Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A different kind of "made by Jenny"

First of all, let me say THANK YOU so much for all of the love about my hexie pillow!  All of your comments put a smile on my face for a good long time, and for that, I am very appreciative!  It's been quilted, but I've been debating back and forth about whether to do a zipper or a pocket closure, so it isn't finished yet.
Anyway, onto my "different" made by Jenny.  What does that even mean?  Well, I haven't been doing much sewing this week.  Or crocheting, or any other craftiness.  But I've been making things!  Oh, yes, I've been making things.
About a year ago, my husband was diagnosed with Meniere's Disease.  This disorder causes debilitating chronic vertigo.  He cannot work, drive a car, do anything, when he's having what we call a "vertigo attack".  Medication doesn't really work for this.  The best course of action is to keep the attacks from happening, and to do that, he's been put on a very low sodium diet (around 1500mg per day, most people eat about 6000mg).
This presented a HUGE challenge to us.  Neither of us are really cooks, and this sodium restriction has basically ruled out anything in a can, box, bottle, freezer package, or restaurant.  What would we eat?!?  Well, after seeing a nutritionist, and doing some research to find an amazing cookbook, we pretty much make EVERYTHING from scratch.
Homemade sesame seed buns.  Minus the sodium. =)
I mentioned in my last post that school is about to start.  After spending all day with my Kindergarteners, I am tired.  I often don't feel like cooking, especially since I don't really know how to make a lot of stuff. Which means right now I need to fill my freezer, before school starts.  We can't have traditional convenience food, so why not make Keith's low-sodium food convenient?  Plus, I DO like to bake, so it has actually kind of been fun.  In the past week, I have made:

*enchiladas with sauce from scratch
*stuffed shells (2 pans, in the freezer)
*sloppy joe mix for the crockpot
*taco meat
*ranch dressing
*Italian dressing
*salsa verde
*barbeque sauce (this is simmering on the stove right now, it smells amazing!)
*2 batches sesame seed sandwich buns
*chicken parmesan meatloaf
*baked donuts
*nutella-oat and chocolate chip cookies
*soy sauce substitute
*our various dinners for the night

And I'm not done.  I plan to make several marinades to freeze with meat, and probably more breads/buns/bagels to freeze.  Keith has devoured almost the whole first batch of bagels.  When I told him I had a recipe for bagels he could eat (store-bought ones usually are around 300-400mg of sodium per bagel), he exclaimed, "What???  Why have you been holding out on me!"  Haha, oops.
I'm also going blueberry picking with my mom tomorrow, so I'll make some jam and baked goods to freeze for convenient breakfasts during the work week.  As we find more recipes that we love, I will make bigger batches for freezing as well.  I have a rule that I won't freeze anything unless I know we like it.  It has taken us a LONG time to get used to this new way of life, but we're slowly getting there.  The food I make actually tastes really good, it feels so much healthier (well, it is), and I'm better able to adapt non-sodium friendly recipes to work for us.  Plus, the biggest benefit is that Keith is able to keep the vertigo at bay, and lead a somewhat normal life!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

WIP Wednesday

School starts in a mere 20 days (and I go back even sooner!).  Needing a project to keep my hands busy while sitting around watching tv, I decided to keep my tradition alive.  Which tradition?  The one where I make a new pillow cover for my library chair each year.

Since I have so many beautiful rainbow scraps, thanks to the Bottled Rainbows quilt, I thought that nothing could be more perfect than a mini-rainbow!

This pic was taken a few days ago, and progress is moving along nicely!  I'm thinking of backing it in Amy Butler's red lotus flowers, but here's where I need your help!  What color should I bind it in???  I really have no idea.
I'm linking up to WIP Wednesday, over on Lee's blog.  Check it out!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Some Little Things...

A little while ago my friend Julie buttered me up with compliments about my craftiness (totally unnecessary), and asked if I'd make her daughter a crayon roll.  Of course I said yes!  People getting excited about things I make makes ME so excited!  So, Miss Olivia is now the proud owner of this:
I put crayons in it for her, too.
It was pretty cute, she took it out of the bag and said, "Ohhhh!"  Now, because her mama Julie is a pretty awesome lady, I threw in a surprise for her too.  Her very own coffee sleeve (Julie is quite the coffee connoisseur, much like myself).

I remembered that she likes red, and I had that awesome wooden button to use.  Perfect!

Here they are, all finished and ready to go to their new home!  Julie reports that they've already been put to good use.  In fact, looky what I found over on Facebook!  Love it!

To totally toot my own horn, I've had a lot of requests for those coffee sleeves.  My husband is pretty excited, because he really wants me to open an Etsy shop.  We shall see!  As for me, I'm off to construct two of them in that popular Joel Dewberry fabric (seen on Olivia's crayon roll)!

