DIY Painted Fireplace.

I’ve always loved whitewashed brick! So much we whitewashed our fireplace!

We knew we wanted to paint our fireplace when we moved in, just took three years to do it! I’m not a huge fan of the red brick which is what most traditional fireplaces are nowadays. We headed to Home Depot and bought some brick paint and went to town.

Before we moved in, this is what the fireplace looked like. Look at little Hadley on the side, she was four years old here. This was a day when we were looking at the house, thinking about buying it, and all of the items seen here are from the previous owners.

Here is another view of the fireplace, after we put a few of our own things on it. As you can see, there is no TV or much at all in this room as we were literally moving in.

Here is my husband starting to paint the fireplace. All we did was tape up the mantle, the fireplace opening, and the sides along the wall paint. I can’t find the exact paint, but a very similar one is called Behr White Flat Masonry Stucco and Brick Paint. Kevin started painting, and I went behind him and filled in the grout parts. You can make it look super white, or very faint so you can still see some of the brick come through. We liked the look of still seeing the brick through the paint.

Here is the finished product! We are so in love with how the white looks, versus the old red brick. I’ve had so many people ask if we are going to paint the trim and mantle white also. My answer is always no, I love how it looks with the trim showing the wood.

The whitewash makes the room so much brighter! The red brick made the room look so dark! Such a small project can have huge effects on a room. Go paint that wall or change up whatever in your home. Small changes can make a difference!

Apple Nachos.

These apple nachos are an easy, healthy, sweet treat!

How to make apple nachos

Super super easy snack right here! All you need is four ingredients. That’s it! And I’m sure you’ll have all the ingredients already on hand, or some version of them. So here we go…

Ingredients:
1 apple
Almond butter (or peanut butter) (1 tbsp is what I used, but use however much you like!)
Cinnamon to taste
Chocolate chip morsels

How to make it:
Melt the almond butter so it’s smooth and creamy, and easy to drizzle
Chop / cut the apple however you like
Drizzle the almond butter over the chopped apples
Sprinkle the chocolate chip morsels over the chopped apples
Sprinkle the cinnamon on top to taste

And that is it! Super easy and simple! And a nice healthy sweet treat!

Enjoy! It’s soo good!




Weekly recap.

We had a great week, ending Hadleys spring break, cold and muddy outside, and shots at the doctor’s office. I’m recapping it all on the blog today!

Monday, April 18

Started the week with Hadleys last day of spring break, by putting together some legos she got from the Easter bunny. She literally worked on them all by herself for a few good hours! Trying to get better with pumping everyday, it’s such a struggle for me. By the time I get done feeding Huxley, and pumping, it leaves barely enough time to do much else. But I’m trying! Huxley turned two months this week! He’s growing super fast!

Tuesday, April 19

Softball practice was cancelled due to muddy fields and cold weather. My good friend Kristin came over to meet Huxley! He was a little cranky this day, but it’s okay, he’s just a little babe trying to figure out this world! It was so good to see her though! We used to work together at Kroger, and then we both quit and stayed in touch. She’s the sweetest friend!

Wednesday, April 20

Huxley has been all smiles lately, just love watching all the new things he does each and every day! I have this quote on my desk, “You are totally replaceable at work. You’re not replaceable at home. Home is your real life. Keep that perspective. Always.” Not sure who that quote is by, but I found it on Pinterest and printed it off for my desk at home. Good one to think about. Hadley and I had steak, mac and cheese, and asparagus for me for dinner. Hadley just loves her a steak.

Thursday, April 21

Huxley had his two month checkup, and had three shots in his little tiny legs! The shots weren’t fun to watch. It is always harder on the parents when the babes get shots, but he was fine within minutes. And he was fine the rest of the day too! I remember Hadley taking Tylenol and sleeping a lot. He was his normal self after the doctor appointment. The doc said he’s growing great, and doing everything he should be doing. Kevin bought a striper for the lawn, and he’s obsessed. But those lines are pretty awesome, it looks great. Hadley has been loving the laptop, she’ll watch Netflix or YouTube videos on it sometimes, she looks like an adult working some days.

Friday, April 22

For Earth Day, I made earth cinnamon rolls for Hadley before school. And printed off some earth day jokes for her to read out loud to us, and then some extra to put in her lunch for school. After she got home from school, we met my parents for dinner to celebrate my Dad’s belated birthday. Huxley slept through the entire dinner. Afterwards, we stopped at our local ice cream place for dessert!

Saturday, April 23

Hadley and I spent most of the day outside, it was the nicest weather. We took a few walks, and just hung out. Huxley loved the outdoor weather, and he took some pretty good naps too! We even managed to have a movie night, and watched Encanto. We were late to get on the Encanto bandwagon, but after watching it two times or so, we are fans! Such a cute movie, and the songs are fun!

