Tuesday, January 31, 2012

say click!

Ruby went to an all-out carnival themed birthday party on Saturday. They rented a popcorn machine and my friend wore a clown suit. Now that is dedication. :) It was awesome.
On Sunday morning, before Patrick hurt his back, I finally finished these little jammies I made for Nicky.  I made Jacob a pair for Christmas and now the boys can be twins at Uncle Thomas & Erin's wedding next month. 
I might need to sew a mini pair for the new little boy nugget in my sister's belly.  (IT'S A BOY!!!!!!!!!!)  :)  xoxoox
Nicky on a walk yesterday afternoon.
I also finally hemmed this calendar I ordered for my sister and myself from Spoonflower in December.  I love it and it's on my bedroom wall.
I found my new scarf in the holiday Cath Kidston catalog.  The colors are reversed on mine...mostly navy with red.  I saved a mere $61.75.  :)  What I love most about it is it's a very thin and lightweight non-scratchy wool. 
I had the best day.  It is gorgeous out.  We walked forever and I hung our bedding on the line.  I needed to use up some fridge stuff so I made a quiche, green smoothies, 2 loaves of zucchini bread, an apple galette (because I only have one pie pan. haha) and some bacon.  Tonight will be pancakes for dinner and tomorrow is grocery shopping day... 

...or maybe Thursday as Nicky and I might go to Toddler Time tomorrow morning.  A few months ago I said I'd rather die than go to Toddler Time again but here I am, with a toddler who really needs some time to run and play.  I would also love to connect with some other moms of littles that stay home in my town.  Our playgroup was such a huge part of our life when James and Ruby were small and I am suddenly missing that support system.  I'm grateful to still count those women as friends but we don't all hang out and let our kids play anymore...they are all in school!  I'd like some of that again, for myself and Nicky.

speaking of Nicky...he's up.  xoxo


I may or may not be avoiding this place but I may or may not be back.   We shall see how this "back in the saddle" post goes. 

I'm trying to get exercise back in on a regular basis (where it hasn't been since Christmas) and might be slightly bitter that there doesn't seem to be an easy way to do it.  I like to exercise in the morning (around 9am) but that's also when I normally blog but that's also when Nicky is all around me and I just don't know.  I feel like I need to get up early again to do it but am dragging my heels.  Luckily, I am exercising while dragging them.  Just not in the early morning hours and not as seriously as I'd like to be.  This week is about trying some things out.  Like, how does the boy respond to mama in the plank position, sweating.  Will he leave me alone or jump on my back?  I'd put my money on 2 but we will see.

I was also sick last week (a head cold) which I knew but didn't really realize until Saturday when I could finally relax and let myself feel crappy.  I took two naps on Saturday and felt better on Sunday.  Luckily so as Patrick threw his back out Sunday, mid-morning.  He stayed home from work yesterday (yay!  it was fun to have him here...we watched Moneyball.  Truly awesome movie.) and seems to be a little bit better.  I'm guessing he'll go in today but he's not up yet so I'm not sure.  oh.  He just got in the shower so he's going in.  I can't wait to see how he's feeling.  He sure was sweet to me last night.  happy sigh.

This is something I really like about Patrick:  I can tell him any old horrible thing I do or did or think and he doesn't judge me.  Like, at all.  He might tease me a little bit but I appreciate a good joke so that's alright with me.  I feel so fortunate.

Oh, I also asked him last weekend how much he thought I had spent at the thrift store this month.  His answer?  Twenty five bucks.  OH! how I laughed.  :)  My grand total was $206 and guess how much I made? So far, $215.00.  Woo hoo!  And I still have all that stuff for the sale in April and I brought two bags of women's clothes to a consignment shop yesterday.  A very good month, if I do say so myself.  I had fun shopping all month, had fun hanging out with my friend Heidi while shopping, and got TONS of stuff for myself and my family for not a dime out of pocket.  Well, wait.  My ebay fees were $15 so I guess I spent $6.  Pretty dang nice.  I wonder how Feb. will go???

Here's a partial list of what I thrifted for us in January, just in case you need proof (ahem.  mom.):

dress for Ruby for wedding
dress for me for wedding
jeans, shorts, shirt and heavy duty mittens for Patrick
3T columbia jacket for next year, nicky
fleeces for all 3 of my kids (lands end and old navy)
at least 6 summer shirts for me  (old navy, calvin klein, gap, banana republic, etc.)
4 summer dresses for me
2 summer pants for me
multiple shirts for ruby for now, summer and next year (like, at least 18)
pants, skirts and dresses for Ruby ( at least 2 of each)
jeans, shorts, swim trunks and tshirts for james (1 of each)
hoodie and shorts for nicky
art supplies
mini ironing board
lovely picture frame
ruby's desk and chair
hoodie for me
nwt cath kidston scarf for myself
cashmere scarf for brother in law
2 shirts for seester

Okay Nicky is up.  Have a good day, dear ones.


