Sunday, October 31, 2010

Birthday & Halloween Bash!

What a weekend!! First of all, yesterday was my 23rd birthday, woohoo!! Friday night my parents babysat while Justin and I went to Outback Steakhouse and to the movies. We got to use gift cards (for both) that Justin had gotten for his birthday last month. It was fun to have a date night!

On my actual birthday, we started the day with Justin making delicious omeletes. I then got to shower and get ready in peace while he played with Carrie. Amazing how much faster I can get ready when she's not wanting to try out all my makeup, brush etc. :)

We went "into town" (to Chandler) and first, got my birthday present from me. We went to Lowes and picked out paint to do our Master bedroom! I got some fabric at a clearance sale last week to make us a new bedspread. So although it be a process over the next several weeks, we'll get our bedroom decorated finally!

Justin was very good about keeping his present to me a surprise. We went to the Arizona Mills Mall and went to Bath and Body Works. I got to choose some bubble bath and lotion. He also wanted to get me a bath pillow (the little inflatable kind to put behind your back in the tub). I've been saying I want one for quite a while. So far we've had a hard time finding one, but I'm excited to have it whenever we actually find one.

On the way to the mall Carrie enjoyed a purple sucker and got quite a sticky face!

We ate lunch at Subway (my pick) at the mall. Carrie was amazingly well behaved all day even though it was past naptime. After all the day's excitement though, she zonked in the car on the way home.

She got to "help" make cupcakes for the ward party later that night, and had a great time licking the beaters!

Tah-dah! My witch's cauldron cupcakes. Chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter, gummy worm, and sprinkles "brew" spilling out. They were for a dessert contest at the party, but we didn't win. Oh well, they were still yummy!

Our cute little angel. Oh yeah, and she was dressed up as an angel too :)

Coloring at the ward carnival (Because ward Halloween parties are usually the day before, I always joke that the ward throws me a birthday party every year!)

An attempt at a view of the back. The angel costume came with cheapy ultra-glittery butterfly wings instead of angel wings, so I made some. By this point in the evening they'd gotten a little crunched, but you get the idea. (I love her pigtails too!)

And who else could be the parents of an angel, but a Priest and a Nun?.... A pregnant Nun, that is.... (hahaha, we're so funny)

Carrie's friend Jake was dressed as a cop. He's handcuffing Justin (the Priest) for getting me (the Nun) pregnant ;)

I bailed him out though and instead of a mugshot, we got a super cute family picture!

The Paynes. Convicts and their Cop son. What makes this even funnier is Cameron (the dad) is a cop in real life. :)

Jake and Carrie! What good friends!

All ready to go trick-or-treating in the cultural hall.

We made a few friends along the way. The most interesting? A little girl just Carrie's size dressed as a devil! They just stood there and stared at each other, it was funny!

Some other great costumes in the ward were:

The old man from Disney Pixar's "UP"

Bishop Moss, the clown

Woody, Bo Peep, Jessie and Buzz (aka the Carpenters)

The Black Eyed P's (aka the Picketts)

Justin trying to see if he could get out of the handcuffs. He started with his hands behind his back, finally got them underneath him and pulled his legs through. He ended up being able to get his hands in front of him, but not out of the cuffs. It was very entertaining to watch him try though!

Carrie plopped down in the middle of the cultural hall and dumped out her pumpkin to inspect her treats

We didn't get to bed until about 9:30 (which at least for Carrie, is extremely late!)

This morning, we started celebrating Halloween with Jack-o-lantern pancakes. I wished I'd had some pumpkin pie filling or something, but we made it work. I made apple cinnamon spice pancakes, food coloring to make them orange, and a chocolate chip face. (Easy to make: add about 1/2 cup applesauce, a few shakes of cinnamon and a few shakes of allspice to the batter. Yummy!)

We also needed a candy corn dress photo shoot. Isn't it amazing how so much cuteness can be packed into one tiny girl?!
While Justin was snapping pictures, Carrie was copying however I was standing. So I started to do some silly things. It worked, she copied me!

Tonight we sat out on our driveway with the Paynes (I love Halloween in Arizona!) and handed out candy to the very very few trick-or-treaters we had. We have TONS of candy left over, but all in all, it was a great weekend! Here's hoping everyone else had a fun, safe Halloween!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Half a Decade Ago....

I can't believe it's already been 5 years since we met! Here's our fun story about back then!

October 26, 2005, BYU-Idaho

Justin: 22 year old, returned missionary, first semester back at school since returning from his mission.

Rebecca: 17 year old, first semester Freshman, declared major - Mechanical Engineering

We met on Facebook.... Seriously....

