Acts Of Kindness Jar

This time last year was a little tough for me. I had a brand new baby and was adjusting to juggling the baby plus my other 3 little boys.  I was tired and exhausted.  Money was tight, as we were in the process of buying our home.  This time last year was also one of the most humbling and inspiring that I have ever had.

It all started off with my first attempt to the store with the new baby and boys in tow.  As soon as the cashier finished ringing up my groceries, I realized I had brought the diaper bag instead of my purse, and my wallet was in my purse!  Yes, one of those moments.  At this point the baby is crying, my toddler is screaming for his grapes and I can feel the tears starting.  I looked at the cashier and said, “I will have to come back”.  The next thing I knew, out of no where a complete stranger walked up and paid for all my groceries! I tried to stop her but she wouldn’t let me. I stood there and cried even harder, I couldn’t believe it.

A few days later, I took the boys for a treat and someone ahead of us in the drive thru paid for our food!! I was again amazed at the act of kindness.

Then, I went to pick up a layaway for the boys that I had done at a local store (hadn’t done that in 20 years) and someone had already paid the whole thing off and if all of that wasn’t enough, a family member gave us a large gift to help us buy our house.  Yes, all of this happened to me within a matter of 2 weeks. I felt so lucky, so grateful, so blessed, so humbled and so inspired. I knew that I couldn’t pay these people back, so I decided I would begin to pay it forward.  This is something I have been working on all year.

To get the boys involved in paying it forward, I decided we would do an

“Acts of kindness Jar”.

Payitforwardbucket

The boys and I found a bucket from the dollar spot in Target, decorated it with ribbon, added letters and made a label.

Payitforwardsbucketcolors

We chose 3 different colors of paper, each one representing something different.

1.  White – What we can do for our family: Take daddy lunch at work, write a letter or draw a picture for grandparents.
2.  Light Blue – What we can do for others: Pay for someone’s meal, leave money in a vending machine in the Urgent Care, take a treat to the nurses at the children’s hospital.
3.  Dark Blue – What we can do for the needy in our community: Make a handmade blanket, purchase socks for the “sockless” or make placemats for nursing homes.

The boys have been having a blast paying it forward!  They love going on “Mission Kindness” and  I love it too.

It is so true that there is more happiness in giving.

Thank you Mandy for having me.

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Mesh Christmas Wreath Tutorial (Re-posted from last year)

Hello everyone! If you are like me, you’re  busy getting ready for company coming for Thanksgiving.

I’m so excited.  Everyone will be home!!!!

I noticed today that my mesh wreath Christmas tutorial from last year got more visits than the main blog page!

How does that happen?

So here it is…. on the main page :-)…

A re-run from last year.

Enjoy!

I made such an easy wreath a few days ago…and I remembered to take pictures!

I have never made one of these mesh wreaths before.
It was soooo easy.  Anyone could do this.

1.  Lay your wreath on a flat surface and “fluff” the branches so they are sticking up and out.

I purchased a 22 inch wreath from Michael’s.  It was $2.99

2.  Scrunch up your mesh.

You can purchase the mesh at Michael’s, but our Michael’s was sold out so I went to a wholesale florist shop to purchase it.
It runs about 12.99 a role.

3.  Lay your scrunched part of the mesh in between 2 branches.

4.  Twist the 2 branches around your mesh.

5.  Repeat the scrunch and twist about every 6 inches until you come to the first loop.  Tuck the ends through the wreath
so they are hidden on the backside of the wreath.

6.  Next, cut ribbons (I used 2.5 inch wired ribbon in two different patterns) in 6-8 inch strips and randomly “twist” them
into the wreath just as you did the “scrunch” part of the mesh (you just won’t be making the loop part).

This is what it should look like.

7.  Randomly hot glue your ornaments into the wreath.   Add any type of foliage, randomly placing them into the wreath.
8.  I added two ornaments to the center.   I attached them to a ribbon and then strung the ribbon through the wreath.

 

What do you think?

