Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

I wasn't able to finish the scarecrow costume so we went with Tigger. Don't they all looked thrilled?!?
Close-up of the Dorthy costume. The hair is yarn sewn on, the black thing on her right arm is  Toto. I did later fix the right strap so that it is closer to her neckline.

I am happy that Halloween is over. We had lots of fun, J really liked the Zoo Boo. The kids all stayed nice and warm in the 30 degree weather.
Now it's on to J's birthday, which is tomorrow!

Friday, October 29, 2010

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.
Showing C how to peek down the kitty door to the basement.

Update: The boys and I enjoyed delicious blueberry yogurt this morning! (C was sleeping.) Hmmmm, what should I try next? Strawberry? Lemon? Oh, the possibilities!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Making Yogurt & Twin List Thursday

I got a EuroCuisine Automatic Yogurt Maker the other day and I am already in love with it! (I put in on my Amazon widget if you want to love one too.) I've made plain yogurt and today I tried my first batch of flavored yogurt (blueberry). It is so simple to use: heat 42 oz of milk (I used whole milk) to 180 degrees and then let cool to 110 degrees.
You are going to need a candy thermometer and keep stirring so the milk doesn't scald.
Then add flavoring: I took about 1 lb of frozen blueberries and cooked them over very low heat on the stove until they were nice and mushy. Then I used a potato masher to squish them, then I pureed them with my stick blender.
Do you like that sparkle? This is way more than needed. The extra I spread on graham crackers and fed to J. He was a big, happy blue mess!

I added 5 tablespoons of the mix to another container along with 6 oz of store-bought plain yogurt and about the same amount of the milk. I whisked it until it was smooth and then added it to the rest of the milk and whisked again.
Oooo purple!
Next I carefully poured the purply mix into the seven glass jars and put them in the machine without their lids on. I put the yogurt maker's clear lid on, set the timer for 7 hours (yep, 7 hours-so hard to wait), pushed start and that was that! Now I must wait and not disturb it.

After 7 hours the caps go on and they go in the fridge to cool. They should be ready to eat tomorrow. I'll let you know how they turn out.

Twin List time:

#17 make sure that while you are "surviving" the day, you are also taking time to get to know your babies

#18 if your husband offers to help-take him up on it, regardless of the tone he asks it in

#19 remember that your previous life isn't over-you just have to re-create yourself.

Halloween update: I took the day off from costumes yesterday, but I'm back on it. I cut out C's suit and will sew it up when the kids all wake up from their nap. Hopefully I'll have it finished today.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

New Etsy Listing

New dress on etsy. Size 18 months to 2T. Go check it out.

The Aurora Loop Scarf

Check out the new item posted in my etsy shop:
It is knit out of the same yarn as the Mobius Cowl that I finished the other day. I call it the Aurora Loop Scarf because the colors remind me of the Aurora and it is one continuous loop. It is 2" in width by 40" in length. Super soft and cozy!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Yarn Love and Halloween

Look what came in the mail yesterday:
YARN! My first order from Knit Picks. It's their Swish merino in worsted weight. It says it is superwash, but after reading some reviews I'll stick with handwash. Aren't those colors beautiful? And yes, that is O's sneaky little hand again. You can also see J's hand and toes in the upper left hand corner of the picture. 
Oh yeah, he's stand on his own now, scary! (The thing on the floor is a trial piece I knit of a butterfly, it didn't turn out like I wanted it to so I gave it to the kids to play with. Is that mean?)
Today I (almost) finished O's costume (I still have to make and attach the ears). I've decided we are going as the Wizard of Oz- C will be Dorthy, O will be the lion and J is the scarecrow. When I was growing up we lived in the Midwest where is was almost always snowy at Halloween. We'd get all dressed up only to cover our costumes with our snowsuits. So I decided to try to make the kids' snowsuits their costumes (stick with me here).
I used a snowsuit we already had as a pattern and made O a lion snow suit.
Can you see how much he loves it :)

