Home and Away

comments: 63



















I like to stay home but sometimes I really like going out. On Friday we had a super-fun time up in north Portland at Tasty 'n' Sons, Spielwerk Toys, Ink and Peat, and Ruby Jewel. We love to eat out. We take Amelia to a lot of restaurants. She's been going out to eat since she was very wee, and she's always down with it. I take her out to lunch with me quite frequently by myself, but it's really fun when it's the three of us together (and easier, too). Now that the weather is nice it's just so nice to walk around and do stuff all together. The weather on Friday was gorgeous. We bought fancy soaps and a couple of darling little new toys. She had her first ice cream (brown-sugar sour cream — yummmmm). Really great day. I need to remember to take her to different parts of town just to walk around, even if it means driving to get there first. We're getting a bit bored with our own neighborhood day after day after day, and there's just so much else to see.

I finished her Multnomah Falls sweater (except for the buttons) and it's on the blocking board now. I think it came out really pretty. The color is so hard to capture and I don't know why? (Greens are the hardest for me to get right.) It's kind of a classic, dark-moss green. Next on the needles is this one. Reverse stockinette, but in worsted weight. It's already going so fast (being worsted, instead of sport). The yarn I'm using is crazy-gorgeous. Feels like butter compared to the Nature Spun. Amelia's goes to bed between six and seven every night (she is a great sleeper, and has been doing this since she was two months old), so I have several hours of uninterrupted knitting every evening. It's kind of the time where I'm too tired to do anything else (I used to try working, or sewing, or answering emails at night, but it just didn't work well — I am so totally not a night person), so it's really nice to just sit with my feet up and knit (or embroider — I'll tell you about that  little navy-blue dress I'm working on, I keep forgetting) and relax. It's such precious time to me. I'm really lucky for it, I know.

We're having some light-bulb strands installed over our seating area in the back yard, so that we can just turn them on at the garage wall with the flick of a switch. I'm hoping that happens in the next week or two. Summer is here and I just want to be outside before the weather turns scorching and I have to go in and cry in front of the air-conditioner vent. Bah.

***The kitty doll is by Maileg and is from Ink and Peat; the little mouse is by Moulin Roty from Spielwerk Toys (and the mushroom is from Spielwerk, as well). Such adorable toys at both of these places.


Knitting when you're tired? I am filled with admiration! When I'm tired, I'd better not knit! :D

I'm envious of that sleep schedule; my babies were much older when they became that reliable about their sleep. So many interesting things to see where you live, I really want to visit the area someday. Your backyard is beautiful and it will be even more inviting with the lights. I can't wait for photos.

Home and away... oh, that is such a familiar sentiment.
We have a wonderful travel plan lined up, and already I
am homesick! Suddenly I am compulsively finishing a quilt,
and imagining all the other sewing I could be doing... if only we were
staying home! But then those new sights, and inspiring destinations
are such a blessed way to recharge! These are the _trials_ I bear!
And as usual, you make home look as enchanted as any place could be.
Alicia, we've spent years searching for good light-bulb strands...
bulbs more ample than Christmas lights. Something tells me you
and Andy have hit on a good source... could you please share with me

I live in Portland too and one of my favorite things to do is walk around new neighborhoods.I live in SE near Mt Tabor off of Hawthorne and although my neighborhood has a lot going on I find myself wanting to explore new neighborhoods on the weekends. My family likes to go to walk around the Sellwood neighborhood, and the Westmoreland park and the Sellwood riverfront park. Maybe we will move there someday...then we can come walk down Hawthorne on the weekends.

Your back yard blows me away everytime I see it! i love it soo much. Are most of the plants native perennials that you don't have to redo every year? It is an inspiration for my in town backyard..........LOVE. Portland really looks like a wonderful place.....love it so. I am in Missoula and I always feel like it is a mini Portland here in many ways.......

The little sweter is sew adorable! Can't wait to see the buttons on it!

So beautiful. Amelia is a lucky little baby, I am pregnant with my first and can't wait for this joy xx


I'm with you on the whole staying in and crying in front of the AC. I really loathe the heat!
I rate my crafts in order of energy required. Seeing what I'm doing after the kids are in bed is a good hint at how I feel. Sewing = high energy. Spinning (yarn) or hand sewing = moderate energy. Knitting = low energy. Reading = zero energy.
I've done nothing but read for 3 weeks straight. Hmm...

susan hall says: June 11, 2013 at 09:23 AM

you should come to england for the summer ! no worries about the heat here!!
i would love to visit that toyshop, it looks wonderful, all of portland looks lovely x

Glad you had a good time - one needs things like this sometimes! :-)

Another gorgeous sweater! And the yarn ball is such a pretty color too. I love that dress you have hanging in your room -- I need something like that for Saturday when we'll be outside in Philadelphia all day in the heat for the US Open. I will have to be dragged from the air conditioning after that! It's hot and muggy and ready to rain again here.

catherine says: June 11, 2013 at 10:20 AM

Amelia is just precious and everytime you post a new picture she looks more grown up :) Your backyard looks beautiful!

