defining a good day.

Like most moms and wives I am sure,
I lie awake at the end of every day evaluating
how I think I did in both of those categories and more...
Did I do good?
How could I have done better?

If I had good design skills I would list all of my "requirements of a good day" in some pretty way...and frame them to hang somewhere in my house...where I could think about them before I went to bed.

They are kind of like my "how to" to be a good mom (and wife)...things like:

Did I hug them?
Did I kiss them?

Did I tell them that I love them?
Did we talk about Jesus?

Did we pray together?
Did we PLAY together?

Did I give them undivided attention?
Did I do something special for them?

Did I feed them?
Did we laugh together?

Did I console them?
Did we share a secret?

Did I encourage good habits?
Did I help them feel valued?

Did I show them something new?
Did we talk about the day?

Did I take care of some need?
Did I take CARE of them?

Did I make them feel precious?
Did I make them feel loved?

Did we make a good memory?
Did we read together?


Among so many I am sure...

I'd love to know...
what is on YOUR "how-to" list?




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cause i love them.

Moses from birth to one...
From one to two...
From two to three.
It just amazes me at how much he has changed in three short years.
For these collages...I generally try to pick a couple or so of my favorites from each month of the year and try to choose photos that show his personality or some characteristic of him that we don't want to forget. :)

As I look at these...and all the wonderful fall stuff going on around us I have been aware that it didn't have to be this way...the Earth never HAD to be this beautiful...but He did it because He could...because He delights in us...delights in us delighting in what He has done...

Just looking around at all the beauty of fall, I can't help but think...

Blessed be His glorious name forever; And may the whole earth be filled with His glory.
Psalm 72:19

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the last detail.

The final detail of the robot party...the thank you.
This year we upped Moses' involvement in his thank you's...
I drew out a simple, fill in the blank note...then photo copied it.
Moses job was to color each of them...and I think he did quite great.
Then he sat with me as we filled them in together.
I love the added extra of showing his coloring progress. :)
This way of doing thank yous will (hopefully) help him to know the importance of showing gratitude and to get in the habit of sending thank yous.
Then every year I do a collage to include in the family thank you cards. This one is obviously from two to three...I do a large print for us to hang and I LOVE LOVE to look at them hanging on the wall together. It is SO fun to see how he changed from birth to one, from one to two and now from two to three.

It's a great way to send photos without send a million of them...you can make them at kodak.com or other places I am sure.

Like it or not, I plan to do them until at least 18. :)

:)
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let me just tell you.

You see this baby here?
You think he is 100% cute and sweet and cuddly...and all things baby right?
And really, you would be right. Because he is.
BUT he also has more attitude than ANY baby I have had the blessing to know...
This face...this face is JUST the beginning.
He is not crying here.
Merely sharing his annoyance with you...this is his "I'm warning you" face.
Then it gets real ugly.
He makes this face at us SO much that we have given it a name....baby stinkface.
You know how sometimes people give you the stinkeye? Well Baby Aaron wants you to know for SURE that he is annoyed with you...so he goes all out and puts his whole face into it.
Yesterday when I was vacuuming he gave me this face the WHOLE time. Even when I was in the other room...I would peek around the corner and sure enough...there was a stinkface waiting for me.
And this is not a rare occurrence. This happens everyday. Often.
He is a happy baby but very eager to show his displeasure with you.
And he is not usually crying when he is doing this...just disgusted.
Attitude.
Here is another phase. The "so mad I am shaking" phase.
You can't tell from the photo but his face is trembling here.
He gets even madder if you giggle about it.
And this photo...
And this photo are his newest tricks.
Here he is screaming while holding his breath.
Yep.
His little face will go red and everything.
And he gives it all he has too.
Then he puts his head down like this...
it's like he is praying for strength to go on putting up with us.
And then the next moment he is happy.
Crazy kid.
In other news...I got some bloomers made. :)
And some new silhouettes of my boys...I was trying to go for something a little different this time...now I just need to figure out how I want to hang them. :)

Happy Friday to you!!!

xo
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i tried it...and i think i liked it.

