Wednesday, December 31, 2008

patient a



She looks so sweet and innocent. But don't be fooled, this little girl packs some serious dynamite. Her precious giggles were apparently laced with a nasty strain of flu and she took out nearly our entire family over Christmas. She even gave everyone a stealth version of the flu that was triggered by travel resulting in some really miserable drives and flights home for all involved.

Only 4 remain, who will be the next to fall....

And to the businesses along US HWY 82, I have no idea where the puke bags came from. None.


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

ol' blue eyes


crafting from the stash: wool felt hats



The girls over at kojo found this great idea from Martha Stewart on using felt to make fun little hats. Really simple. I stitched both of the kids hats by hand, it would be even easier with a sewing machine. I made mine a little big (oops) and then felted them again in the washer which shrunk them down to the perfect size.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

crafting from the stash: percy and petunia



These were really simple and very easy. Moo really loved helping pick buttons and colors for the monsters. These are basically funny shaped pillows. Take some old fabric draw a monster shape, add weird eyes and mouth, sew, and stuff. Moo named his Percy after Thomas the Tank Engines best friend Percy. Obsessed.

crafting from the trash: petticoat on the cheap




I really like the fancy petticoats you can find on etsy and photographers sites for little girls. They are over the top princess, love it. I wanted to make one of my own but was leery of sewing all that slippery fabric. I picked up this girls slip at a consignment sale a couple months ago for a dollar. I cut the top off and added another layer of tulle (left from our wedding!) to make it more fluffy. It was pretty simple and Ella Bella loves wearing it and playing with all the fluff.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

smooth

I often tease my husband mercilessly for his little life mishaps. For example, dressing Ella Bella in a sweater and t-shirt. Most of us would put the t-shirt on, then the sweater. Nope. Not my husband. Sweater then t-shirt. Poor guy.

God must be thinking I need to learn a little humility in this area.

For example, cutting decorative pine cones off your pre-lit Christmas tree is not the best idea. It may result in snipping the Christmas lights and mildly shocking yourself. Not that I would do that. I also wouldn't realize after cloth diapering for nearly 3 months that the container I have been putting dirty diapers in wasn't completely waterproof. Or a couple weeks ago when I took newborn photos of my friends baby and deleted them all before I left her house. Nooooooooo, not me. Oh well.

Well, now you know..... I am seriously flawed.

Back to regular, photo filled postings soon. And, gee this is suppossed to be a creative blog and all I do is yammer on about my kids. I promise some easy creative projects are coming.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

keeping it simple

I am hoping for a simple Christmas. I want to enjoy these precious days of celebration with my sweet kids and family. I want to say yes to friends and family and enjoying the simple things in the holiday. Yes to long evenings of hot chocolate, good company, and imperfection.

But, can you feel it?

The ads, the craziness, the shopping frenzy, the frantic cookie making, the wrapping, the lines, the cursing (or is that just me?). It tries to suck me. It tempts me with alluring deals and superficial holiday merriment in the form of gaudy Christmas decorations.

The truth is this.

I don't need another thing.
My kids don't need another toy.
My husband doesn't need another gadget.

It was simple. One baby. One starry night. One stable. One promise fulfilled.

That is what I want my kids to learn about Christmas.

So, we will be keeping it simple.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

happy birthday auntie m!




What???? My aunt is how old? Wow! That's shocking! Happy Birthday Auntie M! We hope you have a great turkey day.

video

Saturday, November 15, 2008

before I forget....

Eh, this might be of some interest to the grandmothers. My apologies to everyone else.

Ella Bella's latest stats @ 6 months old.
19lbs 7oz and 27.5 inches long.
95% height, 95% weight, and 60% head.

Also, what would you do in this predicament. You feed your child with plans of giving her and her brother a bath afterwords. You burp her and she proceeds to "toss" the "whole load" directly down your shirt. She has a little bit of mess on her, but not nearly the half gallon (slight exaggeration) that you are covered in, mostly in your hair.

What would you do?

If you are me, you say see ya kids.... pop in the wiggles, warn your 2 -year old of the perils of hurting little sis and go take a nice long shower yourself. And wash your hair several times... Eh, probably not the BEST choice... but it sure was refreshing!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

budding bibliophile



Moo's book stash, I sorted through them the other night and got them down to a more manageable number of books for a preschooler. It must have worked because we have been reading ever since!

Most of the books are from my parents. They are bibliophiles themselves. When we moved from my childhood home I got the lucky task of packing up books. I lost count well into the thousands. I am so very thankful they are passing on their love of books to my kids, but seriously... I need a bigger house!

crafting from the stash: baby leg warmers



I am determined not to buy anymore crafting goodies until I use up some of my craft stash. So, here is the first project. I love the idea of Babylegs, but not the price. I found this great tutorial on how to make your own baby leg warmers and knocked out a dozen pairs for little miss.

Funny thing, I overestimated the length of Miss things legs and underestimated the girth (fattiness) of them, so i have a few too long, too skinny pairs. I bet they will fit Moo perfectly....

