Thursday, September 03, 2015

Thankful to be a NICU Nurse today!!!

This morning I am amped up.  No caffeine!  No sleep for 26 hours!  Just awake and energized and full of ideas and thoughts.  So instead of going to sleep like a good night shift nurse, I am sitting in my comfy bird chair with my hot vanilla milk and blogging.  When the ideas start coming, sometimes you have to slow down and just get them on paper (well, sort of).  So today I'm having a thankful day.

I try so hard to be grateful for each and every moment.  I count each gift that God has graciously given me.  My joy journals will attest to that fact.  I have named and received almost 4000 gifts from God.  The last couple of hours are no exception.

  Last night I was working in my NICU with two sweet babies.  I started thinking how truly blessed I really am as one of the little ones held my thumb in his hand.  A hand so tiny his thumb and fingers still had a cm to go before they would touch each other.   These babies are fighting for their lives.  Again and again they stop breathing and I rub their back and see their dusky lips and ask them to please just keep breathing.  One more good deep breathe to bring the color back to their tiny faces.  And I'm grateful for my life.  And for my healthy children.  I'm grateful for my job that allows me to snuggle these precious children and love on them day after day, until they are big enough to go home to their own mommy.  I walk through doors that are closed to all but the few that take care of these sweet ones and the families holding onto hope and fighting back tears until they can take their baby home.  And I'm grateful!

No one knows the hours or days that they have left here on earth.  We are only here for a moment, and then are gone like the flowers that grow outside my window.  Take time today to search for the gifts that have been given to you.  They aren't a gift until you name them.  Write them down.  Say them out loud.  Realize what you have.  I am thankful for life and smiles, friendships and encouragement, a clean floor and folded laundry, kids that are learning to do the chores and give me sweet kisses and love.  There is so much to thank God for!!!!

I'm exhausted and headed up to my comfy bed with my huge fan that drowns out noise (for which I am SUPER thankful).  Love you all!  I am grateful for each of you in my life.  You enrich my life and encourage me more than you will ever know.  Have a great day!

Saturday, June 06, 2015

Kids Say the Darndest Things

Bekah’s Questions When She was 8 Years Old 
 Hannah’s Questions When She was 6 Years Old

Questions about Daddy

1. What is something dad always says to you?
Hannah: I love you
Bekah: I’m a tom boy.
2. What makes dad happy? Hannah: When I say I love you.  Bekah:  Sticking out his tongue and burping at the table.
3. What makes daddy sad? Hannah: When I disobey.  Bekah:  When someone dies.
4. How does your daddy make you laugh? Hannah:  When I do something silly.  Bekah:He tickles me, makes faces at me and burps at the table.
5. What was your dad like as a child? Hannah:  Joyful.  Bekah:  Kind
6. How old is your daddy? Hannah:  I don’t know. . . 42.  Bekah:  44
7. How tall is your daddy? Hannah: Over the 6  Bekah: Two yard sticks.
8. What is his favorite thing to do? Hannah: Keeps a secret to go out to places.  Bekah:  Singing
9. What does your dad do when you're not around? Hannah:  Watches TV.  Bekah:  He works, plays on his iPad.
10. If your dad becomes famous, what will it be for? Hannah:  Being a doctor (giggles)  Bekah:  Singing and playing the drums.
11. What is your daddy really good at? Hannah:  I can’t think of anything that daddy is not good at, except going on walks.  You never go on walks.  Bekah:  Working for Papa Karl.
12. What is your dad not very good at? Hannah:  Going on walks.  Bekah:Walks
13. What does your dad do for a job? Hannah:  Goes to the office.  Bekah:  Works for Papa Karl and gets phone calls.
14.What is your dad’s favorite food? Hannah:  I have to say Ice cream.  Bekah:  Meat- tri-tip , pork chops
15.What makes you proud of your daddy?  Hannah: I’m out of ideas.  Bekah:  He gets money to pay for our school and he is very kind.
16. If your dad were a character, who would he be?  Hannah:   Mr. Banks in Mary Poppins   Bekah:  He would make a good Pooh Bear.
17. What do you and your dad do together?   Hannah:  Watch Movies.  Bekah:  Wrestle, spend time together.
18. How are you and your dad the same?  Hannah:  No idea.  Bekah:  We like to wrestle and burp at the table out loud.
19. How are you and your dad different? Hannah:  He has a mustache and I don’t.  Bekah:  He is stronger than I am.
20. How do you know your dad loves you? Hannah: You say you love me.  Bekah:  If I hit my sister, he makes me deal with it-doesn’t just let it go.
21. What does your dad like most about your mom? Hannah:  I can’t answer that.  Too creepy.   (In disgust) You kiss each other.  Bekah:  Mom is solemn and stern.
22. Where is your dad’s favorite place to go? Hannah:  Bodin. Bekah:  Coldstone.
23. How old was your Dad when you were born? Hannah: 24 years old.  Bekah:  30.

