Monday, June 29, 2009

Saturday Was the Perfect Day For a Birthday

We had some SERIOUSLY gorgeous weather on Saturday. IDEAL weather, which doesn't seem to happen much around here. The kind of day you want to just live outside and then bottle it up to pull out on one of those not-so-ideal days. Our little friend Brandon was lucky enough to have his 2nd birthday party on that sweet day, so it was fun to join in.

I made him a little library (or whatever) tote, lined with dinosaur fabric.

And, because he is a 2 year old boy, we deposited something with wheels inside.

Brandon's mom was kind enough to make a cake with red frosting and then let all the kids dig in and share! Actually, I tease, because all three of mine managed to stay miraculously clean.

Lots of happy revelry and tired kiddos at the end of the evening.

But the sun stayed with us right to the very end.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Small Town

We just got back from a lovely few days with my parents. Can I just say that I love going home? I had a conversation with my SIL, Amy (also from the country) about people we know that no longer want anything to do with their small town roots. It's sad really, because no matter where I move in my life, I started here. And I think you'd have to be crazy to deny this stuff.

The local Wednesday auction and market:

Open spaces:

Dirt on your face and neck:

A grandpa that makes you a fire "just because" and a place to do it in. Hot dogs and 'smores roasted on the embers:

Somehow, I think it even made my kids nicer to each other:

Or maybe that was just the blueberries from the market:

See that red post? It used to host one end of my grandma's laundry line. The other was hitched right to her trailer on my parents' property. I used to play around that pole as a child... pretending it was the lamp post in Narnia. The boys don't know that book, YET, but somehow that red pole still had a magical pull. This trip, Grandpa cleared out some under the bottom of that pine to make them a play space. Maybe next trip we'll clean out some more of the weeds and make it even more interesting. Meg, what is it about playing under the pines? You and I? Your kids? Now mine? Never mind the sap, dirt and mosquitos.... totally worth it.

Know what else was worth it? Watching my boys learn to climb said pine, even if it did make me nervous. You know what? They came down when I said I was scared for them, but even at my most afraid I was still cheering them on in my heart. That, boys, is how you fly. That is how you test your own limits and nerve. I know that climbing a tree and coming down covered in scrapes and sap is a sort of rite of passage, a test of independence and skill. I know because I did it. This is the sort of thing you SHOULD take with you from being in the country.

And you should never turn your back on it, no matter how far you move from it. Because it's beautiful and it's part of your heritage.

I'd let that shape me any day of the week.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Father's Day Bits

You gotta love a man that makes his own cake for Father's Day. (Slightly modified from this recipe).

And has the foresight to make it one day ahead, so we can eat it



And I TOLD YOU that I found the best Father's Day present EVER. It really is fun for all!

We all love you, Michael! Thank you for all your love and hard work.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Before This Week Began

At Grandma and Grandpa's:

Thanks everyone who left a comment or sent a note. We are doing ok. Mike is back from his trip this afternoon and one foot in front of the other seems to be doing the trick.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Don't Laugh-I Am NOT Kidding

We are experiencing some technical difficulties. By which, I mean that TECHNICALLY it is going to be hard for me to post for at least a week. I am STILL dealing with some sort of GI craziness with the kids and, on top of it, another sort of medicalish issue has arisen (kids, if you are reading this in the future, feel free to ask me about it. Trust me, I am not going to forget this week). So, I am taking a little break here and hopefully, when I am back, we will all be a little healthier, a little less exhausted and a little more positive. It's what I get, you know, for claiming to be dramatic: drama.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Drama Queen

Thanks for encouraging me to stay. I wouldn't have stopped posting anyway, but it was nice to know I'd be missed. I tend to be a little impulsive at times and just look for a quick fix for my life-is-overwhelmingness. Maybe if I start exercising? Maybe if I start only showering every three days? Maybe if I stop blogging? That sort of thing. I am just not an even-keeled sort of a gal.

