Friday, May 30, 2008

Sew Crafty Friday: Romper

I've been 'finishing up' some projects which you've all seen already (like putting buttons on blouses) so I had to dig into my closet to find something to show today. This jumpsuit pattern is probably from the 80s--it has that style, anyway. I need to put elastic in the ankles and do a little finishing, then it will be done. I think it would fit a child of about 3 or 4 years of age. (I make things without anyone in mind...but there are always future grandchildren to consider. Maybe.)
Hey, here's another reason to love my new clothesline--it's a great place to hang things for photos!
Please visit Shereen's Blog, "Waiting for Him," and join in the fun--or just look!

Catching some Zs

No, not the kind that make you snore, LOL! Some blogs with "Z" in them: abundant cuteness --check out the beautiful bags she has made. Yummy recipes here, too! --tons of tips, 'cause being a mom (and dad) takes some creative thinking!

Th-th-that's all folks! Watch this space for a new blog least in the future! Hope you had fun! Y'all come back now, y'hear?

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Blogs with "Y" in them --adorable bags, other nice projects--and a cuter-than-a-button baby! --Nancy has over 100 sewing projects to show you, plus other goodies! --37 tutorials, say no more.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

X-tra funny

The photos in this blog are so clever and funny, that I hope they bring a smile to your face today!

Yeah, I know there's no X in there...but I really wanted to share it!

Monday, May 26, 2008

W Blog

Hard to believe I'm almost through the alphabet! I've discovered so many great blogs in my quest. I'll have to come up with another 'theme' just to get to do it again, LOL!

Check out this sweet blog. Momawake has made some lovely things, including some of the cutest doll clothes you've ever seen!

Why I'm keeping my husband

He finally hung me a clothesline!
I've wanted one since we moved into this house 14 years ago. I said to him: "You want to know a great way to save money? Put up the d*mned clothesline I've wanted since we moved in this house!"
It was done 2 days later.
One end is attached to the fence. Mike pounded an old fence post into the ground (I held it steady and prayed he wouldn't drop the sledge hammer on my head), but as you can see from the one photo, it wasn't strong enough. Solution: a piece of piping that came from the framework that once held an awning over our deck. He had to cut it to size, but it worked great. See, it's nice to have an engineer around the house...
That's me, pretending to hang things--I'd actually already taken most of the stuff down. Wow, things dry fast in the sun!
And that's the finished apron that I posted about a while back. I opted for turquoise sashes because they match and I had them on hand. I will tell you, though--satin ribbon does NOT stay tied very well.
So now I have my clothesline, and I'm in domestic heaven. And it smells reaaalllly goooood.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Playing tag again

Miranda tagged me for a Meme. Becky had also recently tagged me, but I'd done something like this already. But this is just a little different, so here I go:

(BTW, I'm having trouble remember what I did yesterday, and you want me to tell you what I did 10 years ago? Ha, ha.)

4 Things I Was Doing 10 Years Ago:

Okay, let's see--1998...
1. My youngest was 8, so my kids were 16,14,12 and 8 years of age. Mike and I were married 18 years.
2. I think I was working at a grocery store as a cashier. It was my first out-of-home job in years, so I'm not sure if that was the year.
3. My sibs and I and all the grandkids gathered up on my sister's farm in the summer to celebrate my mom's 75th birthday. Mom loves clowns, so all the kids dressed up like clowns and put on make-up for a family photo!
4. I was teaching religion class (CCD--Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, which is Catholic stuff) once a week at St. Francis of Assisi Church.

I really don't remember much about the 90s except raising my kids and being Mike's wife! (And writing, but not to much success)

4 Things I Was Doing 5 Years Ago:

Uhhh...2003. Okay, let me think.

