Monday, May 16, 2016

Knock Knock - Who's There? Barn Door!

Hey guys!  I'm here today to share with you our new barn door!  If you follow me over on IG, then you know by now that I won this amazing barn door by entering a contest hosted by A House and A Dog.  I remember showing Jon my Instagram entry and telling him about how much I wanted to win this door - something I don't normally do when entering online contests.

I wanted this thing and I wanted it baaaaaad!

A few days later, while checking out at Home Depot, of all places, I happened to glance down at my phone and saw lots of messages containing the word "congrats."

  Oh, my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh!!  Had I won the door?!  

We hightailed it out of there, don't worry - we paid first ;), I checked my messages and wouldn't you know it, I won the barn door!  It felt like Christmas all over again!  Oh. EM. Geeeeeeeee!  I was pumped.  Jon was pumped...and the kids...well, I may have scared them with my over abundance of joy.

Anyhoo, thanks to Rustica Hardware and A House and A Dog, we are now proud owners of this lovely barn door!

Rustica Hardware Barn Door -

Now I just need to figure out if I want a design in the bottom portion, an "X" or a "Z," and I need to research what kind of handle we should get.

 Hmm...decisions, decisions.

Suggestions?  What do you think?


Winning this piece of happiness has also made me home in on our entryway.

That lonely light fixture, the blank wall, the lack of decor...  Yeah, I think we need to add a bit more pizzazz to the area.

So, stay tuned for an entryway'll be done by 2025, I'm sure of it!  ;)

Rustica Hardware Barn Door -

In the meantime, though, let's just sit here and stare and talk about how pretty that door is...mmmkay...

I'll be sitting right here...staring...just staring...


I'm in love...

Rustica Hardware Barn Door -

Oh and just for fun, here's what it looked like before the install.  Check out my fun sunburst cedar shim mirror!  Guess I'll need to find a new place for that diy project!  

Sunburst Mirror -

...aaaaaaaaaand back to the door...


Rustica Hardware Barn Door -

Thanks for stopping by today, friends!  If you need me, you'll know where to look.  ;)

Marie :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Henry turns 5.

This past Saturday, our little Henry turned five.

Our first born, our pride and joy, our sweet little 8 lb 6 oz bundle of joy is five...FIVE.

You guys, I have so many mixed emotions about this, but it is what it is and I tried my very best to not become the crazy/sad/happy/emotional mom last Saturday.  It was tough.

We tried for over a year to get pregnant with our little guy - lots of emotions, medication and a blighted ovum (another story for another day), but in late August of 2010, we found out we were pregnant and Jon and I were over the moon excited!

The pregnancy, labor and delivery were all a dream.  I'd do it all over again in a heartbeat.

On May 7, 2011, the best thing that had ever happened to us had occurred.  Our little Henry had arrived and boy-oh-boy, he was, and still is, amazing.  Sure, becoming a mother for the first time had its challenges, but my goodness, I wouldn't trade it for anything...ANYTHING in this world.


My Henry,

I'm so proud of you.

You're a dream of a little boy and I'm so happy I get to be your Mom.

You have the kindest heart, the best hugs and the silliest jokes - although, most jokes usually revolve around poops and toots.

I can honestly say that I know that you're going to grow up to become a phenomenal man.  You're already learning that girls go first, you hold doors open for strangers and I'm sure you'll woe somebody someday with your pancake makin' skills.

But let's not jump that far ahead, yet.  Okay?  Please take your time growing.  I'm not finished snuggling with you yet and Eliza needs her playmate to stay young and busy.

Speaking of which, you're amazing with, "Ziza" as you often call her, and you're always trying to help her.  You encourage her and she encourages you.  Daddy and I are beyond thrilled that the two of you are together in this big ol' world.  We're so happy the two of have each other day-in and day-out.  You can be the best of friends and sure, at times you bicker, but it never lasts long and the two of you are always quick to forgive and back to being the best of friends.

Gosh you love her.

We call you our little, "Project Manager."  You're always telling us to build something.  Most times you're involved, but there are times when you watch over our shoulder and tell us, "good job" or "NO!  You're not doing it right!"  We try our best, baby boy...we try our best...

It seems as though your most common question is, "How?"  You're so intrigued with how things work and we must always provide an answer.  You always try your darndest to work out a problem in your head.

