Sunday, December 14, 2008

Allie Speaks

Allie speaks - "Mom, you smell like a banana split!"

(this is after I ate a banana and drank some peach detox tea)

I guess it's better to smell sweet than sour!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Texas Riviera

Blogging took a back seat last month as we tackled much school work and geared up for the Holidays and a special little one's second birthday. So this weekend we took a much needed rest at the Gulf Coast. The camper's inaugural outing went perfect! As tent campers up until now, I have to say that my back much prefers the camper's bed.  The quaint quarters made for a big slumber party. The outdoor cooking, marshmallows, chocolate bars, graham crackers made for - m'mm good smores.  We ended each fun filled day staring into the campfire as the girls entertained us with stories in the round - mostly about a princess and a mighty evil dragon turned good - very funny stuff with giggling girls all around.

One of the things I love most about camping is the chance to get out in nature. The girls get dirt in their finger nails, find joy in picking up oyster shells on a hiking trail and build sand castles at the beach.  If you were looking for them, chances are they were up in a tree.  Following a trail
and not knowing where it might end or go  - that same adventurous spirit that propelled families westward so many, many years ago. 

The live oak trees here in Texas have a beauty all their own.  Each one is different, twisting this way or that. Evergreens very unlike the piney trees I grew up with in the East. Our campsite had a perfect live oak tree for the girls to climb.  I couldn't help but capture a few more on our hike. The spanish moss from the limbs and the vines that are usually full of greenery are now almost bare.

It wouldn't be a vacation without some car knitting now would it?! Travel to and from our Texas Riviera vacation filled my hands with a little of this and that.

I have some finished projects to share soon - like the birthday girl's new dress. Hope your weekend was relaxing as well!



Friday, November 7, 2008

Salute to the Sausage

Is that the most ridiculous title or what?! In fact, it is happening here right this very minute and continues year, after year in our hometown. The annual Wurstfest is upon us - one bite of sausage after another. We ventured out to Wurstfest the first year we moved here to see what all the fuss was about and we haven't been back - I think we all had culture shock! This is how you would sum up the event in very few words; Germans, sausage, and beer. Oh, maybe I should include polka music too! Have you ever done the "chicken dance"? Well then you have not experienced Wurstfest!

Have a great weekend! Na na na na na na na - clap clap clap clap!


Monday, November 3, 2008

You are my November

As I look around to see the leaves finally changing colors here in South Texas, I wake up to chilly mornings where I'm on the edge of turning on the heat, but not quite ready. I wonder where another year has gone - it's November. This month is always nostalgic for me as I look back at the years. It's a celebration of the month we officially moved into our new home here in Texas, it's a celebration of life as we get ready for a birthday and it's the start of the best season ever.

The girls finished up October with trick-or-treats Halloween night. 
Miss Abbey kept me company handing out goodies to the neighborhood children
and was also my partner in crime as we munch our fair share of candy straight out of the hand out basket. Honestly, how do you tell an almost two year old she can't have any more candy without the creation of magnificent tears? Pumpkin carving was loads of fun, but Abbey decided that pumkin guts were "ewe-ewe-ewe". She stood on the front porch the whole time trying to steer clear of any flying pumpkin parts.

I finished up my Fall "Mama Bag" as I call it. Nothing is allowed to enter into it you see, unless it belongs to me and only me. No diapers, no dolls, no sippy cups, no snacks (unless they are mine), no "Mom will you hold on to this for me?" items..nada. I used Portabello Pixie's new Market Bag pattern and yes, I'm totally uncreative in picking out my fabrics for this bag. I loved the ones she used so much that I just went straight to those and I'm so happy with it. The ol' sewing machine didn't quite like sewing through five layers of fabric, but I'm pleased with how it turned out. If I win this, then the ol'sewing machine won't be hollering at me any more.

The next sewing project was going to be Miss Abbey's birthday dress, but I think we'll make a few baby hats first. Check over on Mama to Mama (Soule Mamas new website) for details of this very worthwhile project. Tis the season to give back and who could be more deserving than another mother. We're all connected by this wonder called motherhood. Living here, where we are planted, it sometimes seems surreal that somewhere else there is great pain, heartache and even violence towards mothers. As part of our living mindfully of others, I hope that my girls will help me with this project and maybe we'll even try another one in the process.

