Friday, November 30, 2012

Rooting In Community

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We have lived in Ashland a little over two and a half years now. We see familiar faces, we have friends, we are finding our place in our community.

One thing I wish for our children is a deep connection to their "home." I want them to feel comfort in their surroundings, around the people they see, and one day when they leave and come back home, I hope they feel a certain peace of familiar. I have been informed, however, that Hudson is never leaving home and will be living with us forever. Hmmmm.....

On this note, I was very excited to walk in the Festival of Lights parade with our local bookstore, Treehouse books. An amazing gem of a store that holds many of great books, art supplies, knick knacks, and many things Waldorf. The moment you walk in the store you are brought into a world of wonder, mystery, woodland creature land, and let's not forget the amazing gnomes lurking around. I heart this place almost as much as my kids.
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The kids and I dressed as Woodland princes and princess. I made us crowns with woodland creatures and glittery capes. It was so much fun making these things and then meeting our friends at the parade. We also made our lanterns the weekend before. Treehouse put on a lantern making event. Hudson and Nolan were VERY excited. Our first intro into parade walking ;-)
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My crew 
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The night sky welcoming the lights.
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Face painting for the kids
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Not your typical "christmas" parade. Which I LOVE about this town
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I also finally got around to making the kids their balaclava hats. These are super important for our bike riding since knit hats don't fit under helmet and for whenever the snow finally appears.. here's hoping.
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Sunday, November 25, 2012

A Poem to Nolan

I love when I find old notebooks and such... when they hold such tiny treasures that speak volumes.

Last night I found a book with a poem to Nolan.  I wrote it in March of 2011.

To Nolan
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That cold day in January
a mama overdue.

I welcomed you my sweet son
into loving arms so true.

Your warm body in my arms
greeted with those eyes that were sure to charm.

Slow days at home, I watched you grow,
your smell. your sounds. your life I began to know.

My heart grew ever so full,
from first smiles, to giggles, to teeth and drool.

Your head on my shoulder, then to my chest, 
for mamas arms, lap, warmth, seem to comfort you the best.

So goodnight my sweet boy,
your life has brought me so much joy. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Reader Question

I received a question from a reader today about shopping with kids.

The question: "How do you go about your shopping with kids? My kids lose control at the store and want everything and always want me to get them food!?! What do you do?"

The best advice I can give is not to give in. I very rarely take my kids shopping with me because I know it's not an enjoyable activity for them. I usually try and wait until the weekend when my husband can watch them. That being said, I do take them at times. I started at a very young age telling H (now 4 1/2) that the toys live in the store. That we were not going to buy things and if he wanted something he could ask for it for Christmas or his birthday. That really worked for him. He never asks for toys because he knows we are not going to get them. We also try and buy really high quality toys, so he knows those only come for special occasions.

Along the lines of food. I made the mistake of forgetting snacks once while at Target. I ran to the baby aisle because I had a screaming baby. I grabbed one of those puff snacks. You know the ones: organic, sweet potato, something or other fluffed air in a plastic container!?! Well I gave them to him to try and "get through my shopping." He devoured them. Then I read the ingredients:

 Sweet Potato Puffs Ingredientsorganic brown rice flour, organic rice flour, organic apple juice concentrate, organic freeze dried sweet potato powder, calcium carbonate, tricalcium phosphate, dicalcium phosphate dihydrate, choline bitartarate, vitamin and mineral blend (ferric orthophosphate (iron), sodium ascorbate (vitamin c), niacinamide (vitamin b3), d-alpha-tocopherol acetate (vitamin e), zinc oxide, vitamin a acetate, cholecalciferol (vitamin d3), calcium pantothenate (vitamin b5), cyanobolamin (vitamin b12), riboflavin (vitamin b2), thiamine mononitrate (vitamin b1), pridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin b6)), natural mixed tocopherols to preserve freshness

Then I felt guilty. He had a horrible stomach ache that night and he developed a rash on his chest. Not sure what caused it, but I decided no more of those "quick, grab, my baby is crying, gotta make it through the store" foods. 

I highly recommend packing a snack with you if you have to take your kids shopping. I feel that teaching them that going shopping: IE, the mall, the local stores, Target, whatever equals getting a less than desirable "snack" is not a good way of coping with our child that might not want to be shopping.

On another note, I try not to fear the tantrum or meltdown. If it happens, it happens. We don't always have to try and "fix" our kids behavior with giving them what they want. Persistence in saying "no you may not" have that, will more than likely warrant you better behaviors in the future. 

I hope this helps alleviate any less than desirable moments for you!

Friday, November 23, 2012

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.
. . . . . . . . . . 

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Winter Faire

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It is a very rare moment when you won't see me sporting my camera. I pretty much take it everywhere: the park, the mountains, the living room, you get my drift. My kids have learned  at a very young age to stop, say CHEESE!!!!, and then act "normal." I love capturing their lives. I love looking back and remembering all the amazing moments that I have had with them.

