Friday, May 1, 2015

This is 40

I'm about a week away from my 40th birthday. I can hardly believe it. I'm looking forward to 40. It's funny because when I was younger, it always seemed so old. But my 30s have given me so much: Self-acceptance. Self-discovery. A love of crafting. Self-love. Growth. Love. Marriage. Motherhood. I can only imagine the blessing the next decade will dish out.

This past year has given me:
  • Marriage. Ted and I will be married a year later this May. What a great journey this year has been! He's a true partner and I'm so very blessed to have him by my side.
  • Motherhood. Chase is over a year old. But so much personal growth has happened as I've learned my mothering style. Obviously, that continues to evolve and I'm looking forward to continuing to learn about myself in the process. 
  • Left my job. I wasn't growing as much as I would have liked in my job and I was honestly not looking forward to the 24/7/365 hours required while taking care of the kiddo. As much as I loved making a difference in student's lives, I'm glad I am taking time off for Chase. 
  • Continued growth in volunteer positions. It's been a big struggle to balance volunteering with the daily ins and outs of Chase's life. Honestly, I was a better volunteer when I was working, as I had little pockets of free time (lunch or the 10 minutes between meetings) to respond to stuff. Now I don't have that anymore and it's hard. Couple that with what sometimes feels like people dumping stuff on the stay at home mom, and it can be a struggle. I think I'm finally getting to a place where I can balance it. 
  • And a million other little moments that have created happy memories....
 I couldn't be in a better place as I bid farewell to my 30s and welcome this new amazing decade.  Bring it 40! 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Monster Time

Woo! I did some sewing during nap time today. And the machine, even though it's right next door to his room, did not wake Chase! Oh it's so good to exercise my creative muscles a little bit.

I finished the shorts for Chase. I used this pattern by Sew Like my Mom. I made a 2T rather than 18 months to ensure they will fit him for a good bit of the summer.  Looking at the completed shorts, I think it was a good move. The pattern was well written and easy to follow. I'd definitely recommend it.
Now, we just need it to get warm enough for him to wear them! 


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Sewing Shorts

I finished the shorts from the previous post.  They came out great.  Honestly, the only thing I'm questioning is if the pompoms were a good idea.  Right on my hips.  Hmm..... I may end up cutting the pompoms off but leaving the purple trim.  Time will tell.  I'm glad I made them though. 
Now, I'm working on a pair of shorts for Chase. Really, it should be the fastest project ever. The only flaw with that is I never have time to sew. My sewing space is right next to his bedroom so I don't even sew when he's sleeping. The good news is my mom is coming to visit soon so I might be able to squeak some sewing time out while she's here. I have fabric for a dress for me so I'd love to start on that too! 
The weather has been so nice lately. We've been trying to take more walks to really take advantage of it.  Chase is so much happier when he gets outside time every day. And I've been trying to increase my physical activity (and step count. Hello Fitbit!) so it's a win win. After we took a long walk today, we played in the yard for a bit. Walk to the front, walk to the back. Fall down a few times in there. I adore watching him explore and learn about the world around him.
My life is amazing. I'm so blessed. Yes, it can be hard but I'm so very grateful for it all. 



Monday, April 20, 2015

Pom Poms!

Yesterday morning, I managed to steal away and do a little bit of selfish sewing.  I had leftover fabric from other projects and wanted to make myself a pair of slip-on shorts. The pieces were already cut out so there was only sewing to do. 
Since I didn't have enough yardage for them to be only one fabric, the front is a linen floral print and the pockets and back are chambray. The waistband is not attached yet in this photo. And I need time to hem the bottom as well as shop for and lace elastic through the waistband. I'm hoping I'll have time in the next week to do so! I am looking forward to seeing how they come out.  I love a good sewing project. And selfish sewing is such a delightful little luxury!


Saturday, April 18, 2015

Groundhog's Day

Sometimes it feels as though my life is Groundhog's Day.  The movie, not February 2nd. Wake up, give the kiddo a bottle, catch a little GMA before breakfast, play until nap time, grab a shower (finally!) after putting Chase down, lunch time when he wakes up, errands, play, dinner, then bedtime. New day, same routine. I look forward to the weekends for a little break from the routine. The chance to spend more time with Ted and maybe be wild and crazy and make a trip to Target by myself.

Don't get me wrong.  I LOVE being Chase's mom. I love watching his development. He learns something every day. He takes everything in. He's fascinated and fascinating. I waiting a long time to be a mom. In some ways, he completed me.  I was a mom without a kid for a long time. And then I miscarried. And then we had Chase. Oh goodness, I'm so very lucky.

This week I'm a Scout widow. Ted's off at a scout thing today. Tomorrow, he's gone for a family thing. And then scout things after work Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. I feel like I just can't have a moment to myself. It's really hard sometimes. And sometimes, it feels like I can't possibly have another day of the same. I'm so looking forward to warmer weather so we can get out more. And I think we need to get out earlier in the day, even if it's just a walk up to Wawa.

And oh how I long for a craft workshop not directly next to Chase's room. The only time I have to sew is when Ted is home. I can't sew during nap time as the machine is too loud when I'm right next to the boy's room. I feel so limited. I'm grateful for the few projects I've created lately: two paintings and a door decoration for our house. I needed to channel my creative energy and oh, it felt so good! 

I know I'm blessed: great husband, awesome and healthy little boy, sweet dog, good house, fabulous family..... I could go on and on. And I will find ways to explore escaping this darn movie! 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Mmmmm Pie!

Well, I finally had a chance to cut into the faux fur. I sewed a vest using this tutorial and a fleece vest I have as a template. I'm actually really happy with how it turned out. I wasn't completely sure at until I was able to try it on. I styled with some maroon jeans, a plaid flannel shirt, and riding boots. 
 I haven't worn it yet because it's been too cold lately. I've been living in sweaters and sweatshirts lately. Hopefully soon it will get a bit warmer. Fingers crossed!

I have a half yard yesterday. A friend suggested making a matching vest for The Boy with a hood and ears. I love the idea but after thinking about it, I think the fabric sheds too much. I don't need him eating fuzz. He already eats everything he can stick in his mouth! So I think the spare fabric will make an excellent cowl for me. 
I also baked an apple pie this weekend. It's Ted's favorite and it was Valentine's Day so I figured why not. I used this recipe, which is truly awesome and delicious. I did not make the crust however; Pillsbury makes a pretty great one and I'm just a hint lazy. I even made a crust top hat for the top of it, as it was President's Day. Ted ate Lincoln's hat already though! 
 Other than that, I've just been busy with the volunteering I do for my sorority and for NGLA. There is a lot going on right now and The Boy is not too keen on me doing it during the day when he's awake. Honestly, it is a little overwhelming, after being with him all day, to sit down at night and work. But it keeps my hand in the field and gives me good experience. Hopefully it will quiet down a bit soon.

Oh, and I've been planning a first birthday party for The Boy!!  Talk about fun! More details soon.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Vest with the Fur?

I went to JoAnn's yesterday to buy some fabric for a few infinity scarves I planned to make.  Wow, that place was hopping with people doing inventory!!  After navigating the aisles with a stroller and all these people, I found couple of great patterns.  And then I stumbled across some faux fur (more fluffy than fur-like) fabric.  I bought it, thinking I'd make an infinity scarf for me too.  But now I'm thinking I might finally fashion a little vest for myself.  I just need to hunt through the stash to see if I have a good lining fabric.  Fingers crossed this works out because that fabric turned out to cost more than I anticipated when I had it cut!
The Boy has been doing more and more independent standing. I think it's really just a short amount of time until walking happens! And then I'm in trouble. He's doing so good though. He's interested in eating everything. And seems to like everything. He is exploring. He climbed up the entire staircase (with supervision). I just love his desire to learn and his energy. It's amazing! 

