Friday, July 27, 2012

playroom update

As you all know, I went home last Monday for a few days to start my playroom renovation! I am SO excited with how it has all turned out in just three short days. RQ and I almost didn't even want to head back east! I even managed to stay within my budget of zero--- well, sort of. Ma-lolo did buy some new play mats to match the crazy color scheme I had to stick with and I did buy some tissue paper to make some paper flowers. Everything else (so far) we already had! I had two different shades of green paint left from our kitchen and chalkboard paint left from last summer/fall. I did the owl painting myself with my acrylic paints on a piece of wood we found behind the shed. I do have plans to make new curtains and pillow cases and hopefully a fabric store will have a big sale soon and I can find some fun pinks for those! I am also still planning to paint the bookcase (which came from my classroom and is still unfinished). I think I may paint it one of the green colors and do chevrons, stripes or circles in white or something fun like that! I hope to paint the fan white, too.

You may be asking yourself why I didn't go with the green and pink theme to match RQ's bedroom that I originally had in my mind when I started planning this. (Or, you probably really don't care...) Unfortunately, it is not in our budget to purchase the futon or sleeper sofa we eventually would like to add to the room and I am not handy enough with fabric to cover a sofa on my own. I don't like slip covers because they always bulge and wrinkle... so- I had to work with the loud colors on the couch that used to be in the sun room at mom and dad's beach house. I'm talking orange, blue, green, red... yes, LOUD. But, I managed to make it work for now and when we get a solid couch/futon in there one day, it will still all work! 

I'm thinking pink curtains and pink/orange pillow cases

dear couch, you will one day be removed. ;)

I originally painted the sign for her door, but I like it better in here. If anyone is interested in me doing a "how to" on the paper flowers, just let me know. :)

I think mommy may enjoy the chalk for a while before RQ knows how!

planning to hide those cords from the tv, paint the book case (and add the books!) and cover the pillows

I wanted to keep the owl/bird theme going and the painting at target was $30--- so I made my own :)

Next project = office/closet! I can't wait to get started!

~let go laughing!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Dear Riley Quinn - 9 months!

Dear Riley Quinn,
I cannot believe a whole 3/4 of a year have gone by since you have been with us. I am so in love with you and fall more and more in love with you every single day. You have been such a blessing to all of us. It has been a huge month for you! You had your first 4th of July, spent pretty much the entire month (minus about 4 days) at the beach, had your baptism on the island and got lots and lots of loving from everyone. You really missed your daddy when he was home working and you were at the beach, but you had so much fun talking to him on facetime. 
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You love to sleep in your pack-n-play at the beach house. You sleep so well there. In fact, the last two days we have been home, you are not happy to be back in your room. I don't know why- You are in your own room there too, but maybe you just miss the beach. :( Normally, you are sleeping from 9pm-8ish am and taking two naps each day about an hour to an hour and a half long. You are eating everything mommy and daddy eat now. You absolutely LOVE blueberries, zucchini and squash. You have SEVEN teeth. Four on the top and three on the bottom. 

You love your new playroom at home. Mommy and daddy are working hard to decorate it all pretty for you, but you really don't care and you are happy that all your toys are in there. You also made your first "craft" at story time yesterday with Dillon and Dylan! You made a turtle (of course mommy helped!) and it is on the fridge now. I wish I had gotten a picture of you sitting in the little tiny chair listening to Ms. Ellen read the story to you. It was so stinkin' cute, but made me kinda sad to see how grown you looked. I love you Riley Quinn and I can't say that enough. I can't imagine my life without you. You are my everything, sweet girl. 

I hope you always stay as happy as you are now and share that happiness with everyone just as you do now. I love you sweet girl.




Monday, July 23, 2012

projects well on the way... photo bomb

We got started on operation playroom today! RQ and I needed to come home for a few days to be with daddy. She (and I) was missing him a lot! I cleaned out the closet that we're doing a built in desk in yesterday as soon as we got home. Today after story time, RQ napped while I cleaned out my huge desk and moved all the "stuff" we needed (printer, lamp, files, etc.) into the closet until we can get a light and an outlet put in. Then we will build the desk and add a few more shelves! 

