「Handmade」interactive felt-book for our toddler

Usually I post about things I make, but this time I have to share the neat little present my mother handmade for her grand daughter (our little girl).  It’s an interactive felt-book to play with and ‘rip out’ different things on each page.

For a closer look on each ‘page’ click “continue reading” below:

Continue reading “「Handmade」interactive felt-book for our toddler”

Smash*Book「Pretty Pink」Update #1

Recently I was bitten by the ‘smash book bug’ 🙂
I’ve seen so many people make or start one, it seems to be a real hype. And while I’m not one to just join any hype for the sake of it, the fact that you get to be creative and can turn a smash book-base into your very own uniquely styled piece intruiged me very much.

I chose to buy a Smash*Book by K&Company (they have many different ones): it’s the ‘Pretty Pink’ version!  I want to share some pictures of what I’ve done with my Smash Book so far – getting into my creative flow if you will.

FRONT COVER
Each version of the K&Company Smash Books comes in a differently coloured binding and with a different front cover pattern. This version had flowers and I chose to make them *POP* a little more by simply colouring them the way I liked.

Continue reading “Smash*Book「Pretty Pink」Update #1”

Christmas Presents for our Baby Girl

Our little girl is a little bit over 5 months when it’s Christmas this year, so she won’t understand the concept of this festive occasion yet. The same goes for giving or receiving presents. However, we still decided to give her something, because she loves everything that rustles….like wrapping paper (in which some of the presents will be wrapped). And she is fascinated by our christmas tree and the lights.

I want to state that for us, Christmas is not an event of LOADS of presents, each super expensive and huge in itself…in our family it is more about cozy memories with the Christmas tree and having mabye one or two new toys to play with right away.

These are the presents we are giving to our girl this year:
1. ‘slumbertoes’ baby shoes – come in various sizes, and we bought 6-12 months. They are handmade with quality leather and come in 9 different designs. We picked the purple ones with butterflies on them (they don’t have an owl design…) They are basically perfect for crawling and last until baby can walk. Thus, the material is really soft and allows baby feet to flex and move around with ease. Personally I really like how they are just slip on shoes with an elastic band to gently hold the ankle of those little feet.

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2. A roly-poly-mushroom ^^ in a very cute and colourful design. It’s all plushy fabric on the outside and has a little bell inside that makes a soft (bearable for parental ears) noise when moving it. I think our daughter will love all over it 🙂

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3. MULA – the bead roller coster from IKEA – this was actually not planned as a Christmas gift. Originally we only had the roly-poly-mushroom as a playable present to give to her, but then my husband went out to IKEA to only buy some screws or so and he came back with this & a broad smile on his face. Our girl does enjoy shoving the beads on her little play-gym back and forth, and entertains herself for quite some time. So we do think she will like moving the beads on the spiral and the other 2 thingies.

4. This is the handmade present. I’m a crafter at heart so I couldn’t help but making her one present myself. I bought some colourful owl fabric and made her a little quilt
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Click here or on the picture to see the whole quilt and more/better close up pictures of it!!

All together our baby girl is getting 4 presents (which I already consider a lot!) out of which “only” 2 are playable items though. We can’t wait for December 24th to see how her reaction is to the toys and new things she finds under the tree.

 

「handmade」Owl Quilt – Christmas present

Our little girl will get only a few presents for Christmas which I will show all together in another blog post sometime. This one is about the handmade present I sewed together for her over the span of 2 days (could probably be done within a day if there are only few interruptions 😉 )

I wanted to make a little quilt and ordered really cute & colourful owl fabric as well as volume fleece and green/white dotted fabric for the back and border 🙂 DSCN2626

The owls are so colourful and cheery, they go well with the over all owl-themed room for our baby girl. I didn’t want to quilt right through the owls though, so I sews around each one and created this sort of honeycomb pattern.

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I really like the grass green fabric with white dots on the back as it goes well with the light and bright colours of the owls. In the following picture you can see a close up of the border. I sewed 2 lines close together to make sure it’s attached really well.

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And here is a closer look on the different owls pictured on the front of the quilt – aren’t they just so so cute?!!

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Aside from this handmade present she will get two little toy-presents to play with right away and one ‘wearable’ present. I do love our tree with the first special snowflake bauble and how we can make our first cozy Christmas memories as a family this year.

handmade cloth wipes make me smile :)

Die Deutsche Version dieses Blogeintrags ist HIER zu finden.

