a little royal wedding party

Last night I had two very wonderful friends over to watch the Royal Wedding. They arrived around 1:00 a.m. and we had a such a sweet time together. I tried to sleep beforehand, but I only managed to get about an hour of sleep because I was so giddy with excitement with all the preparations.

There was food to prepare, tulle to hang, and British flags and party favors to make. Yes, I know it seems a little over the top. I even planned an outfit to wear--a blue dress and black cardigan sweater like Kate wore when she and William announced their engagement.

LinkBy the way, this is the best scone recipe ever!
And if you don't like lavender or Earl Grey, you can easily substitute them with another flavor.

Here are the favors.
The blue gem and foil are supposed to be Diana's sapphire ring.
I was a little disappointed that the tea bags were yellow, because they didn't go with my color scheme of red and blue.
But I was so relieved to see that the Queen wore yellow to the wedding...perfect!


princess jenny

Do any of you have Royal Wedding plans? I certainly do, but nothing spectacular. I think I'll stay up tonight and watch it live. I'll bake/make a couple of things off of this site--a royal wedding-inspired menu by Epicurious.

Just last night I went into World Market to buy culinary lavender for my scones. When the clerk glanced down at my items, she said, "Ooh, are you having a royal wedding party?" All I could do was shrug, giggle and say, "Um, yes."

I feel kind of foolish about it, maybe a little girlish, too, but I just can't help it! Diana was married two days after my 7th birthday--the perfect age for a little girl to be enamored with princesses and weddings.

I remember it so vividly. We lived in San Francisco and watched it on T.V. the following morning. For months after, I played Diana. I took my Strawberry Shortcake bedspread, gathered it around my neck and walked down our stairs, pretending it was my wedding train trailing behind me. I played tennis outside pretending I was on my honeymoon. I'm not sure if she played tennis on her honeymoon, but apparently that's what I thought people did on their honeymoons. I called myself Princess Jenny.

My girls are 5 and I want them to have just as much fun with this as I did when I was a girl.

A friend of mine sent me the link to this site with lots of fun royal wedding ideas for kids. I adore these Princess Kate paper dolls with Disney princess outfits!

Do you have any royal wedding plans or are you thoroughly annoyed by all the hype?



my new crush

So what do you do when you're looking at real estate online
and you love, love, love the seller's furniture?
I think I could eat that couch up!
These rooms have 1963 written all over them...aren't they great?
Love this kitchen!


easter weekend

flowers at Pike Place Market, Seattle

How was your Easter weekend?
Ours was glorious!
The week leading up to Easter was a little crazy.
We were in California all week, flew home Friday night and then left early, early Saturday morning for a 5-hour drive over to Seattle for the weekend.

The weather was perfect on Saturday, about 70 degrees with sunny, clear skies.
We walked around Pike Place Market and enjoyed the Aquarium.
Downtown Seattle is by far one of my favorite places on the planet.

On Sunday morning, we drove out to Qwest Field, home of the Seattle Seahawks, for Mars Hill Church's Easter Celebration.
After driving around for an hour looking for parking and walking about 10 blocks in the rain with 4 children, we finally made our way into the stadium and found seats.
All of the parking woes, and the walking, and the rain were well worth it!
We snuggled up under our blankets--I'm so glad fleece blankets do well in the rain--and were blessed, blessed, blessed!
Pastor Mark preached a great message on who Jesus is.

This, I loved..."Jesus was not a good man...He is the God-Man. The Bible says there are none that do good."

There is nothing redeemable in man.
We all need Jesus.
It was all so, so good.

A quick Starbucks warm-up stop after the service.
Hot chocolate and lattes all around. :)

Then we headed up north to Arlington to visit our wonderful friends for Easter lunch.
They had Easter baskets and an egg hunt for our kids!

Hope your Easter was wonderful, too!


embroidery 101

Recently, I've been inspired to try embroidery,
thanks to a sweet friend and very creative
Farm Chicks vendor, Courtney.

She's always working on something cute--most likely trying to
stock up her booth for this year's Farm Chicks Show.

At Christa's baby shower, we asked the guests
to decorate onesies for Baby Ella.
I wasn't going to make one, but I couldn't resist all the adorable fabric.
It's like it was calling to me.

Now I think I might understand a crafter's obsession with cute fabric
and why one might justify collecting and possibly hoarding a large stash of quilting fabric.
I think I'm on the verge!

So here's my little creation for Baby Ella.
I'm so thankful that Courtney was there to help me get going.
It was frustrating at first, because I had to start over 3 times.
But now I can't wait to get started on another project!


baby ella

A few of my friends and I had the privilege of throwing a shower for one amazing friend, Christa, and her sweet little Ella Louise.
Simply put, Ella is a miracle. She was born with heart complications about 2 months before her due date and spent the first 70 days of her little life in the NICU.

And when I say privilege, I mean it with all of my heart.

I feel so honored to know Christa. Even praying for her sweet family during this time has felt like a privilege.

So many creative girls worked so hard to make everything beautiful!

I love all the sweet details that went into this special day.

beautiful artwork...

yummy food...

and little onesies to decorate.

We love you, Sweet Baby Ella!
We pray that God will continue to strengthen your little heart.
Our own hearts have been strengthened by knowing you
and by praying for you
and by seeing our amazing Creator
work a miracle in your little life.



life in these parts

photo courtesy of my purple girl

We love spring up here in the northwest! After our long, bleak winters, the sunshine feels so nice! My youngest daughter, lover of all things purple, noticed this crocus out in our front yard. I love each budding sign of spring around here!

"Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold...
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only for an hour."

from "Nothing Gold Can Stay"
--Robert Frost

That's what's going on outside...inside our home is just as sweet. I've really been enjoying my kids lately. Sometimes I forget that stopping everything to read a library book can reset the whole tone in our home. This past month I remembered. And what a difference it makes. The kids forget they're disgruntled or bored when we're lost in the pages of a good book. Puzzles and games have the same effect. It took me a few years of parenting to realize this. I think I'm so busy and have so much to do, but sometimes all they need from me is 5 minutes. Then I go back to making dinner and they run off to play and everything's good. Why do I think these interruptions will set me back 5 years? I think I read this in one of Sally Clarkson's books--my children are not interruptions in my day. They are my work (and I don't use the term "work" here as negative or burdensome). Maybe the laundry and the dishes are my interruptions. :)

Now that we're out of the baby stage and my oldest is 8, I often do a double take and think, how did we get here already? Where did the time go? Are they really all school-aged?

"...her early leaf's a flower; but only for an hour."

So, as I said earlier, I've really been enjoying my kids lately. They're growing, but I'm growing, too. I'm learning that good parenting is partly good perspective. It's difficult if you think it's difficult, delightful if you think it's delightful. I realize there's more to it than that. Trust me, I know. But I also feel the deep ache that tells me this season is short and I'd rather have more delightful moments than difficult ones. So we're going to read more books, play more games and do more puzzles. And if it ever warms up, we'll play outside and enjoy the springtime.

Oh, give us pleasure in the flowers today;
And give us not to think so far away
As the uncertain harvest; keep us here
All simply in the springing of the year."

"A Prayer in Spring"
--Robert Frost

Happy Spring, Everyone!