Saturday, April 21, 2012

Urban Farmers

I guess that's what we should be called now. I haven't posted in a while because we have had a flurry of activity at our house. Mr. J has turned our backyard into an urban farm. I can't help but marvel at the talents God has given JC. When he came home one day and said he wanted to have chickens in the backyard I have to admit I was slightly concerned about his sanity. However, as this project has unfolded I am simply in awe of my husband. He took plans that he found on the internet and turned them into what I now refer to as the Chicken Mansion. God has truly gifted him and I have really enjoyed watching him use those gifts. Here's a little peek at what's been happening in our backyard:

This is what the chicks lived in for the first three weeks of life IN MY DINING ROOM!
Can you tell I was not very excited about their living situation?

JC started building...
... and building (the girls thought it was a stage)
Until, finally he had a finished product, complete with electrical wiring for lighting and a fan.

Belle has been so excited about this project.

Moving the chicks into their mansion.

I think she would sleep out here if we let her!
Rose prefers to watch them from afar.

The chicks checking out their new digs. It's been 4 days and they seem to be adjusting well.

So...although I was very resistant to the idea of chicks in my backyard, I have to admit JC did an awesome job putting it all together. (Did I mention I'm crazy about him?!) PLUS, we also have an aquaponics system he created (that's another post coming soon). I'm sure we will have plenty more stories and adventures to share! :)

aka Mama Hen

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Surprising Belle

One of my good friends from college moved to our area about 9 or 10 years ago. She has two adorable boys, one just a few months older than my sweet Belle. Isaiah and Belle have been friends since birth.

In fact, if you ask them, they plan to get married some day. I've been encouraging them to wait until college is finished at least :) Last summer this sweet family moved to NC and broke poor Belle's heart. She still writes Isaiah and hopes that he'll move back to this area someday. His mom called me a few weeks ago to say they'd be in town, and she wanted to get together for lunch. I decided to surprise Belle and didn't tell her they were coming. Her face was priceless!

I can't believe how much they've grown!
 Isaiah got to come over after lunch and play with the girls. I soon realized that some things never change! :)


...and now!

It was so much fun to surprise her! Who knows what God will do with those two one day! :)


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Spring Break Fever!

We've got it at our house! Not the sick kind of fever, but squeeze as much fun a 3 to 5 year old can handle fun into one week kinda fever :) We're halfway through our Spring Break, and the girls and I have been having a blast. Our mornings are my very favorite part of the day. Both girls snuggle up with me in my bed and we just talk and watch cartoon. Yes, I admit, I love the getting out of bed much later than usual, but the real reason I love this time is I know my girls will only be this small for a short time so I'm getting in every snuggle possible. I'm secretly hoping they'll still want to snuggle with their mom even when they're in college, but we'll see... Anyways, I just wanted to share some of the fun we've been having.

Monday we hit the spray park:

The girls had a blast! Belle insisted on wearing her "boo-kini"

Tuesday we stuck close to home. We did some spring cleaning, a little organization and transplanted some flowers to hang on the front porch.

Today, we went to the zoo with Pap and Mimi.

They made a new friend

Mimi got roped into riding the train :)

This is what I get when I ask everyone to smile for a picture.

This is what happens when Belle gets to be the photographer :)

Rose made lots of friends at the zoo.

Can't believe how fast my sweet Belle is growing up!

I look at my family and feel so blessed. The only way to make this week any better is if Daddy had the week off too. We definitely miss him, but the girls are getting to enjoy some Daddy-time everyday when he gets home. I love how their faces light up when he walks through the door :)


Sunday, March 11, 2012

Spring is in the Hair!

No, that was not a typo. At my house, Spring is in our hair :) The girls and I went yesterday for a hair cut. Rose got the most drastic cut (about 5 inches cut). I think they look adorable:

There's lots of activity in our house during this fun season. I happen to love spring. If for no other reason- we get SPRING BREAK! Yes, a wonderful week off in just two short weeks. I'm so looking forward to dusting off my sewing machine and having some fun while the girls and I are off school.