Sunday, August 7, 2011


Last Sunday was my 1st anniversary.  It also happened to be the anniversary of the biggest crafty undertaking of my life.  I am not exaggerating.  I DIYed the heck out of my wedding.  It was a LOT of work.  But you know what?  Everything turned out perfect.  It was exactly what I wanted, and exactly as I'd imagined.  Even though I spent the hours before my rehearsal dinner in tears in my garage trimming the stems of 12 dozen roses that had arrived 8 hours after they were supposed to, it was worth it.  
So without further ado, here's all of my hard work in pictures (taken by the amazing Kristen Honeycutt).

The pic of the earrings is by me.

I had the stamps custom made, and I heat-embossed the napkins.  The candy buffet was a huge hit.  The pennant banner was sewn by me.

I went a little crystal crazy!  The shoes were my "something blue", the cake topper was jigsawed by my dad, and I glued 1152 crystals onto it.  I wore my blinged out hoodie to get ready.
Every piece of paper was made by me as well.  The backs of the programs had wedding mad-libs. =)

I did the main table flowers, but the rest of them were all done by my amazing bridesmaid Dawn, and her daughter Ryann (Ry did the boutonnieres and shepherd's hook jars).  I ordered 12 dozen supergreen roses from Ecuador that arrived Thursday before the wedding, and Dawn and I bought the rest at Pike Place Market on Friday morning before we arranged them all (taking a break to get our nails done, haha!).

Yep, it was worth it. =)

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Finally a Finish!

Nestie Quilt Along Quilt
top is a mix, mostly Michael Miller fabrics & Kona white
back is Alexander Henry "Diamond Eye"
binding is Kona corn yellow
pieced & quilted by me =)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Well, it's time for another WIP Wednesday, and boy do I have a lot in progress!
First off, I finally finished the top of my husband's manly quilt!  Now I'm scared.  This thing is a MONSTER.  I don't know how I'm ever going to quilt it.  It's so big that I had nowhere to hang it for a good picture, so here's part of it hanging over the railing above the stairs:

I also decided it was high time I finish up my Nestie quilt along quilt.  I had pretty much abandoned it, since my husband decided he wanted this purple quilt.  Then I thought, if I make it a baby-sized quilt, I will be done in no time!  After all, I really love the fabric.  Here's the top, but I have everything ready to go to quilt and bind it already, too:

Last (but certainly not least!) I have four more Bottled Rainbows blocks to share.  May I present to you:



I am LOVING these blocks!  It's so relaxing to sit there & sew the little pieces on.   Much as I like the process, though, I can't wait for it to be done!  I'm linking up again this week to Lee's WIP Wednesday.  Go on over & see what everyone else is up to!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Catching Up

Well, just pass me the Worst Blogger of the Year Award!  I can't believe it's been over a month since I have posted.  Oops.  It definitely hasn't been for lack of projects, but it also was crazy busy around here with the end of school.  Now that I've graduated my Kindergarteners I have a little extra time, and I am really looking forward to using it!

I still need to finish my husband's "manly quilt", but the number one project I can't wait to complete is my Bottled Rainbows quilt!  I've finally started, and here are my first two:

I've also been making a lot of bee blocks.  I have 2 more that need to get done, so maybe when I'm finished with those I'll do a bee block post.  As for this one, I started writing it on Wednesday, but Blogger wouldn't let me upload any pictures!  Grr!  Hopefully that won't happen again soon, and hopefully I'll be a better blogger now that it's summer!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Hi.  I'm still here!  It's been very busy around here, but I have been making stuff!  I realize now that I never posted the top I made (my first garment, woo!), so I will be sure to do that.  I entered it in Made By Rae's spring top contest, but I don't have high hopes.  I am so not a garment sewer!
I've actually been working quite a lot on my husband's quilt.  All of the blocks are finally finished, and I started putting it together over the weekend.
This is what it's looking like so far.  I think I like it, even though it still looks sooooo 80's to me.  My husband likes it though, which is all that matters.  It is going to be a BIG quilt, and I am kind of getting nervous about quilting it on my inferior machine.  So much so, that I am considering pricing out new ones.  Eeek!
In other news, I FINALLY got my order of Kona solids to start my bottled rainbows quilt!  I placed my order two months ago, and have been really super annoyed with how the backorder was handled, but whatever.  Now I can make that delicious quilt!
I'm linking up with Lee today at Freshly Pieced.  Go check out what everyone else has going on this Wednesday!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Oooh, I've been a bad blogger

April 17th was my last post?  Oops!  It has been pretty busy around here though.  April is a big birthday month in my family, culminating with my own.  My husband got me the best birthday present ever - tickets to an Ohio State football game in Ohio!  I haven't been back since I moved 6 years ago and I miss it so much.  Yay!

