Thursday, February 25, 2010

Celebrate the Boy!

With so many cute tutorials on how to make little girl things out there, I've been so excited that this month, one of my favorite blogs to read, MADE, has been posting tutorials on cute things to make for little boys!!! Here are some of my favorites so far...

{picture via omi creates}

I am SO into stripes of late. Stripes on me, stripes for our baby...i just love STRIPES! I must admit I'm a little afraid of working with knit fabric, but I'm determined to try this sweet onesie out!

the 90 min Shirt
from MADE


{image via MADE}

Dana's little boy is just the cutest!!! This is probably going to be the first project I try. I also love how Dana repurposes adult clothing to make stuff for her little ones...I know i've mentioned her before, but if you haven't checked out her blog or her tutorials, and you sew and have little ones...she's a must read!

The Slim Slack
from This Mama Makes Stuff

{image via This Momma Makes Stuff}

Just came across this tutorial this morning, and am seriously in LOVE with the idea of making little skinny pants for our little guy. They just look so cute on these kiddos, and I cannot wait to make a pair! This is the first I've been introduced to This Momma Makes Stuff, and am already in amazement at her skills! Carrie also does a lot of her crafting by repurposing clothing, bedding etc. I definitely plan on browsing her blog and finding more fun things to make for our little buddy.

So many amazing things to make...so little time :)
Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Cloth Diapering...at 4am.

Ah the joys of trying to sleep during the last few weeks of pregnancy...ha. It's 4am and I am WIDE AWAKE! So instead of continuing to toss and turn and keep the hubbers up, I've moved my belly and I out to the living room, propped up on the couch. I must say this is MUCH more comfortable then trying to lay on my side, with my hips and hands throbbing :)

{image via ehow.com}

Since before we even got pregnant, I knew I really wanted to try cloth diapering. Why you ask? Well let me tell you...

* Cost - It's estimated that over the course of diapering your child you will spend around $1500 on disposable diapers, whereas with cloth diapering your initial cost is more expensive (around $200 - $500 depending on the type and brand you get), but you can use them for the duration of diapering your child, and future children to come...saving you even MORE money!

* The Environment - I wouldn't say that Russ and I are "environmentalists", but we personally believe that as believers in the God who created this earth, it's our job to do the best we can to take care of it. It is estimated that around 5 million tons of untreated waste is deposited into landfills via disposables every year. If we can do something as simple as cloth diaper our child, and contribute to the lowering of that number, then why not?

* Health - There are all kinds of nasty chemicals that they put into disposable diapers these days to make them extra absorbent. I don't want that stuff touching our sweet baby's skin!!

* Potty Training - Because cloth diapers aren't as absorbent as disposables, babies tend to potty train earlier because they can feel wetness. Now obviously we haven't gotten a chance to test this out yet, but I'm already over changing diapers, and I haven't even started...ha...so anything that will help get this little guy on the potty and out of diapers, I'm willing to try :)

There are TONS of resources out there on the world wide interweb on how to cloth diaper, the different kinds of cloth diapering, how to clean, etc. simplemoms.net is a great resource I found on all things cloth diapers.

Russ and I have decided to go the all-in-one route, which unfortunately is also the most expensive way to cloth diaper your child...ugh, what to do! I am SO thankful that my friend Julie from patisserie mommie posted about Sunbaby Cloth Diapers! You can only buy them on ebay (I know...sketch), but they're super cheap (under $5/diaper...most all-in-ones will cost you $15 - $20/diaper), and Julie's tried them and LOVES them, and from what I've read online, they've been gettting good reviews. So Sunbaby we shall go! I'll let you know how these diapers do when it comes to testing them out, but I'm optimistic about the possibilities!

Although I've done some research, I'd LOVE to get your thoughts on cloth vs disposable and what works for you and your muchkin!

Well it's 5am now...I think I'll try to get at least a couple more hours of sleep before I really have to get up. Wish me luck!

Can we really only be 16 days away from baby day?!?!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Another project finished!!

