Buntings, Adoption & Skinny Trees

This weekend I made up some fun mini Christmas buntings.  Each strand is over 8ft long and includes 50 flags.  They are $25 flat.  Shoot me an email (pitterpatterart at gmail dot com) or send me a message HERE if you are interested.  I have 5 available.

I’m also working on getting some key fob sets made up, but also working on orders as they come in, so if you know you would like a set, send me a message and I can make sure I get them made up for you.  More name pillows, key fobs and a 4×12 canvas headed to their new owners.  Can’t say enough how appreciative I am for your business.


I also still have some canvases available for purchase HERE or click on the Currently Available button at the top.  These are ready to ship.

In other news…2 things:

1.)  The kids school had their Trojan Trot to help raise money for school equipment.  I seriously could not love this school more.  It was super fun getting to walk for an hour with both the kindergarten and second grade classes…my kiddos and all their friends who they spend so much time with 5 days a week.  Amon rocked his stroller after his legs were toast.  Toddler stamina is pretty low 🙂

 While walking with Harper’s class Amon drew quite a crowd and of course brought up lots of kid questions about why are family looks a little different.  I don’t mind these questions at all.  I like that kids want to know and I like to help and assist with answers and the processing of them.  I also feel like our kids are pretty equipped to answer these questions on their own as well.  “So you wanted another kid and he needed a family and God put you together…”  Another friend chimed in, “I’m adopted too.”  I said, “And what a blessing you are to your mom and dad.”  And then I really started crying like a big lady baby.  They all giggled at me and one little girl even said, “Oh I didn’t mean to make you cry.”  I told them all sometimes I just cry happy tears.

Adoption is hard and laced with all kinds of loss and brokeness for the birth family and the child, but God is sovereign and mighty and only He can bring restoration.  I have all kinds of complicated feelings about it.  I hate that I will never fully understand how Solomon and Amon feel as they grow and process their stories.  I’ll never be able to fully grasp the loss they grieve because I haven’t experienced it…so sometimes all I can do is beg God to be all their answers and all their heart needs and in the same breath praise His name and shout prayers of gratefulness that I get to be their Mom.  What a privilege and honor.  I walked away that day beaming with gratefulness that 4 crazy good kids call me Mom and for the opportunities we are given to be apart of this community.

2.)  On a less emotional note…we got our Christmas on this weekend.  Josh Kelley could wait no longer.  Our past, much fuller, but much older Christmas tree finally bit the dust last year, so this year we pulled out this skinny guy and you know what, I love it.  Harper was super skeptical at first.  Especially when it was just like a stick…no limbs spread out yet, but then it came alive and we’re all digging the skinny tree this year.  And honestly it works great for our small space.

Doesn’t everyone wear toboggans and gloves while placing ornaments on their Christmas tree?!?!?!?

And Full Count’s Christmas tree lot is opened early.  So you can go ahead  and get your live tree now.  They’re located at Foxx Pools in Hendersonville…780 W Main St.  All money raised goes towards sending kids on mission.  An easy win/win.  We would totally get one, but alas my allergy kid would probably die.  Ha.  No dying on Christmas.  Go check them out and let your Christmas tree purchase mean something extra this year.

That’s all I’ve got.  A random smorgasbord as always.  Thanks for stopping by and hope your week is off to a grand start.

Happy Monday.

Christmas ShakeDown

Christmas made me semi MIA.  If you follow me on Instagram you know what we’ve kind of been up to.  I’m pitterpatterart if you want to follow along.  It’s kind of sad how few pictures I took with my real camera.  It was a wild and crazy Christmas Eve and Day.

Festive running shoes…yes, please.

For our Christmas Even kindness advent we took in our neighbor’s trash can.  It was freezing, but we rocked it in just our jams.

Yesterday we were going to gift a store worker with a gift card and I totally forgot.  So the gift card is still in my purse and hopefully we’ll surprise someone today instead.  And that will end our kindness advent which was leading us up to Christmas.  So until next year.  Kind of excited to think through all the possibilities for next year.