quilting and binding that is.
This is the mini-quilt from my last quilt making adventure.
My big quilt JUST went out...due to some issues with the original quilter.
I found a NEW QUILTER.
And should have my quilt back in two short weeks.
But for this one...I thought that I should at least TRY to quilt it...and bind it.
And thanks to spray adhesive...I can almost say that it was....easy.
Especially the binding.
Easy.
I will be binding my big quilt when it comes back.
I did a simple quilting job...using the squares as my guide.
These photos are from post wash...hence the crinkly look.
And...it is already headed to the home of one of my super sweet customers.
I hope it warms your lap for always. :)

And I have started on my next one...a baby quilt for my cousin in laws cute baby...

And my sewing conquest today?

Ruffle bum bloomers.
Stay tuned.

xo
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v2. and answered questions.

I made another.
This one is for sale.
AND made from some of the hard to find...
Summer in the City line from Urban Chicks.
It's a size five.
That apron is made from fabric that I have held onto (hoarded) for months.
It seemed perfect for this dress combo.
I think it would still be adorable with a shirt under with some leggings for cold weather...
then all alone in the warmer weather.
A couple of recent questions...I am never sure of the best way to answer them...in the comments? Like this? Hmm...thoughts?

Anywho...
This dress pattern is totally easy. Even if I did change it a bunch...if you didn't change it at all you could totally do it...not a thing complicated about it.
I promise.

How do I bake and stay thin?
Hehe.
Umm...not that thin really but...
Share...a lot. :) Plus I sew a lot...it's hard to stuff my face while I am sewing. :)

Baby Aaron's hat from THIS post is from Baby Gap...but three years ago...it's a hand me down from his brother...I have the most adorable one piece that goes with it...

And someone asked if I use stabilizer for applique...sometimes. If I do it is fusible backing.
Does that help?

AND the winner of the How Fab Giveaway is YOU!

Contact Kara to collect your prize!

:)
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36lbs.

36lbs...that is how many apples it takes to make 11 quarts of applesauce, three apple pies and one jar of apple pie filling.
36lbs, a few hours and a football game later...my freezer is full of all sorts of apple goodness.
If you haven't made applesauce before...you should...it is way easier than you think.
I only learned last fall...this was my first time going at it alone.
You cover the bottom of a stock pot with water...this one is ten quarts...cut your unpeeled, uncored apples into quarters...fill the pot.
This pot filled made four quarts of apple sauce.
Let the apples simmer until they are all mushy...then put them in your Foley Food Mill. I got mine for Christmas last year...it takes out all the peels, seeds and apple junk...then you put the sauce in jars or containers and freeze. You can sweeten with sugar or add cinnamon too.
It is that easy.
And it makes my husband happy.
Bonus.
Simultaneously, I made some pies...that red bowl up there is 18 cups of peeled, cored apples.
I baked one and have two in the freezer.
The best fall dessert...don't you think?

I don't put cheese on my apple pie...this seems wrong to me...do you?

:)
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because i am impatient.

I JUST finished this!!! :)
Literally. I need to clean it up and iron it still.
I mostly followed the pattern...
I admit that I changed it in some areas that made sense to me to change.
Does this still count?
The little apron is made from a tea towel that my mother in law embroidered...she gave me a couple and after ruining one with staining I found that I was afraid to use this one...so I put it on a dress for my little niece...who loves cats.

But I can't decide...should I take out the "Saturday" bit...or leave it there?

:)
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fun. food.

Crazy time warp. how has it been so long?
Why do i have the feeling that it will be Christmas before we know it?
Hmm.
For now...we had MOPS today. :) fun and food. always.
Today was our tables turn to bring breakfast...and i always like to have a treat for the girls at my table...so i made these yummy cake pops.
much easier than you think.
You can find the step by step HERE.
But basically...you bake a cake...mush it up with an almost whole can of frosting...
Shape into ping-pong sized balls...insert a lollipop stick and dip into that candy mold chocolate...then i dipped mine into fall themed sprinkles.
they are actually pretty tasty.
and much easier than i thought they would be.
next...
I made pumpkin pie bars. yum.
If you like pumpkin anything...you will love these...
here is the recipe:

Pumpkin Pie Bars

1-1/3 cups flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) cold butter or margarine
1 cup old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats, uncooked
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
3 eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons bourbon (optional)
a handful of butterscotch or chocolate chips for sprinkling on top (optional)

HEAT oven to 350°F. Line 13×9-inch pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides; grease foil. Mix flour, 1/4 granulated sugar and brown sugar in medium bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and nuts.