Going along with the whole "Woodland" theme, Russ and I combined our brain powers and came up with this fun little idea for an ottoman! I basically created a slip cover that is over an ottoman we bought at Target. The woodgrain fabric is from the talented designer Joel Dewberry. It fits perfectly for what we had in mind. I embroidered the rings on a piece of white corduroy I had laying around, and then the leaves are scraps from the fabric I used for the turtle. Once I figured out how I wanted to make it, it really came together relatively easy...thank the good Lord for that :)



So my dear dear friend Melissa posted a fun little survey on her blog yesterday about her pregnancy. She is 16 weeks, due in August!! I cannot tell you how excited I am to be pregnant along with some of my best girl friends! I cannot wait til our babies are toddlers, and we can have play dates all the time!! I loved her survey so much, and get asked a lot of these questions, so I decided to copy her great idea (hope you don't mind Melissa...ha), and fill out the survey myself!

How Far Along?
37 weeks, and 6 days!

How Big is Baby?
According to our midwife, Mavis, at last week's appointment she was guessing 6 1/2 pounds...yikes!

Gender? Bouncing Baby Boy :)

Weight Gained So Far? I respectfully decline to answer this one...lets just say I've never weighed this much before in my life! haha.

Maternity Clothes?
Really the only piece of Maternity clothing I own are jeans with the full panel. They're pretty comfy. Although as soon as I get home from work, the first thing I do is put on my comfy clothes...ha.

Stretch Marks?
Ugh...I wish I could say No, but sadly I must say yes...boo! I did everything I was told...lotioned my big ole belly up 2 - 3 times a day with coco butter lotion, and still have stretch marks. Anyone know how to get rid of them after baby is born?!

Sleep?
I'd be doing great in the sleep department if it weren't for my dang hands!!! Because I'm swollen like a marshmallow at this point, all of the fluid in my hands and wrists is putting pressure on the nerves, causing my fingers to go numb. And then at night, my hands are throbbing. All I have to say is this had better go away once baby gets here, cause I cannot handle this!

Best Moment of the Week?
Hmmm...We found our pediatrician?! It's actually a HUGE relief to have that nailed down...one less thing to think about :)

Any Movement?
TONS!! It's the craziest thing feeling and seeing this guy move around in there. Every once in awhile, while sitting on the couch we'll see this massive movement from one side to the other. It's kinda strange when you really think about it. And although sometimes it's a bit annoying (like at night time when I'm trying to sleep), it's always comforting.

Looking Forward To?
Seeing our sweet boy's face for the first time! We're getting so close!!!

Embarrassing Pregnancy Moment?
Every day is embarrassing. My belly is my food catcher, my brain really doesn't work properly, and I waddle. I'm a waddling disaster...haha.

Thanks for reading...and enjoy your weekend friends!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I heart fabric...


I think I could browse fabrics all day every day. I cannot describe how or why I find textiles so appealing...they just are! One of my favorite fabric designers is the lovely Anna Maria Horner. She created the lovely yellow flannel, and the divine floral fabric. Not only does she create beautiful fabrics, but she lives in Nashville, has 6 kids (i'm one of six...wink) and has the sweetest blog. Anna, if for some random crazy reason you happen to stumble across my blog, and read this post, I love your work and you are a true inspiration!

I cannot wait to work with this fabric! The flannel and stripes (stripes designed by another of my favorite designers Heather Bailey. Her fabrics are to die for, and you should check her out!) are all lined up for top secret nursery projects...ha. Regarding the floral, I have still to come up with a good project for this gem. I have this really BAD habit of buying fabric without a project in mind...any suggestions? Unfortunately I only have a half a yard, so the possibilities are somewhat limited.

I finished my last bunny order last night...HALLELUJAH! This one has been quite the challenge since this carpal tunnel has set in. By the end of the night my hands were throbbing!

I really love this little lady though, and she was worth the challenge. I love the colors and just how she turned out in general. Unfortunately I wasn't able to get great pictures because of my silly camera, but you get the idea.

