Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Review

When I was working on a littly diddy to go on the back of our Christmas Cards this year, I asked Cam what he did and he couldn't think of anything. Not that it was a boing year, only that pillaging in rubbish, dying your hands unnatural colors on 6 separate occasions, and attending other people's weddings just don't usually make it onto lists of important events in one's life. Consider it a "building year" if you must. However you think of it, the rehashing begins (as usual) in:

Cam wrote his blog post of the year when he was a nutt-o and went camping in the rain. Kim finished decorating Wes' room, just in time for him to start crawling. We decided that we should make an effort to be a little classier, a resolution that lasted until...

When I discovered what a gold mine our dumpster is and dyed my hands blue. Cam put the fire alarm back up, and we built a pantry. Wes miraculously managed to avoid spraypaint, dye, smoke, and splinters respectively.

Wes was in his first talent show and (on a related note) in his first youtube video! He also took his first flight when we zipped back to Utah for Cam's bestie's wedding. I recruited some child labor to help me paint my bookshelf. We got our hands dirty as we began...

Working in the garden. I made a rug (in two parts) and micromanaged my sister from across the pond. We house-sat most of the month for a family a few blocks away-- a job that came with two large dogs, a bunny, oh... and two pre-teens. Wes enjoyed the added attention, living in a zoo, and his new freedom in walking.

Cam had his white coat ceremony! Wes loved riding the MAX train and playing in the fountains downtown. We saw a solar eclipse thanks to my mom owning eclipse glasses? We went on a whale tour for Cam's birthday and ended up with some chubby cheeks instead.

We learned about the importance of quality residential restroom architecture, and discovered my butter-knife skills. Wes slept through upwards of 76 trombones and discovered cup holders. He also slept and sang with Cam on our road trip to California for an engine block BBQ and a little wedding reception. I died some doilies and my hands peach in preparation for...

Cam's little sister's wedding that I managed AND micromanaged. Both. Now that Wes is 1 he learned how to jump, ride, and slide.  We finally figured out where we're going on rotations! Planning was immediately shirked to enjoy the sunshine.

We enjoyed our bountiful harvest (Wes most of all). Cam finally had a 3 week break from school, which we enjoyed by traveling to the coast and Port Angeles. Wes touched a llama.

I chalked up another year at the sidewalk art festival and made a sweet headboard to finish our bedroom. We canned, pickled, and dried. Cam began his last year of classes ever. Wesley had a cold followed by an ear infection.

We flew to Colorado for Cam's older sister's wedding (which I still managed to chocolate dip oreos and paint some burlap for). I made a soccer ball cake with Cam's geometry assistance. We carved gigantic pumpkins from our garden. To this day, Wes still talks about the big pumpkins on the porch. Wes had another cold, and an ear infection.

Wes learned what a pirate is, how to cook, and began his quest to rid our house of bugs. We learned that Wes has an allergy to penicillin.  I threw a baby shower for a good friend. Cam picked up a little job at school fitting lenses to frames.

Because I clearly didn't make enough stuff this year, I participated in a craft fair opened an etsy store and designed christmas cards. Cam plowed through finals, and challenged my family to a nerf war. Wes is all set to be the fastest bug hunter in the west, and with any luck will be more helpful in the kitchen.

That's year 4 down! We're looking forward to 3 moves, 4 road trips, and Sheila dying somewhere in North Dakota in the next year, so hopefully we'll have even more good stuff to report!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Wes' Christmas

Remember last month when I posted about Wesley's two favorite games? I had a picture of him playing kitchen, which requires him getting out all the pots and pans and then we pretend he's made something fabulous. However, I didn't have a picture of him bug hunting, which I was scolded for repeatedly. So, here he is a couple weeks ago teaching the fine art of bug hunting to his best bud Ross. 

In the last one he's saying bug. He says it with his nose plugged because he's an odd cookie and that's the sign he made up for bug (and mug incidentally).

Anyway, we had Santa get him a little kitchen for Christmas, so he could make a mess with his own pots and pans, and I might have some left over for the making of real food. Here he is with it first thing Christmas morning.
Check out the mini spatula, isn't it cute? On the shelf below Wesley's hand are a couple of miniature hot pads that Cam crocheted that match the ones I use. He loved it so much that he completely ignored the stack of presents next to him there. He held on to a little plastic knife all morning and used it to open the rest of his presents. 

Cam's mom was awesome enough to get him some plastic vegetables that he cut up with his little plastic knife over and over all day.
*Sidenote, this photo was taken with my sweet new 55mm f/1.8 lens that Cam got me that stayed within our $25 trying-to-be-prudent budget... not. Sorry, but I'm still trying to figure out how to focus with such a small depth of field.

My mom also made a super score for getting Wes a proper bug hunter:

Be afraid dirt specs. He's not showing any mercy.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Cards

I made Christmas cards for real this year! Don't be sad if you don't get one in the mail, it turns out we actually don't have anyone's address, so feel free to print this out and put it on your fridge... or mantle... or dart board.

