Friday, November 30, 2012

DIY: Holiday Stationery with Mod Podge

 ♫It's beginning to look a lot like Mod Podge Christmas!♫

I'm a lover of snail mail & I adore Christmas, so when I received a box of Mod Podge & Plaid (makers of Mod Podge) products to play with, I decided to create this Holiday Stationery Set. The set includes:
5 notecards, 5 envelopes, 10 pieces of writing paper, 5 address labels, 5 envelope seals & 2 fancy pens.


And, I admit, I originally spelled "stationery" wrong in that first photo. I had to go back & edit my mistake. Is it "a"? Is it "e"? I can never remember. Here's a trick: Let the "e" remind you of "envelope". 
There. Done. Never making that mistake again.

I also love a good ole crafty makeover. 
Sit tight while I transform this stark white bit of sadness into....


...THIS lovely collection of correspondence paraphernalia! 
Sha-zam!

 I chose the color scheme of green & silver,  coordinating everything around that.

Supplies:
•Blank envelopes
•Blank writing paper (I used plain computer paper)
•Blank notecards
•Blank mailing label stickers
•Ugly pens (more about that later)
•Scraps of gift wrap or scrapbooking paper
•Mod Podge (in matte or regular or glossy--doesn't matter)
•Sparkly Mod Podge or Plaid Folk Art Extreme Glitter in Confetti
•Mod Podge Rub-On Transfers
•Plaid Folk Art acrylic paint in Holly Leaf (green)
•Plaid Folk Art metallic acrylic paint in Aluminum (silver)
•Mod Podge Dimensional Magic with silvery glitter (not pictured)
•2 foam brushes
•Small paintbrush
•1" circle paper punch
•Holiday stencils


NOTECARDS & ENVELOPES:
I chose 5 different stencil designs for each of the 5 notecards, but you could definitely choose just one design.
Use your green acrylic paint + the foam brushes to stencil onto your cards. When stenciling, don't use a LOT of paint, or you'll have a goopy mess all over your cards. Lightly apply the paint until you get the intensity of coverage you desire.

When the paint is dry, apply Sparkly Mod Podge to all or some of the painted areas. 




While you're at it, embellish the corner of each of the 5 envelopes, using paint & stencils.
**After this project was all done, I realized that including 10 envelopes would make more sense. Which means, you'd need to make 5 more mailing label stickers + 5 more envelope seals also.


WRITING PAPER:
Cut your paper to size, using the envelopes as a guideline. I like to make the paper wide enough to fit in the envelope, & long enough to have to fold in half only once when mailing. Punch out circles from your gift wrap & apply to the edge of the paper using Mod Podge. I had this fantastic vintage green & silver foil in my stash.


The Mod Podge Rub-on Transfers are AWESOME! They are filled with words & phrases having to do with TONS of holidays. I picked out my favorite Christmas-y words & applied a different one to the top of each piece of writing paper. (5 pieces of writing paper were left blank + 5 pieces were embellished with all the goodies, for a total of 10 pages of writing paper in the set.)



MAILING LABELS:
Apply the smaller sized rub-ons to mailing label stickers. 


ENVELOPE SEALS:
These were my favorite part of the stationery set. I played off the whole "wax seal" concept & created stickers to adhere to the back of the envelopes when mailing.
Punch out 1" circles from the mailing label stickers. I punched out mini stars in the green foil & glued them down in the middle of the stickers using Mod Podge. Then, apply the silvery glitter Dimensional Magic over the whole circle. These have to dry for several hours. The Dimensional Magic dries clear. (The picture below shows the seals "cloudy", due to the fact that the product is still very wet.)


 FANCY PENS:
Our church has tons of promotional pens, so I used a couple of them for this next project.


 When I applied the 2 coats of Mod Podge to the pens (in step 4) I used Sparkly Mod Podge to give the pen a bit more pizzazz.
(I originally had pencils in the stationery set mix, but I nixed that idea - thinking the paper & Mod Podge might destroy the pencil sharpener.)


 And there you go...holiday snail mail happiness!
Wrap it up & give it as a gift (you could even include some holiday postage stamps), or keep it & write your own sentiments to family & friends.


