Life Love Larson: July 2012


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Twelve Months of Giving Back: July 2012

This month, we decided to shop for and donate items to the Ronald McDonald House of Kansas City.  The Ronald McDonald House provides accommodations for families seeking medical treatment for their children far away from home.  Here is a statement from their website…

Our Ronald McDonald House program provides a “home-away-from-home” for families so they can stay close by their hospitalized child at little or no cost. Our Houses are built on the simple idea that nothing else should matter when a family is focused on healing their child – not where they can afford to stay, where they will get their next meal or where they will lay their head at night to rest. We believe that when a child is hospitalized the love and support of family is as powerful as the strongest medicine prescribed.

Each RM House has a wishlist of items that they are always in need of.  The KC RM House also had a “Top 10 Wishlist”, so we decided to get a few things from that list…


We plan to drop off these items to the RM House next week!  Please check out their website for further information and to find a chapter near you.

Have you been doing any giving back lately?  I would love to hear what you are doing!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Lego Soap

We have a Lego fanatic in our house.  His name is Drew.  More to come on how we store the seemingly millions of pieces we have acquired, but until then, I made Drew a little surprise for his bathroom a few weeks ago.  I asked him to go wash his hands, and he was shocked at how all those pieces got inside his soap! :)

I saw this idea on Pinterest. Buy some soap, remove all labels, insert Legos.


Speaking of Legos, Kate recently got her own “girly” Legos that are now on the market.  Why didn’t Lego come out with these long ago?  Girls like to build and imagine and create too!



Look at that concentration! 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

State Silhouettes, Revisited

Last year I made and framed state silhouettes to be used as art in our last house (to celebrate all of our moves).  You can find the complete post and DIY instructions here.  When we moved into our new house in Kansas, I wanted to change them up a bit, and of course, add KS to the mix!  And, lucky for me, Kansas is about the easiest state to trace and cut!


The changes include new scrapbook paper, more cohesive frames, new mats, and little red hearts have been added to the area of the state in which we lived.  The frames, paper, and mats are from Michael’s (the frames come in a 2-pack and be sure to use your 40% coupon).



The states are hung near our back door, in the kitchen eating area.  I find they are such a conversation piece.  Every person that walks in our door says something about them.  I wanted them to be easily seen, but in a casual space in the house. They are now much more streamlined and clean looking and add a nice little pop of color.


States on our journey: 

Iowa (Iowa City) – Where Steve and I went to college, met, and started dating
Texas (Dallas) - First move right out of college, first real jobs, first real apartment, shortest amount of time spent here
Florida (Orlando) – Got married while living in Florida, lived 2 miles from Universal Studios, enjoyed being newlyweds before kids!
North Carolina (Charlotte) – One of our most favorite cities we have lived.  Bought our first house here.
South Carolina (Columbia) – Longest we have ever lived in any one place (3 years), both kids were born here, made some dear friends here, bought our second house.
Texas (San Antonio) – Bought our third house, loved our neighborhood, only lived there for 16 short months.  A wonderful city!
Kansas (KC) – Bought our fourth house, kids will start school here, trying to settle in and settle down for a little while!  Loving it!

Texas, of course, gets two hearts since we repeated this state!


Time will tell if we ever move again (I stopped trying to predict these things 3 moves ago)!

Because moving has been a large part of of lives, I love having this little reminder of where we have been and how far we have come together.

Linking up with:

Monday, July 23, 2012

Homemade Dog Treats

The kids and I were wanting to try something new, so we whipped up some homemade dog treats for Samson.  Two ingredients, bake, and you are done!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Recent Happenings

We are continuing to enjoy our summer despite the excessive heat warnings and drought conditions.  I have officially given up on my yard…it is fried and crispy, but I am determined to keep my plants and flowers going with lots of hand watering!  My kids don’t start preschool until after Labor Day, so summer is just about half over for us.  We still have a lot more we want to accomplish, but here is a little taste of what we have been up to!

We have had two water balloon fights so far.  Can you guess which bucket is Kate’s? :)


Handwriting practice!


Always planting, watering, and playing in the dirt…


And I have been picking weeds (as that seems to be all that is growing in my yard without the rain)!


We hit up the Farmer’s Market…











Played at Deanna Rose Farm…



A favorite past time…



Went for a convertible ride…


And Steve and I had a chance to see James Taylor in concert last night at an outdoor venue.  So fun!


I hope you are all enjoying your summer and I hope you are getting rain where you live!  Please send it to KS!  I know I have been a blogging slacker lately, but the summer pace is just a little slower and I am going with it.  Lots of projects to share so stay tuned! 

