Monday, November 29, 2010

A gem.

I saw the fabric of this wee folder poking out of the toy bin at the Sallies recently. I picked it up, not expecting much, and found this absolute gem.
I can't imagine how much time someone put into this. knitting the wee people, sewing each page, cutting out all of the felt etc. I also can't imagine how someone could then take it to the op shop, but I'm so very pleased they did! Thank you thrift gods!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The garden.

With all the warm and sunny weather we're been having lately, the boys and I have been spending a lot more time out in the garden. I've really been enjoying it, and they seem to have been too.
Aesop is a funny thing, always complaining if he has to do things outdoors. Often being heard saying things like 'oh maaaan, I haaaate sunny days, I wish I could just stay inside!', especially if it involves something like bike riding. I kid you not.
But the thing is, just like me and exercise, once he gets out there, and finds something fun to do, he loves it.
He's also a little bit of a, erm, sensitive soul. He's never liked to get his hands dirty, or try anything that might be deemed remotely 'scary'. Even as a baby he didn't even really like crawling on grass, and wouldn't investigate creepy crawlies etc.  But times are a changin' round these parts.
Aesop has taken a liking to slaters.
He has a book, that his Nana sent him, all about insects and animals you find in the garden. It has been such a life-changer for him. He is out in the garden every afternoon turning over logs and catching the slaters and snails he finds underneath them. He puts them in a container, or holds them in his hand, and just watches them, fascinated. They are his 'pets'. I'm so, so pleased. I really should have realised that the way to get Aesop outside was through the very thing that was keeping him inside - books! ( Just need to find one about bike riding... hmm..)
Otto, on the other hand, has been head-first into anything mucky from the moment he could move! He spends his afternoons (and mornings!) up to his elbows in soil, tipping in on himself, filling up buckets, splashing in any water he can find, and pulling all off the leaves of my poor plants. There's no stopping him now that he can walk, and I'm feeling so glad that our section is fenced 'cause he's also the running sort! Mischief!

I prefer to spend my garden arvos following in Porridge's (our cat's) footsteps.. sitting in the sun, with the occasional walk to get a snack, or to check what the boys are doing. Pretty glorious.

I'll say it again... perhaps this summer won't be so bad after all!

Oh, and a few pictures of what's growing in and around the vegie patch too, since it seems to be taking off!

Friday, November 26, 2010


I spent yesterday morning tidying and sorting the boys room. I like to do it about once a month, go through and take out the 'too small' clothes, chuck out the bits and pieces that accumulate (ripped pieces of magazine, scribbled on pieces of paper, random bottles tops and whatnot) and have a general tidy up. This time I also packed away all the Winter clothes and hauled the rest of the Summer gear out of the closet.

Decorating a boys room on a budget of, erm, well.. nothing, is no way near as much fun as if we had money to throw at it. I have dreams of cute wallpaper, unbroken curtains, framed prints on the walls, a big set of wooden bunks and an adorable, bright, rug on the floor. I fantasise about simple-yet-amazing Ikea style drawers, ideally filled with equally cute scandinavian designed kids clothes.

Luckily dreams are free and little boys aren't too fussy about such trivial things. Aesop would love any room with enough books, and as long as Otto has his snugglies anything goes. I wish I was so easily pleased!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

List #'s 7 and 10!

In the weekend I managed to tick two more things off the list.
Abraham and I decided, nearly two years after the actual day, that maybe it was finally time to print some of our wedding photos. The girl at the shop couldn't believe I hadn't printed even a single one, she said most girls are in the next day! I guess I just didn't get round to it. We were going to have them printed 'properly' at the photo shop so I was waiting until the wedding bills were paid, and then Otto arrived.. and then it was last weekend.
I'm really stoked with our 14c Harvey Norman prints, and the cute $20 album from Farmers. Seems a lot more 'us' than the fancy pants option.

I also bought an external harddrive to back up all of our photos. My Dad was buying one, getting a good discount, and I thought 'if ever there was a time..'

Feeling very pleased with myself. Now to buy some shoes and plan a childless night...

Monday, November 22, 2010

Baby shower.

