Feeling Creative & Crafty

I have the creative craft bug, again. I am just aching to get my hands into something around this house. Maybe it's because friends of ours just bought a house and I keep reading about the work they are doing there? I have so many ideas in my head and want to DO SOMETHING! Two things are holding me back, though... 1) Time and 2) Money. (Well, three things if you count Kevin! lol)

I want to paint an old buffet we have in our living room. It was a hand me down from my mom and it a little worse for wear. The legs/feet on the bottom are not very stable and it just looks really beat up. I think some nails in the bottom and a nice thick coat of black paint would do wonders. (Oh, and some new hardware, of course.)

I want to put in an above-the-range microwave. Our microwave has been a trooper... I've had it since college! It works pretty well... just takes a little longer to get things really hot and sometimes it will just shut off (like, literally) if you run it too long. ;) I would really like to get a new one and have it installed above the range. This would mean that we'd have to replace the cabinet up there, too... so that might make the project a little harder.

While we're on the kitchen, I'd love to paint the walls in there (and in the dining area). I'd also like to put in a nice back splash... maybe stamped tin or something that looks like stamped tin.

Onto the master bathroom... I want to put a frame around the huge mirror in there. I've seen it done before. Some nice, white moulding right on top of the mirror edge. That shouldn't be too hard, or expensive, but we have to find the time for it. I'd also like to put in a sliding glass door to the shower. It's a small master bathroom with a tub/shower combo, but it's a garden tub and I think glass doors would make the room feel larger. I don't even know if that's something we could do ourselves but it couldn't be that hard. Could it?

I've also been thinking about a toddler room for Lea. I know we have another 6 to 12 months before that time comes but I can't help but day dream about this stuff! Our guest room is painted a beautiful greyish-blue with bright white trim. I would keep that color and just add some pink and yellow stuff to the room. It would be a bird theme with birdhouses, trees and little birdies all around. Adorable, right?! I guess the blue walls would act as a sky back drop. I love it! Just before Lea's first birthday party (which was a bird theme) I found a huge birdhouse (like the size of a toy box) at a consignment shop. It was already painted pink and white so I just painted some flowers and stuff around it to dress it up. Well, until recently it's been sitting in the garage. But, Kevin opened the top, added some hinges and a knob. It's going to be a bird house toy box! :)

There are other things I want to do around this house... new carpet in the master bedroom, paint Lea's bathroom, add crown moulding in the master bedroom, etc. I doubt we'll get to everything before we move and even then there will always be something in another house. That's just the way it goes when you own a house! So, I have to find smaller scale projects to keep me busy (and happy). Like this buffet table staring at me while I type this. I think that will be my next project. It should be easy to do and won't cost much. I just need to find the time... and convince Kevin! :)


Hair Bows

When Lea had just enough hair to wear clips and bows, I started making some. But, like most craft projects, I got bored and stopped. Until recently... I started making a few more. It's really easy and a lot of fun. Here are two of my favorites that I made last week.

 And, here's my little princess just as we were getting ready to leave the house one morning. Lea decided that she needed her necklace, bracelets and purse... :)

 Ok... one more! This is the same day. She has recently discovered stickers and will spend quite some time sticking them to this poster paper, then picking them off so she can re-stick them, again. (And don't you just love her shoes!?)


Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day! Kevin and I had a great date-night, thanks to Gaga and Papa Thomas. We went to see Black Swan (really intense movie!) and then got ice cream afterwards. Tonight, Kevin is starting a daddy/daughter Valentine's date. He's taking Lea to Chick-fil-a for dinner... he even had to make a reservation on their web site! Too cute, I know. ;)

We've been busy lately... valentine party play-dates, the circus, grooming Bailey (which is an all-day affair), movie & ice cream date without Lea and playing at the park. It was a fun weekend! But... Kevin had to head back to the office today. :( Lea woke up bright and early to tell him good-bye. I hope she doesn't think this will be the norm from now on. I need her to stay in bed until 8 am... I have to have need a half hour to myself in the mornings! Is that too much to ask for? And... NO... I will not be getting up before 7 am. It's hard enough for me to get up at 7:30 am.

