Thursday, December 1, 2011

Ballard Designs & Modern Family: Destiny?

Pin It

I LOVE Modern Family.  In fact, I think the family dynamic between Claire and Phil is hysterical and somewhat oddly similar to Derek and I at times.  I mean we don’t have a deadbolt on our bedroom door or anything…

Ok.  That was an awful tease if you haven’t watched the show.  To understand the above door lock segment you’ll need to watch this…

Where was I?  Oh.  Yes.  Modern Family is brilliant.  And so are locks on bedroom doors.

Anywho, I often refer to Derek as “Phil” when he pulls a Phil-like action.  Or when we’re watching Modern Family, I’ll just knowingly look over at him with raised brows.  Like, “Yep, you know you’re SO PHIL!”

Best of Phil…

Unfortunately, he also gives me that same look saying I’m Claire.  And Claire isn’t the fun one.   I may be guilty of acting a little like this sometimes…

So, I’m apparently not fun all the time.  Boo.  Happy-valen-birtha-versary to you too!

She’s all Type A and perfectionista.  Ok…I see the similarities.  Claire is also a blond.  Another check.

Well, imagine my delight when two of my favorite things collide.  Coincidence?  I think not.


Sabrina & Phil.  The holiday edition.  Immortalized for all time in the 2011 Ballard Designs Holiday catalog. 

It’s fate. 

It’s a holiday miracle. 

Ok…maybe not so much, but it did give me a good much needed chuckle.

Modern Family – Favorite Phil and Claire quotes:

" can't have two fun parents... You know that kid Liam who wears pajama pants to school and pays for things with a hundred-dollar bill? Two fun parents.” – Claire

"Honey, you're doing that thing where you say what I want you to say, but your tone seems mean." ~Phil

And last, but not least, a quote that I’ve actually said myself about a month ago…

"I know I went a little fast back there, but really 40's the same as 35." – Claire

And don’t even get me started on their Clive Bixby and Julianna alter egos. 

Thanks to Phil, Claire and all the other Dunphy’s for making us laugh…at ourselves!

Pin It

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mom’s Frame Redo

Pin It

My mom offered this adorable frame on a visit home this summer…


Ok.  It’s not adorable at all.  To me, the little girl is creepy.   As is the country blue color scheme circa 1985.


Complete with dusty ribbon and doily trim to boot!


Mom didn’t seem to mind my idea of giving this piece of “art” a complete makeover, so I went to work on it.  First, I dismantled the entire thing.  Next, I went straight to my trusty can of Heirloom White.


Then, I ordered an 11x14 print of a picture I took of my boys last year. 


Yes, I’m a little obsessed with walking away shots.  Its one of the few ways to get a natural look with my kiddos. 

The frame wasn’t a standard size (14x18), so I bought a 16x20 mat from Michaels with an 11x14 picture opening.  I had to cut an inch off each side of the mat which is cheaper to do than ordering a custom mat.  I put the whole thing back together after giving the glass a good cleaning and had this…


As usual, its hard to get a good picture of a picture.


I took it back home this past weekend to share with my mom.


She LOVES the result as much as I do.


All together, I spent around $7 for the entire project.  I purchase most of my prints through Adoramapix.  Check them out.  They are a great professional lab and their prices are very reasonable. 

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Pin It

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

New Wall Art from Easy Canvas Prints

Pin It


My boys are my favorite works on art.  My walls are covered with photos of them. So, I was SO excited when the awesome people from Easy Canvas Prints contacted me about reviewing their photo canvas products.


Easy Canvas Prints is an easy to use site that puts your photos on canvas.  As you can see, the results are wonderful.  Please keep in mind that a picture of a picture doesn’t do the clarity justice though.

I wanted to do a family photo shoot again this year, but time got away from me.  Luckily, I found time to snap a few of the boys, which I used for this great canvas. 

The Easy Canvas Prints site itself was a snap to use. I really like the feature where the show how your canvas will look over a couch to give you an idea of size. 


My canvas is a 12x18 with mirrored images on the sides.


They also have the option of wrapping the image on the side or using a solid color as well.

The quality if the canvas is great too!  Nice and heavy, like a true work of art.  OH and it comes ready to mount on the wall as well.  The canvas was shipped with extreme care…lots of wrapping to be sure it didn’t get any bumps or bruises on its journey to my house.


