play space 2.0

MMBplayspace20132up21.jpg

Not only is it a new year, but it's also the last year of my 20's. I've set some goals I'd like to achieve before entering my third decade, and one of them is to make every room in our home work. I'd like the attic to finally be a working studio and the basement to be a project/game room for the kids. I'd like every closet and every drawer to only contain what is meant to be there. I'd like everything to have a spot. The home environment has such a direct impact on the tone and rhythm of family life. I look forward to streamlining and beautifying!

I plan to track my progress here and started out our little tour in the family room (slash studio, slash office) yesterday. Today, I bring you our play space, 2.0. I'll be honest, after all the attention my last play space got, I was really hesitant to change anything. Would the space lose the magic? I decided to take my chances and completely rearrange the room to better suit our needs now. We've added a rug to warm it up, a comfy chair for story time and playstands for more imaginative play possibilities.

MMBplayspace20132up22.jpg

This is my favorite room in the house. It's light, bright and airy. The toys are so beautiful and so played with. Most importantly, we spend many happy, calm hours in this room everyday. I dare say, I like this incarnation even more than the last. What do you think?

(As I was putting together this post, I realized that this is the third January in a row that I have posted a little tour of our play space. If you'd like, take a look at the evolution!)

at home

IMG_9257.JPG
IMG_9034.JPG
IMG_9055.JPG
IMG_9059.JPG
IMG_9067.JPG
IMG_9072.JPG
IMG_9074.JPG
IMG_9273.JPG

A lot has happened since I posted here last. My sweet baby girl turned one! Oh my. A long post coming about that soon. The crappy thing is I had pneumonia for over two weeks. It was awful. I spent most of my waking hours at home for so many days. Barely getting out of bed for almost a week. It was bad. I am on the mend, though, and I've had a nice couple days at home with the girls. There is much to be grateful for.

clare & kenny

IMG_5322.JPG

You met Clare a while back, but I don't think I ever introduced Kenny. He is Clare's big brother and is very nice and fun. (Much like another big brother around these parts!)

I wanted to put together a post about our dolls because of something Fiona said the other day at the book store. We were playing with some of the stuffed animals there and I was playing the part of a stuffed Minnie Mouse. One of Fiona's characters had done something mean to Minnie and so I made Minnie start crying. Fiona said, "What are you doing?" and Minnie said, "Crying." Then Fiona said, "If you're crying, why are you smiling?!" Good question, Fiona. That, my friends, is why I love Waldorf Dolls.

IMG_5164.JPG
IMG_5175.JPG

The simple features allow children to attribute all kinds of emotions to their dolls. So much of children's play is their way of processing events in their lives. If every doll they have has a huge smile on their face, it makes it difficult to play out the less than ecstatic part of life.

IMG_5199.JPG

Clare and Kenny were made by the Q'ewar Project. We love them and they are absolutely beautiful.

what it's really about

IMG_3525.JPG

I talked a little last week about watching my children play. I love it so. Self-initiated, independent play is such an important part of exploring and learning about the world around them. I am so aware that this stage won't last forever. Babies don't keep, as they say.

The thing is, since this blog has more readers than I expected, more than just family and friends, sometimes I worry about boring you. I start to feel like I should post something new! And exciting! But then I'd be getting away from what this blog is really about. A record of our beautiful family life. A place we can always visit to remember and relive special moments and everyday moments. 

So, I guess I am kind of reclaiming this space as my own. Not that I ever lost it, but maybe I felt like it should be something different. Or something more. Like I would be missing an opportunity if I didn't make it bigger and better. But, I am not a 'Blogger' (with a capital B). And I think I'm good with that. This blog is about my kids. It's about me and my family. Stuff we make or do, places we go. That's enough. That's what feels right.

I don't want to forget the everyday moments, so I am going to try to post pictures like this more often. Our life at home. These are of Fiona playing with her play silks. She wraps them around her as capes and dresses. She throws them in the air and they become fireworks. She lays them over her dolls and they become blankets.

IMG_3523.JPG
IMG_3530.JPG

And some pictures of the girls at their kitchen. Fiona looking like a little mama standing on her chair to reach the top shelf. And Elsa holding her own just fine.

alwaysplayingjuly8.jpg
alwaysplayingjuly82.jpg

Life is sweet. Remember that.

IMG_3570.JPG

sick days

IMG_3170.JPG

We have all been sick now for over a week. I overheard the Mama hen consoling her sick chick this morning. You know that your household has been sick a long time when even the stuffed animals start coughing. The only upside to all this coughing and sneezing is that we've spent a lot of time at home, which means the girls have had lots of time to play with their toys.

The hen and chick were handmade by my friend, Liz. Aren't they sweet?

IMG_3176.JPG
IMG_3069.JPG
IMG_3078.JPG
IMG_3151.JPG
IMG_3110.JPG

One of the unexpectedly awesome parts of motherhood is watching my children play. Fiona's quiet concentration as she dresses Clare. Elsa's strong determination as she pulls herself up just a little higher to reach a toy. Elijah's focus as he builds something with his Legos, one piece at a time.

I love how the Winnie-the-Pooh stories immortalized the imagined world of the author's son. I would love to do a series of drawings and stories based on our own cast of characters. That would be nice... as it's a bit heartbreaking to think of how ephemeral this phase of imaginative play really is. I guess that's the main purpose of this blog. It is a place where we can go back and visit these special but fleeting times. When I started this post, I had no idea it was going in such a sentimental direction. I'm even tearing up a little bit. I am such a lucky Mama. Is this beautiful life really mine?

IMG_3149.JPG

the three thrifted porridge bowls

ThriftedBowls.JPG

Aren't these cute? Fiona's really into Goldilocks and the Three Bears, so I couldn't resist when we found this sweet set at the flea market. They sure do look adorable on the shelves of Fiona's play kitchen.

Goldilocks (played by Genevieve, the Autumn Fairy) got right to work testing porridge and proclaiming it "too hot!", "too cold!" and "just right!"

ThriftedBowls2.JPG
ThriftedBowls3.JPG