Category archives: personal

First Lego League Tournament – 2015

This is personal … I’ve documented a large chunk of my oldest child’s day today, at a tournament run by First Lego League (#FLL). My son Olin’s team of fellow sixth grade students has been working hard, weekly, all semester, on several things. They had to build attachments for a Lego robot, and then program the robot using code to accomplish several tasks that score points for the team. The robot runs happen on a large table. This is only one aspect of the tournament though. The whole idea is to focus on core values, which include teamwork, gracious professionalism, the idea that the discovery is greater than the solution, and that it’s important to have fun. The team also came up with a presentation (a skit written by one of the team members – Cassie!) and had to perform it in front of judges, and then answer interview questions. The tournament lasted the entire day, and the kids were fantastic. I couldn’t be more proud of them all … they are a wonderful team.

olinlegoblog_0001.jpg
olinlegoblog_0002.jpg
olinlegoblog_0003.jpg
olinlegoblog_0004.jpg
olinlegoblog_0005.jpg
olinlegoblog_0006.jpg
olinlegoblog_0007.jpg
olinlegoblog_0008.jpg
olinlegoblog_0009.jpg
olinlegoblog_0010.jpg
olinlegoblog_0011.jpg
olinlegoblog_0012.jpg
olinlegoblog_0013.jpg
olinlegoblog_0014.jpg
olinlegoblog_0015.jpg
olinlegoblog_0016.jpg
olinlegoblog_0017.jpg
olinlegoblog_0018.jpg
olinlegoblog_0019.jpg
olinlegoblog_0020.jpg
olinlegoblog_0021.jpg
olinlegoblog_0022.jpg
olinlegoblog_0023.jpg
olinlegoblog_0024.jpg
olinlegoblog_0025.jpg
olinlegoblog_0026.jpg
olinlegoblog_0027.jpg
olinlegoblog_0028.jpg
olinlegoblog_0029.jpg
olinlegoblog_0030.jpg
olinlegoblog_0031.jpg
olinlegoblog_0032.jpg
olinlegoblog_0033.jpg
olinlegoblog_0034.jpg
olinlegoblog_0035.jpg
olinlegoblog_0036.jpg
olinlegoblog_0037.jpg
olinlegoblog_0038.jpg
olinlegoblog_0039.jpg
olinlegoblog_0040.jpg
olinlegoblog_0041.jpg
olinlegoblog_0042.jpg
olinlegoblog_0043.jpg
olinlegoblog_0044.jpg
olinlegoblog_0045.jpg
olinlegoblog_0046.jpg
olinlegoblog_0047.jpg
olinlegoblog_0048.jpg
olinlegoblog_0049.jpg
olinlegoblog_0050.jpg
olinlegoblog_0051.jpg
olinlegoblog_0052.jpg
olinlegoblog_0053.jpg
olinlegoblog_0054.jpg
olinlegoblog_0055.jpg
olinlegoblog_0056.jpg
olinlegoblog_0056b.jpg
olinlegoblog_0057.jpg
olinlegoblog_0058.jpg
olinlegoblog_0059.jpg
olinlegoblog_0060.jpg
olinlegoblog_0061.jpg
olinlegoblog_0062.jpg
olinlegoblog_0063.jpg
olinlegoblog_0064.jpg

Nursery – Baby Sunshine

I haven’t been able to catch up with my blogging yet, but it will happen! I was extremely busy last fall, much more busy than I could have anticipated, and was only able to keep up with meeting the deadlines I’d set for delivering photos to people. That, coupled with being in my third trimester of pregnancy, left little time for blogging.

With all that said, there will be a lot of posts coming to show the work that I did in the fall, but for now I would like to take this moment to celebrate the baby girl that is currently “past due” to be born. My mother dubbed her “Baby Sunshine” early in my pregnancy, when we found out that she was a girl, and the nickname has stuck. Her name will be announced after she is born. Andy and I have been working hard to make her nursery the way that we would like it … and it has been so much fun for me. I’d like to share some photos I took yesterday and some notes about my favorite things in the room.

The first five photos are just shots of the entire room in a circle. It’s a tiny little square room, but it should be just fine for her. It gets a ton of natural light, so we lined the curtains with another layer of black curtains for nap and bed times. The curtains are from Target.

We decided to paint the room a very light grey color with white trim, and Andy did all of that hard work since we put it off until late fall and I was getting very big. (I love you, Andy!) I was originally thinking of painting her walls a lavender color, but opted for grey since it opens up so many colorful possibilities.

babysunshinenursery-blog01

babysunshinenursery-blog02

babysunshinenursery-blog03

babysunshinenursery-blog04

babysunshinenursery-blog05

The photo below is the ribbon board that I made to store her hair clips. I used a blank canvas that we had around the house, and we painted it with Annie Sloan “Old Violet” chalk paint to match the bookcase and coat hooks that we’d also painted the same color. The orange and green ribbons are from our wedding programs that we made. The pink, blue and purple ribbons are from a diaper cake that I made for my friend Chelsea’s twins. The ribbon board tutorial that I used is here.

babysunshinenursery-blog06
The fox hair clip below and the other beautiful embroidered hair clips (not pictured here) were made by my super talented cousin Sandie. She makes amazing things by hand and sells them on Etsy. Here is her Etsy shop – love, maude.

The right photo shows what I have done with her closet … The shelf organizer came from Target and the bins all hold clothes in the sizes that she will probably need over the next year.

babysunshinenursery-blog07
I made a headband holder out of an oatmeal container and an old calendar from Paper Source, one of my favorite stores of all time. The tutorial I used is here.

