Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Real Life

Welcome to Real Life.... with a 2 year old.

So recently my husband and I bought a closet system for a wall in our bedroom. Partially due to the fact that we need to sell our house - eventually. Our bedroom only has one closet - keep in mind we have an old house. Doing that finally freed up a closet in my daughter's bedroom - she's only two, but has been in there a few months and I didn't like the idea of her growing up with her dad using the closet in her room when he gets dressed. She uses an old entertainment center I turned into her clothes space when she was a baby and we used it in our room when she was still in there. She's since moved out, but we continued to use her clothes center until we could get my hubby's closet moved out of there.

Photos of painting her room:


This strip of wall was painted a good two weeks before I really decided to stick with the color. 


Before the color was blue and we used it as a sewing room / guest room. 


Before.


After. 


Hubby couldn't keep up with me in Menards when I was walking so fast!


He's so funny! He does the best trim work, though. 


13+ years of marriage (just recently celebrated 14 years)


Almost done.

Turned out nice. 


I love it! It's a warm gray color, so it could be gender neutral. 


Added some purple curtains, some LED Edison light bulbs and a purple bedspread and it's all girl! 


Artwork for the wall - from words from Simply Said, metal sheet and frame from Hobby Lobby. 

I was working on getting the few things he had left out of the closet - some college notebooks with old college papers and notes in them - ha! Didn't know I had those. I thought the children were being well-behaved on the lower level - they were supposed to be emptying the dishwasher (but they got distracted), then they had a snack complete with peanut butter and Nutella and bread.

They moved into the playroom - which I had just cleaned up the night before - when I was in the closet and heard 'wahh.... ahhh... owww' That can't be good. My oldest comes up and says his sister (the 2 year old) hit him in the head with a train accessory. Keep in mind we have a whole rubbermaid tub full of wooden train tracks, accessories and trains. At least he was honest and told me he hit her back. She came up crying and told her 'buppy' hit her hand. She's two, but she can still get her point across, even if all the words aren't there.

I needed a break - and some coffee- and I brought down a load of laundry.
Meanwhile the rocking horse is in the living room (where the TV is), the dishes are still not put away and the train tub literally looks like it threw up in the toy room.


Welcome to real life, with kids.
One step forward, two steps back.
I question myself everyday how I'm going to make this house presentable to potential buyers.

And so I trudge along, getting ready for visitors for RAGBRAI, trying to keep the house clean, while still keeping the children happy. I was able to keep it clean for a few days in a row last week - but that's because either the kids were at the baby-sitter or we weren't here and we had gone to the zoo last Monday as a family.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Friday, February 26, 2016

First Hair Cut

First Hair Cut!
Although a lot of hair wasn't taken off, it was important to take photos.


We were visiting my parents in Florida, and hubby found a great kid themed salon in Fort Myers.


Checking out the toys before the cut.


Photo shot of the salon, they had several cars, a pink jeep and regular hair cutting chairs.


This is Barbara.


She did super, my daughter wouldn't hold still. 


Finally calmed down.


So much to look at!


Serious face.


It's tough to be this cute.


The other little boy got a sucker.


Suckers, the key to happiness.


Getting a little trim.


Back to the toys.


Must be a good sucker!


I asked her to smile. 


They even gave me a certificate and the first clipping of hair that was cut.


Now she's stylin'


Thank you, Barbara! 



Saturday, February 13, 2016

Flash time

I got a new digital camera - a Nikon 3200, if you are interested. I saved up money and bought it from a friend of a friend. It came with an external flash. So I just had fun changing the angle of the flash and location of where I was shooting from to get the look I wanted. It's more a flash study.

Flash straight at the subject, a little glare on the photos, not the look I was going for.

Flash was still pointed at the subject.


Here's where I figured out I could point the flash toward the ceiling, without removing it from the camera! Sweet deal! 



Changing my location, but kept the flash pointed to the ceiling.


Changing the angle of the flash. 


Changing the angle of the flash. 



Still not the look I was going for. 


Almost there....


This is the shot. This was the look I wanted, not to much glare, I'm watching my shadows and they are soft, not hard. With a little cropping, this would be a pretty good shot. 