To keep up-to-date on all types of Plaid crafty goodness, find them on FacebookTwitter, & Pinterest.

I wrote this post as part of a paid campaign with Mod Podge, Plaid and Blueprint Social. The opinions in this post are my own. 

More Mod Podge inspired holiday projects can be found here:

 



Monday, November 26, 2012

Week in Review: November 19-25

Last week I...
...got a new prezzie: an iphone!!
...drank chai.
...went to Lincoln with the fam to spend Thanksgiving holiday with Susan & her family.
...took the littles to the dentist. And then laughed & laughed as they tried whistling with their numb lips.
...played way too much "Angry Birds".
...bought happy socks at Target.
...got to shop at a craft store! (There aren't any in my town. Sadness.)
...knitted with double pointed needles for the first time.
...ate way too much pumpkin pie. Wait. That's not possible. 
...washed  heaps of dirty dishes.
...took jumpy photos until my legs ached.
...helped with Turkey Day prep in the kitchen.
...hunted for chicken's eggs.
...patted a horse.
...talked to bovines.
...jumped on a trampoline.
...made taco salad with friends.
...watched "Beasts of the Southern Wild". 
...watched the Mr. rearrange the furniture to make room for the Christmas tree!
...made cheesecake from scratch for the first time.
...snapped photos to my heart's content.
...watched the Mr. shoot guns.
...had a happy time being with my Susan friend.

Click HERE for a photo play-by-play.
♥ 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

DAY 24 & 25 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

These next two days were about the littles putting kindness into action...

Day 24
We had some friends stay with us over the weekend. We all took a trip to Walmart & split up to get ingredients for a super duper taco salad feast we were going to make.
Upon exiting the store, I realized that I hadn't done my kindness act for the day. So I got the littles involved. I asked them to return every spare grocery cart they saw. It only ended up being a couple, but hey, it's all about the spirit of the action.

Day 25
The littles surprised the Mr. & I by cleaning the shed out back. 
They tidied the heck out of that thing & were so proud of themselves. 

Cyber Monday Sale

Avoid the holiday shopping crowd + purchase something handmade!
A total win-win.
25% off EVERYTHING in the shop on Cyber Monday ONLY!
Enter coupon code CYBER25 upon checkout, to receive discount.
Any questions? Feel free to message me!

(I'll also be adding a few new items throughout the day.)


*A trio of gift tags will be included in every order!*


Friday, November 23, 2012

DAY 23 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

We're all unpacked after our Thanksgiving holiday with friends in Lincoln.
While I was getting all settled, the sweet Mr. ran to Walmart to pick up some easy-peasy dinner. (Lasagna, garlic bread & salad. Mmmmm....)
I handed his sidekick, Zoey, some dollar bills. She dropped them in the dollar toy section for some little kids to find. I loved that I could pass her the kindness baton & she could exercise a random act of kindness.

DAY 21 & 22 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

On Wednesday, while making a dreaded last minute ("day-before-Thanksgiving-am-I-crazy-or-what") trip to Walmart before heading out to Lincoln for a quick little couple days of fun with my Susan friend's family, I happened upon a lady in the parking lot putting her grocery bags into her vehicle. I kindly offered to take the cart for her. She replied, "That's one way to recycle!" Well, if she wishes to compare kindness to recycling, then so be it.

I had a GREAT Thanksgiving with the Mr. & the girls, & Susan, & her fam in Lincoln! Susan & I wandered the property on the farm, stopping to say hello to the cows, the horses, the cats, the dogs, the chickens & the roosters. We snapped oodles of goofy pics. We took jumpy photos until our legs hurt. We watched the fellas shooting guns for sport. We helped the ladies cook. We knitted & knitted & knitted. And then, as all the house was pretty much almost asleep at night, we looked into the kitchen & saw a GIANT mess of all the Thanksgiving dishes & pots & pans & tubs & plates & utensils all over the counters & stove. 
And we decided to clean it all up.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

DAY 20 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

The fam & I live on a busy street. We've never lived on such a busy street. It's kind of fun.
The sound of loud trains that sometimes shook the house at our last place of residence has been replaced by the sound of traffic zipping by our front yard.
We get all kinds of peeps walking, jogging, & taking a leisurely stroll on the sidewalks out front as well. I decided that a sidewalk message would be a very appropriate & random act of kindness on this fine, sunny, 70 degree day.



