Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Been Stitch'in

I'm thankful for all the responses I've gotten on these little winged creatures... I love them so and it's so wonderful to know that other people like them, too!
I've done a few custom orders in the past few days.  It's been fun chatting with the "soon to be owner" and figuring out exactly what they are envisioning and making it!

I do find it nerve racking at times... I love it..... will they???
 But this is good for me... to put 'myself' out there and not be AFRAID!
I keep telling myself - if they don't like it - you can ALWAYS try again!
Such good lessons to learn, think about, and pray over as I stitch away...

Yesterday... Ethan joined me and made some birds of his own... I'll post them after I get them downloaded... they are cute! 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

On Etsy...

The last few days have been a whirlwind!  But I'm excited that my art is FOR SALE on Etsy!  This is so huge for me!  I've always wanted to open up an Etsy store, but my days seem so filled with kid play, dirty dishes, and laundry chaos....
Find "Pretty in Green" on Etsy ... (here)
 When I finally had enough courage to post my birds, my friend asked me to join her on Etsy in her That's Happy Shop.  I just love it!  
Find "Hues of Blue" on Etsy ... (here)
Please hop on over there and check out this cute little shop... it's fun and Oh soooo HAPPY!
(CLICK HERE to find out how I can make you your very own personalized set of birds!)


Saturday, April 26, 2014

The Birds and the Bees

*****Disclaimer:  I looooove to write, BUT I DEFINITELY need a full time editor... so if you are particular about grammar - this blog may drive you crazy... I use (....s) too much, 's... when I'm not suppose to...  I mix up words - occasionally putting an "are" instead of "our" (don't normally mess up their, there, and they're, but there's always a first)... I make awkward sentences... And I most likely will always have two spaces after a (.)... because that was the rule when I learned how to type (deal with it!!!!) but USUALLY I find my errors in a day or two of posting a post... so if you hate something or notice something wrong, I may or may not have notice it and may or may not have fixed it...


Last night as I was up late stitching little birds and waiting for my hubby to get home from work, I watched a show on Hulu.  A commercial came on where a little girl asked her mom where babies come from.  It was "suppose" to be funny... the mom responds with a dialogue about that particular add and the daughter was left confused... hahahahahahaaaa SO FUNNY! {SARCASM} I hate commercials like that.  I hate that parents are so awkward and afraid to engage their children in MEANINGFUL and HONEST conversation about one of the most important topics in life. In my opinion this women missed a HUGE opportunity. (yes, I get it was supppppose to be funny...)  This hit especially close to home because (without going into any details and keeping this as VAGUE as possible - and please don't blow this up to "oh my gosh" something happened)... there was an "incident" at Ethan's school yesterday - and Ethan immediately told his teacher, the school handled it.  
As I tucked Ethan into bed last night, I gushed with pride as I told him how proud I was of him for how he handled the "tiny and minor and probably very innocent" situation.  

1 in every 4 girls are sexually abused... 1 in every 5 boys are sexually abused.  This should be alarming, and every day I pray to the LORD ALMIGHTY.. that my son and daughters aren't that "1" in 4 or 5... I also do something about it -- I engage them in conversation (often... I'll explain)!

  I've worked with young women for almost a dozen years and my heart has been broken by all the abused, brokenness, confusion, hurt, pain... I've seen. In all these years of chatting with women, I really couldn't tell you I've found one girl that had a healthy or clear view of sex or their sexuality.  The world treats sex like it's an everyday common, animalistic lust-fest... and if you AREN'T out hunting for your next orgasm with who knows who - who knows where - you are WEIRD, strange, "religious", uptight (blah, blah, blah)... SERIOUSLY???? Virgins are laughed at... multiple partners are encouraged, adultery justified, pornography encouraged. After all, you have NEEDS and you need to know that you are "sexually compatible", right?  For instance, I was checking out at Walmart the other night and the cashier mentioned that the guy before me was super cute and she should have gotten his number. She proceeded to tell me her whole life dating history (don't worry, it's common for cashiers to tell me their whole life story... you would NOT BELIEVE what I've heard over the years)... Over the course of the conversation and through various questions - she admitted she NEVER got into a relationship expecting it to last... "it's just about having fun".  At some point in the conversation I told her I'd been married for almost 14 years and she exclaimed, "WOW, did you get married thinking it would last?" and "I don't think I could only be with one guy!".... 


The church also treats sex like a dirty secret... "well.... we can't really talk about it, 
but just DON'T DO IT!"

