packing and unpacking

One day I’ll have two girls sharing a room. That means I’ve had to clear out all my ‘junk’ from FireCracker’s room. Several of you commented on my statement the other day, “I’m a crafter. Not a hoarder.” These pictures are just more proof. So many little things that a crafter could never throw away – they just might be needed one day.Β  And with crafting, sometimes all you need is a tiny piece. Nothing is too small to keep. All my fabrics and non-hoarded items are packed up and will have to head to a new home within our home so another bed can fit in here (though it will be a long time before Little One will be sleeping there). Anyway, this is how the girls’ room is looking right now.

And because way too many people read blogs and think the blogger’s home is never a mess…here is what the playroom looked like when I was taking pictures of the girls’ room. I’ve showed the boys a million times how to put a blanket or sheet down before they dump the legos. They never remember. However, they are required to clean up Legos each day without my help. I’ve told them we could lose a small child….or a creepy old doll…in all those Legos.


While I am packing up some boxes, I’ve been unpacking others. Sweet friends have been surprising me with little gifts for our girl. The blanket on the bottom was made by a blog reader’s grandmother. She knits/crochets blankets for her local children’s hospital, homeless shelter and senior citizen homes. She heard about our Little One and sent blankets for all 5 of my kids.

Jewelry keepsakes from friends who have also adopted from China. A traditional bracelet and a necklace charm from Jiayin Designs that has our daughter’s name characters (I had to blur out some of it). I hope it is a keepsake she will treasure….it is so delicate and beautiful, like my girl.

We’ve got a stockpile of new books growing. The boys have been practicing their Mandarin. I struggle. We have a teaching cd with songs. The kids sing it all the time….in Mandarin. I, again, struggle. I can’t sing in english, nonetheless in Mandarin!

The very first thing I bought FireCracker was a pair of Gracious May shoes. These are Little One’s first shoes. Eeekkkkk cuteness!

FireCracker found matching pjs for her and her sister. I think she might explode with happiness the first time she gets to wear them with her sister.

Last month I scored this find from Sparrow Mercantile. I am wanting to make a little family of little wooden dolls to go with it.

An unexpected package arrived from an online friend…a yellow doily…

But not just any yellow doily….a yellow doily blanket! I can’t wait to photograph a certain baby girl on this!

So all that has been unpacked, but a lot of my crafty stuff has been tucked in boxes. I’ve got a lot of computer work to get done, but as soon as I do I am ready for some time to relax and create. Both girls have birthdays coming up and I’m ready to start working on some handmade gifts.Β  It makes me giddy just thinking about it….

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  • mandi@herbanhomestead - Wow- what lovely items you have been gifted with! I know from our experience that something thoughtful like this goes a long way. Somedays I would pray for “just a little encouragement in our adoption, Lord”. I’m sure finding these sweet treasures in the mail served to encourage your heart!

  • clumsy L. - Hi Ashley,

    It’s really sweet that your whole family is preparing for your Little One.
    Have you already heard of the Bai Jia Bei (it seems that it has been translated as 100 Wishes Quilt) ? It’s a custom in some parts of China : family members and friends give a square fabric to the mother for her to prepare a blanket (or quilt) to welcome the newborn and to wish him a good life.
    In fact in chinese a quilt is always a Bai Jia Bei (???) or a blanket from 100 families

  • Katie - Ooh, I love that little house! So fun. And it’s fun to see your house too, even when it’s messy. πŸ™‚

  • Dawn - How fun – the jammies and blanket are my faves. Prayers continue that your letter arrives soon!

  • jackie - Awesome that you are being real. That little girl is gonna be loved more that she knows what do. Can’t wait til you bring her home!

  • MixedMolly - You’re right, it is easy to think that every blogger has a spotless home, when we all know full well that that can’t be true with little ones πŸ™‚ What precious gifts! Your friends are a blessing.

  • Lori - I love all the gifts. the little house, the yellow doily and the pink blanket…the legos send me over the edge and I always wondered if you had legos around…I find them everywhere and I sometimes get so sick of them…but then I see my kids playing and creating together and I smile…so it balances out…love the jewelry. precious. This too shall pass…the waiting.

  • Sara Torbett - This post made me teary. (ok-so I’m preggo and a tired mama from an almost one-year old so that might be to blame!) Thank-you for showing real pictures of your home, toys and crafts galore. What sweet relief to see others being real! All your sweet things for your new girl made me melt. I am so, so excited for the day she is home with her family! Praying it’s soon!

  • N - The yellow blanket is unbelievable! There is so much joy being shared because of your little song.

  • Suzanne - oh goodness, the yellow doily is beautiful! and that doll house is amazing! I can’t wait until we get to see your beautiful little family all together! Have a great day!

  • amy jupin - this post makes me happy.
    reading things like “the girls’ room” and “both girls have birthdays coming up”.

  • Amy - Such beautiful things!