1. That was the last time I sat and had lunch with my agent. She has since retired. She gave my name to the same woman who handles Meg Cabot (of Princess Diaries fame), who said she'd be my agent...then proceeded to ignore my every attempt to contact her. So if I ever publish another book, I'm pretty much on my own. (I'm working on a mystery, but don't hold your breath.)
2. I was taking pictures to feed my scrapbook addiction. A favorite one is of Mike teaching Nicky (now 13 years old) how to make his famous Sunday Sauce! (I'm still taking pictures and still scrapping!)
3. I went by myself to Ohio to visit my mother and we had a wonderful time together. I'm glad I went when I did because...
4. ...I was deathly sick in the second half of 2003 with some kind of stomach problem. Everything I ate made me sick, but even 3 days in the hospital couldn't find out what was wrong. I got the 'you might need to see a shrink' bit (only put in a more technical way). Then I switched doctors, told the new one how I'd lost almost 30 pounds--and he finally found out through an endiscopy that I had tears in my stomach. an ulcer. Like what they should have found with their fancy hospital equipment! He put me on Aciphex and within 3 days I was starting to feel normal again. It took a while, but I can pretty much eat anything I want now.* Ask me if I'd like to forget the latter half of 2003...

*BTW, the ulcer was most likely caused by taking a LOT of ibuprofen for chronic back pain. I still have the pain, but I learn to live with it.

4 Things I Did Yesterday:

1. I did a lot of blog-hopping. I'm so addicted it isn't funny. But hey, it's fun, and I learn things. And I figure, if my house is clean, I know what's for dinner and I remember to take a shower once in a while (kidding!), I'm okay.
2. Mike and I had burgers for dinner (the kids were all elsewhere) then went off to Big Lots and Joanne's. I actually resisted buying fabric, except for two remnant pieces that were half price. Got out of there under $30, which is miraculous for me. At Big Lots, Mike bought a kit for a clothesline--woohoo!
3. Worked a little tiny bit on my mystery novel. Probably wrote a page, but I'm not working against a deadline so who cares, right? Writing at my own pace is fun, like when I wrote my first novel 30 years ago.
4. Did a little sewing and a little crochet work, I guess. Mostly I just lazed around because I rarely have a Saturday off ! (I usually work for 4-7.) Oh!!! I planted 2 tomato plants! I only bought two because they were $7 each. I hope that, by starting out with really healthy plants, I'll have better luck with tomatoes this year. I swear I'm the only Long Islander who can't grow them.

4 Shows I Like to Watch:

1. Law & Order: Criminal Intent. Mike walks into the room, sees Vincent D'Onofrio and says, "huh! I see your boyfriend is on TV." I told him he should be happy I find Vincent hot and not some pretty boy. Mike is NOT a pretty boy...but he's sure my type, LOL! (He was awfully cute putting up that clothesline for me today...more on that tomorrow.)

2. Project Runway or Top Chef, depending on which one they are running. I love the creativity, but I can do without the backstage, backstabbing drama. BTW, is anyone else as surprised as I am that Dale went home?

3. Good Eats. Alton Brown is a riot. Michael and I used to watch it together every Wednesday night, but Michael has moved out and there haven't been any new episodes. Or have there? Does anyone know?

4. House--he's such a bad boy, but with a better heart than he'll admit. And Hugh Laurie is so immensely talented it isn't funny. Do you know he was one of the criminals in "101 Dalmations" and the dad in "Stuart Little"? And it always cracks me up when foreigners do "American" accents.

4 Things I Love to Do:

1. Go for rides with my husband. We usually end up in Northport just watching boats in the harbor and people walking by. Sometimes we get an Italian Ice.

2. Cook. I love to cook. I would rather get kitchen toys than jewelry for gifts.

3. Sew/Crochet--great creative outlets.

4. Go out to dinner with my family. It is so rare to get us all together that this is what I request for every special occasion that is mine--like Mother's Day.

Very Nice Blogs

These are my "V" blogs for today...because they are very nice, not necessarily because there's a v in any of them! --lotsa tutorials including a whole sloo of things you can do with fat quarters! cute stuff and a little on-line magazine, too (e-zine?), with neat projects!

