Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Her hands look like mine.

I put the girls down for a nap the other day & got a few things finished up before I took a quick snooze. Zoe always takes a nap in our room & Aris has started to also. It's fun for them, like a giant slumber party in our bedroom. As I lay down beside my little Zoe I looked at her sweet sleeping face. I just stared at her for a few moments and watched her breath. I marveled at how quickly she is growing and tried to figure out who she looks like the most. Then I looked at her hand & realized I do the same exact thing with my hand. Her sweet little meaty hands balled into a fist while she sleeps. Oh how I love those little hands. How I love my little girl.

Somebunny Won!

It was me!

How adorable is that bunny? Very! I have been following Swirly Designs Blog for quite awhile now & I adore their innocent & whimsical designs. You can find their blog ::here::
Swirly designs is made up of the husband and wife team Lianne & Paul Stoddard. The couple met while attending art school. Each of their ornaments is sculpted & painted by hand. I love the fact that they are not only talented artists but have two cute little children too. It inspires me to know that not only do they run a successful art business but they are parents as well. It inspires me to keep on working at all the art goals I have.
Thank you so much Lianne & Paul! I can't wait to display your beautiful ornament in our home for many springs to come.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Reading With Grandpa

Is the Best!

Aris just found these board books from Japan that I had bought a while back at a thrift store. Erik made up a story for each of them since none of us can read Japanese. He was so animated and Dean & I just giggled. She never sits and listens to books for very long. I think she just adores her grandpa ;)

We are having a wonderful weekend with family. I am hoping to take a ton of pictures today. Didn't get many yesterday because we looked at houses almost all morning & afternoon. We went out for a yummy lunch at Red Robin & ended the day with a dinner of grilled tri tip, homemade mashed potatoes, oven roasted asparagus, & corn. Finished off the night with a homemade apple pie & some Bryers ice cream. Really and truly it was a yummy day ;)

Why did we look at so many homes? Well, we wanted Cindy & Erik to have a good idea of what there was offered in our area. At the end of the day they felt really good about the home we are hoping to get. We all do. Today we are going to go look at the house one more time. We should know by the end of the week a little more about when & if the home will be ours. I'm still praying that if it's the right home for us all will go through.

Hope you all are having a great & yummy weekend too!

Friday, March 26, 2010

San Diego or A Much Needed Break

Dean worked almost the whole time we were down in San Diego. He still tried to make it home before dinner every night. I love this picture of him & Zoe. She is still such a daddies girl. Can you tell?

Little Miss Merris waiting for the fried chicken to finish cooking. I'm so sad I didn't get more pictures while we were visiting. Cindy & Eric have an amazing group of friends that are more like an extended family. Allen is one of those wonderful friends. He and his sweet wife came over and showed us all how to make fried chicken. I won't be making it very often due to the yummy/unhealthy factor, however it is so nice to finally know how to make it. Boy was it delicious! I adore Allen & his wife. Thanks Allen for sharing your mad kitchen skills!

I had some major food cravings that I needed to pamper (yes we ate a lot of yumminess on this trip) What trip would be complete without a visit to ::here:: Seriously yummy food & a fun atmosphere.

More daddy time

Sloan with Grandma Cindy

These last three photos are of the girls making fruit salad with grandma. Sloan said she wanted to make breakfast for dinner the last night we were there & Cindy gladly went and got all the ingredients from the store. She is so good to my girls. They love there Grandma Cindy sooo much. We all do ;)

Only wish we could have stayed a little longer. We had to cut our trip short so Dean could come home and get back to work here in town. I'm not complaining though. We are grateful he has work & he takes it wherever it presents itself. We have been very blessed. The other thing that made leaving not quite as hard this time is the fact that Deans mom & dad are heading our way tonight for the weekend. I'm so excited! I really miss not having family close by. The girls do too. Cindy & Eric are coming to see the house we put an offer on & to see some of the other properties we have looked at. I'm sure there will be lots of photos taken & yes, more yummy food eaten. What can I say its just that time in my life where I'm allowing my craving to rule ;)

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend. Hugs to you all!

Paint With Me Thursday


Just got back from Sunny San Diego & needless to say it will take me a few days to get back into the swing of things. I did however make time to sketch while I was down there. Felt good to doodle just for the heck of it. Doodles don't have to be perfect or finished. I enjoyed just goofing around. I also worked on next months card while catching up on Chuck episodes with Dean. Hopefully next week I can actually post on Thursday night & not Friday morning ;)

You can find more fun doodles ::here::

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Paint With Me Thursday

Hooray! I made it!

