2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog. I thought it would be fun to share it here. ūüôā

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 38,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 9 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

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Treasure Pocket Pants

Sewing for Boys: 24 Projects to Create a Handmade Wardrobe

Image courtesy of Amazon.com.

I’m excited to share my latest attempt at a sewing project from Sewing for Boysthe Treasure Pocket Pants!

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This was begun just before I landed on bed rest and it taunted me in it’s pile of pieces on the sewing table throughout the duration of my time down. Once I was cleared to get up I attacked it with a vengance as I really wanted Eli to have this pair of pants in time for Christmas. All told I spent about 3 weeks on it as it just takes me forever and many mishaps to sew up things according to other people’s instructions. I just keep reminding myself that it is all part of the learning process. And I did learn a lot… including how to make a faux fly!

Treasure Pocket Pants side panel 1

The side panels are pieced together from old t-shirts and other articles of clothing I had been saving exactly for this purpose for quite some time. To avoid having the knit fabric stretch too much during assembly I backed the assembled panels with muslin.

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I hit a bit of a wall during the construction of these pants in that the pattern pieces for the side panel above the pocket and the rest of the side panel were different widths. I measured and remeasured and wondered how I could be messing up so royally and yet be unable to find my error. I was very pleased to discover that I was not at all at fault (for once!) and that there has since been published a corrected pattern piece that can be downloaded and printed off the web. (www.sewing-for-boys.com/ updatesanderrata/)

Eli in Treasure Pocket Pants Christmas Day

In addition to the side panels, all the other fabric used to make these pants was reclaimed from old clothing as well. I really like that this one pair of pants helped make a bit of a dent in my stash of fabric for repurposing.

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This was featured!
A Jennuine Life Thrifty to Nifty Thursdays Feature
Here’s where I’m linking up:

Sunday:

I {heart} Naptime,  Flamingo Toes, jembellish clothes upcycling page,

Blissful and Domestic,

Monday:

Skip to My Lou, The Gunny Sack, Sew Can Do, Keeping It Simple,  An Original Belle,

I Should be Mopping the Floor, The Dedicated House ,

A Round Tuit,  C.R.A.F.T.,  diy home sweet home,

Craft-O Maniac, Sew Chatty, Sarahndipities , The Cure for the Common Monday

Tuesday:

Not Just a Housewife, Hope Studios, Funky Polkadot Giraffe, Kammy’s Korner,

Home Stories A to Z,  Crafty Confessions, Homemade Tuesday,  Today’s Assignment,

Antiprocrastination Tuesday, Take-a-Look Tuesday,  Nifty Thrifty Tuesday,

The Creative Itch Boutique, Schwin and Schwin, Heart and Soul Blog Hop

Wednesday:

Sew Much Ado, Frugally Sustainable,  Lil’ Luna, Someday Crafts, Whimsy

Wednesday, Whatcha Work Up Wednesday

Thursday:

Mom On Timeout, Thrifty Decorating, Bear Rabbit Bear, Thriving on Thursdays

The Crafty Blogstalker, The Shabby Creek Cottage, House of Hepworths,

Sorta Crunchy, Delightful Order, Anything Goes Linky Party, A Jennuine Life,

Friday:

Simply Designing, Whipperberry,  Happy Hour Projects, 

Joyful Stamper, Making Lemonade Blog, Thirty Handmade Days,

Naptime Crafters, Romantic Home, Finding Fabulous, Diana Rambles,

Shabby Nest, French Country Cottage, The Charm of Home, The Grant Life,

At the Picket Fence, Fingerprints on the Fridge, One Artsy Mama,

Saturday:

The Gingerbread Blog, Too Much Time On My Hands, Hello Weekend,

Six Sisters Stuff, Serenity You, Be Different Act Normal

“Baked” Potato Microwave Bag

At the Christmas Eve Eve celebration we attended this bag was given as a hostess gift. I heard people raving about how well it works and it looks super easy to make. The potatoes made this way taste oven-baked, with the exception of not being crispy on the outside, and are so much faster to make with less energy consumption than the traditional way. We don’t use a microwave at our house so I won’t be sewing up one to make a tutorial myself, but I found one here.

