June 29, 2010

swim 2010

I am not a strong swimmer. Never have been. Probably never will be.

I don't really like to dunk my head under water. The water hurts when it goes up my nose.

I prefer to just bob aimlessly in the pool. It's kind of pathetic, but that's just how it is.

Which is in stark contrast to the folks round here. The kids here practically have a black belt in swimming. I kid you not. I know several kids Finn's age and younger who are already in competitive swim meets. It's very serious business.

There is no way we can(or want to)compete with all that, but I do want my boys to have a love for swimming, even if I do not.

So I signed them up last year with the best swim teacher in town. And did so again this year.

Originally we signed Ollie up too, but decided he was not ready this year. A decision we might regret, considering he fell into a water fountain recently and was floundering helplessly til I fished him out. Little Oolie Boolie. I love you and your ratty old kitty.

Finn's confidence in the water sky-rocketed this year. I could hardly believe the transformation from years past.

Here's my squirt jumping off the diving board. The DIVING BOARD, omyword! Are they even legal anymore???

Here we go. Mama is a bit nervous. Finn is here and Mr. Bonetti is waaaaaay over there, halfway across the pool.


I'm on the edge of my seat, waiting for my eldest to resurface.

And there he is! He's swimming toward the side of the pool.

He makes it to safety!

And the crowd goes wild!

I was so proud of Finn for accomplishing this mighty feat all by himself.

Pffft. And they called him a 'sinker' a few years back.

God bless you Mr. Bonetti.

And then Calvin Jack was up to bat.

Dear sweet Calvin.

He was anything but happy about swim this year.

He was very apprehensive and even tried to play sick.

"C'mon Calvin! Get up! Grab your flip-flops. We are going to be late. It's tiiiiiiime to gooooooo!" I barked unsympathetically at the little pile on my kitchen floor.

"Jeepers, Davi, have a little compassion", John said. "He's terrified. Swim lessons are scary".

And I instantly turned to mush. I felt a bit ashamed of myself. I had no idea how abrupt I sounded until John pointed it out.

So I gently prodded my little 4-year-old out the door.

He really did fine last year, so I was surprised by his reluctance.

Mr. Bonetti's demeanor changed when he was dealing with Calvin. He was a drill Sergeant with Finn, but he turned into a big ole softy with my Calvin.

"Am I going to drop you?" he asks every time Calvin gets into the water.

"Nooooooooo!" is the answer.

I die from Calvin's precious little arrow--his squishy arms together, as best as he can manage.

It's in these rare moments, I am so thankful to be around to behold these fleeting glimpses of Calvin's remaining 'baby spark'.

He might be 4. But he's still little and precious. Trying to be big.

There was one day, though, when Calvin dared to defy Mr. Bonetti.

"Calvin, swim to me" Mr. Bonetti ordered.

"No." Calvin said in a whimper. And then practically whispering "You're too far".

And this occurred 3 or 4 times in a row. Gasp.

Mr. Bonetti did NOT tolerate this insubordination very well. He got a little tough on Calvin. Which is what I LOVE about Mr. Bonetti. He knows when to be strict and when to be sweet.

And yes, that is a look of trepidation and terror you see on his face.

He needed MUCH coaxing to jump off of the diving board.

And away we go! Overall, Calvin did just fine. He can swim.

I'm sure they will all be in swim lessons again next year. Until then, we need to practice lots.

John is so cute--he took Finn and Calvin to the community pool yesterday. Something I personally do not have the ambition to try.

June 22, 2010

Gone to the birds

I've slowly been working at sprucing up my family room. Key word here is SLOW. I mentioned a while ago that I got some new curtains. I have always been drawn to white curtains, perhaps because they are light and airy.

And lots of birds have taken up residence in my home as of late. It was not intentional--it just sort of happened!

Bird #1 landed on my piano.

I found the silly bird at one of my favorite antique stores. I wasn't sure if it was ugly or charming, but bought it anyway. Back at home, I fell in love with it. I love how it goes with my favorite green candle sticks{awesome gift from my sister Lindsay}.

