Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Around our Home

We have been enjoying:

Fresh Summer Fruit
Since I rarely buy plastic wrap or foil, I thought I'd try using one of my fabric bowl covers on the watermelon. It worked great - if you go a couple of days without using it, the edges can get a bit dry, but that's not a big deal, and it stays securely on the watermelon, unlike foil!

Playing in the Closet
This makes the perfect little hideaway!

Fresh Sprouts
Using a bowl to prop up the jar is such an obvious solution, I don't know why I hadn't thought of it before!

Ezra's Cute Smiles
That's the best picture I've been able to get so far!

A Trip to the Beach

I was lucky enough to grow up with grandparents who lived right on the beach. I have so many memories of spending summer days (and days during the rest of the year, too) on their beach. And I want my kids to have some of those memories, too. So Saturday we drove up to visit my grandma and enjoy some time on the beach. Thankfully, it was a beautiful day (rare for us this summer), and the kids had a great time playing outside.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

These Days

When Benjamin was a baby, I remember being a little overwhelmed with taking care of a baby and a home. I just didn't seem to have time to get everything done. I remember mentioning to my mom that I didn't know how people were able to care for a baby and older children - and I especially didn't know how they were able to also do things like crafts!

Thankfully, things have gotten easier since those baby days. Thinking about that, it's kind of funny that I now have a baby, two other children, am usually able to get most of my housework done, and am still often able to work on craft or other projects!

And I'm not trying to say that I have it all together (because I certainly don't), or that we don't have bad days (because we certainly do), but for the most part, our days run relatively smoothly. Somehow new babies just fit into your life (and they're much easier when they're not your first!). Having Joanna, I remember, was a bit of an adjustment as I learned how to take care of more than one child, but since I already have that down, Ezra has just kind of fit right in without too many ripples. I am so thankful for that - another example of the fact that God doesn't give us more than we can handle!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Fresh from the garden...

The first spring I was married, our apartment had a community garden that I was able to take advantage of to grow some of our own produce. Since then, I have been limited to container gardening on our deck, and it hasn't gone well.

This spring, though, my parents offered my brother (who also lives in a condo) and I garden space in their back yard. We took them up on it, and so this year we have been blessed with our own fresh produce once again!

My two garden spots have done quite well, and several times now we have come home with a heaping bag of lettuce, peas, some spinach, carrots, and even a little broccoli! We only got a little spinach and broccoli because the few really warm days we have had this summer caused both to bolt and go to seed quickly. (On a positive note, broccoli flowers are actually quite pretty and made it into a lovely bouquet I also brought home with me!)

I also have beans, tomatoes, onions, and peppers that are still growing - hopefully those will be fruitful as well!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A project in the works...

The past several days I've been really wanting to work on a sewing project, so after a trip to the fabric store, I'm finally going to start on a project that's been in my mind for quite a while. In fact, I had originally planned to have Benjamin's quilt finished before Ezra arrived.

I had a design in mind, but just the other day had a brainstorm and changed it, and it will now not only be a lot faster and easier, but I think it will look better, too.

The fabric is all cut I'm anxious to get sewing!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Baby Projects...Revisited

Before Ezra was born, I had made a few new baby things - things I was anxious to try out once he arrived. Here's how they're working out:

Because my regular prefolds had been so large and bulky on Joanna when she was a newborn, I had taken some of my diapers and cut them down into smaller contoured diapers I thought might fit better on a small baby.

These do fit much better - they're not bulky at all - but unfortunately I think that there is not quite enough to them, because they leak pretty badly. However, I do think that the fault might lie more with Ezra than the diapers because I have had a number of leaks even when I use my regular diapers, a problem that was extremely rare with the other kids. I think that he might just be a really heavy wetter. So while the contours fit really nicely, I'm only using them as back-up diapers right now, simply because I prefer a bulky diaper to wet clothes.

I decided not to purchase a $20 swaddling blanket in favor of making my own for just a couple dollars. I am so glad I did! I absolutely love this blanket - it is lightweight yet warm and is the perfect size to get a nice snug swaddle that won't come undone. I think this might be a new go-to for nice but inexpensive baby shower gifts!

After using this a few times with Joanna on my back and liking it, I was anxious to try this with a new baby. I just have to say - I have finally found a baby carrier that works! I have now used this for a couple hours at a time with no neck or back pain! That is so exciting to me! There is a bit of a learning curve, with the long straps and having to tie everything up, but it's pretty simple once you get the hang of it. It has been great for taking walks or doing some shopping, and it works wonderfully for helping Ezra go back to sleep when he wakes up early from a nap! I am absolutely loving this! I still think I would make the straps a bit narrower if I were to make another one, but the wide straps haven't really bothered me, and overall I am extremely pleased with it!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Potty Treats

Although Benjamin has been fully potty-trained for a number of months now, sometimes he has a challenging day (or week, or longer), and I've found that bringing back the "potty treats" is the best way to encourage continued success. In fact, sometimes we have a bit too much success - he often goes from seemingly forgetting the potty chair is even there to all of a sudden having to go use it every five minutes. But I suppose doling out a few extra gummy bears is better than having to clean up a few extra messes!