The Premise...

  • ***Make no craft purchases December 1, 2010 to November 30 2011
  • ***Use and create from existing supplies only
  • ***Small purchases to continue crafting (such as sewing needles) are acceptable
  • ***Trading items with others is legitimate since there's no net gain

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

MINE is the BIGGEST One.

Well, folks....we've been gardening up a storm. Crafty news in a minute, but I was certainly touched by a situation this week. I hope you gain something from this bloggy blog post....

The Reformed Supermom has 3 kids. One is off being "all grown up" at college, and there's two wee littles at home. Madi is 5 1/2 as of this writing, and Leif is 3 1/2, four in August. If anyone ever tells you to have two kids close together so they will have a NOT listen to them!! They do NOT have a playmate...they have someone to fight with. Someone to argue with. Someone to tease and scream and virutally annoy with. Perhaps in between all of this, there are some stolen moments where they get along. Where they hug, and share, and love, and are generally kind to each other.

Most of all, they fight. I feel like I'm CONSTANTLY trying to nurture and correct and steer them toward treating each other by The Golden Rule. It's exhausting. And lately, it seems like there's no payoff. The status quo is more bickering, more fighting, more whining. Calgon, TAKE ME AWAY!!!!

With the nice weather going on in this part of the woods, we've gotten up early most days, eaten breakfast in a hurry, brushed our teeth, and headed outside before many folks have picked up their morning paper. We've worked in the garden, watering plants and peeking at the blank dirt, hoping to see a sprout. Yes, even the day AFTER we put the seeds in the earth...the kids were surprised, and then conceded that maybe TOMORROW was the day. At some point, the kids would use spray bottles to "water the plants" and I would sit down to knit. This week, it was on Madi's green and purple sweater.

A little while into the watering routine, Madi would usually ask if they could have a pop-pop, which is one of those ice-popsicles in the clear plastic. Usually, the answer is yes. It's become routine, no matter if it's half past eight or not.

One day, at pop-pop time, Madi asked if she could get her and Leif one from the freezer. Sure, I say. And she comes back with seems to be a standard size pop-pop. One, the JUMBO variety. Both are grape. Madi says:

"Can you open these for us?" she asks. "MINE IS THE BIGGEST ONE."

Madi chooses the biggest one. It was at this point I had a moment of hesitation, do I correct her? Do I change what is happening, to either replace her BIGGEST ONE with a smaller one, or dig and pray and hope that there is another one of equal size so it would be "fair" and two kids would have THE BIGGEST ONE? Do I tell her that she should ALWAYS give "the best" (or what ever is perceived to be the best) to someone else? Why did I even care?

So, I do nothing. I cut the tops off and bring them back, and make a point to tell Madi "and HEeeeeeere's YOURS!" Leif was off digging worms or something, so the pop-pop appeared like magic on his radar, and I sat back down to knit.


A pause here for some philosophical stuff....

Why *IS* it we (meaning me, but maybe you too...) feel the need to sacrifice what WE want? I mean, getting what WE want is not mutually exclusive to what others want, is it? Not ALL the time at least. Why is it that we feel the need to suffer so that we feel we are truly giving to others? If we give to others, does that mean we have to do without? What if we make sure OUR needs are met first, and then help others? Kinda like on airline emergency your oxygen mask before helping others.

Now, apply it to ANYTHING. How many quilts have I made this past year? 7 or 8? How many have I made for my immediate family? Well, counting Madi's that I just did last week, ONE!!! And that one has been done for the most part, and just needed some quilting and binding...and yet...she gets to be LAST. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say when I put "others" first (meaning not immediate family) I'm putting myself and my family LAST. Why? Why didn't I say "I get the BIGGEST one."?



So, As I knit, the kids come sit on the porch with me, waiting for hummingbirds to dive-bomb the feeder. They're sitting really still, enjoying the pop ice. Leif is still oblivious to the size discrepancy.

"Hey Med-eeeeeee..." he says. "Wanna have a bite of my pop-pop???" and he stretches out his treat with a chunk of purple ice pinched above his fingers. He, with the much-smaller pop-pop wants to SHARE with Madi. He, with the same FLAVOR of pop-pop wants to share with Madi. It just about brings a tear to your eye, doesn't it? Madi says, "Oh, thanks LEIF!" and takes a bite. Just as naturally, a little while later Madi does the same thing for him, and offers a bite from hers. She pinches a really BIG chunk up to the top, a really generous offer of sharing, and again I'm amazed. Leif, tells her EXACTLY what he wants, and she breaks it smaller so he's happy.

All without my intervention. All without talk about what is fair, or for me advocating for one over the other.

What's the moral of the story? I dunno...I'll figure it out. I *do* know that it's perfectly ok to call dibs on THE BIGGEST ONE now and again, if that's what you really want.


In crafty news.....

The "Mothed" sweater is done in the body, and I even tried it on. OOOOOPS...guess what? The gauge is off. And I need to lose about 15 pounds before I can wear it. Thank goodness I'm running.

Madi's green and purple sweater is about 1/2way through the bodice. About ready to do the teeny increase at the ribcage, then it's short sleeves so that sucker is almost done!