One more flash, bounced off the ceiling - just for fun. 

I took a photography class or two in college, but that's been 10+ years, so this is a good study for me. 
The subject is something I created a while back. 

I took some lids from some boxes I had laying around, some scrapbook paper - two 10x10 sheets for each lid, some ribbon, and cut out my own letters. Piecing it together with some good glue - and being patient while it all dried was the hardest part. Although it looks like I used a lot of ribbon, I actually didn't. The band around each box is just that, a band, and the ribbon that's used to hang each letter is the same way. I think I used up all of this kind of ribbon I had in the house, though. 
I saw this idea on Pinterest a few years ago. This was actually one of the few projects that I've taken off that site and not been total flops. (It happens to everyone.) 

We went to Target and bought a curtain rod- I'm sad about this now, because ours recently closed. I haven't lived in a community without a Target nearby (within 10 min. of my house) since I was in high school! 

 Hubby put the rod where I wanted it and I put the letters through. It came out great! It's something I enjoy looking at along with our family photos below, and it reminds me that I love to be creative! 

Friday, February 5, 2016

Spy Party


When I asked my son what kind of birthday party he wanted, he said 'Spy Party.' Maybe I need to stop asking these loaded questions. But this year, I was up for the challenge - at least for one more year. He might have to forego the 'theme' birthday party next year for a day out with dad - which I'm perfectly okay with. 

I loved making the banner - and using red curling ribbon to go through the banner made it look like a laser beam was going through the banner. Almost. It's a concept. 

Entering the room the kids had to have their identity checked by an app my hubby put on his Android tablet. Fingerprint Lock Scan to see if they were accepted and Criminal Records Check to make sure they weren't already criminals (they all were). But maybe that's what we were looking for. 
They all got badges and had to print their name on them. 


They all started out with their notebooks I made them - just a little bit of paper, colored card stock and staples and they can re-use it once the party is over. 
So the mystery of the spy party was finding the party gift bags. They had to use their decoder to solve the message - this was tricky for some, but some of them figured it out pretty quickly and moved fast. I designed the decoder - if you want to use mine, just ask! 


How did this little boy turn 8 years old already? Wasn't he just 2? *sigh* 
That makes me feel old. 
The balloons were placed strategically around the building as 'bombs' I used both black balloons and gray. Tied together with black or red string make a perfect fuse! 



My bright idea was to have a laser maze the kids had to get through as one of their missions. I gave hubby the red yarn and he went to town turning this average Sunday School classroom into an awesome maze for the kids, complete with a tunnel formed by tables and chairs! 


First glimpse of the laser maze and someone said 'Wow, look at all that yarn!' 
Use your imaginations, guys! It's laser beams. Some of them would have been dead, if they had been real laser beams. Good thing it wasn't real. 


Cake made by hubby - I tend to get flustered when I make cakes last minute for something important as birthday parties. We found some strawberry cake mix on clearance at Target (ours was closing) and pink frosting. Yes, that's pink frosting with a whole lot of food coloring to make it look like metal. Hubby showed me the cake and he didn't realize he had a minor misspelt word. But the kids had to figure out what was wrong with the words - other than it was written backwards. 


The kids had 6 missions they had to get through to find all the answers. Some of them were get up and go missions - they had to count all the door knobs in the room, they had to identify close up pictures of spy gear - such as binoculars, cell phone, a flashlight, computer, a badge, and a gun
(I used an air soft gun we had).


Super spy guy making it through the maze. 


The bad guy the kids had to shoot with NERF guns as one of their missions. 


Super Spy guy had a fantastic party! 


NERF guns - we actually had enough for everyone,
thanks to my brother in law,
who didn't need them anymore! 


This young lady was a super spy and even came dressed all in black.


Inside the gift bags were sunglasses, handcuffs, fake mustaches, magnifying glasses. 
They were, of course in brown paper bags - what else to spies use for 'drop offs?' 
I've watched way to many spy shows. 


The biggest NERF gun of them all. 


Group shot - minus one who had to leave early.
I love all their facial expressions in this photo! 

View all the photos here: 
Spy Party 2016