Wednesday, February 27, 2013

it's called a 'whitehouse'

I promised Soren quite a while ago that I make him a floor cushion for his room. He is a big Spiderman fan right now and Oma made him a Spiderman quilt during her visit in our house.So I decided to use the leftover fabrics and a touch of yellow for his floor cushion. After I only made pillows lately I thought of switching up the style for this and turn in more into a cuboid shape. - cuboid -  I admit that I had to google for this word in English. - Soren is happy with his cushion and tested it right away, but it is intended for indoors otherwise the Brynne, our dog will take it over without thinking twice. Vincenzo, the cat, already spent last night sleeping on it right after finishing it.

We started our gardening season here, too. Perhaps a little late for our region, because our seedlings could already be growing, however the first seeds were planted yesterday in the mini greenhouse. But we don't really have much space and light for plants inside close to the window, we built our greenhouse for outside today. It is big enough to raise all seedlings even after we planted them in bigger pots before planting them actually in the ground. It is not your typical greenhouse, but I am definitely no carpenter and my budget si limited, too. So I spent $3 for some plastic foil, dug out the postal tape that works for everything and the extra storage shelf behind the shed that was just waiting to get used for something.

 - Gardening - Day 1 -

 - Gardening - Day 2 -

Even if our greenhouse or whitehouse as Bella insists calling it does not look very professional, it should work out for us of not Texas storm is blowing it all over the yard. There is a weight on the bottom of the flap included to keep the flap down and roll it up for opening and we even added velcro for extra closure on the sides. Postal tape works awesome, when it sticks once you usually don't have a chance to get it back off.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

and pillow #3 - part 3

The last of the pillows for the couch corner is finished and I still have some of the fabrics left I used for the series, but I should perhaps switch it up for the next project. I chose not to use straight lines crazy all over to quilt this pillow, but went in circles all around. It is definitely time consuming and I like the result even I did not a perfect job with it. I need a lot more practice. I would love to use circle quilting patterns on one of bigger quilt tops, however I question my ability to turn it 360 degrees again and again under my machine and freehand quilting would be my only other option.

Monday, February 25, 2013

trip to the airport

On Saturday it was time to pack up again, however our trip over country roads was short, passing several cows, not even a traffic light to stop until we already arrived at the airport around the corner. With lots of helpers fighting over the my mom's luggage eventually all made it to the American Eagle check-in counter.

The passenger behind us in line at the counter was cute, the kid's opinion about the Chihuahua in the travel carrier, but when he got all loud and upset because they looked at him then I wasn't so sure anymore. :)

Soren was being extremely silly and a little grumpy as always when we are at the airport picking somebody up or dropping off. When he gets to travel himself he is usually in a happy mood, but it's not his turn this time.

We took some last pictures with Oma and the kids and even Soren cooperated after his tummy was filled with plenty of animal crackers which needed to be lined up in a specific patter before they were edible.

That's as far as we could accompany Oma and it was time to say goodbye. 

By now Oma arrived safely back in Germany, tired and exhausted and with a stack of more silly memories of her crazy grandkids and pets.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Impressions of the QuiltCon 2013 - Austin, TX

Hello Austin.

On Thursday, two days before my mom flew back to Germany just the two of us made a road trip into Austin to visit the QuiltCon 2013 organized by the Modern Quilting Guild. We thoroughly enjoyed our time there. We saw many awesome quilts, shop hopped through many quilt shop booth, received charm packs as samples, won a Welcome package from Spoonflower which will be mailed to, tried out freehand quilting on a top of the line machine - I am still in awe - and got lots of inspiration and even  more motivation to start sewing right then and there. 

Saturday, February 23, 2013

road trip north to glen rose, tx

Last weekend we were busy with skating on Friday night, hiking dripping springs on Saturday morning, so on Sunday we used the sunny weather for a trip north to Dinosaurworld in Glen Rose. Soren was already super excited since Friday evening when I picked the tickets up at the ITR office on post (the military discount made quite a difference for five people).

Dinosaurworld - or just Dinoland for us - is about 1 1/2 hours from us driving through the country passing chocolate heaven a few miles outside of Glen Rose. You can hardly miss the entrance with huge dinosaurs and tiny giraffes at the entrance. With us on this trip was a happy little dog, because Dinoland does allow friendly dogs, and Brynne was well behaved compared to the crazy little poodle who didn't want to stay away from her.

The kids started our visit at the Fossil Dig and all three were only interested in digging up shark teeth even they were plenty of other fossils and founds. Then all four (3 kids plus dog) were ready for the dino trail to see 100+ life size dinosaurs.

Of course, now, on every outing even the littlest one brings his camera along for exploring and snapping pictures. My little photographer.

It's not only fun to check out the dinos from the outside, but also from the inside. It was hard to get Chiara and Soren back out of it. 

