Hearts to Newtown

December 17, 2012

Friends, I'm just popping in for a minute today.  I have a few sewing and cooking projects I've been meaning to post about, but this is more important.  Like most of you, my heart has been breaking for the families in Newtown.  Hopefully unlike most of you, I have family in Newtown.  Mr. Carlee's oldest sister lives there with her husband and 5 kids.  Thankfully their three elementary aged children attend the other school, but several of their friends lost children on Friday.  I'm not eloquent enough to express how I feel about this terrible tragedy, but I wanted to share one small way that you can send a little bit of your love to this small New England town.  My sister-in-law's friend is working on a project for her town called Hearts to Newtown.
The idea is simple: spreading love, goodwill and cheer through the heart of a child. We are calling for elementary-aged children's art on paper hearts of all sizes, to be plastered all over Newtown, CT. Include child's first name, age and state. With these hearts, we hope to spread a tangible expression of the love felt by so many people, all sharing in grief for those suffering. Send your paper hearts to:

P.O. Box 754
Bethel, CT

My boys and I will be sending our hearts to Newtown along with our thoughts and prayers.  

Making Christmas Presents

December 8, 2012

This year, mostly in an attempt to save money, but also in an effort to limit commercialism, I decided that the gifts I gave my kids would be homemade.  I also limited myself to only using the supplies I had on hand.  No buying expensive fabric! 

Luckily, my kids are only 2 and 5, so their expectations for Christmas gifts are pretty low.  Santa will still be bringing non-homemade presents, or at least the kind he makes in his workshop (ahem Amazon.com).  I just finished the presents today, and thought that I'd share.

For my two year old, I made little placemats for the play kitchen.  She is always getting my fabric napkins, laying them out, and setting out an elaborate meal, so I thought that her own set of placemats were in order.


I cut up an existing piece of pre-quilted fabric intended to be bound into a baby quilt.  It had sweet little "blocks" just the right size for mini-placemats.  The fabric is a stiff polyester, I think salvaged from my mother-in-law's stash.  It was too stiff and scratchy to be used for wrapping a baby in, but perfect for making little placemats.  After cutting rectangles, I bound the edges in bias tape (my first attempt at machine sewn binding), and called it good.  I think my daughter is going to love these.
For my five year old, I made an apron.  I had made her one when she was two using this awesome pattern, but it is a bit small for her.  Besides, the little sister needs to wear an apron too.  Since I last made the apron, the pattern has been updated to give a size for 5 - 8 year olds.  Perfect!  I used pink fabric from my eternal source (see here and here), and embellished with some retro Strawberry Shortcake pieces.  I think this fabric originally came from our Grandmother, Mary Frances, but it came to me via Carlee.  I am also sure that the new apron will be well-loved too.
What about you?  Are you making anything for Christmas?  What will it be?  Do share!  I am thinking of making one more small thing for each, but haven't decided what yet.  Any suggestions?


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