Dec 31, 2014

Christmas, Blogging and a New Year


And just like that, the Christmas season is over!


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What fun we had though!!  Even if it was the first green Christmas since the year before Olivia was born! But that didn't hold back our Christmassy feelings!  Having the girls home has been great, especially because Dave is off so we all got to enjoy their break together!  And unlike the song, we are not already waiting for school to start again....even if these gals took it upon themselves to dress like little hipsters this season....




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....maybe there's a little more 'city' in these girls then I realize?!?!



We had family in on Christmas eve and on Boxing day and then went to Dave's side of the family on the Saturday.  My brother and his wife could not make it home for the holidays but sent gifts that the kids got to open earlier on Christmas eve - a great way to keep them happy and busy while I prepared food for my mom and her husband later that night.




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Our Christmas morning came...not so early actually....I think we slept in until about 7:30! A treat for us with these Littles of ours!  We tourtured them by making them wait until after breakfast to open gifts!  I loooove drawing it out like that!  And, for the second year, we had no where to go and no one coming that day so we could take as long as we liked!




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And though I tried hard to cut back (see my post here) I still might have....technically tied together two or three gifts...making them one...for their gifts under the tree! I know...bad....it was suppose to be only ONE but I'm learning...I am...cutting back...baby step style! lol!




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So the kiddos got plenty of gifts...not too much...I think...but they had fun and were very excited!!! And even Alice got right into all of it, after her nap that is!  We had the bigger kids open their stockings and presents and while they were busy enjoying their new goodies, Dave and I had our gift exchange.  Alice woke up after and had fun opening...and munching on her gifts.





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I can't believe we just celebrated her first Christmas!  It doesn't feel that long ago we did this with Joseph...though I guess it wasn't really...still, how fast these kiddos are growing!


And yes, I found time to get a few more festive activities in, mostly pertaining to baking for gifts for family.   Last year, after Christmas, my hubby was at the store and picked up (on super clearance sale) the best little gingerbread cookie cutter.  It makes the cut-outs for baking up mini gingerbread houses...and so I have been waiting almost a year to use it!!  And use it I did! Pumping out fourteen of these babies....much to the dismay of my wrists! (later learning that I was using too much icing in my icing bag! duh!)



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Aren't they adorable?  And my lens cap is there to give you an idea of the size, they were about two inches in height but seriously tall on the tasty factor!!!


So that sums up the happenings for the past week.  And now, the new year is on the horizon and with that, marks the fifth 'birthday' of my blog!  January first, five years ago I started plunking away words and images in this little corner of the internet.  I find it hard to believe that I am entering my sixth year of blogging....or more so of rambling! lol!


I have tossed around the idea of whether to continue it or not....my readership seems to have quieted down...or at least those that comment and no, I don't just blog for the readers or the comments but they certainly are encouraging.  I do, however, realize the true significance of what my little blog has done.  It has created a record for me of the last five years....more so the last three, where I really opened up and made it more personal...but a wonderful record of the life of my family for a half decade.  It has been a testimate to the workings of God in our lives, both the big and small and our struggles, joys, and everything else in between!


And not only does this space provided a running record of our lives but it has also brought me a dear friendship!  One that I treasure up dearly! ;)  I also have found great encouragement at the fact that, despite my average to poor English marks in school, I find that I enjoy writing and on occasion, I'm not too bad at it either! hahaha!





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And so the new year is fast approaching and in the fashion of most since adding to our family, we will have a quite night at home.  I look forward to the new year, as I often do, with it's fresh start feeling and the sense of endless possibilities!  I do plan to continue to blog...not sure what it will look like, if I will change formats, feelings...or just keep on keeping on, with my various rambles and notions.  


I feel that 2015 should be a year of me getting more serious about things....maybe being a bit more intentional about....everything! lol!  I have high hopes that both encourage and overwhelm me, but I will take it all, one day at a time....at least I'll try to!


And well, the kids are outside waiting and Dave is getting the baby in her snow suit so we can go take a walk on this gorgeously sunny, last day of 2014.  So I leave you all with a prayer of much joy and blessings for a year that brings you ever closer to our Lord!   


Love to all!!!

