a mistake, a birthday, and a diy pinwheel

Wednesday was rough. Rough, rough, ROUGH. I don't know how else to say it.

By the time Ben and I finally got the kids in bed (and to stay in bed), we were completely exhausted to our core.

This weariness and exhaustion was so consuming, that we thought for some reason the next day was Laith's birthday.

Ummmm...it's not.


Trying to figure out where the week went, I scurried around cleaning up the kitchen and setting the table for Laith's Breakfast Party. Grabbing 4th of July banners from the basement, picnic inspired red and white plaid napkins from a bin, and sneaking into the little boy's room for an armload of baseballs.

As I set the pinwheels in the middle of the table, I turned to Ben. "What day is tomorrow?" I asked. "Laith's birthday," he responded. "Yes...but the date?" "Well, today is the 16th...so tomorrow would be the 17th. Annnnnd not Laithy's birthday."

We just started at each other awkwardly for a minute before starting to laugh.

And such was our day. Sigh.


When the kids go to bed the night before their birthday, we say goodnight to their five year old selves (or however old they may be). I kiss the birthday-kid on the forehead and whisper "I'll see your older self in the morning! Goodbye five year old. In the morning, I'll say 'hellllllo six year old!'"

But this morning he's still five. And will be for a few more days.



In the meantime, we're filling those popcorn boxes with thick slices of watermelon and still having a Breakfast Party.

And we're giggling about how even mommy and daddy mess up sometimes.

These pinwheels were made for Laith's second birthday. The theme was 'Vintage Toys' and it was spectacular. I became addicted to making pinwheels because they're so fun and easy. I think I may have made 5o, or so.

Several houses later and an entirely different state, and some are still around. They usually sit on the marble table in our entry but as I moved them, I was reminded of all the fun we've had in the years between his second birthday and now his sixth.


I had posted a tutorial on these pinwheels ages ago...I mean, seriously ages ago...when I had just begun blogging for more than just my mom and mother-in-law to read. The photos are small and not well taken. I'm still working on my photography.

Like Laith and all we've learned in his six years, it's fun to look back and see how much I've learned about this blogging thing and continue to learn.

Laith, my sweet boy...may your day today (your pretend birthday) and your day on Saturday (your real day), be filled with joy and love and fun. I pray you know how much we treasure you and my cup runneth over seeing how much you love us and love the Lord. You're amazing, buddy. Can't believe I get to be your mom.


/////  Lisa Leonard has a great pinwheel tutorial on her blog, if you'd like to make your own! /////

take joy-signature-new-pink
take joy-signature-new-pink

African...& American Pinwheels {tutorial}

Every now and then we get glimpses into Ezekiel's life in Ethiopia

Some are scary: like when our old pipes were knocking & he thought it was machine gun fire

Some are sad: talking about his dad who passed away

And some are all-out ridiculous: climbing mango trees and going to the bathroom...really?

{I don't care what country they're from...boys are weird}

A few days ago it was quite windy so he decided to show Anton how to make

"African Pinwheels" - as he calls them

After they went to bed for the night, I sneakily grabbed one of the pinwheels and deconstructed it

What a simple concept. Roll up the paper halfway, tear through the unrolled portion & make holes.

Ezekiel had never seen a hole punch before today so they must have just poked sticks through

One ripped section goes one way, one goes the other

Add some sticks...

And voila! An African Pinwheel

Simply hold onto the center stick & run!

They had a blast racing back and forth

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On another note...

A few years ago I had gotten a bit addicted to making pinwheels, myself.

We had done a "vintage toy" birthday party for Laith when he turned 2.

And I literally made about 50 of them

They were everywhere...

I couldn't resist putting a few of these pics in.

Strangely, I couldn't find any of Laith with Ben!

Sorry Benny.

{so what do you do with 50+ pinwheels after the party is over? We still have some around}

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Have you ever made pinwheels before?

They're actually ridiculously easy {and like I said before, addictive}

I used scrapbook paper rather than origami paper as my instructions recommended.

Just remember that your paper needs to be double-sided.

I got the above pictures from this blog since I don't have any step-by-step photos of my making them.

"american" pinwheels

.  what you will need .

. double sided paper

. push pins

. wooden dowels

. scissors or paper cutter

. ruler

. directions . 

{step 1} cut paper to desired size, but make sure it's square

{step 2} fold in half diagonally

{step 3} then fold diagonally again

{step 4}unfold

{step 5} cut just over half way up each fold

{step 6} soak your wooden dowel or skewer (got mine at Hobby Lobby but found this place online) in a glass of warm water for awhile so it's easier to poke your pin through.

{step 7} gather every other corner together and place a pin through all four

{step 8} the above photo shows a brad being used, but this will not allow the pinwheel to spin. Instead, I used a cute push pins {map pins also work}, such as thesethese, or these.

{step 9} attach skewer or dowel to pinwheel

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Whether it's African or American pinwheels you seek, have fun getting addicted!

Take Joy,