Thursday, January 26, 2012


I am so flipping crabby.  I haven't slept all week due to Nicky getting up a zillion times a night (his cold) and I've had appointments or babysitting or volunteering to do every day, including tomorrow. 

I am so glad tomorrow is Friday.  I hope your week has been better than mine!  :)


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

i whaley do

So.  Awesome weekend.  Friday was the usual thrifty heaven but made even better by being there with Heidi.  She shared all sorts of knowledge with me about re-selling clothes and we talked so much that 3 hours passed by in a blink.  My monthly total is at, wait for it, $175.  yikes!  However, I've made $148 so far on Ebay and Etsy in only 2 weeks.  And this weeks' auctions aren't even over for 2 more days so it could end up with me breaking even.  Also, a lot of my money spent so far (probably about $60+) is for clothes that are going to a consignment store and to a children's re-sale sale in April so I won't know for a while if getting those things is worth my time. 

On Saturday I took the big kids to meet friends at a fun play place and then out to dinner at Culver's.  I kind of ate 2 dinners because a while later I met my friend Susan for (cough) dinner and drinks at a brewery in Verona.  We listened to a local band that I really like and again, 3 hours passed by in a blur. 

Sunday was started with a crabby Patty (Patrick) but improved as the day went on.  He was being creepy again on Monday though, so I called him on it.  He was slightly bitter that he can't just go get whatever new car he wants but I showed him where all of our money goes and that seemed to help.  I want both of us to be involved in our finances this year, it's a big responsibility, so I hope we are off on the right foot.  He was very sweet last night and again this morning so hopefully he's over it.  I also told him that I had even told my sister I wanted him to go get the new car that he wanted...but that was when we were still assuming he'd be getting his usual bonus.  No bonus = smaller down payment, you know?  Sometimes it's hard to communicate with Patrick because it has to be done in 10 minute intervals, spread out over days, or he shuts down.  I am accustomed to this now but it becomes an issue when he is being icky about something that we haven't fully talked through yet because we can't talk longer than 10 minutes!  men.  I love them.  :)

Today has been a long, slow day.  I watched my friend's baby this morning and spent a lot of time reading and playing with Nicky.  He is still not feeling 100% so he's a bit needier than usual.  Great!  haha.  :)  I did set up all my "making" stuff on the kitchen counter (out of his reach) so when I could grab a few minutes I could play around a little.  (I am a messy crafter.  Are you?)

I went to Jo-Ann's yesterday and found 2 more packs of Martha washi tape on clearance for .97!  woo hoo!  I also got three little rolls of paper (also for .97) that I thought were colors I might use.

Here are some of the little things I came up with:  (as you can tell, I got kind of hung up on the whale stamp.  so cute!!)

I photocopied some vintage Clue cards to use:

 I think this will be cute for James.  He likes word-play jokes and things:

And, here is a cute picture of me and Nicky.  Not traditionally cute of me (morning face) but I really like it of me and him together:

His skin is soooooooo smooth.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

such hard decisions in life...should I use aqua glitter or brown?

My kids had the day off yesterday. The dynamics of the three of them together can be exhausting but we had a pretty good day.
James went to the library for some Mario Kart tournaments for a couple hours during Nicky's naptime so Ruby and I got to get our craft on.
I glittered my front door key!  It's so cute and I'm happy with it.  Found the idea from this blog via Pinterest.
I used some of my new Martha Stewart washi tape that I found at JoAnn's a few weeks ago.  The small green one is my favorite.  (I even shared with Ruby.  That was hard.)  :)
We made some little tags.  I love them.
I tried another Pinterest idea and made some glittery tape.  Lovely idea found here, originally.

See?  Sparkly.
I love collecting random inexpensive bits at thrift stores to use for crafting.  Here are some of the things we used today.  Typewriter paper is so awesome.  Too bad I don't have a typewriter anymore.   I think a craft date is in order, Teresa.  :)

Ruby had originally wanted to make beaded necklaces (again!) but I lured her over to my side with the paper puncher and glitter.  

It was a fun little break to the day.

