Sewing with the munchkin for Mother's Day

Life's been busy lately. Not in a bad way, just busy...to the point where when my son's kindergarten teacher sent home a note about how her last day of school is approaching quickly before she goes on maternity leave, and it dawned on me that I had not made a baby quilt for her. Eek! It was on my To Do list, I had managed that much, but it just hadn't made it to the top yet, so this weekend I bumped it to the top of the list.

Threading the needle like a champ

I also decided it was high time that I let my little guy do a little bit of sewing. He really wanted to be involved in the baby present for his teacher and when I pitched the idea of making a quilt together, he was totally into it. We picked out a pattern he liked, my

Xs and Os quilt pattern

, and got to work, picking out fabrics. He's always liked to play with fabric, from arranging form scraps on my design wall to helping me pick out fabrics in fabric stores, so it was a lot of fun to dig through fabric with him and talk about it. In digging through my novelty prints, we found a boatload of boy prints from Children at Play, Sarah Jane's first collection for Michael Miller a while ago, and a print from Castle Peeps that played nicely with it. Then we picked out some nice solids to balance things out, Kona Leprechaun and Moda Bella Sunshine, and I got to cutting. I did all the pressing and cutting, because he's only six, so I'm thinking a lesson on rotary cutting is a bit of a ways off just yet.

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We got started sewing Saturday afternoon, and worked on O blocks. Because my sewing table is so tall, I used some scrap boxes to raise up my foot pedal so he could reach it easily. We talked about right sides together, and keeping the fabrics lined up nicely, and even chain piecing. He had a great time and was super proud of himself. I couldn't stop smiling as I watched him progress...

First block done!

Not surprisingly, after a few blocks, he wanted a break, and if I'd managed to plan this gift far enough in advance, I would've set the blocks aside and picked them up at a later date, but since his teacher's last day is this Friday and he promised that he'd bring her the quilt on Monday, I kept working, just doing the stitching and flipping on his behalf. 

Having fun with block layout

I saved the straight seams for the kiddo, and let him go to town on them. He really liked the sound my Juki makes when it goes fast, but the super fast speed was a little much for him, so he kept his pressure on the foot pedal pretty light...until he was ready to clip the threads. He'd scoot his foot over to the big red button on my foot pedal and slam his heel on it, which he thoroughly enjoyed doing. 

Soon some tiny toes will be hiding under this quilt

We sewed the top together in record time, quilted it up and bound it, and brought it into school with us yesterday morning. His teacher was so thrilled, and I could tell the kiddo felt mighty proud of the gift we were giving. I'm so proud of this little quilt and what it represents. It was positively the perfect way to spend Mother's Day weekend! I hope you had a wonderful weekend as well!

Xs and Os quilt - his first quilt

Quilt Stats

name

: Miss Seymour's Xs and Os

size

: 36" x 48"

pattern

:

Xs and Os quilt pattern

by yours truly - newly

refreshed and updated

!

fabrics

: Children at Play prints by Sarah Jane for Michael Miller Fabrics and Kona Leprechaun and Moda Bella Sunshine

quilting

: simple meandering stipple in white (#2024) Aurifil 50 wt thread

Xs and Os quilt for the teacher - all finished!

It was a very Lego birthday...

The munchkin's big birthday party was this past Sunday, and I think it went really great. He says he had an awesome time at his birthday party and he can't wait to have another one next year. I sure can! Birthday parties sure can be a lot of work, but admittedly, I had a lot of fun working on this one.

Happy birthday munchkin!

The party theme was Legos, so we had lots of fun Lego decorations from the party store as well as a Lego crown that I made for the kiddo, using some fun Lego fabric I found on Spoonflower. I also picked up the Batman Lego minifigure shirt he's wearing in this photo on Etsy from a super fun shop called I Heart Bricks. They had tons of variety, from Ninjago to Star Wars and so on.

