Thursday, March 31, 2011

original artwork thursday

No sketching this week, I had crochet on the brain. I have been trying to come up with a headband pattern to sell at Myrtle's , and I think I have succeeded. So far I have only sold hats up there, and of course that means summer sales are nonexistent. As you can see I have created removable accessories
And I got to set snaps! This was such a fun project, inspired by Maybe Matilda's knotted headband tutorial. I did add the idea of snaps and removable accessories with the option to twist or knot as you see fit. I will be adding another set of snaps on the headbands so that they will fit kids or adults. And I made it a bit smaller in the width.
Wear 2 at a time!
Wear a huge flower on your noggin!
This green one is the headband we performed rigorous testing on. Snaps were new to me, so we pulled on it and snapped/unsnapped this one a whole bunch. Plus I wanted to see if it would stretch out so we pulled on either end and swung it around the room. It held up pretty well, SO this headband is mine now.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

sweet kiddos

Lydia's pineapple forest Toby goofing around in the kitchen Isaiah spelled these words :) Isaiah Lydia with her sweet new necklace (a birthday gift from her sunday school teacher) Chloe saying "cheese" I have about a hundred of these! She finds my camera, brings it to me and says, "cheese, cheese, cheese" until I take her picture.

Monday, March 28, 2011

why? just why?

After reading this post, I was inspired to show the truth of wallpaper. The stuff that actually ends up in houses (at least the 2 we have bought here in KY). There is no pretty accent wall or easy to take off new wallpaper. There are 3 layers of ugliness that were put up 40 years ago with superglue and then painted over. If I ever want to have a pretty kitchen there will be hours and hours of stripping and washing of the walls. We got a great deal on this house, so this is not actually complaining, just more of a wondering why and how this mess was made of our walls.

To start, we have a lovely rendition of a weekend at the lake. Including a woody station wagon and a log cabin that looks nothing like our house. This is the room that will go last when we start changing stuff. The wallpaper is the least offensive as it is neutral and the ceilings are higher in this room so you don't notice the border as immediately. This americana "angel" border makes me crazy. It's in my bedroom and every time I lie down, I notice the ugly that is this border. Note that is is atop navy painted wallpaper. If there is anything worse than wallpaper, it is painted wallpaper.
Next comes a lovely combo in the mud room -perhaps the most puzzling of all borders I have seen- dogs with bags of ducks. Are the ducks alive? Are they ducks that have been hunted? Are they wooden ducks? Why would they be wooden ducks? The wallpaper underneath would be bearable by itself.
Lastly, in the kitchen we have a gingham and pie theme. At least it's not confusing like the other borders, but this gingham wallpaper has to go! I cannot wait to rip it all out and paint my kitchen a lovely pistachio or aqua color. Just so not my style. Bad news here is that there are at least 2 layers of wallpaper in the kitchen, some of it painted over.

In the bathroom, which I'm not likely to show you anytime soon, there are layers of wallpaper covered in a textured paint. I think we're just going to sand the walls a little smoother and paint over it again. Better than trying to strip all that off of plaster.

It feels good to get this all out.

Friday, March 25, 2011

quick update

  • I have lost 7 pounds this week, for a total of at least 22 pounds lost (just a drop in the bucket really)
  • I can now wear jeans I haven't been able to wear for more than a year!
  • I have to clean my disaster of a house today. It's gross.
  • I have gone through bins and bins of clothes to organize them. It took days, but now they are organized by gender and size.
  • We disassembled and moved a wooden swing set/slide thing that Nathan found on craigslist yesterday. It was a great deal for us (only $50!), although it was pretty hard to move. We are excited to have a jungle gym for the kids to play on. We only need to reassemble it, which shouldn't take long, but now it's sooo cold that it will probably be a while before the kids get to play on it. Pictures will come soon!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

original artwork thursday

This week was more of a going through the wardrobe week and not very much of an artsy one. I did manage to fit in one sketch for today, plus I found a little something I worked on last week.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

yard treasure

makeshift clothesline across the deck

freshly mown yard
the first buds on our fruit trees

the last "flower in our yard after Lydia has picked them all

I'm so glad spring is here!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

five today

Happy birthday my beautiful girl! I can't believe you are five today!

It's not even ten, and we have already had a party! Balloons, presents, birthday pancakes (with sprinkles and chocolate chips) and her choice of movie on netflix have made for a great birthday morning. I hope she has a wonderful day :)

Monday, March 21, 2011

laundry in the tub

Have you ever heard of doing laundry in the bathtub? I read about it somewhere on the internet years ago (maybe here?), and this past week I decided to give it a go. If you want to give it a try, I highly recommend separating your clothes into 2 piles: dirty, and funky dirty. The funky dirty stuff goes in the washing machine while you wash the merely dirty in the tub. I also used this info.

