Thursday, October 31, 2013

Drawing Development

Yo yo!

So today I'd like to share with you a recent trend in Ella's art:


Usually, she draws people's faces straight on, but as you can see...we have a profile!
And she's been dabbling with pastels these days too.

In general, art is on her mind and we've been pouring over my Alphonse Mucha book quite a bit together.
She'd also been hoping to take a pottery class, offered through The Art Center, but unfortunately it was cancelled. ;_;
Oh, well -- there will be more chances for that in good time. :)

That is all for now.
Are there any updates in the field of art/drawing in your homes?
Do share!

Until next time, take care and Happy Drawing Development!

Monday, October 28, 2013

A Great Weekend!

Hey again everybody!

Sorry for the absence there -- it was a busy and fun weekend, so I figured I'd get back to you after it was all over.
So here I am and here are the updates:

After a little work outside the home (always a joy!) Dash and I left the kiddos in the care of the amazing Jesse again and went to a concert!!

I love youuuuuuu!!

Rufus Wainwright played at the Shedd Institute in Eugue and it was a spectacular performance. Truth be told, we were a little late and missed the opening act which was his sister Martha, who has an incredible voice!! But Rufus' gorgeous voice and piano-playing made up for all of that :)

Are you familiar with Rufus Wainwright's work? He did the cover of Leanord Cohen's "Hallelujah" for the end of "Shrek". I think that is how most people know about him. I was first exposed to him through an anime music video. Heh heh heh. I don't even recall which one, just one that was shown at an anime convention back in the day...

Aaaanyway, so it's been just about a decade since I fell in love with him and I've seen him three times so far. At the Wiltern, the Hollywood Bowl, and now the Shedd Institute. :)
And all three times have been with Dash! Hurray!!

After the concert, we stopped by a family restaurant for some coffee and dessert, and had a great time. I was feeling really goofy and at the same time full of incredibly good ideas, and then promptly crashed out at home after seeing Jesse off. So it was a somewhat short (but intense!) date :D

Saturday was the epitome of a lazy day. I had some work to do, so Dash took the kids to the farmers' market and when they got back, William was good and ready for a nap...and so was I! So we crashed out on the couch, and woke up a mere 30 minutes before our dinner guests were due: the Hokazonos!!
Yes, we finally got back together with our long lost dear friends, Kae, Seishirou, Douzen, and Motohira. Going from one kid to two can do that to you!! Dash made many a yummy pizza and the Hokazonos brought a delicious daikon-persimmon salad + ocha muffins. 美味しい!!
It was so great catching up with them, getting to hold the precious little Motohira, and watching as Ella Rose and Douzen flipped out all over the place having a great rambunctious time. Gosh it felt good speaking Japanese again after so long! Besides tutoring it, and reading Japanese books to the kids, I really don't get to speak it that much! So that felt nice :)
Oh, and my period showed up! Phew and yay!! :D I've never been a very regular girl, but I thought two kids and an IUD would do at least something... Guess not!

The first half of the day was taken up by church, which I may have mentioned we are back into going to, which was nice because I got to chat with these really nice gals in the nursery during the service and then got to help with the children's choir practice afterward. I am so proud of Ella's ability to remember the words to songs so quickly and even carry the correct melody. :)))
After church, we did some outdoor work -- raking and prepping the winter garden -- and then spent the rest of the afternoon at a preschool friend's house! January Jewel had us over for yummy apple cider, lots of imaginary play, and even some homemade magnetic letters and numbers that we got to take home! Score!!

We then had a late afternoon surprise visitor, and I was feeling so not in the mood to cook that we went out for mexican! Hurray!

And there you have it.
Our very great weekend. :D
I think this is gonna be a great week, too, and I hope you all had Great Weekends and great everything!!!!!!!

Take care!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Instant Upgrades!!

Hi all!

