22 December 2005

Penguin tales and such...

Ok, I must make one correction, the car that we bought is a Passat, not a jetta, ok whatever close enough. Right now, all I care is that it has four wheels, is safe, and will go throughout the snow. Our poor abused car (my Saab) has been diagnosed. It is not good. It would have been fine, but we decided to be responsible adults and bring it in to have routine maintenance. That was a mistake, a BIG mistake. The mechanic changed the timing belt (er...let us just say wrong) and returned to us a sputtering shadow of my car. The once running car can now only sputter. It has been diagnosed (two mechanics later) and it is not good. We will see, it was so nice to have TWO whole days with TWO nice running cars. What to do, what to do. I know what I want to do, but we all know it wouldn't be nice.

OK, onto better subjects. We have unwittedly scarred our child for life. How? You may ask. I will tell you: The March of the Penguins..Yes, the terrific, heartbreaking documentary has turned our child into a perpetual penguin. Caden wobbles around all day holding his "egg" gently on his feet, just like a penguin. This is not the bad part. You see, the problem is that it seems this movie has equipped Caden with a great curiosity of the birds and the bees, where did I come from ,how did I get out of there, etc etc those kind of questions. It has been a cute and sometimes funny addition to our daily life.

Here are a few things we have done for the holidays, and some of the things just hanging around.

clove and citrus. This is one half, the other half turned moldy. Why doesn't Martha warn us of these things? :)

Our snowflakes have been hung...as you can see, we don't really need to make paper snowflakes, we have plenty of our own outside! But they are cute anyways!

Our stockings are hung...

and granny is hung! I made this ornament a long long time ago. It has made it through four cross country trips! She deserves her prime spot front and center on the tree.

This is such an adorable picture of caden! This was his present to us at "family day" at preschool today. Such an "angel" (he is supposed to look like an angel, with chenille stem halo and all, the body of his angel is made from a tracing of his foot) A very cute idea!

I just had to share this pic. It is a picture of a photocopy of "my boys", hands. I just liked it. :)

16 December 2005

Tis the Season..

to be busy for too many reasons...We have put an end to our car trouble and bit the bullet and bought a new to us car. It is an all wheel drive Jetta wagon. It is nice and we are thankful to have two cars that will safely travel from point a to point b. My Saab (which is now Paul's primary car) had been in for routine maintenance and came back to us sputtering and with the engine light on. Not happy. No no no, you don't take a perfectly good car to someone and expect to get back something that cannot even idle. Five hundred dollars later, all seems ok. We hope.

Sorry for the lack of pictures, we have misplaced the charge cord for the camera. I should be able to get one of the camera's to work.

Tomorrow Caden will be going to a school Christmas party. It is an annual party that the kids have, which gives mommy and daddy time to go Christmas shopping. We have been very behind with this whole Christmas stuff, we haven't even designed cards. This year, we are purchasing cards. With the new house and the car drama, Christmas just snuck up on us.

I officially "retire" from filling in at the architect's office on Wednesday. We fired Caden's daycare last week, so Caden has been coming to work with Dad. This will not work for much longer, and I cannot work too much as it is, so it was great while it lasted.

The nerve blocks that I have been doing have been deemed ineffective, so meds have been doubled. Maybe one day, when the total disc replacements become more reliable, this will be a better route. This is our only option right now. We have been thinking about getting a spa later. The doctors seem to think that this could help a little. Our pool will be great in the summer. It is difficult to talk about this, but it does majorly effect the way we live, so sometimes you just have to get it out.

The craft room is almost set up. All I need to do is to buy the ceramic supplies. This will be happening in a few months. I can't wait! In the meantime, I have some sewing to do!

I will try to post some pictures of our Christmas decorations and festivities, not to mention the snow...

05 December 2005

I Finally Figured it Out!

