August 30, 2011

times are a'changin'

What started last week on my birthday is finally finished.
Jack has lost his first tooth.
That consequently happened yesterday on the very same day that my daughter suddenly snapped out of her baby language of turning any "er" sound into a long eeeee sound.
Daughter=daughtee
Water=watee
here=hee

The cutest darn thing you ever did hear....come ovee hee and we'll have a drink of watee.....
oh, melt my ever livin' heart.
Taken Saturday night at the local car show.

Why would God allow these two milestones in one day?
Who knows other than He may very well be trying to kill me.
This parenting thing is hard...and I know from life that hard things get harder, (hardee)
and my heartstrings will be pulled and stretched hardee and hardee till I have to cry myself to sleep.

The funny thing is though, that these hard things are not hard for the kids.
They love them.
Jack couldn't have been more excited if he'd have woken up in a cup a chocolate pudding...
he was elated.

This stuff is hard on this mama.
I smile and set my voice real high in that excited way, so they know I'm proud...
and I am, but still.
Is there ever big love without some element of big heartache too?


Looking for the positives in my milestone day,
xo,
{alicia}

August 29, 2011

good morning, monday


Do your photos get stuck in your camera or in a file somewhere on your hard drive and then you never see them again? Ok, so I'm not the only one??
These pics were taken not this past weekend, but the weekend before...or maybe the weekend before that...I don't even know now. Geesh!

I need to get better about that!

NoNo's and BenBen

This weekend flew by, just like all the others...
I so wanted to be completely done with my school planning but it just didn't happen that way.
I got a lot done, but still have lots to do and school starts in um....7 days!
Most of the work is done, but now I need to organize and tie up loose ends.
I love this about the fall though, getting everything in it's place and organized...and you gotta love those sharp crayons.

My siesta and moi (omg! am I TRI-lingual!?) posing for a funny mirror...try scary mirror that's super super dirty!

My fall etsy line is ALMOST finished! Yeah!!
I have a few finishing touches and then photos (which take forever) and then the big reveal ;) I really hope you think it's as cool as I'm making it out to be.
I'm thinkin' Friday or Saturday it should be listed....
The theme for this fall line is DINNERTIME! Pretty much everything has a dining room/eat theme to it. I'm so excited to show ya!

OH! and don't forget my summer stuff is 40% off...there's banners, bags, and some other stuff I can't remember now...it's early. 


If I'm a little AWOL here this week, you know why now...school and etsy. Etsy and school.
I shared a while back that I have really scaled down my life these last few months.
I was helping or involved in several different areas and groups and life was just getting tooooo crazy.
It feels good now to just have my focus be on home and homeschooling and my business.

So have a great week!! I've got every day this week planned out, so if all goes according to plan, (which it hardly ever does, but we can dream, right?) we shall have a very successful week here in my casa :)

This. is. funny.  We are the lucky folks that get to live in the city where the author of the Wizard of Oz was born.  Lucky that is, if the WoO doesn't scare the pee out of ya, like it does to lots of people. We have a whole park dedicated to the WoO!Here's my little munchkin beside a "real" munchkin. She does not dig!



xo,
{alicia}








Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

August 26, 2011

wise blog reading

Last week (?) I posted a nice little post on how my kids and I were happily making pickles and ice cream in my kitchen, enjoying the day and making creative messes. 
As I stood on a chair focusing in on a pretty bowl of freshly scrubbed picklers, I focused in...snapped, took my face away from the camera and seriously laughed out loud.

Why?

Well, here's what YOU saw.....



And here's what I saw....brace yourself....











Ya....I know.


So here's the deal girls, we read these blogs and see every one's pretty homes and pretty things and sometimes it can get a little overwhelming. It can be easy, if our minds aren't guarded, to feel jealous, feel bad about our own stuff, small, insignificant, lame.


My kitchen is not normally this gross (or my kids would be in foster care for gosh sakes) but that day, it struck me...let's not let this awesome blog world of ours get us down, yo.
For the most part we only see pictures, and those pictures are almost always focused in on the pretty stuff.




Just thought you should know that I love blogging and I love sharing my loves, talents, gifts; but I never ever ever ever want to portray myself as Lil Ms. Perfect Pants.
Nobody likes Ms. Perfect Pants...that's not me.
Let's just be honest, we've all got stickers stuck to our butts and mold on our bread at one point or another right?


Comprende?
Comprende.  (roll your tongue when you say it, it just feels better.)


xo,
{alicia}




August 24, 2011

a sunroom addition


A while ago I showed you my sunroom.
I always knew we were not using this room to it's full potential. It needed a purpose.
While perusing the blog world one night, I came across Ashley Ann's pallet bed and I died.
I was dead, but then I came back to life and got me some wood pallets.
This was quite the labor of love, but it is finished and I couldn't be happier.

Prepare yourself for lots of photos of one teensy tiny room.
I couldn't help it, it was self-gratification on a memory card...I had to share.