What an incredible day today was. least the second half. :)
It feels like both kids suddenly made these great leaps ahead in terms of...I guess "progress" is the word.
Lemme explain/show:

Firstly, in terms of our bicycling situation.
Ever since we got Ella Rose's tagalong about a month ago, it changed the way we get around most places, and especially to/from school:

Ella Rose is always nice and bundled up for our commutes :)

On her tagalong, Ella Rose isn't as much dead weight as before, and can actually propel me forward a bit if she really pedals in earnest. Yay!! It is really making her stronger, I feel, and she loves the freedom it grants her :)

But just today, Ella Rose wanted to accompany me to a friend's house on an errand, on her good old two-wheel bike...and add an attachment to it:

Such a proud big sis, with a somewhat bewildered William in the trailer

Indeed, we attached the trailer to her bike and she toted William the entire way there and half of the way back!!
She loved feeling so responsible for her little brother and I can't believe she's only 4 1/2 and was able to pull him so far for so long!! Watch out, Proud Mama here!! :D

Here's a little video of them in action:

So as if that wasn't awesome enough, back at home, Ella said she wanted to accompany Dada to the grocery store and pull the groceries in the trailer behind her...and before she left, I was able to finally teach her how to tie her shoes!!
It only took literally 5 or so minutes, because I opted to teach her using the "two loops" method. Here is a little video of Ella tying her one shoe:

I'm not gonna lie, teaching her was fast, but her actually tying the shoe takes a little while.
Granted, she's only been able to do it as of this one evening :)
I have the feeling she will get good and fast at it by the time the weekend is through, which is good because then she can use her skills at school to tie and untie her own shoes, saving Miss Christine a lot of work! :)

The icing on the cake, was just before dinner and it involved William.
Dash and I were talking about how Tak'e had to be fed, and how I'd get around to it as soon as I was done with the hashbrowns...when I suddenly hear the sound of dog food going into Tak'e's bowl, and there's William having taken the initiative to feed him himself! He used the scooper in the bag and poured it right into Tak'e's bowl without spilling it or anything!
The smart little fella had overheard us and gone ahead to do the chore for us! What a sweetie!!

So yeah, that is all I have to report for now.
Crazy how in one afternoon and evening, the kiddos sort of "advanced" in leaps and bounds.
Maybe I'm overreacting to these tiny little updates, but to me they feel big!
If we can get William to always feed Tak'e...well wow, that'd be frickin' awesome.
And Ella Rose tying her shoes -- well, that's not going away any time soon so that is great too. Really, Miss Christine had just told me how the kids can't wear lace-up shoes to school because it takes so long for the teachers to have to tie and untie them for them...but now that Ella can do it herself, she can wear her lace-up sneakers and whatnot at last!! :)

And the toting of William by Ella... Too cool!! A great way to keep her strong and give her a real sense of purpose and responsibility, which she loves~

Well, that is all I am going to say tonight.
I hope you all have had a great week and are looking forward to an even greater weekend.
Until then, take care and Happy Instant Updates!!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Creative Clothing~

Hey all!

So I think I mentioned a long time ago that Ella and I like to give a theme to our outfits for the day -- be it colors or plants or what-have-you.

Just last week, Ella was a rainbow by doing the following:
- purple socks
- blue pants
- green shorts over her pants
- yellow skirt
- orange shirt
- red sweater

And today she wanted to mimic the character on the cover of the book:

Over the summer we had at least 50 books from this series in our home @_@

Ella's interpretation. Yeaaaah~ ;)
So yeah, it's a fun way to get her involved in the morning dress-up routine.
And here is William in a lamb suit for good measure:

Well, that is all for now.
We are having more lovely autumn days, not too much work but just enough and lots of getting out of the house ;)
Until next time, take care and Happy Creative Clothing!!

Saturday, October 19, 2013


'Allo, 'allo!

Today was another beautiful autumn day.
Really, this has to be the prettiest autumn yet -- such rich colors, and gloriously sunny afternoons.
And today we got to take advantage of it outside with a friend's birthday party!

Ella on the left, Tzippy on the right -- both princessed out~!

Little Tzippy turns 4 tomorrow, so today her lovely family held a "ladybug" themed birthday party. To fit with that theme, our contribution of food was ladybug-esque homemade oreos.

