Monday, December 30, 2013

Champagne and a Pearl

I was a middle schooler when I became a hamster mom. He was the most adorable chubby bundle of fluff that ever was. He was pale peachy tan and white striped teddy bear hamster. I named him Champagne. It sounded fancy and his coloring resembled a glass of bubbly and then there was his bubbly personality.....I could go on and on and on about him but I'll just tell this one story......

When I was 14 we made the most dreaded move ever: Denver to Idaho. My dad was already there along with our big Old English Sheep dog, named Sherlock Bones. That just left my mom and myself along with our huge white fluffy cat, Fuzzball, and Champagne. By this time Champagne was already two and had a well established relationship with Fuzzball.

We loaded up the station wagon. Champagne rode comfortably in his cage in the backseat and Fuzzball, free to roam, placed himself on top of the hamster cage for the duration of the drive. About halfway between Denver and Idaho is a small Wyoming town called Rock Springs. This is where we spent the night.

After checking into the hotel, we unloaded the pets. Champagne was placed in his "travel" cage which was quite a bit smaller than his normal cage and placed on top the room's dresser. Fuzzball was free to roam the room. We settled in and went to sleep. Fuzzball burrowed himself under the covers and slept at my feet.

Sometime in the middle of the night, I woke up in the darkness to tugging of my hair. I thought Fuzzball had come out of hiding and was snuggling up.

I didn't hear a purr.

I reached over to pet him and discovered Champagne was making a nest in my hair. The dresser was at the far side of the room and his "travel" cage was on top of it. Somehow, this chubby ball of fluff escaped his cage, climbed down the dresser then waddled over to the far bed, climbed up the bed, over the cat, and decided to settle in my hair.

I was wide awake after that! I placed him back in his "travel" cage and placed the room's Bible and Book of Mormon on top to prevent another escape lest he decide to go on an adventure and leave us behind. Champagne went on to live 3 or 4 more years after that. He died a fat and happy hamster whose best friend was a big white fluffy cat named Fuzzball. We buried him under a rose bush in a box with his food dish and wrapped in a washcloth.

Now it is P's turn to be a hamster mom. She picked out Pearl this week. She is over the moon. She watches Pearl all hours of the day and somehow manages to sleep soundly through Pearl's night time workouts on the wheel.

Bringing home Pearl.

P gives Pearl treats and we have made several trips to various pet stores gathering the perfect accessories and chew goodies for her cage. Pearl rolls around the house in a ball. J's excitement over this has dulled only slightly.

When we are out and about P is in a constant state of wonder as to how Pearl is getting along without her being there. There is still a week left before school is back in session. Plenty of Pearl watching will be happening until then. Oh, we also have two cats..... either of whom is likely to befriend a hamster only to have her for dinner.....


Sunday, December 8, 2013

The Ethereal Dress {a pattern review}

Living in a tiny town far far away from everything it is difficult to find hip and age appropriate clothing for P. Also, we do not have a child's clothing store in this town and have to drive roughly 30 minutes to shop at a not so great quality or selection big box store. I know, I know, horrible. So, I rely heavily on either mail order from my favorite places or making clothes. 

Figgy's Studio has released their latest children's pattern line and it is stunning! 

I made the Ethereal Dress for P. Wow! The dress sewed up just splendidly and looks fantastic on P. My favorite part is the little detail on the back.

P and I chose the Echino aqua birds fabric I had in my stash. P was sized for the 8/9 pattern and it took all of the two yards of fabric I had. The Ethereal Dress pattern comes in 18months - 8/9 size and has the option to have long sleeves or sleeveless. There is also options for length which include the full length dress, knee length dress, tunic, or blouse. P loves her dresses and we opted for sleeveless and knee length. I do think I will make her a few tunic length tops for the warmer weather. 

 P is modeling for our family Christmas photo shoot.

The Echino fabric really works well with this pattern, it has just the right amount of fluidity without being sheer. The Ethereal Dress could work in a variety of fabrics and would make a beautiful special occasion dress or a simple go to the beach tunic. There is a sweet ruffle on the bodice and the bird print lined up perfect. 

Check out the complete pattern line and the purchase your own copy of the Ethereal Dress click here: Figgy's Studio  

(Figgy's is located in Portland, OR! I was so excited about that since at times I feel I am living in exile on the south coast of Oregon. So, please support Oregon makers!)

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Friday, November 1, 2013

Ziggle Play! {a review}

Wow, the weather has been fantastically sunny this entire month. We are certainly being spoiled!
With all the sunshine (and no wind) J and I have been outside non stop. I have suntan lines where my sunglasses sit on my face.

When I am not pulling him around town to the park or to story time at the library on my bike he is riding his own bike around our driveway or, with adult supervision, around our dead end street.

A few weeks ago a Radio Flyer Ziggle showed up on our doorstep from House Party. J was over the moon when we tore into the box. He was screaming "a new bike! Just for me!" The Ziggle box was a little tough to get into as the flaps were glued tight but we busted into it. We laid out all the parts on the floor. Luckily, we did not need to wait for N to arrive home from work to put it together. It was very easy to do and the only tool I needed to dig out from our tool box was an adjustable wrench. J was able to help put the Ziggle together, which he loved to do. Parts fit in easily and it is not heavy. The instructions are numbered pictures and it took about fifteen minutes to get it ready to ride.

He was off! The Ziggle is a low profile riding toy with an adjustable seat. It has no pedals and is easily operated by body motion. It does 360s, it spins, it wiggles, it cruises, and ziggles! J has so much fun riding the Ziggle.

The Ziggle is recommended for ages 3-8 and for riding on flat, smooth surfaces. Our driveway has a gentle slope and the Ziggle worked just fine, only faster!  It does tip forward when J "walks" it because the wheels swivel around. He has taken a few gentle head dives. A helmut is not recommended on the box/instructions but we like to be safe especially around the neighborhood. This toy is loads of fun for an active child like J. He uses his whole body to move it! He insists his next adventure on the Ziggle will be to ride it to pick P up from school.....he has high hopes!

I am a believer that one cannot have too may riding toys and this is one to add to your collection!

If you want to know more about or learn where to buy a Radio Flyer Ziggle, click here:Radio Flyer Ziggle Info

*I was provided with a free Radio Flyer Ziggle by House Party Chatterbox in exchange for my review.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Ugly Christmas Stocking Swap

We have all seen them: the Ugly Christmas Sweaters. There are parties dedicated to their existence and I am sure in our youth we have all donned an ugly sweater or two.

This season I am hosting an Ugly Christmas Stocking Swap in an effort to spread fun and loads festive joy to one another! Stockings must be handmade from scratch (no pre-made stockings allowed). How you create this is entirely up to you but keep these rules in mind:

1. It must be durable. Your swap partner will want to hang this on their mantel for all to see and it must be able to withstand being filled year after year as this Ugly Stocking will surely become a most treasured heirloom.

2. It must be stocking shaped. What materials you choose is up to you. Knitted or sewn or even duct tape.... the field is wide open....

