Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Good Old Days

 There's a quote from one of my favorite shows, The Office, where the character Andy says, "I wish there was a way to know you're in the good old days before you've actually left them."  This quote is so true for me.  I'm always looking forward to the next thing.  Getting a license, going to college, getting married, buying a house, having a baby, having another baby, etc..  I feel like I hardly enjoy the moment I'm in because I'm always looking ahead to what's next. 
 *these photos are sort of random but they're just from an ordinary day at home with my kiddos :)

When I was in college, I literally could not wait to graduate so I could get married and start a life with my hubby.  I complained about things, had a bad attitude about the rules or my school work and basically just looked forward to moving past that season of my life.  Not to say that I hated college because I didn't, but I also didn't cherish that time and enjoy it to the fullest.
  Now, I realize those were truly some of the very best years of my life.  The freedom of very little responsibility (I had no "job" besides occasionally babysitting and working on breaks while I was home,) living on campus with my friends and meeting/getting to know/building a relationship with the person that would become my husband.  We had so much fun and so many great days, I wish I would have realized what a wonderful time that was for us.
Now I'm in a different season of my life.

 I find myself sad that I am getting older and wondering how my twenties could have gone by so fast.  But I'm also realizing that I really am in "the good old days."  
 I have two precious babies that I get to spend my days with.  I also share this life with the best partner I could have ever dreamed of.  We have wonderful days, bad days, sad days, ok days, sick days and everything in-between but I wouldn't trade this life for anything in this universe.  I take so much for granted but I am beyond blessed and thankful for life with my little family.  No matter how many days we are blessed with together, it will never be enough.  
 They are growing faster than I thought possible and life is so 'busy' but I hope that I can slow down and cherish these days. 
 My best friends were over a couple weeks ago and one of them talked about how she knows these are the best days of her life.  Truly they are.  We are in the good old days.  (I need to remind myself of this on the bad days, when the kids are fighting all day and Ava Kate is screaming at the TOP of her lungs like she always does and I want to pull out all of my hair!) 

If you follow me in IG, you've already seen most of these pictures but I wanted to include some pictures from our "good old days" :)  


All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The ShutterShop!

Well....this post is a shameless plug for my new Etsy shop, The ShutterShop
I have lots of ideas for the shop but right now, it's a couple of photo prints and some simple, fun camera strap slipcovers!  So...if you're in the market to spruce up your fancy camera or for some new photo art for your home, check out the shop!  

 ^^see that beauty on the bottom left?  That one is made with Lilly Pulitzer's "Let's Cha Cha!"  It's the only one I have in the shop made with Lilly fabric...snatch it up while you can!!

*I am not affilated with Lilly Pulitzer Inc in any way. 

All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!

Monday, August 19, 2013

18 Months!

Our baby girl turned 18months on Sunday.
While I can't believe how fast she has grown, I love this age.  She is the perfect mix of baby and little girl.
She's a stinker for sure and rotten to the core but she's also sweet as can be and we love her so much! 
 And because I can't think of a better way to tell all of the things she is doing's a little bullet list of some things about our girl:

Ava Kate 18 mos.

   ~says lots of words and puts two words together for small sentences like "all gone," "all done," or "oh no!"

   ~loves to give hugs and say "hug" while doing it

   ~LOVES is obsessed with animals and goes crazy when she sees them!

   ~loves baby dolls and is a great little "mommy" feeding them and wrapping them up in blankets.

   ~loves to sing the Goodnight song from Sprout (well...its more like the first two words and then "goodnight, goodnight, goodniiiiiiiiight.")

   ~adores her brother and laughs at almost anything he does.  

   ~loves her favorite stuffed lion "Judah" (daddy named him) and sleeps with him under her arm every night/nap.

   ~loves to sleep and sleeps in every morning (takes after her mommy!)

   ~loves shoes and is always finding a pair to put on 

   ~loves to beg for food from anyone who has it

   Does NOT like:

   ~getting her hair rinsed in the bathtub

   ~taking pictures :( 

   ~mommy leaving her in nursery at church 

   ~sitting in the shopping cart

   ~eating the same thing more than one day in a row, she likes variety! 

I took a few 18month pictures but she was less than cooperative for the most part.  I got a few but it was serious work!  

(trying to get away from daddy here.  She loves to run off when mommy is trying to take her picture :p)

All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Living Room Makeover

Well, I am finally posting about our living room makeover (after over a year!) Better late than never, right? ;)

We painted and put up the board and batten wainscoting over a year ago but it's taken me a while to slowly change out everything else.  It's a lot different than before and I love the fresh, new colors!

Here is a side-by-side to show you the before and after!

I guess the most obvious change is that we opened up the wall where the garage entrance was.  We added the bonus/play room when I was pregnant with Ava Kate and we were unable to sell and needed more space.  This also opened up the living room a bit which is a lot better than having that door staring you in the face!  Anyway, we added the wainscoting, painted, changed out the light fixture (I fell in love when I saw this lantern on Thrifty D├ęcor Chick's blog,) hung the t.v. and got a taller console, got rid of the giant leather ottoman and replaced it with our old coffee table that we had when we were first married, got a new rug, curtains, pillows, etc....  It's crazy to see how much my decorating style has changed in the 5 years that we have lived here!
Here is a before and after from another angle.