I wanted to write more about my awesome weekend and ornery husband but Nicky is up.  He got a cold this weekend so I need to determine his snot level.  If it's not too bad, I volunteer in Ruby's room this morning.

Have a good day, dear ones.


Monday, January 23, 2012

ruby reads

Last night I read to Ruby from The Long Winter for quite a while.  Afterwards, she picked up the book and started looking for "star words" that she had learned at school.  Then she wanted me to point out words that she could try to sound out. We did this for over an hour.  She was doing so well and having so much fun.  We ended up making a list of all the words she could sound out and included some of the trickier ones like "of" and "off" so she could practice them.

I remember when James was learning to read I was so proud of him but didn't talk about it much because I didn't want to seem like I was bragging.  I now know that nearly *all* kids start reading in kindy (or before!) and it's not much to brag about.  :)  It is, however, something to be celebrated.  I love that she is learning but even more I love seeing her try so hard without having a frustrated meltdown.

Could it be?  Is she growing up?

I love it.


Thursday, January 19, 2012

the bird

Here is a late hello on this chilly Thursday afternoon.

We were all excited to watch my dad sell two of his amazing cars at Barrett Jackson last night.  One of them went for $46k and the other for $58k...pretty impressive!!  It's always so much fun to see and last night we had a family betting pool going so that was fun, too.  The kids stayed up late to see Grandpa (even though we only saw a glimpse of him) and eat chocolate pie.  They were happy.

The other day after I posted about using up all that food in my fridge, I found 3 nearly turned avocados in my crisper.  sigh.  After some googling I found and made some chocomole and served it to the kids after school.  All 3 of them loved it and James has been asking for more ever since.  I made him good old jello instant pudding last night (to fill the pie, mixed it with coconut milk) and he couldn't tell the difference.  :)  Try it, you might like it.

I will probably never write out the full story about Ruby from last Saturday night so here it is in a nutshell:  she gave Patrick the finger.  (yes, that finger and no, she didn't learn it from us!)  I have to give her some credit (here, not to her, of course) as the act, however naughty it was, was delivered with perfect timing and a perfectly straight face.  She looked rather put out as she gave her father the bird and Patrick and I looked at each other in total disbelief.  He acted swiftly and severely, although not too much so, and we laughed and laughed in our room later.  Our sweet little Ruby.  We've always known, it's always been there, in her. 

Aside from crude hand gestures, she has been just a doll lately.  Having her own space has proven to be very important to Ruby and she loves it so.  She will often go up to her room and just play, by herself, for an hour or more.  She loves setting up her little animals and her dollhouse and sitting at her desk making card after card after card for whichever friend happens to be on her mind that day.  She is making lots of progress with her reading and spelling and is more open to correction when she makes a mistake.  (which is often so this is a very good thing.)  My mom gave her 2 pairs of pants for Christmas that she actually likes (!!) and each morning she selects from a drawer full of cute and unstained shirts that make her mama very happy. (I weeded out the cruddy ones and she never even noticed.)  (I did keep her favorite Badgers jersey even though it is 3 sizes too big and she likes to wear it with nothing underneath.  shudder.)

Nicky is up from his nap so I've got to go.  The iron is plugged in over in the corner and that would not end well.

One last thing, dear ones.  Here are some coffee cups I got last week and I am so in love with their pattern.  Aren't they sweet?

Franciscan Ware, Del Mar, 1957 or so


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

partial weekend re-cap with a whole lot of other stuff thrown in

08:35:  Nicky is still sleeping.  Patrick is in the shower.  James and Ruby left an hour ago.  I got a whole hour to myself!  Quite unexpected and appreciated.  I was up until midnight so perhaps I should have crawled back in to bed but it actually didn't occur to me.  (dumb! dumb! dumb!)

How are you?  I've been so busy blabbering on about food that I haven't just had a chance to chat.  :)  There's been a lot going on that I'd like to catch up on, for memory's sake.

Can I just stop to say that I love those kind of random "you might like" posts that pop up under my current posts now?  It's so fun for me to go back and read about our days.  I see that while lots of things change, even more stay the same.  There are always ups and downs and projects and time to myself and a funny husband and cute kids and big messes.  Basically, a whole lot to be grateful for.

Speaking of which, I haven't been updating my "praise worthy" list here.  I go through things in my head but just haven't taken the time to record them and make a permanent link on the sidebar.  I am actually waiting to take down my current header - I am kind of sick of it already - and am so glad I didn't change everything up to match it.  I like to change my headers regularly so I think everything else has to stay pretty neutral.

