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Saturday, December 24, 2011


"The children were nestled all snug in their his beds, while visions of sugarplums danced in their his heads."

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Holiday Craft #3: Christmas Scrapbook

For my third holiday craft I'm going to share with you an idea that I thought of last year but didn't get around to making until this year. Last year I focused on organizing our Christmas cards and made my Christmas Card Saver. This year, I made a simple scrapbook with one photo from each Christmas past. There are definitely holes in our childhood years since I have to rely on our parents for the photos, so I worked with what I have. Since each year is its own 8x8 page, it is easy to add and move the pages around.

I bought an 8x8 red scrapbook from Michael's on Black Friday and made a basic (I know its boring and needs to be jazzed up) "title."

I had stacks of Christmas paper from a few years back when I literally made Christmas cards. I also bought a few sheets of black number stickers at Michael's to make it look uniform. I printed the pictures at home and got started. I didn't do anything fancy with different scissors or embellishments, just kept it focused on the picture.

This is a great project that is fun to add to year after year.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Holiday Home Tour

Since Christmas is quickly approaching (at the end of this week!) I wanted to give you a tour of our home during this time of year. Every year I decorate differently and this year presented a new challenge by the name of William. From folding up the ends of my tablecloth to not pulling out the Spode or Christmas village at all ( :( ) I wanted to keep it as kid friendly and easy to assemble/disassemble as possible. Next year he will be more "into" the lights, etc so I'm sure we will have fun!

As usual, I didn't do much outdoors except hang my handmade wreath on the door. Once inside, our foyer really gets into the Christmas spirit.

William's handprint tree and our Christmas Traditions book - DIY post on Tuesday!

This lovely painting was made for me by a dear friend

In our living room we of course have our tree and also our stockings hung along the staircase with red ribbon since we do not have a mantle.

I kept things really simple this year and used a Christmas plaid tablecloth, the same runner I used in 2010 and put out different glass votives I have. I also added a gingerbread house that my friends and I made in the middle.

I really decorated a little at a time this year and like how everything looks, but wish everyone at our house wasn't sick so we could have more Christmas fun!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Holiday Craft #2: Shabby & Chic Wreath

I finally got around to making a wreath!! I had purchased a wire wreath form some time ago, but hadn't made it a priority to actually do something with it…until now! As if I don't have enough Christmas decorations, I decided to use scraps of Christmas fabric from last year and turn it into a festive wreath. Try this for a pretty simple Christmas DIY decoration.

The fabric I used was: solid dark green, a white backed full of holiday phrases, lime and red stripe (used the most), a green, white and red snowflake, and a red fabric with holiday candy all over it.

I cut strips of fabric out of all the scraps I had. The strips were about 1.5 inches by 7 inches. Then, I just folded each strip in half, looped it around the metal, pulled the double end through the loop and pulled it tight!

To be honest, I have no idea how much fabric I used, but I think it ended up being about 225 strips. Since I didn't know if I would have enough or not and I wanted a random look, I made sure to rotate the wreath form and placement of the fabric as I was making it.

This was a nice and clean project, all you have to do is cut fabric, and I even did it during playtime. I hope you find some time to make your own wreath!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Holiday Craft #1: Handprint Tree

I have decided to make December craft month at Enjoy Life & Love because I already have some cute and festive ideas up my sleeve. I will share at least one holiday craft project per week. There are two children's projects, a fabric-related home decor project and a paper craft. So please make sure to come back each week (I'm going to try and post on Tuesdays) and get some ideas, share your ideas, and let me know what you think!

This week's craft was made with my favorite sidekick: William. This is not the first or the last time his Momma will be dipping his hands in paint for the sake of craftiness, but soon he will not mind! I will admit that I found this idea on Pinterest, it is not an original idea of mine.

I purchased a 9x12 canvas at Michael's on Thanksgiving night when I decided I wasn't ready for bed and not in the mood to watch football. All stretched canvas was 50% off and then I had a 30% off total purchase coupon which made everything an even better deal. I also purchased dark green paint since I already had the other colors at home.

I buckled the little guy into his high chair,

painted his right hand with green paint and then did my best to get a fingers spread flat handprint

….six times!

I added details later -- the red edges, brown metallic tree trunk and gold star. I love it!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Eight Glorious Months

Earlier this week our boy turned eight months old.

Every month I keep thinking "where has the time gone?" and the echo of mother's everywhere is that I will feel this way his whole life. Yesterday he rode in the kid's car cart at Harris Teeter and just kept steering away. Yes, I nearly cried because I couldn't believe it. Oh and it will make grocery shopping easier for both of us ;).

William has decided to start the "real" crawl after army crawling for three months. The benefit to this is that I can hear his hands and knees hitting the floor so I have a better idea where he is if my back is turned, which it really can't be. Yesterday I was just mixing a bottle and he was behind me and next thing I know he has quietly crawled over to and climbed up three stairs (Daddy was spotting him in this photo don't worry). Talk about startling! He is just very curious, so we bought two of those Superyard gates off Craigslist because we literally cannot do anything in a different room or even the opposite end of a room without saying "no" and we don't want to do that all the time. Plus, not too sure how inticing the Christmas tree will be when we put it up this weekend. He is cruising along, taking steps here and there while holding on and really likes balancing and holding onto furniture with only one hand.

The little guy has two bottom teeth, no sign of more yet. This past weekend Daddy taught him how to roll his R's like he is speaking Spanish and he does it all the time and then laughs at himself. He is definitely a Momma's boy and gave my friend a run for her money when she watched him and he screamed for Mom for about 90 minutes until he finally fell asleep.

As I write this, he is playing with a new tower of DVDs, rolling it on the floor and flipping it over. He makes everything into a toy which is awesome, I hope that means his imagination will run wild as he grows.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Reflecting on the 90s

You may have already seen this short piece circulating on Facebook, but it had me laughing so hard because of the truth behind it and the fact that I can completely relate that I had to share. The link to the original post is at the bottom, my notes about each bullet are in purple italics :)

While most things we experienced as tots in that headiest of eras seems pretty self-explanatory (plaid was everywhere, Leonardo DiCaprio was the molten ball of light around which the solar system turned, and there was no color too bright for your sweatpants) there are some things that will be a bit harder to explain. Here, a primer for when your future children want to know what the hell you were doing with your boxy, multicolored electronics. - First I liked JTT (Jonathan Taylor Thomas in case you weren't living on planet Earth), then Devon Sawa and then Leo - no last name needed after 1997 and Titanic.

NOV. 23, 2011 

1. Topanga was at some point in human history considered not only a legitimate first name for a human being, but the kind of name that would inspire in malleable teenage boys a life-long infatuation. Topanga, in our day, was leading lady name-material. Topanga (pronounced Tah-payne-ga, for those who will have only ever seen in it written down) is the name of the quintessential girl-next-door who will live, along with Feeney, in our hearts forever. - Boy Meets World was an awesome TV show and part of the ABC Family lineup. Danielle Fishel (aka Topanga) really hasn't done anything noteworthy since, except I think she has a little gig on Comedy Central on a Talk Soup-like program. Like I said, not noteworthy.

2. At some point, we carried around little plastic eggs with tiny screens on them — in these screens lived our hearts, our pets, our raison d’etre, our very own Tamagotchi. We loved them, we listened to their tiny electronic screams of malnourishment, and we occasionally forgot to pick up their poop for long enough that they died a tortured, poop-filled death. They were perhaps our first foray into the life-consuming world of electronics and self-absorption, later to be fully manifested by Facebook. - I had a few Tomagotchis, plus the cheaper versions. Like beepers and cell phones were banned in schools, so were Tomagotchis. Apparently the beeping was enough of a distraction. My trick was resetting it from the tiny button in the back whenever I was a bad owner.

3. The black Power Ranger was black and the yellow Power Ranger was Asian because…we were so completely ahead of our time and beyond the capacity to even think in terms of something as inconsequential as race that… uh… I don’t know. Casting directors were racist in the nineties. - Oh an the pink Power Ranger was a girl, Kimberly in the original. And I think the red ranger was Jason. Hey, I have a younger brother.

4. Long before he was spending his days foisting his mediocre children on us, Will Smith was actually the perfect human specimen. He also undoubtedly holds some world record for saving the world the most times while simultaneously delivering flawless catchphrases and giving cool guy nods to the camera. The Men In Black rap song, at the time, was created and received by the public without the slightest trace of irony. Really. He was that good. - Men in Black was the first movie I saw in theaters with a boy in the sixth grade. In 7th or 8th grade he came out with his CD that had the song Miami on it and my friend and I listened to it all summer. Oh boy...

5. In some inevitable shift of the time-space continuum in which James Cameron continues to rob humanity of all that is good and sacred in this world, Fern Gully will be known as that movie that ripped off Avatar. It will be up to us to crusade for what is right. It is up to us to explain that Fern Gully was not only a predecessor to Avatar, but far better, in that it contained both Tim Curry as a singing pile of molasses and Robin Williams rapping about animal testing in the pharmaceutical industry. (As a side note, if you have not recently listened to the full lyrics of the “Batty Rap,” I recommend you do, as they are horrifying.) - I never saw either of these movies. All I think of when I hear James Cameron is Titanic!

6. A neighborhood boy who completely disregards your family and puts a ladder directly under the teenage girl’s window to climb up at his discretion is not only acceptable, it’s charming. It’s the kind of stuff that would make said family take the ladder boy under their wing and into their heart. The nineties were a simpler time, one where we didn’t have to worry about things like breaking and entering. Clarissa today would have steel bars on the inside of her window and her father would continually remind her that the next-door boy with his ladder and his touchy hands have no place in his household. - Oh Nickelodeon, how I miss thee. One of my favorite parts of Clarissa Explains it All was the intro credits where she would paint her name and it would be a little different each time.

7. Though on the surface, they are the exact same thing in every conceivable way, whether you liked The Backstreet Boys or N*SYNC said more about your character than all of the terrible macaroni art you could ever make for your child psychologist. Essentially, liking *NSYNC meant you liked Justin Timberlake, as he was clearly the Seabiscuit in that race from the get-go. You even liked him with his terrible, icy-blond mini-fro. Liking the Backstreet Boys gave you a bit more of a cultured palate, as there was no clear Diana in those Supremes. Nick was kind of the wholesome, if northern-Florida-redneck safe choice (save for his humiliating younger brother, Aaron). Brian was the shy, sensitive type. AJ was the hottt, dangerous meth addict. Kevin Richardson was mute with sexy, sculpted facial hair. No one liked Howie. Choosing between the two groups was like choosing between two beloved children, but once that line was crossed–there was no going back. - I was an N'Sync girl through and through. In the 90s I also liked New Kids on the Block (Jordan Knight was my favorite) but it evolved into N'Sync. I know a few of the dances from the music videos…oh wait, we probably have to explain music videos too since TRL doesn't exist anymore since MTV only runs reality shows.

8. “I wanna really really really wanna zig a zig ahh,” has a meaning, and all true nineties kids know it, but we must never share it. Like the Illuminati, it must remain between us, the keyholders. With great power comes great responsibility. - I went to a Spice Girls concert and somehow my mother let me "dress" like Emma aka Baby Spice. Enough said.

9. Lisa Frank is not the name of a woman, it is the name of a movement, a culture, a way of living. It is a theory, a concept, a belief in something greater than yourself. It is the belief that all girls are entitled to dolphins covered with rainbows, jewel-encrusted frogs, and unicorns in acid-trip colors hugging each other. It is the ideology that no notebook is complete until it literally hurts your eyes to look at from so much color saturation. It is the hope that no school supply, no matter how insignificant, will be left un-bedazzled. It is the knowledge that your eraser cap, and that of your granddaughter’s, and her granddaughter’s after her, will not be some boring little nub–it will be a diamond covered with butterflies in a rainbow of colors. It is the dream of a better tomorrow. - My Lisa Frank binder with a horse on it and folders with lipstick rocked.

