Monday, June 27, 2011

Toddler FUN at home!

I have a toddler... 
When you hear those words, a rush of thoughts run through your head..
" Aaaaawwww.... ooohhhh.... woooow...., " hahaha.
Well, I have a toddler... I stare at him every day and still ask myself: where... I mean WHERE does he get all that energy from????????? ( sometimes I even get jealous, and wish I could figure out how to get some of that for me!!! whatever he's eating, I want it too!) there came a point in which I was running out of ideas on how to keep him entertained and happy, and still be able to get something done around the house!

So I talked to my sister Ines... She's like my other mom... she is the one who took care of me when my mom had to work two jobs to feed the four of us kids and wasn't at home all day... I look up to my sister and I absolutely LOVE her...

So anyways, she told me what she would do with me when I was a toddler and, later on, with her own son.

Her advice was to make the little one feel productive and that he's a part of the house. To get him involved in the house chores and make him feel he's awesome at it... to get creative and be ready for it to get messy! 

So, if you need ideas to get your toddler busy, here are four things that work like magic for me! 

#1 Do dishes:

It doesn't take much! Just give him a couple of clean plastic plates, cups, etc and a clean sponge ( I always put a drop of detergent because he loves bubbles, but he already knows not to put his little hands in his mouth or eyes).Voila!

#2 Wash his tennis shoes:

It's pretty much the same concept. I got him a small brush and put his converses in warm water with a tiny bit of detergent. HE LOVED IT! he was brushing away and playing with the bubbles. After he was done (which was a WHILE later), I finished the job and we had a happy child and clean shoes! (Although my kitchen floor became the Mississippi river =D

#3 Flour car tracks:

Ok, this one will get messy no matter what. But it's so worth it! I take his little wooden table outside, bring a bunch of cars, and make mountains of flour... he can spend an entire afternoon out there playing with them!! Of course, by the end of it, your child looks like he's been attacked by a gang of flour packs, but hey! the smile in his face is priceless!!!

#4 Gardening:

I have three words for this one: FUN FUN FUN! It's not hard at all, they love the "digging in the dirt" part of it, and by having to water their plants every day, it gives them a sense of responsibility. My mom planted some flowers in our garden. Every day, Josiah would grab his watering bucket and ask me to fill it so that he could water the plants "abu" planted with him. EVERY DAY. I mean, I don't even water my garden every day!. That's how much he loved it!

My kids are little, and I feel like there's so much I still need to learn!! But I love the journey, I love the smiles, giggles and cooes. In the end, it's all worth it!

ps: what do you (or did you) do to keep your little ones busy?


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Mercede: a warrior child


Today I came across this quote from C.S. Lewis:

Love is not an affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained

When I read this, it hit my heart. It reminded me that LOVE is not just a romantic word or a vague desire that every human being experiences throughout life. LOVE is not just a noun, but is also a verb, an ACTION. This is the reason behind this blog. When I heard my sister in law Tracey tell me the story of Mercede, I couldn't wait to share it with you. Even though I don't personally know this gorgeous girl, you can't help but fall in love with those sweet brown eyes and that beautiful smile. She's facing a battle against leukemia at the age of 9, and needs all the love and support we can give. For this reason, I invite you to go to Tracey's blog and learn more about Mercede. Tracey will be visiting her and her family on a regular basis to show love and support, to deliver some goodies, etc. She will also be posting updates on how Mercede is doing. In her blog, she also has a DONATE button, where you could help her family out during this time of great need. If you'd like to send a gift, Mercede loves crafts, so scrapbook materials would be perfect for her while she's in bed.

Let's stand together by Merecede's side. Let's hold her hands and walk with her through this season of her life. Let's show her that she's not alone, but that there are many people outside those four walls of her hospital room that are thinking of her, praying for her, giving to her even from a distance. There's nothing more comforting for the heart and soul than pure, overwhelming, inconditional LOVE...
If you would like more information about Mercede, please leave a comment at Tracey's blog.

Thank you so much! Have a lovely Sunday...


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

FIVE THINGS I love about summer

Hey! Happy Summer! Let's start this wonderful season by telling what are the 5 things you love the MOST about summer! Here's my list:

#1 The shinning SUN! You can never get enough vitamin D!



#2: Bathing suit shopping (of course, anthropologie's are my favs...not that I can afford them, but they're still my fav!!)

#3 Water parks + pools  + beach trips with the hub and kiddos

#4: Yard sales



5# Outdoor adventures

... lake fun

... endless trips to the park

... late night ice creams

I <3 me some SUMMER! What about you? what are your fav 5 things??


Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day!

Hi there!

I hope all daddies out there had a wonderful father's day! To be a father is one of the highest callings that a man can have. During father's day, we often hear what sons and daughters think about their daddies, how much they admire them, the lessons that they learned from them, etc. Today, I wanted to do something different, so I invited a daddy to share his thoughts on "fatherhood" (we don't hear that concept very often, hu?). So here's my very first blog guest: Andrew Stein, my lovely husband and daddy of 2, sharing his thoughts on his role in this family. Enjoy!

