Monday, October 31, 2011


So I mentioned that I had other plans for the rest of the chair fabric. Here it is! I made a matching table runner to help tie in the color scheme. Our 8 foot table is WAAAY too long for any conventional tablecloth to ever cover it, so I decided I was going to make table runners for different seasons, etc, to change the look. So this is the first one!I made it reversible! Just for fun!

This is the first time I've ever tried to make anything reversible, and it requires more care and precise attention to detail than I usually use when sewing. When you look closely, there are spots where you can tell from the top what the underneath material is, but it's mostly hidden!
I also bought material to make a fall table runner, and James kindly pulled the Christmas tablecloth out of the attic, so I'm going to make the fall/Christmas ones reversible, too. I haven't started it yet, but hopefully soon. Since it's fall now and everything. :)

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Dining Room Chairs

Our dining room is coming together! For months we've had our random mismatched chairs, but I was waiting for the temperature to dip below 90 degrees so I could paint them! Finally, about two weeks ago, we got a few days of a cool tease, and I pulled out the paint!

I bought a set of 4 of these chairs for $30 at a resale shop clearing out their inventory. They were originally asking $60, which I sure wouldn't have done, knowing how much work I would have to do, but for the price (I was looking for less than $10 per chair), even though I wasn't crazy about their look, I was sold!
I sanded them down to help the paint stick.

Since I planned to "build" a cushion, I didn't need to remove the seat (good thing-I looked at it and was not at all sure it was even possible). I painted the parts that would be showing.
Here's another before-this is the chair I had to repair after we rescued it from a trash pile. I don't think I have a before picture for the last chair.
Here are the afters! One of each type:

True confession: I'm not crazy about the way the "cushion building" worked out. I had used foam on the bench I built, and that turned out great, but foam is expensive and I wanted to try to cheat the system. So I bought some seat cushions on big sale at Ross and planned to take them apart and use them. Turns out they were just filled with stuffing, which when I moved around was really just lumpy. So I had to try a couple different ways, and I landed on one that seemed the most comfy and the smoothest, but if you look close, they're still puckered where all the staples pull the cloth tight. I don't love them, but I didn't want to keep messing with it, and they're not too bad. And I didn't want to use any more of the fabric cuz I had other plans for it (see the next post).
So, all together, here's our little family of dining room seating:
We like how it turned out!!!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Pumpkin Carving

This weekend, we set out to carve our pumpkin. Pumpkin patch pictures are coming soon, they're super cute, but they're on James' computer from his fancy camera and he's adjusting light and color balance stuff. :)

First, James took a "what's your pumpkin carving style?" survey online. It was not helpful at all.
Next, we decided to carve a big "W" for "Wise" in our pumpkin, and then we decided to be clever. Our Waco friends should recognize the design we chose. James carefully mapped it out on the pumpkin, trying to include enough support so that the star wouldn't fall out.
(for you non-Wacoans, this is the City of Waco logo)

Next, Elijah put on his super cool shades and got his little pumpkin ready.
While Daddy cut off the top of the big pumpkin, Elijah investigated what his little pumpkin was like. He used many of his five senses, including smell:
We're thankful Daddy is on our side.
Elijah wasn't too interested in getting the seeds out of the pumpkin.
He doesn't really like to get his hands dirty.
So, Mama put Elijah down for a nap while Daddy scooped out the seeds. Then Mama made DELICIOUS toasted pumpkin seeds while Daddy went to work carving the W on the pumpkin.

I wish we had taken pictures of the various mishaps that took place during this event. Suffice it to say that I laughed so hard I had tears streaming down my face and dripping off my nose. Basically, James went back and forth between, "Oh, dang!" to "YES!" and "Shoot!" to "Boo-yah!" You may have seen some facebook cries for help that he sent out, and Trina actually came to the rescue suggesting toothpicks to hold some pieces back together. James combined this technique with super glue, which led to the truly hilarious part of the day. I was working on a sewing project, and then I hear him say, "Oh, no, now we have to go to the emergency room!" as he got up and rushed to the kitchen sink. I threw down what I was working on to follow him, asking, "What happened? Did you cut yourself?" He didn't answer me, so naturally I assumed the worst. Imagine my response when I arrive at the sink and he looks up to explain, "I super glued my fingers together!" And here I thought something was wrong...

After all our adventures, here's the finished product, though I don't have a picture of it lit up at night.

