Friday, December 14, 2012


It's been a while since I posted any projects on the blog.  (Actually, it's been a while since I posted anything at all!)

Moving into a larger home has left me thrifting more than my dear husband would like, but once the projects are finished, he's much less apt to object to my slight addiction.  :)
There are several things I forgot to take photos of; Jemma's new darling vanity/dresser and a cute little chair I intended to use in my sewing room, but seems to have made it's home in the family room, but other than that, I think these are it so far.
I gave this little nightstand a new look for our guest room.  It's painted a pale aqua and I added the applique on the top drawer and replaced the knobs. 

 This next project was a big one.  
That's a complete understatement.  
It took me MONTHS to complete.  
We found this table and chairs on craigslist and paid $150 for the table and 6 chairs.  Booya!  I know!  Smokin' deal.  Two of the legs were a little lot mauled from the previous owner's dogs, so I had to patch those up, sand and paint six chairs, reupholster them (which, by the way, I only finished the day before Thanksgiving because I had the help of my amazing father-in-law.  THANKS BEN!) And after sanding down half of the table top, I decided I wanted to just build a new top and only keep the legs.  So, after a couple of trips to Home Depot and disassembling the original table, Brandon and I built a new top, stained it, painted the legs, built a new apron and painted it, assembled it all and got it in the house the week before Thanksgiving.
I am so glad that is all done and that I don't have a garage full of furniture anymore or an empty dining room for that matter!  

 Before and After

I cannot tell you how pleased I am with how it all turned out.  The table is 8 feet long now and can easily seat 8-10 people.  Bring on the guests!!!  (Hint, hint.)
I definitely think I need to sew a larger Christmas runner for this baby.  That runner looks so teeny on there!

My most recent project was a pair of nightstands for me and Brandon's room.  I found these matching nightstands at our local goodwill for $19 a piece and just used the leftover paint and stain from the table, so it was a grand total of $38 for the pair.  AWESOME.  They have a funky smell still...I need to spray them down with lysol or something.  For now, they have dryer sheets inside...any ideas???

 I swear one of them was burned or whole side was almost completely black.  Maybe that's where the weird smell is from...
 Anyway,  here are the after shots.

 I actually did have to buy some black spray paint for the drawer pulls, so I guess that tacks on a couple dollars...still pretty inexpensive for large nightstands.

 It is SO nice to have our lamps off the floor and somewhere to set our alarm clocks!

And, I built this car.  lol!  Just kidding, duh.
We just FINALLY got a second vehicle.  JOY to the WORLD!  It's a 2011 Toyota Corolla and we love it.

So there you are...the last 5 months worth of projecting.  
I have to admit that while I'm working on a project, I can be a little cranky.  
It really is not all that fun.
It's mostly really hard work and going to bed with super sore muscles from sanding and lifting more than you should have in one day!
But, it's also giving new life to something possibly abused and neglected that's fun.
It's the satisfaction that comes when the project is complete that's awesome.  
So, I'm sure there will be many more projects in the future...sorry Brandon!  ;)
Let the happy times roll!


We were fortunate enough to have FAMILY come visit for the Thanksgiving holiday.  Brandon's parents and Grandma Ruth came and spent 4 days with us and we had a blast!
Their first full day with us we trecked over to the historical city of Savannah.  I say "trecked" because we had to take a semi-long detour due to traffic and then Jemma had to stop like 3 times to go potty.  Next time, she  cannot keep her thermos with her.  Sheesh!
When we arrived, we had a picnic lunch at a sketchy park (we had NO idea where we were going or where to start...the city was MUCH bigger than we had anticipated and, frankly, Brandon and I had not done enough research/planning before going.  We then decided it might be best to take a guided tour.  Best idea ever.  We rode a trolley and the driver was a wealth of information.  Next time we go we know exactly what we want to do, thanks to his knowledge.
On the trolley.  :)


We spent Thanksgiving Day primarily at home.  We had a full-fledged-feast with tons of leftovers.  I guess three additional adults do not eat as much as I anticipated ;)
The weather was gorgeous, so we spent a good amount of time outside riding bikes and drawing with sidewalk chalk.  :)

...And taking pictures...
which, believe it or not, I did not take enough of!  (Our SLR was and still is in the got dropped and now we get to fork over $*** big ones to get it repaired.  Merry Christmas to us!)

