Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Ikea Hackers

A fun blog to peruse is www.IkeaHackers.net, and an even better reason for heading over there is because Cullen's room is featured!  I still plan to finish off the shelves and finish the bench but who knows when I'll get around to that.  Go check it out!


Going to the Park

I need to get better at blogging every day things.  Over Labor Day weekend we did a lot of family things together, one little one was visiting one of our favorite parks.  Unfortunately as we went for our family bike ride we realized that there was a HUGE mosquito invasion on the bike trail so we had to cut that short.

Enjoy the pics!

even daddy got in on the fun!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Cullen's Big Boy Room Part 1

We started changing Cullen's room around a little bit.  I'm not quite ready yet to move him out of the crib, and since he's not climbing out, why change that.  BUT we did start working on the new built in look.  After a lot of searching on pinterest for some inspiration, and finding pieces on Ikea.com that looked like it would work, we went out shopping.

But first, the before shot:

Ended up buying 2 - Ikea Malm dressers, 2 - Ikea Billy Bookcases, and 3 - Ikea Expedite Cubes.

Then began the 'ikea hack' we drilled into the bottom of the bookcases and the top of the dresser to connect them with large bolts, then we also drilled both pieces into a stud in the wall to make sure they were super secure.  We still want to do some finishing using some moldings around both units.  The Expedit cubes are just sitting on the ground right now, but we're going to make them into a window bench.  We just have to account for the floor vent so we don't cover that up.

Even though its not done yet, I really like how it turned out.  We can't actually use the drawers on the right yet because of the crib, but even without that we still have a ton of space!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

2 Years Old

It seems so crazy for me to write this blog post, my baby is 2!  Cullen is such a great little boy, just think 2 years ago he was this tiny.

Born at 1:57pm after over 17 hours of labor this little bundle was placed in my arms.  He has brought so much joy to our family.  Cullen always knows when mama or dada (or caleb) need a hug or kiss,   he's such a cuddle bug and gives the tightest, bigest hugs a 2 year old could give.  He's a constant everyday friend for Caleb and has really made our lives complete.  I don't know if we'll be going through the baby stage again but even as a baby he was great.  Sure I didn't sleep for over 15 months, but those nights laying awake with him I'll never regret or be sad about.

Last year when he turned 1 I thought, wow this kid is the cutest most adorable baby ever, how did I get so lucky.

With his bright blue eyes, his little baby curls and his perfect porcelian skin.  Now he's 2, he's growing and learning new things every day.  I'm so proud of my little boy.  He has so many words, he loves to dance.  He loves dressing up and picking out his shoes every morning.  He loves jumping and playing with his brother, and he loves to cuddle up and watch a *short* movie or read books with the family.  He tries to play hungry hungry hippos and its quite funny but sometimes he wins.  He'll pretty much want to play with whatever his big brother plays with, and loves to build pillow forts with his daddy.  He is full of expressions, pouts, sad faces, then he'll look up and smile cause he was just pretending.  He'll run toward us to give us a big hug, then run back to do whatever he was doing.  He loves art, coloring with crayons and markers, paint, stickers.   He loves food too.  His favorite meat is probably pork, but he loves steak, chicken (as long as its not fried), salmon, ham.  He's not so much into hotdogs, pizza, or mac&cheese, but he does love french fries.  He likes candy (but what kid doesn't) but also likes wheat crackers and goldfish, and of course cookies and cake and icecream.

I'm proud to say that he's been potty trained for a couple weeks.  I would have never guessed that my little boy would be in undies at 23 months but he was.  He's such a smart boy, he helps out around the house with garbage night, and laundry, and cleaning up his toys.  He loves his aunts, uncles and grandparents, and cousin's too.  He loves swimming, and swinging, and being outside as much as possible.  And he's pretty good at getting his pictures taken.

Here are his 'official' 2 year pictures.  He loved his suspenders and tie so much he didn't want to take them off at bedtime!

When asked how old he was gonna be, he responded like this.  Afterall holding up 2 fingers on one hand is a little difficult!

Well if you made it this far, thank you for reading.  I'm so proud of my little guy and I love him so much. 

happy birthday Cullen!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Almost 2!

I can't believe I writing this blog post, my baby is turning 2 in a couple weeks, its crazy.  Because I wanted to scout out a location, it dawned on me that I should probably 'start' Cullen's 2 year pictures.  Short mini-sessions are key when working with this age, and I want a LOT of pictures, cause I'm just like that.  I actually got quite a few 'keepers' and I'll share most of them with you now :)

this one is pretty much perfect

and a couple of Caleb

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Our Summer Vacation | Canadian Lakes Michigan

We had so much fun on our 2012 summer vacation.  This was the first time we rented a cottage just to ourselves for a week.  We decided to check out www.vrbo.com to rent a cottage somewhere in Michigan.  I found a very small cluster of lakes and we found a cottage on a small, no-wake lake.  The location was great, we had a gigantic private beach just ourside our backdoor.  The kids loved playing in the sand first thing in the morning.  Then as it heated up we moved into the lake where Caleb actually learned to swim.  In the evenings the boys loved throwing bread out to the crazy fish that would swim up and practically take it from your fingers. 

I won't lie, it was super hot, we got a crazy heat wave that week, and no a/c in the cottage made it quite difficult.  We ended up leaving a few days early cause Cullen liked the lake water too much and swallowed a lot and got some tummy issues, that in combo with the no a/c made our minds up for us.

Anyway hope you enjoy some of these pictures.  We did lots of stuff on our trip, including putt putt golf, and visiting my Aunt and Uncle at their cottage about 1.5 hours south of us.  Caleb took his first ride on a jet ski and loved it (although I didn't get any pictures).

Friday, June 1, 2012

A new room...

Caleb has had a captains bed since he moved out of his crib.  While he likes it, he's been wanting to sleep on a 'lower' bed.  So short of going out and buying a new bed, here's our solution.  I wish I had before pictures cause just a little furniture placement can really change the look of a room.

The boys even have a little 'fort' under the tall bed.  they had a blast there this evening!

Saturday, May 26, 2012


Well we got our garden finished today, added some seedlings, and a few more seeds to our already growing garden. Here's what we hope to grow this year, some are new additions, some are oldies that we love.

Our Strawberry plant, which we started last year.  Last year we only got 2 or 3 strawberries, this year it looks like we'll have a lot more, we'll have to wait and see.

Our grape vine, we actually planted this 2 or 3 years ago.  I think this year we finally see a cluster starting to grow!

Our "salad" garden, we started from seeds with everything except the 2 broccoli plants there.  By the time the broccoli plants get bigger the lettuce will be all gone.

In this garden, from top to bottom:  Row of Carrots, 2 Broccoli Plants, Sweet Salad Mix, Row of Arugala, Row of Green Leaf Lettuce

Fruit/Veggie Garden.  We have a couple seeds starting, but everything you see was bought from seedlings.
From Left to Right:
 - Green Bean Seeds (8 plants)
 - Radish Seeds (8 *to be planted)
 - Back, 4 Watermellon Plants
 - Front, 4 Celery Plants
 - Broccoli Plant (middle)
 - Eggplant (middle)
 - Broccoli Plant (middle)
 - Back, 4 Cucumber Plants
 - Front, 4 Green Pepper Plants
 - Far Right, 2 Tomato Plants (big boy, cherry)
 - Basil Plant

Herb Garden, it it we have Rosemary (we LOVE on chicken and potatoes); Oregano (comes back every year); Peppermint Plant - Cause caleb picked it out cause of how good it smells; We also have 8 stalks of green onions that I got at the supermarket, used up and just plopped in there, we'll see if they grow.  The big thing is a rosebush that we transplanted there way before we ever knew we'd use this spot as an herb garden.

And the one thing I forgot to take pictures of was our Asparagus 'field' lol, we have 2 rows of 23 asparagus crowns/plants growing.  We actually let them go to fern this year, next year we'll start harvesting!  And I can tell we're going to get a lot!

Monday, May 14, 2012

A little curb appeal

If you have been to our house in the past you've seen our horrible front flower beds, maybe its just me, but I absolutely hated it. I also probably just got sick of looking at it. Anyway a few weeks ago we ripped out the center evergreen tree along with 3 overgrown holly bushes. And I've spent the last 2-3 weeks putting 'new' stuff in. Everything you see (aside from the 2 evergreens on the left and the tree on the right) has been moved or planted. Total Cost of this renovation... $15 on 4 bags of aged pine bark that we used to work in the soil, which happens to be mostly clay. I got a lot of new plants from my mom who splits her perennials every year. Thanks MOM!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Cullen's First Haircut

Cullen got his first haircut yesterday, and man was he stunned. I don't think he moved an inch the entire time his Aunt Julie was trimming his hair, he just didn't know what was going on. I can't believe it, he's still my baby but I can see him growing up every day.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Angry Birds!

Caleb loves the game, doesn't matter if its on the smartphone or the board game, or throwing around our huge stuffed birds/pigs around the house. Here's how we played it today.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Caleb's 4th Birthday!

My oldest son, the boy who first called me mama turned 4 yesterday, I could barely believe it! Well today we threw him a Star Wars Party at his request of course! We did a lot of the preparation together as a family DIY style! I absolutely love throwing parties, I wish I could do it full time.

Every good party starts with a great invitation. This invitation was really designed by everyone in the house (well maybe not Cullen). After I laid out the rough draft, Tony came back and corrected my 'yoda' language and Caleb picked the pictures.

After the invites, I started scouring the internet for ideas for the goodie bags and decorations. For the goodie bags I wanted to do something DIY so I made some R2D2 crayons using a mold I got on amazon. Of course we had to have a pinata, and what else but a Death Star. Unfortunately you can't find a death star pinata in the store so we decided (well Tony wanted) to DIY it. We found plans on http://www.starwars.com/ so we went for it. We ended up cheating a little (using spray paint instead of tissue paper), but hey it turned out. It was crushed in like 5 seconds so I'm glad we didn't spend more time than necessary. I also made some yummy snacks and other food, along with fun labels (star wars themed of course).

And you can't have a star wars party without light sabers!! We started the party with a create your own light saber activity. The kids took a light saber and picked a color to use (duct tape comes in lots of colors) then they added buttons (foam stickers!). The light sabers were very easy and cheap to make. Tony made them using PVC pipe, PVC end caps, and Pipe Foam Insulation. I think the total cost was under $1 a saber.

I didn't get a lot of pictures of the fun, hey even moms try to have fun at parties, but I did get a few candids. Caleb had a really great time, the best part I didn't get pictures of, but video. If I ever figure out how to share video on here maybe you'll see it!. All the kids took some light saber training (by none other than muah), then out of the blue, Darth Maul showed up. thank goodness so many trained jedi's were in the room, they destroyed him, it really is a funny video.