Questions about Mommy

1. What is something mom always says to you?
Hannah: I love you  Bekah: I love you
2. What makes mom happy? Hannah: When I obey and when I say I love you.   Bekah:  When I obey and when I help you clean the house.
3. What makes mom sad? Hannah: When I disobey.  Bekah:  When I disobey and we can’t go to a fun place because of that.
4. How does your mom make you laugh? Hannah:  When she does something silly like make faces.   Bekah:   When she plays fun games with me and tickles me.
5. What was your mom like as a child? Hannah:  I don’t know.  Bekah:  Playful, fun and kind.
6. How old is your mom? Hannah:  I don’t know. . . 40’s.  Bekah:   32
7. How tall is your mom? Hannah:  (Looks at height chart) 6 foot  Bekah:  A yard stick and a foot.
8. What is her favorite thing to do? Hannah: Take pictures  Bekah: Spend time with me.
9. What does your mom do when you're not around? Hannah:  Clean the house   Bekah: Sleeping, but when you aren’t sleeping, you clean and go shopping.
10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for? Hannah:  To help people and take care of them.  You would be a good nurse to be a super hero.  Bekah:  For making GF cookies.
11. What is your mom really good at? Hannah:  Being silly.  Bekah:  Baking
12. What is your mom not very good at? Hannah:  Being mad.  You don’t get mad a lot.  Bekah:  Singing and sneezing, cause you sneeze really loud.  Hatchooie!
13. What does your mom do for a job? Hannah:  Take care of people.  Babies.   Bekah:  Works nights shift taking care of babies.
14.What is your mom's favorite food? Hannah:  Mashed Potatoes and the long green things (asparagus)   Bekah:  Cheese puffs, tritip, artichokes, carrots, asparagus.
15.What makes you proud of your mom? Hannah:  When you take care of me.  You are such a good mom.   Bekah:  She takes good care of us.  When we do something wrong she doesn’t ignore it, she take care of it.  
16. If your mom were a character, who would she be? Hannah:  Mary Poppins  Bekah:  You would make a good rabbit.  Like the one in Winnie the Pooh.  Because his house is clean and that is like mom’s house.  And Mary Poppins too, since she can snap her fingers and clean a room. That is just like you.
17. What do you and your mom do together? Hannah:  Go to the park.   Bekah:  Go out to ice cream, go out to the park and just play together.
18. How are you and your mom the same? Hannah:  We like to take walks together.   Bekah:  We like to sort things and have things in its spot.
19. How are you and your mom different? Hannah:  You are taller than me. Bekah:  I don’t keep my room clean and you do.
20. How do you know your mom loves you? Hannah: You say you love me.  Bekah:  When I get hurt you are there to help me.  You help feed me, have a bed to sleep in and give me clothes.
21. What does your mom like most about your dad? IHannah: That he sleeps with you.   Bekah: That he is inappropriate.   He burps at the table.
22. Where is your mom's favorite place to go? Hannah: On a walk to the park.  Bekah:  To work because you have lots of friends there, the beach and the park to be with us.
23. How old was your Mom when you were born?  Hannah: 24 years old.  Bekah: 32

Saturday, May 16, 2015

DIY Farmhouse Table for $150

One of my dear friends has a bunch of kids and a table that was falling apart.  So we started talking about making a new table.  After lots of time on pinterest finding the perfect table, we chose this Farmhouse Table.  You can click on  Ana White's website for the plans to make your own.

