Monday, April 30, 2012

A Belated Happy Easter

Easter Egg Hunt 2012

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He's off!

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We went to Granny & Papa's for Easter. Will got to do a couple of Easter egg hunts--a pretty big one in a park in Marlow and then Papa took him fishing and to an egg hunt in Orscherln's. Fun! Then after church on Sunday, they had an egg hunt with probably a 100:1 egg: kid ratio. I am only slightly exaggerating. I finally pulled Will out when his basket was completely running over. He had Easter candy out the wazoo. Only today he discovered that the "Candy Monster" had come and taken much of his remaining candy (sticky candy that the dentist says he can't have anymore). Anyway, we had a nice time in Duncan.

Loving Brothers
Will pulled Soren away from him by the neck of the sweater throughout this photoshoot. You can just feel the love!

The Family (minus Rachel)

Granny & Papa and their boys

The boys wore their Easter outfits that I made. I used this tutorial from Dana for the little sweater vests made from one really big men's sweater. They turned out pretty cute, especially if you only look from a distance. :-) I had some real trouble getting my binding on (I kept missing the sweater edge). I think I should have serged the edge of the sweater before trying to put the binding on. Oh well, live and learn!

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Complete with tons of teething drool, spit-up, and a thread I missed clipping!

I was more in love with the seersucker pants. Soren's were a super basic pattern from KwikSew for Babies (but what do you really need when you're 6 months, but basic?). Will's are the pants (Little Heartbreaker Pants, maybe?) from Sewing for Boys. I actually really liked this pattern. I think for once I can say I didn't screw anything up, and they came out looking pretty stinking adorable. I especially like the adjustable elastic in the waistband. This was my first faux fly, and I really liked it. As I said about the LTPP, I think I need to put these on all his pants/shorts. It makes it look much more professional.

Will's moves
Here's what I got when I asked Will to show me the back of his pants.

Front of the Little Heartbreaker Pants

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Soren: 6 Months

 Soren 6 months

Soren was 6 months on April 4. He didn't get much 1/2 year celebration due to Will's birthday on the second (and just being the second child, poor thing). He's had a big last month, though! He started crawling during Spring Break/Easter weekend and has been slowly working on it. He really started making progress at Granny & Papa's where he has carpet, and I think he'd be a lot faster if he had carpet to practice on. The hard floor is much harder to get traction on if he's wearing clothes and probably painful if he's not... I made him some homemade baby legs with fabric-paint dots on them to give him some traction. They seem to help a bit. His latest accomplishment (just this weekend) is pulling up on the furniture. Will seemed to wait on these physical milestones till he was ready to do them very well, but Soren starts trying as soon as he can possibly do it, and I am afraid it's going to result in many more injuries for Soren. He's much more unsteady than I remember Will being.

Soren stands

He also sprung two teeth in the last month on the bottom front. He had a fussy night or two and then they popped through. Looking back it wasn't that bad, but I know when I was in the throes of NO SLEEP, it seemed pretty awful, and I sure was glad when they came through.

He really is such a fun little guy--always happy unless he's not feeling good, and even then, you can coax a smile from him. His face just lights up anytime someone makes eye contact with him.

Bil & I joke about how different he is from Will at this age. They are just about as opposite as they could be, except for both loving their mama and not wanting to sleep on their own. Soren seems like a much more typical baby in how he enjoys the world around him. Will was just so miserable at this age. Soren loves to play with toys and peek-a-boo,all of that stuff. He LOVES to eat. He must sit at the table with everyone else and eat when the rest of the family does, or he gets mad. Unlike his brother, his is not "meh" about solids at all, but is so excited to eat! It's a refreshing change! He's very adventurous; he will eat the baby food I make him, but he'd much prefer to have whatever we're eating. So far, he's eaten with gusto frittatas, pesto tilapia, tangy salmon, and most recently turnip greens from Papa's garden! He scarfed the greens as fast as I could feed him.

Soren is not the terrible sleeper Will was/is. He doesn't like to sleep by himself when he's at home (seems to do OK at daycare with it), but he does actually sleep. The only problem we have with him is that he seems to be something of a night owl. He likes to take a little cat nap in the early evening when I'm putting Will to bed and consequently doesn't want to go to sleep till the 10-12 range, when we are ready for him to go sleep by 10 at the latest. Left to his own devices, he'll sleep in till 10:30 in the morning! I'm not sure what kind of schedule I'm going to shoot for this summer.

