Thursday, November 29, 2012

Links and Such

Hi Friends! Happy Thursday (already?) I wish I could blog more on a daily basis, but the husband is gone most nights until after 10, sometimes later, leaving me and the toddler to make dinner together! (Sure if that's how you want to spin it!?) I have a few posts I want to share in the coming weeks- a fall wrap up, what I've been knitting, Home Decorating wish list, more home organizing tips (once I figure this out). In the meantime I have a midwife appointment today, hard to believe I am 21 weeks- i.e. half way there. Although sometimes it feels like I am already in my third trimester... more stretching and yoga required I guess.

So in conclusion of my rant, I will hopefully be able to share some of my desired blog posts with you in the coming weeks.  For now, here are this week's Links and Such!

recipe: paisley root and chestnut soup
lotus bowl hat- knitting pattern
wooden bicycle handles 
make a gigantic confetti wall- cute for a party or for the holidays
knit a chair
love this little ornament for our toddler...
cute holiday gift guide for little girls
Don't Open until Christmas- packing tape
DIY surprise balls- cute for christmas stockings... or for air travel with a little one?
I'm going to watch this Maria Bamford special tonight
the Holiday unwind

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cyber Monday Sale! Enjoy 25% off at GrayDayStudio

I'm participating in Cyber Monday today! All work in my studio shop is now 25% off!! 

I've already sold 5 garlands to a customer in Arizona. They are perfect for trimming your tree or decking the hall this year!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving and Gratitude...

I'm working on being more grateful... I figure it's the only remedy and life vest I have that will keep me from sinking into a super sad place some nights... this sounds more dramatic than perhaps it is, but this fall has had its challenges mainly that the husband is NEVER around, seriously- hardly ever around. And some days it seems like it would be easier if he was just gone for a few weeks straight because then at least you just suck it up and move on... rather than these random two hours we see him once or twice a week.  So that, plus being half way through my second pregnancy and taking care of a toddler, while trying to work from home and making sure our kitchen doesn't get eaten up by dirty dishes... made me stop and desperately download a gratitude app on my iPhone the other day.

It's a super simple app. In fact I could just make a gratitude "notes" on my phone, but something about it's officially-ness makes it hold me accountable. Of course the first time using it I got so distracted that I was late to pick up our daughter from her morning school... so it's a work in progress! But as many studies say- being grateful only leads to more gratitude and ultimately a happier outlook, one that will hopefully take more of the seeming knocks of parenthood, in my case, with a bit more grace....

So as Thanksgiving approaches tomorrow and we gather our thoughts together towards what we are grateful for... my goal is to work on drafting my gratitude list not in vein of "Dam I'm grateful I don't live in the middle east right now!" which even no matter how true that is, it's still a negative. Instead I will strive to make my gratitude focus around not just tallying up a certain number of things I'm grateful for... since that still feels consumeristic... but of just relaxing and being more in the moment. And since it's the Husband's rare day off... I will do just that.

In conclusion I primarily wrote this post to share a few pictures I took on Tuesday while the Husband and daughter and I were out on a little walk through the woods at Brandywine park. Since we don't have real weekends together as a family that often, our Tuesday was like our Saturday- breakfast out followed by a walk in the woods. It was a lovely fall day that hints towards winter's approach making me truly appreciate this stage of fall, there is something really beautiful about this landscape when only the brown remains.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2012

A Love Letter to Fall

hi all, happy Monday! Hope you had a nice weekend!?  Ours was mildly productive as being part time janitors to a toddler can feel... ; )  Since the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday is this Thursday, this week's love letter focuses around that theme. Enjoy and have a great start to your week.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

What I've Been Knitting: the Snoflinga Hat

After a little poll I took via my blog and instagram last week, I agreed with all the feedback and knit the Snoflinga hat! I love it. The pattern calls for you to block it, and I have yet to do so... and I'm assuming that it would create more of a slouch/bagginess than what I have going on here in the picture above. But I'm very happy with how it turned out. It was an easy, fast knit. I love the yarn and the color.

The state of my hat last night before toddler bedtime...

If interested and part of Ravelry (it's free and awesome!) you can read more about this project here, including some subtle modifications I made to ensure a nice fit.

