Wednesday, March 30, 2011

What we've been up to

I've been posting lots of random things lately so here's what we've really been up lately...

Jeff went snowboarding with some friends from work and had a blast.
(He is going to miss these guys so much when we PCS to Campbell)

The boys' awesome Aunt Kaylee made them matching onesies with adorable little owls on them! Thanks Kaylee!
(And she sent them from Hawaii, paid like 2 bucks to ship them, and they got here in 4-5 days... how awesome is that?)

We decided to use Penske and rent one of their moving trucks for our move. They offer unlimited miles, and this baby runs on diesel (bettering our gas mileage and saving us money). The only thing we're concerned about is driving this monster with the Equinox attached to the back!

We took Jack to Northwest Trek (a wildlife park near Eatonville, WA that we love)
It poured down rain, so we enjoyed the tram through the 435-acre free roaming area.
(notice how they're making the same funny face? that happens a lot and it makes me happy)

But I guess I make some funny faces too...

We had Jonah's 24 week checkup. He is growing right on schedule and his heart rate was in the 140's. He kicked the monitor thingy while the doctor was trying to find his his heartbeat, taking after his big bro' already!
I just asked Jeff "Do I really look THIS pregnant in real life?" I had no idea I was showing so much. I mean, don't get me wrong.. I feel huge. But I kind of thought I was still in that "I wonder if she's pregnant or just fat?" stage...

And I have to brag about Jack before I can close today. He's been extremely lovey-dovey on his mama this morning. I think he can tell I've been a little stressed out about PCS stuff. He's such a blessing (:

What have y'all been into? Anything interesting?
(Come on... anything is more interesting than us deciding on a moving truck...) 

Here's what I think...

... in the end, everything to do with our PCS will work out.
... it is such a little blessing to feel Jonah kicking.
... hearing that an anxoius, new Army wife from my hometown got her husband's address from BCT today makes me happy.
... friends can help so much, even from far away.
... my laundry jumps out of my closet and back into the basket when I'm not looking, leaving me to have to put it away again.
... arguments are a healthy part of marriage, as long as you learn from them.
... my one year old could easily charm any woman with his dimple-framed smile.
... the cold pizza in my refridgerator and hot tea sounds like a delicious breakfast for me tomorrow and I don't care if you say it's gross (:
... it's the little things in life that make it good.
... when you can't do anything else, pick a dandelion, close your eyes real tight, make a wish, and blow all your worries away.
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Monday, March 28, 2011

I hope you never have to

"You think you know my pain, but I hope you never have to. You don't know the way my heart breaks every time you kiss your significant other, taking for granted the time you have together. You don't have the lonely days spent wanting someone to kiss or a hand to hold. You can't know about my sleepless nights, listening to our song attempting to fight back my tears, but losing miserably...You don't feel my heart shutter whenever I hear his name or about the US Army. But you also don't understand the pride I feel whenever I see the American flag or the army logo. You don't understand the miracles of pictures or the importance of capturing the little things in life that you can't share together, but want him to experience. You can't believe in the power of "I love you" if you hear it everyday. You don't know how it feels to cry yourself to sleep and wake up reaching for him only to be rushed back to reality and have your eyes well up with tears once again. You would not know the sadness in goodbye and you would never be able to fathom the feelings of happiness, the overwhelming sense of joy, and the ecstasy that escapes when you see him for the first time when he gets home. Hardships are part of the battle but loving him is worth every tear. He is the only one who can make me feel like a woman, help me to believe in myself and he is the only voice that calms me down when I cry. Whenever I read his letters, hear his voice, or see his face; I know I have made the right decision. He is the man I love, he is the man I live for. He is the man I bear this pain for, and I hope you never have to."

No I'm not feeling down today or anything.. I just came across this quote that a friend (thanks Erin) posted and loved it. Jeff has been back from his first deployment for 9 months now. But there are constantly families everywhere missing their soldier... I think it's easy for us to quickly forget that after our own soldier comes home...

