Saturday, May 23, 2015

No Zombie-Style Faith

Last year we attended a Family Strong Bonds event thru the Army, using The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Families as the curriculum. Habit Two encouraged families to "begin with the end in mind --  establish values and a Family Mission Statement." (paraphrased) 

This verse is our Family Mission Statement. It helps us choose how to spend our time, money, energy, how we relate to our friends and family, etc. Personally, I think Christians over use "I'll pray for you," and then that's it. 

Prayer is great, don't get me wrong, there is power in prayer, but it is no magic wand. 
James 2:14-26 encourages showing your faith thru your deeds. 
In fact, it says, faith without deeds is dead. 

No zombie-Style Faith! 
looking alive but really dead

The technique for creating this picture was found on pinterest for use on a mirror. Check it out here: 

Since I don't have a cricut or the patience to cut out every.single.letter, I used leftover scrapbook letters and removable wall stickers. 

Seriously, I LOVE every turquoise hue, so it was necessary to use multiple shades of it. lol

I rather like the streaked look. 

I tried not to load my brush up to prevent paint from leaking under the letters. 


As you can see, some letters bubbled up and the paint leaked under. Oops. 

Not sure if this could have been avoided had I used the contact paper that was suggested. 

Or maybe if I'd run a hair dryer over the words first to better secure the adhesive. 


This was quickly fixed with the white sharpie marker. White out was the back up plan. 

Do you have a family mission statement? 
Or a family mantra? 

A Penny for your Thoughts...or a Tray full!

Check out the different backings from different years ~~ love~~. 
The older one's went into the bottom corner of the penny tray. 

covered in polycrylic

May 23rd is National Lucky Penny Day, btw. Never heard of this prior to stumbling across a Pinterest post on it. Now, I already had these two projects in the works prior to finding out that there was a lucky penny day but had stalled on them. I'm notorious for littering our basement with half completed projects. So, National Lucky Penny Day became Just-Finish-the-Penny-Projects-by-this-Day day. It was a lot of gluing while watching TV, but they are done! ( is short some sealant).

Penny Tray: Dine in or Lap Top Friendly

Balancing pillows on my legs while working on my lap top in bed isn't very effective. A bit too wobbly. This tray was a $2 garage sale score and the inspiration came from Domestically Speaking, click here to see her beautiful version.

I accidentally deleted some of the "during" photos, but here is what I could find. For a better idea of how I "painted" the oak see the tutorial at Domestically Speaking.

The tacky glue worked about 99% of the time, a couple pennies needed regluing...but maybe they didn't get enough glue to begin maybe not the glue's fault.

Project is still being sealed with polycrylic. As you can imagine, it will take several layers to fill up the spaces between the pennies.

BUT, in the meantime, it is functional.

breakfast in bed? 

and after breakfast, no need to get out of bed to blog!

Garden Gazing Ball

I have absolutely no idea why gazing balls exist. 

What is their purpose?

Is it just because they are cute? 

Scare bugs away? 

Or attract bugs? 

Or something to look at in the dreary winter?

Whatever the reason, our garden now has one. 

Thank you Dollar Tree for the small candle votive. All the pennies, and I do mean ALL the pennies
, on this project have the exact same side facing up. Its the newer design for penny backs. After finding a handful of uniquely old ones while gluing pennies on the tray, I kinda became obsessed with that was on the back of the penny. A huge benefit of going with the newer pennies is the shine, no cleaning required.

Since this wasn't going to get sealed, I went with a tougher glue, generously applied. So far no pennies have fallen off. The painters tape helped hold sections in place while the glue set.  

 just noticed my foot photo-bombed...and you can't even see the cute pedi! sheesh

I look forward to seeing the copper age and weather over this next round of seasons. 

Copper and blue pair well. :)

On an entirely different note: the hydrangea above, in the large teapot, nearly lost a battle with a hail storm, followed by snow, followed by days and days and days and days of rain and gloom (weird weather for this time of year). 

BUT, this morning I noticed some tender new leaves bravely sprouting. 

~fingers crossed that the sun stays out and the hydrangea bounces back~
hmmmm, maybe a lucky penny nearby will help? ha ha 

Well, happy Lucky Penny Day. (Whatever that means.)

