Monday, December 31, 2007

Baby steps.....

Just had to document it....I'm walking. It's been about 6 weeks since I broke my ankle. Just baby steps, but it's something! I tried for the 1st time two days ago (29th), after some encouraging words from a neighbor who is a massage therapist. She gave me some good advice, (after receiving not much from my doctor who pretty much just said "try to start walking" after my last visit). I was kind of fearful, because everytime I would put my weight on it I would feel this tingling, kind of like when your foot falls asleep, and I just was very unsure about putting my full weight on it. Well, I held on to hubby's hands and walked across the living room. Then, down the hall and back. Now, I'm up and gradually walking more and more. My ankle gets tired after a bit and still swells up after too long on it, but it's a start. Baby steps.....I'm really excited and motivated to keep going. You really take your health for granted when you have it. I will really appreciate walking so much more now.

Sharing with Wrapped Emotions, as it is indeed a gift to be able to walk again! The Theme this week is "Gift of every moment".

Wrapped Emotions button

BSM - Sweet Violet

This is my Best Shot Monday. I've recently discovered Picnik through Flickr, where you can do lots of editing on your photos, even selective color! Lots of fun & easy to use
For more BSMs go check out Tracey's blog Mother May I.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Flaunt it Friday-Best of 2007

For this week's Flaunt it Friday, we are looking back at 2007 and remembering what we wouldn't change for the world!!!

Spent our 10th anniversary in Cabo San Lucas and had an extremely wonderful time. I think we really needed this to reconnect, get romantic, and remember why we fell in love 11 years ago.

Came home to a safe, intact, home and to our 2 beautiful daughters, who seem to have grown a foot in a week's time! And thankful to my mom for evacuating them and our pets to safety and keeping a cool head, we can never thank her enough!!!

A new job for Dan, which enables me to continue to stay home with the girls and enjoy them eveyday as we live and learn and create.

Our first Unschooling Conference in Corvallis, OR in April, the Life is Good conference that Mary Gold at ZenMomma's Garden organized. A life changing experience that clarified and helped me to realize that unschooling was definately the path we wanted to commit to. We will definately be making the next one in May 2008.

Making new friends......we've made many new friends this year. And, some folks I feel that I've gotten closer to. I really miss my old friends from the Temecula Valley area, but it's also nice to become closer to those I have met in this area over the last two years that we've been here. It used to be so hard for me to make friends. I think that by blogging, it has actually made me friendlier and more open to new possibilities in the "real" world. I don't know if that makes sense to bloggers out there, let me know what you think about that....

Finding some really neat blogs that inspire, allowed me to meet new people, go to new places, see new things, hear different perspectives, make me laugh, make me cry, connecting with people, reconnecting with family.

Also, meeting and making friends through Flickr, and helping me to grow with my photography.

Looking through my posts from this year I just really got to reflect on all the fun things that we've done together. It makes me appreciate my health and anxious to get back on my feet again! I'm looking forward to 2008 and all that it brings and hope the best for my friends and family. Looking forward to the new babies on their way too!

Check out Flaunt it Fridays, and feel free to join in the fun!

btw, Violet had a Best of too, go here to see it, it was pretty exciting!!!!
Violet's Best of.

We had a Merry Little Christmas

Santa was pretty good to us all this year. The girls received what they wanted from Santa. Violet got a Cabbage Patch doll and Olivia got a puppy, albeit not a real one, but a "furreal" one. I think they were pretty happy with what mom & dad gave them. Violet was super excited to get a Wii, and Olivia got a chopper bike, webblaster and a Imaginext pirate ship. Both grandparents were here to visit and eat with us on Christmas day. We had a prime rib, potatoes, green bean casserole. Nana brought some really good ambrosia, and some desserts. We spent the evening playing Wii sports. It comes with games such as bowling, tennis, boxing, golf, & baseball. We were all a little sore in the arms the next day! We also got to spend some time with our neighbors and Dan's brother and his family over the holidays. That's what it's about, spending time with family& friends that you love. Hope yours was spent with loved ones and that you had a wonderful time!
Bowling Wii
Violet bowling on Wii
Bowling, wii style
Dad's turn
Opening the webblaster
Look at that excited face, when she opened the Webblaster
We were all pretty tired the next day......including Domino, who got a present too: a catnip filled teddy bear!

