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I am a wife to an amazing guy and a mom to five fantastic kids. I have four boys and one girl. Keeping up with this bunch on a day to day basis makes me feel like a zookeeper, and these are some of my ramblings.

Monday, September 28, 2009

I haven't kept this up in a while because I haven't had any spare crafting time on my hands. Things were hectic with back to school, ex issues, and other such things...

I decided that a blog limited to only sewing and crafting was cool but when I don't have much time to craft then I felt odd about posting random thoughts or whatever on a crafting blog; hence, I decided to start a new blog just for me that will include all of the random things that I encounter in life. :) When I do sewing or crafting projects I will still update them here, but for now, it would be great if those of you that follow me would move on over here:

http://the-zookeeper-ramblings.blogspot.com/

Don't forget to sign up to follow me!

Saturday, August 15, 2009


This has been kind of a stressful week so the creative juices have all but dried up. I'm hoping to get back in the swing of things this week and make a few things.

I did, however, complete the Susan G. Komen walk last weekend after several blisters on my feet (owww) and a mostly uphill course pushing a double stroller (ughhhh) in 90-some odd degree weather (blechhhh).

I've included a few images from the day - thanks to my friend Sherri for taking them since I spaced and walked out the door without the camera. :) Liam is not a breast cancer survivor like the hat says, by the way, he managed to bat the big baby blue eyes at a lady and she handed over her hat. lol
















More blogs to come next week but for now enjoy the pictures!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Winner!!

Michele Z is the winner of the pillowcase dress for making a donation to the Susan G. Komen Foundation! I will get the dress and a set of spare ribbons packed up today and sent out this weekend. Thanks to a few others that made generous donations also!! I'm really excited to be walking this weekend to support this great cause!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

If you've been following the blog at all, you will know that I hate cancer. This dreaded disease stole my dad from me way too early and definitely stole a fantastic grandpa from my kids. It has also affected my grandmother who was a breast cancer survivor who ultimately ended up passing at the ripe age of 84 from heart disease, an aunt, great-aunts and several others.

Around a year ago I got a phone call from one of my best friends. Sonya is a year younger than me (I'm 36) and to receive the news that she was diagnosed with breast cancer was both horrifying and a huge reality check. This disease does not just strike the elderly or infirm. I am, however, thrilled to report that Sonya has fought cancer like a true champ. She had her ups and her downs but through it all kept on plugging. This past Friday she was admitted to the hospital for her reconstructive surgery (yay for new boobs!!) and I am going to see her this evening. This reaffirms my hopes and prayers that cancer cannot steal away all of those I am close to in my life.

A lady at the church I attend recently emailed me to ask if I would like to join the church team to walk in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure on August 9th and my answer was a resounding, "Absolutely!"

"How does this tie into the sewing blog?" you may ask... Well here's the answer:

In honor of pink, I have this adorable pink and white gingham fabric with daisies on it. I made 2 pillowcase dresses out of it, of course one for Miss Sassypants (she just wouldn't understand if Mommy was making a dress for someone else and not her too) and someone else who has a Miss Sassypants in their life or a niece or grandbaby...doesn't matter, it's all going to a good cause.

I am adding the link to the Southwood UCC Fundraising Page. If you are willing to donate even $10 and put a comment in my blog I will put all of the names in a hat and have Miss Sassypants draw one out and you will have the opportunity to have a dress all in the name of a fantastic cause. Here is a picture of the dress:



And here is Miss Sassypants modeling hers. Here's my infomercial impression: "And for the low, low donation of $10 for a wonderful cause you could put a smile on the face of a little girl too!" LOL

The dress is made out of cotton fabric. I'm a beginner at sewing so I'm not promising perfection but they are very well made and should hold up well to washing (just take the ribbons out before you wash - they slide right out). I will mail the dress to you at my own expense (well, my hubby's expense, lol). Sizing is ambiguous for pillowcase dresses. Miss Sassypants is a 2T and you can see the fit on her. She is kind of a petite little thing so I would estimate the dress would fit anywhere from an 18M to 3T. If your Miss Sassypants is bigger than this, they also make adorable little shirts and should work as a shirt up to a 6.


Donations/comments accepted up through Wednesday, August 5, 2009 at 7:00 pm CST and then I will put the names in a hat and let Miss Sassypants draw one before she goes to bed. Winner will be notified either that night or the next morning via email and I will send hubby to the post office no later than 5:00 pm on Friday, August 7th.

