Monday, August 31, 2009

yellow finch

I don't get the variety of wildlife in my yard like either of my parents do. They have deer, possum, groundhogs, raccoons, woodpeckers, hawks, owls, and just about every bird imaginable.
We do, however, have finches.
Finches are beautiful. Their little song is so cheerful, and their coloring is amazing. They fly in big swooping arcs from tree to tree. I love them.
This time of year, my withering stems are covered in yellow finches, nibbling on seeds. I love to look outside and try to count how many of them are on at a time.
As the breeze gently blows, the stems bob and sway under their weight, but the birds hang on.
I think the finches are one of the reasons I love the garden so much. They add so much life to it.


What we have here is the second ripe tomato* of the season. I'm going to try not to eat it all at once.
* the first ripe tomato of the season was thoughtlessly gobbled down by Bart. Selfish.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Emma update

  • She's having a great time in sunny Florida. Ironicly, it has hardly stopped raining here since she left.
  • the first night she was there, she never called us to say goodnight. I was a little put out (there was crying involved when she left!). Turns out she was asleep by 9 p.m.
  • Yesterday she texted me about 35 times, complete with pics, about how wonderful everything is. I've had beach scenes, dinner plates, big ass drink glasses, pirate ships, presents for Dad, Jamba juice, and the ocean. She loves to torment me.
  • Today she got to hang out with one of her girlfriends for the afternoon, and they were going to go to a mini golf/ go kart/ arcade type of place with her parents. Her friend Amanda and her family have a condo within a mile of my dad's. Small world!
  • she's been a shopping maniac. Already has bought gifts for the three of us. I wonder if she'll actually buy anything for herself!!
have a great weekend! September is justaround the bend :)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

FO-Madelaine dress

Sort of a cheat, since the dress hasn't been blocked and the tie w/ pompoms hasn't been added, but the knitting is done, so It's a FO.

miles and miles of lace repeats

picot edge-my first crochet anything

A while back, my friend Sharyn passed my email on to a woman who was looking for some custom handknits. At the time, I thought they were for her personally. All I knew was that she wanted some baby items.
After a few conversations with her, I came to learn that she is the owner of a chic online baby boutique called the Baby Gardner, and was looking to add a knitter into her fold. Could I knit some vintage inspired baby items to add to her shop?
We settled on a few patterns, and I have been busy knitting ever since.
The goal is to have several different types of things knit; she will add them to the store. When a customer orders one of my items, I will then knit it.
It's a fun way to jump out of my comfort zone (vintage? baby?), and hopefully get my stuff out there a little bit. I would love to grow my etsy shop into something really cool!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

350 posts!

Here's a peek of what I will be talking about tomorrow-
Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

all her bags are packed, she's ready to go

  • my baby is leaving first thing in the morning for Florida. Without me. I am so excited for her, and yet nervous and sad too. (much like the first day of school). I know she is in safe hands, and that she's going to have a terrific time. Why is it always so hard to be the one left behind?
  • Transition Day was good. Her ID card photo is very nice, and she got a good locker, which was on the top of her list. Isn't too pre-occupied with how many of her friends are in her classes, as long as she sees them once in awhile. I like that she is making more and more new friends but isn't fixated on one person. It's a VERY good thing!
  • I snuck out and bought a bunch of goodies to pop into her carry-on, so she has stuff for on the plane. Trashy teen mag, candy, gum, nuts. I also found a cute swimsuit and the most adorable pair of RayBan sunglasses in baby blue. Girl is rough on glasses. I got these supercheap @ Marshall's.
  • Hoping that she will find some pants for school while down there. Her Grandparents know where all the good stores are and plan to drag her to all of them :)
  • Last night she & I went to Target, where she chose 2 pair of Converse sneakers (buy 1, get 1 half off!). In my world, this is MAJOR, because for years she has been telling me how ugly she thinks they are. At TD many many girls were wearing them. Turns out she didn't realize that they come in low tops too. She chose a weathered navy pair, and a mauvish-pink color. They are awesome. She has had one pair or another on her feet every minute since. The best news is that I won't have to look at those ugly flip flops every single day until it snows!!
  • Evan has another scrimmage tonight. Hoping he'll get to play a little more.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

girl power

We won a game
We won a game
We won a game!!!!!!

