Monday, February 28, 2011

Crafting... and goodbyes...

Now that my knitting swap projects are done, I've been focusing on a few other projects.  Miss Dainty is still up and down with emotions dealing with the deployment, which is expected, of course.  I've been at a loss as to what to do to help her feel better about the situation.  "Normal" deployment activities that I've heard of just won't work for us, such as a deployment count down.  I know her (and myself.)  It would not help us to see that we still have ### days left before Daddy comes home.  I think that would be even more depressing.

So far, we've been dealing by just staying in the present.  We talk about him every day, as if he would be coming home at normal time after dinner, not that we're expecting him to, and Miss Dainty does understand that it's going to be a long time, but we're just not dwelling on just how long it's going to be.  And of course, we're staying busy.  The weeks are flying by, and suddenly it's Sunday again, when it was just Sunday yesterday, it seems.  This is definitely not a bad thing.

Anyhow, after talking to a friend of mine, whose husband is also deployed, I decided to try making a few things for the girls.  The first is going to be a little pillow with a picture of them with Daddy.  I found some iron on transfer paper in my craft stash and was happy to finally use it... (it's a few years old, at least, which is probably why it yellowed a little bit, but they won't care.)  I'm going to let them pick what fabric they want to go on the back.  The sheet was a freebie from a friend who just moved today.  She gave me a ton of stuff, and I can't wait to put it to use.  =)  We're also going to make a scrapbook soon or a picture board.  I haven't decided which, just yet.  I will also be making some note cards to send to Mr Hubs that are ready to be written in and sent back.
I'm also getting back to Baby D's sweater... and look what I thought to do today. I don't know why I didn't think of this earlier.  I mean really, I already put all of our public domain book pdf files on my Kindle, why didn't I think about my knitting patterns?!  Sweet.
And last but not least, we said goodbye to our friends who moved today.  *tear*  Miss Dainty loves this little girl, and will miss her.  And I'm going to miss her and her mom, too.  But it's a good move for them, and we will definitely have to visit.  =)
Tomorrow, I am mailing my swap package (again.) Today's trip to the post office did not fare well. Hopefully, tomorrow's trip will be better!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


How much harder can I wish for an email?  a call?  an update right now?
I can't...
Communication has been cut off for a while now.
Thanks to an ombudsman update, I know he is safe, but still...
I hate it.

Update:  Saturday, 2/26
I finally got a text from him very, very early this morning.  When I woke up for good, I thought I had dreamed the whole text conversation, heh.  So glad communication is back up.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

My First Rav Swap - What I got

I received this package in the mail the other day:
A coffee cozy, sock weight yarn (but it's wool, so it will be finding a new home,) a couple of fun comics, a pretty spring colored cotton washcloth, and hand made soap.  I made sure to put on all my questionnaires and lists that I was vegan, and what that meant in regards to this swap, (what to send me and not send me,) but I guess I should have made it even more clear...  Although, I'm really not sure how I could have.  Oh well.  It was fun to get a surprise in the mail regardless.  I'm just about done with my swap package, and I can't wait for my spoilee to get it!  =)  I'll post about it as soon as she does.

Girls' Rooms Do-over: Goal 1

I've been meaning to decorate the girls' rooms since we first moved in... almost two years ago.  Miss Dainty had been so excited to paint her room and have it just the way she wanted.  I feel terrible that I haven't made it a priority.  After seeing how a friend of mine decorated her daughter's room, I felt so inspired, and decided to rededicate some time and energy into finally starting and finishing the girls' rooms the way I envision them.  **Hopefully we will get stationed here again!**

Miss Dainty's room is currently the one with the bigger closet, while Baby D's room is really nothing more than a catch all room with a crib smack dab in the middle.  There's Mr Hubs' drumset, a desk, an extra crib mattress, and containers in the closet in that room.  Such a great baby room, eh?  Miss Dainty's room is a constant disaster.  The girls share the closet, and I hadn't figured out a system that Miss Dainty could use in helping me maintain order when it came to the clothes.  There were clothes just about everywhere... clothes and toys.  The toys were in containers in a 9 cube shelf, which I thought would work great, but apparently they just have way too many toys.  So my first goal was to reorganize the closet and to put away all of their clothes.

The top right photo is the room's before picture, and is what Miss Dainty's room looks like "normally."  There was just no child friendly organization for clothes or toys.   Bottom right is the closet's before picture.  Ack!  No wonder I hated putting clothes away, I didn't want to face that!
So, for the closet I moved the 9 cubbie shelf inside, and put the folded clothes into it.  Purple will be Miss Dainty's and the red will be Baby D's.  That middle bar is just a shower curtain rod.  I decided against something more permanent because 1) I'm horrible at hanging shelves and such up, and 2) I know that not long from now they will more than likely need their own closets.  So, I just decided to stick with this for now.  I need a few more containers for the cubbies, but for the most part all the clothes are put up, and I'm pretty sure Miss Dainty can handle putting things into the boxes more easily.

