colour me: in love

Can the eyes absorb this much cuteness at once?

Our friend's gorgeous chocolate daughter... and our vanilla son... sweetness overload!
It just makes me want to start singing: "Jesus looooves the little children, all the children of the world..."

Love is colour blind isn't it?
It looks past the skin, the race, the education, the social class... and embraces each soul as precious.

Oh, and these two.
Our Hudson, our Azriel.
My heart doubled in size.
Sun and sand in their hair and leaves dancing overhead.

Colour me in love,
Mel ;o)


Unplugging (+ giveaway WINNER!)

This bird is flying the coop.

Well... I'm technically unplugging from the Internet for the next week!
I've got a few colourful posts lined up for you while I'm off radar... so you're still welcome to pop by the nest here (I just won't be responding as usual to messages).

In other news, a giveaway WINNER!
Thanks to all of you sweet souls that said such kind.encouraging.humbling comments... I'm honored to be a place that inspires or entertains you...
...I wish you could all win these goodies for how lovely you are to me!
But who's name did I randomly pull from the cookie jar you ask?
(who coincidentally happened to interview me on her blog recently!)

Farewell for now tweet.hearts, see you again on July 1st!

Closing the laptop, opening to the summer,
Mel ;o)


thrifty & nifty threads: upcycled fashion #5

 Hi friends!
Here's another edition of taking some thrifted old threads and upcycling them into something nifty.  Today it's a light lace top for summer.
Lately this hot.humid weather is feeling like a bear hug from a sweaty sumo wrestler...ick.
I was looking for something easy.breezy. to stitch and wear.

 Two vintage lace squares (scarves?) would do the trick.
Here's a peek at this fast and frugal project: 

 Place the lace squares together (facing in) and run a stitch up the sides, as well as the shoulders.  Leave room for armholes and your head!
Now you knew I'd have to include doilies too, didn't you?  I cut out a couple lil' darlings to add a finishing touch to the shirt here:

 You can gather the shoulder area with that fancy term called a basting stitch, and sew secure afterwards.  I used the doilies as belt loops on the side hip area of the shirt.  Cute, right?!

This was a fun. simple. sewing project for even a hack like me, hope it inspires you to beat the heat too.  Imagine using all sorts of colourful thrifted scarves for these tops?!

Happy upcycling friends,

the doily diva,
Mel ;o)
P.S.  You can catch up on the previous episodes here

P.P.S.. this is your LAST day to enter the GIVEAWAY ---------->>


sew cute...

Recent stitchery projects for the kidlets here:
A fabric booster seat for my daughter... which she affectionately refers to as her "big girl chair".

I simply cut a square of thick foam cushion (from an old bus seat!), grabbed some bright turquoise vinyl for the top and green bird/leaf upholstery fabric for the sides... sewed a basic box pattern, and slipped foam in. Done!
I also stitched in laces at the back to tie to any chair.
Another recent project:
Reversible toddler hats (matching gingham pattern inside for brother & sister).
Now let's all gasp in unison - I actually followed a pattern!
Azriel's hat has the grey and hot pink kitty design.
Hudson gets the camouflage motorcycles on his.

Seeeeeeeeeeeeewww cute!!

the fun.fabric.family,
Mel ;o)


confession: caught in the clash of contradicting character.

 Do you ever feel like a walking oxymoron?
A crazy combination of opposites?
I know I do.

Like the list of traits seen above... my character holds both extremes,
I'm just not sure if that means I'm balanced ... or have a split-personality! ha.

Those who know me probably laugh when I say I'm introverted,
since I'm also a very outgoing person... I think of myself as an introverted-extrovert.
Like a battery operated drill, I'm feisty for a short-term outing, but soon need to get back in the nest to really recharge.

 What this looks like in reality is that one side of me is constantly filling up my day planner with friends to visit... while the other half of me wants to lock the door and hide away.
That's normal right?

Weird part is, I pursue introverts as friends (maybe I like the challenge of drawing them out of their caves too!).  Some of my pals could even teach the Witness Protection Program a few lessons in 'going off radar'.  But, I'm pretty relentless in harassing tracking them down for a cup of tea.
Deep down it's because I think us introverts struggle to get 'out' sometimes. 
We want to connect... but the process seems so daunting. 
Trick is, we need to connect.
Like I wrote before about community, I believe our souls were created for it.
The least we can do is try to help each other by reaching out instead of crossing our arms in the safety.security.silence of our own cages.