Yesterday we went to a lovely baby shower for one of my best friends from high school.
Sarah lives ages and pages away, in Eketahuna, so it was really lovely to see her and her family. She's due to have her second son next month and it's all very exciting!
I remember, when we were pregnant with Otto, everyone asking us what we needed and us telling people that we actually didn't really need much of anything this time round. Sarah has also kept everything from when she had Cheyden and didn't really need anything. I was secretly a little bit pleased about that, buying practical stuff is great, but it's so much more fun when you can just make the fun stuff!
I ended up doing a little of both. I made some little merino pants, from a top I found at the Sallies, and a little envelope neck tee with merino for the ribbing. I got the printed fabric from Spotlight when we were there last week, again with the all over print love! I also couldn't resist making the bubba a wee horse soft toy, every wee one needs his or her own cuddlies!

I was also commissioned to make this lil tee as a gift for Sarah's brother and sister-in-law to give.
All of the gifts were very well received.

I realised, at the shower, that I don't think I had ever really been to a baby shower before the weekend. I mean, when I was part of a coffee group, we would just designate one of our regular coffee meet-ups as a 'shower' if someone was having a baby, but never a specific 'hey, you're having a baby' event! It was both lovely, and a little strange. Having only been to one (very chilled out) baby shower, and never having had one for myself or anything, I'm left wondering how common they really are, and if they tend to be just relaxed get-togethers or if most people go the whole hog and have all the american-style games/decorations/huge number of presents etc. What do you think?

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Patterny sewing.

Three quick, recent, additions to our Summer wardrobes. I seem to be drawn to all-over patterns at the moment, which is interesting for someone who it seriously lacking in the plain basic tops and bottoms to wear them with.

The singlet was a bit of a half-success. The back? I'm really pleased with how it turned out, and it looks wonderful. The front? A bit blah, and pretty darn unflattering. If only they made cardigans that only covered your front, I'd be set.
The skirt was cut down from an early nineties surfie style dress. Wish I could have just worn it as it was, but I'll get much more wear out of it as a skirt.
And another wee envelope neck tee for Otto. I can't get enough of these! I've had this fabric for years, made one singlet for 'Toast' and have never found a use for the remainder.
It's perfectly cheeky for a wee one that has recently turned into a real little monkey!

(Please forgive the somewhat-crappy mirror photos, and my somewhat-grubby mirror in the top one! I was planning to take better photos but the weather is so dismal today that I decided to just post these ones. )

Friday, November 19, 2010

Weekly Croutons.

Quite a good 'Croutons' update this week, if I say so myself.
I'm really pleased with the first of the envelope neck tees. (Using the technique for the neckline from the 90min shirt tutorial makes them look really neat, that woman is a genius.) And am so pleased that everyone seems to like the necklaces as they're heaps of fun to make.
Thanks to everyone who has been looking at/ buying my stuff. I'm blown away and very grateful!

A day in the life of.

Inspired by Clare, as I so often am, I decided to document one of my days.  It was much harder than Clare makes it seem. I struggled to take photos of things that weren't food, struggled to find the time to write everything down and also wondered how on earth anyone is going to find my day interesting.
But, just in case you might, here it is:

6:45 - Otto awake and babbling/grizzling. Aesop putting on his dressing gown.

7:00 - We give in and get out of bed. Abraham showers while I make breakfast (marmite toast and weet-bix) for the kids. I also make Aesop's school lunch.
7:20 - Into the shower and then get dressed for the day.
7:45 - Get the kids dressed, quick check of the e-mail/facebook, Abraham leaves for work.
8:00 - Dry/straighten my hair, put the dishes away and put some washing on while Aesop packs his bag. We all brush our teeth together.
8:30 - Drive Aesop to school. Drop him off and head to the vegies shop to buy food for morning tea and Farmers for their big one day sale (two pairs of shorts and a singlet for Aesop and a few little things for Christmas, in case you were wondering!).
 9:30 - To my friend Shelley's house. Haven't seen her in awhile so we hang out with her and her little one (and the little one she does home care for), eat morning tea and chat.

 11:15 - Home again. Otto goes down for a sleep. I eat lunch, read through the updates on my blog reader (92! Holy Hannah! Must consider culling that.) and write a quick blog post.

12:10 - Photograph the goodies for this weeks Croutons update (which will be up later today). Curse the sun for it's inability to make up its mind whether it wants to come out or hide behind clouds.