Many more photos in my Christmas 2007 Flickr set.

Monday, December 24, 2007

BSM Rudolph's friendly helper!

Here's my "real" BSM. I just had to get permission from her mom. But, I thought this was a really fun Christmassy photo that I wanted to share. (thank you to my friend for letting me share this!!!)

More Best Shot Mondays can now be found at Tracey's other photo blog, Mother May I

MotherMayI button

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

TT has a new home!


Theme Thursday (previously hosted by the lovely Tracey Clarke at Picture This) has moved to Stacey's The Land of K.A. Another talented photographer, Stacey has changed it up a little and is offering some fantastic photography tips and prompts that are sure to help many improve their skills! I'm looking forward to Tracey's move to Shutter Sisters as well as continuing to visit her Mother May I blog. There's sure to be many more exciting fun times after she makes this transition, and I for one, am planning on continuing my support and admiration for her!

So, for this week's Thursday Theme we are taking "window" shots, be it a shot of a window, a shot utilizing some lovely window light, or wherever else your creative juices take you. I had some fun taking some window light shots of my girls by my favorite spot in the front room. Be sure to check it out and join in the fun!

Havent' been in the mood......

I don't know why, but I just haven't been in the mood lately to blog. Maybe just burned out. I just posted an entry I had sitting in my drafts for Unschooling Voices. I had written it, and went in and edited it several times. I wasn't even sure I would post, and actually almost deleted it all together. Not sure why the hesitancy. But, I like participating and love reading the other entries. I learn so much from them. I hope our experiences help others and at least allow them to think about their own. I do like documenting the things that we do and things I notice my girls learning and just plain fun that we have, usually. I guess it's partly because of my ankle and being stuck at home mostly. It just kind of puts me in a bummer type of mood. I try not to let it.....but it does. Fortunately, I got a wheelchair delivered last Friday. It's really helped me get around the house easier, and I've actually been able to get out and about more now. We went to the town's Christmas tree lighting on Friday night, then out for some yummy Italian food at our local favorite restaurant. Sunday, we went to the movies and saw Alvin and the Chipmunks. I really didn't think I'd enjoy it as much as I did. So many funny references. I had to laugh when I heard one of the chipmunks do the "bow, chicka, bow, bow" at one point, when the man they lived with had a date and was trying to impress her. I think the first time I heard that reference was on Oh the Joys. Fun movie, I recommend it. Monday, one of the girl scout moms picked us up and we went with the troop to get some toys for Toys for Tots. We dropped off the toys at a local credit union then enjoyed a great lunch at Daphne's Greek Cafe. I enjoyed some hummus, pita bread and a nice salad. The girls both enjoyed their pita sandwiches.Then, we headed back to the Scout House and the girls made some graham cracker gingerbread houses and exchanged some homemade gifts with each other. Violet made a nice little Christmas diorama for one of the older girls. It had a Christmas tree and a kitten in it. She came up with the idea herself and made it on her own.

How can these cute gingerbread houses not put you in the mood? The girls are all so creative and it's fun to see them enjoying themselves.

I've done more in this last weekend than I've done in a month. It's been great for the girls too. I've made a few playdates for them here, and it's been so great to have friends over. Thanks to all those that have come and visited, we've really enjoyed having you here!!! Still not sure when I'll be driving so we'd love to have more......

Monday, December 10, 2007

Unschooling through the ages

Unschooling Voices, Issue #11 asks: How, if at all, does unschooling look different as your child ages and grows? Is it different now than it was a few years back? What role does age play in unschooling?

Even though Violet (now age 8) only went to "school", and that was as a homeschooler through a charter, for 1 1/2 years, I felt than it did affect her in several ways. For one, once we were "required" to provide documentation of math skills based on state mandated standards she started to feel stress and came to dislike "math" greatly. When she started to express that she "hated math" to me it became clear to me that the public school system way of learning was affecting her negatively in this area. Prior to enrolling in school she never hated learning anything. In fact, she had a love of learning that, looking back, I really honestly wish had never been tampered with.

