Monday, October 31, 2011

80's Flashback...and a Christmas craft...say what?

I know I've been absent for several days.  We've been on Fall Break, and that's my excuse.  Too much time being lazy/finishing projects/crafts/dentist appointments.

And today is Halloween of all things.  The kids didn't go trick or treating last year.  They said they were too old, and I was secretly relieved.  It's too much of a hassle thinking of how I'm gonna make their costumes every year.  Evan would always come up with a random/hard character, and I would have to deliver.

Then Grace hit me upside the head this afternoon when her friends texted her to go trick or treating with them and their mom.

"What in the world will you wear?"  I asked.  "We're going as the 80's" she exclaimed.  That I can work with, and they just had that as a spirit day this past week at school for Red Ribbon Week.

However, when she came out of her room looking like this...
I had to stifle a laugh.  First of all, the 80's is my era.  I mean, I started Kindergarten in 1979 and graduated in 1992.  The 80's was my generation.  However, I NEVER went outside the house looking like this.  Big hair, sure.  Tons of neon jelly bracelets, OK.  Side pony tails, neon clothes, double socks, pegged pants, ABSOLUTELY.  But a cut up shirt and short shorts, NO.

But these girls are taking it to the extreme, I know, to get a laugh.

What they must think of this past generation to go so over the top.
For a girl so in love with fashion right now, this is rather funny to me.  But I know they'll have a good time.  It's her BFF's she's going with.  It's all about solidarity.

So, while Grace was in her room designing this outfit, I was at my craft table, whipping up a craft that I started with no good end in mind.

I had no idea what it would turn out like.  I had an idea in my head, but sometimes the end result is different.

Our church bazaar is in a couple weeks, and our Sunday School class needed to come up with a craft for the donated craft table.  This is why I was trying this out.
My supplies looked like this.
Clear glass ornaments from Wal-Mart.  Probably cheaper at the dollar store, but I wasn't on that side of town today.

An old book.  One from home, used strictly for crafts.
A "winter/christmasy" stamp on recycled paper from an embellishment.  This ended up being used for something other than the above use because the paper was a little slippery and the stamp kept wiping off.
Martha Stewart glitter in brownstone...and
candy apple.  I already had these from the set I bought last year with my Michaels 40% off coupon.  Hardly ever use them, so I had plenty.

So, first I cut the book pages into strips,
and stuffed them inside the clear glass ornament.
I kept stuffing till it was rather full.
Then I took the tops of the ornaments, covered them with mod podge, mixed the two glitters together and rolled the ornament top in it.
I took some garden twine I had, and attached it to the ornament top and the small tag I made.
Not too hard of a project, and a little vintage looking.

I was pleased with the result, and now don't want to donate it to the donated table at all!  I will, though, and then I'll probably make some more for my own tree.

Well, I gotta run.  Time to take Grace for a night out on the town.  Yipee.

Friday, October 28, 2011

For the love of a flower

Have you noticed how flowers are all the rage now?

Maybe they always have been, and I've just been outa the loop.

But they seem to be everywhere you look.

They are in home decor
and blankets.
They are even on front doors, (wreaths are mine)
They are on bags
and jewelry.
They even appear on swoony craft projects.
I've made many myself.  Including bobby pins (tutorial here) and flowers for wreaths and purses.

It's addicting.  You can use all sorts of media like material scraps, denim, felt, etc.

It's the new fad.  I didn't think at my age I would be back into the "in fads" but I guess this is a little different.

Go ahead, search all over Google, Etsy, Pinterest, and any blogs you may like.  Everyone is all about FLOWERS.

You know you want to be in the "in crowd" again.  Go for it!

Look for a GIVEAWAY in the near future.  It's coming.  I'm working on it now!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I'm in LOVE

There are many things that get me excited...creative-wise at least.

I've been wooed by scrapbook paper, embellishments, wrapping paper, and ribbon.

I've oohed and ahhed in a store aisle, out loud mind you, much to my daughter's embarrassment.

But there is just one brand in the scrapbooking world I keep going back to. 