Especially in this day and age.
It's becoming all to common to have a gazillion 'friends' online... but not have one person you can sit across a table with and talk to.
We are the generation of worldwide relationships, but no one within walking distance.
Social, but secluded.
A dangerous clash of contradictions in my opinion. 

Don't get me wrong, I love this forum for connecting with you lovelies!
And I think a lot of introverted folk make wonderful bloggers.

I'm just preaching (at myself mainly) to make sure it doesn't replace the daily effort to step up and step out... and embrace the hearts around me.

So how about you?
Are you an inny or an outy?  

Peeking out on purpose,
Mel ;o)

P.S: there's still a few days left to enter my giveaway!



 Hooooos a happy hoot hoarder?!
This mama.
Truth be told, I rarely get out to summer yard sales anymore (having kids makes it more challenging to haul them in and out of car seats at every stop).  So you can imagine my delight when Azriel and I walked over to our neighbourhood church's rummage sale and saw this....

 ...a whole tweetin' table of retro owls!!
I may have squealed out loud... and Azi was pretty eager to play with them too.
We carefully chose four of the feathered friends to come back to our nest - all for one shiny dollar - woo hooo! 

They nestled in quite nicely with the rest of my collection.
But, I need to make a better arrangement here...so it's a work in progress for now.

Honestly, I think it's good I don't get out to more rummage sales/thrift stores...
because the hoarder in me just can't refuse such deals (to the chagrin of Mr. Minimalist Ben)!
I'm trying to purge our nest... to de-clutter some spaces, one could go so far as to  say I'm swinging over to the minimalist's side (stop laughing... it's true).

Except for my owl collection of course.
Oh, and my fabric stash. art supplies. doilies and mushrooms/gnomes!

collector - purger
which side are you?

Owl love you either way,
Mel ;o) 



To the Papa of our kidlets:

I know you don't want your pictures plastered all over this blog... 
but some things are too good to keep secret.

Like the handsome gene you passed on to Hudson.
And the dreamer mind you share with Azriel.

You are such a wonderful Daddy to these kids, and we are better for having you in the nest.

Last year I was only guessing we may have four in our crew... but now that we're all here,
we want to say Happy Father's Day to you!




hey, hey it's GIVEAWAY day! [closed]

 Yes friends, I've finally gotten around to hosting another giveaway from the nest here!
I'm excited to share the following handmade treasures with one lucky reader (though I wish I could send a 'love-gift' to each and every one of you!). 

The fact that you - yes you - are reading this blog for the first time, or the hundredth time, is a delight for me.
So, I want to share this giveaway as a thank-you for being here.
Thanks for reading.
For your comments.
Your warmth.
Your support.

I know this blog is a real random 'surprise pack' of all the pondering and projects bouncing around my brain.
So, maybe you come here for d.i.y inspirations, or to see what I've been creating, upcycling, and sewing... or maybe you visit just to marvel at the utter adorableness of these kids (I know that's what keeps me coming back!).
For whatever reason, I'm glad you're here.
Thank you.

On with the giveaway!

 One-of-a-kind, doily.pressed, honey.glazed pottered neck.clay with an antique bronze chain.
 One antique lace&leather neck.lace.... and a felted embroidered brooch.
Plus, a $20.00 gift card to use in the Needle and Nest online SHOP here.

If that tickles your fancy, enter this giveaway!

How to enter:
Since this is a 'thank you' I'm not about to bribe you to follow.link.like.tweet me... 
I just want to hear from you!

It's that simple, leave a comment below saying 'hello' (or any other sweet words to share).
Even if this is the first and only time you comment, I'd just love to know you're here.
*WINNER will be drawn a week from today.... next Friday 22nd!*

Good luck all you lovelies,

Creatively yours,
Mel ;o)

P.S...  Just in case you do want to find me in the worldwide web-sphere you can follow here:


 If you asked my husband, he'd probably tell you I'm the most forgetful person in the world.
In fact, he often says "you're scaring me" when I ask him a question I don't think he's ever answered before (and it turns out I've asked like twelve times before...  supposedly!).
Maybe it's early Alzheimer's ... or I was dropped on my head a few times as a baby.

I try to convince Ben that it's 'ok'... it just means I'm coming to the relationship 'fresh' -
since I've forgotten half of our past!
He wonders if maybe I'm just not listening when he tells me stuff.. 
to which I reply, "pardon?.....".  

I'm not sure what makes 80% of my memory drive flit and fleet away like a dandelion in the wind, but it's a bit baffling sometimes.

