Our Boy Nursery (Before & After)

We moved into our home when I was 5 months pregnant with our first child. Naturally, his nursery was our top priority. While many of our rooms are decorated enough, I can confidently say that this room was finished. It's lasted through 2 boys in almost 6 years, and now is the room of our little girl. Due to a rough pregnancy, I never quite got the spur of energy to transform it into a girl space. However, a year later, we're getting there. I wanted to show you the boy nursery now before we say goodbye.

This is how the room looked when we moved in:

My dad loves fixing things up around the house, and he was beyond excited to have a grandchild. As a gift to the baby (and us), he flew out to paint the room. In the middle of a Minnesota January-bless his heart. Here he is in front of the pink that we uncovered when we stripped the wallpaper.

The photo doesn't do it justice, but the room seemed to glow in that intense pink! My parents worked hard, prepping and sanding and priming and painting, while I did things like this:

The paint (Sherwin Williams Watery) made ALL the difference. Long story short, we ordered baby furniture, a few pieces (dresser and rug) from the design firm I worked at, I made some art and hung many of the beautiful baby blankets I received, and the room came together.

Not overnight, but a few months after the baby arrived.

The nursery hasn't always looked exactly like this. Obviously, we used the bassinet for more than stuffed animals. At one point, we squeezed a toddler bed in when our boys shared the space.

I've spent many hours in this comfortable rocking chair, and I'm so grateful for its soft cushions at 2 am. 

I made this art, and (yes) it did take forever. I get a little crazy with scrapbook paper and Modge Podge, but it's so rewarding when my babies get excited to name the animals.

Aunt Lauren found this cute lamp at a thrift store for us.

My talented friend Melessa made the center blanket.

I cut up a nursery rhyme book for the pictures over the crib. I originally wanted to use a Dr. Seuss or Curious George book, but it was challenging to find pictures in them that stood alone as art. These nursery rhymes had great illustrations with the full rhyme right on the same page.

The room has a large closet, and that's where we stashed the changing table. Nothing pretty, but it works well. 

Fast forward to baby girl. We did make a few small accessory changes so the room wasn't all boy. The picture on the right is a special family poem. More to come on that when we redo the room...

My seamstress mother made these blankets, and several others. She was a bit excited for a girl.

It was enough to tide us over, but I'm ready for a change.
Bring on more pink!

---> Nicki

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All images by Nicki Hawes


Sunday Thoughts: Listening to a Seashell

Vintage shells prints found here

"...but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice." 1 Kings 19:12

In my church, I currently help with the Sunday School program for children. Their lessons are short and simple, but they often become such effective learning moments for me. Last week, the lesson was about recognizing the spirit of God, which is a really abstract concept for adults, let alone children, to grasp.

One object used to help teach this concept was a seashell. A child was chosen to place the seashell to their ear, and the room, usually full of small chatter, fell silent. Every child wanted a turn to hear something amazing and magical: the sound of the sea. 

At one point, the teacher encouraged some loud, distracting noise. This illustrated how impossible it was to hear the gentle whoosh, whoosh when among commotion. She told the class that we have to detach ourselves from noise to hear, or feel, the spirit of God too.

In the Old Testament, Elijah learns this important lesson. God was not in the great, strong wind, an earthquake, or a fire. Finally, Elijah finds Him, in a manner described by two words: still and small. I believe God is anxious to communicate with us, as we are His children. It's not likely that He will send thundering angels and earthshaking visions. Rather, He will patiently wait for us to slow down and be still.

The struggle for me is...how? When? From the moment I wake up I'm dealing with diapers and spills and to-do lists. In my SAHM life, there is always noise. However, if I try hard enough, I can find those slivers of quiet. Maybe I lock myself in the bathroom for 5 minutes. Maybe I turn off the car radio for a bit. Maybe, on a rare day, I actually wake up before anyone else. Maybe I find it in the minutes before I fall asleep. Maybe, I just mentally detach from noise, even if I physically can't.

