Saturday, November 22, 2008

a walk in the forest

during a trip to the mountains yesterday,
my little girl and i went for a walk in the forest together

we went to the end of the road

and these are some of the beautiful things we saw..........

Friday, November 21, 2008


kid's ornament swap 2008

we just got our list today for the swap and i am so excited to get started.

the theme is winter wonderland.

visions of deer, snowflakes, stars and trees are swimming

around in my head. i am still not sure what we will do.
any suggestions?
leave me a comment and i will randomly pick a winner,
to whom i will send a free ornament from our batch of ornaments.
i will close this contest one week from today and post
the winner as soon as she is chosen.
come on........who doesn't need an extra
ornament for their tree......and it's FREE!!!
it will be made with love from me to you.

it was one long week...........

and now it is over.
the indian village is finished, but this is definitely the star!

straight from the imagination of a nine year old girl.

i told her that i think she can just go ahead and quit school,
we'll set up a cottage industry business and she can make me rich!!!
the pilgrims have come to join in the fun

can you see the logs and the fire?

and then there is that baby in a little papoose
on the ground practically in the fire...

i hope that isn't any indication of how

she will take care of her own children someday!
here is the entire thanksgiving scene. i give it a 10!

there was this sweet picture

made by my girl just for me:

the viking notebook pages
finally had a place to go

there is a hint of order in the schoolroom,
we can see the floor!
all of the boxes (yes, they are cheap, cardboard banker boxes,
but for limited space reasons, this was the best thing i could come
up with for now). they are each labeled:
puzzles, paints, cassette tapes, scrapbook supplies, arts and crafts, wooden crafts, flowers, garlands, sequins, etc. etc.
the book shelves are arranged so that certain little fingers cannot get into the glue, tape, scissors and/or staples because there are people in this house, whose names i will not mention, but they like to use and abuse gluesticks, scotch tape and other necessary supplies. and i must say that there is nothing quite like being right in the middle of a project and finding out that all 35 glue sticks are somehow DRY.
i have often thought of making this room soooooo off limits, especially when i have been in there cleaning ALL BY MYSELF. i had an idea that it might work kind of like the library and they could "check" things out. and only, and i mean ONLY, upon PUTTING a project/materials/game AWAY, could they take something else out. but that never works for long. i'll feel bad, like how would i feel if someone stifled my creativity...........

here is a moment of still this morning in: the schoolroom
we didn't finish up the viking unit today like i wanted
as we had an unexpected "field trip" to the mountains.
more on that later.
this will be our final project for the vikings/celts
-illuminated manuscripts-
sort of like the one below and then we will be done!

some of the art is more pagan than others.

I wanted to stress the Christian aspect of it.

You can visit here and here for some ideas on Celtic Art and illuminated manuscripts.

we'll be moving onto the pilgrims next week.

i plan to take it easy and mostly do a lot of reading and baking.

but i'll post more on that tomorrow. goodnight.

still: friday morning

Yesterday morning, my husband was actually home, so he prompted me to go to a certain coffee shop and treat myself to a cup of whatever I wanted, which turned out to be
Peppermint Mocha Twist. However, most mornings I am not this fortunate. Usually I find myself experimenting with various concoctions based on rare visits to that certain coffee shop. My children even call our kitchen "mombucks". So in the event that you need a little help waking up, can't afford to go out and buy a pricey cup of coffee every morning and you love chocolate and coffee as much as I do here is a little recipe for you, with love, from "mombucks":
~Boil desired amount of water in a pan~Carefully pour into a pretty cup~Drop one square of Baker's Semi-Sweet baking chocolate squares into your pretty cup~Add desired amount (I use two tbsp.) of Nescafe instant coffee~Or you can just pour a cup of your favorite brew from your coffee maker~Stir until chocolate melts~Add one tsp. of vanilla, a pinch of cinnamon, 2 tbsp. of powdered sugar and a dash of milk~If you're looking for the peppermint twist, add a few crushed candy canes or melt a peppermint patty candy!
Now, sit down with your favorite book, mine is my Magnificat and enjoy!

ps. that cup, creamer and sugar bowl are one of the reasons i love thrift stores-where else can you find johnson brothers for $.50 ?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

photographic art

"A knowledge of photography is just as
important as that of the alphabet.
The illiterate of the future will be ignorant
of the use of the camera and pen alike." ~Laslo Moholy-Nagy, 1923
So reads one of the walls at the MOPA
which I photographed after asking for permission from one of the curators.

Last weekend I was treated, by my dear husband, to a rare trip to the "museums" in San Diego's Balboa Park. Now, if you know my husband at all, you can appreciate what a sacrifice and act of true love for me that it took for him to haul me, along with our 4 kids on an 87 mile trip (one way) to do something that seems more like a day for mom, but that really does benefit the whole family much more than a day at the dunes riding motorcycles does (which I decided against after I was told I could actually "choose" what I wanted to do). I know I probably used I too many times!

This trip actually left us a bit more cultured, informed, entertained and refreshed, whereas the alternative would have left us dirty, tired and possibly missing a limb or with a few broken know how dangerous those motorcycles can be!

So after patiently perusing the Air and Space Museum

AND the Automotive Museum, where I was asked to take picture upon picture of cars, motorcycles and airplanes

AND after various rides on the little train
AND the carosel

I finally made it to the Museum of Photographic Arts .

If you live in the area you can visit their website for a list of current exhibitions.

My daughter and I were mesmerized by the Nancy Newhall exhibit. Nancy's husband, Beaumont Newhall, was the curator of the Museum of Modern Art in New York and she substituted this role for him while he served in the military during World War II.

I thought it was so beautiful that he gave her a camera as a wedding gift, encouraging her to become the great photographer that she was meant to be. All of her photos were black and white, which personally, I love.

There was also a youth exhibition, called Writing With Light where students, through their own photos, interpreted literary works, both fiction and non-fiction as their means of expression. The result was "an exploration of the many connections between photography and literacy, and an understanding of the significance of viewing photography through writing."

I am really looking forward to using some of these ideas in a photography unit and letting my own kids work on their picture taking skills. I know that everyone has different opinions with regards to letting kids use the camera, personally, I don't usually let the littler ones use my camera too much. Although it is disappointing for them when the cameras that they have don't take pictures quite like "mom's camera", so we'll probably have to do a little investing on a better digital camera for them, but for now at least their interest is piqued as is mine!

Every one of those images I saw that day stirred something inside of me and I am so excited to capture as many of my very own "moments" as I possibly can.
I have joined a still group at flickr and so can you!
For now, here are a few of my own ideas of still........

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

around the house

I took out a few of our Thanksgiving things,
even though we won't be home for the actual holiday.

leaf garlands

A wooden sign I painted a few years ago

more pumpkins,
filled with jelly bean/corn favors
left over from our cousins party

Some Pilgrims

My cornucopia, which I found hidden
in a remote corner at a Ross store about 3 years ago.
I fill it with a few flowers from Michael's and it looks so pretty!

Indian noise-makers we made at
Family Day at the San Bernardino County Museum.

The kids are making

handmade cards with
stickers, cardstock, ribbon, a hole punch.

pipe cleaner turkeys:
all you need is a few colored pipe cleaners
and a little imagination!

Collages of the "food groups" they'd like to see
at our Thanksgiving feast!

Felted woodland creatures with a little help from Martha:

Teepees for their Indian Village

made from paper plates, construction paper,
paint and a few twigs from the yard.

Hope you're finding some time to
enjoy the simple things too!