Next on the needles- socks, toddler leg warmers... and maybe a cowl for myself!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Advice on taking family photos with a 2 year old...

It was our daughter's 2nd birthday at the end of October, and I learned something that I should have known by now... When trying to get a family picture of your husband, child and oh my god YOURSELF for a change! take the pictures at the beginning of the party!!! By the time I corralled all of us outside after the party was over, the toddler was D-O-N-E, DONE! And these few pictures we managed to take I'm afraid not even photoshop could cut and paste a good one together, or at least my photoshop skills won't get the job done. (although maybe I could photoshop her from the bottom left photo into the top left photo... hmmm!?)

I really should have known better, but it's hard when you are hosting a party to think about these things beforehand... we look like a tired bunch here and now I know why families get professional photos taken. You have to set time aside for these things... you can't squeeze it in after a huge over-sensitized event... but instead actually pick a day that follows a few days of consistent sleep instead of the husband's crazy work/school schedule.  No offense but photo shoots can be so cheesy... but now I get it! I still won't shell out the cash for a photo shoot... but in the future I will hopefully remember to have photos taken of us before the chaos of the day.

 Note: with hurricane Sandy and our daughter being under the weather I 'm still editing and gathering the pictures from her big birthday. I will share them on the blog by the end of the week as well as on our private family photo site.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Quick Poll: Which hat should I knit...?

I found this very nice yarn the other day to knit myself a hat this winter that is still a neutral without being in the gray family (for a change). And now for the pattern... I have many simple hats, I knit one for myself last year in gray ... and yet I still want to strike a balance between a casual staple that still maintains a bit of visual interest... (I'm over thinking this I know, it's been a long couple of weeks).

So here are two of my finalists. Hat A: aka Snoflinga Hat, even has an example of the hat knit in a similar yarn to the one I bought.

Hat B: aka Dolan Beret is by Quince and Co (my go to Mainers!). I love the subtle slouch of the hat, and the way it finishes at the top... I am however leaning towards knitting Hat A... as it seems to fit better with my yarn and purpose... I would knit Hat B in a Navy or dark Turquoise. 


My Yarn...

UPDATE: I got a lot of feedback through instagram and the consensus is Hat A (and Hat B to follow). I bought the pattern for Hat A and I will share a blog post when its finished! 

Monday, November 12, 2012

DIY: Side Table as Dog Bed

Our master bedroom is roomy in the sense that we are grateful we can fit our bed, both dressers, and a sweater chest in the room... there is not much wiggle room for creativity when it comes to arranging the furniture... everything seems to have its designated place.  That being said our bedroom no longer provided enough room for our dog's little crate. Not that I cried too much over this fact, it was always a bit of an eye sore, even with a vintage table cloth draped over it to mask it's plasticity. So after seeing this idea on Pinterest a while back, I knew a bedside table/ dog bed solution would be the perfect remedy to our lack of space.

I went to Salvation Army and picked up this little nightstand and simply tore the single drawer out, cleaned it and put the dog bedding inside... no real need to paint it (nor do I have the time, i.e. it's not a priority). Our dog Millie actually likes it in there, it helps that it's a sturdy piece, not wobbly and not too far off the ground. Of course she prefers sleeping in our bed. But I often find her in there when she needs a proper hiding place from the toddler.

Or if you have $600, you can get this little side table for your pooch!

A Love Letter to Fall

Hey folks! hope you had a nice weekend! ours was productive, as productive as it can be with a toddler who is under the weather! but still we managed to keep working at organizing our new digs, little by little! Here is this week's Love Letter to Fall! Hope your fall is beautiful this week.

