Monday, September 15, 2014

What to do with our bathroom? (and giveaway winners)

How was your weekend? I hope less stressful than mine ;) and to keep my mind off of things I have been thinking about our bathroom that I shared with you guys last week. Remember when I shared our new shower head (click HERE if you missed it)?

I've been thinking about doing a gut job reno, I mean who wouldn't love to have a tiled walk-in shower. I'm not to fond of our standard builder's shower tub. Not too pretty at all.

But then on the other hand my tile that I chose 14 1/2 years ago isn't too bad, is it? And who knows if we'd ever move then doing a complete renovation of our tiny bathroom (and we have another identical one too) isn't really the most reasonable, is it?

Black, white, beige and white is still a nice combo when you mix in a little hint of color here and there. I'd wear it as clothing so that's always a good sign.

{image via Pinterest}

Here are some things I want possibly do for our bathroom but first I want to show you our beige checkerboard ceramic tiles just as a reminder:

So I was thinking to possibly have lots more black and white with the tiles and a floor to ceiling shower curtain.

{image via Pinterest}

Can't you just picture that with the beige and white checkerboard tiles?

 {image via homebunch}
{image via homebunch}

And then I'm also always intrigued by dark walls BUT I was told that the steam and moist air would cause streaks on the dark walls.

{image via Pinterest HERE and HERE}

Oh and I'm thinking about putting thick crown molding around ceiling and shower curtain like you can see on the left photo. I can so imagine the left photo with our tile. Not the perfect solution but it would look great and be budget friendly.

And one more thing and completely unrelated but Emily Henderson's kitchen (love her) just puts a smile on my face. It's so great and she has the same Delta kitchen faucet as me:

{image via Emily Henderson}

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Oh and by the way, here are the winners of the "Signature Style Giveaway":

Brooke Sirrine Waite (pillows) 
Michelle Ohara Levin (pillows) 
Miranda Mueller (Royal Design Studio) 
Dezi Allen (Stella and Dot bag) 
Kristen Gallagher (earrings)

Well and if you didn't win the Stella & Dot  'How Does She Do It' bag giveaway this time? No worries, now readers can still get a sweet 15% off your total order of $50 or more between now and November 15th. Just contact Jennifer Oxenford (Senior Independent Stylist, Stella & Dot at 267-496-9664 or to redeem this exclusive discount for Making Lemonade and Cuckoo4Design readers.

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If I find some time this fall, then I will tackle this little bathroom for sure. What do you think?



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Friday, September 12, 2014

Living Pretty With Your Pets: Nalle's House

It's time for my favorite Friday post. I know there is a smaller group of my readers who truly enjoys these Friday posts and I do too.
Today we have Anu from Nalle's House and I truly mean it when I say that she inspires me with everything she does. She has a truly unique style and she sticks to it. There aren't many blogs like hers out there. And I truly love everything she does. It is different, stylish and so unique. If you've ever taken a peek at my DIY Pinterest board then you see that it is filled with her projects. I just love them and her amazing photographs.

Hi everyone!  I'm Anu and I blog over at Nalle's House.  Julia's pet series is so fun and I am honoured to be here today.  Julia is the kindest and sweetest person you'll meet over the internets!

Today it's my turn to talk a little about my fur-baby, Nalle, an eight year-old golden retriever.  He also happens to be my blog's namesake!  Nalle means "teddy bear" in Finnish.  Our little family is first generation Finnish-Canadian and even Nalle's doggie dad was imported from Finland so he's half-Finnish as well!  He was also named after my dad's beloved, childhood dog, Nalle-The First, who was a German Sheppard mix.  My dad always had the best stories about his Nalle.  So the name was a double win in that it had a great meaning and sentiment for our family.  

Nalle was the runt of the litter and he literally chose us when we went for our first visit to the breeder.  He was the tiny puppy that was left behind by the rest of his siblings, but when it came time to visit with us he made sure to let his siblings know that we were his with his little bark.   Nalle is our family's second fur baby.  We had a rescue cat first and he was Nalle's best friend.  They had the best wrestling matches and all of us were so sad one day when he disappeared from our country property.  To this day even after a 40 km move to the city I still stop and check every black and grey tabby cat I cross paths with to make sure it's not our lost family member.  

