custom fabric · diy · mental health · pdf patterns · sewing · womens fashion

Mental Health Matters

Trigger warning, this post discusses suicide.

I am a bad mom, I’m not good enough, nobody likes me, I’m a failure. These are just a few of the negative thoughts that I have often. As with many others I am at war with my brain nearly every single day.

When I was growing up, I was made to feel that my feelings didn’t matter as much as others, that I was sometimes a burden, and that I should just keep my head down and keep quiet. And when I was 17 years old, I grew such hate for myself and my environment that I made a plan to end my own life. Thankfully, I said something to someone before I followed through because that is what I needed at that time. I was admitted to a psychiatric facility for four days before I was released. Since then, I have managed my dark thoughts and depression with medication and therapy.

More recently, just in the past few months, I am believed to have Bi-polar disorder and ADHD. As I’ve previously stated, this past year hasn’t been the easiest and I’ve definitely fallen into the darkest thoughts again, and in this darkness, I came up with a vision on a design I wanted to have come to life to depict how my brain is 99% of the time. This vision included an ariel view of the human brain, one side blossoming with flowers and kind words, while the other was dark, cloudy and filled with hateful words. I know how to sew but my 5-year-old can draw better than I can, so I needed to find someone who could help me bring this idea to life.

I told you I wasn’t a very good artist.

Initially, I asked a designer who had designed something for me in the past, but her schedule got busier, and we had two different interpretations on my vision, so it didn’t work out. I love to print all of my custom design fabrics at Raspberry Creek Fabrics so I posted in their Facebook group asking if anyone would be willing to work with me, Liz was the first to comment. I quickly messaged her and told her what I was thinking. Later that night, or the next morning (She’s FAST!!) I got a first glance at the design and to see where she was headed with it. After a few adjustments with coloring and placement it was ready to go! I love how she was able to see what I was envisioning, and if you look at the image below, you’ll see that the negative thoughts are actually the brain waves.

The final design printed on sweatshirt fleece.

Luckily, last weekend RCF had a “Custom Print Party” (a sale) so, I was able to print my design on a couple of fabric bases at a discounted price (WINNING!). Liz did offer to put the design as a panel layout, but I wanted to play around with it and not be committed to just one option, so she sent me the image in different sized files, one even large enough to print and make a blanket (which is a genius idea!) I like to use Canva to create my panel layouts, it’s free and pretty simple. In addition to the panel printed on sweatshirt fleece I also printed on double brushed poly. My planned patterns were the Sav Sweatshirt for the fleece and the Green Tee using the DBP. Side note: you can get the Green Tee free with a code found in their Facebook group.

When the fabric arrived Monday night after ogling over the design in person, I noticed that I may have messed up on the panel placement on the sweatshirt fleece. I had one panel printed on the entire yard and chose to have the panel closer to one side instead of in the center in hopes to get more out of the yard. I thought I measured correctly but, it was in fact too close to one side which affected my original pattern I had in mind.

After doing some searching for an alternative and asking around, I decided to give a new to me pattern a shot. I purchased the Bianca Pullover. It still has the dolman type sleeves like the Sav but isn’t as oversized, so I was able to make it work! I looked over the options and all the tester photos to determine which I thought would look best for my body shape and the panel and decided to do the hip length option, hemmed instead of with a band. This gave me a longer cropped look without showing my midriff. Choosing to omit the band also brought me out of my comfort zone with what I’m used to wearing.

While my initial plan didn’t work out, I’m still thrilled with how it came out and also feel like my mistake was a blessing in disguise. Personally, I think the sizing of the panel would have been too small for the Sav and would have been more hidden, whereas the Bianca option I went with it’s perfect. I’ve already created new panel layouts in a larger scale and plan to order from RCF soon so I can still get my Sav with this design, because I can never have too many Sav’s!

Thank you for joining me today, I hope I inspired you or maybe brought you some sort of comfort. If you have your own personal design in mind but can’t execute it yourself, I highly recommend you reach out to Liz. She is so easy to work with, truly listens to you and as I mentioned above, she is SO FAST!

For anyone else struggling with mental health issues, please remember that you’re not alone and you are loved! If you know anyone who may be struggling, please don’t keep quiet. Continue to talk to them and remind them how special they are and if there’s anything you can do to help them out.

I also put together a Tik Tok on this if you’d like to check it out. This will also be posted to my Instagram sometime today.