Michael and I got that HUGE desk out of the house and into the truck all by ourselves. Be proud. For real- it was heavy. I immediately gathered all of her toys and put them in there. It has a long way to go, but it's a start. 

here is the closet we are turning into an office. I can't believe it was so easy to clean out. I was shocked! 

here is the reason we needed a playroom ;)

 Lots of plans ahead for the room! Paint, cushion covers, curtains, canopy/tent and more. This was the first picture I took when she woke up from her nap. 

this is the first phase of operation playroom :)

Here is a better view-

Plans so far:
  • replace blue paint with green to match the scheme of her room now. 
  • large pink stripe around the center of the room. thicker than the yellow stripe- almost from the yellow stripe to the bottom of the window.
  • leaving the bottom beige 
  • chalkboard paint wall
  • take down/ relocate diplomas and Marine corps things
  • gallery mounts for her artwork 
  • green fabric with small white polka dots to cover pillows and do curtains
  • couch cover (eventually want a futon or pull out sofa)
  • new foam mats to cover the floor (pink and green)
  • and oh so much more! 
It is nowhere close to what I want the final product to look like and I think it even looks better now that I have somewhat organized it after RQ went to bed, but it just feels nice to have all of most of her toys in a central location and a place where we can sit and play and I don't have to constantly re-direct her away from the fireplace or electronics... I'm so excited to sit and play with her tomorrow morning while we watch Kelly! :)

this is our living room back to normal! 

and this was story time this morning with the three red heads :)

goodnight- let go laughing~

Thursday, July 19, 2012

my husband hates me....

Well, not really. But, I have decided we have a lot of DIY home projects coming our way. I cannot wait to get started! Ready to hear the plans?!?!?! Drum roll pleassssssssssssse....

We are making Riley Quinn a play room! That's right- that old guest room turned office, is now turning into a play room! I don't work (Ok, I tutor, but I don't need an office for that...) and Michael has an office out of the home. Although, we do need a desk for my computer/ sewing machine. So guess what that means... not just ONE home improvement/ makeover- but two!

Are you ready to see my mood boards thanks to google images- (I would have searched pinterest, but it stresses me out for big projects.) I'm sure these projects will take a while since our budget is well... zero. Ok, whatever we can get out of selling the desk, maybe? haha.

We are going to turn our front coat closet into my office/sewing room home. :) Nanny turned her closet into a wine bar a long time ago and I got the idea- I have finally talked M into it and I am so excited! 

We really only need a desk space and room for a filing cabinet and some shelves. We will have to wire it for an outlet and I'm thinking maybe a small DIY chandelier of some sort for the light! I doubt we will paint it anytime soon, but one day it will get the full feel of the first picture. (we hope...)

M laughs, because I am already starting him on this project before our laundry room even has the shelves we have been planning for a year now, but that's OK. Gotta take baby steps and do what we can afford as we go. I'm sure it will all finally be finished when we get to the point we are ready to re-model and add on. To me, that's the fun of owning an old home. I love it! We have done SO much to our house and I just love doing more and more. 

For the playroom- I have tons and tons of huge pillows that were in my old classroom. Can those be dry cleaned? I want to make some cute pillow cases for them. I'm going to paint the walls and we may or may not get a slip cover for the love seat and leave it in there. One wall will either have big circles, chevrons or stripes and the other three walls will be solid. I kind of want to do pink walls. I figure if we have another baby at all, it will be another 3-4 years (at least that is what we I want.) At that point we will turn it into a nursery if we haven't added on yet, so it really can be all Riley's for now. And don't forget monograms! I plan to paint a huge rSq on the wall too! Oh, so many ideas running through my crazy mind right now. I basically want something big and spacious where we can all hang out and not worry if RQ will get hurt on the fireplace or other things. We know she will eventually have a kitchen set or a mini castle of some sort, so why let it take over the whole living room (like it is now...)?! I'm thinking of doing a hoola-hoop castle out of sheets and tulle for a corner too. With lots of pillows and books in it. Little L and W who I used to babysit had an adorable one and I loved watching them play in it! We're even thinking about making one at Gigi and Pawpaws beach house for RQ and her cousins to play in together. 

