Archive | April, 2011

bloom

Today I have three things to talk about. Each has a little something to do with flowers.

Thing One:

Meet the Butterworth family

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{how cute are they?!}

I went to college with both Jesse & Marisa {Azusa Pacific University, in case you’re curious} and have just recently been back in touch with them. Jesse is a super talented musician, Marisa has a heart for those who are overlooked and the two of them have been called to start a new church – a place for those who are not church people to come investigate the whole Jesus and church thing. It is called Rain City Church and I can’t wait to watch this church flourish.

A few weeks ago, Marisa asked me if I would like to be part of their fundraising effort to adopt their baby girl from Ethiopia. As we all know, adoption is expensive. But I also know that this sweet baby girl needs a home and Jesse, Marisa and their two boys will be just the blessing she deserves. And so we came up with the idea of a fundraising event that will help them get closer to adopting their baby girl.

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I’m excited {and a little nervous!} to teach a few of my favorite flower making crafts, meet new ladies and eat yummy brunch food – all the while helping the Butterworth’s raise money.  If you live in the Seattle area, I would love for you to join us! You can purchase your ticket {HERE}.

Now I fully realize that most of you do not live in the Seattle area, and so I have a way for you to help out as well.

This is thing two:

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Flower Pins.

For this weekend only, I will be selling these sweet flower pins with proceeds going towards Jesse & Marisa’s adoption fund.

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These pins are great on a jacket, a bag or a scarf and would make a delightful Mother’s Day gift {we’ll ship the pins by Tuesday so that you will have it in time to give to your momma, or your daughter, or your best friend}.

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You can choose yellow or white. Please click below to purchase and help the fundraising efforts of the Butterworth Family’s adoption.

***UPDATE***

Oh, my. What sweet ladies you are to support this great family! Thank you for all of the orders and I hope you wear your flower pin proudly knowing that it played a part in bringing a baby a new loving family.

***

And finally, thing three.

flower-week

Next week {may 2 – 6} I will have a new flower project each day. I’ve been dreaming of this one for a while and I’m so glad MAY is finally here! Please come back on Monday ready to try out some new blossom-making tutorials.

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our living room

Welcome to our living room {beware : I went a little crazy with the photos}

from stairs 2

You may have noticed that the link to this room on the our house page is inactive. That’s because I’ve never done a post about it.

tall from stairs

While it is the main room in our house and the one we hang out in the most, it is not yet ‘finished’. And so I’ve been waiting and waiting until it is done before taking photos and sharing it with you all. But truth be told, I’m not sure if the room will ever be completely done, so I might as well show you how it looks in its mid-finished state.

from corner

When we first moved in, the walls were all the same relaxed khaki color – which is a nice color, but we wanted a bit of definition. And because the room is one of those with walls that never end, we weren’t sure how to paint just the living room without having to continue the color up the second story, into the hallway and around the corners. Plus we are a teensy bit lazy and painting two stories sounded like way too much work.

from bar

So Ryan installed trim at about ceiling height and we painted the bottom half Slate by Restoration Hardware. He also trimmed out the doorways so that we didn’t have to deal with rounded corners and how to paint a straight line on those terrible things.

from kitchen 2

When I say the room is unfinished, I’m mostly referring to the fireplace.  It is a perfectly fine fireplace {I like the white mantle and love that I just have to turn on a light switch to start a fire} but I’ve never been a fan of niches and we have a large irregular one on that massive chimney.

from sofa

On Christmas Eve this past year we decided Santa should buy us a ginormous tv. What a nice Santa to oblige. So we installed it overtop the cut-out with a plan to cover it somehow, but as you can see, we haven’t covered it yet. Or hid the cord.

chimney

So our thought is to clad the fireplace chimney {is that what it’s called?} with old barnwood, or maybe horizontal siding painted white. We’re not sure. And we’re not very good at making decisions like this, so we’ve left it alone. I need Layla to do one of her fancy presto-chango things for me so that I can visualize what it would look like.  But I’m pretty sure either would be better than the hole-behind-the-tv look.

