Sunday, April 1, 2012

Explorers Extraordinaire!

We spent the beautiful day outside, like everyone else in the Midwest, with 85 degree temps on April 1st.  My little girl loves her Fancy Nancy books.  I don't get excited about the girly stuff, but Fancy Nancy is cute. Harper loves all the french terms and big words and shares Nancy's love for all things purple.  The kids spent the morning being Explorers Extraordinaire in the backyard.  They had so much fun.  (And no worries, Elliot spent all afternoon at the skatepark with a bunch of boys!  He just does this sweet stuff for his sister.)

 Showing off the book, we had to get the details right!

 Loving her pink fort!

 Notebook. check. Purple marker. check. Sack. check. Binoculars. check. Maracas. check.

 Suiting up for the exploration.

 I asked if he was a bird-watcher.

 He said he was a "Mommy-watcher."

 Collecting specimens. 

 2 caterpillars on our rope swing.

 E had his boy fun, too. 

 Looking serious!

Some of our nature collections. Purple flowers, of course!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Baby Ruby's Quilt

Why, oh, why don't I sew more often? Oh, wait.  That darn husband and kids.  And cooking, and cleaning and laundry.  All those reasons.  Oh, well. 

Just finished up a baby quilt for a new little cousin of ours to be born in June.  Currently named "Ruby" till her parents agree on something else.  It is really a blessing to give these to family and friends.  It does my heart good to know that it means so much to them.  I pretty much fell in love with this fabric the second I saw it.  The colors and the adorable images for the girl reading and the kids playing Ring Around the Rosy pretty much sealed it.  I didn't realize how cute it was till I got the set of Fat Quarters home. 

The sewing specifics: a Turning Twenty pattern using a fat quarter set of Little Apples by Aneela Hoey for Moda Fabrics.  I purchased the fabric at, which is a fantastic little fabric/sewing shop in Webster Groves.  I have been to a "gazillion" fabric shops with my Mom, all over the place, and I can honestly say that this is my favorite.  Modern, inspiring, well organized and thoughtfully presented.  They don't have the most fabric to pick from, but you will find something you love here. 

So here it is. 

Up Close of the adorable prints

9 Blocks of Turning Twenty

Friday, March 16, 2012

30 Day Pinterest Challenge: Day 5

Today was our first day of Spring Break, so we had all day to embark on some kind of activity.  We ended up having a ton of fun, in unexpected ways. 

Our Pinterest inspired activity was a Scavenger Hunt.

This actually prints off and can be cut into 4 seperate cards.  That came in handy because the first two got very wet and we we circled the dry ones in the car.

We did most of our Scavenger Hunt in Forest Park because we went to the History Museum for storytime.  Harper decided the storytime looked like it was "for babies" and it was a little cramped so we bought tickets for Mammoths and Mastadons (which was AWESOME!) and is free on Tuesday afternoons. Go! We had a great time learning about that, then headed back out into the rain. 

We found everything except a squirrel and a broom.  We substituted a worm that we found for the bug, because finding a worm is SO MUCH COOLER!  The worm is the STAR in many of our pictures below. 

 I don't know why Elliot is always scrunching up his face and giving me the "Ole one eye" but he has been doing it since birth. Hmmm...

Showing off his rainy day find.

Filling out her Scavenger Hunt. She is left handed.

Filling out his Scavenger Hunt.  He is NOT left handed, but he wasn't putting down his worm.

Our friend, the worm.

Showing off the Mario and Hello Kitty key chains they got at some comic book store in the Loop.  A good use of the quarters they brought with them. 

Between the terrible storytime, the rain and the last minute decision to go to the Loop (Delmar) and have a Fitz's rootbeer and get rained on some more, it was a pretty normal parenting day.  You just have to roll with it, even when things don't go as planned.  We ended up finding a great little toy store where I was able to get a set of blocks which includes the Alphabet in a traditional sense and Braille, which made it a perfect birthday gift for a visually impaired baby we know that just had his first birthday.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

30 Day Pinterest Challenge: Day 3 & 4

Day 3: Salmon w/Pomegranate and Fennel Salsa

Day 4: I Spy Quilt progress

I have been wanting to make an "I Spy" quilt for a long time. I finally got around to stealing bunches of my mom's fabric and cutting 5" squares out.  Now I have lots of novelty fabrics to make quilts for my friends. I found a few I Spy quilts on Pinterest and decided I liked this style, with a little "frame" around each block the best.  I am happy that I purchased a bunch of denim fabric for another thing, because I think it makes the perfect border for this kid quilt.

