a couple of quick things

First of all.

One of my favorite bloggers/scrapbookers/photographers, Becky Higgins, has been doing a  photo challenge for the past few weeks.  This week was minimalist shots, using white space.  I immediately thought of a photo I took of Reganne this past winter (for a photo class no less).

So I sent it in.  And it *won*!!  Check it out here.  Yeah for me!  

Second of all.

Crop Chocolate.  Ever heard of them?  If you're a scrapbooker or crafter, this is a great site.  Deep discounted products, offered one a time.  And the deal changes throughout the day.

Anyhow.  Awhile ago they had a call for *chocolatiers*.  So I signed up.  No real talent was really required;).   And today, I finally posted my project (deadline is tomorrow).  Used a super cute kit from Echo Park called A Walk in the Park.  [Pictures are from Chuck E. Cheese.]  

You can also check it (and others) out in the gallery.


lamp re-do

Took some of this

Applied it to this
($2.00 at the Salvation Army)

To get this

To go with this
(a $7 clearance at Target)

Helpful tip: tape up everything (like the entire cord) that you don't want sprayed. 

an enchanting tea party

the invites

the decorations

the cupcakes

the treats

the little sisters

the party

We had so much fun with this party!!  I just wish I had started planning it a little earlier...

Found 11 matching teacups and saucers, the *creamer* and *sugar jar* at the Salvation Army, 1/2 off.
Found a coordinating teapot (no lid though) at Goodwill.
Little sister's tea set, clearance toys from Target a while back.
Made the tissue pom poms myself from tissue paper and floral wire from the Dollar Store.
Had the Happy Birthday banner (a Pottery Barn clearance a couple years ago).
Pink plates, cups, poka-dot napkins and table clothes from Target.  
Had pink lemonade with fresh sliced lemons and flower shaped ice cubes (Dollar Store).
Served PB&J *tea sandwiches*, strawberries, grapes, pretzels, cheese cubes and olives.
Cherry chip cupcakes with cherry frosting and pearl beads (Wilson).
The black poka-dot paper cups from Michaels.
Party gifts were cotton candy, bubble gum, more candy and bubbles, later all packaged in a clear little bag.
15 girls total (11 big, 4 little).
Made bracelets and played outside.

Enjoyed the decorating and planning...didn't do so hot with the hosting...;) 
Good thing some moms volunteered to help.
And didn't get all the photos I wanted.
In fact, ran out of time to even take the table photos, so I set it all up a couple days later to get them.  That's why my flowers are a little wilted.

And thanks to Grandma Jean, who took Christian for the whole day.


and he's 5 months

What a joy this little Kellen kid is.
Loves to chew on his feet.  Loves to chew on anything really.
Still scooting around on his back.
Rolls both ways.
Enjoys playing on his tummy.  Unlike any of the others.
Loves to sleep on his tummy.
Still sleeping next to us.  In a pack'n'play.  Outgrew the cradle about 2 months ago.  The others slept in it for about 6 months...
And sleeps throughout the night about 4 times a week.  Otherwise gets up around 4-6ish for a feeding.
No solids yet.
Not too crazy about sitting in the walker thing, but will hang out in it for a bit.
Still adores his siblings.  Mostly.
Loves attention.

And I realize that I never posted his 4 months stats...so this is what he was at a month ago...15 pounds (45%) and 27 inches (90%).


Turned in his cradle. Back in July....
Chewing on his feet.
With my brother Garrett.  (Crawford, Co)
With Joe's brother B.J.  (Sheridan, Wy)
With Joe's dad, Grandpa Dave.  (Sheridan, Wy)
With Joe's mom, Grandma Jean, and his sisters.  Christian was throwing a fit on the floor next to them.


and now she's six

It's so hard to comprehend.
She's 6.

Seems like just yesterday she was this itty bitty baby.
And now.

Going to school.
Playing soccer.
Losing teeth (lost her first top tooth the day after her birthday).
Hassling her sister.
Loving her brothers.
Helping, sometimes, around the house.

And having birthday parties.
Yes, we threw her her first friend party.
More pictures to come.


our little visitor

So.  One Saturday I spent the entire day cleaning out our garage.
Yes.  It sounds like it should be a job for the man-of-the-house, but I'll be honest,
it was my mess.

And by the end of the day, I was wiped.
(I'm telling you, it was bad.)

But boy was I excited to see how clean it was.  I had even sprayed it all out with hose which left it a little, well, wet.  And then we got a nice big rain shower that night that beat down on our garage...

So when we came back home from church on Sunday just before noon, I left the garage door open to help it dry up and air out.

Seemed like a fine idea.

That is until the next morning.

It was about 7:30ish and I was dragging myself out of bed to help Marryn get ready for school.  Joey yells down that the trash truck was coming (Monday is trash day, but it usually doesn't come this early).  So I head out to my very freshly cleaned garage and find a ripped garbage bag (we usually only fill our trash half-way, but because of all the cleaning, I had filled it and when we took out our kitchen trash the night before, I just set it to the side as not to leave the trash can open {= smelly}).  But not thinking too much of it, I just gathered the trash and recycling and set it out.  

As I was walking back up our driveway, I then noticed our bag of potting soil all over.  And a bunch of boards that I had placed ever so neatly knocked over.  And what is that yellow stuff...?

Then it hit me.

Remember last night when I opened the door to throw out a diaper and I thought, hmmm, that smells funny...

And remember how around midnight I got up about three times checking on the kids, looking outside, flipping on porch lights because I kept *hearing* something...

Yep, we've got an animal.

So after taking Marryn to school, Joe came back and we started pulling things away from the walls.  It didn't take long before we found it.
Hiding under the steps that go into the house.

First thoughts.

So Joe gets on the phone.  Calls 3 different people. 
One says, racoons are dangerous.  Keep the kids away.  We'll call you back when we can come.
Another, after mentioning the black and white fur we can now see peeking out, says skunk.

He was right. 

And he was the first to arrive.
An hour later.

So Joe spent the morning in the garage, keeping watch over our little visitor.

When the *animal remover* came, he sprayed some stuff to knock it out and then picked it up and away they went.  Along with a check for $55. 

So no, that little guy is not dead.
Although Joey wished it was.  
And people think he's a vegan because he loves animals...ha!

But before he left, we brought Reganne and Christian out and took some pictures.
Most likely the closest we will ever be to a skunk.
We hope.

And the smell, no it didn't spray.  Just peed and pooped all under our stairs.  So gross.

But it's all clean and sanitary now, thanks to another day spent cleaning.

PS - Joe here.  Look, I didn't really want the skunk dead, but I really wasn't to happy with it...maybe just put it in one of those hamster wheels and make it run for a while.