It has taken about 2 years of deschooling math for her to even have an interest in anything resembling math. In fact, today I try to avoid using the word "math". I can now see math occurring almost daily in so many different ways. I have completely let it go, and am now pleased to see it happening very naturally and on a self-motivated, need to know basis. My mom, who has been a great supporter of our choice to unschool, recently picked up a little addition practice chart board. I initially thought that Violet would have no interest in it at all. But, she started going through it, and I think she surprised herself, and found that she already knew many of the answers by heart. I recently read this page on Sandra Dodd's list of "math" in real life. There is a great link called Math A Few Words About Unschooling Math that I found myself nodding my head as I read it. Math is so much a part of normal life that I'm really surprised to see how someone could not learn it naturally.

I'm glad to say that her love of learning in other areas were never affected. She still is an avid reader, and from that alone comes everything else. She enjoys watching on line videos and playing on line games, reading strategy guides, magazines, catalogs, collecting & trading Pokemon cards, watching W.I.T.C.H., Avatar, & Pokemon on TV. They both enjoy a science group that we go to. We started an American Girl club based on the American Girl book series (historical fiction). Going to 4H, where she helps out with craft group, scrapbooking, & photography. Girl Scouts. Several different park days, one being a wide mixture of homeschool types, and one an unschooling group.

Recently, we've been watching this program on TV called Kids Nation. Most of the kids showed a dislike of school, and when given the option of a video arcade or a library, preferred the video arcade. One little girl flat out said that she hated books, hated learning. We were really surprised and saddened to hear a child say that. One must wonder what made her dislike it so much. I thought it pretty ironic though, that the kids all seemed to be learning so much in an unschooly kind of way. It was funny too, that when they were initially given the video arcade many of them spent all of their time in there, disregarding their chores. I think that when a child is restricted from something, when given the opportunity they will do it all day. But as I have seen and other unschoolers can attest, eventually the attraction of it goes away, when they are not controlled from playing games and watching TV whenever they want. When Violet initially got her Nintendo she did play it all day, every day, for some time. Eventually, she got bored with it and wanted to do other things. She still plays with it on and off, sometimes several days go by without her playing it, other times she'll play with it for hours. But, I don't see it as negative thing. It's just one of her many interests. And she amazes me with the things she picks up from playing it, and the interests that it leads to. She also recently asked me to remove her TV from her room. She wanted her desk clear for her laptop and some other stuff.

Olivia (age 4) has never had any type of formal schooling. She lives life fully. Full of joy, full of interest and creativity. She's never been instructed to do something "this way" and therefore comes up with many beautiful, interesting creations. She is a highly motivated self learner. I constantly find her eager to learn. She likes to write letters, cut paper and create things from it, build things, loves to read stories with me, play games on the computer, sing, dance, play with friends. Where I see Violet hesitant sometimes, and often asking permission for something, Olivia just goes head first into things. She is sometimes fearless, but is learning about risks as we let her know what the consequence may be and assist her in making choices that are right for her. Violet was more controlled when she was younger so she usually asks first and is much more cautious. I now, often tell her that she does not have to ask (food, watch TV, etc) but she still does out of habit, I suppose.

I think that mostly unschooling looks different in our home now, because my outlook has changed. All of the things that I've read about unschooling have come true for us. There were many things that I was not sure could possibly be true, and yet when I trusted and allowed myself to be open to the ideas presented, did come true. My children (& I) are learning all the time. It doesn't resemble the learning that occurs in school, it doesn't occur during any specific hours, but I think it is learning that more closely resembles what living an authentic life looks like. Enjoying learning. Having fun. Making friends. Interacting with all types of people. Developing and pursuing new interests, letting them go. Having real life experiences. And so much more.....

For more takes on Unschooling through the ages go to Unschooling Voices. More articles to be linked on January 1st.

BSM-Eskimo kisses

Olivia wasn't so cooperative about Christmas photos this year but the outtakes were a lot of fun! Sometimes those are the best! I wanted her to wear a hat like Violet, but she didn't want to. So I ended up using one wear they are at least both looking forward. I thought this one was kind of cute, though. Go to
Picture This for more great Best Shot Mondays.

little bsm button

Sunday, December 09, 2007

And the winner is...........

Thank you everyone for commenting and entering the contest for the HP Camera Giveaway! I only wish I had a camera for everyone!!!! I picked a winner using the random sequencer at

Unfortunately, there's only one winner of the beautiful camera below, and it is the 10th commenter which is......(drumroll)

An HP Photosmart M547 Digital Camera!!!

Betty at WAYA!!!!!