And any of the blogs there on my sidebar!
Oh, and those gerbera daisies were my Mother's Day bouquet from Mike and the kids. Aren't they gorgeous? Can you believe the dark pink ones lasted two weeks? After the flowers started to fade, I took the bouquet apart and put the 'good' ones into smaller vases. I always say that red roses and purple tulips are my favorite flowers, but I have to add gerberas to that list, too! My daughter calls them "Happy Flowers"!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

There's a "U" in...

"The King's Missus." Hop on over and check out her wonderful projects, especially the cutest baby shoes you've ever seen!

Mrs. Jo has an adorable family--just seeing pics of her laughing kids makes me want to laugh, too. They have great smiles! So, go on and visit!

Friday, May 23, 2008

T is for...

"Tree Fall Designs." There are a lot of pretty things over there, not the least of which is two adorable little girls. I love the way their mommy took a pattern from Ottobre magazine that was meant to be made in knit and used a woven instead, with great results! I might have to try that, too.

Here's the link:

Please scroll down for my Sew Crafty Friday post today!

Sew Crafty Friday

Edited to add: I wrote this hours ago, and forgot to post it at Shereen's. Duh!

It's time for Sew Crafty Friday at Shereen's Blog! Hey, I know there are a lot of talented folks out there because I've found you via my search for my ABCs of crafty blogs. So go on over and join in the fun!

My crafty project is this blouse I just finished. I am very pleased with the fit, and happy that I cut out two of them. The other one is an off-white with roses on it. I usually have trouble with things falling off my shoulders because I made them big enough for my bust. This time, I was smart enough to cut the shoulders a size smaller!

This is Simplicity Pattern 4077. There is a long-sleeved version, too, so I'll probably make one or two more for the fall. Since I like the bodice, I might alter the neckline and finagle it a bit to make a jacket. We'll see.
The other things I did this week was to finish the pajama top I've been making and to put bias binding around the neckline of the dress with the yellow top. I chose pink for the binding since it matches the skirt and the sash. One of these days, I'll have my husband take a picture of me wearing it, as well as the turquoise and white dress I made a while back.
I made myself a libary bag, too. Just a simple tote with a heavy fabric on the outside that looks like a red bandana and ticking stripe on the inside. I simply measured around some magazines I'd taken from the library and worked from there. Maybe now, with my books/magazines in one spot, I won't be late in returning them, LOL!

I'll be back later with a "T" blog or two!
(PS--taking pictures in a mirror is difficult, LOL!)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

S Blogs times two

The first blog I want to tell you about is called "Sew and So" by the immensely talented Becky. You really do have to scroll down over there and take a look at the shirt she deconstructed and reconstructed into what she calls a "Doolittle Blouse." You will never believe it started out as a man's shirt bought from the Goodwill--except she has pictures to prove it! Becky is one talented kid (she hasn't hit 30 yet--to me, she's a kid. Sorry, Beck!) and you will really enjoy your visit to Sew and So!

Then there's "Sew, Mama, Sew," which is an absolute motherlode for tutorials--66 last time I looked! There are tips, lessons, sew-alongs, giveaways--well, if you've never been there before you'll feel as if you've struck sewist gold. Here's the link, enjoy!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

R Blog (WFMW Post)

If you haven't visited "Rocks in My Dryer, " especially on "Works for Me Wednesday," I just have to ask...what planet are you from? Honestly, WFMW is a cyberspace phenomenon. At least, it should be! You want to talk creative? Just check out the hundreds--I'm not kidding, hundreds--of tips and ideas our fellow bloggers post there each week!

And please read the story of her amazing trip to Africa as part of Compassion International, and organization that helps children in poverty around the world. It will melt your cold, cold heart.

Here's the link! (It's over on my sidebar, too!)

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

What didja think "Q" would be for?

Quiet (this house)?

