Thursday, October 31, 2013

Make My Week - Goodbye Kindy

Yesterday we said our final ever goodbye to kindy... (to be honest I am intentionally not engaging with the emotions of this week - in a couple of weeks post exam, final assignment, school start, birthday party... then I will sit a spend the good part of a day in tears!)

We made necklaces for the kindy teachers.

and a bag of bean bags for the children to use.

and tomorrow a little boy will unwrap a hand made book bag from his mama.

It's a very big week around here. Big change in the sails for this mama, final assignment due, party to organise, exam to study for.... apologies if I'm not as visit-y as usual.

Joining in with less overwhelmed mamas here:

 Show & Tell Thursday's
Love you more than a whole day to study xxxx

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

We Recommend - Books About Christmas

I'm fairly sure I did a similar post to this one last year.... but it's late and I can't be bothered going back to check. Once again my laziness is highlighted :o)

Today I'm going to highlight 6 books that are lovely to read and essentially feature characters from the story of the birth of Jesus in some way that is beautiful, sweet and not too-churchy (if that makes sense). I think they are the type most people would enjoy sharing with their little people during the Christmas season.

If you want to add to your Christmas collection and would like to add some that are of the Bethlehem story can I recommend these as a really good start point that will delight and enchant. 

One of our traditions is that I buy the boys a Christmas book each year (not always Jesus based) and we have our Christmas stories out over the month of December to get us in the mood.

The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski

This book is the story of a grumpy woodcarver who is commissioned to remake a wooden nativity for a widow and her son and the process which softens Jonathan Toomey and connects him with his own grief. The son's description of each of the characters of the nativity and how they felt is so beautiful.

The 3 Trees by Elena Pasquali

Not strictly a Christmas book this fable style story follows the destiny of 3 trees who had lofty wishes and how each of their hopes are realised in being part of the Jesus story - including one becoming the manger in which he slept.

Little Owl and the Star by Mary Murphy

By the author of the Maisy books. Little owl follows the star and comes across a beautiful baby who fills him with great delight. Very sweet and simple - a perfect introduction to the characters.

The Song of the Stars by Sally Lloyd-Jones

This is my new favourite and one I will be ordering the boys this year. All of creation passes the message from animals to trees 'it's time, it's time' and what most of the world misses the whole of creation rejoices over. Poetic and with gorgeous, 'old master' style illustrations this book is one I want for me.

The Nativity by Julie Vivas

Julie's illustrations are very distinctive and this story is pretty much a straight telling of the Biblical narrative in simple language accompanied by her wonderful, slightly dreamy illustrations. A great choice if you'd like to give your kids the bible story but you aren't sure where to start. I picked this one up at an op-shop this year and tucked it away.

Jesus' Christmas Party by Nicholas Allan
This story is delightful and humorous. The innkeeper gets one disruption after another by Mary and Joseph and their succession of visitors until he has absolutely had enough and that's when the party really kicks off. Funny and engaging the traditional story from a different perspective. Also captures the gorgeousness of new life.

FYI - links provided for your shopping assistance sadly I make nothing from them :o) 

Do you have a favourite Christmas story? 

We Recommend for Christmas 
our posts about genuinely lovely things

Create Hope Inspire

Thanks for your recommendations. Button code on the right.

Love you more than a book in the post xxxx

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Wardrobe Tuesday

I haven't worn this dress for ages it feels like and it's nice to be back in it. It's the kind of dress that gets a lot of comments (including from a sweet boy working at the supermarket) and the shoes - I have seen grown women swoon over them. :o)

Although I should have worn my thunderpants because it was a windy day!!

The dress is made from an old curtain and an old sheet, which just goes to show that while The Atlas was wearing shorts and a t-shirt when we went to church together, his outfit was probably worth more.

Underneath I have a new frilled petticoat in red - so now I have 2 in my collection but they are different I promise!

The Atlas did the photo shoot for me instead of my usual self timer mode. As we started to take the photos he said to me 'now love if you're feeling nervous just imagine the camera man is in the nude' - that man, he cracks me up.

So what's your cheapest ensemble??

Joining in on Wednesday with the lovely Kelly at Wardrobe Weds - just click the button on the right.

Love you more than a frilly petticoat xxxx

Monday, October 28, 2013


Family of Pirates! Arrgh!

Morning Antics this week

these 2 crack me up.

love you more than a pirate patch xxxx

B.M.W.B - Birthday Philosophy

At the end of this week we have a very, very special birthday.

When my children were less than 5 we always celebrated with cake and family but turning 5 marks a transition into 'drop off parties' where a set number of friends are invited over to celebrate.

I like celebrations and parties are no different. I'm not pin worthy certainly but I love the idea of a theme and changing up the games to suit the theme. To be honest I don't know that the kids notice much, but I do and it brings me pleasure to do it.