Cute, colourful, really handy and sooo soft  – that’s what comes to mind when I think of our cloth wipes !
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These multipurpose cloth wipes are handmade (in the USA) by Lover of Life Designs, a working-at-home mother. They are made of double-sided 100% flannel cotton which feels so very soft, even after several rounds in the washing machine. They come in packs of 2 diferent sizes (large small) here at Stoffywelt.de 🙂

That softness of the flannel cotton is not only gentle on our daughter’s bum, but also on hands or face. She is drooling a lot these days, and using a tissue, towel or muslin cloth can be a bit rough on her skin after a while. Since using these cloths wipes on her face she doesn’t seem to fight it so much…I guess the flannel cotton really makes a difference even baby can feel.

I just love how they can be used for so much more than just the simple wash-cloth purpose. The cute, colourful designs seems fascinating to baby’s eye. Our little one loves to play and fiddle with one of those cloths while on the changing table or during a walk when laying in her pram. They are a good distraction & were able to entertain our daughter for several minutes at a time. DSCN2416.png
I have to admit that our baby girl likes the brightly coloured designs more than the ones with the light or softer hues. She will inspect all of them and tumble them around her tiny hands, but quickly drops the two that only have very little variety of colours.

I just use those not so fascinating ones to wipe her little fingers (when she yet again tried to eat her fist, silly girl ^.^) or tiny nose. And my nose. Yes, you read that right! Why only use them as wash cloth or cloth wipes when they can also be used as handkerchiefs, right?! They not only make our baby girl smile, but me as well! 🙂

How do we store & transport the cloth wipes??
In our wet bag of course! 🙂 Since we love owls and the nursery/baby room is owl themed I’m so excited to use the cloth wipe wet bag by Planet Wise with an owl design – just one of many gorgeous designs!
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It’s so cute, right?! The outside is simply cotton, but the inside of the pouch is designed so there are no leaks whatsoever. This means, we not only put our used, damp (from drool and whatnot) cloth wipes inside to take them home for a wash, but also can bring wet cloth wipes with us to use as wash cloth, and the wet bag will keep them wet and ready to use. Of course, you can also put other wet wipes in there to carry with you. I also tend to carry a teething ring or toy with me for our little girl, and like to transport it in this pouch for obvious reasons 😉 The wet bag also has those nifty snaps, so I can fit it even in a small bag or purse if the diaper bag is too full already. Very clever idea there, Planet Wise :

I can honestly say, the cloth wipes are in use every day around here, and I don’t really want to miss them anymore. I’m positively sure they will be used even when our baby turns into a toddler and older (hopefully not for drooling by then, but..you know what I mean ;)…)

*These products were kindly sent to me from www.Stoffywelt.de for extensive testing – Thank you!*

My dream vacation always will be…『blogtober 2014』

Day 21 of blogtober2014 takes me back to Japan – my “home away from home” kind of place.

Your Dream Vacation
I already wrote a blog post on our trip to Iceland, which was a bit like a dream, a totally different world ^^ In that blog entry I also mentioned anothere country which I want to talk about now as it is & always will be my “dream vacation place” to go 🙂

JAPAN – 日本 – TÔKYÔ – 東京
Ever since my first stay there in May 2008 (when I went to language school in Tôkyô) I fell in love with the city & country more and more. Tôkyô is a city that is making me feel just so…alive. I could probably write a novel-length entry about why I like it so much & keep going back every year, but maybe I will leave that for future blog entries, you know…talking about different aspects individually.
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view from Sky Tree over Tôkyô – with the Sky Tree casting its shadow

I filmed some footage on our last trip to (Tokyo) Japan in September 2013 and put it together with photos in a sort of vacation video. The annotations are in German but I think you can still enjoy watching if you can’t read German as pictures and video clips don’t need much explanation 🙂

Every time I go to Japan a little piece of my heart stays there, and I feel homesick for it when coming back to Germany.

 

Finally…in our arms ♥ Baby Album cover art

After a long journey, struggling with infertility due to Endometriosis, going through fertility treatments (IVF), our “Snowflake” from a frozen transfer stuck with us . Finally, in the early hours of July 18th, 2014 we were able to hold our precious daughter in our arms!

