Monthly Archives: February 2013

A Hobby Update

Other than hobbies related to Tyler’s birthday, I realized I hadn’t written about any other hobbies I’d been involved with lately.  I have had a little bit of time, specifically last weekend to do some baking and some sewing.  Unheard of to have that much time right?

Actually the baking came about because I made a cake to take into work last week, and accidentally bought the ingredients for the wrong cake.  Luckily I had all the ingredients for the one for work, but that meant I had all the ingredients for the other sitting around.  When Eric found out that it was hot chocolate bundt cake, he decided I needed to make it right away and even gave me extra time away from Tyler to make it.  It was pretty good.  I thought it was a little dry unlike the chocolate sour cream bundt cake for work.  Eric has eaten the majority of this cake (definitely unheard of!) although I have eaten my fair share.  The interesting thing about this cake is that it uses hot chocolate mix in the cake and the glaze.  I think you can definitely taste the mix in there.  It is an interesting cake.

Eric's Hot Chocolate Cake

Eric’s Hot Chocolate Cake

Also last weekend I started working on my next sewing project, our chair cushions.  I realized I need to do a zipper.  This was definitely not a beginner’s project, and I probably should have sat down and really thought it out a little more before I started cutting.  I “think” it will turn out ok though.  I’m itching to get started on it again, but haven’t really had time this week to go somewhere to buy a couple zippers.  Hopefully I’ll get one done this weekend, but that’s a pretty lofty goal at this point. I think I’ll just be happy if I get the zippers bought.

In other news, it’s only a week until Tyler’s birthday, and he’s walking a lot more.  I still haven’t caught it on video though.  Hopefully we’ll catch it this weekend since he’s been coming home pretty grumpy from daycare this week.  In their reports they tell me he’s doing a lot of walking though.  Sometimes even pants-less!  I’m definitely looking forward to the end of the work day tomorrow!  Yay Friday and Happy Weekend!


Fiddlin’ Around

This weekend was the weekend I’d been waiting for for a very long time.  It was the Dierks Bentley and Miranda Lambert concert!  Dierks is one of mine and Eric’s favorite artists.  I had seen him as the headliner many years ago in Springfield with Shelley.  We were in the general admission area for that one, and it was my favorite concert I had been too.  Shelley touched Dierks…twice, and I got a guitar pick.  Beyond that, Dierks just put on a really good show.  He came to Bloomington last February, but being really pregnant at that point, a concert seemed like a bad idea.  I had seen Miranda before too.  Mel and I saw her in Bloomington in September 2011.  She was also good, but not nearly the showperson that Dierks is.

Dierks Bentley between songs

Dierks Bentley between songs


My mom came up for the night to watch Tyler.  Unfortunately, he’s been cranky and grouchy most of the weekend (teething), so she didn’t really get to have much fun with him.  Eric and I were very thankful she came up though.  We both really enjoyed the night out.  We went out to supper at Prairie Fire before the show and then headed over to the Assembly Hall to wait for the show to begin.

During Up on the Ridge they played scenes that looked like they were "up on a ridge"

During Up on the Ridge they played scenes that looked like they were “up on a ridge”. Possibly my favorite song of the entire show.

We had really good seats.  We were on the floor in the first row, of a slightly raised up area.  They were really good seats.  Even though there was a general admission area, I figured Eric and I were too old to be in that area (and standing up the entire night) at this point!

Miranda singing Fastest Girl in Town.

Miranda singing Fastest Girl in Town.

Eric “cowboyed” himself up for the show (which I forgot to get a picture of the two of us.)  Even though I begged him not to, he wore his cowboy hat, belt buckle and boots.  I broke out my boots too.

At the end Dierks and Miranda sang Bad Angel together.

At the end Dierks and Miranda sang Bad Angel together.

It was a really great night for both Eric and me.  We had a great time, and we’ve also had a great weekend with Tyler really starting to walk (and him teething which hasn’t been so great.)  Hopefully some video of Tyler walking coming in the next post (if I can ever manage to have my phone nearby when he decides to walk!)


Weekend Away and a Birthday Pennant

It’s getting harder and harder to keep writing 2 posts a week!  Hopefully, by the end of this week things will calm down a little bit.  Although then we start gearing up for March, otherwise known as birthday month in this house!