Thanks to Megan and Easy Canvas Prints for this great opportunity.  I love how this turned out and know it will a cherished piece in our home.

Check out Easy Canvas Prints on Facebook!  “LIKE” their Facebook page and get 50% off & free shipping on your next order!  Great idea with the holidays coming up!

One more shot since my boys are so darn cute…IMG_8876

I’m sure I’m not going to get them to hold hands like this I years to come.

Pin It

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Kid Chatter: Fall, moles and Big Boy schools

Pin It


Braden:  “Mommy, when will the snow come?”

Me: “Do you see how all the leaves are turning color and some of them are falling on the ground?  Well, when all the leaves fall off, then the snow will come.”

I find him later, plucky leaves off all of the trees.

Me:  “B, what are you doing honey?  The neighbors probably won’t like you doing that.”

Braden:  “I’m getting all the leaves off the tree so that we can have snow.”

Smart kid.


Then he had a near panic attack the other day when I was taking his temperature.  I noticed he had a brown dot under his arm and thought it was a piece of fuzz.

Me:  “Oh…that’s not fuzz.  You have a mole under your arm.”

Braden:  “Whaaaaa???  Is it bad?  Will it hurt?  Oh NO!  Not a MOLE!”

I tried to reassure that we all get them.  I showed him some of mine.  Didn’t help.

Braden:  “I got a mole!!!  It hurts so bad.  I have to show daddy.  Ouch!”


Lanham mostly relishes the fact that he’s the older brother.  He’s gets to attend the “BIG” school and even the fact that he gets to pack a lunch each day is something to brag about.  Braden watches in envy.  However, Lanham doesn’t always see the green grass of grade school.  Nope.  Here’s what his response to “Get dressed for school.” has been lately.

Lanham:  “Ugh.  Again?  I have to go to school every day.  And every day is like a weekend for Braden.  He’s so lucky.”

What he doesn’t realize is that Braden totally wants to be in that big boy school each and every day with him.  Rather than going on crazy bargain hunting shopping trips with mama. 

Love my kids.  Love their chatter. 

And I put the best snippets here so that I never forget one little tidbit of it.

Pin It

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Shutterfly Winners!

Pin It

Go to the Shutterfly home page.

The winners for my Shutterfly Card Giveaway are commenters:

#1 (no joke #1 actually won!) – Theresa

#11 – Tracey from Just Another Mommy Blog

#6  - Sally from Blessed Existence

Congratulations!  I will send you your codes via e-mail for you 25 FREE Shutterfly Cards!

Winners were selected using the Random Number Generator at Random.Org.

Thanks to all who entered and I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season!

Pin It

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Down Home – Fall Harvest

Pin It

My love for the wide open spaces of my childhood runs deep.  It’s a place where I can let my hair down and my camera go wild.


There is always something beautiful to shoot.  Something that I need to capture with my camera to remind me of where I came from. 


Luckily I have a very understanding husband.  He knows that his country mouse turned city mouse wife needs to go home, get dirty and relax now and again.  I love you, Derek.  Thanks for getting me. 

A few months ago, I headed back home for a night to hang out with my family and hopefully get some shots of corn country during harvest.  The weather wasn’t working so well for me this time.  No blue skies.  Mostly overcast. 

However, I had a blast four wheeling with one of my lifelong hometown buddies and petting this ol’ gal…


Buckcephus.  Or Buck.  Poor girl got named by boys.   

We visited a farmer friend that I used to bring treats to back in the day during harvest.


Of course, he got out of his tractor and said, “Where’s my brownies, girrrrrl?”  Home.  Things never change.


That’s the coal mine in the background.

Off we went to this cool old bridge hidden amongst the corn.  It crosses over a stream that people from home call it the lake ditch.


Not going to lie…I was FREAKING out about walking over this thing.  Obviously, IDOT hadn’t been out for inspections in quite a while.  Trees were literally growing in the boards.  I faced my fears, and tried to snap away at this awesomely rusty piece of history…while sitting in poison ivy.

All the while being laughed at by my supposed friend from home.  Apparently, I’ve gotten “soft” living up north.  Or so he says.

The view below was pretty cool too.  The water level was so low from the summer drought that you could see this huge catfish hanging out.


Not the greatest pictures of the fish, but we were pretty high up remember.

I barely snapped this last one before sundown. 


