Thursday Zack and I began clearing our woods, everything except the large trees (!!). No doubt a project that will take some time. Between watching the girls, and juggling naptimes I just don’t have a good amount of time to help Zack. When it comes to hard work and an eagerness to help, Dylan is the first thought that comes to our mind.

Zack gave him a text last night – he showed up at 8:30 this morning ready to work! (He lives two hours away in Springfield)


So far there has been quite a bit of raking leaves and cutting small trees and raspberry bushes. Oh the thorns…


Our goal is for our yard to resemble a park. The kind of park with gardens, well cut grass, as well as benches and swings spread throughout. Also, a nice fire pit, a chicken coop (built into the shed), a huge vegetable garden, more fruit trees, berry bushes and grape vines, and a small green house. Needless to say, I am glad I married a “doer”!!


Score! This little fellow made it into the treasure box!


Yesterday, Penelope scored this game at the antique store. Obviously, Dylan couldn’t leave without playing it.


Well, this one is getting framed immediately!


(This needle was in the box…oops.)

Children in 1964 had some awesome attention spans! Penelope did fine, but Daddy and Mommy were ready to throw in the towel halfway into our first game. I am looking forward to building health attention spans in our girls. Lord knows I could use some help in that department. Women in general struggle with this I suppose.



You can find the before here.

Three days ago, something got into me and I was on, what seemed like a non-stop mission to drasticall change things in our house.


First thing I did was paint the trim on the side shelves. I have debated back and forth on whether or not to paint the brick white as well. I love the look better, but I just don’t know if I can bring myself to paint brick. The dining room is the darkest room in the house, aside from our laundry room. The white brick would certainly brighten things up.


I am so excited to rev up the wood stove! We are saving this wood for Christmas eve / Christmas when my parents are visiting.


This shelf could use some color…


Sorry for the of kilter photography. Have baby, will wobble.


I have tried to incorporate more family photos, books and album covers (as art) into the display.


We just inherited this furniture from Zack’s aunt. It is nice to finally have a designated space for tablecloths, napkin rings, extra candles, etc.  – oh, and a place high up to store our breakable heirlooms from little fingers!

Feel free to weigh in on the white brick vs. red brick debate. Zack likes the white to, but needs the same persuasion I do. Eventually, maybe we’ll flip a coin, but we’d like your input!



The night of Amelia’s first birthday we decided to celebrate with some fireworks and star gazing. the absolute number one reason I love our home is the fact that we can see a full sky of stars each and every night. It is beautiful, especially on crisp, chilly autumn nights.


Zack surprised us with sparklers!!!


^ ^ Above is Penelope’s handy work. I held my breath the entire time.


We saw three airplanes fly by. In a setting purely light by the moon, airplanes are so so magical.


The Moon. It was actually pitch black when this was taken, but holding the shutter open as a cloud passed let in so much light.


Amelia giggled every time a firework was set off. Daddy’s girl. I was squeezing her safely in my arms the entire time! Thanks for the idea, Zack!! Same time next year?



Autumn is my favorite season. This year it is made better by our very own yard full of color!!


Wednesday at about noon it was finally warm enough to take the girls out. Amelia was napping so Penelope and I headed out to explore the yard…and swing, of course.


We only covered half of the yard since Penelope was on her bike. Maple tagged along. She’s good company. 🙂


My helper. She’s totally wearing Amelia’s coat. Since Amelia was sleeping I had to grab the only coat that wasn’t in her room. It’s so nice that they generally wear the same size! After our exploring we had a tea part complete with hot chocolate and graham crackers.


We have friends coming over tomorrow!! The first of our friends –that don’t live in our town – to come visit!! Probably over kill on the exclamation points, but I am excited. She has two kids, one Penelope’s age, and one Amelia’s. 



As the weather here gets cooler we’ll be spending more time on the porch, so last night I decided to make it a bit more homey. I’ll be adding more plants, but for now I’m happy with how it turned out!


I think this area needs a rug and or at least some throw pillows. Suggestions?


I brought some plants, from the dining room, outside. I still have pots that need to be filled but no plants to fill them with, so I used one for Penelope’s chalk.


My brother just gave me this brown chair before he moved to Oregon. It is really comfortable! The arm rests are so high – great for long, gangly arms! I made a runner out of a lace curtain we weren’t using, a plant, and some candles and voilà, cozy enough for cool evenings outside.

(Before this area had the green chair, the rocker, and that table was always covered in tools)


I also received this corner shelf from my brother, still bare, but we’ll get it stocked with stuff…slowly. The rocker was a gift from Zack’s grandparents – my favorite seat! I’ve always loved the idea of a rocking chair on the front porch.


