Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Whirlwind Part 1

Sunday night we (Aiden and I) made it home from a crazy whirlwind 2 weeks (approximately).  

It all started back on Sunday the 14th when my dad received a call that his mom was not doing well and would likely pass in the next 24-48 hours. Sure enough, Monday, the 15th, my grandma passed away around noon. Thank you all so much for your sweet condolences.  She had suffered with Alzheimer's for many, many years so we were honestly thrilled that she was finally able to have her memory back and be her normal self again. Of course we will miss her, but we are so happy she's been reunited with Grandpa!  I lay in bed that Monday night and just smiled as I tried to picture that sweet reunion :)

We spent the rest of that afternoon trying to get everything planned out to make it out to the funeral in Virginia.  My dad was hoping we'd leave Tuesday, the very next day, but the rest of us didn't think we could possibly be ready by then.  We were so grateful to friends in our ward and Andrew (cousin) for giving us Buddy Passes so that we could make the trip for half (maybe even less) than it would have normally cost to fly so last minute.

I spent all day Tuesday frantically doing laundry and packing for both Aiden and I.  It's crazy how much stuff you have to bring along when you have a kid!

Because we were flying out Wednesday the 17th, on Trent's birthday (also when Aiden turned 11 months), we had him open gifts Tuesday night.

Aiden was intrigued :)

Trent was shaking the box, trying to guess what was in it.  I love the look on Aiden's face :)

I felt terrible that Aiden and I were leaving on Trent's birthday :(  I was so grateful though that his parents are so close and were able to take him out to dinner that night.  

Because we had Buddy Passes we had to fly stand-by.  None of us (my parents, Jen, Amber, or Aiden and I) made it on the first flight so we had to wait around for the next flight.  We were so relieved when we all made it on.  Aiden only slept for about half an hour of the 4 hour flight and was otherwise super active, so it was a little exhausting, but at least he wasn't crying the whole time :)

We made it into home-sweet-home Virginia around midnight and took the Metro into home-sweet-home Vienna where my Aunt Karen picked us up.  We stayed with the Harrison's during our trip and loved our time there.  We have so many memories living across the street from them and miss them very much.

It was so nice that Aiden got to sleep in a crib and not a Pack-n-Play (although he does just fine in those!).  I love this picture of him!  I think he looks like Aunt Jennifer here - it's all in the eyes ;)

Thursday we slept in and took it easy.  Dad, my aunt Linda, and my aunt Karen were off making funeral arrangements so Jen, Amber, and I picked up Katy from school - James Madison High School, where we went to school!

You'll notice I got a lot of pictures of trees on this trip.  I miss them!  We are used to driving through them - totally different than Gilbert/Mesa, AZ.

We passed Louise Archer Elementary on our way to Madison.  This was our first elementary school, when we lived on Center Street.

Had to get some pictures with our beloved high school ;)

Jen's senior locker was somewhere around here..ha.

On our way out we drove by Flint Hill Elementary - our second elementary school when we moved to Old Hunt Road for fifth and sixth grade.

Driving down Garrett Street.

Our old neighborhood.  Our house is the second one (furthest down).

Jen, Amber, and I headed over to Tyson's Corner Mall so I could pick up a little outfit for Aiden for the funeral and then we had a family dinner back at the Harrison's (love Karen's cooking!).

That night we got to have a few friends over to meet Aiden.  First Amanda, a mutual friend of mine and Jill's.  Amanda is the reason I survived Spanish my senior year!  I was the only senior in there (Amanda was a junior) and she kept me sane and laughing..haha.  Anyway, she came by with some surprises for Aiden!  A whole bunch of new clothes!! I was floored!  All so cute!  THANK YOU AMANDA!!

We changed Aiden into the skeleton jammies right away :)

Aiden was kind of done with the pictures!

We hope to see you soon Amanda!

And then we got to visit with Colleen for a little bit!  We (Jen and I) have such fun memories with Colleen back in Seminary and high school.  We miss living so close to her!

Love this one of Aiden and Colleen (Colleen, I cropped myself out b/c I wasn't ready..haha).

Thanks for coming our way Colleen!  It was so great to catch up with you for a little bit :)

Friday we headed downtown, but got stopped for like 20 minutes (we were the first car) before we got on I-66 due to a motorcade. Apparently it was Obama headed to a rally in Fairfax (I looked it up Mom and sisters, but who knows if it's accurate).

Notice the flags on the front of the car.