This past Saturday we went to the Winter Faire at the Siskiyou Waldorf school. It is this fantastic event that we attended last year. Last year: Baby in tow, a bouncy three year old barely able to stay in a room for more than 2 minutes. This year was very different. There were curious eyes, able bodies, moments of reflection. There was a mother and father breathing in all the beauty of this school and what they are doing for our community. There were teachers speaking of their wonderful experience at the school. There were displays of students work. Such beauty, such dedication, such appreciation. We want this for our children.

Adrian and I walked away with such a sense of fullness. Talking with teachers, talking with parents, talking with Directors.. they all embodied a certain happiness, an eternal happiness for Steiner and his teachings. They have such open smiles on their faces. They welcome you into their world and hope that you too will see what this lifestyle can bring you.

Waldorf Education and lifestyle has already brought us so much joy. As a mother of two young boys I laugh when people say "you must have your hands full." Such a negative comment in my eyes. I don't have them full, except for loving these two boys of mine and enjoying each moment as they pass.

So, no. I did not take my camera to this event. That's how much I cherish it. I wanted to soak in all it's beauty through my eyes and mind and not through the lens. I wanted to only remember it in my mind. I wanted to watch their eyes fill with wonder and delight as they met the winter fairy. I watched their stillness as they had their faces painted. Their able hands dip strings into beeswax. Their curious minds watching the woodworkers drill holes into their candle holders.

Being Present! One of the best gifts we give our children.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Look to the Right

I now have a preview of hats and you can pay through Paypal! YIPPEE!!!

Here's a close-up of the hats:
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Pinecone Elves: Tutorial

The days are cold and gray and we are spending a lot of time indoors. I have been "pinning" so many ideas of crafts with Hudson. This one was super cute and fun.

The next few weeks we plan on making many things for the holidays. Christmas cards, Elves, ornaments, wreaths, garland, etc. Hudson also has a boat making idea for all his friends. Yikes! Christmas isn't that far away I see. :)

Here are the cutie little elves:

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What you need:
*pinecones (around 2 inches high)
*wool felt
*pipe cleaner
*hot glue and gun
*2/4 in wooden craft bead
*needle and thread (optional)

This project definitely needs adult supervision for the hot glue.  Here is a complete list of directions: Martha Stewart How-To Pinecone Elves

How to include your child:
Hudson painted the ends of our pine cone with glitter. As he stated "everything is better if you add gliter"
Hudson then painted the rosy cheeks
I added the eyes with a black sharpie pen
Hudson would hold the pinecone when I went to hot glue something
Let your child pick out the colors. our elves have very colorful arms and legs ;-) 
We then added a stick for them to carry and glued a felt star to each. 
We did not sew their outfits, but glued them together. 

Post your pictures to the comments section! I can't wait to see!

Monday, November 12, 2012


In our busy lives of fast cars, fast phones, fast internet speeds, fast everything.. it's hard to just put all those things on silent and sit and wonder. To turn off the phone, to turn off the computer, to refuse to let the outside world in and sit deeply in your own mind. gazing. daydreaming. wondering. For just a second, two, three, maybe more.. you let yourself out of this hurried world and enter into a life of simplicity and carefree.

As the days are turning colder, we have found ourselves inside more. Summer, with it's beauty of heat and the ability to sit for hours outside, also warrants busy days. Bike riding, park dates, swimming. Our lives are full in such a different way. Today, we find our new ways of tending to our day.

Today H gave me the most wonderful moment. A moment. Captured in my memory. Pure beauty. Pure innocence. Pure wonder. After our cleaning day had commenced he welcomed me to relax on the sofa. He asked for some "Huddy/Mama cuddle time" (N was napping). I jumped at the opportunity, grabbed our blanket, cuddled him in my arm and gazed outside. The blinds open. The sky gray, cold. The wind blowing fast. The last leaves gripping hard to the tree, holding on for just a few days longer. We watched. We talked. We asked each other questions.

"mama, do you think that leaf there will fall soon"
"I don't know, do you think it will fall.. now?"
"how about now?"

"mama, the sky is kind of scary, but not scary like I'm scared, but like scary like gray."

30 minutes of watching this leaf. 30 minutes of uninterrupted life. 30 minutes of.. wonder.

Our lives can be busy, they can lead us to miss these moments. These moments when our children show us just how beautiful the world is. One leaf at a time. One gray sky. A morning I awoke without ambition to welcome the cold days. It turned out to end with me feeling so lucky to have these precious moments with my son. His eyes so bright and beautiful into this world.

Baked Fruit for Breakfast

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{photo courtesy of Blog: Beauty that Moves}

I am so excited to try this recipe! I had to share it here too!

Baked Fruit for Breakfast!

Sunday, November 11, 2012


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The weekend is coming to a close and my friends, winter feels like it is here!

The first colds have entered our home. Mom and Dad have been hit and recovering ever so slowly. I am a pretty firm believer of letting my body heal colds/flu/etc on it's own so my colds take a little longer than maybe some. I also don't really enjoy taking meds while breastfeeding, so I have made many soups to keep us warm.

