Friday, August 27, 2010

So We Beat On

These days I'm getting used to a new normal. I keep thinking "things are going to slow down" but the pace quickens and I adjust--sometimes well, other-times not as well.

Another Friday has come too quickly and I must postpone yet another Friday Finds.  I am musing over what next wonderful treasures from Etsy to focus on but until then I will keep up a running pace with everything else going on.

On the very bright side of things. I have been busily working in my little workshop. Researching about all things wonderfully natural for your skin and creating new products either on paper or in my mind that I will soon be adding to my shop.  One of the most recent additions will be a line of perfumes, starting with one that was created using the same scents I have put in my Fifth Avenue Body Butter.

Another new addition will be a Dog Shampoo Bar in honor of my new little friend whose beautiful white coat needs just as much if not more attention than my own hair.

From there my products will move to the face with face masks and all things to make our faces radiate in the coming months when the air is dryer and our skin suffers even as we drink in the refreshing beauty of fall.

So all these things have been much on my mind, as is our school which is ever continuing and of course the best news of all, the fact that I think we have finally found a house (more info on this to come in the very near future).

For now we press on looking for hope and strength and sometimes finding it.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Friday Finds: A little note

I readily admit that my generation is counted among those who have very little recollection of writing with pen and ink. I am much more familiar with a keyboard and Times New Roman than a pen and paper.
However, I still love pens. I love writing (even if my handwriting is more like hieroglyphics that need to be deciphered) and there is something so powerful about sending a real note through the mail to a loved one, friend, or someone who just needs encouragement.  I need to do this more often. The thought is there but the action rarely follows.

So this Friday Finds is dedicated to handcrafted notes that make it even easier to say "hello" or "I'm thinking about you".

Thank you

















Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Making a wish

Today marks the 6th year in my oldest son's life.  He seems relatively unfazed. Don't get me wrong. He loves the fact that it is his birthday.  He gets to take a day off school, watch movies, play games and even have chocolate chip waffles with chocolate syrup for breakfast.

I am guilty of wanting birthdays to be special. I probably make too much of them sometimes. His party was shared with his cousin on Monday night but I still could not resist the urge to make his actual day special as well.  I thought of all kinds of wonderful things to do but honestly we've been gone for two days and I was longing for a day home. So I have tried in other ways to make this day special for him and he is enjoying every minute. I have to remind myself that it really doesn't take much to make a 6 year old happy.

The cowboy party went very well. It was slightly wet and muggy and the mosquitos joined us without an invitation so we passed on saddle riding, pin the star on the wanted poster and many other things we could have done to boost the party from a "family get together" to "pottery barn kids". August is no time for a birthday (sorry Warren).  I did spend much of Monday working on his cake. I was determined to make a cowboy hat and although it wasn't exactly what I was envisioning I was happy when it was all done.

We have reserved one special gift for Warren to be given tonight with just our family. Other than that he has already been enjoying the day with playmobil (his gift from us and my parents).

I wish I could say I have spent the day reflecting on the last 6 years, thinking of what it was like when Warren was just a tiny 6lb infant in my arms. Time has flown by and yet I love every minute of him being older. I love the talks we have as we are driving into town, the things he is learning and devouring in school, the moments he is already taking to reflect on the meaning of life or just the times we are being crazy, dancing, reading comics and laughing.  Every year is fun and I hope that I can enjoy all of them.

Friday, August 13, 2010

A New Addition

Unfortunately my Friday Finds post will have to wait. Things have been a bit crazy around here with the new addition to our family.

When my college graduation was approaching I made a list of the things I wanted to do immediately after the dust settled and I found myself moving on to something else.  The #1 thing on my list: Get a dog.

My parents had gotten me a dog when I was in 4th grade and I had grown extremely attached to him.  He had some health complications and had to be "put down" while I was in college. I was amazed at how deeply it effected me. I was determined that as soon as I could I would get another dog.

