Thursday, April 28, 2011

Moms Know

For those of you who have been wondering, we did an IUI a little bit ago. I'll cut to the chase and just let you know that it didn't work. Even though we were kind of expecting this, (our chances are really not good with an IUI), it hurts just the same. The day we found out, I was grateful I didn't really have to talk to anyone. Cam packed me a star wars fruit snack and a note giving me some "Jedi Love" for the day. He is amazing.

We texted our parents and let them know. (Sometimes it's just best not to hear a voice.) And my mom e-mailed me immediately. We got to talking and she sent me this experience:

Do you want to hear my best example of grace under fire?  I can't remember if it was the third or fourth round of chemo for Grandma McGuire, but she had to have something done as an out patient and she asked me to take her to the hospital. She had decided to have the nurse shave her head while they were doing what they had to do because it was going to fall out anyways. She had thought this though a head of time and when they pulled the curtain back she walked out in grandpas black cowboy hat with her head held high. We didn't talk. I knew she was thoroughly tired of going through the motions again. To me it seemed to be her defense against the world and what people think. Find your hat my dear. You can keep moving forward. Focus on others today. You'll get through the day a little easier. I love you.

My mom always knows just what to say. She also knows when nothing is right. When silence is better. She knows the pain I go through because she loves me. She hurts right along side me. And she reminds me that our Heavenly Parents are hurting too. They are not the ones to blame for this. No one is to blame. This is just a "thing." It's not a bad thing or a good thing. It's just a "thing." It's a part of our lives that both blesses us and strengthens us. It's our trial by fire.

And to remind me of a strong and beautiful woman who walked through fire gracefully on a daily basis, I made this for our home.

If I can endure this trial with half the grace she endured hers, I will be proud.

And someday, I will be a mother who knows. For now, I am grateful for mine. Because she knows.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Sweet Life

Well, last wednesday the year ended. Last tuesday was free cone day at Ben and Jerry's. As one last grand gesture of self-restraint and love for Cam, I went through the line, got my free cone, and walked around with it until he downed his it started dripping down my hand. At that point, I shoved it into his other hand and let him look like a horker.

Wednesday came and I went to work. I was about halfway through my day when this showed up:

Flowers, balloons, and chocolate covered cinnamon bears. YUM! We had plans to go to the melting pot that night, so those little bears sat on my desk all day long and tormented me. They are my absolute favorite candy, but nothing beats the melting pot, so I waited.

Cam came to pick me up at work and gave me a huge hug. We drove home, got changed, and met up with the Youngs to head to SLC. It was National Cheese Day or something like that, so every reservation received a free pot of cheese fondue. It was so yummy! Green Apples in warm cheese is so so good.

Next up was the chocolate pot. (We opted to not get the broth course of the meal because it's super expensive. Cheese & Chocolate was it for us!) The group let me pick the first pot. I chose a white chocolate amaretto.

First up, I went for a brownie bite. If you're breaking a year-long sugar fast you can't break it on a banana or a strawberry or something lame like that!

Please note Cam's face. He is quite pleased that I am once again eating treats. lol.

We got a second pot of chocolate (the flaming turtle), which was a lot more rich than the first pot. I had about 2 bites of it and my head started pounding! It was SO good though! I woke up the next morning with a choco-hangover. And I was nice & crabby. A sweet reminder of just exactly why I went off sugar in the first place.

We've since gone to a few of our favorite dessert shops, but I'm not convinced I need sugar to be happy. I miss how I felt when I wasn't eating it. And so, I'm debating whether to just give it up for good or to work out another system that works for me. My current ideas are:

  1. I can only have 1 treat per event. (Party with lots of treats, just pick one.)

  2. I can only have 1 treat if I work out that day - or -

  3. Just quit. Everyone is happier that way.

Cam doesn't much like #3, but it's seeming to win out right now. (Coming from the girl who just ate at Farr's Fresh Ice Cream last night...)


Friday, April 15, 2011

Zebra + Chrome

When we reupholstered our couch, we turned it from a sectional into a 3-seater. This gave us some extra room in the living room that looked....empty. We were up in Salt Lake on Tuesday, and took a little drive up to the Centerville DI to see what we could find. (We'd heard the DI's that aren't in college towns are SO much better and boy, were they right!)

I wanted to find a chair to fit that little empty corner of the room, but it had to be cheap. We looked around for a while and didn't really see anything. (Especially anything under $10.) We walked into the yard area, and it was like that magic part right at the beginning of willy wonka where the entire land is edible. Lamps, picture frames, furniture, an air hockey table, screen doors, etc. We were in heaven. I got distracted with the chandeliers and Cam came around the corner with this little beauty, tagged for $4!

We were just giddy. It was PERFECT! So, we bought it and hit JoAnns next door right before they closed to pick up a half yard of fabric for $5. Last night, Cam picked me up from work, we did a 15-minute trip to Lowe's for spray paint ($6), and threw our freezer meal in the oven. (Taco pasta. Cooks for 90 minutes). Cam took the seat off. I recovered it. He primed & painted the base, and we attached the new seat right as the timer went off for dinner. Talk about a great project! I should find more things we can do while dinner's cooking. I felt so productive!

Shameless plug for freezer cooking: UM, when was the last time YOU re-designed a chair while making dinner. I'm tellin' ya. Freezer cooking changes lives!