Sunday, March 27, 2011

32 of out of 50

I've been to 32 of the 50 states in America. (Some were just for layovers during flights, and some I just drove through). But none the less.. I've been to 32 of them. Wonder if I can get all 50 in my lifetime? (:
(If you want to make your own map, go here)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

a DITY move.. my brain hurts

We were originally planning on letting JPPSO (The Army's relocation department) move us to Campbell. Which means they would pack up our whole house, they would move all of it, and they would move it in when we arrived at our new house. Sounds great, huh?

Well, because "confusion" between Jeff's unit and people at Waller Hall (the people that give him his orders) we are past the deadline for doing a JPPSO move. The average wait time right now for a move date is 60 days wait from when you do your JPPSO briefing. And Jeff can't do the briefing until he gets his orders. We are scheduled to leave here May 10th, Making March 10th the deadline for him to do the briefing, and we're clearly past that.

So, what does this mean? We will be packing our own house, moving our own stuff, and unpacking everything ourselves upon our arrival to Fort Campbell.
I'm trying hard not to stress, military families do this all the time. But the truth is, I'm going to be 8 months pregnant. And so packing wise, I'm going to be virtually useless. We were planning on driving our vehicle anyways, so nothing changes as far as that. But there are a lot of "what if" and "what should we do about this" questions.

Should we sell our cavalier? (that we JUST paid off) because how are we going to drive a moving truck and my equinox and Jeff's cavalier
Should we rent a U-haul or use a service like PODS (where you pack, they move)
How can we be sure about picking a house without being there? (because we are going to have all our stuff with us, we can't be in a hotel forever)
Should we stop in Ohio or not? We have stuff in Ohio we need to move to Campbell as well, so it'd be perfect if we could just load it in the moving truck on the way BUT...
the moving truck is $60 plus mileage (75cents a mile). So we'd have to pay for the extra miles to Ohio, and pay for each day we spent in Ohio. Needless to say, we'd have to stop, load all our stuff, sleep, and then leave. And that would make us sad, not to spend any time with family :(
AND who will help us unpack at Campbell? I mean, we have friends here to help (men to move heavy stuff). But we don't know many people at Campbell. (Amber- I know Mark would help, but it's right around Trent's due date and we don't wanna take Mark away from you two!)

Sorry, I know this is a confusing and big blob of a blog. But I just needed to vent. I feel a little better just getting it out. Off to start packing (I like to get a head start so I don't HAVE to pack every day)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Planning Jonah's room

Because we are moving to Fort Campbell soon, I can't set up Jonah's nursery (obviously) until we get there. I will have about a month to get everything ready for him once we get there. Which is plenty of time normally, but I also will  be unpacking and setting up in our new house during that time! Oy, makes me tired just thinking about it.

So to avoid as much stress as possible (and just because I'm an avid planner and a teensy bit OCD) I'm trying to make and aquire as much of the smaller items we'll need before we move. So that all I have to do when we get there is set it up!

You are probably going to think I'm crazy, but the theme I'm using is a vintage-y, natural, birds/owls one. With colors like light blue, navy blue, white, cream, and dark brown. And materials like wicker, branches, ceramics, cloth, and canvas. I saw a nursery done in this type of decor and I feel in love, I'm using it as inspiration. I promise it'll make since when it's all put together.

This weekend, I enlisted the help of my husband for another project. I love including him in my projects recently, he is a great help and I love creating things (especially for our children) with him. Thanks, babe!

I can't claim this idea.. but I can't for the life of me remember the blog I got it from. I'm about 75% positive is was Oh Dee Doh

Anyways, I love this idea because it's cheap and ends up looks very unique (and its perfect for Jonah's nursery!)

First you need a pre-made wooden birdhouse.. You know the ones you find at craft stores that are meant for your kids to paint? I found mine in the craft section at walmart for just under $5. Next, raid your local goodwill or thrift store for an old hardback children's book. This is important: make sure the hardback cover to your book is slighty bigger than the roof of your birdhouse when open. (This will make sense later)
I picked out this one because it's old and it has an owl on the cover so it will match Jonah's room. It was $1 at our Goodwill.

