Feb 27, 2012

Play Time

Here are a few photos and a video from all the fun times we've had this month.

Grandma Teri came for a visit.

And the shenanigans didn't stop the whole time.

We went to Boise Fry Company for Luke's birthday dinner. Porter consumed a copious amount of fries with a side of yogurt and a burger.

I think the blue eyes are gonna stick.

Luke and Porter have been practicing their mad tambourine skills.

Photo shoot!

Feb 18, 2012

Garden: Education

Last month my sister in law, Anna (or Nanna as Porter calls her), moved back to Boise. We love her so much and she's already upgraded our lives in the few weeks she's been back. We've been snowshoeing, to the theater, and to AMAZING gardening classes at Edwards Greenhouse. The bonus is they're free!

The education series has been on Saturday mornings inside the actual greenhouse. It's warm, bright, moist and always blows my mind. A perfect place to spend cold, and sometimes dreary, weekend mornings. So far we've been to a class on Pruning Shrubs and Flower Arranging. I know, Pruning and Arranging is mind blowing? I thought they would be a tad boring too, but the folks teaching the classes are funny, knowledgeable and creative. 

What I took away from the classes so far has been very insightful and I used what I learned pruning my front yard this week. I think what I gained philosophically is even better though. When pruning shrubs I learned that you don't have to prune them, but if you do, they should be graceful. Which automatically made me think of a shrub ballet. Incidentally, I have a visual reference from a Momix dance performance that Anna and I went to recently, which also blew my mind. It looks like this:

From the flower arranging class I learned about building arrangements. More importantly, I  came away with the idea that flowers should be kept looking like natural flowers. This is an aesthetic that I can get behind. Since I'm pruning this month, I can use what I'm cutting from my trees and shrubs and use them as structural pieces in arrangements, and how to use bulb flowers in bouquets. 

Matt Johnson, the florist teaching, spoke of flowers and arranging them in the most lovely way, with the best and most appropriate adjectives ever. We also had some good giggles, because when Matt added just the right flower to an arrangement the entire class would gasp in unison. Watching already beautiful flowers turn into grand arrangements was a little like watching how a magic trick is performed. It's been a truly enlightening experience and I look forward to next weeks class on raised beds. Oh man, I love to garden.

The roses are being held in place by the branches, which are tethered together and to the  pussy willow.

Floating flowers.

Using bulb flowers.

After going to the class I went downtown to pick up lunch and happened upon this lovely topiary outside of Tully's. I saw it and immediately thought that it so closely mirrored what I had just learned. Low and behold, it was from Edwards Greenhouse. 
Some random cute pictures from one of our walks this week. Since it's winter and all the shrubs and trees have no leaves we've been observing how they were pruned. I now have a greater appreciation for what graceful pruning looks like, and vow to never mindlessly hack away at a tree or shrub again. Visually, a poorly pruned tree/shrub makes me a little sad. Porter is also learning to appreciate the beauty in nature from a perspective closer to the ground.

Soon enough I'll have his cart filled with gardening supplies and putting this boy to work in the yard.

Feb 14, 2012

It's A Love Thing

Happy Valentine's Day

As a teacher I wasn't into Valentine's Day. So many cheap Valentine's that didn't really mean anything, handed out between little kids. Eh, whatever. This year, though, is different. There is so much love in my heart that I'm actually glad there's a day to relish in it. 

For the last couple months I've felt so happy and loved and content with life that I'm bursting at the seams with gooey love mush. I'm always on the verge of crying over the most tender moments, which of course my days are now filled with. Shoot, I'm even gushy towards the new post man who is so much nicer than the last one. 

Last week I had an off day, and even that wasn't so bad. That's right, cleaning baby poop (which was more like a man poop) off the floor wasn't exactly magical, but my head was in the right place to at least find it comical. I've also started writing down a tender moment from each day before I go to bed and I think that helps keep everything in perspective as well. It doesn't hurt that Luke surprised us today by coming home for lunch with flowers and sushi in hand. He's a good one! I know that there are cynics who hate this day, and I totally understand. I've got enough love for everyone these days and I'm happy to share. All my love to you readers on this glorious day!

