Friday, June 29, 2012

Show Us Your Life -- Kid's Rooms and Four Years!

Today Kelly is asking us to show our kids' rooms. We have two kids' rooms for the first time ever. (Rachel shared with us until we moved.) This is super-exciting for me as you may remember from my master bedroom SUYL post! We also have a (sort of) play space for Sam (mostly) which he loves!

First the play space. It's in our basement which is a bit gross otherwise but it does provide a space for Sam where Rachel doesn't really get into his stuff. Dave always cleans it up after Sam has been playing down there but I leave it a mess. So since I took this picture after Dave had cleaned up, but before Sam had been down there, this is what it looked like. The pink rocking chair is one my grandparents bought especially for my mom and she has now passed it on to us. My mom has always loved it because she was the sixth of seven children but her parents bought it just for her.

Now for Sam's room. The main feature of Sam's room is his name EVERYWHERE! Sam is just over three and we help him clean up his room about once a day. Otherwise it looks more or less like this...

When you enter Sam's room the first thing you see is this bookshelf which my dad made for me when I was about ten. The dresser was also mine from when I was little. My sister-in-law painted the owl for us for our wedding. Beside the shelves you can see a craft I made during a program I did with Sam when he was nine months old. It's a mold of his hand and foot on a rainbow painted canvas with his name in green letters.

This is the rocking chair and stool we got from my mom and dad when we moved out to Edmonton. When we found out we were pregnant with Sam it went into the nursery and it's where I've rocked him since he was a baby. His name picture on this wall was made by my dear friend Sheri using his hand prints. The IKEA lights we bought especially for his nursery before he was born. Dave got the brightly printed pillowcover in China on a work trip when I was three months pregnant.

This is Sam's big boy bed which we bought when we moved to Ontario. Sam loves it and picked out the duvet cover himself. The name letters on the wall were a big brother gift from my friend Sheri. (You can see the progress of that craft here.) Sam loves maps and so we decided to hang this one above his bed. He loves looking at it. Sam also picked out his number baskets, by his bed, as part of his birthday present.
Looking towards the door you can see the tree clock Dave made when he was in Grade 7 and Sam's name letters from Austria on his door. Dave also drew the picture of the hockey player which is framed on the top shelf. He was four when he drew it.

Now come on in to Rachel's room, which showcases, once again, how we have generous friends! This is Rachel's closet filled with clothes we got as hand me downs, her name letters from my friend Sheri, and her change table. The change table was built by my friend Janice's father for their kids and Janice and Tim passed it on to us when they were done with it. It's gorgeous and I changed many a diaper on here long before I had my own kids!

Rachel's rocking chair was given to us by friends in Edmonton who didn't want it anymore. We got Rachel her own set of IKEA lights when we moved. Rachel's dresser matches Sam's and used to be my sister's. The sheep pillow was made by my sister-in-law Erin for Rachel for Christmas.

Rachel's crib, and the crib bedding, was passed on to us from Tim and Janice. Again, I tucked both of their kids into this crib on numerous occasions before being able to use it for Rachel. The crib bedding we actually got from them when we were expecting Sam but we had a different crib when we were in Edmonton. (Cribs are a little more complicated to take on an airplane then crib bedding!) The mobile above Rachel's bed was knitted for her by our dear friend Marika and the flamingo picture was made, with Rachel's hand prints, by Sheri again! You can see both hand print name pictures up close here. The artwork above Rachel's crib was inspired after reading the SUYL Living Room posts, and seeing a couple of people link to this tutorial. I knew I wanted one for my own and I decided the spot above Rachel's crib was the perfect place for it. (You can click here to see my experience of following the tutorial and a closer-up view of the art. And I am NOT an artist so if I can do it, anyone can!)
I can't show you our kids' rooms without also including a picture of the two people who enjoy them the most. Here are Sam and Rachel. Sam is just over three and Rachel turned one last week. This was a few weeks ago before church.
So this has nothing to do with Show Us Your Life (well I guess it does but it's not about our kids' spaces) but I can't end without mentioning that today is my and Dave's fourth wedding anniversary!!! It's been a great, full, crazy four years and tonight we are celebrating by going to a baseball game! I am super-excited about this! Check back tomorrow to see how it went. Until then enjoy this picture from our wedding.

Thanks for reading this entire loooong post. I look forward to seeing all your kids' (or future kids') rooms but first I have to catch up on all the master bedrooms and dining rooms. Yep, I'm a few weeks behind :)

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Art For Rachel's Room

So a few weeks ago I was browsing through Every. Single. Link. on Kelly's Korner's Show Us Your Life Living Rooms and a couple of blogs (I can't remember which ones or I would have linked to them) had similar awesome paintings in their living rooms. And they both linked to this tutorial and I thought, "That looks pretty easy and awesome and I want to do it." But I didn't know where to put it. And then I remembered the big blank wall by the crib in Rachel's room. So Dave and I went to Michael's and bought some supplies. We decided to go with pastel-like colours since it's for a baby after all.

The next step was spray-painting the canvas.
That made me nervous but I did it and it was actually kind of fun.
Except the part where the bug flew into the paint
and died there but we'll ignore that memory.
And Dave turned the bug into a stick so it all worked out
and you can't even see it.

The real arty part of this painting was doing the sticks so I made Dave do it.
I am NOT. AT. ALL. arty so that worked for me.
And he did a lovely job.

See how proud he is of his sticks.
And don't they look awesome?

