Sunday, December 30, 2007

what a lovely year!!

here is what i was doing in 2007!
January~ i celebrated my 33rd birthday and knitted a little pair of pink shorts that did in fact guarantee a boy baby for me!
March~ nesting!!! (and a little knitting!)
April~ i was blessed by my wonderful friends for my upcoming birth. and, i developed cankles, YIKES!!
May~ we casted my pregnant belly, set up the birthing pool, and eventually welcomed a new baby!! not to be over shadowed by her sweet new baby brother, esme' also turned 4 years old in may!
June~ we added a new playset to our yard and celebrated riley's 13th birthday!
July~ we drove to montana, i cut my hair, and all the while i kept my knitting needles busy!
August~ harper got a big dose of what is like to have a big sister!
September~ remember the fries? *sigh* and tony and i celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary!
October~ boo at the zoo, and riley grew up right in front of my eyes.
November~ niko turned 12, and harper turned 6 months old and is as cute as can be!
December~ we celebrated winter solstice and a handmade christmas.
i am looking forward to the new year and all the exciting changes to come!
peace and love to all!!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

handmade holiday

our handmade holiday was absolutely wonderful! i did buy some of our gifts, especially for riley and niko~ they got cd's and dvd's and everybody including tony got books. but, for the most part, all of our gifts were hand crafted. i was terrible this year about taking pictures of handmade gifts before they left our home! my camera has not been fully cooperative lately so i have not been reaching for it quite as often. here is just a sample of some of our christmas goodies:
i organized a toy swap with some other local mamas. for my part of the swap i made wool s'mores sets~
and little hand warmer pocket creatures we received lots of fun toys from the swap including puppets, dolly diapers, hand painted clothspin dolls, and bath sets. it was so fun and i look forward to swapping with my talented friends every year!
niko and i made these flax seed hot/cold pillows for her teachers. they are folded in half in the photo but they were nice and long and scented with dried lavender from our herb garden. we made a few more for friends.

niko made fleece blankets for harper and esme'. they are so warm and soft! she also made some knitted BSU hats on her knitting loom but we did not get pics of them before they were gifted.

and here is esme's new cape~ she has had it on everyday since christmas. i bought it from a cute little shop on etsy called superfly kidz. i need to get one for harper now!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

celebrating winter!

it was a lovely winter solstice~ it snowed! nice, fluffy, sticky snow that stayed on the ground and plants and trees. it was so pretty! esme', harper and i went to cost plus world market yesterday afternoon to buy wrapping paper and candles. the snow started soon after we got home so we spent the rest of the evening inside eating and watching christmas movies by candlelight. we did slip out briefly right before she went to bed to see the snow up close.
jaya's little kitty paw prints on the fresh snow~
snow covered herb garden~

Saturday, December 22, 2007

happy winter solstice!

Winter Solstice Sunrise 2005, originally uploaded by *Tom*.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

13 random things...

...about me and christmas! this meme was sent to me by e-mail by a non blogging friend and i thought i would add it here. so, here goes!
1. i LOVE surprises! i love planning them for others and i love them for myself! when i was a teenager my dad and step mom bowled once a week and as soon as they were out of the house my brother would snoop around and find all the presents. (good times, huh mike!!) i never wanted to know what i was getting... and i am still that way!
2. i am a real tree only kind of girl!
3. i have a huge sweet tooth! fudge, cookies, candy, peppermint... bring it on!
4. i prefer wrapping paper over gift bags, although this year i stitched up some cute little drawstring fabric bags.
5. i hate holiday shopping but love to give gifts... this may be why i try to give so many handmade christmas presents!
6. i love it when it snows on christmas~ i am talking big, huge, fluffy flakes covering everything with a blanket of white.
7. i love getting christmas cards in the mail. i hang them all up on a card holder that riley made in the 1st grade. i have a really hard time throwing them away after the holidays.
8. we sleep in on christmas morning. even my kids don't get up until like 9!
9. i buy a new christmas cd every year. this year it was stockings by the fire from starbucks. i really want barenaked christmas from the barenaked ladies!
10. i stock up on candy canes every christmas so we can use them to stir our cocoa all year.
11. i buy new ornaments for all the kids and one for tony and i every year.
12. the smell of peppermint reminds me of christmas.
i am going to tag 2 blogging friends~ my friend monique at the frugal farm and my friend jennifer at keepin' real with the scheppers!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

trying to be merry....

