Prayer Wall Project

Prayer Wall Project

When we first moved into our mini farm home, hubby brought me home an old large picture window frame. He thought it would be great for one of my photography or craft projects. I loved it! However, I couldn’t decide what I wanted to do with it. This window has leaned against the wall in our home oddly fitting in with the décor it was hiding behind. There it sat for going on 3 years.

Last week an idea popped into my head and I decided we needed a prayer wall in our home. Somewhere to post pictures of those we pray for, inspiration, big goals that seem unattainable, whatever fits. I wasn’t sure what this was going to look like, then one night a picture floated into my thoughts and it was the frame. And so, my prayer wall has taken shape.

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While cleaning the frame I became distracted by spider webs/nests. Took a few minutes to come back from my mobster mentality of killing anything spider related.  But I digress.

After cleaning the window (both sides), I hot glued mini clothes pins randomly across the glass. Next I printed some pictures I had that symbolized my prayers, and I printed them onto regular printer paper.

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Using some tags I picked up at a craft store at some point, I glued the pictures to the tags.

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I took some extra tags and wrote a few favorite scriptures. On the back of a couple of the pictures I jotted down my prayer.  Earlier a speaker at the bible study I attend gave us moms scripture cards.

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You can find those here. Those fit in perfectly.

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I’m kinda in love with this little project. Not too over the top, and fitting for my family.

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By the way, when I told hubby my window idea, he thought I was talking about the giant picture window that is the front of our house. I believe its 12 ft by 8 ft. the mental image makes me smile.

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Building a Baby Swing

Building a Baby Swing

So I’ve had a unique set of obstacles with this new baby that I didn’t have with the first. Now, with my eldest, I thought he grew so fast. He was always around the 90+ percentile for his checkups, but his weight stayed around the 60% mark. Mostly, he was tall. Now as a new/1st time mom, I thought he was a bit of a handful, but I also knew he was pretty easy, and I was lucky. I’d seen enough of other babies to know I had it easy.

Baby number two, now he’s still pretty easy, but takes a bit more entertaining. And this baby, really is a fast grower. He started wearing 18 month clothes at about 8 months. Luckily, he’s still in 18 month clothes, but the shirts can be a bit tight depending on the brand.

Initially I planned to buy him a Johnny Jumper to hang in our dining room area, but I was afraid he would jump right into a sharp corner. Instead I decided that a new swing would be good, plus this summer I will be able to move the swing and use it outside too. Baby had gotten to the point he had exceeded the weight limit on his normal swing! I thought the motor had gone out as every time I put him in I would look over a minute later & it wouldn’t be swinging. Nope, after closer exam, it just wasn’t strong enough to move him anymore.

I searched Pinterest, because odds are someone else had already had the idea. I found a couple good options. I ransacked my fabric collection. Canvas had been suggested, but I didn’t have a color I would want hanging in my house. I did however have some black fabric I previously used to reupholster my chairs, and leftover fleece from his baby blanket. Hubby had the clip I would want to use to hang up and take down the swing. All I needed was the dowels & rope. I followed this basic process/pattern.

Hubby brought in clamps and the saw, and then shortly after, he checked back in to see if I needed anything else, I got the “look”. You know the “see your projects always become my projects” look. Now I highly doubt the ¼ in I was off on cutting would really have made that big of a difference, but the part where I never considered marking the dowels to make sure the holes I would drill would line up definitely would have.

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Given I didn’t want to go back to the store; I was okay handing over the reins. I’ve come to accept that my projects become his projects, and I try to keep them small. But I am also developing a list of things I actually want to learn. I feel like I’ve learned some basics that may lead to not needing so much help someday. I may be old and retired, but someday I may finish a project start to finish all on my own.

Here is the final thing I learned in this project: Don’t wrap the rope decoratively on the swing. Baby will not leave it alone, and it won’t be cute, just chop the ends off & burn the tips to avoid fraying.

