Thursday, June 30, 2011

Three things

Quick post here... we're road tripping it tomorrow... so today I'm packing like a mad woman.  But let me share three of my favorite things today.

1.  What did I make with all those strawberries?  Well, I froze a bunch.  I made a pie.  And... I made a ton of fruit leather.  I stole my mom's food dehydrator and made a huge batch of strawberry banana fruit leather.  Just call me Jan.  The taste and smell make me feel behave like I'm 10 years old all over again.

2.  Most ingenious mama moment yet.  Why entertain 3 year old and feed 10 month old at the same time, when I can just arrange this?  Drinking your morning coffee in peace?  Priceless.

3.  I found this mirror at MCC for $10 dollars and change.  It may not be so pretty now, but imagine a coat of paint in a fun color like blue, green, pink... oh the possibilities.  Please ignore the image of me in jean capris (wishful thinking) accompanied by knee brace... this packing business is serious!!

That's it!  Back to laundry and packing.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


U pick strawberries.
The strawberry crops aren't so hot around here these days.
But I still came home with this.

Not surprising... 
because a long long time ago I was a berry picker one summer.
I'm pretty much a professional.
Just saying.

That and I was child free for an hour.
Thanks K squared :)

So today we are gorging on strawberries... and I'm trying to figure out what to do with them...

And playing play dough... partially clothed.
Thanks Lori :)

And I caught this little lady red handed... fists full... cheeks packed...
with her big brother's left over Annie's Bunny Graham snacks.

Guess what... they're dairy free :)

Monday, June 27, 2011

just when you thought I was done with stripes...

Procrastination is the name of the game today.  I could be cleaning the kitchen, doing laundry, baking something, and accomplishing many many other productive things while the kids are napping.  But instead I am wasting away the precious naptime hours on Pinterest.  Pinterest... you may be thinking... what's that?  My friends, let me tell you-- Pinter-YES!  If you want to waste away the precious productive hours of your day to find totally inspiring pictures, recipes, and DIY ideas then you will request an invite immediately and start pinning away...  It is totally addicting... but oh so much fun.  Today I bring you a plethora of ways you could incorporate stripes into your home... all courtesy of Pinterest... of course.

Let's start with more striped curtains.  These ones are a bit more subtle than the ones I just made...

How about stripes on a throw pillow or two?  Check out the pink ones in this kitchen :)

How about a striped couch... if you're feeling a bit more daring.

I LOVE striped area rugs.  I think they look amazing... however, they can be pretty pricey.  I found the one in Caleb's room for $15 at Ikea one day a few years back, but haven't seen them there since.  If anyone ever finds a great deal on striped area rugs... let me know! 

I would love to find a black and white one like this...

But I guess if you're on a really tight budget you could always paint stripes on your floor :)

Or on your ceiling...

Or the walls.  I love the striped walls in these nurseries.  If you don't know what to put up on the walls... just add some stripes!

And how about this entryway...

And there you have it... the best stripes in all of Pinterest-land.  The links to all of these images came from here.  Should you decide to take the plunge and join Pinterest... feel free to follow me... you should do it... I know you want to.

Anyone else out there like stripes as much as I do?  Are you bold enough to paint them on your walls... or do you like your stripes in small doses on a throw pillow?  Do share!!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Stripes and other fun

Ever so slowly I'm putting up curtains in this house.  The curtains that came with the house quickly became drop cloths when we began to paint.  For the past few years I've had empty curtain rods up all over the house.  As you will recall, I made some roman shades for the kitchen and bathroom windows (I even did up a little old tutorial for you all).  More recently, I made some pinch pleated drapes for the office.  And well, since I'm on such a roll, I figured I should just keep going.  So over the weekend I made these...

A couple of months ago I was in Fabricland... child-free... glorious :)  And I found this striped fabric for... wait for it... $3.50 a yard!  Amazing deal... and who would have thought I'd find something I like at Fabricland?!  I knew it would make awesome curtains... so I snatched up a couple yards.  Instead of having the stripes run vertically, I decided to have them run horizontally because I like the look so much better.  This did require me to make a seam down the middle of each panel-- so I ended up lining the curtains so the seam would not be as noticeable.

I actually made the curtains for the window in the downstairs guest room (this is why they aren't hemmed)... but since the room is such a mess (let's just say it looks more like a storage locker than a guest room at the moment) and needs to be painted yet, I decided to hang my new curtains in our bedroom upstairs so that I could enjoy them for a while :)  They look okay in our room... but the cream stripes are a bit too creamy against the white bedding.  One day they'll be moved downstairs... but they work upstairs for the time being!

Blue and green... I'm slowly adding color to the rooms upstairs!!