- Kaitlin





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Dec 22, 2014

Cranking Out Christmas


Only three more sleeps people!! Oh what fun we have been having this Christmas season! We've been merry making the whole month long, partaking in all sorts of Christmassy fun and really soaking up the season!


And in no particular order here are some of the highlights of the month:


Our girls' school Christmas play!  LOVED IT!!  It was called "Christmas in Black and White" and it was adorable!  My gals were apart of the penguin chorus as they are too little to have speaking parts.  The play is super sweet and has a great gospel message!  My sweet little Ladies did amazing, especially our Olivia who was old enough to be apart of every song and who certainly knew all the words and actions! 



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And no, my Catherine did not 'steal' the show this year - she kept her socks on and did not pick out lint from between her toes! (see last year's post if you want a refresher on that! lol!)  And my favourite part of the whole production was after the evening show when they closed the night in prayer!  It was just beautiful!



Our house was more full for the last week or so.  My mom's two dogs were staying with us while she and her husband were on vacation for two weeks.  All I will say is that it was a great chance to confirm my thoughts that we do NOT need a dog any time soon!  My sister was staying at my mom's and took care of the pups for the first part of their time away....but we had the dogs for ten days which was long enough...a nice treat for the kids but it was great to be able to send them back home at the end of  it all!


Joseph insisted that the dogs have their treats served on a plate! lol!


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My sister was here for a few days as a stop over before travelling back to BC.  She and her boyfriend had moved to Ontario five months ago but things didn't work out quite as well as they would have liked and apparently the pull of the West has won (for now!).  So she and her boyfriend have just completed the five day venture back to B.C.  I'm sad that they went, but I know it's what they need right now....but I will in no way relent on enticing them to return! *wink!*



I've been busy being crafty this year.  From the oodles of decorations around the home, to baking, chocolate making, creating and sewing, it's been busy but fun!  I made three festive pillow covers in one afternoon.  Easy peasy, envelope style ones and all for super cheap!  All three were made mostly with fabric I had on hand and also using some tea towels I purchased at the dollar store! 



Two of the pillow covers I made and my paper Noel sign that I created a few years back.

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One crafty project I did was with two dear gal pals of mine, my besty and the third component to our trio of trouble!   It was something I had wanted to do for some time now but hadn't actually gotten around to it.  So when my sweet friend suggested we get together and get busy I was on board!  Our little project?!  Home made lip balms!


Using only four ingredients, we set to work.  There was a bit of trial and error and a few things we might change for next time but in the end we had some fantastic lip balm!  And one thing you might not know about me (unless you know me outside of blog land) is how much I am addicted love lip balm!





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We made two great flavours; a sweet orange, grapefruit and a peppermint one.  They are all natural and feel amazing, they didn't take that long to make them and it was a great team effort!!  And in the end we all had oodles of balms to give away...or keep!



The kids are super excited for Christmas this year, even Joe...though I know he doesn't 'get it' exactly.  One of my favourite traditions we have as a family is our our annual, hot chocolate and light watching tour.  We make (or buy) hot chocolate (or something else for mom and dad!) and load everyone into the van.  We put on the Christmas tunes and then drive around "ooing" and "awwing" at all the lights.  It was loads of fun and with it being such a mild winter this year, it felt like there were more lights then ever!



Breakfast one morning this month - all four of them,
 bright eyed and chipper and it wasn't even light out yet! 

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I really enjoyed decorating this year...though with hubby still off from work for parental leave we had to watch the dollars a bit more (or should watch the dollars!)  Other then buying four new sets of lights for the tree (because ALL of our other ones had burned out....because I believe it has been a number of years since we bought any new ones) and I spent $5 on the greenery to make the basket on my front porch, I spent no money on decorations.  That might not sound like a big deal to some of you but I love to decorate for Christmas and usually pick up a few new things each year.


Re-purposed and creatively altered decorations!  The greenery is new, but the basket is from last year.
You can see my wreath looking a bit different in this post.  I like a good decorating challenge!

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But the house is all festive, cozy and a little more simplified them most years....and even though I'm enjoying all the holiday decore....I'm already looking forward to taking it down and a fresh start for the new year!!  Yeah...I'm strange like that!



