An exciting month ahead

The blog might be a little quiet for the next month as my little family is heading off on an exciting adventure. The Hubby and I are taking the little one back to the UK to meet the family he has not yet seen. It is going to be a marathon getting there (two flights and a journey time of over 24 hours) but I keep reminding myself that there will be lots of pairs of hands ready to have a cuddle when we get to the other end so it won’t be so bad. We are away for a month in total, spending half the time with Hubby’s family and half the time with mine. It is going to be awesome for everyone, great for us to catch up with people we haven’t seen for a long time (it’s six years since we last went back) and great for the little man to get to know his extended family.

So please excuse my quietness, I promise it is all in a good cause and I will be back as soon as the jet lag has gone on our return!

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Trouser obsession?

I think I may be a little bit obsessed with making trousers! I remembered some rather funky denim type fabric I had in my stash and I knew just how to turn it into the most awesome pair of pants for the little man. So as soon as he was down for his afternoon nap I was straight to work.

Rocket trousers

Rocket trousers

As the fabric I was going to use has little stars embroidered over it I decided to create a little appliquĂ© rocket to go on one leg out of felt. I carefully sewed that on first and then set to putting the trousers together. I added contrasting yellow stitching down the leg seams to create a little more detail as well. I have to hand stitch the leg hems and they are a little wonky but I guess that just adds to the hand made appeal (doesn’t it?!).

I’m out of elastic now and should probably be concentrating on getting this little family ready for a very big journey that is happening next week so no more trousers for a while. Maybe I should try a shirt next, although I am a little apprehensive about whether my sewing skills are up to that!

Exhausting weekends and fancy fabric

My weekend was exhausting and not in a good way. The little one has his first cold (at least that’s what we think it is as he does sound awfully snuffly) and with that came a temperature. This led to a very grumpy baby. Thankfully Hubby was around to help (although he was feeling jet lagged after finishing a run of seven night shifts). We did manage a nice walk on the Saturday and Sunday I was given a pass to go shopping and get a haircut, but other than that is was trying to keep the little one happy. It felt a little like whatever we did just didn’t cut the mustard although I am sure that has a lot to do with a squiffy perspective and a feeling of over tiredness.

My beautiful new fabric

My beautiful new fabric

It would seem that whatever is bothering him is still bothering him as his temperature is still raised and he’s still grumpy. I was given permission to head to he fabric shop today though and was very happy to see that the fabric I have been coveting was on offer meaning I HAD to buy it! Four meters of fabric, two patterns and a few bits and bobs later (including a bit of a dent in the bank balance!) I now have the means to make myself a nice skirt and a pair of funky trousers for the little man. All I need now is the energy to get on and do it!

The truth about babies…what I’ve learnt so far!

I thought I would share some of the things I have learnt in my first six months (almost) of mummyhood. In no particular order…

1. Your baby will always fall asleep on a walk just before you get home/back to the car, just in time for you to have to wake them moving them into their car seat/bed.

2. Just when you think you have a schedule happening your baby will change things up just to keep you on your toes.

3. Your baby will always wait until your other half has gone to work before doing the biggest, smelliest poo possible (Monday mornings are a particularly popular time for him/her to do this)

4. Whenever you think it is safe to get a hot drink/some food your baby will prove you wrong.

5. Just when you think your baby can not scream any more they will find their second wind.

6. Your baby will save his/her cutest smile for the time he/she knows you are most annoyed/frustrated with them (I’m sure this is a built in survival mechanism!)

7. Your baby will behave impeccably around other people, making you out to be exaggerating everything you say about them. The second those people have left your baby will revert to normal behaviour.

8. Your baby will save their loudest burp/fart for when you are in company (but it’s ok to laugh at baby burps and farts!).

9. You will try all those things you were told not to do, anything to get some sleep (a cuddle or a snuggle can solve many things)

10. Despite and because of all these things it is an amazing first six months (even if it is at times difficult to see this)

Please let me know any pearls of wisdom you might have learnt about mummyhood (or daddyhood) as it is always good to get warning about what might be ahead!

Busy, busy, busy

I have no time to make things for us any more, all my crafting time is taken up with making hats for other people! I’m not complaining though as it is nice to have something purposeful to do, to be bringing in a little extra cash for treats and to have the beginnings of a little business (maybe!). I currently have 10 hats on order and excitingly a few repeat orders which suggests I did a good job of the first hat!

I am in the process of designing myself a little logo and have been refining my ideas. This week I have made a rugby themed bobble hat (as the local team won the Super 14 championship), a beanie with a digger on it and a couple of minion hats. Next on the list is a little fedora style hat. Despite being busy with these I am making plenty of time for my little man who is very time demanding! I never want this to completely take over my life as it is supposed to be a means to gain some extra cash more than an attempt to bring in an extra salary and I am aware that most of my orders are from friends and that they will only want so many hats! I’m still awaiting my first on line order.

Hubby is impressed with my efforts and celebrates every new order with me, he’s even become chief bobble maker (he’s very good at getting them kind of splodgy, if that’s even a word!). Possibly in the future I might look to sell at craft fairs but we have a trip to the UK to get out of the way first and then some other news that I will share in my next post, so I think that will be a development maybe for next year.

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A little digger hat for a little man.

Bring on the apple

We made the decision to try the little one on some food. He’s been watching us eat for a couple of weeks now and makes the occasional grab for my cup of tea and then on Sunday he managed to get a piece of apple peel and was in seventh heaven licking it (to the point that he got very distressed when it broke!) With this in mind I stewed up some apple ready for our first attempt as he seemed to already like the taste.

