Linen Matted Photos

I love the look of these framed pictures. I especially like the look of the linen mattes around the pictures. I came across these on Pinterest the other day and was inspired to make something like this myself.I think these are really pretty linen matted photos.I used two large Ikea frames I used the same spray paint I used for the hamper basket makeover project. It is Rust-Oleum gloss protective French Roast.I sprayed the frames with 2 coats and allowed them to dry about 24 hours.Using poster board, the 8x10 photo, and a tape measure I created a rectangle opening slightly smaller than the size of the photo.I cut the opening out with a razor blade.As you can see above, I cut drop cloth (a material I use often because it looks similar to linen) around the cut poster board.I used glue stick and some masking tape to tape the drop cloth down on the back of the matte.Here is the finished product.They actually came out a lot better than they look and were very easy to do.Something else you could try is to use the same drop cloth material for the matte but make the pictures black and white rather than sepia and paint the frames black.I really like the way they came out. Like I said, they look better in person than in these photos. … [Read more...]

Allen’s Final Chapter

This is part 3 of an inspirational story written by Sophia's Dad. You can read part 1 here and part 2 here. Gripping the edges of the dentist’s chair while the drilling commenced and waiting for the assistant to suck out the saliva in my mouth before I aspirate into my lungs, I feel my phone vibrate in my pocket.  It’s 5:35pm on Tuesday.  Given a brief moment of reprieve from the seemingly endless drilling, scraping and oh yeah; readjusting that dam device that keeps your mouth cranked open almost to the point of permanently creating a smile like the Joker from Batman I peak at my cell.  “Alan just passed away five minutes ago.” His estranged father at his bedside, his fiancé driving home from work having just left the Care Center (which I admitted Allen to just a week prior) a few hours earlier. “He sat on the edge of the bed,” straining to readjust himself to get his cancer filled lungs to cooperate as best as possible. He simply said, “I can’t hold on any longer, I’m ready to go.”  His head dipped down on his chest. There were a few feeble attempts to fill his lungs with precious oxygen and he was gone.  He left this world with a whimper, not a bang. To some, Allen’s story was a tragic story with all the makings of a “tear jerker” you might see on The Lifetime channel.  For others, it marked the end of a long and hard battle with the ‘The Big C’. As I read the text while allowing the dentist to have his way with my teeth despite my silent protest, a … [Read more...]

All You Need Is Love Sign

I haven't gotten this project right yet but I'm going to share it with you guys anyway. I really like this frame. It suits the rustic decor that goes with living in the mountains. Originally, my mom made this sign for our wedding we had here in Mammoth. She stenciled the letters of our names on a piece burlap, painted the letters white and framed it. After the wedding, I decided I wanted to stencil "all you need is love" on drop cloth and use the frame. Rather than using stencils, I printed out my own letters using Georgia font (size 400). I was going to trace them on the drop cloth and paint the letters the same way I did the monogrammed pillows I made recently. My husband thought that sounded like too much work and suggested he spray paint the letters I had printed then glue them on the drop cloth. He talked me into and it ended up looking pretty good. This is before I glued the letters down. I wasn't crazy about the drop cloth. It was too light in contrast with the color of the frame. I don't know, I just didn't like it. So I pulled all the letters off the drop cloth, stapled a piece of burlap over the board and glued the letters back on. I know it sounds a little crazy but I do like the burlap better. And now, I'm still not in love with it! I like it, but I think it would look better if the letters were painted on! I'll give it a few days to see if I really like it. I may have to sneak a quick paint job in without my husband seeing (I don't want to hurt his … [Read more...]

Hamper Basket Makeover

I like having a good project to work on- something to paint or re cover is always fun. I enjoy looking around thrift stores for something I can re do. This may seem weird to some people but it is sort of therapeutic for me and gratifying to see the transformation. When I spotted this old hamper at a thrift store, I knew it would be fun and easy to re do. Actually, if I had the right style of house, this would have been a cool vintage piece to fix up. I would have re painted it the same yellow and cleaned it up a bit. My house is not ecletic at all though. It wouldn't work in our house as a vintage piece.  All I needed to do with this was wash it off with a hose and give it two coats of spray paint. I used Rust-Oleum gloss protective French Roast.Once the paint was all dry (I gave it 24 hours), I unscrewed the top and used a staple gun to cover it with my favorite material- drop cloth! I say favorite, because I've done a bunch of projects using drop cloth you can find here. I like it because it is sturdy and it looks like linen.Here is how it looked once it was painted and the top was covered. It needed something extra, so I trimmed the lid with smooth nickel furniture nails. I think it gave it the finishing touch it needed. Before and After Total Cost- $20 Hamper- $5 Spray Paint & Furniture Nails- $15This was so simple to do and came out pretty good. What do you think? … [Read more...]

Summertime Pics

As I scroll through the dozens of photos I've taken of Sophia in just the last month, I can't help but feel overwhelmed with love and happiness. Sometimes I think back to the 72 hours it took to bring her into this world and I can barely even remember all the pain I went through because that finite amount of suffering seems so utterly insignificant in comparison to the infinite amount of joy and value she has brought into our lives. So it's no wonder why I take so many pictures of her. I can't help but want to capture the so many great moments of her life. With mobile phone photography it's easy to capture every waking (and non waking) moment of her life. I'm not sure if this is such a good thing. I hadn't thought about how this may affect her until now. As she gets older, she may act differently when she knows the camera is there. This may make her self-aware which could be a bad thing because a lack of self awareness is what makes children so precious and innocent. This is something for me to think about. Do you take a lot of pictures of your children? What are your thoughts on this? Anyway, as I glance over at my little toe headed daughter, her ink blue eyes catch mine and I can barely suppress a smile and think, I can't imagine my life without her and I'm so grateful I've had the opportunity to capture so many great moments of her life that I will someday get to share with her. We had a great time at Timmy's First Birthday. She wasn't happy with me trying to put a … [Read more...]

Embroidered Pillow

I must have a thing for pillows and monograms. A couple weeks ago I made pillows with painted monograms on them you can find here and the other day I embroidered a monogram on another pillow. I do like pillows. They are an easy way to give a couch, bed, or chair a finishing touch. It's also an easy way to add color and style to a room. I like monograms because they personalize a space and I think it makes a nice gift to give someone something personalized with a monogram. First, I traced a circular bowl (the size I wanted the monogram and design to be) onto a solid colored linen pillow cover. Next, I penciled the design and monogram onto the pillow cover. Last, I embroidered over the penciled design. Embroidery is not hard. If you don't know how, I found a tutorial on Pinterest you can go to here. Turned out pretty good. What do you think?   … [Read more...]

Sea Shell Wreath

This is another simple DIY project. I have a large collection of shells from when I lived at the beach that I thought I would use to make  sea shell wreaths. I bought a couple of these wreaths at the dollar tree and simply hot glued shells to it. I made one for my mom and one for a friend. They both live at the beach so sea shell wreaths will be appropriate for their homes. All you need are shells, a wreath, and hot glue. I also used sea glass. You can buy shells at a craft store if you don't live near the beach or have a collection. This is how the first one came out. I only put the shells on the face of the wreath, not on the inside or outside. This is the second wreath I made. I put a few more shells around the outside and inside of the wreath. I like the way this one came out. You can't mess these up. First, I glued shells all over the wreath. Then I went back and filled in the open spaces with smaller shells and sea glass. It's not perfect which is what I like. And each one you make is unique. There you go- a simple sea shell wreath you can make for yourself or a friend. It's very easy! … [Read more...]

Craft Organization Inspiration

I wish I had the before picture of this closet but since I don't, you can imagine what it would look like. Basically it was  a standard closet with a hanging bar for clothes across the top. We built in shelves and table space to create a place to organize craft supplies. Baskets are hung on the inside of the doors to store supplies. A decorative wire rack for magazines, letters, and paper is hung on the other door. We're going to put cork on the inside of the doors to pin pictures up on. Plastic containers hold spools of ribbon, thread, buttons, stamps, and miscellaneous craft items. Boxes of stationary and more baskets for storage. More plastic containers for pens and other supplies. If you don't have an extra room for craft supplies, a closet is a good option. In a small area you can create many places to store your supplies.   Having a specific place where all your craft items are organized makes it fun to do projects. At least for me this is the case. If you don't have a place yet, maybe this will give you a little inspiration. … [Read more...]

Helpful Parenting Article: Talking to Toddlers

I recently read an article by Janet Lansbury, titled Talking to Toddlers- 4 Secrets That Bring You Closer  that was helpful and informative. The article discusses 4 ways to communicate with your toddler to alleviate frustration and build trust. The first secret she points out is to talk normal. Don't talk baby talk to your toddler. Speak slowly and in shorter sentences. The second secret she discusses is to turn 'no' into 'yes'. An example, "I want you to sit on my lap" rather than, "Don't bounce on me." She explains that this may not always work but it is better than responding with no and don't all the time. Children appreciate positive instruction. It makes them more likely to respond with compliance and makes them feel more respected. The third secret is to give the toddler real choices. Rather than asking your toddler what they want to wear, ask them if they would like to wear the pink dress or the white dress. Give them two choices and let them decide between the two. Asking them a broad question like what do you want to wear is too overwhelming. Her final secret is to first, acknowledge. She explains that acknowledging your toddler's point of view can be calming. Toddlers get frustrated when they can't communicate what they want or need, and when you acknowledge their point of view it helps them feel that they are being understood. Landsbury points out,"That when a toddler feels understood, she senses the empathy behind our limits and corrections. She … [Read more...]

July 4th 2013

Dinner at Friends With the girls and babies Sophia and Timmy Sophia loved this little girl Sarah she met at the party. Just a few pics of our little angel Watching the parade earlier in the day. She wasn't happy- too hot and it was nap time. We had a great fourth of July. Hope you all made some great memories and enjoyed your day as much as we did.   … [Read more...]