Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Michaelmas




Just a few quick pictures as I'm supposed to be running off to work this morning.  I hope you had a wonderful feast day!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Still Hurting



Last week I cleaned out my sons clothes.

Not just the regular seasonal clean-out, but THE clean out.  All those things I was saving to be that intelligent, frugal mama are gone.  I went from 5 totes and two piles of our recent out-growns to two and half totes of things I just couldn't see go yet.  This included one tote, the newborn to six month clothes, that I couldn't even face opening.

Instead of thoughtfully organized, cleaned and stored clothes in my closet for "the next time" I have two totes by my door for the consignment store and bags of clothes being sent off for their next round of hand me downs.  They are the pants, shirts and shoes that will NEVER be worn by another Walter baby.  It is not easy to write that, not at all.

It had to be done.  Things don't last in storage for 5+ years; elastic wears out and benevolent stains eventually do their damage.  Those clothes weren't doing anyone any good in those boxes and now they will.  They're going to families who need them, to babies who are actually here and who will actually wear them.  It was both a liberating and draining decision.

So here we are, about a month and a half away from my last D&C and where does that leave me?

In a sort of limbo.  I've made decisions about the medical side of things - "yes" to blood clotting tests, but "no" to genetic tests.  If there's nothing I can do about it, I don't want to know right now.  I still desperately want more children, but the thought of my fourth first trimester in a year and a half physically turns my stomach in flips.  I just can't do it.  Physically and emotionally I'm drained and I need a break.

I'm doing my best to enjoy the happiness I get everyday from my son and not let the ghosts of my babies detract from enjoying what I have.  I'm throwing myself into other activities with abandon, but realizing that I'm probably just distracting myself all the anniversaries I still have to live through before next spring.

I need to get back to where I was last spring before I can try again.  There are practical aspects - finances, sick leave, etc. that have been sapped from so many doctors visits, sudden procedures and even just retail therapy and there are the deeper aspects and I have a feeling those will take longer.  You can never be prepared for something like this happen, but I can prepare myself for our future.  I can use this experience and understand how much more I'm willing to give to this.

I feel like Cathy in the beginning of "The Last Five Years" in her first song, unable to see how she got there and what she did to deserve her heart break.  " ...and where can I turn? Covered with scars I did nothing to earn Maybe there's somewhere a lesson to learn..."  I'm coming up on five years of trying to be a mother - that page will turn right around the last babies due date in March and I don't know what I've done to deserve all of this.  But as Cathy says "...but that wouldn't change the fact, that wouldn't speed time.  Once the foundations cracked and I'm.... still hurting."

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Preparing for the Feast

 




Been preparing for Michaelmas over the last few days.  Put the finishing touches on the autumn trees and brought out the pinecone hedgehogs.  Switched out our "Waldorf" picture.  Made a Michaelmas Candle.  I modged-podged cut out tissue paper on a glass pillar candle based on this transparency I love.  I have seen other "dragon candles" out there, but I wanted to make sure that we were focusing on the dragon aspect too much and forgetting that this is a celebration of the angels.

I think if I do this next year the background and angel will need to be a different color to make him stand out, but we know he's there.  Was planning on lighting the candle each night to do a basic St. Michael "novena" - just praying the St. Michael Protection Prayer - to teach Henry, but our first two nights were a bust thanks to a melt down and then an unplanned sleepover at Grandmas.  Oh well, there's always next year.

I think we'll be doing our feast on Saturday since the husBen works Sunday and Monday evenings and I can't wait for the blackberry deserts I only make once a year!  I'm planning on using up some chicken breasts and drumsticks that are in the freezer instead of a whole chicken, so if you have a recommendation for a good spicy drumstick recipe shoot it my way.  My husband loves hot and spicy food and this is a good opportunity for me to make him something (while the rest of us can eat more temperately flavored chicken breasts).