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Plank Photo Project

Plank Photo Project

Over this last year my sister has been slowly updating her home. As the sister, I get the privilege of being the main artist on her walls, and I try to make sure that whatever I give her won’t be something that is hung up out of pity. I prefer not to be the creator of the “look at that” art. The new look of her home is what I would consider rustic / country charm. She was interested in a print I did a couple winters ago, but I wanted to give her something more unique and fitting than a basic poster type print.

I saw an art print at Ranch and Home and really liked the reclaimed/rustic look of it. It seemed simple enough and of course I instantly thought “I can do that”. Sometimes I seem to have an inflated view of my abilities. But either way, I searched the internet (okay, let’s be honest, I searched Pinterest), and found a few posts on how to transfer pictures to wood. Again I thought, “see, can’t be that hard”.  So I make my list, take tips and tricks from a variety of “how to” blog posts, and set off to Lowes.

I wanted to make a plank board wall hanging, and I couldn’t find anything on how to do what I had in mind. I picked up a pack of wood planks, & some finishing nails (apparently my box of nails & screws is hiding somewhere with my hammer, and mutli-tool screw driver). I had some scrap wood I planned to use for backing, and hubby has clamps I could klepto (one of his auction finds – you can read about that here). I had the photo printed by Staples, I opted for the blue print option for printing. The best paper choice is as close to inkjet printer you can get.

As I start building the wall hanging for my project, hubby starts giving me the “you’re going to regret doing it that way” look and grunts. So of course, I respond with the standard “what?” To which he replies “where’s the wood glue?” You are using wood glue right?”

“Um, I wasn’t planning on it. Can’t I just push these together, and nail them to some boards so they stay together?”

“You can, but I wouldn’t. It’s not going to work like you think it is”.

This is where I remember his “your projects always become my projects” line, which in fairness, they do, but it’s because he is better at this stuff, and I tend to learn as I go.  But either way, I wound up going to Lowes for wood glue.

In the end, here was my process:

1. Line up planks as desired (here is what I bought). Then put a bead of glue in the grooves between each plank, and put them back as desired. Then clamp to hold in place for drying.

For diagram / printable directions click: how to – Wood Plank Photo Print 

2. Once glue is dry (the bottle will tell you how long it takes to set”, flip so the back side is up (choose which side will give the best result for your picture – try to choose the side with the cleanest surface- see step 3). Nail each precut support board approximately 3 inches in from the edges. The length will depend on the size of the board you choose to create.

3. Flip the board so it is face up. If there is any glue spots, try to sand them off, the ink doesn’t transfer well to dried glue.

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4. Coat with “Gel Medium”, it’s really called exactly that. I went into Joanne’s looking for this and really wasn’t sure what to expect. Here is a picture of what I used. Put a good coat on, think of paper mache, too much and the paper will get all nasty and tear, not enough, and the ink won’t transfer.

5. Put the print ink side down onto the boards, and smooth out wrinkles.

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6. Let dry overnight. If you’re in a hurry, you can wait just as long as it takes for the paper to be completely dry, but it’s similar to putting on a temporary tattoo, so if it’s not dry it will peal up.

7. Using a wet wash rag, scrub the paper off. I suggest getting a bowl, or small bucket of warm water, and have it sitting there to rinse the rag as you work. Another trick is to get the paper a bit extra wet like you would when putting on a temporary tattoo, and then try scrubbing. It seems to help pull the paper off better.

8. Once you believe you have all the paper off, let it dry, and re-evaluate. I had to go back a few times as paper would become noticeable again once it dried. The sky and light areas were the hardest for me.

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9. Optional: Once you are sure you have all the paper wiped off, coat with modge podge/ decoupage glue.

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Lesson’s learned:

  1. Ink won’t transfer onto wood glue
  2. Pencil will be seen through the picture – not sure how I didn’t notice it before moving forward and putting the gel on
  3. If you don’t get all the paper off, and then you coat it with modge podge, it will seal the picture, make the white paper EXTREMELY obvious, and you won’t even be able to sand that crap off. – start over
  4. If you want an exact image as you see when you took it, don’t forget to flip the image, otherwise it will be a mirror image
  5. When using the planks, keep in mind that there will be lines / gaps in your picture – placement may look funny depending on the print. You may not want lines / gaps through your loved ones face.