My goals are:
  1. Organize and put up clothes.
  2. Reduce amount of toys.
  3. Organize and put away toys.
  4. Paint walls.
  5. Decorate!
So, eventually (hopefully sooner than later!) this room will actually become Baby D's room and their playroom.  The crib/toddler bed will take up much less room, giving them more space to play in.  I want a reading area by the window, and a table for tea parties.  I'm hoping to have a little section for pretend play (baby doll stuff, kitchen, cleaning, etc.)  I want most of the other toys (hopefully fewer in number!) to be in containers that will fit under the toddler bed.

And then, Baby D's current room will become Miss Dainty's/guest room.  She's been asking for a bigger bed, anyway.  She doesn't like how narrow her twin size bed is.   This bed was what we originally wanted to get for Miss Dainty's room, oh two years ago.  It's a single bed which turns into a double and has drawers for storage underneath.  Pretty awesome.  I might still go with that one, or I might just get her a full.  I think the Ikea one would be best though, so that she has the option of having more space if/when she needs it.

I'm really looking forward to working on their rooms!  Thanks for the inspiration Emy!

Friday, February 18, 2011


My little Miss Dainty is growing up.  Wanting to skateboard and making new friends.  Friends that are boys...  Of course it was completely innocent.  They talked about skateboarding and bike tricks and played a fun game of tag.  I couldn't help thinking that this was a glimpse into the future, though...  sigh... 

Monday, February 14, 2011

Celebrating Valentine's Day

Oh, it turned out to be a wonderful day!  So glad I decided to make the most of it.  =)

I told the girls I had a few Valentine's Day surprises for them, so they were so excited all morning (well mainly Miss Dainty.)  First, after breakfast I had them get ready while I prepared a pack lunch.  Miss Dainty kept trying to guess where we were going.  She never guessed right.

The first surprise was:  the park!  Now, I know this probably doesn't seem too special, but ever since winter started, we have not been able to go.  It has just been way too cold.  Today, however, was gorgeous!  It was 65ish degrees with beautiful sunny skies.  It was a bit windy, but awesome weather regardless.  They played and played and played.  We needed this today.  We needed the sun's warmth and brightness, we needed to just be out.  It was great.  Once the kids got hungry we sat down with friends of ours for a picnic.  My girls loved what I created for their lunch.  Absolutely loved it.  And their reaction made me so happy.
Some photo explanations:

Apparently, Baby D doesn't like wind.  She decided she wanted to wear her sweater and her sister's hat the entire time.  On the other hand, Miss Dainty didn't even seemed bothered by the slight chill the wind brought, which is obvious by her very summery attire.

In the top left photo, Baby D is sitting on her potty.  She decided last night, out of nowhere to begin potty training!!!  Flat out refused to put a diaper on.  Oh the things we moms have to do.... heh.

The "Love" photo is their lunch.  I used letter and little heart cookie cutters to cut the PB&J sandwiches.

The bottom right photo is Miss Dainty while we were crafting paper hearts to decorate the house with.  She loved the one on one time while Baby D napped.  We finished just as Baby D woke up, so they each got to place some hearts wherever they wanted.

After getting Baby D into a good mood (waking up is always a shock apparently,) we headed out for the next surprise:  Dinner at our favorite sushi place!
Miso soup, yakisoba noodles, sweet potato rolls, and avocado/cucumber rolls!  We haven't been in a while... since a few days before Mr Hubs left, so the girls were in heaven!  An older couple complimented me on the girls, and said how nice it was I was taking pictures to keep the family updated.  I told them it was for their dad who was deployed.  The husband answered, "That's what I figured.  Tell him to keep safe."  I thought that was really nice.

After dinner, we ran by a nearby grocery store and picked up some Tofutti ice cream sandwiches for dessert. It's the girls' favorite, but I rarely buy it because they're so expensive!  (But that keeps them extra special at the same time...)  Then, we picked up a movie at a redbox outside.  Miss Dainty picked out Alpha and Omega.  We came home, ate our ice cream, and watched the movie together.  It was a perfect way to end the day.  The only thing that would have made today better was if Mr Hubs had been right there with us, but he kind of was.  We talked about him the entire day. 

I kept noticing this on my fridge today:
Mr Hubs wrote that right before he left for bootcamp.  I was still in high school.  He hid it in a cd case in my bedroom.  I love that note, and I must have read it a million times today.  I really don't know why I was even slightly upset about Valentine's Day.  Even with him gone, I know he loves me every day.  I don't need a holiday to remind me of that. 

