family · random revelations · sewing

I killed the rainbow fish

DSCN4184

…atleast that is what the evidence points to. I have finally finished sewing the 9! dance costumes for the dance studio that my daughter attends. It was 1st time sewing with sequined fabric. It was tricky, but I got through it. These sequins are everywhere! They just follow you all around the house.

DSCN4309

DSCN4503

I usually listen to music while sewing, but today enjoyed the silence. It forced me to get lost in my thoughts. As I was finishing the costumes I thought to myself, ” If my home-ec teacher could see me now…”. And it was from there that I started down memory lane…

I was always the type of person who could be good at everything I wanted to do. Things just came easily to me. I hate to sound vain or that I’m “tooting my own horn”, but that’s just the way it was. If you know me personally, you would know that I am about as self critical as they come. But back to the story- I know I had alot of potential, but I never cared to apply myself . I had a pretty troubled upbringing and was headed in the wrong direction for a very long time. No one ever expected anything from me, nothing good anyway. With the exception of one person, there was no one who ever encouraged me to do anything positive. And that person was, and is, my grandma. It always seemed that she lived a world away, but she was the only one who really knew who I was inside and who I could be, and was excited about it! It wasn’t until recently that I came to one of the biggest revelations of my life. She is everything that I have ever aspired to be. My marriage, my children, my friendships with others, my relationship with God. She has had a hand in it all. She is the reason memories and traditions are so important to me. She is the reason I have a need to turn the mundane into a party. She has set the bar high. Not only for herself, but in her expectations and hopes for me. And it is because of her and the grace of God that I have far exceeded those. I don’t know why I’m feeling extra nostalgic today, just so many thoughts swimming around. Sometimes you have to remember where you’ve been to really appreciate where you are. I may not have followed the easiest path, but I am positive that I have come down the right one.  

DSCN4170

random revelations

Regaining My Chi

DSCN2992

I can’t believe it’s been so long since my last post. My life has changed so much since then. For starters, I started a quest to quit smoking in mid-January. Well, I’m glad to say that I am still smoke free 3 months later. While I am glad that I finally kicked the habit, it has really knocked the wind out of my sails. I smoked for about 20 years and chalked it up to being a creative. It is what I did in the spontaneous hours of the wee morning. So there has not been much going on around here on the note of creativity. A few things I’ve had to get done and a few experiments that I’ll share at a later time. I’m done mourning the passing of a bad habit and I’m ready to get on with being a happy, productive non-smoker. Easier said than done. Luckily, I am very blessed to have a wonderful support group of my hubby and good friends. I know that these people love me  through it all and are not afraid to let me know when I am deceiving myself. Which, have I mentioned, I am very good at!! So if everybody will raise your mug, whether it be filled with coffee or hot cocoa, I would love to give a little toast. “Here’s to new beginnings, good friends and good health!!”

**I just wanted to clarify a few things before bidding you Happy Weekending. I have never smoked inside my house for those of you wondering about the quality and integrity of my work. And I probably wash my hands more than a surgeon. Kind of weird for such a clean freak to have such a dirty habit. It was a difficult choice to post about this personal struggle for the reason that this is not just a personal journal, but a reflection of revel Designs. It is just in me to be brutally honest with what is going on within me, inspirationally as well as directionally.**

feed me!! · felting · Holidays! · random revelations · sewing

Tis’ the Season

DSCN2637

The Christmas season is in full swing and it’s finally chilly outside! It’s been almost 80* around here. The person who wrote “Winter Wonderland” was definitely not from Texas.  I have been taking another unexpected blog break. I have been baking, decorating, and enjoying some Christmas crafts with the kids. I have managed to squeeze some sewing in here and there. Mainly gifts for friends and family. I am doing the best I can to make it a handmade Christmas. I’m about 75-25%. 25 being store bought. Hey, cut me some slack, I’ve got a 10 year old boy on my hands. I didn’t think sewing him a case for the X box would be very practical. If anyone has any suggestions, I would be more than happy to hear them. There’s always next year. These are a few of the maxi and mini patchfolios I have whipped up using Craft Apple’s patterns. Many more to go!

