October 31, 2010

Wait a Second...


...you mean they give this stuff out for free?!


October 30, 2010

Happy 26 Months, Noah!

I'm a few days late on this post, but I wanted to make sure I sat down and wrote it, because this past month has been full of changes and growth.

Noah, you turned 26 months October 27th! Here are some of the things you have been up to lately:

1. You are still in a size 5 diaper. No changes there.

2. You are wearing size 2T {3T in pj's} in clothing and a size 7-8 shoes.

3. Your favorite shows right now are Toy Story, Veggie Tales, and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Your Daddy and I still can't believe how much you love Willy Wonka. Maybe it is because of all the candy in the movie-- you looooove candy.

4. You love acorns, leaves, sticks, and rocks. And you love getting your hands dirty. You are 100% boy.


5. In your speech you have recently changed from baby babble to a basic form of Chinese {as your Daddy always says}. In other words, you are really starting to experiment with new sounds as you talk. You are also really starting to mimic us more. Your verbal words consist of: Momma, Dadda, Baby, Bowl, Apple, Papa, Nana, Mimi {just learned that one last night!}, Bubba, Fool {which sounds like pool when you say it, and yes, your Daddy taught you that one}, Four, Ball, Shoe... you are saying new words everyday! And signs, goodness, I've completely lost track you are signing so many. We are sooo proud of you mister.

6. You still love wrestling with Daddy.

7. You are still a really good car-rider, well, except when the sun gets in your eyes. Oh my gosh you get soooo mad and cry the entire time it's in your eyes. Maybe it's time for some sunglasses.

8. You are still going to Mother's Day Out on Monday and Wednesday every week and have been enjoying it. You no longer cry when I drop you off. You are starting to recognize your surroundings, teachers, and friends. I am so happy to see you enjoying yourself there. It is such a blessing, and I can see you are learning so much.

9. You have really started to take an interest in Einstein lately. You give him more hugs, you think it is so funny when he gags himself, and you love to watch him run around the house-- it makes you laugh every time. I love watching the both of you interact. It is so cute!


10. But you aren't always sweet to Einstein. You tend to take your frustration out on him when you're mad. Basically you try to tackle him or grab his face. Poor ol' Eins!

11. You are so good about brushing your teeth every evening. And now you even go to the trashcan and spit out the toothpaste in your mouth just like we've practiced. Maybe we can do it twice a day now! :)

12. You go to bed around 7:30- 8:00 pm, and lately, you've been waking up anywhere between 7:00-8:00 am.

13. You love your step stool that Mommy bought you about a month ago. You keep it in the kitchen so you can stand on it and see what is going on... or so you can reach for something you want and otherwise would not be able to reach.

14. You are still a very, very organized {OCD?} little boy. The other night before you could go to sleep you had to organize {from smallest to biggest} three jars of Vaseline on the table in your room. Once you did that, you hopped in bed and went straight to sleep. Funny little guy.


15. You have learned to whisper and it is seriously the. cutest. thing. ever! I always, always want to remember those whispers.

16. You definitely have a sweet tooth-- you love it all.

17. Tomorrow will be your very first time to go Trick-or-Treating. I'm anxious to see how you will like it. And goodness, you look absolutely adorable in your costume!

Your Mommy and Daddy love you so much and are so very, very proud of you. You are our greatest joy!

Happy 26 months sweet boy!


October 29, 2010

Mommy & Me

Most of the time I'm behind the camera taking pictures, so when
somebody offered to take Noah's and my picture at the Fall Festival
the other day, I was thrilled and quickly handed my camera over.


I love this picture of us.

It's so easy to get caught up in capturing the moment that I
end up not being in any of the pictures. And to be completely
honest, 99% of the time I would prefer to be behind the camera
than in front of it.

But someday when Noah looks back at pictures of the two of us,
he isn't going to care if I wasn't at my target weight or
if my hair was in desperate need of a trim.

Nope, he'll see himself and his Mommy.
He'll see memories we made together.

I realized this when I saw the picture
of us together. So, I am going to make more of an
effort to get behind the camera with Mr. Noah.

