Saturday, April 30, 2011

not another tote...

This time its a lovely "bubble bag"

I found this bag at walmart for a birthday gift and then added one of my flowers to give it a little extra embellishment. These bags really are cute and for $10, its a real deal. My walmart carried it in black, green, pink and a gray floral print. 

If you're interested in having a lovely flower of your own, i just might be able to hook you up. They are $10 with shipping and will soon be in my shop.hopefully. :)

Thursday, April 28, 2011

old vs. new

from andy:

Just a little snapshot of what was old around here:

and what is new as of this week:

What does this mean for you? More frequent content - mostly because we can now edit, upload and post photos in less than the usual three hours or at least without restarting the
computer more than four times a day.

And here's a little teaser about an upcoming post:

See you soon!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

quick table make-over

This little table was given to us when we were first married and now lives in our play/school room. Last week i decided it was time to give it a little make-over.
I, of course, turned to my ever-faithful can of Zinsser oil base primer because, of course, i was not interested in sanding first.
2 coats of primer plus 2 coats of a white gloss latex did the trick and it only took 3 naptimes to get it done.:)
Isn't she pretty? This room is slowly improving, and the white definitely helps.
I think i'll show you a "before" picture i took a couple of weeks ago to give you some perspective! ;)

linking to bowl full of lemons

Sunday, April 24, 2011

the bow tie.

Are you ready for some serious cuteness that will just blow your socks right off? Well, today is your lucky day.

Here's our cutie pie sporting the bow tie. 

I looked at a bunch of bow tie tutorials but I think this one from prudent baby had the best explanations and pictures. I changed the dimensions on the neck strap and center piece just a little bit, but otherwise it was a simple project that you really must make for a little boy in your life a.s.a.p. 
Ben, Will and my nephews all wore one for Easter yesterday and the cuteness was out of control. ;)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

thrifty thursday- pair of owls

i found this cute little pair for $2 a piece at the our local ARC store. i brought them home and showed them to Will (our 5yr old) 

Will is generally a pretty fun-loving, rowdy, imaginative, goofy little kid but he also has this little grown-up, 1st born streak in him that comes out occasionally in statements like, "wow, mom, i really like what you did with the valentine decorations. that red heart looks really nice up there. good work." or "yikes, your room is kinda a mess." or "i like your hair. it looks really good."  

So, when i showed him the owls i also told him i was thinking of painting them. to which he replied, "oh. yeah, that would look great. maybe a nice brown or gray. and leave their beaks and eyes yellow. and the trunk brown." 

To which i replied, "ummmm i was actually thinking something a bit more fun. like maybe orange or turquoise."

He looked at me like i had seriously lost my mind. cocked his head a bit and after a long pause said, "uhhh.... yeah. but owls are usually brown or gray." 

well, moving along. the votes still out as to what they'll be painted but either way, i think they're fun.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Chocolate Almond Joy Bars

These have been an absolute favorite dessert of mine for several years so when i needed to make some desserts for a party over the weekend i knew these had to be included. They make a lot so they are great to share! :)

Chocolate "Almond Joy" bars 

2 cups chocolate crumbs (oreo)
6 T. butter, melted
6 T. powdered sugar
14 oz. sweetened condensed milk
3 3/4 cup sweetened, flaked coconut
1 cup sliced almonds (toasted)

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350'. Combine crumbs, melted butter, and sugar and then press mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 inch pan. 

Next, combine the condensed milk, coconut and sliced almonds and drop by dollops onto the crust and carefully spread to the edges.
Bake 20-25 minutes and cool.

Melt the chocolate chips and cream over med-low heat until smooth, stirring often. Spread chocolate evenly over bars and then sprinkle with white chocolate chips.

Cover and let cool completely in refrigerator. Cut into squares.
ENJOY! :-)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Another Happy Tote

 Here's a little tote i made for my other wonderful sister-in-law for her birthday awhile back. It's just lots of ruffles like the one i made a couple of months ago but i think it turned out extra bright and happy.I made the bag part too but that's really only because handy andy was out of town when i got the idea, and it was cold outside so i wasn't about to drag all 4 kids to hobby lobby to buy a canvas tote. Anyway, i definitely should have checked out a tutorial online but it turned out alright and was good exercise for my brain. :)
the solid yellow fabric came from curtain scraps from my girls' room and the yellow print was from an old shirt. Sometimes i have a hard time not wanting to cut up my whole wardrobe or buy new clothing just so i can re-purpose the fun fabric....and andy wonders why i tell him i have "nothing to wear!" just kidding. maybe.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

hi! it's me, "handy andy"

Well, today, for your special treat, you get to hear from "handy andy" himself. (isn't he a good sport to abide my catchy nickname?! especially since when he was kid he was quite adamant that "My name is AndDREW!" heehee) Anyway, we're in the process of tackling our play/school room so of course, i turned to him with the idea to build a handy dandy custom little table for the space. And now he's been oh so kind to start getting some ideas and making some plans.  Well, without further he is. :)

You may have been wondering who andy is, since I share the name of this most wonderful blog. It's me, the other half of the better half, Meg and the bread winner of our little kingdom.

Ok, so that's not what I look like now, but you've all seen me hanging around the blog, so I thought I'd show a new side(old) side of me.
I have to break from my line of thought and say that I love my Meg a ton. That's another way of saying that I don't know who, what, where, and when I'd be without her! Ok, that's enough of the gushiness.

When I was talking to Meagan about what I should post, I caught a glimpse of how cool she thinks I am, cause she said I could blog about how I fold hand towels. How I fold?  I mean, at least I should blog about something that involves a power tool. But I guess since I can be a bit of a tool, I could blog about anything and I'd have that part covered. No, seriously, I'd love to blog about really cool, amazing ideas, but you'll have to just put up with whatever comes into my mind at the time, which I must say can be random at times. Very random. For instance, I just wrote a whole two sentences about a grammatical error I just heard in a U2 song. For your benefit I deleted it, because I was SO random.

