Thursday, August 30, 2012


When Isabelle got into her new school, we had to make a quick last minute vacation plan. We didn't want to go far or spend too much, so we traveled north to Lake Erie. Since I grew up on the lake, I always enjoy going back and vacationing there is nostalgic for me.  My mom had a friend with a beautiful house in Lakeside, OH, where we stayed. My sister and her kids came for a day and my parents came at night to visit and hang out.  We went to East Harbor beach, where the kids had a great time! The water level was super low and it created about half a mile of shallow water, which was perfect for our young kids. We spent all day swimming, digging for shells, making sand castles, and hanging out with cousins. 

The next day we went to Soak City at Cedar Point. The kids had a blast swimming and riding the water rides. Grace is my cautious child, so we had to drag her kicking and screaming into the Lazy River, but she LOVED it after her first go around. And Isabelle was gungho about any ride they would let her go on. I took her on the two big waterslides that she was tall enough to ride and she was wild about them. Her favorite was a tall, fast slide, you lay on a mat and go down face first. The H20 Dragster, I think. I was worried she would freak out, but she was all like, "Let's go again!" They had a blast!

 As an extra bonus, there was a litter of fox born in the neighborhood where we stayed for the week.  And they were running around like cats all weekend long. We saw them all the time. In my limited experience, I have only seen fox a couple of times, they are leary of people. But these fox would come within 10 feet of us. It was so cool to see!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A Room for A First Grader

Isabelle has decided that she hates pink. That's a bummer considering her room is all shades of pink. And let's not even talk about her clothes!  Her new favorite color is purple  blue light blue.  And NOTHING else will do.  Many days she even refuses to wear a differnt color. Again quite a bummer, considering she has to wear uniforms.  (bummer for US, that is!!)

But, we did buy her new bedding for her birthday and a bunch of sweet family members bought items to go along with it. It's blue and red and pinks, which incorporates her pink walls..which I DID NOT want to repaint!

I also found this GREAT old dresser and bureau set at a garage sale and painted it robins egg blue to match the quilt.  I painted it with a brush and then overlayed it with a bronze gloss.  I removed the old brass handles and spray painted them a dark metallic color and finished it off by covering the back inside with the great material I found at JoAnn's. I LOVE LOVE LOVE how it turned out!

I finished off the room by painting her frames and side tables the same blue, and getting some ribbon blue ribbon for the lamps and letters. I was pretty happy with the result!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

First Grade

We have had some ups and downs with schooling in our family, and poor Isabelle has had to bear with us, as our practice oldest child. She has switched schools several times, and this year she began a new year at a top rated charter school in Columbus. In fact there was a waiting list of 250 students and she miraculously got in at the last minute! So, she began the first grade, uniforms and all on August 6. Her day is LONG, as she starts at 7:45 and goes till 3:15. So far, she's doing great, even though she is exhausted at the end of the day. We are really proud of her!
 In the meantime, I have also been enjoying some one and one time with my baby (not so much a baby anymore!) Grace.  We have been running errand, taking walks, reading books, and having quiet breakfasts together. Love that girl!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Isabelle's 6th Birthday Party

I am slowly falling behind on blog world. I know. But I have been doing it for so many years, I feel like it's my digital scrapbooking and feel obligated to not let it completely die. By the way, my scrapbooking is also falling WAYYYYY behind.  My poor second childs life has been recorded with nary any creativity! *sigh* Oh well!

Isabelle's sixth birthday has come and gone. And my 30 something birthday too!  Isabelle requested a Mermaid party this year and I happily complied.  I know it's only a matter of years when my girls are not going to want parties with themes and tissue paper puff balls. Instead they are going to want trips to the mall and outings with friends, so my inner party planner is soaking every last moment of enjoyment out of these years. Yes, I enjoy it probably more than my girls. Who are mostly in it for the gifts, if I'm being honest.

We went with a blue and green theme and the highlight of the event were the end of season beach towels, that I rigged into make shift mermaid tails. A lovely favor, if I do say so myself. We also decorated water bottles and sunglasses with stick-0n bling. We had so many wonderful family and friends come from near and far, the house was FULL and Isabelle got so many great gifts. Thank you everyone for sharing in Isabelle's day!

Cupcakes by Mama. These are suppose to be mermaid tails!:)

Green and Blue was our theme

Gift bags with sunglasses and waterbottles inside.
 Isabelle's newly remodeled furniture pulling double duty as party decor!

Cupcake table.
 Mermaid Tails waiting for each little guest.

Wearing thier mermaid tails. Aren't they cute?
 Papaw and Abby
 Oma, Jack and Isabelle on her new bike!

 Waterslide, always a big hit. Thanks for the loaner, Oma!
 Sweet Jenna and Abby
Friends and Family hanging out.

Opa and Isabelle

Isabelle getting ready to blow out the candle on her cupcake.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

They're Finally Here!

Our family pictures are finally here! I am so excited and thought I'd share them with you and shamelessly plug Heart of Me Photography again.  I am a huge fan of all things creative and beautiful, and good photography is most certainly at the top of my list.  Note I said "good."  On the other hand cheap studio portraits make me cringe, no matter how cute the kids are!  I think photography is art and should take my breathe away AND make me look fabulous (thank you photoshop!) Shannon, the photographer (and my cousin), packaged our pictures in a beautiful package with a metal cd case with one of our pictures on the cover!  She also prints her pictures on a stock called linen texture that makes the photos almost look like they are canvas portraits. I had never seen that before and really loved it!  The "brag book" is amazing and she even threw in an extra gift, an iphone cover for me with the girls pictures on it! Can I tell you again how happy I am to have a photographer in the family? And if you live in Ohio, and are looking for a good photographer, look no further than Heart of Me!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Dog Days of Summer

We have been having a great summer so far! The kids are just at the age where they are a bit safer around water.  Meaning, with swimmies on, they won't drowned!  This has meant days and days at the pool already. We are all toasty brown and high on vitamin D! Loving summer!

