Sunday, November 29, 2009

Recent occurences

Obviously we had Thanksgiving a few day ago, which will be a separate post, but I just thought I'd do a little update of other things that have been going on.

A few weeks ago, my friend Liz offered to take some photos of the children. She has a nice camera and has been taking a photography course, so she said it would be good practice. It was such a kind offer, and I decided to go for it. We arrived at her house at the agreed time, and she began by taking a few pictures of Lainey. Well, that turned out to be the easy part, because Luke just would NOT cooperate. First he cried, then he got a runny nose. The he wanted to play with various different toys. We did manage to get a couple of half decent ones, but nothing like a smile from him. Never work with kids or animals, I tell ya.

So, I decided to try taking some at home, in his 'natural habitat', if you will. And some outside. And it soon became clear why I am not a photographer...

So I ended up going with one of Liz's pictures for our Christmas cards. She did a wonderful job with the photography- it was the model causing problems!
A few weeks ago, Trev and I attended our very first football (American football, that is) game. We watched Utah State get completely thrashed by Boise State. To be fair to USU, Boise are the 6th ranking team in the country. I think the final score was something like 52-21.
Even though it was quite cold, we had lots of fun, and decided to try to attend several games next season.
Here's Trev with his brother Caleb

And here's us, this was towards the beginning when the score was even so we were still in a good mood.

Well, that's some of what we've been doing in the last few weeks. Only a few more weeks until Christmas, this year is rolling by!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I had heard quite a few good things about, so I decided to give it a try. I edited a photo I had taken of Lainey, as seen below.



I was really pleased with it, considering I only spent about 10 minutes on the site. It's a very user-friendly site, many of the features are free (I used only free features) You can get more features if you upgrade, I'm not sure how much that costs. One day we'll have Photoshop, but
at the moment, free is good!
One of the best things about is that I was able to upload a photo very quickly, edit it, and save it to my computer, without registering or anything. So easy!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Two beautiful kids + an autumn day = recipe for perfection :-)

I really just want to do a post about my babies just for the sake of it. 'Cos, you know, I love 'em. I spend so much time with these two and yet I cannot get enough of them. When Luke's nap runs a bit longer, as it sometimes does, I seriously miss him. And Lainey- I could just cuddle her all day long!

They're pretty much my shadows, and I love it that way. It's a challenge sometimes, like when Luke wants to be my shadow in the kitchen, grabbing everything the moment I put it down. But as I try to be the mother they deserve, I realise that they are my teachers. In developing the qualities that I need to be a good parent, I'm becoming more like the person I want to be. I am nowhere near the end yet, and I am lacking in so much, but I pray that I will allow myself to be shaped into a more patient, loving, happy and beautiful figure.

A little about Luke :-

Luke is a typical, energetic, happy toddler of almost two years old. He is helpful and so much fun to be around. He loves to be outside, swinging, sliding, climbing and collecting sticks and rocks. He is also a book-lover and tends to gravitate towards those with animals and vehicles. Alarmingly, he has recently developed a love for knives and scissors, but he's usually obedient when we ask him to put them back.

He is learning new words all the time. The most frequently said words at the moment are- dinosaur, thank you, cracker, pig, egg, hello, and, of course, car. Luke is a daddy's boy. He is a joy.

Now, Lainey :-

Lainey is just a sweetheart, there's no other word for it. She's a happy little thing who is always ready with a smile. She's quite a mama's girl, which I love! She loves to watch what Luke is up to and often tries to join in.

She has mastered the art of speed-crawling, and loves to pull up on the furniture and stand. She seems to be quite brave and has been toughened up by Luke's endless tormenting.

She still loves her bottle and pretty much only her bottle. She eats teeny amounts of baby food but she really loves her milk. I'm going to have to work with her on that! Oh how I love her!

I know I'm biased, but I really do feel so lucky to be the mum of these two munchkins.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Harvest dress

This girl could look cute in anything! This dress didn't turn out as nice as I thought, but Lainey pulls it off somehow. I used the same pattern as last time (the black, pink and green one).

Friday, November 6, 2009

We remembered!

You might remember the report of our Guy Fawkes celebrations last year. Here's year two of the tradition...

The glow sticks were a huge hit with the two kids (three if you include Trev) haha. hem...
They waved them around and made designs on the floor with them, and Luke even managed to use the little connectors to join them together. (Tip for all parents- glow sticks are really inexpensive, and make a fun activity.) I don't know what I'm going to do when my kids are too old to be fascinated by these things. Hopefully by then we'll live in a state/country that allows fireworks year-round!

Also, can I just say that photographing these things is addictive! It's so fun to put the camera on night mode and see what kind of effects you get.

