Sunday, January 31, 2010

Easy Monogram


Frame (painted your color of choice)
1/4" board cut to fit
Scrapbooking paper

I had the board and paper left over from my World Market Art project and I picked up a nice oak frame at Goodwill for $1.50.

The frame was painted Espresso (American Accents) and the board cut to fit.

A thin layer of modpodge was applied to both the board and the back of the paper.

Air bubbles were worked out and the paper left to dry.

I used my Cricut to cut out initals using brown scrapbooking paper.

The letters were modpodged on, and after they dried, a thin layer of modpodge was applied over the entire picture.

Before the modpodge had set, I went back with a toddler paintbrush and created swirls for texture.

After everything had dried, the "artwork" was put into the frame and a wire hanger attached to the back.

Super easy and cheap!

And yes, my lighting really is that bad...

Friday, January 29, 2010

World Market How To

Please don't be mad at me World Market.

When I saw this beautiful piece of art in your store, I just knew I had to have it.

The way each square was different but the vine was continuous throughout the whole picture just made my lil heart go pitter pat.

Please don't be offended that I refused to pay $139.99 and chose, instead, to make it myself.

Instead, find satisfaction in the fact that copying someone is the highest form of flattery.



I needed 9 feet of window casing and 12 feet of screen molding. I bought the cheaper MDF moldings, which are already primed white.

The moldings didn't even come to $10.

For the background, I purchased a 4 ft by 8 ft sheet of 1/4" (I think it was mahogany) board and had it cut down to a 3 ft by 3 ft board.

The entire sheet cost $19 and I have scraps for another project.

The papers came from a scrapbooking book entitled "Complete Boy". There were 180 papers in the book (3 of each design) and there were so many that I loved that I had a really hard time narrowing it down to 9.

After my coupon, I ended up paying $10 for the book.

I modpodged down one piece at a time.

A thin layer of modpodge on the board, a thin layer on the back of the paper and then put them together.

Carefully, work out the air bubbles as they appear. Take your time on this step, because you don't want bubbles in your finished project.

I put several long strips of waxed paper over the whole project and then took a sharpie and drew out where I wanted my design to be.

If you are super crafty, you could probably just paint the black vine on, but, since I don't trust myself AT ALL, I needed to make a pattern.

I then took 9 squares of black scrapbooking paper (already had these) and taped them together.

I then put my wax paper over the black squares and used that as a guide as I cut out the vine.

I found that cutting it out using the wax paper pattern really made the vine "flow" and made it look like it was all one piece.

This step was somewhat time consuming and Corey helping me made this much easier.

After the vine was cut out, I modpodged each piece on.

After the vine had dryed, I used a paintbrush to apply a thin layer of modpodge over the entire thing.

I then went back with a chunky, toddler paintbrush and created "swirls" over the whole picture.

The window casing was then cut to fit and glued together.

The corners were stapled too, just to ensure that it stayed together.

After the frame was painted black (American Accents Canyon Black), the main board was turned over and stapled through the back, into the frame.

The screen moldings were painted black, cut to fit and then glued on with Liquid Nails.

Wire was used on the back to hang it with.

Believe me when I say...If I can make this, anyone can.

It was that easy.

And it only cost $40.

(If you didn't already have the modpodge, black spray paint and black scrapbooking paper, you would probably end up spending an additional $10.)

Come and check out the parties that I link too-lots of inspiration there!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Candle make-overs

I so love the look of a lit candle.

But since I have nine kids and I don't want my house to burn down, I just don't ever light any.

I don't know who invented the battery operated ones a mom of many small children probably but I think they are the best invention ever. besides my leopard print boots, of course

But, I am a cheepo and I just can't see shelling out the big bucks for the really pretty, big battery operated candles.

So, I buy the $5 ones at Walmart and dress them up a bit.

Here are some with a bit o' ribbon and some bling.

Here is one that I added a couple of different kinds of ribbon too.

But, the more I looked at it, the more I was convinced that my candle was wearing a garter.

It drove me batty.

So, I removed the garter, er, ribbon.

Ewwwwww...I did not use my teeth.

Get your mind out of the gutter.


I painted a wooden fleur and attached it to some scrapbooking paper.

Much better!
Me likey!

Copy Cat Art

I am, apparently, a shameless copy cat.

And I don't even loose any sleep at night over it.

Here is a piece of artwork from World Market.

Their price $139.99

Here is my version.

Cost $40

Can you tell I'm having fun?

Eagle Court of Honor

Recently we celebrated the twins making Eagle Scout by holding an Eagle Scout Court of Honor.

The twins were awarded their Eagle Scout awards and then we all hung out enjoying some gourmet desserts.

The only hiccup in the whole thing was when the twins were given the Mother's pins to pin on me.

They both scrambled to be the first one to get to "pin" me. Joseph shoved Michael out of the way and announced that because he was the "older twin" (hello Joe, only by a mere minute) that he got to pin me first.

Michael allowed it, but when it was his turn, he loudly proclaimed, "I'm pinning mine higher".

Nice that my Eagle Scouts are such a good example of maturity.


Here are the centerpieces that my brother and sister in law made.

We ripped boards off of our old barn don't panic, we are ripping it down eventually anyway and printed out all the words from the Boy Scout Law. The words were glued to the wood and each table had a different word.

We went to the scout store and bought the 12 Eagle required Merit Badges and each one was glued onto a barnwood plaque. Each table had a different one.

See how I slipped in a fleur in the background of the merit badge plaques? I just can't seem to help myself when it comes to fleurs. I wonder if there is such a thing as fleuritis?

