Saturday, March 31, 2012

Quote of the Day

"My name isn't Genevieve.  It's angry beast.  Donut eating angry beast.  I'm serious."

Man Caves and Chicken Shit

"I'm bored" was a taboo declaration when I was growing up.  If we dared go there my mom had the perfect retort - "then go shovel out the chicken coop!"  Today, Drew and I started going down the slippery slope of no motivation with a dash of antsy.  There's plenty of shoveling chicken shit equivalent activities we could check off our to do list - but we just can't seem to kick it into gear. 

Marguerite and I did manage to shuffle over to the Smith's garage and scope out their seed supply:

I don't know Wes, it's hard to accept your garage as a man cave with that cute little seed shelf and an Eames Chair placed at an angle in front of a vintage wood stove.  Just saying, it's pretty dandy in there.  Oh, and thanks for the seeds.

Once whining, tired Marguerite gave up the ghost for her afternoon nap I FINALLY packed up the box of her hand-me-downs to be sent to my niece Flora:

This is the second box of clothes I've sent off and I still felt that little pang that comes from the line in the sand that's been drawn declaring her to be our last baby.  Two happy healthy girls is all I need.  It's sharing life with a tiny baby that I'll miss.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Serious about Playdough

Did I make this play dough myself?  No I did not.  But don't judge me for buying the stuff.  I mean, check out these skills:

Stat of the Day

Number of two-handed activities I can do with one hand now that I have a minimum of one, sometimes two, small humans attached to me:  7

1.  peel orange
2.  blow nose
3.  butter toast
4.  type
5.  button pants
6.  fold laundry
7.  load dishwasher


Full disclosure.  Those pink polk-a-dot chucks I blogged about earlier are mine, not Genevieve's:

I had to come clean!

Genevieve had preschool this morning, so Marguerite and I tried out the big no morning nap experiment to see how things would go.  We hit Goodwill and scored all of these terracotta pots to transplant succulents and lavender into for the courtyard garden I'm planning:

We had enough endurance left in us after that to get a few groceries, and just couldn't pass up a 3 for 1 deal off the seed wrack:

I'm happy to report that Marguerite ate lunch and zonked out at 12:30 with no protest.  Maybe this nap time transition isn't so bad.  I'm okay with trading my morning ritual of domestic drudgery in for errand running with only one kiddo. 

I'm feeling well stocked for a rainy weekend of transplanting and cooking.  Sounds alright to me.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Rain Check

I bagged my plan to leave the home front today and had a rainy day of extreme coziness instead. 

Genevieve and I have a night time ritual of snuggling in her bed and telling each other the best parts about our day.  Tonight, this is what she whispered in my ear,  "Baking chocolate chip cookies with you.  Cookie dough.  Cookie dough.  Chocolate chip.  Chocolate chip.  Brown sugar lump.  More cookie dough.  Two cookies!" 

Her second best part about the day was playing in Marguerite's crib:

For the second consecutive day Marguerite did not take her afternoon nap.  This may be the end of a two nap a day era.  Sigh.

After screaming "Mama!  Mama!"  and then switching to "G!  G!" for 20 minutes instead of going to sleep G pleaded to go upstairs to her.  When I followed a few minutes later Marguerite was somehow missing her shirt and both girls were squealing with giggles, jumping in her crib. 

The best part about my day was not having to drag my PMS self anywhere I didn't want to be today.  The second best part about my day is that Marguerite is finally asleep with brown bear:


Last time we went to town to run errands I pushed the girls by an hour too far over their threshold of happiness.  Marguerite was screaming and wailing from the shopping cart and repeatedly head butting the metal handle.  I picked up the pace through the grocery store aisles and worked up a stress and hustle related lather.

Genevieve caught my eye from the heap of groceries surrounding her and said, "Mom.  You're going too fast.  Sister just needs to nurse.  Let's find the furniture area."  Brilliant!  I slalomed my way through the crowd, found a comfy couch and settled in while Genevieve tested out the frilly pink bed display nearby.  Smarter not harder.  Thanks G.

In that same mad dash shopping excursion G talked me in to this impulse buy.  I certainly did second guess my purchase when I got home, but now I sort of love them:

It's pouring rain.  A makeover kind of morning:

Then to the grocery store again after lunch with hopefully smoother sailing.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Plein Air

This afternoon the air was heavy and warm and smelled like the rain that was soon to be.  The girls flung the upstairs door open after naps and got busy hauling what they needed onto the deck for some plein air painting and pillow flopping. 

They played so well together I hardly recognized them as my own.  I think Genevieve learned a lot from her cousin Cecilia during their visit - she's suddenly sweet and loving to her baby sister and seems to show real concern for her well being.  This is refreshing.  I hope it sticks.

Here's their impromptu el fresco play room:

I enjoyed the birds eye view of my garden, our glorious view of Samish Bay, and the clicking melody of the ducks as they worked over the slough mud at low tide:

I also had a twinge of loneliness for friends who I don't see enough of.  This pile of quilts and blankets and "Steve" randomly selected and dragged outside by the girls were all made for them by people outside of our tiny domestic sphere who love them:

Good thing my friend Alyson is coming for a visit tomorrow afternoon for a visit to mix it up a bit! 

Marguerite (not Margarita) Mornings

Marguertie gets SO excited to go into Genevieve's preschool and play for a bit while her big sister gets settled in.  Then, when we get home, she gets SO sad when she realized that G isn't there too.

"G?"  she asks repeatedly with her little palms raised in the air and a big question mark on her face:

This is typically followed by a big sad cry with forehead to the floor and bum in the air.  Once we make it through this ritual of the missing G she collects herself and gets a little twinkle in her eye that says, "G is at school and I have mama, books, and toys all to myself!"  and that's when it gets fun.

Then she settles into G's big girl bed for snuggle time before her nap:

Once all is quiet on the Vallee front I go downstairs and drink a margarita - just kidding!  Coffee.  If I'm lucky I get a kid free phone visit in with my mama, a solo shower, and a few mouse clicks. 

Monday, March 26, 2012

So Fresh and So Clean

Please enjoy the following cleaning series.  No harsh chemicals were used in the making of this shoot, child labor laws only slightly violated, and end result is a sparkling clean bathroom vanity:

Thanks G!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Delegating and Quiet

Earlier today I deemed this a gardening day.  It sort of turned out that way - but was more a demonstration of my managerial and delegation skills alive and well.  Here's the majority of the gardening I did today:

I haven't turned into a man, that's Drew.  He's a willing and capable digger of holes, that which I am not.  I did get my ground cover weeded which is usually a nightmare - but it went fairly smooth this year.  I'm feeling ahead of the game.  We'll see how long that lasts.

The girls and I took a walk towards the dike.  I was feeling all sentimental while pushing the sisters in the double stroller, looking up at the spot on Blanchard Mountain where Drew and I got married.  I tried to capture my capsule of happiness in a photo.  Unfortunately the girls were not feeling it.  They protested in unison and abruptly marked our turn around spot:

The train wreck continued when we got home.  I need to start laying down the law with these girls when it comes to stripping off outerwear and leaving it all over the middle of the floor.  "G, I need you to pick up your fleece and boots" I say every time.  Today her response was, "No.  I'm too busy taking care of Gibby.  You can do it if you want mom." 

"Gibby" is Gibson the cat that Genevieve has deemed her baby.  Here they are in their spot:

The girls are tucked in after a late dinner (I came close to losing my battle with pie crust for the chicken pot pie I made.  Dough has been my nemesis today) and I'm posting from the gallery desk with a glass of wine and relative silence.

Wishing you all peace and quiet this fine evening!

Fresh Grass, Fox Heads and Biscuits

Drew was able to mow the lawn yesterday afternoon for the first time this year and it launched us into a garden planning frenzy that surely will result in planting a garden that is more than we can handle - but we're going for it anyway!

Here's the vegetable garden blank slate.  Consider this photo a before:

And here's more of that freshly mowed grass:

We created this covered sitting area last summer.  This is where my parents sit and shuck their oysters and drink beer after intensive grandparenting.  I'm thinking about adding some containers here this summer.  What do you think I should plant them with?:

Genevieve really wanted to visit Todd Horton in his art studio above the woodshop - well, that's what she said her motivation was, but really she just wanted to visit his creepy fox head:

We baked heart shapes biscuits to go with breakfast this morning.  You would think by their shape that they are full of love and harmony.  In reality they are full of whining 3 year old, tired crying 1 year old at my knee, impatient and under-caffeinated mama, and hungry/impatient daddy.  After our rocky start I deem today a garden day and NOT a kitchen day:

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Whipped Cream and Boys

No, Matt Phillips, I'm not talking about sex, drugs or rock and roll on my blog.  And no, Andrew Vallee, I'm not going to slip in any cleavage shots either.   If boobs are going to be mentioned at all here it will surely involve a detailed account of lactation. 

Back off boys, you're not my demographic.  This blog is sacred space where it's all butterflies and unicorns and fairies and hot chocolate with whipped cream.  Aren't the interwebs big enough for all of our interests?? 

G and I made hot chocolate while Marguerite napped.  We need an excuse to eat a huge amount of freshly whipped cream once in a while:

Genevieve has been wearing this for most of the day:

And Marguerite is broadening her horizons a bit and let me put a clippy in: