Pinterest Party Success!

Last Friday I mentioned that our church was hosting our 7th Pinterest party on Saturday.  We had over 70 women, with more than half of them being visitors!  It was so much fun!  It was filled with new friends, great food found on Pinterest, fellowship, and a challenge from God’s Word.  Where would you find Pinterest in the Bible?!  Our speaker showed us!  =)  It was in all the words like, Search, Save, Follow, etc.  So good!

Then of course there was tons of great crafting!  I made only one complete craft, due to helping others with theirs, but that’s okay!  I made many new friends and had a great time!! I thought I’d share with you some of the crafts that were available for us to make.  You could make them ALL for $10!

Wood ornaments

Hip2Save | Not Your Grandma's Coupon Site

Pumpkin Garland

Make this simple yarn pumpkin garland for your fall mantel!

Salt Scrub

Two Fabulous Natural Body Scrub Recipes

Grapevine wreath with felt flowers

Beats trying that with a tomato or orange... 12 More Simple Ideas to Make Everyone Think You’re Crafty | SnarkEcards http://snarkecards.net/12-more-simple-ideas-to-make-everyone-think-youre-crafty/

14 inch Grapevine Wreath Burlap Yellow & Gray by BlessingsAllMine, $34.00

Cinnamon Ornaments

Cinnamon stick Christmas ornaments are easy to make, smell wonderful and make great gifts for friends and family.

Paper journals

make your own notebooks. This is awesome. Last time I wanted to make a personalized notebook, I couldn't find a design I wanted and ended up making everything from scratch. Sewing the pages and everything, totally over 8 hrs of work. This will be much easier for a little gift.

Painted Pine Cones

Delightfully Noted: Painted Pine Cones.....

Most of the crafts were super easy to put together.  I think most everyone went home with a bag full of completed projects!  This has become a favorite event of our ladies each year.  It’s so well executed and is a great tool to reach out to unchurched ladies!  I’ve blogged about it here and you can see how Christina pulls it all together.

If you’re interested in the “how-to” of any of the above crafts, you can find them on this page on Pinterest.  They’re all such cute ideas!

Pinterest is my favorite place to browse for ideas!  I’ve “pinned” LOTS of them with everything from recipes to sewing patterns, and I’ve tried many, many of them.  It’s just a great tool that saves leg work and the accumulation of books.  Anyone else love it like I do?

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Holiday Ideas Begin Now!

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For years I have fallen into a pattern of digging out my Christmas idea books when I decorate for Christmas – usually the first week of December.  The problem with that is that there’s just not enough time then to cull through all the great ideas inside and actually do some of those super-creative projects!

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This year, I got my favorite book out when I pulled out my fall decor.  I’ve been going through its pages and gathering ideas.  It’s full of wonderful decor tips, centerpieces, gift ideas and recipes!  Now maybe you don’t have a book like this – or you’re thinking you’ll just use Pinterest (which is a great resource!), but my encouragement about using books like these is that they also have patterns!  There are step-by-step directions and pages to help you actually pull these ideas off!

If you don’t own a book like this, your library is full of them! Go find one and check it out! I just wanted to encourage you to be thinking NOW about what creative schemes you might want to implement this Christmas.

Now is also the time to create calendars or greeting cards from your great pictures.  You might also make sure that you upload pictures now to the sites where you’ll make that calendar or greeting card.  Order that cool idea for your son-in-law, find the materials needed to make that beautiful wreath or begin making that special gift.

Supplies don’t last forever at Hobby Lobby (I found out the hard way last year!), and your time will run short.  So get a great book, or pull out your Pinterest board where you’ve been saving wonderful ideas and start working on the list of things that need to be done before December gets here.  We’re not rushing Christmas, we’re preparing ahead of time!

Easy DIY Christmas Card Craft

Refresh your Christmas by getting yourself in gear for accomplishing those creative plans you want to do!

Do you love looking through Christmas idea books like I do?

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Five Friday Favorites

We had our first really cold day of fall this week!  It came just in time for Trunk or Treat at church, making it a fun fall activity!  I made these costumes up for my husband and me.  I thought since he’s my other half, it was perfect!!

Dale and me

Life has been so enriched with these precious little boys in our lives.  They are growing and changing so much!  They’re imitating…

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and learning and rolling and growing…and stealing our hearts!

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Fall also means Pumpkin Roll!  Here was the first one of the year!

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To be a part of a group of praying friends is a HUGE blessing in my life.  These ladies are my prayer group.  We have cried, rejoiced, laughed, and prayed so much in the last couple of years.  Wow.  We are rich, indeed!  We got to celebrate a birthday of one of these precious gals this week.  What a joy to rejoice that she is God’s gift to us as a sister in Christ, a friend, and prayer partner!

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What fun activities have been a part of your week?

