Love and Food in the Big D

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Everleigh Isabella Kelley - 18 Months and Counting

Dear Sweet Baby Bear,

It was probably mid-day on Tuesday when I realized it was your 18 month birthday.  I’m not sure how, but it really did seem to sneak up on me this time.  I think I say that every month.  I hate how the weeks are going by so fast but I have to say that I do love seeing you grow and change every single day.  Every day, or at least every other day, you surprise us with a new word, or a new trick or a new expression.  You’ve always been such a great baby, it just seems that now, with every day that goes by, you’re getting more FUN.  And ohhhhh, that little personality of yours!  You can already see your independence, how FEARLESS you are and will be (an adrenaline junkie in the making, just like your mom, as seen by my skydiving adventures HERE ;), and your sweet sensitive side (giving sweet baby bear kisses so generously at times).  You’re also so expressive, so talkative and so full of curiosity and wonder.  I love watching you figure things out.  Most of the time on your own, cause you wouldn’t have it any other way.  I love how persistent you are when you’re focused on a task, and I appreciate that you will ask for help when you need it (most of the time, unless of course frustration has gotten the best of you ;). That's your dad in you by the way.  ;)     

I also love how we’re really becoming buddies now.  We “talk” to each other.. or rather I talk and you stare intently at me really trying to understand what I’ve said…then either say..”Ok” when you’re ok with whatever I’ve proposed…or “No”, very matter-of-factly when you contest my ideas.  ;)  I love the way your face lights up and changes when you’re “telling me all about it” in your cute little “Everleigh talk”.  I also love how we can laugh HARD and play harder…chasing Macie around the house, bouncing up and down on my legs (giving me my daily workouts) or twirling around til we both feel the world spinning around us.  ;)  I love knowing your secret tickle spots... and hearing you squeal with delight when I dip you down to get Macie kisses.  :)  Your happiness is my happiness.  Every single day.  

I know we make Dad jealous sometimes.. especially when you whine or cry out for me when he’s in the room.  But I also know how much you love him.  I love the way you look at him and laugh with him.. and will sometimes choose to give him kisses over me, even when we've just spent the entire day together.  Dad likes to think it makes me jealous too… but I really DO love the way you both love each other so much.  I hereby give you permission to pick him over me (every so know, just to make him feel extra special ;).  

I can't thank my lucky stars enough for being chosen to be your mom.  You've made me happier than I ever thought I could be.  Happy 18 months sweet bear.  It's been one heck of an amazing ride so far!  :)  

Love, Mama Bear

This one cracks me up! ;)  ARRRRGGG.... 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Kelley Kitchen - Progress Photos

I think the biggest, most dramatic change that we've made to our house (oh...about two SECONDS!) after we moved in, was tackling our kitchen cabinets.  It was simply a color we absolutely couldn't live with.  The color of the cabinets, along with the faux painted walls was just too much to handle.  It was so incredibly hard to really appreciate the back splash or the really great granite counter tops with all the colors and textures going on in this space.  All the colors just seemed to blend together... in the worst possible way.  

Knowing that it would be easiest to tackle this project before we moved our furniture and appliances in, we spent DAYS prepping and sanding and gel staining...and gel staining some more before finally being able to call this project somewhat done.  We still have the overhead light fixture to contend with...and the "too-ornate-for-our-taste" fixture over the kitchen table...but for now, we're pretty damn proud of the outcome so far.  

Here's a little tour... (a very much LIVED in, sorry about the random mess), tour of our kitchen as it stands today.    

The AFTER.  
(Once again because I couldn't bear to start a new post with the BEFORE picture below)


As our project began (back in early September), we knew we couldn't tackle this project alone so we enlisted the help of one VERY CUTE, not yet 1 year old.  :)  

Quality Control Specialist Everleigh ;)

Amazing how much she's changed since this picture was taken!

The messy, long process of sanding and cleaning and sanding and cleaning.. 

I believe this was probably coat 1 of 2 or 3 gel stains we did.  

Probably the same here.  Coat 1 of 2 that we did of the gel stain.  

Final product.  :)