{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real} Girls in white dresses


Wow, this month has sped by! I think I say that about this time every month.  But then I’m running on three hours’ sleep so please bear with me, please. 🙂10959348_1561876947393265_3389925203748655840_n


Someone had the final fitting for her First Communion dress a couple of weeks ago.  My mother-in-law made it from this vintage pattern that I found on Etsy.  As she poured her love and efforts into this dress, I dared not ask for new handmade Easter dresses this year, but that was fine because the big girls still fit in the ones she made them last year. 🙂  She did a fabulous job, and on a gorgeous April day had our Princess over for her last fitting and pictures.

Both Princess and Dino make their First Communion this coming Sunday.  What a grace for our family!

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I remember when I was expecting her, I had a dream about a First Communion class, and my daughter was in it (although I couldn’t see her face).  She was walking in a line with other girls and she had long light hair.  The rest of the details of the dream were irrelevant:  We don’t attend a parish church in Michigan, and Fr. Mastroeni from our days at Christendom is not our parish priest. 😉







Princess is thrilled with her lovely dress, to say the least.  I had intended her to wear my bridal veil, which wasn’t long, and was attached to a comb so she could wear whatever headpiece she liked with it.  However, when the time came to get it out…. I couldn’t find my veil.  Gulp.  I’m praying it wasn’t lost in the move.  But the veil she is wearing was worn by her aunts at their First Communion and also her older cousin.  The headpiece was the flower girl wreath from my wedding, again worn by one of her aunts. 🙂



Getting ready for the First Communion party was the best excuse to finally tackle the backyard landscaping project.  That’s what we’ve been up to this week besides work and school.


Yummy dinner, happy kids.  And a stormtrooper.



Posey came into the boys’ room one evening and decided it was time for her to go to school…. in my chapel veil.

Real Funny


{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}

Triple-Play today!

 +  + FossMeme

Am I on a roll? Here’s how they tie in.

Pretty + Happy

Easter Dresses! I know I wrote some months ago about my ambitious plans for three Easter dresses. You may also note that I kept mum on the subject after that. Partly this was because my mother-in-law volunteered to make two of the dresses for me, and I knew I wouldn’t see them until Holy Saturday. My mother-in-law is a master seamstress and I knew she’d make a thing of beauty. So I bought the Oliver + S Fairytale Dress pattern but I did not get the fabric indicated in a previous post. Shortly after I made that post came the iPhone mishap and subsequent replacement, causing a sticker-shock. 😉 So I opened my fabric cabinet and found that I had enough fabric in there for the dresses already! It came from my Grandma’s stash, so that was sweet for me since she’s the one who always made my Easter dresses, and then my mother-in-law had enough extra material from her mother’s stash to line Princess’ dress. Thus both Princess and Sunshine had dresses that reminded us of other seamstresses in our lives. 🙂

Here Princess models her Easter dress, made from a Michael Miller tea party design circa 2000. Cardigan by Target. Note the Princess-perfect pink sparkle shoes.

Here Princess models her Easter dress, made from a Michael Miller tea party design circa 2000. Cardigan by Target. Note the Princess-perfect pink sparkle shoes.


Sunshine looks darling in a Dick-and-Jane dress. Cardigan by Target. Mud-Puddle Proof Shoes are a must with this one.

Sunshine looks darling in a Dick-and-Jane dress. Cardigan by Target. Mud-Puddle Proof Shoes are a must with this one.

A closer look at the sweet sleeves on this dress. Oh, and thanks to the person who commented on this blog that Papo princesses work great in the M&D castle. The girls' Easter basket was gifted accordingly.

A closer look at the sweet sleeves on this dress. Oh, and thanks to the person who commented on this blog that Papo princesses work great in the M&D castle. The girls’ Easter basket was gifted accordingly.


And here’s where I come in. I did get my sewing machine out, and I did create a dress for Miss M. I used Carina Gardner’s Playdate Dress pattern, and I did get a yard of Oliver + S fabric because it was on sale and I was nuts over the buttons on the fabric! Miss M didn’t quite allow me to get a good shot of her in it–she’s always on the go these days–and as I characteristically was up until nearly 1am Holy Saturday night finishing this dress, there are a few cheats in it (the zipper instead of buttons in the back, for one). But it was oh so nice to sew again!



Another bit of sewing I did rather hastily this week was to create the First Communion banner for Rascal. I edited out the iron-on letters on the left side of the banner, mainly because if I’ve been referring to him by nickname for 4 years on this blog, I’m not going to blow it by publishing his real name in the picture. The story behind this is one of the wryly humorous ones we’ll remember for a while. I wanted to stash-bust while making this and so when the instructions called for a white background I thought of the 20 yards of white nylon we’ve had sitting around since it was a non-returnable purchase and it wasn’t what we needed for a prior project some years ago. So I used a little of it and now does anyone want 19 yards of white nylon? I’d really rather not sew it again. 😉 I was up late sewing this also because we couldn’t remember the deadline for the banners and were afraid we’d already missed it! Turns out when Rascal went to CCD last night, he was the first in his class to turn a banner in! I want my sleep back now. 🙂 Seriously though, I was glad to get this done. 😉

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And for the Yarn Along…the finished Easter Eggs! We dyed them in Kool-Aid on Holy Saturday, and Rascal stuffed them and hung them on our porch wreath on Easter Sunday.



The Lamb Cake was not a success this year. At least not as a perfectly 3-dimensional lamb with perfectly boiled icing.



Baby-lovin’ still going strong. Siblings vie for sister’s attention. Sister isn’t sure what to think of it all still! She just knows she’s loved. 🙂

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Week Recap

The week ahead promises to be chock-full of its own amazing news so I want to put up some pictures before things start rolling around here. We’ve been thrown off as usual by the “spring forward” of Daylight Savings Time (my annual groan) and with Posy Pea’s arrival imminent we decided to take Spring Break this week instead of next. This morning we had the unprecedented experience of two night owls as Miss M and Sunshine decided to be bright eyed and bushy tailed from 3am-present (well, except for Miss M, who crashed around 6:45), and as I struggle to keep the eyes open I realize our Spring Break decision was probably amongst the wisest academic decisions I made this year. 😉

So without further eloquence…


My foyer shelf, all decked out for March and April. Gardening ….


…and Spring Cleaning are on the mind.


Getting out on the “last” cold weekend before Easter (the previous weekend).  Haus Meister took the big kids back to the lake for another nature walk (and yes they did return with another driftwood piece).


Two boys lost a tooth this week, one of them for the very first time!


An aunt and cousins came to visit and stay with us for a few weeks while we wait for Posy Pea and welcome her home! The children are loving the captive audience of their 5month old littlest cousin.


Reading assignments are less of a chore with such a smiling face next to you!


The oven fix mentioned a few posts ago worked for the door for all of three uses (not Haus Meister’s fault), but the error code soon returned and was replaced by another, indicating that we’d need to replace the entire control panel for the oven. As the door was still crooked, the temperature sensor still faulty, and now that, we decided just to replace the oven. What joy! What rapture!


Over the past weekend the weather warmed up, and so what did the corgyn do? They decided to stay glued to an inside wall. I question their intelligence.

When Miss M and Sunshine, in complete juxtaposition to their actions this morning, granted me a free hour on Friday afternoon by napping after school–both of them, at the same time–I decided to bring out my sewing machine. Almost eighteen months ago I packed up the machine because it kept tangling the thread on me as I tried to make some homemade gift bags during an Advent season. I had a pile of mending to do and figured I would at least see if I needed the machine serviced. To my surprise, the machine behaved itself and I was able to knock several mending projects off my to-do list. What a relief–I love to sew, but mending is my bane. How ironic is that? I also found a pair of cotton nightgowns at the bottom of my mending pile that needed to be scrapped. I upcycled the lower parts of them into petticoats/slips for my daughter and niece.


The girls were quite excited and wore the petticoats over their skirts the rest of the day.


With the balmy Spring air coming in from the deck door, the sunshine softly lighting the room, the recliner beckoning for impatient children to rest in while I “sew them up something,” and the corgi chewing on something or other down there, I become more and more convinced that I appropriated the best room in the house for my sewing nook. It’s not going to turn into a dining room again anytime soon.

Here’s the plan for now…

Thursday found me lamenting the fact that it wasn’t snowing. Nor did it look like snow was going to come at all.  The previous weekend found me grumbling that the temperatures were in the low 70s, mainly because everything seemed humid and damp and knowing another cool spell was coming later in the week made me mistrust the weather. All I could think of was that someone was going to catch some bug from it.  I still wanted a nice cold winter.

So I spent part of this weekend planning for Easter.

I’m a little crazy like that sometimes.

Okay, most of the time.

Part of it came from Elizabeth’s latest Needle and ThREAD post wherein she gave us a peek into her adorable sewing stash. She’s planning to make an Easter dress pattern that I too, happened to have my eye on. Upon deliberation and consultation with Princess, who continues to be our resident arbiter elegantiae and clothes horse,  we decided that this pattern would be The One.