We finally made it downtown and spent some time in the National Gallery of Art.  My mom is training to be a docent in an art gallery in Scottsdale so she was anxious to take a tour.  The rest of us did our own touring and had to move the car from 1-hour parking.

Love the architecture.

Amber and Aiden :)

I loved this sculpture of a pregnant woman.

Love this painting, Children on the Beach, by Mary Cassatt.  My mom has had a notebook with this print on the front for as long as I can remember and I've always loved it :)

We drove around D.C. while we waited for my mom to get done with her tour.

A bad shot of the White House.

The Washington Memorial.  Love all of the clouds!

The Jefferson Memorial - my favorite!

The Capitol.

The Kennedy Center - we were privileged to see many performances there!

And more trees :)

We stopped by the Lund's on the way back to the Harrison's and got to meet their puppy (I call any dog a puppy!), Maggie, whom they've had for a few years now, I believe.  Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures.  We miss seeing the Lund's so often and have such fun memories growing up with Jordan and Melissa (especially junior and senior year ;))!  Also, Trent and I got to hold our wedding reception in their beautiful home so it will always have a special place in our hearts :)

I'll stop there for now.  Bear with me - this is going to take several blog posts.  It was such a whirlwind!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Floating Ghost

This'll be short because I have a lot on my mind, but I finally got around to making my Halloween craft!  I made my own floating ghost :)  It didn't turn out exactly how I was hoping, but I thought you all may want to see anyway (if you haven't already seen this project floating around blogland and Pinterest..haha).

I followed Shatzi's tutorial exactly (HERE).  Make sure you really coat the cheesecloth with the cornstarch.  I don't think I did enough because mine wasn't completely stiff when I went to take it off my stand and it kind of collapsed.  I tried to spray it with some spray adhesive I had on hand to see if it would keep it's form better, but I don't know if that helped much. I was hoping my ghost would be a bit taller and thinner like Shatzi's. Because I didn't use enough starch, my ghost is all misshapen in the back and doesn't stand up on its own very well, which is why I propped it against the TV ;)  I think I'll just end up trashing it after Halloween and making a new one next year.  Luckily it's super easy :)  A friend made these ghosts with her kids and used fabric stiffener from Joann's, which I think I'll try next year!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

A Not-So-Fall Wreath

I don't know if you all have noticed, but it seems that I lean towards wreaths when I am in a crafting mood :)  I feel like a door is so bare when it doesn't have a wreath (or something) on it.  And it seems my door is always totally bare during the months of August and September.  Not good!  Luckily I found some inspiration when I happened on Dara's blog teach. craft. love.  I saw THESE wreaths of hers and had to have one for myself.  What a neat idea to put your house number on it.  I think it's especially helpful since we're in an apartment complex where every door is exactly the same (skip down to my picture if you don't want to read all the details :)).  So off to Hobby Lobby and Michael's we went (that's what Aiden and I were doing in this picture).

I picked up the flowers and wreath form from Hobby Lobby and I picked up some gray paint and floral wire from Michael's.  The only reason I went to both places was because I was looking for the numbers, but like Dara I did not have success.  For some reason no one sells numbers anymore, only letters.  Big bummer.  So after a week or so of all of my supplies sitting on our dining room table, I finally looked for wood numbers online and found SJA Wood Design.  Here you can choose the kind of wood, size of numbers, and font you want (I love fonts so that was fun for me!).  I went with 3" pine letters in Century Schoolbook.  I didn't realize the gray paint I chose was going to be such a close shade to our front door, which I always thought was a blue color..haha.  They must have similar undertones.

Anyway, I simply stuck the flowers through the wreath vines and they were snug enough that way.  I had to use a little floral wire to get the leaves to stay.  For the numbers, I hot glued some floral wire on the back of the numbers and wired it through.  Pretty easy!

I didn't get any pictures of the process like I usually do, but here's the finished product!  I think it turned out pretty well :)

So I ended up finishing this last Monday and then I realized it was October 1st and time to get out the Halloween/Fall decorations.  I seriously lose track of what month we're in because of the weather here in AZ.  It was still above 100 last week and this week it's finally supposed to get into the 90's.  That is not October weather in my book.  So now I made this Spring-y wreath and I can't even get it back out until like March (I have other wreaths/decor until then)!  I kept it up from Monday to Friday though because I wanted to admire it for at least a few days before I put it away :)

P.S. I'm working on a Halloween craft this week so come back soon!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Where's Aiden??

I meant to mention in Aiden's 10 month post that he loves to play Where's Aiden/Peek-a-boo.  I got a little video that I thought I'd let you all see :)