Sunday, August 31, 2008

will i ever learn?

***updated pic at the bottom to show both of my girls when they were tiny with double pacifiers**
*warning: mommy topics*
As a new mother I often underestimated the amount of diapers I would need on an outing. Without fail there was usually a huge leakage or explosion just minutes before returning home....and usually while I was holding the baby so that I, too, would have ruined clothes. I can very clearly remember taking Miss E to the doctor for her 4-month visit. I laid her on the table diaperless, and she peed everywhere...all over the table, it ran off the edge all over my legs, socks, tennis shoes. Ugh! Oh well, at least it's just my shoes, right? In a moment, I quickly picked her up and threw the blanket on the mess to clean it up. However, whilst I was holding her, naked as a jay bird, she peed again! That's right, all over my shirt and shorts. I was quite the sight to behold. The nurse was there the whole time (all of this happened in about 23 seconds) and was trying to help clean up. She said...don't worry, it was bound to happen. After that I took an extra blanket and an extra shirt for me in addition to the many diapers, burp cloths, pacifiers, and extra onsies. I am so glad diaper bag days are over.

Once I graduated to just carrying a few diapers in my purse I felt like a new person. No more pacifiers, no more burp cloths, no more changes of clothing...aahhhh, freedom. Yet, without fail something would happen and I would need an extra shirt for the baby or wish I had brought a burp cloth for a spill or some kind of mess. For example, the "spill-proof" sippy cup upside down in the kid's lap in the car seat the entire ride to Grandma's house, the mall, church...oh, I could have used a clean outfit on those days. Live and learn, right?

Another leap...this time to potty training and carrying an extra pair of toddler panties in my purse and a pair of shorts...ya know, just in case. Lots of success with this one. No more diapers in my purse, no more travel wipes in my purse. I can carry a cuter, smaller, more-my-style purse, yippee! Yes, there were a few accidents at first and I quickly learned to carry a few Ziploc bags ,too, for the oops-we're-in-the-potty training-stage panties so my entire purse lining won't smell of urine...ugh! That lesson was learned early on in the process and unfortunately I had to learn that lesson a couple of times...double ugh!

Okay, so now potty training is complete! I see no reason to carry panties in my purse, but because I have gained some wisdom since I've gone through this whole process twice I decide to keep the panties in my purse for a few extra months...ya know, just in case. Months pass, never a need for the emergency panties. This is so great! I finally decided to take the panties out of my purse like two weeks ago. I'm in the clear, right? Oh man, was I wrong. Let me explain... *if you're squeamish you may want to skip the rest of this* Well, on Saturdays we like to take the kids to a playground nearby that has an indoor area and an outdoor area. Nice,right? It's great, especially when it's really hot or really cold outside. Anyhoo, we ran out of coffee this past Saturday so we stopped at Starbucks...a rare but delicious treat. While I was getting the coffee miss E said she had a tummy ache. That is never good. We hurried over to the play place and I immediately took her to the bathroom. She just had to pee, nothing else. Yes, I made her sit there for a minute, ya know...just in case. Nothing. So out to play we go. We're not far from the bathroom, so that's good. After a few minutes of playing with Big Sister on the playground miss E walks to me slowly...never a good sign because she never functions slowly. Bathroom? Yes. So off we go, but oh, we were too late. No, not pee...the D word. Just a little, but enough to be sad and embarrassed and distraught (her, not me) because there are NO extra panties in my purse! Why?! Why?! Why did I take them out of my purse? Poor thing had a tummy ache and now on top of that...very emotional. So what did I do? Well, after she was done I just put her shorts back on her. She was so upset, poor thing. No panties? People will see me with no panties! I assured her that no one would know, but that didn't seem to help her 3 year old mind. Well, we quickly went home...ya know, just in case. Got some clean panties and clean shorts and she was back to her happy self.
Will I ever learn? Panties in the purse or no panties in the purse? That is the question.

Okay, these pictures have absolutely nothing to do with this post, but oh so cute. My babies.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

thankful thursday

Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; Sing praises to our God on the lyre, Who covers the heavens with clouds, Who provides rain for the earth, Who makes the grass to grow on the mountains. Psalm 147:7-8

one - rain, rain, and more rain! - It hasn't rained here since very early in July so I am so thankful for days of rain. I can already see the tomatoes in my garden smiling.
two - beautiful babies - We had a play date with some dear friends the other day that was long overdo...great conversation for the moms, great fun for the kids, I mean really cute's their youngest, adorable right?!
three - new discoveries - The other day Miss O asked for one of the books high on her bookshelf, you know, the books that are to be admired but not touched, especially by little sister. Well, I gave it to her, then minutes later she asked for another, then she started pulling all the Sweet Pickles books off the shelf that were mine when I was little. Books. Were. Everywhere. She came out of her room about 20 minutes later and said...."Mom! Mom! I can read everything on my shelf!" I, of course, knew she could all along, but she didn't have the want to sit still with books with more words than pictures (we all love a great picture book). She was so excited to discover it. She's only 5 years old and already has her nose in a book most of the time.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

i might be...

