The kids painted up a storm the other afternoon as a very brief rain storm rolled in. That extra energy in the air gave us the push to get creative. I decided to set up shop in my son's room at a little table. The kids loved painting in a new space. We usually paint at the dining room or kitchen tables. They decided to name this new painting studio their clubhouse.
The initial plan was to go out for a walk in the garden to collect leaves and bits of nature, and then to draw and paint nature studies inside using watercolors. The kids quickly abandoned that plan and painted anything and everything. They became a little factory as they churned out painting after painting.
Klaus the cat was invited in to share in the festivities. Klaus loved the extra attention. We let him play with the grass skirt, his favorite toy, other than his pet otter.
And then the most amazing thing happened the following morning... I woke up to this:
My husband and I took the children raspberry picking this weekend. We tried to be there the minute the farm opened to avoid the hot, hot day, but still we realized about fifteen minutes into the gathering that it was just too hot. The kids were not pleased and wouldn't shelter under the narrow shadow of the vines. Little miss has developed a fear of grass ever since our mama wolf spider encounter, she was an enormous spider carrying what seemed like hundreds and hundreds of tiny baby spiders on her back. I'm sorry for sharing that image. Nevertheless, we brought home entirely too many raspberries. And as you know, I'm not much of a baker, but I'm thinking about whipping up one of these babies this afternoon.
This whole raspberry fiasco reminds me of the time I took my six-week-old baby boy and my two-year-old daughter peach picking on a hot summer day in an orchard in Pennsylvania... so long ago.
These long, hot summer days are beginning to feel a bit overwhelming... especially because my little guy has some sort of summer cold and he needs to stay home and rest. We're feeling a bit stir crazy. At least the little girl has doll camp. She's loving it so much. So far she's made paper dolls, wooden dolls of our family and mermaids. I can't wait to see the entire collection at the end of the week. It must be so much fun to teach "doll camp".
I really haven't been doing much of anything except the usual cooking, dishes, drinks, dishes, cooking, laundry, bath, tidy, dishes, mop up enormous mess routine. I've been squeezing in a bit of crochet, but it's slow going and I never seem to have more than five minutes to sit still. I think I'll make more of an effort to ignore the laundry and the dishes today.
I finally finished the two squares for week 4 of Blair'sgranny square sampler afghan. I think they turned out pretty well. I got a bit distracted and confused and added an extra row to three of the granny circles in this week's assignment. So I started over and finished three correctly last night. I need to catch up before the new assignment comes out tomorrow.
I did try out this yummy recipe from Everyday Food the other night, and successfully made some shrimp chowder. It was super quick and easy... I love the chowders. The soup would have been much better, I'm sure, with the fresh basil the recipe called for, but my basil plants died off a few weeks back. Except that I've just noticed that the Thai basil is making a come back and has grown three whole leaves! Yay.
Oh, and I think I'd mentioned before that I ordered the birdie garland embroidery pattern from Charlotte of House Wren Studio. It arrived a few days ago wrapped in pretty packaging and with a sweet note. I was so pleased to discover that she'd also included another patten of a sweet little house called "Barney Park" with my two children drawn into the image. Thank you, Charlotte! I can't wait to get started. If you have a chance, you should check out her blog and her shop. She's off to teach a course in France soon, and I'm looking forward to seeing her photos.
The kids and I spent a lovely morning with friends wandering through Ladew Gardens last week. The gardens were so green and filled with beautiful flowers. The sky was enormous and blue and the weather was perfect. The kids had the most fun searching for frogs and tiny tadpoles in the many ponds, which kept the moms on their toes. Luckily no one fell in.
Baltimore had a Star-Spangled Sailabration this weekend that included a visit from the tall ships and air shows. We decided to head down to the harbor for a quick visit early Sunday morning. Our usual parking spots were filled so we parked near the Visionary Art Museum. We had the most fun looking at the sculptures and art outside the museum, that is, until someone who worked there ran out to tell us not to touch the walls. Oops.
The Inner Harbor was packed with lines and lines of people. We walked past a couple tall ships but quickly decided the crowds were too overwhelming so we fled the city and spent the rest of the afternoon on a boat.
The kids finished their first week of swim class. Yay! He's swimming for much longer distances across the pool and she's happily jumping off the diving board. He's totally in love with his teacher and sobbed when he missed the chance to say goodbye. We chased her down and reassured him that he'll see her next week.
We finally ripped up the old red carpet in the playroom. I'd discovered that there was old linoleum underneath and figured that would be better than living with awful carpet... it was like a big lint brush that attracted and clung to all debris. It's smelled bad, too. We used an inexpensive rug that we bought for the basement in the last house. It's working for now and the room seems so much lighter and more open. Unfortunately, we've also discovered that part of the sub-floor is rotting... it was built with particle board. So, we'll have to figure out a new solution soon.
This pink crochet blanket is coming along. I need to figure out a way to join them all together. It's so refreshing to work with pink.
And, my daughter and I sewed this little quilt together a few weeks ago. She loved having the chance to use the big sewing machine and she did really well with sewing straight. I put the project on hold while I looked for a solid color for the back. I finally found some pretty blue cotton and I just need to do the binding...