Tuesday, December 28, 2010

WIP Wednesday

In between the holidays I'm taking the time to work on a few things. I'm trying to soak up the quiet that this week has blessed us with. Even amidst circumstances that would normally leave us all frazzled (new toys, daddy working long, LOOONG hours, and too much sugar from stocking surprises) things are surprisingly calm in our little home.

As I sit in the rocking chair and watch the munchkins play with their new treasures I've been picking off a few stitches here and there of what will soon be Willow's new slippers. Hot pink, purple, and teal just as she requested.

I am also occasionally found lost in the pages of Mitten Strings for God by Katrina Kenison. Yes, I know I've been reading it for a while. I'm savoring the pages and wisdom that my soul is gleaning from them.

What are you happily at work on this week?

TV free Tuesday

(Cedar taking a "free" ride on his rocking motorcycle thanks to the gift of time, talent, and the loving hands of the one and only Popsy)

I hope everyone had a merry Christmas! We certainly had a relaxing and renewing weekend at home. We were blessed with time off for Daddy Oak, an inspiring experience at Christmas Eve service, so many wonderful and thoughtful gifts (and lessons learned from them), and lots and lots of food! Jeremy surprised me with an Ipod Touch! I've been spending the majority of my free time getting my hands on nearly every GLEE song ever produced and snapping lots of shots with the Hipstamatic app. For someone who has been known to claim nearly complete computer ignorance. . . I am in technological bliss. And I'm pretty certain that I've become a life long Apple customer due to amazing customer service and for the ease of which I (yes, ME!) can program the device and navigate the programs. In love I tell you. IN. LOVE!

Onto other business. . . .

I'm going to sum up the past TV free week with a few words: barbies, superheroes, family, 109837590129740 songs sung, awe at His Glory, new swords! foam ones! thanks Daddy!, bird watching and um. . . superheroes and barbies. Yep, that's our week!

The kids each received a few books that have been in constant rotation.

Being the logical, no nonsense type of gal that she is, Willow was gifted none other than an encyclopedia and a wildlife book along with an extention of her beloved Ranger Rick magazine subscription.

- the Usborne Internet-linked Children's Encyclopedia

- It Stinks to be Extinct by John Lithgow Palooza readers

On the other hand, Cedar was given this. He's a guy of little words . . . until you open up this book. He was saying words we'd never heard come out of his mouth! He loves it and is engrossed in its pages often.

Each year Daddy Oak and I each get the kids a gift. This year he purchased them the swords and I gave them this book along with some binoculars. Despite his jesting that looking at what we're giving the kids shows who's the 'cooler' parent, the kids genuinely do love this book. We spent the better part of yesterday afternoon outside feeding and watering birds (who are missing and who we hope find our bribes), laying in the snow listening for calls and becoming giddy with excitement when Willow spotted the one and only bird of the afternoon with the specs.

I'm trying to come up with some more activities to do outside for the coming week. I think we'll do the iced stained glass craft again. It was a hit last year. Willow thinks we need to make many of them to share with our neighbors. What a great idea!

I also want to make peanut butter pinecones, some popcorn and cranberries on string and a few other treats for the birdies to hang on our tree while it waits for the recycling truck. I was inspired by this post by Ginny at Small Things. Her blog always inspired my heart and strengthens my desire to be a calm, loving, and present mother.

I'm itching to make some ice sculptures. I'm pretty certain that Cedar will be enamored with this idea. Maybe it will turn his distaste for winter around :D

We're also bustling around cleaning, making room for new play things and carving out a space in the basement for a play corner that will include a swing and other fun things such as an indoor trampoline.
Overall we had more of a commercial Christmas than usual and I think both Daddy Oak and I missed the homemade objects that normally fill our Christmas morning with joy. This year I tried to make less in attempt to lessen my stress so that I could actually enjoy the holiday. My plan worked, but it also made my heart ache. I think that I may try to pluck off one homemade gift a month this coming year. That way next year we'll have homemade gifts AND I won't be over-stressed rushing to the deadline of Christmas Eve.

