Ora et labora
~St. Benedict

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Pull 'Em Closer

Do you have a spouse that travels for work? Whether your spouse travels a lot or every now and again, it is never easy to run a homestead alone. And one interjection before I go on...hats off to single parents, like my mom, who did it ALL solo.

I tend to pull my boys closer to me when J travels. He is never gone long, but his absence is certainly noticeable. So, what do we do when dad travels?

That is easy, we spend extra time doing the small things that keep us bonded and closer. It may sound ultra simple, but I turn to hot tea.  TnT have their favorite flavors now (peach for Big T & peppermint for Little T), but once upon a time they would only take a few sips and let the rest sit.  The tea is not the point though, it is the love put into the act that is the meaning. 


After our bellies are full and warm, we move onto stories. I let them pick out the books, and we snuggle as close as possible in our most comfortable pajamas.


The boys delight in this time, and it gives me a sense of doing something wonderfully nurturing for my children.  It is that little extra "care" while dad is away that makes it seem not all so bad, and when dad returns they are always so excited to share their special experience with him.

Monday, January 9, 2012

T-Shirt Scarves for Boys & Girls

We just got a burst of cold and wet weather, so this project is quite timely. Although, these are great to wear in the Spring as well. 

I wanted to create these fun scarves for a while now, and got some much needed inspiration from a beauty guru named Carah.

Prep:  For this project, you will need sharp scissors & over-sized T-shirts that are pre-washed. You'll want to use shirts that are 2-3x's bigger than your normal size.

Step 1.  Pick a T-shirt to deconstruct. Local Craft stores have them for cheap. We got 4 shirts for $9.99 at our local craft store.

Step 2.  Spread T-shirt over cutting surface & smooth out wrinkles. Next cut straight across, starting under one sleeve & over to the other. You are cutting both the front and back of the shirt, and only using the lower half of shirt.

Step 3.  Cut the bottom seam off of the shirt.

Step 4.  Now you have a band, like an infinity scarf.  You are going to cut fringe on both sides (long ways), leaving the center of the band uncut (about 2 inches).  Don't cut the short ends/sides, because you want to keep it like a band.  We ended up liking the fringe wide, so you can experiment with that.  And cuts don't have to be precise. I let Little T cut it up.  **Helpful hint: we found that if you fold the band over length wise, then the cuts only have to be made once, but you must have sharp scissors for children to be able to maneuver through the fabric.

Step 5.  Pull & tug on the fringe pieces. Also, stretch out entire length of the scarf.

Step 6.  Wear & Enjoy!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Hermit Crab Switch-Eru

TnT were fast asleep when this was filmed at 3:30am. Hermit crabs are naturally nocturnal and I am beginning to think that I must be of the night as well.  I noticed that Mr. Soccer/Lola (Little T can't decide on the name) was in a new natural shell, but still hovering over the previous painted soccer shell she (Little T says his crab is a girl) inhabited.

Mr. Soccer/Lola kept standing on her old shell and moving it every which way. I thought the behavior was a bit odd, so decided to grab my camera and film.

Sure enough, it happened...