Your solution?  "Mom, I know!  We need scissors, cardboard and some tape!"

Whenever I go to the grocery store I always try to buy tape.  You looooove tape.  We've built so many things out of tape and cardboard.  We've built a huge cardboard RV equipped with a table, windshield wipers, a window, headlights and a steering wheel.  Still, you wanted more.  We've built cardboard slides, cardboard marble runs, a huge hardboard mailbox (including one that involved the shop vac), and even a cardboard car wash.  Cardboard for days!  Never in a million years would I have thought that I'd be building so many things out of cardboard, but Henry, you make it so fun!

You love playing with your sister, building forts out of the couch cushions, Legos, Paw Patrol, PJ Masks, driving the Barbie Car, funny jokes, a good magic trick, putting underwear on your head and socks on your hands and dancing naked while your little sister does the same.  You guys are nuts and Daddy and I LOVE it!  You love pancakes, bacon, sausage, the crunchy tips of asparagus.  You love chocolate milk shakes, chocolate doughnuts, chocolate steamers, chocolate candy...anything and everything chocolate.  You'll do anything for chocolate!

My hunny bunny, you're full of love.  So much love.  You love your sister, Mom and Dad, both sets of grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles and love them all so very much.  You get along with everyone so well.  You're gentle and soft.  You always have been and I know, I know you always will be.

You're the best little boy.  You're the sweetest little boy.  You're my favorite little boy.

You're my beating heart.

Oh, how are you five already?  Gone are the infant and toddler days.  You are ending your pre-schooler days, and while I'm not all...I must say that I'm anxiously excited for our next chapter together.  The chapter you'll be entering as a school-aged boy.  Oh my Henry, you have so much to offer and I can't wait for the the world to see it.  You'll move mountains...I know you will.

I love you so much it hurts.

To the moon and back, the moon and back.

Forever and always,


Sunday, May 1, 2016

The Monthly Meet Up

Happy first day of May, everyone!  I'm back from a week long blogging hiatus and I must say it feels good to be back on the ol' blog again.  :)

As many of my fellow bloggers may know by now about two weeks ago one of our favorite bloggers had some issues regarding her blog content and privacy being comprised.

It pretty much freaked me out and I've since been very quiet on this bloggity blog of mine as well as over on Instagram.

So, here I am with a few new plans for my blog on this month's edition of The Monthly Meet Up.

This month... blog will likely see more diy/home decor posts and less of the kiddos.  I'm still hoping to provide updates on our daily lives somehow on here.  I'm trying to figure out how to incorporate our day-to-day into this little space of mine without jeopardizing my comfort level.

After all, this Saturday will be Henry's fifth birthday and how do I not blog about that - right?  It's a milestone!  I've already not blogged about his Kindergarten registration and my blog feels a little sad because I didn't post anything about it.

Does anyone want to start a weekly, "Real Life" type of link up?

Perhaps once a week would work perfectly?



... I'll be starting a weekly home tour in the next couple of weeks similar to that of the amazing, Lindsay over at Lindsay's Sweet World.  Seriously, check out her house, it's amazing!  

I figured this would be a great opportunity to show all ya'll more of my home as well as get some new content up on my "Home Tour" page.


...I'm going to attempt to blog 2-3 times a week in hopes to place myself on an intentional schedule.

We'll see how that'll go - but by golly, I'm going to try!


Have you changed the way you're blogging these last couple weeks?  Please, do tell.  :)

Thanks for stopping by, guys!

Marie :)

Tuesday, April 19, 2016


Hey guys!  I hope you had a beautiful weekend.  Ours was busy, fun, and not to mention - exciting!

See this photo right here?

This is the official picture of spring at our house and it happened last Thursday!

This is a picture of our lift and dock being put in the water, which means "lake time" has officially commenced!


Okay, so now back to the rest of the weekend!

On Friday afternoon the kids and I met up with another Mommy and her little boy, Reid, who we've known since he was 18 months or so, to celebrate his 5th birthday.  The awesome Sara, from The Hayes Homestead, and her adorable kiddos were also there to whoop it up!

We met up at Pizza Hut for pizza (obviously) followed by super hero cupcakes and matching rings!

Great start to the weekend if you ask me.