His stats from his well-baby visit: height = 26 inches, weight = 16 lbs, 10 oz, and head = ?? cm. Those numbers put him in about the 93% for height, 15-20% for weight, and 5% for head. His weight curve has continued to drop off (though he has GAINED from 2 months ago), so Dr. Thompson looked him over carefully but said since he looks healthy, is obviously passing milestones and growing in height, we wouldn't worry about his weight. Technically, I think he could be classed as FTT since he's crossed more than 1 major curve line on his weight, but I agree with the doctor that he's doing ok. He got another round of vaccinations at this appointment, but he did VERY well, just cried when he got the stick and then was fine. One of the other nurses was shocked when we came out; she didn't realize there was a well-baby visit going on because of the lack of screaming. He is just such a happy little guy, and I think he's going to have the rest of the family's high pain tolerance, too!

 Grayson and his youngest 

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Little Treasure Pocket Pants

 Utilizing the pockets on the LTPPs

The Boy, Oh, Boy, Oh Boy! sewalong pattern this month is the Little Treasure Pocket Pants. I thought I'd really like to do a pair in natural-colored linen, but I did not want to pay for fabric, especially when I have so much quilting cotton on hand that would work. Then I realized I could probably find plenty of linen at the thrift store in pant form. Off I went, and sure enough, I found the perfect pair of of women's-size capris in 100% linen (so it was better fabric than what I could have found at JoAnn's anyway!).I did purchase a yard of Cars fabric to use as the contrast, to ensure that Will would like the pants.The materials for these pants cost about $6 total, I think, and I have at least 1/2 yard of Cars fabric left. (Not counting the notions which I had on hand already.)

I also discovered partway through sewing these up that I needed some bias tape. I guess this is why you're supposed to read that notions list and the directions BEFORE you start! Anyway, it turned out I had some vintage bias tape in the perfect shade of red, and it wasn't falling apart as was some other old bias tape I tried to use once, so I was able to push on through. Yah!

I love this "Handmade to Cover Me Booty" tag for pants--so cute!

I had no problems understanding the pattern. This was my second faux fly to sew, and I have to say I am loving that look. I know I've seen a tutorial for how to add one to a pants pattern, and I think I'm going to have to find it and do it.

 LTPPs from women's linen 

One thing I did screw up was the hem. When I cut out my main pants peices, I thought I'd be really smart and utilize the hem of the original pants. That would have been a great plan, except for the silly panel that didn't have a hem! Oops. I also had cut off part of the length of the panel (to account for not having to hem it) when I cut it out, so I didn't have enough length to create a hem the same height as on the linen. Double oops. Since I couldn't match it, I decided to hem it in contrasting thread and using a decorative stitch--maybe if it really stands out it will look more purposeful? Anyway, I'm not sure it looks great, but it's not terrible either. And I like the decorative stitching! I need to remember to use my fancy stitches more often. 

Contrast stitch on the contrast fabric hem

I'm pretty happy with the fit. I sewed the 2/3T size. I will say that they seem pretty snug in the rise, which surprised me, since Will is so small. I don't think he'd be ready for the next size up, but I am quite sure when Soren is 3, I will be needing to size up.

All in all, I'd say this one was a success. I definitely might make more of these for the fall. 

LTPPs and raglan birthday shirt

Will's top in these pics is also from the Sewing for Boys book--it's the raglan tee, which i LOVE. I think this is probably my sixth or seventh one! It's his "3" birthday shirt.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Cars Party Redux

When I started thinking about themes for Will's third birthday, I was auditioning Angry Birds and Toy Story. Bil voted for Toy Story, so I started making plans in that direction. Then I mentioned something about it to Will, who informed me that he didn't want Toy Story, he wanted Cars. So, we did Cars. Again. I guess my getting to choose the theme ended at age 2. Hopefully by next year he'll have moved on to something else.