We are overflown with joy and excitement of what each new day brings and love to cuddly with our “Snowflake”. As she turns 1 week old today – I want to show you what I did to her Baby album cover (I went all crafty before birth to pass the waiting time). You see, she also has been given a ‘real’ name, obviously 😉

BABY ALBUM (front cover)

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I cross stitched her name ‘Nanami’ as well as some little decorational motives. The “subtitle” reads: Little summer snowflake. To add some playfulness I took buttons and just randomly put them on there as well. The crochet border is supposed to add some summer-vibes.

FRONT COVER INSIDE

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On the inside of the front cover I put a cross stitch owl family and in Japanese it says “Papa, Mama, Nanami” above their heads. I wrote down the lyrics of a song that just speaks right from our heart.

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The pages inside which we hope to fill with lots of photos are of different length because I put the same type of crochet border on each page as the front cover has. It’s just more vibrant and cheery that way I thought 🙂

On the inside of the BACK COVER I put the seasonal owls that I already posted a while ago on my blog here

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On our choice of name – NANAMI

It’s a name of Japanese origin that is usually written in simple Hiragana ななみ without having a meaning. If it is written in Kanji like this: 七海 it has the meaning of ‘seven seas.’ (To hear the pronounciation CLICK HERE )

We like to interpret the meaning of the Kanji as “Cosmopolitan”, because the “7 seas” go all around the world. We want our Snowflake to go wherever she wants to go in this world & have her discover the various, different, unique parts of the world on her own way. By that, we not only think of the geographical world, but also the different, colorful cultures, lifestyles, life plans people have (i.e. a couple = not just man/woman etc).

In that sense^^^^we hopefully manage to raise our girl to be an open-minded, cosmopolite person who will be able to live a colorful life with her very own mind ❤

 

 

 

Seasonal Owls – pixel art (cross stitch)

I finished tha last handmade project I started before giving birth – and it’s a cross stitch project.

“Seasonal Owls”: Spring – Summer – Fall – Winter

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I was working very hard on all four owls because I wanted to finish it before giving birth – I will not start anything else now while waiting to go into labour (^_^)

(Crochet) Baby Poncho – Little Owls

I really need to post more of my handmade projects, since I have finished so many lately. This time I want to show you the little Crochet Baby Poncho I made. I saw a photo of the poncho where it was made up of simple granny squares, but of course I wanted to add a little personality to it and just had to turn it into an OWL PONCHO (^_^)

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I first did the owl crochet parts, doing every owl twice so front and back matches! Then I put them all together in this shape and started with the edge…

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The edge is made up of bundles of double crochet stiches and then a row of shell stitches to make it look all nice and neat.

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For the arm-holes/cuffs I looked up how to do a flexible ripple crochet stitch that LOOKS like it’s knitted, but actually it’s all crochet 🙂

It totally fits with the owl theme of our nursery and even though it’s one of the project that took me the longest to finish I’m in love with how it looks all done!

 

 

Snowflake’s baby room tour (^_^)

We are finally done with moving & more importantly with setting up the baby room/nursery for our precious Snowflake. It’s turned out to be exactly as I pictured it in my mind all along, and so I decided to give you a little room tour in pictures (^_^)

Before we actually go into the baby room let me show you Snowflake’s swinging cradle standing in our living room right now.

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A newborn still sleeps a lot & I don’t want to be locked to the baby room all day having to put her down there only. This swinging cradle can be rolled to anywhere in the apartment really – so I can let Snowflake sleep in it and still take her with me into other rooms. This will also be rolled into our bedroom at night, so I can have her right next to our bed, watch her and feed her without having to run through the apartment. That black chair^^will later be put into Snwoflake’s actual room (you’ll see on the other pics)

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Right now Monchichi is test-sleeping in the cradle and I really like the duck-pattern bed sheets that came with it. Fits our blue living room curtains so well (and also our pink bedroom curtains)

!!!!! NOW ON TO THE ACTUAL BABY ROOM !!!!!

