May 31, 2011

a bit kitschy

But I like it. (I had a boss who used the words "kitschy" and "tchotchkes" all the time... usually to describe homeowner's homes who wanted to be on TV. Loooots of tchotchke homes out there people. As much as I am not a tchotchke person, thinking about it makes me smile a little because it reminds me of her.) Anyway, tada: the new kitchen curtains!

I still need to find some hooks or tie backs for the sides of the window, but otherwise, it's great. So airy and light, with a little personality. They look fun from the outside, too.

My mom came over a few weeks ago, and we cranked these out in under two hours... I did the pinning and ironing, and she did the sewing. So nice. A fun, easy project that gives me false hope that I can do much more complicated projects... ;)

And Raul does like the fabric...whew. He was glad to see those blinds come down. Hasta lasagna, don't get any on ya.



hints of summer

We spent the weekend outdoors and semi-camping, going up to Guanella Pass for a day with Livi and Dex. It was beautiful! And it was Liv's first time in the mountains... she loved it. Especially since Rachel, Julie's little girl, was there to greet her as soon as her little feet hit the ground. She led Liv around by the hand most of the day, and helped her adjust. I brought three sets of clothes "just in case," and didn't have to change her once--I thought she'd get a lot dirtier! I guess I should just be thankful it wasn't muddy.

And how cute are these little chairs? Yup, Liv was livin' it up.

It's supposed to reach into the 90s this week (yikes), and the onset of heat has been a welcome change... mostly because my plants aren't cowering in fear of hail or snow anymore, but are actually thriving.

 Lavender and Rosemary

 Vinca, around our tree in front (I love the dual shades of purple!)

 Mini-irises near the front door

 These are beautiful, but at first I found them kind of odd... I didn't realize they'd be so "mini!" They remind me of sparklers, or firecrakers.

My biggest victory yet this year in the garden: I DIDN'T KILL MY IRISES! I was so worried I'd ruined them when I transplanted them, but one has bloomed, and there are more blooms growing... they should be full &  lovely next summer once they've completely acclimated. Horray hurrah!

Prism Sunshine petunias, my favorite windowbox flower :)

And some cheerful daisies, by the front gate. I threw seeds out two years ago in the fall and have been happy to see them thrive since.

In other plant news, I'm waiting to see if my tomatoes survived the wind and cold of last week; I have three pepper plants I just put out yesterday, and I have some daylily's and snapdragons working their way to bloom. I can't wait. I'm excited to spend lots of time outside this year (as much as baby #2 will tolerate!) and show Liv how to pull weeds and water plants. Good times.

May 18, 2011

gray day.

This has been the shade of gray we've had lately:

So odd for Colorado. Almost every day has been like this. I'm loving the rain, but also have realized how much I love the sun! Dex was looking forward to a trip to the dog park today, but we'll save it for another day... Today is more of a PJ/cleaning/stay indoors sort of day.  And there are a lot of projects/areas to clean that I've been ignoring, so I guess today is as good a time as any to just do it.

I hop around when I clean. Do you do that, or is it just me? It's really hard for me to stay in one spot until it's completely finished...I'll load some dishes, wipe the counter, remember I have a load of laundry to do, then jump upstairs to make the bed... then back downstairs to fold blankets in the living room and put them in their basket. It makes absolutely no sense, but it's how I've always been.  Today has been no different! I cleaned up the shelves above the washer and dryer, gathered up all the trash, cleaned the kitchen, and went downstairs to clean up some craft stuff. I keep thinking that once everything actually has a place, and I'm not in "survivor" mode, skipping around will slowly fade away and things will be more manageable...

Another technique of mine is to find something incredibly interesting that distracts me from cleaning--sometimes it's a magazine, or a card from someone that was really special, or whatever. This time, it was a stack of papers from my old job.
I didn't realize I missed work until these cards fluttered out of the stack--cards from a Bible study I went through years ago. There are five cards, and each card has a title and day of the week on the top, like this:

Monday: Attitude
Tuesday: Energy
Wednesday: Ethics
Thursday: Advice
Friday: Influence

There are verses beneath each topic to encourage you throughout your week, and I jotted down some notes beside them too, such as ""No one is smarter than the one who knows she has a lot to learn!" on the "Advice" card. Under "Ethics," I wrote, "Be faithful to your job." 

These cards meant so much to me at work! I learned so much at my company, and so appreciate all of the teams I worked with... But there were definitely days when I would feel discouraged, or just tangled in gobs of deadlines, and needed some encouragement... and what better words to hear than scripture? If these cards weren't in my drawer, they were propped up on my keyboard until whatever funk I was in passed. And it would, because God is awesome like that.

I miss aspects of that job. But I'm enjoying this new chapter with little Liv, and how special it's been. For all of the mourning that has come with change, I know that in good time I'll have another drawer and another keyboard for these cards to fit in (hopefully as I'm freelancing, right? ;). For now, the "Energy" card is going on my fridge. How timely.

"Go to the ant, you slacker! Observe its ways and become wise. Without leader, administrator, or ruler, it prepares its provisions in summer; it gathers its food during harvest." Proverbs 6:6-8

An ant would certainly have a clean basement by now... I love how this verse totally calls you out with "slacker!" It makes me chuckle inwardly every time I read it.

PS. My curtains are done and cheering up our kitchen! Pictures soon--when the sun comes out...

May 16, 2011

playing in the sunshine.

Took the bean outside to play while I planned on planting in our raised beds a couple of weeks ago--it's so nice that she's more self-sufficient these days and able to play on her own! Although, not surprisingly, we both ended up playing, and planting pretty much waited until naptime. I can already tell we're going to have lots of fun outside this summer.

If sunny playtime pictures didn't cheer you, here's a video of Liv laughing--almost every day, it seems something very specific tickles her funnybone and she has this hearty guffaw that is hysterical. Warms my heart. Shouldn't kids laugh this hard daily?? I love that Raul is laughing so hard he can't hold the camera straight.