Well, I finally managed to get my swap posted to Sarah for the Valentines Swap. It seemed to take me so long to get it completed and then extra days to get to the post office than necessary - but finally it's headed off to her home.
I really enjoyed this swap, for so many reasons. This was my second swap, and I'm loving the friendship and community that has been developing for me lately, mainly through blog-land. While making my Valentines swap I was thinking of Sarah and her family - of how I have so enjoyed reading her blog over the last .... has it been a year, I'm not sure? Not just the reading of her blog - but the feeling like I was being welcomed in. And the inspiration of her projects, her days, her children, her words and photographs (and the photographs of her son, as well!).
I also really enjoyed this swap because it gave me a heap of ideas and motivation to make sure I send some Valentines to my loved ones - friends and family. I have projects started that I will be attempting to finish over the next few nights (though I have busy days ahead).
I also just jumped into some of my projects, and didn't over-think them. I feel that I may make this my year of just doing, and experimenting, and trying things. To not worry about the mistakes or the end result so much as the fun of the making. While I do want to try (when I have a few spare moments) to start some form of business from my sewing / craft, I want it to be something I enjoy doing for me - not for the end salable product. I think that so many things happen from just doing, and learning how to use basic plans, but being flexible about it.
For now, I'll only show snippets of what I sent - I do want it to be a surprise! But hopefully next week I will have more finished projects to show you.
Next weekend I am going to a fabric manipulation workshop. I am so looking forward to this - to learning heaps of new techniques, to hopefully learning how to put a zip in (once and for all!!), and having a whole day of sewing sewing sewing with fabric scraps. And, also, to spending the whole day with my sister (who is also doing the workshop). We both have young children, and while we visit each other often, we rarely have long moments of time for just being, or chatting, or creating together and for ourselves.
On other topics :: Today we went to look at a kindy for the possibilty of Ari (and me) moving into that next phase. We went along with Momo and Oliver - both the boys are very close in age, and I feel that Momo and I have similar wants for our child care aspirations. It was a lovely centre, with a great outside and inside play space - lots of nurturing wooden blocks, an amazing amount of books, cubby houses, chooks and guinea pigs, an excellent craft corner....... Our boys loved it - playing and looking and touching :: while we were within their sight. We had to stand and watch them, or sit beside them.
For quite a while I have been asking Ari if he wants to go to kindy (he was in daycare before Mishi was born, while I worked part-time, but he's not anymore). He keeps telling me that he wants to be with me and Mishi. And that he'll go to kindy and then school "when I'm bigger". If I ask him how much bigger, he points to some random height above his head. Today was no different, with the added comment (to his uncle) that we had just been looking at Oliver's kindy. I feel that that really said it all - his feeling about going at this point. While I know that there would be so much for him there, I am not going to push him into anything he doesn't feel happy about. At daycare, in the past, the carers have told me that he stops the separation crying after a few minutes - sure, I belive that - but I also know that he did cry when we left him, and maybe he only stopped because he knew there was nothing he could do about it.
So much guilt, so many steps and milestones and things to know and learn along this parenting road. Through it all, I can trust only my own base instinct and the words, feelings, (imploring) eyes of my children. They know their role of being Child so much better / stronger than I know mine of being Mother.