Friday, December 02, 2011

Nine years old...

Cursive nine birthday shirt
I remember being nine. My family moved when I was nine. Nine felt very big. Here I am on the flip side. Nine still seems big, just not in the same way. Now, it feels too big! How did that sweet curly haired baby grow up so fast? Nine is a milestone. I am halfway through the time where she is mine. In nine short years (and it is SO short) she will be 18, getting ready to graduate high school, and embarking on life. If my life ever needed a pause button, now is that time. Please S L O W  D O W N!

I loved Aurora's birthday list. She wanted some books (Little House on the Prairie), to get her ears pierced, a set of golf clubs, and to hike to Delicate Arch. She didn't get golf clubs (Christmas maybe?), but three out of four isn't too bad. Aurora noticed earrings when she was 4, and she wanted in! I had to wait until I was 10, but since I am less strict, and far more reasonable than my parents (wink,wink) I told her if she still wanted them pierced when she was 9, we'd do it...
I should have said 12! (click to enlarge)
Can you believe that picture? She is so grown up...but I still see my sweet baby with her first cake, and feel like somehow that day was both yesterday and an eternity ago.
We let her plan the whole day. It was filled with a special breakfast (pumpkin waffles!), a trip to the piercing studio, dinner and a movie with the family, skyping not only grandma and grandpa, but some great friends as well, games, presents, and to top it off, birthday cake pie. It was a great day.

We went to Arches in August, and Aurora really wanted to hike to Delicate Arch. Anyone who knows me, knows that I detest hot weather. Moab in August is HOT, so a three mile hike, with no shade in 100+ temps was not going to happen. I told her we'd come back when it was cooler. November is much much cooler. So with coats, hats and mittens, we set off, first thing in the morning for Delicate Arch. It did not disappoint.
Nine Years and six days :)
We had fun in August, but this trip was spectacular. The kids spent hours climbing, digging in sand, scaling arches, and just appreciating nature. It is one of my all time favorite trips. I even got a family picture that might entice me to send out Christmas cards this year (maybe....we'll see how long this cold hangs on) Thanks for the great birthday wish Aurora!
I love you Aurora. I am so proud to be your mom. The moment I realized you were coming, my life changed for the better. It isn't always easy, but being your mom has been the best surprise of my life. (now slow down ok?)

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Halloween and some random craftiness

I cannot believe that we are less than two months away from 2012. I feel like I am living in a time warp. In the moment things seem slow, but the days are flying by. Here we are, Halloween is over. I keep Halloween fairly low key. I don't love carving pumpkins, but when I noticed my kids drawing faces on the rose hips, I decided we could go ahead and carve some pumpkins. The real jack-o-lantern pictures weren't great.....but I love the rose hip versions!

Eve has been asking to be a vampire for a year. The main request was to have white skin and a cape. Aurora asked if she could be Ramona Quimby. She loved the movie that came out last year and really wanted to be THAT Ramona. That Ramona had an orange shirt with a kitty appliqued on it. Ramona also wore red rain boots. I was able to piece most of the costumes from things we had, but I dyed and appliqued the shirt, and sewed the cape. Most of the stuff can just be added to their closets. Which I love. Their dress up bin is over flowing! I'd rather have things they can wear everyday (and if you are Eve, this includes a green velvet cape).

It was down to the wire, but I got the costumes made. This was partially because in a last ditch effort to get my kids to clean up the floor of their bedroom, I said I would make the time for costumes when they made the time for cleaning. I should have set a deadline. I was up very late. Which partially explains this: 


I stayed up all night Saturday night (ie the costumes were done at 10 am Sunday morning), and didn't get to nap much Sunday. When I woke up on Monday, I intended to just put on a shirt with skulls on it and go to the Halloween parade at the school. I wanted a little more sleep, but I really needed to wash my hair. That is when inspiration hit. Zombies don't wash their hair. So I slept a bit longer, got up, ripped up one of Jeremy's old shirts, put on some make up and voila! ZOMBIE! So easy! I wish I could to this every day. :)

Aside from Halloween, I didn't get much crafting done. That is except for during UEA. During UEA I decided to produce the least productive thing I could come up with. A newborn size hat that looks like a Thanksgiving turkey!

