Monday, December 29, 2008

Ying and Yang, Yes or No, What to do?

Our sweet little pup, Baxter (age 7 months), who is a Staffordshire Bull Terrier (let me emphasize the word terrier in this sentence) is giving us fits and me a stomach ache. I feel like I am living with a bipolar dog. One minute he is as sweet as can be and then next you are cursing that dog to damnation! I dropped him off today at the breeder who we got him from and he is happily playing with his litter-mate, while the breeders evaluate him and give us their professional opinion. We L-O-V-E this dog, so please do not think we don't, but I am afraid that he might be a bit much with two little ones and I mean little, one and two, running/crawling around here. heart is heavy and my feet are cold (he likes to snuggle under the blankets) and my stomach hurts from the indecision of it all. We will all sleep on it tonight and talk tomorrow.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas

Merry Belated Christmas my fellow bloggers!

I hope everyone has had a peaceful, joyful, family filled holiday. Wishing everyone all the best and a prosperous New Year!

With much gratitude,

Sunday, December 21, 2008

A whole slew of things

We have been making our Christmas crafts and present toppers the last few days and the candy cane sleds have been Reef's favorite to make so far. He has a slight love affair with the chocolate peppermint flavored candy cane's and I can't really say that I blame him. They are heavenly.
The first picture is showing you the needed supplies to make these cute sleds. I used matting paper I found on sale at Michael's craft store, but any paper you have lying around the house will work just fine. You could even use mini candy canes with mini chocolate bars.

After all of our crafting we all needed a break. A siesta for the pup and some down time for the kiddos.

Our little kissing bandit in action.

A festive wine stopper. Holiday parties are a favorite of mine. Just one of the many things I am loving right now.

Ginger cookies for my husband and the best ones we have ever tasted. You must try this recipe if you like ginger cookies.

Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas! Did you know that Santa needs to take his reindeer out before Christmas to stretch their legs and this year he just happened to choose Southern California as his destination location? Well, he did.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Santa came early...

Mr. Claus bought Mrs. Claus a beautiful, brand spanking new sewing machine and gave it to her early, because that is the sweet - thoughtful kind of guy he is.
I am beyond excited! I can't wait to set up my machine, thread it, put my foot on the pedal and go. I have dreams of making my babies pajamas, costumes and whatever else their little hearts desire. If you can't find me just listen for the sounds of sewing and you will find me there.


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

choo choo

One stormy, windy, rainy, foggy evening this Mom took her boys, one of her best friends, 0ne of the boys best friends and Uncle Carl to a place far, far away, known as Campo. This is where one boards the antique train that will take you all the way to the North Pole to pick up Santa.

It is very magical and includes hot cocoa, chocolate chip cookies, Christmas carols, Santa, jingle bells, a hobo and so much more. Reef told Santa that he would like a race car for Christmas. As Santa replied, 'a car,' Reef quickly corrected him with, 'NO! A RACE car please.' I am feeling confident that Santa will be able to fill this tall order. If you are ever looking for a magical evening on a train check it out here.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

In the swing of things

So, here we are in the full swing holiday mode.

The advent calendar has been going great. We have been making our own Christmas wrapping paper with paint and stamps; crafting with friends and making our own Christmas ornaments.

I have found the simplest recipe of all for cinnamon ornaments. You take half a cup of cinnamon and dump it into a mixing bowl. Next step is to take half a cup of applesauce and dump it too in the same mixing bowl - mix and roll or pat out the dough and you are set! It is that simple. We used cookie cutters to make our ornaments and took the end of a straw to make the hole to hang with ribbon or bakers twine. Really very sweet and your house will smell lovely all day. I used wax paper to cut our ornaments on because they do take a full day or two to dry.

We have been playing Santa's elves over here and having the best time. The boys and I have been making these darling little gift boxes and filling them with sweet treats. Every evening we deliver two or three to our friends and neighbors along with our Christmas card. Reef even remembers to say, Merry Christmas! with each delivery. It is a nice way to be able to spend a few minutes with our neighbors during this very busy holiday season.

