Friday, July 30, 2010

Hey Summer – Slow Down!

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So summer is in full bloom and I feel like I’m burning the candle at both ends because I don’t want to miss a second of its magic.  I’m having way too much fun.

A few days ago I saw the most beautiful spider I’ve ever seen.  Right outside my front window.  She was there for three days in a row.  I loved staring through the glass at the beauty. 

Now don’t get me wrong – Normally I loathe spiders – they give me the Hebe-Jebes.  But this one was enchanting.  I’ve never seen one so pure White, even the legs.

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She never let me get too close and would always scurry to the underside of my hydrangea flowers if I got to near.  But wow, she was pretty.

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I haven’t seen her for a few days and I really miss her.  

I’ve been also having too much fun with my wood burning tool.  Who cares if my hair smells as if I’ve just sat around a campfire. 

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I made my first outdoor fairy door and hid it in a local park.  Hopefully little children can grow their imaginations.  I’m praying no trolls find it and decide to destroy my little offering.  I made a tutorial on how to make one HERE if your interested in making one for your imagination.

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I’ve also been going as often as possible to the local Farmer’s Market.  It seems like the turn out to our local community market goes down every year, even though there is so much to see.  I’m hoping it doesn’t go away.

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This donut fed 5 of us - it was that enormous.  Plus Free Kids Crafts, great art finds…  And the bells, well they were a free gift from the fused glass artist because my girls enthralled him with their friendliness.

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And the flowers.  I have to pinch my pennies so that every couple of weeks I can brighten my home.  $5 for flowered sunshine that lasts double the time the supermarket flowers last.

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And we always love taking a trip to the local swimming hole at the river’s edge.  Yes, it’s a river and my girls are wearing life jackets for Mom’s peace of mind. 

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Seems like Hope has taken after me.  My childhood was spent swinging from the vines of my backyard willow tree.  I have a feeling that this daughter is going to inherit my fearless, mad tom-boy skills.

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So summer – Please slow down.  There’s so much to do, see, explore, craft, and enjoy.  You are passing by way to quickly.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Walking Wonders

I’ve been keep the kids busy walking this summer.  Walking  is mighty cheap as far as activities go.  And cheap is about all I can afford right now.  The trick is to pick new locations to meander through, otherwise I’m in for a moan-fest.

One of their favorite places to explore is the local river.

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What kid doesn’t like skipping rocks or digging their hands and feet into nice warm sand.

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However, our successful venture with the Fairy Tree House has them all itching to create new dwellings.   So when walking along the river you should have seen how excited they got when passing log-jams (now above water since the spring flood waters have receded).  It’s almost like treasure hunting.

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Just look at what they finagled me into letting them haul home.  Lea wants another fairy house for her bedroom.  T-rev is positively giddy about the prospects of building a Halo War Command Combat Tree Fort Base (something, something).  Evo-Man just wants to carve a branch into a sword.  Geez, some boys never grow up – Bless Em’.  They must be their mother’s sons.  That and it’s free, and they are enlarging their creative minds.  How can I say no?

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Wow, and we’ve free wood for the fire pit if they get lazy.

You wouldn’t believe how this enormous stump got me dreaming of renting a crane, and semi-flatbed truck to haul it back to my backyard.  Can’t you just see and entire Fairy City hidden in all it’s nooks and crannies.  Sometimes my imagination is a curse, what with wanting an old stump this bad.  I probably sat and stared at it for a good 10 minutes.  It was a nice dream.

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Fortunately my kids stayed with me.  They are used to seeing mom take a quick jaunt to dreamland. 

Oh, and wading in a cool stream on a warm day is positively Blissful.

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Maybe it’s just me but I swear I see tiny flakes of Gold Pixie Dust running all along the river.

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And when we can’t go to the river we go to the enchanted woods.  The Lost Boys never explored something this breath-taking.  Lily pad covered ponds with amazingly blue and turquoise dragonflies skimming over the mirror still water.  You can almost sense the enchantment floating all around you.

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The Dragonflies wings always fascinate me,  so delicate and swift.   This picture doesn’t do their glimmering color justice. 

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And in the woods if you look out the side of your eye you might just see a sunbeam glance off a fairies wings.

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And should Hopes wee legs get tired as she traverses the wooded path… well…

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There’s always a big brother willing to offer her a ride.

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I think I must live in the most beautiful place on Earth.  Go ahead, Wow me with views of your neck of the woods.  Are they as enchanting as mine?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Learning to Love Myself

I’ve spent a great deal of time this month in deep reflection.  I mean DEEP, DEEP, Soul-Searching Reflection, where you hold a gi-normous magnifying glass to your soul and life (Past, Present & Future).  I think the one year UnBloggable Anniversary had something to do with it.   Nothing like an ongoing UnBloggable to turn you upside down and force you to refocus your priorities.   There are many other reasons why.  This POST by Daring Young Mom knocked me off my feet earlier this summer as well.  It’s a must read!!!