Why does the "birds and the bees" conversation terrify parents?  (Why is it called that anyways?? and WHY would you assume one little talk would be enough to answer all their questions?) Why is it uncomfortable and awkward? Because "once upon a time" a little girl innocently asked her mother, "Where do babies come from?"  The question never got answered, but what did get answered LOUD AND CLEAR... is  - it is NOT SAFE to talk about that with my mom.  If TV and hollywood get to take a beautiful, sacred act between a man and a woman and reduce it to animalistic instincts and everyday occurrences like going to the bathroom... then I want to stand up and say something!  I want to teach my kids something different.  I don't want them to learn the hard way by having their heart broken into a million pieces or to spend their life painfully dealing with STD's and any other crappy disease they could catch by having multiple partners. 

So... how do we talk about this subject with our kids?  How do we make it not awkward? This might be unfair, because my hubby tells me I should have been a sex-ed teacher because I think IT'S EASY!!!  When they ask questions... engage them.  Answer their questions, calmly and scientifically.  Kids can smell fear... don't be afraid.  The first sex talk I had with my son was when he was two years old.  It was bath time... the first time he was sharing the tub with his sister.  He FREAKED out because he thought his sister had "lost" her pee-pee!  It was really funny. But BAM... first anatomy lesson!  Boys and girls have different parts with specific names - simple. Since that time we've had sooooooooooooooo many talks.  This past year some of our most intense talks happened - due to my pregnancy.  How did the baby get in your womb? How does the baby come out? It's fascinating watching their little brains work... how they are curious... and it can be REALLY FUNNY!  This is where you can truly find the good comic relief!  Like for instance a few years back Ethan asked a really good question - something to do with where babies come from. I jumped all over that and articulately and simply answered his questions.  He just stared at me with a blank face, was quiet for about 10 seconds after I was done and then animatedly asked, "Wanna play candy land?" 

Okay really, how do you talk with your kiddos.  Here is how I've done it. From the beginning we've talked a lot about "private" parts of the body.  We told them that no one is to EVER try to touch them in their private parts nor are they to touch other people's private parts.  They are special and unique and that is why we take special care to cover and protect them with cool underwear. My kids get this... for example, at Ethan's four year well-check exam the Doctor asked to see his private parts and Ethan was indignant! "NO! You can't! It is not okay!" I had to explain to him that was okay in this specific situation. Afterwards I told him I was proud of him for his response!

 Secondly, my son is super scientific... simple answers don't really work for him.  He wants details, facts, specifics... So I got him an anatomy book. We've talked about the human body and it's different organs and parts.  We've talked about the differences between boys and girls.  We've talk about how boys have sperm and girls have eggs.  I've found cool videos online where it actually shows the process from the sperm fertilizing an egg all the way until the baby is born.  Ethan is fascinating by the process... the miracle. I've never had to go into detail about the actual act of sex (the why's beyond an expression of love between a Daddy and Mommy)... it's never really come up -- I'm sure he'll be more curious one day and I pray the day he is - he won't ask his friends, he won't search the internet... I pray he'll ask me.  I pray I can teach him the beauty of a sacred act that God created... 

I could say more, this subject is important to me. I pray for the children today and what they are taught/not taught.  I pray for their little minds as they are exposed to terrible things or misrepresented acts (aka ANY sexual act hollywood produces). I pray that we as parents will STAND up... and be the PARENT in our children's lives to teach, train, and guide them in the truth when fear, lies, and distorted realities have become the norm in society.

Friday, April 25, 2014

A New Step for Me...

It's taken me a long time to admit that I'm an artist.  I like to say I'm creative or I am sorta artsy, but to say I'm an artist was just something I never could admit.  My brother is an artist, I have friends who are artists ... I always felt like I wasn't quite on their level.  Over the years I've "done art" for so many of my friends -- made many wedding cakes, countless wedding favors (one time making 250 beaded dragonflies), hemmed pants, sewn button holes, created table runners, countless baby gifts... quilts.  Painted pictures.... taken pictures of my friend's kiddos... etc..... BUT I've never charged a penny. 
Soooo this is unchartered ground for me... I'm actually going to try to sell some of my art.
 This past winter I had a pregnant friend who gave birth to a little boy who had a serious heart condition.  He's been in the hospital for months... my heart has ached for her, her husband and this little guy as they began the parenthood journey in the hospital... wondering if their precious little baby would make it...
I prayed a lot for them and the verse that kept coming back into my mind was this...