To top it all off we had chocolate chip cookies and milk for lunch. Shhhh...don't tell Dad. Sometimes you just need to live a little.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Oh, Christms Tree, Oh, Christmas Tree

We had such a lovely day today. The whole family plus my brother-in-law rode our bicycles down to our local Christmas Tree lot where we picked out our very own Christmas tree.

This was our third day Advent activity and it was by far the most fun for the whole family. We have this amazing dutch bicycle called a bakfiets and we (meaning my hubby - as I ride on my own bicycle hauling only a camera) hauled two kiddos, a Christmas tree and a wreath all the way home, which of course included a detour to our favorite local coffee shop for a well deserved coffee and warmed vanilla milk break. Life does not get any better than this! Well, I should mention that we met the most adorable pot-bellied pig named Chorizo at the humane society and that was definetly the icing on the cake for us today. Too bad you are not allowed to own a pig within city limits after said pig turns one year old. We would have been pleased as pie to have taken Chorizo home with us. Baxter our almost six month old pup absolutely adored Mr. Chorizo. They even have the same black and white markings.

For the second day of our Advent fun the boys made cloth ornaments by coloring white cotton fabric with fabric markers and stuffing them with batting. We will be using them as present toppers as well as to hang on our tree. Reef had a grand time decorating with markers and making happy faces, while my little Jacob mainly played peek-a-boo with his fabric. All in all it was simply a good time to be had by all. I must give credit where credit is due and a big Thank You to SouleMama who was the inspiration for this fun craft.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Advent Calendar Activities

For day one on our advent calendar the boys were left a written message that we were going to Warwicks bookstore (a locally independently owned bookstore, don't you just love brick and mortar independents) today to buy some new winter books! As a family we all love to read and do it multiple times a day, in fact, we quite often read the same books multiple times a day. It is so thrilling to share such a passion of mine with my children. Jacob really enjoys eating the books more than reading them, but I am sure with time he too will be asking me to read him his favorite books over and over and over again and with pleasure I will. So our book adventure found us four new books today.

Advent calendar activities are great fun. Tomorrow promises to be just as much fun. A craft for the kiddos. I will post more on that tomorrow.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Oh how I have missed you...

my blog and my fellow bloggers. We had a wonderful Turkey day filled with family and more food than is necessary to feed a small village.

It was wonderful and there was much to be thankful for. If you recall in a previous post I made 'thankful' cards for each person who was with us on Thanksgiving and they were a success - I think each person truly enjoyed them.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

busy bee is very happy

We have been busy, busy bees over here. Crafting and baking are consuming our time these days. The house smells wonderful with cinnamon, pumpkin and sweet potato permeating through each room....mmm. I just love the smells of the holidays. Reef has been waking up each morning asking, "what we are baking today?" and screaming with joy at the chance to push the dining room chair into the kitchen to be my big helper in the very orange apron.

We baked maple 'leaf' cookies dusted with sanding sugar and they are oh. so. good. and filled them in our thankful bags that we made for some of our dear sweet neighbors. Reef and Jacob decorated, filled and hand delivered each bag. We made seven in total and it was great to talk about all that we have to be thankful for...hand-prints and pens were on the top of Reef's list. Who doesn't love a great pen?

Turkey hand-prints (which can be found here) and flower trees decorate our mantel and make me plain happy to look at.
The most exciting news of all.....I am teaching myself to knit!

I have always, always, always wanted to learn to knit and have officially finished one row on my needles. Now if I could just finish out how to make that second row I will really be going places. The amount of giddiness that overcomes me every time I think about knitting or picking up my needles is that of a silly school girl, but I can not help it. It brings me true happiness. For Christmas I am almost positive I am getting my sewing machine and then there will be no stopping me. If any of you have any suggestions or links for knitting or sewing machines I would love to have them!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

good karma

I am so honored to have received an award for my young and developing blog, I could just *pinch* myself. A huge Thank You to my sister-in-law, Maggie, who happens to be a very talented writer, for this lovely award. Please check out her blog and talents here.
Kreativ Blogger

The rules are:
- List six things that make you happy
- Pass the award on to 6 more kreativ bloggers
- Link back to the person who gave you the award
- Link to the people you are passing it on to and leave them a comment to let them know.

