Wednesday, December 30, 2009

What I made, Part 2

This is the "Buttercup bag." I made this for my sister to give to her mother-in-law, and I think she really liked it.

(this is an organic button, by the way. I bought it because I thought it was cute, not for it's organic-ness. Seriously though... organic buttons??? What in the world is an organic button???)

The only thing I wish was different about this bag is that it came out a bit smaller than I would have liked. Perhaps I can enlarge the pattern or something? I really likd this pattern though- it was really easy to follow and the bag came out looking great! You can get a free version of this pattern here!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

What I made, Part 1

Well, since I've been MIA in the blogging world since before Thanksgiving, I guess I better tell you what I've been up to. Sewing. Sewing. Sewing. Sewing. Sewing..... you get the point.

I will do a series of posts this week to show you what I've made in the last few weeks. I made a lot of gifts for people, but mostly for people to give to other people. I myself did not give a whole lot of gifts this year, but the ones I did give actually weren't handmade. Isn't that sad? All this time spent sewing and I don't even give handmade gifts. But I did allow OTHER people to give handmade gifts. I guess it all works out in the end.

I made this "Mommy and Me" apron set for my sister's sister-in-law and niece.

I had to use the adult mannequin for this picture, even though this is the child's apron. Mabel (the mannequin) is a very small lady, but I also made the apron pretty big so it would fit my sister's little niece for a long time.

I've been doing this new thing with the pockets, sewing them on an angle. I think I saw them like that on an old vintage apron pattern. Either that or I totally came up with the idea myself! Haaa, doubt it!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Looky what I got!

No, these are not real nakey people.

I got these two beauties from Josh for my birthday a few weeks back, but since I lost my camera cord I couldn't tell you about them (Sidenote: Thank you for your prayers - I (and by "I," I clearly mean my hubster) found my camera cord! It was between the couch cushions, in case you were wondering. So, crisis solved. Phew. I can now get back to blogging.)

I really needed a good way to display aprons at craft shows, and also the mannequins certainly help with picture taking for my etsy shop and blog of course. Aren't they so pretty!

Anyway, I decided to name these two lovelies: Josephine and Mabel. They are so close to looking like real people, I just can't have them sitting in my house not having names. I'm weird like that. Although, I'm not sure what healthy woman has a waist that small!

Also, for Christmas I got three sewing books. I absolutely cannot wait to try like 589 new sewing projects now. These are the books I got:

I must admit, I was feeling quite pooped after sewing so much over the holidays. I was feeling uninspired, tired, lazy, and I just wanted to put my sewing machine away for a while. But after paging through these books, I can't wait to get back to it! Good thing I took off from teaching all of this week so I can get sewing. And blogging.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Peace, Grace, and Hope

Here at the MacNeill home, we celebrate Christmas. We celebrate it because we believe Jesus was sent to bring peace, grace, and hope.

However, I realize not everyone celebrates Christmas. But we can all join together to celebrate and strive for peace- we could use more of that in our world. Grace- couldn't we all stand to give each other the benefit of the doubt more, forgive more easily, and let go of past hurts. Hope- hope for brighter days, hope for an end to poverty, cancer, sex trafficking, and prejudice.

Whatever holiday you celebrate,

May you cling to your family,

Kiss your loved ones,

Cuddle the furry ones,

Drink some spirits (or non-spirits),

Eat lots.

Be merry.

Be thankful.

And may you find and give more peace, grace, and hope in 2010!

Merry Christmas and happy holidays!

Much Love,
Abby and Josh

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Lost (not the TV show)

I had every intention of posting several times this week, telling you about all of the wonderful things I've been making. But I lost something... something pretty important to a blogger...

...My camera cord that plugs into my computer. It is lost and no where to be found. I've even cleaned several times this week hoping to run into it. So, I can't upload any pictures. And I am SAD because I have so much to show you!

Actually, I've lost several things since moving into this apartment. I'm starting to wonder if a thief lives here, or if it's the tight quarters, or maybe I'm just going crazy. I've lost:

-my camera cord
-my tape measurer for sewing
-my button hole ripper


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Things that make Snails happy

1. Josh's semester is over, and he is now on break with only ONE SEMESTER LEFT!! Hallelujah, praise Jesus.

2. It's been a busy week for my etsy shop, Sewing Snails. If you had checked it last week, you would have seen "0 sales." But if you look now, you will see "7 sales." Seven!! Wahoooooo! This makes Snails very happy. Ok, half of them were family, but I did have a few real sales this week too!