Well that's it for today. 24 days and counting...woohoo!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Weekend happenings..

I've found it is both a blessing and a curse to have random holidays off. An obvious blessing because one can usually sleep in and do whatever they want that day, but also a curse, because it makes it that much harder to go back into work! Haha.

Our weekend was pretty busy, but altogether great! Saturday I got to hang out with three of my bestest for a little brunch at Jackson's (just like old times). And then later on that evening, Russ and I put the changing table/dresser combo together!! Putting furniture together is one of our least favorite tasks, but we did it, and with very limited arguing and frustration...haha. We also worked on several nursery projects (pictures to come soon...we're getting SO close!!!), and watched a lot of the Olympic action. It's funny how the olympics just seem to draw us in. Sports that we wouldn't normally even think twice about watching, draw us in completely! It's pretty funny if you ask me!

Oh yea...I took a second stab at freezer paper stenciling!


If you live in Buffalo, then you know all about these awesome t-shirts that are everywhere these days. I absolutely LOVE these shirts, and would like to make one for myself one day, but I thought I'd start off with one for the babe...too bad that the tube of scarlett fabric paint turned out pink with sparkles in it! Ugh. (anyone from Buffalo or who loves Buffalo want a 6-9 month onesie for a little girl?!) I definitely plan on making another onesie...but hopefully with actual red fabric paint instead :) I think this second stab turned out pretty good! Still not perfect by any means, but I'm diggin it.

We hit the 36 week mark this past Saturday! It still has yet to really hit me that we're having a baby in around 4 weeks! All the signs are there (boy are they ever), I feel him moving around, I have a giant beach ball for a stomach, but the reality of just how much our lives are about to change has not really sunk in yet. I think it will take actually seeing little mister before it will really sink in. I'm still feelin ok these days. The mornings and night seem to be the worst. I've unfortunately developed a temporary case of carpaltunal (at least it had better be temporary!!), which makes typing at a computer all day, and then working on projects somewhat difficult. I have one more bunny order to finish, and then I think I might have to take a little knitting sabatical, my poor hands just can't take it!

On a different note...I've had an old hymn in my head all morning and just wanted to share...

I Need The Every Hour
Words by Annie S Hawks (1872)

I need Thee every hour, most gracious Lord;
No tender voice like Thine can peace afford.

I need Thee, O I need Thee;
Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior,
I come to Thee.

I need Thee every hour, stay Thou nearby;
Temptations lose their power when Thou art nigh.

I need Thee, O I need Thee;
Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior,
I come to Thee.

I need Thee every hour, in joy or pain;
Come quickly and abide, or life is in vain.

I need Thee, O I need Thee;
Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior,
I come to Thee.

I need Thee every hour; teach me Thy will;
And Thy rich promises in me fulfill.

I need Thee, O I need Thee;
Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior,
I come to Thee.

I need Thee every hour, most Holy One;
O make me Thine indeed, Thou bless├Ęd Son.

I need Thee, O I need Thee;
Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior,
I come to Thee.

Annie Hawks wrote: One day as a young wife and mo­ther of 37 years of age, I was bu­sy with my reg­u­lar house­hold tasks. Sud­den­ly, I be­came so filled with the sense of near­ness to the Mast­er that, won­der­ing how one could live with­out Him, ei­ther in joy or pain, these words, “I Need Thee Ev­e­ry Hour,” were ush­ered in­to my mind, the thought at once tak­ing full pos­sess­ion of me.

After writ­ing the lyr­ics, Hawks gave them to her pas­tor, Ro­bert Low­ry, who add­ed the tune and re­frain. The hymn was first pub­lished at the Na­tion­al Bap­tist Sun­day School Con­ven­tion in Cin­cin­na­ti, Ohio, in No­vem­ber 1872.

