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Thursday, March 27, 2014

my recipe box

When I got married, my mom gave me an awesome gift - a collection of family recipes! Every recipe card was written by hand from each of the ladies that contributed. A few years ago when my grandmother passed away, I fully realized how special it was to have some of her favorite recipes written out just for me. 

For the last few years, I've struggled to find a way to mesh my own recipes with these special ones. I wanted one cohesive way to store all of my recipes together.
 I tried everything from a cluttered mess {not the solution} to an organized binder. And none of it seemed just right.

Then I finally found inspiration in a few great looking recipe boxes that were right up my alley. Soon the search was on for the perfect box. In the end, I purchased this white, vintage tin on Ebay.

I love it!

And since this tin is square, I also got to create my own custom recipe cards.

Here's what I came up with...

I also created a few dividers to help separate the various items.

There's even a little spot up front to store those lovely handwritten cards that I adore so much.

My sweet little recipe tin has its own spot on the bookshelf in my breakfast nook, right around the bend from the kitchen.

I looked into some other recipe boxes today to see what else was out there. Here's a few lovely ones that I saw:

via / via / via / via

And what about you?
How do you store your recipes?

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

a second birthday party {Jake turns two!}

We had an absolute blast celebrating Jake's second birthday this weekend!

I may or may not have stressed all week long about the dismal weather forecast. And up until the literal last minute, I really wasn't sure if the weather would hold out for our outside party. But at 2pm, the sun came out, the skies were blue and we had a perfect party day! 70 and sunny! Clearly God knew what He was doing and I should just mind my own business.

If you saw the sweet invitations already, you know that we decided on a train themed party. 
{as if we had a choice with this train obsessed little man}

Since all of the kiddos were 3 and under, I decided to have a variety of stations all around the backyard so they could run and play at their own leisure.

This was a station where the kids could ride a small Thomas the Train around the tracks. Great for anyone 3 and under because there's no steering. Even some babies got in the on the action..

And as you can see, Jake and his buddy Ben even broke all safety rules for a piggy back ride on Thomas.

You can grab yours here {the railroad sign is a separate item}. Mine was purchased for $50 at a local bargain shop, an awesome deal since Jake is crazy about this thing.

I purchased some little wooden trains at Hobby Lobby and set out a table with brushes, smocks and washable paint. Both the kids and adults had fun here!

Isn't it a kids' party law that there must be a bouncy house?

Since Jake loves to jump in them, we had the full intentions of renting a small bouncy house for his party. So imagine my excitement when I stumbled upon this small Little Tikes house for $25 at a local kid's consignment sale two weeks ago! $25! I couldn't believe it!

This was more of a last minute idea that I had. A photo booth just seemed so neat for a picture spot! We made this from a 4' x 8' sheet of plywood. I drew all of the shapes and JB cut everything out with a jig saw. Then a little spray paint and boom, photo booth.
{It's staked into the ground behind the wheels.}

What is a train party without a pretty epic amount of trains and tracks for the kids to play on?
We got out all of Jake's Thomas the Train tracks and engines {a massively scary amount} and set up a huge play area on a 10' x 12' tarp. Probably the most popular station!

I think that all of the kids and parents had a pretty fun time. Everyone got along marvelously and seemed to really enjoy each station. Several even cried when they had to leave, which I take as a sign of a good party, haha!

And this momma had a fun time putting it together.
Here are a few of the decorative details...

We also had some cute grab bags for the kids.
The personalized bags held conductor hats, bandanas, and a train whistle.

I searched high and low to find some muslin bags locally, and by the time I realized that I was going to have to order online, it was too late. So I ended up sewing these drawstring bags myself using this tutorial. And since the muslin is so thin, I just placed a picture of the train and name behind the fabric and was able to trace the design on top. A super quick and easy craft that made for a great add on.

All in all, it was a perfect, beautiful, crazy fun day! Exactly the type of great time with family and friends that I wanted Jake to have for his second birthday. He was overly spoiled with presents and love, and I can't help but feel like our whole family is surrounded by some of the best folks on the planet.

So little man, I hope your special day was fabulous! Here's another bright, beautiful year with you!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

happy birthday jake!

I am in complete denial that this precious little man is two years old today.

How? How??

It seems like just yesterday that a 7lb, 3oz little bundle was born.

And already, so grown up. 
Today will be beautiful and I'm so excited to continue celebrating through the weekend.

This little bug is a total joy. He's such a smart, brave and adventurous boy. I so love to watch him learn and explore with every passing day.

His smile is infectious and his constant curiosity continues to blow me away.

Happy Birthday to my beautiful little Jake! We love you more that we could ever express and we are so proud that God trusted us to be your parents!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

jake's second birthday {the invites}

It's finally here! Party week!

I'm up to my eyeballs in items for our shindig this weekend but I'm super excited to share the first party piece with you - the invitiations!

I created these three piece invitations at home with my own printer. 

 - The engines and cars were printed on a brown canvas card stock
 - The white silhouette and two car details were printed on plain white card stock. 
 - I used a 1" punch to create the round wheels from a navy card stock. 
 - Everything was attached together using the small scrapbook mounting squares


I used a hole punch on each car piece and white ribbon to tie the cars together...

Here are some close ups....

{Had to edit the person stuff out for the interwebz, but my address and the RSVP number is listed at the bottom there.}

And these little dears folded right up into a blue 5x7 envelope for mailing!

Jake loved watching me make these. I think he's finally understanding that its his own train party that we're getting prepped for!

So excited!!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

currently {march}


The John Green novel is for my book club this month. I've heard so much about this book and I can't wait to get into it! The Wally Lamb novel was strongly suggested to me from a friend. It sounds like a really interesting story - a set of twins, one with schizophrenia and one without.

I've mainly been listening to these two lately {a bit of a variety, eh?}. Rend Collective reminds me of a Christian version of Mumford and Sons. And Imagine Dragons are just fun!

This precious kiddo's second birthday party extravaganza! 

I'm equal parts excited and in complete denial. How is it already time for another birthday?! But umm, yay, because I love this party planning biz! 
Vintage train party for us this year {try to contain your shock}. And I'm having so much fun prepping games and decorations and other general birthday shenanigans. T-minus two weeks until his birthday!

This blog I hope! I've been reworking several of the pages and I think its looking a lot simpler. My favorite right now is Jake's page. You can check out everything from my pregnant "baby bumps" updates to the Toddler Art Tuesday posts all in one organized place!

Look for this logo on the right sidebar and then click on whatever you'd like to read:


Online yard sales. 

Has this been a thing for everyone? I've recently gotten into it! It's especially awesome right now as we're remodeling some rooms. I can quickly sell what I don't need on the local Facebook groups {and even clean out a few closets} and people will come haul it off. Way simpler than having an actual yard sale. 
Also, I can grab some awesome deals for myself this way!

Have you guys found an awesome local deal lately??

So many things!
 - The fact that I planted my first spring flowers yesterday.
 - My new built-ins that my handsome hubby made for me.
 - Season two of House of Cards {am I right?! so good!}.
 - Watercolors. So in right now!
 - The goodies from my trip to the downtown Homewood, Alabama shops last weekend.
 - Grabbing items for Jake's Easter basket.
 - Creative Market. I'm obsessed.
 - My ideas for some new pallet projects.
 - Boxwoods. Everything boxwoods.

Spring!! It's happening soon! We've had just a few lovely days of sunshine and are itching to get outside more often. Jake is crazy about playing in the yard and at the park. I can't wait to be able to get outside every day!

How is your March shaping up?!