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Franklin City Sights: Pumpkin Patch

I wouldn’t normally blog about a ten-minute stop by a pumpkin patch on the side of the road… but this one happens to come with a background story.  We didn’t know anything about the pumpkin patch at all, other than that we noticed it pop up in the last week or so and drove by it almost every day. So when we were running errands over the weekend, we stopped by to pick out a pumpkin.
We found out that it is staffed with volunteers for the Cooper Trooper Foundation, and all proceeds go to research for pediatric cancer and “Cooper Trooper Caring and Courage Kits” for sibling of kids with cancer.  Cooper, the namesake, was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer as an infant but is cancer-free today – and in fact, he and his older brothers were running around the pumpkin patch that day.
The Amateur Librarian // Cooper Trooper Pumpkin Patch
So… I’m no affiliated or anything, but it was a cool story and definitely made us feel even better about picking up a couple pumpkins to take home.  It looked like there were some other fun things for kids too – a bouncy house and wagons if you pick out a pile.  If you’re interested in the foundation, here’s their website: www.coopertrooper.org
If you live in the area, you should check it out!  And now a small photo dump… of course!
The Amateur Librarian // Cooper Trooper Pumpkin Patch
The Amateur Librarian // Cooper Trooper Pumpkin Patch
The Amateur Librarian // Cooper Trooper Pumpkin Patch
The Amateur Librarian // Cooper Trooper Pumpkin Patch
The Amateur Librarian // Cooper Trooper Pumpkin Patch
Here’s our mama & baby pumpkins hanging out by our front door!
The Amateur Librarian // Cooper Trooper Pumpkin Patch
 More city sights coming soon as we explore the Nashville area!

Meow Monday: Nap Attack

Tali has been hubby’s new nap buddy lately, and it’s pretty cute.  One of my favorite lazy weekend activities is I listening to podcasts while I cross stitch, and hubby usually takes naps.

Cora is usually found right behind my head.

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

Tali usually perches on the couch, but lately she’s been cuddling closer and closer.

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

(There are no actual nap attacks… but I couldn’t think of any other title.)

Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books

One of my favorite authors, Lev Grossman, blogged some time ago about his upcoming appearances, including the Southern Festival of Books in October, so of course I checked it out… lo & behold, it’s an annual event in Nashville!  So you know I had to go…
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
It was overcast but the sun peeked out throughout the afternoon, so fortunately it didn’t rain on us.  We browsed the stalls, bought a couple books, and ate lunch at the food trucks.  But the best part by far was the author sessions! The whole weekend was jam packed with them (and all free!) but there were two in particular I wanted to see on Sunday – Jacqueline Woodson and Lev Grossman, of course.
The War Memorial Plaza was a part of downtown that I hadn’t seen before, so it was fun to check it out.
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The first session I wanted to see was Jacqueline Woodson talking about her latest novel Brown Girl Dreaming. It was really cool to hear her voice as she recited (from memory) several passages and verse from her last few works, as well as her newest novel. The Q&A was really fun too..
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
I intended to buy Brown Girl Dreaming to have it signed, and I was super bummed when I found out it was sold out. But I got my program signed at least.
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
It was also a great chance to see the Nashville Public Library – you know I love visiting new libraries!
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
I’ve followed Lev Grossman’s Magician trilogy over the last few years, so I was excited to see him (again!) for a great session and book signing afterward.  The session was so much fun – and even after hearing his story from several different angles over the past few years, it was very cool to hear him in person. And again, the Q&A was great.
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
Fun fact… the guy in front of us struck up a conversation while we were waiting in line, and he was actually visiting from the military base in Columbus, MS.  Small world!
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
Can you tell it was the highlight of the day for me??  Just for funsies, here’s a comparison of 2012 & 2014:
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Southern Festival of Books
 More city sights coming soon as we explore the Nashville area!

Meow Monday: Forever Young Adult Photo a Day Challenge

Forever Young Adult is one of my favorite book blogs, so I jumped on their bandwagon and joined the #fyaphotoaday challenge to post every day of September in response to the book-related post. Now that the month is over, I thought I’d share on the blog. The cats made a few appearances of course!

