Monday, February 28, 2011

He's got the moves ...

"Mom ... you should have seed me! I was just wike the TOOF FAIRY!"

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Friday, February 25, 2011

Out of order

DAY ONE: dragon crew

I know I'm out of order with the sequencing. ...

But I'm kinda thinking I'd like to remember how we started.

They were all kind of breathing fire.


Thursday, February 24, 2011

In need of a Craftacular intervention

DAY TWO: Parade Dragon

We're going on day three of Operation Parade Dragon and I can seriously see this entire project taking until next Chinese New Year to finish.

Every day we add a little something to the dragon.

When the paint dries it will be a feather boa for a beard ...

or for eyelids ... maybe both.

I'm trying to go slowly ... since we have MONTHS until "People's Parade," which we've decided will be optimum for a dragon dancers ... but also because I'm procrastinating until I've figured out how to proceed.

Already friends have provided me with really WONDERFUL links.

Do we want a ground dragon?

A half hoop dragon?

I never even considered the tail!

I'm thinking that I need something light-weight but somewhat strong, but that won't end up being weaponized along the parade route.

If you have any ideas you'd like to share, I'm all ears.

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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Love means sometimes having to say ...


Turns out Vacation Week, thus far anyway, has been replete with play dates and a giggling gaggle of crafty craftersens.

project runway junior gluer

One had a pad of paper, scratching away on designs; another had organized little jewels to embellish the collection they were were creating; and mine was measuring the bolt of "silk" for production.

In no time ...

... the time it took to run the scissor blade down the fabric, to be exact ...

Each girl had a dress to call her own.



Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Room service


Ittybit hasn't slept in her room since just about this time last year.

I blamed myself.

Every night since the night after that one, she's put on her pajamas, brushed her teeth and bunked down with her brother in his room.

She didn't want to be alone and the lights from cars and other sounds that invaded her mostly curtain-less room were too much to bear.

Of course that last part wasn't made clear to me until this past weekend when she had her first overnight guest, which, for space reasons, necessitated a return to her pink nightmare.

It was all arranged. She would sleep in her bed with her friend, and The Champ would sleep in his old toddler bed that's been providing overflow toy storage behind her dollhouse.

The only problem?

Putting some lids on the drafty old, light emitting windows.

Curtains can't be that difficult, I've told myself ... while perusing the linen aisles at Target. And yet a few yards at the fabric store will set me back nearly double the sale price of the pretty, glittery, purple stripy thing right there.

Don't forget the likelihood that any panels I make would be lopsided, jagged and generally more shabby than chic.

Still, I never flopped any bargain-bin draperies into my basket. Not when she only used the room to play. Ten bucks is ten bucks.

There must have been some divine intervention, though, because just the day before this dilemma, I'd stopped at a fabric store and bought some half-priced novelty flannel thinking I'd make pillowcases. Turns out the two yards of mermaids swimming in flowers I'd impulse purchased would almost (but not quite) exactly fit the two windows needing coverage.

So here it is ... vacation week's first craftacular project ...



* Measure your windows
* Get all excited that you have JUST ENOUGH material to barely cover the opening
* Then pretty much ignore what ever measurements and fold the fabric in half and cut. Repeat (vertically) for panels
* IGNORE the fact that none of the panels match width wise and REJOICE that you've somehow managed to make them the same length

Thankfully ... Ittybit is skilled with the seam ripper.


* Pin and hem the edges of the pannels.
* Fold over the top edge about two inches, pin and sew straight across along lowest edge of the fold
* We then used white chainette fringe to finish (and lengthen) the bottom edges of the curtains. And, YES, I did happen to have some of this stuff just laying around (but I had to look up what this product was called because it had been graciously mailed to us with some other decorative odds and ends).



Oh .. well, that, and since we have about a gazillion yards of organza from aforementioned material benefactor, Ittybit picked a color she though would look like cool water for the mermaids. We made a single panel for each window that we squished it in the middle of the rod -- a watery filling for the mermaid sandwich.




All together, it took me about an hour and a half to complete the project but If you know what you're doing I'm guessing it will take about 20 minutes.


Now ... I bet you're wondering how well these curtains helped little cherubs sleep?


The first-ever sleepover?

What human child has ever actually slept during a sleepover?


Monday, February 21, 2011

It's been nearly four years ...

We had another baby ...

We moved to a new house ...

We even adopted a cat, Ariel, of all creatures.


And Jed swears ...

tucking her in ...

She is the reincarnation of you, Maggie.

We miss you.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Access denied (nana nana boo boo)

your password

Your new password must contain at least seven characters, a capital letter, a digit, a dependent variable, an illustrative fable and a curse word.

You may not use any of your 10 previous curse words.

Your new password will expire in eight days.

If you are in need of further assistance, technical support is available by calling 800-I-CARE-NOT.



Hold your hand firmly on your buttocks ...

and window shade this message.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Welcome to the nicest room in our house ...


Now, please, wash your hands.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Allow me to translate ...


"I was born in the desert."

My birthday is in the summer.

"I have to get sandals."

Because my birthday is coming and I will need the correct footwear for the sand.

"On my next birthday I'm gonna be 14."

I'm going to be four.

"My birthday is next week."

Because I'm so excited for my birthday.

"I don't want any chocolate."

I would like some chocolate, please. Today. Not on my birthday.

"My dad has the day off."

He's working late, so he's not picking me up. I hope he doesn't miss my birthday.

"I can't drive a Jeep because I don't have a license."

Having a license is the same as being able to reach the pedals. Which will happen when I turn 4, next week, in the dessert.


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Dance of the clipper

be still

Monday, February 14, 2011

Love ...

It doesn't always look the way you think it will.


Friday, February 11, 2011

Sweet nothings

mini me

Do you remember coming home from school, backpack filled to the brim with love notes and candy?

Yeah ...

Neither do I.

I wasn't a popular kid.

Not that I'm bitter.

Of course, thanks to the great land of artificial sweeteners and ersatz equalization, our kids will never be in jeopardy of feeling unloved ... at least when it comes to hastily-prepared trinkets sent in by other people's mothers as per teacher directives.

Not that I'm cynical ... much.

Anyway ...

Ittybit wanted to do something really special for her friends in first grade, so earlier this month we spent at least a year (in Google time) searching Valentine's Day craft ideas offered at various locations throughout the interwebs.

We found no end of fabulous looking projects, however none could meet my two mandated requirements: 1). That we wouldn't spend a cent on supplies, and 2.) The craft could not cause me to pull out any of my already winter-brittle hair.

Hence, we ended up rummaging through a box of fabric remnants and found enough of the same materials to make 16 little sweet-nothing pocket pillows.


* A yard and a half of white, brushed cotton
* A half sheet of red acrylic felt
* Fiber stuffing

* Candy conversation hearts
* Paper hearts for notes

* Cut out 16 hearts (freehand) out of the felt.
* Cut out 16 sets of hearts (folding fabric for matches) out of the cotton.
* Sew the bottom half of the felt heart (leaving the heart cleavage open) to the center of one side of the cotton heart.
* Sew the two cotton hearts together, leaving a bit at the end to fill with fiber stuffing, and then sew it closed.
*Insert note (or conversation hearts) into pocket.

The best thing about these ... beside using up horded material ... is that they were easy enough for a seven-year-old to make ... with a little help.

mini me

sweet heart


valentine cards

So. We had planned to make tiny little notes to put in the pocket hearts ...

But then a friend drew my attention to this

And ... having *JUST* received a copy of her class picture I was like ... Palm meet forehead.

Well, that and THIS is just another reason why I have no hope of ever working for Martha Stewart.

*again with the digression*

So I showed Ittybit and she needed no coaxing. She knows cool when she sees it, too.