Monday, September 22, 2014

Schoolish: So Far






So for the heck of it I thought I'd try to keep up with our "Schoolish" home education.  We're about to go into our first "break" or a catch up week.  So far it's been very low key and just what we need - just a little structure, but not a lot of stress.  We've accomplished a surprising amount in just a little structured reading on my days off and playtime after work.  Definitely proving that children do not need hours of "schools" to make large strides in our home.

I really feel strongly about Montessori-esque principles at this age.  Namely in setting up and providing materials and then "following the child" - letting their interests and their own pac lead the way.  There are days where we BOB books on end (past what I have out for the week) and we go days without look at them.  Watching him doing puzzles over and over and indulging his first interest in anything related to writing.  After the last year of hating anything having to do with writing or drawing, he's quite the enthusiast this week.

I also feel glad for previous knowledge from Charlotte Mason about quality reading materials - I could probably do a stand alone post about our books.

For now this is what's working - just some accessible materials, lots of books, asking lots of questions as we read and very little structured activities (have I mentioned I'm not actually a fan of doing five billion craft projects a week?  I like making art with or without my kid, but draw the line).

If you need a refresher about the materials we're providing at home take a look at the first School-ish post.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Left Handed

Just incase anyone didn't see this silliness on FB last night - too cute not to share around.  (You'll have to click on the picture to read the dialogue).



For those who don't get the reference:


 
 
Happy Friday Everyone!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Crafting Season





Michaelmas is just a few weeks away.  It's become the kick off of a long celebratory season for me stretching from September through Epiphany.  I've got a few more projects to do before our feast day, but they're all exciting none the less.

I pulled out last years Michaelmas Knights and was immediately requested to make a Princess.  It has been lamented that these knights do not have any swords; another item goes on the to do list.  Last year the knights didn't get played with much, but this year H is showing a renewed interest in them as his imagination in stretching.  I love this age.

Idea and Pattern for Knight Rope Dolls from Here (Princess my own design).
Rope Dolls from Here.
Wooden Trees from Here.

Shared at Frontier Dreams Craft On.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Cold Days, Good Books, Warm Knits

Whenever the seasons start to change I always have a deep desire to revisit Jane Eyre.  One day I'll have to write out all my thoughts about her and Mr. Rochester, and there is so much to love, but for now I've been enjoying my beautiful hardback copy of the story and the movies on repeat.

If I can be honest about the movies - if I could have cinematography and music from the Gainsborough, the script from the Masterpeice Theatre version and the actors from the most recent I'd be in heaven.  But I enjoy them all in the end.

The change in the weather always brings out the knitting supplies and I've been knitting furiously over the last few weeks.  Cowls and fingerless gloves are my go to, but I have plans for socks and maybe a sweater before the season is done.

When looking for new patterns I love finding pieces inspired by literature and I shouldn't have been surprised at the number of Jane Eyre inspired knits out there (some of these are directly inspired, and some just inspired me).  For your fibre-enthusiast pleasure, I've rounded up my favorite Eyre inspired creations.
{I am not the creator of any of these patterns, pictures or creations.  Please support independent designers and purchase their wonderful patterns!}












Plain Jhaynes

Bronte Mitts

Now who's with me for a quick run to the yarn store and a Netflix movie marathon?

Saturday, September 13, 2014

The Morning After





Last night we stepped out of our comfort zone, or at least I did, and opened up our home to some friends.  Our house was filled with the smells of good food and the sounds of laughter.

I'm so glad we did this and look forward to making it a more regular occurrence in our home.

Now for a lazy Saturday in our pajamas... ignoring those dishes.





Thursday, September 11, 2014

Everything I Needed to Know... I Learned From Cimorene

One day a princess, fed up with dancing lessons, embroidery and marriage talk, decided that something had to change.  She packed up her best crown and five handkerchiefs, followed a frogs instructions and volunteered to be a Dragon's princess.

That just wasn't done.  It wasn't proper.