 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life.... Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?" 
(from Matthew 6)

I began to stitch little birds... as I prayed for him... soon I had dozens of little birds...
 I strung them up on beaded chains and absolutely feel in love...
I made one for this little boy...
and I made one for Tansy...
then a couple for friends who loved them too...
 I got some requests for specific colors and patterns... 
 It's hard for me to put a price on my art... my creations that have spent so much time in my hands... to me they are priceless... I worked at each little one until I could say...
"It is good"...
 We are such copy-cats of the Great Creator... we mimic His designs - 
there is truly nothing new under the sun.. 






So I have 17 strands of birdies... I'm actually going to sell them... I don't have much of a plan of how to go about that... and have been humming and stalling as long as I can - racking my mind as how to go about this... I'm an artist - I'm lost when it comes to business -- 
{I'm not saying this} but if pushed - I'd give them all away for free, BUT my son's tuition is getting more expensive and my husband's in ministry (enough said)... I'd love to be able to provide a little bit more income for my family -- so I'm taking this step...

A strand of 5 birds: $25 (includes shipping)
A strand of 7 birds: $30 (includes shipping)

If you are interested in purchasing please email me at teamforsythe@hotmail.com - include BIRDS in the subject line... and I'll chat with you about what you are interested in... 

Custom orders are my favorite!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

True Confessions of This Momma...

Do you ever feel like being a Momma is MORE than you ever imagined or dreamed?  I've been sick this week and I've been feeling panicky... how can I care for my kiddos while I'm so sick... while I can barely move or think straight... There are no sick days for Moms.  

I been thinking about the all the external things that pressure a Mom... vaccinations, clothe vs disposable, organic vs GMO's... private school vs homeschool... the list could go on and on.  I find myself so frustrated by all the opinions, by passionate people who feel their way is the ONLY right way and tell you so ... I find myself feeling guilty -- like I'm not a good mom...

I am a good mom... I vaccinate, I use disposable diapers and clothe diapers (when I feel like doing all the laundry... and having my house seem like anomia)... I feed my kids GMO's, msg's, and high fructose corn syrup (usually out of ignorance or not having hours to stand around in the grocery store reading labels while my two older kids destroy the store and my baby screams), I don't usually buy organic (because my 300 dollar a month food budget - for a family of 5 can't really justify buying a 8 dollar gallon of milk), I failed at breastfeeding with all three of my kiddos and spent more time pumping than actually breast feeding - they drank more formula than breast milk (not that I didn't try harder at breast feeding than anything else in the WORLD), I also failed at homeschooling... I found myself yelling, being angry, threatening... crying -- staying up late trying to figure out ways to make it work... I feel so happy and at peace with my kiddos in school!  My kids eat at Burger King and McDonalds (like 3 times a year). Sometimes I like grabbing a jar of mayo in the store instead of making my own, because sitting on the couch for that extra 15 minutes is more than I've gotten in DAYS!!!  My kids wear all hand-me-downs... I can't afford new clothes.  I don't buy them toys... the toys they have are from grandparents and free from free cycle or off of craigslist.  We don't take our kids many places that have entrances fees... we try to do everything we can for free.  I could go on... we make sacrifices... we try... we DO THE BEST WE CAN! 

And if there is one thing I'm learning... is if I'm gonna be passionate, I want to be passionate about knowing my Savior, I want to be passionate about teaching my kiddos how to love and know Him, too...  This world is cursed.  We shouldn't be surprised that our medical system is screwed up and vaccinations are just a way for someone else to get rich, or shocked that our foods are filled with junk so that some CEO can make a killing in profits... We should BE SURPRISED at how focusing on all these "external" things can take our eyes off of the Savior and cause us to live in fear that maybe our household cleaners are full of toxic stuff and that bad things MAY happen to us.  

God says over and over in His word... "Do not fear"... "Do not be afraid"... "trust in ME!"  I want to live counter culture... to not be afraid - to not feel judged and guilty, but to confidently know that God loves me and He loves my kiddos WAY MORE than I do... and He's entrusted their little lives in my care... so I'm gonna be passionate... I am gonna talk about what matters... and it is Him!