The photo in the frame is ombre zinnias from Laura & Andy’s wedding. I love the colors (and love the flowers) and wanted to share these two loves with Baby Sunshine.

babysunshinenursery-blog08
This is my starter cloth diaper stash. I have never used cloth before on any of my kids, so this will be a new adventure for me. I really love how pretty the diapers can be, even though they are (as Andy reminds me frequently) just diapers that will get really dirty. I still think they’re cute. I have followed the advice of getting a few of each different type (instead of a ton of one kind) so that we can try different kinds and see what works for us. The diapers shown here are mostly Goodmama fitted diapers. The grey with rainbow stripes on the top left is made by a work-at-home-mom (WAHM) whose shop is called Forward Thinking and I can’t wait to try it out. The other kinds randomly here are a Tots Bots Frugi rainbow dot diaper, a BuBuBeBe fitted, a Green Mountain Diapers workhorse, two Grovia All-In-Ones, a BumGenius pocket diaper and a Kissas fitted.

babysunshinenursery-blog09
We are also going to try prefolds and covers, as this is the recommended best economical option. I got Green Mountain Diapers Cloth-Eez prefolds to try, and my covers are an assortment of Flips, Thirsties, and Rumparooz.

babysunshinenursery-blog10
I only bought three “newborn” size Goodmama diapers since I’m expecting her to be a big baby like my boys were, but this is one of my favorites, for obvious reasons. So cute! Now that you all think I’m crazy … moving on …

babysunshinenursery-blog11
I’ve always loved the poofy tissue paper poms that you see at parties and in baby rooms, so this was a great time and reason to make some. They were super fast and easy to make, except for the multi-colored one. That took a long time! The tutorials that I used are here (multi-colored) and here (single-colored).

My glider is ten years old, from when I was pregnant with baby Olin, and the covers have truly seen better days. I really wanted to make slip-covers from new fabric to refresh the chair and make it fit better in the room, but this was a project that didn’t get completed. My wonderful Aunt Bud is going to work on it for me, which I am so thankful for. The tutorial that I was going to use to make the slipcovers is here, even though I think their finished fabric choice is pretty hideous.

Andy painted the glider with Annie Sloan chalk paint in the “graphite” color with clear wax. I love, love, love all of the things we have painted with the chalk paint. Thanks to my friend Katie Beale for making me aware of this stuff with her amazing furniture projects that she’s done. Our local retailer that sells Annie Sloan chalk paint (and tons of other fun stuff) is called Second Betty. They have so many pretty colors of chalk paint … the home projects that could be done with this stuff are endless.

babysunshinenursery-blog12
The prints in the frames are by the artist Katie Daisy. Her Etsy shop that sells prints of her paintings is called The Wheatfield. I absolutely love the color and feelings of her work. The first print is a floral sugar skull … which my mom thought was bizarre … but Andy loves sugar skulls so it’s very appropriate for us. I thought the butterflies were just simply pretty, and I love the pink farmhouse that is bursting with flowers. It reminds me of vintage childrens’ books and simple days in the summer sun.

babysunshinenursery-blog13
These shelves hold some of my favorite toys and other random things. The red furby is from my high school best friend Breanne. The vintage pink Fisher Price dragon on the other side is from my other high school best friend Jay. I love that I can bring elements of them and my history into this room too. The red owl was stuffed and sewn together as a gift to me from my dear Andy. The Care Bears are all vintage from my childhood, and I thought they fit perfectly with the rainbow/colorful theme in her room.

babysunshinenursery-blog14
This quilt … I don’t even know what to say about how special this is to me. My aunt Bud made this for me and gave it to me recently, and I love it so much. She made this from quilts that belonged to my grandma and her sister Vivian who recently passed away. Such a special gift.

babysunshinenursery-blog15
Last of all, I knew I needed a Baby Jives rainbow drop cloud mobile. Baby Jives is a small company run by a work at home mom, and I was happy to help support her and buy something super cute for Baby Sunshine. She makes a lot of different mobiles that are available on her site, babyjives.com.

babysunshinenursery-blog16

babysunshinenursery-blog17
So, that’s the room for now! I’m very happy with how it turned out, and I cannot wait to rock and play and sing to my baby girl here.

baby face.

jackson has a multitude of facial expressions lately. when you ask him to make a happy or sad face, he will try his best to make his face fit the emotion. i was able to capture some of them with my camera, and i’m thankful to have these pictures of his sweet two-and-a-half year old self now, forever. i am sharing my favorites here with the hope that other people will enjoy them too. he makes me laugh so much.

jacksonface1

jacksonface2

jacksonface3

jacksonface4

jacksonface5

jacksonface6

jacksonface7

lainie’s first birthday.

i don’t have any daughters … or sisters … or even female pets. i can’t explain how excited i was last february, when i became an aunt for the first time – and it was a girl! alaina lynn was born, and suddenly i was able to buy cute little girl clothes and toys, things i previously didn’t have an excuse for. this is why you see a lot of pictures of her here on my blog – because i adore her, and she is absolutely beautiful. lainie lives about seven hours away from me, so i only get to see her every few months or so, and she has grown and changed so much this year each time i’ve seen her. i love her to pieces. here are some photos from her first birthday party.

lainiesfirstbday-1 lainiesfirstbday-2 lainiesfirstbday-3 lainiesfirstbday-4 lainiesfirstbday-5 lainiesfirstbday-6 lainiesfirstbday-7 lainiesfirstbday-8 lainiesfirstbday-9 lainiesfirstbday-10 lainiesfirstbday-11 lainiesfirstbday-12 lainiesfirstbday-13 lainiesfirstbday-14 lainiesfirstbday-15 lainiesfirstbday-16 lainiesfirstbday-17 lainiesfirstbday-18 lainiesfirstbday-19 lainiesfirstbday-20 lainiesfirstbday-21 lainiesfirstbday-22 lainiesfirstbday-23 lainiesfirstbday-24