Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Come on In....Master Bedroom!

Linking up with the lovely Andrea for her Come On In series!

I'm not going to lie this post is a bit hard for me to write as my master bedroom is in serious need of some decorating love.  Not to mention our bedroom is where my will to fight my husband on his clutter loses steam.  And I hate that.  I am willing to put up the fight in the rest of the house but the stack of god knows what on his dresser?  I can't even go there.  Which is a real shame because I feel like when you have small kiddos, your bedroom becomes a refuge of sorts. 

Now don't get me wrong, my kids are always welcome in my bedroom.  We love to cuddle in bed and watch cartoons.  The kids are always in my closet trying on my shoes and scarves and generally wrecking havoc on my organization.  Natalie also loves to change out the pictures on our nightstands.  :) 

Though I want our room to not give me anxiety when I step foot in there....which it does from time to time because of the chaos.  If I am being truthful, I think I am less concerned about the clutter because our room is not quite pulled together in terms of décor.  It has a mish-mashed feel of items that we tried to make work in there and a design aesthetic that has grown old in the 2 years since we moved into our home.

So I am sharing a little piece (what is presentable!) in hopes of getting ideas from all you wonderful ladies!  Can't wait to see everyone's master bedrooms!

Looking in from our door.  It sure looks like our bed takes up the whole room!  We have about 2 feet on either side of our bed to the walls and I have really struggled with how to fill the space on the floor as well as the walls.  It would be ideal to have a quiet reading space but I am sure the chair will just end up being a clothes holder!
In this picture, you can also tell that we used 2 shades of grey to paint our room.  The wall behind our bed, the ceiling and our master bath are all a shade darker than the 3 other walls in our room.

 From the other side of the room.  They are not in the picture but to right of the bed is my dresser (on the wall with our door) and to the left is my hubby's (on the wall with our windows).

Hanging over our bed are 2 canvas photographs that we took while on our honeymoon in Kauai, Hawaii.  I adore those pictures and they hold such wonderful memories but I am not sure they are best suited over the bed.  I think they may look nice stacked on my side with the aforementioned reading chair/nook.
The middle canvas is something I made with vinyl and thumb tacks.  It says "Together is our favorite place to be".  I like that it ties in with the honeymoon pictures. 
Try not to be jealous of my bed making skills!  Ha!!!

This is a picture from our wedding that my Matron of Honor gave us.  During my wedding planning I found a beautiful blessing called the 'Blessing of the Hands'.  It made me tear up every (yes, EVERY and even to this day) time I read it so I knew it had to be incorporated into our ceremony.  Our priest did an amazing job reading it and I love that we have the words and picture of the moment from the ceremony in our bedroom.

I couldn't find a link to the exact blessing we used though there are many versions online.  If you are curious here is the blessing as we used it....
These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and vibrant with love, that are holding your on your wedding day as you pledge your commitment to each other and promise to love each other all the days of your life. 
These are the hands that will work long hours for you and your new family. 
These are the hands that will work along side yours, as together you build your future, as you laugh and cry, as you share your secrets and dreams. 
These are the hands that will hold each child in tender love, soothing them through illness and hurt, supporting and encouraging along the way, and knowing when it is time to let go. 
These are the hands that will countless times wipe tears from your eyes, tears of sorrow and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will hold you tight as you struggle through difficult times, they will comfort you when you are sick , and console you when you are grieving.
These are the hands that will give you support as you encourage each other to chase down your dreams, together as a team, everything you wished for can be realized.
These are the hands that will love and cherish you through the years, for a lifetime of happiness.
And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.
God, bless these hands that you see before you this day.  May they always be held by one another.  Give them the strength to hold on during the storms of stress and the dark of disillusionment.
Keep them tender and gentle as they nurture each other in their wondrous love.  Help these hands to continue building a relationship founded in your grace, rich in caring and devoted in reaching for your perfection.
May Lauren and Matt always see their four hands as healer, protector, shelter and guide.  We ask this in your name.  Amen
So there it is!  I absolutely adore the wall colors in our room.  They are hands down the perfect shades of grey and really allow us to decorate with many different accent colors.  When we initially moved in we had a very neutral, grey bed spread and it was just too blah, hence, the very statement-like bedspread we have now. 
I think this year will be a good time to revamp the whole room and figure out how to fall in love with my bedroom!  So bring on the ideas, ladies!!!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Weekend Adventures

