Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Trick or Treat!

Sunday was trick-or-treat here (it's always the Sunday before Halloween, since at least 1977 when I moved here). Caleb was a Mad Scientist, Connor was Superman, and Calvin was an Archery Guy (NOT Robin Hood). They got lots of candy, and we're going again tonight, in a friend's neighborhood that does an organized night trick-or-treat. Pictures of that later, as there will be different costumes. Can't wear the same thing twice, now, can we?

Darnit, I didn't get pictures of the kids in their costumes last night. David had the presence of mind to get a picture of the mamas, though. I was a pirate, and you can't see them here, but I had some killer boots. :) It was quite cold and Connor only lasted for half a block. Calvin made it a bit longer, and all the older boys stayed out almost the whole time. We have TONS of candy!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Marathon Man

We went down to Chicago yesterday to cheer my brother in his first marathon! Connor and I slept over Saturday night (I got to watch part 1 of the season 3 finale of Project Runway) and my mom came down early in the morning with Caleb and Calvin.

Off we go to meet Peter at mile 8 in BoysTown! We walked over there, and it was a Par-Tay!

Yay! Eight miles down, eighteen to go! He ran the race with his friend Brian, who lives in Washington D.C. This was Brian's second marathon. They look pretty good here.

The night before the race he looked up his name online and found out there were 3 other Pedrazas running. Get this -- one of them was named Rolando (that's my cousin's name)! How crazy is that? (Pedraza is an uncommon last name)

As we were right by a watering station, the runners were just throwing the cups on the ground. Most of the time the cups still had gatorade in them, and we started getting splashed. Calvin told me, "Mama! It's raining Gatorade!"

After we left Peter at mile 8, we went over to get on the El, in order to meet him at mile 17. We took a quick break in a Starbucks to get hot chocolate. While we were on the train (with 18 million other people going to cheer for their friends and family), we got stuck in a tunnel. I guess there were repairs or something going on. Julie made the executive decision that we would instead go on to ChinaTown and meet Peter at mile 21. It's a good thing we did that, because just as we got off the train at ChinaTown, she got a text message that he had just passed mile 17. They still look pretty good here! Only 5 more miles!

We didn't get finish line pix -- it was just too crowded. But finish they did, in about 4 1/2 hours! Peter said that last mile was just agony. It stretched forever. But he kept putting one foot in front of the other and did it. I had a good time cheering him on. Hmm, I wonder if we'll be doing this next year???

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

October Iris

It has been so cold lately. This past Saturday it was so windy and cold; I froze watching Caleb's soccer OUTDOOR soccer games. brrrr!!!!

However, even with the frost each morning, I still have a few glimpses of summer and pretty flowers. This iris is blooming by the (broken) air conditioner. There are at least 3 of these flower stalks. It's quite pretty, no? Next spring I will have to divide it up some more, and plant it along the sidewalk. Then everyone that walks by can also share the last bits of summer. (I don't know what kind it is, my mother gave it to me. She said it's a double blooming iris: once in the spring, and once in the fall)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Finished Green Quilt

as always, click on any photo to see it full size

This weekend I did the final few inches of stitching the binding down on the green baby quilt. It's been washed and dried, and just needs a label.

I like how it looks, and I'd like to make it again, maybe in reds or purples. It's pretty large for a baby quilt (I think it ended up being something like 48 x 66), but it's just perfect for snuggling under.

Here's a detail shot of the quilting. Michele (the woman who does the longarm quilting for me) suggested the medallions in the corners. I chose a wool batting -- my absolute favorite batting to use. While I'm not crazy about the backing fabric, it's not bad, and gives the quilt a peaceful feel.

Whoo Hoo! This bumps me past 20 finished projects so far this year!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Simplicity 4076, View D

Not the greatest photo, but when your photographer is 7, you take what you can get.

