Monday, March 29, 2010

Not Me Monday! (aka post 299)


Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

I did not set my children in front of the television to write this post.

I never mix up the name of my dog and the names of one of my children when I am scolding someone. I never shout "Lena, stop that!" When in fact, I mean one of my children. I am not my mother, or grandmother, and always say the right name with the right person/dog.
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(Just to reassure everyone who is worried: the kids are never alone with Lena. They just love to be around each other pretty much all the time!)


I am not sneaking in the sneak peek of the 300 post giveaway for all of you. I mean, really...
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I did not find this out of print Joel Dewberry fabric that I've been on the hunt for 2 years for (on ebay), and I'm not sharing it with you in the form of an incredibly cute bag. Not me!

I did not recently have such an awful day with the kids that I was so busy correcting, disciplining, explaining, conversing, (and of course not yelling) with them that I was in tears when Knut got home because they were so awful that day I actually had no time to make supper and we had nothing to eat in the house. He didn't then, tell me to run into town to pick up some Pizza Hut while he and the kids made me some brownies. I mean I always keep my cool with the kids, and provide for them fun and cognitively developing activities for them, and don't just yell "Go play and leave me alone so I can make supper" over and over again.

I've also not told my children multiple times lately "you can find something fun to do, or I'll find something for you." (which means they'll get some chores.)

I have not been falling behind on my laundry...again...and I haven't worn the same pair of socks more than once because they're the cleanest ones I have. I also put Elias in the fantastically cute clothes he has every day, and never ever leave him in his pajamas all day long because we're not going anywhere that day.

I do not use the ratty old diapers that used to be David's and should have been thrown away long ago on Elias when his nice diapers are washing. They should be burned, and they are so thin I can put my fingers through some holes, but when I'm in a pinch, they work. I don't sell fabulously cute diapers, and then put my old child in diapers that aren't fit for rags when I'm behind on washing diapers. I will throw them away this week and make Elias 2-3 more decent diapers to replace them. (shhh...probably not.)

Happy Monday!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Post 298

We're almost there. Do you see? Almost at post #300. The magic giveaway post. Since our last post there's been a few happenings to share:

My brother is visiting from California. He's awesome with the kids (having Dora the Explorer games on his iPhone doesn't hurt), and he makes me laugh all day long. He'll be here through Monday, and I'm not sure what we'll do. We're kinda a boring family.

I've been asked to do a presentation by our local mall at their "Ladies Night Out" event near the end of April. They want me to do a presentation on cloth diapers, explaining all the different kinds, etc. I feel honored that they've asked, and I'm pretty excited. They are giving me a booth in exchange for this, and if I do happen to sell stuff, the May 1st stocking of Nerdy Gerdy might be pretty tiny! I guess they found out about me through the sweet ladies at the local yarn store where I get most of my wool. The ladies there are so sweet, and asked me for a stack of my business cards that they could make available to their customers.

Knut finally agreed to let me go to my first ever crafting retreat in 2 weeks at my absolute favorite camp. He has a tough time committing to watching the kids this time of year, but he thinks it will work, and if not, he'll grab some help. I'm turning in my registration tomorrow before he changes his mind.

I can't decide if I should bring Silje's grandmother flower garden quilt to work on (this one is all by hand), or if I should bring a red and white quilt that I've been putting blocks together for here and there when I need a break from a difficult or tedious project. (That one is done all by machine. I'm making after this pattern.) Or I could bring "work" for Nerdy Gerdy that definitely could get done, and I'm trying to stockpile for the upcoming crazy summer months where sewing time might be scarce. Knut says I should bring all 3...and some knitting too. (Does he know me or what!) I just need to find a ride, as Knut will need the van for the weekend. I'm sure I'll find someone to pool with! I'm so stinkin' excited about this too!

A whole weekend of uninterrupted sewing time and someone preparing and cleaning up my meals too! I can only imagine what I can get done! I'm giddy just thinking about it!

The April 1st stocking is nearly ready. The wool is complete. The bags have one little addition left, and the new bamboo fitted diapers...well they're giving me problems. We'll see what happens with those!

