Monday, August 30, 2010

Eee is Three!

It's looking rather festive around here at the moment.

Little Eee has turned 3.

All she has been asking to do for her birthday is to eat Mermaid Cake. So, very grateful that the little bub is still being well taken care of in utero, I set about decorating the lovely Mindy Mermaid. It was no mean feat for a very tired, brain stretched, heavily pregnant lady who can hardly stand up long enough to complete my usual duties let alone this enormous extra one.

My brain went mushy. I couldn't figure out how to place the spearmint leaves for the tail effectively. I wondered why I do this to myself. Fortunately my Ess along with my Generous Gentleman came to my rescue and joined me in preparations of this enormous cake. The challenges began to wane and the fun increased.

As we sat down outside enjoying cake together, little Eee announced, "I love my mermaid cake" with the sweetest little smile on her growing face, her head cocked to one side. That said it all, I realised why I put myself through all the challenges of cake decorating for each birthday. The girls love it so much. They love requesting a cake of their choosing and then seeing it come to life, they love helping in the process of creation and they love consuming all the sugary icing and lollies (of course).

I love the memories that are being created, the skilled, generous children that are being created who I know will want to do this for their children one day. After all, it was my mother who taught me with all her cake decorating. Some of a much greater standard than mine. She made wedding cakes in her prime.

Happy Birthday little Miss Eee, we love you so much!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

One Sock

Diddle, diddle, dumpling, my son John,
Went to bed with his stockings on;
One shoe off, and the other shoe on,
Diddle, diddle, dumpling, my son John.
~ English Nursery Rhyme

Oh dear!

Look at my poor Ess! She has been wandering around one-socked for a little over a week now.

Why is it just so hard to complete that second sock? It took only one relaxing wet Sunday afternoon to complete the first slipper.

Here is the next one. So near to completion. Just a few more rows until the toe decreases are complete. It is quite hard knitting those last few rows with the smaller needles on the bulky wool. Although that is the combination that makes these Mary Jane Slippers such a great asset for slip sliding on tiled floors without wearing too quickly.

It's made of two strands of Lincraft Fairy Floss Yarn in a pink rainbow colour combination combined with one strand of yellow Panda Zoomy purchased through eBay last season. Rainbow yarns are a big favourite in our house so I knew the yarn would come in handy for something for my precious Ess.

That nursery rhyme I sang so often when Ess was a baby with those socks continually coming off those sweet tiny feet seems to be pertinent today as well. In so many ways the little ones change, yet in some they remain the same.

Diddle diddle dumpling my daughter Ess
Went to bed with her stockings on;
One sock off and the other sock on
Diddle diddle dumpling my daughter Ess.

Looking forward to another little pair of teeny tiny, sock-removing feet coming soon! :)

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Sunny Break {St Kilda}

Yesterday the rainy cold days of the previous weeks gave way to a brilliant blue sunshiny day, serving to remind us that sunny Spring is just around the corner. I do love the rain and the cool, yet cosy, indoor days during winter. Yet it is essential to get outdoors, to be reinvigorated and enjoy the brightness of the colours that sunshine brings.

With a shout of "Yay!" the girls quickly bounded over the hill to the sights they beheld. We had kept our destination a little secret in order to surprise them, and indeed it did. I thought I'd be exhausted standing around as they played, yet their excitement and the colours of the day served to invigorate me.

I was inspired by the beautiful blues, greens and yellows of sea, sky and foliage.
Hope you enjoy this little peak at our day.

The day was a very different one to the day of our last visit at the end of Summer 2009.

It was a welcomed rainy day, cool enough to venture outdoors, yet there was no colour evident being the end of a hot dry summer.

The sunshine of yesterday was just for one day however, last evening we fell asleep to the sound of rain again and woke to cloud cover, sprinkles and raindrops. Only intermittent periods of sunshine prevail today.

Friday, August 20, 2010


When one's tummy is growing
Along with a sweet little one inside,
One's level of exhaustion increases also,
Discomfort becomes common, experienced all day everyday,
Braxton Hicks contractions occur frequently...

A few little treats absolutely fill my heart anew.

:: roses from my Generous Gentleman waiting in our places
upon our arrival home late in the evening from Gymnastics ::

:: some Chiyogami paper from a sweet Japanese Shop
at the Adelaide Central Markets - Little Tokyo ::

We'll use these designs for a sweet pattern sent to us by my sister-in-law recently.
More to come soon.

Finally, we gather together as a family to enjoy lunch on a workday
Daddy, Mummy, our two little girls
at our favourite cafe
at the Central Markets.
A most precious treat for me!

Desiring to meet a new little one and become small once again,
Yet also knowing I have so much to do in preparation,
both mentally and physically in our home,
my brain is a bit mushy
my body is tired
along with my mind,
I wait, I rest, and take my time.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Shapes in the Peas in our Garden

How often do you take time to sit back and watch, simply admiring the beauty of a growing plant and observing and taking particular note of tiny details in one variety?

