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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Freeze time now please

Where has the time gone? Its times like these that really make me stop and reflect on what is important in life.
My baby turned one. Seriously, how did this happen? I remember being in the hospital and bringing her into this world like it was yesterday. I remember holding my sweet Hadlee for the first time, all 8lbs. 11oz. of her. Now when I look at her I see this baby of mine, who is starting to not look so much like a baby and my heart cries. Sometimes I catch myself just staring at her, watching her play and learn all these new things and I cant help but shed a few tears. She has been the most amazing thing that has happened to me. Being a mom is the hardest and best thing I have ever done. Sometimes I feel so inadequate as a mother, and there have been so many times that I feel like I've failed. I know I am constantly comparing myself to other moms and feel like I'm just not measuring up. In times that I feel this way, I like to remember this quote from M. Russell Ballard:
 "There is no perfect way to be a good mother. Each situation is unique. Each mother has different challenges, different skills and abilities, and certainly different children.... What matters is that a mother loves her children deeply..."
I know I'm not perfect, but I do know that I love Hadlee more deeply than I have loved anything else, and in that sense, I am perfect. Happy Birthday my little Hadlee bean. I love you.

Here are some pics from her one year photo shoot. This was my first attempt at an actual photo shoot, and it was hard. I only got a few good ones. She was grumpy and not cooperating very well...but what can you expect from a sassy 1 year old?

this is the full quote from M. Russell Ballard, I just paraphrased it.
"There is no one perfect way to be a good mother. Each situation is unique. Each mother has different challenges, different skills and abilities, and certainly different children. The choice is different and unique for each mother and each family. Many are able to be 'full-time moms,' at least during the most formative years of their children's lives, and many others would like to be. Some may have to work part- or full-time; some may work at home; some may divide their lives into periods of home and family and work. What matters is that a mother loves her children deeply and, in keeping with the devotion she has for God and her husband, prioritizes them above all else."

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

New name New look

     I've decided it was time to rename the blog. When I first made this blog I was young and newly married. It was just my husband and I taking on the world one challenge and obstacle at a time.  The name The Chris and Alisons was originated by some of our friends. When we first met they didnt know our last name, so they simply referred to us as the The Chris and Alisons. It kind of stuck and to be honest, I'm kind of sad to see it go. Those were some of the most fun and exciting times thus far. We made some amazing friendships, learned some hard life lessons, and formed into the people we are today. Dont get me wrong we are still facing challenges and obstacles, but of a different sort, still learning life lessons everyday, and still being sculpted into better people and parents. But since adding Hadlee to the family, it just didnt seem right to keep it. We arent just the Chris and Alisons anymore. We're more than that. So join me on this wild and crazy ride, we call life. Hope you enjoy A Day in the Life of us.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Can you feel the LOVE?

    Love... Can you feel it? Its everywhere. Literally, everywhere. In my dining room I can count the word love 3 times. But in my life, I know I need the constant reminder that I am loved, I need to show love, and I need to be open to receive it.
     In February, I have been way more on top of my goal, House to a Home, than I was last month. Hey, its only the 4th right? and I am already blogging. Goal Accomplished! I feel like I have been crafting and creating non-stop. When my little one is napping I have three options: A. shower, B. do my wifely duties- such as cleaning the house, doing the dishes, folding the laundry, ect., or C. work on a project. Unfortunately for my family, option C would win 98% of the time. My poor hubby is so patient with me and and my hygiene (or lack thereof), the house being a wreck, and him having to rummage through the clean clothes in the hamper to find his socks. He seriously is the greatest and I'm so grateful to have him.
     Well let's get down to business, shall we? The dining room make-over was so much more fun for me than Hadlee's room. Don't tell her that. I just felt like this was more my style and I did projects that have been sitting in my craft stuff for over a year. Yes, I said it, a YEAR! First off, Chris and I finally upgraded from our 4 person, counter height table with stools, to an "adult" table. An "adult" table that can fit SIX people. That means you all are invited over for dinner!  We got a steal of a deal and I am so excited and happy. Here she is...the beauty.
I only keep 4 chairs at the table, so it doesn't seem overly crowded.
There are still plans for making a table runner and center piece.
I'm thinking something along the lines of this or even this. Opinions?