Ok, what to expect soon. I'm getting ideas for a craft table that Meg would like me to build.

Best place to start to get ideas- the high end stuff - Pottery Barn Kids:
Carolina Craft Table
Pretty basic, I'm not going for the drawers  (above my skill level for now), though I spotted one cool feature:
Carolina Craft Table
A paper roll - Now that, my friends, is something I can do! Imagine how nice it would be to just pull out a fresh roll for any craft time - catches glue, glitter, enthusiastic marker skills, and could easily be the canvas for a painting session.

Which brings me to my next idea for the table top:
Valspar 1-Quart Chalkboard Specialty Enamel Black
I envision a space under the paper area that would be a chalk board - simply for a 13 buck quart of paint! Think sidewalk chalk creativity all winter long...
Ok, at least it's cheaper than the diy dry erase version (30 bucks):IdeaPaint 8-5/16 Oz. White Interior High-Gloss Dry-Erase Paint (Covers 6 Sq. Ft.)

Ok, so for any more ideas I just did a craft table google search and here is the final idea:
P'kolino - chalk table(see - it was a good idea!) with storage. 
That's the kind of storage option I can swing!
Easier than drawers, but a couple of low organizers could cordon off markers, 
crayons, play doh, and paint equipment. 

Most likely, when i post the results, it will be a table made of 2x4's and a sheet of plywood - but hey, you've got to admit you enjoyed looking at these cool ideas!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

ft.collins fun and our downtown date

If you want to have a super fun "downtown date" here's what you do:
1. get to ft.collins, drop kids off at grandparent's house
2. Check yourself in at the Armstrong Hotel. It's right in the heart of old town and has tons of fresh charm.

 3. Hop on one of these ultra fabulous cruisers that are complimentary to Armstrong guests and ride around the back streets.

 4(and this is a big one!)- make your way over to "snooze" for breakfast. it is SUCH a happy, energetic place. seriously, i could have set up camp and hung out there al day. 
I had a pancake slider which included 3 unusual and delicious pancake flavors and andy had an amazing egg benedict.


5. Shop around old town. My two favorite places are "white balcony" (i bought a real cute hat there and refrained from buying everything else!) and "the clothes pony". I could spend hours here. They have every kind of quirky, quality cuteness for kids and mommas- toys, clothes, books, gadgets, bags... lots and lots of fun. thanks handy andy for spending nearly an hour here! :0

If i had a little more time and we hadn't already spent forever in the clothes pony i would have definitely made up residence in "mama said sew". I think i probably deserve a nice little pat on the back for walking by it in the interest of anniversary togetherness! - and this was even after handy andy saw my wistful eyes and told me i could go in if i really wanted to! ;)

6. Next, take those cruisers and go on a little bike ride by the river.  

maybe you'll get to watch a train go by! ;)

7. Trade out your bikes for the car and then head a little further  south on College ave and pull into "Larkburger". Enjoy super, super great gourmet burgers in a superb atmosphere.

Well, there you go. hope you plan a downtown date soon! :)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

thrifty thursday- 3 little chairs

 I came across 3 more lovely little school chairs at a thrift store in ft.collins this last weekend. $4.50 a piece and they make me sooo happy. they are even the same brand as the cream one from last week! Can't wait to paint them and then we're going to start thinking about ideas for a little table handy andy can build... 

Did have any thrifty success this week? If you're in the ft.collins area you should check out "Once again" on college ave. to the north of whole foods. it was the first time for us and they had a great selection of stuff. :)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

christmas card 2011

As a reward to the kids for sitting sweetly while we took a couple of spur of the moment family pics before church last sunday, we told them we would do silly ones at the end. they ended up being our favorites out of them all. what can i say? the kids have a real talent for being silly. i don't know where they get it from....

thirty is the NEW three!

My sweet sister in law is one of the loveliest and youthful-looking gals you'll ever see and this year she turned 30! My twins turned three the same month so at their birthday party they were asking their auntie joelle when her party was and how old she would be turning. When she told them "30" they interpreted it to be "3" and were consequently SO excited with the thought that they were the same age as their auntie! this little mix-up got us thinking of a new slogan for joelle's 30th year: "30 is the NEW 3" . I mean seriously, why not? 3 is a GREAT age. So, my other sister-in law, mom-in law and i decided to run with it and put together this little gift to give joelle on our surprise "30 is the next 3" girls' day out a couple of weeks ago.
 here's a little box i mod podged with our slogan :) Then we put in all kinds of things that would delight any three i mean, thirty year old!
 "30 is the age of fanciful friends!"- when my 5yr old saw strawberry shortcake he persistently asked, "but what is auntie joelle going to DO with it??" I kept telling him the possibilities were endless.

Also included were:
candy- "30 is the age of sweet treats; rewarding the smallest of achievements"
silly bands, hair clips and flower pin-"30 is the age of accessories- the more the merrier!"
balloons-"30 is the age of parties galore- everyday is worthy of a celebration!"

Hope you have a happy "3 yr old kind of day" too! :)

linking to:
justagirl show and share day

Sunday, April 3, 2011

7 years. whoa.

Today is our 7th anniversary! We watched our wedding video with the kiddos for the first time last night and it was a little surreal to sit with our 4 children and watch andrew and i get married. we looked like such babies..Anyway, we're heading out to send the kiddos to their grandparents so we can have a little get-away for the night. yay!
wow, don't ya just LOVE the perkiness in my hair that day? heehee 

love you handy andy- you're the bestest. ever.