Sunday, December 22

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, October 31

A Princess and a Frog

Happy Halloween to you and yours!

Wednesday, October 30

More Fall Fun

This is the first year we carved a pumpkin with the Peanut.  Of course, "we" is a very loose term.  
I did participate in capturing pictures, herding the Little Brother around, and roasting the pumpkin seeds. 

But the actual carving?  That was all the Hubs.  We found a cute little "not icky" pumpkin face online that was both Mommy and Peanut approved.

Daddy did a fantastic job, don't you think?


Friday, October 11

Pumpkin Patch 2013

Peanut is currently outside with her daddy and grandpa "helping" with projects and the Little Brother is down for a much needed nap after all the excitement this morning.  I even started a load of dirty clothes from this morning's excursion.  So with this quiet time on my hands, what a perfect chance to blog, am I right?

Peanut's preschool class went to our local pumpkin patch once again and this year, Hub's schedule worked out so he was able to attend too.

Thank goodness, otherwise we would have brought home a mud caked little squealer, otherwise know as the Little Brother.

Fun times.

No, we really had a great time though.  Even though Peanut hardly let me get a good picture of her picking out her pumpkin (or her brother's for that matter). 

The rule was that the preschoolers had to be able to carry their pumpkin back from the patch.  That meant no pumpkin for Little Brother three times his body size had he had his own way.  So rather than try and explain that to his 15 month old little self, we just let his big sister pick his out.  And she was more than willing. Did we expect anything less? 

Our little girl loved every minute and she even got to see her little buddy from last year.  Her friend is actually in the PM class (Peanut is in the AM) so it was a fun little reunion for them as well.  Can you believe how much they've grown? 

And we were TOTALLY blessed because it didn't rain and it wasn't even that cold this morning.  PTL!!!

The Little Brother is still sleeping so I am going to sneak off to do some shopping.  I can't even believe how productive today has already been! 


Thursday, October 10

Apple Harvest Time

I so wish I could show you all my beautifully preserved apples in the form of jarred applesauce, apple pie filling and apple butter. 

But sadly I cannot.

I simply haven't had the time.  What with the big consignment sale coming up and having some family in town this week--apple preservation simply hasn't happened.

I have made a killer apple galette though.  Yum, yum.  And my kids?  They hoot and holler and cheer when I slice them up an apple.  Every. time.

So this mama can't really complain.  Eating plain apples and apple galettes it is then

What is too funny and slightly scary is that Little Brother is fiercely independent like his big sister.  I gave him some bits of apple to keep him happy while I was making the aforementioned galette.  But there were tears and pouty lips and all kinds of displeased--and he was quite unhappy too.  Turns out he didn't want the bits of apple.  No, of course not.  He wanted the whole apple. 

And he was pleased as punch once he had the whole apple that he could hardly maneuver. 

Like I said, his independence at fifteen and a half months is just a bit scary. 


Saturday, September 28

Goodbye, Summer. We will miss you.

I used to be a "I only love fall and winter" kinda girl. I like wintery, snuggly clothes and I love a hot bowl of soup.  I don't even mind the ever present rain we have here in the Pacific Northwest--as long as I don't have to be out in it.

One of my favorite things to do is snuggle up with good book (or a good series on Netflix--whichever) when it's all nasty outside and just hunker down and wait it out.  'Cause I am a total homebody like that and if I don't have to go anywhere, well, that just makes this girlfriend happy.  (In fact, Hubs made a comment the other day as I was pulling out the extra blanket for our bed, that I should have been born a bear, because I really like to hibernate.)

Our boy's birthday is sort of our family's unofficial kick off to summer and our girl's birthday is the unofficial close to summer.  Our sweet little bookends.    

Anyhow, as I've gotten older, I have come to appreciate everything each season has to offer.  (Except spiders.  I still can't stand spiders.)  And for me, well, I simply wouldn't appreciate the spring and summer nearly as much if we didn't have fall and winter.  

