We are in this most incredible phase right now (and I say ‘phase’ only to appease the gods that would otherwise surely send plagues of locusts and tantrums to punish me for my conceit, but I’m sincerely hoping that this might actually just be what it’s like to have big kids?) I swear, this actually happened:

Juniper (bouncing on my bed with Quinn while I pretend I’m still asleep): “Mom, wanna build a fort with me?”

Me: “Maybe in, like, five minutes.”

Juniper: “Ok, I’ll go make a drawing while I’m waiting.” (Proceeds to open the baby gate, help Quinn down the stairs – “On your tummy! Go backwards!”, get out her art supplies, lay out crayons and paper on the floor for Quinn, work on art quietly for over half an hour, and then get tape to hang her art and Quinn’s on the wall. And then they both wander over to the play room, each pick out their own books and sit, reading quietly to themselves.)

I lay there in bed slowly realizing that they were downstairs and content without me, and decided to see how far I could push my luck. I showered, dried my hair, brushed my teeth, got dressed, and made the beds… still no crying. I began to wonder if they’d figured out how to unlock the patio door and escape. Instead, I came downstairs and found this:

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They didn’t even look up at me! I got the camera and came back and they were still doing it! This was bigger than a small miracle, this was a medium sized miracle at least. I walked away and unloaded the dishwasher, unobstructed. Sure, Quinn had drawn at least as much on the floor as she did on the paper, and yes, she also ground craypas into the rug, and stepped in playdoh, but you know what? I can live with that.

I know that this is probably, at best, just the calm between the twin storms of Juniper turning three and then Quinn turning three, but if the next eighteen months are like this, they are going to be a GOOD eighteen months. I like to imagine I will be well rested and fully able to handle Quinn’s threenager self with a grace I didn’t possess for June’s.

I mean, seriously, how cute are these two?

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Juniper, my little artist, has had some seriously awesome ideas and has been amazingly independent when left to her “work”. Picking up a stick and asking me if we could make it into a weaving, pulling the broken paper handle off the grocery bag and turning it into a pet snake, constructing little houses for her pet rocks and little plastic dinosaurs. I am so proud of her confidence that we can make anything she thinks of that we need (missing puzzle pieces, broken toys, torn clothes: “That’s ok, we can make a new one.”)

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Also, a brilliant one liner from this week: the Play and Learn instructor read a cute book about pets and asked the toddlers if they had any pets. Juniper eagerly announces, “My cat is dead and a hawk ate my chickens!” (referring to Bunk, who died when she was a newborn, and the chickens that were eaten not long after). I basically spit my coffee across the room.

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Oh and Quinn, I didn’t forget about you. This one. Now if she wakes up at night, she jabbers to herself for a minute or two and then starts calling, “Maaaaaamaaaaa… where aaaaaaare you?” in this casual, sing-song voice like she uses for hide-and-seek. All she wants me to do is pop my head in the door and whisper, “Quinn, goodnight” and she goes right back to sleep. Unbelievable.

It’s occurring to me that maybe I shouldn’t type these things. Even if the universe doesn’t punish me, all the other parents might start to hate me.

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Suffice it to say, the kids are good.

I’m good, too. My shop had a good last month and I’ve got two custom orders going right now, which are the most fun (working with the couples to figure out meaningful imagery, and then doing all the design work, rather than just production). These were a few I shipped out last week:

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One last fun project: I’ve been wanting to paint our bedroom. I love a yellow bedroom, but with the west facing window it is straight up blinding in the morning. Like, Juniper has been known to run in, shielding her eyes, and flick the light switch, convinced we have all the lights on. In any case, I want to paint it a dark blue, like somewhere in between navy and teal. I found the perfect hue (Benjamin Moore’s Naples Blue) but then decided I’d actually like to do an accent wall with wallpaper. And because no paper I could find was perfect, and because I’m OCD like that, and, you know, because I have the mad skills, I decided to design my own and print it via Spoonflower.

Made this little mock up with something approximating our furniture and wall angles.

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I actually tweaked the design a bit after I saw it with the full repeat so it will be a little different than this, but sexy, huh? I’m going to be dreaming of the tropics. Throw some brass accents in there, a few plants, maybe swap out some of the art. I’ve always found it really satisfying to modify my environment. Sometimes I’m embarrassed I’d dedicate this much mental energy to something that is, at the end of the day, totally superficial, but damn, it’s fun. My mom’s coming over her spring break to help me put the paper up; I’ll post pics when it’s done.

Bring on the spring projects, right?

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