Friday, September 27, 2013

Ring Bearer Rehearsal Wear

It's here! Bestie A's wedding weekend. I can not put into words how ecstatic I am to celebrate the union of A & R.  Even Peanut is getting more and more pumped for his big role as the ring bearer. I couldn't possibly pass up the opportunity to make something special for him to wear at the rehearsal tonight. 
And this is what I came up with.

Creating this shirt was super simple. I took a white polo from Tar-jey.

Added iron on letters from Amazon (they have these cheaper in the stores but I didn't mind paying a bit more to have them delivered to my door)

And I've got one cutie-pie tee. I can not wait to see JJB rock this one.

As an added bonus, there were quite a few letters left over for future crafting. While I was fixing Peanut's shirt I went ahead and monogrammed his library tote.

And with that, I'm off to prepare for the weekend…. Let the Party Begin!!!! 

ETA: Here is the shirt in action.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Garden of Lazarus

If you recall our 2013 Home Goals, two of them were garden related. The first was to plant a vegetable garden. It might be tiny, but seeing as it was our first garden ever in this home, we figured we were better off not biting off more than we could chew. 

The second gardening goal, and perhaps far more important than the first, was to not kill the garden. Like all new things, we attentively cared for our new garden. Watering and feeding as needed. And our plants loved us back with bountiful goodies. 

But then the summer rain came & drowned our poor little plot. With all the commotion of back to school and a leisurely visit to the lake, our dainty garden was written off. I figured our minimal harvest was a success for our rookie year. 

Last week when we were camped out in the backyard watching the roofing action, Peanut happily announced that our garden was brimming with tomatoes, peppers & cucumbers. 

We are back to nurturing our plants and looking forward to tasting our own fall harvest. And since the kiddies took such a liking to the garden, plans are in the works for a much larger garden plot next spring. I'll be back next week with more details.

As for you guys' gardens, are they still producing away or did you lose plants this year? Am I tooting our horn for nothing; maybe it is traditional for plants to produce a second time in the early fall? Do tell, I am clearly not a gardening expert.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Knobbing It Up {Kids' Bath Progress}

Ever have one if those projects where you wonder if it's worth the effort? Well the kids' bath is turning out to that way. Energized by the encouraging comments you all left on my last bathroom update, I headed out to look for mercury glass knobs for the vanity. 

I managed to scout out some luminescent lovelies on an end cap at HomeGoods. I happily scooped them up, brought them home and ran upstairs to try them out.  

They were proportion perfection. The chunky nobs anchored the vanities and elevated them from shabby to chic (see you all know your stuff). I was thrilled. 

Until this happened. 

YoU'vE. GoT. tO. Be. KiDdInG!!!! 

I stood there for a moment giving serious consideration to making the drawer on the right inoperable. After all it is just the baby's drawer and he doesn't have all that much stuff. 

Once I came back to reality and accepted that the aforementioned slacker solution isn't viable, I started to brainstorm. Into my mind popped this image. 

Hello mudroom cabinets! A quick swap and we are back in business. And I still can not believe that at HomeGoods I was able to locate the same knobs I purchased nearly one year ago.

I'm taking it as a sign that this project is meant to be. I'm looking forward to smooth sailing from here on out. (And for all you wondering, the paint has been removed from hinges and thanks for tolerating these subpar iPhone pics. My camera has been acting up lately.)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Fall in the Front

Despite the warmer temps forecasted for the week, it is officially fall and I'm wasting no time welcoming my favorite season.

On the front door I've hung our fall wreath; the first to hang since the door had its update earlier in the year. A pair of urns from the deck shed their summer floral and now sport DIY pumpkin topiaries. While a double swag of fall foliage & beaded gourd garland tops it all off. 

The pumpkins in the topiaries I've had since Hubby & I got married. I would display them individually along the mantel in our old home. After 5 minutes with a glue gun, I reinvented them into something more fitting to my current needs. I opted not to fill the bottom of the urn with greenery/leaves in favor of a more tailored and clean appearance. (FYI: I ran a wooden stake out of the bottom pumpkin & into the urn to avoid losing them on a blustery fall day.)

I couldn't let the front entrance have all the fun. The addition of two more faux pumpkins (these will be swapped out with real ones once we visit the pumpkin patch) and a large wooden pumpkin cut out dress up the seating area next to the driveway. I've got a few pillow ideas for the chair, I just need to find the time to sew.

And it just won't be an accurate depiction of our home in the fall without the mighty Bear's flag rippling in the wind. Isn't it so kind of Hubby to be a fan of a team whose colors coordinate so swimmingly with the autumnal hues!?!

The front yard won't stay this way for long, the littles are chomping at the bit to hang the halloween ghosts we made together last year. They"ll have to wait a bit longer though, no halloween decorations until after October 1st.  Even then, it is pushing my fill of ghoulish decorating.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Weekend Recap {Birthday, Bachelorette & A Break}

What a whirl wind of a weekend. It started Friday with a marathon session of homework, piano lessons & finally a much deserved night out at Bestie H's house for a Park Lane jewelry party. I placed quite a few lovely pieces on order including this  necklace

Saturday morning Belle & I had our library date. Getting the chance to meander through the aisles of books without two younger brothers in tow is quite a special treat. After selecting an assortment of titles, we ran back home to pick up the boys & Hubby for a birthday party.

Bestie B's beautiful daughter E turned 5 and celebrated at the horse ranch we visited over the summer. The birthday girl looked beyond darling in her fall dress and cowboy boots. She was perfectly dressed for the hayride.

Sadly, Belle had to leave early for ballet class as she is now an assistant in the class preceding hers. She is beyond thrilled to be helping, but it means she doubles her time at the studio on Saturdays. 

Once Belle & I returned from ballet, she headed out to YiaYia Terry & Papou Yiannis' house with Hubby & the boys while I prepared for a night out at Bestie A's bachelorette party. I can not believe that the wedding is less than 1 week away!!! Peanut's tuxedo (tails gals…I die!!) comes in Wednesday & speaking of attire I still don't have a dress. 

Today I secured a substitute for my Sunday School class to allow for some much needed morning recovery. After the craziness of Friday & Saturday and in anticipation of the weekend to come, it was so night just to hang at home and do whatever struck our fancy.

We played outside.

Honed our Rainbow Loom skills.

Made peach crisp from the last of YiaYia & Bopi's amazing peach tree.

I even got a chance to put up fall decorations (pics tomorrow) & go for a jog without an entourage.

Hubby is settled in for Sunday night football & I'm going to do some cleaning for the cleaning lady (don't you love that) before scouring the web for a dress for the wedding. If you've got any suggestions please send them my way! 

Hope this weekend was a lovely end to your summer & even lovelier start to your fall.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

School Photo Display

Belle brought home her school portrait earlier in the week and we had a good chuckle because in the two weeks it took to have the photos printed Belle has lost her last 2 front teeth. We are pretty certain she'll spend a fair portion of 2nd grade with a gaping hole for a smile. Good thing she's got a photo happy mommy to capture each and every toothless grin.

As far as displaying annual school photos around here we've opted to only display a 5X7 of the current year's photo. Each child has a designated frame on our gallery wall, which is at the top of our staircase & leads from the bedrooms to the kid's bath.

The littles love passing their photos on a daily basis. The wall is a mixture of baby milestone pictures, family portraits, important artwork & special notes. The majority of the frames are from Ikea but not all. 
I think as the kiddos get older, I'll end up switching to one of the school year montage frames so I can marvel at how much they've grown. For now though I love looking at their smiling faces as I walk up the steps (and let's all ignore the fact that the frame under Belle's 2nd grade pic is crooked…ummm k thanks:). 

How do you display your school/ family photos? Any other gallery wall fans?

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Truth {Having 3 Littles}


Confession time....I became a mom of 3 over a year and a half and I still feel like I'm treading water on a daily basis. I mean WTH!?! Despite waking at the crack of dawn (something I am not natural inclined to do) I'm still incapable of accomplishing much of anything other than the de javu of daily/weekly chores.

If I had to describe my life right now it would boil down mainly to constant crisis management sprinkled with a healthy dose of short order cook and the occasional hazmat joke folks. 

I got a text from Bestie H this morning sharing a Hilarious blog post. This poor blogger and I must lead double lives because this exactly what life with three kiddies has been for me….the simplest of tasks turning into disastrous messes & one of my poor babies having to take one for the team (insert mommy guilt).  

For now, I'm saying a prayer for the daily strength to keep my cool & remember that to everything there is a season. One day my heart will yearn for the tug at my pant leg, an eager helper always by my side & the call of "Mommy". 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Target Score

Happy Monday everyone! Hope your weekend was relaxing. I actually had the opportunity to take a nap on the couch Sunday afternoon…pretty sure I haven't purposefully done that in about 7.5 years (i.e.: pre kiddies).

Today I'm super excited to share with you all my latest Target score. I had the rare opportunity two weekends ago to run an errand there without any little ones in tow. So I took a few minutes (ok quite a a bit more than a few) and checked out the clearance sections in each department. I was immediately smitten with these dishes from the Threshold line clearanced for $2.50 each!

The iridescent glaze immediately reminded me of the Alison Evans oyster plater Hubby gifted me for Valentine's day.

I grabbed a place setting for six, 1 bowl & 1 coffee cup. The "mint" hue works perfectly with the colors scheme I am leaning towards in the living room (more details to come) so I am thinking the plates might make an appearance there in some shape or form. The coffee cup works perfectly as a q-tip holder in the kids' bath & the bowl I'll just use as a serving piece.

