Archive | January, 2010

fancy shoes

I’d like to think that I am a pretty creative person. And, I guess, I am. However, most of my ideas come from someone else.

Like these shoes:

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I love the burlap flower on the simple black shoes. I believe these little flowers are sold on etsy and I could have purchased a pair, but instead thought I could just make some myself.

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I had some grey felt laying around and thought they’d be a cute flower for the winter. I put in a little tulle for fluff & some mini glass beads in the center.

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They are attached to an alligator hair barrette covered in ribbon. A clip-on earring back would be the preferred method of attaching to a shoe, however, I do not regularly purchase clip-on earring backs and when I want to do a project, I just try to make do with what I have so that my boys do not have to accompany me to another craft store.

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I also made this pair with dark grey felt.

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Now, why, you might ask, am I adorning high heels when I am three weeks away from delivering a baby and should not actually be wearing them?

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Because tomorrow is my baby shower and of course I want my feet to look fancy.

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the nursery in its current state

So the furniture has been set up, the closets reorganized and No. 3 is now sleeping in the guest room so that I can take over his room and turn it into our new nursery. 

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Originally, I wanted to keep this room as No. 3s room. I spent A LOT of time on those stripes and it breaks my heart to paint over them.  However, taupe stripes are not in the plan for the baby’s room. 

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There is much to do in here:

- paint the walls {prime them first, I’m afraid}.

- buy & install a chandelier

- decide on bedding & purchase/make it {or, rather, have my mom make it}

- wallpaper the large window wall

- paint the bed

- make roman shades for the three little windows

 

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- paint the baby’s scripture verse above the crib

- create a collage of frames on the wall above the dresser

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- accessorize, accessorize, accessorize.

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Lots of work to do, but I’m looking forward to it.

Unfortunately, I have a husband who cares about my well-being and the well-being of our baby, and he refuses to let me paint the walls. I am at his mercy for this step so we’ll see when I can convince him to do it.  Actually, I am thankful for his protective side because I can often overwork my poor little body and painting this room would surely not be the best for me.

I’ll keep posting photos as the room progresses.

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wholesome goodness

{m y n i g h t}
carrot cake +
milk
+
the bachelor

Oh, so wholesome.
Seriously, i do love carrot cake. And there is just something about The Bachelor that draws me in. So I’m a little bit in Heaven {it also helps that I am cozy on the couch in my pj’s with the house mostly clean and the children sound asleep}.

I hope your night is as delightful {and perhaps a bit more wholesome}.

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a mobile that isn’t a mobile

I saw this image the other day in a Potterybarn Kids catalog and was inspired to create my own little flower mobile for the baby’s room.

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So, off I went to the local craft store and bought many many white & cream flowers.

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and a Styrofoam wreath form.

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I wrapped grey grosgrain around it to fully cover,

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securing the ends with these little silver pins. {I have no idea where we got these pins, but they proved very helpful for this project.}

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I then stripped the flowers from their stems and attached them to the wreath. I first started by using fabric glue, but quickly realized that it was much easier to pin them in.

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Look closely {beyond my beautifully painted fingernails} and you can see the little silver pin.

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I just kept adding more and more flowers until I was happy with how it looked.

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And here it is, hanging in my kitchen.

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And oh what a view the baby will have while laying in her crib .

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I’m looking forward to actually putting it in the room, but believe me, I’m quite a few steps back from accessorizing with a non-mobile mobile.

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he knows her name

In college, we went to church at Christian Assembly, the home of worship singer & songwriter Tommy Walker. So many of his songs have gained popularity and because our university was nearby, many were sung at our weekly chapel services. Needless to say, many of Tommy Walker’s songs have deep meaning to me and stir up emotions very quickly {well, truly, many things stir up emotions in this girl, but you get the idea}.

My best friend just sent me a link to this one : just as a walk down memory lane. I did always love this song for so many reasons. There was a period in college that was very hard for me and this song brought much comfort. To know that I had a heavenly father who adored me was exactly what I needed to hear at that time {still do, in fact!}. Plus, a really cute boy at school sang this one on our university’s first worship cd and so I always had a sort of affection for it. Oh, Jay Murphy.

A N Y W A Y :

I just listened to it and realized that not having a name for my daughter is hard for me. I think I just want to know who she is. And yet, I can’t for the life of me figure out what her name is. Now, bear with the video, because it is pretty cheesy and it was a song that was recorded in 1998 {12 years ago! Oh my!}, so it is a little dated. But it is beautiful. And it really does speak to me every time I hear it. This time around, it is the fact that

He knows her name

I just get to carry her. She is really His and He knows everything about her before she is even seen by me. What a great reminder and a reassurance to me that although we don’t have a face or a name or little feet to know yet, she has been known since time began.

May you be blessed today by this oldie but goodie.

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ikea

I have a love-hate relationship with IKEA.

