Sunday, January 30, 2011

Place mats

I wanted to make something for my friend's Mum, who suffered in the recent floods, and my friend suggested some place mats. I wasn't sure what colour scheme to go with, but I had some beautiful natural coloured linen so I thought that was a good place to start. And then I mixed in my favourite green/brown/leafy fabric which I bought ages ago.  I just loved the fabric but strangely enough only bought 1 meter of it - which isn't enough to make much from.  But I happily cut into it this week to make these place mats. I made 6 in total. 3 are backed with the brown fabric, and the other 3 are backed with the leafy green fabric.

I'm happy with the way they turned out. I have a habit of rushing to get things done (as I'm sure most Mum's do who try to sew in between babies sleeps and toddlers playtimes) but I did my best to focus on the detail and I think that was a good decision.

Silly me wrapped the 6 placemats before I'd photographed them - so the photo's below are of the 'practice' one I made.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The wettest Summer in Brisbane

While I don't have any statistics on whether this really has been our 'wettest' summer ever, it genuinely feels like it must be. We're currently in the middle of severe flooding here in Brisbane and it makes you feel as though Mother Nature surely is cross at us for something.

We've been really fortunate where we live to not be physically affected by the flooding, but it's impossible not to be emotionally affected by the tales of survival, and seeing grown men break down in tears on the television. 

But I wanted to show some pictures of how we've passed the time throughout this wet, Brisbane summer. We've all gone a little loopy from being indoors, but the sun has finally started to come out in the past few days. Trying to think of ways to keep the 2 yr old busy without her catching pneumonia has been a struggle, but here are some of those times..

Dancing with Daddy in her new 'supersized' raincoat

Showing off her new gumboots

Surfing on her new $5 boogie board

Making noodles with playdough

Feeding the ducks (I realise there are no ducks in the pic - but I loved the action shot and there IS 'flying bread' which is pretty cool)

And what has baby Andrew been doing all Summer?

Lots of dreaming..

Sunday, January 9, 2011

His first mama made item..

So I've realised that to fit sewing into my new '2 child' life - I'm going to have to seize moments whenever I can.  And so it was to be, on this rainy, Sunday morning  - while Lola played with stickers and Simon cleaned the kitchen - I stole time to make Andrew his first mama made item. And of course, it was the trusty, never fails - hat! (first blogged about here) Perfect for a Brisbane summer (although it would be better if it was waterproof this year).  I made him the toddler size, which I figured could be a bit big for him at the moment (being only 4 weeks old) - but he's growing at an alarming rate and too big is definitely better than too small.

I'm yet to 'officially' see his first smile (Daddy says he got one the other night when putting him to bed) - but I think this picture shows that a smile for his Mummy isn't too far off..

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

You're gonna miss this..

I heard this song in the car the other day after my first day at home with the 2 kids on my own (Si had gone out for the day with free tickets to the Brisbane International, so really - it was probably only about 4 hours on my own).  But details aside - it had been a long 4 hours. I couldn't get Lola to go down for a sleep, so to punish her I wouldn't let her watch what she wanted on the TV.  Instead I made her watch cricket.. That makes me eligible for parent of the year award.. I know.  But I was tired, and I was mad at her because she wouldn't go to sleep. But mainly I was mad that I didn't know how to handle the situation better. Oh, and that I wasn't going to get an hour and a half to myself while she slept. 

Then it was time to go pick Si up, and this Trace Adkins song came on the radio (98.9fm - best station ever). I'd heard it before, but it had never 'spoken to me' like it did on this particular day.   And I decided he was right, and that I needed to be told that in the midst of all this - that I'm going to miss this stage of my life when it passes. Everyone always says children grow up so fast, and before you know it they're moving out of home and on with their own lives - but when you're up to your elbows in poo, and your 2 year old is telling you "No mummy - don't say 'no' to me again", you can only 'wish' that the time would go as fast as they say.. 

But on this day, and with these lyrics ringing in my ears - I realised that I've always been guilty of wanting to hurry life along to the next bigger and brighter stage.  And when I get there, looking back a little longingly at the things that I can no longer do.  

But I trust that where I'm at now, is exactly where I'm meant to be. And I wouldn't want to be here without Simon, Lola or Andrew.  And I'm determined that I won't wish these early years of our marriage - or our children's lives away.. I will live more in the moment.  I will enjoy all 24 hours of every day that I get. And I will never again subject my children to cricket as a form of punishment.  No amount of bad behaviour deserves that.

Is it too late for a Christmas post?

I realise it's 5 days into the new year already, but I really wanted to do a post about my Christmas sewing project (that I finished on the night before the 1st December). I embarked on a mass-production challenge (as I tend to do) evidenced here and here. I decided that I'd like to give handmade Advent Calendars to some of my nearest and dearest friends.

The biggest challenge was deciding how to get the numbers 1 through 24 onto the fabric. In the end I went with hand sewing, and spent a crazy week hand stitching in the backyard, in the car (passenger seat only of course) and in the company of any poor soul who came to visit during that time (and yes - I did provide visitors with a spare needle and thread and their help was very much appreciated).

I (and my helpers) stitched up 6 sets of numbers, as I had intended to make 6 calendars. In the end though, I only made 3 (time was not on my side, and I will make up the remaining 3 some other time). One went to my favourite little Australian in Canada. Another went to a friend here in Brisbane. The other was for us.  All 3 were different (yes, photographing them before giving them away would have been a good idea - no, I didn't do that).  The only photographs I have are of the 'bunting' style one that I made for us.

We only put stickers in the pockets this year (Lola is too young for some of the great 'activity' ideas I found online, and we thought she'd be eating enough chocolate over the festive period).

But Simon has an idea of how to use the calendar better next year, and it will also tackle the problem of the kids having too many things to open on Christmas morning and losing interest in the process half way through (not a bad problem to have I realise).  We're going to use the calendar as a treasure hunt clue giver, and spread out most of the little Christmas presents over the month of December.  Well, that's the plan anyway. We've got plenty of time to work out the details. 360 days to be exact!