I truly hope that your weekend was a happy one! I'm hoping to post again tomorrow on a few things I'm working on for WIP Wednesday, but if I don't I hope you have a blessed, safe, and happy new year!

Friday, December 17, 2010

This Moment

*A single photo depicting a moment from the week. Inspired by Soulemama.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

WIP Wednesday : My heart

Two years. She was the most influential person in my life. I went through denial; for quite a while. I avoided anything about her. Her pictures. Her grave. My family. Memories. Then I pushed away anger, swallowed bitterness; I slowly opened myself up to using things that used to be hers trying not to think that they shouldn't be in my house. And now I'm finally working on acceptance. Wondering when the day will come that I'm not wondering if she heard our favorite polka on Sunday morning, or when writing out cards or invitations when will I stop addressing one for her. It will come. Peace will come. Some day; some day understanding will come.

Until then, I'll smile when Willow talks about Polka Gramma. My heart will both bubble over with joy and sink with lament when I hear a song we both loved. Tomorrow, when I take WIllow to her first band concert, I'll tell her about the woman who put the passion in me, the one who supported me, the one who would drive in a blizzard to see me play.

She is the reason I am me. And I'll never forget that or push it away.

TV free Tuesday!

(Willow at her ballet performace. Not shown in picture is a strung out on candy, over-tired, public place hating Cedar losing it in my left arm while I took the photo with my right hand. This is her, "Cedar, it's ok" face.)

We made it another week!!! Wahoo! Really it is such a relief. This week we've all suffered a little bit of the sniffles so there was a little YouTubing action going on, but over all we survived another week without TV.

Some of what we did this past week:

-Snowflakes. Lots and lots of snowflakes now decorate our windows! Willow wanted to make them to "make snow come for Christmas". . . and it apparently worked. She is pleased with herself. I took a suggestion from Jean and used white coffee filters and am so glad I did. Beautiful results!

-We made a gingerbread house with a Wilton's kit. It took longer than I expected and there was quite a bit of whining from the munchkins about that. . . but it was fun and it's cute. Well, was cute. Yesterday I found Cedar on top of the play fridge eating the candy off of it. Naked.

- Lots of sword play by Cedar. Lots of running and screaming by Willow. And lots of reminding not to hit sister with wooden light saber (*doh! I should have made it out of foam!) and then putting said saber on top of fridge by this mama. I had to get creative; I took some of Daddy's old socks stuffed them with mis-matched socks lost in the basement and secured them with pony tail holders. Wa-lah! Nun chucks safe for chasing sister with!

-A good friend of mine came and spent the night with us. We all had a great time visiting Santa at the mall and eating french fries in the food court.

-I now know the full capabilities of one, just one, felted wool sweater. In one night I made two ugly monsters, one pair of mittens, one hat and one pair of leg warmers. Thank you gorgeously striped gap sweater. My family will be kept warm and have buddies to snuggle with thanks to your sacrifice.

This week we are hading to the kitchen! on the agenda:

- This amazing peppermint bark. I make peppermint bark every year and it barely lasts an evening. I'm estimating a 3 hour lifespan for this batch of Christmas-y sweetness.

-Yet another bark, this one more suited for the adult set. Well, except for Daddy Oak. YUM-O!

- This family should attend Hot Cocoa Addicts Anonymous. We have all mourned the passing of our Cocoamotion. I was over joyed when I stumbled on these last night. I think I'm going to top them with marshmallows from Sara's blog.

*On that topic, please pray for Sara's young daughter. Middle Miss is having some GI issues and is in the process of testing to determine the cause.

Daddy Oak and I are still glad we ditched the TV. We are using the computers a little in the morning while we wake up (Cedar's up at 5:30 everyday,and though I'm a morning person, I'm not that much of a morning person). We also finally broke down and bought a portable DVD player. Before going TV free again we had purchased Willow a DVD for Christmas, we also know my mom got her one, and she will be quite dramatically devastated if she has nothing to watch it on. We also seem to be on the road. A lot. With friends and family all over the state we tend to travel quite a bit. I always said I'd NEVER let my kids watch a movie in the car. Well, now aren't I eating my words. At 20 months Cedar still screams constantly in the car. I'm hoping this eases the hysterics.

