Ruby is six!

I can hardly believe that I have been Mama for six years. I am insanely proud of this girl.

IMG_3012Ruby’s birthday fell on a school day, but John took the afternoon off to help us celebrate after she got home. We baked cupcakes and opened gifts – including the card that Gigi wrote by herself and the gift she gave Ruby – noodles. “Because I know that Ruby really loves noodles.” Ruby was gracious as she opened each gift, oohing and aahing over everything; appreciating the thought, time, and effort that went into choosing and making each special present for her.

IMG_3017The next day, we hosted a small birthday party for her – a pink and purple ice cream cone party at her request.

IMG_2703She painted ice cream cones for the invitations.

IMG_2812We hung giant ice cream cones on our front porch to greet Ruby’s friends.

IMG_2801The kids dressed up their ice cream cones with seriously delicious toppings that Ruby picked out at Trader Joe’s (easiest party idea ever).

IMG_3030Then outside to burn off some sugar and enjoy the perfect weather! The girls took turns racing each other with “waffle balls” balanced on top of ice cream cones. Ruby is concentrating very hard.

This kid is growing up way too fast for me. Ruby still loves to snuggle up and read with me, but she is somehow old enough to have two wiggly teeth too. She has taught me so much, these past six years. I’ve learned more about love and letting go than I imagined possible. She has always had a fiercely independent spirit and challenged me to honor that. Ruby observes and memorizes details, loves to play with Ginger, and speed read her chapter books. She is thoughtful and wise and my hope is that she holds on to her strong sense of self while remaining compassionate towards others.

This is one special six-year-old.



sick, sick, sick

Poor little Ruby has pneumonia. Again. It’s the 3rd time and she’s not even five yet. She caught a virus last week that settled into her lungs. Friday afternoon, we decided we didn’t like the sound of her cough and I took her to urgent care on Saturday. We had to wait 2 hours to get a room and were there over another hour after that.


She is so patient and was feeling well that morning, so we played go fish and she drew and watched tv. The doctor found an ear infection too, Ruby’s first! She hadn’t even complained of an earache, so it must be pretty mild. Then she had to have a couple x-rays. That seemed to make her pretty nervous, but she held it together.

The doctor wanted to see if her lungs sounded better after a breathing treatment, so they hooked her up to a noisy machine and this mask for about 10 minutes.


She really didn’t like this at all. She kept asking me if it was done and the straps bothered her ears, so I was holding them off her head the whole time. I felt so bad for her. Those big eyes were so pathetic staring at me.

She charmed all the staff there with her patience and fairy wings. I kept hearing people in the hall talking about “little Ruby”. We finally left and got a pile of stuff from the pharmacy to ward off the evil spirits.

She’s feeling much better today, especially after her best friend dropped off a get well gift on her way to preschool.


Ginger and I are sick today. Gigi has a cough, which I’m really hoping will just stay a cold. To say I’m ready for cold/flu/sick season to be over would be an understatement. It’s been rough so far this fall and winter. 

All photos taken with Instagram

smock and books



I made this little smock for Ruby’s birthday.  I used a pattern from Amy Karol‘s Bend the Rules book and it was great!  It was the first time I sewed on a curve and used bias tape and both went pretty well, for the most part.  I used some leftover fabric from a project my mom made for Ruby when she was born.


Unrelated, I read two books recently that I really enjoyed.  I’ve been reading a lot of Mary Oliver‘s work lately and picked Our World at the library which is written by her but is full of photographs by Molly Malone Cook.  It’s beautiful – the photos, the poetry, and the touching love that was evident throughout the book.


I love, love, love Maira Kalman‘s books.  I have several of her children’s books that I adore.  I read Principles of Uncertainty in an afternoon and really enjoyed the artwork and little stories she shared throughout the book.

Have any of you read these books?

More Florida Highlights and Handmade

I never know if I should post pictures of people other than our little family on the blog.  We spent most of our trip visiting family and some friends.  It was wonderful to spend time with so many people.  We really appreciate all the schedules that were re-arranged for it to be possible.  John blogged about it here.

We celebrated our niece’s 4th birthday, which was so fun!  Ruby loved that the little dogs wanted to eat her cracker and she had to tell them no.  She retold that story soooooooo many times.  “Ella, cracker, no!, Ruru’s”  She also loved her first taste of chocolate cake.


We gave my niece a repetitive book (some of the words repeat so its easy to remember and “read”) for the budding reader and a bag full of goodies.  I made the two drawstring bags (edited to add: from a pattern in this issue of Living Crafts) and we collected notebooks, sticky notes, stickers, colored pencils, some clay and a copy of The Great Chicken Escape by Nikki McClure.  I hope she liked it!  I’m just glad I was able to finish it in time.


…especially since I was busy completing this wholesale order.




Meet Your Maker is getting ready for our new craft show season and we’re holding a contest to design a new logo for our posters.  You can check out details on our site if you’re interested and check back to see the new design.


John has uploaded some new videos of Ruby here (it’s a different link to videos of her than the one on the right).


We had the yummiest hot chocolate of my life a few nights ago.  We used the recipe from Apples from Jam, a book I love.

And my stomach is growling waiting for John’s bagels to be ready to eat!

portland weekend

John’s birthday was Sunday and we got to spend most of the weekend in Portland.  He had a conference for work there and Ruby and I went up with him and spent the night.  It was perfect timing.  We got to go out to eat at great restaurants on his birthday – quite a treat when we live in a small town!

When John was working, Ruby and I spent most of our time at coffee shops and Powell’s.  I planned on taking her to OMSI, but she took her time snacking and napping and we couldn’t quite time it right.  Fine by me.  I enjoyed sitting around in coffee shops with her and Coco (her bunny).