( by Miguel Ángel Oyarbide)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Links and Such

Hey all, a little late in the day, but here is this week's Links and Such post, enjoy!

really awesome giveaway!
DIY: how to build a winter village
might have to try this solid perfume, by my favorite soap lady
recipe: soft poached eggs with sweet potato hash browns
recipe: cheese buns!
pretty stinking cute
cool teepee pillow, fun for a kid's room or funky in your living room
wow, these cook books look fabulous!
cool socks
pretty embroidery
a lovely mug for tea
check out this blog: Homestead Revival 

What I've been Knitting: A Soft and funky hat for the Toddler

I have a few "What I've been knitting posts" waiting to be shared... but my blogging time is at a minimum as I continue to organize our house and work on orders that are coming in through my Studio shop and my Knit shop! But here's a little hat I whipped up at the beginning of October-ish for the little one. I wanted the hat to be soft, warm but not itchy, so I chose a pink baby Alpaca yarn. I also wanted the hat to match her green coat, her white coat, and her dark brown down jacket.

Here she is rocking her hat on Saturday at the playground with her friend Mason.

It's fun to finally feel mildly confident about knitting a hat without a pattern. I simply measured her head (it's a big one!) and then cast on two different times, the second time I got the right amount of stitches to ensure a nice fit! I did a little rib border, then knit the rest of the hat in a purl stitch. I started the decrease at about 5 inches to ensure a looser fit at the top- for a slouchy style but also to ensure that it will hopefully fit next winter as well! I made a decrease every row by slipping the two stitches from the one needle to the other and then knitting them together, this creates the spiral effect you see here.

Then I topped it off with a pom pom!

She's already worn it quite a bit this fall, and it proved very cozy during yesterday's little snowfall (as seen here).  I'm planing on knitting her a hat in a dark pink eco wool and lining it with fleece- for those really really cold days. Yes there is quite a list accumulating this knitting season! Stay tuned for future wooly projects.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Ways to Help those Affected by Super Storm Sandy

It can feel very overwhelming to know how to help after a natural disaster affects so many people as Hurricane Sandy did... giving to the RedCross is great... but honestly not very effective. I try to avoid donating to such a big corporation because your money is not always going to specific victims but to fund the whole process, which is great and necessary, but I would rather support those on the ground, volunteers etc with specific needs. Short of me packing up our car with toddler in toe and driving up to Staten Island to help dig people out in person, bringing them food, clothing etc... there are more specific and direct ways I can help that prove to be a nice middle ground.

Because there is a real need out there for aid... it seems that most of the focus has been on getting power back to NYC and Brooklyn... but Staten Island, Long Island, etc are struggling! The Red Cross and FEMA have yet to make their way up there, and the temperatures are dropping and many people still don't have electricity, nor is there adequate shelters set up... and if there is an alternative, many people want to stay in their homes to ward off the looters that come through at night- awesome!

So here are ways that we can directly help those affected.

Amazon Registry: Simply purchase specific goods on the list and they will be sent to a church in Brooklyn for distribution.

* Robinhood

* Occupy Sandy Facebook page

* Read this Great Post about the forgotten areas around NYC, PLUS at the bottom of the article is an extensive list of places to donate to other than the Red Cross.

* An Extensive list of Drop off locations for Donations... and what they need.

* Live in "DUMBO"? Here's a drop off location.

* Plus helpful tips on WHAT to Give when donating

*article: the forgotten Rockaways, plus how Occupy Sandy is kicking the red cross's butt

Or donate new kids' apparel, shoes, books, toys, baby products, and home goods here: 

Hurricane relief efforts: Ship warm coats for babies and toddlers in sizes 0-5 directly to Baby Buggy (306 W. 37th St., 8th Fl; NYC 10018).

And in case you need a greater kick in the pants to inspire you to help- read this article, it offers an in depth look in to how crazy this storm really was and still is for many people.

Alright, I've said my peace, but I'll probably continue to post more information on how to help in the future! But share these links with your friends, family and co workers... plus many businesses and companies are pooling together to donate, with some companies matching employee donations. Get cracking! And feel free to post in the comments other ways to help and donate!

A Love Letter to Fall

Hey there, hope you had a relaxing weekend!? Our's was kinda blah- the husband worked and then we spent sunday running errands and just trying to feel like we are on top of our to-do list, while still hanging out as a family... not sure if we accomplished either one of those.  But here it is a new week, the first full week in November, which is exciting.  So hopefully this week's Love Letter to Fall offers up some crisp- late fall inspiration for you... showing that the very end of fall can be just as beautiful as its peak. enjoy!


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