Facebook was pretty new back then and we were both still building our "friend base". We ended up with a mutual friend (that neither one of us really even knows). Justin decided one day to look through this person's friends to see how he might know her.

It was love at first [picture] sight. Justin saw my picture in her list of friends, thought I was cute and "poked" me. He then sent a message that said,

"hey there. well what can i say? your picture definitely got my attention! very nice! hope to get to know you a lot more!"

Looking back now, it was COMPLETELY random and should have been a little creepy since I had no idea who he was but.... things worked out I guess. :)

We sent messages back and forth through the day on Facebook and then Instant Messaging. We discovered we only lived a block away from each other and decided to meet. That evening, we had dinner at McDonalds and went to an inter-mural basketball game on campus. What an exciting first date huh?!

Justin says after the second day he thought to himself, "I have to make this girl like me." We were basically inseparable from then on. A few days later was my 18th birthday and we "officially" started dating.

A little less than a month later, Justin came with me to my Grandma's house for the week of Thanksgiving break because "home" was too far for both of us. Well, that week, we ended up getting engaged!! Quick, I know, but it's the best thing that's ever happened to us!

Fast forward five years later; We've been married for 4 1/2 years, we have a mortgage, a minivan, Justin works a desk job, I'm a stay at home mom to our adorable 21 month old little girl Carrie, and we'll soon be adding baby boy Brigham to our family! My, how time flies when you're having fun with your best friend!!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

All in a Day's Work

Carrie has always loved to play in the DVD cabinet, but the last few days, she's been much more orderly about it. She used to just yank all the movies off the shelf and throw them in a heap on the floor. Recently, she's been building towers instead. Really really tall towers. My favorite thing is usually after about 5 or 10 minutes she starts singing "clean up, clean up" and putting them away (without any prompting from me!)

She loves to pack up her baby stroller with toys and "go to work". Purse, sunglasses, water, cell phone etc... She'll get everything loaded up, turn to us and say, "Bye! See'ya!" and walk away!

Last week we bought a security door for the back. As the weather's been getting nicer, I've been wishing I could keep the door open without getting a house full of bugs. Solution found!

We convinced our friend Cameron to come help Justin put it up.

Unfortunately, after about half an hour of drills and muscles, nothing was happening. They couldn't get the one-way screws to go in further than about 1/2 an inch....

We gave up and decided just to call Lowes the next day and spend the money to have someone come professionally install it.

Lucky for us though, when Justin finally read through all the instructions, we discovered that one-way screws require a special drill bit attachment. We didn't have to call Lowes after all. Instead, Justin ran to Ace, picked up the bit and the next day....

After a LOT of hard work... Tah-dah!! Now I can leave the back door open and enjoy the awesome 75 degree breeze blowing into my kitchen!!
It's been amazing! We haven't turned on the A/C all week!!

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Carrie Candy Corn Dress

Alright. For those of you who have been asking... a DRESS TUTORIAL! I most likely won't ever do this again because it took twice as long to write everything down and try to have it make sense for other people to read! I also don't ever use patterns so no two things I make are alike. I've once used a friend's kid's diaper as a size reference since I was sewing after Carrie was already in bed.... I'm very much a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants sewer.

Do you all remember the painter guy with the afro who you used to watch on TV? Didn't you always swear that somewhere in the middle he made an irreversible mistake that completely ruined the picture? But somehow it turned out looking nice in the end?...

This totally describes almost all of my sewing projects. I make it up as I go, and usually end up having to tweak and re-tweak things after-the-fact so they look or fit better. Hence, tutorials are difficult for me to write.

**My apologies in advance to those who may end up confused by this tutorial. It's my first (and probably only) try at doing one. Good luck!

This is the CARRIE CANDY CORN DRESS, making an appearance just in time for Halloween (which happens to be on a Sunday this year, so she needed something festive to wear to church)

1. Find a dress that already fits "your girl". Use this as a pattern for length, collar, and arm holes when cutting your fabric.

The white of a candy corn is the smallest tip part, hence it is the bodice of this dress. The orange takes up most of the middle and the very edge is yellow. I eyeballed the white-to-orange-to-yellow ratio to match the length of the dress I was using as a pattern.

If you really wanted to, you could use plain colors. I thought a little bit of pattern was more fun.

2. When cutting pieces, make sure you allow about 1/2 inch extra on each piece for seam and also a little more extra length. By the time you put it all together, the ruffle makes the dress appear shorter than you thought (I learned this the hard way)

The bodice (white) should be a normal fit, matching your "pattern dress" perfectly. You will need (4) of them. *Front and back with full lining*

The orange should be a long wide rectangle measuring 3 times the width of the bodice.

The yellow should be 3 times the width of the orange.

An example of what your pieces might look like right after you cut them out. (My orange and yellow pieces are folded in half in this pic so everything would fit easier. They are actually much wider than they look)

3. Stitch two bodice pieces together (ie; front to lining)

Do NOT stitch the bodice bottom. This will allow you a place to flip it right-side-out in a minute.

Also, to reduce shoulder bulk later, do NOT stitch the shoulder tops together either.

Sides, armholes and collar only :)

Repeat with remaining two bodice pieces (ie; back and lining)

4. Flip both pieces right side out and sew front and back together along sides and shoulder tops.

Flip so seams are on the inside, and topstitch around arm holes and collar.

5. Cut a small rectangle (white) about 2/3 the length of the bodice and about 2 inches wide.

6. Do a quick-hem to one of the short sides of the rectangle. Pin the small rectangle to the back of the bodice, right sides together.

7. Cut down the center about 2 inches. You will be cutting through the small rectangle and both layers of the back piece.

8. Pin a small loop of skinny elastic/ribbon/rope between back and small rectangle.

9. Sew a straight stitch on both sides of the newly cut "slit"
10. Flip the small rectangle piece through the slit so it's now on the inside of the bodice.

Topstitch around slit. This will secure the small rectangle so it stays on the inside.

Now, the point of the last several steps.... Tah-dah! A beautiful, finished button hole closure in the back

The bodice is done, pat yourself on the back. At this point you might also want to allow yourself a small reward. A cookie or something.

Yummy :) Now back to business!

11. Run a gathering stitch along one looooong side of the orange piece.

12. Gather until the width matches the width of the bodice bottom (plus 1/2 inch for seam)

13. Stitch right sides of orange together to make a "ring"

14. Pin right sides of bodice and orange together and stitch.

15. Flip right-side-out. Fold seam so it's laying toward bodice and topstitch. (This helps the ruffle seam lay flatter)

***Repeat steps 11-15 with yellow-to-orange***

Note: My yellow piece actually took 4 separate strips of fabric to make it the right (very long) length. If your pieces are like this too, sew them all to each other FIRST. You should be running a gather stitch along one very very long piece of fabric, not several separate strips

16. Double fold and hem bottom of dress.

17. Iron the whole dress.

*Ruffles are a little tricky to iron. Use very very short strokes, moving the fabric as you go. You want to try to avoid actually ironing creases into the ruffle. Basically, life is easier without ironing, but it sure makes everything look prettier!
18. Hand sew button on back for closure.

19. Hand sew bow, button, or something else small and decorative on bodice top

20. CONGRATS! You're all done! Grab your little cutie and make her try on this dang cute halloween dress!! (I'm pretty sure another cookie is justified at this point!)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Daddy-Daughter Bonding

It's October, and that means.... Baseball playoff season! We've been watching a LOT of baseball around here. Over the past few years I've come to accept that just because "your team" isn't in the playoffs doesn't mean you can't watch. In fact, I've come to enjoy watching baseball very much, and I'm extremely impressed with myself over all the teams, players, trivia facts etc. I've picked up on.

Carrie is getting a much earlier start on her love of baseball than I did. Justin will ask Carrie, "Do you want to come sit with Daddy and watch baseball?"

Her response is almost always a vigorous, "YEAH!!!!!", as she runs over to climb on the couch and starts chanting, "Bisba, bisba!"

So the other day I snagged a cute pic of them lounging together watching the Yankees/Rangers.

I asked her to give Daddy a hug,

and then a kiss.
So cute. :) I sure love these two!!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Mostly Pictures

A post of pictures... Just because :)

Posing on the stairs at bedtime. What a cutie!

Yesterday we walked to the park with some friends. The kids rode in our new wagon while the moms took turns pulling. This park is not just right around the corner, it took us about 20 minutes to get there, so I felt more than justified not doing anything else even remotely workout related for the rest of the day. :)

Running around the playground looking like a little ray of sunshine in a "new" garage sale dress.

Later in the afternoon, she went to the pantry, pulled out a cup of applesauce and begged "Apple? Apple?", so I set her in her booster with a little spoon. It usually gets a tiny messy, but whatever, she's a toddler. I figure I'll wipe her down when she's done. Well.... I went into the other room for a few minutes and came back to find this.

Applesauce fingerpainting! The picture doesn't show how much was in her lap too. I'm pretty sure she didn't actually eat a single bite. At least she had fun right?

And tah-dah... 28 weeks. I figured I needed to post a "real" belly picture after the picture last week where the apron I had on made me look so huge I looked like I was about ready to deliver!
I just realized I need to take more pictures with Justin in them. I'll get on that today when he gets home from work!