Friday, December 3, 2010

To Ethan, on the occasion of your 2nd Birthday!

**Well I'm nearly 2 months behind on posting this because I have tried in vain to post a darling video of Ethan on his birthday:). Hopefully I will fix the video but, in the meantime I wanted to get this published!

Sweet Ethan,
You are 2 years old today. You are such a sweet boy and so helpful around the house. In the last week you've decided that you want to sit at the table in a chair for your meals, you've tried out sleeping in a bed more, you are doing great with potty training, and you are putting your dishes into the dishwasher?! Your daddy is particularly impressed with your dish clean up skills! Your daddy has been gone for 9 months now but he begins his journey home today, on your birthday!!! Your language has exploded over the last few months and it seems at this point that you can say just about any word you set your mind to:). Some of my new favorites: bible, I love you (only for Daddy for now), sewing, giraffe("wrap"), and on and on. We will celebrate your birthday with Daddy, family, and friends next weekend but today you & I had a little celebration for breakfast. Here's a little video from our morning. I love you big boy!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

...One last blouse...for now

This should be final blouse to sew for a good long while. I have had fun participating in Made by Rae's Spring Top Week and the entry period ends tomorrow! I submitted all 3 of my blouses that I've made in the past 2 months, per the I had never made a blouse for myself before that:), and I think I'm ready to move on to other sewing projects. I have made other things of course, some I still need to take pictures of, and some need to be completed! This blouse is made from red cotton gauze fabric from Simplicity pattern 2594, view A. I made the matching belt that went with it but it made it look like a cheesy mall know the ones I'm talking about. I sort of liked it with a wide braided brown belt slung around the hips but alas, even after childbirth my hips are a little too narrow to show any waist definition in a drapey blouse belted at the hip area. I like the tunic as is with skinny jeans or leggings.
I LOVE the gather and back yoke of this blouse!

The wind kept distorting the neckline. It's not assymetrical, but it is meant to drape thanks to the oversized neckline and shoulder pleats.

Now, what should I make next?...

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Potty training update

Since my first post Ethan has continued to use the potty! Some days he actually uses the restroom and sometimes not. We usually only have any actual "action" once a day but it has happened multiple times a day, a few times. Of course he's gone days where he sits there but doesn't do anything also. He does LOVE sitting on the potty so that's a victory right there:).

I need to suck it up and let him run around naked (on the bottom half at least) for a day so he'll really get used to recognizing the urges and desiring more distinctly to eliminate in the toilet. We shall see if I buck up the courage. We've tried periods of the naked training, with Ethan barricaded in half of the house without expensive rugs:), and it was fruitful.

This will definitely be a process but hopefully he's learning.

What I've been sewing so far...

I have collected photos to post about all the sewing I've been up to but...well I've been sewing so posting hasn't happened until now:).

My deployment sewing started in Houston. I bought 2 blouse patterns before Joel left and brought them with me and then Mom, Ashley, Katherine & I (those are 2 of my 3 sisters for those of you that are not aware:)) set out to make blouses! We had great fun going to a fabric shop in Cypress and then working on the tops. I finished one top while in Houston, although I remade it a bit once I got home. Ashley & Katherine started their tops while I was there and mom helped and sewed because they didn't have skirt weight fabric, like she wanted, at the store where we shopped.

Top 1:

Please forgive the wear wrinkles. Note the grosgrain ribbon accent at the neck.

After completing this top, Simplicity 2593 by Cynthia Rowley, I have a few conclusions. I make my sewing life difficult often in my fabric choices. My very talented seamstress of a mother thankfully cut out the pattern pieces for this top taking care to match up the fabric pattern. I picked this pattern because it was a simple top to put together and it looked chic. The neck piece was the coolest part of the blouse. But when I made the turned neck piece and attached it, it was WAY too heavy! I am on a kick of making blouses because there is a blog I read that has a bit a top challenge in May and they entries are going on now. Another "contestant" made this blouse but in a Georgette. My conclusion is that I should have made this top in a lighter weight fabric and that I might need to reinvent this top one more time before I'm satisfied.

Top 2:


Isn't the button detail sweet:)?

So this top, Simplicity 2892, turned out beautifully. It had A LOT more volume in the sleeve then I anticipated from the pattern drawings but I love it. I used a quilting weight cotton which is a no no for fashion pieces technically, but I think it gives great drama which works with this girly top. I tend to go for more simple blouses when I'm buying clothes but when making them, I suppose because I can control the lay of the flair, I'm drawn to the girl! The button closure in the back does not appear to have much function but I like it all the same. This top is really made when belted. I took some shots of it sans belt and it looked, well, eh.

