Monday, December 19, 2011

a groovy christmas

This year for our Christmas card we decided to channel the likes of the brady bunch and Ron Burgandy.

I think detail is what makes things special, but you couldn't really see it all in the card we sent out. Because I am a lover of vintage, the only thing we had to purchase for this photo shoot was Cody's jacket. Everything else in the picture is from my own collection including the mushroom painting done by my grandfather in 1977, the Merry Christmas cross stich, the 70's ornaments that belonged to Cody's mother, my favorite lamp, the mushroom figurine from a local antique shop and candles found in this very house. Behind Cody is a Bobby Goldsboro record (which we have never listened to but bought because of its obvious awesomeness), and next to me are the Carpenters Christmas albums. Behind them is a black sabbath record. Just for fun.

My dress is my favorite, even though Cody thinks it's ugly. It is a vintage 70's boho pioneer (?) type dress. You know, from back when people thought dressing in long pioneer style dresses and bonnets was stylin' Which is was. I'm sad that you can't see my dress in this photo very well.
Oh yeah, and the chair that someone abandoned in this house a friend was renting out. Jealous?
Here is a version of the card we sent out to family and friends last week.

A Groovy Christmas

And don't feel bad for my husband. Just envy him.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

I think we're haunted...


I know that there are perfectly logical explanations for the goings on that I am about to divulge, I just don't know what they are.

Let me preface by saying that I live in my grandparent’s house. I moved in after they went to a rest home, and they both passed away shortly thereafter.

Last night was a very restless night. I woke up to the light of my touch light, which is all the way over in my bathroom, but I can see it clearly from where I sleep. This happens sometimes, always in the middle of the night. Just every once in a while it comes on, on its dimmest setting.

Usually it does not bother me, I push my first thoughts of ghosts out of my mind otherwise my imagination will get out of hand. Besides, what ghost would do that? I can't think of any dead people that I know who are obnoxious enough to do that. I think that it was probably just some kind of weird power surge (I don't know what a power surge includes, but why not?) or maybe a short of some kind.

But why is it always in the middle of the night? The time of day that my mind is most likely to run away with me. And last night it was on its brightest setting which hasn't ever happened before. It has to be touched 3 times for it to be on the brightest setting. So of course, being the person that I am, I was a little unsettled.

But I pushed it out of my brain long enough for me to fall asleep again.

And then, it happened again. I woke up an hour later to the same thing. This time I was a little freaked out, and I unplugged the dang thing.

I go to sleep and proceed to have my least favorite type of nightmares. The ghosty type. I have these pesky dreams sometimes, and some of them are so real that I still have not completely convinced myself that they were actually dreams. The last one basically consisted of me waking up in my bed, feeling something invisible getting into bed with me, and then pressing me down so hard that I couldn’t move any part of my body, I couldn’t even breathe. I woke up with my heart beating out of my chest. That one was real, real freaky. And hopefully just a dream.

The one I had last night was more obviously a dream, but still flipping scary. It usually occurs to me that I am dreaming whilst in the dream, but last night that did not happen. I had the ability to feel ghosts, I would run into them sometimes in my house. I was like the ghost whisperer, but without actually being able to see them, and without the easy charm of Jennifer Love Hewitt. Anyway, there was a particularly annoying ghost, and my mom told me I had to herd it into this closet, board it up, and never go in there again. I was thinking “can’t ghosts just float through the walls and boards?” But apparently not. Anyway, it was a very stressful and long and scary dream.

So, I am willing to believe that my stupid touch light is just on the fritz. However, that does not explain the remotes in my living room.

Every 6 months or so, one of our remotes goes missing. Perfectly regular and unexciting, I know. BUT. The first time it happened, I looked everywhere. It wasn’t anywhere in the living room. So for some strange reason, I decided to look clear across the house in the bathroom cabinet. And that is where it was. I figured that it was either my sleepy sister or her son that had done it on their way to bed when they were staying with me a few days prior. She swore that it couldn’t have been her, she doesn’t sleep walk, or anything like that. I still thought that it was probably one of them.

