Thursday, February 24, 2011

Running in from the rain

Tonight while I was in class it began to rain really hard, and there was just no way to avoid tramping through it quite a bit.  Susie and I had bags of stuff to carry from our afternoon on campus, and though my friend who gave us a ride kindly pulled up to pick us up, we still got drenched.  I love how Susie silently bore getting pelted by the shower and then had this deer in the headlights look on her face when we got home!

She was precious as I peeled off her wet layers and stuffed her in fluffy, dry jammies for bed.  I wonder if her hair will be all the way dry in the morning?

Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

Monday, February 21, 2011

Boy Stuff I've Made

Two super awesome blogs that I enjoy reading (MADE and Made by Rae) are featuring a WHOLE month of stuff just for boys.  Many sewing projects and craft blogs are centered around girls, and I have really appreciated all the fun inspiration I've found reading these blogs as well as their archives from last year.  I am a beginner in sewing, to say the least, but in honor of "For the Boy" month, I've worked on a few boy projects for my nephews and my baby-on-the-way.

Here are the pictures of what I've made.  PLEASE keep in mind, I am a beginning sewer. . . which you can tell by my lovely stitchery. :)

 This was my first project -- actually, I only finished it in honor of "For the Boy" month.  I had already done most of the owl.  This was for my nephew Graham, and it's a cheat, because I just used the iron-on stuff (I made it before I got my sewing machine).
 Tie up-cycled from one of my husband's ties (he approved it first!).  It's for a gift, but I will probably make more.  The tutorial on how to make them is right here.  Taken from the archives of last year's "For the Boy" month.
 Drool bib for my baby boy, who is on the way.  I would not give it away because of how poorly it is sewn, but if he's just going to spit up on it, oh well. :)  I was very excited about the THOUGHT behind this bib, but it was really just one major oops after another (not sure if you can tell that there is gingham UNDER the white elephant -- that'd be my first mistake.  Ironed the wrong side down. . . and it went downhill from there).
My SIL Kari found out she is expecting her 3rd boy.  Needless to say, she's well equipped in boy clothes and gear, but to celebrate his special status, I made him a little number bib. 

Finally a picture of Susie playing with her older cousin Max this weekend.  He's not quite 2 years older than her, and she totally thinks he's awesome.  I took them outside for a bit of fresh (and COLD) air and sunshine to run around.  I had them running races down to the shed and back, which of course was just an excuse to make them run fast.  Sus was nonplussed by her losses and kept running after him anyway. :)  I love how Max has that big stick in his hand here. :)  Boys.

I feel like Susie is the kind of little girl who could definitely enjoy having a little brother to play with!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Al Mohler on Bookstores

I really hope Dr. Mohler is right.  I would miss bookstores so very much. . .

Read his article here.  I work for the "excellent store on our campus" that he mentions -- thanks, sir. :)

This quote stuck out to me as especially true: “If you remove books from our towns and villages and malls, there will be less opportunity for the serendipitous discovery of books. And that will make it tougher to sell books.”

In the past, I worked for a store that recently went out of business, which was a tragedy for the community it had served for years.  The community probably does not realize what a loss it has sustained. . . until they notice that their kids will now only have the option to peruse books at WalMart. . . in between grocery and school clothes shopping.  I imagine that perusal will not be a lengthy one.

Do you agree Dr. Mohler?  Do you love to handle books before you buy them?  Do you shop for books in a real brick and mortar store?  Support the future of your community and the future of BOOKS by shopping for them locally!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Scenes from Valentine's Day

We celebrated V-day on Saturday with heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast, cards, presents for Susie, and a VERY fun date night for Josh and I -- eating at Havana Rhumba (YUMMY Cuban restaurant), a little Target (fun) shopping and Pie Kitchen for dessert.  Thankful for our friends from our small group at church who babysat (for free!) so we could go out!

So today was not a huge celebration day (we both worked), but there was still some fun involved.  Here are some pics to outline our Valentine's Day:

1. Fetal echo on our little guy who is growing  and making me grow!  I'm 25 weeks, and he's got a nice normal heart as far as we can tell.  I watched his heart on the ultrasound monitor for almost an hour (the total U/S was longer than an hour), but of course have no pictures of that process.  Here's me right before we left.

Please click on this picture -- I look less chubby when the photo is enlarged.

2. Came home from work to find these framed family pictures on the wall!  What a great Valentine's surprise!  I'd bought the frames and put in pictures a while back, but I'm bad at arranging, and Josh is sort of a perfectionist, so I knew I'd just have to wait for him to have at it.  The Valentine decor was made by me and Sus last week -- she colored the hearts hanging from the light fixture over our table. :)

3. Valentine cards and presents in the mail!  I've been hanging Susie's cards over her bed -- I started this tradition last year, and now I think it's going to be our thing.

4. It was WARM enough to play outside, so as soon as dinner was over, Sus and I headed out.  Our Chinese neighbor met us on the steps and said "Oh, Susie, you have wonnerful hair!"  I think it was the strawberry clips that won him over. :)  Our apartment complex has a big pebble pit where it once housed a swimming pool and Susie loves to play in it.  It's a somewhat cleaner version of a sandbox.

5. Washed the cups in the sink when we came back in.  Susie was soaked and so was the bathroom floor, but WOW was that entertaining.  She "washed" them for 30-45 minutes while I cleaned the tub.  Now that she's big enough to kneel on a chair, this will be a frequent activity.

6. Snuggles, kisses and giggles from my little Bizzy Boo -- she's a pretty sweet Valentine, since I didn't get to see my man much today!  When looking at this picture, she noticed her belly was showing (which she calls "boody") -- haha! 

This is her "cheese" smile

 And, hey this holiday isn't quite over yet!  Josh just texted to say he's bringing home milkshakes!

Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

Friday, February 11, 2011

Spring Fever

We could not be more excited that it is supposed to warm up over the weekend!  While it was so cold last week, I busted out some of the precious spring dresses I have saved for Susie and had her try them on to see if they will fit when spring finally arrives.  I loved lots of the pics I snapped, but especially this one, with her ponytails going forward over her head (she'd just got up from naptime) and the Mr. Potato Head parts laying all around her.

I hope it gets really warm soon, or I'm afraid this white dress isn't going to fit for spring!

Linking up to Simply Modern Mom.
Simply Modern Mom

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Recent Library Picks

We've gotten in the swing of a more regular trip to the Library with Susie to choose books.  I don't really want to go more frequently than every 2-3 weeks because sometimes it takes half that for her to warm up to a book!  So far, she has grown more and more fond of each pick from the library after the first week and a half -- even if she loved it right away. :) So I feel like I am more equipped to rate her library picks near the end of their stay in our home than I was at the beginning. 

Though we don't always get out our library books each day, we do read some of them almost every day.  Here are a few that we've had for a couple weeks now (and will be going back tomorrow) that she really has enjoyed:

1. Curious George and the Puppies -- gotta admit, even though this tops the chart of her faves, I personally am glad that we did eventually have to take it back.  She loves George, she loved the puppies and the "OH NO!" part of the book when he let them all out.  I could see how much she loved it, and though George and the puppies were quite cute, the story about him visiting the animal shelter was rather BORING. :)  But not to a one-year-old!!  So we read it 17 times a day. . . at least, probably. . .

2. One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss -- this book is loooooong.  Don't get me wrong, she loves it!  She especially loves the first 8 or so pages, which she nearly has memorized.  And we have certainly read all 63 rhyming pages at least a dozen times, but it really is long for this young of a kiddo.  Plus, after the first half-dozen pages, each page is a new creature/situation, and pretty much unrelated.  Cat in the Hat is about this long, but it's all one story, so probably easier to follow along (same characters each page, thus, not resetting your brain for something new).  She calls the little girl in this book "Sally" because she looks like the little girl from Cat in the Hat.  :)  One fun thing I have found is that after she got pretty familiar with this book, I could read a line or two and then pause when I came to a rhyming word and she'd fill it in very well.  

Me: "Some are sad, and some are glad, and some are very very. . . "
Susie: "BAD!"
Me: "Why are they sad and glad and bad? I do not know, go ask your. . . "
Susie: "DAD!"
(imagine her words sometimes being sputtered around her thumb, if it were close to bedtime)

3. Time for Bed by Mem Fox -- I found this in big board book edition at the library, and thought it might be a sweet book to read at bedtime.  I've always loved these illustrations -- I used to buy new baby cards with the picture of the goose and gosling at bedtime with the stars behind them: GORGEOUS!  Susie loves this book because she loves animals, and the cover has sheep, which are some of her faves.  This is also a good one for learning rhyming.  

Me: "It's time for bed, little mouse, little mouse, darkness is falling all over the. . . "
Susie: "HOUSE!"

