Stash Report – April 18, 2016

I just finished the Hungry Caterpillar quilt I have been working on for a couple of months, so I’m happy to show some progress on my numbers! Unfortunately I also hit the remnants bin pretty hard this week, so not as much as I was hoping!

Used this Week: 7.875 yards

Used year to Date: 36.335 yards

Added this Week: 5.807 yards

Added Year to Date: 21.187 yards

Net for 2015: 15.148 yards used

Thanks for stopping by!

Design Wall Monday March 21, 2016

I think I mentioned here during one of my stash reports that I bought a quilt kit for A Very Hungry Caterpillar quilt. I meant it as a gift to a friend having a baby. Well her baby shower is coming up and thankfully I got the quilt top finished up last night. 

  
This was my first time making a quilt from a kit and I really liked it.  I bought it from FatQuarterShop.com. I had some trouble with the flying geese units but I managed to fix them and I’m glad I did. It made piecing the top together so much easier. 

Now all that is left on this quilt is piecing together the back, quilting & binding. Luckily I already have the binding cut & ready to go. The kit came with an extra panel. The caterpillar panel went on the front and I’m going to use the bonus butterfly panel for the back along with the scraps I have left from the front. 

I’m linking up with Patchwork Times

Quilt Finish – Beach Ball Baby Quilt

I’ve finished the Beach Ball Baby Quilt!

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It’s a free pattern from the Moda Bake Shop.
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I bought 2 “rolie polie” rolls (I guess they are mini jelly rolls) of Lucky Star by Zoe Pearn Designs for Riley Blake Designs to make the quilt:

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The white background, binding and backing were all from my stash. I used some leftover beach ball pieces to piece a portion of the backing as well. I could have added another row and made the quilt a little bigger, but the sizes on these pieces were off. If you make this quilt, I highly recommend buying a 60 degree triangle ruler. I just used the 60 degree marker on my cutting ruler and it wasn’t quite as accurate so I had a little trouble piecing.

Of course, I had to include a picture of a baby using the baby quilt!

Of course, I had to include a picture of a baby using the baby quilt!

The quilting was a free motion stipple using blue variegated thread on top and white on bottom. If I had to do it over again I probably would not do the blue thread and would have stuck to white for the top, too. I think the blue is just a little distracting. The finished size is 48″x45″.

Thanks for stopping by! I’m linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish it up Friday.

2015 Quilt Finishes

Another busy year for me! My husband was undergoing cancer treatment again and I was expecting and then delivered our first child, a baby boy, so not much time for quilting! Plus, I took on a very challenging quilt, the Leaves & Berries Quilt, that took me a few months to finish 🙂

Superhero Quilt, completed in January 2015 for my sister-in-law and her new son:

Leaves & Berries Quilt, completed in August 2015 for my aunt and uncle:

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hi[bear]nate quilt for henry, completed September 2015:

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Sunburst Quilt, completed September 2015:

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Design Wall Feb 8, 2016

A couple weeks ago I got an invitation to a friend’s baby shower. I figured it was coming up soon and I already had the fabric and the pattern I wanted to use, so now it was time to make the quilt.

My son 4 months old so it’s been a challenge to find time to work on the quilt, especially with my husband being sick again. Thankfully my mother and mother in law have been gracious enough to come over and watch the baby while I work. Here’s what’s on my design wall this week:

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Beach Ball Baby Quilt from the Moda Bake Shop. Here’s the front of the quilt.

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Some extra beach balls I’m going to use for the backing.

I’m linking up with Judy over at Patchwork Times today.

Stash Report week 14 – 2015

Stash Report – 2015 Week14
No finishes this week and I have made no progress with my Meet in the Middle Quilt. Having an 8 week old makes quilting kind of difficult. I did buy some fabric this week for baby quilts. One is a quilt kit from FatQuarterShop.com for a Very Hungry caterpillar quilt, and two “Rolie Polie” pre-cuts. Can’t wait! 
Week 14

Used this Week: 0 yards

Used year to Date: 22.46 yards

Added this Week: 10.38 yards

Added Year to Date: 15.38 yards

Net for 2015: 17.46 yards used
Thanks for stopping by! I’m linking up with Judy over at Patchwork Times.

Cloth Diapering: Initial Thoughts

My friends made fun of me when I first became pregnant because I had lots of ideas for how I wanted to raise my son and how I wanted to run my household once he arrived. Mainly, I did NOT want to use disposable diapers or disposable baby wipes. First of all, disposable diapers are so expensive! The prospect of spending $100+/month just on diapers was just not in our budget, so I wanted to find a way to save money on that. Secondly, they are so bad for the environment! They are not biodegradable and I don’t even want to think about how much human waste is seeping into the ground water from landfills. My friends teased me that I wouldn’t stick with the cloth diapers once I found out how hard they are to use. I still wanted to give it a try.

I was inspired to consider cloth diapers by John & Sherry Petersik of Young House Love. I appreciated how they broke down their cloth diapering experience and from what they described, it just didn’t seem that hard. I also talked to my parents and their generation about cloth diapers. I didn’t know it, but my parents didn’t use disposable diapers with any of my 3 siblings or I — they just couldn’t afford them. Same with my husband’s parents. Turns out, disposable diapering is a fairly recent phenomena. I figured, people have been cloth diapering for thousands of years so I could probably do it, too. We ended up buying the same Bum Genius Elemental One Size All In Ones the Petersiks use, but they are a little too big for our newborn Henry at the moment.

