January 12, 2011

Dare you to find a match

My three little kittens seem to have problems finding their mittens. Or maybe it’s just finding two of the same mitten. I felt a need to post this for the school administration who e-mails parent reminders to send kids to school with mittens. I do send mittens. But somewhere between here and the playground lurks a ferocious mitten monster who eats mittens for lunch. If by chance the mitten monster is sleeping, the mittens then jump out of pockets and off hands for a big mitten party. The location of this celebration I have not a clue. All I know is by January, I am through buying new mittens.  My darlings either wear what we still have in the basket (matching or not) or learn a thing or two about cold fingers.

Then we’ve got hats. These don’t disappear quite as often, but today the third grade boy couldn’t seem to locate his favorite. So I had to quickly de-pompom another hat we had in our stash. Like anyone would wear a hat with a pompom on top. pleeease. Far be it from me to make him go to school looking absolutely ridiculous.

If you happen to see one of mine mittenless or hatless please be assured that the adhesive I applied to mittens/hands or hat/head came unstuck. Try as I might, there is simply not a glue on the market to keep those winter accessories in place.

Filed Under: family, kids
October 6, 2010

Crumbs and memories

Last week, we hosted our new friend Eline from the Netherlands. If she wasn’t sweet enough to begin with, she brought us me these delicious dutch cookies…karmelstroopwafels. Imagine two thin, crunchy cinnamonish waffles with caramel in the middle along with a cup of coffee. Absolutely wonderful. I’m so thankful that I couldn’t read ‘how many calories’ on the back of the foreign package because if you can’t read it, you can’t count it. And I’m sticking to that theory.


My family had a great time showing Eline the sights (especially the food!) around here as this was her first visit to the US. Unfortunately, this week our dear Eline (and those delicious cookies) is/are gone. But we’ve promised that we’ll stay in touch. Now we’re back to our regular school/work routine plus I’ve got some pretty amazing news that I promise to share soon.

Filed Under: family
September 27, 2010

Call me old-fashioned…

…but there’s something about a Mom that cozies up a home. This piece of mixed media art plays off the current week’s prompt (old- fashioned) over at Illustration Friday.

Along with using vintage trim, lace and buttons, I copied my Mom’s recipes onto transparency film. Then I adhered the film to the canvas with a thin coat of matte medium. I added paint and inks to further incorporate the recipes into the piece. One of my very favorite ingredients to instantly age any piece is Jim Holtz Distress Ink in vintage photo. And speaking of old-fashioned life, our dishwasher is finally all better and thus my appreciation for modern conveniences even greater. I can cook and bake once again.

September 21, 2010

Illness in the family

For the past few weeks, my three-year-old helper had not been acting like herself. She was leaving spots, traces of food and not drying things completely. Finally she just quit…refusing to do anything. I called for help immediately. Yesterday, the repairman delivered the news in a harsh way, like a doctor lacking people skills. He gruffly stated, “Her heater is out. I need to order a new one. It won’t be in for at least a week.” I replied in a shocked voice, “Are you kidding me? A week??!” I figured his diagnosis had to be an attempt at some sort of sick humor. Surely he had a part out on his truck that could replace the broken one within the hour. He looked me squarely in the eye and scowled, “No joke maam. I’ll be back in a week.” Then off he went with his toolbox leaving me with her and a sink full of dishes. I heard myself gasp.

At least the day I brought her home, I was feeling protective and opted to purchase the extended warranty plan. Dishwasher health insurance makes bad news slightly more tolerable. I wonder how many times we’ll order pizza this week?

Filed Under: family
May 29, 2010

Picking time well spent

These days I’m really busy. Busy with more work and projects and ventures than I’ve had for awhile. And that’s saying a lot. I could easily let myself drown if I’m not careful. But today I woke up and stubbornly decided that work or no work, I was not going to miss strawberry season. So the girls and I took off for the pick-it-yourself field right after they rubbed the sleep from their eyes.