A few posts ago I mentioned that we got a new dog from my mom.  Well, the reason Kenzie needed to come live with us (beside the fact that we were supposed to take her as a puppy but instead had a new baby) was because my mom had a new litter of puppies.
Awwww!  I just love little puppy faces!  Natalie was so sweet with the puppies and loved that she could hold them and snuggle! 

Chase really loved spending time with the puppies too.  He was so cute when he would get 'down to their level' and talk to them.  :)  I thought it was sweet but it did cause one of the puppies to take refuge under the coffee table!  #oops
So much fun loving on the new puppies!
We spent Saturday night celebrating a little one's 1st birthday and then got up bright and early Sunday for a family fun day.
Not far from our house you can cross over into Illinois via a river ferry.  I thought the kids would love it and it was a great way to be outside enjoying the cooler temps.
It is generally pretty flat around here but I always love the beauty of the bluffs around the river.

We got the kids out on the ferry ride so they could really soak in the experience.  The wind was blowing in their hair!  Ha!
Family pic while we cross the muddy Mississippi!  The kids absolutely loved the river ferry and Natalie declared it the best part of the day!  Over ice cream!!!!  :)  Love how these little things can make such a big impact on our memories and bring us such joy!
After the ferry ride, we did a scenic drive thru a park just over the river.  We found a beautiful overlook and decided to stop and have a picnic lunch in the back of our SUV.  Again, such a small thing that the kiddos thought was "SO COOL!!"  :)  

This face!!!  He just melts my heart :)

With my sweet girl. 

I just love this picture so much!  Natalie's sweet smile, Chase's 'cheese' face and my half-laughing, way too big smile is a great showcase of our day and how these kiddos are most of the time. 

3 out of 4 ain't bad!

On top of the world!  My little beauty showing off the beauty of our world!

 Plus, we stumbled on another cake!  In case you missed and want to learn all about the cake aspect of St Louis' 250th birthday celebration you can check it out here.
We finished up the day exploring a few little shops in the downtown area of the small town and having ice cream.   Yum!
It was a great weekend before our busy week...  Preschool, swim lessons for Chase, a Parents as Teachers visit and my very first meeting with a new MOPs group! 
Next weekend is supposed to be beautiful as well so I am already planning another fun adventure!  Bring on Fall!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Friday Favorites - Fall Edition

Today I am linking up with a couple of my favorite bloggers,
 Andrea and Erika to share our Friday favorites!
Today I am sharing my some of my Fall favorites!
After a long summer of tank tops and shorts, I am always ready to wear jeans, long sleeves and light jackets.  I love the crisp air that makes jeans and long sleeves a necessity but doesn't require us to be completely bundled up. 
We have family pictures planned for October (eek!) so I have been searching high and low (on Pinterest, of course) for color palette inspiration.  Sadly, in the process I realized that I own very little (basically none) warm tone clothes.  I have no shirts in the Fall palettes that I keep seeing online.  What is a girl to do?  Am I thinking too literal and I should go with a simple black shirt, leopard scarf and simple shoes?  My leopard scarf has a really pretty orange that I could use to pull my outfit into the rest of the family's outfits. 
Or do I just go shopping for a new shirt??  #whataterribleproblem ;)
We tend to end up with some shade of blue so I am hoping to get out of that box.
I love the warmness of the deep red in this one but I want to keep it from looking to Christmas-y
I like all the neutral-ness and fall-ness of these outfits.  Scarves, layers, boots and ballet flats, YES!
vest // olive skinnies // neutral collage source not found
One of my very favorite things about Fall is baking.  Any baking is good but I really love incorporating pumpkin spice into desserts.  In fact, last year when I was invited to a "Favorite Things" party (bring 3 of your favorite items for $5 or less) last year, I brought a pumpkin spice gift pack with pumpkin spice pudding and pumpkin spice Hershey Kisses - recipes included too!  Yes, I did.  :)  Because who doesn't love pumpkin spice in their Fall cookies?! 