My vision is this becomes a favorite blanket to play on or take to the park.  When the quilt is finished, the family will be able to play two games with the quilt.  1) " I Spy with my little eye: a sunflower" and then the kids can find those on their blanket.  2) Matching, as there will be 2 owls on each quilt.  Somebody can point at one owl and somebody can find the other. 

Some of my favorite moments as a mom have been spent on a blanket outside on a nice day.  My kids are already too big to spend very long on a blanket now. And it has to be a much bigger blanket. :)  Time to make new memories of fun things to do together, but those times as babies crawling around were super sweet. 

My kids have fun helping me pick out the fabrics for my sewing projects and arranging the squares out on the floor.  E doesn't have as much patience as H does, but he likes it for a few minutes at a time.  You can learn a lot about colors and patterns.  But, the most important thing is they know how happy someone is to get something homemade. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

30 Day Pinterest Challenge: Day 2

Our activity for the day was to play a game that went along with a book we have all ready been reading this March, Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato.  We had a bunch of fun and were impressed with how well Elliot did, even on the tough questions! Love that kid.  The leprechaun masks came from their morning at the Craft Caboose.  Elliot looks like a tipsy leprechaun and I look like a very tired leprechaun in these pictures, but it was a beautiful 70 degree afternoon in our backyard.

Monday, March 12, 2012

30 Day Pinterest Challenge: Day 1

Oh, it has been so long since I blogged about family and the kids.  I have been really busy getting my cooking/paleo/recipe improved.  Check it out at  It is much nicer and well organized than it used to be. 

It is kind of a running joke with all husbands and boyfriends these days about Pinterest and how much the ladies are using it.  It is a well deserved joke.  I try to limit myself to 5-10 minutes a day.  It is so useful, though. Cooking, sewing, home decorating and kids ideas abound.  However, probably more time is spent accumulating ideas than actually doing them.  So, I embark on my 30 Day Pinterest Challenge.

My Crossfit & paleo friends get really geeked out about their 30 day challenges.  We are getting ready to start another one soon.  They do serve their purpose though, breaking bad routines or refocusing on something that has gone to the wayside.  So, for 30 days I am going to DO something inspired by my Pinterest boards everyday (and briefly blog about them.)  Special emphasis on stuff involving the kids, although I am sure a few dinner ideas or something will have to qualify as life tends to get crazy. 

Today's activity:

Vinegar and Baking Soda Science Fun!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Wrapping Paper

   The kids and I are embarking on a very serious task for Christmas. Homemade wrapping paper. It's a pretty awesome concept, right?  I hate spending money on something that gets thrown away immediately.  I am constantly recycling gift bags for birthdays and such, but I like for Christmas gifts to be wrapped. Weird.  Also, I had a ton of paper grocery sacks that were piling up and I HATE TO SHOP.  I bought all of our gifts on Amazon in 8 minutes.  Then they were delivered to our house in 3 days.  I picked up some tape at Walgreens and we are all set! 

  The process goes a little like this.  First, make hot chocolate.

Then get out paints, cookie cutters, markers, etc...

And ignore the messiness that is my basement. I just had it finished and moved my craft/sewing stuff yesterday.  It is still a disaster.

Dip and stamp away!

Proud moment: My Kindergartener wrote out "stocking" and "Merry Christmas" by sounding it out all on her own.  I mean it doesn't look anything like "stocking" or "Merry Christmas" but that is still some amazing emerging literacy skills! BTW, if your Kindergartener can do better, don't burst my bubble. :)

My Snowmen handi work.

H's Christmas trees, decorated.  I liked the way she put a print in them.

Jingle Bells

 E and I practiced printing the trees evenly

 H's favorite ---I traced the Gingerbread Boy and Girl stencils. She got busy decorating them.  She is working on another set as I type.


Finished product
(You can't see it from this picture, but H wrote "HO HO HO" on the package.  I thought that was pretty great as I didn't tell her to write any words on anything.  She was so proud of herself that she wrote "HO HO HO" correctly.  "I can't believe I can write HO!" she said.  Giggles.)