Friday, June 25, 2010

Flower Picking

Yesterday I had a bout of guilt over not "doing anything" yet with the boys for summer. We haven't taken any special trips or done anything away from home beyond playing at the park. Of course, at this point it was too late in the day to schedule anything, so I decided we would spend the afternoon picking flowers. Moses loved it - I knew he would. Titus HATED it - that wasn't a big surprise either. But he had fun stepping on snails and trying to drink bubble juice while Moses and I gathered and arranged flowers.

It was so sweet to see Moses surrounded by flowers he had picked from the farm, getting his bouquet just right, then coming inside and choosing the perfect spot to put it. It is on his book shelf, up very high so baby brother doesn't try to drink the water out of the vase. We admired it for a bit, took some pictures of it ... then played dinosaurs, during which there was much eating of other animals and other such bloody violence. We are such a well-rounded family. :)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Happy Half Birthday

What - you don't celebrate your half birthday? Well, your real birthday must not be 7 days before Christmas. Perhaps your real birthday is in the summer, and you have two exciting events to look forward to throughout the year: your birthday and Christmas, rather than the two just blending together. Your real birthday party has probably never been rained out or held in the dark even though it is only 4 pm. Your piƱata candy probably hasn't fallen into a puddle of rain water. You have probably never had the Noro Virus during your real birthday party because your party is not held at the peak of flu season. If you had experienced these real birthday woes, you would definitely have started celebrating your half birthday by now.

Just in case you decide to start, I have to tell you that no half birthday celebration is complete without half of a birthday cake and 4 1/2 candles (or however old you are). Oh, and a kite from your Aunt Cindy makes things even better. Just in case you decide to start. :)

Monday, June 21, 2010

That's a good one, second installment

"Mom, this dinner is just breaking my heart right now!"


On Saturday we went to our friend Lindsay's wedding and it was fantastic! First of all, her dress was to die for - it had YELLOW in it (well, probably it would qualify as gold, but whatever color it was, it looked gorgeous)! I wish I had a picture of the back - it was laced down the back corset-style with a wide yellow/gold ribbon. Amazing! He wore red Converse All Stars (very cool) and their wedding favors were jars of home-made salsa. You can't get much better than that. They are such a great couple and we're so happy we got to celebrate their marriage with them.

Of course, the reception was a blast. It doesn't take much to entertain Brett and I, and this went over the top. This was the first wedding reception I've ever been to where they had a cigar area for the men (I'm sure women could have gone too, but none did), complete with boxes of cigars. We danced for hours with all of our friends ... a pretty wonderful evening. Oh, and I didn't even have to buy a dress! I borrowed this fantastic blue number from Lisa, the hottie on the far right in this last picture. Congratulations Lindsay and Gabe!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

One Piece Swim Suits

I have been on a hunt for the perfect one piece for our upcoming trip to Hawaii. It took a bit for me to get this far - I've always been a bikini girl and it's taken a bit of mental work to realize that no matter how in shape I get, after being pregnant with and breastfeeding two children I am probably going to be a one piece gal from now on. *sigh* Now that I've done a bit of research, however, I've realized that there are a lot of really cute one piece options out there. I'm a huge fan of rucheing - it adds a little bit of (ahem) bulk to areas that need it and distracts from other areas I wish had less bulk.

The other day two possible swimsuits arrived in the mail and I locked myself in the room to try them on, telling my husband that I would be a LONG time and that if I came out crying he was to just leave me alone and not ask any questions. However, I was pleasantly surprised by both - NOT ugly, NOT frumpy, actually quite flattering and cute. I am no longer dreading my vacation! How about you - are you a one piecer or a bikini gal? Any good one piece suggestions for me?

From upper left, going clockwise:
Carmen Mark Valvo Retro One Piece
Juicy Couture Ruched One Piece
Kenneth Cole Halter Swim Dress
Natalya Toporova One Piece

Farm View

Just a cute picture of Moses with our neighbor Phil, who graciously mowed our pasture with his tractor after our driving lawnmower broke. Things aren't quite as green up here anymore, but this is our everyday view. I tend to take for granted how nice it is to look out the door and see grass and trees rather than houses.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

First of the harvest:

Our lettuce is in! I've been eating salad every day so that none of it goes to waste. How is your garden doing? Everything else I've planted is a bit behind schedule due to that fact that I've had to replant everything several times. The main culprit this year seems to be snails - I personally killed 12 snails this morning and my boys kill them all day long. We used to pick them up and throw them as far as we could in the opposite direction of the garden, but they were obviously making their way back. Last week I went to water the pumpkin patch and all that was there was dirt covered in shimmery snail tracks. I almost cried. I know the news of snail killing up here on the farm will make some of Moses' more tender-hearted friends sad, but it has to be done.