Happy fall!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Playing on the Big Bed

Video removed to conserve storage space

Recently Elijah went through a phase where he was constantly asking to be up on our bed. Once there, he'd just fall and roll all over the place. So far, this is the closest thing Daddy is getting to wrestling with his little boy! Elijah chills out as soon as we turn on the video camera, but you can still tell how much he's enjoying this game!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Playground Video

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More fun playing at the playground! This video starts with Elijah's favorite new trick: identifying his new baby brother or sister!! :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Independence (Almost)

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Elijah has finally mastered the playground steps and slide mostly on his own. We still keep him from falling down the steps backwards, but he's finally pulling himself up the steps. I love how his physical milestones happen seemingly all of a sudden. One day he can't, the next day he can! Soooo fun!!! :)

Sunday, October 16, 2011


I've been realizing something sweet lately. I am Elijah's best friend. I laugh at his jokes, I know what he loves, I understand (sometimes) what he's trying to communicate, and I spend TONS of time with him. I know it won't always be this way, but it's sweet to know that he really enjoys playing with me and being with me. I love this little man so much.

I've been really proud of him this weekend. We've spent lots of time with different friends from church, and he's actually been interacting with some of them! He typically gets super shy and hides his face in our shoulders, but he's finally been warming up! He played football with friends yesterday, played with another little boy during dinner, even chasing each other and hugging each other, he went willingly to his little class at church this morning without even crying! I'm thrilled!

Here he's trying on Daddy's ratty outside shoes:
Superman in the living room!
I've been getting Veggie Tales movies from the local library. Sometimes they don't play on our TV (?!?!), so I play them on my computer for him. Here he's cozy in his little chair with some good friends, watching his favorite show!
He loves kisses from Jewel!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

All Boy

Lately James and I have been noticing how very much Elijah is ALL boy. He is gaining confidence in his walking and doesn't like to stay on the sidewalk, instead figuring out secure footing on the hills and muddy plains around the sidewalk. He loves to explore! He's finding little trails through the trees, branches with leaves, and especially any place water likes to collect! Today has been memorable: he face-planted on the concrete hard enough to get his first bloody nose! It wasn't a bad one, but I was able to get some proof on film:

Now that he's cleaned up, he actually is sporting a little bit of a Rudolph-the-Red-Nosed-Reindeer look, with slightly scuffed nose and chin:
Another memorable aspect of today (really this whole week) is that he is coming back from walks with MUDDY shoes! We're having to leave his shoes outside. What a switch from months (over a year, actually!) of never even putting shoes on him because his little feet never touched the ground! :)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


EZ definitely knows how to get his point across. I know that eventually he will use words, but for now, he has some cute little motions and he makes sure we know what he wants!

--Bubbles! EZ loves playing with bubbles these days. It just clicked with him that he can ask for them (woo-hoo!). He reaches towards the door to the backyard and makes this blowing, spitting action with his mouth while he looks at me. "See, Mom, I know how you make the bubbles!" The funny thing is that anytime I hold the wand out for him to try blowing his own bubbles, he opens his mouth to try to eat it. We're not quite there yet...but he knows how I'm doing it, I guess!

--Chapstick! Elijah has found the tube of chapstick that James sometimes keeps on his nightstand, and he's so cute as he asks for it and we put it on him! When he wants chapstick, he opens his mouth and sticks his finger around inside. It's kind of hard to distinguish from his toothbrush motion, actually, except that his mouth stays open. And then when we get it out, he opens his mouth while we dab the chapstick on him, than obediently smacks his lips like we ask him to.

--Phone! As previously related, Elijah now has a phone he plays with. He bends his elbow by his ear when he wants to play with his phone-I guess he's seeing us use our phones and is figuring out where they go! Today I've even been noticing that when I talk on the phone, he does that motion-he knows that's what I'm doing and wants to participate! When I offer him the phone (I think I've mostly done this so far when it's James on the phone), he then tries to take it and push the buttons, so he's not quite ready for talking on the phone much yet!

--Lotion! Whenever Elijah walks past his diaper changing station and sees the lotion or the hand sanitizer, he looks excitedly at me and rubs his hands together. He LOVES getting a tiny little squirt of lotion on one hand, but then it takes him to decide to rub it with the other hand. Silly boy! And as soon as he's done that, he wants more. Um, no.

--iPod! EZ used to ask for music by dancing a little. Now he points to his ear, or even folds his ear down a little, while pointing at the iPod dock. He does the ear thing a lot when he's focused on what he hears-a bus going by, the trash truck, Jewel barking, etc. He's isolating that sense of hearing!

--Toothbrush! In his bathroom or in ours, if Elijah sees a toothbrush or toothpaste, or even sometimes when he doesn't, he puts his finger in his mouth and rubs his teeth. I think he closes his mouth around his finger, if I'm remembering correctly, so it's barely different from the chapstick request! We always brush teeth after a bath, so sometimes it's as soon as he gets in the bathtub that he starts asking to brush his teeth! "Not just yet, buddy!"

He's a great communicator! I love this little guy and can't wait for the chance to learn more and more what he's thinking!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Dancing and Shushing

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Some of EZ's great dance moves. Squeezed in here is his latest trick-shushing the dog! I sound really harsh as I'm doing it in the movie, but I'd like to think it's cuz I'm trying to get him to copy me? :)