Microwave Potato Bag

The tutorial calls for using batting, but the bag circulating at the party (and the ones others were speaking about that they had received and used) did not use any batting, just quilting fabric on the outside and flannel inside.

While looking for a tutorial to link to I did find some important advice on other sites. It is important to use only 100% cotton materials, NO polyester at all, or there is a risk of the bag catching fire in the microwave (not to mention potential unsavory synthetic off-gassing). Also regardless of the fabric size recommended in the tutorial, double check that the potato bag is small enough to clear the sides of your microwave by at least an inch.

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Close up of the instruction label pinned to the microwave potato bag.

Whether made for yourself or to give as a gift, this is one super quick and easy project that receives rave reviews… just thought I’d pass it on. ūüôā

Here’s where I’m linking up:

Sunday:

I {heart} Naptime,  Flamingo Toes, jembellish clothes upcycling page,

Blissful and Domestic,

Monday:

Skip to My Lou, The Gunny Sack, Sew Can Do, Keeping It Simple, Polly Want a

Crafter , An original Belle,  I Should be Mopping the Floor, The Dedicated House 

A Round Tuit,  C.R.A.F.T.,  diy home sweet home,

Craft-O Maniac, Sew Chatty, Sarahndipities , The Cure for the Common Monday

Tuesday:

Not Just a Housewife, Hope Studios, Funky Polkadot Giraffe, Kammy’s Korner,

Home Stories A to Z,  Crafty Confessions, Homemade Tuesday,  Today’s Assignment,

Antiprocrastination Tuesday, Take-a-Look Tuesday,  Nifty Thrifty Tuesday,

The Creative Itch Boutique, Schwin and Schwin, Heart and Soul Blog Hop

Wednesday:

Sew Much Ado, Frugally Sustainable,  Lil’ Luna, Someday Crafts, Whimsy

Wednesday, Whatcha Work Up Wednesday

Thursday:

Mom On Timeout, Thrifty Decorating, Bear Rabbit Bear, Thriving on Thursdays

The Crafty Blogstalker, The Shabby Creek Cottage, House of Hepworths,

Sorta Crunchy, Delightful Order, Anything Goes Linky Party,

Friday:

Simply Designing, Whipperberry,  Happy Hour Projects, 

Joyful Stamper, Making Lemonade Blog, Thirty Handmade Days,

Naptime Crafters, Romantic Home, Finding Fabulous,

Shabby Nest, French Country Cottage, The Charm of Home, The Grant Life,

At the Picket Fence, Fingerprints on the Fridge, One Artsy Mama,

Saturday:

The Gingerbread Blog, Too Much Time On My Hands, Hello Weekend,

Six Sisters Stuff, Serenity You, Be Different Act Normal

Very Belated Pregnancy Update

I received so many kind comments when I posted I’d been put on bed rest due to placenta previa. Thank you… it really helped to connect with people virtually, especially when prevented from getting out to see people face to face! During my time down I did get some felt play food made for Eli, learned how to knit a simple wash cloth, tried my hand at a crochet project that I’ve since abandoned as unworthy of further time investment.¬†

It’s now been two weeks since I was cleared for normal activity after an ultrasound showed that the placenta has indeed moved up and out of the way. I’ve just been so swamped trying to make up for lost time in Christmas prep that I hadn’t yet gotten around to updating my new status on this blog.

We have finally agreed upon our wee one’s first name, but the middle name is still to be determined. From here on out she will be known as Zoe. The name means “abundant life” and is one I have always liked. It seems rather appropriate in this case as while I had thought Eli was very in the womb, this one is already running laps around even him!

I am so thankful that this pregnancy is no longer as high risk as it was, Zoe is doing very well, I am out of bed (!) and my family is able to celebrate Christmas with the extended family. Life is good indeed!

A Unique Christmas Tradition

When my husband was about 8 or 9 years old there was a power outage as the family sat down for a meal of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese on the evening of December 23rd. They quickly lit candles, and thus the Christmas Eve Eve tradition of mac¬†‘n’ cheese by candlelight born.