  • Collette - Hello, I have read your blog for a while and never have left a comment, but today just wanted to tell you that you are amazing! I get up each morning and hope I get to click on your blog and have it say the letter has arrived! Hang in there, she will be worth the wait:)

  • jennt - such lovely gifts! I love the necklace and the yellow doily blanket- how fun is that!
    What mandarin cd do you have? I have been looking at software and books to learn chinese but there is so much out there. I would love to know what you are using.

  • Casey - I love the little dollhouse, so sweet! and that yellow willow blanket, wow! Now I’m itching to make one in bright yellow

  • Jen @ RamblingRenovators - Your excitement is infectious. Hope today is the day that your letter arrives.

  • Dena - Love how Firecracker is SO excited for a sister! Love those PJs… where did you find them? LOVE the beautiful doily blankie and can’t wait to see pics of your new little one on it.

  • Emily - You’re nesting! How fabulous πŸ™‚ I send “today is the day for the Campbells” vibes into the universe for your every day. TODAY IS THE DAY!

  • nicole @ deliajude - that doily is a stunning backdrop for your baby. blessings.

  • Joanna W - Was listening to Sara Groves (my favorite) today and thought of you when I really listened to the lyrics….

    …When you see a child walk free,
    It makes you dream of jubilee

    The wait is slow, and we’ve so far to go
    Keep your eyes on the prize, hold on…

    Sara just says things better than anyone else…

  • Emily @ Peck Life - The embroidered house and yellow doily blanket are pretty much my 2 favorite things EVER!!!!! They will look so beautiful in their room!!!! πŸ™‚

  • Amanda torres - Girl, those Legos almost gave me a heart attack. Thanks for sharing. I don’t think I have ever seen that many of them at one time. Pretty awesome.

  • Eva - Now, that’s a lot of legos. You’re a brave woman.

    I, too, have lots of my sewing stuff in my daughter’s room, which she will be sharing with her little sister. But I still have time, as we are still paperchasing for her (and no referral yet).

  • giozi - Yes you have a lot of work. And yes repite to yourself that you ar crafter and not accumulator :D. This doll is really ugly, ha ha ha.
    Love the blankets, the pijamas and of course the rug.
    You see really excited, I feel happy for your. THe little shoes are adorables.

    Big hug

  • Rose - The yellow blanket would be awesome to take monthly photos on. So we can see how much Little One grows.

    Hope today is your day!

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - OK. That doll house is the super cutest one I’ve ever seen. Ever.

  • Susan - OK here are the facts . . . I’m finding myself checking your BLOG several times a day to see if you’ve heard about your adoption sooooooooooooooooooooooooo I know you must also be excited soooooooooooooooooooooooooo I’m praying for your family. That’s all . . .

  • AshleyAnn - Susan – thank you! We are so ready to hear some news too!

  • packing and unpacking Β» | Grandma Network - […] Full Article- follow the link below packing and unpacking Β» This entry was posted in app, birthdays, blog, BlogHer, blogs, book, Books, craft, crafts, […]

  • Michelle Gautreaux - what beautiful things you will have for your little one!! I’ve been reading for quite some time and enjoy your blog, the stories you share and the creative things you bring to this world. I have you on my prayer list in hopes that your little one will arrive soon.
    On another note, can you tell me how you did that gray floor is that a post I might have missed somewhere? It looks like it’s just on wood, but I love that design!

  • Amy - I have to know more about your adorable crewelwork house from Sparrow Mercantile. How can I get one???????

  • Kelly - Such a fun post! That dollhouse is amazing! Love the yellow doily rug. I too had to pack up all my crafty stuff when my son was born but it’s making it’s way back out into the open. Those pjs and shoes are both *too* cute! We have the Dwell Studios book Touch and Feel Farm that y’all have and my husband laughs at me because where the last page says “Touch the cow, do it now”, it sounds too bossy to me so I always read it “Touch the cow, I’ll show you how”. πŸ™‚ Kelly

  • AshleyAnn - Kelly – this is hilarious!

  • AshleyAnn - Amy – I purchased it from her etsy shop. Just click on her name (all text in red is actually links…so it will take you to her store)…though I don’t think there is another one.

  • AshleyAnn - Michelle – here is that link (it is also under the DIY tab at the top)

  • Virginia Bibler - Ashley – I have an etsy shop where I sell little wooden dolls.
    I would LOVE to make a set for your adorable new doll house! I cant seem to locate your email address…can you email me and let me know if this is ok. I would need a shipping address, too!

  • Kara - Have you heard of Swoop Bags? A friend of mine designed them and started her own company, they are perfect for Legos. And maybe even a future sponsor? Check them out,, they are also on Pinterest. She has no idea I’m giving her a plug, I just couldn’t help it when I saw the photo of Legos. She has two sons and I know Legos were a huge inspiration for the bags.

  • Elizabeth - aww ~ i LOVE that yellow blanket & those ADORABLE shoes!! fun, fun!
    crazy legos have you got ~ my guys would TOTALLY play for hours w/ your guys! legos are a daily staple :0)

  • AshleyAnn - Kara – I just looked those up…amazing bags. I am thinking I need to get me one…or five!