Mr. J has some big projects going as well. He is turning our backyard into a city farm. He is currently working on structure to support an aquaponics system. From my minimal understanding of its workings, we will have tanks of fish that fertilize plants and the plants in turn feed the fish. A great cycle that uses no soil to grow a garden full of veggies. The outcome should be great! PLUS, Mr. J has decided we need chickens. He is also building a chicken coop in the backyard. We'll have a yard full of veggies and eggs. Not something I was a big fan of at first, but I guess I am in for the adventure since the chickens will be arriving the first week in April. There will definitely be pictures as this adventure unfolds!

Happy Spring to all! :)


Sunday, February 26, 2012

I feel like all I do...

... is go to baby showers! I guess that's what happens when you work in a field full of ladies :) We had another baby shower this past week, but this one was a little different because the baby got to be there! He decided to surprise his mommy and come a little early so we missed having her original shower and had to reschedule. It's always fun to have a baby to pass around at a baby shower :) Add 20 teachers who all want to love on the baby at the same time, and you've got an interesting situation. I was smart, I waited until most had already had their turn and left, then I got to hold this precious bundle of joy:
Isn't he cute?! His name is Mason.

So... I've tried to have some variety in my baby shower gifting so I've been searching Pinterest and some of my favorite blogs for inspiration. Here's what I made Mason:
When I spoke with his mom a few weeks ago, she said he loves books so this is the cover of his "MASON" book.

Then I had to add one of my favorite go-to baby shower gifts- the taggie blanket. Mason's mom is a Packers fan.

I hope Mason enjoys the goodies I made him. He is too cute for words! I've got some more projects in the works this week. Plus, I'm taking on some challenges in the kitchen! (Pray for me. This is not a place I'm gifted in.) Hopefully they'll be some fun things to show, and I'm sure some stories to share!


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

The girls and I had a great time this year making their Valentines. I found a super cute idea on Pinterest (yes, I am addicted!) so I gathered all our old crayons around the house, bought a few extra boxes of crayons, found an ice tray heart mold in the Target dollar section and we made super cute crayon valentines. Want to make some your self? Here's what we did:
First, we soaked the crayons for at least an hour.
(I am so thankful one of my fellow dance moms gave me this advice. It makes the peeling process so much easier!!)

Then we peeled and peeled and peeled some more. Rose loved this part and was very good at it! :)

Then we divided the crayons into coordinating colors. This was Belle's favorite part :)

We baked them in a heart mold and a little gingerbread man mold for 15-20 minutes at 230 degrees.
If you try this be sure your crayons are fully melted and then let them cool completely before removing them from the mold.

We put these cute crayons in bags and labelled them "Valentine, you COLOR my world with happiness" and "Happy Valentine's Day for CRAYON out loud'. Yes, I know I'm a cheeseball!

These little guys were fun too!
Now the girls want a set of crayons for themselves so I see more crayon making in our future. It was a great project to do together!


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Tools for Baby

Belle's teacher is expecting a boy, and we had her baby shower this past week at school. Now up until this point, most of my baby shower creations have been girly to the core so I had to do some major searching for inspiration. My inspiration came from a newly discovered blog that has quickly become one of my favorites. Ironically, it's called Girl. Inspired. She had made an outfit for her son that included a shirt with a hammer applique. I wanted to think a little outside of the box on this one, and ended up inside a box- a toolbox to be exact. Here's how I packaged my gift:
I found a toolbox at Target and used scrapbook paper to make a tag that said "Tools for Baby Lee." Then, I filled the bottom of the tool box with diapers, wipes, baby soap and lotion. It looked like this:

Then came my favorite part of the whole project. I made these adorable onesies:

I used felt scraps and my ever present friend Heat n' Bond, stitched around the edge of each tool with my sewing machine, and we were in business! :) I loved packaging these in the toolbox.

I was so glad to discover I can do boy gifts! :) There's a few more boy baby showers in the near future.
I can't wait to have some more fun exploring and trying new things!