It has grown quite a bit since its humble beginings as all good traditions will. Now, more than 40 years later, relatives from near and far as well as family friends gather at the home of one of the siblings, to enjoy the synthetic cheesiness of the iconic blue box mac and cheese (though now there are plenty real food offerings available as well.) The lights are turned out and candles lit throughout the house as people catch up with dear ones they often haven’t seen since the year before and meet new friends as well.

It was a smaller group this year as many of the usual relatives were unable to make it for one reason or another. Even so there were around 25 people and plenty of delightful conversation. One of my husband’s cousins had moved too far away to make the trip this year. He kept texting pictures of the Christmas Eve Eve he and his wife were observing in their new home.

Explaining the Christmas Eve Eve tradition to Eli.

Explaining the Christmas Eve Eve tradition to the new generation. The idea of there being candles with no “Happy Birthday” song and immediate blowing out was a bit mind bending at first.

While this year was Eli’s third year in attendance, it was the first year he really got what was going on. I couldn’t have been more content than I was to sit back and watch him bond with his cousins, having the time of his life holding court with a gaggle of teenage girls.

Does your family have any unique traditions? I’d love to read about them in the comment section below. ūüôā

A very Merry Christmas to you all!!!

Fairy Mushroom Ornament

Fairy Mushroom Ornament

The end is almost in sight for this year’s ornament making. This latest creation is for my mother-in-law who has a small Christmas tree in her kitchen dedicated to fairies.

Mushroom Fairy

Mushroom Fairy (Photo credit: amboo who?)

In my limited knowledge of the world of fairies, it seems to me that they often seem to be congregating around or living in mushrooms (or are they toadstools?).

Fairy's toadstool

Fairy’s toadstool (Photo credit: katmary)

I decided to make a little mushroom fairy house ornament  for her tree. I had seen the idea here on Etsy.

English: Fairy tale toadstool Fly agaric (Aman...

English: Fairy tale toadstool Fly agaric (Amanita muscaria) on roadside in Bedham Copse. Don’t eat these unless you particularly enjoy vomiting, diarhoea and wishing you were dead. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I didn’t realize before making this that there is an actual fairy tale toadstool that has a red cap. Hopefully my erroneous choice of color isn’t too large of a faux paus.

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I attached an assortment of beads to the top in a random manner to make it look spotted and speckled.

Now it is all boxed up and ready to be wrapped for giving on Christmas Day. (Hopefully my assumption that she doesn’t avidly follow this blog isn’t too far off the mark… If I’m wrong, sorry to ruin the surprise, Susan!)

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Here’s where I’m linking up:

Fall Into The Holidays

Sunday:

I {heart} Naptime,  Flamingo Toes, jembellish clothes upcycling page,

Blissful and Domestic,

Monday:

Get Outta My Head Please, Skip to My Lou, The Gunny Sack, Sew Can Do,

A Round Tuit,  C.R.A.F.T.,  diy home sweet home,

Craft-O Maniac, Sew Chatty, Sarahndipities , The Cure for the Common Monday

Tuesday:

Not Just a Housewife, Hope Studios, Funky Polkadot Giraffe, Kammy’s Korner,

Home Stories A to Z,  Crafty Confessions, Homemade Tuesday,  Today’s Assignment,

Antiprocrastination Tuesday, Take-a-Look Tuesday,  Nifty Thrifty Tuesday,

The Creative Itch Boutique, Schwin and Schwin, Heart and Soul Blog Hop

Wednesday:

Sew Much Ado, Frugally Sustainable,  Lil’ Luna, Someday Crafts, Whimsy

Wednesday, Whatcha Work Up Wednesday

Thursday:

Mom On Timeout, Thrifty Decorating, Bear Rabbit Bear, Thriving on Thursdays

The Crafty Blogstalker, The Shabby Creek Cottage, House of Hepworths,

Sorta Crunchy, Delightful Order, Anything Goes Linky Party,

Friday:

