Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Weston Turns 2

My nephew Weston celebrated his 2nd trip around the calendar on Sunday. Here are some pictures I thought the fam might enjoy:

Because Everyday's A Party

I have seen this type of fabric bunting on various internet sites and even in a few magazines lately. It looked so fun and festive I decided to make some myself. I think it will be nice to have on hand for future birthday parties and other festive gatherings. (We are actually having a small get-together at our house this weekend so that is the primary reason it is hanging up.) However, all festivities aside, I am enjoying just looking at it on a normal day. I might put it in the boy's room as a permanent decoration, or heck, I like it so much, I might just put it in my room!

(For those of you who are interested, the flags are made of quilter's cotton and measure nine inches at the base and nine inches tall, measuring from the center of the base to the point. I made them double-sided and then sandwiched them between quilt binding to make the garland.)

Monday, April 28, 2008

Spring Has Sprung

After what seemed like the longest, coldest and grayest winter of my life, spring has officially arrived! Since I complain so much about winter, I thought I should mention how delighted I am with all the beautiful weather we've been having. Hooray for sunny skies, green grass and warm temperatures. Hooray for Spring!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Difference in Reading Material

Tucked neatly in our bathroom magazine rack, you'll typically find the current issue of Real Simple magazine, a few home decor and clothing catalogs and several other books which include, but are not limited to: "Danger Stalks the Land: Alaskan Tales of Death and Survival" and most recently (the inspiration for this post), "The Book of Buckskinning II: A How To Guide for the Primitive Muzzle Loader."

Bet you can't guess what reading material belongs to me and what belongs to Jared? (Hint: I'm not planning to use buckskin for any sewing projects in the near future.)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Garden Taco Rice

I love this recipe. It has rightfully earned a special place on my blog because I enjoy it so much. It is a summer time staple at our house because it is yummy, easy to make and it's the best way to use up zucchini from the garden. Enjoy!

Garden Taco Rice
1 lb. ground beef or turkey
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 pkg. taco seasoning mix
1 1/2 cups water
1 1 /2 cups chopped zucchini
1 cup frozen corn (I use canned)
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
(If I want it spicier, I sometimes use diced tomatoes with green chiles.)
1 1/2 cups uncooked rice
4 oz. (1 cup) shredded cheese

In a large skillet, brown ground beef and onion; drain. Stir in remaining ingredients except rice and cheese; bring to a boil. Stir in rice. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 5-7 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is cooked, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Fluff mixture with a fork and sprinkle with cheese. Cover and let stand three minutes or until cheese is melted. Garnish with cilantro, cherry tomatoes or we especially like it with avocado.
(This recipe also tastes good served with sour cream, tortilla chips or when used as filling for burritos.)

Embroidery Hoops

I love this idea. Embroidery hoops used for a bulletin board display. Who would've thought? Click here for the how-to. OR you can purchase them here.

Decor8 via I Suwannee.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Bring Out the Best

Last year at about this time, I ate the perfect turkey sandwich while vacationing in Florida. The sandwich included delicious bread, turkey sliced fresh from the deli and Hellmann's Real Mayonnaise. Since that time, I have been trying to recreate my perfect turkey sandwich experience. I've purchased various brands of bread and various brands of deli turkey. To my dismay, all my perfect sandwich recreation attempts have been in vain. Figuring a huge part of the deliciousness of the sandwich was based around the mayonnaise (it was the full fatty kind and I normally buy light) I even purchased full fatty store brand mayo. Sadly, even with full fat mayonnaise, my creations just weren't living up to the dream sandwich I ate while on vacation. After sharing my disappointment with Jared, he suggested that perhaps the sandwich just tasted good because I was eating it at the beach and washing it down with a pina colada. He had a good point but I wasn't willing to give up just yet. And I'm glad I didn't because this week I broke down and purchased HELLMANN'S REAL Mayonnaise. Little did I know there is a HUGE difference between the store brand full fatty mayo and Hellmann's. I figured all brands of full fatty mayonnaise were created equal, right? WRONG! Hellmann's truly is THE BEST. At last! I found my perfect turkey sandwich! Who would have guessed it has nothing to do with the bread or the turkey but everything to do with Hellmann's full fatty, real mayonaise. I'm in heaven. Now I just need to find the perfect pina colada mix and a beach and I'm set.

