Sweet Pea's Groceries, Updates

The last bits of craftiness



beach blankets

I’m thrilled to report that the light-weight, quilted beach blankets (bed covers, tablecloths, tapestries, picnic blankets, couch/chair covers, whatever you wish…) are finished and being shipped off to OC Local Mojo with the rest of the goodies today. Pictures do not do them justice. They were so much fun to make and I wanted to keep them all, however, I have enough quilts as it is so I was able to talk myself out of hoarding them.

Here’s the final result of my flaxseed, rice, lavender herb and lavender essential oil hot/cold pack making jam session:

hot/cold packs

hot/cold packs
Eye pillows

For both projects, I used clothes purchased from the Salvation Army on half price day. I literally walked out of that store with enough fabric to make the hot/cold packs, all of the blankets and a whole heck of a lot more for under $30. When I got home, I cut the seams out of the clothes (which I saved for other projects) and used the material like you would if you had just bought it off the bolt at the store. The hot/cold packs are made with from two super soft pairs of pajama bottoms. Plus, I salvaged some velcro from a few of the garments and made the packs refillable for when they need an aromatherapy refresher.

That’s all of my creations for a while. Now it’s on to packing!

Making Crafty Magic

Making Crafty Magic

I’ve been on a creation kick lately and I thought I’d share with you some of the things that I’ve made, just for crafts and giggles.

craft projects
From top left working clockwise: 1. I finally finished my double-sided t-shirt quilt. It took me years to complete but I love the final result. 2. A bag and wallet made from t-shirt scraps. I’m still debating on whether I should sell them or keep them. 3. These were a custom pair of earrings for a friend’s mother. They came out really sweet. I forgot how gratifying making jewelry can be. 4. My knit chair cozies were made from a thrifted pocket scarf that was previously owned by a giant. You could tell it was handmade but someone got rid of it because it was just enormous. I cut the scarf in half and now I have a place to put all of my sewing items when they’re not in use. Score.
skull quilt
I’ve had an obsession with skulls for as long as I can remember (me and every other twelve-year-old girl). This has led to having an overabundance of skull clothing. Most items were worn out or Petunia has baby-bit them to shreds. (Baby Bites=when Petunia nibbles at clothing to the point of creating holes.) At first I was going to make a wrap skirt out of them but then just decided that my butt-ugly, yet comfy chair needed a proper cover. I also have an old comforter that I refuse to get rid of for sentimental reasons so I used that for the backing and also to make cushions out of. Voila!
Soap ingredients and fabric labels
Since December was great for sales, I made enough money to reinvest in kicking things up a notch or two. I designed some awesome fabric labels through Spoonflower, purchased a load of natural soap colorants and exfoliants, reordered lotka seed paper, more soap labels are on their way, sodium and potassium hydroxide just arrived, bulk oils are coming and I have a whole world of new soap gadgets to put to good use. I just need to order shipping envelopes and I should be set for most of 2014. That’s a fantabulous feeling!

Travel, yellowstone national park

Yellowstone: June 14th, 2013


Old Faithful (5)
Old Faithful Visitors Center
Old Faithful (2)
The Old Faithful Inn
Old Faithful (3)
The Old Faithful Inn
Old Faithful (4)
Old Faithful just ending.
Old Faithful (6)
Old Faithful ending

Old Faithful (7)Old Faithful (21)Old Faithful (17)Old Faithful (18)Old Faithful (16)Old Faithful (15)Old FaithfulOld Faithful (20)Old Faithful (24)Old Faithful (26)Old Faithful (23)

It’s been another glorious day here in Smellystone (don’t worry, it’s a good smelly). Strange dreams are still afoot but I‘m taking it in stride. Work uneventfully started at 8 am with a review of the field season schedule and then a trip to Indian Pond. Deb was disappointed with the water level and loss of amphibian habitat happening in the pond. In 2006, I remember it being far more expansive and Deb told me it was because 06 was a decent year for water. It seems like droughts are becoming an increasing threat to this ecosystem. Thus, we may find a lot of dry wetlands this year. There’s nothing more disappointing than a 5 mile off-trail hike over mature, burnt forest with thick regrowth only to find your once bountiful wetland has become a dried up puddle. Hopefully the amphibians can compensate for this. We finished for the day at 10 am and then the Park was my oyster. I read and relaxed for several hours and then headed to West Thumb and Old Faithful, stopping along the lake shore, the continental divide and Kepler Cascade along the way. I took way more photos than necessary but that’s better than none at all. It’s nice to be reunited with my digital camera. I’m having to learn its tricks all over again. I’m in love with the panorama function so be ready for panoramas galore. The trip was just heavenly, apart from the weather. It was a brisk 35 degrees, cloudy with intermittent freezing rain and hail. I persevered because bad weather is the best time to see the major landmarks–it keeps the hoards of tourists at bay. I managed to miss Old Faithful go off twice while I was there. The second time I climbed to the overlook for a better view of her but I grew impatient so I figured I would walk around for a bit. I ended up in this dark forested area without my bear spray or SPOT device to call for help. I began to whistle thinking it would scare off any bears but then I remembered from bear training that whistles sound like dying animals to a bear. So I began to worry that my whistling combined with the huckleberry lotion I tried on in the gift shop just minutes before would not work in my favor. I retreated and halfway through my backtrack I heard the oohing and ahhing of the crowd witnessing Old Faithful do her thing. Douh! It sounded delightful.

Old Faithful (11)
Old Faithful Overlook
Old Faithful (12)
Old Faithful Overlook

Old Faithful (10)

Old Faithful (8)Old Faithful (9)If you have the chance, visit the Old Faithful Visitors Center. They have a fantastic little museum there. I was completely enthralled with their underwater footage of Yellowstone Lake. Their gift shop is tip-top as well. I managed to purchase these quilting blocks from the store:

DSCF2272 Now I can’t wait to get home and make something! Okay… I can wait.


Memory Quilt

This t-shirt quilt took me 6 months to make and I was soooo glad to finally present it to its rightful owner on Christmas morning. The quilt was a gift from my supervisor Reidin to her husband Danny. The first day I met her she sent me home with a box of Danny’s t-shirts and told me to make a quilt out of them. That was it. I was given no indication of what she wanted it to look like so it was up to me to design the entire thing. Telling from his shirts I knew that he was a NASCAR man so I went with checkered flag sashing and binding and I thought red flannel would be a nice touch (little did I know that red is his favorite color).  All this time he had assumed she threw out his favorite shirts but in reality I was cutting them up and making them into something new and different. They both agreed that there was a lot of my personality in the quilt with all the weird and random decorative stitches. I even hand-stitched some of it because I love the look and general idea of a hand-stitched quilt.  At some point, they want me to embroider my name in it because I totally forgot to do it. Duh, Jaime! Watching him unwrap his gift was a treat for me. He had memories for each and every shirt. And he kept turning flipping it over to inspect all of the little details of his life I hid in there. I made little patches and hid them in larger designs so new things continued to jump out at him. Later on Christmas day, Danny told Reidin that the quilt is his most favorite possession. That makes all the blood, sweat and tears worth it for me. However, it will be a long time before I make another double sided quilt. I don’t think people appreciate how much precise measuring and math goes into lining both sides up perfectly. It turned out great though. (Sorry about the blurry photos but you get the idea.)