 In my defense, my short-term memory is way better!
As a wife... and mother.. to certain unnamed individuals, it's a necessity:

Every day it's "Mommy, where's my________ (toy of choice)"
To which I reply... "It's over there in that bin, next to that box, under the stuffed bear".

Yes, I have memorised the multitude of toys around the house... as well as many theme songs to random kids shows, nursery rhymes and various children's books. 

Every day it's also, "Mel, have you seen my car keys?"
To which I reply, "ummm... I think you put them up on the mantle this time, but if they're not there... check on the washing machine".

I've never known anyone like my guy for his 'ability' to find a new hiding place for his keys every.single.day.  It's a wonder we still get anywhere on time, since it's always a scavenger hunt before we leave the house... and we're usually looking for his wallet too!

So, with my husband's absent-mindedness... and my forgetfulness,
it's a wonder we've got this far!

Maybe it's because he can never lose the key-to-my-heart....(awww).
And a marriage like this is, unforgettable.
Love you Ben.

Mel ;o)



 This topic has been rattling around in my head for a while now, years actually.
Maybe it was even as a child..
I pointed at someone and said:
"Look Mom, they're weird!"
She gently corrected (as she often still does).. "we don't say weird dear, they are just different".

I wonder what is it about humankind that we find it so hard to live up to our name... 
so quick to judge than be gentle
so quick to criticize than to compliment

I know we're all broken people, but do we have to point out the cracks in others to feel like ours are more hidden?
Does it always have to be about 'us' vs.'them'... that by distancing ourselves we are somehow more superiour?  Forgive me for saying 'we' if you think this doesn't apply to you... but in my 30+ years on this planet I'm noticing a habit in our hearts.

Judging is easier than loving.

An example, I used to think Moms with those kids that have a complete tantrum in the store.. were just bad at parenting.
Then I had kids, then I knew... we're trying our best, but the kids still throw fits.
Or the kid who's always causing trouble in the neighbourhood,
smashing toys, harassing others...  'what a punk!' we say.
Then at night I hear his father screaming obscenities at him. 

How about the overweight girl with greasy hair,
maybe she's just got bad 'self-esteem' or can't control her appetite?
Truth is she's been sexually assaulted in the past.. and now hides behind her weight.
She fears to look 'desirable' and risk further abuse.
Just a few horrid examples, terrible moments in my heart where I'm guilty of judging instead of loving.
I think I need this quote tattooed on the back of my eyelids.

I also remember reading a quote about how 'we sin to the degree by which we treat others as objects.. not subjects' ... and that has stuck with me.  If we are simply using people for what they can offer.benefit.provide us... they're objectified. 
A simple example: the cashier at the grocery store... do we interact with them graciously, or grumble at the time it takes for them to ring up our receipt?

Every body has a story.
Let's treat each other that way, especially when we're so prone to judge them by the cover on their 'book'.

Whether they're covered in tattoos, or piercings.
No matter their skin colour.
Regardless of economic standing.
Every soul is precious in the sight of God.
Let's treat others as we wish to be treated.

Personally, I always have a much better day when I choose to flex my heart muscle and love others.  The days I'm weak and settle for judging makes me feel like a puddle of poop in no time.

It's like any habit really, we have to fight to go against it.
(Case in point: cross your arms... notice which way you did it?  Try going the opposite direction now, weird right?)

So it feels strange, awkward... but the more we do it, the easier it gets.
I don't know about you, but I want it to be 'easier' to love others on a daily basis.
I pray the Spirit makes it harder for me to judge others as well... 

That's been on my heart lately,
thanks for letting me rant.

seeking to be mind.full and kind.full mama,
Mel ;o)

Oh, and some outtakes to show I'm still weird different Mom! 

Pretty sure this face is what attracted Ben to me.
Mama-daughter dance party... a.k.a: Mama flails like deranged hippo, Azi hops like a bunny.


Shop the Nest: wooden key charms.

 Hey there friends... I'm still crafting and creating bits and baubles here at the nest.
Today's newest addition to the Shop:

hand painted wood key charms
Sliced, sanded, drilled wood pendants.
Painted, sketched, sealed with care.
Hanging from a small silver key chain loop.
The Family Tree pendant is marked with a heart on one side (or it could be your family name).
On the opposite side the 'rings' of your family are marked by the birthday colours for each person.  This is our family tree in coloured rings seen above.

Woodland delights shared here: Owl & Mushroom key charm.

 Of course there had to be a charm with my beloved Bird's Nest on it, and a red perched bird on the other side (it could be painted as flying instead).