I’m hoping to finish up my decorating tomorrow.  I have a Christmas Tree tutorial that I’d like to share with you.  You can see one in the left hand, bottom corner in the picture above.

See you tomorrow!

Don’t forget there is a link party going on.

“Turning the Daunting Into the Do-able”


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I’m linking to:

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Thursday’s With Tracie – “Fall Bucket List Ideas”

As I cruise Pinterest, I am in awe by the amazing ideas that people come up with.  I wanted to do a post showing you my favorite ideas that people had pinned for Fall.

First off, I loved making a Summer Bucket List, so why not do a bucket list for Fall???  I love the Fall bucket list that Erin, from How To Nest For Less   created.

She also has an adorable Fall Subway Art Printable , which I printed and Mod Podged on a plaque for my mantle.  Adorable blog she has!!!

I took her idea for a Fall Bucket List and did a little twist on it.   I got a tin can, wrapped it with fall paper, added a little burlap, twine, and then added my clothespins for all the things I wanted to do this Fall with the boys.

Below are some of amazing ideas that I have added to my Fall Bucket List.

Emily Rose from Simply Vintage Girl made this adorable thankful tree.

What a great thing to do, not just at this time of year but something all year long! Love it, we will definitely be doing this.

Another project that I have had pinned for awhile (that I added to my bucket list for this fall) is this Family Hand Print Tree that Liz from Naptime Decorator made.  I love the colors she chose.

Here is a fun way to display leaves that we find on our nature walk.

Source: Dream Home

These are just plain adorable! The boys would love making these!

Source: Zui Blog

This is a cute and easy craft that is made with toilet paper.

Source: Spoonful 

Also, on my Bucket List is to make an apple pie with the boys.

Source: Domestic Dilettante

Making Carmel Apples is also on the list… these are perfect!!!

Source:  Allyson Baker Design

The boys love apple cider- this recipe sounds great.

Source: The Frugal Girls

I am hoping that by adding these ideas to my bucket list we will  actually get them done!  Not just pinned on my Pinterest Board LOL!!!

Of course, I also had to add a trip to the Pumpkin Farm, nature walk/scavenger hunt (here is a cute printable for that-The Bird Feed NYC) and definitely not forgetting to go on a hayride!

The boys and I are excited about accomplishing our Fall Bucket List.   Since we are already a bit into fall, you could always add a few things that you have already done and then you can cross them off your bucket list!  Isn’t it great to get so much accomplished??? 🙂

Thank you Mandy for having me!

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Pink Pumpkins For the Cure

I’m re-posting my pink pumpkins that I made last year.  They ended up being my most popular post!  Hope you enjoy.

If you are looking for Link Party #42
CLICK HERE

Did you know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month?

 I can say (pretty much without a doubt) that everyone knows someone who has been affected by breast cancer or has battled this beast themselves. I lost my grandmother 19 years ago to breast cancer. I often wonder if she would have lived longer (and more comfortably) if we had the technology that we have today.

I believe  every woman in this nation wonders if they will be the “1 out of 8” diagnosed with breast cancer.  I had a scare myself 6 years ago.  I’ve always been very diligent about doing my self exam…one morning I found a little tiny lump.  Talk about freaked out.  I was lucky I was able to get into an oncologist very quickly (my husband was able to make a few calls).  After a thorough examination, the doctor felt that it was a benign cyst.  Sure enough, within a few months it was gone.

Reflecting on the moment that I felt that cyst…from the time I shut off the water in the shower to finishing drying off,  I felt my life had changed completely.  In a matter of moments, I thought of my children, chemo therapy, etc., etc., I was the “1 out of the 8”.

If you are a breast cancer survivor, my heart goes out to you.  You live a sweet life every day and I bet you do not take one thing for granted.  You are blessed…. I pray that the rest of us (the 7 out of the 8) can value life as much as I know that you value you yours…I pray that we take nothing for granted, live in the moment, and realize that life is a journey and we must savor the sweet moments along the way.

So, guess what?  Did you know that PINK is the new orange this month? Yup, it is! How fun is that? You know what that means? Yup…PINK PUMPKINS!