My dad's birthday is right before mine.  He likes to bake & cook, so this is what I made him:

Hexie-ful potholder and dishtowel.  I have to say, I was going to make him two potholders and three towels... yeah... I didn't realize that they take FOREVER to make!  I saw him this morning, and I was still working late into last night just to finish these.  Whoops.

The full band on the towel.  Sorry these pics are so dark.  I just bought plain white kitchen towels, and then pinned the heck out of the hexies to sew them on.

Back of the potholder.  The quilting is hard to see, but I echo quilted every other row of hexagons.  I wasn't sure how heat-safe this thing would be.  I used two layers of batting, but I wanted to quilt minimally, because I thought maybe the quilted areas would be less heat-safe.

Dad totally loved them!  His kitchen has a lot of blue, so he's excited to put them in there.  It's my hope that I'll be able to make him the other pieces I intended to.  Eventually.  =)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Wanna see something cute?

Not to toot my own horn, or anything...  Well, actually, I guess I am.  But look how cute these are!

After I made a crayon roll for my niece, my co-worker mentioned that his son would love something like that.  I told him that I'd love to make something for his cute little boy!  After we thought about it for a bit, we both agreed that a colored pencil roll-up would be more appropriate for his 5-year-old.  Using my past experience making Sara's crochet hook case, and Frankie's crayon roll, I made up my own pattern and set to work.  I'd never sewn for a little boy before, but I am loving the Lizzy House trees and ducks!

My co-worker has a one-year-old daughter too.  I didn't want to leave her out, so I whipped up a crayon roll for her, that he can keep until she's old enough for crayons.  He doesn't know about this one, so I can't wait to show him tomorrow!

Today I've been hard at work on the manly quilt.  I'm making good progress, so I hope I have a quilt top to show off soon!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

WIP Wednesday

It's WIP Wednesday!  I'll be linking up again at Lee's blog, Freshly Pieced.

I have a lot "in progress" right now...  The only thing that I actually completed since last Wednesday, is my reusable coffee sleeve.  This is pretty much because we were here for a few days:
This is the nicest picture I was able to get at the beach.  In fact, this was the only day we actually went TO the beach, because the weather was so nasty!
Then I had to go back to work.  After a week off.  Monday was hard. =(  Some progress has been made on the "manly" purple quilt though.

This week I'll be working on more of those gray blocks at the top.  Also on the docket are: colored pencil roll-up for a co-worker's son, hexie-filled birthday present for my dad, and piecing the patchwork part of my crewel pillow (since I did go fabric shopping last week!).  Whew!

Friday, April 8, 2011

It was bound to happen...

I got bit by the bug.  That's right.  The hexie-bug.  I knew it was only a matter of time...

Thursday, April 7, 2011

My new favorite thing I've made...

Every time I make something new, it's my favorite thing I've ever made!  Haha, sort of.  I'm really loving this guy though.

I've been wanting to make a reusable coffee sleeve for a while now.  The rate I visit Starbucks, I need one!  So this morning, before I went to run errands (errands which included a stop for a grande no-water chai) I whipped this up.  Love it!  Love the stripey inside too.

My errands included a trip to the grocery store to make some yummy treats for my husband's birthday weekend at the beach.  You MUST make Sarah's granola recipe.  It is SO easy and SO good (I am shoveling handfuls in my maw as we speak).  Today macadamia nuts were on sale, so I used those instead of almonds.  Yummmmmmm........  It tastes pretty good with milk, like cereal, too.
I also just pulled a pan of mocha muffins out of the oven.  Which I need to make again, because I accidentally used regular baking powder, instead of sodium-free (my husband is on a super low-sodium diet).  Best not poison the hubby for his birthday...

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

WIP Wednesday!

Happy Wednesday!  I actually usually dislike Wednesdays - it's the only day of the week that my class doesn't have a specialist, and since we're in the rainy season now, well, let's just say Wednesdays are looooong.
But I am on Spring Break!  Woo hoo!  I have been sewing a lot this week, too, so I decided to link up to Lee's WIP Wednesday.

After finishing my Pop Garden quilt, my husband asked where HIS quilt was.  Then he proceeded to give me a pretty tall order for what he wanted in a quilt:
1.) No prints.  Seriously, none.
2.) Must include purple.
3.) Be manly.

Hmm... well, I like prints, and I don't think purple really screams "manly".  Crap.  But then I remembered that I saw this really great quilt made entirely of solids over on Julie's blog.  And there was a sale on Kona going on too...  So I really quickly emailed Julie for the yardage requirement, placed my order (he decided he was ok with purple and gray), and now I am knee deep in what I think is a pretty 80's-looking quilt.

