There's so much inspiration on social media and it makes me want to do all the things. I want to sew more baby clothes. I want to sew more tshirts for Jude.
Did you guys see #MeMadeMay on Instagram? Inder's feed was epic. Her me mades + beer photos were so awesome. Carolyn, Cherie, and Jane also had such incredible self mades! I often found myself daydreaming about all of the things I'd love to sew for myself. I imagined how cool it'd be to have a mostly handmade wardrobe. Me Made May was so inspiring!
Then there are all the non-sewing things I'd love to do, too. Like canning and pickling. I'd love to learn Spanish well. I'd love to exercise more.
Last week I saw a quote on Instagram (or was it Pinterest? - I'm sorry, I love to give credit where credit is due but I just can't remember where I saw it). It went something like, "My kids are getting in the way of me being the kind of mom I want to be."
I laughed because well, it's funny, but also ironic. It's easy to start to feel that there are all these things we should be doing to be the best mom we can be or to be the best person we can be. It can feel like we're not doing enough. There's always more-more-more that we could be doing.
I read somewhere last week (sorry, can't remember where... again!) - "Don't should on yourself!" I love that.
Right now, in this season of my life, I have all my chicks in my nest. And I love this time. My kids are all at such great ages, such innocent ages. I don't take that for granted.
In this season, I connect with Jude by doing read alouds with him. We have long conversations. I listen to him play the piano. We go on walks together. And that trumps sewing his tshirts.
I'd love to make Hazel's baby clothes. I haven't done a lot of that... but have spent many, many hours rocking and nursing and cuddling her.
In these moments, there isn't really a tangible finished product like there is with sewing. And I like that finished product. The days that require the most of me, the ones where I am giving the most physically and emotionally to my children, are the days when it feels like I've gotten nothing done.
But I remind myself that these moments add up. Maybe it's even the small moments that matter most.
I know there will be another season in my life where I will have time to make my own clothes, to can produce, to quilt or learn a second language well. There will be a time where my days won't be filled to the brim, often without any margin. I do not wish these present days away. No, not at all. I love them so. But I like knowing this is out there, too.
While I wait, I love being inspired by so many of you who have so many diverse and incredible talents. I appreciate the inspiration and enjoy living vicariously through you. It brings me so much joy to see women living life so passionately.
And of course, no one person is doing all the things. We all have to prioritize the projects that bring us the most joy, the ones we find most fulfilling. Since I don't sew for Hazel often, I'm glad that when I do, I can make something I really, really love. Like this Limon top, a top and dress pattern by Charming Doodle.
I got this pattern as part of the Willow and Co pattern tour. I wanted to make both this top and the Antalya dress but knew I couldn't swing making both in the same week. Willow and Co was cool with me making it later and I was grateful.
I paired the top with these Brindille and Twig bloomers, which I also made here. This time I added an inch to the rise and went down a size in width to make them less bloomy. I was really happy with the outcome.
Here's a photo of the whole outfit since my baby is such a wiggle worm!
I finished the back like the O+S roller skate dress rather than adding a front placket. I didn't want to disrupt those front pintucks that I love so much. I also shortened the front pleat stitching to around 3 inches in length instead of 6.
The top is too big on Hazel right now but she is a little peanut! She is such a little love. Recently she started reaching out for me with her arms, she says, "uh-oh" and during these photos she started clapping for the first time! Yes, while I was taking the photos!
If Dan tries to take her from me when she's done nursing, she darts back in to nurse - a tactic all of my nursing babies have mastered!
Hazel is so loved by all of us and never lacks attention. When the kids go outside to play, she stands at the window and watches them. She bangs on the window and they wave back at her. It's pretty much the sweetest thing ever.
I sewed up this combo in double gauze from the Gnats Shop. Isn't Rachael from Imagine Gnats the best? I just love her. She's so down to earth and real. And her fabric is tops. I got this fabric during one of her sales at such a great price. I lined it with some of her voile which felt more gauzy than silky and gave this outfit the airy feel I was hoping for. Just right for summer!
Oh, how I just love those little pleats! And the bright indoor pictures! What kind of camera do you use?ReplyDelete
Thank you so much. I use a Canon 5D Mark iii. But I have had this camera for several years and my indoor photos are just starting to get to the place I would like them to be. Indoor photos are tough, especially if you have a dark house (like I do!). It's taken so much practice!Delete
Such a beautiful outfit in soft neutral colours.ReplyDelete
Yes, we certainly need a balance between sewing and time with our kids. Sewing doesn't beat cuddles.
