Sunday, February 19, 2012

My New Fashion Mate Sewing Machine from Grandma

During Presidents' Day weekend my grandma (AKA, Nona) passed on her late 1960s, Singer 237 Fashion Mate to me and showed me how to do the basics: threading a needle, winding a bobbin, pulling up the bobbin thread, using the presser foot, and sewing forward and in reverse. That is a lot to take in for a person who had never (not once!) touched a sewing machine, but I soaked up as much as I could and started sewing away. With my grandma's expert guidance I finished my very first dress! I am so thrilled that Grandma is teaching me all that she knows (an astonishing knowledge!) about sewing, and that I have a new hobby.

Here she is--the cutest little Italian-made Fashion Mate ever! So, I'm a little obsessed with her. Once home, after doing some research I learned she's all metal except the hook race cover, the one plastic piece. I love all 32 solid metal pounds of her! I even got her a new slide plate from an online sewing parts company. It suits her. :)


My grandma showing me how to sew the first pieces of the dress.





Lucy modeling the dress. It came out really well, almost entirely because I had the best teacher a student could ask for.


Here's Annabel's that I finished on my own at home.


Modeling the back, with one down feather slipper on. What can I say, she's got style!





My third project: Lucy's spring dress. The hem looks uneven in the picture, but it's not. :)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Visit to Grandma's House

To Grandmother's house we went for Presidents' Day weekend. What a blast we had! The weather was nice, so the kids played outside the first evening we were there, then they helped Grandma make homemade pizza. Yum!

The next day we got up early and headed over to the Sundial Bridge and Turtle Bay. So much to do there: animals, museum, aviary, interactive creek and playground. What fun! Later that day Mom and Grandpa Red took all three kids to see The Muppets while Nona taught me the ins and outs of the sewing machine she gave me and we started on a dress for Lucy (more on sewing in the next blog post). We fit a ton of fun with family into one short weekend trip and we can't wait until spring break to do it again.

Lucy and Grandma spreading out the dough.


All three kids spreading out the red sauce. (This was hard to watch. And even harder to clean up.)


On go the toppings.


The kid friendly pizza (the adult one had many more toppings; both pizzas were delicious!).


Perched on a turtle at Turtle Bay. They all are actually saying: "Turtle Bay!"




My mom and the kids on the Sundial Bridge.


One of me and the kids on the Sundial Bridge.


Inside the museum looking at an exhibit of the river from the bottom up.


Annabel with the river fish.


It was a special fly fishing weekend, so all the kids tried their hand at casting. (No hook was involved, thank goodness!)


Here's Lucy trying out casting.


Annabel was quite good at casting!


There was a Dr. Seuss exhibit, which was very cool but not something we could enjoy with a 3-year-old in tow.


Annabel and Sammy driving in the Chevy.


Sammy built this tower.


Lucy tied this fly. It's hard to do.


A grey fox Turtle Bay rescued.


Sammy doing some serious digging in the gravel pit.


Annabel's favorite part of the day: creek play!


Sammy's got a lorikeet on his head!


Annabel was happy to look at the birds but did not want them to be near her at all.


Lucy's got a lorikeet on her head! (And she was in HEAVEN!)


So, yes, Lucy and I loved the lorikeet aviary the whole time, but as time wore on Sammy and Annabel not so much (as you can see by his face). Still, it was a great place!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day

For Valentine's Day Paul and I exchanged a present each (I got a showing of Breaking Dawn Part I, he got a wall calendar I made for him on KodakGallery). In addition to the little tokens of love for each other, Valentine's Day also is about making little loves for the kids and their friends at school. I always have made homemade valentines for the kids and the tradition continues, but with the work now lessened on my part because Lucy makes nearly all of her valentines on her own. She loves to do it and I love to see her craft away.

Annabel with one of her valentines for a classmate, signed by her and made with my help.


Lucy with one of her valentines for a classmate, made entirely on her own.


All three kids' valentines for classmates.


Here's Sammy's: I "Wheelie" Like You!


I filled jars with kisses and wrote a note to each of the kids about how much we love them.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Lucy's Heart Story Movie

I made this movie to tell Lucy's heart story. It's also for CHD Awareness Week, which is going on right now. Four years ago today was her open-heart surgery, always falling near Valentine's day and always a reminder of hearts, love and the strength of our little girl. After this, I think we will close the chapter on calling attention to her heart story. I'm waiting for the scar to rear its ugly head, and what we'll have to deal with when Lucy realizes that she is a bit different in that way. But until then, this is it. Enjoy.

P.S. The video isn't centering correctly. Bummer. Not sure how to fix that. If you click on the link in the upper left hand corner you can watch it in full form at its original location on YouTube.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Sammy

Sammy picked out this donkey hat all on his own. He had a choice of dog, owl, monster, donkey, sock monkey, lion, penguin, polar bear, and so on and so forth. He picked donkey. He is his own person through and through.



After sending the girls off to school one morning, Sammy spent some time finger and foot painting in the condensation on our glass front door. Poor kid had been on day who knows what of being sick and enjoyed a little diversion, I think.



Here's a shot of Sammy sporting his new shoes: his very first pair of Vans. He picked the checkerboard design. Pretty proud, and someday I'm sure our fearless little guy will be skating "Off the Wall."

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Students of the Month and Other Awards

Our school girls each were awarded Student of the Month in their respective classes for the month of December (I guess the laminating machine was on the fritz for a bit?). Annabel also was awarded a certificate for perfect attendance. (Yay, for health!). Lucy also was recognized for excellence in the Accelerated Reading program, which promotes reading and comprehension. She had 121 points from AR tests at the time but now has more than 175 points. (Yay, for reading!) We are proud of them for their great achievements!





Our school girls ready to rock kindergarten and second grade this winter!