Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Woodland Fairy

Woodland Fairy
Originally uploaded by BambolettaDolls

So...Ella has been going on and on about those "girl" dolls, but I discovered these and think I love these. They are totally handmade by Bamboletta Dolls. They can be custom ordered and they usually come with a full outfit including a handknit sweater. They also make adorable boy dolls- which was why I was first attracted to them. Then Nora discovered the Fairies. Oooohhh a whole new thing to look at. I will need to show Ella.

Meanwhile, I will start preparing my stash of fabric to make Ella some doll clothes for her birthday. I think I have decided to make a nightgown,dress, shirt, pants, shorts, hat and possibly a sling for Ella as well as a pair of matching pants for Ella to wear with the same material as the dolls. Once school is out, I will begin an item a night marathon! I can't wait!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Ten and Seven-year-old's bag

ten-year-old's bag
Originally uploaded by Castanet

seven-year-old's bag
Originally uploaded by Castanet

Just had to share this great flickr....I need to have my kids create thier own bags for our trips. I would love to document thier "neccessities" in the same way! Great idea!

Three Day Fun Fest

What a truly beautiful weekend! It will take some serious muster to go back to school. I am completely ready to be done- so it is all the harder when I actually think about how much work I have to do. But this weekend was really fab. Family & friends made it all the more special! I rode with the kids to farmer's market in the bike trailer.

Now to try the Tag a long. I will attempt to finish a bit of sewing and start to plan my summer projects. Gardening, drinking, steaks, babies, playing in the sand, bike riding, oh and laundry galore. Have I ever mentioned how much I love to hang my laundry to dry outside? It is one of my favorite things. I love seeing all the kids clothes hung up and flapping in the wind. I think it is a criminal act if you don't hang your laundry out (not really!) but it smells so great and it is such a natural and easy thing to do.

The concert with Dan Zane was fun for us all too! Special shout outs to all who arrived early and made it so my kids could see and enjoy the music. Much appreciated! The outdoor venue would have been so much better but we made it our own. I would love to see him again. The kids through it was a great concert. Did I neglect to mention it was FREE! Please donate to Hancher through the University Foundation- this was a fundraiser for the flooded out and missed venue. I am eagerly awaiting to hear what the plans are for this memory filled spot!

Look at my new shirt!
Lars' first concert shirt...just like his daddy! : )

Friday, May 22, 2009

Utility Bike

So the real test will be this summer with my new Chariot. I am excited to take it to Farmer's Market and to the gym and even possibly swim lessons. Wish me luck! I think one of the kids is fine but the two of them will be a challenge!

I just ran across another Urban Utility Bike you can haul kids or other goods around in. They are even working on a locking top. I would love to see this on Ragbrai!
I see vacations and relaxing trips on trails or hauling of gardening goods.

Don't you think this just looks like fun? Be sure to check this company out...
Madsen Cycles Cargo Bikes

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Can it be?

I am hoping by writing about this that I am not jinxing it, but Lars has managed to not wet or soil himself for 4 full days in a row. I think we may have crossed the bridge to potty training. I laugh because there is exactly 10 days of school left! Too funny that he is getting it now. I owe all he credit to Spiderman and his friends- the underpants that is.

I purchased this pack of underwear a month ago to use as an incentive if he did stay dry, and I put them out of his reach in his room.The other night he saw them again and we looked at the package and examined how cool the underwear were. We talked about how he could get them by staying dry and not wetting your pants. Sunday, he stayed dry all day! I was not quite sure what I had done different but I gave him his underwear to wear on Monday and he did not want to get them dirty or change them because the are his cool underwear. In fact he tried pulling down his pants several times to show staff and friends.

The next day, Lars did the same. I was in some kind of disbelief. Then this morning when he got dressed he wanted to tun them around so the big pictures were in front where he could see them My friend, Jess, seemed to think that this made sense to a 3 year old. Bigger is better so why not place the big picture in front. I gave in all for the sake of potty training.

Now my question is , at what point can we consider him trained? He is still wet in the morning from sleeping but he can stay dry at naptime. I need to remember bedtime stuff so he can get through a night....I have talked about a Build a Bear for him once her gives up diapers. In fact I have a box of diapers in the car I need to return (I got Dora on accident)! I am kinda hoping I can return them and get a smaller package.

