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From the mad scientist.

Having never tried to make a gender neutral anything before I hadn’t realized how hard it was going to be for me. I am blaming my sister-in-law for this (joking).

My brother and his wife have elected not to find out whether they are having a boy or a girl so the rest of us have to suffer wait patiently as well. I do not have patience. Ask anyone that knows me. So when I decided to make them a blanket for the baby I had no idea where to start.

I had quilters block (bad pun intended).

The first mistake I made was not having a clear plan. I generally make things off the cuff as a rule but normally I have some idea what I want it to look like when I finish. Sometimes I draw pictures to give the idea more of an outline but I lost my good drawing pencil. I think a certain 3-year-old had something to do with its disappearance but I’m not certain.

The first idea went down in flames. Pastel coloured flames. With teddy bears. And there was too much blue. Even though blue is her favourite colour it was too boyish.

I found some blue and green striped fabrics. Mixed them with the bears and the pastels and it was a mess.

I tried adding more green. more yellow. more white. nothing. every block I tried just looked more horrible than the one before. I needed to walk away.

I started digging through my fabric stash trying to put the baby blanket out of my mind and start work on something else when I fell upon this large piece of bright striped fabric I bought at Ikea in the summer. and thats when the lightbulb went off. I may not be able to make pastels work but I could definitely have fun with bright stripes!

But my quilters block hadn’t quite worn off yet because after making this…
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I felt like something was still missing so I ended up ripping this apart as well.

And then I did this….
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And I decided I liked it.

The blue still makes it a bit boyish but hey I have a 50/50 chance that they will have a boy! and I may still make something else if I get a chance to “see” the baby at the next ultrasound.
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I found this on the internets while I should have been working was taking a break today. “seamed” ever so fitting to my attempts at crafting last night. especially #23 (which may or may not be #17now). Keep in mind this does pertain more to sewing garments then quilting. It has not been copied in its entirety and the numbers are a bit out of order from the original because of that.

Things I’ve Learned From Sewing at 2:00 a.m.

  1. My bobbin winder hates me.
    Lisa Ashton’s Corollary:
    Don’t try to talk on the phone and sew a straight seam unless you intend for your finger to be included. Blood on white fabric is frustrating, and the screaming scares the cat.
  2. The more you try to fix the hem, the more you will screw it up.
    Lisa Ashton’s Corollary:
    If you have just sewn the same seam inside out or right side to wrong side TWICE, it’s time for a break.
  3. I need a serger.
  4. If the neck hole was too little the first time, only cut a little bit off at a time. There’s no going back. I now have an off-the-shoulder undertunic.
  5. If you’re trying on the garb you’re sewing over and over to get the right fit, it’s easier just to sew nekkid. Someone please tell me I’m not alone.
  6. The first time you sew it together, use a big stitch. They’re easier to pull out.
  7. Trying to convince yourself that no one will notice that the sleeves are two different lengths gets easier as the night goes on.
  8. They play really crappy music on the radio at 2:00 a.m.
  9. Ignore the “Buy 1 more yard than you think you’ll need” rule. Replace it with the “Buy 7 more yards than you think you’ll need” rule.
  10. Get $1/yard fabric. Then you won’t swear at yourself so much.
  11. The warning on cold medicine that says you shouldn’t operate heavy machinery while on this drug should state sewing machines specifically.
  12. If you’re going to be trying on something that’s pinned, and have to pull it over your head, remember to wear protective eye gear.
  13. The numbers on my tape measure move. They must. I’ve measured 3 times, and it’s still not working.
  14. You really do have to match plaids or your butt looks funny.
  15. At 4:00 AM, leaving the garb too big sounds perfectly acceptable.
  16. No matter what you learned from your last 2:00 a.m. sewathon, you’re gonna do it all again.
  17. Never cut fabric strips in the middle of the night!
    Michele Sol – ask her about her belly dancing outfit experience.
  18. It is best not to continue the project once the cat decides that you are still sitting at their night time sleeping area.
    Alix Jordan

*no copyright intended. I do not own this information. Link is to original post as found online.