Week in Review: November 12-18

Last week I...
...yarn bombed a STOP sign into a flower!
...got to spend most of the weekend with my friends Susan, Sarah & Randy.
...started rising early in the morning for some quiet time with God. (I am NOT a morning person, so it is a definite sacrifice.)
...had to go to the hospital ER. (I feel so much better. Thank you for your messages & comments of well-recovery & healing!)
...attended the evening service at the Minister's Wives Retreat in Lexington, NE.
...received a cherished letter, written to me by the Mr.
...sat on the couch most of the week. (And am grateful for the Mr. who took care of everything!)
...was introduced to THIS on youtube. I laughed so hard & immediately watched every single episode.
...had a quick solo visit to the library.
...knitted in a coffee shop & pretty much felt awesome.
...did some watercolor painting.
...received happy flowers made of pink & glitter & smiles.
...ate the most amazing pulled pork, homemade in my crockpot. Link to recipe HERE.
...opened up my email to find videos of my twin nieces & their older sister doing armpit farts. Best ever.
...played with bubble bath bubbles with Pazely.
...had about 30 guests in my home, & I wasn't even here. (Some of our peeps from the Western Nebraska Youth Convention.)
...seriously had the best, most relaxing, laughter-filled, weekend ever.

Click HERE for a photo play-by-play.

Monday, November 19, 2012

DAY 19 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

I got an iPhone today. Which meant I played Angry Birds, & facebooked, & took photos all evening, & face timed with the Mr. when he was upstairs & I was downstairs, & I texted my mom, & commanded Siri  (the electronic lady in my phone) to set my alarm, find a restaurant, sweep my floors, & search for words I couldn't spell. (She wouldn't sweep.) 
That's all I did all night.
If you've ever had a smartphone & then it broke & you had to resort to a dumb, stupid flip phone, then you know the pain I've been going through. I am a happy girl right now! The phones were a gift to the Mr. & I & I squeal every time I think about it.
Yet because of all this phone hullabaloo, I was a selfish brat today & didn't do one random kind thing.
I racked my brain to try & come up with something. Did I do anything good & random?
No, I couldn't think of one thing.
The end.

Seriously though, the giving project this month is making me learn a whole heckuva lot.
Giving takes effort. And sometimes I don't have effort.
But what I do have is Angry Birds. 



Sunday, November 18, 2012

DAY 18 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

On my trip with Susan to see our friend Sarah, one of the OTHER things we did (besides yarn bomb & knit & hang out at a coffee shop & eat at yummy restaurants & go to a movie at the nonprofit/volunteer based World Theater) was to go to Target. I haven't been to a Target in over 3 months.
It was so much fun!

My random act of kindness today involved bringing prezzies home for the littles.
I had a heyday scouring the dollar bins.
Wheeeeee!!!!!


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Day 17 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell


This weekend I was able to spend a big chunk of time with my friends Susan & Sarah. Susan, from Bridgeport, drove 2 1/2 hours to pick me up in North Platte, & then we drove a little over an hour to see our friend Sarah who lives right outside of Kearney, in Odessa, NE.
And one of the things we did on our super fun girlfriend hanging out time was: yarn bombing. Susan brought along a long scarf-like piece she had stitched up, while I brought two leaves I knitted. 
We found our target: a STOP sign near a railroad track, along some country road. It might seem like a bit ridiculous to yarn bomb in the middle of nowhere. But we figured the country-folk need to smile too. And besides, it was in a very convenient location where our sweet friend Sarah would be able to see it everyday. And smile.

Under the veil of darkness, illuminated by the car headlights, we quickly stitched the stem & leaves onto our "flower". (A train even rumbled by during our secret knitting episode.) 

If randomly making people smile is not an act of kindness, then I don't know what is.