And then the next remote went missing a few months later. We tore the living room apart. Our couch swallows things, so I looked in every crack, under the couch, behind the couch. It was driving me nuts. It was nowhere. I swear to you, every crack of that couch was searched thoroughly. It was missing for a few weeks. Then our other remote went missing. I looked and looked. And guess what I found? The first remote, in a very shallow crack in the couch. I almost lost my ever-loving mind. Again, I SWEAR to you that I searched that couch, that CRACK SO well. The remote was not there. And then suddenly, months later, there it was. Practically lying on top of the couch.

That was the point that I felt something strange was going on. Anyway, I later found the second remote. Now our PS3 remote is missing. This time, we literally took the sectional couch apart and lifted it off the ground and moved it. There was a lot of stuff, but no remote. Again, we have looked everywhere possible and it is nowhere to be found. I know that people lose remotes. But my remotes seem to fall into the netherworld when they go missing. When I lose stuff now and I look everywhere and can’t find it, I always look, while laughing at myself, in the bathroom cabinet. I haven’t ever found anything in there since the first time, though.

I guess I will just have to wait for the PS3 remote to reappear on its own. Or, you know, with a little otherworldly help.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Christmas is Aloof!

Hello there, Merry Christmas! I know "Christmas is aloof" doesn't really make sense to normal people. It is my families way of saying "Christmas is in the air." Not "Christmas is conspicuously uninvolved and uninterested, typically through distaste" like the dictionary might lead you to believe. I don't know why we use the word aloof, but we do, and we like it.

It is time for my Christmas Decorations post once again. Since I didn't sew 1,000 throw pillows for this season, decorating went a lot faster than Halloween did, thank goodness.

This year, some decorations got switched up, and some stayed the same. Like the display below. Isn't the wall art cool? I found it at a thrift store last year. It's just a bunch of vintage Christmas cards glued to wood!

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Here is the living room:

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Every year we get one or two new ornaments for our tree. We only get the ones that we really, really like so they are more special.


Cody thought it was pretty ridiculous that every time I went to the thrift store, I would come out with a wreath. It was all for this little display. I LOVE how it turned out. It looks way better in person. Each vine wreath has its own little red accent.

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I did my shelves much different this year. I got this cute framed subway art from a free download on Pinterest.

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This is my new favorite item. He is a Jim Shore Santa. I love Jim Shore!

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Cody is amazing. He made me these little houses that I now decorate for every season.

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Tiny Wreaths!

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The nutcracker and snowman shelves pretty much stayed the same as last year.

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The dining room:

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The fireplace:
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This is the only craft I have made this year. I gathered the pine-cones from Cedar City months ago so I could make this garland.
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I think one of the reasons I like decorating so much is because of how good I feel once a project is finished. I love to walk away from the area for a while and then surprise myself with how great and different it looks whenever I come back to see it. Ha.

This year Cody finally put Christmas lights on the house! I was so excited to see him up there with the ladder, fixing dead lights and being brave on the roof. He never got around to it in the past years, and it made me a little jealous to hear about men who got up early to get a Christmas tree before their wives woke up, or to see them up on their roofs before Thanksgiving even came. I guess this is just because Christmas is a huge deal in my family, and Cody's family never made a big thing out of the holidays. I just want him to get excited about these things and he just isn't the "excited" type. But this year he made some effort. Bravo, husband!

Side note, Cody's mom also didn't have many Disney Movies around. It is insane to me that he never saw Mary Poppins before I came along. INSANE.

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Baby Shower

I threw a baby shower for my dear sister-in-law Elisa. It turned out pretty cute, I guess.

Welcome to the Shower

What would a baby shower that I pretty much totally planned on Pinterest be without a few chalk boards?

Oh Boy Banner

Oh Boy Banner 2

Baby Shower Chalk Board

Mad Libs Tree

We had mad libs cards that everyone filled out with advice for the new mommy.

Mad Libs


The food turned out deliciously. Lots of family members made the food happen, and it was gobbled up promptly.

The Menu:
Turkey Special Sandwiches
Vanilla Cupcakes with Strawberry Filling
Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Filling
My Moms Amazing Cheeseball
Artichoke and Spinach Dip with chips and baguettes

Charlie Pictures

If you could not tell, the shower was bird themed. The table was also decorated with tender pictures of baby Charlie I took the day before the baby shower.