It's for Quilts, of course. OMG, there are sooooo many nice quilting blogs! Here are just a few: --I love Linda's cat, Skyler! He reminds me of my Nutmeg when she was a younger kitty--they are both tuxedo cats! --cute stuff and tutorials, too! --adorable grandchildren, cute doggies, an amaaazzzzing sewing room (pardon me while I drool). --not really a blog, but a great place to read the latest about quilting and sewing and more

And don't forget to check on my favorite quilter of all, Susan at Blackberry Creek--see my sidebar for link!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Boys will be boys...

...even when they are 21 years old!

James (see sidebar for pic) comes up to me with a small cologne bottle. "Smell this." My reaction is, 'it isn't going to gross me out, is it?'

"I don't know."

So I bravely take a whiff. It smells like...


No kidding, my son found a cologne called "Dirt." And it really smells like the stuff I dig up out in my garden. (Happily, not like manure--I don't have that big of a garden.)

Jamie (his friends call him James) says there's a site on line where you can find cologne in every fragrance except gasoline.

He tells us as he happily heads out to the Cheesecake Factory for dinner:

"I'm going to be the cleanest guy ever who smells like dirt!"


P is for...

"Polka Dot Pineapple"!

You should see the gorgeous rag quilt Letti made--so colorful! And the addition of yo-yo's is just the cutest touch. She's done some other cool projects, too (love the fabric flowers!)

There are tutorials. The one for the jumbo yo-yo quilt is amazing. But I like the one where Letti teaches you how to make 'yarn' from a t-shirt!

BTW, I want to say 'thanks' again to everyone who commented on my dress last friday. Don't marvel--it's basically a t-shirt attached to a skirt, LOL!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Oh, boy, and "O" blog!

Today's creativity lies in being frugal. After all, it takes a creative mind to make good use of 'just a little.' You will find yummy recipes and tips over at "Our Red House."

It is pouring rain and gloomy here on Long Island. Kate has a recipe for "Easy, Cheesy Potato Chowder" that would really hit the spot this afternoon--if only I had potatoes on hand, LOL!

BTW, thanks to everyone for all the nice comments on my dress on Sew Crafty Friday! I didn't get back to check out the posts and was surprised at how many people responded. You're all the best!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

A Nice Blog for N!

Nice, and funny, too--that's Cindy Lou, who is more than 2...if you appreciate Dr. Seuss, you'll get the joke. This blog is fun to read, and Cindy does some nice work--even her 'mistakes' look great, to me, LOL!

Scroll down for my contest winners, if you don't know!

My winners!

I did this in a rather unscientific way, but it worked. First, I cut the comments apart and tried to keep them about the same size. Then I divided them up by category. If you asked for more than one thing, you got entered more than once, so don't worry! Then I threw each group of papers at my cat and dog. The cat is more cooperative, the dog just looks at me like I'm nuts. These are the winners that Melody Kitty picked with her nose:

Miranda of "Life on Hackberry Road" won the hangers!

Becky of "Sew and So" won the Janet Evanovich book!

Kristen of "One & Two Makes Three" won the dishcloths!

and WindyCindy won the Koontz book!

Congratulations to all my winners! I'll be contacting you on your blogs (or via e-mail if you left me an address!)

I'll be back later with my next ABC blog.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Another dress by me

Here is another dress I designed for myself. The top half is adapted from the free "Lydia" pattern I got from The sleeves are a little flairy, which is one change I made. I had to cut the front in two pieces, rather than on the fold, because I was 'using up and making do' with some fabric I already had, and nothing was wide enough to get both the front and back cut on the fold. So there's a seam, which I don't think you can see in the photo, but it's fine with me. The skirt is a floral seersucker (there I go with seersucker again--I love this stuff) and the ribbon around the waist is from a box of Christmas ribbon I got on clearance. I need to make loops to hold it in place. I also need to finish the neckline and hems. This is one I can wear to work because it isn't too short and it's comfortable.

If you want to feast your eyes on more craftiness, please visit Shereen's Blog, "Waiting for Him" for "Sew Crafty Friday!"

Mmmmm..."M" blog!

