Thursday, January 29, 2009

Christmas presents

As promised, here are ALL of the Christmas presents I made this year. Believe it or not, I was in a panic when we arrived at O'Hare only to find out that the suitcase with every gift was ... missing. My fabulous husband spent three hours on the phone the next day, and then five more hours driving to retrieve the suitcase. He was the hero of Christmas, without a doubt.

Max got a pirate crocodile with button eyes.

Sam, two months old, got an alien baby, who doesn't mind at all if he's covered with baby drool. He can be washed, if necessary!

Molly got a Molly Dolly. She's based on the pattern I've been using for the Ella Bella dolls, and she matches the skirt Miss M got as well. Love that crazy hair!

Simon got a 14-inch felt pizza, loaded with toppings. YUM!

Mary got a scarf and matching pin. The pin is a Heather Bailey mini pattern, the fabrics are Heather Bailey Pop Garden.

Vicki got a tote bag based on the charming handbag pattern from Amy Karol. I have requests for three of these now!

And Miss E? She got a cute little turtle buddy (Amy Karol book pattern) using scraps of Amy Butler fabric; a little worm named Stella, with pillow, blanket and mattress (she claims to be Slimey's girlfriend); and a twirly skirt in, of course, pink. (Molly's is the apple print.)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Update on my plans to sell

In short, I'm bummed.

I may not stand a chance of even opening my Etsy shop now. Not due to overscheduling or being too tired or anything like that. It's because of a law that has been passed and is about to go into effect on Feb. 10. If it is not amended, I won't be able to sell toys without having everything certified by a third party to prove it's not full of lead. Lovely, huh?

I had read about this months ago, after getting a heads-up from a friend, but I didn't believe it would go through as written ... It did. Any small businesses making toys, any home businesses, any crafters will NOT be able to continue selling dolls, stuffed animals, felt play food ... you name it. Handmade toys that are sold will be considered contraband, if you can believe that. It sounds like some weird law from the Burgermeister Meisterburger, in the Christmas movie "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town".

Welcome to what is about to become reality here in the United States, right now.

Curious? Do your part -- fast. Comments must be submitted by Jan. 30, so if you have time to write your senator or representatives, please do so.

Information is here. (With all links you will need.)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Inspirational friends

Man, I only *wish* I could be as creative with children's projects as my friend Heidi! I'm going to pimp her brand-new blog here because she always has the best ideas that combine books with activities for preschoolers and toddlers.

I will say that I found a cute book yesterday, by a part-time Austinite, and can easily use it to inspire Miss E with making Valentine's Day cards for our family and friends. It's called "The Day It Rained Hearts" by Felicia Bond. Creative and clever, just like Heidi. We've already had to stamp and color several sheets of construction paper since opening the cover!

Check out Heidi's blog:
Read 'Em and Leap

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Too-sweet sweets

I'm such a sucker for cute play food! I'm making some cute little petit fours for a friend's children and am in LOVE with the "My Favorite Felt Sweets" book I got for Christmas. Such adorable stuff, straight from Japan, of course! And today, Miss E and I found a tiny tin of play chocolates from Haba. All wooden, and maybe 1/2 or 3/4 of an inch apiece. 9 tiny chocolates in a tin -- how cute is that?!

Now I will have to make some of the chocolates out of the felt book, too. If you want to see some of the fun things that Haba makes, check these out:
fun play foods from Haba

S-W-E-E-E-E-E-E-E-T! Honestly, how can you resist some of these tiny things? You have to see and touch them to see just how tiny they are, but trust me, they are cute.

Now, one of these days, I'll have to post pics of all the Christmas gifts I made. Somehow, I did manage to make something like 9 gifts in a week. Whew!


Follow-up ...
It took less than an hour to make two tiny chocolates from the sweets book. They are shown here on an espresso saucer. I can't wait for Miss E to wake up so she can see them!

Catch up

No, not ketchup or catsup ... though we have done a lot with food lately, real and pretend. I'm quite behind here ... my apologies. Colds, travel, pregnancy, and gift-making have completely wiped me out for the last 6 or 7 weeks. I'm 14 weeks pregnant now ... yippee! But that seems to wipe out naptime crafting ... boo!

However, while hubby was away for the weekend after New Year's, Miss E picked out a fab and too cute little recipe from our "First Meals" book. I swear, these are some of the tastiest kids' dishes you'll find ... thank you, Annabel Karmel. So what did Miss E pick? Well, it was one of the most complicated recipes, of course, but what else did we have to do on a Saturday night? We made Sleeping Dolls. I think they are Sleeping Cannelloni in the book, but Miss E says Sleeping Dolls.

They taste phenomenal, and the decorating part was really quite simple. Miss E and I both enjoyed them, though the 2.5 hours of cooking did wipe me out. We had them for dinner with Daddy the next night, though, and he, too, said they were awesome. And aren't they just the cutest food you've ever seen on the dinner table?! Miss E asked for all the doll faces and hair. Those mushrooms and capellini were a hit, as were the olives (the feet). Lucky for me, she loves food. Spinach, mushrooms, all that made her a happy eater that night, though she was less in love with the cheese sauce. Nevermind, I loved it! Rich, and adorable ... and so much fun!