Friday, November 16, 2012

DAY 16 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

At most Walmart's, I do believe, there is a Game Play Place Thingie. Never fails: every time I'm standing in line, waiting to make a purchase, the girls ALWAYS ask, "Mom! Do you have any quarters for the game play place?" And 9 times out of ten, I don't. Or I do, but I won't let them spend the quarters. (I'm a mean mom.) 
But I've been saving up my quarters.
Today when we were standing in line at Walmart, the girls were casually looking at all the tiny little merchandise on the shelves that appeals to their very age of peoples. Things like miniature flashlights & Polly Pockets. And plastic tubs full of wee Oreo cookies.
And by random surprise, I handed each of them 3 shiny quarters. They were ecstatic! 
The black rubber stretchy skeleton, the pink plastic teddy bear the size of my thumb, & the 2 failed attempts at the toy "claw" machine were worth every cent. Apparently. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

DAY 15 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

 I finally got a good one in!!
After two days of resting on the couch in my little nest, it was time to get out & do some quick errands. Still feeling a bit of discomfort, I knew I couldn't be out long.
First, a trip to the post office to deliver orders from my etsy shop. (Can I just tell you how giddy it makes me feel to sell my knitted postcards? Totally a day brightener.)
Then, I had books to drop off at the library. (And fines to pay. Ugh.)
I knew I also wanted to make a "Finders! Keepers!" drop while at the library too, so I packaged up one of my bottle cap badges. 

I wrote up a quick tag to put with the badge. 
(I know, so un-creative & un-fun. I was in a hurry!)
But it was SUPER fun to make the drop & spread a little kindness!

 ♥

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

DAY 14 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

Every Wednesday the Mr. & I trade children in the afternoon. After school, the girls do their homework & have a snack & do any chores they might have around the house, plus their checklist of  To-Do's. Then, daddy comes home from work/church to pick one of them up. One of them gets to hang out with daddy for a few hours,  & I get to hang out with the other kiddo at home until we drive together downtown to join the rest of the fam for church.

Tonight it was my turn with Pazely. And, since I'm not feeling so hot lately, I decided to stay home from church. Pazely decided to stay home too & keep me company all night.
Pazely & I were looking forward to doing the activity we had been planning for the past few days: letter writing. She brought my letter writing box down from my bedroom & was so excited to look through it. She felt so amazed that she was allowed to choose any of my stationery or notecards to write letters with. She wrote a letter to her cousin, to her Mimi (my mom), & to her G.G. (my grandmother). And she felt like she hit the jackpot when she unearthed a hidden stash of my favorite stickers. So, naturally, each letter she wrote was half covered with stickers.

While penning thoughtful words to our loved ones, we watched "Say Yes to the Dress" Atlanta. Then she dressed herself up in all pink & white fanciness, complete with a new tiara I was gifted. She did her hair Pippi Longstocking style & told me that's how she is wearing her hair tomorrow. I'm so proud of her confidence, yet hid my giggles. (If she can pull it off tomorrow, then I really feel like she can accomplish anything in this world.) While I ate toast & applesauce, I heated up her dinner of our usual traditional Wednesday night: TV Dinners. While I made Thursday's school lunches for the girls early, she sang me all the verses to all the songs of her upcoming Christmas school musical. 
Being at home all day is not the worst thing ever, yet it really cramps my style with this whole "kindness act every day" thing. 

But my heart really just melted when, suddenly, Pazely stated, "Mom! I did one of those kindness things today." She explained that this morning daddy dropped her off at school, but not Zoey. (Zoey had an early appointment at the orthodontist.) Last night, Pazely & Zoey had filled out a bunch of paperwork for a school fundraiser they were participating in & they were supposed to be turned in THIS morning. The kids at school were told that if they turned in their paperwork by today's deadline, they'd get a rubber happy face ring that lit up. Well, Zoey wasn't going to be at school THIS morning due to her appointment at the orthodontist. Which meant she wouldn't get a prize. So, Pazely told me she took her sister's papers into the office so Zoey could get the ring. She said, "I didn't want to, I was kind of nervous. But I felt good after I did it."
Isn't that just so precious?

My heart is full of happy.

DAY 13 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

Ok, so I thought on Monday I was a kindness slacker?
Yesterday pretty much beats that.
I'll try not to go into too much detail...

