on cats, pumpkins, and all that autumn goodness.

Cat sweater (self-drafted) fabric similar cat sweaters here here // similar pattern //leggings self-drafted but similar pattern here // b&w stripe fabric
Have you guys seen that cat sweater shirt that was floating around pinterest a while back? And did you, like me, say "cute!" pin it, then promptly forget about it? As we do with so many pinterest finds? 

Well I was scrolling through my board recently (you know, because I psych myself out into thinking I have time to scroll through my girl clothes inspiration board with 6 children running around) and I saw that sweater, clicked on the Gap link, and it was sold out. But let's be honest, I was never going to buy it anyway. I thought, "By cracky. I will make that thing." So here's a quick list and how-to so that you can make one yourself! 

I've linked to everything throughout the post and if you're not a DIY-er I linked to some similar styles above. I used a raglan sweater of Ezra's to make a pattern and I used some gray sweater fabric to recreate the look. But if you don't sew, any shirt will do.

I googled a cat silhouette image that I liked and cut it on some freezer paper using my new Silhouette (because Jonathon bought me a cameo for my b.day! What?!?!?!) If you don't have a cutting machine, don't hate me, because this cat silhouette would be easy cheese to cut out with an exact-o. I promise. This is coming from a gal who has spent 5 years exacto-ing without a cutting machine.
I ironed the freezer paper cat stencil onto the raglan, busted out my favorite black fabric paint and finished in less than five minutes. Once it was dry, I sealed the paint with an iron according to paint instructions. 
And then I had one tickled four-year-old. 
Madelyn is my animal loving girl and this is probably the closest we'll ever get to having a cat, so she embraced her inner cat here. 
When we went to take pictures, I realized how fast this fall is going by. I feel a bit like I'm missing out on it this year. I've had a series of leg surgeries each week starting October 1st so between those, follow up appointments, and making sure my children stay alive, I haven't really gone outside much.
But when we do go outside, you find us here. Lovingly holding a pumpkin, trying to soak up every last bit of autumn before it blows by. 
Because this season is worth doing a jig for. :) Happy DIY-ing friends!


Star Valley

We took a special trip to Star Valley Wyoming to see the beautiful little LDS Temple that was just built there. If you're not familiar with my religion, here's a brief explanation of what temples are.

We decided to leave the twins and Sophia with Grandma so that we could show our kids the inside of a place that means a lot to us personally. It was beautiful and fun and included wagon rides + getting to hang out with our children who aren't in diapers. What?? Plus the drive was gorgeous. Autumn definitely wins the prettiest season award, at least around here.

I had a small, little window of time the day before and I thought "What could I whip up in less than an hour?" And of course, the Polly Peasant dress from Sew Much Ado was the answer. Truly one of the most simple patterns I've ever tried. It took less then an hour with my kids running around. The results were so satisfying too. This makes an adorable blouse, dress, even nightgown.  It also has a super cute scallop option which I'm excited to try.
I used the size recommendations and sewed a 5T and I managed to use only one yard of fabric.  
I added a little tie at the waist because Lila is just so tiny and I wanted to define a waistline on her tiny body, but the dress is cute either way.  
Lila was majority tired by the time I snapped these pics, so don't mind the yawn. ;)


All that glitters

Mori Dress (modified) // bodice fabric // skirt fabric (similar)
4 years ago, this girl was in my belly. What a weird sentence to type, but I'm feeling nostalgic so let's go with it and take a walk down memory lane. 
We'd just moved to a new town only 20 miles away from our old town, but man it felt farther. I was so terribly lonely. Jonathon traveled for work back then and he was gone almost the entire month of September. So I tried to navigate that little town and figure out something to do with my large belly + two kids. 
And then, on a brisk October day, came Madelyn. She was beautiful, perfect, and exactly what I'd always pictured what a little baby girl should look like. Then came the storm. A dark, heavy cloud that I'd never felt before. Granted, Madelyn was a little fussy and she didn't believe in sleep. Plus my hormones are always a little out of wack for a week or 2 after my other babies, but this time, I was just so sad. I felt so stretched thin with 3 kids. I didn't have enough hands. I didn't understand what was wrong with me. I felt like a horrible person. I had a beautiful baby, wonderful children, a kind, hard-working husband. What was wrong with me??? It wasn't until December and I was flipping out about something as small as where the star should go on the tree, that I realized something was wrong. This wasn't normal. Facing postpartum depression was tough, but thankfully, I worked though it and that sad, heaviness moved away. And I haven't ever had anything happen to me like that again. I mean, it's not like I don't have down days, but I've never felt that very heavy darkness on me for that long.  It was so real and although I don't pretend to understand what people with long term depression go through, I empathize.  That has to be so tough.  
After I went through it, I felt a renewed sense of love for my babies.  Especially Madelyn.  She's always given me a bit of a run for me money, but I like to think that she'll be worth it. 
 Everywhere Madelyn goes, she shines. When I thought up this dress hack, I knew it would make a perfect dress for Madelyn and for the current projectrunandplay challenge. Never mind that it's too short. I swear I measured. Sigh. It will make a perfect tunic.  :)

Hard times do pass. And sometimes, you get a perfect little curly haired angel in the bargain.
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