I am tired (and other reminiscences)

Still breathing! (MMJ 26)

But victorious. Children arrived, milled around, played, ran, jumped on the trampoline, scraped elbows and knees, bumped each other jumping, got splinters, roasted hot-dogs, opened presents, lined up (!) for ice-cream cake, and  eventually were reclaimed by their parents (even the ones who slept over and were claimed this morning). I am SO thankful for the two friends who stuck by me through it all, and as a bonus the hubbykins was able to get off work a bit early so arrived in time to oversee the present-opening and cake-eating. The sun was warm although the air was cooler (high of 18C); water-balloons were tossed around but I managed to fend off the suggestion that the sprinkler should be put on under the trampoline.  Oh, and Tyo got a hedgehog.

Forgive the poor scan and indifferent photoshopping.

Tomorrow is Syo’s actual birthday. Which means that the photo above was taken eight years ago today. I was having teeny-tiny contractions at ten-minute intervals all through the photo-shoot, and remember wondering if that meant real labour was imminent or if it would just go away on its own. It was still a good ten days before my due-date, but that’s longer than I was pregnant with Tyo. I made the purple choli (cropped shirt) I am wearing and the belt, although you can’t see much of that but the tassles. One very artistic friend drew the designs on my belly in eyeliner and lip pencil.

Purple choli (back view)

My sewing back then was what I’d call “costume grade”—functional, occasionally fancy, but largely devoid of seam-finishes and other fine-touches.

Unfinished seams, showing sideseam including underarm gusset. I did a decent job on the bottom ties/binding, though.

The pattern I used for this was essentially an early version of the one now available from Folkwear, although my A/B cup version lacks the bottom triangles, relying on the magic of bias stretch to fit around the bust. In more recent iterations I adapted it into a full princess-seam in the front, but this version has a straight  over-bust seam. This wasn’t the first choli I made, but it might be the second or third; I had learned (the hard way) to be careful of the bias-stretch on the front neckline and to double-fold my hems at neck and sleeve. I think the fabric was left over from a project I helped my cousin make; the rest of the remnants had become a self-drafted jumper-dress for Tyo, which included a facing (I had never done a facing before).

Earrings

I thought I’d show you a better photo of the earrings I wore the last couple of days, as they’re hand- made (by my mother, granted, not me). The little man is an antique ivory figurine my mother had kicking around forever (I wonder if he originally had something decorative in his navel… the hole in his belly-button is quite deep, but doesn’t go all the way through.) Then in the late eighties or early nineties some family friends returned from Zaire and gave my mom the malachite elephant. This was around the time when everyone was making beaded jewelry (I’ve commented on my mom’s serial crafting before),  so it seemed only natural to hunt down a couple of other beads and create our African earrings. I remember discussing with my mother how the long bone and the round malachite bead echoed the  respective shapes of the two pendants. I miss bouncing design ideas around with her—we used to do it about everything, from clothing to jewelry to the arrangement of furniture in the house. I hope I can have those kinds of conversations with my own daughters soon enough.

Anyway, I should now return to cleaning my house, so that Syo and I can make biscuits (scones for the British readers) and maybe even get started on the teachers’ presents. My kids have between them five teachers who need presents. They’re all wonderful ladies, but it still seems a bit excessive to me. It’s not like they’re middle-schoolers with a teacher for every subject.

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “I am tired (and other reminiscences)

  1. A: What a picture! I’m pretty sure I was not upright at that point of my pregnancy:)
    B: Good for you for surviving the parties–I’m done after about 2 hours!

  2. I’m glad you survived the party! That maternity picture of you is beautiful and I love the lipliner/eyeliner henna tattoo.

  3. you look like you’re 12 in that picture. the party one, i mean. in the preggers one you just look awe inspiring. you know, nothing big, just contractions.

    • Seriously, the tiniest little flutters. Like you wouldn’t even notice except that they kept coming, every ten minutes or so. Both my labours started that way, with hours of these little tiny contractions.

      The big ones, now… let’s just say it may be surprising that my husband still has his eardrums intact. I can take the pain, but I don’t take it quietly.

  4. Okay I reread this post, I think I am missing why you were dressed as you were? Maybe just a a pregnancy photo? The drawing on your tummy your friend did was super!

    Love those ear rings, but then ear rings are the one jewelry I do wear. Nothing else really. Three holes in each ear, I can wear me some ear rings!

    I did think of having my navel pierced but sighh I guess I am to…. erm old for that LOL…

    Sounds like the party was a big success.

    Oh I printed off the shrug pattern! I was tickled to see it was there. I need to buy some fabric for it. I am thinking that will work with my shirred tops, as I saw a pic of a gal wearing a shirred top with a bolero type thing and it looked real cute. So I will try your shrug…

    I am so counting down the days for canning season to end so I can get to some sewing! I am in the mood!

  5. Glad the party went well, and that the husband came home in time for the cleanup :) hehe, I commented on me-made June that I thought you looked tired, and then came here to see your title…!
    Hope you keep some scones for yourselves too. Yup, we call ‘em that too, and our “biscuits” are what you guys call “cookies” When we were in the US and were given scones/biscuits in a restaurant we surprised the waitress by asking for some jam and cream to go with them. Turns out scones are treated as a savoury thing over there…

  6. Holy toledo, busy woman! I’m glad you survived the party. You look like you could use a long nap!

    I love the picture in the belly dancing gear while preggers. What a fantastic picture to have (and snapped just in the nick of time, too)!

  7. Beautiful picture of you in the belly dancing costume! Actually, they’re both great pics, even the “I’m done here, don’t bother me,” one. I don’t think I took any big-belly shots after about 28 weeks with my first (I HATED being pregnant — it was not a good time for me). I had mini contractions forever with Middlest and he was finally induced after I had dilated to 3-4 cm without entering active labor.

    The earrings are beautiful! You and your mom have a good eye. Maybe you could come over and decorate — I lack both the ability to put things together and the desire to learn, ha.

    • I have very few good pictures from my first pregnancy (and several of the ones I do have date from right before one of the biggest blowups of our entire relationship, so they’re hard to look at and feel good about) Fortunately for me, both times those mini-contractions developed into full-blown ones within about 12 hours and I was already 8cm by the time I was admitted at the hospital. I have heard some pretty brutal induction stores :P.

  8. ahhh belly dancing… cool! That explains your outfit :O)…
    I did a little ummm shopping at hot patterns today, ya I ordered that sailor pants pattern. I am a little concerned about the waist being high on them but maybe they will be okay. I need good directions if I am going to attempt something like those shorts you made and I love the pants too so if I like them I can use this pattern for pants as well! Maybe my Aunt can figure out a way to drop the waist and not mess up the style. I would like them to be a bit lower waisted. But we will see. Nope its not the only pattern I bought… I got two others as well. They have some seriously cute patterns!
    As soon as I get this canning behind me I can sew!

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