I've been experimenting with my new camera, which has a pin hole setting. I went a little crazy on our walk the other day, but I was trying to capture the dramatic essence of the day. Needless to say, I was in love that day too.

My two valentines.

Feb 4, 2012

First Zoo Day

Thanks to friends and family, for Porter's birthday we were able to gather enough funds to get an annual family membership to Zoo Boise. Today we finally got the passes and took a tour of the zoo. It was a sunny day and since it's mid-winter there were only a few other families there. We had a good time and are excited to go back again and again.

Looking at the giraffes.
So this is what real giraffe animal print looks like.
Big one and little one.

This was his face when he first saw the lions.

Lioness. Just a big kitty, right?

Penguin Flyby

The saddest animals at the zoo, according to Luke.
He liked it!

 We've also been going for daily bike rides with the iBert bike seat. Porter loves it and loves getting to sit up front where all the action is and I find there's plenty of space to ride comfortably. It's also great having him on the front because it keeps the bike more steady than if he were on the back. He's also able to turn around and give me kisses, which is tender too. We are having so much fun these days. I love that he's getting older and we're able to be more active. Love my life!

Feb 3, 2012

2012 Challenges: February-Sleep More

The January challenge of buying less is finally over, phew! It was really, REALLY hard. Much harder than I thought. I did end up purchasing a couple of items: 2012 calendar, snow boots and beanie. I also spent more on groceries, but I attribute that to all the Sunset/Real Simple Magazine recipes that I tried out. In most cases, I was pretty successful considering my list of items I want and some of them I even need.

Much like a diet gone wrong, I've been on a bit of a shopping bender for the last 24 hours. Porter's made out pretty well, and so has my friend Suzy's unborn baby girl. I currently have a lot more gratitude for the ability to simply go out and get pretty much whatever we need and much of what we want. I never claimed to be perfect, but I will gladly call myself a work in progress.

Through the month I learned to really think before I purchase anything and I'm going to try to make a regular challenge through the year to not buy anything. There is also less of a burden, somehow, but I'm not sure in what way. Maybe it was the lack of Amazon boxes that needed breaking down and recycling, or the knowledge that we actually saved a boatload of money. Yeah, that's probably it. Here's to continuing to make conscious purchases from here on out. For those of you who are into blogs, I found solace through January by reading The Zero Waste Home blog. Check it out.

Now for February's challenge, sleep more. As you know I have a child who has dramatically altered my sleeping habits. As in, what's a weekend? Sleeping in? How does 6-7am sound, everyday? I've also blogged about my serious lack of sleep, and therefore sleep training, here. My goal then, is to get to bed by 11pm every single night of the month, weekends included. Luke and I are night owls, so 11pm seems like a decent hour for us. Porter is getting better at sleeping through the night, and if we get lights out by 11pm I have the potential of getting 8 hours of sleep. I know mommy friends, it's almost too good to believe.

In the last 3 days I've already met that goal with better organization and routines through our day. I'll let you know how it ends up in March. I'm also making a list of other 30 day challenges and am a few short to fill up the year, so if you have any good ideas leave them in the comments or drop me a line on Facebook.

I mentioned that I'm working towards getting a routine down during the week with Porter. He's currently transitioning from 2 naps a day to one nap a day, which frees up more time in the morning for fun. So far we've gotten into story time at the Boise Library! called Bloomin' Babies, we are going this weekend to pick up our zoo passes, afternoon bike rides with our awesome iBert bike seat (pictures to come) and, thanks to the local mall, Porter and I are now mall walkers. He pushes his stroller around and then we go play at the sweet indoor play area that has padded climbing toys and floors and doesn't allow shoes. I'm hoping all this fun stuff will make him nice and sleepy at night time so when 11pm rolls around I can get a full night sleep too.

He has mastered climbing up and down stairs, and figured out how to slide down the slide.

Who knew I'd be so thankful for a mall? 
Ironic since my last (and continuing) challenge was to buy less.