Friday, July 30, 2010

This Moment.

{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.

-Amanda Soule (SouleMama)

Was that a surprise yesterday or what? Well, it is still sinking in over here and I will be able to fill y'all in on the deets as we learn and plan some more. Don't think the usual making, kid, family life posts are coming to an end while we figure things out. I couldn't mange as well with out all that.

Anybody else about to embark on a big, (or little) family adventure?

We would love to hear about it.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

This Blog Just Might Get Interesting...

question- What do you do when your husband decides to become a volunteer fire-fighter?

answer- Oh, you agree it would be a neat way to help the community and you support him. And you get used to the pager waking you up at night and the gear hanging in the hallway eventually doesn't scare you when you see it out of the corner of your eye in the darkness.

question- Now. What do you do when your husband becomes increasingly serious about this fire thing and decides he has to obtain MANY certifications IMMEDIATELY. Then sets his heart on doing it as an actual-real-life-grown-up job?

answer- You know it's what he is meant to do and get used to weeks and months and months of him working full time during the day and studying and training nights and weekends. (I know, lots of confusing "ands". That's what that time felt like too.)

question- Then. How do you handle it when he becomes certified and trained and ready for a paid position and he is offered not one, but two, and he chooses the risky one because he feels it is right?

answer- Even though you aren't sure about it yourself, you gulp and know that you will both figure everything out as it comes. Just as you always have.

question- (Last one, I promise.) Then, when he finally has two possibilities for a great career in front of him after over 70 letters and almost as many applications and tests and heartache and waiting and the one we all wanted and hoped for doesn't come through?

But the second one does, and could be very good in the long run...

...but it is impossibly, terribly far away.

In Alaska.

answer- You cry a little. Feel equally excited and devastated and try to understand those feelings. Then you wipe your tears because you feel so very proud of him. Proud of the both of you.

Then you start making plans to move to Alaska.

Because you always figure things out as they come.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Boys With Needles Are Cool.

I needed a pick me up and it was cold outside, aaa-gain, so a little stuffed animal making time with my bigger boy was just the thing.

We had made Mad Dog a while back and he has taken up permanent residence near Sully's pillow. He is pretty cute. So wonderfully cute that we decided he needed to have some offspring.

Introducing Mad Dog Junior! He is properly stuffed with stuffing instead of fabric scraps. I like the fabric scraps idea but Junior is so much more squishable.

Sully really likes to be in charge of the sewing machine and he is getting pretty darn good. I am feeling like the machine is his main interest in making stuff with fabric because he loses steam once that part is done. No prob. I helped with the hand sewing and he took over with the cuddling and playing. I will never tire of finishing up our little projects and I hope he will be able to look back and remember we did all of these projects together, no matter how small.

Look at how cute and little and sweet JR is!

(For this silly Mama anyway.)

Monday, July 26, 2010

Happy Monday! Up To Speed.

So the computer is running a bit better and I am taking advantage of it. J says my pictures are bogging it down but I highly doubt that. He likes to blame my zillions of pictures when he doesn't quite know what the problem is. It's a mystery.

The past week or so hasn't been slow for us even if the computer has been. We have been making and playing and visiting friends. All the good summery stuff.

Today I surprised the boys with a trip to the skate park. It was a surprise because every time we go I swear that only Dad will take them from now on. I just can't handle it. It can be so frightening for this old ma on the sidelines. Too many wheels, so many big kids, too much speed, my sweet little helmet clad kids trying so hard and Minna wanting to be in the middle of it all, oh it's enough to make me pass out. Maybe I should wear a helmet there too.

Well, my fears were validated because the second my bigger boy stepped out there he injured both his knees in the deep-down-bone-bruised kind of way. He sat on the sidelines and observed for a while then reached into his endless reserves of courage to try that pesky drop-in again. Was I ever that brave? Or coordinated?

When it got too busy and crowded (and terrifying) with much older skaters I lured them away with the promise of the best ice cream ever.

They got their faves and mixed 'em up milkshake style in their bowls. So good. My nerves and Sully's knees were so very thankful.

For reals this time, Jeff is braving the park from now on.

I mean it.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

friday and saturday and sunday, oh my!

(w.w. cheat - for those unsure, this isn't us. but i sure do love 'em a bunch. i took some shots of them and they took some of us. then we had supper. aren't we lucky to have friends like that?)