The Amateur Librarian // #fyaphotoaday

 

1. You and a book

1. You and a book

Nothing better than reading in bed… especially a hotel bed! This was Labor Day weekend when we visited Dismal Falls.

2. Childhood Favorite

2. Childhood Favorite

3. Currently reading

3. Currently reading

The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt (I like the second cover better, though).

4. Favorite Series

4. Favorite Series

The Magician trilogy by Lev Grossman… and hopefully, I’ll get him to sign book #3 too!

5. Favorite author

5. Favorite author

LM Montgomery, forever!

6. Your shelves

6. Your shelves

Still loving the ROY G BIV organization!

7. Your bookmark

7. Your bookmark

When I was 18, my uncle took me on a trip to Paris and London, and I collected bookmarks as souvenirs along the way. Still love using them for all my books!

8. Most Read

8. Most Read

Every time the next book came out, I had to read the series from the beginning again… and the whole series most summers… so this first book has been read many a time.

9. Most anticipated

9. Most anticipated

So excited to delve into the last book of the Magician trilogy by Lev Grossman!

10. TEABS

10. TEABS (The End of an Awesome Book Syndrome)

Rainbow Rowell is just plain magic… if each of her books were about 200 pages more of dialogue, I would lap it right up.

11. Fictional love

11. Fictional love

Captain Wentworth is my favorite of the Austen heroes.

12. Powerful Quote

12. Powerful Quote

I went down the Pinterest rabbit hole of “John Green quotes” and finally settled on this one. From The Fault in Our Stars.

13. Reading Spot

13. Reading Spot

The kitties make this spot cozy.

14. Best Cover

14. Best Cover

Jackie Oakley’s new LM Montgomery covers are GORGEOUS and I want them all!

15. Worst Cover

15. Worst Cover

Not the “worst,” but not my cup of tea. Not my favorite book, either… sorry JK!

16. Drink of Choice

16. Drink of Choice

A grande hot chocolate and a stack of library books is the perfect combination!

17. DNRIP

17. DNRIP (Do Not Read in Public)

Too many tears to read in public!

18. Fred Savage

18. Fred Savage

Fred Savage hates “kissing books” in the Princess Bride movie… and I don’t “hate” Junie B. but she sure is a brat!  And it’s annoying to read intentionally grammatically incorrect sentences.

19. Favorite Adaptation

19. Favorite Adaptation

Can’t decide!

20. Book store/Library

20. Book store/Library

Love the library, of course!

21. Funniest Read

21. Funniest Read

Love this blog, and the book was LOL funny for real…

22. Most Recent DNF (Did Not Finish)

22. Most Recent DNF (Did Not Finish)

Couldn’t finish either of these… but maybe one day…? The Language of Flowers was very controversial on Instagram… some people loved it & thought it was worth pushing through, and some hated it & said I should let it go entirely.

23. Beach Read

23. Beach Read

Perfect beach read – fast, funny, thoughtful!

24. Biggest Swoon

24. Biggest Swoon

I’m not big on “swoon” these days but I gobbled up this stuff in high school and still have a special place in my heart for Rilla’s “yeth” at the very end.

25. FYABC Recommendation

25. FYABC Recommendation

It’s not often that Newbery Winners are also YA, so I think this would be a good book club pick… it’s next on my list!

26. Most Recent Buy/Borrow

26. Most Recent Buy/Borrow

I bought it, read it, and then the author signed it!

27. Own (But Never Read)

27. Own (But Never Read)

Just a few from the shelf waiting to be read…

28. Overrated

28. Overrated

I just couldn’t get over the premise… and I never had any desire to finish the trilogy (or see the movie) after the first book.

29. Bestworst Cliffhanger

29. Bestworst Cliffhanger

Biggest cliffhanger ever… right now I’m enjoying the TV show too much to spoil myself with the books (backward, I know!)

30. Read This Month

30. Read This Month

A few of my favs from the month of September!

Such a fun challenge!

