Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Weekend finds

With all the rain coming down, a busy week behind us and one coming up, I decided that I had fully earned a few hours out by myself. I quickly called my grandma to see if she wanted to join me and off we went. I was in the mood to find something and knew the thrift store just wouldn't do. So we headed to the nearby antique store. We walked in to find their back room stuffed full of goodies in their (surprise!) annual home and garden event. I nearly went weak-kneed and found my heart pounding trying to take in everything. I told myself to calm down and to stay focused as a list of needs started running through my head... birthdays... my new sewing room... the newly painted front room. I walked slowly at first trying to think of what I needed but quickly became overwhelmed. I decided I couldn't take everything in in one simple pass... so we took four. And then I went back the next day and the next until I finally declared on Monday that I no longer needed to go back. I had looked at every single thing there was to look at and felt happy with my few purchases. I even showed restraint talking myself out of the ones that, you know, I really didn't need. Here's just a few of the things that I did need... for spring ya'll.

A new yellow apron

A wooden box for crayons... the packaged tin just wasn't working out anymore.

A wire basket full of wooden clothes hangers and spools (I think the boys and I can come up with a few creative things for these).

Pillowcases. I've slowly been collecting these vintage pillowcases with embroidery stitching over the past couple of years. Nearly all I've found are in great condition. I don't even need there to be a matching twin which makes it fun to mix and match. This yellow tulip however came with a twin and they are probably my favorite pair so far.

I saw this wooden flower box right away. It sits perfectly on the front porch.

See? All must-haves. I'll show you the rest in the next blog post.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


If we could have lived outside this past week we would have. The sun has been out, not a cloud in the sky. Even the impending forecast of rain showers in the morning doesn't feel so bad after all that sun.

We bought a new chicken coop this past month. Our old one was stationary and while it worked well this past year, we quickly realized that 3 chickens can produce a lot of chicken poop and cover a lot of ground since any spot will do when the need arises. So we decided to sell our stationary coop and buy a movable chicken tractor (picture gallery here). Now the chickens are kept in the chicken tractor all the time where they have a roost, nest boxes, and an open floor with plenty of access to the ground. We move it around the yard every week so they'll get plenty of fresh grass and bugs but we can also control where the poop lands. Now we can run around bare foot outside again!

Ian and Sawyer's favorite thing is to check for eggs inside the nest box. We tend to lose several eggs a week this way since little hands like to drop them in the bucket instead of placing them gently inside but they love gathering them so much that it's worth a few cracked shells.

And Ian's newest discovery... climbing trees.

While the boys were soaking in the sunshine I was inside painting. After 4 days it's nearly done. There's blue paint still inside the windows and I'm planning on taking down the blinds and putting up curtains instead but it's so close to being done. It's like a breath of fresh air to walk in there now. I love the color.

This weekend we'll be putting my sewing room together... yes, a sewing room! I'm so happy that I smile every time I think about it. I'll post pictures when it's done.

Friday, April 17, 2009


"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Things that have been accomplished so far this week:

Signing Ian up for a spring soccer class.
Baking brownies and consuming them while watching American Idol.
1 load of laundry

Things still needing attention:

8 loads of laundry
The front living room that is completely out of order because I thought I was actually going to start painting it last weekend but haven't yet. See?

2 bathrooms that need a scrub down
Grocery shopping
Flowers waiting to be potted
Getting to the fabric store so I can start sewing the things I need to get done by next month (there's a 2nd birthday coming soon!)
Getting outside
Mopping the floors

But it will all have to wait until this one starts feeling better.

When he doesn't feel well he doesn't sleep. So naps are out unless I'm holding and breastfeeding him. And he will only sleep in our bed at night with his head on my shoulder and his feet kicking Jeremy at random times. He doesn't eat either which makes me thankful I'm still nursing him. Doctor says he's fine... just needs to get through the fever. In the meantime... we are all about lounging around and reading books. Thank goodness we have plenty of those.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Eggs, Sun, and Good Friday

I realized a few weeks ago that we didn't need to create our own decorated eggs for Easter because our chickens were doing it for us. It's amazing and beautiful what nature provides outside of the plastic egg carton in the grocery store. Somehow I'm not sure this second one would have made the cut to be shipped and sold... we'll happily take it though!


Our weather this last weekend was beautiful. And while we are back to the rain for a bit it feels like summer really could be here in a couple of months. We took advantage of the beautiful days and spent most of our time outdoors.

The boys got plenty of sun while helping us plant some of the vegetable seeds....

.... following the chickens around the yard...

... and helping each other with their shoes in a big pile of dirt.

Then we came inside for smoothies and homemade muffins. Sawyer has mastered the art of buttering and enjoys it far more than the actually eating.


Tomorrow is Good Friday. Ian and I have had a few bedtime conversations lately about Jesus and what He did for us on that day so many years ago. He listened intently and was so heartbroken when I told him that Jesus had died there, on the cross. And we were both relieved when I could tell him the good news... that Jesus rose again and is alive today. I hope we can make our own easter garden tomorrow. I love a good art visual and since Ian has gardening on the brain, what better representative to illustrate what Good Friday and Easter Sunday are about.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

What a difference a week makes

Ian grew up this past week. It was more like 2 days really. He is now an official underwear-ing member of society. We waited 4 years and 1 month but it only took 2 days. He's officially potty trained!

I was told it could happen like that. I was told it would happen like that if we waited until he was ready. So we waited... and waited... and waited. About once every 6 months I would spend a morning trying to get him to sit on the toilet but he would have none of it. Some days I would ask him and he would refuse politely. And so we waited.

I was perfectly fine waiting until he's ready. It's kind of how we've ended up parenting in every other area too so it seemed natural to just wait it out with him. Plus... the stories I heard from people about the accidents and the hours spent day after day trying to convince them to sit on the toilet was enough to scare me out of rushing him.

I decided last week would be a good time to try again, just to see if he was willing. Within a day I could see this time was different. By the very next day it was no longer me asking him but him telling me that he needed to go. By the 3rd morning, it all clicked, just like that. It's been a week and 1/2 now since we began and he hasn't had an accident since day 2. And not only that but by day 4 he had potty trained himself at night, completely. We don't even need to remind him any more, he does his business by himself and tells us afterward. And the best part? No bribing was needed.

What a difference 4 makes. I look at Sawyer who is nearly 2 and can't imagine trying to make him potty train. The comprehension level is just so different. I imagine, like most kids who start young, that he would eventually get it but it would look quite different than it did with Ian. All the waiting, all the swallowing my pride and knowing that we were doing best by him by waiting until he was ready... all of it... was worth the wait.

Ian seems so much older now... much more independent. He wants to do more and more things on his own now. I know this transition was a big deal in his mind and I can tell that it's made a positive effect on him and how he sees himself.

What a gift and joy he is to us. He and I played some simple card games yesterday while Sawyer took a nap and I love knowing that we'll have many many more afternoons like that together.