If we truly intend to seek God, we will find Him. Those still moments can be some of the most beautiful and powerful spiritual experiences we have.

How about you? How do you find time to "listen to the ocean?"

Happy Sunday
---> Nicki

Sharing with > Motivational Mondays > Mommy Moments > Mama Moments Monday > Week's EndModest Mom > Jack of All Trades > Titus 2 Tuesday > Works for me Wednesday > Pour Your Heart Out > On Your Heart > Coffee Date > Finding Beauty > Saturday Sparks >

Image by Nicki Hawes

For more on my faith, visit here.


Pin Your Friday Favorite Link Party 7/24/14

pin your friday favorite link party

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Be a pal, check out last week's features and share them on Pinterest. If the post is not for you please consider sharing it on one of your community boards. Come on over to the Pin Your Friday Favorite pinboard and save yourself a couple clicks.

Clever, and realistic, Scrabble tile art from Home Made Interest

Home Is Where The Heart Is shared a honeymoon in the best city in America (I'm not biased or anything)

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Snapshots {The Thick of Summer 2014}

Nerf Wars
To the pool...

Lately, I've been...

Making: a paper popsicle garland with the kids.
Cooking: guacamole.
Reading: The Book of Mormon.
Watching: Fraiser reruns. Still makes me laugh.
Listening to: lots of "Why?"s from my 3-year-old.
Wanting: to be a better mother. Always. 
Needing: to de-clutter.
Wearing: my boho summer wardrobe.
Noticing: the crumbs on the floor, the dust on the blinds, and the fingerprints on the windows. 
Trying: to be athletic when my boys want to throw the baseball around.
Feeling: sensory overload.
Enjoying: conversations with my children, and the stage where they tell me everything.
Planning: our first school year. Kindergarten, here we come!
Wishing: the news wasn't so depressing.
Anticipating: grocery shopping with only one child in the fall (during preschool).

Have a great weekend! And don't forget to join the "Pin Your Friday Favorite" party :)
---> Nicki

Sharing with > A Mama Collective Currently > Dearest Love Currently > The Beetleshack Weekly Stills > The Nectar Collective Weekly Wishes > Fresh Mommy Hump Day Dump > The Jenny Evolution Wordless Wednesday > Finding Beauty > Serendipity is Sweet Friday Photo Journal >

All images by Nicki Hawes


Lavender & Peach First Birthday Party

A few weeks ago I mentioned my one-year-old, but I was rounding up a bit. This week she officially turns one, and we had a small family party for her.

I wanted to keep things fairly simple- a backyard gathering with good food and pretty decorations from around the house. 

As I was rounding up items, I came across a lot of lavender, purple, and peach supplies. We already had balloons, crepe paper, ribbons, garden flowers, napkins, and a few scarves to layer for a tablecloth; plus, it's prime season for nectarines and blueberries. I thought this color scheme was a fun twist for a girl instead of the traditional pink or purple.  

Since our party was smaller, we set out our "real" dishes, which made it feel more special. I made these chicken salad sandwiches, which have a sweet, dainty flavor. We kept the sides easy and kid-friendly. 

This is our first summer baby, and it was so great to have an outside party. The weather was perfect, and the garden supplied the lovely yarrow, flowering oregano, hostas, and hydrangeas (the show-stealer). 

It's my little tradition to hold off on giving my babies dessert until their first birthday cake. I baked her a mini cake (in a soup can) to make it extra special.

There was plenty of cake for everyone else. And, oooooh was it good! A whipped cream cheese frosting with fresh blueberries and nectarines and black raspberry ice cream provided the perfect summer refreshment. Recipe to come...

This party was so fun to put together, and it's always rewarding when guests enjoy your efforts. The highlight of the evening was watching the birthday girl blow out her own candle (after the big kids showed her how). 

One-year-olds are the best :). 

All images by Nicki Hawes
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