Saturday, February 12, 2011

Projects

Warning: This is a completely narcissistic post about me me me - and things I have made - interesting to me and a very limited number of other people. (I.e. my sister and mom. Maybe.)
I realized a while back that I haven't been creating anything for a long time. I spend so much time doing chores, fixing things around the house, and raising children that creativity takes a back-burner - except when it comes to creative threats that will make my children eat their vegetables and creative ways to say the same things over and over (and over and over and over and...) again. Which, in reality, I don't even get creative with that - just repetitive.
With that I decided to try to revive some of my creative energy and I have actually managed to get a few projects done. First, I have to share this, though. When I was younger, I had a vivid imagination, but I was not in the least creative when it came to making things with my hands. In fifth and sixth grade we had mandatory woodworking and sewing classes. I absolutely abhorred them.
Woodworking gave me splinters and the results of my labors were so pitiful even my mother couldn't pretend to like them for long. It took me all semester to make one trivet - and it was so crooked that the pots would teeter precariously to one side, although to my mother's credit she still used it for years.
The sewing class was dreadful. It included knitting as well and I was so bad at it that one of the other girls used to take pity on me and just do my work for me. (I did say I was a bookworm, right?!) Based on my past as a non-creater, I get really excited when I manage to create something--so with no further ado (since we've already had a lot of ado about not much at all...), here are my creations from the last few months:

I painted the kitchen, from beige (pretty much the original color of the entire house) to a warm happy yellow. (For some reason I have no pictures of that.) Then I changed the ratty old knobs on the interior window shutters in the kitchen. Amazing what a difference it makes!


The corner hutch in the dining room is now purple (and makes me want to repaint the rest of the room...):





I have been wanting a wreath for my front door for years, but I haven't been willing to pay full price when they first come out in the stores - and at the end of the season, the remaining wreaths have been broken or looking much worse for the wear - thus no wreath for me.
So last fall, I decided to check etsy to see if a handmade wreath was cheaper. They weren't - but I fell in love with one that had yarn and felt flowers. What I didn't fall in love with was the price. I was completely outraged that someone would charge such an exuberant amount for yarn and felt, so I stubbornly decided, I could do it myself. Which I did, at a fraction of the cost. Yay! However, after numerous hours spent winding yarn around a wreath, I now fully understand why they are so expensive on etsy. If I didn't have the satisfaction of the finished product (and all the money saved) I would need some serious monetary compensation to make up for yarn-winding brain numbness.
In any case, I made one for fall:


And then decided to make one for winter as well:


A baby hair band with flowers (another "there is no way I am paying that, I can make it myself-project"):



And finally I am working on an alphabet picture inspired by my sister-in-law (who found it on another blog from another blog from...you get the idea...I think it originally came from Design Mom, created by Destri Bufmack.)


In other news, I saw/ heard two things this week, that made me wonder. The first one was a commercial for a "teach your infant and toddler to read"-program. Seriously? Is that taking the achieve-much-and-achieve-early mentality a bit too far?! Even if it works, which I honestly doubt (and not because I am too lazy to teach my infants to read. I think.) why would an infant need to know how to read?! Why?!?
The second thing was a diet pill. For dogs. No, really. Come on people!! TAKE THE DOG FOR A RUN, for crying out loud. Bring the baby, too. All that reading can make you long for fresh air...

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Oh, the Weather Outside is Frightful...

In the past two days, we have had what the media dubbed "a monster storm." Normally, I don't pay much attention because the media has been known to hype up the current events for ratings (shocking, I know..) but this time it actually seemed like the real deal. (See here for more information.)
A little back story - In the past few weeks, our area has been slammed with snow storm after snow storm and because it's frigid between the storms, none of the snow is melting. The roads are getting more and more narrow as towns are running out of places to put the snow, and everyone seems to be praying that their roof will hold up to the layer of snow on it. With all this, news of an ice-storm had us all in fear of power-outages and roof-collapsings. (Hey, it's a word if you have been cooped up in your house for too long!)
Not that I was ever a "let's-go-frolic-in-the-snow"-kind of girl, but this is seriously the winter that could make me consider moving to the South. We have had seven (!) snow days in four weeks - not including early releases and delayed mornings.  All this and it's still only February 2nd. Seriously.

Snow picture spam for your entertainment:

                                                 Backyard swing set:





 I think there is a grill under there:

Our driveway (notice the height of the snow next to the minivan; that's pretty much the level on the entire lawn):


















 And some happy snow monkeys to end on a more cheerful note: