Archive | March, 2012

this week in photos {instagram is my new fave}

Well, I finally joined the twenty-first century.

I bought an iphone.

It was a long time coming and I’m sort of in love with it {even though I don’t know the half of what it can do}.

I’ve seen you all take artsy photos with your phones on instagram and I’ll admit there was a bit of jealousy.  The photos just looked so cool.

When I received my phone, instagram was the first app I installed. Fruit Ninja was the second {but that’s for a different post}.

Now that I’m all fancy with this phone that I don’t know how to use, I can at least take some fun pictures and link up with InstaFriday at Life Rearranged.

So here is my week in photos.

You know how they say the grass is not always greener on the other side? Well I’m here to say that in my world, it is actually greener on the other side.

The boys were sick all week so there was a lot of laying around snuggling.

And while they were doing that, I tackled this:


looks pretty fun, right?

and after

Why do closets collect junk so easily?

My mom & sugar daddy came over to visit our infirmary and sweet girl got a hair cut.

Lolly pops do wonders. So do grandmas and grandpas.

I am officially addicted to these:

My closet:

For a girl who is a little afraid of color, that sure is a lot of color. And stripes.

I took the kids out to our local pizza place. It is fun there because they give the kids pizza dough to play with.

We had a really great time until I knocked my root beer all down my lap.  I should have asked for a lid for mine too.

Am I the worst mommy ever for thinking Sorry is the most brutal Family Game Night game?

This is what my boys do {well, except for when they are begging to play Sorry}

Lego battles.  Its cute – in a violent, troubling sort of way.

Obnoxiously hot pink stubby little toes.

And one last one. Yesterday I browsed through my new Southern Living magazine and these pretty punch bowls caught my eye.

Until I saw that they were $1000. Are you kidding me? Do people pay $1000 for a punch bowl?

Who knew.

Well, now you know what we did this week. I hope you were entertained by the randomness.

I’m finally linking with InstaFriday.

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what i wish i wore

It’s What I Wore Wednesday at The Pleated Poppy today. Have you seen how many ladies are linking up with Lindsey these days? My goodness, this WIWW thing is big.

I was on a roll for the past few months with photographing my outfits, but I’ve decided to take a short break.

To tell you the truth, I’m not crazy about taking awkward photos of myself and then sharing them with the world. It’s sort of embarrassing. Second, pretty much everything I wear is from Target {except my jeans. I like expensive jeans.} so I feel super dorky sourcing my outfits and writing Target five million times. And third, we are finishing up an exciting new project {details to come in the next few days!} and I haven’t had much time think about clothes, let alone take a shower.

Oh, and the flimsy $10 mirror that I had propped up on a cardboard box {classy, right?} cracked so I need to get a new full length mirror. I’m thinking I’ll spring for something a little bit nicer next time.

Fashion is most definitely not my forte, but I do like clothes and I like a cute, coordinated, casual outfit.  The web is filled with all sorts of fashion inspiration.

So in honor of WIWW, I’ll share with you:

Love this outfit.

{source unknown – from my pinterest board}

So pretty.

{source unknown}

jeans + blouse + cardigan. I think I need a white watch.


Adorable. See? White watch again. Maybe that’s the same girl. She’s cute.


And then I found my best friend’s pinterest board called ‘my closet’. Good thing she lives right down the street and she lets me borrow her clothes because I’d wear every one of the outfits in her closet.



double yes.

If you ever need inspiration with what outfit to put together, jump on to pinterest and browse the thousands of fashion boards.  You are sure to be inspired.

For more real-life WIWW, click over to The Pleated Poppy.

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My husband makes fun of me because every time a new holiday comes I adamantly declare that it is my favorite.

But Easter really is my favorite.

Christmas gets all the attention.  We spend months preparing, decorating, shopping for the beloved holiday. Christmas is great, don’t get me wrong.  And without Christmas we would not have Easter. But sometimes it gets a little carried away.

That is what I like best about Easter.

There isn’t a lot of fanfare with this one. No crazy parking lots filled with anxious shoppers. No long post office lines. No wishlists or shopping lists or holiday card lists.