P.S. Here is that cute pedi that the camera didn't capture. I NEVER get my toes done. It was a mother's day present with my little seven year old princess (who giggled thru the salt scrub ~precious~). While the paint won't last, at least the picture, and more importantly, the memory, will. :)

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Mad Hatter Tea Party -- The Beginning

For Teacher Appreciation week I set up a tea table in the teacher's lounge. It was a fun idea to pull together. Pinterest has sooooooooo many ideas. (Check out my Mad Hatter Tea Party board here.) Mostly I took the ideas for supplies I already had on hand. Still enjoy the challenge of repurposing and reusing. 

Here is the end result: (although, I totally look forward to expanding on this tea is garage sale season after all!

some photos were taken at the school, others were taken in my home

Dollar Store roses painted with nail polish

The sign post is an old chair leg rescued from a dumpster. It was scrubbed, sanded, and disinfected before being painted. 

Hobby Lobby had a paper crafting blowout sale recently so I splurged and bought some fun alphabet & number scrap booking stickers.

 I tried to make a path on the base but ran out of time to finish it. 

finished with fabric stiffener

  The two-sided clock is one of my favorite pieces for the tea party. Painted toothpicks were added for the "hands."

My late Grandma embroidered this tea towel...rather fitting for the theme. The rabbits are also from Hobby Lobby in the Easter clearance section. 

All the doilies and the tea towels were embroidered by my late Grandma. These were passed on to me by my aunt. Adds a sweet touch and some pretty colors.

Old loose leaf tea boxes served as utensil caddies. Eventually I would like to find enough old/vintage style silverware (mismatched a must) to replace the plastic. 

 Mismatched cups & saucers from a local thrift store. This is also how I do my regular dishes, mismatched finds. Who cares if one breaks? Easily replaced. 

The keys are from the $ bins at Michaels. 

I had so much fun putting the table together that I was thinking of hosting my own tea party at home. My sweet little girl and I could host a Mad Hatters Mommy & Me Tea. 

Off to scour garage sales and thrift store shelves to add to the madness! 

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Embrace the Fails

All you got to do is fail better.
Click Here for Source
My two oldest are at an age where there are several new challenges in their lives (like school and math) that bring with them expectations that seem out of reach. Like many kids, they get nervous and try to avoid trying by saying, "I can't do it!" or "Its too hard!"

My response: 
I'd rather you try and make a mistake than not try at all. 

One of my goal's as a parent is to raise kids who are willing to take risks. And with that comes the attitude to embrace the fail, laugh if its funny, and learn from it.

In that spirit, here are two of my recent crafting fails and the lessons learned:

1. Foot Mittens
My old slippers had holes worn all the way thru them. Rather than buy a new pair I thought I'd combine eye-balling a Pinterest design + using my old slipper as a pattern + my foot for measurement to hopefully = awesome slippers that I could brag about making.

HAHAHAHAHHAHAAHAAAA Maybe if I hadn't nursed a beer while running the sewing machine it would have turned out cuter. The result was closer to a mitten design and the side was all floppy letting in the cold air. I gave up and bought a pair at the local thrift store. No bragging rights but my feet are warm.

Lessons learned:
1. do not drink and sew
2. do not rely on your foot as a measurement tool, actually use a measuring tape
3. printing out a pattern isn't a bad idea after all

2. Mod Podge "eraser"
Turns out that using the wrong Mod Podge actually creates the opposite reaction: "erasing" instead of sealing. 

Do it right the first time ! Quote
In an effort to speed up a tray makeover, I grabbed a sealer that was not intended for this use. Mod Podge Outdoor is great if you are using it for something outdoor. It's probably even more effective if you layer it on slowly instead of dumping it on thickly, like I did. 

Is it possible to label this a double fail for misusing the wrong product? lol 
A clear example of "two wrongs don't make a right." 

The incorrectly used Mod Podge bubbled up after drying. As I picked at it, it lifted off in pieces taking the acrylic paint with it. BUUUUUUUUUUUT, not ALL the sealer came off, so this tray is a hot mess. Eventually I'll strip it and start over. Its been a year since the above photo was maybe I'll get to it soon? 

If only I'd heeded the above quote.~sigh~

Lessons learned: 
1. Take the time to do it right the first time!
2. Not all sealers are created equal.

Thomas Edison's quote is my favorite (bottom right).
People Who Found Success Despite Failures
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I'd love to hear about your fails and lessons learned.