Dinoland also offers plenty of shady picnic tables outside the museum or around the playground perfect for kids in Soren's and Chiara's ages. Soren did not really want to leave this place.

Goodbye Dinoland.

Glen Rose has a historic downtown and we - the adults - wanted to take a look after the kids had their fun. However we changed our mind when we reached Big Rocks Park located on the Paluxy River on the side of downtown. 

Who could resist to climb and lounge on those big round rocks or were not tempting to stick his feet in the water. We always end up somewhere at the water with the kids, it's impossible for my kids to stay away from it on any outing even if we don't plan to get even close to any water source.

I had a chance to take more pictures of Chiara while Soren and Bella were disappeared between all these rocks and hardly wanted to get back down.

My mom is probably used weird outings with us by now and enjoyed the beautiful day in February while everybody back home was freezing and had to deal with snow and ice. :)

The crossing over the Paluxy River is neat and leads to a beautiful walkway along  the river on the other side with plenty of ducks waiting to be fed.

Soren would have loved to keep going further and further, Brynne, too, but the girls were tired out, especially Chiara hardly wanted to take another step and we had two knocked out kids on the way back.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

the hedgehog is just plain cute - part 2

 I am hooked on the bright color scheme. I truly admit it and it's fun to have all these fabric spread around you, a sketch of an idea in front of me, but not knowing yet how the result will turn out exactly because I do not plan the colors into details and just get started. However this pillow fits perfectly to the strip pillow I finally finish a week ago and there might be one more coming soon. There is a little bot more space left on the couch stool in the corner of our living room. The next sketch is already waiting scribbled inside of a flattened flat rate box. I will see what will be finished first the new pillow idea or the two big quilts that finally are layered, basted and ready for quilting.

After an hour on hold with Adobe without getting anybody on the line and then after an one minute wait I was chatting online with Amit from Adobe, I learned not to call Adobe customer service anymore and also got my license issue solved for the Photoshop program and was finally able to use it again.

The next day I spent preparing a sheet with different labels for my mom and some new ones for myself and printed it on iron-on paper. Already set up with big rolls of cotton tape we were busy ironing on the design on the tape. - I ordered 20 yards rolls of cotton tape online two years ago already, because I had no luck finding them in the small packages in the stores around me. - It takes a little bit of time, but the labels are so easy to make in any size and type needed for any project and I am all set for now.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

road trip south to dripping springs

All our outdoor plans for last weekend literally fell in the water with thunderstorms all weekend long, so we stayed home. We didn't mind and were busy sewing and some of us just plain lazy.

This is the last weekend with my mom before she leaves next Saturday again and we used every single minute until our feet are so tired now. Friday evening we took the kids out Skating on base and the little ones had lots of fun, Bella on the others side was a playing scary cat. I expected that from Soren and not from my oldest, however he did great for just being the second time on roller skates and was a tough cookie. Chiara is the one who ended up with the bruises for kissing the floor several times.

Saturday morning we packed up enough food for the day and all of us wore sneakers for a trip to Dripping Springs. This was our second time visiting Hamilton Pool, a Travis County natural preserve. Last time we brought our swimsuits, towels and floaties for a dip in the natural pool, this time we planned on exploring the hiking trail to the Pedernales River after stopping at the pool first.

The first part down to the valley is very rocky and quiet steep and even in summer you leave your flip flops in the car and wear good footwear. The hike to the pool is absolutely worth it no matter what season you go. Photos from our last trip in early summer.

The kids love this place as much as I do and are already asking to go back there again. 

We followed the trail back to the intersection to check out the opposite way to the river and were not the only ones enjoying the beautiful weather with 60 degrees. We made it all the way over rocks, roots, branches, had a picnic at the shore of the river and hiked the mile back. Soren and me were the end of the tail and of course he tripped and fell down. Immediately he explained, "I did not break my leg!" , but then the crying started. He scraped himself just a little, but a band-aid was needed to make him feel better. He made it to the car on his own feet and luckily not on my back.

Last time after the park we just drove with Karin into the town of Dripping Springs and by luck discovered the Valli & Kim's quilt shop. What a pleasant surprise. So this time it was already planned in to show my mom this awesome quilt shop.

The display from the store is as much fun to check out as all the fabric with a wide variety of fabrics and it's hard to decide where to look first when you first step through the wide doors.

Lots of beautiful quilts are displayed hanging down from the ceiling.

Pillows, pillows, everywhere you look.

Isn't this an awesome idea to use fabric for decoupage this old desk? 

Soren was so tired after all the walking, but he still managed to bug the saleslady with lots of questions about the thread, fabric and quilts.
It is so hard not trying to buy the whole store up and just leaving with a few treasures, but hopefully we will be sometime in Dripping Springs again and definitely stop there, too.


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