Thursday, January 8, 2015

A whole lotta change

I kind of forgot about this little blog baby. Our family has been super crazy. We moved, bought a 1960's "new" house, and welcomed a second boy to our household. 
I want to use this blog to chronicle our family's little moments from first steps and funny phrases to learning how to paint kitchen cabinets and wood paneling. Here's to raising two boys and making our little ranch a home. 

Sunday, September 15, 2013

treasure hunting

I have not always been into antiquing. My Mom is your typical Goodwill loving Mom and with five kids, she kind of had to be. My Dad is the typical (or maybe not so typical) sidewalk scrounger that just can't resist a slightly beat up, broken down, free item on the side of the road. I really became a junk enthusiast after college and I come by it honestly. I love browsing thrift, antique, sidewalks, yard sales, flea markets; you name it.
My brother and his girlfriend are welcoming a sweet baby boy, named Sebastian, into our family early October and I knew when I saw this little chair at a thrift store in Raleigh that it must be his.

At $5.00, this little gem was just the right price. I picked out some skull and cross bone fabric that I knew would match the nursery decor and googled "How to make an envelope pillow." I literally dusted off by sewing machine, spent 20 minutes relearning how to thread the needle and after about two hours I had covered a piece of foam with some fabric. The wood finish on the chair was actually not that hideous. My original plan was to just add a little cushion and paint a white "S" on the back of the chair to keep it pretty simple. I painted an "S" on the back of the chair using a Martha Stewart stencil and as soon as I went to peel the stencil off the entire "S"peeled off as well. I have a couple theories as to why that happened. First, I am an amateur stenciler and I stink at it. Secondly, the finish on the chair was way more lacquered  than I had anticipated. I scraped my original plan and sanded the entire chair down and primed it with a white spray paint primer. I then picked out a super awesome orange that screamed boy and painted that chair with happiness.

Look at how happy my child is sitting there eating his orange popsicle in that fantastically orange chair. Pure childhood bliss. Next stop on the chair train is where things got hairy. I had to work so my sweet husband told me he would add another coat to my chair. He texted me at work verifying that he had the right spray paint bottle before painting and the details are fuzzy whether I confirmed that bottle of spray paint or not, depending on who you ask. The bright happy orange chair got a coat of fire engine red spray paint and sadness ensued. The chair in my eyes was ruined and I had no time to fix it before the reveal. I moped around with angry eyes for about an hour before I just started sanding that baby (the chair, not the baby) down and beating it with a screwdriver to distress it mostly because I was getting out my frustration at the color mishap. The orange and red blended together like the perfect storm and something bad turned into something better than I could have planned for. 

I'm kind of in love and I almost wish Cole's name started with an "S" just so I could keep it. Here's to
accidental cuteness. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

long hair do care

I did it. I finally gave in and took Cole to get a haircut. His hair was beyond the nape of his neck and honestly he just looked a little too homeless even for my liking; and I like a little boy with some hair. I took him to a kid's salon called Snip-It's and with a $5.00 off coupon, the cut was pretty reasonable. I felt bad for the poor lady that had to listen to my child scream with wreck-less abandon for 20 minutes that I probably tipped her way more than I should have. Oh well, first time Mama problems.

Note the nice shaggy, unkept, trying to be hip look


I was shoving enough animal crackers and lollipops in his mouth to make him stop crying but not choke. Turns out, Cole can cry with animal crackers in his mouth. He did really well considering he was terrified of the whole situation.

His haircut very closely resembles a college freshman after an all night fraternity rush.

Monday, August 12, 2013

one year in

We moved almost exactly a year ago from Charlotte to Raleigh. In a way, I can't believe it has already been a year and the time has flown by so fast. In another way, it feels like we should be on to the next part of our journey now and our time in Raleigh should be over. I would definitely say that it took close to six months to feel comfortable in Raleigh and not use Google Maps every time I left the house. It took probably nine months before we stopped calling Charlotte "home" and it took a complete year to feel like we were settling in, we were making it in a new place and we actually (although hard to admit) were starting to let ourselves love Raleigh. Just for giggles, here are some plus and minuses about Raleigh that we have developed over the past year.


the park system is AMA-zing
the endless amount of story times available to children for free
the flea market (my husband and child would not agree)
being closer to other friends and family
cole gets to spend more time with dale
dale's wonderful opportunity to get his MBA
maria's pretty sweet job at wakemed
breweries galore
cole learned to walk, talk, crawl, and sit in time out here

renting a crappy little house
farther away from other friends and family
living in the "burbs"
one income vs. two
two hour car rides to concord with a toddler
not as many hole in the wall, delicious, one of a kind dining options

