Friday, November 28, 2014

black friday

I normally have all of my Christmas shopping done before Black Friday rolls around, so I don't brave the lines for the deals. Don't get me wrong, I love shopping and I love a deal almost as much, but the crowds don't really appeal to me. I may do some personal shopping online if I find some great deals, but really what I love Black Friday for is having an excuse to eat leftover Thanksgiving dinner for breakfast, catching up on The Voice with Chris and the kids, and being as lazy as we can possibly be.

I'd love to hear what you do for Black Friday. Did you find any great deals?

I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving...or if you're not in America, a fabulous Thursday. Enjoy your Friday!!

megan bird

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

On the long list of what we are thankful for, you are all on it. Thanks for sticking with us over the years, and Happy Thanksgiving!!!

two birds

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

baby bird.i.y: thanksgiving crafts with the kids

Last week, I emailed Megan and told her that for my DIY this week I was going to make one of those turkeys that you create from the outline of your hand. I was joking, of course, but really these aren't that far off. I was feeling less than inspired on the DIY front this week and, since Thanksgiving is tomorrow, I decided to do some holiday-inspired crafts with the kids instead. We did three different projects, all which I found on Pinterest. They were a hit with the kids!

To start off, I gave Mimi a sheet of poster board, some bubble wrap, and some washable Crayola paints. Using a different piece of bubble wrap for each color, she dipped the wrap in the paint and dabbed it on the poster board until it was covered in colorful dots. As you can imagine, she had a lot of fun with this task. Once the paint was dry, we used this decorative poster board for the following two projects.

 (Good music is always important while crafting!)

We made this multi-colored corn wreath by cutting corn cob shapes from the poster board. I then cut some corn leaf shapes out of some fun green scrapbook paper I had on hand. Then we glued the corn into the leaves and glued everything together into a wreath. I punched a hole in the top piece of corn and strung a bit of string through and, VOILA! A multi-colored corn wreath!

Of course, we had to make turkeys! We cut turkey bodies out of construction paper and then attached beaks and googly eyes. Using the rest of the poster board, we cut out feathers and feet and the kids glued them onto the turkey bodies. Mimi's is on the left and Ben's on the right. Cute, right?! (P.S. glue+a 2-year old=a hot mess.)

This last project is my favorite one. We are going to give these to my mom and dad tomorrow. Mom, I know you're reading, so just act surprised when the kids give you your gifts!

"I can't believe you're letting put my fingers in all of this paint!"

While the kids napped, I drew the leafless trees and stenciled the word "Thankful" onto two sheets of poster board. I used some fun chevron sheets, but plain white would be pretty, too. When the kids woke up, they finger painted the leaves onto the trees. As you can see, Ben's is a bit more abstract than Mimi's, but I love them both so much! I hope my parents do, too!

So, there you have it! Three fun and easy Thanksgiving crafts! What do you think?

I hope you all enjoy a very Happy Thanksgiving full of food, family, fun, and naps!

xoxo, nora bird

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

outfit of the day(bird): outfit fake out

sweater~ vintage
skirt~ hand-me-down from Megan
shoes~ BGBGeneration
necklace~ gift from Mother-in-Law

