We've started our spring nature table: aÂ yellow playsilk, a little glass jar of grape hyacinths from our garden, a couple of rabbits from Maia's animal collection, a nest with eggs (not real), and our basket of rocks and sculpeyÂ nature prints (time to make some more, btw). It's a work in progress. I'd like to bring in more real nature, rather than stand-ins such as the toy rabbits and nest, although I like those too. And I'm trying to think of other good ideas for a spring table. I'm thinking maybe growing a pot of grass or herbs (like here) and bringing in more flowers as well as any real egg fragments we find... I also loveÂ this fleece basket with pussy willow eggs. Any other ideas?
I made Maia a couple of skirts following this easy skirt tutorial by Two Little BansheesÂ which I made even easier by using fold over elastic for the waist as in Angry Chicken's 5 minute skirt. For the second skirt I used the finished edge of the fabric for the bottom (by accident!) so decided not to hem the bottom. All in all, super quick and easy. And Maia loves them. Which won't always be the case, will it? One day instead of clamoring for me to sew something for her or just assuming everything's for her (as in the case of my first little knitting attemptÂ which is now a baby's bed -- do you see it above?), she'll probably turn up her nose at my home sewn clothes.
But for now, I'll take advantage of her excitement over my sewing. By the way, can you make out the sweet potatoes I'm starting in the window? They've had lots of roots for a while now, but still no sign of any shoots above. Has anyoneÂ grown these before? I'm not sure if I'm doing something wrong or if it just takes a really long time for the shoots. They are held half out of jars of water with toothpicks following directions I found in a book.
Here's the second skirt, made a little shorter than the first.
And a detail of the fold over elastic. I love this stuff! My supply is dwindling though, so it's about time to place another order with Sewzanne's.
P.S. I almost forgot -- My friend Jenny said she made this skirt using a ribbon at the bottom for the hem -- folded over the fabric edge I think. Sounds pretty! I may try that next time...
I told you how much Maia liked reading about bodies and how they work. Well, her obsession has reached new heights thanks to Usborne's See Inside Your Body, kindly lent to us by a friend. The detail in this book is wonderful, and not only that, but each page has multiple flaps you can lift -- a three year old's joy. This has been our go-to bedtime and naptime book (and I'm starting to think about encouraging a new direction for her interest!)
The body tracing is a project that I've been wanting to do for a while (it's on the list) and was sure Maia would enjoy. I connected two pieces of poster board on the back with tape, taped the whole thing to the floor, and asked Maia if she wanted me to trace her body. Yes, of course. Then we got out her body book and filled in the various parts. I drew most of the organs at her request. She drew the veins and arteries (her favorites) and the brain, eyes, nose, mouth, and teeth.
She was so proud of this and wanted to hang it up with the feet (almost) touching the floor so she could see it all at her level.
Thank you all for your wonderful comments and congratulations! It sure is fun having a blog. I feel like I have a great group of friends, even if I can't see most of you. Now if I could just get you all to Asheville for an afternoon... Wouldn't that be something?
Anyway, some of you mentioned sewing and knitting for the baby and I have been thinking about projects to do. I haven't done any real sewing since last summer, and as you know I'm just a beginner on the knitting front. But here are some projects I've seen around the web lately that I'd like to try -- not all are baby things.
By the way, I've been making lots of lists lately, and truth is, I'm better at making lists than at following through. But still, the list making continues.
This easy skirt tutorial by Two Little Banshees
Heather Bailey's Bitty Booties
Fabric baby shoes by Maked Crafts
Kids play tent at Sew, Mama, Sew!
Buttercup bag from Made by Rae
A perpetual cloth calendar at I Heart Linen
Fuzzy blankets at Make Your Own Baby Stuff
I'm pregnant! Our little family will be expanding and Maia is going to be a big sister (which she isÂ oh, soÂ excited about!). I'm at the beginning of my second trimester and the baby is dueÂ in September, so quite a ways to go, but I thought I'd share the big news. We are all very happy!
Maia willed this pregnancy, I'm sure. For months she's been saying she's growing a baby sister in her belly. When I tell her that she can grow a baby when she's an adult, but not yet, she says, "then you can grow my baby sister in your belly." Heaven knows what she'll say if it's a boy!
I starting doing some spring cleaning this weekend (including washing the curtains and the windows, which sad to say, never gets done) but got waylaid by this project. Can you say procrastination?
I've been wanting to set up a writing/art table for Maia in the living room and finally did it. I love the Melissa Sweet counting birds! She also makes beautiful alphabet cards. I've been wanting to hang these for a while now and just realized they would be perfect for above the desk.
Here's what's on the table now: a pad of paper, various stencils (Maia loves stencils right now), her marker holder, a bell jar with colored pencils, some envelopes, a sheet of one cent stamps, a box with tape, scissors, and glue stick, and her Kumon cutting book.
I'm not big into workbooks, but Maia's other love is cutting with scissors, and she has really enjoyed the cutting projects in this book. She also cuts everything else that she can, unfortunately, including, most recently, her doll's hair. The table is still a work in progress and I'd love any suggestions you have.
We also celebrated Harry's birthday this weekend! Happy birthday sweetie. This is the special "melting birthday cake" look by the way. It's best achieved when you realize you only have one cake pan in the house and so substitute a pie pan for the second layer. Genius, eh?
Our friends just had their baby (Justin and Nathan have a baby brother!). Maia and I got the e-mail and baby photo a couple of days ago and immediately started making this lemon cake to celebrate the birth. The nice thing about this recipe? It makes two loaf cakes, so we got to taste test one first before taking the other over. Yum! Lemony delicious.Â It would be excellent with strawberries or blueberries, although I probably shouldn't say that, since we didn't deliver the cake with any fruit.
Maia drew a picture of the new baby (above) as a gift.
She also drew this picture, which I love. She requested that I drawÂ a baby this time and then proceeded to draw a mommy holding the baby. I love little kid drawings.
I love this post (and photo) from Playful Learning on their studio (and this one about the same studio on Ohdeedoh). These, as well as Lori's posts at Camp Creek Press, make me want to reconsider how our studio is set up. We haven't made any big changes in the past year except that it's gotten progressively messier and much more cluttered. It's time to do a major clean and to think about re-organizing, especially now that Maia is older. I'd like to make all the art supplies more accessible so that she can go back there and start working on her own whenever she wants. Some materials are accessible now, but many are not, including the paints which are in gallon-sized jugs too heavy for her to handle. I'm going to read more about the Reggio approach as I think about re-organizing.
I'll keep you posted.