Thursday, September 17, 2015

Our Home in Wyoming

Because I am always curious about what people's houses look like, and since no one I know is going to physically see the inside of our little (tiny) rental in Wyoming, I thought I would share a few million pictures. (Run-on sentence, much?)
We have been here for just under 2 months now, and have adjusted pretty well to our small living conditions. I actually quite like our little abode - but I will certainly not complain when I have more space sometime in the near future.
So, we are dealing with 912 sqft. No garage. 2 bedrooms. 1 bathroom. 3 kids. 2 adults.
Here is the layout (as sketched by my memory when we were planning for our move up here)

My drawing was surprisingly accurate, by some miracle. Not a bad layout, right? Okay, lets start with the outside and move from there. (P.S. the outside pictures were taken about a week ago...all of those green leaves are currently very yellow and fall-y).

This is the walk way up to our house. Not much to say here. Boooring.

This is our front yard. The girls don't play our here much, mostly because we live across the street from the high school, so its a busy road right there. I kind of want to chop those bushes down to half their current size, but they do give us a lot of privacy, and do a pretty good job of blocking the wind, so I guess they can stay....for now

Next, lets move onto the living room, since that is the room you walk into. This room serves a myriad of purposes. For instance. In this corner, we have our office, our library, and our kids' corner.

 In this area we have our Art Appreciation Gallery. I often sit here and muse upon the mysteries of life - art really opens one's mind (ha!). Coincidentally, in this same section, we have our entertainment area, which numbs my mind. Best of both worlds, I say.

And most importantly, over in this corner is my sewing craft area. That table gets an incredible amount of use. Best birthday present ever, seriously.

 Here we have our relaxation area, and it also functions as a sun tanning bed-couch. The sun blares through that huge window all day long...I should probably protect my couch from fade somehow, I'm seriously concerned.

And here we have our music room. Right next to the front door, where cold air will hit it all winter long. Not ideal, at all, but what are you gonna do. It fits where it fits.

Okay, lets move on, and go to the kitchen, shall we?

I definitely don't hate this kitchen. It has lots of natural light, decent layout. The cabinets... Well ya, they are what nightmares are made of. Why two tone them people, why?? Its insanity! They could have just painted them all white. I actually submitted a request to paint them white, but my request was ignored, and I am not going to push it. I have to keep reminding myself that we don't own this house, and we won't live here forever, so just deal with it woman. 
You may have also noticed there is no dishwasher. Nope. We are hand-washing fiends over here! But I can't complain about my view while I am scrubbing dried, sugary, milk residue off of cereal bowls. 

Right off the the kitchen we have our laundry room.

This room also serves as our pantry AAAAND Dutch's bedroom. We had to get creative folks. We hung a curtain up and called it good. We have to be pretty darn quiet in the kitchen at night though, which is lame, but we are used to it now. Life is about being flexible, right?

Next up, we have our "master bedroom". Its teeny weeny. We gave the bigger room to the kids, because they have more stuff and they outnumber us....we took a vote and Steve and I lost. 

 That corner, next the dresser, harboring all those awful cable cords, ya that one, is where we move Dutch's pack n' play for naps during the day. Moving that pack n' play back and forth just may be my least favorite thing about living here. Seriously, I hate it. So much.

Right next to our room, is the kids room. Its a fun and functional little room.  I haven't decorated it very much, mostly because I don't want to make this room look any busier than it already does.

 Bunk beds are the greatest invention ever. Thank you Ikea for making a loft bed that works perfectly for toddlers. Heidi and Dutch are best the best of buddies and can be found playing on Heidi's bed a lot. I love it.

This is the longest post ever, sorry. One more room. The one, the only, bathroooooom!!
Nothing to write home about. Yes, that is a wooden toilet seat. Yes, its porous and gross. BUT the screws to remove it are rusted and stripped, so the toilet seat wins the battle, and it stays to torment us with its gross, germ harboring ways. I must mention the shower curtain. It makes me sad, people, sad. I am really tempted to buy the most awesome shower curtain known to man, no matter the cost, just to make this room happier. 
On a positive note, the shower is brand new, has nice water pressure, and I am forced to clean this bathroom regularly because it gets dirty in about 3 seconds flat. Glass half full situation here.

Hey there stranger!

