Saturday, October 26, 2013

Mail Holder

My husband and I have been working on this little project for way too long now but we finally finished it this week! It really shouldn't have taken as long as it did but we just kept putting off getting the things we needed for it and our weekends were always many excuses, haha. But now I finally have my awesome new mail holder!

Here is how we made it!

              We bought this piece of wood from Home Depot for about $5, give or take. I stained it (my first time staining something...not quite as easy as I thought it would be but it turned out really nice).

A few months later...
I painted a baby food jar and used some leftover (from 2 years ago) wedding flowers for a little decor to put at the top of the mail holder. 

Next we found the letter "F" (for our last name) and I painted and covered it in fabric. I'm normally not enough of a perfectionist to do something quiet like this but I forced myself to take my time and I really like how it turned out. 

It was my husband's idea to use hinges as the holders for the mail...he's so creative. It was really hard to find ones we liked but we found them and I love how the whole thing turned out!

Ta-da! There you have it! A super simple, cute mail holder! 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Here's a blog with some great toddler activity ideas mommyish and below are a couple new ones that I tried with Layla over the weekend.

I made some super simple things for Layla to play with...the ones in the second picture are a little advanced for her right now at 13 months old but she'll get there :)  In addition to the 'sewing' cards I cut out a circle and then cut a hole in the middle and gave her a popsicle stick. This is a great way to work on hand-eye coordination and Layla got the stick through the hole in just a couple of tries! I was so proud! It's such a simple, cheap way to entertain and these were all things I had laying around.

 Here are some photos from the last week for you to enjoy 

Labor Day at Grandma and Grandpa's 

Enjoying our Saturday together 

Layla loved all her Daddy playtime she got this past weekend 

Playing peek-a-boo

She's Miss Independent now and loves to help herself to her food. I'll have to learn not to leave it out! 

Having fun swinging at Grandma and Grandpa's

Lunch at Culvers with Nana and Papa - she was showing Nana her 'ta-da' trick 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Cheap Toddler Activities

I've been stuck in a rut lately, not knowing what to do to entertain Layla. She stays pretty happy with her toys and is good at entertaining herself but now that she's really, really soaking up things throughout the day I feel like new activities would be good. For her and I both because, lets face it, the day can get a little boring if all we do is sit on the floor and play with the same toys all day. 

In my search for new activities I went to Pinterest, of course. I usually use what I find as more of a guide and put my own spin on things. I saw on The Activity Moms blog the idea to fill a bowl with rice and give your toddler a small cup and funnel to use to play with. Instead of rice, which we actually like to eat, I used some beans, that we don't eat (unless canned and ready to go). 

Layla had fun with the beans but mainly just wanted to eat them so this activity was cut very short. I tried to encourage her to play and not eat but it didn't work, haha. Something to keep in mind for when she's older. Hopefully she'll outgrow putting everything in her mouth! 

I also made some animal flashcards to help me teach her animal sounds and recognition. She loves animals! Her favorites are cats, dogs, polar bears and ducks. (A little random, but that's our family!) 

My wonderful designer husband put the pictures together nicely in InDesign and I printed them off and cut them with my handy mini paper cutter from my MIL. I need to borrow my moms laminator bc after just a few minutes with them Layla has them pretty bent up (and I printed on card stock). 

After we went through all the cards a few times I pulled up some animal sounds on YouTube and she loved that! It was a great way for her to make the connection of sound with the animals and to see the animal on the card and on my phone. This activity was definitely successful. 

And there you have it! Super cheap, super easy entertainment for your toddler! 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Sorry for the absence

Lots has happened in the last few weeks!  We've been to Wichita to marry off Emily, celebrated Layla's 1st birthday and Layla has reached a few big milestones!

Emily's Wedding

We had a great weekend in Wichita for Emily's wedding. I got lots of girl time with my friends from college and loved being a part of the wedding. We woke up in time to see the pretty sunrise on the 27th (wedding day and Layla's birthday)! Layla got to open a few gifts and I got some playtime in before I had to get ready for the day.
Me with my sweet birthday girl :)
Jenny and I (and our hubby's) got to stay at the same house together during the weekend. That was fun and perfect for the guys bc they got to hang out all day Saturday. 

The weather was absolutely perfect that day! The wedding party took some pictures outside and enjoyed the amazing July weather and then we got some "rest" and dinner before the ceremony at 7pm. 
Just before the ceremony
So much has changed since we graduated! It was so fun meeting each others babies!
Nancy came all the way from Hong Kong!

Layla playing with Sidney. They were so cute!
Layla did so good staying up way passed her bedtime two nights in a row. I was so proud and thankful! We had a great weekend! It was just over a little too quick. 

Layla's 1st Birthday

We had a great party for Layla and were even able to help out a sweet family who's little girl is in the hospital. She was born with Jeunes Syndrome which requires her to have surgery every 6months. We raised over $400 for her and her family to help with medical expenses! It was so awesome to be able to do something for them. (They're good friends of my in-laws). 

Enjoying her new soft blocks from Grandma and Grandpa
Fun new bubbles from mommy and daddy

She loves her new leapfrog puppy from Nana and Papa (she had just waken up from a nap, hence the wet, sweaty hair lol)


Today we made a fort to change things up a bit. She wasn't too terribly excited about it but I think she had fun :) it definitely won't be our last living room fort. 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

More Projects

We finally got up our new curtain in our bedroom! Before we just had a short black curtain. I think we'll still put it up behind this one so the sun doesn't come through so much but that will require hammering and Layla is asleep :) 

This one is a work in progress but Antony is going to make me a mail'll make more sense when its done :)  But I stained it this past weekend and really love the color! I'm excited to see the finished product. 

Layla is very picky about food these days and its hard to get her to eat vegetables that aren't in baby food puree form. I overheard a lady at the pool the other day say that she puts veggies in pancakes to get her kids to eat them so I thought I would give it a shot! The veggies were still a little too chunky but she ate it covered in applesauce! Still didn't fix the problem of me having to feed her but we'll get there. At least she's getting some form of veggies. I added some cinnamon and pear puree for sweetness and extra flavor...and I promise it looked better once it was cooked :) I just didn't get a picture of that.

Those are all the projects for now! Tomorrow the in-laws come up for the day and then Antony and I are going car shopping on Saturday! So excited!! We also celebrated 2 years of marriage yesterday with a little ice cream date while my sister and brother-in-law babysat. Layla got some fun playtime with them and her cousin Macey. 

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Red, White and Blue

I just wanted to share my dessert I made for tomorrow's 4th of July celebrations! My creations never turn out so pretty!! Although some are a little messy, I really like how they look! The filling is cheesecake flavored pudding, heavy whipping cream and almond extract. Next time I'll leave out the extract.

Here's the link to the recipe if you'd like to try them. I used cheesecake pudding instead of vanilla

Monday, July 1, 2013

More DIY Projects

With a couple '1st birthday' photo shoots coming up (Layla's and a friend of mine's daughter) I decided to get a new photo prop for the sessions.

I found this bench for $10 at Hobby Lobby and thought it would be PERFECT for little people to sit on or stand at for a pictures :)

I stained it (my first time using stain...) and here's how it turned out! Its a little darker than I wanted but I still like it. 

Layla and I (and my mom) made her 4th of July shirt today...Its slightly messy but I think that adds to the cuteness! 


In other news...Layla got her first pancake today. To make it 'healthy' I added a raspberry. *Side note: fruits like raspberries do not hold up well on skillets*

These girls LOVE animals and get so excited to see Jake and Riley at Grandma and Grandpa's. 

Monday, June 24, 2013

Finally making some more progress on decorating the place!

                                                                                                             Kitchen window AFTER
                                                                                                                   curtain $5 (KMart)
                  Kitchen Window BEFORE                                             tension rod $2 (Hobby Lobby)

New front door decor 
about $12 for paint, letter, ribbon, and stencil 
from Hobby Lobby

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Weekend Fun

We started the weekend off right with a much needed date night! We found an amazing Italian restaurant just a few minutes from our house and had a very, very delicious dinner and view. It was on top of a big hill so we had a nice view of the city/town of Parkville.  It was a lot pricier than we expected but well worth it because everything we ate was amazing! I really wanted to get dessert because I knew it had to be really good, too, but we were planning to go mini golfing and I really didn't want to be miserable, haha. 

I've been experimenting with making my own baby food this weekend...trying to figure out how to get Layla to eat more veggies. One combination she really liked was spinach and peaches! I will definitely be making more because she loved it! I pureed about 1/4 cup of spinach with an entire peach to help make it sweet and I'm so glad it was a success! Here she is licking the lid clean :) 

This evening we dropped by Kourtney and Chad's to return something of their's we had and we decided to all go to the park. After about 5 minutes we decided it was WAY too hot so we left and ended up ordering pizza and hanging out at their house. You may not be able to tell in this picture but Layla was sooo super sweaty, poor thing. 

To help cool off the kiddos we let them play in the water using Chad's homemade water sprinkler. It was perfect for them! 

We also got some family time playing in our little pool this weekend. 

Have a happy Monday! God Bless!