November 15, 2011

~Tap.Tap. Is this thing on?~

Yes, it is on! Wow, my blog is still here and as you can see I am in the works of giving it a bit of a face lift. I am very new to photoshop elements and just trying to figure it out by trial and error and experimenting. I have finished my first attempt at a header (don't even ask how long it took me to kind of figure it out and finally get something that I sort of like...only to have my son point out that the L in his name is a different font!).

Sorry for being absent for the last month and a half, I have no excuse. Well, except for having a newborn. I guess all of the owl hats that I have to make could be keeping me away. Did I mention the mountain of laundry that I have, or that it has been harvest season (making me a harvest widow...with a newborn). Those are probably the main reasons why I haven't been blogging, like I said no excuse;). Anyway, I am here now and will be updating on the birth of my beautiful son, Logan. Yes, you read that right. Turns out "baby girl" is not even close to being a girl. He is my surprise baby and I can't wait to share his story! I promise pictures and the birth of sweet Logan James will be coming shortly!!

Oh, and I know my new obsession with Pinterest has for sure kept me from blogging! It is so much easier to randomly click away while I am nursing Logan than it is to try to write a blog post one handed. I need to get back to blogging and am going to try to make it a priority because I don't want to forget a thing about this time in my life (adding Logan to our family), and the best way for me to not forget is to write it out!


September 29, 2011

~37 Weeks~

It is almost October. Which means it is almost baby month!!! I am getting very excited to hold this little one in my arms and not this big belly. I am surprisingly not anxious, though. I know with Trevor and Ethan I was like get this baby out of me by 37 weeks but not this time. I am just fine with her staying put three more weeks, it will come soon enough as it is! I am also remembering and always thinking about the two babies that I lost in October (and of course will never forget the one I lost in January). October is miscarriage and stillborn awareness month, it would be great if you could say a prayer for all of the families that have been through such heartbreaking losses. These are babies that are angels in heaven, and always in the hearts of the ones that never got to hold them in their arms.

Last week I was dilated to 2cm, not shocking as I seem to be one that can walk around at 4cm for two weeks and still need drugs to really get labor going. Maybe this time will be different, I am so hoping for it to just all happen on its own. No cytotec (wish i would have know more about this drug, would never have let my doctor give it to me with Landon...horrid stuff!), no cervidil, no pitocin....that sure would be nice!

I am getting a lot done around the house, probably this is why my blogging skills have been terrible lately. Too busy doing laundry and organizing EVERYTHING! And purging, oh man am I getting rid of so much crap that we just don't need. I am taking advantage of just having Trevor and Ethan right now and getting this all done before a newborn will be taking up 95% of my time!

Belly shot with my scarf on, then realized the scarf kind of defeats the purpose of the belly shot...maybe not so much when it is this big hahaha
So here is take 2, no scarf :)


~Chunky Owl Hats~

I love these and have been eyeing different owl hats on etsy and ravelry for some time now. It has been on my never ending crafting "to do list" that I keep in my head. I finally made one for this baby girl that should be here soon. Turns out they are a hit, and so far I am in the process of making ten more for people who have wanted one. I am charging $20 a hat, if you want me to make you one let me know! If you know how to crochet it is a really easy project and only takes about 2 total hours from start to finish.
Infant/Newborn size
Toddler size (Ethan is always such a good sport always trying on the girly things I make!)
Two hats waiting for me to sew on the owl faces, one kid size and one toddler size

To make your own you will need:

