Friday, April 29, 2011

ArtVend - Bringing Art to the Public

Our community has a pretty active group of artists, Ames, The goal of the organization is to make art accessible to the public. Last year they painted a mural on one of the buildings in Campus Town (near the ISU campus).

This year, they would like to purchase a vending machine and retro fit it so that it will vend small pieces of art created by local artists. The prices for the art will range from $1-$20. If I understand correctly, the location of the vending machine will rotate through out Ames giving access to more people.

In order to make this a reality, they need help with the funding. If interested in learning more, you can go here for more info.

Thanks for checking it out!

V is for Vulture

Saturday, April 23, 2011


Emma has been reading!

Not like, sitting down and reading "War and Peace", but she does a pretty good job with the books by Mo Williems. She really likes "I Will Fly Today" a lot. She will start to recite it, then catch herself adding words, and correct herself. I really enjoy watching her while she is reading.

Is it bad that I bribe Emma to get her to practice reading?

Is it odd that I bribe Emma to read a book on her "own" so that I can read her 2 chapters of Bella Sara (we just finished #8 "Peppers Quest" ) at bedtime?

And I have discovered that if I sit and focus with her on the book she is reading, she has a hard time reading. If I am sitting next to her but working on a project, she does a much better job. It may make me sound like a lazy mom, but I think if she knows I am "unavailable" she is willing to do more and learn more on her own.

I am trying to be more available to Emma. Some days I am better then others. Some days we spend the entire day doing stuff together.

And some days Emma is so whinny that I can't stand it. I could understand the continued whining if it actually got her what she was whining for. But it never does. It usually gets her sent to her room.

Which honestly, isn't much of a punishment because that is where 98% of her toys are and about 50% of her books. Oh, and her CD player with audio books and music CD's.

I wish sometimes I could get sent to her room.

And we are still trying to figure out the fear thing. Since Da has gotten home, Emma seems to feel a little safer, but she still demands to know if the door is locked each night before lights out. We usually have to go out and check for her.

When we got the oil changed yesterday, she started tearing up while in the waiting room. She was worried about being an adult again. I gave her a hug, reminded her she is 5 and that she has a long way to go before she is an adult. That and some hot chocolate seemed to help.

Here are a few photos from this month.

Playing with words after Emma read "Fat Cat" to Jared and I at dinner time. 

First horse lesson of the year.

Emma riding Willy the pony and Miss Paige listening while Emma talks her ear off. Paige is one of the few adults Emma is comfortable enough with to just talk and talk. 

Our dog, Icky, with a rare treat. I let him snuggle on the couch and Emma decided he needed a blanket.

Emma and a doll I made.

Emma is on the floor, Icky is on the couch. Must be backwards day...

I hope that you all (assuming anyone is ready) have a great weekend!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Dealing With Fear

Out and About- Emma's Photos (41)

I could use some help.

Emma has been really fearful lately. Not of monsters in the closet, or anything else I would expect a 5 yo to be afraid of.

And I can't seem to alleviate her mind. It doesn't seem to matter what I say, she still seems irrationally afraid.

For example.

Last night, Emma went to bed in my bed. She asked me when I would be going to bed.

Not really unusual. She asks this more nights then not.

The unusual part was when she asked where I would be (in the kitchen). And if the doors where locked (they were). And if the windows were all locked (I checked and they were).

I gave her a kiss and assured her I would check on her in 3 minutes.

I made it to the kitchen (about 50 steps from the bedroom) before she started crying. I went back in and talked to her some more. She wasn't worried that I would leave (I asked, she said no). She was worried that someone would get into the house hurt me.

We talked a bit more and she seemed to settle down. I told her I was going to be sewing in the kitchen. She would be able to hear my sewing machine, so she would know I was ok.

I got to the kitchen and began sewing. When I finished the piece I was sewing, I stopped and started to cut out the next piece. I could hear Emma calling me from the bedroom in a worried voice. She was saying, "I can't hear your sewing machine!" and I could tell she was crying again. I tired to explain that I was just cutting something out.

I ended up going back in. I sat with her until she fell asleep.

Through each of the times I went into the bedroom, we would talk about what was upsetting her. She kept asking what would happen if someone got into the house. She thought our house was unsafe. When I asked her why, she said, "Because we don't have any guns or anything!"

I assured her that just because we don't have any guns, doesn't mean we are not safe. I told her that I could do some serious damage with my hands, feet, head, and teeth. I also reminded her that we have Icky, our dog. He barks when the wind blows so I reminded her that he would bark his fool head off if someone tried to get into the house. And he has big teeth.

Now, my child does not watch t.v other then PBS and DVD's.  All the DVD's she has access to are Disney, or the same type of movies. I have no idea where this fear is coming from.

Tonight, while we were eating dinner, she started to get upset. When I asked her why she was upset, she started crying and said, "I don't want to be an adult!"

And then she started crying even harder! I missed most of what she said, but I think I caught something about her not wanting to be alive as an adult.

I started to get a little more worried. I cuddled her in my lap and we talked about it. She was worried because she didn't know how to be an adult.

When I asked her if she thought adults have rules, she said yes. "Like what?" I asked her. "I don't know how to drive." I reminded her she was only 5, and that she did know some of the rules for driving. I asked her about stop lights, and she knew them. "But I don't know how to stop the car!"  I assured her she would have driving lessons when she was old enough to sit in the front seat.

