craft: bowtie & suspender onesie

Well, we have about 2 more months until Little Guy (baby #3) arrives.  I’ve never been big on the “take-home” outfit when you bring a newborn home from the hospital because:
1) The shirts they give you at the hospital are free.
2) Fancy outfits usually don’t fit babies, cost too much and they only wear them once.
3) They have that funny belly button thing going on, which makes fancy clothes difficult.

However, Third-Child-Syndrome is in full swing, and this little guy is getting the short end of the stick in so many other ways, that I thought he deserved at least one cool thing. So far his “room” is a changing table in Big Brother’s room and he’ll probably live in a Pack ‘N’ Play for a while.

I came across some blank white onesies that we never used with Big Brother, so I thought they needed to become Little Guy’s take-home outfit.  I found this tutorial online and there are TONS of these on Etsy and Pinterest… selling for $20 a PIECE!

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I’m not a professional seamstress, so my version is way simplified and not exact… partially because I’m not a perfectionist when it comes to sewing, and because I still know he will probably only fit in them once and then I’ll pass them on to someone else.  I had the onesies already, and the ribbon, so my only cost was a 97 cent swatch of gray/black fabric and $2.50 for the snaps.



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But… they were fun to make!  And they’ll be worth the 2 photos that we’ll get of him in them… before he spits up or poops on them.  :-)

Ready for you to be here, Little Man!

craft: palette wood garden

It’s Spring! (finally)

Spring makes me want to be outside, and garden… and do crafts!  There’s just something about warmer weather that makes me happy and motivated and inspired to do “stuff.”

I had some extra palette wood from a project at our daughter’s school.  I had taken a full palette and just cut it in half with a circular saw, so I had a piece left, and was wondering what to do with it.

Here’s what the leftover piece turned into: (Thanks, Matt, for not complaining too much about the pieces of unfinished craft that I have lying around the house everywhere.  :-)


Plants, $4 at Walmart.  Buckets, $1 a piece in the Target Dollar Aisle.  (love that place)  We have a huge yard to plant in, but with a new baby on the way, I figured I wouldn’t want the upkeep of the full garden this year, so I just settled for basil and some begonias.

My other idea was to use the palette as a towel or blanket hanger, which I still think would be great in a living room, playroom or bathroom. Maybe I’ll do that with the other palette.  Stay tuned for that final product.


I love making stuff.  :-)
Like my mom says, “It’s cheaper than therapy.”

a girl and her horse


Growing up, my aunt always had a horse. Over the years I got to ride, brush and take care of her horses while she went on short trips, or she’d invite me to come out and ride.




This week while we were in town again (where she lives) we got to go out and visit the stables again.  She still has a horse and we took our kids with a big bag of carrots. :-)  Her horse, Shadow, was very happy about that, as was his neighbor Tuxedo.



The kids were anxious at first – to let his lips touch their hands while eating carrots.
Then she sat on Shadow….


… and our daughter fell in love.

They got to walk around a bit.
Then she didn’t want to get down.


My husband works at a camp, so I foresee many visits to the barns in our future, and get ready, Laura (wrangler), Heidi is going to be your sidekick from now on. :-)

what sabbath looks like

About a year or two ago, my husband and I decided it was time to start practicing some type of Sabbath.  It’s something that Americans are not very good at doing, but after going to Israel twice (for me) and 10+ times for my husband, we were hit with the idea of how important it is to have a day of rest.  Watching our Jewish friends practice it there, how strictly they hold to it and protect it, is pretty convicting.

You’d think we’d know that by now… it’s in the Bible from the very first book, just after the very first chapter.  He commands it of us.  (You know, one of the “Big Ten.”)  Jesus practiced rest.

So, we started doing it.  For us, it has meant more like a half day of rest.  We chose Sunday afternoons as our time of Sabbath.  We attend church, we eat lunch (out usually, which means no dishes!), and then we just rest.  Until dinner.

That rest looks like:
Playing with kids in the backyard
“Working” on hobbies or things that are fun for us
Sitting on the couch and doing nothing!
Reading – our own books, or to our kids
Having grown-up talk time while our kids play quietly/nap in their rooms

It also means that dinner is usually:
Popcorn :-)
A crockpot meal that was started at breakfast or lunchtime
… or something easy like Breakfast for Dinner

It also means that this is what Sabbath looks like…



If you know me, and you have read The Five Love Languages, then you know that my love language is a clean kitchen. :-)  So for the first LONG time that we tried this, this drove me crazy.  I couldn’t sit still when there was stuff to do around me.  That sink full of dishes… I was nuts.  I’ve even tried making sure that on Saturday nights before we went to bed, that the house was spotless so I knew that Sunday would come and that sink wouldn’t be staring me in the face saying, “Haha, you can’t clean me today!” (Okay, I still do that sometimes)

Things have changed a little.  I don’t stress about it as much.  I admit, when I went into the kitchen tonight and saw that sink, my first thought was still, “Why are there so many dishes in the sink right now?”  But then I quickly remembered… Sunday.  Sabbath.  It’s okay if there are dishes in the sink.  And I don’t have to do them right now.

