Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Ice Cream Parlor Gender Reveal

I looked for gender reveal ideas for weeks and finally had a brilliant idea…ice cream! I knew I wanted us all to be surprised at once, including Miss. Hartley. So thinking of a creative idea that didn’t require one of us or a friend to coordinate was hard. And since I am a HUGE ice cream fan, I couldn’t imagine a better way to reveal the sex of baby #2. The plan was to just hand our sealed envelope to the nice person working to let them work their magic on hiding the color underneath a mountain of whipped cream and sprinkles.

However, this perfectly planned photoshoot DID NOT go this way. We went straight from our ultrasound appointment to meet our friend and photographer at the selected location. Excited and giddy we just couldn’t wait to see what was hidden in the envelope we were given. BUT, when we gave our envelope to the ice cream counter, we got the most awkward reaction…”Am I supposed to read this? There is nothing listed in this envelope”. What?!?!? Even after repeated requests to our sonographer to include a written sticky or note within, she didn’t. And after about 10 people at the ice cream parlor trying to read our little baby’s private parts with no luck, we declared this a huge #genderrevealfail. So after 4 days of waiting, we finally reset for a new day. And hey, what’s the big deal of waiting a few days more. It made the final reveal super anticipated!

Hartley was so adorable and absolutely LOVED this ice cream shoot. She was showing off all her poses and completely eating up all the attention. She also declared she was Team Blue with daddy.

So after a few teasers with pink, blue and sprinkled ice cream we dug into our sundae to find out we are having a…

GIRL!!!

Using this opportunity in the retro-designed Jitterbug’s Ice Cream Café in Old Town Manassas, Virginia, we also snapped a few annual family photos. Thanks to the owners of Jitterbug’s and our fabulous photographer Heather Adams for making my vision come to life! Every pregnancy is unique and should be cherished. Capturing these special moments of our growing family means everything to me. For more pictures, check out Heather’s blog!

The Howdyshell house is going to be filled with all the sugar, spice, and everything nice that come with little girls and I couldn’t be more excited!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Our Tribe’s Birthday Party

Months of planning finally paid off and we had an amazing time celebrating our tribe’s birthdays all together! Willie turns 32, I turned 30 (ekkk), and Hartley turned 3 all within a few weeks of one another, so I thought, why not have a combination birthday bash?!? Oh and finding out I was pregnant (YES) on July 4th weekend pushed me even further to have the most amazing surprise for our family and friends in September.

So SURPRISE!! We are having our 2nd child. The first trimester was stressful. I am so lucky in some ways to have skipped this nervous, anxious, worrisome first 3 months with Hartley. But we made it and everything looks healthy so far, so onto our second trimester already…whew.

We are very blessed to have such an amazing support system. Our family and friends always go over and beyond to help and support us, so having this party to enjoy with them was fabulous. I made heavy appetizers and with help we rounded out a great menu that kept everyone full and happy. Ohhh and did I mention these adorable DIY teepee food labels I made using scrapbook paper, chalk labels, and little feather toothpicks from Hobby Lobby? I mean…how perfect are they?

For the cake I bought 3 different round cake sizes and flavors from Whole Foods and tiered and decorated myself. It turned out perfect! I will have to do a detailed post on this, because for a little over $60 this cake turned out perfect and was super yummy!!

Some other details I created were using leftover mini dreamcatchers from Hartley’s room, making fun kid goodie bags, farmers market flowers, fun tribal designed plates, napkins, toothpicks from Hobby Lobby.

Thank you everyone again for showering us with love and support!

Photos: Kimberly Lyddane Photography

My Makeup: Beauty By Brigid

Friday, March 17, 2017

Vintage Inspired Girl’s Room

I’m so excited to finally have this room DONE!

I wanted a whimsical vintage room with a splash of bohemian flair for my daughter, and I think I accomplished that. First change was the beautiful grey paint color which is Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray. Then the wallpaper…oh the highly debated, highly contentious wallpaper. I fell in LOVE with this botanical wallpaper and just thought it would bring such a fun unique touch to the room without a huge cost (keep an eye out for the price, I got it when it was $0.98/sq ft). We got it up but not without Willie saying about a 100 times “I hate this” and “wallpaper is stupid”. If there is one thing that can cause divorce, it may be putting up wallpaper together 😉 BUT we made it and he loves it now. This wallpaper was a pre-pasted roll that you spray on and let sit for a few minutes and then apply to the wall. I found the pre-pasted much harder to work with then the traditional gluing method I did in the bathroom. It wasn’t as manageable and wasn’t as sticky so it slid and the edges would not lay down. We have a few mistakes, but for not being pros, I think we did a fabulous job…and we are still married.

The furniture is the same as what we used in her nursery. Willie’s grandmother’s furniture set included a twin headboard, so I really wanted to incorporate all the pieces in her new room. It has such an amazing sentimental value and vintage look that just makes it perfect for her.  I got an organic bamboo mattress for her and stunning Target bedding. She is really going to sleep like a princess.

Oh the chandelier…gorgeous. We just happened to stumble across this $200 beauty and because our Lowes had it on clearance and then it was the only one left so we took the display, we got it for $80. Added a little ceiling medallion and my super handy husband got it wired for me. I always get the best shoulder workouts on fixture changes, because I get the gruntwork of holding the thing up while he wires…maybe I need to learn so he can hold!

The giraffe lamp was from Homegoods. The gold framed art was $5 from the thrift store (I am thinking of making into a button art piece or getting a friend to print out a stencil for me and painting the glass). The large pallet art is from Willie’s cousin that was a shower gift (if you haven’t checked her out on Etsy, you need to). And my favorite part, the amazing DIY dreamcathers. The rest of the décor are just some of her favorite books, leftover flowers, knickknacks from great-grandparents, grandparents and photos. I want to add a large laundry basket under corner floating shelves, but for now, it’s perfect.

This girl better get ready because she is about to get a HUGE surprise!

Monday, February 27, 2017

DIY Doily Bohemian Dreamcatcher

Hope everyone had a fabulous Valentine’s Day! I took Hartley to get her nails painted for the very first time and she LOVED it. She got one hand pink and one hand red with sparkles on-top (of course). If you’ve been following my blog for a while I am superstitious and have to have my nails painted OPI Big Apple Red for Valentine’s Day, since my first date with Willie (13 years ago, oh my gosh) he picked me up from the nail salon and I had that color and we’ve been going strong since. Hartley was so proud and showed EVERYONE her nails at dinner, ahhh she melts my heart.

I’m ecstatic for this dreamcather project to be done because it means I’m that much closer to finishing Hartley’s big girl room! I’ve been procrastinating finishing her room because she is so good in her crib that I kind of want to leave her in there forever (can I?). And as a mom, I feel like leaving the crib is a HUGE milestone, that I may tear up for a bit.  This was the last major piece I wanted to finish before putting everything on the walls. Thanks to Pinterest I had some fabulous inspiration and gathered numerous ideas from different bloggers to create my unique take on the DIY Doily Bohemian Dream Catcher.

For mine, I incorporated store-bought doilies (you can use vintage ones if you can find at an antique market or thrift store, I even thought of using my grandmother’s handmade ones, but thought lightning would strike me if I did that!), flowers, lace, ribbon, and feathers (I re-used the feathers from my Thanksgiving tablescape). I also saw lots of people using wood as their top hanging piece, but I found this beautiful molding at the At Home store that I thought would make a better topper for the boho/vintage look I was going for. You also don’t need this piece if you are just creating a single dreamcathcer. Just follow the tutorial and stop when connecting the multiple embroidery hoops.

Here is what you will need:

  1. Wood/Molding Topper – mine was a little pricy at $24.99, but you can slash this cost using wood or twine
  2. Embroidery Hoops(I bought 2″ for the pink doilies but didn’t end up using, so for what I created I used 9-Inch and 12-Inch)
  3. Doilies (I found the 2” pink ones on clearance at Michaels for $2.99 for 4pk (I didn’t end up using these but have mini ones for a gift or something) and then ordered the 4pc- 9 Inch White Doilies ones for $12 – I have seen these at the thrift but I did not have luck on my recent trips)
  4. Torn fabric to wrap around hoop (you can use ribbon but that would get expensive, try using an old drop cloth, pillowcase, linen shirt or tablecloth) – I used a mix of cut ribbon and a dropcloth by cutting thin long pieces
  5. Yarn (thin for attaching doilies and thicker version for hanging pieces)
  6. Ribbon (go straight to the $1.99 bin of ribbon first) – Michaels has a fabulous selection
  7. Hot Glue Gun and Glue
  8. Artificial Flowers (optional)
  9. Feathers (optional)

Total Cost was about $65 (like I mentioned I went ALL OUT on mine, but you can make a version of this much cheaper but excluding items and/or using a different hanging method)

How to create:

  1. Start with wrapping all the embroidery loops with the torn fabric , glue the start and try using long enough pieces to make it fully around the loop, then glue the end.
  2. Once fully wrapped, start connecting the doilies using a thinner yarn on the edges. Just loop the yarn through the doily hole and knot on the edge. For the lower hanging dreamcatcher on the 9″ loop, I cut of .5″ around the edge to make it smaller then the one on-top of it.
  3. If you are doing a multiple version like I was, map out your placement before you add the embellishments. You will not want to add hanging embellishments for those that are connected at the top. For those that have the ability to get hanging ribbon, and lace…start adding by simply cutting a long enough piece to fold in half (not perfect) and attach by a loop-pull-through over the hoop on the bottom. Add the feathers by just using the ends of the twine or yarn to make tight knots. Add flowers by disconneting the stem and cutting off the hard green piece (you will know what this is once you have them) and attach to the loop with hot glue.
  4. Once all the dreamcatchers are completed, finish by connecting the individual ones to connect to one another in the design template you created. I was orginally going to use the small hot pink ones, but didn’t like them, so I just had to connect one.
  5. Finally connect the dreamcathers to your molding, I lucked out because there was already hangers on the back so I just connected the the three top dreamcathers with twine and knotting around the hangers, but you can wrap around, add nail hangers, or glue on.

Finally make your nail hole on the wall and voila! A beautiful boho chic dreamcather any girl would love. I love the way this turned out and super excited for her room to be done since it’s been such a pouring of love and sweat to make her room just as perfect as she is (cheesy…I know). Hope you enjoy creating one of your very own!

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