I had a nephew due anytime, and he needed this hat. And since the hat is ridiculous, I also knit him a vest that, while it does coordinate with the hat, is cute and not ridiculous. (the lighting is different in the 2 pics, but the browns are the same yarn. In real life, it looks more like the turkey)


Yesterday that sweet baby boy was born. I now have 32 nieces and nephews! I should get to meet this newest addition on Thanksgiving. Hopefully, I will have pictures of him wearing the hat for next month!  


Welcome to the world sweet William. I feel it necessary to point out, that you have a very beautiful mother. No one looks this good right after giving birth except her. Do not expect this from other women in your life. :)

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Need to recharge

The last month and a half have kind of taken me for a ride. There were some big changes at my daycare that I was really unprepared for. Those changes added a lot to the usual beginning of the school year schedule shuffle. I have been having a hard time adjusting. My BFF knew this, and since she couldn't get away from work, she arranged for my younger sister Natalie to come spend some time with me. I have the best sister is pretty great too! It has been almost 2 weeks, and we spent almost everyday at the daycare, but this weekend, we were able to go to Boise to see two of our older siblings. We stayed with our sister Jenny, who is going to have a baby in a few weeks. Before we went up we made a little outfit for her new addition. I always have a hard time sewing for baby boys, but Natalie was full of ideas. And while we were there, we helped Jen make costumes for her family. Unfortunately, even though I remembered my camera, it was out of batteries, so we only got cell phone pictures.

I have a really hard time not being jealous of people who live close to their family. This weekend gave me a little glimpse of what it would be like. I really love my sisters (and brothers!) I am sad my kids don't know their cousins and aunts and uncles better. I wish I could be closer to help out when babies are born, and to do some regular crafting with my sisters. I have dreams of babysitting swaps, and girls nights out. They are really nice dreams. For now, I guess I will just savor the moments we have, and try to make them happen more often. (thanks Janelle for helping make this weekend possible! Now I want to spend a weekend with you and your family!!)

Friday, September 02, 2011

Arches and Back to School

Summer has flown by. Since we took a big vacation in March we planned to spend most the summer at home, but we finally got away from the city for a weekend. We'd never been to Arches. The kids loved most of the hikes, and Aurora has even requested to go back for her birthday. Even though it was hot we had a great time. I took a lot of pictures.....

Then I stopped taking pictures. I did a little knitting. Here is Aurora wearing a slouchy beret I made for her. I am working on one for Eve too. 

Last, but not least, school started. Aurora has been counting down to school pretty much since school got out. They love school, their teachers, and all the time with friends. I never thought I'd be one of "those" moms, but I was also very excited for school. Since I take my kids to work, summer can be a bit rough. School is in, we are getting in a routine, and loving it. :) Here they are on their first day of school.  (and notice the pretty door!)

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

One year older and wiser too...

Wiser? Maybe...can you be wise and also be losing your mind/memory? I will say yes. Last month I turned the big THREE-THREE! This age is weird. Some people think I am SO young, "a baby really". Some people think I am SO old "There is no way you are THAT old!!"....and really, I don't feel old or young. I am firmly planted in the "in between" I like it here...I think I'll stay for a bit.

I really enjoyed turning 33. I was lucky enough to have BFF Janelle and her sister Karen in town. I ate at a couple of my favorite restaurants. I had cheesecake and a delicious chocolate cake (that I loved! Thank you Karen!!) I was able to spend the whole day with people I really like. It was fantastic. Thanks everyone....and Janelle, you set the bar pretty high this year. Canadian food, hand knit sweaters for my kids, and a card that makes me teary EVERY time I read it...Thanks. You really are the sister I got to hand pick. (Your family is pretty great too. Tell them thanks for letting me be an honorary member)

Last week, I got a birthday package from my sister Natalie. She is only 13 months younger than I am and one of my very best friends. When I was about 5 years old, I loved Strawberry Shortcake. Some kind soul (my mom? the Avon lady?? I don't remember) gave me some Strawberry Shortcake lip gloss. I loved that lip gloss. A lot. I seldom let it out of my sight....until one day, I left it in the bathroom. When I found it, there were little smudges of lip gloss all around it and then I took off the lid. I was horrified. Little teeth marks! Someone had eaten my lip gloss. Or rather, Natalie had. She said it was delicious. It was a sad sad day. No lip gloss ever lived up to the glory of my very first...that is until last week.

