In 2011 when we moved from Boston to Los Angeles we initially thought we would be taking a road trip across the country. So I had decided I needed a hand sewing project to keep me occupied. Laurie from Dresden Lane had just taught us how to do paper piecing and so I decided to do a scrappy hexagon quilt (my original post from 2011 is here). Several people donated their scraps since I didn’t really have any at the time.
We ended up flying to Los Angeles instead of driving and so, three years later I haven’t made much progress on this project
(yes, this is all I have managed to sew together…)
It has been sitting on my sewing table for this entire time and I have to admit I’m a little sick and tired of looking at the ziplock bag I keep the scraps in. So, I’m retiring it to my scrap bin for the moment. I’m not sure if I will ever pick up this project again in the foreseeable future, but it’s sure nice to have some space on my sewing table.
Mila is finally growing lots of hair. It is so long in front if we don’t put it back, it hangs into her eyes. We haven’t decided yet if we want to cut bangs or keep pulling it to the side. So, in the meantime, we’re putting it in little rubber band ponytails. I think it’s pretty adorable…
When I opened the package of little rubber bands we had an immediate mess. So, naturally, I had to sew a little pouch to store them. I went back to the same trusty pouch tutorial from Noodlehead that I have made multiple times.
I got this material at one of my baby showers and I think it’s from JoAnn Fabrics. I love it!
Now I’ve started thinking about making pouches for all sorts of things… I think my nesting urge is starting to kick in.
I recently decided I needed a planner. I haven’t had a planner for many years. In college I LOVED my academic calendar. I loved making lists and seeing what was coming my way. Now, I have a small monthly calendar at my desk at work and the calendar on my iPhone. In general, I only use my iPhone calendar to send notifications to remind me to move my car on street sweeping days (to avoid accumulating expensive LA parking tickets), to send me birthday alerts, and to remind me which Fridays are pay day. Other than that I haven’t been overly consistent.
I also have not been able to transition to a digital TO DO list. I think I have tried every app available and I have never been able to stick with any of them. Because, let’s face it, there is really nothing more satisfying than crossing something off your list. And it just has to be done by hand.
I’ve been catching up on my blogs since I’ve been at home resting (and growing baby), and read IHeart Organizing’s blog post on printable planner inserts and started to get excited about going back to an old school paper planner.
So then, I started searching different blogs to look for reviews of the perfect planner (I mean, if I’m going to do it, I’ve got to do it right, right?). I came across several bloggers who love the Martha Stewart discbound planner. However, right now, the only one available is black leather and I wanted something more colorful.
So, I kept looking and found the Arc Customizable Notebook, which is similar to the Levenger Circa Notebooks (but much more affordable). I love the discbound planners because you can change things around to be exactly how you want them. You can even decide how big you want the discs to be (which makes your planner thinner or thicker). And maybe my favorite thing is how flat it lies when it is open.
I picked out a teal leather cover- and how great is it that it is quilted ? I got the 6 3/4 x 8 3/4 inch size which holds “half letter” size paper.
The next thing I had to do is try several different pens to see if they bled through the paper or not. And, of course, the winner was my favorite pens/markers of all time. I originally bought these in Boston at Porter Square Books, but you can find them on amazon as well. They are called Staedtler Triplus Fineliner Pens — seriously, are the colors and the package not totally awesome?
Unfortunately (or actually fortunately), they didn’t have any calendar pages available to put in my planner (I thought they would since it is the beginning of the academic year, but, nope). So, my awesome husband is helping me create custom calendar and planner pages to put into my new planner. I’ll update you on these soon. But just to warn you, they’re awesome. And they are exactly how I want them (since I have my own personal designer).
The ironic part about this all is that I don’t really have much to put in my planner since my main job is growing baby right now, but I know that will all change very quickly. And then I will be so happy to have my perfect planner.
I’m 25 weeks pregnant and am officially incubating full time. This pregnancy started out pretty low key. I hardly had any morning sickness (as compared to little Miss Mila), which is how I actually knew we were going to have a boy this time– always trust a mama’s intuition! Near the end of my first trimester my ob actually said to me, “You’re acting like a normal pregnancy”. It was one of the best things I could have heard.
But not too long after that, my lupus decided to start acting up. I started getting pericarditis (inflammation of the lining of my heart that causes chest pain), joint pains, mouth ulcers, fatigue and even started losing my hair (hey! you’re not supposed to lose your hair during pregnancy!). So, I started taking high doses of prednisone. But after a month, things weren’t calming down. So back comes the azathioprine. I was less scared about adding all of these “don’t take during pregnancy” drugs this pregnancy since I took them while pregnant with Mila, but still definitely nervous about the fact it meant that my lupus was active. Second trimester miscarriages are much more likely with lupus, and pre-term labor is also very common with up to 50% of lupus babies being born prematurely. With Mila I went into pre-term labor in the middle of a morning clinic at 31 weeks pregnant. Luckily they were able to stop the labor and I went home on rest and she stayed in to grow until 37 weeks.
