Number two is just like you. You are small but no longer a baby, you are strong willed but not yet a toddler.
This year has gone by too fast and im hoping for a much slower year with you by my side.
May we venture on many more ocean and water trips, may we learn the names of new species and have fun most of all.
There was a new found love this year when you discovered trains, but nothing compares to the growing love for the ocean life.
You were brave to start kindergarten and you have made new friends – who call your name when you enter the room -.
I am forbidden to wash your pajamas because you scream at the washer even though i try to explain its all for a better good and no one wants to sleep in a dirty pj. You still like one-hour-baths and dolphins have been replaced by whales then sharks.
You are kind and say “please” and “may i” with the most adorable voice.
You like to draw and take no interest in knowing how to write your name or make specific or perfect shapes, you are a little tornado and you should never drink coffee.
I have no idea what your favorite food is, because i think you have more than one favorite. You like to watch me cook and you always, always grab bits of soy stakes while im cooking them, we got that in common, me and you.
Two years have gone by and looking back, i cant believe how small you used to be. How round you used to be. How cute you still are.
May this next year be as much fun and more.
I love you.
Number two is just like you. You are small but no longer a baby, you are strong willed but not yet a toddler.
Its been a while since i last wrote.
There has been a lot going on for the past months and sadly, blogging keeps getting pushed towards the end of the list.
We should blog about things that make us smile, feelings we want to revisit and share, not sad memories and days we wish we could forget, erase, change.
I will not go into those days, there have been quite a few lately, changing me, forcing me to mature in a way i do not want to, still, the chaos is strong and the human mind too.
More powerful than anything is one’s heart.
It can be broken many times, over and over again and still pump, full of love, full of live.
This heart is tired, very tired but mostly its filled with love, all the yellow places are bright and if i really try, the gray areas, are just that, gray. And therefor not important at all.
Furniture has gone out, many things i wish i could have sent to some of you have gone to local people or just the local trash area. Walls have been painted, holes have been covered and even a new season arrived.
The sun makes it all better but this time, alongside with a great and wonderful announcement of a baby girl,- i am finally an aunt! – also came the announcement of a departure. Not of a person, not of a feeling but of a house.
To those who truly believe that home is where the heart is, you will know exactly how i feel, how i felt the second i realized the house was no longer going to be my place of comfort and joy and pretty picture taking.
I havent been living there, its a fact, but not because i didnt want to, everyday i wished i was there, smelling the wooden floors and overlooking the river, but i made another choice, yet another choice that broke my heart. It is done and i cannot bend back time, and all i can do now is mourn, my heart lived there. It needs the wooden floors to feel at home and right now, i miss that feeling.
A house isn’t a home on its own.
This here is a house, it will never be a home, it will never feel as a home even though it may look like one or even feel like one to other family members.
Ive loved the yellow room, maybe ill treat the kids with a new yellow room, just in time for spring, it would look great with the wooden bunkbed, i know.
I wish i had a print from this picture, i love Hanna’s pictures, they always make me smile and bring a happy feeling to my heart.
She also makes me want to stop the crap and stand up for stuff. I just don’t know why but i feel she’d throw a “snap out of it!” shake at me if we met.
Maybe i should shake myself.
I will. I know i will. One day. Not today.
Oh, yes im fine, Im having the time of my life…. sang the little english girl. Oh yeah. Im painting that room yellow.
Quick! Before Winter comes!
First, get a few thin branches, ones that are not completely dry and that are easy to bend. If you are lucky, you can even find an almost perfect round one, like i did. Score!
If you can’t find a round one, then gather some thin ones and join them with yarn (or whatever you like best) until you have a round/oval shape.
Tie 4 strings of yarn on four opposite sides (this will help it stand still when you add new items) and hang from the ceiling, its a lot easier if you proceed from now on with the mobil already hung. Its easier if you hang it at a nice height i.e. where you can reach it without much hassle, you do wanna add and remove items fairly easy don’t you? 😉
Start hanging your goodies. As soon as you hang something, specially if its heavy like this here, the mobil will drop to that side. Fear not, just move it around until you find the perfect balance. The four strings will do this so its good to follow instructions, clearly. The first mobil i made was not a round one and i always have a hard time adding new finds.