One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest

It’s starting to feel like Fall around here… woohoo!  My recent jacket to vest refashion has me consulting Pinterest (again) for outfit ideas… here are a few that I mentioned in the refashion post:
So I had a dress-up afternoon and came up with some ideas from my closet.  And then I realized my afternoon o’ fun could fit right into a One Piece Many Ways post… so here we are!  Can you tell I’m excited for some cooler weather to arrive?
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
Inspired by all the Pinterest trends, I tried on a few different outfits with my new vest…
With skinny jeans – stripes, polka dots, and plaid, oh my!
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // Jacket to Vest Refashion
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // What I Wore Wednesday
With leggings – chambray and sweaters!
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
The Amateur Librarian // One Piece Many Ways: Puffer Vest
Come on Fall, I’m ready for some cooler weather!  Once more, three cheers for Pinterest & free refashions :)

Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Convention

This past weekend my company had a booth at the Wizard World Comic Con in Nashville. It was a looong weekend but so much fun!  I didn’t take too many pictures since I was mostly working, but of course I couldn’t resist a few.
Is it weird that my favorite moments were meeting a couple cute kittens that one man was fostering for the Humane Society and visiting the booth selling Sugar Bears (the “perfect pocket pet”)?? If there’s a small furry animal convention, sign me up!!
But I digress… here’s the photo dump!
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
This kid saw another guy with a light saber and an epic battle commenced… it was pretty much the definition of adorkable.  You could just tell his day was made.
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
Sugar bears and kittens!
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
My view from behind the books…
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
Our awesome tour bus!
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
It was an exhausting weekend and I think we were all dragging by the last day… but I had a blast meeting lots of interesting people and enjoying the awesome costumes that walked by our booth.  See ya next year, Wizard World!
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
Of course I celebrated with a bottle of wine… and a day off yesterday!
The Amateur Librarian // Nashville City Sights: Wizard World Con
 More city sights coming soon as we explore the Nashville area!

Meow Monday: Cats of Instagram, Part Sixteen

I had a crazy weekend working a booth at the Nashville Wizard World con for work – fun by exhausting!  I’m taking today off to recuperate, so here’s another Instagram update! This batch is from May and June… you can tell from the Once Upon a Time sampler progress!

BFFs

BFFs

 

Enjoying the May sunshine... and the first few stitches!

Enjoying the May sunshine… and the first few stitches!

 

Laundry Day

Laundry Day

 

Tali loves love.

Tali loves love.

 

Progress!

Progress!

 

Cora didn't want to look at the camera.

Cora didn’t want to look at the camera.

 

Tali loves rolling around in the pollen... sigh.

Tali loves rolling around in the pollen… sigh.

 

Almost done!

Almost done!

 

The Golden Hour

People/dog watching

 

The kitties love the screened porch!  But they get sad if they see us leave from the porch.

The kitties love the screened porch! But they get sad if they see us leave from the porch.

Project Pinterest: Cross Stitch Bookmarks

Another successful Pinterest project… I’m on a roll this week! I saw the very cutest bookmarks EVER from Hey Porkchop using her Frosted Pumpkin mini patterns and started trolling Pinterest for a tutorial… but I couldn’t find any that I liked at all. Most “cross stitch bookmarks” look pretty old fashioned, and that’s not the look I was going for. So I pinned the image from Hey Porkchop and spent lots of time studying it carefully… and then just made it up as i went along.
I really hope Amanda puts together a tutorial at some point, but in the meantime here’s my interpretation!
Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
Time: A weekend… cross stitching takes a while!
Cost: Maybe $10
Supplies:
cross stitch supplies – pattern, floss, needle, aida cloth
gift tags or cardstock
sewing machine
optional embellishments: ribbon, stickers, scrapbook paper, hole puncher, etc.
Instructions:
I used scraps of leftover fabric to cross stitch some small designs. The lemonade is from Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery (no longer available), the flower totem is a freebie from Kitschy Digital, and the “A” initial is from a thrifted book of cross stitch samplers.
You’ve seen a few of these pics recently… and there are a few more of the procress:
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
Then the scary part… sewing the cross stitch onto paper… but it’s really not as bad as I was dreading! I chose some thin scrapbooking paper and sewed the cross stitched design right on top.  I tried to keep the lines as straight and evenly spaced as possible, but it’s not perfect. I lengthened the stitch to give as much leeway as possible, and used white thread so it blends in.  Then I trimmed the aida cloth to about 1/4-inch and pulled a few threads to fray them.
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
Then, let the embellishment begin!  I didn’t use any glue, just folded the scrapbook paper around the gift tag and fastened with stickers on the back.  For the bunting, I cut out triangles and sewed them directly to the gift tag.  Then added lots of stickers and a ribbon on top, and all done!
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
I found some gift tags I found at JoAnn’s, but if the design was too big I just made some out of cardstock.  I used the storebought tags as a template and traced the top part onto cardstock, then punched a hole at the top.
And of course you don’t have to cross stitch anything to make a cute bookmark… you can just decorate a gift tag with some paper, stickers, and a ribbon.
Here are some front and back pics of the bookmarks I made in an afternoon:
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
So much fun!! I had a blast making these.
I’ve been using a couple bookmarks and I’ll probably be making more… these just might be the presents everyone gets for Christmas this year!
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
The Amateur Librarian // Cross Stitch Bookmarks
 Once again, Pinterest to the rescue!