It's made from 2 layers of polar fleece so it is nice and warm. The mane is knit from Lion Brand Yarn's Fun Fur Exotics in Tigers Eye and Sensations Cello in Space Yarn Orange (both picked up at Jo-Ann's). I held the two together and cast on 3 stitches on size 6 needles, then I just knit each row until it was long enough to go from one end of the hood to the next, about 20". I sewed it on by hand with orange thread. I thought about adding fur to the wrists but I figured he'd just chew on them.
Close-up of the mane and the cute pouty face.
I have to make a quick run to the fabric store when my hubby gets home and pick up some white fleece for C's costume. I hope to get that done tomorrow.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Off the Needles

I just wanted to pop in and show off what I just finished. After knitting things for my kids and other people's kids, I decided that I wanted to knit something for myself. I've been coveting this yarn for almost a year now. I bought it at a craft fair last winter. It is Touch yarn from New Zealand, a super soft merino wool. I can't remember the color name, sorry, but it is a beautiful blend of green, purple and blue-reminds me of the northern lights. The pattern is from Purl Bee. Fun to knit, so soft and warm to wear.
I hate having my picture taken, so Teddy generously offered his services. Thanks Teddy!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Warm Heads, Warm Hearts

A few years ago I started following Soulemama. I love many of the creative ways she lives her life. One thing (of many) that inspired me was that every year she knits each member of her family a new hat. I figured, "hey, I can knit, I can do that!" Last year my hubby and J got matching hats, simple rolled brim hats since I didn't know how to purl yet.
Do you like how clean and organized his toys were back then? 
The hat for my hubby was too short and didn't cover his ears so this year I unraveled it to make a hat for O.
 The yarn is by Patons and I think the color is called Forest. The pattern is from one of my favorite hat knitting books, Baby Beanies by Amanda Keeys. (I have her book in my widget off to the right.) I started out making the pompom bear hat but finished it as the flour sack hat.
J's hat this year is one that I actually made last year, hence the rolled brim. It is also Paton's yarn, but I can't remember the name. I love how this yard stripes up the side and then spirals on top.
Of course you saw the hat I bought for C at the craft fair. I will knit her a hat later, but I'm not sure what pattern to use yet.
This next week is going to be busy, busy, busy here. My plans for the week include: making costumes for the kids (surprise what they'll be, but I'll share as I finish them), warm car seat blankets for the babies, and some party planning and cake making for J's 3rd birthday on the 1st. So if I don't post everyday, I apologize. I will try!
Back to work!

Friday, October 22, 2010

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

inspired by Soulemama

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Special Delivery and Twin List Thursday

My mom is super wonderful! I received a package in the mail and just look at some of the goodies it contained:
Sesame Street Halloween fabric, about a yard of each. J LOVE, LOVE, LOVES Elmo right now and is going to be so happy when he sees this. Now what to make from it-pillow cases? a Halloween quilt? I'm not sure yet, but I'll figure something out. The rest of the fabric was some beautiful Christmas fabric.
I also received a Simplicity Bias Tape maker! Yeah! So perfect because I like hemming with bias tape, but hate making it. Aren't mom's the greatest!?!

Okay, now onto Twin List Thursday:

#14 resist the urge to make snarky comments when strangers ask, "Are they twins?" or "Boy, you've sure got your hands full". Just smile and say yes.

#15 everyone seems to know a twin or someone who has twins and they will want to tell you all about it

#16 if you went into preterm labor, try not to feel guilty about it

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

J's Sweater and Another Recipe

I finished J's sweater last night. I haven't been able to try it on him since he is still sleeping, but if it is too small for him (lengthwise) then I know it'll eventually fit one of the babies.

 I also have a new oatmeal recipe for you, I even managed to get a picture of it before J gobbled it up. I call it Banana Cream Pie Oatmeal.

