Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Saturday, January 19, 2013

An observation of bitterness:

It's an ugly thing.  Bitterness is a beast that grows when you ignore it or when you pretend it isn't what it is.  I know a lot about this subject, as I've allowed bitterness to become one of my best friends.  This friend rubs my shoulders and whispers 'why are people so dumb?'  Bitterness brings along its bosom buddy, Pride, and they dig around until my thoughts are so self-focused, I can't see anyone but me, my way, and how I've been wronged. 

We've been talking a lot about the Fruits of the Spirit at our house.  The other day after raising my voice- okay, yelling- at the kids, I said I was sorry.  Oliver said, "It's okay mommy.  Next time just use self-control."  Humph.

The fruits are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  That list leaves no room for bitterness, pride, or any other narcissistic thoughts.  All of those virtues focus outward, towards others.  Our thoughts are reflected in our attitude, and our attitude influences those around us.
Hebrews 12:15 Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God.  Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many.
Speaking of virtue, here come three angels...that's a joke!  But they sure are cute- Oliver, Theo, and George last fall.

Friday, January 18, 2013


I ordered these flash cards from Amazon for our school room.  Andrew made me the nifty little 1x1 'sticks' as he calls them, with a groove routed in for holding the cards.  I wanted the area to be interesting without taking away from the uniqueness of the pictures, and mulled over a few options before settling on this.

I ended up painting the shelves BM White Chocolate and the background one of my favorite moody hues, BM Iron Mountain.  -I love the quirky animals!

Next up- this mirror that my mother in law gave me right after Andrew and I were married.  You may recognize it from Margot's bedroom.  I took the photo after I had started the makeover, so the hooks (slightly copper-esque) were already off.  I've always loved this piece, just felt like it needed a little update.

With the help of my trusty little side kick, it's been transformed!  I had some glossy black paint left over from a different project, so after I hand-sawed/sanded away the slats, I slapped on a few coats of paint.  Oliver spray painted the hooks gold and there you have it, folks.

Pinata ornament.

Post-Christmas rearranging...

The little bookshelf from Margot's room found itself in the living room one afternoon.  Now for some storage containers a little classier than a shoebox...
Ah, the A and Z bookends.  I bought them in silver.  That seemed boring after a while, so I painted them Iron Mountain.  When everything in my house started turning Iron Mountain, I knew I was developing an unhealthy obsession.  Kidding.  But seriously, isn't this type a little too serious for such a plain finish?  I wanted to punch it up a little.  Blaze orange and gold glitter?  Nailed it. 

And that's a wrap- for now!  I actually have a great idea to sew a slipcover for the red couch, but let's face it-- that could take me years.  Oliver has been doing some watercolor painting, so I'll share the process of the little master artist when we get our skills honed a tad more.  We're trying to get over the too much water thing.  As it is, every picture ends up with a hole..or two. 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Christmas Around the House

Here's how our house looked for the holidays. I try to infuse as much cheer into as many nooks as possible...

This little guy is a new Fontanini piece from my mother.  I love how many unique pieces are in this nativity.  For St. Nicholas Night, the kids each got a goat to go with the stable.

The paper trees are a project Oliver and I did to set on tables at a church brunch.  We roughly followed this idea.

That's not an illusion- the floor has more green than the tree...

I ordered my 'It's a Wonderful Life' poster a couple of years ago.  I had found it through a google search, and when it came I found out that little Zuzu Baily herself (aka Carolyn Grimes), signed and sent it!

My wonderful in laws bought me two of these adorable vintage electric candles that I found the perfect place for!...oh, except there's no power source.  Aw shucks.

Margot's cheer.

Gigi and Oliver's cheer.  I'm pretty sure George was belting out 'Silent Night' in this picture.  Regular cheermeister.

I found this yarn art nativity scene at a garage sale.  (It fits in so well in the room, I couldn't bear to take it down.)

Both of the bigger kids got flannel sheets for Christmas.  They're so pretty and oh so soft!

I raided a few antique books to find these sweet pages.

Isn't this little finger puppet nativity just the bee's knees?!  We've had it since Oliver's first Christmas 5 years ago, and I'm always in awe when we can find each person and pet at the end of the holiday.

An art project I did several years ago before I had built my Christmas decor arsenal.  Most of the magazine snippings are from J.Crew.

{I realize it's a little late for a Christmassy blog subject, but could we say better late than never and leave it at that?}

I should really take and post more pictures, since many things have found new homes around the house since boxing up all the Christmas.  What a lot of work- decorating for Christmas, working up the courage to take it all back down without shedding too many tears after New Years, rethinking everything from side tables to kids' rocking chairs to art trying to get the house to look happy again (instead of just lonely, like it does after taking away its friendly Christmas tree). 

Anyway, I'll be back sometime in the next week (hopefully!), to share a few projects I've done to pass some winter hours.  The three kids actually flip through time pretty swiftly, but they do occasionally give me peace, which I fill with my Bible and coffee and projects...and staring at walls.

Thanks for reading!


Margot Meg loves to snuggle Hector.  Thankfully, he is the world's most mellow dog.

I set Georgi's cowgirl hat on her pillow next to her at nap time.  When I went to get her up, this is what I found.

I wonder if she had dreams of the wild west?  Reminds me of Swede in Leif Enger's Peace Like a River.

My sweet little bro reading the advent calendar to the kids.

We've had the exciting privilege of watching many high school basketball games this season.  My brothers are in 9th and 12th grades, so they occasionally even play varsity together.  They're studs and I'm proud of 'em.

My parents surprised the whole family by flying sister Anna and little Theo to MN for a week in mid-December.  What a joy it was!

We've had an unusually warm January here in central MN, so Oliver and G were out making snowmen.

This pup is awesome.

New Christmas slippers!

Merry Christmas!