The trouble is that I might go along swimmingly for quite some time just DOING as I ought to do. Maybe even as I ought NOT to do. But then I begin THINKING about what I am doing, and I am lost. It is as if my own mind wishes to to snowball my thoughts into the world's biggest mountain from a mole hill and then push me right off the edge. Think I'm being dramatic? Probably am. I have a tendency for that as well. ;-)

LIttle Pick Me Up

Well, I have to admit I have been spending this day (and a few previous) just feeling rather dumpy and unmotivated and sorry- for- myself-ish. And then don't I get TWO lovely packages in the mail today? You may recognize this little stamp from Melissa's craft disorder.

Oh, thank you Little Pink House!

And then this gem from Joanie at Nini Makes. I won a little giveaway not too long ago and here is my prize! It came rather quickly for crossing the ocean with all its gorgeous stamps: thank you Royal Mail!

Look how beautifully she packaged everything up! Not just ONE package to open, but a sweet little pile of them. I ALMOST waited and spread them out...

But I think I've mentioned before that patience is not a natural quality of mine ;-)

Thank you ladies. You are both so thoughtful and inspiring. And just when I was getting tempted to give up blogging too....


No worries, today. Not a one, except that I took Tate in to be tested for strep this morning as he was up in the night vomiting and Cal had the same thing with his strep throat. Negative. Instead, poor doll is having YET ANOTHER round of a GI virus. What is this? #4???? I don't know about him, but I'm depressed.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Money For Nothing

A couple of weeks ago, the boys had a jam session at a good friend's "man room." They just loved it, of course. It's good to know musical people. We just may have to request some lessons at some point. After all, this mama has dreams of these guys wanting to learn acoustic guitar someday. I can see us all Kumbaya-ing around the campfire now.

At this stage though, I have to say the drums have a BIG pull.

Well, if it's drums, it's drums. But rock on little dudes.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Enough Already

Well. We are now the proud hosts of strep throat. Calvin is the diagnosed and I am not holding my breath to see if this will creep its way around my cup sharing, Cheerio thieving, toothbrush sneaking children. Yeesh, it's almost summer, could we be done with the nasty illnesses please?

And I still need a nap.

Friday, June 5, 2009

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Our little veggies are coming along nicely.

But there is SO MUCH to be done outside right now, it makes my head spin. Should I disassemble the front garden and fill in the new ones? Yes, this IS my front lawn at the moment. Lovely, isn't it?

Should I attack the hideous, destructive overgrowth EVERYWHERE I turn?

Nah. Let's just create some more stuff to take care of! So, I am planning a flower garden out my kitchen window around all the birdies.

And Farmer Tate has requested his OWN garden with sunflowers and veggies to use for pasta salad.

A happy reuse of some edging stones taken out of the front.

And, even though this didn't last very long, you gotta give the boy credit. He jumped right in.

Oh, and today, jumped even farther. Tate is the first one to be impulsive and self reliant. So, while I made him a lunch, he went out and planted some tomato seeds he found in the hutch drawer. See that nice little spot he managed to clear of grass? Yup, just dumped 'em all right there. His response when I tried to explain that that wasn't really the BEST way to plant his tomatoes? "But what did I do wrong? I WATERED them." Oh, bless his heart. We went ahead and cleared out the rest of the grass and I am just going to pretend that he didn't do it. We'll plant what we want and see what happens.

And, speaking of self-reliant.... I tackled this overgrown lilac/other kinds of bushes/MORE aggressive maples/newly discovered raspberry bushes corner this afternoon.

And this is what I just came in to:

Tate and Ellerie made their own sandwiches. Elle was CLINGING to the jar of jam that I was forced to pry from her smeary hands while she screamed bloody murder. I wouldn't even have the heart to show you what the jars looked like. I mostly cleaned them up, but for any of you that have aversions to the PB mixing up with the jam, it would have been too much.

I could seriously use a nap now. And a nice COLD glass of lemonade or a Pepsi, neither of which are anywhere in my house. I wonder if I could sneak 20 minutes while the kids watch Arthur. I am REALLY dreading cleaning up that kitchen.

Yeah. Definitely a catnap first.

Note to self: Do not ever SAY you are going to take a nap, because it will surely not happen.