If you remember from last year (this post) where I finally got around to a project I had been wanting to do for some time!?1  It was to make, from my girls' baby clothes, Christmas stockings for them.  I loved the final product and how easy they were to make, so I gathered my supplies once again and got to work on a stocking for Joseph!




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It too, turned out great (if I do say so myself!).  I love how this idea all came together - even though a baby clothes quilt would have been fun, (my original plan for these articles) this idea is much more realistic for me! lol!  And I love how practical, useful and sentimental these stockings are now!  And Joe likes his stocking too!




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So now, next year, I just have to make one for Alice!  I'm already, as she is outgrowing piece, putting some aside with this idea in mind!  


And speaking of my sweet cheeked babe - she's seven months old now!  She's just as much a doll as ever and growing so fast!  She absolutely ADORES her big siblings and refuses to not be apart of anything that we are all doing together.  Which means, even though she's not onto finger foods yet, she insists that she sits with us for every meal! 




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She's such a sweet and good baby and I'm really enjoying watching her grow!  I love seeing her eyes light up whenever one of her siblings walks into the room and how intently she wants to be with them and do what they do!  



But one thing little Alice did not get to be apart of was our traditional short bread cookie making.  Actually...we haven't done this one in a couple of years but this year we got back to it.  It was the first year that Joe could help put the cherries on the cookies and he did a pretty good job!




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This recipe was my granny's and it's a classic in our home.  My granny always used one of those old fashioned cookie presses to make her shortbread and when my dad was younger he found, for 98 cents at a second hand store, the same cookie press his mom used.  So when he made these cookies with my gals, he would bring his press with him.  When he passed away a couple of years ago... (almost three now...wow...) I asked my step-mom for the press.  My Aunt has my granny's original one but now I have my dad's press.  I'm not quite as good as the 'masters' but I think I did a pretty decent job and I'm happy to officially add this tradition to our family's Christmas celebrations!



This year both of my girls are reading, so it's neat to see so much of the world opening up for them!  Even right down to them reading the gift tags, I love it!  And thankfully too because apparently we bought them a lot of books for Christmas!!  My little Ladies are maturing so much lately, yet they are still very innocent and I treasure that!  I love seeing the people they are becoming!  They are so excited for this Christmas and I am excited for them!




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And well...that's a number of the highlights from this busy, joyous, hectic, wondrous, memory making month!  I pray that each of you is wonderfully and amazingly blessed this holiday!  May you enjoy all the good gifts that our God gives to you daily and truly, find joy, in the greatest gift ever given - our saviour Jesus!










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Dec 20, 2014

The Donkey in the Living Room by Sarah Raymond Cunningham :: Review


The Donkey in the Living Room - written by Sarah Raymond Cunningham and illustrated by Michael Foster, is a modern approach to the nativity advent tradition.




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The story opens with an invitation for your family to use this book to begin a new tradition. The author explains how each morning, starting nine days before Christmas, the children in her family would rush downstairs to find a figure wrapped in paper.  They'd open it to discover a character from the nativity scene.  After opening the little package, their father would tell them a part of the story of Christ's birth but told from the point of view of the character that was unwrapped that morning.


The author shares with us, how over time, she began to realize that the true gift of Christmas was not the figures unwrapped each morning but the telling of the story of the birth of Christ.




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The rest of the book is the guide for parents to read to their children, telling their little ones Christ's birth story and all from the points of view of the various 'characters' that were present at that blessed time.


The whole story is written in rhyme and in today's language and slang, including phrases such as, "As Mary's belly was getting ready to pop..." and "The shepherds didn't know what had just hit,".   Not your usual telling of the Christmas story but not with out it's accuracy as well.


I liked how it touched on things such as the census being taken and why Mary and Joseph had to travel to Bethlehem.  I enjoyed the fact that the author included the importance of Christ's coming leading to His death and resurrection.  She really tried to keep the focus that this time of year is to be about remembering who Christ is and what He did for us!



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I certainly loved the illustrations!  They are bright, cheery and fun!  I love the people and the animals are adorable.  Each day has a full coloured picture and also a smaller illustration to give you an idea of where in the stable to place each character...not to mention a few other details.


