This is my $5 basket I picked up at one of my favorite thrift stores. :) I know I had posted a before picture of it a while back, but here is a refresher. It was a simple kind of pretty as is, but I wanted to get my creative on and try my hand at making my own stencil.
I gave this "craigslisted" rubber plant a new plastic pot that was taller and skinnier, so that it could fit nicely into the basket. Next up was paint. The paint was leftover from another project. The pattern is nothing fancy, but gave it some interest and it was fun to do something quick and crafty. Most projects these days aren't quick, so this was nice!
This is a very awkward wall right now. Everything is clumped together with a mess of instruments to the right of the piano. There isn't much styling yet. I have plans to build a HUGE built in bookshelf along this wall from one side to the other, BUT that's definitely not happening anytime soon, so for now this is it. I am also thinking how fun it would be to paint this wall a dark color, to give it some depth and coziness. Still undecided.
Here is another quick and free craft....driftwood art ;) I had this piece of driftwood lying around and got the idea to mount it on a rod with a wood base. I saw a product from an online shop that looked a lot like this and I decided to replicate it for free. We had a metal rod in the garage, I cut two pieces of wood and glue them together, sanded and stained the base, drilled the holes, and stuck it all together. Yup...really easy project. Sometimes you just need a project that you can get done in an afternoon.
Look at the picture below. Isn't this the saddest piece of marble ever??? I pulled this out from the shed this weekend. We picked this table top up a few years ago for $125 ish. I had saved up some craigslist money and was so excited to bring this beauty home! When we got home we found that the whole top had broken into pieces...still not sure how exactly that happened :( It made me sick. I couldn't even look at the thing. So, we just stored all the pieces away and tried to forget about it. This weekend I was looking in the shed and saw some of the pieces of marble sitting on the floor, so I decided to pull it out and see what I could do with it all. Well, it looks like I have all the pieces except for the one tiny piece on the upper right. So, I am thinking I can salvage this. I plan on adhering it all to a round piece of plywood and then grouting the cracks with a color that matches the veins. We will need to fill in that one missing piece of marble and then buff it and seal it really well. There are some stains that we most likely won't get out, but I don't mind. This table is our "everything" table, so it's going to get messy and stained and will most definitely not look perfect anyways. I am so happy that we saved all of these pieces...even if it took me this long to work up the courage to pull it out again. Maybe I can convince Johnny to make a new base for it...I'm definitely picturing it with a different base ;)
Next blog post I will show you what I started working on last weekend. It is only in the beginning stages, but I am really excited to have started and I am really hoping to work on it some more this weekend. What projects are you working on? I would love to hear about it!!!
Here are some things I enjoy making in my kitchen...first up is homemade granola. This is my moms recipe and I love it! It consists of oats, raisins, coconut, and some other yummy spices mixed together. I stir all the ingredients in a bowl, bake it in the oven, stirring it occasionally and that's it. So easy! Down below is a picture of my home made almond milk. This was delicious, but I sure don't have time to make that regularly, so that was a one time treat. Maybe I will try it again this summer .... or maybe not ;) Another "drink" that I didn't photograph is my morning shake. I have had this shake almost every morning for over 3 years. I throw these ingredients together in a blender: 2 raw eggs, 1/2 cup yogurt (the real creamy Nancy's goodness...I buy big containers of it from Sprouts), 1/2 cup frozen blueberries, 1 banana, and a teaspoon of honey. I crave it every morning and oddly haven't ever gotten tired of it. Weird, I know!
We all love our tortillas! I buy whole wheat tortillas from Sprouts (no bad ingredients). These pictured are the white tortillas that I don't buy as often anymore (same brand from Sprouts and also very tasty and healthy). We eat through our tortillas very quickly! Every once in a while I make my own, but really, that hasn't happened in a while either. This concoction below is just a simple mix of red onion, egg, kale, ham and a sprinkle of salt. It's simple, but really tasty and very healthy.
I love radishes. I enjoy eating them plain with a little salt or throwing them into a salad like below. Another lunch I have regularly is my green shake. I have also made this shake for years..probably having it for 3-5 lunches a week. This consists of: 1 banana, 2 TBS of PB2 or real peanut butter, 2 tsp. honey, 1/2 almond milk, a big handful or two of either kale (leaves it a little on the bitter side) or with spinach (I prefer the spinach, but it is usually whatever I have left in the fridge).
I don't really view myself as a health nut, but I definitely enjoy eating healthy. I say this ALL THE TIME...this should be my life moto: "everything in moderation". I never cut specific food items out of my diet completely. I still enjoy sweets. I drink tea twice a day and that usually consists of a happy helping of half n half....just the way I like it. I used to put sugar in it, but just recently switched to agave, because it's low glycemic...not really sure if I will notice a difference, but I am experimenting. I treat myself to sweets every so often and I love making zuchinni/banana/blueberry bread with sugar and real butter...thank you Betty Crocker for the yummiest recipes! Actually, to be completely honest, I made a Betty Crocker banana bread the other afternoon and that's what we ate for dinner. We ate 2 loaves of banana bread for dinner. Haha! Speaking of butter, I love eating popcorn with butter. However, Johnny just started making it with coconut oil and that is really good too. And speaking of coconut oil, this is our go to for everything ;) Actually, I even oil pull with it for 20 minutes every morning. Go look up oil pulling and it's benefits. It's amazing! I also drink a shot of apple cider vinegar 1-2 times a day and that keeps me from getting those nasty stomach viruses. Ok, I guess I am sounding a little health nutty, but I promise, it's not as crazy as it sounds, because it has just become a part of my every day routine. I don't think much of it anymore. It actually feels weird when I don't do those things....like when we travel.
