Christmas 2016

Not gonna lie…Christmas is exhausting.  It’s like a giant shit show of presents, sugar, whining, giant toys, food, and no sleep. On Christmas Eve Eve I’m all ‘YAY CHRISTMAS SO FUN!’ …then by mid-afternoon of Christmas Day I’m done. Just tired of  parenting and being off schedule and sleeping in the same room as my kids.

Nevertheless we are fortunate to finally live within driving distance of my family and for that I am grateful.  Being with family over the Holidays is usually worth the exhaustion in the end. For all the hard and frustrating times we have while traveling with the kids, the fun moments tend to make it worth it.

We had “Santa” come on Wednesday night since we planned to leave Friday and didn’t want to drag all the crap up to Nebraska. Plus this gave the kids a full day to play with their new fun stuff while they were home on Thursday (aka made my day easier).

Then on Friday morning we opened the rest of our family gifts before hitting the road. Lance got Jack this giant Thomas track jump thing (without telling me) and it currently takes up half the basement…so that’s fun. I have strong feelings about toys that can not be easily stored away. Probably why Lance “forgot” to mention it. 

The trip up to Fremont was pretty uneventful (minus the dude with a gun on I29 causing it to shut down for a while delaying our leave time a bit) but confirmed the need for a van.  I can’t stand having to constantly turn around and pick up crap, give Allison her paci, get food for Jack, etc…drives me bonkers!!  I need SPACE!  and sliding doors!  and cup holders!

We went to my Dad’s house for lunch on Christmas Eve, and then spent the rest of the time at my Mom’s house with her 20 trees. Christmas decorations have never been lacking in her house.

The kids were overtired crank-fests by 5pm so we skipped church and Christmas light viewing and let them open gifts before the adults (we do Christmas Eve gift opening) so we could get them to bed before the meltdowns began.

Then we opened our gifts, drank wine, and played a million rounds of Catch Phrase.

We had a delicious dinner at my Aunt and Uncles house in Omaha on Christmas Day and played the game of logos…or something…I don’t know I spent most of the game time trying to get Allison to nap. The few minutes I played I was terrible…brands are apparently not my thing.

At least Allison rocked her buffalo check headband from the Splendid Bow Shop!

We had planned to stay one final night at my Mom’s before heading back, but after spending two hours trying to get the kids to sleep we surrendered and threw them and all the crap in the Rav and headed back to KC. They slept the entire way (thank god) and we got to listen to the Chiefs win…so not a total waste!

All in all it was a great Christmas. Holidays with kids are fun but also a ton of work…you don’t get to relax really…it’s nonstop parenting.  The holiday hangover hasn’t been too bad now that we are back to work/daycare and on schedule.  Of course we have a 4-day weekend coming up for New Years so wish me luck!

Or send wine.


Allison’s Nursery


*photo by Allison Corrin Photography

Allison recently turned 6 months old (what?!) and so I figured it was about time I took some pics of her nursery.  Unlike with Jack, we knew what we were having this time around…and I will admit I loved going with more feminine touches after doing the neutral thing for Jack’s room.  I was really drawn to the light and airy blush/cream/mint/gold nurseries on pinterest and the arrow/tribal trend so that is what I went for.  I purchased this fabric from Spoonflower to make the changing pad cover and just went from there.


*view from the door coming into the room


If you have been following for awhile than you know I have a deep love for the color gray and painted almost all the walls in our first home some shade of gray.  So shocker…I went with gray walls here as well.  The only difference is I went with a much warmer gray color as opposed to the cooler grays from our last home.  The trim unfortunately has all been painted a cream color…ugh…if only there was an “undo” button for that.  So I felt the warmer color was needed to offset the cream trim and brown carpet.


*Allison approves of the brown carpet…mom not so much.




All of the furniture is just recycled from Jack’s nursery.  We bought Jack a twin size “big boy bed” and matching dresser so we could keep all the white stuff for the nursery.  I wanted to do the embroidery hoops above the crib again but instead of using fabric as I did for Jack’s room, I wrapped yarn around the inner loop to give it a more “tribal” feel.  I struggled to find the perfect mint color yarn at the time….still hoping to switch it out if I ever come across some.  IMG_9466 (3)

After seeing several pics of the Hemnes dresser with gold knobs I knew I had to do the same and just spray painted over the original knobs.  I also went with a gallery wall above the dresser again and  I LOVE how it turned out.  I started with the coral Kansas state print and then just picked things up here and there as I came across them.  I also did the hospital pic with id band just like I made for Jack in the ikea box frame.  I spray painted Allison’s frame gold to tie in with the other gold accents throughout her room.  I found this little arrow at a local craft event and spray painted it gold and threw on some gold hooks and voila…a little headband holder!



It felt a little funny buying all these “kansas” things for her room after just moving here but since it would be her birthplace I really wanted to encompass that.  I hope these prints remain a part of her room as she grows and gets to know this city as her home.


