15 Months Old

So little Miss Avery just keeps growing, growing and growing some more.  Here we are at 15 months and so much has changed since she was just 12 months old...I can't believe it. The most exciting thing is her language.  The amount of words she says has just exploded this month and our once quiet house is now filled with babbles, giggles, and words like "No no", "Mommy", and "Help".  In most ways, this is good because I know exactly what she wants. But on the other side of the coin, when she doesn't want something, you will hear it...loud and clear. But I'm happy that she knows what she wants and she isn't afraid to say it.  Here she is for our 15 month photo shoot...skateboard style!

"Happy 15 months to me!"

This is the pink skateboard Brandon bought her for her birthday a few months back and usually they just go for "sitting rides" on it, but lately she's been getting more adventurous and wanting to stand on it. 

And do tricks on it too!

Careful you brave girl!
As you can tell, her hair continues to grow and curl up a bit on the ends and we've started to notice the cutest little dimple in the middle of her chin.  She's starting to look like a little girl...no longer like my little baby! Let's see how she's changed over the past few months...

Like how she started out holding the sign, and now I'm lucky if it's even in the shot? I have a feeling this is only going to get worse, but luckily it's easy to prop up and just "sit" will I snap away at our busy little, "anti-sign" girl.
Let's see what she's into this month...

1. Favorite food: Veggie Straws are still a clear favorite!

2. Favorite word: Names! She's really gotten into knowing every one's name, and giving them nicknames too. We'll be at dinner and she'll say, "Mommy (pointing at me), Daddy (pointing at Brandon), Avery (at herself), and then she'll proceed to name our dogs too. She especially loves to name her extended family members, like her Grandmas ("Nana") and Grandpas ("Papa") and her uncles and cousins...and characters on Sesame Street ("Abby!").  Other favorite words include: "Are you?" (when she's looking for something, like "Where are you?), "Done", "No ma", (no more), "Baby", "Snack", "Mix mix mix" (when I'm making a smoothie), "Moo moo" (smoothie), "Go dog, go" (for when playing catch with dogs), and her favorite, "Milk" for when she wants to nurse.  ( :

3. Favorite book: Funny Face by Anna Walker. This is one of our favorite books to read in the car and it has really helped teach Avery all about different emotions. Check out the many "faces" of Avery below...

"Angry face"

"Sad face" (Although you can't tell, she's saying "Wah wah"
and pretending to cry)

"Stop it with the faces for a second...is this my song? I better

"Happy face"
...scroll down later in the post to see her "Surprised face"!
4. Favorite activity: swimming/splashing in her little pool. Probably not the "greenest" pool around, but until toy stores start coming up with better green alternatives, this is what I'm sticking with. Avery sure approves! It's been perfect for those nights when we don't have time to go all the way to the pool, but still give Avery a chance to play in the thing she loves most...water! With the hot days we've been having here in the Midwest, this pool has really come in handy when she's begging us to go outside. Here she is splashing away and having a great time.
She loves to slam her hands down as hard as she can and then
inspect you afterwards to see if she's gotten you wet.

Climbing in and out of the pool is way more fun than just
sitting in it, right?

Another favorite: throwing the balls out of the pool and
off the porch.

One of the highlights from this past month was a short trip to Colorado. We drove there from where we live, here in Missouri, and stayed in with my cousin and her family while we were there. Even better, my parents tagged along and drove out there too...in separate cars. Though we didn't stay long, it was a fun chance for us to get away, catch up with some extended family, and soak up the Colorado mountain air (or smoke from the fires, which we happened to see while out there). 
Avery was excited for the road trip!

Packed and ready to go!

My parents, or "Papa and Nana"
as Avery calls them.

She did such a good job on the 11 hour drive. We made sure
to stop every two hours or so to give her a break and give
her a chance to run around. You can bet we kept the Veggie
Straws close by too.

Here we are stopping for lunch in Kansas...can you tell it was
hot there? Here's Avery's "Surprised face" like I mentioned above.

Making silly faces with Grandpa Frank.

Checking out the corn fields with Daddy.
After a long day of driving, we arrived at my cousin's house
near Fort Collins, Colorado. Here's the cool mountain view
from their backyard. I could get used to that!
Dinner time!
Every morning, my mom, Avery, and I went for a walk around
the trails near their neighborhood.

Just along for the ride.

"Flower anyone?"

While we were there, Avery and I spent
lots of time hanging out with family and
going shopping.

Brandon, on the other hand, did lots and lots of skateboarding.
The highlight of the trip: The Arvada Skate Park.
Not a bad view of the mountains either!
Avery joined him for a quick ride.

My two favorite skateboarders.

One our favorite things about the trip was all the time that
Avery got to spend with my parents, her grandparents.

