Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween! (Belated)

I took Nora out to trick-or-treat this year:

Isn't she the cutest little kitty you have ever seen?! :)

She had a lot of fun trick-or-treating with the neighborhood kids this year. She learned very quickly how to charm everyone out of their candy and pretzels. :) Although she has hardly eaten any candy - she doesn't like chocolate for some strange reason!! Anyway, we did end up getting rained on a bit, but I would still say Nora seriously enjoyed herself.

Until next time . . .

Thursday, October 27, 2011

26-Month Update

So Nora is 26 months old. Here are some of her latest updates:

Last month I told you that she finally started cutting tooth number 9 on the upper right side. This month tooth number 10 appeared on the lower right, and I am fairly sure some are ready to pop through on the left as well. It has been pretty tough on Nora to cut these teeth so late, but the cool thing is that she can TELL US when her mouth is hurting, and point to exactly where! Try doing that when your 6-month old cuts their teeth folks. :) Anyway, I am just really happy that she HAS teeth to cut through. She has been chewing on her fingers a lot to alleviate the pain, and even chewed off her nail polish, poor girl!

(Side note: We were talking to her about how the baby girl that I care for has no teeth, and Nora's responded with: "Like me!" :) )

She continues to talk really well. Her new cute word is "scroob". That is what she says every time she sees a "screw". :) She has also shortened every words she says to give everyone and everything a nickname: Mimi = Meem, blanky = blank, etc. It's been pretty funny to hear some of the things she comes up with. She also says "I'm sorry" for everything lately.

She loves the new van! She insists on getting in and out herself every time ("I hop in myself.") It sometimes takes us longer to get going depending on how quick she is about it, but I love watching her independent spirit at work. :)

Here are some pictures of her from this month . . .

Nora trying on her first pair of cowgirl boots, from Aunt Barbie:

In her element . . .

In her OTHER element . . .

Uh, Nora in her OTHER OTHER element? :)

Nora and dad:

Nora and mom:

At the park, can't see the new teeth yet though!

Determination/independence of a two year old + no teeth =

Love this little girl! :)

Until next time . . .

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Nora and I hitched a ride with Nora's Nana this past weekend to go up to see Cory's cousins in Valparaiso. It was a good trip! Nora did an excellent job, especially since she was cutting a tooth, poor baby!

This is Nora and her first carved pumpkin. I asked her what she wanted to carve and she said "An . . . OCTOPUSSSSSSSSSSS!!" I have no idea where that came from. She settled for drawing a face and letting me cut it out for her. :)

All the pumpkins . . .

Nora's new favorite person ever, cousin Ju-Ju:

Nap time in the car.

It was a great weekend!

Until next time . . .

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Rhodes Family Farm ROCKS!

I live in a place that isn't really glamorous to anyone but me. So when we find a seriously good time that is literally 15 minutes from where I live, I get pretty excited!

This past weekend we went to Rhodes Family Farm. It. Was. Awesome! Here are some photos from our trip:

Playing on the hill slide.

Swinging in one of the tire swings.

Playing in the corn.

Walking on the hay bales.

A ride on the "train".

Trying to get a sleepy kid to take a picture. :)

This isn't even all of it folks. There was also a zip line, a water trough with play ducks, an inflatable jumper unlike any you have ever seen, good food, a gourd gun, and animals to feed and pet. It is so neat!! :) I only wish we had more time to spend there that day. We will definitely be going back!

Until next time . . .

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Newest Command Center :)

OK, yes! - I admit it. I changed my Command Center again. I may have a problem. But this time, I am pretty satisfied with it! It has room for everything, and extra room for whatever else I dream up. :)

What do you think? It has DIY-Fabric-Covered Art Boards at the top for our little budding artist, another magnetic board on the left for reminders to myself, star hooks for our keys, a Thirty-One Organizer for all the important paperwork, and my IKEA bin for the big stuff. I personally love it - at least organization-wise!

. . . Although, I must admit that after seeing this fabric, I already want to change out the fabric on the boards! :) It's been a week folks! lol So I may possibly do that sometime this year if I can swing it. I made the fabric cover easy-to-change if I found something better, and the new fabric is a little more my style.

Also, the bins are a little too plain for me, and I may dress them up. I clipped on some of the fabric hair flowers that I made recently just to see how they would look. They are dark navy and don't match, but I could easily make some black ones. Whatever I do to them needs to be easy to change because we all know me. :)

Let's looks back at the before pictures, shall we?:

Command Center #1
Command Center #2

Let's hope that #3 sticks around for awhile. I swear, I really do have better things to do. :)

Until next time . . .

