Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Teacher Appreciation

I planned to blog about our beach trip and Memorial Day weekend tonight but it has been a crazy day and I just do not have the energy.  Also, Craft has randomly decided to stop sleeping through the night (more on that later) and it has been a rough few nights of torture with that little stinker so I'm exhausted.  In other words, that long-@$$ post will have to wait for another night!

This is Lilly's last week of preschool for the year, and I am so sad about it. We were so fortunate that she has had the best teachers, and she loves them so much (as do we!). I just know I'm going to cry, I wish they could move up with her next year.  

All of the parents got a note from the program director just prior to teacher appreciation week a few weeks ago which said that the program decided a long time ago that the huge amount of parental support and involvement throughout the year makes them feel more appreciated than any gifts ever could, so please not to send any gifts for teacher appreciation week. I wanted to send something anyway but honestly could not get it together in time to do anything, so I decided that I'd give Lilly's teachers something at the end of the year instead to let them know how much we love them and how much we appreciate them loving our child.  

I pinned something on Pinterest a while back that involved a potted plant that was housed in a planter covered in chalkboard paint that said (in chalk) "thank you for helping me grow."  That pin was the original inspiration behind our gift, but after I told Carney about it and we brainstormed she helped me come up with this instead: 


Are those cute, or what?!  And they were pretty easy to make. We took a trip to Michaels and Home Depot today to pick up supplies and let Lilly help choose flowers ("she" chose dwarf sunflowers with urging from Carney and myself because they're adorable).  Carney put two coats of white spray paint on the planters (I did the first coat but I sprayed too close and was on the verge of ruining them so Carney took over) while Lilly was napping and when she got up we used her thumb and made the pink and yellow thumb prints. The thumb printing was by far the hardest step in the whole process - Lilly didn't understand why she couldn't use her paint brush to paint and had to be bribed with ice cream, oy. After she went to bed I drew the stems and wings with paint markers and then sealed the pots (spray paint sealer which dried in approximately 10 seconds) and planted the flowers. I think they turned out so cute!!!

We did bees for Ms. B (get it? B/bee?!):

 
And we did flowers for Ms. Joanne:


The "garden flags" with the notes contain a small gift certificate (I went with Belk in case you're curious. I know Ms B loves it and so do I, and I figured they were more likely to spend the gift card on themselves at Belk instead of on their kids!).

So, there you have it!  I am so pleased with the way these turned out and can't wait for Lilly to see the finished product when she wakes up.  BIG props to Carney for all of her creativity and help!  I hope Lilly's teachers will love them too (and that they will understand the amount of will power it's taking for me to actually give these away because they're so cute!).  They really were very easy and would make great gifts for anyone special in your child's life. So, you're welcome. :-)

Teacher Appreciation

I planned to blog about our beach trip and Memorial Day weekend tonight but it has been a crazy day and I just do not have the energy.  Also, Craft has randomly decided to stop sleeping through the night (more on that later) and it has been a rough few nights of torture with that little stinker so I'm exhausted.  In other words, that long-@$$ post will have to wait for another night!

This is Lilly's last week of preschool for the year, and I am so sad about it. We were so fortunate that she has had the best teachers, and she loves them so much (as do we!). I just know I'm going to cry, I wish they could move up with her next year.  

All of the parents got a note from the program director just prior to teacher appreciation week a few weeks ago which said that the program decided a long time ago that the huge amount of parental support and involvement throughout the year makes them feel more appreciated than any gifts ever could, so please not to send any gifts for teacher appreciation week. I wanted to send something anyway but honestly could not get it together in time to do anything, so I decided that I'd give Lilly's teachers something at the end of the year instead to let them know how much we love them and how much we appreciate them loving our child.  

I pinned something on Pinterest a while back that involved a potted plant that was housed in a planter covered in chalkboard paint that said (in chalk) "thank you for helping me grow."  That pin was the original inspiration behind our gift, but after I told Carney about it and we brainstormed she helped me come up with this instead: 


Are those cute, or what?!  And they were pretty easy to make. We took a trip to Michaels and Home Depot today to pick up supplies and let Lilly help choose flowers ("she" chose dwarf sunflowers with urging from Carney and myself because they're adorable).  Carney put two coats of white spray paint on the planters (I did the first coat but I sprayed too close and was on the verge of ruining them so Carney took over) while Lilly was napping and when she got up we used her thumb and made the pink and yellow thumb prints. The thumb printing was by far the hardest step in the whole process - Lilly didn't understand why she couldn't use her paint brush to paint and had to be bribed with ice cream, oy. After she went to bed I drew the stems and wings with paint markers and then sealed the pots (spray paint sealer which dried in approximately 10 seconds) and planted the flowers. I think they turned out so cute!!!