I recently made this soup and it was very delicious. Something about Chicken noodle soup really warms the tummy! Recipe here: Yummy Chicken Soup
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I also believe in getting out of the house when sick. Something about the fresh air is good for the soul. It's freezing here and that means SNOW! We headed to the mountains for a quick "mom is sick and can't dare go sledding in the snow" moment. It was the perfect amount for our kids. The beauty that we saw was spectacular. I love breathing in beauty and that's not hard when you are on top of a mountain covered in snow.
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Little noses were oh so cold!
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Little raccoons took over little hands. We also spent most of the time putting said gloves back on hands!
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And of course there was lots of snow throwing (and eating)

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Hoping your weekend was filled with warmth and many giggles!

Friday, November 9, 2012

{this moment}

. . . . . . . . . . 
{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.
. . . . . . . . . .

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No child was harmed in this moment of mamarazzi behavior..


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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Baby Frederick

Last weekend I went to a shower to celebrate the arrival of baby Frederick. I was so excited to make something for a baby.. for once.
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I was so excited I remebered the book "Frederick the Mouse" Such an adorable book with a cute little mouse. I decided to knit a vest and add a Frederick applique.
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Welcome to the world Freddy! I think his mama liked it ;-)
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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Breaking the Habit

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I don't have many habits, but one that has been reigning at the top for quick some time is my coffee habit. 

It could even be termed a ritual. I love going to get a coffee. Mostly I like lattes or mochas, or anything that I can't make at home. I enjoy seeing "my" people at Mix and Noble. I like a hot beverage in my hand.

One day it dawned to me that I even like going out for coffee when I don't even want a coffee. OR. even after I have just had coffee at home.

This little habit/ritual is quite expensive for my stay at home mom income. $4 a pop each day. It all adds up. And all that caffeine.. can't be good on my body, right? 

So this week I am in detox. It's not easy breaking a habit, but, truly it needs to be done. I am thinking one coffee outing a week. That should be fair to myself, right? 

We shall see. 

Do you have any silly habits you are trying to break? I'm not talking serious ones here ;-)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Tuesday Rhythm

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Tuesday's are our Market and Baking day. 
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This picture was taken in 2010. It's funny because we had a "tradition" of always getting a cookie at market. It dawned on me that this huge cookie probably wasn't the best thing for growing babes. I took a deep breath and told H that we were going to switch to fruit for our "special market treat." Luckily I was met with no resistance and he said "nolly, we can have strawberries now instead of cookies! YEA!" I was pleased!

H doesn't have preschool today so we generally take our mornings slowly. We play a lot. Stay in our pajamas for about an hour longer and feel a gradual progression to our day. 

We always make our way to the market. We live very close and it's a nice walk. It's always nice to see our local farmers and talk with them about how things are going. I even trade hats for olive oil. It's delightful!!! 
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Our day commences with H and I baking something for the evening or for breakfast the next day. N and I bake on Friday's. 
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Our day's have typically been spent with last bike rides as we prepare for the winter and with lots of coloring as N finds a new appreciation for adding color to his paper.

And I found these two pics of a couple of items offered to sell. Hats and boots for $35. 
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Monday, November 5, 2012

Monday's Rhythm

If there is one thing I have certainly learned from my children, it's that rhythm is of utmost importance for the young child. That feeling of security and knowing what the day is thought to bring gives children a chance to relax with the feeling of certainty.

This doesn't come easy to me. I am a busy person. Not really "busy" per se in that I have massive things to do, but that I like to be going. I like socializing, I like being "out", I start to feel cramped in my house if I am in here too much. That isn't how my children are. They enjoy the simplicity of a day. They don't like driving around. They don't like being "busy." So, I've adjusted this about myself.

We have a weekly rhythm that we stick to pretty well.

Monday is: Cleaning day.
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Both my children are included in cleaning of the house. I find it important, as a housewife/meal cooker/kid taker care ofer/ etc to show my two young boys that they too live in our house, and they too will help me in keeping it nice. We live in a small house, so the instant we stop putting things away, is the instant it starts to feel cramped.

Each person has a job to do.

Hudson cleans the windows, sweeps the hardwoods, and dusts all counters.
Nolan mops the floors, helps put toys away, and puts the dishes away.
I do the other stuff.

We all three separate the laundry and they put them in piles to whom they belong to.

It's a great system. H has come so accustomed to it that he now wakes up and says "it's cleaning day!" It's amazing how excited they get for this day. They enjoy being a part of keeping our house tidy. They like seeing that they contributed to our house.

For they live here too. It shouldn't be just my job and it gives them such a feeling of accomplishment.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Hats for Sale

I have decided to sell my hats!

A custom knit hat with your selection of felt, hand-sewn, applique.
Cost: $35 (does not include shipping)

Here are a few designs I have done, but am open to other requests.

This hat was designed by Hudson. He asked for a sunset, a fox, a tree and grass.

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This is his trusty side kick. Wearing his brother's bird hat circa 2008.
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The two of them
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Other hats:
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And one day I will offer these things:
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Thanks for looking :)