Friday, February 25, 2011

Little House on the Prairie...I mean Neighborhood

We lived without power for 36 hours...and it felt just like we were
living during the time of Little House on the Prairie.
The Ice Storm of 2011 took down power lines and created some amazingly beautiful problems.
 Hubby was out of town for the duration of our power outage, which made things a little harder...but, we made it through. 
The first night we cuddled in bed and woke up to a FREEZING house.

 The next morning as I was lying in bed I pondered how I was going to make a cup of coffee for myself. would you do that?
I don't have a clue how I would boil water over the fireplace.
K.K. decided we should have a gas stove instead of electric...good observation...that would help.
I started a fire and guess what?  My dear friend brought me a hot coffee, from Biggby. 
She was amazing to brave the storm and deliver my morning brew.  Thank you Karyn! 
During the day we sat by the fire and read the end of Little House on the Prairie and we talked about what it would be like to live with out power and technology. 
It was a great teachable moment.

We got ready for our night at 4:30...with out any lights we wanted to be prepared.
Our dinner was hot dogs roasted on the fire and brownie ice cream sundaes.
(The ice cream was melting...good excuse, right?)
Before bed Rachel and Brian Bell stopped by to see how we were doing...funny thing was, they had power.
They thought it would be fun to hang out by our fireplace and play flashlight tag.
Then they went home to their warm home.
We slept with sleeping bags on the floor in front of the fire.
I had to add logs to the fire every hour, which meant I didn't sleep so much.
I think I brought in 6-8 cratefuls of wood throughout the 36 hours.

The next morning we decided to find a warm place with electricity.
We went to our church and played in the gym, watched a movie, played games and took showers.
A group of friends joined us at church for a pancake dinner...
(we had to use up all of our eggs, bacon and sausages that were going to go bad.)
Our power was back on...and Hubby came home from Ohio.
It took a few days to get my Internet back up. 
It maybe would have been a good idea to plug it back into the phone jack.
But, I am back in blog land...for better or worse.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

New Wall color...

Hello...the BEFORE: WHITE.

This is just to show you in my painting glory. 
I get to do the trimming...and Hubby does all of the rolling.
We work together as a good team.
 We ORBed the light fixture too...the silver wasn't so bad...but it looks nicer, I think.

I love the color changes paint on the wall, new paint on the door handles.
Things are looking nice and clean and crisp!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day...

20 Ways to Make a Good Marriage Great
by Richard W. Linford
1. Night and Morning Prayer to say thanks, to ask for help in your marriage and family, to worship together.
2. A Weekly Planning Meetingto discuss the calendar, talk over needs and problems, decide priorities and next steps.
3. A Daily Phone Call or Personal Conversationto say “I love you,” to touch base, to discuss the day, to show you care.
4. A Weekly Date to a favorite park, a concert, the library, the gym; or staying home for a candlelight dinner, a game, or a mutual hobby.
5. Patience Regardlessof missed meals, tardiness, forgotten favors, a thoughtless remark, impatience.
6. Daily Servicehelping with house or yard work, mending a piece of clothing, taking a turn with the sick baby, fixing a favorite meal. (Write it down. Do it!)
7. A Budgetto tie down income and expenses, help set financial goals, and give you control over your finances.
8. Listeningnot only to what is said, but also to what is meant.
9. Regular Attendanceat church.
10. Daily Scripture Readingto learn the gospel, to receive inspiration for yourself and your marriage, to become more like Jesus.
11. Working Togethercaring for a garden, painting a bedroom, washing the car, scrubbing floors, building a piece of furniture, writing a poem together, team teaching a class.
12. Forgiving Each Otheralways learning from each other, trying a different way, being the first to make peace. 
13. Courtesies like saying please and thank you, not interrupting or belittling, not doing all the talking, continuing the niceties of courtship.
14. Soft and Kind Wordsof tenderness, compassion, empathy.
15. Learning Together byreading to each other, discussing ideas, taking a class.
16. Respectingopinions, ideas, privacy.
17. Supporting Your Spouse’schurch service and righteous goals.
18. Caring for Your Spouse’s Family by … enjoying their company, praying for them, serving them, overlooking differences.
19. Occasional Giftssuch as a note, a needed item—but mostly gifts of time and self.
20. Loving with All Your Heart. “Thou shalt love thy wife [thy husband] with all thy heart, and shalt cleave unto her [him] and none else.”

Bathroom Cabinet makeover

Oak was hard for me to paint really was.
But, the varnish was pealing, the luster was gone...and I needed a new look in our master bathroom.
I've been begging Hubby to let me paint them...and he wasn't so sure it was a good idea.
 I decided to just do it...and ask for forgiveness later if he hated it. 
But instead of hating it...he actually said, "Let's do the other bathroom too!"
Hmm...we'll have to see.

 How do you do it?
Step 1: remove all of the hardware
Step 2: wash and lightly sand the cabinets to get off all of the hairspray, toothpaste and varnish
(Why are bathrooms always gross?)
Step 3: tape...I didn't want to have the inside of the cabinets painted so I decided to tape all of the saves a ton of time.
Step 4: prime.  I used KILZ is great if some of the greasy residue didn't come off

Step 5: lightly sand again to make sure you don't have any paint bubbles
Step 6: paint with semi-gloss black paint.  I used a small foam roller on it.
Step 7: let it dry
Step 8: put hardware back on.



