the last of luke’s nursery

Sigh. The day finally came when we decided to move Luke to his “big boy bed” (aka teeny toddler bed).

We had talked about doing it on a week when Ian was working an earlier shift, so we’d have a good amount of time for an extended bedtime routine if we encountered any difficulties. But when we looked at our calendar, we realized that most nights we had commitments that were going to push bedtime back anyways. So we made the switch kind of spur-of-the-moment on a Sunday morning. Which was for the best, since it didn’t leave me time to be overly sentimental about “his last night in his crib” and whatnot. Which I tend to do.

Anyways. We did it – Ian put together his toddler bed and we re-arranged all the furniture so that it fit. Luke and baby sister will be sharing a room, so we had to be creative about fitting everything in a small room. But it will be cozy and cute and Luke is really excited about sharing his room. Once we’ve settled everything in and decorated, I’ll share some photos. But don’t expect it before December!

I loved how Luke’s room was for the first couple years of his life. When he was born, we had a bare skeleton of a room – a crib with no mattress, and a couple dressers. Hey, when you have an adoption come through after the baby is already born, you don’t exactly have time to nest before bringing him home! So it took a couple months to come together, but it was a sweet room that worked well for us. And honestly, the style of the new shared room won’t be that much different. If there’s a theme to the room, it’s probably a woodland theme, which I still love. But I wanted to remember what Luke’s first room looked like.

I loved his little crib area. I designed his birth announcement, and my mom made it with her mad crewel embroidery skills (I’ve already given her baby girl’s design to work on!). My mother-in-law got those super cute animal prints from a local artist – Luke still loves to point out the animals and make up stories about them. The little collage area over his dresser is a modge podge of fun little crafted or thrifted goodies. Both the dresser and the lamp is from my childhood. The lamp also plays a lullaby and the crib figurine rocks when you wind it up (it totally freaks Ian out, but I love it).

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This room gets some nice light, and it was nice to have his changing table under the window. The stork always looked great there – I’m excited to be adding a new heart to it soon! To the left of the window is a photo of Luke’s first father’s day (only a couple weeks old) and a bib that my oma made for one of my mom’s best friends when she had a baby boy. When I had Luke, she was so sweet to pass it on to me. I absolutely love it. I don’t have a full photo of it, but my mom made the Noah’s ark hanging above the closet. She made it for me before I was born, and it always hung in my room growing up. That’s probably Luke’s favorite art in the room since he’s obsessed with Noah’s ark. :)

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This side of the room is fun – I made the trio of woodland animals before Luke was born. My BFFs made the little raccoons and twig tree for my baby shower. The good ol’ IKEA expedit has served us well, and will continue to do so!

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So that’s the grand tour – I did say his room was small. :)

And here’s a photo of the big boy in his new bed. I made the quilt for him – my first since the lap quilt I made in high school home ec! It was actually a remarkably smooth process, and Luke loves it. Overall, he’s adjusted well to his new bed – bedtimes are great, naptimes are usually fine, though he definitely uses his freedom to get up and play for a few more minutes before settling down. We are thankful for a kiddo who generally likes to sleep, so we try not to get too worked up when we have a shorter or skipped nap day.

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I’m excited to put together their new room… once that nesting instinct kicks in, I guess!

5 minute diy fall wreath and a shop giveaway

5 minute DIY fall wreathI have been all over the place with fall decorating this year. I wanted to bring fall into our house early, since I think we may decorate for Christmas earlier than usual (so we can take it down earlier than usual, before baby #2 makes her appearance). But the weather has been so bright and sunny and warm that I just didn’t feel ready to bust out all my fall decorations. So I’ve been adding autumn touches here and there over the last couple weeks, and on Sunday I decided to bust out a little autumn wreath. Sorry for the super lame lighting, but the urge to craft struck before there was any good natural light.

Step 1: grab your supplies – a wreath of whatever style/size you choose, some natural colored coffee filters, and some floral wire.

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Step 2: scrunch a coffee filter to form a flower-like shape, and secure the bottom/base of it by winding some floral wire around it and the wreath.

