Monday, November 11, 2013

DIY- Paint Stirrer Wall Art

Something to know about me is that I am a frugal lady. I don't like to spend a ton on anything and I like to DIY if possible, which generally turns out to be cheaper for me.

This weekend I set out to make some cute stuff for our kids rooms. We just bought this house in March and moved into it at the end of June so it's still very much a work in progress and most of our efforts have been about painting and home improvement projects (ripping up crappy old tile, fixing floors, dry walling, replacing ceilings, etc) so not much of my time has gone into art or prettifying anything but that has changed now!

I decided to be a cheapskate and spend as little as possible on my projects, which turned out to be zero dollars. I picked up some paint color cards and paint stirrers for free at the home improvement store while we were in there and this is what I did with them-

First, I laid them out flat and straight

And then glued those together with a thin line of hot glue down each length (but not in the little dipped handle section). There is probably a better way of doing this that is sturdier but since this is going right up on the wall, I'm not terribly worried

All glued together and flipped over. I then took 2 soda can tabs and placed them about an inch and a half from either side, to be used to hang it on the wall. I glue these down.

Here's a closeup-

Then I thought up a word! I was also thinking of images I might like (a bunny came to mind) but I decided on 'wonder' after my husband suggested 'wonderful'. It seemed like the perfect word for my girl.

I sketched it in pencil first.

And then chose a paint (a pretty pop of turquoise that I already had laying around) and painted over that.

Ta-da! Whimsical, pretty wall art for zero monies, assuming you have some glue and spare paint. Not too shabby! I haven't hung it yet because I want it to be part of a collage.

Those paint cards I got? I used those to make garlands for the kids beds. I simply made a stencil of a shape (heart for Al and star for Ollie) and then traced that onto the back of the paint sample cards, cut them out and glued them to a length of thin rope we had lying around. You could use twine, hemp, ribbon, yarn, string, anything! So again, zero monies spent! And if you had a big shaped paper cutter it would be even faster and easier.

Here are the garlands-

So that was my little weekend side project! I hope you've been up to something fabulous as well. Have a blessed day.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Life Talk- Children, toddlers and wanting more kids

We are entering our 4th month of trying to get pregnant and it's pretty rough, I have to say. I wasn't anticipating it taking us long at all. I kind of thought we'd get pregnant in the first month, like we did with our daughter. This 4 months stuff has me a little on edge and stressed but it gets easier as time goes by, strangely enough.

I'm the mommy of a nearly 6 year old boy (WHAT, but where's my babyyyyy) and a 2 and a half year old chickadee. Both are crazy amazing little humans. Annoying, frustrating, loud and totally brilliant. Smart as can be, gorgeous, SUPER blonde and pale with blue gray eyes just like Daddy and gaps in their front teeth.

Real talk- I got pregnant accidentally at 19 and that was really hard. I was using birth control and being safe but super sperm and over achieving egg decided to combine anyway. I was 20 when my son was born, my then boyfriend (now husband) and I got married 10 months later and we struggled for about 2 years to get a foot hold in life before we finally got our own place. We decided to start trying to have a baby soon after and got pregnant the first month. Finding out we were pregnant was amazing. We'd wanted to have more kids since our son turned 1 but we'd been waiting for the right time. Nine months later we had a beautiful bundle of Alice Mae and life was lovely as a family of 4.

We've struggled since with pregnancy losses. Two losses in 2 years. I had an IUD and apparently it wasn't placed properly (I was told when I had it out 4 months ago) and so it seems to have been the cause of miscarrying. Once back in November 2011 and then again this past July. It has been so hard. I'm not good at talking about it because it makes me feel raw and exposed. After our last miscarriage we decided to have the IUD taken out and that we were ready to start trying to get pregnant.

It took me a couple of weeks to commit to the decision to try for another baby and that's because I'm terrified. I am so scared that the IUD wasn't the cause, that it's my body. I've struggled so much with `not trusting my body, especially since July. I felt betrayed. To have something that you want so badly stripped away from you isn't something I have words for. I loved my babies, even though they were only in me for such a short time. I was a part of them as much as they were a part of me. I wanted them. They were ours and they were wanted and I hope that their little spirits felt that.

Deciding to have another baby meant deciding to put faith in my body to be able to get pregnant and stay pregnant and it has been a really hard journey so far. I am so scared of getting pregnant and so scared that I won't at the same time. When I do get that positive sign (I have to convince myself to say 'when' all the time and not 'if' because we want positive thoughts!) I will be totally over the moon but I don't think anything or anyone will keep me from being afraid until we hit the safe mark and even after that...

My husband is amazing and he keeps me grounded. I can talk to him about everything and that helps more than I'm sure he even knows.

And so we are 4 months in! Still trying, still not pregnant. Hoping and trying to have faith and remind myself that 4 months isn't very long at all!

