I try to be a fun aunt

Blanket

On February 14th my newest nephew was born (yes, on Valentines day). As a gift I crocheted a blanket for his crib which you can see a piece of above. I am so amazed by newborn babies, that such little creatures are fully realised humans with all the same organs and limbs as me. With the same biological processes and the same instincts (I also cry when I puke, it sucks).

So now my second brother is a father too, and our family grows larger. I try to be a fun aunt, one who can be trusted like an adult but who also gets that playtime is fun and that kids ask questions about the world because they want to learn how it works. My oldest nephew is like that, he ask about everything and he talks and talks and talks. It can be tiring, but I also love that he is that way.

Watching

When the carnival came around again I spend the day with my oldest brother and his family. We watched the carnivals parade in Prinsenbeek, which is a parade with children groups in it and now that the boys are in school they meet classmates who are in the parade or watching as well. And in the afternoon I took the boys to go see the Lego Movie. We had to rush because we were a bit late (my lovely sister-in-law drove us to the theatre and picked us up again afterwards, I think she spend the entire day driving us from and too places since she also brought me to the train station at the end of the day) but we managed to get there right when the previews started.

I love legos, and so do the boys. (My niece is still a little young for them, and she is a really cute girly-girl who loves nail polish and already picks out her own outfits. But I will get her some legos when she gets old enough. 🙂 ) So when I heard that the Lego Movie was really good it seemed like a fun thing to share with my nephews. It was awesome. I had bought them both popcorn and the oldest asked me if I “was her” when the girl lego (Wyldstyle) first appeared. He himself was Superman. He had spend most of the day telling me about the bits he had seen in the trailer beforehand. The youngest was just really quiet and impressed with everything he saw.

I like being a fun aunt. I like that they comment on the colour of my hair every time they see me, and that I get to explain that I’m going to get a tattoo in June and that it’s like a picture on your skin that grown ups can get. (My nephews headcanon is that tattoos keep hurting for children and that’s why they are for a adults. This is not something I told him, but how he explained away that I said you need to be 18 to go get one.) And while I might never become a parent myself, I love that I have kids in my life who can rely on me and to who I am important. I am an aunt, and I am good at being one.

The parade:

Boefjes

botsauto

More photos from the parade below the fold!
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Halloween! A post that is late

And just like that it’s been a month since I posted anything here. A Whole month in which I worked on a new issue of The Anglerfish, went to FACTS, celebrated my nieces 3rd birthday and joined my nephews on a Halloween walk that scared the crap out of them. A month in which I lost my internet connection and re-established it, started my own Redbubble shop and watched a bunch of tv-shows and films.

So, Halloween! It’s an American holiday that is becoming more and more a part of Dutch culture too. I like it, I used to be a scaredy cat when I was little but now I love scary things. (Possibly because I don’t find them to be super scary anymore but just fun.) So in the week before Halloween when I was at my brothers to celebrate my nieces third birthday (I got her dress up wings and my little ponies and she enjoyed being all sweet and cuddly with me) at night there was also a Halloween themed walk that I joined my nephews on (4 and 6 years old). It was at night, we all got lanterns and there were people dressed up as all sorts of creepy crawly things hidden in the woods and telling stories, it was awesome. My youngest nephew got a little too scared, so in some parts I carried him and kept him away from any hidden monsters I could spot. I thought the walk was very cool and a great way of incorporating the holiday into our own lives without trying to trick-or-treat in a place where very few people would actually have candy to give out. On the actual evening of Halloween I got home late from work and spend the night building this awesome Haunted House lego set that I had treated myself to while watching The Nightmare Before Christmas, a film which I love with all my heart.

And speaking of Halloween, it was naturally the theme of the October issue of The Anglerfish, for which I drew the cover. That’s right! I did a cover!

Halloween cover

This is the version without the logo, go look at the actual magazine to see it in context.

I’ll discuss some of the other stuff I did this month in other posts!

A story about a birthday gift

a doll and a dress

This was my favourite doll for a long time when I was a child. I’ve had her for as long as I can remember and her name was Mamma-pop (Mummy-doll). This has always seemed a very logical name to me, I must have named her when I was so young that all I could think of for a name was the chief female influence in my life, my mum. She used to go into the bath with me, I’ve washed her hair countless times. And every time after the bath one of my parents had to twist off her leg so that all the water that had gotten inside her could pour out. As a result her leg can’t take much more twisting off and her hair has gone a bit coarse. She is a very well loved doll and she wasn’t made to sit in an attic or closet. She was made to be played with.

So I’ve cleaned her up, made her a special new dress and matching headband, and gave her as a gift to my niece for her second birthday. Now I don’t know if she likes her and will play with her. She got a lot of presents and every new one pushed the previous one aside. I was also not the only one to give her a doll so who knows which one she’ll prefer? (But mine was the largest, and I think that counts.) I don’t know whether my niece will love the doll just as much as I did or what name she’ll choose if she want a new one, but I hope that one day she’ll know what giving her this doll meant for me. She’s my godchild and I want to give her the joy I had as a child.

a doll and a dress

I was very happy with my work on the dress, it was the first time I tried making such a garment and to make things harder on myself I just had to go and get a pattern that I had to adjust for size. I got the pattern (Fiona Baby Sundress) for free at Very Pink Knits. The youtube instructional videos have been such an amazing help in my journey of becoming a more proficient knitter, so if you like knitting check them out!

a doll and a dress

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