I picked up this cute basic white shelf at Ikea and obviously the brackets needed to be gold…I got a little spray paint happy.  The nail thread arrow is by a local artist and goes with the various other arrows throughout the room.




I found the glass jar at Ikea and decided it was the perfect spot to keep her knot headbands since they are a little too large for the arrow headband holder above her dresser.  The frame and little wood print were Hobby Lobby finds (the same day I went into labor) and her little baby book is via Lucy Darling Shop.


*photo by Allison Corrin photography


IMG_9282*Allison says “Get Outta here” in her best Cribs voice. 


Paint Color: Sherwin Williams ‘Anew Gray’

Paint via Lowes:  HGTV Sherwin Williams (I was super impressed with this paint!  Like I almost always have to do a second coat or fill in patches but nope…the coverage was outstanding.  I used the Ovation line for this project and it was just as good as the Showcase version which I used in Jack’s room)

Dresser, Side Table: Both are Ikea Hemnes

Crib:  Target, Graco Lauren

Rocker:  Buy Buy Baby (forget the brand…sorry!)

Poof:  Land of Nod in Mint

Crib Sheet:  Target

Curtain:  Target

Clock: found at local Kirklands

Kansas state print: Armada Supply Co on Etsy

Kansas City print: by Tammy Smith found locally

Circle Mirrors and various frames found at local Home Goods

Large wall arrow with hooks:  Target




A few weekends ago Lance and I took advantage of my Mom being in town and went on a little day date to explore some local breweries.   When talking with the various brewtenders and some other patrons we always started off with the “we recently moved here!” bit.  We felt like tourists on vacation.  A little escape from the burbs to the city…the city we don’t know and doesn’t yet feel like home.



As we closely followed the route on the map neither of us had a clue what streets went where or nifty shortcuts to avoid traffic.  Put me in downtown Salt Lake and I’ll get you anywhere in the valley!  But here…nope not a clue.  I35 terrifies me.  Sure I’ve got our little suburb down and the major areas figured out…I can get you to the nearest Target and liquor store after all!  But I can’t help but wonder when it will feel like HOME.  When backroads will become my daily route and local beer won’t seem so “cool” and new.  When the “newness” will wear off and the comforting feel of an old worn in tee will take over.



I find myself missing Salt Lake from time to time.  The familiarity of it.  We had our “go to” date spots and knew whether certain restaurants were kid friendly and what Jack may or may not eat there.  We had our favorite Target cashiers and the Sunday morning Starbucks barista who knew Jack’s order (chocolate milk and pumpkin bread!) every week. I knew exactly how far and which streets to take in our neighborhood to get whatever milage I was after for every run.  When family and friends visited we knew where to take them for the best chicken noodle soup (Porcupine) and ice cream (Farrs).


The unique thing about being a Utah transplant is that you instantly bond with other transplants…who moved there for work or just simply because they love the mountains.  For that reason the majority of our friends there were not locals either and eventually planned to move back closer to family.  Some of our dearest had already left by the time we packed up our boxes and said goodbye.  But some still remain…and I miss them.  I miss our zoo dates, bookclub meetings, and monthly bunco nights which always turned into a laugh fest.


I know these things take time…change is always hard and moving is never easy.  Now that the dust has settled (literally…like I should probably dust one day here soon) I’m eager to fall in love with this city.  I want to feel like a local and not an outsider.  I want to be able to point out the best local BBQ joint and have a spot in the garage dedicated to our Royals tailgating gear.  I want to wear my Charlie Hustle shirt and not feel like a poser.


Spring is the season of “new beginnings” and it’s starting to feel that way around here.  Coming out of the newborn/baby phase Allison is changing daily it seems and we’re all getting more comfortable with our new way of life as a family of 4.  The sun is shining through the windows a little later each night and the promise of warmer days is upon us.  As we move past the “just moved” phase into the “KC newbie” phase I know things will start to feel more like Home.  Roots will dig in as we make memories here.  The difference about this move vs ones in the past is that this one is likely for the long haul…where our kids will grow up and come back to to call their Home.

Let’s just get on with it already.


  1. Our Utah house the day we moved…it wasn’t the prettiest from the outside but we sure put a lot of love and life into the inside.  It will always hold a special place in our heart as our first home.
  2. Jack running through the field of a nearby park…our go-to place to burn that toddler energy.  The pretty mountains were a constant backdrop to our daily adventures.
  3. My sister “Titanic-ing” over the Valley.
  4. Teaching Jack to “cheers” at our favorite local brewpub Red Rock…our go-to date night spot and where we went to celebrate Lance landing his job that brought us to Kansas.
  5. One final zoo date with Leslie and Pipes before we both said goodbye to Utah.  Now if only they had moved to Kansas too 😉
  6. Mini sleeping in her favorite spot in our Utah backyard…under our Love Tree which we had to leave behind 😦