Tuesday, April 20, 2010


My sister, Annie, is an amazing decorator....on a budget no less. Every time I've been to her house (which is not often because she lives out of state) I am always amazed at how fantastic it looks on such a little budget. See, her husband just graduated from Dental school a year ago and they have four little kids 6 years to 5 months.

And while I long for cute things to decorate with, but hesitate at spending money frivolously and there for just do without, she finds a way to make/get the cute things and still SAVE money. It's a talent.

Why bring this up?

Because she got featured on How Does She? for her darling, budget friendly little boys room!!

It's an amazing blog that features crafts, recipes, and other DIY activities.

I am so proud of her and she deserves every last bit of recognition she receives.

I just thought I'd help extend her "15 minutes" by spreading the love.

Way to go, Annie!!!!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Repurposed and reorganized a.k.a THE SEWING ROOM IS DONE!

It started with this

A boring, brown, cheep, pressed laminate, bookshelf. I've already taken off the top shelf in this picture. I wanted to use it in my sewing room, but that brown monster did not fit in with the vision.

After a little high gloss white paint and some amazing fabric....voila!

Then I tried to put the shelves back in.........

This is when I realized that if you are going to paint laminate with a high gloss paint, it is in your best interest to prime first. Even if it means taking a whole other day to complete the project. Which at the time seemed unimaginable. But the paint made everything fit a little bit more snug meaning I REALLY had to convince the shelf to move back home. End result?

Sad, I know.
However, with a little touch up paint and sewing book for foreshadowing and interest, here is the final product.

OK, not the final product. I am waiting for these to replace the door knobs. I haven't put the doors back on in that picture yet though.

I KNOW! Aren't those knobs Amazing!

Now, I forgot to take a picture of the sewing room BEFORE we cleared it out. Bummer.

BUT I did take a picture of all of the stuff from the sewing room sitting in my office.........

(Can you believe ALL of that stuff fit into a 5'5" X 10'3" space?!?!?! I really wish I would have taken a picture of the sewing room stuffed to the rafters. Aw well)

......and of the mostly empty sewing room, before I painted.

Well, before I finished painting anyway. See that hint of blue? That's the new color for the room!

After hours and hours of sorting through every.single.thing. that came out of the sewing room originally, my mom and I (thank you SO much mom!!!!) got everything organized. Hooray!

Once more (just for drama)




I am using this space as a cutting/storage room.

Which my family will be grateful for because I will no longer commandeer the kitchen island with my crafty-cutting madness.

The actual sewing will go on in the office.
(This is the same space where we put all the stuff from the sewing room so the room could be painted and the stuff organized---looks way bigger without all that stuff in there!)

That way I can keep an eye on the kids better, I won't freeze in the winter (the windows are old and need replacing. Especially in that sewing room), PLUS there's a T.V. in the office for background noise when I sew late at night.

Don't worry. I have plans for that space too. Paint, vinyl (Annie get ready for a call soon), etc.

I plan on painting the sewing furniture white and the office furniture black. Moving the "office" pictures to the office side, putting up vinyl on the wall behind the "sewing" side to define the two spaces.......

I found that awesome sewing table at D.I. for $15! It had an old sewing machine in it.....but that's for another post.

There are a few more "decorating" things to do in the sewing room. I normally do not dig lighter colored wood. But I love how that old school desk Kevin and I bought from an auction USU had for their old class room junk feels with the blue walls. Plus my cutting mat fits like a glove!!!

AND it perfectly houses all of my ribbons.

The drawer just came that way. *Sigh*

I want to add some dimension to the desk with white, cherry blossm-esque vinyl running along the sides and back. Or maybe something like this.

Also picture a few apothecary jars housing my fabric scraps, like this, sitting on the window sill right next to the ceramic plate my Grandma Gertrude painted.

Oh, and curtains. The window needs curtains.

As well as a good cleaning.

And eventually all the face plates and outlets will be white.

I am toying with the idea of a white peg board on the wall opposite the window,

to hang scissors, marking pens, and other sewing items.

But decorating is the easy part.

I keep walking in there just to see if it's really my space.

Organizing may be hard for me to achieve, but I sure know how to appreciate it once I finally get there!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sweet thing

Karaia has lost 3 teeth in 4 days!

The kid is struggling to find things she can eat. She has pulled out these last three all by herself. She loves it. Just like her dad. After the high of pulling this last tooth out wore off a bit, she came upstairs in tears. When I asked why she was crying she said,

"I feel like Dad feels left out because he likes to pull out teeth, but I've been pulling out my teeth myself."


I sent her on her way to go find her dad. He let her know he has had his fair share of pulling teeth and as long as she still enjoys it, to right on ahead, he won't feel left out.

