Thursday, May 22, 2014

Hello Warm Weather - an outdoor adventure and messy art

The girls and I are thrilled to have the warm weather back. This week we went on one of our favorite adventures from last summer. Our friends Julie and Cristina joined us. We took the T into Boston to welcome the return of the farmers' markets and then over to the Public Garden for a picnic lunch. The geese and the ducks and swan boats were all out enjoying the sunshine. The girls welcomed the Mallards and their adorable little ducklings by quack quack quacking, ran around the trees, and ate with that particular hunger that comes when eating outside after a good long walk.

This morning we had messy outdoor art. I brought out a large piece of paper, the last of our washable paint, and some toy cars. As soon as I said we were doing Messy Art, Alessia's eyes lit up. I reminded them of my two rules - don't paint your face on purpose and don't paint your clothes on purpose. They are both actually really good about following those rules, and beyond that I don't fuss. Alessia always ends up with a little on her face as she brushes her hair away and their clothes are always covered in paint, but it always washes out. I made big blobs of paint on the paper and showed the girls how to roll the cars through it. Alessia joined in. Olivia was more interested in scooping paint out of the cut open tubes, so I let her do that. We made hand prints and dragged leaves and sticks through the paint. Alessia requested brushes, so out they came as well. After the first time that Olivia stepped on the paper and into the paint, I decided that there was no way I was going to convince her not to and it wasn't upsetting Alessia, so I let it go.

Alessia took her shoe off to trace around her foot.


Saturday, May 10, 2014

A New Quilt Project

Last weekend I went with friends to a quilt exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts. It was such an inspiring experience. I had been thinking about starting a new quilt project. I knew I wanted to work with non-quilting fabric, but when I pulled out the pile of robes, napkins, and scraps of clothing fabric I wasn't feeling inspired. At the exhibition I saw several quilts made of different kinds of fabric used together, wools and cottons, plainweave cottons and sateens. The different textures of the fabric gave life and movement to the quilts.

Once home I pulled out some old robes and my quilting fabric. This is where I am at so far:

I intentionally cut the plaids slightly off grain. I saw this in an antique quilt some years ago in Vermont. The quilt was made of simple rectangles, but the plaids and stripes were all cut off grain, which made the whole quilt move. It gave the quilt angles, where there weren't any.

We'll see where this goes. Right now I am very excited about the possibilities.


Saturday, May 3, 2014

Conversations with my children

Me: Olivia, you can't play with that.

Olivia (almost 2 yo): I Want It !!!!! (In screaming meltdown mode)

Me: Mamma said no.

Olivia: (very calmly) Alessia can you reach?


Alessia (3.5 yo): Mamma, mamma, Olivia is trying to touch a mess that someone made.

Me (internally - that could be nothing, or that could be something really bad): Show me, Alessia.