Category Archives: creatively inspired

Meet me on the flip side!!

This sadly neglected blog has been abandoned, not for lack of love, or interest, or disinterest in writing.
I’ve begun a new blog: swellwithmysoul.com
I truly hope you’ll meet me there!
See you on the flip side!
Come swell with me…

Long Weekends are Good for the Soul.

squash

I had a nice loooong weekend.  It was a much needed break from work and I definitely took the time to relax and do some things that have been on my mind, and on the back burner of my “to do” list for quite a while. 

I have officially started my Christmas shopping.  I can’t share most of my finds because some special people read this little blog ‘o mine, but I will share these pillows, which I am so in love with, made by my extremely talented, and much-loved friend Cherry, whose Etsy shop Totally Cherry will be stocked with lots of beautiful pillows & pillow covers for the upcoming shopping season.  She is now offering 20% off for the month of October, so be sure to check out her inventory while it lasts!!!  Be sure to “like” on Facebook as well at Totally Cherry Blossoms.

Pillows!

It’s great to be friends with such gifted people.  While at the craft fair where I bought Cherry’s pillows, I browsed other items and was motivated to get my act together and start creating my own inventory from the ideas swimming in my head. 

I have been sanding some old wooden oars that are in need of some TLC.  I plan to paint and distress them to hang in the entry way of our house which is a lot of wall and in need of decoration. 

oars

I had a helper last weekend, and this weekend, he kept me going by picking me flowers.  Love him.

flowers

Sunday was a cloudy, rainy day.  I loved every minute of it.  Red and I had a few groceries to pick up after church, and on a whim (and with a little persuading by him), I bought two small pumpkins.  He couldn’t WAIT to start carving.  He decided, “I want to make a scary one.” I think he did a good job accomplishing it!  The only parts I helped him with were the top and the mouth.  He drew, and scooped and chiseled his pumpkin to become the amazing masterpiece you see below. 

Carving

I have been trying to be good about letting him do things on his own without as much guidance.  I have to admit, I was nervous about that little carving knife, but once I showed him how to cut, and to make sure to keep his non-carving hand out of the way, he was very good about following directions, and so focused.  It was really cute to watch.

glow

Roo was content to sit in his highchair and watch.  I brought out some new wooden puzzle rescue trucks that he hasn’t seen much of and that bought us even more time.   After the pumpkin fun (and by fun, I mean mess, but it was so worth it), we moved on to Play-Doh.  I thought Roo would love squishing it between his fingers and making different indentations with the tools I gave him.  I also knew that some would inevitably end up in his mouth.  One taste and he was totally grossed out.  Wish I got a picture of that!!! 

puzzle cars

Today it was just me and Roo.  I could totally get used to the stay-at-home thing.  <sigh>  I know the grass isn’t always greener…but it was pretty luxurious while it lasted.

After dropping Red at school, we went to Starbucks and got me a coffee.  Drove around and parked at the beach on the hopes that I would get a nap out of if him.  No such luck, but it was fine since my next plan was to go to Hobby Lobby for craft supplies.  I could spend hours in craft stores getting ideas and finding fun supplies.  If only my wallet would allow it.  I have signed up to be a room mom for Red’s class.  The first party is October 30th, for Halloween of course.  The kids will be painting pumpkins, and the other two moms are handling the supplies for that project.  I am in charge of a game.  After much thought, (and of course consulting with my dear friend Pinterest) I settled on Monster Bowling, as seen here. 

Image detail for -halloween activity for kids handmade halloween game for kids

Sadly, I don’t know who to credit for this image and idea, since the link is just a Yahoo search, but whoever you are – thank you!

