Monday, July 21, 2014

Their Business

The kiddos have a pet sitting business this summer. So far they have taken care of chickens, cats and two fish. They are enjoying the responsibility and the extra money. I love seeing them interact with their clients and take care of the animals.

Friday, July 18, 2014

{this moment}


{this moment} - Joining Amanda in a Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Family Art



In our family room there is a large wall uninterrupted by windows or doors. Our couch is along this wall as well as the kiddos' computer. When we bought the house, Dave and I talked about what to do with this big canvas. Inspired by one of my friend's art pieces, Dave suggested flattery by imitation. We decided to create a piece of art comprised of five canvases, one for each of us.

With a list in hand, Dave and I spent a date night selecting canvases and colors. Neither of us are artists, so we asked my friend for help with materials. It took a long time selecting a palette of colors for everyone to use. I wasn't sure I liked the choices and knew they wouldn't really work with our red rug. Dave assured me it would be fine. I reminded myself that if I hated the outcome, the canvases could be changed.

Aine and Benton were the first to start their paintings. Both had ideas from the beginning. Aine used shapes and color blending for hers, focusing on green, yellow and turquoise. Benton went with a more hands-on approach. He would paint and then use his hands to further move and blend the paint. Only once he had to be cautioned against making a mud colored picture. Dave used tape to achieve his look. He vacillated quite a bit on whether or not his work was done. Eamon needed a bigger space, so he moved to the driveway. He drizzled and splattered paint letting the process move his whole body. My canvas was a challenge. I started with the turquoise and loved it. Then I added red, and it looked a bit like crime scene art. While in our lab space, I spotted a few doilies from my great aunts and great grandmother. I repainted the turquoise and used the doilies dipped in a darker blue to stamp the canvas.

Once finished the canvases sat on the back edge of the couch. I would change their order every few days. Finally satisfied with the look, Dave hung the artwork this weekend. It is nice to have the project finished. We have quizzed our guests when they comment on the painting. Most can guess each artist with only minimal help. With all this help, can you?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Swimming...and Diving

Last week marked the end of the recreational swim team season. This year in addition to swimming, Eamon and Aine decided they wanted to try out dive team. Four days a week for the past six weeks, Eamon, Aine and I have hung out for two hours at the pool. Twice a week, the whole family has traveled to meets. We didn't miss a day or a meet. They have loved every minute of it.
Now old enough, Benton was very excited to try both teams. After only a few minutes of dive team, Benton decided that he didn't want to do either team! I am not sure what happened, but he chose to stay home with Daddy. Eamon also made a change this year, deciding to skip swim team. He would sit with me poolside waiting for dive team practice. We would talk at length about video games or whatever he wanted to share, while lounging on towels or in camp chairs. Occasionally we would both read.
Aine did well on swim team. Her final meet was full of second and third place ribbons. She swam with stronger kiddos and excelled. Both kiddos loved dive team. Eamon can now do front and back flips as well as some basic dives. He is still working on his pike and tuck dives. Aine has a beautiful back dive as well as front dive. She can do a front flip, but is a bit nervous after seeing a teammate hit his head on the board in a meet warm-up.
Both kiddos enjoy swimming but really want more diving. On our off times, we have visited the public pool to practice a lot. They are impressed that even their mama can do a back dive. Benton enjoys these outings too and can now dive forward and back. We are looking into a club for the kiddos to continue swimming in the off season, but haven't made a decision on it yet. Until then you might not find us at the pool every morning as we had been, but we will be there most afternoons on the diving board.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

It's Been a Long Time

I have not been knitting much lately, instead I have caught the sewing bug. It has been a LONG time, since I pulled out my sewing machine. I think it was probably before we went on our Virginia adventures. I figured it was time. Realizing my kiddos are no longer wee babes, I sorted through my pile of adorable patterns for children only to realize many are now too small. I figured I had to sew the remaining ones before my kiddos made it into their teens. I gathered a bit of fabric I had been "saving" and set to work.
Aine is not the easiest child for me to make clothing. She is very particular about fit and style, however I love making things for her. I found a pattern in my pile as well as one online. I showed her both as well as a couple fabric choices. She chose a pink cotton found in her mama quilt and the Geranium dress (this was only after I ventured forth without her oversight and made a complete Family Reunion dress that didn't fit or appeal to her fashion eye).
The fabric and pattern worked very well together. Aine picked ruffled sleeves and tunic length. I made it a bit longer to accommodate her quick growth! Assembly went so quickly and in no time I had a dress for her. I couldn't wait for her to wake up in the morning and try it on. She saw it, and I knew immediately that it was a win. She loved it, (but did not want a photo taken)!

I have plans for a few more tunics for Aine. She likes the feminine look, but is also an active child. The boys have made their own queue of items to make. Benton wants a complete shirt and pant ensemble out of truck fabric. I will have to see what I can do.