February 28, 2013

Easy Mod Podge Flower Craft

 Ready for something easy, fun, and ADORABLE?!  We did this craft with a couple of my girls' friends and I couldn't have been more happy with how they turned out.

   blank canvas (we used 12x12)
   mod podge
   scrapbook paper
   acrylic paint
   sponge brush
 I googled "flower petal template" and printed off two different sizes of the same petal to use as my pattern.  We went through our old scrapbook paper and chose some fun, bright colors with small patterns.
Michaels sells 12x12 in packs of 7 for $20.  With my 50% off coupon, it was a CHEAP craft!  Woot woot!
The hardest part was deciding the background color.  Once the girls got over that hurdle, the fun began.  I let them decide how many flowers and what size they wanted their flowers to be.  The only advice I gave them was that the center of the flower didn't necessarily have to be in the center of the canvas.  I think it looks more whimsical to have it off centered.
I love how different each one turned out.  The girls' personalities really fit their art designs.  

 This is the one my daughter made for her new zebra and pink room.  Love.

My son wanted to get in on the painting part, so I let him choose a color and paint my canvas.  He chose Poppy Red.  Double love.
1. Paint canvas with color of your choice.  Personal opinion: the bright colors look best
2. Cut out petals out of regular weight paper (not cardstock)
3. When paint is dry, arrange petals.
4. Using sponge brush, "paint" bottoms of petals with Mod Podge to make sure they adhere as the MP dries.
5. Generously cover entire canvas with Mod Podge.
6. Enjoy your masterpiece!

*I am not affiliated with ModPodge.  Just have a slight obsession!

I'm joining the party at Imparting Grace, 504 Main, Common Ground

February 23, 2013

Waffles, Pickles, and Puppies

Whipped cream and strawberries make me smile.  Some weeks you need a little extra boost for the smile factory.  Our beloved goat, Pickles died. She was our first casualty of farm life.  My daughter took it HARD.  I liked Pickles and I didn't want her to suffer, but I shed tears for my girl whose heart was broken over that sweet goat.  I love that she has a tender heart toward animals.  Life lessons stink sometimes, though.  She's doing fine now, especially since we have a new batch of foster puppies to enjoy. 

We work with a local non-profit rescue that collects adoptable dogs from high-kill shelters and places them up for adoption.  Because puppies cannot be exposed to the other dogs, due to their size and immunization, the rescue program relies on families like us to care for the pups in our homes until they are ready for adoption.   

I love that we are helping some pups in need.  I really love the responsibility that it is teaching my kids.  
 As you can see, they get NO attention around here! ;)

This is our last "quiet" weekend before basketball season kicks into high gear.  I'm relishing the calm.  How about you?
Enjoy your weekend!

February 17, 2013

Easy $4 Craft with a Punch

Remember my "Happy Wall"?  You can learn how to make your own geometric circle art here.  Toady I'm going to show you how I made the two photos at the top of the wall.
Super easy.  Super cheap.  Super fun!

1. Order/print 5x7 black and white photos of your choice, onto regular photo paper.

2. Choose a wooden plaque or board.  I found these wooden plaques at Hobby Lobby for $2.99 each.

 3. Be sure to place a tack under the corners so that you can paint the edges without the wood sticking to your surface.

 4. Choose your favorite color and paint with the grain of the wood.

 5. Center the photo on the wood.  Apply a coat of ModPodge under the photo and over the photo.  It will look murky when you apply it and you might, hypothetically, think "I've ruined it."    Not to worry, it will dry nicely:
Left plaque: wet ModPodge   Right: dry(ish) ModPodge

The color and shape options are limitless.  I am thinking about making a set of these to go in the bonus room.  Guess I'll have to make another trip to Hobby Lobby! ;)

*I am not an affiliate of ModPodge (which I pronounce MODGE PODGE every single time!) or Hobby Lobby, just a fan.