I'm in planning mode for his birthday now.  I can't believe it's a little more than a month away! We're going to do a little event and I've slowly been gathering everything. Today, I bought all of the plates, cups, silverware, and a birthday banner at the Dollar Store.  Oh, how I love a bargain. And, oh how I love party planning!  Now, to figure out the menu.

What have you been up to?



Wednesday, February 4, 2015

I Heart You

I was approached by a healthcare site about sharing a heart health fact on their site for February.  Heart health is a cause close to my heart so I had to say yes.  It hasn't been posted yet but I thought it would be valuable to share my story here. 

My father had a fatal heart attack when he was 44.  I was 14 years old.  The night before he died, he had shoulder and arm pain. He ignored it. He was an early riser. When we woke up that morning, he had already been up for a bit.  He was out in his car because we had out of town guests staying with us.  My mom went out to check on him and found him dead. Heart disease ran in the family.  His father passed away at 42.  My dad also was a smoker for many years. So although his cholesterol was good, he had a number of risk factors. And I never got to have my dad watch me go to prom, graduate, get married, or have a baby. 

In my late 20s, I had a sore shoulder that gave me pause.  After talking to my doctor, they ended up ordering a stress test. It turned out that there was nothing wrong with my heart.  But I got peace of mind after being tested. 

Heart health is something we need to take seriously.  Do you know the signs of a heart attack in women?  What are you doing to make your heart healthier? 

I know there are a number of things I could improve but my household's diet has improved greatly over last year.  We're cooking more (yay for having a kitchen again!) and I'm trying to offer a number of low fat, healthy options.  And I've gotten my husband to eat vegetables more often!  I've also managed to eliminate some stress from my life and am practicing yoga more regularly. 

I hope this February you find one new healthy habit to improve your heart health. My goal is to add more walking to my daily routine.  And if you have any of the symptoms of a heart attack, please get checked out!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Trip to Buffalo

Last weekend, the family took a little road trip to Buffalo.  It was my mom's birthday - a big one!  Luckily, we were able to celebrate with her and with a lot of family members. About 25 people - my mom's siblings and their kids and my stepfamily - joined us to recognize the amazingness of my mom.  Ted and I put together a little potluck lunch. We did roast beef, crazy good cake, and pop/beer.  People brought salads, brownies, stuffed shells and other deliciousness.  Oh, how glad I am that we were able to be there! 

The boy was a great traveler. It's about a 7 hour drive from here. He's been on 3 trips to Buffalo already in his 10 months of life. He is pretty content hanging out in the car seat. I really hope he remains a good traveler as time goes on!  I think we're setting him up to be a good one. 
Stopped for lunch at a little diner in NYS.
 Ted did all of the driving.  (Oh, I'm blessed!) So, I got some quality knitting time while we were in the car.  I haven't knit in so long so I started small.  I just made a loosely knit hat - knit one, purl two - out of some black yarn I had in my stash.  I like that it is loose enough that I don't have to worry about my hair denting (happens way too easily people!) and I can wear it over a ponytail if needed. 

I forgot how much I like knitting.  It was good to work the needles and make something!!  Now to find another project to cast on with the yarn already in my stash. 
Modeling my new hat from the backseat of the car!
And, as always with trips, it was good to get home again.  We got back on Sunday and had Monday to just relax as a family.  I'm so blessed to have these amazing human in my life! 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Nurture

I've been thinking a lot about the word for 2015.  I even thought about not doing it.  But 2014's word was just right.  It was a year of Possibility.  Lots of good happened.  I definitely changed and evolved.  I became a mother.  I became a wife.  I left my job.  We got a completely new kitchen and bathroom.  I let the possibility of goodness overtake any possible anxiety I could have about so much change.  And so I think another word is a good thing! 
They follow me everywhere.  I must be totally awesome.
I thought about it for a while. I finally settled on Nurture. There is the obvious kinds - my kid, my dog, my marriage. Those are very important. But my goals include nurturing my creative side - sewing, knitting, and general crafting. Nurturing what I do to keep myself professionally engaged.  Nurture the friendships I value so. Nurture my soul by embracing my faith. So nurture it is.  It starts today.