The frosting in the middle was "red"
Miniature marshmallows make the eyes
The finished product looks more like muppet monsters... @_@

I think they went over quite well! I gotta tell you, it is hard to just have one of these little oreos. So...darn...addictive!!
How ironic that my first blog post on them was almost 4 years ago to the day. My, how time flies!!

Ella Rose also wore her black leotard and red tights to look like a ladybug...and the cake at the end was a delicious red velvet cake. YUM!!

Also, while we were there, we got to release real ladybugs into the local park! What a nice act of kindness to the landscaping department, no? :)

William inspecting one -- they are tough enough to withstand his grabby toddler hands

And what was coolest of all, was that we got to take home some ladybugs too!

Their little home~

Ella Rose now has 5 ladybugs in her care named Rachel, Clara, Kate, Laura, and Louisa. She is really enjoying taking care of them, and hopefully they will last longer than "Diana the Snail" from back in early Summer -- bleegh >_<

Well, that is all for now.
Who'dve guessed we'd be enjoying ladybugs at this time of year? :)
Wish us luck with our little ladybug adventures, and until next time -- take care and Happy Ladybugs!!

Proud mama?

Friday, October 18, 2013

New Light~!


So yesterday was a the first day in a long while where Dash and I weren't completely consumed by work.
Therefore, we were able to do a little interior rearranging -- doesn't that feel good to do once in a while? Doing away with inefficient set-ups, obsolete furniture/fixtures, and some much needed clean-up too.

It all started with finally get around to assembling this "puzzle light" my mom got us for Christmas:

Taken with Dash's cell phone -- nifty!!

It's called an Infinity Lights and isn't it just gorgeous?
Our living room is notoriously poorly lit, so by replacing the ancient standing lamp in the corner with this one, the room is far better illuminated.

That switch out, of course, spurred us to shift some tables around, do away with clutter that had been building up on some surfaces and -- last but not least -- update the kids' drawing stations.

You recall how in the summer I came by this drawing tray if sorts for William, yeah?
Well, that was working for a while...until it was evident that he's actually a touch too big for it and likes to try and lean on it, which leads to it collapsing under his weight, etc etc.

Not to mention, two draw-happy children were crowding our tiny hallway as it was!
So we have opted to do two things:

a) give William Ella's desk (the plastic primary colors one), and move it out of the hallway, and into his own little nook next to the fire place:

Now to see about installing that shelf from before here...

b) move Ella's drawing station to the desk upstairs. Remember? The one that we salvaged and fixed up? By having her be up in her room to draw, it should hopefully give her more quiet focused time to draw...without worry of William trying to draw over her art. :D

Well, that is all for now.
I look forward to this new arrangement, and hope that it makes for an overall smoother flow of energy and activities in our home.
Now to get cracking on more of that clutter too...

How about you all?
Any fun home reorganizations/renovations going on with you~?
Don't you love how one little addition/adjustment, can cause a domino effect of changes? :)

Well, until next time.
Take care and Happy New Light!!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

William is 18 months old!

Hello, all!!

I know it's technically the 17th now (by 11 minutes!), but "today" William turned 18 months old :)

I feel like I've been doing posts on what he's up to -- words, video, etc -- so this is going to be a really quick post.
Just recording here that I a) remembered his "half-birthday" b) cared to some degree about that.

Now I can officially say "William is one and a half years old!" No more month-age for him!

Well, until next time...take care and Happy William is 18 Months Old!!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Autumn Fun

Hey, hey~!

Man, oh man, after last week's rain, this week has been gorgeous so far!
A real crisp autumn, we are having.
Bright hues, warm sun, cold evenings. I love it all :)

Here is a video Dash took of the kids this afternoon while I was tutoring.

It really captures the essence of an autumnal childhood moment, no? ;)

Well, that is all for now.
I will be writing soon about the pumpkin patching outing we went on and other fun going-ons in the Dashiell household.

Until then, take care and Happy Autumn Fun!!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

5th Anniversary! :)

Howdy, howdy!

