Sunday, February 28, 2010

Peanut Butter Lovers, unite!

Come on, don't pretend like you didn't know about it.

March 1, 2010 is
National Peanut Butter Lover's Day

For the love of all things divine, some blessed soul made this a day to celebrate!  Ye-haw!

If you know my family, you know we're serious obsessive nutso fanatical about our PB.  Maybe it's being born in Pennsylvania, home to the greatest chocolate factory in North America, Hershey's (also makers of Reese's).  Maybe it's the Gardner's meltaway egg that makes my heart go pitty-pat every spring.  I don't know.  But I DO know peanut butter.

Apparently we're not the only ones.  I found this site:

Don't even think a store brand or Peter Pan or such will pass, either.  It must be JIF, or Skippy if desperate.  (Like when you shop at Costco and they stop selling JIF and only sell Skippy). 

On Monday my family will gather and get a bellyache consuming America's favorite snack.  Grab a piece of bread, a cracker, or a spoon and get some yourself!


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Spring craft blocks

Ahh, SPRING is coming. I went shopping with my sisters a couple days ago and could not keep my hands off the easter egg stuff.

So cute, no? Home Goods rocks.

I got out my EASTER blocks I made years ago with a friend's family (Hi Desi and Sonja!). 

Well, the back sides are just going unused.

So I thought I'd make them say S-P-R-I-N-G on the reverse side.  They are already painted and sanded; why not?  I found some perky spring paper in my stash and cut white cardstock Cricut letters.

It's very fun!  Now I can use either side.  Cost?  $0 and about 30 min.

And who can resist a sunset like this?  WOW
This was about two hours after I finished the blocks.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Lucky re-do

I had this wreath that I have been using every March for umpteen years now.  So ridiculously old and silly.  Time for an update.

I never glue things on my grapevine wreaths so that I can keep using them over.  I wanted to use the same base here and just do something green (color, not environment - although that fits too) and very simple.

I took it all apart and wound some clearance ribbon around it.  Then I replaced the shimmery shamrock garland stuff.  It just seemed silly to throw that away.

Hmm.  Simple, yes.  Boring?  Also yes.

Used chipboard and paper to add a little signage. 

Not magnificent, but free and updated.


Some things I need to create:

Topiary love at Frilly Details

Easy glass hurricane apothecary jars at Design-aholic

Toddler dishtowel bib at 10 cow chick

Family silhouettes at Simple Musings

Monday, February 22, 2010

Firsts and lasts

warning:  long post

The birthday

Potter had quite the weekend!  His 12th birthday was on Sat.  He is such a fun kid.

He chose a couple close buddies and they played all day.

The conference

The women I get to work with at church are wonderful.  I got to serve with them as we prepared a women's conference for our stake (group of 7 LDS congregations in our town).  We fed ladies physically and spiritually and it was a great day.  I love them.  And yes, we made 150 pincushions to go with our theme: "Your Life as a Quilt - making it beautiful, functional, and an heirloom".  I was very uplifted.

The award

Bugs got our family's one and only award in Science Fair, ever.  He did the whole project with a friend, without parents.  They got third place!  And the best way to keep an apple from browning?  The freezer!

The special day

Those who are of our faith know that turning 12 for a young man is a big deal.  We had our closest family (still a huge group!) with us to support us.  Man, he looks old in that suit!

Closing a chapter

So in the past two days, my first baby turned into a young man, and my last baby was weaned.  No, I didn't plan it to happen on the same day.

Of course I have mixed feelings over being done nursing.  Rosebud was almost ready, I was completely ready.  We had been declining feedings for the last month in preparation for the split.  But this morning as I woke up after our second full 24 hours weaned I felt a sharp pang in my heart.  I am so blessed that I was able to carry and bear and nourish five children with this body I was given.  I am eternally thankful for each experience I have had doing so.  But that unique temporary bond that I had with each child is now over for the final time.  Gosh, I love babies.  I know we are *done*, but that doesn't mean I'm not in mourning a tiny bit.

I feel like I am being yanked back and forth through the rigors of motherhood at an alarming rate. As my kids are growing into new stages I find myself giving slightly less physically to raise them, but three times as much mentally.

Now my kids need me in new ways.  It's exciting but scary.  My older children need me to be more in tune to their feelings and more sensitive to their needs and moods.  I have to look at their face and decode if it was a good day or a bad day, as they don't volunteer the info very often.  My younger children get a different mom than the older two.  I am far busier now, and I'm no longer a mom to just little ones.  I am spread a touch thinner over my increased demands, and yet I owe them the same time and caring as I did the others.  I need to be more efficient in my personal life so that all the stuff (me, kids, marriage, home, church, finances) still gets attention. 

I wish I could remember my mom at this age.  As the oldest of six, I know kids are demanding and all-consuming.  But think about it - you only remember the way your mom parented you as of your teen-hood.  Most of us moms can't remember with our past "kid minds" how mom juggled it all when we and our siblings were all young and taking over her life.  So this is an interesting stage where we get to wade through the waters sort of alone.  Oh, I know we have friends and peers to bounce ideas off of, and share our struggles with.  But we need to largely figure this puzzle out for US and OUR family.  It's kind of a neat adventure.

As this chapter closes I am trying to embrace the new-and-constantly-improving family I was asked to supervise.  They might not all need me to hold their hands to cross the street anymore but I pray I can still be there at every turn in the road and keep them safe and out of the traffic of the world when they need me to.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Track break fun

This last off track break was truly the best I can remember. We had a ton of fun together. Most of it was the everyday regular family playing. But one day we actually went and paid to have fun!

Here are some pics to illustrate.

Yes - arcades, roller blades, scooters, cotton candy, sweaty boys. 

It was a blast.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Prime time

Thank you, Vancouver.

I don't get to watch much tv.  Most (all?) of the shows I catch are between 9 and 11 pm. 

Life is too busy and with kids around, frankly I am embarrassed to have the tube on while they are home.  Yes, it's that bad.  Even the news is very scary to a four year old.  So during daylight our tv is on PBS or off.

We love to watch family shows, there just aren't many on.  We used to watch Deal or No Deal.  Then they moved that to during school hours.  Then we watched American Idol.  But too many mom-cringe moments on there and I just can't explain away the piercings and men in bikinis anymore. 

But the Olympics - that is a different story.  We love watching!  I am so thankful for non-smut on at night.  It can be on in the background behind the homework and science fair prep.  When there's a big race we can sit and watch together and root and cheer and learn about the athletes.  I can even watch it late into the night when the kids are in bed.

Love Love Love Olympic time.  Wholesome time.  Prime {family} time.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Strider works for an amazing school. Each student memorizes the builders poem below and they recite it weekly and any time they gather together. Their theme for everything is being a BUILDER.

Yesterday was the annual Builders Assemby; they award one elementary teacher and one junior high teacher who have shown themselves to be exceptional builders. Strider was awarded the Jr High Faculty Builder Of The Year. It was an emotional moment. I am so pleased to have shared it with him and I know first hand all the love he has for these special students. He works so hard to give them the very best he has to offer.

Read the poem. Are you a builder?