from stairs

This is the view of the room from the front of the house. Ryan’s great idea is to install a roll up garage door where the windows are which would open to our back yard. I LOVE roll up garage doors and would totally go for it if not for our itsy bitsy backyard that backs up to another house directly behind us. We’ll save that one for our someday house where we have an expansive yard with a pool to look at.

from stairs 3

The hanging thing is from Potterybarn and used to hold hanging star votive holders. I am waiting for inspiration to strike to figure out what to hang next – something sort of Anthropologie-ish, I’m thinking.  I wrapped the wrought iron with jute rope to add texture a few months back and I like the change.

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dresser

When we moved in, there were cabinets on either side of the fireplace that were terrible, horrible, no good, very bad ones. So my dear husband built me some new ones which I love.

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I am not sure how to style these shelves, so we currently have a random assortment of things I like: books, photos, plants, silver things.

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candles

books

See that computer tower hidden back there? That is hooked up to the tv so that it can also be used as a big computer screen. My husband is cool like that.

On the shelves live a few baskets to hide the everyday essentials that I prefer to keep out of sight.

dvds

Like dvds, diapers and wipes, toys

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and more toys.

toy baskets

As you well know, I am a neutral girl. I try to add some color with throw pillows, most of which I sew myself. There are currently blue and yellow ones on the couch, but just a few weeks ago I had a funky print with some green in it and the month before that I went with simple white. I don’t think I’ll ever live in a house that remains untouched for years and years. I just can’t commit.

sofa

We have splurged on a few basic pieces for the room. A linen sofa has forever been on my wishlist and when we found this one, I was sold. It is Lee Industries {I think} purchased at Crate & Barrel.  For us it was a splurge {but worth every penny} but then when I see that some sofas sell for thousands and thousands of dollars, I don’t feel so bad about ours.

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Our tufted chairs are from #1 Allen upholstered in a durable mohair-like fabric. I’m a bit protective of the furniture in here and I fully realize that it is silly to have a linen sofa and fancy chairs when this is the living room and you have four kids.  Not practical, but oh so pretty!

curtains

The curtains are from IKEA {what a shock}. I recently visited a new friend while in Texas and she had her curtains done with gathers at the top and I fell in love. I came home, sewed on strips of gathering tape {who knew there was such a thing!} and gathered them until I liked their ruffliness.

airplane

When taking photos I noticed a paper airplane that has probably been stuck up there for weeks.

So there it is : our living room.

Curious about sources? Here they are:

paint: Slate by Restoration Hardware

sofa: Crate & Barrel

chairs: #1 Allen

rug and curtains: IKEA

ottoman: a hand-me-down from my mom

pillow with yellow flowers: Dwell Studio for Target

pillows on sofa: made by me. Assorted fabrics I’ve been collecting.

pillows on tufted chair: made by me. Chipper fabric in back, flower tutorial coming soon

Anything else?

oh, the silver lamps. They are great and are from Restoration Hardware.

I’ll keep you update when changes are made to that fireplace. It may be months from now, but it sure will look nice!

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house of fifty

Have you seen miss Janell’s new e-zine? It is full of gorgeous photos, great ideas and inspiration.

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You can read the magazine {here}.

And be sure to check out page 124-125 for a pretty cute summer download

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{I know, I am totally biased, but I sure love it!}

You can take a peek at House of Fifty {HERE}.

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what I learned while laying at the pool

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Ryan and I snuck away for a few days last week to Palm Springs, California. We’ve been having some dreary weather in the northwest, so we jumped at the chance for sun, sun and more sun.

We did little other than sleep in, lounge at the pool and eat : which was just fine for the both of us.

While sitting at that gorgeous pool, here are some things I thought about:

:: this was the first trip we’ve taken without our kids since our honeymoon. I know, that’s crazy. But I’ve been either pregnant or nursing for the past eight years and it just never happened.  We really should do it more often. It was good to connect without having kids to distract us from just enjoying one another.  If you have the opportunity, I highly recommend it.

