Tonight I bathed my babies with lavender soap. As I was rocking them to sleep, I started to doze off because of the relaxing scent and it reminded me of a home-made gift I made quite a while ago...

When I was in high school, my knack for making gifts began. I decided to make sleeping masks filled with lavender for all of my friends. I (or rather, my parents) bought elastic strips and flannel fabric, which was black with blue flames :) My mom helped me with the sewing and I filled them with dried lavender (I got it from a friend of Gracie's) and rice.

I've since tried the old home-made gift tactic many times. One year, it was the year before I married Mark, I made home-made truffles. I thought, "Hey, how hard could it be?" It was super difficult, considering I'd never really made any candies at all, ever. But they turned out to be edible and were not bad looking... I put them in little home-made boxes (my box making skills were and still are lacking).

I made the nastiest looking cake on earth for halloween one year. Following the cake, I took two rounds of cake decorating classes and Viola! I can now decently decorate cakes, cupcakes and cookies (I'm for hire if you'd like).

For the past couple of years I've made caramel dipped apples and I give them to everyone I can, both immediate and extended family... should this be my tradition? I haven't decided yet.

This year, I've been preparing my mind early on for what I might do...
Maybe this chocolate ornament filled with truffles :)

These easy chocolate cupcakes?

We will see...


Finally :)

Mark gave me a rose plant a year and a half ago.
It was in full bloom when I got it... then the roses all went away.

For a very long time the plant grew and grew but no roses ever came back...
But this is what I got to see this morning when I went outside to water my garden:


Happy Birthday Party

Ada, Age 2

This party turned out to be exciting, happy, busy, relaxed and perfect.
Ada enjoyed it.