I hope you all are having a happy holiday season!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

TV free Tuesday

The past week has been a joy and a challenge, but mostly a joy.

Here's what we've done in the past week to keep us busy and without a need for TV:

~This week we finished our winter wonderland village. I'll show I picture when I remember to take one. Willow enjoyed making it so very much. ~We made the watercolor/coffee filter garland, which was not quite as much of a hit as I thought it would be. I might try it another time.
~Willow and I made pomanders. She thinks they stink.
~Built tents out of afghans and ate p.b. off of spoons (Cedar's favorite treat) while we sat underneath and told stories.
~ We made Hanukkah ornaments for our Christmas tree out of popsicle sticks and lots of glitter and gems.
~We went to the farm after a fun little detour of the county and cut our tree.

~ We decorated our tree as a family and enjoyed lots of yummy hot cocoa.
~ We went to the the Dicken's Christmas parade downtown and enjoyed yummy treats. Willow was sad that we didn't get to see Santa (mama and daddy didn't want to spend time waiting in line in the freezing cold. Let me say that again; FREEZING COLD. I tried to compensate by sending her another video (Grammie had already sent one, thanks Grammie!!). Didn't work. So we may be taking a trip to the mall this weekend so she can see that jolly fellow and tell him ("in person!") her requests.
~We made a wreath out of clippings from our front bush.
~ We have baked pies, cookies, and made lots and lots of snacks.
~We had friends over to play!
~We have read more books than I can count and made a trip to the library this morning for more.
~Trains. TV free time in our house equals more time for track building.
~Blocks. They (Daddy Oak included) have discovered a love for blocks this past week. You'll see more when I post about our Hanukkah holiday.
~Lots and lots of painting. Did I say lots? Reminder: I need to get more watercolor paper.

In general lots of songs were sung, many games were played, toys that hadn't been played with for a while were off the shelves.

This week we have the following planned:

~Letter writing to special friends to share the holiday spirit.
~Practice for dance recital and then. . . RECITAL!
~ Building and decorating a gingerbread house.
~Willow and I are going to sew bean bags together for a stocking stuffer for Cedar while he naps one morning.
~The kids got a new puzzle on the 5th night of Hanukkah and it has been keeping them busy, I've been brainstorming some simple game ideas to go along with it.
~ These are also on the agenda.Willow has been chomping at the bit to get to these. Mama finally remembered to buy candy for them this weekend. If only I would have remembered hooks!
~Daddy's spending time working on a gift for the munchkins. A train table! with storage!!!!! shhhhhhhh! :D
~I'm embroidering the rest of the stockings I have neglected over the last few years and working on some new slippers for Willow.

Overall we are all happier and seem to have more time to do the things that we enjoy without the blue screen flashing us into zombie-dom. I have also significantly reduced the amount of time I have spent online and it has been a breath of fresh air. I wasn't spending a large amount online at one time, but it added up throughout the day of a minute here and a minute there. Lunchtime devotionals have become a regular thing again this week and everyone is rejoicing. I hadn't realized how much we NEEDED that time each day.

I began reading the book Mitten Strings for God by Katrina Kenison. It's a good old fashioned dose of just what I needed. It's speaking to my heart and changing it in ways that I wasn't even aware were in need of improvement. Thank you to Kyrie for her suggestion! It has been reminding me to keep it simple, something I have truly been working on this past year and will be again in the next. Simplify!

Until next time, I hope you are having a happy day!