When I asked her what she was worried about for when she is an adult, another reply was, "I want my kids to have a loft bed, but I don't know how to make one <sob>!"

I told her when she gets older and wants to build her kids a loft bed, all she has to do is pick up the phone and give me a call. I would come over and show her how to make it. I told her Da would probably come over too.

She seemed pretty upset about it all still, but then the moment passed and she was being silly again.

At a different point in the day, she kept asking me when we would be moving. She wanted to move before the house caught on fire. I assured her our house is safe.

When she was getting ready for bed, she started to get upset again. I told her I would be sitting with her until she fell asleep. She kept asking when we would be moving, when I thought the house might burn down, etc. I pointed out the smoke detectors. After explaining to her how they work, she seemed a little more at ease.

She fell asleep a lot quicker then I expected.

But I am at a loss. Do all 5 year olds have these fears?

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Photo Silliness

It has been good to be home. An entire week even.

Emma and I had some fun this week. I made a very conscious effort to spend more time with Emma, not just near Emma.

We did a lot of snuggling on the couch watching t.v. or reading magazines (that I told her she couldn't cut up until we read them at least once). I may not have done as much as I would have liked, but I did do better then usual.

We did lots of crafty and artistic things this week, but I have to say my favorite was when Emma's Karate show turned into an impromptu and very silly photo shoot.

(Her karate show consisted of her kicking things around her room)

In walks Icky, the dog, and he distracts the photographer (that would be me).

He wants snuggles so I oblige, while still taking photos.

Emma is not one to be left out when photos are being taken:
And for some reason this photo gave me an idea...

Close up eye photos!

I wanted to take close up pictures of Emma's beautiful eyes. We took about 30 eyeball pictures, but I decided to spare you from all of them. The one above is significant because after this one I tried to move some hair out of Emma's face and...

I poked her in the eye. Oops, there goes mama of the year award (again)

I might have still had a chance except I photographed her pain. Not once, 
but twice. Shame on me. 

Could't be helped, even when her eye has been poked, she is still stinking cute!

Thankfully it wasn't too bad of an eye poking, she got right back into the photo mood and wanted to get a picture with Icky. 

Icky, however, wasn't going to get that close to Emma without giving her a kiss. 

I then decided I wanted to take a picture of Emma's nose, but she wouldn't just sit there. She kept making this face:

Which of course led to this,
I love it when she laughs. 

Just as we decided to be done taking pictures, we realized that,
Da was home!

Which of course led to sharing the silliness with him. 

Friday was a great day :)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Lazy Stay Home Days

I am happy to admit that we are the type of people that are happy to hang out at home for days on end, not really doing much of anything.

Especially after the craziness of the last few weeks and months. 

If we had our way, we would stay home 5-7 days of the week with no real agenda. That isn't always practical, and we do occasionally really want to get out of the house. 

But not usually. 

This week, my first full week home, has been a good mix of out and about vs. stay home. 

Saturday, Emma and I went to the Iowa State Horse Fair. It was pretty cool, and the weather was nice. 
"Mama, how did they get glitter on their horses butts?"

Sunday the two of us went to help out at the Des Moines Swap-o-Rama-Rama. It was pretty cool. I managed to find a shirt that has a Pegasus on it and I made it into dress for Emma. I need to make some cute pants to go with it. 

Monday we had plans for friends to visit, but they were not feeling well, so we had 1/2 a stay home day. We did get a new radio for the car (the old one ate a CD and wouldn't give it back). While waiting for the radio to be installed, Emma and I hung out at Borders.

Tuesday I thought Emma had a Dr. appointment at 9am, but it wasn't until 2:30pm. I didn't want to have to drive an hour again later in the day so we rescheduled the appointment. Then our friends came over and hung out the rest of the day. 

Wednesday was a playdate at the park. It was a bit chilly for the adults, but the kids where running around and warm. Great fun was had by all!

Thursday was a beloved lazy stay home day. We worked on making inchies (1"x1" pieces of art work), picked up a little, watched a lot of t.v, played on the computer, read some magazines, did a load of laundry, and just lazed. It was awesome. I even managed to get a decent meal on the table. Spaghetti. Yum. 

Friday, today, looks like we get another lazy stay home day. I had thought about driving into town with Jared to do groceries while he was at school, but Emma was really into her imaginative play. It seems like with all the has been going on, her imaginative play has suffered. I was enjoying listening to her play so I made the decision to stay home. 

A few photos of some of the crafty things Emma and I have done this week. 

 This was suppose to be a clock, but the hands couldn't go around because the bark was too thick. Oh well, it will look great hanging on one of the walls in our house :)
 Emma made all the giraffe inchies. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Time Flies...

when things are going crazy. Here is a link to my other blog with an explanation of what has been going on.

On the Emma front, things have been good. She lost another tooth, this time naturally.

She seems to have grown a bunch, but I haven't gotten around to measuring her.

And she is sounding out words a lot quicker then she had been before the craziness started.

Other then that, I honestly don't know much. I am a little out of touch with my child at the moment, but thankfully I knew she was in great hands while she was with Gramma (my MIL) while I was taking care of my grandmother.

Emma, Jared, and I have had some serious family together time this past weekend and we look forward to little bits here and there as we can steal them.

I am glad to be home, glad to be with my family, and glad to be getting back into the rhythm of things.

A few photos of my beautiful cowgirl.