The Best FRIENDS-Themed Party Ever: Inside Ashlyn’s FRIENDS/Central Perk Graduation Party

I possibly threw the very first FRIENDS TV Show themed bridal shower, and was one of just three people ever to blog about a FRIENDS-themed party (I did the research). So, when I planned the FRIENDS shower for my best friend back in 2013, my … Continue reading

First Birthday Party: Sweet Little Peach, Georgia Peach, Sweet Tea Theme, Southern Baby Girl First Birthday Party

My daughter turned one. It was an occasion I always claimed I’d never waste money on a party my kids would never remember, but I didn’t know what it was like to survive the first year of your new baby’s … Continue reading

Welcome to the World Baby Shower for a Boy: Map Decor Details, Globes & More

A few Little Rock ladies and I recently hosted a baby shower for my dear friend, Kami. She’s having a little boy in early March. Name to be determined. 🙂 Her best friend, Chrissy thought of a precious little theme: Welcome … Continue reading

A Somewhat Excusable Excuse

So.  It’s been quite a while since my first post as a new Mrs., and without completely excusing my absence and abandoning my “you-really-can-do-it-all” belief, l must provide even the smallest reason for my extremely tardy, second-ever post.

I’m PREGGO!

And let me tell you… {which, depending on your life stage and gender, I may not need to}, this pregnancy has kicked my little, normally-can’t-sit-still, must-always-be-productive rear end!  If your heart ever desires, look up even the most basic list of pregnancy symptoms and go ahead and put a check mark near every. single. one.  And while I am so super excited about holding our new baby, growing our family and can completely forgive-and-forget all symptoms for the greater end-result, one of the worst parts of this pregnancy has been the baby-brain.  Just call me Dory {think, Finding Nemo}.  Seriously, I have to make a reminder to remind myself to make a to-do list…

It’s BAD!

So.  Now that I have provided a somewhat excusable excuse and shared some big news, I have to share one of my recent, {smaller} home improvement undertakings that was spurred on by needing a little more functionality, a little less “everything is hard-to-reach” {hello, 5’2”}, and maybe the earliest case of nesting ever.   The goal: lower the washer and dryer and create a counter top so folding can be done in the laundry room and we could gain some much needed, extra space in the cabinets.

And as a disclaimer… I must give credit where credit is due.  I was NOT the implementer of our new, beautifully-functional laundry room.  Just the semi-creative mind.  Being pregnant kind of puts a stop to lifting washing machines and dryers… {as does being me in general}.  So.  Thank you, Hubby, for giving up your Saturday so that the new baby’s room can actually be turned into a baby’s room and not continue on as a laundry-folding-habitation.

It’s still not completely beautiful {I could stand to decorate a bit more creatively and change out the rug for something with more color}, but I’m proud!  Sorry, I forgot to take before pictures. Go figure!  If I can find some from back-in-the-day when we bought our house, I’ll add them!

Laundry Room Makeover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Materials used and Cost:

* Basic tools to remove the bolted-on pedestals (already owned)
* New dryer connection tube so the dryer could be pushed further back against the wall (about $5.00 at Home Depot)
* Primed hollow-core door ($25.00 at Home Depot)
* Washer and Dryer feet (already owned…we also learned that the pedestal feet don’t necessarily fit the actual machines)…so make sure you keep yours if you put your machines on pedestals!
* Quite a bit of time…maybe 4 hours. Especially if you only have one person disconnecting, moving, re-positioning and re-connecting the machines.

Total Cost: One Saturday afternoon and about $30.00.  Not. Bad.

I, of course, have plenty to post about recipes and teacher’s gifts that were made during the Christmas season {which I personally L-O-V-E}.  Those will be posted soon (who cares that it’s February and not December anymore, right?).  I promise you, I am NOT abandoning being a new Mrs.!

As I always will, I wish you blessings!  Talk soon.

Breast Milk Popsicles: Cooking Up a Teething Cure

So many good ideas are exchanged at the hair salon. Case and point: At my latest beauty appointment, the hairstylist inquired about my baby and, of course, the stories flowed. One of the things I shared is how Grace is teething pretty bad, and in an effort to avoid baby medicines as much as possible, I was thinking about ordering a bunch of different teething toys from Amazon (like this one, and this one here).

That’s when she told me about an idea she’d seen on Pinterest – breast milk popsicles!

Sounded like something that might work, so I immediately went home to try it. I figured it’d be pretty easy to do too. Well… I was right! Here’s all I did:

1. Pour breast milk into a few ice cube tray holes. I just filled them a tad more than halfway because I wanted to make sure she could fit them in her mouth later (but not too small that she could choke on them). Or you can try one of the many versions of this from Pinterest. The pacifier idea seems neat.
IMG_4994.PNG

2. Cover really good with ice tray cover or press and seal wrap … Something you trust to protect it from freezer burn. Let the freezer do it’s magic.