Okay, let's catch up a little.

Last Friday Nicky went to Sarah's house.  I spent a couple of hours in James' room at school and then came home and listed stuff on ebay for a couple of hours before stealing away to the dig.  I hit gold there and spent $27 on clothes, which seems like a lot, but got soooooo much.  And I was only there for an hour and a half!  Lots for my family (mostly Ruby...lots of summer tshirts, which she totally needs) but also lots to try and re-sell.  My sister reminded me that I used to sell lots of stuff on ebay.  Lots of it!  Like, as my job.  Hmmmm.  I had totally forgot about that.  :)  Most of what I got is summery so I'm thinking it won't sell really well yet.  We shall see, there is definitely a learning curve but a lot seems the same, too.  (It's been nearly 10 years since I did that.  crazy.  ebay seemed like a baby then!  I remember sitting in our extra bedroom in our campus apartment, listening to mp3s (new-ish at the time) on my computer, drinking coffee out of my favorite thrifted mug and browsing ebay on our dial up connection...good times. :) )  Friday night we went to pick up Patrick (the car is kind of unreliable right now so we are pretty much sharing the van.  hoping to find a new car soon!  he drove it today but it's not much fun to drive.  hahaha.  understatement.  bless his heart.) and had Culver's for dinner.  James, my son who is allergic to dairy, ate deep fried cheese curds.  Talk about weird.  He loved them (of course) and we figure they must be cooked enough for his body not to recognize that they contain those horrible dairy proteins.

(09:00 Patrick just left.  Nicky is still asleep!)

Saturday morning we got up and I made some blueberry muffins with one egg in them.  (James is also allergic to egg and tolerates some baked egg but I hadn't tried it at home for a while)  I used our handy new iPad to view the recipe and it worked pretty slick.  (Susan, do you recognize those jars you found for me at Target that day?  I love them.  thank you!  :)  )

(another tangent...Patrick's boss came into his office a few weeks ago and handed him this iPad.  He told him if he could fix it, he could have it.  He left and Patrick had it working about 10 minutes later.  heehehheheeehee.  Patrick stopped at the apple store on his way home from work that night and picked out this nifty cover before he showed it to me.  He was so excited to show me, it was so cute.  I really like it but am not spending too much time with it as I am A)kind of afraid to break it and B) don't need another time sucker.  But it's awesome to have, especially because Patrick really wanted one but we just couldn't justify the expense with needing a new car soon.  What a blessing!  kind of makes up for no one getting bonuses this year.  :(  that was kind of surprising and sad but we've moved on now.  Patrick had just worked so hard last year, as he always does, but had done some extra and pretty amazing things at his job.  I hope it just means they are being sensible in these tough financial times.  I'd rather he had a job than a bonus, you know?  But bonuses sure are nice.  :)  )

SO ANYWAYS.  muffins.  Then we went outside because it had finally! snowed! the day before.  Nicky looked so flipping cute in all of James' old gear.  Having a big brother has many benefits.  Also, I am so happy to have snow pants this year!  It makes such a difference in my outdoor fun level.  Get some snow pants if you don't have them...so worth it!!  (I say that but only spent $1 on mine.  hahahaha.  But now that I know, I would totally spend more for them.  Like, I don't know, at least $5.  hahahahaa)

 We stayed outside for maybe a half hour?  Ruby got ticked off about sharing the "fast" sled and Nicky just got cold.  Here is the aftermath:

:)  Ahhhhh, winter.  Why were we all waiting for you to arrive?

We just hung out for the rest of the morning and after lunch, I left again for some more thrifting.  Friday had just been sooooo good in the short time I had, that I had to go back.  I ended up finding more good stuff (like Levis for Patrick, which I never find) and went home happy and $10 poorer.  (monthly total?  $132.  now it's getting a little ridiculous.  but not really, if you saw all I got!)

Another tangent:  My thrifty friend and I were talking about how much we spend thrifting and it can seem like so much!  But when you think of it as a hobby, because I do love doing it, and see all the good clothes you get for your family at a fraction of the cost and make some of that money back by re-selling, it seems worth it.  It's good to have thrifty friends to rationalize with.  :)

Saturday evening has a hilarious tale to it but I have to go now.  It's 09:18, Nicky is still asleep, and if I just keep typing this will turn into a chapter book.

Honestly.  Longest post ever??  sorry.  :)  no worries if you skipped to the bottom, okay?

xoxo, dear ones.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

meal planning how-to & two weeks worth of meals

((This post is dedicated to two women I love so much and am 
so blessed to have as cousins.  Sarah & Jess, this one's for you guys.  xoxo))

I don't know about you, but when I know what I'm making for dinner and have all the ingredients on hand, my afternoon goes so much better. 

Like everything in my life, I go through phases where I am really good about meal planning and phases where I'm not at all.  In the off phases I end up spending more money on groceries and more time stressing about dinnertime...it's not fun.

I'm at the point where I have quite a few meals that I know are easy to make and also taste really good so I have no excuses!  My favorite recipe inspirations & resources are:  everyday food magazine , allrecipes.com (of course), tasteofhome.com, foodnetwork.com, and clean eating magazine.  I also love to browse foodgawker.com .

If I'm going to shop on Wednesday, I like to start planning on Monday.  The first thing I do is go through my fridge/freezer and take note of what I've got on hand.  Here's what I found on Monday when I looked:

(Grass fed, organic ground beef was on sale last time I shopped so I stocked up.  :) )  

The next time I have a few minutes, I start browsing though my recipe sources (as listed above) or my actual old-school recipe box, keeping in mind what I've already got on hand as starting points.  I start making a list and either pull recipes or bookmark them online for the next pocket of time I get.  I try to plan for 2 weeks at a time because I don't like shopping  more often than that.  (Even if I only plan for a week, though, it's still worth it.)

The next time I've got some time, I start my grocery list.  I always shop with a list or I would forget 75% 98% of what I need.  :)  I go through each recipe and write what I need to make it, grouping items together by what section of the store they're in.  If I don't know if I already have something in my cupboard, I write a check mark by it and "check" it next time I'm in the kitchen.  If I've got it, I cross it off of my list.
In this case, I have ground mustard and breadcrumbs so I crossed them off of the list after I took this picture.  

I'd like to note that I don't write out a plan for breakfasts and lunches most of the time.  We eat the usual suspects for those meals so I always buy the same stuff:  cereal, yogurt, bread, cookies, fruit, blah, blah, blah.  I add that to my list when I'm all done if I didn't already do it.  

I also always add a couple "easy" options for those nights when things go awry.  Canned soup, chicken tenders or mac and cheese are always good to have around.  :)

After this, I'm ready to shop!  Once I come home with everything, I'm not set hard and fast on which day I serve what.  Things shift around some but it feels SO GOOD knowing it's all HERE.  I do try to think ahead a little bit so if I'm going to make Rotisserie Chickens on Wednesday, I can take them out of the freezer on Monday...things like that.

Here are links to a lot of the recipes on my list.  (Some of them are regulars for me and I don't really have recipes for them...like tacos and pizza.) 

pot roast & vegetables  (I add my potatoes in with the beef and carrots.  the secret to good pot roast is to cook it longer.  if it's tough, it's not done.)
chicken barley soup  (I'll use leftover rot. chicken for this)

Please let me know if you have any questions and/or if you found this helpful.  I'd be happy to do it again if it helps someone!!
xoxo, dear ones.

(now I need to go start my soup...)

Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

Monday, January 16, 2012

operation: use up those greens (and a few other things...)

I woke up this morning with a burning desire to clean out my fridge and put all the odds and ends floating around in there to good use.  Along with some stray veggies, about a cup of soy creamer, about a cup of dates and a roll of polenta, I had 2 full bags of spinach that were this close to being ready for the compost pile and some frozen fruit I was worried about losing to freezer burn.  I feel so awful throwing away (even if it's to the compost bin) such good food so I needed to figure out a way to use it up.

I first hit up allrecipes and found this muffin recipe for the dates.  I made a double batch with white whole wheat flour, clementines instead of oranges, changed up the spices a little, added some orange juice, and they turned out delicious.  I'm glad I made a double batch or there wouldn't be too many left for an after school snack.  :) 

Next I took one bag of spinach, the frozen berries (cherries and blueberries), some OJ, a couple clementines and some soy yogurt and blended up some green smoothies.  This made a lot (I did it in a few batches, each one slightly different) so I froze two of the batches in ziploc bags and stashed them in my freezer.  Nicky and I polished off the rest.  Green smoothies are super forgiving, if you've never made them.  Just take a couple of cups of spinach, something frozen (frozen berries or ice), something liquid (oj, milk or cooled tea) and something creamy (banana or yogurt) and blend it up!  Add in whatever other fruits/greens you have and taste as you go...you'll be surprised how yummy they are. 