I l o v e this yard. Never disappoints.


Looking for stars.


She decided every piece of chalk needed to be used.


She asked me to draw a baby, but it ended up looking more like a toddler…with no hands.


My Sweet Pea.


Her masterpieces.


Zack, happy with his girlies. The girls keeping a close eye on Maple.


Penelope took a few photos with the camera…her toes…


…Maple licking Mama’s leg…


and A, resting her head on Daddy’s arm.


It was wonderful watching the sunset, drawing chalk art with my little lady, all while over hearing Amelia’s giggles as she plays with Daddy. Pretty great way to end the day.



I showed a peek of the dining room and kitchen the other day. I figured I would show you the rest since all but two of our friends live nowhere near us.


The entryway to the house.


This sewing machine is from Zack’s great-grandma. We’ve had it for a few years now. In our last apartment it was the resting place for our microwave. I think this is a better fit for it. Definitely one of my favorite things in this house.


The board my shades are on was left here with its twin (on the table) by the previous owners. Not sure what it was intended for…

The plant is in a chicken broth can. 🙂

(The red thing is a rubber ducky)


No, your head isn’t tilted, I just haven’t mastered the straight angle whilst harboring a baby on my hip without a tripod. I’ll get there.


If you come over, watch your step! There is likely to be something on the floor in every room. If you decided to help-a-mama-out and pick up whatever junk just stabbed your heel, it will surely be replaced with another, equally as pointy, object in a matter of minutes.


This can was the home of some boiled peanuts. Yes, I ate them, and yes they were delicious.


This banner isn’t a year round thing. Just an autumn touch. Cheap. Cheap is what I was going for here.

These posters were a dollar + seventy-four cents. Everything else you see here was either a dollar or free-to-me.


The flowers / pine needles are from our yard.


This shelf is to the left of the fireplace / wood stove (?) Lets just call it a fireplace…

It is where most (not all) of the stuff my grandparents have given me over the years is kept.

The sewing machine was my first! The table it rested in, now holds our coffee shtuffs.


If you were wondering, the album covers are held up by miniature clips and nails. Also cheap. See a pattern here?



I keep a bowl various “old” (Sorry Mom and Dad!) photos of my parents, aunts, uncles, and grandparents.


This is one of two photos I have from Zack’s side of the family. The other one shares this shelf. I have a photo of Zack’s dad, but that’s it. Sorry Reighards and Rogers, you give ‘em I’ll display ‘em!


This is my Mama’s shelf. Along side the photos are some Japanese stuff (from grandparents) and shells, because she (like myself) loves the ocean!

There is an Indian-style candle holder there as well, but I just couldn’t think of where to put it. 🙂


I really like these large black and white posters, (Blueprint poster at Staples), I have them all over the house.

All of the shells you see are from my grandma, who also loves the ocean. Its in our genes…


These white “things” are soaps Zack’s students made in Solo cups last year. They smell amazing! Aside from the smell, they look like candles. Two for one. – and free fragrance!


This album is Chicago’s “You’re the Inspiration” single (my parent’s song).

The iron was my Vovo’s in Brasil. It is heavy so I keep it up high. Also, I’m pretty sure Penelope would use it to store various objects.

The couple figurine was a wedding gift from our friends Beth and Bill. One of these days I’ll paint the boy’s hair orange…


We play records while we eat supper, and occasionally during the day is Penelope is in the mood for a dance party. 😉

(We have several children’s albums, we don’t make her dance to “Rocky Mountain High,” although I’m sure she wouldn’t mind.)


A third of our album collection. My dad did the brunt of the work collecting most of these in his youth. Thanks Dad!

We’ll switch out those album covers at Christmastime!


Me and my man before we had kiddos.

This is a jar? Vase? Container.

This is a container we use to hold our ticket stubs. My favorites? Tony Hale at The Crossing, Phil Wickham with Shane and Shane (Shari took me! She knows I loves me some Phil Wickham!), and the Billy Graham museum (Amelia’s first road trip!).


My Daddy!


The fireplace we treasure! Bats moved in shortly after us, but have since moved out. Man oh man are they loud!


I found the stickies for that third platter!


What you’d see when you walk in. I’m showing you now, because if you do happen to come over, you might want to look at the floor as you walk…remember the blocks?


Also purchased some stickies for these babies, for above the new stove.

Silver from my Grandma, floral plate from Vovo.


This cabinet is what we use for a pantry. It was Zack’s grandparents from way back when.


The girls autumn aprons on display.

