Loosing a Pet

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This is an old post that I never published.  My sweet guy will have been gone for 2 years in August.  I wanted to share these wonderful memories, even though these words are not recent words.

We recently lost one of our precious dogs!  Brody was my first baby and I can’t explain the pain I feel over his loss.  He was just a week shy of being 10 years old.  He ate something he should’t have and we lost him very suddenly.  Making the decision to put him down was definitely heart reaching and difficult.  I have gone through so many emotions over the last month.  I have felt grief, guilt, anger and a lot of sadness.  I still call his name at times or wonder where he is sleeping in the house.  These habits have been so hard because it is a reminder of him always being near by.

Brody was definitely special to all 4 of us, but he was my baby for the last 9 years.  He provided the unconditional love that I desperately needed at some of the most difficult times in my life.  He was my protector in so many ways.  I am forever grateful that God allowed him to be with me for 9 years.  Over those 9 years he taught me so much.  He taught me how to care and love.

Brody was a Beagle and that came with a lot of quirks! He loved food, was a little stubborn and had a nose that got him into a lot of trouble.  We have since realized how much we miss his funny quirks.  He never did anything on our time, it was always on his time.  As infuriating as it felt at times, it was his personality and I can’t tell you how much I miss calling him in from the backyard and watching him take his sweet time making his way in.

I have cried over loosing my little guy everyday since he’s been gone.  I am glad he is out of pain and in a better place but for now my heart hurts and I miss him badly.

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We laid Brody to rest in our backyard.

I love you Brody and will always miss you!

Anniversaries

Four years!?!  I can’t believe it’s been four years.  My title is anniversaries because today I celebrate two anniversaries.  I celebrate the amazing love my husband and I got to share and confirm four years ago, but I also get to celebrate the day I became a Smom to my two sweet kiddos.  What a blessed day it was!

In four years, a lot has changed and a lot hasn’t.  My life changed dramatically all at once.

The first thing was giving up a career that I had spend 14 years in, I started in the industry when I was 15.  I loved it, but my husband and I decided to make the priority for me to be home with the kids.  I am sure glad we made that move, although it has not always been easy, it feels like a sacrifice that is worth it (maybe I’ll write a post to explain what I mean another time).  This threw me in head first and although there were days I cried, days I didn’t think I could do it and days I loved it, I look back now and see the enormous growth in my spiritual life with God, my relationship with my kids and the growth in myself.

The second thing to change was sharing my life with three others.  Having quiet time seemed to be different.  Things like getting up in the morning(which if you know me at all isn’t a easy task) to make lunches, breakfast and get everyone off to school and work.  I was so used to just getting myself up and out the door.  And one of the biggest…LAUNDRY! 🙂

One of the hardest things was finding my place in a family that existed way before me being introduced. I knew I was loved, but when it came to sitting down to watch t.v. my place wasn’t the same as when my husband and I were dating, it seemed to be on the other side of the couch because the kids were used to having their Dad to themselves. This took adjustment and it took communication with my husband and now we have a new normal.

I hope you read my blog for more of our ever changing story.  Not because I am an expert, not because our story is unique, but because all you Smom’s out there should know…you AREN’T alone!

Today is a day of such JOY, a day my life changed for the better.  A day that the Lord gave me that man I desperately desired and the kids that have made me whole.  I love these three people more than I could ever express, and though I know things are never perfect, I am glad these are the three are the people I will laugh, cry, smile and love for the rest of my life!

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Thank you Lord for the blessings you bestowed upon me four years ago!

 

Smom?! What’s a Smom?

Smom? What’s a Smom?  I get this question often.  My stepkids call me Smom.  My husband and I went on our honeymoon and my stepdaughter wrote us a note when we got home and she wrote it “s.mom” in that sweet note that told me how excited she was to have a new “s.mom”.  From there they started calling me Smom.

Yes ,it seems silly to write a blog about this, but this is something special to me.   I am very aware I am not their Mother and would never want them to call me “mom”, they have a mom.  So when we came up with the special name it gave an identity to my unique role I play in their lives.

When we are out and the kids call me Smom some people just assume they are say mom, but others will ask what it means.  I love being able to tell them my sweet given name 🙂

I encourage all stepmoms to find a special name, we are a special addition to their lives and that deserves a special given name.

All you Smom’s out there you ARE Special!

Paris Bedroom Made for a Princess

This is one of my favorite projects!