I want to tell you all something!
Yesterday, Dash and I celebrated our 5th Anniversary!! :)

It's odd how it can feel like "wow, 5 years already" and "oh, it's only been 5 years?"
It's been a wonderful five years, and I really can't believe how much more I love him than even just a year ago! Or even month ago. Heck, I love him even more than I did just yesterday!! :)
And the love just grows and grows~

To celebrate our anniversary we went out for a nice dinner at Big River restaurant,  and were there for a leisurely two hours. Yesss! So much laughing, and reminiscing, and planning, and adoring. We had such a lovely time. :)

We also shared a bottle of wine from our marriage year '08, which is the only photo I took the entire time. Ha!

Mm, good!

The wine was so good and the meal so filling that I promptly fell asleep when we got home at 9pm.
So it was a relatively mild night, but a great one all together.

Thank you to Angelica for watching William and Ella, and to Dash for being the best hubby I could ask for.

Until next time, take care and Happy 5th Anniversary!!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Tutoring...Barter Style

Hey again, all~

So I'm sure many of you know that my main career is as a Japanese translator.
But did you also know that I tutor the language?

I've been doing it fairly consistently since...I wanna say 2007?
My first "student" was my girlfriend back in L.A. :)

And recently, I've taken on two students who have to be the most brilliant tutees I've ever had!
ジュナイス and マーリー are enthusiastic teenagers who are quick learners and love anime/manga, so we totally relate with each other and our lessons are very fun.

But best of accordance to Gift Economy-esque standards...I've arranged it with their parents so that in place of traditional cash exchange, I am repaid for my lessons with services!
ジュナイス's mom agreed to babysit both kids for date nights (buya), and マーリー's mom is a massage therapist! Scoooore!!

Solace Care Massage & Wellness Center LLC

I just had my second massage from her just this past Wednesday and it was gloooorious.
I would highly recommend her services, as she includes heated stones and cupping in her sessions too! Hurray!! :D

This arrangement is so nice because even if I were paid in money, I probably wouldn't have the discipline to use it on regular date nights and massage sessions, so this way I skip the middle step and go straight to something I really ought to be doing for my marriage and myself. :)

I can't say that I'll always opt for service-over-money arrangements with future tutees as well, but in this case for sure it is working out lovely.

Well, that's all I wanted to say for today.
Do you do anything barter-style with your services?
If so, do share!
Until next time, take care and Happy Tutoring Barter Style!
And last but not least!!
For good measure, some recent photos of William (courtesy of Rachel!):

Pretty in pink~ And he looks tickled pink, eh? Eh?? :D

I just love his scrunched up happy faces~~

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

William's Words

Hey, hey!

I feel like I haven't talked about Sweet William here in a while, so here is a post all about him.
Sans pictures though...sorry!!

It's mostly going to be about what he can say these days.
Because boy oh boy he is understanding and saying a lot! And we are especially enjoying his signing.
So in terms of hand signals he can do at this point they are:

- train
- car
- airplane
- milk
- all done
- shirt
- apple
- night-night
- more

Really not a whole lot, but ones that he uses almost daily. Ha!
And he'll respond when I signal things like "potty?" and "water?"

Now for the spoken words, it's a longer list but shown in related sets:

- colors: brown, red, green, blue, orange
- directions: up, down, out
- body parts: mouth, eye, ear, nose, hair
- clothes: hat, boots, shoes
- animals: cat, dog, bird, bug
- random: hot, no, night-night, ow, draw, ball, bath
- our names! (Mama, Dada, Ella, Tak'e, "me")

Hmm... I could've sworn it was more than that, but writing it down here it suddenly doesn't feel like a whole lot.
I guess it's the fact that he'll understand whole sentences and directions from us that makes it feel like he's "talking" more. Like I love being able to tell him to give me a kiss, or say g'night to Daddy and Ella before coming to bed and he'll go and do it. He also loves pointing out body parts when we ask him things like "Where's William's pompees?" heh heh

These past few days, he's also gotten into fetching me a towel while I'm in the shower which is so sweet! :)

And I could've sworn that when I was putting on his bedtime diaper he tried to say "diaper" too! :D

On that note, last week we were experiencing a bit of potty-striking from William.
When asked if he had to go he'd say "no" adamantly...only to pee himself seconds later. And when I knew he had to go and would try to seat him on the potty, he'd fight by arching himself and such.
So that was frustrating >_<
He had a bit of a fever last Thursday, and that was what triggered the start of the strike, which continued even when he was well again. The distracting chaos of the Clothing Swap didn't help either, but finally yesterday and today -- when I made a concerted effort to not get bent out of shape over it -- he starting communicating his elimination needs to me again! So we are back on track with that at the moment, and I am very happy for it. Phew!

