DIY Painted Lunchbox

It's that time of year! Back to school craziness is starting and I wanted to share a quick DIY that we did last year that I never shared. Cora already had this lunchbox from the previous year, but we wanted to bring a little personality to it.  
+ Lunchbox
+ Paint & paintbrush
+ Tape
+ Paint pen

1 Tape off piping, velcro, and zippers.
2 Let your child go wild with the paints (keep the color palette limited so it doesn't get 'muddy'

3 (Optional) Use paint pen to draw a little pattern over top

The paint has held up over a year full of lunches and  I love getting to see Cora's projects on a daily basis.


Conversations With Cora : Part VI

"I'll get my vampire teeth when I'm 5! I'll turn five, then BOOM! Vampire teeth!
You'll get your vampire teeth when you turn 29. Boom! Vampire teeth!"

I wrote 'I love you' to Cora on our drawing thing and she started crying... "That is soooo sweet. I love you so much! I love you so much! I love our family sooo much!"

I fed dinner to Cora (something simple that I usually make her) "I'm a huge fan, Mom! I'm a huge fan of yours!"

GLUBS = Gloves
TATA! = Ta-da!
KATAR = Guitar
Those zombie dreams were great... and I wasn't even scared!  Cause I punched them in the FACE!!!

I was talking to a kid about his dog and asked if it was a boxer.  Cora chimes in and says "my dad boxes!"

"Cemeteries are golf courses that old people used to use... and now that's where they're buried."
We were listening to music and something about God and the sun. "God is the sun, so he is probably orange... just like me!"

Whenever I have to go back to work after a couple of days off, Cora always asks if I can skip work, when I told her no, she said "Call your boss and tell him you'll be there, then I can go dressed as you and they'll never know. So I need a costume so I can go to work as you." We chatted about what she would need for a costume, so she settled on red pants, purple shirt, white skin, freckles, brownish hair... and "you'll also need orange fabric so you can wear a Cora costume"
I love this sweet girl and how she always brings so much laughter to our lives on a daily basis.


A Magical Backyard

On our way home from a school playdate yesterday, we made an impromptu visit. We headed to the backyard to see if there were any flowers to pick to bring home. We walked into a yard full of Black-eyed Susans! We were being a little loud oohing and aaahing over the beautiful yard full of flowers until I saw something out of the corner of my eye. It was a deer! ...and another deer! We all just stared at each other until Cora made a little too much movement and the deer ran off. We picked a couple of flowers and Cora peeped down at the bottom level of the yard to see if she could spot the deer. The pictures aren't that great because it was already starting to get dark, but I'm hoping to get back there for some pictures in a morning golden hour. It was such a beautiful surprise!

If you could pick to have a field full of one flower, what would it be?


Cincinnati Art Museum

Last week, I took a little time off work to relax and have a little staycation with the girls. I had a dream about a bunch of my high school friends meeting up at an art show and the show had all kinds of crazy stuff, so I got the urge to go check out the Cincinnati Art Museum. I haven't been since I went for art history assignments in college, but I was excited to see some of the new stuff and for Cora to experience it for the first time. Above, Cora is admiring the Mihrab (prayer niche). This is right near the entrance and probably one of my top five things I loved from our trip.

Cora liked some things and didn't like others. We have a rule when looking at art (mostly from our trips to art fairs) that we only say what we like about things, and if we don't like it we just move on. Cora told me some things she liked, but we didn't spend too much time at any one piece. I've always been a Monet fan, so we had to stop and admire Rocks at Belle-Ile, Port-Domois (below).

We went to their current exhibit featuring Folk Art in America. Cora loved the little horse statues, lion statues (above), and the carousel figures of a rabbit and elephant. She had lots of questions about every single piece in the museum, so I did my best to answer what I could. At the Folk Art exhibit, we heard a tour guide talking about how when someone's loved one died, they would get a painting made of them. Cora is very curious about death so she had a lot of follow up questions about that.

Ida rode along in the stroller and seemed pretty content just riding along and looking at things. She stayed up the entire time and really only got a little fussy towards the end because you can't bring in food (and we're a family that loves our snacking).


Sunday Morning Worship

I love spending our Sunday mornings at a park or doing something nature-y. It is calming and relaxing and I love spending time in outdoors as a form of worship. Cora loves this little creek spot, so we decided to pack a picnic and spend a little bit of time hanging out, eating, and dipping our toes in the creek.

Cora loved dancing around the creek in the raining leaves. She'd gather all of the leaves she could and toss them into the water and watch as the leaves flowed down the creek. Cora was in her own little world the whole time and really only came to hang out with us while we were eating. It was the perfect little place to let her be on her own, but still let me hover over and keep an eye on her.

Ida was happy to sit on the blanket for a little bit. She loved watching Cora run around and just took in the views. I placed Ida on a rock and put her toes in the creek. She'd reach in and touch the water and grabbed at the leaves floating around her... and occasionally try to taste them.

It was the perfect little outing. It was relaxing, easy, and refreshing. I love adventuring with my girls and watching them fall in love with nature.


DIY Upholstered Headboard and Slipcover

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This project intimidated me a little bit because of the size of the headboard and the cost of the materials, but it ended up being a lot less daunting when I actually was in the midst of this DIY. I was pleasantly surprised at how much easier upholstering my own headboard was than I thought it would be.  This took me probably 3-5 hours to make a queen and two twin sized headboards while watching two kids and taking lunch and water breaks.

+ Staple gun and staples (I have a cheap one like this, but my hand was killing my by the end of the project)
+ Plywood
+ Fabric (I used April Rhodes Indigo Window Crystal for the queen and Two Daughters floral for the twins)

1. Cut the plywood to size.  I taped off the headboard size on the bedroom wall to make sure it was the size I wanted. I measured the taped off area and got it cut at the store. The queen is about 5'x3'. I used some of the extra pieces of that plywood for the twin headboards.

2. Lay out the egg carton on the board (I did most of my work with the board leaning on a chair and moving it around so I could go back and forth between the front and the back)
3. Lay out the batting over top of the egg carton.  I added a couple of extra layers of batting around the edge so it was a little more padded.  On the twin beds I was able to wrap the egg carton around it and that would be my preference on my next piece.

4. Staple a couple of times on each side to make sure it's secure and then staple every inch or so all the way around to make sure it's really taught and secure.
5. Lay the fabric down on the ground and put the headboard on top.  Staple a couple of pieces on each side and check the front to make sure it's wrinkle free before going back around and stapling ever half inch or more.
If you chose your final fabric to use on the last step, then you're all ready to hang.  I like to make life a little complicated sometimes, so I wanted to make a slipcover for this.  I have messy kids and we sometimes like to have dinner and movies in bed.  I knew that making a slipcover would make my life easier in the long run.  I originally was thinking of doing something that was kind of like a fitted sheet, but finally came up with this little idea.
6. Put fabric wrong side out on the headboard and pin at the corners and mark where you're going to sew.
7. Sew the corner.  I have no official training and not exactly sure how other people would do this.  I just folded and sewed in a straight line. It looks great so winging it is okay.
8. Sew the velcro strips in various spots around the bottom three sides of the fabric. On the queen, I put a velcro in the middle section, but it isn't really necessary.
9. Attach the remaining velcro strips to the plywood and voila, you're finished with the slip cover.
10. Fold the bottom corners and safety pin it together (this will allow you to take it off easily)
11. Hang using french cleat.

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