in our own backyard (part 2)

Blooms on our tree peony at dusk, and in a bouquet on the kitchen table...absolutely glorious.  I think I've been out back at least 20 times today just to look at them, and watch the bees rolling around inside them.  That big one in the bouquet is over 8" in diameter!

new bear

He's the newest addition to the toy cupboard. I love him because he looks like my sweet nephew Arthur (if Arthur were a teddy bear). 


for babies

I'm just finishing up a new batch of these Waldorf-inspired baby toys today...three dogs, three polar bears and one brown bear.  It's so fun to be working with this pattern again.  My cupboards are starting to fill up with toys for Renegade which makes me feel good but I have so many more things I want to make.


in our own backyard

Cursive and little bits of nature...two of my favorite things.


god's eye

I've been seeing a lot of really pretty god's eyes lately (like here) and realized I'd somehow made it through my childhood having never made one.  I made my very first one last night and thought TODAY was probably a good day to show it off...is everybody still with us?

When I sat down with my sicks I suddenly had a hard time figuring out how to actually wrap the string around them correctly (I think I was kind of over-thinking things) so I got out this book I have on my shelf Making Things With Yarn and sure enough there it was.  I was hoping it might be a project Oscar and I could do together this summer. I think with big sticks and yarn he could do it.

I thought I'd take the opportunity to show you some of the pages from this great book.  Unlike many craft books out there you will definitely not be intimidated by any glossy, overly produced, perfect looking projects!  I mean, just look at the adorable kid on the cover.  He has a supper choppy home-spun haircut and some kind of food on his face...just how my own kids look most of the time!  Makes me want to do a kid's craft book myself...

                                                                                                                                                                     Best Kid on the Cover of a Book Prize


lucky find

Just look at what we found at a garage sale last weekend!  The story is that it's counted cross stitch, from Italy and over 100 years old.  It's in pretty good shape- even the original frame,  and I love the beautifully faded colors.  It's hard to tell from the photo but it's nice and big too.  And I got it for a very very good price.  The onset of garage sale season...yet another great thing about the warm weather months! 


two bits

Bit by bit things are coming together for our trip to San Francisco for Renegade this summer.  We bought our tickets (four of them this time...ouch) and I'm really excited to see some dear friends of ours there.  I have a good start on making things for the sale but I have A LOT of work ahead of me in the next month and a half.



We have had some crazy weather here in Minnesota this past week...very hot and humid, kind of cold and rainy, tornado warnings and even golf ball sized hail!  The rain and warm sun have finally made things lush and green around here and it feels so good.  I've spent a lot of time last couple of weeks working outside in the garden and I have just a few more things to plant (for now).


thank you, mom

My mom, keeping me safe in 1975.  Happy Mother's Day!



I've been meaning to post photos of what the kid's playroom ended up looking like ever since I posted pictures of their bedroom but I never manage to take a picture in the very tiny window of time in which it is actually clean.  This is what it looks like most of the time...actually it usually looks even messier.

I hope you are having fun and making all kinds of messes this weekend too!


two bears and a mouse

I was asked by a magazine to submit some toys for possible inclusion in an upcoming issue.  I sent these three: two bears I was never quite able to let go of and a mouse I just made recently from a brand new pattern.  They are some of my best I think, and I hope they make it in!  I plan to work with all three of these patterns some more for the work I'm doing for Renegade this summer.  I'm pretty crazy about this mouse pattern if you want to know the truth.


boy's day

Today is the Japanese holiday Boy's Day (or Children's Day) and we celebrated as we always do, by making onigiri.  It has turned into a favorite family tradition in our house.  Today was the first time Oscar is not with us for lunch on Boy's Day as he is at school all day now.  I got to pack his in his specialized onigiri shaped lunch box (which usually holds a sandwich).  I've posted it before but here is a recipe for making onigiri...fun, easy and so delicious.  It brings me back to my days in Japan...we used to buy them at the Circle K after school.

Hooray for boys!


time capsule

I bought this vintage velvet blazer for Oscar years ago...in fact I think he was still a baby when I found it but I figured it was worth waiting for him to grow into it.  It's been hanging in his closet  ever since and today he wore it for the first time.  When I looked inside the pocket this morning I found these treasures from long ago.  Did Mike wear this blazer on his first day of school?  To a Christmas party?  I bet there is a picture out there somewhere...how I wish I could see it!

A bit about Oscar's outfit:  If I saw a five year old wearing an outfit this cool I'd probably assume that the poor kid's mom was dressing him up like a tiny hipster to make herself look cool, or in the hopes of grooming her son into a rock star or some nonsense.  I swear I had nothing to do with this skinny jeans, velvet blazer, wolf t-shirt combo!  The kid has taste, that's all. 


missing carrot!

These are the little rabbits my boys got from me for Easter.  Jude's rabbit seems to have lost its carrot so these two are trying to share.  It is truly amazing how much time a person can spend looking for lost toys or more often pieces of toys!