Friday, February 27, 2015

Oh, Hey Friday- Toddler and Preschooler Books

Friday has rolled around once again. Sometime between Tuesday and Wednesday I always think it can't possibly be further away and then somehow it manages to sneak up on me! No plans for this weekend other than getting our car fixed (hopefully just a minor thing, famous last words) and going for a craft store run. I am in desperate need of certain colors of yarn.

My 5 for Friday this week is going to be all about books for the little 'uns. I am happy to have some bright little readers. It's true what they say, you know. Children really do become readers on the laps of their parents. I'm always looking for new books for the kids and especially books for my little miss that won't bore me to death.

1. The Oldies but Goodies-


You can't go wrong with Seuss. Ever. Or Eric Carle. His books have to be some of my very favorite books in the history of ever. The list really does go on and on with the old school

2. Rib Tickling

Chimpansneeze and Hiccupotamus are 2 of our most requested books and they are so cute we can read them over and over. You Will Be My Friend is CUTE as cute can be. Much recommend.

3. Alice's Favorite

No David and David Goes to School are Alice Mae's very favorite books of all time. She has known them by heart since the 3rd time we read them and she goes through phases that are never that far apart where she wants to read these books and only these books about a dozen times a day.

4. Lovey Books

Firstly, Love Monster is adorable. Secondly, Penguin in Love is a very new to us book that we got for Valentine's day and Alice is OBSESSED with it and it is 2 of my favorite things- yarn work and penguins. It is so cute, you can't even believe it. Read it to your kids!

5. Neil Gaiman

I love him, I love his work and his children's books are no exception. It's all lovely. Do yourself a favor and read Blueberry Girl. Chu is also SO CUTE. But if you are trying to raise brave, wonder-struck babies, Blueberry Girl is da bomb diggity.

I have so many more. I really narrowed it down! Go me. I think this is a good list in a pinch, hopefully with some new to you stuff that will help you bulk up your kiddo's library.

Head on over to September Farm and The Farmer's Wife for more Friday fun.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

August Comicon

Something I haven't really blogged about yet! At the beginning of January I was invited to be a vendor at a brand spankin' new Comicon in my state and after about a month long wait I got the official invite this month! That means I have A LOT to do between now and August but I think it's really doable as long as I keep myself in check and stick to a schedule.

A comicon is right up my alley. I'm such a nerdy nerd and I love all things nerdy and this is just an excuse to make things that I love making anyway!

I'm still working up ideas for things and brainstorming and using the next month or so to work out the kinks in patterns and figure out what exactly it is that I want to make/can make.

One of the things I am thinking of is fingerless gloves in a variety of nerdy styles. I've worked up 2 that I REALLY love and I've added them to my Etsy shop!

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a fan girl and my top 2 fandoms are Doctor Who and Harry Potter. So naturally those were the first places my mind went.

My Who gloves are inspired by the 11th Doctor. Because bowties are cool. I've seen some like this around the internet and thought they were an excellent idea. The current HP gloves are Gryffindor inspired, obviously, and I'm going to add some for each house as I get the yarn.

I am really pleased with these! They are pretty nice for a first try, I think. Gloves are generally pretty easy, although I won't lie- making the 11th Doctor gloves weren't that quick and easy at first. The glove itself with easy peasy! But I went through 2 different sizes for the bowtie before liking what I ended up with and it was my first time surface slip stitching on my crochet so there was some trial and error. Worth it! It turned out awesome. I seriously love them

My list for nerdy things to try out and make this week- a snitch ornament and a pair of Slytherin house gloves. I'm a busy Queen bee!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Living with Infertility - I Don't Hate You

Dear pregnant women,

I don't hate you. Okay, so sometimes that is a lie. Sometimes I imagine living on an island where pregnant women are banned or women with squishy newborns and especially women who get pregnant as soon as the thought 'maybe I should have a baby' pops into their head. I would lounge around, maybe even invite other infertile couples to live there so that we could bitch together about our unresponsive reproductive organs. We'd have fun 'bon voyage' parties for the lucky SOB's that managed to catch a slippery egg and then we'd kick their butts off of our island.

