Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Good Read: Leaving

I just finished another great book by New York Times best selling author Karen Kingsbury. You know she is my favorite author and yet again she has left me wanting more.
Leaving is the first book of The Bailey Flanigan series. Bailey is a character who appeared in Kingsbury's Above the Line series. There are also members of the Baxter Family in Leaving, the Baxter's are originally from the Redemption series but are such an awesome family they've made their way into series after series.
Leaving is a great read, centered so much around Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Such an awesome reminder. I encourage all of you to read Karen Kingsbury's books. Please let me know if you and what you think of her reading.


Sunday, March 27, 2011

A Productive Saturday

My little chicks started spring break last Thursday and due to outstanding parent teacher conferences, no one is grounded so we decided to be productive this weekend. Saturday morning about 9:30 Tall Man went one way with our three little chicks and I went another way. My family headed to Lowe's to their Build and Grow Clinic for kids.
The days project was a Fortune Teller and from what I understand my little chicks did almost their whole project by themselves. The littlest one obviously needed some help from Daddy but did all her hammering on her own, getting her finger only once.
From what my Tall Man said the people at Lowe's were incredibly kind and helpful with all the kiddos. The little chicks left with aprons, safety goggles, a patch for completing their project and a fancy little fortune teller. They are so excited to go back and build something else in a couple of weeks.
I said I went in another direction Saturday morning. I picked up my sister and we headed to a Stampin' Up camp with my Dad's girlfriend, Sue. I had never been to a stamp camp so I was pretty excited. When I was a little girl Sue always had the coolest stamping stuff and she was very nice, letting my sister and I use all of her supplies when we visited on the weekends.
I was so into my stamping I didn't take any pictures while we were actually stamping. But I set up all my cards when I got home and snapped a few pictures to share with you.
There are some Thinking of You cards...
And birthday cards...
And a gift set of four different cards...
Here they are all together...
I was really intimidated by this card when I saw the example. I didn't know how to pull of the flower from squares thing. It was SO easy! I couldn't believe it.
This card is one of my favorites and my sister won the grand prize for the day, the Big Shot! It's the tool used to make the cards have that embossed pattern. Lucky girl! I told her she has to share with me though. =o)
Do you make your own cards? Or stamp other crafts? I thought this event was so fun I can't wait for the next one!!


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Do You Smell That?

Kind of a weird title for a blog post, I must admit. But that's what I've been saying for the past few days. One of these furry lovelies...
...had an accident or three in a corner of our living room! I am very sensitive to smells and noticed a rather funky smell in our downstairs late last week. Over the weekend the Tall Man and I cleaned our kitchen, dining room, powder room, living room, our whole main floor. But there was still a funk goin on.
Then Monday morning I was looking for something in a toy bench for our littlest chick and as I moved a basket of baby toys for my niece I smelled it. If you have animals you know what I'm talking about. That absolutely disgusting smell of animal urine. YUCK! YUCK! YUCK!
My first thought was "Now we have to get hard floors. Darn it anyway." However new flooring isn't exactly in the budget right now so instead I have cleaned the carpet twice with a Bissel carpet cleaner and yesterday picked up some Nature's Miracle from PETCO. I have drenched the carpet two times with this stuff and it seems to be getting better. The smell isn't as obvious and I've been told it may take a few applications, especially because I had already used a carpet cleaner solution on the spot. So we'll see. My plan of attack as of right now is to pull the carpet up in that corner, cut out the pad, paint Kilz on the concrete, drench the carpet in Nature's Miracle again and put in new carpet pad. Sounds like quite the chore when I'd rather be making a spring wreath for the front door or crafting up something cute for Easter. But in the words of my Tall Man, "I feel a blog post coming."


Monday, March 21, 2011

Magnetic Message Board

If you're a parent you know how hard it is to find a good babysitter. One you can trust to not only feed your kiddos a good dinner but to prepare it with out burning the house down. One who won't be on the phone with a boy the whole time, who genuinely enjoys spending time with your children. We went years only having a couple family members watch our little chicks. Which meant our only opportunity to go out was on a Saturday night.
About a year ago we were introduced to young girl named Jena, she was great from the beginning. Her family attends our church, she actually is a helper in our littlest chicks class, our oldest chick knows Jena's mom because she works at the elementary school, and her mom ended up playing on our softball team last summer. Perfect!
Jena had a birthday last week and we wanted to be sure she knew we didn't forget. If we had the means I would have loved to wrap whatever the coolest present is for a 16 year old {most likely some car keys.} That's a little out of our "gift price range" so we decided to make her something fun for her room.
I started with a metal cow sign from the Dollar Tree, doesn't that just scream 16 year old girl?!?! My little chicks did a little undercover work to find out the colors of Jena's room so we could pick coordinating scrapbook paper to cover the sign & make magnets.
I traced the cow sign on the back of a piece of scrapbook paper. Then using a little Mod Podge wrapped it like a gift to cover the front of the sign. I let that dry for about twenty minutes to avoid any bubbles.
Next I used the pink and white polka dot paper for the mini clothes pins. I just traced them on the paper and cut it to size, then applied the paper with Mod Podge. I didn't make perfect cuts to I sanded the edges down, I like this look better anyway. For the life of me I could not find my little button magnets so I ended up cutting little pieces from a magnet roll to fit the back of the clothes pins.
I used my Cricut to cut a fun cupcake and our super sitter's name.
Lastly, I drilled a couple holes at the top of the sign and pulled a thick magenta ribbon through so Jena can hang it in her room. Each little chick picked out a coordinating nail polish and our gift was ready for giving.
It's not a car but we think it's pretty cute and hope she likes it.