:: Who on earth watched our four small children while we were out gallivanting around town? My little sister. Bless her. And my brother-in-law too. It is no small fete to care for your own two children, but then to take four more? Amazing. If you have a friend or sister who will watch your kids so that you can get away, ask them. And then do it for them in return. I highly recommend it.

:: I forgot how much I love reading real, paper books.  Blogs are delightful, but sometimes loosing myself to a novel is the best form of entertainment.

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I read The Help from start to finish and loved every second of it.

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It’s been on my to-read list and I’m so glad I finally got to it. What an amazingly compelling story {I sort of miss the characters now that I’m done!} about a time in history that seems like forever ago, but is sadly not that far gone.  If you haven’t read it yet and need a good read : this is it. I highly recommend it.

:: If you get an email from ‘paypal’ saying that your account has been accessed by someone else and it tells you to click on the link and give them all kinds of personal information : don’t fall for it.  Take it from me, doing so is a big pain. I do NOT highly recommend it.

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in her shoes & the may giveaway

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Camila at effortless style does a fun feature called in her shoes : a different lady each week shows what her average day looks like.

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This week it is my turn. If you’ve ever wondered how a day in my life looks, here’s your chance to see.  You can click here {and be sure to peek around Camila’s blog : it’s delightful}.

. . . . . . . .

Have you noticed the new giveaway button over there on the right? The May giveaway is here.

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Ooohh, this giveaway collection just makes me smile. I hope it does the same for you as well. Flowery things and sunny colors are just right for these spring days.

may giveaway collage

 

1. bunched silk flower pin 2. flora & fauna plate and 3. rose knob – both from Anthropologie

4. set of eight posy note cards with lined envelopes 5. felt flower pillow {tutorial coming} 6. three yards each of pink, orange and green ribbon

7. vintage millinery flower 8. family rules art print 9. flower magnet {there is also a wire word ‘bloom’ that didn’t make it into the collage}

To enter, please head over to the giveaway page by clicking the button below

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{you’ll need to leave a comment on the giveaway page to enter … the comments on this post are now closed so that I don’t confuse you}

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booklets {tutorial}

Do you need a simple project for an easter basket, party favor or something fun to jot down notes in?

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How about making one of these booklets.

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Here is what you’ll need:

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:: booklet template {download pink or orange at the end of the post}

:: multiple sheets of text-weight paper

:: sewing machine, paper cutter

:: rubber stamps & ink to personalize

STEP ONE: trim template to size {7 x 5}

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STEP TWO: cut filler paper to size {4.875 x 6.875}

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I stacked four sheets so when folded my booklets would have eight blank sheets. You could add as many or few as you’d like.

You’ll have this:

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STEP THREE: fold the booklet cover and inside pages in half

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STEP FOUR: assemble the booklet

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STEP FIVE: stitch along the folded line using a straight stitch

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See? So simple.

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You can embellish the front however you like : I used my favorite letter stamps to personalize, but handwriting or stickers would also be darling.

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Add it to the easter basket along with colored pencils or crayons for a cute handmade sketchbook.

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You are welcome to use my templates:

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easter buckets {and the april winner}

elissa

Please email me at emily@jonesdesigncompany and I’ll send out your April Giveaway package.

. . . . . . . .

My babes are getting buckets this year for easter.

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I found the galvanized buckets at ikea for $1.99 each and then added a sticker to each to identify whose is whose {or is it who’s is whose? Oh, why is the english language so complicated}.

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My mom was always so great about making holidays special : and I’m trying to follow in her footsteps. This is my attempt to put together a fun easter bucket for my kiddos.

easter buckets

In the boys':

no 3

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A home-made bunny, personalized booklet {tutorial to come}, colored pencils and lots of sugar.

boy bucket 1

boy bucket 2

In the little girl’s:

no 4

no 4 again

A girlie version of the bunny, an easter board book, booklet {for all the drawing a one year old does}, some embellished mary janes and a peep.

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Suede flowers stitched to Old Navy shoes.