Friday, July 23, 2010

This Moment.

{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.

-Amanda Soule (SouleMama)

My computer has been a little lazy so I haven't spent much time with it this week. We had lots going on out here though. There will be plenty to share next week; teardrop progression, time with some cool kids, (my how they are growing before our eyes) and some family portraits which we are taking tonight. I may even appear in some of them with a homemade skirt! Imagine that.

Have a wonderful weekend and cross your fingers that next week we will have some difinitive news on the job front- one way or the other, we are ready.

Happy Friday!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Standing Reservation For 5 On The Deck.

Happy Monday!

We had some warm moments the past few days which has been really nice. I am still wondering why it isn't hot like it should be though. I won't worry about it and just enjoy the mild, pretty days we are having.

When my bigger boy and Jeff returned from their impromptu motorcycle/camping trip this morning I was determined to clean up our yucky deck so we can have dinner together outside. The gnat infestation seems to have passed so we can now attempt to bring food outdoors. They were swarming! Did you know that they bite? Never knew that. Needless to say this Nat is happy they are gone.

I dragged all the furniture into the grass and dusted and sprayed and sprayed and wiped and dried. Spiders really like our chairs. I really prefer NOT to have spiders liking our chairs. I wish all the spiders went away with the gnats but they didn't. I can sweep and blast the webs all day long and the very next day they are re-built, strong as ever. Frustrating.

It was all going to be worth it though for a nice dinner out there. Alas, the chilly wind came up and kept us indoors. No matter, because the days of worrying about spiders in your food or crawling up your skirt are gone! The dusting and wiping will be a daily ritual now in preparation for that perfect summer evening outdoor meal. A candle and some flowers on that "tablecloth" (unfinished length of Ikea fabric) will be just the thing...

What do you like to make for summery meals outside?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Friday, July 16, 2010

This Moment Catch Up.

{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.

-Amanda Soule (SouleMama)

All caught up now and ready for the weekend.

Still wondering where the sun is, but we will make do... Happy Friday!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Teardroppin'-Stickin' To The Ribs.

I feel like we have a whale skeleton out here instead of a teardrop frame. It's all rounded and the wood is a light color. Just reminds me of the whale bones we saw out at the beach by Jeff's work, delicate yet strong. I am sure I am the only one that thinks so.

Jeff hasn't been laughing at my whale jokes because he has been very busy doing some tedious, cutting, gluing and piecing. It looks so good. Every angle and curve fits like a tight fitting puzzle. We are getting ready to fit in the insulation.

PLUS... look at the roof frame! Doesn't it look like whale ribs?

(I knew it.)

Below, you are looking at what will be the kitchen counter and cupboards. This will all be enclosed with a hatch that lifts up for cooking time. We opted not to put in a fridge and just use that space for our cooler. I think it will have a little sink if timing allows. We also decided that we love our portable camp stove enough that we don't want a built in cook top. It will be nice to be able to use the counter for the stove or for prep space. Nice to save on those expenses that can add up too.

Of course in between the measurements and nailing, Jeff had time to help build some other little custom masterpieces with his junior carpenters.

This bi-plane is the sweetest thing.

Even sweeter than our whale.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Oh, And...

Dinner was

so very


Warming Up, Winding Down.

It is warming up out here and the kids and I have been enjoying it to the fullest. We have been swimming, bike riding, BBQ eatin' and cabin-sleepin' with Grammie and Grampie and The Cousins.

Good stuff.

The boys are still there. Probably wrinkly and water-logged in the pool I am sure. The little gal and I have dinner date with Jeff and I can tell she loves having him all to herself, when she isn't asking where her "bo-bos" are.

My quiet, late night making time tonight will be filled with the construction of a little dress for the sweetest lil' flower-girl that ever walked an isle. I will have my window open to enjoy the warm summer night as I cut and stitch.

We will be back together tomorrow with a teardroppin' update for those of you waiting on the edge of your seats...

Have a summery warm evening!

Monday, July 12, 2010

When Big Stress Lurks-Post About Your Little Happy Place.

Those of you within hugging distance know what kind of crazy has been going on, and on out here regarding Jeff's employment situation. I am not going into details now, but today was supposed to be a turning point and an end to months of difficult waiting and hoping and planning. But it's not. We must continue the waiting and hoping which makes it hard in our particular situation to conduct the planning part.