I do think it will be pretty cool when it's done though.  I successfully cut out the 588 pieces in one afternoon, still have all of my fingers intact, and have actually finished 31 of the 84 blocks.  Go me!

I also finished a springy Nicey Jane table runner for my dining table (I pieced it a long time ago & finally got around to quilting/binding it).  I don't have a picture yet because it's too darn gloomy in here.  I finally gifted my mom her birthday table runner, as well.  She loved it & sent me this pic right away:

Finally, I made a block for Jodi for April of the Fat Stash Bee.  I feel terrible, because her first round of fabric never got to me.  Either one of my neighbors has it, or it's floating around in postal no man's land...  So I made her this one, but I am going to do an extra or two:

Thursday, March 31, 2011

I did it!

I like to take my wedding rings off when I sew.   I just realized I see them here in this picture, haha!

I have conquered the quilt!  My very first quilt is completely done, and has been in use for about 4 days now.  It is rife with imperfection and beginnerness, but I love it nonetheless.  Unfortunately I don't have very good pictures of it because the weather is horrible here, but...  Horrible weather makes perfect curling up under a new quilt weather!
Size: throw (I forget the actual dimensions, but it's a big throw)
Fabric: Heather Bailey's Pop Garden and Bijoux, plus Kona white
Quilting:  machine quilted, straight-line 1/4 from the seams, by me

The binding might be my favorite part!  I won't lie - quilting this on my dinky little machine was hard...  But not so hard that I'm not ready to jump right in & make more!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Fat Quarter Friday

One of my local fabric stores has a "fat quarter Friday" sale every week.  Buy 3, get one free.  This week I decided I needed to treat myself to a fat quarter Friday.  I needed some more yellow, orange, and blue for my newest project: the Bottled Rainbows quilt along.  I've been intrigued by this quilt ever since Rachel at Stitched in Color first mentioned it, but I didn't think I had the stash for it.  Darn if she isn't persuasive though!  She kept posting links for scraps and Kona bundles, and pretty soon I could no longer resist.  I can't WAIT until my rainbow gets here so that I can start sewing!

While I'm waiting though, I also have been trying out a new craft!  Crewel!  I've wanted to try this for a while, but I knew I wanted to start with a kit since I didn't know what I was doing.  Most of the kits out there, however, are...  a little grandma-ish.  Sorry grandmas of the world, but that's not my style!  Then I found Tako Fibers on Etsy.  Oh my goodness.  I love everything about her kits.  Super easy instructions, modern designs, and even the packaging is so amazingly adorable.  Love, love, love.  
Check this out:

I think I'm going to turn it into a pillow.  Fantastic, no?

Oh, and I'm also finally quilting my Pop Garden quilt.  Yay!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Just One Star

Yesterday I ran to the post office to mail out Rebecca's block for the Fat Stash Bee, but also this little block here.  It's my contribution to the Just One Star Project.  The people at Moda fabrics are working with the Semper Fi Fund to make 100 quilts in 100 days for soldiers.  All you have to do to help is make one of these star blocks and mail it in to them.  They will gather the blocks, assemble the quilts, and deliver them on Flag Day.  One block?  How easy is that?  I only made one, but I might make more, it was that easy (and enjoyable).  Those words on the block are the sewer's name and home state.  So each soldier that gets one will have a quilt from all over the country.  Cool.
I really enjoyed participating in this project, and I hope to do more things like this in the future.

Monday, March 14, 2011


The weather outside has truly been frightful.  Yesterday was dark and gray, with howling winds, and pounding rain.  I stayed indoors and made myself a little treat to brighten the mood around here.
Meet my new pincushion:
It's only about 3 inches square.  It was the first wonky star I've made, and it's backed with my fabric obsession Sandi Henderson's Henna Garden in blue.
Also, something you should know about me is that I am a coconut-aholic.  I spent my entire 2-week honeymoon stuffing my face with everything under the Hawaiian sun containing coconut, and came home with a bottle of coconut syrup for my pancakes.  It doesn't even have to have real coconut.  Ever had coconut M&Ms?  They don't even contain coconut (seriously), but I always had a pack on me in HI.  They're much harder to find back here on the mainland, but if I see them, I buy them.
Anyway, I just found these over the weekend:
These. are. even. betterthantheM&Ms!!!  I just ate an obscene amount.  AND they actually have coconut in them!  How sad am I that this is an Easter-only special?  Husband, if you're reading this (doubtful, he didn't even know I had a blog until yesterday...) I want a ton of coconut creme kisses for my birthday next month.  And a new sewing machine.