Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Snap! Where'd the Christmas go?

I think I blinked and Christmas 2010 is now a date in the past!  It was a low-key celebration and different than some before but I definitely felt the love from my peeps.   It's easy to question why things happen and wonder what the heck God was thinking when you look back on the year coming to an end... but I definitely saw evidence of God's perfect timing when navigating this Christmas missing my mother-in-law and being pregnant at the same time.  It was a beautiful little example of the circle of life and that hope is renewing.  The four principles of advent are love, hope, joy and peace and I plan to make those a priority in 2011.  Thank heavens for my faith in the good Lord above, my husband, and my emotionally supportive family -- I can't imagine my life without them.  Here's a pic of the husband modeling his new comfy pants from my Mum -- she has a lovely tradition of buying us new jammy pants, washing them, and sending them so we have new cozies to sleep in on Christmas Eve:
Here's a pic of me and Mo (23 weeks along!):
Here's a pic of Mo, you can almost see what his wee face looks like!:
This is the insanely cool Basquiat self-portrait Nate had framed for me for Christmas:
This is the sweet owl pendant from my family I strung along with an old key:
And the seriously amazing angel wing ring from my friend Erin:
And lastly, my knitted cowl with cable that I just finished:
Yep, I wear my shades inside ALL the time.  

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas and God Bless Your Little Hearts!

Just a few more days and it is officially CHRISTMAS!!! WOOT TO THE MAX!!!  I've been SO busy baking and shopping and wrapping and card-making and baby-growing!  Here are the sweets I've made this week:
Peppermint Bark:
Candied Pecans:

Banana Bread:

And here's our adorable, slightly Charlie Brown-esque Christmas Tree!
 I wish everyone a very merry and very blessed Christmas!  Now go spread some cheer!  xoxo

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A Crafty Christmas Cornucopia

Oh yes, I am LOVING this time of year... the chill in the air (we're in the low 60s here, brrrrrr....), the Christmas lights on houses, all of the Christmas junk at the dollar store... I'm definitely in the mood for some gift-giving and carol-singing!  

I decorated our mantle last weekend and got a little metal manger scene for 50% off at Hobby Lobby but couldn't resist flanking the manger scene with   La Virgen de Guadelupe.  I figure, she represents the immaculate conception so she's appropriate.  You can sort of see her on the left... and then she is in candle-form on the right.  :)
Here's the manger scene:
As far as gift-giving and craftiness goes I've been spending many a crafternoon making soap and knitting baby booties for a few new mamas.  The booties are for baby girls and I like this yarn because it's not YOU-ARE-A-GIRL-AND-YOU-WILL-SUFFER-ALL-THINGS-PINK pink... it's more of a periwinkle with rose and mauve accents. 
And then there was soap.  My friend at work mentioned she wanted to make soap for her peeps for Christmas so I hijacked that train and have been making soap the past week.  Basically it amounts to melting glycerin in a double boiler and adding color, fragrance and whatever else you feel belongs in soap.  In my case I've made Peppermint soap, Red Rose and Thyme soap with dried thyme leaves, Eucalyptus soap with dried orange peel and Lavender soap with almond oil and lavender buds. Here is a pic of my first batch which turned out too bubbly because I melted the glycerin in the microwave and turns out that's a no-no.  Can you tell the only thing around the house I could find for soap forms was a muffin tin?
And here's the eucalyptus and  lavender soaps curing in their muffin tin beds:
So, that's it for now!  More soap-making and bootie-knitting to do this week!  And then I'm on to Christmas cards!  Yes!  I love love love this time of year! 

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Goodbye November, Hello December! Woot!

And with a WHOOOOOOSH Thanksgiving is over, the family has cleared out and Nate and I are back to our little cozy lives and thinking about Christmas!  Aaaaah, sweet sweet Chrissssstmassss.....

This is the PERFECT time of year for knitting and crocheting and lucky for me, my two favorite knitters were in da house last week and gave me major inspiration and instruction.  My Mom helped me find the right stitch and get the right size hook going for this rug for Baby's Mo's room which I'm making out of yarn which I made out of my old tshirts.  I'm thinking it's colorful, durable and can be thrown in the washer and dryer.  Perfect for a little boy's room.  It's about 18" in diameter now and I'm thinking I'll border it with a solid color, maybe a dark gray. 
And then, my amazing beauty of a sister taught me how to knit cables which I've been avoiding for years and years.  I've had the ding dang cable sticks and plenty of opportunities but have always shied away from them.  This year is a year of "firsts" so I went ahead and added 'knitted cables' to my list for this cowl I'm making:
I love the silvery gray color and am planning to make a twice-around cowl with antique military button closures, should be pretty rockin'... for a pregnant lady at least.