3. I am a year older than last time I blogged. Yep, I turned the big two-three on Dec. 10. I don't feel much different. Just a little more blah. I feel like being 23 is a really boring age. 21 is like, "wahooo I can drink!" 22 is like, "wahooo people don't think i'm a drunk 21 year old anymore!" And 23 is like, "meh. blah." Oh well. I got some clothes for my birthday, and also... (see next point)

4. My techie/geeky sister Bekah purchased some URLs for me for my birthday. (Is that what it's called?) Yes, she thinks of those kinds of things. She's also the sister that helps me when my font gets bigger and bigger with each paragraph and I can't fix it. And then she laughs at me and posts about it on facebook. Well anyway, you will soon be reading my blog at musingsofasnail DOT COM. Yay! Or is it abisnails dot com? I forget.

5. I played Handel's Messiah this weekend. It was so lovely. I've heard so many of the pieces my entire life, but I never played it until now. I've been humming "All We Like Sheep" all weekend and trying to teach Josh the bass part. Hil. Arious.

6. I've been sewing. Sewing sewing sewing. I've had several orders for things from family members, and I'm trying to get it all done in time for Christmas. I definitely will, I'm just not sure anyone will be getting presents from ME this year because I have had no time whatsoever to shop.

I will post pictures of the things I've been making this week! Have a GREAT Monday, everyone.

Monday, December 7, 2009

You may think they are angels, but...

I know two kitties who are not going to be visited by Santa this year.

Yes, they knocked the food over themselves. Naughty naughty.

Friday, December 4, 2009

I have a secret....

Do you have a secret place you go to that you don't want anyone else to know about because you want it all for yourself? Well, I found mine. And because I love you, I will share what it is.

One evening while eating dinner I noticed how much fun the cats were having lying under the Christmas tree. Like this:

Ok, they're clearly not having fun, just sleeping. But they also like to play with the lights and look up at the tree.

So I wanted to try it. So Josh and I finished our dinner and scooched under the tree, heads all the way under on the tree skirt, and let me tell you.... it is magical. It's like you're in an enchanted forest, or Narnia. It's like the whole world goes away, and it's just you, the person next to you, and green and lights and Christmas galore. It's really breathtaking.

So the next night, Lydia was over and Josh and I told her about it. So all three of us got under the tree (yeah it was a bit tight), and she LOVED it. And that's when I knew I needed to tell you about it. Do it. You won't regret it. Oh and you have to turn the rest of the lights out to get the full effect.

Ok, now you think I'm really weird and you might stop following my blog? Well fine then.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

What I've been doing, besides not blogging

I haven't been blogging. Duh. I feel guilty, but I shouldn't, because it's supposed to be for fun and fun only. So there, I'm done feeling guilty.

Here's what I've been up to:

1. We had Thanksgiving in the good ol' US of A last week. I made mashed potatoes and two apple pies. I still have half of an apple pie in my fridge if anyone wants to come eat it! We had quite a potato peel incident right before we had to leave for T-giving- someone (ahem, Lydia) forgot to run the disposal until there were 10 lb. of potato peels in the sink. Let's just say we had to use the toilet plunger in the kitchen sink. Yuck.

2. Being a kitchen failure. It all started with the potato peel incident of 2009 (I blame Lydia only to take the real blame off of myself- I know, I'm a saint). On Tuesday, I was boiling a whole chicken, and while trying to take it out (with two large spoons) of the hot, greasy, gross water, it slipped and fell back in the hot, greasy, gross water and splashed ALLLLLL over me, the floor, the wall. Well, me being a genius thought that would just be a once and done thing- so I tried again. Slipped again. Tried again. Slipped again. Humph. Greasy, gross, chicken water all over me and my kitchen.

3. I started a fire. In the kitchen, no less. I think remnants of the greasy, gross, chicken water incident of 2009 were still on the burner of the stove the next day. I was trying to boil some rice, but I turned the wrong burner on. There was a lid to a pot on the [wrong] burner that I turned on, and while I'm doing dishes, Josh yells, "ABBY!" I turn around, and there is a flame coming from the burner. Yes. I caught the metal lid on fire. Oh, you didn't know that metal could catch on fire?? Me either. Welp folks, she's done it again.

4. Decorating for Christmas. Hopefully I won't catch our Christmas tree on fire with my mad kitchen skills. We got our tree this past weekend. I think it is the earliest I have ever gotten a tree in my life. Growing up we always got it about the week OF Christmas.

Also, Josh broke my kitchen scissors trying to cut the top of our Christmas tree off. I will be expecting a new pair in my stocking!

Dancing and [not] being a hipster. My sisters and I (minus Lydia- sorry Lyd) and our husbands/boyfriend went hipster bowling and dancing this past weekend. I'm REALLLLLLY good at bowling. I think my score was 54. Here's a pic of my great form:

Best picture ever:

I clearly didn't get the no smiling memo.

Love these girls! (I love you too, Lydia!)

Monday, November 23, 2009

New Etsy Items and Craft show Bomb

My friend Jess and I went to a craft show this weekend. It was a flop/bomb/fail/hilarious day. There were lots of old ladies and a woman selling tupperware. It's a CRAFT show.... did she MAKE the tupperware? I don't think so.

