Sunday, March 13


I haven't exactly been a loyal blogger this year.  I haven't exactly been a crazy busy seamstress this year.  I have been thinking a lot about what I'm doing with this life of mine, and how to make my time here matter.  I've eluded to my Love-Believe-Give-Live mentality before, and I decided to work harder to live what I believe.  That is playing out in a lot of ways in my personal life, but I wanted to bring that to my sewing/ blogging life as well.

Let me introduce you to my new blog Sew..Give!
My plan for this new blog is to feature ways for hand-sewn items to be placed in the hands of people who need them.  I encourage you to check in every so often, find a place that is of interest to you, and join in.  I think people who craft from the heart are always looking for the right place to send their special blanket, quilt or garment - and I am hoping to be a resource for all the generous crafters out there who like to SEW... and then GIVE!

If you have an organization that you would like featured, leave me a comment here or there, or email me at

Wednesday, March 9

baking ingredients

Homemade vanilla... yum!  I used my Silhouette & vinyl to fancy up this bottle from the Crate&Barrel Outlet store.

What are the ingredients?  Well, I bought Mexican vanilla beans a few months ago at a specialty cooking store.  They fit pretty well in a (very well-cleaned out) Prego jar.  I then poured in the Vodka.  After letting it sit for a couple months, it was ready to use.  This is a shot of my second batch I just started.

I think the original "recipe" said leave it sit for 6-8 weeks, and since I started it in February, my next batch should be ready by mid April.

We're also trying the same "experiment" with some mint leaves from our garden, harvested last fall. We're hoping to get some yummy mint flavoring!  Anybody else have special ingredients they make in non-traditional ways?

Tuesday, March 8

peek-a-boo skirt

Little Lizard King is another one of my favorite pattern shops.  Her patterns are cute, easy to sew, and well written and photographed.
I bought this pattern before Christmas, and finally got around to doing it.  She just released a couple more patterns - Ruffle Skirt & Georgia Dress.  They're on my list too!!

Don't you love the bright florals?  Bring on spring!!!

The pictures were taken at Garfield Park Conservatory in Chicago.  oh my gorgeous.  I can't wait to go back!

Monday, March 7

little bits & bags

After I rearranged the house and put the craft room downstairs, we did a little rearranging of the playroom as well.  We happily found a new place for the puppet tree.  There were a few sets of little bits and pieces that needed a home - so they found one there too.

One bag holds the Toy Story set, one bag holds the Beauty & the Beast set, and one bag holds all our little Finger Puppets.

I serged the edges of the bag, folded over the top, and added a ribbon for a drawstring.  Yay for organization!!!

Sunday, March 6

a different kind of creation

At the end of February, I took a trip with my husband, brother, and two other people from our church.  We visited the mountains of western Virginia.

I love a foggy mountain morning.
 I love a sunny mountain morning.
I pretty much love any kind of mountain morning.

We worked with Appalachia Service Project - a mission that is near and dear to my heart.  I worked with them on week-long trips in high school, and spent two summers in college working for them.  I also helped lead a couple of high school trips after I graduated.  Then I got married, had kids, and found myself a little too stuck in suburbia!!!  Time to change all that.  My heart was calling me back to the mountains.

ASP's goal is to make homes in Appalachia warmer, safer, and drier.  That took on a whole new meaning after it rained ALL DAY on Thursday.  We were pouring a foundation for an addition onto his house - for a bathroom.  And we had the luxury of going back to the center for a warm shower. {gulp}

I won't go into depth about all the things that concern me about life in Appalachia - substandard housing, Wal-Mart's effect on small towns, mountaintop removal, prescription drug abuse, and lack of quality health care.  I will tell you about the amazing beauty of nature, resourcefulness in times of need, strength of families, the good that can be done when people care about each other, the honesty and openness that can be experienced when you choose to share a little bit of yourself.

At the beginning of the year I hinted at my new phrase... Love-Believe-Give-Live.  This was part of my plan to put that into action.  I don't know how the rest of the year will play out and where I will be led to give next.  I am constantly trying to find ways that I can share what I believe and give what I can.  What are some ways that you give?

Friday, March 4

animal matching

I wanted to make a little fun something for an animal loving kid.  Can you guess what's inside the bag?

30 pieces in the game - all cut at 4", sewn with a 1/4" seam.  There is a thin layer of batting inside.

Yep - you guessed it!  It's an animal matching game.  I went through my stash, picked out a bunch of my favorites, and used the blue bag fabric for the backing.

Can you find a pair?

Enjoy the game L!

Thursday, March 3

little mermaid

One of my nieces happens to LOVE Little Mermaid.  I put together this spring top for her.

I added some watery shimmery ric rac along the bottom edge.  I love the sparkle!

It has an elastic back for a comfortable fit.

It needed a little something else - so I whipped up a pair of turquoise knit pants to match.

Happy Birthday, L!