Some years lat­er, af­ter the death of her hus­band, Hawks wrote:

I did not un­der­stand at first why this hymn had touched the great throb­bing heart of hu­man­i­ty. It was not un­til long af­ter, when the sha­dow fell over my way, the sha­dow of a great loss, that I un­der­stood some­thing of the com­fort­ing pow­er in the words which I had been per­mit­ted to give out to others in my hour of sweet se­ren­i­ty and peace.

I couldn't remember all of the lyrics, so when I looked them up on google, I found those words about the song (found Here) from author Annie Hawks. These lyrics are just so pertinent to my life today, and every day really. I hope these words will be a blessing to you as well!

Happy Tuesday!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Freezer Paper Stencil...

I first heard about freezer paper stenciling off of this GREAT blog MADE. Dana has tons of awesome tutorials of how to repurpose old adult clothing into kids clothes. She's amazing, and you should definitely check her blog out.

Anywho...last night I finally got to it, and made an anchor stencil out of freezer paper, and made this cute little onesie for little man...

It's certainly not perfect, there are a couple pretty big boo-boos at the bottom of the design...but not too bad for a first attempt, eh?

Here are the basic steps for creating a stencil out of freezer paper...

a. Make sure you get Freezer Paper!!! Wax paper will stick to the t-shirt when you try to remove it, and parchment paper just won't stick. Freezer paper is the stuff your local butcher uses to wrap up meat, fish, etc. It's matte on one side and shiny on the other, and available at your grocery store.

b. Trace your design onto your freezer paper. I used a light box, but I would think if you're design is really dark, you may be able to see enough to trace onto your freezer paper. You can also just free hand your design onto the freezer paper directly.

c. Cut out your design out with an exacto knife or scissors. Remember that you're wanting to create a stencil so anything that isn't covered by stencil will get painted. In my anchor stencil I had to cut out a circle for the top

d. Shiny side down, iron your stencil onto your fabric with a medium - high iron (no steam). Make sure you iron down all of the edges, knooks, and crannies of your stencil to keep paint from seeping through. I obviously didn't do a great job at ironing on my stencil, hence the boo boos...ha.

e. Using permanent fabric paint (I used the Tulip brand. Michaels, Joanns, and Hobby Lobby should all carry it) paint your fabric making sure to paint all edges and using even smooth strokes. I only needed to paint 1 coat of paint on this guy, but if several coats are needed, wait a couple hours between coats.

f. Let your fabric dry overnight or at least several hours before peeling your stencil off. It should come off pretty easily.

g. To finish and seal the paint onto your fabric, cover the design with a cloth and iron it (leaving the iron on your design for around 30 seconds or so).

Voila...you're finished! In my unprofessional opinion :) this was really a relatively easy project, and I can't wait to stencil again! For a more detailed tutorial on freezer paper stenciling, check out Dana's tutorial HERE.

Yay...it's Friday! And I have Monday off for President's Day...double Yay!!!
Have a fantastic weekend!!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Oh yea...one more thing...

The bird mobile is finally finished and hung...


Hallelujah...I thought it would never happen :)

Monday, February 8, 2010

More pieces to the nursery puzzle!

As promised...I have a few more pieces to little man's nursery to share with you!! I don't know what got into me this weekend, but I was definitely EXTRA motivated this weekend to finish a few projects. There are still a good handful or so left to complete...but we're getting there!!

I used left over fabric from the birds I made for the bird mobile to make this little pillow for the rocker. I've been wanting to make something with bobble trim FOREVER!! It's definitely not nearly as easy to work with as I thought it would be, but I think it adds such a sweet little touch to something as simple as a pillow. How adorable would it look added to the edge of a tea towel or apron?! I plan on finding out :)

I think I've made an elephant or bunny for almost everyone else but our little guy...haha. So glad to have him and a little Finnegan fox finished and ready to be snuggled and played with!