And we had a great a summer.  A GREAT summer.  The kids love to be outside exploring and just taking in everything summer has to offer.  And that has all but come to an end.  We might have an occasional sun break in the next week or so, but after that?  It will be damp, cold, and dark until about the beginning of April.  And even then we will just get teased with glimpses of the sun for a good two to three months thereafter.  But all that is just a good excuse to get caught up on all those fall TV shows and it makes those nice days we do have all the more special, right? 

We stopped by my parents this past Thursday evening and they were taking advantage of one of the last dry days to get all the summer gear all packed up before the rain set in.

It's just a sad sight to see.  All gone until next year.  My mom might have even shed a tear or two.  Now she knows how I feel the day after Christmas.  It just sort of bums me out. 

While we were at my parents, we picked some of the pumpkins from my dad's garden for my "harvest" display I do outside our front door each year.  

So until I can officially start listening to my Christmas playlists (and who am I kidding? For me that would be anytime...), I guess I will just have to console myself with my spiced pumpkin candle and my favorite pumpkin scones and my favorite pumpkin dip.

And you know what? 

We wouldn't have pumpkins if it weren't for summer. 


Thursday, September 26

Another One Checked Off

Way back last summer, I posted some pictures after we were finally getting settled back into our home.  As I mentioned, there were lots of things that weren't quite finished, but they were definitely more than livable. 

Our computer desk was more than functional, but since we no longer had an "office" because of our bouncing baby boy, I wanted a computer desk that looked more like a built in--so it didn't look like an after thought.  You know, it was intended to be there all along.  Thanks, Pinterest.  

Anyhow, because I have some pretty awesome parents, they obliged and they made my ideas a reality.  My mom suggested we find an old wood desk on craigslist and take it apart and make it the custom desk I wanted.  Buying wood filing cabinets?  Expensive.  Building wood filing cabinets?  Way cheaper, but much more involved and requires a TON of time and effort.  So used it was. 

I don't have a before photo of what the wood desk looked like prior to the disassemblement.  Yes, I know, BLOGGER FAIL. However, to give you an idea, it was a dark wood roll top desk with filing cabinets on either side and a pencil drawer in the middle. 

I did think to take a before picture of the desk we were using prior.  It was basically two old metal filing cabinets (that I ended up selling on craigslist for $25 after we were done with them--can I just say I LOVE craigslist?) with a wood desk top across the top of the cabinets.  And it served it's purpose as a computer desk for me {eventually us} for 14 years. 

Anyhow, back to the custom built desk.  My parents used the wood filing cabinets from the craigslist desk and scrapped the rest.  My dad built the custom CPU cabinet on the left and the pencil drawer in the middle.  He added the false back so all those pesky cords were nice and hidden and my mom painted it bright white to match all the molding in the house.  She also played quality control.  Let's just say she has an eye for um, shortcuts, shall we say.

Oh, and for the record, I was totally cool with having a nice painted wood top of the desk, but my mom loves to go above and beyond.  It's her spiritual gift.  ;)  And I mean that in the most loving way.  Good enough is just good enough.  The end result should be fabulous. 

And the desk?  So it was.

My Christmas gift from my parents was finishing up the desk, complete with slab granite desk top.  They got the granite for cheap.  In fact, I think my mom said the custom cutting {rolled edge, computer cord hole in the back, etc.} was actually more than the granite itself!

And just this last week, Hubs finally got around to hanging all the cords in the back, so they weren't laying on the floor behind the false back.  Little Brother was a big help too, of course. 

Looks mighty fabulous, don't you think? 

Oh, and that very cool chair that just adds a ton of texture and visual interest? 

$10 at the Goodwill Dumpster.  

Monday, September 23

Like Mother, Like Daughter

My house is a disaster right now.

She says proudly.  

There is actually a small huge bit of pride in there, because I am FINALLY tackling a ginormous project. 

Ginormous doesn't even begin to describe it.

 Not even close.  

'Round here in these parts, they have these huge consignment sales in the spring and fall where moms sell their kids clothes that their littles have outgrown.  I've saved every stitch of clothing the Peanut has ever wornYou know, for those future girls we might have.  But then, dontcha know, God truly does have a sense of humor and we were blessed with the most beautiful baby boy for our second.   So those clothes we saved?  Don't really need them any more, 'cause we've decided we're done.  

You know what I mean. 