I love seeing this softer side of Karaia.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


So the beginning of this week found me in a super funk. I felt, small, unaccomplished, untalented, and below par. Part of it was due to the reality of the continuation of my fabric design quest. The other part was the feeling of not meeting my motherhood potential. And a third part belonged to the sore throat I was sporting.

But today, today the sun is out. The sore throat and other ailments are still here, but less than before. The kids and I have quite enjoyed each other's company. And the sun is OUT!

I never cease to marvel at how much my mood can be effected by the weather.

Also, today is my mom's 52 birthday! Happy Birthday, Mom.

She is a women who uses more energy than she has, sees the world as mostly good, and loves those in her life. I have learned a lot from and owe her much.

I love you, Mom.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


I finally got the email from Jina today.

The good news is at least there was constructive criticism in the email.

The bad (expected) news is that they are not accepting my designs.

I knew that's what the email would say. I just needed the door fully closed.

I have already contacted a half a dozen other manufacturers and will send off the designs to Robert Kaufman Co. tomorrow.

It will happen. But not if I give up :)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

General Conference

It's important to understand why I blog.

It's meant to be an outlet for my feelings, validation for my thoughts and creative efforts, as well as documentation of my life so my children will have something to refer to if I leave early, go crazy, or become too old to remember accurately.

Keeping that in mind, this next thought is intended to help my children when they have young children of their own. I hope. And perhaps give them insight to any unpleasant memories they may have of me as a young mother. I pray those are few and difficult to recall.

General Conference comes every 6 months. I remember, as a young girl, thinking it lasted forever! Seriously, the speakers talked SO long and it was for two........long...........days.

The older I've gotten the more and more I've looked forward to conference and marveled at how fast it goes by. I cherish my time soaked in Gospel topics.

Now cut to my kids. I remember being their age and dreading Conference, so I get it. I understand it's hard. I try and give them lots of gospel oriented things to do. Conference bingo. Count and record how many times you hear certain words. Cut, color, tape, conference Easter basket. And many more.

But every 6 months, inevitably as someone is giving a wonderful message on the significance of being a loving, patient, parent, I find myself short of temper that my children are giggling, extremely loud, whining.......children. Someone who may or may not have recently said in a less than kind manner, "You are making the Spirit leave!" Nice. It goes both ways Lady.


I want my children to love the Gospel as much as I do. But I do not want to force it on them. I struggle with the balance of teaching reverence vs. forcing reverence. Teaching how to make correct choices vs. forcing correct choices. It is such a fine line.

After a good, long, frustrated cry in the shower, the end of conference was definitely better than the beginning. So there is hope that my efforts are taking root and maybe, just maybe I'll get this mothering thing right during General Conference one of these days.

Until then, I want it to be known that I am trying. With all my might. I'm not perfect, or even good at it, but I hope at least I'm heading in the right direction.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Field Trip

I try and be an active parent in my children's school experience. Karaia's teacher, this year, hasn't needed as much weekly assistance, but I have helped out with the Halloween and the Valentine parties. Parties take a lot of preparation, but I have been always happy to do it.

Despite what I thought was showing Karaia I was invested in her life, she was insistent that I just HAD to come on a field trip. Every time she would mention it her big blue eyes would get misty. Then she started talking to Mrs. Pickett about her heart's desire.

I don't remember my mom coming on any field trips, but I don't remember caring one way or the other about it. But to Karaia, it was huge.

My reservation was not about going on the field trip, it was about finding a babysitter for that long in the middle of the day. My boys are young and my friends have young children of their own. My mom is awesome to watch the kids, but struggles, because of health reasons and her inability to say, "No" to a grandchild's request to play with them, with long periods of babysitting. During this time Candace was in session and working super long days, or I would have asked her.

However, when Karaia's teacher started sending notes home with ALL of the field trip days and letting me know through phone conversations about how tender Karaia was with this subject, I knew it was more important than I realized.

My mom OK'd her service (it was a long day for her, but she did great) and Karaia got her mom to come on a field trip! We went in Feb. to Abravanel Hall and the Zoo. We saw Chinese and Mongolian performers. The kids did really well despite the long program. Here are a few pre-show pictures with Karaia's best friend, Danielle.

The zoo was freezing!!! I think I saw one other family their. Maybe. If I squinted really hard

Karaia and Danielle trying to eat quickly before their fingers froze.

There were 4 girls in my group. We called ourselves the Cheetah Girls. We had a hand signal and everything. That's right. We are cool like that. Go Cheetah Girls.....growl.

I am so thankful this little grown-up girl is mine. She is crazy and delightful. Spontaneous and reserved. Most of all, very loving.

I look forward to more field trip memories with her.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Deep thoughts.....

......by Karaia

"Mom, you know if you have an ice cream cone and you are riding a bike, the ice cream will fall off the cone. It will also fall if you are running OR if you trip. "