Hang onto your hats, friends...I actually sewed something. I know, it's amazing. Behold:
wee tiny baby dress front
wee tiny baby dress back
cheap and easy pattern
Yesterday Daughter and I drove out to the nearest Super Mart de Wal, which is about 20-30 minutes away straight through farm country. It's a beautiful, calming drive for me, and it always amazes me that so much empty blank space exists so close to suburbia. I mean, we drove on a 65 mph highway through this gorgeous land, so it's not like it's untouched, but it's still a sight to see.
Anyway, we drove out there so I could get a few groceries and some other Walmart-y stuff I needed, and for the change of scenery. Plus I have to add that this particular Walmart is SO nice compared to every other one I've ever seen. It's actually clean and well-stocked and the people who work there are nice. Wha-? Weird. Well worth the long drive & wasted gas.
So we strolled through the craft section, which I cannot help but do, and stumbled upon the "Easy stitch 'n save" patterns by McCall's. These patterns are THE BEST. They cost something like $1.50 or maybe $2.00, and are for only one basic outfit, but they are extremely simple and fast to sew. My kind of project, bay-bee! Especially for Daughter. I'm not putting eleventy-billion hours of tedious sewing into a little cotton dress that will be chucked in the washing machine over and over again. The little dress above is from pattern # M5079, view A. It's made from about 1/2 or 2/3 yard of batik fabric I bought from the end of a bolt when I was working at my old job. The pattern only gives the amount of fabric needed for the dress, ruffled pants, and hat, so I'm guessing at how much I really used. The dress is self-lined (awesome!) which eliminates all but the most basic finishing. All I had to do was slip-stitch 3 seams closed. In fact, the most time-consuming part of this dress was the prep - pinning and cutting the pattern and pinning the dress and lining together. It was a breeze and I'll be making about a zillion more. Side note: there are supposed to be 2 buttons sewn on to hold the back closed, but I am apparently dumb and made the buttonholes about 1mm too small for the buttons I had picked out. So I'll be scrounging and/or shopping for two different buttons before I can declare the dress finished. Dur.
On a different front, thanks for the commiseration re: house issues. Hub and I keep hashing it out and trying to decide if we want to take out a small-ish home improvement loan to fix some stuff up or what. We'll be asking around for opinions and working through the decisions. Just 'cause we were into totally wasting gas yesterday, we went for a ride after dinner (in search of an ice cream stand) and ended up heading waaaaaaaayyyyy out along the lake shore (Erie) until we stumbled upon Evangola State Park. It's such a gorgeous place...I didn't have my camera but you can see pictures here if you want. It's one of those places where you can park and take advantage of everything from picnic areas to swingsets to basketball courts to the beach. We were going to walk around a little but the wind off the lake was very cold and we only had the umbrella stroller.
We drove back right along the lake and were fascinated by what we found. It turns out the park was only 11 miles from our house. As we drove we saw the most amazing lake houses - everything from gigantic mansions with ivy-covered iron gates and stone walls to little shacks built two and three deep. There were parks and several areas for beach access, and through the trees and houses you could always glimpse the lake. The last thing we stumbled upon was Frank Lloyd Wright's Graycliff, which is totally under our noses. (It was the summer home of the Darwin Martin family, whose winter home was also built by FLW and is located in the city of Buffalo.) We knew this was nearby, but never realized just how close.
What I am trying to say, I suppose, is that there is a lot of special beauty right here where we live, and even though our house gives us fits we should probably learn to enjoy what we have. No, there isn't a Target or Walmart very nearby, and I feel like I have to drive forever to get anywhere, but that's also part of what's cool about it.