We nicknamed them "Avery's Backseat Buddies"!

Aside from seeing the sights and shopping, Avery made
sure to squeeze in a little time to be silly!

Our trip crew. Thanks Lauren for letting us stay with you guys!
We can't wait to come out and visit again. (  :

Pinterest-craft of the Month: Anniversary Date Frame

In January, I decided that one of my New Year's Resolutions was going to be to create one Pinterest-craft each month. You know how you "pin" and "pin" and "pin" some more, but never actually get around to doing all those cool crafts? Okay maybe it's just me. But still, I was ready to stop pinning (for a moment)...and start doing. So here's this month's Pinterest-craft!

So even though last month was Brandon and I's five year wedding anniversary, I finally got around to doing this anniversary craft, which is part of a frame collage I'm working on in our bedroom. I'm really happy with how it turned out and how much money I was able to save by making it myself. 

Inspiration: I saw this frame on Pinterest and although I can be bought over at Etsy, it costs about $65 for the print and frame. But, I was feeling a little crafty so I thought, "I can make that!"


  • Photos of each number of your anniversary date
  • A wedding photo or just one of the two of you
  • A frame that hold an 11x14 picture (I found mine at Target for $17)
  • A photo editing software to create the print, I use Adobe Photoshop Elements 10
1. Take pictures of each number you need, property numbers
seem to work the best. Here's the all-elusive "07" I searched
and searched for. I actually found it on a walk one morning on
our trip to Colorado. Thank you to the person who's house number this
If you don't feel like taking your own pictures, here's a link to a cool, free Flickr site where you can download the numbers (and letters) you need.

2. Next import the pictures onto your
computer and edit them (I touched up
the seven a bit) and convert them to
black and white.
I like to use "PW Black & White" from The Pioneer Woman Photoshop Action Sets, which you can find here
3. Now you'll need to create the image to be printed.
 Here's some of the details of how I did it.
Using the information I found on the Etsy site for the "Anniversary Date Frame" that was my inspiration for this project...
  1. I created a "Blank File" that's 11 x 14 inches.
  2. I inserted a wedding photo of Brandon and I and sized it to be 4.75"x 6.5" (I wasn't planning for such random numbers, but this is what seemed to fit best in my mind, your frame may be completely different...and that's okay!)
  3. Next I inserted each of my anniversary numbers and sized them to be 4.1"x 2.75"
  4. Following this I inserted the "rectangle box/shape" and sized it to be 10.1"x 5.1"
  5. Last I added the text with our names. I used a font called, "From Where You Are" and the text size was 49.
  6. I then checked to make sure everything was evenly spaced and then I "flattened" my project so that it could be "Saved" as a JPEG. 
  7. Next I uploaded the JPEG to Mpix, and ordered an 11x14 print, cost $6.99. 
 Once my 11x14 print arrived, it was ready to be placed in the

Here's the final product: Our Anniversary
Date Frame.
I have several other frames that I'm still adding to this wall in our bedroom, I'll show you how it all ties together in next month's post.  So final cost for this project was about $24, a bit cheaper than $64 on Etsy. Now even though it was a bit more work (tracking down that darn "07") I'm happy I did it because now it has even more special memories. Have you ever made an anniversary date frame? They sure would make a great wedding gift or even for a baby to celebrate their birth date.

Last up, is my second New Year's Resolution, to go on at least one "date night" a month with Brandon. This one has been easy to cross off the list since I've been off school this summer, and my parents are more than happy to watch her when we need it. So this month we were able to go see The Dark Knight Rises and another time we went and enjoyed some yummy food. See if you can guess where we went?

My plate

Brandon's plate

Yep, Genghis Khan Mongolian Grill! Didn't we just go there last month? Well, yes. But I could go there every month! Look at those noodles, and veggies, and tofu...oh the tofu.

We also had dessert at a cool place here in Kansas City called, Mud Pie: Vegan Bakery & Coffeehouse.

Since all their food is vegan, I was curious if they had anything gluten-free, and they did not disappoint. I eyed some gluten-free cupcakes and without hesitation, ordered two: one chocolate and one vanilla. Look at these beauties:

Gluten-free, vegan cupcakes from Mud Pie.
Anyone else with restrictive diets get excited when you can eat stuff like this? I sure do. Maybe it's because it happens so rarely, or because it's just not that common to find, I don't know. Either way, I'm glad to have found Mud Pie! If you live in the Kansas City area, you should definitely give them a try!
The vanilla cupcake had a hint of coconut, while the chocolate
had a hint of cherry...I'm still dreaming of them both!  ( :
So that's what we've been up to this past month. Just crafting, cooking, traveling, and skateboarding! See you next month!
"Later dudes!"