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Spending Re-cap: May

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Our spending re-caps for the months will focus only on our variable spending and include the following categories:
Family (includes all the stuff we spend on the kids such as activities anything we buy them and their education savings. Any graphs I may post with include daycare, but the numbers will not)Home Expenses (anything we spend on the house for the maintenance, taxes and insurance. I'm not including mortgage payments or interest as that will not be included in our final FI number so I want to be able to track what life costs without that. Keep in mind graphs will include the mortgage, but not in the numbers)Transportation (all car related expenses such as gas, maintenance, insurance)Utilities (heat, water, electricity, Internet, phone and cell phones)Health Spending (Life insurance, dentist other health related costs. This is pretty low because we live in Canada)Enjoyment (Gifts, Entertainment, Vacations, Hobbies, Restaurants, Alcohol, etc.)Routine Expenses (Groceries, Clot…

Job Hunting Limbo

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I've been off work since my contract ended at the end of 2018 and unfortunately the job that I assumed was a sure thing fell through leaving me currently job hunting and hoping something will come up soon.

Job hunting, when unemployed, is always a bit demoralizing as you put yourself out there and wait for responses. Hope someone likes what you have to offer and that you can make a good impression. One thing that I'm extremely grateful though is for our financial position in that I don't need to work, but rather choose to. This gives me the freedom to not stress financially while hunting. However that doesn't take away the feelings of depression that creep in while waiting in limbo for the next next opportunity to start.

I was honestly fine for the first few months, got two verbal offers shortly after starting my search, I decided to go for one of them, however for reasons out of the hiring department's control, everything has been put on hold for the foreseeable f…

A Few Frugal Things

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My current limbo has been dragging me down a bit. I'm trying to stay positive and keep myself productive so I can feel like I'm accomplishing something with my days and not wasting my time checking and rechecking various social media. Bonus most of these things are some frugal wins...
Planted my garden this weekend. Hoping that these tiny plants will provide lots of fresh produce over the summer. Less frugal was having to buy some fencing to go around them as the bunnies have been eating all my plants. Spent $80 on the netting and stakes but should be able to use it again over the next couple years. 

Planted lots of tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, lettuce, green beans, carrots and beets. I did go out and buy a few few seedlings ($30) after the plants I grew were looking pretty sad and wind battered.

Getting creative with our leftovers instead of succumbing to the desire to get take out. Had some leftover spaghetti sauce and pulled chicken I'd made earlier in the week so tr…

Spring/Fall Jacket for Miss Bird

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After finishing up the muslin I added another inch to the patter pieces and made up Jalie 2795 for MissBird using the fleece I bought from Discovery Trekking Fabrics.


During the week I ordered Discovery Trekking was running a promotion providing a remnant that they had washed and dried. They couldn't sell these pieces as they were too dirty, but once laundered a very nice gift indeed. The cotton lycra they added to my order was the perfect coordinate for this fleece. Good thing too, as the fabric is so thick that I broke a couple serger needles trying to go over double seams. I would never have gotten through it if I used fleece for the waistband and collar. 
 I love how this jacket came out, except for the fact that I didn't add enough length above the pockets so they sit pretty high on MissBird! Grr. So close!!!
Other than that this jacket is lovely. The fabric is so soft and dense that it feels like wearing a blanket. I can't wait to sew up my version. 
One small additi…

Jalie Nikita

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Finally I get to share some of the patterns I was fortunate enough to test for Jalie this past winter. Hardest part is not sharing anything till they are released in the Spring!

First up is Nikita. 



Description: Tank with front yoke and keyhold racer back. The unique hem is easy to sew and adds a modern touch to the garment. Swing Dress, mid-thigh lenght, with closed racer back. Armholes on both views finished with bands. 
This is such a cute top/dress and I can't wait to make one for me. I made two for my daughter. The pattern calls for very drapy fabrics, and the first version I made had a bit more body, but I figured it would be ok in a child size. Adult size I'd definitely wouldn't want this sticking stiffly out from my body.

My daughter is 5 and wears a size 5 in RTW but in Jalie Sizes is an F (size 2) with extra length added. To the first version I added 2 inches, but this only makes it tunic length. I added 4 or 5 inches to the 2nd version seen below.

A few details:…

Jalie Charlotte

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I love a classic cardigan and the one I have has started to wear through the elbows and I've been thinking it might be time to replace it. So when the opportunity came to test Jalie's new pattern Charlotte I jumped at it as it is the perfect classic cardigan.

With my sewing abilities being roughly intermediate, I love the fact that Jalie has ALL THE SIZES because it means I can make a first garment for my daughter, trying out the techniques in the smaller sizes. If I screw up royally it's only a small amount a fabric. If it's just small mistakes, she'll grow out of it in less than a year and by the time I make my version I know where to slow down and take a bit extra care.


I made the cropped version without buttons and love it on her. It's such a cute little sweater and I need to make one for myself very soon. I should have probably added buttons but I have yet to master that skill on my sewing machine and didn't want to ruin it at the last step. Also it…

Jalie Alex

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As mentioned in a previous post we were woefully under dressed for camping in the mountains last summer so I've been a little obsessed with warm sweaters for this year. I was so excited to be chosen to test Jalie's Alex and it just feels like the perfect camping/cozy sweater and will be making a ton of these over the years with 3 kids!

I love this pattern. I unfortunately didn't pick the best fabric for my first version as the scale of the pattern was just a bit too large and I failed miserably with pattern matching. I'll be watching a few youtube videos to figure out how to do that properly on my next version. The cut off animals on this one are really bugging me. I keep reminding myself that many RTW pattern matching is often worse. 






 Despite the pattern issues I love this pattern. I just made up a version for myself and it is super cozy.  I did make a few alterations to this wearable muslin. I made a Size S grading to U at the hips and added an inch to the length. I…