We were SO grateful to have family here for our first major holiday.  
Ben, Tina and Ruth for flying across the country to spend it with us!

Monday, November 5, 2012


The kids decided on a Harry Potter theme this year.  Carter was Harry, Gavin was Ron and Jemma was Hermione.  Cute little Hogwarts students, huh.  :)
Here they are before the ward Trunk-or-Treat

And here they are at the Trunk-or-Treat.  Gavin kept putting his bag on his head...I kinda looks like Frankenstein. ;)

We carved pumpkins for Family Home Evening the Monday before Halloween.  Brandon informed me that no one looks very good in this photo, and he's right, but this is the ONLY picture I have been in since we moved to Georgia.  I just wanted you all to know that I am still a member of this family.  

We had a spiderweb dip with chips for dinner before Trick-or-Treating on Halloween.  I know it doesn't sound like much of a dinner, but my kids LOVE 7 layer dip and I wanted them FULL before they went off to collect MORE candy.

Ready to Trick-or-Treat.  
(Gavin would not cooperate with me, so I didn't get a picture of him alone.)  Another side note, we are quite aware that Harry's glasses were not taped together on the side, nor did they use duck tape.  Those glasses really were broken...five minutes after we got them they were broken and I was not going to try to find another pair.  

Some friends from church came over and joined Brandon and the kids trick-or-treating in our neighborhood.  They were gone for a little over an hour and I sat in utter silence at home (aside from the occasional trick-or-treater) and it was complete bliss.  I think we could make that a Halloween tradition.  :)
Left to right, back to front: Brad and Brandon in their awesome bird hats, Aubrey, Jemma, Courtney, Carter and Gavin.

When they got back, I met everyone at the door, but quickly noticed Gavin was missing.  After a brief look around, we found him in the dining room, sitting on the floor surrounded by his loot.  He wasted NO time digging into his treats.
These kids got more candy than we will probably EVER eat.  They're wittlin' away at it...(And I am not opposed to sneaking a piece of chocolate or two from their bags daily.)  :)

Speed Entry #2

I am ready to get up-to-date.  So, here goes:
the seasons are finally changing and the lawn mowing is tapering off...I still had to throw this picture in cuz Gavin LOVES when Brandon mows the lawn.

The boys ventured out in the sprinklers one morning after Jem had already gone to school.  It was still relatively humid then and the water felt REALLY GOOD.  I was even in it.  :) 

Gavin has been attempting to potty train himself.  No, I didn't phrase that wrong.  I have been doing very little to encourage him to use the toilet.  I am just not ready for all the wet/poopy underwear/pants/floors/etc. He, however thinks he's just as big as Jemma and Carter and wants to use the potty AND wipe himself.  Very. Messy.  I'm sure I should be encouraging him and just goin' for it full-throttle.  I just can't seem to get motivated...maybe next week.  ;)

And, the boys continue to use our bed as bouncy house.  Who cares if there's a trampoline in the backyard...

Bad parenting moment...Gavin took a razor to his head in the shower.  Luckily, he did not draw blood; he just ended up with a SUPER SHORT hair cut afterwards.  (Don't worry, we have since remembered to remove the razor if he decides he wants a shower instead of a bath.)

Brandon was gone to Ohio for a week for some training.  We all missed him, and this pictures pretty much sums up how we all felt when he got back!  :)

The kids were off of school for a week for Fall Break and we stayed BUSY.  One of our outings was to a cute little nature preserve.  I don't know why I didn't take pictures of animals, but here is the best I got of the three together...WHY WON'T JEMMA LOOK AT THE CAMERA!!!

 Jemma's school did a book character parade last month.  Very cute.  

We visited the Georgia State Fair...very impressive.  We only went on two rides (cuz they are CRAZY EXPENSIVE), but thoroughly enjoyed the exotic animal petting zoo, complete with a giraffe named Melman, and the racing pigs.  SOOOO cute!
The base also hosted a family fun day of sorts so we hit that up and the kids played on bouncy houses, ate icees and went home exhausted.  

 Carter's school had a fall festival the week before Halloween.  They went on a hayride, shucked corn, had their faces painted, tasted pumpkin muffins and picked out a pumpkin to take home.  
This is Carter with his sweet friend, Kylie.
I'm sure I'm leaving something out...I'll put it in the next post if I come across anything.  :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Speed entry...

