Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The power of the written word

I have discovered a great truth this week. No matter how small you are, the published word carries an authority that your mother's voice doesn't.

Couple of years ago young sir got himself stuck in a pitch black toilet in a toddler group. Only for couple of minutes and after the tears had dried away he seemed quite happy. Perhaps unsurprisingly a few weeks after that he started wanting to have a light on at night time. No amount of assurance. kisses. cuddly toys or explaining would help. It didn't matter how many guardian angels I'd promise he'd have on his bedside - the light would have to be on. All night. If I sneaked in and turned it off (not that I would ever do such a thing...) it sure enough would be on when we woke up.

Finally, young sir has graciously told me I am allowed to turn the light off. Not because he has listened to my wonderful reasoning on why the light should not be on at night but because of a book. Yes, a book! A book that tells him that leaving the night on over night will use the same amount of energy than warming up water for 100 cups of tea!

Maybe it was the enormousness of the number or the fact that he can relate to the action of making a cup of tea but he took the advice in. So from now on, young sir sleeps in the dark. To save energy. He even reminds me to turn the light off so I can make 100 cups of tea.

Not that I am particularly keen to make a hundred cups of tea, one will do just fine thank you. I am however wondering about finding out how much self publishing books costs as it might turn out to be a handy way of getting my message across to young sir in years to come if talking doesn't work ;)

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Burst of craftiness

I love wooden floors. I love rugs. I love rugs on wooden floors. Some time ago I found this lovely company that makes the most adorable braided rugs. I wanted one. I still want one or maybe two...

Meanwhile I decided to try to make one. In the summer cottage we have these little braided round rugs made out of old coffee bags of all things made lovingly long long time ago some unknown relative. So if someone could make a rug like that donkeys years ago without the help of a sewing machine or internet, I was determined that I could make one (with the help of the sewing machine and the internet).  

Step 1. Cutting up the yarn:
I discovered this tutorial from the wondrous world of pinterest on how to make yarn from old t-shirts
So step number one was to cut up lots (=5) of old t-shirts - one evening gone.

Step 2. Braiding:
Next I spent another jolly evening braiding them all together. I'd like to say that decided to have navy in all of the braids to give some uniformity to the rug but the truth is that I had two navy t-shirts and one of each beige, white and baby blue so having blue in all of the braids was a way of making sure I didn't get left with mountainous pile of blue yarn!

Step 3:
Sewing it all together. Pick the braid you want to start with and just go for it. Double over the tail of the braid, zigzag together on your widest zigzag and then just keep going around and around...for a long long time...

And voila - three evenings later you have a braided rug :) 

My tension is slightly wonky at places so the rug doesn't fly completely flat in the middle but I am guessing with few months of jumping on by young sir it will be nicely stretched and forever flat. It is about doormat size. I'd like to make a bigger one for the hall but not sure if I have enough rejected t-shirts to make one...

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Patience is a virtue...

...or so the saying goes anyway. If that's the case, I have been suffering from bouts of virtueless recently! I used to think I was a patient person. I would have probably gone as far as saying being patient is one of my strengths...

...or was before young sir arrived. I am sure he thinks part of his mission on this earth is to test my patience. And more often than not I find myself falling short of what I would like to be. I can happily wait for a dough to rise for an hour but somehow doodling on the way to school for few minutes can drive me potty. The cold spell has not helped my lack of patience as there are many mounts of snow to be explored!

I am starting to think that patience is a virtue that grows by choices we make. In any situation we have the choice to be patient or impatient. We don't just miraculously become patient, we choose be patient and by the choices we make our patience grows or doesn't grow. I'm preaching to myself here ;)

Patience is a fruit of the spirit. So the logic follows if you have the spirit in you, you also have patience in you. Yet we also need to cultivate that fruit by the choices we make otherwise it stays as a seed with the potential of a fruit rather than actual fruit in our lives.

My challenge for the this month is to learn to be more patient. My plan of action so far is counting to ten rather than automatically shouting 'hop hop'* when young sir stops to examine the nth stick or rock on the way to school. Other suggestions on how to grow my patience are very gratefully received.

* hurry up

Thursday, January 10, 2013

To be a grown up or not...

We had a lovely visit to Finland before Christmas for my little sister's wedding. After the wedding we stayed with one of my other little sisters for few days. (Yes, I do probably hold the award for most little sisters anyone I know!) Hanna is super talented*, cooking, baking, photography, jewellery making - you name it, she can do it!

We'd thought for a while it would be nice to have some family photos taken so whilst staying with Hanna and her lovely husband we took advantage of her talent and had a little photo shoot in the snow.

Lovely idea wasn't it...only young sir was more interested in messing about in the snow than posing. So one of the pics out of the shoot was this one - where I look about ready to strangle young sir and he is completely oblivious to my frustration and just flashes the loveliest cheeky smile he can to the camera!

My sister got some lovely shots. Maybe I should have joined young sir in messing about in the snow rather than tried to be grown up and serious and focus on posing, not getting snow in my shoes etc...sometimes I forget so easily that in the end of the day most things don't matter, only I somehow end up thinking that they do!

*so are my other sisters, all eight of them - just for the record :)