Sunday, January 31, 2010


Yes, that's another foot of snow (give or take) logged for Southern Maryland, and we're only at the end of January! It is COLD here and the entire day's snow was of the perfectly dry and fluffy variety. Winds last night made some 2-foot-plus drifts. I'm impressed!

I've been short on blog material lately because my main projects are gifts - completed as of today and about to be sent off. I'll debrief on those in a week or so. But in unloading the snow pictures from the camera I found a couple of other activities worth documenting:

Amy has been requesting "giants" so on Monday I successfully put together a whole giant family and she was quite pleased. Then she knocked them over. Oh, and did I mention the extreme lack of free time resulting from a certain someone trying to convince me that naptime is for babies? I had been reluctantly accepting the change, but as the week went on our sweet cooperative daughter was transformed into the Abominable NO Monster and life got a little ugly. Yesterday we forced a nap on her, and she has been a changed child since. She's napping again today, after only minor protest, and I think we stand convinced that getting her down mid-day is still worth the work, even if it means twirling her around her bedroom to a spirited singing of "Winter Wonderland" to get her to fall asleep. Really.

Oh, and Don and I finally finished a jigsaw puzzle! He bought this for me for our FIRST Christmas (we weren't even engaged yet). We made a half-hearted attempt at it when we were first married, then it languished for a good three years or so. Last summer we rigged up a box to fit the finished puzzle, allowing for transport away from cats and small fingers. This was the breakthrough we needed, and after many evenings of work spanning many months, we finally completed it. The picture reminds us of a real-life place where we used to canoe in our dating days.

So that accounts for some of our time in what has been a fairly calm and relaxing month of January. Happy Winter!

Monday, January 18, 2010


We made the switch! Amy is now sleeping in her big-girl, twin-size bed. We've been talking about this for quite awhile and Amy has been tremendously excited about the idea. With the travel and busyness of the holidays behind us and plenty of time before baby #2 arrives, this seemed like a good time to give it a whirl.
So far, so good!

We did buy a frame, but it made the bed just a tad too high, so for now the mattress set is on the floor and that seems to be working out very well.

Making the switch involved some minor room reorganization - moved around the dresser and bookcase, put the bed where the crib was, and crib on the opposite wall (in case it was still called for - it hasn't been). The wicker rocker is more toward the middle of the room now, under the window, making for an even better bedtime reading area. I'm totally in love with the blue coverlet - from the Christmas Tree Shop, no less, and the Winnie the Pooh fleece throw I whipped together (from a kit). Amy's room is now so snug and cozy - she absolutely loves it.

Of course the furry ones are also quite fond of the new bed. Feline company is very cute until it's 5 am and I hear "Ollie is chewing my toes!" from down the hall.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Waiter, There's a Monkey in My Tea!

Amy invited me to a tea party and this is what I was served:

That would be a whole barrel full of little green monkeys in the teapot. Oh, the mind of a two-year-old!

In other news, finished the doll hat project. The purple one from my previous post didn't make the cut - too dark. This falls under the category of totally inconsequential projects that I am going to be looking back on in 20 years saying "how did I have that kind of time on my hands?" But really, these were so quick, and somehow so satisfying.

And finally, just for fun, kitties caught in the act of napping on the same surface:

With all the Christmas stuffed animals, and all the potato heads, and the rumpled pillows... Clutter, what clutter?

Friday, January 8, 2010

Small Projects

I really do enjoy January quite a bit. I always think of the month as clear and cold and sunny, and I feel as though I can see everything with fresh eyes. Don and I have already done some serious purging of books and clothes this week, and the kitchen cabinet contents are scheduled for the chopping block next. All this clearing out (and the peaceful feeling of having the Christmas rush behind me) leads toward much inspiration for whipping off some small projects and general improvements.

First up, since I became an expert at the crocheted hat before Christmas I decided to make a hat for each of Amy's baby dolls. This is the second one in progress. Each doll has a slightly different sized head so some fitting is necessary, but that aside each takes no more than 30 minutes. My kind of project.

Today Amy and I went to Michaels and I found just the basket to cure the case of hives I was getting each time I walked past the heaped-up-tumbling-over pile of hats and mittens on top of the icebox near our front door. It is a constant battle to keep this surface free for use for those in-transit things like bills to mail or library books to return. Winter schtuff had completely taken over and it was making me crazy. Happily, baskets were 50% off today, so for a mere $1o I seem to have solved this problem.

The top of this book shelf is currently pleasing me so much I had to take a picture. Pre-Christmas it was getting totally overrun with very uninteresting knick-knacks. Cleared them all for Christmas decorations and opted to just put a few back. Much better. New addition: Very finely crafted wooden pencil holder from my very talented brother. Desk space is at a premium, so instead of pencils I found some pretty little (fake) flowers for it and it is a display piece for now. I think it's just right.

This rug is not terribly interesting but I had to include it because it was my first reasonably successful attempt at crocheting in the round without it turning into a hat. I increased rather randomly but it seemed to work out. This was made with all the leftover yarn from aforementioned Christmas hat projects - it's all Lion Brand "Wool-Ease Thick-and-Quick." Really liked working with it! I put this rug over the seat of the rocking chair that Ollie sleeps on to mitigate the fuzz-to-butt transfer that was becoming a problem for any humans who wished to sit in the chair.

And last but certainly not least, the most important small project of them all...

... the baby that is being miraculously constructed inside of me while I sit here eating Christmas cookies. I had my 20-week ultrasound yesterday and got a good long look at the little one, and even a few 3D (or do they call it 4D?) views. The tech couldn't get me a clear face picture because someone kept putting his or her hands in the way. Oh, and yes, we are taking the old-fashioned option on this one - resisted temptation and decided not to find out the baby's gender. We did find out with Amy, and were glad we did, but thought we'd try it the other way for this one.

While I still have to wait a week or two for my doctor's visit to go over the particulars and make sure everything really does look okay (those ultrasound techs are annoyingly tight-lipped), we were thrilled to really watch this little baby and know that everything is progressing smoothly. How marvelous!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Christmas in Review

We're back in town after a wonderful Christmas trip up north to see the family. Today has been the type of day during which I cross one thing off the list and promptly write down two more, so a full review of Christmas festivities, as well as some thoughts on the New Year will have to wait their turn.

In the meantime, here are two shots from one of my favorite memories of our trip: Amy (aka, Schroeder) playing the piano with my mom and dad. Words cannot possibly describe the happiness of this moment.

More from me soon!

Photo credits to my brother - I haven't even unloaded our camera yet. Thanks, Bud!