Saturday, January 24, 2009

Hunka - Hunka - Burnin' LOVE!

No, this post won't be completely dedicated to my sweep-me-off-my-feet fantastic husband but more to the holiday which celebrates the wonderful bond that holds us together - LOVE! I love Valentines day! Not really for the little gifts of chocolate, flowers, and jewelry (which I only ever got from my parents until I met Peter...) but for the fun, whimsical feeling of puppy love it brings with all the paper hearts and girly embellishments to your decor.  I have been scanning the web a little lately (because we FINALLY have the internet at home!!!!) and have found some great blogs with marvelous Valentines day decoration ideas!! 

I haven't begun on my own yet because every time I sit down to do a craft of some sort (which hasn't been very often lately...) I feel a pang of guilt shoot through me because I haven't gotten any of my sweet Ella's projects done for her nursery (or clothing for that matter). Today however there will be time made for me to work on a few little projects all of which will find a photo op spotlight on this blog in the next few weeks.

Ok, first off on my list of V-day inspiration is none other than my rockin aunt, Tiff. She has two blogs, fourlittleloves and The Children's Nest - both sources of wonder and inspiration as she is one of the most creative people I have ever met! I saw this more than cute banner she made for her front entry way and I now must have one for myself - and I think I know the perfect place for it to hang! On the Children's Nest she has also recently posted a TON of great ideas that are really easy and again look adorable! 
After rummaging around her Love fest for a bit I linked over to Domestic Fashionistas blog who has given us a visual tour of all her little V-day additions and I must say that I LOVE IT! This woman is a real bargain hunter, you can tell! 

Of course you can always rely on the fall back - Martha - she will never cease with fantastic ideas and crafts for every holiday! 

Matthew Mead also has provide some fun looking recipes for Valentines Day - if you have a subscription to his site you can go check it out - this one looks great and easy! To give you a
 hint, it is a lot like those little pretzel hugs that I made during Christmas time but instead of using a Hug you just drizzle the mallow with dark chocolate and place the candy on top (oh geeze, now I have given away the whole recipe...) 
Also a new site I have stumbled upon is One Pretty Thing - she also has collected great V-day ideas from around the web and compiled them into a few pics and links to all their wonders... go check that out for sure! 

If you have done your searching and you have found the ultimate source for great Valentintes ideas, PLEASE post them in the comments so we can all share. 

Can't wait to see what you all have created too - so let us know if you have posted something marvelous about the holiday of LOVE! 

Friday, January 23, 2009

My baby is HUGE!

So we went in for our 2nd 1 week appointment with the Dr. today. Things are going wonderful, gained 4 lbs, feet are swelling but the Dr. isn't too concerned, I have DILATED to a 2! and my cervix is 30% effaced. 

Things are happening fast and I am extremely uncomfortable all the time now. I was doing pretty good there until about last Sunday and then it hit me all at once, my legs would get really restless and sometimes feel like the nerves were being pinched! I have horrible heartburn all the time it seems and sleeping is near to impossible! 

She has really started to drop because I have to use the potty quite frequently and today when the Dr. checked me he said he could feel her head through my cervix so she is head down and ready to go! 

I have also started getting little contractions (probably the Braxton Hicks) when I stand up from a seated position or get out of bed in the morning. 

We are still slowly getting ready (although I think today's Dr visit has kicked us a little more into gear...) 

Once I get things a bit more pulled together in the Nursery I will post pictures. But for now, you can go check out this great site where I have been getting a BUNCH of inspiration... Ohdeedoh

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Save the Toys!

I have been on a HUGE Handmade/wooden toy kick. I just love the vintage, homemade feel to them. I think I am just sick of the plastic, NOISY children's toys and I don't know that I am ready to deal with that with a baby coming. I was so excited to have all kinds of wooden and handmade toys for our little girl to play with -- but then -- my world came crashing down when I found out that the Consumer Products Safety Commission has passed a law in which it requires all toys to go through major testing which would cost between $300 - $4,000 per toy design! How can those individual toy makers make it? 

Realize that this means Etsy will cease to operate unless those people are willing to pay the testing costs! AND toy prices will likely skyrocket due to their increased cost to safely test the toys. 

Do your part and put your name behind the petition to stop this madness! I want my handmade toys! 


Friday, January 16, 2009

Mini Lesson: Setting Goals

Hopefully you all had a wonderful time ringing in the New Year! Peter and I had a great time together with some of our friends.

