Monday, February 29, 2016

Vintage Spring

Don't you love when the heaviness of winter lifts, ushering in a lighter and brighter spring?

I added a little spring to the dining room this weekend. Vintage egg cups, lambs, spring flowers, and linens.

I have a weakness for vintage linens. This sweet cross stitch pattern is so lovely in its pastel shades of spring.

It inspired me to make this card!

{Today's Brew: Stitches and Swirls stamp set (Papertrey Ink), Think Big Favorites sentiment (PTI), PTI Linen card stock, PTI Kraft card stock, PTI inks}

Thanks for visiting the cafe today, or as they say in France "Merci, mes amis!"

Friday, February 26, 2016

A Tip For Tulip Bouquets

My dear, sweet husband brought me a bouquet of tulips today!

I love my man. He knows how badly I crave spring, and nothing says "Spring is coming" like tulips.

Here's a tip for all of you fellow tulip lovers who bring home a bouquet from the store, unwrap it, put it in a vase, and watch the stems droop.

Fill a vase with water, and unwrap only the bottom portion of the tissue. Stick the stems in the vase of water, but leave the top portion covered in the tissue for one hour. This allows the stems to drink up the water and encourages them to stay upright.

After an hour, remove the wrap and arrange the stems. You will have lovely blooms that will not be so droopy. This also works well for daffodils.

Ah! Spring!

I learned this tip from my sweet mom, who always has good advice about flowers and life and stuff. :)

Jemimah Jane is quite the puddle-duck herself. Her new favorite trick is to scoot the water bowl and play in the puddle. Big fun for puppies and Moms!

Can you see her in her background? Looks like more mischief afoot! Silly Jemma.

Blessings on your weekend, cafe friends!

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Life With Jemma

Life with Jemma has been a learning experience as we navigate our way through planet puppy. She is so much fun! A lot of work, but so much fun.  In my sleep deprived state, it seems I've forgotten a lot of what it was like to sleep in my bed and not on the couch. And who did I talk to before Jemma came along?

I call her my Wilson on this little Castaway island. She keeps me company all day long.

She looks like a little lamb. Here she is, sleeping with her lambie toy at my feet.

Mary had a little lamb, its fleece was white as snow, and everywhere that Mary went, the lamb was sure to go!

She loves to play outside, chasing balls, digging in mulch, chewing on pine cones. Good times! She chases and hops and pounces like a rabbit. We call her funny bunny.

Tail-wagging greetings are the best!

Baby gates have saved our sanity! This house has a sort of open-ish floor plan, with really wide doorways between most rooms, making it nearly impossible to corral her in a safe place. So we finally figured out a way, using multiple gates, to keep her confined to the kitchen/sun room/family room area.

She has razor sharp piranha teeth now, so there are chew toys everywhere! It's hard to believe that this sweet little lamb can instantly turn into a lion. My husband calls her Chewcifer. :)

Caution: Shockingly bad haircut photo to follow!

I went in last week for a cute shag do, something I could style quickly, and came out with a pixie that I did not ask for. My son, Sam, said I look like Sandra Gravity. Great! I have astronaut hair! It should grow out to resemble the photo I showed the stylist in around four months. Grrrr. If anyone needs the name of a stylist who looks at your photos, ignores them, and then cuts your hair too short, just ask me.

Astronaut hair aside, we love our snuggle time! Sleeping puppies are well-behaved puppies.

My new best friend has very soft ears! We love her sweet personality. Jemma loves to play, but she also loves to love and be loved. We should have plenty of fun and adventure together in the days ahead.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

For My Artsy Friend

I have a friend back in Pittsburgh who is having a birthday this week, so I made her this card.

Carolyn is a really cool, artsy person. She's a docent at the Carnegie Museum, she paints, and she has the coolest collection of curated art in her home. A really fun, sweet lady! I miss her, along with all of my other Pittsburgh people.

I tried to get a little artsy myself and break out the water coloring.

{Today's Brew: Friendship Jar stamps and die (PTI), Memories ink, watercolor paper, card stock (PTI), Kuretake Gansai Tambi water colors}

Thanks for visiting the cafe today!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

February Planner Pages

I had to get back to my planner this week.

Some days, there are tough times when I have to work to stay on top of the daily highs and lows. I have found that the planner really helps me with the twenty four hours ahead in my find purpose, to find a quiet place with God, and to not feel quite so alone.

Spending time with Jemma has been a lot of fun, but it has also isolated me from the outside world.

This, too, shall pass.

This verse brought tears to my eyes. I struggle with a desire to be a people pleaser, but find myself feeling like a total failure in the process. These words showed me that I need to live my days in a way pleasing to God alone.

I need to find more and more time to abide in Him in the day to day, looking for the sacred and holy in the moment.

I love this monthly page that helps me keep track of important dates and goals.

I'm now using the weekly pages to right down my prayers and keep track of bible study in a more meaningful way.

Each Carpe Diem planner from Simple Stories comes with a notepad at the back. Tear off a sheet with the pre-punched holes, and you can insert it anywhere in your binder. LOVE! I use these sheets for recording monthly spending.

It's hard to believe that February is quickly coming to a close. We've managed to fit a lot into this short month...a trip to Indianapolis, two more rooms painted, and a new puppy added to the family.

Spring days are ahead. Sunshine, flowers, and puppy days.

Blessings, cafe friends!

Friday, February 19, 2016

Glory Art Scripture Challenge #2: Happiness or Joy?

The February scripture art challenge was posted at Patter's Blog, Triple The Scraps. Patter explores happiness versus joy, the kind of joy that is complete in Jesus Christ. I love this!

When I read Patter's thoughts, I immediately remembered the Beth Moore bible study of 1 and 2 Thessalonians, Children of the Day.

Beth had so many wonderful thoughts on the subject. Her son-in-law, Pastor Curtis Jones, says that "joy is happiness without the moodiness". Yes!

And Beth had a thought that could certainly understand. She says "If we want our happiness to outlast a caffeine buzz, we're probably referring to joy."

I decided to use some Lawn Fawn stamps to create my page and a matching bookmark.

{Today's Brew: stamps from Lawn Fawn, Distress Stains, Memory Box stencil, Simple Stories washi tape}

I'm going to be staying close to home for a while because of this little bundle of love that is happiest perched at my feet:

I've decided to temporarily cut back on some of the appointments in my planner, like preschool and bible study at church. This time in the early days with puppy is short and sweet, and it's also crucial to her development as she finds her way in our home and in our hearts. In the meantime, I'm going to dig into the word at home, between naps and potty breaks.

I've attempted to finish this Beth Moore bible study twice with two different women's groups in two different cities. Both times, I got sidetracked halfway through. I'm determined to finish this study here at home, with Jemma and Java and Jehovah. A little coffee, and a whole lot of Jesus. A perfect recipe for joy.

Blessings on your Friday, cafe friends!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Fixer Upper Family Room Tweaked

Here at the Fixer Upper house, we have finally managed to remove all traces of the original Heinz house colors...the ketchup of the dining room, the mustard of the kitchen, the hot dog bun color of the hallway, and the relish color of the powder room and family room. Hooray!

Here we are, in the process of prepping the room. Of all of the room colors, this one was probably the one that bothered us the least. But the truth was that the walls and ceiling were in terrible shape. After patching and sanding, we got to work.

The previous color wasn't bad, but it just needed updating. I think the colors looked like Pottery Barn year 2000. Nothing wrong with that, but a decade and a half later it was time for a change.

Ah, so soothing!

We chose Sherwin Williams Oyster Bay, which happens to be just two shades darker than Sea Salt in the paint swatch. It's a lovely shade of green with just a hint of blue-grey.

My goal for the interiors of this house has been to lighten, brighten, and refresh. Also, I have to pick paint colors that will both tone down the yellow wood tones and complement them at the same time. I think Oyster Bay really fits the bill.

I love how fresh it looks with yellow accents!

It also looks wonderful when paired with the SW Accessible Beige in the kitchen and hallway.

If you look closely in the photo above, you can see my new favorite decor piece that we've added to the house.

We chose a lovely shade of creamy furriness to give texture and warmth to the room. ;)

Jemma loves sleeping on my slippers!

Month eight, and we have officially painted every room on the main floor. woo hoo! Time to start moving upstairs. But not too soon. After all, we have a baby in the house, and it's time to enjoy her and keep the house calm while she's little.

My cup overflows!

Blessings, cafe friends!