3. Ugly can be interpreted many ways. This is to be a fun, tongue-in-cheek swap therefore, your stocking must not contain any of the following: swear words, violent scenes, weapons, insults to any religion, race, & gender, nothing political, or nudity. 

4. Fill your stocking with holiday cheer!

5. You must, absolutely, without any excuses post your package no later than December 15th if you are shipping domestically and no later than December 10th if you are shipping internationally. It must have time to make it to your partner's doorstep in time for Christmas. You are not required to ship internationally however, keep in mind an international partner will most likely not be assigned to send to you. 

6. There will be prizes. A Grand Prize Winner will be announced, possibly other winners as well depending on how many sign up. I am still working out the prize details.  

7. This is a secret swap. You will make, fill and send a stocking to someone far away and someone else will make, fill and send a stocking to you. The more information you can provide the easier it is for your partner to create something tailored to your likes however ugly the stocking may be! 

Now, are you ready to sign-up?
Use this form: CLOSED

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Sign-ups will be open until October 15th. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

2nd Grade.

I sent P off to second grade this last week. She was giddy and ready to go back. Our summer had been busy. It included a 9 day trip to visit with family and friends across the country. Lots of flying and driving which translates to lots of family bonding time. Back to school for P is a nice bit of independence for her.

P is so full of confidence and has ongoing friendships with peers she attended preschool with. Our town is small and we frequently see friends out and about. At the park, store, or library we usually run into a few. It is rare that we venture out without someone shouting out her name to say hi.

I don't remember finishing first grade. We moved. Our house was packed up, garage sales were had, things given away or put in storage. Giant crates arrived and what we were taking was loaded. Our dogs were left in the care of close friends and we, along with my cat, made the long voyage across the country to Tennessee. Our journey didn't end there. 

My cat was left in the care of my grandparent's neighbor and my dad took off to New York and then to our new destination while my mom, brother and I waited. I spent the next month or so just hanging out with family. I had so much fun. I joined my older cousins in their classrooms at school, I played, I caught lightening bugs, played dress up in my grand mothers clothes. She had these gold strappy sandals with a chunky heel. They were grown up princess shoes and they had been made just for me! 

When our time in Tennessee ended, we boarded a plane for NYC then connected a flight to Heathrow. It was an overnight flight. They served us food. My brother and I ate two hotdogs a piece! Then we fell asleep with our arms and legs sprawled over our mother. Upon waking we had little busy bags from our aunts and cousins to open, a hot breakfast then landed. I walked off the plane with a cockney accent and we met my dad just beyond customs. 

Our stuff didn't arrive for a very long time. We began school and I was now in "level 3/4." It was a private Catholic school. The gray wool uniforms were different from the red and blue plaid jumpers I wore back home. The children stared at me. I looked down. They laughed at me when I talked. I kept quiet. They all stopped eating when I held my fork in my right hand. I still hold it in my left hand to eat today.

The milk had cream on too, they drank tea all the time and weird cakes with jelly on the bottom, they had strange names for everyday things. I missed my cat. I missed my friends. I missed home.

Our stuff finally arrived. It spent roughly two months docked while waiting for customs clearance. When the crates were finally opened a bunch of our stuff had succumbed to mold. Including my new Strawberry Shortcake purse I had received for my birthday.

The mold wasn't the only thing to take up residence in our personal goods while we waited for their familiarity to ease our homesickness. Cockroaches all but poured out of the crates when the lid was lifted.

I had my family. We are close. I had my beloved blanket my grandmother made with I was little and that was a great comfort. She joined us for quite an extended visit while we were there.

Friends called and wrote, we attempted to stay up late for the Superbowl, we started drinking tea more often, we rode double decker busses and trains, we shopped at Harrod's and Hamby's toy store, we fed pigeons in Trafalgar Square, we were tourists to the Tower of London, Picadilly Circus, and Carneby Street, we tried to make the guards smile, We saw Michael Crawford on stage in "Barnum." I made my First Communion and learned how to ride a bike without training wheels.

We had a little shop up the street from our big house with the green door that sold hotdogs and Lucky Charms cereal. We rescued a lost hedgehog. Santa came at Christmas and we still celebrated Thanksgiving. One night it even snowed.

We loved abroad for almost 2 years and created happy memories where we were which also included touring many other countries in Europe. We had no control over that relocation. If an over seas opportunity opened up for my family today I would not hesitate. We moved back to the states sometime during third grade and I had my first taste of public schools and another happy memory filled time in a place that was still not back home.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Change of Seasons Swap


Ok, Rose & Odin is back form vacation and feeling a bit let down. It is difficult to depart so much fun and return to everyday life and turn my focus towards back to school. As that simply means that P & J are growing up and fast.

I have decided to distract myself from this reality and organize a little Change of Seasons Swap. I think the fall is hurried through here with back to school at the beginning and then a mad rush to Christmas. Fall just seems to be a launching pad.

As a kid I seemed to loathe fall. It stood in the way of Christmas and meant I would be forced to sit still for many hours of the day in school only to return home to early darkness.

As an adult I enjoy fall. The smells, the warm drinks, cozy sweaters but living in the Pacific Northwest it also means the return of endless grey and rain. All the more reason to have a swap to lift my spirits and to slow down the fall.

To participate in this swap please fill out this form: CLOSED by August 15th. You must commit to making and creating a seasonal themed parcel for your recipient and mailing it by September 21st. What you create an send is completely up to you but it must be handmade. 

Keep in mind that our southern hemisphere friends are coming into spring.

This is a secret swap and is open internationally and you are responsible for the postage.

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Sunday, June 30, 2013

The Tide Pools of Summer

One of my biggest laments of moving from a city to a small town is the lack of child/family friendly activities. They just do not seem to exist here and what they do have is sparse. In fact, sidewalks just spontaneously end and not in a Shel Silverstein sort of way, they just stop.

However, for what this small town lacks in organized family activities, it makes up for in nature exploration opportunities. Our Saturdays usually consist of a walk all around town and out to the beach to watch the waves. In fact, yesterday we were gifted with viewing two grey whales playing at the mouth of the jetty. We never saw that in Fort Collins.

This week we also discovered an amazing tide pool spot just south of Port Orford. We have previously found this activity a bit difficult to do with P & J because the tide pools we found were down steep cliffs or very close to the ocean waves.

The Redfish Rocks Marine Reserve is an incredible spot! After deciding we would just head south to find something new instead of just going to our usual go-to beach, we found this. A place where the tide pools seem endless and each isolated pool holds a variety of ocean flora and fauna.

There is no signage from the road. It is 2.5 miles south of Port Orford on highway 101. Turn right after mile marker 304. There is a short enchanted woodland hike down to the beach and then wide open exploration.

While we explored the tide pools we saw five different types of starfish, at least three types of crabs, sea cucumbers, chitons, snails, limpets, and brightly colored anemones. That was just a sample! The seagulls also like to come and take advantage of the all-you-can-eat low tide buffet.

The Redrock Fish Marine Reserve is a very kid friendly place to explore. It is flat and right on the beach. At low tide, the ocean waves are a significant distance from the tide pools and there are plenty of sandy areas to walk between the tide pools so, you do not have to traverse the rocks and squash the tiny barnacles and snails that might be residing on them.