So how was your Christmas?  Do anything exciting…get any crazy thoughtful gifts?  This is the best picture I got of the kids. Can you imagine what the other ones look like if this is the best?!?!  Yeah, they’re amazing.

We typically try and make cookies for Santa, but this year we opted out.  The amount of germs and finger licking that goes into kid made cookies was too much for this year.  We opted for just slicing off a piece of cake for good ole’ Saint Nick instead.  Harper deliberated between Bunny’s Cake and Chocolate Bavarian Torte.  She went with Bunny’s Cake in the end and Josh was very pleased.

Christmas Eve ended up being a super weird night because Josh and I were actually in bed by like 9:30 #neverhappens But the weird part came at 11pm.  The kids had gone to sleep around 7 and Huddy awoke at 11pm, came down stairs, saw that Santa had come and just assumed it was Christmas morning.  Never mind it was still dark.  He then went upstairs and woke Sol and Harper up and told them all about Santa’s arrival.  Next thing we know, they are all down stairs beside our bed declaring it’s Christmas morning.  We were so confused.  I then had to explain it was still Christmas Eve and they still had a good 7-8 hours of sleep left.  2 hours later and three more occasions of excited Kelley children showing up beside our bed and I was wishing Santa brought a time telling book and clocks for each child.

Opening presents at our house was super fun this year.  Everyone was really excited.  Each kiddo received three gifts.  I later asked what their favorite was.

Harper:  Our Generation Willow Doll

Hudson: Navy Seals MP5 submachine gun (he wasn’t specific at all…ha)

Solomon:  Crossbow

Amon had kind of domesticated Christmas and loved it.  He can vacuum, dust bust, sweep and push a baby with the best of them.

Speaking of Amon, as I fixed what I have deemed his “holiday hair” I decided Josh was right and a haircut is in his near future.  I mean, really, nothing says Happy Birthday baby Jesus more than a toddler with a mullet.

And the rest of our Christmas was full of more presents…giving & receiving…and yummy food and family and amazing friends and the constant reminder of God’s goodness and mercy.

I was very well aware it was coming and yet I’m surprised it’s already gone.  It was kind of weird this year for me and it all took me by surprise really.  I kind of thought last year would have been the hardest year, but as Courtney and I talked about on Christmas Eve, this Christmas was definitely the hardest and it really caught me off guard.  Like who goes into a full on 30 minute weep session after watching Jim Carrey’s version of the Grinch?!?!  I was a tad disappointed in myself.  I feel like I should have saved the weeping for the reading of the Christmas story from Luke or that Amon is celebrating another Christmas with us or maybe for our kids sweet faces on Christmas morning, but no, I just want to save my good tears for Jim.  But it was a place where joy and sadness coexisted.  Where people rallied around hearts and ate delicious chili together.  Who knew right?!?!  It was a very different and strange and hard and joyous Christmas.  Nothing like I expected, but as always His love and grace and mercy showed up to saturate our lives in the best way.  And in a way no one really expected…a baby.

Hope you all had a Merry Christmas.

Happy Thursday!

December 21, 22 & 23

Seriously, Christmas is Wednesday.  I can’t believe it’s about to be here, over and done.  Craziness.

For Saturday’s kindness advent we babysat.  And it just so happened it worked out just right for us to babysit sweet Delaney and for her momma and daddy to enjoy a little dinner and shopping.  This was kind of one of those advents that is completely awesome in the fact that Delaney is seriously like the easiest baby ever, Courtney bought us pizza and we got to watch lots of Christmas shows on their cable.  What, what!  I sent several texts telling them to take their time coming home because Harper and I were enjoying our girl time and their cable tv.  Kindness is so hard sometimes.

Yesterday’s was pretty simple.  Small Kroger gift cards + empty Kroger shopping carts = hopefully surprised Kroger shoppers. The end.