Well my week away from Tyler has ended.  After my work trip to Ann Arbor , Eric and I left for a weekend in Galena with friends that Friday afternoon.  Eric’s mom came to stay with him.  We’re pretty lucky that both grandmas are so willing to come and watch him when we have something we really want to go do.  (My mom is coming up this Friday to watch Tyler while we go see Miranda and Dierks!  Can’t wait!)  Plus it’s good bonding time since Tyler doesn’t get to see his grandparents too much due to the distance.  It was the first time Eric’s been away from Tyler for more than 24 hours while obviously I’ve been away a bit more (Does that make me a bad mother?).  I was definitely looking forward to some time to sleep in and not take care of the baby for awhile.  It turned out pretty nice, and I think Eric enjoyed it more than he’s willing to admit even though we both did miss Tyler quite a bit.  When we got home Sunday afternoon, he was certainly happy to see us too, which is always nice too!  At least it helps us feel like we’re succeeding in this parenting thing currently.

This is another busy week although at least I’m home for this one though.  Besides the concert on Friday, there’s cake to make for work, plenty of household chores to catch up on from being gone so much, not to mention Tyler and Guster time.  I’m definitely ready for another weekend, and it’s only Tuesday!

After this week, we’ll be in full birthday planning mode I think.  We have made quite a bit of progress in this area though.  We ordered (or I should say Eric ordered while I was exercising) Tyler’s birthday presents last night, and on our drive home on Sunday, we figured out the menu for the family party on the 9th.   What I finished quite awhile ago is Tyler’s pennant for his party and his room.

Tyler's birthday puppy pennant

Tyler’s birthday puppy pennant

I used this tutorial to create the pennant.  I have to say my favorite part was sewing the triangles to the bias tape.  I found it much harder to keep a straight line when I was sewing the pieces of fabric together to make the triangles.  For my first sewing project, I think it turned out pretty well.  It was really simple.  I think a few good first sewing project definitely.  Hopefully Tyler will enjoy it as he gets older, and I think it’ll add some nice color to his room once his birthday is over.  I do wish I’d picked a little bit more colorful fabric, but since this was my first time actually choosing coordinating fabrics the blues work just fine.  Also, the puppies and bones on the fabric are just so cute too!

Detailed shot of the fabric used

Detailed shot of the fabric used

Well that’s where we stand with the birthday preparations at this point.  I think by the next time, I do a birthday post we’ll hopefully have had at least one party!

Kitchen Changes

Ahhhh…back to writing and back to being at home.  I was in Ann Arbor the last 3ish days for work.  I missed Guster and Tyler horribly, so I’m so happy to be home tonight.  I played with Tyler most of tonight, and now I have Guster curled up next to me on the couch, so life is back to normal.  Eric and I are leaving for a weekend with friends on Friday though, so I’m spending a lot of time away for my boys (other than Eric) this week.  As much as I missed them, it was awfully nice not to have to worry about getting up in the middle of the night the past 2 nights though! 🙂

Now on to our big changes of last week…our new appliances!  They look pretty amazing.  We were supposed to get them on February 1st, but the dishwasher wasn’t available then, so the 8th it was.  It was worth the wait though.  We bought the appliances online from Home Depot before the end of January.  The deal they had going on ended at the end of January.  It was 10% off the cost, but it really cut down the price quite a bit.  I think we both would have preferred to actually talk to a salesperson to get our questions answered as we were ordering, but it seemed like it would take us less time to take care of it at home than deal with the people at Home Depot.  The other issue was that Home Depot online has a much wider selection than in the store, which was really important with our somewhat strange kitchen arrangement.  Mostly having the fridge right next to a wall made it a little harder to find a fridge that would open enough to get into the drawers.

The new appliances

The new appliances

Our new oven/range is a Samsung.  It’s a convection oven which I can definitely tell a difference in how evenly it bakes.  So far I’ve baked some chicken and cookies in it, and they’ve both turned out really well.  Having a light in there is a nice change since the other broke shortly after Eric moved into the house.  The new dishwasher is a Whirlpool.  We haven’t actually run it yet since I was gone earlier in the week, so no cooking took place.  Even though we had the appliances installed, Eric had to do a little repair on the drain because of size differences between the old and new drains.  We’re both waiting to see how quietly it runs and also not having to push the button multiple times before it actually starts and being able to use the delay feature.  There’s a lot left to figure out with the dishwasher yet!  The fridge is an LG, and it is the most amazing appliance I’ve ever had in my entire life.  I think it’s changed my life! (That might be a slight exaggeration…)  It has an ice maker and water dispenser in the door.  I don’t have to bend over to get into the fridge.  I’m not sure how I feel about the drawer on the bottom for the freezer yet, but it’s just so roomy and awesome at this point.