Simply Designing, Whipperberry,  Happy Hour Projects, 

Joyful Stamper, Making Lemonade Blog, Thirty Handmade Days,

Naptime Crafters, Romantic Home, Finding Fabulous,

Shabby Nest, French Country Cottage, The Charm of Home, The Grant Life,

At the Picket Fence, Fingerprints on the Fridge, One Artsy Mama,

Saturday:

The Gingerbread Blog, Too Much Time On My Hands, Hello Weekend,

Six Sisters Stuff, Serenity You, Be Different Act Normal

Leather-Backed Hand-Drawn Fabric Ornaments

Owl with Candy Cane Ornament

I’ve been wanting to try my hand at drawing on fabric with Sharpie for a while to create some fabric with an unique print to sew into clothing for Eli. I just kept assuming the ink would bleed and I wouldn’t be able to get any crisp lines and so I never really have gotten around to actually experimenting. While using a pair of my old khakis to sew him some new trousers though I looked into the waste basket and realized I was throwing away small scraps that would be perfect for trying out my idea. ¬†I sketched a few things and then realized I could put my little experiments to use making Christmas ornaments!

These are quick, fun and easy. As for subject matter you are limited only by what you can draw within a little circle. I made some owl themed ornaments just because… what’s not to like about owls?! Then I made some ornaments for my nieces based on their personal interests.

Step 1

Trace a circle on cloth

Choose some scrap fabric. A tight weave works best. Trace a circle in pencil onto the fabric. I used a biscuit cutter and that seemed about the perfect size for the ornaments I wanted to make.

Step 2

Draw on fabric with your Sharpie

Draw the designs you want onto the fabric with your thin point Sharpie. I’m embarrassed to say that most of these owls I copied from a search I did on Pinterest. I went back to find the sources to give credit where credit is due, but a couple of weeks have passed and the old search results aren’t coming up. Shame… If you recognize your design here or know the source please let me know! The candy cane owl was ¬†holding a little bouquet of flowers in the original source.

Step 3

If you wish you can add a little bit of acrylic or fabric paint.

Paint the ornament design if desired

painted ballerina slipper

Step 4

Here is the point where I forgot to take pictures, so bear with me! I cut identically sized circles from scrap leather for the back of the ornament. You could use fabric and sew right sides together, then turn right side out before stuffing if you want. I liked using the leather because it is thicker and I wanted my sewing lines to become part of the design. I put a doubled length of ribbon in the seam at the top of the ornament before sewing it and started sewing nearer to the bottom of the ornament. I went almost all the way around the circle with a 1/4″ margin and stopped.

Step 5

Stuff the ornament through the gap you left in your stitching.

Stuff the ornament

Step 6

Owl with Candy Cane Ornament

After the ornament is stuffed I sew around and around the outer edge making a line that looks a bit like you scribble-doodled a circle. On this ornament I then went back in and embroidered the candy cane stripes and a thicker red dashed line around the outside as well.

Here are some of the other ornaments I’ve made in this style so far.

Assorted stuffed ornaments

Here’s where I’m linking up:

Fall Into The Holidays

Sunday:

I {heart} Naptime,  Flamingo Toes, jembellish clothes upcycling page,

Blissful and Domestic,

Monday:

Get Outta My Head Please, Skip to My Lou, The Gunny Sack, Sew Can Do,

A Round Tuit,  C.R.A.F.T.,  diy home sweet home,

Craft-O Maniac, Sew Chatty, Sarahndipities , The Cure for the Common Monday

Tuesday:

Not Just a Housewife, Hope Studios, Funky Polkadot Giraffe, Kammy’s Korner,

Home Stories A to Z,  Crafty Confessions, Homemade Tuesday,  Today’s Assignment,

Antiprocrastination Tuesday, Take-a-Look Tuesday,  Nifty Thrifty Tuesday,

The Creative Itch Boutique, Schwin and Schwin, Heart and Soul Blog Hop

Wednesday:

Sew Much Ado, Frugally Sustainable,  Lil’ Luna, Someday Crafts, Whimsy

Wednesday, Whatcha Work Up Wednesday

Thursday:

