don't make fun of us california.

We had an earthquake today. 
An EARTHQUAKE.  In Virginia.  The epicenter was 33miles from our house.  It was a 5.9.

I'm just now recovering from the adrenaline rush of it happening...realizing what was happening and then frantically running to get my kids who were napping in their rooms on the second story.  Only twice in my life have I had so much adrenaline running through me...and both times ending in a baby being born. :)  

Never had it ever occurred to me that it would happen here.  In Virginia we are used to things we can see coming...like hurricanes and snow storms.  Earthquakes are another thing all together and I would be happy to never see another.  Thankfully we are all OK with no damage to anyone or anything.  God's hand is good.

I started this morning with an early morning call from my dermatologist.  Another emotionally crazy moment in my day...I had a mole removed last week...and the results from the test came back abnormal...pre-cancerous abnormal.  In the small moment of the phone call my emotions went from panic to gratefulness in God's hand in my life.  Thankfully it had all been removed so I should have nothing further to worry about...but was told that that it was very good that I had it removed when I did.

God is so good.

And to think...just yesterday I was wondering if my situation was forgotten to Him...if I was forgotten by Him.  I begged Him to show me that He remembered me.

I got it God.  You never forget.

Just no Earthquakes next time.  OK? 
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easy kiddy art lesson

I took art in some form or another my entire school career.  Starting in 6th grade all the way through college...if I think about it, it's kind of interesting that I didn't end up with some sort of Art degree or another.  I sold my first painting at 19 to my college art professor and it's taken me from then to about the last month or so to realize that I AM an artist making a living from my art.  I AM an artist.  It's a scary thing to say out loud because in my head it opens you up to people saying "ummmm, no you're not". 
Anyway...I have this deep need and desire to pass all these artsy skills down to my kids...I have to find a balance between artist and mom...the artist in me wants to teach technique while the mom in me wants them to have fun and we are learning to do both.
 After our last date with watercolors and me repeatedly saying "Fill the whole page"...because that is what every art teacher says...I thought this little lesson would show them WHY that is a good thing. :) Plus, I buy them real watercolor paper to use and I don't like seeing it go to waste.
 I started by taping off our first initial onto a piece of paper. 
 Then told Moses that he had to cover all the white on the page and showed him how.
 Something seemed to click for him and he spent 30 minutes happily filling in every corner.
 I taught him about blending colors and how to make them darker or lighter.
 He worked happily.
 And this one tried. :)
 But just look at the chubby hand holding the brush!  That's worth something right there. :)
 When he was done I pulled off the tape to show him what he had created. He was actually shocked and surprised.
It was a good lesson.  And everyone was happy.  And no paper was wasted. :)
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new headbands! :)

I'm doing things a little differently to see if it makes my life less or more crazy. :)   
Instead of having them up for grabs style you can order headbands of your choosing...

These are all the options for headbands at this time. :) 
There are still a very limited quantity of each style and once they are gone, they are gone! 

To place an order please email me (ricracandpompoms@gmail.com) with your choices both the name of the fabric and letter choice (for example--julia-a, sari-b, etc). If your choice is sold out, I will let you know.  Please also in your email include your paypal email so that i can send you an invoice. :) These are considered a custom order so there will be a bit of a wait until your order is created. :) 

They are $5 each (plus shipping) 
and will be paired up with coordinating elastic of my choosing. :) 

Thank you and happy Monday!!
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32

i turned 32 today. 
and it feels just right. 
i'm in a good, JOYful place.
i am blessed with three wonderful men in my life (one big and two little.
they've spoiled me rotten this week.  (we do birthday WEEKS in this house). :)
we got a dozen cupcakes from my new favorite bakery in charlottesville.
we ate one that day and then i put them in the freezer to eat at our leisure. 
i LOVE frozen cake.  is that weird?
we got my all time favorite meal from another local place. 
i could eat this every day of my life (which would probably be a much shorter life but hey, i didn't say it was my favorite healthy meal!)
doug took the boys to the dollar store and let them pick out gifts for me.
do they think i like chocolate or what?  the yellow bottle is pineapple scented bubbles. :)
just one of the varieties of yummy cupcakes i've been enjoying. 
they've all been so pretty. 
glitter on a cupcake?  who knew.
these two are my biggest blessings. 
these tiring, crazy little people are my absolute favorites.
moses pushed really hard today to go buy balloons and noisemakers.
he was vary confused about why we didn't have a party. :)
and this guy? 
i am blessed that he is good to me year round.  
he's never been one to save it all up for birthdays or special occassions. 
he let's me know he loves me every day in lots of ways.
he's the best husband ever.
i'm blessed in every way.

and moses took this photo for us. :)

and just a peek at some custom orders i've just finished up...
allow me to beg you a little?
if you are thinking that you might want to order a custom item from me for Christmas (yes I know it's early) please, please, please consider doing it now.  my time is limited and i really hate to say no and disappoint you but if you put in your order now i can say YES for sure! :)

i like to make you happy!
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modeling photo bomb.

 This post was supposed to be about the cool Norway jackets I made for the boys.
 Instead, it's turned into a post about Moses' random need to pose in every photo he is in.
 None of these poses are requested. 
 Just what pops into his little head when I want to his photo.
 I'm not sure where he gets it. 
 Because we have neither posed like this for photos nor asked him to do so.
 Some are more normal looking...
 ...others are more interesting...
 ...Aaron seems to have only one option.
 Regardless...it makes for an interesting photo shoot.
And this?  I have no words for this.

At least their jackets are cute, right?
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start now.

meg from whatever reminded me about something i have been meaning to do forever.
and that is to start on my operation Christmas child boxes EARLY.
this year my boys are really old enough to understand (or start to understand) how very fortunate they are and to begin to help them learn how to focus on others at Christmastime and all year round.
this year I plan on helping them each put a box together.
talking about misfortune and poverty with them.
and explaining to them how this box of gifts may go to a little boy just like them who has never gotten another gift.
i plan on letting them choose an item each time we go to target...or every other time at least, so that come November all the shopping is done.  no stress.
and we would have been talking about and praying for the recipients for months.
my goal is for it to be more than a box of stuff...but a blessing to another and the beginning of shaping my little boys hearts to be sensitive to the needs of others.
we started our boxes with markers and crayons from target.  at insanely cheap prices.
.99 for markers and .40 for crayons.  i am putting them in an area of the house where i will see them all the time so i won't forget.  won't you start with us?
and speaking of my little characters.
here they are.
donning new disguises for their annual production of a birthday song for their beloved bop bop.
moses wore his for our entire shopping trip.
they were worth buying for all the grandmas he made smile.
video
for your viewing pleasure, here's the video we sent him.
at the end moses exclaims "yoooouuuur 84!!!" which he is not.  but it's funny.

happy birthday bop bop!
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