Saturday, May 28, 2016


In one week from today my sister will be getting ready to walk down the aisle and become a Mrs.. - I cannot believe it's almost here!  WAHOO!  Wedding week!!!!!

In the meantime...I watched this video a couple times last night and was literally snorting before bed last night I was laughing so hard.  And then when I stopped laughing...I freaking prayed and prayed that my kids would make it down the aisle next week:

(1) with all their clothes on
(2) with minimal screaming (anticipation in some)
(3) and make it down with at least one smile on their face

But seriously - when kids come to the wedding, as long as you have a sense of humor...I do think they make it a little more fun (and humorous)

So then to feed to my ridiculous laughing in bed last night, this was the next video that popped up (from Relationship Facts as well). And for some reason, while I thought the kid video was hilarious...this one just got me.  I mean SERIOUSLY.  Lyndsay----- nothing like this will happen at your wedding.  So let's just enjoy the hilarity of these people (and their misfortune on their own big day)!!!

So cheers to a wonderful week leading up to #foreveraburden

Friday, May 27, 2016

Friday is here!

I'm so excited but seriously - how is it the kick off of Memorial Day weekend and the "official" kick off to summer ALREADY?  Looking back, I have NO idea where the first 5 months of the year have gone.  

My kids have gotten bigger....I have gotten bigger (belly pics to prove it)...and somehow we are almost to the month of June.  Which means a few things:

1. It's SUMMER
2. My sister is getting married in ONE WEEK
3. I'm having a baby in 8 WEEKS

Holy cow to all of those things!


Ok, does anyone else feel like their kids are ALWAYS getting injured?  Or is that just us?  Or maybe just me (because it seems to happen on my watch)....

Jimmy was out of town for 6 days - he came home for like a 4 hour stay on Sunday and then left again for a work trip - and on Monday night by poor Maddie was running with a random glass snowman (who knows why that was out) to show my dad and tripped and fell with it in her hand.  Seriously my worst nightmare.  Glass went flying, she was screaming.  Thank God my parents were over and my mom took screaming Maddie and stopped the bleeding on her upper lift that was cut open and my dad helped keep Charlie away while I picked up all the glass.  The scariest part was when I went to go comfort her and make sure there was no glass in her hands and she unballed her fists and there was a huge cut down the vein in her wrist and on her thumb.  AHHH!  We got it to stop bleeding (thankfully no stitches) but still.  I felt terrible.  She was feeling better though (thank goodness)!

(check out her sweet nose cut - it was worse than the pic looks - at least she still wanted to take fun selfies!)

Then after Jimmy got home...Charlie was getting out of the bath and I was folding laundry on the floor in his room literally RIGHT next to him.  I thought his towel was on the ground...well it wasn't and it was on the hook.  He went to pull it and randomly the hook came out of the wall, he started screaming, I go in there (like 2 ft from where I was sitting) and the hook landed RIGHT on his second toe and it looked like it almost cut it off (I thought it had with the amount of blood).  Thankfully it was just a huge cut and we got the bleeding to calming him my letting him watch a show on our phone and a ninja turtle band aid he was good but limped for a few days.

So yeah, I of course felt like just the worst.  Should I just wrap them up in bubble wrap!?  I want to!


I talked a bit about some nursery progress on my last baby bump post - but we have another exciting project in the kitchen (I asked for your help on wood vs. white cabinets) and I think we've made some progress.  We are going to paint them (!!!) and getting a little crazy, going to paint the island a different color - some sort of aqua.  Our realtor is amazing and redesigns houses and came over with some great suggestions and paint samples and she asked what fun when the painter came over today, he loved it too.  I'm excited to add a little bit of personality to the kitchen through the kitchen island!  Now for the fun part - emptying the cabinets! Ha!

I love this kitchen I found on Pinterest (although our cabinets won't be quite as white because we have off-white trim everywhere).  We will have some accents too in our glass cabinets.  



Going to a memorial day BBQ?  I tried out this recipe that I just got from a delish video (saw it on Facebook a few week ago) and it turned out so pretty and so yummy!  Who doesn't love bacon either?  If you are looking for something different and delicious....try it out!  I just followed the video (while no specific measurements) and it turned out awesome!

My finished version:

Super fancy, huh?  Well that and super easy and delicious!


Since it's kicking off summer officially - here are a few "signs of summer" from our house lately.

Popsicle's and no shirts are the best combo!

Wagon adventures with big cousins are SO.MUCH.FUN.  They went all over with Ben and Kenlie while in the wagon at Grana and Pop's.  Seriously, big cousins are the best.

More selfies....

..and more Popsicle's....

And gorgeous peonies from my mother-in-law's garden!

Oh and running in the sprinklers (we've already done this twice!  YEAH!)

However, if you follow me on IG, you know the video of Maddie FREAKING out when she actually got hit by water.  She sat the rest of the time on dad's laugh.  It was hilariously sad :)


Finally, almost to the ONE WEEK countdown until my sister's wedding.  I'm starting to write my speech and OMG - let's just say I am a freaking crying mess every time I start write something or add something or think of something new.  Little sister getting married in general + 32 weeks pregnant = a speech that I can't make it through without bawling.  Lord help us.

I CAN'T WAIT!!!  It's finally almost here! #foreveraburden

Happy Friday!

Linking up with:

Sept Farm | Oh hey Friday!
A. Liz Adventures | Five on Friday
Momfessionals | Friday Favorites 

31/32 weeks - who knows, right?

My goofy smile is the result of my ridiculous photographer.  Hahaha.  He loves taking these pictures.

How Far Along?  I'm not sure but I CANNOT remember/keep up/get it right how pregnant I am.  WHAT.IS.WRONG.WITH.ME.  I posted this picture in the doctor's office on Instagram at my Tuesday appointment:

I originally said I was 32 weeks pregnant.  Then someone was like "omg 32 weeks!" and then I was like - wait, am I?   Checked my bump app and saw 31, but apparently missed the "...and five days" because then I was like, wait, I'm only 31.  So then I took my bump picture for the week (or Jimmy did) and put the 31 week artwork and then I was like - WAIT - I feel like the baby has been a pineapple before.  Sure enough, recheck the app and I was 32 weeks on Thursday.  Get a grip and the timing straight.

But just for fun because for some reason I'm in the same room at the same week of my pregnancy and took pretty much the same exact picture and posted it to my IG.  And people were just as nice (seriously, I've decided I'm going to post a bump shot when I'm feeling down because people are all like "oh my gosh, so cute" and I'm all like're so sweet) this time around as they were when I was pregnant with Maddie!  But for real - check out that bump.  

Size of Baby: about the size of an squash (16.6 in and 3.75lbs - keep growing!!!!); no wonder this kid seems to be running out of room!

Gender: It's a SURPRISE - I'm getting SUPER anxious to find out boy or girl!  I have been fine up to this point and now I cannot wait!!!

Weight Gain: Slightly over the 25lb mark and feeling large and in charge.

Nursery: I took off last Friday afternoon because I was getting a little anxious that the dresser that I bought a while back on a local Facebook swap and shop still needed to be painted... here is the cherry color it was before.

And here is the yellow color after the first coat.  It looks so much better after 2 coats and I still need Jimmy to seal it (the seal fumes are too much and not good for me)...but I'm getting super excited!  It's going to be the perfect accent piece.

Unfortunately, when I asked Jimmy to bring the crib upstairs (in the right of the picture)...he somehow misplaced the hardware.  Oh, well that's not cool.  So no he's on the hunt for it and actually has started replacing it.  While the babe won't sleep in it for awhile, it's kind of important.

I still need to finish cleaning out the closet completely, but am getting there!  Build a few book shelves and find some fun wall art and call it a day, right?  I was looking for something to put on the wall where the crib will go, but something not-so-permanent and Vanessa suggested the Urban Walls website for wall decals and I think I found a few that I really like!  So we are getting there.  Luckily, I know the babe won't be using it for awhile so I'm not stressing out :)

Movement: While I love and hate it (only when it's at like 2AM), this baby is moving lots and I'm not going to lie...I love it more than I hate it.  It makes me know that he/she is doing good in there.  Also, seriously cannot believe that I have 8 more weeks to go because I'm already wondering where it is going to go!

Symptoms: Oh you know, normal 32 week stuff.  I can literally feel my stomach stretching (and it hurts), varicose veins, horrible heartburn.  But doctor keeps saying it's a healthy baby, so I can make it...I can make it!  

Oh and SOOOOO tired.  Like literally.  I am back to falling asleep with Charlie in bed at like 7:45 and don't want to get up.  I cannot make it!  However, then I spend like 2 hours awake at night.  Baby sleep prep I guess!

Sleep:  This is where I'm running into trouble!  I wake up and pee usually once and literally cannot go back to sleep!  My mind is all over the place about the most random things.

Cravings: I would drink a slushie (from Sonic) everyday if I could.  But I don't.

What I Miss: Remember that time a few months ago when my belly button still existed? haha! 

Best Moment This (these) Week(s): I'm loving the nursery coming together and that the kids already identify the room as the "baby's room" and want to go in there.  They are so sweet and Maddie likes to kiss my stomach non-stop.  Lots of my up-at-night-thinking goes to how sweet and crazy it's going to be 2 years from now when all my kids are 2 years older.  Hard to imagine but I'm just loving how Charlie and Maddie are playing together and can't wait to add another to bunch!

Panic Moment This Week:  Reading this article :) #ourlifetocome

Looking Forward To:  MY SISTER IS GETTING MARRIED NEXT WEEK! Oh my goodness.

Friday, May 20, 2016

School pictures: 2016

Instead of a Five on Friday - how about five school pictures of my babes?

We got these back (finally) this week and while they are not just amazing, I thought they were pretty cute.  We even got both of their class pictures too- which is fun to have as a keepsake to look back at the friends they were in daycare/preschool with!

My favorite things about them:
- Maddie looks so sweet and innocent - DO NOT let her fool you.  Ha.  But she is very sweet!
- Charlie's goofy teeth smile
- Charlie's hands on his pictures - he was hilarious and showed me 12 times after school on picture day how they wanted him to place his hands - hilarious
- The picture of the two of them of course...because I mean they really look like they like each other, right?

I am struggling if I want to get someone to take some pictures of us while we are still just a family of four (I better make that decision fast, right?) because I really do need some new-ish pics of the kids and got maternity pics with both of my kiddos.  Mainly I just want two good pictures of our kiddos with their real smiles (and not so much forced if possible) and one good picture of our family of 4 for memory purposes - because as we all know, once this babe comes, all new pictures!!  Wahoo!!!

Happy Friday!!  I have been busy organizing this afternoon and getting my paint on in the baby's room for the dresser.  Love checking stuff off the list!  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Props to my husband

Surely you have seen this string of text messages from a dad to the mom about the kid puking, having to clean it up and him puking on the side of the road AND then the lady's lawn he was puking on calling the cops and having to do a breathalyzer???  ***Ok - wait, so now he is saying that well...he really didn't have anyone call the cops or take a breathalyzer and was just being super dramatic for his wife - I have to say, I like this guys even better now because guess what?  I do the same thing to Jimmy #mightbealittleoverdramatic ***

I saw the story when it first came out when Baby Rabies posted it on her facebook feed and literally started crying I was laughing SO hard.  It was literally uncontrollable laughter.  And a bit of sympathy laughter too!

Poor guy (and kid for throwing up in the first place!), but seriously, I had this draft in my posts for about 2 weeks now and was getting around to posting it and yep, this goes right along very well (I guess unfortunately!?!?).

Let me start off by saying that my husband, Jimmy, is officially a super hero to me.  Especially after he's been gone for 6 days and I've been taking care of these kids solo with one in my big belly.  I swear, there might not be anything harder to me than getting the kids out the door on time in the morning.  WHY!?  And after doing it for 3 days in a row...I will say I did progressively get better and more efficient and decreased my lateness to work time each day (yes, I did track that myself).  But he does it every morning.  While, yes, I do help with lots of things, like helping to get them dressed, I usually make the breakfast for them both, he is the one that ultimately gets their shoes on and out the door.  Which you think that would be easy right.  But when I leisurely walk out the door at 7AM, mug of hot lemon water and purse in hand - what I quickly realized after this week and after this string of text messages... never know what can happen between when the time mom walks out the door and when you drop them off at daycare/preschool.  Never.

Because on this morning, I walked out, drove my normal drive to work alone enjoying my drink and the radio and walked into work around 7:20AM and started my day.  Nope, not stressful getting out the door once I pulled out of the driveway.

Jimmy on the other hand...poor guy.

I got this text message from him below that Maddie was SO upset with him because I don't even know why.  Likely it was that he asked her to go potty (how dare he) or that he put on her shoes (seriously, worst dad ever)...or that he asked her to walk out to the car (I mean if that's not child abuse...). 

Anyways, she was screaming so upset and Jimmy got her into the car seat and then went over to buckle Charlie in and just like that - she threw up.  From crying.  And I'm pretty sure she had cereal that morning.  And maybe some oatmeal.  And of course a big glass of milk.  Yuck, yuck yuck.

Just read to see what he said.  And of course he felt horrible because like any rational adult, he was likely frustrated with the situation (versus Maddie herself) and got mad.  I mean - I would have flipped out.  And vomited.  And maybe cried because I cannot handle things like this.  Especially before work.  No way.

He handled it like a champ though, like I said, super dad.

My favorite part of the text string might be the fact that he accidentally typed "cat" versus "car" and envisioning Charlie buckled into the car seat right next to her screaming "get me out!!!  I'm gonna throw up".  Don't get me wrong - I felt absolutely horrible for him, but was laughing and screen shotted this and sent to my mom and sister to tell them if they thought their day was off to a bad start - couldn't be as bad as Jimmy's.  And they both immediately asked "Wait.  You have a cat?" (no we don't - just a typo).

Of course when I picked the kids up - Charlie went into Maddie's room with me and told her teachers how she threw up in the car this morning - and then I was stuck explaining she really was NOT sick, it was just an "upset-I'm almost 2 and can't handle life-probably couldn't breathe I was screaming so hard/loud" throw up.  Not sure if they bought it, but needless to say, she wasn't sick so thanks a lot Charlie!!

The point of this story besides forcing you to read about the now viral post famousish guy and hopefully getting a good laugh envisioning poor Jimmy's to say.  Here's to you parents that are the day care/school/preschool dropper-offers.  If I could drink alcohol, I would literally cheers to you because...FOR REAL..the fact that you make it out of the house every morning with alive and well children and you have not gone insane means you deserve a medal.  I'm serious.

And now that Jimmy's back in town and is back to his normal taking the kids to school role, this mama couldn't treasure more the fact that I'm lucky enough to get to walk out the door and worry about the stress of my day at work without having to pile on top of that getting everyone out the door and on time.  For real.

And for Jimmy - thank you thank you thank you.  For taking the morning drop off every day like a champ.  While pick up is stressful some days as well, I'll take that any day of the week.  Love you!

Monday, May 16, 2016

Mom balance - HOW for a Monday

A little about real life mothering for you on a Monday.

Thursday night I was tired.  My mind was already into Friday when Jimmy was gone and I was taking care of my little humans alone while carrying my third sweet baby in my growing stomach.  He was here and I help given baths and already put Maddie to sleep.  I had just sat down to watch Nashville from the night before and just wanted a break.  We went out to dinner and the three of us met Jimmy there after work- Maddie cried the whole way there, refused to let me put on her socks and shoes, then when I got her out of her car seat- she had peed her pants and then fought me when i attempted to put on new undies and shorts (which luckily I had!). I was frustrated.  And when I sat down to tell Jimmy about my frustration he looked at me and said "Hate to tell you this babe, but it's going to get harder before it gets easier".  To my face! Ha! How dare he speak those blunt truths.  But he was so right at that moment I wanted to start bawling but contained myself as we were in a restaurant.  So yeah, I thought I deserved some me time watching a show I wanted to watch for 40 min. 

Jimmy put Charlie down and went downstairs.  Then almost immediately I hear Charlie's door open and he comes into my room and walks up to the couch I'm on and knocks over my cup of water. I'm immediately frustrated and ask him "why?!?" while I get the towels to clean it up. He is upset because I'm upset and starts crying.  I don't console him but just clean up the mess and tell him to go get his dad.  Then I yell and tell Jimmy he needs to finish putting Charlie to bed because I "have to" by myself the next week.  Charlie (still crying) finally calms down and Jimmy gets him to sleep. 

I sit down to watch my show that was oh so important and get on social media.  And then I see this.

And then immediately feel like the worst mom in the world.  Seriously. Anyone else have those moments? I mean it's right- how for a split second could I not just stop and go lay down with him.  Those are my favorite moments.  And if I ever made him feel like he wasn't worth my time, I would just want to die I would feel so horrible.  All I could think was "I'm so glad he cannot write yet!!!" mainly because he would have probably written a note telling me "Mom, I'm never ever going to to play with you again" (as he often threatens when he gets mad at me).

