Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Happy 1/2 Birthday!

In typical Nikki-fashion, I'm 2 days late posting this...

 Dear Nate.
Today is your 2 1/2 year old birthday. You have changed SO much over the past six months.  Where has my little Nater Tot gone? He's been replaced by such a big boy.

Your vocabulary has grown by leaps and bounds....your dad and I can't keep up! Every day you surprise us with a new word or phrase. These are some of my current favorites that you say pretty frequently:

"I say cheers sometimes."
"Tinkle Tinkle little star, 'ow I under ut eee ahhh."
"That's sooo wonderful." (or sooo cute or sooo sweet.)
"Nathan can do it."
"Mommy go get the chocolate."

 You are still on the timid side and aren't sure of things outside of your comfort zone. I completely understand & can relate to this side of you but I hope to help you grow into a confident, self-assured young man.

On the homefront, you love being outside, don't mind taking a bath, and are a fabulous sleeper. As for eating....well, challenging is the word that comes to mind. We'd love to get you to eat things like pasta, pizza, and a PB & J sandwich, but you'll have none of it. I hope the future brings some changes in this area :)

Nathan, we couldn't be prouder of you and are so blessed to be your mom and dad. Our hearts burst with love for you.

Texas Forever

Friday Night Lights.
Yes, it's a show about high school football.
Yes, it's a show about a drab, little Texas town.'s also a show about people. I love these people.
Seriously, I have become totally vested in the people of Dillon, Texas.
I love their big hearts, their determination, bad choices, good choices, funny moments.
Friday Night Lights has become my Lost, my 24, my Six Feet Under.
When the show ends in 2 weeks, I'm going to need to seek grief counseling*.

Let's backtrack -- Friday Night Lights started on NBC in 2006. It immediately received critical acclaim but had trouble finding an audience. That remained the story for the next four years. To date, media giants like Time Magazine have called it the best show on television. I didn't discover this show until last year. Yes, I was late to the party. I had certainly heard about it and have been a fan of Kyle Chandler (one of the show's main stars) for a very long time. But I never made any effort to watch it. So now I'm getting caught up. I've watched the first four seasons on Netflix since last Fall. The fifth season is airing right now on DirectTV and will replay on NBC over the summer. And then it ends. That's hard for me to believe. I hope my enthusiasm for this show encourages you to seek out the "little engine show that could."

*Lee will be joining me in my grief. He just started watching the show (I think he got tired of hearing me say "you've GOT to watch this show!") and just gave in. He didn't like it at first -- and that led to a whole discussion about why women like tv dramas more than men but that's an entirely separate post -- but now he is hooked. 

Friday, January 21, 2011


The highlight of my week was Nate knocking on our large, outdoor trash can and saying, very sweetly, "Oscar? Where are you?" over and over.

Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Peach Fuzz???

I'm not going to forget this conversation. I'd like to but I won't. Thank goodness he's adorable and charming.

Nate, pointing to Lee: "Daddy has beard!"
Nate, pointing to me: "Mommy has moustache!"

Garden 2011

I'm wearing a t-shirt, shorts and sandals today. Yes, it's a lovely 80 degree day in SoCal. This isn't typical -- we usually have mild weather in January but nothing like this. I'm enjoying it very much but it does play with your mind a little. I have to remind myself that this does not mean that Spring is around the corner. We'll probably see more rain and chilly nights in the coming months. In the meantime, I can't help but daydream about planting some more herbs and flowers in the backyard. Do you remember our sunflowers from 2 years ago? Check them out here. I'm going to order a variety of sunflower seeds from Baker Creek this year and plant them along our fence. I'm excited to try some different kinds and see what pops up. Baker Creek, incidentally, is amazing. If you plant tomatoes or flowers or anything else, you've got to check out their catalog. After looking at the beautiful pictures and reading the seed descriptions, trust me, you'll want to tear up your yard and create a massive garden. I would -- but I don't think my landlady would appreciate that ;-)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Thank You Randomness