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Like many I’ve struggled with self-esteem my entire life.  And I’m now seeing how the negative comments I make about my body, intellect, etc, are effecting the way my children view themselves.  How stupid is it that a 4 and 8 year old make remarks about themselves being stupid or fat?  Of course, I immediately sit them down, tell them how precious they are, remind them not to compare themselves to others, yada, yada, yada.  But, the only way for them to really believe me is if I stop the Self-Hate Myself.

I’m working on it.  Really Hard.  Don’t really want to be that kind of hypocrite mom.

And it’s working.

Slowly, but it’s working.

My long time readers know I rarely post pictures of myself.  You know the typical ‘You’ll break the camera, cause I’m ugly thought & excuse.’  But I decided to take off my mask.  Got a little courage from SHAKTI MAMA’s Project located HERE.  I hid way too long behind what I thought others thought of me.  Bought clothes, furniture, and STUFF because I thought other’s would think it was nice and not necessarily because I loved it. 

Well this year I turned the scary Big 40.  You know Mid-Life Crisis Warning time.  Of course I didn’t go out and jump out of an airplane, or buy a Motorcycle (even thought I thought about it).  Wanted a little red one that I could call Bella.  Silly right!  UGH!

The best thing about turning 40 – Reflection. 

Now, I’m finally taking steps to embrace me, my thoughts, dreams, goals, likes, etc,   And the most amazing thing is happening --- I’m starting to like me.  No, it’s even stronger than that.

I actually Love me, myself, and I.  Shucks, it only took 40 years, but I’m viewing myself through more mature, enlightened eyes.

Shakti’s first project was a making a mask, but seeing as I’ve been behind one way too long I thought I’d show you the real thing.  No make-up, no photo editing, and no broken camera.

Introducing me.

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Freckles, sun-spots, moles and all.  And it’s not that bad, if I do say so myself. 

Yes, I know I won’t grace the cover of any magazine but I am a masterpiece in progress.  Want to see something I really like about myself.

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I’ve got a head full of super thick, slightly wavy (when still damp like above) wonderful long hair.  I mostly keep it in a pony tail or braid because I don’t like it in my face.  But I think it’s pretty cool, even now that it has a sprinkling of gray in there.  Gray = Life Experience.  Let’s just say I’ve gotten more life experience over the past year than I have the previous 39 put together. 

And here’s something I wear to help me to remember to keep my dreams alive.

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It’s actually a combination of three of my favorite necklaces.  My dream necklace that my in-laws gave me for last Christmas along with a little fairy for imagination and a flower bell that really tinkles a charming note reminding me that to find happiness I’ve got to seek it out.  It sure won’t come and find me if I’m wallowing in self-pity. 

You know, my girls, they are going to make it too.  We all are.

How do we break the self-hate cycle once and for all?  It’s probably different for all of us.  Would love your suggestions because I know for a fact it’s a process that won’t happen overnight.  But it will be so worth it in the end.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Second Star to the Right Adventure II

Pull out your Spyglass, Cutlass, Fairy Wings, or Pixie Dust because it’s that time again to enter the world of your imagination.

Second Star invite

Last Year’s Adventure was my summer highlight, so I couldn’t pass up on the opportunity to host another Enchanting Blog Party for the Young and Young at Heart.

Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create.                Albert Einstein

This Adventure is our family’s way of making up for the lack of Holiday’s in August.  Sure you can celebrate that it’s National Catfish Month or that the…

8th is ‘Sneak a Zucchini onto your neighbor’s porch day (which I would love by-the-way)  or…

13th is Blame Someone Else Day

18th is Bad Poetry Day (Who makes this stuff up?) 

So granted I think a Second Star to the Right Adventure is merited by the fact that we need to take time to smell the roses, and enjoy life and the little treasures all around us.

‘But Peter’, said Wendy.  ‘How do we get to Never Land?’

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It’s quite simple…

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Think Happy Thoughts… and then act on them.  Between now and August 21st let your inner child take flight and have an adventure or two or a dozen,  Then on the 21st you can blog about the Adventure(s) and we’ll all link up and Visit Neverland or Wonderland (whichever your preference) together.  And yes I’ll have some magical more Magical gifts that I’ll be giving away to some lucky participants.

Can’t you just feel the Pixie Dust sprinkling down on you now?

