Friday, April 29, 2011

A Simple Homemade Card

I had to get a couple birthday cards in the mail today, but when I looked through my stash there was nothing appropriate for either my sister-in-law or an elderly gentleman from our church. 

So I pulled out some blank cards and made my own!

I started with a blank blue card and white envelope--I found a huge box of them at a thrift store recently. Score! 

I layered a ripped piece of dark blue scrapbook paper over a piece of light-and-dark patterned paper, then added a ribbon.

Exhibit A

Exhibit B.

Nothing fancy, but I like the personal touch! Do you ever make cards?

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Arbor Day came a few days early here at Prairie Acres. 

Or we're late for Earth Day. 

Or it's purely coincidence cuz that's how we roll around here.

In any case, Prairie Acres is now home to 200 more trees! 

Our property isn't huge--just 5 acres, and we're not trying to start forest!

You see, we have lots of wide open spaces around us. 

and not much to stop the near-constant wind! 

The 10-15 mature trees on our property aren't much of a wind or snow break.

Two years ago, we planted 200 hybrid willows that act as a fence along our property. They're already 12-15 feet tall!

The new baby pines went in rows on the north and west sides of our property where the wind usually comes from.

One line of willows, three lines of pines--I'd say we're not even going to think it's windy around here anymore!

Eventually anyway... 

Happy Earth Day, Arbor Day or random tree-planting day!

PS: We got our trees from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. 200 trees set us back about $85. Check to see if your state has a program!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Belly and the Boys

My friend Noelle gave me the gift of taking some maternity pictures of me!

Of course no one could resist snapping a few of my little guys too!

I've got several projects going (at once!), so hopefully I'll have some fun before-and-after shots coming soon! Have a great day!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Pregnancy Update-36 Weeks

How Far Along: 36 Weeks! Only a month left!!!

Size of baby: Approximately 6 pounds and 18 1/2 inches. 

Maternity Clothes: Um, at 36 weeks nothing non-maternity fits anymore!

Gender: I wish I knew!!! I'm carrying this baby way out in front but also low. What do you think it is?!

Movement: Lots and lots! There are definite active and resting times during the day and night. It's funny how well you can see the baby move now--it must be getting tight in there!

What I miss: Being able to stand/walk comfortably for more than a few minutes! I get so tired! I'm still checking off the DIY projects though! This week I'm painting baby's crib and I bought supplies for a wall treatment/paint project in the nursery too.

Sleep: It's been better the last couple weeks! My hips aren't hurting as much. 

Symptoms: I'm still getting some heartburn but it's usually not that bad. My swelling is better--just my ankles and a little on my feet. Eating more veggies and protein and staying very hydrated really really helps with that! I try to rest for an hour when my boys rest and I don't let myself do projects in the evening, I just sit and read or blog. When I do stand or walk for awhile I get pretty strong braxton hicks and have some ligament pain and cramping sometimes. Only a few more weeks!

Best Moment This Week: For some reason the baby's features have become real to me recently. Like I can really picture what a newborn looks like, with scrunched up eyes and round cheeks... So cute!

What I am looking forward to: I'm SO excited to meet this baby, know if it's a boy or girl and give it a name! Then the cuddling and getting-to-know-you and showing my boys their little brother/sister. So fun!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Dropcloth Curtains

I've jumped on the dropcloth curtain trend train and I don't intend to hop back off any time soon. In fact, I'm getting more dropcloths next town day so I can do some pillows and things too! 

I just love the texture and natural colors. 

And that these curtains cost $9 and an hour of my time!

Since there are so many tutorials out there and I can't claim to know how to sew, I'm not going into detail. Besides, so much of it is up to you and your space!

Here's what I did, briefly. 

~Bought one dropcloth at my favorite love-to-hate superstore for $9.

~Washed dropcloth with bleach, cool water and cool drying temp (so it didn't shrink too much).

~Cut the dropcloth in half vertically.

~Waited at least a week to sew hems because I got sick.

~Sewed a hem down my two raw edges in less than an hour while my boys slept.

~Cut off one of the ends because my ceilings aren't 9 feet tall!

~Hemmed a pocket for the curtain rod cuz I couldn't be bothered to go back to the store to get those clips that everyone loves. 

~Hung the finished panels in my bedroom.

~Laughed cuz they were too short! (I didn't measure. Duh!)

~Left 'em up anyway, cuz they were only $9 and I can always add a ruffle or something. Besides, they hang behind our bed--why do they need to touch the ground?!

~Stood back and admired the soft glow they add to our bedroom!

~Tried to take pictures, but I only have a point-and-shoot and it's impossible to get a good picture of something against a window! 

~Waited a week and tried again.

~Decided 'good enough' was all I could do and that I need to just post about 'em anyway!

I love my dropcloth curtains, and you can be sure that this DIY blogger has more dropcloth projects coming!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Garden 2011

We woke up to snow this morning. Yes, it's the middle of April! I'm especially anxious for the weather to warm up this spring because I need to get the garden in before the baby's born! There's a month left!

Last Sunday was a warm and beautiful day, and even though I was still recovering from being sick (again!!!) I got three of our raised beds planted with cool-weather crops; peas, spinach, cabbage, lettuce, beets. 

Let's consider this the 'before' shot for garden pictures to come, especially in July or so!

That grassy stuff is actually garlic that I left in the garden last fall. 

Of course I had lots of help!

Train 'em young!

Or let 'em play with trains...

They're happy as long as there is dirt!

The occasional ride on Daddy's mower doesn't hurt their spirits either!

It was good to work up the soil and plant the tiny seeds. Can't wait for the first salad!


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