Thursday, April 24, 2014

Time to Move!

Well, hello there!  You have stumbled across my old blog!  I'm not here anymore, so follow the link to find me at my new digs....

Thank you! See you soon!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Chalk It Up

I really like chalkboards.
Some day I'll probably wonder why I ever thought it was cute
to randomly scatter chalkboards all over my house. 

But for now, chalkboards are a fun and inexpensive way
to add a little something spunky to my house.
Besides, it's fun to take something old and ugly and make it fun and functional!

Let me show you how it's done!


old framed print with glass
spray paint or acrylic craft paint for the frame
chalkboard spray paint for the glass
fine sandpaper
glass cleaner
hot glue gun

1. Disassemble.

First thing you need to do is take your ugly old framed print apart. 
Rip off the paper backing and disassemble.
Save the actual print and cardboard backing because you are going to need it later.

2. Paint the frame.

Spray paint is fine if the weather is cooperating for you to paint outside.  
Otherwise,  brush on some acrylic craft paint.  

I like to distress the paint with a little sandpaper treatment here and there.

3. Paint the glass.

Lay your glass from the frame on a flat surface and sand one side with fine sandpaper.
This will help the paint adhere and you will not see the scratches.
Next clean the glass with glass cleaner and clear of any dust from your work surface in preparation for the chalk paint.

I prepare a table in my garage with newspaper,
 lay the glass flat(sanded side up),and spray several thin coats of chalkboard spray paint.
Just follow the directions on the can. 

Don't even think about writing on it yet!

4. Prep the chalkboard surface.

After the required drying time, the chalkboard surface needs to be prepped.
Remove any dust from the surface with a dust cloth.  
Using the side of a piece of chalk, slowly cover the entire surface with chalk.  
Then "erase" the chalk with a soft cloth or eraser.

(In case you were wondering...this step is important! 
If you don't prep the surface this way, you will forever see the first words you write 
no matter how hard you try to erase them. Trust me.)

 5. Re-assemble.

First place the chalkboard painted glass back into the frame.
The front of the painted glass and the front of the frame 
will be face down on your table for this step.

Use your hot glue gun to make a globby bead of glue 
all the way around the inside edge of the frame to hold the glass in place.
Like this:

Now it's time to put the ugly print/cardboard backing back into the frame.
Again, run a bead of hot glue around the edge to hold the cardboard in place.
Like this:

It will now look something like this.  

You could quit at this point and hang her up on your wall, 
but I can't stand to leave the back side so ugly when the front is so cute.  

6. Don't stop now.

This chalkboard is for my niece. It's going to need one more final step of cutesification.

Measure the frame and cut out a piece of backing paper.
This baking paper can be anything--I just happen to hoard old maps.

Glue on the backing with tacky glue.  
You can trim any excess paper with an exacto knife.

That looks WAY better, right?

7. But wait! There's more! 

Why not take the map scraps and make some bunting too?

This one is for you, Mikaela Joi.
Hope you love it!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

When Plan B is Best

Nobody signed up for my first attempt at art class.

There. I said it. I was so disappointed. I even cried.

Yes, I cried. Is that weird?  I thought it was.

I asked the Mr., "What's the deal? Why am I so sad about this?"

The obvious response, "Because this is important to you."

This past year has been a recovery effort--recovering creativity, recovering dreams.

So when I try something and it "fails," the first thing my heart hears is the enemy's voice saying,

"See, I told you so. Give it up. Nobody cares. It doesn't matter."

At first, I was ready to chuck the whole idea out the window.

How very mature.

It took me a few days to dig myself out.

Sometimes we have die to our own ideas to make room for God's.

I fought back the lies and held my dreams loosely.

I now have a class of two.

Jacob and Josie are the most committed, enthusiastic,

 and eager art students I could ever ask for.

It's our favorite subject.

As you can see, sometimes even Gabby can't resist joining the fun.

I love this time together more than words can say.

I may not have the class I had imagined, but this class still matters.

 It matters because the gifts God gives are important, 

even for a class of two.

We'll see...I might open up this art class idea again someday.

After all, God didn't say "no."

It was a "not yet."  

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

What Would You Do For Pie?

I have special place in my heart for Pie.

This Pie.

I don't know how or why, but she stole my heart.
I couldn't help myself.
They call their foster baby "Pie."
 I call her adorable.

