Monday, April 30, 2012

Multi Generational Fun

There is something about trains that creates multi-generational fun for everyone!  :)

(for more pics check out picasa)

Monday, April 23, 2012

diaper bag, blood tests, and dirt

I passed my 3-hour glucose test today- woohoo!  :)  It was not pleasant not eating the entire morning, but after the sugar rush passed, I was just dealing with hunger and it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be.  My hubby even had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich ready for me when I came home after my last blood draw.  :)

This weekend was supposed to be the weekend that I finished my wonky star quilt.  And then I ran out of white thread.  boo!  This is one of the consequences of living here...the variety store closes at 6 on Saturday and doesn't open again until Monday morning.  So I made the most of the situation and made myself a diaper bag instead.  :)  I used this tutorial for the basic bag and to make the inside pockets.  I added the outside pocket on the front and the back.  Pretty easy and cost me a whole $4.56 for the elastic, binding tape, and interfacing (the fabric has been traveling with me since Kansas City).



inside (at the cleanest point of it's life)

Lastly, our garden has sprouted!  We have radishes, onions, and peas up so far.  We had cabbage and brussel sprouts seeded inside, but they got moldy while we were on vacation, so we need to get those replanted.  This week we will also get the rest of our seeds planted (inside) and the garden good and watered with the 90 degree weather tomorrow...crazy!

Friday, April 20, 2012

30 weeks

Goodbye twenties...hello 30 week!  This can only mean one thing...

The glucose test (that and I have a lot of things to get done and my time is getting shorter).  The one appointment that I dreaded coming into the pregnancy, even ahead of the 12-week blood draw.  The first pregnancy you just hear rumors of the "sweet stuff" and are blissfully unaware of the torture about to ensue.  Choking down super sweet, non-carbonated orange drink, waiting for an hour while floating on a sugar high, getting blood drawn, and then the sugar-rush crash that follows.

Can you tell that I was excited for today's appointment?  :)

On top of it, Jared has been out of town the last couple of days for the district convention and I was going to have a 16 month old by myself to boot.  He actually did really well and entertained the waiting room of grandmas and grandpas while I had to wait (thank goodness for audiences!).  :)  Unfortunately, I failed the test.  They recently changed the rules so that instead of your blood sugar level being under 140, it needs to be under 130.  My score: 134.  Arg!  Traveling and eating healthy do not go well together for me...I think the white, refined flour hamburger buns two days ago did me in.  Oh well - I go back Monday for the 3 hour version.  Luckily, Jared is coming back tomorrow.  YAY!  He can watch Timothy for the initial blood draw and the gagging down of the sweet stuff.  After that, Timothy and I can walk back to the clinic every hour for the rest of my draws.  Oh yeah, did I mention that we live half a block from our doctor's office.  Living here has benefits too.  :)

Other than the blood test, the baby looks good, but I am measuring large, just like Timothy.  The doctor also said I feel "squishy"- meaning she thinks that I am carrying extra fluid.  (squishy - what every pregnant woman really wants to hear)  Translation:  we also get another ultrasound next week and it will be at the hospital here in town!  Because I did this with Timothy, the doctor isn't concerned, but wants to make sure everything looks good and her kidneys are functioning properly.  So hopefully good news will be coming next week...until then, no hamburgers in the Nies household this weekend.

hourglass quilt top

Talk about needing sunglasses!  This photo was taken at 7:30 pm in my backyard when the majority of daylight was done.

This is one happy quilt.

And I love it!  :)

It is going with me to quilters' guild on Tuesday night to be a part of the "show and tell" and then to the quilt shop here in town.  I just want a solid back and I know she carries 90" width fabrics for backing, so I am keeping my fingers crossed that she has something that will work.  It will get a 100% cotton batting and a medium weight "scribble" all over before coming back to me for the binding.  But that won't be for awhile...she has a 3 month waiting list (!).  Maybe one day I'll get myself a darning foot for my sewing machine and learn how to free motion quilt.  But not now.  Or in the next 4 months I am thinking either.  :)

Goodbye for now - I am hoping to see you before the end of the summer so we can picnic on you before the snow flies!

