Friday, July 15, 2011

Bridal Shower and Birthday Party

Catching up with last weekend:

I hosted a bridal shower for my future sister-in-law.

Ready for guests!
Pretty cupcakes provided by the MOH

Enjoying lunch

The table is set!


Opening gifts

The creative and cool towel cake by Aunt Cathy

A special cookbook just for two :)

Reading the "Coleslaw Sandwich" entry

She has a future on Price is Right :)

Breaking a ribbon - I tied it tight enough!
The bridal shower was a lot of work, but well worth the fun.  It went very well and everyone seemed to have a good time.  My brother and his future wife probably said thank you no fewer than 10 times - they were VERY appreciative :)

One of the things I value most is being close to family.  Being able to host a party like this was just one of the many wonderful family moments that happen because we're here.  We live in a tiny house, but I stay home and we're surrounded by family.  We might be poor in worldly goods, but we're rich in family.

Speaking of family - we had family over to celebrate Little Bean's 6th birthday.

Don't mind my squinting

The cake

Excited to blow out candles!
This week has also been busy with hubby going back to work.  For those of you who have been reading, you already know, but he was laid off April 28th.  After a stress-filled, prayer-filled couple months, he was offered a temp-to-hire position in the same line of work in our area - so, no move and hopefully a step up in the career path should he be hired at the end of the 6 months.

He's liking his job, a little stressed out worrying about how everything will shake out and getting up to speed, but he likes it.

Cocoa chilling in his deck-spot

The flowergirl dress is here!
We're getting closer to my brother's wedding day and the flowergirl dresses have arrived.  LB tried hers on and it's a good fit, so that's one more thing down.

This week we also received the sad news that a close family friend passed away unexpectedly.  Please keep the family in your prayers, she leaves behind her husband of 30 years and two adult children.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Home Repairs - Bathroom Edition

I survived the dentist's office....surface cavity that didn't even require anesthetic.  If you didn't know, there's a huge difference between dentists.  My dentist is one of the best....having shortly visited one of the worst during an insurance debacle, I fully appreciate my dentist.

One of the benefits of worrying about my dentist appointment was the energy I channeled into my bathroom.  To relieve my anxiety over my appointment with the drill, I started working on my bathroom.  Having painted three of the four walls previously, I started painting the fourth wall. 

The bug to put the bathroom back together started with my husband fixing the caulk in the tub.

We'd been having problems with mildew on the caulk, so my dear, patient husband spent the better part of an afternoon scraping the old caulk off and putting on new caulk. 

The consequence of the new caulk we didn't think of until later was that it would be a full day before we could shower again......thinking we all would've taken a quick shower before the caulk if we'd thought ahead :)  Thirty-six hours later, we had a mildew-free shower that we were all able to use!

As I said, once the tub was caulked and I had empty hands I needed to fill with industry to take my mind off impending drills.....I started in on finishing the painting of the walls.  The reason the fourth wall hadn't been painted with the other three was that a cabinet had to be taken down in order to paint that wall.

Once the cabinet was taken off for the time being to paint, I got the wall done.  Once the wall was done and the cabinet was out of the way, I started looking at the floor that needed to be redone....since the legs of the cabinet were out of the way, my hubby and I stopped by a flooring sale at the local home improvement store :)

I started by laying out the tiles to get a handle on the layout. 

 The worst part of the job (besides cutting the tiles around the toilet - yikes!) was ripping up the old vinyl.  I put the old vinyl down 5 years ago when we moved in.  I put it down over the vinyl that was already there, so I didn't want to put a third layer down over it.  This meant a very tedious start to the project!

The first few tiles were easy-peasy :)  Whole tiles, on the grid and away I went.  

 Once I got the tiles cut and laid that were NOT easy-peasy, I was able to grout and caulk to get a water tight seal........Little Bean is still a bit of a splasher when she takes a bath, so it was doubly important :)

With the floor laid and the grout and caulk set, my hubby got the white cabinet back up (top right) and the bathroom is set! 

It looks great!  It was hard work and I felt like I had a real understanding of the phrase, "worked my fingers to the bone" since they hurt down to the bone after ripping up the old vinyl and laying down the new.  The bathroom looks awesome, if I do say so myself.  Totally worth the sore fingers :) 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Canning and Crockpotting

It's summer, and that means it's time to heat up the kitchen with boiling pots of sauces.  I learned to can my own jams and spaghetti sauce, thanks to my sister-in-laws mom. 

This summer, I've gotten blueberry juice and strawberry syrup canned so far. 

After washing the blueberries, I added just enough water to cover

Cooking ensued.....
After the blueberries got bubbling and the blueberries started to break down, I added a little sugar and ran them through the blender to puree.  Once the blueberries were ready, I put them into my sterilized canning jars and then submersed them in boiling water to kill off bacteria that may have survived the boiling blueberry juice and sterilized jars :)  It also helps to seal the jars. 

I forgot to take a picture of the blueberry jars while they were on the table, but I did take a picture of the strawberry syrup (added more sugar than the blueberry juice to get it syrupy).

Cute little jars :)
I also tried my hand at crockpot yogurt.  I found a recipe at Girl's Guide to Butter

It really was easy...although it took way longer than I thought it would for the milk to cool back down, so I wasn't ready for bed until later than I planned, since I had to add the culture and wrap the crockpot to cool slowly.
What it looked like in the morning

Jarred and ready for the fridge!
Now off to get my tooth drilled and then get ready for a bridal shower I'm throwing this weekend.  Very much dreading getting my cavity fixed.....having only had 1 in my 30 years, I used to like going to the dentist....not so much today.  If you don't hear back from me it didn't go well :0 

My husband starts his new job on Monday, so we're looking forward to that - especially since we're going out for a celebratory dinner that night :)

Monday, July 4, 2011

Little Bean Turns 6!

It's official....sooner rather than  later I'm going to have to stop calling LB my "baby".  I can't believe how fast time has gone!

Six years ago I was negotiating the nuances of a brand new baby......we're now navigating the nuances of a brand new puppy.  Although we would've preferred about three more babies by now, the puppy was under our control :)

Still working on more babies....more on hormones, new workouts and healthy eating in another on to pictures of my sweet girl!

Playing with new toys

Eating dessert!

Check out my new bed tent!

Sitting in her new chair with her new puppy


Relaxing after dessert

Cocoa with his "stuffie"

Apparently erasers are now the rage as toys

Presents with a giftcard from Great-Grandma

Presents from mom and dad (us)

Is that a spider-pig on your card?

Blowing out candles from the birthday cheesecake

Here puppy, puppy!

Opening the bed tent

A new electric toothbrush :)

Happy with all her presents!

Cocoa on the run