Emma played some great soccer today, and the team is a whole diffent team than last weeks. They looked great, and played great. It feels so good to win! She is one happy girl :)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

first scrimmage

Last night was Evan's first scrimmage against another team. It was all very exicting, and the entire day before we went was spent preparing for the fun that was to come.
What came was an exercise in patience, both for Evan and for me.
Ev is on the freshman team, of which there are 2 parts. The Orange Crush, and the Black Defense. The OC is made of up of the younger guys, who are brand brand new to football. The BD is the older, second season freshman (because of where their birthdays fall, they couldn't move up to JV)
Since Ev is new to the team, he falls into the crack in between-too old for the OC, not trained enough for steady play in the BD. So he waits. And watches. And dies to play.
At first, I was about to throw a major tantrum because they were not putting him in. At all. 3 plays out of 20. We are here to support his play? I was seething.
During a water break, he was nearby, so I asked him. "Why aren't you playing?"
And his answer was "I have to earn my way in, Mom".
It killed me a bit. He has to prove himself to play. He has to play to prove himself.

He is #27, with the black scrunched down socks. And the tight jersey.

OMG! Do you see him taking this hit??

I have to learn to let go of my pre-conceieved notions of fairness and just let it be. Which is incredibly hard. I know he is thrilled to play. I know he loves it. And I want him to earn it. I just wish it wasn't so hard.
I would love to see him get his hands on the ball. It would be so worth it.

Monday, August 17, 2009


It was not a pretty weekend of soccer, overall.
Emma's team was 0-3, with only 2 goals total.
Evan's team was 0-2-1 Last year, they were practically unbeatable. Humbled.

I also saw a lot of good stuff, too.
Emma has improved 1000% since last season. She has a long way to go, and she won't quit. She will only get better, and more confidant. Her attitude thoughout the entire weekend was great-she didn't complain once about how 'pushy' the other girls were, or any of the other 376 complaints that were part of her repitoire in previous seasons. She took all criticism constructively, and was eager and prepared before each game.
Evan was reverting to some bad game habits, but luckily he notices that he's doing it. Hopefully this means he will stop them :) He played keeper for one of the games, and he did very well- his defense was lacking and the other team scored a few times. But he also had a good attitude and didn't let the goals get him down.
I am so proud of them both, and look forward to great seasons!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

5 of 7

Well, we are in the home stretch. And since both teams keep losing, we can forget about game 8. A blessing in disguise. I am tired of being hot, sweaty, and in the sun.
Hopefully we'll get a win in one of the three games being played today! Wish us luck!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

4 of 8

This weekend is the Rush kick off classic, meaning non stop soccer games Friday thru Sunday.
Just getting ready to head out for game 4. Hope it's better than the first three. So far, neither kid has won a game, which is just sad. Em's been working hard out there-the field is HUGE and she's running all the time. She was a tired camper last night :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

girdiron guy

Here we have a freshman Stallion. He's lining up for a play, or taking instruction, or maybe bird watching. Who really knows.
oops! He spotted me! My cover is blown. At least he can't smile and wave at me. That mouthguard makes him look fierce.
time for a water break. It's hot under all that gear. If you don't believe me, maybe you'd like to stop by at about 8:05 to help wrestle him out of it.
I love the look of concentration on his face, located directly under the clapper (?). He's getting ready to run a relay race for a prize, and he isn't about to be beat. Incidentally, his team won.
I can't say that I really understand about 90% of what's going on, but he is tackling and hitting and running plays and digging every minute.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

"Do I smell cucumbers?"

Look how handsome my pup is. Just sitting in the sun and enjoying the warm weather. I wonder what he's thinking?
"Man it's hot out here"
"Where's my mom?"
'Is it time for a treat?"
"Was that a chippie that just ran past me?"
or maybe he's not thinking anything at all, just being.
Sometimes I wish I was a dog!

Monday, August 10, 2009

it's the most wonderful time of the year...

Sing it with me!
I love the commercial where the dad is skipping thru the store with the shopping cart full of school supplies, and the kids follow looking extremely depressed. It tickles my funny bone.