Congratulations Betty!!!! You'll be receiving your camera directly from Hewlett Packard.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Contest for HP camera

Be sure to leave a comment on my Contest post to win an HP camera, here.

Monday, December 03, 2007

BSM Little bookworm

My Little thinker
The girls were playing around with some glasses I had laying around. Here's Livie looking rather pensive. I just pulled out East of Eden and started reading it again. It's been many years, but Steinbeck is one of my all time favorite authors and with me being laid up it's the perfect time to enjoy some of my old favorites!
Don't miss my HP Camera Giveaway. All you need to do is post a comment and I'll be having a drawing next Saturday.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Another HP giveaway!!!!! A Digital Camera!!!!

Announcing another great gift from HP to give to one of my readers!!!!

An HP Photosmart M547 Digital Camera!!!

It takes 6.2 megapixel photos, has a 3x zoom lens, red eye removal, 2.4 inch display and much more!!!!

It retails for $109.99! All you need to do is leave a comment and a random winner will be announced next Saturday, December 8th 8 pm pst!!! I will notify you by blog, or email. It is not necessary for you to have a blog, though!

I'm so excited to be giving this away, and wish each and every one of you the best of luck!
Happy Holidays to you and your families!


Oh by the way, I just found a website called via Melody's website Slurping Life (she's got some great contests giveaways going on too!) to make it nice a fair and random!!!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Picture This - Cozy

Violet and Domino getting "cozy". For more cozyness, go to Picture This Thursdays.

Winners of the HP books

Thank you for those that entered for the HP photobooks giveaway. Here's the winners:

Kirsten wins the 8 1/2 x 11 book
and Betty, Cynthia, and Dawn each get a 5 x 7 book! Yes, I actually have an extra 5 x 7 so nobody's a loser!!!!

Congratulations to you all! If you don't have my email, and I don't have yours, just shoot me a Flickrmail with your address by going here and I'll get it out to you!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Wordless Wednesday

Looking for crabs

Just some Thanksgiving photos.....

We had a fun, quiet time at my mom and dad's for Thanksgiving. Mom made these "Mayflower" ships for the girls out of yams, roasted marshmallows, cranberries, and some sails that she pulled off of the internet. Homeschooling nana they have! Olivia mostly ate the marshmallows of course, but the yams were very yummy as well. It was just my folks, my brother Martin, and us. Martin brought his dog, Lester, who is quiet excitable. He really enjoyed playing with the girls. He was a rescue dog from the Hurricane Katrina floodings. Martin was just supposed to be fostering him, but his home was not found, and Martin enjoyed him so much, that he ended up keeping him.

Bone and Lester
He brought him to our house one day, where he met our golden retriever Bone, and played with him in our back yard.
Lester playing tetherball
He also rather enjoyed playing tetherball. Which yes, he did eventually pop!
My pretty girls
The girls dressed up pretty for Nana's house for Thanksgiving.
Uncle Martin & Olivia
Olivia loved hugging and cuddling up with her Uncle Martin, while he read stories. Even though they don't see him often, they always start up where they left off when they see him. They both really enjoy his company.
Here's a photo of my roboleg!
Violet took this photo of my robo-leg this morning. I ended up getting about 10 stitches, a metal plate and about 7 screws in my ankle. The pain has finally subsided, but I'm not supposed to put weight on it yet, and have to go back in 4 weeks. This is a removable "boot" that goes over a sock on my leg to protect my ankle. Biggest bummer is not being able to drive. We're getting a little stir crazy here!!!

Friday, November 23, 2007

What was I thinking?

I posted a contest earlier this week to hopefully give away some HP Photobooks. Okay, maybe it was the heavy pain killers I was on, but who has time to look through my archives to look for some answers to some silly questions to win some books? I haven't even had time to look at my blog this week (or the energy). Especially it being Thanksgiving week and y'all probably being extemely busy with getting ready for Turkey Day, and probably some shopping afterwards. I've rethought and I really need to make it easier. I was just trying to have some fun (or what I thought would be fun, big wrong!) LOL


Anyway, if you happen upon my blog and would like to win an HP photobook (in prior entry), Please just post a short comment indicating that you've been here and I'll have a random drawing from the names and have 3 winners! Feel welcome to post here on this post or in the prior post and I'll pull a winner next Wednesday! That easy.

Hope your Turkey Day was great! We had a great one at my moms just us and my brother came down from Monterrey. The girls had a lot of fun playing with his dog Lester. Quite a bundle of energy, he is. Post photos soon!

