Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Make It: Simple Ribbon Christmas Shirt

This is another one of those "Dear Santa, I need a girl" crafts!
 Seriously? How cute is this Ribbon Christmas Tree Shirt?
 and the best part is that it's EASY!!!
and could potentially be no-sew, so that makes it even better!!

Ready for the Tutorial? 
Here we go ...

Collect miscellaneous ribbon and cut to desired length!
 Then use a lighter to "fray-check" the edges! This step is super important!

 Now you need this... Heat N Bond Hem Tape.
 You can find it here or at Hobby Lobby, Michaels, etc.
 I bought the "REGULAR" strength because I planned on sewing over it.
If you want a no-sew version buy the "ULTRA".

 Place the hem tape under the ribbon and iron it on your shirt!
 For the thicker ribbon, I used two pieces of hem tape.

Then just stitch around the rectangle.
 Unless you used the ultra hem tape - in that case, don't sew! ;)
It will ruin your machine! Trust me.

Now top your tree -- vintage buttons, a star, whatever you want!
 and that's it! ;) 

you have a SUPER simple Christmas Tree Shirt for your little Christmas beauty!

Make a matching bow and you have the perfect outfit!
Merry Christmas!!

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Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Parent I thought I'd be.

This made me laugh.

Yup, I'm looking at you ... you wild child almost three year old. 

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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

It just doesn't matter.

It just doesn't matter.
Not in a negative way.
Not in a callous way.
But in an honest way.
In a "I've got bigger fish to fry" kind of way. 
It all started when I picked Wild Man up from school the other morning. As I was walking out the door, the teacher grabbed my hand and said "Nelson is just so caring! When the other kids cry, he always goes over to help them. He brings them water or tries to read them a book. It's very sweet.". 

My first reaction was - My child? My Wild Child that can't be in the same room as his brother without using him as a punching bag? Are you sure you're talking about MY KID?"

But then I smiled.
Caring. Empathetic.
I was so proud of him.

So then I got to thinking about my parenting style.
{if there really is even such a thing?}
I started thinking about WHY I make the daily decisions that I make...
about why I let them eat way too many fruit snacks -
and drink way too many juice boxes. 
I started thinking about why I haven't started potty training my almost 3 year old.  
and why I haven't taught him his alphabet.
I started thinking about why I haven't let my youngest cry it out.
and why I haven't taken his pacifier away.
and the answer is simple ... because those things don't matter.
Because in the grand scheme of life, those things are not important.

What is important?
What does matter?

Teaching them how to LOVE their Jesus.
and how to love LIKE Jesus.
Teaching them to be grateful.
and thankful.
{for they are so, so blessed!} 
Teaching them to give back.
Teaching them to think of others.
To be respectful.
and Chivalrous.
To open doors.
To say thank you.
To take turns 
 and just be good stewards.
Those are the things that matter.

You see, sometimes, I think we get carried away (myself included!!!) - we're trying so hard to be the perfect "Pinterest" mom. We're so busy trying to potty train them by two, have them reading by 3 and writing cursive at 4, that we forget the big picture.
We forget what is most important. 

We forget our main role as a parent is to LOVE them.
 To love our children like Jesus loves us.
(and by the way, that is really hard to do!!).
Because Jesus loves us unconditionally.
No matter how many times we mess up.
No matter how many times we say or do the wrong thing.
No matter how often we loose our tempers.
(which for me is way too often!!!)

So you see  -- those other things don't matter.  
Not to me. Not really anyways.
It doesn't matter if you cloth diapered or you didn't.
If doesn't matter if you breast fed or bottle fed.
It doesn't matter if your kid is 4 with a pacifier.
(even though your dentist may hate you, *wink*)

We're all just doing our best.
We all just want the best for our kids.
and what's best for my kids may be different than your kids....
but one thing is the same.

Jesus's love for us.
and the way Jesus wants us to love others.
(especially our children)
I really need to remember this as the Holiday season {quickly} approaches --
when everything gets crazy busy and my temper tends to get short.
When I have "SO much to do" - none of which is really important!
When I want everything to be perfect, go smoothly and just as I planned.
Those things just don't matter.

My only job right now is to help mold these two precious little hearts I've been given.
Even on the days when they AREN'T so precious!
Especially then.

So how about you?
Do you find yourself struggling with this?
or are you just perfect!? ;) haha.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Gallery Wall Reveal!

Are you new here? I'd love for you to come join me on Facebook!
You can find out first about giveaways, discounts for my shop, etc!

So remember about ten years ago when I posted pictures of my Gallery Wall Inspiration? (If you don't remember, you can read it again here!). Well, I've finally gotten around to finishing it!

About dang time right! The problem was my budget!
I decided to mix Canvas Pictures with Frames -
Those bad boys are pricey!
so every time there was a Canvas Groupon, I snatched it up.
The majority of my Canvas come from Canvas Zoo!
The quality is amazing and the shipping is fast! ;)

So here you go, for your viewing pleasure -- Our Galley Wall!

Right now it is currently centered around the couch ... but I love that I could add to either side - and eventually that whole back wall! ;) Yes, that's a BIG wall. Yes, I like pictures! Yes, my husband thinks I'm crazy, but I like the idea of eventually filling that whole back wall with random photos and canvas and things that mean a lot to our family.
Isn't that the purpose of a home? To make it your own?

I debated mixing canvas and frames ...
and I'm so glad I did ...
I love the dimension and texture that the canvas adds.
There's also a few randoms in there ... like this number 4.
Because there are 4 of us ... duh. My husband didn't get it! ;)

This is my favorite picture of the hubs and I ... I got to be a "naval aviator" for a day and Taxi the plane on the runway! It was so fun but I'm a terrible pilot! ;)
and here's a close - up!
We currently have 4 of those large 16x20 Canvas up ... I think one more in the top left corner would really balance it out - so I'm on the hunt for another Groupon!