It would be easier to live with pregnancy blinders on. In some ways I do. There are many a pregnant friend/family member on social media that I have put my blinders on for. I don't hate you. I promise. I just can't deal with the daily posts about your bump or what size your baby is today or the endless ultrasound photos. I am honestly thrilled for you but that in no way takes away from my sadness for myself and my partner. And so, unfollowed you shall be for the time being. No offence to you or your expanding uterus and the womb booger it houses.

It would also be easier to live with bitterness or hate in my heart than to openly try to rejoice and welcome every new pregnant mama. It would be easier to turn my back on everyone with a working uterus. Easier to say that I don't care. Easier to cut them all off. I wish that I could some days, because it's hard watching everyone have babies while you wait and hope and hold your breath and pray. I am NOT good at keeping the faith. I'm just not. I go up and down so fast. One minute I am sure this is our month and the next I am grieving the baby that I just know I'll never get.

I read something that was basically like infertility is like going through the 5 stages of grief every month. And it rang true for me.

You deny- Okay, this month it's happening. Those other months weren't for real. We just weren't having sex at the right times. This is it. It's happening this time.

You bargain- If I get pregnant I will do everything right this time. No screwed up kid for me! I will be the best mom. I'll never complain about weight gain or morning sickness or being tired. I will be the perfect pregnant woman and mom. I will play Mozart to my belly and eat only healthy things and cut out all sugar and caffeine.

You get angry- Why am I even doing this to myself?! Why do I bother? It's pointless. This isn't fair. It shouldn't be us. We're great parents. Why does everyone else get a baby? Why does SHE get a baby, she's horrible. Why why why.

You get depressed- Month after month after month. Why do we try? Why can't we just be happy with the family we have? We'll never get pregnant. We'll never have another baby.

And then you accept it- Okay. That's it for this month. Another negative. We'll move on. Pack it in. At least I get a break from checking my cervical mucus for a week or 2.

And somehow, after all of that, I arrive back at a point of hope when/if my period starts again. It's a new beginning, a new chance to try and maybe succeed. Can you see where it is enough to drive you MAD? It's enough to send anyone off the deep end. Yet there are 1 in 8 of us out there doing this constantly and even though I think many of us feel like we are going to lose our sh*t, we keep it together. Life goes on. You move on even when you feel stuck in one place, in one never ending cycle.

For a long time I did hate every pregnant woman. I gave them the stink eye and I said mean things about them in my head. And I'm not saying I don't still get upset when someone gets pregnant because it hurts to watch that joy in someone else's life. I have come to a place in our infertility journey where I am not sure what will happen next. Will we conceive? Will we adopt? Who knows right now!? But I do know that at some point I realized I can't be angry all the time and I can't hate every pregnant woman and I can't live my life filled to the brim with jealousy and bubbling over with bitterness. So I decided to rejoice for the lives they created. I rejoice for them and their baby and their families and how excited they must be.

And above all, I continue to hope that one day that will be us.

Now if I could just figure out how to put actual pregnancy blinders on so that when I go to the grocery store I'm not counting the pregnant women.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Oh, Hey Friday!

I am hoping for a really productive weekend. With my boys home and no plans and nowhere to go I am hoping to get the house in proper order, get some of my organization projects done, maybe even finish stripped our porch of its old, nasty screen! But that's reaching a bit far. Gotta have some goals though.

My random 5 for this Friday-

1. Parks and Rec

I don't feel emotionally stable enough to say goodbye right now. I can't believe it's over! What will my Wednesday nights (thanks Hulu!) be without Leslie Knope and April Ludgate? Sigh. Currently I'm sedating my sadness by looking up everything April related. Such as these motivational posters.

2. A New Favorite for Alice Mae

She got this for Valentine's Day and loves it. Can't get enough. It's sweet because that was big brother's favorite book as a baby.


When will Winter be over??? I know the North is awful and bad and snowed in but it's no picnic here either. We don't even get snow to play in, just cold and ice. Our toilet is frozen! That's how cold it is. And it can't thaw because it just keeps getting colder. *sob* I'm so tired of being cold. I just want Spring. Pretty flowers and leaves on the trees and sunshine and walks to the park and air that doesn't hurt my face.

4. Blankety Decisions

I am struggling to decide on a blanket pattern for my niece-to-be due in May. I need to get working on it soon! But I just can't decide what I love best. I've narrowed it down to this your first breath popcorn stitch pattern and this tree of love pattern.

