Friday, February 21, 2014

Heart"felt" gifts (hee hee hee)

Years ago, probably, MJL asked me to make him some felt cases for all of the bajillion little percussion instruments that he has.  

He got them for Valentines Day!  I think I made 10 or so.  

Some were from bits of old felted sweaters and some were from some blue felt that I had leftover from something else.

I was worried about how to make them all perfect and lovely and finally I decided to just do it already.  Folding them all asymmetrically gave them a look that I liked and was a unifying feature.  

Pinking shears, buttons from the button jar, and green thread just for fun completed the project.  Anna helped sew on buttons, Katie helped make messes, and Jimmy helped by being a good napper.

Oh, what a lucky Mama am I!  

Doesn't it feel wonderful to get something done that's been kicking around in your head for ages?

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Livin' it up!

Matthew's gone this week, and Katie's been on a tear, so last night once all were in bed I looked forward to a quiet evening.

Just me, the Olympics, and this enormous pile of laundry.

 I kept trying different angles, but there's no way to make it as impressive as it felt in person.

It's like trying to photograph a sunset.  

Go World!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Eric Carle

When I was reading through the picture books last semester, Eric Carle was a nice surprise.  

I knew the famous books, Hungry Caterpillar and Grouchy Ladybug, etc, but I had no idea they were ALL good!  This Animals, Animals has lovely little quotes and tiny poems for each animal.  

These stories are written in a nice, straightforward version, great for those middle readers, I think, who don't want to read a giant chapter book yet, but are ready for more than a simple picture book.  

This one is so cool!  It plays with what your eyes will do who when you look at one color and then at a blank page.  

I recommend reading all of the Eric Carle you can find.  :)

Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine Wreath

I wanted a new Valentines Day wreath because the other one I had was looking bad and took up too much space.  Also I had all of these Spanish conversation hearts that I've used for the past 10 years at school but didn't need anymore.  

Thanks to the glory of a snow day, Anna and I made one!  I just cut a heart out of a piece of cardboard, and we used Elmer's glue to glue the hearts down in a completely random pattern.  Anna was the one who suggested we not try to do a pattern and I think she was right.  It looks great and was super easy.  

We let it dry overnight and sprayed it with a couple of coats of lacquer to keep the buggies away.  

Happy Valentines Day!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Winter List 2013

I completely missed my list this season!  It's halfway over, but better late than never.  These lists really help me to focus my thinking and be realistic about time and projects and priorities.  I need that.

So my Fall List:

1.  Make Christian's Quilt 
2.  MIT 805  Instructional Technology Theory and Practice
3.  Finish Jimmy's baby book.
4.  Make as many Christmas presents as possible, spending as little as possible. 
5.  Work the garden through the end, and winterize.    
6.  Make another postage stamp block.
7.  Finish Jairus' skunk.
8.  Help Anna make some gifts. 
9.  Make Cosette costume and find something for Jimmy.
10.  ENJOY Thanksgiving and Advent.  Slow down, worry less, look around more.  

Not bad.  I wish I had helped Anna make some things.  I really feel that I've got to spend some good time with her.  She gets shuffled to the back too much.  

Winter 2014:

1.  LIBR 859--My practicum.  I could get it done by March, if I hustle, and then I'd have a nice long break again.  I would love to do that.  Not at all done.  But 1/2 done?  It's not bad, just annoying.
2.  Potty Train Katie.  She mostly did this herself.  I feel bad taking credit.  But it's done anyway!  (or kind of-she wants to wear diapers at the moment, but I'm telling myself it's just a strange phase and not to even think about it.  
3.  Make something with Anna.  Snuggle her and talk to her and try not to hurry her so much. Just thinking about this has really helped.  
4.  Get back to my weekly routine.  Yes!  With some sliding here and there, but who cares?  :)
5.  Make those things for MJL.  Done and given and happy all around.
6.  Mending Basket.  (it's toppling full-mending is not my favorite but it should go fast)   I did some mending, but not all of it.  :/
7.  Use nap time to do things that make me happy (or work on my class).  I think mostly yes.  
8.  Valentines Boxes to College Kids.  Hooray!  
9.  Make another postage stamp block.   It's a bit smaller though.  I can't figure out if I just went too fast or if I cut the squares too small.  we'll see what happens with the next one, I guess!
10.  Work on Jairus' skunk.   Poor skunk.  