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This past week my mom finally got the results from the lumpectomy and the surgeon was very pleased.

The tumor was diagnosed as Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS). It is the most commonly found type of breast cancer and is considered non-invasive.This is the good news.

There are several websites devoted to breast cancer but I averaged a few and they all said relatively the same thing…

“When you have had DCIS, you are at higher risk for the cancer coming back or for developing a new breast cancer than a person who has never had breast cancer before. Most recurrences happen within the 5 to 10 years after initial diagnosis. The chances of a recurrence are under 30%.” – quote from the website linked.

The bad news: this is what happened to my mom over 10 years ago. The cancer came back about 5 years after her first lumpectomy.

Mom hadn’t had the radiation treatment then but this time her options are different. The surgeon was different. The surgeon was AWESOME. She is such an amazing lady and I am glad my mom was able to get treatment from her. She was so informative and comforting. She was straightforward and open. She was optimistic.

and mom is optimistic.

I’m going to try to be. Not that I am going around all doom and gloom but  its hard to forget what happened last time. I don’t want to see her go through that again. ever.

but overall this is a good thing. a very good thing.

 

Cough. Cough. Hack-hack.

Its 130am and I am up coughing and hacking once again. At least this time I don’t have to work tomorrow.

but sadly its not the only thing that’s been keeping me up at night. 

This past week marked the trial of a psychopath in my community. his actions have ruined so many lives and he will now spend the remainder of his life behind bars. the media has reported that the healing can finally begin now that justice has been served but can it? is it that simple?

this trial was surprisingly public in details. there were live Twitter feeds directly from the courthouse. The confession tape has been played on numerous media websites and news channels. And his face has been on the cover of every newspaper.

And then it was over.

After all the gory details had been laid bare it was over in 4 days. And even though the charges in total added up to over 140 years it doesn’t seem like enough. Not when the sentences will run concurrent and he is “eligible” for parole in 25 years. He should never have the option of being eligible for anything. ever again.

This whole situation has made me just that much more paranoid about the world we live in. And it makes me nervous about the future.

My son’s future.

I wonder how anyone could grow up to be that person.  

I look at my sweet, innocent boy and I am afraid for him. Its hard to fight the anxiety that comes with letting him grow and try new things and eventually going off on his own in the years to come. I wonder about the person he will become.

I wonder how to teach him that there are monsters hiding in plain sight and worry about keeping him safe from them.

I had this light.

 

funky old (seriously dirty) homemade light

 

I think I bought it at a yard sale like 5 years ago and it has been sitting around collecting dust ever since. I don’t think I had ever even tested it out to see if it worked. (it does!).

I really like it but needed something. and I didn’t have any sort of glass orb that I could make magically appear in place so I did the next best thing. I made something. I just had to cover that hideous cord and chain.

I have this fun yellow flowers on white fabric that I though would go really well as the “orb” but now I wonder.

this is how it looks now…

I think it would look better if it was a darker fabric. red or blue….or red.

I’m going to have to make a few more and see what they look like. maybe I’ll just make a few different ones that I can change up once in a while.  Anyone have any red flowers on white that they want to send my way?


The light shines through the yellow quite well and it is quite bright. I am definitely going to make some darker covers to see what happens.

and this is what happens when I don’t clean up after myself when messing around with my fabrics and leave scrappy piles everywhere.

seriously. every time.

Have you ever felt like everyone you know is having a baby?

Okay so technically its not possible for everyone I know to be having a baby since half of them are men and well you just don’t see that very often…unless you’re Thomas Beatie. He’s had three!

Officially I know four ladies who are expecting. Two of these ladies are related and the other two I actually like. JOKING! Seriously though I am very excited for all of them! Especially the one who’s growing my niece or nephew! Oh yes, I am going to be an auntie! I can’t wait!

