Jul 19, 2009

I heart Faces photo contest - FEET!

So the photo contest this week at I heart Faces is FEET. Yep, not a face. While this is quite possibly not the best "foot" photo I have ever taken (after all, I sew baby shoes for my home business), it IS my favorite. My daughter, Ainsley, is sitting in the crook of my feet on the sidewalk. I looked down and snapped the picture. She was afraid of her brother riding the bike up and down the sidewalk, and felt this was the best place to watch. Safe and secure between my legs she was very content. It's possible I shouldn't enter my favorite photos for sentimental reasons in photo contests, but rather the ones that are photographically better. But, pictures are taken to "speak" a moment in time, so I chose this one.


You can see more feet pictures (and of course many faces) here at I heart Faces:

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"Insta" Curtains

So I've had a lot of people ask me recently about curtains. Well, here are couple of easy curtain ideas. The first idea is not pictured here, but it does save money. For tall, long curtains, buy bed sheets or a comforter. Snip it down the middle, hem, and hang with hooks from a curtain rod. It saves a lot of money on fabric because those long curtains take up a LOT of fabric!
The second idea is pictured below. Napkins! Seriously. These aren't even sewn. Just folded artfully, flipped over the rod and safety pinned in place. Even the rope and tassle are just safety pinned on the other side. These are currently hanging in my kitchen and have been there for two years. But considering I bought the napkins for $2 each, if I one day decide that I am done with Americana decor, I will not feel so guilty about changing the napkins out for new ones.



So there you go. Now if anyone else asks me about curtains, I am just going to refer them to this blog post and save myself some time in explanations!


Paul and Lisa's Wedding

I went to my step brother, Paul's, wedding last weekend. It was one of the cutest weddings I have been to in a while. My step dad officiated and Paul and Lisa are such a sweet and cute couple and there were so many personal touches through the whole wedding. While everyone else was busy snapping pictures of the bride coming up the aisle, I turned around and snapped one of the groom. Really, I like watching the groom more. They are so expressive as they watch the bride walking up the aisle toward them. I always have ever since my own wedding and watching Tone's face light up as I walked toward him. Look how happy Paul looks here.
Since it was outdoors, the music was simple. In fact is was all done with a water harp. When I first read that in the bulletin, I thought, "Gee, they have got to be kidding!" I had never heard one before, and had chalked it up to a bar trick some people do with glasses. But no, this was super cool, and this guy was awesome! He made the most beautiful music for the wedding. So great, I had to snap a picture!
The setting was gorgeous with the red and white color theme under the gazebo.
Lovely, isn't it? A rather smallish wedding, we all sat down below and watched.
Just a darling couple.
Here they come down the aisle. The new Mr. and Mrs. Paul Pate!
First dance was to a live band. In fact, they met while playing in this band, so it was pretty personal. Paul and Lisa are both musicians for a living, so of course the music was live.

And then they JOINED the band playing, "At Last." Have you ever seen that at a wedding?????
Next, as a surprise, Paul serenaded Lisa, by singing and playing the Sax for her.
I really thought this cake was quite lovely. They even had a little cake for grandpa who turned 81 that day. How cute!
We all had a great time. Here is the step families all together. Parents and happy new couple in the middle. Left to right:
Step sis, Sarah; Me; Mom; step dad, Rick; Lisa and Paul; sister, Krista; sister, Katie

Jul 10, 2009

An Engagement Party

So the invites were sent...my cousin, Cassie, and her fiance', Kevin are getting married in a month! Tonight I went to her engagement party. Here's a picture of the invites I made. It's the middle of summer and just right for an egagement party, held in the beautiful backyard they are getting married in. BBQ hamburgers, chips and dip, and homemade ice cream. Yum! Here is the cute couple! Don't let the appearance of young age fool you. They are both graduated civil engineers from Fresno State and a sweet and fun couple. Cassie wore a bright red dress. Va Va Voom!