Other sewing news:  finished 8 more "I Spy" bags...ready to be filled, stitched closed, and played with! These are heading out to Spearfish to be passed around a toddler busy bag exchange...more on that later...

one cool dude

Too bad he doesn't realize how cool he looks in his new shades.  :)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Vacation Projects Revisited

Well, I had better show what I worked on.  I promise that I didn't sleep or play on my kindle that much while we were in the car.  :)  It was a little tricky to stitch, however, when I needed to put my feet up because they were belly really got in the way!

1.  Baby quilt - done!  I finished the binding on Sunday, day one of the trip.  Hooray!  It got washed and dried at my parents' house, so it is ready to go for baby.

2.  Knitted baby blanket - done!  I worked on this in the evenings at my grandma's house after putting Timothy to bed.  I also worked on it a lot on day 1 of the return trip and finished it at the hotel.  I still need to tuck in a couple of knots and then wash/stretch it, but hopefully that will happen later this week.

3.  Quiet book - I got some handstitching done, but it proved to be really difficult to work on in the car.  Jared is out of town for the rest of the week for the district convention in Sioux Falls, so I am putting this on the priority list for the next couple of evenings.  I was able to sketch some things out and cut felt pieces at my parents' table, so now it just needs to be put together.

4.  Dishrags - I didn't start on any until yesterday, but I finished one and started another.  Completing the second is going to happen as soon as I finish this post and will take about 20 minutes.  Then I need to tackle the dishes before diving into the next project.  Sigh.

Trip to Michigan

We made it to Michigan and back all in one piece!  What a great trip - we spent lots of time with family and friends, didn't run into any bad weather, introduced Jared to Frankenmuth, celebrated with Amy and Brian with a baby shower, and had safe travels.  Here are some highlights:

 playing with grandma, grandpa, and the dogs


Amy and I at her shower - somehow I way bigger but 2 weeks behind her...

Best purchase:  the dvd player for the van.  We swore several months ago that we would never buy one for our vehicle, but when faced with almost 2 days in the car both ways with a small child, we crumbled in fear.  It ended up being a lifesaver - we only used it when it was the end of the day and we really needed to put in another hour on the road and Timothy had had enough.  We listened through the baby signing videos several times, but it was much better than the alternative of Timothy whining.  Next time we go to Michigan, we will have 2 small passengers in carseats, not just one...crazy to think about!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The vacation projects

The thought behind this post is that I'll be motivated to work on the projects I am taking with me on our trip so I can update my progress when we get back.  :)  We'll see if I don't sleep/play games on my kindle the entire trip...

1. Bug Quilt.  I made this when I found out that I was pregnant with Timothy.  I had the back yarn tied on, the binding sewn on the front, and half of the hand stitching on the back of the binding done.  And then we moved to St. Louis.  And then I found out that I was having a boy.  And that was that.  

Well, fast forward to 2 weeks ago when I was going through my baby box in the basement and I pulled it out.  This pregnancy is a girl.  And I now know how to machine quilt.  And I realized that I did a bad job on the binding.  So, I pulled the binding off a few nights ago, cut all of the yarn ties out, put a new back on it (it was a really stretchy fleece), quilted it, and reattached the binding (correctly this time).  

My goal is to finish sewing the binding on the back in the car and then it will be done.  For real this time.   :)

2. Knit a blanket.  Remember that teal blanket I started for the baby after Christmas?  Yep, I burned out on it and it is still halfway done.  I am hoping to finish it on this trip.  Which means I need to print the directions out again because I forgot the pattern...

3. Hand stitch a quiet book.  I was hoping to get all of the fabric elements sewn on before the trip so all I would have is the hand stitching to do, and then I could come home and just sew it together.  HA!  I do have a few pages done, so I am hoping to get the embroidery done on those and the front cover at least...

4. Knit dishrags.  Because you always could use a couple more and they make great gifts when paired with other kitchen supplies...