We did bees for Ms. B (get it? B/bee?!):

 
And we did flowers for Ms. Joanne:


The "garden flags" with the notes contain a small gift certificate (I went with Belk in case you're curious. I know Ms B loves it and so do I, and I figured they were more likely to spend the gift card on themselves at Belk instead of on their kids!).

So, there you have it!  I am so pleased with the way these turned out and can't wait for Lilly to see the finished product when she wakes up.  BIG props to Carney for all of her creativity and help!  I hope Lilly's teachers will love them too (and that they will understand the amount of will power it's taking for me to actually give these away because they're so cute!).  They really were very easy and would make great gifts for anyone special in your child's life. So, you're welcome. :-)

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Craft's Birth Announcement

Where has this week gone?  I was just thinking today that it has flown by.  Just stopping back in to once again rave about Olive Paper and show off our STUNNING birth announcements now that I've finally mailed them out (she just had her website re-done, isn't it fabulous?!).  

I was SO. overwhelmed. about choosing a birth announcement.  I honestly had no idea what I wanted and every time I searched the internet for ideas I closed the browser pretty quickly because there were too many options and it made me even more overwhelmed.  It didn't help that I am in love with every single one of Craft's newborn photos and knew I was going to have a terrible time narrowing down which photos to use.  Enter Deb, who was her usual fabulous self.  She talked me into narrowing the photos down to two and using one for the front and one for the back, and she did the rest.  It was love at first sight with the very first design she sent me and I didn't even have any changes.  Behold:



Aren't they absolutely gorgeous?!  I die a little every time I see them, I love them so much.  I wish I could send one to everyone I've ever met in my whole life, because the photos don't even do these babies justice.  Seriously, y'all.  If you have ANY paper needs, check out Olive Paper - I pinky promise times infinity that you will not be disappointed.  We have now gotten invitations, birth announcements, stationary, and note pads from Olive Paper and have loved everything Deb has done for us.  She is so easy to work with and always seems to know just what I want even when I don't have a clue.  Thank you, thank you, thank you Deb for being amazing!

Tomorrow is Friday, and that means we're beach bound for the long weekend so I'll probably be on a blog hiatus for a few days, but I'll return with lots of photos and sappy crying blog posts about going back to work and leaving my babes.  :-)

Until next time!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Craft's Newborn Photos

Y'all.  I am kind of embarrassed that I am just now getting around to posting these considering little man will be four months old in two weeks.  I am also embarrassed to admit that I just now mailed his birth announcements (today).  It took me weeks to find the time to get them all addressed, and I finally stayed up late one night last week to finish and then it took me almost another week to mail them.  Whoopsie.  I'll post what they looked like for all to see in a few days after they've all had the chance to be delivered.  I'm sure you'll all be waiting with baited breath.  :-)

You may remember that my bestie Steph came to the hospital to snap some photos of C and me and luckily was there to witness Lills and Craft's first meeting.  I will cherish those photos forever and can't even look at them without getting weepy.  As if those photos aren't beautiful and unforgettable enough, she was also sweet enough to come to the house when Craft was a few days old (coincidentally also when she was about to pop pregnant with sweet Stephen) to take C's newborn pics as well.  I am not sure I can adequately put into words how proud I am of her and her business and the beautiful photos she takes.  She has captured more memories for me than I can count, and I'm so grateful.  IF (and that's a big one, and probably highly unlikely) there is another Baum baby, I've made her promise she'll be in the delivery room with me.  Anyway, I had a hard time narrowing down my favorites because they're all stunning, so I'll quit yapping and get to the photos.  And as usual, if you're in or around Raleigh, PLEASE check her out.  She's amaze!

We decided to start with the family photos because Lilly had just eaten and we were hoping she'd be happy and cooperative.  Aside from L doing her "cheeeeeeeeeese" face instead of a real smile, it went really well and with lots of bribery (m&m's, of course) Steph was able to get some really cute shots.






Melt!

Melt even more.




I think Craft looks so hilarious here.  He looks like he's thinking about pooping on his sister, or maybe he's planning the two poopsplosions he will have on Steph's props (sorry bestie!).

I'm really happy with the way the family pics turned out, I didn't think there was any way we'd be able to get any where everyone was looking and had somewhat normal expressions!







