Friday, July 22, 2011

Choose to be happy.

I was reading an article today that explained how every feeling is a choice and we could choose to be happy or not. Hhmm, try telling that to someone in a dark state of depression, "hey, misery guts, stop choosing to feel that way..." I was skeptical that this article was written by one of those chipper, perfect people who wears home made vintage flowers in their hair at the gym (yes I have seen this) who's kids do no wrong and who has a brightly colorful sofa and white rugs but I read on.
It actually gave some practical advice on things you could do to help your moods and one of those things, was to identify that which makes you happy and do more of that.
I can do that.
I got thinking: eating chocolate, visiting England, glueing things, being pampered, shopping, girlie trips and high heels, some of the things I thought of, I couldn't share..
My list went on but most required, money, other people, me leaving home forever or some serious weight gain. Until...
I thought, a clean house makes me happy. I didn't say I love to clean and lately, since most of what I do, is undone and unnoticed, cleaning hasn't been high on my list of priorities. Still, I put on my high heels and set too.
What do you know, whilst mopping my wood floor, I heard the ping of another load of laundry and as I'm changing it over to dry, I find myself with happy thoughts of how blessed I am to have such an awesome washing machine!!!!!!! Shut the FRONT DOOR!!!!
I was feeling happy and I haven't even dented my list yet.
It's true, people.
What makes you happy?I insist you do it now, unless it involves Ryan Reynolds or Ryan Gosling (loved him since the notebook)or Matthew (no surname required or... DB( full name, undisclosed to protect my hubby;-)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Get Crafty

Nothing can take me away from the real world, as quick as a good glue session and no I haven't taken up sniffing it.

Boyd, Ronan and Curt are off at scout camp and Jordan is...well "out" as he puts it, most of the time. So Asha and I have to fill our long, lazy days, doing something.

Thankfully, I was invited to ANOTHER two baby showers, so I figured I'd make something but since there is rarely enough notice to get detailed, I settled for this. 4 cupcakes in a cake box.

The cup cakes are made from baby socks and burp clothes, wrapped in a coffee filter and ribbon. Then I added 15 "thank You" cards because we all know the onslaught of casseroles about to appear and they require a note of thanks.

Wowing people, is in the wrapping, not the price tag and I have learned a lot from other blogs and pinterest on this stuff.
So, I'm at the shower and one girl had her little cutie with her. She was turning one and it jogged my memory, I actually knitted her a little cardi. Yes I said knitted! the thing is, I never gave it to her because I was embarrassed. It was a bit wonky. I told her about it and became the brunt of a few good jokes.
Anyway, I got home dug out the cardi, then proceeded to make some boot socks for the now, one year old as redemption and figured, she can pass the cardi along as a joke, at the next shower.

Now I have Asha in line for the next pair of socks. They are pretty cute.

Missing My boys.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Home School

I thought it was about time for another room makeover. This time is not technically a room but a space I found and re purposed.

My sweet little Asha has really struggled in school and for all her hard work and efforts, was just not progressing. I was told many times to not stress and that she would get it, things would just click and I had to feel confident that the trained professionals knew more about my baby in this instant than I did.

Lesson- trust your mother gut!!

After neurological testing, she was diagnosed with severe dyslexia and performance anxiety, which I always thought was just shyness but apparently it is linked to their fear of failure. Imagine trying for hours a day, to memorize simple words, that ALL of your friends can read and spell and knowing you WILL get them wrong :( My heart hurts just thinking about it.
Anyway, after gathering tons of info from experts, I am full of hope, that with a special method of multi sensory training, an awesome tutor and gobs of effort on hers and my part, that Asha will be able to read and function in a classroom eventually. 10% of people suffer with some form of "learning disability" I hate that term but that is how it is described.
(Just for kicks, here's a list of successful people with dyslexia:
Einstein,Tom Cruise, Richard Branson(virgin Atlantic)Charles Schwab (bank)Winston Churchill, Jon F Kennedy,Tommy Hilfiger, Andy Warhol, Cher, Jackie Stewart (racecar driver)Kiera Knightly to name a few.)

So for now, Asha and I will be working together at a "home school" to fill in the gaps of the past 2 years and get her on track with learning. It was not my plan to be "that" Mum, with baby strapped to breast, walking around in tie dye, keeping my kids from the worldly clutches of society but after attending a home school conference I realized there are many just like me, that had to seek an alternative to the "one size fits most" way of learning. It is a blessing that I have the time and means to do this and that's why I am painting.
This "school" required a space without distraction, with room for books and curriculum. I found it in a dark loft area at the top of our stairs.

We started by adding a sunlight tube which is incredible. It adds daylight where a skylight wasn't an option. I painted a very light bright blue then added storage (gotta love IKEA, although I miss my girls trips to Cali)

Then I used a method that I learned about designing spaces to fill it with things that would inspire. For Asha that is artwork so markers and crayons, plus to finish off, the most comfy chair in the world for reading. Asha and I sat on every chair in every store and this was her pick. I was thrilled since it's so cool looking.

If your still reading this extremely long post, I would like to explain dyslexia in brief.

startbyt ryingtoreadt hispar agra pha ndtheni magineso meofthewor psbei ngh ighero rlower onthep agel ikethe yare3p thenb eari nginmindp,b,andd alllo okthes amewell thatishowsh ehas todecod eapara graph.Th enimagineh avin gtore writeit quicklywi thy ourw ro ngha ndan pthat ishowhe rbrai nfunct ions.

It is not simply reading backwards.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

What side are you on?

I realize there are two sides to all stories but in this case, I only know one.
English People in America, fought for independence, Won and I get to have several days of eating fried carbs without guilt and lots of fireworks and lets face it, who doesn't love fireworks. ( Hobbs that's who, poor puppy had to be in the basement in his crate with a blanket over him and a loud movie on)

So why my lack of British pride you wonder on such a holiday. Well I grew up in the great country of England with all its pleasantries and traditions. We are not huge on flag worship, unless it's some Royal Affair or of course the world cup but still, we have a loyal duty to the Queen and all things British. It is quite a multi cultural place and I had friends of all different backgrounds. I never could understand why one of my best friends, a Pakistani/Muslim, was allowed to wear trousers to school when the rest of us had to wear skirts or why my good buddy in junior school, raised Jehovahs Witness, was allowed to skip assembly, when I had to sit through it in total boredom.

Over the past decade or so I have watched the laws change to accommodate various religious preferences. One of the most ridiculous being that an already overworked nurse, had to turn the bed of a Muslim patient to face Mecca, wait for it, 5 times a day, for prayer!! Not a big deal in Utah but I would guess Pakistani/Muslim are the dominant immigrant in the UK.
I see this great nation trying to go the same way.

So why my racial rant? I am in no way racist at all (everyone says that I know but really I am not) I make my point to my fellow Brits now living in The beautiful free country of America.
It saddens me when I see one of my own refuse to stand to honor the flag or repeat the pledge of allegiance.
I chose to come here. I love it. My family and I benefit from our freedoms and liberties here.

I have said out loud to many an immigrant back home, if you don't like our ways, go back to your home. I feel the same here.

So there, you get to see a little of Natalie, Telling it how it is.
God Bless America, land that I love,
Home of the free and the Brave.

To all who serve for my freedom, including now, my brother in law, who left his wife and 5 young kids to serve in Afghanistan, I am grateful and I will continue to feel blessed in this land.