Well, I guess that's all for now with my precious boy William.
No joining of words yet, but he definitely seems very bright to us, and he is very sweet and likes to do things that make his Mama and Daddy smile~

I'll try to get more photorific posts up soon.
Hopefully of our fun bicycle-tagalong-trailer train! :D

Well, until next time take care and Happy William's Words!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Clothing Swap - Results!

Hey all!

So I have more news regarding the Clothing Swap that happened yesterday.

Firstly...we made it on the front page of the local newspaper, The Gazette-Times!
Here is a link to the online version of the story.

Okay, technically the front page was a little blurb about the swap...and then the entire last page of Section A (A10) was dedicated to it! Awesome!!
The story was accurate and positive and the photos were great! There was even a hilarious shot of my friend Susanna trying on a bra over her clothes -- so glad that got into both the online and print edition of the newspaper!! :D It really encompassed the spirit of the event -- goofy, clothing-fueled fun!!
I am going to cut out the story and pin it on my inspiration board upstairs to remember the good times. Yay! :)

The other thing I'd like to talk about regarding the event is why I enjoy cloth swapping so much in the first place:

1) Easy on the wallet
That's a pretty "duh" reason, but one that should be mentioned nonetheless. I would rather spend my money on good quality food rather than clothes in a store when we all know there are tons of clothes sitting in mounds, stuffed in drawers, and overflowing out of closets in so many people's homes. So why not just take advantage of that, while lightening the load of the donors both physically and mentally~? (I truly believe that clutter like that -- like any, really -- can really bog a person down mentally...and sometimes they are not even aware of it! Though I definitely can feel it when it happens to my home~)

2) Easy on the environment
There were no sales tags or courtesy store bags involved in the procuring of these clothes. Because they are second-hand, all the initial manufacturing/transportation/etc has played its role just once, and doesn't need to be repeated by my giving it a new home. My consumption of these clothes does not necessarily deem that more clothes be produced -- that is to say: they did not result in an empty space on the store shelf that needs to be filled up with a new order. 

3) Keeps me honest
When I get home with my Clothing Swap loot it makes me reassess the state of my wardrobe. What do I honestly still wear? Do I really even like every piece of my wardobe? What has been sitting in the drawer for that "one appropriate event" that never came? Or that came and I opted for one of my usuals to go in? By giving it a good hard look, I don't hold onto clothes indefinitely while grasping onto some vain hope that "Maybe I'll be that size someday!" or "But I might need in case (insert unlikely scenario) comes up!"

4) Keeps me free
Because I did not make a monetary investment into any of my clothes, I am not terribly attached to them. I don't mind if they get sullied or worn out. I am okay to see them go eventually. It would not be as vexing if I were to lose any of them either through forgetfulness or to the tragedy of a major spill or other mishap. Maybe some would interpret that to mean that I don't care for my clothes, but don't get me wrong -- I'll clean a stain and mend a hole as best as I can -- but I definitely do not get bent out of shape over it, or take way too many precautions when wearing them like not getting down on my hands and knees with the kids or braving the wet NW weather.
By this point, nearly every article of clothing in my closet was either gifted to me, procured at a Clothing Swap, bought for cheap at a thrift store/garage sale, or even found on the street (no joke).

But there is one piece that I can think of that was before I opened my eyes to second-hand goodness, and it is something I bought at a Ren Faire some years back for literally $300+. @_@ Don't get me wrong, it's a lovely piece...but it's not necessarily something I love nor is it completely functional or sometimes even comfortable -- but it is the lingering memory of that price tag and the money I put down for that keeps me from letting it go. Is that silly or what? And yet, it's the truth. Until I can find a person or cause to give it to, I have a major hang-up about this article of clothing...and all because I feel tethered to it for the "investment" I made in it all those years back. Go figure! :P

5) Fun
Really, the whole day is a mix of maximum alertness to look out for everyone's needs (as well as find some pieces for me) and just reveling in the energy of the place -- mamas-to-be perusing the baby table for their future bundle-of-joy's wardrobe; old friends running into each other; little kids running around and trying on clothes that are novel and therefore totally awesome to them, etc etc.

