Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Pool party

I don't know if I mentioned it before, but the beach condo we were staying at was on the 3rd floor.....that's lot's of stairs going up, and lot's of stairs going down, and beach chairs and floaties and towels and babies. I think we might have cancelled out all the ice cream we ate just by going up and down the stairs! Never mind the trecking through sand carrying kids, walking to and from the board walk almost every night and swimming almost all day everyday. Who knew vacationing could be such a great work out! We had a pool at our beach condo. It turned out to be totally necessary and such fun! It was so awesome to come from the beach all sandy and hot and shower off and jump into the pool to cool off and relax before going inside for lunch or dinner. One day the waves at the beach were so big that we spent a good deal of time at the pool instead of being pelted by the ocean. Charlotte hasn't spent much time in water other than the bath tub, and at first she was really hesitant. It actually took a few times splashing around in her floatie before she relaxed and enjoyed herself. Maddie was totally amazing in both the ocean and the pool! As long as she has her floatie she can get around anywhere and she is showing so much confidence in the water. We practiced kicking and paddling with her arms while I held her. (no floatie) I think that I am going to look into swimming lessons for next spring/summer. Both Maddie and Charlotte liked being thrown into the air at the pool, but they liked being caught right at the start of the water and not going under. Which is funny because both girls like putting their faces in the water.....it must be a control issue. We had a lot of fun at the pool and also had a lot of talk about putting a pool in our back yard and what it was going to take to make it happen. Money. Lot's and lot's of money! I don't think that a pool is anywhere in the immediate future, but it's fun to dream......for now we'll enjoy our little blow up pool and look back at our vacation pictures with fondness!


Sunday, June 28, 2009

Boardwalk baby

Some friends of ours drove down and met us at the beach yesterday. We played during the day, made a great Mexican meal and then walked to the boardwalk to enjoy the festivities. Maddie is a ride junkie! Lord help me when she is big enough to go to a roller coaster park because she will want to go on everything!! The faster the better. Poor Charlotte had to hang out in the stroller most of the evening because there wasn't much for her to do. She seemed to like watching all the people though! After the ride we went and got ice cream and watched an outdoor puppet show. Once Maddie was done sufficiently covering herself in ice cream she went up on the stage in front of the puppet show and danced with some little boys. She is such a precious and hilarious little girl! The board walk is so much fun.....I'm sure we'll be back there riding rides and eating ice cream at least a couple more times before we head back home.

life's a beach

We had a great time at the beach yesterday! The sand is super soft and the water is cool, but not cold. Dan filled up an inflatable raft with water and we put it under our umbrella so that Charlotte could play in the water without having to deal with the crashing waves.....she ended up playing just fine around the waves, but it was nice to have another option when us adults didn't want to deal with kids and waves. Maddie loves the water, she thinks getting knocked over by a wave is pretty hilarious!! Dan buried Maddie and made her into a mermaid which she loved, and the girls dug in the sand. (Charlotte ate a good portion of it) One of my favorite parts of the day was catching sand crabs. Dan would grab armfuls of sand and dump it next to us and we would comb through it and take the sand crabs out and put them into our bucket. There was a guy fishing next to us who had this cool sand crab scooper and he brought over a scoop full that probably had 75 sand crabs!! It was awesome! We left the crabs in our bucket while we went back to the house for lunch and naps and we when we went back down they were all dead and some were already pink.....I guess we were cooking them! lol Oops. It was a great day at the beach. Can't wait to see what the rest of our time here brings!

We made it

The condo we rented turned out to be a really nice place. It's a little outdated, but I think that just goes with rental properties! Who wants to put a bunch of money into a place that other people might trash? It's plenty of space, both girls have their own rooms, and we have 2 bathrooms. Surprisingly it came stocked with enough kitchen stuff for us to make due.....not my lovely kitchen at home, but I am able to get meals prepared. We are right across the street from the beach, and we have views of the bay from the back deck. The board walk is within walking distance and there is a carnival and ice cream shops and arcades and souvenir shops that sell t-shirts and sea shells. It's a good location! I think that we'll try and come back here again.....maybe not this season, but for next year!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Sometimes words aren't necessary.


My lovely little Charlotte. She is growing up so fast! Sometimes I look at her and she still looks like a baby and sometimes she seems like such a big girl. She is walking now.....not 100% of the time.....she is still faster crawling so she reverts back to her knees when she wants to get someplace fast. It's amazing to watch her walking. Amazing. Such a sweet, sweet baby.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Home tour: guest room/office

Our guest room is the one area that I have no idea what to do with. I currently have the down comforter that we used to have on our bed in the master, and some random throw pillows. I have the old curtains from our old master and some random things on the walls. I need a new piece of art for the space above the bed, and I would like to make a duvet cover for the down comforter and covers for the those throw pillows, but I have no idea what colors I want to use which means I have no idea what fabric to buy. I guess I should go to the fabric store and see what I like. The walls are painted the same color as the living room a neutral beige so I could really do anything I wanted to with the comforter and accessories. I don't think that I want to stick with the jewel tones like what is in there right now, but knowing what I don't want doesn't really bring me much closer to knowing what I do want. Our guest room also doubles as the office which we don't use much anymore, but I'm sure that once Dan starts back up with school he'll be up there a lot. There is a bump out area in the guest room that fits our computer desk perfectly. The only problem is that it is really closed in and it's not very easy to move around in the computer chair. We are planning on getting a new computer desk....one that isn't L shaped and will fit in flush against the wall. It should make it easier to maneuver. I found a desk that I adore, but it's at pottery barn and we totally can't afford it.....we can't even afford the used ones on craigslist. So, I'm keeping my eyes open and maybe I'll find a good knock off, or even an original at a decent price. Why does pottery barn have to be SO expensive?? No fair! So, this room looks kind of neglected and it is in fact pretty neglected. But, the bed is comfortable and the room is private and that means you should come and visit us and stay over! And then you can give me advice on deccorating it! :)

Home tour: master bedroom

I don't really understand current trends when it comes to master bedrooms. It seems that everyone wants these huge master suites big enough to hold the cast of River Dance in and master bathrooms to match. I just don't get it. I hardly spend any time in my bedroom. I bathe, dress and sleep in there and generally very little else. I surely don't do cartwheels or hip hop dancing or have sleep overs or entertain dinner guests in there. I would much rather have a master bedroom with just enough space for my dressers and bed and have the square footage added to family space in the house......the rooms that actually get used all day. With that being said, our master bedroom is a bit bigger than just big enough. I would have enough space at the foot of our bed to do yoga if I did that sort of thing, and if necessary we have enough room to fit a crib in there. I like our room a lot, but I still feel like it's wasted space. Not that our house needs any additional space added to it, but it seems like the extra space in our room would be better used upstairs or in the kitchen. Our bathroom is bigger than our last one and it has all the elements of a super duper bathroom but it's nice and compact which I love. I really like the tray ceiling and the paint color that I picked out. I like that the room has 3 windows that let lot's of light in.....I do not like that one of our windows looks directly at our neighbors driveway, but curtains can do amazing things! I love the frosted window above the jacuzzi tub and the ceramic tiles. As far as I know we don't have any plans for the master bedroom, but we have talked about tiling the shower and changing out the shower doors with one that has invisible hinges, but just like almost every other project, we don't have the time or the money to start it anytime soon. It seems that with home ownership comes continual home improvement projects. But hey, it's fun to imagine the possibilities because they are endless!

Home tour: dining room

Not so easy to take pictures of the dining room. It's not that it's a small room, but it's hard to get into a good angle that actually shows anything. Just another reason why I need a wide angle lens! hint hint. I really like having a designated dining room. I have no idea if we'll use it very much (we've only used it once thus far) but the option of using it is worth having it. I think that if we had people over for dinner we would use the dining room, and if we end up hosting thanksgiving we will for sure use it! The rest of the time it is a pretty room that generally stays clean and free of toys because there isn't anything exciting for the girls to do in there. When you walk through the front door, the staircase is to your left, the hallway going into the living room is in front of you and the dining room is to the right. There is also a pass through from the dining room to the kitchen which all together makes a fun circle to run around. Dan had the girls chasing him the other day as he ran around and around.....maybe not such a great example (I'd rather the girls not run around the house) but they had enormous fun chasing Daddy. Dan and I have bounced around the idea of putting double french doors at the entrance of the dining room so we can close that room off, and we have also talked about converting the room into an office someday, but for now we are going to do nothing. It's lovely the way that it is and I'd like to see what kind of use it gets before we turn it into something else. We will however be staining our table and hutch a dark cherry color. Once things settle down and we have time for a project that big. Time? Who are we kidding?? We never have time lol, but we'll fit it in somehow! So, that is our dining room.....wanna come over for dinner so we can use it?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Home tour: Kitchen

The kitchen is the heart of our house. I think that I spend a good 60% of my time in the kitchen cooking meals, getting snacks and filling up sippy cups and doing dishes. My new kitchen isn't my dream kitchen, but it's pretty close. I wish that it had more cabinets, more counter space, enough floor space for there to be an island and a bigger pantry. But, I love the hardwood floors, love the lighting, love the cabinets, love the appliances and love how the kitchen opens up to the dining room and family room. I feel like I can be part of the gathering when we have people over rather than stuck in a different room by myself slaving over a stove. When we bought the house it had a dishwasher and a microwave in it, and Dan and I picking out a stove and a fridge turned into all new appliances. The stove started it all.....I really wanted gas, and we wanted to find one that had the knobs on the top rather than in the front where the kids could reach them and mess around with them. Turns out there aren't many gas stoves with knobs on the top.....ours was pretty much it. I adore our refrigerator and we have never had ice cream frozen so solidly! I think it has to do with the freezer being on the bottom. And I know I've already talked about the dishwasher, but it is SO quiet. You don't even realize it's running until you are right there next to it. No more turning the volume up when we're washing dishes! I would eventually like to get a new faucet for the sink and put up a mosaic glass tile back splash, but those are things on our to do list for someday, not anytime soon. I've already done a good deal of cooking in our new kitchen and I look forward to making thousands and thousands more. Hey, we might even host Thanksgiving here.....that is the ultimate test of a kitchen!

County McCounterson