DSCN2638

I have just finished packing up my Holiday Tradition Swap box. And on the deadline, no less. I would like to say that last minute is not my style, but these days it seems to be the trend. It was such a fun swap. I sent candles, pajamas for her little one, hot cocoa, and my favorite Christmas cd from Banana Republic a few years back. I also sent some of these yummies, which has always been a family favorite from my Grandma.

DSCN2633

recipe

These were my handmade gift. Gift card holders. Hopefully, these will continue to be used and passed along. That’s why I didn’t want to make them very “Christmasy”. I used a very nifty felting tool that a friend gave me. I love it! It was so fast and easy to use and the possibilities are endless!

DSCN2629

random revelations · sewing · whichcraft?

On Mass Production

DSCN2425

I’ve been doing a little mass production of my own. These are the last of the hooded towels that I had planned to make for an upcoming craft show. But something in me says that I need more. I’m always in a shortage of boys’ things.  A friend called to tell me that Target now has hooded towels for $11. Geez! When I first started making these towels, they were not as widespread as they are now. The only store that I knew of was Neiman’s.  Now they are everywhere. And for chump change! I just cannot compete with these big stores, unless I just start giving stuff away. And believe me, I do my fair share of that already. But those mass produced products don’t have the same personality and quality that handcrafted items do. My style is sophisticated and chic and theirs is just generic baby style. If you can call it style. I find excitement in owning something that I know few people have. The hard part is that it is rare to find people who appreciate that and are willing to pay more for it. Being frugal myself, I totally understand that. But there just comes a time when we should support the people we care about instead of continuing to fill these people’s pockets just to save a couple of bucks. And by people we care about, I’m talking about local artisans who are just trying to put a piece of themselves out in this world and the stay-at-home moms who are putting their many talents to work.

random revelations

Now I know my ABC’s… or everything you never knew you wanted to know about me.

I’ve had to take an unexpected blog break and now I am rushing to get out of town. But before I go, I want to finish my meme. I know it’s just a bit long, but this is more for my own benefit. I set out to do this alphabet, and by George I’m gonna do it!

J- jalopy (ja lop’i) noun. a dilapidated, aged vehicle. Definitely what my body has been feeling like lately. I just turned 32, but my real age is probably much older. I have been having some back pain, which is very unusual for me(outside of labor…. which is definitely not the case!) I have always been a night owl, and my body is not agreeing with that anymore. I have never been one to consciously think about taking care of my body. I feel a new era coming on. Here’s to vitamins, early bedtimes, and bending my knees when I lift my toddler!

K- kitsch… what the heck is it and do I like it? I keep hearing this term being thrown around and still am not understanding the concept. I don’t know if it’s because so many people are using the term when it does not fit. I think it’s one of those hip terms at the moment and being over-utilized.

DSCN2074

DSCN2075

DSCN2076

L- letting go– Today is my son’s 1st day of 5th grade. To me, it seems like the bridge to so many new things. Independence, noticing girls, puberty. When did my little boy grow up so fast? I just need to realize his need to start being independent. I also need to let go of the idea of not having another baby. I know that 3 is good for us, but I think the thought of not having a baby running around is getting to me. What will that feel like? I’m sure I’ll enjoy it when the time comes, but for now, I just can’t imagine it.

M- Music has always been a part of my life. From trying to hit every note with Olivia Newton John’s Physical at age 6 to leaning on different hymns for reflection and understanding in my life now. I think it has shaped alot of who I am and the experiences I have been through. When I was growing up, you made friends by the type of music you listened to. I don’t know if that continues to happen because of the wide array of music available in the mainstream now. But I was into “new wave”, and that was kind of out there for my small Texas town at the time. I grew up too fast in the circle of friends I was in. From new wave came techno and raves, which gets you into clubbing at an early age, among other things. And I won’t bother to mention hairstyles and hair color! It was fun, but I know I will not be letting my kids follow in my footsteps.

