Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Randomness and a little more

This week has been so busy already I want to cry.

Have you ever had a week like that?

I have 3 practices this week alone for our Church's Christmas Program on Sunday. Then the kids have their Christmas program at school on Thursday. Brent and I are splitting up on Friday to go to two different Christmas parties, and it just goes on and on.

In the midst of all this, I've noticed my sweeper has been sitting in the dining room since Saturday with every intention of being used, but hasn't yet.

We got groceries tonight after school because this was my only free night this week. (And I spent it getting groceries????)

I wrapped my Christmas present for my book club party on Friday, and made tomorrow's supper, tonight, because I have to be at the church tomorrow night by 6:00 and it's a 1/2 hour drive there.

We all (except Brent) laid out our clothes for school tomorrow, packed our lunches, signed assignment books, did laundry, and made supper (grilled cheese tonight...pathetic, I know, but necessary under the circumstances.)

I'm getting ready this weekend to make some clipboards for a lady I work with, because she ordered them for Christmas gifts, and I'm helping another teacher I work with to finish a Christmas present for her daughter. It looks like this now....

but will look much greater later....

Every time I remember to take a picture of my Christmas decorations, it's nighttime, and dark in my house, so this is all I could capture.

The kids helped me wrap presents for everyone but themselves this past Saturday, but my to-do list doesn't seem to be diminishing at all.

I did manage to squeak out this project tonight, though. One that's just kinda sat there for awhile.

It stemmed from the fact that I was tired of having a laundry basket sitting on top of my dryer all the time. It would get filled with several loads of laundry for the kids before I would eventually take it upstairs and put it away in their rooms.

I decided to downsize my basket, and instead, "re-found" these that hadn't been used for awhile.

They perfectly matched my aqua laundry room, but they were a little plain.

So, I jazzed them up a little, and made them for each kid to claim as their own. The hope is THEY will take up their own laundry and put it away.

Evan loves hedgehogs (too long of a story to share now...) so I found this among my scrapbooking supplies, and then made a tag with his name on it.

Grace is into a phase of loving woodland animals, so she got a little deer from my stash.

And that's about all for tonight. I would like to sit down and look at a magazine quick, but it's 10:45pm and I really should go to bed. Unfortunately, I wish tomorrow was already the weekend.

Hope your week is smoother than mine!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Christmas Gift Ideas

So, I was one of the crazies who shopped on Black Friday.

Now, wait, before you pass any judgements about me....I was NOT out at 3am, I didn't go till around 8am.

It was MUCH more low key at this time of day. I didn't see any fighting in the stores over items. I DID have to wait in line, but I'm sure it was a lot shorter than earlier that morning.

I DID finish my Christmas shopping on Black Friday. That I am happy about. However, I'd like to pass along some great sites on etsy.com that are adorable. Now, let me just say this about etsy.com. It's a site all about sellers who either sell vintage items or who make items to sell. You can search for anything, and all of it is great. I love to support other crafters making a living selling their creations.

I did do a lot of online shopping this year. More than any year previous to this. It's just so easy to do, and quick, and I only shopped the sites that were offering free shipping. I didn't have to set foot in 20 different stores, it was all conveniently shipped to my warm home.

Anyway, here are some VERY cute items that you might like.

This is one of my favorites, and you can find it here. It's made by LillyEllenDesigns.

And since I have a daughter who is very into Paris and the Eiffel tower lately, here are some very cute items.

You can find this very chic coin purse here....along with some other very cute things.
It's made by MFIPC.

Then there is this little ditty. I want one myself. You can purchase it, and others like it, here.
Moira made it and I think I need to make her my new best friend.

Lastly with the whole Paris theme and all are these cute little resin Eiffel towers. They could be used for earrings or even a necklace. Did I mention Grace is also into designing her own jewelry lately? She is. You can buy these very cute and stylish towers here.

Then there is this very talented lady. I LOVE this print, and would like it hanging in my house, but all the other ones she makes are equally great. You can find this one and others here.

Then, because I am a little obsessed with journals and to-do lists, I found these. (seriously, when it's time to buy the kids school supplies, I buy myself some as well. There's no problem a good, cute notebook can't solve!) I AM IN LOVE. Now, I could make these myself, I have oilcloth in my possession, but it's a matter of finding the time. This lady makes many things out of oilcloth. Check these out here.