5-25-09 Update
Seriously, what a great week then he had a horrible day on Friday, but this weekend he has been dry and even used the potty himself! Of course, he acts like it no big deal. Too funny. He got up from lunch and went all by himself. I had to ask him what he did. LOL. He wasn't going to tell me. Potty secret??

He managed to tell us when he had to go #2 twice today and he got there in time too! I think a MAJOR corner has been turned. The build-a-bear is still hanging over his head as his incentive. I think he is really excited about this. It was a big thing to Ella when she got hers so I hope to make it as big a deal as I can.

Cute Ideas

I recently went to a great birthday party and was shown some of the cutest crafts for a birthday girl or guy. I have seen crowns similar on Amanda Soule's blog, but the detachable ladybugs are an idea I love for changing it for different themes or for fun playing! I have seen beautiful triangle flags on Secret Agent Josephine as well...so I hope for some this summer for Lars & Ella. Would anyone else like to place an order???

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

I Heart indygo...

More coming...I just loved these beautiful action shots!

Ella & Lars were lucky enough to have an Aunt & Uncle return to South Africa and come back with a bag full of Indygo items for them to wear and momma to covet. Ella received another beautiful dress and some accessories. Lars has an adorable shirt- which he looks so grown up in! Pictures to come!

Preschool Graduation

Here is our preschool graduate! Ella, age 4, missing one tooth and one loose. She was a rip roaring singing preschooler for one last time. I am finding it hard to believe she will be in kindergarten in a few short months. When did this all happen?

Regardless, last night was Kleinschule's Preschool Graduation ceremony. Getting there was a bit of a chore. She was upset because we were not going out to eat. Then her shoes became an issue. She wanted the sandals and I wanted solver shoes. Finally she decided silver shoes becasue the sandals wer too dirty. I wondered if she was going to wear a robe and she cried because she did not want to cover up her pretty dress from Uncle Brian and Aunt Amy. (We had many compliments BTW!) Her nails were bothering her on the way and she just decided Daddy was weird! It was quite the getting ready but once there she was excited and as proud as could be!

Ella joined her friends and donned her adorable white cap. We seated ourselves in the gym and the children filed in with their partners with a slow walk and graduation music as they were introduced. Ella was mentioned for wanting to learn how to cut in kindergarten. I thought she knew how but perhaps she is hoping that her teacher has more tricks for her poor little lefty brain than her slightly frustrated mother.

Once everyone was on the risers, they sang several preschool classics:

  • The Wheels on the Bus
  • Days of the Week
  • Five Green & Speckled Frogs
  • Rules of the Classroom
  • Down by the Bay

We were very happy that Karin and her daughter Miranda were able to come to see Ella's big event! Following the graduation everyone met in the cafeteria for cookies and juice. Ella had her picture taken with Oliver, a boy from Williamsburg, who seems to love Ella quite a bit. Ella is more jaded of their relationship as she thinks he is a boy and likes ninjas.

Ella was presented with a big kindergarten workbook from Karin which we will definitely work on this summer! The preschool also made a book with items from all year for Ella to keep. It is adorable and sure to make it into her memory box!

Cookies anyone?

Karin & Ella- hugs and weird grins

Ella & Oliver. How cute are they?
I think Ella & Oliver sounds like a clothing line!

Outside the school- Ella & Lars.
Lars figured out after 2 minutes how to really ring the bell! Sigh...

This is a terrible video clip, but a clip of the kids singing , Goodbye preschool, Kindergarten Here We Come!" Just the tail end! Ella is on middle in the top row- you really can't see her in this video.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


Found these from Soule Mama who recommended them from Damestar Baby a beautiful Etsy shop. I will be putting these on my list of many things I want to make this summer. My list also includes:
  • sundresses for Ella
  • perhaps perfect my wrap dress pattern
  • pants- easy pull on for Ella & Lars
  • skirts with trimmed out bottoms
  • another shirt for me
  • finish the one from ages ago I started
  • apron central- mother daughter combos
  • perhaps a beanbag set (might be a fun craft?)
  • pillows
  • more applique..I really am getting better at this!
  • doll clothes set with matching pants for Ella (perhaps for her birthday)
I constantly am seeing beautiful stuff and think "I can do that" but the time factor is real and I am not sure how this will work this summer. We will see, but I want to make a serious effort for time to create for me and time to create for the kids, and other kids will certainly be invited to join in!