I’m thinking it’s important every once-in-awhile to get the behind-the-scenes tour…

and keep in touch with where food really comes from…the beginnings, the inbetweens and the delicious endings.

Nora stayed close while Cara wandered the field in search of the very best berries (but we won’t go into my sweet picker perfectionist : ) While I was busy filling our strawberry bin, Nora took my camera to snap a few of her own strawberry photos. Here’s what I saw her carefully arranging and photographing when I turned around…

Tell me that girl isn’t really funny. Her 5-year-old creativity amazes me. seriously.

We managed to pick nearly 15 lbs of berries in under an hour. Strawberry shortcake is on the menu tonight and tomorrow and maybe the next night.

Back at the strawberry weigh-and-pay, we met some fuzzy duckling friends that amused us and yes I’ll admit to having a sudden urge to paint ducks.

Today’s morning was certainly more memorable and inspiring than where I’m sitting now. I’m reminding myself that I need to make time for random outings. Because who wants to read a post about the lady behind her computer all day anyway? Enough said.
May 9, 2010

What I really wanted for Mother’s Day (cough)…

This carefully chosen gift made me laugh out loud. All I had asked for today was a little peace and quiet…but I’ll take humor too. And whom do you suppose will be making pancakes this week?!

Happy Mother’s Day to all you Moms and may the force be with you.
Filed Under: family
April 16, 2010

A Friday-To-Do List

Nora seen composing our Friday-To-Do List using preschool shorthand.

1) NORA = Clean Nora’s Room (check)
2) M = Pick up disc at client’s office for Mommy’s design work (check)
3) L = Library (check)
4) BB= Clean both bathrooms
5) L = Lunch (check)
6) N = Nap

Somehow we spent too much time at the “L” and got behind with things. Friday priorities. I’m sure going to miss my little helper when she checks into kindergarten next year.

Now back to our last to-do’s…


Filed Under: family, kids
April 4, 2010

Happy Easter

Sweet wishes from me to you for a bright and cheerful Easter day. In between our celebrations over here and waaay too many chocolate eggs, I’m finishing up a new painting. Hopefully it will be ready for show tomorrow. And don’t let me forget that somebody needs to eat all of those hard-boiled eggs in the next few days. We need an eat-as-many-as-you-decorate rule.
Filed Under: family
February 14, 2010

Happy Valentines

Despite deadlines and a towering laundry pile, I’m reminding myself that today is special. A taking-time-kind-of-date reserved for coloring, crafting, puzzle-making, Wii challenging, baking (with chocolate and heart sprinkles), Lego building, reading-out-loud, talking and listening, board game playing and finally later, movie and popcorn sharing.

Hope your day is filled.
Filed Under: family
February 12, 2010

Meet Picasso

Introducing our new two-year-old, bellyrubloving, laid back, tabby boy Picasso. This cat business all started after years of constant kid-pet-pleading resulting in little Penny last May. Shortly after Penny came to live with us, I couldn’t help but get Mary Beth’s words out of my head…how two cats together were so much better than one. Errrrr….thanks Mary Beth. So after mulling that over for several months, we all decided it was time Penny had a special friend of her own. This past weekend, we drove to the animal shelter and spent a good two hours looking for a young cat that might be a good fit for all of us. Mind you, this new cat would have to pass the “Nora test.” A test so difficult and grueling that only one cat (out of 50+) would still be purring at the end. Picasso, you are a *very* special cat.

After a couple days of isolation, we let these two meet. You are witnessing their first interaction. Just look at that Penny offering a firm handshake and ‘how do you do.” I wish I could say that we haven’t had hissing (or even a little growling) over the past couple of days, but I think that they’re doing quite well all things considered.

Here they are sitting down together for a staring contest. Fingers crossed that they become great companions and that I can soon completely agree that two cats really are better.
Filed Under: family

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