About Me

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I love to laugh and love with my family, read, exercise, cook and sew, all the while giving thanks to God for his immeasureable love and faithfulness to me.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Mei Mei's birthday

Someone turns 3 today!  Miss Mei Mei!!
We had the family over yesterday for a little party--the big request?  Elmo cupcakes.  Done!
I don't think she got the whole idea that it was her birthday, but she was thrilled to have everyone there, none-the-less.  She definitely got into the gifts though.  That didn't take long--ha!
Highlights of the evening?  Mei Mei putting her Tonka trucks into her new purse and drilling with all her jewelry on.  Love it!
Happy birthday sweet girl!  You are our precious Mei Mei and we can't get enough of you!!  Big hugs to you on your special day.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Summer's here...must be time for strawberries!

With summer here, it is time to hit the U-pick farms.  Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries...they're all delicious, and each year, I try to make sure we go pick while we can!
LaLa came with us this time, so she and Mei Mei worked together to fill a bucket.
The Noodle and I each had our own buckets.  I have to say, she has gotten pretty good at picking berries. She knows the routine--work first and then eat (a few berries and then at the custard place down the road). We had to make sure Mei Mei learned the ropes as well--she did :)
The best reward for (literally) backbreaking work?  A cool, sweet treat.  Not to mention sticky fingers and mouths from the juice.
Summer memories!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Kitchen re-do Part I

If you've spent a little while around here, you know that 3 summers ago we bought the house I grew up in from my parents.  They moved into a condo and we jumped back into home renovation.  You can read about the mudroom renovation here, the powder room here, and the addition here.

Next up was the kitchen.

You can tell in the before that some things were pretty dated.  The wall color was a warm terracotta color but the counters and cabinets had been there for.ever.  The conversations with  my folks about moving in had been going on for a number of years and so they didn't really want to make major decisions and purchases (like counters or cabinets) when they knew we'd be moving in eventually changing things up. Everyone just made it work.
This is the view standing in one doorway, coming up from the entry.  It is a pretty standard kitchen--not too big, but definitely workable.  What is nice is that at the far end, under the window, is a breakfast bar.  We eat quite a few meals here.
This is the view standing from the living room looking in.  We did need to get some new appliances (a few that were planned and a few that were surprises.......).  You can see the dining room off to the left.

Those little swaths of gray-blue on the walls?  A peek of what was to come.
 Here's the view from the dining room with the entry on the left and the living room on the right.
When we J started working on the kitchen it was just before the holidays.  We had gotten the referral for Mei Mei but had no idea when we'd be traveling.  All that being said, we wanted to do as much as we could but without dropping a lot of coinage.  Simplest way?  Paint!
The walls got covered in Quietude by Sherwin Williams  which is also what we used in the treehouse (cannot believe I have not done a post/reveal about that!), the powder bathroom, mudroom and entry.  The cabinets got painted white and instantly the room felt brighter and more updated.  He also added some stainless behind the stove and we got a new hood.
At one time there had been some water damage from a leak over the breakfast bar so that needed to be addressed and some wall patching done.  J also changed up the lights which helped to brighten things up since the only natural light comes from the window which looks out onto our screened in porch.
Speaking of the breakfast bar.  How to re-do it?  When J's folks had built their house, his dad had bought a bowling alley off of e-bay to use as workbenches.  Yes, J's ability to "re-use" comes naturally!  I would have never thought to use it, but he had some left over and it was the right size (at the right price) so we decided to go for it.
I love it!  It took 3 men to lug that heavy, cumbersome plank in, but once it dropped into place (and stayed there) it totally changed the feel of the kitchen.  It is maple, suuuuper thick and nice and glossy.
In the next post I'll reveal the finished room with the new tile backsplash and the countertops.  

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

What's for dinner?

Nothing better than my two little sous chefs helping me prepare dinner by picking some fresh swiss chard!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Big Machines, Boat Rides and Fathers

As J and I get older, we appreciate more and more how fortunate we are to have all four of our parents in our lives.  Both sets of parents live close by, so we're able to see them frequently and the girls get to have love showered on them.  Huge blessing!!
We had Mei Mei's baptism (here) on the actual Father's Day.  Saturday we took her out on her first boating trip with Grandma and Grandpa.  She loved it!!  She was so curious and loved all the bumps and waves.
Grandpa has a bit of an addiction...for "big" toys.  Like bulldozers, excavators and such.  He just got a new toy.  A forklift.  The girls were so excited to see it and bonus...they got to ride in it!  Grandpa ate it up with a spoon :)
We spent quite a bit of time at the barn ooohing and ahhhing over all the big machines.  Mei Mei loves to spot them at various construction sites around town and the Noodle knows all the names (thank goodness because I don't have a clue!).  A typical conversation goes something like this:  "Look Mei Mei, there's a--what's that thing called Noodle?"  "An excavator Mama"  "An excavator Mei Mei!"  She proceeds then to make a machine noise while using her hand to make a scoop.  Love it!
After everyone left from the baptism on Sunday and we had cleaned up, we just chilled outside, went for a bike ride, blew bubbles and then had a light picnic dinner.  All in all, a great Father's Day weekend, celebrating all the Dads in our lives who mean so much to us.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Mei Mei's Baptism

Mei Mei was baptized this past Sunday (Father's Day) at our church.  Afterwards we had family and a few close friends come over for a light lunch.  
The church where we are attending now doesn't believe in Godparents, but rather that the entire church body is charged with helping raise, look after, care and pray for the child.  There were four other children who were baptized and one teenager who gave her life to Christ (how cool is that?!).
It was such a blessing to have (almost) everyone here with us to celebrate Mei Mei's special day.  We missed having Uncle and Aunt C here, especially since they played such an important role when the Noodle was baptized, but are looking forward to their visit over the 4th!
"Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life."--Romans 6:4