Until next time,


This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase through this link, I may get a % at no additional cost to you. Thank you! Happy creating!

diy · Lingerie · Made For Mermaids · pdf patterns · sewing · Uncategorized · Valentine's Day

Victoria who?

Picture this, it’s 2011 I’m a 21-year-old newlywed Air Force wife who just moved from Utah to Virigina. I was working at Victoria’s Secret, selling beautiful and delicate lingerie, pajamas, sweatsuits, and bathing suits. I was always amazed at the intricate details that were in these slinky little bras and panties. I would have never imagined that one day I would make my own. Guess what?! I did!

In January 2020 I purchased the Bridgette Bralette and Victoria Panty bundle from Made for Mermaids Lounge and Lace Collection. I had seen so many amazing photos of fellow sewists sharing their makes on these sexy little patterns. I was feeling confident enough I wanted to give it a go myself. Well, I chickened out and didn’t actually do it until two weeks ago. I have had more than a few battles with my sewing machine and eating up certain types of fabric, (I even broke my first machine in 2019 while sewing up a full sequin dress) where it just left me in frustration and wanting to throw my machine out of the window, which I’m sure many of us have felt on more than one occasion. I was terrified of buying some luxurious lace fabric and have my sewing machine destroy it.

Well, I am pleased to announce that no lace was eaten during these projects and honestly, I’m SHOCKED! Now you may be wondering what gave me this recent motivation to finally attempt these patterns. The older I get the more I loathe bras. I hate the underwire, the discomfort, the sweating, and just feeling suffocated. It’s always the first thing to come off when we get home from going somewhere (that is, if I even bothered to put one on). I’ve made plenty of sports bras which I really do adore, but most times the neckline is higher and that doesn’t always work with certain tops.

Raspberry Creek Fabrics recently released their Easter fabric line, and while I typically don’t make anything for myself for this holiday, this Tonal Royal Blue and Green Blue Bonnet Floral Print Fabric, from The Cottage Core Collection by Bri Powell print really caught my eye. I’m not a floral expert and you definitely shouldn’t ask me to take care of your plants when you’re out of town, so when I first saw this print, I thought they were Snapdragons. In my personal opinion I do feel they look very similar. This print drew me in due to some sentiment, it reminds me of my grandparents. When my sister and I were growing up we would often have sleepovers at this set of grandparents’ home. While there are several memories I will cherish from these sleepovers, I am only going to mention said snapdragons. They had these flowers in their backyard. My sister and I loved them, we thought the opening looked that of a mouth. My grandma would occasionally pull a bud or two off and place her fingers at the closed end of the flower and apply pressure, then release to make the flower appear as if it were talking and we thought it was the funniest thing.

Given this sentiment I had to buy a small amount to make myself something. I only allowed myself to purchase a half yard. I can make a pair of shorts for my kids out of a half yard, even a color blocked tee. For myself though, not so much. Flowers are a very delicate thing, I thought what else is delicate, a bralette. Using this cotton spandex fabric also gave me the opportunity to make a muslin of the Bridgette bralette pattern before moving onto a full lace version. I did still however, need to purchase stretch lace trim to finish all of the edges and making the straps. This Royal 1.25″ Wide Stretch Lace from Surge Fabrics was a near perfect match to the blue in the print and made the flowers really pop. I also chose to line this version with White Power Net to give myself more support. This pattern has three different back options, for this version I chose the racerback. Made For Mermaids did an excellent job in executing the instructions for this pattern. Not only were there written instructions but also links to video tutorials if you are a more visual learner.

This first version did still come with a lot of trial and error. First, I didn’t pay attention to the cup pattern pieces in regard to which way the greatest direction of stretch needed to be. While, I did have enough fabric to re cut these pieces the correct direction I opted to just try it out as it would cause the floral to be sideways which I didn’t find visually appealing. I also realized that I should have disengaged my blade on my serger or just used my sewing machine altogether due to the fact that it left some of the lace edges looking funny. I thankfully was able to seam rip and correct by folding over some of the lace edges or carefully cutting off excess to make it blend in instead of looking choppy. Lastly, I determined that I needed to cut longer shoulder straps to fit my body. The fact that I cut the cup pieces the wrong direction also contributes to the shorter strap issue as well. Overall, I do feel my cotton version turned out rather nicely for my first attempt at this pattern.