Monday, April 21, 2008


Jared pressured me into getting a manicure. Okay, maybe there wasn't that much pressuring. He suggested it and first, I hesitated. He suggested it again and I gladly obliged. That was Saturday night. Only a few short hours after waking up Sunday morning my perfect French manicure looked like this:
Now I remember why I don't ever get my nails done. (Fancy nails + my life = unfancy nails real quick.) Oh well. I make myself feel better by thinking how awesome they must have looked while I was sleeping.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

I Sew!

My secret? I just let the sewing machine do all the work. Seriously, I have been wanting to learn how to sew an article of clothing for awhile and I finally did. To my surprise I made a shirt that actually fits! My 7th grade Home Ec teacher would be so proud. I think my relationship with my sewing machine just got a lot more serious.

(For those of you who are interested, I used a really easy Built by Wendy Simplicity pattern: #3835. I used fabric I bought on clearance at JoAnns and I made the flower embellishments out of left over scraps to make the shirt look a little more Anthropologie-esque.)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Joel Dewberry

I am definately inspired by great design in any form, including pretty fabric. Unfortunately there just aren't enough hours in the day to put that inspiration to work! (Hence the reason I store it all here with hopes it will be put to good use at some future date.) Anyway, here's a great find from Design Mom I thought I'd pass along to all you fabric lovers out there. It's an "eclectic modern" collection of fabrics by designer Joel Dewberry. So pretty.

Cool random fact: He graduated from my alma mater, Brigham Young University. (Go Cougs!)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Target Shoe Love

Just felt like sharing some shoe love from Man I love that store. (But then again, who doesn't?) Perhaps you're in the market for a new pair of sassy-looking shoes at a reasonable price? If so check these out here, here, here and here.)

Reading Nook

I think every house should have a lovely little reading corner like this. I love the orange rocking chair but I think I love the book shelf behind it even more.

Via Pottery Barn Kids.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Bathroom Before and After

It's done! The most important parts have been completed for awhile but I just recently got around to getting the finishing touches put together. These aren't the most recent BEFORE pictures. (The walls had since been a different color and we had a different shower curtain.) However, at least you have an idea of what the bathroom used to look like so you can compare.



Sink and Mirror Before:

Sink and Mirror After:

You can't see it in the before pictures but there used to be a wall and a closet to the right of the sink. (It's behind the door in the first picture.) Anyway, that is why the before pictures seem so much smaller. We took out the wall and the closet and it really opened the room up. If you are interested, see more details below.

Bathroom: The Details

Open shelving where the closet used to be:

Seagrass baskets and polka dot shelf liner (Target):
White waffle shower curtain (Target):
Built-in magazine rack, compliments of my handy husband. (I think this is my favorite part of the room!):Bath towels (Target):

Ta-da!:Also, I'm not sure how well you can see it in the pictures but the walls are painted a mild blue: a Sherwin Williams color called Tradewind. The sink base, floor tile and light fixture are all from Lowes. I'm glad it's done and I'm very pleased with the way it turned out!

Holly Doodle

I really like this artwork by Holly Hochhalter Johnson. Check out her Etsy shop, Holly Doodle, here:

Via Midwest Modern Girl.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Poor Mitch

