Monday, October 31, 2011

Missing loved ones

On a serious note...

It's been almost a year and a half since my dad passed away.  How do I know?  Ella is almost a year and a half.   I love that Ella is growing up, but it kills me that each time she reaches a milestone and we celebrate, it's also a milestone of the time that has passed since the loss of my dad. 

He just celebrated a birthday.  Ella was two weeks old.  He was painting our house.  He loved diving.  He was only 44.

There are so many times that I am reminded that he isn't around.  When I want to call and ask a question, when I want to tell him something cute that Ella did that reminds me of myself, when I hear a funny joke only he would really appreciate, even when I eat something really good that I know he would find delicious, too. 

This month has been especially harder for me.  I went to a wedding.  I almost made it through the whole event, until the father-daughter dance.  It was a flashback like those you see on Cold Case.  I didn't have a father-daughter dance (two, equally loved dads, too complicated), but I remember spinning around on the dance floor with Ryan and thinking of the biggest smile of pride that was glued to my dad's face the entire day.  I broke down in tears and went running from the reception hall.  We left immediately.  I just couldn't pull it together.

Last week, Ryan's grandmother passed away.  She was much older, she had a whole lifetime filled with experiences, children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.

I don't know how people do it.  Grieve.  They say there are stages that one goes through, but it's more of a heptagon with lines connecting each point to every other point.  Some times, I deny that he really is gone, the next I'll be angry at the circumstances which led to it, then I'll be accepting of it, then I'll be depressed, then I'll feel guilty that in those last few weeks he was painting my house.  I'm just an all over mess.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Another post about fabric

This is my 100th post!  In the past 7 months, I've posted that many times?  Not bad!

No, I'm not trying to spread out my posts.  Well, not really.  I drafted the previous post in the middle of September, and like I said, I had a bunch waiting to be published.  I received these in a separate shipment and only got around to snapping a few pics the other night.  I really should consider using an actual camera instead of my phone.  I should probably use better lighting, too.  I might even want to compose the shots better.  To tell you the truth? Not going to happen.

Anyway, so on the shopping spree, I picked up a couple more things:

Anna Maria Horner - Innocent Crush, Mixed Signals in Fresh - Yardage
Robert Kaufman - Kona Cotton, Aqua 1005 - Yardage
Joel Dewberry - Heirloom, Sky - Fat Quarter Bundle

Sarah Jane - Children at Play, Balloons - Fat Quarter Bundle

Michael Miller - Camouflage, Gray - Yardage
Premier Prints - Wild Candy, Pink - Yardage

I grabbed the bundles because of the variety in prints.  As I mentioned, for Christmas, there will be a bit of crafting.  I needed this spree.  If you saw my collection before, it was pitiful.  Now I have something to work with!

I took a few minutes (don't worry, I didn't waste too much time) to match up coordinates for the gifts I'm making.  I realized I wouldn't be using a lot of the Heirloom bundle.  I don't want to insult anyone, but it's just a little too old for me sophisticated.  I even tried to imagine using it for Ella.  That's way to grown up, I need to keep her in Children at Play as long as possible, maybe even throw her a Just Stay Little themed party.

I considered hosting a giveaway on my page.  But I have like 2 followers (according to Blogger, if you have me in your Reader, speak up!).  And one of them is ineligible (as if my husband wants to win my fabric?).  So I decided to share my stash with my quilty crafty, co-workers, instead.  If in the future I have more followers or maybe even some interest, I would do a giveaway.  If it's only from a pool of 2 or 3 entries?  That's some awesome odds of winning!

Friday, October 28, 2011

I love fabric

Have I mentioned how hard it is to get anything in Hawaii?  You might think I'm kidding, but unless you live here, you really don't know.  By now, most people are educated in the fact that we are a part of the US (and a state) and don't surf to work at our normal non-hula related jobs.  Many people have even visited Hawaii and realized, yes, we have traffic signals, ATMs and shopping malls.  What are we? Natives?! 

Anyway, we may be on par with the rest of the country -- with Whole Foods, Target, Victoria Secret, and Bath & Body Works, but we still don't have IKEA (no fabric and quick furniture) and we still don't have a really good craft store.  We have Ben Franklin, which carries the bulk of all crafting necessities, but it comes at a steep price.  We have fabric stores like Kaimuki Dry Goods and FabricMart, but they rarely get the new releases I see popping up in blogland and usually focus mainly on Hawaiian prints.  Honestly, most of my craft supply is obtained from WalMart.  I kid you not.

Thankfully, the invent and rise of the Internet has made shopping MUCH easier!  Last month, Ryan let me go on a fabric spree (what can I say, lots of sales and free shipping is an easy sell).  

