Monday, September 27, 2010


So when I finished the desk project, I jokingly mentioned that I needed to find some cool chairs to put with it. Really, I never imagined I would actually find some. Well, a couple of weeks ago I spotted two diamonds in the rough in a pile of bulk pick-up on the side of the road (Gotta love bulk pick-up.) I also said I don't make a habit of dumpster diving, but I think it just may have turned into one. I have to have something to do in my "spare" time since I don't have school projects anymore.

I was on my way to pick up the babysitter and I didn't have much time to maneuver them to fit, so the back of the van kept opening mid-route. It was kind of funny. But these are the measures that must be taken if you are going to scrounge through somebody else's garbage and take stuff home.

Here is the before:
And here is the after:

Yes, I painted them purple. I must be in my "purple" phase, but I assure you, I've got plenty of other colors in store for my future projects. I just felt like purple would add the right color pop to this part of the house. And hey, you can't go wrong with free chairs--if nothing else I can just put them back on the curb.

Okay I didn't just paint them purple, first I sanded them, spray painted them yellow, then spray painted them purple, and then I sanded parts of the purple to expose the yellow. At this point I felt that the purple I did was a little too bright and glossy. I still wanted to stick with purple though, so I got a slightly different shade, then painted and sanded again. Way more work then it should have been, but like I said, I need something to do. Then I put on some poly-urethane and called the paint job good. I like how the color turned out and how you can see the details in the yellow.

Here is a close up of some of the details (Okay, seriously though, don't look too closely. It is so far from perfect):
I got the upholstery fabric on sale at JoAnn's. I know it's a light fabric and that my kids will probably smear spaghetti sauce and pudding all over them in a matter of weeks, but I'm going to scotch gaurd them and hope for the best. I'd never upholstered anything before so it was a bit of a learning curve. The seat cover? No problem. For the back, I covered a piece of cardboard in the shape of the chair with quilt batting and fabric, then glued it on. The front was the most tricky because I had to use upholstery tacks which by the way are sharper than they look. I unwittingly sliced my pinky while doing one and didn't realize it till I saw blood all over the fabric. It came out thanks to Oxy-clean. I cut another finger doing the second one too, but they're done.

Here they are at the computer desk:...our comfy, purple, re-purposed roadkill rescues. I love them!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Grocery Clerk, Teeth and Being Pretty

A while back as we drove away from the grocery store Erin told me that she knew what she wanted to be when she grows up. I was so excited because she's never mentioned anything before. "What?" I asked. "You know those people that check out your groceries at the store? That's what I want to be." Not a teacher or a doctor or a musician or even a princess--a grocery store clerk. Later I asked her why and she said, "Because it looks easy." I asked, "Don't you want a job that is fun?" Her response was, "Oh, I think it looks fun too." I may have mentioned that it would be a good job during high school or to earn money for college, but that ultimately she wouldn't make much money doing that. Although... every time I ask her about college she assures me she isn't going. Maybe she's on the right track after all.

Later she told me, "Mom, you know how I know that Dora show isn't real? It's because that monkey wears boots... and talks." So, not because it's a cartoon? I laughed.

That same week Erin lost her second tooth, or should I say that Jared pulled it out with dental floss. After seeing that Marissa became obsessed with her teeth. One night she came up to me with dental floss and said, "Mommy, my tooth hurts. Can you pull it out?" I told her I would pull it out in four years. She said okay, then ran off yelling, "Guys, mommy said she would pull my tooth out in four years!" Then I went to check on the status of the teeth brushing and found Marissa on the counter with some dental floss in her hands. I asked if she had brushed her teeth and she said, "I'm not done pulling out my tooth." (So I actually wrote this story before she knocked her tooth out. I guess she wasn't kidding about wanting it out.)

Tonight as I was tucking Marissa in I said, "Goodnight my sweet Marissa." She looked up at me, put her hand on my cheek and said, "Goodnight my sweet mommy" and then kissed me. I love that girl!

The other day Alex found the 72 hour kits and was asking what they were for. I told them they were for emergencies and he said, "So like if someone can't breathe or something then you use those?" Yes, not breathing is definitely an emergency, but hopefully he'll realize that's not the solution by the time he can babysit.

About a week ago I went to the store with just Erin. Two people in line kept telling her how beautiful she was and how she should be a model. In the car I told her how everyone keeps telling her that and she said, "Yeah, I know. How did I get to be so pretty anyway? I mean, I'm way prettier than you and daddy." (A little dose of Erin is always good for the self-esteem.) This, of course, is said in all seriousness. She has no idea she is being funny and would not appreciate being laughed at. She was just stating the facts. And I must agree, she is prettier than us and I don't know how that happened either.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Twins, again.

Remember this post?

I was looking at some old pictures and came across a few of Alex that looked just like Connor. Jared and I were having a good chuckle over it. Some of them are way too hard to tell them apart in. Not too much genetic variation I guess. Crazy! See if you can tell who's who.

