Sunday, August 31, 2008

Sunday Update, The Great Balloon Adventure!

Would you like to come on a magical adventure with us? Lucky you, you can come on our adventure without getting up at 5:15 in the morning like we did. I'm not sure, that just might be considered child abuse. But it is all worth it when you get to see this:

That is right! Hot air Baaaallloooooooons!
So find a spot right up front where you can see all the action as the great beauties start to come to life! (Yes, Mr. Joshua looked like this most of the morning-really not sure about this!)

If you are careful you can even tromp between them with your dad!

You can even get so close you can feel the heat from the gorgeous fire bringing the balloon to life!

Or you can stick with your tough mom to protect you from the fire-breathing type noises coming from those big beauties.

They slowly start to lift their lovely heads...

Suddenly a bunch of them are bobbing around waiting for lift off!

Oh, my goodness! Watch out for balloons that look like crazy monsters named Gizmo!

Hey, look! He is friends with Hopper T. Frog!

Explanation: Every year since Brittany was a baby our family has gone up into the mountains of Utah on Labor Day weekend and basked in the magic that the hot air balloon festival there creates. It was one of our traditions I missed the most. This year William found one in our new part of the world. Although we were all a bit cranky the rest of the day it was wonderful fun. It really is magical. What to come with us next year?

Saturday, August 30, 2008

I am the luckiest girl!

I have the best friends! My childhood friend Tif sent me the greatest surprise today! She is known for two things, especially with my kids. Sending us beautiful loveboxes, and packaging them in irresistible packaging. To my kids this means there will be little surprises and sweet treats in addition to a wonderful lovebox. I usually share the treats so they will agree to a hands-off policy where my loveboxes are concerned.

This is the package we received today! Isn't it darling? Tif know how much I love Halloween and she is kicking things off in great style!

I love the package so much I usually try to put off opening it as long as I can (as long as my kids will let me!) This is this year's Halloween box! I love it! I had to borrow Tif''s picture because I just can't open it yet! Thanks so much Tif! We love it all!

These are the other Halloween boxes Tif has given me. Aren't they amazing? If you are wishing you could start your own collection she has lots to choose from in her shop!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Silent Auction for Nie

Update: My dear sweet friend Jenn is the winning bid! Thank you everybody! This was an amazing experience! I think most people wandering around blog land the last few weeks have heard about the awful accident Stephanie, the author of the NieNieDialogues and her husband Chrisitan were in resulting in a really long stay and recovery in the burn unit. If you haven't you can read about it here.
Okay, so here is my offering for what is being declared by Design Mom Nie day. This is how it works. I am auctioning a set of my nesting dolls, in colors I think Nie would approve of, and one of my bluebird necklaces. Here are the rules.

1. Bidding will start at $10 . If you would like to bid you leave a comment committing an amount. It is sort of like ebay, you can come back and keep bidding should you so desire.

2.The auction will close Friday night at 10 p.m. Whoever bids the highest will win, I will contact them and then they will click on the donate to Nie button on the left over there. Let me know if you need any help. Forward me a copy of the receipt and your address and I will package these cuties up as pretty as I possibly can and off they will go to their new homes!

This is so exciting to be part of such a wonderful effort to help an incredible family who is handling a great challenge with amazing grace. Oh, and be sure and visit Design mom if you haven't already to check out all the great auctions. I know I am going to!

If you have any questions email or leave me a comment, I will do my best to help!
Even if you don't bid today, maybe say an extra little prayer for this precious family. We hope they are all back together really soon!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I love my mailman!

I do really love my mailman, he brings me the nicest treats! Of course it is my lovely friends who are really responsible but he gets the fun of delivering!
I won this gorgeous necklace a little while back from Lori . Isn't it pretty? Some of my favorite things, jewelry, pink sparklies and vintage prints! Thanks so much Lori I love it!

Not only is my childhood friend Circe good at sharing the potato chips that used to be in my school lunch (old story from the fourth grade), but she is great at sharing books! She finished this and wanted to share it and I won the giveaway she hosted to give it away. I have started it now and it seems appropriate to send you to read the classic post she did about another book by the same author here. One of my all-time favorite blog posts ever! Luckily Josh still naps and the other two are in school so hopefully that will help curtail the neglect at our house.

Thanks girls, you are the best!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Back to School!

It was a happy, happy morning! Kids popped out of bed excited to go! That is what happens when you had good teachers last year. Everybody put on their new clothes (would you believe that is the one non-golf type shirt I bought Matthew in a moment of weakness? of course that is what he had to wear) and new backpacks, even Josh.
Happiness is discovering your best friend is in your class!
Matthew's too!
And I only went back and forth between classes for about five minutes checking on them...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Sunday Update

First of all I want to share our balloon launch! I have followed C Jane and Nie Nie's blogs for a long time. Their's are the sort of blog that are fun to visit whether you know them or not. Their love of live and sense of humor is sure to brighten my day. On Aug 16 Nie and her husband Christian were in an awful airplane accident you can read about here. So to show our love and support, and I guess a visual version of our prayers, people all over the world let balloons off with their wishes for Nie and Christian's recovery and family attached yesterday.

Matthew was off with Dad so Brittany was my launcher. I have to say I have thought a lot about how grateful I am for my happy, healthy family since Nie's accident. Hopefully I am being a nicer mom too, just because I can.