...a redneck if I use a fishing tackle box... my sewing basket.

Let me explain, ya'll...I used to do a lot of hand quilting when I lived on Moloka'i so I had a small sewing bag with just the essentials so it was easy to take with me where ever I went. Well, now that we're back here on the mainland and I am doing more and more regular sewing I was accumulating more thread, needles, notions for varying projects and they were all spread out among several little bags or piles in the closet. Ugh! It was difficult to find anything because I had to go on my own little scavenger hunt before the onset of each sewing adventure. So I decided it was time to invest in a sewing basket. I looked at several different sewing baskets that were cute, but they didn't seem to have enough compartmentalized storage or open space underneath for bigger items like rotary cutters and scissors. So then I thought ...hmmm....what to do? what to do? Oh, I know, maybe I could re-purpose Tim's tackle box. It has lots of little compartments and expands when you open it. But I couldn't take his tackle box, plus, it probably has a fishy odor...eeewwwww. So off to Walmart I went. And to my delight there were many choices with lots of storage, and they were so.much.cheaper. Albeit, tackle boxes aren't meant to be cute, because, after all, they aren't meant to be...they're for fisherman for crying out loud! However, since the ever so popular cuteness-outweighs-functional rule only applies to fabulous shoes I thought that I could certainly use a tackle box. Oh man, was I right! I love having all of my sewing stuff in one place. Having to organize all of my stuff really helped me get rid of unnecessary, old, broken, things that I saved for some long forgotten reason. Ahhhhh...organization, little compartments, a place for everything and everything in it's place. My only regret is that I didn't get a bigger one! So go ahead, judge me. Call me a redneck. Call me crazy. Laugh at my silly little tackle sewing box. I don't mind at all. Really I don't. I {heart} my box. If you've got any ingenious ways to decorate it or cover it to make it more, well, me, then bring it on. I'm certainly open to any and all suggestions that may or may not include sarcasm. :o)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

olympic fun

You Are Gymnastics

You are agile, expressive, and precise.

You have the drive to practice until you get something perfectly right.

And you have the confidence to perform difficult moves when under pressure.

happy birthday....

...GRANDMA SANDY! at the beach with Grandma...

...dessert on the balcony with Grandma...

...the birthday Princess Grandma...

Monday, August 25, 2008

finished products unveiled...yippee! are the things I have been working on this week.
The first is an apron for my mother-in-law's birthday. Her birthday party was Sunday, but her actual birthday is Tuesday. Anyway...let me introduce the apron I like to call the American as Apple Pie Apron.
it's reversible...I couldn't resist

The printed fabric is off white with blue apples, blue plums, and red cherries. It is a truly beautiful vintage material. I had a hard time cutting it, but I just knew it was perfect. That vintage material had belonged to Tim's granny...Grandma Sandy's mom. She had given it to me a little while after Tim and I got married. I've had it all this time not really knowing what to do with it....I'm glad it finally found a good home :o)
I also (with the help of the girls) made two tissue covers for Grandma Sandy. I let the girls loose in my fabric and they got to choose whatever they wanted. I helped choose coordinating material for the inside and the trim on the outside. They helped trace around the template onto the fabric, I did the cutting of the fabric, then they helped with the sewing. Boy did they have fun getting their little paws on my sewing machine!
And there is the birthday girl with her new/vintage apron. There's one more birthday coming up...more sewing to do!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

are you kidding me?

I love a great bargain! I found some adorable new summer-y pajamas for the girls. I'll get a picture up later, but just so you know, they're green with monkeys and bananas. So cute...shorts and a sleeveless T-shirt. Really they were from the boys section, but they got put on the clearance rack in the girls section. Only $3.00! Are you kidding me?

Working away on the birthday gifts. Everything is working out great. I drew a picture of what I want this gift to look like with measurements and all....and it's really turning out just as I had hoped...and my sewing machine has been working like a champ! No loopy thread or anything! Are you kidding me?

Almost done with the main gift. Only some decorative top-stitching to go! What's this? No more thread? Seriously, I ran out of thread! It's top stitching, for crying out loud, I need more thread!!! Running out of thread in the middle of top stitching...are you kidding me?

Joanne's to the rescue. Oh wait - they've changed all the names and style numbers of their thread! Are you kidding me? (thankfully I took a few strands of the much needed thread with me and I found the match)

I'm still walking/jogging with my friends at night after my girls go to bed (yes, Tim is at home with the girls!). I've covered 28 miles so far. Kim, the one who started this in the first place, has covered more ground and as the motivator for us all has gotten us to jog a little farther each night. We're all doing really well and I can tell a difference in the muscle tone in my legs and for the most part I don't feel like my lungs are going to explode. Who would have - jogging! Are you kidding me?

I'll update later with some pictures. I gotta get the girls ready for church.