You also need Mod Podge, a foam brush or two, and scissors. And you might wanna cover the area with newspaper just to be safe.
(Sorry for the poor photo quality)

Next rip the pages out of the book, well don't "rip"... carefully remove is a better instruction.

I have to apolgize for not having any pictures of the main part of the process, both Jeff and I were covered in Mod Podge.
You are bascially going to pick the pages you want and cover the sides, and front and back of the birdhouse. Modpodge, and then apply the pages, and then modpoge on top of them to seal.
Here's a picture of it drying after we applied all the pages.
TIP: you can use a credit card or something like it to smooth out the air bubbles under the pages.
We used only the pages that had birds for this one but you can use pick and choose what pages you want to use and how to position them. It's all up to you. And we had some "wooden" showing at the bottom after covering all the sides, so we just cut strips from what pages we had leftover and used those to finish the bottom part.

I used a light blue paint to paint the roof edges before we added the book cover. Just so it will match Jonah's room better. Modpodge the whole roof and lay the book cover on top. (You may have to break the binding a bit). Let it dry and your done!

Here's our final product

I'm happy with it :)

We also found these at the Thurston County Flea Market this weekend
The white owl is actually a pitcher. But it'll be used to hold some sort of baby goodies.
(And yes we were starving afterwards, hence the KFC)

I can't wait to start setting up in a few months :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

I sewed something!

After much deliberation, I finally bought a sewing machine. (Not my first one, but the first one was crap so we didn't get along)
This is the lucky gal I picked
The Brother CE-5500PRW. She's been awesome so far, totally blows my first sewing machine out of the water.

I spent the first two days getting to know all (or most of) the stitches and how the machine works. But yesterday I tackled my first project!

We have an awesome store in Yelm (where I live) called Geegee's Quilting Inc. Jack and I went to check it out the other day. To say I was overwhelmed, would be an understatement. They have so much fabric. I can't even explain.. it was like diving into Mary Poppin's bag. Every corner you turned there was another nook with another collection of fabrics. No way could I decide on a project and fabric in there but I wanted to get something so I bought a few packages of quilting squares. One set I got was all spring-y fabrics, can't go wrong with that?
Now what to do with them...

How about some nifty placemats to get you in the spring-y mood!

Pretty simple process actually. I finished them both during Jack's naptime. The fabric was already cut into 5" x 5" squares. So I sewed them into columns of 3, ironed the seams, and then sewed the columns togethers to make a 3 x 4 rectangle.

And I had just bought some more dishtowels.. (because we ruined some of ours cleaning up all the primer that Jack spilt) So I just used one of those for the backing.

So what do ya think? Not to shabby 'eh?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

30 Day Challenge - Day 3

Day 3 - Post a a random photo of how you and your spouse met. Did you know then that you’d be where you are with him today?

Yeah... we're that couple. We met in high school... in the band. (Actually, he dated one of my friends before that.. but I didn't really care to get to know him)
That's my husband playing the saxophone, you can't tell from this picture but he was usually sporting a full beard back then.

I don't think either of us knew back then that we'd be married with 2 munchkins in just a few years. He was already enlisted when we started getting to know each other and was due to leave for BCT less than a month after his high school graduation. So I think we both just assumed we'd have a good time and make the most of the time he had left and that would be it. Oh, but God other plans (:

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

30 Day Challenge - Day 2

Day 2 - Post a picture of you and you military spouse being silly

We're takin' it back, way back to 2008! I was a senior in high school and Jeff had taken leave to come home for Easter weekend. My mom wanted to get some shots of us (because we didn't have that many of us together) She did a great job, the pictures turned out awesome.. And this one was in the middle somewhere. Yes, it looks super sweet.. but I'm pretty sure this was right after Jeff said something like "I really have to pee" haha

Munchkin's Table Makeover

TWO craft posts in one week? You got it!

