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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

DIY Garden Hose Holder

Add some charm to your yard by making your own garden hose holder. 


I thought this idea was brilliant when I pinned it almost 2 years ago. 

Then, I continued to think this was a brilliant idea when we found a post and equestrian hook over a year ago. 


The problem, this brilliant idea, post and hook continued getting moved to the bottom of the to do list FOR OVER A YEAR. 

In the meantime, countless barnwood bunnies, whales, foxes were made.


And, things like this would show up in my trunk. 


We finally came to an understanding, it was time to mark this brilliant idea off of our to do list before we could take in or on any other projects. 

So...painting began.  A helpful tip, when painting something that is going outside, invest in a pint of good outdoor paint.  A little will go along way.


Once the post was dry, the hook was put in place.  Everything was starting to have a refine feel, except for the new screws that secured the hook.


The new screws took on a more polished look with a little Novacan Black Patina.


 Applying a little patina with a paint brush, the screws aged right before our eyes.

 

 The post was then sunk into the ground...


And, the hose was FINALLY put into place.


2 years later, it's done! 

I can't wait to add something new to the to do list. 

Monday, August 25, 2014

First Grade

First grade; another baby step in the process of 'letting go'.

First grade.  A year of new firsts.  First time going to school ALL DAY long.


In kindergarten, Grace only went to school in the morning.  And, though, at the time, it was hard to let her go, the mornings went so quickly.  That smiling face was back home with me before lunch. 


First grade also means, the first time Grace gets to experience lunch and recess.  These are parts of her day that she looks forward to the most.  These are parts of the day, I worry about the most.  Those unstructured moments of the day, you hope will greet your child with kindness and happy memories.

 

Those are the moments I worry about her falling and scraping her knee and me not being there to give her a band-aid and a little tenderness. 


But, this brave little girl is ready, ready to take on the firsts.  Ready to fearlessly face new challenges.  Ready to make new friends. 

This brave little girl is ready to go...


Though I am sure she took my heart with her, in that back pack, there's no place else I'd rather my heart go. 

As I count down the hours until she returns home, I look around, feeling a bit less brave. 

Her absence is felt.


My heart aches a bit, until she comes home, filled with delightful tales about how she LOVED her first day of school.  She smiles as she tells me about the girls she sat with at lunch and played with at recess.  She laughs as she remembers funny moments from her day.

And, I hug her a bit tighter. 


So, even though I know there will be many more moments of learning how to let her go, I'll appreciate those moments I don't have to and I'll hold on that much tighter. 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

'Bear' With Me

Bear with me...


This momma bear is trying to enjoy the last 14 days of summer before sending her baby bear to school (ALL day!).


Enjoy what's left of your summer!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Day at a Butterfly House

We finally had an opportunity to visit a butterfly house.  Let me just say, if you haven't been to a butterfly house...stop what you are doing right now and google local butterfly houses.  This is such an amazing experience for kids of all ages as well as for adults. 


Grace and I were both captivated as we watched 100s of butterflies fly, feed and land around us.


In addition to seeing all these beautiful butterflies, we also learned some fun butterfly facts. 


Did you know, butterflies taste with their feet?


Another fun fact, butterflies need it to have about an 85 degree body temperature in order to fly.  Butterflies are cold blooded and can't regulate their temperatures so they require warm sunny days in order to fly. 


The day that we visited the butterfly house, it was a partially cloudy cooler day.  When the sun was shining into the screened in butterfly house, the butterflies happily flew around.  When a cloud past, they settled into the beautiful flowers flightless.


But the saddest butterfly fact, of all, the average life span of most butterflies is 2-4 weeks.


From the moment they emerge from their chrysalis their sole purposes in life are to eat and mate.


Knowing that they live such a short amount of time, makes me want to stop and appreciate their beauty even more.


The number one rule of any butterfly house is 'do not touch the butterflies'.  Of course, if they should decide to land on you, that is fine.  We saw butterflies land on a few people.  The butterflies were drawn to people wearing bright neon colored clothing and little girls with faux flowers in their hair.


Grace sat quietly and patiently, desperately hoping a butterfly would land on her.  Though no butterflies landed on her, one did flutter right past her face, wings flapping in her face.  Being *kissed* by a butterfly satisfied her enough that we were able to leave.  But, we'll be back, in our brightly colored shirts to try again.


If you want to see more of what we've been up to this summer, you can always follow me via Instagram as well.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Fairy Gardens

A few weeks ago, a local garden center had a week dedicated to celebrating fairies.  In our household, fairies are celebrated on a daily basis, so this festival was one we fully embraced. 


Part of the festival of fairies included discovering hidden fairy gardens nestled within each beautiful palette of flowers. 


My fairy lover was MESMERIZED. 


Each section we explored there was a touch of fairy whimsy waiting to be discovered and celebrated.


Something about these quaint miniaturized houses tucked in lush bits of greenery...


It makes you want to believe in the magic of fairies.


It makes you want to carefully watch...


and photograph...


hoping you'll glimpse a fairy.


Gardens are certainly beautiful places on their own...


but, when you add a bit of charm in miniature form...


gardens are transformed from beautiful...


to mesmerizing.


Our day ended with a hands on opportunity to create our own fairy garden.


With a few upgrades, we brought home our very own fairy garden.


Unfortunately, these fairies would rather dance on log slices and fish from sea shells than tend to the plants.  Our fairy garden plants are no longer lush and green but the fairies don't seem to care.  Since they obviously don't have a green thumb (much like myself), our fairy garden will soon be turned into a succulent fairy garden.

If you love all things fairies, make sure to check out how to entice fairies with a fun fairy soup recipe.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Fairy Soup

Fairy soup; a perfect interactive summer activity to ignite the imagination and creativity of any lover of fairies.


Fairy soup is an unstructured, no rules activity that gives kids the freedom to create unique concoctions and push the limits of their imagination...and, in the process, entice fairies to come and visit your garden.

 

Ingredients include anything that might attract a fairy.


We decided our fairies would be tempted by glitter, food coloring, sequence, beads, flower petals, glass gems and water.


I think the only thing truly not necessary, when making fairy soup...the kitchen sink.  Everything else is up for grabs.


Making fairy soup is even better when friends are involved...


And, better still while wearing fairy wings.


 The fairy soups we made took almost two hours to perfect.  *Moms, that is two hours of pure bliss for you...no, 'mom, can you get me this', 'mom, can we do something else', 'mom, I'm bored'.  Basically, fairy soup is my new favorite recipe!


When the girls' fairy soup was perfectly created, it was then doled out in bowls and containers and placed around our garden. 

The girls patiently waited, while munching on Goldfish crackers and then magically...this happened. 


I think our recipe was a success.

Happy Houligan's inspired this water sensory play activity.
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