William & Ellie…

This sweet story started back when William was almost 1 years old and we were going on a road-trip.    The kids were already buckled in their car seats when on a whim I ran inside for a stuffed animal for each boy to accompany them on the trip.   As fate would have it I randomly grabbed a blue elephant for William and that was that, a beautiful friendship was born.

From then on William and his elephant (or ‘Ellie’) were inseparable…

and wherever William went Ellie went too.   She matches the colour of his eyes…

And if her one fault is that she tends to act like a big micro-fibre dust rag, well, it just meant I had to sneak her away from William every so often so she could have a bath.

He loves her so much and that has led to another problem… we’ve discovered it’s best if you never mention to William that Ellie won’t be going to heaven with him whenever God calls him home.   The poor guys gets very upset and refuses to be comforted.   But at this point I decided it’s best to leave that conundrum in God’s very capable hands.

But all this love has been hard on Ellie and even though William doesn’t suck his thumb anymore, Ellie is still very important to him.   So when William asked me a few week ago if I would fix Ellie’s tail which was in tatters…

I couldn’t put it off and promised I would fix it.

But how?

Well I thought and thought and went online searching for how to fix a stuffed animal, tried to convince William that Ellie needed a whole new tail, but he just wouldn’t hear of it.     So since I was stuck with fixing the old one, major surgery was the only way.

I washed Ellie,  opened her up, got the tail out, opened it all up and hand-sewed a patch on the end.   Then thankfully was able to sew it all up again with my sewing machine, re-stuffed Ellie, fixed a few more  things on her and voila,  she’s in one piece again!

And yes, I took a picture of Ellie’s butt just so I could show you her new tail.  Doesn’t she look chipper again?

William was very grateful to have Ellie restored in one piece – even though I didn’t re-stuff her poor legs… but that was going to be a little to time intensive and he didn’t seem to mind.

So now that I’ve finished that Ellie story,  I can move on to this one…

in short, the high-light of my day.   A snugly, yummy, little kissable Ellie (really Eliana).

She’s the daughter of my friend Melissa and she and her mom and her sister’s came for a visit today.    She is almost 2 months old and she’s already smiling and trying to communicate and is just oh-so-sweet.

Thanks Melissa for letting me snuggle your Ellie today!

Catch-up notes…

So we found out something interesting Saturday night… we found out that if a boy runs to his room, trips on his closet door and goes head first into his brothers bedpost, he will crack his head open and have to go to the hospital and get 5 stitches!  True story.      It was Erik… and he’s the one out of all my kids that takes getting hurt the most seriously.   On the way to the hospital while he was shaking like a leaf he said pitifully.. “I always thought this was something that would happen to someone else… not me!”  But he was a trooper through the whole thing and it really helps that I can use a trip to the Dollar Store as a bribe – he took me up on that already by the way.

And then Monday we enjoyed ‘Family day’ as the bedroom and bathroom we’re renovating in the basement was being dry-walled.   Nothing like some hammering and banging going on in the background to make a day extra-special. 🙂  But I’m not complaining,  because as anyone knows who has lived through a renovation, getting that project done is what it’s all about!   And I’m so looking forward to having our bathroom downstairs back… well back is not the right word…  completely and utterly replaced would be more appropriate.   It will be wonderful where the last one was awful and it’s worth the mess and noise right now.

And I don’t know why I haven’t been blogging like I should be… other than to say that February has been busy.   Can I really be saying that?   I used to look forward to February, the month where nothing happens and you have time to do the things you want to do.    That’s what I used to think,  but the days keep slipping by so fast that I just don’t seem to have the time for all the things I would like to do, let alone the things that should be getting done…  spring cleaning anyone?

I have been finding time to do some more crocheting however.  It’s funny that I  always find a way to sneak in reading of novels  or some pet project even when things are busy.   Perhaps it plays a small part in keeping my sanity… but here is a hat I crocheted recently…

And thanks to my neighbour who showed me how her hat worked… the flower is removable… fun huh?

So that’s what’s been going on with us… a little bit of exciting… alot of boring… but at least now I’m caught up!

Kakabeka Falls

Isn’t that just a great name… Kakabeka?  It’s so smooth, it kinda just flows off your tongue.   And now I can proudly say that I’ve seen Kakabeka falls pictured here in their frozen glory…

The falls are just outside of Thunder Bay where Jay and I just spent a wonderful relaxing weekend visiting our friends Katie and Dave and their kids.    Thunder Bay is a neat place, there are mountains and a sleeping giant and a wind-chill that blows right through you and leaves you cold for days.   Just kidding…  it was cold and I was a wimp but I have this lousy winter and it’s plethora of  above freezing temps to blame… my body is not adjusted to the cold.

It’s weird but Calgary is actually further north than Thunder Bay, even though TB is still a ways away from here.  But thankfully we could fly there with Dave who is a pilot for Porter Airlines,  as  a 17 hour drive around Lake Superior would really not be practical  for a weekend away.

While we were there the kids had a great time being cared for and entertained by Oma and then Grandma and Grandpa.  The kids were pretty sure they were going to miss us terribly – although we were confident otherwise – and sure enough we were right, they had a marvelous time.   Phew…  so now we can get busy planning our next getaway.  HA!

And then it was Valentines day.    The kids stayed home with me Monday and we spent the day making last-minute Valentines because I wasn’t organized to make them last week.    We found the ideas here and I think they turned out just fine….

Sucker flowers for the girls and “You’re a blast ” rockets for the boys…  it’s just that we had to make about 30 of each so it took a while so even though it looked like a tornado had gone through the house when we were through,  we had a good time.

Yesterday for Valentines I took the opportunity to fully top off the kids sugar levels by baking a valentines cake for dessert.      And it’s true that even though I enjoyed seeing the sights of Thunder Bay and spending time with our friends, east, west, north, south, being at home is always the best!

Winter-time yarn

The winter-time always makes me want to get out some yarn and this winter was no different.  And so  here is a small project I just completed,  a little scarf for Sophia…

I bought this yarn last year and actually had crocheted a hat for the girls, but it was so chunky the hat looked funny, so I unraveled it and knitted a scarf instead.    It took a while to figure out how I wanted to knit it up,  but after many attempts I decided that a garter stitch suited the yarn the best and as a bonus, the size I wanted was only 9 stitches across!  And I learned how to do a crochet cast-off, which resulted in a nice braid end which matched the other end which was nice.

So I’m pleased with this quick and easy project.   And I’m a girl who likes quick and easy.   I get bored easily and although once I did knit a vest (it was awful)  I can’t see me every attempting to knit a sweater because I would lose interest after a few rows.   I can say that in all honesty because of this…..

A crocheted afghan that I started probably 13 years ago and is still not finished!!!!   It’s embarrassing really.     Back when I started it years and years ago,  it was supposed to be for Jason and I had matched the colours to a fleece that he gave me and I thought that would just be so nice.   Well it was rather nice in a way, wasn’t it?

So this baby got pulled out of the crawl-space a few weeks ago when I was de-cluttering and I decided that I am storing it no longer!  I refuse!  But then I ended up with  a dilemma because what does one do with an unfinished afghan?    I guess I’m just going to have to finish it,   I must.    So even though I’ve only averaged 6 rows a year, I’m happy to report that I am close to finishing it and this is going to be the year it gets done.

But then that brings me to another question,  what do I do with it when I do finish it?   We don’t need any more throws around here and I don’t think Jason has any emotional attachments to it, although he does bug me mercilessly about it every time he sees it.     I guess if it actually does get done this year, it will be up for grabs.  So if anyone wants it just let know.   If no one wants it,  I just can’t say what will happen to it… and the poor thing really does deserve a good home.

Well I better get back to it, with another thaw coming tomorrow my winter urge to knit or crochet might leave me and we can’t have that!

My Portrait

Well a budding young artist at the age of 4 has drawn my portrait and I feel I would be remiss if I did not share it with you….  just scroll down….

What can I say, other than a I feel I look strangely like a jungle queen.    The inscription says  “My Mommy” so it’s sweet that Sarah had me in mind when she painted this – even though I think she may have used some artistic license  – perhaps quite a bit of artistic license.  Or maybe this is how I appear to her through her four year old eyes.  Whatever the case, this is definitely a picture to be treasured!

A sneak peek…

The kids are pretty excited about tomorrow – and today Jason carved our pumpkins for the big event!  (Pumpkins that we had saved from our garden!)

Sarah picked a puppy for the girl’s pumpkin and the boys didn’t know what they wanted until we found some inspiration online and this is the result…

Doesn’t it rock?  We found a template here and Jason did an amazing job carving it.   Here it is again with the girl’s pumpkin, again from a template found here

We are definitely going to enjoy showing these guys off tomorrow!

Crayon Candy Cushions

A few weeks ago when Will was home sick he wanted to do a craft.  A CRAFT… this is William who does crafts at school but rarely wants to do them at home because he’s too busy running around and playing, so when he asks I try to comply.  This is the craft that he chose…

It was making a cushion that you actually decorate by drawing crayon on fabric… it’s from this book which we’ve gotten alot of use from for years…

So we got to work… coloring on fabric.   It is a little tricky because you really have to keep the fabric taunt, but the kids did a great job… on the first side…

But apparently it was too time consuming, so both Erik and William had me colour the other side of their cushions, with firm  instructions on how I was to do it… just in case I couldn’t quite figure it out.    As you can see, both boys coloured their cushions as close to the cushions in the picture as they could.  When I tried to tell them they could decorate their own cushions however they wanted, they just looked at me like I was crazy.   They were making the cushions FROM THE BOOK,  what was wrong with me? 

So after they coloured them,  (as you can see Sarah wasn’t bound by any such notions – although I did add the green diamonds for her at her request) I ironed them, on newspaper, crayon side down with wax paper between the iron and the cloth.    it was really cool because you could see the crayon melt, and then it soaked right in to the fabric, so you couldn’t even tell they were coloured with crayon… it just dyed the material.   How cool is that?

Then I sewed and stuffed them and voila – candy cushions coloured by crayons.   The kids love them – which I know because I find them all over the house – but best of all, I made my William happy!