Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Rain, Rain, Go Away

All kinds of wet has been the scene from our window over the last few days. When I noticed a momentary break in nature's tear drops this afternoon, I made a dash for it and tried to get a picture of the kids together outside in their hats. (I made Magson one!) But by the time I got them and my camera situated, it started pouring again. All day I've been doing crazy things, like ignoring the fact that my camera is not waterproof and nor are my children.

Crazy me aside, thank you all for your comments for my hat giveaway. I wish I could make everybody one! It really isn't that hard, so if you're interested, I bought the pattern here.

But on to the giveaway results~the lucky winner of this lovely hat is...

My friend, Rae! (Email me what color and size you'd like; I have 6-12 month, 12-24 month, 2T-4T, and 4-10, but I could probably figure out how to make an adult size if you wish.)

Oh, and in case you're curious, for these giveaways, I jot everyone's name down on scraps of paper, stir them up really well, and then let my heart skip around for a few very long seconds before I dip in. It's so exciting!

Yay for Rae!

Monday, February 23, 2009

A Tip of the Hat for Hand-Me-Downs

OK, I ain't gonna lie. I'm pretty proud of myself--I made that hat! It took me hours and hours. And hours. Five tries to be exact, but I did it! And to celebrate, I'm giving one away, so leave a comment if you're interested.

In other good news, Maggie lucked out this last week. She got three bags of hand-me-downs from our dear friend, including the above outfit she's wearing. Lucky girl! She's tried on outfit after outfit validating her young obsession with clothes. Like mother like daughter, I guess! I think she was most thrilled about the "exercise shoes" she got--little Nike's. She keeps riding on one leg of my elliptical like it's a merry-go-round, all the while staring down at her feet and cooing, "Look, Mommy! I'm exercising!"

And finally, I managed to beat the sunset (barely) and take these photos of Maggie in her new hat I'm so proud of. I'm still figuring out my style as a photographer, but I'm pretty sure these fit the frame. I adore these pictures and hope to take lots more like them!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Confessions of a Makeup Artist

It's as though I've rolled out the red carpet for my three little sisters--as they watch me stumble through life, they can in turn walk confidently knowing what not to do. Take my clueless first fling with makeup, for example.

When I turned fourteen and was finally allowed to wear makeup, I was ready and armed with eyeliner, mascara and blush. On the dawn of my long-awaited birthday, I took my beauty markers and played face artist. I glopped the mascara goo on generously even after hearing the appalling rumor that mascara's ingredients include bat droppings. It takes pain to be beautiful, I consoled myself.

I tarred my eyelashes unsparingly, lovingly stroking the top lashes and then the bottom. I was all ears at school when a beautiful and bosomly classmate told me that if your lashes clumped, as hers always did, to separate them with a needle. (This same girl also copied my homework once, even writing my name at the top of her paper; I should never have implemented her needle to eyeball trick.) All of this glopping and needle separation took place after I indelicately outlined my eyes with eyeliner. I imagine my eyes never went unnoticed again as they looked like double targets on a dart board.

It didn't help that my mother is naturally gorgeous without any makeup. Yet, while she didn't know much about makeup, after watching me, she also learned quickly what not to do--the ashy mascara smudges always beneath my eyes were of considerable torment to her. After some desperate motherly pleas, I heeded her advice and stopped putting eyeliner and mascara on my bottom lashes, a piece of priceless makeup advice I still follow.

Oh, and I can't forget the blush! I have a long criminal record of over applying this pink pixie dust. For a long time, I had this obsession with the color of my eyes, wishing they were more hazel green rather than hazel brown. My eye color has changed over the years, getting greener with time, I'm thankful, but when I was younger, an overdose of blush seemed to bring out the emerald. There is many a high school photo with me looking rosie-cheeked and clownish. Somehow I fear I still get a little carried away in this department.

So, (sigh) when I watch my sisters grow up with such style and grace, I'm initially jealous, but then a little pride seeps in. It's all thanks to me, I think.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Someday, but not today, I will post a brief five-year history of my Valentines Days with Magnet--it's quite the story, something I've been working on writing for years, and I think I just might finish it this year, so maybe next V-day I'll post it.

In the meantime, I did draw names for the dozen-rose bouquet giveaway, and it all proved to be a little tricky! The winner was Heather, but I haven't been able to get in touch with her all weekend, plus she wasn't at church today, so I'm wondering if she's out of town. Since I've had the flowers for a few days now and wanted to give them away as fresh as possible, I decided to instead give them to my friend Pam who's husband is working abroad in Japan (sorry, Heather!). I thought I'd surprise Pam and dropped by her house after church only to find her not home, either! I decided to just leave the bouquet on her doorstep. Hopefully she'll arrive to them safe and sound when she gets home tonight. Congrats, Pam!

As for my Valentines Day, here's what made it special:
  • Magnet's mom stopped by for a few hours in the afternoon and showered us with love.
  • I bought a big picture frame from Ikea a couple of months ago, but it got knocked over and the glass shattered. As a V-day gift, Magnet replaced the glass. I love thoughtful surprises like that!
  • He also had this arrangement specially designed for me. I've never loved a bouquet of flowers more!

  • Magnet's been hinting lately that he'd love for me to learn how to bake pies, so I made my first apple pie for him as his V-day gift. Amazingly, it turned out really yummy!

  • I also made a favorite Thai food dish of ours that brings back lots of happy memories from when we were engaged and I waitressed at a Thai restaurant. We ate Thai food daily back then! But, unfortuantely, last night's rendition was a little bland.
Being in the floral industry, Valentines Day conjures a range of emotions, but mostly, I just spend the week feeling lucky--lucky that we're a part of Flowers to Go and very lucky to be married to Magnet.

