Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Goodbye 2008

Wow, hard to believe, isn't it? Tomorrow we'll be in a new year. This was a great year for me, most memorably because I became a momma for the first time. Speaking of that special guy, he turned 8 months old on Sunday! Hard to believe this little guy is 8 months old already! Two bottom teeth, pulling mom's hair, loves to try new foods, army crawling and flirting! Lots of new noises, too, including what sounds to us like, "hi" "da da" & "ba bye".
I'm looking forward to the new year, though! As far as resolutions go... Of course I would like to eat healthier, exercise more, read more books, do a better job at keeping in touch with friends, but I'm not going to put a lot of pressure on myself for any of those things. Just going to try to stay in the moment and be the best mom, wife, teacher, etc. that I can be.
Another thing that's coming to a close today is my 366 day photo-a-day challenge. I've posted them all on Flickr throughout the year. I did miss a day here and there, but I think that I did pretty well. I don't think that I necessarily became a better photographer, but I do think I documented our everyday life and became more aware of those moments that were photo opportunities. Decided it would be appropriate to end with a self-portrait (and my new darker hair).

Monday, December 29, 2008

First Christmas

Lachlan's first Christmas was a great one! Lots of time with family in Des Moines and Iowa City, and so many thoughtful and fun gifts. I haven't scrapped a 12x12 page in what feels like months so I wanted to make sure I got this one done right away before I forgot everything that happened. Hope you & yours had a wonderful Christmas, too!

Monday, December 22, 2008


This morning L decided that his spoon was much more interesting than breakfast. I think he's ready to start feeding himself a bit! (and I am so glad that I painted that one wall red, it makes for nice high chair photos!)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

4 more days until Christmas!

The days fly by even faster during these holiday weeks, don't they? I've been busy working on finishing up shopping and making Christmas gifts (hmm, still getting ready to *start* making a few?), baking, and hanging out with mom and Bethany while they were here for a visit.
Auntie Bethany was working on getting Lachlan to crawl while she was home (to her cell phone of course, such a modern baby). He's not up on all fours, but he is army crawling pretty well - here's a video.

Been kinda keeping up with my December Daily book, and trying to remember that I can just have a photo from the day + a few words, even if what we did wasn't especially festive or exciting.
Hope you are all enjoying the season and keeping warm this weekend!

Saturday, December 13, 2008


I think baking (and tasting) is one of the best things about Christmastime. I volunteered myself to bring dessert to my inlaws' holiday party tonight, it was a good excuse to try some new recipes. I made Elise's yummy peppermint cookies and I tried some of the Real Simple "bake ahead" cookies. That means that I made the dough/batter earlier this week and froze it until this morning when I had time to bake them all. Very easy and helpful. Here are the yummy links for you -

Peppermint cookies (be careful though, I burned my finger on some molten-hot melted peppermint!)
Lemon Glazed cookies
Ginger Chocolate Chip bars
Pecan Snowballs
I haven't tried these yet, but I hope to sometime soon - Raspberry Pinwheels
And of course, Lachlan was his charming self, hanging out in the high chair and chatting with me while I baked (ok, he did do a little napping, too). Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Action shot for Jess

Here's the tag blanket in action. They're about 12" square and have
cute fabric on one side and fuzzy soft stuff on the other. Hard to get
an action shot that's not blurry. :)

Snow Day!

Always a nice surprise to have a few extra free hours that you didn't know were coming. I am SO glad that we don't have to leave the house for any reason today, it looks yucky out there! I'm enjoying the snow day by working on Christmas cards, making this soup in the crockpot, videochatting with grandma, and hanging out with the sweetiepie pictured above (he's already into his Christmas presents, little stinker!). Oh, and listening to some new favorites, and old favorites. Hopefully making a little progress on a clean house and a couple custom order ribbon blankets, too.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

So glad that the weekend is here! Not sure if it was the preschoolers being all cooped up with the cold weather, or my lack of sleep for a few nights in a row due to L's teething, but I was definitely ready for some downtime.

I always thought that these tag blankets were a little bit silly - until I noticed that Lachlan looks for the tag on almost every toy and starts playing with it/sucking on it - so I decided to make one for him, and another for a new baby gift. They were so much fun to make that I whipped up a few to take to Home Ec Workshop to sell - so if you need a Christmas gift for a baby check them out, or let me know.

Speaking of Home Ec & Christmas shopping, they are having a Handmade Gift Sale today and tomorrow (10-5 today, noon-5 Sunday). You should check it out! Wendy and I are headed over there this morning, and I can't wait to see what they've put together. I know that lots of other shops down in that neighborhood are also having holiday events and free gifts, so avoid the mall and find some unique gifts!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

A tooth!

