Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Sending lots of love and good wishes to you and yours as we spend the day the five of us all healthy and under one roof (that was my Christmas wish from last year).
Four generations of Kulow men in one kitchen...

Zeke and Grandpa Mark

Riah opened his first present!

Ki opening his present from Grandpa Mark

Watching Zeke open his present from Grandpa Mark

Riah not being so patient to get his train out to play with.

Ever want to know if a Kulow is concentrating? 

Ki trying to put together his train present from Grandpa Mark

Zeke enjoying from cherry pie

Christmas Morning

Ki got some Lightening McQueen Ear phones.

Michael bought the boys tool boxes and Zeke starting putting some of his tools to good use, opening his presents.

Riah laying on his pillow from Great Grandma Betty.
Well that is all for today!  Enjoy!

Thursday, December 22, 2011


My mom once told me in fifth grade when I made my first best friend, "Hold on to her, not everyone gets a best friend like her in their lives."  Here I am now much older than fifth grade and not only am I still friends with that fifth grade friend but I have been truly blessed by a group of friends here in Colorado.  I can say that I have two really good friends here, ones that I can be totally real with.  You know those days that life is kind of sucky and you just want to pout - these friends are the ones to call up. 
Yesterday I was reminded of just how blessed I am! 
Yesterday morning the boys and I went over to my friend's house and the boys played with her girls and she and I chatted.  She expressed how she was just not loving life right now and I listened and then we went on, we didn't dwell on it but she spoke her peace and we laughed about it.  After a few hours of hanging out together the boys and I have to leave to take another San Diego friend to the airport.  As we were driving home from the airport my friend from the morning called and said she needed to borrow my crock pot so I ran it over.  Just those simple things reminded me what it is to have friends around to help you out, chat with and just be myself around.
As I was driving back home I felt compelled to text my dear fifth grade friend, she and I exchanged texts back and forth most of the evening.  She and I have not lived in the same state since we were in seventh grade.  This summer she came out here for a visit and it was as if no time had passed since our last visit many years earlier. 
While texting with that friend another friend called me and asked me to go out with her for a pedicure today.  She and I became friends a few years ago, we come from very different worlds (literally) and yet we can yuck it up for hours. 
So to the three ladies that made my day yesterday I am truly grateful!  Sarah Davenport, you are my forever friend - always on my mind and always wishing that some day in the future we can live in the same state once again.  Stacey Brand, you rock - who would have known four years ago when I was placed at your MOPS table that we would have become such good friends.  Piedad Rodriguez, you are awesome - I am so glad that three years ago you and your family found it fitting to move right next door to me!  You three women are a huge blessing to me - more than you can know!

Snap Shots

I thought I would post a few pictures from the last few days... Enjoy!
Just a few of Riah's teeth.  He has four more on the top!  Oh yeah, the bumps on his forehead - the wonders of learning to stand up.

A little morning dance party in our house.  The boys love rocking out to Adele, but then again who doesn't?

Zeke decorating his envelopes for grandparents.

Ki decorating his envelopes for grandparents.

Zeke and his friend Lily doing a show for us moms.

Ki watching the above mentioned show sporting some princess heals.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Dream World

In my dream world... which trust me there are a ton - I am a great photographer, a writer and in my spare time I am a message therapist.  A wide variety I know however these are three things that have always intrigued me, maybe some day I will be able to explore each of these options fully however in the mean time, here I am - writing a family blog, taking pictures of my little men and occasionally spoiling my husband and boys with some reflexology foot rubs.
Is it just me or what... the world of photography is an overwhelming one?  I have spent hours pouring over site after site trying to figure out which camera would be the best, which lens and all the gadgets as well - and that is just the actual camera.  Sakes Alive!  The purchase of a camera is a big thing, it is very costly and from what I am seeing can be very specific to the types of pictures you desire.
In the time being I want a camera that will allow me to capture the times I have with my boys.  I want something that may offer me the chance to capture the special times of my friends little ones too.  Too lofty?  Maybe, but that is what I am thinking about.  I know that there is a lot to learn about it all but for now I am snapping pictures like a fool of my little men and using iPhoto to touch them up and change them ever so slightly to what my mind's eye sees. 
Any ideas or suggestions will be welcome.
Is there a lens that you can't live without?  What editing program do you use?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Thank you Pinterest

A BIG shout out thank you to Pinterest!  I have been a Pinterest whore lately and it has paid off.  I have quite a few things that I still have on my boards that I want to make and some that I have tried my hand at already.  Here are my latest things that I have made compliments of Pinterest ideas...
I made our family stockings.  I realized that Ki and Riah did not have any so rather than buy two that wouldn't match what we already had I decided to make some myself.  Total cost was $7 for all five of them - not bad, eh?  The stocking foot is made out of natural cotton and the top is of muslin and then I added a little lace trim around all of them and the hanger is a satin ribbon.