Mom On Timeout, Thrifty Decorating, Bear Rabbit Bear, Thriving on Thursdays

The Crafty Blogstalker, The Shabby Creek Cottage, House of Hepworths,

Sorta Crunchy, Delightful Order, Anything Goes Linky Party,

Friday:

Simply Designing, Whipperberry,  Happy Hour Projects, 

Joyful Stamper, Making Lemonade Blog, Thirty Handmade Days,

Naptime Crafters, Romantic Home, Finding Fabulous,

Shabby Nest, French Country Cottage, The Charm of Home, The Grant Life,

At the Picket Fence, Fingerprints on the Fridge, One Artsy Mama,

Saturday:

The Gingerbread Blog, Too Much Time On My Hands, Hello Weekend,

Six Sisters Stuff, Serenity You, Be Different Act Normal

Letter to Eli, 33 Months

Dear Eli,

I don’t think I can tell you how much I am enjoying you at this age! When you were a little baby, you were so cute and sweet in many ways I almost wished you wouldn’t grow and change because I thought I’d miss that stage too much. I couldn’t imagine you would be any more sweet than you were then. I knew it would get easier (that it HAD to get easier!) but I wondered what would be lost as you matured. But the truth is it just keeps getting better and better. I now sometimes think of you at four, seven, or ten years old and wonder if parenting you could be anywhere near as rewarding then as it is now. Hard as it is to imagine, I now believe that life with you will continue it’s present trajectory of wonderfulness, even as we are sure to face the various inevitible challenges of growing up along the way.

You love to discuss all the different parts of vehicles. We hear "It have wheels on it!" exclaimed often.

You love to discuss all the different parts of vehicles. We hear “It have wheels on it!” exclaimed often.

So what is so fun about this particular age? For one your capacity for self-expression continues to grow by leaps and bounds. Of course I’ve always felt that I’ve known you extremely well, but now I know so much more about what is going on inside your head and heart. And it is delightful. You are funny, and fun-loving, sensitive, affectionate and loving, and oh, so imaginative! Nothing in our home is ever as it seems anymore. A chair is not a chair… it is a garbage truck. Your wagon is a lawn mower. Cords, straps, strings, etc. are seat belts. (I love that you are super concientious about keeping them from going around your neck.)¬†And when you are in full garbage man mode (which is often!) almost everything is “ew, yucky!” and the garbage truck needs to eat it. The only things exempt from this treatment seem to be the library book What Brothers/Sisters Do Best and the baby doll we bought you back when rinsing your hair in the bathtub was cause for much anxiety. These things you soberly declare “Not ew yucky! This clean!”¬† I think you are doing well at preparing yourself for the roll of big brother.

Playing with play dough is definitely among your most loved activities.

Playing with play dough is definitely among your most loved activities.

Here you are sharing the love. :-)

Sharing the love. ūüôā

This month riding your bike has become one of your favorite activities. It used to be that you would just kind of walk along dragging the bike along with you between your legs. Now you sit and glide and have learned to steer around obstacles with pretty impressive precision. You are still using your little quadracycle that is really too small for you, and I think you are ready for your balance bike, but we have an issue with your helmets.¬†The toddler helmet¬†simply won’t fit over your head at all and the youth helmet just slides right off the back of your head. So for now I’m content to let you just ride the bike that is closest to the ground and not apt to tip over. You are so funny coming down the small hill on the sidewalk yelling “I don’t have a helmet! I don’t have a helmet!” You definitely inherited your father’s saftey-conscious gene.

Play Kitchen at IKEA

You love to go play at IKEA! The play kitchen is by far your favorite. (You’re getting one for Christmas. I think I’ll enjoy your reaction almost as much as you’ll enjoy receiving it!)

You really like hiding and spinning in this chair at IKEA as well.