Matthew and his dad were off at the Good Guys car show yesterday.

William said the theme of their day was hunting for "woodies"

Don't you love the colors?!

Apparently root beer in hand is a requirement. They had loads of fun!

It was a lovely, sort of lazy day. Brittany and I played with sculpey clay and watched Enchanted. Then the kids and the dad watch Mythbusters (their new favorite) and washed cars! Yeah, mine was really dirty!

So now these are all ready to go. Well, the backpacks anyhow! Tomorrow we will have a first grader and a fourth grader. I can't believe it! Good thing that little guy in the middle is staying with me so I don't get too sad!

P.S. Brittany just lost another tooth and wanted me to post it for the relatives! Cute isn't she? We are thinking of getting her baby food soon though, not many left!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Shop Update

Finally finished! Well, all six girls are now finished and in the Shop! There ought to be at least a dozen of them for all the whining I have done lately. I am happy with them though.

I did decide to send a little kitty I made from painted muslin with each of them so they won't have to travel alone. There were actually seven but one is going to a swap so I won't show her yet.

I got a few of these brooches in the shop too. I love when my spaciness (like forgetting to poke holes in the clay before I bake it!) results in something I like. More often it results in frustrations and mess!

Everybody have a great last weekend of summer!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Three Little Witches!

Well, I did it! I finally finished some of the witchy girls. I sort of stalled out on this project, not an unusual problem for me. But these three are finished, unless I decide to give everyone a kitty which I might. I have three more to finish, hopefully tonight. I think I will have a little shop update tomorrow. I am going to try and get them listed by 1 pm but it will probably take all day long. I will post a picture in the morning so if you see anyone you would like to give a home leave me a comment or email and I will save myself listing it!

I am quite happy with these little girls. They are my smaller size. They measure about 11" with their hats on. This little one has a purple crinoline slip to match her hair and stockings.
This little Miss is taking her pretty kitty trick or treating. It is hard to tell but her hair is a really soft green.

This little witchy-poo likes a darker green for her hair. Oh, and rick rack trimmed dresses!

There will be fairy brooches in the shop too ( what happens when you forget to make the holes in the pendants? You get to make brooches!). I am so happy some of my necklaces are already on their way to some of my favorite bloggy friends! They sure are fun to make and those fairy images are just absolutely me. Thanks for all the lovely comment you all leave, it is so much more fun to make these funny creations when you have somewhere to show and tell!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Fairies in the Shop!

I finished some more fairies today and put them in the shop. I am really enjoying them!
I made a couple of bluebirds for the shop too. I find I have worn mine a lot. Amazing what goes with blue!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

More Jewelry

Those poor little witches wonder if they will ever be done! I keep getting distracted. I am obsessed with pretty necklaces I guess. There was a tutorial on Make and take yesterday that I was thrilled to see. I always wondered what they put on those scrabble tile necklaces I see on etsy to make the hard little dome. Well the mystery was solved and now I am hooked! This is my favorite I made last night/today.
I like the little ladybug too. I have been gluing like crazy this afternoon and will have a bunch of the cutest little fairies ever for the shop tomorrow I hope. I like these necklaces because they are light. As cute as heavier necklaces are they make me feel like I am strangling!

So these too are in the shop today, hoping to be joined by fairies tomorrow and witches by the end of the week.

Oh and this is the fun stuff I have been playing with and the tutorial is here if you want to try too! Oh, and they are giving away a cute pendant too.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sunday Update-Fort Bragg California!

Warning: This post is long and full of pictures! You may also require a trip to the beach after viewing!

We took off on one last little exploring expedition this weekend. William took Friday off and we set off before the crack of dawn up the coast. Our destination was Fort Bragg and Mendicino. It was really beautiful and a lot cooler than home! Of course the kids wanted the beach first.

Matthew and Brittany had rock chucking contests. We think Matthew was punishing the ocean for some reason, he had to yell every time he threw one.

Matthew also created "homemade sea" in his lunch baggy. Neat huh? Unfortunately had to be left behind.

Joshua spent a lot of time singing and talking to the rocks. He was happy here for a really long time!

Then the fog started to roll in. We learned from experience this area has a lot of fog in the morning and evening. Who is that handsome guy emerging from the fog?
Which is why this was an important, but really pretty structure. We walked the half mile out see the lighthouse.

The kids tried to make friends with this squirrel. He was frighteningly friendly too!

We got to the station just in time to see the Skunk train too. (called the Skunk train because of the smell when it used to run in the old days). Our first real steam train up this close. Thomas must have been a lot noisier than he is portrayed!

Mendicino was a gorgeous little village. East of Eden was filmed there and so was a lot of Murder She Wrote. I want to see East of Eden now.

Everywhere you turned there were gorgeous buildings and gardens.

I loved this sculpture on top of a church there. I think it was an angel with a young girl. It took us a minute to realize the bird on the angel's head is a real seagull!

I wish we had time to see this stained glass from the inside.

We came home through part of the redwood forests. Those trees really are big and this wasn't even the portion where the "giant" redwoods live.

Oh, before we left Mendicino we found this portion of the largest redwood harvested in the area. Big isn't it? It was over 1000 years old!

The forest really did seem magical. There is something about sunlight coming through all those leaves that makes it seem like fairies really could live there!

Wow, I guess we really did do a lot in two days!