Archive for March, 2009

Balloon Bonanza

We went to the zoo and then out to dinner on Sunday night to mark the end of spring break. We let the kids pick the restaurant and they chose a place famous for brewing and bottling soda. They have fabulous floats. The kid meals are also served in paper cars. As an added bonus, when we got there, there was a balloon man making the most amazing balloons we’d ever seen.

Mojo picked a butterfly — you can’t see the intricate body and antennas. It’s really cool.

But even more amazing was Oli’s alien with a light saber.

DNA, being almost 11 years old, declined getting one.

Our table was near the balloon man and throughout dinner, we watched him sculpt one amazing creation after another — he made a monkey scaling a palm tree, complete with bananas. A pirate costume with a belt, sword, hat and parrot on shoulder, and several versions of elmo. He was really talented and were were completely entertained.

We are sad that spring break is over but glad it didn’t end with a bang — all the balloons survived the ride home.


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Silhouettes — a tutorial

I’ve been wanting to make silhouettes of my children for ages. I love the old-fashioned feel of them and how simply they capture the essence of a child. Over the cold and wet weekend, Mojo and I jumped in and finally made them. Here are some simple instructions for those who care to make their own.

1. Take a photo of the child in profile. It would be best to be against a light, uncluttered background but use whatever works for you. Upload the photo and print it out.

2. Stick the photo onto black paper. Anything sticky would work — like a glue stick or even some doubled tape. I just happen to love using spray adhesive and keep it handy in the house. Also, I used construction paper because that is what I had on hand. A nice, acid-free black paper would probably be better.

3. Grab some small and sharp scissors and start cutting around the profile.

4. Keep cutting. Careful around the noses and small features. We gave one child an accidental “nose job” and had to start over.

5. Before you know it, you’re done! Flip over to the black side and admire your handiwork.

6. Repeat and repeat and repeat!

On my list of “to-do’s” for this week is to dig out a frame for these three and to find the perfect spot to put it.

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Be my guest

From my daughter, to you.

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Mojo and Oli discovered the body crayons that were tucked at the back of the art cart. The spent last evening in front of a mirror decorating themselves.



Every limb on their body was sporting some color. After their bath and much difficulty removing the crayon, I swore to hide them in the back of the drawer again. But I forgot. When they woke this morning, the crayons were still out, calling to them. The body art has begun anew.


One finger at a time it continues. I better get the soap ready. I see a long bath in their future.

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Brain Boost

In an effort to boost nutrition around here, I have started giving the kids Cod Liver Oil. I’ve added it to smoothies and now I’m trying to get them to take it off the spoon. Today, I tried Oliver. It’s lemon scented and smells really tasty. He skipped around the kitchen saying he couldn’t wait to taste the “Cobbler Oil.” I also told him it would make him really smart. He opened wide for his dose.


But didn’t really like it.


A few minutes later he came up to me and said shyly “I’m feeling smarter. It’s working.” I grinned at him knowing he was imagining super-power brains. He asked “So, Mom, who’s smarter, you or Dad?” I just shrugged at him and replied “Hmmmm…..who do you think?” He thought about it for a minute and then nodded his head at me and said “Maybe you should take some Cobbler Oil, too.”

I just may have to do that.

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I am so NOT Irish….

In an effort to pretend to be Irish for a day, I convinced my husband that it would be a great idea to take our kids to the local St. Patrick’s Day parade. I went last year with a friend of mine on a cold, slightly rainy day and we had a lot of fun. The parade was filled with silly floats, people were throwing beads and candy. The crowds were manageable. Both my friend and I thought it would be great for kids.

A few things were different this year. The day was gorgeous! No rain or cold temperatures. The main highway to this parade is closed and under construction leaving one road to handle all the cars. The parade officials lifted the ban on coolers.

I should have seen where this was leading. Hours spent locked in traffic. Parking miles away from the parade route and dragging kids along. Wading through a sea of people — people sloshing beer on my kids and narrowly missing being burned by their cigarettes and cigars. My kids were elbowed, trampled and even nipped by a dog. They were not happy. John was not happy. I was not happy.

We gave up after a few blocks and trekked back to the car to sit in traffic for another hour.

Though my kids missed half a day of education for this event, we all learned something today. We learned that we’re not Irish enough to care to do this again next year. This photo basically sums up our excursion.

You can call it “the luck of the NOT-Irish.”

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Trash Picked Treasures

This table was found a few months back.


It’s from Bombay Company.  There were many scratches on the surface and the top was extremely wobbly.  Since the weather has been too cold here to paint (I paint outdoors or in the garage), it sat in the garage for a while.  I finally got around to finishing it.  Now look at it!


It’s the perfect companion for my Trash-picked Rocking Chair.

For details on how this table was refinished, click HERE.

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