Friday, September 3, 2010


My friend Barbara is a talented woman and sews some amazing clothes. She has a shop on Etsy and needed some last minute models to show the clothes off better. She is even featured on the blog Make It and Love It where she has a free give-away. My girls were lucky enough to be chosen to model. Our other friend Heidi is a talented photographer and did some really creative shoots with them. I definitely need lessons from both of them. Erin was a good model and kept striking some great poses. It could have gone either way with her, but I'm glad she got into it. She looks so cute!Marissa was another story. She would not crack a single smile no matter what we did. Tough crowd! I think she was a little unsure of what was going on, but she still looked cute in Barbara's little tutu.
Later that night I decided I should learn how to use my DSLR camera and went out back to practice doing the blurry background with the kids. Even though Marissa's hair was messy and she was in her pajamas, I still think she looked so cute. These are also the last pictures I took of her with all her teeth.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

A Piano Bench, a 2 Year Old and Two Dentists Later

Today was quite the day for Marissa, and for me too I might add. I was sitting on the couch feeding Connor while Marissa and her little friend were playing the piano right in front of me. Somehow, as Marissa was getting off the piano bench she ended up falling face first into the top of a storage box. She immediately started crying and I could tell she was bleeding. I put the baby down and took her to the bathroom to wash the blood off. I thought she had split her lip or was bleeding on the inside of her mouth, but when I opened her mouth to check it out I noticed... HER TOOTH WAS GONE!!! Ahh!!

This is the scene: the piano bench, the box top, the bloody dress and the toothless two year-old (complete with an ice-pop, yogurt on the face and a freshly pulled-out hair-do)
This was a first for me, but somehow it seems like sort of a right of passage in parenthood. We've had stitches (when Erin split her chin open at age 3), a hospitalization for sickness (also Erin at age 10 months for croup), we've had a bloody nose (Alex a few months ago), we've had more than our share of people passing out (mostly Alex, and Jared, but also Marissa--I'll get to that), and now we've had a kid knock their front tooth out (Marissa, today). No broken bones though--yet.

I went back to the scene of the accident and found the tooth. I'd always heard you were supposed to put it in milk and take it to the dentist to see if it could be put back in, and for some reason I thought they would be able to. I called the pediatric dentist and got a recording saying they were out to lunch for another hour or so, but they gave an emergency number (FYI: they never even checked the message till 2 hours after I left it. What kind of emergency service is that?). I knew this injury didn't warrant a 911 call, but to me it was a true dental emergency. The tooth was already soaking in milk and I needed to know what to do. I ended up calling my old dentist who I'm not too crazy about (I'm in the process of getting a new one), but I had this guy's number handy and he is a dentist after all.

I took her in, along with the other three kids, and had Jared meet me there. Unfortunately, the dentist said that the tooth was broken at the root and it could not be put back. I don't know, I guess I was hoping. And I didn't exactly examine the thing before I put it in milk. He did say that the other piece of it was probably still in there and that we would have to call a specialist to get it out. So after we picked up Erin from school I called the pediatric dentist again and they told me to come in right then. I guess this part turned out better than it could have because they took an x-ray and found that there was no part of the tooth left in there, so no digging around for it. Phew. But they also said that if we want to get one of those false teeth for her, we can't put it in till around January because her molars aren't all the way in yet.

I know that nobody really cares about it as much as we do because she's not your kid. Hey, this happened to one of the kids in nursery and I didn't seem too concerned about it. But the reality is that I am a little bummed by it. I know it's just a baby tooth and that she'll get another one eventually, but she is only two and it'll be a long time before that new one comes in. Didn't she just barely get this one? When I told Erin and her friends about it they were so jealous of Marissa's luck, as any first grader would be. A good portion of their life is spent wiggling teeth, daydreaming about loosing teeth, putting teeth under their pillows and showing off their newest gap and tooth fairy loot to their friends. And the gaps look normal... at that age. Not as a baby. Marissa just looks so, different.

A close-up
This kind of reminds me of the time Erin cut her hair to the roots a couple of years ago. (FYI--it's all grown out now. Yay!) Your perfectly good and normal looking child is now, well... damaged. And that's a rotten feeling to have as a parent. Maybe this was how my parents felt when I broke my perfectly good nose two weeks before my wedding. I distinctly recall my mom saying, "I gave you a good nose, look what you've done with it!" (It was pretty crooked, I'll admit. I will also say that after the straightening I think it actually looked better than before.)

I'm still not sure about the fake tooth. Most people I've talk to think I should just leave it the way it is, and I would if she were like 4. But she has a lot of time to live without it and you know people are going to make all sorts of comments. Any opinions? Is it vain to want her to have that tooth again? She, of course, doesn't care a bit about it. She just keeps telling people matter-of-factly that she knocked her tooth out, then she proceeds to jump off the couch or do some other dangerous stunt.

Seriously, I guess I shouldn't be surprised that this happened and should be grateful it wasn't any worse. She is a daredevil and currently loves jumping off everything, to my dismay. Two weeks ago the other kids were jumping off a table at the church, for a reason that I am not entirely sure, and Marissa decided to follow suit. Right before she jumped I said, "Marissa, don't jump off that" and right after I said that she tripped as she jumped, fell on her head and passed out. Today she was even jumping off the coffee table in the lobby of the dentist, which I suppose is a good place to knock out another tooth.

That was the worst that happened to her today, but not the only thing. After returning from the first dentist, Alex and Connor were asleep, so I popped them in the stroller and had Marissa ride her bike to pick up Erin. Note to self: bad idea. Marissa rode off the curb and fell of her bike on the way home. Then after returning from dentist 2, she was taking off her shoes and holding onto the door jamb when Erin closed her fingers in the door! As if this wasn't enough, she cried so hard without breathing that she passed out again. Like I said, rough day for the kid.

Sheesh, I'm a little drained from trying to keep my kids alive today. Goodnight!

Side note: it wasn't till much later that I noticed that I'd been traipsing around all afternoon with blood smeared all over my shirt. I'm just saying...