Print directions here: how to – Wood Plank Photo Print

Love of all things rustic

Hello all! It’s been a while since my last post, I’ve been seriously slacking. Actually life has been so hectic that things fell by the wayside. All my life craziness has apparently caught up with me, because now, with a baby due in April, I’m hanging out at home on bed rest. This is day 2, and do you know what there is to do on bed rest? SIT AROUND! Needless to say I’ve signed up for Netflix, and busted out embroidery projects to work on. The little things about living on my little farm that didn’t seem like a big deal before, are now feeling a bit restrictive. For example, until moving here I had lived in the town with the first fiber internet, boasted to be the fastest internet in the country. Do you know what I have now? Satellite internet that bounces off a potato shed a few miles away! Loading. Loading. I was once asked by a friend from the wet side of Washington if we had internet and phones and stuff like that in my area. I laughed and said, “Nope we jump up on the roof and yell from house to house”. Well, I may have been being sarcastic at the time, but I’m starting to feel that way with my internet. But it’s okay, Netflix still mails DVDs.

Anyway, that’s really not the point of my post today. Since I have time to sit and plan, I’ve been planning my schedule, and getting excited about this spring/summer. One of my favorite things coming up is the variety of vintage shows throughout the area.

When adding new pieces to my home I like them to have stories behind them. For example, Hubby and I had a little weekend getaway, and on the way home stopped at this cute shop in the little town of Reardan, and found this great desk. It’s not a monumental moment for us, but the desk is now something I see and remember our mini road trip weekend.

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Honestly I don’t remember much about the weekend, but I remember the quality time of our drive, and stopping at the little shops on the way home. I have a fun “sign” I found at the Vintage Faire in Okanogan, it was a fun girl’s trip with a friend I’ve had since middle school. The sign is made using an old seed bag from Othello. Although the seed company I work for is a town over, Othello is close enough that it was a little piece of history from my area I could incorporate in my home.

I’ve compiled a list of great events in the Eastern Washington area and most are coming up soon:

Antiques & things – April 4th at the O’Sullivan Grange hall between Moses Lake and Warden off Hwy 17

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The Vintage faire – April 25th (yearly, last Saturday of April) Okanogan Fair Grounds, Okanogan WAvintage faire

Farm Chicks – June 6th Spokane

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Love of Junk – June 12-13 Walla Walla

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Up-cycled craft room

Up-cycled craft room

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When we moved in back in May the plan was that this winter we (meaning I) would go room by room painting and designing/decorating. Now that winter is basically over I’ve actually started. As I mentioned in a past post, I chose to start with my office. The previous owners used this room as a small bedroom. I suspect it was last pained in the 90s as a baby’s nursery and never really updated. It was this awful two tone Pepto-Bismol pink (pictures don’t do it justice in the ugliness). Plus someone had filled in nail holes as if they planned to paint then never did anything else. The room really just looked dirty and pink. They even painted the light fixture.

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I started by pulling everything I could from the room. The desk was too big to remove unless I took it apart, so I opted to leave it in the room and paint it there given it was 10 degrees outside. The desk was a cheap find ($40) from craigslist a couple years ago for a temporary office for our landscaping business. I have not been able to decide on a desk for this room so until I do I opted to paint the desk to give it a facelift. Laminate is not a cooperative material to repaint, so I ended up using 2 coats of primer we already had, then 2 coats of black paint & primer designed for multiple surface types.  This I also had on hand from when I painted our dining room table.

Next I took on the floors. These floors are rough. They are original to the home, but it looks like the previous owners pulled the carpet and stopped at that. They have not been sanded or treated at all. Plus the boards have shrunk over the years, and it looks like there have been spills that the wood soaked up and left stains. I’m still not sure what I want to do with the floors, so I’ve started by washing them and treating them with wood oil. I used a few coats, the wood is so dried out it absorbs the oil like a sponge.

