Things I’m Loving

Ah, it’s once again time for me to take some time to look back at all of the things I’m loving… in life, with O and in trends. Here’s a peek into some of those moments I loved, things going on around here and a few little things I created. Usually this post would go up in the first week of the month… but we passed a lovely little virus around so I’m not exactly on op of things in internet world. At any rate, better late than never!

 

In life:

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I grabbed a few feet of gold and silver chain at the bead shop the other day just for kicks and I’ve had fun playing around with new elements and designs. Apologies for the iPhone pic. View more of work at my etsy shop. The silver necklace is my beloved necklace from A, Z and their family. I wear it almost daily.

 

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For the life of me I can’t find a photo of our house with the giant oak tree in front of it. The only one I can find is on Google Earth and I’m just not up for publishing my home address on the great big internet. Any who, we had a monstrous oak tree just a foot from our sidewalk, less than ten feet from the driveway. When we initially toured the house, we recognized that the tree was not only huge, but also appeared to have been struck by lightning and partially dead at the top. Over the last couple of years we’ve had it evaluated, quoted for trimming and even for being removed. All of the estimates were costly (to say the least) and we had high hopes that we could enjoy the tree a few years more before it became too ill to stand on its own. For the last two years we’ve had small sticks drop in the yard and on my car, then they became larger branch sized debris that would disintegrate when you picked them up. We also had new gutters installed and they were taking a beating as well. It was dying and fast. Unfortunately this fall, we noticed a family of squirrels had made a substantial nest in the trunk, which meant it was more hollow (and therefore dead) than we had originally thought. We bit the bullet and had it removed. We opted to leave the stump since it cost even more to have that removed than to have the tree chopped down. It also has a large planter built around it… and I have no clue how we would work with that mess had it been removed. I asked them to leave the stump a few inches high so that we can try to do something like this.

 

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If you look at the tulip sprouts in the photo above it gives a better idea of just how big this tree was… easily 3 feet in diameter. So why am I loving this? Well, I can rest easy knowing that it won’t be swaying in every rain and wind storm this spring, my gutters, car, home and most importantly O (the tree is right outside her window) will all be safer now that the tree is gone. After it came down, we discovered that the tree was only alive for the first 6 feet above ground… and dead for the next 30ish feet up. How do we know? Well it was hollow except for a 3 inch outer rim before the bark began, full of honeycomb (is that where all of those bees came from last summer?) and full of acorns from that sweet little squirrel family (who was not harmed in the process… I made sure). Now that we know how dead it was we totally regret not having it removed sooner. It was a “timebomb” as the tree guy called it. I was actually glad to hand him that chunk of change.

 

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Oh, it’s feeling like Spring around here! Fresh pink Lillies in my dining room. They are a great way to bring the Spring cheer in and they smelled heavenly too. Probably my favorite flowers on the planet. If you’re having a bad day or just want to smile I highly suggest buying yourself flowers.

 

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I had the pleasure of helping a friend out last week… I watched her kids with my sister (I did days while she did nights) and got to enjoy the family dog (Buddy pictured outside the door in the photo above) and I got to cherish all the things I missed about our old neighborhood and Craftsman style house. Take a moment to just love those doors and windows with me. Aren’t they spectaculator!?!? Gorgeous. I took this as the sun was coming up one morning… can you feel the quiet stillness? The kids weren’t yet awake. Tee hee!

 

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No, this pic is not a mistake… although it looks like one of those “I dropped my disposable camera face up” moments that I sometimes used to get in the middle of a roll of film. Remember film? So what is this picture supposed to be? Well I have a friend (actually our entire families are friends- our parents, sisters and even our kids) … but the youngest sister is 16 and was diagnosed with Leukemia last month. Woah. Right? Makes all my whining about what color car to get, “I’m tired of changing diapers” and “when can I squeeze in some pilates?” business seem like total crap. Because it is. This brave girl is kicking some Leukemia ass though. She’s undergoing chemo and smiling every time I see her. And she was healthy enough to come home this week between treatments. So this picture is of an orange scarf that I often wear to show my support and a yellow Dragonfly Foundation bracelet she gave me. I wear that every single day.

 

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I opened a Crate & Barrel catalog last month and saw this page. To anyone else it might be a catalog page showcasing trash cans. I saw this and was overcome with emotion. My grandpa used to say this and he was notorious for refusing to throw things out or let anything go to waste. His favorite color was yellow and this page had a handful of gray and stainless steel cans with one yellow one. Just one more thing to make me think of Papa and smile.

 

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I snapped this in one of my favorite places to visit: The Hyde Park Firehouse. I’ve admired it before. Its a historic firehouse in a really old neighborhood here in Cincinnati that is loaded with craftsman style homes and 1920’s bungalows. This firehouse is one of the older buildings in the area. I’ve been told that it once housed horse drawn firefighters. Who knows! It has a real pole and all. The actual garage is floor to ceiling original subway tile and all of the doors are original with old school knobs too! I was practically drooling.

 

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My mom received a really neat puzzle as a gift. Its a wooden jigsaw puzzle of a personal photo made by Liberty Puzzles. They make “whimsy puzzles” where the pieces aren’t traditional jigsaw shapes, but are instead ornate designs and recognizable shapes. Above you can see a man with his pipe, a person riding a bike, a bird and more. Such a cool concept and even cooler gift to receive. I bet it will be hard to put together!

With O:

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O has been loving being outside as much as possible. The weather is more mild now and as you can see from Hubby’s squint, the sun has been shining bright! Her Cozy Coop was an inside toy for the last few months but now we’ve been taking it for a spin around the block daily. Sometimes she rides and other times she enjoys pushing it and at the end of our walk she request that Daddy “rock it” like he is above.

 

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On St. Patty’s Day we gave O her first peep. Instead of eating it, she recognized that it was a “baby bird” and started kissing it. Once we told her she could eat it like candy she was elated but ended up only sucking all of the sugar coating off. Toddlerhood is grand!

 

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Lately O has been interested in helping with everything I do. I let her pour the soap into the washing machine, help water flowers and vacuum. She drags a chair to the counter as soon as she notices that I’m making something. She even brings me her apron from her play kitchen so she can help.

 

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O is also getting quite smart and witty. I told her she had to stay in the kitchen with her snack. I turned around to see that she was obeying the rule as close to the family room as she could be. Clever. Also, her new favorite books are “Georgie” better known as “Curious George” as she carries one around with her most of the day.

 

On Pinterest:

Patterns! They are everywhere lately… home decor, fashion and more. I’ve pinned my favorites on my “Patterns I Love” board.

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My new favorite apps:

CamMe works as a modern self-timer for your phone’s camera. Instead of timing though, you set up the camera and go back to pose in front of it. Wave your hand and the camera recognizes it as a cue to take the photo. Fun to have on my iphone and it adds a twist to the “selfie”.

ArtKive is an app that I have used before for work, but now that O is a little artist I’ve started a file for her as well. Take photos of your kids’ artwork and save it on the app. You can make albums, share with family and friends or even print them into a book! The app also has a feature to label the work with who made it and when. Finally, no more piles of school art. Keep it all (electronically)!

 

Tell me, what are YOU loving?

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