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Sunday, July 28, 2013

Cowl neck tribal print maxidress

The last few months I have seen  MANY versions of the TRIBAL trend the last several months, but I still like it. This style is on the verge of being played out so I figured I'd better hurry and make my own version. Not that I'll stop wearing it once the tribal trend fizzles out. For me, style is timeless and if I love something I'm going to wear it at long as I like or get bored of something.
So far I've made my own takes on the tribal trend:  leggings, a mini dress, some tribal earrings coming up this week on the blog, and this cowl necked maxidress from some Girl Charlee fabric. I've had this fabric for a few months and really like it. I love the feel of this fabric because it's SO SOFT and buttery.

 I used McCall's 6489, a pattern I bought on sale about a year ago. Apparently, it's discontinued. Too bad. It's a great basic knit pattern.
I extended the skirt to make it a maxi.
McCall's 6489

It looks sort of Grecian!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Sew & Tell Saturday July 7, 2013

Welcome to Sew & Tell Saturday!
Like me, a lot of you are probably busy doing things outside and with your families. Just generally trying to enjoy your summer. Unless you live in the southern hemisphere where it's winter!
With beautiful weather outside, the last thing I want to do is spend hours on a really complicated project.
So I'm featuring three really simple but cute refashioned tutorial projects from last week for some simple summer sewing. 
Refashions :
Scarf to top from Domestic Bliss Squared

Vintage pillowcase turned into a skirt from Olga@ Kid Approved.

Boys t shirt to skirt from Little Miss Kimberley Ann

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Welcome To the Hotel California. Todos Santos, Mexico

On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair
Warm smell of colitas, rising up through the air

Up ahead in the distance, I saw a shimmering light
My head grew heavy and my sight grew dim
I had to stop for the night.
Hotel California Baja Mexico
There she stood in the doorway;
I heard the mission bell

And I was thinking to myself
Hotel California Baja Mexico
'This could be heaven or this could be Hell'
Hotel California Baja Mexico
Then she lit up a candle and she showed me the way
Hotel California Baja Mexico
There were voices down the corridor,
I thought I heard them say
Hotel California Baja Mexico
Welcome to the Hotel California
Hotel California Baja Mexico
Such a lovely place (such a lovely place)
Hotel California Baja Mexico
Such a lovely face.
Hotel California Baja Mexico
Plenty of room at the Hotel California
Hotel California Baja Mexico
Any time of year (any time of year) you can find it here

 Welcome to the Hotel California
                                                 Such a lovely place (such a lovely place)
Such a lovely face.
"Hotel California"
The Eagles 1977

And that was our brief but beautiful stay at The Hotel California in Todos Santos Mexico.
The last time I was here I was a new mom traveling with my new husband and baby.
This time we are back after our twentieth wedding anniversary with our two youngest children.

And although the Eagles have always been mysterious about the source for the lyrics of this song, all signs point to this hotel as being the source.

I've been coming down to Mexico since I was a small child and Mexico always holds something new and magical to discover for me.

 San Jose Del Cabo, a much nicer town than nearby Cabo San Lucas, in my humble opinion.

 A Tamarindo Margarita garnished with chili salt and an orange slice. Mmmm.....

Tres Gallos Restaurant, Cabo San Lucas

The Hilton Los Cabos.
In our handmade dresses.
I would like to thank everyone who stopped by yesterday to encourage me when I was having a small identity crisis after returning from my trip. Your comments mean a lot to me and I'm very grateful for your presence.
I'm feeling a lot better now and am trying to count my many blessings instead of focusing on negative things.
I am also feeling happy because Isabelle is coming home today! She has been in France for five weeks and I'm really missing my girl.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Blogging and the green eyed monster and going back to high school

I wonder if any of my fellow bloggers ever get tired of blogging?
I have been feeling that way lately. I have been blogging over three years now and still don't have  a clear direction about what my goal is or even what I should be blogging about half the time. I love making stuff and taking pictures but the whole business aspect, finding sponsors, etc. is just so hard!
At the risk of alienating my readers I am going to express some of my reservations I've been having about blogging lately.

I'm in several Blogging Facebook groups and to be honest, I don't  feel that comfortable bringing up my reservations about my blog in my groups as I already feel like the odd one out sometimes. I fear I might be a downer and alienate some of the members. Then they won't ask me to take part in their blog series' and pattern tours anymore because they will realize I'm actually kind of lame, and then I will fall further into blogging obscurity.

I also have a problem with envy. It seems everyone else has a pattern line, book, and fabulous sponsors except for me. Of course, I have no one to blame except my own laziness for not starting a pattern line, writing a book, and pursuing sponsorships. Maybe I don't want to be a professional craft/ sewing blogger after all. Or maybe I do.

 If you blog, you probably already know how exhausting it can be to build your online social media presence up. There's Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and the blog itself to update on a regular basis. There are all of the link parties to link up at, which can end up being very time consuming. Then there is the pressure to go visit blog friends and leave them cheerful, witty comments so they don't forget you exist. Sometimes it's just plain hard maintaining a cheerful attitude and leaving comments on others blogs containing lots of enthusiasm and exclamation points. Am I the only blogger who feels this pressure?

