Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I have TWO blogs.

So I started a second blog. I decided this one is for the family and kid stuff. The other blog is more about me. My knitting, cooking, baking, attempts at sewing, etc. will be over there, not here. Maybe it was a dumb idea, but it is too late.

The address is If you are interested in my knitting, cooking, baking, attempts at sewing and similar things about me, please head over there. If not, please enjoy my children here. They are lovely. And I will post something about them later. I promise.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

An Attempt at Ice Skating

Nora had the past week off of school for winter break. On Tuesday, we piled on our winter wear and headed to Bayfront Park to the ice rink. It was warm out, and we were excited to be outside after the crazy weather we have been experiencing.

Nora has been skating more than any of us this year. She has gone with Brownies, with friends, and with me and Dana.

Dana is getting pretty good on the ice, too. She splits her time between skating and playing in the snowbanks. This is the second year she has worn this wild snowsuit. Nora wore it for a year, too. Next winter, she will be in snow pants and a parka like a big kid. That makes me a wee bit sad.

Tuesday was pretty sunny out, and as the girls skated, they eventually got near the middle of the rink, where they discovered about two inches of water! I was not about to be the one to destroy the city rink, so we called it a day and headed to the London Road Car Wash to get an oil change and car wash. We needed both desperately.

This was their first time at an oil change place with lifts. They were fascinated! Spellbound! In awe! It was pretty cute. They couldn't get enough of the experience, which was good, since it took about half an hour. After the oil change, they stood and watched the car come through the wash. Which was also fascinating. I wish I had known they would love this experience. It's the only chore they have ever found so enjoyable. I could have been spending our fun time getting the oil changed and car washed, if only I had known.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A Little Bit of Dana

Boy, I am starting to feel guilty about the excess on Dana and the lack of Nora. Darn first grade! It keeps her away from us all darn day.

A package arrived from Aunt Sol the other day. In it were two foam candy heart necklace kits. These are such a hit! I threaded up a tapestry needle and the work began.

How's that for a concentration face?

Well on its way. Isn't it cute?

Dana humoring me. I made this hat for my sister for her birthday, and Dana modeled it so I could post a photo on Ravelry. Clearly, the hat is much too big for her. But I thought her eyes peeking out through the lace made for a nice photo.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Snow Day Valentine Crafts

The weather guys hyped up this ice storm we were supposed to have today. They talked it up for days, and the school guys decided to cancel classes pretty much everywhere in the region. They didn't want thousands of kids riding buses home in treacherous conditions. Of course, it only ended up raining for a little while, but at least nobody got hurt (that I know of anyway). And I suppose there is still the potential for more rain and more freezing.

Anyhoo, Nora's teacher sent home a note last week telling us that we were to make a Valentine's box at home and bring it in this week. So that was our major activity today.

I started things off by tracing some heart cookie cutters onto sponges and cutting them out. Then I got really creative and cut an empty toilet paper tube in half so they could make circles, too. I got some containers and lids out of recycling and squirted in some glitter paint in Valentine-y colors: pink, purple, red, silver and gold. And the girls got busy stamping hearts and circles onto big paper.

Dana is safest painting in her underoos because she is not that clean about it. It saves me some major laundry headaches. I have plenty of those as it is.

Then they went outside for a couple of hours to play in the soft, melty snow. They brought out some Barbies and horses and occupied themselves for a lovely amount of time. I stayed inside to vacuum and wash the floors and strip the beds. That is how I get my kicks on Mondays. Woohoo!

Eventually, the paint was dry and the girls were ready. We took two empty coffee cans and covered them with the fancy glittery stamped paper. Then the girls added paper hearts, gold foil hearts, ribbon, yarn and marker. I love that they have to pull all sorts of stuff out of the craft box to see if it will work: pipe cleaners, pompoms, oogly eyes. You can see Nora putting a Valentine note into Dana's coffee can. Pretty sweet!

The note says this:
hape valintins day dana I hop you hav a gud vanintinz day
fram Nora
lov Nora

I am head over heels for that spelling. Probably I should want her to have perfect spelling, but this is only going to last a little while and I am enjoying it while I can.

The girls steal a smooch while showing off their completed cans. They found this pretty entertaining. Now I need to go put it all away because dinner is almost done and, well, you saw what our table looks like. I am half hoping for another ice storm day tomorrow so we can make Valentines for Nora's classmates.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

That Nora

On Thursday morning, I woke up as usual and went into the bathroom. I just about had a heart attack when I saw Dana asleep on the bathroom floor in front of the toilet. I tried to take her into her room, but she told me she wanted to sleep on the floor. She was adamant, so I just sort of walked out, figuring I would give her a couple minutes to come to her senses. She soon came downstairs and sat at the table to eat her oatmeal. Which she promptly threw up. I realize this is not the best story ever. The good part is Nora. She was so concerned, which was incredibly sweet. Kevin brought Dana up to rinse her off in the tub, and Nora took the opportunity to write a note to Dana on the white board.

I just love her inventive spelling. And the drawings-she made me promise I would tell Dana that the one that looks like a flower is actually an alien. Dana is pretty fond of aliens. She speaks often of going into space to find aliens. She thinks they will be mean, but she is strong enough to take care of them. After she assures me of her strength, she generally makes a fist and shows me her muscles.

Luckily, that was the extent of the sickness. She had a sore stomach for a couple days, and some other issues (use your imagination because I will not elaborate), but she is all good now.

Friday was "I Love to Read" day for the first graders at school. Nora was told to bring a beach towel and a pillow to lounge on, and a stack of books to read and share with her buddies. She also had to bring her shoes, her take home folder and her lunch. Plus her normal getup of parka, snow pants, scarf, hat, mittens, boots. The poor kid could hardly walk down the driveway carrying so much fabric. The photo does not do it justice, but I am giving it a whirl anyway.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Duplo Village

We have a ton of Duplo blocks. You can tell from the photo below, where Dana is sitting behind the box we keep them in. Generally the box is filled to the top.

We haven't played with them in months. The kids were bored with them, so I packed them up and put them in the closet. And forgot about them. Until last night, when Dana was having a complete meltdown at bedtime, repeatedly screaming at Daddy, "I WANT TO PLAY!" I tried to calm her but all of my normal tricks failed. Dana just screamed louder. I am sure she was thinking something along the lines of, "Can't these people HEAR me? I WANT TO PLAY!" Eventually, I whispered a grand plan to her, a plan for building a village out of Duplo blocks for the Smurfs to play in. She calmed down and listened, and was OK after that.

When she woke up this morning, she remembered our plan. So after Nora got on the bus, we hauled the giant box out of the closet and downstairs.

I am pretty sure my mom got this at a garage sale. This box contains hundreds of dollars worth of Duplos. Those puppies are expensive! Thank goodness for my mom and her garage sale prowess.

So in the process of building our first Duplo house this morning, I picked all of the stray items out of the box. We found some treasures that had been missing for a while, and some scary things, too. Things like puff corn and pretzels. At least a third of the things in the above photo have made it to the trash.

Nora got right in on the fun after school. She has always been excellent at building cool stuff, but it has been so long since she played with these. I was so impressed with her skills now that she is six. Look at that cool door she built!

They took over the kitchen table until we ate dinner. They played together so well all evening, until Dana decided she needed a bath. Nora, for the first time ever, chose to skip the tub and continue with the blocks. I love when an old toy resurfaces and seems like new again. Now, if only they would keep the riff raff out of the Duplo box...