This last week, I requested that Hubs just bring it all in the living room (from our jam packed garage) so I could just tackle it head on.  

I've been working on it during nap times and at night after the munchkins have gone to bed.  To do these sales you have to hang all of the clothes on hangers facing the same direction, safety pin pants on the hangers, and finally tag and enter all the items into their online database.  It's quite the  undertaking.  Hopefully it will be worth it. 

The Peanut has "worked" along side me during the day. Of course, I was completely caught up in sorting, folding, and hanging, so I really didn't think much about it when she told me she was going to get some stuff ready to sell too. 

Last Thursday night, after I put both of the kids to bed, I come across this:

Apparently Polly Pocket had some clothes she wanted to off load as well. 

It makes me smile every time I think about it. 


Monday, September 16

End of Summer

What a difference a day makes. This photo was taken on Saturday. 

Sunny outside {as told from the amount of light streaming in from outside}, tank tops, and short sleeves. 

But then Sunday came and it brought clouds, rain, and some cooler temps. 

All of us even had long pants on.  When I say all of us, I refer to myself, Peanut, and Little Brother. 

Hubs was at work, but he doesn't count either way, because the man will wear shorts approximately 10 months of the year.  And to be perfectly honest, me wearing long pants isn't that momentous of an occasion either.  Because I wear pants approximately 10 months of the year. 

So really, what I should have stated was that the kids were both in long pants on Sunday. 

There.  It took me a hundred some words to say it, but I finally got to the point that the kids were both in pants for the first time in several months.

Such is autumn.

And while I don't enjoy the kids having to be cooped up inside, I am excited for the fall colors, scarves, boots, sweaters, soups, stews, hot chocolate and those fun fall activities.  

Plus, fall TV is about to start. 

And that makes me very excited. 


Sunday, September 15

It's Sort of Like History Repeating Itself

Our little Peanut had these jammies too.

But in pink.

Of course.

And now Little Brother gets to follow in her footsteps. 

With a ball in hand, instead of a dolly.

Of course.  


Friday, September 6

Tuesday, September 3

Tangled Birthday Party!

We have one more week of four and then our girl will be five.  Five.  I can't hardly believe it.  We had her party a week early this year (fantasy football draft complications--I know) and it's already over.  Now this next weekend, it will be just a quiet little gathering at home as we celebrate the day of her birth.  I can't believe we are already half way to ten.  A third of the way to fifteen, a quarter of the.....anyhow, you get the idea.  It's just amazing how time flies so fast. 

My mom took her to Disney on Ice last year and the Rapunzel braid was her choice souvenir.  Peanut was handed down the Tangled crown from her cousin, so score in both those departments. And funny enough, she didn't even wear either during the party.  Too busy having too much fun. 
I'm thinking this photo of Little Brother is gold for adolescence black mail. 
These senior picture poses......totally all on Peanut.  It's her new pose whenever the opportunity arises.  It makes me smile.
But, back to the party.  It was such fun!  I kind of totally convinced Peanut of the Tangled theme this year.  Okay, there was no arm twisting or anything illegal, but let's just say I totally talked up the fact that if we did a Tangled birthday party, we could light off sky lanterns.  And there was absolutely NO convincing needed after that.

And our girl loves Tangled.  She knows the songs by heart (except when she fills in the words with her own 'cause she can't remember) and she was deciding which boy at her party she would demand convince to play Eugene--AKA Flynn Rider--you know, so they could dance at the end.  Ahem.

That's our girl.  Because dancing =  getting married.

We did a nacho bar (complete with drippy, yummy, no real food whatsoever nacho cheese) and my wonderful mama made her always amazing fruit platter.  We had the standard cupcakes and ice cream and then because we were waiting for it to get dark for the lanterns, we also had a campfire at the end.  And no campfire is complete without s'mores.   So s'mores it was to close out the evening.

And lest you think I came up with all this stuff on my own, as I've said before, I can copy the heck off of someone elses ideas.  Thanks to Pinterest, there are no shortage of ideas.  Period.

