Saturday, May 9, 2009

The beginnings of a spring wardrobe...

I finally got around to sewing clothes for the girls. First up, an appliqued onesie and "capri" pants for S. K's summer dress in in the works. Considering what pitifully little time I actually have to sew because both girls have to be down for their nap at the same time, I project the dress will be
finished sometime around Thanksgiving 2010.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Links on the sidebar

I've started adding links to my favorite online stores, resources and blogs on blog sidebar, as a reference for myself and others (yes, you, the two people that follow my blog besides my husband, and even he only checks in quarterly I think). This sidebar will grow exponentially once I get into the rhthym of posting all the links to things I think you might find helpful and interesting - they are all jumbled in my head at the moment.

I've also started this book and am a mere 286 pages away from becoming the perfect parent: I laughed out loud when I realized, upon brief perusal, that the advice in this book would probably do more our marriage than for our parenting. Ha! Read it and ye shall understand.

This is terrible in all its randomness but I had to post this picture - I painted my kitchen backsplash a few weeks with a zero VOC paint from Yolo colourhouse. If you can believe it, it had nearly no odor, no harmful chemicals and no solvents (so no headaches for the wee ones, yay). Yolo has some great color palettes; the kitchen wall was painted in Sprout 01, which is a nontoxic washable paint created with concern for children in mind. This was my first time painting anything beside my nails so I'm stunned that it wasn't a complete disaster.

Is my Orla Kiely a la Target consumption too much to stomach??? This is not even a small fraction of it. The rest of it is stashed away in the pantry closet and scattered throughout the house so J doesn't realize I have a problem and make me return it all.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Monday morning

Baking with K (she so loves to help me bake and I love her enthusiasm. I don't so much love all the flour and sugar that ends up on the floor.)
Chocolate chip walnut banana bread! The most moist and simple recipe ever (no mixer needed) -
K made this herself, nearly! I helped paint the hair, make holes in the dress for arms, and cut out the bag. K painted the face, picked the fabric, cut out the fabric, glued the fabric and most importantly, played with her afterwards!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The days are long but the years are short

This post is inspired by a close friend who is also a mother and bemoans her tendancy to not live so much in the moment with her child, but rather is drawn to the future, the next milestone, etc. Her wistful thoughts reverberated within my maternal heart because I am guilty of the same. When people ask me to compare S to K, there are only vauge impressions to recall, largely due to my failing to be mindful of the present and being preoccupied with the next meal, day, week, month (also due to trauma-induced amnesia as a 1st time mom).

This good and kind friend reminded me how fleeting are these moments with our children. And I am deeply eternally grateful for the reminder. There are days when I dread the task of having to go through the morning routine for the girls - S gets her morning bath, dressed, nursed + K gets dressed (meaning I have to chase her down) and fed breakfast (more chasing down). Then I grapple with the dilemna - how to keep K occupied while I put S down for her morning nap (does your infant fall asleep on her own? then you are living my fantasy.). The options include TV, sugary snacks, or allowing her to run aimlessly rampant - all these options strike daggers of guilt into my mommy heart. By the time I put S down for her nap, I'm ready for a break! But K has been waiting all morning to have mommy all to herself. And so I just fill up my coffee mug and push myself to spend quality time with her. What has happened is that I view each day as filled with a list of duties, that if not accomplished, make me an unfit mother. And when one merely goes through the motions of doing something just to do it, and not thoughtfully and with desire, the moments of the day are bereft of joy.

Naturally during these types of days I long for a day when K and S are both not so needy. But I also understand, with a heavy heart, that when this day finally arrives, I will merely find myself longing for the days with which God has graced me now. Ugh! Tragic!

My dearest Katherine and Sophie: The most I can do is give you countless hugs and kisses each day and may there always be spontaneous and uncontrollable laughing and dancing. Your childhood is like wisps of soft smoke - I cannot hold onto it. I can only do my best to blow it in the direction that I believe is best for you - toward God, compassion, independent thinking, appreciation of beauty and good food, etc. I imagine heaven is a place where mothers can relive their children's childhood and for the first time, live fully in each and every moment. I am so utterly humbled to be the mother of two such lovely girls. J's genes must be dominant in them because they are both so entirely clever and beautiful and sweet.

Truly the days are long but the years are short. So eloquently put by this fellow mommy: (yes I cried big alligator tears after watching this). My only hope is to not do anything I do for my girls begrudingly (even with that 10th diaper change or cleaning up the 10th juice spill), but to see every day through their eyes - each day as full of wonder and adventure and to share their joy in every thing. I will have no regrets if I can say, at the end of it all, that at least once every day I paused upon looking at my daughters and said to myself, "this is what matters and this is what i want to remember for all time".