For my full lace option, I ordered the Tropic Rose 8.5″ Wide Stretch Lace from Surge Fabric. I also ordered the 3/8″ Pink Glo Satin Strap & Picot Elastic which was a nice pairing to the lace. To make things different from the previous I chose to go with the cross-back option and make it unlined. This version came together much quicker due to the fact that I didn’t have to finish the edges by adding lace trim. I also added 1.5″ to the shoulder strap pieces to give myself more wiggle room to work with which would up being the perfect length for my body. I also was lucky enough to have enough lace fabric to make a matching pair of Victoria Panties. This pattern comes together so freaking fast! If you go for the unlined full lace option like I did you only need to sew together the front and back seams, top stitch, sew together the crotch seam, and top stitch then, BAM, you’ve got a new pair of panties! I was worried I wouldn’t like these cheekies, as I’m not a fan of thongs or anything riding up my butt. I am pleasantly surprised that when I wear these, I don’t even notice that I’m wearing anything at all.

I am still in disbelief that I made something so stunning and can’t wait to purchase more lace to make more. There’s one thing I constantly have to remind myself of and that is, we can’t gain more experience and grow if we stick to our comfort zones all the time and making these patterns definitely took me out of my comfort zone. I also put together a Tik Tok for each of these makes that you can watch here and here. I would also love if you gave me a follow across other platforms.

I hope I inspired you today. Remember to always be true and always be you.

Until next time,


This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase through this link, I may get a % at no additional cost to you. Thank you! Happy creating!

Halloween · Halloween costume · kids clothing · Kids fashion · Pattern Hack · pdf patterns · sewing · Tortoise · Uncategorized

Tortoise Costume

I briefly was a part of Raspberry Creek Fabrics blogger team (and absolutely LOVED IT!) I wanted to share it here as well. This has somewhat been edited since I originally wrote it. All photos and writing are my own.

Hello, I’m so thrilled to share my sons costume for Halloween (2021) with all of you. My son has been turtle obsessed for a couple of years now and has wanted one as a pet for just as long. Well, this past July we finally decided to add a baby sulcata tortoise to our family. We are all absolutely smitten with him or her (we won’t know gender until around 4 years of age). Of course, that only made his love for turtles grow more.

When I asked both my kids last month what they wanted to be this year I was not at all surprised when my son said tortoise. My mind immediately started to ponder ideas on how I could make this happen for him. I mostly couldn’t wrap my head around how I could create the shell while still allowing it to have volume and dimension. I took to google first to see if I could find any tutorials, that turned up no luck. I saw this as a challenge accepted, I would take this opportunity to try something new and really get my creativity flowing. 

I absolutely love RCF fabrics so I wanted to check what taupe/light brown shades they had available in the shop that would work for my vision. The khaki tan french terry fit the bill perfectly. All RCF french terry always amazes me with how soft and cushy it feels, my son was getting his dream costume but would also be so incredibly comfortable!! (Win, win!)

Once I decided on fabric, I moved onto what patterns I wanted to use as my base. For the pants I immediately thought of the Drew Joggers from Petite Stitchery Co. The rouching detail option perfectly depicts our little torts cute wrinkly legs. For the top I knew I wanted to attach the shell to a hoodie, I went with the Hannah from Sonia Estep Designs (which has since been discontinued) and used the crossover hood option from the add on pack. 

Rouching detail on the drew joggers.

For the base of the tortoise shell, I did a standard oval. Now, let me note that I have a projector and I have found that I love using it for more than just projecting patterns. I also have a Cricut, so I used design space to make an oval in the shape I wanted and projected it onto my cut mat, over the back bodice, to visualize how large I wanted it. Once I determined the size I wanted the oval to be, I cut it out. I then lined up the back bodice of the hoodie and centered the oval over that with right sides together. To secure the two I used wash away wonder tape, then measured 1.5” from the edge of the shell and sewed all the way around using a zig zag stitch. (You don’t want to sew too close to the edge or you’ll interfere with the remainder of the hoodie construction) 

Next, we’re going to work on the top of the shell. To make sure we can add volume but keep the sides at a 1:1 ratio you’re going to measure the circumference of the oval. I marked the top center and bottom center and measured the distance between those two points which came to 27.5”. You’re then going to make two half circles, the straight line being the measurement you got for your oval. The fun part is you now get to decide how large you want your shell to be, there’s no wrong answer here. Once you’ve made your two half circles, you’re going to use your serger or sewing machine to sew the two half circles on the curved edge right sides together. (I used a 1/4” seam allowance)

Half circles cut out.

Before attaching the top of the shell to the base I decided it would be easiest to add the scutes (the darker plates on the top of the shell) first. There are a few ways you can do this, you can use a fabric marker and draw them on, use another color of fabric and sew them onto the shell, you can use an embroidery machine, or use HTV (heat transfer vinyl). For my muslin I used fabric markers. While it didn’t look terrible a friend mentioned it gave Teenage mutant ninja turtle vibes and I must agree with her. The fabric marker was also inconsistent and didn’t give full coverage. So, I decided to go for HTV. I went back to my Cricut design space and made a mockup of the shell so I could play around with how I wanted my scutes to look. I found that using a standard hexagon shape but narrowing the height and bringing out the width it gave the look I was going for. After completing my mockup, I used my Cricut to print out the scutes in pieces. (With the round shape it would be very difficult to have it all in one piece) 

I started by finding the center of the shell and using a pin to mark it. I also marked the center points of the first scute I wanted to place and lined the two up. After adhering the first scute I worked from top to bottom then moving my way outward. This step was by far the most challenging. It took time and patience to ensure I didn’t iron on the htv with a crease in the fabric.

Now that the scutes are finished we are going to attach the upper shell to the base shell.  I’d like to note that before doing so I made a small little tail by cutting out two narrow triangle pieces out of the main fabric and one out of fusible interfacing. Once my tail was put together, I basted it to the right side of the shell base with the flat edge to the edge of the shell (you don’t want to cut off your tail!) You’re then going to sew the two shell pieces sides together. This means your back bodice will be sandwiched between the two. I marked the top and bottom center points of the base and matched the top shell pieces center points. Before stitching you’ll need to decide how you’d like to enclose your shell, (remember you still need to turn right side out, so you need to leave a small opening!) you can ladder stitch or use an invisible zipper. I went for an invisible zipper in a similar color so I could remove the poly filling for washes.

After turning the shell right side out, I then used a zig zag stitch and sewed around the entire shell to add detail and try to mimic what an actual tortoise shell looks like. My stitches are ¾” long and about 1” spaced apart.

Close view of the stitches around the entire shell.

Next you will finish construction of the hoodie pattern you chose before moving onto filling the shell. During construction of the hood, I added eyes and nostrils using black htv. If you have an embroidery machine, I think that would look even better! Sadly, I don’t have one yet. Finally, you’ll fill your shell with poly fill and sew it closed if you left an opening. Now we’re done! My son is absolutely in love with how it turned out and has asked to wear it whenever possible. I can’t wait for him to show it off to everyone this Halloween. 

Thanks for joining me today!

Until next time,


This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase through this link, I may get a % at no additional cost to you. Thank you! Happy creating!

kids clothing · Kids fashion · sewing · Uncategorized · Valentine's Day

I’m a sucker for you.

Or maybe lollipop, lollipop, I can’t decide. Either way I’ve been singing both songs in my head since we took photos.

Let me back up a little bit, yesterday my kids school district called a snow day due to an incoming storm. However, you’ll see this was unnecessary when you notice a lack of snow in our photos. I understand they were erring on the side of caution because the weather can be unpredictable. As I’ve mentioned in the past both of my kids have special needs. One of those needs is speech therapy (my son has apraxia of speech, and my daughter is suspected to have it.) Wednesday is our speech day, typically it’s after school but because of school closures our speech therapist reached out to us inviting us to come earlier in the day as the worst of the storm was expected to come in the afternoon. (Still, not very eventful here. Although I’m not mad about it. I hate the cold.) We accepted this offer, at first, I was extremely disappointed to hear about this “snow day” as both kids missed Monday, and my son missed Tuesday due to illnesses. I didn’t want them missing another day of school and I honestly needed a break now that they were feeling better. Then with more thought I turned a negative into a positive, we could spend time together having fun (we also went shopping to spend some Christmas gift cards of theirs) and, bonus, I could grab some photos and video of their new Valentine’s Day tops.