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

New Vehicle :)

Well, we did it. We pulled the trigger.:

I am now a mini-van momma. :)

Cory's car was starting to crap out on us, so we had started saving for a new vehicle this year. We were looking at definitely getting something with third-row seating to accomodate all the kids I haul around nowadays! We started looking at new-used crossover-type vehicles and mini-vans. It did not take us long to figure out that despite me NEVER WANTING TO DRIVE A MINI-VAN EVER . . . it was the smart thing to do. We would get wayyyyyyyy more vehicle for our money, and it would be the best thing for our family. (This post also helped convince me.)

And . . . I am actually really pleased with it! We ended up taking advantage of an end-of-the-year deal and got ourselves a new 2011 Charcoal Dodge Grand Caravan. It's a seriously sweet ride. :) I test drove a used mini-van that made me feel like I was driving a BOAT, but our new van is not like that at all! It's very smooth, and I am shocked at how easy it is to drive and how different it is from the other one I drove. It's the first new vehicle Cory has ever had, and it's the nicest either of us has ever had. We are truly blessed to have it!

Here are some photos of today:
Cory's car odometer before we headed up to trade it in.

Our trade-in. :)

-E- and Nora crammed in the backseat of Cory's old car! It was so fun getting those carseats in . . . lol

Nora exploring the new van.

Center console . . .

First time carseat installation!

New van owners! :)

And, please, no soccer mom jokes. :) YAY MINI-VAN!

Until next time . . .

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Some Favorite Summer Photos

I never really posted any pictures from our neighbor's 3rd birthday party, but I got two that I think are really funny that I thought I'd just go ahead and share.

This one:
(Nora turned upside down by her daddy, on request of course!!)

And this one!:
(This is Cory after he let the boys roll him down the "hill" in a tire. :) )

Until next time . . .

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Baby's Basket

OK, so I have been waiting and waiting to post this for what feels like FOREVER! :)

One of my best friends Jadrien is pregnant with her first child, and her shower was this past weekend. I was so excited when I learned that she was pregnant that I decided that I had to create some amazing gifts for her child. Even with my own struggles that have been going on, I still wanted her gifts to be perfect, because even though the things themselves are irrelevant, I still look back on some of Nora's favorite baby items and remember how I felt after Nora's birth. I remember who we were then and who we are now, and I am so happy.

I bought a collapsible picnic basket (inspired a little bit by Kim's at Newlywoodwards), painted baby's monogram on the front, and started to fill it!

A peak inside . . . (there are a lot of details to this basket, and I will be showing you a few of them.)

First up, I sewed a "taggie" blanket. Jadrien gave Nora a little "lovey" blankie, and I really wanted to return the favor! I found a good tutorial here.

The back:

I also made some closet dividers with 0-3 month, 3-6 month, 6-9 month, 9-12 month, 12 month, 24 month, and 2T and 3T dividers. Good thing I left a blank one, because I forgot 18 month! lol These were inspired by this photo.

This is just a little "b is 4 boy" art made out of a mini canvas and easel that I have been dreaming of using for a baby gift:

I also used Wordle to create some more boy art:

Sorry about the crappy photo quality on these, but I thought they were funny: it's Mommy and Daddy's Emergency Candy. Because being a parent is stressful!!! :) For these I used a free download-able template from Rachael Ray and I edited it.

I saw these online and decided that every parent needs one: they are called "Instant Bibs". You just attach both ends to a napkin, paper towel, washcloth, or whatever is available, and BOOM! - Instant Bib. I think these are genius because I always forget to pack bibs in Nora's bag.

These I would have made myself if my sewing machine wasn't acting up so much. They are "onside extenders". You just snap them on to the onesie when it's getting too short. LOVE them. I bought them from a local store that sells them.

I almost didn't get to give this gift to Jade because my sewing machine couldn't handle sewing it - it's a "pee pee teepee". For keeping you dry while changing your little boy! :) I think it's so cute and fun!

Inside the basket are also some vinyl bibs, appliqued onesies, and special books from Nora.

I think she liked these gifts a lot - I sure enjoyed making them for her, her husband, and her soon-to-be new little one!!!!! :) And now I am sharing it with you. Hope you enjoyed it too!

Until next time . . .