Over-all, The Donkey in the Living Room is certainly cute and catchy but not exactly for my family and I.  Partially because we already have our own advent countdown and this offered nothing especially new for us.


But if you have young children, (or even for the grand babies) and are looking for something a bit different or just a way to start your own nativity tradition, then this just might be the book for you!  You can also order the book with the matching ten wooden characters, here.









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And if you haven't been counting down the days....there are only five more sleeps!!










The good people at B&H Publishing gave me this book in exchange for my honest review.







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Dec 7, 2014

Gold, Frankincense and Materialism


Have you heard of the three gifts for Christmas idea?  About a year ago now, was when I first heard about it but this is the first year we are putting it into practice.


What is this all about, you ask?


For those of you who don't know...or if you are looking for a reminder, the idea goes something like this.  For your family's gifts you stick to only three gifts under the tree.  The gifts are called gold, frankincense and myrrh....sound familiar!?!?



 
 Now, what these gift represent exactly, is up to your family, but the version we are going with is this;

Gold - a gift that the person really wants
Frankincense - a gift to encourage or build up their spiritual walk
Myrrh - a gift of something for the body (or something they need)


There is a theory that the three gifts brought to Jesus by the Magi held special symbolism or meanings, particularly to the life Jesus had come to live.  Gold represented His kingship, frankincense was a symbol of His priestly role, and myrrh a prefiguring of his death and embalming. So the gifts we receive based on these themes, sort of represent the same type of ideas.  Gold a want, often the more expensive of the gifts.  The frankincense, for our spiritual walk, correlating with Christ's priestly role and myrrh used in preparing the body for burial, thus a gift for the body. (Not as morbid as it sounds, think clothing, jewellery, skates, etc.)





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I had heard of this idea from a friend of mine and thought how wonderfully simple it could make my holiday shopping!  I thought that...until I had to put it into practice!  Because I love... like....love to shop!  I Christmas shop all year long!! Mostly because it saves me mad cash, while allowing me to get amazing gifts but also because I enjoy it!!  But this year it has been different.  This year I had to stop myself and think more about the purchases I wanted to make.  Each gift had to count more, mean more....be thought out more because it was the only one for that category!  It has been different but it has been good!




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One of my love languages is gift giving, so I found this idea of only three gifts quite challenging.  I love to give gifts!! I love to hunt out, (all year, as I said!) that "just right" gift.  The one that says, "I thought of you! That you are important to me and you matter!"  I love to dote on my kids, as they have such joy over the simplest things!  And yes, I love to receive gifts too - not necessarily gifts with monetary value but something that says, you care and thought about me!


So this year as we made the switch to three gifts under the tree, I realized some things.  First, it's freeing!  I don't have to keep shopping, I actually know when I am done now!  I've always struggled (read, didn't stick to at all!!) with a budget when it comes to buying gifts.  But this year, I found that it was much easier to make and stick to a budget (approximately! lol!!) because I only had a few gifts to keep in mind, so once those were bought, I was done!


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Secondly this idea lines up nicely with what God has been working on in my hubby and I for the last number of years.  That having less is sooo much more!!  God has been, and still is, walking us through the journey of purging, not hoarding and learning to live with more needs, less wants and just less over all!  It can still be a struggle, especially as we have added to our family a few times over but we are learning and the ways God has changed us is amazing....pretty much a miracle really! lol!!  So less coming in and 'piling' up under the tree means less to handle in the new year! 


And I think what I like most about this idea is how it goes so much against what our society tells us this season is all about.  It fights against the mentality of materialism that is so dominate in our part of the globe, especially at this time of the year!  Our culture is so much about more, more, more!  It's amazing how we are told to constantly strive to accumulate more stuff!  And the result of this is then to buy bigger homes, to hold all the stuff!  And then when we run out of space in our big homes, there are always storage units to pack our stuff into.  Storage units, that rival many third world houses, just to store all the stuff that doesn't "fit" into our houses!


And through all this emphasis to buy more, spend more and give more gifts we lose sight of the simple pleasures this season can offer!  The idea that people become stressed over shopping, purchasing and what to buy is silly!  I think it's the fact that a sweet simple gesture isn't enough...at least we are told it isn't enough....in fact, is anything ever enough in this culture?!  We are bombarded with the idea that everyone needs everything!  And if you don't have something, then you are less fortunate, lacking or unhappy.


