Thursday, 28 April 2011

The Good Samaritan

Says Juliana:

"Mom, do you know what the bad shepherds put on the rock?  A man!  And he was hurt.  His clothes were broken!  And then a nice Samaritan came.  Because he was nice."

The end.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Pardon me while I rebel against the lingering traces of winter.

You know it's been a long winter when the neighbours start shoveling the snow off the grass.  I want to dress for summer already!  So I am.  My toes are a little cold, but other than that, I'm warm enough.

My little guy woke up with a fever again.  Eye teeth coming through maybe?  He's feeling much better now, but this morning he was miserable.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Pretty Food

Part One:

I actually planned our supper menu this week.  I sat down with the newest Kraft What's Cooking magazine, and marked the recipes I wanted to try.  And then bought the groceries I needed for the three I'm trying this week.

Yesterday, I made Honey Balsamic Glazed Salmon for supper.  I was a little leery about the zucchini, since I hated it when I was a kid, and I haven't cooked it much myself.  But it was delicious!  I loved this recipe.  And Kevin even gave me the ok to make it again.  This is probably the first time ever that I haven't overcooked salmon.

I had bought some lemons for something else, and had extra, so I decided to take 10 seconds to garnish the meal (of course four lemon slices is a little bit of overkill), which I served in my largest leaf-shaped platter.  I have been trying to use my serving dishes at supper time, to justify keeping them.  And also to have a pretty table.

Tonight we're having pizza, using the dough recipe from the magazine, but my own topping. (chicken and fresh tomato, with fresh basil.)  I'm worried about the pizza dough.  The last time I made pizza dough, it tasted like cardboard.

Tomorrow is supper at church (Yay, I don't have to cook!), and then for Thursday, I have Mango-Orange Chicken planned.  Friday is Easter dinner with Kevin's family.  I have to come up with an appetizer or hot veggie dish to bring, and I have absolutely no idea what to make!  What would you make?

Part Two:

We had our moms' group at church this morning, and the kids and I had lunch there so we could help with the set for the Easter musical.  I made our sandwiches and got a few other things together, and then I was going to throw it all into a grocery bag.  Then, in order to make it easy for Juliana to carry without squishing anything, I decided to use a basket.  The only one we had that was the right size with a handle was in the kids' bathroom.  So I dumped out Juli's hair ribbons, and packed in our lunch.

After I took these pictures, I tucked one of my antique linen napkins over the top.  Who says pretty can't be practical?

Friday, 15 April 2011

Three Years of Prettiness

So, I totally missed it.  My third anniversary of writing this blog.  Not that I was going to do much, other than marvel at the fact that I've actually stuck with something for three years.  April 14, 2008 was my first real post, about my first trip to the antique show. I've gone every year since then, although I think I'll have to miss it this year.  It happens Easter weekend, which is also Kevin's THIRTIETH birthday, and his mom is coming to visit.  So the weekend is already packed full.

I created this blog to show off my creative efforts.  In three years, I have written 379 posts, and been rewarded with 1186 comments on the posts themselves, along with some on Facebook too.  So thanks for reading!  I hope you'll keep it up.

In honour of the occasion, I've rewritten my "About Me" over there on the right.  I may be making other changes that I've been thinking about recently.  Or I may not.  It would require a couple of migraine-free days, which haven't been happening.  I have a pile of editing that is ticking ever closer to the absolute latest deadline possible that I need to take care of first, headache or no, and a few other things that have been nagging me from the back of my mind.

But the kitchen is painted!  I finished yesterday, even though I ran out of paint.  Pictures to come when the headache goes away.  Two weeks and counting since it started.

To make up for the lack of interesting and creative posts around here lately, here are some links from my three years blogging.