I had Tayln and Ellie wear their V-DAY shirts to speech therapy so we could try to grab photos afterwards. Speech is about 15 minutes away and because of this I’m still learning that area. After speech I decided to scope out the surrounding area for a place that could make for a great background. Much to my luck just up the road was a beautiful pond with a gazebo overlooking it. I pulled into the small dirt parking lot and asked my kids what they thought. They both agreed that it looked fun, so we unloaded from the car and headed towards the gazebo. It was so serene, and I could see it become a sanctuary to just be lost in thought and enjoy nature. To add to the excitement there were a handful or two of ducks swimming around in the pond. My kids were both so tickled and this brought my daughter to forget why we were there in the first place and just wanted to look at the ducks. My son on the other hand was like, okay, we’re here for pictures can we do that first then enjoy the ducks? Because it’s still winter and it’s cold. These ducks must be fed by visitors often, as they continued to follow us wherever we went, my kids thought that this was the coolest thing. My son started spouting all the information he had on ducks, how the males are called drakes and they are the ones that are green and brown. The females are primarily brown with black specks. I was so amazed by his knowledge of this! Okay, anyway….

My son’s choice of fabric was this red and black multi-stripe from Raspberry Creek Fabrics which is part of the “For You” collection for Valentine’s Day 2023. I showed him the adorable panel that would pair with it and said yes, I now opt for the adult panels for Tayln. We chose French Terry for the fabric base to make sure he would be warm and cozy. I’m a sucker for Bow Button Fabric’s ribbing (see what I did there), so that is what I used for the neckband, cuffs and waistband. The ribbing she carries has a great stretch and recovery and it holds a press SO WELL! Sav’s sweatshirt from Greenstyle Creations is my all-time favorite slouchy sweatshirt for adults and kids. Tayln is usually between sizes in all patterns because he is extremely slender but also very tall for his age. For this pattern he was between size 7 and 8, I chose to make a straight size 8 since this pattern is already intended to be slouchy and oversized. When he first tried this on, he was unsure about it and in his words thought it “looked girly.” I reassured him that a girl or boy could pull it off and that he looked very handsome in it. This made him feel much better about wearing it. What do you think? Doesn’t he look so handsome and very cozy?

My daughter was a complete spit fire when it came to taking these photos. As I stated before, she saw the ducks and that was all she cared about. After my son finished his pictures, I pulled a lollipop out of my pocket to give to him as a thank you for taking pictures. (The pictures are for me; they could care less about them.) This caught Ellie’s attention rather quickly. “WAIT! YOU HAVE LOLLIPOPS?! I WANT ONE!” I reminded her that she would earn hers after some photos. She pulled herself together (somewhat) to take pictures. The idea of this soon to have a yummy lollipop brought a huge smile to her face while she proceeded to try and stand still but couldn’t help but jump up and down yelling “lollipop, lollipop, lollipop” over and over.

Ellie did not much care to pick out her V-DAY fabric, so I chose for her. I know she loves candy, so of course she’d love the Red Black and White Sucker Heart Print Fabric. This is also from the same “For you” collection from Raspberry Creek Fabrics. I again, chose French Terry as the fabric base (and also used the same ribbing as what I used for Tayln’s.) In 2021 I made Ellie a Hannah hoodie from Sonia Estep designs, which has since been discontinued. I used a neon fuchsia and carmine brushed French Terry from Fab Clique Fabrics and cut out a heart shape to make as the front pocket as I did for her hoodie last year. I also included elbow patches. Since then, I’ve decided to incorporate a heart applique to her Valentine’s tops.

I was initially so torn on which pattern to use for Ellie. Ultimately, I decided on the Janie top from Petite Stitchery Co. I considered making the panel a pocket like I did last year but decided it would take away from the elasticized waist in the pattern. After I cut out the pattern pieces, I took the front bodice and placed it face up on my cutting mat. Using a projector to cut out patterns is such a game changer and time saver (and it saves some trees), anyway, I like to open Cricut Design Space and add a heart shape design. With the projector I am able to project this image over my cut mat, the same as I do when cutting out a pattern. From there I play around with the sizing I want to use for the front applique. I am a visual learner so this helps me to ensure I will be happy with the final outcome. Once I decided on the sizing, I removed the bodice from the cut mat and centered the panel with the heart. (I still use youth panels for Ellie by the way.) Then I simply use my rotary cutter to cut out the panel. I was afraid that the panel alone against the sucker/heart fabric would blend too much so I cut out a slightly larger heart in black French Terry to separate the two fabrics. This also helped bring out the small hearts in the fabric. I write in more detail on this from last year’s blog post if you’d like more information on how I added it to the bodice etc. This will help me from repeating myself (I already do that enough as a mother, LOL)

I think that’s it for me for today! We definitely made some fun new memories yesterday and I plan to bring them back to this gem again. It’ll definitely be more enjoyable once it warms up. I also made a TikTok featuring some video from our shoot if you want to check it out! I hope I gave you fellow crafters some inspiration today, and if I did, please let me know because I’d love to hear! Always be true and always be you.

Until next time,


Saying goodbye to the ducks on our way back to the car.

This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase through this link, I may get a % at no additional cost to you. Thank you! Happy creating!

kids clothing · Kids fashion · sewing · St. Patrick's Day

If you’re happy and you know it!

Cue the kazoo music, okay but seriously, thank you so much to those who reached out to me about my last blog post. You seriously touched my heart and made my day. Now onto today’s topic. I always look forward to Raspberry Creek Fabrics holiday fabrics, the designers are amazing and they’re always offering something unique. My most recent order from them consisted of Valentine’s, St. Patrick’s, and Easter fabrics. Since I started sewing clothing for my family, it has truly become a tradition to sew them a new top for every holiday. Okay, not every holiday, but several of them. I had a very productive week sewing together 3 tops for each of my children and a pair of leggings for my daughter. I’m going to start by sharing my children’s St. Patrick’s Day hoodies because well, that’s what they wanted to wear to school today. As I stated in my last post, we now live in the state of New York. (No not the city, the suburbs) although both my kids love to call New York the “big apple.” This means that we have more cold months than warm months. (Huge Bummer!!) It also means that I can’t do cute bubble shorts or tanks quite yet. I had to remind myself of this when ordering from RCF and planning out patterns I was going to use. I so desperately wanted to make Ellie a pair of bubble shorts for her Easter outfit, because omg little girls in bubble shorts. ADORABLE! Then back to reality, it will most likely still be pants weather come Easter. Oh right, back to St. Patrick’s Day.

Like I said, cue the kazoo music. My son got a kazoo in his music class yesterday, so we’ve been humming tunes since.

I almost always let my kids pick out their own fabrics, coincidentally they both picked out fabrics from the Happy Paddy collection by Bri Powell. My son immediately said, “the dinosaur!” as soon as he started looking. I mean a t-rex wearing a leprechaun hat, how creative and fun! My daughter chose the smiley faces for herself. Aside from the yellow cuff ribbing (which is from Bow Button Fabrics) all of the fabric bases are French terry for these projects. The pattern I chose is the Be Creative hoodie from Ellie and Mac patterns. Ellie and Mac are the true champion when it comes to color block patterns! I love to color block; it just adds a whole new creative aspect to any pattern.

I chose a panel for the front bodice of both hoodies, I also used the retro stripes (which do look so retro, makes me think 70’s) as the top color blocking for both the front and back. I didn’t want Tayln’s hoodie to be too much t-rex so that’s why I continued the stripes for his sleeves. Ellie’s on the other hand, I felt would look better with the smiley faces for her sleeves. While nothing is wrong with having too much t-rex or any of one pattern for that matter, it’s just not the look I was going for. I really wanted each fabric design to stand out in their own way. This is the third year I have included the solid Kelly green into their St. Patrick’s Day tops. This has never been intentional, it’s just that perfect bright green that you think of when you think St. Patrick’s. Then again, that solid has always been included in the fabric design we pick every year, so really, I’m just trying to match. LOL. Although, I may make a point to make using Kelly green as a tradition, because why not?!

I have made Tayln a Be Creative Hoodie once before, with that one I did a plain hood with no grommets, drawstring etc. This time around I wanted to give it a shot. While I have worked with grommets several times, I’d never done patches. Now I know this is such a simple addition, it still adds extra detail to the hood which I love. I used my best friend, aka wash-a-way wonder tape to keep the patches secure while I stitched them into place. Typically, I make my own drawstrings for projects using fabric, this time I used a black polyester cable/pillow cord from Wawak. I initially planned to use a similar white polyester cable/pillow cord, but I didn’t pay enough attention to the size difference and when it arrived, I was shocked, it’s twice the size of the black and just makes me think of a rope you’d use to tie back your drapes. So black it was, and what a happy accident it turned out to be because it really brings out the black in the print, specifically the smiley faces.