And I felt the need to make something that would fit in a crib so this is what I came up with….

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its not done, this is just the top.

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love the birdies.

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and the polka-dots!

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This will be the back…
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And this was just too cute!
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Update*
I know five ladies that are expecting and feel totally bad that I forgot one when originally writing this post.

Life is hard.

Relationships take work. the benefits aren’t bad but some days the pay sucks.

Only your child can drive you to the brink of insanity just to see how much you will put up with and you will still love them unconditionally.

Houses and cars require maintenance and upkeep. and these things are ridiculously expensive.

Not all dogs are like Lassie.

And there are so many more little things.

Seriously I should have been taking notes!  

Because learning all these things on your own can be rough.and when you get to the point where you’re taking stock of your life do you wonder how the hell you ever got there in the first place? Or are you just thankful to be in this place at all?

I do both. Frequently.

I may have made some mistakes along the way and I’m sure I’ll make more but that’s life. And I’ve learned from those mistakes.

I have broken trusts and had mine broken as well.

I have battled personal demons and won.           
           
I have had my heart broken into a million pieces and stitched back together.

Everyday I know I have a life worth living and I have a lot to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Last week the doctor took my blood pressure and told me it was 150/90.

That’s kinda bad.

Do you know what your weight is?     Yes.

Would you like to tell me?     No.

I’ll make you stand on the scale.     ….damn.

He decided he needed to do a full work up meaning vials and vials of blood and peeing into cups. right. because me peeing into a cup will somehow give him the answer that has been eluding him for so long. let me give you a hint doc, urinating is not the cause of my stress! well it is now but on a normal day it’s totally not.

How’s work? peachy.

and it was then he put his pen down and looked at me with that doctor look.

You know you are going to have to work to fix this right? Don’t get me wrong I think your parents are wonderful people but you have terrible genes.    …..yep.

And he’s right. diabetes runs very strong on my dad’s side and cancer on my mom’s. I’m not sure but I think that makes me some sort of ticking time bomb. and I get it, its time for a major change in lifestyle. I’ve already had gestational diabetes which can be prevalent in pregnant native women and a precursor for developing adult onset diabetes later in life. if you don’t change your lifestyle that is.

obviously this is not going to happen overnight.  and el doctore wants me to cut out salt and lose weight and he’ll see me again in six weeks.

Crap!

So I cut out Pepsi. I lost 2 pounds in a week. but it is hard to quit cold turkey. HARD. I had headaches. and was very irritable for a couple of days. and then it got better. and then I started craving. bad. that is the problem with “diets” when you cut out something completely your body and mind go crazy and you start to feel like that is the only thing you will ever need or want and you must have it NOW! so I gave in. I drank a can of Dr. Pepper. and I thought to myself moderation. I will not go overboard and drink it all day everyday anymore but once in a while is okay. that I can live with. and I felt better. plus I still lost 2 pounds!

and as for cutting out salt. well not really a problem there seeing as I don’t cook with salt generally and try not to eat a lot of prepackaged food or canned food if possible. so really I’m not sure where the problem is where salt is concerned.

generally speaking stress can cause major blood pressure problems and boy do I have stress!  even my stress has stress. wait is that possible? I’m going to say yes.

Because today I went to the hospital with my mom for her lumpectomy.

And outwardly I think I appear normal. I don’t feel any different anyhow. Maybe some extra worry lines.

So I can see how my pressure would be up, because I keep everything in without any outward emotion but my brain never stops. And the hamsters were doing double duty today.

We had a good outcome though today. The surgery went very well and the doctor was very optimistic. The tumor was removed quickly and easily and her lymph nodes were normal showing no signs of cancer.

So I relaxed a little. And in a few weeks we’ll have the results from the biopsy so until then I will concentrate on me for a bit. I think I need it.