Thursday, April 27, 2006

Another Project

My mom bought me this book for Christmas. When I first received it I just assumed it was a drawing/sketching book/journal with a few words to help get the creative juices flowing. I liked the idea well enough, but as busy as I tend to be, I didn't actually sit down to work with it for a very long time.

After I did open the book, pencil in hand and ready to draw, I quickly learned the idea was not to draw but to create collages, and to "discover" oneself in the process. -While I'm not terribly into the deepness of self-discovery through a book that is basically an organized way to revisit the childhood fun of simple collage, I do enjoy the idea and like the way the book is organized.

-If you've been reading my blog for long you know I like to shop (usually from home) but don't like to spend money, and that I therefore spend a fair amount of time flipping through catalogues and updating my online wishlists. What you may not know is that I keep a small stash catalogues and magazines with pictures that I find particularly appealing -for a long time. I have a rather large collection of Pottery Barn catalogues, for example, because I just like to look at them from time to time.

Tonight I went through several magazines and catalogues, cutting out loads of pictures. Looking at so many pictures of things I like (which is the idea-not to create art, but to make a collection of things you enjoy) was terrific! I'm going to be seeing images of pretty things all night!

There is also the added bonus that I just threw away at least 10 or 15 magazines and catalogues in one night! (Did you ever save a catalogue for the one or two items you liked in all 100 pages? I had no problem discarding the catalogues after cutting out those pictures, and now it's sort of like having a terrific catalogue filled with only things that I like... and without all the prices reminding me that I can't have them!)

This is basic therapy for me. It's like coloring. Didn't you ever have someone hand you a page from a coloring book and some crayons, when times were particularly stressful? It may not heal the pain, but it is a nice way to relax and enjoy oneself.

Thanks Mom!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Why didn't I think of this???

I never understand how people come up with this stuff, and I only wish I could be so creative.

In case you haven't already heard, Kyle MacDonald started with one red paperclip and traded up for a pen... then a doorknob... then a coleman stove... then a generator... then an instant party (keg, neon Budweiser sign, and an I.O.U. for a keg's worth of beer)... then a snowmobile... then a trip to Yahk (I didn't know where that was either)... then a cube van... then a recording contract... then a year in Pheonix (free rent)... then an afternoon with Alice Cooper... and next... who knows? His goal? He is trying to trade one red paperclip... for a house.

He'll probably do it too.

If only I could thinkg up something so brilliant!

Monday, April 24, 2006

So, dirt... new motivation for working hard...

Tonight, after story time, Tommy and I were talking. (I love it!) He has been very excited to garden with me, which is a little funny because I don't know the first thing about gardening, though I have been wanting to plant some flowers since before we moved here. The reason he has been so excited is that we went to Target on Saturday and bought him his own gardening tools and gloves ($1 each, thank you). He asked us all rainy weekend if we could go outside and garden, and he continues to do so. Tonight he said we would garden "next day." I explained that we needed to buy dirt first (never thought I would be buying dirt), and he said, "Oh yes! We have to buy dirt first, before we can garden!" I also explained that we needed money in order to buy the dirt, and he agreed. When I asked where we were going to get money he thought for a minute, and then he said we would get it from his piggy bank. "Ok," I thought, "that's a good start," so I asked where we would get money after all the money in the piggy bank was gone, and he paused to think again. He finally decided we would "just get some," and then he added a few seconds later, "from the machine." (If only it were that easy.) I said, "Yeah, but how do we get money into the machine?" and while the gears were clearly still turning, I could tell he was truly puzzled, so I finally let him in on the fact that Mommy and Daddy have to work to get money. He seemed to feel much better, now having the mystery solved, and again said, "Oh, yes! That's where we get money! You and Daddy have to work so you can get money, so we can buy dirt!" Now we were onto something. "That's right!" I said. "Mommy and Daddy have to work all week, so that on Friday we can get some money, and then, on Saturday, we can buy dirt, and then we can garden!" That seemed to please him.

I now have a new goal for the week. Work hard. Make money. Buy dirt.

It's a good plan, don't you think?

