Wow, it sure has been a while! I know after P’s birthday I promised to be back at the blog with a vengeance but alas, life (and TONS of projects!) got in the way. Since October we have been enjoying an extremely mobile (but still squishy) baby who is just as sun-shiny as he’s always been only much more talkative and that much more fun as a result. Somewhere in there we also celebrated Halloween (DIY projects to come!), Thanksgiving, the 239th Marine Corps Birthday Ball and then kicked off the holiday season by participating in our officer community’s holiday Tour of Homes, so needless to say, we have been CRAZY busy! Now that the hustle and bustle of the holiday season is calming down (I think? lol) I plan to get back to polluting the blogosphere with lots of posts highlighting what I’ve been up to craft-wise and prove that while life has been pretty crazy, some of that craziness was due to projects that had me so caught up that I didn’t have a free minute to sit down and share them with you guys. That being said I’m super excited to share all of my DIY and entertaining adventures from the past few months with you so get prepared to be seeing a lot me on here! 🙂
Oh my goodness! It sure has been a while, I think this is the longest I’ve gone with posting since I started the blog. I’ve mostly been MIA due to the planning of sweet baby P’s “Where the Wild Things Are” first birthday party (which I can’t wait to share!), so although my posts have been lacking for the last few weeks my crafting has not so be on the look out for lots of new posts in the next few days and weeks 🙂
While I’m up to my ears in Halloween decor projects I want to take a quick second to get a post up about my sweet baby P and the fact that he TURNED ONE LAST WEEK!!! I still can’t believe it, I know everyone tells you how the early years will fly but there is nothing that could have prepared me for how fast this year actually went. As for my sweet one year old he is saying several words, walking, eating everything in sight (with the exception of milk, we’re still working on that one lol) and has the funniest little personality. He is learning something new each and every day and it is just amazing to have been able to watch our little boy grow and change right before our eyes over the past year. Looking back on my very first chalkboards while documenting my pregnancy it’s so fascinating to see how our little baby has grown into the little energetic and funny frog that we have the pleasure of spending the rest of our lives with. I will continue to document baby P’s growth using my go-to method of chalk boards but will probably reduce my updates to every three months or so. I hope checking out my other posts on documenting baby P’s growth (month one – six, seven, eight, nine, ten and eleven) will inspire you to document your baby as such, I am so excited to one day be able to share these pictures with him and glad that I will get to look back and remember all the small details of his development 🙂
Baby P is 11 months old! How did that happen?! I can’t believe I will have a one year old in less than a month, it’s so bitter sweet because while I am loving how he has become such a fun little boy I still miss him being a squishy baby. This past month alone he has become even more of a little person, he is even starting to form his first little words, in addition to “Mama” and “Dada” he now says “this” and “that” (words that are usually accompanied by a little finger pointing frantically at the object of interest, lol), he is even beginning to be able to mimic words we say, although he doesn’t know what he is saying, haha. He still loves the outdoors, animals (dogs especially!) and nature in general, we genuinely feel bad when we bring him back indoors after playing outside because he looks so sad, ha! We are also enjoying his love of food as he much prefers to share what J and I are eating than his own food (which is fine by me, less time spent making separate meals for him, lol). Here he is with his football themed chalkboard (since it’s still 90 degrees here almost everyday I thought doing a fall themed board would be a little premature, ha!), sporting one of my DIY tie onsies in support of his favorite team – the NY Giants, duh! If you love these chalkboard updates as much as I do check out his other boards for birth-six months, seven months, eight months, nine months and ten months as well as all of my pregnancy chalkboards. Next chalkboard update will be for baby P’s one year marks, somebody pinch me! 🙂
I cannot believe I have a ten month old baby! Seriously where does the time go? This last month has been awesome, right after his nine month board he began to walk while holding onto objects and crawl consistently on all fours. He can also high-five and give kisses which are two of the sweetest things we’ve ever experienced 🙂 He finally has two teeth and is on the verge of getting a bunch more based on how this week has been going, lol. I feel like we hardly have a baby anymore since I’m sure by eleven months he’ll be walking on his own. Here he is sitting with his “Parker by Numbers” board, I had to bribe him with his favorite frog because he kept trying to jump off of the chair, haha. Fun fact about his outfit, I bought it at a second hand store before he was born, I can’t believe he is actually wearing it! Speaking of disbelief, I have definitely learned that it is one of the most common themes in parenting, for both good and bad reasons, haha. If you love seeing baby P (who wouldn’t!? lol) check out his birth to six, seven, eight and nine month boards and my pregnancy documentation.