And wow.  Can I say what a freeing thing it is?  I know the dishes will be there later tonight, or tomorrow.  And I know that it’s okay that there were toys still on the coffee table when we tucked the kids in.  That wasn’t our job today.  Our job was to rest.

It’s a spiritual thing, for sure, but I’d say I’ve learned even more from it just in the realm of “practical” than spiritual.  It just makes sense to allow yourself to rest and enjoy.

Tomorrow, I can do those dishes with joy, knowing that today I rested.

Have you practiced a time of Sabbath rest?  What did/does it look like?  What have you learned from it? 

dream job

This is the view when I’m lying in bed at night.


Marriage license, family photos, our wedding vows with a picture from when we were dating…

The other night, I realized that this particular picture frame is at least 13 years old.

How did I remember that?

Because, as not many people know, in college I studied to get a degree in architecture in order to go on and get a Master’s in 3D animation.  My dream job was to work at Pixar or Big Idea (Veggie Tales).    I remember that picture frame because I entered one of my 3D designs in an art competition, in that frame.  (I think I got 3rd place or something, I don’t remember.)

Back then, the frame would have looked like this…


That’s the guy I had in the frame before. (yes, I know… that pencil is HUGE.)


I can’t say that I don’t miss that dream every once in a while: when I wonder where I’d be today (California? eh… no thanks.), when I watch a Pixar movie, or a behind-the-scenes look at how they make movies, or when I see “Saving Mr. Banks” in the theaters and am reminded of how much I love Walter Disney.

But you see, I’ve always had 2 dream jobs.  The one in the frame 13 years ago, and the one in the frame right now.

I don’t have 3 full-length animated films to add to my resume, but I do have a photo that holds the 3 most precious things to me. (soon to be 4!)

Looking at that frame a few nights ago, I thought, “Would I trade those 3 people for the fame/money/whatever/whatever of making movies? (and spending all day in front of a computer?)”

My answer is there when I turn around from this computer…





The answer is no.
No… I wouldn’t trade it.


learning to be and do

A few weeks back I had a day all to myself with no kids, so I treated myself to a trip to the local antique store.  Is that a pregnancy craving… antique shopping?  Cause I have that.

Anyway, I found this fun little wood-framed window screen.  I didn’t know what he was for, but I needed to bring him home with me. :-)

In the meantime, I found myself thinking about all the things I want our kids to know (practical stuff) and be (character stuff) so I was wanting to make some type of visual for them to remember our behaviors and virtues.

Hello, little window screen.


I decided to focus on 4 practical tasks each month, and one character quality per month, that I’m taking from Galatians and the fruit of the Spirit list.  With each “fruit,” I looked up a few words that describe it and put them as a definition (one that kids would understand).


On the crafty side, the screen is metal, so it was great for magnets. I covered the fronts of the magnets with fabric (glued) and made a little pocket that could hold the future cards.  The cards, I just printed on the computer and cut out.  Voila.

I’m hoping that this will encourage us to work on our character, as well as simplify our learning; we can still work on other behaviors, but we’ll be especially intentional to learn and work on these 4 practical skills, then move on to 4 more… and more independence!

What behaviors or skills would you include on a list for kids under the age of 10?  Also, if you’re interested in a pdf download of the cards I made, let me know!

girly girl… maybe?

I lay out my daughter’s clothes for the week to save us some before-school-morning-craziness.  It’s been one of the best things I’ve done for our morning routine before school.

She has never been a girly girl.  Not interested in dressing up, cute hairdos, playing mommy with her dolls… none of that.  She loves little plastic animals (“her guys”) and stuffed animals, and playing in the dirt. (i love that.)

She got some lip gloss in her stocking this year, and last week she wanted to put it on every day.  What?!
This morning, I put her clothes on her bed to get ready, and she came out to the kitchen with a different shirt and pants in her hand, and said, “Can I wear this shirt instead?”

It wasn’t what I would have picked for her for school (for me, yes.  a ringer tee and comfy pants) but the fact that she had an opinion and wanted to choose… I said yes.  It made me smile.

It wasn’t a twirly dress or tutu, or hair bow with streaming ribbons, but I love that she’s taking ownership and she wants to make a style for herself.   We aren’t sure of the gender of baby #3 (3 more weeks!), but one the reasons I’d be excited about having another girl is another chance at “girly.”  Headbands and bows and dolls and dress up and cutesy…  stuff that she was never interested in.

But I love this little girl.  I love her personality, and the fact that she wants to wear a tee and sweatpants (like me) and play in the sand and use her imagination and create stories and draw pictures.   I love it.  I wouldn’t change it.

And if baby #3 is another boy, then our daughter can be the girliest girl that I have, and that’s fine with me.  :-)