I’ve had such a wonderful experience with the latest Sweet Goodness Swap. My amazing swap sister, Jessi, sent me a beautiful garland — the picture really does not do it justice. I only photographed a small section of it; it’s super long and just lovely. My package also included the cutest gift tags. I don’t know if you can tell from the photo, but they are cardstock layered on fabric and they are so special. It will be hard to choose what recipients will get them; I want to make sure they are appreciated! She also sent a tasty bag of chocolate that did not make it until today’s photo session. Jessi, thank you so much for my wonderful swap package! I love it all!
I made these monogrammed ornaments after seeing some similar ones on Ali Edwards‘ blog. They’re made with alphabet rub ons and clear glass ornaments. They were a little trickier than I expected. Luckily, it’s easy enough to start over — just scrape off and start again! I did find that my results improved when I taped each letter to the ornament. Also, it was much better to use my metal rub-on tool than the little popsicle stick that comes with the letters.
The holiday decorating is happening a bit slowly around ye olde Craft Addict abode this year. The boys got the tree up and decorated right after Thanksgiving but the remainder of our decor as stayed in the boxes.
Over the weekend, I tried to get a little more out and up. Putting the runner and place mats on the table was pretty quick and did a lot to festive up the dining room. This may be the last year we use these. I love them but they are dry clean only — not the family-friendliest linens in the bunch. I’ve seen next year’s Christmas fabrics from Robert Kaufman and the alternate colorway will be perfect for my house, so I believe I’ll be making some new table decor. Never done it before, so obviously I’ll have to give it a whirl and make some more spring-ish ones to use before then. It’s not just another excuse to buy more fabric, I promise!
Holiday baking has begun in earnest. In the past couple of years, I’ve made fewer types of cookies but decided to revert to the good ol’ days and make several varieties. I even made a banana nut bread, which I haven’t done in more than a decade (Honey doesn’t care for pecans or walnuts) and I’m itching to slice off a bit to sample. There are two more batches of dough in the fridge and I’m planning to make at least three more types of cookies. So far I’m resisting temptation quite well.
See what my little elf was up to while I cooked? Yep, she camped out on the bottom of the butcher block and ate up her soup. She loves soup and she loves to be in the middle of the action. Normally, she would not be able to sit there, as my Kitchen Aid stand mixer lives in that very spot when it’s not in use. She’s cute AND an opportunist! She was also quite willing to sample as many cookies as I would let her. Ah, my child, for sure.
I’ve been sewing whenever I get the chance but finding time has been a challenge the past week or so. I miss it! It’s such a stress reliever to cut and piece and sew. Luckily, I managed to squeeze in a little time over the weekend and whipped up this pretty little purse for my cousin. She is 16 (about four months younger than my oldest child) and loves the color tangerine and the combination of pink and tangerine.
I have to be honest: it’s not my best work. You can’t see the sides, where the lower pocket pieces do not match up. Or the pucker in the quilting.
You see, I had this brilliant idea to modify a pattern I’d never before sewn. I wanted the outer pocket actually quilted — with batting and everything. Nice in theory but the execution? Oy. By the time I had to stitch through all that batting and fabric to make the corners of the bag, I knew I’d made a grievous error in judgment. If I had more time, I would sew another and keep the screw up, even though the colors really aren’t me. *sigh*
I feel a bit lost when I don’t blog, like I’m leaving something just … hanging. I don’t like that feeling but there are just times when something’s got to give.
Oh, but that things I’ve accomplished while I’ve been absent from here. No pictures to show yet but I intend to make tomorrow a photolicious day. Included in this extravaganza will be the most amazing Halloween costume ever made for my 3-year-old daughter, as well as the fruits of my labor aka Bunny’s new-to-her bed and revamped dresser.
In the midst of all this wonderful busy-ness, I’ve also received some lovely mail. First off is the package from my amazing Swap Sister, Jessica. Not only did she send me yummy chocolate but she also sent me the coolest Halloween garland (photo tomorrow!). Thank you so much, Jessi! I love it! (And I suck because my package to her went out LATE, like TODAY. 😦 I promise to suck less for the rest of our swap time!)
Today’s mail brought a lovely card with goodies from another Jessica. Seriously, my life is filled with wonderful Jessicas who are talented and sweet and just plain fun! Thank you for my beautiful new words!
I’m participating in the Sweet Sister Holiday Swap over at Sweet Goodness Swaps and have been tasked with answering twenty questions to help my swap partner (and other participants) get to know me better. Enjoy!
1. Favorite Color: Blue. I’m rather partial to navy and turquoise, especially.
2. Chocolate Lover? Milk, Dark, White, or none of the above? Definitely! Love dark chocolate but I’ll toss back some good milk chocolate, too.
3. What is your favorite craft hobby? Right now I’m pretty heavily into sewing at the moment.
4. What is a craft/art hobby that you would like to start? I just bought two embroidery books and have some Hip Stitch embroidery kits I’d like to play with, too.
5. What craft do you NOT have an interest in or just not great in ( so your partner doesn’t send something you wouldn’t use)? While I’d love to bead, I’m really awful at it. None of my projects stay together!