 I wish I had a before pic of this wall.  I had a giant, red, metal star in the middle with a few wooden signs with sayings on them on either side. I love the look of this 'gallery wall' now!  (Still working on filling the frames...)


The entry way got a change as well.  I found this piece at a local resale shop.  It's actually an old radio/record player!
 My dad let me borrow his old, film Minolta to play around with and I love having it....can't say that I've used it for the intended purpose but it looks so cute in this wire basket I bought at Marshals!  ;)

On the end table is another wire basket, I just love them!

 I wish these were my hydrangeas but mine decided not to bloom this year, so I got these from Trader Joe's (my fav place to get fresh flowers!)
Thank you for checking out our living room makeover, we are enjoying the new, brighter look!

All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Hayden's Angry Birds Star Wars Party

My big boy turned 4 last month and I'm finally getting around to posting about his party!  We did an Angry Birds Star Wars party since that is something he's been a bit obsessed with lately. 

I kept things pretty simple for this party (maybe I'm still recovering from baby girl's party a few months ago, ha!)  Anyway, I think he enjoyed it just as much.

I decided to make the cake myself to save some money.  It definitely was not for the faint of heart up-close!!  Far from perfect, but edible!  I ordered the fondant characters from Etsy and was really pleased with how detailed and cute they were!

I bought some pre-made fondant and we (mainly Jeff) cut out the number 4 and stars.  He also rolled a million little balls for the bottom.  I tried a new buttercream recipe that called for nutella and it was delicious!!  It was basically your typical buttercream recipe with a cup of nutella but I only used about 1/2 and that was the perfect amount. 

I also had cupcakes (store bought) that I added little AB Star Wars figures on top of for favors.

Can't believe he is 4 already!

All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Hayden's Nautical "Big Boy Room"

Well, Hayden finally got his big boy room (mostly) finished just in time for his 4th birthday! 

I have this thing for nautical anything, I just love it.  So I knew a long time ago that I wanted to re-do Hayden's room in a nautical style.  I tried not to get too carried away with the 'theme' but I'm not sure if I did a very good job of that or not ;)  I also tried to keep it little-boyish.  He is only 4 and I didn't want his room to look like a gallery or living room so I tried to incorporate little boy things as much as I could.  I'd say his room is like 98% done.  I would like to get some rectangle wire baskets for the top of his dresser and probably something to put in the red one on the top right shelf.  But, who knows how long it will take me to get those things.  I have had trouble finding wire baskets or if I do, they are outrageous. 

Anyway, the built-ins were made by hand by my wonderful hubby!  The window seat doubles as a toy box for added storage.  I love the built-ins and they turned out exactly how I wanted!   

His room is very small, so we had to make the most of every inch!  We could only fit a twin bed in there and I decided to put it up agains the wall and build it in to the shelving in order to save space.
The stripes on the bed wall are the same navy as the dresser in his room. We only striped that one wall because I thought it might be overwhelming in that small room to do the other walls.

On the opposite wall is his dresser, which you may remember was a craigslist find I got for $25 and Jeff and I refinished it.  I think his dresser is my fav piece of furniture in the whole house!

The bedding is a mixture of Pottery Barn Kids and a Tommy Hilfiger comforter I got at a consigment sale.  I adore those lobster sheets from PBK!  Definitely a splurge but I couldn't resist.  The rugby duvet cover is also from PBK but Target has almost exactly the same one for cheap but I couldn't find a twin size one online or in stores.  Would have loved to snag that look-a-like!
I decorated the shelves with things I've collected over the past couple years and also a few new things.  I wanted it to look age-appropriate but still stylish so I used a lot of his books, some blocks, a piggy bank, a few nautical knick-knacks and some storage bins for toys.

I need something for that red, wire basket...

Love these whale bookends, they are perfect for this little room :)

For the window seat (I totally wanted one as a kid) I covered a piece of foam with a bed sheet I cut and hot glued on ;)  The crab pillow on the left was made by a friend of mine who also made the fabric banner above his bed.  They both turned out so cute!! 

The wall treatment is 1 1/2 inch aspen hung horizontally and painted the same color as the wall.  While we were on vacation last year at the beach, we saw that wall treatment at our favorite home store there and I knew I wanted to re-create it in Hayden's room.  I love how it looks.  Of course the beadboard ceiling is leftover from the nursery:) Still one of my fav parts of the room.  Gives it so much character!!

I spent lots of time planning the style and decor of this room but my hubby worked even harder building everything and painting.  I tried to help paint but I leave the building up to him!  It turned out great and I am so proud that Jeff is so handy!  Our house would be in sad shape if it wasn't for all the custom touches he's done in there! 
So, we finally finished Hayden's room.  I hope he loves it.  We enjoyed creating it for him!

I'm linking up to Savvy Southern Style!

All photos taken by Kristen (blog author) unless otherwise stated. Do not copy/save or print without permission. Thank you!