Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Rustic Frame

This is a copy cat frame from Hallmark that I stole (shhh!)  ...stole the idea, not the frame ;)  Anyway, I hate, and I mean HATE tracking down old, used, banged up barn wood and therefore I am a huge HUGE fan of this method to antique wood (called oxidizing) using these two simple products.  Black Tea and steel wool dissolved in vinegar (takes about 3 days, but like many things, you can store it and it just gets better with time).  I won't go into details on the method, instead just refer to the link.
But here are a few pictures of the process.  On the right, it's brushed with tea (I actually put my tea in a spray bottle and sprayed the wood).  The one on the left is with the steel wool/ vinegar solution painted on after the tea has dried.  It's pretty dark as you can see but it gets lighter as you sand.  Don't pay attention to the rosettes at the top, that's for another project.
 Here is after a very light sanding.  I used Cedar fencing planks because they are very light weight.  They are pretty rough but I wasn't going for a smooth surface this time since it would only be for looks and no one would be touching it.

I used wood glue and screws to piece it all together.  You don't have to stain the back but you will have to make sure to stain the sides.

 
Finished product.


Thursday, January 24, 2013

$6 Twine Lamp

 What you will need:  4-5 spools of your favorite color twine ($1.29 a piece). I used 4.  A candle light or a suspended light.  I found mine at the Thrift store for a buck a piece. I also found a bouncy ball there as well for 20 cents.  You will also need a glue of your choice.  Any glue that dries clear is fine.  I used half modge podge and half Elmers mixed together (helps save on cost).
 There are a lot of methods for getting the glue on the twine.  #1 you can put some glue in your hand and run the twine through as you go.  #2 you can unravel the twine into a bowl and pour the glue over it.  Try not to mix it too much though otherwise it will knot.  #3 The best method I found was to use option #1 for the first spool of twine just to make sure you get an even base layer.  Then every spool after that I would simply wrap the twine on the ball and then pour a generous amount of glue on my hands and rub it all over the ball.  Do this after each spool of twine.  Messy, but it seemed to go faster this way.
 
 Let it dry 2 days.
 Cut a hole in the twine large enough to get your hand through.  Poke a hole in the ball and pull it out.  If you plan on doing more than one you could use a ball pump needle to deflate the ball instead.
 
 Place the sphere over the candle light or suspend it with your suspension light.


Friday, August 17, 2012

Carmel Apple Pies

I wanted to post this on Pintrest and I needed a place to put the instructions so....here ya go!


Start by picking out 6-7 small apples.

The on on the right is a normal size apple so the one on the left is what I mean by small.

Slice.

Remove center and brush with lemon juice.

Sprinkle with Cinnamon Sugar.

Put in as many caramels as you can fit.

Put face down on pie crust.

Wrap and trip off excess.

Place smooth side up, so the apple inside is right side up.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
If I did it over again, I would have served it on a pool of melted caramel as well.  Yum Yum!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

My Girl


Today my baby girl is 1. Here are a few misconceptions I had about having a girl before she came:

Girls aren’t as squirmy.

Girls don’t get as dirty.

Girls are quieter.

Girls aren’t capable of having mood swings till they’re 12.

Girls don’t bite.

Things that I was absolutely right on about:

That I would love this little girl with all my heart. With a deep pinching kind of love that eventually consumes my whole heart with wrenching, sweet emotion.

Emily, you remind me what it’s like to be a little girl myself. Back when hugging my Heart to Heart Bear was considered a favorite pastime, talking walks down a country road to visit my best friend Joloene was the most important thing on my to-do list, and imagination trumped all. These memories remind me to have patience with all my children, whose current priorities should be something of the same. Carefree and untroubled.

As always, for me, music captures so perfectly how I feel about you and me. And every night with a whisper I sing these words in your ear as I rock you to sleep. Happy Birthday my darling.

(currently playing on playlist)

“I Never Saw Blue Like That Before” by Sawn Colvin.

Today I took a walk up the street

And picked a flower and climbed the hill

Above the lake

And secret thoughts were said aloud

We watched the faces in the clouds

Until the clouds had blown away

And were we ever somewhere else

You know, it's hard to say

And I never saw blue like that before

Across the sky

Around the world

You've given me all you have and more

And no one else has ever shown me how

To see the world the way I see it now

Oh, I, I never saw blue like that

I can't believe a month ago

I was alone, I didn't know you

I hadn't seen or heard you're name

And even now, I'm so amazed

It's like a dream, It's like a rainbow, it's like the rain

And somethings are the way they are

And words just can't explain

Cause I never saw blue like that before

Across the sky

Around the world

You've given me all you have and more

And no one else has ever shown me how

To see the world the way I see it now

Oh, I, I never saw blue like that before

And it feels like now,

And it feels always,

And it feels like coming home

I never saw blue like that before

Across the sky

Around the world

You've given me all you have and more

And no one else has ever shown me how

To see the world the way I see it now

Oh, I, I never saw blue like that before

Oh, I, I never saw blue like that

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Stupid Stupid Stupid!

