Thursday, October 10, 2019

It's Fall!

M has an intense fascination with shoes. She wears shoes, all the time. She changes shoes several times a day. Potty training and shoes do not go hand in hand. When you have to go potty four times an hour, it gets old real fast trying to get pants off and on around toddler shoes. Plus they smell terrible! And I get stepped on almost as many times in an hour as M has to go potty. This is life.

We continue to improve our new apartment.We purchased an area rug for the living area, and after upcoming repairs in the girls' room I have plans to repaint, hang pictures, put up M's swing, and hopefully get a lamp for better lighting. I have the desire for M to enjoy playing in her room (without being naughty) once it gets too cold to go outside. She's getting to that age where she needs to expend energy or we'll both go crazy.

Most of what sewing I am getting done is winter clothes for the girls: flannel nightgowns, fleece pajama pants, long sleeved T-shirts. I still enjoy creating even practical clothes for them, because it's a need that I can take care of myself. And they still look cute whether I make them fancy dresses or not!

So it's Fall now- for real! I bought our traditional cinnamon broom and spiced cider from Trader Joe's today. When we moved to Ft. Worth, I missed Fall. John and I had fun visiting all the health food stores in the area, and the spiced cider and cinnamon broom gave an appearance of Fall even when there was none- so it's an official family tradition now. I also bought some nice cheese, which said on the label it was soaked in sayah, but I didn't know what that was. Apparently it's a wine. Oh well!

Saturday, July 20, 2019

More Improvements

The stick is up(no picture yet)

The patio progresses:

The backsplash is done:

Now to wait for cooler temperatures to finish the patio!

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Paint and Decor

The shelves

We were plugging along getting our B Suite where we(I) wanted it, and then we got sick. But the stencil border is done, and the kitchen shelves are up, and I love them. A few more touches and I hope to host a tea.

One, this stick. It's a stick we got off the lawn at Southwestern right after we arrived, and used it to prop open our very old, very heavy, very broken bedroom window. A very ordinary thing, but somewhere along the way we got attached to the stick and it moved with us. Now it's going to be sanded and hung on the wall to look something like this:

The other very important thing is the backsplash. It just needs to go up for the sake of our kitchen wall, but I have to paint it first!

 This is just a start of the ferns and lilies of the valley I plan to put on the backsplash. It may take a while!

Thursday, June 6, 2019

The Plans

We've been here less than two weeks and things are finally unpacked just enough to think about decorating projects. Here's the short list of the big things:

Up and down stencils
Stenciled wall borders. I've been reading a bit about stenciled walls in colonial New England, and it's really interesting: traveling artists would take their stencils from house to house and decorate the walls, since wallpaper was yet to be available. It really struck a chord with me, after living in a drab off-white apartment for three years- and I've always loved painting things around me. This site was particularly interesting. Anyway, while most of the reproduced stencils were too busy for my space, I found some that I felt went well and started going at it.

Across stencils

 Painted lampshades. Another something that appealed to me. I've been watching home decor shows ever since we started getting ready to move, and this clip mentions painted lampshades. The lady's house is waaaay to busy for me, but just the deep colors seemed so warm.

This is my first try. I think it's hideous.

Kitchen shelves and cabinet knobs-an obvious, immediate need.

The knobs need an adjustment but I like the handles

 A backsplash- another practical need. But I'm determined to make it pretty.

Wood for the backsplash waiting to be painted and sealed.

Also on the list, curtains, quilt display, a garden space, an attractive patio with hammocks for the girls, and a sewing space. New chair covers, organize the bookshelves, make a lace teepee for the girls' room. How long with all that take me?????

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Decorating my new place

So our new apartment is a walk-out basement that was finished just for us! And since it's owned by my parents, I got a bit of say in a few things. Which was nice. Mom and I quibbled back and forth on various items and it's really pretty hard to pick paint colors via a computer screen, but the walls are yellow and the bedroom is grey and basically everything is a least a little like what I was hoping for.

Kitchen-Living-Dining Room, with sliding doors into the new second (Grey) bedroom

Considering that the walls were all unfinished(and covered in teenage graffiti), ceiling was open, and the floor was plain concrete, it's quite a change.

Grey bedroom- fresh paint!
Most of the work was in the big room. The bathroom also got a new floor, and the window trim got painted, plus a lot of little jobs.

New floor- with heating! Which will be great once it's connected.
So there's what I had to work with when we moved in. A clean slate and lots of Pinterest ideas which I hope to photograph as I go along.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Moving along...Boxed in....

Baking with two babies is hard. Today we made muffins: a standard go-to in our house for breakfast or a special snack. Once batch lasts for several days, and they can be healthy, AND still have chocolate chips. Today Baby E was in the high chair and Baby M was standing in the chair next to me at the table as we made muffins.

I cracked an egg into the bowl. It looked fishy. I decided to fish it back out with a ladle and throw it out. While I was taking it away, in the ladle, Baby E grabbed the carton of eggs and dropped it on the floor. There were only two eggs in it, but one broke and one just cracked- so I used the cracked one. No one will want to eat my baking after reading this. Baby M meanwhile got batter everywhere and all over herself. But overall everyone still enjoyed the end result: pumpkin bread. And muffins.