For today’s advent we are taking some friends a recipe for dinner and all the ingredients.  And it’s a really simple recipe too.  The simpler, the better…in my opinion.

Tomorrow we will be taking in our neighbors trash cans.

In other Christmasy news…we started off our first day of Christmas break with donuts.  So delightfully yummy and sprinkled to perfection.  God bless Krispy Kreme for being open on Mondays when our Shipley’s is closed.

We had our first little Christmas family fun yesterday with my brother Chris’ family.  Each kiddo got one present.  They took turns opening and the current opener got to sit on the couch while everyone watched.  It was really cute.  It’s hard to express the deep sadness that goes along with watching these kids and knowing how much Mom would have just loved this year.  How crappy it is that she never met Amon.  Makes me weepy.  Holidays are kind of like that now…joy and sadness mixed together.

Tomorrow the festivities continue.  And we press right on into Christmas day.  I’m doing a little last minute crafting and grocery shopping today.  Makes me a bit giddy.  Hope you enjoy your eve before Christmas eve.

Happy Monday.

December 20

Today for our kindness advent we took cookies and treats to our pediatrician’s office.  Here’s the deal people…our pediatrician is the bomb dignity.  I remember when I first found out I was pregnant with Harper one of the first things my mom told me was she had the perfect pediatrician as a client of hers.  She told me I HAD to use him…she was pretty much putting her “mom” foot down.  I’ve always been a little stubborn and told her I’d think about it.  The more I read and heard from others about Dr. Eidson, I quickly realized Mom was right.  And I have since been just thrilled to have him care for all our kiddos.  His entire office is crazy awesome.  They are kind and loving and caring.  They totally deserve cookies.

All the kids started out helping with the baking, but then there was some fighting and tears and gnashing of teeth and yeah, then some kids were sent to bed.  It started off all magical and sweet and ended with me wanting to curse.  It’s not really Christmas until there’s crying and cursing right?!?!?!

Amon still completely loves the kitchen aid mixer which is easily my favorite baking utensil along with my cookie scoop.

For tomorrow’s kindness we are babysitting.  Yeah, Harper and I are pretty pumped about having a baby girl in our care for a bit.

So I’m pretty excited about the weekend.  I have dinner planned with some sweet friends tonight.  And Harper’s last day of school was today.  I just sat in Susan’s classroom thinking how light I felt.  I have almost all my shopping done and not one thing on my to-do list.  I have a few projects in mind and all of Harper’s end of school stuff is finished with.  It just feels good.  Light.  I like it.  Huddy, Sol and I are currently laying on the couch watching Monster University.  I like today a lot.  Here’s to a fantastic weekend.  Hope everyone enjoys it.

Happy Friday.

December 19

Today for our kindness advent we asked Ms. Flowers about some supplies she needed for her class, went shopping and then delivered them this morning…bright and early…and in PJs.  We completely adore our teachers and want to make sure they know how much we appreciate all they do.  I think this advent will forever remain on the list.

Tomorrow we are delivering cookies and goodies to our pediatricians office.  They take really good care of our kiddos and that totally deserves a cookie.

In other random news…Amon is still randomly falling asleep.  I made Josh watch some fainting goat videos on youtube the other night and we just laughed and laughed.  It’s so Amon.  He loves to lay on our floor vents when the heat comes on and the other day he just fell right asleep.  I love him.

We couldn’t remember what our elf’s name was from last year, so we just re-named him.  Meet Frody.  Huddy came up with it and Harper said she preferred Brody, but we just rolled with it.  He forgets to move…like a lot.  I’m always like, “He must just be tired.”  AKA Josh and I are tired…and forgot.

Christmas lights and letting our kids hang out our van windows like yahoos?  Yes, please.  Before I get emails, these were lights in a little camp ground…not out on a road.  #safetyfirst

I’m still running.  I haven’t been posting about it because I just never remember.  Lately we’ve been braving some cold weather, but cold running is always best with friends.

Susan may win the award for the gift our boys absolutely flip out over this year.  She found army coveralls in their size at a local army surplus store and then went through all their old military patches.  She even found a “Hudson” and a “Kelley”…no Solomon, but he won’t care…he gets his last name…even spelled correctly.  While sewing on the patches I got just down right excited.  They are going to absolutely love these.  I’m thankful for creative, fun friends who love my kids like they are her own.

Speaking of crazy boys…these two have been cracking me up lately.  I took this picture in a store the other day and right after they had an intense conversation about playing weenie ninjas when they got home.  I have no words…and no clue.

And I saves the best for last.  My cousin Rebecca sent me a text yesterday that included this picture and it said, “I asked Grant to write down his iPod password.”  Grant is the sweetest kid and a huge baseball fan and loves Jesus.  I laughed out loud…and continued to laugh every time I looked at it.

That’s it for today.  See you tomorrow.

Happy Thursday.

December 18

Today for our kindness advent we preloaded all those trinket and gumball machines outside our local grocery store.  This was rather quick and fun.  And I did let the boys each use one quarter.  They both chose skittles.  Huddy was all like, “These Skittles sure are hard.”  I was all like, “Yeah, that’s called stale.”

I love doing all these different things with them.  I love talking it over and discussing…like how we would feel if we were the ones who found all the quarters in the machines.  It’s fun to hear what they are thinking.

Tomorrow we are taking some school supplies Ms. Flowers needs to her classroom.  Anything that involves Susan is sure to be fun.

And two quick things.

1)  Today is elf day at Harper’s school.  How flippin’ fun right?!?!  Josh was working out of town most of last week and Harper was pretty sad one night when she was going to bed.  She was missing him bad.  To make her smile as I left her room I sang part of Buddy’s Christmas gram from the movie Elf.  “I love you, I love you, I love you.”  My voice getting higher and higher.  No smile from Harper, but through her tears and without missing a beat she replied with, “Oooh!  What’s a Christmas gram?  I want one.”

And yes, we are the people who still have pumpkins on our porch.  We’re dual celebrating.

And 2)  Today and tomorrow are bake days.  We have lots of baked goodness to share because…cough, cough…baked goods can change the world.  Today was gooey butter cake, nutter butter balls, oreo balls (which are nutter butter balls just subbed oreos) and chocolate chip brownie Oreo cups (smushed break & bake chocolate chip cookie dough in a muffin tin, then an oreo on top of that and then a spoon full of brownie mix…bake 15 minutes @ 350…yeah, that.)  Tomorrow we’re rockin’ snickerdoodles, chewy M&M cookies and Andes mint cookies.  Can I get a Amen?  God bless baked goods.

Happy Wednesday!

December 17

I cannot believe Christmas is only a week away.  Which leaves us with only 8 kindness advents left.  For today’s, we bought lunch for the person behind us in the Chick-fil-a drive thru.  I actually was cracking myself up as I stared creepily at the lady behind us.  The line was long since it was lunch time, so I had quite the time to inspect her.  I am officially stalker qualified.  She seemed to really have it together.  Cute hair and sunglasses.  I liked when she put her eye drops in.  I was ridiculously enamored.  We had our windows rolled down and from the way, way back came a whispering voice, “Mom, what if she hears us talking about her?”  I laughed and told Hudson there was no way the lady would hear us.  He then proceeded to yell at the top of his lungs, “Hey lady behind us.  We’re going to buy your lunch.”  Yeah.

Amon was in full on sleep mode, which is kind of a given.  He is also rockin’ sweat pants.  And his hair may be getting a tish out of control.  The other day we were at a birthday party and I looked over at him walking through the party and realized he looked a tad homeless.  A) Maybe I should dress him in real pants and not mainly in sweat pants or no pants at all.  And B)  He may need to get at least a trim.  When his hair is wet its so long down his back.  He would make a beautiful girl.