After meeting up with some friends we headed to my sister's house for our nephew's 5th birthday celebration!  Oh yeah!  Two parties in one day - which also meant two different cakes in one day!


Henry and his big cousin, Christian, (who's only about one month older ;) ) have been the best of friends since birth and I can't believe they're both five this year...

My-oh-my does time fly...

After some delicious ice cream cake we headed outside to burn off some energy.

Lucky for us, Captain America, the goalie, showed up.

The next morning ended up being absolutely beautiful (a complete 180 from the weekend before) and we had another birthday party to attend.  We had a little time to burn before the party began so we ventured over to the cutest little town in the middle of our state, Frankenmuth.  I grew up relatively close to this area and it's still fun to go and visit every so often.  

Have you ever heard of Bronner's Christmas Wonderland, The World's Largest Christmas Store (located in Frankenmuth)?  If not, it's a sight to be seen and you should definitely add it to your travel bucket list!

Oh and don't even get me started on Eliza's shoes.  We bought them for Disney and as fun and cute as she is when she wears these shoes, I'm over them - especially when I have a cute little outfit for her to wear, but she demands on wearing these shoes.

Grow out of them already...  Sheesh...

We walked around for a bit and kept ourselves entertained...and if you know me at all, you know I'm easily entertained.

Oh my gosh, her little face...

Oooooh and look at these cute "hamburger" chocolates.  I may have to attempt these.

While walking around the downtown Jon and I spotted an adorable coffee shop and decided caffeine was in order.  We happened to find this cute little play area under the steps for the kids to play in...isn't it awesome?!

Shouldn't all restaurants have something like this?

Where do I sign a petition?

Birthday party time!

My brother and sister-in-law threw a dinosaur themed birthday party their son, Jack, and I must say, it was on point.

Check out this cake her sister made!

...and this watermelon dinosaur!

Cute, right!

After filling our bellies with yummy food, we then played for a bit while we waited for everyone to finish up eating.

Time to be adorable...

Cake time!  ....aaaaaaand a photo bomber....

After some delicious cake and opening of presents, Jon and I packed up the kiddos and decided to go out to dinner...yeah, we're pigs.  Seriously.  I feel like we're always eating.

We drove for about an hour to one of our favorite Middle Eastern restaurants in Flint, yes, Flint...

Trust me, the food is sooooo good and we always end up eating waaaay too much - it's pretty much the best food EVER!

After dinner we did our usual routine of putting the kids in their pajamas and brushing their teeth in the restaurant parking lot before our long ride home.

On Sunday I attended a painting party with some of the best company ever, one of which was my girl, Sara.

I was, as usual, probably too loud and overly excited to be amongst other woman for three uninterrupted hours.

They put up with me.  They have to.  I know where they live...





This is me pretending to be awesome...

Look at that focus...that concentration...

...........aaaaaand this is what really went down.

I ended up a little frustrated at one point and not knowing what to do, so I gave in to a cookie.

Anyone else out there eat their feelings?

FYI - the sign turned out (whew), in fact all the signs were fabulous and I can't wait for our next painting par-tay!

After three hours of eating cookies painting I returned home and Jon asked if he could go for his first ski ride of the season, you know because it was snowing last weekend and now it wasn't.  I mean, who cares that the water was probably something like 40 degrees, but whatevs, I was an awesome wife-y and took that man for a ski ride!

Marie for the win!

The kids were excited to watch Daddy!

Well, Eliza couldn't really see at first, but no worries, she re-positioned her hat!

Happy Husband, right here, folks.

It was the perfect ending to a busy weekend and a perfect beginning to a long week!

Happy sunny days, friends!

Marie :)

I'm linking up with BLoveBoston for her Weekending Link Up Partaaaaay

Friday, April 15, 2016

Five on Friday!

Happy Fri-YAY, friendship!  We have a super duper busy Friday over here, so I thought I'd share with all of you some quick snippets of real life with the kiddos.

Blurry and un-edited. ;)


Henry's been wanting me to take pictures of him next to all the presents he wants for his upcoming birthday.  This is one of several pictures so far.  I think he's up to, oh-I-don't-know, something like $500 bucks worth of toys/presents. that...I don't think so, my cute little man...


Girlfriend has been sleeping like a teenager.