Big Sis stealing the show!
After Lilly was sufficiently sugared up as a reward for her cooperation, we headed back downstairs to get some photos of Craft by himself.  It's funny to look back and remember how. much. HAIR. this kid had.  He still has a lot now but gosh he had a ton when he was born.  So sweet!





We discovered, much to my dismay, that I didn't have any ASU hats that would fit C's big noggin.  Luckily, Steph came to the rescue.


Funny story: when I was pregnant with Lilly and we took our trip to Chicago, we went to a Cubs game.  I asked for nachos, and Dan brought them to me in this helmet.  Seriously, it was filled to the brim with nachos.  And we (mostly me, if we're being honest) ate every last one.  :-)







I'll eat you up, I love you so.  Maybe one of my favorite pictures.
So, friends, thanks for looking at pics of my cuuuuuute baby.  Hope you enjoyed them as much as I do (not possible I can assure you).  :-)


Monday, May 19, 2014

Makeover Monday

Howdy, friends.  Just wanted to hop on real quick like and RAVE about my blog's new look.  You likey?  I LOVEY.  My friend Quinn created this fantastic new design and I could not be happier with it.  Quinn has two of the prettiest and most darling little girls you will ever lay eyes on.  She also happens to be Carney's sister.  Carney, Quinn and the girls have pretty frequent play dates and my Lillian and Quinn's Ellington have become fast friends.  So, hop on over to Quinn's blog and check her out because she's amazing.  

Our weekend was pretty low-key, and I sadly don't really have any photos of our happenings.  Friday was our 5th wedding anniversary.  My mother- and father-in-law were nice enough to volunteer to come into town to watch the kiddies so that Dan and I could have an evening out.  We ate dinner at Mandolin and then tried a new dessert spot, Bittersweet.  Both were delicious and did not disappoint (and Bittersweet was also very trendy, it almost made me feel young again HA!).  We also used Uber so that neither of us had to drive = double score. We'd used the service before in NY, DC, ATL, etc. but it's new to Raleigh.  Definitely sign up if you haven't checked it out!

On Saturday, we packed up the kiddies and headed downtown to spend the morning at artsplosure, which is always a lot of fun.  My in-laws hit the road at nap time and we spent the rest of the day picking up and getting a few things done around the house.  The weather was glorious, so Saturday night after the kids were in bed, Dan set the hammock up in the back yard and we cozied up under blankets with wine and caught up on some TV on the iPad.  

We finished out the weekend by getting ready for the week.  On Sunday, we picked up around the house, did some laundry and a little reorganizing in the play room (my youngest sister, Syd, moved in yesterday and is staying for the summer to take classes at Wake Tech and help Carney with the kids until our nanny share ends in July), went to the farmer's market, grocery store, etc. and just took it easy.

Like I said, it was a low-key weekend but it was a good one!  I really enjoyed spending the weekend at home.  Reality is starting to set in because I realized today that I return to work in exactly two weeks.  It has been a wonderful (and long, thankfully!) maternity leave, and I'm having a hard time coping with the fact that it's ending in two short weeks.  More on that later.

Hope your weekend was great, too!  Don't forget to check Quinn out and tell her what a great job she did on my re-design.  Thanks a million, Quinn, you are amazing!


Friday, May 16, 2014

Goosewaddle Giveaway Winner!!!

Happy Friday, y'all!  And a great day it is indeed.  Dan and I are celebrating our 5th wedding anniversary today, wahoo!  Time sure flies when you're having fun.

Just popping in to congratulate the winner of my Goosewaddle giveaway: Sarah H!  Sarah, you will LOVE this blanket, I promise you.  I will be e-mailing you shortly to work out the details.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend!  I have some other fun giveaways coming up soon, so stay tuned.

Sarah

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Lilly Says

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, the North Carolina General Assembly is in session, which means my husband will be spending a good portion of his week nights at work for the next several weeks at least.  It seems like the only things Lilly will eat these days are yogurt and popcorn (of course that is an exaggeration but only a slight one, ha!), which is lucky for me because I refuse to cook for one person.  Plus, when I have both kiddies by myself I'm lucky to get them both fed, bathed and in bed with no injuries anyway.  Last night for dinner, Lilly had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, an apple, some blueberries, a string cheese and some pirate's booty.  I put her in her high chair and she immediately clasped her little hands together in front of her, gasped and said, 
"Oh, Mommy!  Look at this delicious lunch you made for me!"  
I am not sure why it tickled me so much - probably partially because I was tired and partially because it was clearly not a gourmet meal and I'd been feeling a little guilty about her having had grilled cheese for lunch and pb&j for dinner - but I laughed for a good 5 minutes.  This kid keeps me on my toes, y'all.