I was talking to my sister Sharee on the phone the other day and mentioned that I had become SO FAR behind on blogging that I didn't even want to do it anymore.  There was just no way I was ever going to unburry myself from the ridiculous number of blog posts I had neatly sitting in files on the desktop.  She, being a very wise sister, suggested I do a "speed entry" where-in I choose one picture from each outing from the past month+, post them, and call it good.  So here goes.
 Brandon's grandma came to visit us in August and was a trooper with these guys...even got on the trampoline with them.  :)
 During her visit, we spent a day at Stone Mountain.  (Could've done a fully blown post with like 20+ pictures of this trip...but for the sake of catching up, I'll spare you all the nitty-gritty.)  Suffice it to say, it was a super fun place and we could have easily spent more than just a day there.  Jemma even did a full blown ropes course for the first time.  Very cool place!
 We visited Andersonville, an old Confederate prison.  Very sobering experience.  Again, I wish I were more on top of things so I could say more about this experience.  Made me so sad for all the lives lost unnecessarily during war.

Spent a day at Six Flags with new friends, the Winward family.  SO FUN!
The dads took the older kids on a rafting ride and they all came back drenched.  Kinda glad I stayed behind with Gavin.  ;)
Gavin has managed to acquire a few more facial injuries...we need to wrap that poor boy in bubble wrap and make him wear a helmet all. day. long.

Carter started Pre-K.  (That's what they call preschool out here...but it's NOT preschool.  They expect these little guys to be reading by the end of the year.  Whatever.  That is SO not a priority for me.)  We finally found a school that wasn't ALL DAY.  I know!  Is that not the weirdest thing ever???  All day pre-k???  I cried the first day I dropped him off and he's still adjusting to leaving home for 3 hours each day, but I'd say it's all for the best.  Otherwise all day kindergarten would come as a real shock for this homebody!

Carter and Jemma in school each morning has given me some much needed one-on-one time with this little tyke who I am realizing is not so little anymore.  :(  He is such a happy, easy-going kid.  SO FUN!  He will do anything with me.  Yard work, projects, errands, baking, you name it, he's down.  And if he gets bored, he just snags a bin of toys and plays contently while I finish up whatever needs finishing.

I might have to do one more of these "speed entries" to get me current, but that gets us through the middle of September for now.
I'm feeling better already!  :)   

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Teeth: The Good - The Bad - and The Gray

 We've had a lot of tooth business goin' on around this house during the last month.
The Good:
Jemma lost her two top front teeth.  They were both just dangling from her mouth in their final days  One she allowed me to remove...the 2nd, however, she decided she didn't want anyone to touch.  So, she went to bed with it hanging by a thread and awoke the next morning with it gone...and I mean GONE.  We're pretty sure she swallowed it cuz there was no sign of it dried blood and no tooth.
Her toothless grin sure is cute!

The Bad:
About a week and a half after we moved in, Gavin was jumping on the couch (which he does incessantly despite our constant reminders that we do not jump on the furniture).  He decided he would take a flying leap off the couch and landed on the coffee table...with his mouth.  Blood everywhere.  When I pulled his lip back to get a look at the damage, one front tooth was shoved backward and the other forward...both VERY loose.  I was without a car (ya, and we still just have one car.  It's awful!) and could tell he need immediate attention. So, I called and called and called Brandon's cell phone.  No answer.  All the while holding a screaming 2 year old.  I had no phone number for the clinic he works at (he'd only been there a couple days)...looked online - couldn't find anything...finally, 45 minutes later, he walks in the door.  His squadron had PT that afternoon and was playing ULTIMATE FRISBEE!  I was a wreck.  Thankfully, Brandon knew who to call and we were able to get Gavin into the dentist on base.  Unfortunately, there was really nothing they could do...just wait; hope they tighten back up without any infection.
Here's a profile and front shot a couple days after the incident.  He was so swollen for a good week.

The Gray:
Fortunately, his teeth have tightened back up and he didn't end up with any infection.  Unfortunately, those two teeth are turning gray.  I guess that's a small price to pay though.  He's lucky to still have those teeth!

You would think that after a traumatic experience like that, he would stop jumping on and off of furniture.  He is at this very moment flying off my bed into a giant pile of pillows and he still jumps on the couches.  Crazy kid!