Monday, November 4, 2013


Last night and this morning have been spent making cookies as a thank you gift to my parents for being awesome (and letting us borrow their car). I found this cool looking and easy recipe for amish sugar cookies and made up a batch last night. It makes A LOT of cookies, which is great because some can be given away and some enjoyed by my little family and put aside for first born/husband lunches.

This morning I decided to dress up some of the cookies with a bit of frosting. I usually make a simple glaze for sugar cookies but these are so fluffy that I thought they'd go well with an easy cream cheese frosting that wasn't too sweet.

It turned out smooth and delicious. The recipe is really simple! Here it is-

* 3 ounces of cream cheese, at room temp
* half a stick of butter, at room temp
* half a cup of powdered sugar
* 1 teaspoon of vanilla
* 2 teaspoons of lemon

I whipped the cream cheese, butter, vanilla and lemon juice together for a minute until it was smooth and then added my powdered sugar and mixed until well incorporated into my liquidy mixture. It resulted in a very fluffy, smooth, lemony frosting. Perfect for sugar cookies! Lemon glaze or frosting on sugar cookies is my favorite.

After I'd frosted about 2 dozen of my cookies I decided to pretty them up with some sprinkles. Chocolate, multi colored and X's and O's.

They turned out really cute! Not to mention super delicious. This recipe made a ton of cookies and the frosting/sprinkle combo added just the right touch to make it a loving, yummy thank you nod to the folks.
Miss Mae thinks so too, she was caught stealing sprinkles off the top!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Life Talk- Seasons

I read something today that made me stop and catch my breath because it was like it was written just for me. 'Don't waste the season of life you are in now because you want the next one to come.' I needed this reminder and I'll probably need it every day for a while.

It seems like a lot of my life lately has been lived waiting for the next season of life. Our little family has had quite a lot of struggle over the past year. It hasn't been an easy time at all and sad or difficult things have piled themselves on top of us and I have just been waiting. Waiting for the new house, waiting for relationships to get better, waiting for life to get easier. I don't mean it to sound as though I sit back and expect life to turn out how I want it. I work hard and try even harder. But life has been at a standstill for months. We finally seem to be in our new season and it's a good time. Things are falling into place and the life we have worked so hard for is coming together and working out.

There is always more though, isn't there? Always more to want or need. We have big life plans happening and it's difficult to wait on them sometimes. We want to expand our family. That is the hardest thing to wait for and my impatience is a beast to deal with sometimes. Wanting another child is a very raw and powerful thing and we have suffered through losses before so it is that much harder to not only make the decision to try to get pregnant but then to wait for it to happen. The waiting game. Oh how I dislike it.

I will have to keep that thought in my head though. This season of life is beautiful and if we are destined to have more children and expand our family, I want to always have these months being a mom of 2 and enjoy them. Having memories with my babies and good times with them is the most important thing. The next season will come.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Basket Painting

My week has been crazy busy, mostly the past 2 days. For some reason my motivation is at an all time high and I'm embodying the Goddess of home improvement. So much getting done! Cupboards painted. Ba-bam! First born's room painted. Ba-bam! Back door painted. Ba-bam! Check me out.

So basically I've been doing a lot of painting, haha! That's exactly what I'm going to talk about. It's a tutorial of sorts but I mean, it's not really. Just kind of something to throw some inspiration for others out into the ether.

My Mama brought me some nifty little baskets that will be divine for organizing odds and ends (the picture with my yarn sitting in it is one of those baskets!) and I wanted to jazz them up a little. The easiest way to do that was a quick and simple paint job! I am still unpacking various crafty odds and ends so my paint supply was rather limited but I did have a bright lime green and a pretty turquoise that I thought would be perfect.

I started with a plain basket, some paint and a little paint brush-

I wanted the turquoise to be kind of a white wash. Very subtle and with some of the basket weave showing through-
I wasn't terribly worried about neatness.
I decided to paint the bottom of it and then random stripes at the top and I quite like how it turned out!
I also painted my yarn basket in the lime green-
This one I painted a strip of the bottom and the rim and then dashes along the handle. It's so bright and happy!


That's my little side project for the weekend! So happy with them. 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Toddlers are Crazysauce

A Tale of a Broken Wrist

This will be a Mama post. To begin I would like to go back about 18 years to 8 year old April (that's me!) and retell the story of how I broke my first bone. Walking my Chihuahua down a hill, I tripped over him and broke my wrist. That's right. A Chihuahua caused me to break my wrist. You can laugh. It's okay. That was just the beginning of my bone breaking journey through childhood. From the age of 8 until I was 12 I broke about 8 bones and as an adult I've broken some toes and fingers but thankfully no more major bones. I have broken each wrist and ankle twice, though. Some sort of record right there. I was just a really adventurous child and I liked to try awesome things like tying a towel around my neck and attempting to fly off of our back porch. Looks like my daughter is following in my foot steps.