Sometimes I get so excited to go, only to realize that I really am not an IKEA kind of girl. Most of it is a little too modern and strange and colorful for my liking.  Sometimes it is CRAZY busy and I just want to leave, only to realize that I have to walk 4 1/2 miles to get to the exit.

And then sometimes, it is a hit. Like today.

So here is what I found:

These basic white cotton curtains. Love that they are super long. These hang in many of our many windows, and I’ve also bought them just for the fabric {for pillow backs, bed skirts, fabric flowers}.  And, apparently they lowered the price from last year {$24.99 to $14.99}.

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These linen curtains. I do have two pairs of these in my house, but I’ll be using this pair just for the material. It is a pretty rugged natural linen, and I adore the grayish shade of them.  They are a bit more spendy at $49.99, but for about 8 yards of fabric, I figure I’m getting a great deal.

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These cups. We use them for the kids.  We’ve made an effort to rid our lives of any unnecessary plastics, so we tossed out the kid’s plastic cups and have them use these. They do just fine with glass. Plus, if they break, the only cost $1.99 for six.

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I wasn’t looking for pillows, but a down insert for $6.99? You can’t beat it!  And I do love throw pillows :

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And some plain white napkins. How boring, but essential.

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I noticed a theme of very white items. Apparently I shop the way I decorate.

I also stopped by the craft store to get these:

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more to come tomorrow on what I did with them.

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the carousel

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The Lord speaks to His children.  Sometimes its just a feeling, sometimes a pretty clear word. Sometimes it comes in dreams or through someone’s words or a song. And sometimes it comes through a picture.

A few months ago while praying for a close friend, I got a picture of a carousel. It was going around and around with that tinkling music and colorful swirl of lights.  People were riding, laughing, smiling. And my friend was standing off to the side, taking it all in.

Now sometimes a picture is hard to interpret. Was the Lord really telling me something? Did I just have a picture of a carousel in my mind because I was recently at the zoo where there is a carousel?  Perhaps. But as I was reminded today, He uses everyday things to teach us something bigger.

As I was remembering this picture and reflecting on the meaning, I feel like it is something we all struggle with and really need to consider.

I wonder how often we are observers rather than participators?

We see the adventure, but are held back from joining in.

It may be fear {what if its going to fast for me? what if i don’t get the horse I want? what if :}

It may be intimidation {I don’t know if I have it in me}

It may be the unknown {I’ve never done that before}

Whatever it is, it is holding us back from what the Lord has for each one of us. He wants us to be free, to have joy, to be part of a great adventure, to have meaning and a purpose.

I’m challenged to figure out what my ‘carousel’ is and what is holding me back from jumping on.  I don’t want to merely watch, but I want to be a part of the ride.

I encourage you to do the same {and share with me any insight you might have!}.

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the nursery {part two}

I’m really excited about this post.

If you’ve looked around at my blog {or if you know me}, you’ve undoubtedly noticed that I am a lover of neutral, muted non-colors.

You would also know that I have three boys.

And am expecting a baby girl in just a few weeks.

And you may have gathered that I’ve been O B S E S S E D with her room. It’s all I can think about. Well, I guess not all, but it is what I choose to think about when I have a few minutes to think.

I’ve been to a bunch of fabric stores searching for inspiration {I found nothing}. I’ve looked at a million blogs with nursery ideas. I pulled out my magazine tear-outs.

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I’ve waffled the past few days with going with my original thought of grey, white & a touch of blue or if I should let her be a girl and go with pink.

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So, I’ve been gathering stuff that I love from around the house {and things for the baby} and finally sat down today to compose a little inspiration montage.

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And I think I’m sold.

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Some gold. Some silver. Lots of white. Linen. A little hint of blue.

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And a few sparkly things.

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ooohhh : yes, I love it.

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kitchen reorganized

After Christmas, I {we} had an urge to freshen things up. I’m sure part of it for me is that little thing called ‘nesting’, but it really is not that uncommon for us to move things around. Our friends joke that when they come to our house things are always different. There is much truth to that.

I have a good list of tasks around the house and one big one was taking everything off the kitchen shelves, dusting, and rearranging.

Here are a few befores:

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And after:

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It feels fresh and clean and a little fluffier for valentines day.

Lots more moving and rearranging to take place in the next few weeks : updates to come.

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artwork

I’m still at a standstill with the baby’s room. For some reason, I just can’t decide what ‘look’ to go with. Tomorrow I’m hoping to pull together some inspiration boards and make a decision.

Anyway, as I’ve been searching for things I like, some little illustrations have caught my eye.

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I love this whole series by this fabulous artist. Her calendar series is so darling.

And I adore this one of the shoes. If I could commit to using more color in the baby’s room, I might order this print.

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I love the colors that she uses and the girly-ness of them. Click here to see more.

Etsy is such a great place to find handmade items.

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time to think

The nature of my business is that most of it takes place in November and December. Which means for the past two months, I’ve been busy. Really busy.

So now, to not have proofs to create and projects to complete and emails to return, I have {what feels like} a lot of free time.