Last, but not least... I'm a little nutty for this Acorn & Squirrel combo.

These double-sided key charms are around the size of a Cndn quarter (1").
$8 Cndn.
FREE shipping. 

Please contact me if you are interested in adding some woodland charm to your set of keys:

Creatively yours,
Mel ;o)


D.I.Y: lady-lumberjack shirt

 Alright ladies, are you ready to get your plaid on?
Time to raid your man's closet and borrow a plaid shirt... grab a meter of ribbon, your sewing machine... and if you want the complete 'look' - an axe!

1. Cut along the top of the shirt, following the natural curve under the armpits of the sleeves.
I cut about an inch above the armpit seam (so we can fold that in as a hem afterwards). 

2. First you want to hem in those armpits sides (the blue stitch).
3. Then if you want to avoid a 'peep show'... stitch down the buttons! (the red stitch).
4. Lastly, fold the top of the shirt down on the inside, sewing a 1" hem to pull your ribbon through.  (the white stitch).

 5. Thread your choice of ribbon through the front and around to the the back of your top.
If you're a pyro you'll love hearing that you can keep a ribbon from unravelling by singeing the edges with a flame!

It's that easy.
Once you've secured the top in the position you like... knot the ribbon and tie in a bow off one shoulder.

Embrace your lady lumberjack plaid power of femininity!

Mel ;o)


thrifty & nifty threads: upcycled fashion #4.

 Wielding an axe just makes any outfit feel more wild!
Welcome to the lady lumberjack line of upcycled clothing... here's the latest version:

 Once again, I chopped up my man's old shirt... and re-created my own airy summer top.
For those of you ladies who want to get your own plaid on... stay tuned for the easy d.i.y!

 It's such a fun and fast project, and makes for the perfect flouncy top for these hot days of summer.  Talk about the axe bringing out the lumberjack in me... looks like I even grew a hairy white goatee in that shot!  (Dear husband.. please don't look at this picture and lose all attraction to me).

Annnnd, here's a flashback to the other plaid shirt re-style.  Remember I wanted to make some sort of labouring outfit thing to wear when I was pregnant with Hudson?  Well, it fits better now.

I feel like a woodland Wonder Woman.

Stay tuned for more thrifty to nifty fashion adventures friends.
(If you want to catch up on previous projects you can click here).

The lady lumberjack,
Mel ;o)


she says the funniest things...

 This girl cracks me up.
You may have thought from the earlier post this week that I was broken down by her... but seriously, 85.9% of the time she's thrilling my world!

Especially at this stage of being a 'two.ddler' where she's trying to say full sentences of sheer genius.  Honestly, every kid should have their own comedy show.

For example, today while I'm breastfeeding Hudson she says:
"Here's a good idea mommy.... I feed Hudson from my belly" (as she rolls up her shirt).

Or, while eating breakfast the other day:
Azi scratches at her diaper..
"oh... there's a doggie in there".
Me: A doggie? Where? In your diaper?!
Az: "Yeah it's biting me.."
Me: What kind of doggie?
Az: "A Biiiiiig dog"...

..she gets out of the chair.. "OH the doggie is under my toes"... pulls off socks... rolls up pant leg to show her scratched knee... "Ohhhh, it's just my boo-boo".

Dogs seem to be the theme lately... since yesterday she walk talking to her 'friend' who was "hiding under the computer"
Who's your friend? I asked her.

"He's a doggie.
He's got green on his pants... cuz he plays golf".

I'm really just writing this all here because I'm terrible at keeping a journal anymore... and this stuff will make my day for years to come!
Hope it brings a smile to your day too,

Happy weekend y'all.
Mel ;o) 



 I like to think of house-sitting as a poor folk's version of vacationing.
So, when Ben's parents were away - we were eager to move in to their home for a stay.cation this week.

 We love it up here... it's surrounded by nature.
It's quiet except for birds chirping and dogs barking and rivers babbling.

 We can explore... mushroom-scavenger-hunts for all.


 Splash.  Snuggle.

Sure the kids are still noisy.. but having a quiet background is such a refreshing change.
We live near a fairly busy intersection... and day by day Ben and I are turning into huffy old people that shake our fists at every loud motorcycle that goes ripping by!

We keep dreaming.talking about living more rural in the future.
For now I live vicariously through blogger friends who share the richness and reality of such homesteading goodness.
Erin captures the simple moments with her lens and shows the beauty in them.
Andrew/Kira capture the fun and hard work required to live so simply.
 Check them out... and be inspired too!


Savoring this stay.cation,
Mel ;o)