3. Pop out and put into a teether toy like this one.

IMG_4991.JPG

Or this kind here.

4. Pass it off to baby for them to teeth and suck on and enjoy.

5. Store the extras cubes for later.

I guess the breast milk is just a good lure to keep the cold on their gums and in their mouth. I know Grace likes teething rings but they lose their cool sooooo fast and other items like those aren’t fun for very long and she just drops them in exchange for her hand. So these popsicles are great for her cause she loves her milk! I love that she actually keeps it in her mouth and gnaws on it long enough for real lasting relief… Or so it seemed. Haha

She clearly loooovvvvveeeees this idea, and so do I! 🙂 Here she is enjoying them!

IMG_4975.JPG

IMG_4966.JPG

Gotta love this reaction! She was IN. TO. IT! 🙂

IMG_4976.JPG

IMG_4969.JPG

IMG_4968.JPG

IMG_4990.JPGHappy mommy and baby selfie because of our successful little breast milk popsicle experiment!

IMG_4982.JPG

IMG_4964.JPG

I only made three cubes this go-round, so I only had to stow away two cubes for later, but I’ll be making a tray of extras ASAP so she’s never without one when she’s having a bad teething sesh.

IMG_4992.PNG I’m gonna try this flavor combo next because Grace loves, loves, loves the bananas I made her! (I’ll have to post next time about my adventures in baby food making! 😎)

DIY Old Window Decor: Baby Bow Hanging Display

It’s always nice when you’re able to give something a second life and keep it out of the landfill.
In the case of this DIY project for Baby Irvin’s nursery, I was able to give a certain little window a third life!

20131119-220146.jpg

This rustic white window was salvaged from a house somewhere and sent to our local Habitat for Humanity Restore. When we decided we needed a window as a prop in our most recent bridal fashion shoot, our art director Erin headed to the Restore and snatched it up, and painted it a fun neon melon color to complement the set.

Here are a few behind-the-scenes fashion shoot pics and final tears from our new issue – all showing off the second life of this little window.
<<Isn’t our model Taylor the most gorgeous thing you’ve ever seen?!>>

20131119-220810.jpg

20131119-220749.jpg

Screen Shot 2013-11-20 at 10.01.44 AM

Screen Shot 2013-11-20 at 10.10.09 AM

After the shoot, I decided I’d take it home and see how I might be able to use it for the baby nursery. Erin suggested hanging photos from it, and I was thinking a place for hanging bows. But first, it needed a fresh coat of paint to complement the peach nursery.

20131119-220245.jpg

Sugared Peach – Behr Premium (Home Depot)
If I hadn’t already had the paint, I’d have just bought the sample size of the paint to save money and resources (since I only needed a little to cover the front of the window in two coats).

Here’s a look at my latest DIY …

20131119-220259.jpg

20131119-220311.jpg

20131119-220342.jpg

After two coats of Sugared Peach by Behr – the same paint color as the stripes in the nursery.

And while it turns out the color is still too close to the wall color … doesn’t stand out enough for me … so I’ll need to repaint, ultimately, I’ll finish it by rigging it with wires and cute mini clothespins to be able to hang bows from it. It will  have the look of this one, except I plan to keep the glass in (cause later I might reuse the window again and make it a photo frame thingy like this.)

IMG_4372

This one by Green Acres Hobby Farm

Stay tuned to the blog for a final reveal and update to this project later.

DIY Flavored Coffee Creamer

I love flavored coffee, especially this time of year, and my favorite is anything with chocolate, the richer the better. For my morning cup of Joe, I stick to organic half and half or natural creamers, because most brands like Coffee-mate and International Delight are made with mono or di-glycerides or hydrogentated oils, aka trans fats. Surprisingly, it is easy enough (and cheap) to make your own coffee creamer, all you have to do is heat up half and half and add whatever sweeteners and flavors you like. Here is what I used:

3 1/2 cups of half and half

6 Tbl hot cocoa mix (made with real chocolate)

3 Tbl sugar

1 tsp bourbon vanilla

You could also add cinnamon, nutmeg, caramel, almond or hazelnut extracts, or whatever your heart desires.

Pour half and half into a pan and slowly heat up. Be sure to get a reseal-able half and half container for easier storage when you are done.

Add chocolate, sugar, and vanilla. Mmmm chocolate.

Whisk together, remove from heat and let cool.

Use a funnel to pour your creamer back into the original container. Give it a quick shake before using.

UPDATE! the painting progression…

This gallery contains 3 photos.

So its only been four months since we moved into our new home, even though it feels like a year. Working ourselves a little too hard every weekend… we had/have a goal to get every room painted (we’ll see), crown molding and … Continue reading

Painting the Nursery: DIY Striped Wall Before & After

Not much to explain with this post, but I thought I’d show you what I’ve been up to since my last “nesting update” … we relocated the guest room furniture and decor in the now nursery to another room. Then, … Continue reading