Monday, April 25, 2016

Unicorn 6th Birthday

Our girlie turned 6 last week. Kind of hard to believe, if you ask me.

She's such a delight.

Her imagination is still alive and well; pretending to be a tiger, a mer-girl (versus a mermaid...apparently mermaids are the moms), a fairy, or a unicorn at any given moment of any day.

And unicorns have been on her mind big time. So it seemed fitting to have a unicorn themed birthday party. I wasn't going overboard though, and kept things really simple. 

I think this has been the first year it's been comfortably warm enough outside for an outdoor party, and let me tell you, it was so nice. Outdoor parties are the way to go. Preferably at a park with a playground.

Naked cakes have a slightly funny name, but they are very simple and I love that. Especially since I'm not much of a cake decorator. I mean, how in the world do you get rid of all those little crumbs when trying to ice a cake? 

Cake and fruit were the only things on our menu, and I loved how easy that was. Just the basics.

 Little cousins are such fun to have at birthday parties.

These two. Make my heart so happy. 

Monday, April 18, 2016


Look who learned to ride her pedal bike:

She has had this bike since her 3rd birthday, but we really should have gotten a balance bike way back then instead of a pedal one. We delayed however, and only within the last year or so got a balance bike. It was the best purchase ever and Natasha quickly got the hang of coasting and balancing. Now though, she is balancing and pedaling with her "big girl" bike.

Just in time for her 6th birthday this week.

Saturday, March 26, 2016


My goodness, it's been a while since I've posted. I have been a little busy with a couple things in our life...

For one thing, there's a bit of news I've not mentioned here yet and that is...we are expecting!

We just entered the 7th month and it's been such fun to feel our little guy thumping and bumping around. I will really miss that part of pregnancy (it's my favorite part!), but will gladly exchange it for a newborn in my arms. Natasha is beyond excited and can't believe she's really going to be a big sister.

The other big event that has been taking up much more of my time than being pregnant (I mean with that, all I do is live life carrying around a very small person everywhere I go) is, that we bought a house and have moved!

We have lived in many locations in our 8 years of marriage. Even a total of 9 months in other countries. Renting the whole time. But now, we have a place to call our own. It has almost 2 acres of land with a lovely yard for exploration and a garage, which we have missed in these northern snowy winters. Daniel has a nook in the finished basement for his office, which takes the laptop off our dining room table, and gives him a little more space. My sewing room is at one end of the basement as well and doesn't share rooms with the guest bedroom anymore.

We didn't move to gain more space because of our little babe coming though...we had been talking about moving for a while now, and the time simply was right. We told ourselves our previous home wasn't a location we wanted to be for 4 years, and that self-imposed deadline would be up in May. So we kind of had to do something about it. 

I think the thing I love the most is that it's really ours. I can paint and change anything I want and not check in with a landlord first. So, paint I did. First the master bedroom, then the dining room, shown below. The purple in both rooms was simply not me and I'm very pleased with the new "Snowbound" colored walls, thanks to Sherwin Williams and friends and family who helped paint. Fortunately we finished before moving in and I can't say how wonderful that is.

The backyard is beautiful in the foggy mornings and Natasha loves running up and down the hills out front, or learning to skip rope out back. The yard is fantastic. Our previous yard was basically a sandbox with weeds, but this one has real grass and it's so thick it's almost like carpet.

 We have been here almost 3 weeks and are slowly but surely making it ours and creating memories. I will be sharing more of my fun with decorating as we go along.

This is a fun weekend for us since today is my favorite guy's birthday...
(Flashback to this past summer when I shot with film. I really should do this more often. Even a picture a week would be more than what I do now. Hmmm...I'll think about that more.)

And tomorrow, is Easter. I grew up having an Easter basket and going on egg hunts, but all the while knowing the Easter bunny was not the bearer of such gifts nor the real reason for this holiday. I want to instill the same mindset with Natasha, yet I like to have little spring/Easter traditions for her to remember too. We've never done an Easter basket with her, but when I saw demibrooke's idea of Spring Baskets, I thought it was the perfect way to celebrate spring and keep Easter for celebrating Christ. So last Sunday, which happened to be Palm Sunday as well as the first day of spring, Natasha found a little goodie bag at her spot for breakfast. 

She spotted some bathtub crayons in Target the other day, so I knew she'd like those. The paint palette is something I picked up at Hobby Lobby so we won't have to use paper plates for paint projects anymore, and of course, what's a spring goodie bag without a bit of chocolate? Dark, of course. The bag itself was something I refashioned out of a thrifted linen skirt, a couple years ago or so. 

We colored eggs last week for fun as well. For the first time I tried natural dyes with foods. MUCH more time consuming, but fun for a change. Natasha painted a few eggs too. I always buy the cheapest, lousiest quality, white shelled eggs to hard boil and dye since we won't be eating them. 
Yay for 98 cents per dozen at Easter time.

Come this time of year I'm always struck with my inadequacy of God's love and I stand in awe that he did come to earth for me. 
Even while we were yet sinners. In our mess, our unworthiness and even while we were enemies of God, he came for us. Romans 5:6-11 was my focus the other day, and I still can't get it out of my mind. For a good reason too.

William Temple puts it in a simple phrase: 

"My worth is what I am worth to God, 
and that is a marvelous great deal, 
for Christ died for me." 

Saturday, February 6, 2016

A Portrait a Week With Momma




Basically my only "resolution" this year was to have a picture of me with Natasha each week. I thought this was completely achievable, and nothing crazy overwhelming like, "hike the Appalachian trail". (Nothing wrong with doing so, it just isn't happening for me in 2016.) I think it's important to be in the pictures we take rather than just being the invisible photographer all the time. I want Natasha to be able to look back at her childhood and not only remember me being there, but have pictures to prove it. So we either set up the tripod with the remote, or have Daniel take a picture, and it seems to be going pretty well. I may not always share the picture each week, but at least we have the memory captured.

I call it: 
A Portrait a Week With Momma.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

In slow mode



Peaceful, slow, winter days. 
I attempt to be a quilter by day, a knitter by night and a reader when I should be sleeping.

So far I have pieced one very true scrap quilt top out of my slightly old work shirts and am now stuck on the backing. 
The knitting has consisted of one slightly slouchy hat for winter, even though it now looks like spring outside with melting snow and rain right now. I hope I get a few more chances to try it out. 

As for reading, I finished "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up", by Marie Kondo, "Humilty: True Greatness" by C. J. Mahoney and am currently on an old book from a library book sale years ago titled, "Keep the Wagons Moving" by West Lathrop. I loved pioneers and any stories set in the 1800's when I was growing up, and this one certainly fits the "pioneer" category. Why I didn't read it when I was still living at home, I don't know. 

The Polaroid picture above of Natasha, was taken by my brother-in-law, with my sister-in-law's "new" old Polaroid camera. This was the first shot with it, and we weren't even sure it worked, but it does, and how truly fun it is. 

Lace is not normally a textile I decorate with much, but I discovered my Grandma's lace tablecloth in the last un-opened box from when we moved. Hung as a curtain, I love seeing the design with the light coming in from the window. 

What keeps you busy these winter days? Are you dreaming of spring? 

Monday, January 18, 2016

The New Year










Do people blog anymore? I know I'm not very faithful, but I still enjoy posting some pictures and a bit of our lives. It's kind of like online scrapbooking. I thought at one time I would be a fabulous scrapbooker. Now though, it's one of those activities I have easily let go of in favor of different pastimes. I'd rather sew than create detailed pages of our lives and have to store huge albums. But, just in case all the internet goes kaput one day, I do a Shutterfly photo book to have in hard copy. Usually of our travels, but sometimes I get a "regular life" one made too.

January has been nice. Not rushed or crazy with events or holidays. I think it's wonderful not to need to be planning anything in particular and I wake up in the morning with simple things on the to-do list. 
Like: Make bread
Have coffee with a friend. 
Casually tidy Natasha's room. 
Take the tree down (in stages). 
Learn how to properly fold clothes, according to the KonMari method, which I'm reading about in, "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" by Marie Kondō. 
Request new books from the library.
Attempt to make menus.
Dream of cheesecake. on. It's been a good start to 2016 and I look forward to the rest of the year. What have you been doing in these slower days of January? Do you still read blogs? 

Monday, January 4, 2016

Scenes of the Season















Before 2016 is too far in and all the Christmas lights are taken down, I have to sneak a little bit of Christmas onto my blog. It was a fun December. We baked some, I knitted gifts, Natasha folded laundry under the tree, we slept in the living room after watching "White Christmas" for the first time, enjoyed our traditional creme brulee on Christmas Eve and treasured Christmas day with family. 

Now, I look forward to January and the new year and all it has to offer. Which, from the way it looks and the things we've talked of doing, it should be a very fun year. 

Just in case you're wondering, the homemade marshmallows are from Danielle Walker's e-book "Joyful". I've made them a few times now and it is like magic-making your own marshmallows. I highly suggest trying it. They're made with honey too-no granulated white sugar or corn syrup. I make a batch, use some fresh, and then freeze the rest to save for later.