1:10 - Otto awake, change his bum and give him some lunch. While he is eating I go around the house and have a general tidy, pick up toys, put washing into laundry etc and do the dishes.

1:40 - Hang out washing, debate whether it will rain or not and put some more washing on. Play with Otto outside, digging in the garden, rolling the ball around etc.
2:30 - Drive to pick up Aesop.
3:00 -Home. We all have afternoon tea (spaghetti and cheese on toast) and I do a quick email check.

3:30 - More washing in the machine. Fold and put away a basket of dry washing. Water the garden and lawn.
Boys play outside, Otto in the garden putting dirt in his bucket, and trying to splash in the puddles from the hose, and Aesop practising his climbing.

4:25 - Start making dinner ( honey soy chicken, potatoes and salad).
Also sort out and clean the fridge, wipe down the table, get the washing in and have another general tidy up.
5:15 - Get ready to head to bootcamp.
5:40 - Abraham gets home, too late for me to go to bootcamp. Take sneakers off and, grumpily, eat my dinner. Too annoyed to go out and do any other exercise.
6:30- 10:30 Watch t.v, resize and edit all of my photos for the update, eat a bowl of muesli and generally blob on the couch.
10:30 - Go to bed. Do a few clues on my crossword ( yes, I realise that makes me sound like a Nana!) and doze off around 11.

Phew! I feel both pleased and very exposed. (Also amazed at how much my day revolves around food and internet though I suspected that all along. hah).  Maybe you could play along and even things out a little?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

List # 20 a bbq with more than 10 people. And a list update.

What: Early evening bbq.
When : Last weekend.
Who: B-side fm djs and families (essentially our 'xmas do'..)
How many : 11 adults, 5 kiddies.
Good times!

So, with another thing ticked off the list and only a month and a half to go, I think a list review is in order.
I've scrapped two of my goals, both knitting ones, so they are in grey like the completed ones, but not crossed out. The 'still to do' goals are in black.

1. Fit into my favourite summer top. - Does up and not super tight- counting this as done!
2. Sew myself at least one DRESS. - Done!
3. Knit myself a cardigan I love. -Am canning this goal. My knitting isn't improving fast enough to spend the dosh, and the time, on a cardi. Stink.
4. Make Abraham a hoodie. - Done! Pictures coming soon.
5. Start sewing to sell again.  - Started this month!
6. List GIANT pile of thing on Trademe. - Have listed around half. Am calling it a day for now.
7. Print the majority of our photos. - have printed about 1/6th of them.. getting there! Still hoping to at least print some wedding photos.
8. Plant a vege garden.Done in februrary Yay!
9. Go to the movies. - Done in March
10. Back up our photos on hardrive/ preserve fruit, make jam.   Done in April. We haven't been able to afford another harddrive yet, this will carry onto my goals for next year, I think.
11. Start blogging again. 01/01
12. Get business cards. - Made my own in June!
13. Buy 2 pairs of decent shoes. - Will order a pair from Willow this week but won't be able to afford another for a little while now.
14. Take Aesop to the zoo. - Done in July!
15. Send (at least) 2 parcels to Amy. - done.
16. Finish at least 2 duathlon type events. - Done!
17. Sort out entire garage. - Done in April! With thanks to Abraham!
18. Finish yoyo quilt. - Done! phew!
19. Earn $1000 through sewing. - done!
20. Have a bbq/dinner with over 10 people. - done!
21. See some live music. - Done Feb.
22. Save over $1000/ have an outdoor movie night  Done!
23. pay off our laptop and buy a new camera. -
24. Sew 10 garments for the kids.
25. Knit Aesop a jumper. - Canning this one too. Will sew him a few instead. He was not interested and my knitting is just not fast/good enough.
26. Make the mix cd to end all mix cds. - Still hoping to get this done!
27. Cover the cushions on the window seat. - Done in August!
28. Get away for a night without the kids! - Not sure how much luck we will have with this one, funds are just too tight to fork out for accommodation. Do you think a romantic night at home, without them, counts?
29. Get mentioned in a magazine. - Does a local news magazine count? But it was about the radio station not sewing!
30. Make most of the gifts we give (this year). - A bit of a continuous goal this one. But going really well.