March 31, 2011

Bye-Bye March!

We spent the last day of March getting some fresh air followed by some warm baths, cozy jammies, and hot cocoa. While I realize that this weather would not be considered pleasant to many of you, trust me when I say that we have been very excited about the winter thaw and I was so happy about the 40 degree temps today that I actually ventured outside twice!

This morning I took Alex out in the wagon and handed Jenna my old camera and started out into the neighborhood for a little exploring, snow bank climbing, ice cracking, photography learning, and chatting. I have decided that, instead of selling it for 1/6 of what it cost, I will pass down my trusty ol' Canon Powershot G6 to Jenna and teach her some photography tips and also just let her enjoy taking pictures. I remember when my parents gave me my first camera and how grown up I felt taking my own pictures and thinking I was some amazing photographer! I should share some of those photos in a future post. :P

This was my favorite shot that Jenna caught today. It actually had a part of my shoe and a wagon wheel behind Alex's head which I edited out (not perfectly, I realize), but overall I thought she did a great job! :)

Later this evening, after I was all cozied up in my pajamas and had no intention of venturing back outside, it began to snow. The snow was big and fat and wet and wonderful and I just thought it was the perfect opportunity for Alex to play (I have hardly let him play outside this winter because it has just been too miserable for me) in some snowfall. So I told the girls to get dressed for outside and they squealed and ran around frantically scrounging up socks and boots and jackets then ran outside while I got Alex ready and put on a sweatshirt and grabbed my camera. They had so much fun! I'm so glad I took Alex out there. He was just in heaven. It was adorable.

It's still so funny to me and I wonder if it will ever cease to amaze me at how accustomed to this weather we become. It's crazy how our bodies can acclimate to this insanely cold climate so that 40 degrees feels almost warm and I start wearing flip flops as soon as the snow doesn't cover my feet! Granted, I'm a little weird about my flip flops... but still, I grew up in California. We thought we were freezing to death on the playground when it was 60! And here we are, playing outside in the snow with no mittens or hats or scarves... not even a coat for Jenna or myself! Just hoodies. LOL We crazy!

Make each day count!

March 23, 2011

How to Make a Fancy Nancy

Marah poses as Fancy Nancy with her little "boyfriend" Jack

March is National Reading Awareness month and so Marah's school has been doing several fun activities throughout the month in order to increase literacy and a love of books. If you know me very well at all you will know that I LOVE books and am a strong believer in the importance of instilling a love of literature in my children.

Last Friday the school held a "dress as your favorite storybook character" day and I was so pleased when Marah announced that she wanted to dress up as Fancy Nancy. My mom has bought Marah two Fancy Nancy books and we love them for a few reasons: the illustrations are adorable, there are many fun, interesting, new words like exquisite, extraordinary, ecstatic, iridescent, as well as a few French words, plus... she likes to be fancy. What girl wouldn't love that?!

So here is where my love for crafting comes in quite handy! Everything I desired to make this costume was already in my home. I didn't have to trek to the store or spend any extra money! To start, we raided the dress up bin and found a lacy, pink, vintage prom dress that I wouldn't have a problem fancy-ing up and got going.

Marah and I collaborated on this costume. She gave me ideas for where to put jewels, what color ribbons to use, how to decorate the headband and shoes, and I helped her with her hair and (of course) did all the hot gluing to complete the ensemble. We had a great time working together and we were both so proud of the finished product!

Not only did Marah feel beautiful and get LOTS of compliments on her costume (it was really one of the best in the school), but now we have a costume ready for Halloween! Score! Here are some photos of the process as well as the actual event:

Marah lined up a pattern of jewels for her head piece.

Ribbons MUST go in rainbow order, don't you know?

Hair pulled in to a high ponytail and rolled up with sponge curlers for the night.

Isn't she fancy?

I added beads to the ends of her rainbow ribbons, pink bows and jewels to her shoes, and feathers and jewels to her headband. The striped socks were the perfect accessory to pull this look together :)

Parading her fancy self through the gym.

Even the boys came along!

Marah with all the girls in her class.