As you can see for the boys I just bought monogram iron ons for their first names.  See "Z" for Zechariah.  I don't have anything on mine or Michael's but a friend of mine made some stockings and found really cute "mr. and mrs." patches that I might see where she got those from and do that for ours.

These are two sparkling cider bottles and a soda bottle that I have been saving and just spray painted them, added a little texture with some natural sisal and purchased two calla lilies which are my favorite.  Total cost for this project was $4 that includes the flowers, paint and sisal  (which I still have a ton of for other projects.)

The complete look... I know it is bare but I prefer the less is more approach.  I think I might add a little something here and there, I was actually thinking that the other tall "vase" needed some calla lilies too... they are 50% off so they are only $1 - we'll see. 

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Close Up Obsession

So recently I have discovered my obsession for close ups.  I think that my obsession has been born out the fact that it feels like every time I blink my babies are growing up.  I love their little cheeks, their little teeth and their grins - none of which can be fully captured unless I snap some close ups. 
Today we went to the park for a little energy release and then we headed out to Bailey to go Christmas tree hunting.  We did score a tree but it has not been prettied yet... maybe in the next day or two.  So more pictures to come from that... until then...

Saturday, December 10, 2011

My husband rocks!

Okay, lately I have been bragging a bunch on my husband... not only is he a computer whisperer but yesterday he comes home and asks me, "Do you want your Christmas present early or do you want to wait?"  I tell him I will wait and then he tells me, too bad.  He takes me to my car and in the driver seat are these.  I have been saying that I am in need of some new sunglasses but I didn't think he was listening or that he would just go out and buy some for me without me even trying them on to see if I liked them.  Well, he did an awesome job!  Not only are the cute but they are super comfy!  Way to go Kulow - you rock!

Happy Birthday Jesus

Today a friend of mine hosted a Happy Birthday Jesus jammie party and we had a blast!  Here are a few pictures that I snapped of the festivities.  
Zeke decorating his candy cane shaped pancake

Ki much more interested in the toys then the party

Reading "J is for Jesus"

Riah bug

Zeke and Grace

Ki ready to blow out his candle

Happy Birthday Jesus

My handsome boy

Chow down!

A little post party game

We got home and I had three very tired little boys...

