Thursday, January 30, 2014

Pictures, anyone?

Levi loves to help vacuum.  I'm not complaining!

Enjoying the dog :)

Love these two and their special connection :)

Bath night! 

I love that just-woke-up look...

Sleeping girl...perfection.

She's learned the wrinkled nose look from the best...her brother.  She pulls it off pretty well and has made it her own too :)

There's the boy's version of the wrinkled nose smile :)

Cutie.

hehe.  This happens so much.

Marble maze made from lego.  Turned out to be more frustrating than fun...but I'll store this idea in my back pocket for another rainy day when Levi's a little older.  With a little more coordination, I think it could be a good time!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Giveaway!

It's my blog so I can do shameless self-promotion, right?  If you're on fb, head on over to my Uniquely Me Design fb page and enter to win some free product!  If you're not on fb (yes, I know there are some of you out there!), you can still play along!  Just leave a little comment on this post and I'll be sure to enter your name in the draw!  You know you wannnnna!

On an unrelated (yet totally related!) note, my little business is four years old this month!  How crazy is that?  It feels like just yesterday - and a lifetime ago - that I was sitting in our apartment in rainy California and I was setting up my shop on Etsy.  Choosing the name - Uniquely Me Design.  Getting my "look" together.  It has certainly evolved in the past four years, and I've expanded my designs quite a bit. And, I've got significantly less time to work on stuff now that there are two kids to keep me busy.  But I still love to make things for people. I love to hear from my customers and put their creativity into being.  I love to hear their stories and share their excitement for whom they will gift my product. l I love to work with my hands and see beautiful creations take shape.  And then to package them up and mail them away all over the world - literally!

 It's a good time, people. 

Here's to another year of MAKING.


Etsy - https://www.etsy.com/shop/UniquelyMeDesign?ref=si_shop

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Uniquely-Me-Design/112684978818570

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

At long last...The House.

I've put this off long enough.  People have been wondering and asking about our house but I've kept thinking that I would take pictures once it was DONE.  After having lived here for two months now, it's becoming clear that it'll only really feel done once we have gone through every room and made it ours.  But that could take a while (hello, BUDGET!) so I finally just bit the bullet and took pictures this morning.  I didn't clean, I didn't set anything up.  This is how it looks in the middle of a day of playing!  Enjoy!

This is the front of the house (in summer, can't WAIT!).  The door on the right is the one we use.  The other door goes into the living room.


This is the first thing you see when you walk in the door. That's the door you see on the left...attached garage is to the left of that yet.  This window faces west.
On the right, where the jackets are hanging, is the rest of the entrance.  The door you see is into the garage.  Two steps up brings you into the house.  On the right is the desk you just saw.  On the left is the family room.

This is the family room.  Gas fireplace in the corner is the heat for this room.  That window is opposite the window above the desk and faces east (beautiful sunrises out there!!).

More of the family room.  The door you see at the back leads onto our deck.

Walk straight into the kitchen and this is what you see on your right.  The door at the back is the master bedroom (which I'll not share a picture of today...I'll wait until that one is done!)  The kids bedroom is just around the corner by the fridge, straight ahead.  The bathroom door is just to the left of that last cabinet on the left.
Walk to the fridge and turn around and this is the rest of the kitchen.  Bedroom doors are right behind me.  Family room is to the left.  The opening you see on the right is the dining room/living room.  The bathroom doorway is just to the right of that doorway.  This window faces south.
Living room is on the north west corner of the house.  The window faces west.  There is SUCH good light in this room during the day!

This is the dining room.  Excuse the mess on the table.  We were busy doing crafts this morning (Levi's favourite activity these days!).  Plus, he and Kayden were having lunch while I was taking pictures.  Also excuse the placement of pictures!  After we moved in, I just took random pictures and put them on pre-existing nails just to keep them safe and we haven't moved them yet.  The photo wall in the living room is the only place where we actually have put in our own nails!  This window faces south and the entrance to this room is just out of sight on the left hand edge of the picture (the exersaucer is right in front of the doorway).
The bathroom is huge.  I believe the previous owners took out the third bedroom and made both the master bedroom and bathroom bigger.  While the third bedroom would have been nice for us, I do enjoy having so much space in the bathroom!  And, we do have some plans up our sleeve for creating two more bedrooms in the hopefully near future...stay tuned!

This is the kids bedroom (remember, right off the kitchen by the fridge?).  We painted both this room and our bedroom before we moved in.  While we were at it, we painted the oak trim and doors white and replaced the hardware/plugs/lightswitches.  As we work our way through each room, we plan to paint trim and replace hardware/plugs/switches.  We're also on the lookout for good deals on light fixtures but no hurry.  The kids enjoy the fans :)  The spots on the wall are removable so it'll be easy to switch up the look in this room whenever the design bug hits.  The pictures are Dick and Jane photos of the siblings playing.  I thought it would be fitting for a shared bedroom.
And that's our house!  The basement has our guest bed, laundry and storage but is mostly unfinished/wood paneling and has no heat/windows so there's not much to show.  We might do minimal work to the basement but it'll likely just be painted and decorated a bit so that company doesn't feel like they're staying in quite a...BASEMENT.  I believe Nathan's brother has officially refused to ever sleep down there, though both of our parents and my sister have spent a few nights down there with no complaints.  Maybe they're just being nice...though apparently you can't hear the kids from down there so I'm thinking about booking myself a night down there for a little "getaway" one of these days.  Oh, the possibilities!