Now, wasn't that fun?

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Thanks

Now that the festivities are all completed, our tummies are full, and our hearts even fuller from spending time with family, I'll fill you in on some things I'm most thankful for. (In list form of course!)

1. God. Someone who loves me no matter what...and he always listens.

2. Family (that's a given!) I have the greatest, funniest family who live all around us, (really, only a couple houses away.)

3. My kids.

They may be ornery, they may be sweet, but they are always ours.

4. My husband....even though he picks on me daily, and LOVES to tackle me to "get out my orneriness," he loves me. He takes care of us, and he's faithful.

5. Our health. (Sniffles here and there can easily be handled.)

6. Our jobs. Brent and I may not have the highest paying jobs around, but we have jobs, and we've learned how to manage our money well, so we've been ok in this terrible economy.

7. My ability to create. Heaven knows after a day at school with kids climbing all over me, I need a release. I love to create anything.

8. Friends. Those of you who I can talk to or call anytime. Those of you who know me and STILL like me.

9. My sense of humor. Whoever works with little kids each and everyday...NEEDS one of these. Someone usually says something once a day that makes me laugh out loud!

10. My blog friends/followers. Your comments Make me feel special and I love reading them...they brighten my day!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Truth Thursday...a little early

In lieu of Thanksgiving landing on a Thursday (HOW DARE IT!), I'm doing Truth Thursday a little early, and in number list form again.
Here goes...
1. No. of books I'm currently reading....The Clay Bible. Gave it to my dad for his birthday or Father's Day, and he's letting me read it.
2. Number of dogs we have. Both were rescued (AND FREE...Brent is proud of that!) One is good, one is still a puppy. Nuf said!

3. Age Grace was when she split her chin open and had to have stitches. To say it was hard as a mom to not freak out in front of her, and let her know I wasn't freaking out is an understatement.
4. No. of times a day I wish I didn't have recess duty for 1st and 2nd grade lunch recess. Things I've seen at recess so far this year....tackle fighting (usually on a daily basis), pants pulled down and peeing in a field, no coats on a freezing day, sand in places we don't want to mention, and peeing in a field. Need I say more???
5. Total number of Christmas trees that will be going up in my house on Friday.
6. Number of kids Brent thinks we should have. We have 2, a boy and a girl, that's perfect! No need for more.
7. Total number of us in a monthly book club. We read a book each month and then meet for supper/coffee and talk about it. I look forward to it each month.
8. Approximate number of Christmas gifts yet to buy.
9. Number of projects I would like to finish soon (Kid's laundry baskets, pillows for the couch, clipboards for a teacher to use as Christmas gifts, reorganizing the pantry, paper wreath, cover clothespins for hanging Christmas cards along the steps, finish Christmas Card list, cafe curtains in the kitchen, and a growth chart for the kids.

Mine like this will be Christmas colored of course.This idea will be slightly modified.

Link to this pantry here. You will not BELIEVE this woman's creativeness!

10. Number of purses currently residing in my closet. You NEVER know what kind of purse mood you might be in. REALLY.

Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Enjoy your families!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Is it Thanksmas?

Is it Thanksmas? Thanksgiving? Christmas? I can't tell anymore. Walk down any aisle in any store after Halloween and there are Christmas decorations. I don't know why it blows me away every year, but it does.
You see, I'm a decorating stickler. I put up my fall decorations, not because I want to in August, but in September when the air starts getting chiller. Pumpkins and all that goes outside on the porch right around the end of Sept/beginning of Oct. I don't want rotten pumpkins by Thanksgiving now do I? And Christmas decorations DO NOT get put up before Thanksgiving weekend.
Really. I AM one of those people making fun of those people with Christmas lights outside their house, or Christmas trees I can see from the window before Thanksgiving, and AFTER February. Sorry, but I am. I can hear myself saying when I pass these places, "Really, are those people crazy?"
I am eating my words.
I have children who bother me about decorating for the seasons WAY BEFORE it's the actual
season. Grace has literally been driving me crazy to put up our Christmas decorations for weeks now.
Believe me, I WANT to. I do. I love everything about all the seasons and the Holidays. I'm looking forward to going to my grandma's this Thursday, because I love getting together with my dad's side. They make me laugh so hard my face hurts!
But, I'm also looking forward to coming home from Thanksgiving and decorating for Christmas. Usually the day after, the kids and I are putting up the tree and all that goes along with that. We're not ones to hit the town for Black Friday. Really. Brent has to work, so shopping with kids on that crazy day is NOT appealing.
So, where was I going with this...oh, yes...I'm a stickler who has fallen off the wagon.
Grace wore me down.
This is what is sitting on my counter between the kitchen and the living room.