That's right folks, I have finally figured out my sewing machine. I spent hours and hours reading the manual and trying over and over. I went through an entire spool of thread! It is one of the simple Singer drop in bobbin. Apparently I was using the wrong bobbin. The lady at the sewing store was like "duh!". I felt so belittled and stupid. I was like "you know how it is when you are just learning to sew on a different machine...." and she was like "no...I don't" Well, wouldn't it be nice to be as perfect as she apparently is? I know I will not be returning there again. I am so happy to start sewing again. I am working on turning my Crate and Barrel shower curtains into regular curtains (they are not made of shower curtain-like material, just a normal curtain material. I went to the Crate and Barrel outlet a few months ago right as they were discounted from $40 each to $4.95. I got four of them! I finished one, it looks pretty good. I'll post a pic when I finish them.

Caden has been home sick from preschool, he has had a perpetual runny nose. Hopefully a little time off and away will clear it up. We made paper snowflakes for the window, ala Martha Stewart

We have had a large car dilemma. Paul's car blew the engine. We have been down to one car for about two months. It isn't working well. We need to make a decision. It looks like we are going to purchase a car (used) and get back to paying a car payment. ugh! It just isn't worth paying for a car to get fixed when fixing it costs as much as another car. We have it at the dealership (a friend). It will be fixed and then sold and then we will split up the profit (not much, but at least not a complete loss) It seems to happen all at once. The engine went out during escrow on our new house.

It has been snowing lots here. Nice and cozy! That about sums it up.

28 November 2005

Oh no, it has started..

Great, Caden has ventured into the land of talking back. No returning to the sweet, innocent days of respect. I simply told him that he needed to eat his popsicle at the table or he would have to go to his room (without said popsicle). He quipped "you have to catch me first". .. What?! What was that that came out of my formerly sweet four year old's mouth? Needless to say he was quite surprised that his decrepit old mother could move so quickly and put him in his room. Oh boy.


Happy belated anniversary to Paul's parents! Paul reminded me to send a card the day before and, well, um, ...I didn't. Sorry...there you have it, I am a slacker! But I did remind him to call (but he didn't need it). Paul is quite homesick, the holidays will do that.

Also, happy belated thanksgiving. We had a nice quiet celebration just the three of us. Sometimes it is nice to have quiet times, but I think we would much prefer to be around family and friend for the holidays. We received about 18 inches of snow for Thanksgiving. Now is is quite warm and we had thunderstorms with lots of rain. All of the snow is gone, including "snow turtle". What is snow turtle you may be asking, well, our kid adopted a chunk of snow and named him turtle. He toted that chunk of snow around all day. (when he was outside) He even asked to stick him in the freezer! Mr. Smarty-pants!

Nothing much else is happening. We are settling into the new house nicely. And I figured out that sewing isn't like riding a bike. You can't just go back to it without a learning curve. Thus, we do not have curtains. Everything is ready to be stitched up, I have gone through one whole spool of thread, and I still haven't figured out this sewing machine. I have a simple machine, but I got the drop in bobbin thingy, (everyone said it was so much easier), well, not so easy for me. If I could afford lessons, I would be there! Trust me, I need them.

I have been going to some new type of physical therapy for my nerve disease. It is called Felden Krais. It is really weird, but somehow, someway it does seem to help a lot of people. (http://www.feldenkrais.com/) It is supposed to re-teach your autonomic system how to move correctly. Different.

For all you lucky Grandparents and relatives, I have decided to help you out with Caden's wish list!
1. He loves anything to take apart and put together, like lincoln logs etc. (he doesn't have lincoln logs), mega blocks castle, geo trax
2. socks (this is my request)
3. a tee pee or fort like this (this one is from pottery barn..kinda pricey)

4. a leapster, once again, pricey, but we are looking to work on fine motor skills and concentration, this seems like a way to help out with that.