I am linking up with The Dedicated House and Craft-o-Maniac and Coastal Charm and Girl Creative and Imparting Grace

February 13, 2013

Command Central: Laundry/Office/School Room

 Yesterday I revealed our laundry room and ended the post with a little teaser.  We designed this room of our house to be command central.  In our last house, the laundry room was right next to the school room and it worked out great.  I loved being within arm's reach of being able to switch the laundry loads between math and history.  It really helped me stay on top of the laundry issue.

So we created this space with that concept in mind.  Since we spend so much time in this room, we don't let the piles of laundry to overtake us.  Does it get messy?  Of course!  We live life in here!
This little corner is where we do school.  Two of my three kids prefer to do it in here.  One of my girls prefers her room, and I'm okay with that.  We all have different learning styles and preferences!  The table is our previous kitchen table with the middle leaf removed.  Some days the chairs match, other days, the kids bring in whatever they want to sit on.  Can't sweat the small stuff.  I made the bunting on the windows for a barn party and realized that it would be a fun addition to the Ikea $4.99 sheers.

I found this fun printable here.  The colors were perfect for our room.  I am sure it is just the beginning for this little corner, but I thought it was a good place to start ... God's word!  Ha!

The other part of the room is MY space.  I love my little desk nook.  It's where I communicate with you, write, create lesson plans, eat dark chocolate and edit photographs.   

We added this closet to the plan while we were in the framing stage.  Best decision ever.  It holds all the school/art/sewing supplies.

 The color of the walls is Shagreen by Sherwin Williams SW 6422.  It is a soft, happy green.
I'm joining these great parties:
Creative Cain Cabin, Wow Us Wednesday, Elizabeth & Co., The Ironstone Nest, Imparting Grace

February 12, 2013

Laundry Room Reveal

 I don't know about you, but my laundry room in our last house became the Pit of Despair; the dumping ground for whatever.  Since we were starting fresh, I decided to really limit what would take up space in our laundry area.  When my husband built the shelves, I knew I wanted them to be organized and functional.  By making it cute, helps me want to keep it clean.

This is where we do life, so why not make it a beautiful, functional space?  

When my baskets are labeled, they tend to get used for that specific function, rather than a catch-all.  So we have a basket -a very large basket- for lost socks and another for rags.  I found that it helps having the rags right above the laundry, so that they don't make it into the kitchen drawer with the good cloths.  
A candy jar is just the right shape to hold my homemade laundry detergent.

 While the kids and I were skiing last week, my personal handy man created this drying rack for me.  I love that it doesn't take up floor space.  Items can be draped on the rungs; or, since he used closet bars to create the rungs, items can be hung from hangers to dry. We use the space below to sort our loads by color.

 I used to HATE laundry.  But I have found that by staying on top of it (not letting it sneak up and overwhelm me every.single.week) and by having an organized space, it really isn't the bane of my existence.  I just had to come to terms with the fact that it IS a daily chore.

I have one more little secret about this laundry room... it shares space with another important function of our home.  More about that next time!  ;)

Paint- Sherwin Williams Shagreen SW 6422
Candy jar - Walmart

I'm linking up with Knick of Time, Coastal Charm, Home Stories AtoZ, Creative Cain Cabin, Wow Us Wednesday, Elizabeth & Co., The Ironstone Nest, Imparting Grace

February 8, 2013

Friday Favorites

 I love mugs.  Not just any mug, but pretty, functional mugs.  My mother-in-law gave me a pair of these a few years ago and I use them every week.  Big enough to hold a "large" Keurig cup, pretty enough to make me smile.  Plus, they say Starbucks on the bottom, so some mornings I imagine I am in a little bistro in Germany sipping java.

Do you belong to Costco?  If so, these trash bags are da bomb.  Is that phrase out?  I'm sure it's not cool anymore.  But anyways, they are rad.  Ok maybe they're not ALL THAT, but I like them.  They don't break.  They fit my tall trash can and they are a GREAT price.  Plus, there are 200 in a box so I'm not constantly buying more bags.

