Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Not Allowed

So I've been starting to do some online research on the nursery front. With the little nugget's expected arrival in a mere six months, I've got to get started soon, right? [grin]

Who's surprised?

One fun idea/trend that I see on flickr, Project Nursery, and HGTV.com all the time is incorporating a simple wall decal into the design.

I mean, how cute are these?

(both images from projectnursery.com)


Not surprisingly, there are oodles of designs to choose from. Birds. Flowers. Stars. Sports themes. And on and on. We'd both like the overall nursery "look" to be modern and simple and slightly whimsical. For the decal/wall art, I came up with idea of a dandelion.

It's sweet. I love the little round puff, and the seeds floating away in a graceful little arc. It reminds me somehow of dreams and wishes and and fresh air. I envisioned it very subdued, just giving some extra interest to one of the walls. Something like this, but in white and in a nursery setting:

(photo courtesy of flickr & aijographics.com)

Well then, my friends, I hit a road block. My husband.

You see, he works for a company that sells lawn and garden products. They have a number of different product lines, including grass seed, bird food, insect killer (it probably has a more professional name than that, but I don't know it), dirt (aka "growing media"), and fertilizer. Josh works specifically on the "lawns" team there.

And what, do you think, is the #1 most hated lawn problem?

Um yes. It's weeds.

Like dandelions.

They're particularly troublesome to lawn-loving folks everywhere.

And Josh refuses to include them in the decor of our baby's room.


Sunday, April 25, 2010


I'm a mature(ish), married, 26-year-old professional with a baby on the way. I'm a homeowner (together with Josh, obviously) who regularly works in the yard and tries to keep on top of the laundry.

And yet, I get a rush of 7-year-old excitement when I think of where I'm headed in just 11 days:

Walt Disney World

I love Disney. For me, there's something really special about that place. Fairy dust. Cinderella's castle. Mickey Mouse ears (which I'll be sorely tempted by, I'm sure).

I've been there several times, but each time is still exciting. I remember being truly spooked by the Haunted Mansion, feeling very brave for riding Space Mountain for the first time, and enjoying a massive turkey leg. I still recall joy of meeting the "real" Minnie Mouse, the rush of excitement (and water) on Splash Mountain, and delighted anticipation of riding the monorail toward the Magic Kingdom.

And then there was the time by brother cracked his head open at the campground, and the time I had an all out cat fight I had with my cousin Erin. There was pulling of hair and the scratching of faces - and at age 16. To this day, neither of us has any idea about what started the fight. Ah, the memories.

Most of all, I remember just being enthralled with it all each and every time.

And now I get to go again - with people who have never been before. It'll be even more fun experiencing it through their fresh eyes.

My mom and I are going with Montoya, Aiyannah, and Aiydan in a couple of weeks. We're going to be staying at Fort Wilderness, the Disney campground, and spending a fun-packed long weekend exploring the parks.

Aiyannah, who's 7, can hardly sleep at night, she's so excited. And I'm sure she just has no idea how very special it will be.

I know just how special Disney is, but still, I can hardly wait either.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


It was approximately 8 minutes after I informed Josh of this news that the wheels started turning in his head...

We won't be traveling to Russia this year...

We have a bit of a budget breather since the adoption is on hold...

We don't need to save up vacation time for the adoption...

So what does this add up to?

Oh yes, another trip to Europe.

When Josh proposed the idea the next day I wasn't immediately on board. Basically, I just didn't want a repeat performance of this (in my second trimester of a pregnancy):

Europe 2000

No backpacks. No hauling stuff from one town to the next. When Josh vacations in new places, he likes to GO GO GO and SEE SEE SEE as much as possible. It made me tired just to think about it.

So we compromised. And we're scheduled to take a 7 night Baltic cruise out of Oslo, Norway in early June. We'll stop in Copenhagen, Tallin, and St. Petersburg, I think.

The "pros" of the cruise idea are these:

1. Our stuff stays put.
2. We don't need to hop from trains to buses to flights to cabs to get around.
3. This particular one is much, much cheaper than getting 7 nights of hotel rooms (not to mention food)
4. There are a few "at sea" days where I'll be able to lay about on the deck wearing a boat-sized bathing suit.
5. Did I mention NOT having to schlep my crap from one city to the next?
6. We'll get to see a variety of places.

Do people our age take Baltic cruises? I don't even know. We just might be the youngest people there by a long shot. But we're fine with that!