Growing up, our Easters consisted of Easter basket scavenger hunts, Sandi Patti playing on the record player and fancy Easter dresses made by my mom. We ate breakfast {baked blueberry french toast} in the dining room with real cloth napkins and fresh flowers on the table.  We wore our new dresses to church then on to a big family gathering where the cousins overdosed on candy and dirtied our pretty pastel outfits.  Sometimes we did an Easter egg hunt, sometimes not.

But ALWAYS at some point in the day we heard:

“He is Risen!”

to which we answered back:

“He is risen, indeed!”

Did you grow up saying this too? Doesn’t it just make you smile? There is something so happy about that phrase. Spiritually, of course. But also the idea of a fresh start, new life, a sense of hopefulness and excitement that surrounds this time of year.

I was thinking about the phrase a few weeks ago and asked if Lindsay would create a print for us for this Easter season.

What she created is so beautiful – both in design and spiritual truth.  I am so excited to share her creations with you today.

Because sitting down for breakfast at a special table is a favorite memory of mine, I decided to set a few Easter tables of my own {using Lindsay’s artwork as inspiration}.  There are lots of do-it-yourself ideas here as well as simple ways to set a pretty table. Perhaps it can inspire your Easter decorations this year.

{P.S. Before setting these tables, I had to google ‘how to set a table’. That’s how fancy I am.}

linen + white + industrial basket + vintage glassware

and the perfect little place cards

printed paper + ribbon-tied napkin + coordinating chocolates in a pretty dish

with a lovely print to send home with each guest

fresh flowers + pretty china + playful polkadots

paper plates + candy appetizer + crepe paper flower

a name tag tied to a flower makes a special party favor

. . . . . . . . . . .

So does that give you any ideas for your Easter table?

If you would like to use Lindsay’s artwork as part of your decoration, we have put together a great collection for you.

This is a printable file with each of these designs in all three colorways {teal, green, navy}.

You can print as many as you need, give them as gifts or use in your own home.

download the whole collection for FREE!


Click here to sign in or join to access all of our best freebies.

. . . . . . . . . . .

table setting sources

Happy Easter!

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rain rain go away

Spring in the Pacific Northwest is notorious for its unpredictability and split personality. One minute its pouring – usually when we’re headed out the door – and the next it is bright and sunny.  But the good news is, spring means the birds are out chirping again, little buds are forming on our trees and shrubs and daffodils are poking their yellow heads out of the ground. These things make me happy.  So do bright spring clothes {not so much the new neon trend, though}, colorful raincoats and playfully patterned umbrellas.

I was inspired by all of this in the new April installment of JDC | monthly.

{april art print}

JDC | monthly is a great way to stay organized, receive seasonal art prints and note cards and do a simple project that your friends and family will surely appreciate.

When you become a member, you will receive a collection of printable paper goods {on the 22nd of each month so you have time to get yourself organized before the new month begins}.  You can print as many of each item as you need – many of the items included make great gifts, too.

Included in the April Collection is {from left to right}:

note cards . dinnertime calendar . chore chart . grocery list . monthly calendar . shopping list . weekly calendar . scripture cards . houseduties chart {and the art print shown above}

The project featured this month is for these darling patterned envelopes.

They fit the note cards in the collection as well as a 4 x 6 photograph – perfect for sending updated photos to loved ones {note to self: send updated photos to loved ones}.

Upon signing up, you will have instant access to all of the pdf files. Download and print, or save them to your computer for a rainy day.

JDC | monthly members will also receive 50% off all printables in the shop.


Click the button below to receive JDC | monthly via email for $9.99 {first month is free}.

the fine print:

You will receive the link to the monthly collection immediately after signing up. Billing is done on a 30 day cycle {so if you join on the 15th, you will be billed the following month on the 15th}. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the collection of pdfs, as well as the video tutorial.

If you decide JDC | monthly is not for you, you are free to cancel at any time.

Questions? Please feel free to email me at

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Random stuff to chat about today …

First up, tulips.

I’m so glad spring is here. Even if the first spring flowers do look a bit unruly after only a few days.

Can you tell what we’re working on in our household?

It goes for me too. I may not stomp up the stairs or cry when asked to do something I don’t want to do, but I certainly mope in my own way.  We’re working on that …

This weekend I went to a baby shower and ate the most delicious brunch/dessert ever.

crepe cake

I’m not sure what recipe the hostesses used, but it was delicious. The filling was a mixture of cream cheese, strawberry preserves and whipped cream. Then we poured hot fudge and sliced almonds over. Yum. Very healthy too {I’m kidding.}

Want to see something else that is not healthy?

