Fireplace Redo 

WP_20150321_003So along with the many projects our lovely little cottage has given us, cabinet refinishing, fans, lights, walls, mud rooms etc.  There was a big, bright, red one in the room, the family room to be exact and it was staring us right in the face. Now don’t get me wrong I like brick, but I was a little overwhelmed by the intensity and attention this fireplace was taking. So I set about figuring how we could give our fireplace a “cheap” face lift. After researching  multiple options, and going over them with My Mr, who actually hadWP_20150324_001 strong opinions on this matter, he usually leave decor and style to me  And he really wanted to keep the texture. So here’s what I came up with!  A whitewashed look to take off the intensity and not destroy the texture the brick gives the room. Boy was it a lot of work, probably round 7 hours to do the whole thing. There was sponging the grout (which was the worst!), and painting the brick, then sponging the brick so it looked natural and not like there were paint brush lines. After the first section I stepped WP_20150329_21_27_34_Proback and thought “what did I just do to my fireplace?”  But My Mr. kept my confidence up, he would say “it looks good, I like it, keep going.”  So I kept at it!  I broke every nail on my hands, and I think I bruised my finger tips sponging all the grout, they were raw and sore even with gloves on. I finished, stepped back and finally caught the vision it only took me doing pretty much the whole thing and then seeing it in the light of day to love it. Nice texture, and softening of the bricks harsh color it really looks lovely now. Something we will enjoy for years to come. Whitewashing skill acquired!  I love the details of our home, there are things about it that make it so unique and beautiful. 

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Snow a Go

WP_20151231_10_58_05_ProWith Christmas break in full swing we sought a bit of the snowccf 2015 we grew up with as kids.  The idea of seeing our little Mr frolicking in the snow just made us giddy!  So with a great tip we headed up the mountains for a little snow day.  As we got higher and higher the scenery got more spectacular.  Trees draped in thick layers of snow, the mountains capped in snow slipping in and out of wispy clouds.  I am constantly in awe 130961815324643452of this beautiful place we live.  Arriving to knee high snow, we pretty much jumped in!  Well we jumped in and little Mr. crawled.  He was a little short to plowArtile-01Jan16-190219 through the snow on his own though he gave his best effort to walk, chest high snow is really heavy.  We eventually showed
him how to throw it in the air which delighted him.  But the big hit was when we AdobePhotoshopExpress_f484e8608a224414942f1ac789713649showed him he could eat it!  Yeah that may be a little gross but you know you all have done it and who better to learn from than Mom & Dad.  He was gracious enough to share a couple handfuls with us, so nice right?!  Mmmmmm nothing like the taste of mountain snow, it always has a hint of dirt.  Next up was snow angels which he enjoyed laying on Dad and watching Mom.  We had a blast!  He didn’tAdobePhotoshopExpress_058794299f034a78988880d38a0c6e7e want to stop, but soaking wet pants made us put a stop to the fun.  We ate a quick picnic lunch in the car and started back.  Nothing better than cozy feet on the dash, My Mr. by my side, a sleepy, happy boy in the back and beautiful mountains ahead.  Perfection!

 

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Benched

91e57ddeea2640678dc37e6fb9386841Our new house has been wonderful but also brought some challenges as we re configure how we function with our furniture in our new place.  I had been toying with the idea of building a bench for our eating area.  The space just seemed to lend itself to one rather than chairs, glad I bought my nice ones, Awhh well.  Anyway I can still use some chairs so not a total loss.  Regardless I didn’t just want a un-comfy wooden bench and there were space constraints so I really had to figure this out!  While doing my usual craigslist searches I stumbled upon a tufted headboard.  I thought gosh I like that wish I had a place to use it.  Well two months later it hit me and the head board was still posted.  I enlisted my handy mans advice on how I might turn this headboard into a bench.  Which essentially gave him another crazy project to think about, he doesn’t have enough :).  So we thought it through and made a plan,  I talked the seller down to a quarter of her asking price I mean it had been up for a while, and they wanted it gone, right?  We brought it home and promptly destroyed it!  Yep I carefully cut the fabric back and we sawed the puppy down the middle, in essence making a back and seat for our bench.  WP_20151124_08_19_22_ProThen we added the fabric staples to secure the cut fabric, not an easy task but we made it work!  Then came the wood working for My Mr.  I of course didn’t want average legs, NO I wanted custom corbels.  I mocked up a general design and wished My Mr. luck.  He researched and diagrammed, cut and cut again, then finished sanded. And he created my corbels!  Beautiful!  A little paint and My Mr’s handy wall mounting skills (my little Mr. getting into the mix and learning from Dad), we tested and bounced to ensure it was secure.  Then over the Thanksgiving holiday tested it with 4 adults and well total Success!!!!  It is awesome!WP_20151124_08_19_15_Pro  It is Beautiful, It was made with love, I know I know cheesy but it was actually a really fun project for us to do together.  Now our wall seating is perfect and comfortable, even little Mr likes it, of course another place to climb on, how could it possibly fail.  So another project under our belt in 2015!

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Hankering to Hang!

