Thursday, August 25, 2011

Put a smile on your face

This last year has been chock full of struggles for me. This coming year doesn't look so good either. I think one thing I like about blogging is that you can choose to hide your struggles if you want, or at least focus on the good things in your life.

When my paternal grandma was dying of cancer she still always asked how you were doing and would pray for you. It inspired me that she was able to look past her own issues and focus on someone else. I try to emulate her as much as I can. Along with this idea, I also have been making myself count my blessings. These are the things that put a smile on my face.

Here are some of the recent "Smile Makers" from my summer. Enjoy!

The beach and a daughter not being sassy!
Nothing sweeter than blackberries you just picked!

Love Love Love the water

Friends all around

The sunset from my mom's farm

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Simple Skirt from "Made"

Somehow, in between my crazy family trips. I managed to whip up another article of clothing for E.

Actually, this skirt (made from more of the .90 fabric I picked up months ago) was a breeze to make. It took me about 30 minutes, including distractions from the kids and husband. I followed the tutorial on MADE.  It was so easy. MADE is a great blog. The tutorials are simple and easy to follow. Her pictures are great.

The only bad part? I REALLY want a new camera and a serger. Oh, and my own labels to put on things I make.

Vacation: subjecting small children to "quality" time in the car

Ahh... To be able to finally sit down and blog. After my relatively laid-back June and July, August was a three year-old hyped up from eating a bag of jelly beans and a pilfered soda. No, really, it was that crazy.

The highlights of my August so far:

After another weekend trip to my mom's to visit with family from out of town, the kids and I headed to the far northwestern part of Washington to visit with more family! We went with my mom (a teacher married to a farmer-she's always game for a impromptu vacation) and took a little stop in Leavenworth, WA. Leavenworth, or "Elevenworth" as E called it, is this great little town in the Cascades that is all Bavarian themed. 
E and J with their candy from the Sweet Shoppe in Leavenworth.
After Leavenworth, we headed to Lynden, WA. We visited the Northwest Washington Fair. J's favorite were the horses and the tractors. E liked the cotton candy and the horses.
One of the best parts of the fair was seeing the new calf that had been born earlier that morning.

From the fair we drove over to Birch Bay. The tide was really low and E and the other kids had a blast wading out and trying to dig for clams.
From Birch Bay, the caravan of cars headed north to Semiahmoo, where we drove out on the spit and enjoyed eating fresh blackberries from the bushes that lined the parking lot.

We had a great time playing on the different sides of the spit- one was rocky, one was sandy. We ended our day at the Peace Arch  at the US/Canadian Border. It was very pretty. Unfortunately, my camera ran out of batteries after I took my first picture. Wish you could have been there!

On our way home after everything was said and done, my mom thought a nice break from the 8 hour drive would be a tube float down the Wenatchee River. So we stopped at Leavenworth (it really is a great place!) and floated down the river for an hour and a half. No pictures of that fun jaunt either.

When the kids and I finally made it back to our house, E requested that we not drive ANYWHERE for at least a week.

So two days later I made them drive an hour to my work so I could start getting my classroom ready for the first day of school!

Monday, August 8, 2011

On the Farm

We went to my mom's this weekend. J and E love going to visit Grandma and Grandpa, especially during harvest. My step-dad is a wheat farmer and, after this weekend, there may be a strong chance that J might want to follow in his footsteps.

Grandpa started harvesting the day after we got there. After his ride on the combine, J excitedly told me that he was going to work with Grandpa tomorrow. I'm not exactly sure if Grandpa knew that but this is what happened the next morning:

Watching the men get the trucks ready for the day
J couldn't wait for breakfast. Grandma was kind enough to bring it to him. E wasn't quite sure what the rush was all about. After the trucks the kids and Grandpa decided to give Gunnar the horse a little morning snack.
Grandpa gets side-tracked. 
Gunnar was anxious for his carrots!
After feeding the horse, J set off with the men for the fields. A little before lunch Grandpa radio-ed in to the house to let us know that J was getting a little restless.

Somebody was NOT pleased that he was done "working" on the combine.  But he got over it when I told him we would be back later that week.

 Along with helping out on the farm E and J also had a blast playing with my sister's and my old toys.

In case you were wondering, the above pictures are documentation of "Mr. Tom" and his cat "Rose."  Mr. Tom is a snake hunter and was recently bitten by a rattle snake. But Rose ran and got help, so he lived. The rag in his hand is his precious "Snug" (aka best friend since birth. There is always drama when we can't find Snug).

I'm thrilled that J is exploring different career options. Farmer and Snake hunter are way better than his previous choice. 

Last year he wanted to be an ELEPHANT.