Took the kids back to school shopping at Target. It was a crummy-ish morning and hotter than heck. Apparently all the other at home parents had the same idea, because the aisles were packed with other kids digging thru backpacks and looking for their favorite Jonas brother on a decorative folder.
This is the one time of year I can be guaranteed that Emma will not only want to shop with me, she will be excited beyond belief. She has spent the afternoon ooohing and awwwing over how wonderful her five star folders are, and how important and neat her scientific calculator is.
I loved shopping for back to school supplies as a kid. Nothing beats fresh pencils, crayons, notebooks.
Guess what else we found today?
our very-first-grown-from-seed cuke!
Last night we went to my sister-in-law's house to celebrate her birthday, and Greg (my BIL) has the most enviable tomato and cucumber plants. The kids were trying to out harvest each other, and Emma found one almost as thick as her forearm! I think we ate three, warm from the sun still, in addition to dinner. They were delicious.
It may be a single cuke, but I am in love.
Today's is Evan's first day of practice with pads. And of course, it's 86 degrees. I have been forcing him to drink water all day. I'm trying to not worry and be a basketcase,but he is little, and it's hot. I hope the coaches are as conscientious as they claim to be.
Happy Monday!

Thursday, August 6, 2009


Today was one of those days where I was fed up with being the chef/parent/maid/chaueffer.
I have one every once in awhile (gee, now that I think about it, they seem to cluster around my monthly cycle. What are the chances??)
Today's grievances were multiplied by the fact that I have to drive two kids thru town during rush hour to different locations. Why was I thinking I could do this? Did I plan to teleport myself? I just don't know anymore. All I do know is that from the hours of 5-6, going anywhere in Northville is a total pain in the ass. It took me 25 minutes to drive Evan to football practice and back home. Total distance? 2 miles. 2 frickin' miles. Shoot me now.
I talked to my Dad for a minute, and he said "Those kids are probably kissing your feet they are so grateful for all that you are doing for them right now" To which I responded with a "ARE YOU $#@%ING KIDDING ME?" Because nothing rubs the salt into the wounds like a whiny, uncooperative, unappreciative kid. Of which I have two.
To my credit, they both are still alive, to torment me another day.
Grrr. I may take up drinking in the afternoon, just to get thru the b.s.

(just kidding. drinking just makes me sleepy, and lazy. I don't have time to be either)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

he loved it

Day 1
he loved it
he's sore and stiff and sweaty
and he has a huge smile on his face

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

welcome, August

Last night I was messing around on my laptop and I saw the little calendar icon and it said 'Aug 3'. I was startled! This proves two things:
1. I startle easily
2. Summer has flown by!
It certainly feels like summer right now-near 90 and very humid. Emma & I were out hunting and gathering (i.e. shopping) and I couldn't wait to get home to turn on the AC. Icky.

a few thoughts:
-Emma may be the only almost 12 year old girl on the face of the planet that hates to shop. Seriously. And I'm trying to be mindful of what she likes and wants, but why does it have to be 7" long shorts? I told her the need to start getting longer. They also aren't very flattering on her, because she has a bit of a booty. Doesn't seem to care. Did let me buy her some flip flops and AE t-shirts though.
-my garden has had a pretty good summer. Things aren't quite as lush as in previous years, but then again, things aren't as fried either. Tradeoff.
-I am starting to get some actual tomatoes on most of the plants! This excites me no end.
-Soccer camp is going well. Em was really nervous, but did fine yesterday. Both are aching and tired. Both have blisters. Evan still has deep circles under his eyes. Tomorrow begins double duty. I'm sure this translates to double duty whining, too.
-need to think about back to school shopping
-can't believe in 5 weeks we'll be in Petoskey for Emma's first tournament.
-trying to feed 4 people at 4 different times of day ain't easy. Planning a lot of grab and go type of things. Tonight is BLT's. Mmmmm, bacon.
-got the best box of fun in the mail from a friend yesterday. Still smiling.
-I could use a Slurpee. Mmmmm, Slurpee.
-going to visit a friend on Thursday between drop off/pick ups. Her daughter is going to be thrilled no end when she sees the 2 ginormous trash bags of clothes.
-season 2 of Flight of the Conchords was released today. Yippee!!

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, August 3, 2009

the return of soccer boy, OR How I Spent the Months of August, September, and October

photo taken last year at this time

So soccer camp starts tomorrow, bright and early. For him. Emma doesn't go until evening. I am happy; to be getting back into routine regular activity. I am nervous; I hope Emma will step up to the challenge of an advanced team, and that Evan won't collapse from exhaustion. I am excited; to see them both play this fall. I am beyond sad; I will have to miss Ev's first football game to go to Emma's first tournament (it's not fair!) I am exhausted; at the thought of how many hours I am going to log driving them back and forth to practices and games.

And, AND football practice starts this week. Monday thru Friday, 5:30-8:00. I don't suppose we will eat together ever again except on weekends.
It's only thru the end of October. You can do this. It's only 12 weeks.
Wish me luck.