Wednesday, March 28, 2012

things you never thought you (or anyone) would say

Life with any toddler is a bit, well, crazy.  Life with my toddler is always crazy, and often hilarious.  That is, if I can stop and appreciate the humor of it all.  So in an attempt to do that (and not tear my hair out for having to tell him to stop doing something for the fiftieth time), I decided to start a list of things I've had to say to him - often on multiple occasions - that are phrases I doubt anyone ever thought they would say or hear.

Don't pour water on the vacuum.
No driving cars on the piano.
Don't wipe your chili on your toes.
Don't stand in your potty.
Please take a bite instead of licking the butter off your toast.
Don't head-butt the floor.  Or the cupboard.
We have to take your clothes off before you can get in the tub.
You can't drink goldfish crackers.
People don't wear leashes like dogs.
Don't put your feet in your cereal.
Don't put dirt in your ears.
You have yogurt in your eyebrow.  And your nose.

And here are just a few pictures of my boy being his crazy, messy, hilarious self.

(Yes, he's wearing the dog leash.  And yes, he did that all on his own.)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

starting seeds for your garden

When I was a little girl and read "The Secret Garden" for the first time, it had a very deep impact on me, and that question, "Might I have a bit of earth to plant a garden?" has been somewhat of a quest for my life.  I love plants - flowers, vegetables, trees, fruits, everything.  Okay, maybe not weeds.  But even some of the weeds starting to pop up in my yard have cute little flowers on them!

Our very first blossom of the season - a crocus flower that I rescued from the snow yesterday

Needless to say, I absolutely LOVE spring!  It means I get to start working in my garden again, and the world turns green and beautiful again.  So even though there are still patches of snow in my yard right now, I'm getting ready.  Last week I started some seeds for some of the cool season vegetables that I can plant out in the garden probably next week.  I'm so excited!

So I wanted to share a super easy way to start some of your seeds inside to get them ready for the garden.

Plant them in plastic strawberry containers.

Make sure they're the ones that are a bitt taller - at least 3".  Just fill the bottom about 2/3 with a seed starting soil (not potting soil) and plant the seeds following the instructions on the package.  Since the bottom already has holes, the water drains easily.  The lid keeps a bit more moisture in to help the seeds germinate, and to keep prying little fingers out of the dirt.  Just set them somewhere where they get some indirect sunlight, make sure they stay moist, and wait for the magic!  

*Caution - don't keep them in too much direct sunlight (like in a window) because they'll heat up too much being indoors, and the seeds won't grow.

One other useful thing about starting your seeds in strawberry containers, is that if you use a bigger one, you can start several different types of seeds, and just write on the lid what you planted where!  This is my "salad" container - 5 different types of lettuce and some spinach.

This is also a fun, easy project for young kids to help you with, and to teach them about how plants grow and such.  They can so easily participate and watch as they sprout and grow.  My little guy loves to point at and "touch soft" the little seedlings.  (He also tries to grab handfuls of dirt sometimes, so I have to watch closely!)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

new finger puppets on their way

I've spent the afternoon designing and cutting out a whole bunch of little pattern pieces for a new finger puppet set I'm working on!  I'm really excited for it, and think it is going to turn out really cute.  But now my fingers hurt from cutting out all those tiny details (yep, I'm a big wuss.)

Any guesses what all these pieces make?  If you can guess what this finger puppet set will be, I'll send you a coupon for free shipping from my store!  Just leave me a comment and I'll be in touch if you get it right!

Oh, I guess I should make a deadline since I'll be listing these in my shop when I finish... You have until St Patrick's Day (this Saturday) to send in your guesses!

*Update: You can now check out the finished puppets here, or over in my shop!

exciting news!

We got to see baby #2 in an ultrasound last week, and found the exciting news - it's a boy!!  We're so excited (and maybe a little nervous...) for Jack to have a little partner in crime.  He's excited too!

We had a hard time getting him to hold still and not throw the balloons (he thinks they're balls, and all balls must be thrown) but we got a couple pretty good ones!

And since my younger sister is currently serving a mission for our church and we have pretty limited communication with her, I decided to send her this package full of all sorts of blue stuff, and the pictures above, and some photo copies of ultrasound pictures, to share the good news!

Blue candy, and stars, and a lei, and balloons, and pictures

So now I have to get started on the adorable baby dinosaur blanket that I'm making for our new little boy.

Friday, March 2, 2012

potty training survival kit

We've been prepping for potty training for a few weeks now - bought a potty, bought some underwear (Buzz Lightyear - his favorite!!), had Jack practice sitting on the potty, talking about it a lot to get Jack excited, reading lots of articles and blogs about potty training.

So when Daddy had a day home from work this week, we decided we should go for it!  But we had a few more things we needed to get before we began.  So Jack and I made a little trip to the dollar store to pick up the rest of the essentials that would comprise our "Potty Training Survival Kit."

Based on my now vast experience (2 days can sure seem vast!) here are some things you might want for your own potty training survival kit:
  • a potty seat or training seat 
  • underwear 
  • cheap plastic table cloths to cover carpet
  • juice boxes
  • books, toys, movies, and/or other activities
  • stickers, new toys, and/or edible treats (we used marshmallows and chocolate chips)
  • paper towels, rags, or cloth diapers to clean up accidents
  • something to keep you occupied, but not distracted (I grabbed a few books to read)
  • PATIENCE!!!  

And thus fully armed with our "Potty Training Survival Kit" we began.

We decided to try the "bare bum" method, so we kept Jack to a fairly confined space (with carpets covered with the plastic tablecloths) to make it easier to monitor him and prevent accidents.  He stayed pretty happy with all the toys and things, and actually sat on his potty for decent stretches while reading books or watching movies.  We gave him some stickers for sitting on his potty like a big boy!

When he did start to go "pee-pee" we would put him on the potty and tell him to go there, but I think he just got confused and a little scared...

Day 2 went a bit better in that he only had 2 real accidents, but he also never actually went in the potty either.  He just held it until I put on a diaper for his nap or bed time.  So I suppose we've succeeded in teaching him not to pee on the floor, which would be great if we planned to just let him run naked all the time and didn't need him to use a toilet.

But since he just got so upset every time I put him on the potty when he started to go somewhere else, we decided to take a break from potty training today.  Maybe we'll try again tomorrow.  Maybe we'll wait a little longer.  He is still on the young side for potty training.  But in spite of this, I hold by my "potty training kit" and think the problem may be that he's just not quite sure yet what it is we want him to do on the potty.

*Update: We took a break from potty training for a little while, but came back to it a few months after this post, using the same "potty training kit" and method. And it worked! He was ready by then, and now he's about 90% there - very occasional accidents, and still wearing a diaper at night, but mostly using his big boy potty!