Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Things That Make Me Smile

This man.

Because he's awesome.
Because he eats the gross food I order by mistake and gives me his yummy food.
Because he STILL plays cybernations.
Because turkey stuffing and mashed potatoes is his favorite meal.
Because he has gray eyes.
Because he plays with fire...ok that doesn't make me just burns off his eyebrows, but the eyebrow part makes me smile. (smugly)
Because he's compassionate.
Because he wears cool hats.
My smile is big.

This girl.
Because she is my snuggle bug.
Because she has cool crazy hair.
Because she poops styrofoam.
Because she she plays peek a boo with her dresses.
Because she crawls with one leg out.
Because she curls up to nap the minute she touches something soft and fuzzy.
Because she stuffs her face so full I think it will burst sometimes. Chipmunk Annora. My little food vacuum. Although, it's not just food, see above on the styrofoam.
My smile is big.

This girl.
Because she says randomly, "mom...I love you."
Because she wears socks for mittens.
Because she remembers what I tell her and then reminds me that I told her.
Because she wears at least 3 outfits a day.
Because she bakes me a cake almost every day.
Because she says, "I'm a good baker"
Because she goes on dates with Daddy to the dump.
Because she gets sad that the dump has no water slides.
Because she wears cool crowns -princess Madeleine.
My smile is big.
Home makes me smile. Family makes me smile. Chocolate makes me smile. Good friends make me smile. Yarn makes me smile. Fabric makes me smile. Felt makes me smile. Buttons make me smile. Cameras make me smile. Wet dirt makes me smile. Peonies make me smile. Roses make me smile. Deer make me frown. Snow makes me smile. Babies make me smile. TV night makes me smile. Music makes me smile. Christmas villages make me smile. My daughters giggling make me smile. My husband content makes me smile. Bread makes me smile.
There is a lot of smile to be found in this life.
My smile is big.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Art Smock Tutorial or The Tale of the Throwaway Shirt

So I had some mens shirts lying on the floor of our closet because they would not be worn. I thought about sending them to the thrift store...but I would rather find a new use for something. I'm a little short on time these days, but as I put the girls down for their nap and ran to my closet for something, I saw the shirts and picked one up and said... "You will be an art smock today"...and I went to work. Now, this is the way I did it. Doesn't mean you have to do it the same. Especially since I did it so quickly I failed to match the seams and got the cuffs a little off...but, it's an art smock! However, I already have new ideas for cuffs and closure on the back. A fun gift idea when you add some paints! Do I know any crafty kids...hmmm...

First you start with a button up shirt. I had a men's XL in a heavy twill fabric. I like this because the heavyweight fabric will not soak up the water that gets spilled as quickly as some other shirt fabrics.Then I laid my tape measure on the back side of the shirt. I figured cutting it so the body was 13 inches wide was good, so I plopped it in the middle and cut on the left side all the way up to where I thought was a good place to cut over for the arm. I stopped about 2 inches in so I could cut off the cuff.Then I got out a shirt that fit my child and measured out the arm. I cut my shirt based on an 11 inch arm lengthSo, I placed my measuring tape out and placed my cuff along the arm of the shirt and cut to the cuff. I gave myself about a half inch for seam allowance.Next I folded the shirt over in the middle and cut the other side to match. (Note that I did not iron this shirt prior to cutting, thus it turned out a bit, if you have a bit more time I do recommend ironing)Now I have a very skinny and long shirt with no side seamsTurn it over and cut off the collar just below the final seam.I also cut off a tiny triangle portion of the collar area so that the button would be near the top.Now I need to make it a proper length for the little lady. I'm lazy. So instead of hemming I chop out a middle section and sew the bottom back on.

Now it's time to take it to the machine (of which I have no pictures of sorry, but it's sew simple!) Just turn your mangled mens shirt over on itself so right sides are together and sew up the side and arm, now do the other seam on the other side. Sew your side seams on the bottom half and now sew it all together. (Make sure right sides are facing!) Attach the cuffs so that the where the cuff is attached to the old fabric is also your'll want to have right sides facing and raw edges together on this. If you prefer, just zig zag or serge for a simple cuff. For the collar I serged to give a rolled hem. It would look great with bias tape though.

Now it's finished...but wait, it looks like I have leftover shirt, so ...
I made a pocket and added some of Grandma's old yo-yo's because it was cute and fun.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Great Wolf Revisted!

Big thank you to the Smith grandparents for taking us to the Great Wolf Lodge. We all had a lot of fun. Since Madeleine has learned to balance with a life jacket, swimming has been even more fun for her. But she decided that it would be even BETTER if there was nothing between her and the we kept a watchful eye on our water tot as she took off down the kiddie slides. And she didn't drown...maybe, not really.

Annora wasn't as sure about the water as Madeleine was, but on the second day she finally warmed up to it. Well, it might have been an actual warmth issue as the water seemed colder than it had before. Ryan and I both agreed that it was the air temp they had decreased. We remember it being sweltering and enjoying the water as a "cool off". But with cooler air and a cool water temp, Annora wasn't so sure this water thing was for her. But eventually she decided to fall in her sisters footsteps. No water slides for her yet though. Just some chill time in the kiddie pool.

The MagiQuest game was not available to us the last time we went as we were there only a couple weeks after opening. I thought it would be something fun for Madeleine...might have been, but we would have had to steal the wand from Ryan to find out. Maybe we'll have to go just for the day and do the MagiQuest game. Every spare moment Ryan had he was playing. Madeleine DID enjoy the wand and the idea of it, but a scavenger hunt is still a bit over her head. She liked pointing at stuff though. Thank you to Bob's co-worker for providing the wand!

One thing I must say, is that if you go, I recommend the grill restaurant. We tried the buffet before, and it was just fine. A regular buffet. But we found the grill to be very good. Reviews tend to point out the inadaquecy of the restaurants. It's not 4 star, but it's not terrible. I'd rather not have to pay 1.50 for fries...but the food quality for the price I felt was quite fair. Bob and Sue split the rack of ribs and they said it was very tasty. Our dinner was very good...hopefully the other diners weren't upset when our daughter decided it was time to take off her swimming suit. Really, I looked away for just a minute...probably because I was shrieking as to why our other daughter had disappeared from her high chair. (Where we found her under the table...this happened 3 or 4 times! The slipping from the high chair, not the removal of swimsuits)

Trick or Treat

I know it's a week late, but here's what we did for Halloween.

To bad I didn't take any pictures of our spooky dinner. Cause it was awesome. But also delicous, as you can tell by the lack of photography.

And now I'll share with you what Maddie did the other day while she was learning shapes and numbers through cookie baking...which shortly became castle building (which involves a lump of clay or dough piled upon another lump of clay or dough and so on...)

Don't worry, they all came off and I didn't even have to cut her arm off.