Anyhow, I digress. Here are some pics from our fun weekend...

Enjoying cookies w/ her friend Caleb.

Meeting her first clown at her first circus!

Watching the trapeez artists at the circus.

Playing at the park.
  The next picture was my (failed) attempt at getting a family shot. I find a place to set the camera, set it on a 10 sec. timer and run to place.... just then, Lea starts screaming, Bailey turns around and I blink. Seriously? Zoom in... it's pretty funny. :)

I love her eyes!
Lea has been busy, too. Lately she has really shown more interest in trying to say more words. The words she has down pat are as follows:

Bay-me (Bailey)
Gaga (Grandma)
Bup (Up)
Duhm (Down)
Muh (More & Milk)
Bub-bub (Bubbles)
K-k (Cookie... she just makes the "k" sound twice)

Now, her new words... like, all of a sudden the past couple weeks, are:

Papi (Pacifier)

Tut-uh (Turtle)
No (Snow)
Pie-pee (Piper... my brother's dog, who they often call Pipee)
Bown (Brownie)
Peee (Please)
Cheee (Cheese... like, when you take a picture!)

I love hearing her try to say new words! I really need to write them down and keep up with it because it's getting hard to remember them all.


To Cook or Not to Cook...

I don't like to cook.

There, I said it! It's one of those things that I wish I did like, but I really don't.  I can make some great cookies (and actually made delicous cheesecake brownies from scratch on Sunday!), but cooking a meal is another story. I love to eat and I actually like to eat healthy foods, but it's so much faster & easier to grab a frozen pizza and a handful of baby carrots chips.

I'm trying to make an effort to cook more, though... especially now that I am a stay-at-home mom. I found this cool site called Super Cook where you can enter items that you have in your kitchen and they will give you a list of recipes that you can make with those items. Last night I tried a chicken recipe (it was just ok) and tonight I'm doing pork chops. If it's not easy, I won't make it. I think tomorrow I'll make vegetable beef soup... from scratch, not from a can. How hard can that be? Beef, frozen veggies, beef broth, a little pasta and some seasoning. I can do that! (right?)

Currently, Lea eats the best in our family. If we have McDonald's, she has homemade chicken nuggets, peas and baked sweet potatoes. I want to change that. I want us ALL to eat well & healthy. We deserve it, right!?

I need some encouragement and inspiration to keep going. What are some of your favorite (easy) recipes and what are your time saving tips when making dinner?

Lea enjoying (not-so-healthy) conch fritters in FL.


Home, again!

Lea and I had a fabulous time in the Keys. The only thing that could have made it better would have been if Kevin was there, too. After a couple "cold" days (the high was only in the upper 60's!... I'm being a little sarcastic, but it was chilly & windy), the weather was warm and wonderful. Each morning we called the manatees and a few mornings we took the boat to a local restaurant for breakfast on the water. Lea tolerated her life vest much better than I had anticipated. We spent our time playing in the sun, out in the boat and just lounging around the house. It was really great to see Uncle Dave & Aunt Sarah. When they arrived, Lea immediately started to "show off" all her tricks. It was adorable. Lea is becoming more and more independent every day and she is trying to say more things, too... like "Da" for Uncle Dave and "PeePee" for their dog Piper. Oh, my Uncle Chick and Aunt Bobbie were there with their dog Brad, too. Brad is a big, chocolate lab. Lea just loved to crawl all over Brad and especially liked it when his tail would hit her in the face. She would stand right behind him just so it would. :)

Here are some pics from our trip...

Our house on the canal.

Watching the manatees in our back yard canal.

Giving the manatees water from the hose.
Who knew they drank fresh water?

This is Charlie... see the cut on his tail.
He came by almost every day.

Feeding the seagulls.

Driving the boat with Papa.

Hanging out with Uncle Dave & Aunt Sarah.

Walking with Gaga and Papa.

Looking at the water with Uncle Dave.

Aunt Sarah and Piper in the boat.

Eating breakfast with Mommy.

So, we're back home now and missing the manatees. It was so much fun walking out the back door, right to the water. I think we'll move to the beach! ;)

I just love this pic! :)