Thursday, April 30, 2009

And another wall art idea!

I must be on some kind of kick today about wall art.......maybe because I need to get my rear in gear and finish the walls in both the bathroom and Brooke's nursery!

Anyway, I came across this idea and had to share. What an easy way to reuse and old t-shirt that got to small or got a stain on it!

Cool new wall art idea - and cheap too!

I think wall art is one of my biggest challenges when decorating a room. Even a reproduction print or a canvas piece from Hobby Lobby can run you more than $50. And then it probably still needs a frame for $20 or so! So multiply that by 4 or 5 pictures in every room and you are talking about some money!So anytime I see an idea for cheap wall art, I always sock the idea away for a rainy day. It'll just be a matter of time before I can use it in our house.

So I randomly came across this idea today and LOVE it, so I thought I'd share it all with you. I'm normally the type that just tosses this kind of little junk, but not anymore! Now I'm saving little things in a mason jar on my craft desk....hehe!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

When price doesn't matter....

I'm usually all about finding something for cheaper and I actually make it a game to see how cheap I can do everything from groceries/meal planning, to clothes, to home improvement. But this past week I've finally realized that there is one aspect of my life that I really could care less how much it costs......medical expenses!

I've always been on of those people that when I get the slightest bit of a cold, I run up to the closest pharmacy and grab tissues (the expensive ones with aloe even), throat drops (the expensive ones that actually taste good), and Calratin D along with bottles of gatorade and popsicles. Ususually it's like $40, which seems like such a waste, but I'd rather feel good than save money.
Well, for the first time in my life, this example was really put to the test. I've never been to the Emergency Room in my entire life, I've never really been more sick than the flu or a broken bone. I've never even had family or friends with anything big happen to them thank God! Well, it finally happened.......I have gallstones. I went to the ER about 8 wks ago, then again about 3 wks ago. I knew I'd have to have my gallbladder removed, but I never thought I'd spend time in the hospital for it. Well I had another "attack" two Sundays ago, but just kept taking Vicodin. Tuesday I tried to go to work but it just kept getting worse so I was forced to go t the ER when Vicodin wouldn't take the edge off the pain. I ended up getting admitted and spending the next 4 days in the hospital! It seriously was the worst experience in the world.
Anyway, we are now getting the bills for it all. I'm VERY thankful that I have such a hardworking husband who gets his butt up at 3am every morning to work a second job at UPS just so we can have good health care. So, the total for 3 ER visits and a 4 day stay in the hospital.........$112,000!!!!!! Can you believe that?!?!?!? And how much do we owe? Thank GOD, only $25 for each ER visit and $10 for the time I was admitted to the hospital. But to be honest, they could have said we owed the entire $112,000 and I still would have been alright with it. There is nothing worse than being in pain, not being able to do anything about it, and not knowing wha is wrong!
Anyway, things are finally getting back to normal around the house, so I promise, more new blog entries to come....

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I swear, I haven't been slacking!

Even though it's been awile since I last posted, I swear, I haven't just been lazy! Two weekends I went to the ER and found out I have acute chloecytisis....basically a fancy name for an inflammed gallbladder. I was given morphine (yeah, the good stuff) for the pain and basically sent home that night because they can't do anything until Brooke is born. So, three weeks after giving birth, I have the pleasure of going back into the hospital and getting my gallbladder removed. Apparently it's an easy out patient procedure, but still, with a two year old and a three week old, I'm not really looking forward to it!

But between the Vicodin pills (no really, I am feeling much better now), I have gotten a lot done to prepare for Brooke's arrival.

1. I made 6 nights worth of freezer meals. I have three chicken lime taco fillings and three regular taco fillings. Both were REALLY good. The chicken lime tacos can be found at and the regular chicken taco filling was made from this recipe We are both big taco fans so this is 6 easy meals for us......just throw on some soft tortillas or nacho chips, top with some cheese, sour cream, and some store bought salsa and guacamole and we're happy!

2. We finally got Brooke's nursery to "blank slate." I put her bedding in the crib and removed almost everything airplane related. The one frames still have plane prints in it, butthat is just until I finish the DIY art I'm working on, I promise. Here's some pictures though:

3. I also made some name art for Brooke's nursery. It's going to go in 6 seperate frames, either 5 x 7 frames or 8 x 10 frames with matting, I haven't decided for sure yet. Here is a sneek peak though.