I woke up at 1 in the morning with severe sharp pains in my lower abdomen. Several hours of dry heaving, internal bleeding, nausea, & emotional bouts over "the white throne" later, the Mr. took me to the emergency room. (I even woke up a scared little Zoey with my loud bathroom noises. Poor sweetie.)
At the hospital I had blood tests & an IV & pain meds & nausea meds & a CAT scan & humiliating exams.
It turns out I have colitis {sometimes also called colonitis}, an inflammatory bowel syndrome.
Good times, huh?

I'm currently taking antibiotics to try & figure out if it's actually a temporary gig, like a virus, or if it's something more serious, where I'll have to take meds every day & deal with the uncomfortable pain & spontaneous sudden need for a restroom & stuff like that for the rest of my life.
I'm praying & hoping that these 10 days of antibiotics restore my colon to its former glory.
We shall see. I'm currently extremely uncomfortable & trying to take it easy. It's very hard to take it easy though. My poor house has been neglected for the past few days, & it is very noticeable. I found out today that even a simple task such as emptying the dishwasher sent me over the edge. So, I shall really try the relaxing route.
The Mr. has been BEYOND helpful, letting me get my rest & taking over with the girls. But he is exhausted & I can't stand to not be doing my part. I'm trying to do as much as I can from my "nest" on the couch. 

Dry toast & warm applesauce seem to be the only things that satisfy my appetite. I'm afraid to eat anything that might unsettle my insides even more than they already are. And, to be honest, & however weird it sounds, I'm just flat out afraid to go to the bathroom.

Soooo, I hope you aren't uncomfortable after reading all that.

I do have a lot of understanding support in my dad & sister, who both have different forms of IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease): ulcerative colitis & Crohn's disease. I'm definitely getting some perspective {in small detail} of what they go through every day.

Anyway, just wanted to let you know why I hadn't been around for the past couple of days.

And since I have no kindness to show, yet again, I will express my thanks to Dr. Smith, & the Physician's Assistant whose name I can't remember (who was awesome & took care of me most of time & who wins the award for finding the sweet spot in my non-existent veins), & the nurses, & the techs, & the two guys who wheeled me through the halls of the hospital on my bed. And to the chaplain who visited me, who happens to be a friend of the Mr. & I. Even to Debbie, who registered me. I am grateful for being taken care of by the people at Great Plains Regional Medical Center. I hope I never have to see you all again, but you're awesome.



Monday, November 12, 2012

DAY 12 GIVING THANKS: Show & Tell

I've been a kindness slacker.
But let me explain.
Day #12 had me in a fairly solemn mood. Just a lot of reflecting & stuff.
I didn't get out, I spent all morning & afternoon inside the house. It wasn't a bad thing. I was just being an uber mellow homebody on this particular day. 
I wasn't extending my hand of gratitude at all, though not intentionally. 

In the evening I was able to go to a service at the Minister's Wives Retreat in Lexington, NE. I was so grateful to be riding along with a lady from my church. Otherwise, I probably would not have gone. Unfortunately we weren't able to attend the whole retreat. But just that one service was so uplifting. There was a time of singing, & all the ladies voices together just sounded so lovely! The speaker shared her personal story of heartache & forgiveness. And I was filled with extra thankfulness for my own story. The service was a chance for me to get away. I haven't left North Platte since we moved here 3 months ago! Before I left, my children were hanging onto me & saying, "Please don't leave mommy! We want you to stay!" I knew I needed to go. And it was so good I did. 

All the ladies at the retreat received a beautiful wooden box labeled "Cherished Letters" on the outside. When I got home at 11 at night, all my family was asleep. I opened the box & found a letter inside from....the Mr.?!?! I read the letter. The Mr. acknowledged every good thing he felt about me, as a wife & a mom & a creative soul. I was in such shock & surprise. A warm feeling washed over me. It was a beautiful gift that I will keep forever. And I plan on reading it a lot. 
I climbed into bed that night & was so overwhelmed with how much I felt the kindness that day: The courtesy of a car ride, the blessings of being surrounded by other ladies in worship to the Lord, & the gratitude of a thankful Mr.
It is such an honor to feel this way & I'm tickled to be on the receiving end.


