Sunday, February 28, 2010


Papa died this morning. I have lots of thoughts swirling in my head and in my heart and I plan to share some of them here. But for now, I just felt like I needed to let you know. I'm okay. Sad, of course, but mostly okay. I broke down a little in church but was so thankful to be surrounded by my community. It's a gorgeous day and we're going to take a little family walk soon. Thanks for praying with me.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Turkey in the Straw, Haw, Haw, Haw

That's one of hundreds of songs my grandfather, Papa, used to sing for me when I was a little girl. Back when I was small enough to crawl through a dog door and be swung up high to sit on his shoulders. Some other songs in his repertoire included Mairzy Doats, Big Rock Candy Mountain, How Much is That Doggy in the Window, and Jimmy Crack Corn.

He's dying. I am trying to wrap my brain around that. It seems so impossible and yet, here we are. The doctors think his life will end in the next few weeks. Weeks.

Will you pray with me? Pray that his last weeks are full of blessing and hope. Pray that Papa will finish strong. Pray that my family will grieve well. That we will rest in hope and not let bitterness or fear into our aching hearts.

Thank you, friends.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

In which I am That Sappy Mother

Noah was helping me put groceries away. "Thank you, Heh." I chuckled. "Do you like it when I call you Sunday? Or Sunscreen? Or Sunshine?" Noah started to shake his head but I interrupted him. "When I call you Sundae I don't mean the day of the week. I mean like an ice cream sundae. Because you're so sweet." Noah rolled his eyes in the way all first graders have perfected and simply replied, "Gross."

Two Birds, One Stone

I'm in the potty training trenches right now. Toby is interested in the potty. He loves the movie Potty Power. He is excited about big boy underwear. But he has yet to actually put his pee in the potty. So we're spending extra time just sitting and waiting for something to happen.

Toby is also really excited about letters. He loves the letter magnets I made for him and last week I picked up some foam letters and numbers for him to play with. Today I had a brilliant idea for combining letter learning with potty training.

Toby sat on the toilet while I held up the foam letters for him to see. I would say each letter's name when he repeated me I would hand the letter to him. Then he got to throw the letter from his seat on the toilet into a basket on the floor. If he made it we would clap and cheer. If he missed we would say, "Try again!" and repeat the letter's name and everything.

So far he recognizes A, I, Q, T, N, V, and W. He still didn't get any pee to come out in the potty but it's okay...Try again!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Status Updates

I really miss facebook. Have I made a mistake? I miss being connected easily to most of my friends and family. And yet, I was wasting SO much time online because of it. Ugh, what to do, what to do. Keep my commitment, I think. Facebook will be there after Easter and maybe by then I won't feel so dependent on it. However, I still think in status updates. For example:
  • Miles has his first cold. Hearing a baby cough is heartbreaking.
  • If I ever want Toby to do a chore all I have to do is ask Noah to do it.
  • I had a nest necklace order from a stranger! In Maryland!
  • Why can't laundry just put itself away?
  • Jeana Linhart is making cinnamon rolls.
  • Flannery O'Connor will probably not make my favorite authors list, but I'm glad I read some of her work.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Nests, Nests, Nests!

The first batch of custom nest necklaces is up in my etsy shop! I've had so much fun making these and I'm looking forward to making more! Let me know if you'd like one. There are so many ways to customize these. Some people are doing pink and blue eggs for the genders of their kids. Others are asking for traditional birthstone colors. And some people simply want eggs in their favorite colors--the possibilities are endless!

I'm kind of bummed that I can't link to these little beauties on Facebook (because of giving it up for Lent). I don't suppose one of my lovely friends would like to spread the word for me?

Thursday, February 18, 2010


I gave up Facebook for Lent. I knew it would be difficult because I've gotten into the bad habit of checking Facebook ALL THE TIME. But I didn't know it would be this difficult. Today is only day 2 of Lent and I've already clicked on my Facebook bookmark a million times. It's always just as I'm about to log in that I remember I'm not supposed to. It's good though. Because then I think about sacrifice and self denial and how I don't need Facebook. It will sure be interesting when I log back in after Easter. I wonder how many recent news items will be there after 40 days of no activity.

Monday, February 15, 2010

How to Have a Perfect Valentine's Day

1. Cuddle in bed with your whole family.
2. When the older ones get bored have them go watch a movie while Dad goes out for coffee and the Sunday paper.
3. Read some fluffy chick lit in bed.
4. Get up and have breakfast while gazing at the beautiful bunch of daffodils your husband brought home for you.
5. Go to church and connect with lots of different people.
6. Have a fun family date at Red Robin. Splurge on a chocolate milkshake and onion ring tower.
7. Go back home and send the big boys to play outside in the glorious sunshine.
8. Bring them back in and settle them down for naps. Smile as it starts raining just as everyone falls asleep.
9. Spend quality time with your husband.
10. Take a long luxurious nap.
11. Wake up and make a simple dinner.
12. Have a Tetris marathon with the family.
13. Get everyone into pajamas and then gather in the living room.
14. Have a hymn sing-a-long and listen to your oldest son read a chapter from Exodus.
15. Say bedtime prayers and kiss your children goodnight.
16. Stay up late into the night talking to your husband about tetherball and gardens and how much you love your life.
17. Fall asleep with a huge smile on your face.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Fleeping in the Fwing

Yesterday at dinner time I placed Miles in his swing and he almost instantly fell asleep.

Toby: Miles John fleeping, Mom?

Jeana: Is he sleeping? Yeah.