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My baby is lucking out this year and getting her own bunny peep.

The bunnies were made using this pattern and were very simple to make.

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After making the first one, I altered the pattern a bit. I made the head a bit rounder and elongated the legs. I also embroidered the face before stitching the bunny together {since I couldn’t figure out how to hide the knots once the little guy was sewn shut}.

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While I totally get that Easter is not all about bunnies and jelly beans and peeps, I always enjoy giving my kiddos little gifts : they are pretty sweet!

. . . . . . . . .

coming soon :

the new May giveaway

tutorial & free download for the booklets

an invitation to a local craft fundraiser {where I’m teaching the crafts!}

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what a surprise … I went with color

I’m not sure what happened, but I spent some time creating new art prints and it seems I was in to

I’m so pleased with how they turned out {I love it when that happens!} and am excited to add them to the shop.

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sweet dreams

rise and shine gloryplay

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bed

home

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To see the entire collection of art prints, please click {H E R E}.

Thanks for shopping!

 

 

[wp_eStore_fancy3 id=106]

 

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thank you and a good children’s book

Thank you kindly for your words of encouragement yesterday. Sometimes I just need to share my heart {however embarrassingly honest it is} and I love that 1. I receive such wisdom from you sweet ladies and 2. I feel more normal as many of you struggle with the same things.  So thank you.

And have no fear : I am not going anywhere.  Writing this blog is my job, my ministry and one of my favorite hobbies, so I won’t be giving it up anytime soon. Just trying to keep it real.

I will have a real post tomorrow, but for now {while Audrey is sitting in my lap and #3 is waiting not-so-patiently to play Sorry – my worst favorite game to play with kids} I will leave you with a great recommendation for a springtime children’s book.

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Bear Wants More is a happy story with delightful illustrations about a hungry bear and his wilderness friends.  My little ones love it {and so do I!}.

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There is a whole series of Bear books and I’d like to add them all to our collection.

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Enjoy your day : now I’m off for a long game of sorry.

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things around here

A few photos from today:

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Sometimes yellow is just what you need to add some sunshine to your home.

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I’m so inspired by this spread from Holiday with Matthew Mead {I know it is a holiday publication, but I want my house to reflect this calm warmth all year long}.

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The boys and I made these decoupage easter eggs {tutorial found at Dear Lillie}.

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Sometimes the simplest things like tissue paper flowers in an old basket can make the loveliest centerpiece.

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A gorgeous hellebore from Nonna’s garden promises that spring is here.

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I am finally getting around to painting the walls in our bedroom {Bedford Gray by Martha Stewart}.  I’m not sure I’m in love yet :

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The april giveaway collection is just hanging out on the dining room table waiting to be won {you can enter here}.

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Lots and lots of legos : a new organization system is in the works. Not sure if it will stand the test of time, but its worth a shot.

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This bible study is changing my heart. And life.

Things around here are pretty. Flowers, pillows, happy children with plenty of toys. My life looks pretty. And for the most part, I can say that things are great.

But my heart is heavy : in a new sort of way. I say I’m in a funk, but I’m not sure that it accurately describes how I feel. My heart is being refined and while it hurts a little, it is a good hurt. 

I’ve been realizing the past few weeks my life is out of balance. I love doing the work that I do, am inspired by it, fulfilled, motivated and encouraged daily by you sweet ladies. But I also have four children whom I love. A husband who is fun to be around, friends who live literally next door. And yet, half the time I choose writing a blog post or designing a new print or emailing a reader over them. Maybe even more than half the time. 

I don’t confess this for any other reason than to let you know that I am not as put together as I appear. Or would like to be. Or would like you to think I am.  Just so we’re all on the same page. I struggle. I have bad mommy days. I go weeks without spending time with really great girl friends. My laundry piles up and there is a lot of dust on our unused piano.  My motives are often impure and most of the time I don’t even recognize it. 

We’re all in the same boat : trying to do the best we can, sometimes finding success, other times unable to escape the fact that we’re failing miserably. 