Oh and this Coffee Table?
It's totally not childproof, but I don't care! I LOVE it!
(It's the Aiden Coffee Table from World Market and besides our couch, recliner and that bookshelf below it's the ONLY furniture in our house that we bought new! The rest was given to us or thrifted!)

This bookshelf is an important one ...
It holds the Diapers ...
 The books ....
 and the "date night" money jar!!!
Can't survive without those things!

So there you have it -- the gallery wall!
and a cute baby and giant dog as added bonus!

So what do you think?
Do you prefer a more uniform gallery wall?
Are you not a galley wall fan?
I'd love to hear your opinions.

Oh and guess what????
 On Thursday I'm giving away a canvas from Canvas Zoo!
So make sure you come back for a chance to win!!!!

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Monday, December 3, 2012

Make It: JOY Canvas

I LOVE simple crafts.
Crafts that take about 30 minutes are my bread and butter.
Crafts that use things I had lying around, that's the mac to my cheese.
When I pulled out all my Christmas stuff from the attic I found these JOY Letters.
I guess I made them last year?
They are just craft store wood letters that I mod podged with scrap book paper.
I also had this canvas in my HUGE pile of "extra" frames and Canvas.
It takes up SO much space in the garage, but I can't throw it away.
I MAY need them one day.
and see, today was that one day.

 I simply glued the JOY letters to the canvas.
 Actually I glued the J and Y to the O and then glued the J and Y to the canvas.
 That's it!
A simple JOY Canvas.
 It's currently sitting on my mantle to fill that big empty space ...
but it won't be staying there! ;)
I have big plans for that empty space!
Joy to the World , the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King.

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Paint It: Interior Doors go BLACK

 Our house was built in 1994 ...
and you could tell because orange wood-tone had practically thrown up everywhere.
This was a "before" ... sort of.
I painted the trim the week we moved in but the walls were still two different colors of awful, the chandelier was so low that my husband kept hitting his head and those doors were terrible. Cheapy, hollow core - orange toned doors. Gross. I begged to keep the chandelier but the hubs said enough! Pssh, what does he know?! ;)

Moral of the story? The orange doors had to go! But we did the math - and by the time we replace and install each door it costs us about $80/door. No way was the hallway worth $400. You see, we're military -- which means we move ALL.THE.TIME. We finally took the plunge and bought a house - but we're battling that fine line between making the house something we're proud of vs. not putting too much money into the house, since we know we have to sell it. Get where I'm going?

So I did what any good DIY'er would do.
a little PAINT! ;) 

I started with the walls ... a $5 gallon of grey Oops paint!
(Tip: they will 'tint' oops paint for you, I found light grey and had them add a bit to make it darker!)

Then onto the doors --
I started with white, but it didn't look good -
It showed all 18 years of dents and just looked "cheap".
Then I remembered all the black interior doors on Pinterest!
I'm not going to lie ... I was a little LOT nervous.  
Our house has a lot of "browns", blacks really aren't my style.
and my husband was gone and I was afraid he might kill me.
But I'm a true DIY'er and went for it anyways! 
and this is what it looked like after the first coat ....
I wanted to cry ...
 Big. Ugly. Tears. 

But I stuck with it -- (what option did I have?)
and three coats of black later, I had this --

I love it! ;)
I just used Valspar Samples for mine! It took 2 Sample Cans to do the 4.5 doors! 
(The "half door" is the playroom - you can read about that here)
Note: My sheen was "satin" - I would probably recommend using something more "glossy".

But isn't it lovely? (or at least a hundred times better than before?)

 Now, I totally get that black isn't everyone's cup of tea. Believe me, I get it! I wasn't even sure it was mine, haha! BUT! I am now sold!! For less than $80 (including the new light fixture) and a few hours of my time, I was able to completely change the look of my hallway! That beats $400 in my book any day!{and there is no doubt in my mind that white wouldn't have looked nearly this good!} So for me -- black was a great choice!

and just because we all love a good before/after ... here you go one more time! ;)
{and so does my husband, which is amazing!}

Price Breakdown:
Gallon of  Oops Paint - $5
5 new Stainless hardware knobs - $40 ($8/each * 5)
Light Fixture - Lowe's ($27 with Lowe's military Discount)
2 Sample Paints - $6
Total: $78

So are you looking to upgrade those ugly doors in your house?
Sample cans of black paint is a great option!

So there you have it -- another $100 or less "room" makeover!
What do you think??
You can see the bathroom makeover here.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Black Interior Doors!

I did it ... I took the plunge!
I painted our hallway doors black!
I'll show you more tomorrow but I'm LOVING it!!!
It's such a simple way to update those cheap, ugly brown hollow-core doors!

What's your thought on black doors?
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Cook It: EASY Crock Pot Chili

 Do you need a quick, delicious meal on a cool winter night?
Well, I have the perfect answer -- Crock Pot Chili.
This recipe is SOOO easy (seriously, just wait) but it is SO good!
My husband tells everyone I make "the best chili" - I don't tell him how easy it is, haha!
If you can brown meat and use a can opener, then you can make this!
and it's fast! ;)
What you need:
- Ground Beef (I used a pound or so)
- Chili Powder
- Bush's Chili Beans (large can)
- Diced tomatoes (for Chili)
- Tomato Sauce (seasoned for chili)
Brown your meat and add salt and pepper to taste ...
Combine the ingredients from the 3 cans + the ground beef in a crock pot.
Add chili powder to taste and let it simmer on low all day.
Or if you forget, just cook it on Medium for about 20-30 minutes!
Top it off with Sour Cream, Fritos and Cheese for a deliciously comforting winter time dinner.


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