making a list...

I am making a different kind of list this holiday season...
You can click it to make it bigger.
Trying to put the focus in the right place from the beginning.
Are you making a list?
I'd love to see it.

xo
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recycled pumpkins. :)

First a little confession.
I never got out my Fall decorations.
Not even one.
The only things that let us know that Fall was here in this house...were these pumpkins.
They sat centered on my dining room table.
That was it.
I'm ok with that.
And today...to add to the insult...I made them into this.
I wanted to show you before you threw out your pumpkins.
Even if you don't have white ones...I bet you could hit some orange ones with spray paint?
It took less than ten minutes.
And I did it with this guy right here the whole time.
I used wooded skewers to hold them onto each other.
And decided that two was enough...three was too unstable.
Added a scarf and a pail hat...some button eyes
(glued on and held in place with a toothpick), some greenery and done.
I am thinking the cold weather will preserve her for a while...at least longer than if I just ended her with being a pumpkin right?

Just a heads up...sometime soon I will teach you how to make your very own wreath from fresh greenery...so keep your eyes open for some you can grab...holly, boxwood, pine and magnolia will all work just fine and you will have to buy very few supplies.
And thanks so much for ALL of the encouragement about my people. :)
These people here are part of a Christmas gift for my niece.

Others are now happily in the shop...but I will have to limit the number of orders I can take and promise for Christmas...so order sooner than later...that goes for every custom order in the shop...I will most likely stop taking custom orders early in December.

Happy Monday!
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any guesses...

What this is?
I can't tell if they are as good as I think they are...
I'm kind of partial.
I am tempted to offer them in the shop.
But also thinking that they are one of those
"only a mother could love it"
kind of things.

So what's your guess?

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lyndsi and co.

Ok...so I am kind of giddy at the moment.
First...I am LOVING all the new commenters!! You are making my heart so happy and I am going to do my best to get around to each and every blog to say hi!
Keep it coming...I LOVE hearing from you!
Secondly...I did a photo shoot last night with my dear friend Lyndsi.
You might remember that I did her photos last year when her sweet baby girl was born.
This year was even more fun...but a bit more challenging.
Chase is three. That is all you need to know right?
He kept me on my toes.
But even still I think we got some really precious shots.
I have a million things I should be doing...
but I couldn't help myself from sitting down to edit.
I keep getting more excited with every edit.
I LOVE them.
They wanted some shots of just the two of them...easy. as. pie. after chasing Chase and Ella.
Plus they are beautiful and sweet...perfect subjects.
I got hundreds...but these are just some of my favorites...for Lyndsi to see.
And this shot...may be the closest I got to getting a smile from this sweet girl.
I did everything I could think of...sing, yell, be silly, shake toys over my head...nothing was getting her to crack.
I just love a thumb sucker...is there anything sweeter?
And she had her lovely...ugh...I can hardly stand the cute.
Thank you Lyndsi and Rick for letting me document some of your history.
It is such a joy and privilege. :)
I hope you love them.

xo

p.s. If you are in or near Charlottesville and need some photos...I am friendly and cheap. :)
My email is over on the right. :)
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goodness for YOU!

So first of all...you all are awesome.
To say thanks for all your amazing and comforting comments on the last post...
well thanks just doesn't do it.
You made me feel less like a freak and more like a normal mom...doing normal mom things.
That, I can handle.
And if you still think I am terrible...well...we can still be friends right?
So have been super duper busy...getting things in line for this here blog...
...a couple of fun things to share with you.
First...remember THIS from last year?
Go check it out and come back...

Well it is THAT time again!
And man...I have got some super duper giveaways for you.
I mean...good enough that I am considering renting a p.o. box in a neighboring town and going by the name Cornbread Jones so I can win them.
They are that good.
But there is still room.
If you have a shop and want to offer up a giveaway...you just send me an email and we will see what we can do...last year the response was SO great that I didn't have time to do them all before Christmas!
This Friday is the first Favorite Things Giveaway...and it is JUST the thing to get you moving.
Come back then...
So here is a little commenting incentive for you.
Once a month (at least for November and December)
I am going to choose my favorite comment from the month...and
send you a cupcake!
Just for being you...because I can.
And because I am really dying to know the hundreds of you who stop by and never leave a comment...if I have to bribe you out of lurkdom...then so be it.
Consider yourself bribed.
So come on all you witty folk, you funny people, you sweet people, you sassy people.
Hit me with your best shot.
Any post, any comment could be a winner.
And wouldn't a cupcake just make your day?
I'll even let you choose the flavor. :)
One more thing...
If you are having some crisp fall days...I have the perfect thing...