I give you exhibit A-

Baby girl the day she had her splint put on, which was last Friday. The story of how it happened is actually quite dramatic! Thursday night she and her big brother were playing and she managed to fall incredibly hard. A boom that shook the house. My first concern was that she had hit her head and then I realized she wasn't using her left arm at all, she wouldn't even raise it. Now, my child is a tantrum thrower but a crier she is not. She is tough as nails and so when she was sobbing for 20 minutes without pause, I knew something was up. She was also acting a little dizzy and then suddenly she was nodding off. My brain jumped to concussion and I called 911 in a very calm panic (parents will know what I mean!). The paramedics were actually not very nice but I won't get into that so much. I'll just say they made me feel like I worried for nothing and then told me she couldn't possibly have a broken arm or concussion and she was fine and then rushed off to what seemed to be a more exciting call. I considered them medical professionals and took that advice but my gut was telling me something was wrong. She was acting fine again but she still wouldn't use her arm and I just knew that it was broken.

Long story short, Miss Alice saw the pediatrician first thing the next morning and yep! A hairline fracture and a break in her left wrist. Both aligned perfectly and only needing a cast to be put on. So for the weekend she was at home with a splint of bright green, which she said is her favorite color. She was immediately back to her shenanigans. Climbing on top of couches and jumping, trying to tightrope walk across every piece of furniture and surf on every table. She got along quite well with the splint. It wasn't going to keep her from doing what 2 year olds do! She is a very fierce lady.

She even insisted on putting her own shoes on.

And going to the park and sliding on every slide.

Monday she was able to get a cast and she chose dinosaurs because she is gnarly like that. She sat like a total angel and didn't even blink while the cast was put on although she did give the stink eye to the doctor the whole time. She liked the end result though-

She is now showing off her dinosaurs to everyone.

So that is the long and scary tale of the broken wrist, but it has a happy dino clad ending. I do foresee a few more broken bones in our future. Two and a half and already 2 broken bones. She's hitting those milestones so early. *sniffle*

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Welcoming Fall

Today is the very first chilly day of the season. Still not cold enough to make us turn on the heat, but enough that the kids needed a sweater going out today. It's also a very blustery, rainy day. I've enjoyed having that noise all day, the pouring rain outside and occasional rumbles of thunder and wind blowing leaves all over the street. It's a perfect lazy day.

My basket of yarn and a mug of warm cocoa with cinnamon are all I need. I am a lover of all seasons (although summer will always have the number 1 place in my heart) and I really enjoy these first hints of autumn. Warm drinks in pretty mugs, cute sweaters, leggings and tights, crockpot soups and most of all crocheting for the cold months ahead. I have been in a hat making frenzy! I made a ton of hats for people and then realized that I needed one for myself and so-

My first hat just for me! I am in serious love. I've had some massive hat envy over Mary Margaret on Once Upon A Time! I spend the whole time I'm watching the show drooling over her wardrobe. Yummy stuff. Now I have my own chic crocheted hat to quell my hat lust. But not for long. That pink creation in the works in the first photo is going to be my next hat just for me!
In case anyone else is suffering from hat envy and wants to partake in their own crocheting hats adventure, here is the link to the 8 round hat I'm wearing-
So welcome Fall! Welcome beautiful hat season and colorful leaves and pumpkin everything! 
Onward to one of my favorite holidays- Halloween!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

My Saturday


A lot of lounging on the couch, watching Once Upon a Time (me, a fairytale buff, only just discovering this show!) and crocheting my very first blanket. I am loving this granny stripe pattern and the deep charcoal with a gold accent color.

Friday, October 4, 2013


Kairos time- God's time.

The moments where time seems to stop and you can feel your breath and the blood drumming in your veins and you think to yourself 'this moment is one that I need to remember forever'.

This blog is my way of recording. Life events, thoughts, crafting endeavors, household projects, my children and their doings, etc. I've thought about doing this for years and am only just now making the plunge so right up front I think my procrastination is obvious. I'm dipping my toes in now though.

A few random facts about me-

* I am the mother of 2- a nearly 6 year old sensitive soul named Oliver and a 2 year old ferocious lady named Alice-Mae. They are very opposite to each other but have been best friends from the moment they met.

* I am southern and I don't think I could ever live anywhere else. I'd be a popsicle up north.

* My very favorite craft is crocheting. It's kind of an obsession, really. I sew and make jewelry and collage and all sorts of stuff as well.

* I just celebrated 5 years of marriage with my beautiful partner, Peter. We are best friends.

* I love growing beautiful things in pretty pots.

* Walking is my favorite exercise on a chill, sunny day.

* I have a cat named Norman and a jack russel named Mattie and they are both my 4 legged babies.

* I am still a die hard Backstreet Boys Fan, even at the ripe old age of 26.

* My dream life would be staying at home with a house full of kids on a cute little piece of property and having a mini farm, sewing and crocheting clothing for my kids, taking care of chickens and dogs and babies and making jam and preserves.

I am hoping to use this space as a way to create and reach out and most of all to record life. It is a blog and a diary and a photo album. I hope that whoever is reading this is touched by something wonderful today. Blessed be, cupcakes.