I needed some space today and fortunately the sun was shining so I ducked outside to observe what was happening in the garden as we grow nearer to Spring. The peas needed staking so I spent time with my girls achieving that goal while we also discovered the numerous shapes to be found in the peas.

:: star-shaped caps hooding each pod ::

:: round shapes connecting the cap to the pod ::

:: swirls and spirals, these being almost symmetrical ::

:: crescent shapes in the new growth ::

:: long straighter lines in the tendrils...

...and along the length of the pod ::

:: imagined spherical peas growing inside each pod ::

:: almost oval leaf shapes ::

:: swirls and spirals galore ::

It was tremendous fun playing with the shadows as they were cast on our fingertips and on the wall behind the peas. Such intricate little shapes and lines.

I am sure there are probably many more we did not notice. Oh the delight in Ess' eyes as she discovered all the shapes one by one, as she took time to look closer and take notice. Children do that so well don't they, when they stop...finally! Things just seem to pop out at them and speak their own language. One which often passes us by as adults.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Two Warm Woollen Hats Completed

Do you remember way back when I was making preparations for a warm woollen hat or two? Actually in finding this link I've discovered it was only just over a month ago, so I'm not doing too badly. They are now complete! My motivation has been the fact that this month is the last of winter. August is often our coldest month so I thought my lassies would enjoy being able to keep their heads warm. It appears to be working as once the hat is on, it doesn't seem to come off toooo easily. It really does keep little heads very cosy.

Ess particularly enjoys keeping her head warm. Although she does not like having her photo taken, as usual. Even when I try to snap a shot or two while she's playing the penny whistle.

The embroidery you saw me working on recently is now complete and very prettily adorning this pair of sweet bonnets.

Little Eee very much enjoyed playing model for me while I snapped away happily and we now have some delightful shots of a little sweetie wearing her new bonnet.

My result is quite different from the White Melton Hat in Carefree Clothes for Girls: 20 Patterns for Outdoor Frocks, Playdate Dresses, and More. It is much more romantic and feminine yet still worn by my girls in a very carefree manner.

Carefree Clothes for Girls: 20 Patterns for Outdoor Frocks, Playdate Dresses, and More

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Butterfly Life Cycle II

Our transformation of pasta into a butterfly

A model of the life cycle of a butterfly by our little Eee
(with a bit of help from Mum ;) esp. with the hot glue gun)
Don't you love her simple water colour painting and felt pen colouring!

A little pasta egg lay on a leaf,

a caterpillar hatched in the form of five Lumache Rigate threaded onto wool,

a beautiful, rainbow shell pasta chrysalis hung awaiting its transformation,

Farfalle make the most beautiful butterflies,
particularly when Ess puts her hand to them.

Ess turns everything she touches into a rainbow at the moment.
Look at the colours she used to paint her egg carton base,
each dutifully considered to be appropriate for the part of the life cycle it would contain.

Thankyou to Alecat at Serenades and Solace for your inspiration.
We love the way you turned pasta into butterflies.

Now we are considering purchasing a butterfly chrysalis kit to watch the process of metamorphosis and release some butterflies into our area.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Butterfly Life Cycle I

We have spent quite some time over the past week or so exploring and discovering the life cycle of the butterfly. Initially I was very drawn to the beautiful water colour of these balancing butterflies by childhood magic.

Out came our rarely used watercolours and a new dimension of being artistic was discovered. I really do prefer water colours for painting inside. I like that we have lots of dry paint to be mixed with the wet brush (which I can wet for dear little Eee keeping the jar of water out of her reach). It means there is so much less mess than having blobs of acrylic paints around the place. You can see Ess' work above with my own butterfly in the background.

We moved our bodies to music as I shared a little story of the hatching of a fuzzy wuzzy caterpillar creeping, creeping, who spun himself a blanket to sleep in, before he emerged transformed into a beautiful butterfly. The girls enjoyed dressing up in their homemade butterfly wings, a gift from my sister years ago, to flutter around the room in to a favourite song:
Flutter by, butterfly,
Flutter by up in the sky.

We then discovered the proboscis of a butterfly is used for drinking. A straw makes a great proboscis inserted through a water coloured flower atop a pretty flower paper cup filled with water. This is a great idea for encouraging children to drink water, my pair didn't stop drinking for ages through their butterfly proboscises.

Our resources included the diagrams of the lifecycle of a butterfly found at The Children's Butterfly Site along with the ever-loved classic book:

The Very Hungry Caterpillar (The Very Hungry Caterpillar)

The rainbow colours of Eric Carle's butterfly are very inspiring. All of Ess' work is coloured rainbow style. It is definitely her favourite technique at the moment.

We also created a model demonstrating the life cycle of a butterfly using something quite unexpected. We'll reveal that tomorrow.

Our New Treasure

Lilypie Maternity tickers


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