Crock Pot Baked Potato Soup

1. Wash potatoes and prick several times with a fork.

2. Bake in foil in a preheated oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until done.

(I did this in the microwave minus the foil)

3. Let cool.

4. Cut potatoes.

5. Melt butter in a heavy sauce pan over low heat.

6. Add flour, stirring until smooth.

7. Cook 1 minutes, stirring constantly.

8. Gradually add milk.

9. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture is bubbly.

10. Pour into crock pot and then add potato cubes, salt, pepper, crumbled bacon, cheddar cheese and chicken granules.

11. Cook on High for 4 hours.

12. If soup is to thick, add a little milk at a time until desired thickness is achieved.

13. Garnish with additional cheese and crumbled bacon.


Yummy and easy. My favorite combo!


Whadya say?


xo

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no more.

There is one area of my life that brings me more stress than any other.
And I know that it is self inflicted.
That I am allowing it to happen.
But I think maybe I have had a break through.
~*~
You see...since Aaron was born we have barely been to church.
It is just. too. hard.
Some women have babies that don't bat an eye at a missed nap.
Easy going, roll with the punches kind of babies.
I don't have those kind of babies.
Five minutes past nap time and Aaron will let you know...over and over and over again.
He screams through each MOPS meeting.
Makes it hard to enjoy MOPS...really hard.
He misses a nap and we all suffer.
~*~
So church has been missed. In more than one way.
And for months now, every time I bring it up...I feel judged.
I have been told...just drop him off in nursery and walk away.
Hmmm...something about knowing my kid is screaming his head off makes it hard to focus on a sermon. Knowing that I will deal with the aftermath for days makes it hard to get into the heart of worship.
I have been told that my kids will pay the price for us not getting there regularly.
I beg to differ.
Being in a church makes you no more a Christian than being in a garage makes you a car.
We are always talking to our kids about Jesus.
Moses has his MOPS class...which is basically Sunday school.
We feed ourselves in other ways, too.
We are doing the best we can for our family.
Jesus is no stranger in our home.

And last night it hit me...
Condemnation is not from the Lord.
I shouldn't be feeling like I am carrying some big ugly secret.
Jesus knows I am doing my best...inviting Him into our home, talking about Him with our kids...seeking Him out in our day to day.
~*~
On top of that...we feel for sure that we are supposed to be finding a new church home...due to some things going on at our current church.
It's a bummer.
It is hard. It makes me sad. All of it.
It makes me miss our old church...where everything was easy.
So once we get to the place where morning naps are not critical we will be hunting down a new church. Sigh. Does anyone really like doing that?
~*~
But for now...we will do our best. And feel no judgement.
We will seek Him out in ways that we can...through friends, online sermons, reading and worship.
~*~

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
Romans 8:1


I am going to live it and believe it.


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pumpkin things.

We did a little pumpkin carving goodness today. :)
Here is mine. :)
And here is Doug's. : )
I am positive that we had more fun doing this than Moses did. :)
And to prove that he is not ALWAYS stinkface.
Here is my sweet boy smiling. :)

:)
Happy Day to you!
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so.

So, let's just say...that this sweet adorably cute baby wakes up at 4:30am.
Probably because one of these two tooth bumps has yet to produce a tooth.
He cries just enough to ensure that you will not go back to sleep.
Awesome.
Then. When he finally falls back to sleep...
He sleeps for a WHOLE thirty minutes.
Goody goody.
While he is up, he shows you some of the new stink faces he is working on.
You lose count. And are about to lose your mind as well.
And he throws one more at you.
Then you remember that there is a roll of crescent rolls in the fridge just dying for a better destiny...

EASY PEASY CINNAMON ROLLS

1 can refrigerated crescent rolls
1/4 c. butter, softened
4 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon

GLAZE:
1 c. powdered sugar
2 tbsp. apple juice or milk

Lay crescent rolls flat. Spread with butter. Combine sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle this over rectangles. Roll up each crescent as normal.
Place each roll heavy side down .

Bake at 350 degrees for 15-17 minutes.
Glaze warm rolls.
Redeem crappy morning.

xo

P.S. 50% OFF IN THE SHOP...MAKING ROOM FOR NEW GOODIES!!
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happy hodge podge.

I don't do craft shows.
It's true.
I generally find them stressful and you have to sell a butt-load of stuff to make up for the usually high cost of a table at a craft show.
But if it is a FREE craft show...at a place that I am going to be anyway...why not?
MOPS is having our annual business night...
I have been crafting away...making lots of items...many of them NEW!
They will get to see them first...
lots of cute Christmas things.
So...

Just a heads up...the shop will be closing later on today and may stay closed for a bit....if there is something in there that you don't want someone else to get...you might want to snatch it up...it might not be there when I re-open.

We also haven't left the house since Sunday...because of this kid. He has had a fever since Sunday night...but I am pretty sure it is because of those two top teeth trying to peek through...
But I kind of love it(the not leaving part) and I have gotten SO much done...I love this time of my life...all too soon we will have to follow a school schedule...and sports and who knows what else...but for now we can stay home for days at a time.

