Category: family

Happy Birthday Bear!

Happy 1st birthday to my sweet little boy!
I’m so thankful that you made me a mama one year ago. 
You are the light of my life and am grateful for you every day.  
I’m so excited to see what the future holds for you.
We pray every day that God will mold us into the parents He wants us to be so that we can model His love for you.  We pray that you will be healthy and strong and a man after God’s own heart.  

Summer Mantle and a Cheap Giant Photo

I love to change up my fireplace mantle, but I don’t like to spend money.  I have to look at it constantly, so I want it to be something I enjoy.  Often I repurpose items from around the house.  I used one of my Meme’s vintage blue mason jars to hold up 3 fun pinwheels I found on clearance at Hobby Lobby last year.  I also used 3 red candles from around the house for the other side.  The giant photo in the middle is my masterpiece.  I saw a great post on Pinterest about blowing up photos for under $5 and decided to put it to the test.  I edited my photo by adding text, then took the file to Kinko’s on a thumb drive.  I asked them to blow it up to a 2×3 engineer’s print.  It cost $3.  Total.  The quality is not the same as when you pay for a more expensive print, but I love the look of it and the fact that I can change it out at will.    

My husband cut out a piece of foam insulation to fit the print, and I painted the edges aqua to match other accents in my living room and disguise the ugly foam insulation.  I mounted the print using spray adhesive.  Easy.

Have you tried the giant print trick yet?
I made 2 others; one for Jed’s classroom and one for the 
ugly mirrored closet doors in The Bear’s room.  
So fun and so frugal.  Go for it!
I love linking my ideas at these blog parties.  Click the links to check them out and find crafty inspiration.  If you’ve never visited a blog party, you will be blown away by the creativity shared and imaginative ideas.  
Monday: CraftOManiacMad in CraftsIt’s So Very CheriSew ChattyThe Girl CreativeKeeping It SimpleC.R.A.F.T.Boogie Board Cottage, and Sumo’s Sweet Stuff   
Tuesday: Raising 4 PrincessesThe Kurtz CornerHope StudiosToday’s Creative BlogCoastal Charm, and New Nostalgia 
Wednesday: The Trendy TreehousePolka Dots on ParadeLil Luna, and The Thrifty Home
Thursday: Somewhat SimpleTales from BloggeritavilleThe Shabby Creek Cottage, and House of Hepworths
Friday: Sugar and SpiceKojo Designs, and The Shabby Nest
Weekends: Tatertots and Jello, Serenity Now, and Candace Creations 

Out the Door

The Bear is constantly on the move, crawling and pulling up wherever he can.  I know he will be walking in the blink of an eye.  How is my baby already 10 months old and so big?  I love every stage, but each assertion of independence is a little bit hard on my mommy heart.  He is already starting to fight his way out of my arms to get down and play.  Thankfully he still loves snuggling up to nurse and needs lots of sweet hugs throughout the day.  I just want to soak up every second because he will be grown and out the door long before I’m ready.  
What moments are you savoring this week?  


We are playing outside nonstop right now.  
The weather in Dallas is ridiculous this week and we find ourselves asking, “Is this spring?”  Dare we hope that winter has passed us by completely?  Spring is my favorite.  Spring brings the trees budding, flowers blooming, birds singing, the discipline of Lent, the joy of Easter, our anniversary, Jed & Fisher’s birthdays, dining on patios, and SO MUCH playing outside.  

Look at this big, almost 9 month old boy!  He is standing and cruising around the edges of furniture like a champ.  Neighbors of friends of ours gave us these Little Tikes playsets, and I know we are going to be playing like crazy all spring and summer.  Don’t you just love hand-me-downs?

Trying to Escape

The Bear is on the move.  
He has been scooting backwards since Christmas, but this week he started legitimately crawling.  Translation – He can go anywhere he wants.  We are terrified.  Here he is trying to escape through the screen door (which is unbelievably dirty, btw).  Yikes.  Must babyproof ASAP.  And clean screen door.  And clean front door while I’m at it.  

Thankful Thursday – Valentine’s Edition

This week I’m thankful for:
fresh tulips from my love
a crawler(!) in my house
sick days
good naps for my little Bear
sunshine in February
screen doors letting in warm air (in February!)  
Chinese food delivery
front porch sitting
weekends with extended family
What are you thankful for this week?

My Mama

Today is my Mama’s birthday.  
I am so blessed to have her in my life.
She is my biggest fan,
prayer warrior,
and encourager.
She is a great listener,
wonderful grandmother,
and the perfect shopping buddy.  
I am so thankful she gave my grandmom the surprise of her life all those years ago and became a sweet Valentine’s gift for my grandparents.  My grandmother had 2 teenagers and thought she had hit menopause.  Surprise, a baby was on the way.  What a gift she was to them and to all of her children, and of course to my Daddy.  Thanks for loving us all so well, Mama.  Happy birthday.    

Make It Happen – A Family Photo Shoot

A big family photo shoot is one of those things that I’ve wanted to do for a while, but is nearly impossible to actually make happen.  Obstacles were stacked against me.  My family is large and spread out, four siblings, 3 spouses, 3 states, 4 cities.  We hadn’t posed all together in any organized fashion since before Chris left for Afghanistan and any of us were married.  It was time.  Over Christmas break there was a 12 hour window when we were all in the same place at the same time, so it was go time.  As the oldest kid and natural born bossypants, I basically forced everyone into it, but most thanked me later.  Just kidding, but maybe they will someday.  I told everyone to wear any shade of grey, white, black, or red, and put a brush through their hair. Somehow my daddy managed to sneak in a baseball cap, but you can’t win ’em all.  We called our friends the Filipeks and had them send down a photographer or two.  We had three cameras going to get lots of pics.  I marched the group down the street to the other side of the lake behind my parents’ house for a scenic backdrop.  It was like herding cats.  Finally we got to posing, and the results are pretty great.  
 Nice and normal, grouped close together.
 Each little family group separate, looking at each other.
 You’re a tiger! Roar!
Big thanks to the Filipek family for snapping our pics.
The silly ones are probably my favorites.  After the group shots we took a couple of the grandkids with Dede and Poppy.  My goal was to get these printed on canvas for my mama’s birthday, which is today.  Over the weekend we sat down and edited them using Picnik and ordered a few canvas prints.  I can’t wait to see the results.  All in all it was totally worth the hassle and cat herding to get pictures we will treasure for years to come.  
What tasks are on your “Make It Happen” list this year?