Friday, August 22, 2008

giveaway, good food, and gifts

Oh man! Adrienne over at Some of a Kind is celebrating her 200th post with a giveaway. She's got some serious sewing talent and is always making something fabulous. She is going to make an apron for the winner! Fingers crossed! Okay, okay, if you want a chance to win an apron go ahead over to her blog and enter, but if you win I'll fight you for it... so put up your dukes!
Oops, wrong Dukes...I couldn't resist! hehehe!

I was brave this week. I made enchiladas again. I know, I didn't think I would be ready so soon, but we've had a hankerin' for them ever since the last disastrous attempt. Now remember, the putrid, rancid, most disgusting enchiladas I made was not my fault! It was the sauce. Walmart didn't have my brand so I got an obviously inferior, possibly even deadly brand. One that So back to being brave...I know cooking doesn't necessarily equate with bravery, but once again Walmart didn't have the brand of enchilada sauce that I prefer so I tried another brand. You just never know...but this time the sauce was good and the enchiladas turned out great! Now if I just had some fried ice cream for dessert...Mmmmmmmmmm.

My sewing machine has been getting a good workout this week. There are two birthdays coming up and I've been busy. I can't show you what's in the works or tell you about it...that would ruin the surprise. What I can do is give you a sneak peek! (this is stuff for 2 separate gifts)So if your birthday is coming know who you are...then close your eyes!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

thankful thursday

Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom, teaching, and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Whatever you do in work or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. -Colossians 3:16-17

one - lots and lots of grape tomatoes - Despite the lack of rain our grape tomatoes are bountiful. There's nothing like a great big salad adorned with juicy, vine-ripened, garden fresh tomatoes.
two - motivated, holding-me-accountable friends - Still walking (with a little jogging mixed in for the sake of an increase in heart rate). Our goal is to walk at least 3 times a week, 4 times if at
all possible. Four miles each time. Bring it on, baby!
three - helpers in the kitchen - My girls really love to get under my feet be helpful in the kitchen. We made some rice crispie treats, a yummy snack that is quick and easy and perfect for little ones to make, plus, we all enjoy them (even Daddy because they're gluten free). Then we gathered up all of their play dishes and utensils so they could have a go at washing dishes. No dishwasher's all by hand in our house. I personally don't mind washing dishes, I just crank up the radio and wash away! (I know Mama, it's taken 35 years and I finally don't complain about it!) Anyway, the girls had a ball! There was water and sudsy bubbles everywhere. They stood in their chairs at the sink for almost an hour scrubbing, rinsing, taking turns, getting wet, and having fun.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

outta sight, outta mind

Have you ever worked on a sewing project or craft then put it away only to completely forget about it? I mean really, outta sight, outta mind? Well, way back in 2002, when I was pregnant with Miss O I took a quilting class with my mother-in-law at her church. It was fun and challenging. The perfectionist in me really wanted the corners and edges to line up exactly right. Grrrr! I remember it being very frustrating when it wasn't perfect. I still enjoyed the choosing of the material and the piecing it all together. Anyway, after 5 blocks Miss O was born and I didn't finish the class or the quilt. I put it all away, then eventually gave the blocks and remaining material to my mom to make the quilt for me. Then baby #2 came along and I asked her to wait because I'd want the girls to have matching quilts. So wait, she did. Now my baby is 3 years old and I completely forgot that I had even started that quilt. Last week when my mom came she brought it all back to me. Here is what I have.

I forgot how much I love these fabrics. I've got a lot of projects that need to be done before I tackle this again. But now, I don't know if I want to make a quilt at all. I might have to come up with something else. I've got 5 blocks and more than a yard of each material. Any ideas?

Monday, August 18, 2008

a moment of silence please

It has been made known to me (and Tim) that our beloved little green car will not be coming home again all fixed up, but instead will be taking our money with it as it eventually goes to that great junk yard in the sky county. Grrrrrrrr! More on this later....after the shock wears off.

keeping track

Last night I went walking again with my friend Kim. Oh yeah, 4 more miles. I need to start keeping track so I know how much ground I've pun intended. As of right now it's 16 miles. Not bad. We have started jogging a little here and there throughout the 4 miles and last night we did great! The weather has been great, the dogs have been behind electric fences, and the cat-calls..non-existent. Until last night, that is. Kim's oldest daughter came with us last night. I sure hope she had fun...if you can call exercising with your mom and her friend fun. She's a cool kid, 13, my favorite age group when I was teaching. I'm around my own little ones all the time so sometimes I forget how much I enjoy that age group. Ooohhh, I just found out she's going to get her ears pierced! I can't wait to see them. I'm supposed to be walking with Kim again tonight so if she comes I'll get to see them. Well, I've got work to do so this post will have to end here.