Here are mine:

These were sooooo much fun to make!

Blog friends, I challenge each and everyone of you to make a pink pumpkin this year!

Materials I used for pumpkins:
Martha Stewart Craft Paint (Pink Taffeta Pearl and Amaranth Satin)
Ribbon
Straight Pins
Breast Cancer Ribbon Stickers (I found them at Michael’s) and I painted them a darker pink
Glitter
Glue

Here are the Link Parties I’m attending:


Strut Your Stuff Saturday @ Six Sister’s Stuff

Scrappy Saturdays @ Candace’s Creations

Scrappy Saturdays @ A Vision to Remember

Think Pink Sunday @Flamingo Toes

Sunday Showcase @ Under the Table Dreaming

Just Something I Whipped Up @ The Girl Creative

Sundae Scoop @ I Heart Nap Time

Nifty Thrifty Sunday @ Nifty Thrifty Things

Creative Blogger’s Party Hop @ Homemaker on a Dime

Strut Your Stuff Sunday @ J and M’s Eye Candy

Twice Owned Tuesday @ Creating a House of Grace

Tuesdays Treasures @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

Trash to Treasure Tuesday @ Sassy Sites

So Creative Party @ So Very Creative

One Project At A Time @ A Bowl Full Of Lemons

Tutorials and Tips Tuesday @ Home Stories A to Z

Running With Glitter Link Party @ Running With Glitter

Topsy Turvy Tuesdays @ I’m Topsy Turvy

Tuesday Talent Show @ Chef In Training.blogspot.com

Creative Link Party @ Today’s Creative Blog

Who’s Got Talent @ Night Owl Crafting

A Little Birdie Told Me  Tuesday @ Rook No 17
Tuesday Confessional @ Crafty Confessions
Lil’ Luna Link Par-tay @ Lil Luna

5 Minutes Just For Me

Tutorial Tuesday @ Hope Studios

Terrific Under Ten Tuesday @ At Home With K

Recreate Into Something New @ Not So Simple Housewife

Tuesday {Ten} @ Under The Table Dreaming

Whatever Wednesday @ Momma Hen’s Coop
Whatever Goes Wednesday @ Someday Crafts

Share the Love Wednesday @ Verry Merry Vintage Style

Blue Cricket Show and Tell @ Blue Cricket Design

Home Décor and Organizing Link Party @ Organize Your Stuff Now

Create and Share @ The Trendy Treehouse

Anything Goes @  Type A Decorating

Piece of Work Wednesday Furniture Party @ Prim and Proper

Share Your Awesomeness @ Thirty Sixth Avenue

Wow Me Wednesday @ Gingersnap Crafts

Your Whims Wednesday @ My Girlish Whims

Look What I Made @  Creations By Kara

What I Made Wednesday @ Sweet Peas and Bumble Bees

Show and Share @ Southern Lovely

Re-Create Into Something New @ Not So Simple Housewife

Pinkolicious Thursday @ Frugalicious Me

Restored it Wednesday @ Restore Interiors

What’s Up Wednesday @ Sew Woodsy

Would You Buy It Wednesday @ Junker Newbie

Time to Shine @ A Diamond In the Stuff

Show Me What You Got @ Not Just A Housewife

Whatever Wednesday @ Momma Hen’s Coop

A Crafty Soiree @ Yesterday On Tuesday
Strut Your Stuff Link Party @ Some What Simple

It’s a Party @ Creative Princess

Thrifty Thursday Blog Hop @ Saved By Love Creations

Thrifty Thursday Link Party @ Thrifty and Fabuless

Open House Linky Party @ No Minimalist Here

Thrifty Thursday @ Thrifty Decorating with Nikki

Hookin Up with HoH @ House of Hepworths

Creative Juice Link Up @ Momnivores-Dilemma

Everything But The Kitchen Sink @ A Little Knick Knack

Show Off Your Stuff Party @ Fireflies and Jellybeans

Fab Friday Link Par-Tay @ Faith, Trust and Pixie Dust

Delightfully Inspiring Thursday @ Delightful Order

Furniture Feature Friday @ Miss Mustard Seed

Flaunt It Friday @ Chic On a Shoestring

Friday Unfolded @ Stuff and Nonsense

Boost My Blog Friday @ Design It Chic
Feature Yourself Friday @ Fingerprints On the Fridge
Feathered Nest Friday @ French Country Cottage

