Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sewing for Africa

I asked.
Was given permission.
I'm giving my best.
I'm sewing items to sell at Eco Chic Boutique in Fargo, ND.
30% of my profit will go to support orphan care in Kenya! Why? 
Because this is what I can do from where I am at.
Because my friend Lindsay and her family is there and this is what I can do to help her ministry. 

This is my new adventure, involving what I love, Sewing and paying it forward.  

Eco Chic Boutique, a green boutique in Fargo ND. Their focus is on Baby, Mom & Home. With a dash of Pet stuff thrown in there for good measure is where I am selling my goods. They aim to buy safer, healthier and locally made products.  I tried selling my recycled feed bags when they first opened but were not that great of a hit.  Since then I slowly have gotten to know the owner, Ms. Maria and it's been one fun journey!  I asked about making some 'wet bags' for the cloth diaper department and now I am on to making booties and multi-purpose bags/purses (only a few though). I plan on making a few smaller bags for make-up or the random items in a diaper bag or the miscellaneous small toys floating around. It's is all exciting and all the same nothing major but it's something I am enjoying. Maria wants this to be fun as well, not a chore or I do because I feel I have to.  It's is all consignment, so it makes me think a little more about 'what is really going to sell' and it's done at my own pace. Even though at times I feel, if there isn't any available, I'm not able to help Eco make a sale'. Goofy I know.  I do not know what the future holds or what I'll be creating but I do hope this continues to be a fun adventure that fills me up instead of draining me. 

Once I decided that making the wet bags and booties were selling well, I decided that I would send some of my profit to my friend who helps with orphan care in Kitale Kenya. It's what I can do from where I am at.  

How is this all happening? Most of what I do is during nap time or late evenings.  It helps that the husband is working on a project that requires time spent doing his thing and I don't feel so guilty for sewing up a storm.  We have made more time to go on dates too, this part I love. :)  

Next time, I'll have some pictures to show of my goods and give an update of how this is all turning out.

Until Next Time,
    Lexie ><> 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Oh the faces she can make!

A few pictures of my Eleanore!
Her daddy Jim loves this 'angry bird' face she makes, we both think it's a little comical.     

Painting, of course it was all over. 

And there it is again, my beauty. (:  

Until Next time,
Lexie ><> 

A place for all my pretties...

    I have been meaning to make a place to hang my necklaces, bracelets and earrings for some time. I even had all of the supplies but just was not getting around to it. Well friend Melissa at her blog made one and that gave me the extra push to get my done.  I am glad it's done, my pretties are now hanging, I know what I have and it actually reminds me to wear them. (:  

My supplies: 
 spray paint
 pet screen
 material - of your choice
 foam board
push pins
some sort of crafting glue
tacks or staple gun.
 this is a really odd photo, taken looking down and trying not to get my shadow in the picture, weird.

Here is my finished product, with all the pretties. (:  

    I painted the frame, sewed the pet screen and material together, glued the material to the foam board, cut the foam board snugly to fit the frame, and stapled the screen to the frame.  Then used push pins to hang my necklaces and bracelets; the earring are in the pet screen. (Pet screen: like window screen but it's rubber like and has a bit larger holes.)
    The board does not have to be as complicated but I wanted to hang my earrings, that is what the pet screen is for.  You wouldn't need to staple the screen to the frame, it's stiff enough to lay flat or it could be tacked down instead.

   For a more simpler version, check out Melissa's, it's super cute and when you're sick of the back ground color, you take if off, cut a new piece and Waa-Laa. A new look. (:

                                                  Until next time,  
                                                            Lexie ><> 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Life with hearing loss

Hearing loss, part of life for me.  

