Thursday, August 22, 2013

Happy Birthday Big Daddy!

It's Big Daddy's Birthday!  
We have a football scrimmage tonight, so it's low key today, but Saturday night we will party hardy! :-)

It's been a great year of life!  Here's to many more.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Chunky Bead Necklaces

As discussed many (many, many, many) times on this blog - I'm not super crafty, so when I find a craft that's easy for me to make, I get pretty excited and may, or may not, go a little overboard in making said craft over and over and over again.  Hee.  :-)

 That's the way it is right now with chunky bead necklaces.  They seem to be everywhere on little girls these days!  I decided to make one for ML in her school colors so she could wear it with her uniform on 'no PE' days.  The biggest obstacle seems to be finding larger, candy colored beads at stores like Hobby Lobby and Michael's.  For this particular necklace, I only had time to visit Hobby Lobby, so I decided to fill in the 'lack of' candy colored beads with sparkly, clear beads.  Because, who doesn't love a nice sparkle?????  :-)

Once I settled on the beads and chose my wire (more on that in a few,) my final decision was what type of clasp to purchase.  I settled on a toggle clasp, but there were lots of choices!  If my beads had been lighter, I might have chosen the magnetic clasp, just because it would be so easy for ML to operate on her own.

I had so much fun making that necklace, that I decided to make a bracelet for our friend who was baptized on Sunday using the same method.  I used beads in school colors once again and another toggle clasp.

I've *attempted* to make other jewelry over the years and most of those attempts have been total failures, mostly due to the materials I used to string the beads.  I finally came to the conclusion that stretchy plastic thread and fabric threads aren't for me.  Wire seems to be my medium (if a not-so-crafty girl can have a medium - ha!)
 I usually start by cutting (with tiny pliers) a length of wire about 1.5 times what I think I'll need (if I was better at this/ did it more often, I'd probably waste much less wire.)  Then a make a small, temporary loop at one end of the wire to serve as a 'stop' for the beads I'm stringing.  After all of the beads are on the wire, I simply unhook the temporary loop and attach each end of the toggle clasp to each end of the necklace/ bracelet.
I attach the toggles by threading it around and around the attachment loop and then twisting at the bottom between the toggle and the closest bead, but I'm not sure that's the 'professional' way of doing things.  It's just my way.  :-)
Not sure about the bracelet, since it was a gift, but the necklace has held up very well and we are really enjoying it!
Sunday, August 18, 2013

Weekend Crazy

(I may never post from moblie again!  I can't get this space at the top to go away for anything.  Gah! :-)
We had a great, crazy busy weekend!
We started with two birthday parties on Friday afternoon. JR loved the high dive at the pool where his friend!s birthday party was hosted. He has no fear. 

Sweet friends. 

I dropped off JR at 4, then dropped off ML at 4:30, then went back to socialize and pick up JR, but he was invited to spend the night with his friend.  ML was at her party until 8:30, so Big Daddy & I got an unexpected date night. Score!

We went to one if our favorite places and then did a little shopping. Then I went to pick up ML. She had a blast at her party. My friend Jill had planned the ultimate little girl party - American Girl doll themed- and she pulled it off seamlessly. ML said it was the best party ever!

Saturday we got up & met my parents and nieces at the Space & Rocket Center.  

Then we all went to a local BBQ competition to eat lunch and support one of our favorite charities. 
I had to leave soon after to pick up ML from another birthday party (one of our friends was kind enough to take her to the party.)

And then we dropped off a friend at home and were off to our neighborhood cookout. It was cold and drizzling the entire time - on August 17!!!!!  I still can't believe this weather. We left once ML got out of the pool, her lips were blue from the cold!

Today, Sunday, was my & Big Daddy's turn to man the desk at the Small Groups station in the church lobby, so we did that and after church, I had a parent meet & greet for high school small group leaders. 

We had lunch at home & got ready for our young adult small group to come over. I had to do some grocery shopping & Big Daddy & ML had an Elvis music dance party. :-)

We went back to church to see one of JR's classmates be baptized. Let me tell you, I was a HOT MESS during that baptism service. 19 people were baptized and every story was so amazing - from the youngest child to the 62 year old man. It was how do you even describe what it's like to be in a room with that many people on fire for God publicly declaring their faith in Jesus as their Lord and Savior???- however you describe it, that's what it was. :-). Amazing just doesn't seem like enough description!  I felt so blessed to be there. 
Finally it was time for small group - always a good time!  Love to laugh and grow in faith with those young adults!

Saturday marked 7 days until JR's football season begins!

And it also marked 14 days until the Auburn Season begins!!!!  War Eagle!!!!  We're riding the Gus Bus all the way to victory!  (We hope!  Ha!)  Here's to a new era!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Second Saturday

Every second Saturday of the month, our church Missions department sponsors (the aptly titled) 'Second Saturday' where church and community members can just stop in and help complete a mission project.  
Every Second Saturday they have an indoor project and an outdoor project.  I was so excited when I realized we could go with Big Daddy last Saturday to help build a wheelchair ramp.

