Monday, April 30, 2012

Friday, April 27, 2012

A Few New Pages

I think I've accepted that I'm never going to get completely caught up on my digi scrapping.  Not without going on a scrapping binge, during which I ignore my chores, my family, and bodily necessities.  Yeah, not happening.  So I fit page in here, and another in there.  At this point, I'm in to June, 2011.

I am anxious, though, to get the 2011 book done, so I can get copies published for the grandparents. (For myself too, but I still haven't gotten around to printing a 2010 book for myself.)

Sunday, April 22, 2012

James David

Rebekah had her baby!  I took a few photos for her, just for fun.  These are a few of the best:

We picked one and I made her birth announcements:

 I made a name plaque to match the nursery set that she chose.

Nautica's Zachary crib set

And I made a bath towel hoodie for the little guy.  He hates to be cold, and it's super cozy and plush. It also coordinates with the nursery.

I used cotton towels--one bath towel and one hand towel-- from Target for the hoodie itself, scraps of cotton fabric for the sail boat, and ribbon from JoAnn's to trim across the bottom of the hood, and all the way across the bottom of the cape.  Quilter's cotton worked so much better for doing the applique than scraps of towel, because the cotton doesn't warp as bad.  (Kaylie's "K" was not supposed to be nearly so big!)  I'll have to ask Rebekah for feedback on functionality.  :)

Congratulations, Josh & Rebekah!  Welcome to the world, James!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Potty Training Progress

So, does anyone remember this post?  I ordered that potty almost 2 years ago.  Man, did I ever jump that gun.  She's been aware of the potty process for that long, which is cool, but she definitely was not ready.  Every so often, we've been testing out the potty-training waters, just to see where she's at.  We've experimented with the  pull-up diapers, and the big girl undies. At some point I decided to stop pushing.  As my  MIL pointed out to me, she is not going to be walking into kindergarten in diapers, so why not let her come to it in her own time?  I ask her a couple of times a day if she needs to use the potty, and make a big deal about it when she does, but I haven't pushed it.

She is sitting on her little potty here, but out of respect for the teenager she will one day be, I cropped them .  You can still see how pleased she is with herself.  PS: Future Elora, you have your father to thank for this consideration.  :)
This past week or so, though, she's been coming to me to tell me that she has to potty!!  Yesterday, she asked to go to the potty no fewer than 7 times!  And today, she told me that she needed to potty while we were at Target, but I was unprepared, so I told her she'd have to wait until we got home...and she did!  I hadn't expected her to be able to hold it, but when we got home 20 or 30 minutes later she asked again to use the potty, and her diaper was still completely dry!  I am so excited, and so proud.  We're getting there.  :)

Oh, and Kaylie has said bye-bye to mushy baby foods.  Now she's eating whole foods with the rest of us.  

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Springy Things

We went to the park.

The girls got a visit from the Easter bunny. (Tutus and white bunny ears courtesy of Papa & Gigi; they were part of Elora's Christmas 2 years ago.  They just now fit!)

And we've taken on a family project.  As you can see, our yard is in pretty sad shape.  

We've done little more than push a lawn mower through it and rip out a few weeds since we moved in.  A gentle nudge from our POA about the unsightly weeds in the front planter spawned a discussion about our lawn, and we decided to take it in hand.  We went this past weekend to scout out materials, make plans, and acquire some new toys tools for Brandon.

So far, we've mowed, trimmed, edged, weeded, put down turf builder, and started the trench for planter edging.  This weekend, we're hoping to finish installing that edging strip, put in some low ever-green bushes between the larger ones along the front foundation line, and put down some new mulch.  Eventually we'll be extending the front planter around the other side of the house, replace the plants along the drive way, get rid of the weeds throughout the lawn and put down grass seed, build a fence, and plant a vegetable garden in the back.
Ambitious, I know.
It'll be a long process, but I'm actually looking forward to it.  I'm excited to have a full, plush yard for the girls to play in, for one thing.  And for another, I like the idea of all of us working together toward a common goal like this.  I like it a lot.  For all that we've been together for so long, Brandon and I don't have a whole lot of common ground.  He provides, I manage the home.  He's into electronics, and I like arts & crafts.  He likes to watch movies, and unless it's something that I specifically want to watch, I have to be coerced, even though I almost always end up liking the movies he chooses for us.  I read (books) whenever I can, while he generally reads (books) only a little before bed. Of course there is overlap, especially with respect to our children. But this is something productive that we can do together, and we can bring the girls out to play while we work.  
Our goal is to put at least a few hours into it every weekend.  (We had better!  After what we spent on his new tools, they had better see some use!)  I'll be posting pictures periodically, to measure our progress.  

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Other Baby Book Website

I did something new and super exciting!!  
I helped to design a website!  For someone else!!  And I got paid to do it!!!

No, really, I did!  This is how it happened:

Rachel, a friend of mine from high school, was asked to put together a new website for a pair of authors promoting their new book.  And Rachel, being the web-savvy girl that she is, said sure!   She felt confident that she could handle putting it together, but felt less sure of her ability to make it look good and is used to working in a team anyway, so she asked the authors if she could bring in a partner: me!  (She said that I was the very first person she thought of to help with the aesthetic elements of the site; is that not an incredible compliment to me or what?)  She told them a little bit about me, showed them my blog and my digital scrapbook pages, and they gave their stamp of approval.  

Fast forward 10 days, about a gazillion e-mails, and a few curses (generally directed at Word Press), and voilá!  A website is born!  If you think of it in terms of building a house, Rachel did all of the construction, and I did all of the interior and exterior decor:  headers, fonts, colors, images, etc.  I just might break my arm before I'm done here, but I'm incredibly pleased with the way it all turned out.

I have to thank Kelly and Lizy, who started me down the path to digital scrap-booking in the first place.  That, combined with my blogging prowess (too much?  Probably, but hey, I'm on a roll here), is what helped me land this gig.  I have just been dying to tell you about this, because I knew you'd be proud.  :)

The book itself is called The Other Baby Book, and is intended to provide an introduction to natural parenting, an alternative to the more mainstream practices and philosophies about parenting through the first 12 months.  I would highly recommend this as good reading for all expecting parents, and parents of young babies, not because I think that everyone should espouse all of their ideas, but because it is good to be informed.  (After all, if you don't have all of the information, how can you make a sound decision?  So it is worth reading, even if you get to the end and say, "Nope, this 'natural parenting' thing just isn't for us".)  And if you want to know more when you get done with the book, then the website that we just put together has a whole stack of suggestions for further reading.