Once Roo was napping, I began another project that is the cornerstone to all of the above craftiness that I am working on.  Since moving into our house in 2010, Mike has taken over the basement, with half as his workshop/storage space, and the other half, which is unfinished, as his man cave.  He has it made down there, complete with a bar, two TV’s, a beer fridge and lots of cool (though really “manly”) accessories, such as fishing poles hung overhead, license plates on the walls, sports paraphernalia, and many interesting artifacts that he has found through his years working for a marine construction company.  (Hence the aforementioned oars).  I’ll have to take a picture of some of the stuff he has.  Eventually, I’d like to move some to the main part of the house because there are some very cool antiques!  Anyway, my point, is that he has pretty much taken ownership of the entire ground floor.  But today, I carved out my own space and created a craft area – and I plan to eventually own one half of the room.  Ideally, I would love a little shed in the yard that has a power source so I can have a “studio.”  Mike, I know you are reading this – so consider it a formal request.  <wink, wink>

But even in the small space I have claimed, I have set-up my sewing machine, laid out all of my paints, organized my brushes and other art supplies, sorted through all of my ribbon spools and folded my fabrics.  Everything has a place…  My theory:  In sight, in mind.  It feels so good to have everything where I can see it, which will make it easier to start working. 

Back to the daily grind tomorrow, but this weekend has given me a renewed sense of energy and motivation…not so much for my current 9 to 5, but to come home to a new space, and begin to work on the stuff that renews my spirit and brings me joy – besides my fam, of course!  Love them, but the challange will now be to find a way to steal an hour or two to myself…  I think the basement is going to see a “play/family room” re-do in the very near future as well, so we can all enjoy it together.

Happy Monday!!  xo

PS – Linking up with Annapolis & Company!!

Weekend ramblings…

boat day!

Me and Roo

anchor up!

We’ll get to these pictures in a minute…

Over the weekend, as I got distracted while doing laundry (or distracted myself since I didn’t want to fold the baskets and baskets conspicuously waiting around the house), I meandered to my craft drawers. They are a disorganized mess (despite my last cleaning project) and as I began shuffling through them, organizing bits and pieces, odds and ends, winding ribbon spools, sorting, organizing and re-discovering, I began to think of all of the fun projects I should be working on, and the lovely little beauties that could be spun from my idle hands….especially when they are not busy folding laundry. And then I really got to thinking. I have plenty of plans to craft more, especially as I begin to think about Christmas gifts, and as the warm weather begins to fade to fall. So, stay tuned because I fully intend to step up this B (for blog of course, though it’s also my nickname for another bit of slang, and since my blog is a she, I’ll let you figure it out for yourselves).

HOWEVER…

Since yesterday was a gorgeous day and the last free weekend of truly free summer fun before school starts, I had to abandon the craft ship and board our real vessel. Boat day! Roo’s first time out did not disappoint!! As I snuggled him, he simply looked around, taking everything in, bundled in his life jacket which tends to creep up to his chin. Red and Mike were busy crabbing and fishing and guiding us on an adventurous journey up the river. The sun was high in the sky and it was warm, but not unbearably hot. I was happy to get my pale, Irish skin some color, even if it was red and resulted in more freckles. I love my freckles by the way. I love any freckles, and Red has earned a few more scattered over his nose this summer, which I think is just the cutest thing ever.

chillin'

crab pickin'

This would be Mike, pretending to have the crab pick his nose. Classy. Don’t worry, this crab was not harmed during the making of this photo, other than having a little less dignity when he swam back to his friends.

Jelly!!

Can you spy the jellyfish??

crabs

Too short.

It was a welcome outdoorsy day, since Saturday was a day dedicated to Red’s haircut and back-to-school shopping at the mall. The sole mission was to find him his sneakers. As I mentioned in this post, he had his heart set on “light-up sneakers.” Well, that was totally fine, until I tried finding them. You would think in a place that has no less than 7 shoe stores, we would have been successful…

I only had one requirement. They had to have laces, no Velcro. The last pair he had were Velcro, and that dang material begins to unstick after a while… Oh, and they had to not be ugly…ok, so two requirements. Um, have you laid eyes on some of the light up sneakers out there? Many have super-hero’s on them, like Iron Man or Spiderman, which a. he has no concept of who these characters are because he is far too young to watch the movies they star in, and b. it is my opinion that the damn marketing license for such characters drives the price up on an otherwise cheap pair of sneakers by about $10! I wasn’t paying $45-$50 on ugly sneakers that would unstick and he would probably ditch once he saw what other kids were wearing anyway.

