This last weekend was warm and wonderful. My favorite flowers  
were in bloom - 
and pretty girls went about in sleeveless dresses. 
Today I'm glad to have my hand-crocheted socks and Ugg boots. Brrrr!



Rapunzel hair was the treat Leia picked out for herself on our last visit to Disneyland. She wore it a few times and then it somehow got put away where she couldn't find it.     

Well, guess what showed up last night?
And guess who couldn't get enough of swinging her head and primping her hair? 
I love how happy this made her 
and how adorable she looks with her (very realistic and natural) long blonde tresses.


It's My Party

Look who's turning 11!  
The big day is actually February 28 but Naia has been celebrating all weekend. Tonight was our turn to party with the pre-teen. She got her own pizza - 
lots of presents - modeling clay, Angry Birds game, a dragon pocket watch necklace (big hit!) -
and a fancy (and very delicious) chocolate mousse cupcake 
that she proceeded to thoroughly

without having to share with her sister
or her cousin (who each got their own cow cookie as a consolation prize.)
All in all, a very successful celebration. Happy birthday, sweet Naia! 


More Quilting

I may have to change this from a crochet and grand-girls blog to a quilting and grand-babies blog, especially since I love posting pix of My Boy Travis.
Crochet is still happening but quilting is where my energies - and heart - are right now.

Remember the black and white quilt top I made for Breanne and Garrett for Christmas? I finally got the backing put together and mailed it off to a long arm quilter in Oklahoma. Less than a week later, it was back and I think it looks fabulous. 
I opted for the 4-ounce polyester batting this time; hubby wants a 'thicker' quilt when I make his and I wanted to see what difference there was from the cotton batting I prefer.
After a quick wash and dry, the batting puffed up nicely - much more so than  cotton - giving this a lumpy, bumpy affect. I still prefer my cotton, but hubby says this is closer to what he wants.
Hope Bre's family gets years of use from this!   


The Story of a Quilt

So, I completed Leanne's quilt top on the 13th, and all I had to do before her birthday party on the 19th was finishing. I always underestimate how long it will take - and how much is involved - in the final details of almost every project, but I'm still new enough to quilting to seriously underestimate. Let's walk through it . . .

First you sew the backing pieces together, lay the whole thing out on a large, flat surface
and tape it down with assistance from a handy helper. 
Next is layering the batting and the quilt top, which is best done without said helper. (She was indignant at being excluded too.) 
Then you pin (and pin and pin) the layers together, 
trim off the excess batting and roll it into a tidy package - using a new little helper, if you can't get rid of her available. 
Next comes the quilting. This was my first time 'stippling' a quilt and it was intimidating. I started out doing very careful rows but gradually loosened up - and sped up - doing free motion doodles.
There are a couple of spots I wish I could do-over, but for the most part I like how this turned out. 

Then the final steps - trimming it up, sewing the binding to the quilt top and hand-stitching it down around the back.
Three.Full.Hours. just for the hand-stitching. Didn't think I'd ever get done. (Finished at 3 a.m. Reminded me of Christmas Eves when the kids were little.) 
A quick trip through the washer and dryer,
then a short photo shoot the next morning - with yet another helper - before it was wrapped up and tied with a bow.
Was it all worth it? H*ll yes! By happenstance, the quilt was the last gift opened at the birthday party.
Leanne grabbed it out of her mom's hands and refused to let go of it the rest of the afternoon. 
I thought she would like it; it's pink and princess, after all. But I was surprised - and thrilled - at how much she LOVED it. 
I see lots more hand-mades in that little girl's future.         


Best Grandpa

PopPop, watching the same Disney video with Leia for the 8,397,000th time.Now that's love. And one of those times when being hard-of-hearing is a good thing.


Remnant Heaven

Here's the reason I buy remnants (besides the fact that they're usually 70-75% off and I love a bargain)
Got the bug to make this tonight around 8. Used only fabric I already had in the house and finished at 11. Not bad for a beginning quilter, heh? Of course, it helps to have a cheater panel as a starting point (I got it on sale in Colorado last year.) But still. 41" x 51" quilt top in 3 hours. I'm calling that a win. I already have the batting and backing fabric too. Love a "no cost" project!
Cat provided for scale. And because I couldn't get her to MOVE.

And I finally finished the first quilt I started waaaaaay back in September.
I've been hand sewing the binding since around Christmas and took the last stitch last night.
It's been washed, dried and declared an official couch blanket. Soooo happy with it. 


Miss Creativity

The definition of 'creativity', 3-year-old style -
When Leia wanted to dress herself, the only requirements I gave her were something with sleeves and something on her legs. She started with the pink tutu and worked it from there.
Can't decide whether to applaud her or be very glad we aren't going out anywhere today. 
Maybe both?   



Lily Kitty loves to keep me company at night when the little girls are in bed.
If I'm working on something, she'll park herself as close to me as she can get, batting Leia's dolls off chairs she wants to occupy or stealing my seat if I get up for even a second.
She had a slightly easier job of it last night, curling up on an in-progress quilt right behind my sewing machine. Talk about a cushy life. 


More Travis

I'm working on a super secret project (or two) since Rachel's somebody's birthday is just around the corner. So rather than spill the beans, how about more Travis pictures?
He's about 6-weeks now and just keeps getting cuter. 
My favorite picture is the one on the 2nd row, left - such attitude! (You can click the collage to make it bigger.)  


Cousins and Buds

Dear Addy, I miss you. I want to come to your house. 
Love, Leia*

Dear Leia, I miss you too. Maybe I can come to your house and we can go to Disneyland.
Love, Addy

*They've been practicing these faces - and we've been texting them back and forth - since our August visit to Colorado.Getting pretty good, aren't they?
And hasn't Addy gotten big? She's almost all grown up already! But you're never too big for monster earmuffs . . .