Potpourri Friday @ Twenty-Eight-0-Five

Show and Tell Friday @ Romantic Home

Tickled Pink Friday @ 504 Main

Frugal Friday @ Shabby Nest

BFF Open House Link Party @ Answer Is Chocolate

Delicately Constructed Friday @ Delicate Construction

Themed Link Party @ Funky Junk Interiors

Strut Your Stuff Saturday @ Six Sister’s Stuff

Scrappy Saturdays @ Candace’s Creations

Scrappy Saturdays @ A Vision to Remember

Think Pink Sunday @Flamingo Toes

Sunday Showcase @ Under the Table Dreaming

Just Something I Whipped Up @ The Girl Creative

Sundae Scoop @ I Heart Nap Time

Nifty Thrifty Sunday @ Nifty Thrifty Things

Creative Bloggers Party Hop @ Homemaker on a Dime

Strut Your Stuff Sunday @ J and M’s Eye Candy

Pink Saturday @ How Sweet the Sound

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Quick and Easy DIY Photo Blocks – “Thursdays With Tracie”

We recently took the boys to a  pumpkin farm and I got so many great pictures that I wanted to display them all.

The problem?

I didn’t want to put 10 picture frames on my mantle.

My solution?

A picture block!

 First, I had my husband cut out some 4 x 4 blocks.

Next, I cut all my photos out to fit the sides of the block.

 

I applied a layer of Mod Podge to the block ( I know the picture shows glossy but trust me, use MATTE Mod Podge… I will explain why later).

 

Mod Podge a picture to each side of your block.

Let the block dry for an hour or two and then apply a layer of Matte Mod Podge to the block.  As I said before, use MATTE Mod Podge.  I originally used glossy and when I applied it to the block (over the picture) the brushstrokes were very visible.   I went back over it with the Matte Mod Podge, which I applied with a wide sponge brush and the finish was so much better. So Matte Modge Podge and sponge brush works great!

These were so quick and easy to make.

Thanks Mandy for having me.

Happy Fall everyone!!

Maiden D'Shademop it up mondays

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Halloween Mesh Wreath Tutorial

I’m a lucky Nana because I get the privilege of watching our 10 month old grandson on Wednesdays… it’s now my favorite day of the week :-).  While he napped, I put together my Halloween Mesh Wreath that I have been planning on making for 2 weeks!  Today was the day.

I was planning on hanging my wreath on the front door, but decided to make a vignette in our foyer.  But first, I need to paint the mirror that I want to hang it on (which I got done today and will distress it tomorrow).  Anyway, I just hung the wreath on the kitchen wall to get a picture of it.

This wreath is super easy to make and can be made in an hour.

This is what the bones of the wreath looks like.  You can also find black “Christmas” wreaths that are used for Halloween.  The wires that are poking out are what you will wrap around the mesh.

Begin by scrunching your mesh about 9″ inches from the end.

Beginning in the inner circle of the wreath, tie the first scrunched part of your mesh to the wreath.

After the first scrunch (which was 9″), I went a bit bigger before I made the 2nd scrunch –
I wanted the loop to be  large so the whole wreath would look full.

Here is a close up of how it is tied in.  When tying the mesh, only make one twist with the ties so it’s easy to undo.
Once you have finished the inner ring, then continue to the outside of the wreath and go all the way around.

Here it is with the mesh finished.  Lots of big loops!

Next, I added the Glamor Rope (purchased this at a floral store) which is really fun to work with.
I tied it into where I had tied the mesh.

Now, you are ready to add your bows and embellishments.
These will be tied into the same ties where you attached the mesh.