For the last month my ob has been suggesting I take a break from work and I have been resistant. I kept asking for a few more weeks to see if things would get better. But they weren’t getting better and I haven’t been able to decrease my medications. I was so exhausted. So, this week at my appointment, I agreed to make growing our little boy my full time job.
I think this is one of my favorite finishes of all time. It is definitely not the most complicated quilt I have ever sewn. In fact, it’s probably the easiest.
When Mila outgrew her newborn and 0-3 month onesies, I set them aside to make her a baby quilt. I cut out 5 inch squares, and for the most part, was able to get two squares per onesie (one from the front and one from the back). She was a small baby!
Because her onesies were a knit material, they had a tendency to stretch, so I ironed a thin interfacing to the back of each piece for stabilization.
I used a nice, soft flannel backing that I bought at JoAnn Fabrics. I wanted this quilt to be really lovable so I decided to quilt it with yarn ties rather than machine quilting. For the binding I used a hot pink jersey material. Quilting cotton just didn’t feel right (as there isn’t any in the quilt itself) and I was afraid that flannel wouldn’t be sturdy enough.
It’s so fun because every single square reminds me of Mila as a newborn. Mila sleeps with this quilt in her crib and I can already tell it’s her favorite too *wink wink*.
It’s been a really long time since I blogged. I’m definitely busy working full time and being a mama. My little girl is already 9 months old. She’s on the move, so there aren’t any slow moments around here. After a full week of work, I find myself wanting to nap when she naps on the weekends- which is cutting into my sewing time. My other problem is that my sewing table is still in her bedroom. My mind is definitely full of ideas and quilts I want to make, but for now they are living only as ideas in my head.
We’ve been lucky to have a really gorgeous, warm winter here in Los Angeles.
About a month ago, I finished Mila’s first quilt (I think I started this quilt before she was born). I wanted something to match her pink chevron rug and crib skirt.
I cut half square triangles out of various gray prints and then randomly sewed them together in a chevron. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.
I have HORRIBLE pictures of the Christmas stockings that I just made. It’s too bad because they look awesome in person.
I made three of them, one for each of us. For Mila’s I used fabric from the super cute line Hip Holiday by Jospehine Kimberling. The other two stockings both have pieces from Brr Polar Bear Christmas (I can’t find it for sale online anymore).
I followed the falling flakes stocking tutorial by imagine gnats, and altered the top of the stocking so it had a binding. They turned out a perfect size and I love how they are quilted. Maybe next year I can get a better picture of them.
I’ve been pretty lucky with online fabric shopping. It’s pretty infrequent that I get fabric that I don’t like. Recently however I bought a few charm packs of Moda’s Summersville Spring and some half yard cuts of the material. When it arrived, I might have furrowed my brow a little… but then I thought that I might like it better once I sewed it up.
I still find it difficult to sew with a baby in the house, but this past month it’s become remarkably easier! She now has a regular morning nap (and usually an afternoon one as well) which allows me to get some sewing in. However, I wanted to sew a simple quilt because I knew the sewing would be in smaller chunks of time.
I’ve been wanting to do a simple HST (Half Square Triangle) quilt so I started by cutting the charm packs in half. But then, I didn’t really like how it looked.
So, I decided to cut them in half again to make Hour Glass squares. But I still don’t really like how it looks.
I am just not loving this quilt.
I think this might turn into a little lap quilt for the kitties to sleep on since they have almost worn out my Habitat quilt. I got a new sewing machine recently (there will be a whole post about sewing machine drama) and decided I will use this quilt to practice some FMQ (free motion quilting) since I don’t really care about the quilt too much.
This is my last month at home with Mila. I took a 6 month leave of absence from my job to stay home with her. Every single day is so precious and I am getting very sad that this time is coming to an end. My first month back, I am fortunate to only be working half days, which should help with the transition. In February life will be back to complete craziness. I’m so thankful my closest friend in LA works down the hall from me and is navigating the working mom thing as well. It will be nice to have someone who really understands close by.
This past month has been wonderful. Mila is really developing a personality and it’s just a delight to be with her. She smiles and laughs and SQUEALS!! She doesn’t roll over yet, but is getting really close. She is also getting really close to sitting up on her own. And just the past few days she started showing interest in food. She continues to LOVE walks in the baby bjorn, so that is still one of our favorite activities.
I am a primary care physician in Los Angeles, California. I spend my days healing others, but am careful to take care of myself as I navigate my way through life with lupus. I spend my free time quilting, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.