I love the reflection of the curtains in the mirror Doug made for the other side of the room...

And here's a picture for my Dad.  While I'm sure he's excited about my new curtains... let's be honest, the real reason he reads my blog is to see pictures of the grandkids :)  So here's a cute picture of my little lady when she woke up from her afternoon nap.  She may look cute and sweet in this picture...

...but she's actually filling her pants.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Pick your favorite color... round 2.

So if a game is fun the first time... it's gotta be fun the second time around, right?  When I was trying to decide on the color to paint my (now green) side table I posted a few inspiration photos of furniture painted in fun colors-- it was fun to hear everyone's favorite picks!  So... let's play it again, shall we?

Loving this sunshine yellow... I am quite possibly attracted to sunshine yellow more these days due to the fact that the sun seems to have disappeared around here...

This green looks a lot like the one I chose... I must be cooler than I thought :)

this one's fun... it reminds me of an orange creamsicle.  Wouldn't this be so cute in a baby boy's nursery?

This is probably the most perfect shade of grey to paint a piece of furniture.  I love the grey/yellow combo and I love this dresser.  If it were mine, it would always looks this perfectly staged... right :)

Wowzers.  This one's bright, but I like it.  I like it alot.

Alrighty... so the next few painted items are not dressers or side tables... I know.  But they are still awesome.  I love this console table.  How great is that color?  No joke, I saw a table EXACTLY like this one at MCC about a week ago for like $10 bucks.  Somebody needs to buy it and paint it like this one...

How amazing does this look?  If my outdated kitchen cabinets were paintable, I would seriously consider doing something like this (until Doug would find out... don't think he'd go for it).  Guaranteed, your house would be the only one on the block with kitchen cabinets like this.

These chairs are so great.  But then again, pretty much anything would look great in this kitchen.

Now, I know you're all thinking... this game is fun Elissa... really fun, but why are we doing it again?  Well, I found another table at a thrift store the other day.  It is the perfect side table for the downstairs family room.  It looks alright as is... but I think it will look even better painted.

Now I just gotta decide what color!
So... which would you choose?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

It was time...

... for another project.

Last weekend-- or maybe it was the weekend before-- Doug and I were sitting around with nothing to do.  I came up with a spur of the moment, totally free, make work project for us (actually Doug, not "us") ... creating floating shelves in the bathroom.  I've hinted at it before but I'll say it now-- any projects that require any amount of specialized skill are executed by Doug!  I'm the creative brain who dreams all these crazy things up... Doug is left to figure out how to do it!

So after I shared my vision with him, Doug sprang into action.  He pulled out some scraps of plywood and MDF and turned on the table saw.  In about an hour or two he had the 2 shelves in place.  Here's how he did it:

1.  Created a frame with scraps of plywood-- screwed into the wall... making sure it's level, of course.

2.  Pinned a top and bottom piece onto the frame-- these are capped off by a front piece with mitered corners to give it a more seamless look.

3.  Once the nail holes were filled, sanded and the edges were caulked, I needed to convince someone to paint it for me.  Thankfully I had a very willing helper...

And done.  The shelves are for pretty things right now... but in the future they will give me some added storage for towels and baskets full of other things you need in a bathroom.

One day I will renovate my bathroom... but for now... the shelves and the roman shade pretty it up enough for me.

Oh, and the total cost of this project?

Monday, June 20, 2011

It was a happy Father's day...

Step one... Preparation.

I was a bit late on Father's day prep this year... with a week full of sick kids I didn't get out of the house very often.  But after putting Emerson to bed on Saturday night, Caleb and I "snuck" out of the house to do a bit of last minute shopping.  We went to Home Depot and Rona to find the perfect gift (only to discover that it was out of stock) but ended up at Walmart to pick up a few supplies for Sunday morning.  While we were out, Caleb and I came up with a plan... we decided to make Breakfast for Daddy, bought him a mini-gift until the real gift was back in stock (Caleb picked it out-- Cheetos and blue Gatorade-- he was CONVINCED that Daddy would love it) and picked up some card making supplies.  We also came to an agreement on our Sunday morning wake up time-- Caleb first suggested that we get up at 4:44 am. I nixed that one pretty quickly but readily agreed to his second suggestion-- 7:48 am.  Much better.  I worked him into such an excited frenzy over Father's day while we were shopping-- he could hardly contain himself.  He was SO excited.  Although at one point he did ask, "Mommy, when is it going to be happy Caleb's day?"  I told him that every day is happy Caleb's day-- but that we would have a special day for him on his birthday.
When we got home that night he was pretty pumped to keep our plans a big secret.  Upon entry back into the house he quickly told Doug that the only place we went to was to the movie store-- For two hours-- and he scurried away to his room to hid the bags of supplies from Doug.  Somehow I managed to convince him that hiding the bacon in the fridge was still a reasonable hiding place.