Remember all of those birthday plans I told you about last week? Well, I did go out to dinner with my parents on Wednesday evening and it was lots of fun and very yummy. I went to bed that night happy and with a tummy full of Indian food and woke up around 2:30am feeling sick to my stomach and crippled by nausea. It was awful. I was awake and feeling ill until about 4:30am and felt relatively fine when I woke up again around 7. I just assumed that my dinner hadn't settled well and that was that. I went about my morning normally, bringing Mimi to school and running errands with Ben. I fed Ben lunch around noon and found that I had no appetite but didn't really feel sick. We picked Mimi up from school after lunch and came back and the kids had their naps.  During nap time I started to feel really sick again. I went and lay in bed to read and ended up falling asleep myself. When I woke up, I was chilled to the bone, nauseated, and my stomach hurt really bad. I immediately texted my friend who was planning to come over that night to cancel our plans. When the kids woke up, I turned on cartoons for a while until I felt able to get up and move around. I made a quick dinner for them and bundled myself into a nest of blankets on the couch until Jim got home from work, around 7pm, and promptly went to bed. I was in bed all the next day and most of Saturday. I had to cancel our Friday night plans with Megan and her family. Jim had made some elaborate dinner plans at one of our favorite restaurants for Saturday night which we also cancelled. Luckily, by Saturday afternoon, I was feeling well enough that I suggested that we not cancel our babysitter and, instead of a fancy night out, we just go to a movie, which we did. While it wasn't what I was hoping for, it still turned out to be a fun night. We saw Interstellar and we both loved it. Jim and I almost never get to see movies in the theater together, so it was a special treat. By Sunday morning I felt almost 100% and we ended up seeing my friend that I had cancelled on earlier in the week that morning as well as Megan and her family on Sunday evening. Megan made a delicious homemade dinner that was the first full meal I'd eaten since dinner with my parents on Wednesday. It was far far better than the crackers I had been subsisting on!

And the point of my whole story is that this was the outfit I had planned to wear to dinner with Jim which I ended up trading out for leggings and an oversized sweater for our movie night. I never actually wore this outfit anywhere, but I still made Jim take photos of me in it so I could share them here. Total outfit fake out!

xoxo, nora bird

Monday, November 24, 2014

inspiration monday: don't let the bed bugs bite

the inspiration
Olivia Palermo
megan bird

coat ~ Burlington
shoes ~ Marshalls
leggings ~ ??
necklace ~ Forever 21

nora bird

coat ~ TJ Maxx
leggings ~ Urban Outfitters
shoes ~ H&M
necklace ~ gift from mother-in-law

We went to a wedding on Saturday night. It wasn't too far from our house, but the kids were with us, and Chris' whole family was there, so we decided to get a hotel room. The town the wedding was in is fairly small, and as such, there were no "nicer" hotels in the area. We were stuck booking a room at the local Travelodge. I had never stayed in one before, so I didn't know what to expect. soon as we walked in, all I could smell was smoke. Smoke from the 1970s I can only assume, because that's how stale it was. We quickly (and hesitantly) ran our bags into the room, and immediately headed out to the wedding. 

I will tell you now what not to do after you have checked into a hotel. Don't ever look it up on the hotel bed bug registry because it will disgust you to no end what you are going to read. And at this point, you don't have much of a choice because you've already checked in, and the wedding is in 10 minutes. Also, your stuff is already in the room, so if there are bed bugs, they are already creepy crawling into your clothes.

After a few cocktails, I was feeling slightly better about sleeping in this questionable room (and by questionable, I mean I texted my sisters and told them I was pretty sure they filmed snuff films there). The next morning, we woke up at 7:00, threw all of our items into a plastic bag, drove home, and literally undressed in the entryway. Luggage went into the garage to freeze all winter, kids went into showers, and all the clothes went in the washer/very hot dryer. Hopefully that means we're safe.

Keep your fingers crossed for us!
megan bird

Click here for next week's inspiration picture.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

flying west

Warning: this post is sure to be rambling and wordy and possibly tear-stained.

I have to start talking about this because I am still in a sort of state of shock. Maybe sharing it here, with all of you, will make it seem more real. I'm not quite sure I want it to seem more real. Maybe I can live in my comfortable bubble of denial a bit longer.

No? You're right. I have to talk about it.

Jim, the kids, and I have made a big decision. We are moving out of our little house, the only home our kids have ever known, away from (most of) our family and friends, out of this beloved state of mine, thousands of miles west, to California.

Yes. Jim got a new job and we are moving. To California.

There. I said it.

It still doesn't seem real.

This will all be happening rather quickly and I am sure I will be sharing more as I know more. We won't actually move until sometime after the New Year. Right now we are in the process of putting our house on the market, which is something I have never done and is extremely overwhelming.

For now I just want to enjoy the holidays and spend as much time as possible with my friends and family.

At some point, I will have to put the blog on the back burner for a while and focus on packing and moving and getting settled in an entirely new city. I won't have all my clothes for outfit posts or crafting supplies for DIYs or food for recipe posts. And I will be super busy. I am not sure when exactly that will happen. Megan and I haven't discussed it much as discussing that means talking about my move and that's hard and sad and scary. It's also very exciting and is sure to be a great adventure. I am not feeling all that excited yet, but I will get there. Jim is excited. He is like a kid in a candy store. He is so excited for this new job and new opportunity in a place full of genius nerds just like him (Silicon Valley). And I am really very proud of him and so happy and excited for him. I just haven't gotten excited for me yet. But I will. It will come. Probably about a month or two after we have landed in California. After the initial shock and after getting settled and finding my own way.

The kids? Well, I don't think they really get it yet. It's hard to explain this to kids who are so young, but we are doing our best. It will certainly be an adjustment for them, but kids adapt much easier than us oldies. I know they will be fine and they will love it out there. I have ordered a few books that I hope will help. Did any of you move as kids?

I have already reached out to some of you, but if anyone has any advice on moving to a new state, moving with kids, anything, I would greatly appreciate it! I know a few of you have been there and hearing your experiences and knowing what I am in for would surely help me in this process.

To all of my MN friends and family, I am going to miss you all so much. But this will always be home base. My family is here and we will be back often to visit. I hope to see as many of you as I can before I make the move!

My little snow birds are going to miss that.

But that's pretty darn great, too.

Thanks for listening and letting me put all of this out there!

xoxo, nora bird

outfit of the day(bird): 35

sweater~ Marshall's
leggings~ Heartbreaker
boots~ eBay
socks~ Opening Ceremony
necklace~ gift from Mother-in-Law
hat~ Jim's

Yesterday was my birthday. I turned 35. I have never really been a huge birthday person. Don't get me wrong, I love my birthday and I am happy I have had one every year so far and I really hope to continue having them every year for a very long time! I have just never been one to go all out, celebrate all week, throw a huge party, that type of thing. Mainly, it is just because I really don't like to be the center of attention. You should have seen how much I was sweating at both my bridal and baby showers. It wasn't pretty, people. But this year, because everyone is so busy this time of year and everyone has different schedules and families to take care of and jobs and places to be and my birthday fell smack dab in the middle of the week, I have been having small celebrations all week long. On Monday evening, I had dinner and drinks with a dear friend. Last night, on my actual birthday, my parents took Jim, the kids, and I out for a delicious feast of Indian food. Another lovely friend is coming over tonight for treats and maybe some wine. Megan and her family are having us over for dinner on Friday evening. And Saturday night Jim has something planned which is apparently top secret, so I will have to tell you about that next week! I kind of like this birthday week idea. It's been a really great week and 35 is looking like it will be a year full of big changes and adventure!

Thanks to all of you who wished me a happy day on Facebook and Instagram! I love this blog family of mine.

xoxo, nora bird

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

bird.i.y. framed outlet cover

I have started to run out of ideas for DIYs. Well, not run out of ideas, but rather run out of things that I really need in our house. And even more so, I am running out of "shoot, I need a DIY for the blog, but I need it by tomorrow" ideas. I have plenty of ideas for things I both want and need, but they all take a lot of time, and since I didn't even think about today's blog post until Monday, I couldn't do any of them. Stay tuned for better DIYs.

I'm not trying to be self deprecating, though. The fact of the matter is, I really like today's DIY. I really like the idea, and I like how it turned out. Plus, it was something, that in my head, I really needed, so I consider it a win.

What you'll need:

~ Frame (just the frame, no glass)
~ Exacto knife
~ Contact paper

You see, we have this hideous outlet in our bathroom. First of all, it's crooked, but there's not much I can do about that without electrical knowledge. Secondly, it's just plain ugly. There is a fan switch that we never use, and the old owner apparently just broke part off the outlet to make the fan switch accessible. See...

Also, there's dust. A lot of dust. But that's no one's fault but my own.

So I decided to fix this outlet up a little. 