Do you have a group of women you pray with?  I’d so encourage you to ask God to give you at least two or three!

Refresh your life this weekend in God’s house!

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Creating Meaningful, Inexpensive Wall Decor

IAMaI had the fun recently of attending a decorating class focused on home accessories.  The designer said,

Your home should tell your story.

That really got me to thinking.  I asked myself, “What is my story? It’s the Gospel!  That is the whole purpose of my life! How can my home share that by the decor?”  Well, it doesn’t necessarily have to have Bible verses plastered everywhere, but beautiful art that shares the Scriptures is indeed one great way to tell the story of my Savior.

I had a space on a wall in my living room that needed a picture and I had searched everywhere looking for the right size and design, all to no avail.  Then one day when I was working on a Bible study book I’m doing I noticed these “I Am” cards in the back of the book.  They were beautifully done and there were five of them.  It was then that the idea popped into my head that I could frame those and make a grouping for that needy living room wall.  Not only would the help tell our story, it would be an inexpensive way to fill that space perfectly.  So I had the picture part, now for frames…

Instead of going to the store to buy a frame, I went to a stash that I purchased at the Goodwill store last year.  There was a stack of frames – all sizes and styles marked down – way down!  I got all of them for less than $5 and I had a huge pile!!  The one below was .52 and it was perfect for holding three of my five cards.

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I didn’t like the dark frame, so I painted it white.  Here it is, on its side while the paint dries…

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My encouragement to anyone needing a picture or two on their wall is, don’t limit yourself to just purchased art, which can be really expensive.  Look for smaller things you can frame, like cards that are themed and would help tell your story.  They could be note cards, cards you receive in the mail, postcards, etc.

Then look for frames at yard sales and Goodwill.  They may be scratched or the wrong color, but a little paint will cover that!

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The John 14:6 sign was purchased several years ago, but I didn’t have it hanging up anywhere. I realized it would be perfect to add to this grouping.  I still need one more something to hang on the right side so it will be balanced with the other side of the fireplace.  I’ll show you the finished look when that part gets completed.

In the meantime, I hope this inspires you to seek to tell your story, then be creative with how you do it.  Decorating can be done frugally with a little creativity!

If someone asked you, what would you say is the story you would want your home to convey?

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Chalkboard Pantry Door

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Maybe I love chalkboards so much because I taught school, I don’t know, but I do love them in every shape and fashion!  I have them in several places in my home, but I recently saw a place for a chalkboard that made my jaw drop…it was painted on the pantry door!  “How cute is that?” I thought. I decided then and there that I’d use my leftover chalkboard paint to create that in my kitchen.

But when I got to thinking about putting paint on that vinyl door, it made me wonder what I’d do when the chalkboard love had waned in my heart?  What would I do about that paint?  Another creative thought jumped in and I remembered seeing chalkboard vinyl that could easily be added or removed from a door!!!  This was my answer!

After much searching, I found just what I needed at Hobby Lobby (where else? I should have started there!).  So let me show you the simple process:

The before and after shots:

The vinyl has a grid on the back, making it super easy to cut a straight line, thank the Lord!  Try as I might, my lines wiggle all over the place without those patterns to guide me!  So I measured the width and the length and cut it accordingly.

pantry chalkboard vinyl

Then I took the vinyl with the backing still on it, and starting from the top, I placed the sticky part down,then slowly pulled the backing away, smoothing as I went.  This product went on super well.  It was easy to pull it off and straighten it, or push out any air bubbles,

pantry chalkboard process

Here’s the finished project without any writing on it – all ready for my chalk!!  Woohoo!  It took me 15 minutes to do this!  It doesn’t get any easier.   It’s sticking really well and hasn’t pulled away, but when I am tired of it, it pulls right off. I tested it to be sure!

pantry chalboard plain

I wrote our Easter Menu on the board for the weekend, but…

Pantry Chalkboard a

it already has a new look on it!  I anticipate changing it out weekly!  Why?  Because I love chalkboards!!

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But wait, here’s another fun use for the vinyl!  Have you ever used the last of your cinnamon and forgotten to add that to your grocery list? Then the next time you go to make cookies you remember you’re out of  it?  Me too!  So I also added a small piece of the vinyl inside my spice cupboard so I could remember the ones I needed to purchase and also which ones were stored away in the pantry.

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Not only was this project fast, it was also very inexpensive!  I used my 40% off coupon at Hobby Lobby and purchased this for less than $5.  I didn’t even use the whole roll, which means two things:

  1. It cost me around $3 to do this fun project!
  2. I have more chalkboard vinyl to add to other places in my house!!!  Hurries off to find a place to use that leftover vinyl…

Do you have chalkboards in your house?  How do you use them?

Refresh your home with a cute chalkboard!