Monday, November 19, 2007

10,000+ Let's celebrate!

***Contest edited***
Please just enter your name in the comments if you'd like to be entered to win an HP Photobook! Winners to be announced next Wednesday!

WooHoo, I reached 10,000 hits sometime today, so exciting to see. Interesting to see since I get about 5-15 comments on some of my entries, I would love to see who the rest of you are and read your blogs and find out more about you, don't be shy! I also have a very special incentive for you (see below)! Also, I really think that you would enjoy some of the fun challenges, and other fun stuff that goes on such a MamaSaysOm, Wrapped Emotions, PictureThis, Wordless Wednesdays & Flickr. Would especially like to get to know other unschoolers out there. There's some great Unshooling blog rings, check them out on my side link buttons. It is really a great way to make friends out there in the blogging world and you'll never know where it takes you...............(like here, or here, or here!) Also, through blogging, I was asked to participate in the HP Photograhics Memories Interviews with Mom Bloggers. I was interviewed by Susan Getgood at Snapshot Chronicles and received some HP Photobooks to give away!


So, in celebration, and to share the blogger love, I have a contest to announce:

Please leave a comment in the comments and I will put everyones names in a hat and pull 3 lucky winners. The 1st winner will recieve a 8.5"x11" book, and (2) 2nd places winners will each receive a 5"x7" book.

More details about the HP books:
Photo Books are a fun, easy way to create a customized, professional quality photo book at home with your inkjet printer. The innovative binding system – think of a big binder clip – lets you replace or rearrange pages and add mementos like ticket stubs or invitations. The included software has a variety of professionally designed layouts, or you can create your own with your favorite graphics package. Two sizes, 5x7 and 8.5x11, multiple colors.
An easy, fun way to create customized, professional quality photo books at home.
Professional looking two-toned linen photo book and software
Innovative binding system lets you replace or rearrange pages, add mementos
Photosmart Essential 2.5 software features a variety of professionally designed layouts
Two sizes. 5x7, $14.99 MSRP and 8.5x11, $24.99 MSRP

Available in the US at the HP Home and Home Office Store, Best Buy, QVC,, Staples, Office Depot and Circuit City (online only).

Through December 31, 2007, HP is offering a 20% discount on the purchase of the HP Photo Books.

If you don't win one here, there are other opportunities to win them, just check on Snapshot Chronicle's sidebar for other contests listed.

I've rethought the contest please feel free to join by just leaving a comment that you've been here and I'll consider you as entered in the contest, and I'll have a random drawing next Wednesday night!

BSM-Mr Krabs

Mr Krabs
I haven't really been able to take any shots this week, other than from where I'm sitting, so I pulled this one from last weekend when we went camping at Silverstrand State Beach.This one is of my friend's cute son closely inspecting a little crab that I found during low tide. I like how you can just see his eye poking in from the corner so I chose it for my BSM. Check out Picture This for more BSMs!

There is some more from our camping weekend in one of my flickr groups here, and a couple of sunset shots on my Mailboxes etc photo blog. Have a great week all!!!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Wrapped Emotions - Today I Love.....

This week's prompt at Wrapped Emotions starts with "What do you love today?"

Wrapped Emotions button

Here are the specifics:

For this week's prompt you will need to set aside a small block of uninterrupted time. *gasp* You can do it. You need to do it. Allow whatever amount of time you think it will take to complete the project. Get any art supplies ready ahead of time. Open your art journal to a clean page, date it and begin listing the things you love today...or whatever day you do the project.No typing on the computer and printing words. It should be done in your handwriting. Make it neat, make it sloppy, make it uniquely yours. Doodle the words, fine line print, bold line print, scribble. Write horizontally, diagonally, backwards, upside down. Give the page some color and pop...paint the page first...collage the page first...color the page with marker. Do not be limited by these suggestions. But WRITE the typing and printing. What is important is that you know what you love today.One more a creative way include a wrapper from one of the things you love today (or the day you do this). Remember, if a week's project is not completed on an actual journal page, take the time to lovingly place each one into your art journal.

