The porch is near completion

The screening is done on the porch and we love it! It is 90% done but I'd love to paint the floor to brighten it up even more.
We love to spend time out there---bug free!

Homemade goodness

Here's some homemade goodies I've been making lately. Granola is a must for the boys. Mike loves his granola and yogurt. And our new favorite yogurt is greek yogurt. SOOOO yummy and creamy! Secondly, homemade bagels. Fun to make and not too hard either! We made plain at first but now I think we'll start experimenting with other flavors. Canaan has a special request in for Cinnamon Crunch bagels.

Romance in the backyard...

Mike and I have been talking for weeks about screening in our back porch. We didn't like the traditional approach to screening in but really had no ideas. That was until I picked up a magazine this month and saw a great idea! It was this kit you could buy that essentially put mosquito type netting up on tracks and it drapes yet keeps the bugs out. The problem was the $500 price tag for the kit. YIKES!
This is where I really get my ingenuitive juices flowing. I love to figure out a way to take something expensive and do it for cheap!
So this weekend, while at Ikea, I found these pkgs of netting type drapes. They are huge and come 2 in a pack for $4.99. We have ended up only needing 3 packs (I had bought 5) so we were up to $15.00 for material. Then Mike went to Home Depot and bought beautiful white crown molding that we used to secure the netting to. All in all, $37 for a newly screened in porch. It totally matches the feel we had going with the chandelier we hung out there. Now we just need to find some outdoor furniture. We'd love to actually hang a bed mattress out there as a swing (sounds weird but looks so cool and is amazing).
Anyhow, it was a great night last night. I love that we live in a house with a gorgeous backyard that actually has lightening bugs everywhere at night! I love to look out and see them lighting up all over the place. We let the boys stay up REALLY late (10pm) to play and try to catch the lightening bugs. They had so much fun---and so did mommy and daddy :)
We came in to the smell of bagels baking in the oven. That is another post though.....I finally made homemade bagels!

Abundant Lettuce!

Well the only thing that is ready for picking in our garden right now is lettuce. And LOTS of it. In fact, I've had to let some of it just die b/c in reality we just don't eat as much salad as we should I guess.
We do have tomatoes, peppers and watermelon planted, just not ready. The downside to gardening is the nice chigger bites I have on my torso. They are itchy and ugly and no fun.
This weekend was fun and relaxing. We had a little yard sale on Saturday morning followed by a shopping spree of sorts at the Dillards here in town that was closing. Everything in the store was 75% off with an additional 80% off. Needless to say, amazing deals! I even was able to snag one of the stores clothing racks to keep my Ebay stuff organized. I brought it home and Mike spray painted it a cute blue color for me :)
Sunday we headed to Cincinatti for the day. We went to a park and to Ikea for dinner. It was a great weekend overall with so much to be thankful for.

Creative Play

The boys are doing great this summer. It has actually been flying by! Canaan is doing VBS this week in the mornings and Ezra and I have been shopping and catching up on things at home. Hope your summer is going well!

My 30th

I haven't posted much lately b/c pretty much life is just crazy busy and I haven't had a chance to sit and write much.
My 30th birthday came and went. Now I am officially in my 30's. It really was such a great birthday. Mike spoiled me rotten and my friends lavished such love on me. I am such a lucky gal!
I got wonderful gifts, flowers, kisses and hugs, and yummy food for my special day. My friend Kristie sent me a great box filled with wonderful treasures like fabric, handmade goodies, and books. So sweet! My sister and brother sent beautiful flowers as well. I got wonderful phone calls and emails that just warmed my heart so much. Mike got me an awesome new camera for all of my creative endeavors! If I can ever discipline myself to sit down and read the manual, I may actually take some good pics!
We went out to a wonderful dinner and met 15 friends for drinks and dessert. So much fun! It is amazing to have a community of friends that we can invest in and be invested in.
Speaking of our friends, keep our dear friends Shawn and Julie in your prayers. They were out of town up in Columbus and were in a serious car accident. Praise God they are alive and aside from a few broken bones they will be ok. Keep them in your prayers!

A Birthday Present

This is a birthday present for my mom....I think I am safe---I don't think she has ever read my blog :)
Anyhow, it is the first one of its kind I have made. For those of you who know me and my sewing habits, you know that I don't like patterns. Or maybe it is just that patterns don't like me. At any rate, this was made without a pattern and it was really easy! It is lined and has 2 inside pockets.
Things here are good but busy. Thus the lack of blog posts as of late. I do have things to tell you all so I will try to post again tomorrow. Until then....

The New Kitchen Curtain

Easy Dinner!

For a great summer dinner idea visit my recipe blog that I collaberate with other friends on. You can get there here

Where Does the Time Go?

I am getting incredibly sentimental about Canaan going to Kindergarten. So sentimental in fact that I laid in bed thinking about it last night and cried myself to sleep :(
I mean, seriously, how does this all happen so fast? Mike asked me why I was so upset about it and I think its because its the end of this phase of our lives. The end of days when I will have Canaan with me all day long. We have had 5 years day in and day out going to the park, cleaning the house, making dinner, going shopping, reading books, and throwing frisbee. Those days are coming to an ending and soon he will be off to school for 7 hours a day.
I know you might be thinking, "then just homeschool him if you are that sad about it" but really he is so excited to go to school. He loves to learn and try new things and I think going to school is going to be better for him than staying at home learning.
Anyhow, those are my thoughts today. My little sweet Canaan is growing up! I have to learn to embrace it and encourage him along this life's journey not to hold him back because of my own selfish reasons (however good they are :)
He is doing so well though. He loves science and anything having to do with outerspace. He is kind to Ezra, respectful to others, and so loving of us. He loves to learn about the Bible and always has some deep theological question in his mind. I am incredibly proud of him and know he is going to have a blessed and wonderful life.

Cheers to a great weekend

Oh how I love weekends. Weekdays are just a means to getting to the weekend. Not that my weekdays are bad at all but there is just something about a Saturday morning drive in the country or a Sunday afternoon nap on the couch that is simply wonderful!
This weekend was very refreshing and nice. Mike took both of the boys to a Cincinnati Reds game which meant I had the day to myself. I spent the morning at an auction (see my other blog here)
I got some shopping errands done and met some girlfriends for dinner that night. Mike and the boys had a blast at the game. It was Canaan's first baseball game and he absolutely loved it.
Today we were blessed, as we are each Sunday, to go to our amazing church and be surrounded by an amazing group of friends. It is so exciting to be in a community that thrives to reach out to those less fortunate and to come together and encourage each other.
Tonight it is slightly muggy and warm outside but in our oasis of a backyard it is magical to just sit on our porch, drink a glass of wine, and listen to the birds and crickets as the sun goes down.
Have a great week ahead!