Of course we had to change some stuff ... since we had no card stock and our black marking pens are too-thick Sharpies. We used memo-cube paper and pencils instead.

I drew a sentence line and a frame, and also the basic shape of the chin, neck and ears, and she did the rest. She drew hairlines based on her friends pictures and added eyes, nose and mouth as well as their names.

We then folded sheets of red construction paper in half length and width wise and cut them into four rectangles. We folded the paper so that 1/2 inch overlapped, and glued the picture into the crease so that their names were visible and the paper lifted off the card.

Adding pink construction paper hearts to the outside of the card, Ittybit wrote her sentiment and signed her name under the pictures.

almost finished

She's tickled pink with the results ...

Well ... except for Isaac's, poor kid.

"I have to redo Isaac's. I accidentally gave him a bulbous nose."

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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Whirling dervish


I find it almost surreal when he asks what he was like as a baby.

Baby ... You'll always be my baby.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

How about some fleas to go with that wine?

wine store cat

Everyone has a favorite wine store.

Ours happens to come with furry little people greeter.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Kinda random question ...

TV front

So. Just for argument's sake.

You were ever-so-politely asked to blanch vegetables whilst your significant other was out charring fowl flesh on the grill ...

And the only pot not in the dishwasher, which was at that moment running through its cycle, was the giant pasta pot.

You add a small amount of water and put it on the front burner of the stove, turning the control to "high."

A few moments later you smell something particularly acrid, but convince yourself it's coming from outside of the house.

A few moments after that you can no longer trick yourself into believing the smell is a figment of your imagination and you quickly find your way to the stove only to realize you have, once again, turned on the wrong burner.

And that the smell was emanating from this ...

TV back

So ... This is my question ye old wise interwebbers ...

What portion of the "I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU MELTED THAT" pie should the person who placed a black television remote control on the back burner of a black stove top be forced to eat?

Tiny sliver?


or Most of the pie?

Monday, February 7, 2011

He's got the moves

"don't go changing"

And he's got the fan base ...

He's a Rock Star ... I kid not

He's also got a pretty effective stage manager-slash-front-woman ...

I'm not sure they'll make it to their first album, though ...

Friday, February 4, 2011

I hope you get your dreams

hey ... there's something in your hair

Girl, put your records on, tell me your favorite song

You go ahead, let your hair down

Sapphire and faded jeans, I hope you get your dreams,

Just go ahead, let your hair down.

- Corine Bailey Rae

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Fantastical creatures and grand plans

There's just something so intrinsically wonderful about Chinese New Year celebrations. The festivities, parades and lore just take all the hope for a bright future and wrap it up in foil and glitter.

I think the best part of it all is watching the dragon dancers say farewell to the year past and welcome another with such active excitement.

And then I thought ...

"Wouldn't it be cool if ...

"Maybe for next year ...

("I'd probably have to start now ...)

"I could get a bunch of kids together to make a costume ...

"And we could have a dragon parade of our own?"

Because really? Nothing promotes teamwork quite like a dozen or so kids covered in fabric trying to snake their way down a road.

Of course I'll probably forget all about it next year, but I thought making a design plan would make it seem possible:

So this is what I'm thinking we need:

* Two cardboard boxes - one larger and one smaller
* Lots of cereal boxes
* Faux fur scraps
* Some kind of plastic pipe
* A length of chicken wire
* About five yards of some red shiny fabric
* Paint (bright colors)
* Glue

And this is what I think we try to do with it all:

Dragon dancer


Wednesday, February 2, 2011



What do you call the ice storm that lost its umph?

According to The Champ: "Pfffft."

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Pimp my (home) office

my office

This is the cleanest this room will ever be ...

So. Since I'm home ... hiding from the snow/ice/rain or whatever concoction of winter precipitation we're supposed to be getting today.

What say ye?

What color do I paint the walls?

... before i start climbing them that is.