Friday, January 28, 2011

on childhood and maturity

While recently in the book store I paged through a how-to-blog kind of a book. Somewhere in the first third it said something about how to use as few words as possible on each post. It struck me as amusing as I envisioned a blogging “expert” critiquing my blog. What would they say? Maybe not to write so much about nothing? Maybe to have an actual point?

This is where the surprise of blogging comes in for me. One of the things I love most about it was accidental. In the beginning I spoke of my kids with trepidation, but now three years later these silly little posts have given these mothering days a timeline of life. With just a few clicks I can see Henry’s first scraped knees or our house in Illinois. All those everyday thoughts I would have otherwise swept into the dustpan of a hurried life.


Just this morning I was thinking about how unique it is that our kids are kind of spaced out in age and the somersault of emotions that comes with that. Having our oldest away at school while her brother is here at home finding joy in getting to use a glue stick for the first time, it’s kind of a strange thing but it makes me happy all the same.

In the mailbox today was an assortment of postcards from Hadley.


She wrote this one to her Dad, who sent her a card that never made it to her box (and it had money in it!) and he hasn’t sent another one since.


It made me cry, her silly but heartfelt words to her Dad.

I’m not sure how to describe my relationship with my own Dad but I don’t think I could ever write and ask him if I should be a Trekkie.

And this was all in my head today as I sat to read Henry his afternoon prenap story and garumphed at him because he was taking forever to choose one. Then as he hoisted himself into my lap I realized he picked one of Hadley’s favorites.


It felt like just last week that I was garumphing at her to hurry up and pick a book. I try not to think about things like when was the last time I read Hadley a story? When was the last time she hoisted herself into my lap? Was I too busy to notice she was growing up?

And then my thoughts settle and I realize childhood is fleeting and the rest of the story is writing itself as we speak, kids grow up and learn from their parents then parents get older and learn from their kids.

And so even though I wrote this whole post myself I’m still not 100% on the point of it all. The blog expert would tell me I used way too many words. I would tell the blog expert to go suck on a lemon.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Sew More

Lately I have had a thirst to sew. I spend more time figuring out what to make than I do actually sewing and sometimes that is just as much fun.


A bias trimmed apron out of some of my favorite fabric. I think it’s an American Jane print.


Unlike the corduroy vest I recently posted about these overalls from the same fabric have no secrets. And I realize they might be a bit geeky but Henry is four and can still get away with a little geeky/cute.



I’m hoping for his sake I realize when geeky/cute is just geeky.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

owls and argyle


Molly was home sick from school today but I still asked her to model an outfit. Is that mean?

I actually made this as a tunic to wear with jeggings but going upstairs to get the jeggings seemed like too much work at the time. She had these humungous argyle socks on that she wears as often as she can because her sister gave them to her. They kind of match, and you gotta work with what you got.


The dress is Simplicity 4927.

This week has been stinky. Do you ever have weeks like this? I’m wondering if I should wait until next week to be smiley and nice or should I just finish the week out like this…all snarky and full of vinegar. Decisions, decisions.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Corduroy Vest with a Secret

A corduroy vest seemed just the thing to make for Henry.  He is a young boy who is made up of equal parts rough cowboy and charming lad.  Often though the rough cowboy is the one that comes along with me to grocery shop or run to the post office.  


The flannel lined vest is perfect for the unpredictable winds of Texas.  It’s also nice to cover up any remnants of egg yolk from the morning’s breakfast, as you will see in the next picture.


He likes having a secret vest, and I know I feel better knowing the Marshal is always along in case we’re fixin to run into any trouble.

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The badges are under $1 at walmart and have a little metal piece that slides into a  loop I sewed on the inside of the vest.


Red taunts Henry whether or not he is the law.


Happy days to you and yours!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

as the sun sets on another good day

It is a satisfying feeling to sit here and watch the sun sink into the horizon after a nice weekend.   The sky that was kind of heavy and gray all day now has brilliant shades of pink and oranges peeking out of its edges.  I think this is a good indicator for less gray and more blue tomorrow.

