Monday, February 28, 2011

Happy Birthday to the Queen Bee

Dear Mom:

Happy Birthday! I hope you have a wonderful day today, even though we can't spend it together. I hope you live it up and go out to eat and don't do any laundry today.

Thank you for encouraging me now that I am a mama, too. And thank you for teaching me that it's important to be creative, especially when you have children.

Here are some pics of the fabric you sent me. I love it!

And I love you!


Well, this isn't fabric, but it makes me think of you. I bought this plaque from Back Home a couple of weeks ago.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Believing in Magic or Becoming My Mother

My mother is a collector. Of antiques, of dolls, of lace patterns, embroidery magazines, lost arts. I remember being dragged to antique doll shows as a child, staying close to my mother as she meandered through row after row of vendors stalls' lined with tiny porcelain dolls and clothes and quilts. My dad would take a book and read outside; my sisters and I stayed with our mom, equal parts thrilled and alarmed by the miniature creatures peering at us from the displays. When you're little, the lines between truth and fantasy are awfully blurry.

These pictures are from my mother's dining room china cabinets. I took these pictures when we were in San Antonio for my birthday a couple of weeks ago.

These little dolls and the scenes my mother created held so much wonder for me as a child. I would stare at the tiny cakes and shoes and fur wraps and wonder about the lives of these little porcelain creations, never questioning their origin. They were real to me. I don't expect William to be thrilled with a whole set of Barbie shoes on a pink plastic three-tiered display, but I do want our house to hold wonder and magic for him. Our house doesn't have ANYTHING like this right now. Sure, I love our Pottery Barn paisley print velvet pillows, but that's just me.

So today I went to Hobby Lobby and picked up these. 

They're nothing special to most people. But in a few years, I plan on roughing up these tiny canvas gloves and leaving them in our backyard garden. "William," I will say, "look! Do you think a little elf left these here?" And then I will point to the tiny metal pail and fishing pole and real net. "Where did these come from?" And we will search for the miniature garden elf who left his things. Maybe we'll make some cookies and roll a very tiny pinch of dough just for him.

Keep Calm and Craft On

What is it with my family and taking on hats?  I mentioned yesterday that I started knitting a hat for William for next winter.  The good news is that I finished the hat, and it only took me a couple of hours from start to finish!  The bad news is that I made a few mistakes.

 Above is a picture of Don wearing the hat. He let me stick it on his head so that I could try to figure out how to fix it. It was late, and patience is not one of my virtues. I ended up using my sewing machine and white thread (my judgment dissipates as the night wears on) to sew a straight seam through the hole to seal it up.

Here's a picture of William wearing the hat this morning. I lifted the shadows out of the photo so that I could show you the detail. See those slanted knit rows on the brim? They were supposed to be straight! At least I was consistently crooked. And yes, I let William use my iphone as a teething toy. Those Otter cases are genius!

Oh, well, little one. I tried to knit a hat for you. Just like I try to take pictures of you and me, and all you can see is the camera covering our faces. The point is that I try, right? It was my first attempt, so it's okay that it didn't really work out. I'll try to knit another one that actually fits and doesn't require the use of a sewing machine. 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

An Ordinary Day in February

Just a regular day with William. Grocery shopping, nursing, folding laundry, washing diapers. I know it won't always be like this, peaceful and serene. Most days our house is loud and bright, but today was different. William was on the quiet side (his newest tooth is bothering him), and we spent the day crawling, reading, and enjoying the slightly gray view outside our windows.

He's eating PLAIN greek yogurt (siiiick). I'm so proud of him.
I'm knitting a hat for William for next winter. Yes, next winter. That's how long it takes me to finish things like this.
Diaper washing day. If you use cloth diapers, too, you know why I have a Mrs. Meyer's candle lit.
Laundry, laundry everywhere.

He just can't help himself.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Letter to My Boy

Dear William, heart of my heart, happy clapping dancer, eater of leaves, seeker of dust bunnies,

You are my little dare devil, my napping baby, my chubby boy. You are growing every day, and I am so, so proud of your sweet, smiling face. You are my best eight months. You are God's love in 30 inches. We are so happy He gave you to us.

You just woke up from your nap. You fell asleep sucking on a paci and it left a perfect imprint on your mouth.

Monday, February 21, 2011

In Living Color: Mundane but Vivid Everyday Things

Greek yogurt in a coffee mug.

Gouda cheese pin cushion.

Blueberries for William (pre-puree).

Cookie batter.

My side of the bathroom drawer. I've had the control paste literally since 2005.

Jewelry is STILL unorganized.

I'd been looking all over for these guys. Maybe I'll find my long-lost best gold hoop earrings when I organize that mess of jewelry. Probably not.

Peanut butter icing.

Happiness is a diet coke at 3 pm.

I love you Kitchen-Aid mixer. The only thing that would make you more awesome is if you were pink with painted sprinkles. And a cherry on top.

Please know that it was Don's idea to get french fries, not mine.

Pureed strawberries for William. Making baby food is the most gratifying kitchen task ever.

Decapitated strawberries' heads. Poor little things.

Friday, February 18, 2011

A Story in Pictures: Girl, Interrupted

***Post Note: After my little sister read this post, she asked if it was staged. Uh, no. I was able to capture the whole thing with my camera because I have my camera around my neck about 99.9% of the time and was messing with the settings when I heard the boys approach. Anyway, in the words of my father, this is a trooooooooo story.

When Don gets home from work, I'm supposed to get a little break from playing super mommy all day. Don takes William on a run (thank you, Bob the jogging stroller) or plays with him in the living room and I dive onto the bed in the sewing/painting/editing photos/guest room and sink into the pillows and read a magazine and soak up the setting sunlight.

But most times, the playing cannot be restricted to the living room or outside. After only five minutes, it found me tonight.

Just me, reading my Southern Living and fantasizing about painting the guest room bright coral.

Here they come.

They just look like trouble, don't they?

Goodbye, Southern Living. Maybe I'll see you tomorrow?

People always told me my life would be different once I had children, but no one ever told me that it would be years before I'd get to read a magazine cover to cover again.