Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 - How'd I do? 2013 - What's in Store?

Last year I made a list of twenty goals to work towards in 2012.  Here's how I fared...
  1. Cook something new each week. - Nope!
  2. Maybe add a drink. - Definitely not, considering I was pregnant for 9 months!
  3. Light more candles at dinner. - We did this occasionally and I did really enjoy it, as did the kids.
  4. Do Cheers! - On occasion.
  5. Make time for more live music. - Nope! : (  Totally bummed about this one.
  6. Speaking of music, get violin refurbished and start playing again already! - Nope!
  7. Take the kids to hear a symphony...maybe in the summer? - Nope!
  8. Go camping again! Perhaps more than once?! - Nope! Waaaaaa....have I mentioned how much we love to go camping?!?!
  9. Go somewhere fun without the kids. - Ha, who was I kidding...we never go anywhere without our kids!
  10. Take an "official" family picture. - YES!!!  We did this, and we're so glad we did!  Thanks to Mary for the great pictures!
  11. Make, make, make more handmade. - YES, I think I made a lot and I feel so proud of it all! : )
  12. Can some homemade jam. - YES! I will never forget that gorgeous June day that the kids and I went blackberry picking and I came home and made jam.
  13. Make a great pie from scratch. - No, but I did make a pretty fab birthday cake for Maggie.
  14. Read 10 books. - I read a few, but not 10.
  15. Knit a shawl. - I am about 30 rows away from being done with one, but it's not going to happen this year.
  16. Make a quilt for charity. - Unfortunately no, but this is something I really want to do.
  17. Sell something homemade. - YES, I am proud of the small success I had with my Etsy shop.  To think that someone out there is using something I made makes me smile. 
  18. Go to bed earlier, get up earlier. - Ha!  Not sure I actually slept much at all. ;-)
  19. Keep up with weekly yoga class. - Nada.
  20. Take more walks. - If only...
So, according to this list, I accomplished only about 25% of my goals.  It's funny to think that one year ago today, I had no idea what the year 2012 would have in store for me.  I didn't know I'd have a Lyla, or a very small business, or that we'd take a family vacation to Disney World, and that I'd actually think it was the greatest vacation EVER.  It was quite a life-changing, amazing year!


As I look ahead to 2013, I have so many things flitting around in my head, another long list of goals, dreams, and aspirations.  I might share some of those thoughts here, or maybe I'll leave it to fill with the things I've accomplished instead...hmmm, tbd. 

I truly love sharing parts of my life in this space...it does me so much good!  I never really know if I have real readers out there, but if you do enjoy my blog, or if you just stumbled across it, thanks for taking the time to stop by.  Happy New Year friends!      

Friday, December 28, 2012

In these days that follow...

We've been relaxing...

Relaxing

We've been enjoying our treats...

Treating

We've been gaming, family style...

Gaming

We've been setting up her room...

Setting Up

I've been plopped on the couch with my treats.  Was completely surprised and thrilled to receive a Kindle Fire!  And that pretty little house is the first part of an embroidery pattern I'm working on - learning something new once again...


I would like to say that I wish things were like this all the time, but truth be told...I eventually start to crave my normal routine again.  Only a few more days left in this wonderful year, though.  And, I hope we can relax as much as possible and enjoy each other.  Hope your Christmas was wonderful and that you've been enjoying these days that follow with those you love!  

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Wishes

Family_hill

AllThreeKiddos


It has been an amazing and wonderful year for our family, but it has been a year full of tragedy for too many in our world.  Holding so many close to our hearts these days and praying for peace and healing in the days to come.  Wishing you all a blessed holiday season filled with those you love.

Peace & Love ~ Laurel, Mark, Maggie, Joe, & Lyla

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

She Sews...

Scrappy Bookmarks...