Thanks Nat. I love them. I am considering sharing with my kids.....maybe.

P.S. One last thing, I finished off the month with a quick visit from a very good friend that deserted me moved away. Kim (aka Prairie Mama) and I got to have dinner and spend some time together on Saturday. (Why is it that my very best friends live in Ontario Canada, Texas and Alabama?? And more importantly, is someone working on that Star Trek "beaming" technology? I need it!) Kim introduced me to her newest addition. Elliott is such a sweet little babe! He also looks SO MUCH like his older siblings. Plus he smells like heaven. Thanks for making time for me Kim. I loved every minute. Logan was too far....Texas?? *sigh* I miss you lady.

Saturday, July 02, 2011


My house is really really old. The kind of old where you really should be a decent "do it yourself-er". Either that, or you should have some sort of trust fund. Sadly, we have neither of those attributes. When we moved into this house, I thought it would look great red. That's pretty much as far as it got. I was pregnant and working and really had no time. Fast forward 9 years.

Doesn't it look great? Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I usually post stuff I have done, but Jeremy did most of this. I helped, but 95% of the work was Jeremy. He did a fantastic job, and I love it. I will also insist on paying someone if we ever decide to paint our house again.

Painting was a big part of June, but aside from that it was still a busy month. Birthday parties, friendship blankets, teacher gifts, out of town guests, and my favorite part was that Eve lost one of her front teeth. I really love a toothless smile. :)

Onto July! Tomorrow is a busy airport day that will end with Janelle and her sister Karen coming for 10 days. Best birthday present ever! (unless you can think of something have 7 days. Let me know if you come up with something!)

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Random Unrelated Children

I think I have mentioned before how ridiculous it is to try to photograph my kids. Don't get me wrong. They are cute, and I even get a decent number of good snap shots. However, if I need a picture? If I want to pose them?? I usually end up taking a deep breath, rolling my eyes, and walking away. How do people get their kids to co-operate? HOW?!?!?!

A couple weeks ago I made some shirts for my girls. I used a $5 Old Navy shirt and some ruffle fabric. Two hours later, adorable!! I should post these for my friends on facebook!
Um, let's try that again...
Well, one of them looks normal...
I give up. (there were OH.SO.MANY more, but I was deleting them on the camera. I regret that now. It would have made a hilarious collage)

Only, I really want to show people my mad skills and my cute kids. I could just take a picture of the shirts. I did take a pic of the shirts, but they are SO cute on. So I convince the children to let me take one more. We'll even do it on the porch so the sun can't scorch your eyes...
Success! Cute shirts, cute kids, and they are even wearing identical outfits. Aw! Such a sweet sister picture... except they don't look like sisters! They hardly even look related. Jeremy and I each have our own signature kid...except the skin tone. Somehow that got flipped. Genetics are weird and fascinating! How do some people get 6 kids that look like a row of nesting dolls, while mine look like random strangers I snagged and sat next to each other? If I had a third child would it be a mix? another signature kid? secret option 3? Really, I want to know. And if I could find out hypothetically, and without the 9 month incubation period, that would be preferred.

In other news,

After waiting almost 18 months, I FINALLY got to go to the U2 concert last week. It was worth the wait. The only things that could have made it better would have been Natalie and Moons Over My Hammy. :)

Monday, May 02, 2011

Real life (or a lack there of)

Returning to real life after a vacation is hard. It is harder when you return only to leave again, and come home to the best house guest of all time. That is a sum up of April.  I could end the blog there...but really, that would be cheating...and I like the pictures.