It has a collar. I’m slightly intimidated by the collar. However, it’s also a challenge for me, and meeting a craft challenge can be fun… or at least interesting. If you are curious, this is the Oliver and S Fairytale dress pattern. I’m smitten with Oliver and S designs, partly because they are just plain cute and partly because of the picture on the pattern cover.


They always make it look like an old fashioned paper doll. I’m nuts for that!

I hope to see if my sewing machine is back in order soon. I’m appalled that I haven’t touched it in a year. I guess it’s because knitting is easier for me to pick up in a quiet moment, but there’s a limited time one can wear handknitted clothes around here, and somehow I think it would be faster to sew this up than to handknit three summer sweater dresses in cotton/linen yarn. 😉

Once the pattern was established, I had to pick out fabric, of course!  I found this one for Sunshine (pattern is from Ladies’ Stitching Club by Oliver & S):


and this one for Princess and Miss M, who have the same coloring about them. 🙂 It’s Michael Miller Strawberry Tea Party in Pink. Princess insisted that her dress be pink, naturally!


The amusing thing is that as soon as I determined upon these very Springy things, I went downstairs and noticed that I still haven’t packed away my Santa corner!  That would be a top corner of a bookcase whereupon resides the Cookies for Santa plate and mug, a Hallmark woodland Santa candleholder I’ve had almost as long as we’ve been married, and a German wooden Santa that burns an incense cone. For that matter, I just today took down all our Christmas cards. They lovingly filled up a goodly portion of our foyer and filled the area with cheer. But it was time. Princess and I took them all down and put them in a basket. I got this idea from my mother-in-law–in their house they take a card out of the basket at every mealtime and say a prayer for the sender. We began ours tonight, and it’s just as fun as receiving the card the first time.

Meanwhile Haus Meister surveys the bare walls. HIM: “It looks so empty in the foyer right now. Wow.”

ME: (gaily) “Oh, don’t worry. The Valentines will be going up soon enough.”

HIM: (sarcastically) “What? Oh…joy. Valentine cards. How about we just put all those Christmas cards back up again?”

No thanks. I need to conserve my Scotch tape. 🙂

And last but not least, happy birthday today to my Mom!

{pretty, happy, funny, real}

 Another week speeds by! Health is generally improved around here, and we’ve managed to get back into a bit of routine.


Fabric!! I guess this also could go under “happy” but here it is. It’s for Princess, and the pattern I want to use for it is in the mail. Huzzah! This is from the new “Out to Sea” by SarahJane for Michael Miller fabrics (don’t I sound like an experienced crafter saying that?), and it is the first time ever I’ve bought a fabric the day it debuted. But unless Sarah Jane designs a princess with that cute redhead as model, there hasn’t been a more absolutely meant-for-my-Princess fabric in the four years I’ve sewed for her.


This little charmer

is 7 today! Happy Birthday Rascal!

You keep us all laughing and smiling. Your ideas about life and how things work are intriguing and shows more and more that you have your Daddy’s engineering mind. We are so proud of our big guy.

And remember to keep those LEGOs away from your ever inquisitive audience… 🙂


It’s tough being a corgi. So tough.


“Help! I’ve climbed and I can’t get down!”

It happens nearly every time someone leaves the main bathroom door open. Such a curious little climber. She stands there and shouts until someone comes to her aid.

Pondering Projects

In my e-mailbox today comes an ad for a Fall (!) line of home decor that included a duvet cover with Princess’ name all over it.

Well, not really, of course…

The more ruffles the better, is our Princess’ motto. Mind you, she’s still the self appointed resident arbiter elegantiae who tried to persuade me to buy myself pink pants instead of khaki capris. Anyway, after looking at this a moment, the thought struck me: Could I make this?

The answer is yes. I could. Anyone who can hem and gather could feasibly create something like this. There’s a number of other questions that follow, though.

Could I sew a cover like this? If yes, then:

  1. Would I be sick and tired of making tiered ruffles when it was done?
  2. Would I be so sick and tired of making tiered ruffles that I would never make the tiered and ruffled dresses for which I have patterns?
  3. Would the cost of the material to make this exceed the $160 price tag of the premade item?
  4. Would she be so appreciative of my work that she keeps this thing on her bed for years–yea, even unto packing it for her college dorm?
If the answer to 1-3 is ‘yes’ and 4 is ‘no,’ proceed to sewing cabinet and look at patterns for which you already have the material. Now go ye and sew.
If the original answer to the question is ‘no,’ the above suggestion also applies.