Happy crafting!

halfy birthday ella bella chunka monka!



I can't believe this precious little girl has been here for only six months, it's hard to remember not having her in our family. She is such a happy, easy baby. She squeals with delight when I dress her in fluffy dresses and waves her chunky little arms excitedly at the site of her brother. She is obsessed with our cat and tries to eat her. She growls like a possessed baby and squeals like a dentists drill. She rolls over and sits up, and rocks her jumparoo. She doesn't care for baby cereal, I know she is holding out for the good stuff. She grabs food off of peoples plates and will fuss if we are eating and she is not.

She is divine. And a keeper. And huge!

Photos @ 1 week, 3 months, and 6 months.





Saturday, November 1, 2008

Boo!














Monday, October 27, 2008

officially a wimpy white boy


1. This is a great book dad.
2. Really interesting. Check out that starfish.
3. Hey, why is that lady messing with my back.
4. %$#@#! MOM! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

60 plus pricks and 3 vials of blood later.....

He is allergic!

Moo is officially allergic to peanuts, which we have suspected since his first birthday. An extra special bonus is finding out that he is also allergic to eggs. And milk. And shellfish. Woohoo! Feeding him is going to be FUN! Actually, we give him milk and dairy every day and eggs several times a week with no adverse reactions so we can continue doing that. Thankfully (or not), his "asthma" seems to be a systemic allergic reaction to peanuts or peanut dust. Unfortunately for him, we live in the middle of a giant peanut filed here in West Texas.

This is just the pricks on his little back, both his arms had them in 3 rows up and down the length of his arms. The ones on his back were all "neagative" and his left arm looked like one giant hive by the time we left since thats where the peanut was. They actually had to give him zyrtec and benadryl before we left because he had broken out in hives from the peanuts.

I guess he will be playing in a plastic bubble with our little nieghbor M and his good friend L and they can have a grand time eating peanut-lactose-shellfish-egg free snacks.


Saturday, October 18, 2008

fingers crossed

fingers crossed for bigger, brighter photos

Thursday, October 16, 2008

cheap thrills

1. Whack-o-lantern:
Inspired by this fun idea from Wondertime, Moo and I went to down whacking golf tees into a pumpkin to make this twist on the typical jack-o-lantern. I would suggest using something with a larger circumference than a golf tee, like a large Phillips screwdriver. The golf tee holes were too small to see any light through even with 3 candles inside. Moo also lost interest after about 3 golf tees, however was really impressed by the pumpkin seeds and the FIRE. Like father, like son.


2. Rub My Tummy?
Moo's new way of complementing my cooking is to say "Rub my tummy." when he approves. This chili must not have been worthy of tummy rubbin' since it got creatively places in a toy car. Thanks. At least it was much easier to clean than Thomas and Friends and their creative conquest through the bagels and cream cheese. And yes, I am a slow learner, and yes... I should watch my kid while he eats.


3. Helping Hands
Occasionally, Moo wants to "help" with the laundry. His help usually consists of jumping through newly folded stacks of clothes while showing me the lone washcloth he has folded. This day I managed to convince him that sitting in the laundry basket would be a great help. Ellie has been sitting in one since she is far from mastering her new sitting up skills.

a woman of the cloth: part one


Cost, to date:
14 bumgenius 3.0 diapers: $114.85
Purex detergent: $5.96 (should last about 6-8 months)

I don't plan on getting any more cloth diapers at this point, 14 is enough to get through 2-3 days since we will still use disposables when we are at church or shoving our kid in a pumpkin. I do want a washable liner bag for the trash can and Ella Bella's diaper bag. Also, a diaper pail or lidded trash can would be great.

Ick factor:
Umm, it's really not bad. No swishing things in the toilet. TMI, but "solids" dump in the toilet and everything else spins out in the wash. It has about the same grossness factor as disposables.

Ease of use:
These are as easy to put on as disposable diapers. No pins. There is a little extra work in washing and folding them, but nothing that takes more than a few minutes every other day. Washing is easy too, once on cold with 1/4 ammount detergent and then once on hot with 1/4 load's worth of detergent. Dry outside or in the dryer. Certainly no more work than taking out the bag of disposable diapers to the trash. These are definately not your mama's cloth diapers.

Efficiency:
They work WELL! Ella Bella had been leaking out of all sorts of disposable diapers and these *usually* contain the wet. So far, we have had no "blow-outs". They work well on Moo, too.

Overall, we have been pleasantly surprised with how well the diapers work and how easy they are to use. I would have never thought we would use cloth diapers because I thought it would be so insanely gross. But it's not. And it's easy.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Pumpkin

Moo, September 2006

As sure as being born into this family means super awkward, scrawny, acne ridden teen years (sorry kids), it also means being shoved into a pumpkin during your first autumn for your mother's amusement (again, sorry kids).

Ella Bella, October 2008

Whatever sister gets to do, I am doing too! "I too big!"

Hubs was not amused by this little photo escapade. I thought my joke about our frugal organic baby carrier was a riot. He is soooooooo humor impaired sometimes...