Project Pinterest: Jacket to Vest Refashion

It’s officially Fall!  We’ve had some mildly chilly weather lately and I’m looking forward to more layers and more Fall weather to come!   My Style board on Pinterest is full of vests lately – here are a few of my favorites:
So I’ve been on the hunt for a vest, but my problem (as usual) is finding one that isn’t too big or bulky.  So far, no luck.  But when I stumbled on this jacket to vest refashion from one of my favorite style blogs Merrick’s Art, I pinned it right away and tucked it into the back of my mind:
Recently I’ve been trying to purge some of my clothes to get ready for Fall.  I started going through my jackets and realized I had the perfect candidate for a refashion:
The Amateur Librarian // Jacket to Vest Refashion
I immediately thought of this pin and got started!
Jacket to Vest Refashion
The Amateur Librarian // Jacket to Vest Refashion
Time: 30 minutes
Cost: Free
Supplies:
old jacket
sewing machine with matching thread
Instructions:
Follow this link to the tutorial from Merrick’s Art.  Her illustrations make everything seem really easy, although I definitely found the lack of specifics a bit tricky when I actually got started.  For one thing, I don’t really have any experience with alterations, so the very first mistake I made was sewing with a short stitch length.  My stitch settings are usually set for piecing a quilt, where you want short stitches for durability, but for a knit fabric like I was working with it’s better to lengthen the stitch.  Lesson learned!
Otherwise, it’s a pretty easy idea – use a seam ripper to remove the sleeves, then hem the new armholes.  My jacket had knit sleeves and back, with corduroy and a puffy vest in the front, so the different fabrics were a bit tricky to sew.  But it’s possible!
The Amateur Librarian // Jacket to Vest Refashion
The Amateur Librarian // Jacket to Vest Refashion
I really like how it turned out – and since it was an old jacket, I didn’t have to buy anything new and it already fit me… Win-win!
The Amateur Librarian // Jacket to Vest Refashion
The Amateur Librarian // Jacket to Vest Refashion
Now I’m all ready for Fall fashion!  I’ve already worn this vest a couple times, as you’ll see in WIWW tomorrow. Once again, Pinterest to the rescue!

Meow Monday: Works in Progress

I’ve been on a crafty roll lately and have a few works in progress… and the cats are never far away.

There’s the Once Upon a Time sampler, of course.  September’s block is Rapunzel… I just started working on it this past week and so far I’ve got happy little trees (and a lot of Madden in the background).

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

I started a couple mini cross stitch projects for some bookmarks inspired by Hey Porkchop.  Can’t wait to put them together and share… so cute! Plus, it’s fun to have something completed in a weekend.

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

 

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

I’m still reading lots of books for the Nerdbery Challenge.  I’ve collected some through Paperbackswap.com and visited the library for the first time this weekend for more.  I love having a big To-Read pile!

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

I’ve also finished up my UFO pile that’s accumulated since 2010… such a good feeling!  I have to take more pics but I’ll share more soon.  I’m brainstorming ideas for my next quilt… I’d like to do something with the hand dyed fabric I made with my guild.  Maybe something with stars?  Planning is part of the fun… but right now I’ve got too many ideas to get started on any one thing.  So we shall see!

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

 

The Amateur Librarian // Meow Monday

Happy Monday!

 

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