AND THEN, my bro brought me back this amazing fabric from Ghana or Togo, can't remember which now.  But I'm planning to make some hobo-type bags to sell on Etsy using these beauties (here's a far-away and a close-up of each of the two fabrics):

Do you feel inspired?  I do!  :)

Lastly, when my bro was in Togo he had this sign made for Casa Terry. This is the housing building for the orphans that is in honor of my mother-in-law, Terry, who left this earthly realm last March and in her name many generous donations were made to Grace Orphanage
I had sent over a drawing of "CASA TERRY" with the sun rising from it and they added the trees and hand-carved it over there.   Isn't it beautiful?!  

Here's the actual building that the sign will hang upon when finished:
And here, my peeps, is a picture of the children holding the sign.  The adults on the left are George and Florence who live there and basically run the orphanage:
I tell you what, blessings abound my friend, blessings abound.  Even in the midst of the dark and dirty there are always blessings.  These wee Togolese peeps can attest to that!  :) 

Monday, November 8, 2010

Do I have any food on my face?

Happy Monday!  Countdown to Thanksgiving: 17 days... countdown to Christmas: 47 days.  Woot!

I'm planning to be cooking and eating A LOT of food in the coming weeks so figured I'd better sew some napkins -- no need to add to the landfills with mounds of paper napkins when I have fabric galore just waiting to be sewn into adorable little napkins for our faces.   We've got family coming the next couple weeks then again for Christmas and it is just so much more fun to have cute little cloth napkins than to rip a paper towel in half and try to make it look pretty.  It took me forever just to cut and sew seven napkins because I need to either eat or nap every hour or so nowadays.  I do realize that I should have made 14 napkins but have decided to make the other seven this coming weekend and I will make them in warm colors to complement these here I made in cool colors:
They are different on each side so depending on what color of food you're eating you have more choices of where to aim it at on the napkin, or am I the only one who does that?:
I used my pastor's wife's pattern for these napkins, if you'd like to check out her blog and see the fun dresses she makes and sells on Etsy here it is:  www.sosewsomething.com

Ok, and you know how much I love Frida Kahlo?  Well, I've told of my love for her to practically everyone and a girl I work with (who shares my Frida-love) brought me back beer FROM MEXICO that has Frida on it!  This girl is from Mexico and while she was home visiting her family she saw the beer and thought of me and brought it back to the states FOR ME!  Can't you believe it!?!?!  Sometimes the generosity and thoughtfulness of others is just staggering!  It most definitely inspires me to be more generous and thoughtful!  A gift IN a gift!  :) 

Thursday, November 4, 2010

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

I'm a total Christmas music freak and every year it's like TORTURE to have to wait until November 1 to start listening but I find it's usually better than starting sometime around August... and the people around me appreciate my waiting as well.  

I love this time of year with three fun holidays all packed in tight; Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas all one big holiday food and cheer blur.  We managed to carve a couple pumpkins:
Nate's 'kin wins the prize fo sho:
and here's mine:
To be honest, I only carved mine to get to the seeds which I was dying to roast... and then I burned all of the seeds.  Sad day.   But eating three of these pumpkin cayenne cupcakes I baked made me feel better:

Ok, look at the most adorable itty bitty fuzzy wuzzy (practicing my babytalk) babyhat for a little babyhead that you every did see!
My Mom ("Grandmum") knitted this little hat for our sweet little boy!  It is beyond precious.  I'm going to have him wear it at the hospital so he can feel the love as soon as he's out in the world!   I'm thinking of knitting him some little matching booties because it has been confirmed that our boy does indeed have feet:

Lastly, here's the fabric my bro brought back from Ghana last time he was over there:
Isn't it great?!  I'm thinking of making a diaper bag out of it and also using it on some bags to sew to put on my Etsy store - I HAVE to branch out from the jewelry because Etsy is just overrun with it and I'm not getting much action there.  I'm inspired to sew sew sew!  This weekend I'm making cloth napkins so we don't go through so many paper ones during this great season of overeating.  :)  And when Jonathan is over in Togo this year he's bringing me back MORE fabric so there will be more awesomeness to report!

Alrighty, back to work for me!  Love. Strength. Peace. Truth. xoxo

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I forgot I had a blog...