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Friday Favorites

What a great week this has been. These days before Christmas are so much fun. Yes, they are full, but full of  blessings! Here are some of my favorites –

What I’m reading:
The Four Streams Bible Reading Plan

I’m almost finished reading through my Bible in a year. What a blessing it’s been to read through the “Four Streams” plan on You Version! It takes you through the New Testament four times, Proverbs four times, the Psalms twice, and the Old testament once. As mentioned here, I’ve been listening to the audio as I follow along in my Bible. That’s been a great addition!

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Projects I’ve worked on…
A blanket scarf.

I bought shirting flannel for $4.50 a yard. I frayed all four sides and folded it in a triangle and tied it in the front. It’s perfect and perfectly warm! I wore it yesterday when it was in the 20’s and it kept me toasty while I was outside!
I did another scarf in a long rectangle, cutting it in half, lengthwise and putting a seam in the middle.

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These were fun projects that gave me two flannel scarves for under $10!

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The most surprising thing I’ve seen…
An Elf!

It’s not every day you see an elf walking down the street! If only I could’ve gotten her to come home and help with the rest of my gift wrapping!  =)  This was at Dollywood where we went to see the Christmas lights and the shows.  Dollywood gives the Gospel in every Christmas show!  It’s wonderful!

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She so sweetly posed for my picture!

What’s been cooking in my kitchen…
Santa Munch

This is a mix of popcorn and pretzels, covered in white chocolate and M&M’s added in! Popcorn is my very favorite snack. This stuff is heaven!

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The cutest recent picture of Liza

Helping me wrap gifts…you know, since the elf couldn’t help!

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It’s not the huge things that stand out – it’s the little blessings God allows that make the days and moments special.  A special verse or chapter of Scripture, a laugh, a crafted treasure, a treat, a curious kitty.  They’re all gifts from my loving Father and I thank Him for each one!

It’s also going to be a great weekend and I’m super excited about what’s planned!
What has a highlight in your week been?

Stay refreshed!

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Simple Christmas Decor In My Kitchen

Happy December, y’all!  I’m in full decorating mode and almost finished!!

I shared with a friend that I was decorating, and she lamented that she didn’t really have places to put decorations because their home is filled with people, rather than furniture (which is a really great thing!).  As I thought about her statement, I thought that there are lots of ways to add Christmas decor or touches that don’t require lots of space.  Let me show you a few pictures of my kitchen and I think you’ll see what I mean.

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I added a small basket of ornaments on my cookbooks that I use as a platform for my lamp.  Just a simple ornament tied to a lamp, doorknob, or coat hook adds a touch of Christmas!  That picture has a sheet of metal in the frame so I can use it as a magnetic board.  I change out the picture with the seasons, using an old Susan Branch calendar.

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If you have open cabinetry, it’s the perfect home for Christmas decor!  I don’t have a lot above my cabinets, but every Christmas I put these blocks up on top. I made mine at our church’s Pinterest party a few years ago by simply free-handing the letters and Christmas tree on the blocks.

 

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The wreath above is hanging on my pantry door.  I added fruits, pine cones and a cookie cutter.  You could add a wreath to any room or door inside or outside without taking up one inch of needed space!

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This table is in my dining room.   I’m still working on this space, but as seen in the things I edited onto my photo,like a little greenery, or seasonal cups and saucers, the room looks ready for Christmas!

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Lastly, making your home smell like Christmas is another way to create the holiday atmosphere in your home without taking up much space at all.  A plug-in fragrance, a candle, potpourri or simmering pot of citrus and cinnamon would all be great.  My sweet neighbor brought me this Yankee candle, and if you want your house to smell amazing, you need one of these!  This is Iced Gingerbread.  (Right now you can buy one large candle and get one FREE!)

All of my decor are just simple touches – nothing elaborate at all.  Refreshing your home for Christmas can be minimal, yet make your home special for your family.

If you need some other ideas for decorations that don’t require much space, here are a few more ideas…

  • Candy canes in your current decor – baskets floral containers, or a glass jar.
  • Holiday linens – Place mats, tablecloths, napkins, dish towels
  • Slipcover couch pillows with Christmas/winter slipcovers.

 

 

  • Shop Christmas Decor Up to 70% Off! Huge selection with new items added each and every day! At zulily.com you'll find something special every day of the week!:
  • Make a pinecone garland to hang anywhere – you don’t have to have a mantle!
  • Print off free printables.  Frame and hang!

25 free Christmas printable:

Have you started your decorating for Christmas?  What’s your favorite way to add a touch of Christmas to your kitchen?

Each week in December I’ll be posting ideas to help you simplify Christmas.  The next post will be on Wednesday in the form of a video.  I hope you’ll stop in to hear the six ideas I’ll be sharing!

Stay refreshed,

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