The best characteristic of Nalle is that he is the most friendly and social dog.  He thinks any passerby will instantly love him and give him all the attention in the world.  He's even mastered a submissive trick that he uses with dog owners/walkers.  Nalle will submit, laying flat down on the ground in front of the other dog (even the ones that are a tenth his size), and then commando crawl over to the owner to get some human attention.  The other dog is usually happy to feel dominant and rarely notices that Nalle has gotten over to their owner for some belly rubs.  Most can't resist his puppy-like face and often think he's a much younger dog.  

Nalle can also be quite stubborn.  If you take him on a walk he'll let you know where he wants you to go.  He'll put on the brakes if you turn toward home too soon.

A couple of Nalle's favourite hobbies have been given very technical terms:
1)  Mad-Doggin':  Nalle loves to spread his wings.  If you let him off the leash he will instantly burst into a wild run consistent of swooping circles and figure eights.  His tongue is usually hanging out the side of his mouth and he really does look a little "mad".
2)  Checking Pee-mail:  Nalle must keep in touch with his other furry friends.  He is excellent at checking for any messages at every post and fire hydrant. :)  

A question we often get is about how Nalle is with the kids.  He's both really great with them, but also indifferent to them.  He let's them do whatever they want to him and is super gentle with them.  However, he rarely plays with them.  I think a lot of this is due to the fact that he was a little older when the kids came and maybe he still misses his cat brother.  Nalle does get his own one-on-one time with Mummu and Pappa (grandma and grandpa) which he really enjoys.  

Even though he acts indifferent to his brothers, I think he really does like them more than he lets on.  Just look at his expression below.  He's loving that kiss from baby brother!  

I also try to make sure the boys know how important Nalle is to our family.  Nalle's birthday is a pretty big deal and we have a tradition of getting him an ice cream cake.  Ice cream is Nalle's favorite!  

I posted the photo below on Instagram this summer and someone commented that it will likely become one of my most favourite photos of the boys and I think she is right!  I thought to myself that it would be great to recreate a similar shot each year, but that reminded me that our time with Nalle is so short.  I'm not sure how many summers we still have with this buddy and his unconditional love.  I think that God gave us these devoted creatures that we may have a glimpse of His love.  

I hope you enjoyed getting to know our "teddy bear", Nalle.  Thanks so much Julia for having me here!

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To read more animal posts you can click HERE.

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I love how Anu put it about an animal's unconditional love and I wish more people would realize that. Nalle's face is so sweet and gentle and I feel bad that he misses his cat brother. I totally know they are capable of grief just the way we are. Don't you love the birthday tradition?

Pay Nalle, Anu and the rest of the adorable family a visit. I know you won't regret it by clicking HERE. I love the recent artwork she did which you can see on the one photo above where Nalle is lying on the deck (click HERE to see it).

Tschüß and have a great weekend.


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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

An update on our daughter

I have thought long and hard about writing another post about our daughter. I have mixed feelings because I don't want this to haunt her in any way later in life. Mean girls at school or college perhaps?!? You just never know.

But my last post about our daughter (click HERE) has helped me in a big way because the response of all you friends who never really comment but wrote me emails and poured out your hearts about similar struggles made me feel like I really wasn't alone. There are other parents like me out there who struggle daily and are looking for answers. This is what made up my mind and I thought it could possibly help someone else out there. I really don't want this to turn into a parenting blog by any means and I hope that all of you who have been following this crazy cat lady because of my projects will stick with me until I somewhat gain control of our lives again. I miss my creative outlet and projects but right now I have to focus on getting her to function better again and get healthy. I do work on little things on the side in the house but not with the speed and enthusiasm as before because I just don't have the time. If I haven't been around your blog for a while to comment, this is the reason.