Sunday, April 24

We started out our Sunday by taking another walk, and we saw the goats! Their is a private drive down the street, and one of the houses that is tucked back in the woods has goats! The goats with the horns are kinda scary, but it’s hilarious. Hadley had her first softball game of the season! She played so good, and the weather was the best. The girls played very well, with having only one practice! Grandma, Grandad, and her cousin Emily came out to see her play too!

Happy Monday everyone! Have a great week!

Easter decor.

I love to decorate for all the seasons and holidays. Easter is one where I don’t have many decorations, but the ones I do have are super cute!

The fireplace is always the center of decorations in our house. I love to put little things here and there on the mantel, and hang banners and things.

I’ve had the bunny banner for so long now, I don’t remember where it’s from. My guess is Target, or Hobby Lobby. Wherever it’s from, it’s lasted a long time.

Next to the fireplace, we’ve started to accumulate board games / toys in the wooden crate. I stuck the wooden Easter bunny on top of the crate for some additional decor by the fireplace.

In the corner cabinet in our kitchen, I placed a small bunny to give it an Easter vibe.

In the bathroom, I like to switch out some of the things on the shelves. And I always change out the hand towels for each holiday / season.

Love to decorate for the seasons! Easter is only a few short days away. Nothing like decorating at the lats minute this year. #newbornlife

Weekly recap.

We had a busy week and weekend, lots to do to get ready for a two-day recital. I’m recapping it all on the blog today!

Monday, April 4

Monday morning started off with Huxley in the swing, and I forgot to buckle him in, and he had managed to kick his blanket off of him. And slide way down from kicking his feet. He was ready to get out.

When I take a shower, sometimes the only way I can get one is by putting Huxley in his pillow as we call it. Kevin was doing something, and then came up to lay by him in case he started to cry. He ended up falling asleep, he loves the sound of the bathroom fan and the shower.

When Hadley got home after school, and finished her homework, we played her new game Monopoly Builder. She’s been begging to play this ever since Grandma and Grandad gave her this for her belated Christmas gifts. It’s a really fun game, and has a different twist on it than the original Monopoly.

Hadley ready for bed in her new jammies, they are so soft and comfy.

Tuesday, April 5

Tuesday morning, Hadley made her own lunch! She beat Kevin getting up and wanted to have everything ready before he woke up. She succeeded! It was so cute. I think the reason she wants to rush downstairs in the mornings, is because she knows I’m down there with Huxley.

After school drop off, Huxley has been sleeping for a bit during this time. I’ve been able to get in a workout while he sleeps, which has been amazing! I just workout right in the family room, while he sleeps on the ottoman.

Wednesday, April 6

Hadley was exhausted after school; she usually is super tired during the week. School just takes it out of her. She changed into her jammies before dinner on Wednesday. I think this was the night Kevin had to attend a coach meeting for Hadley’s softball, and Huxley and I laid in her bed with her for a few minutes.

Thursday, April 7

Hadley looked super tired before school on Thursday, but she’s all smiles as usual. After school, Hadley and I had plans to surprise Kevin with dinner. This was his last day of paternity leave, he was off for 50 something days and it was amazing. He cooked lunch and dinner the majority of the days, and I’ve been super spoiled. So we thought we’d return the favor and made his favorite meal, steak, asparagus, and potatoes. In between cooking and grilling, we got in a game of Builder Monopoly again this week. We had a good night before Kevin went back to work the next day.

Friday, April 8

I told myself I was going to get up earlier and make Hadley breakfast before school, while I’m on maternity leave. She’s been in a funk lately, and not eating anything until lunch at school, and then most of the time barely eats what we pack her for lunch. So, I’m trying to get her to eat breakfast, in which I hope will get her to eat more for lunch. I made cinnamon rolls, and she ate one and a half and a glass of orange juice. Progress.

Huxley was a champ and kept himself content while I showered for the day. All smiles in his pillow, laying outside the bathroom while I showered.

My parents came over for Hadley’s first dance recital. She was so excited for the recital! We had front row seats, so we had a great view of her dances. Huxley slept through the entire thing which was awesome. And Hadley did so good, dancing with her friends on stage!

Saturday, April 9

We started our Saturday morning by watching the movie, Mary Poppins. Huxley seemed to be semi-interested in the movie, maybe it was all the music from the songs.

Later on in the afternoon, Kevin’s parents came over for Hadley’s dance recital night number two! I’m so glad both sets of grandparents were able to come and support her. She was beyond excited. It was such a joy watching her shine on stage, she did great!

Sunday, April 10

Hadley was on the “blue list” for spelling this week, which is the harder words. She got 100%! They were hard words for first grade, we practiced with her over and over all week!

On Sundays, I get my Happy Planner out and look at the week ahead.