I love any kind of mission project, but for whatever reason, I really love it when I can be hands on and get dirty and really 'work' on a mission project.  And I also love projects where we can work as a family.  :-)

I invited my girls from my 10th grade small group to join us and I was so proud of how hard they worked!

They were so sweet to include ML:

We had a great time.  We didn't quite finish before the rain started pouring down, but we were super close!  The team leader was able to go back this week and finish for us - I drove by today and it looks fantastic!

Church on Sunday and a lunch at Mellow Mushroom rounded out our weekend:

And of course, JR reading.  He is totally immersed in the world of Harry Potter and loving every second of it!  Love to see him reading!

Friday, August 16, 2013

SYL - Thrifted Lamp & Coffee Table

Linking up to SYL at Kelly's Korner again!  Because I'm not very thrifty or very crafty, but I do really, really enjoy reading blog posts written by people who are thrifty and crafty!

My favorite 'genuine' thrift store find is this old brass lamp I purchased for about $3.  My handy hubby (Big Daddy as he's called on this blog) had just purchased a paint sprayer and he was anxious to try it out.  So I pulled out a sample of pale green paint I had purchased when I was looking for paint colors for the dining room and Big Daddy gave the lamp a few coats of paint.  

We were both skeptical that the paint would stick to the brass, but I loved how it turned out and decided to put the lamp in the office.  Our office is a pretty high traffic area, but the paint has stood the test of time!  Not sure if we would have had the same results if we'd brushed the paint on, but that paint sprayer was worth it's weight in gold as far as paint application!

 Now I have a lamp I love to illuminate all 100000000000000 papers that need to be filed.  Ha! (Just keepin' it real people.  Keepin' it real.)

Next up is my family room coffee table.  It's not quite a 'genuine' thrift store find, but it was a find none the less and one of my favorite furniture pieces, so I'll include it.  :-)

I actually found it at a shop that was going out of business.  It had been a ladies dress shop that catered to the Red Hat Society members (Remember those?  Everyone dressed in purple and wore red hats and went to lunch?  Because what we ladies need is another excuse to get together and eat, right?  Ha!)  Any way - it had been sold to another lady who tried to add in some funky vintage clothes to the mix, but I guess it didn't go over well and she was selling everything, including the furniture.  This piece was actually her desk.  I had Big Daddy cut down the legs and viola!  Coffee table.  

(Please excuse the messy couch.  I probably should have at least straightened  and fluffed the pillows before taking the picture, but once again - just keeping it real.  Real as in, I just told my kids to get off the couch so I could take the photo real.  :-)
Our family room is pretty big, so I knew I wanted a big coffee table to fill some of the space.  Normal coffee tables are dwarfed by the size of the room.  The desk worked perfectly and over the years it has been such a blessing.  

It has been our coloring table, 

Our playing table,

Our puppet show theater,

Our birthday party table,

Our game night table,
And so much more!

I hope you enjoyed reading about my 'finds.'  Excited to read about yours!
Thursday, August 15, 2013

Back to School! 2013

Last Tuesday was back to school for us!  I can still hardly believe it.  
I honestly feel like we just got out of school and into summer break last week!!
But, I guess it's like they say - time waits for no man and it's on to 1st Grade and 4th grade for these kiddos.
 (See?  Despite all those back seat fights, they DO love each other!

It was a really stormy start to the school year, so we had to take our first day of school pictures on the back porch swing instead of the front yard like usual.

Sweet ML.  She has really grown this summer.  She seems so much more 'big girl' now.  She'll always be my baby, but there isn't one thing left about her that's toddler or baby-ish anymore.  Which is equal parts joy and sadness for me.  Sigh.  ML struggled at the end of Kindergarten to keep up reading wise, so we tutored with one of the first grade teachers over the summer and it looks like she's back on track now.  Plus! - added bonus - we got our summer tutor as our First Grade teacher!!!  So perfect for my sweet ML, who is usually pretty timid around new people.  It felt so good to leave her with a teacher she already knew and was familiar with and loved.

And this guy.  The big guy.  What can I say?  Smart - sometimes too smart for his own good.  Loves to read, to learn, and to talk.  Love him.  He's going to have 4th grade eating out of the palm of his hand.

By the time we got to school, it was raining buckets.  Literally pouring.  So I let the kids out under the covered carpool drop off and then ran in to take a few extra shots with my cell phone.

ML and her sweet teacher:
 At her desk - so excited!

JR and his sweet homeroom teacher:
 4th Grade rotates between 3 teachers, but he was so thrilled to get Mrs. B as his homeroom teacher.

Finally - a little composite I made of JR's first days of school over the years.  I made it when I was laughing about how there's no real dilemma about what to wear on the first day of school for my kids!  JR actually reached for a black shirt the first day of school this year until I reminded him he'd always worn purple.  So one more year of purple.  Who knows?  Maybe next year we'll go crazy and wear a grey shirt the first day?  Ha!