Jo-Ann's Fabrics had actual official Scout fabric. I bought a bunch (with my 40% off coupon, of course) and cut out squares for the centerpieces.

We used three different sizes of canning jars and filled them with rocks and battery operated candles (from the dollar store). Then, a flag went into each large jar. Each table had a picture of the twins in their Scout uniforms, in frames that I also picked up at the dollar store.

I'd been buying cheesy ceramic eagles at Goodwill here and there, and Corey rounded them all up and spray painted them with a bronze paint. This way they would resemble a much more expensive (cough cough) and regal looking bronze statue.

Some random pinecones and knots rounded out the centerpieces, making for a really cute display.

Thankfully because it was a lot of work for just one night we have other Scouts working towards Eagle so I know we will be able to reuse them.

The twins with their Nana

The twins with their best buddy, "Just-cool"

Up and coming Eagles (the one on the right is my Timothy)

Corey's aunt and uncle, along with his dad and grandpa

I have no idea what is going on with Matthew here...

Corey's brother and sister-in-law came from Utah. Have I ever mentioned how much we love these guys?

Our beloved Nana and Uncle Al.

The standard "say cheese" face from Levi

My dad with his buddy, Levi

Poster that my awesome brother and sister-in-law put together for the twins

Pictures of their Eagle Scout Project

Table where we displayed the twins' Award Books, Eagle Scout Project Books and Scout binders.

The twins' Cub Scout uniforms. It feels like they just turned eight and started Cub Scouts. How can they already be Eagle Scouts?

Proud Parents!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Saving my bacon

I am the type of person that rarely asks for help.

I readily give help but I just have an extremely hard time asking.

I feel guilty when I do ask for help.

I feel like I have passed on a burden to another person and it tortures me.

I really hate doing that to another person.

I recently "overbooked" myself. Thanksgiving, an out of town trip, planning an Eagle Scout court of honor, kids playing multiple sports, an adoption "party", and Levi's blessing at church all happened in 10 day period.

So many good things but in a little time frame that left me feeling overwhelmed.

A friend of mine, Charlotte aka Sewing Guru, came over to help me with some questions that I had about cutting out a dress for Lily.

I was planning on staying up most of the night because I needed it done by the next morning.

She literally ripped the fabric and pattern out of my hands and took it home, ignoring my feeble protests.

Early the very next morning, we stopped by her house on the way out of town.

The dress was completed. As in all done. How she took a pile of fabric, a pattern and whipped up an amazing little dress overnight, I don't know. And it looked waaaaaay better then the one that I had sewn for Hannah just don't tell Hannah I said that.

We were all so impressed, not only that she is really an amazing seamstress but that she was willing to take her time to help me out.

Thanks Char! I just can't tell you enough what that meant to me.

You. are. amazing.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Before and During After

Last year, I decided that it was time to get back to my normal weight again.

I got on a workout routine and lost a lot of weight.

I still have more so that is my goal for this year.

Here is moi and Lily, Christmas 08
No laughing peeps, I'd just had three babies in four years

Here is moi and Lily, Christmas 09

50 pounds lighter!

Next year, I plan on showing the "after" pix.

Hey, a girl's gotta have her dreams, right?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Mr. Frost

Recently, Joseph was elected "Mr. Frost" of his freshman class.

Every year the high school students in each grade vote for their "Mr. Frost" and the winner is kept a secret.

The parents of each Mr. Frost are notified and arrangements are made for a surprise early morning visit, videotaped, of course.

Because my Joseph is not normal gets up super duper early every morning to either run or go to swim practice before school, the wake-up crew had to come to our house first.

When they arrived at 3:30am ugh, all dressed in black, video camera in hand, they snuck up the stairs and into Joseph's room.

Then, it sounded like all hell broke loose when they went bursting into his room. The air horn, hand clappers and war cries woke everyone up. Sigh.

But Joseph was already up and out of bed, getting ready for the day.

At the school wide assembly later that week, they showed the video of all the "wake-up calls".

The student body president announced that Joseph was already awake and that she thinks that he never sleeps.

By the end of the week there was a rumor floating around that Joseph was really a vampire.

High school totally cracks me up.

Here is Joseph talking to the Student Body Prez during the school assembly.

Here he is sitting next to the Sophomore Mr. Frost, who happens to be Joseph's friend.

All four Mr. Frost's (sorry the lights were out because the video was being shown and it is also making the Prez's eyes look really wiggie.)

Some great memories!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Best Buds

Corey came in the family room and found these two sharing a blanket while laying on the couch.

I just can't tell you how happy it makes me to see how much these two love each other.

Levi is considerably bigger then Hannah. I can't wait to see people try to figure out how she is the older sister.

And yes, Hannah has make-up on...again.

Can't seem to keep her out of it.

Look on the bright side, at least Levi's not interested in make-up too...

Saturday, January 23, 2010

My eternal family

One of my in-laws wanted this pix taken. Four generations of family. Actually, my entire family as well, except for me. Still scratching my head on that one.

Great Grandpa with Lily Pad

Levi with his bio grandparents. We are forever indebted to these people. There are no adequate words of appreciation. They could have stepped in and raised this little boy. But they let us. There are truly no words...

My twinerds

Corey's grandpa, dad and our Michael

I love this one of Great-Grandpa with Matthew

Levi with three of his bio siblings. Wish I could show you a better pix, they are all beautiful children. But, I am respecting their privacy.

Levi destroying smelling the flowers.

Joshua and Lily Pad (who has a massive shiner)

My eternal family