Christmas in Victoria

(This beautiful needle felted stocking was made for us by April!! April we love them!)

Spending Christmas in Victoria meant I could soak up every second of holiday while working away in my living room. Crafting this year was like a full time job! I started in November and worked away on knits and quilts almost every single day. It was perfect and so lovely. I was a bit in denial about taking down our tree a couple weeks ago, but we ripped the bandaid and now i’m happy to have that extra bit of space back. Still knitting though, as it is winter after all! I know it’s late, but Merry Christmas! All the gifts to come! – Jenna

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outside in

Although Owen still sleeps in our bed he does indeed have his own bedroom. As it does not get used very often it has been left alone for quite some time with empty walls and bare corners. However, with my nesting instinct in full gear I was feeling it was finally time to make this space special for Owen. The walls in his room are very tall and so I could never picture simply decorating them with paintings or photographs and new some kind of mural would be the way to go. Birch trees are the first thing that came to mind, I played a bit with wanting to add in some animals but finally decided so keep things simple. Birch trees are one of my favorite kind of trees and I was excited to be able to bring a little of the outdoors into our home.

To get started I googled birch tree sencils to get an idea of how I wanted my trees to look as I knew I had many options. I choose a few pictures I liked best and read a blog (which I now cannot find for the life of me!) about what steps to take to paint birch trees freehand and was blown away at how simple it was going to be to actually do this. I was feeling a bit nervous about painting freehand on our house walls, so it was great to see the process broken down into simple steps. I am a painter but painting on our actual walls was really freaking me out. These three easy steps however really calmed me down and reasured me that I could do this without it looking like a total disaster.

Materials Needed:

  • Roller brush (I used one 4 inches wide)
  • Different sized paint brushes to paint branches and make touch ups.
  • Paint and paint tray (Note about my paint color choice: In Owen’s bedroom three walls are of a light blue and one of a darker hue so I simply used the paint leftover from this to create my mural. Using the darker hue of blue paint to paint the trees, this allowed me to use the lighter blue paint to touch up any mistakes I made. This made the whole process incredibly forgiving).
  • Blue tape

Step One:

Tape off base boards and ceiling in areas you will be painting your trees. Using the roller brush make your tree truck from the bottom to the top of the wall, this could be a straight line or curved, up to you, I choose to do some straight trees and some curved. I also choose not to make all of the tree trucks the same size. To do this I would only press down on one side of the roller brush instead of pressing the entire brush down to the wall. I would then use the smaller sized paint brushes to make touch ups along the sides of the trucks.

Step Two:

Add branches using smaller sized paint brushes.

Step Three:

Using the same color as backgroud wall color (here I used the lighter blue paint) paint lines into the trees to create the look of bark on the trees. Once this step in complete you are all done! Step back and admire your work.

I am really happy with the final product of this project. His rooms finally feels alive and like a fun place to be. As for Owen, he definitely seems happy about this new addition to his room. He’s been pretending to climb the trees and talking about monkeys and owls playing around up in the tree tops. Now I just gotta get Papa to build him some wooden shelves for his books and toys and his rooms will be complete. It took me about a year to get around to this project so lets see how long it will take Papa.

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Owen’s garden

Spring is soon on its way and so I was inspired to start up a little garden with our little Kai that we could later transplant into the outside garden. Owen was so excited about this project, mostly because it involved water, but I’m sure once flowers begin to bloom he will be excited about that as well. We chose to plant sunflower seeds, daisy’s, and strawberries. So far the strawberries have not grown at all but somehow they keep soaking up all the water. Every morning when we go check the plants the two strawberry pots are completely dry but the daisy and sunflower pots are still moist and growing rapidly. Hopefully the strawberry seeds we got weren’t bad. I just love the feeling of springs arrival, the sweet sound of spring birds in the air, beautiful blossoms upon trees, and the return of warm summers air. All of this always gets me excited about getting my hands deep in to cool soil to plant a new years arrangement of flowers, herbs and veggies. Last year we did not have enough sun coming into our yard so most of the things we planted did not make it very long. This year however we are planning on re-modeling the back fence in hopes that this will let in more sunshine for our garden. I am really excited about the thoughts of having a large bright and delicious garden which we could eat from. Here’s hoping!

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Corners of our home

I wanted to share with you all a few corners of our home. Since the holidays we have had to do some re-arranging around the house to accommodate for some new things. First we had to make room for Owen’s new play kitchen. Thanks to my wonderful Mother, Owen has now been cooking up a storm. Thank you so much Grandma for this beautiful heirloom, I am sure it will stay in our family for generations to come.

Since we ended up moving Owen’s table to make room for his new kitchen we now had to find a new space for his table. I though next to the water jug could be nice since he could soon learn to get water for himself and its also closer to the dinning room table and so he can actually see us now when having his snack or lunch at his own table. Also for Christmas Owen got his very first sketch pad from his very own Nina. Thank you so much Nina for such a thoughtful and creative gift. We’ve been having a great time coloring in it with the new crayons you got him. He’s also really into stickers at the moment so we’ve been playing a lot with those in there too.

Lastly, we finally got some coat hooks up by the door. I’ve only taken photographs of Owen’s coat hooks but right above his is ours, which was actually a gift from my sister, whom spent Christmas here in our home with her two kids this year. Thank you so much sister for finally inspiring me to get Owen’s own little coat hooks up. So far he’s been having a great time taking his coast off to get ready to go out, as well as picking out which shoes he wants to wear but he’s not showing much interest in actually hanging up his coat or putting away his shoes once back inside. Something we will have to work on.

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