Wednesday, March 30, 2011

As a parent we have many responsitilities:

I know we could sit here and make a list of all the things a parent is responsible for.  But, ultimately our goal is that of raising adults that contribute to society and lead full independent lives.  Throughout that process there are many good things, and many bad things. 

Today I had to do one of the bad things.  Axelgirl got her phone 'bag and tag'ged at school today.  That means she was caught using it.  That means, if they choose to enforce the policy, a parent has to come up after school is dismissed and sign for it, and the Dean of Student chose to enforce it.  Now I know there are a few kids who follow the rules, and there are more that don't.  I also know that no matter what I was told by the Dean of Students, the rule is not selectively enforced.  But we move forward.  I went and signed for it, and gave it to her at the track meet.  Still need to let her know what her punishment will be. 

One of the good things is the joy we can have embarrassing our offspring.  That was my goal today.  Today was the first 'real' track meet, a FR/SO one.  Axelgirl was participating in the 4X800 (they came in 4th of 5).  Now keep in mind, my goal as a parent here is to totally support Axelgirl in whatever (well just about whatever) activity she chooses to do.  There are limits of course.  These limits would typically have to do with resources (time and money being the big ones), availability, safety, and legal (this one has never been an issue thankfully).  We go to her activities and cheer her on, or whatever is appropriate.

Many parents also realize that embarrassing a teenager is a day to day thing.  What they like one day, they may not like the next.  It keeps us on our toes.  My wardrobe is always a source of frustration for her.  Some days I understand why, others I think I am dressed ok, and she still doesn't agree.  Today's outfit, I knew would be a source of embarrassment, and I chose to move forward.  So I am about to show the latest addition to my wardrobe.  It also shows the latest title I wear as a mom.

The sweatshirt is from Walmart, the embroidery design from Embroidery Designs/Dakota Collectibles

I tweaked the colors a bit, they were more primary colors in the original designs.  And I added a few swarovski hot fix crystals as well.  There were a few things I didn't like how it lined up on the design, and I am pretty sure I stabilized enough, but I am not sure.  I need to stitch out those portions separately.  I don't typically stitch out designs with this many stitches, but it went pretty smoothly.

Here is a picture of me in the shirt.  I can guarantee, you won't typically see many pictures of me on here.

I want to say I am very proud of her for doing track. She is doing this, and still skating multiple hours a week, and keeping up on her school work.  It appears as if her third quarter report card will show a 4.0 GPA.  For track, she practices 2 hours a day, 4 days a week after school.  She is skating about 5 hours a week, and supposed to run 5 miles on one day over the weekend.  She has 3 honors classes this year as a Freshman, so this all keeps her pretty busy.


Sunday, March 20, 2011


For those whose High School Spanish is as rusty as mine is, or never took it, Mariposa means Butterfly in Spanish. 

As mentioned in a previous post, Friday was MiniAxelgirls Birthday.  She was 5.  The plan was for Axelgirl (and us) to go to the family party on Saturday, Sunday I would take Axelgirl to the kid party.  Yesterday, she gave her the main gift, which is a promise to spend time with her and take her to the mall to 'shop'.

We decided to go with a Butterfly/Mariposa theme for the gifts today, as she loves butterflies, and we knew she would be receiving a doll she would name Mariposa.  Most of these items were made to match the theme.  Much of it was from items I already had a s well.  I think we spent less than $7.00 on new items. (this doesn't count embroidery files, and they don't count anyway).  Here is a picture of all of the new items.  The water bottle and spring themed sillybands are from Dollar General.

Quillows are 15X20 fleece, pockets are cut 6" square.  I have embroidered a  design on each of the pillow squares, then they are sandwiched together so no back side of embroidery shows.  The one for Mariposa has an M and a butterfly on the other side.  For her other doll, named Rapunzel has a flower and an R.  Not sure what the font is, embroidery designs are from Designs by Juju

Beaded socks.  I already had the beads and socks, so it is a pair of simple crocheted socks with little butterfly beads, and small round beads.  All beads are plastic.

Butterfly catching outfit.  Her mom came over and embroidered a unicorn and butterfly on a short set earlier this week.  This is my attempt at duplicating it.  Because the unicorn design was to big for a doll, I put the butterfly on it instead.  This is the same butterfly used on the hair clip and Mariposa's quillow. Outfit is from a Simplicity pattern for 18" dolls.  I did shorten the shorts about an inch. and cut over an inch to lower the waist, as it was REALLY high.    The shirt I altered the pattern slightly as well, and cut up a tshirt to have ribbing at the neck.  The butterfly net is an inside of a wooden embroidery hoop, a dowel rod, and some tulle.  If I have time, I will try and type up the steps for a tutorial if anyone is interested.