Last, but certainly not least, is our backyard. We love our backyard. And what's not to love? We have a baby swing, and a big kid swing, hung from and old clothes line pole, a hammock, soft green grass, a beautiful meadow to look at, with a river running through it, and horses that come close to our fence every other day or so. So fun. Of course, now it is covered in leaves and the temperatures are plummeting, but we hope to still find a way to enjoy our yard, even in the cold weather.

Congratulations if you made it to the end! Now, to reward myself for putting such a long post together, I think I will sneak into my kitchen and quietly get some ice cream, and pray that I don't wake Dutch up in the process....

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Crickets, be gone!

Its really has been quiet over here for a while - mostly because I started a sewing blog and that was my obsession for a bit. It actually still is an obsession, but life has dramatically gotten in the way of my sewing projects.

Life is straight up lunacy for us right now. Steve's dreams are coming true because he got himself a new Spanish teaching Wyoming! In August we will be completely uprooting everything familiar with our lives and planting ourselves in the tiny town ("village" seems like a more accurate term) of Big Piney, Wyoming. Population 534. Average high temperature in January, 25 degrees. Average low in January -5 degrees. Closest Wal-Mart....2 HOURS away.


People are always asking me if I am excited about our new adventure. I wouldn't say I am excited about the idea of living in the freezing cold, in the middle of nowhere, but I feel good about this move. Really good. Although I am not excited about leaving my family in Arizona and the daunting winters that lay ahead of us, I am excited about a few things such as:

  • amazing summers
  • virtually no traffic (I honestly get pretty severe anxiety in traffic, so this is a really good thing for me)
  • open spaces
  • cool summer nights
  • looking at the stars at night
  • nights that get dark, really dark (no street lights)
  • being part of a small community (I realize really becoming part of a community can take years, but its a nice thought to me)
  • experiencing 4 seasons again
  • busting out a true winter wardrobe
  • playing in the snow with our kids
  • NOT living the ghetto anymore
  • feeling safe, not worrying too much about crime
  • a much higher income
  • exploring the wilderness we will be living by
  • getting creative with making a tiny house fits our needs
We will likely be living in a two bedroom, one bathroom, small little house. The school district owns housing specifically for teachers, so they charge a really (ridiculously) low rent. Though these houses are small, I have been inside of one, and everything was updated and clean. I can do this, not forever, but I can do this.

Our house will officially be on the market tomorrow. I keep looking at the "For Sale" post in our front lawn and trying not to feel sad about leaving our home. I know I complain about living in the ghetto, but I have really loved this home and our ward. I have brought three babies home to this house -  so many, many memories.

I have also loved living within 25 minutes of 4 of my siblings and 2.5 hours away from my parents. I am really going to miss my sisters, mom, and friends. In fact, sometimes I get really sad when I think of only seeing my family once or twice a year, and my kids not really knowing my parents and their cousins on my side. Its kind of depressing for me, but I know we can't stay in Arizona with how little they pay teachers. I know this move is the right thing for our family, but I can still be a little sad about it too, right?

I have so many things on my "To Do" list I feel paralyzed when I look at it. Here's to hoping our house sells fast and our move goes smoothly and I don't cry too much when we pull out of our driveway for the last time. Okay, I might have cried a little when I just wrote that sentence. Oh boy.

Monday, April 27, 2015

A New Blog

I started a new blog for my sewing projects. I will still update this one with family and personal stuff, I know you were worried about that, ha! Anyway, there isn't anything fun on it yet, just and introductory post. If you are interested in following along it is:

Monday, March 23, 2015

The Sewing Bug

If any of you know my dear mother, one thing you probably know about her is her mad seamstress skills. The woman used to make wedding dresses for brides, countless prom dresses for her 4 picky (okay, maybe I was the only picky one) daughters, and the list goes on and on. As a child she tried to teach me the ways of clothes making, but I usually just got really frustrated with it and wanted to throw what I was working on into a fire. It wasn't pretty. So I gave up on clothes making altogether.

10 years later, my kind and thoughtful husband bought me a serger for Christmas. Seriously. I was shocked and felt like a spoiled little brat. So, to make myself feel like less of a brat, I decided I needed to put this thing to good use and really learn how to make clothes.

Easter is around the corner, so I decided I would start with Easter dresses. So I made this dress (and one for Heidi too, but I didn't photogragh it....poor Heidi).
I hated it. And still do. However, the pattern I used was really great and easy to use. (If you are interested it is called the Geranium Dress.) Because the dress was a pretty fun sew, I decided to start over with the Easter dress thing and put my own spin on the Geranium dress.

This time I added a peter pan collar, lengthened the bodice, and made the skirt all fluffy-like. I made one for both girls and am really happy with I decided to make another version of the addicting Geranium dress.

Then I thought to myself, "why stop with 5 dresses in two weeks? I think I'll make another, please!"
So I bought a pattern called the Cricket Dress from Brownie Goose.

This one is just begging for a belt, am I right, or am I right? Right? Right? Right? (Groundhog's Day anyone?)

Then I decided I needed to make myself a shirt. So I made a pattern out of a shirt I already owned, and called it a day....I may or may not have been living in this shirt for the past 5 days...not kidding.
Like how I cropped off my make-up-less face? ha! 

And just this morning, I found a new designer who makes children's apparel patterns, and bought this pattern  with hopes to whip up this adorable romper in the next day or so.

I think I may have some of my mom's seamstress genes in me after all - although I don't see wedding dressing coming out of my sewing room ever - I am honestly have SO much fun sewing for my girls. Who knew?

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Little Love Seat

I finished the love seat I was working on last night. It was a new record for me. I completely upholstered it in one day. I was able to do it so quickly because it was really straight forward, and most importantly, I didn't have to sew a box cushion for the was lovely.
Here are some fun before and afters.....

Its are really pretty color, which was a huge sigh of relief because I bought it online without ordering a sample first. Always a risk, but it worked out well for me this time. 
We really need a really bad. Three carseats in the back of a Honda Accord is not ideal - in fact its driving me bonkers. BUT minivans are expensive and things are just generally tight in the whole financial realm of our lives. So I am going to try this upholstering thing (once again) to try and help us save up for a nice down payment on a minivan. I've got my next project piece all lined out to purchase tonight. Its a couch, and it will not be a one day project, not even close, but couches are the money makers.
Here's to hoping the above loveseat sells fast!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Life Lately....

So I had a baby. And he is super cute and I kinda like him a lot. Behold, Dutch. Behold him!

Having three kids is all kinds of wonderful and chalk full of all kinds of crazy "all-hell-has-broken-loose" moments. Our little Dutch is almost 10 weeks old now, and life is beginning to  feel like our new normal. It feels pretty good to finally have the confidence to take three kids to IKEA or thrift stores. I don't feel captive in my house anymore!
A little something about Dutch: he is the best baby ever. Seriously. He eats well, sleeps well (not through the night quite yet but we are getting closer), and best of all, he doesn't feel the need to be held all day. He is happy as a bug (because bugs are happy, right?) to just kick around on a blanket while I chase his crazy sisters around. Lately its been less chasing and more pulling Heidi off of Avery when she attacks her like a pit bull. She's a biter, and it is more than terrifying...for everyone.
Got a little side tracked there. What I am trying to say is, we have been blessed with a very sweet little boy and we all adore him to pieces....and if Heidi sics him, he very well could be in literal pieces. Kidding! Kind of. She's be crazy.
In other news, a couple of Sunday's ago was Dutch's blessing day. It turned out to be a beautiful day full of the people we love most. He looked so dapper and handsome. I seriously love that little guy. Sidenote: we think he may be a redhead. The jury is still out, but its definitely not brown like his sisters' hair.

Besides Heidi trying to chew our limbs off, she is quickly following in Avery's footsteps to love all things "princess". Its adorable and annoying all at once.
Avery is now a Sunbeam and is growing up on us all of the sudden. She is my paranoid little helper and the best diaper fetcher that ever was. 
Steve is working A LOT, again. Athletic Director duties and extremely time consuming, and the job pays very little, so you know, its a win-win. 
Since I am feeling more settled into life with three kids. I decided to start upholstering again. I honestly crave projects, especially upholstery, so I was pretty excited to come across this gem at Goodwill last week. It was a whopping $13.

My fabric is coming in the mail tomorrow, so hopefully in the next couple of days I can sell this off and make a few bucks. Oh, and I re-designed my sewing room since having Dutch too. Once I get that little love seat sold off and out of that room, I'll do a little posty-post on the changes in there.
Over and out.