Friday, December 17, 2010

O Christmas Tree!

Merry Christmas!
We've actually had our tree up for 2 weeks already, and this year I got my way--with white lights! I love it! Christian did something else really nice for me...He built an 8 inch stand for the tree, so its taller. I love it because it helps fill up the room. The girls loved helping, too.
I really love our tree, and one of my favorite things about it is that nearly everything (ornaments, tree skirt, garland) is homemade. My friend hosted an ornament exchange party a few weeks ago, and my talented friends made some beautiful ornaments. I made these cute plaques made from paint sticks, spray paint, and printables (I stole the idea from this site).

Monday, December 6, 2010

#$@$#$@##$%^$%

Christian said it was okay to do a post without pictures.

I just wanted to say that I am in way over my head this Christmas season--and this blog is one of the last things on a very long list. Between the regular day to day stuff, and all the pressure I feel to give the kids a good Christmas (not give them stuff, give them a good experience), babysitting a few hours everyday, helping with parties at church and school, thinking about the craziness of hosting family for Christmas, crafting (cuz I can't help myself), and, oh yeah, MOVING!!!!! I'm a little stressed. We've had a ton of showings (but no offers) and each one seems to be at an incredibly inconvenient time. Like on Saturday, when we had a showing scheduled one hour before we had an appointment for family pictures. We were able to get the house nice and clean and move up our appointment one hour (can you imagine trying to maintain 4 kids for an hour away from home???!!!), and as we left our house, I thought...For this one moment, we are the perfect family! Clean kids, clean house...nevermind that I didn't last, and wasn't likely to ever be repeated!

Pictures, posts, and good stuff to come...but bear with me while I get my life in order!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

mR. TurKey'S BirThdAy

Hannah declared Thanksgiving this year "Mr. Turkey's Birthday" (which we celebrate by eating him). The kids spent the morning making party hats for themselves and their toys. I spent the morning cutting huge amounts of vegetables to make my favorite stuffing and Christian's special cheesy potatoes. Christian spent the morning getting completely muddy and sore playing in the Turkey Bowl.

Early in the afternoon we shared Thanksgiving dinner with our friends the Michaleks, and 2 boys from my Sunday School class. Valerie's home is gorgeous, and the dinner was fabulous!


Afterward, we played lots of games as the post-dinner food stupor wore off...

Thursday, December 2, 2010

What's going on here?

Guess what I saw my boys doing the other day?
Dancing!
Ball-room dancing, too. I'm not sure what they've been watching on tv, but they were waltzing and twirling. I must say, Nathan was more into it than Aaron, but it sure was cute!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Show me a sign...of gratitude

Just in time for Thanksgiving--a craft! Just what you needed!

A week ago, I was madly cleaning my home (we listed the home--its for sale. Boo), a good friend showed up to help. She didn't call ahead--I probably would have lied and told her I didn't need help. Instead, she made room for me in her very busy schedule and it made a big difference.

To say thanks, and to celebrate the season, I made this (one for me, one for my friend):

Here's a quick tutorial: (not the greatest quality pictures---I was in a hurry. I'll update with better ones soon, but I wanted to get this up...)

First, I found some chipboard letters and painted them off-white (I used spray paint)
Then, I mod-podged the letters with fall-colored paper and sanded the edges. I used distressing ink on the edges.
I cut a scrap piece of MDF down to fit the letters and painted it with some leftover brown paint.

I was actually very careful about spacing the letters, and glued them with regular craft glue.

I cut drilled two holes and laced some cord (stapled to the back, right behind the letters so the staples didn't poke through). I used small clothespins, spray painted the same color as the base of the letters.

The plan is to use this to display pictures of things we are thankful for. Unfortunately, I gave away the finished sign--the one that actually has picture hangers attached-- and you get a picture of it sitting on my craft room floor, waiting for picture hangers :)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Can you believe it?!