To say he has had a rough week would be an understatement. It all started Tuesday afternoon when he fell getting out of Jared's van. His chin caught his fall which forced his two front teeth into his lower lip and one of his front teeth up into his gum slightly. (So one of his front teeth is halfway gone, not chipped but "intruded" back into his gum- ouch!) This was traumatic. Probably more so for Mitch because he was the one bleeding but I was still traumatized - especially because I felt his future dental wellness was on the line! However, Jared's older brother, a dentist, was able to talk me off the ledge. He reassured me that he would be fine, that the tooth could potentially come back down on it's own and that he probably didn't damage the permanent tooth behind it. Okay, I was feeling a little better until Wednesday morning. We decided to make a family trip to Wal-mart. (Of course. Because isn't that where all the white trashy parents take their battered children?) As soon as we walk in the door, Mitch trips, falls and hits his already bloodied and swollen mouth on the wheel of the shopping cart. It took all my will power to hold it together at this point. I thought for sure we were going to pick him up and he was going to start spitting out all his teeth. His mouth did start bleeding again but we were able to calm him down quickly. No more damage to his teeth but his lip is now EXTRA swollen. Mitch seems fine but I'm feeling more and more like a negligent parent and I'm also feeling paranoid, thinking the sweet old lady who greeted us is busy calling social services. I'm guessing at this point many of you are probably thinking about calling them too. (FYI: The sharing of similar experiences: "You'll never guess how my son got a black eye..." and/or a little stroking of my shrinking ego as a mother: "Kim, you're the greatest mom ever!" would certainly make appropriate comments, but no pressure.)
Here you can see his swollen face and partially intruded front tooth after the second fall:

So, while that's the end of the tooth drama (for now anyway) Mitch woke up Thursday with a cold that made his eyes very swollen and seeping fluid. It was a lovely addition to his fat lip and gimpy looking tooth. And as if that were not enough for one week, last night he woke up in the middle of the night with the stomach flu. He can't keep anything down. Since all his sheets and blankets are being washed, he just fell asleep on our living room floor:

Poor guy! Hopefully next week will start and end on a brighter note.

Yummy Recipe

The pictures might seem silly but I had some pretty good lighting going on in my kitchen the other night when I made this recipe. It is so easy (with only a few ingredients) but it is oh so good.

Thursday, April 10, 2008


Jared bought me this vintage globe to add to my budding collection. The best part? He paid $2.00 for it at a garage sale. Man, I love a great find and a good deal.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

What an Uncooperative Bunch!

A picture of my mom (aka Grandma Sue) on a recent visit with all her grandkids.

Left to Right: Morgan blinking, Weston running away, Spencer having rage, Mitch going for the truck on the shelf, Zyler sticking out his tongue and my mom seemingly enjoying every minute of it.

Luckily her children are more subdued than her grandchildren (well, at least in the picture):

Left to Right: Lindsay (oldest), Mom, Mitch (youngest), Me (#2), Alex (#4). (Unavailable for photo: Carl #3)

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Reunited and It Feels So Good

Just when nothing in this world seems to be going right, I discover The New Kids On the Block are reuniting and suddenly there's hope for the future. Read the entire article here.


I just discovered a new blog via's annual index of the Top 25 blogs. I just barely skimmed the article but this particular blog caught my eye. The article described it as follows: "It to small Venn Diagrams and bar graphs that graphically and (often hilariously) highlight life's profundities and absurdities." If you're like me, when you look at some of these graphs/diagrams you'll be nodding your head while thinking..."that's so true!" Here is a small sampling. If you want more, check it out here.

It's No Free Spirit...

but these Jorg & Olif Dutch bikes are pretty cool, pretty expensive and well...just plain pretty! (The fact that it was featured in a J.Crew catalog helps. They have a way of making everything look pretty.) So, if you are looking to invest some cash in a bike that looks classic but is actually nice and new, this may be the bike for you.

(Photo courtesy of J.Crew)

Monday, April 7, 2008

This Is Me

I found this fun little journal via Design Mom. What a great way to simultaneously encourage creativity and journal writing for a little youngster.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Globe Lights

I saw these globe lights and immediately started dreaming of a backyard summer soiree. Ahhh, summer. I wish it were warm and sunny and that these lights were hanging in my backyard.

Lights found on sk*rt.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Free Spirit

Check out the bike I just got from the Thrift Store. A three-speed "Free Spirit" with a bike license that expired in 1985. The price tag: $17.99. Jared talked them down to $9.99, of course. Considering it's age, it's in great shape. What a deal! I bought an old beat up one-speed at a garage sale for $5 last year but I ended up selling it for $20 a few weeks later. (You know, me and the whole I-can't-pass-up-a-chance-to-make-a-quick-profit bit.) But now I have a replacement! You can bet I'm going to be taking this bad boy off some pretty sweet jumps this summer. :)