Nursery Reveal!

Oh.  My.  Gosh. 

Can I just tell you how much I love how the nursery turned out?  The other night I had the table lamp on and I could’ve sat for hours in the rocking chair, reading books to Emma.  This room makes me so happy.

Before you look at the finished product, let’s take a look at my inspiration board:


And the reveal:

For those of you that have complimented me on the dresser, I can’t take credit for it.  That is the finish that it came with.  Fortuitous, yes?

The bedding is Full Circle from Land of Nod.  It’s since been discontinued, but I remembered this design since I was planning Ava’s nursery back in the day.  I stumbled across it a couple of years ago at a garage sale for $10 (it’s over $100 for the set) and snagged it so fast that I didn’t realize it had some yellow staining until I got it home.  I tried unsuccessfully to get the stains out, but in the end it doesn't really bother me.  I just point that side toward the wall.  I also made three matching crib sheets - because I’m obsessive like that.

I had to give you a close-up of the three patterns/colors going on in the room: the gray stripes, the lime green polka dot curtains and the gray/turquoise/green bedding.  I am going to now reveal something shocking: Elliott picked out the curtain material!  I had purchased some other material previously and we both agreed it just didn’t work.  So he started fishing through things in the closet, found a quilt I made which had this lime green fabric in it, and held it up to the bedding.  Who would’ve thought?  But we love it!  Don’t you?


After I fixated on the daschund lamp (with Lily’s assistance) and the little dog vase/statue I picked up at a garage sale (and spray painted, though not quite the shade I was looking for), I jumped in with both feet and decided if their was any “theme” I would stick with dogs.  Hence, I made a couple of dog silhouette graphics using scrapbook paper I had on hand to use as artwork on the gallery shelves.  I also threw in a couple of personal mementoes (a love note from Elliott, a picture of Emma’s newborn fingers), graphics I created or found for free, and some greenery and toy trucks (courtesy of my inspiration board photo).

My lovely little reading/nursing corner.  I bought the side table at a consignment store last weekend for about $40.  It is sturdy as a rock (they just don’t make them like they used to) but if I had more energy and inclination I would paint it white.  (Elliott says I paint everything and he might be right.)

My lovely little daschund lamp from World Market.  *Swoon*  And I wanted Dashel to get a chance to look at his sisters too (Oh, who am I kidding, I love that photo!)  Books courtesy of Emma’s last reading session.


I had the three vintage Winnie the Pooh prints hanging in the girls’ bathroom at our last two home and one day I realized they colors worked in the nursery, so in they came.  The wall is quite large but it is enough to break up the space and in fact I enjoy all the “white space” in the room and am fighting the urge to fill up all the corners.  The green bins on the bottom shelf hold burp cloths and blankets but may eventually get swapped out for wicker baskets, just something to give a little more texture to the room.  And yes, eventually I’ll get a non-pink changing table cover (or make one).  


On the way out of the room I used IKEA spice racks to hold books at just the right toddler height (Emma approved) and hung a mirror with a Thoreau quote on it.  That may get swapped out later for something else, but I think right now everything is just perfect!

Hogle Zoo Field Trip

My friend Missy, a fellow homeschooler and church member, has a family pass to Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City and invited us to go with her as her guests one lovely day the end of March.  I am pretty sure everyone else in the metro area also took advantage of the gorgeous weather and showed up the same day (seriously, it was crazy busy for mid-week), but we all had a great time!


{Homeschool} Cloud Unit

Sometimes (OK, most of the time) I don’t really have an agenda for homeschooling other subjects beyond math and English.  I let Ava take the lead and just work off of that.  However, I had a homeschool friend who was studying clouds with her 1st grader through K12 and I thought “that sounds good.”  So I decided we should study clouds too.

We read quite a bit from Abeka science textbooks I had, borrowed every juvenile non-fiction book on the subject from the library, created a water cycle chart on the wall, constantly pointed out what type of clouds were in the sky whenever we drove anywhere, and performed numerous fun experiments and crafts.  Overall, I think it was really successful!

One experiment we did helped us visualize water vapor.  First, pour boiling water into a mason jar then set a small metal bowl with ice and little water on top.  The inside of the jar will become gaseous and water droplets will form on the bottom of the bowl.


Another day we played with one of Lily’s birthday presents – snow in a bottle.  It’s some sort of material that when you add water puffs up and becomes fluffy like snow.  The texture is fun and the girls had a good time playing with it.


While the girls were playing with the “snow”, I busted out a few other experiments.  First, I added shaving cream to the top of a glass of water then dropped in a few drops of blue food coloring.  This illustrated how when clouds get heavy with water vapor, it rains.  Cool, huh?


We also created a tornado in a jar.  Why? Because the girls wanted to see a tornado.


Then we did some “cloud painting”: equal parts shaving cream and Elmer’s glue.  It turns into a puffy, 3-dimensional type of medium, creating the effect of clouds.  I gave the girls blue construction paper to paint on, so it seemed like the real deal.


