A Little This, A Little That (and a whole lotta birthday)

This week we celebrated my Mom’s birthday and Jeff’s Mom’s birthday. They are a day apart! There will be much more celebrating I’m sure this weekend as well for my SIL and her husband will be flying in to stay. Ellie and I had been working hard on some special pieces of art for both of them (sadly, I didn’t get a chance to photograph the piece I did for Nana).

ellie paints for gparents

Ellie is now telling me which color paint she wants and where she wants me to place the glob of paint. I love it that she already is directing so much of the art process.

rainbow art

rainbows haning

We’ve been playing a lot with Ellie’s wooden rainbow toy and while she was painting she pointed to her rainbow toy on the table. I’m thinking these works of art have a very rainbow quality to them, don’t you think? Since Ellie is enjoying painting so much these days we are thinking of getting her an easel some time soon. Any recommendations for one that will grow with her welcome!

my painting

My painting for my Mom. A spring wreath. Lot’s of pink with a handmade quilt tucked in the middle. I thought it would be a nice addition to her sewing room.

the product

I also got some Happy Mail this week!! Nothing makes you feel better than happy mail!
happy mail

After Cory announced her sale in her Etsy shop on her blog, I had to snatch up that butterfly dress I had my eyes on for weeks for Ellie. She is so speedy that the package arrived the very next day (and with an adorable bib to boot)! Thank you Cory!

I also received the most lovely of Thank you notes from a friend from up north. Not only does she send a Thank you card but chocolate for me, special tea and stickers for Ellie! Plus, she jazzes up her envelopes with meditations and quotes to pass on her joy and peaceful ways. Thank you Lizzie! You made my day!

Besides birthdays and happy mail, we had a bit of a tough evening the other night when Ellie got into what we think were the dry prickles of an asparagus fern. Her poor little bare feet were covered in prickles and a very late evening was spent picking them out one by one with tweezers. Not a very fun night. Not a very happy toddler and a very tired Mama and Dada. After a trip to the doctor however (to make sure the prickles or splinters were all out of her feet and not getting infected) and a couple soakings in the tub, she seems to be doing just fine. No more barefoot butterfly girls around here.

little fairy

Weekending!

A busy weekend
Sleepless nights (I blame the full moon and new teeth)
A stumble upon the St. Patrick’s Day Parade downtown while headed to the farmers market.
Dinner with Grandma and Grandpa.
Dinner with Nana and Papa.
Walks in the wagon and longer days.
Flowers galore!
New handmade dish drying mat (finally got to it)!
(Hot!) Spring Gardening days.
Homemade strawberry muffins
A beautiful sunday boiled corn-beef and cabbage dinner, Thank you to Nana and Papa!!! (Sadly, no photos. I was too busy trying to get a wildly excited toddler to eat her food and not throw her food, I’m telling you- full moon! ).
I head to bed tired but happy and hoping that tonight we get some rest.

How was your weekend?

gramma happies

parade 1

 

wow!

the tractors

dada and boo

 

red red engine

 

piiig

 

wagon ride

 

this cute kid

 

runnuculus

 

purple hues

 

purty

 

new dish drying mat

 

DSC_0336coffee and wine

 

wet clothes

 

seeds a plantin

 

mama and ellie plant

 

planting

 

seeds

 

emotions

 

strawberry muffins

 

char wants some

– Joining Amanda over at The Habit!

It Feels Like Spring

I know living in California, we don’t have the definitive seasons like elsewhere in the world, but I’ve learned to really notice the subtle differences in my environment  that seem to announce that spring is coming. It’s greener, there’s a crispness in the morning air, the flowers are brighter and already blooming. I start to get antsy in wanting to replace the heavy winter quilts with light colorful ones. I start decorating with more greens and yellows. And in any spare time I have, I start organizing and purging like mad. Oh how I love the coming of spring.

spring flowers

 

Daffodils bringing greens and yellow into the home.

oranges

 

Some of the last of the winter oranges from our tree.

corys quilt

 

ellie likes it

 

New quilts to cherish (made by this lovely lady, thank you Cory, as you can see we both LOOOVE our new quilt) plus a bumble-bee bib to brighten up  the home.

mushroom

 

Spring time fairy garden terrarium drawings… I can’t stop making them!

mushroom

Handmade mushroom’s on top of newly dusted off spring time runner (I love taking this runner out of its box)!

nature table

Getting Ellie’s nature table ready for spring!

getting the garden readyAnd maybe one of the most exciting things… getting the garden ready. Our new boxes built by Jeff and his Dad.

Oh spring, I’m so glad you are almost here!