And then, this really put everything into perspective.  A friend of mine posted this on facebook:

"Remember that you are loved by a love that is deeper and richer than any other love, by the One who loved creating you exactly they way you are.  You are His prize, His favorite and His desire and He wants you to know that.  God loves you today, and forever."

I love that.
Happy Valentine's Day everyone.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Randomness and Valentines Day

My intention was to keep better track of what we've been doing, and especially to take more photos, in hopes of having something to show to Mr Hubs a half year from now and say, "Look, this is what we were up to while you were gone..."  However, I realize I've been slacking.  I hope to remedy this, starting tomorrow.

Lately, we've just been keeping busy.  I'm organizing another small group Bible study.  So excited about it!  We'll be studying Elizabeth George's A Woman After God's Own Heart.  The only hiccup so far is that our babysitter fell through recently, so I've been scrambling trying to find another.  A fellow navy wife suggested the site and told me military gets membership for free (!!!) so I joined, and posted a job listing.  About five minutes ago, I received an application that looks like the winner, so here's hoping!

The other day we had yet another snowy day.  I'm so thankful that it was not terrible here like it was in other states.  Yay for snow.... (not.)  I'm definitely not a snow person.   My girls on the other hand, love to be out there.  Usually, at snowy, freezing cold times such as this, Mr Hubs is the one who takes them outside and they all have a blast.  But since he is currently away enjoying warmer weather I assume, I was left to tackle the task.  Miss Dainty kept saying, "I wish Daddy was here.  He would love this.  We could have built a snowman."  She was disappointed that I did not know how.
This is what they ended up building... some sort of snow... creature.  This picture cracks me up, not just because of the snow thing, but also because of Miss Dainty's fashion statement.  She seems to have lost her mittens and scarf, so she borrowed mine which were huge on her.  And then there's Baby D and her mismatched glove and mitten.  Oh dear, my poor kids....  Sorry girls, Mommy is clueless, apparently.  Good thing they don't care much.  =)

This week, Miss Dainty also had her Girl Scout meeting.  She is still loving it.  I wish we could meet up more often though.  I really think she could form some closer friendships and bonds in that group.  They had a valentine card swap at the end of the meeting.  Miss Dainty picked out Disney princess cards that came with a bookmark.  This one was my favorite out of the cards she recieved:
Is that not just too adorable?!  I love it!  I've been feeling a little down about Valentine's Day.  Mr Hubs and I never really cared about Valentine's.  In all of the 11 years we've been together, I think our very first valentine's while dating was the only one we ever celebrated.  We just kind of realized how commercial and forced the whole ordeal is.  But presently, I'm mad about the holiday because it's not our choice to not celebrate it this time since he's not here.  Does that even make sense?  Probably not.  So, I've decided to make the best of it, and celebrate (for the first time in a while,) with the girls.  I have a few surprises up my sleeve for them on Valentine's day. 

We did receive valentine's cards in the mail from my grandma, though, and that brightened our day.  The girls' card had $4 tucked inside, $2 for each.  So, today, I took them down to The Book Owl (that little local bookstore I've been addicted to lately.)  They were having a $1 sale on "thousands" of books.  I thought he had been kidding, but no, there were boxes and boxes of books in an empty store lot.  No electricity and no heat, but I managed to look for about an hour and a half before the girls were tired of chasing each other and of the cold.

My favorite find?
Blueberries for Sal for $1!!  Score!  (You gotta love the mismatched socks.  This time it was not my fault, she insisted on wearing those, I promise!)  I also found a couple of other children's classics, and about 10 books for me including a nostalgic find:  California Blue by David Klass.  I remember reading and loving it in either in middle school or junior high, when I did nothing else except read.

Oh, those were the days...

Tonight, I am volunteering at church.  We have 400 balloons to blow up.....  should be fun.  =)

Monday, February 7, 2011

A Great Weekend

Friday morning, a good friend of mine offered to watch the girls so that I could have a few hours to myself.  It had already been three weeks with no time to myself, so I didn't know what to do with it at first.  I ended up going to a nearby used bookstore and spent the entire two hours browsing... and buying.  Buying too much, probably.  Is there such a thing as buying too many books?
I found some great history books, writing books, and a children's dictionary for Miss Dainty, and a few novels for me (like I need my TBR pile to grow any higher!)

Friday also brought awesome mail!  Yummy spring colored sock yarn I had recently ordered and a care package from my grandma (with more books!)  She's so sweet.
I really, really, really want to try to knit a pair of socks.  I still need to finish my swap package though. 

Saturday was rainy, so we stayed inside and relaxed.  I taught Miss Dainty how to play checkers.  (I'm thinking she is going to want to play everyday now.)  She's wearing one of her daddy's shirts in this picture... she's such a sweetheart.
And Sunday... wow.  Sunday I was blown away by my church.  The sermon was on the church's vision.  They covered where they had come from and where they are going.  It was amazing to see everything Believers church has done up to this point, and so exciting to see what they have planed for the very near future.  I'm hoping to be able to serve more now that Baby D is older and not so much a baby anymore.  Once they post the video, I'll link to it so everyone can check them out.  =)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Comic Challenge

Another 2011 challenge?  Sure.  Why not?  =)

The Comic Challenge hosted by Dutchie at BA Reading Challenges.

I'm really trying to broaden my reading horizons this year, especially since I have extra time to read now.  The graphic genre is new to me.  I never grew up reading comics, although Mr Hubs did (and he loved them.)  I often wonder if I missed out on something great.  So, I'm looking forward to seeing if I enjoy this genre.

The Comic Challenge

I'll be joining in at the Pow! level (5 comics read.)  Although, I'm secretly hoping to get to the next level. 
Comics & Graphic Novels read:
  1.  Bleach Vol. 1: Strawberry and the Soul Reapers by Tite Kubo. 2/5/11.  4 stars
  2. The Sandman: Preludes & Nocturnes by Neil Gaiman.  2/23/11.  4 stars 
  3. The Color of the Earth by Kim Dong Hwa.  3/21/11.  5 stars. 
  4. The Color of Water by Kim Dong Hwa.  5/17/11.  5 stars.
  5. The Color of Heaven by Kim Dong Hwa. 6/16/11. 5 stars.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

What's my age again?

I love sharing things Miss Dainty says with family and friends on facebook, hopefully giving them a chuckle.  I realized today, though, that I can't remember some of the things she's said in the past, and I want to put them in a more permanent place.  So, I've decided to post them here as well.  Here's the first.  I'll hopefully remember some things from the past and add them, too.
I made a simple dinner of tomato soup and grilled "cheese" sandwiches, and I told the girls, "I used to love when Grandma would make this for me."  Miss Dainty said, "When you were a kid?! ...  How do you remember so long ago?"


Boneshaker (The Clockwork Century, #1)Boneshaker by Cherie Priest

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was my first time reading steampunk, and I really liked it. I loved the world and the characters Priest created, although I do wish the characterization had been a bit more in depth from the get go. I can understand that having to focus so much on creating the world might have prevented more in depth characterization, otherwise the book would have been a lot longer. I found myself assuming things in the beginning concerning the two main characters' personalities and their relationship. In the very end though, there was more character development, so that made me happy, but like I said I wish it could have been dispersed through the whole book, not just placed in the end. My favorite character, though, was Lucy, who wasn't even a main character. And I wish we could have known what happened to Swakhammer! Overall, though, I really enjoyed this book, and I look forward to checking out Priest's other books.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A Good Start to February

Our first stop today was the grocery store to pick up a few last minute additions to Mr. Hubs and his friend's care packages, and then we were off to the post office:
Then during Baby D's nap, we did a bit of schoolwork.  Later, because it was a beautiful afternoon, we headed back outside for a nature study and some play:
Don't mind the dead grass...  I'm really not looking forward to all the work it's going to need in a few months!

This was Miss Dainty's first official entry into her nature journal.  I've been meaning to start doing this with her for forever, it seems, and just hadn't gotten around to it.  Well, remember that undone to-do list I mentioned in my last post?  Well, the  motivation is returning.  I suppose I just needed a few weeks to feel all "blah" about the deployment and to just sulk around the house.  But now that's done, and we can get back to doing what we need to do.

We studied our backyard's pine tree today.  Miss Dainty drew her own picture of it, although the perspective was really hard since we were basically under it.  But it was so neat to watch her draw how she saw the tree and her pine cone.  I joined her in this activity and drew on my own paper.  I'm not good at drawing at all, but I think it will be fun to do this alongside her.

These are Miss Dainty's two drawings:
I find her pine tree so amusing, it makes me smile.  From where she was sitting, that probably is exactly what she saw the most: the main trunk and the lowest branches.  The objects to the bottom right are the bird house and bird bath.  Apparently, she thought they needed more color than what they actually have.

Back to the photo:  the flock of birds was hilarious to Miss Dainty.  They were noisily squawking the entire time we were outside and they made her laugh.  The rabbit was an unexpected guest.  Miss Dainty startled it while she was running around, and he shot across the yard.  He was pretty big!  and gorgeous.  We put out some lettuce for him, and Miss Dainty sat by the backdoor eating her snack after we came inside, patiently waiting for him to come back.  (He hasn't yet.)

It was a great afternoon.  I love days like today, they are very uplifting.  And I'm so glad to be done with the "blahs."