February 25, 2010

Recent Redos

I'm so excited! I actually made some time in the last few days to do some simple alterations in clothes that otherwise never got worn.

I had a big brown dress that I wore preggo a couple of times. Made out of soft fabric? Yay! Giant and sack-like? Boo! Easy fix? Cut a foot off the bottom, sew in a channel, and run a wide elastic through it:

brown shirt from baggy dress

Now it's a totally wearable tunic!

A while ago, Nancy gave me a beautiful flecked red coat from Anthropologie (oh to have infinite money and only ever shop there!). I loved it, loved it, loved it - but it was a bit long for my frame. Finally, I got up the nerve to chop about a foot off the bottom. Now it's a fun car coat length:

shortened red coat

Now I'm trying to figure out what to do with the extra fabric. I used a piece of the dress and a little piece of leather trim to make myself this hat:

brown hat from baggy dress

It's not too tight, so it won't mush my hair when I wear it. Which is good, because I have the kind of hair that quickly takes on the shape of whatever I put on my head.

Whee! New clothes!

February 23, 2010

I'm a Guest...

...On MADE blog!

Dana is having a really great string of posts this month, all about crafting for boys. And - and! there's more! - each of the posts features a tutorial for making some kind of cool thing for all the boy kiddos out there.

Today, the guest poster is yours truly. Check it out!

February 20, 2010

9 months in, 9 months out

Happy three quarters of a year, little Jakey baby!

(Ok, mom, turn off the camera already.)

More Art with Lara

Hi all. Mr. 42 here.
First, I was remiss in not posting about my delicious and awesome birthday - I got great art, and great cupcakes - the icing taste-tester did a great job.

Second, though, I have to show off my new favorite art activity with Lara: "I draw on one side, you draw on the other." Lara picks (read: dictates and demands without room for discussion or compromise) a subject and color, and I draw it first. Then she draws it on her side of the paper. It's so fun to see what she does!

We just watched "Ice Age 2: The Meltdown" for the first time. So today Lara said we were drawing the mammoth and Sid the Sloth.

I'm sure you all know what mammoths look like; here's Sid:

Here's our Mammoth, and our Sloth:

(Lara made sure we had eyebrows - that was a big omission on my part, at first). Isn't her little sloth the cutest?

February 19, 2010

Lowes Kids Projects

Have you guys heard about the Build and Grow program at Lowes? Me neither, until this past weekend. Apparently, every other Saturday, kids can come to Lowes at ten in the morning and do a woodworking project of some sort - for free! Having checked it out, I can tell you that it's awesome. Here is what Lara built:

Lowes - Jewelry Organizer

This jewelry organizer was last week's project (next week, I think it's some kind of race car), and she had a great time putting it together. Kids get a kit of the wooden parts all cut out, some nails and a hammer, safety goggles, and a set of instructions - and then they go to it. Lara rocked the hammer, even though it was just her first time using one, and was so super-proud of what she made. Then we went home and painted it.

February 18, 2010

Happy Birthday, Misha!

Yesterday was the birthday of our very own Mr. Forty-two Roads! Birthday fun was had by all and sundry. Some presents were of the bookish variety, and they came wrapped in paper which featured a picture of Lara in a blue skirt and Daddy with a beard:

Birthday Gift Wrap

Another present was of the crafty variety, and involved the whole family:

Birthday Card and Handprint

Lara drew the birthday cake and made the purple hand print and Jakey made the yellow hand print. Mommy stamped letters and assembled (well, and facilitated the whole Jakey-hand-print experience. Turns out it's actually rather challenging to get a baby to unclench his fist after sticking it in a tub of yellow paint!).

But of course, no birthday is complete without cake and candles. To wit:

dessert - birthday cupcakes

As you can see, mid-process Lara quality controlled the chocolate icing. It passed.

Happy birthday, love!

February 16, 2010

My Valentine

Pink Valetine's Day flowers

Misha bought me this delicate pink bouquet... so pretty, and so good smelling too! He also got a giant box of chocolates from the Naked Chocolate Cafe, but to get a good picture of them would require an X-ray of my tummy. Suffice it to say, they totally rocked. And were immediately devoured. We take our chocolate very seriously around here.

February 15, 2010


This year's valentines were of the lowest form of wit variety (thanks, Dryden!):

yoda one for me
Yoda one for me

wood you be mine
Wood you be mine?

it's boron when you argon
It's Boron when you Argon

i've got my mind's ion you
I've got my mind's ion you

you can count on me
You can count on me

i louvre you
I Louvre you

Clearly these references make sense to us... but they might not to all of you less geeky people out there. So ask, and I'll explain in the comments.

February 14, 2010

Blizzard Fun

What did we do whilst being snowed under and before being plowed out? Well, let's see...

There were Valentines to be made for all the Rockets at Lara's school:

There was some homemade play dough, which was awesome...

until we tried to store it and it got super gluey-sticky in the Tupperware container. (Any advice for next time, folks?)

There was painting with some new tempera:

Of course, there was dressing up to go downstairs to play in our building's ad hoc playgroup. See? It all matches because it all has stripes:

A complex ship-bus was constructed, sailed, driven, and washed in an under-chair car wash:

Still, sometimes during a snowstorm, you've just got to unwind. There was also a lot of this:

February 9, 2010

Snow Day

Did you guys get snow this weekend?

We got about two feet! Lara had a blast. We rigged up a sled out of the lid of one of those giant plastic bins and some luggage straps and Misha hauled her around.

Jakey wasn't a fan, since he couldn't actually play in it and was just being held while cold snow fell on his face. He didn't cry but had this super-serious look like, "Dudes, do we live here now? Why did we move here?"

During the throwing of the snow, Misha remembered the importance of having waterproof clothing. Lara had some. He did not.

The joys of icicles are not to be underestimated. Even if they did come off the wall of a yucky-ish city building.

"Throw some at the camera so I can take a picture! Ok, now throw a little closer. Throw more! Oh, wait, no, that's too close, don't get snow on the camera."

"Now can I do a pose? I want to pose for the picture."

February 3, 2010

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Using some of this recipe, I made a really yummy butternut squash soup the other day. Also, I learned that a squash can apparently sit around for a month or so without anything particularly bad happening to it.

I opted to go with a vegetable stock:

soup stock

Veggie stock is easy: carrots, onions, bell pepper, celery, fresh parsley, salt, pepper, ginger, coriander, 5-6 cloves of garlic, fresh dill. All spices to taste, and all vegetables barely chopped. Boil everything together for five to ten minutes. The resulting liquid? Delicious.

butternut squash soup

For the soup itself, I basically followed the recipe, with some minor changes. One, I used whatever apples we had around (I have a hard time identifying apples. These were stippled and red. I'm guessing anything - even a golden delicious - would probably work just fine.); and two, I skipped the crazy toppings because I'm a little bit of a coward. One squash made two big bowls of soup - which was great for a nice two-person dinner. I've long since given up trying to get Lara to eat my concoctions, which makes me a happier cook (no need to rein it in) and her a happier eater.

February 2, 2010

Sweater Refashion

My beloved Sony Vaio has bit the proverbial dust! So I am posting from Misha's laptop, under his byline. It is fitting, actually, since what I am posting is a refashion of one of his sweaters.

Before it was thus (the big one under the little one):

long brown sweater refashion (before)

And now, it has become like so:

long brown sweater refashion (after)

Lo, now I too have a long sweater to wear with skinny jeans and boots like so many others verily have been doing for so long!