We have decided to make setting goals a huge part of our 2009.
"Your ability to discipline yourself to set clear goals, and then to work toward them everyday, will do more to guarantee your success than any other single factor. You've heard it said that, "You can't hit a target you can't see." "If you don't know where you're going, any road will get you there." (The Power of Discipline by Brian Tracy) 

As we each work hard everyday towards achieving something - who really knows what it is most days - there is a mental check list that runs through our mind. If this wasn't so how would anyone get anything done? Let me suggest to you, putting that mental check list down on paper. "Think in INK!" At work I have a desk top calendar on which I make notes with little squares next to them which I can check off as I go. For the most part, human beings are results driven creatures. We have to see and feel success in order to keep us motivated. Even though this year has just begun and Peter and I haven't fully put down all our goals onto paper, I have felt such a change in my commitment towards the things we want to achieve and have set as our goals. 
With only 5 weeks left until my due date with our little bundle of joy, I feel this is a HUGE step in the right direction for me. If you ever played sports in high school you will understand this strange phenomena which comes about when you were so overbooked that you barely had time to get everything done in one day and then when your sport ends, all of the sudden you have loads of time on your hands and nothing gets done! I can't quite explain it but I had a sick feeling that if I didn't start to discipline myself now, before the baby comes, I would end up wasting a LOT of time - and I can't handle wasted time. 

Another thing which Brian Tracy mentions in The Power of Discipline is that "Goals that are not written down and developed into plans are like bullets without powder in the cartridge. People with unwritten goals go through life shooting blanks. Because they think they already have goals, they never engage in the hard, discipline effort of goal setting, the master skill of success."

This is how I have felt in the past; ever setting goals {either in my mind or written in a place to never be seen again} but never really achieving them because I didn't put the effort into implementing them into a plan. 

Over to the left side of the blog I put in a new widget - this is one of the goals Peter and I have set for ourselves: Read 2 self-improvement books each month. These books can range from helping us become better parents, expanding our belief in ourselves, improving our knowledge of wise money management, developing leadership skills, and bringing our spiritual lives to a higher level. 
*Isn't my hubby one good lookin' man??? This picture was taken on a climb he did with his dad of Mt. Rainier* 
One way that has helped Peter and I break down our goal setting is we came up with 4 basic areas of life; Mental, Physical, Spiritual, and Relationship (see Luke 2:52). We come together at the beginning of each month to set our bigger monthly goals in accordance with those 4 areas mentioned above. Then each week we take Sunday night before we go to bed to set a 1 little goal in each of the 4 areas that correspond with the bigger monthly goals which we follow up with each other each night during the week. 

Because we are both committed to this system it has worked wonders for us! I encourage you to sit down with your spouse, parent, best friend or who ever you feel can support you and you can provide support for in setting goals. Set goals with them and hold each other accountable. "The simplest answer is that, if you have a clear goal and plan to achieve it, you focus is fixed on a straight line from start to finish."

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Bloglight: Tracy Porter

I love it when my mom sends me links to wonderful websites that are so full of goodness that it blows my mind! This happened the other day while I was at work and luckily the baby is getting so big now and pushing on my bladder more that I have to take frequent potty breaks to bring me back into reality and back to work... 

The site that unfolded beautifully before my eyes is that of designer extraordinaire, Tracy Porter. She is pretty much the ultimate woman. Clothing designer, interior decorator, model, and most importantly Mom of 4 cute little boys. 
I continue to soak in her fabulous eclectic style with touches of vintage, bohemian, and modern all thrown together to create masterpieces of beauty. It has been quite some time since I was last inspired so much! 
Tracy shares little insights into her creative genius mind with Tracy TV - little videos of her showing things from setting a table, re-vamping old shoes with broken jewelry and other fun finds, and creating beautiful vignettes that make your home feel so much more pulled together and full of class. 
The things she actually sells are flat out gorgeous however WAY out of my current price range but if you like the look from Anthropologie, you will LOVE Tracy! But she is not a snobby designer who won't wear anything but clothing items that cost over $300 and are strictly Italian made - she has some videos where she talks about her vintage finds which she got for $20 at the flea market or just utilizing the things you already have in your home. I love her creative and carefree flair that just looks so lived in and yet chic. 
I think the best way I can describe Tracy's style would be effortless glam. Some of her things are a little over the top for my taste but she has magnificent ideas nonetheless and I would definately plan on setting a few days aside to soak in all her goodness!