This house is situated on a 10 acre yardsite with ALOT of grass, some pasture, some old corrals, a shop (where we park our vehicles), and some trees.  It's beautiful out here and we LOVE being here.  We can't see any neighbours by day and at night we only see lights in the distance.  We're 12-15 minutes from town and on a quiet road so we don't even see vehicles going by every day.  I can't even describe how much like home it feels already.  I've loved our homes in the past but this place...it just has that staying quality.  I feel like I'm finally HOME.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Eleven Months Old

 Kayden is 11 months old!  Only one more month before her birthday.  Now THAT is hard to believe!  Where did my teeny tiny little newborn go??  It has been a fun 11 months :)

 Kayden remains the sweet, content, easy-going girl that she's always been.  I was reading back through my journal the other day and noticed that I described Kayden in her first week of life very much the same as I would describe her now.  Laid-back.  Easy-going.  Patient.  Only really making noise when something is quite wrong.  Ok, that one has changed a little, but she's still pretty quiet.  She "talks" a bit and cries occasionally when she doesn't want to sleep or when Levi is bugging her but mostly she is quiet and watching or playing.

 Kayden has been chewing on things but she doesn't really seem like she's teething yet.  She's not drooling excessively, acting uncomfortable, feverish...nothing.  Even her red cheeks seem to correspond to sickness and not teething.  Well, I guess she'll get teeth eventually :)  For now, I'll just enjoy not being bitten!  Those first teeth are RAZORS I tell you!

 Kayden not having teeth hasn't slowed down her food intake at all.  She has been downing TONS of  pureed baby food in between her meals of "real" food and breastmilk.  She eats pretty much everything we eat and gets frustrated if we don't share our food with her :)  She took her first bottle this month with very little coaxing.  She's also been drinking out of a straw cup a bit but not enough for me to feel good about weaning her completely.  We're working on it and I'm hoping that she will be completely weaned around her first birthday.

 Kayden weighs just over 17lbs and wears mostly 12 month clothes.  She is still on the smaller side for her age, but if I'm going to be carrying her around, it's probably for the better!  She is still not getting around on her own at all.  She can walk when we hold her hands and stand for a few seconds at a time on her own, but she isn't pulling herself up, isn't crawling, isn't even rolling as a means of transportation.  She is quite comfortable rolling over by herself now though!  I don't mind at all if Kayden is slower to start moving.  I'm enjoying the life of always knowing where at least one of my kids is!  She's always right where we leave her!


Kayden has learned to play peek-a-boo by herself this month!  It is so cute.  She'll grab a blanket or toy or, this morning, her shirt and lift it up to cover her face (or just over her head which doesn't cover her face but is cute nonetheless!) then put it down again.  "Where's Kayden??"  "OH! There she is!"  It's always good for a few laughs.  Kayden is learning new things to make us smile all the time.  If she notices that shaking her head "no" or patting something with her hand makes us smile, she will do it over and over.  That said, she doesn't really seem like an entertainer.  She's more of an explorer, doing things over and over to learn about the results more than to keep us laughing.

 It really feels like Kayden has turned into a snuggler this month.  I'm not sure if it's the Christmas festivities that have made her feel more snuggly or that she is just becoming more snuggly as she gets older but it always melts my heart when she lays her head on my shoulder or chest.  I'll take all the cuddles I can get!  She isn't a terribly shy girl, it doesn't seem, though there are times when she definitely prefers to be in my arms over anyone else's.  That said, if I leave the room, she can often be distracted with toys or animals and be fine without me.

 Kayden's favourite toys are still animals/dolls and if they are real life animals or babies, even better!  Her eyes just light up when she sees them and she squeals an excited "eee!"  Kayden has also discovered the fun of toys that make noise this month.  Buttons are so much fun.  She has also realized that any container with toys in it can be dumped so this has also become a favourite game.  Kayden seems to really enjoy music and starts to "dance" whenever a tune is playing.  Dancing, for her, consists of sitting down bounces...kinda like little ab crunches.  She'll just sit there bouncing.  It's pretty cute, but I'm biased :)

 Kayden's eyes are definitely not turning brown, that is 100% clear by now :)  But they are not staying a true dark blue either.  They still have blue around the edges but hazel is coming in from the middle now.  Depending on the day, they are either blue or grey or hazel.  Just like her daddy!  Her hair is still quite short but there are individual hairs that have survived from birth that stand straight up sometimes.  Her bald spot on the back is filling in nicely, though you can still see where it was.  Whenever I get anxious to start doing little girl hair, I just remind myself that once it starts growing, I'll have to do every day so I'll just enjoy this bald head as long as I have it!

 Kayden had her first Christmas this month.  With that came her first new years and her first night spent at "grandma and grandpa yellow puppy"'s house.  Other firsts?  Not sure.  It's been a fairly uneventful month as far as firsts go.  She pulls her toques off every time, that's a first!  Umm...yeah.  Moving on...

 It's hard to believe that this is the last month of Kayden's first year.  We'll be celebrating her first birthday before we know it.  It feels like we just celebrated Levi's first birthday and now it's hers already.  Time sure flies.  Cliche, yes.  But it's true.  We love our little Kayden Grace.  Happy 11 months, my girl!

Oh, and I almost forgot!  Sleep!  The issue that just keeps giving :) Actually, we've made some significant steps ahead in this department this month!  I was just so exhausted and at my wit send trying to get Kayden to sleep through the night. I had tried EVERYTHING and everything just seemed to make it worse. So finally I decided that, just for ONE night, I would not respond to her at all. I knew she wasn't hungry, no ear issues, not sick. And one night of no mama wouldn't kill her or scar her for life. Turned out she just cried 12 minutes the first time, 10 minutes the second time, and 90 minutes the third time. But she made it through!  And seeing how well she did, I decided to stick with it. A few days/weeks later and she's sleeping through the night more often than not!!!  We hear her wake up sometimes but she just puts herself back to sleep. You wouldn't believe how luxurious it feels to go to bed knowing that I might not have to get up until morning. It has been a long time coming :) Oh, sweet sleep how I've missed you...