Should be fun.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Our Babies

First, we've got Riley. Our "little brownie." Our sweet, spoiled, snuggly little dog. We got him from a shelter when we first moved to Bloomington, IN back in July 2007. He's been a much-adored member of the family ever since.


Second, there's baby B. The child we'd love to adopt someday. We don't know much about him or her, and pray that the Lord brings this child home in His time.

Baby B 2

And then...

We found out a few weeks ago that there is a third baby.


A baby of the "homegrown" variety, who will hopefully make his or her debut in early November.

We're thrilled, and so very thankful for this little one. We feel immeasurably blessed to be expecting a biological child. We're humbled by God's goodness and graciousness to us, and we know that this child is a gift straight from Him.

I know what you're thinking: So what does this mean for the adoption?

It's been put on hold.

Depending on the timing of it all, we'd either need to travel with me very pregnant, or else travel with an infant, or else leave an infant at home for the better part of a month. None of these were appealing options. Furthermore, both infants and newly adopted children need all kinds of special care, especially right at first. We'd like to be able to provide that to the best of our abilities, and feel that it will be in the best interest of both kids to space things out a bit.

In the future, we'd still love to adopt. The idea has always been in our hearts, since the very beginning of our relationship, and we still plan to grow our family through both biological and adoptive means.

I feel strongly that we were meant to start down the "path" toward adopting a child. But now we find ourselves on a different path. In any case I know that our lives, family, and future rest in the palms of His loving, generous hands.

Proverbs 3:5-6 come to mind...

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;

in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight.

For me, there's such comfort in those words. For both joyful and uncertain times, peaceful moments and difficult ones. The Lord is deserving of trust, and guides our paths.

And now, we just praise Him for this unexpected and extremely welcome gift.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Never in my whole life...

...have I worked in the yard as much as I did this past weekend.

I've never been a yard work kind of girl, and Josh has never been a yard work kind of guy. Not really our thing.

But now we have this house. That sits on almost half an acre. Which, until Saturday, had overgrown, ugly, 25-year-old landscaping. And a tall dead tree in the back yard. My biggest pet peeve, however, was a super big, square bush on one side of our driveway. To park near it meant that you couldn't open the car door. Ugh.

Not being yard work people, we knew we needed help to tackle the beast. Enter my parents. My dad worked in landscaping when he was younger, and has a particular "know how" for just our kind of endeavor. You should see him with a rake! Or a shovel! And my mom is always up for a project. They graciously agreed to help us over the weekend.

We dug.
We snapped roots.
We tugged at bushes.
We tugged from different angles.
We cut down scraggly branches.
We made a big heap of yard crap out front.



The dogs (the black one, Chloe, belongs to my parents) sat in the dirt and offered moral support.


And then our super helpful neighbor stopped by with a chainsaw and did all kinds of projects for us - including chopping down our dead backyard tree.

Naturally, we collected the largest pile of yard waste the neighborhood has ever seen.

It took two trips in the rented Lowe's truck to haul it all away.

And the truck was loaded up big time with each trip. And tied down with clothesline.

The fun part came on Sunday afternoon - plant shopping! I've never found nurseries to be remotely interesting until now. The options! The colors! The flowers! The bushes!



(Squint and imagine we've seeded the dirt and grass has grown in):

We're hopeful that our bushes and flowers will grow up with a little TLC. Especially considering that the former landscaping was wildly overgrown, everything looks a bit dinky. But that will change with time - AND some extra flowers added in here and there.

Remember this tree?


It's gone!

We're planning to put a new cute tree there.

And that big a** bush conglomerate I hated?

Gone, too!

(Imagine it with grass. It helps.)

Our yard smells all kinds of wonderful - due to the pine bark mulch.

AND now we even have some azaleas in bloom!

Thank you Mom and Dad! We appreciated your help!

And maybe you've helped me discover a green thumb after all. Time will tell. I just hope we don't kill everything in the first couple of months.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Basket Works Giveaway - Winner and Special Discount

The moment you've all been waiting for! The latest bloggy giveaway has come to a close.

A $75 gift basket from Basket Works goes to:

#18: ~Ginger! (Ginger, I'll email you with the details.)

ALSO, Basket Works is offering a discount to this blog's readers! If you place an order in the month of April 2010 and mention this blog, you can get a 10% discount on your order! Happy shopping!