Ack! Hazel and C do look like they could be siblings!! She's adorable - love the outfit. Agree that it's hard to find time to do all the things I want to do but love letting the beautiful weather force me outside at the moment. ;) Can you incorporate Spanish into your homeschool curriculum and learn it with them...???ReplyDelete
Right now Jude is learning Spanish using Duolingo and Indigo is learning French with Dan using Duolingo. Dan used to speak French conversationally when he lived in Cote d’ Ivoire so that’s something fun that they are doing together. I think I’ll be able to do that kind of thing with our littlest ones when they are older and I have less to do/no longer have little ones to chase after. Right now it’s hard to take the time to sit down for that long. Especially being I have to sit down with the big kids doing homeschool work during the school year. :)Delete
It's amazing, Rachel! Love your thoughts on motherhood and can't agree more. Well said!ReplyDelete
Hazel is growing up and looks so adorable in her little pin-tucked top! What a very classic and lovely piece!ReplyDelete
Just lately, I've been finding myself feeling regret and wondering things like, "is it too late for me to learn to play piano? why didn't I practice when I was a kid?" I'm 38 and it feels like there are so many things I want to do with my life, my curiosity and desire to learn is still as insatiable as it was when I was a kid, but I am starting to realize I will never get to some of these things. It's discouraging! I shared this with my dear friend and colleague who is 15 years older than me and she said "Oh, that's your age. At my age, I see so much possibility. I will retire in a few years and have so much time, it feels very different, a new beginning." That was encouraging. Right now, with small children, we are in the thick of it, and many things and experiences seem out of reach, but as with other aspects of parenting, nothing stays the same way for long, and it's good to remember that things may feel pretty different in a year or two or ten. In the meantime, breathe in those sweet baby cheeks, because that is an ephemeral pleasure.
P.S. Thanks for the shout-out! It's funny, I feel like I don't sew for myself all that much (although I want to do more) but I had more pieces than I realized! Like so many things, you start out doing one or two things, but over a couple years, it adds up. Unlike my kids, I can still wear things I made myself a couple years ago (by and large, anyway), so my Me Mades last better than the things I sew for the kiddos.Delete
I so relate to all of this. Lately I've been frustrated with lack of accomplishment in basically all areas of life and maybe thinking I need less areas of life to work on. Lol. Sewing has fallen to the back burner and feels like a chore when I have to shoo and yell at my kids to let me work,on it. Also I LOVE THIS OUTFIT. It's perfect. And my nursing babies have sly tactics.ReplyDelete
I quickly copied down the saying you shared, about not "shoulding ourselves". Social media is fabulous, but so overwhelming sometimes. It can be really inspiring or rather disheartening to see all the beauty I'm not making a point to share, or the recipes I'm not duplicating, or the sewing projects I'm not creating, and I totally hear you on the Spanish. Thanks for the reminder about relishing what I am accomplishing with my little girl, which might only be reading a stack of library books. Not a new summer dress. Time and memories will hopefully outlast my sewing abilities.ReplyDelete
SO cute! Hazel is adorable and I love the outfit you made!ReplyDelete
I love the outfit and you are so very right about motherhood. Just when you have all the people to sew and make for is when you are the busiest. Here's hoping for lots of grandkids so I can sew and enjoy them too. :-)ReplyDelete
Adore this sweet outfit and post Rachel. Thanks for sharing.ReplyDelete
It's the social media's fault. We're getting overwhelmed by pretty pictures of pretty lives and pretty everythings. I know that this is not those people's "real lives", if you know what I mean. I can see through that. The question is: can everyone else?ReplyDelete
I adore that top on Hazel, its color matches her so well! ❤️
What a gorgeous little blouse. I can hardly imagine the pattern without your changes, they seem like such perfect adjustments. I quite definitely need my time out in order to be a bearable mum let alone a good one. A language class one night a week and a Sunday morning bike ride is just enough to keep me civilised. I'm hoping the kids find me nicer and more interesting for being occasionally absent. I know what you mean about "nothing done" days, but gee with that many kids in the house it's never nothing done, surely?!ReplyDelete
Hazel is just the cutest little rooster baby!!
Those pleats! What a great outfit! I found Me Made May to be really inspiring this year, as well. I recently did a huge closet purge and since I didn't have all that many clothes to start with, I have few summery things left. So maybe I'll try to sew a couple summery tops. I like the reminder from Inder above that just making a few things a year will add up!ReplyDelete
This might be the absolute cutest thing I have ever seen!ReplyDelete
Thanks for joining our tour!
Love the top, I might be able to handle that! I can totally relate to not having the time to do all I want to do. I would love to learn how to paint, how to play the cello, to write fiction more, teach more classes, sew my kids wardrobes, etc...There is not enough time in the day (or night). I'm looking forward to reading more about your homeschooling. I'm especially interested in learning how you handle your math curriculum. Do you supplement with Singapore Math?ReplyDelete
I keep reading your posts and thinking 'Yes, that is me too'ReplyDelete
Cuddle your sweet children, they are a blessing and you enjoy them!
I really love this little outfit! I felt like such a sewing mum failure because I didn't make any baby clothes for Lucy. Then I remember I was still a beginner sewer and that I had three littles very close together. You're right, we can't do it all, but I'd rather focus on doing a few things well. Those little moments with your kids add up to a lot, and that's what they (and you) will remember!ReplyDelete