 

 

 

 

 

An Afternoon in the Gardens

Jeff took the day off of work, so after nap time we decided to go somewhere we had never been before. We picked up Nana and Papa on our way and headed to the Santa Barbara Botanic Gardens. A lovely place for all of us to explore. Ellie enjoyed it very much, insisting on being barefoot and hiking down the rocky dirt paths ahead of us. This child loves the outdoors.

sb botanical gardens

panaramic

We were only there for maybe fifteen minutes before my camera battery ran out. Of course. So, half of these photos are iPhone photos. I was very bummed, because the beauty of this place made me itch for my regular camera. I was glad to have my iPhone though to at least document my silly girl enjoying nature.

poppies

more poppies

beautiful view

wildflowers

It had been socked in with fog all morning down by the beach, but by the time we made it up to the hills of Santa Barbara, it was a beautiful, sunny day. The gardens had a lovely main meadow full of poppies and other California wildflowers and a path that took you through a coastal redwood forest.

big rocks

hat?

what hat?

views

benches

It was like Disneyland for this little one. She wanted her shoes off so she could experience every sensation. There were rocks (and benches like this one) to climb and dirt paths to run along. When the trail got a little tricky she was not thrilled with Mama or Daddy when we tried to help her by carrying her. She wants to do it all by herself, all the time.

flowers

blues and purples

on the trail

neat stairs

look what I found

poppy

We will definitely be returning to the botanic gardens again. There was so much more we didn’t get to see before dinner and a long drive home came calling. A lovely afternoon in nature.

Weekending!

another beach day

 

a walk down the beach

 

here we go to find ducks

 

down the salt creek path

 

pretty flowers

 

wheres the ducks?

 

dadadada

 

exploring

 

little bird

 

marsh

 

foggy

 

antiques

 

seedlings in the sun

 

rice play with nana

 

water play

 

water table fun

 

fancy feet

 

teaching

 

the whole musical fam

 

laundry

 

chili

 

This Saturday we made our way back to the beach again with Nana and Papa and Auntie Lindsey. Ellie was in her element, scooping sand between her fingers and running along side of us down by the water. It was chilly be the time we made it down there but Ellie didn’t seem to mind in the least. We took a walk through the local marsh, hoping to spot some ducks and found pebbles, pretty flowers and interesting birds a long the way. Before heading back to Nana and Papa’s apartment, we did a little bit of antique-ing and shop browsing. Jeff found an old banjo record.

Sunday the weather was beautiful. The day started off rough when we attempted to eat out for breakfast and an 18 month old little person had other plans. But after a well needed nap, we enjoyed a beautiful day with the in-laws again, playing outside in the sensory tubs, taking a little bike ride (Ellie rode in the trailer we borrowed from a friend), dancing to some family banjo and guitar practice, folding linens and finishing the evening off with delicious homemade lentil chili.

How was your weekend?

– joining Amanda over at The Habit. 

Making + Listening: Valentine’s Edition

MAKING: There has been lots of making and listening around these parts. Now that Ellie is feeling better we’ve had some painting sessions…

paint away!

look at my hands

collecting

And some afternoon walks where we collected sticks for another Simple Things Notebook inspired nature craft. Ellie did the stick collecting, I did the hot glueing.

heart wreath

And the big project I’m working on is putting together something special for the blogger swap. After spending an evening visiting all of the blogs involved in the swap, I can tell you I am a little worried my contribution won’t match up. These bloggers are AMAZING at what they do! I started working on a set of hand-sewn coasters to begin with. I’m excited about the fabrics. A couple of them are from the Downton Abbey collection which I find just lovely. I hope my blogger swap partner will find them lovely too.

coasters for blog swap

LISTENING: Little Bird has been on repeat for many days now, but we have also managed to have some classical playing in the evenings with dinner. I had picked up a lovely french classical c.d. on my honeymoon in Paris. It used to reside in my classroom and was played often in the early mornings upon the children’s arrival. Now it’s come full circle. Playing in my own home for my own daughter to enjoy.

-joining Dawn for Making + Listening!

Weekending

homemade chicken soup

 

pig tea

 

sunshine toys

 

nana reads to ellie

 

walk to the beach

 

almost there

 

ellies favorite place

 

dadadada

 

sand

 

beauty

 

lakeside

 

tree in the sunset

 

sea lions

 

watching the seals

 

walking back

 

watching the train

 

sunset

 

beauty at sunset

 

We are very much on the upswing of this bug. Only the cough seems to be lingering now. We all stayed well hydrated this weekend and finished up Daddy’s homemade chicken soup. Nana and Papa spent most of the weekend with us. Papa and Daddy fixing up the car that my In-laws will  drive while they are in California. Ellie and Nana playing and reading and enjoying each others company. Mama catching up on laundry and dishes and cleaning. Sunday we felt Ellie was well enough to spend an afternoon down by the beach. She was overjoyed being outside again and not cooped up in the house. We then took a walk down to see the seals in the town my In-laws are staying. One seal had just given birth and there were several more nursing their little pups. It was really neat watching them. We got to watch the train go by as well. One of Ellie’s favorite things to do these days.We ended the night with Thai takeout and a nice drive home with a happy baby. A lovely, fun evening for all of us.

 

-joining Amanda at The Habit.