I am an amateur power tool princess, but absolutely love power tools and learning how to make awesome things.  I have never made a table before and was excited to try it.  My friend trusted me and so we started this project.  

I got 4 2x10 by 8 foot Redwood Planks for the top of the table.  That cost $100 but this table needed a good, strong and beautiful top.  The cracks and imperfections were wood puttied, sanded and sanded some more.

Then I got the 2x4s out of pine, plus the 1x4.  Note to those of you that want to make this.  Make your long cuts first and then all the shorter ones.  We had to buy an extra board since I didn't do that and I didn't have a long enough board to make the last few cuts.  We used the miter saw to make these beautiful cuts.  Be very careful to make each one exact or you get some gaps when it is assembled.

I used Danish oil stain, Dark Walnut color for the stain on the entire table.  It turned out beautifully.

Then we assembled four of the "K" pieces.  This was much more difficult than I thought it would be.  We used a drill bit to make pilot holes and then countersunk the screws.  Use the 2 inch screws to assemble these.  

I changed Anna Whites plans for putting the ends together.  Instead of using finish nails and trying to patch the holes, we just glued and clamped them together.  Once assembled, this was very sturdy.   It was simple to do and there are no nail/screw holes to be seen.

Then we added the 1x4's to the top and bottom of each end piece.  Use the 2 inch screws and go into the meat of the wood. We countersunk each of the screws so it didn't split the wood.

The rest of it went together easily.  We added the next two pieces, making sure they were centered.  To make the table a bit simpler, we made a 45 degree cut on both of the 2x4s.  This was a slightly different version that Anna White had suggested.  

Use the 3 inch screw to put the 2 2x4's together.

All set and ready to assemble.

We put the table together in the dinning room.  We added the feet to the ends and assembled the cross beams when it was upside down.  Anna White's table has the cross pieces vertical.  I chose to put them horizontal.  (Mostly because I cut the braces that way without thinking about it.)  We made the pocket holes and then did pilot holes into the 2x4's.  Once the table was flipped over, you only see one set of screws.  Everything else was hidden.

Then we flipped the table right side up and did the last of the screws in the brace.  These are the only ones that you can see on the whole table.

Anna White's design was to use finish nails and drive them through the top the table into the 2x4's.  We really didn't want any hole in the top, so we added 1x6's to the top of the ends.  My friends little boy got to help with this!  We stained the edges just so no one would see them. It blended very well with the table.

Then we added to 4 2x10's to the top.  It took awhile to make it look just right, but it was worth it.  We counter sunk the screw from below through the 1x6 scrap wood.  This table seems really sturdy and is so beautiful.  

I really loved how it turned out.  It was a fun project and I learned so much.  It took more time than I was expecting but it was my first table.  Hope you enjoy it!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

DIY Fence and Gate

 Our fence was falling apart and we knew it was time to replace it.  Chris helped me pick out new redwood 2x4s and fence boards.  I started with the gate.  I had seen a really awesome one on Pinterest (of course)!!  I copied my design from the blog, How a Girl Built a Gate.  Check out the link here How a Girl Built a Gate.

So I started by measuring the width of the gate and laying out my fence boards.  I had to cut two a bit to make it fit.

My puppy just wanted so badly to help.  How nice to have such good help!!  I laid out all the 2x4's and cut them to match the design of the door.  It is not perfect (I have never done this kind of thing before).  But it was fun to figure it out.  I used screws to keep the boards in their place and then flipped the gate over.  I secured the boards from the front of the gate.

Then I cut the top of the door.  I used a sawsal to cut it.  I found out later that I should have done this with a  jigsaw.  No kidding!  I was shaking so hard from the sawsal bouncing all over.  The girls were watching and howling with laughter.  Please use the right tool.  It is ever so much better for you, though less fun for your kids.

I bought a really cool metal window to put in the door.  Since I didn't want to screw it up, I had my darling husband help me.  We stapled the template to the door, drilled four holes in the corner and then used the jig saw to cut the hole.  We ended up having to sand a bit to get the window to fit just right.  I LOVE having the window in the door.  It is what makes it beautiful!!

