Saturday, August 27, 2011

More DIY fun!

If you've been following along with my other blog, The Pinterest Project, you may have seen my friend Jamie's canvas art for her office.  If you haven't, check it out HERE.  A few weeks ago, I came across this and knew I wanted to replicate it for my house:

So, with Jamie's recent success at a canvas art piece I felt inspired and brave enough to try my hand at it.  I set off to Michael's in search of supplies.  What I picked up was an 8x10 canvas, paint, a sponge and letter stickers.  That's it!

I measured the canvas, figured out how I wanted the spacing to go and ended up with this:

Then I put paint all over the canvas.  At first I was nervous, but it seemed to be going so well that I got a little carried away and put too much on in some places.  (oops)  I let the paint dry while I was cooking dinner and then I carefully peeled the stickers off.  (I also painted the sides of the canvas to make it look more finished)

I hung this on my wall where I stole the mirror from for my Chalkboard Project.  On either side of this, I put a smaller canvas that I covered with mod podge and scrapbook paper.

What do you guys think?  Now that I feel more confident, I might try a bigger size to fill up that space more, but it's a good start for now.  Also, do yourself a favor this morning and watch this video - it's the story behind the hymn, It is Well.  Cry your eyes out, and then thank God for your many blessings.   I wanted to have a daily reminder of how blessed I am, and I think this simple piece of "artwork" will do just that.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Oh, there you are...

There's a scene from an Austin Powers movie that we used to use all the time when I worked at the Jungle Cruise in the Magic Kingdom.  We would cruise up to the dock in our boats and do this scene with the skippers who were there to help unload the boats.

I love this scene.  I may or may not still do it with a few of my Disney friends when we see each other after a long time apart.

As Beckett gets older, he is seeing and tracking more things.  One of my favorite moments every day is when he first wakes up or when I walk into his line of focus and say hello.  There is this sudden moment of recognition where I picture him saying, "Oh there you are!  You're the lady with the kisses and the milk!"  As a parent, there is really no better moment.  It's a pleasure to know that not only does he recognize my face, but he is happy to see me.  He grins, and he knows that I will take care of his needs.

Stay with me here...

Imagine that moment with our Heavenly Father.  You know the moment when it all just clicks?  When it feels like you are looking and looking and confused and lost - and then suddenly His face comes into focus and you lock eyes with Him.  And you feel this sense of relief and joy.  Oh.  There you are.

I believe there is no better moment for our Heavenly Father than the moment we lock eyes and see His face.  I know He feels joy.  He will take care of my needs, just like I take care of Beckett and Logan's needs.  He loves us more than we can imagine possible.  When you feel lost, remember that. 

"Oh.  There You are..."

See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! - 1 John 3:1

Friday, August 12, 2011

Nutella Cookies

So, my friend Jamie (of Macie's Little Hat Co.) got me hooked on Pinterest.  It's a site more dangerous than Facebook, especially for people like me who have that whole "I can totally do that" complex.  But I finally decided to put Pinterest away this morning and stop daydreaming about redoing my house and wardrobe with nothing but Elmers Glue and fabric scraps (just joking...kind of).  I figured I'd do some cleaning instead.

If you're my friend on Facebook you probably know I'm in a fight daily with my hardwood floors.  I've tried everything from Orange Glo to Swiffer to vinegar and water to the Shark...they're still cloudy.  Clean, yes.  Shiny, no.  I washed them AGAIN today with the Shark and then got cranky at them so I sprayed a little wood polish on top of one section.  Oh, so pretty.  Oh, so shiny.  Oh, so slippery...oops.

So, I gave up and decided to bake cookies instead.  I present to you: NUTELLA COOKIES.

We only happen to have Nutella laying around because Harris Teeter was displaying it along with a coupon for $1.50 off if you also bought Thomas' English Muffins (which we happen to eat a lot of around here)  Plus it was double coupon week so I got $3.00 off.  This recipe looked super simple and tasty - so I threw together a batch this morning, making just a few changes.  Here is the original recipe, which I found on  HELLO?  Just FOUR ingredients!


  • 1 cup Nutella
  • ½ cups Sugar
  • 1 cup All-purpose Flour
  • 1 whole Egg


Preheat oven to 350 F.
Blend all ingedients together well. Form into 1″ balls. Place on a cookie sheet. Press down firmly with the bottom of a glass. Bake 7-8 minutes or until set. Cool.
Easy peasy, right?  I made a few tiny adjustments -  brown sugar instead of white, and then I used half a cup of white flour and half a cup of whole wheat flour.  It makes me feel healthier.  I also added about a tblsp of almond milk because the dough looked pretty dry.  
These cookies are delish, and if you are on Weight Watchers - a whopping 2 points per cookie.  Yes, please!