I have always needed a hearing aid for my right ear, never really wore one until recently.  In December of 2008 I had a continuous ring/static noise with varied noise levels of my left ear (the good one!) start.  When I couldn't hear the pastor at church talk with the aid of a microphone, I decided it was time to figure out what was happening. And I also was declining to attend group events or chose not to participate in group events due to the effort it took to listen.  After a few 'lets try this' approaches, an ENT doctor in Fargo decided to have a CAT scan of my head.  The scan looked as if nothing wrong but Dr. P asked another ENT doctor at the University of Minnesota to check it out and there the ball really started to roll.  I am very thankful to get into Dr. L since he is not taking patient, how blessed I am.  March of 2011 I visited the U to see if Dr. L could tell me what's going on.  And he did, I have a genetic bone disease called Otosclerosis, this happens to most women of childbearing age and it's calcification of the middle ear. One only really knows if they have Otosclerosis for sure is by surgery but the CAT scan can show too.  At the University, they have the technology to change the colors of the CAT scan, in which Dr. L did and it showed white around my ear bones, new bone growth.  Then we discussed options, surgery or no surgery.  Well not exactly, there are a few options such as a diet of eating low, low sodium which is almost impossible or trying a hearing aid. I did actually try a hearing aid, but chose not to keep it. Reverse hearing loss is tricky to fix with an aid device.  I mulled over this surgery option for about 6 months and decided I was going to have surgery, then it took me one month to actually get to in.  This Dr. L is great, an ear surgeon and reminds me of my piano teachers dad. Full of pep and energetic, willing, appreciative, encouraging.  

How was surgery, (it happened Oct. 17th)?  It went very well, as expected and it took all of 1 hr and 45 minutes.  I now have platinum & titanium stapes prosthetic bone. I say, 'to bad that metal isn't on my finger in the form of a ring and a little jewel or two for sparkle' but I can't have everything I want, right? My middle ear  was fused together, causing me to loose the ability to hear the low tones. The stapes bone was removed and replaced in order to have it work again, the other two bones of the middle ear were shaved of the new bone growth to have them be more 'normal' as well.  The recovery time to wake up from surgery was very long for me. I spent a good deal in stage 1 and stage 2 recovery. If anyone has been under general anesthesia, you know.  Husband was great, to sit and wait a long, long time (9:30a - 4:00p) for me and then drive me home.  He was my responsible adult for 24 hrs. :)  I also had little to no pain, the discomfort I did had left about 8pm that night. 

I just had my follow up appointment with Dr. L on the 11th  of Nov. and the outside healing is good.  I even got to see my ear canal and the surgery cut on camera!  I also have a good 6 months to see full recovery, I went in thinking it would be a couple of months. I had to have a skin graph along with the prosthetic and the skin graph has to 'thin'.  But I have hope, I can hear Dr. L tuning fork!  I don't seem/think I hear much of anything from my left ear, it sure makes life interesting.  Thank goodness for my hearing aid in the right ear.  I will have a audio gram in 8 weeks and then 6 months to see how I am progressing.  I am actually pretty excited to have to happen and see what's up!  

So, here's the last few years of life with hearing loss. The first 25 years were simple, hearing loss in the right side and my left ear compensated immensely for the right side.  Now, it's a little more complicated.  

Until Next time,   Lexie ><>   

Friday, November 4, 2011

My Music Makers

Entertainment of the week!  
EKW certainly enjoys her daddy playing guitar.  
She loves to dance, her daddy loves to play!! 

Strumin' away. 

CMW rockin' out with her dad. 

EKW just getting in on the music making.  
That Ukulele is just a little tough to get a hold of.  

Monday, October 24, 2011

ABC and 123

 I think I said back yonder that I never post what I am making and maybe it's because most of what I make are 'remakes' of someone else's idea.  Well not today, I have made one too many bags out of pet screen material and they are never the same, one thing I love about sewing and designing.

The ABC and 123 tote!  

CMW sits with us in church and usually ends up coloring all over our notebook and such. 
I have now solved that problem and I guess making another tote was what I needed to do today!  
I made this ABC and 123 tote for CMW to be her church tote and it was so fun to make. I tried my best at making a divider and my thought is one side will be for activity pages, stickers, writing utensils and the like; the other for returned/new library books. I chose not to put in pockets or individual dividers because I figured she wouldn't use them, the one divider will be a large enough challenge.   

