Friday, September 24, 2010

Slightly Crafty

Some people say I'm crafty but I'm really only slightly crafty.  I love doing cool homemade projects that I can be proud of.  I love taking pictures of my kids and have occasionally taken pictures for other people, some I was confident and comfortable for and some a nervous wreck!  Probably because I don't know much of what I'm doing with my camera.  A dear friend GAVE me his amazing Nikon D70 and some neat stuff to go with it a few years ago and I'm not worthy of it's awesomeness.  I keep it on "auto" (wincing with embarrassment now).  I took a photography class in high school and remember nothing.  I have an eye for taking the pictures, just no clue how to do it in the best way.  Besides, it's more of a hobby that someday I'd love to pursue professionally, but for now my attention is devoted to my kids.
I also love editing my pictures!  Intelligent Man bought Photoshop Elements 8 for me for Christmas last year and I've loved using it - but again, I'm no professional.  I admit to you all right now that I've been cheating (wincing with embarrassment again).  There are these things called "actions" in the photo editing world, they are a series of editing steps that someone put all together so you can get a result with one (or a few) clicks and minor adjustments instead of spending copious amounts of time on each picture.  There are actions for making black and white photos, for making dreamy looking photos, and for making "the perfect portrait" just to name a few.  PSE8 is complex and I have not figured it out yet so I'm cheating with actions.  This will result in me being spoiled and always relying on them (wincing... again).
I had a short-lived interest in scrapbooking about 2 years ago.  I bought some really cute scrapbooking cardstock pages and other decorative pages and planned on making a scrapbook for each kid.  I got one page done for each of the girls about a year and a half ago.  I also bought two little scrapbook albums so the big girls and I could scrapbook their first Disney World vacation!  The albums, the pictures from the girls disposable cameras, and all their little memorabilia are still sitting on my desk, completely untouched.  We went to Disney in May of 2009 (commence wincing). 
Let's go even further back... 2004.  My sweet freakishly long-haired first born baby girl was born this year and I had it in me that I wanted to sew clothes for her.  I bought a pattern that had some pretty simple patterns for baby shirts, ruffled pants and bloomers, blankets, and hats.  Intelligent Man's wonderful grandmother (the gifted seamstress of the family) bought me a sewing machine and tried my hand at making her first Halloween costume (without a pattern... double wince). Dumbest. Idea. Ever.  What amateur seamstress can sew something without a pattern? Ugh.  My poor, poor 5 month old Prissy Pants wore a pretty lousy Tinker Bell costume for her first Halloween.  I still have it in her keepsake box.  The sewing machine rested peacefully in the closet, tucked nicely in its box for a few years after that (by now you know what I'm doing in these parentheses, right?).
However, after Funny Bones was born the sewing bug bit me again and I dug out my machine.  Since then (about a year and a half ago) I've managed to sew a wrap style baby carrier, a cart cover, 3 fairy tutu's (with matching hooded capes, head pieces, and wands), my own renaissance costume (even made the wings myself), a blanket and pillow for my cousins baby girl, a strange looking ragdoll, a tutu with a matching headband for a friend's 3rd b-day, another blanket with matching pillow for the same friend's baby brother, a nursing cover for the mommy, some cloth diapers, cute little shirts for my girls that originally started as dresses, more cloth diapers and cloth diaper covers that my friend loved and used on baby, a few cloth diaper covers for Funny Bones that she refused to wear, a nursing cover for myself, another cart cover for a generous friend, a few wet bags and another diaper cover for yet another friend, a "grow-with-me" dress/shirt, and some boutique style burp cloths.  Whew!  Success!  I found something crafty that I actually followed through on!!  WOOT! 
The Texas Renaissance Festival is upon us once again!  Last year I planned on making us a family of Pirates for this year... Arrrg!  So I'm counting on my slightly crafty self to pull through with only a few short weeks to get it together!  I may cheat on my pictures, I may never finish the girls scrapbook, and I may start and never finish a thousand other crafty things (like dressing up the boring plain white furniture in the girls rooms), but if I can manage to keep sewing things that I can be proud of, then I'm ok with being only slightly crafty!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Beach or Bust

It's finally here!  Today is the day we leave for the beach for 6 days!  Hooray!  It may not be Disney and it may not be a white sand/clear blue water beach, but hey, a vacation is a vacation, right?  I'm so ready to just chill and play and NOT CLEAN HOUSE!  =)  The girls are giddy, they've been asking every single day for the past 2 months if it was time to go.   