Ideas for Enchanting Fun:

Find some Pirate Treasure,

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Build Sandcastles,

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Or Swim with the Mermaids like last year’s blog party participant Fairy Child Heirlooms.

swim with mermaids

Explore New Worlds,

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Build a Fairy Garden,

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Make Fairy crafts or Gifts

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Better yet, Dance and Dine with the Fairies.

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Watch the Clouds or…

rainbow clouds.

Sleep under the Stars.

moon night

And like a child don’t forget to find the beauty all around, be it in the sky or under your feet.


So embrace the spirit of imagination within, find joy and happiness in the small and simple things.  Then come tell us how it is you keep a youthful heart.  That way we can all find just how it is, that we really do find Never Land.  Remember that this is a family friendly blog so go light on the Pirate Rum and keep your content Clean or I’ll be sending Hook your way.

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Leave a comment and your blog address and I’ll be sure and link you up on the side.  That and by joining the party you’ll have a chance to win some Treasure!  Want to know what it looks like?

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I will be giving away a couple of Fairy Doors and a necklace to some of my lucky participants.

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More info. on the gifts can be found here. Just participate in the Second Star to the Right adventure and I’ll draw three lucky names from among those participants on the 28th of August.

  Second Star invite

Feel Free to copy this picture and link it back to me.

 The great man is he who does not lose his child's-heart. ~Mencius, Book IV

Can’t wait to find out where imagination takes you….

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Dreaming of Magic

There is hope in dreams, imagination, and in the courage of those who wish to make those dreams a reality. ~Jonas Salk

Well the Magical Day has arrived.  And I wanted to share with you something I’ve been dreaming about doing for over a year now.  Special Thanks to Kelly for giving me the excuse – and a Kick-In-The-Pants Deadline to actually do something about following dreams.  Be sure to stop by and see all the wonderful dreams realized by visiting the participants of this party.  Just click on the picture for more magic.

Secret Dream Party

So what was one of my dreams?  To make some magic with my little girls this summer.  We succeeded in creating this little Fairy Tree House. 

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The enchanting part was we didn’t spend a penny to make it.  I didn’t want to bore you with every step in making our project but if your interested you can click on my other blog for a step-by-step process.  Click HERE.

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Instead I want to show you the magic in following your dreams. 

I put this dream off for a couple of years because I wanted to visit the beach and find the perfect driftwood from which to make our tree house.  Then I thought, why not look locally.  And I found it.

As inspiration we covered our wee fairy house in our favorite fairy quote’s,

And as the seasons come and go, here's something you might like to know.  There are fairies everywhere:  under bushes, in the air, playing games just like you play, singing through their busy day.  So listen, touch, and look around - in the air and on the ground.  And if you watch all nature's things, you might just see a fairy's wing.  ~Author Unknown

One thing I’ve discovered along the way is that when you are in pursuit of your dreams, doors will open making them possible.  Sometimes those doors don’t open until the last second, but yet they still open and give you enough hope to keep you on your course.

"I learned this, at least, by my experiment; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours."

~Henry David Thoreau

Yes, I helped my daughters build our Fairy dwelling complete with…

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A Crocheted Hammock, perfect for any fairy who wishes to rest her wings.

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A Feathered Friends Nest just had to be made as well.

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I know many a fairy that will grace our wee home. 

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‘There is nothing like a dream to create the future.’    ~Victor Hugo

I for one, hope my future is full of dreams.  There are many more that I have that came closer to being fulfilled this week.

One dream I talked about a couple of years ago.  A dream of owning my very own Redneck Dryer.  I think if dreams are really meant to be they have a way of finding you, even if you’ve buried them deep.  This dream just wouldn’t die.

The day after my birthday someone anonymously left a magical gift on my porch.  A pair of honest-to-goodness sturdy metal clothesline poles.   

It took a while to convince my Honey that adding these to our backyard wouldn’t lead the neighbors to label us backwards hicks (they already know we are), but it would do so much towards helping me achieve a dream.   Look what my kids helped me do today.  I know it doesn’t look like much of a dream, but it So IS.

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We cemented bases in for my poles.  That way we can take them with us if we ever move.  

Fresh smelling sheets, no more running the dryer on melting hot days… I’m giddy just thinking about it.

Oh, and I’ll be able to then do THIS with my kids.

Some dreams take time.  Most worthwhile dreams do.  I saved for three months to bring this sweet fairy home.

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She graces the entrance to yet another dream, but one I’m not ready to share just yet.  But soon, maybe by next month.  That’s the wonderful things about dreams.  Finishing one, gives you the desire and energy to dream another, and another, and another. 

"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."
Eleanor Roosevelt

So make the future happen today.

Thank you so much for taking a peek at some of my wee dreams.  Hope you have as much fun following yours as I do mine.