Most of which, I’ve been spending thinking about our baby. And her room. And her name. And her clothes.

And feeling a little like this:

{amazing photo, huh?}

This little lady is getting big {or maybe it is just this mommy} and I’m pretty ready to be finished with this pregnancy thing. Six weeks to go …

Anyway, this time has given me a chance to come up with some new goals, new inspiration and lots of new project ideas. Here’s my list:

1. Wake before the boys. Ideally, I’d love to get up to a quiet house, pour a cup of orange juice {my version of coffee} and spend some time in God’s Word. Ideally. What usually happens is the boys come into my room and tap repetitively on my arm until I wake up and let them know they are free to go play legos. Then I fall back to sleep. Until they come in asking for breakfast. I really, really, want their mornings to be more enjoyable and I would love to start my day off the right way. IT IS JUST SO HARD TO GET OUT OF BED! I’m working on it … the last two days, I was up first. Only by a few minutes, but first, nevertheless.

2. Make more effort to spend quality time with the boys. I was just talking with my friend about this … I do a lot of side by side activities {i.e. boys playing legos, me working on invitations. We’re in the same room and interacting, but doing separate activities}. I’d like to work in more time doing the same activity. It probably won’t be playing legos because I am very bad at creating chariots and catamarans and griffins out of little rectangular pieces, but I do love to read to them and do art projects. So I’d like to be more intentional about it.

3. Turn on worship music when we’re just hanging out around home.

4. Remember birthdays and send cards. This one is more my husband’s desire, but I wholeheartedly agree and it will probably fall into my lap to complete {being that I am a card designer}.

5. Stop using the microwave. We’ve nearly accomplished this one {except for the bagel I defrosted today}. We’ve both heard some scary research about the dangers of microwaves and decided that we really don’t need to use it. I encourage you to try it out … you may have to plan a little ahead and wash a few extra dishes and wait longer for food to heat up, but so far for us, it has totally been worth it.

6. Memorize scripture. Both me & the boys.

As for projects:

1. Do the nursery. I’ll post some new photos and ideas soon. I’m sort of stumped and trying to get past my fear of color for this one. I’ll most likely not have the room done by the time the baby arrives, as it is chilly here and ventilating while painting is a challenge. And painting without ventilating is not a great idea. Particularly if you are pregnant.

2. Figure out what to put on the dining room table. If you aren’t entertaining, do you set it? Leave it empty? I’m looking into this one …

3. Create a monthly calendar {to post those aforementioned birthdays}.

4. Turn this great gaudy gold frame into a chalkboard for the kitchen. Then write a weekly scripture to memorize.

5. Reupholster a chair that has been sitting in our entry covered by a folded piece of fabric for three years. It really couldn’t be that hard.

6. Wallpaper the entry. I really want this one, but would settle for something else if I could find one I like as much.

7. Organize, organize, organize.

That’s enough for now. I really should be getting to bed so that I can wake before my munchkins …

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ruffle scarf

While Christmas shopping at Anthropologie, I saw this scarf:

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{sorry, bad photo}

We decided that rather than spend the $98 on one, I could try to recreate it.

And so I made one, then another, then another {five in all} which made wonderful gifts.  I can’t promise they’ll stand up to hard use or that they could be machine washed, but they are fun and flirty and a great alternative to a regular scarf.

So, I started with this scarf from Nordstrom B.P. for $18.

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1. Stitch using the longest stitch on your machine along the conveniently placed creases. Or just decide how many ruffles you’d like and stitch all the way down.  Because my scarf was quite wide, I did five lines. Don’t backstitch the ends – you’ll want them free to pull the threads to gather.

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It will look like this.

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2. Now pull a thread along each line to gather the material.  Pull the scarf to the desired ruffleness {not a word, I know}.

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It will look like this.

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3. Using the smallest stitch on your machine, stitch back and forth over the gather at each end of the scarf and at a  few points along the line. This will hold the gather into place. Warning: this is not the easiest task and because the material is so thin, it may get caught. Just keep going and know that it does not need to be perfect.

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That’s it.  Here I am in all my pregnant glory wearing the beauty. Antropologie showed it just draped like this, but my sister-in-law wore hers wrapped nicely around her neck and that was pretty too.

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If you make one, send me a photo : I’d love to see how it turns out.

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thinking pink

I’m not a color girl. When I tear out images from magazines, they are generally very neutral, containing a lot of black, white & taupe. My house is pretty colorless as is my closet. I’m not sure if it is a commitment thing or just what my eye is drawn to, but i still prefer the calming, wonderful colorless colors.

But every once in a while, I find I crave a little bit of color. Last spring, it was yellow. I made some pillows, found books & accessories that I had laying around to pull in some yellow and I was very satisfied.

Right now, I want Pink.

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Perhaps it has something to do with Valentine’s Day approaching,

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or perhaps because a sweet baby girl will be entering our lives in the next few weeks,

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but I feel the need to add some pink into my life.

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I’ll let you know how it goes over with my house full of boys.

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