They are VINTAGE. They are SASSY, they are just plain WONDERFUL.  (And no, I'm not getting paid to endorse them....although I would take their product freely!)

October Afternoon.

If you haven't encountered them, you must.  You can go here to see the collections.

Take for instance this glorious 12x12 page...
from their holiday collection, which can be bought here or here, by searching under October Afternoon.  I can totally envision a Christmas layout with this.

And these embellishments to go with it of course...

You might even check out their new farmhouse line, which I plan to do in greater length.
I mean, there are stickers that show a YELLOW farmhouse.  I HAVE A YELLOW FARMHOUSE!  (it was meant to be.)

You might even think about using one of their other lines to make this. 


They even sell fabric. 

I think I might die.  Right here.  Right now.

Ideas are swirling around in my head...if only I had the time!

So, check them out.  It's worth your time.  It's definitely worth your money.

Just don't have a heart attack in the aisle!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Wanna get creepy?

It's been awhile since I suggested a book.

It's not that I haven't been reading...I have...tons, but there have been none I felt I wanted to suggest, until this one.

It actually came on suggestion from Jori at Hi there Cupcake!

Miss Peregrine's home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs.

Sometimes I'm leery about other's book suggestions, but she was right on the money.

This book has both a creepy/compelling/can't take my eyes off the text/pictures thing goin' on.

I literally read it on a Sunday afternoon.

I couldn't get enough.  It's all based on the actual, real pictures collectors have found at flea markets, junk yards, garage sales, etc.

It's about a boy, Jacob, and his grandpa Abe who have a very "close" relationship.  When Jacob was growing up, Abe would tell him of the island where he was sent as a boy during the war, and the kids he lived with.  He had pictures to show Jacob, which left him with nightmares.
When Abe dies, he leaves Jacob with a cryptic message, and Jacob feels as if he should find out what it means, and go visit the Island his Grandpa lived on as a child.

I loved it, and have picked it for my book club's next read.

Now, it's not a Stephen King kind of creepy, it's just  creepy in I don't know if these pictures could be real kinda thing.

Check it out, just don't read it in the dark!

Friday, October 21, 2011


I'm not quite sure how it all started, but about 4 or 5 years ago it did.

Brent and I had a Sunday School fall party at our house.

Word got around that Brent had a tractor, and there would be a hayride.  And for those of you who know my husband...well, him and tractors, they go hand in hand.  There is nothing that gives him quite as much excitement as a tractor.

The hayride the first year, was, well, a LITTLE LONG.  It was absolutely ridiculous, but everyone rolled with it, and Brent's smile covered his whole face from ear to ear.

So, each year we've hosted this little party, it's gotten more and more over the top.  Last year we had a "strongman" competition, farmer style.  There was tractor tire flipping, and pulling of the hay wagons with all the kids inside.

This year, there will be a little chicken and sheep catching/chasing.

I took the day off today to clean my house top to bottom.

This is a big deal.  We're taking about 50-60 people show up each year.

We provide soup and sandwiches, and everyone else brings food to share.  You know the Mennonites, any reason to have a carry-in...

After the hayride, there is a fire and smores and hot chocolate.

It's a blast.

It really is.  The kids play volleyball/football/basketball, and the adults actually get to carry on a conversation.

God is providing us with weather in the upper 50's tomorrow, with lots of sun.

It should be good.

Even Rudy is ready.  He doesn't know what to do with himself with all the attention he gets from all the kids.  He takes a nap the whole next day!

So while the rest of you are enjoying your Saturday, we'll be livin' it up down on the farm.

I'm already thinkin' about the nap I'll have to take Sunday afternoon!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I need to change up the layout and color of my stairway picture frames.

I saw in a recent magazine a brialliant solution, but when I search for the picture online, I can't find it.

Summary:  mostly uniform colored frames, with some whimsical spray-painted colored frames thrown in.

I love these colors...

And have started to spray paint some and hang them. 

I even had this conversation with Grace the other day...."Mom, you gave Evan's picture the aqua-colored frame!  I AM the one who loves aqua!" 

Really?  Is is gonna come to this?

