Tuesday, November 18, 2014

our love story

Yesterday marked our seven year anniversary. I am so proud of the little family that we have created and I constantly feel extremely blessed to have such healthy, funny, creative, smart boys in my life.

When we first met, Curtis and his friend vowed to never hang out with me and my friends again. They spent the evening being subjected to our silly, giggly banter and decided we were way too weird. I don't know what prompted Curtis to eventually ask me out weeks later (and he doesn't know either...I still ask him all the time), but I'm so glad he did. It must have been the same thing that kept that one stop light red through three cycles, prompting him to turn his truck around, drive back to my house, and swoop in for our first kiss. And again, after only a month of dating, something led Curtis to propose to me under the boardwalk at sunrise rather than drive home to Florida knowing that he might not see me again.

I'm pretty sure Heavenly Father had a fun time watching our whirlwind romance unfold and watching us follow along with his promptings even though they sometimes seemed a little crazy. I'm so glad that we were guided to each other and into this life that we now have. Sometimes I feel like we are just two kids "playing house," making things up as we go. I kinda think I'll always feel like that, but at least that means that life will always be exciting and challenging and rewarding.

Yesterday was just a normal day for us. We plan to celebrate this weekend, but as I stood in the kitchen yesterday watching the kids and Curtis wrestle like they do every afternoon, I loved that we were all together as a family on that particular day. Anniversaries should be a celebration for the whole family, because it's not just Curtis and I's love story anymore. It's all of our love story now.

Monday, November 10, 2014

on motherhood and feeling grateful





The other night I was reading stories with the boys for bedtime when Ande got upset about something and leaned down and shouted right in my ear. Usually this would really tick me off but for some reason, instead of scolding him, I burst into a fit of laughter. Inside, I really was upset. Somehow my brain got some wires crossed and caused me to laugh instead of shout.

Once I started, Ande and Owen started giggling, and we couldn't even get through the rest of the book. Maybe I'm reading too much into this, but I really feel like those crossed wires were a little blessing sent from up above. I really don't like getting after the boys but sometimes it's just hard to keep my cool. You know?

I'm feeling pretty grateful for that small moment on that otherwise uneventful night. I'm grateful that we were able to spend those last minutes before sleep laughing and smiling rather than frustrated and sad.

Anyways, I guess that is what motherhood is all about... learning to laugh when you'd rather be crying.

More of my thoughts on motherhood here, here, and here.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

what i'm watching 2.0


+ Crime/Suspense - The Blacklist
This show is perfect for any crime show junkies like me. It is exciting and intriguing. It's one of those shows where you binge watch just to see what happens next. In terms of language and suggestive scenes, it is pretty clean, but it can be dark and pretty scary! So you might not want to watch if you have a weak stomach!

+ Period Drama - Death Comes to Pemberley
If you love Jane Austen and Downton Abbey, you are going to l.o.v.e. this! I mean, who wouldn't want to see a glimpse into the future of Pride and Prejudice's beloved characters!? Seriously. It is really, really good! This mini-series is based off of a book by the same name, Death Comes to Pemberley by James, P.D., which I read a couple years ago and also loved.

I don't feel like I really need to explain myself on this one. If you have't read the books, or seen the movies, then you are wayyy behind, folks! But really. Have a party, watch this movie, and get yourself ready for the next movie coming out this month!!!

+ Short Documentary Series - City.Ballet (season 2)
This is an AOL orignal series documenting life in the New York City Ballet. Season 2 just came out with 12 episodes, each only 8 or so minutes long. If you want to know what life is like as a professional ballerina, you must watch this! It is really, really great. Also, I'm a little bit bias because I caught a glimpse of one of my best friends from high school in one of the episodes and I am ever so proud of him (season 2, episode 4)!

What movies or tv shows have you seen (and loved) lately?

This is what I was watching last time.

This post contains affiliate links for Amazon.com

Monday, November 3, 2014

how to finish an embroidery hoop and how to stay inspired

Sometimes I run smack into a creative rut. It usually happens when I've finished a big project. I sit down and think to myself, "Okay...what am I going to make next?" Then I feel so much pressure to come up with something that I end up not being able to think of anything at all! I get on Pinterest or Instagram to try to glean some inspiration, but that usually just leaves my head swirling with ideas and unable to focus on just one thing.

The thing that I finally found most useful was to just start working on something completely unrelated. Instead of forcing myself to come up with a new crochet pattern, I will start reading a new book or I will pick up a craft that is purely for me and not for my blog or shop. You know how people sometimes say that they come up with their best ideas in the shower? Well I totally find it to be true! It's pretty much the same idea...when you take a step back and let your brain relax, that's when inspiration finally strikes!

That was the reason for starting this embroidery hoop project. I needed to work on something that was all for my own gratification, with no pressure involved. I've been getting some things together for a new gallery wall in my living room and I knew I wanted to add in something embroidered. I decided to copy the look of my blog logo (by my wonderful friend, Mary) and I absolutely love how it turned out!

Embroidery can be so relaxing and the colors always pop so well that it's really just lovely to look at!

Since I wanted this to be a "finished" piece, I wanted to figure out a way to make it look "finished." This is what I came up with:

+ When cutting out the circle of fabric, cut 2 circles.
+ When finished with the embroidery, place the 2nd circle with wrong sides together with the embroidered circle.
+ Once you place them in the hoop, use some thread and sew a basting stitch around that extra inch or so of edging.
+ Pull tight and gather so that the fabric now lies flat against the back of the hoop. Tie it off.

It's so simple and it looks nice!

How do you find inspiration? 

Friday, October 31, 2014

pirates and monkeys and dinosaurs! Oh, my!











Halloween is such a fun time of year, especially as the kids get older. I usually stress myself out trying to make their costumes but when the boys love them and wear them for months after, all that work is so worth it!

This year's costume making adventure was particularly interesting since my sewing machine decided to freak out and die on me. I had to sew everything by hand, so I tried to make things as easy for myself as possible.

We decided long ago that Milo would dress up as a monkey. He loves monkeys. He's obsessed with monkeys. It's weird and cute. I decided that a sock monkey costume would be the easiest thing to do. He already had a cute knit outfit that sorta looked "sock monkey-ish" and then I just added a knit monkey hat to match!

Owen wanted to be a transformer but I convinced him otherwise since well, been there done that! His second choice was a dinosaur! I bought cute striped footie pj's from Walmart and then hand sewed the tail and hood onto the pj's with fleece. When it comes to Halloween costumes, fleece and felt are my best friend! No need to worry about fancy seems! I absolutely L.O.V.E. how Owen's costume turned out! I especially love how his tail wags back and forth as he runs around. It's hilarious and adorable.

Ande also wanted to be a transformer again, but I strongly encouraged a little variety! His "Jake and the Neverland Pirates" costume was pretty easy to piece together. Once again, I used fleece to make his vest and felt to make his boot covers. I love his very pirate-y facial expressions when I ask him to pose for the camera!

And now we are just anxiously awaiting 6 o'clock so the boys can run around the neighborhood and beg for candy from strangers! Halloween is such a strange little holiday, yet oh so fun.