April Fools

21 Apr


For the most nasty and creative April Fools prank ever, Pumpkin Pie and Tamale Pie made “orange juice” from water and the cheese powder from a box of Mac-n-cheese.  They totally tricked the Resident Captain into drinking a big glass when he got home from work.  

Additionally, they made fake cat feces with some wet cardboard and told me that the cat had made a mess in the laundry room.  They then transferred the mess to Blueberry Pie’s room and got him as well.  

You might ask, if you know us well, how on earth we came to have a cat?

George is a stray cat that adopted us. He is an OUTSIDE cat, but Baby Bean sneaks him into the house pretty often.


He puts up with a lot of silliness–I’m often surprised that he stays around.


Some days I wonder if I’m only fooling myself when I call him an outside pet.

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The Skooter Pies Discover Mud.

20 Apr

Skeeter


Spring has arrived, and on one balmy afternoon I let the twins outside, knowing they would find the mud puddles–even though they’d never played in puddles before.  It didn’t take long for them to find the puddles.

Baby Bean and Key Lime Pie (not pictured) joined in the dirty fun. I just sat on the porch and enjoyed watching their excitement and curiosity.

Skeeter likes to dip his head in the water

The downside is that they know about mud now, so they beeline it to the mud puddle every time they get outside.  (Which is pretty often because Skooter learned how to open doors. Curses.)

Zeek

It was still worth it.

Tasting the muddy driveway gravel.  They had to taste the mud several times. Seriously these boys have refused to taste so many delicious foods, like flan 🍮(!!), but the mud went right into their mouths–more than once!

A muddy bath to extend the fun. And there were little muddy bite marks in the soap when they got out of the tub.  Seriously, I don’t know why I bother cooking.


Muddy paw prints are clues that fun was had today.

In this time of extraordinary pressure, educational and social, perhaps a mother’s first duty to her children is to secure for them a quiet and growing time, a full six years of passive receptive life, the waking part of it for the most part spent out in the fresh air.

Charlotte Mason

The Pink Kitty Is The Important Thing.

30 Mar

I made this doll in December and gave her to Banana Cream Pie for her 5th birthday.  

Banana Cream Pie burst into tears, threw the dolly on the floor and screamed at me that she did not want this for her birthday.  

None of my other children have ever acted like that.  

So I put the dolly away, thinking maybe I’d give her to someone who’d love her, a niece or a friend’s daughter.  But not ready to part with her yet.  

Banana Cream Pie found dolly the other day and said, “When are you going to make her a pink kitty? You said you would.”  Did I?   

She pestered me all Sunday afternoon until I sat down with some felt and made a pink kitty.  Now  dolly is acceptable, I guess.  

I’m pretty sure a pink kitty by itself would have gotten as good or better reviews. I’m still asking myself if it’s my fault that I have an ungracious child. Nature? Nurture?  Who knows.  

I actually have pieces for 4 more dolls cut out, but not the heart to make them up yet.  You can find the pattern free over at Make it and Love It, but I can’t guarantee you child will love it.  I sure think it’s a cute pattern.  The only alteration I made from the instructions was to make the doll hair out of flannel instead of felt for durability.  

My word for the year resurfaces this weekend, part 1

26 Mar

I listened to this interview this afternoon. It is incredibly insightful as well as delightful and inspiring. 

 This year my focus is to better understand the idea of remembrances–the things we share as human beings that tie us together and anchor us to our past, thereby creating meaning for our future. 

 This interview begins there and then continues on gloriously. Why are stories important? Why do our children need to hear our shared story? Why is religion important? Why are institutions important? Why are covenants important? It’s an hour long, but worth every second to listen, this interview between Pulitzer Prize winning journalist David Brooks and Rabbi Sacks.

 http://rabbisacks.org/finding-moral-compass-challenging-times/

Loving the Sunshine

20 Feb

 We are having warmer days. The daffodil shoots are up and the skunks are out of hibernation. Our dog got herself sprayed this week. 
For Homeschool I have been making the girls grade their own math. I discovered that Cherry Pie  was missing 10 of 30 problems and instead of asking for help, just going on to the next lesson like it was fine.  I’ve already changed her math book once this year because she was struggling so much. So now I have to figure out what to do. I think I’m going to have to personally teach her math lessons and we are going to have to start over yet again with algebra 1. Normally the big girls do math on their own and I help Key Lime Pie.   I haven’t exactly figured out how to schedule more “me as the teacher” time, but never fear, I will figure it out.  

