be adjusted. Next time...

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Better Late than Never

I cut out a pair of lounge pants for each of the kiddos back in October/November. I even took said fabric with me to Texas to sew. Finally, I sewed the pants today. It took me several months of staring at them to finally have a moment to sit and put them together. They turned out really nice. I like this pattern quite a bit. I hope to pick up some more cute fabric for summer pants/shorts, since the pants I just made are out of flannel and it is 103 here!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Another set of wheels

Aine and Eamon received roller skates from Grandpa Cates for Eamon's birthday. Aine has been practicing her form regularly. She often asks Dave to put on her pads and skates for her. Then she proceeds to skate through the bedroom. Look out roller derby...

Dancing Queen

While visitng for Eamon's birthday, Aine and Grandma cut the rug. Aine put on her stole, hat and played the bongos. Grandma danced her heart out. Then Aine had Grandma don the garb while she danced.

Not sure how to flip this video, but it is so worth a view