Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Oh Thrifting! How I Adore Thee!

Check out my cute Eiffel Tower lamp I got at Goodwill:

I love it. I had the shade in storage.

Kennedy's Debut

This week Kennedy is participating in her first drama production. I am so excited for her! Each year a local drama group comes to the elementary school to help the kids put on a show. (For 5th grade, Kennedy attend the other elementary school in our district, so this is the first time she's had the opportunity to participate.) This year's show is Aladdin. (I think the kids were all a little surprised that the story is a leeeetle bit different from the Disney version.) It's a pretty interesting approach. The Prairie Fire Children's Theater group comes, they meet on Monday to do try-outs and assign parts and begin practice, they practice Tues, Wed, Thurs, have dress rehearsal on Fri followed by opening night on Friday night and a second show on Saturday afternoon. It's pretty intense. They stay after school, have a snack, practice for 2 hours, have a light dinner, and then practice for two more hours. Kennedy was pretty disappointed in the part she got, "just" a chorus part, but I'm really excited for her. I keep trying to tell her how much fun it will be to perform for an audience, regardless of what part she's playing. It's such a rush. So I hope I will be able to get some pictures. Flash photography is not allowed and our videocamera is broken, so we shall see.

Behind Every Great Man Is A Lucky Woman...

Lincoln recently had to travel to Maryland for work. It was only for one night, leaving Sunday and returning late Monday night, but I hate Monday mornings. It's never easy to get the kids moving for school at the end of the weekend. So I was dreading the whole thing, and missing my husband. Imagine my delight when the doorbell rang mid morning on Monday and a gentleman was standing at my door with these:

It was so nice to know my sweet husband was thinking of me and wanted to brighten my day even while he was away.

Thank you,sweetie!

Good Morning Starshine! The Earth Says "Hello!"

When I went into Kennedy's room this morning to get her up for school, I discovered that Jesse had snuck in there at some point and his loving sister was using him for a pillow!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Oh What A Beautiful Morning...

This morning started out like every morning has for the last several days: foggy. I'm talkin' seriously dense fog. The kind of fog that clings to everything and leaves behind a thick hairy frost on everything. (Is that what hoarfrost is?)

Every morning I've thought I should go out and take some pictures before it melts/blows off, but I hadn't gotten around to it. This morning, by the time I was ready to leave for the gym, the sun was shining brightly through the fog.

It had not successfully burned it off yet, but was doing its best. It was absoutely breathtaking. I grabbed my camera so I could snap a few pictures along the drive to the gym.

(My apologies that there is a little squiggle on the pictures. Apparently there is a scratch on the lens of my camera.)

There were these bands of fog.

I couldn't get a good picture of the most beautiful one. There were too many houses in the way. I was at the top of a hill. There was a band of fog in the valley between my vantage point and the crest of the next hill. In the valley was a grove of trees. The sky and air were crystal clear from the top 1/5 of the trees up. The air was also clear at the bottom fifth. But the section in between was shrouded in fog, making the treetops appear as if hovering in the air.

This is the spot, though you can't get the full effect. I had dropped down the hill a bit here, so the perspective is different. And the spot I really was mesmerized by was to the right in the picture, behind the houses.

Trees in the fog:

And best of all, when I came out of the gym, the sun on my face was actually quite warm. Warm enough that the interior of my car was warm as well. Sweet heaven. I needed this.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

It Feels Like January Or Something...

I am tired, discouraged, and unmotivated. I clean my house and it is immediately trashed upon the kids' arrival home. I finally got back to the gym, then Jesse threw up yesterday and Devon is threatening to today and so no workout again. But sadly I'm still feeling the muscle soreness from Tuesday's class anyway. I'm ridiculously tired and I feel like my brain needs to be mucked out. Every day feels very much like the last. There is nothing to anticipate, just day to day grind. I get this every January, i suppose. I think next year for Christmas I want my husband to whisk me away to somewhere beachy and sun-drenched in January. To take a week and run away together. To lay around with no responsibilities, just talking to each other or basking in comfortable silence. I'm desperate for sun on my skin and a good massage.
But January continues, like it or not. I'll do what I usually do- I'll find another project to work on around the house, sneak in an afternoon nap, endure. And soon the blahs will go away. The sun will begin to shed some warmth. All will be well in my world.