Guest Post: Tis the season for Capitalism

I have spent many years perfecting the art of minimal shopping at Christmas time.  I can honestly say that in the last decade I have not had to face the boorish crowds in the stores or have had to become one of the boorish myself.   From the presents that are bought in August to the online purchases (Online shopping does not count as shopping since you have no photos to send into "The People of Walmart"), I rarely have had to brave the stores at Christmastime.  The remainder of the presents can usually be picked up at Costco and since we would be attending the store anyway for regular household stuff I get a pass on calling the bi-monthly trip "Christmas Shopping."  Even the past couple of years has not been a huge stress since the boys are not yet of an age that they know what they "want" for Christmas and even the presents that are purchased for their enjoyment often sit next to them as they play with the wrapping and the box the said present came in.  This year has brought a slight increase in the whole Christmas shopping stress level.  I have been discussing with Andrea for a couple of months now that we should probably get the two older boys a kids version of an IPad.  This would relive a bit of redness on their backsides while protecting a valuable piece of electronics that is Andrea's main computer.  I had noticed that Leap Frog had already stocked the stores with a LeapPad and the VTech would be marketing theirs around Thanksgiving.  Having not had too much time to delve deeply into the pros and cons of each kid friendly tablet I kept reminding myself that I "really need to do the research" so that I knew what brand to buy the boys from Christmas.  My schedule finally became manageable right before Thanksgiving and once the proper mental recovery was completed I set out to get my research done, Christmas being 4 weeks away.  Black Friday started for the maniacs while I was in dreamland at midnight.  Even the slightly more sensible people starting Black Friday at 6:00 am would find me barely rising from a slumber.  Get on the computer slightly after 8 and start my online shopping.  All the stores basically had the same prices for both the VTech ($79) and the LeapPad ($99) and carried them in stock so I started looking up the numerous ratings and comments forums from several websites.  Within an hours time I went downstairs to discuss the options with my wife and to fix her something to eat since she stubbornly refuses to cook when I have a day off.  Back upstairs to the computer to purchase the two LeapPads and my shopping for the season would pretty much be complete.  Wait. What!?  I am on the Amazon website the clicking the link to check out but I must be on the wrong one, this one is priced at $199.  Go back to the beginning, clear out my history and start from the home page.  Same thing.  I was just on this an hour ago and I am sure the price was only $99.  Go to another site. Sold Out and no price listed.  Now I am getting a bit concerned.  I have one very simple task and it is becoming not so simple.  Well, there is no hope for it.  The Amazon price is now at $215 and I notice that the only options are from approved sellers and not Amazon itself.  Time to contemplate going out into the maddening world of Black Friday.  I cannot recall a time that I was actually in a store on such a hectic shopping day.  I have avoided Black Friday like it was the Black Plague.   Black Friday is for skiing and attempting to set new eating records that were not accomplished the day before.  No one in their right mind attempts to shop on Black Friday.  But these are my boys and the decision is made to attempt this monumental challenge.  ToysRUs is only 5 miles away but oh, it takes so much longer to drive there than it should.  With all the once-a-year drivers on the road seemingly not even aware that driving with their car on the dotted white line at 18 mph in a 45 mph zone would be a traffic offense if the normally numerous patrol persons were not hiding for the day.  Arrive to find the store not overly crowded but with the remains of the yellow caution tape still strewn down the sidewalk as a reminder that this whole thing started over 15 hours ago.  My mind starts to comprehend that the chances that the one and only item that I want will be in the store is about as probable as my numbers for the lottery are coming up any time soon.  Found the isle, found the shelf, found the big empty hole where boxes of LeapPads once sat.  Do I even try and find an employee to see if any have been stashed in the back for procrastinating shoppers?  It is just not going to happen.


A little side note:  This morning, I heard rumor that ToysRUs had four and that two Targets had some as well.  I woke Michael up at 7:15 and he was out the door at 7:20am ToysRUs opened at 7am and by the time Michael got there they were sold out.  He headed to the first Target that said that they had three, Michael got there fifteen minutes before it opened and there was a line of five.  He decided to head to the next Target that had an undisclosed amount.  Michael was the twelfth person in line and ran to the back of the store the minute it opened to find one... Michael being the good guy gave the lady that got there next.  I guess he figured to have one would be silly... in my mind I would have scored the one and then next time we only have to worry about swiping one.  Ruthless?!?!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Back Up and Running

You know how on Tuesday I said I wonder how long it would take to light a fire under my husband to get a computer for me...  Well Wednesday afternoon Michael spent tinkering around with my computer and I am back up and running!  Yahooooo!  All it needed was some TLC and thankfully my husband speaks computer.  I went from less than a gigabyte to now having two, there is a new battery in the mail to me now and we are looking at an operating system upgrade.  My husband is such a stud!  Needless to say, had I just done it I would have paid through the nose for everything at the Apple Store.  Michael found the gigabytes at a local store for $32, the battery online for $40 and the operating system for $30.  Had I done it through Apple the ram was like $100, the battery was $150 and the same for the operating system.  Way to go hubby!
So now I have my computer back, it is working super fast and I have yet to experience the black screen of death.  I am so happy!  Oh, yeah and I can have my iPhoto open and be on the internet at the same time, which means that I can again print up pictures that I have been needing to do for a while now - sorry Hedricks!
I am one happy girl! 
Here are a few pictures from the last few days...
Ki being a silly goose wearing my tennies

I have a picture of the two other boys in this same suit and I have done their bathroom in penguins and so Riah is the last one for the picture frame in the suit.

My snow babies - it is has been really cold here lately and the boys have been dressing in their snow gear to play in the backyard a little and get some of their crazies out.

Not the best picture, but Zeke got to go to work with Michael on Tuesday and he was too excited about it.  Here he is all ready for his work day with daddy!