And of course, the clippie keeper from the other day.

I hope to get to do some other sewing this week.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Gift Idea for Little Girls

I wish were were still in the stage of PreSchool/Primary Grade Birthday Parties.  I think I would have had a new favorite gift.  This is part of the gift Axelgirl will give MiniAxelgirl at her 'kid' birthday party this weekend.  More on the rest of the gift to follow.  It is still a work in progress.

She loves pink, butterflies, and peace signs, and did I mention PINK!   Since we are going to both the kid and family party, I felt the need to have 2 different gifts.  One for each party.  Since I didn't want to go over budget, the one for the kid party is going to come from the sewing room  By some warped logic, I feel gifts that come from existing sewing/craft supplies are free, and that embroidery designs do not count in the cost of the gift, even if I purchase them specifically for that. 

I could have used a few of these when Axelgirl was smaller.  It is a clippie keeper from GG Designs.  This is from her Felt Stitchies  .  This is the first time I have used her designs, and I was pleased.  I do feel that I might be able to modify some designs I already have to do a Clippie Keeper in the future.  I did add the crystals just because.  They are swarovski hot fix, probably from Dreamtime CreationsThe clippie covers, bunny, and heart peace sign are also from her Felt Stitchies design.  The heart and butterfly are from Designs by Juju . Butterfly is from Itty Bitty Applique, and Heart is from Itty Bitty Applique Patches.  The butterfly was done to match the butterfly her mom did at my house to on a t-shirt and pair of shorts.  I did add the S in Curlz font to the heart.  All designs are stitched on plain craft felt, except the bunny, which is on glitter felt, and the peace sign cover, which was in my box of scraps.  Bunnies were Axelgirls favorite animal when she was little, and it was so cute, I just had to do one.   I have lots of ideas for more, but decided to stop at 5, since there will be more gifts.

I do feel that my trimming leaves a lot to be desired.  I also sewed the butterfly out on tulle, as I didn't want the felt behind it, and wanted to add some stability, but not have it show, but am not happy with it.  Need to think about this some more.
Clippie Keeper
 Close up of Clippie Keeper
 Woven Clippie Cover and Bunny Clippie
 Butterfly Clippie.  Need to trim the tulle some more
 Heart Peace Sign and Heart Monogram Clippie
I also feel the need to add, I am not connected to any of the websites, other than a satisfied costumer.

Monday, March 14, 2011

This March is different

Wow, today is the first day of Spring Break.  And you know what we woke up to.  SNOW!  Depending on where you get your forecast, anywhere from 2-5 inches is expected today.  A perfect day to stay in and sew, except we have many activities planned.  Axelgirl was supposed to skate this morning, but decided to sleep in, so we moved that to this afternoon.  Track practice (maybe), and a Dr. appointment are all on the calendar.  Then tonight Mini Axelgirl has her group class, and we like to go and watch.  Probably should check the rink by the Dr. office to see if it works better for scheduling.

Out my backdoor this morning

I am ready for spring.  I am not a big summer/hot weather fan, but do like spring. The good news is it will be 77 degrees on Thursday, so we are not shoveiling.

Sign that spring is coming. 

My real thoughts right now, are am I going to miss it.  What is it you ask?  The Spring Ice Show at the rink we used to take lessons at.  For scheduling reasons, we had to switch last fall, so we will no longer be participating in it.  It was a large production, 3 shows, over 100 group skaters (typically about 12 group numbers), synchro teams performed each night, along with solos.  For the last 5 years, I was involved with the costuming.  The first 2 years I worked with another mom and a coach and we coordinated everything.  The last 3, it was just the coach and I.  I planned, shopped, drafted patterns, sewed, applied trim, whatever was needed.  There were always a few moms ready to step in and help, but it was all consuming from about the beginning of March until the end of May.  I was responsible for all group number costumes.  Synchro teams had their own costumes, and Soloists were responsible for their own as well.  I always had to make a solo costume for my daughter

So my answer is yes and no.