It never seizes to amaze me at how a simple yard of fabric can become whatever you dream it to be. I think that’s it for this blog post, I hope you enjoy it! Always be true and always be you. (My new mantra for myself, but that’s for another time)

Until next time,


This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase through this link, I may get a % at no additional cost to you. Thank you! Happy creating!

mental health · military family · sewing · Type 1 diabetes

Let me reintroduce myself.

Where do I even begin?? This past year has taken a toll on my mental health for several reasons. Around February we heard that my husband may have a job opportunity in New York. Being a military wife, I’m used to moving frequently. This time just hit me different, we hadn’t been in Vegas even 2 years yet and it is the closest to home I’ve felt. We finally built our dream home, we love the warm weather, and for me overall I just couldn’t imagine leaving it all behind. Staying however, was affecting my husband’s happiness. It felt like he was at work more than he was home and this new job would give him more flexibility to help out when needed and be present for every parent meeting and important event in our children’s lives. I put my own feelings and fears aside and said we could give it a try. I should note I don’t adapt well to change, again I’m a military spouse so I should be used to this so don’t come after me. It’s just who I am.

My husband and I at our Las Vegas home

Several months passed (it felt like an eternity), and we finally found out in June that he got the job in New York, his report no later than was the end of August. Anxiety took over me, we had such a short time frame to list and sell our home and we all know how the market turned last year so quickly. Fast forward another month, our home is listed but something else happens. We start to notice a change in our 5-year-old daughter, Ellie. She isn’t her usual happy go lucky self. She’s very cranky, seems thinner, is constantly thirsty and was having frequent accidents. We couldn’t figure out where all of this was coming from, was she feeding off the stress of all the change that was happening? A couple weeks pass with no change and my anxious self is starting to really worry so I start thinking in more depth about what could be causing this. Then it hit me one night while brushing my teeth, diabetes. My heart sank and I started doing all kinds of late-night research on symptoms of diabetes in children. I couldn’t sleep. The next morning, I express my thought to my husband and called my daughters pediatrician. Thankfully her pediatrician took my concerns very seriously and was able to get us in fairly quickly.

The day of her appointment comes, and they call asking us to arrive early so she can give a urine sample. We oblige, now my daughter and I are face to face with her pediatrician. He makes small talk and asks about Ellie’s symptoms being so nonchalant. In my mind I’m thinking he’s going to tell me I’m overreacting, and my daughter is perfectly fine. Wrong, a quick change in tone has him telling me that my daughter has large amounts of ketones in her urine, and she most likely has type 1 diabetes, and we need to leave right now to take her to the emergency room. My heart immediately sinks, and my eyes feel with tears. The Dr. reassures me that everything will be okay and if he had to pick a lifelong illness for his child, diabetes would be the one.

My daughter is completely oblivious as to what is going on. I’m trying to explain to her the best way I can that she is really sick, so we need to go to the ER to have her checked out more. I call my husband to relay the information, he leaves work, picks up our son from aba and meets us at the hospital. The ped called the hospital to let them know we were in route, so when we arrived, they were already expecting us. The nurse takes my daughters vitals and gives her a finger stick to check her blood sugar, it reads 527. Now for anyone that knows nothing about blood sugar (I didn’t) average range for a non-diabetic person is between 90-140. So, for her blood sugar to be 527 that’s far from good.

They immediately take us back to a room and let us know that they need to put an iv in our daughter’s hand to give her fluids and help flush out all the ketones. What happens next is a memory that will forever stick with me and hurt me. First, I should mention again that my daughter is a very happy go lucky child. This child had to get stitches in the back of her head at the age of 3 and she sat still for the Dr. no screaming whatsoever and just so chill. (Crazy right) So, if my child was feeling well and fully healthy, she wouldn’t mind an iv in her hand if you explain to her why we need to do it. Ellie was crying to the nurse to please not poke her. She was begging, sobbing. It was awful. When the nurse stuck the iv into my daughter’s hand my daughter threw her hand back and the iv came straight out. All the while my 9-year-old son is in the doorway watching his younger sister in a complete panic, screaming. This has him terrified for his sister. We are trying to now soothe both of our children. In all of the panic my daughter has peed her pants and I don’t realize until I pick her up and hold her against my stomach. Now we’re both wet and she still needs her iv. One of the nurses bring Ellie a hospital gown to change into and I just deal with the urine on the front of me because, well it’s the least of my worries in the moment.