Shortly after meeting Ben I asked the deeply personal question, "would you ever have a dog of your own?" Yes, skipping the questions about kids and a family, I dove in to the core issue, does he like dogs?

Unfortunately life usually never goes as planned and mine certainly didn't. I moved into several rentals which did not allow pets and once I got married seemed to find myself in the same situation.  It didn't keep me from broaching the subject....often. Ben looked on the practical side of things. What would we do when we went away? How would we house train a dog and kids? Did I really want another infant to take care of?  His arguments made sense to my logical side but did not sway my desires.

As of Thursday morning I still found myself with 3 kids, a great apartment and a wonderful husband, pressing on with the first week of homeschooling and still dogless.  That is until Ben surprised me. He showed up with Lucy. A little terrier who is so very sweet and adorable and has made her way into our hearts already.

I finally have my girl and am loving every minute of it!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Friday Finds: Giddy Up

Lately I have been thinking a lot about cowboys. Mostly how to make something cowboyish in the form of a cake.  My oldest son will soon be celebrating his 6th birthday and has requested a cowboy themed birthday party.  

I must say that I jumped on the opportunity to have a birthday theme that didn't revolve around commercialism. Up until this point I haven't forbidden it but I do sigh a bit when the boys want their party to be based on the latest fad in the store aisle. Cowboys seem so wholesome and traditional.  It also worked out really well because Warren will be sharing his birthday celebration with his cousin (who spends most of his time wandering around wearing a large cowboy hat and holsters).  

In honor of both their birthdays this Friday Finds is dedicated to The Cowboy.







Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Back to School

I am the first to admit that even though I have been out of formal schooling for 8 years, when August arrives I still find myself lingering in the "back to school" aisle feeling an overwhelming need to buy a few new notebooks, pencils, paper and even a new planner. In fact it wasn't until last year that I finally transitioned to using a planner that didn't completely revolve around the school year.  

This year it is a bit different though. I actually get to realize some of my desires. I am entering the new era of more full time homeschooling. Up until now we've been doing letters, making sounds, writing a bit, and reading, reading, reading.  We're moving on now. We're moving to history, a bit of science, grammar, writing, math and even more reading.  

When my eldest was a drooling, napping, blubbering 6 month old it started. I started to think about what I was going to do with him. Where I was going to go with his education. What course of action I would take to expand his ever growing brilliant brain (doesn't everyone think this of their first born?). I told myself, "now is the time to get this figured out. Don't wait until he is getting ready to start school to get this all sorted." But the other side, the practical side, said, "What's the pressure? I mean really, he just learned to roll over. You have TONS of time." 

Then the others followed and my time filled up.  I found myself months before Warren was going to start kindergarten dying to see the big picture and desiring to have at least a very general idea of what direction we were going to take.  So I dove in, researched, asked many questions of seasoned homeschoolers who would just look at me and smile that, "ah yes, this is your first isn't it?" (the same smile you get after you've just had your first baby and you're playing mozart and reading board books nonstop).  

So thus begins our adventure. We are officially starting school again August 9th. I say again because I also had aspirations of schooling year round. We started the very beginnings of 1st grade in May but were quickly derailed by a move and a VERY busy summer. So I am beginning with the rest of the world and hoping that maybe next summer will look a little different but who knows.  

Oh and for those of you wondering, I have decided to take the classical approach to schooling. It is definitely becoming the more trendy way to homeschool these days but that is not why I have chosen that direction. I love the emphasis on reading, writing and grammar. The coherency and flow of the material as it all links together, and I love how it utilizes the child's strengths during their different stages of development. 

I say all this knowing that one day, years from now, I will probably join the chorus of other seasoned homeschoolers that have looked back and said that they wished they would have worried less about which curriculum they used.

However, I naively press on with all the gusto of a parent who is new to this, excited about what lies in store, and desirous of giving my sons every educational opportunity I am able to lay before them.