I made this top, sans hems, on Wednesday night. It's Simplicity 4076 (view D), and has been cut out for a while, and after dropping Calvin off at gymnastics, I came home and sewed for the 45 minutes I had before needing to go pick him up. Yes, this top is that fast to make. I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out, and will definitely be making some more. I used a size 10 in the shoulders, swinging out to a 16 in the hips. I did a FBA, and then rotated that dart into the center front, where the gathers are. I did a cursory glance at the directions (I've sewn oodles of tees, I don't need no stinkin' directions!), and eliminated the edgestitching on the neckine -- that just ain't gonna work with those gathers.

It's too cold to wear this now (we had flurries yesterday, and I think the high today is supposed to be 47). I'll make some with long sleeves -- though I'm not sure about the belled sleeves in the pattern. Maybe. I also definitely want to do the twist top, and any top with the flutter sleeves would be darling for spring/summer.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Another Lunch

I couldn't resist taking a picture of Caleb's lunch today -- it looks so yummy!

Garlic mashed potatoes with beef pot roast and gravy, peas and carrots, a cheddar herb biscuit, and peaches. He'll buy milk to drink. The pretzels are for his morning snack. He said he's having a full course meal for lunch, and it would be funny if I could get a butler to come and serve it to him. :) He's so silly.

It's cold here today - and supposed to get even colder. They are predicting a high of 40 for tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Well, did she? Or didn't she?

.... get my sewing room clean, that is. :) Sorta. You can walk in the room, and the floor is spotless. It's vaccuumed and everything! My desk, on the other hand, is still a mess. My sewing table, with the sewing machine and serger isn't spotless, but it's clean. The ironing board is clear.

I did do a bit of sewing on Saturday -- just putting patches on Scout uniforms. I have some more definite ideas for my room, such as some bookcases on either side of the bay window.

Caleb and I need to start on his Willy Wonka costume. While I didn't accomplish all I wanted, I at least made progress (and I raked up all the thatch and leaves from the backyard).

Friday, October 06, 2006

Blogline Feed

Since I switched to the beta blogger, my Blogline feed was messed up. I emailed a bit with them, and they reset it. I don't know if that means if anyone who was subbed to my feed needs to re-sub, but just thought I'd let you know.

If you don't use Bloglines, go check it out. It's a great way to keep up with your favorite blogs, and if someone decides to have their blogroll public, you can find other neat blogs that you might not know about otherwise. It's easy to sub to this blog -- just click on the button in the sidebar. :)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Getting Back in the Groove

~sigh~ I'm trying to get back in the groove of sewing. Since making the christening gown, I've not been back in my sewing room. It's a MESS!!! I have been sewing, but only handwork. Halloween is coming, and Caleb has decided he wants to be Willy Wonka. We need to get over to the fabric store and find something to make the coat from. I have a top and 6 diaper covers cut out, ready to go, plus some quilts in progress. I picked up Amy Butler's new book, In Stitches, and want to do a few projects in there.

However, I simply MUST clean and organize my sewing room. It's mentally stifling to go in there now and try to work. I promise to get it cleaned up and organized this weekend. Hold me to it, ok?

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Ready for Winter

We are ready for winter! Yesterday I got a new winter coat for Connor, and today I went over to Target and picked up some boots for Caleb. Last year I moved the boys coats and mine into this back closet (it's right next to the garage door), and gave David the front closet (the man has WAY TOO MANY coats! It's at least twice as wide as this one, and is filled with his coats and leathers). I still had our mittens/hats/scarves in there, in a big container on the floor, but it was always a mess. Last week I came up with the idea of using a sweater organizer thing for our winter accessories (I found it at Target for $10). We each get a 'cubby', and hopefully this will keep things in order.

All that is needed now is a few more mittens and gloves. I'm thinking I might make a bunch of Easy Mittens from Timberlane Press, out of some black WindBloc I have. This way, when one of the mittens gets lost (as always happens, right?) I can easily make a new mate. I'll also pick up a few of those 'one size fits all' stretchy gloves. Those are perfect for just running errands, and I always buy black, so again, when one gets lost, I can still make pairs.

How sad is it that I took a photo of my closet, and that it makes me happy to see it organized? :/