I was going to give you a giveaway peek of the fabric used on the prize (which I think would make you all gasp in wonder) but alas, my camera is missing at the moment. I'm sure when Knut get's home, he'll know right where it is (I hope!) and you'll soon get some previews to drool over.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Always Something To Do

It seems there's always something to do these days, but I feel less and less like I'm falling behind, and more and more like I'm catching up. Still, the pace remains the same. I haven't been getting to bed as early as I should, but whenever I try, I start thinking about some people going through so much in our church right now. We go to such a tiny little church, by most people's standards, and it seems like there are fewer and fewer people to hold up in prayer the people who are dealing with some serious issues. One woman, younger than me, still in her first year of marriage, just had a cancerous brain tumor removed this week. Another woman is trying to figure out her medication for MS, and seems to be getting similar treatment to that of a lab rat. Some are battling with severe, severe depression, and still others are mourning the death of close family, and then of course the celebration of countless new babies in the church. For such a small church, we are definitely growing in one age bracket: newborns! Not to mention, my brother and sister in law are never far from my thoughts as they are adjusting to life with 2 little boys. Neither is my sister as she's not to far away from delivering her 2 little girls.

So at night, when everyone in the house is in bed, I feel like it's my only time to really pray. Everything is so quiet, and peaceful. Lena falls asleep on my toes, and life gets a little clearer. It's so easy to fall into worry, and praying is a way to get rid of all of that cluttering worry. God has such a way of calming us down, if we only bring to him our problems.

This week is only half done, and I still have so much left to do, I wish it would slow down. My brother is coming to visit us from California this weekend, which is a treat. (He's really coming for a wedding, but it just so happens he gets to visit us too!) So when he's at his friend's wedding, I need to use every moment to tie up all the loose ends for all the new things going on Nerdy Gerdy on first. I'm trying to have everything done and ready for a photo shoot on Monday, so I have time to get all the website things done before the first.

Unfortunately, Knut has talked me into watching t.v. with him after the kids have gone to bed, and I did not get to sew a few nights that I was planning, so my whole wish list of things I wanted done might not get done. Something on my wish list will have to be postponed, and unfortunately, it might end up being replacing the diapers that sold this last month. There are only 5 single diapers to do, and would not take me long to do. However, I think the rest of the month will be dedicated to finishing all the projects that were started. All the buttercup bags need the last step completed, and I need to finish the snap in soakers for the bamboo diapers, but that's about it. One of my knitting projects is just so close to completion, that I may try to push that through too.

So it looks as though I may be short a few pockets and AIOs for April, and I'm thinking about just putting 5 diapers in the store a week late. I probably will. I have a custom order going out soon, too, and that will be good to get done.

I don't think I'll be able to keep up this pace this summer, as I'll have gardening and canning/freezing added to my plate. That's kind of why I've tried to stuff the store a little extra this month. I was hoping to get some lead time with that. I keep reminding myself, though, that I have 3 sets of hands to work with in the garden this year (Mine, Silje's and David's) and I need to make good use of that.

This is all getting so rambley, but I think that's what I needed right now. I'd love to share more, too, about some adjustments in parenting practices lately that have really helped David, especially. I'll have to save that for another post, though.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Quiz

I love chatting with all of you. Whether it's on the phone, or chatting on facebook, or just reading your comments, I just love hearing about what you say about something I wrote, or something I made. I really makes my day.

From some chats, I've heard some people say they are thinking of cloth diapers, but they're not sure what kind to get. So in the mode of a cheesy magazine quiz, here is a "diaper quiz" for you. I've never made a quiz before, so it's pretty darn simple. Let me know (even if you don't have babes in dipes) what kind of diaper mom you are! I'd love to see even some of you grandmas out there, say which one they would use if they had to do it all over again with today's options.

Diaper Quiz

1)When it comes to having to waste vs. having something easy and simple...


a) I’d pick easy every day. Hey, it’s tough enough being a mom.

b)As long as it’s not too hard, and saves me money, I’m game.

c) I want to do everything I can for the environment and my pocketbook. If it means more of my time and energy, than that’s what it means.