N- Not Selling Out– I really enjoy having sewing as a creative outlet. I know I could sell more making certain popular items. Maybe with characters or themes that I am not into. I will just not give in to that. I will never create something that I myself would not use. That may not be the best business scenario, but if I am not enjoying what I am doing, then I’m just not going to do it. I hope to create things that I love and hopefully someone else will love it, too.

O- Object of my affection– That would be David. The greatest man that I have ever married. Well, the only one. But I didn’t always think that would be the case. I grew up thinking I would be married more than once. Product of a broken home, I guess. I never knew love until David. He has taught me so much about loving someone and being loved. Never have I known someone so giving and forgiving. He has shown me over and over that I deserve to be loved and what commitment really means. I am so grateful for him in my life. And every day uncovers new reasons why I love this man. If you’ve ever seen the movie Swept Away, you’d see what my fantasy is. Trapped on an island with him. It’s been quite a journey with him so far. Poor guy! He’s been through a lot with me. But he’s still here… and I know he always will be. To a lifetime of happiness!

P- Patchwork Life– My life has been like a beautiful patchwork quilt. Looking at each little piece may seem a little horrid or out of place. But when you stand back and look at everything as a whole, they all come together to tell a wondrous story. I’ve had a lot of experiences so far,good and bad. And I can’t really say that I regret any of it. I am so grateful to be able to learn from it all. Not only for my benefit, but for my children, as well.

Q- quart– the amount of fat that could be sucked out of one of my thighs during a liposuction session.

R- revel(rev’el)noun. to engage in riotous merrymaking; to take great delight in

S- Sew Much Fun!! I create, therefore I am. Idle hands are the devil’s plaything. Whatever the quote, the bottom line is that I love to make things. My earliest craft venture that I can remember was when I was about 7. We were living in the Philippines, and I wanted a fire during Christmas. Well, I don’t think I need to tell anyone that we didn’t have a fireplace in the Philippines. So I decided to make my own. I gathered cardboard, crayons, glue, and a knife to cut with. I did a bang up job, and have been creating ever since. I think I’ve used everything except oil paints. Love it all!

DSCN2079

T- Travel Diaper and Wipes Case– I have not been using a diaper bag for some time now, but my youngest is still in diapers. There is usually a few diapers along with a ziploc bag of wipes thrown into my already unorganized purse. This is great to pop into my bag or drop off at the nursery. This is my latest favorite fabric combo. Both are Amy Butler.

U- uncouth… the more I think about it, the more it fits. Embrace your inner dork.

V- vacillate… that’s me trying to decorate my house.

W- Wine,an art form in itself. I used to work at a winery and remember those times as some of the greatest of my life. I tried to start up a little wine and food pairing course, but it proved to be too much for me. I was cooking 4 courses for around 50 people and speaking. There was much more to it than I had thought. I had friends acting as my servers… they were just in it for the free food and booze. Running back and forth from the kitchen to the front of the house making sure everything was just right. Oh, it was a whirlwind but so much fun! I could have made a fortune, but only ended up doing it twice.

X- X-cavation, X-amine, X-cel…  This meme has made me reflect on where I have been and where I am going in my life.

Y- Yammer. ooooh. I think I do that a lot. Note to self. I gotta stop that.

Z- Zee you soon!! Sorry, I couldn’t do any better than that. I have 2 days to get this house in order and to pack for me and my daughter, Mia. We are off on our Alaskan adventure. Ready to set sail. Ready to yell “Mush!” on the dog sled. Ready to get out of this Texas heat. Can’t wait to go, but I’m already missing my husband and 2 other children. Be back soon!

feed me!! · random revelations

G, H, and I

I’ve already missed a couple of days of the Encyclopedia of Meme, so I thought that I would group a few together. I am really trying to challenge myself to finish this. So here are a few that I have missed.

aaron1

G- Get a job!! My son Aaron stayed at my sister-in-law’s for a few days. They run their own veterinary clinic and put that boy to work! He cleaned out cages, did the laundry, and assisted in a cesarean for a little pit bull. He rubbed the puppies with a warm cloth after they had been delivered. He was so proud of all that he did, but at the same time, decided that becoming a vet is not what is in his future. I think the sight of blood and other liquids was a complete shock to him. He did admit to being a little woozy. It was a great experience for him and he did enjoy himself.(And made $20!!) When not at the clinic, he was helping his Aunt with her twin 6 month old girls. He had his hands full! But I’ve never seen him so proud. Wow! 10 years old! He’s growing up too fast and the time is just whizzing by.

DSCN1927

H-Happy 34th Birthday, David! Friday was my husband’s birthday and we had a great time celebrating. We had a craft day and all of the kids made Daddy a card. I worked on this cute little banner. It says,”Happy B*Day David”.  I caught a lot of flack for not spelling out birthday. I told him he wasn’t worth the irth! Just kidding, of course. We had a couple of friends over and munched on appetizer type foods. It was a good night.

DSCN1934

I- Icing on the cake! Instead of a traditional cake, I made him a fruit pizza. I love making cakes, but I was a bit crunched for time. The fruit pizza is an old favorite from 9th grade home ech. The crust is sugar cookie dough. You roll it in a pizza pan and bake it like normal and let it cool. Then cream cheese gets a whipping with sugar and vanilla extract. Spread it on the cooled cookie. Top it with any kind of fruit, but my faves are strawberry, mandarin oranges, and kiwi. They just have the best color combos and look the prettiest. I usually put the cookie crust into a new pizza box before decorating. It looks great and is super, super easy! Great to bring to a school event or I just had a piece for breakfast! Yum!!

random revelations · sewing · whichcraft?

Tut Tut, Looks Like Rain

What a greatly needed day! It was a dark and rainy day today. But I love days like these at times.They are great snuggle up with your honey, stay in bed, do nothing days that everybody needs. I started my day by waking up at 11 this morning. My husband worked from home so he fed the kids breakfast and took my son to school. I live for his telecommutes. And on a Friday? Too good to be true. We are moving to Las Vegas in a few weeks for the summer. Only until our house is finished being built here. And he will be working from home EVERYDAY! I can’t wait. I stayed in my pj’s until 6 pm and spent the day with Joss Stone and my favorite green milk tea. I love hot tea!! When it comes to tea, I am all about equal opportunity. I think I have a tea for my every mood. And that’s a lot. But it was also a very productive day for me. In between lunch, Elmo’s world, and trips to the potty (I have a 2 year old), I managed to get a few blankets done. It’s usually a little frantic for me on Friday’s, because there is an outdoor market I have a booth at on Saturdays.

“Pure Origami”
blanket 4
A beautiful Asian inspired printed cotton with chocolate velour.

“Aqua Fern”

A bright classic botanical print with white minky dot fabric.

blanket 3

“Partridge in a Chocolate Tree”This blanket has so much cocoa in it that it will give you a toothache. A silky soft pink and chocolate printed cotton with chocolate velour.


blanket 2

“Seein’ Spots-Blue”A wonderfully cozy disco dot flannel with white minky dot fabric.

 

 

blanket 1

“Boho Bliss”True bohemian fashion. A funky floral fabric with ultra-plush crimson microfiber.

As much as I enjoyed this day, it is still scheduled to rain tomorrow. I did say that that was an outdoor market that I attend. Well, we can’t have it all. Who can be disappointed to news of getting to spend more time with your family? Tomorrow’s forecast is a bright and sunny day whatever the weather outside!! Enjoy your weekend. I’ll leave you with the best thing I’ve heard all day:  ” A mother’s lap is the best place from which to launch a life.” Isn’t that lovely? It makes all of the mundane so worthwhile.

Continue reading “Tut Tut, Looks Like Rain”