  • extra bulky yarn (I use Lion Brand, Hometown USA), two skiens are needed, you can choose all the same color or make the earflaps a coordinating color
  • I use a size K hook for the hat, earflaps, and ears
  • Worsted weight yarn in white for the eyes, orange for the nose, and black for the eyelashes
  • I use a size H hook for the eyes and nose
  • Needle for sewing in ends and sewing one the eyes, nose, ears, and eyelashes
How to make it (this is not a pattern or even the best instructions, if you have questions please ask or google is always a great tool!):
  • First just make a basic hat, sorry instructions on how to make a hat....but a tip, use the magic loop to start the hat. It is the best way! And I also half double crochet this entire hat. If you need instructions on how to crochet a hat, search ravelry for a free patterns or just google it! 
    • For a baby hat, I usually start with 6 stitches and then increase until I get to about 36 stitches.
    • For a toddler hat, I usually start with 6 stitches and then increase until I get to about 40 stitches.
    • For a kids hat, I usually start with 8 stitches and then increase until I get to about 44 stitches.
  • If you are doing two colors, I do three rows of the trim color and then cast off. 
  • Once the hat is done, I do the earflaps. Again size depends on the size of the hat. I mark the middle left and middle right of the hat and then mark the starting points of my flaps, making sure to have 12 stitches across the front of my hat. I then do one side at a time, starting with either 6, 8, or 10 stitches.
    • Gradually decrease to get the desired length of earflap, cast off. Repeat on the other side.
    • Add either braids or tassels to the ends of the flaps.
  • Next I make the ears by chaining 4, 5, or 6 and then I use single crochet. Decreasing to get little triangles. Make 2. Tie a few scrap pieces of yarn at the top to make little tuffs. You can either sew these on now, or set aside and sew everything on at the end.
  • With the white yarn and size H hook, make 2 circles. I use single crochet and magic loop to start the eyes. 
    • round 1: single crochet 6 in loop (6sts)
    • round 2: 2 single crochet in each stitch around (12sts)
    • round 3: 2 single crochet in each stitch around (24sts)
    • round 4: single crochet in each stitch around (24)
    • If you want the eyes bigger, repeat round 4. 
  • With the orange yarn and size H hook, make a triangle for the nose.
    • Same concept as the ears, chain however many stitches you want it to be long and then decrease the stitches until it is the shape you want it. Tip, I usually decrease every row but one row I will repeat with the same amount of stitches to make it a bit longer...usually right in the middle so row 3 is usually a repeat row with no decrease.
  • When I chain/cast (not sure which is right, is cast off for knitting?), anyways, I leave a long tail and then use this tail of yarn to sew the eyes, nose, and ears into place. 
  • Now do just that, sew the ears, nose, and then eyes into place. Then sew on some black eyelashes with your black yarn. Finished, and so darn cute!

September 19, 2011

~35 Weeks~

Baby and I are doing great, I have my 36 week appointment this coming Friday and then I start going weekly...only 5 more doctor appointment. How is that possible??!!
Auny Pole came out to my house Friday evening and took some pictures of me at 35 weeks. She sent me a few of the pictures as a sneak peak and I love how they turned out, can't wait to see the rest of them!

August 30, 2011

~First Day(s) of School~

Coming tomorrow, stay tuned....I promise to have some pictures of my two school boys! I just need to get some sleep right now...until tomorrow.

Wow, tomorrow turned into almost a month! Sorry!

Well, Landon started kindergarten this year and so far is loving it! He rides the bus, gets up bright and early to get on by 7:20 in the morning and is doing great. He comes home a bit tired and sometimes (getting better), quite crabby. Going to school five days, all day is an adjustment! He seems to really enjoy school, learning, and of course playing with friends. He is doing Jolly Phonics and is so excited about learning to read. On his own, he loves practicing his writing letters and is now more interested in writing words. I hope his love for learning and discovering just continues to grow as he does!

Another first in the Kuennen house, Trevor's first day of preschool! I though Trevor was going to be tough, as in crying and not wanting to go to school. Turns out I was completely 100% wrong, and he just loves it! He is only going two mornings a week, with other kids that are three and four, so as far as an adjustment it really hasn't been a problem and is just fitting into our weekly routine nicely. He gets so excited about school the night before and then when I pick him up, he is still excited and fills me in on all of the fun things that he did that day.

I am so proud of my two school boys! I can't believe that next year at this time I will have 3 in school, that just seems so unreal!

Waiting for the bus:

August 29, 2011


"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." 
Genesis 1:1

Trevor wants to learn about how God created the world, so with the help of some websites that I will mention and link, and a little creativity I am helping Trevor make a book. We started today, and each day we are focusing on what God created on that day. I gave Trevor his book this morning and it was completely blank. I told him how we would fill the book up one day at a time, as we learned about God. He was and is super excited! We did a five minute or so lesson (that I found at Sunday School Fun Zone, if you scroll down to Lesson: God Made the Beautiful World! you will see a great, interactive lesson on what God created each day. I omitted Bubbles the Bear) and then created his first pages in his book.

And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night.
Genesis 1:3-5

I drew two triangles, and then told Trevor to color one DARK and one LIGHT. He used black for the dark and yellow for the light. After he had them colored he got to cut them out and glue them on. I had already cut out a number 1 (I got the creation numbers at and traced around it onto his book. Trevor them glued it and he had to match it up as best as he could, turns out those sticker books have been paying off because he lined it up perfect!
and his folder to keep his book and other activity papers in

~The Deck~

Check out our (almost) finished deck! I got out my notebook, almost two years ago, and drew out a deck that I wanted to add to our existing porch on the front of our house. I showed Ted, ripped it out, and pinned it to our bulletin board. There it sat. Finally, this spring Ted promised me he would build my deck! Woot woot!! He said as soon as he was done planting he would start. Planting came and went. He said as soon as he was done spraying he would start the deck. Spraying came and went, still not even a glint of maybe starting the deck, because after planting, and after spraying, there is haying. Finally, I let him know that the deck would be done before the baby was here. Meaning if he wasn't going to do it, I was going to hire someone to build it for me. That put a little pep in his step and we made the trip to purchase all of the materials, to the tune of four grand. Yikes, but it would have been MUCH more had I hired someone else to build it.