Oh - if you haven't already voted, then GO VOTE! 


Friday, October 24, 2008

Marie-Therese Gown GIVEAWAY !!!!!!!

Marie-Therese Gown GIVEAWAY !!!!!!!

Wow - that's about all there is to say. Such a talented lady and generous offer. My girls would swoon over such a dress if it were to arrive at our house. Can't you just hear the little "oohing" and "aahhing" - don't forget the little screams of delight too!

Speaking of Halloween costumes, I'm about to sew up a cheerleader outfit for my little Allie (4). She'll look very sweet in piggie tails and pom poms. That's of course unless we win the Marie-Therese gown! :)


Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Wind

A cold front blew through this week bringing lovely weather, perfect park days and cool nights. This is the conversation I had with my sweet 4 yr old daughter:

Little A: Mom, is God the wind?

Me: Well, God makes and brings us the wind.

Little A: God IS the wind!

Me: You are right, God is the wind.

Have a wonderful weekend!


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

12 weeks to Christmas?!

So I've been informed that there are now 12 weeks until Christmas. It's probably less than that already. Time to start those lists! What are you giving this holiday season? I know, I know - it seems way to early to start thinking about it. Starting early saves a ton of money and planning later on though. I tend to be a type A personality but I try so hard to use my left brain! I'm a left brain wannabe.

October is the month to find great deals. I often check the clearance section at the end of the aisles in Target. As they put out their "Christmas" toys, many others are marked down. In an effort to give more handmade items this year, we'll be visiting the fabric store often. My oldest daughter said they have 12 fat quarters for $10. - she's making skirts for American Girl dolls to give as gifts. We adapted the quick skirt pattern to fit dolls and it looks very cute! The crafting/sewing table we refinished (found it for gratis!) is certainly to be a focal point of our holiday gift making.

Wellness baskets are on my list to make - I wonder who the lucky receiver might be? Filled with "take care of YOU" items like a rice heat therapy bag, boo-boo bag, eye pack for headaches, and some yummy herbal items like Kerry's Herbal Miracle Salve (this stuff rocks!). Maybe I'll throw in some Baby's Bottom Butter too - we had a craze this Spring/Summer when news hit the US that this cream was used as a woman's facial cream. I couldn't keep the Moondance Soaps version of the cream on our shelves. It was pretty funny watching how much people were buying actually - not in a ha-ha sort of way, but a good way!

So what are you making as gifts? I need ideas!

Off to a La Leche League meeting this morning. I've been a LLL Leader for many years now and it is still something I enjoy. Seeing all the mamas and new babies, answering their questions, and watching the mother-to-mother support is something I never get tired of. The hard part is getting everyone out the door, school work packed up for the older girls to school on the go and keeping the "mama I'm hungry" at bay during the meeting - that means snacks!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Goodbye - Hello!

You can find me over on my new blog - The Full Circle Mother.

Why the new blog? I wanted something personal to record the happenings of our family, but I still wanted to keep the blog for my business as well. So I created The Cloth Diaper Blog and The Baby Wearing Blog to help educate and inform on those topics. Links to both are over on the Full Circle Mother now. See you there!


aka - the Full Circle Mother

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Shack

Finished reading "The Shack" this week and wow - what a powerful book. I highly recommend it, especially for anyone struggling with fear or sadness in their life. While I didn't feel that way going into the book, it surely made me realize many things even though the book itself is fiction. Plus, don't we all know someone who is struggling with sadness in some form or another. The great part about this book, is that you can turn the sad situation in the book into anything else - like a cancer diagnosis, loss of a job, fear of dying even.

One thing I am taking away from the book is "love" - or more like "loving". I want to put verbs into my living (see how I made that a verb instead of the noun "life") and by pouring more love into everything I do I will see it in others lives, especially my children. Most mothers probably wonder how they could ever love their children more than they do at this very moment. I feel the exact same way. I love them unconditionally, with all my heart. By changing love from a noun to a verb, we will be loving them in ways we haven't before. By doing, instead of having, we will reap the rewards of wonderful children and our lives will always be blessed by them.