Banana Cream Pie Oatmeal

1/2 cup Quick Oats
1/4 teaspoon ground flax
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup water
2 Tablespoons milk (whichever kind you normally drink)
1 banana, sliced
1 graham cracker (or 4 pieces)

In a microwave safe bowl combine oats, flax, cinnamon and water. Microwave on high for 2 1/2 minutes. Let it cool for a few minutes. Carefully stir in milk. Add sliced bananas and 1/2 of the graham cracker crushed and stir. Stick the other half of the graham cracker in whole as decoration and enjoy.

I think this is my favorite kind of oatmeal so far. I love how the graham cracker tastes in it.

Oh I almost forgot to tell you, C pulled herself up to her feet yesterday for the first time! I turned around and there she was, standing up and leaning on a box. These kids of mine are just amazing!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Another Sneak Peek

Here's a little sneak peek at what I'm working on right now:

This is from the Moda charm pack Sanctuary by 3 Sisters. Can't tell you exactly what it will be yet, just a little experiment, but I need to make a quick trip to the fabric store before finishing it.
J's sweater is almost finished. No pattern used, just lots of holding up to a wiggly 2 year old to check the length. It is however VERY wide, I think it's going to hang on him quite a bit. Oh well, it's still pretty nice.
This is something that I threw together last night. I'd made the sleeves awhile ago and thought they'd look nice on a t-shirt. I took one of J's shirts and manipulated them on (I say manipulated because it was quite an ordeal for this novice). What do you think? Cute or dorky? I may try making more and putting them up in my etsy shop.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Thanks for Waiting

I took a short break from crafting and blogging after the craft fair. We did pretty well at the craft fair this year, not as good as the first year, but better than last year. I took all three kids with me to start. I got there a little later than I planned on (silly me for thinking that I could get 3 kids fed, changed and in clean clothes in only 30 minutes!), so I missed seeing most of my friends from my former work. The hubby got off work that day at 4 and hurried over to help out. After an hour or so, he took J to Grandma's and then returned. The babies stayed with us the whole time and were very well behaved.
Last year I made ghost pops which are just fabric covered Tootsie Pops decorated with scary faces. I couldn't keep enough of them out and sold every single one. This year I added a little colored nylon mess to them and made two bags worth, thinking they'd be a hit again. Boy was I wrong! I think I only sold around 5 of them. Anyone want to buy around 30 cutely, spookily decorated Toostie Pops? Email me (address to the right) and we can discuss a price.

I did pick up a couple of must-haves from other vendors.
This gorgeous hank of hand dyed/hand spun yarn is from an amazing local woman. Her etsy shop is Moose in Socks. This yarn is a soybean/alpaca blend and soooo soft. It's a fingering weight, which I've never used but those beautiful colors make me want to try. What to make? (That's O's little hand there. He's a quick one, snatched it up only seconds after I snapped this picture.)
(I know, I'm breaking my own rule here.) I also bought C a new hat. I know I can knit her one myself (and I will), but it won't be nearly as amazing as this one. Isn't she a sweet pea?
 I also started an etsy shop, you can find it here. I've got a few pens that my Dad turned on there as well as one of my Halloween table runners. I plan on putting some homemade dresses on as well as some of my hubby handiwork (Oh yeah hubby, did I forget to tell you?) I'll preview items here first.
Well off to the design board (I really don't have a design board, but I can dream). My next project is to design a blanket for their car seats to keep them warm during Alaska's cold winter, something that they can't kick off. They've gotten too big for those elastic thingys that go over the top of the car seat. I'll keep you updated!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Camera, camera where for art thou camera?

I know, you all want to hear about the craft fair. Well, I'm sorry but you will have to wait until I find my camera. So instead here is another oatmeal recipe, brought to you by my wonderful hubby:

The Wonderful Hubby Oatmeal
I named it, not him

1/2 cup quick oats
1-2 Tablespoons of ground flax
1-2 teaspoons of cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/4 dried cranberries
1/2 pear cubed (maybe 1" cubes)
1 cup water

In a microwave safe bowl combine all ingredients, except the pear. Microwave on high for 2 1/2-3 minutes. Stir and let cool a few minutes. Top with cubed pear.