This is a wonderful happy memory maker for your family! If you visit be aware of tide changes and remember tide pools are delicate ecosystems. Bring along a camera and a tide pool identification book too.

If you want to now more about the Redfish Rock Marine Reserve here are links:

If you want to see more photos of our tide pool adventure then go to Nick's webpage:

Rose & Odin is also on FB:

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Sweet Little Embroidery Swap

Lisa at Sweet Little Pretties organized another swap. Naturally, I couldn't pass it up but it definitely was taking me out of my comfort zone! This time the swap was to make something that is embroidered.

I am not totally sure if it had to be "hand" embroidered or if machine embroidered was ok. I didn't check this detail out as I do not own an embroidery machine which meant I had to come up with something to do by hand.

I have never done embroidery.

However, I was very excited for the challenge! Naturally, I created a Pinterest board for some inspiration and hopefully, a bit of instruction.

My partner was Kim from Babes & Brides. She already follows me on the various social media outlets so, it was difficult to not reveal too much!

My info sheet on Kim said she likes pinks and aquas as well as angels and fairies. She also mentioned that anything handmade and from the heart was a treasure. So, the pressure was off. A bit.

Honestly, I was fairly intimidated to make something for Kim. She does incredible sewing and embroidery.

I started practicing some free form flowers just to get the feel of it and planning on a more specific pattern/design for the actual swap item.

Well, it turns out I liked my freeform stitches so well, that I made a new swatch on a piece of aqua linen and stitched up some flowers in several shades of pink.

I then turned this into a medium wide-mouth zippy pouch, using my "go-to" tutorial from noodlehead.

I enclosed a note, a delicious chocolate bar, and a fat quarter of some fairy fabric then sent it along to Kim.  Turns out she loved it! Check out what she had to say:

I love embroidery! It is very meditative and a great way to embellish something. I am waiting for my embroidery surprise to show up at my door and like Kim, I believe that handmade from the heart gifts are treasures!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Roly-Poly Pinafore Review + Giveaway!

Way long ago when I was in my early 20s and visiting my grandmother she decided we needed to sew something for the daughter I may have one day. She had been sewing some dresses for one of my cousin's sweet girls and with me being the youngest girl of 21 grandchildren with no prospect of a husband in sight I guess she assumed she would not be around when I became a mom.

We settled on this pattern:

It was a darling sweet pinafore in a lavender print with a pink reverse and an eyelet ruffle. Bloomers and cutesy Peter Rabbit buttons completed the outfit. We made a size 6-9 months.

I packed it away in my baby hope chest of sorts and many years passed before motherhood arrived. P was born in May which meant her, 6-9 months fell in wintertime and the pinafore stayed tucked away and still remains unworn.

I was pretty giddy when Imagine Gnats offered me a chance to be part of the blog tour and review the Roly-Poly Pinafore pattern! Yay! I can make one for P to wear now and maybe make one for later too!

We ventured up to Salem over Memorial Day weekend and I discovered Greenbaum's Quilted Forest. It is loaded with a super fantastic fabric assortment and they give you 10% off your entire purchase during the entire month of your birthday! Lucky me!

P chose Michael Miller Fabrics in Fantasy Forest and Ta Dot.

The pattern printed and fit together easy. It has a pocket option which I did not do because P could care less about pockets. If you would like the entire side to be one fabric it is easy enough to tape the pattern pieces together and cut the fabric that way.

Either I was distracted enough by J playing around me or I was just absent minded when I cut out my fabric but I ended up cutting one of the back sides out upside down in the Forest Fantasy print and living 3 hours away from the fabric store where I purchased it I was feeling pretty lousy. I dug through my fabric stash and found a fat quarter of a turquoise print that would blend in just fine. I re-cut my upside down piece and blocked out the top in the turquoise.  All was not lost. Just buy a bit of extra fabric if you are working with a directional print.

This sewed up very easy and quickly. It is a great pattern for a beginner sewer or a good one to fine tune your garment sewing. The sizes for this pattern are 6 months to 10 years. It is a good rule of thumb to go by your child's measurements rather than age. I made P a size 7 but could have sewn a size 6 with the length of the size 7. It has a darling little pleat on the front too. It is a versatile garment that could be sewn in a variety of fabrics for all seasons.

This is the final stop for the Roly-Poly Pinafore review blog tour. Please visit the other participating blogs for more inspiration and a whole lot of "WOW!!!":

5.13 Jill Made with Moxie / Stephanie The Crafty Kitty
5.14 Stephanie NeurosesGalore / Cherie you & mie
5.15 Ari Max California / Caila Caila Made
5.16 Veronica SewVery / Tara Girl like the sea
5.17 Nancy owen's olivia / Adrianna Crafterhours

5.20 Ajaire Call ajaire / Sarah EmmylouBeeDoo
5.21 Laura Craftstorming / Jessica a little gray
5.22 Frances Miss Matatabi / Nicke kiss kiss quilt
5.23 Amy formwork design / Kat Sew Chibi
5.24 Joanne Rose & Dahlia / Amanda Kitschy Coo

5.27 Celina Petit a Petit and family / Delia Delia Creates
5.28 Christy a.Amelia handmade / Carolyn Fake It While You Make It
5.29 Bonnie Fishsticks Designs / Maria La Inglesita
5.30 Jane Buzzmills / Kate Things for Charlie
5.31 Polly Jack & GeeGee / Molly Rose & Odin

If you would like to purchase the pattern you may do so here: Imagine Gnats Etsy store

*****This Giveaway has ended******

GIVEAWAY INFO: You can also try to win a pattern for yourself all you have to do is leave a comment telling me a fond memory of your grandmother or another person who inspired you when you were younger.

You can earn an extra entry by liking my Facebook page: Rose & Odin Facebook
Please come back here and comment that you "liked" it.

I will choose a winner on Wednesday June 5th at 5pm Pacific time. Good Luck!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


May-hem is upon us! It seems our family is heavily stacked with back-to-back May birthdays. Mine & P's are 5 days apart. Fortunately for her, she is out of the sharing her birthday with Mother's Day window.

She loves parties. She is a little lover of social gatherings and craves to be the center of attention! She is so much like me! 

She is turning seven this month but I thought I would catch you all up on her birthday celebration from last year. 

P loves rainbows and sparkles and all things girly. For her 6th birthday party she wanted a rainbow theme! Perfect! 

I made her a rainbow skirt, 6 rainbow birthday shirt, and a rainbow felt flower headband! This was just to wear to school on her birthday! Of course, I washed it all and had it ready to wear to her party the next day!

Rainbow everything! Food platters, tablescapes, cupcake frosting..... I am just going to assert here that the rainbow theme is the BEST birthday theme EVER!

I keep the parties small, just at or under a total of 6 girls. This way, I can do more quality party flare. The rainbow party goers each got a felt flower headband in one of the six colors of the rainbow, a mix birthday cd filled with color coordinated rainbow songs, a box full of rainbow assorted goodies to bring home in their choice of color!

