Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Halloween has hit the Homestead!

My FAVORITE time of year has arrived! & boy my house shows it! I still have more to put out but I like to pace myself....as I find Halloween a joyous time!

I know most people say that about Christmas & don't get me wrong, I LOVE Christmas too BUT Halloween was a time of celebration for my family.....it was my Grandma's birthday!! She has left us all behind & moved on to better places but the memories of celebrating her birthday & crisp air & sweet candy all while wearing costumes...well those memories just make me really happy! So every year I revel in putting out my Halloween goodies & give a little wink to my Grandma!

Here are some of my most precious Halloween Items on the mantle. The witch reminds me of my grandma & the tall cat to the right was made by my mother as well as the pumpkin in the middle! Love what she makes!

you can check out her blog here


I just love having my spooky little pumpkins lighting up the night! & in true Halloween fashion, they get dressed up too!

This is a favorite in our house. It is an awesome sign that my mother created & let me just say, my 2 boys try to one up each other on dibs for this one when they grow up & move out!

Here is our spooky skeleton chalkboard (yes, my Mom was at it again) & he is larger than life on our front porch but I love how he looks "sitting" out there!

& here lies Marcus the carcass......every year I put him out & he just makes me smile. On Halloween night all the little trick or treater's marvel over him! of course I also put out the grim Reaper & they are kind of scared of him (he will be in an upcoming post...remember I like to pace myself) Oh & don't you just love my little grave yard...

& this little gem is a project I did a few years ago & I LOVE putting it out every Halloween......I made this flag out of gauze & tulle. I DO NOT SEW so I made this with that iron on hem stuff that you can find just about everywhere. This project couldn't be more simple & have such a wonderful effect! All It takes is an iron & some scissor skills!

Here is a night time shot.......I just love him! he just looks like he is saying BOO!

I still have some Halloween decorating to do & some new things to try & put out this year!!

So stay tuned! Oh & Happy Haunting!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

15 Years ago today...THIS boy was born

He has been my everything since the day he was born...

my 1st son

my first love

my 1st true panic attack (LOL)

he has made me smile




he has taught me to be patient




he has shown me that life is too short & that every second is precious no matter what trials & tribulations you have going on in life.

Having him has shown me just how fast time goes by & how much love a person can have for another human being.

While he is just a teen & really has no idea just how much I love him...one day I know he will!

Happy Birthday to my Baby Boy!!!!

May today be as special as you are to me!

I love you to the moon & back!!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

He has arrived!

He is FINALLY here .... my Nephew Bradley! I now lovingly call him "Squishy" thanks to my cousin Christy who stated, "he is just so squishy" when he was 1st born & he most certainly is because all I wanna do when I see him is squish him all over just out of pure love for him!

What a happy day that Bradley was born!

I have not created much since Tuesday because I am just sooo excited to see him & hold him everyday! But I have taken probably 200 pictures of him since his arrival so that's why I am going to share some of my fav's today just because I am so in love with him & want to share him with everyone!

Look at that smile....isn't he just a doll baby!!

I am so excited for My sister & brother-in-law to have such a beautiful boy!

Isn't it so sweet how my youngest son loves his baby cousin so much already....I cant wait to see all the things he will teach him!

This is THE FIRST time my oldest son has ever held a baby besides his brother!!

Here my boys are in 2002.....amazing how fast time goes by!

We are a family of Boys & "BOY" do I love it!!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Stars of hope in Joplin, MO

Busy creating Stars of Hope for Joplin

Friday evening my son & I made some stars for Stars of Hope for Joplin, to recognize those who perished on 9-11-01 & 5-22-11

my little artist

here are our stars

the begining of 3500 stars that were posted through the streets of Joplin this last weekend.

These stars were so fun to make & hold so much meaning to communities that need to heal!

I am so happy to be a part of such an inspiring gift. I also makes my heart sing, that I could share an event like this with my son so he can learn the meaning of doing something beyond himself. He was very excited about being a part of something so meaningful.

So many kids made such beautiful stars & it was so exciting to see the stars in Joplin.

