There's a project I've been thinking about over the summer and I've decided I'm going to have a go at it. But first I need your help! I would greatly appreciate your feedback in a little survey I whipped up to learn a little more about you and your crafty needs. It'll take less than five minutes of your time and will greatly help me in figuring the direction I go, plus you'll get a little hint in the survey about the project I have in mind! You can find the survey here--thanks for taking the time to answer my questions!
My husband has been doing more and more projects with Skyler out in his shop lately, and after finding Handy Dad by Todd Davis at the library, they were full of ideas.
Like this longboard. Skyler used to have a skateboard that he bought at a garage sale a while back. Of course it broke soon after, but we saved the wheels with the idea of buying a new board. But why not make one, instead?
The book calls for some super-fancy kind of wood to make a super-strong board, but Chris just used what was on hand. Skyler enjoyed sanding it down once it was cut, Chris added the wheels, and voilà, longboard complete.
And here's the end result. Skyler was originally going to paint it up (and maybe he still will) but he was too eager to start using it.
Of course this was several weeks ago, and the longboard already gets a little less attention now, but Skyler sure was proud of making something with his dad.
And I was proud of my guys for being so creative (and thrifty, of course)!
As I think most of us usually do, I had a pretty ambitious to do wish-list for this summer. Of course I didn't get everything checked off, but here's how I faired:
Take the kids to the movie theater. We weren't successful with this one, but hey, I sure don't miss not spending the money.
Make a reading tent. Another year gone by without checking this off my summer list. Maybe the third time will be the charm?
Bake cookies with the kids. Nope, not this one, either. I did mix up some homemade play dough with the kids this afternoon, though.
Make popsicles. Nada.
It's funny how summer seems to be so long and short at the same time. Regardless, it's certainly been filled with joy and laughter and sunshine (and a lot of sweat to go along). Now here's for a little rain to finally come our way!
Skyler turned eight on Saturday. And although we celebrated with friends and family the week before, we forgot the candles (we had the party at a local pool). So we had to have something with candles for his big day.
I whipped together a little key-lime pie (I cheated with a store-bought crust). Skyler said it was the best key-lime pie ever, and the other two begged me to make the same for them for their birthdays.
It's fun to have big celebrations, but the small one-on-one moments can make a child feel even more loved.
With school starting next week, we had one last chance to make a trip to the coast earlier this week. It didn't quite turn out completely as planned (the van ended up needing a two-hour trip to the shop). Despite being such a long day, we had a great time...
...competing for the largest walking stick (that Liam is always trying to out-win his big brother)...
...and testing the waters for the first time.
I haven't completed everything on my summer wish-list, but spending time with family definitely outweighs some of the other undone to-dos.
How are you winding down your summer season?
One thing that helps keep me sane (that's a relative term, right?) in the midst of motherhood, is looking back on our life as a family and seeing how far we've come. Not that motherhood is just something to be survived (although some days it definitely seems like it), but it is important to recognize growth. Looking back helps me to appreciate that the days don't last. It strengthens me in knowing that the tough times pass, and helps me look forward to all the things we still have in store. So today I thought I'd share a little looking back.
This time last year...
these two little sisters were just getting to know each other.
There aren't quite so many peaceful moments as these anymore...
but there's still as much love and trust!
How about you? What was happening in your life this time last year?
Remember our anniversary staycation? Well we stopped by this antique mall in downtown (San Antonio) before heading back home. It was three-stories full of old stuff. When we were paying the meter for the car my husband thought we wouldn't need to pay for more than an hour, but I knew better. Here are a few of the things I enjoyed while we were there:
We celebrated Amelia's first birthday over the weekend. With her being the last baby I've definitely had feelings of life passing by quickly. Her little toes will only be little for so long. Watching our children grow has been such a great gift. (Don't get me wrong, we definitely have our not-so-great moments--this is just me being thankful and grateful out loud.)
Friends and family joined us for a fun little party at our home. I bought bouncy balls and made bubbles, which I'm not sure they turned out very bubbly, but everyone seemed to have a wonderful time.
Some of the balls ended up in the bubble tub (they actually made great wands).
Find the how-to on these super-easy streamers here.
I made two larger cakes (I used some great recipes for the cake and frosting in a recent issue of Real Simple), and one little one for Amelia. Everyone gobbled them up and enjoyed them.
Especially the birthday girl.
And I got to use my thrift store party plates (which my wonderful husband washed up for me!).
I almost made it a small little family party, but after thinking about how quickly it goes by I knew I'd regret not throwing one of our jam-packed Johnson parties. Thanks to all our friends and family who helped us celebrate--from near and far--we're grateful to have so many wonderful people in Amelia's life.
I'm sure I'll always be a little reluctant to say goodbye to all the little firsts as the kids get older. We're already almost out of the baby years! I just hope to find peace as my little birds come closer and closer to learning to fly, and cherish each moment while they still find rest under my wing.
How do you cherish your children? What are your favorite childhood birthday memories? (Mine is playing music-games to the Beach Boys.)