I had to wait to put the door in until the fence boards were done.   It is so pretty though!

I cut all the 2x4's and had them ready to go.  Then the real work began.

After beating the boards off and installing the 2x4's, I put up all the fence boards.  I used a 2x4 to try to get them all even.  Again, not perfect, but good enough.

This long fence took me two hours to do.  I'm sure it would take professionals a lot less time, but I'm learning.  Once the 2x4's were up, the rest went pretty quickly.

Here is the finished product.  I am in love with my new fence and gate.  Hope it inspires you to get out there and do your project.  I haven't done this kind of thing before, but it is really fun.  I have to admit, I was giggling and giddy when it was done.  It is awesome to learn something new and do it.

My metal window was purchased through Nuvo Iron.  It was $60 and shipped to my house in a week.  I also go the  latch, ornamental door handle and hinges.  The hinges that came with this didn't look strong enough.  I bought separate ones the could hold 48 pounds each.  

All done!!

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

DIY Platform Bed

My sweet sister, Megan, was the inspiration for this project.  She made a bunk bed for her kids and the bed frame for her queen bed.  She is amazing and I love that she just sees something that she wants to do and she does it.  So after our bed frame broke (four times) and we gave up fixing it, I thought about making my bed frame too. After many months of having our mattress on the floor, I decided to just do it.  Pinterest lead me to the shanty-2-chic blog.  They had step by step instructions to a cute DIY Platform bed.  I found similar ones on Amazon for $1300.00.  I made mine for $280 and love it.

My patient and kind husband helped me pick out the wood that I needed. We decided to use cedar wood.  Smells great and it has great pattern in the wood.  After measuring the wood and marking it, my husband helped me cut it.  Then I sealed it with a clear polyurethane.   The next day I drilled all the pocket holes.  That was fun!  I had never done this, so again, my dear husband showed me how.  While he was at work, I carried all the wood upstairs and assembled the bed.  I got it all done before he got home.  It was so awesome surprising Chris with a finished bed that didn't collapse on him.  

This is my super cute Sis-in-law's puppy. He was helping me with my work!!
Measuring all the boards and marking them.

I used this polyurethane clear coat on the wood.  It brought out a beautiful color in it!

Here are some of the pocket holes I cut!

The frame is together!

Got all the supports in and now adding the boards.

My bed is all done!!  I love the way it turned out and it 
even looks like it matches the furniture in my bedroom.

This is a special quilt that my mom gave to me.  She sewed a letter inside the quilt with the history of the quilt.  "This quilt was given to Laurie Reynolds in 1980.  It came from a lady, 90 years old, going into a nursing home.  She said it had been made by her mother, and was very old.  It was only the top and had never been quilted.  I, Laurie, quilted about 1/2 and then the ladies at Heritage Baptist Church in Pennsylvania quilted the remainder.  The quilt came from a house in Elmira, New York.  The quilt was finished in 2007 and given to Sarah Jeanette Kuhner, Laurie's Daughter.  Laurie Reynolds"

I love the detailed quilting on here.

The Shanty-2-Chic blog had great instructions on how to make this platform bed.  It was for a twin bed and I had to measure every thing for a queen.  Here are the measurements if you want to make a queen bed.  
Two 2x8's- Cut these 62 1/2 inches long.  These are the bottom pieces for the top and the bottom.
Two 2x8's- Cut these 79 1/2 inches long.  These are the bottom pieces for the sides.
Two 2x6's- Cut these 86 1/2 inches long.  These are the side top pieces.
One 2x6- Cut this 59 1/2 inches long.  This is the top end piece.
Two 2x2's- Cut this 79 1/4 inches long.  These are the side cleats to support the boards holding up the mattress.
One 2x4-Cut this 79 1/2 inch.  This is the middle support under the boards holding up the mattress.
Thirteen 1x6's-Cut them 59 1/2 inches long.  These boards hold up the mattress.

I measured this for a 60x80 queen bed.  I cut it just slightly smaller and it is perfect with the mattress on it.  The rest of the directions on Shanty-2-Chic blog are great and easy to follow.