I have also made Shortalls for Ethan that I have not photographed, but that he happily wore to church last week:).

I am also finished on 2 projects: Top 3, and a Jedi Robe for my nephew. Now I just need to troubleshoot what the problem is with my serger and the Jedi robe will be all ready! I'll probably wait to post any pictures until it gets to the little Jedi himself:), I don't exactly have the frame of a 4 year old boy for modeling...The 3rd top was almost complete last night. It needs some pressing, armhole hems, bottom hem, and some staystiching to finish.

More to follow...


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Potty training

A few months ago we made the transition to cloth diapers. There were a number of motivations but one of the primary motivations was to make Ethan more aware of his elimination and hopefully prepare him for potty training. We knew we wanted to start early but there wasn't a specific timeline. I have noticed some signs that he is ready of late, he can tell me when he needs his diaper changed, dry diapers, he can hold his stream, etc...

Today Ethan had his 15-18 month Well baby appointment and I discussed potty training with my favorite nurse. She was very encouraging and said if we're ready to give it a go. So while we were getting some items at Walmart we bought a little potty as well. I thought we would just try sitting on it and maybe mimicking would be fun and that would be that. Later today I sat Ethan on it before his bath and encouraged him to urinate in the potty. He sat on it, and was quite pleased with the whole experience, did nothing and then got in the bath. Once his bath was over I asked him if he wanted to sit on the potty again and he said yes so he did.

Ethan urinated in his potty. No. Lie. I'm amazed. We'll see how the process goes but I'm just so proud. And so was he. I don't know how regular of an event this will be but I'm excited nonetheless.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

What the walker is doing lately

Ethan decided this weekend that walking should act as his main mode of transportation. We have been enjoying the fruits of that change of events...mostly:). Yesterday he tried to walk out the front door and down the step while Joel and I carried a piece of furniture into the house...yeah.

Below is a sweet video of Ethan walking around and banging his maracas while appropriately wearing his I (Love) Music shirt.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Ethan is walking!!!

Today our sweet Ethan took his 1st, and 50th steps!

He has been slower in warming up to walking then I expected. But of course, his Mimi was right on the money. She gandered that he would be walking by 14 months. Ethan will be 14 months next week:).

I am working on uploading videos and pictures from my camera. I don't think I was able to catch him on it. But, here is a really grainy cell phone video that I did capture. Yes, I'm just that's not exactly a truth I love to be confronted with:).

I know that this means a whole new level of activity, worries, and abilities. It's an event where we get, "It's all down hill from here!" But I hope we're able to keep in mind that Ethan is growing and changing into the man God has designed him to be. It will mean his life gets more complex, as does mine. But I am just thankful that he can walk today. I'm thankful that he gets to experience the world in a whole new way.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Random cooking discovery

I felt the need to share and I decided the blog was the best place for it:). I have always loved to cook and it's been a skill I have worked to improve upon since we've been married. Along the way I turned into someone that my mom giggles at because I try to conserve food so extremely, a trait of my dad's that I abhorred as a child! I was a picky eater and I was loathe to eat any meal twice, much less three times?! Now, oh now...I save everything. It's mostly the product of adulthood and the realities of food purchases versus our food consumption. But in the last few years it has become a stewardship issue for me. That if I am trying to honor God in the way I utilize the resources He has provided then I need to be keenly aware of the efficient and effective consumption of said resources.

So now to my food discovery. We had friends over on Martin Luther King, Jr. day for ribs and hot dogs and it was a delightful event. I also made guacamole for us to munch on before, during, and after lunch:). After everyone left I neglected to promptly stow away the giant bowl of tortilla chips before they went stale. Fatigue set in and well...cut to the next morning and a bag and 1/2 of chips are seriously stale. I have adjusted to a number of less than desirable states of food in my adulthood but stale chips...gross!

So I hopped on the Internet hoping to find a recipe or some sort of use for stale tortilla chips. I found a wealth of information! I can use it as a layer in a Mexican casserole, as a crumb coating for chicken or fish, etc... The basic premise is to treat them just like homemade bread crumbs. But the most intriguing morsel of information I found out there on the Wide World Web, if you just bake your chips for 5 minutes in a 350 degree oven your chips will come out just as crisp as when you opened the bag?! I was, am, and likely will be, amazed that I have gone 27 years without knowing this nifty little tip. There are countless tortilla chips that could have been consumed if only I had know. Maybe this is old news or maybe this is a revelation to you, nonetheless, I thought it was worth sharing!