I'm bad about going into the thrift store/Goodwill with a list of things I already have a plan for... And coming out with things that I have no plan for that will have a plan eventually :)

This little guy was one of them
Doesn't he just looked so sad and helpless! It looks like he might have been a Precious Moments table at a time long, long ago. But everyone deserves a second chance, right? So I snatched him up and bought him at Goodwill for $2.99 and brought him home to start his restoration right away! (that was the plan, I've actually had this table since November and just now got around to fixin' him up, sorry lil' guy!)
Much to my excitment, my wonderful husband jumped at the chance to help me with a project! And I am definitely not one to turn down help with sanding! We decided to use colors to go along with Jack's toy shelf (Or I picked out the colors and they just happened to sort of coordinate, whatever)
After the first coats of paint, still looking pretty rough. Oh and of course we primed it first. HOW could I almost forget that... My son actually spilled the whole can of primer on our kitchen floor. Thank goodness for mineral spirits! We just used plain ole' acrylic paints from Apple Barrel seen in the picture.

The colors match up better than these two pictures make it seem (the picture of the storage bin organizer is from Target's website so the lighting is different). After many, many coats of base paint, I then had to decide what I wanted to do with the table top. Being the "teacher's kid" that I am, I drew from ideas that would help him with his development and learning. Colors and letters! I would paint letters and numbers in all different colors! So that he can point, and ask, and learn! My next dilemma, how do I get the letters/numbers to look somewhat NOT like my son actually did them.
And then.. I found my solution while taking a potty break, litterally.
Behold, Jack's bath toys. Foam letters and numbers included *happy dance*
FYI, they make awesome stamps! And acrylic paints wash out with soap & water so no harm done, they can go back to your child's bathtub after use.

This picture is a little blurry but you can see the start of my stamping (using the same colors I used for the legs). By the end, there were some letters/numbers missing because I think our bathtub ate some of them, but oh well.

And here's the little guy all finished, sealed with some polycrylic, and looking much happier in his new home!
Sorry the picture quality is so bad! But you can see in the second picture, Jack is enjoying his new munchkin table!

Now just have to find some munchkin chairs to go with it! Ikea? I think so :)

P.S. I'm linking to:
A Little Knick Knack

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A is for Avery

When I came across this tutorial at Mandipidy, I knew I had to try it. I decided on making one for Jack's room. Then I had an Uh-Oh moment. Jack's name (obviously) starts with "J" and J is a very curvy letter. Wrapping yarn evenly around the curviness did not sound that promising. So I started searching for other options. And then I thought of my sweet little Avery (my 6 year old sister).
(How can you not love this girl?)

She sends me stuff ALL the time, and I hardly ever send stuff for her! *sadface* And Avery's name is very cooperative with this project.

I highly suggest you go visit Mandipidy and take a look at the tutorial for the yarn-wrapped letter. She is clean-cut with her instructions, it really helps when you are trying something new! And the best part about the letter is that you only need a couple things (that you probably already have. Toilet paper rolls, scissors, tape, modpodge, yarn, and a paint brush. Thank you, Mandy!

I used a multi-shade pink yarn I had left over from a crochet attempt (that may or may not have got finished). After I finished the letter,

I decided it needed more to get that "I'm finished" look. So I turned to two of my favorite stores.. Goodwill and Dollar Tree. I bought a scratched up frame at Goodwill for $1.99 and found an adorable pair of purple butterflies for $1 while looking for something else in the Dollar Tree. I painted the frame with a couple coats of a high-gloss white acrylic paint I already had. (Sidenote: I didn't use the glass for the frame) The background is a piece of scrapbook paper from my collection of crafty stuff as well, along with the pink sheer ribbon I used for the accents in the corners. My handy, dandy glue gun attached the A to the background and the butterflies to the A. I was pretty impatient while waiting for the paint to dry on the frame. I wanted to get it all put together and see what it looked like

Ta Da!