Alrighty then, off to find my camera!
Oh and sorry about the title, I couldn't resist.

Friday, October 15, 2010

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Playing together.

inspired by Soulemama

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sneak Peek and Twin List Thursday

Tomorrow is the big day! Yikes!! But I think that for the most part, I am ready. Here is a picture of a few of the new items that I'll have at the craft fair tomorrow (if you are in Anchorage, it is at Rogers Park Elementary from 4-8PM).

Please ignore the clutter on either side. There are Halloween/fall inspired table runners using Moda's Pumpkins Gone Wild fabric, hair ties, glow-in-the-dark bracelets (plain and embellished), knit bracelets, knit rose pins, and some turned tree ornaments that are still waiting to be colored. Don't you love the bracelet stands? My hubby made them a while ago to hold up a makeshift baby barrier, but the babies kept knocking them over. We kept them because we thought they'd make a cool ring toss game later on. I saw them a few days ago in the laundry room and thought they were perfect for displaying the bracelets. Yeah, hubby!
Now I just have to figure out prices, any suggestions?

Here's another sneak peek:

I've been waiting so patiently for the Cat in the Hat and Celebrate Seuss fabric from Robert Kaufman to come out so when I saw it available at the Fat Quarter Shop, I snatched some up! I bought both of the fat quarter bundles and two half yard cuts. I plan on making J a twin sized quilt using this technique. The other fabric is called Tweet Tweet by Keiki for Moda. I bought two charm packs and a jelly roll. I plan on making C and O these blankets.
So those are just some of my upcoming projects.

Now onto Twin List Thursday (does anyone even like this?)

#11 Baby A (or B) will wake up Baby B (or A) and the dog next door/ car down the street/airplane flying overhead will wake them both up.
#12 Sleep really IS overrated, but not for the babies
#13 get used to being stared at-everyone seems to have to get a look at twins, Grandmas will walk across crowded restaurants to look at twins, people who you think would be the least likely to be interested in babies will stop and look at your twins.

Okay, back to work now!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Crafting Interrupted and a Recipe

I had some projects all set up to finish while the kids napped, but lo and behold C decided that she had other plans. She slept for maybe 30 minutes and then woke up and was ready for playtime. I tried getting her back to sleep but didn't want to risk waking O up as well so I brought her upstairs. I may try to sew the binding on these table runners anyways, we'll see how that goes. She's such a funny girl!

     As part of our "on a budget" new lifestyle, we began eating quick oats instead of instant oatmeal. For the price of around 3 boxes of brand-name instant oatmeal, you can buy a 10lb bag of quick oats at Costco (which has a total of 100 servings). We've been playing around with different recipes for things to add-in. J prefers just cinnamon and banana (you could add banana to almost anything and that boy will eat it). My hubby likes it with dried fruit. I came up with a new recipe:

Cranberry Orange Oatmeal

1/2 cup quick oats
1-2 teaspoons of ground flax (we LOVE our flax)
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1-2 Tablespoons of dried cranberries

Place all of above ingredients in a microwave safe bowl. In a 1 cup measuring cup add 2 Tablespoons of orange juice concentrate, fill the rest of the cup with water. Pour into your bowl. Push the cranberries under the water so they plump up when cooked. Microwave for 2 1/2 minutes on high. Watch the microwave because this likes to boil over, if it starts to go, just stop the microwave, wait for the oatmeal to go back down and then start it up again. After it is finished cooking, carefully remove from microwave, stir and let it sit for a few minutes to cool. Eat and Enjoy!

