Friday, December 30, 2011

So Christmas has come and gone and part of me wants to write a moving and comprehensive composition about the emotions involved in our first post-treatment holiday season. But a bigger part of me is tired. And lazy. And content to leave the bulk of those emotions trapped in their little hiding spot - a spot which has become more reliable as a holding cell over the past few months, allowing me many greatly needed days of peace. But a spot, nonetheless, which still has only tenuous control over the monster it contains and must be closely monitored. Wow - those last two sentences took a turn I wasn't expecting. Anyway, back in sanity-land, as I was saying - the bigger part of me - the lazy part is winning out. So I'm going to go for a minimalist approach and try to sum it all up with one photo and a short description:
 This is Daniel and me on Christmas day. And yes - he is wearing a Santa suit, in case you were wondering. It was a blast watching him experience his first Christmas. It was also exhausting watching him experience his first Christmas. Or rather, it was exhausting watching everyone watch him experience his first Christmas - wishing I had gotten to experience it as a parent rather than an aunt. Feeling relegated to a life of being the next best thing. Worried that I don't matter as much as I would if I brought a child to the mix. Ashamed of myself for worrying about it. And the cycle goes on and on.

So to sum up: Christmas was about 80% fun/cozy/happy/relaxing and only about 20% anxiety/longing/aching/less-than-ness. I'd call that a success. 

Thursday, December 1, 2011


We made owl hats for Kara's 8-year-old twin nieces. I think they're owlfully cute. Ugh....I know, I know - but I had to. :) Initially I wasn't totally on board with Kara's color choices - I was worried that white yarn and pink eyes might look a tad albino-y. But she was right - they ended up looking wintery and girly - exactly what we were going for!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Whooooo's There?

Ollie the Owl - Sold at Birds of a Feather Fair

Hi Friends! Hopefully there are still some of you out there! I know I've really been slacking with the blog posting lately. There are so many things to focus on right now that I keep forgetting some of them! We are deep in the midst of holiday custom order crafting, plus we have a lot more holiday festivities to attend this year. 

I'm excited by the latter, but also a little overwhelmed. Even though we're somewhat more settled this year from an infertility standpoint (as in we are not in the midst of surgeries and procedures and have moved out of that life phase) we're still not "over" it by any means. Last year we kind of skipped the entire season, keeping our heads down and busying ourselves with craft shows and travel, in an effort to insulate ourselves from the real world. This year we are dipping our toes back in.....cautiously. And we have no idea how we will fare emotionally. On one hand, we want to live life and have fun and enjoy our family and friends. On the other, we're afraid of looking too put together and not receiving the leeway we still need in these situations. The fact is, I'm still adjusting to the new dynamics in my extended family created by my sister becoming a mother. It is difficult for me to see my family members doting on her as a mother figure, even though I love having my nephew around. And Randy's extended family is big and ever expanding - many small children including a newborn, and at least one very pregnant person, for good measure.   While both of our families are supportive and understanding of our situation, we're all still learning. We are now in uncharted territory and there are no social norms for us to fall back on. 

I guess I need to make an open plea for patience from everyone I encounter this season. I may look more put together than last year, but I'm still recovering from something that nearly tore my heart in two, and that is a slow process. I'm going to give myself permission to take breaks from the action when I start to feel a little unglued and I'm going to try and remember the things about me that are worthwhile and good even when they are all covered up by my feelings of inadequacy that stem from my childless status. Hopefully, I will come out on the other side. :)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Working our knitting fingers to the bone to get ready for the Birds of a Feather Fair tomorrow! Check out this sweet daisy hat. Body knitted by Randy, flower crocheted by me (who knew I could crochet something more than a chain)!

Friday, November 4, 2011

I almost can't stand this guy, he's so cute. I've been wanting to make a snowman hat for a while now - but was kind of intimidated. But in the end it was really no big deal. I see many more in my future!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Green Bean

This is a Randy original creation that we call the Green Bean hat. He made about 4 of these several months ago, and now its finally time to debut them! We gave one with earflaps to Daniel - now that its getting cooler out we can get a few action shots to share soon!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Squirrel's Delight

I've been wanting to make an acorn hat for over a year now and finally got around to it!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Ollie the Owl Hat

Meet Ollie! I think he's super cute with a little smack of creepy. :) He will debut at the Birds of a Feather Fair on Sunday, but you can order another just like him in any color combo you'd like at Hitched and Stitched's Website!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Sweet Treats

