Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The DIY That is Saving My Sanity

I hate it.

Towels are the worst.  

I have tried to get my kids to use the same towel more than once.  A concept that they clearly cannot grasp.

The final straw that pushed me over sanity's edge was when I went to get a clean towel for me and they only thing left was a green hooded frog towel.  Upon walking into Big Hoots room I see three of my good towels.wadded the corner.


So I came up with this little number and a plan to keep the towel peace around these parts

I took a piece of wood, painted it with some paint I had on hand.  Did some string art letters for their initials, added some hooks, and hung that puppy front and center on the bathroom wall!

I went to Target and purchased six towels (3 pattern and 3 solid) that went with the colors in our bathroom.  Then I let them each choose two.  The deal is this:  They are solely responsible for making sure they have a clean towel on their hook and for making sure their dirty towel gets into the laundry room with the rest of their clothing.  

So far so good....

Let's just pause for a moment and reflect on the cute chubbiness of this.  All 3 Hoots at 9 months old.
Bottom left-Big Hoot at a big box store studio
Top right-Middle Hoot-another big box store
Top left-Little Hoot-in our living room, in a pink drink tin, with a giant duck that was ours then went to a friends house and came back for a cameo for this picture.  Let's also note that frame isn't even the right size for the picture.  #poorthirdchild

ANNND at what point does this become awkward for Big Hoot's tween friends to walk into our bathroom and see his baby self half nekkid on the wall.
It might be time to start considering some new decor........

My sanity-1
Wet towel laundry-0

Monday, February 2, 2015

Mixed Media Art Canvases

February Dine and Create is going to be a messy one!

We will be making Mixed Media art canvases.  An awesome technique I learned while at Camp Create from the very talented Stephanie Ackerman.  It was so much fun to incorporate paper, paint, tape, stickers, stamps, and whatever you can imagine into one piece of artwork.

It is so amazing to have one idea about how it is going to look and then have it turn out completely different and better than you imagined it in the first place!

I can't wait to share this fun process with all the awesome ladies who attend Dine and Create this month!  If you are interested and would like to attend, click the tab at the top of the page for more information.  Or shoot me an email and I will fill you in on all the details!
Happy Monday!

Top and bottom left done by Yours Truly
Top and bottom right done by the Super Amazingly talented Stephanie Ackerman

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

40 is the New Black Gift Basket

I walked into an Early Childhood Family Education class right after Big Hoot turned a year old.  I took one look around and realized all these moms knew each other and already had a pretty solid friendship going.  I decided right then that I wouldn't not be returning.  I could socialize my precious firstborn in some other way where we would not be the outsiders.  But of the moms turned around and started talking to us and made us feel welcome in the class.  

Yesterday I had the privilege of celebrating her 40th birthday with her.  That one class 10 years ago brought 7 amazing new friends into my life and I am beyond thankful for every one of them!

I put together a little gift basket of goodies for the birthday girl.  It was super easy and fun.  I am pretty sure gift giving is one of my love languages.  I love to shop for and wrap and give gifts for every occasion!

I wandered through Target picking up all the cute black and white things I 

Put them all in a basket 

 Made a tag on my die cut machine
Tied the tag to the basket and done!  Super easy and fun!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Pinterest Faves

I would love to have this in my house!

I really want someone to make this for me. Hint Hint Mom....
I need these for my new planner.  So what if it is the end of 
January and it is still sitting in the box.  I guess I REALLY 
need these.
One of my goals this year to make my own bread.  This looks yummy and 
and an easy place to start.

My kids have been on a Brussel Sprouts kick lately. This
looks delicious and bacon makes everything better.  Right?!

You can follow along with my crazy Pinterest addiction HERE!  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Dine and Create {January}

The first craft night of 2015 was SO MUCH fun!  We ate delicious food and crafted and laughed a lot.  I have not laughed that much in a long time!

We made the fabric USA hoop art from Flamingo Toes.  The project took a little longer that I had anticipated so I never got a picture of all the hoops, but trust me when I tell you they all turned out AH-MA-ZING.  

Chef T made an All American meal.  Cheeseburger sliders, sweet potato fries, southern mac and cheese, and caramel brownie sundaes.  It was all delicious.  Again, so busy laughing and having fun I didn't take any pictures.  

I will do better next month.  I promise.  Maybe y'all should come and keep me on picture taking track.

Here is what I did manage to get pictures of:

 Fun swag bags for the crafters!  Valentines Day balloons from Paperscapes1212 and Necklaces from Cherry and Main via Groopdealz. (yep, there is a typo)

There were also several awesome prizes giveaways from some of my favorite shops!

Adorable coffee mug courtesy of Dayspring
They have the best coffee mugs and notebooks.  I think I own one of everything they have!

Love necklace just in time for Valentines Day from Ike and Co

TheThe Honaker HomeMaker sent one of her heart string art pieces for a giveaway also.  I didn't photograph it ahead of time because it was wrapped so cute and I wanted the winner to be able to open it.  Then I forgot.:( .  I pretty much want one of everything in her shop.  I adore string art!

Thank You gifts from me.  I always want to thank those who come out and support
this little dream of mine with something.  Of course I always try to coordinate with the 
theme of the evening!
pretzel bags and colored sixlets from Walmart
Chalkboard labels from Target dollar section

My adorable painting from Noodle and Lou came just in time for craft night.  I hung that
puppy right away and smile every time I walk by it.  I wish my house had a polka dot
roof and stripy trees....