Lego cookies

We had the party at a local park, so the kids made good use of their two large playgrounds. We also had a brief scavenger hunt, where the kids searched for five paper Lego guys throughout the area of the park we were in, which was great until my munchkin ended up in tears because he didn't win. He snapped out of it when one of his friends consoled him by saying, "I don't always win, and it's okay," which was wonderful.

Find a Lego

For snacks, the kids had rectangular Club crackers with circles of Swiss and Cheddar cheese, as well as lots of ready-to-go snacks, like Pirate's Booty and Craisins. They also loved the Lego cookies I made, using some simple royal icing. The adults really enjoyed the Funfetti cake dip that I made and paired with animal crackers and Teddy Grahams. It was ridiculously tasty!

Lego Cake

I made the main cake for the party, a Lego cake, using some basic decorating instructions I found on the Betty Crocker site. The birthday boy was especially excited when he saw that the Lego knobs were actually marshmellows! The cake itself was one of my favorite cake recipes, the Barefoot Contessa's Beatty's Chocolate Cake.

Lego Cake - yum!

After cake time, the kids had some crafting time, with great coloring sheets from the Lego site as well as a scrapbook inspired activity, where the kids could glue their own hats, shirts, pants, and skirts to their own paper Lego minifigure. It was a great way to wind things down after all the fun.

Lego Party - Make a Minifig pices

Once we got the party cleaned up and packed up into the car, we ventured down to the beach area of the park and had a bit of fun running around on the sand and inspecting the plants and wildlife. It was gorgeous, until the mosquitoes started to take over.

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All in all, the party was great, the munchkin was a very happy, excited boy, and while it was great fun, I'm looking forward to getting back behind my sewing machine this week and working on my Juki machine cover! I hope you're having a great week so far :)

Q is for Quilt

I'm heading back to school today...to my son's preschool, that is, to talk about quilts. It's Q week at school, and well, are there really any better words in the alphabet that start with Q? I don't think so! My kiddo is so excited to have mommy come to talk to the kids about what quilts are and how I make them, and I'm excited too, because I know that I won't always get that kind of a warm reception from my kiddo.

Q is for Quilt

I'm bringing some fabric for them to pet, some simple patchwork in progress, a finished quilt or two, and some fun coloring pages so they can get in touch with their inner quilter! Later on today, they'll be making their own paper quilt as a class, which is pretty cool. I can't wait to see how it comes together. He's bringing in his baby quilt (my first quilt) for his turn for Show and Tell today, which he's awfully excited about.

SMBQ - Zoology Baby Quilt

In other news, I've been working hard on a few deadline projects that I can't share at the moment, but the good news is that one is nearly finished, and here's a sneak peek of it. Playing with these gorgeous Art Gallery Fabrics has been a lot of fun, as always. If you haven't tried Art Gallery fabrics before, you absolutely must. From the fantastically soft hand and drape to the gorgeous colors you'll find in their collections, you will be a very happy fabric hoarder/quilter once you give them a try! You can find Art Gallery Fabrics at Intrepid Thread, Stash Modern Fabric and soon at Pink Castle Fabrics as well. Have a wonderful Thursday :)

Phew, one deadline project nearly done

Our last week of summer

The munchkin goes back to school next week, for his final year at preschool before kindergarten. He's so excited he can hardly stand it! We've been busy gathering all of the things he needs for school the last few days, so we're making sure to spend these last few days of summer having a lot of fun. My mom has been visiting for the last several days, too, which has been a lot of fun for both me and my munchkin.


Yesterday, we all trucked over to the beach. We love going to the beach, especially the munchkin. Sand is his friend, big-time. He just loves getting covered in sand, and digging, too. He had a lot of fun with two dump trucks yesterday, pretending that one was a bad guy that kept dumping sand on the good truck. It was a gorgeous day for the beach, not blazingly, stiflingly hot like it has been lately, and with a lovely breeze. We all had a great time, and even saw a pair of dolphins frolicking near the shore. Naturally, I couldn't grab my camera fast enough to get a picture of them, but it was really fun to watch them splash and play together.


 

It's hard to believe that school starts a week from today. I feel like the summer positively disappeared in a flash this year. While I'm looking forward to the amount of "mommy time" I'm going to be getting with him in school five days a week this year, I'm also going to miss him terribly. I know for sure this year that he won't be tearing up on the first day of school, but I sure will :) Have a great Tuesday everyone!

Sometimes he just melts my heart

No one ever said that motherhood was easy.  Now that my son is three, he's especially challenging at times... but then he'll have a super sweet moment like yesterday morning that makes me forget all about the moments where I want to tear my hair out.  Yesterday, after breakfast, he grabbed a book, and asked very sweetly, "Mommy, can I have a quilt to read with?"  


I said, yes, and then he picked out my favorite quilt of the moment, and asked me to cover him up so he could read to me.  So darn sweet.  

Happy Mother's Day weekend to you all!

Happy 3rd birthday my little munchkin

How is it possible that you are three years old already?  Wasn't it just yesterday that you came screaming your way into our lives?  Where did the time go?


I can't believe that over 1,000 days have passed since you entered our lives.  It's hard to remember what life was like before you came along.


This year, you asked me to make many things for you, but for your birthday, you asked for specifically for a polka dot blanket.  Ask for a quilt, and a quilt you shall receive, my little boy.  I sure hope you like it.


This quilt was so much fun to put together!  I was inspired by both Sarah, with her stringy polka dot quilt, and Megan, with her crazy 9 patch quilt.  At first, I worried that I wouldn't have enough polka dot fabrics for a whole quilt of them, but sure enough, I had plenty - and a bunch to spare, too!  I went kind of crazy with the wonky 9-patch blocks.  I made a bunch of them, at first intending to make a twin size quilt, but I ultimately scaled it back to a 71" square quilt.






I think I'm glad I scaled it back to a big square instead of the twin size.  He's got a twin-size quilt already, and this will be a nice companion that he can drag around the house if he wants to snuggle with it on the couch or he can add it to his collection of quilts and blankets in bed.  On the bright side, as I finished the binding on this quilt, I started to feel like I finally gotten a good handle on the technique of hand-stitching the binding on.  I used milliners for the first time, and I must say, that made a huge difference for me.  They were so much easier to manipulate the way I wanted to.  Two thumbs up!



Quilt Stats
Name: A Legion of Dots
Size: 71" square
Fabrics: Various polka dots all from my stash, sashed with Kona Ash and Kona Ocean.  The binding is from Riley Blake's Colorful Chrismas collection.
Quilting: All-over meandering stipple.  I had thought about straight-line quilting this one, but time wasn't on my side here.  I'm a lot more confident with my stippling, so I tend to move a lot faster that way.

I'll be linking this finish up with {Sew} Modern Monday this week.

{Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge Creations

I love when projects come together easily

I started working on this wonky 9-patch quilt for my son's birthday this week, after much internal debate about what pattern to do.  I had way too many ideas and sketches for this one, and ultimately, I decided to go simple and started cutting.  Managed to give myself my first rotary cutting injury in the process, but don't worry, it's just a tiny nick.


I'm going to sash the blocks with two different colors, but naturally, I'm debating about that too.  These blocks are so colorful, I was kind of thinking about using a few different colors for sashing, to keep up with the rainbow effect of the blocks, but I'm not sure yet.  I really need to put this aside to make some quilt backs this weekend.  It's going to be tough to stop on this quilt, because I'm really in love with it...


I'm not quite done making blocks, I think I'll do one more set of wonky blocks, but here's how it's coming together so far.


By the way, this quilt is so far totally nameless...though I can't seem to stop calling it A Legion of Dots in my head...

Don't forget, the cutting instructions for the quilt along are up.  Stacks of gorgeous cut fabrics are showing up in the Flickr pool already!  Have a great weekend everyone!