Monday, December 12, 2011

Sewing Saturday

This Saturday I decided to set my knitting needles aside and focus on sewing some projects that have been on my "project list" for a while now (it's an ever growing list).  My serger needle had broken a while back and since it's pretty old I had to order more online.  So once they came in I decided it was time to mark a few things off my list!  I had fun and was very pleased with the outcome of my work!  I am not at all an accomplished seamstress and typically like to stick to simple sewing, with no real detailed patterns.  Having said this, I am addicted to the remnant bin at Jo-Ann Fabric, and that is the place I picked up all the materials I used for these projects, outside of the napkins.
I absolutely love cloth wipes and needed some more.  These are made out of flannel and are double-sided.

This and the next are a couple of several blankets I made for gifts.  Each has a side of fleece and a side of soft, cuddly material for little hands and faces.

Cloth napkins I fashioned out of old tablecloths that we never use.

All of my day's work.  :)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Major Leaguer?

We have found that Will is pretty good at hitting the ball with his bat, but have been unsuccessful at catching him on video until today.  Most often he sees the camera and loses all focus on anything else.  :)  Here's a couple of fun videos of him hitting balls.  He hasn't mastered the two-handed swing yet, as you will see.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Bodin Turkey Trot

This Thanksgiving Carl came up with a new Bodin tradition...a family Turkey Trot run.  I too thought this was a good idea until I woke up to a Thanksgiving morning temp of 34 degrees.  :)  Oh well, survived well enough.  You can see the kids in snowsuits.  Ha.  Will enjoyed himself, not wanting to turn toward home.  Fun making traditions of our own.  :)

Love this pic...Carl was practicing setting up the camera on the tripod.  Will was his practice model.  :)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Aquarium Trip

Sorry I have been so negligent on blogging!  On Veteran's Day we took Will to the aquarium for the first time.  He was fascinated and loved even the tide pool where you can touch sea creatures (he tends to be skeptical about touching something he is unsure of).  We will definitely have to go back!

Top part of the huge cylindrical tank that runs through the middle of the building.  

Tide pool.

I basically couldn't get over these huge turtles.

I have never seen a sea lion that looks like this one.  Will kept calling him a "doggie". 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Fire trucks!

During Fire Prevention Week the fire department on base set up a fun day with demonstrations and bouncy houses for the kids.  I had to take Will because like most all little boys he LOVES fire trucks!  Oh yes, and bouncy houses are pretty high on his list of "likes" too.  :)  As we were walking up to the park there were two fire trucks parked on the street and one on the grass.  I was carrying Will on my back and all I hear is "Fire truck!  Fire truck!  FIRE TRUCK!"...each said as he saw each truck.  He was pretty excited.  :)

The bouncy house Will scurried into as quick as he could. :)

One BIG fire truck.

Will was fascinated, but didn't want to get too close to this one, so he took a squat and just examined it for a while.

Playing with his goodies---fire hat and paper fire truck.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Marsh Visit

One Saturday we decided to bike out to the marsh and walk around a bit.  It was a good time and fun to see.  There are plenty of great nature places to explore around here and this was one of our last chances to get out before the weather gets too cool for biking.  Will loves exploring outside and had fun walking in the marsh, as well as throwing anything he could into the water...just what boys love to do!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Big Boy Haircut

Will recently had his first real hair cut.  Since his hair is much like his Mommy's was at his age---slow-growing and fine, he didn't need a real cut for quite a while.  :)  Here's a couple before and after pics.  It's a little tough to see since his hair is so blond and since he really still doesn't have much of it.  :) Oh yes, and apparently his nose was a bit of a mess at the time, sorry about that.  Also it's impossible to get this kiddo to stand still long enough to get a good pic, so the angles vary.  ;)

I only included this crazy one so you can see the side of his head.  :)

New cut...not terribly different.  Daddy just buzzed up the sides and back and Mommy did a little trimming up top.  :)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Homemade Cleaners

I started thinking about making my own household cleaners a little over a year ago.  With a little one crawling (at the time) and sticking his hands in and on everything, and then into his mouth, I wanted to ensure that my cleaners were all-natural. Being the, ahem..."thrifty" (or just cheap) person that I am thought that what better way to know my cleaners are safe is to make them myself, not to mention that this is the most inexpensive way.  It just so happened that a good friend of mine told me that she already made her own cleaners.  So, I got a recipe or two from her and then she gave me a whole book with recipes for my birthday!  The first things I made were a simple spray to use on my kitchen counters and dishwasher detergent.  I desperately try to avoid doing any dishes by hand, and run the dishwasher once, sometimes twice daily and it seemed like I was buying detergent every other week.  So I made my own powdered version and haven't looked back since!  Recently I decided to finally venture into making my own laundry detergent and was amazed with the results!  I was very wary of this because I REALLY liked my Tide, especially for my cloth diapers.  After experimenting with a few recipes, I finally found one that works wonderfully and for SO CHEAP!  So, for all you thrifty mama's out there, here are a few recipes for you to try (if you like)!

Disclaimer:  Many natural recipes use essential oils and the liquid ones use castile soap (Dr.Bronner's liquid castile soap can be found at Target or Whole Foods).  These items are costly initially, but will last you FOREVER!  I started a year ago and still haven't replaced either.  Essential oils have antibiotic, antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties, depending on which you choose.  I like to use those that have all, such as lemon, eucalyptus, and lavender essential oils.

Laundry Detergent
I found the Duggar family recipe to be the best I have used:
Powdered Laundry Detergent
Liquid Laundry Detergent
The only adjustment I made was that I used homemade bar soap (from my Grandpa), but the recipe says you can use the Naptha soap they use or Dove.  Not sure where you find the Naptha.  Also, I added 15 drops of Lemon essential oil to the detergent for scent and antibacterial properties (I just like to have some scent to my detergent).  I use 1 T. for an average/medium load and large loads that are not heavily soiled.  For heavily soiled (kids clothes) I use 2 and for my cloth diapers I use 3.  

Dishwaster Detergent - Lavender Lift Dishwasher Powder
This recipe came from my book The Naturally Clean Home by Karyn Siegel-Maier (find it on Amazon).
2 c. borax
2 c. washing soda
20 drops lavender essential oil

Use 1 T in your wash compartment and I use 1 T in the rinse compartment of my dishwasher.  Works great!  Only thing is sometimes it leaves a little whitish film on plastic bottles, but that doesn't bother me.  :)

Kitchen Surfaces Spray - Lemon Blast Cleaner (also from book)
1 t. liquid castile soap
1/8 c. white vinegar
1/4 c. lemon juice
2 c. water
6 drops citrus seed extract (I use lemon essential oil)
4 drops lemon, lime, orange, or eucalyptus essential oil (I again use lemon or eucalyptus)
1 t. borax

Combine in plastic spray bottle and shake.  Spray on surface, wipe, and dry.  This has all the properties of lemon essential oil, so I use it to clean counters even after raw chicken has come into contact with it.

Wonderspray (all-purpose cleaner)
 2 T. vinegar
1 t. borax
2 c. very hot water
1/4 c. liquid castile soap
10-15 drops essential oil (I use lemon or eucalyptus)

Smash any borax clumps, mix vinegar and borax in spray bottle. Add hot water and shake until borax is dissolved. Add castile soap and essential oil and shake/stir to mix!  This one is great for all-around from kitchen counter tops to carpet stains.

The Duggar's also have a couple recipes for homemade fabric softener: Fabric Softener Recipes.  I have not used them, however I have used vinegar in my Downy ball.  It works great on my cloth diapers, but I use fabric sheets for my clothes, as they are cheap and get rid of static cling and vinegar does not.  Sorry this is so long, but thought it was worth sharing! :)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Happy Birthday Song

Ever since Will's 2nd birthday in August, he has been periodically singing the birthday song and has progressively gotten better at it.  Carl's birthday was last week and since then he has been singing it daily.  Today he was doing such a good job and I was actually able to film him.  :)  The second video might make you a little dizzy at the end, as he was moving around me and I was having trouble finding him with the camera.  Just FYI, I think he is saying "Happy Birthday Willdaddy" when it comes to saying the name in the song.  Sorry the video is a bit's our camera video.  :)

Monday, October 3, 2011

Family Pics

It's been a while since I've blogged and it's been a while since I posted a family picture, so I thought I'd do that.  I know it's fun to see what people look like when you don't get to see them regularly (I always enjoy all of your pictures of yourselves, fellow bloggers).  :)  So here's some family pics of us currently and a few of Will's funny expressions.

These two crack me up b/c he's saying "Cheese!".  Not exactly the look I was hoping for.  :) 

Monday, September 12, 2011

A Day at the Park

A couple weeks ago we took a bike ride to Lexington Battle Green or Lexington Common to play and explore a little bit.  Daddy pulled Will in the bike trailer.  The Lexington Common is where the opening shots of the Revolutionary War were fired.

The next three pictures are of Will and Daddy playing a game.  Daddy would chase Will around the tree and then hide so when Will came around the tree he would have to "find" Daddy. Will thought it was hilarious.   I love the look on Will's face in the last picture where he found Daddy after running around the tree. 
Sword fighting. :)
Daddy would be "shocked" when they touched sticks. Will thought this to be a great game, too.  You can see he is chasing after Daddy to "shock" him. :)