     For the decor I was going for a rustic, farm-house feel. 
I'm not sure if I nailed it or not, but this is what I have done.
Love #1

Love #2

The wreath is one of the projects that has been sitting in my craft stuff for over a year. I found this tutorial about 2 1/2 years ago and only finished the Halloween and Thanksgiving attachments. Glad I finally got around to finishing this!
The Love #1 sign is one that I found here on Pinterest. I obviously didn't use the pallet. I just had this one piece of wood lying around from a previous project, and it turned out fine!
The Love #2 is a saying I found on Pinterest (bless Pinterest) and I just use my cricut to cut vinyl and then I painted over it and pulled off the vinyl. I used some stain to make it look a little more rustic, if you will.
The fabric flower bouquet is just something I thought would compliment the farm-house theme of the room. I just followed some fabric flower tutorials (there a million) and put it together using my glue gun. I also stained a little around the edges for the same kind of look.

Chris got me this set of 14 frames for Christmas last year. It fit perfectly on the back wall. That upside down piece of paper is marking the spot for my last frame. I just haven't decided what picture I want to use. The one I printed out, just didn't look good. 

With the help of my amazingly talented sister, Brittanie, and my handy dad, we built this table. I love my table. It is still missing the handles on the mock drawers that I will eventually get around to putting on. 
(baby steps, right?)
On top of the table I have Love #3. I actually got this idea from one of our RS teachers. She brought something similar in for a display while she taught her lesson. I thought, I can totally make that. So I did. 
Just measure and cut a 2X4. Paint it brown. Cut out the letters, using my cricut. Sand the blocks and modpodged the letters on. Easy peasy.

I saw these cuties on Pinterest. Only one of the is an actual Mason jar. The other two are just jars that have had the label taken off of them and washed out. I think they turned out just as cute. 
They actually hold the flowers a little bit better than the mason jar. Just a little FYI.

I made this letter 'M' following this tutorial. She used a cereal box and yarn and I used an old huggies box I had. But I would suggest using a cereal box if you have one. It would have been much easier to manipulate and cut. I also used twine to wrap mine in, instead of yarn. 

Along with the frames, these 2 things are the only things that were bought. I got the sign at 
Hobby Lobby for $2.50 and the balls for $10 at Walmart.

I found this old piece of wood out in our back field when we first moved in. It sat there for a couple of days, so I decided to take it. Hopefully nobody came back looking for it. :) So I have had this piece of wood sitting around in our back yard for 2 years!! I figured it would go along nicely with the theme of the room. I added the heart banner and viola! I got the idea for the heart banner from this blog post. Hers was for Valentine's Day, but I loved it for everyday. 
I used fabric instead of felt and sewed mine on instead of hot gluing them.

a full few of the bottom of the table
a view of the top. That frame will also have a picture, eventually :)
and here's a few of the whole set up.

     I think its appropriate that Love is everywhere in my dining room, because I LOVE the way it turned out.
Next up... The living room. And for the love of my family and everyone else I come in contact with, I'll try and shower this month. :)

Monday, February 24, 2014

a HOUSE to a HOME in 365 days.

     I'm back!!! Yes, after nearly a year absence, I have returned. Although, I'm getting pretty good at this posting once a year thing. Hopefully, that will change this year since my goal is to make our House into a Home.
     A little back story: Chris and I have lived in our 3 bedroom, 1 1/2 bath town home for over 2 years now. I was going to post pictures of how BARE my house is, but I will spare you. Just take my word for it. There is close to nothing on my walls, no signs that there actually is a family that lives here and it doesn't give a sense of who we are and what the Mantells are all about. So, I've challenged myself to make what we call our house, into what we will hopefully be calling our home, all within in a year.
   I know, I know, most of you are probably thinking its going to take you whole year to hang up a few pictures and make your house feel a little bit homey? And to those of you who are questioning me- Yes, yes it will. I'm the type of girl who takes a whole week to wash, fold and put away laundry. I'm that girl who says..."oh, I'll do that tomorrow, and a week later, its still not done. But I'm desperately trying to change those horrible procrastinating habits that I picked up in my college years.
   Being a fairly new mom, and taking care of a gigantic dog, as well as my hubby this project seems a little daunting. So, in order to make it seem more achievable for me, I've split my house up into 12 sections.  I will attempt to complete 1 section a month and to track my progress and show some of my projects, I will be (hopefully) posting once a month.
    Oh, its already February, you say? It's true. Although, I am already a month behind on my blogging, I am however, caught up on my decorating. Here is how I plan on breaking it down:

January- Hadlee's nursery
February- Dining room
March- Living room

     I chose to do Hadlee's nursery first, because basically I felt like a horrible mom. My baby is almost one and she still had pretty much nothing in her room. Stop judging me, all you awesome 'do-it-all' mommies out there. But I figure better late than never, right? Humor me people.
    One reason I have such a hard time decorating, is because I have such a hard time making decisions. While trying to plan out Hadlee's room I probably changed my mind a million times. I didn't really want it to have a "theme" or anything. But turns out it does. and somehow that theme ended up being owls of all things. I know they are the "in" thing right now, but I just wasn't too sure about it. Also, I wanted her room to be grey, yellow and purple, but it ended up being grey, yellow, and pink. Nothing ever turns out quite like I want, but somehow works.
Without further ado, here are the projects I've done in her room, along with the tutorials I've followed:

I didn't go all out and sew all of her bedding.. I got her sheet, quilt and crib squirt at Target (I LOVE Target) and only sewed the bumper. I got all my fabrics and supplies at Joanns and followed this tutorial . I wouldn't call myself a "seasoned sewer" by any means, but this tutorial was simple and easy to follow. My work far from perfect, but throw me a bone for my first attempt at sewing a bumper. :)

I also made these pillows with the leftover fabric I had.

I've had this shelf from when I lived at my parents.. My Grandpa made it, so its sort of sentimental, and they let me take it when I moved out. It's just been sitting around and taking up space, I thought it would make a cute addition to Hadlee's room. I used this tutorial to make it look rustic and distressed.

For the owls I used this paper owl tutorial, but didn't use the oatmeal can. I used cardstock and tape and they turned out fine. I like to keep things easy and simple haha.

I got my inspiration for the frames from one I found at hobby lobby, but it was $25. Lets face it people, I'm cheap. I made this one for about $10. props to me!

I found these two on Pinterest, they didn't have tutorials but it was pretty easy to copy by looking at the picturest.

I wanted to do something with her sonogram pictures and this is what I came up with. So easy and sweet.

Using a little different method than the shelf, I made this plaque using paint, stain, vinyl, a little burlap and a cute saying by winnie the pooh.

I still have plans to make one of these to hold her hair bows and ribbons, but haven't quite gotten around to it. Also, that blank frame will eventually have a picture of Hadlee in it. I decided to wait and put a picture from her 1 year photo shoot, since that will be happening next month. Where did the time go? Also, planning on making curtains, just don't know what print of fabric to use. suggestions are appreciated!!

Well there you have it.  A nursery decorated in about a month. Everything in there looks homemade, but I don't care, and neither does she. Now it actually looks and feels like she lives in there. Which is the point of this whole thing, right?

Tune in next month, as in this month (Feb) to see what I've done to my dining room!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

a YEAR later...

     So here we are again, pretty much a year since my last post. I'm terrible at blogging. This year has been full of lots of exciting things and one precious little girl. I'm sure most of you know that my little babe, Hadlee Claire, was brought into the world this past year. She has been the most wonderful blessing and has brought so much joy into Chris and I's life. We must have done something right to get such a beautiful, happy, perfect child. I'm going to share my birth story, mostly for my own sake. This way it will forever be immortalized on the world wide web, should I ever forget it.
     Let's go back to the month of March. I was hugely pregnant and more uncomfortable than I have ever been in my entire life. Good thing it wasn't too hot yet. I really would have died. I was at the point in my pregnancy where I was seeing the doctor once a week and much to my dismay, I wasnt dilated much at all. I was at a .5-1.
     On March 13, I went into the OB and the doctor decided to strip my membranes to see if he could get me dilating a little bit. By Friday, I felt like I was leaking fluid. Saturday we called and they told us to go on in because they didnt want to take any chances with me being 38 weeks pregnant. So we went and they hooked me up to the monitors and checked to see if my water had broke. It was a big NEGATIVE. I was still only dilated to a 1 and tested no to any amniotic fluids. They kept me there for an hour and although I was having contractions every three minutes, they were so small I couldnt feel a thing. So they sent me on home.
     Saturday night my contractions started getting a little stronger, but were really inconsistent. I woke up Sunday and headed to church, but only ended up staying for sacrament meeting. My contractions were really bad, but still inconsistent. They were ongoing all day Sunday and by 10:30 that night they were pretty strong, but we just went to sleep. Well Chris did. I tossed and turned for a couple of hours because I was having them every 4-5 minutes but I really didnt want to go back in and them tell me that it was another false alarm and send me home. So I got up and walked around, cleaned the house, washed the dishes and tried to keep busy.
     Finally, around 4:30am I woke Chris up and told him I was in a lot of pain and maybe we should go in. He suggested that we wait till the OB opened at 9. I agreed. He stayed awake with me and we decided to set up the baby cradle and pack a bag just in case. We finished doing all the baby prepping at around 5:30am and sat on the bed and I suddenly felt a popping sensation. I gasped and said "Chris, I think my water just broke!" and it definitely did. Chris freaked out a little bit and we rushed to the hospital. I had about 3 or 4 terrible contractions and then got the epidural, Oh blessed epidural. It was magical.
     The nurse checked to see how far I was dilated and ... you guessed it, I was still only at a 1. So they started my on some pitocin and within an hr and a half I was already dilated to 6.5! YAY. I thought. So they started prepping for delivery and brought in all the good stuff. But then little Hadlee started acting up. Every time they upped the dosage of pitocin her heart rate would drop. Basically this went on for the next 9 or so hours. At about 5pm I spiked a fever and the doctor was concerned about infection for Hadlee and me. It took us about 5 minutes to decide that a c-section was the best choice for us.
    They prepped me by upping my dosage of antiseptic. Holy worst feeling of my life! I could only feel my face and it felt awful. Chris got to put on that cute white outfit and from that point on, I dont really remember a whole lot!... What I do remember is Chris showing me our beautiful, healthy, perfect, scowling baby girl. She looked so angry. Then for the next 2 hours we were separated while I recooped from the anesthesia. When I was finally able to see her again, she was still scowling with the grumpiest face I have ever seen. But I never knew that my heart could love something so much. There it is. 9 days early, 10 hours of labor (not counting sundays contractions), ending in a c-setion, and nothing like I had planned but was totally worth it.
Sorry it's so long. Im pretty long winded when I tell the story.