Then there is the annoying sense of failure I have when I visit a blogger who just seems to have so much happening, and has so many more followers and comments than little old me. And everyone is so ENTHUSIASTIC all of the time! It just feels sometimes like I'm always comparing myself to others instead of doing what I should be doing: Making things and enjoying writing about it. I'm way too old to be having these feelings that bring back all of my old feelings I had in the dark ages of my life: high school! I pretended not to care then that I wasn't popular and people thought I was wierd. I donned a tough girl exterior and became one of the bad kids. But I did care. I thought I had evolved and was way past all of that stuff. But blogging sometimes brings back those feelings of insecurity from those days. Like when a blogger you know online has an amazing month long series and doesn't invite you to participate. Or like during Project Run & Play when I was convinced the dress I made Gigi was the most beautiful thing ever, and I got voted off for it.

I have many blog friends who actually have something to sell, and think of their blogs as gateways to their online businesses. But I just can't seem to get my act together enough to figure out what I should sell myself. I probably should be developing a pattern line because I was trained to make patterns at school, but I'm just not detail oriented enough to follow through with it. Plus, I would have to learn how to use Illustrator which seems really hard! There was the brief stint as an Etsy shop owner selling upcycled cashmere baby sweaters and then the furniture painting business I started but didn't follow through with. Not to mention the teaching gigs I got but didn't build on. I need to figure out what it is I need to do.

All of these things have happened since I started my blog. Before that I was content being just a housewife and mom. But blogging created something new in me. Could it possibly be that I have developed ambitions and I'm not happy because I'm not pursuing them? Maybe. Should I keep blogging for fun and as a hobby or perhaps seriously try to start some sort of business? How does everyone else do it?  I'll be homeschooling my daughter this year so I guess I will just have to let things unfold as they may and as God wills. Maybe I need to pray about it.

For those of you who may have just stumbled over here and don't know anything about me, I can assure you I'm just having a self indulgent post here. I don't normally go on and on about myself like this.

But there there is the nagging feeling of guilt in the back of my head that I'm wasting my time blogging. That I'm being a narcissist and neglecting my family. That I'm doing all of this for the attention of the world outside. That I have an unhealthy need for attention.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Sew & Tell Saturday 7/20/2013

Welcome to Sew & Tell Saturday!
Sorry I haven't been able to visit anyone this week.
Real life was calling.
Yesterday we got back from a weeklong trip to Mexico.
It was an up and down trip with beautiful beaches as always in Mexico, and a trip to the emergency room for Lily who almost choked on a chicken bone that was in her enchilada. It came out on its own when she gagged on the long camera the doctor had going up her nose to see down her throat. Thank God they didn't have to operate. But what a night of fretting and worry.
Then Gigi got stung by jellyfish when we went snorkeling. The lifeguard sprayed some Windex of all things on her stings, and the swelling went away. And just after we drove away on the highway an 8 foot wooden crate fell off the back of a truck right in front of us. Thank goodness my husband is a trained driver and he swerved over way quicker than I would have!
We  had come to Mexico to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary and to pay some taxes on a piece of property my husband got in a settlement years before. It had been 19 years since he paid the taxes and the last time we visited the town so we weren't sure if the property was even still ours or not. It's just a tiny little plot but at the beach, and it's way out in the middle of nowhere.... miles down a dirt road and there are bulls all over the place. So after a little pleasant negotiations at the tax office we managed to get the years late tax bill  WAY down....just another trip to Mexico!
I'm hoping to use it for a dowry for one of our daughters someday... 5 bulls and a piece of land in Mexico. ; )
 I haven't been doing much sewing lately, but I'd love to see what you have been up to!
But first, some featured sewing projects.

Dresses this week!

Around The World In 80 Days Dress and necklace by Welcome to The Mouse House.
Lula maxidress from Stitch It Up.

Sleeveless Lady Skater from Siestas & Sewing.
Thirty something Birthday dress from House of Pinheiro

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Cottage Mama Pattern Tour

Welcome to my stop on the Cottage Mama Pattern Tour!
Today I'm sharing my version of the Daphne wrap dress / top and the Skip & Play pant / capri patterns from The Cottage Mama.
Timeless Classics For Children..
Lindsay's patterns are available in the traditional paper form and now in a PDF format. Lindsay of The cottage Mama also has a new book coming out in October called "Sew Classic Clothes for Girls: 20 Dresses, Outfits, and Accessories from The Cottage Mama' " and she will be taking preorders on the book starting next month.

We were driving down the road and saw some beautiful sunflowers growing on a farm. It was the perfect place to take some photos of this little summer outfit I made for Gigi.
She's going through a phase and wants to wear pants with everything. No shorts or capris, they must come to the ankle!
I wanted to make the capris, but I knew she would fuss about not having her ankles covered.
Maybe I am indulging her too much but at least I know she will wear this outfit!

One lesson I've  learned since becoming a stepmom then having four kids over the last twenty years is you have to choose your battles.
Giving my children freedom when it comes to things like picking out their own clothes is just one of many things that gives them a sense of independence.
The top is a little big. I probably should have cut a size 3 instead of the 4, but there's room to grow.
This was a very easy pattern for me; well written and photographed, although I didn't really read the directions too closely. I just like to look at the pictures on pattern instructions. I'm too impatient to follow most written instructions.
The flowered fabric is from Joann's . The polka dots were from a garage sale.
The crocheted shoes are from The Gap.
Ooooh... rolly pollies!
Little backs are so cute!
Sunflowers always remind me of children. 
Thanks for stopping by!
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