Then on Friday morning we wake up to find out that one of our friend's from church had to have their little man who is younger than Maddie rushed to the ER due to seizures and not responding - OMG.  And I had the audacity to desire 40 minutes alone last night?  I couldn't take it.  But then the other part of me is saying - but HELLO - you need a break too, mama.  Right?  Can I get an amen?  We all need a break every once and a while...I guess it's just finding the balance between it all?  And not attempting to beat ourselves up through negative self-talk along the way about the moments and time we do take to recharge as moms (and parents in general).

But HOW!??  Almost 4 years into this thing called parenting...I have no idea how to find that balance and I won't pretend like I do.  So what I'm going to tell you is that if you ever feel like you're the worst mom ever - you are not alone.  I feel like I've lost my temper one too many times in the last few weeks and I'm not sure why, but then I read articles like this on the Internet and I know they are meant to be encouraging me to really spend quality time with my kids and treasure these moments - and dammit, I do try to do that all the time.  But for some reason so many times they make me just feel bad that I'm doing something or thinking something wrong as a mom.  My guess is though, so many of us feel the same way that I do.

And if it makes you feel any better (and to mom-shame myself one more time...), after leaving the store with my two in tow on Saturday and we got to the car and I realized Maddie had kicked off just one of her awesome pink Nike tennis shoes and of course I didn't notice when it happened or had any idea where to even look in the huge store - I got in my mini van and started crying (WHY!?!  It's a shoe - I'm chalking it up to pregnancy hormones) and Maddie kept yelling "MOMMY, MOM, MOM!" at me like non-stop.  I snapped and legit told my not even 2 year old to shut up.  I'm horrible I know.  I immediately felt terrible.  And then felt even worse when Charlie goes "Mom, if you tell Maddie to shut up one more time you're going to have to go to time out because that's not very nice.  You're a bad mom".  OH.MY.GOODNESS.  Seriously child?  Cue the "I really am a bad mom pity party tears".  Sheesh.  

But then you know what?  I told myself that SERIOUSLY, there was nothing wrong with me, I'm just a mom of two littles that is trying my hardest.  And the fact that I'm trying my best to love them just as much as I can - that's enough.  I'm enough for them.  Even despite if I literally lose it every once and awhile.  Because both of them kissed me a million times later that day, gave me hugs, told me they loved me and Charlie fell asleep with his arm wrapped around my neck.  

So there.

You are not alone anytime you feel like you're the worst.

You're not the worst.

You are the best mom.


Just take a deep breath.

And then think of something sweet or super funny that your kids do.

And then you're remind yourself immediately why this crazy journey called parenting we are on is worth every second, every heartache and worry, the lack of sleep, the lack of felling like you know ANYTHING about ANYTHING (because you quickly find out you don't - but then you roll with it), every laugh, every tear, every tantrum, every meal you make that is not actually eaten, every potty mess you clean up, and every single damn toy you clean up every single night.

Yes, it's worth it.

So hang in there mama.  I'm with you on all those feelings, so remember that when you feel like you're the only one.  Which that alone feeling can sneak up on us all too often sure.

And just for fun:


And for real....


Friday, May 13, 2016

It's Friday and mid-May...

I cannot believe that it is already mid-May.  What happened to the time and this spring?  And I'm 30 weeks pregnant?  Seriously people #timeisFLYING

But I'm so freaking glad it's Friday!!

Here are a few things on my mind for a Friday.


Ok so I'm NOT a music person.  But my husband - it's his thing.  He's always on the hunt for the next big song and of course let's me know.  This JT song that was released on May 6?  I have to agree with him, it's pretty dang catchy for summertime or really ALL the time.  It's amazing.  Seriously JT - you've done it again.

Do yourself a favor and take a listen - I promise you can't help but dance!!!!  A hit this summer for sure.  Good call, Jimmy!


Speaking of SUMMER time (which can't you just taste?) - anyone else love Quik Trip and their 79 cent fountain drinks?  I know I seriously get excited about this every year - but it's already in full swing and I love it.  

Now if they only had a drive thru....because going in and taking my 2 kids into get a fountain drink is not only crazy town, but also expensive because they have all these great suckers and snacks and ninja turtle drinks and slushies and doughnuts and pretty much #everythingkidslove


You know when you are perusing Facebook and you see some ad for a small business?  Well I stumbled onto something the other night and LOVED it.  And even better they had some amazing stuff on sale.  Check out Smallwood home and their wood signs - they are pretty awesome!