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Snow Kept on Falling

This book is one of our favorites.  It's just a sweet little story about two kids living with their grandparents and a big snow.  It's one of those inexplicable stories that is lovely and perfect and makes you feel good and snuggly and happy and warm inside.  

I don't remember where it came from, but it's an ancient paperback that is completely falling apart.  I laminated the cover and used my super cool giant librarian stapler to put it back on (again).  

If you see one (or two-because you should get one for yourself) at a thrift store or garage sale would you pick one up for us?  


Friday, February 07, 2014

February Portraits

For this sweet girl's 3rd birthday we took some pictures.  

Sweet big sister Anna 8.75 years

Darling Mr. Jimmy 1.5 years

Beautiful Birthday Girl Katie 3 years.  

Here's another Jimmy.  He's getting ready to say "Ba!"  I think.  

And another Katie.  I think I don't like this one as much because she looks older.  
So big.

We're thankful for 3 wild and crazy fun and challenging years with our Katie girl.  

Here's to many more!

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Opening Ceremony Bingo Sochi 2014!

Friday Night is the Opening Ceremony!

I was nervous, but darling MJL found me a bingo last night and I'm happy to share.

Thanks, Wall Street Journal!

Sochi Opening Ceremony Bingo

Under the picture of the bingo card, on the left, there are links to 4 different cards with the pictures shuffled.

I printed them a bit bigger by using ctrl + shift+ p to open the dialog box, and then choosing preferences, and then effects and then choosing to print at 135% .  Now you don't have to waste ink figuring out how big you can get away with.  :)

Have Fun!

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

"New" Thanksgiving Tablecloth

Ha!  I found these pictures all loaded and ready in my "drafts" folder.  

Look at my new-to-me tablecloth!

I've been looking for a number of years now for a new tablecloth for Thanksgiving.  I just wanted something perfect that I would love forever, that's all.  I found this one on Etsy and decided on a whim to treat myself.  

Look at the funny printed stitching.  It's made of that linen cotton blend that old tablecloths used to be made of that hangs so nicely.  

I got it from Chaps + Rascal who included this lovely note.  I feel like she's a kindred spirit, because there can't be very many people in the world who would be concerned with "truly appreciating" a tablecloth.  But I do!  And I completely understand how she would be happy to send it away to a good home.  

There's Thanksgiving!  Perfect and forever.  Yay!

Monday, February 03, 2014

February Giveaway!

I really loved "catch up month" (I need a synonym for "catch up" that starts with a J...) but I'm equally excited to get back to business in February!  This month gets such a bad rap, but it's a lovely month.  Valentines Day means there's lots of pink everywhere, and Groundhog Day, and Candelmas was on Sunday, and Katie's Birthday is this week!

It's a nice, slow, cold and snuggly time of year.  Would you like to curl up with a magazine?

I really loved the January issue of Real Simple.  You know how most of the time, there are one or two articles that are good and the rest are meh?  I loved EVERYTHING in this issue (except the article about Feng Shui, which I just cannot get into.  And I cannot believe it's still a thing!  I remember reading about it in a magazine like 15 years ago and rolling my eyes at the latest fad.  But still-there it is.  Can anyone change my perspective on it?)

Anyhoo-I loved this issue so much it seems wrong to throw it away.  Comment with one thing you're looking forward to about February (and not a secretly negative thing like "it's one month closer to Spring") and I'll let the birthday girl pick a name and we'll send it to you.  :)

Happy February!