October 9, 2012 § Leave a comment

And always the children are growing. Pants and a shirt, $3 each. Good brands, good colors, ever in longer sizes.

And bitty Captain America undies. the potty training time is getting closer. $.69.

Ruler games

September 14, 2012 § Leave a comment

Thrifted: such pretty old and sturdy rulers. $.79. Our school always needs these.


Flea market finds

August 16, 2012 § Leave a comment



For my second trip to Mile High this summer, I got a blissful few hours of solitude and a selection of fun finds. A few more wooden hangers for the closet. $2. Some day I will have enough to get rid of the plastic ones.

A dollar fan.  How to bring joy to a 6 year old in two seconds flat.

$1 for this set of stamps. Still in the $16 packaging. Endlessly useful for school and creative activities.

Keens, always the keens. Little ones for the little one. $4.

We have been on the lookout for trains. The 4 year old turns five soon and this will be his gift. This box is huge! And very full of train building fun for years to come. $20.

And 3 vintage Fisher Price play stages. I had these. I loved these! $13. The car elevator still goes up and the school bell still rings. Now I’m in the market for the little cars and people.

Balance bike- product recommend

August 14, 2012 § Leave a comment

My oldest children are 6 and 5. They are working on using a 2 wheeler, but mostly just fall over. We got this balance bike through kids Woot. (Our brand is Treehaus, but any balance bike is probably good.)  And every minute for the last week the kids are riding it. The oldest has gotten the hang of the balance and can now ride the two wheeler! The thing they like best about it is they are allowed to ride it inside. It has rubber handles and no pedals to gouge things. It is adjustable and so fun to zoom around.

In recent weeks

August 13, 2012 § Leave a comment

Here are some bits we have thrifted. Uniform pants, $2.

Keens, I snap them up when I see them. If we can’t use them I’ll pass them on. Such good versatility and quality.

A paper making kit. $2. A really fun school or busy activity.

Bunting in the round

August 6, 2012 § 1 Comment

I added color to the teepee over the weekend. These pole caps make me happy!

This was a trial error sewing project. I started with a bunting template, made it larger and sewed a sample. Adjusted and fitted until I like the look. I used fabrics I had.

A tip-top topper!

See the teepees here and here.



Pinterest project- drawstring lego mats

July 6, 2012 § Leave a comment

Legos are one of my favorite toys, and our family spends hours playing with them. The lego mat is an easy way to keep them corralled. It is both storage and play surface and makes clean up easy. It prevent bruises from stepping on legos and keeps the baby from eating stray blocks. I have made two. The first one is made from vintage striped fabric and muslin and is about 54 inches wide, the width of the muslin. The drawstring is in a casing between the layers

This second one I made bigger, out of two thrifted sheets, and the drawcord just goes through grommets from back to front of the mat. If you are thinking of making one,  I like the bigger grommets of the second mat, but the internal casing for the cord of the first mat.

Road trip- Why I love to travel with my kids

May 31, 2012 § 4 Comments

Adaptability! It very high on my list of parenting goals to teach. Long drives, scads of new people, pallet beds, and varied food. They are learning; adapt or be miserable. Your day is determined by your attitude.

In this stage of life all the things we see are amazing.  All the words I say, they believe them. All the things they learn are soaked into their brains with delight . I am the most wonderful person in their world. This trip is a gift of time to feed their minds and hear their hearts and cement memories.

I get hours of talking, singing, answering questions. My sometimes divided attention is still more focused now than at home with the calls of cleaning and cooking. We discuss everything and nothing.

In all the driving and the visiting I get to teach skills. Map reading, license plate games, how to be a blessing and not a burden to hosts, sign reading, and story-telling.

As the only parent for a time, I’m on duty. Every hour. I can’t grouse to Ed about the children’s behavior, so I just deal with it, and we’re all happy. Another tiny carving off of self. My character is built when I recognize this as a time to cherish, and not to complain.

Flowers and photo courtesy of my children.


Road trip- what it looks like

May 27, 2012 § 3 Comments

We are 2400 miles into our longest road trip yet. Across the US and back, just Mama and three little ones, enjoying all the wonderful people we know, and loving on this great wide country. 16 overnights with friends and family so far, each a delight and a treasured memory. We have a blessed and giving family of welcomers, spread out geographically, but close by the grace of God.  We have stores of friends and relatives who set us up, feed us, talk for hours, enjoy shared memories and send us on our way refreshed, happy, and thankful.  Our goal is Daddy, the beloved.  He’s working for a time away from us and we will join up with him in a week for needed togetherness. And then many more miles back home, with more friends to see. It has been an amazing trip and I’ll be sharing more in days to come.

For starters, here is the gear we tote. A very adequate minimum, perfectly suiting the four of us. We took the commuter car instead of the big family one; it’s a diesel miracle of gas efficiency, keeping costs very reasonable.

On the top: purse, bag of sewing, camera and kindle, address book, etc, and rolled duvet.

From left to right: green tote with computer, cords, school books, wipes, candy, Bible, cords, headlamps, and a beading activity. Tackle box first aid kit. Peapod baby sleep tent. Picnic mat for all the grassy roadside lunches. 2 sleeping pads. Empty backpack for the hikes and the all-important atlas. Mama’s duffle topped by a stack of bedding, enough for all of us in a pinch. And the versatile towels, good for mattresses,  blankets and swimming. A purple activity backpack. Blue bucket with snacks, frappuccino supplies, and baby food. The most important section; the audio books.  A small duffle for each child and the best stuffable versatile running shoes. Boys activity bag and a crate of hostess gifts. And that is it! 6 more weeks my friends.

Things you can’t see: a coat for me, a large pack of diapers for the baby, 3 car seats, plenty of trash bags, a small empty cooler (shouldn’t have brought that, wasted space), and a pile of skipping rocks the kids keep adding to until we find a suitable pond. I love Lesportsac. And I’d save my Nalgene with lightning bug lid in a fire.

And always the clothes

May 10, 2012 § Leave a comment

For the little one this time, all like new, shirt $1.49, shorts $1, Stride Rite shoes $1.49, and .99 kerchief. We love our bandanas, for all kinds of uses. I’m thankful for the blessings of other’s largess.

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