4. We also celebrated Easter last weekend and I made two fabulous meals! Luke had his first Easter Egg Hunt too and LOVED it! We had breakfast at my parents house and I made a breafkast casserole and pecan sticky rolls. Both were out of this world delicious! The breakfast casserole can be found at and the pecan rolls an be at For dinner I made a mock Honey Baked Ham that really did taste just like the store made ham, only for $16.99! I found the recipe here I served it with some simple asparagus roasted in a pan with just a little butter and garlic and also hot crashed potatoes. They were SO good and can be found at Dessert was just a simple strawberry shortcake. The highlight of the day though was Luke and his hunt for all the eggs. He LOVES jellybeans but won't hesitate spitting out a flavor he doesn't like. =) Here's some pictures of him collecting his loot!

5. And lastly, we "tested" out our new photographer two weekends ago as well (before I collapsed over in pain). To say she passed with flying colors would be the understatement of the year. She was fantastic and Luke LOVED her. We decided to do a little something different and did an "urban" scene, but it was SO much fun. Check out the "teaser" photos at I cannot WAIT till Brooke gets here so we can shoot her newborn photos with her!

6. I've also got Brooke's newborn cloth diaper stash finally completed. I just ordered the last of what I needed today, but here is pictures of her stash:

Well, I think that about sums up our past two weeks. I've also been doing a LOT of shopping, getting everything ready for Brooke's arrival. No, it's not really things I need per se, but she's already having the standard set of most apoiled princess in the entire world! Haha!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Erin's Mood Board!

And I almost forgot to mention.....I had another slow day at work, so I made a mood board for a friend's master bedroom. I thought it turned out pretty well. I added the brown accent color though and I'll be going back and changing that tomorrow. =)


The Proposed AFTER:

And just in case your asking yourself.....isn't that the same furniture from yesterday??? Yes, it is the same Canopy collection from Walmart! Erin beat me to ordering it so there was no choice but to decorate the room around it! =) Plus, of course I think it will look great in any space!

Brooke's Baby Shower!

Okay, so I've promised everyone and their moms that I'd post pictures of Brooke's baby shower, so here they are:
I cannot believe I am sharing this with you, as I DON'T do belly shots, but someone snuck in a picture of me, so I guess I'll shame myself and share it all with you. This is my 30 wks belly! Gasp! And check out that facial expression.....I love having my picture taken, can you tell?
And here is Luke greeting everyone. Where did my little baby boy go???
This was the couple that my aunt invited to sing at my shower. They are auditioning for Nashville Star so they were so happy for an audience. They sang "In My Daughters Eyes," and they were AWESOME! How cool would that be if they became famous???
And of course another one of Luke....testing out all his little sisters toys and clothes. He was totally clueless that all the presents weren't for him! =)
And the end result.....WAY too much stuff for a small shower! I cannot believe that by inviting only 11 very close family and friends, I still brought home an entire carload of baby stuff! They were all too generous, but of course, I love it all and I love you all! I can't wait to meet Brooke and now dress her in all of these fun new clothes!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

We're getting a tax return!

Every year around tax time I cringe thinking about how much we owe. And it especially makes me even more mad when I hear everyone and they say they are getting $3,000 or $4,000 back and what big thing they are going to buy with it. Todd's accountant does our taxes since his business is rolled into our taxes, but every year, whatever I was going to get back didn't even come close to canceling out what he owed. But this year, lady luck must be on my side! This is the first year it was more beneficial to file seperate and I got Luke. So I was expecting back $1200. Todd was going to owe $800 though. I was searching around some money message boards though and learned that if we contributed to an IRA (which we had set up already, just didn't contribute this year because of the sucky economy, 28% of what we put in it would cancel out what Todd owed or boost my return. So we decided to contribute $5K (which we plan on using to pay for college, and if not needed for whatever reason, more for retirement). So we are now getting back close to $1500! Finally, I get to make a big purchase too! So what am I picking????? A new bedroom suite!

I know what your thinking......a $1500 bedroom suite, YEAH RIGHT! Let me introduce you to the Canopy Collection from Walmart! Yes, I said it, Walmart furniture. But if you remember, we actually have a piece from this collection already, the Anywhere Console in our dining room. It's solid wood and great construction. I've heard just as many positive reviews about the bedroom furniture too! So for a queen size headboard and footboard, long dresser, tall dresser and 2 nightstands all for under $1400!!!!!!! And even better, they ship for free to the store!

So here is the mood board I created to show Todd my ideas for the room. I really want something "beachy" and "airy" so I can wake up on the right side of the bed every day! I think a master bedroom should be the one place you can go, relax, and just be able to wind down. I can't think of a more serene place than the beach. So here it is: