Thursday, October 25, 2007

Robot 1-E is ready to launch

I whipped up this adorable creature in two nights this week. I call him robot 1-E because he's my first robot, and he's for Edmund, who shares my birthday. I plan to make quite a few of these in the future, including one for Andrew, who loves this one, and one for myself named Doris, who will preside over either my kitchen or my sewing corner.

He was really fun, and made me realize the value of having a fabric stash. Most of the fabric I have on hand is already designated for some quilt or project I'm thinking of. This makes it hard to put together little things like this when I want to, becuase my fabric choices are somewhat limited. But if I had more of a stash, just a bunch or random fabrics I thought were cool and cute, I could pull two or three that I liked for robots or stuffed toys or bags or baby balls or whatever whenever I felt the need to make some. Not that I'm saying I don't have a lot of fabric, I just also have a lot of ideas.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

I don't know if you've noticed, but I've been trying to go through and label my posts. I think I'm done now, because some of the remaining ones either defy description or are not really important, and also because I'm tired of it now. If you look to your left you will find that many of my posts are about children, while I also apparently do many things I consider to be adventures and spend a lot of time talking about the weather. I was impressed with myself because I had to add a category for "thoughts". I apparently do have a few these days. I was surprised at how many "adventures" I have had, but considering my definition of adventure as anything that is unusual or that doesn't exactly go as planned, that category should really encompass most of my life. I also realized that having lots of posts about the weather just showed that I am a typical Canadian, while the fact that I even have a label for "hair" shows that I am a typical woman.


I love having visitors. ANY of you can come and stay at my house any time you want. It gets pretty boring around here, and although I do have my children and my sewing to keep me company, I do like to have my friends around, too.
That said, we had visitors this week! Steve, Amanda and Kaylee drove up from Cambridge, ON to see us for a few days. They spent a lot of time driving because Kaylee is 11 mos, and so they could only do a few hours a day, but they were here from Tuesday until Saturday morning, so it was a nice visit.

Andrew had a blast playing with his uncle Steve. He wanted to do whatever Steve was doing and spent a lot of time tackling Steve and attacking him with blankets. Kaylee, who is very pretty and almost walking, had fun exploring a new, baby proofed house. She and Aaron took turns poking and pulling hair. We enjoyed hearing all the news from Cambridge and being regaled with a new batch of "Private Steve" stories. Steve loves his job and he loves to tell us about all the crazy things he sees as a police officer with the Kitchener Police Department. The cousins all enjoyed playing together, too.

Steve and Amanda took Andrew to the park and then shopping one day and got him this cool air-driven motorcycle. Its great, and works perfectly as long as you push the little piston button to the forward position and then pump the little air pump exactly 25 times . . . . I just told him I don't know how to work it and he has to ask Daddy or Uncle Steve to play with the motorcycle.

Aaron really started bum scootching and belly crawling this week, too. He will scootch over to a convenient pull-upable object, pull himself up to standing, and stand there singing "dadagabadabaga" forever. He especially loves to do this on the tupperware cupboard knob in the kitchen, or on the open cupboard door -- then he can throw all the plastic containers across the kitchen while bouncing and talking. Its pretty funny to watch.

Finally Finished Aaron's quilt!

Well, he is only 9 months old, and his baby quilt is finally finished. I thought it might be nice to snuggle him in his very own quilt as winter sets in and he starts to get too big for little baby blankets.

This quilt matches the one I made for his cousin Kaylee. I made all the blocks for both quilts simultaneously in February and March, then finished her quilt in April. Then I was tired of it, so I went on to make all the blocks for baby Jeremy's quilt in May. Then I was doing retreats and art camp and summer vacation and getting back into the swing of things and then I messed around with Jeremy's quilt and got about half of it put together, but then decided I didn't like the backing I had for it and ordered something else online, so I decided to finish Aaron's quilt.

I really like how it turned out. Its kind of frustrating that it is one of my tamer quilts so far, but that was becuase I decied to match it with Kaylee's quilt, and I knew Steve and Amanda were a bit more traditional in their thoughts of what would be a proper "baby" quilt. It is super soft and cute, though, so I can't complain, even though its not as cool as Sam's quilt or as flashy as Morwyn's quilt or as funky and retro as Jeremy's quilt will be.

Sunday, October 14, 2007


Socks are presently our favorite toy. I had a basket full of socks to be sorted, and they have spent the day being thrown on me, piled on the baby, bulldozed around the living room. They are everywhere, in the study, the kitchen, the living room, the hallway. Of course, this happens the day before Steve, Amanda and Kaylee come to visit when I already have to clean the spare room, the extra bathroom, wash sheets, cook food and vacuum and sweep and mop and . . . well, lets just say I shouldn't be sitting at the keyboard typing about socks.