Whether it be positive or negative, we get the majority of our shaping from our parents. A son learns what to look for in a woman from his mom and how to treat that woman from his dad. When we have children of our own, all our personal expectation of how we will parent, either positively or negatively, come from that upbringing. I was one so fortunate to have a great father. He would give or do anything to see us succeed. He taught me what it meant to be a dad, a leader in the home. Then came my turn.

 Josias is born-2009

Abigail Liv is born-2011

When all that teaching is behind you, a real family ahead of you and there you are, in the in between, about to meet this new reality, it's like waking from a dream about flying, only to hit the hardwood beneath your bed. Those camping trips you grew up with seem too expensive, the outside games together too exhausting after working all day, and on and on. The dad I always awaited in myself doesn't always show up for work.

Being the perfect dad does not come natural. It isn't something most of us are born with. We, as humans, don't come out with this figured out. But I can honestly say, all the sacrifice, all the effort, and all the fun once I decide to go for it, is nothing less than totally worth it. 

All campfires later on in life could never replace the ones with Dad as a little boy. A teenager wouldn't ever ask his friends, "Why does the fire dance like that?" but a 5-year-old son would. And whether the answer was right or not, I needed to know, and Dad was there too tell me. Just like when we sat in front of the ocean, I thought it never ended. He told me there were other countries beyond what we could see. When I asked if I could walk to them, he explained how continents work. I was 3 and I've never forgotten the facts, nor that moment in the sand with Daddy being there to satisfy my curiosity.

Today, Josias asked me, "What's this?" roughly 37 times. Each one is an opportunity to give him a memory, to satisfy his curiosity, and let Daddy make him proud.

Happy Father's day, every day.

* Thanks to Shane Timm, our friend and photographer, for your amazing shots!*

Monday, June 13, 2011

Sun kissed

I was looking for a quick project to get started with. Something easy and quick to make during my little buddies nap time. That's when I saw these really cute flower rings and just went for it! My purple Gap shirt was the victim of my spur of creativity. I just couldn't wait, though! She served a higher purpose, I guess =D ... So I did it, and this is what came out:

   For the second round, I picked a different kind of fabric, this time a mustard yellow cotton. I got so carried away that I ended up making a necklace and ring set!

  I already made some notes on things I'd like to change in them. New ideas keep coming and I'm not holding back this time! I definitely cannot wait for the next set to come!


Sunday, muddy sun day!

This Sunday was pretty delightful, starting with the fact that Andrew was off work (he works most Sunday's) and it was a gorgeous day outside! We haven't had a nice family Sunday in a while, so I cherished every moment of it! This is what our day looked like:

 Josiah discovered how FUN mud is!!! He took the hose and made a puddle

... then he would place his soccer ball in it and KICK really hard!

He did that with all his soccer balls...

Then he would refill his puddle and start all over again!

Meanwhile, Papi (daddy) did some gardening and collected the first fruits of our (mostly his =) labor! I'm so thrilled about our little veggies and I can't wait to eat them!! (Although part of me just wants to frame them and keep them forever! )

Abi took naps pretty much all day long... that's what Sundays are for, right?? 

What did I do? LAUNDRY... and made some Argentine empanadas for dinner!! We had a great friend over for dinner, and spent a delightful evening together!
I made almost 30... this is our leftover:

ONE!!!! ... which I'm saving for my little buddy J when he wakes up from his nap =D

How was you Sunday?


Sunday, June 12, 2011

... and we're off! =D

Hi there! Well, this is it... After 29847394000 attempts, I'm finally publishing my little hole-in-the-wall blog! This blog is about the in's and out's of being a mom, wife and homemaker. It also reflects my love for art. I've always loved art in its many forms: music, pottery, painting, designing, drawing, etc.I can spend so much time just staring at pretty things!!! From clothes to home decor, I <3 anything and everything that is just pretty!! But after I became "babe" and later on "mami" (mommy), I gave the right side of my brain a way-too-long break. Well, I miss creating. I want to learn how to create all sorts of cute little things so that I can make a warm, loving home for my hubby and my little ones. In every small detail, I just want them to see how much I love them, how they mean the world to me, how much I care for them!(Sigh).

That's where you, my dearest reader, can become my teacher,my companion, my mentor, my adviser. I'm not an expert or anything remotely close to that. To be quite honest, I recently got my very first glue gun EVER!! haha. But this is the reason why I'm writing this blog: to start a journey of self discovery, to see how far I can go, to not be bound by fear of failure but to step up and just give it a shot... I mean, why not, right? LIKE A LITTLE CLOUD IN THE SKY, I'M READY TO SEE WHERE THE WINDS OF CHANGE WILL TAKE ME! I'm open to hear your suggestions and eager to read your comments. I'm thrilled to know that I'm not alone in this journey, and I surely hope you enjoy of this blog as much as I already do! WELCOME!