Sunday, December 5, 2010


(I feel strange putting a large photo of myself at the beginning of my post but hey, it's about me and running, right? forgive the wierd "am I done yet?" look on my face)
Nearly two years ago I began a Couch to 5k running program. At the suggestion of a friend I downloaded a Christian podcast to help me along. I fell in love with the tracks from the very first run and due to both my love for it and my lack of technological intelligence (*er, I didn't know how to change or add new music on to my mp3 player, I still don't) that one podcast remained my running music 3-5 times a week for the last 20 months. Since it was meant for 5k trainers it only ran 25 minutes, so on long runs I'd repeat it once or twice. It was my heartbeat while running. The words were a meditation to my heart and soul and were as beneficial as the pounding of my feet on the pavement or trail. Near the middle and end of my long runs "Run" by After the Chase would play. It not only gave me enough oomph to finish my run strong it gave me the strength and focus I needed for the day.
Running was more than exercise for me: it was time spent preparing my temple, connecting with the one I loved, and a time to clear my head of all worldly things and fill them with only that that truly mattered. Running has a way of giving you a different perception of the world and the situations you are in. In so many ways running made me a better mother, a better wife and a better follower.

On Halloween I ran a chilly 5k with some old friends. During the few weeks prior my right foot was giving me some problems. I ran through it because I #1 am stupid when it comes to any thing physical in the sense that I tend to push myself too hard. and #2 wanted more than anything to share a run with some friends that I don't often get to see let alone run with. Approaching the second mile it hit. hard. Wincing I slowed my pace to a jog and then paced down to a walk. I wallowed in self pity as I watched my friends and others pass me. As I walked I was hoping to catch a glimpse of my family to cheer me on, but I got better than that. They got lost and parked in the 'wrong place' which just happened to be the right place for me. Willow came running out, "I'm your cheerleader mama!!!!!". I smiled and began running again.

As a mother you are the one who meets the needs. But on certain occasions you switch roles. She fills me up in so many ways and I needed her right then. I turned around and shouted "wanna be my running partner?!" She squealed as she ran to me. Holding hand we ran the last mile and a half together. It was the best finish I could have ever asked for.

I couldn't walk for the two days after and now nearly five weeks later I am still not able to run thanks to a stress fracture. I miss it. I think about it every day. I wallow a bit when I hear about friend's races and training schedules.

Everyone knows that I hold dear the saying "everything happens for a reason". As much as I don't want to hear that right now I'm trying to pay attention to the Still Small Voice. I know He has a plan. So in these shortened cold days I'm going to try to see the reason by focusing on healing, spiritually, emotionally and physically. And on the reason for this season and on the ones that make me want to run in the first place. I'll prop my feet up and read the munchkins some Christmas stories until I can do this again.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Deck the Halls

I have a thing for garlands and buntings. And they are haunting me. Haunting me I tell ya.Everywhere I look I find another amazing tutorial for yet another freaking adorable garland. If only I could find the time. I'm thinking real hard about squeezing a few of these into my handwork time:
First up. Can I say "wow". I mean. WOW! Be still my pom pom loving heart. oh! and another one!

Since my heart has a soft spot for all things felt I'm eyeing this. and this. oh and thinking about making this by the sensational Angry Chicken out of felt because why use plain old white cardstock if you can use felt!

One for this kids to get into the spirit with. I love her simple children's childrens ideas and so do the munchins. This is def. on the to do list for the weekend.

I love garlands and buntings AND advent calenders so much two years ago (with the help of a wee little Willow) I combined my love for them into this :

Well, gotta go on a hunt for more time to make these to 'deck our halls'! What are you 'decking' yours with?

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

WIP Wednesday

We've been hard at work on so many wonderful, jolly, and dare I say kitchy projects/gifts this past week. Here are just a few of what we've been putting our hands, hearts, and deep thoughts to:

A winter wonderland village inspired by this at The Long Thread.

A few more handmade Hanukkah decorations. We spent the afternoon listening to a rocking Pandora Hanukkah station gluing strips of blue and yellow paper together to make this:

This was Willow's independently made decoration for our holiday:

Cedar just ate glue.
I'll be back tomorrow to fill you in on what's been helping us making it through the TV free transition (aside from Grace. Lots. And lots of Grace).
I hope your hands are happy at work on something while celebrating the holidays!