There are wood pallets all over the place, just waiting to be something more than just plain ol' pallets.  I bought these two, but I'm sure if I would've tried harder I could've scored some freebies. These were cheap and I just didn't feel like searching.

I did 90% of this project solo.
I used a drill...lots. I figured out the nut and bolt thing. It was interesting....

I ordered a twin sized mattress and when it got here, I realized it was quite a bit smaller than the pallets. So Jarrod sawed a couple big chunks out, hence the last 10%. ;)






I had two lonely wood boxes in the basement and stacked 'em up to create a little side table for books and a lamp. I like the way it looks with the pallets.  I added an old quilt and sewed some quick pillows. The door has been in the garage for months. I was going for a really hodge-podgy look.



I had to change out the curtains because the other ones were long, so they needed to be shorties. I was not in the mood for a big curtain gig, so I just sewed very simple panels with a large casing at the top for the curtain rod and a small casing at the bottom for a dowel rod. Then I rolled them up and looped a long piece of twine around and tied it up. Simple simple simple.




I did that all by myself ;)


The two pallets are bolted together with several bolts.

It's already been used the last two nights for loooong reading sessions. I took a nap on it. Yeah for naps! I'm super pleased with how this turned out.
Speaking of naps........

bye!


xo,
{alicia}




Linking to:





August 23, 2011

it was a good one

Can I just say that y'all know how to make a girl feel good?!
I feel so blessed by your sweet words yesterday.
I had a great day.
We had a lovely dinner with people I love.
My kids showered me with gifts they chose themselves:

Jack-long purple skirt
Sophie-blue feather earrings (which she told me she got immediately after returning home from buying them)
Noah-rain boots ;)


Birthday flowers...every year my mom sends flowers. LOVE flowers.


Jarrod had them wrap them all up pretty and draw me colorful drawings. Love that.

They insisted I wear their gifts to my birthday dinner on the patio. I did except for the boots. I would've died it was so hot. And that wouldn't have made for a very good birthday.
The boots I will save for rainy fall days that are fast approaching. (i'm on the fence about fall, happy about it some days, sad the next...i'm a girl, i have every right to mixed emotions.)




I felt showered by love in every way, including your comments.
I loved what you all had to say....and i laughed out loud at many of them.
Sasha, I know it was totally inappropriate to laugh at that comment, but I know you meant it in all unseriousness.
Becky, even though you called me bossy I know you meant it in the sweetest possible way ;)
Mandy, I totally split at your explaination of turning 30 last year!

Jack discovered his FIRST looth tooth yesterday!



But there was one comment in particular that I felt may need some further explanation. Sometimes tooooo much left to the imagination is NOT a good thing. Get me?  
Ms. Robin shared a list of items she knew about me that may or may not have confused some people besides us...let me further explain.

Robin's lovely comment (my explanation in italics):
Really sweet blog...and I love the photos of the fair. Of course, I already knew all these things about you. Just saying. And I know a few more. Like...

*You're one of the best moms ever.
this is too sweet, especially coming from someone i consider a really great mama.
*I know about your secret undergarment. it is true. i've started a collection of these recently. all i can say is that self assurance lies within the tightly woven threads of spandex.
*You have really pretty teeth. i've never thought this about myself, but thanks robin. :)
*You rarely use the word damn so when you do it makes me laugh out loud. i do like a good swear once in a while. i'm no potty mouth, but sometimes i just feel like it. and sometimes it just feels good. i highly recommend it.
*You inspire me even though I am older than you. :)
*Sophie wants to be just like you which says a lot about you. this frightens me most days.
*You have a thing with Don Draper. i do. this is so true. it's a good thing he's just a fictional character. i can't help that God made such a beautiful man. what can i say? i have a thing for a man in a suit. ;)
*You have thought about getting a tattoo on your chest and maybe, just maybe start smoking. ok. so at the fair the other night, there was some....um, interesting people watching going on. i suddenly realized the thing setting me apart was a chest tat and a cig. i am still considering both these things.
*You don't like bugs. no. i hate them. loathe them.
*You don't make your own pie crust, which saddens me greatly. yes. robin will just have to get over this one. not gonna budge here.
*You won't drive a mini van. no comment.
*You are my best friend in the whole wide world. :)
*You really are more than a friend, you are like a sister. love that.
*You have made the past 6 months of my life bearable. well, the last few months have pretty much STUNK for you Sista. glad i could be there for you.

Ok. I am done now. Happy Birthday and I love you more than chocolate.  love you too...more than onion rings, that is :)

Any further questions, please direct to ROBIN!





SO...thank you! from the bottom of my heart! You all are so special to me...and I hope you know I mean that. 
Now that all this partying is over for a little bit, I've got to focus.
SCHOOL and my FALL ETSY LINE are a priority...well, behind keeping my children alive, that is. Gotta jet!



xo,
{alicia}

August 22, 2011

{29.}

Photos in this post taken at the Brown Co. Fair, in all it's greasy glory.



