life is good, but random today…

So, I’ve got some random today.

First, I hope to have the {colton} and {cadence} dolls made before the giveaway is over.

I know it would be nice to SEE what you might get, but I kind of like the element of surprise, too.

You can get and idea of what they *may* look like here.

Maybe it will just be the fabrics…

Second, I am so inspired by Meg.

I never wrote about her first craft weekend, but I know I emailed the link to a few friends and family. I am now on her waiting list.

She hosted her second craft weekend last weekend.

Source: via stephany @ on Pinterest

More than anything, I would love to “host” a craft weekend of my own! Who wants to come out to the Oregon Coast and stay at a fabulous home on Bella Beach?


Let me know if you are interested…maybe we can make something happen!

Third, I’ve been making these for days.

Source: via stephany @ on Pinterest

Not sure what to do with them…decoration…Valentines gifts for preschool teachers…giveaway?!

Fourth, please check out another favorite blogger and what she has to say about raising a child with Down’s Syndrome.

I could not get the video to embed correctly, so please click on the link or visit her Facebook page or website.

I just think that what she has to say is really, really important.

And, lastly, life is good.

Source: via stephany @ on Pinterest

home is…changing something if you need to.

{summer rewind} bella beach

My post from yesterday about our road trip to Idaho inspired me to catch up on some of the fun adventures we had over the summer that I did not have the time to post about…because we were having too much fun!

Anyway, I think I decided to bend the rules sometime in June so I have some catching up to do!

I’m going to start with our trip to Bella Beach with Meme and Topher to celebrate the 4th of July and the little guy’s birthday.

Here it goes… On Friday, July 1st Ryan picked Meme and Topher up from the airport, drove them to our house, we had lunch, and headed to the beach! The kids napped on the way. The boys beat us to the house (we had to drive separate cars since we were bringing the dogs) and were already checked in and unpacking when we drove up. We settled ourselves in and headed down to say hello to the ocean. My dad loves seafood, so he ran to the store and they grilled these for appetizers. After dinner, Ryan, the kids, the dogs and I took a walk down to the beach. After a halfway decent nights rest (we did have trouble getting the kids to sleep and had an accident with the safety gate and a baby girl falling down the stairs) we were all ready for a day at the beach. Topher and I drove in to Newport to get a few things at Walmart and then we were ready to go! We played in the sand, flew our Elmo kite,fed squirrels that live in the rocks, and finally got baby girl to take a little nap in the Ergo!

I believe we also saw the first (and only) whale that we have ever seen on the Oregon Coast! We watched it swim down the beach for a long time.

After our fun at the beach we went back to the house for a little “quiet time” before drive to Lincoln City to find a kite store and have dinner. I think a couple of us sat in the hot tub, some washed beach toys, and eventually we all got cleaned up to head in to town. We found some kites, ate a lot of fried seafood, and stopped to have some ice cream. We all slept a bit better after a full day and a big meal to get ready for a trip to the aquarium. Meme, Topher, the kids and I went to the aquarium while Ryan stayed back at the house to get some work done. It was a quick trip. The little guy was cranky and baby girl only wanted Meme to carry her. So, we got them in the car and met Ryan at Rogue where we picked up a growler for later. We also made another stop at Walmart (it’s amazing how there is always something you “need” at Walmart)!

It was foggy and misty when we left the house and by the time we returned the sun was shining and it looked to be a perfect day to spend at the beach! We took our supplies down to the beach…lunch, blankets, towels, umbrella, sand toys, and our new kites! Topher got the kind that you fly using both hands…he figured it out pretty quick and it was fun to watch. We got a box kite that was easy to fly!

The dogs also got to come down to the beach for a while…they were very happy.

After our fun at the beach baby girl fell asleep on Meme’s lap around 6 pm and slept until at least 6 am the next morning. Ryan, the little guy, and I went down to the beach around 9:30 pm to see if we could catch one of the official fireworks shows on the beach. There was still sun on the horizon at almost 10 pm. The wind and the smoke from the campfires and non-official fireworks was getting to me, so I headed back to the house while Ryan and the little guy tried to light a few sparklers.

Eventually they made it back to the house and we all went to bed to the sounds of fireworks.

The next morning Topher headed down to the beach early to set up a spot for all of us. The boys drove in to Lincoln City to look for some fresh seafood and get more kite string for Topher’s new kite (Topher also came back with a second kite…he LOVES toys!).