Anywho- time to stop my brain for a little while. Feel free to send playroom ideas our way! I can't wait! I'm so glad hubby finally said YES!!!!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

my first 5K

So, anyone who reads my blog somewhat frequently, knows I consider myself a runner. In middle school, I played softball and the track coach wanted me on the team... I stayed on the softball team and in hindsight, if you knew my softball team... I should have run track. We might have won one game the two years I played. Go Vikings! (Insert sarcastic eye roll here.) Anyway- I have always loved to run and wanted to do a 5K since before I ever even got pregnant. The time has finally come and last month, Michael, Autumn and I all registered for our very first 5K! Did I mention this sweet face and her little buddy Miss E are both joining us in their joggers?! 

yep- she's stoked too! 

I've been training hard and running pretty much every day for two months now. I took today off and possibly a couple more soon per advice from some friends of mine who said my body needed some rest. I felt like poop for not running today and to motivate myself, mom and I went into Finish-Line to exchange her new running shoes and she got me this little gem! "I'm sexy and I know it..." No but really, I love this shirt and I might just wear it every day. I'm feeling SO good since I have started working out for real this time and not just for a month or three weeks. I have the motivation and even though the scale may not be moving down, I feel fantastic. Although I enjoy running daily, I have read that it is not the best for me and with a bum knee and hip already, I don't want to overdo it. I may start an on three, off 1 or on four, off one routine. Or on 7 off 2... Any advice on that? Once I start tutoring again, I probably wont go 1 or 2 of those mornings, but we will see... I plan to do my island runs well into November for sure! 

I am so excited for November! I have wanted to do this run since I saw a friend from HS do it last year. It just looked like so much fun. I was waiting and waiting and waiting for registration to pop up and it finally did. It sold out quick too! I am so thankful we got registered on the first day! I was in the car when I got the call from Autumn saying it was up and I immediately got on and signed us all up and payed our dues! Dude! Tell me this doesn't look like the most awesome fun ever?!?!?!?!?!

The best part is that boogie will be going with me!!!!

I got my shoes this week too! I went back to for a couple of days to grab the jogging stroller, drop daddy-o back off to get back to hard work after his vacation and to get me some new running shoes since I am in it for the long haul now! I love these babies and let me tell you, they feel awesome. I first bought the grey because they didn't have the pink ones I wanted. I couldn't decide so I drove across town to try on a pair of pink ones and I didn't like them as much. I went BACK to the first store where the AMAZING salesperson (Finish Line at Southpoint) found the original ones I wanted in my size after all. He felt so bad, but was so super that it didn't matter. (Today when we went back to exchange moms, not only did he remember me and what size I bought for mom... he asked where Riley was?! He called her by name... now THAT is customer service!)

Anyway- I liked the pink like woah, but I really liked these and since I told Michael the day I started running that I wanted neon running shoes and shorts... I had to get these. Plus, I think they will totally match all of my running clothes. Did I mention they weigh about as much as a paper towel?! They're awesome. Period. I even got some neon socks to go with them. Pink, orange and green! I cannot wait to run in these babies on the flat island. I swear just those two days running back in kicked my butt. Our neighborhood has zero flat roads! 

Time to hit the hay so I can get up and hit the pavement in the morning! 

~let go laughing! 

summer is here!!!

It is officially summer! Yes, my summer starts when BB starts! (OK, and July 4th...)

BB14 started tonight! I am STOKED that Brit is back this year to be a coach. I am also a bit partial to Mike Boogie for obvious reasons. :) (think names, folks!) I do LOVE Brit though, so I think I'm pulling for her team for now. So, I'm only 30 minutes into the first episode and I already like Willy and the dark haired southern chick too. Jojo and Ashley bug me... 

Mind you these are all just first impressions, I could totally change my mind...

I have to say, I have watched the last bazillion (ok- like maybe 8) seasons here on my little island of love. It really makes me miss my  "big brother," Big Brian. We used to watch all the episodes together over on mom and dads couch. I miss him so much. I know he is smiling down on us though! Still riding around on that "scoot scoot." 

Anywho- I am off to finish watching! I'll be back to catch you all up on life and my favorite new workout gear soon! :)

~let go laughing!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

staying in shape and proud of it

Yesterday was my first day in over three weeks that I have not run. This heat has been unbearable, but I have kept up with my routine and I feel so incredible. It was time for a day off and I needed to get RQ ready for her baptism.