Hope you are having a wonderful weekend! We sure are.
It has been so nice having my mother here with us.


p.s. Today I was sooo excited to see Sarah, from Life {Sweet} Life, used
the Philippians 4:8 print I created the other evening in her guest room.
It looks amazing! I loved how she displayed it. She chose the perfect
frame for the print. And the room she decorated is beyond amazing!
She has such an eye for design. So head on over there and check it out!

October 28, 2010

Mimi & Toy Story

My mom is in town for a couple days this weekend;
it has been so nice spending time with her. Of course,
when she came up to our apartment, she had a
bag full of Toy Story gifts for Noah.

He loves his new Woody & Buzz throw pillow his Mimi
made him for the living room floor. Isn't he sweet?!


Snuggle time with Mimi.


She also got him a pair of Woody and Buzz pj's.
I've never seen him so interested in clothing before.. he just held
it up in front of him and stared for the longest time. It was so cute!

Thank you Mimi for coming to see us this weekend
and for all of the Toy Story fun.


October 27, 2010

How to Change your Blog Background

Are you ready for the simplest blog tutorial ever? I'm not even joking. You better love me for this because I am sharing with you one of my deepest, darkest secrets. :) Actually, I gotta give my hubby credit for this tutorial because he is the one who taught me how to do it. Do you ever wonder why I'm constantly changing the background on my blog? Well, I might have a little blog OCD, but changing the background is so easy I can't help it.

I don't know about you, but I quickly got tired of all those free background websites {like The Cutest Blog on the Block, Hot Bliggity Blog, etc.}. Those places are great to start out with when you are new to blogging, but after a while, those backgrounds are just blah. And there is nothing more annoying than having "The Cutest Blog on the Block" hanging at the top left corner of your blog. Does that bother anyone else? Or is it just me and my picky self?

So, do you want to know my secrets to finding great backgrounds? Sure you do.

Step One: I search in Google "free digital scrapbooking kits" and then click the tab "images" so I can see lots and lots of kits all at once. There are a lot of digital scrapbooking sites out on the web that provide background freebies for personal use. There are also scrapbooking kits you can purchase as well, and most cost only a few bucks. I usually stick with the freebies. Anyway, just look around at different kits, and once you find a couple you like, follow the simple instructions for downloading it {usually just a click of a button}, and you'll have some new backgrounds on your desktop to try out.

Step Two: Locate on your computer where you saved your background {I always save on the desktop, so it is easy to find}.

Step Three: Open up your Photobucket or Flickr account and upload the background image from your desktop {or wherever you saved it}. The arrow below is pointing to the background I want to use, so I click it, and then it will upload to Photobucket.


Step Four: Once your background image uploads, you will see the box below to the left of your screen. Copy the Direct Link.

Step Five: Seriously, we are almost done. Can you believe it? Go to Blogger and click the "Design" tab. Under the Design tab you will see three options: Page Elements, Edit HTML, and Template Designer. Click Edit HTML. As a word of warning, any time you are going to be editing the HTML code, you want to back it up first! I always copy it and send it to myself in an email so if I mess up I can get my blog back to the way it was before I started messing with it. So do that right now before we move on.

Step Six: Okay, now that we have that saved, we can work in the Edit HTML tab. Click the tab and you will see something like this:


Here is a little trick that will help you find exactly what you are looking for without having to scroll through the whole code. Use the find function: click Ctrl + F, and it will bring up a search box. In the search box, put in these words: "background:url" {without the quotes}, and then click enter. Scroll down the code, and it should look like this:


This area of the code is where we will be working. Promise, this is the very last part.

Step Seven: Okay, now we are ready to paste the Direct Link we copied from your Photobucket or Flickr account. Remember? Right next to the background:url, you will see a set of parentheses. Delete whatever is in them, and paste your Direct Link. Note: Make sure you keep the parentheses. Do not delete them.

Step Eight: Before you save your new background, you can click the Preview button. You can view your blog with your new background and if you like it, then click Save Template. And you're done!

I promise you, after you do one, you will love doing it this way. And you will get quick at it too. It usually takes me just a few minutes to change out a background. There are so many wonderful backgrounds you can choose and aren't as limited as you would be if you were using one of the free background sites.