She's been going to bed at her usual time, but there's been a few times that she's slept in until 10:30!  Apparently she's exhausted, so I let her sleep.

Some may say, oh how lucky - but it actually puts us behind on getting out of the house to do anything AND that means a nap/"quiet time" is a no-go.  Yikes!

Oh well.  We all need our beauty sleep, right?

Gosh, I love her and all that hair so very much...


Speaking of hair...

(I had to crop this image due to raisins being all over the floor.  I'm telling you this to be honest, but if you would've seen it, I'm sure you would've definitely thought to yourself, "Are those raisins or droppings of poop...?  Man, Marie's house is dirty..."  

#keepinitreal  #sortof



Henry's been sounding out letters and attempting to sound out words!!!

He was so excited and proud that he took this awesome selfie!


This has been happening a lot over here.  

Henry figured out how to hook up and pull Eliza in the wagon behind the Barbie car.

These two think it's hilarious...and I'm sure it's completely safe (insert wide-eyed emoji)...

That's it for me/us for this Five on Friday.  I'm off to go do a million things!  Oh and thanks for stopping by!

Have a great Friday, friends!

Marie :)

I'm linking up with AprilNatasha, and Christina for the Five on Friday link-up Paaaaarty!
I'm linking up with A Little Bit of EverythingMomfessionals, and Grace and Love for my Friday Favorites!
I'm linking up with September Farm and The Farmer's Wife for the Oh Hey Friday linky party!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Confessional Thursday

It's Confessional Thursday!

I confess...


...I'm the world's biggest pushover.

Seriously, I don't like calling the shots when it comes to making decisions.

It makes me uncomfortable.

__________ go along with being a pushover - I don't like confrontation.

Years ago I used to work at a coffee shop and there were more times than I'd like to admit that I'd take blame if the order was wrong just so I wouldn't have to tell a fellow employee they had mixed up the orders.

I never wanted to hurt their feelings.

I realized that they were essentially wasting product, but I just couldn't bring myself to tell them they were wrong, so I'd act all ditzy and take one for the team.

I still do this on occasion in certain's something I need to work on.  Seriously, I'd rather act ditzy than be honest - what?!  It's a problem.  Given, I realize I'm not always right and I know that.  I just never want anyone to think I'm intentionally being bossy or mean...or attempting to take charge.  Even though I know that it's better to say something than not.


...on the flip side, I'm loud - like I should have my ears checked loud - and some people would probably call my obnoxious, but at least I know it!  LOL!

I just get waaaaay too excited when talking to people.

  I'm kind of like Buddy the Elf...all the time.

__________ kids have been playing alone in the other room for the last 45 minutes...


...I found a tiny little Hershey's chocolate and an old Caramel-filled Cadbury Egg in the bottom of my purse yesterday and I secretly ate both of them.

It was awesome.


...I don't like any kind of tomato-based sauce.  So I don't like sauce on my pizza, I don't care for spaghetti or lasagna...and I'm not a fan of salsa.  I know, I'm weird.  Although, I have made huge strides and am finally opening up to little pieces of tomatoes in my guac and salads.

Baby steps...


Bam!  Confessions done!  Whew.  I can breathe again!

Marie ;)

I'm linking up with the amazing Jessica over at The Newly.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016


It's Wednesday, I'm finally, finally getting up a blog post about last weekend, the sun is shining and spring is officially in the forecast!

You guys, the snow has melted and I think it's done for good this time.

I love me some seasons and I love me some snow.

But this.


This was too much.  I'm over it.  It's tooootally not me, winter - it's you.  Yes, yes - you're beautiful and all, but we're over!

Of course this beautiful snow fell right before we had to leave to go to Ann Arbor for a night last Saturday.  Ann Arbor is about an hour and a half away, so you know - snow and expressways are always fun here in the mitten.  Most people decide to drive as if there's nothing wrong with the roads and it always makes me soooo nervous.  Luckily, the roads were fine and the views were gorgeous...but still - I'm over you, winter/spring...whatever you are.  Just stop snowing!  

P.S.  Jon was driving when I took this photo.

Why were we in Ann Arbor for the day/night, you ask?  Well, I went ahead and signed myself up for a 5k.  It's a race that I've been wanting to do for a few years now and I figured it'd keep me motivated with my running.