AND this is what is currently, as of 10 minutes ago, in my living room.

My Christmas village is up. I can't believe it! It is TECHNICALLY getting close to winter, and this is really a WINTER village, right? Sure it is. It's supposed to be 65 degrees tomorrow. In Indiana. WHAT am I thinking?
I broke down. I lost it. I gave in to the persistence of Grace.
I walked down to the basement and looked at this place good and hard.

It's all the tubs filled with Christmas decorations. Only one or two of these holds tax documents. The others hold Christmas decorations.
Yes, I have a problem.
I got the two tubs marked Christmas Village, and took them upstairs. It took only a minute for this to happen.

Unpacking pandemonium. Houses came flying out of the box as well as little people, barns, an ice skating rink, and many other things.
(This is not really helping at all.)
This village has come to be from purchases at Goodwill, garage sales, and even a store or two AFTER Christmas. Some things have broken, and some have been sold, and this is what is left.
This was the BEFORE.

Now we have bumpy roads in town...

A wedding party...and a policeman who hastily got his arm repaired with tape tonight...

An ice skating rink...

Complete with hidden magnets that make these people go around in figure 8's, etc. It really is quite cool.

A train station that has a Thomas train track and trains leftover from Evan's obsessive train days.

A "glass" pond and bridge with a very disapproving man looking over the side.

And lastly, my favorite part of the whole village. The farmhouse and barn outside of town.

I bought it because the house reminded me of our own yellow one.

Yes, I realize that the barn is not proportionate to the house...they were bought separately. But I LOVE the house!

It looks so homey, and the front porch is like ours.

The whole reason why I finally gave in was because of this...

My kids are absolutely in LOVE with this village, and always have been. They spend hours rearranging the people, making up voices for them, and acting out little scenes. Many things have gotten broken over the years, but their joy far outweighs that I suppose.

At least Grace has finally been appeased. At least until Friday!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

It NEVER ends

If it weren't for all the running around I've had to do this week, I think my body might just fall apart piece by piece. It's holding together purely by friction. I think.

I've had a meeting every night, and I'm trying to finalize my Christmas cards, which I won 50 free ones from Shutterfly, (read my earlier post on how you can too) I'm getting ready for the Christmas program at church (which I grudgingly agreed to be a part of), Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and I've got all these creative ideas flying around in my head. Not to mention tomorrow is THURSDAY, which my wonderful husband reminded me is TRUTH THURSDAY.

What's a girl to do?

I've been wanting to post just some quick projects I completed over the weekend, but which I haven't had time to talk about. (Those of you who find time to post every day, please tell me your secret!)

First off, I saw some jars with numbers in an old Pottery Barn catalog. You know I'm a sucker for numbers in decorating, so.... here are the plain BEFORE jars.

Pretty unexciting, huh?

I used my trusty cricut machine and some black vinyl, and made these simple numbers to spruce up my jars.

Course I couldn't just stop there! I had to add some smaller ones to the IKEA pots I got this summer for $.79 ea.

THEN....I've been wanting to spruce up Grace's bed. It's kinda plain, and for $1.99/4 I found these perfectly plum dinner napkins at Target. I wanted to make her some ruffle pillows for her all white bed.

I hauled out my 70 year old sewing machine. I really like it save for the fact it's old. I have to manually backstitch everything, and it often breaks thread while I'm sewing, so I have to go back and sew over that. UGH!!! I really need a new sewing machine, but just haven't broken down and bought one.

BUT....moving on....I had in my head what I wanted these pillows to look like.


I'm happy with the outcome, and Grace likes them very much.

Now the kids want to start decorating for Christmas. Can't I just have a day to sleep in?