Monday, February 25, 2013

24 weeks—an update

Yesterday was the 24 week mark—now we have more behind us than in front of us and it won’t be too much longer before we are holding our little princess in our arms. I cannot wait to meet her! Between the little girls at church and my baby cousin we got to see yesterday, our arms are aching to hold our Livie and see who she looks like.

Olivia has introduced me to several new things over the last few weeks: sciatic nerve pain, heartburn, feeling like a beached whale, waddling occasionally, and NESTING. Nesting hit me full force last week and I was ready to repaint and redecorate everything. Suddenly I urgently want to get things done before the baby gets here. Some of my projects amuse Jacob and some of them make him cringe—like wanting to repaint the bedroom and make a new headboard and build the co-sleeper and get the flowerbeds ready….

I love feeling her move and kick all day. She is so active and now her movement are starting to be more than just kicks and flutters. She makes my belly move so much that we can see it and sometimes it feels like she is gently patting me from the inside. I love it! I never knew it would be this much fun <3

My belly is ever-expanding, but I can still see my feet! Adjusting my wardrobe has been, well, let’s say it’s been a learning experience. I’m finally starting to break down and make some maternity clothes. I’ve bought a few outfits but it is getting hard to find what I want and like. I’m currently working on a pattern for a knit top. It might be finished by this weekend, but who knows? ;)

Gifts have started arriving in little spurts for our girl. Sweet little dresses and shoes are hanging in the guest bedroom closet next to her Daddy’s work shirts. I started a smocked dress for her last week. All the smocking needs to  be finished is a few little purple flowers around the wreath.

After all this time of making little dresses for other little girls, I’m finally making pretty stuff for my own angel ;)

Olivia loves to listen to her Daddy’s voice—she gets very hyper when he talks to her. She also LOVES church. When I play the organ or piano she moves and jumps so much that it threw me off and made me lose my place a few times until I got used to it. This last weekend I was listening to a song that our choir is learning and as soon as I turned it on she started acting like she was at church. So far the only kind of music that she really responds to is black gospel and some classical. The black gospel is understandable since we are at church a lot ;) This song always gets a reaction from her—it is the new one that our choir learned:

I’ll close with that. I’ve got to play catch-up today after our long weekend and anniversary service for our church. Laundry is taunting me and it needs attention.

Hope you have a great week!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Clothespin Bag Tutorial and Pattern

In the vein of my post last week about line-dried laundry, I thought I would share with you a pattern/tutorial for an easy, quick clothespin bag. This bag can be whipped up in about 30 minutes and is a great project for a beginning seamstress, whether she be 8 or 48 ;)
Enjoy and let me know what you think of it. If you have any questions feel free to ask me.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Elisabeth Elliot on Love


“This love of which I speak is slow to lose patience - it looks for a way of being constructive.
Love is not possessive.
Love is not anxious to impress nor does it cherish inflated ideas of its own ideas.
Love has good manners and does not pursue selfish advantage.
Love is not touchy.
Love does not keep account of evil or gloat over the wickedness of other people. On the contrary, it is glad with all good men when truth prevails.
Love knows no limits to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. It is, in fact, the one thing that stands when all else has fallen.”

Elisabeth Elliot, Let Me Be a Woman

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hung Out to Dry

The Benefits of Line-Dried Laundry


At the beginning I want to say that this is not a dryer bashing post. I am so thankful for my electric dryer! It enables me to do laundry when it is raining, or in the middle of the night if I need to. It is a great blessing to me, but I am thrilled to not have to use it for every load of laundry now that I have a clothesline in my backyard.

       I love crawling into a bed freshly made with sheets fresh off of the clothesline. It makes the whole room smell like fresh air and sunshine. When I bring my line-dried clothes inside and put them away I feel like I am making the whole smell fresh. I grew up with a clothesline and line-dried laundry, so that is what “home” smells and feels like to me. I love looking out of my kitchen window and watching my clean laundry billow in the breeze.

    I’ve been greatly enjoying my clothesline the last few weeks. I didn’t realize how much joy I was  going to get from something as simple as hanging my laundry outside almost everyday. I get excited about doing laundry now—which for me is big because I am notorious for doing other things to avoid laundry.

Some people curl their nose up at line-dried laundry. I understand this is personal preference, but to me this is silly and the benefits outweigh the reasons some prefer to use a dryer. One thing that I hear from several people is that “line-dried towels are scratchy!” They are, but it’s not like you are using a Brillo pad to dry off with ;).  A lot of people (Jacob and I included) prefer them that way. Line-dried towels absorb much more moisture than towels dried in a dryer. When using a dryer-dried towel after being used to towels hung to dry, it feels like the soft towel is only smearing the moisture around and not absorbing much at all.


Another argument that some people have is that it takes too much time to hang clothes out. It really doesn’t take much longer than tossing them in the dryer. The more you hang laundry on the line, the faster you’ll get.  I prefer to fold the clothes as I take them off of the clothesline so all I have to do is put them away when I bring them inside. If the laundry is already folded, I will put it away quicker than if I have a pile of laundry looming on the couch waiting to be folded.

Growing up we hung everything outside, but since I’m in the city with neighbors on both sides, I hang out everything except underwear and socks. I do use my dryer for those things and anything small.

Benefits of line-dried  clothes:

~Hanging your clothes outside to dry will help cut down on your utility bill, whether you have an electric or gas dryer. Especially if you hang out items that take a long time to dry in a dryer such as towels, blankets, and blue jeans.

~Hanging clothes in the sun is an effective way to get rid of stains. My mom has used this method with great success over the years, simply hanging the stained garment outside in the sun for a few days. This works very well for baby garments which are easily soiled and stained.

~In the same vein, hanging whites outside is a great way to keep them white without having to bleach them very often.

~The sun is a great way to disinfect and kill germs. Many years ago hospitals would periodically take all of the bedding, linens, beds, etc., outside and let them sit in the sunshine. The UV rays in the sun did away with all sorts of germs. I learned this from a nurse friend of mine and she said that an older nurse told her of this practice and also that staph infections started going rampant after the hospitals discontinued this practice.

After learning this, I always try to take bedding and pillows outside to air and soak up sunshine after we’ve been sick.

My mom noticed that when she didn’t hang my siblings’ cloth diapers outside in the sun, but dried them in the dryer, they were more prone to diaper rashes and other irritations.

~You can use less starch on shirts, denim skirts and blue jeans if they are dried on a line rather than in a dryer. Sometimes you can get away with not ironing at all if you make sure all of the hems, collars, and pocket flaps are straight when you first put them on the line.

~It’s a great way to make sure you are getting plenty of vitamin D. My mood and spirits are much improved when I get a little sunshine every day and hanging out my laundry is a wonderful way to accomplish this.


Hurray for clotheslines!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sugar and Spice


We have pink in our future! It’s time to start making bows and frilly dresses ;) I can’t wait for our Olivia Grace to get here!