i am trying to get into the holiday spirit but it has really been hard this year for several reasons. the big reason is the baby and i have been sick for the last week and a half. every night i go to bed thinking surely i will feel better by morning, but this cold has been lingering. i feel so bad for little harper because i know how awful he must feel.
i am also having a hard time with all the toy recalls we have had recently. it isn't going to affect our holidays since we are having a mostly handmade christmas, but it is still so frustrating. i am also saddened by the fact that people feel they *need* to spend thousands and thousands of dollars on toys and gadgets in order for their kids to have a merry christmas. i have witnessed this personally with a close friend's family and it just makes me crazy!!
so, with the yucky colds and general scroogeness i am battleing christmas has snuck right up on me! is it really next week??!! i visited a blog this morning that had a ticker with the days, hours, minutes and seconds until christmas... YIKES!! tony took esme' to get a christmas tree monday. we usually have one up much earlier than this. it is a pretty little tree! tony said there were very few to choose from.
this is esme's little tree. i bought it for $1.99 last year at the fabric store. she loves it and decorates and re-decorates it daily. this tree has been up since thanksgiving weekend.
we took a trip to the winter garden aglow saturday night to visit santa and his reindeer. the big kids were with their dad for a family christmas party so they did not get to come along with us. this picture came out a little blurry, but it is still cute! we forgot to ask which reindeer this was but esme' thinks it was dasher, the lead reindeer. can you see harper in his carrier leaning out to peek at the reindeer?a cute pic of esme', harper and i.
esme' insisted we pose for a pic in this little stone gazebo. i am so glad she did!
and here is harper and i with santa. where is esme' you ask... she is off to the left hiding behind a pillar and crying, LOUD! she was fine the whole time we were in line and as soon as it was our turn she freaked out. she is a little embarrassed about it now, so we don't talk about it ;)

and a picture with daddy, right after the santa incident! she was still a little upset.
we had a lot of fun and it did help me come out of my holiday slump. today i bought all the ingredients to do some holiday baking! if i can't be cheered up by sugar and chocolate than i am in big trouble!!

wordless wednesday!

a super cute pic and my 100th post of the year!!! yay!!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

darn colds!!

my kids and i have been sick this week. i spent the entire day yesterday with no voice. that's right, a day with 4 kids and NO VOICE! by bedtime i was to the point that if i heard "WHAT?" come out of their mouths one more time i was going to cry... a big, silent, ugly cry.
but we got through the day and i am feeling much better today. the kids seem to be feeling better too. thank goodness for traditional medicinals tea, knitting and the following fabulous package that was dropped off on my door step~

these are mantra socks from maggies organics. they are super soft organic cotton and they are made right here in the USA!
i put this pair on immediately!
this evening we are going to bundle up and go to the winter garden aglow to see santa and his reindeer. we do this as a family every year and the lights are absolutely breath taking. i have already been there once this year with my girl friends for mom's night out and i can't wait to go with my family.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

grandma deana went home...

and left behind one exhausted little girl who fell asleep sitting up while waiting for me to pop popcorn for the last episode of kid nation. she was so cute and sweet sitting there sleeping with her half eaten green apple at her side, but then came the waking up part *sigh* let's just say that 3 fun filled days with grandma had caught up with her and she was, well, let's just say difficult for the rest of the evening! she is feeling a little more like herself today and we can't wait for grandma's next visit!

let the deception begin!!

