diy

Double Pallet Platform Bed

For the past few months I have been on the hunt for a platform bed for my oldest son.  I have searched the internet, looked at countless furniture stores and researched plenty of DIY sites. 

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Finally I found plans for a platform bed that my son liked and my brother who is awesome with woodworking agreed to build it.  In the plans the original builder noted that this bed would have to be built inside the room it would be placed in and that all bolts would need to be removed to move the bed.  Since we’ll be moving in a few weeks my brother agreed to build it at our new house.  However, the more I thought about it the less committal I felt.

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A Purple Flower; Making My Mother’s Day

 

book - lisa joRecently a blog post by Lisa-Jo Baker, author of Surprised By Motherhood, caught my eye.  The title of this particular post – How Not To Be Disappointed This Mother’s Day.  In this article Lisa-Jo discusses what we as mothers EXPECT; her point on Motherhood being more than a 24 hour period once a year is made clear.  She offers eleven ideas to celebrate and honor Mother’s Day by giving to others without the expectation of receiving.  Lisa-Jo ends with “Because the thing is, we mother because we’re called to it. We mother because it’s a gift.  We mother because God trusted us with these kids. We mother because we can’t not.”

This article really had me thinking.  Thinking of the moments I had been disappointed  without realizing that what I was really doing was putting an expectation on someone, some thing, or some day.  Years ago I read The Five Love Languages and discovered my first love language is quality time and my secondary language is acts of service.  So therefore I naturally want to give others those things that I like to receive sometimes forgetting to consider their love language and how they might like to receive a gift.  Without fail my little guy and I make a homemade creation for my husband each holiday.  In my love language time equates to love therefore it is important to me to teach my little guy this type of giving.

While my husband is a perfect match for me and pretty amazing at a lot of things he’s not so much the “sit down and create something crafty with a three year old type”.  He’s more of a “little blue boxes create smiles so I’m on my way to Tiffany’s after bath time the night before the gift is needed type”.   Thanks to Lisa-Jo Baker’s blog I decided to take matters into my own hands this Mother’s Day.  One day this past week when the time of the day arrived in which I teach my sweet boy a little something & we create with our hands I announced to him that on this day we were going to make his Momma something.  We discussed Mother’s Day and Father’s Day and how we give love, hugs, kisses and hand made creations.  And to my delight he was all-in!  He immediately responded “My make you a ‘fow-yer’!  A purple ‘fow-yer’ and ‘well-wo’ sun!!  Pwease momma.”  (He sometimes refers to himself as “my”.)

aa-photo(24)We started with a white sheet of card stock that my tot painted blue with a paintbrush.  After his nap when the blue paint had dried he used his knuckles and fingertips to create a yellow sun, his finger tips to splotch a stem, “weaves”, & grass, and his hand to create my purple flower.  It’s beautiful.  My first “homemade for me (by my youngest son) creation.”  I framed it!  I love how enthusiastically my little guy agreed to give to his momma.  I love the act of love & time we shared creating it, and I love the smile on my tot’s face and the sincerity in his voice when he announced “All done!  Momma woves purple fow-yers.”  He’s right.  I love my Mother’s Day gift.  Though the real gift in all of this is that I was chosen to be his & his “Bubby’s” momma and that is the greatest gift I will ever receive.

Happy Mother’s Day to you, and to all Mommas and Step Moms, Adopted Moms, Grandmas, Deployed Mommys & Mr Moms, Mothers-in-Law, Aunties and Surrogate Moms, and to all Women who Nurture.  I hope that you know and feel love on Mother’s Day and everyday.
– T

 

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No Sand Box? No Problem. Sand fun!

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At our last house we had a wood sandbox complete with an attached blue & white striped umbrella.  It was quite the gathering spot for my morning tea with my little man as well as play dates with his friends.   Unfortunately the wood didn’t hold up so well and neither did the umbrella in the valley of the sun.  Our current home is on a hillside on stilts and rather than a grassy back yard we have two separate large wood decks.  We have a beautiful view that my older son’s friend refers to as a “casual forest” and outside of missing the grass and the sandbox we really enjoy our days and evenings on the deck amidst the Eucalyptus trees.

My little guy loves building sand castles, roads, and sand race tracks.  He spends the majority of his time during our days at the beach playing in the sand while ignoring the ocean waves and water play that his big brother partakes in.  To bring some sand castles and road construction into our daily life I came up with a very simple solution.  A tub o’ sand.  That’s it.  A tub + a bag of sand = FUN.

This perfect solution sits out on the deck off of our family room and serves as my tot’s chosen play place several times throughout each day.  Because there is a lid there is no worry that cats, squirrels or anything uninvited will find it’s way into the sand.  The cost is just at ten dollars to purchase the tub & sand and most importantly, this tub o’ sand serves as learning and sensory time too.  Remove the buckets and trucks, then burry magnet letters off of the refrigerator and you have a place for your child to work on fine motor skills while sifting through the sand (shovels optional).  As the letters are uncovered discuss the letter, sounds it makes, and objects that begin with that letter.  Do the same with wooden puzzle pieces – shapes, farm animals, numbers, etc.  Depending on the age of your child they can guess what is in their hand before pulling it out of the sand and revealing the object.  Sand play is a great sensory activity for developing fine motor skills and makes for a fun learning time for little ones.

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Here’s to days on the beach with sand between your toes and days on the deck with sand between your fingers!
– T

Note:  On rainy days that we stay indoors we fill a tub with colored rice to enjoy sensory play by burying objects in rice – if you put a sheet down first the rice mess is easily collected.  Enjoy!

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