Yes-I will miss it.  I will miss the creative process, seeing it through from beginning to end.  I will miss the sewing.  I was forced to make time for it, even if it was cheap fabrics, confetti dot, lycra, and not my 'style'.  Watching the practices, seeing the kids learn new skills.  Seeing the joy on the younger skaters the night of the first show. Lunches with other moms where we take some extra time to just sit and talk.

No-I will not miss it.  The time.  My family being put on back burner.  Sleepless nights.  Sending coaches emails in the middle of the night, because I had an idea.  I haven't maintained a garden in those years.  The complaints from parents and skaters because they don't like their kids costume, or how it fits (hey if you don't like it, volunteer to help next year-there is plenty of work to go around).  The poorly planned meals my family had to eat-lots of fast food.  Not being able to watch my own child because of a wardrobe emergency.  Depending on others for pictures/videos because I didn't have time.

So the answer is yes and no.  It has been part of my life for a while now, and it feels odd for it not to be there. But, I hope to do other things as well.  I was hoping to do some prep work in the gardens this week.  Guess I have to put it off.  Maybe I'll go buy some little pots and start some seeds?  Maybe I'll challenge myself to sew more during this time, what I want to.  Maybe it is time to step up Wee Care production.  I can think of lots of things to fill the void with.  But I will miss it.

Here are a few pictures from previous years.  Faces have been blurred for privacy.  This is from 2008 or 2009, when we were representing different types of dance.  Unfortunately, I do not have pictures from all the years, or even all of the numbers from this show.  I did add in Axelgirls solo dress as well.




Jai Ho
Techno Version of Swan Lake


The Twist

Various Solo Costumes for Axelgirl for previous spring shows.  I couldn't find them all.  Maybe I should use my 'found free time' to organize my hard drive.

Time to move on, and embrace the changes.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Still not much sewing

I still haven't been sewing much.  Just been too busy.

What have I done.  Let's see, Axelgirl started track, and is doing distance.  On Friday's the girls have 'spandex' day, where they wear spandex shorts.  The first week she wore a pair of purchased, plain black ones.  This week, Thursday night, about 9:00 I made a pair of polka dot shorts from scraps for her.  Sorry, no pictures  :)  I am sure there will be many more from the scraps this season.  They are quick and easy.  Now that I have made the first pair, I know what changes to make.

I did stitch out a sample of a design to do on a leotard for Mini Axelgirl.  Here is the sample.  It will be stitched on a red velvet leotard, with her name in pink on the back around the opening.  Design is from Planet Applique.  I think it is the first time I have ordered from them, and it stitched out well.  Her mom wants it for her to wear to her birthday party next weekend.  So I need to go do that.  Speaking of designs, Designs by Juju has a good sale right now.  Need to get my designs ordered tomorrow morning.  20 packs for $75.00.

I've been trying to find some smocking time.  Here is a bsy I am working on, this will probably be for Mini Axelgirl.  The design is just sort of evolving, based on a few I liked.  I knew what I was doing, then stopped working on it for a while, and didn't remember my plan.  So I am going to work from top and bottom, and make it work in the middle.  I'm not as thrilled with the color choices as I was in the beginning though.   I did thread some beads on crochet cotton to do some beaded socks as well.  I also have a bishop to finish and make a diaper cover to go with it for my niece.  Hopefully I will make progress on both this week.  Lots of little things, but no real progress.

I'm trying to decide what we should get MiniAxelgirl for her birthday.  She will be '5' and is stuck on the number representing the age.  So I'm thinking the gift needs to be related to 5 somehow.  And am looking for suggestions.  We actually need 2 gifts.  We are going to both her family birthday on Saturday, and she will get her main present then.  Axelgirl is going to take her shopping, to her movie, or some other gift of time for the gift, so she will get a gift certificate.  Sunday is her kid party, gymnastics themed, and that is where I am looking for something for.  I am thinking something along the line of 5 hair clips, 5 pairs of beaded socks, etc.  She did just get an 18" AG doll this weekend, so that is another option.  I did see some designs for ME hairclips here, and like the keeper for them, but would be expensive to buy all of the designs.  I also have never used designs from here, so wonder how they stitch.

So hopefully more sewing time this week.  Axelgirl is on Spring Break, but has track practice everyday, along with skating, so I really need to get my handwork together.  Hopefully tomorrow I can get some time.  Dad is going to take her to synchro practice, and we are going to see Gnomeo and Juliet as a family, but that should be about it.