I just love oatmeal on a cold morning!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Bad Blogger

     I am seriously feeling guilty here for being such a bad blogger. I guess I did warn you at the start, but I still feel bad. I've been so very busy with making items for the craft fair. I'm really very new to this whole designing process and it is hard for me to bring to life what I see in my mind. Then when it doesn't look right, I get frustrated and want to give up (story of my life). I am truly forcing myself to finish what I set out to do. I would much rather make cute dresses for C and pants for J and O and bake cookies and muffins and knit warm hats for my babes' heads (since winter is so close here in AK), but instead I make (and sometimes remake) bracelets and try to put together a tutorial for you, and, and, and......Whoa!
     Okay, I've decided to use this me-time (AKA the kids' nap time) as a no-crafting-for-the-craft-fair-time. I know I'll most likely regret it, since there is only 3 more days (double Yikes!). Oh well, I need to regain my sanity sometimes, even if it is just a little bit at a time.
     Wow, what a ramble that was! Sorry, again.

Recent fabric purchases that are just waiting to be made into clothes for the kids.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Still Here & Some Exciting News

     Hi, yes I'm still here. I've been awfully busy here the last few days. C started crawling so now I have 2 wee ones to chase around. I'm still working on items for the craft fair and hoping that I get enough done (only 6 more crafting days left). And it's pfd time around here! For those non-Alaskan readers, the pfd (permanent fund dividend) is a yearly payment from the state for being a resident. I think it's meant to make up for the higher cost of living up here. It's based on oil sales and other investments. Well, we've been busy spending it-a few trips to the grocery store, LOTS of diapers, a birthday present for our soon-to-be 3 year old, some fabric and other things. Don't worry (Mom), we didn't blow it all, but it is nice to feel like there is money to throw around.
     Okay, now for the exciting news! Did you see my new Button to the right there? Yep, one of my Snap Wrap Dresses that I made for the Kids Clothes Challenge Week was shown on the Prudent Baby website (where I got the pattern). Check it out here.
     Alrighty then, I'm still working on that tutorial and I'll have some pictures of the craft fair items soon.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Quality Control

I had every intention of posting a awesome, amazing, super-duper wonderful tutorial (well...) but I figured I should probably test it out first. After a few test runs, I found out that it was not as wonderful as I thought. So, back to the proverbial drawing board because I need to do a little more research first.
In the mean time, check out my new Amazon Widget to the right there, down a bit. I added some of our favorite music. Right now we are listening to Nikki Yanofsky. She is amazing and only like 15 or 16 when she recorded this! Check it out.

View from my window-morning sun through the fall leaves.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Craft Fair

     Sorry for not posting the last couple of days. It's been pretty busy around here. All three kiddos are sick and have been for the last week or so (they seem to take after me and hang onto a cough for weeks). And I've been busy preparing for the craft fair.
     For the last two years, I've participated in the craft fair at the school I worked at. This year I debated quite a bit as to whether or not to do it again this year. After thinking things out and talking with my hubby, I decided to go for it. I came up with some new items this year. The last few years the things that sold were small, inexpensive things that appealed to kids. So I decided to focus mainly on that.

    This year there will be some glow-in-the-dark fabric bracelets, knit bracelets, rolled fabric rose hair accessories and pins, some pens and ornaments my super-talented Dad turned, and perhaps some knit ornaments as well. I'm trying to find things that require very little sewing so that I can make them while the kids are sleeping. (That bowl is my Dad's handiwork too, it however is not for sale. Just a cool prop.)
     My plan for this blog this week is a tutorial or two based on craft fair items. We'll see how it goes, it all depends on the kids' moods (like everything else).
     For some kid news: O is trying to stand without holding on to something (he's up to 30 seconds, yikes!), C cut her second tooth, sat up on her own once, and is very close to crawling, and J is keeping us all entertained around here by singing and dancing. In other words-very busy, very crazy, very fun!

Saturday, October 2, 2010


I finished the Chloe Sweater. I can't remember exactly what yarn I used but it is a bamboo/wool blend. The pattern is so fun to knit and I think it turned out pretty well. It actually fits C now as a full length baby sweater. Can't wait to start the next one.

I still have to weave in the ends and block it. Hopefully the ruffle on the front turns out a little more ruffly after it is blocked.

Friday, October 1, 2010

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.