Tuesday, June 30, 2009

For Sale...

For Sale... So L chopped off bits of cotton yarn, hacking away with a purpose that eluded me until he announced that they were for my shop. "We can put them in the store, to make money, like your dolly."I'm amazed by how much kids just want to be a part of living. Before I had my own I often wondered what really, truly poor children around the world did all day. But since I've turned off the TV, I've recognized how truly amazing just living can be. They find wonder in washing the dishes with me, watering the garden, putting stepping stones by the compost (and running from the swarm of mosquitos those stones disturbed), cooking, pretending to cook, dressing stuffed animals in their clothes and building a bed for them. In the raggedy, totally and completely dead "flower" of a weed collected for me and for Daddy, and the pride when Mama presents Daddy with said flower later, as they watch.

It leaves me thinking of Moses, of that quiet four decades he spent in a foreign land, living as a shepherd and raising his family under the mountain of God. Nobody talks much about that phase of his life, but I have a feeling that Moses cherishes those years and those stories more than his forty years of plague and parting seas and whining Israelites. I think he'll surprise a great many people when they ask him to tell them about the glory days and Moses launches into an epic tale of how one of his boys drove his dear wife into fits over potty training, or the way one of his toddlers beamed with pride every single time they toddle-ran.

Jesus said that kids were tremendously, terribly important to Him, and I'm really grateful He's loaned me a couple of them!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Green Eggs & Sally Jane

Believe it or not, Mr. Picky Pants (L) was the one to request Green Eggs for breakfast. I dumped in some blended peas for the color, and they gobbled them up. M is not picky, so this was not a surprise on his part.
But it was such a big deal for L, that I got out the camera.
And here is Sally Jane. M calls her Sally, because he's a Cars fan, and L calls her Jane, cause he's a fan of Tarzan. She's my test dolly. I've been doing a bit of work to get her just right for my shop. I'm keeping Sally Jane to test out clothes and see if she's durable or not.
Run away...

And here's L hard at work. He has no intentions of quitting our homeschool work just because it's summer.
And my finished Sally Jane. I will be working on some more for the shop...
By the way, L has decided that Sally Jane is married to Pirate Jack.

Friday, June 26, 2009

"Can we...?"

Do you know what I hear a ton around here (like ten times more since we turned off the TV)? L is always saying, "Can we....?" You fill in the blank. Build a bridge, make a snail house, construct a bow and arrow... etc. Here is the snail house... There is a tiny door on the front, but we left the back open so it could be played with.

Some things he figures himself, but most of his requests force me to get in some good creative thinking... And M is watching. Trying. Growing.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Scarecrow -or- Not Nearly So Bad As The Other Time.

First - the Scarecrow. Isn't he fun? He blows in the breeze pretty good, and the tin can & metal knitting needle feet make some fun, anti-small critter noise.
And for the "Not Nearly So Bad As The Other Time." If you are easily grossed out, now would be a good time for you to go read some other blog.... I woke up the other morning with M calling me, cheering that he had poop that needed to go in the potty (we have been emptying his poopy pants into the toilet, so he'll get the idea where that stuff is supposed to go). So I go cheerily in to change him, and then notice that he is clutching something in his hand, and his diaper is not on his booty. Ahem.
"Skish, poop... Mama, poop potty?"
Yes, dear reader, that translates to: "Look, mother dearest, the poop doth squish. Shall we deposit it into the proper receptical?"
I took a deep breath. I did not freak, but calmly explained that we do not touch poop, and as an example I calmly picked it up from his hand with a wipe, and then cleaned him up and we flushed the poo down. He has not repeated the incident.
Now, before you go thinking I'm some kind of calm-queen, super mama, I would like to point out what my dear friend Lindsay likes to remind me of: compared to me, most parents potty function horror stories are an absolute cake-walk. So, someday, as you walk in and find your kid holding something gross, or filling their tea set with toilet water, you just repeat these four little words and know that it could totally be worse:
"Painting with poop. Repeatedly."
That's right. 'Nuff said.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

My New Puppy

My new puppy everyone!
L spent the morning down on doggie level, barking, woofing, and doing tricks. M copied him for about, oh, 4 minutes, and then went on with life, but L played at it all morning! At rest time I had to tell him I wanted my L back for a little while when he woke up.
Maybe that explains the flea I found on him this afternoon...

Ha, ha, ha. Seriously, Chewie needs new flea meds. I think the outdoor ones are finally hatching, and I will NOT have him bringing them in! I am itching all over just thinking about it.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Now, it's not everyday, but L really gets into an artistic mood sometimes. Here are some of his recent pictures. I scanned them into the computer and printed off a smaller version of each, so that I can embroider a copy sometime. You know, when I don't have anything to do. Ha ha.

Love the beard, don't you?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Creative Bits

"I'm flat!" Apparently this is what a cowboy hollers when he and his horse dive for cover from the planes flying overhead. M and I both found this very funny, and soon they were both shouting and throwing themselves on the deck.

Meanwhile, I was sitting just by the door at my "Sheen," as M calls it, putting together another little dress for my shop. M is really, really, really starting to put a ton of words together, and I am amazed by the stuff he says. He can even tell you what color truck his Daddy drives!

Oh, and here's a quick shot of the summer dress I made for myself! The pattern was free - I used this one, but couldn't get it to print so I just sketched it out and guessed at the sizes. The material was 60% off at JoAnn's, plus I used my coupon for the thread! I felt very thrifty indeed, putting together my own clothing! Plus it's really comfy and it has pockets!