2)When it comes to touching wet diapers…

a) my hands should not get wet. Period. Ew.

b)I don’t like it, but as a mom I’ve gotten used to having some sort of fluid on me all the time, and I’ve just learned to wash my hands a lot and call it good.

c)It’s just a fact of life, and it doesn’t bother me.


3)When it comes to natural materials…


a)I wear polyester, so I have no problem with my child wearing it.

b)Whether man made or natural, what matters is it lasts and gets the job done!

c)I choose natural, organic, sustainable products whenever they are an option.


4)When it comes to money…


a)I’d like to save money. I may not pick the cheapest route, but as long as I’m spending less than using disposibles, I’m happy.

b)I love a bargin, and will look at all the small print, and see the hidden costs like a bigger energy bill, and accessories. It has to work for my family, but those things are very important to me.

c)Simple often equals cheap. I love the simple life, and think we are often too pampered. If it was good enough for the pioneers, it’s good enough for me.


5) When it comes to time…


a)I would would choose to have short diaper changes and longer washing/drying time. I don’t need more folding. Seriously, I have enough to do!

b)I would rather have short diaper changes, short washing/drying time, and a little folding. I can do that while I watch t.v.

c)I don’t mind the length of diaper changes at all, or folding, as long as it’s cheap, both diaper wise and energy wise. I have the time. That’s what I’m here for.


If you chose mostly “A”

You’re an AIO/AI2 mom. You need simple and easy. Your hands are full and you don’t need one more thing on your plate to do. To you, time is money, and you do not have any more time…or money. You’re hesitant with cloth diapers, but you really want to give it a go. You know yourself, and if it’s not easy, you won’t do it. You’ll find that an extra load of laundry is the only change you’ll have to make. You’re probably loving the colors available and are already coordinating in your head how they will match with different outfits.


If you chose mostly “B”

You’re a fitted/cover (wool or PUL) or pocket mom…or both! You understand that sometimes you just have to get stuff done. Your purse is full of random stuff that your kid needs, and you love to be prepared for anything! You don’t like a lot of work, but you are determined to squeeze every nickel out of a dollar, and if that means you might have to touch the wet part of a diaper, or you have to stuff pockets, than that’s what you’ll do. In fact, you have compared diapers everywhere, and have figured the cost of each including shipping because every penny is important to you. You don’t like fuss, you don’t like leaks, and you don’t like waste. You like having lots of options because as a mom, you need to be flexible.


If you chose mostly “C”

You’re a prefolds/cover (wool or PUL) mom. You love sitting and watching your kids play as you fold prefolds or flats into nice simple piles like a Martha Stewart magazine picture. There’s something calming about it. Whether using Snappis or pins, you love organic, and simple diapering…the way it’s been done for generations. You love things that are vintage and natural. You love cooking from scratch, and have an organic garden and compost pile. You don’t mind folding or pinning or any of that, because that’s just your job and it doesn’t bother you.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Taking Steps

I should have posted last weekend, but through a few colds and coughs and infections going through our family right now, I got a bit distracted! Elias still prefers crawling to anything else, but he's been getting more bold in his quest for walking. He walks along the wall in hallways now, and he'll stand and without touching anything, pick something off the floor and then stand again. He's been "lunging" between furniture items, and we had a feeling that walking was not too far away.

We were having a little visit with Knut's grandparents who live near us who the kids affectionately call "Oldefar" and "Great-Grandma." "Oldefar" is Norwegian for "great-grandpa" although I think a more literal translation might be "oldest father." Great-Grandma doesn't want to be called "Oldemor" as she thinks it's silly. ;)

Oldefar and Great-Grandma are I believe 94 (93?) and 91 respectively. They still live by themselves out (close to) the farm, and as healthy as I'd hope to be at their age! Oldefar walks so much, except in the winter, when he does the stairs several times as he doesn't want to risk a fall on the ice. So who better, for Elias to take his first steps too!