The yellow/orange stripe is a bit of a ruffle and for some reason ruffles can add so much even if it isn't much of one. 

This material bundle I couldn't resist when I was at the quilt shop and I usually don't buy expensive material 'just for fun' but these 3 fat quarters had to come home with me.  Today was the day I found the reason why I purchased them.   :-)

Until Next Time, 
                  Lexie ><> 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Big Crunchy Leave Piles!

Mawga Paula was here visiting for the week while this mama was and still is on the mend from my ear surgery. Of course the last day was here and we decided to eat it up!  Mawga got a little rake happy and made a very large pile of leaves and the girls got in on the fun.  

A bad shadow but it's the best I got and you can still see all her happiness! 

Big, Crunchy, Leave piles, one thing to enjoy about Fall.

Until Next Time, 
    Lexie ><> 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Be creative, in your own way!

I hardly write what i have been creating since my thought for this blog to be more about our family and I could easily make many post about what I have been doing.  But lately I have been creating gifts and each one has been 'Just So Fun' that I am going to tell about it. :-)   

I hardly make baby boy gifts and this basket I made was super fun!
A few of the items I created for it.
baby boy onesie with an applique tie for a future nephew.

robot booties for the same future nephew.

The basket for the future nephew. 
burp cloths, wash cloths, tabby/sensory blanket and few more non-crafted items to go along. 

 A cousin of mine was married and I am into accenting towels and dish cloths, here is one of many.

A simple little apron for the same cousin. 

These are Wet Bags (for use with cloth diapers) and were made for Eco Chic a green boutique here in town.  
12x12 zipper or drawstring options.  

My latest creative journey was making this stand for my recycled feed bag at Sydney's Health Market. 
This project wasn't to tricky, it included a piece of  plywood for the triangle feet cut with a jig-saw. One railing spindle, spray paint, 5 screw in L-hooks, screws for the feet and a power screwdriver. 

I promise this is the last picture. :-) 
I made myself this little clutch (teal green stripe) a few weeks back and then I saw this crossword material and Could.Not.Resist getting it for my grams.  My grams is in her 70's and does a crossword a day, well almost.  If it's to tricky or here's an example 'it's all about the Periodic Table', she didn't even try.  She just threw it away without letting it bother her. Amen to that! 
And i made hers a bit larger, more the the size of a pencil case in which I'm a little bummed by this but I do think it will be more useful.  My clutch is only the size of a check book and just a little tight for my taste in which next time I'll make it an inch bigger.
Bonus: this is my grams birthday gift (and no, she won't read this in time)!! 

There you have it, a little look into my sewing world. 

And if you say 'wow, she's just so creative', hop on over to this blog 'The Better Mom' and be encouraged by this post.  I am sure it will start you wheels turning to find your own creative juices and be encouraged to be Creative in you Own Way!

Until Next Time, 
          Lexie ><> 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Like I promised...

Another post, Wow! I hope I keep it up!  
Last night I watched the documentary Restrepo  and what a look on combat life of a Soldier.  
It is one to watch and you'll end up with even more respect for our fighting men then before.  

And onto this evening, like I promised, a few good pictures of my girls. 


Isn't this cool face painting?  For the Mr's company picnic, there was face painting, balloon art & blow-up games.  C wanted a 'puppy face' and here it is.  She also got a poodle balloon and EKW received a flower.  

 EKW - 14 mos. 

CMW and I planted her some sunflowers outside her window.  They were so fun to look at & to pick fresh flower from too, there were so many I never felt bad cutting off a few for the kitchen table! 

EKW rocks this horse like no other 15 month old.  She is one we need to keep an eye on.  Not only does she move this horse across the floor but she likes to do tricks and stand on the saddle while holding on.  
Ahhh, craziness!  

