Sunday, September 28, 2008

Our little wannabe.....

Poor little brother, he wants so much to do what his big sis is doing! Just this week he figured out that he can open violin cases. This makes practice time much more interesting! Currently no one is playing our 1/16th violin, so he's claimed it as his own and likes to saw along. I finally had to hide the case in the top of the coat closet so he can't get to it! He was getting it out all day to "practice!" Oh well, at least he's not throwing it down the stairs or anything! Don't you love his goofy half grin!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Little Girl on the Prairie.

E and I just finished reading Little House in the Big Woods and moved on to Little House on the prairie. I think she and I are cut of the same cloth, we both have this fascination with the good old days! (Hmmmmm, maybe I'm rubbing off on my child.) So this weekend we had a little mom and daughter date back in time, to visit life in a prairie settlement.

We were actually at a local heritage park to participate in a Suzuki violin play-in, which was awesome! I don't have any pictures of that because I was playing the whole time, but it was fun to meet some people in the Suzuki scene here in the city. E was able to play quite a few of the book one songs as well. Then we were on our own to explore the park.
We rode the old steam locomotive around the perimeter and decided to get off at the Prairie village. I loved this old house, and a woman was inside dressed in period clothes, telling us about her day. She had been up early to haul water and make soup on her old cast iron stove, and when we were there she was hooking rugs with old woolen scraps. We went to another house where they had just made ice cream in a hand crank machine, and we got to sample.

I love these narrow old staircases. (But they're hard to maneuver carrying two violin cases.)
Does anyone want to give this prairie girl a lift?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Corners of my home.......(or how to decorate for $20!)

I was just looking through my pictures and realized that I hadn't taken any new ones for over a week. Hmmmm, it may have something to do with my battery being dead, and I keep forgetting to charge it. Oh well, life has been busy. I have 4 new students, E's in school, D's working long days, and between all that I'm trying to keep the house clean and make yummy dinners every night! (Well, they're not always yummy.)

So here's a couple pictures of my living to share, this is decorating on the cheap. (I in no way claim to be a "decorator," just so you know.) I spray painted a bunch of random frames that I already had with a satin black, and framed these cool littl3 paper cut outs that a good friend had brought me from China. The three in one frame is from IKEA and the photos are flowers in my garden. The lamp is a gift from an awesome friend, the couch cheap on craigslist, and the luxurious velvet and down pillow, $4 at Value Village! (My favorite thrifting store!)

These curtains are a thick cotton sateen that I've been coveting from IKEA for awhile, and then I found for cheap at the above mentioned favorite thrift store! (woohoo!) They're very sloppily put up right now (I'm a big fan of the Nester!) but I have plans to hem them to the proper length and iron them, and put the finials on the rod. I was just so excited to put them up that I didn't care, but D says they're a little embarassing!
Thanks for sharing a little corner of my home today. I'll try to take more pictures this next week, the battery is charging as I type!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Art in the Park.

There's this great provincial park just 5 minutes from our house that hosted a big art festival this weekend called Art in the Park! I told E about a few days earlier and she was counting down the days, so excited to go! She even packed a bag with her little sketch book and markers to do her "art in the park." There were about 30 or 40 artists working right there in the park in whatever medium they used, sculpture, painting, needlepoint, mosiacs, and then some fun booths for kids. And lots of exhibited work as well.
E was making an art trading card that she traded with an artist there for one of her cards, and then all the kids' cards were put in an exhibit at the park visitor centre.
G chasing bubbles, of course.
We were all posing on this cool rock, but apparently G thought my turn was over. Don't you love my cheezy posed grin! :)
This is the gorgeous ranch house in the park, from a real working ranch at the turn of the century. Now it's a fancy schmancy restaurant that I want D to take me to someday! Yum!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Easy, Cheap Homemade Laundry Soap!

I made some of this up today and thought I'd share. I don't know exactly how much it costs, but definitely less than store-bought laundry detergent. And you know exactly what's in it! :)

1 bar of grated soap (I bought bars of Sunlight laundry soap, in the laundry aisle, comes in packs of two for 3$ or so.)
1 1/2 cup Borax
1 1/2 cup Washing Soda
1 cup oxyclean (optional, but I used it)

Grate the soap with a fine grater, and then I grind mine up in my little mini food processor to make it really powdery, so it'll disolve well. Then just combine everything. The borax and washing soda you can usually buy in the cleaning or laundry aisle. Use 1 Tablespoon for regular loads, 2 T for heavier loads. It works really well on clothes. I don't love it on diapers, but I've used it before. Ideally I like to have this and Tide Free, use the Tide for diapers and this for clothes, and then every once in awhile do clothes with Tide, just to made sure there's no soap residue. That's my laundry soap routine. (Pretty exciting, huh?)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

First Day of School........

Here's our big school girl, eagerly awaiting being let into the classroom! She was so excited about today, and described it perfectly saying that she didn't understand why her brain was scared and excited at the same time. I peeked into the classroom as all the kids were getting settled in with their books on the carpet, these were her new friends she said.
A quick shot out in our yard before walking over to the school, doesn't she look wise and grown up!
She says her smile is silly here, but I think she's adorable, of course! She's doing a year of Kindergarten again this year, because we decided that her late birthday makes her so young compared to everyone. And she's a small little girl too, so now she'll be one of the oldest in her class, and not so small. She's thrilled about another year of Kindergarten, who wouldn't want to do that year again. And last year she was in a very small private kinder, this year it's a big public school with all the older kids as well, it'll be a fun new change. I was reminiscing and found this post from last year's first day, she looks so much older I think!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Apples apples apples.......

I will eventually sit down and write a bit more about what we're up to, since life is picking up speed with September starting! But for now, enjoy a little of our apple love! I was telling mom today, I don't know why everyone who lives in an agreeable climate doesn't plant a whole yard full of fruit trees, they're miraculous! My kids think that if you're hungry and you need a snack, you head out to the apple tree, I love it! We've picked and picked and picked, and chopped, and cooked, and dried, and juiced, and canned, and baked, and we still can't get seem to get enough. Hopefully I can keep up my apple processing steam so we don't let baskets and baskets of them go to waste. Anyone want to come and help themselves? :)

(These are the big crabapples, we also have tiny crabapples, and large full sized apples. Fun!)