That's right. When we were having "a little lunch" at their house, Elias was done eating and started walking around their table by holding onto the chairs. When he saw that he wanted to get to Oldefar next, and there was no way to hold on to things to get to him, he let go, and took a step! He got to the very happy arms of his Oldefar.

We've seen this step repeated only once since then, but I'm sure that won't be the last of this mobile trend!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Yarn with a Death Wish

A few months back, I bought some great undyed wool yarn at a good price, with hopes of dying some for the purpose of making some cool wool covers for Nerdy Gerdy. With some quick internet searches, I found out that Koolaid is one of the best ways to dye wool yarn. Since that was pretty non-toxic, the kids were able to help me with the process.

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David and I did the first batch while Silje was at school. After unwinding a skein of thread (I finally figured out that it was best to wind it around something, like a cereal box) we simply put a bit of water in an old wide mouth jar, and then dipped in the yarn. It only took a minute or two, and then we were done.
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We put it in a 9x13 pan, and stuck it in a warm oven (200 degrees) for 10 minutes. That was to set the dye. Then we rinsed it gently in cold water, and set it out to dry. I just put it in our living room by the fireplace, and it dried quite nicely!

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When Silje got home we had to try the black cherry and grape flavors, ahem, I mean colors.
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First one color, and then the other. Besides getting our hands a bit colored for a few hours, it really wasn't messy at all!

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I think it's turning out pretty cool! Don't you think?

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Boys

I've had the blessing of being aunt to boys. Up until yesterday, of 3 boys: Jackson (my sister's), Kaeden (Knut's sister's) and Isaac (also Knut's sister's). Yesterday, Knut's brother his amazingly strong wife had identical twin boys:

Micaiah Jon
and
Gunnar James

They look so sweet on the mobile phone picture that we've seen, and our heart aches that it will be some time before we can hold them, as we don't live very close to them. Fortunately, though, both boys are healthy, and doing awesome. I think about the overwhelming joy and responsibility that one feels when the first child is born. I can't even imagine that times two.

I wonder if they will play games and jokes on people, and switch places. I wonder if one will be more dominate over the other. I wonder what their personalities will be like. I wonder how much sleep Jon and Kristin will get in the next few months. I can only imagine how competitive brothers that close could be.

Silje was quite excited to see the picture of them this morning. She just stared, and went on and on with how adorable they are. David looked at their picture and said "They're not big enough to play with yet," and went on with his morning. Elias has no idea.

To close this post, I'm going to post a few pictures of most of the boys (David, Kaeden, Isaac, and Elias) and of course with Silje too. They're a bit old, as we don't have this much snow anymore, but they're cute nonetheless!
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We all went sledding on Grandma and Grandpa's little hill down to the lake. The snow was melting so fast right below us that it was nearly impossible to get up and down the hill. I think each of us got stuck at some point! Here's David and Grandpa just before a small snowball fight.

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Knut and Elias. Elias is all about the daddy lately.

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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Post 292

For those of you counting until the 300 post giveaway, I thought I'd give you a heads up on where that was. I thought we were at 294, but when I looked back at my posts, there will a few drafts I needed to delete.

I think it's fair to say...the buttercup bag it is! I already have something special for that, and let me tell you, you will all LOVE IT! You'll have to wait and see what I'm talking about.

I haven't blogged much, because I've just been busy trying to get my house cleaned up, and trying to sew. I don't find posts about me cleaning too interesting, and although I love posting about my sewing, I hesitate in making this blog one big commercial for my store.

However, the store is doing as well as I'd hoped! I'm very excited about the sales I've made, and the interest I see. For the April 1st stocking, I've already finished 2 little girl aprons, and have a few perhaps mother/daughter sets to finish. I'm planning on making a bunch of buttercup bags for that as well, and my bamboo fleece should be in the mail any day now, and I'm going to sew up some more bamboo fitted diapers.