While in Houston, my best friend and I were talking about these things when this scripture came to mind:

1 If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. 3 If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it;but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.

1 corinthians 13: 1-3

I try so hard to be the best blogger or the best designer or decorator or project do-er {or fill-in-the-blank} and yet, if I am not loving those around me I am nothing.  How much of my time and energy is spent on doing and striving and forgetting about the simple {and loving} things like phoning my mom or sending a note to a struggling friend? I hate to admit the truth.

I don’t really want to be a clanging cymbal. They are sort of annoying.

And so, I am on this journey – a hard, painful, beautiful journey – of figuring out how to genuinely love. Not out of selfish gain, but out of sacrificial goodness.  The book I’m reading says that the mark of maturity is love. I sure hope I can get there soon.

Be encouraged today. And perhaps you can put an extra dose of love into your everyday occurrences – it truly is the most excellent way.

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painted wallpaper how-to & share your project

Painting ‘wallpaper’ in my office has been one of the most ambitious projects I’ve done : but it totally paid off. Even after eight months, I still love it. And I’m pretty fickle, so that says a lot.

painted wallpaper wall

I know many of you have done your own versions and I’m so excited to see what you’ve accomplished. At the end of the post, you can link to your blog to share.

If you are thinking about painting the wallpaper pattern, you can read the first tutorial {HERE}. I’ve updated the template, which you can also find at the end of this post.

One question that I get from time to time is “how do you create the double lines?”. So here is a mini-tutorial on how it was done. For ease, I did this on our large chalkboard with a chalk pen, so just pretend that it is a wall, I am tracing with a pencil, and that I am using a paintbrush and paint to fill it in.

First, cut out your pattern.

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Next, start at the top of your wall {or chalkboard, in my case} and trace around the pattern.

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To get the double line, move the template down and space it out about 1/2 inch from the first.

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When you trace it, it will look like this:

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Keep going :

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: and you’ll eventually cover your surface.

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When you are ready to paint, use a 1/4 inch flat artists’ brush and paint along the inside of each shape.

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Here is how it looked when I really did it.

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If you look closely, you’ll notice some pencil lines. I suppose I could have erased them when the paint was dry, but they don’t bother me.  The finished walls are not perfect, but they are interesting and add subtle pattern and they make me smile.

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If you’d like to give it a try, you can download the template below.

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Now, if you’ve done your own painted wallpaper, please share you project!

share your project

. instructions .

1. link directly to your post {not just your blog}

2. add the ‘share your project’ link button to your post {copy & paste}

Enjoy clicking around for lots of painted wallpaper inspiration!

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these april showers are never-ending

For those of us who live in the Pacific Northwest, the phrase ‘April Showers Bring May Flowers’ holds quite a bit of truth. Because, truth be told, it rains a lot in April.

As in  every . single . day.

But without all of this sideways rain, we wouldn’t enjoy all that it does for us : the greenest green grass, flowering trees and shrubs, tulips and daffodils that pop up everywhere and enough water to keep our lakes and rivers full and clean.

April rain holds a promise of beauty to come : at least that is what I am telling myself to make it through these soggy days!

In honor of the crazy spring weather, I’ve created a new art print

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spring

 

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wire words

When Ryan & I were expecting our first baby, we thought it would be fun to throw a ‘revealing’ party.  I created these sweet little invitations {eight years ago!} and used wire we had laying around to write ‘baby’.

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{Just thought I’d show you the inside of the invitation. It was such a fun party and great memory. Oops, nice typo on the word September. I never noticed until today}.

I have no idea where the wire words idea came from : but I’ve been using it over and over since then.

baby

claira

audrey

So here’s how you do it:

supplies

You’ll need:

::wire {I’m not sure what gauge to buy, but something that you can bend easily with your hands. I prefer that thicker one on the black roll, but the thin one works fine too}

:: scissors

:: a template of your printed word, if you prefer

To create a word FREEHAND:

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Start bending the wire into cursive letters as you would write them with a pen.