My step brother is getting married in two days (it must be wedding weekend in our family), so my parents weren't there, but all the sisters were. Standing next to these two beauties (Katie and Krista) makes me feel both short and a little inadequate. Knockouts aren't they? Boy do we enjoy being with each other. Hunter decided just before we left that since it was a party, he should dress up too. He came out with a new button up shirt (usually reserved for Sundays) buttoned up all crooked, and holding his bow tie for me to put on. How could I resist? I obliged him, and he was so proud of how handsome he looked. He even wanted to wear his hat I made him. He loves his hat!
Good eats! Krista and Brad (Katie's boyfriend) chow down!
Ainsley got a huge splinter during the middle of the whole thing from a wooden bench. Four of us had to hold her down while Brad pried it out of her palm. She screamed bloody murder and thrashed during the whole thing. We felt terrible, but it was huge and we couldn't leave it in there. Especially since it was redwood, and those get really infected and make your skin puff up. As soon as it was out though, it was forgotten. Between sniffs, she said, "Kank you Mama for fixing my hand." Aww, way to make a mom feel so guilty for holding her down. She played happily for the rest of the time and even forgave Brad and he became her knew favorite person. She was willing to show anyone who asked her new owie.
She was in love with the Cheetos, and had a ring of orange around her mouth most of the evening.
He was jumping on the trampoline getting sweaty most of the night and about half way through, lost his hat.
Cassie has horses. They spent a good deal of time peeking over the fence to watch all the action.
Latern lights were strung over the table, and strings of twinkle lights were strung merrily around the edges of the lawn/patio.

Congrats Cassie and Kevin! We sure had fun tonight!

Next blog entry: My step brother, Paul's, wedding!

Jul 8, 2009

Completely busy!

It has been a busy three weeks! We first started out with visting Salinas (three hours away) because my brother and wife were in town. They live outside Washington DC and so we were so excited to spend time with them. We went to the beach and hung out at the house playing hours of competitive Wii. My kids really love their Uncle Josh and Auntie Christin!


Hunter wanted to play the penguin slide game on the Wii board so badly that I let him stand on my feet to play. He laughed so hard that he ended up emptying his whole bladder on my feet and the board. The game was postponed for some serious cleanup. Gross!

Then we rushed back home for Father's Day weekend as friends were staying at our house. The guys ripped out all the flooring in our entryway, dining, and great room and replaced it with tile and laminate, while the girls tried to find things to do for two ladies and four preschoolers that wasn't in the main area of the house. It was pretty crazy around here. We did take them to the mall to play in the fountains. That was one of my better ideas and they loved it.

The floors weren't even done when I flew out for a couple weeks to go on a motorhome trip with my in-laws. They take the grandkids every year, and I go too. Three adults, and five children in a motorhome for two weeks. We went to The Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Louis and Clark Caverns in Montana, back to Yellowstone, Wild Bill Hickock area in Wyoming, and the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. Lots of driving, but lots of cool things to see and great memories. Here's the whole gang, except for Sissy who is sleeping in the motorhome.

Sissy is enjoying looking at the Grand Tetons. They were amazingly beautiful!


The kids are having a great time checking out a ground squirrel hole in the prairie region below the Grand Tetons.
The great thing about Yellowstone is the opportunity for amazing photos like this one. I took so many, but I'll only bore you with this one. I thinks it's my favorite. This hot water spring/pool was just such an amazing color of bright blue with florescent yellows and oranges surrounding the edges. We watched tons of geyers, odd springs, things bubbling up, and fumes everywhere. What a strange place it was. Hunter just loved it. He hates to walk, but he got so into the whole thing, that he walked and ran to all the different sites for hours.


In Montana, the teeny little town we were staying in was hosting the Budweiser Clydesdales. We watched them parade around town the whole afternoon while we ate and played in the grass under shade trees.

Off to Cody, Wyoming where the kids toured an old frontier town. The buildings were all authentic and once homes to characters such as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and their Hole in the Wall Gang.
Then off to the Rockies where we drove the highest road in the United States. Over 12.000 feet! Up in the tundra region it was freezing, windy, and there was still snow on the ground, but drop a few hundred feet, and this is what you see grazing on the side of the road.



However, even in the cold tundra region, wildflowers were growing. The mountains around offered up spectacular views.

And then we were home. We flew out of Denver back to home, new floors, mountains of laundry, and the regular routine of life.