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hanging around

I know it’s been pretty quiet around here lately.  I honestly miss being able to post and sew more.  I’ve got a few things to share today though….

Here’s a little sneak peek of proof that indeed I have been sewing:

I’ll be talking more about what’s in that picture next week, so you’ll just have to wait. :)

I’ve also been really into trying to simplify things as much as possible.  There were some pretty big life changes last fall.  For my whole family.  While it was really hard to swallow all of  it then (and still is), it seems like gradually those changes are actually working in our favor, bad things turning into good.  I’ve been trying to focus on the good things we have going.  This seems really what it’s all been about lately:

                                                                          Source: via Anna on Pinterest

I also stumbled over a couple of books at our library about intentional living.  Turns out one of the authors has a really cool blog, Simple Mom.

1} The Joy of Less by Francine Jay;  I just started reading through this one, it’s really amazing.  Even though I’m only a few chapters in, it seems to really make you understand what the benefits are of simplifying your life.  Watching what you bring into your house really made sense to me.  I always wondered how we ended up with so much junk, but as I’ve stepped back (and not made as many trips to Target) I’ve really been able to keep that from happening.  My major crime used to be buying stuff at the dollar spot!

 2} Organized Simplicity by  Tsh Oxenreider ; I’ve really been enjoying this book so far, it’s a lot common sense type things, but I love a couple things especially.  She has a ton of natural recipes for household products, they’re amazing, probably the kinds of things our grandmother’s used to use.  I also am really pumped about the 10 day sweep.  She guides you through each room and different ways to keep it organized and clean.  I think I love that most because I’m pretty easily distracted, so the list really helps.

Lastly (if you’re still reading that is), I’ve got a new pattern coming out soon.  Do you want to see some previews of it?  I’m hoping to wrap up the majority of the pattern this weekend.  Yay!

47 Responses to hanging around

  1. **nicke... 02.16.2012 at 10:40 am #

    ooohhh! new pattern anna! if you need any testers you let me know! 😉 can’t wait to see what cute little dresses or shirts you have been sewing for your cute little girls!

  2. Karen L R 02.16.2012 at 10:45 am #

    Another good book…
    Simply Imperfect, by Robyn Griggs Lawrence

  3. Amy Friend 02.16.2012 at 10:46 am #

    Yes, I do want to see!

  4. caralyn 02.16.2012 at 10:50 am #

    In my experience, big life changes can go one of two ways…and up or down, good or bad, the direction is dependent upon how you deal with it more than anything. If you let it, some difficult hurdles can become stepping stones.

    Hope all is well. Also? Bring on the new pattern! ~a random reader.

  5. Rachel Hauser 02.16.2012 at 10:57 am #

    Organized Simplicity is one I enjoyed about a year ago. Always good to take time to think through the daily stuff.

  6. Jeni 02.16.2012 at 11:05 am #

    Eeeek! Those clothes! I want a bunny shirt!

    So excited to see your new pattern! :)

  7. Emily 02.16.2012 at 11:18 am #

    I’ve been thinking of you often and hoping things were looking up for you and the girls! Glad to see you’ve been able to get some sewing it. :)

  8. Heidi 02.16.2012 at 11:23 am #

    Can’t wait to see your new pattern!

    Life changes are tough! Having a good attitude about it can make a huge difference though.

  9. chris 02.16.2012 at 11:25 am #

    I am glad you’ve got some sewing in…and a new pattern! I’m excited. So glad you’re finding blessings amid problems. ♥

  10. Heather 02.16.2012 at 11:27 am #

    OOOohhh… those books sound wonderful and i am more than happy to hear that you all are doing better!!

    Thinking about you friend!!
    x, H

  11. Mary on Lake Pulaski 02.16.2012 at 11:50 am #

    Yes, want to see new pattern!

  12. Care 02.16.2012 at 12:19 pm #

    Hi Anna,

    Good to hear from you! :o) I’ve been thinking about you and your family!

    Can’t wait to see your new pattern.


  13. {Leila}Where the Orchids Grow 02.16.2012 at 12:21 pm #

    All good things Anna!! I am looking forward to your new pattern :)

  14. Vanessa 02.16.2012 at 12:24 pm #

    Those tops look great…I recognize the little details :)

    I am in dire need of simplifying life. The clutter and running around like a mad woman are wearing me down. Will have to take a look at those books. Thanks for sharing.

  15. Flying Blind... 02.16.2012 at 12:25 pm #

    Oooh Bunny blouse!

  16. Lindsey R. :: LRstitched 02.16.2012 at 12:29 pm #

    Can’t wait to see your new patter, of course!

    I’m so glad things are working out for good for you and your family, I think about you and your girls often.

    I’m trying to decide if those are Tova’s hiding in that closet.

  17. Nancy Kindle 02.16.2012 at 12:31 pm #

    I am so happy you have a new pattern coming out. I have made several of yours and love them all. If you need a tester I would love to do that for you.

    Seweet Creations

  18. Kathie 02.16.2012 at 12:38 pm #

    Good to hear that things are getting better. I’ve just bought the books in a bid to get my family on board, thanks for the recommendation.

  19. Rebecca 02.16.2012 at 12:39 pm #

    Ooo, new pattern! I can’t wait! And thank you for the book recs. Sometimes I feel like our crazy home and life are beyond help, but I know we’d be more sane if things were simple and organized. I’ll have to look into those.

  20. TheeFireWife 02.16.2012 at 12:46 pm #

    I’ll check those out, they look awesome! Simple (for me) is definitely better!

  21. Nat 02.16.2012 at 1:00 pm #

    I just started reading Organized Simplicity, too! Am planning on jumping in as soon as I finish The Happiness Project, which is another excellent read. Can’t wait to see your new pattern!

  22. Maureen Cracknell Handmade 02.16.2012 at 1:10 pm #

    I can’t wait to the complete photo, they look so cute already!!

    I’m glad you are finding a new normal and seeing some positives in the situation. Sometimes you really have to dig for them, I know! Wishing you all the best!!! :)

  23. Emily 02.16.2012 at 2:05 pm #

    Can’t wait to see those dresses! The print and topstitching are gorgeous!! I totally need those books and less trips to Walmart/Target. Are you reading my mind?

  24. Katie Lewis 02.16.2012 at 2:12 pm #

    When our little family moved across the country last summer we decided to sell 99% of what we owned (so that we could just move in our car and not have to get a moving truck) and get a fresh start. It was hard (and really boring) to sort through every single piece of everything we owned, but the end result was so, so worth it. There’s something so gratifying and daily refreshing about only owning things you truly love (and use). I’m curious to look through those books you mentioned.

    As for whatever happened last fall, I’ve been thinking about you and wondering about that ever since you wrote that post. I hope all is going well and that things are getting better. You have been in my prayers.

    And I’m excited to see the new pattern!

  25. Liz @ LivingMySweetLife 02.16.2012 at 2:55 pm #

    I’m so happy to hear that things are going well for you ! I am oing to check out those books, I need to learn how to live more simply…

    I can’t wait to see your new pattern!!

  26. Kerry 02.16.2012 at 3:10 pm #

    The top/tunic/dress looks lovely. Being thankful: something it is hard to remember to do but essential x

  27. Tanya 02.16.2012 at 3:12 pm #

    Glad things are turning around for you, even if it’s just a matter of perception. Oh, and yes, preview please!

  28. Tara 02.16.2012 at 3:19 pm #

    This post really resonated with me. I often feel like things are spinning out of control with too much stuff, not enough structure and calm. A while ago I decided to STOP going to Target so often and coming home with a pile of shite from the dollar section as well. Lol. A book that I enjoyed, that is in the same vein as your thoughts, is called “Simplicity Parenting”. I’m going to see if my library carries either of these books. Of course reading them will be just one more thing on my list of things to do, that may or may not get done amid all the chaos. oh well…hahaha

  29. ♥Duff 02.16.2012 at 3:27 pm #

    congrats on keeping up with sewing while keeping up with life–that’s a trick!! You might like this blog ( he also has books)

  30. Poppyprint 02.16.2012 at 3:33 pm #

    Wonderful news. I am really excited to see your new pattern.

  31. Isisjem 02.16.2012 at 4:54 pm #

    Oh My that first picture is gorgeous. I would love to be able whip up stuff like this – And no I don’t want to see any sneak peeks of your new pattern. No definitely not. 😉

    I’m not very good at fibbing am I?

  32. Katy Cameron 02.16.2012 at 5:00 pm #

    A simple life sounds perfect! Looking forward to seeing your new pattern :o)

  33. Carolyn 02.16.2012 at 5:45 pm #

    I can’t wait to see what you’ve been working on…new garments, new patterns….yay!

  34. gail 02.16.2012 at 5:54 pm #

    very excited about that new pattern of yours!! and i always love a simplicity reminder. thanks for that!

  35. Megilon 02.16.2012 at 6:47 pm #

    I can’t wait for a new pattern!

    Another book that’s good is Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui by Karen Kingston. It is a great book for letting go of things particularly in the case of major life changes.

  36. Cindy 02.16.2012 at 6:55 pm #

    So glad to hear that you’re doing good and staying positive!:) Hang in there, Anna- and yes, excited to see your new pattern!!:)

  37. The Comeaux Family 02.16.2012 at 7:24 pm #

    will really look forward to your new pattern. let’s have a preview!

  38. Irina 02.16.2012 at 7:33 pm #

    I’m happy to hear that things are getting better. We are stronger than we think!
    I can’t wait to see what you’ve been up to! those books look good, I wish the days were longer so I could have more time to read and do more things!

  39. Tiphaine 02.16.2012 at 7:49 pm #

    Bring it on baby !! meaning the new pattern…
    I a’ll be thinking of you very often, I hope things are becoming quieter….and just Hi from here. Do take care of yourself.

  40. Amanda 02.17.2012 at 12:22 am #

    I am happy things are going well for and I look forward to reading your posts even though I may not comment all the time. :). And yes! Preview of the new pattern!

  41. kristin 02.17.2012 at 12:47 am #

    oo oo oo, i think i know what that preview is – i made one too! can’t wait for your new pattern, and thanks for the reminder on living simply. it’s something i try to do but it’s so much easier to just keep accumulating stuff…

  42. Krista 02.17.2012 at 1:22 pm #

    1, can’t wait to see those tops! 2, have been thinking of you since you made that post in the fall and am glad to hear things are turning around for you and your family. 3, both of those books are going onto my library list (I am also a sucker for the Target $1 bins), and 4, yes, let’s see the pattern!

  43. erin 02.17.2012 at 6:58 pm #

    can’t wait to see what you’re up too!! i am also in the process of simplifying my home/life! must say it feels pretty darn good. :)

  44. gret 02.17.2012 at 7:12 pm #

    That sewing looks stunning, as always! And those books look fantastic too. I’m really into simplifying at the moment as well. Can’t wait to see your new pattern – give me a yell if you need a hand with testing etc, but no pressure. x

  45. Jennadesigns 02.18.2012 at 11:23 pm #

    So happy for you and your family Anna! I am a big believer in simplicity making life easier and more fulfilling. I can’t wait to see what you’ve been making for your girls. And I know your new pattern will rock! I miss your posts!

  46. Stacey 02.19.2012 at 8:08 pm #

    We are trying to live a very simple life, paring down “things”. It’s very awakening to do so. I blog at ( if you would like to drop by. Looking forward to your new pattern. : )

  47. kait. 02.29.2012 at 8:10 pm #

    I’m going through some big life changes right now, too and I understand the difficulty and how blogging tends to fall by the wayside. Your struggles will be in my prayers and I can’t wait to see what clothing you’ve been sewing! I’ve been making a lot of clothes lately; it’s nice to feel pretty, especially in hand-crafted things.

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