Read. Read. Read. Oh yeah, and read.

We are reading more theses days. Yes. I said MORE. How can that be you ask? Well without the tv enticing my little ones they are enjoying the previously often ignored baskets of books laying around our home. We have always been lovers of the written word but are endulding in it a bit more during our days. I thought I'd share some of our recent favorites:

This is Willow's current fave. Rave reviews from the Hart household. It includes fun watermark-ish (aren't I well articulated this evening?) golden snails hidden throughout. Once you find them all you can log into a website and unlock a game! Oh my! She LOVES this book.

Next up, our beloved Ollie's Ski Trip by Elsa Beskow

Willow and I enjoy this tale every winter. She loves the character of Jack Frost and immitates skiing along a snowy moor over and over after we put it down. It's a classic. Get it. Read it. Love it.

We also LOVE OLIVIA helps with Christmas by Ian Falconer.

We are all thoroughly enjoying this new pick from a recent trip to the library. I've harbored a secret love of Olivia for a while but munchkin and monster are just jumping on the band wagon. Even Daddy Oak cracks everyone up when he does an impression of Olivia singing


Little Pea by Amy Krause Rosenthal

Another fun read that we've had since Willow was a toddler that Cedar is now enjoying. It's a tale about a little pea and his parents. He has to eat candy for dinner every night, "candy, candy, candy!". He scarfs down his candy counting along the way until he gets to his dessert. Everyone will be yelling "spinach!!!".

Well, off to snuggle on the couch with an old afghan, some peppermint coffee (hot cocoa for the munchkins) and another wonderful book, Christmas in Noisy Village by Astrid Lindgren, another of our very favorite authors. Maybe I'll share more about that another time!

Happy reading!

TV free Tuesdays!

When we were engaged my boss at the time gave us one piece of advice and it was to "have no TV for the first year of marriage, it'll set you up for success by giving yourselves more time to get to know each other than some characters in a sitcom". We prayed over his wise advice and decided it was best for us. We kept my 13 inch TV/VCR combo for movie nights, but opted out of cable TV. I have to say that between that decision and the support we received from our friends at our Bible Study, we made it through. By the skin of our teeth, but we did it.

By the time our 1 yr. anniversary came around we welcomed a screaming (*ahem* precious) Willow into the world. Tension ran long but money was short. We moved about a bazillion times during which we continued to use our loyal 13 inch TV for occasional movie nights. We finally settled into a spacious 350 sq. ft. apartment. As a means to escape the reality of a year and a half old child who never slept and a whole lot-a family drama, we gave in to the free cable.

Long story short my dreams of having a child who had no idea who Dora was quickly turned to dust as Willow stomped on it with her Strawberry Shortcake shoes while singing "Yo Gabba Gabba!". One day I hit a breaking point, almost literally beat the TV up with a bat, decided to throw it in the closet instead and lived a blissful TV free life. . .. until Cedar was born.

We made it almost two months after his birth until we brought it out and dusted it off. I was overwhelmed with an almost 3 year old with some sensory needs, a newborn with colic that never ended and a whole lot of post partum yucky-ness. And, well, it helped.

A year and a half and another child screaming "Dora" and chasing after a girl with short hair later, I was officially done. Granted, they still didn't sit in front of it all day and we didn't have cable, but I was looking around at my children, children who God created with amazing imaginations sitting around staring at a blue flashing screen. I couldn't help but feel responsible. Of course I was responsible. I am supposed to be the steward of these children at home while they are here with me on Earth and I was not doing them any service by allowing Dora to babysit them so I could read a few blog posts or knit a few rows.

I cannot stand TV as background noise. Sensoraly (is that even a word?) for me I can't think when it's on. I hate what it turns my children into. I hate that it becomes an easy out so that I can have a minute for myself. Shouldn't I lean on Jesus, not the Super Hero Squad?

Daddy Oak and I talked. We agreed it was best. So the first Sunday of Advent I hauled it to the basement with Willow literally holding onto my feet and Cedar pulling on my shirt. It's gone. For good. I listed it on Craigslist.

Three days later and they are back to showing me pictures they took on their digital camera (a wooden block) and defeating monsters in the mirror. They haven't asked for it once! And I am happy.

(and so are they)

I bring all of this up for a point. I promise! From now on on Tuesdays I will be posting what we have done in the past week without the need of a TV, share some ideas for what I have planned for the following week and will share some general thoughts on how I feel we are doing since going back to TV free. Feel free to join in and share your thoughts and ideas, links, and even gripes!

Have a happy day!

Monday, November 22, 2010

New Duds

Cedar has a crazy teeny tiny little waste but a huge 'ol rear end due to his cloth diapers. It's nearly impossible to find pants to fit him. Which turned out to make this mama very happy because what else are you going to make for a boy? I spent so much time sewing Willow birthday and easter dresses, everyday dresses and skirts and the occasionally dolly accessory. I lamented over one thing and one thing only when we found out we were having a boy: no more itty bitty made-by-mama dresses *tear*. But enter tiny but Cedar and we're in business! Pants!

In the past I've just traced some of his old pants and wha-lah! Wait. Too small, need room for the. . . . big butt! Surprisingly enough, I used the Big Butt Baby Pants pattern by Rae at Made By Rae. It was super easy to follow and contrary to what Daddy Oak thinks, they do NOT look like clown pants. Thank you very much.

Next I made a shirt to match out of one of my old shirts and a way too small t-shirt. I used Dana's tutorial and think I started an addiction. I sewed the envelope part a little too tight, so I need to cool it next time.

Now to tear apart more curtains and t-shirts! and to give that boy a haircut!

The Dance

*gotta love a farm girl dancing with a goat!*

Oh Garth Brooks, you used to light up my heart like the combined flames of a campground full of fires. *rolling eyes and laughing* I did love that song though. . . on to the real reason for today's post:

Dancing. I love to dance. Willow LIVES to dance. Daddy Oak doesn't dance. And Cedar, well, he dances like a superhero. Rock it little man. Rock it.

I am currently near obsession with the idea of organizing a flash mob. Watching Modern Family's last episode didn't help any. In college before I even knew what a flash mob was, a few friends and I thought it would be awesome to walk in front of Warriner Mall, drop our back packs and start singing and dancing. How awesome would that be?

I've been thinking about dancing as a metaphorical term lately. The seasons and how they dance, trees swaying in the wind, the balance of relationships, the limbo between being eco-friendly one day and wanting to eat a cheeseburger from Mickey D's the next.

According to the dictionary "to dance" is to 'move rhythmically'. Rhythm is key. The breathing in and breathing out of a day, the ups and downs of life's adventures. Two other def. were also offered:
-To perform- isn't that true? some days I feel like all I'm doing is performing for someone else.
-To skip or leap as in joy - oh how I loved this one! Psalm 149:3 says, "Let them praise his name with dancing and make music to him with tambourine and harp".

I want to set my life to a Godly rhythm, the only one I want to perform for is Him, and joy, oh joy! I have it all in Him. I want to embrace the up and downs of life, being swayed by the winds of life, all of it by dancing! So get up! Make a joyful noise! and DANCE!

I LOVE this. LOVE it.

I also want to share an awesome blog I've found. I love what she's doing and wish my excitement about it would spread like wildfire to the rest of the family.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Friends in High places

I've wandered through life for years praying for friends. Real friends. People who you know have your back and don't care about your ugly stuff. Not just any friends. No, Mister. I was on the hunt for THE ONE. I have a long history of desiring a best friend; coveting the relationships I see others having. Stemming from first grade when my then best friend, Jolene, moved away it's been a hole in my heart that no one had yet to fill. I wanted someone who not only shared similar interests but who Daddy Oak joked was my "chick soul mate".I wanted what I saw my grandma having. Friends that she knew before kids, friends that raised their kids together, went on fun weekends away together, were there for each other through losses and divorces and in their 60's were still baking cookies and getting together on Sunday mornings after church for donuts. I wanted more than anything to find (rather to see God put together a real life "operation-friend-drop") one(or more) who I will sit over coffee with 50 years from now remembering when we weren't so wrinkled or drinking so much prune juice. Several times I've convinced myself out of desparation that this one's the one. This is. The. One. Only to have my heart ripped out a la some alien sci-fi movie.