Now we’re trying to decide what is next for our kitchen.  We’re definitely going to be doing something with the floor (since it doesn’t come clean anymore), adding a backsplash, and figuring out something to do with the ugly counters.  The appliances were a good start though.  Seeing that change we can’t wait to see what other changes we can make to the kitchen!

Birthday Preparations

Well another week is in the books.  We’re finally healthy after our last bout of stomach bugs.  It took long enough with even an unnecessary trip to the ER for Tyler.  This week I learned not to listen to the patient advisory line because they have to advise you to go to the ER if there is even the slimmest chance that there is something “major” wrong.  I’m trusting my instinct from now on.

Now for something more fun.  I’m right in the midst of planning Tyler’s birthday party.  It’s only 29 days until I have a 1 year old!  Seriously where did the last year go??  The plan at this point is to have a regular birthday party on Tyler’s actual birthday (March 9) for our families and then do separate get togethers for our friends later in the month.  We decided to go this route so that we wouldn’t have to find somewhere outside our house to host the party since there was no way we could fit all our friends and family into our house at one time.  Also, it means that Eric and Tyler’s (and some other friends’) birthdays can be combined and we don’t have to make Tyler’s day such a big deal for everyone else.  Eric is a big fan of not making our family and friends mix! (It’s amazing we didn’t have 3 or 4 separate weddings.)  If he had his way we’d divide up our families for parties too.  Needless to say he’s not actually planning any of these parties.

So the family party is the one that I’ve really been working on so far. About 3 weeks ago at this point, I ordered the invitations.  I got them late last week around the same time the stomach flu hit, and I just got them sent out this week. The theme for the family party is puppy dogs.  Tyler adores dogs, mostly Guster, but other dogs at doggie daycare when we go to pick up Guster too.  Guster is not exactly the biggest fan of Tyler though.  I’m hoping someday that will change when Tyler is older and doesn’t hit Guster with blocks or pull his ears and fur.  Back to the invitations, I combed Vistaprint for something cute and appropriate for the party and came up with these, which I think are perfect for the party.

Invitation for Tyler's first birthday party

Invitation for Tyler’s first birthday party

The invitations went out this week, so far I know that my parents are coming…provided no one is sick, and it doesn’t snow.  I’m still in the middle of deciding what the heck we’re having for lunch that day and how to make it fit the theme.  at least, I know exactly what we’re having for dessert though!  I can’t wait to make the desserts.    There will be lots of night baking the week I’m sure!  The decor I’ve pretty well got figured out (the fabric that I’ve been sewing for the party).

I can’t wait for this all to come together, and to see Tyler turn 1!  Although I don’t know how I’m going to get it all done in 29 days either, I’m sure it’ll be great (for Eric and me at least) either way!

Unexpected absence…

So I didn’t plan on taking a week off from writing blog posts, it just happened.  We’ve all been sick and not just a little sick.  A lot sick.  Miss work, feel like you’re dying sick.

It all started last Tuesday when Eric woke up with the stomach flu.  He stayed home from work and got over it really quickly.  He was pretty well better by the time Tyler and I got home from work/day care.  I was fully expecting to wake up Wednesday and feel nauseous and all that fun stuff, but thought I’d dodged the bullet when I made it through the day and babysitting one of Tyler’s friends that night without even feeling sick.  Then 1am came and that feeling all changed.  I had all these great visions of staying in bed all day and watching movies to make myself feel better like Eric did on his day at home. Then we got Tyler up and he threw up, so it was a “fun” day to say the least.

I didn’t get better that day though.  I stayed home on Friday too, so did Tyler.  Then Eric came home from work feeling sick again that night, and it started all over again.  *sigh*.  We’ve been going back and forth believing we’ve gotten better, only to descend sadly back into the stomach flu.  Actually Tyler has gotten better (knock on wood!) but has developed a nasty cold and is also slowly getting his 2 front teeth, so he’s not the happiest little guy still.

The absolute worst part I think for both Eric and I was missing Super Bowl Sunday with our friends and all the wonderful foods that means.  We’ve promised ourselves when (if??) we finally get better we’ll have all those fun foods even if it is without the party. At this point I haven’t had a real meal in 5 days and am getting really anxious for that party!  It’s good for the old diet plan though right?

So nothing too exciting to talk about, but I have a lot of things going on specifically for Tyler’s birthday party.  I’ve gotten lots of stuff for it!  So hopefully more exciting posts coming soon!