I've been hopping around cyberspace looking for cool blogs, as you know. Here is a nice one for "M"--

Mari has done some awesome sewing projects, even hand-sewn ones! The colorwheel quilt is amazing--I especially like the cat sitting in the middle of it in one photo, LOL!

Come back later for my Sew Crafty Friday entry!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

A Sweet "L" blog

Check out the cupcakes and the kitten at --so cute and sweet! Makes me want to break out the Wilton cake decorating stuff. And that kitten...awwwww!
There are so many nice things on this blog that I'm sure you'll love it. I'm a nut for tutorials, and she's got a few great ones--especially a cool fabric box and a cute ice cream cone ornament!

BTW, don't forget to enter my 400th post giveaway--see below!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

OMG, I'm 401!!!!

I didn't even realize I hit 400 posts with my "K" post! (See below!) Hmmm...gotta come up with a giveaway for that!

Okay, how about these:

Top: two child-sized hangers decorated by me.

Bottom: Set of "Patriotic" dishcloths, crocheted by me.


"Velocity" by Dean Koontz--hardcover

"Eleven on Top" by Janet Evanovich--hardcover

Both books are read but in very, very, very good condition!

Each of these 4 prizes is a separate giveaway, so let me know which one or ones you like! All you have to do is comment on this post. Please only leave one comment to make it fair for everyone. And sorry, I'm only going to ship in the USA. I will keep this open until Friday at midnight and draw a name on Saturday. Good luck!

Two Ks for the price of one!

My first "K" blog today doesn't start with "K" but has one in it...Bittersweet Punkin! I love this blog, and the blogger, too! Perusing her blog is like walking through a country store! Oh, wait...she has a country store of her own. Please check out the goodies Punkin has on sale at I bought the prettiest patchwork pillow and can say that I am one satisfied customer!

If you visit Punkin's blog today, you'll see a post about another blog written by her very, very talented friend "Kat." Here's the link: Guess what? She's got a 100 post giveway going on! Check out the sweet prizes--a lovely pillow and a gardening angel doll. Who wouldn't want a piece of handcrafted art?

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

J Today

Today's blog is "Joyful Abode.'

Sewing, recipes, tutorials, organization tips, etc.--what more could you want? (Except maybe for this perfect Spring day to last forever. I hope your day is as lovely!)

Monday, May 12, 2008

I like...

Incy Wincy for "I"! Hop on over there (I had to say 'hop'--she's growing frogs) and enjoy! Sam's little girl, Emma, is darling, especially in a pretty white dress her mommy is making for her! And Sam's also making a cool dress out of one of Emma's dad's t-shirts (yes, Sam says he told her it was okay!), which I think is a really clever idea!

Now, here's my Mother's Day Report: we all went out to dinner at our favorite restaurant, Catfish Annie's. We've been going there for about 25 years now. They've watched my kids grow up, and I can say the same for the family that runs the place. The little girl who used to help clear tables is now head waitress. It's not fancy--I don't do fancy. There's a fresh seafood counter on one side. The food is simple, but amazing. And reasonable! I got a twin lobster dinner with sides for less than $30, which is saying a lot for New York. 3 of my kids ordered scungilli--ugh. Scungilli, if you don't know, is a kind of snail.
My husband had softshell crab. My youngest had chicken. The older ones teased him about it, but Catfish Annie's makes amazing fried chicken, too. We really enjoyed ourselves. The lobster was luxurious (and I brought some home to make myself a lobster roll today!)--but the best part was having all my kids together for a meal. That doesn't happen often these days.

I hope you all had wonderful days yesterday, too!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

H is for...

Happy Mother's Day!!!!

I hope everyone has a day filled with love!

And while we're at it, H is for...

Okay, it isn't...but there's in 'h' in there and it's a really fun site! Lots of cool tutorial links! Enjoy!

Saturday, May 10, 2008


Is for "Girls in the Garden."

I like the way Lori combines different fabrics in some of the tops she made. I also love the little American Girl outfits with matching clothes for a little girl!