Please check out New York says Thank You & Stars of Hope here:

remembering 9/11

Today my family created an everlasting memory. Today we were a part of history & it was such an honor to be a part of it!

Today, on the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the United States, the citizens of Joplin were invited to stitch the final patches onto the flag that was pulled from the wreckage and hung on the mangled metal in the days that followed 9-11-2001

This flag has spent the last year travelling all 50 states to be mended by Americans & to serve as a reminder of how strong & resilient we as Americans are.

This flag symbolizes how we came together as a nation on 9-12-2001 & how we continue to come together in times of need for our fellow Americans.

It is fitting that Joplin, Mo was the last community to repair this flag, as we are a community that is rising up from the tragedy that struck us on 5-22-2011 when a deadly EF5 tornado ripped our town to pieces.

We are a community that has come together to help our neighbor just like we are a nation that came together to help fellow Americans.

Please read more about the flag here:


The flag being ushered in by our very brave servicemen

The mended flag that is being hailed as the current day Star Spangled Banner

Do you see that little white square on the bottom of the blue?

In that little white square are threads of blue that came from the flag that President Lincoln was laid out on following his assassination (Gives me goose bumps)

Here is the Mr. doing his part to mend the flag that means so much to this country

There is my youngest boy sewing for the 1st time EVER & I am so proud of him for stitching the flag today
he went to bed tonight with his little memorial flag over his heart & even asked to be sure he laid it over his heart in just the right place.

My Oldest son, it makes my heart happy to see him be a part of something with such meaning

& there I am.....I cried most of the memorial service so it is probably a good thing you cant see my face !

the flag will be placed in the 9/11 memorial museum so that all who see it will be reminded of how we as Americans come together in times of crisis & need.

always in our memories & Forever in our hearts

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Baby Love

I am anxiously awaiting my nephew to arrive!!

He is in there ready to meet the world VERY soon!

This is my sister (I know ...... isn't she beautiful)

We had a very fun time tonight taking pictures of her belly~at one point I thought she was going to laugh that baby right out of her tummy!

Hey an Auntie can hope!

I finished a baby mobile that my sister wanted to hang over the crib. She wanted it made out of some of the decorations from the baby shower BUT after it was all said & done it was too long so we decided it should hang in the corner & I am going to make a new one to hang over the crib!

When I get the new mobile done I will post some pictures but for now I will show you the one I made for the corner.

This was how it started

but then......

Little by Little.......

we ended up with this!!

(Isn't my pool in the back ground attractive...that thing needs some help) but the mobile on the other hand came out really cute...just super LONG!

I could shorten it up but I think the length makes it fun AND I really want to make a fabric poof mobile so this gives me an excuse.

So as we hold our breath & wait for baby Bradley......I will keep creating!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Yummy Lemon Cake

Back in July my cousin asked if I would bake a cake for our friends baby shower.....I love to bake so of course I said YES!

I unwittingly set myself into a journey of the lemon cake!

When someone asks you to bake a cake.....you NEVER make one from a box & since I had never made a from scratch lemon cake, I scoured recipe after recipe until I found one that looked like it would be the best. Not only did I find a yummy cake recipe but I thought I would make lemon curd from scratch too! I thought this would be really hard but it was just the opposite & I know I will be making the curd & the cake again!!

Now, I had every intention of baking this cake a week or 2 in advance to try it out BUT as life does, time got away from me!

So I put all my faith in the recipe I found & hoped for a masterpiece!

This is what I got........

not too shabby if you ask me!

I just need to remember to take a pic of the inside of the cake next time!

Learn as I go...Learn as I go

Did I mention the frosting?? No??

well the frosting was to die for.....it was a cream cheese frosting with lemon juice & zest!

It was amazing!!

This was what the rest of the goodies looked like but I can't take credit for that, my cousin worked really hard on the rest of the shower....I only did the cake!

I got a lot of compliments on this cake & someone even asked if I baked cakes for a living....of course I said no & my cousin quickly piped up & said I should! One cake at a time is great for me more than that & I would be in high stress mode! *wink

It was a beautiful shower with beautiful gifts for a beautiful baby on the way!

Friday, September 2, 2011

The BaBy Q

My baby sister & her husband are ready to have their 1st BABY!! I am so excited to have a nephew on the way! Last week I threw them a BaBy Q!! This took a few months of planning & scouring the net for some ideas I could borrow & change up!

Right off the bat I knew I would have to make my own invitations...nothing store bought would do in this instance so I made my very own with a moving mini pinwheel & all! I didn't manage to get a picture of it on my camera BUT I did take a picture of the shadow box I gave my sister to commemorate the baby shower itself & one of the invites is in there!

Aside from planning my wedding, this was the next biggest party I have planned! (I know right!)

I wanted every detail to be as close to perfect as possible & I wanted my sister to have a baby shower that would be very memorable for them. Here are some things I created just for her & her Hubs (& baby Bradley of course)

Here is the Birthday wishes box I created for him. If you have never seen this before...it is very cool! Every guest writes a wish on a numbered piece of "pretty" paper & it gets wrapped & taped around a birthday candle. Every year on his birthday he will read that years birthday wish! Just ingenious! I 1st discovered this on A Turtles Life For me blog http://aturtleslifeforme.blogspot.com/I have never seen or heard of it before so I just had to do it! In that Blog she used a candle wallet......very CUTE!

I used a store bought heavy duty card board box & used Mod Podge to seal the paper on after I stamped all over the top :)I wanted to be sure the box would last for many years & in my opinion Mod Podge is good for that~I also made sure the inside of the box was done too

Wish one Complete!!

Next I had a fantastic idea of having all the guests write some parental advise to the parents on an apron (in the shower colors of course)

I found that a silver sharpie worked best for the apron project. I also had a bib for guests to write on but that was just REALLY hard to write on! lesson learned on that one!

I made thank you gifts for the guests.......& of course I wanted it to be something special (go big or go home right?) I made a spice rub & named it Temper Tantrum rub. I saw on most blog posts that people did BBQ sauce but this was not cost effective for me so a rub it was! Then they got stuffed into Tiffanyesque (yes I just made that word up) & wrapped them with a red ribbon

everyone loved the mini boxes & The rub was good too

(we used that same rub on the chicken & brisket served that day)

Here are some pictures of the decorations as well as the scrumptious goodies I made for my sister who doesn't like cake (I know its a complete sin)~what I came up with were Oreo cookie truffle pops & a peanut butter Rice Krispie cake!! My mom also made little tarts & they were a big HIT the crust was light & flakey & VERY buttery! A nice spread for a girl who doesn't like cake!

OH & the cake plate!!! I made that too!!!! I will go more in detail on that in a later post

I deemed these chairs the Thrones...this is where Mom & Dad got to open all the gifts!

Isn't that the CUTEST onesie EVER!

Full on dessert HEAVEN!! I also made all those pinwheels & let me just say, it was a lot of fun, I haven't made paper pinwheels since I was a little girl!!

I had a really good time with the aqua & red color scheme too! Very fun colors!

Can you believe we had about 30 people in there at one point!! amazing!

Here was the food table

(& somehow I never managed to get a picture of all the wonderful BBQ items the Mr. made)

I made those pom poms ~not from a kit either! :) took a couple of tries to get it right but in the end I was very pleased with them!

activity table

This is the banner I made for Mr. Bradley's room. The only thing pre-made on this were the shiny chipboard letters. I had SO much fun making this that I see a lot of banners for all in the future (Like try one banner for every holiday) yes indeed, complete fun!

I was so excited about this banner, that I couldn't wait for my sister to see it, it was like Christmas for me watching her get a look at it for the 1st time.

This shower was a lot of fun to put together & I really have to hand it to the Mr. because he put up with me going a little crazy over it & he helped me tremendously that day so that I could enjoy myself (thank you Mr.~xoxo)

Here was his Domain for the day :)
Ahhhh The King of his Grill

The new parents to be!!

A good time was had by all!