It was a cold ride back, but so worth it.  Just what this stay at home mommy needed to re-charge the batteries.  Call me crazy, but this is my “fun time”.  Well, this helps a little…


The end.

Pin It

Friday, November 11, 2011

Heirloom White Love: Candle Holder & GW Lamp Update

Pin It

Heirloom White spray paint from Rustoleum has some sort of mysterious magical properties.  It can turn Goodwill junk into decorating gold…er..white.  Off white actually.

Remember my question to you all about candle holder dilemma


Five or three or four???  Well, I left the four candles for quite a while.  Then I found these at GW a while back…


Then waited a little longer because this whole life thing kept creeping up on me.  I finally got around to busting out my Heirloom White on these guys and here’s what I have now.


Yep, FIVE! 


Phew.  Doesn’t that make the world seem a little more in order.  I mean really.  Who has FOUR candle holders?  That’s so unbalanced in the world of decorating.  Although in the world of math, four is probably better than five, but that’s the nerdy me creepin’ out a bit.

I do have to note that the above picture has one lopsided candle that makes me cringe.  Just sayin’.

Moving on…

So, while I was spraying away, I also made a BIG improvement to this little lamp I found, also at GW.


Don’t laugh.  I saw its potential and jumped at it…not that anyone else was looking for a possible bed bug infested Lion Kingish stuffed animal adorned lamp or anything.

How could I go wrong with a $4 price tag?  I couldn’t even get a lamp shade for that price.  And the size was perfect Lanham’s desk.  I can therefore work with pastel lions.

First, I had to remove Simba from his perch.  Or is that Nala?  Either way, I took a pair of pliers to the poor thing and ripped it off.


Kind of felt like the defacing of baby Jesus from a few DIY episodes back.  As you can see, the lion removal left me with a pencil eraser size whole, but I’ll deal with that later.

A few coats of Heirloom White and now I have this…


Despite the messy cords (this is a pre-teen boys room after all), I really like how it turned out.  I left the hole of Simba for now, but then came across another issue.

During the day we have this…


However, once its turned on, we have this…


Fail?  Not sure what to do here.  I’m pretty sure Lanham’s not going to dig have a Lion King shadow box on his desk in his big kid room.

Ideas and suggestions welcome.  Please!!!  I spray painted the shade because the images were printed on the outside.  Guess that wasn’t good enough.  I could try to cover it in fabric?  Never ventured there before, but I’ll do anything to prevent buying a shade that will cost more than this entire lamp. 

Until then, Mr. Big Boy will have to deal with the Circle of Life.  Just don’t turn it on when your friends are over honey.

Pin It

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Photography : Oh Baby!

Pin It

I haven’t posted much on the photography side of things lately and these little ones needed some face time on the blog for sure.  I’ve been lucky enough to have some great friends and family members allow me access to their precious bundles so that I can get some infant photography practice. 

Photographing infants is a whole new ball game.  Capturing their innocent cuteness is a pleasure.

First up, my friend Sarah (monkey baby shower Sarah) had her baby earlier this year.  I got some really cute shots of him at around 4 months.IMG_1414-copy_thumb2

Auntie Sabby got him this monkey hat…


Baby “E” has been such a blessing to Sarah and Jon and their families.  He’s such a good boy and he SO handsome!


I just wish we could all see each other more.  Hmpf. 

We also welcomed a new niece to our family this spring on my husband’s side. IMG_4885-bw

Baby “T” is perfect and has these eyes and lips to die for.


IMG_4839 copy bw

Angelina lips, no?

Finally, I got to shoot Baby “J”. He was only 5 weeks at the time and this is the littlest baby I’ve worked with so far. It comes with all sorts of challenges and was excellent practice. 


He also reminded me of Braden’s crazy nursing schedule.  Hungry little dude.



I’m a sucker BIG TIME for perfect little baby toes.  This was only one of about a hundred that I took. 


Ack!  I love those feet! 

So, there you have it…my first work with infants.  It’s a work in progress, but I still LOVE how the above shots turned out.  As with all aspects of photography, try, try and try again. 

I have to give a big thanks to my friends Sarah/Jon and Nina/Scrappy, as well as my brother and sister-in-law for letting me work with their perfect little homegrown nuggets.  Mwah!  I hope they enjoyed the resulting images as much as I enjoyed taking them.

Pin It
Related Posts with Thumbnails