I don't think birthday parties are about extravagant amounts of spending and I feel very uncomfortable with the idea people might spend a lot on my child. My mantra to the boys is 'they might not bring a present and that doesn't matter because they are coming to celebrate with you because you are special to them.'

and when they go to parties, 'there might not be cake or games or something to take home and you are not to ask for these things. They invited you to celebrate with them and that's why you are going.' (I hope and pray my child is never the one to say - this is boring, when are we having games....)

All that said - I love my boys so much and I want them to know I want to celebrate them. I plan their birthday parties because I am anticipating creating a wonderful couple of hours for them to know they are worth the effort to me. They are worth celebrating and it is worth celebrating every wonderful year we share our lives together.

Families all do that in different ways but I think (and hope) for all the philosophy is the same - its not about being impressive, keeping up with others, proving what a wonderful parent you are or how many friends your children have - it's about celebrating the gift of each other.

and that is always worth the effort!

Becoming the Mama I want to be is about taking time to enjoy the journey of parenting, to honour it's value and to hopefully inspire and encourage each other. 

Create Hope Inspire

Simple. Achievable. Intentional: becoming the mama I want to be

Button code on the right if you want it

love you more than the perfectly timed blowing the candles out photo xxxx

Friday, October 25, 2013

Spreading the Word

If you are face-book-ey you might want to look at this wonderful auction of beautiful things made by lovely people.

Check it out okay?

Have a wonderful Friday.

Love you more than a long weekend xxx


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Make My Week - Necklaces

I find having a couple of things on hand in the present box an essential (especially at this time of year!).

Recently I made some more of these necklaces from beautiful origami paper and an old TinTin comic.

The one below will be for sale to raise money for this lovely cause.

Hows your making going? Are you feeling all make-y at the moment or more like you have a dog riding around on your head?

Joining in here:
 Show & Tell Thursday's

Love you more than a present box with stuff in it. xxxx

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

We Recommend - Cheap to Make for Families

I promised you some 'no-sew' family gifts at some point. Today I'm showing you a couple of simple ideas that you still have time to make before Christmas.

We have some families we like to do a little something for at Christmas but I like to keep them super cheap because a) I am super cheap - you probably already know this and b) then there isn't any pressure for reciprocating or spending money on us.

Travel Bingo:
If you can draw you could make your own wonderful version of this. If you are me clip art and colouring in pencils are your friend. I've made 4 cards in each set so that there is some variation. Print, colour, cut out laminate and you are good to go. If I am feeling generous I would also add a whiteboard marker and small brushed cotton cloth for each child.
pre-laminated version

Whenever children travel in our car they pick these up and comment on them.

I tend to save ours until we are a good hour or half hour into our journey and I can't bear one more round of eye-spy (I am that lazy). I often have a wee bag of treats to accompany the completion of the card too.

If you can't be bothered putting your own together but you want some flick me an email or leave a comment and I will email you my ones.

Photo ABC:

My sister made both my boys an A,B,C photo book for their first birthday. She combined photos and art (she can draw) to make them both a book that has been SO well loved.

You could easily put together one of these books on any photo printing site that does photo books too. Write the alphabet out and allocate something/one to each person. Take photos that are meaningful to the children (their holiday batch, them in a tent, a favourite toy, grandparents...) for each letter of the alphabet and play around.

Magnetic Story Board:

Another great idea from Leonie, who made my boys a nativity board last year. Take a large tray and draw/trace/copy the pictures from a favourite story. Laminate the pictures and stick adhesive magnets to the back. My boys have loved this so much and I mean to make more characters so they can tell more stories.

Reindeer Noses:
Super small and sweet. The boys love making these and they are a lovely, affordable gesture when you want to do something. Just throw a bag of jaffas and a couple of bags of chocolate covered peanuts in the trolley and you're most of the way there.

So do you have any cheap ideas that require not too much skill to make for family gifts? Do you ever make/buy gifts for other families or is it relations only? Do you buy gifts for your extended family?

Nosey me??

We Recommend for Christmas 
our posts about genuinely lovely things

Create Hope Inspire

Thanks for your recommendations. Button code on the right.

Love you more than half a bag of left over jaffas xxxx

Monday, October 21, 2013


Beautiful boys playing together with a little friend in the sunshine.

Stopping to acknowledge again the gift these 2 are in my life and record these wonderful days.

Love you more than a ball that gets hit back xxx

B.M.W.B - Saying it With Chalk

I like the thought that we share ourselves with the world and that we choose what kind of message that is.

I want the boys to grow up with a sense of being bringers of joy.

So we took our chalk (which we often use to decorate the driveway) out onto our street. I didn't give the boys much direction we just spoke about bringing joy to people and giving them something to smile about.

Some of the things were rather entertaining, along with the spelling.

We enjoyed ourselves.

A neighbour stopped, we chatted. The boys made sure everyone knew where we lived and where they could get chalk if they wanted it.... I guess none of us are very good at secrecy!

Becoming the Mama I want to be is about taking time to enjoy the journey of parenting, to honour it's value and to hopefully inspire and encourage each other. 

Create Hope Inspire

Simple. Achievable. Intentional: becoming the mama I want to be

Button code on the right if you want it

Love you more than a box of new chalk xxxx