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Next I chose my paint pallet. I love teal so that’s where I started. I also chose a midgrade paint primer mix.  The first time I painted a room I was in early grade school and was painting apartments at the retirement home my grandma ran, and for whatever reason I love painting. I’m not a messy person when I paint, so I tend to tape off the edges and go. This time I purchased a paint sheet to cover the desk and few items stacked on top so I can set tools and a wet washrag on it without worry.

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Once the room was taped off I started with the main colors. I had to use two coats of the teal for proper coverage. I then let it dry for a few hours before working on the trim. I’m not a patient person so I opted out for letting it fully dry and re-taping before starting the trim. I used a medium size art paint brush for the trim portion against the wall, a larger brush for the main trim, and then for the flat portion on the chair rail I used a small roller.

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The final step was style and functionality. I chose not to bring back in the tall file cabinets. I had 2 short drawer sets from an old desk removed from my work office. These were already black, so that was an added plus. I also found a weird 80s wall shelf that was in a closet when we moved in. I ditched the heart shape portion and turned it into a table top shelf and added a rod for my ribbon spools. Then I found the different things that really symbolize me. I pulled my 1st SLR from its storage hideout and put it up for display. I also hung my favorite historical picture, and one of my own prints. I hung my 1st public art show award, and my sons T-ball pictures from last year. I left one wall open, and plan to pick up a large frame at Ikea and have one of my black and white prints enlarged for display. The closet has great storage, but it’s not pretty so I’ll be keeping the door closed.

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Overall I love my new space. The room update only cost me $180.00. Purchased supplies included: paint, rollers, tape, painters sheet, and a new light fixture.

Redneck woman, I ain’t no high class broad

Redneck woman, I ain’t no high class broad

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the first week that hubby is working out of town. Actually last night was the 1st night, and let me indulge you in the mess I made….

I get home from work all “I am woman hear me roar” like and I gear up to take care of the “farm” chores. Fairly nice out, a slight breeze, but not too windy. I should have taken a picture, but then I probably wouldn’t have shared given I looked like a goober. Here I am still in my office clothes, so I have my work slacks tucked into my mid-calf muck boots, they’re really cute as far as muck books go, I splurged on these cute Bogg boots. Anyway, so slacks tucked in, Carhart coat on, with my sweater hanging out underneath, and a pink hat and scarf. I must have been something to see. I’m going about the chores feeding and watering rabbits and dogs, no biggy. When I get to the chicken coop, I had to pause.

It totally freaks me out to have chickens above my head!

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I run in real quick covering my head with the bag I used to collect water bottles for the rabbits, check to make sure they have enough water, but of course the food is low. I run back out, and of course now that I’m taking care of the freaky animals the wind kicks up so now I’m fighting to keep the coop door closed to keep the dogs out, but still reaching in so I can fill the feed thing. Screw eggs! Hubby can deal with those when he gets home. I’m guessing they froze overnight anyway.

Now that I’m back in the house I let the dogs all in because the storm is getting bad. Plus my son’s dog is a wussy  who is scared of the dark and has been barking at the door since the sun went down. And is doing it again now, BLAH!

Anyway, so after the storm quiets down and I’m about to go to bed I figure, “hey, I’ll be nice and let the dogs out a minute to take care of business, maybe throw a stick for them”. So here I am in my socks & PJs standing on the front step yelling at dogs and thowing a stick, looking like some redneck momma, when I notice hubby’s hunting dog is MIA. So I go over to where I last saw him (in my socks) and yell for him. All of a sudden I see him act like he just got caught, and take off across the street! In fairness this dog doesn’t like me much, but hey, I was throwing a stick! So now I’m yelling at him to come. Dog looks at me and RUNS!!!! Seriously, in this I dare you to catch me style through the brush and mud. Like the redneck I’m currently portraying I start chasing him down the road, yes still in my socks! Its 30 out mind you, no coat, and socks. I make it about ¼ a mile down the road yelling at him. To make matters worse, we give our pets people names, so I’m looking like a crazed redneck running after and yelling at Hank. At this time I realize, wow I’m out of shape, and its dark and I can’t see anything. So I run back and try to find hubby’s spot light, wouldn’t that have just added to the picture. Couldn’t find it though, and I called hubby to tell him I lost his prized hunting dog. Again. But this time I feel extra bad, and I’m pretty certain I just sentenced his dog to death by coyote pack. Turns out, no, he went to a neighbors a couple miles over and they called Hubby.

So here I am lying in bed, sons asleep, and I’ve given up. I get a text from hubby to meet the neighbor man at the gas station a couple miles away.

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So in my no makeup, bed head, and dragging a half dressed kid from bed state of redneck, I head to the gas station to get a dog that hates me. Don’t worry this time I found a leash! No more running from me.  At this point, Hank has a permanent companion, the leash, and he is staying in the dog kennel.

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1 day down, 3+ weeks to go……

PS. Check out my projects page, I’ve added a few free printables. Project season is starting, stay tuned, I’m planning out my office/craft room space.

Mommy Ikey Day

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When I think back on my childhood there are a few things that stand out. One of which was Homestead Hunting. Basically this was my grandpa, dad, and I, driving around the county hiking out to old homesteads and taking pictures. One of the great things about the wheat farmers in the area was that they all had old farm houses or barns on their land somewhere and as long as they knew you, they didn’t mind you hiking out to take pictures. Well, as long as you were careful. Translation, don’t die on their property.

Now most of those old homesteads have fallen down, and the ones still standing I’m just not gutsy enough to go traipsing through with a 5 year old. But hockey, now that’s a thing a boy and his mom can bond over.

 

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This weekend was Mommy Ikey time. A friend and I took our sons to Chuck E Cheese and a hockey game. For me, hockey is the one sport I love, a bit barbaric maybe, but great fun. Turns out my son thinks it’s great too. I will admit I’ve had my moments of questioning the appropriateness of the sport for a young boy. The 1st game we took him to we sat right next to the penalty box and he harassed the opposing team members that got stuck in the box. At one point some of the players started to fight and my son jumped up and yells “fighting, yeah!” and throws a couple air punches. Turns out the weekend or so before my sister let him play a boxing game on Xbox Kinect. This time around he tells me he wants to play hockey too. He also says that he wants to get in trouble like those guys “I’d be great!” Hmmmm……

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The funny part is my son is very non-aggressive. He doesn’t fight with kids, and actually I’ve had to tell his daycare provider to not step in if he gets picked on unless it becomes bad, he needs to figure out to solve the issue or stand up for himself in some way. Now mind you, his tormentor is 2. Getting picked on means the 2 year old is sitting on him. He’s the negotiator. His cousin used to take his toys, so Ike would start playing with something random until his cousin would take it away and run off, then Ike would go play with what he was actually interested in. Or he would trade.  So the idea that my son finds the aggression of hockey fun doesn’t worry me as much as I feel like it should.

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By the way, I rocked the Red White and Blue – Go Tri-City Americans!

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The other great part of my weekend was the morning after our Mommy Ikey day. It had snowed a few inches overnight so we had our first family sledding. I think we may have taken him once as a baby, but this was his first real time of sledding. Thanks to my big sis forgetting their sled at our house we even had a perfect sled to use. Turns out an irrigation pond makes for a great sledding hill. Not too big, not too small, and not too steep. Hearing him yell from the bottom of the hill to go again just topped my weekend, and totally makes up for the lacking winter we’ve had this year.

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After Sledding we made valentines cookies. Turns out we didn’t have any powdered sugar, and the fake sugar we did have, well that doesn’t make great frosting. After my son heard me tell hubby that he wouldn’t like it, Ike starting making a huge fuss about how “dist-gussing” it is. Hey the dane obviously thought it was great, she ate the whole plate full, thank you very much!

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