Squirting the paint onto the paper plate was the easiest job thus far.
And I rocked at doing it!

Then I had to paint the dots.
I used sponces (which is actually a real art supply.
Unless someone spelled "sponges" wrong which I wouldn't discount.)
I was so nervous about this part that it took me almost
two weeks to get up the nerve to do it.
And it was just dabbing circles in random spots.
Have I mentioned I am NOT an artist?!?!

Getting a little more comfortable with the sponce-dotting-technique.
Dave was right beside me the whole time holding my hand.
Also known as rinsing out my sponces so I didn't have to and
offering advice as to where more circles should go.
(Aside: Are these circles? Are these dots? What's the difference?)

The completed painting. I was pretty proud of myself at this point.

And voila! The painting hanging in the
no-longer-empty-spot above Rachel's crib.
I think it looks exactly right.
And really, if I can do this, then anyone can do this.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Other June Happenings

So besides celebrating birthdays and visiting with my parents we have actually been doing other things in June, believe it or not! Here are some random photos, in no particular order, which give you an idea of how we've been spending some of our time.

A lot of time has been spent in the new sandbox, especially by Sam. He is so excited about being out there and, unlike Rachel, I can trust him to be outside by himself and to not eat the sand! The best part of the sandbox is that Rachel and Sam have reached an agreement on how to play in there together. The other day I got to sit in a lawnchair and read a book while they played. Ahhhhh!

Just after her birthday Miss Rachel learned how to stand. She loves to pull herself up anywhere and stand and yell. It's even better if she can let go and drum on something -- a table, a chair, her parents and sibling!

The day my parents left, Tessa and Willem's school had a fun fair. We decided to go and check it out. Sam participated in the games and actually got the golf ball in the hole as well as the bean bag in the mouth. He was thrilled with his prizes :)

Sam ate popcorn and got his face painted while Rachel hung out and observed all the action.

And Sam enjoyed splashing in the puddles left by the rain.
On Sam's last day of Sunday School they planted lettuce and Sam has been enjoying watching it grow. On the left is a picture two days after he planted it and it had just sprouted. Sam was quite excited about it. On the right is a picture of it yesterday. This stuff is fast growing which works quite well for an impatient three year old who wants to see it grow everyday!

Our daylilies have been blooming and every day are covered in flowers. They are so beautiful.

We went out to New Hamburg to celebrate Shabbat with Dave's family and Sam stayed for an overnight. He was so excited about it!
And the next day we drove Rachel out for the day so Dave and I could have some time. What did we do with a whole day free of our children -- exciting things like doing errands (we got Sam a new carseat so that Rachel can have his old one, we picked up benches for a table we are getting from Tanya, we did groceries), we weeded the boulevard and we finished a painting for Rachel's room (more on that later.) It was fun and exciting times around here I tell you!

I was trying to get a decent picture of the kids the other morning. Yeah, not so much. I think Rachel actually IS trying to smile in this picture. She's just failing miserably.

Speaking of the kids they have been playing together so nicely these past few weeks. I don't know what game was going on here (Make a Big Mess, maybe?) but they were both laughing hysterically! I love moments like this. (And yes, it was cold enough that we were all wearing pants. Crazy weather.)

I went to bookclub the other night and Sam did dishes and played playdough...

...while Rachel hung out and ate strawberries. I think Dave was around somewhere too!

And I think I have been deadheading flowers too much with Rachel in attendance because yesterday morning I turned around and found this...

And even though she's crawling away innocently, I see the evidence of the flower petals on the ground. I guess it's time to teach her about when flowers need to go since she hasn't quite grasped that concept yet!

So that was just a taste of other things which have been happening this month. Now it's time for more adventures!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Things That Grow In My Garden... Part 4

So it's been two weeks since I last posted and changes abound. Sadly, not all of them are good.
The Million Bells hanging on our porch is in sad shape. I'm tempted to cut it all back and see what it does. It's very gangly but not very floriferous. (Good word, eh?!) If I cut it back it might help improve the situation. The lettuce basket has a new lease on life thanks to some seedlings we picked up through our CSA. And Sam has some Sunday School "salad" (as he calls it) to plant in there as well.

These three baskets have all lost plants since last time. Something keeps digging them up and stealing them. I am NOT impressed. And I think it's a squirrel. sigh. However we'll keep watering them and trying to keep the rest of the plants. I'm very sad about this.
Our front is looking very green and full of flowers thanks to the hot weather which necessitated a change in location for our upper porch baskets. More on that in a bit. And yes, we have a stair climber on our hands folks. See her making her escape?!

The bed hasn't changed much and I recognize these aren't the best pictures. The flowers in here stay pretty happy in general and that's a good thing. And oh my word, those tomatoes are taking off. (And possibly taking over as well.) The Million Bells basket isn't hanging because I needed to water it and Dave hasn't had time to hang it back up. And I just don't feel like jumping on and off the fence just to hang it.

We had three days of 30+C weather and the upstairs porch plants were suffering. Badly. So we (my mom and I) moved them downstairs. My dad punched holes in the bottom of the gerbera watering can to help with drainage and they are going nuts people! I think I counted six blooms on that plant this morning. The petunia (and other stuff that I don't know what it is) planter got cut back by my mom. It's looking very green right now and I am looking forward to it taking off again. And the petunia planter was also given a new lease on life (by my mom!) and is looking pretty good right now.

So that's what is growing (or not) in my garden this week.