Also, I just joined Instagram!  You can find and follow me at amlarson3.  Cheers!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Ten on Ten: July 2012

Take 10 pictures on the 10th of the month to capture life’s beauty in the day to day. Linking up at A Bit of Sunshine, the original inspiration!

ten on ten button

July 10th was a very normal day in the Larson household…

1.  Up at 6:30am.  Blogging about my first giveaway-don’t forget to enter!IMG_8115

2.  Drew is my early riser and is usually up before Kate, so today we practiced writing.  You can tell what he is in to right now…skeleton, fight, ninja, earth, fire…hilarious!IMG_8116

3.  Paint deliberation…my front door is getting a makeover!IMG_8117

4.  A trip to Lowes.  These two could probably find their way around Lowes blindfolded!IMG_8121

5.  These two could probably find their way around every grocery store blindfolded as well!IMG_8122

6.  Afternoon pool time.  Ah, to be young and carefree…love it…IMG_8125

7.  Local sweet corn for dinner…IMG_8130

8.  Someone has decided that she actually might like a vegetable…IMG_8135

9.  Very close to finishing up the process of planting a tree with Daddy.  More to come on this!IMG_8142

10.  Snuggled up after a long day…why are my children going to bed so late this summer?!?!IMG_8143

Hope you had a great 10th!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


I am so excited to be hosting my first-ever giveaway, courtesy of RAMSIGN, a small Danish company specializing in manufacturing and selling classic enamel signs (house signs and house numbers) based upon original designs and techniques.  I am so happy to be doing a giveaway on a product I find to be so unique and charming. 

Please check out the RAMSIGN website at to view all of the designs, and I encourage you to “like” their Facebook Page at!/pages/Ramsign/170227776415689.

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Giveaway Details:
1.  One lucky winner will be able to choose any RAMSIGN ( number sign (not name signs or address plaques) with 1-5 digits of any size and design.  RAMSIGN will produce and deliver the sign directly to the winner.

2.  I will be randomly choosing the winner on Monday, July 16th, so please tell your friends to come enter!

3.  Enter the giveaway by leaving a comment at the end of the post and tell me what number you would choose for a sign.  Be sure to include your email address so I can easily notify the winner. 

4.  I would love for you to subscribe to the blog or become a follower, but it is NOT necessary to be entered to win.  One entry per person please!

5.  Giveaway open to all readers world wide.

These signs could be used in so many cute ways, not just for house numbers:  birth year, lucky number, number of people in your family, year you were married, etc.  I can see these signs in any room of the house, interior or exterior, including resting on a bookshelf or for a pop of color in a kitchen or a child’s room.  What a great gift idea too!

Thanks for entering and good luck!

Monday, July 9, 2012

DIY Elevated Dog Bowls

We have an eight year old Great Dane, Samson, that we have had since he was 8 weeks old.  He is our third kid and is about as sweet as they come.IMG_7252Large dogs must eat/drink from an elevated dog bowls.  Since we are DIY kind of people, we made our own version when he was little and have been using the same method ever since.IMG_7215These are cheap side tables from Target (I think we got them 5 years ago for $10 each).  Steve used a jigsaw to cut a circle to inlay the dog bowls.  The stainless steel bowls are from a pet store and we have had them for as long as we have had Samson.  These are the perfect height and the bowls can easily be lifted in and out.  IMG_7210

IMG_7216Before cutting, make sure to measure the bowl below the “lip” of your dog bowl so the bowl doesn’t fall through the hole!  I clean mine with soap and water and they have held up remarkably well.  This is our second set of DIY elevated tables in 8 years (which includes 4 moves with him).IMG_7212We purchased the first set of tables at IKEA, and this set is from Target.  This project is quick and inexpensive if you are in need of elevated dog bowls for your pooch!IMG_7215

IKEA still sells these LACK side tables for $9.99.

LACK Side table IKEA Easy to assemble. Low weight; easy to move.

I couldn’t have a “dog'” post without mentioning our second Great Dane, Hillary, who passed away a year ago in March.  If you are a dog lover, you can read about her here.

Linking up with:

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Summer Trip

We just got back from a week-long trip to visit family and friends.  Des Moines to stay with my sister for a night, then on to Chicago where both sets of Grandparents and some of our college friends live.  On the way home, we stopped for a few hours in Iowa City (our college town and where Steve and I met), back to Des Moines for the night, and finally home to KC.  We have not lived within driving distance of our families in over 10 years, so being able to take a little road trip was certainly fun for us, despite the sweltering, record breaking temps!
There is something so fun about getting away, and for me, something so great about getting back home and getting back in the routine!  Here is a little bit of our trip…
Drew & Kate went to the Arlington Race Track with Gma and Gpa Larson…
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