As always, let me know if you have any questions or if you get stuck somewhere along the tutorial. Happy to help out! Have fun!!


October 26, 2010

diy baby mobile

Definitely a do-it-yourself baby mobile I want
to keep in mind in case we have a little girl someday.

I'm smitten.


Is this not the prettiest mobile you've ever seen?
I recently saw it on Spearmint Baby
and just had to share it with you.

What a cute, cute idea to match your nursery decor.
The color combination possibilities are endless!

Sadly, there wasn't a tutorial posted for this mobile,
but I don't think it would be hard to copy the idea, do you?

And just to make things clear, no,
this post does not mean anything. :)


p.s. I had a rough night last night, but I have been
feeling much better today. Thank you so much for
your sweet words and prayers. They mean so much.
I have a dentist appointment tomorrow, so hopefully
I'll walk out of there feeling like a new woman!

October 25, 2010

Dwell on These Things


I've been a little absent from the blog lately.
My allergies have been terrible this month.
And now, to make things worse, I have a toothache.

Both of these annoyances
have left me with zero energy.

I'm in pain.
My house is a wreck.
I haven't cooked.
I just want to sleep.

I'm praying for relief
trying to remember to
dwell on these things regardless
of my situation right now.

I created this printable tonight to help
remind me of Philippians 4:8.
{I'm going to print one and put it on our fridge.}

If you would like to print one off
too, feel free to download it.

I made two different sizes:
Download a 5x7 printable here
Download a 8x10 printable here

Update: click here to see an example of the print used!
I'm so excited. It looks great! Thanks Sarah for posting it
for all of us to see.

Goodnight all.

p.s. Background paper found here.

Linking up at:

October 22, 2010

Bob & Larry

Noah hit the jackpot with Bob and Larry in Lifeway
the other day. The kids section was full of Veggie Tales,
so you can imagine how excited he was.

Of course, it wasn't long before Noah got
busy organizing his stash of Bob & Larry's.


And then we had to go.


Having to leave his nicely organized characters
behind was not what he had in mind.

And he made sure we knew that too.


October 20, 2010


October is coming to a close... can you believe it?
I mean, we haven't even visited the Pumpkin Patch yet!
{But we are this Friday, yay!}

Anyway, I'm still not over this allergy stuff
and it's killing me, Smalls. I'm serious, I cough
so hard it makes my head hurt.
And the congestion, ugh. I'm so over this.

I haven't even felt like blogging...
that's how bad I've felt.

Okay, enough of my pity party.

So, last night I was feeling all crafty & creative
in Photoshop, and I made something for you!

Not sure where the energy came from, but I had so much
fun coming up with these Halloween printables.


Download "Fresh Spider Cider" here


Download "Batty Over Halloween" here


Download "Trick or Treat" here


Download "Happy Candy Day" here
{Be patient with this one.}


Download "BOO" here

Aren't they fun?!

I just wish I would have thought to make
them a month ago! But hey, there is still time left.

The printables are already sized to 5X7, so all
you have to do is download them and print them off
at your local Walgreens {or photo store of your choice}!

Have fun!


p.s. Backgrounds papers found here, here, & here.

Linking up:

October 18, 2010

Home Ec Project #4


This post is going to be short and sweet
because I. feel. like. crap. Not sure what blew in
today, but my allergies have been horrrrible!

I present to you
Home Ec Project #4: Reusable Grocery Tote Bag

Isn't it lovely?
I added a pretty little ruffle
to give it an extra girly touch. :)

Fun project!
I'll definitely be making more!

p.s. I apologize for not having "This Week's Recipes"
up yet. I have a bunch of excuses, but I won't bore you
with them. I'll try to get some recipes up tomorrow.

Linked up at:

October 17, 2010

Excuse the Mess...

If you haven't noticed by now {and I'm sure you have}, I don't stick with a layout for long. I get bored with them. I am in need of a change {a big one!}, so over the next month or two you will be seeing lots of changes. I have this idea in my head of what I want our blog to look like, but I can't seem to figure out how I'm going to do it. Looks like I might need to bribe my hubby to help me out. So, I apologize in advance for all the "I can't make up my mind!" mess on our blog. :) And the header is blah, I know, but it will have to do for now {or at least tonight..}.


Thanks for putting up with me and my crazy self!
Have a wonderful day!


October 16, 2010

Vintage Rotary Phones

I love these vintage phones from Anthropologie! Aren't they fun?! These restored telephones from the 50's and 60's have been given a new paint job with bright retro colors and are selling on Anthropologie for only $198.00. Ha. Not too bad for vintage, right? My favorite is the yellow. I loooove it!


Which one would you snatch up if you had an extra $200 lying around?


October 15, 2010


Watching Noah's face light up
when he saw the lollipop Daddy
brought home for him was...


... a fueling moment for me today.

Actually our day was full of them,
I just had to open my eyes to see them.

Thank you for all of your prayers
and encouraging words. How uplifting
they were to me today.

And, please, if you haven't read
"Fueling Moments," I encourage you to take
some time out of your day today and read it.
It has given me a whole new perspective and was
exactly what I needed to read. It is very good!

I promise, you will be encouraged by it too.

Happy Saturday!


October 14, 2010

Being a Mommy is Hard

I'm tired. Really tired.

This past week has been a tough one. Toddlerhood has proven to be quite challenging and exhausting. We have definitely, without a doubt, hit the terrible twos, and I am learning how difficult it is being a parent. I've been impatient and raised my voice more than I'd like to admit. I'm learning how important it is to be consistent in discipline, but I struggle with it everyday. I find myself dwelling over these things and not stopping to pray about them. Raising a child is a huge responsibility. I am responsible to teach him right from wrong and to be a good example for him to follow. Responsible to show Noah love, patience, and kindness. Responsible to guide and train him in way he should go. So often I fail at these things and feel inadequate as a mother. I'm learning being a mother is hard work and requires a whole lot of patience. But being a mother is also one of the greatest blessings in life. As hard as it has been lately, I thank God for these hardships and lessons. He is teaching me patience. Oh, is he teaching me patience.

Tomorrow is a new day.

The post "Fueling Moments" {<--- click link to read} by Kelle Hampton of Enjoying the Small Things has so resonated with me this evening. Some days it seems hard to find the fuel. But truly, those "filler" days are full of fuel-- we just have to challenge ourselves to search a little harder for it.

Getting some rest tonight; tomorrow I am gonna find me some fuel.


p.s. Is anyone else having trouble getting their links to change colors?

October 12, 2010

Boys will be Boys

Recently Noah has really taken an interest
in picking stuff up off of the ground.

Dirt... leaves... rocks...


sticks... acorns..
cigarette butts {yuck!}...


You get the idea... everything!


And when I say everything, I mean everything.

Guess what Noah loves to pick up?

Dog poop. Nasty, filthy, disgusting dog poop.
And he always manages to find the thick ones too.

What is it about poop that little boys find so fascinating?
I guess I will never know.

I am learning everyday boys will be boys.
And I wouldn't have it any other way.
I love my dirty, smelly little boy.


October 11, 2010

Playing Catch Up

I'm playing major catch up this week... I'm waaaay behind.
I have an ongoing list of blogs I still haven't written from Summer.
One of these days I'll catch up. Maybe.

Tonight I've been sorting through & editing pictures from our family
trip to Branson, Missouri this summer, and it's taking me for-ev-er! So, I
thought I'd give you a little sneak peak of one of my favorites so far:


Melt. My. Heart.
That has got to be the sweetest smile ever!


October 10, 2010




Susan & Cabell decided to give away
two Hidden Cupcakes instead of one!

Aren't they sweet!?

Congrats to Melanie & Marci! You were
the two Random.org selected winners.

Thank you to each and every one of you
who participated in this fun giveaway!

Want to start your own family tradition
with the adorable Hidden Cupcake?
Need a fun, unique gift?
Click here to purchase one.

Thank you Susan & Cabell for your
generosity and for such a fun giveaway!


"Uh Oh"

We have had the sick bug visit our house this weekend.
My poor little Noah has dealt with a snotty nose,
fever, and pretty much all the yuck that goes with it.