Ingredients:

Bookmarks cut from cereal boxes
Scrap fabrics
Glue stick
Scissors/Rotary cutter - For the ADULT helping!!
Enthusiasm
Patience

Ingredients

Step 1 (KID): Glue and press fabric scraps to one side of bookmark.  Pieces can overlap and should hang over edges of bookmark.

Glue

Press

Do both sides!

Other Side

Step 2 (KID + ADULT):  Stitch fabric to bookmark.  She did simple lines.

SEW!

Step 3 (ADULT): Trim fabric to edge of bookmark.  If desired, zigzag stitch around edge.

Trim

Step 4 (ADULT): Sit back and watch her repeat.  Cringe a little when you see her choosing your most treasured scraps.  Pause.  Admire her good taste.  Smile at her hard work!


Wonder how she got so big...

Watch

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

For Lyla

Lyla has something she would like to share with you.  Please excuse her, she's feeling a bit bashful today.

Litlle Miss Bashful

Or, maybe not.

Maybe Not

She presents her new pair of "Quick Change Trousers".  A favorite pattern of her Mama's by Anna Maria Horner (here and here), made once before, and hopefully to be made again and again.  This pair was done with Little Folks Voile (outer) and the softest, sweetest Folksy Flannel (inner).  She thinks these will keep her legs nice and cozy this winter.
   
Lyla's Quick Change Trousers

She wants you to see the back too, with the little surprise patch of fabric right on her bum.   

Quick Change Trousers Back

Perfectly placed for a girl who loves tummy time.

Tummy Time  

 Oh, and she can't let you go without peeking at her toes popping out of those soft cuffs!

Cute Cuffs

Stop by again and maybe she'll finally share that quilt she's laying on. 
 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Small Things

So, about a week ago Mark and I were chatting and I said "I'm done with sewing for a while.  I'm putting my machine away and I'm not getting it out until next year."  I'm sure he wondered why I needed to make this big affirmation about sewing.  But, I was feeling frustrated with a simple dress I decided to make for Maggie that was not working out.  And the fact that I was sewing with my baby in a baby carrier, when we should've been chilling on the couch.  Not to mention, I sew in my kitchen, I make a big mess, and if I don't have the time to clean it all up, I find it's a giant distraction.

Journal Cover

I have only sewn a few things since Lyla was born and they have mostly been complete flops.  A few weeks back, though, my friend Raedene came over for the morning to sew - I "taught" her how to make a quilted journal cover.  It was so fun, even though all I got done that morning was cutting out my patchwork squares.  She finished her cover that day (check it out here), and it took me several weeks of sewing here and there to finish mine up.  That's ok though, because I really enjoyed this project.  I made it for my friend Mary, who made the most amazing birth announcements for us after Lyla was born.  Mary took an idea in my head and turned it into something SO amazing on paper - quite a talented lady!  I remembered her once admiring my covered journal so I knew this would be the perfect gift. 

These little journal covers are so fun because you can truly get carried away with the creativity aspect, but not be overwhelmed by something big.  But, I think I loved making this because it was so intentional and fulfilling to make something for someone else.  I had to take my time with each part - I tried a new quilting design, which I love, and I did a little embroidery on the inside. 

Journal Cover Inside

So, now, I've been re-thinking my big affirmation about not sewing.  Sewing is my outlet and makes me happy.  I like to think that creating things for others makes them happy too.  Perhaps the secret to my success right now is picking small projects that I can take my time with.  No deadlines, and deserving recipients.  One thing at a time.  I happen to have a little girl who could use a cuddly flannel blanket, and not to mention a pile of fabric to work with, so I think I'll start there.   


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankful

Feeling most grateful this year for all of the beautiful people in my life...family and friends, near and far.  For my husband, who is simply the best!  For our cozy home and the little people that have filled it up.  And, for the joy they bring to my life.  Happy Thanksgiving!

  Complete

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Two Months


That's Lyla with my friend Stacey who came to visit last week.  You never know what you're getting yourself into when you go to visit a newborn...she got herself into a couple of hours of swaying, patting, and shushing to keep our sweet Lyla happy.  Thankfully, they both seemed to enjoy it.  Did I mention I have the  best friends in the world?  My Mom, Nana, also put some serious time in with our little girl when she spent 3 days with us this month.  She pulled out all of her old tricks reciting old poems she used when my siblings and I were little.
  



This girl...if she is sure about one thing, it is that she likes to spend her days in someone's arms.  She likes to smile too and swing her right arm around over and over again.  And, just the other day she figured out how to get her hand to her mouth...boy did that make her happy.  We call her our little hedgehog, because she has a distinct noisy little grunt (truly, we have no idea what hedgehogs sound like).     

It can be hard at times on this Mom (and her Dad, too)...when she is sleeping peacefully in my arms and someone or something else needs attention - I carefully put her down just to hear her wrestling around and fussing a few minutes later.  I am, unfortunately, one of those people who is distracted by my floors that need vacuuming, or *ahem* makes a ridiculous list of handmade Christmas gifts expecting to just squeeze it all in.  But,  I'm giving in to her warmth and charm and I'm learning to let things go and just hold her while I can.  I know that I will never look back on these days and wish that I had vacuumed.  And, I'm sure I will miss this face! 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

And there went October

Just popping in with some snapshots of the month that we love so much in our house.  It was a little slower this year, but we managed to squeeze in some our favorite things. 

Trip to the Farmer's Market for pumpkins...
Halloween Buds

These little gals really brightened up October in our house.  I call them the "boo crew" - totally awesome (free printable!) dress-up cone girls printed from Mr. Printables.   Joe and I put them together one afternoon and the kids played with them for hours and hours.  I hope they come back every year...kind of like our Halloween Nativity!

Boo Crew 

A little bike riding outing on a lovely October Sunday afternoon.  
Bike Ridin

Spooky pumpkins and little trick-or-treaters...Buzz Lightyear and a not-so-spooky witch!  Little Buzz was going to be Captain America, but due to all of the pre-Halloween parties, he decided he wanted to mix it up.  He wore this same costume two years ago!  He had so much fun blasting down our street.  Little Miss Witch was a nice change from the princesses and fairies of years past only she insisted that she not be scary.  Ok by me.
IMG_0869

And THAT was October!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

One Month





Before Maggie was born (yes, I'm talking about Maggie, not Lyla), I had this idea in my head about what our first baby would be like and what my life as a Mom would be like.  I thought she'd like to be held all the time.  I thought she'd be up at night and during the day fussing and crying and I'd have to use my magic Mommy skills to soothe her.  I thought I'd spend my days at home holding her and watching daytime TV, and making elaborate dinners and packing Mark's lunch everyday (ha!). 

I couldn't have been farther from reality.  For the first six weeks, she slept all. the. time.  She slept through the night so early that I used to get up and go check and make sure she was ok.  She didn't cry or fuss much in the early days.  She was little Miss Independent from Day 1 and didn't need to be held as much as I would've liked.  She loved to be out in the world - shopping, places with lots of people, you name it. 

Anyway, it took me a couple of kids to realize that they are all so different and never what you expect nor do you have any control over it all.  Now we have Lyla.  She likes to be held close all the time.  She seems to like the comfort of home and lazy days on the couch.  Not a fan of car rides - oy!  She fusses about as much as I think an average baby fusses every day, which can be a little much at times.  She embraces the witching hour.  And, she's not so sure yet about sleeping through the night. *sigh*

I'd say Lyla is the closest we've come to *that* baby I imagined I'd have.  Life with her is exhausting at times, but easier because I let it be.  I've also learned that just when you think you know something to be true about your baby, they change the very next day!  You really truly have to enjoy every single minute.  And, that's just what we're doing. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Maggie's "Quilt"

In the weeks before Lyla was born, I was wondering when and if I would start nesting.  I definitely nested with the other two, and I tend to be a nesting kind of gal even when I'm not pregnant.  But, with Lyla, it just never kicked in.  What I did do was sew quilts...like a crazy person.  I admit to laying awake at night sometimes thinking about these 4 quilts I wanted to finish before she arrived.  I'm happy to report that I finished 3 of the 4 and all that remains on the 4th is some binding.  And, I managed to get my life in order for her arrival as well.  So, now, while I'm spending most of my time taking care of her and Maggie and Joe, and NOT sewing, I thought I'd share those quilts, one by one.

Maggie's quilt was the first finish.  This quilt is so very special to me.  The concept of a quilt for Maggie swirled around in my head for years.  The first bit of fabric I ever ordered 3 years ago was intended for a quilt for her.  That specific quilt never happened because she developed her disdain for the color red.  Then, I decided maybe a big quilt was too much work for such a picky little girl and made her a duvet cover instead.  But, that didn't work out so well either - too heavy, too shifty, just not right.

Maggie's Quilt Close-up

Last Spring, I just decided to start fresh and go big.  I started with a few fabric prints I knew she adored (purple, purple, purple) and just started pulling other fabrics from my stash and my scraps and just cut, cut, cut.  I didn't have a specific plan other than I wanted to do some sort of scrappy strip quilt.  Quickly I realized I needed a plan for this quilt, especially since it was to be twin size.  So, I flipped through my quilting books and fell in love with this "Quilt" pattern from Patchwork Style by Suzuko Koseki.  It was similar to the idea I had in my head, but it gave me a real pattern to work from.

Quilt from Patchwork Style by Suzuko Koseki

Maggie's favorite prints in all of my fabric stash were the purple Lizzy House stars and castles from 1001 Peeps.  Along with those I used a bunch of pink, purple, yellow, and blue prints.  And I added a nice Essex linen blend (Sand, I think) to soften the quilt a bit.   
           
The quilt is a smallish twin size at 66" x 89".  I never realized how tough it is to photograph such a big quilt!  I'm glad I took the time to do it though, because it was really my first opportunity to see it all spread out. 


Although hard to see in this photo, the back is made mostly from Jay McCarroll's For the Birds print in teal, which was essentially the front of that duvet cover that didn't work out.  I used some extra scraps and an Innocent Crush print to finish it off.


Now then...the quilting - oh, the quilting!!  Probably my favorite part and the part I cannot take credit for.  I had this quilt sent to Nancy Pease, a local longarm quilter who did this beautiful freeform fan design.  I knew I wanted something similar to a baptist fan design, because I liked the resemblance to rainbows.  Nancy did an amazing job!!  It was quite a splurge to have this done, but I was pretty set on a dense and free motion design for this quilt, which I knew I couldn't pull off.    


The best part about this quilt is that she LOVES it.  My picky little girl who "doesn't like the color red, or bows, or hearts, or strawberries for crying out loud...loves it!  It sounds silly but I felt like a weight was lifted when I finished it.  I hope it's something she can grow up with and that it will always comfort her.  Next up, Joe's quilt...

I am linking this project up to Craft Buds for their Craft Book Month!

Craft Book Month at Craft Buds

 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Lyla











Lyla Gray Krynock arrived on Tuesday September 18 at 9:22 am.  At 6 lb, 14 oz she is by far the smallest of our three, but so, so, sooooo very sweet.   She is such a calm, quiet, and snuggly little baby.  She has made it so easy for us to slow down and take in every bit of her.  She arrived with a head full of hair, the tiniest little legs, and the sweetest face.  I think she looks a bit like Joe.  Mark and I both noticed her ears that lay so flat against her head and I immediately recalled some journals my Mom wrote when I was born that described mine in the same way.

The kids are adjusting well with her arrival.  Maggie is absolutely in love with her and already taking the role of mini-Mommy, while Joe is taking his time getting to know her.  We are truly enjoying these early days with her.  We couldn't have asked for a more precious blessing in our lives.