To be honest, I'm really not a great farm girl at heart. I hate getting my hands dirty and even though I tried really hard, I still don't like those chicks. BUT, I've been reading Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little House" books, which my dad read to me when I was a little girl, and they have been motivating me. Those pioneer women worked SO HARD, and their family's survival depended on them doing their work quickly and well. Of course, that is not the case with us, but reading the books makes watering the garden and fishing poop out of the chickens' water seem a bit less dirty and a little more exciting. Oh, and now I wear my fluorescent pink rubber gloves every time I go outside, too, which makes all the dirt and snail slime and poop more manageable. And the salad is really good, too!

Friday, June 11, 2010


Here are the bibs I finished as a custom order yesterday. I LOVE how they turned out. Too bad Titus will not wear bibs at all any more, because these are still big enough to fit him and it would sure make for less laundry! These are great because they work for little babies just starting to eat solids all the way up to 18 months old - I put one on Titus to show you how they fit.
I'm still working on the labeling for these, which is why there aren't any in the shop. I love making them by special request, though, so if you want any just let me know!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

That's a good one

Quote of the day: "Mom, I have to stop eating this because it is making my nipples hurt."

Monday, June 7, 2010

Let's Talk Shop

I've put another few garlands in the shop. I finally forced myself to cut into the gorgeous yard of Japanese fabric I bought a long time ago for a custom order. This stuff is so silky and beautiful I was tempted to horde it away, but it looked so perfect with the unbleached muslin that I couldn't help myself. There are two of these garlands in the shop, one more to come.

I tried taking some "better" garland pictures this time, but may not have succeeded. I wish I had a well-lit area in my house to show you how adorable these look hung over a window or doorway. Maybe I'll borrow someone else's cute house to take those pictures...

Here is what it looks like hanging on something... not that you would hang this in your back yard on a tree. (On a side note, this Japanese Maple tree grew from a tiny sprout Brett pulled out of his parents' yard. Pretty awesome.) Brett is going out for some "man time" with a buddy tonight, which leaves me with hours of guilt-free sewing time. Hopefully I'll finish up that last garland and have a few cute bibs to show you soon. Happy Monday everybody!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Not crazy yet

Man, I thought those baby chicks and geese would push me over the edge, but it's amazing the difference a week makes. All told, we lost 7 chicks and zero goslings, and I think we're out of the woods. No more wiping feathery bottoms for me - all the survivors can poop independently and know how to find the water and food on their own. Also, the weather is about 20 degrees warmer this week than it was last week, so they are also no longer in danger of freezing to death. The only down side is that they are much less cute and harder to catch. In about another week they will be ugly enough that we won't want to catch them at all. Then we will begin the process of "separating the cockerels from the pullets," which basically means discovering which ones are boys and putting them aside to be eaten. How do you tell the difference? Well, the boys are the ones that attack you. Believe me, once you have been attacked by a rooster you will not feel even a tiny bit of remorse about killing him.

But I am losing track of the main reason for this post. It seems that you, too, can have a chicken of your very own, and keep it inside of your house. Yes, all you non-farmers can have fresh eggs every day, all thanks to a very special new product. I'll let my friend Gail Damerow tell you all about it:

"If you bring a chicken into your house, you'll obviously need a different approach to manure management. Because chickens are difficult to housebreak, reusable plastic-lined chicken diapers have been developed in various sizes, styles, and colors for use with chickens kept as house pets, convalescing from an injury or illness, or being primped for show. An internet keyword search for "chicken diaper" will reveal numerous sources, as well as detailed instructions on how to make your own." (Storey's Guide to Raising Chickens, Damerow, 138)

Wow, that is a huge relief. It is great to know that in case I get tired of changing HUMAN diapers, I can always bring one of those ugly stinky grouchy birds into my home and change ITS diapers as well. I think the only thing worse than having a chicken in the house would be having a chicken wearing a diaper in the house. Seriously. Although, perhaps I have found a new etsy niche ... patchwork chicken diapers, anyone? Let me know, I'm sure I could whip you up a batch in no time. :)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

It feels like summer

The other day while searching the cupboards for dinner inspiration, I happened upon an old bag of wooden skewers. With no time to go to the grocery store, I decided to make shish kebabs (sp?) using whatever I had around. I cut up some chicken and threw it in a "marinade" (it was my first attempt at making my own marinade - something like vinegar, sugar, spices, and a bit of oil). When that was ready, I put it on the sticks along with some mushrooms, red onion, pieces of a lone sausage left over from a previous dinner, salted zucchini, and slices of mango. Brett was kind enough to bbq them for me and they turned out really great! We ate them with rice and soy sauce. Yum. I recommend this dinner for sure - simple, fast, versatile, and definitely a summery meal.