Thank you for visiting my blog; it is an exciting venture for me and I hope this will become a forum for moms and homemakers of all types to share stories, frustrations, and triumphs. There will be recipes, pictures of my latest and greatest soap creations, and anything I think will be interesting to Enthusiastic Homemakers.....
Friday, December 31, 2010
I am an extremely clumsy Mama. Extremely. I have tripped and fallen at car washes, in parking lots, in parks, at home, and ironically; after I left a doctors appointment. When I was younger, this was mostly due to the 5 inch heels I wore as casually as tennis shoes; then becoming a Mama changed my center of gravity and I became able to trip and fall at the slightest provocation, or on nothing at all (or maybe I've just been truly clumsy all along?). So today started out much the same as any busy weekday, and I was zipping along, hopped up on black coffee and ambition, preparing for a visit from my little sister, when I hurriedly rushed across the living room and found myself sprawled across the floor in a most undignified manner. One of the ever-present toys on the floor was hiding underneath a pillow, and when I tried to step over it, I miscalculated and slipped. I ended up with a cruelly wrenched ankle, that looks absolutely fine while still throbbing in staccato. James came home early after I discovered it's all but impossible to carry on as usual with a baby on my hip, hopping on one foot, while trying not to say bad words. After three ibuprofen and a glass of wine, the throbbing eased sufficiently to allow me to give my sister a lesson on making espresso, then James took four of our five boys to the store; allowing me to sit and pore over vintage patterns on etsy and ebay, which has become my favorite pastime lately!
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
I've been complaining for weeks now about the headaches I've been getting from staring at my computer screen too much. I actually am supposed to wear glasses, but a certain Dorian I know broke my glasses about two years ago, and I've been waiting until I was "qualified" by my insurance to get a new pair of frames. My philosophy is that is you're going to wear glasses, you should wear glasses, so I've been looking around for a pair to make me feel less blah about wearing them. I just haven't found anything unblah-worthy. I have a picture in my head of what I want, but finding them in my price range has been impossible. I was chatting with my cousin today about her awesome vintage-y glasses; that she got at SEARS, no less! and she suggested buying vintage frames. Honestly, it never occurred to me! I knew, of course, that people buy and sell vintage frames all the time, but assumed that since obviously my insurance won't cover them, that it would be impossible for me. Well, I was looking on etsy, and lo and behold found the perfect, beautiful, MAUVE frames WITH RHINESTONES, at such a reasonable price! I still have to check with my eye doctor to see if he's willing to put insurance-covered lenses in 55 year old frames...trifles! I'm so thrilled, I get to have my cake and eat it too! Rhinestones and good vision! What a lucky gal!http://www.etsy.com/listing/37714989/vintage-eye-glasses-1950s-horn-rimmed?utm_source=Facebook
Monday, December 27, 2010
I woke up this morning feeling very excited about the week ahead, and wanting a "do-over". We had several not-so-great things happen this weekend, along with a very sad thing; which of course, made me sad; but also impressed on me the preciousness of life and the importance of living every day, not just to its fullest, but living up to our best self every day. I feel that I haven't been doing that lately, that although I have been waking up every morning giving it my all, there are several very important areas that I have fallen down quite severely in. I hope that all the yucky things that made this weekend, well, not great; will be a catalyst for improving those areas. I'm determined to make this week better, by being more present and patient for my children, and making my currently messy house neat and peaceful. I also need to take better care of myself, allowing myself the time to; imagine this...sit down?! In that spirit, I will be posting some items and pictures today, on a much lighter note, I promise! Ok, now that I'm done being Debbie Downer, onward and upward!
Sunday, December 26, 2010
After spending two late nights looking at thousands of vintage sewing patterns until the wee hours (and wanting them all). I found one that fits my body, budget, and imagination. It is a lovely full-skirted dress from the 1960's, and the same wonderful shop also had 5 yards of vintage black-and-white check fabric for an extraordinarily reasonable price. This shop has some of the most reasonably priced vintage patterns I have seen, since many of the ones I find are too expensive to buy when you consider the cost of the materials added in, and this has prevented me from indulging my love of vintage up to now, leaving me to settle with reproductions that can sometimes be found for a dollar at certain times of the year. The shop owner Donna, is also a lovely woman who discounted the shipping costs and even reduced the cost of the fabric when learning of my interest! Thanks, Donna! If any of you are vintage sew-y types, be sure to check out her shop, she has the best selection of 50's and 60's items. I look forward to posting pictures of my marvelous new purchase when it arrives, as well as the finished product, which I hope will do it justice! http://www.etsy.com/shop/VintageTreasureHuntn
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Well, I was quite proud of myself and feeling very smug today when I posted last; all about homemade ricotta, soap, lotion, etc. So, I made ricotta; not very sucessfully, I think I got overconfident and need to take a look at the recipe again. The lotion making went better, I was afraid to try, I mean, who makes their own lotion; and isn't this why they can charge so much for a bottle of lotion? It was absurdly easy. The only drawback is that the average person is not likely to have emulsifying wax and a block of shea butter on hand, nor an immersion blender they're willing to devote entirely to the task; whereas, since I am a soapmaker, such things are easily obtained. So that was the major success of my day. The low point? Realizing I had failed to use tags for my lovely, thoughtful, last post (at least I thought it was). Oh well, live and learn. And I spent entirely too long today immersed in looking at vintage patterns on etsy; dreaming of seeing myself in one of those creations. I might as well just go ahead and add sewing back into my list of "crazes"; why not? I did learn, to my relief; that indeed, women who wore my size not only existed in the 1960's, they appeared to be hale and hearty and wearing pretty dresses just the same as the women with 24-inch waistlines. What a relief!
This is a quote I've been thinking about lately; it seems Winston Churchill was channelling a stay-at-home-mother in this. Being a mother is constantly feeling on the brink of disaster; and there are contant "failures" big and small. If I've failed to finish the laundry, clean the kitchen before the next meal, failed to finally get my bed made before my husband gets home, these all seem like "failures". The biggest FAILURE, and the one I seem to struggle with most, is the failure to keep that enthusiasm. That's why I titled my blog the way I did, because really, staying enthusiastic makes all the little annoyances and failures of every day seem meaningless. An enthusiastic Mama makes her family happy, and that's what I'm here for. So, even though I may be far from perfect in this, the ability to realize my errors and get back on that proverbial horse, and stay passionate and enthusiastic about what I do, regardless of how today or yesterday or next Thursday went, is what Winston Churchill meant. So as I sip my strong black coffee, I'm already plotting what I will be doing today, soapmaking, lotion making, homemade lasagna with homemade ricotta, and heck, I may even finish one of my 84,000 unfinished crocheting projects!
Thursday, December 23, 2010
This is a momenteous occasion. The confirmed Luddite, the technology phobe; the girl who swore she would never, ever, ever have a computer, so help me God, unless it were to save the life of my own son.....is now blogging on a COMPUTER.....It may have taken 57 times longer than it should have, it may have required a glass of wine, and caused a headache; but....IT IS DONE. I hope that I will actually write some things that are of interest, but if not, I have no problem speaking to myself, every day, for the rest of my life. I hope to have many posts about the trials and tribulations (and successes) of being a thrifty mama, a soapmaker, and the "good wife" sung about in the 1978 hit "Brandy", for which I was named....(my parents deny it, but COME ON).