Monday, November 30, 2009

Library Book Bin

The Hanukkah Helper has been creating some mischief in our house each night. Last night he emptied the library book bin and climbed up a fairy tent vine. I'm actually running out of ideas about where to put him. The kids love it and it's actually easier for me to get Talia downstairs on school mornings because she wants to see what he's done. On the other hand, she's waking up earlier on weekends too...

Actually I'm writing this post to show off the Library Book Bin. I've been using it for a while but finally got around to decorating it. I matched the fabric to the colors in the fairy tent, used fusible web and just ironed on the letters and some cute birdcages (no sewing). Every week or two I go to the library and literally just sweep an entire shelf of books into my bag. I barely look at them. There always ends up being a mix of books for Talia and Alex to look through. If they don't like them they get new ones in a week or so anyway (not that it's ever happened!) At Alex's age Talia was still ripping books up but I've been able to get Alex library books for months now. It's so refreshing to have new things to read! We also check out DVD's and many many audiobooks for the car. I've noticed that Talia will listen to some books that are slightly above her level (Little House, the original Peter Pan, today we started The Borrowers) and her comprehension is great. We have the best library in the world. Have I mentioned that they don't charge for late items? Ever?
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Sunday, November 29, 2009

I Spy Quilt

Delivered this new I Spy quilt to a baby boy in our neighborhood today. This was definitely a more traditional pattern than I'm used to making and I enjoyed following someone else's math for a change! (Can't find a link to the quilt pattern, I'll try to add it later...) Amazingly, all of these "boy" fabrics came from my stash. There are lots of rockets, robots, cars and planes. For the back I used more of that Ikea fabric-- the one I handquilted for my nephew. I quilted this with a square spiral that was super simple. It was a continuous line so it took no time at all. I drew on the quilt top with Crayols washable marker again. I was nervous because there was a lot of white but... it came out in the wash, no problem. Of course, I was so nervous about it that the amount of time between marking the quilt up, quilting it AND hand sewing the binding was ONE DAY. Talk about a catalyst for getting a quilt finished!

For a big sister gift I made a little coloring book bag / crayon roll. Next time, more interfacing (a recent theme, perhaps?) and shorter rows for the crayons.
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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Hanukkah Garland

Talia is so jealous of all the Christmas decorations she sees in our neighborhood so I try to make her feel special by putting up Hanukkah decorations in our home. When I was growing up you couldn't GET Hanukkah decorations anywhere so ours were all homemade-- even though we weren't such a crafty family (well, I always was but certainly no one else...). Now you can Hanukkah decorations at Bed Bath and Beyond, Party City, Target and certainly online. I even bought some strings of lights with dreidels on them for this year. I wouldn't want them to be mistaken as Christmas lights, so I think I'll keep them inside.

I've been collecting Hanukkah fabric for a few years now. I wasn't sure what I'd do with it. I still might make a quick quilt but it would suck to work on something you can only use for a few weeks out of the year. I ended up making a Hanukkah Garland to hang in the house. I just looked at different garlands on flickr and came up with the concept. I made a dreidel template, cut them out of each fabric and appliqued the letters for "Happy Hanukkah" on it. I used a Jewish star to separate the two words, tucked it all into some navy bias tape and hung it up. I added silver, gold and blue ribbon in between the letters "for fancy" as Talia would say. I wish I used some interfacing to stiffen up the pieces. I knew I should but I was lazy as usual. It only took two or three days and interfacing would certainly have slowed me down. I'm always in too much of a hurry-- especially when the project is not a gift... A lesson learned, I suppose.
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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Recent Happenings...

We've had a very busy few weeks here at the Dolin household. I took a trip to New York - alone! while the kids went to visit their aunt Lisa in Pensacola with Ron. Last weekend Ron and I took a trip to Puerto Rico, just the two of us. We figured no one is ever going to offer to watch our THREE kids so we may as well leave while we still have two! As far as I can tell, the kids were great and had fun with their grandparents. Then my parents came to visit after we returned from PR. (Didn't I say it's been busy!?) For Halloween, Talia was Cinderella (AGAIN) and Alex was a rock star at one point and trick-or-treated as a fireman. We've been enjoying some warm weather here in Wisconsin-- soon to turn cold again. We have nothing major going on in the next two months, just a few little weekend trips before winter break.

I've been doing some quilting and sewing but I can't share until I give everything away as gifts. I haven't planned out a baby quilt for our new addition yet but I feel like I have time for that (even though it's only three months away!). This has been my easiest pregnancy so far and I have my fingers crossed that it stays that way. I never realized how stressed out I must have been while I was pregnant with Alex until I felt how NOT stressed out am I this time. Does that make sense? I wonder if that's why he turned out to be such a shitty baby! Then again, I would absolutely again take those terrible 6 months for the sweetness he is now.

Talia has adjusted really well to Kindergarten. I still can't believe how little time I have to myself even though T is in school 5 full days a week and Alex is in school 3 full days a week. I definitely feel like a chauffeur these days. Knock on wood, no one in my house has been hit with H1N1 or any other major illnesses. So we'll just try to keep warm and healthy and hopefully I'll be able to share some sewing projects soon!
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