Monday, December 29, 2008

rainbow baby

Playing with sisters' silk scarves this afternoon.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happiest of Holidays!

Us on Christmas Eve, after the obligatory jammie opening.

Beating a dead horse...but I still love the family star, and this shot has Marian toes, Reuben cheeks

AND a spit bubble. If you look very closely. See? Irresistible.

More when I find that rouge memory card...

(with all of the wrapping tossing, I am very very scared)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

fairy block puzzle

I love fairies. I especially love Cicely Mary Barker's sumptuous flower fairy illustrations. I check her books out from the library for the girls every now and then, and am kind of surprised when they don't get much reading. I finally admitted to myself the reason: her poetry just isn't that great. So I decided not to feel sacrilegious when I took an exacto knife to 2 of her mini books in making flower fairy blocks for the girls. We like the paintings best.

I found used books for a minimal price on Amazon (like this), and 1 1/4" wood cubes from Casey's Wood Products (I've also seen them at craft stores). The flower fairy paintings were a close match to the measurements of a 6-block (2x3) of the cubes: 2 1/2" x 3 3/4". You could recycle your own building or alphabet blocks for this project; just adjust the measurements accordingly.

I first cut the fairy pages with an exacto knife.The next step was to use a paper cutter to trim the prints to 2 1/2" x 3 3/4", then into 1 1/4" squares. I matched each paper square to a face of the cube, sometimes trimming another bitty slice off of an edge to make sure it fit the face without overhanging. Those little edges just wouldn't hold up to play & transport.
I used Mod Podge, glossy, since that's what I had on my shelves (I decided to use a smaller brush than the foam one pictured). I wiped a thin, but thorough, coat of Mod Podge on the wood, then quickly adhered the print square and finger-burnished it. I used another coat of Mod Podge to seal the surface, giving extra attention to the edges. Turn each cube on its side & repeat.
The Mod Podge was dry to the touch within a couple of minutes, but I split the gluing into two sessions a day apart, doing 4 faces the first day and 2 the second, to let them dry further, then dried them on a shelf, turning occasionally, for another week before packaging.

I froze on my great idea a bit mid-way through the purchases, afraid it would turn out sloppy, but was pleased at how easily and prettily they came out. I made 2 sets, one for each fairy in our household, and although I know 10 is a bit too old for block puzzles, the similar floral motifs could make them really pretty challenging, especially if the sets get mixed. I thought they'd be a good sit-still or take-to-church activity. The finished sets have a nice feel and almost do the illustrations justice.

morning smiles. sort of.

My winter baby sees precious little sun, but it's bright in the mornings in our bedroom. Reuben, fat and fed and rested, loves the light, and does his best smiling then.

Poorly (UN--I'm too lazy/time strapped to learn how) edited and of course not his best work, but this video is a bit of a peek at our wee darling, if you're one of those who wants to see how he moves his delicious parts. You know how it goes: baby is being cute, so you fetch the camera/flip, and return to the "hey, I was neglected!" baby who does not respond as well to a metal/plastic thing as to his beloved mama's face. Even when you do the good trick of placing the camera next to your face instead of in front of it. Because that just makes your picture get wonky/uncentered/focus on the wall. Oh, and guess what? Flip cameras don't focus well at 6". You can see a lot of Audrey's favorite thing: teeny lips in a round little O.

This is about a week ago, and especially for my sister Camie, who insisted on it. Thanks for loving him, even unseen, sweet sis.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

At the goat house lately...

Life is all about baby here.
In the yummy ear-nibbling, sweet milky breath way.
And the please-will-you-sleep-for-just-one-hour
and the what can be making your soul so sad/angry/please stop crying ways
(blessedly only for a few hours in the evening)

one month old & sporting gifts from friend Holly: hand-knit cap & Under the Nile organic layette long-sleevie. A friend who really "gets" me.

It's hard to be so small and so clueless.

But so loved, too. The girls are working him in. Also a little bit of Christmas prep. The girls have sweet projects going, many of their own design, and I'm doing at least half of what I'd planned :).

a goates girls collaboration that's progressingowl babies: I'm afraid they fall into the "what I feel like making/not necessarily what the recipient wants" gift category. But c'mon: they're cutie! (and bamboo-soft). Tiny and simplified version of this sewing stars pattern. Given with the book, of course. And there will be a nest!

Friday, December 5, 2008

one month

and getting plumper