I am reading The Creative Family by Amanda Soule (blogger mentioned earlier). I love her blog- check it out as it is in my favorites. This book is inspiring me to find creativity in all we do everyday from walks to car rides to time with your kids. Sneak time to be creative all day long. I have long suspected I am creative, but I am sure now it is all in how you look at things. I want Ella to learn that anything is possibly and anything can turn into creative play, thinking, or creations!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Jumping in the Rain

The other day I was sitting on the porch and Bret cajoled Lars into coming ou tto play in the rain. It did not take long for my little guy long to take the leap into the stream of rainwater running off of my roof. Ella was much more reserved and possibly got one run it. Bret and Lars were drenched in their silliness!

Pardon the sideways video- I turned my camera and I forgot you can't adjust the video on here like you can on the Flip. I need to stick with my Flip!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Blog Wordle

I want to find a way to do this for my tags on my blog. For now I am settling on one from my blog (I think just the last few though). It has lots of cool choices and colors available check our wordle!

Happy Mother's Day Nana...a special post for you

I am pretty sure you will like this pic of your grandson. I think he is pretty cute, but I am very biased. He is rockin his new do!

We love his long hair. He had about 4 inches cut off in the back! But I think he is such a cutie with it short too. This should work well for him this summer. I figure he can grow his "cool" boy haircut for kindergarten which is 2 whole years off! Ages away! The rate his hair grows he will have no problem getting it to be there.

Now if you could talk to your son about the goatee....

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Mom Love

I know Mother's Day is coming soon but I really wanted to get my Mom's list of things I love and am thankful for in my life right now!
  • kids who snuggle with each other & make each other laugh
  • kids & husband who make me laugh
  • coming home on Thursdays to a clean living room (It is the little things!)
  • friends who understand pressures of being a mom
  • friends who remind me I am more than just a mom
  • time to be creative
  • gardening with my family
  • starting a biking goal for the summer
  • upcoming summer fun!
  • enjoying dates with my hubbie
  • planning a family vacation for the summer
Life is good- even though it can be hard!

Applique Project...

I am almost done taking a class called Contemporary School Leadership, which has been a year long class where I have discuss current issues regarding leadership and innovations within the education system. We discuss how rapidly the system in which we work is has changing needs that we honestly are not keeping up with. It is a very eye opening class as well as a challenging and thoughtful experience. I have met many great people as well! I highly recommend this class for anyone who is involved in education. It may possibly be one of the best professional development courses I have ever been through.

We are required to do a final project, our choice. I lamented for some time thinking I would do come kind of movie or slide show....but one day it hit me. I wanted a reminder as to what my learning was at this class. If I did a project then the learning likely would get put away. I instead wanted something I could hang and display as a reminder to me as to what some of the key learnings, phrases or quotes were from my experiences & classes.
So the idea of a quilt/ wall hanging was born. I am pretty sure no one else will do anything quite like this project. I am thrilled with the results too! I recently got my sewing machine back from the shop and I must say all the stitches work great! I particularly love how the apple turned out!

As for the words, I used printable fabric. You run it right through your printer then you can iron it on. I of course, appliqued around the edges to ensure nothing would come up. This turned a bit into a mind of sampler of all my different applique stitches. I really enjoyed this! The biggest frustration for me was making the quilt- as I had never done that before! The front I got done while Lars napped on Friday. It was beautiful weather out and I missed it as I was too engrossed on my project. I will have to see how my presentation of this goes on Thursday!
I think it will look great in my new classroom next year!

Next year I am thinking about taking a class dealing with technology in the classroom! I think I need this class!

Tooth Fairy...finally!

Ella has had a loose tooth now for 2 weeks. She took a nap yesterday and when she showed me her mouth after waking up, I laughed pretty heartily as her loose tooth was hanging down as the rest of her teeth were upright. I informed her that I had to pull it. After some disagreement and protest, I took a picture of it and showed it to her. She giggled after viewing the funny sight then agreed! I easily got ahold of this hanging particle and just pulled it out with a protest or wimper. She was so proud of her new hole in her jawline.

I laughed the rest of the evening as she continued to stick her tongue into the new spot. She was excited at nighttime to put the tooth into the pillow. She also wanted to hang it on the doorknob so the toothfairy could easily get to it. Thanks! I think the pillow wil be helpful on the knob as reminder to do the exchange after bedtime and I also won't have to worry about disturbing her in her sleep!