Hope you all felt lucky and loved this year, too!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Some backwards things have been happening around here lately:

*First--you know how most kids jump on the couch and hug a wall the second a vacuum is turned on? (That's been the case with Maggie, anyway.) Magson jets after the vacuum on all fours like a puppy chasing his tail the second it vrooms. I feel like he wants to hop on for a ride, and I practically run him over as I dodge him left and right. I almost feel mean when I fake a left so he'll get out of my way so I can get beneath him. He even gets all giggly when the air blows in his face~backwards!

*Second--you know how people always say it's better to read the book first? Well, I'm beginning to develop a second opinion. One of Maggie's favorite movies lately is Matilda. She's watched it more times than I'd like to admit and says things like, "I'm right. You're wrong. And there's nothing you can do about it!" to me all the time. Lovely, I know. She talks about the "chokey" and the "mean teacher" and the "nice teacher." On good days, she pretends I'm Miss Honey; on bad days, well, we won't go there (trunch*cough*bull). With all this Matilda talk, I decided to check out the book from the library. Before bedtime, I read her a chapter and she's mesmerized. We're like eight chapters in! I never would have thought a three-year-old would sit through a chapter book like that. So, maybe (big maybe) it's not a bad idea to let your preschooler memorize a movie and then bust out the novel?? Once again, backwards!

*Third--you know those "with it" moms that never lock their keys in the car or lose anything? I'm not one of them. Yesterday, for the second time in the last month, I locked the keys in the car. The timing couldn't have been worse: Maggie was at preschool; Magnet was tied up getting ready for Valentines Day; a snowstorm was presenting itself; the spare key was nowhere to be found; my cell phone was in its usual health--nearly dead.

When Magnet was able to pull away and rescue the embarrassed me, he stopped at home to pick up the spare key first. But, like I said, the spare key had vanished. He called me to ask for suggestions of where to look. There was a heavy silence and then me, "I'll call Maggie at preschool and ask her if she knows where it is."

Maggie, who hates talking on the phone more than I do, cheerfully, and I want to say "maturely," greeted me. It was as if I were frantically calling her to tell her I'd forgotten my lunch and she was on the other end apologetic and full of solutions.

"Hi, Mom!" (Not Mommy-- sad emoticon)

"Hi--hey, do you know where the spare key with the orange tag on it is? I locked my keys in the car again, and Daddy can't find the spare one anywhere."

(The whole time I feel I'm talking too fast and way over her head--spare key? Like she's going to know what I'm talking about? Oh ye of little faith, right?)

"Don't you remember?" she says to me as though I'm the silliest mom ever. "It's up in my closet in my pink toy car--re-mem-ber?"

I laugh for the first time all morning. We hang up.

Problem is, it isn't where she so confidently told me it was, so Laura (preschool teacher) was kind enough to risk her life and drive Maggie to stranded me in the snowy weather. Magnet soon arrived without a spare key, and so drove us home in the Flowers to Go car that doesn't have a back seat. (Yes, Maggie, Magson and I rode in the front passenger the slippery snow.) We arrived home safely, but not without sliding into a curb as we drove into our development~backwards, and just plain wrong!

Monday, February 9, 2009


She's back! You might recognize Miss Love from previous pictures. Aside from my kiddies and my sisters, she is my favorite model. She's sweet as sugar and oh-so photogenic. It was such a treat for me to get her in with her mom and dad--one of the most loving couples I know.

I hope you all have a wonderful Valentines week--it's sure a busy time for Flowers to Go. And just for fun, I'm giving away a dozen rose bouquet to be delivered to a lucky reader. Leave me a comment if you live around here, and I'll enter your name in the drawing! (We do deliver nationwide, but since I'll be making this special delivery, I'm keeping it local this time.)

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I Can't. I'm Not. I Don't.

I can't sing. I can't sway my hips. I can't do math in my head. I'm not good at public speaking. I can't speak loudly. I'm not a good listener. I can't focus under many circumstances. I can't hit a volleyball right. I can't read maps very well. I can't keep my house clean. I can't cook. I don't call people when I should. I can't say no to chocolate. I don't take tests well...and the list goes on...

But isn't it interesting that a baby's list is probably longer than anyone's because they really can't do most things, and yet they're the most perfect creatures and maybe the most admired people on Earth.

And while they can't do much, they're always looking up, and their eyes are filled more with hope than discouragement.

And we love to help them accomplish things--we don't get jealous.

And somehow learning to stand is the most remarkable thing, and we cheer at the sight.

I've been thinking a lot lately about all the things I can't do, but wish I could do; the things I don't do, but know I should do; the things I'm not, that I wish I were. And then I'll look closer at these photos of my kids, Magson in particular, and sigh with amazement at all that my 10-month old, 24-pound, crawling/standing baby of mine teaches me. He reminds me of how far I've come in life, and that I should take joy in the little accomplishments, cheer others on in their successes, look up and hold on to hope. It's neat for me to think that every person was a baby once-- a perfect, innocent and beautiful baby-- and that we all have the potential to make it in life.

Monday, February 2, 2009

My Sunbeams

Here's to an ordinary day like today, when motherhood kept me especially busy, so much so that it's after midnight and I still need to put the clean sheets on our bed that is covered with three mountains of fresh and unfolded laundry. But I have to remind myself that the laundry will always be there, but my two little sunbeams are growing, growing, growing until one day they will be big sunbeams shining their lights far from home.



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