And as an added bonus I finally got to take over my family's card! Since we weren't ever all in the same place at the same same time this year, a family picture didn't ever happen. But no matter! In case you needed added proof that my family is awesome, they let me do this:

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Craft Fair

Last weekend I did my first ever craft fair! A friend of mine who is big time in the local craft market suggested that they were looking for vendors... but I was a little nervous to take on a booth alone, so I roped five of my friends into doing it with me.

I probably spent more time on making sure our stuff had cute little tags than I did on my actual items. That's what these things are about anyway right?

Sadly the only pictures I have are from my friend's iPad... because I totally spaced taking any.

Those of you who have been following our blog for awhile probably recognize the sailboat mobile from last year (I made a couple new ones, and some butterfly ones as well).  Based on your kind comments, I also explored more into shoe-building and came up with these babies:

There were more, but you get the idea.

It was fun, but as these things go... we didn't sell everything. Since Wes is a boy and is (by Cam's mandate) not allowed to wear fuzzy boots, we decided to do an experiment and put some of the stuff that was left over in an Etsy store.  So, tell everyone you know. please.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


So I've actually had my Christmas list ready for some months now (it was totally ready the day after my birthday). We keep our ______ (birthday, Christmas, etc.) lists in a google doc for easy updates and family access (with images and links to the proper make/model).

I thought it was funny how indicative our lists are of what we've been up to lately, so I thought I would share them with you.
Cam's list:
1. Nexus 7 - His current obsession. Ask him what you should get for anyone, that's what he'll say.
2. Cool looking shoes
3. Drill bit with countersink
4. Spray bottles - so maybe our house can get clean
5. Backpack rain cover - Oregon
6. A Blowgun

Kim's List:
1. 50mm f/1.8 lens
2. Serger
3. Silhouette Cameo
4. Colorful fabric scraps
5. A mini muffin pan - because Wes will eat anything we call a "cupcake"
6. A staplegun
7. Rubber gloves - so that maybe my hands won't turn green, blue, or orange next year.
8. A seahorse

Wesley's List 
1. A booster seat - Because he's decided he's too cool for the high chair.
2. Kitchen Gear - that doesn't make dents in the cupboard (or my toes)
3. "Melmo" - Because we've only found 5 full episodes on youtube and I can quote them all.
4. Puzzles

Wes' list is shorter because he's not into material things like we are. And he's generally unable to voice desires less immediate than "cu-cake" and "Melmo."

Saturday, November 17, 2012

43 ways to say rain

Here's a pop quiz for those of you that have lived in the Northwest:

What do you call rain that's lighter than a shower, but definitely still has actual substance.

A sprinkle.

So that's what my buddy Mandy and I (with more than a little help from the men in our lives) threw today for our good friend Stacey who is having a little girl. She already has a boy Wesley's age, so she didn't need a whole baby shower... just a little sprinkle of pink in her life.

Everyone asked where I got the umbrellas, the thing is that I owned them all already. I bought them for when we lived in Utah, because no one uses umbrellas in Oregon. It's part of life, and we don't melt. 

A shout out to Mandy's super-cute fruit bouquet and veggie bites (crescent rolls in a mini muffin pan + cream cheese and ranch mix + broccoli, peppers, and other tasties)  

 Looking at our guest list, we realized we had a ton of crafty people, so rather than playing games we decided to put everyone to work making hair-bows (in teams so we could learn cool stuff from each other).

My teammate Amy and I found a cute model for our creation. I'm sure it would have been cute on Wes to, but his head is getting too big.

5 people in one picture! 

Sunday, November 11, 2012


I know this looks like a kid banging around pots and pans, but it's a lot bigger than that. Wes started using his imagination this week!

In this picture, he's making me lunch. He takes out all the pots, tells me they're "hot", stirs them a bit with random utensils, and then puts the lids on. Sometimes he pretends to dump things back and forth. I discovered that I can't give him a snack or a drink while he's "cooking" because it will end up dumped in a skillet and smashed around with the whisk. Pictured: whisking his drink of water and some cheese.

When he decides it's done, he puts a hot-pad on the table and sets (with some assistance) the pot on top of it. Then we say a prayer over it and pretend to eat with spoons "Mmmmm!"

His other favorite game to play is bug hunt.

A couple weeks ago, a fly got in our house and Wes chased it around. I was eager to have it gone, so I grabbed a spatula and gave one to Wes, and like crazy people we chased it around banging on any surface it landed on. Wes thought that was about the most fun thing that happened... so now, anytime he spots a bug he gets a totally serious look on his face and runs into the kitchen demanding a spatula while holding his nose with one hand (the sign he made up for bug) and yelling "a BUH a BUH!"

Just this week he started playing bug hunt for pretend (which I must admit it's hard to tell sometimes if he's really seen one or not). He does everything just the same demanding a spatula, and then when I hand it to him, he does a funny bent-knee stalk over to his bookshelf (where he's decided the bugs hide out) and bangs the wall until he's satisfied that the imaginary bugs are smashed into a pulp. Then he runs to the window. Repeat. Then back to the bookshelf. And then the window.

On the plus side, I have seen fewer bugs in my house (they're scared out of their shorts). I've also had fewer clean pots.