So, the stress is lurking which pushes Jeff out to the shop every time and it usually leads me to... my craft room. It used to be the office/craft room but I moved the computer out to the living room when Jeff was on shift a while back. He likes it out there though, don't worry.

Here is the bulk of the craft room. Cutting area and sewing desk which I found in the landlord's garage. He graciously let me de-spider it and drag it inside when J was at work again. Must be weird for him to come home to a new house all the time.

Anyway, on the metal shelving, I have my smaller cuts of fabric and all the pins and goodies you need in reach while sewing. Next to it against the wall are all my rulers. I like rulers. Inside the three drawers of the sewing desk (not shown) I have my drawing stuff and other various trims, plus tracing and pattern paper. My "work-in-progress basket is on the desk to the right of the machine. Which is also right by the door so I can't forget about what I got going on.

Here is a close-up of the metal shelves. There, in the little brown basket is the THREADLINGS merchandise warehouse. All of the items for sale are waiting there for new homes. As of yet I haven't hired an employee to help with inventory. It's been pretty manageable on my own.

To the left of the THREADLINGS stuff is the blue paper bowl the boys and I made last winter and I have all my patterns, instructions sheets and templates in there.

Here is the cabinet to the left of the cutting table. I painted the glass on the doors so you can't see the mess inside. The kids knitting jumble is in there along with other crafting stuff. Our stationary and greeting cards that we save for re-use or collage are tucked in there with our stamps. The boys just started carving their own stamps and I think they will likely be doing more and more of that in the future.

Here is my modest fabric and craft book collection. The bottom row that's hidden is full of books too. Minna likes to thumb through them and say "Oh, cute! Oh!". Little maker in the making. There is an art gallery there to the left and on top is a framed strip of old-time computer labels with my fashion drawings from age 10 or so. I remember my Dad letting me take as many sheets of those things I wanted. I must have drawn a thousand ladies in dresses with names like, "rich-ness" and "ball gown!". Even at age 10 I was abusing that exclamation point. I like having some of my young-Natalie creative stuff mixed in with grown up-Natalie stuff.

And here is Minna's desk that she staged by herself. Notice she is not sitting in her chair even with the best lighting in the room. She is much too busy on the other side with her fingers in the drawers and pulling down books and trying to take bites out of my erasers. The boys spend time in here too even though they primarily use our big dinning room table that is right next to their bigger kid craft cabinet.

I guess when I said my craft room I meant ours.

That's what makes it the happiest... and happy Monday to you.

Friday, July 9, 2010

This Moment Catch Up.

{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.

-Amanda Soule (SouleMama)

This isn't a photo from this week so I am cheating. I didn't post this moment two weeks ago when it happened but I just can't NOT share it. Think I will be catching up next Friday as well.

Enjoy all of your own weekend moments over the next few days!

Oh, and will you please tell the sun to come up out here for us? It is July, right?

Thursday, July 8, 2010


So the boys spent the night with their cousins the other night (and had a mega blast of a time) leaving J and us two gals on our own. I took the time to hang out and do building stuff with J.

Well, I stood around taking pictures and went along for the ride to the hardware store and lumber yard. I did not realize how complicated wood choice can be. No matter, we came home with wood that would soon become the walls and inside frame for the trailer. I wish I could say I helped carry stuff but again, too busy taking pictures.

The next day I went to the grocery store and came back to...

THIS! The distinct skeleton of a teardrop! Do you see it? I have to say I was pretty excited. I think Jeff felt good about the progress he had made after his grown-up job had to go and get in the way of building time. It happens.

Sully is constantly geared up and ready to help wherever he can. He did a lot of drilling today on the frame for the wall that will go between the cooking and sleeping area. Neat! He is too cute with his gogs on.

Of course we have all tried it on for size. It's bigger than it looks and oh-so-cozy. Jeff's Mom is worried that it will feel like a coffin. Not at all! Just plain cozy I tell you. We have decided to forgo cabinets on the interior and instead add little bunks for the littles so we will have more options for sleeping. They can choose tent, under the stars, truck bed or a bunk to rest their achin' bones after a long day at the lake.

Teardrop camping luxury.


TRVFD Annual Pancake Breakfast is this Sunday from 7am-noon.
Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for the kiddos.

Two Rock Social Hall
7618 Valley Ford Rd.

Come on out!