Ugh. Those beauties are not looking so good. Any suggestions for cracked nails? Clearly I need some help.

Let’s look at something prettier for a moment …

Isn’t that herringbone brick floor the best? {and the velvet settee and molding and urns …}

One thing I like about my kids is that they all like to draw and color.

We leave their craft stuff accessible – which means the kitchen table is almost always a mess – but I like that they can draw whenever creativity {or boredom} strikes.

Have you entered the March giveaway yet? There is still time …

Have you seen this no-heat-curl-method for getting nice wavy hair?

I tried it a few days ago.

This is while in progress … I look a bit like the Queen Mother, yes?

I wish I could say the no-heat-curling method worked … but it was sort of a bust. At least for me. Probably due to user error and the fact that my hair is ridiculously long and thick.

If you have medium-weight hair and have had a hair cut within the past 8 months {oops … time to schedule one} I bet this would work great.

You can watch a really cute video for how to create the curls here.  Let me know how you hair turns out.

And we’ll end today’s chat with this:

I’m brainstorming ideas for a new spring wreath.

Last year’s is quite pretty and I’ll be re-using it somewhere in the house.

But I’d like something new and different for our front door this spring.

Here are a few great inspiration ideas:

1.2.3.  | 4.5.

We’ll see if I can come up with something as pretty and I’ll be sure to post a tutorial when I am finished.

As always, thanks so much for reading, commenting, linking, liking and the sweet notes you send. I’m beyond grateful and flattered by your kindness and friendship {even if we’ve never met in real life}. You are great.

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every blog needs a cause

When we remodeled our kitchen, we put in an instant hot water tap.  We use it multiple times a day. For oatmeal, instant coffee, tea, hot cocoa, sanitizing cutting boards.

It falls on the list of things you never knew you needed until you experience the convenience of it. Its that great.

A few weeks ago, I was making myself a cup of tea and as I was filling my cup with hot water, I thought to myself, “this instant hot water tap is such a lifesaver”.

And then suddenly my heart countered with this: “what a spoiled brat I am. Here I am filling my cup with already perfectly heated water when there are people who have no water at all.”

Don’t you love/hate when conviction hits you like that.

A few weeks prior we received a note with some drawings from our sponsored child in Lesotho. On his drawing was a water tap that his village had just received. The boys and I talked about what a tap is and I explained to them that in many parts of the world children can’t just turn on a faucet and get unlimited clean water. It was a quick conversation and probably didn’t make the impact on them that I wished.  Truthfully, the concept of no clean water is a bit unfathomable to me as well. It is just not a part of our everyday reality.

Our church is a big sponsor of the most amazing non-profit called charity: water.

Perhaps you’ve heard of it. They provide clean drinking water to remote villages in developing nations. It seems like such a basic thing, clean drinking water, and yet it is not available to nearly one billion people.

If you have a second, please watch this video:

I seriously cry through this every time I watch it. That women and children spend most of their day collecting water {unsafe, dirty, disease-causing water, at that} breaks my heart. It makes me thankful for what I have, disgusted with my ungratefulness and hopeful that I can help solve the water crisis.

I am a proud supporter of charity: water and would love to help spread the word about this important organization {and ultimately give clean water to those who need it most}.

If this is a cause you would like to help out with, I have set up a campaign and would be honored if you would partner with me to provide water for 50 people before the end of the month. Even if you can only give $1, it will make a difference.

You can donate by clicking here.

But here’s the thing: if this cause does not pierce your heart and you are not compelled to give, that is totally okay.

In the very wise words of Beth Moore:

“Social consciousness beckons each of us across the board, but the ways we could respond are as varied as our holy passions. We are called to tend to the poor, but adjust your lens and see what specific opportunities make your heart jump … or maybe sink”.  {from the James study, page 86}

Children suffering is what makes my heart sink.

Maybe for you it is teenage pregnancy or sex-trafficking or single mothers.  Maybe child-abuse or orphans or homelessness.  There are so many different groups in need and so many different ways to offer hope.

If there is anything I’ve learned thus far in my faith it is this: Jesus doesn’t want us just believing in Him so that we can guarantee a comfy spot in heaven. Nope. He wants us to believe in Him so that we can make a difference in this life, on this earth by offering His grace, love, peace and hope to everyone we can.