4. Hush Little Ones by John Butler -- our librarian found this for me at our last visit when I mentioned how much Susie liked monkeys.  There is one page of a mommy and baby monkey (which is just utterly adorable), but otherwise not about monkeys at all -- however, I'm so glad she found it for us.  One of Susie's old faves is also by this illustrator, and I'm so very fond of the illustrations!  John Butler draws the animals so round and fat and furry that you want to reach into the picture and pet them. :)  For a while, each time we'd read this book (usually at bedtime, again), when we got to the monkey page, Susie would try to curl up on me like the baby monkey was curled up on his mommy.  Super sweet.

Friday, February 04, 2011

This is what happens. . .

. . . if you don't completely clear the dinner table after supper and leave your 20 month old to her own devices.  I heard some thumping, which sounded like the tray coming off her high chair, but assumed she was playing with her doll.  She was, and I guess she was the mommy, up in MY seat, stirring in her pan of eggs!

Linking up to Simply Modern Mom.
Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

January Reading

The year 2010 was the year of unfinished books for me.  I cannot pinpoint the reason for it, but I started many good books without finishing them.  So this year I wanted to be more thorough and finish something each month.  January was a pretty good start -- I read three books and several chapters of another.  Here's what I read:

1. Feminine Appeal by Carolyn Mahaney -- just the first few chapters.  I am reading this long distance with Josh's sisters and brother's wife, and we are reading a chapter a week, and then posting "quotes and questions" to each other via Facebook.  It's really been great.  I loved this book the first time I read it, and I feel like it's even better this time around.  If you aren't familiar with the Mahaneys -- I'd recommend checking out their GREAT blog Girl Talk.  One of the best and most uplifting blogs out there!

2.  The Summer Before by Ann M. Martin -- this is the prequel to the Baby-sitter's Club series that came out when I was nine.  I devoured those books as a kid, and when I spotted this recently-written prequel at the library, I had to indulge myself.  It tells the story of Kristy, Mary Ann, Claudia and Stacy just before they began the Baby-Sitter's Club together.  While it will never top the list of all-time favorites for me, it was really fun to remember the characters like that.  Back in the day, Claudia was my favorite because she was so cool, but as a grown-up I see that I was much more like Kristy.  

3. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen -- Josh's parents gave us all Kindles for Christmas, and since many great classic works are free, I quickly added those to my e-reader and jumped into this Austen work I've been wanting to read.  I really enjoyed the hero of the story -- he was so funny at points it seemed more like a Dickensian hero.  I don't think I prefer it over other Austen, but it was a terrific read just the same.  I think this was an excellent way to start out my e-reading experience, because it made a thick book light and not tiresome to hold in one hand for even long periods of time (found that out once when Susie fell asleep on me, and I could only hold up one arm to hold my Kindle.  I normally enjoy flipping to endnotes to gain perspective on the historical setting, but it wasn't as handy to do so with the Kindle, so it kept me right in the story more, which is rather enjoyable as well.

4. Lady Jane Grey, Nine-Day Queen of England by Faith Cook -- this was the best book I read last month.  I finished the last chapter with the utmost respect for this young Tudor girl who was plotted against and mistreated her whole life long, only to die honorably without forsaking her sincere beliefs.  At nine, she was sent to court (Henry the VIII was on the throne) and was educated alongside her cousin, Prince Edward by godly tutors who embraced Reformation teachings.  Jane was brilliant, and at 13 and 14 she held regular correspondence with leading Reformers living throughout Europe such as Martin Bucer.  She was able to dialogue about Theology and Scripture with these men.  I was amazed by the both her brilliance in writing to them, and that they were willing to write to a woman, and such a young woman at that!  Poor Jane was forced to marry, and then take the throne at age 15, and then after just a few days, abandoned by everyone who forced the crown upon her, including her parents, all of whom rallied for Queen Mary.  While Jane lived, Mary's throne seemed threatened, so she was condemned to death by beheading.  The last 2 chapters of this book were simply amazing, telling of how a good priest, Feckenham, was determined to "save" Jane, both her life and soul by converting her Catholicism.  Mary offered Jane her life if she would renounce the "new religion".  This young girl at 16 faced many priests in public debate, just days before her execution, knowing that if she were to recant, her life would be spared.  I was in awe to read her debate (which is recorded in Foxe's Book of Martyrs), and how at its conclusion, Feckenham says they should have changed places, with Jane as the teacher and he as the disciple, and offered to be her spiritual support at the executioner's block.  While this book began a bit slowly (many biographies do, you know), it ended just breathtakingly!  What an admirable heroine is Lady Jane Grey!

February is here -- time to begin some new books!