Gray days are good for staying inside and doing things.  And that is just what happened…lots of doing.  Sewing, baking and more organizing than I thought possible.  


I made this loaf of bread from our go-to recipe we use in the bread machine each week.  Only this time after letting the machine do most of the work I took the dough and shaped it, letting it rise near the woodstove for an hour.  I baked it in the regular oven at 350.  Remembering what Julia Child said about French bakeries and humidity I added a small cast iron skillet of water to the lower shelf and sprayed the bread a few times intermittently with a water mist.  And if you’ll let me brag:  it was very, very, very good.  Did you see I used very 3x? 

As I write this the Patriots game is on VERY LOUD.  And they are losing which means someone is speaking to the TV VERY LOUD.  Boy oh boy I guess I’d better go and roller-skate through the living room naked, that always cheers him up.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

glassware and book reading


Aside from the deployments I think selling a house is my least favorite thing about being military family.  I can deal with the moving (it’s kind of exciting) and though the missing of family can wear me down it makes seeing them that much sweeter.  But the selling of a house? It makes me crazy… the sheer abruptness of having to clear out and have the house clean at a moments notice so someone can look at it. Double ugh.

Lately I have been cleaning all those things that I never clean, like light fixtures and all the glassware in the bar.

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I put some silk forsythia in the dining room even though it’s only January, it brightened me right up.


It feels like a routine, this business of setting the house straight.  I box up lots of my books and knick knacks to make the house seem less cluttered.  In doing this I came across my Besty-Tacy books.  Have you read them?


I wish I could say I read them as a child but the truth is I was well into my twenties when I read the first and slowly found them at yard sales ‘for my daughters’ and brought them to my own bookshelf soon after.  The last five are my favorite.  I have read them over and over. 


So now I’ve shared books and told you I’ve been cleaning…let me zoom out a bit.


There is still much to do. Double sigh.

Friday, January 7, 2011

before I blog/ New Year’s thoughts

It’s the perfect time of year to think about what needs a bit of perking up.  Besides the obvious (my figure) I have slumped in many areas of my life.  In the past I prided myself with the ability to get it all done, you know? The cooking, the cleaning, the occasional game with the kids…  I think I was  organized emotionally. I’m not anymore.  Often I wake with the doom of having a lot to get done and that feeling seems to hang around for much of the day.

Writing makes me happy, I look forward to posting and always have fragmented posts reciting themselves in my head throughout the day.  I tried telling myself that I had to earn that hour or so in the afternoon when I can type away carefree.  That didn’t work too well-hence the lack of posts, only I could be my own student and not quite follow the rules.  My kids laugh when I say hence, don’t people say hence anymore?

When I find myself with some spare time I usually end up in the recliner watching all the taped episodes of “If  Walls Could Talk”.  (Which by the way is a great show on HGTV on early Tuesday and Thursday mornings and might just be worth any amount of procrastination on any given day.) 

It’s a moving year for us, just thinking about this makes me bleh.  But I have the desire to Aim High until then and I really must clean up my act.

I have resolutions that are much like everybody else's, like being a better wife and mother. 

But also I would like to stop buying Martha stuff at TJ Maxx just because it’s a good price. This is one of those things that I may have said in humor at the officer spouse club coffee but really deep inside I mean it.  Is there counseling for people who can’t stop buying Martha craft junk?


Also I have enough glitter. I don’t need to buy anymore. It’s really hard to write that.


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I will put the armoire to better use in our bedroom, rather than stuffing it with old diaper boxes full of patterns.  I don’t need to buy anymore patterns for the rest of my life, as there are more diaper boxes under the bed and in the barn.  Though please credit me for the magnificent reduce, reuse, recycle usage of diaper boxes.


I will put clothes away before I blog. This may sound silly but sadly laundry is a huge part of my life.  If I’m not the one doing the washing then I am the one who is yelling at someone (whose age ends in teen) to switch or fold or unball 40 pairs of gym socks.  This is an edited version of I will make sure the house is clean and exercise before I blog.  The unedited one was really, really hard.


The most important one: I will take better care of my mother…


because she took care of me.

And because I love her.

Have you resolved to be better this year?  Please share!