Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

We told the kids they could stay up until midnight to ring in the New Year but..... actually we celebrated at 9pm. :o) Hey, it was midnight in New York! He he he. Wonder how long they'll fall for that. Anyway, we had a few friends over, played some games, wore goofy hats, and toasted with plastic yellow cups as we watched the ball drop on CNN.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Holding hands with boys

We ran errands as a family tonight and One, my grown-up five year old, informed me that he didn't want to hold hands anymore. This makes me sad and sentimental but I'm trying to be a good mother. As long as he keeps up and stays close, I told him it was okay. However, there were several times that I instinctually reached for his hand and it disappeared. Like he'd reach to grab my hand and then remember that he was too old now...I was intentionally, purposefully, and methodically brushed off. Not in a rude way, just in a way that says "I'm growing up mom." He's my baby.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Brought to you by the letter T

Today's craft was brought to you by the letter T, for teacher. More specifically, One's kindergarten english teacher. Our neighborhood school has a dual-immersion program where half of their day is taught in english and half of their day is in spanish (so he also has a Spanish teacher). By the time they complete elementary school, the kids are completely bilingual. It's fantastic. This gift is for his english teacher. She is the most wonderful, stereotypically perfect kindergarten teacher. One comes home spouting all sorts of info and quirky little phrases to remember how to write numbers or how to be quiet. That one happens to be my favorite:

zip it
lock it
put it in your pocket

How perfect for a chatty 5 yr old! One very seriously informed me that that was about taking a pretend zipper and key to perform those functions. Silly mom! When I ask him where he learns all this fabulous info, his answer is almost always this teacher, Mrs P. I saw a gorgeous scarf during the holiday season and thought it would be perfect for Mrs P. Also very easy to make and inexpensive...about $3. I bought 6 inches of four coordinating fabrics (I know, I fudged the odd-number rule) and cut them into 2 1/2" and 4 1/2" strips. My pattern was three 2 1/2 inch strips, then one 4 1/2 strip. That design could be divided into enough pieces for THREE SCARVES!!! I also bought 6 inches of burgundy fleece to line it with so it will be extra cozy. Here is the front of it:

Those colors aren't accurate. The white is actually a nice creamy yellow. And the dark fabric isn't nearly so dark. It's actually really pretty and I'm hoping Mrs P will love it and know how much we appreciate her.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Muchas Gracias

Today my craftiness was one of necessity. With Christmas and a new baby, we have much to be thankful for. Many people have been so generous (I probably won't even need to buy size 2 diapers!)and I had a number of thank you cards that needed to be written. Because of my recent commitment to handmade, I have started making my own. This summer, a friend gave Two a beautiful birthday card and then shared the technique with me. I believe it's called Brush Lettering and I used Le Plume II pens. Here are some of my favorites:

Saturday, December 27, 2008

It's getting crafty in here

I have a confession. I didn't end up knitting last night. I got distracted with some of my favorite blogs and then stood out in the below-freezing temps as DaddyMan played with our new chiminea until Three woke up and started crying and that was the end of my evening. Here is my sweet Three:

BUT, I did knit a few more rows today and then I actually got my last Christmas gift completed! (Yes that's two, count them TWO crafts today!) This cute little number is for Cousin F. I don't even know what it's called but I bought it plain brown from Joann's and decoupaged it (inside and out!) with some cute scrapbook paper. Total cost: $5. Cousin F's favorite colors are pink and brown and since she recently moved far away from friends, I thought she'd like a special place to keep pictures or small mementos. I love the beaded handle. And there's even an opening to frame a favorite photo! This gift is like the ultimate multi-tasker!

Friday, December 26, 2008

A knitting dilemma

With most of the Christmas crafts complete (I still have a few more days for extended family gifts and 11 months -wow!- to complete my advent calendar and Three's stocking), I can move on to something else. Tonight I'm working on a baby blanket for a friend made with boucle yarn from Joann's. I knew the yarn was light blue and white, but I was still a little surprised that it would create such obvious striping. It's a cute touch because otherwise this blanket isn't going to be anything fancy -those aren't ruffles, they're smooshed blanket on circular needles!- but you should feeeeel the yarn. It's so soft! Well, I thought I had until mid-February (her due date) to complete it but I just got an invite to a baby shower for her! Surprise! I wasn't expecting a shower for baby number three. I was going more for the super-thoughtful-friend-that-made-you-a-gift-just-because, darn it! So now, not only am I a bad friend for not thinking of the shower myself, now I have less than two weeks to finish this thing! Of course, I could always give her diapers. Something I'm sure she actually needs. And then still give her the blanket later.... We'll see how it goes. I have a little Three of my own that is just the yummiest distraction!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Back away from the scissors

I was rescued from the house today! My parents came to pick me up in their truck and we went on The Great Adventure to Joann's. I imagine it would feel the same if we were four-wheeling through a huge muddy field but it was so great to get out. I picked up my much needed D-rings and this super cute book. Here is a picture of Two's apron. I'm sure I'll eventually add pockets but at least now we can finally use them!

In a last minute crunch to get everything ready for the morning, DaddyMan prepared to wrap the last few presents. He had to gather things from my regular wrapping station (ie-the bed) because Three sleeps in there with us and of course, being 11pm, he was actually sleeping. I was at the sewing machine finishing up the aprons and he very politely asks if he can borrow my scissors. Um, NO! Now, I very vividly remember the conversation we had when I first bought my pair of Fabulous Fabric Scissors, and how they were only for my use and exclusively for fabric.... It was very similar to the conversation my grandmother had with me many many years ago about her fabric scissors, and no, I don't think I'm being even the eentsiest bit selfish. So, he gave me a look that said I must be crazy and then went to get a different pair of scissors without saying a word. Sometimes he is so smart.