Add leaves, acorns, chestnuts and whatever you find, the more the merrier, just keep them apart, they will twirl when someone enters the room.
Don’t be afraid to bring home things that are still attached to their branches. Provided that its already on the floor, these will also make for extra decor. We got these from the trees that were cut down, remember those? yeah ill be mentioning that a lot.
If possible, intertwine without using yarn/thread, or use just a small amount to keep it natural.
Remember that you can keep adding new finds. By the time season changes, you can take some leaves out and replace them.
I’ll be keeping the chestnuts, they give it a nice nature look without looking too Autumny.
Et voilá. Your Season/Autumn mobil is done.
The handkerchief doll. Not only its an easy craft, its also a part of history.
During the Civil War, dolls were made from handkerchiefs for little girls. These “handkerchief dolls” were carried to church and did not make noise if they were dropped. Some mothers would put sugar cubes or candy in the head of the handkerchief doll for a youngster to suck on to keep the child quiet during the long church service. Smart Mamas.
I made this one last night and it took me about 20 to 30 minutes, if that much to get it done, i did the face a la Waldorf but it looks just as cute as a simple round head. I’ve been wanting to talk about a special project i have going on, but its still under appreciation so i must wait until i get the word out.
Last night i went back to the site where they were cutting down trees in the afternoon, to my surprise there it waited, my stump, alongside with its brothers and sisters, i only brought one home and lucky for me, i took the baby stroller alongside in my late night trip to the stump rescue. Strollers sans bebe of course. You ever wondered how heavy a tree stump is? Freaking heavy if i may use that word. Really heavy. But worth it. Now as for the bug factor, the scary bit about bringing stumps indoors is just that, there will be bugs, and as much as i wanted to keep it natural (i felt like using au naturel here but enough with the french) there’s no way im gonna sleep ok thinking about the bugs. Playing. In the playroom. With the children.
So i found some info online on how to finish the stump and i can’t wait till its inside and we can play with it. On it. Around it.
And last but not least, a new shelve for the kitchen. The other kitchen.
The shelve was made from a board i found at the beach, im sure i have a pic of it somewhere, and it was on the Nature shelve until i looked at it and realized it had the perfect size for a cup shelve.
I now need a new one for pots and other cute things that need display.
The children stayed home today so i won’t be making the underskirt tut, if i did, i’d just be asking for trouble, they love to hang around me and play with fabric and steal my camera and, well… you get the point.
BUT there will be some mobil action…
There’s been a new activity around here. Wake up early.
Im trying to get them ready for their early routine starting January (they have to be in kindergarten at 9) and i must say, its been hard but not that bad. Its true, we sleep late, which is a shame because we miss much of the morning hours but if i get up and open the blinds theres not much fuss, i must admit, im proud of the little nuggets.
Today we woke up early but still took us ONE hour to get everyone dressed and out of the house. Wait, i should erase that and just say, we woke up earlier than usual and went for a walk. A nice early autumn walk.
On our way to the market, we saw some trees on the ground, theres been a lot of that going on lately, piles of branches, and some trees disappearing overnight. Today we witnessed it first hand. Lilo saw a complete tree chopped to pieces and said “We shouldn’t cut down trees should we mum?” I really didn’t know what to say, so i ended up with the usual “No, we shouldn’t but maybe these were ill so thats why they were cut.” I don’t know the reason why they’re taking down trees and i didn’t want to go environmental-crazy on her little head, so i just went with the safe answer. And also because i looked at it, and even though it broke my heart, it also made me want to bring a piece home. Because thats who i am. I may get back there at night and if the stumps are still there (which i doubt) ill bring one back.
We had our “egg basket” with us so we gathered a couple more brown leaves and “hedgehogs” as she calls them, so i’ll build another mobile over the weekend and since im in a tutorial mood, why not make one of that as well?
I picked a branch that was still soft and a bit round so that will be perfect for the top of the mobile, the last one we made was a bit… stiff, and ive been wanting to make a round one ever since i saw this one here.
At the market, i was amazed by how cheap fruit and vegetables were, we bought a coconut for 57 cents, just for the touch of it. We ended up buying lettuce to plant, oranges, a cake, the coconut and some other goodies.
