Friday, December 31, 2010

behold, a playroom...

i am pretty sure playrooms were one of those (pre-children) concepts that i thought were frivolous and just a way to take up space. and then i had kids-- and that once shunned idea was added to the list of many other things that i'd never do (like portable dvd players and pacifiers). until we bought this house, we really had no room for a playroom, so it was a moot point. but now that we're here, i think it might be my favorite room in the entire house. not because it's neat and pretty, but because it serves a very definite and convenient function. of course the girls love it too and spend alot of time playing down there and generally tearing the room to shreds. it's a good thing the playroom has a door that closes!
i am not sure where all these toys were kept before we had this room, honestly. i think most of them were put away somewhere the majority of the time. so it's been nice to have things out and accessible but still try to keep the clutter and general toy overload to a minimum. i came across the round "school room" table on the local listserve recently for a whopping $10 and it's been perfect for craft projects and snacks and playing resturant. and since it's meant for a classroom, it's pretty indestructable, which is a bonus. you can probably tell from the photos that this is a dark, basement room with only one small window, so we've had to do the best we can with lighting and settle for that. the room was recently painted two shades of pink and peach, right before we bought this house. i can safely say that i never thought i'd be ok with pink walls, but these don't seem so bad and it makes a formerly dark room feel a little warmer so they will stay the same for now. the only thing lacking at this point is to hang some lines to display the girls' artwork and maybe frame a few of their favorites as well.
behold, a playroom!
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Thursday, December 30, 2010

ask and you shall receive...

we asked for some snow and we got some snow! yippee! i think it's just what this sickly little group needed today. or maybe all of us except for phil, who was the last to get sick and still in the throws of the virus. it's been snowing since last night and isn't supposed to stop until tomorrow. even though it's pretty cold out (7 degrees) it was well worth the time and energy to get everyone layered up and out of the house. if this were february and we hadn't been couped up for a week, we probably wouldn't have motivated... but we needed to get out. and we are very glad we did.

we didn't need to go very far-- the backyard has plenty of snow and the swingset made for some good entertainment too. we intended to round the block on the sled, but a slight wind and dropping temps made us think otherwise. luckily isa was thrilled to be pushed down the (very, very gently sloping) driveway instead! cheers to simple, snowy pleasures followed by hot chocolate and whipped cream.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

sylvi says:

the shop is OPEN once again, after what felt like the shortest holiday break ever. it sure was nice while it lasted! although truth be told, it sure is nice to get back to a little every day life normalcy too, work and all :)
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channeling Bob Vila

we've been burning the candle at both ends lately trying to get lots of work done on this (lovely) old house. especially with nanny being here, we feel like we need to make the most of the winter time by checking off one project after another. i am pretty sure we could spend forever doing this and never really be done, but such is the way of old houses, i suppose. it's been an exceptionally busy few weeks and we've gotten alot done. most noteably, we (and mostly i mean Phil) have refinished the kitchen cabinets and tried to undo the mess that the previous owners left. the progress has been incredible, and it's not nearly done yet, but i will save those details to be shared with some before and after photos.
aside from that, we've spent time fixing up the guest bedroom downstairs-- it was a seriously dark and creepy room before, but is now pretty darn comfortable and inviting if i do say so myself. and it's nice to finally have a bonafide place for guests to stay. painting the dark stained wood paneled walls made the biggest difference, but a trip to ikea and some sewing didn't hurt either!
as i sat down and started writing this post i realized that i actually don't have many pictures of all of this work to share. oops. but i do have a few pictures from our room (which used to be dark red with gold foil all over it... wow) and a few shots from the newly painted girls' room. after four years and three tries, we finally got the green *just* how we wanted it. they love it and so do i... and if they wouldn't kick me out, i'd probably spend more time laying on the sheepskin rug stairing at the green walls!
more pictures to come!
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let it snow

a constant fire and the sheepskin rug have helped us reach a desired level of cozy readiness.

of couse story time in your pjs doens't hurt either.