Anyone else score a clearance treasure lately? What do you think of Target's threshold line? Oh and incase you're wondering, we are under full roofer attack today. Here's the view out my kitchen window. Have a great one!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Taking Our Sweet Time: Picking Our New Roof

Way back in March as the first warm breezes blew, Hubby & I began the process of researching a new roof. When we purchased the house, we knew that the nearly 30 year old shingled roof was on its last leg. We hoped to buy ourselves some time & managed to weasel about 3 years out of it. Finally when we started to notice water spots on our master bedroom ceiling we knew it was time to bite the bullet.

We initially were leaning towards replacing the roof with cedar shake again. But the more we thought about it, and the more we had daily encounters with spiders & silverfish in our second story, the more we knew that an asphalt shingle is the route to go. As it was explained to us, cedar shake is an organic product and insects are drawn to it…remove the shake, remove the bugs. SOLD!

So now that the decision was done, it was a matter of shingle selection. We slapped up a few samples and couldn't stand them. First we tried GAF's Timberline shingle in Weatherwood as it is manufactured to mimic the look of shake. It did not.
The undertones were green and just made the whole house look nondescript. And when the sales rep said it was the most popular shingle, that put the nail in the coffin for me.  After all the work we put into our home to make it reflective of our individual family, the last thing we want to do was plop down some major coin for something we felt indifferent about and is on every other house in the subdivision. 

We went back to the shingle brochure and this time picked out Woodland Designer shingle (again GAF) in Cedarwood Abbey. Once the samples went up it was clear that this one wasn't it. The shingles lacked depth and even though they were an upgrade from the Timberline they looked cheaper. Plus the color was underwhelming.

Disheartened, I turned to pinterest and poured through my pins of  inspirational exteriors and discovered the common thread: light exteriors & dark roofs. Then serendipitously a YHL post documenting their new roof showed up in my bloglovin feed. Each and every time we looked throughout he GAF brochures, we never noticed the Camelot II because it was featured on the front interior cover and we just blew right past it…duh! Well you know what they say, third times a charm.

We negotiated back and forth with two different roofers and in the end opted to pay a bit more for a family owned business that does not use subcontractors. And after one day of work, I have to say it was  the right decision. The crew is pleasant, respectful & super tidy! Fingers crossed the rest of the job goes just as smoothly (it's a big one scheduled to be 4 full days). Can't wait to share the reveal with you all!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Portrait & Patriots

After the fireplace makeover this is the quick solution I threw together. I knew that the painting' scale was off but it worked as a placeholder.

While YiaYia and I worked on the pillows, we brainstormed different options for fireplace art. I was initial dead set against using family pictures up there. Probably because that was the what we did in our last ho e and I was looking for away to switch it up. But as we talked the more we came full circle back to one of two options:

  1. A set of three square frames (same as the ones over our couch) hung in a vertical line each containing a photo of one of the kiddies. 
  2. A large family photo

Afraid that the 3 photos might be too busy, I opted for one large black and white of our family. The photo is from our beach trip back in April. I had it printed poster size (20x30) at Costco for $8.99 and hung it in an Ikea frame.

I have to say, YiaYia was right. And though I usually prefer family portraits in color; the black & white print adds a softness to the room.

So there you have it…fireplace is officially finished. And for the true before and after, check out what we started with:

And on a serious note, I can not help but think of those whose families were forever changed by the cowardly acts 12 years ago. As I look at my family's portrait over the fireplace, I anticipate it changing as the years pass; yet there are so many whose walls are full of portraits that are frozen in time. A reminder of a loved one no longer here. To them all I send my prayers, love and a note that in our home we haven't forgotten & we fly our flag proudly in honor of them all.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Pillow Talk

The family room progress is slow going, but during my summer blogging hiatus YiaYia came over and helped me sew pillows for the family room. And I use the phrase "helped me" loosely as it congers up images of her assisting me. Truth is, YiaYia managed to whip out 4 pillows in the time it took me to layout the design for my one.  

If we walk down memory lane, you'll recall that we started off with our originally cream monogram pillows from Ballard designs and layered on the Ikea toile pillows.

We then brought the blue & white to the other side of the room with two matching throw pillows on the leather club chairs. YiaYia took a $3 white pillow cover from Ikea and sewed a seersucker band down the center of the pillow and then trimmed it out with navy grosgrain. Now the pillows help to move your eye around the room & carry the colors from the mantel to that side of the family room.

As for my single contribution to the room, I put together a fret work pillow following the tutorial I created for my outdoor pillows. For whatever reason, this time the pillow took me forever to complete & was exhausting. For that reason, there is only one but I think it adds a nice graphic punch to the corner of the couch. 

And paired with the solid navy pillow w/ white piping & a 24x24 seersucker sham with navy piping (both made by YiaYia from remnant fabrics I had in my stash), they anchor the center of the couch and add a bit of masculinity to the room.

Now I'm on the hunt for a few good orange pillows to toss into the mix when the Fall finally comes. It is in the 90s today so seersucker still feels completely appropriate in my book! I've been browsing esty & when I finally pick the winners I'll be sure to let you all know.

I'll be back tomorrow to share what I decided to do with the fireplace mantel & my much too small DIY artwork.