Happy Halloween from Hitched and Stitched! Halloween is one of our favorite times of year around these parts (aka our living room). We love wearing costumes, eating caramel apples and popcorn, watching Garfield's Halloween Adventure, and knitting by the light of our (fake) jack o'lanterns. We're gearing up for the Birds of a Feather Fair on Nov. 6 -so for the rest of the week, H&S Blog (Hitched and Stitched - trying out a new abbreviation!) will be featuring a new product each day that you might see at our booth as we count down to the fair. But we couldn't skip over Halloween - so we'll kick things off with pics of some sweet treats we made last week. (These were one-time-only treats - you won't be seeing them at the fair - sorry!)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Busy Little.....Birds

Hello out there! Anyone still around? We're finally back from our LOOOONG summer blog break and we're working our little feathers off, getting ready for our ONLY craft show of the season, Birds of a Feather Fair on November 6. Check out the link - Hitched and Stitched  is featured on their site today!

Why only one fair? Last year our every-weekend-fair-hopping season was fun, but exhausting and we just weren't up for it this year. We're going to focus more on custom orders and online business. Why THIS fair? We chose Birds of a Feather Fair because its the first modern handmade craft fair in Northern Kentucky and its in its fledgling stages - this will be its inaugural year. We are super excited about supporting a burgeoning modern craft movement in our back yard and we hope everyone in the area will come and do a little early holiday shopping on November 6 at the Florence Hilton!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer Berries

So I know that I am SUPER late for the 4th of July - blame it on camp season - but I'm posting about our dessert anyway. We had a really low-key Independence Day weekend, spending most of it cleaning (you're jealous, I know), but we did stop working long enough for a mini cook-out. I thought we should have something festive, so I threw together these berry "parfaits". Parfaits is probably a generous way to describe them, because they consisted only of layers of strawberries, blueberries, and Cool Whip. Maybe I'll call it a Lazy Girl Parfait. Anyway, I thought they were pretty, so I took photos!

Friday, July 1, 2011

How to Make a Chocolate Chip-Oreo Love Child

I can't take credit for this idea - I saw it on Pinterest a while back and even as a non-chocolate-lover I stopped to take notice. I can, however take credit for the brilliant idea (because I'm sure I'm the first person in the history of the planet to have this idea) of using 100% store-bought ingredients. I executed this diabolical plan around 2 am the night before/day of Randy's birthday and I just happened to have my trusty new iPhone with me to document the process:

Step 1: Get a husband or friend who likes chocolate to have a birthday. Or I suppose you could make them for yourself if you yourself like chocolate for some reason.

Step 2: Buy a package of Double Stuff Oreos and some chocolate chip cookie dough. For maximum laziness purposes, I suggest the type of dough that is already pre-formed into perfect cookie portions. Also, if you happen to have some Hershey Bars lying around the house leftover from your husband's last go around with s'mores (since you don't like s'mores, even if it makes you a bad Girl Scout), go ahead and throw those into the mix, for garnish.

Step 3: Get the chocolate chip cookie dough ball ready for its big date by slimming down a bit (flatten it with the palm of your hand). Then, gingerly introduce the Oreo, ensuring that you provide them plenty of time for small talk and to get to know each other.

Step 4: This next part could get a bit awkward, as you are going to introduce a third party to the romance. Place another flattened chocolate chip cookie dough ball on top of the Oreo. Don't worry - they'll grow to love each other in time.

Step 5: Much like at a middle school dance, you will need to encourage mingling. Smoosh the sides of the cookies together, completely encasing the Oreo in a chocolate chip cookie bear-hug. Repeat Steps 3 - 5 until you run out of chocolate chip cookie dough. Then eat a couple of the leftover Oreos and remember how much you like them, despite their chocolatey nature.

Step 6: Place your Hershey Bar garnishes on top and put your Frankenstein cookie creations into the oven that you preheated even though I didn't tell you to, because you are proactive.  While you wait, eat a couple more Oreos and perform the "experiment" wherein you make a quadruple stuff Oreo out of two Double Stuff Oreos.

<quadruple stuff Oreo not pictured due to extreme distraction caused by eating quadruple stuff Oreo>

Step 7: Check on your little darlings after about five minutes. Most likely, they have become unruly and started spreading all over the place, trying to morph into unattractive blobs (similar to how I'm starting to look after eating the quadruple stuff Oreos). Crack the whip - that is to say - the spatula! Get those cookies back in line and mold them into round, respectable fellows.