I know this picture is totally random, but I forgot to post it when I took it and thought L's bathtub masterpiece was cute.
Don't forget that the Goosewaddle giveaway ends tonight at midnight, so go enter if you haven't already.  It's almost the weekend, hooray!

Sarah

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Mother's Day 2014

Did ya think I'd left, never to return again?!  Luckily for you, I have to hang around at least until Friday to announce the winner of the Goosewaddle giveaway (so go enter if you haven't already!).  This has been a crazy week already!

Mother's Day weekend 2014 was fun- and family-filled, not to mention busy.  It flew by - I felt like I blinked and a week has passed.  We headed to Charlotte on Friday midday, and we made a pit stop in Greensboro to see Uncle Frankie graduate.



Lilly was so excited.  The ceremony was pretty small, and when Uncle Frankie walked across the stage she stood up on my legs and squealed, and right as the applause died down she started clapping her hands and saying, "YAY UNCLE FRANKIE!"  It was super cute.  Craft got some sweet snuggles, too!



After the graduation ceremony and a quick celebratory drink, we headed to my parents' house to spend the night.  Saturday morning, we headed to Concord for the rest of the day for my nephew's first communion.  There were three neighborhood friends who celebrated first communion on Saturday, so their parents all got together and rented out the club house and got a DJ.  Lilly had a BLAST. I am too lazy to upload the videos of her dancing tonight (unfortunately for her, she appears to have gotten her Mama's dance moves), so random pictures of my two kids at the party will have to suffice for now.


Lilly latched on to a baby doll that she found in Erica's room and danced with her all night long!  I think she was "changing the baby's diaper" here.

This girl is getting way too good at duck lips.  I asked her if she wanted to take a selfie and this is what she did, without prompting!  I'm gonna have my hands full, I think.



Again, Craft got some special attention from Grandma and Papa, and he loved watching all of the dancing!






Lilly had a BLAST at the party.  In fact, she has asked to "go to the dance party" every day since Saturday.  Needless to say, everyone slept well on Saturday night!

We didn't make a huge fuss on Mother's Day.  Since we attended mass on Saturday and were out late with the kids on Saturday night, we let them sleep in and just took it easy on Sunday morning.


 We also went uptown and met Dan's family for a Mother's Day lunch.







After lunch, Dan and Lilly headed home to Raleigh and Craft and I stuck around Charlotte for a few more days.  My Mom's lumpectomy was scheduled for Monday morning, so we wanted to be with her and help out around the house.  I sure did  miss them, but Dan sent me lots of pictures of all of the fun he and Lilly were having at home.


Like i said, the weekend was busy and family-filled but we had fun!  Mom's surgery went really well on Monday.  The doctors said there were no surprises and they were very pleased.  We are so thankful for all of the thoughts, prayers, and messages and I know Mom is happy to have this part of her journey behind her!


Team JJ
Poor Layla suffered multiple foot injuries in the form of torn paw pads while we were visiting Mimi and Paw Paw's.  Doesn't she look pitiful in this pic?  Not to worry, she appears to be on the mend.
Craft and I headed back to Raleigh on Tuesday morning and have spent the past two days getting back into our routine.  We've spent a lot of time outside enjoying the weather.



We played dress up with Lilly, who put on this "dress" (read: skirt) and informed me that she was ready to go to the dance party.  This kid is hilarious, I tell you!




C got some new moccs today and he is REAL excited about it.  If I were a follower of the Baum squad blog, I might want to stay tuned in the coming weeks.  Hint hint, wink wink. :-) 
Session started this week, which means I will be husband-less for the majority of the week for the next couple of months.  It also means that I will subsist on PB&J sandwiches or cereal for dinner, ha!  Anyway, I digress.  I've been putting L and C in the bath together and they both have a blast!  Craft LOVES his big sister and laughs out loud at her, and she is very sweet with him and wants to help bathe him.  Have I mentioned how much I love these two?!



Mimi got Lilly a new swimsuit cover-up, which Lilly insisted on wearing to bed because she thinks it is a nightgown.  What can I say?  She's 2, I wasn't about to argue.





So, now you're all caught up on our happenings!  I hope your week is off to a great start.  Stay tuned!  I'm off to enjoy a glass of wine and a book (nerd alert!).

Sarah

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