I got the idea to freeze them from an issue of everyday food.  It says to take a frozen bag out of the freezer the night before you want it and it will be good to go in the morning. 

Finally, I made a dairy free pesto with the other bag of spinach and some walnuts I had in the freezer.  This idea was also from an issue of everyday food. 

First, boil some salted water and add your bag of spinach just for a minute until it wilts.  Pour the wilted spinach into a strainer and run cold water over it until cool.  Next you need to put it on a dishtowel or paper towels and dry it well.  Put the spinach, 2 cloves of minced garlic, some coarse salt and pepper and 1 cup of toasted walnuts into your food processor and process until the walnuts are chopped up nice and small.  Gradually add 2/3 cup of olive oil into the food processor while it's running until all is incorporated.

Presto!  Pesto! 

The article says this dairy free pesto freezes better than regular pesto and walnuts are definitely cheaper than pine nuts, so that's another benefit.  I can tell you it is delicious and I am so happy to have a couple jars stashed in my freezer. 

I plan on using it on pasta, making a pesto pizza and blending with some sour cream for a veggie dip.  I also googled polenta +pesto and found a recipe for dinner tonight!  woohoo!

As for the stray veggies, I'm going to make some veggie stock tomorrow.  And the soy creamer?  gah.  I don't know yet.  Let me know if you have any ideas, okay?  thanks.  :)

xoxo, dear ones.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

taking the red eye

Under my eyes is really read and sore.  On top of them, too.  I had a reaction to that wonderful! classic! pink and green Maybelline mascara and went to the doctor for it this morning.  Thankfully she gave me some steroids...I'm hoping they feel better after a couple of applications. I feel sad that the kids in James' class will have to see me like this but they are only 8, right?  They won't get too scared.  :)

Nicky loves to help out.  He knows where just about everything goes and loves to put stuff away and then come and get me to show me.  My favorite things he says right now are answering "good" when you ask him how he is or how he slept or something like that.  It sounds more like "guh" and is so cute.  The other is when you tell him something and he thinks on it for a minute and will then say, "oh."  so freaking cute.  His new words this week are purple and puppy.  Last week he started saying night-night.  xoxoxo, nicky.

My thrift store total for the month seems HUGE so far.  Yikes.  So interesting to track this.  I've spent around $81!!  I did make some bigger purchases, though:  desk:15, chair:5, vintage framed picture :7.50, gap dress for ruby: 5, boden (!!) dress for me:13  (the 2 dresses are for my brother and erin's wedding...both are like new...boden one still had tag string inside so maybe not even worn) and then a bunch of other little stuff for crafting, clothes for the kids, clothes to re-sell, etc.  It adds up quickly.  I bet I'd have gotten a lot less for that money at Target, though!  Heck, the boden dress probably cost 2x as much so I feel pretty good.  I do want this print:

It is so true!!  I'm saving my pennies and will get it someday...you can find one here.

I feel like I have scabies of the eye or something.  I want to scratch them sooooooooo bad.  I look soooooooooo ugly.  :)  But I am warm so that's something.

xoxoxo, dear ones.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

love is

I was so busy with the rest of the house that I let our bedroom fall into disrepair over the holidays.  There was laundry and random Christmas stuff and (cough) dust all over the place.  My first job this week was to get it back in order.  It took the better part of a day with Nicky (actual time?  probably an hour.  :)  ) to get it together again and then I could have a little fun.

My random wall got a couple of new items...a picture of Patrick and I that I love (yes, also my current fb profile pic)
and that little bear print that I showed you last month:
What follows is a shot of the whole wall.  I actually have something almost ready to hang in the big lower gap between us and that tree print...just need to finish it up.
I also hung my new favorite print up that my sister gave me for Christmas.  She got it here and I absolutely LOVE it.  This is where I love to go every night...my cozy bed (with Patrick next to me), my lamp, my little coaster and my pile of library books. ♥♥♥  
close up:
I found this vintage doll clothes chest that I have stuffed with feedsack scraps under my bed.  Time to do something with this mess!  I've got a couple of ideas...

So, how are you?  I am pooped out, to be honest.  Yesterday Nicky and I were gone all day and spent a lot of it outside...it was so beautiful.  After the kids got home we went back to the park and stayed until almost 5:00.  Couple all that fresh air with a few late nights and I need to catch up on my sleep soon.  Today I babysat a sad little buddy all morning and am now enjoying the silence of nap time.  I do need to find a slow cooker recipe for the pork loin I thawed out yesterday.  Hmmmmm.  Maybe just a short nap first?

xoxo, dear ones.


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