 My husband surprised me at Christmas with an iPad.  Totally surprised.  He said, "I didn't get you a cover for it because I knew you'd want a cute one."  That man knows me so well.  All of the iPad covers in the local stores were $39+.  Seriously.  I just want a cute one that is functional.  Kinda like my mugs.  I found this one online for $16.  I love it a hundred different ways.
Speaking of love.  My sweet man noticed my excitement over these paper goods from Target.  I found this gift bag on my front seat, filled with happiness (and the sweetest love note) a few days later.  I am truly blessed to be his wife.

 When the sonic facial cleaners first came out, I might have scoffed, mostly because of the price.  But I have a dear friend that got one for Christmas (albeit hers was much better quality than the store brand knock off I got) and she sung its praises over a cup of coffee one evening.  So I put it on my "I'd like to try it" list.  Do you have one of those?   I came across this one, it was a good price, plus I had a crazy coupon, so I gave it a try.
I could tell a huge difference in the feel of my skin after the first use!

For my birthday, my parents gave me some cash for a new pair of cowgirl boots.  After trying on a bazillion pairs, I couldn't find the perfect ones.  So, with their blessing, I split the money between a fun pair of winter boots and these:
I needed something to wear with my skinny jeans that would be more casual than ballet flats.  Bringing back the Chucks! ;)

 I used the last of my birthday money to get a new purse and wallet.  I really NEEDED a wallet but I didn't want to get a new one, because my old one was like a second skin to me.  Everything fit so well, but it was beginning to look like my grandmother's wallet: cracked and 100 years old.  She loved hers for so long, she held it together by a rubber band. Isn't that adorable? Target has a special right now, on purses and wallets: by one get one 1/2 off.  I have admired this hobo bag for awhile, but there were so many great colors to choose from.  I had my girls make the final decision for me.  They chose well!

 Last but not least, this little rug makes me smile.  I found it at the most unexpected place: Dollar General.  Can you believe that?  My girls discovered it when we were buying paper towels.  It's a great little pop of color below my kitchen sink... and machine washable!
Happy Friday!

February 6, 2013

We Took A Break

I love a road trip.
I love any kind of trip, actually.

One of the benefits of homeschooling is that we don't have to take the MLK vacay day.  We wait until the crowds are back in school and then took our winter break.
It turned out to be much more of an adventure than we had planned.  We rolled into the mountains with the clouds that brought flash flooding.  It is a surreal feeling to discuss with your daughter the plan of action should our car begin to float away.

The flooding rain gave way to a beautiful snowfall in the middle of the night.  I awoke to a snow-covered sunrise the next morning:

Two of the kids and I headed to the ski slopes.  I was a little nervous because the last time I went skiing the kid to adult ratio was the opposite.  They were troopers and did fantastic.
The closer we got to the slopes, the heavier the snow began to fall.
By the time we got 489 layers on and geared up, it was a -2 wind chill factor.
 Notice the blizzard behind me.  Even with the natural snow coming down, they were still blowing man-made snow.

Other than a handful of other idiots weather braving souls, we had the slopes to ourselves.
 By mid afternoon, I was beginning to worry about the roads we would be facing on the way home.  
By mid afternoon, I was beginning to worry about the roads we would be facing on the way home.  If the snow build-up on my hat was any indication, we were in trouble!   Because, you see, I DO NOT drive in snow.  Ever.  Period.  Amen.

I guess it's never to late to learn.  This was the view from the passenger seat, taken by my daughter:

The next day, it was a balmy 14 degrees when the kids decided to go sledding.  I LOVE snow so I joined right in.  It truly was THE BEST SLEDDING we've ever experienced.
 I sent my husband this picture and he said they looked like tic tacs against the giant hills.  ;)
My kids sent me down the steepest hill on my 1st run.  When I got to the bottom, my son yelled, "You're the best mom EVERRRR!!!"
Totally worth all the bruises!

The rest of our break was filled with card games with Mimi

And games with views:

I even worked on a puzzle... guilt free.  I never work on puzzles at home because I can't leave them alone until they are done, which equals family neglect.  Anyone know what I mean?

So I'm back in the saddle and all that jazz.  How was your week?