Saturday, 4 October 2014

Dance time

Tomorrow my baby girl has her end of year Calisthenics concert, and couldn't be more excited.  This will be her third time on stage this year with her team as they perform Folk, March, Rods and Exercises. She's been doing calisthenics since she was 2, so this is her fourth year but this has been the year that she has really started to pick it up, and it has been amazing to see her improve so much.
Backstage (March costume) 2011, 2yrs old

March 2012 (courtesy Kellies Pix), 3yrs old
 Miss M has very low muscle tone and was seeing a physio weekly for a while there to try and strengthen her core, develop balance and improve her coordination (there was also concern that she may have Developmental Coordination Disorder, but it looks like it may have just been her very different motor planning that she used to manage her low muscle tone).  However I just couldn't keep juggling work, school, calisthenics, swimming lessons, scouts for the boy (to help his social skills development), and his OT sessions and decided that the physio had to stop.  They told me that as long as she stayed in swimming and calisthenics they'd be happy to let her go, but review her again at the end of the year.  We have yet to have that review, but I think that she will be fine given her improvement this year.
Exercises 2012 - Madelyn on left (Courtesy Kellies Pix)
She is really loving her dancing this year, perhaps because it's finally "clicking" for her.  So as a bit of a reward for her efforts, I have let her enter into solo competitions again.  So now I am busily gathering tulle, designing, cutting and planning her solo costume, for the end of year concert marks the start of solo season. 

 While I sew her calisthenics costumes for the team items (there were 4 this year), they are always designed and precut for me, and I just have to work out how to put them together  - I get a photo, and the cut pieces with no labels or instructions, so it can be a bit frustrating at times.  But come solo time, I get to design the costume myself, based on the music her coach selects.  Tonight I am having fun with hot pink, black and polka dots to create a 50's rock'n'roll style costume.  Miss M is so excited she gets to wear pink (last year she was a bright yellow bigbird)!
Practicing her solo - 2013, 4yrs old

Friday, 3 October 2014

Blogtober - Day 2

Oh my, not doing well, day two and I am already running late with my post!  Well only if we look at it technically, I can get away with it if I tell you I haven't gone to bed yet, and it's still the 2nd in many parts of the world.

I'll keep it brief tonight (as I really should get my beauty sleep!), I was sidetracked by my new found love - smocking.  I have booked the kids in for a day of Minecraft Camp on Monday, and need a project to take with me as I don't feel comfortable leaving Master A there, especially since it's quite a way from home and he can get a bit overstimulated when he has a long stint of computer time.  Normally he's limited to an hour max, to avoid meltdowns but on Monday he is getting a whole day!  Since I finished off my quilt binding and got a bit bored with my knitting at the kids art classes this week, I decided I needed to have some smocking to mix up with the knitting through the day.

So Sally Stanley (the mother-in-law's pleater) is having a sleep over tonight.  After movie night with the kids, I prepped my fabric and pleated it, taking a bit longer this time as I had to work out how to shift the needles around and do half rows.  It was my first whole piece too and I found it dragged a lot more than the insert did - inserts are a breeze to pleat!   Then I spent hours trying to work out a smocking plate from a photograph of a gorgeous dress that inspired me.  Got there in the end, but too indecisive to pick a floss colour this late at night.  Tomorrow... although I really should get to those curtains and save this for Minecraft Camp! After roller-disco today we have bowling on the agenda tomorrow morning and then quiet time in the afternoon so a good block for curtain sewing.

Do you have a craft that suddenly has you hooked?  I can't imagine not having a smocking project to work on regularly now!

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Blogtober 2014 - Day 1

Ok, so I am going to mention right from the get go - I am not too good at these things.  Life tends to get in the way, or I aim to high and then feel I don't have enough interesting stuff to post but hey, I am up for the challenge!  And that is to blog every day in October.  I know there is probably a linky party somewhere and I'd love to join it if I can find it, but for now I am happy to party along on my own.

So today my topic is...

What's hot right now?!

In the world of my sewing desk that is.

Well I am on holidays right now, and amongst kid activities while I am home with them (a rare opportunity due to plant shutdown during school holidays) I am also trying to stock up Miss M's summer wardrobe.  Master A hasn't really grown a lot this year (nothing new) while his sister seems to be on an endless growth spurt.  As the weather has warmed up over the last week or two, clothes from last summer are slowly meeting daylight again, but also having a tough time squeezing over her.  So my big goal this holidays is to sew as much as I can for her while I have a little extra time.

The next priority is a new pair of sheer curtains for her room.  You see her room has the most glorious morning aspect, with sunlight streaming through welcoming the cats.  Lotta has always loved that front window ledge, especially first thing in the morning (I swear she bolts there as soon as she hears me open the sunouts).  I think in her constant leaping on and off the window ledge she may have been the one who caused a small tear in each curtain.  But then along came a crazy playful ragdoll kitten, fondly known as Marvin, who took great pleasure in taking a little tear and making it huge.  In fact we now have about 50cm torn from the bottom of one curtain, almost halfway across!  The man at the curtain fabric shop told me they love pets - they give them a lot of business! (I still haven't replaced the curtain in the family room that the English Mastiff, Lewis enjoyed for breakfast one morning - but that one isn't seen from the street!)  So alas I have some boring sewing ahead of me, thanks to said furballs and the fabric arrived today.  No doubt I will have a nagging voice in my ear from the man of the house if he catches me sewing something other than curtains until they are done.

And finally, some cuteness to look forward to - Miss M pulled out all her Australian Girl Doll clothes today and took stock, telling me all the things her Emily needs to get through the summer. Big A told me we have too many cupboards full of fabric too, and when I told him most of it is leftovers that are too small to make things with unless I buy stuff to go with it, he suggested the unthinkable (throwing it out!).  Doll clothes will help dig a dent in that stash. 

I should make them in secret and save them for her birthday, but I don't think l I have the self control for that.  They are too stinkin' cute, and I have to give them to her as soon as the last stitch is stitched, to see her face light up and to beg her to try them on Emily right away!  Take these teeny little shorts - how can I hang onto them until December?!