Friday, August 15, 2008

week in review

Well, here we are. It's Friday night and we still don't have our car back. Seriously people, how long does it take to order a part and put it in the car? We did fare well this week as a one-car family (again). We had a busy, but not so busy, week. We had VBS on Sunday evening. Monday was pretty much a relaxed family day...and Tim fixed up the laptop for me. Big Grandma (my mom) came on Tuesday. Wednesday we went to the library. Thursday was doctor appointment day and Grandma and Pop came over in the afternoon. Friday, aahhhh. Today was nice. We stayed at home, the girls played, and drew pictures, and read books, and watched a little Magic School Bus. I thought it was going to rain and ruin my clothesline usage on laundry day, but the rain held off and all the laundry got done....and hung outside to dry in the breeze. I mean, really, is there anything better than crispy, fresh, dry clothes? Okay, maybe a giant piece of cappuccino cheesecake with a freshly brewed cup of Kona coffee....oh yeah, that's way better than clean laundry any day. Okay, hanging my laundry on the clothesline is way better than having to beat it all on a rock by the edge of the river. So no complaining! The weather is supposed to be great tomorrow...I see yard sales, nice walks in the neighborhood, and playing with friends at the playground. (all within walking distance because of the car issues...and all assuming that the sun will shine!)

thankful thursday (on friday)

In God we have boasted all day long, And we will give thanks to Your name forever. Selah. Psalm 44:8
Let me just preface this post by saying the girls had their doctor appointments yesterday.
one - growing girls - Miss O is now 42 lbs(50th percentile) and 45 1/2(75th percentile) inches tall! Miss E is 35 lbs(80th percentile) and 39 inches(75th percentile) tall. Both are comfortably on the growth chart. They've come a long way from being off the really skinny and one, well, not so skinny!
two - brave girls - I am happy to say that both girls were very comfortable with the doctor and even when they got shots and finger pricks there was minimal crying. The crying they did do was pretty quiet. Believe me, they can wail, but they were super brave and not at all traumatized by the event. I'm so proud of them. I think it helped to read about Elmo going to the doctor and watch The Magic School Bus about germs, sickness, and why it's important to get check-ups and shots.
three - a doctor who listens - If you have ever taken your child to the doctor, whether it be the ER or just the pediatrician, you have probably been dismissed at some point as an over-protective, anxious, don't-know-what-you're-talking-about mother. Let me just tell you that throughout both appointments (which they were kind enough to overlap so we wouldn't have to be there so long) the doctor and the nurse never doubted or dismissed a word I said. Believe me I had a list, a little, tiny, short list, of concerns and questions....all of which were addressed and thoughtfully answered. From ear wax solutions to epi-pen prescriptions - I never felt for one minute that they were rushing through the appointment or internally rolling their eyes because of my concerns.
One more thing...
Behold, children are a gift of the Lord; The fruit of the womb is a reward. Psalm 127:3

Okay, I don't think that this is what that verse was talking about, but these pictures were way too cute not to share!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

thoughts about peer pressure

Right now I am sitting on my nice comfy couch with my newly revived laptop, half-watching the Olympics while I type this post. Once again tonight I walked for an hour with my friend Kim. As we walked, at our very quick pace, I realized that I would not be doing this without her encouragement....also known as peer pressure. I enjoy the walks. I enjoy the conversation. Of course, there are gaps in the talking when we're going up a steep incline, but a girl has to breathe! So, three times tonight in the hour of walking we actually jogged. Oh yeah, she's using the peer pressure to push us a little farther. Peer pressure is a good thing, especially for me, because I'm not one to push myself. So, go ahead Kim, keep saying "let's jog to the next block, or to the light, or whatever" I'll do it because I'd be a big giant sissy if I didn't. I need the exercise, I need the external motivation. Well, now I have to do some envelope addressing so my new found free-to-move-about-the-cabin blogging must come to an end. So for my closing thought...
peer pressure is not always a bad thing. If it pushes you outside of your comfort zone to better yourself or accomplish things that you should be doing but aren't self-motivated to do on your own then I say bring it on!

i would like to thank the academy...

Ooops, wrong speech!

I did get two awards though. For as long as I have been lurking around in blogland I've seen awards and wondered what the big deal was. Well, now that I am part of this new world of blogging and have met so many wonderful people, I have a greater appreciation for all of the creativeness, the humor, the reality of being a mom that is shared for all of us to read, enjoy, sympathize with, and be encouraged by. So, thank you Zoe (from A Day in the Life) and Adrienne (from Some of a Kind) for the awards you have given me. Now the fun the awards to others!

The first award I received was from Zoe. She is so sweet. It's a shame she lives so far away because I know we would be great friends. Our children are close in age and have the same love for Star Wars. Zoe is also pretty darn crafty, too. I don't know how she squeezes in her sewing time, but she does and the outcome is always fabulous! Go ahead, visit her blog, be inspired!

