Friday, March 7, 2014

What's in Store for the Weekend: Home Style

When Isabel woke up this morning, she asked me what we had planned for tonight and I said, "nothing!"

"And in the morning?"


"And on Sunday?"


It was quite unbelieveable to me too.

But we do have quite a few things planned. But they are all based out of our cozy little home.

We will probably have Sketchbook Saturday Morning, but we'll be around our own table. In our jammies.

I am going to make a few of these awesome and easy fabric baskets.

I will be watching a drawing class from the uber-talented Lisa Congdon.  

We'll walk to our local fair-trade store for some equal exchange coffee.

I'll be making wedding gifts for my little sister! So exciting.

A big pot of Abondigas soup, meatballs and veggies in a beautiful bone broth.

I'll be investigating fermenting Green Tea and Honey.

And I'll start this little project, small but smart knitting!

Isabel has been begging for carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. Or maybe, a gluten free version of this is in order. 

Maybe, I'll finish reading the Perks of Being a Wallflower, I'm almost done!

I hope you have a happy weekend! I am sure we will!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Multicultural Children's Book Day: Josephine!

Isabel has been wearing an old hat of mine lately and offering to be my personal detective. She wrote her name on a piece of scratch paper in red crayon. It says, "Isabel- Detective" and every time I turn the corner, she asks me if I have a case for her to solve.

When the box came from Chronicle Books for Multicultural Children's Book Day, I asked her to open it. She promptly took the book, Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker, out of the packaging and set out to read it, instead of eating her gluten free ramen.

The book set her on an investigation of her own. Asking questions like, "What is Segregation?" This book set us on an afternoon of talking about what life was like for Josephine and how it was different from Isabel's life. Josephine didn't have proper clothes to keep her warm, so she danced instead. She didn't have her own bed, she slept in one bed with her whole family. This conversation was priceless.

We love the illustrations by Christian Robinson, each page is a joy.  The whole book is written in a dance of it's own -- it holds a cadence from beginning to end.  Patricia Hruby Powell's retelling of Josephine's life captures a beautiful story of hardship to triumph, struggle, desire and hard work. Josephine reminds you do do what you love with your whole soul.

Thank you to Chronicle Books for sending us this lovely book, we will be donating it to our library so if you are local, you'll be able to read it too!

Do you want to see more Multicultural Children's Book Day reviews? Visit these lovely folks:

2GirlsLostInaBook · 365 Days of Motherhood · A Bilingual Baby · A Simple Life, Really? · Africa to America · After School Smarty Pants · All Done Monkey · Andi’s Kids Books · Anita Brown Bag · Austin Gilkeson · Barbara Ann Mojica · Books My Kids Read · Bottom Shelf Books · Cats Eat Dogs · Chasing The Donkey · Children's Book-a-Day Almanac · Children's Books Heal · Church o Books · CitizenBeta · Crafty Moms Share · Discovering The World Through My Son's Eyes · Early Words · Flowering Minds · Franticmommy · Gathering Books · GEO Librarian · Gladys Barbieri · Going in Circles · Growing Book by Book · iGame Mom · I’m Not The Nanny · InCulture Parent · Itsy Bitsy Mom ·Just Children’s Books- Kid World Citizen · Kristi’s Book Nook · Mama Lady Books · Mama Smiles · Mission Read · Mother Daughter Book Reviews · Mrs AOk · MrsTeeLoveLifeLaughter · Ms. Yingling Reads · Multicultural Kids Blog · One Sweet World · Open Wide The World · P is for Preschooler · Rapenzel Dreams · School4Boys · Sharon the Librarian · Spanish Playground · Sprout's Bookshelf · Squishable Baby · Stanley and Katrina · Teach Mama · The Art of Home Education · The Brain Lair · The Educators' Spin On It · The Family-Ship Experience · The Yellow Door Paperie · This Kid Reviews Books · Trishap’s Books · Unconventional Librarian · Vicki Arnold · We3Three · World for Learning · Wrapped in Foil

Help us celebrate the joy and diversity of multicultural children’s books. Join us for a special day of reading and fun {January 27th} by clicking here!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

A Wintery Evening

On Thursday the 2nd the kids got home from their first day back at school after the holidays and we were all a bit antsy. I was so glad that I had prepped dinner the night before: quinoa cooked in chicken broth and pan drippings after we baked a chicken.

After work and school, we came home and popped dinner into the oven, rushed into our snow gear and headed out for our favorite trail.

We caught the last few minutes of sunshine, watched the sunset and then fade into a deep winter blue.

Izzo meditatively drew circles like an organic labyrinth into the crunchy snow. As we walked along she asked if we could have our own time on the trail. So the "ladies" are going to take a winter picnic out to the trail sometime this weekend. Even if it just is a thermos of hot chocolate and a quiet walk for the two of us.

We arrived home to the most delicious smell our simple dinner was welcoming to our freezing hands--quinoa with chicken, mushrooms and peas. And we finished our night with a sweet treat, gluten free oven s'mores. A gooey ending to a perfect evening.

Friday, January 3, 2014


On Christmas day, I found all of us, busy with something that needed our attention.  I got a glimpse of our future and I think I like it.

Alone and focused, but very together.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

All is Calm, All is Bright

Every year, we choose a guiding theme for the upcoming year, usually I take the theme from a Christmas carol and use it on our Christmas card, but I try to keep it in the forefront of my mind as we live out our daily lives. 

For 2013, I chose All is Calm and All is Bright

It seemed fitting, because who doesn't want to be calm, quiet and full of light? 

Unbeknownst to me our guiding theme became my mantra as we passed through some of the darkest times of our family life and marriage. And claim those words as glorious truth through some of the most adventurous and beautiful times in our family life and marriage. 

I read recently though I can't remember where, that adversity gives birth to hope. Without struggling through adversity, you can be left with an unshakeable hopelessness. And though, I don't know about unshakeable hopelessness, I do know that our hard fought adversity has indeed given birth to hope. And more than that we are now thriving. 

We've learned a lot. Basically, practice radical honesty, ask for help when you need it, take a step back and seek out the good and the beautiful in life. Even if it seems like nothing is beautiful. Be on the watch for it, it will find you. 

And this all sounds trite and hocus-pocus, but looking back on this year, I wouldn't trade any ounce of it, because of the place we're in now.

And remarkably, as we enter 2014. We're entering it Calm & Bright.

So we chose for this years theme, Repeat the Sounding Joy.

Because, we could all use a joyful year to recuperate. (Hows that for honesty!?)

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Quotable Sunday: Kindness

Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.
Mother Theresa

Quotable Sundaya tradition started by Kyrie of Are So Happy and carried on with Kerry of Young Ones and Linnea of PeppermintAlley.

Friday, November 8, 2013

This Moment: On the Street Where You Live

A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Joining Soulemama

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