I also, covered a wall in several yards of white muslin and hung paper rainbow bunting across it and had a variety of photo props for the girls to play with, which included: mustaches, sunglasses, feather boas, tiaras, and funky jewelry. This made for a very simple and fun photo shoot! 

A bubble machine was on the deck and they really loved to dance around in the cascading bubbles! 

Loads of fun and giggles! 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

It's My Birthday Month Giveaway!

I am having a giveaway over on my Facebook page. Just head on over there and "Like" the page and I'll randomly choose a winner for a handmade surprise if I get to 100 likes by the end of the month! I will ship internationally too! So, "like" it,  share it,  and spread the word! Best of luck too!

Click here to get to the Rose & Odin Facebook page!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Our Town.

Today, in our town, if you have young children it might be advisable to stay home.

I know this may be difficult as school is out today but, please, heed my advice!

Maybe it's the weather, maybe it is the bulging anticipation of tourist season, maybe.....or maybe.....

Maybe, it is "Old Miser Day" in our town where the old misers are allowed to roam free and yell at young mothers and young children......maybe.....

A friend & her two girls were meeting me and my two kids for a fun filled afternoon of play! She lives in the next town over and we were thrilled they were coming down our way. We set a time for lunch and met at the local fish-n-chips place. It was busy, for a Friday. We had to stand in line before ordering. The girls were giddy and full of motion but nothing out of the ordinary.

The first dirty look came. It was from a woman in line ahead of us she had very dyed dark hair and drawn-on severe eyebrows. It was a look as if we had just released the Ebola virus in the restaurant.

We ordered and moved outside to find seating. We located a table at the end of the row of 5 empty tables outside. The first table was occupied by two older women and a young man.

We chose the FAR END table OUTSIDE.
We have four young children and a 15 minute wait for food, of course we will choose this option.

With the sidewalk clear and a fair amount of time to wait for lunch the kids took to playing.

Chasing, skipping, racing.....laughing, giggling, silly happy screams. Happy children, playing happily.

I should make note here that I am really emphasizing HAPPY sounds & play because then this happened:

From the one occupied table four tables away:


Old Lady with sunglasses on her head:

My friend: "Well, we are OUTSIDE."

Honestly, this table of JERKS really pissed me off. Let me point out here, that the food served at this restaurant is all served in a box. If they were that pissed about eating around kids THEN PICK UP YOUR BOX AND MOVE!

Children should not be expected to sit still and quietly wait. They have an overflow of energy, imagination and a makeshift playground.

Did those JERKS feel better after snapping at us? They just yelled for their benefit. JERKS. If you expect a child to sit still & quiet then you should have to wear a shirt that says "I HATE CHILDREN!" So everyone knows to stay away from you.

We live in a grown up world. Our children seem to have ever decreasing opportunities to be just kids. So, JERKS if my child wants to be a dinosaur at lunch then, he can be a dinosaur including all the sounds a dinosaur might make. And if my daughter wants to be a princess riding a unicorn while out running a bumble bee then she can do that too! Their kid window shrinks a little bit everyday. Happy children are a delight.

I don't like mean people.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Kids Clothes Week Day 1:

Ok, we are half way into Kids Clothes Week and I am just now posting my first post about it. I'm thinking I should just recap with a single blog post at the end.

The weather here has been wonderful and sunny. It is hard to expect J to stay inside so I can sew when he wants to make mud pies and worm soup. Needless to say, it has been a slow start to Kids Clothes Week for me.

Day One:
I had this flowy bohemian top that I wore while I was pregnant. Not expecting to wear it again, I decided that it needed to be up cycled to something more exciting and useful. I had thought about a maxi dress for P or maybe just a flowy skirt. Then inspiration struck and I whipped out a darling little summery tunic and headband. I couldn't wait for her to come home to try it on and she obliged me.

Now if we could just get some heat to go with the sunshine.....

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Sick Day.

Both P & J woke up feeling less than great today. J more than P. His little face was pale with sunken eyes, he was lethargic, and sleepy.

I mentally prepared myself for a cozy day of watching movies, snuggling my babies and mentally obsessing about what diagnosis J might have and freak out about it (thanks WebMD).

I phoned the school, made a nest of pillows and blankets on the couch, we chose BRAVE and settled in for the day by 8 am. J was a little shaky and requested some water. Ok, keep him hydrated.....

Then with a heave....the puking began.....and then just as fast it was over.....

Still diagnosing J with a myriad of horrifying diseases....I calmly cleaned it up, cleaned up my boy, and snuggled him back in the nest.

"I want to go outside!"
"I want a turkey sandwich! And a pickle!"
"Let's get my shoes on."
"Can I have some milk?"

It was just 8:30 by this time. I'm still diagnosing J with illnesses that medical treatment can't cure and now he wants to go outside and eat!

Color back in his on....we head out to ride his scooter....I have bookmarked those sicknesses should he fall under the weather again....

Sunday, April 7, 2013

That's My Kid in the Photo!

Have you ever discovered your child's image being used in an online social forum without your consent?

Recently, we discovered that a photo of P was being used on a blog by estranged relatives to promote a book they have written and self-published under assumed names. The purpose of the blog is to direct people to buy their book.

When I found out that P's photo was in one of their blog posts I was very upset. On many levels this affected me. Mainly, because we have zero communication with this couple and now that they felt it was perfectly fine to use a photo of our child to promote their book I was going to have to contact them to take it down.

I waited a few days and did a lot of research about it. My main question: Can they use a photo they took of my child to promote their book without our consent?

I queried a professional photographer and a professional blogger. The consensus was this:

They took the photo and do technically have copyrights to it (they are not professional photographers) however, since they are using the photo in a commercial way (promoting their book) and the photo contains a minor then parental consent is required.

I went online and did a lot of googling on this topic. Yes, in a commercial capacity parental consent is necessary.  I also found there is a Children's Online Privacy and Protection Act that helps parents safeguard their child's online privacy.

Just because an image is out there on the internet does not give people the right to upload it and use it for personal or business purposes. Just because someone took a snapshot of my child does not automatically grant them permission to use the image to promote their product or business. Doing so is morally and ethically wrong.

Watermarks on photos are important.  It is illegal to crop/photoshop images taken from the internet and use them as your own. You cannot take a photo from a social networking site (i.e. Facebook) and use it to promote your business or product. There are public domain websites for photos/music/movies/books that are available for public use. There are stock photo sites for photos too. Sources must be sited for quotes and/or where you got the information, this is English 101 (please note that Wikipedia is written by anyone so, best not to use it as a source). Most importantly GET PERMISSION.

Consent is required to use photos of minors. This applies to websites/blogs that include your daycare, churches, schools, businesses, summer camps, civic groups, etc.... Do not be afraid to contact someone if you see your child's image being used to promote something. Especially if you do not agree with what is being promoted. Do not be afraid to "report" postings, pins, or tweets directly to the social network help desk or the web/blog hosting site. Your child's safety & privacy are more important.

I am discussing this situation as it applies in a business/commercial way. If someone is posting photos of your child on Facebook or on a personal blog and you do not wish them to do so then contact them and ask them to remove them. It is hard to keep up with the changes on Facebook but I do keep my settings set at private. I try not to post face shots of my children on my blog and if I do then I watermark over their face.

The use of internet as it relates to children's safety and privacy is still relatively a grey area. The more it is discussed, reported, and alerted to the proper chain of command then new stricter and more enforceable laws can be made.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Covert Robin!

More handmade swapping! This time it was organized by Imagine Gnats. It had international participants and we were asked to make a secret (covert) handmade gift for our assigned partner. It was a round robin swap. Round robin meaning someone else was assigned to make me something.

I don't know what is more exciting: crafting something for someone or getting a specially crafted item for myself. They are both wonderful!

I was assigned a lovely lady who lives far far far away in a beautiful country filled with rich and brightly colored textiles and food that is so scrumptious and delicious I craved it when I was pregnant with J. I craved it so much that I was reduced to tears on several occasions upon the realization that we do not have a restaurant within this county that would meet my craving demands.

INDIA! INDIA! I get to make & send to INDIA!

My partner has this delightful blog filled with exceptional handmade and beautiful creations.....After reading a few posts, I was feeling intimidated! So, I procrastinated, read some more posts, stalked her has much as I could before I decided what to make....still feeling intimidated....I got to work.

She likes to sew (like is mild, she is an expert sewer) and I decided to make a fabric basket. I used the Pink Penguin fabric basket tutorial as a reference for this. I chose fabrics from the Good Fortune by Kate Spain for Moda Fabrics. I bought a couple prints in 1/2 yard each and the charm pack from my local Forget-Me-Knots Quilt Shop. I was really pleased with how the basket turned out! It was very easy and fun. I think this will be added to my "go-to" gift list. I also made a little pincushion and put an assortment of charm squares in the basket too.

She has a little guy and I crafted him a little dinosaur just for fun. J loves the dinos. J loved this little dino and was sad to part with it.

For fun I punched a few paper gift tags, added some locally made cranberry jelly candy and saltwater taffy. Now, I just sit back and wait to find out if it makes it safely all the way to INDIA....and if she likes it.

What about me? Oh, yes, me! I received my covert robin gift too! Mine came across the country from Baltimore and was filled with an assortment of hand made natural products which included: scented waters to boil and fill my home up with sweets scents, laundry detergent (which smells so good), several pincushions, a hexie needle book, little sewn pouches, an embroidered adorable bookmark, some Old Bay Seasoning, and chocolate. It is a wonderful gift! I love it! Such thought and care was put into making it for me!

Did I mention that all the participants are invited to link up their blogs and then are eligible to win some goodies from the co-hosts for this swap? It just gets better, right? If you are a crafty person and have thought about joining swaps but haven't yet, I encourage you to do so! It is so much fun (you are not required to send internationally) and you connect with so many other crafty people it makes your world that much smaller!

Please become a follower and also, "like" the Rose & Odin Facebook page.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Little Pincushion Swap.

Sweet Little Pretties hosted a pincushion swap this past month and I joined in the fun.

I had never made a pincushion before and I, myself, did not have one. I am currently using my grandmother's little magnetic canister that is stuffed with pins.

My mother had the tomato pincushion with the dangling strawberry in her sewing room when I was growing up. I was very fascinated by it and wanted to eat the strawberry! Her collection of straight pins were dull, just the silver ones with little heads. I would get excited if a pearly one somehow found its way onto the cushion. I would insist she use it on the items she was sewing for me! The tomato pincushion with the dangling strawberry is long gone now.

Just about anything will work to stick your pins in for safe keeping! There are so many cute styles and creative designs for pincushion out there.

My partner lives in the UK and said she is partial to pinks and purples. Luckily P is also fond of pinks and purples so there was a large variety in my scrap stash to choose from. I went with the round design that was was tufted with embroidery thread. I finished it off with some green felt and a purple covered button. I added a little purple flower button on the underside too. It's amazing how much stuffing can fit inside!

You can view some of the pincushions being swapped on Instagram by using the hash tag #littlepincushionswap or visit the Sweet Little Pretties web page for the link ups and stories!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Pattern Testing!

If you are a mom like me then you too are saddened by the selection of clothing that stores offer for girls. Either it is poor quality or it is a wildly inappropriate option for a child.

So, I have taken to buying basics and making clothes for P that are tailored to her style. Sometimes she insists I do not make her this or that. She would rather buy it but for the most part she likes to choose the fabric and watch it be made.

I was very excited to have the opportunity to test two  Pattern Anthology patterns offered in their Sun & Surf Collection. I tested the Carousel Top and the Boardwalk Skirt.

The Carousel Top:
It is a darling knit top that has a sweet little keyhole detail in the back. This was my first time sewing with knits and I do not own a serger (yet). I used a solid pink interlock knit that was easy to work with. The pattern offers a lot of tips about sewing with knits. This pattern sewed up very easy with simple and clear instructions with photos at just about each step. P's chest measurement is 26" and the size 7/8 fits perfectly through the shoulders and a good length too. I sewed this up from start to finish in just over an hour. This pattern is sized 12 months to 12 years.

The Boardwalk Skirt:
This skirt is dreamy. In fact, I might size it up and make one for myself. It is a double layered drawstring skirt with an elastic back waist. The under layer peaks out a little bit with a ruffled hem. I made the size 8 in this and should have sized the waist down. P needed the length of the size 8. This pattern also sewed up beautifully with clear instructions and photos for the steps. The waistband is a bit tricky but in the final pattern two options are given for the waistband. I sewed this in about two hours. This is P's favorite item I have made her. This pattern is sized 6 months to 14 years.

You can see the entire Sun & Surf Collection at Pattern Anthology. The collection is only available for a limited time. See other patterns by these designers at: Go To PatternsSee Kate SewBlank Slate Patterns, and Shwin Designs

You are sure to find something divine to make, sew and inspire you!

Please like Rose & Odin on Facebook.

Monday, March 18, 2013


Rose & Odin now has its very own little Facebook page. So come on over and "like" it.
More fun stuff over there and maybe some giveaways in the future!

And don't forget to follow the blog too!

Rose & Odin

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Great Read.

Seeing a lousy movie in the theatre yielded a much desired preview of the upcoming "Great Gatsby" movie. I was drooling over the scrumptious costumes. Not to mention Leo & that cutie Toby McGuire too.

I had never read the book. I knew nothing of the story just something about a rich guy blah blah blah.....

I started reading the book.

3 chapters in this is a conversation I have with my mother:

Me: "I started reading the 'Great Gatsby'"

Mom: "haven't you read that already?"

Me: "No, this is the first time I've read it. I don't know anything about it."

Mom: "Oh." pause "it's a really sad sad story." pause "I read it so long ago and I don't remember the story so much. I just remember it was so sad and tragic and sad."

I didn't pick up the book for at least 3 days after that. I hadn't reached the sad, tragic, sad part of the story and I was not too sure I wanted to.

I continued reading with anticipation of so sad, tragic, so sad in the forefront of my brain.

A couple chapters later....still nothing of sadness.

