Saturday, February 22, 2014


Starting to realize what this whole 'big brother' thing really means...

 "A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2014"
I found this book on Amazon for Avery to have once baby brother comes, but realized it would be better if he got a chance to read it before baby actually came. I don't know that he realizes what the book actually means for him, but he sure loves to point out the baby on all the pages. :)  The other day, I was folding laundry in his room and glanced over to find he had crawled up in the chair and was reading. I ran for my camera and he let me click away while he perused through 4-5 books (the boy LOVES books so much he didn't even notice me!). His face in this one was so priceless given the book he was reading. Maybe it's actually starting to sink in what's about to happen around here... or maybe not. Either way, we're as prepared as we can be!

I think my favorite thing about this photo is how similar it is to the photo below that my mom snapped of me when I was almost exactly Avery's age- the book I'm reading being equally fitting to the look on my face.
Linking up here

Saturday, February 15, 2014


Beating the winter doldrums with lots of bouncing, somersaulting and dodging balls. Happy days!
 "A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2014"

Something about this week made me realize just how big my baby boy is becoming. He's adding all kinds of words to his vocabulary, he helped me bake numerous times without a huge disaster and I swear he jumps higher and runs faster than he ever has. (I also pulled his newborn clothes out of the closet to wash up in preparation for his baby brother and it blows my mind that he was ever that tiny.)

I chose this photo over the MANY other ones I took because of the hint of that happy magic Avery gets in his eye when he's
in the midst of his crazy bouncing time. If only for a second, he forgot I was holding a camera when he glanced my way and I caught the look before he turned on his get-that-camera-out-of-my-face scowl.

We were finally able to get outside and take a couple of walks on warm(er) afternoons this week. We're anticipating an even bigger warm-up coming up in the next few days!!
Splish splash!

Linking up with The 52 Project here

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Baby Boy's Nursery Reveal!

Finally! With only a month to go until baby boy is due to arrive, his nursery is finished! (with the exception of missing the glider rocker, which should arrive on Wednesday)

Avery's nursery theme came so easily and there were so many different options available, but I struggled for a long time deciding on a theme for this room. I went back and forth with 2 or 3 different ideas for months before deciding on a 'Giving Tree' theme (the book by Shel Silverstein) If you haven't read the book, I highly suggest it. It's about a tree (a personified 'mother') and a little boy that she loved so much she gave literally everything she had to him to make him happy. The only reason I didn't stick with this theme originally was because the message the book sends can be a bit of a downer (the tree gave and gave and gave to the little boy but nothing seemed to satisfy him) but in the end, I think the overall message is one of unconditional love and that along with the simple drawings in the book sold me. (Thanks to my awesome sister for helping me decide ;)

The new nursery was our old guest room (Justin's office now serves as both his workspace AND a guest room) and although we kept the paint color the same, Justin and I spent a lot of time in the beginning adding a board and batten look to the bottom half of the walls, which we think really makes the room pop. I'm SO disappointed that we didn't get a 'before' photo, but sometimes we just get so excited to start, we forget to stop for a second and take a quick photo. (Imagine a pretty dark room with a bed in the middle and a side table, that's about what it was)

Here are a few shots of the nursery now:
Side 1: We ended up purchasing another crib because Avery isn't quite ready to transition out of his and when he is, it's a convertible style so we will just remove one of the rails and it will become his toddler bed eventually. This crib we bought for baby #2 is the same style and will grow with him. 

I made the bed skirt out of 1 yard of home dec fabric using this tutorial (it took me about 1/2 hour and cost about $10 - perfect!)

I also made the quilt and will be reusing the same sheets and bumper pad that we used on Avery's crib.
That gaping space on the right will be where the glider will eventually be. Since we still use the one in Avery's room daily, we ended up purchasing a new one of those too and it will be in our room for a few months while baby sleeps in there with us (isn't it funny that I feel a need to FINISH the nursery before baby arrives knowing full well that he won't actually spend much time in here until 4 or 5 months later? Silly nesting...)

When Justin was away for a conference in Florida a few months ago, I filled my alone time in the evenings with this tree painting project. I just free handed a tree in the style of the ones in the book and painted them with the same paint that we used for the board and batten. I made some 3D apples out of heavy cardstock and hung them from the ceiling (they hang over where the glider will be)

The book shelves on either side of the crib were an idea I found on Pinterest using these spice rack shelves from Ikea. They are a little more functional and hefty than the ones in Avery's room and will hold plenty of books! :) 

The framed prints are spreads from the book that I scanned, spliced together and removed the words from. Then I printed them out on green cardstock, matted them, and hung them in frames I painted to match the rest of the white in the room.

Side 2: This dresser that I refinished a few years ago has been in this room since we moved in and with its wide top and spacious drawers, it's now a perfect changing station. The white walls really make the dresser and the mirror (that was already mounted on the wall) look EXTRA awesome :)

I painted and bought a new shade for an old lamp we had, bought a cheap changing pad from Ikea and attached another Ikea shelf to the wall to hold lotions, etc. and this whole changing set-up ended up costing us less than $10! 

The shelf on the right was made by Justin and will hold the baby monitor, fan for white noise, and maybe a basket for toys.

Side 3: The curtains are blackout curtains from Target, the frames to the left and right of the window will hold baby's name collage and a baby photo, and the little window seat underneath was also made by Justin and has baskets filled with baby toys and stuffed animals (Avery has really enjoyed finding these little treasures!)

A view of the whole room (from the doorway) There are a few more 'personalized' things that will be added once baby is born but for now, it's a very peaceful space just waiting for a little wiggly boy to make it complete :)


This little rascal...
the face of a boy who was trying really, really hard NOT to smile
(mama won)

 "A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2014"
In the last week, Avery got his very first haircut ever and has fully transitioned into 24 month/2T clothes. This combination has my baby boy looking all too grown up and his independent nature seems to have blossomed in the wake of it all. We have given in to the crazy cabin fever we all suffer from and have successfully turned our home into a jungle-gym that would rival any fast-food joint around, complete with a trampoline, tunnel and ball pit (some days the trampoline also doubles as the ball pit), a toddler swing mounted to the ceiling, and a 'car' (a playground steering wheel that Justin mounted to a stand) that Avery has free rein to customize as he sees fit (so far he's plastered it in doodles and Sesame Street stickers.)  

Spring can't come soon enough, although I know that along with spring comes baby boy #2 and these carefree days spent alone with my sweet Avery will be changed forever and that is so bittersweet. 
I'm soaking up every minute.

Saturday, February 1, 2014


Rosy cheeks and dump trucks: pure boy.
 "A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2014"

Before the bitter cold hit this week, we were able to spend some time outside playing in the snow. Avery found his dump truck in the porch and decided to take it for a spin, using his snow shovel to fill it up with extra heavy snow and then plowing it through the drifts. He may have been born in Indiana, but he's got a Wisconsin love for snow :)

Who are we kidding... I can never choose just ONE... ;)