So, my wonderful and generous mother gifted us 6 weeks of a cloth diapering service for the first weeks of Henry’s life. This way we wouldn’t have to invest in newborn cloth diapers for just a short period of time. The diaper service goes more of the traditional cloth diaper route; that is, the cloth diaper with the “rubber pants” over them — today they’re referred to as diaper covers. I almost wish we went this route for our cloth diaper investment instead of the all-in-ones. They’re so easy to use; even my husband, who is a complete diaper novice, has no problems at all changing baby’s diaper.

I can definitely see why some people might prefer disposable diapers. We used disposable for the first two weeks of Henry’s life until we got the diaper service set up. It’s nice to just pull out a diaper, slap it on the baby and throw the old one away. They’re also a lot more compact than cloth so you can bring a lot more with you when you’re out and about with baby. But the cloth diapers aren’t that much more complicated to use than disposable and I find that I need to do a lot more laundry these days anyway, so throwing some diapers in the wash isn’t a lot more effort when I’m already doing laundry. Also, since I am a stay-at-home-mom for the moment (I have no plans to get a job anytime soon, but you never know about life) cloth diapering isn’t a big drain on my time. I can see how a house with both parents working away from home might not be able to cloth diaper, and I don’t even know if daycare centers would use cloth diapers. But for me and my family, it makes sense.

Another thing I decided on for baby was using cloth wipes. Again; I hated the thought of spending money on wipes and sending so much waste into landfills. Since I am handy with a sewing machine anyway and I had plenty of flannel fabric on hand, I went ahead and made a bunch of cloth wipes myself. All I have to do is spray a soap solution I made using Dr. Bronner’s soap on to baby’s bottom, then wipe away the waste. When I’m done with the wipe, I throw it into the wet bag hanging next to the changing table. I usually only need one wipe per diaper change. Once we start using our own cloth diapers they will also go into the wet bag, but right now we have a separate wet bag for the laundry service to pick up. And if you’re wondering about the poop smell, it’s not terribly noticeable (at least, not to me). I won’t go as far as saying that breastmilk poo doesn’t smell like some people claim, but it’s not a terribly pungent or overwhelming smell.

You may be saying, this is all well and good for when you’re at home, but what about when you’re on the go? It’s pretty much the same idea. I have a smaller wet bag I use for my diaper bag, so when I change the cloth diaper, I just throw the soiled diaper in there and then transfer to the big bag for laundry when I get home. I do stock my diaper bag with disposable wipes. I also have some disposable diapers in my diaper bag just in case we run out of cloth.

Anyway, these are my initial thoughts about cloth diapering after our first week of use. I’m sure things will change once we have to wash the diapers ourselves but for now, we’re really happy with our decision to cloth diaper.

Introducing: Henry Job

As you might have guessed, I fell off the face of the earth these past few weeks because my baby boy finally decided to make his entrance into the world!

Mama and Henry's first picture together

Mama and Henry’s first picture together

I went into labor at 3AM on October 13, 2015 when my water broke at home. It was just a trickle but I started having contractions so I figured we had better head to the hospital. When the nurse wheeled me into triage she asked me to get out of the wheelchair and change into a hospital gown so she could assess if I was really in labor or not. When I stood up, the trickle became a waterfall, lol! So they went ahead and decided I was in labor and assigned me to a labor and delivery room. 18.5 hours later, my son was born into the world.

Daddy and Henry

Daddy and Henry

Henry Job was born at 9:26PM on October 13, 2015 weighing 8lbs 13.5oz and measuring 22in long. So far he’s been a really great little baby, he hardly fusses (except during the “witching hour,” usually about 5PM-11PM each day) and sleeps really well as a general rule. He lost quite a bit of weight before leaving the hospital, but he’s been steadily gaining weight since then and now weighs over 9lbs.

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I’m really loving being a mom and learning my little guy’s personality. He makes so many funny faces when he wakes up. He’s only 3 weeks old as of today but it feels like it’s been months since he was born. Yesterday we made our first solo trip to the supermarket and it went real well, he slept through the whole thing. I’m still learning our new routine but it gets easier every day. And of course since I’m a new mom, I have tons of pictures of my baby, so enjoy!

The Big Reader

Another one of my hobbies is reading. I actually graduated from university with a BA in English, my focus was Victorian Literature. If you know anything about Victorian Literature, you know they liked to drone on and on and on, most of the books were very long and we were reading them at a pretty quick clip so I got to be a fairly fast reader. Depending on the book, it’s not unusual for me to finish a 100-150 page ebook in an evening. It makes me kind of laugh to look at my most current list of books read, given my background. I don’t read a whole lot of “literature” these days, I enjoy mysteries, romances, Young Adult novels, etc. Feel free to follow me on GoodReads to find out what I’m reading.

challenge Every year, GoodReads lets you pick a number of books you’d like to finish by the end of the year to “challenge” yourself. The last time I successfully completed a challenge was in 2011, my goal was 50 books and I read 60. My goal for this year is 50 and so far I’ve read 38 books, which apparently means I’m on track. I’m sure I’ll go off the rails again once the baby arrives.

This past week I took a break from quilting and read some books. I love reading on my ereader, a 1st edition Nook by Barnes and Noble. I believe my husband bought it for me for Christmas the year it came out. I love the e-ink technology, there is no backlighting at all which makes my eyes stressed and tired (and twitchy, I hate that!) This week I read 4 romances, a mystery and a finished a horror/thriller that I started a while ago. You can check out all of the books I’ve read this year here.

Usually when I’ve read a lot of light, fluffy books I try to buckle down and read a “serious” book so I’m not completely embarrassed by my reading list, lol. I read Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov earlier this year for that reason and absolutely hated it.

9810317Now I’ve decided to read Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell. I haven’t spent much time with American literature and this was gifted to me earlier this year so I thought I’d give it a try. Most people probably wouldn’t consider this a “serious” read but it is considered an American classic anyway. It’s tremendously long so hopefully I can get through it!