One major development with you over the past month has been that you have been learning how to manage situations that make you feel anxious. Dogs have been a long standing source of fear for you. Up until now the mere sight of a dog, even a small one on a leash far away, meant that you had to be picked up and carried, wimpering until the dog was long past. Then all of the sudden, one day as we were walking past a PetSmart on dog adoption day you opted to continue to walk with me holding hands instead of having your Daddy carry you safely by all the commotion. You kept saying to yourself, “I be okay, I be okay.” I was so proud of you! Since then you use that tactic for self reassurance fequently. I hear you tell yourself you’ll be okay at times when I haven’t even been aware there was anything amiss in our surroundings. Not only are you okay, little Eli… you are doing fantastic!

The other situation this new level of maturity became apparent this past month was when we ran into a neighbor family on the sidewalk. For some reason though they are among the nicest and friendliest of people they have always struck terror in your heart. This time though, not only did you say “Thank you” to the lady when she complimented you on the car you were playing with, but you allowed us to be invited for a visit inside their home! There you ate the cut up apple she prepared for you, remembering your manners, and lasted for about a 15 minute visit. I was so pleased and frankly astounded. They have always wanted to help us watch you from time to time and we trust them, but it hasn’t been possible. Perhaps now it will be.

Enjoying a soy ice cream sandwich on Thanksgiving. By evening you had tasted and loved your first piece of pumpkin pie!

Enjoying a soy ice cream sandwich on Thanksgiving. By evening you had tasted and loved your first piece of pumpkin pie!

Keeping you away from dairy because of your allergy was never an issue as far as you were concerned. All I had to do was tell you the desired item had milk in it and would make you all itchy and you wouldn’t want it anymore. Until Thanksgiving weekend that is. All of the sudden there was sobbing and much distress everytime you couldn’t have something. With the whole holiday season upon us we knew this was going to be an ongoing issue, so we decided to let you challenge the allergy again as we have quite a few times (unsuccessfully) in the past. We figured either you’d have a reaction we would have to weather over the next 3 or 4 days and the experience would then be fresh in your mind as Christmas goodies came your way, or we’d find you’d finally outgrown the allergy. Well, it would seem you have outgrown the allergy! You are gleefully scarfing down pizza and pumpkin pie. I am giddy at not having to scrutinize every label quite so closely anymore. I think you are still a bit sensitive, or maybe just not used to digesting dairy protien so we are limiting the amount you get quite a bit, but I think this Christmas will be much more enjoyable for you from a culinary standpoint this year!

When childcare fell though for us at the last minute before my prenatal appointment this month you accompanied us to the doctor’s office. You really enjoyed the experience! I don’t know if it was seeing your sister on the ultrasound, seeing someone else being on the examination table for a change, or the fact that there was a garbage truck picking up the trash from the building’s dumpster as we were walking in. Since then you keep asking to go to see the doctor. At church you climbed up an outdoor staircase and started to climb on top of the 6 foot high wall, and when I told you to get down please because I didn’t want you to get hurt and have to go to the hospital you almost lept off immediately. “I want to go to the hospital!” you kept saying for quite a while after that. Before the week was out you got to do just that as I had a bit of pregnancy trouble. Unfortunately (for you)¬†you slept through the entire thing! You did get to see the hospital when you came back to visit me later that evening and to pick me up the next morning, though. Now you want to go back, and to be honest, I wish you’d quit saying that, because I don’t! Not for a few months anyway!

Sleeping though all of the hospital excitement.

Sleeping though all of the hospital excitement.

The outcome of our hospital visit is that I am now on bedrest. This is quite difficult for you, and for that I am very sorry. Even so you try to be so helpful and bring me things I need, and take things from me to throw away, etc. You also give me a lot of cuddles and snuggles, which I just adore! Hopefully things around here will normalize soon, but even if they don’t I know you will handle it just fine.

Due to my being on bed rest now our Christmas plans are a bit up in the air right now. I so hope we’ll be able to take you to see all the relatives in Tucson, but we will just have to see how the situation develops. At least if we don’t go you are too young to know what usually happens and won’t be as disappointed as you would be if you were older. In the meantime you are loving the whole Chirstmas thing as you are finally old enough to “get it”. You are so excited about the Christmas tree and will look at it and say “My Christmas tree!” For a boy who previously wouldn’t speak a word to any stranger, you now have a lot to say if they only ask you if you have a Christmas tree. Then it’s “It have lights! It have o’naments! It have a star on top!” When you say the last part you put your fist on top of your head for emphasis. And the best part is that you don’t even yet realize that Christmas means getting presents. You’re just loving the beauty and specialness of the season. Yep, regardless of where we spend it, Christmas this year with you is going to be so much fun!