A week after we got back from Africa my older sister Janelle was due to have a baby. She lives in California, and my younger sister, Natalie and I wanted to be there for her. So Natalie flew in from Alabama with her adorable baby, Eleanor, and the three of us made the trek to southern California. Eleanor is perhaps the best traveler in the whole world. (here is Eleanor and I playing in the car while her mom took a potty break)

The day after we arrived (less than 24 hours after we got in) Mosetta Rose was born. We were so glad we made the trip, and that we were able to be there for her birth.

Since "real life" doesn't stop, even when a baby is born, Natalie and I had to get back to our families and responsibilities too soon afterward. Luckily, I had something to soften the blow.

My friend Janelle came to visit for 2 weeks. Yes, it is a little weird, that I have a sister and a friend both named Janelle. And yes, we are capable of really awesome polygamist style hair dos. Why did we try this? Um, because we could. Also, we were sewing, and it seemed like the right thing to do. I am still happy about the choice. :) The rest of the 2 weeks was filled with crazy weather, a lot of "name blankets" (I think I am almost caught up on the baby boom!) and Janelle's birthday.

Janelle always comes for someone's birthday. I am glad this time it was hers....even if she is extremely hard to shop for! Thanks Janelle! Come back any time, for as long as you want. I really mean it. You are as close as I'll ever come to having a sister wife.... LOL

After Janelle left, I decided I was officially back to real life, and I better do something really productive with the rest of my month. So, with my business partner's help, we got what I was afraid was turning into an eternal work in progress, up and running. Announcing the opening of our etsy fabric shop Seamless Appeal!
I might even be able to swing a coupon code for any interested blog reader. :)

Saturday, April 02, 2011


Last month my family traveled to South Africa. I don't think I can do it justice with words, so here are some picture highlights (click on them to make them larger).

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Best Weekend Ever- 5 3/4 Years Old Style

I think that six is a golden age. It is old enough to be a bit independent, still young enough that you have very little actual responsibility, and simple enough that most problems can be solved with an ice cream cone (or maybe a balloon). It is a great age. Eve isn't quite 6, but she is definitely in that golden age of simple pleasures.

 A few weeks ago, Eve's class got a new "student". Puff, a little dingy white teddy bear, joined the class. He arrived with a backpack, a journal, and a request for friends. Puff visits this kindergarten class every year.  Each child in the class gets the opportunity to take him home for a night and journal how they spent their evening with Puff. When Eve's turn came up, we hit the jack pot. We got Puff for a WHOLE weekend. The second she got in the door from school she was off. You see, Puff didn't come with clothes (with the exception of some jammies the child before had gifted him) and in Eve's world, EVERYTHING wants to wear clothes. E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G. Approximately 90 seconds later she emerged with a newly outfitted Puff.

This is a look I like to call "Pimpin' Puff". I guess Hello Kitty graciously opened her closet, and since it was cold outside, My Friend Mandy pitched in her coat. Awesome. Puff played a little Wii, tagged along and cheered at basketball games, and even joined the weekly pilgrimage to Costco.

At some point, Eve made a plea on Puff's behalf. As cool as dressing in borrowed rhinestone pants and a fur trimmed corduroy coat is, Puff wanted some clothes of his own. I decided that we could accommodate.

Eve's response? BEST WEEKEND EVER!!!

I think Puff approved too. :)

P.S. I had intended to show you something I finished this month, but since its recipient has yet to receive it, I am holding off. I will, however, give you a sneak peek of another something I am working on right now (I am SO excited about this!)

Maybe, just maybe, I will break tradition and give you a peek of the two (plus a few) projects together at mid month. Oh, and put April 2nd on your calendar. I have something SPECTACULAR to show you! :)

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Favorite things: January 2011

This blog title makes me feel like I am Martha Stewart or Oprah and I should be giving something away. I am not giving anything away...wait maybe I am, but you will have to read through my favorite things first.

