Wednesday, 24 February 2010

more reading...

Minnie cannot actually read yet. But she does love looking through her novels at the little illustrations. And perhaps at the words and the letters and the beauty of a typed page.

We are now reading 'James and the Giant Peach' and 'The BFG,' which Minnie assures us is not too scary. We have finished 'Charlotte's Web' (at which I cried hysterically at the end) and 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.' Minnie concluded that Mr Willy Wonka would have loved a son like Charlie - I think she is right.

Minnie's collection of novels was given a major boost by my excited buying from The Book Depository. With no shipping costs and discounted books prices, it really is addictive. I think I tell Steve every day how much I love The Book Depository. Yes, I know that would be better to always buy locally and we most defiantly still do. But I cannot justify spending double the price at the local bookstore for every book purchase we make.

In the pile for reading we now have;

I love both reading aloud and having the opportunity to re-read all my childhood favourites. Minnie has decided that she will read these 'grown up books' to the baby when it is born. What a lovely big sister this new baby has.

baby: nappies and a little sewing...

I have to say again, what an amazing response I had to my questions about washable nappies! Thank you again so much for all your information and links. And this blogging world continues to amaze me. You see I received a lovely email from a mama saying I could have their nappies. A day or so later, a parcel arrived containing 5 wonderful nappies. I got terribly emotional, both over the kindness shown by a 'stranger' and by the thought of the little person that would be in them in a less than 9 weeks. So thank you Robyn, you are a nappy goddess! I have decided that I am going to buy a small selection in a few different brands to give them a go. Well, someone small and sweet will be giving them the work out...

And I have been doing a little sewing for the baby. Actually if I am being honest, I went through a little patch a couple of weeks back where I seemed to be obsessed with sewing pants. Pants, pants, pants. My husband asked if perhaps I had gone a little overboard! But of course I explained, you can never have enough pants, can you?

So here is a small sample of what I have been working on. Almost all these pants have been made from up-cycled tee-shirts and are very basic. I have made couple from, corduroy and used some lovely printed stretch fabric from Sprout Design (the red, white and blue fish and the green, blue and white elephants). And most of them do need finishing off - I am terrible at rushing on to the next thing while leaving the first unfinished. I am still looking for good, thick organic jersey, so let me know if you have a good source.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

baby: 29 and a half...

Just another shot of this growing tummy. I do love having a big, round belly. Heading towards 30 weeks. On the downhill run now...

And congrats to Kylie (who won my recent giveaway) who I hear has just given birth to a gorgeous little baby named Solomon. There really is nothing sweeter than a new baby.

Monday, 15 February 2010

my little Snow White...

For months leading up to Christmas Minnie declared that she really, really wanted a Snow White doll and a Snow White dress. She asked all the shopping centre Santa's and left instructions in her Christmas Eve note to Santa. If she was asked what she was getting, she always replied 'a Snow White dress and a Snow White doll.'

I contemplated buying a ready made dress but really couldn't bring my self to do it. I couldn't bring another synthetic, mass produced highly flammable costume into the house. I guess I was only thinking that buying one would save time and as my sciatica was really playing up, save me hours of sitting in my sewing room. I was going to buy the doll as I really couldn't re-create the one that Minnie had gazed at for months in every toy store in the greater Sydney area.

So I did the right thing and I made the dress. I used McCalls pattern (M5494), view E, with a few minor adjustments. This was a rather involved pattern, with a fitted, lined bodice and full skirt and very fancy collar. I did have a few moments of yelling and crying and lots of late nights in order to get it finished. I added the cape, fixed with buttons on the shoulders. I also used velcro (at intervals) to hold the removable collar in place (the pattern used little plastic popper things). And I added the little red appliqued features on the puff sleeves. I used yellow satin for the skirt but decided to use a blue cotton drill for the bodice as I was concerned about sewing with too much shinny, shinny fabric. I also used a light blue for the sleeves as I believe that's what the 'real' Snow White has. The light blue fabric was a business shirt belonging to Steve that was up-cycled - his contribution to the dress!

I must admit I was very proud of it when I finished it, late on Christmas Eve. I had never before put in a zip so neatly - that zipper foot really works! But my smile didn't compete with Minnie's when she first saw it on Christmas morning. And that was in fact my favourite Christmas moment - seeing her smile at this dress. Actually, it's one of my all time favourite moments.

Oh, what am I saying! Well of course Santa really did all the sewing. What a clever chap.

Friday, 12 February 2010

Technical hitch, giveaway winner and more help needed...

(a random unrealated Minnie photo found on my husbands laptop...)

Apologies for the delay here in announcing the winner of my little giveaway but there have been some technical difficulties here at the Blue House, most significantly the demise of my laptop. I have been relying on my iPhone to stay connected to the world, and although the other Steve may disagree, this little marvel does have it's limitations. I am writing this on the phone but it's taken me a while to work out that you need to be in HTML edit mode. Enough of the boring service announcements...

The name suggestions have been outstanding! Some of your responses have so closely mirrored our own list - you know me so well! And there have been some wonderful new additions - who doesn't love Willa and Pepper and Ned? My husband is still finding this tough - he seemed to go little pale last night when, for the tenth time, I read out every comment we received. Still, we do about 9/10 weeks and then another 60 days after the baby is born before we legally need to name him or her.

Choosing a winner is tough with so many excellent name suggestions. So I didn't choose. My husband, who is struggling with his name choice commitment, chose Kylie's entry.

'I love the baby name game! Here are some of my favourite suggestions: Lucia, Sofia, Poppy and Harriet, Hugo, Oscar, Gabriel and Louie. For our baby, due in less than 2 weeks, we have chosen Lila Francis and Solomon Travis. You're more than welcome to share any of those.

As you can see she so kindly offered up her own baby name choice for her arrival, that by now should be here any day. I don't think there is anything more kind than that! Kylie, please email me when you read this and I will make sure that your little capelet is on its way to you soon!

Of course we still have not actually chosen a name but at least we have a lot more to add to the list. And please, keep the name suggestions coming - there will more another giveaway just before the baby is born! Desperate times people, desperate times!

PS - I have stolen a moment on my husbands laptop to finish this - mine is still out of it. I am now faced with the possibility of replacing my laptop and need more advice - iMac or PC? HELP

Tuesday, 2 February 2010


I am approaching a blog anniversary (200 posts) so I thought I would host a little giveaway. I am not very good at these I have the horrible feeling that something from the past is still waiting to be sent... opps. But this time I promise to be good. You see the giveaway item is sewn, finished and ready to go - all I need if a name and address to put on it. I am happy to post this anywhere in the world.

It's a little capelet, the little capelet above in fact. Something for a girl about 4, 5, or 6years old or more or less (its so hard to estimate as I am used to having a minnie Minnie that I don't really know what bigger girls are like)! I know its big on her so who knows? It will fit someone of some age, I am sure.

But you have to work for the prize! I need you to help me out here with baby names. I am after suggestions for girls and boys names as we don't know what we are having. Just to give some parameters, Minnie is really 'Stella Rose' and our baby that died is called 'Alice.' We like older names, nothing 'made-up' with mad spelling and we are not too keen on surnames as given names. And we have a German surname, starting with 'F' that is not easy to spell or to say. Tricky, I know. So please leave a comment with some name suggestions and we will pick a winner on Tuesday 9th February 2010.

Thank you in advance - our name list is looking a little thin on the ground!