And although halloween was a few days ago now, there were still some ghosts lurking around. Can you spot them?

Yes our bonfire night celebrations are a little pathetic, but we try! Happy Guy Fawkes Day :-)

Saturday, October 31, 2009


It's halloween again! It seems like it's only been a few weeks since last halloween.

The costumes this year were based on a Pinocchio theme, as you can see. I really loved how the costumes turned out, but I have to admit that it was a lot of effort, and probably not really worth it, if I'm honest. Luke had a meltdown when I was putting the face paint on his hair, and I almost thought we would never get out of the house. However, the kids looked adorable, and we had fun at the MASA carnival.

Luke enjoying his popcorn. He just enjoyed watching what was going on and joining in with the games (including pumpkin bowling, cake walk, fishing pond, and colouring)

Many people thought Lainey was a skunk, which I can completely understand, because I forgot to add a tail. Oh well. If they could just put two and two together they'd realise that she was Figaro.

Unfortunately, Trev was working, so he couldn't come with us (what a surprise!) but we have some fun stuff lined up for the coming holidays, so it's okay.
By the way, you can really tell winter is on it's way. We had a nice snow storm last week and it's really quite chilly. But not so chilly that it keeps us inside- we still get out to play once or twice a day. You have to when you live in a little apartment, unless you want to go bald early!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

bonkers about conkers!

Have you ever collected conkers? Or better still, had a conker fight? Conkers are the fruit of a horse-chestnut tree, and are one of my favourite autumn traditions.

We always used to go gathering them with dad. He would throw sticks to knock them out of the tree, and the kids would gather them up. Apparently nobody does this in America, because the tree I went to had hundreds of conkers, already open, on the ground! So I didn't even have to lift a finger- Luke did all the work (and loved every minute of it)

I really want to have a fight, but I keep getting my needle stuck in the conker, so I haven't got it threaded yet. But until I do, I can enjoy the sight of these shiny beauties in my home, reminding me of my childhood.
On another's the apron I made for my Trev's mom for her birthday. Not a great photo, I know.

And finally, just because I can't resist. And who could resist those cheeks?!

The dress turned out ten times better than expected. If only she'd keep the headband on...

Friday, October 16, 2009

autumn fun, and hats.

Autumn is so beautiful. I've always loved it. I think I appreciate it even more now that it's pretty much the only time of year that the temperature is just right for being outside.

Yesterday we decided to make the most of a lovely, sunny afternoon, by getting out and enjoying a walk in the Logan Canyon. We originally planned to do an easy stroll along the riverside, but changed our minds and went for a more challenging hike up to the wind cave. It's a cool kind of rock arch, quite high up. Trev's friend Rajendra came with us, and we talked about the differences between American and Indian cultures. It was lovely.

Here we are near the beginning of the 2 mile trail.

Rajendra carried Luke for quite a bit of the way. He needed something to slow him down- his great long legs meant that one of his strides matched about 5 of ours (mine)

I carried Lainey for most of the way, but near the top, I just got so tired...I think you could barely even tell I was Trev took over for a while.

We made it! And yes I am a little red in the face. So out of shape. But we enjoyed gorgeous scenery from the top and were refreshed by a cool wind.

Look at these colours. Just beautiful. I just love the colour combinations that nature comes up with!

Okay, now let me just promise that I am not going to be a crazy hat lady who posts pictures of her hats every day. Just one last time, though... here are a few of my finished pieces.

This one is for a friend's baby. I used anew pattern and the sizing was off so the one pictured didn't fit the (week old) baby. I am making the next size up for her.

Just experimenting with colour here- what do you think? Okay, or too....clashy?

And this last one is extra warm because the yarn is a wool blend (but it's soft not itchy)

That's it for hats for a while. On to other things from my ever-growing list of stuff to try. How will I ever find time to try everything?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

She is a girl, after all...

I've started to get so excited about dressing Lainey up. I'm sure you've been looking at my pictures of her and thinking 'why does Sian dress her so plain?' or 'Why does it seem like she's always dressed as a boy?' I think it's taken a while for me to realize that you can really have fun with a girl, and there are so many cute clothes and fabrics out there. Like this funky fabric that I found on clearance a while ago. I think it was under 2 dollars for about 3/4 yard.

I decided to make a dress, since that's what Lainey is lacking at the moment.

And then I made a matching hairclip, to go on her headband. I love how the clip turned out! It really echoes the pattern on the fabric. I found out how to make the flowers using this tutorial.

The pattern is Simplicity 4243. It was quite easy to make, the trickiest bit was applying the binding to the armholes. Apart from that it was simple. I have another one of these dresses cut out and ready to go, in a different fabric.
Girls really are fun!