Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Summer Fun

Summer vacation is coming to an end for us, sadness! We reached the part where we are working to check off last minute items on our summer to-do list and preparing for our back to school days (for Mommy and Daddy anyway) We've had so much fun this summer, so I thought it would be nice to share some highlights.

Playing a little baseball with Daddy.

Going to the Fair with Mimi and Auntie Janine.

Enjoying some summer treats.

Listening to some stories at the library.

Playing Outside, A LOT.

It's so sad to see summer go and give up my temporary stay at home mommy gig, but I love fall and can't wait for all the fun and family time it brings.

Magnetic Chalkboard and Other Basement Updates

Once we mapped out the basement layout I knew I wanted to have a special kid's nook in a little hallway that is otherwise a wasted space. We decided we would frame out and paint a magnetic chalkboard for Payton to use. Sounds easy, right? Wrong! Thank goodness Daddy was a trooper and remained calm during this (what seemed as a) never ending process.

I picked up a can of Rust-Oleum Magnetic Primer at Lowes for $19.99, this stuff is NOT cheap. The hubs painted on the first coat of paint. Magnets slide right down the wall.

The hubs paints another coat of paint. Magnets slide down the wall.

I ask the hubs if he followed the directions on the can. He gives me a look and says he didn't stir as much as they said. He admits that maybe it's his fault and he goes and buys ANOTHER can of primer.

$40 later and two more coats (with the hubs follow the directions and some other pointers I found online)... "Most" magnets stick in "some" places. Others still slide down.

I am pretty disappointed with this product and I actually plan on making a phone call to the company about it. The chalkboard paint is exciting, but I really wanted Payton to be able to use her magnetic letters the most.

The primer said you should be able to get 3 coats for a 16' in space. I recommend a MUCH smaller space and you might have better results. My problem with this is how many people want to make a mini magnet wall???

After the primer fiasco we were thankful the chalkboard paint went on very easily and the hubs threw up a frame to define the space. The wall is a little bumpy thanks to all the coats of magnetic primer, but Payton is still pretty excited about it.

We also had a wasted space under the steps that we weren't sure what to do with because it is so dark back there. I had seen a couple ideas like this and this on Pinterest, and quickly put the bug in my sweet hubs ear how fun this would be for Payton. One day I came home to him working in the basement and found this sweet surprise...

The space looks into this little play-nook.

As you can tell by the (dark) pictures we still need to figure out the lighting situation back there. Like I said, this was wasted space we were trying to put to good use. There aren't any lights in this whole area so we are brainstorming some ideas.

On other basement news, we have flooring going in. The hubs has been working on it with every space second between painting my mom's shutters and baseball camp. Here's a sneak peak.

Payton's favorite spot so far is the guest bedroom closet. Sorry future guest!

Want to see what the rest of the basement looks like? It's a combo of my classroom storage and man furniture we are storing for a friend for this month.

Holy Anxiety Attack!!! I just keep telling myself that we are in the home stretch and our to-do list is getting shorter and shorter.

*Finish Flooring
*Add Baseboards (which you can see from the picture is painted and ready to go)
*Tile the Shower
*Install Toilet
*Install Sink
*Install Doorknobs 
*Hang Curtains
*Hang Sliding Door Blinds
*Finish the Guest Bedroom Window Sill (that's right, the hubs even had to build windowsills) 
*Getting Some Lighting Up in Here!!! 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Our neighbor gave us a few yummy oatmeal cookies the other day and Payton and Nick were both big fans of them, so of course I needed the recipe to whip some up myself. I have to say they are some of the best oatmeal cookies I have ever tasted, and very easy to make. I think it's the hint of cinnamon that makes them a little more tastier.

I used Quaker Oats and Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate Chips. Some alternatives to the chocolate chips could be craisins, raisins, nuts, etc.

The hardest part is once you mix the dough it needs to be refrigerated for at least an hour. That's a long wait for a cookie lover like myself.

The recipe can be found here. The website also has a few other meals and desserts I'd like to try.

The up side to Payton's Toy Story addiction is it does keep her occupied while I am baking.