This is a variation of Amy Butler's flower pillow design (I'd love to share the link with you, but her website doesn't seem to be working right now). I've made several of the flower pillows for nieces, and what not, but I don't really think a flower would do for a little boys room. So with a little inspiration from my husband's love for turtles, I took a stab at creating one. Turtles can be found in the woods too...right? I really love how the shell turned out. The hexagon shell (made up of various different texturized fabrics) and corduroy trim turned out better then I could have even hoped! It was a bit on the difficult side to work with...my poor hands took a beating trying to get this guy together, but totally worth it! I'm not quite as happy with how the head, legs, and tail turned out. I love the white corduroy, but wish I would have made these pieces a little bigger. Depending on how much it continues to bother me, and whether or not I actually have time, I might have to go back and make an adjustment there...we'll see. Haha.


I finished my deer head cross stitch piece!!! I could not put this thing down all weekend. Any spare moments I had were accompanied by little x's. This is the first and really only piece for a collage of art we're planning on hanging on the wall where the changing table will go. Still trying to figure out what the other pieces will be though...I'd LOVE to hear your ideas!!

And this is me...the ongoing 40 week project...hehe. We're at 35 weeks and counting, puffy face, hands, feet and all! Now I don't mean to complain, cause this pregnancy really has been relatively easy compared to some, but somewhere around week 33 the true discomfort everyone told me about started to settle in and make it's home in my body. I'm currently at that point where my physical body would like this baby to be born tomorrow, so I can start the process of getting back to normal (whatever that means..ha). But the rest of me still needs a little time. I keep asking little Addi to give me at least another 2 weeks, so I can finish his nursery...do you think he's listening? I have this odd feeling that he's going to come early. Now whether that's because I'm afraid he will come and I won't have everything ready for him, or motherly intuition, I do not know, but either way, when it comes down to it, Russ and I truly cannot wait to see our little guy face to face! I actually had a dream last night that I saw Addison...and it wasn't one of those weird dreams where our baby is an animal or strange looking creature. I had just given birth to him, and they were cleaning him up under one of those heat lamps. He looked like a normal, adorable little newborn with one of those little beanies on. That's really been my first glimpse of what it might be like the day he gets here. I get a little teary eyed thinking about how it will feel to finally give birth to our son, and have him in my arms, his face just an inch or two away from mine...gosh, I cannot wait!!!

Well that's it for today on the nursery and all things pregnancy. Thank you for putting up with all things baby that this blog has evolved into over the last 8 months or so!

Enjoy your Monday!!

ps - The non-profit (Come&Live!) my husband has helped to start has finally finished the last phase of their website...woohoo!! Please go check it out www.comeandlive.com

Friday, February 5, 2010

TGIF!

And that's the truth! I am VERY thankful today is Friday. I've caught myself a nasty head cold this week, and am looking forward to chilling at home a good part of this weekend.

We had our February installment of Craft Night this past Tuesday. Check out the Craft Nashy blog to read up on our cross stitch crafting this month! Most of us worked on a pattern of a deer head, that should hopefully look like this when finished...

I'm in love with this...so much so I'm making a deer head to put up on our little guys room as part of an art collage! I don't know what it is, but I love the antiquy (i don't know if that's really a word..ha) look of cross stitch. It's so simple, but totally awesome at the same time.

As always, if you live in the Nashville area and are interested in coming out to our monthly craft nights (first Tuesday of every month), shoot me an email (jilllouisehickman@gmail.com), and I'll get you added to that list.

I've got a lot of sewing planned for this weekend! So many projects, so little time to get it all done before little man gets here! I hope to have LOTS to show you come Monday morning!

I did finish a few orders this week, one of which is this super cute "Ripple" slouchy hat!


So this is one of my first attempts at writing up a pattern, so I hope this isn't too complicated or a complete disaster...hehe.