If I don't get on tomorrow...


Found an "F" Blog

And it's for

Fairy Threads is chockful of free ideas for sewing, crochet, beading and more!

Friday, May 09, 2008

A few things today

First, my "E" blog. It is Erica makes some beautiful things, and her wardrobe is nicer than anything you could buy ready-to-wear!

I also want to mention that E is for Etsy. Many of my fellow bloggers have Etsy shoppes. I hope to have one someday, too. (Dang, I gotta get working on that!) But I'd like to remind you that Etsy isn't just for finished handmade items. I have bought fabric, vintage patterns and buttons there, too! In fact, lately it's the first place I look for buttons.

And now on to Sew Crafty Friday! Why don't you pay Shereen a visit?

This is my first attempt at amigurumi. In fact, it's such a first attempt I don't know how to spell the word. Let me check...yeah, I think I got it right. I made an octopus, and I like the way she came out...even if it was a pain to sew on the tentacles. Here's the link:

You have to sign up, but it's free and there are a lot of cool crochet patterns. There's knit stuff in there, too, of course!

That's a bow on her head, just so you know it's a 'she.' She is now living on a shelf in my dining room hutch. My husband likes her, and he works at the dining room table. So she can be his mascot.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Not really a blog, but...

"Digiscrap Depot" is a great site for scrapbooking freebies! Every day, there are dozens of links to free downloads for scrapbookers. Here you go, have fun!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Found a new blog...and it starts with

C! What else?*

It is called Chica and Jo and is full of fun, creative ideas. They fall into numerous categories, including sewing, cooking and organization. They have some very clever ways of doing things!

*okay, I'm doing a creative blogs ABCs, but I already know I'm going to have troubles. So I, as this blog's owner and writer, reserve the right to say my letters can fall anywhere within a blog's title!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

B is for...

"Blackberry Creek." Susan visits here often (she's on my sidebar) so I'd like everyone to visit her at

She makes the most beautiful quilts! Honestly, I wish I could sew like that. Go visit her blog and marvel.

Her altered playing cards ain't too shabby, either! And don't forget to check out her book reviews on her sidebar!

Yep, Susan and her blog are awesome.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Sewing Blogs ABCs

Just because I having nothing to do (ha, ha, ha), I decided I'm going to post links to some cool blogs relating to sewing and crafts, in ABC order. The first one is "Artsy Craftsy Babe" which is just chock full of cuteness! Check out her little "Birthday Girl" modeling the sweetest, most cheerful sundress ever.
And there's a tutorial for adorable button flowers!
Go ahead and visit: you'll be glad you did!

Saturday, May 03, 2008

The apron, continued

I did some more work on my apron. As you can see, I tucked a hand towel into the waistband. It just happens to be the right colors.
The only thing left to do is the sashes. I only had a half yard of the red and white fabric and a yard of the kitchen print. I don't have enough of either to make ties, so I'll probably use some brown ribbon, which picks up from the print. Then I might put a brown bow to match at the top of the 'tie it all together' (yes, I get the pun.)

I don't have a sewing tip today, but if I think of one I'll be back.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Sew Crafty Friday

I don't have anything finished, but here are some WIPs. On top is a baby dress I'm making with the same seersucker I used for the toddler dress. It is for my friend's little girl who just turned one, and should fit her nicely by the summer. It has matching bubble pants (whatever you call those). If I have enough, I'm going to put rickrack around the bottom, about an inch or so from the hemline. The arms will be bound in red, and I'm pretty sure I'll be able to find some cute strawberry-shaped buttons for the back.
On the bottom is an apron I'm making. Can I tell you how much I detest doing gathers? Truthfully, I'll put pleats in things to avoid gathers. So this ruffle was a production for me.
I didn't buy these fabrics to go together, but they just do. Don't you love when that happens? And isn't that old-fashioned kitchen fabric a riot?
Please visit Shereen's blog and join in "Sew Crafty Friday"!