Wringing it out and drying it was the hard part. Even after wringing, the clothes were VERY wet and took forever to dry on the line. Maybe running through the spin cycle would help, but then, what would be the point really?

In summation, I was really backed up in the laundry department, and this one "load" helped to nearly catch me up. It do not regret it and might possibly do it again in the future.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

low carb lowdown: low(er) carb tamales

Since we learned how to make them, we usually get the craving for tamales about once or twice a year. We use this recipe, halved, and this year since we are low carbing it we subbed 1 and 1/2 cups soy flour in with 1 and 1/2 cups of the masa. It was just the right amount for half of the recipe. It cut the carbs per tamale down to just under 4 and a half. I searched online for a low carb tamale recipe and couldn't find one, so here is my contribution to anyone who might search for such a thing. There was no discernable difference in taste or texture. Hurray for tasty tamales!

I demolished these like it was my job.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

are you up?

just howling at the supermoon.

garden update numero uno

Our raised beds are lined with landscape fabric and filled with Mel's mix, and ready to be planted in! It has been finished since last Saturday. It is a little more expensive than using a hoe to dig up the earth, but starting with mel's mix really cuts down on the amount of weeding we will have to do (practically none) and it never has to be replaced, only add compost when you replant. We totally think it is worth it. We will be working on making our own compost this year.

Now we're only waiting on the weather. Although it was 70 and perfect here yesterday, I'm sure there will be some freezing temps to come.

Here's proof that I actually helped.

We still have a lot of tilling to do in the huge garden box on the front of the house, and in two other places in the yard. If the weather stays this beautiful there should be no problem getting it done before the last frost date. We are also planning on starting our vineyard with a couple of grapevines this year. We will be following the vineyard instructions in The Backyard Homestead. I'm still trying to talk Nathan into berries this year, but I have a feeling it will be next year before we start those. The garden excitement is still building, as I'm trying to figure out exactly how much I need to preserve for the next year. All I know is that we need a boatload of tomatoes.

Enjoy your Saturday!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

original artwork thursday

We go together like peanut butter and jelly.

some weeds and wrought iron

more weeds

even more weeds and a partial view of my backyard

a lamp post downtown in a nearby small town

It was a good sketch week with lots of inspiration and encouragement. I'm excited to fill up a sketchbook for the first time. I'm still probably a few weeks away from that, but, trust me, I'll let you know when it happens!

If you have any craftiness or sketches, leave a link in the comments!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

the tale of the missing tooth

Big news here last night--- Isaiah lost his first tooth! His daddy pulled it and he was very brave. He woke me up in the middle of the night to show me the money the tooth fairy brought him. Yes, his new tooth is already in. It came in behind his baby tooth, but the dentist says his tongue will push it into place. i'm just thankful that there was no tooth pulling or any major dental work! It's hard to believe he's so grown up.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

a brief respite

An hour at this little coffee shop, alone, with my sketchbook and a great cuppa joe was just what I needed the other night. It was nice to draw without anyone pulling on my sketching arm. Everyone in my house (except, miracuously, me) still has a hacking cough and running nose, and I needed OUT! Graciously, my sick hubs told me to go on and he held down the fort while I blissed out. This coffee had me amped for hours, to the point that Nathan probably regretted giving me the go-ahead for coffee in the first place. I need a cup now to get me up and at'em. Since the time changed it seems like the day is half-over before I even get started!

Saturday, March 12, 2011


Here's hoping that your day was as lovely as mine.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

garden beginnings

This fence area is where we will attempt to grow pumpkins and watermelons this year.

This rocked off area will hopefully become a flower garden. I want to be able to cut flowers and bring them in all summer. We will have zinnias, gladiolas were here when we moved in, and about 20 other varieties that I can't remember right now. (the littlest pet shops and my little ponies will probably be removed prior to planting.)

This used to have huge ugly bushes in it, but it will become a square foot garden for most of our lettuces and broccoli, and other veggies that might need some shade.

And these will also be square foot gardens which will have tomatoes and peppers, beans, herbs, and others. The flower pots on the end will have marigolds and nasturtiums to keep the bad bugs away. Nathan hopes to turn the entire front yard into square foot gardens with flagstone walkways in between. One day he might not have to mow at all.