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But it's not true, at least for those of us who's life and hope are found in the root of this season's true meaning.  That our life is found in Christ and nothing, nothing on this earth will satisfy or fulfil us apart from Him!  Now, I know that Christ wasn't actually born on December 25th, and that Christmas may have roots that aren't as Christian as I believe but the fact remains, that Christmas is a time to celebrate Christ!  A time to acknowledge and be in awe of the fact that God came down, became man, born of a virgin, a baby in this world and grew as a sinless man destined to save our souls.


When I focus on those truths this season, I realize just how easy it is to be swayed to the world's thinking.  That shopping, buying and piling up the gifts will bring joy and happiness to my family.  But it doesn't and it won't...not for any lasting time...or value.


I had forgotten, until just a few days ago, that after our car fiasco last year, we were pretty strapped for cash and so my husband and I decided that for he and myself, we were only going to give stocking presents.  We bought no gifts for each other for under the tree and when that memory came back to me, I remembered just how happy I really was that Christmas!!  Me, the "gifts is my love language" gal, felt loved and happy last Christmas!  And I was even more happy when there wasn't oodles of things to find places for in my home or stash away to be forgotten about.





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So I welcome this year's change! I have had moments of guilt or doubt but they are from external, worldly thoughts.  I know we are blessed with or without gifts and the "few" things we have for our kids and each other, will be more then enough!  And instead of shopping, shopping, shopping then wrapping wrapping, wrapping, we are partaking in more memory and tradition making.  Spending more time together as a family and really enjoying each other!


I know that this idea of three gifts is a good thing for our family and I encourage others to consider this idea too!  Not that buying gifts is wrong but maybe to look at the reasons we feel the need to buy so much!?


Three gifts....it's not a lot...but it was enough, for a King!







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Nov 30, 2014

Rambly, Fambly Fun


So December first is upon us tomorrow!  The house here is all decorated, the tree is up and we are ready for the advent season.  I have a bit of shopping left to do but I am mostly done!




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It's been very mild so far this 'winter' - right now there is green grass out my windows and it's looking more of March then November.  We did have some snow though...for a few days last week...just enough to get me inspired to decorate...so I was appreciative of that!




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Things have felt busy of late...some days it's good and other days not so much.  We have been off and on with various illnesses and this past weekend we had a touch of some sort of bug, again, in the house.  So we spent the weekend in pajamas, accompanied by movies and Lego.


Friday I helped out with Heritage day at the girls' school.  It's a day where they get to invite grandparents and grandfriends to come tour the school, hear a little song and enjoy a free lunch.  Myself and two other moms served up eight (or nine?!) crock pots of soup!  I wasn't feeling so great that day but managed to pull through and over-all it was a wonderful day! (later I learn my bff was praying for me - ain't she a keeper!  Praise God!)



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I love helping out, being in the school while my kids are there and connecting with other moms and people!  These are the moments I have immensely enjoyed since my girls' have gone to school! I love being involved with their school and being apart of their time there.  I get excited for field trips and I hope to be called upon to help with the set for this year's Christmas play....but I think they might have that covered already! 



A couple of weeks ago they had a character day at the school - and since we haven't done Halloween in the past, this was our girls' first opportunity to don costumes for school.  And so with a trip to the local Goodwill and dollar store and a night of sewing and jewel gluing we had ourselves a sweet fairy ballerina and a lovely little princess!




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Just recently our Catherine has lost her first baby tooth! (and has a very wiggly second one ready to join it!)  Her adult teeth are basically pushing out those baby ones and are moving in fast!!  This is all new territory for us as Olivia, though 20 months older, has had some...challenges...when it comes to dental. She didn't get her first baby tooth until she was two! And it was one of her two year old molars!!  So we have no idea when (or if?!?) she will lose her baby teeth...but I'm thinking it will be a couple of years yet!  But in the mean time we are all excited for our Caffers!!






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I thought I'd share this next grouping of photos...this was from my attempt earlier in the month to capture a shot of all four of my kiddos!  I wanted to get it before the snow set in, having no idea how unseasonably warm this month would turn out to be!!  I wanted to get the shot without coats on...because I'm vain like that....and I wanted them to all look at the camera! HA!!   It was the end of a day...I don't remember where we had been, but we had been out for most of it and it was COLD!!! Really cold!  And this...is a sample of what ensued...





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Proof that even a "photographer's" kids don't co-operate for photos!  They did pretty good buuut not well enough to give these as gifts for Grandma - so later in the month I did snag a real nice one! They were not tired, it was very much NOT cold and they did all look at the camera! (and yes, no coats! *wink*)  But I don't want to spoil any Christmas surprises...so you'll have to wait for a peek at our ONE successful shot!


And well, that's most of it to date....hard to believe that the Christmas season is upon us!  That the countdown is on and the new year is right around the corner.  Oh new years...they stir my soul they do!  Much more then any 'fresh starts' of the year!!  I feel the anticipation of this coming one already...and with no real reason as to why either!?!  But maybe it's just that fresh start feel and the idea that I need to get my butt self in gear...in many ways! 


So there you have my rambly, fambly post...filled full of sweet faces I adore and a whole whack of nothing really.  But isn't that how the days go sometimes!




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And so I look forward to finishing up my shopping, to Christmas movies with the kids, baking, tradition making, family, merry Christmas tunes, maybe some snow...not too much now!  And all that the season ahead brings!  Blessings to you and yours as we welcome the advent season!







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Nov 25, 2014

Pretty in Pink - A Sweet Baby Girl's Room


Well, seeing as my littlest Little just turned SIX MONTHS!!!! That's half a year people!! Crazy!  Anywaaays.....yes, I thought to "celebrate" I'd share pictures of her sweet baby room!  I did mention a while back that I would...and it seems I have finally gotten around to doing so...better late then never!


So here it is, in all it's pinkness!

 
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This room as a few stories to tell! What do I do that doesn't usually have a story...really...why do I always have stories to tell....*sigh* LOL!!!  First off, I never intended for it to be pink! Actually I had a whole Pinterest board going, "Alice's Oasis", I called it and all the rooms were basically white or soft creamy colours.  But then, one day, while at the local Big Box Home store I saw these three pinks side by side by side...and I was in love!
 
 
And from that moment on I had my colour scheme and my design in mind...and my Pinterest board, well...it got deleted!
 




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I didn't have much to use for Alice's room and we didn't really want to/have lots o'money to spend on it...so other then paint (which between the walls and floors, cost us dear enough) most things in this room are either very inexpensive or free, and most we already had on hand! (YAY!)


Oh...except for this one piece of art.  I saw it and knew it was exactly what her room needed!!  It was perfect and so I splurged, just a little, for it - coming in around $40.  Not bad...but more then I would usually spend on art for us!





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Isn't that just adorable!?!?! I LOVE it!! It's precious...just like the little lady who sleeps here!  The other piece of art by her crib was from a friend who was just going to get rid of it and as for the crib...we stole that from Joe!


Next in this pretty pink place, is the dresser corner.  This sweet antique cost us all of $15!! The lamp, the base was from one we had kicking around that we revived with some spray paint and the shade, a steal from Target (steal as in good deal...not pilfered! HAHA!) which I added the pink ribbon accent to.  The picture frame was from the grocery store and it was very ugly and plastic but a quick coat of spray paint and it looks almost like porcelain!  The basket and mirror we had around and two of the toys once belonged to my older gals and two are new for Alice.  The shelves where in the house when we bought it.  The book basket, I got for free - I bough her rug at a yard sale and the man through in the basket for free! (YAY!)




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And the other side of the room.  Another $15 yard sale find...the desk!  I didn't take a close up of the knobs but they are lion heads, it's really neat!  This desk has found many 'homes' in our house over the years and is working well for a change table at the moment.  The chair...you've seen it before but we moved it from the living room to here - it was a second hand find as well....$40!  I know!! Crazy eh!?!?  And since I haven't gotten around to picking up a laundry basket for this wee lady, we are using an old handmade basket that my step-mom gave us.