Conrad has developed an unusual past time over the past few months, scouring Craigs list for pets.  I don't know why, but he spends much free time looking for dogs and tempting the kids into good behavior with promises of new furry friends.  Least you think his promises are in vain, and you aren't on my Facebook page...last week we got a dog!

He found a family nearby who had lost a job and was looking to "rehome" thier beautiful three year old Golden Retriever.  We went to see her with reminders to the girls that we probably wouldn't get her.  But, it was love at first sight.  She's very calm and friendly, and already very well trained.  She was inexpensive and in great health.  But, we love the well trained part best!  Her name is Kensie.  We kept her name, since she's three, but I decided her "real" full name would be Kensington, after Kensington Palace and the Queen's Year of Jubilee.  God Save the Queen!

I'm not sure who loves her more, the kids or Conrad.  Kensie gets up and walks ConradConrad gets up and walks Kensie every morning and night.  It's good excercise for both of them!   Happy to have this little addition to our familly!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend

Last weekend we went up North to my parents for Memorial Day weekend. My sister and her family came along. We celebrated my dad's birthday and Conrad and I's anniversary. We also went to my mom's friend, Doc's ranch for some amazing food and pony rides!  We got some good pictures too.

The highlight of the weekend was my cousin Shannon, who just started her own photography business, taking our family pictures. I don't have them all back, and I'm dying to see them, especially after the first couple of teasers. If you are in the Northern Ohio area and need a good photographer, you have to check out Heart of Me Photography. She's very reasonable and heads above the rest with her eye for art and her skill in photoshop! Check out the below pictures, don't you just love the firefly photo?

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Welcoming Summer 2012

I'm having a hard time believing that Isabelle is graduating from kindergarten in less than  a week! What? Where did the time go? I'm not going to lie to you, it was a rough start. What can I say, the girl has my genes, and we don't always do well with change.  Note to future Isabelle, from your mom, who's been there and done that: It get's easier, baby.  We get better with change the older we get.

Now that that's out of the way, we are looking forward to a footloose and fancy free summer. No school, no ballet, no home group.  No real committments. And my children are young so I am raging against the machine that tells me they have to be scheduled into every little activity that comes around. I can see the benefits for some kids at some point.  But we are just not there yet.  I want them to be able to run and play and be care free for a bit longer.  Thier daytimer days will come soon enough!

So, in order to maximize the summer fun, I've put together another list of fun things for us to do this summer. MOST of them are free, and we probably won't hit all of them, but making a list, forces me to look up the info, schedule it in and that way, if we are free and feelin' it, we can make a fun outing out of it. 

  • Go to the pool
  • Do  sprinkler Drive Thru Bike Wash
  • Bonfire/Marshmellow Roast
  • Weekend at Lake Erie/Mini Staycation
  • Go Fishing
  • Go to Outdoor Movie
  • Go to Drive In
  • Watch Fireworks
  • Creekside Paddle Boasts
  • Make Sandcastle
  • Go to Big Splash
  • Go to Farmers Market
  • Fountains at Easton
  • Go to  Parade
  • Ride Carosel at Columbus Commons
  • Take kids to eat at Food Truck
  • Find an ice cream truck
  • Pick strawberries/blackberries/raspberries
  • Go to Columbus Metro Parks Activity
  • Go to kids activity at Homestead Park
  • Paint with Pudding
  • Do Library Reading Club
  • Go on a family picnic
  • Go to Cosi
  • Go to Zoo
  • Catch fireflies to use at nightlights
  • Ohio Craft Museum
  • Columbus Latin Festival
  • Arts in the Alley
  • Star Gazing
  • Go caving in Hocking Hills - another staycation
  • Go to the Works Children's Museum
  • Go o the Wilds
  • Easton Lego store free activity morning
  • Surla Table children's cooking class
  • Free movie morning at local cinema
  • Children's Theatre-Sleeping Beauty
  • Mini Golf
  • Play in fountains at Scioto Mile many weeks do we have in summer? What did I say about being non schedul-y this summer?  Well, I guess I also want to create memories and keep the crazy to a the flip side to that coin is just say no to boredom, television watching, and fighting sisters!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Easter Pintrest

Thank you Pintrest again for great Easter ideas.  We made these treats for Grace and Isabelle's Easter Parties at Daycare.  The girls helped me and they were a huge hit!

I also wanted a spring-y mantel and wah-la.  A little yarn and felt and a quick trip to the thrift store later.  I love it!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Easter Sunday

Does two years in a row a tradition make? Well, if so, we officially have ourselves a tradition! The Michael's have hosted Easter Sunday dinner two years in a row. It's quite a feat considering our family lives two hours plus away from us. We had a great Easter Weekend. Besides all of the new dresses, we had a good visit from the Easter Bunny. She He led the girls through a scavanger hunt to find thier Easter Baskets. I think a good time was had by all!
The girls woke up to jelly beans leading to thier first clue (and new umbrellas!)
Thier second clue led them to the fruit basket in the kitchen and some Grow your own strawberry kits.
The third clue was in the dryer and had new purses!
Finally! hidden in the utility closet!