Nathan also planted 5 fruit trees that he moved here from the farm. I hope they transplant well and produce fruit in a timely fashion! We are also planning a bigger plowed up area for corn, potatoes, and possibly wheat or buckwheat. I'm so excited to get these gardens going. It has been a few years since we have been settled enough to get a garden planted and I'm itching to see things sprouting!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

original artwork thursday

a tree in my front yard
the last cookie, and the recipe (our favorite and healthiest cookie!) with a flower from a placemat that my great grandmother made.

our spice rack, and a variation on a hot pad I crocheted.

all taken with my new camera which Nathan picked up for me today!!!!
I'm still no photographer, but at least it's not so blurry anymore :)


  • I got my second ever paycheck for selling hats yesterday!!
  • My daughter threw a tantrum yesterday, the likes of which have NEVER been seen around these parts, resulting in her absolute incarceration for as long as she continues to present such an attitude toward her mother. This includes putting away ALL of her toys into big black garbage bags which she may not access, and taking away pretty much every choice she had before, including wardrobe, hairstyle, drink choice...
  • I tried to buy a camera yesterday at 2 wal-marts, but neither had any of the ones I wanted in stock. Then I left my purse (full of hat money) in the shopping cart and didn't realize it until I got home. I prayed to God that it wouldn't be stolen, and by His grace it wasn't. Someone returned it to customer service with *all* of the money still in it.
  • the sickness is upon us. A gross snotty coughing cold has invaded most of our bodies, making it difficult to do anything but hold sad sick babies (or waste time on the internet) while the dishes pile up, and the out of control laundry officially wins the war.
  • I am grateful that it's only a cold, that people will buy the hats I make,that God cares to answer what I perceive to be insignificant prayers, that we have clothes to launder, and that my daughter might come out of this with a lesson learned (please pray it is so!!). And I am grateful that yesterday is over, and that today is looking slightly less sucky.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Low Carb Lowdown

a terrible picture of our new "in home gym" ha!

This is my assessment of the low carb diet I have assumed since Feb. 12:

The first week was constantly searching, what can I have to eat? Open fridge, shut fridge, go to pantry, back to fridge, finally give up, or eat cheese and nuts.

The second week was a little better. I knew what I could have and anticipated for the next meal a little more.

the 3rd week was the best because it was grocery shopping week, so we knew exactly what to get.

Here is a typical day of meals:

Breakfast- 2 string cheese

lunch- salad with chicken and bacon, almonds, cheese and ranch

supper- taco salad without the chips (salad, cheese, taco meat, taco sauce/salsa)

snacks include strawberries, nuts of all kinds, a couple tablespoons of cool whip (1 carb per tbsp.), more cheese...

The things that have made it easier are:

1. low carb tortillas. we use them in place of buns, biscuits, chips, and pizza crust.

2. fitting in a treat every day.

3. diet mtn. dew. I know that it is so bad for me, but if I lose as much weight as I am planning to and diet mtn. dew can help, I'm willing to choose this vice (for a time) over sweets, bread, and pasta.

4. the fact that my parents, sister, and brother-in-law are all doing the same thing. When we go to my parent's for a meal we don't have to worry about a bunch of high carb temptations.

What makes it harder is that:

1. it takes forethought and preparation.

2. I can't have sweet tea :( (at least not the kind I am used to)

3. our restaurant options are somewhat limited, and in our small town, there aren't any good out food options. Which leads me to say...

Last night I ate chinese and dark chocolate. It was delicious and indulgent, and now I am right back on track this morning.

In total I have lost about 15 pounds and have been stuck there for several days. I believe this can work for me, and it's the first time I have ever had short term and long term weight loss goals. My husband and I are introducing yoga and cardio to the program too, so who knows? Maybe this can be a lifestyle change, like my mom keeps saying, instead of just a diet.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

original artwork thursday

As you can tell it has been a slow week in the art department. A couple of doodles is all I have really done. I had better get on the ball, because next week is my last week of sketch class and i would like to do something really cool/nice before the end of class. It has been lots of fun and I have gotten some great ideas.
Don't forget to leave a comment on this post to win some free original art!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Happy Birthiversary Toby

Happy 3rd birthday, Toby! It's hard to believe that you are so big! Your mischeif makes me happy and I love you so. :)
(please ignore the fact that this picture was taken right next to the mountain of laundry that never quits. I would have used another, but this was the only one of him uploaded onto my new laptop!!)
P.S. Don't forget to comment on this post to enter the giveaway!