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Friday, November 29, 2013

How Did You Spend Your Thanksgiving?

This month I have been making an effort to really pay attention to all the things I am blessed with in my life (I even have a daily list going on my Facebook Page) and Thanksgiving Day yesterday didn't disappoint.  Start to finish, it was a great day.
 Sam did all of our share of the cooking (we had invited friends over and divided the food pretty evenly), leaving me free to work on last minute cleaning and setting up the Party Room.  Tyler vanished to the playroom for most of the day, but Kaitlyn was in this awesome helpful mood and not only did she happily help with the rolls but she cheerfully did a lot of things that on other days she would have complained about.
 She was also being a little spunky and funny.  I had to laugh at one point in the morning when I had pulled out a handful of vases and left them on the counter while I decided what I wanted to do for centerpieces.  She of course wanted to know what they were for and when I told her I was figuring it out her comment was "why do ladies always have to impress people?" lol
 I don't think I hit the "impressive" mark but the staging for a party is always fun.  I didn't do a lot of preplanning for this one and almost everything is something I already had, but I did add some fun little touches.
 The Grown Ups' Table

 I thought these printable tags were a fun touch.  (Found them here) 
 And the Kids' Table
 with their own fun tags.  The husband says he is impressed with my ability to find silly kids jokes for holidays (I always print some for lunchboxes). lol

 And this year (thanks to Pinterest) I decided to start a new tradition - have everyone write something they are thankful for on the table runners.  Then we can look back on it every year and add to it.
 I was surprised that even the guys quickly got to work when I brought out the fabric markers and did some fun and creative additions.
 Kinda wishing I had started this 10 years ago so I'd have my own babies' handprints right there along with little Miles. 
All in all it was a great meal (and evening) with great company.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Good Enough

Paper clutter.  Right now it's driving me batty.  You should see the state of my craft table.  No, scratch that.  If you see the state of my craft table you will realize exactly how unorganized and crazy my life is right now.  And I don't have the time or energy to clean it all up the "right way" so there it all sits.  And gets worse.
I had a little "a-ha" moment the other day.  I had pulled out my recipe binder to search for something and as I was paging through the giant stack of recipes we had shoved in there since I set up the binder
(You can find my original blog post about organizing my recipe binder here) for the THIRD time without finding what I was looking for...well, I realized something.  I may not have the time to sit down and type up, format, print, then stick in page protectors all the recipes I want to add to the binder.  But that doesn't mean that they can't join their friends in their categories and make themselves a little easier to find, right?  So right then and there I spread out all the random paper on the counter, sorted it into piles (including some meant for the garbage can - a key to all organization projects, true?), punched holes in one side, and stuck them in the binder.  Took me all of 5 minutes.

It's not perfect and it's not completely finished.  But sometimes good enough is, well...Good Enough! ;)  Now, where else can I apply this new concept???

Friday, November 15, 2013

New Furniture!

 This one has been a long time in the works.  We've been in search of a piece of furniture to house the cable box and DVD player since we moved in three years ago.  We finally spotted one we thought would work, with shutters to cover up the ugly electronic components, but of course it was too expensive so we made plans to build one.  I ran across the shutters and legs at a Habitat for Humanity resale store in March.  Then last month I said that's it, we're building this thing for my birthday!  So, one month late and I did the finish work myself but Happy Birthday to me! ;)

 One set of shutters hides the cable box.  The thought was that the remote would be able to shoot through the gaps when they are open, which is does.  But because the components are on the side in the corner the remote still gets some interference from the couch sometimes so we've been opening the door when we want to watch TV.
I know - the colors look all different.  That's because none of them looks right in photos.  In person it's a much deeper, richer teal color which I love right now.  I'm also really happy with how the antiquing turned out.  According to my Pinterest research I was supposed to use "antiquing glaze" but the stores here had no clue what I was talking about it.  So I did the spray paint, distress the edges with sandpaper, then stain over the top of everything method.
 You know what's coming next, right?  ACCESSORIES!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Giving Thanks

Here we are in November - the month for Giving Thanks.  Typically it's the few weeks sandwiched in between Halloween and the Christmas holidays where we try to have a little normalcy or start prepping for the whirlwind of December.  This year I am trying to not let myself get carried away with What's Happening Next, but instead spend a little time focusing on what's happening now.  The change of seasons, the breezy weather, fall leaves, gorgeous blue skies.  In trying to be more mindful of the premise behind Thanksgiving and recognizing all the things there are to be grateful for, I am posting at least one Thankful item (on my Facebook page) every day. 

I was also pretty quick to give the home décor a little update.  This weekend I took the time to switch out all the Halloween stuff for things that are more Fall or Thanksgiving themed.  The front porch was pretty easy.

Down came the witch wreaths and swags and up went the fall wreath I made last year.
 The mailbox got it's own matching swag.

I had planned ahead and put the Thankful Grateful Blessed wording on the back of the witch sign.  I love the way this one turned out, especially the stain technique.  (I'll do a quick, more in depth post on the sign in a few because I'm just that happy with it ;)  ).
And of course the pallet pumpkins got to stay.

 Inside I did a quick switcheroo on the mantel.  The bead board banner got flipped from Trick or Treat to Give Thanks.  And down came the witch hats in favor of a few pumpkins (including one of my 2x4 wooden pumpkins).  It's still a little bare looking, but it will do for now.

And the witch hat centerpiece was replaced with another pumpkin that I pulled from the ledge in the stairwell (where the footprint ghosts still reside lol - they work for Thanksgiving, right? lol). 
It all took a surprisingly short amount of time to pull together - yay!  Another reminder that the small things can make big statements.  Which brings me full circle back to being thankful, mindful and recognizing all the small things in our lives that make us happy.  Like the pretty sunrise I just spotted outside my window.  I think I'll take a minute to enjoy that before rushing to grab a shower and pack the kids' lunches.
Happy November!