Sewing Dresses

A while ago, amidst the move and before the NW trip, a bunch of women from my church gathered to make Little Dresses for Africa - or, more specifically, Little Dresses for the Dominican Republic.

The idea started when Karen found out about the initiative – littledressesforafrica.org. She mentioned it to me during one of our leadership committee meetings since she knew that I sewed. We pulled the website up to look more closely at what it entailed; we decided it was totally something that we could do. So the word was sent out to some of the ladies in our community, and we set a date

The dresses themselves are simple to make. You start with a pillowcase and shorten it according to size, cut armholes, add elastic and sew on the bias tape straps. Of course, some creativity was needed to make the dresses look snazzier, so we added embellishments – ribbons, buttons, pockets, rickrack, flowers and the like.

The original organization sends dresses to orphanages in Central Africa, which then distribute them out to little girls. Since Reunion (our church) has been doing mission trips to the Dominican Republic for the last 3 years, we decided to send our dresses there instead. They were hand-delivered to Pastor Luis who will give them out to needy families in the area that have little girls.

It was fun getting together to work on a project like that. I had no idea that so many women in our community sewed and would be up for spending their Saturday doing something like this. But they're simple and it was fun to do; if you sew, you should think about doing it too.

The dresses aren’t the most elaborate pieces of clothing, but they’re fun and colorful. They are something that will brighten a child’s day and make them feel a little girly. Their new dress will, hopefully, be something they’re proud to say is their own.

our model, just to see how the dresses looked on :)


Soccer game. Bases loaded.

Last week we caught the first soccer game at Fenway Park in forty something years. And the only time we'll have tickets behind home plate in our lifetime.

Which is right about the time everyone in America starting liking American Idol and despising anything foreign or with a funny accent.

But with our blood still surging with World Cup love and tickets going below face, we loaded up the subway and Kay and went over to watch powerhouses Celtic Football Club of the Scottish Premier League and Sporting Clube de Portugal from the Portuguese Liga battle to a tie that was only resolved in a shootout.

Oh yeah, and Marianna got bangs!


Pac(nw)ed Out

It’s been a minute since we’ve gone on a vacation to anyplace that doesn’t end in –ama or –olina. And with the record setting temperatures setting in on the East Coast (which we realized we wouldn't quite escape), we decided it was fine time to skip up to the Pacific Northwest.

We flew out to Portland, and Josh came and picked us up and drove us to Corvallis. We were introduced to the latest and greatest family member, Oliver, and we proceeded to do a bunch of family things that families do around the 4th of July, if the family is meta-outdoors and loves beer (the parents, not the kiddies, as far as beer goes).

Corvallis was spent white water rafting on the North Santiam (above), picking raspberries, firework shopping and firework exploding, crabbing (not successfully though) in Newport, beer drinking, and a wee bit of hiking.

After that, we caught the Amtrak north to Portland, just in time to arrive for days with temperatures reading 93, 95 and then on our day of departure, 99.

We stayed at the uber-hip Ace Hotel, a place known mainly for it's swagger and cred, as much as it's Stumptown coffee in the basement. Walked around town a lot and watched some World Cup semis, did some shopping, a lot of sweating, caught some time in at Powell books, drank some microbrews, watched Toy Story 3, wore ourselves out and found the world's greatest doughnuts at VooDoo (that's Marianna eating a chocolate/oreo/peanutbutter one).

Then trained it again, this time up to Seattle to see Ian and Lori and meet their adorable (loud) twins, Jane and Sylvie. We were there four days, and did a lot of chilling, which is what you do when your friends are juggling not one, but two, little bundles of joy.

Played some bocce in Gasworks park, more amazing beers, Freemont markets, organic eats at Tilth, Ballard, a doughnut off at Top Pot (I think VooDoo wins), BABIES!, tv watching, sleeping, game-playing (which we do far less now that we don't live by those guys) and cooking.

Once we made it back to the East coast and the jet lag wore off and I was able to finally, FINALLY, catch up with a regular sleep schedule after four days, I realized that the mystique that the PacNW had for me is less there now that I live in Boston. I was dead-set on moving out to Portland at some point in my life, but now that I live in a hip big city, and have a great church, and some good friends, and the proximity to the rest of New England, I realize that I got all I need up here.

Except for those folks who we visited and unsuccessfully tried to convince to move here.


Date night at Fenway.

Or dollar tacos right beside Fenway.


West Coast Happy Hour.

Drinks in Seattle. Wish you all were here. But we'd need a bigger table...


Thursday night sewing club

First rule: you don't discuss sewing club.