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Step 3: continue adding coffee filter flowers until you have desired amount (my wreath was small – about 5 inches, so I went with three).

5 minute DIY fall wreath

Step 4: depending on the size of your wreath, the flowers may seem kind of mammoth, like mine. So trim them down so they look right.

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Step 5: embellish! Use some colored twine or yarn to wrap around the top for hanging, and then add whatever little fall tidbits you have. I went with some sweet wooden beads my mother-in-law gave to me when she was cleaning out her closet (70s craft stash = my heaven), but you could do anything – more colored twine wrapped around the wreath, a little fabric bunting, a string of pine cones, some burlap bunting – it’s up to you!

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There you go – a quick little touch of autumn for your home!

Other fun news: Ashley over at Crazy.Simple.Love is hosting a giveaway for one of my mini buntings!

It warms my little heart to see my products used to create a cozy home for people, and Ashley came up with some super fun ways to decorate with my mini buntings. And not only does she do an awesome job at creating a great space for her family (she has 4 super cute kiddos!), but she loves Jesus and is all about sharing encouraging words with others. So check out her blog and be sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win a mini bunting garland of your choice!

happy october and mini buntings galore

Mmm, the arrival of fall! Pumpkin muffins, cozy blankets, comfy boots and dark, quiet mornings. Really, I love each change of season – it seems like a breath of fresh air.

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Not a lot is new around our home, we’ve just been adjusting to more of a fall routine. Luke is kind of obsessed with Noah’s ark, so we spend a lot of time playing Noah’s ark, reading various versions of the story, singing songs about the ark, and speculating about what animals might have gotten on the ark first. I don’t know why I don’t have a picture of any of this, I feel like I spend at least half my day talking about this subject.

We are gearing up to rearrange Luke’s room and get him settled into a toddler bed before little sister moves into his room in a few months. I’m excited for him to have a slightly different space, and I’m hoping it will kick-start some nesting instincts so that I can start preparing for baby’s arrival. I’ve been feeling great, growing bigger and I spend at least a few minutes every day in complete awe and thankfulness that our family is going to be growing soon!

In other news, I just added a bunch of fun new mini buntings to my etsy shop!

I just love these little mini buntings, and fall mornings are the perfect time to work on them. My party mini buntings have been pretty popular, so I’m hoping some of these fun fall garlands will find their way into some good homes.

Happy fall everyone!

summertime fun

Well, it’s been awhile since I’ve gotten around to updating this blog, so I’m going to cram the last couple months into this post.

First up: Luke’s debut at the local all-comers track meet.

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You can see he was quite serious about it.

I don’t know if I can really ever stress it enough to people, but Luke loves running. Like, really loves running. I know all two year olds like to run around, but Luke loves running for the sake of running. He would run circles around our swingset all day long if someone ran with him.

So I thought the all-comers meet would be great. And he did like it – unless he hated it. He just didn’t quite grasp the concept of only running during your race. He got pretty worked up waiting for his races, and then again after his races when he had to stop running. So yeah. He’s two.

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The “mini-jav” event. (Not pictured: his turn at the long jump pit, where he ran full speed and then veered into the other long jump pit (with the older kids) at the last second. Luckily it was clear at the time).

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Running his 50m race with mama.

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This guy keeps us on our toes, that’s for sure. We had our family vacation at the end of July, and it was great. We kicked it off with a day at the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.

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He’s started saying “cheese” for the camera, and I kinda love the smile it produces.

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After a spending the night at Ian’s grandma’s house, we continued south to Seaside, OR. Ian’s mom met us down there the next day, and his brother Jamie’s family joined us a few days later. We had a great time – Luke loved playing on the beach.

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IMG_6922He also rode the carousel numerous times.

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We also made a trip out to the Tillamook Cheese Factory – Luke and I may have gone through the sample line a couple times.

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Luke adores his older cousins, and whenever we walked anywhere, he’d quickly turn to find them so he could hold their hands.

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Adorable Miss Reese loved playing in the kiddie pool. All the kids enjoyed lots of pool time – so nice that our resort had a shallow kids’ pool that they could happily play in.