It takes myself and three nurses to hold my daughter down while they stick her with an iv. Only now, they want to put an iv in both of her hands out of fear she may be suffering from ketoacidosis. Now both iv’s are in, we wait for lab work to come back and wait to be admitted. When the Dr comes in with results, she is surprised that Ellie in fact does not have ketoacidosis. This means that she doesn’t need to be admitted to the ICU but does still need to be admitted to flush out the ketones and for us to learn how to manage her diabetes. While only one parent was allowed to stay with our daughter through the night, we both still needed to be very present to learn everything in such a short period of time. The hospital is no fun for anyone, so if we could prevent our son from spending a lot of time there we would. Almost as soon as I asked my mom for her help, her and my stepdad were in the car headed down from Utah.

My daughter while she was in the hospital

My daughter spent the next five days in the hospital. There were so many finger sticks, labs and insulin shots every single day. My daughter had some PTSD from the ER still, so she didn’t do well with any of it. I mean who can blame her? All of a sudden, my 5-year-old had to get a shot after each meal, which she quickly caught onto by the way. She would cry, she would run, she would beg and plead. She would do anything to avoid it. I know I’m not alone in this feeling when I say if I could take it all away from my daughter and give it to myself I would.

By the time our daughter was discharged and okay to come home we were one week out from the movers coming to our home to pack up and take all of our things. I couldn’t process the thought of having to drive across the country with a newly diagnosed diabetic daughter. My husband and I were driving separate cars. How was I supposed to drive, feed my daughter, count her carbs and give her insulin. To add to it we had no idea where we were going to live. I just couldn’t leave; it was too soon and too much. By the grace of God my husband was able to extend his report no later out another month so we could try to get a handle on this new lifestyle.

Now here we are in New York. My daughter has a Dexcom to track her blood sugar 24/7 (no more finger sticks, Yay!) She should also get an insulin pump soon so that means no more shots. Both kids are back in public school and thriving. (For those of you that didn’t know I home schooled my son while we lived in Vegas). My daughters school nurse is incredible and takes wonderful care in managing Ellie’s diabetes while she’s at school. She even got us in touch with another type 1 family. The boy is only one year older than Ellie and it’s so heartwarming to see both kids really feel a connection with someone who understands exactly what they’re going through. They are also a military family and don’t plan to be here much longer which is a bummer, but we will enjoy the time we do have left with them.

New York is the complete opposite of Las Vegas, (but I don’t need to tell you that) which has been an adjustment for all of us. However, overall, I think everyone is pretty happy. With the kids in school full time, I have more time for myself. I also feel like I’ve lost so much of myself and who I was. At the start of 2022 I had high hopes and dreams for this blog and my sewing. In the same sense I feel like 2022 burned all those dreams to the ground. I’ve been so out of the loop in the sewing world. But at the end of the day family comes first and is the most important. While I know this entire post has nothing to do with sewing, I wanted to share where I’ve been and maybe also spread awareness about diabetes, I’m shocked about how little diabetes is talked about and what to look out for. I never once had my children’s pediatrician talk about diabetes or see a flyer, nothing. Had it not been for mothers’ intuition, who knows how ill Ellie would have become before we finally took her in to be checked.

My sewing logo made into a shirt.

Anyway, I started this blog to share what I love, which is SEWING. It’s an outlet for me, a form of stress relief (sewing and writing this up, gosh do I feel good sharing this with whoever wants to listen to me). Every day brings new opportunities so I’m trying to look forward and not dwell. I hope to sew through my stash of fabric this year (okay maybe not through all of it because that’s A LOT), sew up patterns I’ve purchased but not yet given a chance. That is what I hope to bring to my blog this year. Show that we don’t need to collect fabric, it doesn’t give me anything by just sitting there. Okay, it does give me one thing, anxiety on where to put it all (again, I have a lot. I’ve run out of places to put said fabric) and it taunts me when I don’t have the time to sew, but I think I’m speaking for all seamstresses when I say that. Fabric is for creating, not collecting. The only exception I will make for myself is allowing myself to buy holiday fabrics for my kiddos. Okay, and maybe swim if they can’t fit into last years. But that’s it, I hope I mean it! I know this was quite long, so I give my sincere thanks to those who stuck around to the end. I hope to be back with more soon (with more sewing that is!) Always be true and always be you.

Until next time,