Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Quick Fix for the cords

Baby is a complete trouble magnet. He will bypass the coolest toys in order to attempt to stick his finger to a light socket or play with electrical cords. In a high-tech family and a small house like ours, he's always got something he is headed for. (as I write this, he just reached up onto the breakfast table and tried to throw a bowl of eggs). He can't be out of sight for more than 10 seconds or there is big trouble.
One of the biggest problem areas in our house is daddy's power strip by his desk.... I've spent money on different childproof boxes for the strip, but they are ugly, enormous and they are almost impossible to access the plugs with.
Finally I decided that we needed just a simple sack over the strip. As he gets bigger, we can get those locking beads for the ends, but for now, this works perfectly. Easy access, pretty, small, flexible, and it's also made of laminated cotton so that dog hair doesn't stick to it. ;)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Project bags

Since I have so many various projects I'm working on, I needn't have something to carry them in, right?
A few months ago at the LAMQG swap, I received from my partner, Jamie, a most adorable project bag for carrying around portable projects. I use it all the time and love it so much that I figured I needed a few more.
That same meeting I also won a door prize... A scrap box from Robert Kaufman.. Strips of scraps mostly in black and whites.
None of the patterns (other than the obvious polka dots) really fired my creative engine, but I liked them as a whole. So the other night, I strip pieced them together and made these two bags. The gradient bag has a zipper at the top and is big enough to hold my huge paper piecing quilt top. The other drawstring bag was perfect for carting my supplies yesterday to and from the Denyse Schmidt quilting workshop I took. More on that adventure later!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Mimi finishes her bag

The design director and I went shopping on my birthday for some fabric and had a blast. We went to Sew Modern, a fellow LAMQG pal's store in West LA and she had the women there in stitches (no pun intended) as she picked out her fabrics.

They were blown away by her sense of color and asked her to bring in her finished project. We have plans and clearance to bring it to the next guild meeting, along with her quilt she made a while back, and she will get to be a part of the group's show-and-tell time.
The bag is a design we worked on together, but other than the hand sewn snap and attaching ribbon to the webbing fabric for the straps - she sewed every single stitch, een attaching the straps and label.
(I'm so proud of her!)
Ze Artiste decided he wanted to do one too now and we made him a great pouch with basketball fabric that he also sewed completely by himself on my machine. (post to come)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Work in Progress - paper piecing

Oh haha, if I posted every work I had in progress right now, you would think your friend Libby was certifiable. But the one I'm showing you here is really special...
This is a hand-sewn proect... Made by a process called "English paper piecing" where you baste scrap fabric to little shapes of paper and sew them together before popping out the paper. (no need for am iron to get perfect shapes)
It's been a WIP for probably 6-9 months now. I work on it in the car as I wait outside DCFS 2-4 times a week while baby has his visits with mom and other various family members. I do a few pieces at a time and stick them back into a project bag. I had about a hundred little squares going on and was stumped for a while as to how I could do some modern type of setting for them... So I decided since this is all scrappy anyways that I was going to use about 8 different whites to make brick shapes to offset the bright squares. This summer, I've been bringing it out at night and cranking on it... Now it's about 60"x20" and I'm hoping it gets to 60"x60". That's just the quilt top. I'm thinking though, that since the whole top will be hand-pieced that I'll have to quilt it by hand, so I'm currently practicing my hand quilting on another project (I'll show it later).
The other thing is that since it works in the car, i can actually get some sewing done during the day. The kids don't really let me get anything done during the day, let alone sewing. The big kids are starting summer camp this week, so soon I'm just going to be a baby mama for 8 hours a day (playdates, anyone?) -at least until Baby moves out, which, sadly, is likely to be soon. ...In the meantime, this has been a great way to channel my stress. And boy have I needed a channel.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Today I was in a store and asked for my parking to be validated. A customer next to me looked at me kindly and deeply and said, "you know what? I want to validate YOU. As a person" He had NO IDEA how much I needed to hear that. I told him so.
 Then, I posted that on Facebook and a friend told me that "validation" was the subject of a great short film.  Please click the link below and watch this. You will be SO glad you did.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


My dad is an artist and has a funny tradition of drawing caricatures of himself on food... (he used to leave faces on all the eggs in his mom's fridge)
Last week we had this watermelon graced with his likeness. Somehow, it makes it a little harder to chop into now.

MOCA - art in the streets

This week while Mimi was still at school, all the guys and I took a trek to downtown to see the Art in The Streets exhibit at MOCA. There was so much to be inspired (and shocked!) by, but one of my two favorite rooms was this exhibit based on cut paper, light and shadows. 100 photos couldn't capture the beauty of this room, and I could have stood there for an hour, but maybe even a few small pics can show you how beautiful this room was.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Bearing fruit

This is mind-boggling. The past month I've been in a real slump. (you probably gathered that reading around here... I wish I could be more clear about our foster care process, but I'm not allowed to, sadly)
Anyhow... In the midst of the baby birds outside my bedroom window and the spring sunshine, I have also noticed something odd about my grapevine in the backyard. It was given to me 3 years ago when a dear friend of mine had to leave LA and she and her hubby sadly had to let go of a bunch of their treasured plants. I've done my best over the years, but never had one grape. Then a few weeks ago there were tiny little grapes appearing... And now, now the vine is bursting with bunches and taking over our yard. I took this pic and sent it to my friend and she sent me the following email  and Bible verses...

"you have to frame this. you don't realize how significant this is. Chris had this grapevine since when we were first married (I will ask him again how he got it I am sure there is a story there). It almost died so many times but he brought it back to life and now you have kept it alive....but it NEVER bore fruit ever! until now. Which is no mistake.
I believe it is to give you hope.
... I believe it is symbolic of the fruits of your labor and what is in store for you.
Jn 15.1   I am the true vine and my Father is the garden. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit, He prunes so that it will be more fruitful.
Ps. 1:3  He is like a tree plantedby streams of water which yields it's fruit in season and whose leaf does not whither. Whatever he does prospers.
Prov 11:30  The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life
Matt. 7:16  By their fruit you will recognize them
Gal 5....fruit of, joy, peace, patience, kindess, faithfulness, gentleness, self control....

Sent from my trusty little iPhone



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