Back home the next week, we attended a Bellingham Bells game with our small group. Things were going fine – Luke was running around with the other kids down in front of the fence along left field, where we were sitting.

Between innings midway through the game, they let all the kids run across the field, from left field to right field. Ian went with Luke, who of course loved it. And it was no surprise that he kept asking to do it again afterwards.

What was a surprise was when he and our friends’ kids managed to open the gate in the fence during the seventh inning stretch. Luke bolted and ran off onto the field, with Ian in fast pursuit. Luckily the ball wasn’t in play yet, and Ian managed to nab him to the sounds of the cheering crowd. One of our friends caught their exit on his phone.

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Our next baseball outing was to the Ken Griffey Jr. Hall of Fame night at Safeco.

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It was so great to see the pre-game ceremony. Luke even enjoyed the first 10 minutes (having dinner didn’t hurt either).

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After those 10 minutes, the kid got squirrelly and spent the first half of the game running up and down the ramps and escalators with Oma. Eventually he was able to watch part of the game from our seats. He really just wanted to run on the field himself, no surprise there.

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A couple weeks ago we took Luke to his first fair! He loved seeing all the animals.

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He got to ride one ride, the carousel. He was pretty pumped about it.

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We went with our good friends, “Papa Frank and Nana,” who rank very high in Luke’s world, since they often babysit him. (And yes, it was raining pretty hard, so we all got pretty soaked – Luke’s hair got super curly!)

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And of course the other big news around our house is that we are expecting baby #2! We were super surprised and excited to find out that I was pregnant – I’ll have to write more about it later, but here are some photos for now. This was me at 12 weeks along, just a little bump and a face that portrays the first trimester exhaustion/nausea that I was feeling.

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And this is Luke when I was 12 weeks, he stepped right up to have his photo taken, with deep seriousness…

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And both of us a couple weeks ago, when I was 18 weeks…

IMG_7094I think that’s about all I can muster for an update right now! We are all happy and healthy and usually incredibly tired at the end of each day (I think that has to do with all the running and chasing that happens around here!). Hope your summer is going as great as ours!

entering into summer

Things are in full summer mode in our house now (well, except the weather, which is drizzly and overcast today). We’ve been busy working and playing outside, keeping up with Luke, and embracing summertime fun.

IMG_6589We added another raised vegetable bed and a couple wine barrels to our garden so we have more veggies this year. As always, we probably started a little later than we should have, so hopefully everything still works out okay. Luke loved using the new garden bed as his own personal play space for a couple days. Then he helped Ian plant seeds, which he loved. Almost every time we are outside he “plants seeds!” by moving around dirt or whatnot with his shovel. He will also walk around the yard asking what different plants are called – definitely his father’s son.

IMG_6597_2The kiddo also takes after his dad in his love for smoothies. He’s also mastered a pretty awesome “cheese” face.

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And he turned 2! We had a family bbq at my parent’s house, which worked out well since they are on the south side of the Skagit River bridge, which wasn’t fixed at the time, and Ian’s family all lives south of there. Luke loved seeing all his family, getting lots of attention, food, and some great play time with his older cousin Isabel.

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On Fathers Day we headed over to a local berry farm for their Strawberry Festival. We enjoyed free strawberry sundaes and Luke enjoyed a few turns on the tractor train. He is kind of obsessed with driving lately – he recently realized that he always has to sit in the back seat of the car, and now every trip involves his loud protests to “drive!” or at least sit in the “front!” Well, this little tractor train was perfect – if you ask him about it, he usually says “drive!” It may have been the best day of his life so far.

It is so fun to see his personality emerge. The minute we got out of the car and he saw the train, he hustled over to it and wanted to get on. So in he went, and a minute later he was headed out into a field with a bunch of kids he didn’t know and a man driving a tractor to who knows where. We waved as he rounded the corner and he was just happy as a clam, even though he probably had no real idea of where he was going. I had to laugh, because I was the exact opposite as a child – I would have had to watch the train go around at least five times or more, so I would know what would happen. And if there were too many other kids I didn’t know, I probably would have had no part in it. To Luke, it’s all an adventure and every kid is a potential friend. It’s been awesome to get to parent this brave, extroverted little guy.

