elliot weekly: week 30

loving the outdoors at 30 weeks

What we've been up to:

Bath Time: Elliot is still loving her baths.  She's getting better at sitting up (in general) and it's fun to watch her sit up in the tub.  She doesn't quite get the whole sitting-up-while-not-falling-face-first-thing and still likes to lay down on her bath sling.

Sleeping Champ: Elliot is still sleeping through the night.  We are so thankful to have solid sleep in our lives!  Elliot usually goes down around 7:30pm and it leaves lots of time for me and Josh to spend time together.

Backpack Baby: Josh and I did a little hike at South Mountain and some yard work this week.  Elliot was both great help and great company.  We were given this baby pack by Elizabeth and John and we love it!  We hang a few toys on there and Elliot is set.  She loves the outdoors and this pack is the perfect combination of baby-containment/baby-entertainment center :)

Elliot directing te mulch placement

Josh and Elliot at South Mountain


elliot weekly: week 29

wearing socks at week 29....and kicking them off right away!
what we've been up to this week:

Sleeping Beauty: Elliot has been sleeping great this week.  We've even had a few nights where she slept until 7am!  We know that teething is probably right around the corner, so we are soaking up these good nights while we can.

Banquet:  We had our fundraising banquet for Young Life on Tuesday.  Elliot was a great gift-bag stuffer.  Consider yourself blessed if you got a little baby slobber on your baggie :)  Did you miss the banquet?  Check out a video clip here.

Just Me and Bottles:  Elliot is still nursing exclusively.  Breastfeeding has been such a gift and I'm glad that she's taken so well to it.  It was a huge prayer of mine during my pregnancy and I'm so thankful for the time with her.  Our pediatrician has advised us to start moving her towards baby food at 8 months.  The plan is to start her with rice cereal at 8 months and then transition to baby food after that.  It makes me kind of sad because I really enjoy the time with her and let's be honest here: its free!  Momma loves a deal y'all.


craft it: homemade trellis

I got Josh to craft with me! The key to getting the hubs involved: outdoor crafting. We bought and planted some Carolina Jasmine earlier this year. We used a trellis that we already owned, but knew that it wouldn't be large enough in the end. The Jasmine we bought is trailing; and trailing it was....it was starting to get a bit out of control. 

Here's a shot of the front of out house.
We planted the Jasmine in between the garage windows.
 See how sad it looks on the too-small-trellis?
The plan was to drill into the mortar and created a wire trellis running in-between the windows.  Josh picked up some garden wire at our local hardware store and that was the only cost for this project (about $5.) 

 Here's Josh using a masonry bit to drill into the mortar.  This is manly crafting for sure.

We ran the wire in a giant "X" pattern and then wove the Jasmine through.

Here are a few "after" shots:
And here are some shots at dusk:
Doesn't it look so much better?!


sitting up

I think we'd all be happy if we applauded each other the way we do babies.  Babies do hardly anything and we're cheering them on as if they've finished a marathon in record time.  Josh and I are totally  those parents.  We cheer when Elliot finishes a bottle, sleeps through the night or grins at us.  How different would the world be if you got a high-five or pat on the back for brushing your teeth, going to work or just going to bed?  I think we'd all walk around standing a little taller, feeling a bit more proud and secure....because after all, we'd put on clothes all by ourselves.

But until that day, I'll just keep cheering on my baby girl...because look at her learning how to sit up on her own:
Isn't that totally cheer-worthy?!


craft it: banner/mantle makeover

As the chiller weather has been approaching, I've been wearing more jackets and evening donning my slippers (only around the house, don't worry.)  It has made me think about this winter and warm fires and snuggles with the hubs.  Josh did a wonderful job installing this sliding doors on out over-the-fireplace-tv-nook, but the area is still feeling a little naked.  See what I mean?
 I bought several succulents (because I can't keep real plants alive) from Lowes a couple of glass vases from Anthropologie (not exactly cheap, but perfect for the space!)
But I still felt like the space needing something more.  And this is where Chelsea comes in.

My friend Chelsea is the queen of banners.  I try to copy a lot of what she does, and this is no exception.  Thanks Chelsea for still being my friend even though I copy you all.the.time.

Here's what you need for this little banner session:
1) banner paper (i used an old dictionary, because it was free)
2) sharpie
3) scissors
4) tape
5) remote control. i had to catch up on gossip girl.  yes, there is a 16 year old girl hiding inside this 28 year old mom. yikes.