A tooth has arrived and it is so exciting! I guess it just seems like one of those giant milestones, the first tooth. To be honest, you can hardly see the little bit of white poking through his bottom gum, but you can definitely feel it and that explains the general grouchiness and lack of sleeping around here for the past couple days.
I added some photos to my December daily album. It is nice to have it all put together and I can just pop in some photos and journaling. I'm looking forward to recording L's first holiday season, since neither of us will remember it very well in a few years. :) I have seen SO many of these coming across in posts from other scrapbookers in my Google Reader - the flickr group has almost 400 members! We'll see how I'm keeping up with it in a couple weeks, but right now it seems pretty managable.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Hello, winter.

Not sure how I feel about you arriving, but I did enjoy the sticky snow on our trees Sunday morning! Looked like a winter wonderland, just in time for December to begin - now if we can just avoid the ice!

I think I have craft ADD right now, so many ideas for projects and handmade gifts, but so little time to work on them. I keep bouncing from project to project but not finishing many - yet. Two that are in progress (that I can share) are a December daily mini-album (oh, Ali, always with the inspiring ideas) and a garland for one of our Christmas trees, which is mostly decked out with handmade (and soft, for the nearly mobile baby in the house) ornaments. Good luck with all your holiday preparations!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Lachlan's stocking

I've been working on the embroidery on this for days and days (little moments here and there) and yesterday I took it in to Home Ec so that Codi could help me figure out how to sew in the satin lining (it was so easy! but many thanks for the guidance!). I am SO happy with how it turned out. It definitely looks homemade, but in this case, I think that's a good thing. Looking forward to all the many Christmas mornings ahead of us!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving! We had a short, but fun trip to Des Moines. Lachlan got passed around to everyone and had a little taste of pumpkin pie.

Sorry to be such a bad blogger, I've been using almost all my spare minutes for sewing projects. I'll be back to share tomorrow!

Oh, and this video is for everyone who thinks Lachlan is always happy. I couldn't resist. Ha ha, he's getting possessive!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Cindy asked to see my embroidered button. Isn't he cute? He's going on Lachlan's stocking (working on it right now - I hope to have some photos to share of that in a few days)

And.. a few of my favorite pages from a recent minibook. Nothing fancy, but I love these photos of Lachlan and the pumpkins!

Friday, November 14, 2008

a new(ly finished) quilt

So, I have actually had the fabric pieces for this quilt for a long, long time, but I finally got them pieced together into this quilt. It is a gift for a special baby who will be making his arrival next week. It's so satisfying to finish a quilt, now I'm wanting to try one of these... such a fun pattern!

In other crafty news, I took an embroidered button class at Home Ec with Wendy and I think I'm addicted (thanks alot Codi! LOL). I'm making a sweet little Rudolf button that will become part of Lachlan's Christmas stocking.

And of course, my head is swirling with handmade Christmas gifts. We'll see how much time I end up having for all that. I will definitely be making use of this awesome tutorial list, though!

Monday, November 10, 2008

new layouts

Took a trip to Des Moines this weekend to visit and got to make some pages with recent photos, not to mention a fair amount of shopping. After being at the mall Saturday and picking up a few Christmas gifts, it is definitely my goal to avoid the mall (especially on Saturdays) until after the holidays, and to get my gifts picked out as soon as possible. I will probably making a fair amount and ordering a few online, too, so that's the plan. It will be here before we know it!
Getting excited to take a button embroidery class at Home Ec on Wednesday with Wendy. Also thinking about how to make a waterproof mat to go underneath L's new high chair, which sits on light-colored carpet. Something that can catch the food and cleans up easily. I'm thinking oilcloth might work. Any ideas - and how big do you think it needs to be? Plus, I really want to make one of these growth charts. So cool.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

I voted

Tag, you're it!

So, Zhenia tagged me about two weeks ago, but between Halloween festivities and being without internet, I'm just getting around to it. And since I've been up awhile with a baby who doesn't know about daylight savings time, this seems like a good time for it. These are actually so hard for me to come up with, but I like reading everyone else's, so I'll play along ;) Without further ado, here are 6 random things about me -

1. When I was a little girl I collected all things unicorn.

2. My ancestry is almost completely Norwegian and my husband’s is English and some other things, so… we picked an Irish name for our boy. ‘Cause we like it. ;)

3. One of my brothers and my sister share the same birthday, but 7 years apart (ok, technically that’s not about me, but kind of interesting, hmm?)

4. My favorite flavor of ice cream is Mint Chocolate Chip

5. I took drum lessons in junior high but didn’t take it farther than that. Wish I could play an instrument now. Especially the guitar or the piano.

6. I find washing dishes relaxing.

I tag
& Elizabeth (Click the link so you can check out her cool new company!)
Let's hear your 6 random things, ladies!

Monday, November 03, 2008

A little Fall photo shoot

I couldn't resist taking some photos with this outfit, the warm afternoon sun and the lovely Fall colors.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Thursday, October 30, 2008

6 months old!

