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Friday, February 28, 2014

Something Made

I am always making things.
In my mind.
I rarely get a second to actualize the plethora of creations that live in my mind.
But when I do it's usually pretty cool!

Just want to brag about this up-cycled t-shirt I made Babe-O.
I made the shirt from one of Diet Coke Papa's old t-shirts and one of my old t-shirts.
Then I did my first freezer paper print. It was so easy and I love how it turned out.
Here's the great tutorial I used.


We like to say it's "RID-DONK-ULOUS!" Because check out that jelly. It's just "RID-DONK-ULOUS!" And those colors just scream, "It's time for warm weather and beaches!"
Now I just have to figure out how to get it off him so I can wash it!




A few more of my creations will be posted soon. My plan is to make some springtime clothes for the kids.
Anything to lower the fever and look forward to No More Winter.


Thursday, February 27, 2014

Cabin. Fever.

We are stuck in the cabin. 
We have fever(s). 
We want OUT! 

We want spring. We want the park and picnics. 
We want long walks and bike rides. 
We are crawling up the walls (as best we can with our reoccurring colds)
and dreaming and dreaming of nicer days ahead. 

So at some point we made a choice. 
We could embrace winter. Snuggle in and do wintry things.
Or we could stick our tongues out at winter and be BAD!  
We decided to be BAD! 
Do all kinds of things we aren't "supposed" to do in the winter (or maybe when your sick)! 

We took snowy/melty scooter and bike rides on a few days when the windchill was above zero. 

We played with our food! 
A beach made out of  blue jello and graham cracker crumbs!  Some cut up cucumber, orange slices, and potatoes make up the Great Barrier Reef. A few cut grapes stand in as jelly fish. Our trusty hammerhead shark swims in the water just off the shore while Wonder Woman takes in some sun. 

Couldn't resist feeding Babe-ala the shark! 

We had a midnight rock n' roll session with the kitchen pots and pans in the dark!  


Being sick really throws off our already way off sleep schedule! Nothing beats a VERY loud jam session except a jam session in the dark! (Oh and we had glowing balloons but they popped right away. Boo!)
Great idea Babe-O! 

We are pretty good at being bad! 
This is what we've been up to lately. How about you? 

Monday, February 17, 2014

The Donut Chef

Donuts are perfect for birthday celebrations (of which we have had two in the last two weeks) and a great way for Mama to de-stress in the kitchen.  I love this kind of crazy involved cooking on a cold winter day. Also, donuts are the perfect way to serve up a little home-made gooey love.

I used a recipe for Raised Donuts from the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book. My Mom passed down this cookbook to me. It was printed in 1968 and it's covered in grease stains and flour. It's pages are all out of order because the book is a ring binder and a while ago the pages fell out.  I never bothered to put them back in order. It forces me to have to look through recipes to find what I want. It has discolored pictures of  jello molds and crown roasts. It reminds me of my Mom's kitchen and baking (or deep frying as it is for donuts) out of it for my family just makes me happy.
Notice, our tribute to the Winter Olympics!


Plus we LOVE books about donuts!

The Donut Chef by Bob Staake is a family favorite.
This book is about a chef who opens a donut shop and competes with a chef who opens up a shop next door to make the best donut. After experimenting with every shape, color, and flavor the most loved donut is a simple glazed. We love all of Staake's books for their awesome rhymes and content (and because most of them involve food or robots!) What better way to bring this book to life than to make donuts?! 




So we whipped up a batch and Babe-O became the donut chef by decorating (and devouring) his own donut.


Our second favorite donut book is Who Needs Donuts Anyway? by Mark Alan Stamaty This book is a psychedelic journey to the city of donuts. Where the main character, Sam, discovers that love is more important than donuts. It is a must read for anyone!!! The illustrations are amazing and the story is just perfect! What better way to bring this book to life than to deliver some home-made donuts to our neighbors?!

So there you. have. it. A bunch of donuts. A lot of sprinkles! Two books. Lots of GOOEY LOVE!
Wish you could have joined us!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

A Moment with The Babe-O

We were reading a book before bed last night. It was about a wishing well.
Babe-O had many questions about wells.
I asked, " What would you wish for?"
He replyed, " Ice Cream."
I asked, " What else?"
He thought for a while and said, " A tree to climb."

Ice cream and a tree to climb: warm weather must be on the way.
I've already got some trees picked out to climb (small ones).

Monday, February 10, 2014

Baby Paint




















A new favorite.
Creative, messy, and nutritious.
Completely uncontrollable.
A good chance to stand back and soak in pure baby joy...
followed by a bath.
A fun morning for all.

Baby Paint = greek yogurt + drop of food coloring 
It's that simple. It's that fun.






Friday, February 7, 2014

Happy Birthday Deo!

In this family you are required to celebrate for at least two days when it's your birthday!
This is the first of a many celebrations for Deo this year.

Good friends and helpers.
The best fam-O EVER! (The one with the cutest Baby Party Girl!)
Mexican food for lunch.
Some new shoes! (Who doesn't love a new pair of shoes on their birthday?)
Some sunshine and doughnuts!



The only one missing is Home Skillet! Man do we miss him! Come home Home Skillet!
Babe-O says: " Come back Siriano! If you don't we are breaking down Italy!"


Thanks to Deo's birthday Babe-ala gets to taste doughnuts for the first time!


 AND just for the record:
It is quite possible that Deo doesn't love anyone as much as he loves The Babe-ala.
Be jealous people...
be very jealous!

Happy Birthday Deo! 
We love you! 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Batman



This is a recent conversation I had with The Babe-O.

Babe-O:  Robin! Batman has to go poopies! 

Me: To the Bat Potty! 

Yes. That was my automatic response.

Since Batman has become an installment in our lives and invaded our daily going-ons I have had my reservations. Whenever I engage in conversations with others about Babe-O's interest in Batman I always tack on the phrase "and I am not sure how I feel about it". And I say this almost daily because he is usually wearing his Bat boots, his Bat shirt or his cape and he introduces himself to others as Batman as in: "I can talk to you right now, I am Batman and I have to fight criminals."

Here's why I am not sure how I feel about it.
I don't approve of  the violence, objectification of women, body distortion, and early exposure to popular media that comes along with all things super hero.
I do approve of a good good versus evil story, creative play that extends and expands on stories, play that builds confidence and provides a feeling of power in the lives of little powerless people.

Here's what I am doing about it.
I have very little control over sheer exposure to popular media.
I can control the length and medium of exposure.
So, we read Batman stories and some age appropriate comic books. We watch the original Batman movie with Adam West. On occasion. (Much less violence than the cartoons and they are real people's bodies not distorted drawings).
I have no control over the content. I can control conversations we have about violence, fighting and weapons. I can control conversations about how we use our strength and how we use our smarts and conversations about real-life heroes, like "helpers" (firefighters, doctors, nurses, activists). I can control Babe-O's exposure to other play options by initiating tea parties, trips to the moon, and getting outside!
I can make sure that all of Babe-O's gender expressions are valued.

Since I started writing this we have had an emergency on the homestead. Diet Coke Papa had a fall and required an ambulance. He is recovering, nothing life threatening, just a bad leg injury. He is doing well. Babe-O was there when the paramedics came and when Papa was in a great deal of pain. He was scared and confused. After crying and talking and being comforted by me, Batman came for a visit. Batman Babe-O played out fighting the helpers who came to hurt Papa.We used out dollhouse to replay the scene and Batman put all the helpers in a tree so that Papa could come home and feel better.

All this drama aside, the most important Bat lesson I have learned is Batman is important. I am embracing Batman. I am accepting Batman into our lives. I realize that Batman is only ONE part of Babe-O's play. Batman gives the little Babe-O power in this huge and scary world where he has none. From now on when I engage in conversations about Babe-O's interest in Batman I will tack on the phrase, "Batman is powerful."

So stay tuned for more of our Bat Adventures. Same Bat time, same Bat channel...
we'll be in the Bat cave researching criminals and waiting for the Bat signal from Commisoner "Gorner."
We'll be ready to fight crime or use the Bat potty, whatever comes first.

In the meantime, what are your thoughts about the role of superheros in the lives of little boys (or girls)?

Nothing could be better than a walk around the pond with YOU.

It's 20 degrees today! A heat wave!
We have to get out of this house!

Babe-O has had a cold and with Diet Coke Papa's injury we have been holed up for a while.

This morning the birds were eating the remains of our bird cookies and when we opened the door to check the weather we could hear the calls of our old woodpecker friend.

So, when Babe-O wanted to go outside I quickly got us into our coats and boots ignoring the fact that we were still in our pajamas. We headed to the pond to search for birds and other winter treasures (and to peek at the train tracks that run behind the pond). Walks around the pond with Babe-O, Babe-ala, and Diet Coke Papa when he is home is my favorite thing in the world.




With cold noses and lots of energy we trekked around the pond and found the spot where all the birds were singing, the hole in the big oak tree where some squirrels live, we explored the pier, and the untouched areas of snow, and we saw a train car with special equipment for cutting down branches close to the train tracks.


Babe-O found some branches to make "a new house". So we drug them home with us. And...

well...



we built a new house.


No house work done today. No dinner made. Just a breath of fresh air and an amazing outside/inside structure to snuggle under and read books tonight... all the Babe-O's idea!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Extra Yarn

We have been reading Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett, illustrated Jon Klassen.
A great book! We. LOVE. it.

There are knitting needles, an archduke, Mr. Crabtree, a ship, a castle, three robbers and three ladders, several letter A's, a dog named Mars, and lots and lots of yarn. If that doesn't make for a great book I don't know what does.

So we did this little project to celebrate our newest favorite book.

I drew a few key elements/characters from the story onto Contact paper using a permanent marker. (Don't judge me. I did what I could in T - 2 seconds).



Gave Babe-O some "Extra Yarn" and some scissors.






Process over product folks! He loved being like Annabelle (the main character). And the sensory experience matched with the fine motor practice makes me feel good. It's a pretty quick set up and clean up. Perfect for a 3 year old and can be made into a more intricate process by an older child.

Another book come to life! Rawsome!