Tuesday, March 22, 2011



My very own, very first daffodil.  Love. It.

Also, I told Caleb to look out for buds and explained that there were flowers inside that would be coming out soon.  He still looked confused, so I said, “It’s like when Baby James was in my tummy and my tummy got big, and then he came out.  Soon, these buds will open up and the flowers will come out.”  Now, Caleb looks forward to all the “baby flowers being born.”


Being a homeowner is everything we had hoped it would be.  We LOVE it.  We work on the house every week, it seems, to make it our own, but we don’t really even mind the work and take pride in it being ours.  We have made quite a lot of changes so far.  We have painted the guest room, kitchen, family room, dining room, living room, entry way, stairs, upstairs hall and Caleb’s room since moving in.  We still need to paint a downstairs hall and the master bed/bath.  We’ve replaced the garbage disposal, kitchen faucet and fixed the kitchen pipes so they don’t leak (where was the inspection guy on THIS?!).  We’ve cut down a hideous and dead tree that scraped against our family room window and pulled out the weedy front walkway plants and instead planted rosebushes.  We’ve acquired and refinished an ancient piano (deserving of its own post).  We’ve painted all the baseboards and trim in all the above mentioned rooms as well.  We’ve had the torsion springs in the garage door replaced and changed bulbs and batteries throughout the house and mowed and raked many hours. And with each little thing, the house is a little more ours.  It’s a little less the Melons’ house (names have been changed to protect the guilty of home neglect) and a little more ours with every time we actually take the outlet covers off to paint instead of paint the outlet covers to the wall (as the aforementioned owners may or may not have done).  Or actually deal with the tree shoots growing in the back yard rather than just mow over them.  GRRRR!  In any case, we love our house.  We love having a house.  We love getting to make it our own.  It’s lively, it’s different and we like it that way.  We have plenty of changes that still need made, but here are some ideas for you, of our house.  And don’t worry, I didn’t clean up just for the sake of photos.  You’re getting to see our house as it really is. SmileDSC00124BEFORE

This is what the “Melons” house looked like with its kooky rug and over the mantle paintings… not to mention wires poking up out of the floor…


Note: the sunflower yellow walls.  Previously, the walls were yellow, but the same way that lemonade is yellow—only just.  If you’re going to paint your walls yellow, paint them YELLOW!  We love the gold glow that fills this room when the light pours in. We plan to get a large family photo to go above the mantel this spring when the blossoms are out.  This is our family room—complete with children’s books and a laundry basket on the floor. Smile


These pictures were taken last September.  They include our furniture (pre-piano), but former paint and window hangings.  I was also in the middle of a sewing project.  Why was I compelled to take pictures at this time?  I have no idea.


This is what the space looks like today.  We LOVE the green in this room.  Delightful, sophisticated, soothing.


This is a before picture of the entryway/stairs.  Again, our furnishings—their paint.



Here it is with the gray and white trim rather than the original oak trim.  We will be adding a server to go underneath the huge poppies picture as an entry way console table soon.


And, what the heck, here is the piano—which is its own before and after picture.  The piano is the AFTER picture; the bench is the BEFORE picture.  I’ll give you a few close-ups of the bench so you can see where we came from.


This piano had 5 layers of old paint and stain that needed to be removed to get back to the original mahogany wood that it is.  At one point, this piano was baby blue.  Please do not ask me why someone would paint a piano baby blue.  My only answer would have to be excessive drug use.  It took a couple of months, several containers of CitriStrip, more than one package of steel wool, heaps and heaps of goop that came off the piano after using the CitriStrip, mineral spirits, a new stain and varnish, an electric sander and a LOT of elbow grease to take this piano form looking like the bench, to looking like this:


I love it and while it does still need to be tuned, I have actually written a song on it.  My first since I was 13-14 years old. You can expect another one when I’m 40. Smile  More about this later.

So, that’s life.  I spend it doing laundry, cooking, cleaning, feeding kiddos, playing trains, doing projects on the house, and all those other mommy-ing things we all do!

Caleb Bug

Caleb is smart as a whip.  This kid NEVER ceases to amaze me with the insights he comes up with, his intuitive understanding of things and his MEMORY.  Good heavens, his memory.  Now, I’m his mom, I appreciate this, but the kid is bright.  I try to explain things to him in a pure and real way, but also accepting the fact he is three.  I try to explain things in ways he’ll understand.  Last week in our Scripture study, we were reading in 1 Nephi of the Book of Mormon where it discusses how Christ will take away our sins.  I was explaining this to Caleb.  “So Caleb, when we do naughty, unrighteous things, when we make big mistakes, Jesus can take those away and help us feel better.  You know how we feel bad when we make big mistakes?  He helps us not feel bad anymore.” 

At this point, Caleb has a pouty look on his face and says, “Sometimes I make big mistakes, Mommy.  Like when I go pee in my underpants.  That’s a big mistake.”

My heart is already breaking at this point when I say, “Well, Caleb, we all make big mistakes sometimes.  I make mistakes all the time and I have to ask the Lord to forgive me.”

Caleb: “Do you go pee in your underpants too?” Smile

What a reminder that we are to be as little children.  It would sure be more obvious to the world what my BIG MISTAKES were if they showed up on my pants.  Here he is, his “biggest mistakes” wetting his pants while I am proud, judgmental, pessimistic, unforgiving, slothful and hypocritical (not all at once and not all the time, mind, but still—all weaknesses I struggle with).  While being a mother to Caleb is still tough, he is a bright spot in my life.



Where do nicknames come from?  Sometimes there is a reason, other times, none at all.  BUT, our little man James has changed so much since the last time I really posted any pictures of him, I figured it was high time.  Meet Mr. Fat and Happy.DSC01432

James is a doll.  Regularly, he will just laugh, for no apparent reason at all.  Often he laughs because his big brother pays attention to him, which is, of course, his very most favorite thing.  DSC01416

You can see the adoration on his face in this photo.  James LOVES his big brother.


James is an excellent little crawler these days and LOVES the warmer drawer of our oven.  He hopped in all by himself.  Sylvia Plath has nothing on him when it comes to time spent in the oven.


I love this happy little guy.