Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Danger of Bedtime Stories (or Valentine's Day)

I realize I've been MIA for about ten days, but I have a really good reason.

You see, for Valentine's Day, I got this really breath-taking present.  If truth be told, it was actually the night before Valentine's Day.  An early present!

I wasn't expecting it at all!  It was a total and complete surprise to me.  In fact, I don't know when I've ever been more surprised in my life.

Not only was I surprised, but I was completely stunned!  My jaw dropped to the floor.  I didn't even know what to say-- in fact, I don't think I said anything at all for about five minutes.

And when I finally did speak, I couldn't tell you what I said or if I was even coherent.  I'm sure there was screaming.  And tears.  It was one whopper of a present!

Did you guess it yet?

I broke my nose!

I'd like to say that I was spelunking or sky diving or even bungee jumping-- imagine how exciting and perhaps risky that would sound.  Maybe even believable.  But the truth is boring.  Way more boring than that.  In fact, it sounds almost ridiculous when I say it aloud.  In fact, I'll say it, and then you can be witness to the ridiculousness.  Ready?

I broke my nose reading a bedtime story to my five-year-old.

See what I mean!?!  Actually, it was my five-year-old that broke my nose.  How about that?!  He was merely walking around on the bed and then he somehow fell on me.  I know!  It doesn't quite make sense when I say it to myself.  It wasn't like he suddenly dropped from the sky and I cushioned his certain-death fall with my nose... or maybe it was kind of like that.  It depends on what your notion of sky is.  But anyway, my nose took the full brunt of some part of his head.  My face exploded with pain, and then there was the telltale bruising, swelling, and whatnot that followed.  Pain followed pretty much.  Pain upon pain upon pain.

My nose hurt.  My head hurt.  My sinuses hurt.  Even my teeth hurt.  Actually, there was this constant shooting pain like someone had shoved an electric rod in my face and was trying to push my teeth out of my head.  I wasn't sure if I was going to lose my teeth altogether or just end up looking like the one of the 'Hags of the Long Teeth' in Padraic Colum's The King of Ireland's Son.  It wasn't until two days ago that something mysteriously and quite audibly popped back into place, and the intense shooting pain subsided and left me with just a tender, throbbing nose.

It's funny when you wake up and find yourself to be thankful for a throbbing nose.  Talk about perspective.  With five-year-olds randomly falling from the sky, it could have been much, much worse.  Motherhood is dangerous, after all.  It's a real contact sport.  Don't let them tell you otherwise.

And reading bedtime stories?  Totally. Dangerous.

I'm going to start wearing a helmet.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

More handmade toys

As promised, here are the last bits of my handmade Christmas, including Miss Jemima Mouse!

Kitty Bill loved Jeremy Mouse so much that before the day was out he was begging me to make a Jemima Mouse companion.  Luckily, these mice are quite simple to put together.  He insisted she have wedding clothes, as well, and then he created a fort church and conducted a wedding ceremony.  Now of course he's asking for a Tiptoes... You knew that was coming, right?  When things settle down a bit I'll have to oblige him.

Jemima is made from the same Holiday Mice pattern.  Her wedding attire begins with the hat that comes with the mouse pattern.  Then I attached yarn at the back of the hat and knit down to create a cape/veil effect.  If you missed the details on Jeremy, you can find them here.

Here's the wedding photo:

If you haven't seen Reg Down's website for the Tiptoes book series, you must take a look!  There are so many wonderful pictures there.  And the books are pure magic.  All three of my children adore his stories immensely.

What else?

Here's the outcome of that knit horse from Jan Messent's book, Knit a Fantasy Story.  It was a small torture to make it come together, but in the end, the beautiful smile on Sunburst's face was completely worth it.  She adores this horse.  She has since named it Bucephalus-- can you tell she enjoyed studying Ancient Greece?-- and she's been busy designing and knitting a realistic horse blanket for it.  Apparently the pattern in the book is just too different than the horse blankets she has seen around here.

The little doll on top just seemed like it needed to be there.  She's from the Sally Mavor book, Felt Wee Folk.  I just love her little dolls.

For Moonshine, I crafted two dolls: Little Red Riding Hood and the Pink Baby.  Sounds like it could be a curious story all on its own, doesn't it?  Little Red is technically a table puppet with a felt base, but the other dolls welcomed her into the dollhouse anyway.

Moonshine had been ogling the Little Red from the table-theater page in Sunnhild Reincken's book Making Dolls.  This one is not exact, but it's close enough.  The Pink Baby (perhaps it has a name by now) is copied from one the neighbors gave Sunburst last year.  Sunburst traced a pattern, and she kindly helped me sew things up.  There is also a tiny knit blanket, but it obscured the baby too much for the picture.

She loves them!  She really, really does!

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Back from holiday

Apologies for my very long absence.  We have been on holiday for the entire month of January, and have now just emerged from the heavy fog of jet lag.

It was a wonderful trip-- very necessary, well-filling stuff.  We spent a lot of time hugging family and friends, laughing, talking, and staying up way too late.  It was only our second visit back to the U.S. after moving to Europe, and while the views here are gorgeous, I really miss being home and feeling like I'm home.  I don't know that it's something that you ever get over, but... we're supposed to be here now.  And so we are.  Here.  In Switzerland.

I came home to find some very sweet blog comments waiting for me, one of them by (and I could hardly believe it myself!) the author of the Tiptoes Lightly book series, Reg Down.  That pretty much made my day!  The kids were so pleased that they had to bring Jeremy Mouse (and now we have his wife Jemima, too!) to the computer to show him.  What fun!!

I'll be back tomorrow with pictures-- some from our trip and some that I promised you from those Christmas presents I was making for the kids.  And of course I have to show off our knit Jemima Mouse, as well.  She needs her moment in the limelight too!  ;)
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