Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Please Pray

Sorry for the lack of posts lately.  My heart has been and is very heavy for our friends, Pat and Sarah Fries (pronounced "freeze" with an s instead of a z).  They were in our small group for about 4 years and Pat was our leader.  They have two beautiful children, Lynlee (4) and Owen (2).  Sarah was diagnosed with a brain tumor at the beginning of February.  Since then they have made several trips to M.D. Anderson in Houston and she has had surgery to remove all that they could.  Thankfully they got all but 5%.  This past weekend they learned it is a Grade III Anaplastic Astrocytoma.  She will begin a 6 week radiation regiment in Houston in a few weeks and chemo looks like a possibility too.  Will you join me in praying for this family?  We know our God is much bigger than a diagnosis and is the ultimate Healer. Pat has been updating their blog HERE if you want to follow along. 



Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Groopdealz

I had never heard of groopdealz.com until the other day but it is a great site!  They have a special of the day which is always a great deal.  Today, our favorite twins in blogland are featured!  Today ONLY you can get Twice As Nice Lettering's "Welcome" vinyl for only $7.00!  That is half off. These look so great on a front door.  Click HERE to get this deal.  Congratulations Fern and Fran on your feature!   




Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Friday, March 25, 2011

Like Having A Puppy

When I mentioned to my Mom what Westin's favorite activity is, she said it was like having a puppy.  I couldn't agree more!




He loves shredding toilet paper, paper towels, wipes or even cotton balls. My bathroom looks like this every morning because it is what occupies him long enough for me to get ready.  Surprisingly he doesn't put any of it in his mouth so I just let him have at it!

P.S.  Becky is so sweet to feature another one of my favorite projects today on Liberate Creativity.  This is probably one of my favorite projects I have ever done and I am still happy with the results even though it has been over 2 years! (It is rare for something to stay up for over 2 years around here.)  :)  Thank you, Becky!  Click HERE to see it.    


Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Thursday, March 24, 2011

BuildASign.com

When I was asked by Melissa at BuildASign.com if I would be interested in trying out a banner, I said, "yes ma'am!"  When I went to their site I was blown away at all the options!  The banners can all be customized for whatever you need.  And they are HUGE!  This one is 3 feet by 6 feet.  They are also made out of durable vinyl.  I chose a birthday banner for Westin.

 You can even add a picture if you want to.  The colors are so vibrant and the picture is so clear.  I thought it would be neat to have a birthday banner with a picture of Westin with his first birthday cake.  We can pull it out every year to always be reminded of when he ate his first cake.  :)

Westin thought it was so funny that his picture was on there!  He kept patting his face. 

When I told him that we were going to hang this up at his 13th birthday to embarrass him in front of all his friends he thought that was hi-larious

There might be some years where he is embarrassed to see this but how sweet will it be to pull this out when he turns 18 or 21?  (sniff! sniff!)

I would definitely recommend BuildASign.com and I will definitely be ordering another banner when we have another baby!  :) Their shipping was SO fast and they stand behind their products. Thank you very much, Melissa!  You were great to work with and I appreciate the opportunity. 



Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Happy Spring!

Here is another post, list style.

1.  I have hardly opened my computer since last Thursday!  We have been ejoying this beautiful weather with almost daily trips to the park.  We have a city park in our neighborhood and I don't think anyone knows about it.  It is huge, brand new and almost always empty. 

2.  We have been working in our flower beds too.  We planted a forsythia bush, tons of gladiolus bulbs and I'm waiting until after the last frost to plant another peony.  Everything is starting to bud and I'm so excited!  My hydrangeas have just started shooting up some greenery from the ground.  I'm always most excited about those.

3.  I'm not sure why, but Westin has never pulled up to standing in his crib until last Friday.  It was before his nap but I still ran in there with the camera to document this special occasion.  ;)  I think he was most excited that I rescued him from his afternoon nap.



4.  Westin had Macaroni and Cheese for the first time the other day and I think he is a fan!
Touchdown!
5.  Another reason I haven't opened my computer lately is because I've been reading.  Liz Curtis Higgs is one of my favorite authors and her new book just came out.  It is the sequal to her previous book and they are set in Scotland in the 1700's.  It is loosly based on the story of Ruth, Naomi and Boaz.  They were really good!  However my FAVORITE series of hers (and maybe my all time favorite books) was her series based on the story in Genesis about Isaac, Rebecca, Jacob and Esau.  I've read the whole series at least 3 times and it never fails that I start thinking in a Scottish accent.  ;)

6.  Westin has an obsession with balloons!  He leaves every store throwing the biggest fit because he sees all the balloons at the check out and doesn't get one.  It is about to drive me crazy because balloons are everywhere!  So far he has totally embarrassed me at Walmart, the Dollar Tree and Harps.  Haha

7.  He just woke up from his morning nap so I better go!  I think we are going to transition him to one nap and day and I can't wait!    




Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle

Thursday, March 17, 2011

.50 Chalkboard and Andrew's Birthday

This chalkboard would be more impressive if I hadn't lost my before picture.  Oh well....picture a brown wooden frame and a picture that had no glass and was definitely from the 60's.  I just painted right over the picture with the chalkboard paint and painted the frame white.  It had a green price tag on it at the thrift store so I got it for .50 that day.  I used it at Westin's birthday party:

And we used it last night when we celebrated Andrew's birthday at Fam Night. 

I did not need another chalkboard (but who can pass up a large picture from .50?!?!) so I gave it to Katie.  If anything, maybe Zach can practice his letters.  ;)

 While we were singing "Happy Birthday" to Andy, Zach was lovin' on Westin.  Zach really does have a thing for putting his hands on kid's heads! It is sooo funny!

Now that we have 4 kiddos at Fam Night, getting a good picture (or any picture at all!) is a huge deal. 

TAKE 1: (Hello Joseph??? Over here!)


TAKE 2: (Zach thought we might like a ball thrown into the picture.)


TAKE 3: (Yay!  Everyone is looking!)

By the way, did y'all see Asa (in the blue)?  He is 4.5 months old and doing great!  Elizabeth has been updating her blog more frequently if you would like to read about him HERE.  He was born in October at 31 weeks.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ANDREW!!!
We had fun celebrating with you last night!


Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Liberate Creativity

Have you been by Liberate Creativity?  Becky has such a fun blog!  She wants to help people use their creativity and try to do something crafty every day. She was kind enough to feature little ole me today!  Check out the post HERE.  Thank you, Becky!

I couldn't leave a post without a picture!  Nicole sent me a preview of Westin's one year pictures.  I can't wait to see the rest!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Thrift Store Lamp

Thank you all for your sweet words on Westin's party!  I'm still trying to catch up on my emails.  :)  It was such a fun day for us.  We took his one year pictures Saturday so I cannot wait to get those back.  I'll be sure to share a few!

Also...an update on the cleaning supplies.... thank you all for your suggestions! I love the Magic Eraser Power Scrubber (or whatever it is called-the one for bathrooms).  I don't think I even had to use any muscle at all while I was cleaning.  That is what I like!  hahaha The soap scum just wiped right off.  It was great!  I also tried the Bar Keeper's Friend on my sink.  I liked it too but it left it kind of dull.  Do y'all shine your sink with something else after using the BKF?

Now, on to the lamp.  I wanted to update my living room lamps but our budget for that is $0.  That doesn't stop me.  :) I stopped in a local (huge) thrift store a couple of weeks ago and found a brass lamp.  It had a green tag on it which meant that day it was fifty cents!  I can swing that.  Can you believe I LOST my before picture?!  I'm so sad!  Just picture a shiny brass lamp.  After a coat of spray primer and heirloom white, I had a new lamp.

It didn't have a shade but I'm using one off a floor lamp that we aren't using anymore.  I'm keeping my eye out at the thrift store for a shade and another lamp to update our end table lamp.  I just love how it turned out!

I had the shade and the paint so the whole project was only .50!  I also bought a huge picture and a big frame for .50 too so my grand total that day was $1.00.  (And the total sad fact is that I didn't even have a dollar in my wallet and had to use my bank card.  Ha! I just do not carry cash.) You can probably guess what I did with that picture.....chalkboard anyone?  I'll show you soon!

Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Friday, March 11, 2011

Party Time!

Westin is one LOVED little boy!  He had over 30 family members and friends come and celebrate his birthday with him.  The majority of the party guests traveled around 3 hours, one way, to be here.  His Aunt Deidre (Cody's sister) traveled FIVE hours, one way, to celebrate his special day!  We are so grateful to everyone who came and made his first birthday a very memorable one. 

Harrison and his Mama and Dada came from Little Rock.  His Mama, Mandi took priceless pictures of the party and I am so thankful!

Westin's BFF, Adeline was her usual cute self.

Payton and her Dada cooling off with some lemonade.

Present time!  He racked up on the toys, DVD's and books!  He has been playing with all his new toys all week.  He loves everything!

Full house!



Family picture in the photo booth.


Cousin love! Zach is trying to reign in Westin.  Colson is used to it and just patiently waiting until the pictures are over.




Westin is outta there!  I don't think Colson's expression changed the whole time.  Patient little brother.

My grandparents, Z, C and W's great grandparents, drove from Little Rock to party with us.  They just celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary, by the way!

I will always remember Westin's first birthday.  It was a day filled with family, friends, fun and most of all, LOVE.  We are overwhelmed by everyone's love and generosity.  The theme, decorations, food and special touches did not make his party.  Everyone who came made his party and we are so thankful!  We love you all!

P.S.  I'm making a collage of the photo booth pictures so I'll post those soon.  :)  They are hilarious!



Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Thirty-One Gifts
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Smash Cake Time!

I think the highlight of any first birthday party is the smash cake.  I had a feeling Westin wouldn't really like his cake and I was kind of right.  I was worried that he would totally lose it during "Happy Birthday" and that we wouldn't even get to the cake.  Haha  About a week before his party we started singing "Happy Birthday" really loudly to get him used to it.  I guess it worked because he actually smiled during the singing!  :) 

The hat didn't last long because I didn't tie it very good.  It was cute while it lasted!

He was excited when he saw the cake and acted like he really wanted it.

He immediately grabbed it when I set it down.  It was almost as big as him.  :)

Then he wasn't too sure about it. 

We had to give him a little taste and even after that he was more interested in hitting it and rubbing it into the highchair.

Classic family picture.  He wanted to share some with Cody and put some on his face.







He reacted pretty much like I thought he would.  I'm not really sure why he doesn't like cake though!!  I even tried to offer him some later that night and he turned up his nose.  He definitely doesn't get that from me or Cody!


Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Thirty-One Gifts
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU

Monday, March 7, 2011

Birthday Party Details

Westin's party came together with the help of so many people!!  At the end of this post I'll list all the "credits" but a HUGE shout out goes to my Mom!  I seriously could not have done this without her.  She helped so much!  She came up LAST Sunday and stayed all week.  She cooked, cleaned, babysat, baked, decorated and did so much more.  She is the best!!  Thank you to my Dad too for letting me have Mom for a week.  :)  He also cleaned up our flower beds and did some projects around the house.  Thank you, both!!

You should be able to click on any picture to enlarge it.  His party was a labor of total love and I loved how it turned out.  I think it is okay to go big on the first party because they will never remember it so you don't have to top it!  Haha  Plus it is a celebration of your baby's first year of life!!  Not to mention a celebration of the fact that we, as his parents, survived his first year of life! :)

His party theme came about after I saw Brittany's carnival party and found a package on etsy that I liked.  His invitation set the color scheme and the over all theme.

We had a Concessions stand.

In the concessions stand we had peanuts, popcorn, animal crackers, chocolate pretzel sticks, candy and cupcakes.



One of my favorite things from his party was his cake.  It turned out just like I envisioned it.  His cake pennant was the first thing I made way back in January.  :)  I took an extra invitation and cut out his name and then attached it to some red and white bakers twine. 

His bib says, "Today I Eat Cake."  My Mom had it in his stocking at Christmas. After he actually ate his cake I realized I forgot to put it on him!  :(

You have already seen his picture stand.  Lindsey came over one morning and helped me make the ribbon wands for the older kids. 

The drink station.  We had water, lemonade and cokes.  My second favorite part of his party was the blue and white paper straws.  :)




We had a "photo booth" too!
We hung this tent from IKEA in a corner of our room for the photo booth.  Everyone took a funny picture and a regular family picture.  I'm so glad I have a picture of everyone who came!  I'll post some later. 


On the way out the door, guests were encouraged to take a lollipop and/or a lollipop cookie.



I couldn't end the post with a picture of the birthday boy himself!!  Westin had a ball at his party!

I'll be posting pictures of him and his smash cake and pictures of the actual party in the next couple of days!

CREDITS:
Inspiration-Brittany's party HERE
Party Package including all banners, cupcake toppers, cupcake wrappers, party hat, signs, water bottle labels, etc-Dimpleprints on etsy HERE (I printed everything at Office Depot)
Cake stand, concessions tent, circus tray outside, popcorn machine, class drinking jars-Brittany
Lollipop favors-Oriental Trading Company
Cake and lollipop cookies-A local lady whom I HIGHLY recommend!
Favor stickers-Party Ink on Etsy
Popcorn bags, paper straws-The Sugar Diva

I hope I didn't leave anything out!  If you have a question feel free to ask! 




Thank you!
Longaberger-Julie
Thirty-One Gifts
Twice As Nice Lettering
Stella and Dot-Danielle
Studio JRU