Can I accomplish all of this?  Of course!  Will I?  Time will only tell...your prayers for my husband's patience would be appreciated.  :)

Easter Festivities

With vacation right around the corner (as in, we are leaving after church services are done on Sunday), we had our Easter festivities today.  We started with dying Easter eggs.  Timothy was very interested in the whole dying process until he couldn't take the eggs out of the dye right away and had a major meltdown...patience my child does not have.  So, while Timothy found himself in his crib (we were hoping for a nap that didn't happen), Jared and I finished the eggs and got ourselves ready for the next adventure...

telling daddy how to mix the dyes.  :)

testing out the eggs...and cracking through the shell with the new teeth.  

Baby animal day at the 4-H building!  What a nice event!  We got to see a miniature horse, calves, lambs, kids, geese, piglets, chickens, bunnies, chicks, and duckies, all available to pet with the help of older kids in the 4-H program.  There was also butter churning, horse wagon rides, and a kid-sized train running outside.  I think next year will be much more interesting for Timothy; he was too afraid to actually touch any of the animals, but he did baaa at the lambs and moo at the calves.  :)  Next year, when Timothy is walking and aware of what is going on a little more, we will plan on the town egg scramble too.

Tomorrow, he'll get his Easter basket and we will all head to church for early service, breakfast, and then finish packing at home (while Jared does the 2nd service) for our journey to Michigan!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

getting ready for the car ride

I am starting to stress about the car ride to Michigan.  Almost 2 whole days with a child stuck in his car seat.  For the record, my parents took one and a half days, but with a 16-month-old and a 28-week-pregnant momma, I am anticipating many more stops.  Sounds like a nice, relaxing trip for my hubby, don't you think?  :)

We are stocking my husband's ipod with childrens' music (yay for being a elementary music teacher!), purchasing a personal dvd player for the meltdown times, and packing lots of fine motor toys and activities.  That goes for me too...I'll probably end up doing only half of the projects I am packing for myself.  Anyway, I made this I-Spy bag for Timothy tonight:

Lots of different little things to find in a storm of rice.  I have seen a lot of these online lately, but just this morning I found this post and she answered a lot of my questions.  The tissue paper trick was a lifesaver!  My sister-in-law is also hosting a toddler busy bag swap and this is going to be part of my contribution.  I made this one up quick to test it out on our trip.  We'll see how it survives being thrown in the van.  :)

No gardening little sweet pea didn't take an afternoon nap (after last week taking several 3 hour naps, I don't understand), but hopefully tomorrow I will get the rest of my cool weather crops in the ground.  I am also hoping to pull together a few more activities for Timothy.  Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

first (veggie) gardening post, 2012

I am so excited to get our garden started for the year! The weather has been unusually warm, making me want to rush out in the dirt and put things in the ground. I have been patient (sitting on my hands) and waiting until I heard about the seasoned gardeners in the area putting things in. They have started (radishes are up in the neighborhood) and so have I!

First, the plan. My mother-in-law and I ordered seeds together (because who is going to plant all 100 pea seeds in the packet??) over superbowl weekend. Then they sat here for awhile. I flipped through them occasionally. :) Today, I took Timothy to see the chicks at the farm and fleet store in town (so cute...he was VERY interested and meowed at them) and I picked up my onions, garlic, rhubarb, and 2 varieties of asparagus. Score!

I have my plan ready...

And I made my row markers (an idea I saw on pinterest).

corks and skewers = row markers

This afternoon, during Timothy's nap, I planted my 2 varieties of asparagus (martha washingtons and jersey hybrids) and 3 rhubarb crowns. :) Either later today or tomorrow (because I am taking it easy, I promise) the onions, garlic, radishes, and peas will go in. If, and more likely when, we get a frost, these should be fine. When we get back from Michigan in a couple of weeks I will get all of our other seeds going inside so they will be ready to go in the ground at the end of May.

Keeping my fingers crossed that we don't lose half of our garden to a virus like last year...

Monday, April 2, 2012

The easter bunny came early

and apparently dresses like a lumberjack.

He also likes to eat his own products.

And has a thing for shoes. :)