And then "BAM!" out of nowhere, it hit and didn't stop! Just kept on.....

And the sadness came. The tragic came. The sadness continued to the end.

Monday, March 11, 2013

The Knight.

For several days J had been asking for a shield. He needs this as he is always fighting dragons and thus could use the extra protection. While he patiently waited for a shield to arrive he would resort to using whatever happened to be within arms reach: a throw pillow, a book, and even his breakfast plate complete with breakfast.

He really needed a shield!

So here is what I made:
I took a pizza box and cut out the shape I wanted. Arranged felt squares over the top, cut them out and sewed them together with bias tape. Cut felt for the back and sewed two pieces of wide elastic for the handles. Sewed front piece to back piece, right sides together leaving an opening at the bottom and turned right side out, slid the pizza box shape in and stuffed the front a bit to give the shield some bulk and some padding when he rams into the dragons. Finally I hand sewed the bottom shut and presented it to my knight.

It measures roughly 13x12 inches.

He loves it but has misplaced his onto more medieval weaponry crafting.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Numbers Game.

J is turning 3 this week and I couldn't be in denial more.

Even though he is not having a party we will be celebrating him! It would include donuts at every meal if we lived closer to a Krispy Kreme! We don't, so instead of donuts I like to make him a little t-shirt with his age on it.

If we get invited to a birthday party for a little friend this is usually my go-to gift. I'm going to share with you how to make one in case we don't live close enough to be invited to your child's birthday and you still want a shirt (I am also happy to make these via special request and mail them along).

Birthday Shirt:

1. T shirt in the appropriate size (I recommend getting a fun solid color in a quality weight. Do not buy a Hanes pack of under shirts because they are thin and crappy.)
2. Fabric scrap to coordinate with your Tshirt.
3. Fabric bonding (used for appliqué) such as Steam-A-Seam or Heat-N-Bond
4. Number stencil
5. Scissors
6. Iron

How to:
Wash & dry and iron your Tshirt.
To get a number stencil, in Word program, enlarge number to desired font size for front of shirt (I usually enlarge to 600). Print and cut out.
Pin number pattern to fabric scrap and cut out. Cut out number pattern in the fabric bond too.
Follow directions on the fabric bond for how to iron (some use a dry iron at a low setting others use steam and a high heat setting).
Iron number to shirt.
Embellish with machine stitching around edge or embroidery stitching. Add any other embellishments you choose but remember to not use little things that could pop off and get choked on by the little wearer.

Your little birthday darling is now looking quite charming!

This is J's shirt from last year. (sniff)

Thursday, February 28, 2013

One Day.

Motherhood arrived on a beautiful spring morning in May. I was so giddy about it the midwife told me later that I was laughing when I called in to tell her my water broke.

P was here. A sweet little bundle of perfection that I had grown in my belly and with the help of medical science, and a very skilled surgeon, was able to get out of my body with relative safety. I was a mommy!

At five days old this happened: "Look at her fingers! Do you think she'll play the piano when she is older?"

WHAT? OLDER? We just waited 9 months for her to arrive and now you want her to grow up!

I was relishing every single second of this baby. Every feeding, every spit up, every bath time, every meconium filled diaper, every cry, every involuntary shiver....EVERYTHING AT THIS MOMENT! I am not thinking ahead to tomorrow let alone 10 years from now! SHUT UP!

At eight weeks: I had been subject to an impromptu baby welcoming party. Which included a lot of nonsensical chit chat and unwarranted parenting advice that always began with "don't do this...." or "you're doing this wrong...." (I have recently seen a onesie with "my mom doesn't need your advice" printed on it. A brilliant idea.)

It was difficult to smile through the party with the mix of sleep deprivation, engorgement and a crying baby that every woman needed to pass around but not to me.

Then the topic turned to "What do you want her to be when she grows up?"

I DON'T WANT HER TO GROW UP! NOT TODAY! She was just out of her newborn clothes by this time. I was sad by this growth spurt and sad that I already had to put away part of her wardrobe.

But what odd phrasing: "What do I WANT her to be?" I want her to be happy, healthy, and always smile, be confident, and adventuresome, truthful and knowledgeable. Always know that I am her mom and I am going to love her no matter what. She doesn't have to prove anything to me as I love her without conditions.

How do you say that to someone expecting an answer as generic as a doctor, a lawyer, or a whatever profession is the most high paying....

She will grow up but NOT TODAY!

Now she is almost 7. Independent, wild haired child with a big smile full of teeth vying for space. Who greets every morning with a "Look out world! I'm ready for the day!" She wears stripes, plaid, and polka dots in one outfit. She draws and writes story books. She excels at being almost 7. She is the best almost 7 year old ever! She is perfect.

I am still enjoying every single second of this child. Everything at this moment.

She will grow up but not today.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Blustery Day Buster

Our weather has been pretty mild here. A few raining days here and there but nothing to keep us from walking to school everyday. I have been seeing reports across my FaceBook feed of snow days and below freezing temperatures in other states. I am not envious.

I am here to offer a snow day crafty project idea to my sewing friends. Over Christmas break I downloaded a free pattern from this website is loaded with adorable FREE patterns for you to download. All sorts of patterns too, boys, girls, bags, hats.....just about everything you could think of!

The pants I made P were the "Boutique Fleece Pants" they are a darling pant with a ruffley flair at the bottom. The main pant was blue fleece and I contrasted the flair with a very vintage retro knit that I had in my stash. They are loads of fun and comfy. I made them in no time at all.

Since we have year round cooler temperatures here I will be downloading a lot from!

So, if you are a sewer (any level) then load up on some fun fleece prints and download some fun cozy patterns and get sewing!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Sweet Mail

The Sweet Pouch Swap that I signed up for in January and offered by Sew Delicious had a mailing deadline of February 15th.

I had sent the pouch I made off to Perth well before the deadline as I was so excited to send it. All about that in a previous post.

The deadline for posting arrived and I had been aggressively scouring the Sweet Pouch Swap Instagram feed and Flickr pool for any indication as to which gorgeous handcrafted pouch might be sent my way. No indication or hints were given. However, I would get excited to see "this one is being sent off to the US." usually about a week later the receiver of that pouch would post a picture saying it arrived in their post and they love it! Who wouldn't love any one of these sweet pouches. There is mad talent out there!

Well, today was my day! My little brown paper package arrived on my doorstep with a postal tag from Canada! J helped me open it and he was very happy to play with the foamy packing materials. I was delighted to find a simply marvelous brightly colored zippy pouch filled with 6 assorted Canadian chocolate bars along with a sweet little hand written note.

This really brought the sunshine in to our otherwise cloudy day. I have hid the chocolates away to enjoy until after Lent is over. I will also add, it is refreshing to read the ingredients on the chocolate bars and be able to know what each on is and be able to pronounce them. Chocolate, sugar, milk......does there need to be more?

Please check out and "like" the Sew Delicious page on Facebook. is the blog

See the assortment of Sweet Pouches being swapped on Instagram using #sweetpouchswap and the Flickr group Sew Delicious Sweet Pouch Swap

This was loads of fun. I've signed up for a few more crafty swaps since!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Strangers & Toddlers.

