Vanilla Check-In

I’ve been letting my vanilla sit for just over a month.


This is what it looked like the day I started the batch.






I give it a shake or a swirl ever couple of days and it is coming right along.


This is what it looks like now.


It’s really starting to turn a lovely color.  It definitely needs more time before it can be used.  It still smells heavily of alcohol.  This will subside as it sits.

I’m so looking forward to being able to use the extract in a couple of months.


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Raspberries Canes and a Box of Rocks

Raspberry Canes

Last fall my husband’s aunt gave me three golden raspberry canes for my garden.


I wasn’t sure if they were going to survive the transplant and our wild winter. One of the plants had it worse off and I did loose half of that cane, but they all started leafing outbeautifully!




And look! Babies!



When I received the canes I was heavily pregnant and wasn’t up to too much garden work. So I made a rough bed for them, planted, gave them plenty of water and called it good. After Etienne was born, my mom was visiting and she helped me get a covering of hay on them to protect them from the forthcoming snow.

Spring has finally sprung in the Pacific Northwest and Gardening is in full swing at my house, so I started thinking about the sad little raspberry bed that needed some TLC.


Box of Rocks

I studied Geology for some time and we took many field trips. Over the years I amassed quite a collection of rocks. Being military we move a lot, and movers are less than amused when they find out you have several hundred pounds of rocks. Well, the box never got unpacked when we moved from Kentucky to Washington nearly 2 years ago and they’ve been sitting in the garage.  I decided to put them in the garden so we could enjoy them.

Bennett helped me unpack all the wrapped rocks, one by one.  It was like Christmas for him.  These are some of his favorites.


Raspberries meet Rocks

I weeded and widened the raspberry bed, fed them some organic compost, and lined the bed with my rock trove.  I also put a spare bit of wire fencing up so that when the canes are heavy with fruit I can tie them up for support. I still need to secure the bottom of the fence to the posts with wire, but that can wait for another day.

I’m quite excited about our new garden addition.  Bennett loves raspberries, and these are an ever-bearing variety, so we should have a nice crop of berries in the summer and fall. :)   I’m also happy that my rocks have a new home.  I can see them daily and I can tell Bennett about them and all the different places that they’ve come from.

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More Chalkboard Mats

In February I made small chalkboard mats for a busy bag swap.  They were so well received, that I thought I’d make them for my March group too.


I just love this Henry Alexander Zoo fabric.  I’ve used it quite a few times before, this was left over from making Doggie’s sleeping bag at Christmas.





I had another mama ask about making bigger ones in the penguin fabric but I was out.  I was lucky to find more of that fabric at JoAnn’s!  I did some size tweaking and made some custom chalkboard mats for her. :)


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Felt Chocolate Bunnies

I didn’t end up making the felt eggs for my March felt food swap, but I did make chocolate bunnies!

I made 8 total.  Five were for my felt food swaps, 1 for Bennett’s Easter basket, and 2 extras.

They are made from Eco-fi felt, which is made from recycled plastic bottles!




It took me a bit, but after some trial and error, I remembered how to tie straight bows!

I tacked the bows down to themselves so they won’t untie.




Since I have 2 extras, I’ve listed them in my Etsy shop. :)



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Regrowing Celery and Bok Choy

I while back I’d seen on Pinterest that you can regrow celery from the bottom of the stalk.  I had some celery a couple of weeks ago to make sausage casserole, so I thought I’d try regrowing it.



The celery on the left is about 3 weeks of growth!  We haven’t has much sun, but I’m hoping that once I can get it in the ground that it will take of.  The celery on the right is about a week of growth.

In the middle is baby bok choy that’s been in about a week and a half.  In thinking that it would root as well, I did a little searching and found that 17 Apart had a post about it.

I’m excited to be adding some new edibles to the garden!  I know the bok choy won’t last out winter here, but I’m hopeful for the celery.

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Soft Rainbow Colors Book

I have another baby busy bag exchange this month.  I didn’t want to do the same thing as last month, the crinkle squares.  I wanted to make something I haven’t exchanged yet to add some variety.

I’d been stumped about what to make and it’s getting close to the deadline, so I just started pulling out fabrics to see what struck me.  I found that I had some St. Jude fabric left from making Bennett’s toiletries bag.  It’s really cute, bight, and perfect for new project inspiration.  I began looking through my color fabric bins for fabrics to match.

I still didn’t have a clear vision until I unknowingly had a bright rainbow of colors laid out on my cutting table. It all came together with a bit of scrap batting as a soft rainbow colors book.

There are lots of different patterns, splotches, polka dots, leaves, vines, flowers and shades for lots of learning for little minds.

I added a length of grosgrain ribbon to the front and back panels to made a sort of handle, perfect for little hands to tote to the car or around the house.

A fun game to play with a toddler learning colors would be to find the page that matches something on the cover. For example: find the color page that matches the color of the giraffe.  The cover can also have used for simple counting; how many green things, how many fish.. etc.


The pages are in color order, pink, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.  The cover is the multi colored St. Jude fabric.

I’m just about finished with the other books and will mail them out this week. :)

Best part, everything came from my stash of fabric! Yeah more stash busting!

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More Sashiko Rabbits

Well, it took me well over a month to finish this sashiko panel, but it’s done! Lots of other things needed doing… other projects, school exams, and busy bags. :)  This is a long term project anyway.

So here are the results.

The rabbits are simple with a geometric rectangle pattern. I made this one with blue thread, the first rabbit was made with red.





I love how the rabbits are all a little different from each other.  




Next up is a Dragonfly pattern!  I’m doing it in purple!  So I think I’ve settled on red, blue, and purple for the colors for Etienne’s quilt. :)


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