Here is why having a 3 year old is just plain fun: Moses' new reward of choice are those temporary tattoos. He earns one for doing one thing or another. The other day after earning one, we went to the kitchen to get it...I ask him "where do you want it?"...he proceeds to pull down his pants, THEN his tighty-style underwear,then points to two inches above his knee and says "right here."

Kids are fun. :)
Here's a peek at a new holiday item...
And if you haven't made this yet...you really should.
Or shouldn't.
I made some for my MOPS table...and you, LEAH! :)

I stole the recipe from Julie and I won't tell you how many times I have made it since. :)
(you can click on the recipe to enlarge it and print it off).

Happy day to you!

xo
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defining a good day.

Like most moms and wives I am sure,
I lie awake at the end of every day evaluating
how I think I did in both of those categories and more...
Did I do good?
How could I have done better?

If I had good design skills I would list all of my "requirements of a good day" in some pretty way...and frame them to hang somewhere in my house...where I could think about them before I went to bed.

They are kind of like my "how to" to be a good mom (and wife)...things like:

Did I hug them?
Did I kiss them?

Did I tell them that I love them?
Did we talk about Jesus?

Did we pray together?
Did we PLAY together?

Did I give them undivided attention?
Did I do something special for them?

Did I feed them?
Did we laugh together?

Did I console them?
Did we share a secret?

Did I encourage good habits?
Did I help them feel valued?

Did I show them something new?
Did we talk about the day?

Did I take care of some need?
Did I take CARE of them?

Did I make them feel precious?
Did I make them feel loved?

Did we make a good memory?
Did we read together?


Among so many I am sure...

I'd love to know...
what is on YOUR "how-to" list?




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cause i love them.

Moses from birth to one...
From one to two...
From two to three.
It just amazes me at how much he has changed in three short years.
For these collages...I generally try to pick a couple or so of my favorites from each month of the year and try to choose photos that show his personality or some characteristic of him that we don't want to forget. :)

As I look at these...and all the wonderful fall stuff going on around us I have been aware that it didn't have to be this way...the Earth never HAD to be this beautiful...but He did it because He could...because He delights in us...delights in us delighting in what He has done...

Just looking around at all the beauty of fall, I can't help but think...

Blessed be His glorious name forever; And may the whole earth be filled with His glory.
Psalm 72:19

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the last detail.

The final detail of the robot party...the thank you.
This year we upped Moses' involvement in his thank you's...
I drew out a simple, fill in the blank note...then photo copied it.
Moses job was to color each of them...and I think he did quite great.
Then he sat with me as we filled them in together.
I love the added extra of showing his coloring progress. :)
This way of doing thank yous will (hopefully) help him to know the importance of showing gratitude and to get in the habit of sending thank yous.
Then every year I do a collage to include in the family thank you cards. This one is obviously from two to three...I do a large print for us to hang and I LOVE LOVE to look at them hanging on the wall together. It is SO fun to see how he changed from birth to one, from one to two and now from two to three.

It's a great way to send photos without send a million of them...you can make them at kodak.com or other places I am sure.

Like it or not, I plan to do them until at least 18. :)

:)
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let me just tell you.

You see this baby here?
You think he is 100% cute and sweet and cuddly...and all things baby right?
And really, you would be right. Because he is.
BUT he also has more attitude than ANY baby I have had the blessing to know...
This face...this face is JUST the beginning.
He is not crying here.
Merely sharing his annoyance with you...this is his "I'm warning you" face.
Then it gets real ugly.
He makes this face at us SO much that we have given it a name....baby stinkface.
You know how sometimes people give you the stinkeye? Well Baby Aaron wants you to know for SURE that he is annoyed with you...so he goes all out and puts his whole face into it.
Yesterday when I was vacuuming he gave me this face the WHOLE time. Even when I was in the other room...I would peek around the corner and sure enough...there was a stinkface waiting for me.
And this is not a rare occurrence. This happens everyday. Often.
He is a happy baby but very eager to show his displeasure with you.
And he is not usually crying when he is doing this...just disgusted.
Attitude.
Here is another phase. The "so mad I am shaking" phase.
You can't tell from the photo but his face is trembling here.
He gets even madder if you giggle about it.
And this photo...
And this photo are his newest tricks.
Here he is screaming while holding his breath.
Yep.
His little face will go red and everything.
And he gives it all he has too.
Then he puts his head down like this...
it's like he is praying for strength to go on putting up with us.
And then the next moment he is happy.
Crazy kid.
In other news...I got some bloomers made. :)
And some new silhouettes of my boys...I was trying to go for something a little different this time...now I just need to figure out how I want to hang them. :)

Happy Friday to you!!!

xo
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