Big Sister Quilt

When Jaclyn received a quilt at mom's baby shower, Leanne asked, "but what about me??"
So up to grandma's stash we went, where Leanne picked out a Frozen panel featuring sisters Ana and Elsa and a super-bright, super-fun jungle print by Laurel Birch (one of my favorite fabric artists).
Then we set back to wait . . . and wait . . . and wait some more until Jaclyn Rose decided it was time to be born. Leanne didn't know that I'd been working on the quilt and, thanks to a pal who did a rush long-arm quilting job for me, finished it with a couple of days to spare.
Pop and I gave the quilt to Leanne just as she was leaving for the hospital to meet her sister for the first time. I think she liked it. 
Want to know why Leanne picked this fabric for the backing? She plans to use it to teach Jaclyn her animals. Isn't that sweet???  

Note: original size 61 x 48". After washing/drying, size is 58.25 x 47.5 ".


Yard Work

Hubby and I are not big fans of yard work. That, combined with the on-going drought, has led hubby to some design enhancements for our front yard.

Before (but after we pulled all the old plants out):


 Love the brickwork and really love the no low-maintenance.
We still have plenty of flowers
for us, the hummingbirds and the bees.
Giant hibiscus.
Stephanotis that was originally in my mother's yard. My sister saved it, then passed it on to me when she became yard-less. The original vine is 28 years old and still thriving. 


New Baby Grand

This is Jaclyn Rose, born June 28, at 5:00 pm, weighing 6 pounds, 7 ounces and 19.25" long.

Isn't she a cutie?

Mom, dad, baby and big sister, Leanne, are doing great.



TV Time

I found a fun project for the little girls on Pinterest and immediately set about making it talking hubby into making it.

When the perfect box arrived from Amazon a day later, hubby cut a "screen", built a shelf and asked the girls to decorate the front of their new TV with buttons and dials.
"Hello, I'm Leia, with today's LPS* News"

Marie takes it from there: "Signs that you are getting old. My parents found a project for Leia and Leanne to have fun with, making a TV out of a box that they can perform out of. Well dad tells them to draw dials and buttons on it. Leia immediately asks what a dial is. I was dying of laughter, poor dad."
Bonus: Leia now knows what a dial is!
Bigger bonus: This is the first thing they head for when they walk in the door. Hooray!

* LPS = Littlest Pet Shop, Leia's most favorite toy ever.


Date Day

One thing I love about date day is that hubby only takes me to the very nicest places. 
Like looking at antique doors??
The cat mascot looked very comfortable, sound asleep in a box full of lumpy, bumpy glass doorknobs.

Actually, I really do love trips like this. We're both big fans of the TV show Black Dawg Salvage so when hubby spotted the website for Pasadena Architectural Salvage, a road trip was inevitable. And that something would follow us home was also inevitable*. 
And the next time we go? Pretty sure this kitchen door - or something very like it - is coming home too. 

* According to the tag, the solid oak Arts & Crafts-style doors in the top picture, complete with the original beveled glass, come from a house built in May 1951. And they will soon be the doors to our bedroom.


Official Princess Jewels

Leia and Leanne take turns wearing the Official Princess Jewels, a diamond (um, rhinestone) necklace and bracelet I picked up at a high-end jewelry store (um, boot sale) in England. £1 each and worth every pence.

Doesn't Leanne look regally pleased with herself?


Pumpkin Princess Graduation

The Pumpkin Princess graduated from preschool Wednesday, 

with all the pomp and circumstance you can imagine.
There was marching;
singing and
balloons (with more dancing)
and proud parents galore. 
Kindergarten, here we come!


Summer Time, Zoo Time

Both girls are out of school for the summer and the plan is for them to spend *lots* of time at grandma's and papa's house. Yay!
One of our favorite things to do with them is visit the Santa Barbara zoo. 
 From bottom to top: Audrey, Michael and baby Sunshine. Normally only Michael gets fed, since he's the boss, but this time Leanne got to give lettuce to Audrey instead.

There's lots to look at;
lots to do; 
and lots of exercise to tire out little energy machines.  
Today's new thing was the climbing wall.
I tried to talk the girls out of it but they insisted this was their heart's greatest desire. As in "I'd rather climb the wall than have a toy - no, really!"*
Leanne went up several times, but only as high as I could support her with my hand on her b*tt.
Leia did really great. Until she got up so high she scared herself. She froze and one of the helpers had to go up and bring her down.
I'm pretty sure Leia won't do the wall again . . . . but I wouldn't bet on it. Wouldn't surprise me at all if she tries to talk us into it again next time we visit. 

 * Yeah, right. They each got a toy too. Grandma's a soft touch. 


Learning to Sew

Both grandgirls are fascinated by my sewing machines. 

Leia has made practice stitches on fabric before, so yesterday I asked it she'd like to make a little blanket for her dolls. She said no, but she'd really like to make them a pillow. We can do that!
I found a couple of quilt blocks in a scrap bag, showed her how to pin them together and stitch (in theory) a straight 1/4" seam. Not so straight, and not so 1/4", but she's beyond excited. And like every good artist, she was proud to sign her work.
Today Leia and Leanne took turns sewing - 
swapping places every 7 minutes, with both watching the clock like little hawks. 
Leia worked on decorative stitch patterns that she later cut into a boot (flag??) shape.  I thought it was going to be a blanket/rug for her toys but she says it's a toy for her baby brother.
Leanne made a "sheriff" (aka a bandana) 
and some triangle stitch patterns. Notice the ballet pose above, with her right leg out? I don't think she realized she was doing it. She does love her ballet classes! 
Leia has expressed interest in making a quilt - (Me: Would you like an Elsa/Anna quilt? Leia: No thanks, I'm too old for that now. I want one with flowers.) - so I think that's going to be our summer project. Fabric shopping, here we come!