Ha. Anyway, Jess and I had fun together. I sold one item and Jess sold two. It was at the local library, and I don't think anyone knew about it unless they happened to come in the library for some books. There was also this big parade going on outside, so that didn't help.

Here's Jess at our table

In the last two hours of the show I think about three people walked in the door. One woman came up to our table and said, "Aprons? People don't wear those anymore!" Well gee, thanks lady. That's half my table.

We had fun though, and we hope to do another one again soon. It was a good first show. Well, sorta.

So, now all of the items that didn't sell at the show (meaning, like, all of them) are now in my Etsy shop. Take a looksie! And don't forget my faithful blog followers get 20% off your order!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Auction items and zipper virgin

So remember when I told you about the art auction that I submitted some items in? Well, I sold both items (woo hoo!), and just wanted to show you what they were.

First, the Delilah Bag that I had in my Etsy shop- she's all decked out with her 'sewing snails' tags.

The second item was something I made specifically for this event- this 'dishes' apron.

I love this fabric. I thought the cranberry color made it perfect for the upcoming holidays.

And here's my table at the auction!

I am still buried with sewing projects. I'm beginning to fear that I will still be buried until Christmas. I'm working on this one bag for a friend- she requested a zipper instead of a snap, which I usually do. I'm a zipper virgin... Let's just say my kittens have had to cover their ears because of all the cursing, throwing, punching, etc. I've been doing getting this darn zipper in. I have to work on it in like 5 minute increments now, or else something really nasty might happen. I mean it. I'm gettin meeeeeeeeaaaaaannnnnn. Andrea, I promise it will be done before Christmas, though don't count on any Christmas cheer from me. :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Please still love me....

Ohhhh dear blog.....

I hope you still love me. I have been such a bad blogger. You must understand... I have been drowning, drowning, in sewing projects. Sewing projects that I started weeks ago, before I moved- projects people have asked me to do. So if you are one of those people, I have not forgotten about you. I working on it. I'm WORKIN on it people, sheesh, give me a break!! :)

Believe me, I WANT to get these projects done. So badly. You see, I just got some fabric in the mail yesterday, and one of the cuts was for my linen "closet"- (more like a hole in the wall) I am going to make a curtain. See? It needs one. Bad.

But I promised myself I won't do it, even though it will take like 11.5 seconds, until all of my projects for other people are done.

So, in all my busyness, I have neglected my blog. And I shall neglect it more until I get these projects done. I'm sorry. Do you feel like you are on the back burner? Cause you are. Please still love me.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Sewing Snails tags

I was invited to submit some items for auction at the Lansdale Silent Art Auction, to benefit the Boys and Girls Club. I am very excited for this- 1. because I will actually sell something (unless nobody bids... sad snails), and 2. it is for a good cause. I was honored to be asked to submit some items- I don't often look at what I do as "art," because I still feel like I am learning and often feel very inadequate! But then again, I feel very inadequate when I play violin too, but I look at that as art. I guess it's because sewing is still so new to me... it just feels different.


I made these tags for my items today. A little while ago I found this "snail" fabric from, and it was on sale for like 2.50/yd or something outrageous like that! So I bought like 4 yards.

I wasn't sure what to do with it, so I thought I could at least make some snails tags. I think they came out cute, but you tell me what you think.

I used "Wonder Under." It's this paper-like stuff that you iron on to the wrong side, peel off, and it leaves this glue, and then you iron on another piece of fabric. So basically you're bonding fabric to fabric.

I did this all while the plumber was here today... I got out of the shower this morning and stepped in soppy carpet in our bedroom. Yuck. So I was being crafty all day while the plumber was here. Good times.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Stuff/Junk/Crap/I don't say that other word

There's no time like when you move to realize how much stuff/junk/crap you have. I never really realized it until we put it all in one room to get ready for the move. Here's half of it:

There was still some stuff here:

And here:

And here:

And the thing is, we don't even have a whole lot of stuff. Compared to people who are older and have been married a long time, we really don't have much at all. But these pictures make me a little sick inside, knowing I have all this crap and some people can't even put food on the table for their family. The move has definitely made me more grateful for what I have, and we've realized we can live a lot more simply. So, we gave a lot of things away, and we put some things in storage (aka our parent's basements/garages). The whole moving weekend was a blur, and I'm just glad it's over now.

So... pictures of the new place, as promised:

"Oh, hi. Welcome to our new home! We love our new home, because mommy found the cat nip while we were packing to move, and we ate it alllllll while they were away this weekend. Puuuurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr."

(they're telling the truth)

Front door (ok, only door)

Dining room (still in need of a few pictures)

Living room, this is also where I give lessons

(Can you tell Delilah needs a little attention?)

Laundry room



Where the magic happens

Messy sewing corner- we had room for it! just barely...

That's about it! I finally got back to some sewing this weekend. I made two aprons, so pics to come of those soon!