Toby: No. FLEEping. Fleeping. Miles John fleeping in the fwing.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Bedtime Stalling Tactics

Toby: I need water!
Jeana: Okay, here you go.
Toby: I need gloves on.
Jeana (sighing): Okay, I have gloves for you.
Toby: I need two gloves.
Jeana: I have two gloves for you.
Toby. Oh. Well I need three gloves.
Jeana: You only get two gloves because you only have two hands.
Toby: You win.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

New Look

I've been hunting for a new blog background for a couple of weeks but couldn't find anything that was cute and simple and had the bird theme we've kept for the past few years. So last night I decided to go with Blogger's Minima Left Stretch template and design my own header. Success! I love how it turned out. What say you?

P.S. Don't let the pigeon write the blog.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Bouncer Makeover

Before Geary's father died he bought a baby bouncer for his first granddaughter, Analia. When Noah was born Anita passed the bouncer to me. I passed it back to her for Karissa and it came back to me when Tobin was born. Now I have it for Miles. I cannot tell you how much I love that all these cousins have used this gift from a grandfather they have never met. He would have loved them thoroughly and they would have loved him right back.

After being used by four kids over the past eight years the bouncer was starting to look a little worse for the wear. Here's Toby sitting in it almost three years ago.

That little sun cover was broken and just dangled uselessly at the top of the bouncer. And the Hey, Diddle Diddle pattern with mint green cows and pink fiddle playing cats was pretty dated, too. As much I love this bouncer I did not love how it looked like the glaringly misplaced object in our living room. So I did what any craft master would do and I gave it a makeover. Ta-dah!

The old cover is still there, I just sewed
new fabric right on top. It is structurally exactly the same,
just with an extra layer of cloth on top.

There was no way to repair the sun cover
so I just cut it all the way off.
I like how the bouncer looks more modern without it.

And now it can sit in our living room without looking completely
out of place and distracting to the eye.

Besides, this little guy is distracting enough.

Bouncing baby boy in his newly recovered baby bouncer


A friend of mine who has a daughter in Noah's first grade class just had twins! A boy and a girl. I can't wait to meet them! My excitement about these babies bubbled over into two cute projects.

First, appliqued onesies. Or twinsies as I like to call them. I used iron on adhesive and then stitched around the letters. And by stitched I mean that I turned the hand crank on my sewing machine all the way around each letter. I was so afraid of pressing the foot pedal and ruining my work on one of those crazy curves. It took more time that way but I'm really pleased with how they turned out.

Second, I made a necklace for my friend. It's a birds nest with four eggs to represent her four children.
The nest is about the size of a dime. I love how this turned out so much that I'm going to make one for myself and sell them in my etsy shop. If you'd like one just let me know what color eggs you'd like and if you want your nest to be silver, gold, or copper. I'm selling them for just $15 each and each one will be custom made.

I have several more friends having babies this summer and I cannot wait to make some more adorable baby and mama gifts!

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Bumbo & ABCs

We've noticed that Miles really loves to sit upright.
This morning I tried placing him in the Bumbo seat
and I think he thought he was in heaven.
We're so in love with this little bundle!

In crafty news, I made some ABC refrigerator magnets for Toby. He's mastered colors and shapes and is showing interest in letters and numbers now. To make the magnets I glued scrapbook paper to those promotional magnets you get from pizza places and insurance agents--the flat, flexible magnet sheets. Then I used a stencil to trace letters onto the back of the magnet. I cut them out using small craft scissors and whenever there was a letter with a hole in it (A, B, O, etc) I just used my hole punch instead of trying to cut in the middle of the magnet. I don't know how long these will hold up in the hands of Toby but it was a fun project and they sure look cute on the front of the fridge!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

1/2 Off Sale in my Etsy Shop

Buy Handmade

I'm trying to clear out my inventory to make room for new designs. Valentines Day is coming up and this just seemed like a good time to have a sale! Go check it out!

Celebrate the Boy

Since I've gotten more into sewing I've been having lots of fun looking at sewing and crafty blogs and tutorials online. I was super excited to find two blogs that are celebrating BOYS for the whole month of February. Made by Rae and MADE are posting every day this month with tutorials, roundups, and giveaways for boy-related sewing and crafts. I know I'm not the only one with a houseful of little men so I wanted to spread news. I can't wait to see what these ladies come up with!

Monday, February 01, 2010

Girl With the Pearl Earrings

I'd always wanted pearl earrings. They just seemed so classic and understated. Pretty without being showy. I don't think I'd ever expressed my admiration for pearls to anyone before. So imagine my surprise when my in-laws gave me a perfect pair when Miles was born. I've worn them nearly every day since then.

On those days when I feel like a hot-mess-mommy (frizzy haired, wearing sweat pants, milk stains on my shirt) I put my pearl earrings in and I feel like I can brave the outside world. I may look a little frumpy in my post-pregnancy wardrobe, but I have something valuable on my earlobes. Classic. Understated. Pretty without being showy.

I know it's not really the earrings that make me feel this way. It's the love that came with the giving of them. It's the message from the givers that I am worthy of being adorned with something precious. Thank you, Garyanna and Bob. Thank you for making me feel like a treasure!


What am I doing up at 5:30 in the morning? I don't know. Oh, wait. Yes, I do. The middle child woke up crying loudly with enormous tears and rivers of snot. When I finally got him calmed down enough to find out what was the matter this is what he said, "I NEED A SNAAAAAAAACK!" So here I am sitting in the kitchen waiting for him to finish his bowl of mini-wheats and tortilla chips (his choice) so we can both go back to bed.

And now he's asking for chocolate milk.