10. Incredibly depressing women in Indiana covered in cats and glass figurines they buy at The Hallmark Store used to troll the web 1.0 to invest thousands of dollars in tiny stuffed animals filled with plastic beans. That happened. Beanie Babies were not just significant, they were the first example most of us had of envy, greed, and wrath. If someone messed up that little heart-shaped Ty tag, so help you God, that was the end of whatever contact you had with that monster of a human being. That tag-less Beanie Baby was now trash, and you had to deal with the consequence. It was at that moment, that de-valued Beanie Baby moment, that most of us accepted the truth… we’ll never have nice things. - If you don't have the tag intact, don't even bother! We used to get the new beanie babies at a place in town, a florist actually, The Growth Company. It was like a race to get there every few days to see the new shipment and they put a limit on the number each customer could purchase. I know my mom still has them since she keeps everything. I would be happy to put them on eBay or Craigslist and get rid of them!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Cyber Monday - Did You Buy Anything?

Hello World - today is Cyber Monday, as if you didn't already know! I went ahead and purchased our personalized stockings from Pottery Barn (be on the lookout for them in a future post) and the last of William's Christmas presents:
Baby Einstein OctoPlush


Band in a Box

Yesterday at Costco my husband found a toy William "had" to have so we bought that and it will be his big (cost and size) gift. I'm proud to say that I did stay under my $100 limit for him. I know that may still be alot for an 8 month old baby, but considering I have only purchased one real toy for him (his music table back in August), I don't feel bad. He might be getting bored with the same toys anyway, right? Haha, maybe not.

Just don't tell him what he will be opening Christmas morning!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thankful for my little Turkey

I think it is obvious what, or rather whom, I am most thankful for this year:

Isn't his onesie precious??

I had to show off his latest feats..standing up everywhere, even without something to grab onto

Scooching fast enough that I can't stop him before he dumps out the cat's water to play in it

And silently climbing up on the dishwasher while I was out of the room for literally 2 minutes

Last Thanksgiving I talk about some other people I am thankful for. I think my gratitude for my husband has grown over the past year too because he works so tirelessly so I can be William's full-time caregiver. That is the best "gift" that he or anyone else could ever give me.

The role of my friends have also taken on a new meaning. I will admit, I have a handful of good friends and they are invaluable to me. You know, the kind that send you cards to cheer you up, say they are proud of the mother you have become, share mommy secrets, help take care of your baby and send you flowers for no reason (you know who you are!). 

I also have some "new" friends this year -- my mommy friends. Over the past few months they have become more than mom's of William's friends, I am proud to say they have become my friends too (regardless of the babies). We get together weekly to have adult time and lend out cribs for naps, toys, provide food, laughs and even share Sophie's!

The afternoon we went apple picking (or at least tried)

A few different things I am thankful for since I have become a new mom? Silence! Time to myself! Good food, especially when I can enjoy it slowly and don't have to shovel it in my mouth.

I hope you enjoy your day(s) with family…I know you all deserve it :)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Way Behind

Hello to my trusty followers! Sorry I have been so behind in posting lately, but life has caught up to me, ran ahead and now I am trying to catch up with it!

I have several recipes to blog about and am sad that I never did the fall home tour as I am now starting to put away my fall decor and pull out Christmas…I can't believe it. So thanks for hanging on for the ride, and I'll be back soon.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Natural Autumnal Porch

This year I decided to make our front porch decorations stand out more than last year. I used the same vintage wood box, but did this instead:

Set the box on a large bale of straw and used it as a "pot" for a large chrysanthemum. I need to be better about remembering to water my flowers because the color has changed over a few weeks time since I'm a bit forgetful.

When my friend Emily was in town we added some gords and cut dried hydrangea from our bushes on the side of the house.

We also picked up our three pumpkins, two white and one green, to the steps. But, when I found this antique wash stand on the side of the road, I made the most of it and used it to add height to the other side of the front door. Now it is home to William's monogrammed pumpkin, two other pumpkins and some hydrangea.

I love it!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Time Out Tuesday: 1st tooth!

William's first tooth has come in! Actually, since I am a bit behind on the posts, he has cut his second tooth too, within three weeks of each other. This picture was taken midway through the arrival of #1, he already wanted to start practicing good dental hygiene :).