Friday, November 2, 2012

More pumpkins... and pirates

Wes and I got invited to a pumpkin patch by some cute girls. Clearly we didn't need the pumpkins... but of course you can't turn down an offer like that. Especially when the girls are so cute!

We discovered that the pumpkin patch we went to had some extra special features... most notably a pirate ship:

The ship drove around the pumpkin patch while the pirate captain told cheesy pirate jokes. At one point it stopped and we got to shoot off a tennis-ball cannon. Wes was the only child under 5 brave enough (read: that knew what was going on and NEEDED to participate).

And now for your viewing pleasure, I will post pictures of Wes playing in the playhouse with adorable girls... interspersed with pirate jokes.

Why did the pirate buy an eyepatch?
He didn't have enough for an iPad.

Why can't pirates read?
Because they only know two letters: Aye! and Arrrrrr!

What kind of grades do pirates get in school?
 High Seas!

What be a pirates' favorite vegetable? 
 An ARRRty-choke!

What do ye say to a pirate with one leg?
Hop aboard matey!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Giant Pumpkins

So at one point I mentioned these monstrosities that we had growing in our garden:
(photo taken mid-august)

Well, their time finally came. Cam could barely lift them up, let alone get them to the house, so we loaded them into the wheelbarrow to get them from our garden to the front porch. 

Wes was happy to help get out the goop. Unfortunately, he couldn't reach the bottom of the pumpkin.

Something we learned: big pumpkins are RIDICULOUSLY hard to carve. The rind on mine was more than an inch and a half thick. It took so long to chisel them out that Wes got bored of the goop, and we had to take shifts carving because he was ready to go play somewhere else. It also took two candles and a lot of scraping them out to be bright enough to even see my gradient work. 
Our apartment manager called this afternoon and we won the complex pumpkin carving contest! We only carved these three days ago, so I think everyone voted before we had them carved (when we just had two massively large pumpkins sitting on our porch.)

P.S.  Wanna see something cute?

I decided I needed a tutu... so everyone had to deal with a theme that allowed me to do so.
 Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Family History

For the last couple months I've been working on a project with my Grandpa to digitize several shoeboxes of old family slides.

Grandpa got a slide scanner and scanned them all in. But a lot of them were flipped, dusty, washed out or otherwise not great pictures.  From there, my job was to use photoshop and try to recover the image the best that I could.

It's been funny to me to see what was in there. For example:

I have no idea when or where this llama is... but I loved that it made the cut all these years!

You actually couldn't take this picture today without being shot down.

The funniest pictures to me are the ones that I know who's in the picture even though there is no way I was there. This is probably my favorite example. On the right, My dad at Christmas in 1969 or 1970. How do I know? Because on the left is my little brother at roughly the same age.

For our family Google+ Hangout  a couple weeks ago, I shared this picture from the 1950's and we played a fun game called "how many relatives can you name?" Of course, my mom being the family-history-know-it-all won, but it was funny to see who we could figure out based on "because he's never in pictures, so it must be him" and logic like that.

So there. Family history is fun and you should do it.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Soccer Cake

My little brother's soccer league had a huge auction this weekend as a fundraiser. Among other things, each team had to supply "at least one yummy or unique cake to be auctioned off. There is a reward for the team that pulls the highest price for their cake."

My family is totally awesome in the fact that they have faith in my abilities to do things with absolutely no prior evidence that I'll be able to pull it off. It works well because generally I have the same opinion. 

So my dad told the coach I could do it. Since we knew we'd have a room of soccer fans, we decided to cater to our audience. Of course, if you've ever been in soccer/liked soccer/had a kid in soccer, I'm sure you've discovered that soccer ball geometry is ridiculously complicated. That's why I had Cam math it out. 

Here are the patterns he made me. I decorated the other two layers in the time it took to make them. 

I set it up and then left, so I have yet to hear if they won yet. I'm crossing my fingers, because while I was there only one other cake wasn't housed in a 9x9 baking pan.

Monday, October 15, 2012


We flew to Colorado this weekend to see Cam's older sister get married to a pretty awesome guy that we totally approve of.

As it turns out, Wes loves flying, (or more accurately, he loves people-movers, seeing airplanes, people in orange vests driving baggage carts, flight attendants, and apple juice). 
Emphasis on the people-movers. 

He's also a big fan of getting all dressed up. He did the funniest thing while we were getting ready to go to the wedding. He found my straightener in my suitcase and with a totally serious face started straightening my hair (because clearly it needed help). He did it for at least 5 minutes and worked his way around like a pro. An observant kid.

Cam and his brother(s) also enjoyed themselves. This was during the reception. And that's a dessert platter.
Yeah, I know... there was a bride a groom there too, but they paid someone to take pictures of them, so naturally I don't have any to show you. 

On the flight home we got stuck in the last row in the  aisle and middle seats, but Wes didn't mind. Turns out that's prime location for flirting with the ladies. He got himself two packages of goldfish on a flight that "didn't serve snacks." For some reason the flight attendants also gave him two cups to eat them out of. Which meant all goldfish went into one cup, and he then dumped them back and forth until nearly all of them fell on the floor. I did what I could, but I bet the stewardess was still cursing his cuteness while she picked up all those smashed goldfish.