Monday, February 8, 2016

her tenth birthday

Molly literally opens wrapped gifts. She uses her paws and teeth to pull of the paper. It's one of the funniest things I've ever seen.

What a great birthday weekend we had! Tiring, but very enjoyable. 

I spent most of Friday and Saturday baking. Lily had a party with her friends Saturday afternoon, and then we had some family over to celebrate that evening. 

She was beyond excited about the vanity dresser. You can probably see that by the expression on her face in the photos above. It was her favorite gift, she said, and she couldn't believe that we had bought it for her. 

She was also very excited to receive Miss Dandelion Doe (whom she decided to rename Felicity the Fawn.) I did finish it in time, except for the knitted headkerchief which was only half finished by 11:30pm Friday night. And at that point, I was extremely tired and done. I'll finish it up this week. 

She had a wonderful time with her friends. Ian made up a treasure hunt for them to do. It ended in the clothes dryer where they found a basketful of goodies, including craft kits for them to make mood blocks. She received many wonderfully crafty gifts from her friends (they know her so well) and the party ended with some play time outside and a wagon ride around the property. 

I had made homemade oatmeal cream pies for the party with her friends which were absolutely yummy. (I think Ian had also requested the same thing on his tenth birthday.) And then Lily had chosen a chocolate chip coffee cake for the dessert for her family party. I always let my kids pick out homemade desserts for their birthdays. And, truth be told, I always enjoy when they pick something different than the average birthday cake. This past September when Ian turned twelve, he chose a banana cake with cream cheese icing and key lime pie. Those things are much more interesting to make than a box cake!

I think that my favorite part of the weekend was last night. The boys had gone to a Super Bowl party, so Lily and I stayed home. The original plan was for us to watch a movie on Netflix, but we ended up spending the entire evening just talking and coloring in her bedroom. She actually did most of the talking. It was very refreshing to be able to sit there and hear what was on her mind. 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

everyday things and some very last minute birthday making

I don't know how I manage to do this for every single holiday that I have planned handmade gifts (which is pretty close to every holiday that there is gift-giving involved.) I always seem to wait until crunch time, until the week before (sometimes less) to start the making. I am a natural born procrastinator in many ways. I have always found myself to work at peak performance when I'm crunched for time (although, mentally, I usually find myself quite stressed and cranky.) 

Well, Lily's birthday crafting this year was, of course, no different. Why should I expect anything else from myself? 

I just started making her Miss Dandelion Doe yesterday. Actually, I haven't even traced nor cut out the pieces for the actual doll herself. Yesterday, I found myself sitting at my sewing machine all afternoon working on a little wardrobe for Miss Dandelion Doe as well as another dress for Miss Maggie Rabbit. Lily was spending the day with my mom, so it worked out quite nicely. 

And I have already decided that if I don't finish this little project up by this Saturday (which is her birthday) then I can always give it to her for Easter. We don't traditionally give the kids gifts on Easter, but I was thinking it would be nice to fill little baskets with some healthy treats and perhaps a little handmade gift or two. 

And even though the crocheted afghan surprise has been blown and Miss Dandelion Doe may not be completed for her birthday, we still have another gift for her that she will really love. I will take a picture of it after she receives it. Right now it is being stored in my parents' basement, but it is an antique vanity dresser that I found at a local shop earlier in the year. I know she's going to love it because she was with me at the shop, and she sat at that vanity for a long time, and I could see all of the little girl dreams floating before her eyes. 

And here are some of the ordinary things going on in our home...

 This is what the kids and Brad came home to. Curled up under the covers in Ian's bed. Somebody's just a bit spoiled. 

 Lily took this picture. Our cheese grater has a happy face.

 Homemade tomato soup using tomatoes and herbs I had preserved in the fall.

 A few of my favorite cookbooks.

 Brad is the smoothie king. He is the official smoothie maker in our home. 

 Lily's homemade blueberry jam and blueberry juice. Breakfast over the weekend. 

 Ian has been enjoying photographing his Lego figures using materials around the house. All inspired by this book.

 A book on Michelangelo and weights, of course. Why wouldn't these two things be side by side on our coffee table?