The deck building was underway, and I was so so SO excited! It was slow at first, but I knew it would be. Getting someone out to mark gas lines and such, then laying out where to put posts, digging the holes (thank goodness for the drill on the skid loader to get this job done fast!), setting the posts, basically getting the foundation of the deck ready to go. Once this was done, and with help from Ted's dad, the deck took on a form and it really went fast. I didn't just sit back and take pictures, I like to get my hands on the tools and help out where I can. I spent one afternoon with the boys screwing down most of the deck boards.

After the floor was in place, Ted got busy on the railing. I took a girls weekend trip and came back to it almost  completed, with most of the railing in place and a beautiful deck to enjoy the rest of the summer and fall on! Still left on the deck is a couple of sections of railing and the railing for the stairs. Thank you, Ted, for the GREAT deck you built me!

August 24, 2011

~A New Recipe~

Despite my lack of posting recipes, I swear I have still been in the kitchen! Our garden was not awesome this year, boo! Cold spring, mixed with a dry, hot summer made for a sorry looking garden. That and the deer found it this year, almost 4 years we have been at this house and the deer left my garden alone. This year, not so much. Even though it was not the best growing year for most of my vegetables, we are having a really good year with our tomatoes. I managed to can 5 pints of salsa this week and hope to do another 5 by the end of the week. I also did good with my basil, it was slow and then took off.

Today for lunch I had a fresh tomato from the garden, with basil from the garden, and fresh locally made mozzarella cheese. Sliced up the tomatoes and cheese, tossed on the basil leaves, drizzled with some EVOO, a little fresh ground salt and pepper, and yummo! It's hard to beat such a simple, fresh, summery treat. For super tonight we grilled some steak, ran out of gas, had to go get more, then grilled some steak. In the meantime, I put together a really great salad. Did I mention my red cabbage also did excellent this year? And that our apples are just starting to get really yummy (and we have a plethora, if you are in the area please come pick some!). I have been craving this great slaw salad, and was excited to be able to use our own cabbage and apples, and then I picked up some locally grown arugula for it as well. If you love red cabbage, like I do, you will love this recipe!

Nutty Apple-Cherry Slaw
4 cups shredded red cabbage
2 cups loosely packed fresh arugula (or watercress, baby spinach, mesclun, etc)
1 medium apple (tart, firm apple), sliced thin or chopped
1/2 cup dried cherries (dried cranberries, currants or raisins work also)
2 TB thin sliced green onion (I left this out, didn't feel like having onion breath)
1/3 cup pumpkin seeds (also good with pecans or walnuts, or a mixture of nuts)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 Tb cider or white wine vinegar
3 Tb orange juice
1 Tb honey
1 1/2 tsp dijon or coarse ground mustard
1/4 tsp salt
dash of cinnamon or nutmeg
Mix well (I have an awesome dressing maker by pampered chef), or use a jar with a lid and shake until well combined.

Mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl, toss with the vinaigrette. You can serve this immediately or put it in the fridge for later.

August 21, 2011

~Mail Organizer~

This has been on my "to do" list for a very long time. There really was not very much sewing on this project, it was mostly glueing and stapling. Yesterday I was looking for something to do, something besides the laundry, dishes, and mess of playdoo to clean up. The mail organizer popped in my head, so I headed out to the barn and found a piece of scrap wood, picked out three different fabrics and got to work. I did somewhat follow this tutorial from the blog noodlehead , but mostly just was winging it. Mine is bigger than the tutorial, and I didn't do the slots exactly the same. Overall it is not perfect, but at least now I finally have my mail organizer and hopefully that means the mail will stop piling up on my kitchen counters!

~Diaper Bag~

I haven't sewn a diaper bag in a while. Well, I take that back, I do have two diaper bags that I am half way done with. I guess better wording would be, I haven't finished a diaper bag in a while! I was recently contacted to make a diaper bag for a super nice mama, that is due with baby number two very soon. She has a son and doesn't know what the next will be, so she was going for something a little more gender neutral. I don't have a lot of "diaper bag material" on hand so after a few searches online, she and I were able to narrow down the choices and finally came up with such a cute combination of fabric. I just love how this bag turned out!