My favorite Fall cookie recipe is Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Pumpkin Cookies from Chef-In-Training.  These are so ridiculously good I can't do them justice with words.  If you bake nothing else pumpkin spice this Fall, at least try these.  Soooo yummy!
Another favorite pumpkin spice cookie recipe in our home is this little treat from Sprinkle Some Sunshine.

The dough has the perfect touch of cinnamon that makes it delicious on its own but the pumpkin spice kisses kick it up an extra notch.  I can hardly wait to make a batch of these yummy cookies!
I have been busy, busy, busy pinning new Fall dessert recipes the past few weeks in anticipation of the upcoming season.  Every year we go apple picking so I know I will need a couple yummy apple recipes in addition to homemade applesauce in the crockpot and mini apple pies.  Last year I made lots of baby food with the apples we picked but we are past that stage of life now so bring on the apple desserts! 
I'm thinking Baked Apple Pie Egg Rolls from Chef in Training or maybe Apple Snickerdoodle Coobler by Baked by Rachel will be my sweet treat for apple season.  Both look so yummy!

As for pumpkins, I have quite a few new recipes I want to try but realistically I will probably only get a few new ones in the rotation.  These are the ones at the top of my list...
Simple Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls by Mix and Match Mama.  Pumpkin?  Cinnamon?  Yes, thank you!
I have been obsessed with scones lately so I will definitely be trying these pumpkin scones from Cooking Classy
Hmm, apparently I have a thing for pumpkin breakfast items!  Lol!  :)
Fall is probably my favorite time to decorate as well.  While I love Christmas and all the beautiful décor that goes with it, the Fall decorations signal a change in seasons and I love the warmness it gives to a home.  Especially after the house has been void of holiday decorations most of the summer!
I bought the supplies to make this wreath because we all know my love of the letter P!  ;) 
Though looking at it again, I'm not sure I bought enough of the garland to ensure it is full enough.  Hmm, I guess we will see what happens...
via Etsy

I'm also thinking about trying to make these creepy little guys to incorporate into my Halloween décor.
Are you all as excited for Fall as I am?!?!?!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Hello again!

Well, hello there.  Hello to you too, September.  You sure snuck up on me while we were busy enjoying our last month of summer!
In August we got a dog....
Meet Kenzie a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. 
She likes to snuggle with Natalie ;) 

In August, we drove 3 hours to catch up with one of my closest friends and an old college roommate and her family....
We introduced our girls for the first time and they just loved hanging out.  It had been 2 long years since we had seen each other but it was like no time had passed.  Love her so much!

In August, we played in the sprinkler in our clothes... 

In August, we played dress up in fancy princess shoes...
In August, this sweet girl let me curl her hair for the first time...

In August, I was lucky enough to babysit my sweet niece one day...

In August, we wore a lot of our food...
In August, we started dance and tumbling class...

In August, we posed for random pictures...
In August, we celebrated my sweet girl's 4th birthday...
 At a local children's museum on her birthday.
Patiently waiting for her birthday brownies

 Celebrating with surprise balloons just outside her room!
Showing off her birthday presents! 
(I have had this dollhouse in my basement for MONTHS - I got it for 70% off(!!!) at Target's after Christmas clearance sale!)

 Celebrating with family with a My Little Pony party

Playing her new My Little Pony game with Grandpa and Bella.
Please excuse the fact that it looks like a tornado went thru my living room....because one did, in the form of a 4 year old opening birthday presents!  Lol!
And last but not least, in August we visited Natalie's new preschool and met her teacher...
More to come on Natalie's first day of preschool!!!  Such an exciting time for my sweet girl  :)
In August, we also saw a couple of movies in the theater, we went swimming, we had donuts with friends, we celebrated more family birthdays, we celebrated a baptism and we played, a lot!  So much fun!