Being that I'm not very mobile right now, I just decided to write it on some cardstock with some regular markers. I would have loved to paint and embellish and play with it some more, but most of my art supplies are out back in the barn, and I wasn't up to trekking out there on crutches! Anway, it was still fun, and was actually a really good thing that I was able to just sit and really stay in the moment and love and appreciate the things that were right there in front of me. My girls playing nicely together, a nice quiet view through the front window, relaxing in my favorite room of the house with some of my favorite things, with my leg propped up. So here it is. Violet also decided to participate, so I'll link hers here as well as on the Wrapped Emotions page.

***oops, I forgot to add my wrapper. But my favorite wrapper would have to be my Yardley's English Lavendar talc, but since it's on a tin, I couldn't put it on anyway.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Picture This: Giddy

Screaming for Hannah

There was definately much "GIDDY-ness" going on last Thursday night. We were so very, very lucky to be invited to go see the Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus Best of Both Worlds concert in San Diego. This was Violet's first time to a concert and what better concert than this. In addition, the Jonas Bros opened for her! We love to watch Hannah Montana's show on tv as a family, and love her music as well. She is as talented live as she is on the show. An excellent voice, and an excellent stage presence.

Violet & Emily

We were forunate to be guests of Hewlett Packard, who sponsored the concert, and were invited by Tracey Clarke over at Picture This. She was the official photographer for the HP guests and is promoting the My Concert memory books. I am so excited about them and can't wait to see how they turn out.

Hannah Montana


Jonas Brothers

Thank you so much Tracey, we had such a truly wonderful time!

For more "giddy" go to Picture This!

I'd love to share some of the HP love, so be on the lookout for an upcoming contest!

BTW, my surgery went well. Just call me the Bionic Woman. I now have metal in my ankle. Since I now have the plate, I was tempted to ask for microdermal studs......LOL just kidding! I have to go back in 14 days for another xray, to see whether I'll need a cast or just a boot. Boot would be better because, then I can take it off to take baths/showers.

Thanks for all the well wishes..........

Monday, November 12, 2007


I have so many cool things to blog about and was planning on sitting down and writing it all Sunday evening when we got back from camping, and well...........I just couldn't! Literally. We had a great Thursday evening, and yes, I promised to provide details, and will do so soon. We also had a wonderful weekend, camping at Silver Strand State Beach (also many great photos). Then, Sunday afternoon, shortly after coming home from camping, I was unpacking the trailer and well.....fell! I fell from the trailer steps, heard a loud "CRACK!" , landed on my side, in the field, next to our house! You got it, broke my ankle, and in two places! I've finally felt up to writing about it (after serious pain meds!!!!) Both the tibia and fibula are cracked, down at the ankle. I just have to say, it was the worst pain in my life, I kid you not. Dan was out back with the kids, who were on the trampoline and at the moment it happened were having a little spat, so they didn't hear me screaming out loud right away . I yelled for Dan for a few minutes and he finally heard me and came running. I couldn't move for the pain was so bad I felt like I was going to throw up. Anyway, he packed up me and the kids and I ended up in Urgent care. They took xrays and wrapped it in a splint. I was referred to an orthopedist today, and it turns out I will need surgery. It will require a metal plate inside my right ankle. So, I'll be out of commission for a few weeks. Won't be able to drive myself anywhere. And not supposed to put any pressure at all on it. I'll be getting the surgery on Wednesday, so please send some healing, well wishes my way....thanks :) The stitches should be removed after 12 days, then I'll know whether it will require a "boot" or a caste. UGGGGH!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Picture This - Memories

And the real Hannah Montana is......
Some HUGE memories will be made tonight, thanks to a very special person who I am so very thankful to for making my girl so very happy! Violet says a big "Thank You!" and we'll see you later!

Spidey Montana
Hey! It's Spidey Montana!

AND...............Dannah Montana!!!!

Dannah Montana

Gosh! I hope he doesn't kill me when he sees this!!!!LOL

Update after tonight, on another post!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Wrapped Emotions - Recreate your face

Wrapped Emotions prompt this week was to "recreate your face"

Below are the details:

We are going to get more comfortable with ourselves. We are going to get to know our own face, appreciate it, recognize it and love it. Whoa, get back here! Don't run away from this prompt screaming "Nooooo!!!" I'm in it with you and my face has seen better years.Hold your camera at arm's length and shoot a photo of your face. Oh hush up, yes, get that close. Don't expect it to look good, unless you're twenty years old it will probably look horrible. But we're all here together. Just face it, this is what everyone is looking at so breath deeply and take it.Upload the photo to your computer and with whatever photo editing software you are using de-saturate it, convert it to black and white. Lighten the image if necessary, make sure the image isn't too dark. Print a copy. Oh horrors! I know.Now take your pencil and trace over it...over and over and over. Every feature, every curve and line...trace over it. This is you.After working with your printed image, scan it into your computer and upload it into your Wrapped Emotions' post. Be sure to paste it into you art journal. Talk about the emotions experienced while doing this. Work at accepting and loving your face. Talk about the experience. Above all remember, if you cannot love yourself, how will others love you? How will you love others without self-love?