I have NO good pictures from Halloween!
After all fuss, and all the time spent making (or for once, buying) costumes, doing hair, and whatever else, I totally slacked on taking pictures. Part of the problem is that I sort of accidentally ended up being Room Mom for Rachel's class, which meant I missed the costume parade at the other kids' school (Rachel attends a different elementary school). And the whole, Halloween on Sunday situation (annoying).
Anyway, Rachel's class party was a hit! We played some games, decorated cookies, and made these cute little handprint ghosts.
Rachel has been asking to be Cinderella for Halloween for at least a year. I bought a pattern, but them I ran across this awesome pattern-less tutorial on MakeItAndLoveIt.blogspot.com, and decided to try it. I ended up making 2 full dresses, each with their own flaws, but its good enough that she felt pretty special.
Hannah was a pumpkin--I bought her costume, but made a headband with leaves. Nathan was a hotdog--I bought his, too, but it was actually a dog costume from Target, and I added straps so it would stay put. Aaron was a dinosaur, but I'm not really sure he was into it. I went to the ward trunk-or-treat wearing an Indian sari (Christian brought it back from one of his trips to India for me) with a black wig to make me look Indian...and decided that black REALLY isn't my color. Christian loaned his pink teddy bear costume to a friend, and instead, rigged up a large empty pictures frame with a strap over his shoulders (so his face was centered in the empty picture spot) and a label that read "Masterpiece." Yup, that was my idea. Sorry, no pictures. Lame.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

worker-man wannabe


There's a new home being built just around the corner from me. My boys love to watch the trucks and hear the loud equipment, especially when the big wood chippers were cutting down trees on the lot. Nathan and Aaron both say they want to be unspecified "worker-men" when they grow up. I love it because they can be amused for hours just watching men work. When the carpet guys were here, my boys sat and watched for hours. I just thought it was adorable. Funny, but they aren't quite as interested in watching me do housework :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

Mixed up days


I just realized I hadn't posted about this yet!(Yes, that's storytime on our couch...in the garage.)
Ever notice how projects and home improvement can turn everything upside down? Such has been the case around here. In an effort to get our home ready for sale (boo--I know, I know), we replaced our carpet. Our old flooring was loop-pile berber, in a light, mottled grayish color. It, and the original paint colors, dated our home, making it look about 10 years older than it really is. While we kept the carpet in the basement, where it is in better condition and doesn't bother be nearly as much, we replaced the carpet on the 1st floor.
It was a huge process to empty out all our bedrooms, closets, and living room so the installers could do their work. We did a lot of crazy rearranging, including putting all 4 kids in the basement bedroom for a week or so (after we started moving furniture, we learned that the installation was delayed 5 days!!)
One of the best things was having my boys completely entertained for hours. They loved watching the installers at work!And now...we love it! Its gorgeous, matched our colors, and feels so nice and soft! I don't think I realized what a big difference it would make.
However, its been 2 weeks, and our piano is still in the kitchen, and the couch is still in the garage. The girls are sleeping in the basement, too (we repainted their bedroom last week). We are being really careful to only move back things we are willing to keep clean, and I love having the bedrooms so much less cluttered...and pretty! I didn't really just how big a difference pretty carpet would make! We've been hanging out on the floor a lot lately...who needs a couch?

Friday, October 29, 2010

My name is Aaron


...and if I ever forget, all I have to do is look in the mirror.

Rachel spent Sunday morning doodling on her brother. This including 3 sun-shapes, in strategic places on his chest (if you know what I mean).

a Halloween copy-cat craft

Have you seen the specimen art all over blogland lately? (here's a picture) I really wanted to make some, but eventually realize how time consuming it would be without a cricut, or other cutesy paper cutter. So, I went did what any lazy crafter would do...and bought something.
I found some adorable 3-D stickers at Michaels, and using only MDF and scrapbook paper I already had, came up with this:
Here's a close-up of the bottom part:

Thursday, October 28, 2010

twinners!

My good friend and Sister-in-law, Marcy, had twin boys last Spring. Being the super with-it crafter that I am, I hurried up and, 6-ish months later, made these name signs and matching picture frame. I found this adorable paper kit for boys, and it had images of everything boys like to get into (robots, superheros, cowboys, animals, sports, outer space, etc.). Since Marcy didn't have a theme for her boys, I used as many different images as I could. The K is one of my favorites--Superman!