So, after a day of schlepping the mall (both boys were actually very well behaved, and thank God for my mom’s help because Red insisted on riding the “electric stairs” {escalator} just for the sheer thrilling fun of it), we left with a buy-one-get-one pack of socks and two t-shirts from Gap Kids. And just to explain about the socks – I completely SPACED and let Red wear his Crocs that day, which if any of you are familiar, if these shoes are worn barefoot (because why would you wear socks with Crocs?) by boys who like to run around in dirt and have sweaty feet, the end result when said shoes are removed isn’t pretty. We’re talking feet caked in grime. Needless to say, we probably gave the poor teenager helping us at Foot Locker quite a disgraceful shock. I apologetically and immediately took him up on his “bogo” sock offer, which we needed anyway. Oh well, I love my bud, stinky, dirty feet and all…which by the way, we finally found really good sneakers for today! They don’t light up, but they are cool looking and functional and were in my price range. Score!

Oh, and today, we had a Mommy-Red date day!!! It began on a high note with the sneaker purchase. He was so excited-he wore them out of the store (obviously) and proceeded to run to every store we visited throughout the outdoor outlets that we were shopping at, because he said, they made him extra fast. We came home for lunch, and then went to the movies to see Disney’s Planes. It was a glorious, be-still-my-heart afternoon in that theatre. To have him so overjoyed with excitement for the movie, to see his reaction to all the previews, to have him randomly turn to me in the dark during the movie for a kiss, to hear him tell me he loves me…I wish I could have those moments every day…I’ll be re-living them in my memory for a while.

One more day off together…we meet his teacher tomorrow which will bring its own excitements, and then Wednesday is the BIG K DAY! New adventures await.

 

So now…
…until then
….. Ramble on!

hangin'

Teacher Gifts – “Lined Paper” Canvas Bags

teacher bags

I found the idea for our end of the preschool year teacher gifts from, where else? 

 Pinterest.

Have I mentioned my obsession with that site?

Here is the original source, found on the SunScholars blog – becaused I like to give credit where credit is due, and I am very inspired and thankful for the shared creativity of other mama’s!

tote bag

I thought these bags were adorable, and more importantly, easy for Red to create. I love personalizing gifts for people. More time, thought and meaning goes into making something unique and personal. I also like functionality – something that a person can actually use.

These canvas bags fit the bill.

Canvas Teacher Bags

While the original pin showed a cute hand drawn portrait of the teacher, Red was not into drawing stick figures for each bag. So we simply wrote each teacher’s name, and I had him sign at the bottom and draw a heart to show his love. I think they came out very sweet, if I do say so myself.  It was sad to say goodbye, but the bags were very much appreciated, just as we are appreciative of the last two years of teaching that Red experienced in pre-K.Making Gifts

Happy Friday!

Just because…

So, my bestie over at Kate’s Full Plate inspired me with her most recent post (above), and because I believe in this idea wholeheartedly, I wanted to share it.
It is my hope that it will prompt people to take the time to connect in a more intimate way (not thru social media) with the friends and loved ones that may have lost touch, and give the relationships that mean the most a little TLC in a sort of “Pay it Forward” kind of way…

I already have my special person in mind. Who will yours be?

katesfullplate

I’ve been reminded this week that it truly is a blessing to wake up each day.  I keep thinking about the fact that if today were my last day, I’d have a mountain of regrets. At first I considered all the things I never would’ve crossed off my bucket list – the places I hoped to visit or adventures I’d be proud to say I braved. But in the end, it doesn’t matter how many planes you’ve jumped out of or the number of countries you’ve travelled. Our lives are really summed up by the people we touch. Those that we leave behind are the only way to keep our memory alive.

Keeping in touch with people has never been my strong suit. I’m not good about calling just to say hi or reaching out to get together with friends. I have taken many relationships for granted and not tended to them like I should. I have…

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