I can’t believe I forgot to post Baby P’s 9 month board! I probably forgot because I’ve been too busy chasing him around the house 🙂 He is full on crawling (he has been crawling since six months but can now move fast enough to follow us from room to room and run away, lol) and can pull himself up and stand unassisted! I cannot believe how much he is growing and definitely think that from month eight to month nine he has changed the most, especially his little personality, he is just so much fun to be around. We especially love how much he is enjoying the outdoors and how much he loves animals, he loves to point (a new thing he started doing) at the birds as they eat from his bird feeder (we got him one of those see-through bird feeders that suction cups to the window, he is obsessed with it!). We can’t wait to see what this next month brings, as we are loving every second with our adorable little frog baby! Here is his nine month board (don’t forget to check out his birth-six, seven and eight month boards as well as my pregnancy), I like to theme the boards with the holidays when possible so this one was for 4th of July and boy is he ever a little firecracker 🙂 Sorry for the bad photo quality, as if my lack of photography skills don’t pose enough of a challenge, an increasingly mobile Baby P and the bad lighting in our new home are making these monthly boards that much harder to accomplish, haha.
These last two weeks have been CRAY-ZY and have left me absent from blogland as I scramble to try to get us all set up to move into our new home TOMORROW! I promise to get back to it once we’re settled (hopefully with some great new posts on how to spruce up these cookie cutter military homes!). Over the weekend my sweet baby P turned eight months old and I did find the time to eek out a cute little beach themed summer chalkboard. I must say that these last two months with baby P have been my favorite, he is crawling and eating by himself and learning new things everyday. He is SO much fun and really loves spending time with J and I, each day I feel more and more like he is a real active part of our little fam now (as opposed to a little prince on a pillow lol). Here he is in all his eight month glory right before we headed down to the beach on Sunday for one last day of relaxation before this crazy week! Check out baby P at month seven and his other chalkboards here!
Father’s Day is just a few short weeks away and baby P and I both agree that J is just about the best daddy there is and deserves nothing but the best for his special day! Thing is, the gift that my frugal hubby would love the most is for me not to spend money, haha, lucky for him I had been planning two budget friendly, DIY, grand slam Father’s Day gifts for months now (well actually since baby P was born lol). Since J is up in NY for fleet week for two weeks, I knew this would be the perfect opportunity to get my Father’s Day pics out of the way, printed and wrapped before his return. Additionally, I like to share my holiday crafts with my Mommy friends, so I always like to test out my projects before hand, to ensure it comes out as planned and make it easier for me to host a craft play date without having to wrangle baby P at the same time.
Okay so back to the photos, can I tell you that I literally cried after I saw how amazing these pictures turned out? Baby P is just the squishiest, happiest little thing and I know J is going to DIE when he opens this gift on Father’s Day (if I can wait that long to give it to him lol jk I will)! Don’t worry I made him promise not to read the blog for a few weeks and since he loves surprises so much I know for a fact he won’t peek ;-). Since the pics are self explanatory I’ll just go into a bit more detail with each picture below. Hope this inspires you to have some fun with your little and give their Daddy something fun and meaningful for Father’s Day!
*For more examples of DIY holiday photos check out this post!
Okay, obviously you’ve seen this one all over Pinterest, so needless to say this isn’t an original idea but sooo stinkin cute nonetheless! I purchased a “D” and an “A” from Michael’s at $3.99 a piece and used a 30% off-entire-purchase coupon, I also returned the following day to purchase the frame (originally priced at $12.99) using a 40% off coupon. Confession: in my super stingy mind I did for a moment consider returning the letters after I was done (I know, terrible) but I decided it would be best to keep them to repeat this Father’s Day craft for my crafting play date and with any future children I may have. The onsie is another one of my DIY projects that I came up with specifically for this picture, check out the tutorial for DIY Little Man onsies here, they are super cheap and mostly no-sew! For the picture itself I just sat him on our vintage wing back chair (which actually made for the perfect backdrop!) and snapped his pictures with my smart phone. When I was done, I used the Walgreen’s photo app to upload my pics and picked them up the next time I was out, three 4X6 pictures cost me about $0.40 after coupons!!! Quick plug for the Walgreen’s photo app – I LOVE it, it’s so convenient since it’s all done from your phone, just make sure you Google “Walgreen’s photo coupons” before completing your order since there are always coupon codes for photo prints (this time it was 40% off!). Including all components this project cost me right around $14.00. TIP: If you want to save on framing costs simply purchase an 11X14 frame from a thrift store and arrange the photos side by side over a colored piece of paper or cardstock, as opposed to buying a three hole frame or simply use the app “picstitch” or another photo app/kiosk to turn your three images into a three frame single photo.