Tomorrow we will be loading up those trinket and bubble gum machines outside of Kroger with quarters.  My kids are pumped…mainly because they are hoping I give them a quarter too.  We’ll see.

And thank you so much to everyone who shopped my key fob sale this morning.  You guys are crazy amazing.  All the orders that have already been paid via paypal are actually already at the post office.  I was a serious packaging machine this morning.  Pretty packages are the best packages.

Thanks for stopping by.  Thanks for taking time out of your day to sit for a bit and read my nonsense.  It means the world.

Happy Tuesday!

December 14,15 & 16

Well it was a wild and busy weekend.  Saturday was complete chaos in a wonderful way.  As we were driving to a birthday party late in the afternoon, Hudson asked about our kindness for the day.  Ugh.  We absolutely and totally had forgotten.  It happens and this year I’m choosing not to stress about being human, so no kindness advent for Saturday.

Sunday’s kindness advent was way fun.  The kids handed out books to kiddos shopping with their parents in Target.  Everyone was super kind and not weird about it at all which was different for a change.  We’re all huge fans of children’s literature so it was quite fun picking out all the books.  A little tip for you locals:  Every winter and spring Scholastic has a huge sale at their warehouse in Nashville.  Almost every thing is 50-80% off.  It’s one of my most favorite things to attend.  All brand new books.  So incredibly fun to walk aisle after aisle of the Scholastic warehouse…just so many many books.  They have other sales else where so check out their website and find a sale near you.

Today we shared Sonic happy hour.  It’s no secret we dig happy hour, so it only makes sense to pay it forward in the form of 1/2 price drinks.

Tomorrow we are paying for the person in line behind us at a drive thru.  Ummmm, I’m totally thinking it will be a Chick-a-fila kind of day.

Okay, lets see.  I feel like there are so many things to tell you.  Oh, so tomorrow I’m going to have a key fob sale at 8am sharp.  If you buy a set and pay via paypal I will ship them out tomorrow (same day) and they should most definitely arrive before Christmas.  If you pay by check, sadly, they probably won’t make it in time because I give all checks 5 business days to clear before shipping. There will be several sets for sale…all fun colors and patterns.  Sure to make for a great little present or stocking stuffer.  I will post all the available sets under the “Currently Available” tab at the top.

This weekend we got our creative groove on in so many ways.  I recently got in a family picture canvas and this required me to redo our big collage wall.  If you cannot tell A) I love color.  and B) I believe there is no such thing as having too many collage walls.

Harper has to take a small gift for each of her classmates for their Christmas party.  She decided on glitter pens which completely makes sense if you know Harper.  Color and art and glitter and rainbows are her love language.  We made little washi tape name flags and tied on pom pom yarn and bakers twine.

Today is Susan’s birthday.  AKA Ms. Flowers.  AKA Aunt Susan.  AKA Soooooosan (said in creepy ghost voice).  I am her room mom this year and I am actually quite the terrible room mom.  Amon makes things very difficult like volunteering at school.  But if there’s one thing I can do, it’s send out emails and harass parents to send in cash for her birthday.  As a former teacher, money and gift cards and the way to go to tell that special teacher “thank you”…and maybe a key fob 🙂  So after collecting the moola I needed a way to package it.  I almost sewed all the bills together to make a garland, but then realized that probably wasn’t the best idea.  So I went with a cute jar.  Who wouldn’t want a cute jar full of cash?!?!

And today we ate cake and sang.  Baskin Robbins ice cream cake?  Amazingly delicious.  Chocolate cake + mint chocolate chip ice cream = perfection.  I told the Baskin Robbins lady I needed color…and lots of it.  They delivered.

And even though Harper is blurry in this picture, I still love it.  Susan was making her wish and Harper was just grinning.  She adores Ms. Flowers…as do the rest of us Kelleys.  Happy birthday Susan…we love you like crazy cakes.

Hope your weekend was great and your week started off fantastically good!  Don’t forget, key fob sale tomorrow morning at 8am.  See you there 🙂

Happy Monday!