Saturday, November 27, 2010

I hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving! I just wanted to share what I've been up to lately. First, I made these super sweet little flower broaches using this tutorial, which I found via Little Bit Funky. I'm probably going to make tons more of these, including some for me! 

I am slowly but surely gaining more confidence on my sewing machine, and after making the last pair of pants for Maximus, I was able to figure out what I wanted to change about the pattern.

I made a pair for Mad, too. Both pairs are lined with the fabric from an old t-shirt to make them more durable and warm, especially considering the weather we've been having. I also made then have cute, contrasting cuffs, in hopes that will make them last longer.

 You can almost tell by this photo that I tried my hand at making a flat front waist for Madelynn, but I still have some work to do on that, since it made them a little more "bunchy" in the back and on the sides than I would have liked.

End of photo shoot. whew!


Monday, November 22, 2010

coolest hat yet

I made this hat last week, and finished it off with pom poms just in time to wear it in our season's first snow!! I love this hat, but because I went down a needle size, it turned out a little small. That was initially ok since I made it for Madelynn, but she will only wear it after a small amount of coaxing because she insists the "arn is scratchy." I might knit another one for me, adding another cable repeat in the back so it doesn't fit as snugly. I like it knit at the tighter guage, as I think the cables really stand out more that way. If you're interested in knitting it, I put some notes up on my ravelry page, which I think help clarify the cabled earflaps.

Here's Madelynn wearing the hat. I find this photo herlarious (typo intended, it's a shout-out to my lil' bro). It is cut out of the family photo that Mama Rhondi took yesterday, and it may or may not end up on the front of our Christmas cards this year.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010

dear bill gates,

Hire this boy already, would you!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

small project (gift idea!)

I used this tutorial to make some sweet little cloth napkins. Need something to do this weekend? Why not grab your favorite fabric to make some cool binding and throw together a few napkins for yourself. Or make some for a gift!

 You could even take it a step further and do some cute little embroidery on them.


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

inspiration overload

This is the result of having so much inspiration, but little direction. I realized last night that my entire sewing table is covered with various projects and supplies.

 I'd like to say it's because I'm being super productive and getting tons of stuff done, but really, I'm just getting lots of things started. Before I can even finish a project, it seems something is inspiring me to start something else.

 I can't pin it down exactly, but I'd say that all that inspiration is probably coming from here, herehere, and here.

 Fortunately, at least one of my projects has an end in sight, and I'll share the details soon.


PS- Please excuse the purple walls. My sewing table is set up in what used to be the playroom.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

lovely morning!

Last night I decided, despite the fact that we are on a health binge and gave up most baked good, to bake some cookies. It must have been my intuition working (and my craving for peanut butter), because a few short hours later the power was out. The outage lasted until this morning. The kids leapt out of bed this morning and tried every single light switch and the television's power button, but none of them worked. I could have told them that would happen, but they wouldn't have believed me, so I just sat back and hoped the task of flipping all the switches would keep them busy for hours. It didn't. So we snuggled on the couch under all the blankets we own and ate cookies for breakfast. Then the house shook. I texted my mom (who's house is about 20 feet from my front porch) to see if she felt it, too. She didn't. I was pretty sure I was going crazy. But I wasn't.

All in all, it was a lovely morning.


Saturday, November 13, 2010

he's a saint.

This is what Gus looked like when we first brought him home. Madelynn adored picking him up and playing around with him. He was only seven weeks old in this photo.

This is what Gus looks like today, almost a year and a half later.  
I think he could probably pick her up now.

He was pretty sure they were raking him up a bed.

Seriously, good dog.


Friday, November 12, 2010

this moment.

Inspired by SouleMama.
{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see. 
Wishing you a lovely weekend!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

sweet potato burritos.

I have to start out by telling you that I didn't know I liked sweet potatoes (I should clarify that what I call sweet potatoes, you might call yams) until I was pregnant with my son. I had been turned off of them as a child when I was subject to canned yams covered with marshmallows at Thanksgiving, and it wasn't until just a few years ago that I finally had some real ones and fell in love. The only problem is that I ate them at somebody else's house for the first time, and they were roasted in the oven with butter (so yummy, and also makes great baby food when mashed), but that is the only thing I have known to do with them ever since. That is, until I came across the recipe for sweet potato burritos via Keeper of the Home. I made them one night for dinner, and then made them again the next week for guests and got great reviews. I also made them at last weekend's knitting retreat, and then I came home and made more and put them in the freezer. They freeze really well, which I love since I don't buy pre-made frozen food anymore. This has easily become one of my most favorite simple, nutritious recipes.