i finally got a copy of Jessica Seinfeld's cookbook Deceptively Delicious. for those of you who are not familiar it is a cookbook full of recipes for kid's favorite foods~ mac 'n cheese, chicken nuggets, spaghetti~ you get the idea. but here is where the deception comes into play... she hides vegatable and fruit purees into each recipe! a little spinich puree in the spaghetti sauce! butternut squash puree in the mac 'n cheese! this is so sneaky i can hardly stand it!!
i actually tried to buy a copy a couple days after it was released but it was sold out and back ordered at my favorite bookstore. apparently i was not the only mom anxious to give my children's next meal a nutrition boost on the sly.
here are the recipes we are going to try first:
tacos, with vegetable puree in the meat! genius!!

and chocolate cake with, are you ready for this, pureed beets!

i have to admit i am not being completely deceptive as my kids watched Jessica Seinfeld on Oprah right along with me and saw all the big secrets. but, if it looks and tastes like, for example, chocolate cake they don't care how the heck it got that way!!

yay for puree!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

grandma visits!

tony's mom is visiting for a few days from montana and esme' is having so much fun! they have been reading christmas stories and drinking hot chocolate and playing in the snow. they made a sweet little christmas cottage this morning that turned out so cute. but christmas time with grandma is the sweetest thing of all!!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

unexpected lessons

i had a unwanted break from my computer this week due to some internet problems. for three days i was not able to log on. it was very frustrating and all i could think about was my etsy shop that needed to be checked in on and my online friends that were chatting away without me and of course my blog. after the first afternoon i realized what a big part of my day and life the internet is. i decided this was a sign that i have been spending too much time browsing websites and blogs and online forums and neglecting other things around me. i also decided that i would listen to this message and not think about the computer again. this was monday.
tuesday i turned on the tv to watch oprah and the topic of the show was how would you spend one more day? author mitch albom was on the show talking about his book One More Day. i have read a couple of his books in the past and thought that i would have to look for this one the next time i was at the bookstore~ or add it to my christmas wish list! it was the next segment of the show that made a big impact on me. the next guest was the widow of richard carlson, the author of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff. richard died suddenly from a pulmonary embolism at age 45 in 2006. during his 25-year relationship with his wife kris, richard wrote hundreds of love letters to her. one which particularly had special meaning to her was the one he wrote for their 18th anniversary. it was everything he would say in his last hour of life. she turned that special letter into an inspirational book called An Hour to Live, An Hour to Love. here is a small part of that letter:
"If I had an hour to live, I'll tell you who I wouldn't call," Richard wrote. "I wouldn't call my financial planner, my banker or my CPA. I wouldn't be checking my voice mail, my e-mail or my Palm Pilot. … No, if I had an hour to live and I could make one phone call, it would be to my life partner, Kris"
this was so meaningful to me. really, what matters the most at the end of the day? for me it is my family and my loved ones. it is all the little hugs and kisses i recieved throughout the day. it is being a mommy, and a wife, and a friend.
today the internet problem is resolved. instead of pouring over the 100+ e-mails in my inbox i went thrift store shopping with tony and the kids. imagine my excitment when i found a hardback copy of One More Day by mitch albom on the shelf at saver's for just $3.99. i told you, it was a sign...

babywearing at it's coziest!

this is seaweed, a knit baby carrier cover. i used a super soft and warm alapca blend yarn. i can't say this was a particularly fun knit with all that ribbing, but it was quick and easy and it is oh, so cozy! and, i have just enough yarn left over for a hat... or maybe a scarf... ooh, or mittens!!


since i missed wordless wednesday, again, i thought i'd post this cute little picture of harper!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

it is december....

it is cold. it was hard to climb out of my nice, warm bed. i was finally persueded by a fresh pot of coffee and little baby hands poking my eyes and squeezing my nose. our it is nearly 11 o'clock and we are still in our pajamas. today is going to be a good day...