Friday, January 29, 2016

Christmas 2015

I thought it might be better to tackle our entire Christmas season in one post.... we just had too much going on!

One of the highlights of the Holidays was Sydney's first elementary school concert. They organized all of the kindergarten students into one big group so that they could have their own concert on a special Friday afternoon. The sweetness was seriously overwhelming. 90 tiny faces singing French and English songs and doing matching dance moves. It was amazing. Sydney did great and Henry was sooooo excited to watch his sister. He kept yelling out "Hi Sydney!" I am working on uploading the video of the concert for your viewing pleasure, but for now, here are a few cute photos.

That same weekend we attended the annual ATCO kids Christmas party. It is a highlight every year and we always go into it expecting a completely jam packed afternoon. 

For the second year in a row we managed to find the time to head down to the Festival of Trees. We love going to check out all of the beautiful trees and the fun activities. The kids always have a great time decorating cookies, visiting the mini hospital and buying gifts for us in the kids only Christmas workshop. My favourite tree this year was an incredible modern origami tree that I kind of want to recreate for next year. We will see!

Our Holiday season really kicked off with our annual friends Christmas dinner. I didn't take many pictures this year during the festivities, but I did before. I am constantly trying to up my game on the table setting for our dinners. I love to try to create a feeling and a beautiful environment. I think I may have accomplished that this year. 

One of our annual traditions is to go on a drive down Candy Cane Lane and some of the nicer neighborhoods to look at the Christmas lights. We always pick up hot chocolate from Starbucks for all of us and enjoy the time together. We try to finish up our tour at the Legislature where we can go inside to listen to whoever is performing that night. This year is was a Polish chior. 

Then came Christmas morning! My dad came into town to stay with us and I could not have been more thankful. Dave worked the days leading up to Christmas morning and it was so nice to have some adult company. We brought all of the gifts out after the kids went to bed on Christmas Eve so that when Dave came home from night shift the next morning at 6am he wouldn't have to do anything. 

I woke up early and got breakfast going before Jim and Joan showed up to get everything going. The food was delicious and the kids had the best reactions to seeing the Christmas trees and the stockings for the first time. We also told the kids about the baby on Christmas morning. We put together a little sign announcing that there would be three of them and we also bought another chair for their little kids table to make room for one more. I managed to borrow a doppler from a friend to show them the heartbeat as well. It was a really special moment and we managed to get some good video of the entire thing as well. 

I put on the turkey dinner on Christmas day so we were able to spend the day lazing around in our pajamas and playing with new toys. In the end it was a great Christmas season. It is only getting better as the kids get older. 

Mrs. E

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Etsy ~ Made In Canada Show

In early October I had the opportunity to take part in my first market. 

I had applied for the Etsy Made in Canada show months earlier but had been wait listed. Two weeks before the show I was told they had a cancellation and they wanted me to attend. How could I turn it down!? Of course, the short time frame for preparations sent me into a bit of a panic mode.... but I managed to get it done!

Step one was to come up with some booth signage. I knew that I wanted to create a barn quilt to be used as my sign. Barn quilts are a massive part of rural Americana and have a great vintage look to them. I packed up the kids and we headed down to Lowes. While we were there picking up a nice piece of wood for the sign I also had them cut me some doweling and two by fours to create a quilt ladder. The kids were unimpressed with how loud the saw was. $20 later and we had everything we needed. 

I created the barn quilt by drawing out one of my favorite block patterns using one of my quilting rulers. It was easy to do because it is one block I use often for baby quilts. Using painter tape, I taped off the first sections I planned on painting. I wanted the lines to be nice and crisp. Using acrylic paint, I painted on a thin layer of color so that you could still see the wood grain through the color. I love the effect that it has. I blew up my logo in word, printed it off and used pencil to carbon copy it onto the painted board. Once that was done, I used silver paint sharpies to fill it in. I think it turned out pretty great!

The next step was to work on my booth layout. This was easily the hardest part of the pre-show prep. I could not figure out how to lay everything out so that is was attractive and easy to see. Eventually I decided that I really couldn't have a traditional table set up and started to get creative with a few items around the house. In the end I think that the booth looked cute and professional. Thank goodness we have a lot of vintage themed furniture in our home!

At the last minute I decided that I needed to add in some less expensive items that people could just grab as a small gift for friends. I thought that these small 15" lovies would be the perfect solution. Easy to make and at at low price point that people would be ok with. 

The studio was a MESS during the prep.

In the end I think it was a pretty good experience for my first show. My friend Ronda came to help me out and we made a bit of profit which is awesome! Now I want to focus on bigger and better shows. I am hoping to get into a few of the larger markets in 2016. Nothing like taking on some lofty goals with a new baby on the way!

Mrs. E