I ordered this sign and cannot wait to get it - and at 50% off...nothing better!

source/order link


I'm on an INSANE nesting kick.  Well more like I want to organize every inch of my house.  I need to take a chill pill.  Some of the things are new baby related and other places are just space that we have thrown things in and haven't been organized in a long time (seriously though, how do people keep up with all these rooms/areas to organize and KEEP organized).

This week?  I cleaned out the deep freeze and our two refrigerator freezers, cleaned out Charlie's closet, cleaned out the nursery closet and moved all the wrapping paper stuff to the buffet in the dining room and now I'm fixated on finding a better way to organize our pantry.  UGH.  I mean I'm not sad about it, but seriously it's like the only thing I can think about #organizeeverythingallthetime

I love these pantry ideas off Pinterest (we have a small walk in pantry - with wire shelves and a random dog door in there - that is not used because our dog is too big...but really - who wants to leave the pantry door open to let the dog in and out anyways...ha!).  So someone want to take down my wire shelves, paint it and then hang up wood shelves with a bigger shelf to permanently store store some of our bigger kitchen appliances?  Ok done!

I love this one a LOT! (ours is not this wide though!!)
I like this one - nothing fancy but with a nice shelf!!
It's fun to dream right?!?!  Now if I could just bend down and not want to scream in pain :)


What is a five on Friday without a picture of my kiddos?  We are kicking off a fun weekend together - no big plans, but fun stuff to do and a birthday party to attend.  Soaking in my time with these two crazy kids until we add one more of them to the mix.

And seriously - can I get an "amen" to this real life picture?  This was the best one I could find that I snapped this week.  These kids - only one of them dressed (it's usually both of them), eating fruit out of the bowls, toys ALL over...yep, sounds about right.  Oh and what you can't see is that Maddie attempted to put on her own underwear and her cheeks were hanging out.  Oh Lord.

Wishing you a happy Friday and a weekend filled with not very many plans but a whole lotta fun.

Linking up with:

Sept Farm | Oh hey Friday!
Carolina Charm | Five on Friday
Momfessionals | Friday Favorites 

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Parade of homes and wood vs. white!

Ok in this with HGTV and now Chip and JoAnna obsession that is going everywhere- have you caught the "must have all fun home ideas" bug yet?

Well the good news here, I'm not about to tell you anything fun and new, but what I will show you is some amazing pictures of houses on the Kansas City Spring 2016 homes parade that I went to over the last few weeks.   

Do you have something of the sorts in your area?  If you do - I highly suggest you take an afternoon, whole day or even a couple of days to go through all the homes.  I LOVE it.  My mom, sister and I have literally been going through the model homes on the homes tour my whole life.  I love those memories so much - and I'm guessing much of that had to do with the fact that I was bound and determined to become an architect when I set off to college (that all changed REALLY fast, as that is not my personality....).  But my love for walking through all the models, looking at the different floor plans and especially all the fun furniture and staging that has been done.  Hands down one of my favorite "me time" pastimes.  So when the time came around this year - I made sure Jimmy knew I needed some mama  only time and took advantage. 

What's nice is that we had 7 within my neighborhood - only 5 were done/furnished - so that was a quite get away.  The other few I was able to visit (including a $2.8MM dollar home that one of my friend's from high school's fiance builder built and designed - it was amazing) I actually went on my day off last Friday as I was running other errands around town.  While I love going with my mom and sister more, we just weren't able to get all our schedules to sync at the same time - I mean, it's not like my sister is getting married in 3 weeks or anything :)  

Here are some of my favorite pictures I felt like I needed to share - so if you like this kind of stuff, enjoy.  If not, so sorry!

I LOVE the stone on the front porch so much and the big beams had me swooning.

Anyone else absolutely just love the "loft" space in a lot of the 1.5 story homes?  I do - so much.  We have one at my parents house and while for sure not as fancy as this one, my sister and I spent a lot of time up there playing school, playing nintendo, and doing all things that little kids do.  That was even the housing spot of some of our rodent pets before my mom and dad let us get a dog (just an FYI - I'll just stick with dogs - no rodents here hopefully!).  

But this loft was to die for and the staging was on point.  It made me want to move right in...especially as our kiddos get bigger...and have a fun family space on the upstairs.

