It's a good thing I don't know what today's date is...because I would probably see that I have too much to accomplish in the time allotted. Even thinking about it right now makes my heart rate increase.
When I start to freak out, Dipper Pines brings me back to reality. (This is my whiteboard that keeps my life from going completely haywire...and can be seen every time I walk into the kitchen)
Thanks Dipper. (I know he's freaking out here, but usually he's all about getting it done)
You only get one life to live, you might as well live it AMAZING.
What amazing means varies from person to person. For us amazing looks like freedom. Freedom to have the time to explore whatever we want, whenever we want. We have learned (over and over again) that a luxury kitchen, 3-car garage and having kids dressed in boutique clothes does not make us happy.
Seriously...thinking back to your childhood...which memories stand out the most? For me (and Jon) they tend to be the ones that cost the least money. Climbing trees, camping, picking cherries, exploring nature, spending time with family and friends, learning new things, cooking from scratch, eating a beautifully prepared family meal over a beautifully decorated table...and oh so much more.
And the really cool thing is that these are the same things that people have enjoyed about life for thousands of years. Not once in there did I mention TV or computers or iphones or Kindles. Because as much as we like those things...I would bet that no one ever thinks of them when they consider their best memories. The strong memories that bring tears of joy to your eyes as you recall them.
So we are setting out to make our one life amazing, while the kids are still young, while we still have a chance to make their lives amazing...and to that end, this is our new home. Floating atop the Pacific Ocean, docked on an island in Southeast Alaska...the salmon are so prolific outside the boat right now that you could scoop one right out of the water if you wanted to. It's an amazing chance for us to live our life to it's fullest, without being weighed down by a large house and a lot of stuff. We're in the process of remodeling the inside and downsizing our stuff to move onto the boat. It will be a crazy month, but I think it will be well worth the effort. Stay tuned...before and after pics to come.
What is with this sudden increase in sewing, you ask? School is ending! Summer is starting! Our time is becoming more our own (as it should be). It feels good just being able to do nothing if nothing is what I want to do. (Of course I should be cleaning and organizing...but what fun would that be?!?!)
Actually, this started BECAUSE I was cleaning and organizing. I started sorting through old clothes and such to donate...and before I knew it I was taking things out of the donation bags to breath new life into them as Laurel's summer wardrobe.
I made one like this last year (below) after seeing a tutorial posted on Pinterest. I made a more subtle color choice this year though, which will help match more of her wardrobe. Plus I made a few adjustments this time...for instance, making the pockets big enough to actually put a hand into (oops!), and making it long enough to be comfortable for anything. I'm not a big fan of skirts that don't play well.
I used the scrappiest scraps, making this skirt FREE. The tan came from the striped curtains I made last year from Walmart sheets (which were only $5 to begin with), and the contrast on the pockets is from the skirt I made for myself last week. This is why I don't throw scraps away!
I still had a hemmed edge on the sheet scrap, so I just lined it up and cut out a rectangle. Then I cut out the pocket, and a length of trim to match. I just folded a 2" strip of fabric (about the same length as the curve of the pocket) in half and pinned the cut edge of the strip to the cut edge of the pocket and sewed it in place. Then you can snip the curve, press it back and top-stitch it to make it look/sit nice. Then place a rectangle of fabric behind the pocket and sew it to the front panel. Then sew the front panel to the back panel, make the casing for the elastic...and...done!
(For one added detail I made the casing a little too big and then sewed an extra line of stitching at the top...I don't know what you call that, but I like the way it looks)
I think it's a good lesson in life to deal with death in small doses. It's a real lesson, one that I think we shy away from in our culture. But the truth is, it does happen, and it's awful.
Daffy was only 4 days old when he passed, but he was the duck that Laurel had bonded with the most. He would sit and cuddle with her for long stretches. (Likely the first sign of his coming demise) As every day passed he became progressively less able to walk, and mostly just sat and peeped weakly. Laurel did her best. She came up with a special food plan, opening his beak and feeding him a few drops every hour or so. She tried her best to nurse him to health, and to love him back to life.
On Daffy's last night Laurel decided to sleep downstairs to keep a closer eye on him. But no matter what she did, in the morning when I woke up and went to peek on them...Daffy had passed away. My heart broke for Laurel. I let her sleep longer, mostly just to keep that innocent little girl innocent for a few more minutes. But when the time came, I told her. And she cried, and Luke cried, and I just held them and let them cry.
It was kind of beautiful in a weird way. As a parent, but especially as a homeschooling parent, you really get to experience everything with your kids. And that's how it should be. We help shape the way they handle life, death and everything in between.
Here's to Daffy Duck. Rest in peace sweet little duck, you will be remembered by a little blonde girl for the rest of her life.
First, I laid out the sweater and used a tunic she already had as a makeshift pattern. (I traced around it with a marker, then cut it out)
I used the little extra piece of material at the top as the ruffle sleeve, I just flipped it around so that the flat side was in towards the sleeve hole, allowing the rounded side to ruffle.
Then I just sewed up both sides along the marker line, hemmed the outside edge of the sleeves (I think that's easier to do before you put them on) and then I put the ruffle sleeves on.
IT WAS THAT EASY! The sweater was headed to the Goodwill anyway...so it doesn't even matter if you screw it up. That's the beauty of up-cycling, it allows you to experiment without spending a lot on fabric.
Becoming Maggie Blue means trying to be my best self. I love nature, travel, crafting and my family. I am doing my best to raise my kids to be awesome human beings through homeschooling and exploring the world with them one adventure at a time.