January was a busy month. I think I should have some sort of exciting story, but it was everyday life busy. Nothing exciting or fun, just a whole lot of obligation and over committing converging into one glorious month. Because of this I was at a loss for what I should blog. Crafting was pretty sparse, and I was too busy to take pictures. Even if I had a hundred pictures, there was nothing interesting to photograph. What to blog? Then it hit me! I have stumbled into a few things I really like this month. So lucky you, you get to read about the things I found and love.

1- My favorite parenting guru:
Barbara Coloroso

I am taking a parenting class at my daughters' school. It is sort of a kinder gentler version of Love and Logic, and a lot of what we are learning comes directly from Barbara Coloroso. We have been watching her video "Winning at parenting, without beating your kids" I swear everything this woman says is GOLD! Her basic idea is that every child needs six critical life messages: I believe in you. I trust in you. I know you can handle this. You are listened to. You are cared for. and You are very important to me. Love her. I need a Barbara Coloroso App for my phone (seriously, if I knew how to make one, I'd do it). Or better yet, she could just whisper in my ear 24/7. I would be such an amazing parent. As it is I am trying. I just got her book Kids Are Worth It! from the library. Google her, watch a few of her videos and thank me later. Really. Her approach is firm, yet kind, and is all about respect. I love it. Plus, in her video she looks like Dorothy from the Golden Girls. Two words: White suit. LOVE IT!

2-Sock Buns:

Sock buns before bed
Something you should know about me. I love sleep. LOVE IT. So while, in theory, I like to look nice everyday, I like sleeping a lot more. What does this mean? Pony tail. Why get up 30-45 min earlier just to make my hair nice? That is crazy. Who am I trying to impress? No one. The problem is that every time I see a picture I think WHAT?!?! I do NOT look like that. Only I do...and worse. So when BFF Janelle showed me these videos it was revolutionary. I can go to bed looking like Princess Leia, and wake up with curled hair! Sign me up!
Sock bun curled hair at 9 am
And, the curls lasts all day! (excuse the picture, my husband is seldom an enthusiastic photographer)
Sock bun curled hair at 9 pm
As an added bonus, it keeps my hair out of my face when I sleep AND my hair isn't getting damaged by a curling iron. Win, win, win! I will warn you that those videos are crazy long, on the first one, once you see how to make the sock bun, skip to 3:53. On the 2nd one just skip through her talking. She likes to yammer.  As pictured above, I like doing 2 sock buns instead of one. I get better curl that way. And if you have really fine hair like I do, you might want to use a child's sock. Also, saying sock buns is fun.

3- My new favorite "fun things to do with the kids" website:
2 of my puppets
I like to color. So do my kids. This month, at her daughter's birthday party, my business partner introduced me to There are hundreds of coloring pages and articulated puppets to color, cut out and put together with tiny brads. I love them! They keep my kids busy for hours, and they are fun to play with. You should hear the adventures the fairies have at my house. They are pretty girly (what can I say, my house is oozing glitter), but there are boy fairies, a cool dragon, and even Harry Potter has unicorns, so boys don't need to feel left out. Do yourself a favor and run to Michael's for the brads first though. Otherwise pieces get lost, children cry, there is much sadness in the land...not that I have any experience there. I'm just sayin'.

4- Pay it Forward swaps:

I did a pay it forward swap ages ago (at least 2 years ago). The rules say you have a year to get the gifts out to the takers. I broke that rule, by at least a year. In fact, I think my cousin Karley is still waiting. Sorry Karley! So what does a girl with an over due, unfinished PIF obligation do? I agreed to do another one! Then totally forgot about it. I know. Fast forward a year and a few weeks ago.  I got a package in the mail. I love packages! It had that adorable pink bag (Picture borrowed from Beth's blog) in it, a little bottle of Best Press, and some candy. Sweet! So, good news Karley! I am doing it another PIF, and you will be my extra special first receiver. Here are the rules:

1. I will make a little something for the first THREE people who comment on this post with PIF in their comments (Three plus Karley). It will be a surprise and it will arrive on your doorstep when you least expect it!