I wore my new dress up to Camp to visit Daddy, and got a bunch of compliments. Probably because the gals aren't used to seeing me in a dress. Honestly, unless you count Rebecca's wedding, I don't remember the last time I wore one... Growing up I thought they were something your mother made you wear to church on Sundays, but recently I've decided they can be for regular, get-a-little-dirt-on-you living too, provided you find the right kind. And I like the easy-going, just throw it on and go-ness of it.

I don't know. Maybe I'm just rebelling against the current femi-nazi culture...

Friday, June 19, 2009

Brighter Afternoon

Rough morning. Just one of those days. So I had a little, ahem, chat with L. When I went to get him and his brother up from rest time I was feeling better already, but this really sealed the deal. L jumped out and cried, "Supwise Mommy! I kweened my room - all by myself!" And it is very clean indeed. It really was very thoughtful, as just yesterday I was saying we needed to clean his room up.
So my afternoon, just like the skies above, was much brighter than my morning. M was pretending the cooler was a horse, so I pulled out the old wooden one, which brought out the cowboy in both of them. Big brother actually got him into that get-up, and while it didn't last long, it was really cute, and some excellent sharing too!

Well, I'm going to get to work on one of my maps for the shop, as all three have now sold out - have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, June 18, 2009


So we piled up the sleeping bags, the cooler, the tent, and a small tub of camping gear, and went on our first camping trip with the boys. Daddy said we could stay on the grounds at his camp so that he could come and go for some of the fun! We cooked dinner on the fire, and caught a bunch of frogs. Then Daddy went back to work, so we hiked to the playground and played with a bunch of fun-loving counselors! They did a great job of wearing the boys out! Then we hiked back to our camp (we used one of the archery ranges:) and built the fire back up (despite all the wet wood, yay, Mama!). Me and the boys snuggled, and as requested, I told stories from "God's Word Book," as well as our favorite made-up character - Methusalah Mouse, who was hiking up a mountain seeking adventure.
We had a GREAT time camping!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Summer Is Here!

I have decided that summer is here, even if it's not hot every day (or even warm for that matter)! My kids don't care - being kids they have that play-in-the-water-till-your-lips-turn-blue thing going on. L has been given the job of filling up the kiddie pool (we'll break out the bigger one when the heat really kicks in), and I pointed the slide into it. That was quite a hit!
M at the sandbox...

King of the camera! Remember when he was hiding from it?

After all that awesome, energy-burning fun, this is where they ended up for the last bit of their day..

Monday, June 15, 2009

Pirate Jack - In the Shop!

The Pirate Jacks are finished! The sun came out today, so I was able to get some great pics of them. These pirates are listed and ready to ship out!
I made four, but one of them became a permanent member of our crew, and will be sailing with us from now on!
Any locals want a Pirate Jack, but don't want to pay shipping? Just convo me over at Etsy. I can re-list him as a special order (without the shipping) and we can arrange a pick-up!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


There are so many wonderful things that add up to happiness. Here are some of mine! L getting ready to draw just like Harold in Harold and the Purple Crayon. What thrills me about this, is that it was his idea to put up paper and draw like Harold. He has a lot of very creative ideas!

Some simple food made from felt in my stash created a ton of happiness around here. Two slices of bread, an egg, pancakes with butter and a tea bag, just the stuff we could throw together with the colors I had. M has started cooking the stuff in his little pans - and L is having a blast making all manor of sandwiches for us to eat (they're all oven baked, of course)!
And here's our more manly race car aprons. M loves the pocket for B (his bitty blanket). L was thrilled with his too, until the second I took the picture, when he tried to look all serious. If you look closely, you can see the grin he's attempting to smother...
I didn't have a pattern for these, I just measured how wide M's chest is and cut it freehand, leaving a bit of room for them to grow into. Figure these'll be great for both art and cooking!

And here's a little more joy - L wanted to take some pictures this morning. The majority of them were of me and M, and it's cool to be such a big deal to him! M went to the store with Daddy for a little while, so we went outside to play, and L decided that things are so much more fun with M. What Mama wouldn't be happy about her boys really loving - and liking - each other?!?
The boys are still TV free, and I can't begin to explain how free I feel! They play more, laugh more, think more, create more, and have better attitudes to top it all off! Getting rid of something that seemed so impossible to live without turned out to be one of the best decisions I've made in a long time. I'm not banning TV forever, but it has certainly been relegated to the "special occasion" category.

"I will set no worthless thing before my eyes." - Psalm 101:3

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy

So here's a few new Pirate Jacks I am working on for my shop! I drew my own little patterns, and here is the first of four. Jack has permanently attached baggies and a bandana, so if he wants to go for a swim, he'll be prepared. After I get the Jacks done, I'll be making them little pirate clothes with some fabric L helped me find.

And TADA! Daddy finished the kitchen he's been building! It's mostly for M, as he's the cook in our family. Stocked with a very small set of pots & pans from Ikea (less is totally more), some measuring cups and some spoons and forks, the boys had a blast with this thing! They played with it off and on all day! The knobs turn, there's a drawer, a sink, a burner, and an oven.

For now the boys are happy to pretend about everything, but I plan on making some kid-sized oven mitts for them to use. Plastic food drives me nuts - I can't stand how gross it starts to look, the minute it comes out of the box, well, it just rots somehow! So we'll be avoiding that!

The solution, thankfully, is to be found over at Etsy here, here, and here. I can make this stuff myself, and will probably work on some of the pieces here and there, but this kind of stuff is really, really time-consuming. Thankfully, as far as toy food goes, a little goes a long way! And we can always ask for some at Christmas time, right?

Aren't we really, really blessed to have such a talented Daddy who made time to build this despite the crazy camp season!?! Love, love, love you honey!