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Typically the joke’s on me when I attempt to sew “The 20-minute project!”
20 minutes?
I have that.
Oh wait, you mean they lied?

Usually the project is a dress or something…
I can’t pick out a dress to wear in 20 minutes,
let alone make one.
So yeah, that’s usually how it goes for me.

 

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HOWEVER! I am here to tell you that this project really did take very little time!
My sister-in-law Shannon’s birthday was yesterday.
I decided I wanted to make this as a gift for her.
When?
Umm, yesterday morning.
(It’s no secret I am usually behind in life)
So, I went out to the store around 11,
and completed it start to finish during nap time!
It took me about 2 hours.
Which, maybe somebody else could make this in 20 minutes,
but I’m going to try and give you a more realistic estimate.
I could just be slow,
but hey – at least I’m honest.

I first got the idea from my friend, Steph, who made this as a gift for her sister who was in art school.
Shannon is also in art school, so I figured I had a winner.
I found the tutorial over at Prudent Baby.
I customized it to fit pens and pencils instead of crayons,
so I used rectangles that were 9”x 18”.

I got some fancy art pens to go inside…

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And of course some fun owl ribbon.
I sewed two pieces of ribbon together
(wrong sides facing)
so that there were owls on both sides ,
regardless of how the ribbon was laying.

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Interfacing.
It made the roll much sturdier.
Although, I accidentally Heat n Bonded my ironing board…

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The inside…

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The outside…

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Stuffed with pens and pencils…

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All wrapped up and ready to be gifted!

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Happy Birthday to the lovely Shannon!
May your 20th year be full of all things lovely and exciting 🙂

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Then:

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Now:

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How is it even possible?
Last night I slipped into her room and just watched her sleep.
I could not believe how much she has changed in only 365 days.
She was a tiny little bean in her crib a year ago.
(and there was very little sleep going on)
Now she’s a one-year-old,
which means she can fall asleep in any position possible,
and look quite funny while doing so.
It’s almost like she has narcolepsy and just falls over and passes out
(if I had to judge from her chosen slumber poses ha.)

She talks.
She walks (sorta).
She laughs (and makes us laugh).
She gives hugs and kisses.
She has many “tricks.”
She says “hi” a million times a day to anyone within earshot.
She is in every way her own little person.
And we could not be more in awe at how much we love her.
Who knew I could be the mothering type? 🙂

Happy birthday, dearest girl.
God knew how much we needed you.
Here’s to many more birthdays with you.

Tomorrow my baby turns one.
Sunday was her party,
seeing as Thursday is not a very good party day.
Here are some pics of the fun.

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And now for my party sources
(seeing as almost nothing was an original idea):

Garland Idea
Iced Coffee with Coffee Ice Cubes
Hanging Fans Inspiration
Cupcakes in a Jar using this cake
Smoky Beef Tacos (though sadly I do not have pics)

Special thanks to:
my mom. 
I could not have pulled this party off without her.  From using her house to keeping Julia from killing herself, my mom was (and is) my hero.

my dad.
he took about as much interest in this party as he would have in any of his own.  he was mowing the lawn 2 hours before everyone arrived, even though I told him he didn’t need to.  and when Mom sent him to cut flowers for the mason jars, he did a pretty spectacular job. 🙂
And even though he was unsuccessful in hunting down a baby pool, we still had one grand party.  😉

michelle.
she came over early and basically prepped all the cake ingredients so we could layer them.  she also brought guacamole, which everyone understands is essential to any party.  she is the very best SIL I could ask for.

cyndi.
brought food AND helped replenish all the food as it got eaten. 

meg.
she not only helped me make decorations, she took several of the photos above so I could enjoy the party.  she also helped me get coffee out of my brand new white dress. 🙂

and to everyone else.
a party is not a party without friends to attend it. 🙂
thank you to all our family and friends who came and blessed Julia on her 1st birthday.  We are so grateful for each one of you!

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Birthday Party Madness.