We scheduled his party two weeks after his birthday so Cousins Ella & Aubrey would be able to attend while they were in town briefly. This put the party two days after a big event I'm responsible for planning & running at school, though, so I was pretty stressed out about the party since I didn't have much time to devote to it in the week before. So, we paid someone else to make a Mater cake. It was so nice not to have to worry about it, plus it was much more professional than anything I could have done.

Mater's front

Another view of Mater

My only contribution to the handcrafted Cars theme were these Mater pops. I loosely followed the pictures and tutorial I found here. I have decided food crafting is just not enjoyable to me. It's too fiddly and requires to much patience for each little element.

Mater cake pops

I made Will a special "3" T-shirt for his birthday shirt. Red is his favorite color at the moment, so I used a thrifted red T and the 3 in reverse applique contrast fabric. Originally I had planned to write "three" going vertically alongside the number, but when I sewed it on, I turned the letters so they were facing away from the 3. It looked back. And I didn't/couldn't rip the letters all of, so I thought I'd be clever and just cover it up with a regular appliqued bar on top. I think it would have been fine if I'd made the bar a little thicker, but as it is, it looks a lot like a 1. So it kind of looks like a "13" shirt. Oh well!

In addition to the Mater cake, Will specifically requested a "Gandalf candle." I have no idea what he was envisioning, but there was not a Gandalf candle, figurine, or even sticker to be had in OKC, so I settled on printing him off a picture and attaching it to a candle. He picked this picture of "Gandalf and the bull dragon." I turned out to be too windy to get any of the candles lit anyway....

The Gandalf Candle

Although we got off to a rocky start (we thought we were going to have to move the party because another family had a meet-up at the park--it can't be reserved), everything came off ok, and the party was a success. Will did have a complete meltdown around 6 after we had gone with the Weavers back to the house. His big weekend with his cousins and no nap that day and the party was just more than he could take, poor thing!

Yum yum!

Grayson and his youngest cuz

Will had a diaper emergency toward the end of the party, and took off mid-diaper change, doing a circuit around the play area pantsless and with one shoe missing before he was apprehended. Always the sign of a good party, right?


I can't believe my baby is already three (and not so much a baby anymore)! Time really flies when you don't sleep. ;-)

He is such a smart little boy, and so much fun to be around--you never know what cute thing he's going to say or do. Looking at the developmental milestones for 3-4 year olds, he appears to be ahead of the game a bit in terms of gross-motor developmental: he's been navigating stairs easily by himself for a year and running very well since just after he turned one. Another area where he really stands out from other kids his age is in his verbal and cognitive development (although maybe he just seems cognitively ahead because he is SO verbal and can say what's crossing through his mind). He is probably about 75-85% understandable to other adults, and was impressing strangers in the last month by telling them not just how old he was ("Two, but I'm going to be three!") but also his birthdate ("April seckun"). He also knows his address, though it's not particularly understandable. He listens to the radio when we're in the car and asks questions about what he hears. The other day a story about underwater exploration came on and he wanted to know what they were going down to see, where it was, whether there were sharks, etc. I have a hard time answering him sometimes because he lacks the vocabulary for the concepts I'm trying to explain. Good thing for my students I teach university rather than early childhood because I don't think I'd be very good at it.

 Will's "3" shirt

He is really starting to love fantasy play now, and just about every day he becomes some kind of super hero (or a bad guy!) and fights dragons and snakes. Although he loves play fighting and wrestling, he is still a very loving boy. I still hear "I love you" multiple times a day, and he wants to snuggle when he's going to bed, although he doesn't always like me to kiss him during the day now!

It's not all fun and games--he certainly has his moments (or even days) when he can drive us absolutely crazy. Granny & Papa continue to let him sleep over at their house every once in a while, and it's always a wonderful little vacation for me, even with Soren still at home. Will continues to be the high maintenance child, even compared to infant. He goes to bed between 7-8 (with me laying down with him until he's asleep), generally wakes up several times during the night, and wakes up, saying, "Let's git-up, git-up, git-up" anywhere from 5:30-6:30. Since Soren is something of a night owl, often not wanting to go to sleep till after 11, and still wakes up himself, that doesn't leave a lot of sleep time for mama. I am certainly looking forward to the day when Will sleeps by himself and through the night!

All in all, he's a fun, entertaining, and sweet little boy, though, and I am thoroughly enjoying watching the little person he develops into.