First of all, I had to take several photos to get one that felt right. Taken from too high up, my forehead looked huge, taken from too low, my chin looked fat. Already, you can see I'm highly critical of myself and not too happy with how I look. When I don't have to look at a picture of myself, I am okay with myself. When I look at a photo of myself, I am critical. Guess that's why you don't see too many self-portraits of me.....

However, looking at this photo of me, in black and white, I feel okay with myself. I think I look my age. When I look past the obvious things that I am critical with myself about (wide forehead, chubby chin, no cheekbones) I see the lines that define who I truly am.

One thing I notice is my smile lines on the side of my mouth, and at the sides of my eyes. People have always said that my girls always smile and always look happy. I see my girls reflections in my smiles. I think that by smiling often at your children, laughing often with them, having a positive disposition with them, showing them, telling them, that they are loved, creates happy, content children. Plus, they just make me smile by looking at them. They are such gifts. Kids need to see happy parents to feel secure and to be happy.

My eyes are happy. they are content with where they are now. They are a reflection of the beauty that I see in my world, through my family, and through nature's gifts. They are not windows to an old soul. They are of a new soul who had to experience and re-experience many things to finally get it right.

The lines created by hard times are seen on my forehead. Fortunately, they are few and small. I was once more serious, very unhappy, and thus frowned a lot. I hit some really hard lows and it took awhile to get through them. Fortunately, it was all pre-marriage, pre-children. I don't think I could have ever gotten to the place I am at, without having gone through it. And, it wasn't just unhappy teen years, it occurred throughout my 20s.

I am not a beautiful lady as lady's are defined in these times, but I believe I am close to being a beautiful person inside. At least, that's what I strive to be. I have my moments of ugly, and try to correct them and make them right. I have moments of hurt, when I allow others to make me feel bad about myself. I have moments of doubt, when I wonder if I'm still on the right path, or whether I have taken a wrong turn and need to go back and straighten it out.

Most importantly, I really need for my girls to see that I am happy with myself and that we are all beautiful people and not to compare ourselves to what others percieved beauty may be.

As far as loving oneself, I don't always love the person that I am, but I can't expect to be perfect, and I have to try to love the imperfect person that I am. It's a work in progress.....and thus the point of participating in Wrapped Emotions.

What do you see?

Wrapped Emotions button

Monday, November 05, 2007

Enjoy your family - WE

(Olivia took this photo of Violet & I)

Wrapped Emotions prompt this last week, was Enjoy your family. Being that we are unschoolers and I am with my girls pretty much all the time, I am very fortunate that I get to enjoy my family quite often! But, even more so when Dan is home too. He started a new job 2 months ago and is working longer hours. It's a real bummer and the kids miss him being at home at 430 in the afternoons. Recently, Olivia wanted to know the days of the week, in order. She'll say some of the days and try to put them in order out loud, so I've been helping her try to memorize them, because that's what she wants (natural learning occurring!). I wasn't sure about her motive for learning it, or whether there even was one, until she asked "what day is daddy home?" Aha, she wants to know so that she can know what days she can expect daddy to be home. Cool. So, with daddy home this weekend, she, they both, got to spend lots of time with both of us and I got to enjoy my family, that much more! We had been spending more time in doors, due to the air quality from the fires, and this weekend it was finally very clear and beautiful outside. So they got to spend some time on the trampoline, riding trikes and bikes, and playing "Tarzan & Jane" (Olivia's favorite pretend game-you guessed it, she's Tarzan, I'm Jane!)

Dog Pile on the trampoline with dad

We even had family time with the cats. We had fun watching them wrestle around!

(Photo courtesy of Olivia)

For more entries, go to Wrapped emotions or go to the link below

Wrapped Emotions button