Since my last post we returned home, started school, visited the pediatrician, had an incredibly sweet Occupational Therapist come to our house and found out some news. 
Let me explain: Getting her ready for school is a huge struggle and stressful for everyone involved. She doesn't want to wear anything, flies into fits of rage over it and acts like a complete lunatic. My neighbors are witnesses to it, she even took out a chunk of skin on my arm while trying to get her out of the house which made me burst into tears in front of all the other parents. I have cried a lot in the past couple of weeks. 
It gets questioned nonstop if she really does have sensory issues or if this could possibly be mental health issues? The pediatrician questions it too.
She can't get dressed for soccer or horseback riding which she loves so much. She drives us all insane. Especially our son's patience is wearing thin. It's tough on him too and he is a very understanding and loving older brother, always has been. 

I've heard several suggestions of trying medication to help her act normal. But I want to find out why she worsened so quickly over the summer. 

Well, my old high school classmate from Germany who is a holistic practitioner now (I know for some there might be a red flag flying with that word) had suggested in Germany that we should send a stool sample to a lab since she has always had horrible constipation. Nobody had ever suggested this before which already appears strange when someone has problems in that area. On Friday she emailed me the results and to our surprise she has a severe yeast overgrowth in her intestines. The name "Candida Albicans" was completely new to me but if your child has autism or ADHD then you might have heard of it before. This yeast is commonly responsible for thrush and leaky gut
It feeds on yeast and sugar... lightbulb moment for us!!!! She has such a big sweet tooth. Her favorite places to eat are German bakeries!!! 
Does she show the standard symptoms that pediatricians look for? Nope, but a test result doesn't lie. 

Some not so visible signs are: anger issues, mood swings, depression, constipation, skin problems... and several more.

We have researched so much over the past couple of days (for example HERE and HERE) and my husband and I agree that it makes sense to us. And we have to try to battle this before trying any heavy meds that other doctors suggest. 

She will get Nystatin (prescribed by her pediatrician) and a strict diet for now where she isn't allowed to eat any sugar or yeast which is so hard for a little girl that has a birthday coming up and Halloween on the horizon. She hasn't been taking it well. The depressing things that come out of her mouth have crushed me and brought me to tears again and again. Last weekend she wanted to stay at home in her nightgown and cry. That's not how a little girl should spend her free time. But getting dressed to go somewhere stresses her out even more. Home is her safe place where she can act and look the way she feels comfortable right now.
After that she will still need a strict diet and the right probiotics. 

Our days consist of researching recipes and foods that she can eat. And then of course having to cook those meals only to have her break down in a fit over how she hates it.

But we are certainly hoping that this will help her heal her body and get her on the right path to being a happy carefree little girl again. 

This possibly means that I will post more sporadic and I hope you understand. I'm trying to go day by day right now.

Wish us luck.



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Monday, September 8, 2014

Our new awesome shower head

(This is not a sponsored post but I did received this product from Delta® faucet company. All opinions are 100% my own!)

Alrighty, today I'm letting you peak into our bathroom. I've never shared it on my blog since I'm over my beige phase. It's not a terrible place and it's for sure better now with our new faucet. I kind of feel fancy now I might have to add. And the kids are thrilled too. They even had to show their neighborhood friends our new addition and it's the first time that a neighborhood kiddo asked me if he could shower at our house, ha!

When we returned from our trip, I was thrilled to see this little package with my mail:

And it was such a breeze to install. I didn't even need any tools, the tools were only necessary to remove our old filter shower head.

It as simple as just screwing all the parts into place:

And voila, a new sparkly, fancy and smart shower head. 

During my fancy trip (HERE) to Delta® faucet company, I learned all about the awesome Temp2O™ faucet. For example that the color indicators signal different temperature: blue represents below 80 degrees, magenta is between 80 and 110, red is greater than 110 degrees but you can also read the degrees on the display.

Pretty cool, am I right?

Here are also little glimpses at the rest of our bathroom. 14 years ago I picked beige and white checkerboard ceramic tiles.

And an entire wall of birds and branches decals:

I probably should have shared this bath before, now that I think about it ;)

I'm so so happy with the new shower head and I wouldn't share it on my blog for sure if I wasn't. The removable feature also makes it so much easier to clean the tup and my kiddos. It's a 100% improvement to what we had before. And I'm very grateful to Delta® faucet for providing me with such a great addition to our modest little bathroom.

Oh and did you see our new gold Delta® faucet TRINSIC Touch2O® kitchen faucet (click HERE)?

That's it for today.



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