Sorry for the lack of updates, we've been without internet at home since last Sunday (after the wind blew our receiving dish sideways). In the past week I hosted a baby Halloween party (extra cute & fun) and Bill hosted an Oktoberfest party (festive & a little crazy). But the big news is that this cute guy is now 6 months old! We visited the pediatrician and L is very tall for his age (95th percentile!) so we may have a basketball player on our hands... Also we've been starting solid foods and he seems to be enjoying it. I'm making most of the food so far, it's so easy with the little food processor that we got for Christmas last year.

Monday, October 20, 2008


Hanging out with... "one of the cutest babies of all time" (a quote from a couple sitting behind us at dinner the other night)

Admiring... a new quilt, handmade by Great Grandma O that just arrived in the mail today

Listening... new music from Nikka Costa and Ingrid Michaelson, two of my favorite voices.

Working on... a layout with this sweet photo Aunt Bethany took, and a thank you card for the quilt.
Contemplating... finishing the journaling in my "week in the life" album, making a swashbuckling baby pirate hat, doing the dishes, searching for my Halloween decorations, going to the grocery store...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

hmmm, let's see...

We had a wonderful time on our little road trip to Decorah. As you can see, the leaves were beautiful, the weather was unseasonably warm, and we got to visit Bethany and see lots of great art on the studio tour. I even brought home a new piece of pottery and an amazing 3D collage piece. We stayed at the lovely Dug Road Inn and ate dinner (and lunch the next day) at La Rana.

Working on the little guy's Halloween costume tonight, which involves sewing a pair of baby pants. All I can say is that I'm not going to be sewing all our clothes any time soon, but they will work ok. Getting excited about all the other costume details, though!

We started feeding L rice cereal last night - he seems to be enjoying it so far. Feeling excited & nervous at the same time about starting solids - I want to make sure we do it the "right" way and hoping he won't be allergic to anything...

Think this is such a cool idea - My Day, Yesterday - I might have to try that soon.

My friends Cindy & Shelly have recently started a kit club called Sweet Tooth Scrapbooking and Shelly is hosting a giveaway on her blog. Check it out!

Looking forward to digging into my recently arrived October RVA kit soon!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

for your viewing pleasure

Nothing starts the weekend out right like a baby giggling (you can see him grabbing for the camera at the end - that's a much desired toy, along with my iPhone and the kitty's tail). We're also thoroughly enjoying the "jumperoo" via Craigslist - this video was taken over a week ago and he's already much more skilled at it.

In other random updates -
- We're headed to Decorah this weekend to visit Bethany and take in the NE Iowa Artist Studio Tour. Looking forward to seeing that lovely area in all its Fall loveliness.
- Managed to come down with some kind of sore throat yuckiness - what I feel like is sleeping but unfortunately the sore throat makes me cough = not sleeping = more sore throat.
- I've printed my photos for my "Week in the Life" album but probably won't get to putting it together until next week. Gotta do it soon before I forget everything, since I didn't do any note-taking.
- Enjoying that there is good t.v. again for us to watch after L. goes to bed - especially happy for Amazing Race, Pushing Daisies, and the new HBO show True Blood. Sad that Project Runway is almost over, who do you think will win it?? I think I'm rooting for Leanne, even though she doesn't have much of a personality, love her designs.

Have a good weekend all!

Sunday, October 05, 2008

back from Philadelphia

We had a great (but fast!) trip to Philadelphia. Unfortunately, we didn't get to do as much sightseeing there as I had hoped we would - there just wasn't time. We got in late in the afternoon on Friday (no thanks to our confusing Expedia itinerary) and took the train into downtown. Then we met up with another couple for dinner at Morimoto's (of Iron Chef fame). Oh yes, it was delicious.
Lachlan is a great little traveler... He loves looking around and checking everything out - and definitely giving out smiles to anyone who will give him a smile. One of the places we did spend some time was the Reading Terminal Market, just around the corner from our hotel. It was so cool - full of little food shops.
Saturday was the wedding - which was so beautiful and unique. Lots of lovely and thoughtful details. We enjoyed reconnecting with some of Bill's friends from high school and their significant others. (contrary to this photo, they didn't get married at the market, but we did run into them during their professional photo session after the ceremony)
So tonight finishes up my photo piece of Ali's Week in the Life project. I wish that I had taken more photos - especially of the little daily details in our life, but it can get hard to do that with a little one! I am looking forward to putting together a smallish album about our week. Still deciding what form it will take...

Thursday, October 02, 2008


The beginning of the day & the end of the day with lots of running, cleaning and packing between. Tomorrow we head out on a family adventure to Philadelphia - hopefully to be blogged from the iPhone. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Still here - one of those running around, groceries, gas, laundry, haircut kind of days. Snacking on Target brand "Zen Party" trail mix. Whoa, yum. Hope everyone is having a happy Tuesday - hard to be gloomy with all this sunshine, I think!