What to do, What to do?

Next week the grandchildren are taking over the “family ranch” in Leoti, KS. This ranch has been in my husband’s family for 4 generations (including the grandkids). I told MiMi (grandma who lives the out there full time now) that I would be the back up adult for a few days. 6 kids to one adult is a little much, especial with 2 still in diapers. I would run for the pasture myself after a couple of hours, if not sooner!

So I was browsing TONS of blogs, okay maybe not 2000 plus, however; it was probably 10+. I was so inspired by Handmade Charlotte, You Are My Fave, Say Yes to Hoboken, Paint Me Plaid, Bloomize, Ambrosia Creative (many of the posts were linked through a couple of the blogs), etc.

I have come up four activities I am sure the older kids will do. The younger ones – okay let’s be honest, my son needs to be included with the younger ones despite turning five last week, will only be interested in the activities for about 3 minutes each. I think the older girls will sit for a bit.

Here is my list with links to give credit where credit is due: I *heart* Handmade Charlotte right now!

DIY Printable Sewing Cards – Handmade Charlotte

Photo from Handmade Charlotte – not my own

Print + Paint with Handmade Charlotte – Paint me Plaid via Handmade Charlotte

Photo from Handmade Charlotte – not my own.

Painting Pillows – These are fabric dolls – on madebyjoel seen on Handmade Charlotte

I am calling mine painted pillows because I will make 12″ square pillows out of painters canvas for the kids to paint on. I plan to use my Mini Cricut to cut out stencils such as animals, simple shapes and abstract patterns on freezer paper.

Photo from madebyjoel – not my own

Paint Chip Animals – Handmade Charlotte – a great and inexpensive idea!

Paint Chip Animals – not my own photo – from handmade charlotte

Another activity for just incase purposes – DIY Pinwheel Necklace by MerMag as a guest post on Handmade Charlotte

DIY Pinwheel Necklaces – MerMag for Handmade Charlotte – not my own

I think these activities should keep everyone busy for a while. This and the new “pool” (actually one of the circular “tubs” they put out in pastures to get water to the cattle) that is about 2′ deep and the new life size playhouse the grandparents got the kids. It should be a great way to end the summer break and be with family before everyone gets busy with school.

I will take photos of the projects to see how the kids responded. Wish us luck!

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Laundry Time – 4 year old style

Last weekend, my son was very adamant that he do his own laundry. I said “okay” and was fairly impressed that he wanted to do it. He called for help a couple of times, yet I was not helping him the way he wanted. So I backed off and let him do his own thing.

Here is his process:

This is how I wanted it to be sorted.

Piles won't do, it has to be stacked NICELY!

He had to pour the soap, not me, so he poured the soap in, even though I measured it.

Looks like the right place to pour it.

Don't forget to rinse the soap cup

Now we can finally put the clothes in there. This was  a process as well.

One....... at a time

still....one at a time

Make sure they get in the washer!

still taking it one at a time

Pile is getting smaller

Yep, it's in there

Finally.... we are done

Maybe I should take more time for my laundry to be sure it is sorted just right! Always learning something new and never cease to be amazed by my little guy and his quirky ways!

Humble Beginnings

So this year I really pushed my DH to build me a raised garden bed. I am really excited to see how much will survive.

Mushroom compost

Mushroom compost!

So we went with mushroom compost for the first season. I read it is not a good idea to use animal manure the first 6 months. I will add the stinky stuff in the fall to prep for next year. I wonder how many neighbors will say “what is that smell!” I know I do when I smell manure.

Is this enough soil?

is this enough soil?

So I am a big fan of MiracleGro. Other soils get all hard and turn to cement, so I am hoping this will stay loose enough to help the water get to the roots and not become so compacted.

Soon to be peas!

Soon to be peas! Yay!

Peppa - peppers

Soon to be peppers!

Grow baby grow!

Grow baby grow! I think this is lettuce in the making. They all look the same in the beginning!

Broccoli baby

Broccoli baby!

Popeye would be happy to see this Spinach growing!

Popeye would be proud to see this spinach growing!

The start of something ... lettuce

the start of more lettuce... I think!

AN UPDATE since planting the garden the end of March. We had SNOW!!!!! Of course, right after I planted the garden – MURPHY’S LAW right? Many of the plants didn’t make it and kept shriveling. I even covered it up to protect it. So I dug up many of them, I am an impatient gardener! I planted more seeds and then recently went to the garden section at Lowes and purchased broccoli and new tomato plants. I reused the containers to plant more peppers, leaf lettuce, bibb lettuce, and spinach. I have high hopes for this otherwise, I owe DH the money he spent to help me put it together. YIKES! Here’s to grey thumbs hoping to turn more green as the season progresses (I don’t have a black thumb, just grey)

Also as we were getting the garden ready, we had a little accident:

I just fell out of the tree! I can't stop crying!

I am starting to feel better. I am trying to be "strong and tough" "boy-like" - Boys can cry - it's okay

The scene of the CRIME! (He fell facing the other way on his belly) Poor guy! He is definitely more cautious climbing the tree lately.

So, You Think You Can Sew?

I am so excited!

Monday I took an introductory sewing class with my sister-in-law at one of my most favorite stores here in Denver, FABRIC BLISS! We made the cutest tote bags!

Little tote bags we made in class. Yah to my sister-in-law, this was her FIRST sewing project! Photo from Fabric Bliss Denver, Facebook page.

I LOVED, LOVED the sewing machines we used that I got one the next day. I am anxiously waiting for Amazon to ship it out!

This will be my latest baby, next to my KitchenAide mixer (from Costco at $149!)

from Amazon.com the Brother CS 6000i

This machine comes with EVERYTHING! I am so excited for it. No more 1969 Singer Touch and Sew Zig Zag machine. That heavy sucker is going back to my mom.

I will be computerized! So exciting. Check it out here.

Terrarium Inspiration

I was looking around on Teal and Lime a while back and really liked her terrariums. So that evening I went and bought all the materials I would need to make my own. (please click on the “terrarium” link, above, to go to the original tutorial and pin or look at the original photos/tutorial referenced in this blog)

I found two great glass vases/candle holders from HomeGoods (love that store) for $10 and $8.

At Lowes I picked up the following:

  • White Marble Rocks – 5#
  • Potting Soil – Miracle Grow, Moisture Control
  • Moss
  • Various plants

The layering is very simple:

Bottom layers of Terrarium

  1. White Rocks
  2. Layer of moss – to keep the soil from falling through to the bottom
  3. Layer of Soil, enough to plant the plant in and establish its roots
  4. Moss to help hold in moisture

We did not use activated charcoal because the tops were open and air could circulate. I think the charcoal is more for closed terrariums

Lastly – Add your plants. We broke ours up to split between the two vases. I am showing you the smaller of the two.

Plant for thinner vase

Here are our two terrariums (that are STILL ALIVE!!! Woo Hoo!)

Larger terrarium

Smaller terrarium

Our plants are a little larger, the selection was minimal at Lowes when I did this. It is best to look for smaller plants or ask your local nursery for terrarium appropriate plants.

Teal and Lime inspiration:

Teal and Lime Terrarium Inspiration

Layering as shown on Teal and Lime