Wednesday, July 25, 2012

30 Weeks

An ultrasound yesterday revealed that my most important little works-in-progress are coming along nicely. They are about the same size: A is 3 lbs 5 oz, B is 3 lbs, 6 oz, though A is measuring slightly bigger. Factor in the margin of error, and they are probably right about the same size. A is now head-down (yay!) and B is head-down, but on a diagonal (oblique). I am feeling really good, especially considering I'm the size of a full-term pregnancy and I still have about two months to go.

I was showered with lots of love and generosity on Saturday; my good friend, mom, and husband conspired to throw a wonderful baby shower. We had a great time. I really loved all the homemade gifts, and the thoughtfulness that went into purchasing items for two babies. Seeing the nursery fill up is exciting, but also surreal. Someday our sons will come out and be among us in the world. I still can't believe it.

Since my mom was here for the weekend, we got right to work in the sweatshop sewing area to make things for the babies' room. Most pressing was a set of six curtains. Our lovely nursery is located in the heart of the house, and has not one or two, but three sets of double french doors. If we want the babies to sleep (and WE DO), we have to get curtains up to make it quiet and dark in there.

Obviously still a WIP!

Let's just say we had our work cut out for us with 20 yards of curtain.

We made the curtains double sided, so they are extra thick and also look nice from the other side. I picked the classic Joel Dewberry's Herringbone for the living room and hallway doors, and a cheerful mix of Kona Snow and Take Flight in Cherry for the kitchen. The ties are simply linen.

Living Room

Inside the babies' room, there is one set of yellow elephants, and two sets of a pieced combo of AMH's Bubble Burst, Kona Charcoal, and a teal polka dot.

Choosing this combo was a day's work in itself. Originally, I got the polka dots for the whole length of the door. But a cursory drape pre-sewing was displeasing - polka dots and elephants together sort of look like the circus. Fine for some, but it wasn't working for us. After convening a committee of family members, we came up with this new combo. I like it. It's cheerful and bright, yet boyish.

Since we can't paint the walls, I like having all these warm, colorful fabrics in the room. I would have gone with a full panel of Bubble Burst, if I had it to do over again. I had no idea how difficult it is to choose curtain fabric for such a large area. But, as my wise husband said, the kids will want to change it in a few years anyway.

But the whip-cracking fun didn't end there!

Mom and I made a couple of fabric boxes for the boys' toiletries. There is nothing better for these than a cotton/linen blend. I loved using my best fat quarters for my sons, in a place where I will see and use them every day. And later on, I'm sure they will enjoy storing their own little toys inside. I've been practicing some embroidery stitches so I can put their initials on the boxes.

 Of course I couldn't resist a little treat for myself too. My Bernina has a new pal - a little fabric box from some Far Far Away that I have been hording.

Sweet, sweet organization.

I can finally cross the last of the pillows off my list. It was easy to whip up a pair in ultra soft AMH velveteen - just made a simple envelope closure. (We're knee-deep in pillows over here, and I love it.) Mr Awesome observed that our apartment is slowly turning more 70s with this recurring mustard fabric/potted plant theme...but he's not complaining.

 This cozy spot is quickly becoming one of my favorite places.

What could possibly be left to make for the nursery, you ask? Here is the current list:
1. Fabric books
2. One more receiving blanket
3. A small wall-hanging
4. Cloth ball
5. Tidy up that crazy place.
6. I'm considering making a rag rug for their bedroom floor. Braiding a million yards of cloth - yay. Stitching together said yards - meh.

Manageable! I think it just might happen.

Meanwhile, I have a few non-baby items brewing:
1. A wall-hanging for a friend
2. Paisley Sunrise
3. All I have left to do for Mumu and my brother's quilt is to cut away the binding basting and stitch in my signature. Victory! They'll get their very own blog posts very soon, but I did spread them out to admire them in the eye of the crafting storm nursery.

I can't wait to show them off to you! Check out more great WIPs at Lee's:

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

29 Weeks

Only 7-9 more weeks to go!

The past month or so, I'd really been feeling the pressure to get "everything" done, so we'll be "ready" when the babies arrive. As time - and with it, the ability to reach anything below my knees - slips by, these terms are becoming amorphous. "Ready" to bring home two infants? Probably not possible. "Everything" has transformed from a picture-perfect nursery, completely toddler-proofed home, and every personal goal for the next ten years met, into the basic baby essentials, a few handmade items, and enough furniture-rearranging to make our home functional for our new, 4-person family.

29 weeks
I'm not saying I haven't tried to fight reality by making long to-do lists, but I have started to divide them into essential and nonessential columns. Finishing all my little projects (and starting 75 others) seemed totally do-able two months ago. But fabric, I've discovered, is pretty heavy. And big. And requires a lot of crawling around on the floor.

Some things (like making quilts for each baby, walking more than a block at a time, and seeing anything below my belly button) are going to have to wait until after - much after - they are born.

And that's okay. My new mantra, like all things pregnancy, is to enjoy the (very slow) process. Little by little, I'm completing small projects, and it feels really good to fill the nursery with handmade touches to welcome our babies.

A few receiving blankets, the perfect weight with a combo of voile and flannel;

Some black and white blocks to hang by their changing table so they have something interesting to look at (and later grab for);

and a matching pair of taggies made out of my husband's old flannel shirts. They are so soft!

The nursery inherited our slightly worn cotton throw pillows, so the living room got a new set (fabric selected by Mr Awesome, no less!). I am so grateful to my mom for helping me out with these. Ironing and cutting yardage is too much for me, so she cut, ironed, and pinned, while I sat at the machine and sewed. A beautiful partnership!

Looking at this picture made me laugh a little. I guess we really like things that come in twos.

These blocks came from the Mumu scraps. When I finish that quilt's binding, it will go on our bed, where the pillows might join it. For now though, I'm enjoying all the pillow comfort I can get on the couch.

As for Mumu itself, it's currently somewhere in this pile, along with my brother's quilt, Paisley Sunrise, and a couple of minis, and God knows what else. My sister, visiting for the weekend, aptly commented, "Wow. You have a lot of quilts." I guess so. How did that happen? They are everywhere.

I've also got a little hand-piecing going - a beautiful cloth ball from I Love Patchwork. I want to put a bell into the ball so the kids will get a cool sound when they play with it, but my husband assures me everyone will think it's a cat toy (we don't even have cats). What do you think?

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