This morning after taking E to the bus with me, AB thought she’d visit our neighbour’s driveway. She even ventured all the way to his front steps. I asked if she was going to come inside with me or go live with Steve.
She said nonchalantly, “Yep. I’m gonna go live with Steve.”
After a few minutes, she changed her mind, claiming “Steve is a monster.” (Monsters are on her mind a lot right now, though seemingly not in a very scary way.) I assured her that Steve is actually a nice guy, but she opted to have breakfast with me anyway.
I love her in this poofy powder-pink snowsuit. She also has a brown coat with leopard-spotted lining, which I have to admit is edgier… but gosh. I like the pink in spite of myself.
Hoping my technical difficulties might take a coffee break, I’m attempting to backpublish a post from… several days ago. (I wouldn’t want you to think that Jian Ghomeshi had completely quashed the possibility of happy days.)
Here’s some happy from Day 3, even though they’re pics from October 31st. Because they can make me smile any day of the year. (Even though excited kids standing still enough for a clear photo on Halloween simply did not occur.) Plus, costumes are fun EVERY DAY.
And if you think that wee giraffe looks just like another wee giraffe you might have seen a few years ago… you’re right.
So. Biggest hiatus ever in the history of this blog. Jeepers.
Suffice it to say I’ve been itching to write – oh, so many posts in my head – but was away for a whole week at leadership camp (MOTL) and returned home just in time for my firstborn’s fifth birthday (as yet herein uncommemorated! What?? MOTL) to throw myself into the maelstrom of yearbook and report cards.
So yeah. I’m breaking the silence with a frouffy post about my daughter in tennis dresses.
(It’s also slightly possible that I’m procrastinating because my reports aren’t done but my brain is friday-fried. Perhaps.)
Best part: it’s Then and Now.
First, classic tennis whites for a child too small to walk, cute pastel stripes because who doesn’t love stripes?
OMG she was so little and fuzzy-headed.
Then we have the outfit she wore on her big brother’s birthday, approximately a year later, in honour of his love for Angry Birds. This little number was handed down to us by a thoughtful friend who knew about AB’s nickname and knew she must have this.
Still kinda fuzzy-headed. 🙂
I imagine you don’t see a lot of pink-with-sparkly-buttons-and-plaid-trim on the courts, but I’m sure my kid could pull it off. She may be even be a fashion leviathan someday.
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve been attracted to things that are tie-dyed. I love the fluid shapes and patterns and the vibrant colours. Fortunately for me, tie-dyed clothing is one of the 80s trends I like that came back! (Along with some that make me wince a little, such as crimped hair.)
I have also always wanted a pair of Converse high-tops, ever since Grade 9 when I spent many hours drawing a beat-up black Chuck featured in my culminating still-life in art class. (We got our still-life materials from a closet in the art room that was full of interesting crap.) At age 14, I did not feel I could pull off the necessary coolness/attitude for high-tops. Now that I’m an adult, I know what’s important, which is: I don’t care if I pull them off.
I ended up putting those two ideas together after getting all excited about design-your-own shoes on the Converse website and then having my dreams crushed because Converse.com DOES NOT SHIP TO CANADA and furthermore DOES NOT ACCEPT PAYMENT FROM ANY CANADIAN INSTITUTION INCLUDING PAYPAL ACCOUNTS FROM CANADA. (Not that I’m bitter.)
The solution? Dye my own. (IN YO FACE, Converse.com!)
I went out and procured two “One-Step Tie-Dye” kits by Tulip. I had to get two, because I wanted all the pretty colours, please.
If you’ll notice, one kit says it will dye up to 20 projects, and the other up to 30 projects… and the dye apparently starts to lose potency after 45 minutes. Ergo, by my calculations, that meant: dye a whole truckload of stuff!! Or as much stuff as I could reasonably afford.
Here are a few things I learned from the DIY Tie-Dye Extravaganza chez Dilovely:
Paper towels: YES.
Plasticized tablecloth: YES YES YES. (Dye washes right off with water.)
Plastic gloves from the kit: nice idea but they SUCK. Rip at the slightest provocation.
Reading the whole instruction booklet first: a good idea. It’s full of solid advice.
I would add to the advice: if you don’t want to have droplets of the wrong colour in random places, put your fingertip over the tip of the bottle when positioning it.
Also, if you want lots of control over what the dye does, use a sponge to apply dye instead of tipping it straight from the bottle.
We tried three of the different techniques for shirts described in the instructions: bullseye, spiral, and “scrunching”.
They all work! Make sure you use lots of dye to penetrate the folds.
