Wednesday, March 18, 2009


  • getting to sleep in late (uh to 8am) because it's Spring Break
  • having the most beautiful day outside that was just like that fabulous March of '97 day in Austin when I fell in love with the city (and with all the fresh oj and chips and salsa I consumed)
  • the baby finally feeling better after 5 days of sickness
  • the Heather Ross blog tour
  • finding out that an Alabama Chanin workshop is coming to my city in May (but wishing I had some extra money so I could attend)
  • getting the haircut that should have happened over a month ago
  • eating paletas (I had tangerine; Ely had chocolate strawberry)
  • playing at the park for hours, though it didn't feel that long, and having fun with the school friends who were also there
  • watching my son take off on his balance bike
  • watching my daughter swing and slide with complete joy on her face
  • being the first person to check out the first copy of Molly Wizenberg's A Homemade Life from the library
  • the husband coming home late so I can start reading A Homemade Life right away (well as soon as the kids are asleep)
  • eating reuben sandwiches for dinner with leftover chocolate chip cookie tart for dessert

Monday, March 16, 2009

Mission: Impossible

My almost-4 year old son's room is, more often than not, a disaster. He has a big open floor space for playing and takes advantage of it. We've successfully resisted accumulating lots of toys over the years, but he loves legos and puzzles so his floor is often carpeted in little plastic cubes and amorphous cardboard shapes. He has shelves and 10 or so labeled bins for all the different types of toys (legos, puzzles, sound, wood, vehicles, etc), but nothing ever seems to get back into its original place. Ely also attends a Montessori preschool and he must put away his work (what they call their activity) before he can get a new work out. Yet somehow, that practice has never translated to home. Ely also loves books, which his Dad and I are thrilled about because we love books too. In fact, we put a moratorium on book buying 4 years ago because we were out of space, and also needed to remove that line item from our budget. For any holiday/special occasion that involves presents, Ely receives books as gifts and he also gets one book every month from Dolly Parton (I love Dolly and love her even more now.) So on top of the lego/puzzle carpet is a usually a secondary layer of books.

In order to combat this mess, I've been meaning to sew (oh for only about 6 months now ) some cloth bags in which to store his puzzles. Puzzles come in their own boxes, but in my house those boxes are usually destroyed then added to the recycling bin. Recently, I saw Betz's tutorial and then saw how Blair used the tutorial to make her daughter some bags for her treasures. Heather Ross also has a pattern for drawstring bags in her new book, Weekend Sewing, but I don't have a copy of the book yet. On Saturday and Sunday, I has some kid-free time and a clean sewing table so I started on my own drawstring bags.
The bags were so simple to make. Even though I'm a slow sewer, I had 5 made by the end of naptime on Sunday. I used the 13X18 inch size from the tutorial for the larger bags, then raided my remnant stash for the smaller bags. Because these were "boy" bags, I was able to finish off some favorite fabric (Alexander Henry's 2-D Zoo) as well as some blue fabric I've never been very fond of. Betz used a serger to contain the inside raw edges of her bags. I don't have a serger, but a zig zag stitch with my Janome's overlock foot made a lovely serged-like edge. That was probably my favorite part of the whole project, because I learned how to do something new with my sewing machine. Or maybe it was the post-naptime clean room, with puzzles contained in pretty drawstring bags and put away in their labeled bin. I couldn't get Ely to use all of the drawstring bags for puzzles. He promptly filled one up with "sleep friends" (aka small stuffed animals), so he could easily take them with him in the car in case his baby sister fell asleep on the way to their grandparents' house.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Is it March yet?

Why, yes! It is! I guess that means I can finally abandon the "February Funk" post that has been sitting on my computer, half written, for over 2 weeks now. February was just not my month, but that doesn't matter anymore because it's over. I have a good feeling about this month, and will be back tomorrow with a post all about March 4th.

Also - I'm not officially participating in green week, but this photo would fit perfectly! (Ignore the fact that I was outside taking pictures of snow).