Monthly Archives: March 2015

Mixed Emotions

Mixed Emotions

Monday morning of this week brought with it a whole host of emotions I wasn’t expecting to have.  This week marks my last week of teaching.  With baby Molly’s arrival expected any day now, my days as a working mom are coming to an end.  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited.  In fact, there doesn’t seem to be an adjective appropriate to adequately explain the sheer joy and excitement that I’m feeling about this new adventure.  I’ve wanted to be a stay at home mom since Parker was born and after lots of prayers and loads of patience, it is finally happening.

However, I’d also be lying if I said this didn’t feel weird.  I’ve been teaching almost 10 years.  I’ve been waking up at the crack of dawn, leaving my sleeping family at home, and driving almost an hour to this building for the last 8 years.  As I’ve hit snooze each morning, quietly sneaked around the house trying not to wake everybody up, and then spent an hour (or more, some mornings) in the car, it seems so unreal.  There are aspects I will miss.  I love teaching.  I love writing lessons and seeing kids “get it” and helping those kids who don’t get it quite as easily.  I don’t love all the junk that comes with teaching; all the paperwork, added responsibilities, dealing with adults who act like children, and kids who act inhumane at times.

I’m going to miss (some) of the people I work with, I might eventually miss getting “dressed” everyday, but what I’m gaining is so much more.  I won’t miss any more school events or class parties or parent-teacher conferences.  No more scrambling when school holidays don’t line up or when sick days arise.  No more tearful phone calls from Parker in the mornings because he didn’t get to tell me bye (let me tell you how much those rip your heart out).  I’m excited to have play dates and lunch dates and not have to spend our weekends running errands that can’t be done during the week.  I can’t wait to not be scrambling to cook dinner after working all day.  I know there will be days that I’m bored or even miss the classroom.  I know there will be days that I wish I had a “real job”.  But the opportunity to spend my days with my babies is a blessing I just can’t pass up.

Walking out of my building tomorrow afternoon will be incredibly surreal.  I’m nervous, scared, and a little sad.  But, way beyond that, I’m thankful, happy, and so incredibly excited.  So long teaching (maybe just for now, maybe forever)…its been a great 10 years!

House Projects

House Projects

I don’t know about you, but our house seems like its always a work in progress.  We constantly have ideas about things we’d like to change or new things we’d like to add.  We keep a running list on a chalkboard in the garage and its so fun to cross things off!  The list usually takes us longer to complete than we’d like to admit, but it sure is a lot of fun!  It never fails that we usually add a few “off the list” projects as we discover an immediate need or want for something throughout the house.

Project #1 – Laundry Room Shelf
For years, I have HATED our laundry room.  Its a great space and serves as our main entry to the house from the garage, but parts of it have just seemed like such wasted space.  At the same time, our kitchen counter, bar area, and kitchen table were always just completely covered with clutter.  If there’s one thing I hate, its clutter.  It just drives me nuts.  Bags, mail, keys, phones, Parker’s school papers, etc…just seemed to be taking over.  A couple of years ago, I found a picture of a shelf that was the perfect look for what I wanted in our laundry room.  I needed something that would hold laundry baskets, bags, and could also serve as a space for our mail, charge cords, keys, etc and this piece looked perfect.


We were able to get our hands on some gorgeous oak planks from a friend of Matt’s and FINALLY construction started!  This was one of those projects that I had dreamed about, but never really thought it would become a reality and its just been better than I could have ever imagined!  It is the perfect place to “dump” all of our junk as we come in the house and the best part is that it keeps the kitchen clutter free!  The laundry room still isn’t perfect.  I’m planning to paint it this summer and would eventually like to add cabinets instead of the open shelf we have for storing the bottles of detergent & stain remover, but for now…its so much better!  There’s just something more soothing about doing laundry in a space you enjoy rather than a space that you hate.

Project #2 – Upstairs console table
We’ve always had this blank space in the game room that just needed some sort of skinny console table.  I found one I loved at Pottery Barn, but didn’t love the price tag, so Matt drew up the plans and we added it to the list.


I had Matt make some modifications to the plans (like usual) to better fit the space and the purpose I wanted it to serve, but it turned out just perfectly.  Its going to be a great space for some more decorative pieces and some family pictures.

Project #3 – Parker’s Crate Shelf
Converting Parker’s room to a “big boy” room has been a very slow work in progress.  He transitioned out of his crib right after he turned 2, but there were lots of nights he still wanted to snuggle and rock in the rocking chair, so I didn’t feel comfortable moving that out just yet.  I also didn’t really have anywhere to put it, so it just stayed in his room.  Once we began getting ready for baby #2, we moved the chair and needed something to fill the space in his room.  I knew I wanted something that would serve as functional storage, but would also fit with the overall decor of his room.  We also knew with all the attention being given to and work being done in the baby’s room, it might be a good idea if we did some work in his room too and it totally helped.  He’s been so excited to work upstairs in the evenings and on the weekends.


We found these great storage crates at Home Depot after Christmas and brought 9 of them home.  Matt attached them all together, added a bottom piece & some feet to help stabilize it and then we got it all painted and finished to match his room.  It was a SUPER simple project and we are so happy with how it turned out.  I’m not finished decorating it (still needs a lamp & some other things on the top), but it works great in his room and I love the added storage space for books, toys, frames, etc…

Project #4 – Rework Downstairs Closet
I don’t have any “before” pictures, but our storage closets downstairs have been a hot mess for years.  I was constantly trying to find ways to make it functional, but was never very successful.  When we cleaned out the bedroom upstairs for baby, we had lots of stuff that needed a new home, which meant that closet was going to have to work.



This closet is right in our entry way and is designed to serve as a coat closet.  Totally not practical for us.  We bought some shelves and an organizer system for the door and FINALLY have a storage closet that is both functional and organized!

Project #5 – Growth Chart
Three & half years after Parker was born, we finally have a growth chart.  Initially, the delay was my fault.  I couldn’t find anything I liked.  I wanted something that we could take with us when/if we move houses, but just didn’t like any of the “store bought” ones.  I needed something that could part of the decor in our house and not stick out like a sore thumb.  So, naturally, I started scouring Pinterest for ideas (seriously, what did we do before Pinterest?) and came across the idea of making a growth chart to look like a giant ruler.  My super talented carpenter came to the rescue again and its just perfect!


Project #6 – Bathroom Stools
Being little is tough, especially when you’re independent and determined to do things on your own.  Parker is great about washing his hands, brushing his teeth, and helping in the kitchen, but doesn’t want to be held and is really too big to be held for long periods of time anyway.  With some of the leftover wood we had from the other projects, Matt decided to build some kid stools for the bathrooms and kitchen.  They have been awesome!  I love that they aren’t some bright colored plastic stool that sticks out in the bathrooms or kitchen, but something that really “fits” with the house.  Parker loves being able to reach the sink and we all love not having to hold him while he washes his hands or brushes his teeth.


And…now that these projects are finished, its time for a new list!  Among other things, I think the top priorities right now are getting the TV frame finished, Parker’s headboard, a bigger workbench for Matt, and possibly a new side table for the living room.