nor does a hefty stack of wood: cut, chopped, stacked.
i think it's safe to say that we are ready for a little change of scenery around here. it's been an infirmary for a week now and five out of five people in this house have been sick as dogs. it might be the flu, it might just be a bad virus, but either way... it's sucked. no other way around it, that's just the truth of the matter! so no one has been sleeping well and we've all been laying around sniffling and sneezing and wheezing (and crying, in the case of the littlest ones). to top it all off, sylvi got quite the busted lip this afternoon. it won't require stitches but it's pretty impressive-- so much so that she got herself a special milkshake for dinner tonight, lest she have to try to eat hard food and have it open up all over again. oy. and mommy managed a matching booboo by slicing the tip of her thumb cooking dinner as well. good thing for nice neighbors with fully stocked first aid kids.
so i think that fills our (un)health and wellness quota for the rest of 2010, no? as luck would have it (we're being optimists!) we are expected to have a good ole winter storm roll in tonight and stick around through the weekend. given that it's been a really mild winter so far, we think a little change in scenery might be nice. and assuming the temperatures climb back out of the negatives, i know two little girls who are looking forward to some serious snow play. bring it on. and let it snow!
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Saturday, December 25, 2010

christmas morning

christmas morning has been a nice blur of smiles and laughter and little kid christmas magic. it's also been filled with french toast, strawberries, whipped cream, and strong coffee. and now for the post-chaos lounging... ahhh, merry christmas!
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Friday, December 24, 2010


isa asked me to add the following: dear santa, the carrots are for the reindeer. please do not eat them yourself. love, isa
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merry christmas (eve)

the blog has been pretty dormant this week for alot of reasons, but mostly just from every day life details that have added up to mean no spare time for blogging. we've had our share of sickness in the last week (and i don't think we're done yet, unfortunately). sylvi came down with a nasty respiratory bug midweek and is still under the weather. a last minute trip to the doctor and a steriod shot have helped, but she is still a sad little sickling. before that, we were burning the midnight oil working on the new kitchen. we'll post more pictures of that later, but it entailed a few very long days and late nights trying to get 'phase one' done with. we had a small (tacky) christmas party as well, which was a ton of fun and may become a christmas tradition for years to come. sadly we were too busy being tacky to actually break out the camera for documentation purposes!
these photos are from a little christmas eve walk we took this afternoon. with all the sickies and house work, everyone needed some fresh air and vitamin D. we've been lucky enough to have pretty mild temperatures for the last week and figure we should enjoy it while it lasts! isa enjoyed "ice skating" through the frozen gutters, but was a little disappointed to just watch everyone else as we passed by the skating rink.
there you have it, a very crazy week in a nutshell. more christmas commentary and photos to come tomorrow and through the weekend!

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Saturday, December 18, 2010

christmas chaos

we successfully survived Santa's Workshop at the children's museum this morning and even managed to walk out with a few handmade ornaments for the tree. it was pretty crowded though, so our visit was brief! we made it though, so check that one off the list :)
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nanny's here!

now that nanny is here, the official holiday merriment can begin in earnest! mommy is (finally) done in the shop, so she can take part too. it's feels like we've been running a marathon on craziness since october (moving, traveling, nutcrackering, working) so we are all looking forward to some relaxation. let the holidays begin!
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Sunday, December 12, 2010

C is for Cookie!

four year old plus holiday cookie party equals BLISS. isa and i went to a cookie party this afternoon, hosted by the fabulous aimee, and i dare say that isa had a very sweet time. pun fully intended. as they say, it takes a village, and we are lucky enough to be in a village full of bakers! good thing, since mommy can't follow a cookie recipe (that doesn't include Betty Crocker) to save her life. isa had a blast, spending a good hour and a half at the table, surrounded by icing, sprinkles, gingerbread men, and sugar cookies. good times, good times.
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Friday, December 10, 2010

around the house...

it really starts to seem like winter when everything is centered on being inside. ok, not that we have become complete hermits already, but it still really feels like winter when you spend so much time indoors. so, given the disclaimer, here's what our week looked like... we have a family of six deer that come and hang out in the yard every day. it's not a surprise anymore to look up from the windows of the shop and be face to face with an inquisivite deer. yesterday they finished off the rest of the pumpkins on the porch. sylvi was pretty ticked at this and i think we can safely say that deer have been added to the same list of disliked animals as the seagulls.
we've been doing some crafting and decorating as well, hence the color felt balls and the resulting garland. it was intended to be a kid-friendly project but turns out it takes alot of time to thread all those balls (with a needle and pliers too, actually). so they didn't make it through the whole thing, but they did enjoy picking out each ball and helping find a pattern for a while. and of course they love the end product now, so that's something!
sylvi had her two year screening at isa's preschool this morning, and she was very excited about it. as soon as she knew we were headed to the school, she insisted on wearing her backpack. she really enjoyed the screening and took part in all the sections, passing with flying colors like we figured she would. now we just sit back and wait and hope she gets a spot for preschool next year. that's right... sylvi will be in preschool next year and isa in kindergarden. all i can say is WOW.
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