In between our beach fun we also played with some of the new toys that the little guy (and baby girl) was getting to open each day to celebrate his birthday, the dollar store toys that I brought along (bubbles, airplanes, etc.), and a cool t-shirt craft that Meme taught us!

We made a lunch while the guys were out and headed down to the beach to celebrate the 4th of July. We flew kites, shot water guns, played in the sand, and people watched.

Once again, baby girl fell asleep before dinner. No naps and lots of fun will do this to an almost two year old!

We decided to celebrate the little guys birthday on the 4th since we would be leaving the next morning to head back to Portland and Meme and Topher would be going back to Denver, too.

The little guy declared his 4th birthday a “Batman-Lego-Mario” birthday, so a lot of his gifts followed that theme. As well as the decorations (superhero) and cupcakes.

Baby girl woke up from her “nap” just in time for cupcakes!

As always, we enjoyed great food and wine (and beer) with Meme and Topher, but what I loved sharing the most are the memories that we made for ourselves, and especially, the little guy and baby girl.

This is why I write this blog. So our loved ones can be a part of our adventures whether they are with us or not. And, so the little guy and baby girl have a record of our adventures when they might have been too little to remember.

Our last morning was spent packing up the cars and taking one last walk down to the beach to say goodbye…or in our case, see you next time!

home is…creating memories.

{You can read about our other visits to Bella Beach here, here, here, here, and here!}

{nana and bops visit} day 5 and digital photography questions

This was Nana & Bops last full day in Oregon and the day we had to leave the beach.

Of course, it was finally beautiful and sunny!

We reluctantly left the beach to pack up the cars and head back to Portland.

We did, however, make a stop at Brewer’s on the Bay on our way home.

I am happy to finally have these posts up. It takes a long time to write a post with photos, etc. I spent hours while at my parents house in March writing my blog posts and uploading the photos. I am so thankful to be using Picasa again to create these photo collages! I take photos everyday. When we are on vacation or on an adventure I take lots of photos. I get overwhelmed by them and delay writing my posts because of that.

Do any of you have tips for cataloging photos? I love digital photography because you can just delete photos if you don’t want them, but I usually wait until they are all uploaded on my computer and them sometimes I never get around to it.

If you have any tips or tricks, please share!

home is…digital photography and fun with family adding up to A LOT of photos!

{nana and bops visit} day 4

This post should have been written a month ago…sorry for the delay. Better late than never, right?!

Day 4 of Nana and Bops visit was Saturday, May 21st!.

This was our full day at the beach.

After getting to bed late on Friday night, baby girl woke up crying at 2 am. I ended up sleeping with her upstairs and at some point the little guy joined us in the bed, too.

I cooked breakfast for everybody while the kids were occupied by Nana and Bops and Ryan was taking the dogs out for a walk on the beach.

We had eggs, bacon, fresh fruit and english muffins.

Then we got dressed and headed down to the beach to hit low tide.

We spent almost two hours playing on the beach with buckets and shovels.

Baby girl was exhausted and I took a little extra walk around the neighborhood before heading back to the house for lunch. She fell asleep on my back in the Ergo and had a little bit of a nap.

We had lunch and then Ryan and I headed out to get some fresh fish for dinner.

After taking a drive through Lincoln City and buying some steak and other supplies at Safeway we headed south back towards Mojo Coffee. We grabbed a Stumptown and stopped at the Crab Shack to get some fresh halibut for dinner.

We had a great dinner of fish, corn, roasted potatoes, and salad.

After dinner I headed out to try to get baby girl to sleep in the ergo again, but she didn’t want to miss out on anything. So, we said goodnight to the ocean with Nana, Bops and the little guy and headed back up to the house where Ryan had a campfire ready for roasting marshmallows…well, almost ready. We waited a bit while he worked on the fire and then roasted marshmallows.

I put baby girl to bed and Ryan took the little guy on a late night walk to say goodnight to the ocean again.

I have an interesting story to tell about what I saw in the sky when they were gone, but I will save that post for later.

Here are some photos from the day.

I made this collage using Picasa and the tutorial from Emily at Jones Design Company. I am thrilled to be using my old friend Picasa as this will make blogging with photos so much easier for me!

home is…finally catching up with my blog posting (now we’ll see if i ever get our 2010 photo album done)!