We finished off our cloud study a few days later with a much anticipated “cloud dinner”, as picked out by the girls: jicama, cauliflower and mashed potato clouds and pepper rainbows.  Dessert was sunshiny pineapple and marshmallows.


Lily’s 5th Birthday

This year – Lily scored in the party department!  It always seems that her other sisters get parties and Lily never does.  Not so anymore.  We invited all of her preschool friends over for a party the Saturday before her birthday.

I tried to come up with a theme and since I didn’t want anything character-based (like Dora or Elmo), I settled on “rainbow.”  My inspiration was most definitely Jill’s birthday party, but a quick Pinterest search also revealed other fun ideas:

PicMonkey Collage
Lily invited all of the kids in her preschool class.  Here is our invitation (which I found here):Lily's BD invite1 Rainbow cupcakes with rainbow sprinkles

Rainbow pom-poms


Thank you gifts (with Jill’s homemade tags): rainbow Twizzlers and marshmallow “clouds”

For lunch, each of the kids created their own mini pizzas, adding whatever toppings looked good.

The eating portion didn’t take nearly as long as I thought it would (ha!) so the kids moved right along to opening presents.  I had to stand there and police the presents – “let Lily do it, kids!” – as everyone wanted to help (as you can see from the photo below, Emma was one of the worst offenders).


The kids filled the rest of the party time playing with new toys and taking over the basement.  Lily had an absolute blast and was overjoyed to be the center of attention for a little bit.

Sunday we celebrated with all of our Kay family, combining Asher and Lily’s birthdays.  On Lily’s actual birthday (Monday), we went out to eat at Golden Corral (her choice, a popular request from the girls).  Piper fell asleep on the way home, so it was a small crowd opening presents that night.

Lily scored some new clothes and a Boz the Big Green Bear DVD (Christian children’s character), and a butterfly garden (caterpillars to come).  I think she had a perfect weekend.


It was a full weekend of celebrating Lily, which she relished and we loved to see.

Happy birthday Lily, my big 5 year old!


February Updates {Life Via Facebook}

February 3
Note to self: The best time to go to the doctor's office is during the Super Bowl. (Stupid *almost* ruptured eardrum, which there is nothing to do but take Ibuprofen and wait). But I managed to only miss the halftime show. Score!

February 4
My ear is feeling better this morning. I think Ibuprofen rather than Tylenol is the key (anti-inflammatory). Regular dosing has kept the pain levels low, but I am still semi-deaf in one ear. (And playing that up a bit with the kids. "What, I can't hear you" Ha ha ha!)

February 5
I love how strawberries go on sale just in time for Valentine's season!

February 7
Tonight Lily chose (chose!) to eat her spinach rather than the chicken, pesto and mozzarella panini I made for dinner. She DID rethink this decision after several bites, but by then it was too late and the sandwich had been doled out to another sister.

It would be nice to see my Elliott more often. The new job is keeping him pretty busy.

February 8
I love using a deck of playing cards and dominoes to do math with Ava. Who needs textbooks?

February 12
Just convinced Elliott to go to the chiropractor because he is so much pain. Please, God, if I am right about just one thing today - PLEASE let this be it.

I just made steamed asparagus with homemade Hollandaise. Who am I? And more importantly, where has this deliciousness been all my life??!!

My 17 month old has been following me around yelling "I eat! I eat!"   Think it's time to feed them?

February 14
The plus-side: my hubby is home all day on Valentines Day! The down side: he'll be doped up on Loritab and muscle relaxers and not so interactive.

As I was having a little mental pit-party about how I'll spend Valentines Day serving my hubby, I asked God to help me change my attitude. Then at the doctor's waiting room I started reading my book, and right at the top of the chapter was John 15:13 - "Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends." HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!

February 18
Why don't my children understand the importance of Downton Abbey? Quiet time, please children.

February 19
I can think of a million things to do at the moment (put away clothes, ironing, reading, etc). But none of them are feasible with the kids running around. *sigh* So I'm on Facebook.

Thanks to everyone who came to my doTerra Essential Oils class today! I had a great time; thank YOU for letting me share it with you!

February 21
Made miso soup, potstickers, mongolian beef stir-fry and rice for dinner.  The kitchen and dining area are now a mess, I’m tired and I am hosting book group in 30 minutes.  Lucky for me, these ladies are full of grace.

February 23
Countdown to March 10 begins.  Why you ask?  Because then maybe life will slow down.  So much coming up – Lily’s (multiple) birthday celebrations, homeschool conference, crafting/blogging event, plus all the normal stuff.  Phew…

February 25
Yesterday I turned an old twin flannel sheet into two crib sheets for Emma.  I just put it on her bed and I am so happy that my sweetie will have such warm, soft sheets now.

February  28
Emma is 18 months today and decided to impress us with some new speech skills.  She said “I love you” at breakfast and a little while later she and I had this conversation: “Mommy, I go” (downstairs with the older two).  No Emma, you can’t go downstairs.  “Why?”.  SERIOUSLY??!!  You are too young to be asking why yet!

Lily’s BD countdown begins.  Cupcakes just came out of the oven and decorations will be made later today…