As for knitting, I've made 2 more wool shorties, and the 3rd is almost done. For the last one I'm making this month, I'm doing the shorties in a "linen stitch" which I'm told some people go gaga for in wool covers because of it's beauty, density, and utility. I had to buy a new set of needles for it, though, because I guess it's such a tight stitch that you need to go up 2 sizes. So I got an awesome pair of circular needles, and it has been taking forever (because of the different stitch) that I feel as though I could have finished 2 shorties by now! But last night I finished the body of it, and tried to split for the legs, and wouldn't you know, I couldn't do it with my 16" circular needles! I don't have double pointed needles in that size, so I guess it's back to the store. Although I've never seen double pointed needles in size 10, so I might have to search the internet. This pair seems to be never ending.

I'm planning some yarn embroidery on all 3 shorties that I'm adding. The aqua colored ones will get 2 shades of goldfish on them. The salmon colored ones will have something, but I'm not sure yet. Perhaps daisies. The gorgeous orange that I'm working on in the never-ending-linen-stitch-pair will get some black-eyed susan flowers...and it's going to be stunning. I hope.

I promise to show pictures when I'm done for most of the things, and they're ready for the store.

On the kid front, Silje has the pleasure of having her Great Auntie Ruth as her sub in kindergarten this week. She's so thrilled with that! Each day I am more and more thankful for her as she is such a help, and her desire to listen.

David seems to have an ever increasing desire to read as he's constantly attempting to read everything around him, and identify letters. He's starting to spend a bit more time drawing than he used to, and I'm hoping that he'll finally have some sort of interest in those things. I'm glad he won't be starting kindergarten this fall, though! He just misses the cutoff with his birthday being when it is, and I think that of the kids who would benefit from being almost 6 going into kindergarten, he would be one of them. He's smart and energetic, but classrooms are not made for boys like him, (they're made for girls like Silje) and I think he'll learn more at home for a bit.

Elias...still not walking. BUT he's getting closer, and he's starting to "chat" all the time! He says the most serious things to us...if only we could understand. He waves and says "BaBa". He says a handful of other words, all sounding like "Ba". He signs pretty frantically when he wants something. He knows "all done" and "milk" mostly. So far, for "more" he's found that screaming works sufficiently. He says "Dada" or "Da-ee" pretty clearly, and usually with quite a bit of enthusiasm. Instead of "Mama" he usually says "Mimi", which I think is funny. He also says "Me!" when he's mad, though, so I'm not sure if he's wanting me, or just standing up for himself.

So that's an update on us. I'll try to think of something more cohesive to write about soon. I've got 8ish more posts to think up before I can give away the buttercup bag!

Friday, March 5, 2010

300 post giveaway

I'm about to reach a milestone! After this, I'm only 6 posts away from 300 post on this blog. I think that's pretty cool, and calls for a giveaway. However, I'm not sure what you all would like. So, I thought I would put the question to you! What do you think I should do for a giveaway? I could do another apron (though it would probably be a different pattern, as I'm not sure I have time for another emmaline apron), or I could do a little girl apron, or I could do a buttercup bag (which I'm dying to try!) If I'm ambitious enough, I think I could pull off even a hot mama bag (although it wouldn't be designer fabric like the one in my store...although it would be VERY cute. Probably more like this one.) It could be a diaper or two, or maybe a knitted item? As you can see, I'm swamped for ideas. Please clue me in on what you've been lusting after, and I will do my best to oblige!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Preparing for Spring

Just as I type this, I'm hearing birds chirp loudly outside my kitchen window. That's the first time I've heard that in months. Spring must be just around the corner.

It's the first spring in awhile where Knut and I don't feel quite ready for it. This may surprise you with all the madness we've had this winter, but we're having too much fun in winter to have spring come just yet. Knut, especially, isn't quite ready to give up the skiing season, and walk into the roller-skiing season.

As for me, I'm not geared up for gardening yet. Normally, I get all excited and start seeds, and am really good with the garden until about the end of June, or mid-July. Somewhere in there I loose steam, and things go downhill pretty fast.

I have ordered and received my seeds, but I haven't started them yet. Hopefully it's not too late. Our 3 season porch has been so warm in the afternoons with the sun just beating on it, and it would have been perfect for seed growth the last few days. Hopefully I haven't missed any window.