Easter 2014

Saturday morning we made our traditional Resurrection rolls... the kiddos love making these.  I love the symbolic meaning of wrapping "Jesus'" body in the grave... and after three days the grave is empty... sure it may only be melted marshmallow, but it is so cool and I just LOVE the expressions on my kiddos face when they see the empty tomb!  I get chills thinking about how much God loves us - that He would do what He did... sacrifice His only Son for us... It is a beautiful thing!
Micah and I try so hard to be intentional about "celebrating" holidays... After all God LOVES a good party... He commanded His children to set aside weeks for celebrations... This year we went through Ann Voskamp's "An Easter Devotional - Trail to a Tree" ... she offers it free on her blog (here).  It's a 17 day devotional with printable classical painting pictures that I printed off and laminated and we made a trail and the pictures led to the cross (I didn't take a picture... but trust me it was cool!) 
We try to keep the day - about the truth meaning of the holiday, but we still love having fun... so we did venture out for an Easter egg hunt... I love the questions my kids ask...
What does a bunny have to do with Easter?  Why do we look for eggs...?  Good chats... good discussions... I love it!
It was Tansy's first egg hunt... she loved putting every egg in her mouth... and sat wide eyed as all the children trampled each other to pick up eggs... she is so adorable..
 On Sunday we dressed up for Church... The girls in their fancy dresses...
 And Ethan oh so handsome...




 After church we came home to pop the turkey in the oven and to make our traditional hot cross buns... Ethan wanted to share them with his class so we made a tray for him to take on Monday...
Dried tansy... it's quickly becoming one of my favorite flowers!
As the buns where rising we went for a little stroll out in the sunshine....




It was pleasant... and warm... I can feel my body thawing out!
Our finished Hot Cross Buns...
Dinner was yummy... even Tansy thought so!
The evening came to a close with this gorgeous sunset... 
I'll leave you with the verse I always think of on Easter...

1 Corinthians 15:17
And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.

Praise God for RESURRECTION SUNDAY!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Pre-Easter Celebration...

We've been waiting for SPRING for a long time... it's been a cold, snowy, and LONG winter... which is good - we always need the moisture and I always say if it's cold, there NEEDS to be snow! This weekend we had SPRING!!
I was so excited that Ethan and Micah both had Good Friday off... I was ready to have some adventures, but Ethan began the day off sick... really sick!  It was okay because the whole day was rainy and cold... we stayed home and just watched movies.  I felt so LAZY... we NEVER do this.  I normally have a to-do list with 10 or 12 things and I'm constantly working.  It was good to just rest.
Saturday was a different story... it was GORGEOUS!  Perfect day for a stroll.  (I'd like to say we hike, but between all the exploring I rarely break a sweat!)
I love seeing buds on the trees, rabbits frolicking, birds chirping...
I'm excited for warmer weather... 


We ended with muddy, dirty... tired kiddos... and I actually felt sunburned.  We are all white and in desperate need of sunshine! I feel so alive when I'm outside... I know I say that a million times, but I just walk and worship... my heart fills with life, joy and thankfulness for a Creator who loves us so much to give us such beautiful things to feast our eyes upon.  I can think clearly... I feel peaceful. I'm glad we could get out on Easter weekend and have time to think about the significance of Resurrection Day... the reason why we who believe have hope!



Tuesday, April 15, 2014

I'm a Guest Blogger!

Today I'm a guest blogger on HandMakins!  I've always wanted to be a "guest blogger"... it just sounds soooooo cool and makes me feel really important. My childhood friend and high school mentor have created a blog about making things from scratch.  It is a fun blog with all sort of wonderful recipes and instructions for making things from soap to chap stick to felted laundry balls (one I really wanna make!!) to making yogurt.  
Today I shared about making pizza.  Pizza is one of my favorite things and over the years I've developed the perfect dough recipe.... you can check out my post (here).

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, April 14, 2014

To Walk, Color, and Nap...

The girls and I visited a friend this morning... after-the-visit, we had an hour before we had to get Ethan from school so Eden, Tansy, and I went to the walking park this afternoon... 
All three of us chose different activities... 
 I walked and pushed the stroller...
 Eden colored and Tansy slept!
Eden got out of the stroller once... to put her feet in the water...
I feel so alive outside.  I think clearly... I look, watch, and enjoy!
Today I marveled at what an amazing artist God is.  Each tree in that walking circle is different -- I know I walked that circle three times today... marveling and enjoying each tree. I now know where modern art comes from - trees have wild, crazy bed head!
 All the trees and bushes are starting to come alive with buds... What a master gardener God is...
 Eden colored the whole time... occasionally asking for a different color marker...
 Tansy slept...
and I enjoyed...