Walter

I first saw Walter at church yesterday morning. Towards the end of worship practice, a gentleman came into the sanctuary & plopped down on the front row. (It was Walter.) That particular morning the band consisted of me on the piano & lead vocals, Brandon on the acoustic guitar, Slater on the bass, & 70-something Ardelle, alongside Merry, as background vocals. I am most certain Walter thought he was at a concert. 

Walter wore a puffy orange coat which, I could tell, was not as vibrant as it once was. He had a scruffy face, dark, tan & worn. I'm guessing he was in his late 50's. And just by watching him for a few moments, he always seemed to be in a hurry: talking fast, moving fast. I even saw him introduce himself to the same person several times.

At my first meeting, Walter asked if I wanted to play the piano for Lynyrd Skynyrd, the American rock band best known for popularizing the Southern hard rock genre during the 1970s, with signature tunes such as "Sweet Home Alabama" & "Free Bird". 
"Sure," I replied, 100% positive he was not serious.
Walter told me that it might be a few years before he could get the band together. OK, so I was now 94% sure he was not serious.

And then Walter started telling me about all of the possessions he owned in his little apartment, which wasn't much, including a $200 stereo & records like Led Zepplin &, you guessed it: Lynyrd Skynyrd. "Rock on!" I said to him. Walter, I could tell, was a lover of "the driving beat". Even his movement was less determined & more convulsive, like the rhythm that might seize the front man of a band. He was just here & there, stage left, stage right, with the rock-n-roll in his soul.

I also learned that Walter works at a local bar in town, sweeping the streets outside the business & doing janitor-type stuff there. His payment is in the form of mugs. He says he got two mugs & his wife got one. But they won't give him any more. I told him, "You need a complete set!" Later I learned that they were not, indeed, the sort of cute little coffee mugs I was picturing in my head. They were mugs of the beer kind. Steins, to be exact. I just didn't put 2 + 2 together. Well, still, a complete set is nifty to possess, no matter the style. Walter works at 12:30 in the afternoon & likes to be at work 30 minutes early. 

Walter paused to compliment my new boots. And then he tried finding the cup of coffee he left on one of the tables in the cafe. I suggested he try the new Vanilla Caramel creamer I had purchased. But he said it's bad for his teeth. And then he reminded me about joining the band. Walter is totally serious about this.

It was just after 10 AM, & Walter was already feeling the urgency to head to work. 
Before he left, Walter started playing the air piano for all the people that were sitting & chatting & sipping hot drinks. He was jamming on his imaginary instrument like no other. He rocked out on the higher register, singing some song about "girls in a topless bar".
My face turned red. Very red. 
And my eyes got wide. Very wide.

On his way out the door, he bid farewell to the Mr., tossed off his cap & stated, "I just got a new haircut!"

I like Walter. Because he is real. And I love that Walter was singing inappropriate songs in "The House of the Lord". Because he doesn't know any better. And I love that Walter felt comfortable enough to step foot into the building. Because it gave us a chance to befriend him. In my mind, every Sunday morning should be like this one.

Three years is a long time. But if Walter has anything to do with it, in exactly 36 months I'll be rearranging my schedule & accommodating my lifestyle to begin touring with the band.
Ardelle suggested that I better get some sheet music right away & start learning the songs.


Week in Review: November 5-11

Last week I...
...baked eggs in the oven. (Pinterest idea. I pinned something AND made it---all in one day!)
...made sweet potato hashbrowns.
...tried not to panic as my girls sat down to make glorious Christmas Wish Lists. (Is it that time ALREADY!?!)
...made s'moreos in the fireplace.
...voted with the Mr.
...played with liquid chalk markers. (FUN to the MAX!)
...slept in until 8:15 on Saturday morning. (Are you jealous? Or laughing at me?)
...decided it would be fun to have THIS.
...had a "sick" Zoey home from school one day. Minutes after arriving home she was squealing while playing Wii. Her minor tummy pains were prolly not enough to keep her home, but it was fun to have my Zoey-time.
...ate at Pazely's Diner. She gave me free blueberries & a cupcake & a cookie with my order.
...watched my girls smash rocks with a hammer most of the weekend.
...found a new favorite restaurant in town: Tempura Japanese.
,..played checkers with Pazely.
...got pretty tickled when 3,500 people saw {& 178 people 'Liked'} THIS facebook post. 
...got a new owlie mug. Cutest ever. (Walmart Christmas section for less than $2!)
...made hot lemonade for the first time ever. Zoey loves sour flavors. It's her new favorite cold weather drink!
...finished reading On the Way Home to the girls, a diary by Laura Ingalls Wilder on her journey with Almanzo & Rose from De Smet, South Dakota to Mansfield Missouri in 1894.
...ventured into reading the first book by Laura's daughter, Rose: Let the Hurricane Roar. The girls & I just hate to let the spirit of Laura go...
...continued in the Giving Thanks: Show & Tell series. 
...watched {& thoroughly enjoyed} the documentary "Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey".
...ate at Cold Stone Creamery.

