Archive for the ‘Kids’ Category


Back again and with something crafty!

Finally finished poor Eddie’s school bag- um, 6 months late.

Eddie has a bag!

Augie has had his since the beginning of the year, but I was too lazy to do two bags.


The size of these was important. Remember Augie’s Kindergarten backpack? That thing is a pain to get things in and out of! These were going to fit everything including their lunchbox and huge library books, but not too big that they couldn’t carry them.

Dimensional pocket

There aren’t any inside pockets since I know they’d never use them. Girls maybe, but boys don’t use inside pockets.  The outside pocket is a must since their morning snack must be in there for fast and easy access. I learned how to do this “dimensional pocket” from Cindy Taylor Oates’ great pattern for Backpacks. (I recommend highly this pattern!) It was so easy to do and came out perfectly every time.

The tricky part!

The hardest part is that top zipper. Since this was my pattern, I had to work hard to get all the pieces to fit.  Now I know why patterns with top zippers are never sewn in at the ends. I did sew my ends in. I had to rip it out many times because it was hard to get the corners neat and everything matched up.   Do you see my mistake?

I think I went through 10 needles sewing these two bags. There’s stiff peltex interfacing throughout and two layers of home dec fabric. Then there was the handles which were interfaced as well. There was some major cursing going on!

Boy's School Bags

Needless to say, my trusty Singer was put to the test! I love that machine.

(The mistake was the top piece with the zipper. The lining camo fabric is on one side and the outside skateboard fabric is on the other. I know it’s hard to tell and the fabrics match, but I can tell. It drives me nuts.)



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.


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.


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.

Summer Stuff

Before Summer flies on by, I wanted to document a little of what we’ve been up to.

First off, the boys climbed Black Butte.  This picture was taken 2 days before a large forest fire destroyed almost 600 acres very close to where these two sat.  Chris plans on taking them back up there next year so they can see the before and after damage of a fire.

Top of Black Butte

It was Eddie’s first time climbing the butte and Augie’s second. Nope, I didn’t go, but I’m thinking about it. (Climbing a mountain is still second to shopping in Sisters.)  They had a great time and I was especially happy that they both came back with zero blisters.  I guess spending a little more dough on real hiking boots pays off.

The boys also got to go sailing on the Willamette.  Although it’s a Superfund Site, eeeeew, they still had a blast jibing and tacking (or whatever the heck it’s called) on the river.  We think Augie will be sailing around the world sometime in his lifetime because he stayed on top the boat in the front the entire time.

Saling on the Willamette

He loved it.  Eddie was still feeling his sea legs at 9pm that night.  Poor kid.

And lastly, we rescued a hawk.

Injured Sharp-Shinned Hawk

I found this sharp-shinned hawk on our deck one morning and noticed he could not fly high enough to clear the deck railing.  He escaped into our backyard by slipping through railing and gliding down into the backyard.

We have a green space off of our backyard so it was easy to “corner” the hawk and catch him with a net.  The kids did great slowly and gently herding him towards Chris so that he didn’t have to chase it down.

Hawks' tailfeathers

We turned the hawk into our Audubon shelter where hopefully he will recover.  We should get a call soon letting us know the diagnosis and if he does recover enough to be released, we can watch them release the hawk back into our green space.  Isn’t that so cool?

Well, that’s my summer.  I’m still working on many little sewing projects, but am too distracted by summer to get it together enough for a blog post.  I am going to get my skirt done for my sew-along!  How is yours going? 😉

Ms O is Three

Ms O's 3rd Birthday!

Dang.  Weeks have passed and I completely forgot to mention Livvie’s 3rd birthday!  Poor third child.  Anyway, we had a great time and so did she.

July 2008

We had her party at one of our local parks and had only a few people join us.

Ms I Driving

Ya know…? It was kind-a nice. I didn’t stress about things and the people we really spend time with are the ones who joined us.  It was prefect.