On the sidebar of my blog almost all the way down, you’ll see this graphic:

I have chosen to use my blog to share charity: water. If you write a blog, I encourage you to find a cause that you support and share it with your readers as well. You are welcome to grab this button and add it to your sidebar, and then add the button from the charity you support.

If you don’t have a blog, don’t worry. The main point is just to find something you stand behind and use your life to make an impact.

If we can use our blogs to help, I say, go for it.

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fabric covered monogram

Today seems like a good day to share a simple project as seen on our wall of L’s.

The thing I like most about this project {besides the fact that it is quick and easy} is that you can totally customize this … make a huge letter for a wall or a small one as a gift topper. I even made one to hang on our front door at Christmastime {embellished with ribbons, a merry christmas banner and crepe paper flower}.

So let’s get to it.

Here’s what you’ll need:

:: piece of sturdy cardboard {I used the back of an old calendar, but any box from the recycle bin will do}

:: fabric

:: scissors or x-acto knife and cutting mat

:: hot glue gun

:: spray adhesive

:: pencil

STEP ONE: draw your letter on the cardboard. You can print a letter and trace it, or just freehand. Remember that you will want the letter to be thick enough to make an impact {go back to your middle school bubble-letter-making-days}

STEP TWO: cut out

at first I used scissors, then I realized that an x-acto knife would make it much easier.

Once it is cut out, you can make little adjustments to the letter, if needed.

STEP THREE: cut fabric to size

My fabric was double sided so this didn’t apply, but in most cases, be sure to flip your letter so that the print side of the fabric will be on the front of the letter {right sides together}.

STEP FOUR: use spray adhesive to secure the fabric to the front of the letter, smoothing any wrinkles as you go.

STEP FIVE: make snips around corners so the fabric will lay flat

STEP SIX: run a small bead of hot glue around the edge of the letter and press down the fabric to secure

If you have center holes, just snip into the center with your scissors and make those same little cuts to get the fabric to lay flat as you glue around the corners.

And you’re done!

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back in stock

Remember the lovely prints Lindsay created for us?

The print was hand-calligraphy-ed and then foil stamped onto slate cardstock.

With whimsical lettering, a subtle heart shape and handsome coloring, it is the perfect gift for weddings, anniversaries or to simply remind you of what is most important in life.

We had a limited supply that sold out very quickly right before Valentine’s Day.  And I’m happy to announce that a new shipment has just arrived and is now available for purchase.

Again, it is a limited supply, so grab one while you can!

*** UPDATE***

The prints have sold out. If you are interested in purchasing this print, please leave a comment and I will order a new batch.

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our new favorite easy reader books

A few days ago we went to the library in search of early-reader appropriate books for my No. 2. #2 is in kindergarten and doing great with reading {beyond the BOB series, but not quite ready for regular children’s books}.  I wanted to find a handful of books that he would be able to read on his own but also keep his busy mind and body occupied … he is a six-year-old boy, after all.

We hit the jackpot.

Have you heard of the Elephant & Piggie series by Mo Willems? They are great.

Simple words, silly stories, charming illustrations.

The perfect books to instill a joy of reading, confidence in making it through a whole book and cute giggles heard throughout the pages.

You can see all of the books in the Elephant & Piggie series here.

And see more of Mo Willems work here.

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a wall of L’s

We have this random nook between the dining room and the staircase that fits our piano perfectly. The wall above the piano is one of the first things you see when you walk into our home, so while I want it to make a statement, I have never known quite how to go about it.

Last year, I put up a crazy bird collage {seen here}. A few months later, I took it down and added a silhouette painting I did of our kids {seen here}.  At Christmas, we moved the piano and put our tree up in this space {seen here}, but once it came down the walls have remained bare and crying out for something new.

Graphic typography and monograms have always caught my eye and over the years I have collected a few L’s {my married last initial … my maiden name is Jones}. One day a few weeks ago, inspiration struck and I decided to group some of the collection and create a wall of L’s over the piano.

Here’s how it turned out:

Fun, right?

I’m really happy with it.

I kept with a gray/white/black/ theme to keep it neutral. Only a few of the letters were purchased {at the craft store} and the rest were made with things I had laying around the house.

