Wednesday, October 07, 2015

The Adventures of Ta and Boddington

In our house, books are just beginning to catch on, if you know what I mean. The board books of naming colors and objects are fun, but I am so excited and eager to begin really enjoying stories with my children. Books played a major role in my life as a child and I've already enjoyed some of my favorites with George. Chicka-Chicka Boom Boom is already being enjoyed! 

So, when our friend, James Zwerneman, wrote a series of children's books about two cavemen: Ta and Boddington, we eagerly checked out the set and read them to George. (Rowan cares... oh not so much at this point in her short life!) 

To say the least, we enjoyed the first of the set with him very much, and just yesterday, as we were out for a walk, he began chanting, "Boom-buh-buh-Boom!" (Entirely unprompted!) 

Congratulations to James on a set of delightful stories. We're so proud of you! 

Are you looking for a fun gift for your children or grandchildren this Christmas? Looking to expand your library of delightful stories? Check them out!

The Adventures of Ta and Boddington!

Friday, October 02, 2015

Take 168

7 Quick Takes Friday
--- 1 ---
We've made so many advances. The world is digital, we no longer rewind our VHS tapes, our seats in our car can keep us warm, babies swing from battery power... AND, YET! I go to an ATM and MUST choose a denomination of 20 when I withdraw cash. 
First World Problem Numero Uno.
--- 2 ---
We got our family in the car, we ordered pizza from our favorite Brooklyn friend in the midwest, we drove 40 minutes... we got to Lake Michigan... And FLIES. Biting flies! There were swarms of them at our legs--probably about 50 flies per person... unbearable! In case you'd like to know more...
Don't worry-- we were there long enough to snap a few pictures... of only G! hah.
--- 3 ---
Do you hate cleaning mini-blinds? We have them on almost all of our windows and there were two of them that particularly needed a good cleaning--the one over the kitchen sink and the one in our upstairs bathroom. Instead of cleaning every single blind, I took the whole thing off, hosed it down and let it dry in the sun. Wow! The results were awesome. I've been avoiding this chore for... 2 years? And I'm sorry I didn't try this solution sooner! (Organized Home Challenge isn't dead, yet!)
--- 4 ---
I went for it... I found fabric paints... and went for it. :) Thank you, Pinterest.
--- 5 ---
 It might not be so impressive to some of you... But having everything on this list completed within the past two weeks except the guest room (no guests in the immediate future!)... and I'm quite pleased. Bring on a fun weekend! (And no, my house doesn't look pristine... but I've been working!) I've said it before and I'll say it again: Something is better than nothing.
--- 6 ---
Here's a blog post from Jenny at Mama Needs Coffee... Because, YES. Love is my vocation and it is not efficient! Thanks for the reminder!
--- 7 ---
Here's a bit of sweetness to start out your weekend!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Garden Recap 2015

Here we are--almost October and definitely autumn! Whew! 
And I'm happy to report that this year's garden was successful!
Gardening is something I enjoy doing, and I've very much taken to square foot gardening. I look forward to more boxes next year and 3x as much vertical gardening... because it really is awesome.

Here was the plan.
Here was my report in early June.
Here's how it went!

3 squares was plenty! Oh, and I love vertical gardening. They did beautifully.
All of them did poorly. Serrano, Mole and Red peppers... we saw only a few peppers--and none of them had any real heat. (Not sure what happened, except that it was generally a cooler summer.) If you live in Northern Indiana and know what happened for sure... let me know! hah.
4 squares was plenty! I have 19 (~1/2 cup) bags of pesto frozen for the winter... and I can't wait to start using them! Oh, and I still haven't pulled the plants, so we're not done, yet!
Curly Kale:
3 squares provided for our quiche all summer. I noticed that the earlier harvested leaves were a bit flimsy and wilted quickly. Our current harvest is more like what I'd get at a store: firm leaves that do beautifully when sauteed. One more square might get us a dinner veggie per week, which might be worth it.
 That story isn't over, yet... I've still got many of them in the ground, but they're doing well. Next year, I need to do a better job of thinning them out, so I get fewer, but larger beets. This year, they've been relatively small.
Lettuce & Spinach:
We haven't bought any lettuce or spinach all summer. We had a steady crop for a nearly 3 months... It was fabulous! My fall crop of lettuce is currently coming up!
 Bonus! Cherry Tomatoes:
We had a volunteer tomato plant grow under our kitchen window... This plant literally exploded and has given us a decent crop so far! And it's still going. A little bonus that I'm delighted by!
A Sweet Bonus! Nectarines!
Brian's nectarine tree produced fruit for the first time this year! It was unbelievably delicious! Looking forward to that every summer! 

Friday, September 25, 2015

Take 167

7 Quick Takes Friday
--- 1 ---
We've been taking lots of walks lately--it's a way to keep everyone happy (and I'll be honest, it kills time). BUT! George is officially old enough that I have had to change my route to not include a pass-by of the park... if I don't want to go. Because unhappiness seeps right on in if he gets a gander...
--- 2 ---
Siri absolutely does not understand the word, "We'll". If I dictate, she always enters "We will". Very much a (first world) problem.
--- 3 ---
We went bowling as a family! It was a lot of fun! I also got to learn something new... which is that not stepping on the bowling lane isn't just to keep the wood nice... it's actually covered in oil. When George bolted away from me down lane 20 and Brian was in the bathroom and I was holding the baby... Yes. We all went down. ! Unbelievable. Thankfully, Rowan was fine, though I admit my whole body ached for days... Thank God I was 30 and not 90!

--- 4 ---
We've basically done little to no television with George so far. But, sports tends to be a "Get out of jail free" card. When sports are on, it's like it doesn't count. And I was thinking the other day... if Brian gets sports, maybe I'll apply the "get out of jail free" card to musicals. They don't count as brain-rotting TV, right?! Barbra Streisand, here we come!
--- 5 ---
This week I called Apple. Because I want my Photo Stream to be the same on my devices and I want them to be reflected on my AppleTV screen saver. I have been unable to accomplish this... So I called in. And after almost 2 hours on the phone, I still don't have a solution.

The icing on the cake? When I told the gal that I wanted my MacBook Pro, iPhone 5S, iPad Air 2 to sync and show up on my Apple TV, the only thing she had to say was, "Weeeelll, that's a lot of devices..." 

Say what?! I'm still in shock. (I was sorely tempted to ask, "Would you like me to buy LESS of your products, then? That might solve it.)
--- 6 ---
I bought the mamajama diaper bag. And I'm singing its praises. Mega sale thanks to to MyHabit brought it to my door... and I'm way prepared. For everything. Even CHURCH!
--- 7 ---
Here's a video from Trinity School at Greenlawn (where Brian teaches), and it's one of my favorites so far: