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Clearly, I have a strong affinity towards smocks. Sarah has more than her fair share of such tops. Most recently I made the “swing, swing smock” from Bend-the-Rules Sewing. I will definitely make this pattern again. The only problem I had was increasing the template from the book to the suggested size. It turns out that the increase I did make was the right size for Sarah now. I’ll need to get more copier-savvy when I want to make a larger size. There are a couple spots that turned out a little wonky, but I think I will live with them for now. Despite the wonky spots, it is pretty cute, no?



A judicious use of my hedgehog twill tape from Superbuzzy. Hee hee. Are hedgehogs as cute in person as they are on Japanese fabric and trims?


When I showed Brad the smock, he said, “I think you have made enough smocks. You are ready to move on.” Enough smocks? Is there such a thing?

Just a couple weeks until Sarah turns 1. I have been trying to make a list of gift suggestions to pass along to family who ask. I am working hard to avoid the onslaught of plastic crap that usually accompanies gift-giving occasions. So far, I have been thinking:

-a Stokke Tripp Trapp

-a long-sleeve Zutano swing dress in this print

-a couple of pairs of wiggle pants from Hanna Andersson (the only pants that fit well over a big cloth diaper bum)

-and maybe a pair of two of new Baby Legs

What else does a one year old need? Maybe just one more smock…





Joshua was a little nervous about going to school this morning.  He was sad that he didn’t know any of the kids in his class and nervous that he didn’t remember what his teacher looked like.  All of those nerves were quickly overcome when the bus arrived.  He didn’t even turn around to give me a hug or kiss.  Just ran up the steps to the bus and made himself comfortable.

Sarah, on the other hand, didn’t adjust so easily.  I have hired a babysitter to watch her for 10 hours a week while I work.  Sarah may not be as intense as Lizzie or as busy as Joshua, but she has the same persistence and stamina.  She screamed for the vast majority of 2 hours.  I kept thinking she was calming down.  No such luck.  I did go and comfort and nurse her a couple times.  What would have happened if I had signed her up for a daycare? I know that she will get used to Shannon and eventually be excited to play with her.  I also know that she will survive the interim.  The real question is, will I?

Joshua’s birthday, viruses, wedding anniversary, back-to-school, first day of kindergarten, garage sale, Rally Sunday. Just to name a few of the things going on in our household lately (or coming too soon).

Last Thursday, Joshua turned 5 years old. We celebrated with pancakes for breakfast and a trip to the fair. Nothing says, “Happy Birthday” like some deep-fried food on a stick.  Per Joshua’s request, we came home and had rice and tofu for dinner. No, it was not in response to the fair food, he just loves rice and tofu. Add some peas to his plate and you’ve got his all-time favorite meal. I never claimed the child was normal.


After the kids were asleep, I settled in for my own personal birthday tradition. I watched the video of Joshua’s birth. I never claimed I was normal either.

I also watched some video of Lizzie when she was around one year. I was a regular waterworks by then. I suffered the double-whammy of remembering those oh-so-long-ago moments and realizing that my baby is almost the same age.


It won’t be pretty around here on September 24th. I should talk someone into taking me to Costco to stockpile tissues.

Tomorrow may be another tissue-fest. Joshua starts kindergarten. On the one hand, I might be doing cartwheels once he is on the bus for the sheer relief of not having to be primary caregiver to a very active, very “spirited” young boy for a few hours. On the other, it is a big milestone. What happened to my happy Buddha baby? How did he get to be 5 and going off to all-day kindergarten?  That’s worth a couple tissues (even if he is a stinker)!

No time to cry long.  I have a boatload to do at work and plenty of prep work for our garage sale on Saturday.  If I can just survive through Sunday afternoon, I have this as a carrot dangling in front of me:


Hand-delivered from Japan.  One of Brad’s co-workers just got back from a trip there (we are both a little jealous).  Before she left, he asked her if she could buy a craft book for me.  I didn’t want to overwhelm her with specific titles since she doesn’t speak or read Japanese, nor is she a Japanophile craft blogger.  I think Brad’s instructions were along the lines of “a book of sewing patterns for little girls with a European feel”.  I’m pretty pleased with the result.