Nate has developed the habit of picking up things he knows he's not suppose to handle (mommy's sunglasses, daddy's phone, etc.) and bringing them to us. He says "thank you!" very loudly as he attempts to hand us the contraband item. So the other day, while I was standing at the stove and making french toast, I heard his voice behind me. "Thank you!" he says. I turn around to see this:

That would be part of our floor furnace. I don't know why he felt the need to take it off and bring it to me but whatever. And let me tell you, that sucker is heavy. If he had dropped it on his toes, well, he would have been one unhappy camper. And if you're freaking out about it being hot -- no need. The floor furnace doesn't work and hasn't been used since this old house had forced air/heat installed years and years ago. It's now just a lovely thing that collects dust bunnies.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Nate's Table

A very long time ago, a sweet lady from our church gave us a child's table with 2 chairs. She had it in her house for her grandchildren. I appreciated her generosity and was touched that she thought of our family. That being said, the design of the table didn't really match the decor of our house so I decided to strip the table & chairs and repaint them. I didn't have any idea what I wanted the table to look like when I was done so it took me a while to come up with a plan. I only hoped to have it finished before my son reached high school(!!) Also, I only had about 3 hours a week to work on it...and that had to be during decent weather since the table was in our {unattached} garage. So here is the before picture that I took -- I kid you not -- back in April 2010:

Noah's Ark themed table & chairs. Plaid blue/green & yellow.

And -- ta da -- here it is after I finished -- again, I kid you not -- in January 2011 (that would be 9 months. Sick, I know):

The colored detail is heavy-duty fabric, glued on with Modge Podge (my fist MP project!). I had thought about sewing seat cushions out of the fabric but chickened out. I'm really happy with the results! Of course, Nate hasn't even given it a second glance but that's okay. (actually, he cried when he saw it because he was mad that he didn't get to help me glue on the "1" and the "2". Sigh.) I hope he'll eventually use it for working on art projects, reading books, etc.

I'm linking this post up to:
The DIY Show Off
Furniture Feature Fridays

Thursday, January 6, 2011

A Cozy for My Kindle

I'm a very lucky girl. For Christmas, my family conspired together and got me a Kindle and a couple digital books. It was an unexpected and delightful surprise! I still love the feel and smell(!) of printed paper but, I must say, digital books are pretty great too. I used it today on my commute to and from work and it was so easy to pull out of my purse on the lightweight Kindle will come in handy when I eventually tackle Mark Twain's 760-page autobiography (3.7 pounds -- ouch!)

Now I need to get a protective case for my Kindle. Obviously, I can pop on over to Amazon and buy one. Or....duh, I could make one. A bounty of tutorials are at my fingertips via the Internet. So, what do you think of this one:

It would be fun (and practical!) to use up some fabric scraps for this mini-quilt case but I'm not a quilter. I know, I know -- it looks basic but remember my skills are subpar. It would also require more time than, say, this one:

This one is a little easier to manage. Plus, she laminated the fabric to keep it from getting dirty-- how genius?? Here's another:

 Nice contrasting edge to this one. Clean lines. What about:

I love that this one resembles a book but, again, it may be out of my range of expertise. Which brings us to the following -- if I was a sewing maverick, I'd make this...

Isn't she beautiful? The extra pockets take my breath away. Of course, I can't find the source of this picture now - my apologies to whoever made it. Just as well since its design is WAY beyond me. Oh well. I hope to get started on my Kindle case soon. And, with any luck, it'll be done and ready to use by June or July. Yes, it really does take me that long to complete a project....

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Hello 2011.

Happy New Year!

If you still have your Christmas tree, I just read about a neat tradition: cut a small block off the bottom of your tree, save it, and then burn it in your fireplace next Christmas. You could burn it on the first day of Advent or Christmas Day and talk about the true meaning of Christmas or your favorite Christmas memories from years' past. Doesn't that sound lovely? I hope to share more traditions on my blog this year. In the meantime, enjoy this first week of 2011!