TV Watching

I made her a pettiskirt which of course she doesn’t like to wear.


That’s okay because it’s big enough so she can wear it for many more years.  How do I know?  Well, it’s a secret that I promised not to tell, but big brothers 5 & 7 loved trying it on and twirling around and around and around.  (It really fits Eddie perfectly, but you don’t know that okay?)

My Kids

So happy birthday to my little princess who loves to watch Pocahontas & Ariel in my bed with her kiki and blanky, loves toast with jam, and adores her brothers.  We love you!

June 2009

Oh Ottobre

G and I have been freakin’ out over this design mag.  There’s so much packed into each one.  From the patterns (usually 30 or so), to the many photo examples and sewing tips.  We have fallen in love with these Finnish folk.

Ottobre Bermudas

While up at the Sewing & Stitchery Expo back in March, I thought I got suckered into spending $70 for a magazine subscription that I wasn’t sure I would even like. I had been thinking about a subscription to a sewing magazine for some time, but I was never sure which one to spend the dough on.  They are spendy!


Turns out this was the best money I’ve spent in a long time!  I did order both the womens and kids which is why it was so much, but I don’t regret it ONE BIT.  I ordered my subscription from here while up at the Expo, and I’m very pleased how fast I received my first one.  Now, with that said, I can’t guarentee the same for you if you decide.  G ordered hers three weeks ago and still has not received her first magazine yet. (I’ve already received this seasons’.)  She’s been borrowing mine for the time being and has studied it down to the children’s eye shape.  (Sorry G, had to sneak that in!)  You could also order it directly from the Ottobre site.

Front pockets

So the shorts were made from the latest Summer ’09 magazine.  They are “Bermudas” and Eddie picked out the fabric which was on sale for super cheap. The bad part is that a lot of the great detail which drew me to this pattern is lost due to all the darn patchwork.

Front and Back

I love the mock fly which makes these look a little less homemade than the usual ones I make.  I also like all the pockets.  I did not like sewing the elastic in place instead of a casing.  It was really hard to stretch and sew, but I think that may have been due to the elastic I was using- some thrift store find. Yuck. The pattern calls for belt loops and also a tie, but I opted out.  These took me way too long to sew as it was with 4 pockets per pair, mock fly and all the topstitching.

Now that I’ve got the pattern for each boy traced and cut out with my adjustments, another pair should be alot faster to whip out.  Hopefully with fabric that’s not so busy next time!


My little Eddie-Freddie is 5. Five is a big birthday isn’t it?  They are a whole hand.

Pucker Up

Eddie is everyone’s favorite.  He loves Pokemon and mazes (pronounced “ahmazes”).   He has a crazy pine cone collection and idolizes Augie.  “O-yivia” is his best “yittle” sister and he is definitely Nana’s toko.

I'm Workin'

After days of thought, meatballs and couscous was chosen for his birthday dinner.  My cinnamon rolls were requested instead of cake.

Little Man

I dread his meltdowns, miss his kiki face, love our afternoon naps, and look forward to watching him begin school.  Happy 5th Birthday Eddie.  We yuv you!


August turned 7 yesterday.

Razor Clamming

I can feel him pulling away more.  Not in a bad way.  In a good way.


He’s finding things by himself.  Testing it out.  Truly not needing me.

Out on a Jetty

It feels good.  I need to let him do it more often.  Not question so much.  Not push and prod so much.

Bay Clamming

It all hit me last weekend. As we were sitting around in a cabin chatting with friends, Augie asked to go outside… by himself… in the middle of no where… to climb the boulders surrounding the cabin. In the past, he would have been content to share in the conversation, play with the other children or just stay around us. Not anymore. He wanted to explore. To be alone. And it was fine with him.


He loved his party with Grandpa Augie and I think both Augusts had a great time.

August's Birthday

Happy 7th birthday Augie and Happy 90th Grandpa!