So here are the rules for this award:
1) You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider to deserve this award, creativity, design, interesting material, and also contributes to the blogger community, no matter of language.
2) Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.
3) Each award-winning blog has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.
4) Award-winning blog and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of "Arte y pico"blog , so everyone will know the origin of this award.
5) To show these rules.
Well, here goes...
1. Adrienne at Some of a Kind shares her love of her family as well as her love of sewing. She's got some real talent and encourages us to join in. Sometimes all we need is a "come on, join me in a sew along" just remember to bring your seam ripper. We all need it eventually!
2. Kristen at Grace Violet has a wonderful blog full of creativity and inspiration. And even when a project doesn't go quite right, you know the kind you put away until you can deal with it, she shares her mistakes and her 2nd tries so we can give it a try, too.
3. The mom & daughter duo over at A Spoon Full of Sugar are two crafty girls. They are always cooking and creating and sharing it all with us...all the way from Australia.
4.Ellen at Hurrayic is always sharing great food, great sewing projects, and great family stories. Oh, and she has fabulous giveaways...remember this? Yeah, that was from Hurrayic! I'm so glad she decided to all I need to do is create something fabulous for the girls' dress-up box.
5. Kristen at We are THAT Family is so funny! Seriously. She has a way with words that makes being a mom, even on the worst of days, a hilarious blessing. Real life at it's finest. And just when you think that no one else could possibly understand the journey that is motherhood, oh, just go check it'll love it!
Wow, choosing is not that easy... there are so many great blogs out there.

The second award I received was from Adrienne. What fun it is to visit her blog, see her new creations (hanging on her tree), and read the stories of her life as a mom, crafter, and seam ripper. Thank you so much for the Smile Award. I am so thankful that you enjoy visiting my blog, even if it rains on laundry day!

Characteristics for the Smile Award:

1. Must display a cheerful attitude. (not necessarily at all times–we are all human) 2. Must love one another.; 3. Must make mistakes 4. Must learn from others 5. Must be a positive contributor to blog world 6. Must love life 7. Must love kids

These are the rules: 1. The recipient must link back to the award’s creator. 2. You must post these rules if you receive the award. 3. You must chose 5 people to receive the award after receiving it yourself 4. You must fit the characteristics of the recipient of the award, as posted by Mere. 5. You must post the characteristics of a recipient. 6. You must create a post sharing your win with others 7. You must thank your giver.

So now comes the hard part...choosing the recipients.

1. Zoe from A Day in the Life certainly fits the characteristics for this award. Loving her kids, her husband, her sewing, her crafting! I do hope she enjoys receiving this Smile Award.

2. My dear friend Theresa from The Daly Tribune. She is an inspiration, an encouraging friend, she adores her little ones and her hubby. I know she will love the verse from the award and smile.

3. Amy from The King's Table loves her two beautiful children and her husband. I love to read about her journey through motherhood. She is so sweet and funny. A Smile Award, she certainly deserves!

4. Rebekah of Sunnybrook Farm Designs has a wonderful talent and two beautiful daughters ( one who just got glasses and is so so cute). It is obvious that Rebekah loves her family. She often shares her talent and some joys of motherhood.

5. Jade from Chikaustin is one who loves her kids, is a talented crafter, and interior decorator extraordinaire. She pretty darn funny too.

Wow! I do hope that you all enjoy your awards. Keep those creative juices flowing so we can all be inspired!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

do you wanna know....

...what we've been up to these days?
*warning: long-winded post* please read on
We had a wonderful time in the morning at the playground with our friends . The weather was absolutely beautiful, almost autumn-like. Whoa...what happened to summer? Oh, and I forgot my camera so there are no cute pictures of O & E with their friends. Okay, so it was a play date for me, too. You know the moms enjoy hanging out just like the kids do. :o) After all that morning fun we went home and had a nice lunch then the girls went down for a nap.
Here's where the ?fun? begins.
While the girls are napping on Saturday I usually go grocery shopping. Yes, Tim stays at home, so relax! It's easier and faster to shop without the girls even if it is Walmart on Saturday. I took the green car, the old car, the car Tim usually drives, just like have done every Saturday. I was almost at Walmart. Only one more stop turns green...I go....then No power. No starting again. No power steering. GLASS HALF FULL~I was able to muscle the car completely off the road - the most crowded, notorious-for-accidents, stretch of road in the city. Also, when the car finally was off the road I realized I came to a stop right in the shade of a nice big tree! What a merciful, gracious, and loving God we serve. It wasn't a super hot day but it was warm and for some crazy reason I had decided to wear jeans...the shade was a huge blessing.
After over an hour on the side of the road and much conversation with Tim on my cell, the tow truck finally came and took the car away. What did I do? I walked right on down to Walmart, did my grocery shopping, and Tim and the girls picked me up when I was finished. Mission accomplished! The girls got their nap. I got the groceries. I gained a new appreciation for AAA. All of that on Saturday and not one single picture. I've also started walking at night with my friend Kim. Not every night(okay, I've only gone twice so far) but it's for an hour....4 miles I think! If you're gonna get some exercise it may as well be with a friend, right?