I think they look much better. 
What do you think?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Door Handle Tutorial

Step 1: Take off all hardware that is gold.
Step 2: If it is dirty or needs a little sanding...I would clean it.  But, it isn't necessary to get it perfectly clean.
Step 3: Go OUTSIDE (I went in the garage because it is FREEZING out...and we have 3 feet of snow.
This stuff is the best: Rust-Oleum  The Color: Oil Rubbed Bronze
 Step 4: I used Styrofoam cups to hold my handles in place...this was a great way for me to be able to turn them to apply the paint evenly...and in those hard to reach places.
Step 6: I let my handles dry inside...otherwise they were way too tacky in the 18* garage.

I had a lot of door handles that needed to be degoldified.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Door Handle Makeover

Oh these gold handles had to go!!  I decided to run to Menards to pick up my favorite spray paint.
I love Rust-O-Leum's Oil Rubbed Bronze!
It turns anything gold into something beautiful.
Here is another picture of the before.

Look at these beautiful handles now!!

So...then I decided to tackle ALL of our door handles.  Man, I didn't realize there were SO many.
My house smells like paint. 
Happy Days.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Winter Wonderland

The bitter cold temps have us all bundled up in the house these days...the kids don't even want to go sledding in the back yard.  It's just too cold.
Plus they are all sick.  We've got the fevers, coughs and achy bodies.
I was sick first...and passed it on to everyone else.
Sorry Guys.
While you are all in bed...I am going to go outside and get some pictures of the snow.

 Off to the side of our house I kind of "claimed" a little piece of land that I will call my little "heaven."  When the weather is nice and the kids are outside I grab my favorite magazine or book and sit out in my area.  The kids love to have tea parties, talk with me and enjoy a glass of lemonade. 
Oh...I miss the warm summer days!

 I even hung up an old chandelier...just to give in a little girly feel.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Comments...oh the love of the settings...

I've only been blogging for only a few weeks...and I must say I am learning a LOT!  It has been a fun experience to think about new things to show you, new things to create, and let me tell you how excited I am to have warmer weather so I can start spray painting again!!! One of my dear sisters, Tammy, is also a blogger...mentioned that she has been leaving comments but that they aren't showing up.  HUH???  Then I heard from a few others that they didn't see their previous comments.  WHAT??  You mean there are people out there reading this blog??  There are people that are commenting and I am not reading them?  REALLY?!?!? 
After a little research... I realized that I needed to change a few settings on my dashboard to make it all legit. 
SO...just wanted to let you know...


Last week we had a few snow days...due to the "Blizzard of 2011!"...and so I decided to work a little on my extra card stash.  (You know...those cards that you need real quick...and don't have enough time to make?)
Here are a few that I created:
Close to my Heart: Wings Paper
I love the flower in this next was really easy to make.  I used my scalloped circle punch and punched about 6 layers of the same size.  Then using my spritzer (just some water in a spray bottle...usually used to clean my stamps) I sprayed some water on the the paper.  I scrunched some of them up a lot and then layered them on top of each other.  I let them dry and then added a button on top.

These next few cards use the Miracle paper.

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Crafty Room

This room is where I spend a majority of my free time. 
I absolutely LOVE to scrapbook, make cards, sew, and do anything crafty!!
You are lucky to see the craft room clean...
usually it is full of paper, ribbons, pictures and well, you name's there!
When we decided to move one of the things I really wanted was a room for crafting.
Here she is:

My East wall...
 Inks, pens, paints, re-inkers, the Cricut, Idea books and paper stacks.
My ribbon should be called my ribbon tangled mess...just don't open the doors...
it's a scary thing.
This is where I hang my completed layouts...I keep them up just in case I have a need to add to them or make tweaks before I put them into the book.
My stamps...this was supposed to be a bathroom tower...but it has a better purpose in holding stamps.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Fruits of the Spirit

This favorite thing comes from my children.
At dinner our kiddos pass out these tags to place on their sister/brother's plates before we serve our food.
You see...they give a tag based on how someone has shown one of the fruits of the spirit that day.
So, here's an example...K-K may give E-man the tag of kindness because he played Clue with her when he really wanted to play Battleship...for that K-K thought he was kind.
 The kids LOVE getting recognized for their good deeds and it is also a great way to remind them to think about others...rather than themselves.  I used to give the tags out...but it is more fun listening to them come up with reasons of why they chose the tag. hear some fun reasons!
One of my favorites: Adi loves to give E-man gentleness because he didn't wrestle her to the ground that day.

This is one of the walls in our kitchen.
How do you teach your children important character traits?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Layout: A walk to Remember

 Once a month I have a group of friends who come over and scrapbook with me.  We call it our scrapbook club.  My job is to put together a layout (all precut) so that the ladies can put it together and enjoy the time chatting, laughing and catching up on their scrapbooking.  This is February's includes the brand new paper: "Wings" from the Spring Close to My Heart catalog.  LOVE IT!!
(Sorry about the flash in the is a better one of the first page.)
 Page Two
Don't you just love the paper and stamps?...all of it's from Close to My Heart!  Check out the new catalog...and if you find any treasures you would like to order...let me know!

 We have an incredible arboretum right by our house that has 
miles of walking trails that not many people know about.
It's a hidden treasure in Kalamazoo!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Decorating the school room for Valentine's Day

I LOVE the black dresser that I refinished.
I found this beauty on Craigslist for FREE...but it was free for a reason.
It was nasty...but with a little paint and some distressing it is PERFECT to store all of our homeschooling 
books, math manipulatives, pencils and games.
I wish I had a before picture to show you how gorgeous she was! HA! 
 Sometimes the kiddos need a little "smart candy" when they think the work they are doing is too hard.
I just like having the candy machine downstairs!  We tried gumballs...but they lose their flavor so fast. 
We tried jelly beans...but they were too gummy.  We LOVE the chewy Sprees!