I love having a 4-year-old.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Warming up the Walls

Brian left this morning to go grocery shopping, leaving Tommy and I at home, knowing that neither of us would be terribly interested in the errand. (In accordance with the wonderful blessing of a husband who cooks seems to come the rare priveledge of one who also likes to do the grocery shopping, mostly so that he can plan meals....) Well, about 53 seconds (give or take) after he left, we lost power and quickly started to wish we had gone with him.

Had it been as warm and sunny as it were a few days earlier we would have just played outside, but it was very rainy and somewhat cold, so that didn't happen. I would like to say we didn't need the electricity to keep us busy, but it honestly drove us crazy before long. It wasn't so much the TV; we weren't watching that anyway. I admit to missing the computer, as I had it on when the power started to flicker, but I could have done without that too. What was aggravating was the fact that we couldn't cook a thing or listen to music... or just look up and see the time. Of course the biggest frustration was missing the Red Sox game.

We hung out for a while. Tommy and I called my mom on the cell, and then we played a little. Brian came home and read some magazines. I crocheted while Tommy played and read, and then I, too, read a magazine and started studying for an upcoming licensing test for work. I read Tommy a book and played with him a little more, and then it started to get cold. We were beginning to get antsy, and Brian started to notice things he had been wanting to do since we moved into our apartment a year and a half ago... like hanging pictures on the wall. (Catching on to the title, are you?) We made a decision to go to the mall and purchase some art.

We had been looking for the right pieces for some time now, so we knew what we were looking for. It wasn't exactly fine art (ok, it was nothing like it), but it was cheap and reflected our passion for Red Sox and Patriots, plus it ended up making a big difference in our living room. For a total of $30 (plus tax), this is what we found:

We're happy. Hopefully some day we'll get a house, and the pictures will end up in our game room. In the meantime they add some much-needed color to our living room. We have also started hanging some photographs elsewhere, which is nice. It's funny how such simple things can make such a big difference.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

I won!

I was searching for pictures from Wallace and Gromit this morning, particularly for today's post, when I won on Blingo! It was just a movie ticket, but I haven't won anything in a very long time, so I was surprised. Because I signed up through Stephanie's link, she won too. How great is that? While I haven't seen a movie in the theater in four and a half years (no joke), I might just have to do something outrageous now and actually go out for a movie! Actually, I've been wanting to take Tommy to his first movie theater movie, now that he is four, so maybe we'll wait for just the right one and use it for that. Any good suggestions?

With all the excitement (okay, I know it's not that big of a deal), I have forgotten what it was that I wanted to say about Wallace and Gromit. I will say, though that my favorite short is A Grand Day Out (above). Tommy, of course, likes the train scene from The Wrong Trousers (below). After all, how can you go wrong with a movie that ends with the on-train capture of a wanted penguin jewel thief, where the penguin ends up flying through the air and landing with a quick "pop," inside a milk bottle, which just landed in the hands of a dog who, less than a second ago, crashed into the kitchen cupboards? Nick Park is brilliant.

Friday, April 21, 2006


I don't know how I find time to do it, but I always do. I always check familiar blogs for new posts, and I occasionally (ok maybe more than occasionally) get side-tracked and start to forget that I am not serious about yarn! What? Yes, yarn! It all started with A Housewife With Yarn (no offense Stephanie - I love the blog), and all the links along the side. I really do enjoy reading, but I get so distracted by all the wonderful yarn blogging and lose myself. The other day it dawned on me that I have knit a total of *1* item in the past, oh, 10 or 15 years. Yes, it's true. Now, I enjoy knitting, and I like to plan lots of future projects... just as I have planned to use my new sewing machine and make some skirts and baby clothes... and curtains for Tommy's room, which are waaayyy overdue. I do have some limited experience from way back when, and I haven't lost it completely, plus I have completed 2 projects since late January/early February and am more than half way through the third (the second two being crochet), but I am nowhere near in the league of all these other serious people! Why, then, am I so drawn to these blogs? Tell me, why? I am borderline addicted. It's crazy!

Of course, I don't see anything wrong with enjoying what good people put out there to share, and I am sure I will continue to do so. I just want to know why. What is about you knitters and crochet-ers and your reflections on something so simple as yarn that draws me in?