I love you so very, very, very much!

Mama

 

Pregnancy Update

The little one continues to grow steadily and is VERY active. Today we are at 27 weeks. I began bleeding a little bit on Friday though and the doctor directed me to go to the hospital. There monitoring showed that thankfully there are no contractions. I stayed¬†overnight for continued monitoring as a precaution. I am now home again, but on bedrest. Previously I had been on restricted activity, such as no heavy lifting, because of a marginal placenta previa. I had hoped it had moved by this point, but since I began bleeding that would seem not to be the case. I am now allowed to get up to use the bathroom, but shouldn’t even sit at the table to eat.

Being monitored for contractions.

Being monitored for contractions.

I was on bedrest for a month with Eli’s pregnancy as well until the partial placenta previa migrated to a safer location. It was much earlier in the pregnancy though. I’m finding it much more difficult this time around in that I now have a toddler to take care of, and it is happening¬†right in the thick of all of the Christmas preparations. I had so many projects on my sewing list between gifts I wanted to make and clothes the Eli needs now and the baby will be needing soon enough.

Yesterday I was up more than I should have been. Today, I’ve been doing a bit better, and tomorrow I’m sure I’ll do better still. It is hard to stop your life on a dime, when you weren’t expecting to need to do so just yet. When I have been up it has been to get some things organized so that I can have work to do with my hands as I rest, and to put things Eli needs where he can have more independant access to them, such as the pack of diapers down on the floor instead of up on the shelf. He has been great at fetching things for me that I need and being as helpful as a little boy can be. My husband has taken on the lion’s share of all there is to be done as well as his regular work. I am so glad he works from home these days. My sisters-in-law have also been wonderful:¬†Jacki has been¬†taking Eli back and forth to school, running out to the craft store and produce market for me, and coming to take Eli out to play; and Susan, who is an incredible cook, has sent over yummy food that we have just to heat up. At a time when I am tempted into a funk over this unwelcome development, I find I don’t have to look too far to see how truly blessed I am. Of course the most important blessing of all is that right now this baby inside me is still doing just fine.

Eli slept the entire time I was being admitted and checked out.

Eli slept the entire time I was being admitted and checked out.

I’m not sure how much blogging I’ll be getting done over the the duration of Operation Bedbound. On one hand I have more time now, and now that I’m slowly figuring out my husband’s old laptop it looks like I will still have computer access. On the other, I have to see how streamlined I can make the process of photgraphing and downloading pictures, etc. Not that my photography tends to be spectacular anyway, but for now I may have to be content with flash photography with the bedspread as a background. Then there is the issue of all of the projects I had slated to accomplish and share here being mainly things that require the use of the sewing machine.¬†That, of course, remains a big no-no.

My plan thus far is to do something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time but haven’t had the right circumstances… learn to knit and crochet! Using YouTube I’ve already learned to cast on and begin knitting. I’m about 1/3 of the way through my first washcloth! Not exactly blog-worthy eye candy, but I’m very happy about it. I hope to quickly learn other stitches and how to read patterns. Then it’ll be off to the land of all cuteness, knitted baby clothes! I’m also planning to try my hand at crocheting this baby hat. Jacki gave me this lovely crochet hook that is the perfect size for the project this morning.

My first knitting project and new crochet hook.

My first knitting project and new crochet hook.

My other focus will be sewing felt food for Eli. He will be getting a play kitchen for Christmas and will need some food to prepare in it. I think it will be a lot of fun to wade through the many felt food tutorials I’ve pinned and sew away. Maybe I’ll be able to work out and share a few tutorials of my own.

My apologies to the many people who have commented on other posts here at Folk Havenover the past few days for not responding. I read them all, and appreciated them. Now that I can use this laptop I hope to keep on top of these things a bit better again.