I got out all the clothes I planned on packing for all 4 kids and now I'm wondering if I have big enough bags!  Yikes!  It'll be like the van - we're bursting at the seams.  So much so that we're bringing both cars.  LOL  Hilarious isn't it?  =P  I'll have all the kids and maybe pillows in the van and Intelligent Man is bringing the car so we can bring our fabulous double stroller and all our bags.  We really need a bigger vehicle... maybe a 15 passenger van!  Well, no, that may not be such a good idea, I'd feel the need to fill it up (and that's a dangerous thought)!

See you all in 6 days!!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Aaaaaaand ACTION!

Here starts the beginning of a new adventure...blogging. I know, I know, it sounds exciting and a little dangerous! Can I conquer this quest? Only time will tell, my friends.
 So let's start with the who and why: we've all heard of 'Superwoman', she's amazing; strong, beautiful, and noble, she fights for justice and peace, she saves lives, etc, etc, etc... yada, yada, yada... blah, blah blah. (For a more detailed description of this "superwoman" read Proverbs 31.) A few overly nice friends have tried to bestow her title upon me, and while I would love to accept it - I'm not her. However, I am in fact, her stunt double! That's right, I'm known as 'Lady Multi-Tasker'! (Not quite as glamorous, is it?) While 'Superwoman' stands in the spotlight, soaking up the praises of her fans, I work silently and diligently in the background, rolling with the punches. I have to do the "dirty work" like; cleaning up messes, breaking up fights, and enforcing the law. Even worse, things like giving baths, kissing booboo's, and squeezing knowledge into little heads! When in the throes of these events I'm rarely patient, quite often make the wrong decision, and hardly ever without someone else's bodily fluid somewhere on me. However, my job does have perks: hugs, kisses, I love you's, and the most rewarding but very rare event of watching the fruits of my labor lived out positively through them. Those things make my job worth the bruises and sticky clothes!

So you're wondering about the "them" that I'm referring to? Well, let me introduce you! I am married to 'Super Intelligent Man' or known only to me as 'Sexy Intelligent Witty and Musically Inclined Man' (gasp - you're speechless, I know, close your mouth, wipe the drool, he's taken, so move on)! 'Super Intelligent Man' is never without his Sword of the Spirit, he is always on the watch for someone to share this knowledge with, so make sure you have your pen and paper ready to take notes! He will also charm you and simultaneously make you pee your pants with his wittiness (pack a change of underwear)!

Nearly 6 1/2 years ago 'Intelligent Man' and I decided to procreate (who wouldn't want little supers?). But somewhere, somehow, something went wrong and before we knew it we had 4 miniature villains! First came 'Madame Prissy Pants' who thinks and acts 10 years older than she really is. Prissy likes to be bossy and likes things just so, and if you don't follow her lead she will fall apart, her cries can be heard miles away and her tears will flood her surroundings in a matter of minutes. The trick is figuring out how to let her be just grown up enough without letting her think she's THE grown up.

Next came 'The Invisible Z Girl' who is ruled by her emotions. She will only be visible when she is darn well ready, otherwise she wants no attention whatsoever. If you breech that wall and try to get in without her permission, you've ruined your chances of reaching her forever! Cross her (in other words, correct her) or embarrass her and you'd better cover your ears, she can deafen every living thing within 10 miles, just a small shrill will shatter glass (only plastic cups are allowed here). To handle Z takes great care and understanding (also lots of reassurance and cuddling).

Then there was 'Little Ms. Funny Bones' whose very birth had us on the edge of our seats. Her shenanigans keep everyone on their toes and her silliness makes it near impossible to discipline her. (You try keeping a straight face when she's completely naked with Barbie stickers on her boobies and scaling the walls, croaking like a frog!) Her "jester" personality means laughter is inevitable in her presence. She can also cripple you with her pouty face and puppy eyes. Still being under 2 years old we haven't quite figured out how to defeat this one, but we're not giving up!

And last but definitely not least by any stretch of the imagination is 'Gargantuan Boy' whose sheer size will put you in shock. Although not green, he resembles 'The Incredible Hulk'! Only time will tell if he keeps his physique. There are no "tricks" with this one yet, he's still brand new and quite helpless, he's easily satisfied by shoving a boob in his mouth or talking baby talk to him.

Our villain offspring are not really "evil", but in the battle of the home, it's us against them. Who will be victorious? I know who is supposed to prevail, but doing so is only possible by the help of our leader 'The Almighty One', whose guidance, grace, and mercy we depend on. We are not "super" or "special" at all without Him, it is in fact He that holds the power! We are but vessels He uses to bring about His mighty plan! We are honored to be used by Him and that He chose us to fulfill this mission. And while I am nowhere near 'Superwoman' aka Proverbs 31 woman, with Him I can strive every day to be a better 'Lady Multi-Tasker'!