...a place to illuminate one's creative potential.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Paper White Gifts

I love to force Paper White bulbs during the holidays and often give them to friends as a gift in the season.  I can make 12 pretty packaged up bulbs for about $34 dollars, thats less than $3 for each gift!

Rocks, bells, ribbon, and glass vases are all from the Dollar Tree Store.

Paper White bulbs are from a local garden center.

Put about 2 inches of rocks in the vase,
tie bell into ribbon around the vase,
place one bulb on top of rocks,
and add a tag.

I used brown craft paper cut into strips for my tags.
They say "Happy Holidays" on one end
 and "Just add water" on the other end.
 I curled the ends with a pair of scissors before slipping it under the ribbon.
I now have 12 great gifts ready to go!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Chapter 4: Thrill of the Hunt!

Chapter 4 of Inspired You by Marian Parson is all about the thrill of the hunt.  I don't want junk in my home, I want good stuff!  Real wood, with dove tail drawers, and character that comes with its age.  Trouble is that the really good stuff, when its new, is not compatible with my purse.  I learned how to treasure hunt from my mom.  She has the eagle eye for great second hand clothes!  I tend to scope out the home good sections at thrift stores.  Bless the day I discovered Annie Sloan Chalk Paint!  There has been a lot of trash to treasure weekends as a result of that great paint! (I haven't tried Marian's milk paint...YET!)

I get it...the value of the dollar that is.  Treasure hunting for me isn't necessarily just about finding something good for cheap though.  I enjoy the outing to the thrift and antique malls, the piddling around by myself.  I love the extra heartbeat when you see something you were looking for....I love old metal working mans lunch boxes and little bitty oil cans!   I love having $20 burning a whole in my pocket for that special treasure to take home.  That's my rule : $20 dollars or less for something I really love!  It is even better when the treasure also becomes a new creative project to do at home.

Chapter 4 reminds me of a post I did last July.  Treasure hunting may be genetic!
See that post here!

Monday, November 5, 2012

My imperfect home, Chapter 3

Ah ha moments abound in Miss Mustard Seed's book, Inspired You .  I have underlined eleven different passages in Chapter 3!

Page 61:  "...I was never going to have a bouncy seat in my house..."

There are just some things in our homes that just have to be there no matter how much of an eye sore they create. There will always be something.... for me its the dog kennel!  It is huge, it has their dog blankets waded up in the bottom, takes up one whole end of my sun porch, which is also my formal dining room.  Because it has gotten a bit cooler, there is also a portable radiator close by so they don't get cold at night.  You should see me trying to take pictures at just the right angle as to not get the kennel in my table scape pics for blogging.   On yes, the other eye sore and my husbands prized possession, is a road bike hanging on a hook on the wall ... in the same room!   How can I complain?  The biggest thing on that porch is a 12 ft farm house table that seats 12 people.  My husband made it for me last Thanksgiving....my prized possession!  I take great joy in decorating and redecorating that table.

I think I can overlook the kennel, and the bike, because my table on that sun porch is just perfect!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Inspired You, Chapter Two

In chapter two of Marian's book she writes about a "dose of reality".... I spend countless hours fluffing the house, making it look picture perfect, and then someone comes along and messes it up.

I was a fanatic about anything left on the floor!  I would go around and pick up anything on the floor before I went to bed at night.  I wanted desperately to wake up each morning to order, not chaos in my home.  We enter our home through the garage which leads directly into my sun porch and kitchen. Both of these rooms have a dining table and chairs which are the strongest magnets in the world for my family's STUFF!  I even tried setting the tables with place mats and dishes but what do they do......scoot them over and sit there stuff down!  My family room looks cute when the pillows are propped up and the lap blankets are folded and laying over the backs of the sofa.  That only happens if I am the one that does it!  My three little dogs certainly can't fold those blankets back up or knife chop those big Ikea pillows themselves!
Do you see him?  There is another one under there somewhere.
 This is real life in the family room!

When I was younger, I thought my house had to look perfect just in case someone came over.  Not very many people come over!  The older I get, I realized that the reason I do all that I do in my house is to make a home for my family to have refuge in.  A place to escape the hustle and bustle of the world.  To feel comfortable, to be lazy, to be loved unconditional in.  That means not being so uptight that their are five drums on the porch table, cycling gear hanging all over to air dry, important papers in places that are not for important papers, power screw drivers on the family room mantle, or dog toys in the kitchen floor.

My children are both away in college now and there is not as much mess to clean up as there use to be ... I miss the mess.
My boy is home this weekend!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Miss Mustard Seed Book Inspires

Chance, fate, God...

I was alone this week while my husband was traveling with work. I tend to roam around town, junking, etc. when he is away.  I found myself at LifeWay Christian book store.  I can not remember the last time I went into that store.....years most likely.   One of the first things I saw was Miss Mustard Seed's book.  I wasn't expecting to see it there.  Glad that it was and proud of the store!  Funny though, I had to tell the check out girl who Marian Parsons is and about her blog!

Home I went with a new treasure to read, absorb, and learn from.  Cover to cover in one sitting.  Laughed, cried, motivated.   Marian has presented the truth when it comes to how most of us must go about making our not so perfect houses into comfortable inviting homes.

I thought I would share my Ah Ha moments chapter by chapter as I go  through Inspired You the second time through.

Chapter 1:
 " I get giddy over room makeovers."  Yes I do!  It can start with finding that free chest of drawers on the curb!  The one that I pulled up the hill on hand trucks back to my house!

"I reached that moment in my life when I wasn't thriving.  I was churning through the routine of my day."  Been there, done that....about every three years there seems to be a moment like this and I realize that I did not have a creative outlet at the time.  Rearrange a room, clean something, make some small change in the house and my creativity takes shape again!

So what have I done today.....purged!  I have cleaned out a "catch all" closet, two drawers in the kitchen, and every single storage space and container in my art room!  The house is lighter and so is my spirit, creativity is bubbling, and I think I am ready to paint my home office , uhh...orange?!

Thanks Miss Mustard Seed!