Linking to: Craft-O-Maniac

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Well, it's happened again. Last night before bed the Tall Man and I set leprechaun traps with our three little chicks. But this morning the traps had triggered but no leprechaun's inside. Not only had they escaped our traps, they left their little green footprints all over our walls. They turned our milk green. They turned the toilet water green. They rearranged our furniture, chairs on the stairs, bar stools on the counter. Complete leprechaun craziness!
They were nice enough however to leave each little chick and the Tall Man their own pot of gold.
I found these itty bitty terra cotta pots at the Dollar Tree {3 for $1.} Filled them with Rolo's and mini Reese's Peanut Butter cups and made a cute little label with my Cricut and paisley heart stamp.
After the furniture was returned to it's rightful place I slipped a green cookie or two into my chicks lunch boxes.
Pinned a large green yoyo on my littlest chick's shirt and made a couple hair ties out of the small ones.
Here are my little chicks ready for school, completely pinch proof!
And of course the silly face shot. I love them!

Happy St. Patrick's Day friends!


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Luck Bottle

I didn't want to go overboard for St. Patrick's Day but I did want to have a little bit o' green here and there. My "luck bottle" was really quick and easy to put together. It was also FREE!! You can't beat quick, easy and free!
I started with an empty, cleaned out sparkling grape juice bottle, burlap, green ribbon, Scrabble tiles, a button and some hot glue to put it all together. First I cut the burlap into a two inch strip and hot glued it on.
Next I cut a piece of green ribbon and hot glued it on over the burlap. I glued a green button on the back where the ribbon ends meet up. I thought it looked a little nicer than stringy ribbon ends.
I picked through my Scrabble tiles and found the letter L-U-C-K but there was no Y. So I was forced to improvise and drew my own little clover on a blank tile. I hot glued those on and was done.
Forgive the bad photo but here is my final product. I stacked a couple green books, added my book page bottle with a few Dollar Tree shamrocks and that was that.


Linking to: Someday Crafts

Monday, March 14, 2011

Happy Anniversary Tall Man

Today the Tall Man and I celebrate eight years of marriage. It has been an awesome journey for us. This last weekend was no exception. My amazing Tall Man planned a night out to remember. First he arranged for our little chicks to spend the night with their Grandma and Aunt. After our girls headed out on their own adventure we got ready and went down to one of the local lakes and snapped a few pictures.
The sun started to go down and we decided to get going on our date night. This wasn't any date night. My Tall Man planned EVERYTHING on his own. It was all a surprise to me! We walked around some of our favorite stores (The Apple Store, Restoration Hardware and Pottery Barn.) After wiping the drool from our chins it was 7 o'clock and time for dinner. Not only did he make dinner reservations for us but he reserved The Lovers Lane at The Melting Pot. We had our own private room with a table for two covered in rose petals. There was champagne, wine, music and lots of fondue! Yum!
Here we are at out table. It was the coolest thing, on the wall behind us was a verse from Song of Solomon "I have found the one whom my soul loves." Perfect.
Some how we managed to inhale our first and second courses (appetizer and salad) before taking any pictures of the food. This is our main course. There was duck, NY strip, Fillet Mignon, Ratatouille and goat cheese ravioli and shrimp. Oh and a bowl of potatoes, broccoli, carrots and mushrooms. And I can't forget the seven dipping sauces!
For dessert we ordered the Yin Yang fondue. A perfect mix of dark and white chocolate with strawberries, marshmallows, pound cake, brownies, bananas, rice krispie treats and cheese cake.
It was an amazing evening spent just me and my Tall Man. I appreciate and love him more than he'll ever know. I look forward to spending all eternity by his side. Happy anniversary Tall Man!