I'm still not sure if the bird is ugly or cute, but love it regardless.

I was also haphazardously throwing around ideas for pillows, and started off in this direction:
Had lots of fun learning to make rolled roses. But the overall look of this pillow was too fussy for my home.

So I took a minor U-turn and started another pillow. Enters bird #2.

The blue button seen in the yellow rose is actually a vintage earring that I found at my antique store. I think it adds a little *bling*.

Then my dear friend Becca inspired me with her doily pillows...and I think Lorie was making a pillow with some sort of crochet overlay{not sure what you used Lor, or how it turned out!}. Thanks for the inspiration girls! Hope you don't mind sharing your brilliance!

Enters bird #3 on another pillow.

I spied the above yellow/gold doily at my favorite antique store and my heart skipped a beat...but when I saw the hefty price tag(a whopping $6.75), I initially put it back thinking I could find it cheaper elsewhere.

Um no.

So I slunk back and {happily} forked over the bucks. I think it was worth it.

I also purchased a bunch of vintage buttons, some of which are seen at the end of this branch.

The green pillow has the other vintage earring and a funky blue pin I got for $1.

And then I was minding my own business, somehow meandering through Anthropologie, some 100+ miles from home... you know...just in the neighborhood...

and BAM! Enters birds #4, #5 and #6 galore, in some dishtowels.

My first thought was to turn these dish towels into pillows:

But, back at home they perched so happily in my kitchen, I did not have the heart to dismantle them. Plus, all the embroidered teacups scream KITCHEN! Yup, they belong in the kitchen.

Then, once again, minding my own business (in Joanns), when some aqua fabric jumped out at me. It reminded me of the aqua dish towel above.

After hemming and hawing for half and hour(the last thing I needed was more fabric), I decided to buy it. Came to $2.45, LOL.

I scanned the anthro birds from my dishtowel to my computer and embroidered me some birds.

Totally knocked off the birds, down to the colors. Shameful I tell you.

And for the first time in a while, pink was allowed in my house. It's on the middle birdie. Pink floss #3328, to be precise.

And this mustard yellow pillow was constructed using a fun thick crochet doily.

One of my favorite buttons is the sparkly yellow one on the blue dotted rose.

I could not find a grey throw anywhere, so I made this one from some reversible wool fabric. I made my own bias tape using the same fabric, which was exciting, but did a cruddy job matching the corners. Got a little lazy.

I'm currently working on another little project involving picture frames--almost done, but not quite. I am painfully slow these days. Everything is taking me waaaay too long to complete, including this blog post, so I shall sign off for now!

Toodles, and happy decorating! Or sunning--whatever you are doing these beautiful first days of summer!

June 20, 2010

Father's Day 2010

Time for the annual Father's Day photo session!

Last year we stayed home for Father's Day. I remember Calvin looking so triumphant!
And this year, Calvin's doing something goofy again!
This year we were at my folk's place. The above photo was taken by my old red play house.

And this one is in front of dad's groovy shed/love shack.

John with his 2 youngest babies last year,

and John with his youngest 'babies' this year.

The boys hugging their daddy last year,

And the boys hugging daddy this year...plus a lurker, LOL!

It's cousin Emily! My sister Jessica and her family moved back{Hallelujah!!!!} and we got to celebrate with them this year. It was so special!

And in my next blooper shot, we have cousin Kate!

I die from these adorable girls. We love them so much and are so happy to have them back home again!

June 19, 2010

Dear Daddy,

We love you because

you make us pancakes every saturday morning,

you take us out to play baseball after dinner,

or to the park,

or play board games with us.

You encourage us to work hard doing our chores, and teach us how to handle money.
You make us yummy snacks when mommy wants to feed us nuts and sticks.

You are always kind, patient and gentle when we are hard to handle,

and you help mommy by cleaning the kitchen every night.

You read to us all the time,

and pray with us and tuck us in every night.

We love you daddy! You are our best friend!

Your little men.