Name tags for the craft ladies.  Again with the theme.

All set up and ready to craft!  Kids and hubs had already been kicked out so all supplies
were safe!
These ladies got right down to business!  

Cute babies are always welcome at Dine and Create!

Yay for Camp Create friends who live close and come and craft and than 
take over helping others when the hostess gets lazy!  
Thanks Beth!

My favorite part about craft night is seeing how everyone has the same project and tools
and everyone's project turns out so differently.  I love watching the creative process work in

uh-oh Crabby Crafter!  Think she would be in a better mood since 
she won the awesome Dayspring mug.  And since she was almost done and since
her map turned out amazing!

It was such a fun night!  Next month is Art Journaling canvas and plans are being made for some big crafting events with Dine and Create!  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

More God-Sized Dreaming

I think it took me so long to post about Whatever Camp Create because a part of me felt like maybe I didn't belong there.  The other women have amazing dreams and talents and I felt as if my dreams and talents were not on par with theirs.  I didn't have the words to describe it for a long time.  

Friends and family would ask me about it and I would say "it was fun", which it totally was.  
"It was life-changing", again it was but I wasn't exactly sure how life-changing it was yet.  
"It was amazing". Again completely true but I couldn't describe it beyond that.  I didn't know how to explain how leaving was incredibly hard because I wanted to stay in the safe confines of the Craft House where my dream was still just a dream and not something I had to breathe life into and make happen.  I didn't know how to tell them that on my 9 hour drive home, I prayed about my dream, my new friend's dreams and things that I had been avoiding praying about because reality is hard. How I blasted worship music really loud because I am rarely in my car alone and I could totally do it.  I didn't even really know how to tell them what my God-Sized Dream was.  

So I didn't.  

I came home, hugged and kissed my boys, and returned to life as it was before.  

I had purchased a copy of Holley's Book You are Made for a God-Sized Dream before I went to Camp Create.  We also received a copy of it while we were there.  I had decided that I was going to come home and send it a sweet friend with a note telling her to sign it and pass it along to the next person who she thought would benefit from it.

I sent it off to a friend who like me, was a stay at home mama and now her kids were in school full time and she was trying to decide what to do next while still staying in her mama first role.  She likes writing and has toyed with the idea of writing a book, so I thought maybe this would give her the courage and support to follow that dream.

We got together for coffee one morning shortly after she had started reading the book and she told me all about her God-Sized Dream.  And it was completely different than what I had pictured!

She was heading up a program at her children's elementary school to provide backpacks of food for kids who need it over weekends and school breaks.  It was so amazing to sit and listen to her tell me all about the people God had placed in her path to help with this project.  The help, the financial support, and the communities support.  Every detail was taken care of.  It gave me goosebumps to hear her story.  

In that moment, I decided that was the reason I was at Camp Create.  Not just to realize the path God has for me in this next season of life, but to walk beside and support new and old friends in their journeys as well. 
God is already there!

Monday, January 12, 2015

God-Sized Dreaming

Back in September I was blessed to attend a little major event called Whatever Camp Create.  It came at a time in my life when I was trying to decide my next steps.  I have been a stay at mama for nearly 11 years and next Fall my baby will head off to kindergarten, so that means it is time for me to decide what I want to do when I grow up.  I know that I didn't want to head back to teaching or hang out in an office all day.  I felt like God was calling me to use some of my creativity and love of vintage things to be my jumping off point.  

So I packed up and headed to Kansas.  Once again it didn't disappoint.  I was star struck because I am a dork.  Meg and Kimberlee, Stephanie AckermanShannan MartinMichelle Allen, and Holley Gerth were the hosts/encouragers/helpers for the week.  They are all so talented and taught us so much.

Holley did sessions with us based on her book You're Made for a God-Sized Dream.
You're Made for a God-Sized Dream

We worked through the book and all the brave souls in the room went around and shared their own God-Sized Dreams.  There were tears and laughter and lots of bonding that happened.  I will never forget these 16 women ever.  I pray for them, encourage them, and support them in their dreams.  They are truly girls God placed in my life for such a time as this.  I would never had met them any other way and one lives 20 minutes from me (Hi Beth!).  His timing is perfect.

My God-Sized Dream is to eventually own a house to use as a crafting retreat.  But since that will happen in God's timing and not my own. Dine and Create was born out of the wait.  I welcome women into my house one night a month and my neighbor provides a delicious meal and I provide a craft.  The goal is for busy women to have a night to relax and enjoy a meal they didn't prepare, eat off dishes they don't have to wash, fellowship with other women, complete a project uninterrupted, and leave feeling fulfilled and inspired. 

We had two Dine and Create nights last year and they were success. We received lots of positive comments and felt like this was something that we needed to continue to do.  We are really looking forward to kicking of 2015 with our first one next week.  I am excited to see where God will take us this year and the people he will introduce into our lives.  

If you are local (Twin Cities, MN) and are interested in attending or learning more, please feel free to contact me.  I would love to share more!

Here are a few pictures from my time in Kansas.  Of course, Meg's blog has more (and better) ones.  I just so busy being star struck to take many!!

Michelle's amazing handiwork on the chalkboard

Bonding around the campfire Braverman Style

Kansas sunflower fields do not disappoint.  

The craft that pushed me out of my crafting comfort zone. 
First we carved the stamp, then we stamped on fabric and made
these cute ornaments.