I was hooked.

"Dealing with Dragons " is one of those books that just sticks with you as a child.  Oh, it's no great epic tome, but it remains to this day one of the dearest books for my childhood.

I read it at least once a year and in the early days of my marriage even spent nights reading it aloud with my husband, excited to share a favorite series with him.

I included it last year in my "Great Girls Your Daughter Should Know" post and it's been one of my top sellers on Amazon (thank you!).


1.  Wizards are not to be trusted.

2.  Always be practical in an Enchanted Forest

3.  A little soapy water with lemon solves a lot of life's problems.

4.  This is the ultimate doormat.
Family take note.... Christmas 2014... just sayin'

5.  Chief Cook and Librarian is a perfectly respectable goal in life.

6.  Magic Carpets are fickle things.

7.  The "Right Honorable Wicked Stepmothers' Traveling, Drinking and Debating Society"* is an awfully good inspiration for any group of friends you want to get together.  
*Men's Auxiliary included.

8.  When in doubt make large batches of chocolate mouse.

9.  Sometimes the most unlikely of people make the best friends.

10.  Fencing, embroidery, cooking, Latin, economics, dancing .... 
you define what is right and proper for you to do.

Have you read the The Enchanted Forest Chronicles ? If so what is your favorite lesson?

What was the most important thing you learned from your favorite book as a child?

(I think Cimorene would have appreciated the natural cleaning ebooks)
 *this post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Molly Makes Do.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Good Enough to Eat: Children's Books About Good Food and a GIVEAWAY!




As I mentioned in Monday's post taking a Montessori approach to good nutrition with your kids involves a lot of participation and sometimes that participation is hard to drum up.

A good book is always a good source of inspiration in my family and it's a great book that inspires you to DO.  These are my favorite, fiction and non-fiction books, to inspire an interest in food.

"On a cold, snowy day, a young girl and her mother shop to buy ingredients for vegetable soup. At home, they work together—step by step—to prepare the meal. While the soup is cooking, they spend the time playing games and reading. Before long, Daddy's home and the family sits down to enjoy a home made dinner. This book celebrates the importance of making a nutritious meal and sharing in the process."

"While teaching upper- and lowercase letters to preschoolers, Ehlert introduces fruits and vegetables from around the world."

 
"Together, a father and child share the joys of planting, watering, and watching seeds grow. And once their harvest of tomatoes, potatoes, cabbage, and corn is ready, they'll cook it up into the best soup ever!"


"Good Enough to Eat is one of a kind: the only guide to kids' nutrition written especially for kids. A practical, hands-on tool for families who want to eat a healthy diet, this book explains nutrition from carrots to cookies."



"Gregory isn't like most goats. Instead of indulging in delicacies like old shoes, boxes, and bottle caps, he prefers to eat fruits, vegetables, eggs, and fish. Mother Goat and Father Goat are disgusted, and after several attempts to get Gregory to eat like a proper goat, they finally take him to see Dr. Ram. But when Gregory finally develops a taste for flat tires and broken violins, he's not just eating like a goat---he's eating like a pig! Will Gregory be able to find a healthy balance before he eats everything in the house?"



The "Everybody..." series is fantastic - it's a little lengthy in text so it's good for older kids.  It gives the reader a glimpse into the many ways rice, bread, soup and noodles are prepared all around the world.  Complete with tempting recipes to try!



As an incentive I'm offering a giveaway from my Usborne Store:


"Young children need a healthy diet for their bodies and brains to develop properly and to give them the best chance of a long and healthy life. This easy-to-use guide is filled with nutritional information, recipe ideas, tips, techniques and tactics for how to get children to eat well from an early age." 

There are three ways to be entered into this drawing:
  1. Purchase the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle.
  2. Make a purchase through my Usborne Store
  3. Sign up to host a Facebook Party.
You have from now until Tuesday September 15th at midnight to enter!

This promotion is now over =)

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