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3 posts from January 2011

01/04/2011

Spangler Visits the Groomer

We took Spangler to the groomer for his first "real" bath (I usually give him a bath in the upstairs bath tub, but being almost nine months pregnant, I figured $29 was worth the expense to not have to mess with it). I had to go to the doctor for my every-other-week blood draw and was going to go pick up Spangler on my way home. When I got out of the doctor's office, I had the following voice-mail:"

Hi Jackie, this is Petco Salon and I know that I just talked to you a few minutes ago and that I told you Spangler was ready.

We're actually going to have to re-bathe him. He has just peed gallons and gallons and gallons and has rolled in it and is completely soaked with urine now.

So, we're just going to go ahead and completely re-bathe him and re-dry him.

It's probably going to be about another hour. We're just getting started on him now. We'll give you another call as soon as he's done.

Thanks.

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He's all clean and smells SO good, but only Spangler would have to get bathed twice . . .

01/03/2011

Final Wall Collage for the Baby's Nursery

Without further delay, the wall collage for our baby girl's room is finally complete.

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You know I'm a huge fan of collages (hence the "M" wall in my entry way) but I always forget that they are a total pain in the butt to do. I did take some photos of my process as getting wall collages correctly spaced is critical to the final look.

Once I received the items I ordered from Etsy.com in the mail, I physically took them around to a handful of stores looking for the right frames. I knew the paper doll and her dresses would do fine in a normal frame, but the baby doll dress needed to be in a shadow box.

(Note I purchased the brown frames from Walmart and the shadow box from Hobby Lobby. As mentioned before, the baby doll dress, paper doll and baby blocks were purchased on Etsy.com. The large metal "A" was found at an antique store in Rockwall, TX. The chandeiler sticker was purchased from LeenTheGraphicsQueen.com. The metal chairs were purchased back in 2006 from IKEA. The acrylic shelf was purchased at The Container Store.)

When choosing colors for the frames, it's good to try to find balance. I picked white for the baby doll dress frame specifically to tie in the white of the chandelier and the brown frames to tie in with the furniture of the room.

Designing-the-nursery-collage-on-the-floor

Once I got all the pieces, I laid them out on the floor exactly as I wanted it on the wall. This can be a slow process as I constantly move the frames around until I find that balance I'm looking for (for example, I knew I did not want the baby doll dress to be near the chandelier sticker just because they were both white--their separate creates balance).

Once you have it laid out, measure the total width of the collage.

Spangler-helping-me-with-the-nursery-collage

(It helps to have a 75 pound black lab who is "assisting" you with this process.)

I measured the wall I was putting the collage onto to find the center point, with some simple math on a scratch piece of paper. I could then find the center-point of my collage as well--so I knew where I'd hang the first piece of the collage. It ended up being the metal "A's" left side.

Newspaper-templates-on-the-wall-of-the-nursery

I then made newspaper templates of everything. This step always seems excessive and drawn-out (I pretty much despise doing it) but it really pays off. I took each newspaper equivalent and taped it on the wall. (For the shelf I used a thin piece of cardboard.) This allowed me to step back and evaluate the spacing of each item and to make sure the height of the collage itself worked.

Halfway-done-with-the-wall

Once I got everything where I wanted it, I started the hanging process. I did the sticker first (man, that made me nervous since it's not re-positionable) and added the frames one-by-one.

Completed-nursery-wall-collage-for-our-baby-girl

Finally, the wall came together and it's straight, centered, and exactly as I envisioned it.

Outtakes-from-the-nursery-collage-photos

(Just don't give your husband the camera as you're finishing up the wall . . . as he'll go crazy and get a bunch of pictures, although it's not bad to get some behind-the-scenes-35.5-week-pregnancy pics!)

A Simple, Snow-Free Christmas

Last Christmas we had a bit of anomaly here in North Texas. We got over eight inches of snow on Christmas Eve, which was just amazing! Of course, the downside is that it caused some problems with travel and my parents barely made it back to their house, which is about 55 miles away.

This year we tried the same schedule again, and without snow this time, it went much smoother.

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My family came over to our house for a pre-church hang-out, then we made it to the 4:30pm Christmas Eve service, and then out for some Turkish food.

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Back to our house to open up some gifts.

Spangler was very much into everyone being there. I'm sure he was convinced they were all there for him.

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For the actual gift-opening, Spangler got to sit under Cody's feet to keep him under control. Wrapping paper and new things, mixed with Spangler, usually means that he'll insist on putting everything in his mouth. He did really well, all things considered.

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(Just adding this picture in so you can see me at a side view . . . The stomach is really sticking out! I'm 34.5 weeks here.)

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My brother-in-law, Bret, keeps everyone cracking up. He lost part of his camera underneath the couch and it was quite a show to get it out.

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Some good eats were available for dessert. My Mom made some caramel cookies, Dianne made Christmas tree sugar cookies and I did my standard pumpkin pie (no homemade crust though, I was a bit burned out from Thanksgiving).

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My other brother-in-law, Lane, is talented enough to not only make the cake itself, but to frost it too.

My parents stayed the night (I'd been bugging them for over a year to come stay the night with us so I'm glad they finally did!) and we got up the next morning and had a quick breakfast before they headed home. Cody and I then took the couple hour drive out to his parents house.

Cody's parents hosted Christmas lunch this year and we opted for Mexican food instead of the standard Christmas fare. We got there later than Cody would have liked (I feel like I always make him late--I'm trying to get better) so it was a bit of a rush to get my guacamole made in time to eat. Grandparents, cousins, boyfriends, girlfriends galore came and went and we finally settled down to exchange gifts.

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I didn't want to open half the gifts because I'm such a sucker for pretty wrapping paper and bows, but we had a good time.

(Spotlight + Mirror + Cody's Dad = A Good Time)

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We did get Cody's dad a gift certificate to one of the golf courses in the North Texas area but to make the gift more exciting, I put together some gag "coupons" for him to redeem at any time.

Little did Cody know that they were for things like a "45 Minute Hot Oil Massage from Your Son" and a "Pedicure from Your Son." Ohhhhh there were some funny jokes with those coupons . . .

Overall, a really enjoyable Christmas was spent with our families. My sister Steph couldn't join us and of course, this was the first Christmas without Cody's grandpa Robert or his grandma Bonita, but we were able to enjoy it nonetheless.

And, it was snow-free, which for North Texans that aren't used to the snow, made it much more uneventful and more enjoyable.