As I mentioned in the post I made on the Spring Clothing Swap, you should consider holding a clothing swap of your own that you invite your friends to. Even small intimate clothing swaps are fun and can have fantastic results.
If you do hold a Swap of your own, will you promise to tell me about it? I want to hear how it went! :)

Well, that is all for now.
Sorry there are no pictures -- it is late, but I am sure I will take photos of some new ensembles my updated wardobe has to offer soon :)

I have just finished putting away all my new pieces and in the process filled a garbage bag of items that mainly had to do with Point 3 (see above). Tomorrow, I hope to have Ella do the same thing, because oh Lordy Bigordy, the girl has at least two dozen dresses -- does one little girl really need that many?? We shall see~ ;)

Until next time, take care and Happy Clothing Swap Results!!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Corvallis Family Clothing Swap

Hey all!

So today it finally happened.
The Clothing Swap that I have been looking forward to since last Spring!

This is the fourth technical clothing swap that's been held by what I'll call my core group of knitter-friends (heh) and it was hands down the best.

It was just long enough, with just enough help, just enough attendance and just enough leftovers to donate. It just felt so...right! :)))
(And there were no broken mirrors -- score!)

To reiterate what our Clothing Swaps are all about, it's a way to replenish our wardrobes without spending any money and getting rid of clothes we no longer use for ones that we will. In the past, they've been "mama-baby" events, but this time we expanded it to include men too, hence the name change to the "Corvallis Family Clothing Swap" (CFCS).

There were other key changes that included:

- a committee of volunteers running it before, during, and after the event. Eight or so of us total...?
- more destinations to send the leftovers as donations to
- more signs, clearer communication in general
- we reached a broader community through school systems, and parenting programs/groups
- more efficient use of the tables and space
- more snacks and re-energizing wrap-up meal at the end for the volunteers
- local newspaper coverage (rockin'!)
- 3 mirrors around the room to offer easier trying on of clothes

Really, having more voices and hands in the organizing and pulling off of the event made a huge difference! Whereas last time the tearing down was very exhausting and demanding, it was fun and I felt energized the whole time :) Plus everyone had such good input that made a real difference in terms of efficiency and fun~

Best of all, I think we reached the right audience more this time by appealing to mamas-to-be through different venues so that the clothes were going to people who could really use them. Nothing better than helping mamas-to-be not feel the strain of shopping for their little one, because there is so much perfectly good baby gear out there with little-to-no wear on it that they don't have to spend a dime on.
It felt great to see people happily coming in and just being stoked that they could pick and choose whatever clothes they bring home for free! :)

I really think that we've done all the hard work this time...and the next one (held in Spring '14) will be far less work, since we just have to reuse what we already set in place this time around. :)

Well, enough yapping and on with the photos, eh?
See below~

Somewhat early in the day. Notice we've got a man here! Naturally, our friend Matt :)
A fantastic spread so generously donated by all the volunteers.
Including black bananas courtesy of Chrissy, ha!
This was about the heyday of the event. Lotsa folks, for sure!!
Of course, the ever necessary SAFE ZONE.
That stroller there was mine...and by the end it was covered in clothes!
We made use of the Table Rollers to put the children's shoes on.
There were times in the day when peeps just streeeeamed right in.
Gotta love the social aspect of The Swap. Old friends catching up, and new ones meeting too!
Li'l Henry cameo there too ;)

All in all, I think the event rawked.
The space really worked well even with double-wide tables and kids running all over the place. There were no mishaps and everyone seemed very happy. Ella Rose and I kept trying on outfit after outfit. There were just so many good finds!! As usual, I came with a bunch of stuff to purge...only to end up bringing home three huge garbage bags of loot. Ha!!