I've been cutting on some black and white squares to make a lap-size quilt. THAT's about to come together this week. It's going to be SA-WEEEET!

Made some soap this week and it was fun. I've gotta reorganize the soap closet..I'm so bad about putting things away!

Made a purchase. I know, I'm totally sneaking this in at the end. But...I did. Some may say it's not a slip because it was a sale (and a darn good one, at that!) but I was going for no purchases. Bummer. Again with the bummer. I'm happy with everything I got, and I will use it. Madi is going to school in mere weeks, and I will have MUCH more time to sew since I won't have to referee. Maybe even Leify will get into the act!

Friday, May 20, 2011


Pretty much free to quilt starting this weekend. Except....there's PLANTS TO PLANT! Gaaaaaaah! That should only take a day or so. The hubby needs to go pick up a truckload or two of dirt to fill the raised box he made me last week. The whole week was just too darn busy to get it in there!

Got some tomatoes and peppers planted before the nice rains last week, so they seem to be happy. Have plans to plant cukes, kale, spring mix salad, and pumpkins. I'm sure we'll have room for others as well.

I hope our peach tree produces this year. I think the squirrels snuck away with the nearly-ripe peaches last year while we were away one weekend. I'd like to think it was them, and not neighbor kids hopping the fence. :D

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Still going...and going...and going...

Have about 2 more inches on the Oatmeal mama sweater then it's on to the sleeves. The endless knit stitch was driving me crazy. I think I need some sort of pattern to keep me entertained. So, what do I do?

Start another sweater.

This time it's Madi-size, so the payoff will happen much more quickly. I'd say I'm about 6 inches in from the top, so basically the neckline rib is done and I'm working down the shoulders. Have 8-ish more rows until I join under the arms and knit away! Maybe after I get started there, I'll switch back to mine to finish the body.

Did the blue tumblers's beautiful. I wish I had a baby boy to use it. Going to do another one in pinks and melon. Have the material all prewashed and set aside, so whenever I get a "free moment". Heh.

Got my sister's bed caddy and pillow sham done, to go with her Sister Soldier quilt, so that will be out this week. YAY!

Aaaaaand gonna make a few batches of soap soon. Starting to get momentum again...I hate when I get crafter's block. The hubby is off work in a few weeks, so I hope he's ready, willing, and able to just let me do MY stuff while he's off. Or else there's gonna be a war. Tee hee hee.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Feeling a creativity binge coming on....

My studio was starting to look like a bomb went off. Too many half done projects laying about. So, I started putting scraps away and placed the Rhonda squares in a project bag along with all its stuff. At least everything will be together!

Pulled some fabric for a baby boy quilt and prewashed it. The "roll up" method worked great because I could unroll, compare, pull what I needed and roll the balance back up. Like colors that were rolled together were easy to pull without messing up the whole stack. Add this one to the list of "things I want to do".

Madi's quilt is still on the quilting frame, so I'd better move that one on out to make room for new things. Poor girl. So patient.

Been randomly knitting on my Oatmeal Mama sweater. Gah. Only about 5 more inches to get to the bottom of the body, then only sleeves left. Too bad it's knit-knit-knit for miles. Knit. Knit. Knit.

Fabric buying update: The second round of fabric came, and it was a little more exciting than the first one, which is both good and bad. Filled a cart with "sale fabric" online today, only to find out they are doing some sneaky-sneaky word play to inspire you to buy. I'm on to you, Random Fabric Store. I see what you're doing here. ESPECIALLY because the "take an additional 30% off is for fabrics in the $5.50-$6 range. That would make things around $4/yd right? Well, they've categorized another section as something other than "Clearance" so the extra discount is not good. Guess what...those fabrics are priced in the $4-$4.50 range already. A marketing gimmick to be sure. So, no buying today. Yay, me.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

And Still...More Reality...

Today was apparently spring cleaning day. My bathrooms look great and my spice cupboard doesn't threaten to explode all over the counter when I open the door (anymore). Did all the laundry...heck, when was the last time I *DID* the laundry? The hubby has been doing a bang-up job on that all on his own. I better give him a hug and a kiss for it. :D

I've got high hopes for the pantry to be revamped tomorrow and perhaps a spic-and-span kitchen.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Day 2, Paying Attention to Real Life

Well, yesterday was a successful day, even though it ONLY involved an appointment in the morning and then grocery shopping with two kids. Yup, that is the extent of my productivity. It really is an accomplishment though, because I think I've only ventured out into public with the two littles and done a (successful) big shopping trip by myself only twice ever.

My purse has ended up back on the counter, and there are little things here and there collecting on the flat surfaces. GAH. I think more than trying to force an agenda, I'm just going to wander from room to room and put things back as I see them. Oh, and make a list of things to do like:

Pay XYZ bill
Call for Kindergarden shots


All of this is really working on crafts, albeit indirectly. I'm thinking I'll have much more fun sewing with nothing else pressing to do.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Paying Attention to Real Life Today...

...mostly because I've been in a holding pattern, trying to get everything done and getting nothing done. So, today I'm gonna go grocery shopping with the kids, play outside, and do random things at will.