Friday, March 11, 2011

Pots of Gold

Last week I showed you a few of my favorite finds in blog land. Remember the little pots of gold byThe Crafting Chicks? I told you not to be surprised if you saw them again. However, I did decide to put my own twist on my little pots of gold.
I started at the Dollar Tree, that's where many great crafts start. Unfortunately this one did not start there. I couldn't find the three pack of little white buckets so I continued searching elsewhere. I go to Michael's almost every Monday morning. I don't always buy something, it's a treat just to walk through the store with no interruptions. At Michael's I found little terra cotta pots (I believe they're the 3 inch size.) I decided with a coat of black paint, these would be perfect for what I had in mind.
I bought three of the pots, one for each of my little chicks teachers. I didn't put a water sealer on the pots because they're going to hold "gold" not plants, I just used a small foam brush and applied black acrylic paint.
Next was the hard part. Not like physically hard, like "Oh my gosh that's a lot of yummy chocolate and I can't eat it!" hard.
You've probably seen a lot of St. Patty's treats using Rolo's. I wanted to add a little more so I picked up a bag of Hershey's Nuggets. These are SO good. The perfect combination of chocolate, almonds and toffee. YUM!
I poured all the candy out, mixed it up and filled the pots.
I was going to use the simple clear treat bags to put the pots in but wasn't sure I'd get the right size. I didn't want to buy a pack of bags, get them home and have them not fit. That kind of thing is really frustrating to me. I decided to buy a roll or Transparent Packaging Wrap. It cost less than a pack of 25 treat bags and I used my 40% off coupon, so it was just about $2. Now I have enough wrap to get me by for quite a while.
If you've ever used a roll of this wrap you know it's not so fun to cut. I tried cutting it with plain old scissors and it kept ripping, so I used a pair of craft scissors with the jagged edge (like pinking shears.) This worked so much better. I tried to cut squares, placed a pot in the center and gathered the wrap at the top. Did that make sense? You'll get it when you see the picture. Next I took a little green and white polka dot ribbon and tied a bow.
Here is my finished product. Three pots of gold with Crafting Chicks downloadable label, "I'm LUCKY to have YOU as my teacher."
And a close up.
Here they are from the back, you can see all the yummy gold.
I am SO happy with the way these turned out. I can't wait for the little chicks to take them to school next week!


Wednesday, March 9, 2011


If you have a little one in kindergarten or teach K-2 yourself, you know what I mean by R.O.Y.G.B.I.V.. Don't worry about saying each letter, it's pronounced Roy G Biv. My middle chick told me what this was when she was in kindergarten.
This acronym stands for:
The month of March is all about little green men, four leaf clovers, pretty rainbows and a pot of gold. I have been working on everything green and pots of gold (I'll share those with you another day) so I decided to tackle that colorful rainbow.
In my office I have a drawer full of picture frames so I went searching for a white frame. I found a real simple 5x7 wooden frame that would work perfectly. Then I cut a piece of white card stock to fit the frame. Next I pulled out my jar of buttons and poured them onto my craft table.
After I had my 5x7 paper and variety of buttons I started designing my rainbow. I tried a vertical layout and then horizontal. Once I decided on a horizontal layout I warmed up the ol' glue gun and got to work gluing each button into place.
I didn't have enough room or buttons to represent all of Roy G Biv. So I let Mr. Biv go by Roy G B.. Last names can be so formal sometimes.
After all my buttons were glued in place and the hot glue strings were removed I wrote "Lucky..." in the bottom corner.
Doesn't it make you mad when you have a vision of a craft in your head, then you add your own handwriting to it and it's just not like what you imagined? Maybe it's just me, but I don't think so. I'm not thrilled with my handwriting but at least I didn't misspell anything, right?
I think I'll put this in our half bath. There isn't any natural light in that room, maybe this will brighten it up a bit.

Monday, March 7, 2011

St. Patrick's Day Subway Art

I think I get all excited and wrapped up in a holiday, craft like crazy then hit the wall the day after the holiday. So I've been in a little bit of a blogging funk for the last week or two. I am doing my best to get out of it. Find some inspiration and a little extra time and get crafting.
To get the crafting ball rolling I did a little blog hopping and saw eighteen25's adorable St. Patrick's Day subway art. I of course had to have one. So I clicked on the link they posted and printed an 8x10 version, popped it in my designated subway art frame and voila. I am officially festive.
Here is how mine turned out.
I don't know how they make these great little subway art. I've tried with my word program and for some reason they just don't turn out as cool. So I'll let the people who actually know what they are doing make them.

Linking to: Just A Girl

Friday, March 4, 2011

Favorite Finds

Well, I haven't had the motivation to craft up anything this week. So instead of completely deserting this blog I thought I would share some of my favorite finds. I have found plenty of inspiration in blogland for all of us. I'm pretty sure you will see some of these ideas repeated here, they are SO cute!First of all, I think these pots full of gold are super cute and a great idea for teachers and friends. I am 99.9% sure I'll be copying this idea. The Crafting Chicks are so creative!
Everyone in my home is past the stage of needing a burp cloth...Okay, so one might come in handy from time to time. I love ALL things paisley and Little Big Nest's burp clothes are no exception.
I love how there are so many blogs out there that are about sewing. I've never been interested before but when I see cute things like Blue Cricket Design's ruffle t-shirt I suddenly want to sew!!
There ya go, just a few of my favorite finds in this big, big blog world. I hope you have found some inspiration as well.