Ripple Hat

Size: To fit an average size adult head

Materials:
• 2 Skeins of Worsted Weight Yarn (I used Knit Picks Comfy Worsted Yarn)
• US Size 5 & 7 circular Needle, 16 inches, and Size 7 DPN
• Tapestry Needle
• Stitch Marker

Abbreviations
• K – Knit
• P – Purl
• M1F – Make One (Lift loop in between stitches and place on left needle, knit into the back of this loop: www.knitinghelp.com/videos/increases for help)
• YO – Yarn over
• K2tog – Knit two stitches together

Directions:
With Sz 5 needles CO 90 stitches with long tail cast-on (www.knittinghelp.com/videos/cast-on for help). Join and place marker to indicate beginning of round. Work in 1x1 rib (k1, p1) for 6 rounds. Switch to larger needles.

Increase:
Next Round: *K2, m1f, k1, m1f, k2, m1f, repeat from * til end of round (162 sts)

Body of Hat:
Row 1: *[K2tog] 3 times, [k1, yo] 6 times, [k2tog] 3 times; rep from * to end
Rows 2 - 4: Knit
Row 5: *[K2tog] 3 times, [k1, yo] 6 times, [k2tog] 3 times; rep from * to end
Rows 6 - 8: Knit. Break yarn, leaving 3 inch tails and join A & B together
Row 9: *[K2tog] 3 times, [k1, yo] 6 times, [k2tog] 3 times; rep from * to end
Row 10 - 12: Knit
Row 13: *[K2tog] 3 times, [k1, yo] 6 times, [k2tog] 3 times; rep from * to end
Row 14 - 16: Knit.

Repeat Rows 1 – 16 til piece measures 8 inches.

Decrease:
Note: When the decreases become difficult using the circular needles, switch to DPNs

Next Round, begin the following decrease
Round 1: K2tog around (81 sts)
Round 2: *K2tog, repeat from * til end, k1 (41 sts)
Round 3: *K2tog, repeat from * til end, k1 (21 sts)
Round 4: *K2tog, repeat from * til end, k1 (11 sts)

Break yarn leaving a five inch tail. Using tapestry needle, thread the yarn tightly through the remaining stitches. Pull tight before weaving in. Weave in all ends.

If you feel inspired to try this pattern out, I'd love to know how it goes for you and to see pictures!!!

Hope ya'll have a lovely relaxing weekend!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Sneak peak!

It's feeling a little more like the city I grew up in, here in Nashville. Much to my surprise, the weather folks were actually accurate in their forecast for a snow filled weekend, which in turn allowed me to go home early late Friday morning!

This is honestly the most snow I've seen in Nashville since I moved here. I enjoyed walking around and watching sledders fly down hills, but I'm just as happy to see it melt...ha.

This was taken Friday afternoon...we got another 3-4 inches on top of this by the time it was all said and done!

So, with almost a full day off, Russ and I got to working on baby boys' room!! I worked on some sewing and knitting projects (pictures to come), and Russ worked on the birch trees mural I've been telling you about.

About 7 months ago I saw this post on design*sponge. When we found out we were having a baby...I just knew I wanted to do the same thing in our little baby's room.

I'm good with textiles, but painting just really isn't my thing, so I enlisted my eager hubby Russell to do the honors and paint the birch trees!


BEFORE


setting up the projector...Russ randomly bought this projecter a couple years ago. Oh yea...and that's our amazing rocker we got for $30!!! It still needs a good cleaning, but I'm in love with it. It's super comfy, and both rocks and swivels! Probably one of my favorite craigs list finds ever!

Russ painstakingly drawing the trees onto the wall

...and then painting the trees with a little paint brush. Took him about 6 1/2 hrs total to get it all done! Thanks babe...you're the best!!

Daddy's little helper :)


Drum roll please.....


AFTER...Taadaa!!!
I seriously could not be happier with how the mural turned out!! We were a bit nervous about the paint colors (cause the accent color didn't look nearly dark enough in the paint can), but I think the shade difference turned out perfectly!

Getting this mural done, and the crib set up has really gotten the both of us motivated to get the nursery completed and ready for his arrival. We still have a couple big pieces to find! I can't wait for it to be finished and to show all of you little Addison's nursery (I'm about 97% sure that's what his name will be...ha). It's a work in progress...but we're getting there!!

I hope you all enjoyed your weekend!