Hopefully Avery likes it! I think it'll go great it her gareden themed room!

Monday, March 14, 2011

30 Day Challenge - Day 1

Day 1 - Post a photo of your military spouse and list 10 facts about him

Since this is a military related challenge, I used a picture of him in uniform. And this is actually one of the last pictures I got from him during his deployment to Afghanistan last year. I love this picture, I'm not sure why, I just do :) He came home about a month later. 

10 things about SGT Jeffrey Davis

1. He's the love of my life (Okay sorry, I promise this won't get mushy gushy)
2. He enlisted in the Army at 17 and has been in for almost 5 years now.
3. He's a wonderful father
4. He loves John Wayne
5. Old trucks make him green with envy
6. His favorite food is anything that his Nanny cooks (She's truly an azmaing cook)
7. You can always count on him to do the right thing
8. He loves music, mostly rock and country
9. He remembers the some of the most random things
10. Elmo really annoys him (Yes, thats really on this list.. we have a toddler give us a break)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Small Town Life

My husband, Jeff, and I are old souls at heart. We like antiques, we play scrabble while watching jeopardy on a Friday night, and spending time together is the ultimate "great weekend!"

Last night, I had a hot date. And my hot date knows me well, he took me to play mini-golf! Black light mini-golf at that.
It was so cool! Everything was glowing and they had great music playing. Of course I kicked his butt too. (Or he beat me by twelves strokes, same difference)

Afterwards we saw Rango in the theater. (Allowing me to cross off the letter "R" in movies for my Day Zero project). The movie was pretty good. It had a really good message in saying that who you are does not depend on what you call yourself, rather it depends on the deeds you do. And I loved the typed of animation they used. Technology is amazing, using it they were able to have Rango (the main character) actually mimick Johnny Depp's body movement. Husband says "It was just really funny" and also says that he loved how they subtly picked fun at other western movies (John Wayne is his hero).

This morning I woke up to find Jack STILL asleep, reassuring me that he had a blast last night hanging out with his uncle "DanDan" as he calls him. Because of daylight savings we had missed church, so we opted for a good breakfast at the diner! Jack's favorite server, Amy was in this morning and spoiled him rotten of course. It's amazes me how many people just fall in love with Jack when they meet him. He made friends with Amy's husband today and also with a couple that had a 2 year old granddaughter. He knows just how to turn on the charm and flaunt those cute little dimples and big blue eyes. He even got a lollipop from Amy the way out.

It wasn't raining (for 10 whole minutes) after we left the diner so we decided to enjoy the outside a little and let Jack run off some energy. There's a great park in our town called Cochrane Memorial Park. It has no playground equipment, its just a path around a 8 beautiful acres of natural scenery. And it serves dually, it's a water reclamation facility as well. Which means, it uses natural elements to reuse and clean the city's wastewater, making it usable for all purposes except drinking water.

Jack loved running around, and we loved watching him enjoy the outdoors as much as we do. Daddy was never far behind him though, he can't be trusted to stay out of the water..

I think the ducks were his favorite part, he kept saying "Oh wow!" and squealing. He tried so hard to catch one!

We found these gorgeous flowers starting to come out of hiding as well. I've never seen these flowers anywhere but here in the Pacific Northwest, but they sort of remind me of bells when they are fully bloomed. (P.S. Have I told you how much I love the camera on my phone? It's 8.1 megapixels and I took all these pics with it!)

At the end of our walk, Jack left with muddy shoes and pants he couldn't have been happier! Well, he was happy after we took the muddy pants and shoes off and gave him his sunglasses and lollipop.

Friday, March 11, 2011

30 Day Challenge: Military Style

This morning I somehow stumbled upon a blog called Everyday That You're Away written by an awesome girl named Katie. I love reading about fellow military families. It gives me a sense of "home." Anyways, last week she started this really cool challenge "30 Day Challenge: Military Style" and I thought I'd link up too! Here's how it works...