If you have cute handwriting like Chelsea than you can go ahead and free-hand your letter.  I, on the other hand, printed off letters and then traced them using a lamp:
Josh was reading from 1 Corinthians the other day and it got us talking about we want to give thanks more often.  I thought putting it on the banner would put it front and center in the house:
I didn't know how to separate the words "give" and "thanks", so I just whipped up a coffee-filter and dictionary-page flower.  I just folded about 12 filters and 9 dictionary page circle cut-outs together and stuck a brad through them.  Easy peasy. 
One last look.  
Now doesn't that mantle look fresh?


wedded bliss

Elliot went to her fourth wedding to see our friends Baird and John get married.  We have known Baird for almost 10 years and Josh and I both wept happy tears as we watched her walk down the aisle.  She looked radiant and so very happy.  Here are a few moments from the ceremony and reception:
loved having a little bluegrass band off to the side!
rare thing: photo of just the two of us.    love.him.
young life girls entertaining elliot
cutest ring bearer ever!
happily married.  ready to party!
beautiful reception site!  can you see the barn? amazingness.
loved how they used cotton in their arrangements
how cute are elliot's baby Toms?!  thanks lampley family!


elliot weekly: week 28

so happy at 28 weeks
What we've been up to this week:

Outdoor Lady: Elliot has really been loving her outdoor time this week.  We had a few rainy spells, but other than that we've been spending a lot of time outside at work and home.  I'm fortunate to have a yard at work where we can sneak out for play breaks.  We have to keep an eye out for the rogue chicken or two (I always take a broom outside with me for protection---makes me feel like I'm on Little House on the Prairie).  Elliot loves looking at everything, feeling the breeze, pulling up all the grass around here and promptly trying to eat it.

Raspberry Central: Elliot is all about blowing raspberries these days.  She'll take a huge breath and just blow/dribble away.  Her face turns so red that I feel like she might pass out or something!  I have to say "Breath Elliot!"  The distraction makes her stop; she'll look up at me and laugh---its so sweet.  We caught a clip on our friend's video camera---we hope to share it soon!

Ears: Elliot has found her ears!  She been "playing" with her ears, flicking the cartilage back and forth.  At first I was nervous that she might be pulling on her ears and was worried about an ear infection (rumor has it that I had a ton of those as a baby). But, she is often smiling when she's doing it, so I'm not too worried.  She's also discovered my ears.  I haven't been wearing dangly earring for a while, fearing that she'd pull them out with her incredible baby strength (sidenote: babies are seriously strong, can I get an "Amen!" on that??)  But even on the days were I'm wearing small post earrings Elliot just wants to flick/tug/poke my upper cartilage.  We may have a future ENT doctor on our hands.

Growing Like a Weed: Elliot had a little growth spurt this week.  Over a span of three days she took a full extra feeding, was a little more fussy and slept a little more poorly.  We are entirely too spoiled with our sweet girl, because when we have something as totally normal as a growth spurt I totally freak out like "why is she wanting so much milk?  why did she wake up at 1am? why is she fussy?  is she getting teeth?"

Toothless Wonder:  Elliot is officially 6.5 months old with no teeth in sight.  She keeps her fingers in her mouth a lot these days, but I'm pretty sure she's just playing with her tongue (also a recent discovery!)  I'm not rushing her into teething, but every time she's fussy I think "oh! maybe she's teething??"


real life tom and jerry

I went over to my friend Marywinn's house a couple of days ago.  Her daughter (my friend Cora) is coming into town this weekend and she wanted to freshen up Cora's room.  Marywinn's house is the coolest; its a two story yellow-with-white-and-green-trim Victorian house.  They've added a few modern luxuries (amazing on-suite master bath with heated floors and towel warmer, yowsa!) but the house still has so many fun and eclectic original pieces.  I love that every room has a coal burning fireplace, the stained glass and that Cora's room has a secret little play-room tucked away.  Marywinn has done a fabulous job of displaying the old (she keeps her mom's vintage jewelry in a shadow box that has a hinged door so she can still use the jewelry!) while enjoying the new (stainless steel range and granite counter tops in the kitchen.)

Marywinn's children are all grown and married, so she doesn't spend a ton of time upstairs.  When she went to go look in Cora's room, check out what was waiting just under Cora's vanity:
Its a real mouse hole!  While it might be a little eeeek-inducing, I thought it was funny.  I mean, doesn't it look just like a cartoon mouse hole??
I just couldn't help but giggle.  I told Marywinn not to worry, that it was just where Jaq and Gus lived (remember the mice from Cinderella?!)  She was worried that it was a rat, but I assured her that it was certainly a sweet, song-singing, dress-making, princess-coaching cartoon mouse that lived there.  Or that it was a wiley, prank-causing, teeny mouse that would terrorize her dog.  Either way, the mouse is definitely a cartoon...and that's my professional opinion.


craft it: monogram it!

I recently received these vintage kitchen towels from my friend Marywinn and this dress for Elliot from my mom.  They were both super cute....but definitely needed a little extra sass. 

I wasn't quite sure what to do to them.  applique? screen print? my crafty brain was stumped!  So I took them uptown and had our local monogramming lady work her magic!

I like that the monogramming lady used a number on the dish towels.  I told her that I wanted something a little different than the normal "married couple monogram" look.  I also think she did a great job on Elliot's dress!  I wanted a little less "girly" monogram and Chelsea suggested getting it done in gray and I loved the idea--of course Chelsea would have the best eye for that, have you checked out her blog??  She's styled my entire closet for me (it was like a what-not-to-wear marathon) and she always has the most  unique ideas.