Step 8: Leave your cookies in the oven a little longer than the package recommends, since you have more than doubled their size. Keep checking on them and when they look golden delicious, snatch them up (use a potholder). Once they've cooled, place them on a cute red plate and admire.

Step 9: Try to resist the urge to cut a cookie in half to see it in all its glory. Resistance is futile - cave in and cut away.

Step 10: (Even though the process is essentially complete, you have to have a Step 10 because the ever expanding Mr. Monk part of your brain absolutely WILL NOT tolerate having only 9 steps.) Be glad that you went ahead and cut a cookie open once you see how scrumptious it looks in the photo. Be seduced by the scrumtiousness and take a bite only to discover that its just too much chocolate for you. Decide to leave the rest for your husband or chocolate-loving friend and stick to the safe confines of Oreos. Delight in watching their head nearly explode when they see the awesomeness you have created for them.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Birthday Adventure Time

Feeling kinda lazy lately + lots of other things to do = photo heavy blog posts here at Hitched and Stitched. Randy and I are currently in the process of taking back our lives (we'll let you know when this has happened) and hope to get into some kind of regular posting routine soon. Until then, we hope you enjoy looking at lots of pictures. Actually the pictures are probably better because, as you know - each one is worth 1000 words - so this post is technically something like 14,000 words long. Sweet - now I don't feel like a slacker at all. I'm actually an overachiever!

Anyway, please (try to) enjoy a photo tour of the official 2011 Hitched and Stitched Birthdays. (For those of you who don't know, Randy and I were born exactly 7 days apart in the same year, so June includes a LOT of combined celebrating.) We've moved passed getting each other many traditional gifts on birthdays/anniversaries/Christmas in favor of a fun big purchase for both of us to enjoy or special trips/activities. We MUCH prefer this system. This year we decided to each plan a surprise day of fun for each other and we both ended up centering our activities around a theme all day. Without further ado, our birthday outings in 2 parts:

Part One: Randy

For Randy's birthday we were sent on a scavenger hunt by Doc Brown who was inexplicably trapped without a flux capacitor in a year he couldn't identify. He needed Randy to follow the clues he sent to deduce his whereabouts in time. Spoiler Alert: the year was 1979 (which coincidentally is the year Randy and I were born). The day included stops all over the tri-state accompanied by a soundtrack of Billboard Top 100 hits from 1979. Here's a peek from the day:

Part Two: Kimmie

The overall theme for my birthday was "A Very Pinteresting Birthday" because I am supremely addicted to the website Pinterest - a kind of online bullitin board where you can "pin" and organizes images you like from anywhere online onto different boards you create. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes. Also, it allows you to browse pinboards created by other friends and even other random people. Basically, its an internet black hole that sucks up WAY too much of my time (and even more now that I have the iPhone app). Randy realized it is also an excellent tool for figuring out what someone is interested in without having to ask them and spoil surprises. He created a pinboard on Pinterest just for my birthday that gave me clues as to what would be happening throughout the day.

The theme of our outing for the day was PIZZA CRAWL! Randy realizes that my first true love was pizza - and he knows how to use it to get straight to my heart. We sampled pizza from three different restaurants around the area and made local touristy stops between each to let the previous pizza digest a bit. Our favorite pizza was the Barbecue Chicken White Pizza from Mt. Adams Pizza and Deli, and our favorite stop was the Cincinnati Art Museum to see the Circus Poster exhibit.

We have declared our birthday adventures raging successes and we loved the Pizza crawl idea so much that we want to plan all kinds of crawls. Ideas so far include: ice cream crawl, park crawl, museum crawl, Chinese food crawl. Stay tuned for more!

Thursday, June 16, 2011


I know I haven't been around much lately, but most of June was a blur for me because of this place. Please enjoy a brief photographic essay on Girl Scout Outreach Day Camp. (Special shout out goes to Miss Sara Marksberry - my trusty side-kick through the somewhat rocky but always entertaining 2nd week!)

In the dining hall - one of the things I love about the camp is the advanced age of many of the structures. Makes me feel like I'm in The Parent Trap. (You know, the real one with Hayley Mills.)