For thirty days, I post a picture every day. And here's the list:

Day 1 - Post a photo of your military spouse and list 10 facts about him

Day 2 - Post a picture of you and you military spouse being silly

Day 3 - Post a a random photo of how you and your spouse met. Did you know then that you’d be where you are with him today?

Day 4 - Post a picture of the family he had to leave behind to protect his country

Day 5 - Post a pic of the branch he is in and list your favorite "stay strong" quote.

Day 6 - Post a picture of the base your spouse is stationed at and tell 5 cool things about that base

Day 7 - Post a picture of a wonderful friend that you’ve made because of your spouse being in the military

Day 8 - Post your favorite deployment photo (a photo of "see you laters", him coming home, or him deployed) and tell why it is your favorite

Day 9 – Post a picture of your favorite thing that you or your spouse has made and tell what it is.

Day 10 - Post a photo that you or your spouse took on webcam or cell phone

Day 11 - Post a picture of the stationary you pour your heart out onto in letters to your spouse

Day 12 – Post a picture of a book you are reading/have read because of your spouse being in the military and tell how it has helped you.

Day 13 – Post a picture of your favorite military support accessory and tell where you got it from.

Day 14 – Post a picture of what consumes most of your time when your spouse is away

Day 15 - Post a picture of your spouse during your proudest moment of him

Day 16 - Post a picture of your favorite piece of jewelry that your spouse has gotten you and why it is your favorite!

Day 17 - Post a picture of something your spouse left you while he was away and how that helped you… did/do you carry it with you or sleep with it?

Day 18 – Post a picture/video and the lyrics of your and your spouse’s song and tell how/why it became y’alls song

Day 19 - Post a picture of his favorite show and tell of one episode you watched with him

Day 20 - Post a pic of you in something military (shirt, camo, etc.)

Day 21 - Post a picture of a movie or show you watch when your spouse is away that you usually don’t watch when he is home and tell why you don’t watch it when he is home.

Day 22 – Post a picture of what keeps you strong when your military spouse is away

Day 23 - Post a picture and tell what your life would be like without your spouse

Day 24 – Post a picture of your spouse's favorite sports team

 Day 25- Favorite moment or experience you have had with the military

Day 26 - Post a homecoming picture and tell how you felt that day

 Day 27 - Post a picture of something that reminds you of your spouse and tell why it does.

 Day 28 – Post a picture of the band that sings the song of your significant other’s ring tone while they are away.

 Day 29 – Post a picture of the coolest place you ever got to go to because of your spouse being in the military

Day 30 - Post a picture of your favorite military spouse support group and tell how it has helped you.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Adventures of Parker and Jack

Cuteness overload alert! 
Majorly adorable baby pictures coming your way!

I'm making books for Jack and my (honorary) nephew Parker. Jack and Parker are both going to be big brothers soon, and with all the commotion of a new baby coming into the house, I thought they should have something just theirs.
Parker's mama and I are somewhat of what we like to call "life twins". We have never lived less than 1200 miles away from each other but we pretty much lead the same lives. Our birthdays are a month apart, Parker and Jack were born a month apart, our husbands came home from deployment a month apart, and our second baby boys are due a month apart this summer. And that's just the beginning. Last April we went on vacation together to San Antonio (it was a blast!) and we discovered we had even taken the same hairstyle picture to our stylists for our haircuts.

So, naturally Parker and Jack are somewhat alike. So here's a little preview of some of the pages in their book. Made from pictures we've each taken of our kids doing the same things. The title is "The Adventures of Parker and Jack".

"They have buckets on their heads"

"They help with the dishes"

"They wear glasses"

"They get kisses from their mamas"

"They loved meeting their daddies"

"They rock sunglasses"

"They sleep in their toddler beds"

"They aren't sure what to think of their blue bumbo seats"

"Their mamas love Steak 'n Shake"

"They are best buddies!"