RESERVE 1 cup oat mixture; press remaining onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15 min. Beat cream cheese, remaining sugar, eggs, vanilla, bourbon, pumpkin and spice with mixer until well blended. Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture and a handful of butterscotch or chocolate chips (if desired).

BAKE 25 min.; cool 10 min. Use foil to transfer dessert from pan to wire rack; cool completely.

And lastly I made this...streusel, cream cheese coffee cake.
dream in a pie pan. :)
You can go HERE for the recipe.
~*~
Today's MOPS was a great one...
Each table has a mentoring mom...a mom who generally has grown children...
Today was the mentoring moms panel...where we got to asked these more experienced moms questions about whatever we were curious about.
They always have great advice to share...but today made all of us laugh out loud more than once...
One mom shared the following advice..."spend "special time"(edited because my in-laws read this---hi there!) with your husband every three days or so...even if it means saying "honey, just pull my gown down when you're done". :) "
How is that for advice?
:)
And this is me. Holding myself accountable to the hundreds of you who are reading this. :)
Inspired by Julie...I bought this dress pattern. And. I will. Learn. To. Use. A. Pattern.
If it kills me.

So there is that.

:)
Now go make something yummy.
They are all completely fat free and good for you.

xo
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bits.

Busy busy.
As usual.
But.
My to do list is getting knocked out...just not as fast as it is filling up.
But that is OK.
Actually, I think that is preferred.
Some things that have gotten done?
Those little houses up there...tooth fairy huts...a shop favorite...
with a little pocket on the back...will be hitting the shop soon...
Took Moses to a birthday party at a park with the worlds steepest slide.
Guess whose child face planted in cement without batting an eye, as soon as we got there...then couldn't stay away from death slide?
And his outfit? That kid has more cool that I have ever had...in my whole life.
Just saying.
I finally finished his big birthday gift...it's a little fort that fits over a card table.
It's supposed to be simple and no frills.
But.
It was a pain...next time I know how to make it better...and easier on myself. :)
You may remember me mentioning this carrier before...then it was a big WANT.
Now I think it may be a need...Aaron refuses to sit in a shopping cart, stroller, etc.
And though he is only seven months...he is not the size of a seven monther...he hangs out in the high nineties for height and eighties for weight.
This makes the Bjorn nearly impossible and the prospect of carrying nearly numbing.
Do you have this carrier? Do you love it?
It's a little spendy...BUT I feel like it would be worth it...to save a back and free up hands...so...
Go buy a tooth hut....or a pillow...or whatev.
Please. and thanks. :)

hehe.

And the winner of the "It's a Good Day" Giveaway is....

YOU!

Please contact Teresa to claim your prize!

:)
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making an effort.

Sometimes the things you are supposed to do are hard.
Sometimes they are easy.
Parenthood-hard.
Sewing-easy.
Doing the right thing-sometimes hard.
Sewing I have worked and worked at.
Chased, as a matter of fact.
Photography...has followed and followed me.
I have done it for years...weddings, babies, friends.
Never asked for it...it just happens.
Always been easy.
Lately I have been wondering...
what would happened if I chased it?
I LOVE it.
Almost as much as sewing.
I have what I need to start...
Including the support of my husband.
So why not?
Not giving up my day job(s)...but
if you live in the Charlottesville area...
I could make myself available. :)
We could capture some sweet moments together...my email is over on the right.
Let's set something up...it will be fun...I promise.

A special thanks to Aunt Jen for the super cute outfits...
I think the boys will get lots of wear of them. :)

xo
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