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You may need to be creative on some letters {like the a which loops over the top in a clockwise circle rather than the normal counter-clockwise way you write}

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Cut off the end and create a loop.

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To create a word with a TEMPLATE:

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Print your word of choice in a cursive font {I used Little Days} in the size you like.

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‘Trace’ the word as you bend the wire.

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enjoy 3

 

 

 

 

 

See? Easy as can be. And pretty cute, if I do say so myself.

. . . . . . . . . . .

One more thing. It has absolutely nothing to do with wire words, but totally deserves some attention.

Do you read The Lettered Cottage? Did you see what the darling team of Layla & Kevin have come up with now?

This was their reading room ‘before’ {which I loved}

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And here it is as a guest room ‘after’.

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It is so great I gasped when I first saw it. Love everything about the space. Especially the salvaged wood on the walls. And the built-in bed. And that grain sack pillow and wall lamp.

Nicely done Mr. & Mrs. Lettered Cottage. You are amazing.

. . . . . . . . .

And one more BIG thing.

It is my niece’s birthday today.

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Not that she reads my blog or anything, but her momma does and I love her so she gets a little shout-out from her auntie.

. . . . . . . . . . .

Okay. Have a great day!

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pink

My cousin is having her first baby in just a few weeks and so I wanted to make something special for baby Olivia Rose.

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She received a special dolly, embellished onesie, set of burp cloths and a headband.

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I loved these burp cloths for my spitty baby and think they make a nice gift for a mommy-to-be. You can see the tutorial {here}. 

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A teensy embellished onesie always looks sweet on a new babe. These flowers are fun {a new tutorial is coming soon}.

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And the doll. Love these dolls. I use {this} pattern and have made several dolls as gifts {you can see more that I made for other girlies in my life here}. For the Olivia doll, I cut apart a pair of ruffled undies to make her skirt. I know, weird. But I saw them at Walmart and figured they would be perfect!  Her body is made of a canvasy-linen. 

I enjoy putting together a fun gift, but I probably love wrapping more than anything.

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Paper Source has a great selection of solid gift wrap {I used chocolate}. A little seam binding, a flower headband, bent wire tag and paper tag all make for a cute presentation.  Another favorite way to wrap is to roll tissue and cellophane around a gift and tie both ends with ribbon. 

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Audrey joined me at the baby shower so I figured I should add her name to the gift tag.

Can’t wait to meet the new sweet baby!

. . . . . . . . . .

sponsors

The ladies who sponsor jones design company are delightful – each with unique businesses, ideas, ministries and talents.  I am thankful for their support! You can read more about them {here}.

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these hands

I took these photos one afternoon a few weeks ago.  It was a moment when I was truly cherishing my little ones.

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With their sweet hands that clean.

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And build.

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And craft.

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And draw.

But I’m afraid I don’t always cherish these moments. Too often, I see it like this:

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Audrey wasting another diaper wipe.

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#3 making a mess in the living room.

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#2 using far too much tape.

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#1 leaving his papers strewn about the table. Again.

Ugh. I hate admitting that.  Do you know what I mean, though? So often I miss the joy of their playfulness and creativity because I’m more concerned about things like wasting tape and not wanting to clean up another mess. Things that are necessary, no doubt, but not things that show my children how much I value them.

My babies’ hands make messes. They hit. They drop their food on the floor and wipe their sticky fingers on the sofa.

But they are everything I’ve ever hoped for.

They are full of curiosity and unlimited talent. They share their toys. They offer to help. They draw amazing pictures and write silly stories. And they give the sweetest hugs.

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I created this little note card to put up in my office : sometimes I just need a gentle reminder to refocus my perspective. Perhaps you do as well.

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Being a mommy can be a thankless job. We may not hear much gratitude for all we do, but I know that simply by loving our families to the best of our ability, we are making a difference. And perhaps with the right attitude, this great responsibility and honor can be full of joy and grace even when it’s messy.

***UPDATE***

Sorry that I overlooked that many people have one child! So here is a card for you.

And a family one as well.

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