CMW is now into taking pictures since I take pictures of EKW doing wild and interesting acts.  I love this though because before this, she has been camera shy.  

All I have to say, the Dad was in charge of this...

Now, it's off to sewing...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A few changes... well one to start with.

Like usual, it's been a while since my last post... no comment, we've had a few changes around here.

To start and for the major change is the Mr. has been away working, weekly. It is not something we love but it's call 'experience' and 'no one else can do the job right now, so it's up to him' (until they find a replacement!).  And the other bummer of it all, it's a good 5.5 hours West.  We are now going on week 5 and the girls and I have our routine down pat.  Even CMW is now talking on the phone; she thinks it silly and giggles more then she talks but we both enjoy listening to her.

The Lord is Good!  And I know this all by hindsight; the one thing I love, looking back and seeing it was what was suppose to happen, even if I was not to sure of it.  A friend from church has a small home daycare and originally she wanted it to be similar to 'drop in' childcare for her friends but has turned into full time. Well I asked if she would be interested in watching my girl starting September one morning a week.  She agreed, and I agreed as well even though I felt like I was taking advantage of our money by paying another to watch my girls when I can easily do everything I do with them. Then this adventure of the Mr. presented itself after the first week and ever since then I have felt that God was working and it was suppose to be.  I am able to have a few hours to myself, get errands and appointments finished and my girls go play with 5 other playmates and have a blast. What's more neat is there are GIRLS to play with. Meaning most of my friends have boys that are the age of my girls age and it's just not as fun and here there are girls. They love it.        

We don't know the end to this job situation, I just hope it's over before the severe snow flies.  And I am not sure we can endure much more without our daddy and husband.  One only realizes what's missing once it's gone and I can see this now.

So, one would think without a spouse I'd have all the time to blog after the girls are in bed. Well, you see I love to sew and that takes over everything else.

Next up, a few great stories + pictures of my girls and a few sewing projects to show off. Oh, and I've been meaning to write about bible study too, so stay tuned!  

Wish me luck!

Lexie ><> 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Our Kitty Sage.

Our kitty Sage is a year old. 

This picture does not make Sage look like an easy going kitty but CMW can do just about anything with her add she tolerates it all. 
Her and our Dog Macy are the best-est of friends after CMW.  Sage even is the instigator of some brawls too so most of the time I don't worry about all the rough housing that is going on between them. 

CMW & Sage 9.2011
Sage looks large in this picture but really she is a dainty cat. 
And what a great picture of my CMW!

CMW & Sage 11.2010

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

It's Big, it's Brown and it's Comfy.

So I found this re-purposed piece of furniture at Eco Chic Boutique here in Fargo and thought it was lovely. 
I went to look again and of course it was sold. It's not something I need and as you can see it isn't very functional as a dresser but in person it sure is beautiful.    

So the same day, Mr. JAW calls me about some furniture that is an incredible deal and sends me a few pictures. 
So here it is, it's Big, it's Brown large corduroy microfiber and it sure is Comfy!  
 I think we now have a little to much furniture for our living room but I won't complain, I have new furniture!  Waa-Hoo!  
I can now use my creative juices and move the small items out or just get rid of them!  
It makes a world of difference when there isn't a lot 'clutter'. 

Now the joke is, 'I asked for a dresser and came home with new living room furniture!'

Monday, September 12, 2011

Celebrating five years!

It was our five year anniversary this last Friday (9/9/11) and we had a wonderful time. I felt like the day was not going to end but it was certainly fun.

We found ourselves a sitter and the way we went. For lunch and a massage that is. It was great. Then we did some shopping since shopping with out kids is always enjoyable (at least for me.)!

Our evening plans found us at the company picnic celebrating 40 years. So while we had our afternoon to ourselves, I wanted to attend the picnic so we did. Wanzek always does a great job with their annual picnic and last year we missed it. Our girls had a blast with big blow up games, face painting and balloon characters.