Some of my most commented on posts:
Backyard Bliss
Hi!  I'm Me.
Imperfectly Beautiful
Nesting Gone Wacky
Something Blue
Spice Mess

My most searched for posts:
Tea Towel Apron and the Tutorial
Half Bathroom Photos (from our last house)
Gorgeous Gift Bags

Those three posts used to get all my search engine traffic, but now more posts have started to attract the search engines, including my painted front door, painted doll cradle, and the cen tre pieces.

Nico's response to his daddy's singing.

Kevin really was singing when I took these pictures.

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Little Owl Who?

Yesterday Juliana was watching Angelina Ballerina, and they had masks.  She asked me to make her a mask.  So I did.  It originally didn't have the beak, but Juliana wanted a nose.  She wore it for hours without taking it off.  Now she wants owl wings.

Friday, 8 April 2011

Just a little book I picked up...

...on the way home from visiting my sister.  There's an antique store that has a sign on the highway.  I've seen that sign all my life, but have never stopped.  So on Wednesday, I finally did.  It was quite a job keeping the kids from touching or breaking anything.  The store had some lovely furniture, and an entire lawyer's case full of mostly Zane Grey books.  I have another Zane Grey book (The Day of the Beast...the tattered one behind the "fe" in my header picture), and enjoyed reading it, so I bought this one.  I chose this one because of the colour.  Nick kept trying to escape, so I didn't have much time to browse.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Gallery Wall

It's been a while since I've shown this wall in our stairwell.  I've added a lot since then.  I love the mix of family and friends in the pictures, although poor Nicholas only has one photo on this wall.  I need to print some more of him. The mirror was a wedding gift to my parents 32 years ago.  I refinished it when I was a teenager, and mom let me have it when I moved out.  Thanks Mom!

The walls in the stairwell are still yellow.  What colour do you think I should paint them?

Linking to The Inspired Room's Gallery Wall Party.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

My Garden This Week - April 5

Oh, I was so excited yesterday when I saw this tiny violet in my front garden!  Last year, I was surprised that I had any violets at all, but this one is blooming so early.  We still have a 2-foot mountain of snow in the front, and more in the back.  I've got other green things emerging from the snow, including more violets.  I don't remember what this one is called:

My bachelor-button-like plants are starting to sprout, along with one of my peonies, and one bunch of lilies.

 This is what the front yard looks like now:

And this is part of the back yard:

I can't wait to rake the grass and do spring clean up.  We went for a walk yesterday after supper, and the kids had so much fun splashing in the puddles.  Nicholas needs to learn not to pick up the rabbit droppings.  We passed by one house where a dog was barking inside.  Nick stood outside for quite a while barking back.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Wool Circle Skirt

Back in January, I really wanted to make something for myself out of a piece of wool fabric I had.  But I wanted it to be easy.  No zippers, no button holes.  So I made a circle skirt with a waistband.   I used my favourite skirt for the waistband pattern. I also added a ruffle at the bottom, made out of a loosely-woven piece of polyester-ish fabric.  I think I originally bought that remnant to cover a lampshade.  But the texture and weight is a good contrast for the wool.  I wasn't sure about the ruffle at first.

To avoid button holes, I made button loops instead.  That  allowed me to avoid making a button placket.  I used olive green thread for the top stitching, just because I felt like it.

 I love this skirt.  There is only one thing I don't like about it, and that's the length at the front.  It didn't occur to me that I would need to shorten it a little at the front to make it look even all around.  Oh well. 

I had the skirt completely done except for one row of top-stitching and the buttons, from January through March.  I think in total this skirt took me about two hours to make.  Kevin was my obliging photographer today, and he kept doing weird things, so I have an annoyed look on my face in a few of the pictures, like so:

I think I need to get some cowboy boots to wear with this.   

 Edited to add: I think the problem with the front being longer isn't that I needed to shorten it.  I think it's just because the waistband is actually a little big!  If I took it in about 2 inches, I think it would be perfect.  But I can't really do that without taking the whole skirt apart.  Maybe I could move the buttons over to fix it.