First things first, I removed the cover.


Second, clean the dust, because that's nasty.

Third, place the frame over the contact paper, and with the exacto knife, cut the paper to fit the frame.

Place the old outlet cover over the cut paper and do the same with the outlet hole.

Then simply place the contact paper over the outlet, and nail the frame to the wall. And just like that, the outlet is pretty, Still crooked, but pretty!

In all honestly, I plan to replace the contact paper with balsa wood. While I like the look of the contact paper, I want something a little more durable. But, for now (because it was too cold to go to Michael's after work to buy balsa wood), I really like this small improvement in our bathroom.

megan bird

PS Everyone wish nora bird the happiest of birthdays!!!!! Love you, Nora!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

outfit of the day(bird): leaky faucets

shirt, jacket, hat, boots ~ thrifted
leggings ~ Forever 21
socks ~ ??

For some reason or other, our kitchen faucet has started dripping. It annoys me to no end, but we have not had the time to repair it (I plan on doing it myself...just to say that I can). Instead, because I can't stand the thought of wasting water, we have put our largest mixing bowl underneath the faucet and collected the water to use for various reasons. We water plants, cook pasta, and even drink the water in the mixing bowl. I just keep a clean measuring cup next to it so I can collect water from the bowl to transfer it where and when I need it.

I assumed everyone else in the family was using the same measuring cup method...until last night when I asked Eva to get Desi some water.

She grabbed his nasty water bowl...the dirty dog bowl that he drinks from after grooming himself daily. The bowl that we rarely clean. The bowl that he laps water from generously after licking who knows where and what on his body. She grabbed his bowl, and stuck the whole thing in clean mixing bowl and promptly brought it back to Desi to drink.

I don't know how many times she has done that. And I don't know how many times right after she did that I grabbed a nice refreshing glass of water from the same bowl. I guess this is my prompt to finally fix the faucet.

megan bird

Monday, November 17, 2014

inspiration monday: lost and found

the inspiration
Naomi Watts

megan bird

entire outfit ~ thrifted

nora bird

blazer ~ b. (a resale shop)
shirt ~ Old Navy
jeans ~ Levis
shoes ~ Sam Edelman
scarf ~ Goodwill

On Friday night after work, we let Desi out in the back yard like any normal night. We were all getting ready to go to our monthly neighborhood party, and he was content outside for a bit. As we were getting ready to walk out the door, I told the kids to let Desi in. Eva ran outside and back in yelling that he wasn't there.

I ran outside to double check and noticed that the gate was open. I immediately threw on some warmer clothes, told the kids to do the same, and we all set out to find him.

3.5 hours later, multiple ads posted online, many phone calls, and over 200 Facebook shares of his photo, we still hadn't found him. I was devastated, and didn't want to stop looking for him. At one point, a runner told me she heard a dog barking in this swampy area of the lake nearby. I ran there, and walked as much as I could before Chris told me to stop. It was dark, that area is known to have coyotes, and as far as we knew, it was a coyote she heard and not Desi. All I could think of was that our 15 year old deaf dog was stuck in freezing water, hidden in the reeds, and I was unable to get to him. Chris finally took the kids home to sleep, and I continued to look. When I could no longer feel my feet, I went home, and Chris calmed me down a bit by telling me that Desi would not have wandered too far, so he must be at someone's home.

We left our front and back gate open in case he headed home, and I woke up every hour to check if he was in the yard. The next morning, I went back to the lake to get a better look in the light of day. And then I slowly (creepily) drove through every alley in a mile radius of our house, hoping that if someone had taken him in, I'd see him in their back yard. About an hour into it, Henry called me and told me that he had been found. It turns out some new neighbors a block away saw him wandering and THANKFULLY took him in for the night.

I was so thankful. We still don't know who or how the gate got open, as it was closed when we left for work that morning, but regardless, we are so thankful to have him back with us. The kindness of neighbors is so huge, and we are so lucky to live in such a great neighborhood where someone will take in a stray dog without asking any questions.

megan bird

For next week's inspiration picture, click here.