**WARNEING: Spoiler alert for those hoping to read The Hunger Games. Although I would save myself the letdown and do something more constructive with your time...like watch paint dry.


That may seem like a juvenile title but as far as bad language goes, in my house I may as well have said a swear word. And it’s directed at you Suzanne Collins. You and your stupid trilogy of mind-bending books, The Hunger Games.

Alright, lets not get ahead of ourselves, shall we? And give credit where credit is due? You rocked in the middle of the story! I will be the first to admit that although it took me a while to warm up to your storyline of children being forced to kill each other in the beginning, by the middle, I was HOOKED! Loved it. Loved the dynamics of the games, personalities of all the characters, loved the whole love triangle thing you had going on with Peeta, Gale and Katniss. You described everything so perfectly!

But what I want to know is, what happened at the end? It was like the last hundred pages you all the sudden realized that you had a deadline to meet and hastened to tell us a mediocre and depressing end. It was literally painful and disappointing to read. Like seeing a gifted young scientist bring the overused model of the planets in orbit to the National Science Fair. What happened??

You spent all that time building us up for two main things…the capture of the capital and for Katniss to decide between Gale and Peeta. Then you mention the overthrow of the Capital almost like an after thought, and made Katniss go insane (literally) and choose Peeta basically by default! Not to meantion the fact that Gale, her best friend in the whole wide world, who always has her back, never comes back to see her? But deserts her for some plush job with the government, whom he hates? I wanted her to choose Peeta, but not like that! Horrible horrible horrible!

I finished reading the final book while on the bike at the gym and was so upset on my drive back home that I had to make up an alternate ending and explain the complicated dynamics to my 11 month old daughter, who didn’t understand a word, but knows I’m brilliant. Never mind I had to keep working the words “patty cake” in there so she would clap.

I never thought I’d say this after finishing this series but Suzanne Collins, you disappoint me. I appreciate your struggle to be an innovative author and think outside the box to continually surprise your readers, but your ending does not match the personalities you’ve painted for your characters. Not by a long shot. Besides the fact that it’s depressing! How often do people actually end up with everything they’ve wanted in life? We are continually thwarted by reality in our efforts for a happily ever after, the least you can do is give it to us in fiction! Badly done Suzanne Collins. I think you have great potential to be a wonderful author but this one was badly done.

You have my full support and promise to purchase should you decide to rewrite the last book.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Real Life On S.W.A.T.




When Matt came home from work one day and told me he wanted to join the S.W.A.T. team, my honest reaction was “Hot!” I thought it would be so cool to be married to someone so badass (course, he didn’t need the S.W.A.T. team for that).

After weeks of scenario training and long days at the shooting range, the rose still never lost it’s bloom. The idea just got more attractive if anything.

…Then last night he didn’t come home after work. I waited up for a while and then finally went to bed thinking he was just working a long case. Finally at about 3:45am I got a text from my friend letting me know that her husband was called out for S.W.A.T. earlier that morning and that’s where my husband was too. I was relieved to know that he was ok and then immediately fearful. I didn’t know the circumstances he was called out for. I didn’t know how it was going or when he would be home. Suddenly this S.W.A.T. thing wasn’t so cool anymore.

So, I’ve been up since 4 am, wide awake trying to keep my mind from going to the dark side. It’s 9:17am now and I’ve learned little about the case. Only that it was a hold up at a gas station. There was a hostage that has since been let go. Only one solitary man with a gun locked inside a building is what stands between me and snuggling with my honey on a cold rainy Saturday morning.

When I would get mad as a teenager I used to tell my mom “It’s my life! My choices don’t effect anyone else but me!” So na├»ve. I sit with my three kids at home now wondering if this man realizes how many life’s he is effecting with these choices.

The suspense is almost more than I can take. I can only presume that no news is good news. I’m trying to distract myself but thoughts of Matt are never far from my mind. The driveway doesn’t go more than 5 minutes without being checked for a glimpse of his truck.

And we wait.

** Update: 11:31 am. Still no call. Matt has been up for 27 hours now and I worry about him staying awake and alert. I feel more confident as the hours pass though for some reason. Well, I know the reason. Heavenly Father is helping me feel his calming influence. I know that Matt is a careful methodical man who knows what he is doing and how to handle himself. I'm confident everything will turn out fine. ....At least for the good guys.

Follow the story at www.helenair.com

**Update: 12:24pm Finally! A call from Matt. It was the first he could get through. Everyone is ok and the stand-off is over. They had to go in and get the guy so I'm sure there will be a fun story posted by Matt on our family blog soon about how it was from his point of view.

See what I mean? Not so great. Maybe when he tells me the story of how it all went down and I forget how worried I was, I'll think S.W.A.T is cool again. ....I'm not holding my breath.



Saturday, September 24, 2011

Let Conference Begin!!

No matter who you are or what religion you belong to, if you are a woman, Elder Uchtdorf's talk at the end of this broadcast is for you. It felt like a warm blanket draped over my heart to ease my everyday worries and concerns.



If you like what you've heard, please tune in with the rest of us this saturday and sunday for a world wide General Conference at www.lds.org.