Friday, December 30, 2011

playing along with SouleMama.
{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

12 in 2012

I am playing along with That Mama Gretchen's 12 in 2012 as a way to hold myself accountable for and keep track of the goals I'd like to reach in the coming year.

1. Eat local food. This will include joining the local CSA and shopping at our farmer's market at much as possible this season so that I can preserve food to get us through next winter.

2. Buy used. My husband and I are turning to craigslist and the Goodwill in our goal to try to buy "used" as much as possible this year, everything from clothing and toys to home decor and household items. We are trying to cut down our budget as well as things like packaging and supporting companies/corporations with unfair trade practices.

3. Read Little House series. I'm not sure how I got through my entire childhood without reading this series. I suppose I got stuck in the woods and never wanted to move out to the prairie with the Ingalls family. Madelynn enjoyed Little House in the Big Woods so much, that I plan to read the rest of the series to her as well.

4. Hike! This is an old goal I am revisiting. I want to hike with the kids as much as possible this summer, and have been studying up the Washington Trails Association website, reading as much as possible about hiking with kids.

5. Run a half marathon. This is something I hope to accomplish in 2012, but if I only make it to a 10k, I'll still feel pretty good about it. Running is something I've really never done, but have no excuse not to do since I have a pretty sweet double jogging stroller and a kiddo who loves to ride in it (just need to wait until baby Milo is big enough to join him in there).

6. Become a licensed daycare provider. I have started this process twice and even though I talked myself out of finishing it both times, I still have it at the back of my mind feeling like it is something I need to do. I plan to become licensed, and then go from there, starting small to be sure it is actually a good match for my family (I think it will be).

7. Sew more. When Max was still tiny, I was pretty good about sewing clothes for the kids. To my surprise, they enjoyed wearing my creations just as much as I enjoyed making them. This will probably have to wait until the summer though, when I'm done working for the school year.

8. Spend more time unplugged. I'm specifically talking about the television (ok, computer too). We haven't had cable for about a year (minus a few months when we plugged back into just basic), but we did end up with streaming Netflix on our Wii. Though we spend considerably less time in front of the TV than we used to, I'd still like it to be less, and replace that time with time spent outside or reading or doing some sort of learning activity with the kids.

9. Finish our backyard. I have had a vision of what I wanted our backyard to be like for awhile now, but we have to first reclaim our backyard from our St. Bernard. I want it to include a tire swing, a small patio with a marshmallow roasting area, and some sort of garden space. It will first and foremost include repairing all the damage our dog did as a large puppy.

10. Visit family more often.

11. Dye fabric. I want to experiment this Summer with dyeing fabric a variety of different ways. I'd love to try out some new tie dye techniques, as well as batik.

12. Reduce. I am specifically referring to the amount of garbage my family produces. Many factors will play into this, including my above goal of thrifting, remembering my cloth grocery bags on every trip, and taking advantage of my mom's next door chickens and compost bin, as well as paying better attention to what we can recycle.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

then and now.

May 2009

December 2011

I adore these kids.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

bah humbug

I've been struggling with the "so much to do, so little time" feeling I usually get this time of year. It adds to the hustle and bustle, the stress of not having everything just so, and the desire to BUY MORE! that I feel has taken over so much of the Christmas spirit. I noticed this year that there was Christmas decor out at many department stores before Halloween was over. What's the rush? Don't people understand the sooner Christmas comes, the sooner it's over? How can you savor the present moment, when all you ever do is plan for what's next? There have been so many years that by the time Christmas is over, I wonder where the enjoyment even was. I was so busy doing or making or buying or stressing that I didn't even enjoy it. So this year, I've decided to stop.  Stop and enjoy the "right now". Stop worrying about giving the kids the "perfect" Christmas with lots of presents. At the ages they are at now, I do not want them to get the impression that Christmas is all about toys. I want them to experience the comfort of tradition, the warmth of being together, and the love of friends and family more than anything else. Because of this we have decided to bring Christmas into our home slowly this year, adding something small whenever we feel like it. Last week we cut out and hung "tie-dyed" paper snowflakes and hung a paper-bag chain decoration. This week, the kids each were allowed to bring a tiny seedling into their room and decorate their own Christmas tree. And we'll eventually hang stockings and get our family tree sometime before Christmas, when the time feels right for us. Each time I feel the "oh no, Christmas won't be perfect!" feeling start to creep in, I'll take a deep breath and remind myself to just enjoy the present moment. I also plan to stay away from all department stores from now on. ;)

Monday, December 12, 2011

a little late.

The kiddos helped Karl get into the Movember spirit by last month by donning hand-drawn mustaches for a day (thank goodness they didn't find my Sharpies, or they may have lasted the whole month!).

Since I had no luck in my mustache growing endeavors, Karl ordered me my very first pair of TOMS!

They had special ones for Movember. Aren't the tiny embroidered mustaches great?! Toms shoes donated some money to the Movember Foundation for each pair sold, and they still sent a pair of shoes to someone in  need. Not to mention, they are super comfy and go with everything! 


Saturday, December 10, 2011

the boy needs blocks.

dear santa, 
please bring blocks for my boy.

Friday, December 9, 2011

this moment.

inspired by SouleMama.
{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.
If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.