We are slowly introducing Huxley to his room. Taking naps in his crib, and changing diapers when we are upstairs.

Hadley could seriously live outside, no matter the weather conditions. She opened up her new chalk and drew on the driveway.

We gave Huxley his first real bath! Up until this point, he’s been gettin bathed on the bathroom counter with a washcloth. At first, he cried a lot and then calmed down. He’ll get better the more he gets used to it.

It was a great fun, busy weekend!

Happy Monday!

Our favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe.

This recipe is so simple and one of our favorites to make. All we do is literally follow the back of the Nestle Tollhouse bag! We have two small twerks to the recipe, but that’s it! It’s probably my favorite cookie recipe, ever.

They are the softest chewiest cookie. So so very good.

The recipe can be found on the back of the tollhouse bag of chocolate chips. I will spell out the recipe according to how we make it!

Ingredients:
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 cup Crisco shortening sticks
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup packed-brown sugar
2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 bag Toll House Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels

How to make it:
Preheat oven to 350°
In small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt
In large mixing bowl, beat Crisco, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla until creamy
Add eggs one at a time, beating after each egg being added
Beat in flour mixture gradually
Stir in chocolate morsels
Drop a little larger than a spoonful onto an ungreased cookie sheet
Bake 9-11 minutes
Cook on baking sheets, and move to a wire rack

The dough should look like this after everything has been added. Pretty thick, not creamy at all.

How the cookies are spaced out before being put in the oven.

This recipe makes about 40 cookies, depending on how small or big you make them. You will want to eat these in one sitting, not even joking. If you make them, let me know how they turn out for you!

Weekly Recap.

We had a lovely week/weekend, and I’m recapping it all on the blog!

Monday, March 28

Hadley had her last indoor soccer game of the season last Monday night, and her little bro is her biggest fan. He just doesn’t know it yet! Just love watching her play sports, I know these years go by so fast so I’m trying to savor every little moment.

For dinner, we tried this recipe in the crockpot, and it was pretty good! Found the recipe from Kristin at @everydayisdarling on Instagram. I don’t know if our crockpot is super high, but we cooked it for about four hours, and it could’ve been like two or three.

Tuesday, March 29

On some rare occurrences, I get to take Hadley to school in the mornings she gets super excited. I’m usually feeding her little brother which feels like every hour some days. Plus, it feels like I haven’t driven in forever, so the quick drive to school works.

Started working out and loving it! I couldn’t wait to get the all clear from the doc to start exercising again, which wasn’t too much longer after delivery. Four weeks instead of the usual six, I’ll take it!

Slowly introducing tummy time to the little man on occasion. He doesn’t really like it just yet, but I count laying on our chest while he’s on his stomach tummy time too so he’s getting practice.

Kevin cut the grass for the first time this season, it’s so green and thick! It might be a little cold outside, but the grass looks like Spring is here to me!

Wednesday, March 30

Huxley is starting to smile, and it’s the cutest! Somedays, he’s fussier than others, so we think of different ways to distract him! 99% of the time, when you walk outside, he instantly calms down. God bless that little guy; he’s going to love the outdoors just as much as his family does.

Thursday, March 31

How we take showers during the day when it’s just the two of us. I put him in his seat, or lounger in the bathroom doorway, and he’ll usually fall asleep. The sound of the bathroom fan, and the shower is like a giant sound machine!

My friend Laura came over to meet Huxley! He is crying, but it was time to eat, and I wanted her to hold him before he ate for what feels like forever sometimes!

Kevin burping him at night, sometimes he won’t burp for me, but he does for Kevin most times.

Friday, April 1

Friday was pretty low key. We started the day off by going to Hadley’s school for their all-school mass. She loves it when we go, and while we’re both on leave why not! After school, we put together a different swing we have to see if Huxley likes it. He loves it!

Saturday, April 2

Hadley has finally come around with her little brother, she loves to hold him and her favorite thing is to tickle him to wake up to eat! Went to the basement to change over the laundry, put Huxley on the bean bag next to Hadley. The look on his face is like, where am I?

We bought new light fixtures for the outside of our house, along with new bulbs. Kevin has been obsessed with how bright it makes our house look now. Love it.

Sunday, April 3

My Dad came over to celebrate a very belated Christmas. My Mom was sick, so she stayed home. The kids had fun opening presents in April, that’s for sure!

Happy Tuesday friends!

Newborn must-haves.

I wanted to share some of the items that we have used nearly every day these past two months with our little man Huxley. It’s very easy to get overwhelmed with all the things to choose from pre-baby. When you have no idea what will work and what won’t work, etc. Even after having my daughter who is now seven, things have drastically changed since then. Everything here I would highly recommend. You can view the actual item’s site by clicking on the pink link.

1.Nursing Pillow – I’ve used this nursing pillow pretty much every day since Huxley was born 6 weeks ago today. The couch is pretty much where I live at right now 24/7. Having a nursing pillow around all the time, helps tremendously when breastfeeding.

2. Cosy Nation Baby Lounger – This lounger is THE best! It’s comparable to the DockATot or Snuggle Me at half the price. I love how you can pull the strings at the end tight, for when they are super tiny, which helps them feel more snug. When they start to grow, you can untie the strings, and the lounger gets wider and grows with them. It’s a safe place to put baby until they start rolling over.

3. Burt’s Bees Reversible Blanket – You can never have enough blankets, right? We keep the temperature at our house around 71-73 degrees right now. And babies cannot control their body temperatures just yet, so he gets lots of blankets to snuggle up with and stay warm. The Burt’s Bees blanket is my favorite out of all of the blankets we have, it keeps him super warm.

4. Water Bottle – This brand “Simple Modern” is my favorite for water bottles. We bought Hadley the 14oz size for school, and she loves it! The water stays super cold, and it doesn’t leak. I bought myself the larger 32oz size, since I’m breastfeeding, I need to drink more water than normal. So why not get a new fun water bottle to make drinking water more fun.

5. Racerback Nursing Bra – Out of the three different nursing bras I bought, this one is my favorite. I’m fairly large chested so I like the racer back bras, it feels more like a sports bra, and hold me up while not being too tight on the girls.

6. Portable Sound Machine – I always have this in the diaper bag, or in the diaper caddy in the living room where we are most of the time. It’s always nice to have to distract the babe if need be. It comes with a USB cord to charge, but the key is to remember to charge it before you go somewhere!

7. Footie Outfits – Footie outfits with zippers are the way to go when they are teeny tiny. Since having my daughter Hadley seven years ago, they now have two zippers in footies now! It makes it easier for diaper changes, you can unzip from the feet verses the top and expose their little bellies.

8. Spectra S2 Plus Breast Pump – Pumping is not my favorite thing to do, but I’m so glad I got the Spectra S2 pump. It’s very easy to figure out, and I’ve had no problems with it so far. I paid an extra $30 I think or something like that through insurance, but it came with a backpack and extra bottles. I ended up returning the diaper bag I originally had and using this one!

Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear what newborn items you love during this phase of having a new baby! It’s so hard to figure out what will work until the baby actually arrives, but thankfully, most things are returnable if they don’t work!

Friday favorites (on a Saturday).

Happy Saturday everyone! I’m ready for the weekend but being off on maternity leave everyday feels like the weekend really. Spring has arrived, but Cincinnati weather still thinks it’s winter! Anyways, here are some favorites for this Saturday!

YELLOWSTONE

For this maternity leave, I bought a variety of movies to watch. We’re talking like twenty different movies, ones that I’ve seen before but ones that I don’t have. Along with the movies, I also bought all four seasons of the Yellowstone series. I’ve heard so many good things about this series, I wanted to have the actual DVD’s. I have finished the series, and it was so so good. Loved it so much I can’t wait for season five! You can purchase all four seasons here on Amazon.

WILL SMITH & CHRIS ROCK AT THE OSCARS

If you haven’t heard by now, the Will Smith and Chris Rock event at the Oscar’s then you are living under a rock! Will Smith smacked the s*** out of Chris Rock at the Oscar’s! Chris Rock was making a joke about Will’s wife Jada’s bald head, and I guess Will got super mad at the joke and walked right up to Chris Rock and smacked him. For me personally, I think something needs to happen to Will for his actions. I mean, it’s a pretty important event that happens every year and for someone to behave the way he did should have consequences. It’s a shame because I’ve always liked Will Smith, but after this, it goes to show all these Hollywood actors think the rules don’t apply to them. I’m glad he resigned from the Academy and has shown some remorse towards Chris Rock. This moment will never be forgotten, and it will always be talked about every year at the Oscar’s now.

CUT THE GRASS

Kevin cut our grass for the first time of the season! It’s pretty chilly in Cincinnati right now, but the grass is growing like it should be Spring and warmer weather. I cannot wait until I can cut the grass, which would mean being away from Huxley long enough to do that!

HUXLEY SMILING

Huxley started smiling! It’s the funniest thing, he’ll be looking at something on the wall or the fireplace and just start smiling. He’s not really smiling at us yet, but it’s so cute to see. I can’t wait until he really starts to notice who is who in the family, and smiles and reacts to us.

WORKOUTS

I started back to working out after getting the go ahead from my doctor! I’m not up to doing the hard HIIT workouts I was doing before getting pregnant, but I am working on it. Right now, all I really have time for are 15 minute workouts, but I’ll get into a routine and be able to do longer ones. And when the weather decides to warm up, we’ll go on walks/runs for sure!

Happy weekend everyone!