Monday, May 9, 2016

Our Cozy Cabin Before & After

I've been meaning to do a before an after for a while now of our little cabin. It would have been much easier to buy a house that didn't need a lot of work, but those kinds of houses weren't on a lake (and if they were, they weren't anywhere near our price range)! 

There's not much lake front property available on the lake we chose. When we found a house that we could afford on Kurt's parents' lake... we jumped at the chance. We bought our first house without even seeing it in person! I'm sure people have done crazier things?! Lucky for us, it's turned out to be pretty great.

We've worked very hard on making it our own, even if we only live there for six weeks a year. It's really important that Sawyer and Eleanor have some "roots" in the states so making our cabin feel like ours has made such a difference! 

We bought our house two years ago and the first changes we made was put in new floors and paint. We're so lucky to have my step-dad put the floors in for us while we were still in China. When we first got to our house two summers ago, we thought we could take on the painting ourselves. But, we were jet lagged with a baby.... and it was taking forever (a bit ambitious, I know). My mom ended up taking pity on us and hiring a painter to finish the job. You wouldn't believe how much paint the wood paneling just sucked up-  it needed so many coats.

Last summer, we made small changes to the bathroom including a new floor tile, removing the shower door, changing out the lighting, and painting. This summer, we hope to have an outdoor patio that we can enjoy our meals on complete with outdoor furniture. 

We're so proud of how far it's come and can't wait to keep making improvements. It's a really tricky balance figuring out what's worth DIYing or paying someone else to do since we have such a short amount of time to spend there each summer. We want to savor and enjoy each moment! 

Hopefully we can add some more photos after this summer including the exterior and bedrooms.

Living room 









our view

Sunday, May 8, 2016

12 Months of Eleanor

Happy first birthday to our sweet, adventurous little soul! 

I was a little emotional leading up to your birthday, and not because I don't want you to grow up...I just feel like the year just flew by and I wish I could just stop time so I can capture every little detail and remember it forever.

Some things I don't want to forget... 
The way your little feet wiggle anytime you're sitting in a chair, the way you lay your head down on my shoulder when you're drifting off to sleep, your happy squeals and giggles, how you blow kisses, the way you toss out ALL of the clothes out of the dresser drawers (there's no point in folding the clothes anymore), the way you hide behind the curtains or in our closet waiting for Sawyer to find you, how you always share you food with the dogs even if we tell you no 34893849 times... and laugh about it. 

Eleanor Beth, you are seriously a dream. You're everything I could have imagined and hoped my daughter would be. You're beautiful inside and out. Joy and light just radiate from you, it's contagious. Thank you for making our little family four complete, we love you so much! xx

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

9 Months of Eleanor

Eleanor has grown so much and I can't believe at the end of this month, we'll have a ten month old! It feels like "babyhood" is flying by so much faster than it did with Sawyer. I'm certain it has to do with the fact that we've been endlessly chasing two little ones around.

Eleanor, you are a wild, sweet girl. It's fun to watch you explore and discover things on your own every day. I love when you still fall asleep on my shoulder and I can sneak some extra snuggles in. Everything you do is full of such joy and excitement. I love you so much baby girl!

.... no idea! I think she is around 17 lbs? 

Says: mom-ma, da (daddy)

Does: crawls (since 6 months), standing and walking along things, have 5 teeth, shakes her head yes and no, now share a room with her brother

Eats: Anything we eat ... she tries everything! But she especially loves blueberries, raisins, pumpkin, scrambled eggs, and banana pancakes

Likes: attention, eating the bamboo plant (see proof below), playing in the sand, taking baths and splashing water, eating REAL food, chasing the dogs and trying to pull their tails and/or grab their fur, giving wide open mouth kisses, squealing, dancing, hanging out with her big brother, opening and closing things, her binky, putting things she shouldn't into her mouth (like play-doh, dirt, sand, stale food).

Dislikes: getting her diaper changed, staying in one spot too long/being confined,  teething, when we move her away from something dangerous or gross (she flails her entire body and yells at us!)

our little panda