“DADDY’S SHOES” PHOTO
This photo was a copycat of a professional Father’s Day photo I found here on Pinterest, which I then adapted to include my hubby’s military gear. I figured since I was going to be recreating this idea with all of my Mommy friends, who are all military mamas as well, including the military boots and cover would be an extra special touch. To set up the picture I followed my usual steps for a DIY photo backdrop and then added the words using the free photo app “Phonto” (see this post for detailed instructions for use of the app) after taking the picture. This photo I printed in size 8X10 via Shutterfly for $1.79, the frame I will be using is one that we already have so that part will be free, which means … this gift cost me $1.79, say whaaaaaaat??! NOTE: When doing the picture with a little girl I plan to change the end of the poem to “… as great a person and as true a friend, as my Daddy is to me”, since the original poem is specifically for another male.
There you have it – two ADORABLE Father’s Day gifts coming in right at around $15.00!!! My hubby will LOVE these gifts, and love their price tag as well!
This will just be a quick post to share our family pictures with you since I love them so much :). Since our gender reveal our photographer Sherry of Cool Breeze Photography of NC has photographed us several other times, to include these family pictures, and we are absolutely in LOVE with her work! My little P was such a good sport considering I dressed him for fall and it was 90 degrees that day, poor thing lol. We picked downtown Wilmington as the location for our pictures because while we knew we wanted to do the pictures outdoors, we figured that having more of a city background as opposed to a nature setting (as was the setting for most of our other photographs) would be a good way for us to switch it up. As for our outfits, I was super selfish and based them around my dress (purchased from Ruche aka my favorite online retailer in the history of ever lol) which I picked out before choosing outfits for the boys :-P, BUT it worked out because given the color scheme I was able to dress J & P in clothes that they already owned. I found that Pinterest has a lot of great resources when trying to decide what to wear for family pictures, I went with the similar-colors-different-prints idea and I think it worked out great! I hope you love these pictures as much as I do and I hope Baby P puts a smile on your face (if he doesn’t you might need to get your head checked, I’m worried about you lol jk). XOXO
Since I’ve been absent from blogland for a bit due to a quick NY trip, I wanted to share a quick post with you while I work on some other craft posts that will be up later this week! The day we left for NY was also baby P’s 7 month birthday! While it’s sad that he is growing so fast I love that he’s getting to do real human things like try new foods and even begin to crawl. Here is his 7 Month board, it’s not as creative as some of my other boards but an unanticipated sink clog disaster kept me from working on this board until about midnight the night before we left so forgive my lack of motivation on this one, haha. To see the rest of baby P’s monthly boards check out my original post here!
As I’ve mentioned before, I’m big on sending cards to family and friends for just about every holiday, so now that Mother’s Day is just a short week away this was no exception! Quick money saving tip I want to mention – if you’re like me and have 10+ people on your holiday card list (and I’m not talking Christmas, this is just a simple holiday like Mother’s Day lol), DO NOT get sucked into buying your cards at the local drug store or supermarket (if I did this I would easily spend upwards of $30.00 on cards per holiday), I head to the Dollar Tree and get all of my holiday cards for $.50 each, they’re not anything spectacular but they have a good selection and you won’t have to spend $4.99 on one card, haha. Okay, back to the picture. Since baby P has a lot of awesome moms/grandmas/aunts in his life I wanted to whip up a cute little pic to send along with my cards. This pic was super easy, all I used was my DIY pennant banners, a white sheet and a smart phone (check out my post on other DIY holiday pictures here). For a more detailed step-by-step description check out the previously mentioned post, but I will give you a quick rundown of what I did below. I hope this inspires you to do your own little holiday photo with your little, I love taking advantage of this squishy age because lets be real, how long is he really going to let me torture him like this? haha Happy Mother’s Day to all my fellow mommies xoxo.
WHAT I USED:
- White Sheet
- Smart Phone or other camera
- DIY Pennant Banners
- “Phonto” free picture editing app (if you would like to add text to your photo)
HOW I DID IT:
- First, I set up my white sheet on a wall facing a window (so I had lots of natural light), by laying half the sheet on the floor and using tape to secure the other half against the wall.
- Next I hung my pennant banners, securing them with tape.
- I took a test shot using my smart phone to make sure that I was happy with the area captured in the picture as well as the lighting.
- I sat my squishy baby down and gave him a bouquet of fake flowers that we use as decor in the bathroom and snapped away until he started eating the flowers, haha.
- After I chose the picture I wanted to use the free “phonto” app to add the words “Happy Mother’s Day” to the pennant banners. This was extremely easy because the app will allow you to add as much text as you would like and manipulate the placement, tilt and color. Since the app automatically reverts back to the previously used font, size and color when adding multiple text to the same picture, it made it super simple for me to arrange the letters so it looked as if they were already on the pennants.
- Once I was finished adding text to the picture, I used the free Walgreen’s app to upload my photo and purchase 10 copies for under $1.00, using a 40% off coupon code (every time I am ordering photos I always google “walgreens photo coupon” and there is usually always one available). I love this app because your photos are usually ready within minutes for store pick-up and our Walgreen’s is just three miles from home!