Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Putting it all away ~

banister decorations

paper decorations

handful of stockings

I couldn't stand it any longer, I spent most of the day putting what I could away of the Christmas decorations that were in almost every room of the house. Try as I might, I kept running into dead ends, little ones needing me, pleading 'don’t put that away', 'hang that back up!!' I really am a minimalist at heart – now if you really know me, you’re probably laughing about now, but I start to twitch a little when things go haywire for too long. I’ll call on friends to come over to help, I tend to get too overwhelmed to even start wrestling with the messes. So the next few days will be purposed for getting the house back in order which means getting our family back in order as well, even the dreaded laundry.

drawing skylines

And while I cleaned . . . Lena found some drawing to catch up on – she’s been enjoying Crockett Johnson’s Purple Crayon books this week. We’ve been reading Harold and the Purple Crayon, which inspired her to draw this skyline from the book, as well as Harold and the North Pole, and A Picture for Harold’s Room. These books are a great source of inspiration for young artists needing to try out their new art materials!

drawing skylines

Yes, finding a place for everything, a good little dusting, and in a few days everything should be back to normal. {sigh . . . }

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

afternoon of cookie baking ~

The afternoon of Christmas Eve got a little hectic and with it, a few sheets of rolled cookie dough got left behind in the fridge. This afternoon, we decided to cut the rest out in penguin shapes to celebrate the end of the Christmas cookie season . . . but who’s kidding who here . . . we just wanted cookies!! Why not one more small batch for ‘ole '08’s sake!

spreading white sparkling sugar

penguin cookies

Whenever I roll and cut sugar cookies, I’m always left with the scraggly ends. Today and on Christmas Eve, I balled this leftover dough and reshaped them into thumbprint cookies with blueberry jam from our summer harvest – what a great combination!!!

the cookie plate

Have a wonderful and safe New Year~! Welcome 2009 !!

Monday, December 29, 2008

a night and a day ~

Last night while watching a movie, I decided to roll up 450 yards of sock yarn so I could get started on knitting a pair of baby booties for a friend that is due this week. I made a gauge before going to bed so I could be sure this yarn would work for my pattern.

winding yarn

winding yarn

Ever since last week when I changed the bed linens, Elise (who is three) has been reminding me that she also wants snowflakes on her bed like Lena’s. I found what I had leftover of the flannel snowflake fabric – it has been 3+ years since I made it, and am doing my best to piece it together with some solid white flannel to make it work . . . still in progess.

Lena's snowflake duvet

for a toddler duvet

for a toddler duvet

sizing the toddler duvet

BTW, I thought I would mention a little something else about the “blue-haired” doll. I decided to make her body using the leftover linen pants fabric found here and had enough and loved the way she came out. I highly recommend experimenting with different fabrics for making doll skins.

All day, I worked whenever I could on the booties. I thought I was so clever to pack them up to take with us to the library tonight. Sadly, when I got there I realized upon unpacking it that I had everything but the working needle . . . rrrrr!

knitting booties

afternoon knitting

Off to find that working needle . . .

Saturday, December 27, 2008

our Christmas ~

Christmas morning was all we dreamed it would be ~ happy and grateful attitudes along with some stunning gifts from Santa . . .

stamped tags

looking at her name on tag

After two nights in a row of being up past 1:00am, I was grateful for it all to come together, for our special day together to have come at last~!

wool slippers

wool slippers

Satch & Sol wrapping

One of the first boxes opened was a combo gift from me to each of the kids. They were these fabulous wool slippers. I had to quickly acknowledge that I didn't make them when they started exclaiming "mommy knitted these!". These are from Satch & Sol and each child loved the exact pair they received, a small miracle!!

All my handmade gifts were acknowledged with love and excitment, which is an improvement from years past. I think everyone has realized my love for making things and have joined along with the excitement of receiving something handmade from mama.

opening presents

quilt from mama

There was lots of playtime after the presents were unwrapped. That to me is the best part, watching the children in action with their imaginations working in high gear. That is actually one of my favorite things I love about being a mom . . .

Picture 1173

her refridgerator

playing snow white

. . . and seeing something that I imagine come to life as well !!

blue-haired doll

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

some cookie making ~

The kitchen was designated as the cookie making area today. All other eating had to be done in the dining room (where we rarely eat since it tends to be my sewing studio 90% of the time). Last night {at 2:00am} the elves closed down shop for the year. All preparations had been finished for Santa’s big night of deliveries and all was put away {into my largest laundry basket} and whisked upstairs into the guest room where it will stay until . . . sometime in the New Year when I can get to it. As for now, I’m spending all my time loving up on my children today and making as many cookies as we can possibly stand!!!

cookie making

cutting cookies


my favorite vintage cutters

These are two of my favorite vintage cookie cutters.

plate of cookies

May all your dreams come true tonight ~ Merry Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

a little sneak peak ~

With Santa’s workshop still going strong, I thought it would be fun to give a little sneak peak what I’ve been working on this week:

sneak peak

sneak peak

Since Friday last week, I had have several projects in mind to finish up this week. One being this Wee Wonderful’s Elf Stitchette that began as a road project when we went to the Outerbanks late August.

sneak peak

This quilt was something that popped in my head,

sneak peak

sneak peak

and the doll . . . that was definitely a last minute idea that came late Friday afternoon. I’ll share more on her later . . . back to work!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

gifts of warmth ~

With today being the official beginning of the Winter season, I thought it would be fun to begin it with a new family tradition of knitted hats, or gifts of warmth. What a fun way to express my love through handwork to our family.

I spent the last three days frantically knitting Jonmichael’s hat. The girls’ hats have been finished for about a month. What is it about the last minute gifts? They are adrenaline building and stressful, but fun stress . . . sometimes crafting stress is good for the soul!!

gifts of warmth

gifts of warmth

We also celebrated with a fun book about the Shortest Day of the Year.

The Shortest Day - a book about the Winter Solstice

May your Winter Days ahead be full of warmth, love, and joy!

gifts of warmth

Friday, December 19, 2008

childhood Christmas memories ~

This year I have had my camera close by recording the special things around the house that I hold dear and enjoy bringing out each year when we start preparing for Christmas. I thought I would share a few with you and perhaps something will spark a happy memory from your childhood Christmas as well.

Grandmothers ceramic tree

This Christmas tree was used at my Grandmother's house,

Santa music box

this music box sat on our console TV in the living room,

Santa music box

this pillow my aunt made for me when I was . . . {lets see 1980} . . .7 years old,

handmade Santa pillow from 1980

driving around on tacky light tours,

tacky light tour

having fun making Christmas crafts - most of all jingle bells !!

jingle bells

I hope you and your family are enjoying revisiting the Christmas memories of your childhood as well and making new Christmas memories this year . . .

Thursday, December 18, 2008

a child at play ~

I could hear Lena down the hall immersed in her play this morning. She had built several log houses and was pretending to have a tree farm and was cutting down all the trees and taking them back to the homes. I ran downstairs, grabbed my camera, wanting to capture the few moments while I could without taking her out of her play moment.

cutting a tree down

cutting down all the trees

Then she wanted me to take some videos and we had a great time with it. I am amazed more and more the stories our children re-create in their play. I enjoy providing our children with toys they can use from season to season to reenact their surroundings. What better time than now with Winter and Christmas approaching to play with some trees and some logs and cozy up their play spaces.

delivering a tree

putting up the tree