Yes i think it is the best thing in the world for kids to go out and learn from birth on to be in public settings. We did the same with my boy and he loves being out now and so well behaved in restaurants. Its almost like its calming to him to be amongst all the huslte and bustle goings on.
Oh she is a dear. Look at that hair it is so pretty and her lovely stuffed kitty cat is darling.
Enjoy that beautiful weather. I have been crying for weeks already in the air condtioning. Lol

I agree with a previous comment, you'd love British weather. Last week it was perfect, sunny, warm, not too hot, and with the most delicious breeze. Honestly, if it was like that all summer long I'd be a fan.

Oh how I used to love walking with my girl in her pram. Especially on a rainy day. She'd be cosy inside, rain cover on, reading a magazine and munching choccy. Happy, happy, days.


BJK in PA says: June 11, 2013 at 11:11 AM

The paint color in the third picture is just beautiful. Do you recall the name or maker? I am not sure if its blue, green or gray and ambiguity is what I like about it. The sweaters you make are so pretty - real keepsakes.

I enjoyed your images today.. we've been so lucky with the weather this Spring! Today it sprinkled on our skylights this morning and it is grey and our pellet stove is glowing and keeping us warm. I think it's a good day to rest. We were thinking of going to Heirloom Roses today.. we'll see. Enjoy the cool day. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

You seem to like knitting and crochet equally. Which one do you think is quicker (if you were to say, compare doing either method for a sweater)? I have a 12 month old and get precious little time to crochet, so I was wondering if learning to knit might mean a finished project in less time?

These knits are just making me so happy! Have you ever done or thought about a knitted bonnet kinda like this: http://www.mioukids.com/collections/accessories/products/cherie-bonnet-grey ? That's what I've got my thoughts on :)

Beautiful photos. I love these glimpses into your world.

Talk about crying... I live in the South and absolutely hate the summers here. I'm sitting in my office (at work) with a fan pointed directly at my face. You'd think that our high rises would be built to tolerate 90-100 degree weather. It's like sitting in a sauna. Geez!

Anyways, would love to know how you did that door. Looks like decoupage but I can't tell if it's paper or fabric?

I'm loling at "heat" and P-town in the same sentence-I am a native NYer who lived in Dallas for a long spell before coming to central Oregon-there is NO heat here, LOL. I loved last week when we had 85s and up; it felt like home! I am a summer chick at heart and loath the rain. Oregon is just not my cuppa, pretty as it is.

Yea for babies that sleep all night-my twins were power-sleepers, too. From three months on they napped for two hours and then slept eleven or so every night. I got heaps of sewing done back then( all my knitting took place when I was put on bed-rest at 12 weeks...)and made their christening gowns, etc. A very "nesty" time indeed. Enjoy yours. It goes quickly!

I am not a night person either! I can't do anything aside from knitting, embroidery, or reading in the late evening, early night hours. My son was the same way about sleep. He was just a sleep rockstar starting at two months. My 16 month old daughter still wakes at least once a night. I melt once the temp reaches 85. Odd how much I love the south considering that fact. We've been blessed with blissfully cool temps, but it did not hold out. Today the high hit 93. I do not do southern summers. How many days till October?? Gorgeous photographs, as always. They bring me such inspiration!

I really have got to get to Portland...if only just to eat! We planned to drive from the East coast this Spring but our plans were thwarted. Maybe next Spring.

Not sure if you're still looking for good books (I know I'm always looking) but I've thought of an author you might enjoy. Her name is Louise Penny. She rights mysteries, think gentle, Agatha Christie type mysteries. These are set mostly in the same lovely mystical little town south of Montreal. You'll fall in love with the characters and the town. I'd suggest reading them in order.

Also, big news around here...The Avett Brothers are having a concert the end of July very near by and I plan to be there. I'm so excited!
Keep knitting!!

Your backyard is such an inspiration! Every time you share pictures I gobble up the details because I'm so unhappy with mine and a little overwhelmed on where to even start.

It looks like the covered part of your yard is a kind of pergola? Is that what that is? Does it cover adequately? Do you have a vine going across it? I have a terrible, old Sears metal one that blocks out all the beautiful natural light. I want to get rid of it but I would like to have a covered option and I keep thinking a Pergula with hops growing across it would be amazing.

I'm just not sure how wet everything would get underneath it. Not that I get any coverage now. The metal one leaks so bad everything gets wet so I'm not sure what I'm hesitating for!

Ah, I love the evenings for a little sitting and hand sewing. Something I don't have to think about. Beautiful new wool. And your garden is looking stunning. That wonderful tree in the middle just makes it, it's fantastic. A mature tree is something I would have loved in my garden, but unfortunately when we moved in there wasn't a single plant except grass, not one!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com