What do you think?

Total cost: $15

*little* crafts

After we finished the couch, Cam told me I got to pick a few *little* crafts to work on next. No more king sized quilts or sectional re-dos. So, I started planning the little touches I could add to our home to make it ours. I truly believe the beauty of a home is in the details. The little pieces of personality left by those who live there. I really wanted to add something personal to a blank wall in our bathroom. Our poor little bathroom has been neglected. Almost every other part of the house has been updated in some way, but our bathroom...yuck. I wanted to do a sign of some sort. Tall & skinny. Because it was going to be in the bathroom, somewhere we go first thing in the morning, I wanted it to be a list of ways to take care of your marriage. I mentioned this to Cam, and without even hesitating he said, "Why don't you put the lyrics to love like crazy on there?" I was totally jazzed about the idea. I love it when Cam and I are so absolutely on the same page! It was EXACTLY the idea I needed. So, here's what I came up with:

Cam took 2 boards and bracketed them together for me. I designed the layout in photoshop and cut it out with my silhouette on contact paper. Painted the whole thing white, and then Cam stenciled the words on with navy blue paint. I think I'm still going to go over it and sand it down a little. Some of those lines are too crisp for my taste. But I am TOTALLY in love with the crack down the middle.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Can today get better?

I submit that it can not! :)

Can't wait for the phone call that says Jared is safely on the ground.

Also can't wait for the melting pot tonight! (Especially with an insider tip from Emilee for a certain caramel-ly dessert. YUM!)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Plum Love

Well, we did it! We finally have our living room back! It took us over 2 months to finish this project, but we couldn't be happier. We're just thrilled with how it turned out. Not bad considering neither of us had any experience with reupholstering things. lol. I sure love figuring things out with Cam. It makes marriage so fun. And the sense of fulfillment when it's all over is awesome, not to mention all the late-night sillies that come out when the project takes a million or two unexpected turns.

Here's what we started with:

For some reason, in this picture the couch doesn't look all that bad. It was. We picked it up for free off a ksl listing. It had been sitting outside in the rain for a while because it wouldn't fit down into the new basement apartment of its owners. We didn't have a truck to haul it, but they were so anxious to get rid of it, they loaded it up and delivered it to our apartment for free! I was thrilled. It was a little rough looking though. If you could get past the puddles and water stains, you found tons of hair, dirt, uno cards, pet stains, etc. It was n.a.s.t.y. We took a rug doctor to it and cleaned it up as best we could and used it for over a year. People always commented on how nice it was (considering we got it for free), but it was a major eye-sore in our living room. yuck.

One day, I had a meltdown and said that we were either rearranging our living room or moving because I was sick of it. Cam opted for the former and we took a Saturday to do some damage:

(am I the only one whose projects are most often fueled by meltdowns?)

The goal was to create a 3-seater couch and an ottoman with what we had to work with. (The sectional's chaise lounge part was on the wrong side of the couch in our opinion...Plus, what fun would it be to just recover the sectional? No, no, we must totally reconstruct the darn thing. :)

Cam cut the foot off the sectional and added two legs. I sewed the cushion and cover and the ottoman was done!

And then it sat there. Just like that. For 2 months. (Almost) And the rest of the couch stared at me. And Cam kept telling me how "fun it would be to work on the couch!" What he really meant was, "Kristin, I can't do anything unless you start sewing. for real." And thus began the week of non-stop sewing, stuffing and stapling.

What you may notice in the picture above is that our little half-sectional grew an arm on the left side! My brilliant husband figured out how to build and bracket on an arm to match the other side so we could convert this sectional into a 3-seater. I love being on his team. :)  

Once the entire frame was built and Cam was just waiting for me to finish sewing everything, he decided to press all my seams for me so he could be supportive while I worked in the sweatshop. It was awesome. He sure is good to me. :) (I really REALLY hate ironing.)

We had almost everything ready to go, when our trusty little staple gun broke. We took it apart,lost a few pieces, & got our hands all covered in grease, so we decided it was a good time to hit up Goodwood Barbecue for dinner. We were both so drained that dinner was hilarious. It was fun to cuddle up in the booth and joke around with each other. When we got back to the house, Cam had to go buy a staple gun at Walmart (everything else was closed). He walked me to the door and dropped me off along with the "I had a really great time with you tonight." etc. And then proceeded to give me a goodnight kiss. All you married folk, try this sometime! It brings back all sorts of butterflies. Gave me the oomph to finish the side-panels and psyche up to help Cam staple everything together.

Meanwhile, Cam made 3 different trips to Walmart. The first staple gun he bought didn't fit our staples, so he went back to buy new staples, which also didn't fit (even though they were the same brand as the new staple gun...) and so he went back and bought a whole new staple gun with coordinating staples. It was late. lol. The same lady checked him out all 3 times. She got a kick out of it. Cam did not. He got in the car and screamed. lol. And then came inside and informed me that "I was so mad! And nothing was on the radio except commercials. I hate that." Oh husband. :)

It was smooth sailing once we got the right staples in the right staple gun. We finished around 2 and vacuumed for an hour. SO MANY STAPLES! We threw everything away, Cam hung our new family picture (thanks Em!) And we sat on the stairs to check out our handywork. :)

A little finishing touch with the silhouette and we were good to go!

We're really thrilled with how it turned out. :) Thanks for reading!