Sunday, October 12, 2008

anniversary

October 13, 2004

It was a cold, cloudy, and windy day and I had been at work watching some sweet kids from church and was on my way home. It was late afternoon and I was ready to head home and kick back. I was thinking about nothing in particular waiting for the green arrow to turn left.

The words came across my heart as clearly as anyone has ever spoken to me.

"Do not go in your house. Do not go inside."

I drove the last 1/4 mile to my house with fear rolling my mind. I immediately noticed our bedroom light was on through a broken window blind. It was off when I left. I creeped around the side of my house and saw our back window was busted in. NO NO NO. Not again. We had been robbed. Again. For the second time in 3 months, with our car being broken in, and a car window shot out between the two.

I ran to my neighbors to use their phone to call hubs and the cops. The neighbors offered to go in the house with me while we waited for the cops. My home, was trashed. The first time we had gotten robbed, it was very subtle. A few things were moved and the back door was kicked in but otherwise it was still my home. Not this time. Every drawer had been ransacked. Every room thoroughly tossed. All the gas stove burners were on as high as they could go. As if it was enough to violate our space they wanted to burn it down as well.

They didn't take much. My digital camera. My husband's wedding ring (he never, ever wore it), his school backpack, $40 in small change, and my husband's mountain bike. Amazingly, the one drawer they had not riffled through contained my brand new laptop under a pile of sheets.

My sense of security was shattered. I refused to be at home by myself for awhile. I rang the doorbell repeatedly before I would go into the house when I was by myself. We boxed up anything remaining of any value and stored in a friend's garage. We got a giant doberman a couple days after being robbed so I would be less fearful. We took the advice of the cops and let our lawn get messier and threw some kids toys around the yard. We removed all insignia of our college off our cars and pad locked all the gates in and out of our yard. We put our house on the market and ultimately decided to not sell.

Slowly the fear as gone away. It still comes with the darkness of night sometimes or a loud crash in the alley. I would never imagined we would be living in the same home 4 years later. By the grace of God, we have had no more break ins and have been blessed with some wonderful neighbors who keep a watchful eye on our home when we are here and when we are away.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Rice Cereal


Ella Bella turned 5 (!!!) months yesterday. We celebrated by introducing her to food glorious food. Well, rice cereal. I had the video camera and the still shot camera ready to capture her reaction. Umm, there wasn't one. She ate it like she has had cereal every day of her life. It was very anticlimactic. After 3 or 4 bites, she stuck her thumb in her mouth and politely refused any more.



Of course, Moo thought he was missing out on something really delicious and requested some cereal as well. Since I had the video camera out, I recorded his reaction as well. His reaction is quite typical Moo man..... The funny thing is he hated rice cereal as a baby.

video

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

down under

My in-laws have been down under enjoying the majesty of Australia and New Zealand the past couple weeks. They have sent along lots of snapshots of beautiful mountains and beaches and stories of adventure.

Ahem.

We have been having some adventures while they were away too.

1. I cleaned my room! This is no small feat, I am not an orderly person (my mom is on the floor laughing about now) but I actually cleaned my entire room (well, not the closets). Moo helped by laying under my bed and playing with "the lil'le bear in da house."


2. We left town! Ok, we just barely left town and went about 15 miles from our house to a nearby town to support our friends having a car show. We got a little lost and stumbled upon a FREE garage sale and a fantastic local parade. Moo (err, me and hubs) scored big on the candy, better than Halloween! I scored lots of vintage sewing notions, sweaters for felting and a Bumbo play tray at the FREE garage sale. It was unexpected fun! We actually got to see the parade twice as luck would have it, and Moo watched from the roof of our car for round 2!




3. We gave lots of clothes and toys AWAY! We also rediscovered some old toys while we cleaned the garage and Moo had some fun jumping away on old couch cushions. Childhood can be so fun.



4. We are giving cloth diapering a whirl, just on Ella Bella though. I ran across a bunch of Bumgenius 3.o's on clearance at Target and decided to give it a try. I'll let you know how it turns out.... Any advice is GREATLY appreciated. All I know so far is, baby definately has "back" and yes, that diaper does make your butt look big.



5. My lil baby girl is rocking some new tricks. Including, sitting up! And teeth! And getting up before the sun! And rapping..... And taking a BOTTLE! Some freedom for me!

The sitting up blows my mind, 4.5 months! Crazy little nut. She just cut the very top of her first tooth this afternoon!


And falling over, she is really good at falling over.

6. We settled a debate. Her eyes are blue, Papa. Definitely blue.


7. This is definitely my favorite of our recent adventures. My kids have started enjoying each other. Moo loves hugging her and she giggles every time he does. He shares (mostly) toys with her and she adoringly watches his every move. When I can't get her to calm down, his presence can. I am going to enjoy this fleeting stage before the fighting and biting begins.






I bet Australia and New Zealand were amazing! We are so glad you went and so glad you enjoyed yourself. I thought a huge photo update might be a fitting homecoming and belated birthday gift! Happy Birthday Grandma!