Have you heard of this phenomenon called "Pregnancy Brain"?  Well, it's happened to me.  I'm not sure if it's the hormones or the lack of sleep or the sheer miracle that you've got a tiny child inside of you but holy frijoles, I'm not all there anymore. 

I have been focusing on eating a lot and growing this wee one, who is most definitely a LITTLE BOY!  I've only gained one pound but my stomach sticks out and I feel like I've gained more than that.  He's the size of a peach and with all of his other accoutrements (placenta, amniotic fluid) I can see why my stomach is pushed out now.   It's fun having a little belly to pat and rub and sing to.  Apparently his ears are fully formed and he can hear so I've been talking to him - I won't be able to feel him kicking for a few weeks because he only weighs about an ounce and isn't strong enough but soon I'll be feeling his adorbs little feet and hands in there!  

My sweet friend Lara from Seattle made the little man this special book out of beautiful fabric!  

 Three bells and a lambkin!  The lambkin was our awesome high school mascot. 

 Plastic window with pretty beads!  Lara must like me, she SEWED PLASTIC for this book!  :)

Lara also gave us two adorable bibs and a baby girl outfit because I told her I was sure we were having a girl!  Nate has made it clear that our son will not wear dresses.  Oopsie.  :) 

Here's a pic of our tiny boy, his little hand is up by his ear:
It is amazing that he already has all of his organs and they're already busy functioning... front this point he basically just gets bigger!  We had one detour from excitement when we found out we had a positive trisomy screen but we're feeling good about the fact that the baby will be exactly how it is meant to be for us.  Having a special needs baby would be a rewarding challenge and could open doors for us to change our lives and others' lives at the same time if that's what our future holds.  As one of my family members pointed out, we're good at adopting special needs dogs so we'd be just fine. At this point our odds of having a "normal" baby chromosome-wise is 96%, not bad!  We'll take the wee babe any way we can have him.  It's amazing how much you can love someone you haven't even met yet. 

Monday, September 27, 2010

Happy Monday!

It's a refreshingly cool (75 degrees!) Autumn day and I actually don't mind that it is Monday because things have a different priority and perspective when you're growing a 'monster inside you'.  I'm thinking about the baby quite a bit of the time, making sure I'm eating the right things, getting rest, not getting stressed and praying for his/her amazing future.  This weekend I spent mostly tucked into bed because the hybrid was robbing me of any energy or motivation however I did find the strength to finish my frankenstein dress/tunic!  Here it is:
Not bad, eh?   The top is from a shirt from Mexico which was long-sleeved and white that I dyed this nice blue/purple and the bottom is from a large man-shirt from Goodwill.  

And here are two necklaces I re-worked from of two necklaces I'd made a couple months ago but never really loved:


Ok, see this sweet, precious little baby?
He's tired because I'd just given him the freakin' HEIMLICH!  I kid you not... it was terrifying... he stopped breathing!  I had given him a rawhide bone because he's adorable and OHMYGOODNESS he choked on it!  After trying to Heimlich him like an adult human, from behind and below his ribcage, I remembered he was a four-pound chihuhua and flipped him over like a baby and whacked his back and after a few times the bone flew out and he made the sweetest sound I've ever heard.  This is not good practice for having a real baby... this was merely fodder for nightmares and mental re-enactments.  I NEVER want to have to imagine Bogey or any other baby, fuzzy or not, having to go through that near-death experience!   One last picture of my living, breathing Bogey:


Lastly, here's a pic of my 10-week pregged belly, I'm going to start keeping pics so I can see the progress and now you too must see it.  At least it's sort of far away... but still, my apologies.  :)


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Show and Tell

Ok, lots happenin' here!  First of all, my BFF Grace's BFF Brooke sent me the very first baby item Nate and I have ever had for our wee spawn:
HOW CUTE IS THAT?!?!?!?!?!?  and it is itty bitty!  I can't believe how small and sweet and adorable it is.  Big thanks to Brooke for her thoughtfulness and generosity!!!

 Ok, here's the wee spawn that shall one day fit into that adorable onesie (I think that's the head on the right):

And here are my new bangs ("mom" bangs?):

And here are the two shirts that I'm in the middle of morphing into a really cool dress that I'll be finishing up this week...  so, pics to come of the frankenstein dress:

Trust me, it's cool.

Lastly, there will be a fundraiser for my bro's orphanage next month so if you're in the area you should stop by!  It's October 8 at 7pm at Everyday Joe's Coffee House in Fort Collins... live music and small eats!  There will be tshirts, calendars, note cards, my FIL's coins and some Hollyberry necklaces! Come support the children of Togo!  Woot!