In any case, none of this would have been possible without the help of all my lovely lady friends:

R>L: Rachel, Me, Sophie, Sarah, Peachy Emily, Emily M., Kim, and Beth (unfortunately Angela had already left)
(All those boxes on the table in front of us are what went to local charities)

♥♡♥♡♥♡ I love you all!! ♥♡♥♡♥♡

To all those who came, I hope you had a great time and thank you for making The Swap what it is! :)
To those who couldn't make it, don't worry because we'll be holding the next one in the Spring as always. Start saving up your clothes now ;)

I look forward to reveling in all my new scores, and seeing all the CFCS committee members at the next knitting night. We'll all probably marvel at how every item on our bodies was a product of a Clothing Swap. Ha!!

Until next time, take care and Happy Corvallis Family Clothing Swaps!!

(And last but not least, a random shot of William and Ella play-driving)

William loves getting behind the wheel.


Hey all!

After a day of work inside the house and out, Dash and I got to enjoy a lovely date together!
It wasn't romantic by any stretch, but it was fun ;)

First, we got some Burgerville drive-thru, which I stuffed into my pants pockets and under my scarf to smuggle into the theatre.
The movie started at 4:45...we got there at 5:06...and still didn't miss a single second of the film!
That means that a good 20 minutes was solid ads, ads, ads!! >_@
TIL that it's okay to be even a little late to a movie, because odds are, it hasn't even started yet. So I'm glad we didn't end up sitting through car commercials, and Coke ads, and all that junk. Blegh!

Aaaanyway, the movie we enjoyed while chowing down on our burgers was Gravity.

I must say I knew nothing about this movie except for the one line:
"two astronauts face a seemingly impossible plight in space."

That project I've been working on is about astronauts in training and in space, so I knew I wanted to see this film.
And boy was it goooood!!!!!
Riveting, and suspenseful, and gorgeous... and it even brought a tear to my eye at one point ;_;
I don't want to spoil anything, but I'll just let you know that main character has a 4-year-old daughter with brown hair that she doesn't like to brush... Can anyone say "Ella"??

So yeah, I highly recommend this movie.
And in 3D!!

That's all for now~
I hope you had a nice Friday night, and until next time take care and Happy G R A V I T Y!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

DIY Play Dough

Hello again everybody!

Goodness, what a long absence! >_@
Remember that big project I mentioned in the last post or so?
Well, although I enjoy the challenging nature of is also eating up quite a bit of my time!
Today is the first day in a while where I did something with the kids that really felt worthy of posting about.
And it's not even all that worthy -- ha!

It's homemade play dough.
I have been meaning to make this stuff for nearly a year now! But what always held me back was the "cream of tartar" ingredient that so many recipes call for.
Not only do I not have something like that on-hand in my kitchen, but I don't even know what it is!

So today I finally Googled "cream of tartar substitute in homemade playdough", and voila! A recipe came up that fit just right. This is the recipe we followed to make this:

Of course we had to make each color of the rainbow ;)

It was so easy and all the ingredients are so cheap!
At first, I was afraid it was going to leave oil on my hands, but after handling it enough -- especially when applying the food coloring -- that greasy feeling went away and all that was left was a lovely smooth softness. Mmm...

Our system for applying the colors: make a dent, squeeze out drops, roll around!

Ella Rose had been asking for play dough these days after watching a couple episodes of "BabyTV: Art & Music" off of Netflix. I gotta say, I appreciate how it shows viewers art-in-the-making. There is a "Clay World" segment (all of 4 minutes long, I'm sure) where someone's hands builds a little scene, be it a zoo, a farm, or a park all out of clay. Complete with little people and animals! That is apparently Ella's favorite part.

So now we have our own play dough to make such art with too!
The first thing Ella made was a pair of rainbow snails...but I failed to take a photo of it! Sorry!! ;_;

Oh well, I'm sure there will be much art in the Dashiell home with our new set of play dough, so I will catch it next time~ ;)

That is all for now.
I have also been busy preparing for the next Clothing Swap which is going to be even bigger and better than look forward to a post about that very soon!

Until next time, take care and Happy DIY Play Dough!