I am not trying to brag (or maybe I am - because hey, I am proud!) but since I have been sharing my pregnancy weight loss journey for 8 months now, I thought I would keep sharing now that I finally am feeling comfortable in my own skin again. Yes, a lot of my weight fell right off after pregnancy and I only needed to lose 4 lbs to be back to my pre-pregnancy weight when RQ was three weeks old. Then came Thanksgiving, Christmas...  and then Vegas.  Needless to say, I was back in my clothes, but they were a littler tighter than I wanted them to be. No, I was not fat and am not one of those "I'm fat 'skinny' girls" - you know what I'm talking about. I've never said I was fat, I just wanted to be more fit and in shape.

So I started back running. I have always been a runner, but never quite kept up with it after college. I would run a couple of days and then stop for 3 weeks, run a week and stop for a month, etc. I ran all of January and got every bit of my weight off and was getting back in shape and felt great. But like I said... then came Vegas. I gained several pounds in the month of May. Really. I did. I have managed to get it off and I am proud of it. I am going back to to grab my jogging stroller tomorrow so I can start to get used to pushing that. Now that I've gotten better at my run, I can add that to strengthen my arms. I am also planning to push RQ in the 5K in November! I cannot wait to run in it! I am so glad I have a goal to look forward to and push me not to stop running like I have sometimes in the past. I know when I go back to d. town and start tutoring 2 days a week at the end of August, it may cut out a couple of days, but I am aiming for 5 out of seven even though most weeks I am going 7/7!

Here I am today and I finally can feel my hard work paying off . My runs are not as difficult and I am slowly adding distance and increasing my times. My clothes don't feel tight and I feel great. I even feel more relaxed and happy each day! I hope the weather forecast for rain the next 10 days on my little island doesn't throw me off too horribly bad! Plus, it is time to strengthen my arms with the jogger and RQ!

I also want to give a huge shout out to my mom who is running with me most days! It's wonderful to have a partner and it helps to keep us both motivated. (And thanks to Grandy and Daddy for watching RQ while we have been running all those mornings!)

Here's to all the runners out there bearing this heat! Stay hydrated and happy, friends. :)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Riley Quinn's Baptism

Riley was baptized today and it was an incredible ceremony. She was baptized at the church here on the island. It's a non-denominational chapel with traveling ministers. We picked a weekend with a Methodist minister since I was raised in a Methodist church and we hope to find one at home soon for our little family. Riley Quinn wore her daddy's baptism gown and it was beautiful. Pastor Jon Strother was incredible. I wish he had a church near us, because both Michael and I agreed we loved him! He is the Methodist superintendent of the Raleigh area, so he does not have his own congregation.

The ceremony was beautiful and Riley Quinn was wonderful for the whole thing. (Even though it was right at nap time!) She was baptized with water from the sound right outside of the church which is a mile away from our house. It couldn't have been any more perfect. So many of our friends and relatives were there, including both sets of grandparents, one set of great grandparents, second cousins, great uncle, uncles, God parents and sisters and the rest of our island family. It was so wonderful to know all of the support we have in raising Riley Quinn to be a good Christian girl.

After the baptism, we had homemade ice cream and finger sandwiches at mom and dad's house. We planned to do it at our house, but it was just too hot to be outside and there is more room to be inside at mom and dad's. We really appreciate everyone being a part of today and thank you for all of the well wishes from those of you who were not in town but are also helping us to raise our sweet girl.

Here are some photos from Riley Quinn's special day.

this is the bib Emalyn's mother tatted for RQ

smiling as usual

she talked, giggled and babbled for most of the ceremony...

water from the sound

Pastor Jon Strother baptizing Riley Quinn

Walking around to everyone after the water 

everyone after the ceremony

Riley Quinn's absolutely wonderful, incredible God parents

and sisters!

ma lolo, grandy, nanny and papa

My side of the family

both sets of grandparents

both sets of grandparents and Pastor Strother

the table at the house, set up for after the baptism

Thursday, July 5, 2012

PAR-TAY! (yes, another photo bomb)

Party rockin' in the house tolast night...

summer being....summer

kids games

family photo and rq wondering where the heck all these people came from while she was napping...

buddies for life.

RQ and her gigi

sack race

i got some good air. lol

jewels was on my team too

i made the cake this year :)

the magician was AMAZING.
Annnnd- Katie got engaged!!!