Church in the morning. The first half of our service is family worship...the kids stay with us. Along with the normal singing, the elders cover (with brief exposition) a chapter in the New Testament and a chapter in the Old Testament. My girls are relatively still and quiet, very well behaved really, but I never know if they're listening and learning anything. I mean, they're only 5 and 3 years old for crying out loud. Well, our OT reading was Isaiah 20. Have you read that lately? Yeah, me neither. Click here to read this very short chapter. As it was read aloud Miss O started to giggle, very quietly mind you, but uncontrollably. Do you know how hard it is to NOT laugh when she is giggling like that? GLASS HALF FULL ~ at least I know she was listening to the scripture being read! Also, Miss E decided to go to her class! Well, really it's Miss O's class, but the teacher is kind enough to allow little sister to join in....again. Then I remembered that I was supposed to take baby shower gifts for 2 women at church that are just moments away from having babies. I totally forgot..grrrrrrr! I had worked a little on Saturday evening on the gifts that I was sewing, but I didn't finish. I meant to take part of the gift, but oh well. I knew I'd see both that night at VBS family night so I finished up the sewing part and took it all to VBS. I made burp cloths. My girls thought they should be blankies...they do love their blankies and think that every baby should have one. One baby will be named Jonathan...he's the long awaited, much anticipated baby number 7. The other baby, another boy, who will be named Will is baby number 3, but the first boy. The dad is a Chaplain in the military scheduled to be deployed in September. I know. I know. Let's not talk about that...just pray for them. Here's a picture of the finished products.
VBS was fun for the girls. I was the snack lady again. Miss E went to her (Miss O's) class. They both had fun, enjoyed the lessons, loved the craft, and were both exhausted at the end.

Another muffin tin monday. The girls still enjoy it and look forward to it. They like the change of pace. It's just plain ol' fun. This lunch consisted of 1/2 a sunbutter & jelly sandwich, carrots, blueberries, cantaloupe, yogurt, and soybeans. Mmmmm

Still no green car. The garage didn't even get to it. No problem. We were a one car family for as long as I can remember. We didn't even get the second car until last spring. GLASS HALF FULL - having one car for a while will definitely save us some gas money.
So, now a completely different subject, but still Monday. I had seen, in a magazine, a super cute, itty bitty, powder pink laptop. Small, like 6X9 inches. Yeah, purse, diaper bag, pocket...okay not pocket, but definitely small enough for my purse. I showed it to Tim (he loves technology stuff) and told him how nice it would be to have. I could work on my blog at night after the girls go to bed and not interfere with his computer time. Ya know, reading the news, comparison shopping, unwinding after a long day at work. Oh, that little computer..only $300. Nothing fancy, but good for surfing the web...and blogging. I know, it's completely frivolous. I was just dreaming. Then, hey! don't we have the old laptop in the attic? The one that got a virus and did all kinds of crazy stuff 3 years ago. Oh yeah baby! Tim loves a computer, technology, technical, nearly impossible to fix challenge. He got it out of the attic and worked his magic...for a few hours. It.Still.Works!!! He got the operating system up and running and then went out to the get me, yeah me, a wireless card so I can blog freely. Wireless card in...a few more tweaks and codes and it works! But, he's a perfectionist. So as I type this he is working on making it just perfect then it will be all mine. He spoils me, really he does. No complaints here!

Still no green car. Tim took the "new" car to work. The girls and I stayed home...because Big Grandma came for a visit! School starts next week and she'll be back in the classroom. She came bearing gifts...yummy veggies from my Big Grandma at the farm, a couple books, hair bows and toy horses for the girls, and a huge, and I mean huge, hunk of fabric for me. I'm afraid I may have drooled on it a little. Wanna see it?
Well, the picture doesn't do it justice. It's really more lime green. I promise, it's fabulous! I want a skirt for me and the girls, maybe curtains for the girls' room, some many many yards (over 10 yards)!! Any grand suggestions?
Well, we had some good coffee, good conversation, lots of fun, and a nice lunch. Thanks Mama!
Okay, Tim said the laptop is done, ready, up to his standards. So, my next blog post should be typed from the comfort of my couch, or rocking chair, or big pillow on the floor.
I've got more to share, but it's late. Here's a hint: awards, very flattering, cheery awards from my friends out there in blogland!

Friday, August 8, 2008

exercise in disguise

My girls are by no means couch potatoes. They're book worms, serious artists, and possessors of vivid imaginations! They enjoy going outside to play but when it's hot they aren't too keen on the idea. Gnats and mosquitoes feast upon them if they stand still for even a moment. So how do I get them outside to get fresh air, to catch some rays, and get a little exercise? I disguise it all by having a wonderfully fun scavenger hunt! Who doesn't love a scavenger hunt, right? It takes a very small amount of planning on my part, but it is well worth every whine-free, wide-eyed moment. Instead of just having a scavenger hunt in our yard, I like to go for a nice long walk in our neighborhood...this is where the scavenger hunt eliminates the whining about walking so far. They get so busy looking for and finding the things on the list they forget how far we've walked or hot it is. I do try to go in the morning or later in the afternoon when it's cooler but during the summer sometimes there is no cool time of day!