Our move date is three weeks away. Stress meter is rising. Boxes are piling. I can't wait to be settled again.

What will I not miss? The strong scent of kimchi wafting daily from next door. The neighbors' toddler who stays up until 10pm every night. The sound of sirens wailing from police cars and fire trucks every day. Generally having people always around just because we're in the city. Off-white walls. John being in school- so glad to be nearly done with that.

What will I miss? Church people. Having John home for lunch.

Three more weeks.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Marching would be good for us...

March so far has been about food. John's birthday; we made cookies.

We had a guest; we made cake(we were supposed to have more than one guest but the others couldn't come so there we were with a whole cake to ourselves).

We went on a short, sleepless vacation; we ate out for every meal. We went with the goal of eating good food, and it was. Artisan pizza, donuts, smoked meat sandwiches, grilled salmon BLT, and amazing burgers as the last meal.

Lots of good food. Now if only we could get some good sleep....

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

At Night

The other night John mumbled a very concerned incoherent sentence in his sleep. I asked him, are you saying something? He replied, I'm just babbling, I guess. And then we went back to sleep.

Then yesterday, Baby E had a very upset stomach. Lots of crying and screaming all day long, up until 10pm. Finally we all could go to bed. John suggested we pray for poor Baby E. So he started, Lord please help Baby E.... was I just praying? He had dozed off in the few seconds between and carried on the conversation with barely a hitch.

We're sure getting tired of baby feedings at 4am and toddler wakings at 6am!

Thursday, February 28, 2019


We girls don't get out much so little things like getting groceries is a big deal these days! Usually I do my weekly shopping in two different stores for the choices of meat and produce I use. If John isn't free and I have to take the girls with me, it's like shopping as Christian in Pilgrims' Progress, before he loses his burden... maybe something like being a pack mule? It's just hard to go shopping with a baby and a toddler.

When John's schedule does accommodate, I feed the baby and then rush frantically off to buy everything needed for a week of eating.

Today I did the feed and rush. However, a tiny sprinkling of ice caused terrible traffic, delayed school, and one traffic light out that I saw. It was ridiculous- the roads were fine. But I sat in traffic for way too long to get to the store. It made me think, at least when we move the winter traffic will be bad for a reason!

Store number one. Ran around frantically grabbing things off the shelf. Cursed the cost of diapers. Bought something that could pass as a birthday present for John. Store number two. Slightly more relaxed. Resisted the temptation of popcorn, protein bars, and chocolate. Aimed to use my $5 off of $30 coupon. The fellow in front of me in line was one of those old guy types who likes to joke it up with everyone, so we chatted about cilantro and vegans. Then he offered to pay for my groceries, up to $25. I had my coupon, but my order came to $29.60! I had to spend .40 more. So I paid for the tomato of the lady behind me, used the coupon, the gentleman paid for $25, and I had $1.05 left to pay. It was amusing, and, considering the price of diapers, really nice.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

It's February

Last night we had breakfast for dinner, and it reminded me why we don't have breakfast for breakfast. It's too time consuming! Tasty though- bacon, omelet with chipotle gouda, home-made wheat toast, and sparkling blackberry juice kombucha.

After dinner I was complaining to John about our neighbors, again. They were really pretty quiet as neighbors until they had a little boy. Turns out he's a toddler night owl, and every evening it sounds like someone is having a raucous bath at 9:30pm, or later. I shake my fist at the walls while getting the baby to sleep and hope our next neighbors- my family- will be quieter after nightfall!

We have just three months before we move over to those new neighbors. I was thinking of buying a container of oats, because we're almost out. But then I thought, would we eat a whole container of oats in three months? Probably not. Strike that off the grocery list because I can't stand to waste! We're going oatless.

Friday, January 25, 2019

New things

So lately I bought paprika for the first time ever, made puppy chow for the first time ever, and made ham bowl puff for the first time in years. Then this week while I was bagging my groceries before heading to the car a crazy man was wandering the parking lot, the manager had  to be called, but he was gone by the time I got out there so I missed it.

This week has been a wash with spit up and not much else. Baby E decided to gift us all with regurgitated milk in abundance, and the only reason I can think of for this week's terrible milk mess is possibly a growth spurt, or teething. She's definitely teething, anyway.

Our last semester has started. John's away to school and I'm impatient for school to be really over. I'm cleaning out the apartment as much as I can(which is going pretty slowly) and everything that we haven't used in the last three years is in jeopardy of being given away. Casserole dish? Gone. Baby shampoo? Gone. Fabric scraps? Gone. I love it. The babies keep me on my toes, and I know packing everything up and actually moving will probably be stressful, so I want to get a head start. It takes me so long to get anything done, better start now. I can't look away from M for a few seconds without her getting into trouble. This week her socks went into the toilet. I tried to include her in baking; it was stressful. At least she got to crack the eggs. Then after that mess she went and got her dirty sweater out of the laundry and started licking muffin batter off of it. Sigh. She's pretty cute, though, and watching her grow and learn is always enjoyable.