No more! I declared. No more will I open my heart to have it so viciously (showing just a *little* of my flair for the dramatic here) ripped out. So I rolled a stone in front of it and became a cynic of friendship for over a year and a half. Done. Done I say!

But as we all know God is so funny. Ha. Ha. and here I am again. But not. My heart has recovered and through His Grace has found a new stance on friendship. I will never find The One. Because He was there all along. I was desparately searching and begging for something that only He can provide. He humored me. Loved me and brought me through the pit of despair I put myself in due to my impossible standards and state of oblivion. He is my One. He is the only one that will probably care about what I'm doing fifty years from now. He is the only one who will never shy away from my ugly stuff. He knows my ugly stuff. He LOVES my ugly stuff.

And you know what. . . through this realization He has also put many amazing people in my life. So today after an encounter yesterday with someone who two years ago I would have proclaimed as "The One", and after a night out with two friends who I will probably still be staying up late talking into the wee hours when we are in our 60's, and an instance of realizing the love of a mentor who has come into my life right at the right time: I know that I have Him and I am thankful for His love for me and His perect timing. And above all I know that He is My One. My One.

Saturday, November 13, 2010


On a happier note here's some eye (ear! and mouth! oh my!) candy for your weekend enjoyment.

- I cannot get over how moved I am by this piece.

- I have been drooling over their work for some time. I LOVE everything in their portfolio. Wouldn't one of the kids look great in my living room ;D

- This is on my current to-make-for-Christmas llist. EEEK!! Only 41 more days!

- Reminds me of a certain someone. If I ever do learn how to play the piano, this is the first song I want to learn to play.

-Thanks to Dana all I can think about is pumpkin pancakes! With lemon cream!

-And this is for my sister. I spent way too much time online this morning looking for a video from this. Fun flashback :D

Have a happy weekend! I get to enjoy it with Daddy Oak who was granted a three day weekend thanks to St. Anter's Day. Whoo hoo!!!

That Fast

She lifted her hands up shouting for joy over going to the "smell good store" (candle shoppe). I bent down to secure Cedar in the stroller. When I looked back up I saw it coming and began to shout a shout that all at once embodied the roar of a bear and the scream of a baby. He braked. She ran to me. I cried. Cedar was still asleep.

Time is measurable. They say. But those split seconds seem to last forever in my memory maybe because I came 'this close' to losing her 'that fast'.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Munchkin, Monster, and I have been doing many projects lately. Dirtying our hands in everything from plaster of paris to hot pink acrylic paint and laundry soap. More to come on that later. But just like the autumn leaves, too many thoughts to count have been swirling around in my head.

I haven't written here for a while. . . ok. . . a looong while. This hiatis was the result of a personal blogging crisis. Don't be alarmed, no straight-jackets were involved. But I did find myself wanting to be who I am not. And that is not something the real me who was lost in the blogging thought craziness is ok with. I found myself wanting to fit in some niche of the blogging world. Montessori. Not really. Waldorf. . . um. . . not quite (my kids do love their Dora). Ok, well then I'm a Waldorf and Montessori inspired wannabe unschooling mom who likes to craft. Actually pretty true, but is that all I want to blog about?. A frugal family trying to live a self sustained life (picturing Daddy Oak in overalls with a pitchfork in hand). Definitely not. A wanna be minimalist.. . . maybe mama, but if I let Willow take over this house anymore than I already do American Pickers would be knocking on our door. A. . . . you get the picture.