First: I make a scavenger hunt list. I pick things that I know they can find on our walk, but things that they have to really look for...I don't want it to be too easy. When I write the list for Miss O to read I also add check boxes so the girls can check things off as we find them. I always draw a little picture for each item as well so that Miss E can "read" the list too.
Second: With scavenger hunt list in hand, we grab our cameras and we're off on the hunt. Every time the girls find something from the scavenger hunt list they get to check it off then take a picture of it.Third: Get some exercise! Hehe! All that walking (exercise) usually takes us about a half mile from home to a really big hill that is fun to run down (exercise) over and over. On the way home we usually find the remaining items from the list that were missed at the beginning of our walk.
Fourth: Make a journal entry that includes the scavenger hunt list and some of the pictures of the items found. Here's an example using Picasa, but I'd like to have tangible photos in a journal or scrapbook so we could add a new page after each adventure.*

Even if the the girls are reluctant at the beginning of our walk because it's hot or because they don't want to walk, they end up having lots of fun hunting, checking things off, and taking pictures. And usually along the way we find some unexpected things. One day we saw a cute baby bunny hiding under a while out on our scavenger hunt we spotted a cloud that kind of looked like a butterfly.
*All of this fun could be done on a nature walk through the woods, at a community market full of people & produce, on a road trip, at a zoo or aquarium, or even on a rainy day...right in your own home. Try's fun!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

thankful thursday

In ordinary life we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich. -- Dietrich Bonhoeffer
one - Although we really need a little rain right now, I am thankful that the girls' swimming lessons didn't get rained out. Today was the last day and we had a lot of fun!

two - afternoon walks with the girls - there are lots of pets in our neighborhood so the girls like to see how many we can find...we saw this little guy on our last walk and he was kind enough to smile for the camera!
three - fun at the playground - since we were completely without our normal routine these past two weeks we took advantage of the extra time in between and after swimming classes to join our friends at the playground...lots and lots of fabulous fun with friends!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

the good, the bad,....

...and the disgusting!

Oh, let's start with the good!
+THIS IS MY 100th BLOG POST!!!! Can you believe it?! Who knew I had so much to say? Well, my husband knew because evidently I talk a lot. You don't mind my yammering on and on do you? I mean, that is what blogs are for, right? As we head back into the swing of things with homeschool this year there will more "meat" in my writing. I must say, I have enjoyed blogging so far. And there are some really great, talented, wonderfully nice bloggers out there that I have "met". Woohoo! 100 posts!
+The girls have really been enjoying their swimming lessons. So they're not as comfortable in the water as I would like them to be, but they have certainly come a long way. And...tomorrow is family day so I get to join them in the pool-yippee! I may help them a little with overcoming that fear of being submerged :o) They'll never be able to race me in the pool if they don't relax a little and learn.
+My friend Kim was sneaky the other day while we were at the pool. She got a picture of me and E trying to convince O to go under the water. I promise, I'm not making a mean face. It's my 'come on you can do it, just give it a try' face. Funny that E is making the same face while adding in her 2 cents to the pep talk....she wouldn't put her head under the water either. Little stinkers!! So as I was saying...the picture is great, then Kim added some nice details...thanks Kim!
+My blog friend Zoe gave me an award! It's a blog award. Pretty exciting's my first one! She's so sweet! You should really go check out her blog. She's always got some kind of sewing or craft project in the works. Thanks so much Zoe...I promise I'll follow the rules...soon!
+Finally the beads are dry! We got to string them yesterday. The girls really enjoyed choosing which beads they wanted to use. Of course they whined and bickered over a few of them, but after all was said and done, they were happy with the results. Oh, and by the way, play-doh beads are a lot heavier than polymer clay beads.
Now, onto the bad.
-Is it just me or is there a lot more whining going on these days? There really is no excuse, it's just sin nature...but I loathe seeing it in my own children. Don't get me wrong, my girls are really well behaved the majority of the time. But every once in a while it's like the floodgates are opened and I have to remind them of what it means to obey, refocus their hearts, and realize that they aren't perfect..and neither am I.
-Okay, this is more annoying that bad, but our Walmart is in the midst of remodeling. I can't find anything! When I do find the general area of the items I need they are usually out of stock (or the stockers can't find where anything goes so they just don't restock the shelves) Either way, it resulted in a really disastrous meal!
I can't think of anything else bad (yippee) so now we're on to the disgusting.
~It has been a really long time since I have made a meal that is bad enough to throw away. It has probably been 6 or 7 years really. I'll admit, right here and now, that I am not the greatest cook in the world. Quite frankly, I used to be a really bad cook. I'm not sure why....I just was. I've never been one to whip up a meal without some type of recipe or framework to follow. I'm a recipe follower, I can't help it. After I make something once, completely by the book, the next time I make it I might tweak it a little, but never on the first go round. So last night I made chicken enchiladas. A recipe that I have used many times always with delicious results. Oh so yummy! It's a staple on my menu. We hadn't had it for a few weeks so it was time. We were all craving it. Oh wait, let me back up a little. When I went grocery shopping there was no enchilada sauce left...the kind that I like anyway. I bought a different brand's enchilada sauce, they should all be kinda the same. But, oh I was sooooooo wrong!!! Okay, so I make a big pan of enchiladas, all the while thinking the sauce smelled different, a little funny. But it was a different brand, so no big deal. Whilst that was baking and getting the cheese all melty I made something new. I made polenta. Polenta? yeah. It's a corn meal side dish that was supposed to be good...oh man, I was wrong again! So I get the enchiladas out of the oven and the sauce looks like tomato paste. Weird, the other brand never looked like that. Okay, so now I have to taste's weird, gross, indescribable. Maybe I'm just paranoid. So now I taste the polenta that has cooled and...eewww, that's pretty bad, too. What is up? I followed the recipe. Okay so maybe the enchiladas are salvageable. We wait for Tim to get home and taste them...not even he can hide his dislike, distain, disgust. Believe me, after almost 14 years he has gotten good at pretending that something "isn't really that bad". But not last night. The time in the kitchen...wasted. The food that I purchased and baked...wasted. The money spent on ingredients for a normally anticipated dish....wasted. Ughhh. It was really, really, really DISGUSTING! Into the garbage it went. So what did we eat? Tim had leftovers from a much more successful meal, the girls enjoyed a delicious sunbutter & banana sandwich, and I had a delightful bowl of raisin bran. Let's hope tonight's dinner is more edible successful!