  
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The shelf, another of those come together and I love it even more pieces!!  First the back part - just the part against the wall.  That I found at this great little store that I love!! It was just there...I had no idea what it was or what I would use it for but I KNEW I needed it!!  When I brought it home I thought that it would be perfect in Alice's room...just not sure how....then my hubby said he could make it into a shelf and he even had wood that matched it...exactly!!!!
 
 
And the little piece of art there is something I made with some left over wall paper (from my wall project) and a(nother) spray painted frame.
 
 



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My mother-in-law found the perfect pillow at a silent auction for this darling space and that...in all honesty...is the delay on posting this.  I retook the chair photo with the pillow but I have been waiting for a sunny day and a day when I have been home, to take it! hahaha! I'm terrible...I know!  But I love it and it looks so cute in there!


As for the long piece of art over the chair.  That's one I made as well.  I've been working more with mixed medium lately and am loving it!  I believe my sister-in-law wants to get into it more as well but we both have wee ones, so finding the time isn't always easy!  She and I used to get together once a week for an art night but that was before she was married and I only with one babe in the house...but I'd love to try to set up some more focused time for art again!  I'll have to see if she'll join me!  This piece, I feel, needs a bit more reworking...all I know is it needs lace...somewhere, somehow!




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And so that sums up most of Alice's pretty in pink room!  A few more details, again mostly things we had or I made.  The tie back are made from paper, the nightlight was a gift from someone a looong time ago, the door knob was already on the closet door and the picture in the frame was ordered, for free, from Shutterfly.  It has Lamentations 3:22 on it.  I had mentioned before how I never did this with my older gals, I never did embrace all the pink, girly ideas for a room, so I had a LOT of fun creating this one!




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OH and the best part of it all.  That while we were busy painting the floor, we had to remove an old board that was blocking a hole.  We intended to put in a new floor grate but needed it out while painting.  Once the floor was dried, I was eager to get to the walls.  We worked away at them and then came the time to do the stripe around the room.  I was marking it out and had just finished, when I took a step and before I knew what was happening....





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..my foot (and thus my entire leg) was through that hole and sticking down into the living room below!  All I could hear was my Olivia exclaiming, "That's MOMMY!!"

Yes....go ahead and laugh.

My best friend did when I told her. 

Oh she laughed.

Hard!

And it was funny....a few weeks later when the ginormous bruise began to heal! 



And so...those are the stories that go with Alice's room, to date!  I hope you enjoyed the little tour and maybe were inspired to find inexpensive and free ways to be creative and have fun...and if that isn't your thing then that's fine and dandy!  Just put on the coffee and call me over! I'll be happy to get creative for you!!




And...really...can we have a post about Alice's room and not show at least one picture of her and all her adorableness!?!




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Six months....how fast is that!?!







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Nov 19, 2014

HCSB Women's Study Bible :: Review


I have never owned a study bible before and when I saw the opportunity to review this one, I was excited!  And what I thought was just going to be a nice addition to my collection has now become a new favourite!

Introducing - the Holman Christian Standard Bible: The Woman's Study Bible addition.
 I received this copy from B&H publishing in exchange for my unbiased review.




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Simply put -I love this bible!!  So where to start for my review....first, I think it's pretty! HA!! But seriously, I do and that doesn't hurt one bit!  It's full of little details, floral accents, pages softly edged in blue, silver lined edges and a lovely cover!





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And because this particular version is the Woman's Study Bible, they really focused on us as an audience and tailored the details just so!  It talks about and explains various issues that are of concern to us women and I find that helpful and encouraging!


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The format for this bible is excellent!  I love how it's two column, with the foot notes in the right or left margin.   It has neat study helps, including word study, doctrine explanations, hard questions answered, women of the bible notes and biblical womanhood issue sections, to name a few.



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From what I understand, this translation is not a translation of a translation but the writers of the HCSB went back to the original text and translated it into today's English.  I find that it is not as poetic as my NKJV but flows even easier in clarity, then my ESV.  I like how it speaks directly in modern English, yet does not simplify or 'dumb down' the intent or meaning of the passages.





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Over all, what I requested thinking would be a great study help has now become my 'everyday' reading bible!  If you are looking to get a fresh take on scripture or find a translation that is clear and concise - I highly recommend this one!








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