Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Low Mom on the Totem Pole

Mothers' Day 2012
Mothers’ Day is supposed to be a day of honoring and pampering good ol’ mom. As a new mother, you anxiously await that first special Mothers’ Day when you will be among the cherished women of the world. But wait! You might now be a mom, but you are probably also a daughter. You are probably even a grand-daughter to at least one beloved woman. Don’t forget that most new moms are also daughters-in-law. Yep, that means grand-daughters-in-law too. You might even be a great-grand-daughter-in-law!  I won’t get into the “Step” thing. I think you get it. What does this mean to the new mom? You are the “Low Mom on the Totem Pole.”
If your little one is in preschool and is under 10, you just might get a card made at school. You might get breakfast in bed, but probably cold because baby, toddler, kid needed something changed, fixed, etc. before it can be delivered. Those that made you a mother will want to make you feel special. However….by the time Mothers’ Day arrives, you are probably exhausted after trying to honor all of the women in your life who hold the title of Mother. Will your Mom, Nana, Granny, Grams, etc. and their in-law counterparts fully appreciate how long it took you to paint baby’s feet to imprint upon those tote bags that you personalized with puffy paint? When they visit the house, will they notice the splashed blue splotch of paint on the wall that you missed? They won’t have to know that the lovely throw on the sofa serves to cover up the baby barf stain from when you propped baby up to take that special photo for their cards. Don’t think about the fact that you’ll be cleaning the house again tomorrow, even if you didn’t have to do the dishes today.
Why doesn’t your sister, brother, etc. host the Mothers’ Day brunch? Why don’t you just go to a restaurant? Because you volunteered, knowing it would be easier than being in a crowded restaurant with a baby, toddler, bored kid, etc. Because you can have all sides of the family come to you instead of having to go all over town. Because it is better than a long car ride that throws off naptime (for you, not the kids) and can test your sanity with crying, arguing, “I’m bored,”or hearing The Wiggles greatest hits again. Because single adults in the family often expect their own mother to invite them over. Because you really do want to make sure all the mothers you love can relax and enjoy the day.
But here’s the good part: Being the Low Mom on the Totem Pole is the best spot to be. One day you’ll find that you’ve risen up the totem pole as your kids have risen in height. Instead of needing a break from the kids, you’ll be hoping they come to visit. Being Low Mom also means you have all of those experienced women to help you, support you, advise you. Each in their own way will love you and give you hope that you actually can survive childhood, the teen years, and their adulthood.. As years pass, you’ll realize you’re using their recipes or cleaning tip.  When you are closer to the top of the totem pole, it’s bittersweet to realize how much you miss all of the mothers and grandmothers who aren’t here anymore. You’ll realize how much you’ve grown yourself.  If you didn’t remember to make your own set of baby footprints and cards then, you will now be in possession of the ones you gave those special women. E-cards just aren’t the same and you’ll be glad you put pen to that now faded paper.
So here’s to the Low Moms on the Totem Pole. You hold us old-moms up and keep us going. May all of you remember to take time to honor yourselves – just pick another day than Mothers’ Day.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Leia's Crocheted Dress

Leia's dress.
Later added the LED battery powered light strip to make it light up!
Mostly double crochet.

Baby Luna's Crocheted Dress

Double crochet yoke.
Treble cross? for ribbon to go through.
Solomon's Knot for skirt.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Yet Another project to avoid cleaning the house....

Crocheters without borders-  Crochet Necklaces
Making chains and adding beads is really easy (as long as I have reading glasses!)
My usual free form crochet and stash of beads and jewelry pieces turned into these:

Super glued a shell to a bail, added some broken chain pieces,
a bit of crocheted thread (ichord or sc onto foundation),
a clasp, and a couple beads.

Crochet thread, single crochet on foundation. When ready add bead, sc, ch 2, sk 2st and repeat. until you have as many beads as you want. Then sc on the rest of the foundation again.

Another project to avoid cleaning the house.....


Crochet Away the day...

A pattern I could actually follow without improvising!
 Easy and beautiful! Just grouping double crochets for the most part. 
I just added some buttons so it could also be turned into an infinity scarf. Mine is obviously not vanilla.

 Made with Red Heart yarn that somebody gave me or from that box at a garage sale or ???

Vanilla Bean Scarf from Fiber Flux Blog

Lots of gorgeous, free, and easy to follow patterns on this site!

Link to the pattern here >   Fiber Flux Vanilla Bean Scarf   

My version here: 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

A New Eagle Scout Poem

As a brand new Cub Scout with your uniforms of blue,
You couldn’t have foreseen all the great things you would do.
You made new friends, ran and played, and made cars out of wood.
You did it to have fun, but still you learned all that you should.

As new boy scouts with your friends you faced something new.
You couldn’t have foreseen all the great things you could do.
You built fires, pitched tents, made new friends, and did deeds that were good.
You were still having fun, but now learned everything you could.

As boy leaders you were tested with challenges anew.
You couldn’t have foreseen young boys looking up to you.
You led by example and taught them all you knew
You still had fun while it mattered, and learned much more as you grew.

As teen scouts, life began to pull you all in different ways,
You couldn’t have foreseen how easy it would be to stray.
But troop and friends and family helped you push on as a whole.
It wasn’t always as much fun, but you were dedicated to the goal.

As young men, you’re now Eagle Scouts, standing here so tall,
You couldn’t have foreseen how proud you’ve made us all.
You met each step as something more than just requirements to do.
You’ll keep true to the lessons this journey has taught you.
You truly took each lesson to heart, you’re Eagles through and through.
You know we foresee a great future for you.

By Nancy Mest Doyle

Troop 773 Laguna Niguel, Ca
for JCC and PCE
January 4, 2013

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Nuts about Nasturtiums

Nasturtiums have taken over my yard, but that's a good thing!

update: January 2014 - It's supposed to be Winter here in So Calif, but my nasturtiums are already starting to explode!  So I'm actually trying to plan ahead and not waste any of these beauties!!!

Lots of things to do with nasturtiums
Beautiful nasturtiums grow all over and just take care of themselves and reseed like crazy. The more I pick, the more seem to grow! They are so beautiful and tasty too. I'm trying together all the ideas I've found.

Eating them up:
  • The leaves and stems are peppery like a radish. I just pick them and eat them.
  • Use the flowers to top a salad.
  • Stuff flowers with guacamole or goat cheese or a cream cheese mix to use as appetizers
  • Cut up stems and flowers and use like basil or chives to mix with mayonaise.
  • Cut up the flowers and add too softened butter to make a pretty and zesty spread.
  • Make Nasturium Pesto from stems and leaves.
  • Pickle the seed pods like capers
  • Make nasturtium infused wine vinegar dressing
  • Make nasturtium jelly or preserves - sweet or spicy.
  • Nasturtium vodka!
  • Nasturtium Cookies!!!!
  • Nasturtium tea

Here are a some sources for recipes:

Getting well with them
Nasturtiums supposedly have strong antibacterial, antiseptic properties.
Use in a compress for wounds
Some people drink the tea to ward off infections
Hair loss????

Showing them off:
I fill a mason jar 2/3 full then float some on top. With the lid on I don't have to worry about spilling water. Be sure to change the water every day.
Dry and press them in the microwave - it keeps the colors better. They are hard to press with a book because they are so full of water.
Mod Podge the dried flowers to anything.
Take lots of close up photos of the flowers, the light coming through the jar of flowers, etc.