Friday, March 21, 2014

Spring is Here!!!

Today is the first day of spring.  It started with snow.  Just a a bit, enough to catch us off guard and check the weather to make sure the sun would warm it away soon enough.
We were safe.  After a cloudy rainy day yesterday today's sky boasts puffy clouds and brilliant blue.  Whether we'll get more snow or freezing temps I don't know, but I do know spring is here today.  I'll take it.

Yesterday was an odd day. Ainsley had a much anticipated playdate with a new friend from school and it went so well.  It's been a while since we've had a little friend over without their parents and I was a bit weary of how that long afternoon was going to fill itself well.  I think sometimes I forget what a big girl Ainsley is now.  They all three (Louise too) played so well.  After asking after the knitting I was working on I taught Ainsley's friends to finger knit and we all sat cross legged on the floor knitting and chatting and embroidering for over an hour.  The girls played Guess Who (Vaagenes family style) all by themselves, then we ate popcorn and made tiny birds and nests and glitter paintings.  It was delightful.

Then the little friend headed home and a bad headache sunk in for me and I looked around my messy overwintered house and I felt defeat.  It was just one of those evenings.  I took a bath in lieu of eating with the family and after the kids were tucked in Ian poured us each a drink and we talked, a lot.

On the other side now I feel calm and hope and perseverance.  Life is really hard right now, in some ways, in others it's ridiculously good and easy.  I'm doing my best to focus on those last bits.  Yesterday it got the better of me, but today, this first day of spring?  It's washed it (mostly) away.

Ainsley's new killer backpack (can I have one?)

And now it's Friday.  Three whole days have passed where it's been warm enough to be out every afternoon.  Today we needed mere fleeces and the sun warmed our faces.  Bedtime is easier with tired fresh aired bodies, life is a bit easier.  Ah.  I've missed spring.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Monday Monday

I have to leave to pick the girls up from school in 6 minutes.  I'm learning to take my tiny time windows when I have them.  6 minutes it is!

This past weekend was, unique.  I find weekend to either be STELLAR! ACTIVE! AMAZING! or almost depressing (too much expectation, too little done).  This weakend was somewhere in the middle, and you know what?  I kind of liked that.  We all really needed that.

We've all had colds.  We made it all winter and now we're all sniffly and soar throats around here.  Poir Felix has it the worst.  His tiny nose has dripped so much it's hard to imagine where it's all coming from.  So we stayed mostly in, enjoyed the nice(r) weather on Saturday and hunkered a bit more yesterday with the freeze.

The highlight for me was a mommy daughter date with Ainsley on Saturday.  I'm stretched so thin during the week between housework and my three little people that I love getting one on one time on the weekends (plus she and Louise NEEDED a break from each other, it was getting dire in here).

We walked hand in hand up to our little strip of shops just 4 blocks away.  We chatted the whole time, drinking in the sun and the near spring warmth.  We peered into windows and Ainsley picked the Women's shop to go in (all handmade housewares and toys).  She beelined for the 16"doll clothes (I swear we'd never been there before, how did she know?)  You could tell she has a mama who makes things, marveling over fabric choices and embellishments.  She talked me into a BRIGHT SHINY pink dress for Molly and used her saved allowance to buy a knit Minion hat as well.  The ladies were so sweet there.  Doting on my sweet big girl.

We did a few more errands and walked home with a bulging bag of weekend groceries and goodies from the bakery (green bread! eclairs!).  We made it home just in time for lunch.  It was the perfect morning.

Yesterday I felt a bit worse.  I took the day off from exercise and pretty much lazed around.  My Felix boy is so needy with his cold Ian took over so I could rest a bit.  I'm so thankful for that.

Today has been the perfect Monday so far.  I always love having fresh groceries in the house and things checked off my list of to dos.  Just one more week until we're Florida bound!  I can hardly wait.  Until then the girls have school.  A week of walking outdoors and health lessons for Ainsley, and Irish jigging for Louise ( I love the little hints I get about their days at school).

A few photos from the end of last week

Fairy Homes waiting for the fairies to come home after the thaw...

  My favorite color combo right now, and a boy who is desperately sad his grapefruit is all gone (yes, he ate that whole thing with me)

Sun and above freezing temps!!! Our first trip back to the arboretum this year

My big girls playing in the snow in the backyard ALONE before daddy gets home from work..we're all growing so much.

 Happy Monday friends!

Monday, March 10, 2014


We had a good full weekend.  A jumble of outings and activities.  The time always goes so fast, there's never enough of it.

Last week Ainsley let me put her hair up for school and dress in a cute little corduroy jumper and blouse.  I had to snap a photo. That girl, she's too much for words some days.  Her new thing is slipping letters under her door to us when she's supposed to be sleeping.  This was an I'm sorry note for not going to bed well.  IT's hard to stay mad at her for long.  Those notes, those EYES!!!!  Ah, she's got me.