5.  Sneaky Peak
I've got some fun crochet stuff in the works. Banging it out like woah! I'll share more of what I've been up to next week. Hint- it's all nerdy.

That's it for me this week! I'm looking forward to big brunches and some sleeping in this weekend. Yum to both.

Here's who I am linking up with this week! Have a good one.

September Farm and The Farmer's Wife

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Infertility Humor

Sometimes it's nice to laugh, even when you feel like your heart is breaking. Often times I find that I am most willing to laugh after having been through something so sad or stressful. So- some infertility humor to get us through those hard days/weeks/months.

My personal favorite-

And just because sometimes we need a reminder-

I'm keeping my chin up and having myself a few giggles along the way. Be blessed and know that it's all gonna be okay.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Going Ons and Blanket Tada

Randomness and happenings and a blanket!

I'm gleefully working at organizing our kitchen with the help of my 2 favorite new things- this wire rack and our new fridge. I can't get over how much I love this fridge. <3 Our old one was OLD. And small. This one is so big that I'm just constantly shocked at how easy it is to organize and keep clean. It has been over a week and it's still clean! Which is a miracle, honestly.

Can you hear the angels singing? Listen closely... Ahhhhhh.

A bag of baby gifts for my friend's shower coming up this weekend.

 A lovely friend of my mom's brought me some salt water taffy back from the beach and I was so happy I teared up. I love salt water taffy. Random fact- when I was pregnant with Ollie I craved salt water taffy SO HARD. But a specific kind from a place in Maryland, haha. Poor husband wasn't able to fulfill that one.

A sweet owl hat for a darling little boy born to my friend.

 And the TADA! This blanket is for the taffy friend. She has a grandbaby due soon. She bought the green and yellow yarn and told me to choose any pattern I liked so this is what I came up with.

Bernat Baby in Mint and Lemon
Red Heart in White
I hook

I'm pleased as punch with it.

I'll be playing catch up on my blankets for the rest of the week. Trying to get caught up and possibly a bit ahead!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Valentine's Funsies 2015

And then comes Monday. Am I right? Today is a very strange and special Monday. My mama has the kids until this evening so I am home. ALONE. I'm pulling a Macaulay Culkin face, you just can't see.

Saturday was really nice. I love Valentine's Day. We showered the kids with gifts and chocolates that morning and then we went on a nice date.

The art museum was having their family day. Lots of craft stations and activities for kids, all for free! We enjoyed cupcakes and then we went through each art station and colored bags and made heart necklaces and Valentine's and fingerprint bugs and Ollie's favorite- Valentine's secret messages. White crayon written on card stock that you water color over. He thought that was the coolest.

They are so sweet. My funny Valentine's.

We dropped them off with my mama and went on our own little date. Traffic was CRAZY and a 10 minute drive took more like 30 but once we got to the restaurant the wait was surprisingly short. We feasted on sushi and tempura and thai basil beef (possibly my new favorite thing) and ginger chicken and seaweed salad (always a favorite of mine).
An added bonus was having all of yesterday to be alone together at home. We decide to stay in PJs and not leave the house. Best decision ever. And we had smoked gouda fondue and chocolate fondue for dinner. Equally good decision. It was amaaaaazing.


Our gifts to each other were pretty neat, I think. I made Peter a 'days since' print out. I included things like the number of days since our first date, our first Valentine's day, our wedding, our kid's birthdays. Put it in a pretty frame and bam. Cheap and cool gift.
And husband got me 2 pretty new tank decorations for my fish. Can you tell I'm basically a crazy fish lady? Forget about cats. Fish is where it's at. This big rock thing and pink plant are my new additions. The Fish of Boe seems very keen on it. He's having a blast with new hiding places.
And both my boys pitched in to get me my very favorite thing I've ever had ever ever ever. A GNOME GARDEN.
It is so cute! Squeeeee. I'm trying to sort out how I want to decorate it. I am kind of obsessed with the idea of crocheting plants for it. Maybe some succulent type things? Drape-y flowers? Who knows! I think crochet/fake plants would be best because it would be year round and it could be indoors without the cats chewing it.
It was a really nice weekend. I enjoyed myself thoroughly and I got a bit of sanity saving alone time today. I finished up some stuff and I'm currently trying to catch up on some blanket madness. I am a week behind on both blankets! Oh my. Better get crackin'.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Oh, Hey Friday!

