Mountain Top Maternity Shoot!

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again…

We are so VERY blessed to have a close friend who is a professional photographer!

And this friendship paid off… yet again… this past Sunday when Misty offered to do a maternity shoot for us! 

So, we packed everyone up and headed out to Beauty Spot at the top of Unaka Mountain (on the border of Tennessee and North Carolina).



We didn’t take the photo shoot too seriously.  I mean, honestly… what’s the point when you’re trying to include a child who is 2 1/2 years old.  We just tried to have fun and make the most of the gorgeous scenery.  And in the end I think we ended up with some really beautiful pictures (as well as a few silly ones)… not just of me and the bump, but of Craig and Bailey as well!



















All pictures courtesy of Spangler Photography!  Thank you again Misty… you’re awesome!


Teacher Appreciation Week

Bailey’s been attending the same pre-school since she was just 6 weeks old.  And over the past 2+ years she’s had some wonderful teachers and made some great friends!  She absolutely loves being at school!  Just look at her class picture from this year…


…doesn’t she just look like one of those happy-at-school kind of kids?  Well she certainly is!  And who wouldn’t be with these sweet teachers and adorable classmates (in case you’re curious, Bailey’s best friend/boy friend, Colin, is the cutie on the end in the yellow shirt)!

So, in honor of teacher appreciation week (this past week) we did a couple of things to show our appreciation for the wonderful teachers in Bailey’s life.

For starters, Bailey was given a piece of paper to decorate and return to the school as a gift for her teachers.  So we pulled out some foam letters (left over from my DIY kitchen word art project) and washable paint… and Bailey went to town (despite the fact that there was a giant baby bump all up in her work space)!




After the paint was dried, Bailey and I removed the foam letters.


The budding artist was pretty satisfied with her work… and so were her teachers when she presented it to them the following morning!

The next token of our appreciation was some “Thanks A Latte” cards that Bailey and I put together for each of her four teachers.  All it took was a few Starbucks gift cards and left over card stock from Bailey’s birthday invitations.  Unfortunately, due to a crazy work week, Craig being out of town and the fact that I’m 8 months pregnant, I didn’t have quite as much energy to invest in the teacher gifts as I have had in the past (see past teacher gifts here and here).  But in spite of all this, I still think they turned out pretty nice!




I also whipped up a breakfast casserole for a pot-luck style breakfast that us full-time parents hosted for the pre-school staff on Friday.  I was given back an empty dish at the end of the day, so I’m assuming that the food was a success.

Anyway, to wrap this post up Bailey, Craig and I would like to send out another big “thank you” to all of the teachers in our lives!  We appreciate you all very much!


Built-In Progress Report

We’ve got paint (for an added pop on the back of the built-ins)


…and we’ve got cabinets!




Now we just have to decide on a material for the counter tops, build shelves, add the trim, and so on…


But even though we’re still far from finished, if you use a little imagination you can almost see it…


…a completed built-in desk and built-in book case/entertainment area, that is!

Can you see it?  I know we can!  And we’re getting pretty darned excited to get it all done… hopefully before our new little guy arrives!


Kids Mirror Gallery Wall

As you know, Craig and I have been gradually working on transitioning Bailey’s nursery to a shared room for her and her soon-to-arrive brother.  The first step in this process was the addition of a newly painted twin-sized bed.  After moving in the bed and rearranging the rest of the furniture in the room we were left with this.


A giant, blank wall over the dresser/changing area and Bailey’s new big-girl bed. 

At first the thought of filling this space was completely overwhelming.  Whatever we chose to do would have to be large enough to fill the wall while still being bold and fun enough to feel right in a kids room.  Not to mention we didn’t want it to cost a fortune.

So, I began racking my brain.  I kept thinking that I wanted something fun and colorful.  I considered doing a wall of books (as seen here), a frame collage (as seen here), an art gallery wall (as seen here), or a wall of old board games (as seen here).  But none of those ideas really felt right.

Then I remembered the pile of thrifted mirrors I had been collecting over the last several months in hopes of creating a mirror gallery wall somewhere in the house similar to this…

mirror wall pin 1

…or this.

mirror wall pin 2

And I thought that this could be the perfect solution to the giant-green-monster-of-a-wall in Bailey’s room!

So, I covered the mirrors with newspaper and laid them out in the yard (with a block of scrap wood under each one) so that they could be sprayed with a coat or two of primer.


After they were all primed it was time to divide them by their desired colors and let Craig begin painting. 







I carefully removed the newspaper and used a razor to scrape any random paint splatters off of the mirrors.

Then came the fun difficult part… deciding how to arrange the mirrors on the wall.  For this I relied on the giant stack of magazines in our recycle bin.  I cut and taped together sheets of paper to represent the approximate size and shape of each mirror.  Then I played around with the arrangement by taping them to the wall, stepping back to take a look, and adjusting things as needed.


Once I settled on an arrangement I was happy with I began adding the mirrors.


In the end we were left with this…

I just love the way the mirrors fill the giant void that had previously been on that wall!  Not to mention how they help to bounce the light around the room! 

Not too bad for $25 worth of thrifted and yard-saled mirrors and some already-owned spray paint!  Now… it’s time to get down to business and get the rest of the room pulled together!  This baby is going to be here before we know it!


Weekend Visitors!

We were so excited to have our friends Jared & Melanie come to visit this weekend.  And we were even more excited to get to meet their sweet daughter Caroline for the first time!

Saturday we decided to check out the ‘pARTy on mARkeT festival in downtown Kingsport.  Unfortunately, I was so busy taking pictures of these two that I entirely forgot to take pictures of any of the artists or other vendors.  Woops!


After a yummy Cinco de Mayo lunch at La Campina we headed back to the house to nap (mommies included!) and then play outside.

The girls seemed to really enjoy their time at the kids’ table together!



Bailey got some extra help with her golf swing from Jared…




…and then she enjoyed testing out her new kite that Jared and Melanie (both NASA employees) brought her!




Meanwhile, Caroline seemed to be content just to hang out and play with the chalk .



What a fun, relaxing way to spend a weekend!  I wish every weekend could be like this one!