Last night I worked on my next card for ::here::

A sneak peek at some of the possible color choices

I have been so tired with this pregnancy. After a day of cleaning up the house (a never ending battle around here) & then getting the kids into bed I am ready to go to bed myself. I'm glad to have this challenge to be a part of. A good friend of mine is an amazing artist. He commented on Facebook yesterday how he had gone to work all day long & a list of other things he worked on in the afternoon at home with his family. At the end of his status update he said how he was heading to his studio to work on art. It gave me that jolt of creative energy I needed. I sometimes forget I'm not the only parent/artist who works and helps out all day only to find myself ready to sleep at the end of the day. Surrounding myself with other creative people is a huge motivator. His little reminder gave me the nudge I needed to get something accomplished. I should be self motivated however sometimes I think it's okay to gather that extra bit of creative energy from other until you are back in the game again.

Although I won't be able to show you the finished card until next month, I take comfort in the fact that I worked on art last night. Can't wait to work on the card tonight. Look forward to seeing what everyone else has done for their

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Our new home?

We got the call today that the bank counter offered & we counter offered back. They accepted our counter offer!!!!!! Now we are waiting for the next step in this process. It should take about 10 days. The bank will have to sign a whole bunch of papers and then make sure their are no liens on the property. If everything checks out okay we can move on to the next step, the inspection. It's not officially our home but the whole process is moving in the right direction from what our agent tells me. I am so very excited.

I will show more photos once we know for sure but I thought I'd give you an idea of how cute this home is. Yes it has a 3 car garage. That 4th garage that has been added on the the house has rocks for flooring. Dean already told me that if we get the house he will pour a concrete floor in there, insulate and add drywall, texture & paint,
The garage is as deep as the house. He also said he would frame in a small area at the front of the space so I could store all of my Rubbermaid containers of decorations & such. There is enough room for me to set up a space for sewing & painting & then some. I could work on projects and leave them unfinished for a day if I needed. I wouldn't have to worry about cleaning them up so we could eat at the dining room table. Nope just close a door & come back to it when able. I envision a whole lot of art getting accomplished in that little studio.

The 3 car garage is perfect for all of Deans tools & projects. He joked that all someone had to say is the house had a 3 car garage & he was sold....didn't matter what the rest of the house looked like ;) What guy doesn't want a large garage?

I'm so hopeful!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

27 weeks & Running out of Room

A big mess!

Have I mentioned we are running out of room? Bursting at the seams? That this new baby WILL be sleeping in a dresser drawer if we don't find a larger home very soon? If I seem redundant I apologize. I am so very excited that we have wonderful in laws whom are willing to help us get into a bigger home. The process of looking for said home has proven to be a bittersweet one. We have only been looking for a few months but the process has been a little frustrating. None of the houses we have looked at are really what we want. There is always something major that would need to be fixed or changed to make the house livable. Sometimes the houses are too small or in the wrong neighborhood. One home was really old, but huge and we could have made it work (with a good scrubbing and huge remodel). It looked like a good deal until Dean crawled under the house only to discover fire damage that had been covered up and repaired in a very shady way. That one was out of the question. We've put three offers on three different homes and two of the three have been rejected. The last one we haven't heard back on yet, however there are 54 other offers ahead of ours and it doesn't look promising.

Well last night we went and looked at a home & let me tell you it's perfect. It has all the things Dean & I both want in a home for our little growing family. I am trying not to get my hopes up on this one, but we put an offer in on the home this morning. This is the only home we walked through & neither of us mentioned::

major remodel
don't touch anything girls this house is disgusting
the bathroom will have to be remodeled before the children take a bath in it
this will need to be removed
this will need to be rewired......

Seriously the list goes on. None of those things were mentioned. In fact I could envision having parties on the back porch, and family dinners out in the cool summer night. I could see our kids enjoying the huge back yard & the garden Dean would plant as soon as we moved in. I saw just how perfectly our furniture would fit. I loved the new kitchen and the huge dinning room. The list goes on of positives for this home. Really in truly I'm very hopeful & praying that if this is the right home for us that we will be able to call it "our home" in the near future.

While I am on the topic of running out of room, I'm officially 27 weeks. Although I'm extremely excited about a home birth there is always a little fear of the unknown. My sister in law gave me this book for Christmas & I am so grateful she did. I find it very comforting to read. I love the many birth stories that are included. This will be my 4th birth and I really do feel I can trust my body to do what it needs to do when it comes to birth. Sloan was my longest & hardest birth. My water broke around 3pm and I delivered her sunny side up the next day around 11:15 in the morning. Zoe came really fast, 7 hours from start to finish. Aris came even faster, about 5 hours from start to finish. I am guessing this birth has a good chance of going even more quickly if history repeats itself. Dean's biggest fear is that the baby will come too quickly & he will have to deliver him. I am worried about the same thing. Dean is one of the toughest guys I know. He can crush his foot against a rock riding a dirt bike, ride 30 miles back to camp bloody & swollen & then wrap his foot and go to work the next day no problem. However the dude can't handle blood on anyone else. If the baby came before the midwife I would be delivering him myself & checking to make sure Dean hadn't hurt himself after passing out. My midwife assured me that she would be there as soon as I feel I'm in labor. I felt so relieved to know this. There will be no messing around this time. No cleaning the house until the contractions are super close together for this girl. Nope! Aris was delivered at 7cm dilated. I'm not taking any chances with this little guy, lol! Can you tell I'm getting excited about the big day even though its weeks away? So much going on right now. The unknown is both exciting & a little unnerving at times. Only time will tell how life takes it's course. We shall see!

Hope you all enjoy this beautiful Monday!

Newest Card

March's Card

You can download this card for ::free:: at Simply Sweet Marriage. You can also find other sweet things to add some spice to your marriage ;)

Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend. It was rainy and cold all day yesterday. Last night it snowed & although it's in the 30's here today the sun is shining. It almost feels like a cold spring day. Sunny days have been scarce around here lately so I am soaking it in.

Dean turned 33 yesterday. The girls are going to a dear friends home to play for a few hours so we go out for lunch today. I'm looking forward to some one on one time. We don't get to go out (kid free) very often so I'm sure it will be fun.

What are you doing this weekend?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Early Morning Painters

Mommy can I paint?

Is always met with such hesitation & joy.

Hesitation because I know just how much fun they will have making a mess, I mean art. They are both covered in paint. My bathroom sink is also.

Joy because they love it so much. Because I love the look of determination on their faces as they mix paint. I love the way their chubby little hands take such care in each brushstroke. I guess a little part of me hopes that one day they will love art just as much as I do. In the end it's worth it. Always is & always will be.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Thinking Ahead

Sketch for April's card

Thinking ahead has never been one of my strong suits when it comes to art. I think I have mentioned this on more than one occasion. I'm not very good with planning out an art project & making magic happen on time. I tend to wait until the last minute & then work furiously under pressure to get said project finished. There is almost always someone on the other side waiting patiently for the project to be completed. This whole process completely drives my husband nuts. He's somewhat of a planner when it comes to "projects". Let me tell you this part of art is no fun. It is something that haunts me. Daily. I'm not kidding here folks. If you saw the list of things I need to do on my art list you would run screaming into a wall, repeatedly. Ahhhhh!!!!!!

Then this sweet gal stopped by my blog and said hello the other day.

I'll be participating in ::this:: each week.

I realized the other day that I don't do any art for myself anymore. You know just for the joy of it all. For the heck of it! I am hoping that by participating in Feathers group I will find that "joy" again. If you are interested in this joining this group please go to the above link to find out all the details. You don't have to be an artist to join. Anyone is welcome. No matter what your artistic skill. I hope you'll join me in the fun. Just run on over and say hello.

P.S. Thank you Heidie for being so very patient with me :)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Looking Forward

The girls pretending

I'm looking forward to finishing up a long overdue project & our house being germ free. It seems as if the "germ family" has moved into our home and made itself comfortable. I'm ready to pull the welcome mat out from under them. Time to go you nasty little buggers. Besides, the welcome mat was never intended for you anyhow.

Looking forward to a family day spent at home tomorrow, but hopeful for the chance to go to church next week. We haven't been able to go in a while due to all this sickness in our home. I hate to be that mom at church. You know the one. She brings her kids even when they have snotty bugger faces and hacking rattly coughs. Meanwhile your sweet child has infected all the elderly people in the congregation. I just don't want to be "that" mom.