Today I am 29.
My kids are sleeping. I ran with my good friend.
We're off to a great start.
Now, sweet readers, you may think you know me well, but there are a few things you may not know about me. SO, today's post is meant to inform you of 29 things you need to know about me...and to invoke lots of sweet Happy Birthday comments :)



1. I'm drinking my first cuppa jo for the day, and it's always the best. If I don't have coffee everyday, I might hurt somebody.
2. We're having a steak dinner tonight and it'll be my first steak off the grill all summer.
3. I almost always have a project going on, if not 12.
4. I have a passion for list making.
5. God just opened my eyes to some things through a very strange situation. I'd never be able to spill it on here, but it was very cool that He did that nonetheless.
6. I have an associates degree in some sort of business. I honestly don't remember what...marketing? Advertising?


7. I love that no matter how old we are, His mercies are new every morning.  I need a little grace now and then, you?
8. I might enjoy fair photos more than the actual fair.
9. I set a goal to run every day this month and so far I'm 19/22. I feel pretty good about that.
10. Jarrod played a mean trick on me last night and scared me so bad I may have peed my pants. Then I laughed so hard about it I cried.
11. Jane Eyre may very well be my new favorite book.
12. Between onion rings or chocolate cake, I'd pick the onion rings.
13. I'm not super excited about my next birthday.


14. I'd love to plan a craft weekend, like Meg (@ whatever)...wouldn't that be fun!?!
15. I have more plans than I could carry out in 3 lifetimes.
16. I have a dream to live close to the beach and rent a cottage there for the summer.
17. And drink margaritas everyday.
18. Right now summer's my favorite, next month fall will be my favorite.
19. Thinking about school right now makes me panicky. I haven't planned anything.
20. I don't like being unprepared.


21. I had a wedding planning business for 2 years. My last wedding was when I was 6 months pregnant with Jack.
22. Blogging has become my #1 hobby...there's so many of you I love to meet!
23. I don't like shopping all that much. The grocery store stresses me out.


24. I've made the local news...twice. My cheeks were burning red the whole time I watched, I was so embarrassed.
25. I thrive on quiet. I love alone time.
26. My mom has taught me everything I know...pretty much. (love you mom, it seems suitable to thank you for birthing me and all that right now...thanks :))




27. I can day dream about being an empty nester and then cry because my kids look too big, all within a 30 minute time frame...is that normal??
28. I am bossy. I call it leadership skills.
29. When people asked me what I wanted for my birthday I couldn't think of a thing. I am so beyond blessed, it's not even funny. 



So there you have it!
It's a Monday (boo...) but it's my birthday (yeah!!)...
so have a super Monday, just for me!

xo,
{alicia}

PS: I finished a project I've been working on forever this weekend!! I'm taking some photos today...hopefully will share tomorrow...SO excited to show you :)

August 20, 2011

First Dates & Weekends Away

Photos in this post courtesy of Duluth, MN and all it's beauty; the Glensheen Mansion AND the fact that they just decided to have an arts fair the weekend we were in town. 


This was the second time Jarrod and I got away for a long weekend together this year. That's really good for us. Getting away with three little kids and busy lives is not easy. But I'm sure you already knew that.

Not only did he treat me to the best concert ever! but we enjoyed some scenery on the beautiful Lake Superior. (ps: does it freak anyone else out that these "Great Lakes" look like oceans...something about that doesn't sit well with me. i always think: what's out there? are there swamp monsters in there? seriously, i think i'm invoking some great topics of conversation here ;))


We drove up and down the coast of Lake Superior, poked around little antique shops, and went on a hike. 



If you would have asked me 12 years ago if I thought I would be cruising around Northern Minnesota with Jarrod Hutchinson, taking a break from our three kids and busy life I would have thought you were crazy.  But life takes crazy turns, God blesses, grace abounds and we end up in beautiful places we never thought we would've guessed we wanted.


Twelve years ago today actually, we had our very first date.
It was a pre-birthday date. It ended up being a group date with several others,
but I was a little nervous. He was older than me (all of one year, but still).
He was popular...the cool jock. 
We went to The Sixth Sense. Remember that movie?
Just a little suspense and creepy kid and the rest is history....


...we've watched approximately 3,000 movies since then,
 gone on approximately 2,000 dates, bought 1 house, and had 3 kids.




He said he loved me after like three weeks.
He told me (when we were 17 and 18) that he was going to marry me...
he wrote me a note saying it was ME he pictured being old with.


I thought he was out of his damn mind!


But in hindsight, maybe I was the crazy one.






He was right.  We are growing old together...
we laugh a lot, share the same psychotic sense of humor, love food and movies,
our kids...our life.



 Mr. Hutchinson, thank you for that first date.
And the latest one too...that was awesome.
I love you.

And dear readers, I'll leave you with one last shot of Duluth.
Don't ask me to explain it. It was a red light, I had my camera, things happen,
I saw an interesting photo op.

Do we really want to know any backstory? No. I think the answer to that is no.




mmmmmkkkk....well then.
I'm off to boss my man and make him do all sorts of things he doesn't want to do.

Have a fab Saturday!

xo,
{alicia}
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