2. I will have 365 days to do it in. What's the catch? To get a handmade present from me, you have to play too. This means YOU pledge to send a little handmade something to people you know. (you don't have to sew, cookies are handmade too!)

3. You must have a blog. Skip that, you can do what you want. Facebook, neighbors...whatever.

4. Once you comment here, you must post about your Pay It Forward on your blog to keep the fun going, with the Pay It Forward badge.  Meh, just pay-it-forward. Blog, Facebook, a note on top of the cookies, your call.

If I don't get three takers here, I will put this on my facebook too. I am a little excited about my PIF plans. They'll be good. Or at least I think they will be, if you, you have bad taste ;)

So there you are. My favorite things from January, AND I am even giving things away. Wow, now I know what it feel like to be Oprah.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

December Blur

December is one of those months that always seems like a blur. I think I will get started early, and instead I find myself up all night Christmas Eve. This year was no exception...but before we skip straight to Christmas, I will show you a tiny bit of the build up.

I am not sure if I actually made this in December, but the pictures were taken in December, so I will say it counts.

This summer my sister hosted our extended family IN HER HOME for a family reunion. Over thirty people. Jenny is amazing. Not only was it a great time, but the reunion also happened to coincide with her birthday. Because of this, and as a thank you, I promised her an apron. It took me four months to deliver, so long that Jenny had completely forgotten about my promise. The sad part is that I think I picked out the fabric for her apron over 2 years ago. It just went to the bottom of the project pile and out of sight out of mind. *sigh* It is done now, and it did make for a great surprise.

My second project was something I never thought I'd take on. At the beginning of the month a parent in Eve's class asked if I thought I could make a Cabbage Patch doll. She had found a head at a thrift store, but didn't want to take the project on. I knew I should decline, but I like to help out, and I wanted to see if I could do this. I am SO glad I did! It was a fun project, and I think there will be more of these in my future.

Isn't she cute? I had so much fun recreating the look of a real Cabbage Patch doll. Aurora and Eve would now like their own dolls with purple and blue hair respectively...I am not sure I want to start making custom heads, but I would like to make a few more. My favorite part about this doll (aside from her bum and belly button. They were really cute!) is that I couldn't find fabric the right color for the skin, so I dyed it. To my surprise, it was a perfect match for the face! WOO HOO!! (really I yelled that when I pulled the dyed fabric out of the dryer)

And now to Christmas. Oh Christmas. I had such good intentions. Matching outfits and jammies, some blankets and maybe even some doll things. I also had plans for a few special friends. Well, my poor friends got left behind (I do love you all I promise!!) and my kids got store bought jammies. The matching outfits did happen, but only under the pressure of a Glee concert.

I have mentioned my kids' total inability to pose in a normal fashion haven't I? Good. Then you aren't surprised by the picture. :)

The only "momma made" gifts the girls got on Christmas morning, were name blankets. They have both been getting jealous of all the new babies getting blankets with their names on them. When I made their cousin Juliana a big sister name blanket, official requests were made. So I stayed up late late late on Christmas Eve making blanket sets for the girls. One for them, and one for their dolls. They were very well received. (which made the late night very worth it)

After Christmas we made a long snowy trek to central Wyoming for New Years. It was VERY cold, but the kids had a great time sledding, ice skating, jumping on snow filled trampolines, and hanging around with cousins. It was a great way to round out 2010.

December also meant saying goodbye to some amazing friends. Somehow, this was yet another thing that I didn't manage photograph. We do have some excellent memories. Kim, Jeremy, Seth, Amelia and Libby, we miss you all terribly. It wasn't the same ringing in the New Year without you....and we'll Skype soon (don't get any ideas Kim!) :)

Hope you had a fantastic holiday season, and may you have a wonderful 2011.

P.S. I am not one for resolutions. I only break them, but I am not opposed to a goal or two. Last year, I set a goal to read 24 books in 2010. I made that goal by the skin of my teeth. (see list of books read in my sidebar) This year, I would like to up the ante and read 36 books. I have a few books in queue, but if you care to make a recommendation, I'm all ears!