Hope you enjoy!


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

free holiday cards?!

Yes, please! I can't believe it's already that time of year again. We don't even have any plans yet this year, but to get the ball rolling, I just found out that bloggers can get 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly, by signing up here. I am pretty excited about this since I was already thinking that some super cute photo Christmas cards are in order this year from the Penn family. I always knew that Shutterfly did cards, but by poking around the site a little more this morning, I also found out that they can turn your photo into a canvas, and you can make super sweet personal calendars using all your own photos! What a perfect gift for grandparents. Now the only question is, which photo(s) will I use? I was thinking I would have a special Christmas photo taken for our cards this year, but then I saw that some cards allow you to have multiple photos, am thinking that would be a great way to show friends and family how the kiddies have changed over the year.

I hope you have a great time getting ready to welcome this holiday season!!


productive weekend.

This past weekend my mom, mother in law, her sister, and her mother and I attended our second annual knitting retreat at Grampa Jack's house. It was so lovely. We first planned this event last year when we thought it would be nice to get away for a quiet weekend of knitting, in time to finish up (or in my case, start) any knitted gifts we might be working on in time for Christmas. I was able to make some decent headway on Madelynn's Christmas dress, which comes from the book, Mason-Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines. I also nearly finished Maxi's sweater, and knit another hat for my husband, which is a free pattern on ravelry. I have also updated my ravelry page with my modifications and project details.


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

my funny girl.

I have to start by pointing out how fantastic her Cinderella costume is. Don't most little girls who play "Cinderella" pretend to be the glamorous version from the end of the story? Not mine. She'd rather suds up the floor and sing (loudly!) some of her own melodic tunes.

Then, when she realized I was taking her pictures, she stood up and curtsied, and then in no time flat broke out in the craziest and most carefree dance I've ever seen.

I was completely cracking up! Which I'm positive was her intention.

Obviously, she cracks herself up too.

Nothing is taken too seriously in her world, and boy does she know how to cut loose!

I could learn a thing or two from her.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

another quick knit! (gift idea)

Here is another great project suitable for some beginners, and it makes a super cute gift. I made this one for my 5 year old nephew, and it is modeled by my 4 year old daughter. But imagine it on a little two year old. So cute. Or a teenager, or even your husband (mine wants one!!), who will surely recognize the Goomba face from Super Mario Bros. The hat pattern I used is  Ellen's Basic Hat (click that link), and it gives directions for knitting the hat flat, and sewing up a seam in back, or knitting it in the round (seamless). Since this pattern doesn't actually have the Goomba face (you just knit the hat in brown and then duplicate stitch* the face on following the chart for the Goomba Hat.), you can make lots of different hats from it. Knit one for yourself, knit one for your neighbor, knit one for a charity.

* Duplicate stitching is a way to sew a design on your project, after your project is complete. This way,   you don't have to worry about color changes or joining new yarn. Here is a great tutorial for duplicate stitching that I found on The Purl Bee.

Monday, November 1, 2010

a quick knit! (gift idea)

I knitted the Calorimetry a few weeks ago for my girl, who has been asking for quite some time if I would knit her something purple. Apparently the sweater I knit her wasn't quite the shade she'd been seeking. Anyway, after playing around in my room for a few minutes she came out with a dark purple ball of yarn and said she'd like, "a new dress to wear today." Though I'm flattered that she imagines my knitting ability is comparable to Wonder Woman (I like to imagine Wonder Woman knits. Even more so, I like to imagine that Wonder Woman knit her own outfit one day in the blink of an eye), I told her I would not, could not knit her a dress in one day (or at all). So instead, I knit this sweet headband/ear warmer up in just a few hours (and then I let it sit around on the counter for a few days until finally figuring out what to do for a button). She was pleased. And she insists the button belongs in the front.

This really was a fun, quit knit, and is perfect for a beginner. I do believe I'll be knitting a few more of them this month for all the little girlies in my life.

I hope everyone had a fabulous Halloween! 
 we had lots of sweets,

fun times with cousins,

and some good trick-or-treating!