Click HERE for a photo play-by-play.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

DAY 11 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

Lately Sunday afternoons are for eating out for our fam. After church we hop in the car & decide where to go. Today we invited a gentleman at church to go with us. In fact, he recommended the place. A Japanese restaurant just one block over from the church. I'd never been there before & now it's my new favorite place.
After we all thoroughly enjoyed our meals & munched on fortune cookies, the girls distracted our friend while the Mr. went up to pay. Even though we agreed to each pay for our own meal, the Mr. snuck in some kindness.
It's so fun when you can eat with chopsticks AND be kind...at the same time!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

DAY 10 Giving Thanks: Show & Tell

Today I let someone go ahead of me in line. The girls & I were standing out in the freezing cold at a Redbox, waiting to get a movie. There were two Redboxes outside of Walgreens. We were standing in front of the one that worked. The other one was being dumb. A lady showed up to return her movies at the dumb one. It didn't work. So I let her go ahead of me.

That might not seem like a big deal.

The other day I was standing in line FOREVER at a grocery store, waiting to get my groceries rung up. I was standing in line for a very long time. And the line wasn't going anywhere. Some lady 3 customers ahead of me was holding up the line for who knows what. The line literally wasn't moving. It was torture just standing there. Two different customers came up behind me. And they waited for about 5 minutes. Suddenly the lane next to us opened up & the cashier glanced behind his shoulder & said, "I can help someone over here!" The two ladies behind me DARTED quick as lightning to the newly opened register. Seeing as my line was not moving, I wheeled my cart to the newly opened line as well. And I just stood there fuming inside. Were these ladies for real? If they knew they were standing there for 5 minutes, wouldn't they stop to think that maybe someone in front of them had been there, um, LONGER???? How rude. Simply rude. I was not amused at the irony that I was now stuck behind THEM. So, believe me, I know the power of the simple act of letting someone go in front of you.
♥ 

Glorious Saturday

This morning I made French toast for brekkie. I ran out of regular bread, so I used hamburger buns too. After breakfast the girls made Christmas Wish Lists. Pazely, using her ever trusty stapler, attached clippings of toys from a catalog to her paper booklet, labeling each one with bright markers. Zoey opted to use full sentences, describing what she wanted & why she wanted it. She used a glue stick to adhere pictures under her sentences. 
And then it was outside for the two of them: To smash rocks with hammers. 
This activity was inspired by two little boys in Pazely's 3rd grade class at school. They smashed rocks together one day last week & then brought the halves & pieces to class to hand out to everybody. So funny & cute.
As soon as I found them both some protective eye gear, they were on their way to collect little pebbles & stones in the alley behind our house. They plopped on the cement in the backyard & then the smashing began. It makes me chuckle that they think it is SO MUCH FUN. (I just might have to try it with them.)

I heated up some warm drinks for my munchkins: hot cocoa for Pazely, & hot lemonade for Zoey. (Their taste buds could not be more opposite.)  
Later they played downstairs in the playroom/fire place room/family room. (We haven't decided what to call it yet.) Wearing a handmade apron adorned with cupcakes, & a real chef's hat I purchased a long time ago at a kitchen store, Pazely served up some tasty faux treats at her diner. 

And now the girls have lugged the art easel from their crafty closet & are making lovely creative messes.
And Barbies. I heard the word "Barbies".

I love these days when sisters are friends. It doesn't happen all the time. 
This is simply a glorious Saturday.

Have a happy weekend my friends!