Monday, August 4, 2008

so, sew happy!

I can't believe it's Monday already. My poor little blog has been neglected all weekend. It's not that we were super busy or anything, we were just hanging out. Oh shoot! I just realized that I didn't do Muffin Tin Monday today for lunch...totally forgot. Maybe I'll give it a try at dinner tonight.
So let's see...let me give you a quick update on a few things. Friday there were no swimming lessons, it's a make-up day in case it rains. My girls were kind of glad to stay at was I. They were fighting a little cold anyway, so it was good to get a little extra rest. I got the laundry done, some housework done, and I managed to squeeze in some sewing time :o) Meanwhile,Tim found a yellow jacket's nest in our yard (which has since been dealt with-we are yellow jacket free) that was very close to the clothesline which the girls like to play around while I'm hanging up the laundry. So the girls were limited to playing on the porch and driveway. Not fun they thought. However, while they were playing on the porch they came across some spider webs and little bugs, which kept them happy and occupied. Miss O said "I blew a big bug off the bench." (there's a bench on the porch) Then she said "Hey, that sounded cool, did you hear that Mom? I said 'I blew a big bug off the bench'. Most of those words start with the letter B!" Seriously people, I promise I had not previously shared with her my love of alliteration. But guess what, she thought it was great! You know I had to have a little language arts lesson right there with pile of clean wet clothes in one hand and some clothespins in the other. Can you guess what happened next? Go ahead, guess. Yeah, she started coming up with lots and lots of alliterations-hehehe- and little sis had to join right in! Oh, my little whippersnappers, they had so much fun with that. It's a teacher's dream come true! Okay, now onto the sewing. A while back, like maybe six months ago, my Grandma gave me a whole bunch of calico fat quarters that someone had given to her. She's not a quilter. She likes to make clothes when she sews...all the rest of her time is spent crocheting. Anyhoo,




I followed the pattern for the "Orange Crush" apron designed by Erin Harris. I made it a little shorter in length and since it was supposed to be lined I decided to just make it reversible. Not too shabby for my first one. Okay, so it was all squares and rectangles, which only requires sewing straight lines, but still I made it, I love it, and I'm ready to make another one. I've never really been an apron wearer. I'm a messy cook so it makes sense that I should wear an apron, and since it has the loop for the towel I won't be hanging it over my shoulder getting my shirt all wet either.
Let's see what else have we done lately. Oh, I know...we got a book from the library a couple of weeks ago called A String of Beads by Margarette S. Reid. Actually, Miss E picked it because she loved the girl. We've read the book several times and learned about all sorts of beads as well as a quick and simple history of beads and their uses and purposes in different cultures. Quite interesting really. So, you know we had to make some beads, right? The only thing we had to work with was Play-Doh and, knowing how hard it is when it dries, I thought it would make great beads. Getting over the mixing together of the different colors is a whole other thing, but I survived. The girls and I had a ball rolling and shaping the beads. I used a needle to poke a hole through each one, now we are just waiting for them to harden all the way. It's taking longer than I thought it would, but the girls have been checking them every day by gently squeezing them. Soon, they'll be stringing the beads to make a necklace or something.
Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy! As I am sitting here writing this extremely long blog post, Tim brings in the mail. Not just any old prize from the Dress-up Giveaway! I'm so excited! Okay, hold on a sec while I open it......alright, I'm back. Hurrayic is the blog that had the Dress-up Giveaway. You should drop by there sometime. She's got all kinds of great stuff going on. So here is a picture of all my goodies, plus she threw in some bias tape and some lace...and a nice note. Now I must go and figure out exactly what to make for the dress-up box so I can fulfill my part of the giveaway. Naptime is over anyway...gotta go!

****apron update****
It was brought to my attention that there is no picture of me wearing the new Orange Crush apron. So here it is! Please excuse the wrinkles, the junk under the girls' bed, and the finger prints and face prints dirty mirror. I really should have the girls clean that off again.