Ian picked up my 30th birthday ring on Saturday.  The design turned out so beautifully, I love it so much.  The perfect sparkly every day mama ring.  Every time I look at it I think about all those great 3s in my life.  What a special gift.

I'm trying to get our house in order.  These spare warm days have my spring cleaning bug itching.  Our wooden floors have been bugging me all winter.  They are looking so worn and dull and truthfully could use a good refinishing, but that's not in the budget.  I've heard good things about Bona floor polish and thought I'd give it a go.  The two areas I've done look awesome.  It fills in some of the smaller scratches, puts a new protective coat on the wood.  The real test will be our dining room floor.  That's definitely seen better days.

No hard work for me today though. I went to bed with a bad sore throat and woke up no better.  No fever, not even a runny nose, just an aching head and sore throat.  So I'm taking the day off from my hard exercise I've been doing.  I took a good run yesterday and am more sore from that than from my two weeks of workout tapes.

Monday's are grocery days for Felix and I.  We drop the girls off and hop over to Trader Joe's.  I've been buying fresh flowers every week and the ones I found this week are my favorites.  They really feel like I could have just walked outside and plucked them right up (if there was any green out there to pluck).  I love a good full fridge on a Monday, and a fresh bouquet of flowers, such piece of mind for me.
(Menu for those who care, wild rice casserole and pumpkin bread, baked franks and beans, fish and chips, zucchini and ground beef stew from my favorite italian cookbook, potstickers and green beans, baked havarti and turkey sandwiches with tomato soup, spinach and cheese quiche)

The beginning of March has found me in a flurry of projects.  I'm so excited about them all I'm having trouble focusing on what needs to get done first.  Right now I'm flitting between a new cardigan for Felix and the finishing touches on a knitted dress for Louise (she loves it so much she already slept in it once, live stitches on waste yarn and all).  I'm most excited right now about a gift for a little niece of mine.  I had one small thing I found for her months ago, a thing that's exciting for me but perhaps not so much for her.  But this gift?  I'm hoping will be VERY exciting for a little one.  The girls are so smitten I'm already trying to find time to make them their own in time for Easter.  We'll see.

Then there's the sewing (new pants and shirts for my growing boy, birthday presents galore, spring dresses and skirts, always always), new baby knitting (a new little niece arrives next month!). never ending house projects and not so fun adult things to do (ah tax prep and car troubles and millions of 100 year old home odds and ends).  It's enough to make my brain buzz.

I'm learning a bit every day.  I make sure to find a time to just sit quietly, like right now.  No TV or music even, just the quiet house and a simple project, a cup of coffee and silence.  There may not be enough hours in the day, but there surely are plenty of moments like these.

Thursday, March 6, 2014


Today it's snowing, again.  After the last few relatively snowless winters and my desperation for a "real" winter this year, I never thought I'd admit it, I'm over it.  These past days have been tough.  All my zeal for cute outwear and creative indoor activities has been tapped, I'm running on empty, absolutely nothing left.

Yesterday Ainsley and I had a moment.  She was in one of her moods, I was in one of mine.  I snapped, she cried, we hugged and reenacted how the moment could have gone differently, we talkd about it lots.  Today we walked into preschool and she went right to her teachers to ask if she could help make a new name tag for a boy in the class who's name tag had been torn in half by one of her teachers who apparently also had a moment yesteryda.  Oh man, that made me feel better.  If a 30 year veteran teacher can lose her cool a relatelivly new mama to three can, right?

This time of year is so hard anyways.  We all just want to get out.  Find that new great spring groove where parks and biking and easy outdoor play is a major part of the equation.  We're stir crazy and sun deprived and its' so so hard.  For us it's even harder this year.  We're still unable to plan more than a few weeks into the future, questions about kindergarten remain unanswered.

I'm trying my darndest to focus on all of the good.  The excitement of all the possibilities in front of us, the new groove I've found with working out (and how amazing it's making me feel), my beautiful innocent children who love the snow just as much today as they did in November, my husband who is willing to do just about anything to help, as always, despite a job that takes every ounce of him.  I'm a lucky lady.

So today I'm tying to take a page out of their book.  Marvel at the beautiful white that's STILL falling down.  Dust off some old tricks and be in the moment with these three little people who are growing and changing so fast.  Felix is pushing things around walking, Ainsley is reading in earnest (and flying through every math problem I can think to give her), Louise has a terrible runny nose but is still so smiley and willing.  I love my little people.

The girls make "baby jungles" for Felix all the time, they even have a song they sing while they're making them..

New sewing in the works for my little man

lots of iced mint tea these days

the play pen is the new favorite place for everyone

pre bedtime dress up (preciously both girls had babushka style scarves tied around their heads, I'm sorry I missed that one!)

playing with auntie jooj's old contacts (what an awesome aunt to send them all the way from Boston)

Packsi Day!

Ainsley's new sweater, lying all over the house, all the time

cut out shape art

late afternoon face painting


Beach Baby


And now a day later the sun is shining, lots of fun plans have been made, the week is nearly done.  Life feels a bit easier, at least for the moment.