Aaron actually crawled more than 2 ft today. He made it all the way out of our room and down the hallway today before he realized that he wasn't wearing any pants and had some serious rug burn on his knees. He was sort of shreiking with excitement and crying in agony at the same time. It was pretty funny. But cute because Andrew and I were both cheering and clapping for him while he did the worm crawl down the hallway, and Aaron was super proud, but also sort of saying "Don't just stand there clapping -- pick me up already!"

Monday, October 08, 2007

Regained my Equilibrium

One bath, one early night, one quilt top completed and one sleep in later, I am feeling much more sane. I get frustrated with my son for pushing himself to the end of his limits -- waking up early, pushing through naps even when he's tired, insisting we go out even when he's obviously too overstimulated to manage behaving well, refusing to eat enough good food to properly fuel his body . . . but I do all the same things. I need to learn what I want to teach him and put us both on a schedule of good sleep and healthy meals and laid back activities in between bouts of working.

I have resolved that although being organized and having a decently well running house is important, so is my sanity and peace. I just need to find a way to keep both up better.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

That's It, I Give Up.

Once more, as Dave predicted, I have managed to overload myself. I somehow find myself teaching sunday school every second week, running the city playgroup, running the eccumenical youth group, writing for a new website, and trying to keep up with the general madness that is taking care of a difficult three year old and an eight month old who has decided he must walk. Now. Oh yeah, and then there's trying to keep the house in order and organized, lose weight, get back in shape, do something with my hair, look presentable every day, and support my husband as a minister's wife. And do all this on a very tight budget, with no family nearby and no break from my children. Did I mention winter is coming, too, and kicking Andrew outside to play when he starts plowing through my piles of freshly folded laundry or trying to grab food off the cutting board while I cut it is not going to be an option for more than a few more weeks?

So the question is, what can I drop? Who should I disapoint? Which activities are the least essential to my family?

To be fair, though, Dave was gone on clergy retreat all week, and I have been single parenting with no releif other than at bedtime last night since Tuesday morning, and my older son was completely uncooperative and screaming at me all day and then almost drowned in the bath tonight, and my younger son kept biting me to try to get my attention because, well, he knew there was no way he could be more dramatic than his brother. So this might not be the right time to make any major life decisions. In fact, this might be the time to ignore the ghastly state of the house and go take a bath.

Friday, October 05, 2007

If I Were A Pioneer I Would Be . . .

Dead. Seriously, my gardening and food processing skills are atrocious. Take away my grocery store and refrigerator and I would starve. Many of my friends have been blogging about their wonderful back yard harvests lately. The tomatos, the lettuce, the peas and beans and the squash -- the endless, endless squash that has been produced by a perfect mix of sun, rain and their loving labour. In my last three years of gardening I have utterly failed to have one sunflower bloom. Last year my six zucchini plants conspired against me to only create two zucchinis. This year the rhubarb I planted in June is still only six inches high. I simply lack the discipline or mysterious skills required to keep up a garden.

Aside from this, there is my apple tree. Due to Dave's passion for pruning, we have a huge crop of beautiful apples every August. Which I utterly fail to use. I pick large buckets of apples and leave them on my deck to "deal with later". This is code for "to toss in the compost a month from now when I realize they are too yukky to do anything with". Despite my admirable intentions this time around, I managed to make 6 jars of apple sauce, which were instantly devoured by my son, and 6 jars of apple butter. Oh, and I made 6 jars of peach "jam" from some organic peaches I bought at the store. So my ability to can / preserve / freeze for the winter is virtually non-existent.

If I were living in pioneer times, my family would die of scurvy by November. They would be warm from all the quilts I would make them. Very warm. But still very dead.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Daylight Savings Time

Saskatchewan does not have day light savings time. I think this has something to do with the big sky. Saskatchewonians feel no need to have a time change because there are no hills or mountains in the way to block the sunlight in the winter. Unfortunately, no one bothered to mention this to Andrew's biological clock. He has developed his own little internal time change and has begun waking up between 4:30 and 5 am, eating supper at 4 pm and wanting to go to sleep around 7pm. Its madness, I tell you. Sheer madness.

I tried giving him a nap yesterday, hoping that he would go to sleep later and thus wake up later. No luck. He went to sleep around 9pm, but still woke up, bright, bushy tailed and LOUD at 4:15. I made him stay in bed while I got the baby back to sleep (who was NOT bright eyed and bushy tailed). He came to find me at about 5:45, raring to go and insisting that he needed breakfast.

I think that 4:14ish must be right at the end of everyone except Dave's sleep cycle, however, becuase I actually feel more awake if I wake up at 4:30 than if I wake up at 5:30.

I just try to remind myself that one day I will be shaking him awake and trying to get him out the door in time for school. One day.

Canada Writes?

Hello, my faithful readers. CBC just opened this contest:

Its for bloggers, ad copy, humour writing, etc.

The limit is 200 words.

So, in your opinions, what are some of my more memorable, clever blog entries?