I realized the picture was crooked, but I decided I better leave it so you see something in it’s natural state. Meaning, my house is not nearly ever as clean as these pictures would have you think.


My sister got this menu for Miss P. at Estes Park in Colorado when we went to visit them. I also got my mom a shirt from here, since her name is Penelope as well.

Well, there you have it! Feel free to come see it in person. I’ll make sure to sweep the clutter into the corners and the dirt under the rugs before you arrive!



Future blogger? She can document all of those rocks she’ll be sorting!

Penelope decided to rummage through my Pinterest page this morning. She is really into browsing little girl things, dresses, toys, pretty hair, etc.


I bought this kit for Penelope a month or so ago. When I finally got around to helping her with it, I discovered it uses stain, not paint. So Mama did all of the work. Oh well. She thinks they are the bomb diggity despite not being able to paint them herself. I couldn’t think of where to put them so I fashioned a mobile out of fishing wire and an embroidery hoop. She’s pretty excited about it. 🙂


Daniel Tiger (A spin-off of sorts of Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood) was her while-Amelia-is-napping-activity of choice today. (She is sitting under that mobile.)


This morning was shady and chilly. I took advantage of this rarity, and let the girls swing until the gnats became aware of us. I spotted these colorful beauties while pushing my darlings! Autumn is c r e e p i n g in!!!!


Amelia sat by the door watching Maple watching her for quite sometime after our trip to the swing set.


Neighbors! Our neighbors make this house and the lifestyle we desire complete. Fresh fruits and vegetables from a garden? Yes please! We can’t wait until next spring when we will begin our own garden, but until then we are sure grateful for neighbors who share tips and food!!

(“My Miss Brenda” is also the one who gave us blackberries a while back)


More naps on the porch.


One wall in our dining room. There is usually a third silver platter on the wall, but it requires fresh “stickies.”


I put in a coffee area in the dining room this morning. Zack never knows what he is coming home to. 😉


WE HAVE A NEW OVEN!!!!!!!! I’m going to bake so many pizzas!!!!!!!!!


After swinging the ladies, I had to run back outside to capture those colorful leaves! I think Maple enjoyed to prolonged company.

We still have several hours left of this Thursday. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for us!

It’s Here!


We are now homeowners! The day is finally here! We spent the evening at the new house cleaning and moving stuff over from the apartment. We won’t move our beds over until next week. We’re going to paint inside this weekend before we let the baby sleep there.


Yesterday morning Terra left a house warming gift outside our door! The key has the girls initials engraved on it!!


Plenty of empty crawling space for A right now, plants on a pollen free porch…


…ipad baby sitters, a zillion rocks to count, and hot pink flowers…


…flip-flops almost on correctly, a two year old who loves to help, a yard full of great flowers (even if some are just weeds)…


…patient babies, tall gorgeous trees…


…and little girls exploring new rooms.

Pretty great start to our time in this house!

I will be posting before and after photos as we work on the house. So keep an eye out if you’re interested in that stuff!

Letting Excitement Flow Freely

front door

Zack and I are finally allowing ourselves to be excited about the house we are buying! We know this is the house we are meant to live in. To make our own. To experience.

We are giddy with the anticipation to get our hands on the key that fits this door. We are just waiting for paperwork to be completed at this point.

Some folks might think we are crazies for making this our dream home…we probably are, but we live for adventure and struggle. A new home just would not suit us (It was built in 1942). So many memories will be made here!


Photo above was taken by Penelope –Thanks P! Amelia is not used to a flash, she was actually SUPER happy Mama was holding her. 🙂
So, before any official news breaks or anything official happens, thought we’d let those who care know that we are home shopping. Prayers for our final decision and such are appreciated!!!! We have been on the hunt for months now, seen so many houses, talked to realtors, several banks, and scoured the interwebs for info. and we have narrowed it down to one we are in love with and suits us to a T.
If this house is not in God’s plan for us we will be waiting a couple months to try again, as home shopping can really take it’s toll. We have received lots of wonderful advice from folks, but have kept it rather under wraps and still have two definite people we still have to steal knowledge on the subject from. Feel free to shower us with advice!
Aside from house hunting, we have been shopping, cleaning, taking walks, cleaning, taking the girls to the indoor pool (fun!!), cleaning, and going to church. Oh! We also cleaned a bit, although there is no evidence of it whatsoever. Maybe we’re doing it wrong. Advice on how to keep a house clean longer than 5 minutes with two littles is welcome as well.
We turn in some paperwork to the bank today, meet with the realtor in the evening about an offer, and see where it goes.
I’m sure the grandparents will be glad we’re sticking in Missouri a bit longer…amiright?