My husband loves for the kids to have special unique rooms.  When we moved into our new house a few years back, the kids lost their special rooms and were stuck with old normal rooms for a while…poor kids 😦  For my stepdaughters 10th birthday she asked for her bedroom to be done.  So we got to work brain storming.  We knew she wanted a swinging chair, and that she loved Paris.  So I got to work.

I decided to paint the room light pink with sparkles…this is amazing and I would use this again,super simple you add packets of sparkles in your paint.  I used two packets.   It was very shimmery instead of over powering glitter.

When designing the kids rooms I always think openness and functional.  One of her favorite things to do in her room is dance around, I wanted to make sure her room was open enough for her to dance to her hearts content.  This presented a problem because there wasn’t a ton of wall space for the desk/vanity she wanted and a dresser so I decided on a loft bed with a dresser underneath to give more space. I knew I wanted to do something one of a kind so  I found the furniture online for a great price.  I hand painted all of her furniture.  I rolled most of it and used a stencil cut with my Silhouette Cameo  for all the design elements on the faces.  I also replaced the knobs with a bit of bling!

Next my husband made his way to the attic to get the chair ready to hang.  We cut the legs off the chair to let it swing freely.  I did a little work on the edges to give it some character, and my husband did all of the rope detail.

I found a vanity at the thrift store and got to painting.  I just love the vertical striping on the side.

Then my husband had to brilliant idea to make canopies over the windows.  Here is the link to see what we did exactly. This made the room extra special.  I just love how it turned out.dsc_0674dsc_0673

The canopies that made the room complete. dsc_0672

This bed was a labor of love.  I spent a lot of time here. dsc_0671dsc_0669dsc_0670dsc_0668dsc_0667

We found this cute little mannequin at a store that was closing.  My stepdaughter changes the outfits each season and we are just amazed at what she puts together. I found this cute little garden drink cart at the thrift store as well…it fit perfect for extra storage. dsc_0666dsc_0665dsc_0664

I love this cute mirror on the back of her door. I didn’t want to do anything permanent so I used an over the door wreath hook and a command hook for the bottom. It works perfect.   I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut this vinyldsc_0662

Her hanging chair! dsc_0661

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I also did this cute vinyl on her door.  It says the room of Tyler in French!

I think this room is exactly what I would have wanted as a kid!

Fabric Wall Cross

I have seen this idea circulating on Pinterest and decided to give it a try.  I really love it, I made a few extra for gifts as well.dsc_0855-001

I cut the boards.  It was my first time using the table saw.  Not a scary as I thought. dsc_0832-001

Then I stained them.  After that my hubby did pocket holes on the back with the router. dsc_0835-001

Then I stapled the fabric in place.dsc_0857-001dsc_0858-001dsc_0860-001

I used thick thread to tighten and tie a knot.  I needed help with this to keep it tight. dsc_0862dsc_0861

That’s it.  It took about 1 hour start to finish.  I made 3.

Dog Leash Hanger

I decided I needed a place to put the leashes.  We got one more pup about a month after I made this…Now I have to make another one to put our new girl’s name on it! In case you are counting…yes that makes three.  We are a little crazy! (Edit: And then we added a forth after this was written!)

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I stained the board, I was lucky and found a scrap piece that was just perfect!  Then I have my husband help me attach the hooks and the bracket for the jar.  dsc_0843-001

I cut my vinyl on my silhouette cameo and then painted.  dsc_0845-001

So I made a HUGE mistake that actually turned out really cool.  My vinyl bled a little…I will be using the modge podge method next time.  So I tried to clean it up and ended up making a bigger mess.  I figured I would try to stain again over the paint and see what happened.  It actually came out cool and made the lettering look a little aged!  So I would do this again next time, I really love the look.  dsc_0849-001dsc_0851-001

Love really is a four-legged word in this house!

Baseball Stadium Cake

Yet another baseball cake!! What can I say my nephew really loves baseball.  This year I went for a stadium.

I wish I had gotten pictures of how I stacked the cakes but unfortunately I did not.  I used the grass tip for all the buttercream and fondant for the decorations.  The “stands” are rice krispie treats and fondant.  I used royal icing for my “glue” to get the sprinkles to stick.  I think I turned out pretty good although I would spend a little more time perfecting the stadium next time.

Hope this gives someone a different idea 🙂 dsc_0910