Brynley is 2

I love the chance to reflect on my children each year on their birthday. A time to think about their strengths, their struggles (and mine), and about what they add to my life.

Since Brynley was born so close to Christmas, her birthday sometimes gives me even more cause to reflect–to wonder at the Christ child and the meaning of that birth.

But this post is about Brynley–my sweet, energetic, stubborn, and adorable 2-year-old. This past year has brought so much change to our family with four moves, but Brynley had handled it really well. She loves her sister so much, and as long as they’re together she’s happy. In so many of the photos I’ve taken of her this year, she’s looking sideways to see what Saige is doing. She just wants to be like “Dage.”

She loves water, dirt, the beach, Tiny Baby, playing with Saige, and kitty cats.

She also has a stubborn side. For instance, she had a handful of words she’d say, but no matter how much we encouraged her, she refused to say much. I wasn’t too worried because I knew she could make the sounds and she was constantly chattering, so we just waited. Then one day she said, “Iwan zhoos, Mama.” (I want juice, Mama.) I looked down at her, and almost couldn’t help laughing because she was just holding out on us until SHE wanted to talk.

She didn’t really start talking much for a couple of months after that, but about the time we moved to Idaho, she decided it was time. New words every day; sentences all the time. Now she talks up a storm every day, and many of the things she says crack me up–not to mention her cute tiny voice. Her big personality is so vibrant and full. The other night I was helping her with the family prayer, and she had to sneak in to bless us with “cake and cookies.”

And a description of Brynley this year wouldn’t be complete without her daredevil climbing, her fearlessness, her determination, and her energy. We spent some good time at the parks in California, and she’s never met a slide she didn’t like–no matter how high or fast they are. And she’s determined to go wherever Saige goes, which sometimes scares me. Good thing Saige isn’t naturally a daredevil!

After watching her run and climb and for a while, my Uncle Steven (who has 5 kids) quietly commented, “We never had one like her…” It made me laugh. She’s definitely one of a kind, and I couldn’t love her more!

Missing You

Hello there, friends! I have missed being here and knowing that I’m losing contact with many of the readers I gained here at This Mabey Heaven.

That being said, please, please, please come join me at Mabey She Made It
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Some of my favorite (and most popular) recent posts have included this tutorial for turning low-rise pants into a jean skirtIMG_4906

Finding some really cool ideas for repurposing a tea cup and saucer
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And this darling tunic dress I made for Brynley (those cowboy boots kill me!)Lime Tunic 2I’ve set up an e-mail subscription form in the sidebar, and I’d LOVE it if you would subscribe (or follow me on BlogLovin’, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest–all the links are in the sidebar).

See you there!

For Chad

IMG_0238For as much as I love words, I have a hard time expressing myself when it matters most. And so as I reflect on what my sweet husband means to me, please know that my words fall very short.

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My sweetheart; my love; my best friend. You put up with me and my many flaws. You put up with my poor communication, and you try to help me improve. You put me back together when I’m a mess over something insignificant and comfort me over the significant things. You support me in my projects, and somehow forgive me when I go overboard. I can’t thank you enough for all these things. Your sacrifices and efforts are not lost on me.

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You are the kind of dad that your girls adore. You give them the discipline they need and the kind of love they dream about all day long. You give them direction, opportunities to grow, and the means for all of us to live comfortably. You are so loved.

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I know I fall short often, but life would be You’re the leader of Team Mabey, and we’d all be lost without you. Happy Birthday and Happy Father’s Day. You really are the best!

A New Blog to Explore

It’s been quiet here, but not because I haven’t been busy blogging. You see, I’ve been feeling torn for a while because my blog didn’t seem to have a defined purpose and I’d never given real expectations to myself or to you. I wanted to

  1. Deconstruct, clarify, and start fresh.
  2. Separate some of my more personal posts from the crafting ones. That’s not to say there won’t be some cross-over, but I’ll feel more organized knowing that there’s a clear delineation and expectation for what will be on which blog.
  3. Create a second blog for the crafting posts. I love the name “This Mabey Heaven,” and while it’s perfect for family things, it’s not as direct or clear a name for crafting. I was brainstorming for a new blog name, and when “Mabey She Made It” came to mind, I knew instantly what I wanted to do. This Mabey Heaven will become a personal blog (which you’re welcome to continue following) while Mabey She Made It will contain my crafting endeavors.

