February 26, 2015

our house tour :: dining room + kitchen

You may be wondering the same question that James asked me while I was snapping these photos: "Mom, why are you taking a bunch of pictures of the kitchen?" I mean, who cares anyway?
My answer was this: "One day, you or your sister or brother may want to know what our house looked like when you were a kid, so I want to document it on my blog."
I won't be offended if you do the same as he did at this point, which was go back to playing Legos.

Otherwise, I'll give ya the tour...

The mirror above the dining room table was a ten dollar Goodwill find. The paint was black and chipping, so I sprayed it with some basic silver paint from the craft store. I love the way it turned out.
The "give thanks" sign was something I had a vision for, and explained that vision to my mother-in-law. Since she is much better at follow-through on these sorts of projects, she made it for me, which was so great of her. I love it. And it is a good reminder to have hanging up in our home.
All the black frames (which are pretty much always crooked, as you can see here) are full of rotating pictures I have taken of the kids or scenery from some place special.
On the table are some little candle holders, flowers in a Fiesta wear pitcher, the cloth napkins we registered for 7.5 years ago at Crate and Barrel, and the Jesus Storybook Bible, which I attempt to read to the kids at breakfast each morning.

Hey, look! There's me! And you are getting a sneak peak of the living room tour!

I forgot to take a picture of the chalkboard in the dining room, but you can see it out of focus behind Judah in the picture below. It usually contains the weeks' dinner menu, James' Awanas verse, and a list of things I will never get done, like "ironing.... organize closet... deep clean entire home...."

So, let's talk about these cabinets. They started out a hideous-80's- wood color with no hardware. Then my amazing husband sanded them all down, sprayed them white, and put cute hardware on them. I love how bright they are now.
Above some of James' watercolors are hanging from twine.

The "Rise and Shine" sign is something I grabbed at World Market to cover the unbearably ugly tile that is behind it. Behind is a picture of a lobster in the middle of a bunch of seafood. Really?
The little floral spoon rest was a gift. It is officially the only thing I own from Anthropologie, but I still feel pretty hip using it. Ha.

Let's talk about the window sill for a minute, even though I didn't snap any good photos of it.
I love our kitchen window sill. Not because it is ugly wood, hard to clean, always dusty and full of clutter. It is because of what the clutter is made up of and the stories it tells. The clutter is in constant rotation, but currently includes: bottle parts (for Elle's babies, not mine), a wine cork, a photo of Lane and James that always makes me smile, a binky, essential oils, tee tree oil, bubbles, a Batman watch, rocks collected from who-knows-where, and a small rubber Pokey (as in, Gumby and Pokey the horse).

The "brew station" (below left) is not very cute, but very necessary for survival. It contains the coffee pot, aeropress and accessories, and jars of the miracle substance itself.
In the photo below right is a card I framed from my in-laws. I love what it says:
"Blessed are those who give without remembering and receive without forgetting"

Thanks for taking the tour! Up next will maybe be the living room or Elle's toddler room. 

Happy Thursday,

February 20, 2015

our valentine party

Due to recent illness, I just had a little Valentine's party for the kids this past Wednesday.

It was simple, but they had a blast. I threw all kinds of stickers, sparkly hearts, and valentine necklaces out on the table.


We invited our favorite triplets over (okay, the only triplets we know, but we sure love those gals!), and the kids played and played and played. Then they ate some snacks, including the above snack kabobs, which turned out pretty cute.

Then they played some more, and regrouped to decorate "Valentine crowns"

After playing some more, they managed to tear themselves away from jumping on James' mattress to decorate cookies.

And eat them, of course...

Happy Valentine's Day! (a week late)

one year ago: pictures of our crazy ice storm

February 18, 2015

judah's four month photo shoot shenanigans

This last week has pretty much been he... well, let's just say it hasn't been heaven.
Poor Elle developed pneumonia, I have some crud that seems to have turned into a massive sinus infection, and no one has been sleeping. At all.

Aren't you glad you chose to read this post? So uplifting! But, don't worry, it will get better...

I finally got around to taking Judah's four month photos. I took them in the morning, so he was still in his pj's. They happen to be Lane's old pj's, which is so fun. And I think that may count as vintage. What a hip baby.

Then James decided to join in the photo session...

... which started out so sweet.

But then...

...ack! I don't think I have ever been so terrified of my own child. So I asked him to make a "smile face"...

... really, James? Hilarious.

When I reviewed these photos it was late at night on the third night of no sleep. So the above picture made me laugh until I was wiping my eyes. And the picture below made me think of this line...

"Fold your dog's ear back!"

Name that show. (I'm still a bit loopy from the no sleep thing.)

Today I finally had a little Valentine's party for the kids. Pictures will be up by Easter. Please don't rush me.

Happy Wednesday!

PS one year ago: life lessons from applesauce

February 11, 2015

lately: not much

Spurred on by my mother-in-law sending me an adorable photo book of the last year of my blog (which made me cry), I have decided I need to do many more "lately" posts, in which I basically photo dump random pictures from around our house.

(I apologize for the run-on sentence.)

Life has been pretty much business as usual.

Lots of forts. Little sleep. Legos. Snacks. Plastic food in every corner of our house. Coffee. Gallons of coffee.

Clearly, we spend a lot of time at home in our pajamas.

Even though Judah is already four months, I still feel like we are in the "crunch time". The survival mode period. And that's okay. I'm not quite ready to have it all together. Or even to pretend like I do. I just want to soak up this time.

Happy Wednesday,

February 04, 2015

heaven gains an angel

The gal I am writing about here does not read my blog, nor do I think she is known by anyone who does. This post is not meant to exploit her situation, but just for me to remember this experience and how deeply it touched me. 

Yesterday evening I took a meal to a mom who had just given birth.

I have done this so many times, and each time the mom comes to the door, beaming, holding the baby for me to see.

But last night was different. This mother had no baby in her arms.

She invited me into her home, and as I placed the box full of enchiladas and muffins onto the counter she smiled at me and asked "How are you?"

What a perspective change this question gave me. How am I? Coming from this sweet mother who has just lost her precious baby after a few short days of life.
And what could I say? Should I complain about the silly, insignificant trials in my day? The cranky kids, the lack of sleep, the messes everywhere...

She told me her story. She showed me pictures of her dear little one for the brief time she had been in this world. We cried.

Her words were full of sadness, but also full of the Peace that transcends all understanding, and the Hope that only a Savior can give.

She is a brave, amazing woman. So strong and beautiful. And the Source is so evident: a beautiful, strong, amazing God.