Saturday, November 29, 2008

Handmade for Christmas

So did everyone have a great Black Friday? What is it about being out in the wee hours of the morning (night?) without my kids hunting bargins that is just so much fun?! I had a great time although I was done and back home before my family was even out of bed. My sister however, takes it to a whole other level and didn't stop until late afternoon. It was so fun to check on her craziness on cell phones throughout the day!
So in the spirit of kicking off the holiday shopping season I am displaying the Handmade pledge logo. I love making things for Christmas, have since I was a little girl. There is something about a handmade gift that just expresses love. I hope the people I give things to feel the same way! Now I am not completely committed I guess, I mean there are just some things I just can't make. Ever try to make a Lego? But I try to give my kids at least one handmade item every Christmas, other folks on my list get handmade too sometimes. I know not everyone enjoys making things like I do, so I thought I would start spotlighting a few of my favorite artists and crafters here at least once a week until Christmas.

My absolute favorite. I know I am biased, having enjoyed this girl's friendship most of my life but you will not believe the treasure you receive if you order someone you love a lovebox. They come in the prettiest little bags and if you really want to make someone feel loved splurge for the extra gift wrap.

Noodle and Lou
I found Jenn awhile ago in blogland and I am so glad I did. Her art is so amazing, I have a few pieces and just adore them. She has cards and darling prints in her etsy shop and sometimes even the most precious ornaments and tiny houses. She also has a cafepress shop that can supply you with darling bags, aprons, mugs and such.
I hope you enjoy my picks, check out their shops and if you have any favorites let me know!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving. I am trying to pay attention to all of my little blessings today especially. Of course I am so grateful for all of my "big" blessings; my family, my health, parents who are so very kind enough to let my wild bunch stay with them, being back near family, so many wonderful things. But last night at the end of the day I was asking the kids for a couple of things they were thankful for. Brittany gave me a hug and said her mom(direct result of having gotten to have a friend over to play all day I think!). Matthew, having had this question in church last week I think quickly rattled off; his family, his friends, his skeleton and temples. Yep, his skeleton. I had to think about that a minute. Where would I be without my skeleton? A big lump of mush I guess. My skeleton is something I take for granted, but it is the foundation of my body. Just like the other things he mentioned are foundations too, I would be a big pile of mush without my family, my friends and my church that has temples to inspire, teach and protect my family. So today I am thankful for my big blessings and my little ones and I hope that in between my turkey and my pie, which I am also thankful for by the way, I will remember to be thankful for all the little things that keep me from becoming a pile of mush!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Let the festivities begin!

Saturday we went to Brittany's ballet school's production of The Nutcracker with my sister and her girls. It was amazing they use a lot of the kids from the school and then have Ballet West dancers for the Snow Queen, Sugar Plum fairy and their partners. It was the first tradition to be reinstated after our return to Utah. I have to say it felt great. What is it about The Nutcracker that is comforting and enjoyable. There are many things I would not want to sit through year after year. But sign me up for Nutcracker! I especially love going to the same production, love seeing the familiar sets, picking out which costumes are new and watching for any friends we might have dancing.
Do these little faces look excited or what? Matthew was so great. After getting over his initial shock that he couldn't wear jeans he insisted on wearing his suit. Then went on the hunt for a top hat so he could really look the part of our gentleman escort. I had to talk him out of using Great-grandpa's Army dress hat instead. It was a fabulous night, the little dancers were great, the principals were amazing and the music never fails. I couldn't help but think of my friend Tiff's comment a year or two ago though, shouldn't all Sugar Plum fairies be pink? Oh, well maybe she will be next year! Now I am ready, let the Holidays begin!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Wanted: New Homes!

These girls are all in the shop! Except for the one in pink toile on the end and she was so much fun to make that if you fall in love with her and need one of your own you can email or convo me and I could be talked into making another!
I am hoping to have some nesting dolls and some birdie necklaces again soon too!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Shop Preview!

Just thought I would give you a sneak peek. I am hoping to have the shop re-opened on Monday and have an update that afternoon. There will be dolls for sure, these girls couldn't wait to be finished before showing themselves off, and maybe a few other things.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hey, this is fun!

