Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A Little Mushroom-scape

     My most recent craft I have been learning is needle felting.  I love it because it takes very little experience to make something really fabulous.  It's also a great stress reliever.  Something about jabbing an object with a sharp needle over and over again, lets all the tension flow out.  Last week was VBS week for us, and although lots of fun, being the head snack lady is also kind of stressful. 
     That's when I decided to get out my wool and make a little something just for fun, even if it serves no practical purpose.

I love mushrooms, so when I saw these wonderful little mushroom scapes, I knew I had to try and recreate one.  Although mine is not near as fantastic, I do like it a lot.  The mushrooms are based on actual mushrooms that I've seen, but do not know the name. I need to get a mushroom field guide.


     I have been wanting a vegetable garden for years now, but simply do not have the space.  This year, a dear friend graciously offered up the use of her garden.  It's been a co-operative effort between four families, which has made the work load easier.  Some times it's difficult to go to some one else's house to garden, but it's also been a lot of fun.  This past week we reaped our first big harvest.  As you can see, some of the squash is a little past it's prime, but the kids got a kick out of the "monster" squash.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

July 4th!

     Last year the Fourth was a bit of a let down because it rained all day, (I think it rained every day last summer) and we didn't really do anything.  This year made up for it though, as it was a very fun filled Independence Day. 
     The day before, we all tie dyed t-shirts in red and blue.  I forgot to wear gloves, and so my hands were very blue for the Fourth. In fact, they are still a little blue, and probably will be tomorrow for church. 
      We started the day off with a picnic in the mountains.  Everyone is huddled up because it is sooo cold.  (Every one looks very cute in their tie dyed shirts. Even I wore one, although I am not a tie dye wearing person, normally.)
Every time we go up to the parkway, I forget how cold it is, and every time I say, "Next time I will bring jackets." But of course I forget, and we freeze.  After we ate and were able to move around some, it was better.  Of course you have to have
watermelon when you're on a picnic, even if it makes you that much colder than you already are. 

Eating a wrap in the sunshine makes you feel better, though.
     The highlight of our picnic was getting to see a red squirrel for the first time.  It was so little, at first we though it was a baby grey squirrel, but after closer inspection I realized it was a red squirrel.  It has to be the cutest animal ever.  I did get a picture, but it didn't turn out well enough to bother posting here. 
     After the picnic, (and taking a nap) the kids had strawberry ice cream with blueberries as a special treat. 
      As it got close to dusk, we went down to the lake to watch the fireworks. 
The Fourth of July Story:  While we were waiting for it to get dark, we lounged on a quilt and ate hot dogs, while I read Alicia Dagliesh's The Fourth of July Story.  I always try to put the focus on why we celebrate different holidays, as oppose to making it all about the celebrations. 

When the kids got tired of sitting, they played silly made up games with each other and danced to the music.  Finally, the sky turned dark, and it was time for the fireworks to start. When the first few explosions began, frightened ducks skimmed across the lake like torpedoes.  Abriel freaked out, and made a bee line for her Daddy, while Samuel hunkered behind me, shaking violently.  He said he was scared the sparks were going to fall on him.  Poor little guy.  After I explained how there was no way the sparks would hit us, he calmed down. Then his ever inquisitive mind began questioning everything.  "Can the fireworks reach the moon? Can they hit the the stars? Does God see the fireworks? How do they go up and then explode out? What makes the sound?  Why are they different colors?"  And on, and on, and on.  His brain never turns off.
     In between answering his questions as best as I could, I got to watch the fireworks.  The best part about fireworks at the lake is that you get to see two displays.  One in the air, and another reflected in water.  Simply beautiful.