The market is the closest to buy-local we’ll ever get. We live in the city and apart from what we are trying to grow, the groceries provide for what we need, as far as everyday fruit and vegetables go. But the market was a whole different experience, the people are friendly, the smell is a mixture of everything that is sold, and Lilo enjoys more of her picture taking. With some locals even posing for her.
Having all that fish for sale there is also a way to learn about its species and see close at hand what they look like. Like the sword fish there.
Have a wonderful weekend everyone, and do drop by tomorrow for some ruffled skirt action.
Homeschool. Unschool. School.
All three choices are valid, some are even legal, and as a parent, its your choice, your decision, it’s up to you to decide what is best for the wee ones you know better than anyone else.
So far, the children have been in a home/unschool mode, we teach what they ask about and encourage discovery. For a while it scared and haunted me that i would have to explain to both families that these children were to be homeschooled, a choice that felt natural and correct, given the choices id seen, as far as kindergartens go, we have a system of “drop them here today and pay.”. And that i wasn’t going to accept, not when it comes to these two wonderful and very special ones.
I wandered off, doing my thing, my learning of life, and bumped into Waldorf education, it seemed that it focused way to much on religion and i, still on the i-wish-unschooling-was-legal mode, dismissed it without giving it a second chance. But there it waited, in the back of my mind, quiet.
Naturally and without effort, mother Nature made sure to step into my daily life. Having kids will do that to some mothers, awake a calling, give an excuse, shake things around. Being a city girl, i was amused to play in the nature and had fun collecting rocks and sticks and having them lay perfectly still at a table.
A nature table emerged, without me ever knowing what a nature table was.
With a baby in the house i had to pick a safe place so it became the nature shelve before it could evolve into the Nature table.
When your Heart is in the Country
Apparently, mine was.
From there on, crafts including nature finds were at the top of the list, me taking a while until getting things done, because, as life is, not all is a fairy tale with many hours and i have other things to do, things i do not find important but that must be done.
We made a mobile, collages and sticks became arrows, canes and all sorts of things imagination called for.
It was time for that W word to come back. In the shape of dolls. I found a book, based on the cover, and it had great pictures and the dolls, even though simple in their complexion, looked more alive than ever. And most important, they looked natural, even doll-like.
It burst in, the pictures, the history, the feeling, all came crashing down, nurturing me and making me know, there is a time for everything and everything will make sense.
I had been, in fact, a good mother. It had led me here. And the ones who would benefit would be my children. First thing, to study, to do research, to find out what was the big deal around religion and why religion was in fact the first thing mentioned alongside with Waldorf.
The more i read, the more i realized that, in reality, children would have zero clue who Steiner was and religion was a thing of grownups. Waldorf education was about something more other than religion.
The more i read, the more strengthen i got to make changes, to apply changes. To start making room for the future and let go of the past.
For this, my friends, was not only a discovery of a better education, was a change on the inside, a self discovery path for myself and for that, i treasure that word and hold it dear to my heart, even though it has many meanings.
Wikipedia explains it better here.
I found two kindergartens in our town. Made arrangements and we woke up early (real early) and went for a visit. I was more excited than everyone else. She was too, i know, we talked about “school” all day yesterday and it was becoming clear by the day that she was intrigued by what went on in schools.
[bare in mind, i always said id homeschool both of them until they asked to go to school]
The arriving was good. She took off her jacket and wanted to be barefoot, like all the other children but couldn’t, not today, this was a visit. He, the wee one was, i think, amazed that there were so many little people in one space alone. The environment was calm and peaceful and true to the Education standards, wooden toys, zero clutter and just a handful of children. And a grownup that sang.
We then moved out to visit the room upstairs were the smallest of our family would play.
She was to be left alone, with her future friends, our decision. His room was just as peaceful, with areas of play, with toys and objects that ive learned to love and that knew, would be there for play.
We even met the smallest of the smallest little people and they were thrilled to see us. Happy faces is always something you wish to see.
One hour later our visit was over, handshake here and there, goodbyes and thank yous.
She was sad we had to go, she wanted to go back and play with the other children. There was a promise that we would, right after Christmas. I wonder what that means for a three year old. Does that feel like saying it’ll be fours years from now?
We have to go back to officially enroll both of them, since we were waiting on an opening for the wee one. It will be official.
They are in for a better learning, a better life.
I myself, have big plans. For once, im standing first in line. And there is a smile coming up.