I had a major dilemma on the stocking front for our family.  First the ones I tend to like cost and arm and1 a leg, and well I just couldn’t make myself pay for them, maybe in the future, but not this year.  Second; have you noticed how stocking now days seem to be the size of a small child?  I mean a kids whole Christmas could fit in some of these.  I guess I’m old fashioned that stockings are meant to be for little, simple things not a giants foot. And Third yes I am picky, possibly the pickiest person when it come to my stuff, ask my mom, which is why number one is a problem.  So between my lack of budget, size capacity and my obvious insanity I made the crazy decision to make my own.  I of course scoured the “Pinterest” universe for ideas and patterns.  Finally settling on a hybrid of a couple different stockings and making my own downsized stocking pattern.  With coupons in hand I made the drive to JoAnn’s.  Picked out my felt and started the madness.  2Special Thanks to my mother in law who helped me with the cutting and interfacing.  I also wanted these to have some unique touches.  Have you ever hear of “felt wool.”  Our little diaso market sells it and my friend Stina and I have always wanted to make something from it, “stina I did it.”  All be it simple I learned to make felt balled to act as my holly berries.  Heck if these little gals could do it like pros, maybe I could do it too.  50 tried later I had enough, geesh that was the most time consuming part, why I do this to myself I have no idea i could have slapped on some beads and called it good but  . . . . Nooooooo I have to be crazy. (sorry enough of my obvious control issues)  I sewed on my leafs, sewed the sides together, added hanging hooks and finally added those time sucking berries.  And as my little Mr would say Ta-Da!  They were done!  Now they are hung by the chimney with care.  Finally ready to be filled on that special night!  Lovely memories!

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Corky Christmas Advent

Ok, so if you haven’t heard about this amazing Advent I just have to give it a little plug.  25 Days of Christ is a really beautiful and AdobePhotoshopExpress_ef21cfe0f6f0467e8dd36342db6834a0well put together Christ centered advent with a devotional guide and scripture references, video suggestions I mean the works!  I was lucky enough to know about this because the gal who created it is in my church congregation.  Though they are sold out for this year they will restock next year, so keep it in the back of your mind, the website is here.  I got the unfinished set and loved painting and creating the ornaments with my own style.  It was a fun craft night for Mommy!  With my ornaments done I couldn’t figure what I would hang them on.  I wanted this to hang in our family hallway to be a constant reminder.  Between a rather destructive two year old and limited hallway space constraints I came up with my cork Christmas tree.  A Walmart bought cork board, with a white molding added to make a frame.  I painted a modern type tree on the cork and voila!!  We were set, clear push pins acted as our hangers.  It is now incorporated into our bed time scripture routine and my little Mr loves pushing in the pins and hanging the ornaments every night!  Along with being a fun reminder of the reason for the season, it is a beautiful addition to our hallway.  Thanks 25 days for making another meaningful Christmas tradition!

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Miracle Day

IMG_3389Today we celebrate the changing of our lives forever.  After years of trying to begin our family in every way imaginable our little boy found his way to us.  It was the guiding hand of a loving Heavenly Father who set in motion a string of life-changing decisions and events that lead to his special addition to our family.  I would be lying if I said there wasn’t a sense of fear on the day of his birth.  I mean, how could anyone have the courage to place a child they had carried and couldn’t help but love to someone else?  It was something even I, as much as I wanted, could understand how unfathomable this decision was.  It took a very special birth mother.  The moment I held my son for the first time I thought “whether you get to be mine forever or someone else’s you are a miracle and have changed me forever.”  I held him and allowed myself to drink in the moment.  My Mr. and I looked at this little being and emotions overwhelmed us.  This season has forever taken on a new meaning and I cherish this beautiful little boy who is forever ours.  I am reminded of the birth of our Savior, for whom this season is truly about.  I have an abiding love for the miracle of His birth and coming into this world giving light and life to the world.  I am grateful for this personal reminder to me of the grace and mercy of a loving Savior who has borne the sadness of the years when we felt this miracle might never come, and who through His life made it possible that we will be together forever.  We pray that we may live a life of gratitude for our special Christmas miracle as he is truly a gift from God.

Happy Birthday My Little Mr.  We love you, more than you know.

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Backyard Visitors

WP_20150523_001On a relaxing Saturday morning in our rather, well unkempt back yard, yes it’s a work in progress it’s been neglected for a few years.  Anyway, we looked out our lovely bedroom window, talking and enjoying the fact that our little Mr. was sleeping in.  Soon we noticed a white fuzzy thing in the corner of the yard.  We automatically thought it was another local cat prowling the yard, Spike our neighbors cat is a regular, he’s nice so we don’t really mind their coming and goings and hey they keep down the rodents.  But this was not Spike or the Orange tabby that he buddies around with.  Nope thisWP_20150523_002 was a white spotted fuzzy one, or so we thought!  The one mass melted into two and I yelled to My Mr. “They’re possums!”  Oh dear, I remembered the episode of parks and recreation with the possum, and while not exactly accurate I knew I didn’t want them around.  They scurried around and made themselves at home under our deck for the day, PERFECT, nocturnal animals, grrrrr!  For the remainder of the day they tormented Pax with their very presence (smell mostly).  But with our yard cleaning noise and lack of sustenance, (they’re meat eaters) they must have pack up and headed out under the cover of night.  Thank heavens for that, let’s hope they don’t remember our cozy deck and decided to raise a family there, that would be a nightmare!  Possums beware!

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Phantom with My Man

WP_20150507_005

WP_20150507_010My Mr is amazing!  He has kept a secret for a couple months that he got us tickets to see Phantom of the opera at the Paramount Theater in Seattle.  This was the WP_20150507_007first time for me to go into this beautiful historic building.  The amazing ceiling captured our attention and entertained us as we pointed out the intricate details and pondered how this was structurally possible.  The play began and we enjoyed the memory filled music and beautiful stage design.  We would whisper, ” Oh that was a cool effect.”  we splurged and during intermission bought an overpriced Twix bar to share.  It was a great evening with  this amazing man i get to call mine. 

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Syncing Up with the Girls

IMG_0543You know sometimes mom’s gotta let loose.  I have been so blessed to come to Washington and meet some of the most amazing women.  With all the differing opinions and backgrounds the conversation is never boring.  I always find myself inspired and more understanding after a night out with them.  Oh one night recently we got together to let loose.  I had at another get together mentioned that I I wanted to be on Jimmy Fallon and do his lip sync battle as I felt he had NOTHING on me.  This of course was taken as a challenge and another Girls night was planned to, well see if I was actually as confident as I said I was.  Now I’m no dummy I’m not IMG_0541standing up there and performing just me.  So we all hit the candy bar, Thanks Meri for providing, and let the sugar flow.  It also happened to be late and thanks to a lot of encouragement by Melinda we got the party started.  Now I won’t divulge anything further about the night other than that I did perform, and lots of wonderful music was shared and enjoyed by all.  The rest of the details will be locked firmly in the confines of the brave few of us that were there.  It will always be a treasured and amazing memory!  I am so grateful for this wonderful sisterhood who loves me for the weirdo I am and have been (and continue) to be such a wonderful support to me.  Thank you ladies your friendship means more to me than you know. 

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Humming Sound

IMG_9522A quite simple moment, snuggled up on a warm summer’s evening in our hammock, intently staring at our lovely hummingbird feeder. (special housewarming gift from my parents)  You see all my childhood my grandparents had hummingbird feeders out their kitchen window.  Soon there were two and we would sit and look out waiting for a glimpse of these beautiful, tiny, spirited birds.  In my adulthood my parents too have hummingbird feeders hung outside their window.  Now as I wash dishes, or sit in my kitchen at dinner I look out my windows and watch for these birds.  Amazing the memories caused by such a simple thing.  The gentle hum of their wings is soCollage-16 soothing to me, and they buzz quickly by and hovering for an instant IMG_9562perch on the ledge of the feeder.  They take a few seconds at first but now that the feeder has been there a few days they now sit for a minute or so, popping up and down, sipping and listening for a fellow hummingbirds approach.  I amazed by the beautiful colors these littleIMG_9513 birds have, one is green and black and the other a red, orange color enhanced by the setting sun, it’s lovely.  They both have these black and white stripes around their necks giving the look of  colored shirt to there colorful tuxes.  I love our new little visitors, I hope they stay all summer they add such fun to our windows.  A perfect quiet moment, only the click of my shutter and the fluttering of wings.  Oh the summer!

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Splish Splash

IMG_9450

IMG_9468With My Mr. And myself not being the strongest swimmers we made the commitment that when we had kids swim lessons from a young age would be required, we don’t want pass on our water deficiencies.  So little Mr. began his first swimming lessons and some lovely photo of me in a required swim cap which I think really captures the full beauty of my noggin.   But enough with my vanity.  He learned the first rule of swimming class.  Sitting patient at the edge of the pool until mom says he can get in, he did it flawlessly!  Once in the water he was a little tentative but eventually he treated it like a massive bath tub! (which he loves)  He would even try to get me to release him to be on his own, quicklyIMG_9460 learning that it was much deeper than his tub and letting mom help him was probably for the best.  Now we are a few weeks in and little Mr is a complete pro!  He loves the water and can go under water with ease.  He’s so tough!  He’s now our little fish and I’m sure he will be wanting to continue his swimming lessons from here on, I’m going to be a very tired, and happy Mommy with my busy little Mr!

bookmark bookmark bookmark

Kurios!

WP_20150206_001

My Mr. is constantly surprising me.  For a fun date night he look me to see the latest traveling Cirque du Soleil show, KURIOS! After the fun time we had last time, it was fun to head back!  It was like steampunk meets the circus.  We walked into the tent and asked the usher where our seats were, she walked us straight to the front row!  Even My Mr was surprised, he said I knew I got us good seats but not this good.  We settled down and within a few minutes the show was in full swing, the crackling of antique light bulbs lit the stage.  It always takes us a minute to get fully enveloped in the show, you know you have to suspend your reality and get into it.  The show was quirky and imaginative.  The stunts and acrobatics blew out minds, I mean who hurls themselves through the air like that?!  It was a fun night, and another fantastic memory!

WP_20150206_003

bookmark bookmark bookmark