Monday, September 28, 2009

Our Treetop Adventure

As promised here are a few shots from our day trip to Capilano Suspension Bridge Park in West Vancouver. It was such a thrill!

The photo below was taken from the Treetop Adventure which I think is a relatively new part of the park. We talked a lot about the Ewok scenes from Star Wars because it seemed like just stumbled onto the set.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Tears are Coming!

Oh my gosh. I'm feeling overwhelmed these days. We just returned from a few days at the cabin where we took advantage of our Nexus passes and day tripped in B.C. a couple of times. And then returned home to a messy house, a mountain of laundry, a computer that is so slooooow that I can't check the 141 emails in my inbox. Oh, and after the few days off, I'm trying to back into a routine with Beck's lessons - a situation that feels pretty fragile anyway. At one point today he said, "Mama, the tears are coming! I'm not sure why, but the tears are coming for real!!" Sigh. (This always brings up my own uncertainty about this path...Am I doing the right thing?!)

But the big news is that today we bought a new car - a new 8 seater Toyota Sienna mini van in Silver Shadow metallic. It smells good, it's roomy and wonderful, but I'm feeling a little guilty about it. It's true: we do need a new car and the mini van makes the most sense, but I'm on this frugality kick lately and after realizing that we can actually fit all three car seats in the back of our little Geo Prism (which gets great gas mileage, BTW) I'm wondering if we really needed so much extra room and luxury. The one nice thing is that we now we can take our little day trips and include extended family which comes up a lot.

So. That's it for now. I have photos so hopefully we'll put those up this weekend.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

These Late Summer Days

Well, we're into our second week of homeschooling and for an update about that, head over to the organic learning project, but be advised: it's not feeling so organic these days!

I love these late summer days - still warm and crackling dry, but the light is different - the shadows more stretched out and it's quiet. Ahhhh. No more baseball games, no more summer sports camps in the field adjacent to our house. It's blissfully quiet and we're spending these long afternoons enjoying our home and the yard. The last two afternoons I've spent sewing while the boys play outside.

Things really have changed for us. The boys play so well together and literally spend hours creating various set-ups and scenarios with their legos and all kinds of random stuff they decide to use. One day I see them "driving" my crocs across the room with a load of mini-figs on board and then like today Yogi kept coming up to me and calling me "boss" which cracked me up even though I'm not sure what the story was! We've been having some issues with our aging Subaru and for a few days the mini-figs kept having urgent conversations involving the "engine light!" coming on. It interesting to see how driven they are to play like this.

And so I've had a little more time to keep up with the housework, laundry, and even get some sewing done. Speaking of sewing,I've made two new kinds of bags. The first is a free pattern I got from Quilting Arts Magazine. I love the size and shape of the bag, but I had a very hard time trying to sew the sports zipper around the curve. The directions for that part said, "attach zipper" which wasn't too helpful! I made it as a present for a good friend so if you're Lisa, keep your eyes closed because here's a photo of it!

And the other bag is a pattern I found from a crafter blog called happythings. Now, I love this pattern because it's super simple, quick, and turned out perfect on my first try. I lined my drawstring bags with soft flannel so when the kids open them up and stick their hand in, it's yummy soft. These bags will hold sets of "story chips" which I've been working on lately. You can see them in the photos which we'll post in the next few days.

Other than that, Chris is making progress on our table. The legs are done. He used 6" x6" beams and they're pretty beefy. He also bought some cherry wood to make a contrasting border.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Blackie Spit

Here are a few more shots from the last weekend at the cabin. The first three are from Blackie Spit in Crescent Beach. See, I told you the weather was lovely!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Work Table

You will never guess what's sitting in our garage right now. It all started when I asked Chris if he could build us a large work table for the basement. It would be really handy for all of our projects and for the kids and for those BIG art set-ups. Our basement space is so large and pretty empty. It just seemed like the right thing for the space.

Soooooo, Chris checks Craig's List and 12 hours later we have a 10 foot long, 4 foot wide piece of old bowling alley lane sitting in our garage. Apparently there are specialized crews for breaking down old bowling alleys and they salvage the heavy wooden lanes and try to sell them to local people who then list them on Craig's List and sell them to people like Chris! It's made out of 2" thick pieces of vertical grain Yellow Pine. This will be a massive table! We'll post photos as it develops.