Looking forward to finding out if we got the house we put an offer on. It is HUGE! HUGE I tell you! It has 4 bedrooms & a mother-in-law suite, two car garage and a nice size lot. Dean & I are very hopeful for this one. The mother-in-law suite would become a new master bedroom with a family room/art space. Yes the space is that big. It is a mess inside. If I showed you pictures you might question our sanity & the reasons why we are so excited. Seriously though it has great bones, just needs a little TLC, oh & new flooring, & the popcorn ceilings to be scraped, & the bathrooms to be updated.....& the kitchen to be remodeled. No but it really has so much potential. Plus it even has a cute little chicken coop in the back yard. Dean said that was the deal maker (wink ;) We have been wanting to get a few chickens so it would be perfect for that endeavor. We shall see. I'm hopeful.

Looking forward to finishing up March's card. I'm always amazed at how patient people are with me and my lateness when it comes to art. I really need to work on timeliness. It isn't one of my strong suits.

Really looking forward to going to bed when I'm done with this post. Hopefully I can sleep & not wake up every 5 minutes feeling like I've been walking in the desert. I've been so thirsty lately.
Also having some crazy pregnancy dreams. Most are too strange an disturbing to share. Only because they seem so very real. I guess I should enjoy it while I can though. Pretty soon I'll be too sleep deprived to remember any of my dreams. I'll take what I can get. Crazy dreams and all.

What are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Be Still My Beating Heart

Sometimes my heart still skips a beat when I think of him

I get that ache in my heart when he's working far from home for a week or more. The same ache I get at the thought that had things not have happened the way they did::

a short marriage to a very dishonest person
a divorce
to embarrassed to come back to my hometown a failure
moving to Reno
the kindness of my aunt & uncle letting Sloan & I live with them for a few months
me getting a job as an assistant interior designer
in Incline Village up at Lake Tahoe
having a boss that loved me like a daughter
believed in me when I didn't believe in myself
introduced me to Vern who was the contractor for all our jobs
Dean was his right hand man
Vern set Dean up on a date with me without even asking him first
On our first date we all went to the Lake
we hopped from rock to rock
he offered his hand for one of the bigger jumps
I remember thinking as I took his hand that I could feel safe forever in those hands
& then I thought that was a little crazy

I can't imagine how empty my life would feel if we had never met. Our marriage isn't perfect but it's perfect for us. We have so much fun together as a couple & a family. I laugh every day because of him.

I know that Dean came into my life for a reason. I pray everyday & give thanks for him in my life. I love him, every part. I feel like the luckiest girl, that I am the one who gets to share my life with him. Sloan & I were talking the other day about how much her and Aris look alike. Sloans father & I , although friends, we never married. I told her that most people think Dean is her real dad. She resembles him. She told me something I will never forget, "Mom I think God knew, I think he knew that Dean would one day be my dad & that is why I look so much like him".

Sloan I know you are right.

With all my heart.


I'm 9 going on 19.......seriously.......

Here's what I'm up to these days

I love to sing & I'm learning to play the piano
I pack my own school lunch & calibrate my carbs
I try to help out when it's convenient ;)
I am strong willed
I have big dreams
I'm very expressive when reading
Favorite book right now is "Percey Jackson & the Olympians"
I just got my first training bras (this has been a huge deal, she feels so cool)
I am on a new insulin but wish I could get a pump
I hate having diabetes but I'm very brave about it anyway
I love to draw
I'm very concerned with fashion these days
I love my family
I miss my family that lives far away
I love to be hugged and have my back scratched


My favorite shirt right now

I love to be silly & make my family laugh

I am almost always smiling :)

A Little update on what I'm doing these days

Right now my favorite movie is Totoro
I love dancing
Helping daddy is one of my favorite things
I'm a daddy's girl
I have the cutest words for everyday things, like heartbeat is "heartbeep"
I love to be helpful around the house
I hate to help clean up
I bite my nails, but I'm trying to break this habit
I am a little budding artist
I love to try & read books
I say my own prayers all the time
I love primary & church
My feet are always cold so I love to wear socks
I'm a peacemaker


Oh how I love this little girl.

A little update on what I'm doing these days.

I wake up before anyone & cry for my cuppy
I love snuggles
I'm almost completely potty trained
I'm a mommas girl
I love to draw
play dough is my favorite
I like to swim like a mermaid every night when I'm in the tub
I love to "read" my board books
I love daddy to read to me
I can get undressed & put my clothes into the laundry all by myself
I have one volume & speed, loud & fast
I say my own prayers at night
My favorite thing to ask right now, Why?