Monday, October 6, 2008

Weekend Sewing

My favorite season is finally arriving here (although slowly) in South Texas. While we have to endure some really hot days in the summer, it all comes full circle in the Fall and Winter when we have the most wonderful weather. I just love the cool mornings and beautiful days! I used to bundle my girls up in jackets, turtle necks and warm pants when we lived in Virginia, but here they can just go out in almost the same clothes year long. Our one week of winter doesn't last long enough here.

This weekend the girls and I hit the outlets to get a few pieces of Fall clothes for them. I made a pledge to not buy any "new" clothes for the two little ones (4yrs and 22months) this Fall season so the only new outfits they will have will come from being hand-made. The two little ones have bins full of hand-me-downs from sisters and cousins. The only thing that I will need to buy is some shoes probably.

I sewed Baby A her first new handmade set this weekend using the Oliver + S free skirt pattern for the skirt and hand appliqued the t-shirt (from Old Navy). If the day is colder, this set has a matching long sleeve shirt with fabric covered buttons and a cute set of baby legs! Baby Legs are great for our weather. The Fall/Winter days always start out chilly, so Baby A can wear her baby legs to keep her legs warm and as the day grows warmer, we can just pull them off.
I hit the jackpot at the local fabric store this weekend too! My local Quilt Haus has the cutest fabric so I always end up wandering around the store thinking up more projects in my head while I'm there. Anyway, I stuck to my list (some flannel for jammies) and was rewarded at the check out with a $20 off coupon for my next visit! Woohoo! That's a good coupon in my book! Can't wait to go back and use it.

Hope you had a great weekend too!


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Old Grandma

Old Grandma visited this weekend - she's my Grandma but we now call her "Old" Grandma so the girls can differentiate from all the "Grandmas" in their lives. How lucky are they to have three Grandmas!? At first, Old Grandma was having a hard time adjusting from her trip and kept falling. So we took a day and spent it with her at my mom's house to try and bring some peace and stability to the situation. She doesn't get around much at all anymore but at 84 she's still sharp as a tack.

I cooked this fabulous Chicken and Orzo recipe for the Family (12 of us) on Friday night and I caught Old Grandma helping Baby A with her food. If I only have that moment to remember my Grandma by, I will treasure it forever. The oldest member of our family, helping the youngest keep food on her spoon and into her mouth, touched my heart. Old Grandma gets her share of the care taking these days, so seeing her give care reminded me how much she used to give to everyone else.

Watching my Grandma sew, made me want to sew. As a child, she patiently helped me thread needle after needle, sat and did crafts with me, made paper flowers... She also gave of herself through cooking and gifts. I would sit at her counter while she made me jelly rolls for breakfast - letting me eat my fill of them too! I remember her never being rushed and always having time to play a game of Uncle Wiggly. Remember that game? She never, ever yelled. I still sleep under the afgan she made me many years ago - especially when I'm feeling sick. It like a hug from Grandma. My girls still play with the doll clothes she made and there are flannel jammies waiting for them to grow into one day.

I made the girls jelly rolls yesterday for breakfast and let them eat their fill. Today we are making more skirts for their Fall closets. This little Lazy Days skirt pattern is quick to make and I love the ribbon trim!

Jelly Rolls Recipe:

1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup flour
2 eggs
2 T oil (veg oil, coconut oil or butter melted)

Mix all ingredients together. Lightly grease a small skillet and set heat to medium. Add 2 T of batter and swirl batter around in the pan until very thin. Cook about 2 min (you don't have to flip but you can if you want to cook the other side a little). Remove crepe to a paper towel lined plate. Fill center with your favorite jelly or jam (strawberry, mixed berry - they are all good!).
Eat while warm! Be ready to make many more!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Fair Days

This week marked the 115th Comal County Fair so the girls and I dove in to make things to submit to the Fair. My oldest girl made yummy cinnamon rolls, Twin One made some candy cookies and Twin Two baked a loaf of bread from my favorite bread book. They had to do it all themselves from scratch and they really did! I ended up cleaning the kitchen most of the time they were cooking, but it was fun to see them in the kitchen.  Twin Two's loaf of Boule Artisan Bread won the tri-color ribbon (Grand Prize!) for her age group.  We're very proud of her!  The others won a 2nd and 3rd place ribbons!  