And these doors?  No caption needed.  Except Jimmy HATES them, so we won't be getting them in our house any time soon :)

And of course what was going to make a splash in the homes this year??  Shiplap!  I loved this shiplap wall going down to the basement in one of the reverse 1.5 models in my neighborhood.  I snapped this for Vanessa actually because I know her deep love!  Told her she must see this house!

Ok and this also seemed to be a trend - of course in the fancier houses I expected it (you know the +$700K ones), but this was in a pantry of one of the models in my neighborhood.  I loved the little sink and built in coffee bar/appliance bar within the pantry - so nice to be able to have a mess in there and close the door.  But the warming oven in there totally threw me for a loop - so fancy!!  Some of the bigger houses had a whole separate prep kitchen in the pantry which was amazing!

So our basement is not finished and won't be for a long time, but I love love love looking at finished basements and I thought this was one was so awesome and just made you want to throw a party in it or have a family movie night.  I loved the bar area and there was a separate wine cellar for you fancy wine people too.

One of the coolest things (that you probably cannot see) is that the windows from the inside bar opened up and went right to the outside bar.  So if you were having a party and serving your drinks from the inside bar, you could just open up the windows and serve your guests.  I loved that!!

To finish off the houses in my neighborhood, I visited one literally down the street from me that my neighbor girls and I call the "space ship" because it was HUGE and had a big atrium ceiling.  Well I went inside and it was very woodsy feeling - the bummer part is that it backs up to a semi-busy street - it would be even more perfect it was nuzzled up in the woods.  It was open - more wood than I would have liked - but my favorite part was the hidden little attic half door in one of the kids rooms.  That was me and my sister's favorite thing in houses we would go into when we were younger - finding those little hidden rooms or built in playhouses that some of the builders would make.  We would both sprint upstairs and pick "our room" and be so excited to find one of those hidden gems.

The following Friday, I took the day off and made my way a little further away to visit the most expensive home on the KC Spring homes parade - it was AMAZING.  It was right by our old house, so it was fun to be back in that area but  I literally don't think you would ever have the need to leave this house.  Ever.  It had everything. An exercise room, sauna, movie theater, pool, pool house, garage attic, elevator, pool table/bar, outside seating, prep kitchen, home office.  What more do you need, right?

And this view wasn't too shabby either!

Randomly I snapped a picture of one of the what seemed like 20 mud room areas.  I'm positive even with all the coats and items we have we could not come close to filling any of those.

Sorry to let you down - but that was all I snapped at that house because I think I was just in awe.

And then I made my way to far south KC and went to some amazing homes out there.

I especially loved this kitchen set up.  Amazing!!

I already mentioned my love for finished basement and someday we will have one when our kiddos get a bit older and we don't love the unfinished space for bounce houses and indoor race tracks - but this bar was amazing.  Jimmy would have died!

And this view?  Seriously.  I want this in my backyard.

There were so many amazing ideas and I just love seeing all the different plans that the builders come up with some much, they are so creative and some of the uses of space within the house are just brilliant while others I wasn't a huge fan of, but I love the variety.  I dream of having half the decorating talent of the people that stage the homes too - while my house will never look that picked up and perfect (nor do I want it to), I love to picture our family in each of those houses with kids running everywhere and everything well kept - but like I said, it's a mind picture!

Ok - so enough with that.  And onto a question.  Wood vs. white kitchen cabinets (well really off-white in our case).  We have gotten the bids and are moving forward.  I've asked our realtor to come over this weekend to help give me advice (because she flips houses and they are amazing).  But do you LOVE an awesome wood finish or the classic white?  I'm leaning towards biting the bullet and having them paint them all.  We have  a TON of cabinets so it's not a fast and easy task, but the guy we hired we've heard is great and is up to the challenge. 

This is what our kitchen looks like now:

And this is what I'm thinking it will look like come mid-June:
anyone else obsessed with @whimsygirldesign on instagram?  These are her kitchen!  I love her and it's our same granite and what will be what I'm thinking for our new wall color....

Thoughts?  I've been researching, pinning, dreaming about it and trying to make the ultimate decision.  Let's just say regardless - somehow our lower level is going to get a complete makeover and I'm so excited we saved our money to do this.  Because while we won't be taking any big vacations this year due to baby #3, Jimmy and I love ourselves a nice little house project  - especially one we don't have to do the work ourselves!!!

Let me know what you think!!!