I'm picking up some mustard colored paint tonight for some other frames.

I'm thinking of some of these layouts...
And I'm diggin' the wrap around the corner look of these pictures.

I'll be tackling this project before our fall Sunday School party at our house this Saturday.

I want my stairway looking it's best!

I love the look of family pictures, showcasing my children throughout the years.

Does anyone have any ideas/links to share with me about layout for the stairway? 

Help a girl out!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Make the time

Make the time.

I certainly need to follow my own advice here.

I mean really.

At the top of my steps on a landing that could be a bedroom if walls were put up, is my craft room.

It's everything I want it to be, except it doesn't get used as much as I would like.

Everything is in order, everything is colorful, everything "spurns" creativity....but there just isn't enough time each day to get it used.

I'm sad about that.  Because more than anything, I would love to have time each day to use it.

Along with my role as mom, employee, PTO member, etc., I'm a scrapbooker.  I have been for years, but as life gets busier and busier, time to sit down and create gets harder and harder.

This is the scrapbook I use.  It's made by Making Memories and it's a 3 ring binder.  I LOVE it because you can get a lot of pages in it.  Problem is, I bought it at Target a couple years ago, and they don't sell it anymore.  Just my luck!

Yesterday, however, I sat down for a couple hours, and whipped out some pages.

When I say whipped, I mean whipped out as in quickly.  I'm not sure why I'm sharing some of these, they are not up to my usual standards, but I'm showing you as proof that I sat down and did something.

I'm a year behind with pictures, and that's another thing that makes me sad.  I don't mean I haven't taken pictures in a year, no, I take pictures almost everyday, but I'm a year behind in putting them in books.

So, without further ado, here is what I worked on.  (disclaimer...for some reason, the pics turned out kinda fuzzy.  Don't know if it was the lighting or the fact I didn't take the pages out of the plastic sleeves, or what...sorry.)

My kids had so much fun with their Grandparents the day they took them sledding!

Easter last year.  This might be the last time they every "search" for eggs.  They are getting so grown up.

Our life during the summer revolves around the baseball diamond.  This was a year ago, and already they are so much bigger, and much better players!
Evan's Sonic birthday party was a blast last year.
I try to only highlight the "major events" throughout the year, or else we'd have dozens and dozens of scrapbooks.  I keep a school book for each kid that is only about them, and then I have one family book that has everything else.

Since fall break, Thanksgiving, and Christmas break are around the corner, I know I'll get caught up, I usually do.

Moral of the story....TAKE time to do what you love.

I certainly need to heed my own advice.

Happy Monday!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

From a picture to a reality

If any of you are like me, once in awhile you see a picture of something somewhere that just resonates with you at a precise moment in time.
I have to admit.  I subscribe to Pottery Barn magazine, not because I can afford the things in it, but because it gives me a vast supply of IDEAS.
I can usually see something in a magazine, or on, and make my own version of it, tweaking it just a little.
So, the other day, I did just that.
I saw these pics on Pinterest....

First THIS:
(source:  sewmanyways)
and then THIS:
(source Pottery Barn)

It hit me, that I had some baskets similar to these, and I had these great metal tags that I got at FlowerPatchFarmgirl's garage sale.
I used my croc-a-dile to punch holes on each end of the tin tag,
until they resembled this:
I had chipboard and felt numbers to add,
along with some red ticking material to attach them to the baskets.
They ended up looking like this:

Some are used here for Nintendo DS's and winter gear.

Another is on the landing to gather things that need to go upstairs.
Then, while I was all up in the crafty mode, I saw this on Pinterest too.
(source:  lehiwrights)

I had all the supplies for that too, so I got to work.
I had gotten this pie plate at Goodwill ages ago, and loved the saying in it.
I had some more candlesticks, which I spray painted Pistachio green,
and then added a kid-sized vintage apron I've had since the kids used to use it for dress up.

All in all, it was a very productive night.  I crossed two things off my craft to-do list.
What do you think?

Tonight I'm takin' a break, and I'm cozying up with my newest magazine that arrived today...
I can't wait!
Till later!