First up the lamp and curtain

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We basically have almost every piece of furniture in that room from IKEA – just like this cloud-lamp and the curtain with the playful pattern. I bought that 3 years ago with no actual use in mind and only rediscovered it during the move, but it goes perfectly well with her room and her playful/active personality she is showing in ultrasounds already 🙂

Let’s have a look at the corner to the right of the door (when you walk in) first

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We have some drawers, that black chair from the living room which will be there after the birth & the cloth diaper corner.But let’s have a closer look at some details, yea?!!
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Right next to the door is this owl hanger where Snowflake can put her coats and jackets later on. Beneath that we have the foot-part of the relaxing chair with my fabulous Boo Poo changing/diaper bag ❤ on top.Next is the drawer & a cute and colourful wall tattoo
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I ordered the wall tattoo at Klebefieber and you could choose size and even some colours I think, they custom make it then for you. We are not big on actually painting the walls so those tattoos are a great and easy way to bring some colour and playfulness to the room. The drawers were simply wooden style from IKEA, but I chose to get some rice-paper tape with cherry blossoms on it and make it more of an individual design for Snowflake. Really satisfied how my idea turned out there.You can see the books I chose for Snowflake so far on the top of the drawer. I want there to be books in her life right from the very beginning even if she can’t read/understand all of them right away. There is also my cross stitch work from more than 10 years ago, as I thought it fits the wall tattoo nicely.
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The blue bear one is a simple picture book, her FIRST book so to speak & it has a plush gerbil watching over the book, since we have real gerbils, too 🙂 The big colourful one is about mice living togethere in a house, and it has lots of parts where you can open up (the door or window for instance) and discover things. Along with a small storyline I can read at bed/nap time. It introduces colours, shapes, numbers etc, too. Then I put my favourite fairy tale book there: ‘Snow White’ along with a children’s story from a famous german children’s book author : ‘The Little Witch’ by Ottfried Preußler. Underneath there is a lovely illustrated book we bought in Iceland, telling the saga of the 13 Santas of Iceland who are all brothers and come to visit the children one by one each night leading up to christmas day. They sold it in different languages, even in German and I can’t wait for all the christmas-times to come so I can read it to/with snowflake!Moving on to the shelfs on the other wall of that corner (above the black chair)
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On the top shelf we have some boxes (ergo baby carrier for instance) and then plushie friends: pig-rabbit (from a korean drama series) I received from a korean friend, a little penguin we bought in Enoshima Aquarium, the owl that will turn into a blanket (bought last year in Japan) and a sheep that has a heating pillow inside it’s belly that you can simply heat up in the microwave and thus the sheep functions as a sort of hot water bottle, but more gentle and no direct heat (better for little ones). I received that from a scottish friend some years ago ❤

You also see the little violet owl music box hanging there. Since the changing table is next to the shelves it will hopefully help in keeping snowflake’s attention when she is fussy about getting changed.9
Here’s the shelves with our cloth diaper stash. I want to make a more detailed post about it later on, but basically we decided to go with the prefold system of cloth diapering. Thus you see the prefolds on top (most of them were used by me as a baby, my mother kept them all, washed and cleaned and handed them to me a few weeks ago – Thanks Mum!!!) On the lower shelves you see the covers (prefolds are put into those) & I just love all the different patterns. I ordered those from Stoffy-Welt. More details in another post somewhen. The cross stitching picture says: “comforted with love”The cloth diaper stash leads us to the changing table next to those shelves
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Again there is a huge owl there watching over Snowflake when getting changed. It’s also a wall tattoo.
I want to add that we didn’t go all owl-crazy because it has been a trend for the past years or something. Sure they are cute and I’ve seen lots of people using the owl theme for their nursery, but to us, the owls have another personal meaning. We connect them to our times in Japan, our favourite part of Tokyo to be exact: Ikebukuro, which sounds like “fukuro” which is the japanese word for owl. Therefore you see lots of owl things in Ikebukuro and when we see the owls in Snowflake’s nursery we think of that and want to tell her all about it later.
Anyways, the changing table is from IKEA as well, and we personally liked it more than the shelved ones they have. It’s standing safe and all, so no worries there!! You can also see the baby bath tub on the bottom^^^Next to the changing table we have the baby bed corner!
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Again it has owl-tattoos watching over our snowflake. The bed as well as the big green leaf and bed sheets are from IKEA as well. We really like the combination of natural wood colours & green (aside from some colourful spots of course) as a main “theme”Here is a close up of the paper cranes I folded and attached to the leaf as a sort of mobile-substitute (we didn’t want a real mobile) & the bed sheet design
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I simply used an old book I didn’t enjoy reading that much that I wanted to keep it, and tore off some paged to fold those paper cranes, then attached them to the leave hangin to on each string. No worries, none of them are directly over the head/face area of snowflake, and if she is tall enough to actually grab them (even with lowered bed) I can simply cut them all off – done 🙂