Deciding whether it was time has been tricky with so much advise around about when is the right time. Lots of Mummies I know have already started their little ones on food at around the four month mark, other people say wait until six months. Our little one has never been a very consistent eater as well, some days he will take almost a litre of milk in a day and other days we are lucky to get him to have more than 700ml. I had been advised to wait until he was more consistent but to be honest I don’t think he ever will be so we decided to try and figured if he wasn’t interested he wouldn’t take it. In other words nothing tried, nothing gained. All this advice is enough to make someone want to tear their hair out!

I guess that’s the problem with babies, there is so much “advice” out there that you can end up feeling very over whelmed. As a first time Mum I want someone to tell me what to do, after all I don’t have a clue what I’m doing, but there is no one answer and there never will be. It’s taken time but I realise that what works for my little one doesn’t work for another. Some of the babies I know sleep and eat like champions, some lie quietly taking the world in, some are big, some are small. My little boy is a power napping, constantly wiggling,fussy eating little monkey! Together Hubby and I are slowly working out what works and also figuring out that what works one day might not work the next, it’s all good as we are learning together.

He didn’t look too impressed with the new experience of apple and pulled some wonderful faces. Fingers crossed he will slowly grow to like the experience of eating and we will have fun giving him the chance to try new flavours.

There’s an octopus on your babies head!

I am the first to admit that sometimes my ideas can be a little bit out there, a little bit strange, a little bit kooky! Well my inner odd voice certainly took control when I decided to make my next baby hat and somehow I came up with the idea of a hat with a little octopus sitting on it. I think I may have been slightly influenced by this Mitsubishi advert in which an octopus takes up residence on a boys head and stays there until he sees a much more attractive prospect, the Mitsubishi.

I am getting a bit of a pro at making my basic bonnet now and another quick search on the internet came up with the perfect Octopus pattern which I could adapt. The octopus was nice and quick to make up and I think he looks rather nice in his two tone red (yes I ran out of wool and had to change but I can pretend it was deliberate!). I added a red and yellow border to the hat, my usual plaited ties and a little yellow starfish on one of the ear flaps and Bob’s your uncle one rather … umm … interesting hat had been created!

The hat is being added to my Felt shop so fingers crossed someone out there shares my love on the slightly unusual! Although saying that I have already had a request from a friend for an adult sized one!

A new venture

Being on maternity leave is great and I love spending time with my little man(providing he’s not screaming his head of for no fathomable reason!) but there are times when I wish I could contribute again. With this in mind I made the decision this week to start trying to sell some of my crochet baby hats and set myself up a Felt shop.

It is exciting to have my hand made hats up for sale but at the same time a little daunting. A lot of people sell crochet baby hats so trying to make mine stand out is hard work. I like to think that I am making lovely items but obviously the only way to know that other people think the same is when they buy something. Pricing the items is tricky too. If they are too expensive people won’t buy them but if they are too cheap you are devaluing the labour that goes into producing a handmade item. Felt is a New Zealand based craft website though so I keep my fingers crossed that the people selling there will recognise this and already have made the decision that handmade is worth something.

I put my first hat up on Wednesday and two more have followed. Since then I have checked numerous times to see how many times they’ve been looked at with fingers crossed that one might have sold! So far all three are still on offer and another (rather kooky) one is being made. Fingers crossed they do get noticed though as I am rather proud of them.

My boy looks awesome in hats

The aviator hat

The aviator hat

As I have said before I love making hats for the little one and that is what I have been busy doing. Firstly I made a new aviator hat (pattern by Kat Goldin of Slugs on the Refrigirator) as the one he came home in is now too small. It’s a really easy pattern to follow and I can make one in about three hours all toll (providing the boy behaves).

I also decided that I might try and sell some of my hats in order to bring in a few extra cents and I was given my first commission, a fedora hat. Now I had no idea what one of those was but thank goodness for the internet I was quickly enlightened and a pattern was downloading itself onto my computer.

The Fedora hat

The Fedora hat

The pattern was from Posh Patterns at Craftsy and was very well written. It was easy to follow and the base of the hat was made within about an hour and a half (afternoon naps are great!). I decided the hat looked a little plain without some colour so set about making a two tone band to go round it which then took me another hour and a half (although that was partly due to the nap ending!). I’m really happy with how it turned out and the little one looks so cute in it. The lady who asked me to make one likes it too so now I need to make another one!

Christmas crafting

Obviously Christmas is going to be that little bit more special for us this year, our first Christmas with the little one. With this in mind I decided that he needed his own special stocking. Now actually designing one was a little beyond my brain at the moment so I decided to go down the kit route and so purchased a Dimensions Felt Works kit called “Toboggan Trio”.

The kit

The kit

The kit has everything you need in it except some softie guts and a piece of tissue paper (I was glad of the excuse to go out and buy a massive bag of softie guts). It is a lot like sewing by numbers, each piece has a number and you have step by step instructions about how to sew them together provided. You need to have a pretty steady hand to cut the pieces out, especially as some of them are pretty small. The in depth instructions mean that even a beginner could easily manage this project.

I am about a third of the way through at the moment and I am pleased with how it is looking so far. It is time consuming but a lovely way to unwind at the end of the day when the little one is in bed. I love to create my own designs but sometimes it is nice to turn the brain off a little and let someone else do that hard work and know that you are going to get a lovely item at the end of it. I will keep you updated on progress.