At the end of my 6 month long personal blogging crisis (during which I'm certain thoughts of committing me were entertained by a certain someone) I came up with this conclusion:

I am not going to change your life with my insightful words of wisdom. I am not going to blow your mind away with my amazing crafting/sewing skills. You won't find breathtakingly creative photos or clearly thought out deep posts on this here page. However what you will find is just me. I'm not an expert by any means in anything. I am definitely not one of those people who "has it all together" and who will be wealth of knowledge for you in your quest for the same. In real life nor in that of the cyberworld am I a well-articulated person. I haven't ever done anything super exciting that will make you envy me and follow my blog in order to remind yourself of who you wish you could be like. But by golly I love my ordinary life and that's enough for me. So if ordinary strikes your fancy, hold on to your skibbies and be sure to tune in because that is just what you'll find.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Is it really that simple? All week I've been feeling like I could pull my hair out. The kids are beating each other with sticks, my head feels like it's going to explode, and we feel so. . . distant. This isn't a normal feeling that I have towards my relationship with the kids. This morning as I stood amidst the chaos in a pile of raisins on the kitchen floor (Willow's "seeds", apparently I have a future member of FFA on my hands) holding a child covered in his own poop that my one clean shirt was now also smeared with (it's all in the details, right?, I wanted to run away. But where? I took a step back and knew exactly where I was going to run, a place I have been running away from lately, because "I could do it all myself". As seen by the evidence before me I realized that what I was telling myself was a lie and I needed Him. I asked the kids for forgiveness, said a prayer for peace and patience, and turned up some worship music (well, after cleaning up the poopy child and changing my shirt). If a random stranger stopped by our house and peaked through the window 10 minutes later he would have seen us. Us. Crazy, dancing up and down, hollering, laughing, happy lovers of Jesus.

A clean house won't make my life better. Obedient and cultured children won't make my life better. Unless I have Jesus. It's that simple.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Link Love

I have had a crazy busy week packed with tons of fun. Hopefully this weekend I'll get a chance to post some pics and a narrative of our recent adventures. But for now I'll share some things that are interesting and inspiring. Have a lovely weekend, soak it up!

- Cannot stop listening to this song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skUJ-B6oVDQ Have always loved Coldplay even through the years when I was so very confused by the lyric "should I blow off my head", haha, to later come to the realization that he was actually saying "shoot an apple off my head". Hearing aids may be in my future.

-This family http://www.familyonbikes.org/ I so badly want to sell everything and jump on a bike and hit the road with my family. Daddy Oak isn't feeling it so much, he'd much rather jump onto the couch and watch yet another Arnold movie.

-I haven't broadcasted it, but I've been dabbling in the raw diet for the last two weeks. I'm on a quest to try and heal some health issues I have. I am glad to say I am feeling great but constantly crave donuts. Not just a donut, but a cherry and cream cheese danish pastry. It's all I fantasize about. Really. Currently loving this yummy flat bread http://www.rawmazing.com/recipes/raw-food-recipe-tomato-flat-bread/ especially when smothered in the green deliciousness of an organic avocado, slices of cool cukes, and some Willow made alfalfa sprouts. Pair that with some mama-made kombucha and a powerbar (http://www.elanaspantry.com/power-bars/), you've got a winner and the formula for a meal that's been pretty much sustaining me and filling me with joy!

-Other than fantasizing about donuts I spend my *free time* dreaming about making Willow and Cedar some new duds from these patterns http://www.oliverands.com/ with some of her fabulous material http://heatherross.squarespace.com/

-I am so doing this someday http://www.thekitchn.com/thekitchn/kitchen-hardware/kitchen-lighting-made-from-weck-canning-jars-113779 I have been fairly enamored with the idea of using mason jars for kitchen lights for a while, but this just knocks my socks off. Love. It.

Apparently that's all Cedar thinks I should post since he's doing the most pathetic (and adorable) cry for mama loving right now. Have a wonderful and blessed weekend!