Next to the bed is a little corner where I put some toy already
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it’s a wooden wagon thingy, that helps toddlers to walk, so of course Snowflake won’t be doing needing that right away, but the wooden blocks there can be used to play before she can walk, love that they are all coloured differently. In general we want most of the toys to be wooden or some other organic material rather than plastic, so this is a start.

Oh you can also see the really thick second curtain that is a lovely nature-green and will darken the room during the day when Snowflake needs that (there is no direct sun going into that room until sunset really, but the windows are big and plenty so enough daylight to enjoy).

Next up is the play/crawling/spacious corner of the room
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These are tatami mats (made of bamboo) as they are used in Japan. We actually slept on those (with a futon obviously) all Japanese Style until I hit my 2nd trimester of pregnancy when it became uncomfortable to to the bump. Now that we moved we bought a “real” bed for us. We always knew that when we will have a child, the tatami mats are going in the child’s room as they make a perfect play/crawl area. tatami is very nice to sit on as it’s not as hard as the wooden floor, also not as “cold” as it keeps warm especially in winter. When you spread out a blanket it’s perfect for the baby to lay on there and maybe play underneath one of those arches (we don’t have yet), it’s sooo good for your back – I can tell from our own experience. I put a japanese chair in green on it that we bought in japan, for comfortable relaxing Snowflake will hopefully enjoy. I used the cut off part of the green thick curtains to make pillow covers there. Pillows come in handy when baby’s try to learn to sit up as they let themselves fall back a bunch of times first and with a pillow there you can catch them gently. It’s also making a cozy atmosphere really!

^^^You also see the rest of the owl tattoos places there as a little family. It’s supposed to be our family with Snowflake sitting on daddy’s hat, tehee. I wasn’t satisfied with just the blank white wall space above so I got some coloured paper, cut out some hearts, put them on a string and attached them to the wall. it’s raining hearts on the owl family 😀 they are fluttering a bit when you go by or open a window, so it’s suiting the play-area well!!

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Next to the tatami we have a white storage box perfectly for toddler’s (height) to store away more toys she’ll probably receive from family members. she can also use it to pull herself up when learning to stand or so.

You can already get a glimpse of more drawers in the back there that I made more cute with the cherry blossom rice paper, in the same fashion I already explained a few pics back with the other drawer 😉
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Aaaand here you see what we did with the space ABOVE those drawers^^^ I enjoy doing lots of handmade pieces of clothes for the baby lately (knitting/crochet etc) and I also received clothes from my mum that she kept from when I was a baby/toddler. I thought: “Wouldn’t it be just lovely to display them in a nice way, not just storing them away somewhere for no one to see”. This led us to the idea of a free hanging (metal) line where you can just hang up all the lovliest, sweetes, cutest, most precious pieces of clothes. In my opinion handmade stuff deserves to be displayed nicely and since we didn’t want a real warddrobe piece of furniture clogging up the room yet, it seemed like the perfect idea. Loving that display a lot!!!^^^

In the corner to the left of the drawers (the corner behind the door when it’s opened) is basically just used for storage, and we hung a green thingy from the ceiling that you also get from IKEA to put more plush toys and stuff in it. You can also see the highchair behind it which will come into use later.
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Also wanted to show you how I organised most of the inside of my drawers. We bought different sized little storage boxes and I sorted the onsies, rompers and all the other clothes into that^^^

Last but not least – our little wooden baby swing – Snowflake bear is testing it right now!
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We really liked the wooden design and that it’s not the usual swings (mostly with plastic) that you see in the shops. We think it fits our whole baby room & apartment furniture style well. Also liking the fabric pattern very much. It has little flaps so that you can turn it from a swing into a stationary 🙂

We really are in love with how our Snowflake room turned out. It’s an incredible feeling to stand in that room and imagining it to come to live once Snowflake arrives – something one year ago today we weren’t sure we’d ever get to experience (due to infertility).