Sunday, January 27, 2013

Silence Unbroken

I've been silent on the blogging front recently. Is it silly that I find it too much "work" to sit down, upload pictures and then write about stuff? The things in front of me - the dishes, a sewing project, the mountain of laundry sitting on the chair in our bedroom, a braided rug that's taking me forever to finish, cooking a meal, etc - are what get first dibs (after kids, of course, can't forget about them.). I also don't use this as my spill-all outlet for my life. So some things that others might write about, I save for my pen and paper journal. Those are the real goods, but not for the public domain. :)

I also question the value of posting my crafts and projects. Don't get me wrong, I really like reading about and seeing what others are doing because I get great ideas or tips, but I find myself questioning the worth of sitting myself down to post my projects when I could be working on other projects or just doing what needs to be done. Or reading a book. Or exercising. Or watching Downton Abbey. I save so many things for nap time or after the kids are in bed and it just gets swept aside.

But Dan is at work right now, it's Sunday night so the laundry can wait, the kids are sleeping, Downton Abbey is over for this week (and it's a sad one, let me tell you), I had a nap this afternoon and don't feel tired yet, and I realized I can post about multiple things with the same photos. Perfect. I do like being efficient although I can't claim that skill in many other areas of life.

Anyway, Dan and I actually spent the better part of 4 days and 3 nights away, on our own while our kids hung out with our parents. This was a first for us. We hadn't been away alone since Edwin came along. So it was quite exciting. Dan had a conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico and when it was being planned I flippantly  (but not really flippantly) said he could go if I could come along. And that's just what we did. So here area few pictures to prove we were there. Now that we're back in cold northeast, balmy Puerto Rico seems like a dream.

Below you'll see us in old San Juan. Behind us is an old fort (el Morro). Old San Juan has a wall around most of it. It's a charming city that reminds me of an old European city. It's over 400 years old. We ate so much good Puerto Rican food while there. I'm hoping to find some recipes and make some here at home.

You'll also see two of my projects in this picture and the one below. I bought some knit fabric a while back (for no reason other than it was a cheap remnant and feels so soft), found a tutorial and free pattern online and so I made a simple skirt. I think it's one I'll wear a lot this summer. It's as comfortable as my yoga pants and will be so much cooler. I also made a maxi skirt using the same pattern but different fabric. Also incredibly comfortable. I don't have a closer picture but you can get an idea of what it's like from the website I got it from. Just a sewing side note: the knit fabric I used is pretty thin, so I followed the pattern creator's advice and cut the waist band on the small side (because thinner knit fabric stretches more) and cut the skirt pieces larger (because a thinner fabric will cling more. It turned out great.

Project 2 is the shoulder bag. It's reversible, but I don't have a picture of it the other way around. The paisley fabric is what is on the inside. I carried this bag on the plane and used it while walking around town in San Juan. The only down side I discovered is that the solid pink fabric bled some color onto my clothes. I did prewash the fabric, but perhaps I should've washed it at least one more time before using it. I got the pattern from this site but tweaked it. I widened the bag and slightly lengthened the straps. Then I put two tucks on each side so that the top is narrower than the bottom. I also added some interior and exterior pockets.

A street in Old San Juan. Many of them are cobblestones, but this one below happens to be paved.

A sunrise I didn't see because I chose to sleep in when I had the chance!


And just to prove I spent some time on the beach. Reading "7" by Jen Hatmaker. Pretty ironic to be reading that book while on a mini vacation in the Caribbean. 

A new sun hat.

The beach we sat on the morning before we flew back home.

 And I think that's all I'm going to take time for tonight.
Now you know a little about what's been happening around here.

Friday, January 11, 2013

One Year

This girl turned a year old a couple weeks ago, and I can hardly believe that her first year has gone by so quickly. What would I like you to know about Elena?

She's a busy girl. She's determined. And when she decides to do something, she does it. I'd say she knows her mind. Nursing is an example of that. She just up and quit a short time before her birthday. It's as if one day, she just decided that she was done. One day she wanted to nurse, the next day, not at all.

She's crawling everywhere but doesn't show much interest in walking. I'm figuring she'll start walking whenever she decides to, and until then, she's happy to zip around on hands and knees. She has no problem climbing, and if the stairs are open, she makes a beeline for them. I've also found her on top of the kids' table and the coffee table.

She's so aware of what's going on around her and doesn't hesitate to ask for what she wants. And when she crawls over to me and hold her hands up to me (her way of saying "pick me up"), it's basically impossible for me to not pick her up.

Elena freely gives me kisses and snuggles and is nice and cuddly. She's waving  and saying "bye" when Dan goes to work or when we leave her favorite stuffed animal in her crib. She's generally a cheerful, happy girl who occasionally throws in a temper tantrum just to let us know she's really serious about what she doesn't like.

I am so thankful she's part of our family.