Here is CMW with her 'puppy face paint' and her pink puppy balloon and EKW flower balloon.

At this link is one of my favorite wedding pictures. Take a look! :-)

Just thought i'd share how fantastic our day was and make a post for the memory books!

Paul Bunyan Land

Back in August the girls and I took a trip to visit my parents. I will have to say that it was one crazy trip with to many kid activities.
My mom wanted to take all her grand kids to Paul Bunyan. All find and dandy but when there is only 1 adult and 5 kids, 3 being younger then 4, I thought someone needed to go with. Low and behold, it was not me. Thank goodness. I needed a break, so did EKW.

CMW to this day still does not like the 'big man'. That is Paul Bunyan. She says, 'he is scary'. When you first come into Paul Bunyan Land, your name is taken and Paul is a gigantic statue that welcomes you with this jolly lumberjack voice, stating your name. My mom commented that each time they walked passed him, she hung on to her for dear life. (I would have a picture but my camera taking the pictures did not come back with a Paul picture.)

From the looks of the pictures every one had a great time. CMW went on all the rides possible. Her Mawga P even had to get off the swinging ship do to sudden sickness from riding the 2nd time. Poor Mawga, but she certainly was a good sport about riding rides. And a bonus! This Mawga P. also went on the ferris wheel for CMW, due to a fear of heights she does not like to attempt rides such as these but like I said, she was a good sport.

Here' the troop, my sister the only one not available.

The Mawga P with CMW and cousin J.

I believer this picture is next to big Paul and CMW is covering her ears cause he is loud.

Now that September is here, hopefully i'll be back to posting more.
But I assume, like usual my sewing will take over. :-)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Meet the Pony!

Back in July, after vacation, we went to visit lexie's parents to celebrate her moms birthday. We also managed to fit in what CMW is been wanting to do but it just never gets done; to ride the pony!

So here she is. Meet Duck! She's the pony at my parents place, owned by the sister and husband.

CMW had a good time and I think once was enough but she would go again if given the chance.

And this is Cousin Z! Isn't the cowboy hat a good touch?!

A few of the kids watching the pony get saddled up.

After all the kids got a ride, my sister rode her for a little bit and boy did she get a ride of her life. I don't even know if she's ever had such an exciting ride before. We now know that pony can buck and rear like no other. My poor sister got the brunt of it too but now we also learned she needs a little more work before any younger person decides to try Duck out on their own.
How about you, have you had an interesting ride that includes a pony?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Vacation Fun !

We took a family vacation with Jim's family to the North Shore. All 13 of us stayed at one rental house up the shore in the middle of the woods for 6 days.
Jim, myself and the girls did some decent hiking even with the parks being closed,we enjoyed the sunshine, water, our time together and the extended family.

Cousin J and CMW at the zoo. While most of the adults went to see the Glensheen Mansion, the dads took these two to a kid friendly attraction.
EKW walking the shore

We visited Two Harbors and wanted to go see the pier/light house but there was construction and would not allow visitors. So we walked the water and picked rocks, watched the boats get loaded up and visited the train.

We went to Gooseberry and Temperance state parks and forgot our camera, so no photos there. But Jim did swim and participated in cliff jumping, CMW thought it was to chilly to swim. EKW and mom stayed out of the water.

We also spent an afternoon in WI, we went swimming and hiking. Here is one of the water falls. It was a nice park with a decent swimming beach and hike.

And one thing I enjoyed but would never advise anyone else to pay was the train ride from the historic depot/train museum. It took us to north Duluth and back. It was nice to just sit, watch and listen to the speaker but I would rather paid for the trip all the way to Two Harbors and actually get to see more of the lake.

We also hit up the Alpine slide at Spirit Mtn. on our way home. I would say, that's worth the price. CMW went with her mom and dad. The trip down was just as fun as the trip back up.

Among all this fun, we managed to squeeze in time to visit friends and it was So.Worth.It.
Next years vacation: TBA