Steamroller

The new steamroller is here for all your road building projects!

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 It will smooth your new roads out beautifully with two poplar rollers. The base is made from pine and the accents are cherry. The steamroller is 4 inches long and about 2 inches high. It comes with a workman figure that is 3/4 inches in diameter.

We’re working on preparations for our Christmas in July party tonight, and tonight is also the last chance for you to take advantage of my Christmas in July sale and use the coupon code JULYXMAS14. 

 

 

 

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Baby Spoons

Yesterday was a crazy day of errands intermingled with fun. First thing in the morning, I had to take care of an expired registration ticket. There wasn’t much fun there. Then Caleb helped me replace the loose step going up to our porch. The fun there was the old do-it-yourself glow of satisfaction.

Later in the morning, we drove over to Pennsylvania to pick up cream and milk to make ice cream for our Christmas in July party of Friday. On the way home, we stopped at the park and played until the pool opened and then swam for an hour or so.

After going home to work some and package up some toys, we headed out again to the Farmer’s Market and the hardware store and the local general store (aka Walmart). On the way home, we stopped at the park for a run (me) and some baseball (Caleb).

When we finally arrived home to stay, it was after 8pm, and I was checked out for the night. My son is at the point where errands bore him to tears. He hates going with me, but today, despite all we had to do, went quite smoothly. I got my stuff done, and he got to have fun. Win-win.

I didn’t however remember to share a new toy with you, however, so I’ll be posting twice today.

I made these darling little baby spoons a couple of weeks ago, and now they are available for you on etsy!

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You can also have them personalized.

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They are finished with organic jojoba oil and local beeswax. You have the option of leaving the spoon plain or having your child’s name burned into the handle. They are the perfect size for little baby hands, and would make a darling addition to a baby shower gift.

It would also make a nice gift for an older child to use for feeding their dolls or using with your play kitchen.

This evening I hope to post a steamroller, if I can get the kinks worked out by then. So stay tuned! And don’t forget your coupon code JULYXMAS14. There is only one more day left.

 

Lacing Toys

Since I missed yesterday, today I’ll be posting not just one new toy, but three. I have three different lacing toys for sale. Clicking on the picture will take you to the purchase page on etsy.

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Butterfly

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Apple

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Whale

 

These toys are great for practicing the sewing motion. They are made of solid maple or cherry wood, and finished with my homemade beeswax polish. The “needle” is attached to the natural cotton “thread” to make it easy to poke through the holes. 

As soon as I explained to my son what they were for, he got right down to sewing, and he’s not really a sewing sort of kid (more of a “let’s play TAG!” sort of kid). Lacing them up myself, I found it to be rather relaxing. I think a little girl would get quite a kick out of these. 

I’ll be back tomorrow with more new toys, and don’t forget to use the coupon code for my Christmas in July sale before it expires Friday night. JULYXMAS14

Christmas in July Sale plus New Toys!

This year for my Christmas in July sale, I’m offering 25% off everything in the shop, but you’ll have to hurry, because the sale ends July 25th. The coupon code is JULYXMAS14.

And since it’s half-Christmas, I have some new toys for you too. Every day this week I’ll be posting a new toy. I’ve been busy the last month prepping for craft shows, and the pressure really fuels my creativity.

First up (and the one I am most proud of) is the bucket truck.

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These were a HUGE hit at my last craft show. People (even people without any kids) couldn’t help playing with them as they walked by. It is flexible at all three joints, and the whole bucket assembly swivels. It has places for a driver and another man in the bucket.

It comes with two handpainted men 3/4″ in diameter at their base. You can request firemen (as pictured) or workmen (orange clothes and yellow “hardhat” seen in the digger listing), depending on whether you want it for a fire truck or perhaps an electrical truck.

The truck is 8.5″ long including the bucket, and 3 inches high all folded up, and extends to 14 inches high fully extended. It’s made from cherry, oak, and walnut woods, with birch wheels and axels.

 

 

Roasted Green Beans

I have been inundated with green beans. I have beans in my garden. Friends have beans in their gardens. There are beans in the community garden, which I HAD to pick, because you have to keep beans picked, otherwise they’ll quit producing.

The problem is, I’m not that crazy about green beans. I prefer my beans all grown up and mature. They’re okay, but on the whole I prefer broccoli, collards greens, and kale for my green veggies. That is, I did, before I learned about roasting green beans.

Snap the stems off your beans, put them in a bowl, drizzle a little olive oil on them, sprinkle them with garlic salt, and spread them out on a baking sheet. Bake them until they are as tender as you want them. Baking times will vary based on the thickness of your beans, but generally about 15-20 minutes at 350 should do it.

They aren’t exactly like french fries, but they definitely aren’t like your garden variety steamed or boiled beans either. The flavor deepens and sweetens until you just can’t get enough of them.

I’ve been eating them every other day for the past week. And they are so Easy. I tend to eat them with my fingers, so I don’t even bother to chop them into bite size pieces. They make a great snack.

I haven’t been able to convince my son that they are good, though he did eat them when I served them for dinner the other night, but if your kids aren’t already prejudiced against green beans, I bet they would love them like this.

Getting Back to My Roots

Lately, I’ve been feeling very disconnected as a parent. Maybe it was due to the 2 craft shows that I just did and the lead up of extra work. Maybe it was due to the lice we picked up from some neighborhood children that disrupted our bedtime routines. Or maybe it was before that even. Maybe at some point in the past year or two or three, I lost my way as a parent.

Attachment parenting, the parenting style that I found myself practicing before I even discovered that it was a “thing”, focuses great attention on the early years. If you read Mothering magazine back when it was still published or read the Natural Parenting Project website articles today, the vast majority focus on the baby and toddler years.

Breastfeeding, babywearing, co-sleeping, etc. are the mainstays of the movement, but what about after that? How do we maintain that connection we had when our kids were babies/toddlers while still giving them room to grow and explore?

The fact is, in the thick of daily life, we can forget our lofty intentions, and start acting on autopilot, Knee-jerk parenting, you might call it. These small people living with us can be messy and annoying, and we just react, rather than acting intentionally out of kindness and purpose.

Go back to those articles you read when your kid(s) was small. Do you still think what they suggested is a good idea? Do you believe it in theory? How can you get back those ideas?

Think about the areas of conflict in your day. How can you handle them in accordance with your beliefs? Read articles, blog posts, etc, about how other people handle those areas, and see what resonates with you.

Don’t abandon your ideals because you are just too busy to think about them anymore. Connection with your kids is worth taking the time for. It’s worth examining your prejudices for. It’s worth changing your attitude for.