Most of the seeds I start are for flowers, as on paper you can save so much money starting from seed, rather than buying plants every year. Last year my seeds did very very well, until about 2 weeks before I was ready to plant them, and I forgot them in a late frost, and they all died. Just like that. Weeks worth of work, gone in a night.

Although I'm not excited for it yet, I do have a plan because the reality is--gardening season will soon be here whether I like it or not. I need a survival plan. Last year I used dried grass clippings on a few rows of my vegi garden, and since they were dried, the grass seeds had died, and it actually worked quite well. Except the raking for hours and hours for a few days just to fill one row, and then not replenishing the grass when I needed to because it was during my "burned out from gardening" part of the summer.

This year, I've decided I'm going to spend the money, and get some sort of mulch to put inbetween the rows in the vegetable garden. What I liked so much about the dried grass last year was I could still work out there after a rain, even though it was so muddy--which really helped in not getting behind or slowed down with weeding because of the rain. It was awesome for weed control (that is, for the rows that got the mulch, for the time that the mulch was there.) If I can just get some help with the weed control, I'm hoping to push back my "burned out from gardening" date to as late as the middle to end of August. Baby steps.

My other plan is to really get the 2 older kids to help more this year. If I can institute a "15 minutes of nonstop weeding" rule/chore every morning, with the 3 of us, I think it would really help. Last year they weren't so keen on weeding, but they were both great help when it came to harvesting peas and green beans. If we can as a family, work for 15 minutes every morning, and then I work out there a bit while the kids are playing, combined with adding a mulch (I'm leaning towards hay/straw) I might be able to gain control.

I also need to figure out how to keep the deer away from my strawberry patch. I've been trying to get a strawberry patch going, and nothing really spreads with deer eating it up every night. I'm wondering if some sort of cage over the patch would help. I still need to ask Knut his opinion on that. I ordered a "patch starter" of strawberry plants to be delivered this spring. It's like 15 or 25 plants, and was at a great price through Park Seed. I'm determined to make it work this year.

Speaking of Park Seed, here are the seeds I ordered this year, as well as some of my lists:

Seeds for the flower garden:
Poppy (falling in love)
Marigold (moonstruck yellow...large yellow orbs)
Lisianthus (saphire pink and blue)
Geranium (Horizon Red Ice)
English Thyme
Chives
Coneflower (Echinacea bravado)
Aster Opus
Lisanthus (Cinderella Lime)
Lisanthus (Cinderella Pink)

Seeds for the vegi garden:
Tomato Park Razzleberry hybrid (came free with my order...so we'll see)

Tomato Margherita Hybrid (don't get any ideas! I believe this one was highly recommended for sauces and was determinate or indeterminate (the one where they should be able to be harvested at all the same time so that I'm not making tomato sauce all summer long, but in one or two weeks.) I wanted a roma tomato that they just developed that is great for sauces, and they developed it to have twice the lycopene in it...but it was already sold out.)

Organic Pepper Early Jalapeno (This is my first try with this. I thought with the number of peppers Knut eats we'd try to add this.)

Pepper (karma hybrid)

Pepper (gusto) (Really...I need to stop buying so many peppers for Knut's south beach diet. These WILL work this year!)

Tomato (beefy boy) this one should provide us with eating tomatoes all summer long.

I also ordered a red tomato mulch that I've been reading so much about. It's basically a bright red tarp that goes around the tomato plants. Not only is it great for weed control, but in testing, tomato plants respond to the color red--producing up to 30% more. Who knew? So you know I have to try it. As you can tell, if I do end up planting the razzelberry tomotoes that they sent along free...we may have tomatoes coming out our ears. I've yet to decide if I'm going to start that one, though.

Last year I was so pleased with the speghetti sauce that I definitely want a repeat of that, and I'm thinking about canning salsa this year for the first time.

Other than that, I'm praying that the cold hardy hydrangeas that we planted last spring have survived the winter, and I really really need to cut back the lilies and wildflowers (I don't know what they're called, but they're pretty) that have taken over the small garden on the side of the house by the three season porch. There's a gorgeous (snowball?) hydrangea back there that I know is aching to thrive, if it could just get some breathing room.

