Friday, July 15, 2011

My favorite paintings - a family project!

Not everyone is crafty, not everyone can paint... but my brother's entire family has the gift of art somewhere inside of them. Together they created this beautiful group of paintings for their kitchen. One is of their house, another of the chicken house, a favorite tree and of course egg basket and eggs. I love the soft colors and earth tones. Each family member had a part in all or one particular canvas. Together they form the perfect paintings and the perfect family! 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Getting ready for the County Fair!

One of our FAVORITE things to do, is to go to the Fair in the fall. Always held the first week of October, the fair is a wonderful event that I've grown to love. My coworker and I count down the days, she watches the train come in and unload all the rides. I make crafts to enter into the hobbycraft contests, my sister-in-law bakes to enter in the food contests. There are rides, petting zoos, antique displays, food contests, displays of cakes, canned goods, crafts, projects,  and so much more. Each year my sis-in-law opens what we refer to as the craft sweat shop a week prior to the Fair. Her kids work on all their entries and successfully finish most of them. Crafty little things.... This year, she gave them full responsibility to make their own lists, create their own crafts and officially closed the sweat shop. Secretly, I think she knew what would happen. The kids brought their lists and their ideas to their oh so crafty aunt..... me.....Sewing is a biggie on the list... with a pillow, a purse, and a stuffed animal for Abby. Last year, we created our own pattern for a platypus... that's right a platypus, web footed and duck billed. We cut out a pattern and made a trial design, corrected our mistakes and then Abby made the second platypus all by herself. It won a ribbon.  Who wouldn't give a ribbon to someone creative enough to make a stuffed platypus....Her younger brother was very impressed. So impressed that he wants to make a pattern for a Tasmanian Devil stuffed toy... not the looney toons TAZ... but the real true Tasmanian Devil.... Check back with us in October to see if we win a Ribbon!!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Red Stool - A gift from the Heart

My mother in law is a dear. There is not another soul like her. Not only do we get along well, we both like crafts, antiques, sewing, flowers, gardening and repurposing old items. When cleaning out a barn, we found this tiny stool but the top was gone and it was weathered and worn. She took it home, painted it red and used leftover string from another project to create a woven top. She thought I would use it for a plant stand, but it is so adorable, I placed it in my dining room as an accent piece.  Our next piece will be a rocking chair!!
Thanks Glenda, it is beautiful!!!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow----Stool

What happens when you give your 9 year old nephew a can of spray paint  with the instructions to "go paint something?".... well in my case, the result was a fabulous yellow stool. This old stool was past its prime and needed a facelift. I had every intention of painting it but just couldn't find the time. Of course there are some drips and runs, but every DIYer has to start somewhere. And this was my DIY nephew's second project. His first was  tearing down a wall with a hammer, then removing all the nails. What kid doesn't want to hear his Aunt say... "Hey, take this hammer and tear that wall down."  But that is another thrilling story.  This is his second project and WOW... I love the squash color and it is perfect for holding my seedlings!

Way to go my little DIYer!!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Quick Curtain - Quick Fix

I always tell everyone to think outside the box, use your imagination, be creative.  Use the unexpected!!  Give an item a new purpose. Sometimes I forget to use my own advice. When decorating a tiny bathroom, I didn't want to spend a lot (any) money on a curtain, so I used what I had on hand. The bathroom is decorated in a nautical theme (all items that were elsewhere in the house), and a plain curtain just didn't hold any appeal for me. Neither did a dark curtain. Neither did a colorful curtain.  Nor ruffles, nor fullness... nothing seemed to work. So to give myself time to think about the perfect curtain, I used a nice large towel with a great seashell design and pretty striped edge. It was a perfect fit and a year later, it is still working well. It lets in light, doesn't distract from the rest of the bathroom and is easy to remove and clean... AND if I forget to place fresh bath towels in the bathroom.... it works in a pinch!!

Friday, July 1, 2011

My purpose in life!

If you read my blog long enough, you'll realize that when I'm crafting, I either work alone or with a small crew... when I say small crew, I mean under 11. When I say under 11, I mean in age!!  I am so blessed to have a home just across the garden from my niece and nephews. They love DIY projects!! They love slinging paint! They love hammers, nails, saws (don't tell their mom) and pliers! And they work for snacks!!! What could be better??
It took me a while to understand how blessed I really am. I've worked at the same job for 30 years (I started at age 4, really....). I've never really known what I am supposed to do with my life. Teach??!?! Art??!?! Own a business?!?!? What do I want to do?!?!?! Where am I supposed to be?!?!?!

I've probably asked myself those questions one zillion times. And here I am in the exact same place, day in and day out, work, sleep, eat.... But this year, I noticed something that had missed my attention. I have been able to teach my youngest niece and nephews some of the things that took me years to learn. Already, they have experimented with Stained Glass, Patio Paints, Stepping stones, Painted Rocks, and more. We have knocked down walls, painted cabinets and floors, painted barns, built potting benches, caulked cracks, used joint compound, replaced drywall using stuff we had torn down, repurposed furniture, searched for rocks to paint, created Christmas ornaments, ate lots of chocolate and so much more!! We all share the love for a good craft or a great DIY project. I didn't know how much impact I was making in their lives until Jack, age 9,  presented me with this neat drawing of the four of us working together!! Most family drawings have the family holding hands or something.... not my family... notice in the picture that all the kids  have tools. And in case you don't recognize me, I'm the one in the pink shirt, smiling, holding a crowbar.... with the great hair!!! Its nice to know that they see me this way.

I think I have found my purpose!!!

Now... where was that project on how to create a wall to display children's artwork... I think I'm going to need it!!