Perhaps I'm just jealous that you've found something so simple and made it into something that can be faboulously interesting. Yes, yarn has become very interesting to me. You all have roped me in. It's true. I'm afraid there is no escaping now.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

My Last Post

With a score of 5-1 Devil Rays, in the bottom of the 9th, with the bases loaded and Trot Nixon at bat, I had to do something.

It didn't work, though I tried.

Let's Go Red Sox

*clap clap*
*clap clap clap*

Saturday, April 15, 2006

The Lizard is Taking Over

The before picture, once again:
Current size:
It might time for him to shrink because I don't have a bigger bowl.

Friday, April 14, 2006

The Easter Bunny and I

**Important Interruption-Tommy seems to be feeling better today. Here's hoping that continues!**

took a trip to the store today, and we found some pretty neat stuff. In fact, the Easter Bunny wanted to go out of control and buy way too much, but I was there for support and kept the spending in check.

...More or less.

In addition to all the other cool stuff we found for Tommy, the Easter Bunny must have known how badly I have been wanting Wallace and Gromit (Easter Bunnies are like that you know), because he somewhat smoothly snuck that in with the excuse that the whole family might like it.

Yes, the Easter Bunny is a very good bunny.

I'll post pictures of the basket full of surprises after I see the finished product. If the eggs turn out okay I'll post a photo of them too. -I had to go with something simple, so they won't be terribly creative, but hopefully they'll still be pretty. (The fancy egg decorating proved to be too expensive and time-consuming this year. -Maybe some day.)

Oh, and I wanted to buy Runny Babbit but decided it best to save that for another year...

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Still Sick

After a questionable start to the day yesterday, Tommy didn't actually "get sick" at all throughout the day. He was a little on the quiet side and didn't have much of an appetite, but he did eat a little, and by the end of the day he really seemed much better. He went to daycare today and did fine, and he was okay when I came home. I thought he was a little quiet at dinner, and he clearly lacked an appetite (more so than usual), but other than that things were okay... until just before bed time. Since then there have been three or four trips to "get sick." Brian will be staying home with him again tomorrow. I really hope he feels better soon! My poor kiddo!! :(

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

The Canadian Accent

Brian and I just watched the Red Sox game on, and this time we received the commentary from a Canadian network. I may just catch myself saying "oat" instead of "out" all day tomorrow. Hopefully the word won't come up.

More importantly, tonight was not a good night for the Sox, but we won't go into that. Let's just hope tomorrow goes better.


Coffee and Kids

Why coffee? Because I am having a cup right now, and it's good. Brian and I finally settled on Gevalia's whole bean Traditional Roast as our favorite. We still buy Irish Creme flavored grounds from Gevalia too, though we prefer to grind the beans immediately before brewing, since we do have the fancy coffee maker and all. We tried getting creative with Cafe Sperl and Le Precope way back when, but I only liked one, and Brian only liked the other, so we won't be purchasing either of those again. We have tried a few others that have turned out essentially the same way.

Today I made the Traditional Roast to accompany my freshly made banana bread. The only thing better would have been if I could have made the banana bread from scratch, but that would require having bananas on hand, and I did not. It was still yummy.



On the topic of kids, I just need to mention that Brady (my nephew) and Tom (notice I'm not saying Tom and Brady, as that tends to lead to some confusion, what with us being Patriots fans and all) are two of a kind. Example: Brady became upset when we were all at Nana's on Saturday, and he started to cry an awful cry. After a minute or so Dallas (also my nephew/Brady's big brother) held up Tommy's big Thomas the Tank Engine and asked "Who's this?" The tears were instantly replaced with a very wide grin and a happy, almost perky "That's Thomas the Tank Engine!" It was amazing.

Tommy doesn't react that way now for sure, and he didn't when he was Brady's age either, but clearly he has a similar fondness for Thomas the Tank Engine -and all trains, for that matter.

That alone is not all that surprising. I am well aware of the common love for trains at their ages, and I happen to think they are pretty cool, myself. What's funny is that, while Brady and Tommy are 2 years apart in age, their personalities are very similar. They both entertain themselves well and are pretty quiet yet very silly. I think Tommy thinks Brady is funny, while Brady thinks Tommy is fun. They sing together, chase each other, push each other around in the little truck, share their tracks and trains, and dig together in the sandbox. I only wish we could see Brady, and all of Tommy's cousins, more often!


In followup to last night's post, Tommy seems to be much better this afternoon. He is still not 100%, but he has actually eaten a little bit, and he is playing again. Yay!

Progress... Sort of

Here is the mostly current state of the baby shawl. I find myself having to correct mistakes fairly often because the pattern is simple, yet lacy, and it's easy to not realize you've made a mistake until you reach the same spot in the next row. Anyway, I'm about half way done...

The Growing Lizard

Tommy received it as a birthday present. According to the package it grows up to 36" long in 3 to 7 days. Here is the before and after at about two and a half days.



Apparently it shrinks again after you take it out of the water.

Neat! And slimy.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Some Days There Is No Title

First, the latest news...

My cousin gave birth to her second child, a boy (also her second), Colin Bruce, on Friday, April 8. CONGRATULATIONS Heather, John, and Ian! Congrats too, to Uncle Bruce and Aunt Kay on your second grandchild!

Next, and on a much more somber note...

Tommy is sick. By "sick" I mean I don't even want to count the number of times he has (for lack of a better term) thrown up tonight. Apparently he had a normal day until he got sick in Brian's car on the way home... and just outside the car at home... and at the bottom of the steps... and at the top of the steps... and in the bathroom... He then fell asleep on the couch and was there when I walked in. He slept until half way through dinner, at which time he sat up and got sick again, on himself, and then proceeded into the bathroom to get sick a couple more times. I gave him a popsicle, and as soon as he had finished it everything came back up... multiple times. Somehow he is still in very good spirits, all things considered.

I have many more things to touch on, but tonight I don't want to take the time. -Rest assured. I will post again soon.

In the meantime, you can find our latest album here. (I didn't get very many pictures of the babies this time, but that's mostly because I was selfish and wanted to hold the babies and play with them instead. :) )

Monday, April 10, 2006


No, church had not yet started in this picture. That's my Tommy in the blue shirt and tie, sitting next to his cousins Brady and Dallas, and behind them are Carter and Jocelyn, who are also Brady and Dallas' cousins. I don't know exactly what it is about the picture (it has to be something to do with the fact that kids will be kids, and each one is clearly entertaining a different thought), but I love it.

I'll be posting another album soon and adding another post (lots to share), but I need to finish uploading a video first.

I will, however add one more photo...

I will let you think up your own caption.

Thursday, April 06, 2006


Somehow I can't seem to remember what I wanted to write today, but I know I was going to post this picture, just because I think it's incredibly cute. -As soon as I remember what I wanted to say, I will update.

Sunday, April 02, 2006


I just have to mention that we signed up for MLB.TV today so we can actually watch the Red Sox games at home this year! We usually watch the free version (no video, just play-by-play updates) on the computer, and Brian gets frustrated trying to get the games to come in on the radio... We turn on AIM while we're watching online so that friends who get the games can relay important plays five minutes before they show up on our screen. Needless to say, we are really looking forward to getting the games, regardless of the fact that they won't be on the actual TV. (In case you were wondering, a TV tuner would not be practical for us.) -And while we won't actually be able to watch tomorrow's game, we're that much more excited for this season! Go Red Sox!

We also bought Tommy his first glove today, and a better tee, since the first one broke while Brian and Tommy were playing on the lawn. I assume that was what lead to the bike riding. -I tried to take some baseball photos, but by the time I made it outside with the camera the boys had moved on... You get to see the hat, anyway (not to mention my sweet little cutie pie... who will likely some day give me heck for talking about him that way), and I will take more pictures soon enough.

That's it for tonight, except to mention that I really need a more appropriate name for this blog. The true purpose of these posts has become providing updates to family, since our family is all out of state, and to just write about being a mom and a wife, so I feel like it should incorporate the family idea somehow. I just want it to sound right. Suggestions? Shall I hold a contest for my three readers? Yeah, okay the blog is mostly for me. I just like to think I'm sharing with the family...


Tommy on His Bike

Soon to be Godparents

Yesterday my sister asked Brian and I to be godparents to her little girl. We were and are excited and honored! Thanks Buddy and Scott! We love you and your family!