Frogs and Snails Sandwiches


By the by, Elisa made this cupcake stand! It turned out beautifully, don't you think?

Cider Punch!

We had a yummy apple cider punch.

Cody's Tower of Cups

I asked Cody to put the cups out for easy access. Cody got creative.

This shin-dig took lots of work but it was sooo good plan it out as much as I did, otherwise things would have been a mess. And the lovely new momma enjoyed it, I think. And that is what makes it count the most!

Thanks so so so much to every single person who helped make this partay happen! And Congrats to Elisa and Kevin!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

I'm cropping a lot of people out of these photos.

Yesterday was one of the best days of the year. Halloween. I got up at 6:30 am which is not a time I want to see anything other than the inside of my eyelids. But there was much preparation that needed to be done to get ready for work on this creepy and wonderful day. 3 hours of make-up application later, I looked like this:

This is my manager and me at work. We are a team so we dressed up in coordinating Dia de los Muertos costumes. I wanted to look like the work of Sylvia Ji, but with less skin showing. The costumes turned out great and I even won a $5.00 gift card to Judd's (a place by my workplace with yummy soup) for my costume.

The makeup turned out better than I could have hoped for. And my skeleton lady cameo necklace that I ordered from Etsy showed up on Saturday, just in time. Phew!

The dressed up Learnkey folks went on the annual parade around the area of Main Street and took lots of good photos.

Then we made our way over to the park carousel and the lady let us ride it! It was so much fun, as you can see I was quite gleeful.

Oh man. Halloween is the best. I sometimes wish everyday could be this way so that I can just go to the grocery store, or drive down the street, and pass people in the most ridiculous get-ups and it is considered acceptable. I guess that is what Wal-Mart is for though. And since I am a lover of the macabre, I just can't get enough creepy spooky talk. I love to hear stories about who saw what ghost or heard what place is haunted. And this is the day that people talk about it! I get to hear about the stories of the LearnKey basement and be frightened whenever I have to go down there to the bathroom! Yay!

Hope you had a very scary Halloween!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Here are some lovely shots of my front porch this year. These pumpkins are all from my very own patch. We got lots of cool ones!

Here are some not so great shots of my kitchen table. I am still having to use my cell phone for my photography needs.

This is a chemistry set filled with fall leaves.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Fall Throw Pillows

These pictures are really crappy. I apologize for that, the only pictures I can put on my blog are from my phone.

These are the throw pillows that I have finished so far. They are my first real project on my sewing machine that I got for Christmas. All I have used it for so far is sewing up my moxie owl packages and making a couple of bean bags for my Sunday school class.

I finally remade the cat pillows after losing the originals to a tragic explosive pumpkin-mold incident:

I think they turned out even better than the first set! Although I should have looked at the old picture before making these because I like the old version of the whiskers better.

These are my scrappy leaf autumn pillows. I got the idea off of pinterest. They took forever to make because of all the individual leaf sewing but it was so worth it!

Hopefully I will get a new laptop someday and I will be able to post real photos of everything awesome that has been going on.

Oh yes, Cody made me a giant amazing beautiful chalk board. Here is a picture of it!

He made it out of a big sheet of metal sprayed with chalkboard paint. And of coarse he made the magnificent frame himself. Cody is pretty much the bomb.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Not that I have anything against Costco or their cake

The baby shower is looming. There is so, SO much to do for this. Per usual, I am making it a lot harder than it needs to be because of my “vision.” I have so many decorations to make and I still need to test out a bunch of recipes for the food I will be making. I am both excited and nervous. My family has been giving me quite a hard time because I can’t just do what they have always done with baby showers and bring some cake from Costco, throw down some paper plates, and have a few members of the family come over to sit and chat for a while. I’m sorry, but no. Not going to happen.

I have been told that it is just a generational thing, that people in this neck of the woods just do things easy peasy lemon squeezey and don’t need their parties and gatherings to quote “look like a magazine.” That younger people like me must do things like quote “Paris Hilton.” Now this particular explanation both offended and confused me because quite frankly, I do not appreciate Paris Hilton or her work, nor do I see what she has to do with my wanting to throw a pretty baby shower. And if she did throw a baby shower, I can guarantee it would not be my brand of pretty.