Little A is still a little young to cook something completely by herself, so she wanted to make a sunflower picture. We set out all the art supplies for her to pick and choose from and we showed her how to paint with glue to make her materials stick to the paper. Then she went to work! She was so excited and kept saying "I bet I'll win a ribbon" over and over again. She did win a ribbon - 2nd place! All the girls are winners in our eyes of course, it is such a nice way to boost their self esteem by seeing them proclaimed winners in the Fair. They worked really hard! 

Our favorite spot at the Fair is the baby chicks. It something we do every year and I have pictures of them each year there. Fun to see how much they've grown from year to year. 

We saw many of our friends at the Fair and in the Midway rides. Merry Go Round, Glider, Fun Slides, Catepillar Coaster and Tea Cups are some of the girls favorites. My oldest likes the faster, spin you around like crazy rides more each year while Baby A hung on for dear life on the Merry Go Round. 

My Rock has his turn at the Fair tomorrow as he works the Swim Team food booth in the morning. He'll feel right at home with the sausages and corn on the cob! Thank goodness he loves to cook and doesn't mind volunteering his time.  

Hope whatever your weekend brings makes it fantastic! 

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


Hey! Welcome to my blog, my little space in the world, my journal of motherhood. I figure it's best to post an introduction as my first post here even though I suspect mostly friends or family to read this blog but here it goes.

I'm Lisa - it's the name my parents gave me when they adopted me as a baby. Being an adopted child will explain a lot of things about me down the road. Or at least I think it explains a lot about me. Being a wife and mother brings meaning to my life and my rock is my husband. I couldn't do half I do without him. So we have five children, all girls. Yes, all girls - we seem to only make the female species. So a house full of beauties is what my husband was meant to be surrounded by. Having a family of my own is all I ever wanted growing up - see there's that adopted child thing again. I have a tendency to go overboard or maybe it's just determination to do something right. Thus the five children! Once I figured out how I wanted to mother my girls, I just wanted to keep having babies. No, I am not currently pregnant nor do I have plans to be so. There's still time for that later - maybe. Our "baby" is going to be two years old in November and our oldest is 12 years old. Then there's my identical twin daughters whom just turned 9 years old and the child I never thought I'd have is now 4 years old.

We homeschool and run Full Circle Baby - a natural baby and mom boutique. Life is always busy, hopefully not passing us by, but living fully. Sometimes I can't remember what happened yesterday, but popping Ginko Biloba might help that if I didn't despise taking pills so much. So now I'm rambling, I'll stop. The girls anxiously await ......wait was that a crash I just heard? I'd better go investigate.


Sunday, August 10, 2008

Going Batty

Austin is just the coolest city - really. Lucky for me, it's only a short 40 minute drive. This weekend we packed up the girls one evening and headed that way to view something we've never seen before. See these people hanging around the Congress Street bridge?

As dusk approaches that same bridge starts to look more like this-

And below the bridge looks alot like this -

There's one of my twins watching..... and here's two more of my girls watching....

Finally, around 8:30pm or so what everyone has been watching and waiting for finally happens! The largest Urban Bat population takes flight out from under the Congress Street bridge! First, one little bat flys out, then a couple more, then over 1.5 million bats follow....amazing. We sat and listened to them squeak "talk" to each other for almost an hour before they took flight into the night sky. Such a neat summer evening. The exodus apparently can last about 45 minutes. We watched for awhile and the girls thought it was very neat.

This is what my camera was able to capture of them flying over our head.

Obviously, I need a much better camera to capture the millions of bats leaving their home!

If you look carefully, you can see a few of them here -

Amy's Ice Cream was the perfect ending to our summer night out in Austin. If you ever go, I recommend the Mexican Vanilla milkshake. It's rub your tummy good!


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Sum-Sum-Summer Time

Those lazy, crazy, hazy days of summer are upon us. It is H-O-T! Hurricane Dolly is heading toward us today and I do hope she brings lots of rain with her. Our grass is dying from the heat and the garden has whilted.

However, the garden experiment took off with flying colors and encouraged us to try again with more plantings next year. We hope to bring in many more fresh veggies that have been home grown in the future. The book "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" inspired me greatly and opened my eyes to many things I didn't know about our food sources. My oldest reads food labels more than I do now and won't let anything with "high fructose corn syrup" enter the house! Homemade ice cream has become a staple now instead of purchased and we are getting really good at it. This recipe was a favorite and one that needs repeating! You just can't beat ice cream made with raw milk and is so yummy and healthy.

We just returned from a trip to Dallas to visit family, attend the LLL of TX conference and (most important to the girls) go to the American Girl Store. Fun for all! As I unpacked the past few days and caught up the store, I realized how much the store needed to be updated. That was done today along with plenty of reordering of products.

BumGenius 3.0 is our best selling diaper and obviously a favorite among many families. I have a hard time keeping it in stock and if I forget to reorder one week, then it unfortunately becomes a back ordered item. So, I've bumped up the inventory on this again and hope to reach really good stock levels to keep this from happening in the future. We'll be rolling in the diapers once more very soon! Boxes of cotton prefolds arrived this week and are waiting to be unpacked. These are really big boxes and heavy. There is something about the smell of new prefolds being unpacked though - very earthy.

Some other shop updates - I've put a few items in the Clearance section to make room in my storage area. So there are some really good deals there if you haven't looked lately! Also, Zolowear Slings are on sale this month and Baby Legs. There are some fun summer prints for Baby Legs and it's a good time to stock up for the Fall when they are on sale - right? :)

I'll try to not be so invisible the rest of the summer. I'm actually thinking of starting another blog that would be more personal and keep this one for the shop updates - still just thinking on that though. Off to paint the spare bedroom - what better things to do in the summer than to paint inside!


Thursday, May 8, 2008

Baby UP!

The Japanese Tea Gardens have reopened in San Antonio - just 30-40 min from our town of New Braunfels. The girls and I took Grandma there this Spring to view the wonderful flowers and waterfall. It's a little scary with a 1 1/2 yr old trying to navigate the many steps but the key was to just keep her up in the Beco!

Most of those who know me, know I'm a huge baby wearing fan and will wear my daughter most anywhere. I prefer having her on me than in the shopping cart or stroller. She's getting quite heavy though (she did enter the world at 10.3 lbs!) and at 17 months I'm sure she is closing in on the 30 lbs mark. I need to weigh her soon.... The Beco has been the best investment I've made. It's a soft structured baby carrier and oh so pretty! Dear Jeff even wore Miss Abbey on his back while hiking up (or was it down) the Enchanted Rock in Frederickburg, TX. I think I was the lucky one who wore her going up!!! Talk about a work out... It makes me sweat just thinking about doing that again. The Beco uses both shoulders and a nice padded waist strap to support the weight of the child. When you aren't using it or your child wants down, it folds up nicely around your waist and is secured with a strap (looks like a fanny pack at this point) so you don't end up carrying it around all day. Of course, I like the pretty prints it comes in too. We are working on adding this to our store since I'm such a huge fan of the product. The Beco company is small, but growing so hopefully we'll be an approved retailer soon. In the meantime, I know another wonderful company that carries them - Cotton Babies. As a retailer for their BumGenius! One Size Diapers, I can vouch for their supreme customer service and they usually have a nice selection of products to choose from.

Where will you wear your baby today? Leave me a comment and let me know the most unusual place you've worn your baby and what kind of carrier you use most!
xo Lisa

This just in....

Something fun! We're participating in the Baby Legs "Sew Golden" event which will run June 1st - July 15th. Every pair of Baby Legs is sewn with a golden overlock stitch to prevent raveling and enhance durability. During the event period, all packages of Baby Legs will be stuffed with prizes!!! Prizes include Buy 1 Get 1 Free coupons, coupons for free products from various children's companies and the grand prize of a trip to Seattle! Who coupldn't use a trip to the "Sleepless" city??? There are some super cute new prints out as well and they will be in our store soon. Names like Popsicle, Sweet Pea (that's in the pic above), Sherbet and more are on their way to us.