Here are some close-ups:

descriptions from left to right:

1. fabric covered cardboard cutout {tutorial to come}

2. framed glitter letter with linen backing

3. wooden letter in vintage frame

4. watercolored L in large IKEA frame {one of the first projects I did when we moved into our house nearly 6 years ago … so many blank walls to fill!}

5. chalkboard painted board with handdrawn letter {this is acutally the back of a frame that was broken. I just tossed the frame and glass and kept the back, painted it with two coats of chalkboard paint and used the hanger on the back to hang it up. Super easy}

6. vintage linen hankie with layered scrapbook paper and a printed L {font: barocca monograms}

7. My favorite. I used the old cardboard backing from a vintage frame, glued on a cut out letter and wrote in No. 6 {for six people in our family}.

8. wooden letter and old playing card

9. framed book page monogram {tutorial here}

Not shown:

large cardboard letter from the craft store decoupaged with scrapbook paper

There are so many great ways to add a personal touch to your home and I think adding your family initial is one of my favorites.

And I’m hoping this wall display will stay for a while.

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for all you yellow-lovers {and giveaway lovers, too}

First things first, the winner of the February Giveaway is …

who says

I couldn’t agree more. Plus, the word divine is a really good one.

So Julie, please send me an email with your address and I’ll put your lovely goodies in the mail!

Next up … the new March giveaway.

Going with the theme of cheerful yellow, this collection is full of it {both yellow and cheer}.

One lucky lady will win:

1. two 16×16 pillow covers by Modest Pillows 2. sheet of dot gift wrap 3. set of four napkins from Lemonade Makin’ Mama 4. mini modern pearl necklace in mustard by Allora Handmade 5. chalkboard call-out mug + chalk 6. dwell studios notebook 7. bar of fancy soap 8. polka dot napkins 9. set of six scallop note cards + envelopes

A special thank you to these ladies for offering their delightful products!

Stylish pillow covers that add a dash of color … shop here.

Hand-painted signs, silk-screened goods and original artwork made by the charming Sasha … shop here.

The most delightful flower pins, necklaces and more … shop here.

To enter the March Giveaway, click the button below.

Good luck!

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vintage baby shower invitations

Even though my business has moved away from doing custom invitations, I love being able to do a few projects here and there for family and friends.

My dear friend Julia is pregnant with her third baby {the first girl} and I was the invitation-creator for her upcoming shower.

She is one of those friends who makes yummy homemade meals and gives the most thoughtful gifts and so I wanted to reciprocate and make the baby shower invitations special, thoughtful and unique.

She has a love of vintage things, likes sweet but not too girlie, and is definitely not into pink.  And she comes from an Italian family {hence the baby amore}.

I think the combination of the cursive font, scalloped edge, linen, vintage lace, trim and stitched top give it the feminine, vintage feel I was hoping for.

The cards are petite and when put in the envelope there was a enough room to be able to stitch them closed.

Did you know you can sew paper?

Simple handmade invitations.   And a pretty keepsake for the mommy-to-be.

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she’s two

In January 2010, this blog was born. It had been around for a few months prior, but it really came to life right around the new year. I was very, very pregnant with No.4 – our first girl – and those first few posts often centered around her. Her nursery, her name, girlie projects and sharing the emotions all mommies go through at the end of their pregnancies {excitement for the new babe, nervousness about change, impatience with just wanting to be done}.

The blog was started when she was growing inside me and in a weird way, I feel like she is what inspired it.  For some reason, having a daughter awoke a greater sense of creativity in me that I wanted to share.  I suddenly desired to expand beyond stationery design into sewing and crafting and creating as many flowers as I could figure out how to make.

I love this little girl and all the ways she has changed our family … and especially me.

Many of you have been here from the beginning. You remember those first posts, the frequent photos of our sweet newborn girl wearing yet another headband. You’ve heard stories about Audrey and watched her grow along side of us.

Every once in a while I meet a reader while out running errands. The way they recognize me is almost always because they recognized Audrey first. That makes me smile.  I like sharing her life here on the blog – someday she will protest, but for now she’s my little companion and muse and favorite spunky/sweet two-year-old and I just can’t resist sharing her with you.

Audrey-girl turned two a few weeks ago, which means the blog did as well.  They are both growing, changing, and bring me {and hopefully you!} such joy.

I thank you for being a part of our lives. It has been the best two years.



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