5. he is really into scooby doo right now.
6. a skateboard (not that mom and dad are thrilled about that request, but he does have a helmut)
7. games like operation, candyland etc (we only have hi-ho cherry-o)
8. an all terrain remote control vehicle kinda like this:
Something that goes on land and snow and water, he always is asking for one.

Just a few ideas, he loves anything with wheels etc.. He will love anything, I just know that it is difficult to Christmas shop for kids! (He wears size 6, 13 shoes, 8 pj's, and is quite tall and long-as you all know)

25 November 2005

Things I am loving..

From www.freepeople.com, I love this ornament.

Jeremiah Ketner's work found here
and here

Daniel Chang's works found at www.danielchang.net

These relief paintings are also very cool, by Alena Hennessey, which can be found at www.alenahennessy.com

That was then..this is now...

our backyard:)

21 November 2005

We Made it!

We are all moved in. It is wonderful to have our very own house. This is the picture of us and all our leaves!

We have made piles and even tried to burn them, but they are too wet from the snow that we received. Ah, the responsibility of home ownership! I have no idea why these leaves are stressing me, but they are!

We moved right before the weather turned. In fact, the final part of the move was in the cold rain. Here are some pictures my mom's friend took of the pier when we had some wild weather.

The weather here is always fun, something new everyday. Tonight it is supposed to start snowing again and it isn't supposed to stop until the end of the week.

Hopefully life will get back into the normal swing of things soon. We are so thankful to be in the new house.

09 November 2005

tuned out..

That is how I have been feeling lately, tuned out. Everything is whirling around and here I am just trying to hold it down. We will be moving Monday, we sign all the paperwork tomorrow for the new house. We are living in the midst of boxes and clutter, just the way that I cannot tolerate. I despise clutter. I think it is because I have so much going on in my mind, I cannot have it all out in my house, my refuge from the world, also. Well, all things are good, and I am not trying to complain. The good news is that we are quick at unpacking and getting organized. Yippee, we are getting closer to the end.

Tomorrow is my mom's birthday. We will be going out to pizza which is our little tradition that was created when Paul, Caden and I moved here a few years ago. It is nice to have some sort of family tradition, I didn't really grow up with any.

The job news is also good, it may or may not be permanant (ok with me) depending on how we all feel. I only have four days for this month and they don't start until the 23rd. So that will give us a lot of time to move in and get organized.

In other news, I have come upon a few cool things in my internet perusings...

By Jeremiah Ketner

by Fumi Watanabe, I love her work, I would love to get one for our new house! (not going to happen, too much right now :(

I totally adore these salt and pepper shakers by Perch. All of the above item can be found here

I also love Eendar's work:

It makes me so excited to be able to buy the rest of the supplies I need to use my kiln.

04 November 2005

Big News...

The house loan is done and ready for signing! We should be in our new house by mid-November. Yahoo! We are so relieved and excited, and a little bit nervous.

In other big news, I have had a job offer too good to not try. My disability allows for a five month exploration of jobs. It has never been my life's' aspiration to be disabled, but sometimes you have to take the deal that has been dealt. This job is part-time (I know I am not healthy enough to work full-time), pays really well, and is a job share. Caden would end up spending only two afternoons in daycare. I think it will be a good move for all. I will have more crafting money (yes!) and I think it will help me feel a little more secure in life. (Not so dependent) I seem to have reached a stable point where palliative measures (lots of meds and MD appointments) have helped me not to get any worse. Also, this job seems to be not very physically demanding, and I wouldn't have to sit all the time either. We will see, only time will tell. The way we see it, it doesn't hurt to try. I already looked up all the ceramic supplies that I will need to make use of my kiln! Truly exciting. I find out more on Monday morning, while Caden is in preschool.

Big changes, but good. Paul's car is still broken, but at least now we know what is wrong with it (top half on engine..about $4000) We will get is fixed soon, after all this house stuff is final. We have been so blessed. A wonderful person from church has loaned us a car in the meantime. So so very blessed. My hopes have been raised, life can be good!

I will leave you with some beautiful illustrations by Ana Ventura

02 November 2005

He did it again..

ooooh scary

This is reminiscent of the corn kernel in the ear incident, so mother's of young toddlers beware! Caden has done it again. This time it involved an orange tic tac and his nose. I gave him a tic tac, turned my back for two seconds, and in those two seconds, he inserted it into his nose. UGH! Orange syrup was dripping from his nostril, Caden freaked out. I asked him to blow his nose, it didn't budge. I was sort of relieved to see that it was melting, but also had the fear in the back of my head that he cold inhale it and who knows what would occur then?...It dislodged itself in very little time. Caden will not talk of this tic tac incident, and seem quite traumatized by the whole incident. Maybe this will keep him from inserting small objects into his nose and ears. I am losing my faith, but maybe, just Maybe, the lesson has been learned.

01 November 2005

Pumpkin time

Caden wanted a scary pumpkin..Here it is in all its glory (err gore-y...hehe;)

Including spaghetti hair and red colored sugar lips that turned out to look bloody. ewe.

Paul and Caden in the middle of our creation.


beautiful movie by Cube studio.
Isn't love grand? hehe

25 October 2005


Sugarcago (in Cadenese of course) better known as Chicago. Yep, that's where I have been. We had our second annual girls outing to Ikea and shopping-a-thon last weekend. It was a lot of fun and I actually found some affordable curtains! Ikea is so wonderful, it is probably a good thing that we do not live closer, our house would be furnished differently and our bank account would be stressed out! I love Ikea. Thanks to my wonderful husband for taking Caden to work on Friday and being such a good daddy. Caden and Paul had a blast, Kiwi--not so much. She missed mommy, and she let Paul know that by being annoying. She's just a baby, she can be forgiven, I missed her too. (But I missed my boys more!)

The house is set to close mid-November and I have been getting cold feet. Never once did I have cold feet when we got married. But this house? It is different. I just am so nervous, I love the house, it is in wonderful shape, good price, I think I feel like I am unworthy to get a house for some unknown reason. Like I am not good enough to actually have a house of my very-own and have a nice one at that. Oh well, I'll get over it after all the nasty paperwork has been signed and we have moved in. Afterall, I do get to put up curtains! I have never had curtains because I didn't want to invest in something for a house that we knew we wouldn't reside in for a long time.

Monday was a crisp visit to the pumpkin patch with Caden's preschool. I got to ride on the school bus with him, too! That was fun. No, really, it was fun! Thursday is picture day. I hope they turn out cute, you never know, it is always a surprise to see what Caden turns out looking like after I drop off for school-it could be scary, but I know that crafting is not scheduled on picture day for a very good reason!

Sorry no pictures today...I have to find all my digital images..they could be anywhere. When and if I find them, I will share!

ps..thanks grandma for the cute pants for Caden, he really needed them! He is a virtual bean sprout...a string bean!

pss..grandma-lini, hope that hip has healed up so that you are able to read this! We miss you and have been praying for your health and healing.

17 October 2005

Our smokin' dog :(

look closely...yes that is kiwi smoking away..naughty dog! (really we don't condone this, I just had to get one pic to remember her silliness!)

Close-up on kiwi's newest vice!

nicotine fit

No, no we didn't start smoking, but our dog seems to have an affinity for the nicotine. You all remember Kiwi, our cute little three month old pug in all of her early innocence...here is a picture of her just to jar your memory :)

That innocence has been shattered. Her sole purpose on her walks is to find any and every discarded cigarette on the road. Then she walks around with it in her mouth. If you could only imagine a pug with a cigarette hanging out of her mouth. I think she actually craves it, she is obsessed. I will take it out of her mouth and throw it as far away as possible only for her to find another. (the road next to us is the drop-off and pick-up point for a private school, I think the parents throw out the old cigarettes when they are done while sitting in line) Now, in California, only an idiot throws their cigarettes because you can start a wildfire, but here in Michigan this seems to be a very common practice that drives me bonkers! Now my dog is an addict ;) Gee, I wish I had a picture to show you all, I'll try and snap one later!

On another tragic note, I have had a highlighting accident with my hair and am on my way to an emergency hair appointment. Wish me luck! Paul has been sweet, we are down to one car (another emergency) and he has postponed a meeting so we don't have to look at my formerly blonde, now orange, hair. The Wagon has a problem and the mechanic has had it for two days and we have yet to know what is wrong..something engine related UGH! If it is not one thing it is another!

This, people, is our frantic life! Wish us luck!

10 October 2005

word verification

I had to put word verification on my commenting. Sorry, I know it is an annoying extra step, but I was getting way too much spam.

Pier pictures

I thought I would share some pictures from our walk on the beach last week while grandpa was visiting.

Caden and Grandpa

cruising the sand

Kiwi, intrigued by fresh water mussels

the pier, quite a breazy day!

Caden trying to chase the waves.

08 October 2005

Cute bears..

I found this link via
mollychicken's blog. Here are a few samples of cuteness...

holiday bear

adorable hedgehog


Speaking of cuteness, I must get this book

I love love love what momo has been doing with the patterns in the book. So cute!

I was, however, very fortunate to get this book:
Because I was drooling over the cute little puppy and bird patterns. No..I do not knit..but I figured I could use some of my home-made felt in place of the knitted pieces and use the pattern. I wish I could learn to knit..but there are so many other things on the list of things to do before that:)

In other news...it looks like we have the house! 99.9% sure that we will be moving into our very first home of our own mid November! Yahoo! (please continue to pray if you can..we can still use the extra thoughts!, this has been so stressful)

Grandpa is going home tomorrow morning. We had a nice family get-together last night. It is nice seeing family that live so close, but we never see because everyone is busy in their everyday lives.

06 October 2005

How did Dad get in the Radio?

My husband has been working insane hours for the past few months. We all know it is the choice you make when you start a small business, so we have been dealing. Sometimes we don't deal all that well and it gets overwhelming. One fact of this situations is that I haven't had the time to work on my art. Well, yesterday morning, I was driving Caden to preschool at 7:30, and we here Paul on the radio. It was a good thing we were listening to that station because he did the sweetest thing. He just called (as the DJ said, he was having a sensitive man moment) to say how much he realizes this is hard on our family and how he is doing it all for us. Caden knew it was daddy. He didn't think it was at all unusual. Caden just asked me, "mommy...how did daddy get in the radio?" He really wanted to know if there was somewhere we could go to get in the radio with Dad...which, in a way is true...you drive to the radio station (but Paul was on the phone) Very perceptive little gut we have. And how loved we are by his daddy. :)

Oh, on another note, this is my new and (hopefully) improved logo. I finally got my acorn right! (I will get illustrator under my belt one day!!)

now i want to make a rubber stamp out of it and a separate acorn stamp, I wonder if I will accomplish this before the end of the year? haha..

05 October 2005

more crafty goodness

more Japanese crafting sites

pochikonome This site has needle felted goodness..
cute needle cushions and pins..

chiko-no-me This one has clay modeling....

but I really love what Laurie has been doing lately over a Mod Dots..
you can follow the link if you have no clue what I am talking about..I wasn't sure about using her images :)

03 October 2005

crafty goodness

Thank you all for your thoughts and wishes on my birthday, I felt very loved. We had a small get-together at a local woodfired pizzeria. It was nice. I am not adapting well to this new decade..the big 3-0.

I have perusing the wonderful internet and found neat site... poppet It has cool felted animals and figures including...

I absolutely Camilla's new babies...
especially the coco colored one, named "chestnut" He is already sold! Her talent abounds! It would be so wonderful to learn how to crochet little creatures!