Ready?? Set... Go!! Here's the link:

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Miss Sassypants was quite excited the next morning when she got up and had a new Dora dress. As predicted she sat down in front of the TV with her little brother and watched Dora. Of course the "dolling up" couldn't just stop at the dress. She accessorized with beads and Mom's sunglasses. Here she is in all her divalicious glory:


Of course we couldn't just be satisfied with the dress... A little while later she said, "Mommy, you make me a purse to go with it?" (Big sigh inserted here)

I'd never made a purse before. I looked around online and there were several purse patterns but I just wanted a little purse for a little girl. Nothing fancy, no zippers or buttons or anything beyond my beginning sewing skill level. I couldn't find anything to suit my taste (or skill level - maybe lack thereof is a better description) so I grabbed a piece of printer paper, folded it in half and fashioned my own.


Every purse needs a liner at least so I cut my pattern a little smaller and made a liner to go inside also. Plus, I know how Miss Sassypants is and Purse+No Liner = Bits of thread strung everywhere to get caught in the vacuum. Not a good plan.

Here it is before the final sewing after I put the lining inside.

It was kind of small to fit around the sewing machine base to sew around the top edges but I made it work.
Here's the finished purse...now on to a strap. I considered making one but naptime was getting shorter and I wanted to have it done by the time she woke up so I figured a simple ribbon would suffice.
This is kind of a crummy picture but you get the general idea.

When she woke up from naptime, we went out to the porch and her immediate reaction was "Oh Mommy, you made me a purse!!" I managed to catch the look of happy surprise on her face. Pardon the messy hair, naptime is rough on 2-year-olds. :)
Here she is posing with the final product.
I think I may have done myself a huge disservice, however. After playing with the purse for a bit she said, "Now Mommy you make purses for ALL my dresses." (Insert bigger sigh here)

Happy sewing!!

Monday, July 27, 2009

I love the quiet of the evening especially when a thunderstorm is rolling in.

The oldest is spending the night with a friend and the rest tucked in and snoozing for the night. Before they went to bed I started pulling out the sewing equipment and immediately Miss Sassypants interest was piqued.

"Oh Mommy, are you going to make my Dora dress?" OK, Dora dress coming right up. Just call me the Mom of Short Order Sewing...

After everyone was tucked in nice and snug, the thunder started...As long as the electricity stays intact from the storm, it's going to be a fantastic evening. Just the sounds of thunder, raindrops and the hum of the sewing machine to break the silence.




I am going to have one happy 2-year-old in the morning. She can sit and have her snack with her little brother and watch Dora the Explorer in her Dora dress.

I think next I'm going to attempt a matching purse for the dress; however, tonight I'm going to go snuggle in with the husband and listen to the rain before falling asleep.

Happy stitching, everyone!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

OK this is a subject off the beaten seams of sewing.


I hate cancer. Did you get that? I hate, hate, hate cancer! I lost my dad to cancer a little over a year ago and various other family members throughout the years to this dreaded disease. Thankfully cancer does not win out every time and I'm happy to say that I have a great friend, Sonya, who is a breast cancer survivor and doing wonderfully! She is getting ready to go through her reconstructive surgery process this week, so everyone keep her in your thoughts and prayers during this survival achievement.


My neighbor across the street is truly an inspiration to me. She is a single mother of four young children who had been ill for a couple of years before finally being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. She began her treatment shortly after we bought the house across the street from her and became friends and our children are great friends also. Unfortunately, her treatment has not been very successful to this point (her cancer is now stage 4) and she came out the other night for one of many of our "sidewalk chats" to let me know that soon she will be admitted to the hospital for a month to undergo a more intensive type of treatment. During the course of our discussion she said that she has been upset over the fact that she has no recent pictures of her and the kids to take with her to the hospital. I said, "Well, then let's just take some."

Let's take a look at a few pictures that define family love and a strong single mother:

What a beautiful family...I love black and white shots too.







Of course we had to do a couple of fun ones. Getting the kids situated for this one was WORK. :)





Trying to get some of the sillies out so we could get some good smiles.














This was one of the "better smiles" I got out of this little guy.





















Mom and middle son after persuading him to take his glasses off...they kept giving a glare.



Check out these two beauties...




The oldest is so proud and protective of his mom and it really shines through in this picture:


I love how the littlest one is snuggled up tight to his mom's shoulder here:


What a beautiful family...


Didn't they turn out great?? What a beautiful mom and great kids! Thanks to them for letting me take these and share in the love. I'm by no means a pro but as photogenic as these guys were, there wasn't much I could have done to mess them up. :)

Now everyone now take a minute and say a small prayer to whatever power you say your prayers to or at least take time out for a positive thought for my neighbor and her kids as they continue to go through this fight.

And let me just say one more time.....I HATE CANCER!!



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