If your helper is a small child, make sure he has had a full snack before you start.
If your small-child helper is a mini-perfectionist, working with liquid dye might produce tears and/or screaming.
If the end result is cool enough, your small-child helper will forget all about the tragic parts of the adventure.
The rinsing part takes forever – but you can make it more efficient by squeezing in a top-down direction.
As to the staining of rubber soles: tiny spots that got in around the tape washed right off the Converse and the adult shoes, so my precautions were probably unnecessary. The only soles that seemed to stain were the kid shoes. I’m hoping it’ll come off with baking soda and a toothbrush.
We kept the bottles, and there’s a refill dye packet for every colour… so I may be ready to try this again in a year or so.
Don’t you want to go try it yourself? 🙂
P.S.: If you’re a shoe-lover and a Canuck, I can recommend ShoeMe.ca. My Converse came from there, hassle-free, free shipping and returns on everything – but they ONLY SHIP WITHIN CANADA. Just so you know. The company tells me you can get $50 off $100 with your first order – just for being MY friend!! – by using this link. http://shoemeca.refr.cc/4822RKB
It’s been a memorable holiday season. Christmas that was both black(out) and crazily white… So much awesome family… Yummy food and festive music… Gratuitous cuteness….
Now here we are. Gearing up to go back to school and normal life tomorrow, while also battening down for another storm. Bracing for back-to-school germs, now that both kids are finally almost done coughing and E is getting over his second bilateral ear infection since JK started. Feeling a bit of the blues, but also glad to be getting back to a routine.
And today, my Hubbibi spent the day cleaning house (while I got the kids out of there) so we could all feel fresh and ready for NEW YEARNESS. (Thanks, honey. What a difference.)
We’ve had some festive times lately, and I do tend to milk those, fashion-wise, when it comes to Baby AB.
The wedding in Cape Cod was obviously an important opportunity to wear this pink gingham with satin roses. The dress being sleeveless – and Cape Cod being quite windy – we added the sweater (beautifully hand-knitted, but it’s a hand-me-down so I have no idea who made it), and the striped BabyLegs. And the sandals fit better than the first time they were featured. I think she pulls it off.
Then there was the first birthday! Which of course was celebrated multiple times. This navy sailor dress was for the combination birthday-Auntie-Em’s-housewarming.
Then, of course, there was Thanksgiving! Little schoolgirl dress (the pleats at the back are adorable but the photo doesn’t do them justice), more BabyLegs, and that cutie hat with crocheted flower. (Also a hand-me-down.)
E was also quite stylin’ that day. Can’t get enough of sweater vests on boys.
Last week, the weather showed us how flexible it can be in September. On Tuesday it was 34C (93F), feeling like 42C (108F) with the humidity. (Inside my school, ’twas even hotter.) So although school has started, we were reminded that IT IS STILL SUMMER, Y’ALL.
Then a few days later, it got down to almost freezing at night. What the what?
Let’s look at some differing ensembles worn by Baby AB this past spring and summer, in honour of the dazzling temperature acrobatics.
Here’s a skimpyish one, from May. I call it “Butter Me Up.”
And ZING, here’s a cozy one. I call it, “Hug This Bear.”
Back to skimpy! “Sweet Pea”, because obviously.
And toasty again! I call this one “Cordurosy”, because the jacket is fine-wale corduroy and so is the trim on the jeans.
And finally, here’s a hybrid. Let’s call it “Too Cute To Be Named.”
When we were kids, we had one jillion pencil crayons, courtesy of my dad. Mostly Laurentians and Prismacolors. They were kept in three old sorbet containers, one for warm colours, one for cool colours, and one for neutrals. We spent a lot of time colouring, and knew well the nuances of Deep Yellow versus Lemon Yellow, Dark Brown versus Photo Brown, etc.
One of my favourite colours was Carmine Red. The pencil itself had a rich, waxy consistency on the paper, and was a stunner when you used it wisely.
The pants and trim of this lovely set, which I call “Paislicious”, are Carmine Red. It’s a nice change from straight-up pink. Super-sassy gift from a family friend. (I’ve also always had a soft spot for paisleys. The majority of my dad’s neckties are paisley – though not carmine – and he used to go to work in them looking very elegant indeed.)
The softer sister of Carmine is Salmon. I don’t recall a coloured pencil named Salmon, but I’m sure I would have overused it if we’d had one. And the delicate details of this knit one-piece are so gorgeous I almost can’t stand it. (See it paired with long sleeves here.)
And the shoes, the shoes. (Hand-me-downs, in perfect condition). Ach. SO GREAT.