Darn January.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Christmas 2009

We spent a lovely Christmas here in our home. It was quiet, low-key, low-stress, and just generally pleasant. We did our usual Christmas Eve goodies,

followed by opening our Christmas Eve jammies,

reading the scriptural account of Christ's birth, singing Christmas hymns, hanging our stockings,

and waiting for Santa to come.

Mom and Dad always get to stay up a little later to watch White Christmas.

My two big projects this year were a vanity for Kennedy:(These are copied from my other blog. Nothing new if you've already read these posts there.)

Kennedy is becoming quite the young lady these days. She is beginning to catch on to how to put together a cute outfit, desiring to shower often, taking good care of her skin. We also knew we would be taking her to get her ears pierced (again- the first try didn't take) for Christmas. So I thought it would be nice to give her a vanity for Christmas. Of course, a vanity can be a bit pricey. Even a used one. I started scouring Craig's List adds for an old vanity or desk that I could repurpose as a vanity. Not having much luck, I decided to try Goodwill. There I scored this old desk- the PERFECT specimen for making over into a vanity- for only $14.99.

I loved that the top would open to expose a dropped area, the perfect height for setting all the lotions and potions a woman- or young lady- needs as she's gussying up. What I didn't like was that the surface tucked down in at an angle for storage, then, after opening the top, you could slide it out, tilt it up, and slide it back in flat. In that position, the surface stuck out a few inches. I cut it down so it would rest flush with the front of the vanity, with the intention that it would never be stored down at an angle. I wanted her to be able to keep things stored in there. With the dropped surface flush with the front, I also had to trim some of the height off the front flap of the lid so it could rest on the newly trimmed dropped surface. I think it looks really cute with the scrapbook paper I mod podged to the surface exposed. I also removed the lower, center-back panel of the desk so it would have a lighter, airier look to it.

I purchased a new, but very cheap mirror at Walmart that is the perfect size for the inside of lid. I adhered it with liquid nails. I kept the old hardware and didn't paint it or anything. I like the look of it with the dark border of the mirror and the dark tones of the scrapbook paper.

I also mod-podged the pull-out writing surfaces with scrapbook paper and photos.

I lined the drawers with cute wrapping paper that, you guessed it, I mod-podged into place. (The book was another Christmas gift from us- also appropriate to the theme. It's actually a pretty cute book with some very useful information for any girl on the brink of Young Womanhood. You may also notice a tin with a K on it in the front of the drawer. That is homemade chapstick I made at a church craft day. This being the Mod Podge Christmas, I made a cute label for it, adhered with mod podge. The flower hair clips were also a handmade gift that I did at the same craft day.)

Kennedy loves her gift, and I couldn't be happier about how it turned out.
And a dollhouse bookshelf for Renie:
I've loved these cute dollhouse bookshelves at Pottery Barn for a long time.

I've not loved the $400 + price tag. (They have taller ones for about $800)

But one day as I was sighing over the picture in the catalog, it struck me. I could totally make one of those things! Then I smartened up and I thought, "No! I can just buy a used bookshelf and with a few modifications, repurpose it into one of those things!"

So I bought this for $5 on Craig's List. It is incredibly solid and sound, and the perfect height.

I cut out some windows and doors, painted it, added a floor to, well, the floor, to cover the hole, added some trim, covered the back wall with beadboard to cover up some cracks in the wood, and added a roof and Voila! A dollhouse bookshelf. I stuck with basic stained wood trim so the piece can grow with her and match any room without needing another paint job.

She loves it and I have to admit, I think it's pretty fun too. The kids' only complaint is that Barbies can't stand in it. But it works well for Loving Family dolls, my original intention, and even Polly Pockets. And Barbies manage to squeeze in as well.