Monday, June 30, 2008

My New Etsy Shop

http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5165859

I just wanted to share my new Etsy shop where I will be offering up my beadwork. For years I have sold my beaded Mandala jewelry and ornaments on my message boards, but after hearing so much about Etsy, I decided to give it a try. We'll see if I can move any of my beadwork in this new method.

Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens

Ok, well, so there are no raindrops on these roses, but the title is catchy. ;) Our good friends gave us a rosebush as a wedding present and it started blooming a few days ago. The roses are just so beautiful and smell heavenly. I planted the bush right outside the front of our house and I hope that it continues to flower for us.

The kittens are growing so fast and I am sad that it is almost time to find new homes for them. They are all so sweet and playful. They have wonderful personalities, so lovey. The one pictured below is the mischevous one.







Saturday, June 28, 2008

Giggles, Squeals and Skinned Knees

The big slumber party was a success despite the fact that all but one of the girls ended up skinning their knees in the driveway. (Thus proving my reasoning for my belief that flip flops should be saved for beach-wear or poolside, but I digress.....) For dinner, they all made their own pizzas and loved eating the results. Afterwards, we had a sundae-bar with a lot of fixings. This morning, the girls each got a cloth bag and they all went around and autographed them on one side. On the other side, they got to paint whatever they wanted.

Some nice artists, huh?



Of course, there is no resisting the dirt pile. Even Abby, the neighbors smiling dog, got in on the fun.



Friday, June 27, 2008

Friday Morning Run-Down

  • Outside My Window...I hear the morning sing of all of the birds.
  • I am thinking...about what to serve as snacks for tonight's slumber party.
  • I am thankful for...the fact that we live less than ten minutes from my very favorite beach. On Tuesday, we went for our first beach-day of the season and it was just so great. The beach is quiet, never too busy, has some shade and lots of sand for diggin in.
  • From the kitchen...I'm working on my first cup of coffee of the day and have my beads set up on the little work-space penninsula. I'm behind on a couple of orders due to a busy week and need to get some things done and mailed out today.
  • I am wearing...a purple tee, capris and a wedding ring. ;)
  • Around the house...the girls are a buzz with excitment over their very first slumber party happening tonight.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A Truly Wonderful Day!

Yesterday, we took the girls to an amusement park up near Rochester called Seabreeze. It was pretty much the perfect day, in so many ways. Due to the Rochester area schools still being in session, the park was relatively empty. We didn't have to wait more than 10 minutes for any rides, and for many rides, there was no wait at all. The weather man called for chance of scattered showers, but we had nothing but blue skies and sun. It was the perfect temperature, not too hot at all but hot enough for Nico and Kaya to spend some time at the water attractions. We were there from the time the park opened at 11am and stayed until the last ride at 10pm. Jay and I thought it was so cool that the girls rode the same kiddie rides that we did as children. Last year, Luna wasn't walking yet so she could only ride the carousel and train. This year she was able to ride on all of the kiddie rides and she LOVED them. She went on the little cars at least 20 times. She also learned how to say "again" and "now" while we were there. "Cars again, Mama?" "More horsies now, Dada?" The teacups were a bit too spinny for her so she was saying "Pups with Dada, whooooa!"



I promise, she did have fun on the rides, she was just sort of spacey at times with all of the stimulation and so many things to see and hear.


Nico and Kaya loved the little wooden rollercoaster called The Bobsleds. They were a favorite of mine when I was younger and I still love them!











Nico is a big fan of the Jackrabbit, which is (I believe) the second oldest working rollercoaster in the U.S.
























Monday, June 23, 2008

"You may kiss the bride!"

Thanks to my sister, Stacy, for getting a good pic of the "big kiss", our first as Husband and Wife.

I'm a Mrs.!!

Our wedding on Saturday was a wonderful and fulfilling day. We were joined by some of our closest friends and family as well as some members of our small church. The girls were brimming with excitement, wearing fancy dresses and carrying bouquets of flowers brought by their Grandma Rita and Grandpa John. As the processional music started and we lined up to walk to the front of the church, Luna Blue decided quite suddenly that she'd rather play with a wooden burger and carrot. Thankfully, at the last second, she cooperated and walked down the aisle, stealing the show and taking the pressure off of my Mom and I as we made our way in.

I had to laugh because Jay was cool as a cucumber, right up until we were in front of the church. At that point, I was no longer nervous but he was trembling and rubbing my hand with his thumb so much that I just about lost feeling in one spot and thought I might lose some skin as well.

The ceremony was really nice. We had music thanks to our friend who is a guitarist, and a girl from our church who is just 14 and has the voice of an angel. I choked up a bit when it came time for me to say the vows, but managed to make it through. Like many told me, it seemed surreal to be actually doing it. It was amazing to kiss my husband at the end of the ceremony. My husband. :)

Directly following the ceremony, Jay took a few minutes to give our testimony about our journey in Faith and how we came to praise God. It was a really nice way to end everything. And then we all gathered for snacks and a yummy cake brought by my Mom.

I actually didn't get any pics of the day besides the one at the end of my girls TOTALLY crashed out on the way back home. My Mom's camera was on a strange setting and all of the pics she took came out blurry, but I heard a lot of cameras snapping as Jay and I had our first kiss as husband and wife so I imagine we will have a few pictures to share soon.

Once we left the church, we came home and spent the afternoon with some of our good friends and their beautiful children.

Jay and I are still getting used to wearing rings all of the time, but we're amazed at how different our relationship feels after taking this step that we once throught was SO unnecessary.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Pre-Wedding Jitters

The wedding is the day after tomorrow and while I am very excited, I am also starting to get nervous. I am not too fond of being the center of attention and these scenarios keep playing in my head. What if I can't get the words out? What if I start bawling like a baby? Or you know how you see the clips on America's Funniest Videos, what if one of us passes out or throws up? :lol: Hopefully, hopefully, this wedding will go off without a hitch. Hopefully I don't totally embarrass myself up there.

My girls are all very excited. Nico is looking forward to wearing dangly earrings and holding one of the rings. Kaya wants to be all fancy and I think she'd probably do a cartwheel up the aisle if it weren't for wearing a dress. Luna keeps saying, "Mama, Dada, WEDDING!" and we'll see if she'll cooperate during the ceremony of if she'll be sticking her hand down the front of my dress asking for nanas. Hahaha.

Well, I've got a lot to get done today. Try to get past my jitters and remember the most important thing. In just 2 days I will me Mrs. Wright. ;)

Friday, June 13, 2008

TGIF

You know it is a good day when you get visited by a Hooker. ;) No, I don't mean one of *those* Hookers. My friend, Branwyn, of The Mad Hooker, sent me a lovely surprise package that was waiting in the mail for us today. She Made this lovely crocheted jester hat for Luna that also came with a doll sized version. It is hard to tell because my model is so quick, but there are these adorable tassles on the sides that really make the hat. Soooo cute! Branwyn also included a handmade dolly blanket with appliqued hearts and hands in the ASL formation for "I love you" and the words "All You Need is Love" embroidered on it. Just an amazing gift. These items will be treasured, for sure. Thank you so much, Branwyn!! During dinner, we had quite the downpour and the girls wanted to go out when they were done eating. The driveway has a few puddles and at first they girls just threw rocks into them and pretended to fish.
Then, Luna kept saying, "Get muddy, Mama?? In, Mama?" and I finally relented to the fact that kids are washable after all.


As I type, the girls are all out there, barefoot and covered in mud.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Day for Play

This morning, we were able to stop at a playground for a few minutes before a nasty storm rolled in.

The kittens are starting to be playful. It is hard to believe that they were just barely crawling 5 days ago. I really think that Mama kitty wasn't making very good milk because she was so scrawny. Now that she is getting enough food, I think her milk is doing a much better job nourishing the babes. Did I mention how cute they are? They are Cuuuuuuute!

video

Monday, June 9, 2008

Monday Run-Down

Cooling off. The "say cheese" face.



  • Outside My Window...I am hearing the song of the goldfinches and the slight breeze as it blows through the trees. I see hummingbirds zipping back and forth to the feeders.



  • I am thinking...that I may want a cup of coffee before heading out for gymnastics.



  • I am thankful for...how easy it has been for Jay to give up cigarettes so far. He hasn't been aggitated in the least, what a blessing!



  • From the kitchen...I don't plan to do any cooking today because it is hot. I will give the girls a cold plate of carrots, cauliflower, grape tomatoes and cheese before we head out in a couple of hours.



  • I am wearing...a brown tanktop, cargo capris and brown crocs. I will change to a wrap skirt before we go.



  • I am reading...a few different books on homeschooling.