Most of this stuff was very inexpensive thanks to the dollar store and Joanne's coupons and sales.  The cupcakes I made myself, the sign was from an old fence piece my parents had and paint I already had on hand, and the rest was just card stock, yarn, and a little creativity on the computer. 

Oh, and of course the sky lanterns.  They were a little pricey with the shipping (but quite honestly they really aren't terribly expensive in the grand scheme of things--I am just flat out cheap).  However, we do say NO a lot to our girl, just because we have such tight finances (we don't even have smart phones, people).  So when birthdays roll around, we do tend to indulge her a little.  And our Peanut is none the wiser--although she is a smart cookie and I am sure she will fully understand shortly.  But that is another post for another day. 

The sky lanterns worked just like they were supposed to.  Although we didn't let them go as they are designed to.  We tied them off with string, which the instructions say DO NOT DO.  Although we had a pretty wide open area to light them off in, my parent's neighbors have some big tall fir trees in the distance and we just felt it was way too much of a liability to let these lighted lanterns off on their own.  So that made the process a little more difficult than we anticipated and Hubs likened it to flying a flaming kite.  So that's fun.  I thanked Hubs more than once that evening for making my hair brained {Pinterest} ideas come to life.  I am always doing that.....coming up with some grand scheme and expecting my husband to figure out how to make it work.  Although my mom is the same way, so I know I come by it quite naturally.  And what's a girl with great ideas supposed to do? And we have to keep our husbands on their toes, yes? 

It was a great, fun day.  I got a little teary as we said goodbye to my mom and dad that evening.  Happy tears.....very much happy tears.   I am We are just so blessed.   We are so happy to be just minutes away from my parents and to have such a wonderful extended family and friends that are there for us.  I am so glad that Peanut and Little Brother have that, because you simply can't put a price on it.

Life is about relationships.  And you have to make the most of them. 

Next Up:  She starts her last year of preschool this Friday, where Miss Independent will become even more independent.

But I don't even know if that's possible.  


Saturday, August 31

Summer 2013? Check.

Been busy.....but such is life, right?  Last week we went back to Smalltown to visit our dear, sweet landlords that we had while we lived there.  It was just a short visit, but one we've been wanting to do for quite some time.  Yes, we have the kind of relationship with our former landlords that they open their home to us and let us stay with them.  I've said it once before, but I'll say it again--it was no coincidence that they were brought into our lives.

Can you believe it's been two years since we were swimming at their house?  I certainly can't.  But the photographic evidence I have tells me it's true.

As she did before, our sweet landlord friend sent me home with a box of tomatoes and cucumbers fresh from her garden.  So the day after we got home, I canned tomatoes and some AMAZING sweet relish.  I know there are a lot of relish haters out there.  Hubs included.  He never puts it on hot dogs.  But this stuff?  He'll eat it by the spoonful--as will I.  Words cannot express just how yummy and scrummy it is. 

Anyhow, I was able to can 10 pints tomatoes and two pints of relish.  Oh, and I also baked a peach crisp with a box of peaches I brought home with us.  We had some of the crisp for dessert and then in a rare moment of brilliance, I made a pot of oatmeal the next morning and mixed in the rest of the peach crisp with the oatmeal.  Verdict?  SO doing that again.  It was so, so, so, so good.

We also have been enjoying the nice weather and we have our dinner outside on occasion.  I snapped this little photo.  Peanut being silly and Little Brother being, well, a little brother.

We don't eat outside too often because our back patio gets the hot, afternoon sun.  Meaning, that would require me to break a sweat, which we all know I don't take too well with.  And second, we have a makeshift blockade so Little Brother can't hurl himself out the sliding screen door when the glass slider is open.  It's simply a PAIN to haul everything food related out back.  I know these "open" floor plans are all the rage (I honestly do like our floor plan), but let. me. tell. you.  They are a female dog to baby proof. 

Just saying.

Especially when you don't want to drop upwards of $100 on a play yard. So getting creative it is until I can trust him around screen doors.  Which is why I am starting to get a little excited for fall.

I said a little excited.  Not jumping up and down excited, just excited enough so we don't have to have our backdoor blocked all the time excited.

You know.  Well, that and then we get to do fall things.

And fall things?  Well, those are definitely fun times. 



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