We had to pick up my bib and t-shirt inside the Crisler Center (the arena where the Wolverines play basketball).  The kids thought it was pretty cool, but I'd say it was a tie between seeing the arena and riding the escalators.  ;)

After picking up some running essentials, we headed into the downtown for a little window shopping.

One place we stopped at was a tea room/store.

Why didn't I buy this mug?!  

Why-oh-why didn't I buy it?

It screams, "Marie" - and the gold it!  I may have to order it online...

The kids and I waited for Jon to pick up some caffeine and then we headed over to the children's museum.  

You guys, Henry woke up and jumped in our bed on Saturday morning all dressed and ready to go play with the "ball machine" at the museum - it's always been his favorite since he was itty bitty.  We couldn't get around and leave fast enough.

Boyfriend was oh-so-ready to go!

He was aaaaaaaall business once we arrived.  

This is the best picture I could get of him because he was moving around so fast!

Little Miss. Eliza enjoyed a little bit of everything...

Henry decided to dress up.

You guys, he NEVER does this at museums.  We've been coming to this particular museum a few times a year since he was 19 months old.  Never once has he put on this cute fireman costume.  But it finally happened and I silently stalked him to get a picture.  I figured if I were spotted, he'd get upset and throw off his hat.  I could see it all going down in my head...

So I stalked my little heart away...

Then this happened...

He saw me.


He smiled.

I smiled.

Then he smiled some more and I was able to capture all the adorable-ness!

Oh my heart...

After my heart filled up with love, we decided to fill up
 our stomachs with food, but not without heading to another cute little store first...

Cute right?

Apparently, we were too hungry to take a picture at dinner, but I was able to get a picture of the kids eating their first eclairs.  Oh man, were they happy!

After dessert we headed over to the University of Michigan's Women's Water Polo game? Match? Meet?  I really should google that.  

We thought it'd be fun to take the kids to something completely different.  Something they'd never watched before.

Michigan played Harvard and I must say, it was exciting to watch.  There was even a Michigan band AND one of the Michigan players waved at Henry!

Michigan won 10-5!  Woo-Hoo!

Henry loved it!  He would smile, clap and cheer whenever a point was made.  

Oh my gosh, it was the cutest thing ever.

Oh and at one point, they were throwing out tshirts to people who got up and danced.  I put my children to work and told them to start dancing.

It worked!  Muhahahaha!

They continued to dance...

Just my size! *wink*

On Sunday morning it was time for my race and oh my gosh - it was sooooo cold!  Jon's parents came out to watch and not only did they wake up super early to head over to Ann Arbor, but they had to sit there in the cold.  Mad props to the in-laws!  

Around 8 a.m. I had to walk over to the start line and it was freeeeezing.  I believe the temperature was somewhere in the 20's and there was some wind along with a few flurries here and there.  Brrrrrrr.........

In some ways I couldn't wait to start running because I knew my body would eventually thaw out.


The coolest thing about this race was that everyone was able to finish on the Michigan 50 yard line!  So cool!  

As I was approaching the stadium, I could hear the announcer saying people's names, so I turned down my music on my phone...just in case...but they never did say my well, maybe next year!  ;)

At one point the course has you run through the stadium tunnel.  As I was running through the tunnel to come out on the field the Michigan fight song was blasting and it totally gave me that extra umph that I needed to finish the race!

It was the coolest thing EVER!

At the finish line you could jump up to touch the Michigan banner - which I tried, but I couldn't reach and I was actually holding my phone the entire time, so I didn't want to drop it...lame, I know.

But I still jumped and I got this pretty sweet photo...that I had to pay for...but still...totally worth it!

After the race, Grandpa George and Grandma Terri took all of us out to breakfast to a place Jon and I have always wanted to eat at and it was soooooo good!  

Look at these awesome baskets the waiters brought out for the kids while we waited for our food.  

Hello entertainment!

After a delicious breakfast we headed home and these two were out almost immediately and for the entire ride.  My babies were exhausted and so was their Mama.  I think I ended up having three coffees on was necessary to stay awake!

It was a great weekend and another busy one is fast approaching.  I'll attempt to blog about it sooner this time.  LOL!  ;)

The worst blogger ever,

Marie :)  Haha

I'm linking up with BLovedBoston.