  • Around the house...Kaya and Luna are excited about the prospect of going to Aunt Stacy and Uncle Joel's house after the gym. The pool is open and somewhat warm and the swim bag is packed. Luna should go down for a nap here in a few minutes if she is going to get a good rest before we go.



  • One of my favorite things from today...is a sweet text message from Jay.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

First Steps

Yesterday the babies were belly crawling to get around and today they're trying out the walking thing. Aw, talk about cute. I think we're in trouble here. Try as I might, I am falling in love with these little sweeties. I mean, I think it would be pretty hard to look at this kind of cuteness and not get all mushy.

video

Mama kitty is filling out a bit and you can feel less bones when petting her. I had two cans of wet food in the cupboard and have been mixing some in with her dry food. She got some leftover scrambled eggs today, too.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Don't Tell Jay.....I Have a Favorite

Go ahead, say it with me.... Awwwwwwwwwwww! Jay is in the process of quitting cigarettes again, so I was just a little worried about telling him of our newest additions last night. Thankfully, the animal lover won out over the nicotine withdrawl and he was just fine and said that I did the right thing by rescuing the cats. He agrees that we can't keep any of them seeing as we already have four cats, but it is hard to resist those sweet little babies. I am especially smitten with the grey striped kitten with the white belly.

In other news, today it is sweltering in N.Y., our first day in the 90's this year. That means it is time to break out the ol' washtubs so the girls can cool down a bit. Some people have big fancy pools, but we've gotten years of use out of these washtubs and they do the trick on a day like today.





Thursday, June 5, 2008

Fur Babies

We were driving home from town this morning when I happened to notice something on the side of the road. I slowed down and realized it was a tiny kitten. I pulled ofer and picked it up and called for the Mama when a small, skinny Mama came out of the grasses with another baby in her mouth. This was pretty far from any surrounding houses, but I put the baby I had under the bush where the Mama took the other baby and we went to the closest houses to see if the Mama belonged to anyone. No one claimed her and one said she was pretty sure she had seen a stray, grey cat around their house. I debated back and forth on what to do and ran home to put the soymilk in the fridge and try to come up with a gameplan. Should I go back and get them or not? Well, I thought it over and asked the ladies on my board who all said that they would go back and get the cats. All I could think was, if I didn't, those little road-colored cats would probably end up dead.

We headed out and found them again easily. This time, I was able to partially crawl under the pricker bush and find four babies. The Mama didn't like the car but luckily it only took a few minutes to get home. When I set out food, she wolfed down about 1 1/2 cups before she came up for air. Mama is all boney, though the babies look healthy. I am trying to find a local shelter that will take the bunch. For now, they will be safe and fed in our spare, unfinished office room.



Dang, they sure are cute. We don't need any more cats..... We don't need any more cats.... We don't need any more cats...... (Gotta keep telling myself that!)

Wednesday, June 4, 2008
















Luna Sings for Grandma

video

Just a Few Thoughts About Education

There are quite a few reason why we decided that homeschooling our girls was the right choice for us. While I am not going to get into all of them here, I will talk about just a few.

First of all, as a child who was categorized as "gifted" from the first few weeks of school, I found it to be a curse of sorts. While the rest of my Kindergarten classmates were involved in arts and crafts, I would get pulled out of class to take reading tests. To the adults, it was a big deal that I could read at a third grade level. To me, it was a big deal to miss out on the fun and to feel different. I can also remember one specific time in Kindergarten when I was punished for something that was so innocent. We would have word lists to learn and then would take Mastery Tests where we had to read our new words. The words were painfully easy to me and I challenged myself by trying to memorize the whole list in order. One day, one of the little Amish girls in our class was taking her verbal test and struggling. As I walked by, I remembered feeling bad for her and quietly sang the list I had memorized in an effort to help her. I was horrified and embarassed when our teacher suddenly turned on me, yelled at me and made me go sit in the cloak room for what seemed like hours. These experiences, among others in my first years of elementary school only served to teach me to hold back. I learned that I shouldn't try my hardest, or else I might be made to feel different, I might miss out on the "fun stuff", the teachers might expect too much of me. It was clear to me early on that Kaya is a very gifted child. She would write her name when she was two and was reading simple words when she was three. Now, at age six, even 1st grade material seems easy to her and she is reading chapter books. We can work with her, at her ability level, without making her feel odd or pushed and I like that.

