I kept promising Colt that we would soon have a lemonade stand. But then, like a lot of parents, I got super busy and kept saying, "dont worry buddy, we will do it!". I felt bad for putting it off most of the summer but I finally found the perfect day to do it-- on a saturday when there was a tennis invitational across the street.
Of course, since this is obviously how I do things, I waited till the day before to start thinking about how I was going to do it. I wanted to just go buy some cute little curbside stand and decorate it and write "lemonade" on it. I've seen them in my neighborhood, they're adorable. Well, it turns out those are only available online. Ugh.
Well, a card table and a vinyl table cloth would have to suffice. I went to my favorite place to print things, FedEx Kinko's, and printed out all kinds of cute lemonade stand prints. I figured I'd go with colors yellow and green (but I ended up having a lot of red because thats the only decent looking table cloth I could find at Walmart. Procrastination, it will get you every time). I even cheated and bought the lemonade-- I know, lame. BUT, I did cut up a bunch of lemons and throw them in there, that counts for something, right?!
Colton was so excited. We went out to set everything up around noon and he could hardly stand it. One guy walked over before we were set up and Colton started jumping up and down yelling "my first customer! my first customer!" and then another guy came, and he shouted "my first customer, again!" So basically every person was his first customer- again.
Take a look at the photos:
Did you have a lemonade stand this summer?! You probably actually made the lemonade.
Either way, Cheers!
I tend to like traditions. There is just something about the old fashioned customs that I enjoy. I decided to look up the anniversary gifts by year, and I lucked out because the 5 year anniversary gift was wood. Phew, that was an easy one.
I decided to make something for Jeff and I to use in our house that also commemorated our 5 years together.
Here is what I did:
1. Pallet World. I swung by on Monday and asked for 6 peices of wood between 2 and 3 feet long. $7 later, I was out of there with some great wood slats in the length I needed.
2. Sand and stain. I went to home depot and bought MinWax Wood Finish in Dark Walnut and Red Mahogany. The boards I got were pretty close to perfect looking and I needed to rough them up a little, you know, make them look older. So I bought two different colors of stain and decided to do a few of the boards in each color and then mix the stains on some others so that they all appeared a little different. I used some sand paper to help with the appearance as well.
3. Stencils. I wasn't exactly sure how to do this, so I just went for it. I wanted it to look as handwritten as possible so I found a font that was very similar to my own handwriting. I used font "Lucida Handwriting" and printed it off in sizes between 175- 300 (I used a few different sizes depending on the word). From there, I cut it out, placed it where I wanted on the board and used a white permanent chalk marker to trace around it. It actually worked extremely well!
4. Add the date. For the dates I did the very same thing as above except I used font "Niagra Solid" and I think the size was 300. You can vary the size depending on the size of your wood slats. The dates came out pretty perfectly.
5. Paint. I wasn't sure the best way to do this either, so I thought I would try using acrylic paint markers to keep my lines clean. I went to Michael's and bought 3 different tip widths to see what worked best. I ended up using the white acrylic paint pen, tip size "fine" for everything. There were only 3 sizes available and "fine" was the middle choice. It worked great. It may appear to have brush strokes because it's soaking into the wood, but once everything dries, it blends in. I went over a few of the words twice on the darker stained wood to make sure it showed up. (Below is one coat, still wet.)
7. Done! Flip it over, and you're done! I'm going to put this in my living room and I can always add more wood to the bottom for big milestones still to come. It makes a great decoration and a good conversational piece.
For the last several years we have had an old koi pond sitting in our backyard. We could never really decided what to do with it. Obviously, we thought about putting Koi fish back in it... but then Colton fell into it, so we decided we should think up something else. My little yorkie-poo, Mia, also fell into it on a separate occassion. This was becoming a nightmare. It was left by the old home owners and full of smelly, greenish-looking murky water. I'm pretty sure it was growing it's own weeds and everything. Needless to say, it was pretty gross. Fast forward to this summer and it's still sitting there in all it's nastiness and we still had not decided what to do about it. Then Braxton fell in. That was enough, we were filling that thing in. I decided that if we wanted a little fish pond down the road, we can have it redone, but for now- it was going to have to be something else.
I also had an abundance of little flowers and plants that Colton had planted at preschool that he was so proud of (one was literally a pot of grass... he loves that grass!). He always says "a little rain and some sun really does work!".
I decided to make the "pond" into his own personal garden. He gets to pick the flowers, he gets to help plant them and he has to water and take care of them! He was ecstatic.
My mom offered to come over and fill in the pond with dirt and help Colt plant. Check out this adorableness: