Archive for November, 2009

Rotting My Brain

I’ve been watching alot of TV lately and I totally believe it rots your brain. I mean, I used to be productive. I used to whip out projects left and right. I would sew, read or just sleep. Then, we got Netflix.

My favorite hat

Now, I watch movies whenever I want. You can watch them on your computer or your TV. How genius is that?! Seriously though, I’m not going to go on and on about this, but man- I love it.

So, back to some things I do manage to get done:

Growing

My mushroom log has gown. We watched it grow amazingly fast. We would walk away for a couple hours and I swear there was noticeable growth when I returned. And the growth overnight was amazing.

Done!

We cooked them up as appetizers for some guests the other night along with some Shitake’s which were also grown on a log. It was so very yummy.

I’ve also managed to get alot done on my newest quilt:

Quilt Kit

I adore this quilt. I’ve been eying quilt kits for the longest time and finally broke down and bought one for mother’s day this year. Kits are nice, but I’m not sure if I’d buy them again. For me, it seems like it takes the originality out of a quilt. I thought I wanted a no-brain-er type quilt, but now that mine is almost done, I feel like I almost cheated. I still love my quilt, but I just don’t know if I would recommend buying a quilt kit.

(BTW- the kit I bought included the pattern and all the fabric for the quilt except the batting and backing which is what most kits include. You still have to make all the cuts for the blocks, but it takes the guess work out of the fabric choices.)

Next up is this tote I made many months ago. I wanted to share it because I use it 24/7.

Project Tote

It’s not my usual tote. This one is lined, interfaced and has pockets on the inside as well as outside. I bought all the fabrics used in this bag from Ikea and I must say that their cotton solids have a nice weight to them.

Inside

I’ve been using it by my bedside to keep everything from library books to my latest knitting project. The best part is that it easily comes with me. We are constantly takes little trips so this bag works well for the on-the-go project that I feel I always have to take with me so I don’t get bored.

And lastly some quick links that I have to share:

I just made these Fudge Babies tonight and man, they are awesome. You’ve got to try these simple, 4 ingredient, no baking desert. Even Chris liked them although he said they immediately made him think of Schweddy Balls.

I just discovered Made. And let’s just say that she is my hero.

I need to cram in a new hobby so I can make this, but also want to sew myself a really, really good pair of jeans and maybe huge leather wallet.

Anyone have any tips on sewing with leather?

*******

ps- The first photo of my favorite hat is a free pattern called Foliage by Emilee Mooney that I found on Ravelry. I made it with some luscious Malibrigo worsted yarn and the color is called Molly. I have more hats to share soon.

Watching

This year’s Halloween was a blast as usual. The kids have been wearing their costumes for weeks since I was finished with them super early this year.

Halloween 2009

Augie was Anakin Skywalker– he cracks me up posing like that!  For his costume, I made the bottoms with a pj pant pattern and for the shirt I simply traced around him while he laid on the fabric. Since the whole outfit is rough I used a thicker burlap-type fabric and did not hem any edges. I loved it- so very easy.

Young Anakin Skywalker

Eddie was a vampire with wings. His was even easier since it was mostly the make-up. We used one of their Harry Potter robes from a few years ago and I gently basted the wings under the arms. The seam can be taken out easily since I worked so dang hard on these robe- I wasn’t about to ruin them.

Vampire

And lastly, Ms O was a fairy. And yes, I cut her hair again. This time it’s way too short, but she insisted that she wanted her hair like Augie’s. I will not do that again. So back to the costume- it’s made using Simplicity 2872. This was a great pattern even though it was hard to understand all the directions as to what was the lining, sheer and outside fabrics. I ended up skipping the tulle and tripled the sheer skirt. I really can’t remember what I did since I wasn’t sure how it was going to work out. I never really paid attention to what I was doing, but kept my fingers crossed that it would work out.

Fairy

It did and she loves it. I made her a size 4 even though she’s barely in a 3 so that she can wear it for some time to come. I do have to warn you to be careful around velcro. Her wings just about ruined her dress before we figured out the velcro on the wings’ waistband was causing huge runs on the dress.

We had a blast with our friends who hosted an amazing party full of food and fun. Trick-o-treating was perfect since the weather cooperated with clear skies and mild temperatures. Now, what the heck am I going to do with all this darn candy?

Oh, and I also wanted to mention that our mushroom log is blooming!

Blue Oyster Mushroom Log

These little baby blue oyster mushrooms have just started. I bought the log at the yearly OMS mushroom show. (What? You’re not a member? Get on it! If you’re not in Oregon, I’m sure there’s a chapter in your neck of the woods. It really is a great community of people.) The logs are a measly $5 if you are a member and you can get others like shiitake, maitake and other varieties of oysters.

Aren't they cute?

I picked the blue oyster because I wanted something that was easy to grow and was very successful so that the kids can watch it. The log has been sitting on my table in the kitchen for about 3 weeks before the first blooms started.

And one last thing that I highly suggest you do with your kids. It’s an autumn leaf garland.

Autumn Leaf Garland

I did this with my kids this morning and it was fun. We walked around the neighborhood for about 15 min collecting leaves then brought them home to iron between pieces of wax paper. The longest part was cutting them out, but overall it was a quick and easy project.  I love my garland- it looks so pretty in my window.

I don’t know how the heck Valerie has time to do all these cool projects, but she does! This will be our next project. You should wander through Valerie’s site if you have time- she has a ton of ideas.