Watch our homepage at for the start of the Baby Legs event! Maybe one of my customers will win the grand prize! How exciting..... but you'll take me with you to Seattle won't you??? ;)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Permission to breathe

Days are passing into months and months into years. Is it too cliche to say "time flys"? I've thrown myself head, foot and tail into homeschooling my three oldest girls and we have been busy. Good busy though. Thus, my lack of posting on such important topics (see below)!
One day this week (I believe it was Monday), I gave us a permission to breathe day. There was filing to do, bills to pay, laundry to wash & fold (yes, put away too), and just general "stuff" that has been piling up. Feeling a bit swamped, I decided to take a day to take care of it all. What a blessing that was too. With it all out of the way, we were free again to plunge into schooling and life (thus creating more piles - but that's okay).

Is this not the cutest, most inventive thing you've seen in a long time?? Allie's been testing it out for us to see if it's something we should add to the store. She's given it her thumbs up so keep watch out for a listing in the store soon!
The weather is turning very warm here in South Texas (I think it's actually 95 today). Time to head to the wading pool..... the ducks are calling (at least my 3 year old thinks they are!). Quack!


Saturday, January 26, 2008

On the horizon...

Many things to get to today, but I have a to-do list for this blog as well! Coming soon I want to write about the "greenest" way to cloth diaper. This came about after viewing this segment on Good Morning America by Dr. Greene himself.

Also on the list, a want to try and get a video up on how to wash wool. I get this question over and over again. I know it seems intimidating to wash wool for the first time, but it's really easy.
I've never attempted video online though so please bear with me on this one! I'd love to get up a video of one of our cloth diapering consultations as well. But let me start small first!

I just installed (okay - Jeff did it) Photoshop Elements 6 on the computer in attempts to start keeping my pics organized and hopefully make some cute digital scrapbooking pages. There's no way I have time to pull out supplies and pictures to scrapbook by hand, so this digital scrapbooking might actually be something I can do. Plus, it will be so cool to edit pictures for our website. The book says it can even edit out wrinkles....very cool.

What else? Maybe some peeks at homeschooling, new books I'm trying to read and some crafts we've finished. We're trying to plan a vacation for this Spring too. I'm torn between visiting family and an educational trip (D.C. and Williamsburg, VA) vs. a trip to the coast in a beach house for week. Okay - so maybe I'm really not that torn.... ;).

Happy Weekend!
~xo, Lisa

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Dying Wool

So what was cooking in that pot in the previous post? Wool of course! "What?", you say? Yes, we were dying wool on the stove. Wool is an animal fiber and takes dye nicely. Kool aid dying is a favorite method to change the color of wool and very easy to do.

First, pick your colors. There are many websites/blogs that will give you good visuals on the colors that each "flavor" of kool aid produce. You will need several packets - depending on the amount of wool you will be dying in each batch. If you want a lighter color, then use less - use more for darker colors. If you want a tie dye effect - use less and see what fun project turns up!

Gather your materials: wool (fabric or yarn), kool aid packets, big pot, and spoon.

Wet the wool in the sink in lukewarm water while you dissolve the kool aid in the pot. Put a few cups of lukewarm water in the pot to mix with your kool aid packets. When the kool aid is dissolved, add more water (you will want enough to cover the wool once it is in the pot). Add the wet wool to the kool aid mixture in the pot. Set the pot on the stove and turn on high (like you were going to boil it). As the mixture heats, be sure to stir often and turn the wool around. You will notice the wool taking color and the water in the pot will turn clear. When the water is completely clear (this usually happens before the water actually boils), turn off the stove and remove the pot from the heat. Let cool. Do not remove the wool from the pot until the water is cool - room temperature cool. Once cool, take the wool from the pot and rinse it under luke warm water. You can wash the wool at this point with some wool wash too. We like to use Sudzndudz liquid wool wash. Squeeze the excess water from the wool and lay flat to dry on a towel or rack.

Viola! You've just dyed wool with kool aid! Perk - your kitchen gets to smell like pink lemonade or maybe kiwi strawberry! :) Oh, what fun project will you create with your new wool? Diaper covers? Wool pants for a little one?

Here's a stack of wool we dyed:
(top pink lemonade, middle grape, bottom was a mixture of black cherry, strawberry and pink lemonade)

Some yoga baby pants I made for our Sweetness - perfect for winter diapering and bedtimes:

I like this pattern but next time I might size it down as the pants came out a little larger than the size chart suggested.
I should be catching up on my bookkeeping, but this was so much fun I wanted to share it with you!