I asked my sister what she meant by this and she said she was really just trying to come up with someone “hip and cool” to use as an example. I informed her that I didn’t agree with her idea of who we young people think is cool.

Aimee: I don’t know who you people like. Hanna Montana? iCarly? Justin Beiber?

Me: Are you aware that I’m not 12? I think when you are trying to find someone "cool" for me to relate to, you shouldn’t use your new found love of the Disney Channel as your frame of reference.

Aimee: I apologize that I like iCarly! iCarly is funny!


And she meant it. Haha. Oh Aimee, you are my little gentleman gentlewoman. ?.

I do understand that different people choose to use their time in different ways. I am a person who enjoys doing things all the way, and making them the way I see it in my head. Not to toot my own horn, but this is how my brain works. It thinks up beautiful pictures and I have the ability to make them come to life. I think that this was a gift that I was blessed with, and I should use it, not hide it under a bushel, whatever that is.

So what is so wrong with wanting to throw this shindig properly?? And this is not a rhetorical question, please; if you can see why I should be condemned for such a thing as wanting an aesthetically pleasing spread with cohesive serve-ware, please enlighten me. Things CAN, despite what I have been told, be made to look like “a magazine” with very little money. Or at least close. I have done it many times and I will continue to do so whether people agree or not. I have not asked for anyone’s help, I am doing this myself, so who am I hurting?

All I am asking is that the awesomeness that I am creating is appreciated. Just a little. Is that really so hard? No, I submit that it is not.

Monday, September 26, 2011

My Computer Blew Up

Hello, there. I have been wanting to post so many things but a few months ago my laptop took its last breath. She was getting old and it was bound to happen, but I had no idea it would be such a final death. Cody was working on it and it started to make funny noises and smell like something was burning. The next time I tried using it, it literally began to smoke. I could still use it but it would randomly shut off, and shoot blue sparks when I tried to adjust the power cord. But now it won’t even entertain the idea of turning on. Very sad. And saving up for a new one is proving to be a lot harder than we thought.

Cody does have a computer, but it may as well be a plank of wood with a mouse plugged into it because that’s about as useful as it is.

So that is why I have been absent. I do not like posting anything without photos, and I obviously have no way of getting pictures off of my camera anymore. But I finally gave in and decided to post a picture-less post.

My favorite time of year is almost here! My pumpkins are growing big and orange and the decorating fever has pretty much completely taken over my mind. My poor husband has been recruited for many projects that he doesn’t particularly want to do and I have committed myself to making a ridiculous amount of autumn-themed throw pillows. As in about 15 pillows. Who even does that? That is a lot of pillows for one little person to make.

I have been working full time which is such a blessing. I have so much less time now, though! I am getting a little overwhelmed with everything I want to get done over the next couple months. Sewing enough throw pillows to build a very large and impressive pillow fort, decorating for fall (a very daunting task at my house) and the big one, planning out the baby shower I am throwing for my sister-in-law. And usually by this time of year, I have a pretty good list of the Christmas gifts I want to get for everyone. Haven't even started. I feel like such a failure!

We are also trying to go to Disneyland in October and we have just been putting off paying for it over and over again. I am getting bigger pay checks but have just as little money as before. How does that happen? But we have to go! We have put it off for 2 years and I have already prepared a California themed playlist to listen to on the way there. So it's really not even a choice at this point.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Good Morning, Garden!

My backyard in the morning.



Here is a pumpkin that looks more like a watermelon.

Here is the pumpkin that grew first. He is the biggest. Still about the size of a large onion.
I don't remember what kinds these are, as they grew all over each other, but I have about 10 different species in here.

I was so worried that the bee's wouldn't find my pumpkins (if they didn't, that would mean the fruit would wither up and die) so I went to the nursery and bought a plant that attracts bees. When I got home and went to plant it, the bees were already there. They love these big flowers.


There is a whole world under the big leaves full of green light.

There's a baby pumpkin! The thing hanging off of it is a female flower.








These little curly vines grab onto everything they can find, even the weeds.