Anyway, truthfully we would live in Raleigh permanently. We are not opposed to living in this gorgeous city with plenty of activities and we do believe that it would be a great place to raise Cole and his future siblings. As a couple, we are open to living in so many big cities but our heart is honestly in Charlotte, although we are flexible. We believe that we will end up where we are supposed to be whether that be Charlotte, Raleigh, or some other fun city. You definitely won't find us living in a city any smaller than Raleigh, we can guarantee that. Change is good.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

cute little hot mess

We headed back to Charlotte about a month ago to meet with our favorite photographer, Laura Stout. She is so great with Cole and really takes the time to make him comfortable without being pushy. Well, with that said, our little guy was not having it and had no interest at all in showing Laura his good side. We met at Midtown Greenway in Charlotte and we thought Cole would love the fountains along the greenway. We were absolutely wrong and our thoughts and grand planning back fired terribly. Cole loved the fountains so much that he screamed every time we tried to take him away from the water to take some pictures. Hot Mess. Somehow we actually got some cute pictures. I think I even like the pictures of Cole screaming because he definitely is not always happy and I want to show his girlfriend in about 30 years that he was, and probably still will be in 30 years, stubborn. 

I'm pretty much in love with the last picture of our family. I know that Cole was most likely screaming in this picture even though you can't tell. It just looks so peaceful and calm against our usually crazy and strictly scheduled life. I love it. 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

time out

Dale loving refers to time out as "T.O." and we are all very familiar with the time out chair at our house. We started putting Cole in timeout when he was around a year old because he had a little bit of a hitting problem. Well, turns out now at almost 17 months old, our child likes timeout and has become accustomed to sitting in his time out chair in the hallway for 10 seconds at least two times a day. What do you do as a parent when your child likes timeout? We have absolutely no clue.
This is how it goes down: Cole hits us or swats his hand near our faces and then takes our hand and leads us to his time out chair. We hold his hands down, count to 10 and then make him hug us before leaving his T.O. chair. However, lately he has been trying to hit us again so he can sit in time out for round two or even round three. He will also fake swat at us and then want to go and sit in time out and I have to tell him that he was not being naughty and he does not have to sit in time out. Frankly, it is a little complicated. Dale and I never thought we wound have a child that wants to sit in time out but I guess we shouldn't complain and we should just roll with it. Also, it is kind of the cutest thing ever and at least we know Cole listens to us...sometimes.

Playing in time out

 Putting his animals in time out

Thursday, March 14, 2013

burlap style

I'm all about some crafting. I feel like I never have time between working 3 nights a week, chasing a very active 15 month old energizer bunny around, and having a well needed date night with my main man occasionally. I would not call myself an overly crafty person. I like to try new things and I am terrible at following really in depth directions. My good friends know that I have a very short attention span. I get distracted really easily if I don't understand something and I am really distracted when following directions. I like to skip to the end and just find a shortcut if at all possible. I am more of a watcher, adapter, and then a doer than a direction reader. The same goes with crafting and really complicated German board games. I like to sit down and make things my own when I find time which is a blessing and a curse because sometimes crafts turn out well and sometimes not so much. Oh well, the journey is always fun and my sweet husband always tells me the end result is "really nice", even if it isn't...swoon.

Anyway, I got 3 awesome coffee burlap bags when we went to the mountains with some friends in January for $2 a piece at a fabric store. I felt like I was practically stealing these awesome crafting supplies. I knew that I wanted to make pillows for Cole's playroom but I wanted them to be fun and colorful. I am not that great at sewing and I wanted to put a little spin on burlap pillows so I used yarn to stitch the pillows together. I had some old Ikea pillows that measured 18x18 that I just wrapped a piece of burlap that was 20x40 around and then stitched the edges. The project was fairly simple. I had to be careful that the yarn did not rip the edge of the burlap because it was delicate. I put the pillow inside the burlap while I pulled the edges close together and slowly stitched up all 4 sides. Each pillow from cutting the burlap to the final stitch took me about 2 hours. It was really fun and I still have 1 more burlap bag to use that may turn in to a dog bed for Rio, lucky girl.

The 2 matching pillows were on the front of the burlap bag and the "Cafes Do Brasil" was on the back of one of the bags. I still have one more "Cafes Do Brasil" pillow to make. 

Getting the full effect in the playroom. It looks clean but there are toys and ballpit balls everywhere beyond this picture.

I didn't try and match the yarn with the pillow. I thought it was more playful to just have lots of fun colors. 

The back of the "Cafes Do Brasil" pillow. I should have ironed them (if you can iron burlap). The stitching across the back is part of the original burlap bag which I thought was so neat. 

Little embellishment in the corner of the pillow that I thought added a little flare and it was too surprising to cut of when making the pillow.