Friday, August 26, 2011

Liza's Room - the big REVEAL :)

Well, baby Liza will be here in less than a month.  The nursery is {almost} done and I've been waiting to share it with you until we got a few photos back from our photographer friend who recently did some maternity pictures for us!  

First, let's remember what this room looked like before {back when it was our guest bedroom}:
We started by painting it blue over spring break.  At that point, we still had NO clue if we'd be having a girl or a boy.  And even though we thought 'it' would be a girl, we still opted for blue.  I'll have to find the paint can, but it is from Sherwin Williams.  
Don't worry we didn't leave their names on the wall :)

Then, we got the crib and the dresser set up.  And then the room stayed like that for quite some time...
Until we finally found some time and energy in late spring/early summer.

Here was our list for her room:
  • Add closet organization and remove closet doors
  • Add shelves to display pictures/"L"/etc.
  • Add shelves for diaper 'bins'
  • Find rug for the floor (DIY perhaps)
  • Find fabric for curtains & crib skirt
  • Hang paper lanterns
  • Make curtains
  • Make crib skirt
  • Wash clothes/burp rags/blankets/etc.
  • Spray paint "L" yellow
  • Hang pictures above crib
  • Get chair delivered and in place
  • Make a bookshelf
Although the list doesn't seem too bad, it wasn't always easy to accomplish when JW works 10.5 hours every day and I can't do too much lifting/moving by myself!  But, we're happy to say it's done!

The first pic is from our maternity pictures...pardon the rest of them.  I was eager to post and didn't edit my own!

The quilt on the back of the chair is JW's baby blanket :)

Liza's "Anywhere Chair" from PBKids, so she can fit in with her older cousins!

We like to call this the 'Twister' rug.  Maybe we've played a game or two on it :)

Diaper bag packed and ready to go to the hospital

We also like that a lot of the colors and design will be great when she wants a 'big girl' room.  And if not, most of the items in there are easy enough to switch out then!
Here's a cost breakdown:
  • Fabric for curtains & crib skirt ($65 from w/ coupon)
  • Crib (Free, hand-me-down from JW's sister)
  • Dresser ($285 from Buy Buy Baby - apparently they take Bed Bath & Beyond coupons...if we'd only known that or if there was one closer than 4 hours away)
  • Chair ($1100 - YIKES, we spent on this bad boy because we plan on using it in the living room for years to come and because my parents have the same model chair in their living room and we LOVE's a Smith Brothers in case you're wondering)
  • Shelves (FREE, leftover lumber & paint from one of our many other projects)
  • Closet Organization (FREE, again leftover paint and lumber and JW used a wire closet insert from a basement closet we never use)
  • Bookshelf ($3 - leftover white paint and lumber and trim, and then a $3 sample of the yellow paint from Lowe's or Home Depot)
  • Frames & Art (Art = $5 to print at Walgreens [rather than killing our ink cartridge]; Frames - Ryba frames from Ikea - I think they cost $10/each)
  • Blue Room Paint ($30 - we had some leftover from a room in our basement and had to buy another gallon from Sherwin Williams to finish it all off)
  • Curtain Panel Rings ($8 - SUPER sale at JoAnn Fabrics plus my teacher discount)
  • Paper Lanterns (Free - leftover from our wedding decor)
  • Rugs (the big one was $40ish from was a great deal and we love the playful colors; the small blue one - FREE - my mom crocheted for us)
  • Mirror ($40 from HomeGoods - one of our first purchases too)
  • Bins (some free from our registry, some $5/bin on sale at Meijer)
    Well, what do you think??? :)

    Thursday, August 25, 2011

    The Simple Things.

    Well it's been awhile, but I'm finally linking up again with Jesslyn Amber to share "The Simple Things".  She is such a sweet girl going through a tough time in her life, so be sure to check out her blog and send some happy thoughts her way.

    Here's my list for the week.
    ~Having a job~
    ~Knowing that we get to meet this baby girl soon~
    ~Waking up to the thump of my puppy's (ok ok, 10 year old black lab) tail on the bed~
    ~A wonderful, hard-working husband~
    ~Great family and friends who were so supportive and encouraging during 'the great job hunt'~
    ~A job that will give me some flexibility once Liza is here~
    ~Having my long-term sub plans just about done for maternity leave~
    ~Having my Master's Project and therefore my Master's DONE~

    What are YOU appreciating today?

    Wednesday, August 24, 2011

    Yay Wednesday!!

    These past few weeks have been crazy thus the lack of blogging. I went from a super-reduced teaching position with no clear idea for the fall to a technology coach position. I'm so thankful to have this worked out before Liza makes her arrival. So now it's time to link up with Jamie for "what I'm loving Wednesday" because I certainly have a lot to love this week.

    A J-O-B!!! I'm going to be the technology coach for our district! We just passed a millage this past spring for technology and I can't wait to work with our staff to help them implement technology I their classrooms!!

    Fresh food and local food! Last night we had bruschetta burgers for dinner - so delicious! The beef was from Jon's sister's cow, tomatoes and basil from our CSA, and some organic mozzarella from our local co-op.

    Celebrating the new job with our family last night. We had brownies, ice cream, and hot fudge at our house along with lots of giggles and play-time with the nephews!

    My little sweet pea, Liza. We are less than a month away from her anticipated due date! The time has flown by and we're so excited to meet her!

    Technology blogs and working in my classroom. Yes we are crazy in northern Michigan and don't start school till after Labor Day!

    Our newly arrived Sparty Tervis Tumblers and using to get them on sale.  Have you guys used camelcamel before?  You can set price alerts and wait to purchase your item when it's on super-sale.  These bad boys were normally $40 for a 4-pack and I got them for $23.95!!  I love that they don't sweat and help keep your cold drinks cold and hot drinks hot!

    And of course I'm loving my amazing husband and our sweet pup! :)
    JW caught this fish on Sunday night in the bay -- woohoo for fresh salmon!!!

    Wednesday, August 17, 2011

    Oh hey Wednesday.

    It's Wednesday -- halfway through the week!!  It's also time to link up with Jamie and share what I'm loving this week.

    Here goes...

    We had maternity pictures taken last night by a friend who also happened to sing at our wedding.  Here's a sneak peak!
    Photo courtesy Meagan Neal Photography
    I only have 2 more days left of summer school - I'm ready to be done and relax for a few more weeks before school officially starts back up.
    We are EXACTLY one month away from Liza's expected arrival date -- CRAZY!
    Photo courtesy Meagan Neal Photography
    A job interview tonight...wish me luck :) 

    Of course my sweet husband and our sweet pup!
    Photo courtesy Meagan Neal Photography

    What are you loving this week?? 

    Monday, August 15, 2011

    Liza's Adjustable Crib Skirt

    I promised this post last week. 
    And then I got busy.
    And now I'm editing my Master's project for the kajillionth time.
    I was losing some steam so I figured I'd take a break and actually get this post going.
    But first a few Liza updates!
    We had an ultrasound on Friday and by the calculations, our little lady is a growing 6 pounds, 1 ounce!  Her dad has begun to affectionately call her the "6 pounder".  This means that if she makes her arrival close to on-time, she'll be a little under 8 pounds :)

    Because of this, we've been on a mission to have her room completed soon!  And we're close.
    But, here's what I've been meaning to show you all: how to make an adjustable crib skirt.
    I had seen some no-sew crib skirts and some that took way more sewing skill than I had and I opted for somewhere right in the middle.  I think you could easily make this an almost no-sew project, though, if that's not your thing.  
    I also wanted a crib skirt that could adjust when we move Liza's mattress down as she gets bigger.  I saw this post, but she didn't have the directions as to how to actually create the crib skirt.  So I started measuring and brainstorming...and before long I had an idea.  But don't expect too much, I know very little about sewing.

    Here's what I came up with...

    Adjustable Crib Skirt Tutorial

    3.5 yards ribbon (mine was about 3/4" thick) or leftover ribbon 
    2 yards fabric (just to be safe) - I only did 3 sides of my crib since one rests against the wall
    Thread or Iron-on Hem Tape

    {1} Measure the sides of your crib that you'll want to have a skirt hang from.  Make sure your mattress is at the highest setting.  Add an inch or two on to each width and length so you have enough for a hem.  (I worked on this while I washed my fabric to ensure it was pre-shrunk)
    {2} Cut material for each panel (rather than one large piece).  Then, iron and pin a hem around each edge of the panel.  Sew these down (or use iron-on hem tape) EXCEPT for the top.
    {3} Cut your ribbon into 10" strips - you'll need approximately 11 of these.  Then, fold them in half and iron at that point.  
    {4} Pin three of these at the middle of the ribbon to the top of your side panels and 5 to the top of your front panel, keeping somewhat equal distance in between. (You'll be using the ribbon to tie knots, so you need to have the two ends out)

    {5} Sew a hem on the top of each panel while sewing the ribbon down.
    {6} Press the panels one more time before hanging.  Then, ask your husband to help you (especially if you're 8 months pregnant) tie the ribbons to the bed springs of the crib so that the crib barely grazes the floor or is slightly above - whatever you prefer.

    Then, stand back and admire your work :)
    This is Mocha, my brother's dog.  She was baffled by the noise of the camera.  She was also a good helper when it came to getting the crib skirt up :)

    More on Liza's room soon!!!

    Wednesday, August 10, 2011

    Oh loves!

    Because it's Wednesday, it's officially time to link up with Jamie and share all the great things I'm loving this week! :)

    That the weather cooled off a bit today.  It makes it easy to work inside on my Master's and not crave the sunshine and warmth outside.

    That Liza's room is sooooo close to being done!  She even got her first anywhere chair yesterday.  Braden tested it out and decided she would like it :)  And of course, this is a good thing since her tentative arrival is only 5 weeks away!!  

    Speaking of that...any suggestions on what to pack in my hospital bag?

    All the tomatoes starting to get yellow and orange in our garden -- it won't be long till we're totally overwhelmed with tomatoes.

    The PB-chocolate {green} smoothie I made yesterday.  I know putting spinach in a smoothie doesn't sound great, but you can't even taste it and you get all the nutrients from it!

    This sweet face...

    My main man, JW.

    What are you loving this week?

    Tuesday, August 9, 2011

    Garden Veggie Tacos

    It's Tuesday.  
    Which also means it's CSA day.  
    I love CSA day!
     Mostly because I get to Coveyou Farms and find this lil sweetie waiting for me.
    Then, I get home and admire it for awhile.  I seriously do.  It's a work of art.
     And then, I try to plan some meals to figure out how to get through all the produce.
    JW was expecting Mexican food tonight (one of his favorites).  So as I brainstormed for a bit, I thought of garden veggie tacos.  I wasn't sure they existed, but I checked pinterest and sure enough they do.

    I peaked at a few recipes, but ultimately decided to create my own.

    Here's how it went down...
    What you'll need:
    2 1/2 cups chopped veggies (I used green pepper, eggplant, corn and summer squash, but go crazy with your variations), make sure to keep sizes consistent
    1/2 jalapeno pepper, diced
    1/2 banana pepper, diced
    1/4 white onion, diced
    1 clove garlic, diced
    1 1/2 tablespoons taco seasoning (you can make your own, but we have a giant container)
    Splash EVOO
    Tortillas (either corn or flour)
    1 can Refried Black Beans
    1/3 cup grated cheese
    Handful cherry tomatoes, chopped
    Any other taco fixings you like! 

    What to do:
    {1} Heat up the EVOO in a large non-stick pan.  Add onions and saute for 3-5 minutes.  Add garlic and saute for 2 more minutes.
    {2} Add green pepper, jalapeno and banana pepper to the mix.  Saute 5 minutes.
    {3} Add the rest of your veggies and saute for 3-5 minutes.  While this is working, plop your refried black beans into another pan to warm them up.
    {4} Add the taco seasoning to your veggie panCook for 3 more minutes.
    {5} Grab a tortilla, smear some black beans on the bottom, then add a little of the veggie mix and top with cheese, tomatoes, and anything else you like.
    {6} Enjoy the deliciousness.

    Ready for the breakdown?
    The corn was from a Farmer's Market down the road from our house.  We had already boiled it for corn on the cob over the weekend.
    The summer squash is from JW's sister's garden.
    The onion, eggplant, peppers (all 3 kinds), and tomatoes were all from our CSA share.

    And the refried black beans...have you tried these things yet? 

    I buy these at Meijer and they have roasted jalapenos in them too.  
    soooooo gooooood.

    So that's our Tuesday dinner.  And our Wednesday lunch.

    We still have potatoes, lettuce, tomatoes, more peppers (purple and yellow to be exact), onion, and cucumbers to eat up.

    Jumping on the {green} smoothie bandwagon.

    Welp, I finally did it.  I made a green smoothie.  This actually was not my first attempt at a green smoothie.  I was inspired this fall by my friend, Dr. Dan, a chiropractor and green shake fanatic who posted this video on green shakes/smoothies.  I made one with spinach, water, strawberries, and raspberries.  It wasn't bad.  In fact, I think I kind of liked it :)

    Then the months slipped past and as our CSA box continued to roll in with more produce than we can sometimes figure out what to do with, I saw some more green smoothies.  But that didn't inspire me to take much action.
    I was on (never home)maker the other day (I blog I love to follow, especially now that Ashley is preggo with a little girl too) where they were having smoothie week which reminded me of the concept of green smoothies.  But it still took me awhile to get around to making some.

    Then I came home from school today with some groceries I had grabbed quickly and discovered we had a plethora of spinach.  Also, being 8 months pregnant and not having lunch yet, I needed something filling...and fast.
    I headed to a couple websites and of course to (never home)maker to scope out a few recipes where I found a PB-chocolate green smoothie.  
    Come to momma.

     Of course I can never make a recipe 'as is' so here's what I came up with:
    2 tablespoons peanut butter
    2 tablespoons cocoa powder
    1 teaspoon agave (or you could use honey)
    1 frozen banana (great way to use up the ones that are a lil too brown on the counter)
    3 tablespoons plain low-fat yogurt
    3 handfuls spinach
    1/2 cup milk
    6-7 ice cubes
    Then, mix them all up in the blender until they reach a smooth consistency and you'll get this...

    (Sorry for all the instagram pictures, I was simply too hungry to get the real camera out)

    You can feel free to add more ice cubes for a thicker consistency.  I had enough for a big glass today and a pint sized ball jar for tomorrow (which I stuck in the freezer with a lid on it).  It was aaaaaamaaaaazing.  In fact as I write this, I'm just slurping down the last sip.  And I can feel pretty good about all the ingredients in it...especially the spinach.  

    So I officially jumped on the bandwagon and I think I might just stay on there :)

    Stay tuned soon for a Liza's room update.  Just finishing up sewing her curtains today!!!