Having fostered a baby for just a short time,
I have deep appreciation and admiration for foster moms.

It. Ain't. Easy.

Meet Joy, Pie's foster mama.
She stole my heart too.

Welcome to my blog!

There isn't anything easy for this family right now.

Please check out her blog at Small Town Joy.

Small Town Joy

Okay, I can't tell you what to do.  
But I do pray that my family and friends will be moved to pray and to act.
There are some cute fundraisers going on.  I choose to do the puzzle!
For every $5 donation you can purchase a puzzle piece.
Your name can be written on the puzzle piece
and this puzzle will hang on Pie's bedroom wall.
What a sweet reminder of how many people prayed for her
and how God provided for her to come home to her
forever family.

Please do what you can!

I realize that I don't have a huge audience reading here, 
but that doesn't matter to God.

He'll work his miracles with even a mustard seed.

This is my seed.

Go GOD!!!!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Carpet Face Prayer Days

You could tell it was a Monday.

I did optimistically take some school pictures.

See how hard they work.

Isn't writing time at the park fun?

Let me tell you, these pictures are false advertising.
They don't  honesty convey the thoughts and attitudes of the day.

I need pictures that say this:

"I don't feel good."

"I'm tired."

"Do I have to do this?"

"Can I have a break?"

"Why can't I do it later?"

"Can I skip this part?"

"I'm starving."

"My hand is tired."

"Are we almost done?"

Truth is, I felt the same way. 

"Do I have to do this?"

So there I was today, laying on the bedroom floor at 5:00 pm,
 praying for just a little bit of joy to finish out the day.  
Only God could redeem the mess we had made of the previous 8 hours.

Some days are like that.

Carpet face prayer days.

~ ~ ~

Most days we have family devotions after supper.  
 Let's just stop right there, lest you think too highly of that statement.  
It's rarely as lovely as we would like it to be.

But there is this new thing I love:

 the prayer jar.

Each stick in the jar has a prayer request:

"Grandma and Grandpa"



"More opportunities to show love"

"More faith"

"Manny P."

We sit on the couch and pass the jar, 
each person taking as many sticks as they'd like to pray for.  
Then around the room we go.

I'm not going to lie.
It's a beautiful thing.

Beautiful enough to redeem the mess we had made of this day?

Yes, indeed.

Just one hour after my carpet faced prayer for joy,

Jacob prays in his own words,

"God, give our family love and joy, now, and for the rest of the day."



This was the answer to my prayers.

This was my joy.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

More than Flowers

Okay, Mrs. Garber Martin, you've twisted my arm.

Here's a Money Shot Monday (whatever that means).  

I rarely understand your quirky expressions, but I always love your ideas.

This is just the inspiration I needed.

Thanks, Shannan. You've been inspiring me for a long time.  

Now, if I can just figure out how to link up....

~ ~ ~

The 10 minutes of solitude carved out of my day were spent outside, quickly gathering the remnants of a summer garden gone wild, grabbing hold of the last bits of happy color.  The gusty fall winds blew hard, trying to chase me back inside to the comfort. The chilly air teased me for not wearing a jacket, for holding on to summer too long. Yet something kept me out there.

I was looking for more than flowers. 

I was looking hard for gratitude and for grace,
hoping to make something beautiful out of the noise and mess and brokenness in and around us.  

In a blustery, scraggly patch of zinnias, I found my joy bank filling up--  

filling up with beauty, just like this humble tin can.

Isn't she sweet?

I smile inside every time I walk by.

That 10 minute investment in gratitude will bring me at least a weeks worth of warm fuzzies.

Now that's a good investment.

Linking up with Flower Patch Farmgirl's Money Shot Monday! First link-up ever!!! Woo-hoo!!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Goodbye 40

I'm sorry, Hallmark, but homemade is just way better.

Then again, sometimes store bought is pretty good too.

And I do love a creative birthday present
that I can watch all year long!!!

Granted, I may have to stay up into the wee hours of the night to be creative because I have a new full time job homeschooling these 4 extraordinarily awesome people.

And the icing on the cake?
I'm going to teach kid's art classes in my home!
Going to have to clean up this mess first...

And how about a little portrait work on the side?

I can hardly wait!!!
Goodbye 40. Hello 41.