January 26, 2010

The Weekend and so on...

This weekend, my sweet hubby decided it was time to redo the powder room downstairs. Mind you, he just started his fall semester about 2 weeks ago, and we are trying to finish potty training our now 4 year old. Perfect timing... I think not. Here's what my view was most of Saturday:
Monday rolls around, a nice rainy Monday, and we are home from school sick. Nothing like homemade soup for lunch on a sick day. Why did it take me this long to realize I could put tortellini in Chicken soup instead of just noodles? Seriously, it was good.Doesn't she look so much more sad with her little cast on?? I think it's quite cute actually. She severely sprained her thumb playing with a yoga ball. The bruise on her hand 2 days later was really cool looking, her palm was blue and the lines where your hand creases were purple. The only reason I can talk this calmly about it is because it stopped hurting her the morning after she did it, and it hasn't hurt since, thankfully! She was pretty excited to get a cast too, and everyone decorating it for her made it even more fun for her. The only thing she doesn't like is how her hand stinks now.

January 23, 2010


My Grandmother is an amazing person. She lives in West Virginia on a farm of about 90 acres. It's the place I want to be, always. It's almost spiritual to me, if that makes any sense.

The house sits on a little plateau like area at the base of the valley and the road bends around it. There is nothing but mountains in sight, and a creek runs through the property, coming right by the house. Simply beautiful.

The way I see it, my Grandma has it made. She runs her own business, Smoke Camp Crafts, making jams, jellies, spice mixtures, herbal medicines, teas and the likes. She has a workshop that is an entire cabin! Hopefully I can get there someday.

One of my favorite things about my Grandmother is her collections. She collects Owl, Basket, China, Books, and Garden Ornaments. These collections seem to be in ''stations," as I call them, around the house, and they are wonderful.

I never really noticed until the last time I was there, that my Grandmother also had quite a few vintage quilts. I asked her about them, and her Grandmother made them. I thought they were quite amazing, here's a picture of one:

January 22, 2010

Friday Find: Smitten Mittens by Lovedriven

Back to a good Friday Find, Lovedriven!

I got an email from Etsy, and low-and-behold, this is the very first thing I saw when I opened it:

How adorable is that?!?! I mean, seriously!

I have seen quite a few of these mittens for holding hands in, patterns for them, and whatnot, but I have never seen one like this.So, I email Hannah, the woman behind these beauties, and here's her bio for you:

My name is Hannah Welch ; I was born in Orlando, Florida. When I was 19, I moved to Boston and attended Massachusetts College of Art. I had no clue about seasons or cold weather, and as much as I loved to see the leaves change, I hated the freezing winters. I created the Smitten 10 years ago out of necessity. I was dating a Massachusetts native and unlike me he was acclimated to the cold. I would not leave the house unless completely covered and holding hands through thick gloves seemed impersonal and awkward. Hence the birth of the Smitten!I moved to Los Angeles, California where I obtained my degree in Art History. I lived abroad in Florence, Italy for two years where I studied, worked and learned Italian. Now I am back in Florida making Smittens and looking for ways to return to Europe permanently.

All of my Smitten’s are hand-made and stitched by me. The adorable cards that come with the smitten’s are hand-designed by my father Al Carroll; he is an old school graphic designer (meaning NO Computers, a steady hand, and a lot of patience.) My newest items are called Love Dove totes and can also be found on my Etsy page. The image on the bags is another example of my fathers handy-work.

So, in other words, since you need a Valentine's Day gift for someone, get one of these!!

January 21, 2010

Look What We Learned

Just in case you all were wondering,
my cute and adorable little baby just learned to do this:

And, yes, she is playing with an empty spool. Getting her interested young :)

January 20, 2010

Doll Quilts

Rectangle Quilt

Well, my first Honey Bun did not disappoint!

I successfully made 2 doll quilts before Christmas, and I started them only 10 days beforehand.

I was able to make 2 separate quilts out of only 18 strips of the Honey Bun, and they come with 40, so you could make double the quilts from one Honey Bun! One quilt completed at around 17 1/2 inches square and the other at about 17 1/2 by 23 1/2 inches. Excuse the poor lighting, the picture of the strips below is the true colors, I am not a photographer, or maybe it's the camera... I'll go with that.

Square Quilt

Here's what I did:

18 Strips from a Honey Bun

(for square one)
18 inch square piece of batting
18 inch square piece of muslin

(For rectangle)
18x24 inch rectangle of batting
18x24 inch rectangle of muslin
18x1 1/2 inch strip of muslin

I sewed the strips together in sets of 6, and pressed them all seams in the same direction. Then cut 2 18 inches from each section of 6. Now you have 2 sections of each set of strips that are 18 inches long (6 sections total). Set the remnants aside for rectangle quilt.

For the square quilt, take one of each different section and simply sew them together. The top is done! As an added detail for the back of the square, I cut my muslin in half and used the scraps of strips to make a 1 inch strip between the 2 halves. Make sure to cut out all the pieces for both quilts before doing this just incase you don't have enough left over.

For the rectangle quilt, sew the remaining 3 sections of together. Sew the 1 1/2 section of muslin across the top. Cut 1 1/2 inch sections of the remnants of the origional 3 section, you should have 3- 1 1/2 inch strips from each section (total of 9). Lay them out making a rectangle that has 3 sections across and 3 high, re-arange them so that it's not the same pattern all the way up. sew the strips together in rows across, then sew the rows together. Now sew this smaller rectangle to the top of the muslin, and the top is done.

For both quilts, lay the quilt top down, right side up, then the muslin, then the batting. Sew around the edge using about 1/3 inch seam allowance, leaving a gap for turning (about 4 to 5 inches). Trim corners and turn right-side out. Now, top-stitch all the way around using about 1/8 to 1/4 inch seam allowance, this will sew the opening shut that you used for turning, and give a nice edge. Quilt as desired, I simply used a wave stitch on the diagonal for the square one.

Edited to add: I would LOVE to see any blocks/projects you create with this pattern! Feel free to join & share in my Flickr group: Your Lyanna Jean Designs.

Just a reminder, my patterns are for your personal use and enjoyment only. They have not been tested, so if you find an error feel free to let me know at lyannajeandesigns@gmail.com.

January 8, 2010

10 More & 10 Less for 2010

So, I have been thinking about this since watching the Ball Drop.

I have never been one to have a New Year's Resolution, I think they're kinda a cop-out. What I mean to say is, if you really want to change something about yourself or your habits, don't wait until it's time to jump on the bandwagon. Be like Nike and just do it.

However, I really wanted to have 10 things I want to have or do more of and 10 things I want to have or do less of, so here's my lists, not in any specific order:

10 More:
  • Trips to the Beach (I'm only 1 hour away now...)
  • Fresh flowers, I love Tulips
  • Special moments with the kids, you know, the good ones
  • Showing my Hubs how much I love him, I seem to tell the kids all the time
  • Sewing
  • Letters to Family, I think handwritten letters are so special
  • Pictures, I really started slacking last year
  • Gardening, it helps that I finally have a yard that we own
  • Serving others, I try now, but want to do more
  • Being Outdoors!!

10 Less:
  • Stress... seriously
  • UFOs (un-finished objects)
  • Messes
  • Saying No to my kids just cause I don't feel like cleaning up afterwards...
  • Sharing words with other drivers that I know can't hear me anyway
  • Doubting myself and others
  • Being impatient
  • Excuses
  • Take-Out
  • Gossip, I know, sometimes it's a little fun, but seriously... no good.
This was actually a bit harder than I though it would be, try it.
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