And, just because I can - a gratuitous kiss the naked chef picture (heh):

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

I Will Bring Praise

I'm a phone screener.  I'm not proud of it, but I am.  I really hate talking on the phone and would much prefer an in person chat or a text if it's something that can be said quickly.

So, when I started getting phone calls from an unrecognizable Utah number, I decided to google it.  Turns out the number belonged to a company I used to work for when I was in college.  We would call people all over the United States to survey them about various things.  Yes, I suppose I was a telemarketer of sorts...only I never sold anything - just took surveys.  I got hung up on a lot as you can imagine.

So when the number popped up on my screen again the other night, I decided to see what this was about.  It was a nice girl (probably a college student like I was many years ago) who was doing a survey on behalf of JD Power and Associates for Carolinas Medical Center in Pineville, which is where I delivered Beckett.  We were just about to sit down for dinner, and I had been sitting in the Orlando airport much of the day - I was tired.  But, I also remembered how hard it had been to get people to take these surveys AND I remembered how great my experience was at CMC-Pineville.

I took the so called "quick" survey, which of course was nothing but.  Todd motioned at me several times to come eat before the food got cold.  But still I persevered.  And when I was done, I told him theatrically, "You know, not enough people bother to take the time to praise companies when they do a job well done.  Everyone is quick to moan and complain, but when people do a fantastic job how many of us really show our gratitude?"  I felt proud of myself for taking SO MUCH TIME to praise the hospital, my midwives, the nurses on staff, the accomodations, the food (ok, not the food so much)...

And then later I got thinking - how often do I spend that much time praising God?

I easily spent 20 minutes on the phone that night with a complete stranger praising nurses that I will probably never see again.  Don't get me wrong, they deserved every bit of praise I gave.  But do I take 20 minutes out of my night to praise and thank God?

Driving to the airport that morning I had spent plenty of time talking to God.  I asked Him for smooth travel, for protection - I asked that He keep Beckett from screaming and crying.  I asked that He keep Beckett from having a huge poop explosion while we were cruising at 30 thousand feet.  I thanked Him for safe travels thus far.  I thanked Him that we had the means to take a trip to Orlando and spend 4 days there with friends...but it was no 20 minute praise session.

This was a little sobering to me - but motivating as well.  It can be hard to remember the praise when life is staring you down and around every corner is a hill or a mountain to climb - but I am so blessed and have so much to be grateful for.

Today, I praise God for a beautiful family, for healthy children, for my husband who works so hard to provide for us.  I praise Him for our incredible church who knows what it means to be the body of Christ here in Charlotte and throughout the world.  My blessings are many and my heart is full.

This is my prayer in the harvest
When favor and providence flow
I know I'm filled to be emptied again
The seed I receive I will sow

                               -Desert Song, Hillsong
Monday, August 8, 2011

Giveaway Winner!

Audrey - Jamie will be contacting you about your win!!  Thanks to everyone who participated!
Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Tasty Tuesday: Refrigerator Dill Pickles

Ok, this was on my to do list for Saturday, but that got pushed down to the bottom of the list.  And then I remembered that there is a fun little farmers market in our backyard (yes, pretty literally in our backyard...) and I could get some kirby cucumbers fresh from there to use.

I probably should have titled this blog Testing Tuesday because the cucumbers need to sit in the brine for at least a day, and up to a I have no idea how they'll taste.  But honestly, how bad can a pickle be?

I love pickles.

So, without further adieu -
Gather ingredients!  
1 quart kirby cucumbers
white onion, chopped
apple cider vinegar
garlic cloves, peeled
dill seed
sea salt
filtered water

Check out the full recipe by clicking HERE
 Ready for the refrigerator!!

I can't wait to try these and see how they turned out!  Thanks to my friend Jamie for passing along this blog so I could try my hand at pickling.  And since we're on the subject of my friend Jamie - make sure and remember to sign up for the giveaway. You can do that by clicking HERE.  Read the blog, follow the instructions and leave a comment there to be entered!  It's that simple!  She can make bigger sizes too, so if you don't have a newborn baby you don't have to feel left out.

(Also, how badly do I need a better camera??)