6 Things That Make Me Happy
^the crunch of leaves under my feet with a moroccan mint green tea latte in hand
^my new pursuits of sewing and knitting
^the smell of books...D.G. Wills book store smells amazing
^my boys and our puppy playing and laughing together so hard they turn all red and rosy cheeks
^great vintage finds
^the color turquoise

May I have the envelope no particular order
Miscellaneous Title X
Uncommon Grace
Soule Mama
to be continued.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

on set

Our dear friend Britta was nice enough to invite us on to her set, the Ex List, a television series she is filming on CBS and show us the ropes. We had a blast meeting the crew and an actor or two.

The set up to shoot a television series is amazing. The equipment is phenomenal and I could have stayed there all night learning the ins and outs of how it all works. Reef was very quiet during our tour taking it all in. At first I did not think he was very interested at all, but after we returned home he proceeded to give his Dad a 10 minute monologue on his evening and all of the giant cameras that he will ride one day on set.

Guess he liked it after all. Reef's closing statement for the night, "I had fun with Britta and the big cameras!" Jacob appropriately clapped. Thanks Britta.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Feeling Thankful

We have been keeping very busy around here with Thanksgiving activities. We are in the process of starting our Thanksgiving festivities, to include; our thankful tree, which will be posted about later and our Thankful cards. This year we are hosting Thanksgiving dinner at our house and at each place setting I am writing a note as to why I am thankful for having them in my life.

So, I sit down with my smencil pencil (which smells delicious by the way) and away I write. I thought at first it might be challenging, but quickly found the challenge to be in keeping it all to fit on the size of a standard index card. Theses are my rough drafts and I will transfer them over to pretty cardstock (any suggestions?) hand written of course and set them at the table. I asked Reef what he was thankful for and he exclaimed,"hand prints!" I couldn't agree more. Who doesn't love to make hand prints with paint?
Here is a link to where you can buy your own smencils and other fun art supplies from Stubby Pencil Studio.

Have you ever heard of a Thankful flower? We make them this time of year and you most likely will have almost all of the supplies you need on hand already which is something I love.

Coffee filter-check
watercolor paint-check
cup of water-check
pipe cleaner-check
construction paper-check
Dip the paintbrush in the water, dip the paintbrush in chosen color of paint, drip or make dots on the filter. Let air dry and take the pipe cleaner and wrap around the center of the filter making a flower. Attach a cut out of a leaf and write a note of thanks on the leaf. Attach the leaf and remember to take a little time to smell the flowers.


It is amazing how band-aids possess magic powers in our house. They cover up invisible owie's and make everything better. Along with the obligatory kiss that makes me feel better too. There is something about kissing sweet toddler toes that makes me smile.

Alas, after the band aid has been placed on just the right spot we are ready to head over to Maggie's Surprise Birthday Party! An event we have been looking forward to all week. It was a total and complete success.
Happy Birthday Sweet Maggie!

Add Image

What surprises have you been blessed with lately?

Friday, November 14, 2008


I never thought I would actually have a blog. I find my time so limited with raising boys, puppies and keeping the house together, but I have been so inspired by others blogs that I have decided to leap into the world of blogging and I am so glad I have. I am reminded to take the time to enjoy our day, reflect on all the goodness that comes with having a family and most importantly to document it! I love to take pictures and this blog helps me to take the time to do it.

I look forward to posting about our daily life, craftings, baking, cooking, parenting, reading and general creating. It is not a specified blog, such as food or knitting, but I hope that you find connections of my daily life to yours. After all this blogging is really a way for us to reach out to one another, share and enjoy.