Because of the weather, Christmas Eve services were canceled at our church. After my early trip out with the parents, I very much agree that it was necessary, but it made me rather sad as well. You see, Three was supposed to be Baby Jesus tonight. Not in some lame reinactment, but our Pastor always holds a baby during his short message every Christmas Eve to remind us that Jesus, too, came to us as a baby. Two got to be Jesus when she was a newborn. Now of course we all know that Jesus came as a baby, but to see it like that, is so very touching. Definitely more so now that I am a mother. It makes the true meaning of Christmas much more real to me. To hold my little baby and know that, thousands of years ago, another mother held her son, the same way I hold mine.... May it be real for you too.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

When one sled just isn't enough

So the kids have been having so much fun in the snow! Today, DaddyMan got out the sled and you can see what fun it turned into! He is definitely the fun parent and that's okay. Yesterday he was out making snow angels too! That is a sight to see!

I am not nearly so crazy. I took advantage of the kid-free time and finally got some sewing done. I made matching aprons for Two and I, since she has been borrowing One's since the beginning of the Kid Chef program. I would never dress my kids the same, but me and my girl? Don't you know it! Hey, it's only an apron. :o) However, with the snow and all, I can't get out to get the D-rings I desperately need to complete them so they are sitting on a chair. Unfinished. And the worst part is that Two is my Kid Chef tonight. Oops.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Muffin Tin Monday

Another week, another Muffin Tin Monday! The kids love it and argue about who will be my Kid Chef that night. Will they still be fighting for dinner-cooking rights when they're teenagers? We have to get creative to fill up all those muffin tin deconstructing spaghetti into noodles, sauce, and meatballs. There's three tins filled just like that! Who knew it was so fun to actually dip your noodles into the sauce? Or that carrots apparently also taste good dipped in spaghetti sauce? As long as they make it into little tummies, who cares?! Here's One with tonight's dinner: peas, carrots, garlic bread, meatballs, spaghetti sauce, and curly-Q noodles. YUM!

On to my Baby Jesus adventure story: I found Two wandering through the house with a cup of water. I wasn't sure what was going on, but like any good mother, I told her to take the cup back to the kitchen without asking her what she was doing. Oh, those wonderful parenting moments. Later, I'm in the living room and I see Baby Jesus in front of the fireplace with some strange looking white stuff, which I soon discover to be wet toilet paper!

Me: "Two? We're you giving Baby Jesus a bath?"
Two: "Uh huh"
Me: "With toilet paper?"
Two: "Yes."

Fortunately for Two, I thought that was one of the sweetest things I had ever seen and it very much reminded me of the woman who washed Jesus' feet. What an amazing thing to be reminded of, especially through the innocence of my sweet three year old.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

As if I needed one more thing to do....

Welcome to my first blog! I have recently become addicted to crafty mom blogs. Unfortunately they waste as much of my time as Facebook does but it is oh-so-much fun and I get so many ideas! I love it! My craft to-do list is getting longer, my commitment to handmade is getting stronger (and more attainable)....I am so inspired. Unfortunately my house is not getting any cleaner and the circles under my eyes are not getting any smaller, but, with my own blog, I'll at least be accomplishing something and hopefully be able to backtrack one day and remember how much fun I was having during my best attempt to be a crafty, loving, super mom.

We woke up this morning to no power and a house temp of 58 degrees! Eight inches of snow topped with a quarter inch of ice meant an entire week's early start to Christmas Break for the kids and what little craft time I had went straight out the window! Not a great situation considering I have about five more projects (read: GIFTS!) to complete before Christmas! Oh no! Fortunately, the kids are young enough that I can surprisingly craft their gifts right in front of them! Amazing! They definitely get that from the DaddyMan.

Speaking of him, he updated our bathroom today! Brought it completely out of the 70's. I'll try to post some pictures soon. It really makes a huge difference. Now, I'll admit he was reluctant to update the bathroom for my Christmas gift. His version: he was going to have to update it no matter what (true) so it wouldn't really count as a gift (false, I asked for a new bathroom). But, after explaining to him the fantastic two-for-one opportunity -bathroom gets updated AND it doubles as a gift- and considering the above mentioned snow (read: lack of last minute shopping opportunity) he was convinced! I love my bathroom! Now I can pee happier. :o)

Now if I had posted yesterday, my first post would have been something like this: "Take Baby Jesus out of your pants!" I have wanted the Willow Tree Nativity for several years now. I told DaddyMan I was finally going to buy it this year but I didn't. Living on one budget, I usually have too many excuses to not spend money on myself so this was a big deal and he wholeheartedly agreed. (He really is amazing. I need to remember that more often.) But, when shopping at my favorite store (Goodwill!), I found an entire kids' nativity set bagged -get this- with an entire cast of Star Wars figurines (for One) and other misc, including a girl and puppy for Two's doll house...all for TWO DOLLARS! I knew I had my new nativity set (and some Christmas gifts too - score!)! I think it's really cute and best of all, I don't have to stress over the kids messing with the nativity. The only rule was that all the pieces had to stay in the living room so they didn't get lost. However, it wasn't long before I found them lounging in the doll house in Two's room and told her she needed to bring them back to the living room. Well, Two is 3 yrs old and it just wouldn't be any fun to use your hands, now would it? Nope! Two unzipped her footed jammies and was cramming Baby Jesus and all the other characters down her jammie pants! Hilarious! They eventually made it into their expected spot, completely unaware of the excitement to come. I'll share that story tomorrow!