Yesterday after school I decided we should go to the park and have a little fun. In the midst of all this moving garbage I had somehow forgotten that my kids can be fun to hang out with. There had been a fair share of bickering and a lot of mom saying really uplifting stuff like "stop that", "be nice" etc. Not a lot of fun. So off to the park to enjoy the sunshine we went. And it was a lot of fun!
We parked the car and there was a huge flock of Canadian geese having a little snack. They were much more dignified than the unruly herd of ducks and geese. They literally stampeded us. I had to swing at them with my sack of snacks. They were a little too tame!
Don't you just want to yell "Run, Josh, run!?"
This particular park is one of the few left with a merry-go-round as my kids call it. There was a sweet tween age boy who gave my kids some serious lessons.
Check out the Matthew tricks!
And only Joshua ended up like a monkey in the zoo!
A good afternoon. Good to remember that having kids really is fun!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A boy and his shirt

It has been awhile since I put up a little project so I thought I would add one today

My oldest boy has a favorite shirt. Unfortunately it hasn't grow as he has. So after finally getting to see way too much of his belly button we performed a shirt-saving operation. I thought there might be a mom or two in need of the same thing.

First I cut off the sleeves right at the shoulder.

Then I just laid it on top of a larger sweatshirt(sorry another photo might have been nice here!) I pinned it in place and then just zig-zagged the edge all the way around.

Presto! Happy boy! And the shirt should be good for at least another year!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

More Thankfulness!

I have the prettiest drive to take the kids to school these days. The other morning it was so clear and crisp and blue I had to take some pictures on the way.
I am so grateful to be back to scenes like this. That is the range of mountains to the west of us, versus the Wasatch to the east. You can't see them as easily, lots of houses now in lots of places. But I am so glad I get to see this! (And I didn't alter the picture at all--I'm not that skilled!)
These are the mountains to the east. Just such beeeauuutiful mornings around here lately!
Then there are these beautiful faces! I can't even put in words how grateful I am that the kids are so happy at their new school. Being able to come back to familiar friends made all the difference in the world!
I want to do a dance every time I pass a gas station these days! I never thought I would see these numbers again! Hey, anybody want to go for a drive? It is so much more fun when gas is cheaper!
See, I am so blessed!

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Perfectly Perfect Day!

This weekend we finally managed to get up to visit William's parents in their mountain retreat in Idaho. It really does feel like that. I don't know if it is because they pretty much stopped whatever they were doing to have fun with us, the gorgeous scenery, Oma's yummy cooking, or just the fun of going somewhere different, but it really was practically perfect.
This is my favorite view from the treehouse the kids love to play in.

The view from the back of the house, even after the Fall colors have fallen I still love it.

Joshua loves "porch cat". Cats in the country don't get real names I guess, they have a job to do. Opa sometimes thinks the "cool kitty" as Joshua calls him, spends too much time on the porch and not enough earning his keep so he is called porch cat. And yes, I realize it is a miracle Joshua didn't get his cut little self scratched for bother poor
Porch Cat.

Matthew's favorite part of any visit is riding the four wheeler with Opa. After insisted "me ride wheeler too!" he got to have a ride too. I have an inherent dread of four-wheelers, fed by my ever-present fear of something happening to my kids, but Opa is always really careful and they ride in the field where no one else can bother them.

Opa dug out this really cool scooter too. It used to be William's sister's. I have never seen one like it but is sure was fun going down the gravel hill!

See what I mean, a perfect day! The weather was perfect, the food Oma made special for us was so yummy and lots of fun was had by all!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Good Night, Mr. Tom

I've decided to plug my pick for the Book Blogging Babes book club. For those of you who may not know, a group of us formed an online book club. It is great fun, we all take turns picking the book of the month and then we review it either on our own blogs or the book club blog. So feel free to join us!
So November was my month to pick. I chose Good Night Mr. Tom by Michelle Magorian. It is about a young boy who is evacuated out of London to the country at the beginning of World War Two. I have to admit this is a time period I have always been fascinated by. I have loved this book for a long time, have recommended it for other book clubs although I haven't used it for one before. I am having a great time re-reading it and trying to decide what exactly it is that I like about the story. I should finish this week. I will let you know when my review is posted over here.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Being Thankful

I have decided in the spirit of this month when we take a little extra time to think of all we are blessed with that I would start paying attention to some of the things I am thankful for and posting them. This is an exercise for me more than you, my lovely visitor. I have to admit that ownership of a house many miles away, which is stalling our ability to find the next one tends to get to me occasionally. But on the scale of life challenges it still ranks pretty low, I would definitely chose to be a little stuck than to deal with some of the things I see people around me handle with grace. So I thought the process of thinking, photographing and posting my blessing would be very healthy for me. I want to pay attention to my little blessings as well as my big ones too.
Here is the first one. I love being back with my mountains!! Just look at them dusted with fresh snow! And this isn't even a great picture, I just stood out on my mom's back patio and shot. The area were we lived in California was pretty but if you wanted to see something like this you had to drive. I love that I see the mountains on my way to school, the grocery store, everywhere! What are you grateful for today?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Happy Birthday Tif!