One day for lunch we were served hot dogs. On hamburger buns. I understand that they are the same as a hot dog buns only in a different shape (like spaghetti and penne). But try explaining that with any success to a picky 6 year old who is already leery of the "burn marks" on the nicely grilled dog.

During our second week the camp ranger was setting this up for a group coming in the week after us. We had no idea that we owned such a thing. Now that the cat's out of the bag, I think we might be requesting this next year. I think it would make an excellent home base for the directors :).

One thing at lunch that nearly everyone ate happily. I say nearly everyone because I don't particularly like watermelon. (Please send your hate mail to

Ahh- tie dye. The craft I have a love-hate relationship with. I run the tie dye station every year. And every year I HATE tie dye while I'm setting up the gallons of water that must be carried from the dining hall out to the picnic tables and mixing the endless bottles of dye which gets EVERYWHERE and soaking and wringing out hundreds of t-shirts in the soda ash solution that dries out my hands and comforting a panicked child who just got dye on her pants after she was REPEATEDLY warned not to walk around the table with the dye bottle in hand and finally convincing skeptical girls to WEAR GLOVES only to watch them take the gloves off when finished with their shirt and then dip their hands into the puddles of dye leftover on the tables because it "looked fun". And then the next day I start to forget all of that and begin daydreaming about what dye designs I'll use next year. And when next year rolls around I'll sign up for the fun all over again.

This long and painstaking process which results in to weeks during which we bus girls out to the wilds of camp from their city neighborhoods is so involved and full of stories that I can't even begin to chronicle it all here. But I will leave you with my most potent memory of camp this year - what will affect ME (not just the Work Me). This year we had a very high number of girls who came to camp without something important that they needed. Particularly bathing suits and/or shorts. A tiny little fire cracker of a girl named London told me she forgot her suit the first day so I gave her some shorts and a shirt we had in our "extras" stash to swim in that first day. The next day she told me she forgot her suit AND the clothes I had given her and could she please have some more clothes to swim in. After some digging we learned that she didn't just forget her suit - she doesn't own one. We were able to get her a suit on the third day and when I called her over to give it to her she took one look at it and screamed. "Its PINK! And I can keep it?!?" I nodded yes and the smile she flashed actually gave me goosebumps. She attacked me with a bear hug adding, "my momma's gonna be SO happy!"

While London's reaction was by far the most dynamic, her situation was not particularly unique. We'd notice a girl wearing heavy, too-big jeans (the same pair each day) in 90 degree heat and find out from her leader that she also didn't bring a bathing suit. We'd investigate and learn that she doesn't own a suit OR shorts. In every case we were able to provide the missing clothing article and allow the girls to feel normal - one of the group. Perhaps the most striking situation we had like this was that of Maria. She was about 6 years old, face-meltingly adorable, enthusiastic, teensy-tiny, and spoke very broken English. She came to camp the first day (90 degree high) wearing a a school uniform shirt, school uniform pants, and heavy sneakers that were at least twice as big as her actual feet. We asked her if she had shorts or a t-shirt she could wear the next day but we weren't sure how much she was comprehending. The next day she arrived wearing the same shoes and pants and, instead of a short sleeved uniform shirt she wore a long sleeved turtle neck. We found shorts and a t-shirt for her. And this sort of thing just kept happening - at a rate about 9 times higher than in previous years.

Randy and I were discussing this trend, these girls, and I told him about one of our volunteers who helped us get many of the bathing suits we handed out. She is involved in her city community center and with various social programs where she routinely encounters kids who don't have basic stuff they need (proper shoes, bathing suit, shorts etc.). So she makes it a point in her everyday life to look for kids and teen bathing suits (among other items) at yard sales and thrift stores and whenever she finds them she buys them all up, takes them home and washes them, and maintains a stash to pull from whenever she finds a kid who needs something. We were bowled over by how amazingly simple but potentially life changing this one little act could be. Sure, a bathing suit doesn't sound life changing at first gander. But think about it. Think about being a kid. At a community center with a pool. And you have no bathing suit. Many pools have rules against wearing street clothes in the water. So you're out. Ineligible. You will miss out on all of those experiences so fundamental to childhood in the summer. You will feel alienated and deprived. You will feel different. When you think about it like that, a bathing suit can be life changing. And it just takes someone like me, who makes enough money to buy a bathing suit AND a pool membership AND a trip to Florida to spend pocket change and spare time to make it happen. My question to myself is: Why would I NOT do something like this?!?
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