So a sneaky little crafty lesson....when in doubt, have someone else do the planning and the doing of a craft.  I guess I just "managed" this craft.  Oh well, that's the life of a crafting mama...sometime you feel the urge to craft but have neither the time nor the ideas.  Hahahaha. 


cook it: ginormous biscuits

 Josh and I have been cooking at home more lately.  I'm not sure if its the cooler temperatures, night falling a little earlier or just spending more time at home---but I love it!  I love bumping into him while we cook, talking over our day and making something together.  We've been extra inspired by our Tupelo Honey cookbook lately.  We were actually looking for a dinner recipe (tomato pie, definitely will share soon!) when we came across their famous biscuit recipe. Josh made them on Sunday morning.  I'm not sure if it was using bread flour or the insane amount of butter, but these babies were delish!  Make some coffee and get out some blackberry preserves, these biscuits are yummmmm!

Tupelo Honey's Ginormous Biscuits
Makes 6 Biscuits 

2 cups bread flour 
1 tablespoon baking powder 
¼ teaspoon baking soda 
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 teaspoon plus ½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup unsalted butter, frozen 
½ cup buttermilk 
1 tablespoon butter, melted 

1) Preheat the oven to 450F. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sour cream, and ½ teaspoon of the salt in a large bowl. 
2) With a cheese grater, grate the frozen butter using the largest holes; quickly cut the butter into the flour mixture with a pastry cutter or fork until the mixture resembles coarse meal. 
3) Add the buttermilk to the flour mixture and stir just until combined. Do not overmix. 
4) On a floured surface, turn out the dough and roll out to a 1-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch biscuit cutter, cut the biscuits and place on a rimmed sheet pan. 
5) Cook on the top rack of the oven for about 20 minutes, or until light brown, and remove from the oven. 6) Brush the melted butter on top of each biscuit and return to the oven for about 5 minutes longer, or until the biscuits are golden brown.


craft it: jewelry display

I have some super fun pieces of jewelry.  Some were gifts from my sweet sisters and friends.  Some were impulsively purchased while others caught my eye for a while before I indulged.  But the results were always the same: a big ole dusty mess on top of my dresser:

The site is anything but inspiring folks.  I ended up just wearing my wedding bands and the same necklace every day.  I love my wedding bands and the silver everyday necklace, but I wanted my jewelry to speak to my fun personality....because all my wear-the-same-darn-thing-every-stinking-day look was saying about me was that I was boring.  And I'm not.  Trust me.  I really quite fun.  Really!

Anyways, back to the issue at hand.  I scoured Pinterest for ideas but couldn't find any that were really "me."  I felt like the whole frame-backed-with-chicken-wire was great, but a little over done.  And, as you can see in the picture above, I was trying the whole jewelry-tree idea----but was really going to need a jewelry-forest to get the problem fixed.

In walked inspiration:  a $1 bin of old cabinet inlays at a yard sale!
I had some off-white paint in the garage.  I wasn't even sure if the paint would be good...but I figured that the cabinet inlays were only $1, so I wasn't really ready to splurge on new paint.
The inlays cleaned up pretty good!  After arranging the panels in the order I thought I'd hang them on the wall, I added hangers to the back
 Next I used a little rub-n-buff to add a little interest to the panels
 You always need an assistant while crafting.  How cute is mine?!?!
 Yikes.  Its looks like I got a little to interested in my assistant and didn't quite see the mess I was making!  Word to the wise---rub-n-buff dries QUICK! 
 Fortunately, it covers pretty well too!  Here's a look at the edges
 Next up: drilling pilot holes for my hooks.  I covered the area with painters tape to reduce wood splitage and paint chipage.  Yep, made up two words right there.  You can do that with a blog.
 Now I had to find a spot to hang them up!  This is the wall our bed faces.  The door on the left is the door to the bathroom and the door on the right is the door to the hallway (where our media wall is!)  I chose to hang the jewelry display to the left of the bathroom door.  Why?  Because we leave that door open a lot and it would hide the display most of the time.  Hey, I married a man who for some reason doesn't want to see my jewelry all the time.  what?!?
couldn't quite get josh or elliot out of the shot. oh well!
 But, that sweet jewelry-display-hating man did actually help me measure and hang the display.  Bless him.
 I wanted to do as little damage to the wall as possible.  These furniture pads should help eliminate scratches.  The display will "rock" a little bit when taking bigger pieces of jewelry off.
 Oh.  Be still my heart.
 So fresh and so clean.  Just waiting to be filled with so much awesomeness.
Oh, my.  My name is Blair.  So nice to meet you.  You look fabulous.
 I want to get my ears pierces 204982 more times so I can wear all of you at once!
 Even after 68 hooks, I still ran out of room for my headbands and stud earrings.  Oh well.  That's a little better!
I will say that my jewelry organization has already helped my accessorizing immensely.  Its also caused more jewelry-buying though.  Eek.  Good thing I have a few more panels left over---might need to add one or two more!
Images by Freepik