Venturing out in public with a toddler is a white knuckle experience every time. However, now that I am more experienced with motherhood going out with J as a two year old is not quite as white knuckley as venturing out with a two year old P.

J and I walked to the store in the sunshine to pick up a few items. J in his stroller and he is recovering from a sinus infection. So, his energy level is not as high and he is a bit more sensitive. He enjoyed the ride and provided me with a running commentary of everything he saw.

We were finishing up at the store and about to check out when two old ladies approached J. They greeted him and he turned his face and body fully away from them in hopes that they would just go away. They didn't. They continued to talk to him and attempting to get a response from him. The response came: He stuck out his tongue and blew them a raspberry. Then buried his head again.

"That was rude!" said one.
"That's not a nice thing to do to a grandma!" said the other.
"What terrible manners!"

And on and on like that it went as they talked themselves out of the store.

I said nothing. J is two. No explanation needed.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Friendship Garden

Going to school has really allowed P to grow and explore in abundance. It seems she is coming home daily reporting of something new she learned, a new song to sing, or discussing an author she likes and reading a library book to us. There is also a lot of talk about the daily social activities that happen in school too.

I have a love/hate relationship with this part of sending her to school. I love that she gets to explore, independently, friendships with her peers. Being able to trust her instinct and forage ahead with making friends and being a friend. On the other hand, I am heart broken when she tells me someone was mean to her or someone got mad at her and decided they didn't want to be her friend anymore.

Welcome to the real world.

She had a rough day with a friend or as she puts it "I thought _____ was my friend!" and she went on to tells us about it at dinner with this description:

"The friendship garden in my heart, where all my friends have a flower in my friendship garden with their name in the middle of the flower, well, I guess ______'s exploded because she is not my friend anymore."

Well, as I look back at my successes and failures at friendship I cannot think of a better description. I have many flowers with names in my heart and many bits of exploded flower petals scattered all around
but the best flowers in my friendship garden are the perennial ones that weather the storms and bloom stronger and brighter with every passing year.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Lent and the FB Sacrifice.

After a very enjoyable adult only sushi dinner this weekend where we discussed adult things that didn't involve any potty training tips but an abundance of useless pop culture nonsense and a chat about FB brain damage....I had a fleeting thought.

What if one were to give up FB for Lent. A whole 6 weeks without this culturally inept piece of social media.

Like I said it was fleeting but I thought further as to what is it that I do and do not enjoy about FB and thus led me to to my ultimate decision of giving up FB for Lent or not.

My lists seemed endless on both sides and narrowed down to these:

Propaganda postings, discriminatory religious postings, "anti everything that doesn't benefit me" postings, FB game requests, the bar on the right hand side that promotes pages to "like" and seeing my FB friends have actually liked some of these pages, gloating about religious discriminations, sponsored pages to "like" that take up space in my news feed, ranting and hate speech, statuses that are gossipy.

Pictures of children, pictures of pets, funny YouTube videos, Bob Marley quotes, rainbow pictures, pregnancy announcements, people liking & commenting on everything I post, sharing my world with my friends and family far away, Pinterest party events, silly little quips of kid quotes, stories of happiness, new babies arriving, wedding pictures, updates on life, vacation pictures, people posting "just thinking about you," snow pictures, beach, pictures, pictures!

I know, hardly narrowed. As I thought further and weighed my options between giving up chocolate or FB this is what I concluded:

If I give up chocolate there will still be boxes of Girl Scout Thin Mints in my cupboard on Easter morning.

If I give up FB I will have 6 weeks of happy pictures and fun postings interlaced with the dreaded "junk mail" posts that leave me feeling disheartened to sift through on Easter morning.

Isn't it easier to just "like" or "hide" on the spot with or without the Thin Mint?

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Sweet Pouch Update

Well, I finished my zippy pouch and packed it with a box of chocolates from our local candy store, Cranberry Sweets (which has been featured on Rachael Ray), added a note, and a headband chosen by P and sent it off to Australia.

I wrapped the chocolates in a plastic bag because I had been reading about some very hot weather that Australia has been having and I was concerned the chocolates would melt into a big mess.

I have been enjoying the photos on the Flickr pool sweet pouch swap group. Some very gorgeous and creative pouches being stuffed and shipped all over the world. It is worth a look and also some photos #sweetpouchswap on Instagram.

This swap was organized by Ros at Sew Delicious. She has a wonderful etsy shop under the same name, a FB page to like, and a delightful blog:

Nothing in my mailbox....yet....

Saturday, January 26, 2013

My Best Friend, Coffee.

It seems that J has developed a pattern of waking up before the sun. I mean way before. Some mornings it has been as early as 3 AM. This is not an "ease into wakefulness" this is "I am ready to take on the day!"

This is motherhood.

"Mom! Let's get up!" he shouts in my face and then gives me a big smooch. He wants toast with butter and some water along with cartoons of some sort. I shuffle about and do my best to keep my eyelids from closing for a prolonged period. Sometimes I try winking, giving one eye a rest and then the other, this is more work than what it is worth but it's 3 AM.

I do love coffee and these early, early mornings have given me a new respect for it. However, one time J fell back asleep just as I finished my first cup of the morning.....I cried.

Today he decided to wake up P at about 3:45. This turned out to not be a good plan. P needs her sleep or she is a beast and I can't give her coffee to help the rest if us but I can drink coffee. I drink coffee and it allows me to handle the wild that awakens each morning before the sun, with ease. I drink coffee because it understands.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Bad Words.

Casually walking around Staples the other night, P starts the following conversation:

"Mom, there are 4 bad words. One begins with an 'H' and one begins with an 'S' and one begins with an 'A' and one begins with an 'F'. Can you say them for me?"

Oh, goodness my mind was all a flutter and I could feel my face starting to burn. I will admit that I do, at times, like to sprinkle my vocabulary with said four letter word enhancers but I do my best to not do it in front of my children. And I rarely use the "A" word!

I took a deep breath and calmly asked P where she heard these words and completely expecting the finger to point at myself, she answered "at school" and preceded to tell me who exactly in her class says these words and when they say them and what happens when they are said in class. She also listed a couple other girls who frequently use the "H" word.

Holding back a "What the 'F'ing 'H' is wrong with these dumb 'A' kids today who don't give a 'S' about anybody but themselves!" I calmly replied with "it is not appropriate to use bad words at school or out in public. It is disrespectful and rude."

And with that our four letter word discussion ended. I was much relieved she only knew four!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Far and Away

My parents have decided to seize an opportunity they cannot pass up and move away. It is a really good thing.

However, if you are me then you can both see the greatness of it and feel the anxiety and loss of having them pack up and go.

They will only be 4 hours away. That is a huge jump from being 40 minutes away but still closer than when we lived 2 1/2 days away.

When we lived 2 1/2 days away and one month after we were married my mother was diagnosed, for the second time, with breast cancer. I was 2 1/2 days away and far away from any other friends or family that could offer me comfort and support. It was awful. Being far away was awful. I was gifted with a plane ticket and was able to be there for the surgery and help with the recovery. Emotionally it was important to be there.

It was because of that feeling of helplessness that we began seeking a way to the west coast to be closer to my folks. It wasn't until P was born that we realized just how important the parent/adult child relationship is combined with the importance of the grandparent/grandchild relationship.

We did not have that where we lived. A wonderful circle of friends yes, but no family support of any kind.

We moved when P was 2. The deciding factor was that my parents lived here. Given what I have just disclosed, I would find it safe to assume that we will be seeking opportunities that would bring us closer to them. It makes a huge difference to have that support close by.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Yellow the Color of Cowards.

So, Lance Armstrong confessed to the world on Oprah, that he did indeed dope it up during his cycling career.

I am trying to wrap my brain around why this matters. Here is what I came up with:

It is a loss. However, if he had overdosed on drugs or died during the Tour de France he would have been remembered as a hero. We would be in mourning over the tragedy of losing this great athlete.

We are still in mourning over this but we mourn the loss of trust, the loss of determination, the loss of as a world we came together to cheer in this one man to his victories! He lied to us. He used us. Is he worse than Tiger?

He seems to have no remorse or no visual indications of being sorry other than flapping his lips. We may turn our back on Lance but he will still live a luxurious lifestyle and certainly feel nothing of discomfort, after all a confession should rid him of the anguish and torture his soul must have felt every time he lied about this.

Does he even have a soul?

Who gives a crap if everyone was doing it! It doesn't make it right and I am certainly not trying to teach my children to go along with whatever everyone else is doing!

Potential made-for-tv-movie title:
Yellow Jersey of Shame!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The True Love of a Princess

There is absolutely no way to keep a determined little girl from following her heart's desire into the land of the princesses. Once P's eyes were opened to the world of glittery tulle, flowing taffeta, jeweled tiaras, and glass slippers there was just no stopping her.

Since Merida has been introduced to our world she has become our world. P knows every line of every character from the movie. If she asks you to play "BRAVE" with her, you will be assigned a character and given your lines. If you do not say your lines exactly as they are said in the film with the same emotion and inflection then consider yourself fired!

J has been sucked into the princess world too. He is fond of Rapunzel and often times asks for a frying pan or will quote Flynn Rider: "Are you coming blondie?"

He plays the "BRAVE" parts assigned to him really well. They often replay the scene where Merida rips the tapestry. J is Elinor and knows every line. He then becomes Mor'du and the real fun begins!

Merida often joins us out and about:

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Talk About the Weather

I complain a lot about the rain. When it arrives it brings with it a huge dark grey cover that blankets the sky as far as the eye can see. The wind also likes to tag along, uninvited, and trash the place.

It is January. It is winter. I read a lot of posts about snow and storms across the country. I "like" the snowman pictures my friends post on the Facebook. School closures are always well received too as nothing is more memorable than a snow day to play and drink hot chocolate!

We don't get snow, we get grey. That is when grey decides to show up. Today, it is 45 and sunny. Clear skies over the Pacific ocean. There is no wind. J is playing outside in shorts. I could take a catnap on this chair in the sun.

Red Breasted Robins flood my yard in search of a wormy meal and yesterday I saw an Oriole. This is winter.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

That was a Lousy Way to End it.

I received a message in the morning saying "it's a great day for football!" It turns out it was a lousy day for football.

In the pre-game show, Boomer promised and all but guaranteed that the Ravens would wear out due to the altitude long before this game was over. Boomer lied to me!

P told me these things during the game:

1. If I love football so much, then I should marry it. (If football asked, I would have said yes.)
2. Football is bad for my health and maybe I shouldn't watch it anymore. (I now have the off season to get healthy enough to play again.)

At one point my family was in the other room and I was alone with the T.V. jumping up and down,  yelling and screaming. I was hot and flustered.

Football is an emotion.

Friday, January 11, 2013

And Then She was Gone....

My family moved a lot when I was a child. I was frequently starting new schools and doing my best to make friends wherever we moved.

I was always the one that moved away; not the one that stayed.

It turns out, little P is the one who stays. In first grade she has actual friends. It's no longer just kids she attends school with, sits by at lunch, or plays with at recess. She has little girl friends she shares stories with, plans outfits to dress alike with, makes gifts for, writes notes too, plans play dates, and talks about "when we are in second grade together...."

One dear little friend goes away in the winter to play in the snow but thankfully returns in the spring. One friend, her BFF, has moved to the next town over, the next school district over. She has moved away.

This is most heartbreaking for P. This is a new role for me. I'm always the one that went away, I am not the one that stays. P is the one that stays. I am at a loss for what to say. So far, it's a lot of stuff like "we'll plan a play date soon!" or "I'm sorry your friend won't be at school anymore."

She is handling it well, staying positive. I guess I thought my friends forgot about me when I moved away and I am seeing that maybe they didn't and maybe they were sad, like P, that I wasn't there to play with anymore.

I'm going to plan a play date for P and her little friend very soon!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

She's Crafty.

I have signed up for a craft swap. This will be my first ever (official) craft swap. I am really excited about it. It is organized by Sew Delicious. We are to make a zippered pouch and fill it with chocolates or other sweets and send it along to our assigned partner.

I got my partner details today! She is a lovely lass in Perth, Australia. I have started stalking her....not in that creepy sort of stalking way.....ok, stalking sounds creepy in any sense. I have checked out her blog and started following her on the ever growing assortment of social media outlets.

Once P finds out I am making something for Australia all bets are off! P will take over and insist I find out about all the animals there, what language they speak and how to speak it, do they have princesses, what the weather is like, and what natural disasters could possibly maybe occur there.

I should have my baby back from the repair shop this weekend. Now the big question is do I make something with ruffles or pleats?

P.S. there is still time to join the swap! Just click on the Sew Delicious link:

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Terrible Twos Aren't so Bad the Second Time Around

The closer J gets to 3 the more the words "No!" "Don't!" "Stop!" are in my everyday vocabulary. It's frustrating mainly because my over reacting is inefficient in defusing whatever age appropriate albeit annoying behavior J is demonstrating at the time. Currently, he likes to stick his tongue out and blow.

Most of the time I find his two year oldness a breath of fresh air compared to his sister's. Not that I am big on comparing the two of them, I mean one has a penis one does not. They are different. They are different in more ways than just physical. It is just great to watch them be different and mesh together their likenesses. It is best to watch them be brother and sister, siblings, best friends. The one true person guaranteed to be there.

P is more of an endurance racer at every task she lays out to accomplish and once accomplished, she moves on. J is just a recreational racer and does a task until he gets bored or distracted.

Parenting takes patience, love and the fine art of finesse to know that one does not parent different children the same way.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

No Nap Jack takes a Nap

It is a very rare treat when J takes a nap and I find a few quiet moments to myself. This happened yesterday.

It is sort of a frantic feeling at first. "My child is asleep and I do not know what to do with myself!" Expecting him to wake at the immediate closing of his eyes, I watch and I wait.....still sleeping! Then tip toe out of the room, backwards, and breathe.

Naptime is the restart button for moms.