Her angry scowl

sleeping babe

her precious little feet

I love her so much
proud mommy and daddy
I have a million more pictures.... but I'll spare you.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Remember that one time?

So, remember that one time I actually kept up on my blog? Yeah, me either. Its been way too long! A lot has happened in the last year and 3 months. Too much to write about. So I'll just hit on the major moments.

Home Sweet Home
Probably the most exciting thing that has happened this past year was we bought a house! Its so weird to say that we are home owners. I feel like a real grown-up now. I'm Still trying to figure out how I feel about it, the grown-up part that is. I absolutely love having my own house. Chris and I are still trying to make it feel like a home by doing a bunch of updating, a little bit of remodeling(eventually), and putting up decorations and pictures. Lets just say its a work in progress.
I don't have any pictures, but I'll be sure to put up before and after pictures when we begin the updating. :)

How much is that doggie in the window? Ruff ruff!
This past valentines day Chris surprised me with a puppy! My sweet little Jet. He brings so much fun and happiness into our home. Now I'm not going to lie, at first Chris and I were thinking, what the heck did we get ourselves into?? But he's past the stage where he whines all night, poops in his crate, and constantly needs supervision. Thank goodness!!
My baby Jet

He melts my heart

I could post a million pictures of him..

Not so puppy anymore... my like teen age Jet. He's even bigger now

2 new additions to the fam
Chris and I are so blessed to be aunt and uncle to 2 new nephews. One on my side... my older sister Brittanie and brother-in-law, Branden, brought Kason Troy Sargent into the world on Feb. 22 (chris's bday). He is seriously so cute and I just want to eat him up.
I call this one the "smolder"

Like I said... I just want to eat him up.

Also, my brother-in law and sister-in-law, Sean and Collette brought their bundle of joy into the world on June 6. He is so tender and and I can not wait to meet him when they visit in october.
Baby Greyson

I peed a little when I saw this picture. Seriously... hes a doll!

New jobs and lovin' it
Both Chris and I have been so blessed to be able to get new jobs that we both love.
I have finally been able to get a job working in an elementary school as an instructional assistant. I absolutely have had the best experience and love my co-workers and those kids. This is the first time in my life that I can say I love my job and look forward to going to work.
Chris has recently gotten a job at a J.W. Bradley, which is a mortgage company. He is really excited about actually working in something that interests him and that he wouldnt mind moving up at. And not to mention where he doesnt have to sell anything...first time since hes been able to work. bless his little heart.

I am sure I'm missing a whole load of things that have happened this year that were significant... but this was a good start, right? We have been so blessed with everything that has happened this year and are so excited to see what will be coming next. And this time I will be updating everyone along the way!! I'm excited to be back into the blogging world. I really have missed it, and I know all of you have missed me too... right? haha.

Friday, April 15, 2011

5 things.. already?

How is it Friday already?
Lately time has been passing me by... The days seem like weeks, but the weeks seem like days.
I've literally been trying to write this post for 4 hours now trying to think of 5 things that made me happy this week... ummmm sad? yes.

Here are the things I've come up with.

co-ed... softball
YAY! co-ed softball started this week. Our team is fun and we are actually really good!
So excited for the season

Offer made
We made an offer on a house this week. Its a short sale so it could take some time, but we are hoping it goes through. We love it!

Application sent in
I have officially applied to two jobs for the summer! keep your fingers crossed for me

I finished M. Russell Ballard's book "Our Search for Happiness". Absolutely an awesome book. READ it.

Erica and I started our own friend blog... were funny!