Sarah Jane - Children at Play, Playtime - Fat Quarter Bundle

Michael Miller - Play Dot and Zoology in Sea - Yardage

David Textiles - Hello Kitty - Fat Quarter Bundle

Zoe Pearn Designs - Alphabet Soup Girl - Yardage

Monday, October 17, 2011

Shower gifts - from before

I upgraded the IOS on my phone and realized (after 15 minutes of sync time) that I should take some photos off the camera.  It turns out I had some pictures of a mother-baby set I made back in January!  Before I deleted them, I uploaded them to share.  I made a hospital gown, nursing cover, and a set of 6 burp cloths.

The story behind the gift:  The shower was for a good friend, and I was a little late on starting the gift (try the night before the shower).  Actually, we all were a little late.

My other friend and I were in charge of games and prizes (she came over the afternoon before the shower).  BUT, let me tell you, we had this awesome idea to do a blind hunt for baby items. We took a large computer box, cut out a pair of arm holes (2 sets across from each other) and wrapped it with pretty paper.  We then filled the box with an assortment of baby items (bulb syringe, baby bottle, sippy cup, medicine syringe, diaper, bibs, onesie, feeding spoons, pacifier, lotion, baby food jar, etc) and similarly shape/textured gag items (new XL disposable undies from the hospital, XL pad from the hospital, baby food jar filled with silly stuff, pens, water-soiled diaper, etc).  We had the party split into two teams and had them race to find items using only their sense of touch to identify items.  It was hilarious!  We had the father of the mother-to-be pull out the XL undies thinking it was a onesie.  We had another person pull out a baby jar filled with Tums instead of fruit puree.  The best part, the baby items were all from the couple's registry anyway, so as a bonus they mostly got items they requested!

The prizes for the games were cute.  We did a variety of snacks, reusable containers, and a few small crafty items.  I really should have taken pictures of those.  They were really cute.  I guess I can recreate them for another event and post about it.

Anyway, here are my creations:

Hospital gown front, with contrast bias binding on neckline

Hospital gown back, with tie at neck

Hospital gown shoulder, velcro enclosure

Hospital gown and nursing cover

Nursing cover, contrast neck straps

Nursing cover, inside terry pocket detail

Nursing cover and burp cloths

Burp cloths

These are all super easy to make.  I honestly started this the night before and managed to finish everything before the party (which was at noon).  I really should make a bunch for reserve gifts.  For close friends, of course I would pick out prints that match their baby theme, but now that I'm in that age group that is constantly having kids, it makes sense to have quick gifts at the ready.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Busy bodies

I'm still around!  I'm still crafting...sorta.  Just not blogging.  It's been a crazy few weeks.

I put crafting on hold so I could clean the house.  Let's just say we had a bunch of guests come through and we didn't need them to know I was stash builder and dust hoarder.  The sewing machine went into hiding and only recently peeked out from it's cover.

I made two dresses from a jersey knit sheet I snagged from Ross'.  The dresses are navy blue and gorgeous when paired with my natural brown leather belt to cinch the waist.  I didn't have a matching purse to complement the outfit, so I had to save my lunch money.  Ahh the cost of coordination and looking fabulous!  I guess I should've taken some pictures of the complete outfit (not that I need proof I did it, but I do have this blog after all).  I really liked how they turned out, I actually wore one to a work function and received a lot of compliments! 

I'm also studying for the PHR exam, which I will be taking in 2 months.  It's been a few years since college and a few years since the last time I took an exam (that I needed to learn and study), so I've limited my crafting (and DVR watching) to study.  I DO realize that I need to find time for both, as Christmas is 10 weeks away and a majority of the gifts include handmade items.  I've created a schedule with chapters, review, and test prep, by week, so if I can finish the tasks for the week, the rest of the time I can spend crafting.  Let's just say I have yet to finish my weekly plan early.

If you don't see anything from me from now until December 10th, I'm busy.  If you do, scold me and tell me to get back to studying!  Just kidding :)  I actually have a few posts "in the edit" so I may update them and get them out of draft limbo.  But I really must study.  Really.

Here's a little peek of how it's coming with the holiday goodies:
Twill tape labels (picture from

No kidding, "peek"!  Haha, it's not actually anything I've made.  It's only the labels I've ordered to stick on the handmade items.  Anyway, I got the idea from Crafterhours and knew I wanted to do something similar for my items (not that I sell them or anything, but it definitely adds a professional touch).  I contacted the folks over at and within a few hours I had a working sample and was able to place my order.  By the next day, I was invoiced, paid out the amount, and my order was in the mail.  I love great customer service!  They just came in, and they are lovely.  The pictures do not do these justice.  I think I may experiment with some grosgrain in the future.