Socialization is one word you hear a lot when talking about homeschooling. Many people seem to have this idea that children who learn at home do not have opportunities to socialize. I find this funny because the one thing that was on every one of my elementary school report cards was a negative comment about my desire to socialize. When I spent time talking with the child next to me, I would get my desk moved to a new location.

My girls have plenty of opportunities for socialization and not just with children their own age. We go to Story Time at the library, take gymnastics, they socialize at church and as we run errands. They have children of all ages that they consider friends. There are playdates and sleep overs galore.

Luna is asking me to come and play with her, so my blogging time is over for now. Of course, I have more that I'd like to say but it will have to wait for another time.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Not Suitable for the Snake-Squeamish

Consider this fair warning, if you do not like snakes, you might want to scroll by this post as quick as you can.

I just went out to check some clothes I had hanging on the line. I noticed two of our cats were prowling around, but I didn't see anything out of the ordinary. Then I heard something move right next to my foot and looked down to see a 3 + foot long Eastern Milk Snake. I ran in to get my camera so I could snap a few pics to make it easier to identify if he slithered away. The way he was shaking his tail made me think for a minute that it might be a juvenile Rattlesnake or something. Thanks to high-speed internet and Google, it only took a minute to discover that it is a non-poisonous snake.
I am not really afraid of snakes, I've had them as pets, but I wasn't too keen on the look this guy gave me when I tried to move him along with a stick. Then, at one point, I came outside to see one of our cats harassing the poor thing and it then proceeded to climb up in a small sapling. He's still there now. Not sure on how he plans to get down, but I am not going to be helping him out.




A Little Monday Morning Cuteness

I took a little video this morning of Luna playing with her Calico Critters. I just love watching her as she gets drawn into a world of make-believe and pretend. She tends to make these cute little voices when she plays and she will set the animals up and count them and name them. video

Today is sunny and looks like it will be nice and warm. Mondays tend to be a bit hard on Kaya, adjusting to life without her big sister. Especially when Nico will be gone for 12 days in a row. I need to work a bit harder to keep Kaya active and distracted, so after she does a little learning this morning, I hope we can head out for a nice walk. Gymnastics is also this afternoon and if the weather holds out, I may take the girls to a playground before class. With the rising price of gas and food tapping our budget, we haven't been making those impromptu runs to local playgrounds when the mood strikes us. Now, I am only leaving the house once or twice during the week and lumping as many errands together as I can.

On a sad note, our little window-tapping Chickadee is no longer. :( Somehow the little guy must have gotten in an open window when we were gone and I came home to the crime scene. Feathers everywhere and a dead little Chickadee in the bedroom. I held out hope that perhaps it was just a random bird and not the friendly little buddy who would tap-tap-tap on our windows every day. Unfortunately, the windows have been quiet ever since. I am sad about that.

On a positive note, little Serenity is now back home. You can see updates to her journey with battling Leukemia at http://www.liftingupserenity.com

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Weekend In Review

All in all, it was a nice weekend. Turns out the weatherman was wrong, he predicted it would be rainy from Friday night straight through the weekend. We got some showers briefly Saturday morning and about 10 minutes worth in the later afternoon and that was it. Friday's are usually pretty fun because we get Nico back and we can just be a happy family again. Friday night, I snapped a pic as Jay and the girls were in the new side yard. Kaya is drawn to that dirt pile like a moth to a flame.
Saturday, we went to a picnic and had a great time. Well, I pulled a "Bad Mom" moment and had the girls all wear pants because it was cloudy and raining when we headed out, but the rain soon left and it got HOT. I should have remember to bring shorts and tees for them, but they braved the weather and still managed to have fun. Luna and I left around 3 or 4 because she didn't get a nap in and I also forgot her stroller, which she probably would have fallen asleep in. About 4 miles down the road, she was out already and I laughed to see her hugging my water bottle like it was some sort of cuddly toy. (I pulled right over when I saw her chest clip had gotten pushed down by the bottom of the bottle, just to reassure any of my Mama friends that I *did* notice and adjust. ;) )


Jay and I are getting married in three weeks and we had to make the decision to really scale down the number of wedding guests and cancel the post-wedding party due to time and money constraints. Right now, as you can see, our yard is dirt and we don't have time to get grass seed going in order to host a party here. The prospect of getting something planned out was really starting to stress me out at a time when even filling up the gas tank gives me a bit of an anxiety attack. So, our focus has switched to the ceremony and its importance. We can wait for a party, we can wait for rings, it is the commitment that matters right now. We're thinking we may shoot for having a party here in late August, instead.