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A few days later we headed out to another berry farm to pick strawberries. We picked 18 lbs of yummy berry goodness – well, I use the term “we” pretty loosely. I picked a couple pounds while Luke ate a few, then I spent the rest of the time running around with Luke while Ian picked, we all had a great time. We spent the next few nights putting up 17 pints of jam and a few pints of strawberry syrup. Luke got pretty creative in finding ways to nab a berry or two…

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So that’s what we’ve been up to lately! I hope your summer is off to a great start as well!

catching up

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Our little family at our church’s annual Easter egg hunt.

Wow, over a month has gone by since I’ve written in this space. I guess it was just the time of year – end of winter, Lent – when I tend to tuck into myself and my home a little more. But new life is all around, and it’s time to catch up a little.

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His little smile just melts me! (Also, he does have a diaper on in this pic, he’s not nakers!)

The biggest news around here isn’t really news, it’s just life – Luke is growing like crazy. Not so much physically (though I’m sure he’s grown a bit that way too, with all he eats), but in all the things he’s learning.

He kept putting eggs in other kids' baskets, too funny!

He kept putting eggs in other kids’ baskets, too funny!

His vocabulary is exploding, and he learns and uses several new words each day. It’s a little sad to hear him replace his baby words for more accurate pronunciations – “dol-dol” has recently become “dolphin,” and he’s started saying “dog,” so I’m not sure how much longer he’ll be using “pup-pup.” But it is so fun to hear him pick up on new words, and he is clearly proud of himself when he is able to say what he wants to say.

Showing his beloved orca and dolphin a bigger orca.

Showing his beloved orca and dolphin a bigger orca.

It’s so interesting to watch him pick up on the different uses of words – he knows that “help” can mean running to get his broom to assist me in cleaning up the dining room floor, as well as a request for me to get something for him that’s out of his reach. He usually says “help” very sweetly, along with “hand” when he wants to hold your hand or needs a little support getting down some steps. Warms my heart.

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He is also always.on.the.move. One of his favorite phrases is “run-run!,” which he generally shouts quite loudly. He runs circles around our kitchen – an activity that is especially fun if daddy chases and tickles him. He loves playgrounds, especially if there are other kids to follow around and smile at. Even though it’s still cold out, we’ve hauled out his splash table for him to play with on sunny afternoons. He loves being outdoors, so summer should be a lot of fun for him.

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Animals and books are still his favorite things. He has a bunch of little squirt toy animals that he plays with all the time. He especially loves “feeding” them (no surprise there). Sometimes we’ll line them up and I’ll ask him to point to different animals, and he asks to do that “‘gin!” and again. “‘Gin” is also a common request/demand for books – especially Curious George. He loves books about animals and a book called Jamberry, which he simply refers to as “Jam.”

Sorry it's blurry - he was feeding the kitty some hay.

Sorry it’s blurry – he was feeding the kitty some hay.

On the less pleasant side of development, we’ve definitely entered into the tantrum stage. He’s stubborn (hmm, like both his parents…), so if we aren’t walking in just the right direction or doing exactly what he wants, he breaks down and tries to exercise some control. And LOUDLY. We’re trying to be consistent and just walk through this stage of development with him. It’s actually improved a little over the last few weeks, and “bedroom time” seems to really help him when he throws a fit while we’re at home. He’s been known to walk himself to his room and shut the door, now that it’s pretty routine when he’s upset. I think he actually appreciates the opportunity to calm down by himself, in the company of his “night-night” (lovey blanket), of course.

(He was mad because I didn't let him see the photo on the camera after taking the picture)

(He was mad because I didn’t let him see the photo on the camera after taking the picture)

But mostly, it is a lot of good times around here. Exhausting for us sometimes – it’s like I can visualize this full tank of energy Luke has on his back, and my goal is to run it down to empty before naptime and bedtime each day! Our little dude eats like a kid more than twice his age, and he’s pretty slim, so you know he’s burning tons of energy each day. Praise the Lord for nicer weather and lots of parks to explore!

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Luke is such a joy and a blessing in our lives, and it’s crazy to think that he turns TWO in less than two months!