Freakin' Weekend!

We have a lot of stuff to look forward to. Valentine's fun with the kids and 2 whole nights without the kids (what?!). That means 2 days with date opportunity.

But first, some Friday randomness. What have we been up to this week?

1. V-Day Gifts

We are going to visit both Grandmas on Saturday so we picked up some tulips and chocolates for them. I like giving a little something when we can.

 We also grabbed this block puzzle for the niece and the kids made her a Valentine. The blocks have a different pictures on each side. We picked one of these up to put aside for Miss Mae's birthday in April. We have some puzzle loving little girls in our family.

I have a special home made gift for husband that I'll share later. I have to print it out! And frame it.
2. Organizing
I am a machine.  I've been cleaning the crap out of the house. We also purchased some new kitchen stuff so that is getting moved around and reorganized and it's all a hot mess right now but when it's DONE, it will be marvelous. My main focus is the kitchen and there is still a lot to do. I have the feeling that part of my date with husband this weekend will be shopping for the perfect containers to help us corral and organize in there.
3. Alice Big Girl Room
She's pretty excited about this red bed. We went shopping for new sheets (since her old ones were all toddler bed sized) and a new pillow. We still have to pick up a new comforter for her. I am dead set on a white/cream one because eventually when her b-day blanket is done I want it to pop and not compete with other blankets.
Husband has put together her dresser and we've rearranged her room and started to organize things. Best thing about this bed is the potential for underbed storage. I already bought some clear plastic containers and put play food/tea sets in one, dress up clothes in another and all of her babies and baby accessories in the last one. I told you. I'm a freaking machine.
I'm planning on adding some more art and we bought new curtains, etc. It's coming together. Slow and steady.
4. Garden Readiness
I planted a TON of seeds yesterday in pots on my porch. Kale, lettuce, green onion, basil, rosemary, chives. I still have to plant some morning glory and carrots and more lettuce and kale in some other pots. This coming week I'll probably start putting together our new raised beds and HOPEFULLY the pea teepee I want to make the kids. I'm also going to pick out flowers for the front flower bed, which has never been pretty in the nearly 2 years we've owned this place. I want pretty flowers, damn it.
Speaking of. My boys knew I wasn't having a great day yesterday and they brought me home these roses, which I immediately planted in a big pot. Love love love.
5. Alphabet Learnin'
Al and I are working hard on her alphabet, especially her name. Which she knows 4 out of 5 of the letters of! She is still having trouble remembering I but it will come in time. I made her this little alphabet matching game up there (super easy, I just made some templates and then cut them out of construction paper and we keep them in a plastic bag up on a shelf) and I made her a name puzzle to work on which has really helped her learn how to spell her name. Like I said, some puzzle loving girls up in here.
We also sing her name to the tune of Bingo. 'There was a girl who had a name and Alice was her name-o! A-L-I-C-E!' etc and she loooooves it.
So that's the 5 for this week. Random going ons. I'm off to pack some bags for my love monsters and get their Valentine's day surprises ready! There will be much heart shaped food and adventure happening tomorrow. Have a lovely weekend.


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

WIP Wednesday- A New Blanket

For WIP Wednesday I have a new blanket to add to all of my blanket madness that's going on.

First of all, I still have the blankets for my kiddos. Those are going well. Still mostly on track. Being sick meant I didn't get Ollie's 10 squares for last week done but those are fast to work up so I'll just do 20 this week. Easy peasy. Alice's has reached the fun stage where you can tell it's going to be a blanket. It's always nice to get to that point. I'm too lazy to take new pics so here are the old ones, just to remind myself what they look like.


My newest blanket is one for a friend. She sent me this green and yellow baby yarn (Mint and Lemon from Bernat Softee Baby) and asked for a blanket for her grandbaby-to-be with no pattern in mind so I went with this round ripple baby blanket. It's my first round ripple and I really enjoy it! It's going fast. This is just a couple of hours of work so far. I added the white to make the colors pop a bit more and I think that was a good decision. I'll drop it off with her this weekend so that she can mail it.

I had planned on having more going on this week but I've been busy with sickness and house projects. The tornado we call Organizational April has been set loose. Poor husband and kids. It will look worse before it gets better. Alice asked me today 'why are you cleaning SO MUCH?!'. Just hang tight kid. We'll get through it. Probably.