My big homeschool weakness is that when the girls complain about not wanting to do work, I often totally cave and let them do something else or make the assignment easier. I have to come up with some strategies to keep myself from letting them be lazy bums.  I’m too soft.


Friday night and Saturday, my sister-in-law Amy kept all 6 girls and the Skooter Pies, and I spent the day sewing a shirt for myself. It was pretty fun to finish a project. The house was weirdly quiet though. I kept catching myself listening for babies to wake up.  I finally turned on some music.  

This was my beta test  or my “muslin”.  I used an old piece of fabric that has been acting as a tablecloth for several years and was ready to be retired.  After measuring myself and the pattern, I cut a size 12 neck and shoulders, graded it out to a 14 on the sides and put a size 18 sleeve in.  

( Trying to figure out what size pattern to make from my measurements makes me feel a bit like Frankenstein’s monster–such a hodge podge of mismatched parts!).   

My muslin took until noon to create, and then went into the trash because the sleeves were too tight, the neckline was too tight across my chest, and the neckband gaped in back.  

For Try #2, I decided to trust the pattern maker a bit more.  I made a straight size 16 bodice, but I needed a size 24 sleeve because my upper arm is just big compared to the rest of me.  So  I learned how to alter a sleeve skye to fit a larger sleeve. Thank you, you tube.  I also took about a 1/2 inch out of the back neckband to hopefully fix the gap problem.  

I lucked out and the shirt fit me very well, and the neckband lay flat. Perhaps I may have been able to get away with a size 14 bodice–I think it would fit through the shoulders better-I have narrow shoulders compared to the rest of me.  Also I’d like to raise the neckline an inch, but I couldn’t figure out how to Saturday.  This morning I had an idea of how to do that and keep the pretty pleats.  Next chance I get, I’ll try it. 


The nice thing is that once  I have my pattern perfected, I’ll be able to crank out a beautiful top in a couple of hours.  My trusty dusty 20 year old Bernina 1008 is still going strong and handled this slub knit very well.  I used the overlock stitch (#12) and a needle for stretch fabrics.  

This pattern is from Hotpatterns.com, a little inde pattern company run by a husband and wife.  The wife designs and the husband does all the printing/folding/shipping.   I ❤ her patterns, all of which are graded from size 6 up to size 26.  Unheard of elsewhere! Also, she starts with a size 14 and grades up & down from there, so the patterns begin by being closer to what a real person is shaped like than the big 4 pattern companies’ patterns. That really helps if you are a Frankenstein monster or a human who has been pregnant a few times.  

 This top is called “Everybody loves the Sunshine” HP1193. It’s very forgiving and so comfortable! I need at least 3 more !

Happy Valentines Day!

16 Feb


The Scooter Pies are 18 months old!  Where has the time gone? Stinkin’ cute little cheesers 

In another year and a half, they will be 3 years old!  Life will be so different then!

Zeke (wearing orange) weighs 23 pounds and 13 oz and is about 31 inches tall.  (The nurse wasn’t very careful, so I don’t trust this measurement.)

Skeeter (wearing blue) weighs 25 pounds 5 oz and is about 32 inches tall.

I have moved them into size 2T shirts because suddenly all their 18-month shirt sleeves were about 2 inches short.  They are still wearing size 18-month pants because they have skinny little bums.

I am excited for spring to come so we can spend many more hours a day outside.  The Scooter Pies have already learned way too much about things like Nintendo wii and tablets and smart phones.  I want them to learn about bugs and sticks and dirt and rocks.

We went to the park last week, and they didn’t even try to eat the gravel! yay!!! This summer is going to be fun.

This is Good Time Management

16 Feb

Blueberry Pie got his driver’s license!

My daily life has changed so much.  No longer do I have to pick him up from seminary and drive him to school.  No longer do I have to pick him up from school and drive him to swim practice or life guard duty at the YMCA.  No longer do I have to drive him to Academic Bowl or basketball games or football games or Wednesday night activities.

I literally have 2 hours a day (or more) to get things done at home that I used to spend in the car.  I suspect I will listen to less audio books and home school & mothering podcasts.  But I am spending more time on my scripture study, my home school preparation, actual home school lessons, my laundry, and my blogging.

Its a sweet deal to suddenly be handed 2 new hours a day.