6. Do you have any allergies? I have an occasional slight reaction to citrus, but it doesn’t stop me from eating it!
7.What’s your favorite part of Halloween? Decorating, candy eating, costumes, or something else? I love all of it, actually!
8. Do you decorate for Thanksgiving/Fall? Not really.
9. December Holidays–what holiday do you celebrate? What type of decorations do you like to put up in your house for that holiday? We’re a Christmas family and I love holiday decorations, particularly things with a playful/candy type of look to them (think Dept. 56)
10. Do you have any children, if so what are their ages, boys/girls? Boys 16 and 14; girl almost 3
11. Do you have any pets, if so what kind? The menagerie includes one dog and two cats, all named for vegetables.
12. Are you a reader? If so, what type of books do you like? I’m a voracious reader. It would probably take less time to tell you what I don’t read: murder mysteries, horror and Oprah book picks. Nothing against Oprah but I’ve just found all of those books so depressing. I read for relaxation and entertainment; I can’t deal with the heavy.
13. Are you celebrating a birthday or anniversary in October, November, or December? If so, what day and what is the occasion? My dies natalis is Oct. 18!
14. Do you collect anything? If so what type of things do you collect? LOL! There’s a reason I call my blog “Confessions of a Craft Addict.” That’s pretty much the only thing I collect, other than hairballs and dryer lint.
15. What type of things do you like to cook? Are you an appetizer person, cookie maker, dessert freak or a take out type of person?? I cook alllllll kinds of things. OK, maybe not so many veggie things but I try to cook dinner every night. Love making appetizers and cookies, cakes are great for birthdays, bread is yummy for all the time! Take out is fun, too!
16. What is your favorite scent? Is there one that you can’t stand? Love vanilla. Dislike most floral and patchouli.
17. What’s your favorite song? Too many to list!
18. What’s the last movie you went to see at the movie theater? I think the most recent Harry Potter movie. But I’m desperate to see the new Viggo flick and maybe even 3:10 to Yuma.
19. What’s your favorite Candy? Jelly Belly Jelly Beans — but none of the fruit ones (except green apple); I like the “less natural” flavors like buttered popcorn, sizzling cinnamon, Tabasco, chocolate pudding, peanut butter, blah blah blah …
20. Tea or Coffee or other? I like coffee in Frappucinos and my tea iced with Splenda.
I used to love to draw and paint and create art. It was fun and liberating when I was younger, a creative pastime that I could explore on my own time. Somewhere along the way, life really impeded that love, that process. “Art” was something I did when I was bored, doodles on random pieces of paper.
In the spring, I signed up for the ATC exchange at the Creative Mom Podcast. I thought it would give me an outlet for my inner artist.
I was wrong.
What I’ve found out is that creating a tiny piece of art on a deadline is paralyzing for my creative juices. I don’t know if it’s the size (2.5″x3.5″), sticking to a theme (rather broad), maybe that it’s going to someone else or just that it’s been too long since I’ve been “artsy.” No matter, each month I struggle to create an ATC.
There are no rules for ATCs; that’s one of the things that appealed to me about joining the exchange, the fact that I can’t go wrong. Still, I struggle. I procrastinate. And, eventually, I make something and stick it in an envelope, feeling guilty that my recipient will get a card two weeks late.
This morning, after the boys and Honey had left, with hours before Miss L arose for the day, I cut pieces of cardstock for making ATCs, determined to find my groove. As I cut, I gave myself permission to have fun. Why? Because I finally realized that I did not view creating ATCs as “fun.” Rather, it’s been an obligation, something I “had” to do versus “wanted.”
This morning, I made three ATCs. They aren’t perfect and they aren’t exactly what I thought they would be — and that’s OK. They are small moments of art, created by me, parts of me that I am sharing.
And I had fun.
My box has gone out to Megan, but here’s a little peek at what’s inside:
Oh, I am so excited about this cool Cupcake Swap! The fabulous Amy is hosting and I managed to sign up just in time. I have so many ideas for this one. I think my biggest challenge will be choosing just one!
I’m also hard at work on my ATC for the Creative Mom swap. I have a couple of ideas for the card but nothing I’ve sketched out. I really like the size of ATCs, although such a small canvas isn’t without its challenges. The May theme is “Reach for the Stars” and I may end up doing more than one since I have two very different ideas turning over in my mind.
Miss L and I are off shortly to do a little shopping and then a little lunching with friends during a noon outdoor concert. One of the local communities hosts them once a week during May and September; we make a playdate of it and always have a great time. I’m looking forward to taking my camera and snapping a few pics while we are there. Crossing my fingers that the rain and smoke forecast for today stay away!
Last week was the deadline to mail packages for Missy’s First Aid Kit Swap. Not only was it Missy’s first time hosting a swap, it was my first time participating. I was (am) really nervous, because I’ve never done anything like this before and wasn’t really sure what I was doing. Then the idea I had didn’t quite turn out as I’d hoped … *sigh*
Today, though. Today! My swap package arrived all the way from Norway. The amazing AnneHeidi — an amazingly talented quilter and crafter– put together the cutest, most thoughtful first aid kit ever. I am just over the moon! And on a sugar high, because she sent delicious Norwegian caramels and chocolate. See for yourself:
Thank you so, so much, AnneHeidi! I love it all!