Step Two... Execution.

Father's Day morning... the previously agreed upon wake up time was forgotten.  Caleb was at my side of the bed just after 5 trying to get the party started.  I sent him back to bed... but there were many more sleep interruptions to come.  Finally I told him to drag the bags of groceries and other items out of the closet, I dragged myself out of bed, and the kids and I got to work in the kitchen.
Emerson was more of an onlooker when it came to making pancakes and frying bacon.  She happily munched on cheerios.  Caleb was more than willing to help her.  The help wasn't wanted.  I may or may not have threatened with a time out more than once.

But Caleb was very excited to help with making the pancakes.  Gotta love the just rolled out of bed morning hair.  Cute on a three year old boy.  Not so cute on a sleep deprived Mama.... hence the lack of pictures of me.

Caleb also made Doug a card.  He came up with his own unique message: "I love you Daddy.  Can you take me to Castle Fun Park and Swimming?"  He also wrote it himself.  The word "swimming" took up the entire back page.  The letters were also in no particular order and all faced different directions.  You might say that they were "swimming" around the page.

Time to serve breakfast.  We decided that we were going to serve Daddy breakfast in bed.  It was a little bit scary getting both kids and the tray (Caleb insisted on carrying) into our bedroom but somehow we managed to make it there with no spills and minimal tears.

Caleb was pretty pumped to eat his syrupy pancakes and bacon in my bed.  I tried not to look.

I may or may not have found crunchy bits of bacon under my pillow on Sunday night.  Should have washed the sheets...

And Eme really had no clue what we were doing.  She didn't really care.  She was pretty pumped about her glow worm.

And that was how we celebrated Father's day!
We've sure got one great Daddy in this house :)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Feeling Green

Remember a looong time ago when I showed you this side table that I wanted to paint?  And I showed you a few of my not-white inspiration photos?  Well, I finally chose the color and finally finished painting the table.  And here it is today!  Not bad for a $15 thrift store find!

After much consideration I decided to go for pink.  What?!  Long story short.... I went to home depot with the intention of purchasing hot pink paint (and as Caleb would say: "it only LOOKS hot but it FEEL cold... right Mom?") but once I got there and started to look at the samples I changed my mind.  Why, you might ask?  Well, all the pink's I liked required a clear or deep base-- which would mean many many many coats of paint to get the desired shade.  So I decided to look for green, and decided on Green Energy (UL210-17... whatever that means) by Behr.  After primer, a couple of coats of the green and some Polycrylic for a more durable finish... I was done!  This is the first time I've used a protective top coat after painting... but now that you can't buy oil paint anymore, a top coat is definitely needed.  I'm hoping the finish will be as durable as oil paint, but I guess time will tell!!

Anyhow, I LOVE the green.  Doug loves the color too.  It's a bit of a bold choice, but the green looks fabulous in our room, it also looks amazing in Caleb's room and Emerson's too!  This is helpful-- since I'm constantly moving things around in our house.  And one day I will probably paint it again... but not for a long time :)

For those of you who are a bit squeamish about kid stuff-- stop reading now.

Let me fill you in on all the gory details of the week.

So as you may recall, Caleb's head isn't looking so hot these days.  He recovered quite quickly from his accident (the incident definitely hasn't stopped him from running around the house at breakneck speeds and crashing into walls head first) but two days ago he succumbed to the flu.  Of course I only realized he was sick after barf fest 2011 took place in my living room.  Let me tell you, I haven't seen or smelled something that terrible in a long time.  This resulted in the rental of a steam cleaner and Doug and I have spent the past 48 hours steam cleaning every carpeted/upholstered surface in our house.  And the car.  And Doug's mom also steam cleaned the carpets in her house.  Gotta get your moneys worth, right?

Then to top it all off, Caleb awoke this morning with a nose bleed of epic proportions.  Poor kid-- head injury, flu, nose bleeds, many many sleepless nights. yuck.

But today he must have been feeling better because I turned my back for 2 minutes and he colored all over his pants with marker.  Great.  Thank goodness for washable markers.  And with the amount of laundry I've been doing these days, I didn't even flinch.

And my little Eme bear.  After several days of being little miss grouchy pants the tooth fully emerged and my happy little girl returned.  Thank you for all of your teething advice... it will come in handy when the next tooth decides to make it's appearance.  This week Emerson has a cold... and still has grouchy days here and there, but nothing like last week!

I turn around for 2 seconds and my daughter starts eating grass.  I do feed her... really I do.

Okay, that's it!
the end.