Noah & I have laid low the past couple of days,
and I am hoping that with rest, Tylenol, and a lot
of snuggles he will be over all of this very soon.

I just had to share a picture I took of Noah today.
Despite how bad he has felt lately, he was still running
all over the place and being such a funny little guy.

I heard Noah in the kitchen saying, "uh oh.. uh oh.."
so I thought I'd better go check on him and see what all
this "uh oh-ing" was about. I walk in the kitchen and saw this:


He crawled up on the window seal and couldn't get down. Haha
Thanks for the laughs you little stinker.


October 09, 2010

How to Create a Photo Collage

I'm drawing a blank tonight. Go figure. So, I thought I would write out a tutorial for you all. Sound good?

Tonight I am going to show you how to create a photo collage! And you will be happy to know, it's a very easy thing to do!

Have you heard of Picasa? I love this program {almost as much as I love Photoshop}. It's a great program that manages your collection of digital pictures, and it can also do some very simple editing.
I use Photoshop for most of my editing, but when it comes to creating photo collages, I prefer Picasa. I honestly think Picasa does just as good of a job creating simple collages as Photoshop. But really, the main reason I love using Picasa to create my collages is because it does all the work for me. :) I'm lazy like that.

So, let's get downloading and start playing in Picasa to create some photo collages!

Click here to download Picasa. And in case you are wondering, it is free!

Now that you have downloaded Picasa, all of your pictures on your computer should automatically load into it. Here is the getting started guide in case you have any questions about Picasa.

Once you are in Picasa, on the very left side of the window, you will see a list of folders. You can use these folders to organize your pictures by date or name. The folder I'm showing you below is labeled "Monster Cuppycakes." I am going to choose three pictures of Noah eating his cupcakes for my collage. You can use however many pictures you want.


First, click on a picture. After you do that, the first picture will be highlighted. Then you will hit the CTRL button on your keyboard while you click the remaining pictures.

Note: When you hit the CTRL button, don't let go of it until you finish clicking all the pictures you want to use for the collage.

Once you finish clicking all the pictures you want to use for your collage, they will all be highlighted like mine are below. You can then release the CTRL button.


Now that my pictures {and yours!} are highlighted, we are ready to make a collage.

Above all of the pictures, you will see the folder name. Like I mentioned before, my folder name is called, "Monster Cuppycakes." You will see a bunch of buttons under the title of the folder, click the second button {right next to the green arrow}.


This is the "Create Photo Collage" button.

Once you click that button, it will automatically put your pictures into a collage like mine below.


On the left side of your photo collage, there is a "Settings" box. There are many options to choose from in this little box. This allows you to customize your photo collage. Play around with all of the settings. That's the fun part!


Also, under the photo collage, there is a button you can push called, "Shuffle Pictures." It randomly creates different collage layouts with your pictures, and you can click it over and over again until you like how your collage looks.

Removing and Adding Pictures to your Collage:
If you have a picture in your collage that you decide you don't want anymore, just click the picture {this will highlight it} and push the "Remove" button located above the collage.

If you want to add more pictures to your collage, click the tab "Clips" in the Settings Box. Then you can click "Get more..." and it will take you to the folders where you can pick different pictures.

Once you are done playing with the settings and you are happy with your collage, then click the button "Create Collage" which is located in the Settings Box.

After Picasa has created the collage, it automatically exports it into an image. On your computer, locate your "Pictures" folder, and find the folder labeled "Picasa." Then there should be a folder labeled "Collages." Click that folder and you should be able to find your collage there.

Then you can upload the collage to either Photobucket or Flickr {whichever you prefer}. You may need to resize your collage before you put it into your blog post. This tutorial will help you learn how to resize images if you don't know how.

Here is my finished collage!


If you have any questions, don't hesitate to leave me a comment below or send me an email. I'm happy to help!

Have fun creating your collages! I can't wait to see them.


p.s. The Hidden Cupcake Giveaway is now closed! A winner will randomly be selected and announced sometime Monday {October 11th}. Thanks to all who entered and good luck! Oh, and there is a new menu up for this week. :)