Knut and I didn't really cut back as many of those things last fall as we should have, so our work this spring may be more intensive.

I'm thinking about getting some wood chips for the the front flower garden. Again, something I'm going to have to think on more. It has always just been exposed soil.

Whew! I'm already feeling busy and I'm just sitting inside, looking at the snow outside! Time to give myself a pep talk, I might also make a chart and give myself stickers and a prize for completing stuff. Hey...whatever it takes!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Baby Month

We have left behind February, and have now entered Baby Month. I know, I know. You thought it was March. It's actually Baby Month. You see, my friend Carolyn (who the bag elephant bag was for) is having her little boy today, and Knut's brother's wife (Kristin) is having her twins this month. They won't let her go past March 16th (my birthday) so it's just a countdown there.

My sister, Heidi, will most likely have her twins this month.

Have you followed? That would be 4 nieces/nephews this month. And then there's Tony and Carolyn's baby arriving probably as I'm typing this (who will techniqually be my second-and-third-cousin-once-removed-in-law) who we'll probaby just say "like a nephew" for short. That sounds way more tight than "second-and-third-cousin-once-removed-in-law". Heck, "my friends' kid" sounds more tight than that!

Prepare to see many announcements, read many squeals, and see many giddy typos.

I'm so excited. SO SO excited. How many people, get to have twin nephews and twin nieces born in such a short time frame? I mean, with those stats, it's almost staggering that Knut and I don't have twins! Well, Silje and David felt like twins, so that will probably be it.

We currently have 3 nephews. By the end of the month, it's likely we'll have 5 nephews and 2 nieces. I'm still trying to wrap my head around it! It's so tough to think about because unfortunately, both Heidi and Kristin live states away, and we haven't been able to see them pregnant that much, except through the wonders of the internet. It will be so hard to know that they are here, and not hold them. To know that we may have to wait months to see them.

I think that the distance is one of the hardest aspects of life on the farm. To not be close to my sister, and to not know my sister in law as much as I wish I could. (She's one of those people where you know you'd be best friends if you could actually find time to get together with, but you never have the time?)

Anyway, I'm just rambling now. I just realized, after all the craziness of the Birkie, and the craziness of the store opening, that we're in March.

Ahem.

I mean Baby Month.

A Good Day

Thank you to everyone for all your support for my grand opening yesterday. I made a few sales, and over 900 unique people stopped by the store according to my tracker. That's so awesome!

I did get several phone calls and emails too, and for that I'm grateful. There was one phrase that I heard over and over again, that I feel I should explain, because honestly, I have nothing else to blog about this morning. I've been working on a deep post for a few weeks but it's no where near ready for publishing.

I feel the need, since so many of you have privately questioned me on this, to explain some of my business. I will not now, nor probably ever hire someone to help me sew. If I had a nickel for every time someone said that to me yesterday, I would have made more money on that than actually selling diapers.

Why? First off, I'm not setting out to be big. In fact, I don't want to be big. I'm scared to get too big. I've tried to go big with other things in the past and no matter how I sliced it, it got in the way of family life. I'm determined that my family will be the priority.

Second, I didn't invent modern cloth diapers as some of you have flattered me to suggest. I didn't invent snaps, PUL outers, or even the shape. Those have been around for at least a decade. Several moms have come up with their own pattern, and since they can't keep up with all the sewing, they contract out other sewers to sew from their pattern. I am one of those sewers. I'm not a pattern designer, I merely have permission to sew from some other woman's design. I have permission. Not me and 10 other seamstresses who work for me. In fact, if I were to have other people sew for me, it would be a breach of contract with the woman who designed and owns the "La Di Da" pattern.