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Sewn Garland

Easiest thing ever.
And quite addicting to be honest. 
I used paper instead of felt.

Special thanks to Meg who came over yesterday to help make decorations.
T-3 Days!
I can hardly believe my baby is almost one.

1st Birthday parties really are more for the parents than the kid…

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So even though she has no idea what pinwheels and garland are,
I still plan to thoroughly enjoy myself.
At her party.

Because I can’t leave these cupcakes alone.
They are just too good.
So I made them into a birthday cake.

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Happy Birthday to the best mother-in-law a girl could ask for!
Today – we celebrate.

Where do I even begin?
There are hardly words.

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We had no idea what our lives were missing until this girl came along.
I love her personality.  So spunky and joyful.
I love her eyes.  They are her daddy’s, and they are magnificent.
I love how much she smiles, which is almost constantly.
I love how when I’m frustrated with her, I pick her up and she smiles and reaches out to touch my face, almost as if she’s saying, “Silly mommy…don’t be angry with me…see? I’m adorable.”
I love her laugh.
I love how she will spend hours (literally) entertaining herself by blowing raspberries.
I love how she teaches me about God in everything that she does.  Everything.
I love watching her learn new things, each and every day.
I love how much I love her, because I know it’s a love that God put there.  I never dreamed I could love such a little person so much.  I’m so glad God didn’t wait for me to decide that I was ready.  I don’t know if I ever would have decided I was.  And oh how much joy I’d be missing.

We love you girlie.  Can’t believe you’re already half a year old. 
Don’t grow up too fast. 
Happy half birthday. 

Dearest Daddy,

For your birthday, I got you something special.
ME!!!

Just kidding.
Only Mom would try and pull that stunt.
I actually get real presents for you.
How? you ask

I sent mom on an errand for me with specific instructions.

Find the Fox in the Socks.
(I was expecting a real fox, in real socks.  But I suppose this will have to do.)

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Because, you see, whatever I tell Mom to do, she does. DSC09357

I’ve been working on my penmanship for quite some time now, just so I could write your birthday card. DSC09358

I inspected every inch of this book, and have concluded that it is sound.
It even tastes great.

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I really hope you like it… DSC09382

Because we all know…this was really one of those gifts that you buy for yourself under the guise of a gift for someone else.
Translation: it’s mine. DSC09387

Happy Birthday!!!!!!

Love,
Julia

Yesterday, May 20th, was Traci’s 30th Birthday!  And to celebrate Meg, Kelli and JPS threw a surprise dinner party :)  We were very honored to attend.  Everything was absolutely beautiful.  Good food, good friends, good memories and good laughs.

The beautiful table.  It looked like something out of a magazine!

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Lucy and Grandpa

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The guest of honor + Rick.  I am just now realizing that they match…

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And here we have Reenie and Mick trying to communicate to someone over their technological devices.  iPhones??  Blackberries??  I don’t know.  And I forget who they were talking to (Col and Alyce??) – but it was funny.

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Prater Iced Tea.  Nothing like it.

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And there were babies.  Cute cute babies.

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And here is Miss Drama Queen herself.  Sitting in the birthday chair.

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On the menu:
Spinach, Strawberry Avocado Salad
Caesar Salad
Steak with a Balsamic Glaze
Broiled Potatoes
Sister Somebodyother Rolls (Reenie thinks maybe Sister Schubert?)
Chocolate Cake

Sorry…all I got pictures of were the salads…

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Rick and Lucy on the trampoline.  Reenie, Michelle and I had our suspicions that, while Lucy loved the trampoline, Rick was using Lucy as an excuse to go jump on it.

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Birthday cake time.  One cake had a 3 on it, the other a 0.  And yes, there were 30 candles.

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And after cake, we all sat around telling Traci stories.  Some were reminiscent, others embarrassing, yet all were either hilarious or encouraging.  My favorite cannot be posted here. 🙂

Happy Birthday, T!  Thanks for being such a dear friend to so many of us!  We love you!!

Collective Reminiscings

The Smittys

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