So with that explanation, I hope you’ll come check out

Mabey She Made Itand tell me what you think!

Half Moon Bay

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half moon bay, california, beach, family adventureOne of the things I like about being in a new area is discovering some of the things that there are to do. And one of the first things I wanted to do was to spend some time in Half Moon Bay. The name is so fabulous, I couldn’t help but need to go.

We’re really only about 12 miles from the ocean, but it takes 30-45 minutes to get to the beach, which isn’t bad. So on Saturday we packed up the girls for a half-day adventure.

We drove up the coast for a little while to see where we wanted to stop. We passed state beaches and found a spot where you can just walk down to the beach. We got our stuff and headed down.

We got to the sand, and Saige hated it. She wanted Chad to carry her. We got a sheet put down, and then slowly she got used to it. Brynley was pretty much okay with it from the start, but that didn’t surprise us since she likes the dirt so much.

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It was so beautiful. A bright blue sky, the sound of the ocean, and a nice breeze.half moon bay, california, beach, family adventure

The water was cold though and the girls didn’t like it much.half moon bay, california, beach, family adventure half moon bay, california, beach, family adventure

There were a few tiny shells and the girls had a fun time picking some shells to take home.half moon bay, california, beach, family adventure half moon bay, california, beach, family adventure

After an hour or two, the winds picked up and the fog rolled in. So we packed up and went to find some lunch. We’d heard rave reviews about Barbara’s Fish Trap so we got some fish ‘n chips and sat outside to enjoy them. half moon bay, california, beach, family adventure, fish n chips

By the time we finished eating, the fog was thick and the fog horns were regularly sounding. It was beautiful in its own way.half moon bay, california, beach, family adventure, fog, harbor It was such a fun way to spend the morning, and without being too overwhelming or a big deal. We’ll definitely be back soon!

First Home Project

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When we came and looked at renting this house, I did a rush job of looking around. The current tenants were at home, and I felt awkward looking in closets and bathrooms with them there. So when we left, I had a general impression of the house, but really couldn’t remember any specifics–except that the front room was salmon pink. Including the ceiling. And the mantle was painted orange.

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Before signing the lease, we made sure we got permission to paint the room. And when we got here, I remembered how much it needed to be painted.

If you follow me on Instagram (mabeylisa) or we’re Facebook friends, you’ve probably already seen some of these photos. But they warrant another showing.

So here we have the salmon pink. It’s a bit much. Add in the late afternoon light, and I felt like I was drowning in pink. And the orange really wasn’t the same undertone as the pink, so it looked worse than the photo captures.

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For a self-proclaimed color snob, it was painful. We really didn’t even put anything in the room and I refused to unpack decor until we did something with it. After putting the girls to bed, to took us three evenings to get two coats on the walls and ceilings, but man, what a difference it made!salmon pink, paint, home improvement, living room, mantel salmon pink, paint, home improvement, living room, mantel

I started with a color palette that I thought would represent this area well as well as remaining something that the owner wouldn’t object to. I landed on this aqua color (Sherwin-Williams Watery) as a nod to the ocean. What I didn’t realize was how complex the color is. It’s sometimes more blue and sometimes more aqua which I was worried about at first, but that I love now. It reminds me of the ocean in that facet.

I wanted to accent it in citrus colors since California has so much citrus. Lemons, limes, and pink grapefruit were just about perfect shades to go with the aqua. It’s fresh, light, and airy. I love it.salmon pink, paint, home improvement, living room, mantel, aqua paint, aqua

And while so far I’ve only decorated the mantel (ha!), I’m moving on to other areas. It’s slow progress, but I find that I’m still defining and refining my style. And I like the creative exercise of trial and error.

Remember When I Was a Papercrafter?

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I really learned to love paper crafting during my time there. And when I went to Colorado I didn’t take any paper with me since I couldn’t take much. And I really missed it.

So one of the first things I wanted to do when I got my things unpacked was to make a card. Chad gave me the perfect reason to make a card when a co-worker was headed to surgery. So I grabbed a piece of patterned paper that grabbed my attention and started creating. It felt really good to bring together bits and pieces of paper, stamps, ribbon, and ink. There’s nothing like making a card for a quick satisfying project to get your creative juices going again after way too long.

I loved the outcome so much I needed to make another (similar) version just for fun. Subtle differences, but I think they really feel different.scrapbooking, card making, sympathy card, stamps, stampin up

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