The same goes for the knitting license I have. I cannot have other people knit for my store...just me. That's part of the deal. I do not have license to mass produce. Nor do I want one. I only have permission to sell my own work. If I were to come up with my own pattern for each of these some day, then maybe I would hand out licenses. The fact is, though, that I much more enjoy drafting patterns for simple things like aprons, and I don't find drafting a diaper pattern very appealing at all! I could see myself designing knitting patterns in the future, but I just don't have time for that right now, and I'm not about to give into the dilution that designing knit patterns is where the big money lies. First, I don't care about the big money, and second, there is some money there, just like there's some money in selling diapers.

I hope I don't sound like a spoiled rotten brat for saying I don't care about the big money. It's not that I wouldn't like more money. I would like a new kitchen, and maybe some furniture in my house. I'd like some new clothes, some designer shoes, not to mention a spending spree on sewing tools.

However...
I refuse to believe that money will make me happy. I'm already happy, and we're not rich, and I know rich people, and they're not any more happy than us...in fact many times they're miserable. Again, don't misunderstand. I believe that having a profitable business is responsible, and don't intend on throwing money away, or selling things for less than they're worth. It is not fair to my family for me to work without compensation, or throw our money away. I just won't simply put all my hopes and dreams and passion into making money. Those things are reserved for God, and what he has in store for me and my family.

I don't think making money is evil. In fact, I think in many cases it's responsible. I just think that the lie that "if I could just get a little bigger" "if I could just have a little more" "if I could just have this..." I would be happy.

I'm really happy with the way things are here. I'm happy with my business being small, and I love sewing. I mean really...if I were to hire someone (which I'm not going to right now, or perhaps ever) it would be to handle the shipping, and the website, and the finances. Sewing is the fun part so I'm not sure what would possess me to hire that out first.

I think it's the American mentality that bigger is always better, and you must always have more. I'm standing up and saying bigger is not better in many cases, and I would love for the things I make to sell, but when they run out, then I guess they're out. I will not stress if there are not enough of my diapers to go around. I believe that I am meant to stay at home with my kids and my husband to work, because that works for us. I think selling my business for a million dollars would be the ruin of us, and the thought scares me to death.

Maybe I'm wacko, but that's just me. Thought I should clarify all that.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Frosting

It's not a huge dream come true. It's not the hardest thing I've ever done. It's not what I've worked my whole life for. I am not the happiest I have ever been.

A dream come true would be being married to Knut. I know that sounds sappy, but I never dreamed I could be loved so much by a man who is so good. His wisdom and compassion and patience amazes me.

The hardest thing I've ever done would be giving birth...followed by 1,000 other mothering related things.

I've worked my whole life for such a time as this. My job, and my purpose lies first in honoring Christ, then honoring my spouse, and then being a mother to my children.

I'm not sure when the happiest I've ever been has been. Maybe it is now, but it wouldn't be because of this...although it is making me happy! As life fills with mouths to feed and endless questions to answer, and hugs and kisses multiplying, joy also abounds.

This....


is frosting on the cake. (Feel free to click on that image as much as you want.) It's so much fun. I'm so happy with it, and I'm so excited. I'm so thankful for my family for letting me do this. I've said it before, but sewing has become my therapy. It's my back rub, wind down, clear my head activity. To be able to do what I love is awesome. The chance to get paid instead of pay to do it is even better. So you are officially invited to go and enter my store. It's wide open.

There are a few wool items (about 5 or so) that I need to get pictures up for today, and will hopefully be done this morning. Other than that what's in there now, will be what there is until April 1st, when I'll add some new things to the boutique. Most likely it will be different items, colors, etc. I work on what gives me muse, and not necessarily replacing an exact item. I would hate for my therapy to turn into a repetitive chore, so that's the way it is.

To all my awesome blog readers, I'm offering a bit of frosting of your own. This will only be for the month of March, and I don't intend on doing discounts that often, as I'm hoping my prices are fair to begin with. You have all shown me such warm support though, that I just want to return the favor. If you enter GRAND15 at check out, you'll get 15% taken off your order. (This will not apply to the stash orders, as they are always discounted due to being bought in bulk.) Again, thank you all so much. I hope you have at least a fraction of the fun as I have had.

Please enjoy this frosting on the cake. You know I am.