It is my dear friend Tiffany's birthday. I cannot tell you how precious my friends that I have had since childhood are to me, especially right now. It is so nice to have these girls that I don't have to introduce myself to, explain myself and our current circumstances to and let's face, I don't have to be on my very best behavior all the time! I have so loved getting to see them more since we moved back. I just wish I could find a house in one of their backyards! Tif and I have been friends since grade school but she is more important to me now I think than she was growing up. She has introduced so many great things into my grown up life. More color, lots more art, blogging-she is the one that got me to start this little world, and of course Loveboxes!
She collects birthday celebrating items and loves bright colors so I made this little papercut for her this weekend. It is mounted on a fabric covered panel. It makes me happy to look at. I hope it does her too. It was so fun to make this one I may try and pop a couple in the shop, if I manage to get it open again.
Happy Birthday Tif! You are the best!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Happy November!

Well, now that we are well into November I thought I would show you my mom's pretty creation. The chandelier over the table in my mom's has always been a place to celebrate. Both in her new house and the old one. Lots of holidays and birthdays have been celebrated by her chandelier. This is the first year she has decorated for the Autumn though and I think it turned out just lovely!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


Now how is that for a supporting photo?! I found this book cover on Amazon and thought it was perfect for my little review of the book we Book Blogging Babes read together this month. This was a classic I had never read and probably wouldn't have read on my own--not a science fiction person. But I didn't realize it would have so many elements of other classics I enjoy like the Bronte and Austen books. That same sort of language and style of storytelling I thought. Having said that I have to confess as much as I love Austen, Bronte and E.M. Forster I have to be in just the right mood for them. A sit down and slowly concentrate on this book mood. Lucky for me I was in that sort of mood and really enjoyed it. It was so much more complex and really less creepy than I expected. So put all your Herman Munster type notions aside and read it next October in anticipation of Halloween. I am going to do it again I think!

Don't forget to Vote!

Wouldn't one of these look really cute with your outfit today? Go out and get ya one!
And like my mom always says, if you don't vote you have no right to complain about the state of things!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Happy Birthday William!

Today is my husband William's birthday! Due to the move and his basic dislike of having his picture taken I was experiencing a shortage of pictures to use for this post. Then I remembered this one. It was taken in one of those little photo booths, just after he came home from serving an LDS mission for two years. Look at what baby faces we both have! It got me thinking about how much I love not just our relationship but our history together. We have known each other since we were teenagers and so we really finished growing up together, even after we got married. Some would argue we still are! I am so glad I was smart enough, even at that young age to recognize a perfect guy when I found him. William has been making me laugh, calming me down, surviving the chaos I sometimes create for myself, and helping me have lots of fun along the way for a really long time now. He is a great dad, wonderful husband and the partner I always want along for any adventure, whether it is having kids, moving to a new state or just plan growing up. Happy Birthday William, I am so glad you are mine!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

A Witchy day at Gardiner Village!

Well, now that I have my camera cable, the kids are in school and Halloween is over I am going to try and get back to regular blogging! So in the spirit of my Sunday Updates I thought I would share our little trip to visit witches last week. Gardiner Village is just so fun and getting to go on a day outing with my sister and mom is just why I am so happy to have moved back. As you can see Joshua loved visiting all the fabulous witches and I think they really inspired me with my own Witchy costume!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

So how was your Halloween?

These are our best Halloween faces!
We had such a great day. We were so happy to get to go to the best Halloween party around. My friend Circe has been throwing this Halloween party since our kids were babies and she has gotten bigger and better every year. She used to have a pinata but after a few near misses with the bat it has turned into a candy throw. Definitely a highlight. Here everyone is waiting for it to start flying.

Doesn't this face say "Why in the world is that guy throwing candy off the deck at people?" Miss Marie Antoinette said it was definitely the best ever, and I would have to agree!

For some reason this year I really got into dressing up for Halloween. I guess it is more fun to think of Halloween costumes than being homeless! If you click on that picture you can see my super long sparkly eyelashes!
All in all it was a fabulous Halloween, the kind that reminds me why having kids is a total blast!