ANYWAYS, I don't even know why I am writing about what I eat. I guess it's just to say that I enjoy eating and I don't ever want to get to a point where I am obsessing over what I can and can't eat. Sometimes I do that with exercise and then I get burnt out....like I did recently with running. Anytime I missed a run, I was really hard on myself and that in turn would start the negative thinking/comparing/terrible body image of myself. NOT GOOD! Then we got really busy with all the crazy involved with getting approved to be a foster family and then I got really sick with strep and some awful cough that just didn't want to go away (now I'm thinking I have allergies on top of it all...never had that before, but this stuff isn't going away and my head doesn't feel that great) and because of it all, I stopped running. I didn't have any energy to really do much of anything, BUT it gave me time to think about how I was obsessing over exercise and it was taking the fun out of it. So, now I am slowly getting back to it, but I am not getting serious about it. I am trying to separate the way I view myself from how intense and how often I exercise, which was not a healthy way to go about it and I sure don't want my kids to think like that either. Yes, exercise is definitely important, but FOR ME, it needs to be done "all in moderation" and I want to enjoy it. Plus, I have this adorable little lady sidekick who has decided that she wants to tag along at the end of my runs. I think we may start off with half a mile together and slowly build up her endurance. She is only 6. Does anyone else run with their kids? This is a new interest for Maya and I could not be more excited about it. Last night it was Calvin, Maya, and I with our two sweet neighbor girls and our two dogs. We only ran around the block, but it was awesome! Maya said she wants to run every day...we will have to wait and see how long her enthusiasm for it will last ;)
I'm loving cozy spaces! This is one of them in my house...right in front of the fireplace :) If you come to my home, you will most likely find a huge blanket on each couch and chair...one of my favorite ways to relax.
Here is the latest project at our house. Since I took this picture, Johnny has finished the electrical and sheet rocked.. We even covered the window that looks into the kitchen. It already feels so much better and cozier! I will have to post some more progress pictures of it. I am planning on hanging some art and a wall mounted light fixture where that window was...There are several reasons why I covered that window, but the main one was for my kitchen design. We are no where near being able to afford a kitchen remodel, but I have a pretty good idea of what I want and closing that window was a must.
Boris is not so little anymore. He looks like a grown dog, but he is only 6 1/2 months old. He got sick for the first time over the weekend but thankfully he is feeling much better. He sounds like a legit guard dog now. He has the scariest low bear growl ever!
My plants in the front yard have been a delight to watch this spring. I planted everything from scratch last year (except for the trees), so this is the first time they have come up after the winter. It's rewarding to see how my hark work from last spring/summer has payed off. There is only one plant that didn't make it, so I am deciding what should take its place. I am also about to start my own vertical herb garden in the backyard. I have been saving some ideas for it on Pinterest for a while now and recently found the perfect spot for it. We picked up the supplies this weekend, but still need to finish installing it. I will post some pictures of that when it's up :)
Oh, the crazy that our animals put up with ;) This is a very typical scenario at our house...I'm loving Milton's face! Also, what I haven't taken a picture of yet is Maya trying to ride Boris like a horse....he is getting THAT big. Seriously, these dogs are the best!
It's so funny when your whole family goes to the doctor for a physical (fostering paperwork requirements) and explains to him how we haven't seen a PCP in so long because we have been very healthy...I am very much regretting that we didn't knock on wood after we said that ;) This week the kids and I went back to the doctor and all had to get antibiotics for strep! So funny! It's Friday and the kids are back in school. Thank goodness for antibiotics!
This week was another crazy one. These last 2-3 weeks have been filled to the rim with appointments galore and I believe that next week will be like that as well. Thank goodness for amazing family who is willing to help watch our kids as Johnny and I finish up our foster training sessions. We have our last training session this coming Tuesday :) Our paperwork is finished, but we are still waiting on a few of our references to come in, so that we can move on to the final 2 home visits. The training sessions have been so informative and helpful in our preparations.
We have also been getting the baby room ready. Our foster babies will be sleeping in our bedroom, so we have carved out a cozy space for a crib and comfy chair. A friend from our neighborhood was so kind to let us use her crib. It's perfect! Johnny hung up the mirror that he made for me a few years back and I hung a few of our massive pinecones that I picked up during our last family trip. Here is a sneak peek ;) The dogs are already thoroughly enjoying the sheepskin!
God is constantly reminding me to find joy in the imperfections of life. He is full of grace. This is a way of reminding myself to look back and see His faithfulness in it all.
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