Below is a great website with a video tutorial showing you how to make a bow.
It’s tough when you’re home alone and trying to make a bow and take a picture of it!!!!
This video makes it very simple.

http://blog.mardigrasoutlet.com/2011/08/halloween-wreath-with-deco-mesh-video.html

This weekend I’ll be decorating our fireplace mantel and finishing up the vignette in the entry.

Don’t forget there is a party going on!
If you would like to link up…
CLICK HERE

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How To Line Your Drawers With Linoleum Squares

Wondering where I’ve been?

Life has been a bit crazy here in the Walter Household!

A GOOD kind of crazy!

First, I have to say I LOVE HAVING MY GRANDCHILDREN IN TOWN!!! It is the BEST and I feel so BLESSED!!!  I must be driving my step-daughter crazy, because I want to see them every day! 🙂

I’m still plugging away on my cabinets.  Usually, when I begin a project, I drive myself crazy (and my hubby) because I can’t do anything else or think of anything else until the project is finished!  I’m working on that “all or nothing” quirky part of my personality :-).  So instead of feeling the need to finish up the cabinets, I have been doing other projects too, which I will be showing you soon.

Today, I want to show you how I’m lining my kitchen cabinets.  I’ve always used contact paper in the past, but this time around I’m using 12×12 Linoleum Squares that are super sticky on the back.

I found these at Home Depot on Sale for $15 a box.  I got the cheapest I could find.  I figured it didn’t have to be too durable since we won’t be walking on them.

First step is to make sure that your drawers are clean.  I brushed out the corners and went along the inside edges with a clean paint brush.

Then, I used my hand vacuum cleaner.

I measured my drawer (the first square is easy because you don’t have to cut it) and marked my linoleum square.

Using a straight edge ruler, I cut the linoleum with a straight edge knife (a linoleum knife would work well also).  I found that if I put the cutting board on the ground and cut the linoleum, I was able to apply more pressure.

The great thing about these squares (I found out after about the 3rd cut), is you don’t have to apply too much pressure because once the square is scored with the blade, it literally “breaks” right on your scored line!

Here is my finished drawer!

I chose this style of linoleum because it was the cheapest.  In hindsight, I wouldn’t choose an obvious pattern like the pergo style – made me crazy trying to match it!  I’m thrilled to have found a covering for my drawers that is durable and easy to clean.

Be sure you stop back by on Thursday.  Tracie has an amazing dessert that she will be sharing.  She made it for us last weekend… it was delicious!

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How to Prepare a Wire Planter for Planting

I thought it would be a good time to delve into the old posts and see what I could find that ya’ll might find interesting (since I’m on a bit of a summer break!).  It’s amazing to see just how far I have come along in photography pics for the blog!  I DO hope you agree with me… I’m a little better, right?? right???? :-).

These are so much fun to make.  They are all over my fence!  Hope you enjoy!

I love to find old wire/iron planters.  I have several hanging on my fence with ivy, bacopa and choleus.  I have found that if I put them in a spot that gets a little bit of morning sun and mostly afternoon shade, they do great!

A few weeks ago I was at our local nursery and was drooling over all of the iron planters.  They are not cheap!  I fell in love with the big baskets that have a handle (I know there is a name for these but for the life of me, I can’t think of what it is right now)…cost: $125!  I could not justify a wired basket (rusty, mind you) to put in my flower bed IN MY BACKYARD!

Two weeks later I was with my daughter-in-law, Karen (who by the way is the funnest and bestest d-in-law I could hope for), at the Long Beach Antique Fair and low and behold, right in front of me was the EXACT wire basket that I had seen at the nursery here in Fresno!!! The price…$25.  I couldn’t grab it fast enough.  I was sure there was 10 people behind me just waiting to pounce on this amazing, rusty, wire basket! ha! What a treasure I had found!!!  By the way….if anyone can share with me why these metal things are so expensive….I would LOVE to know!!!  Don’t they just weld and bend the wire?????

Let me share with you a very simple tutorial on how to prepare your wire basket/planter for planting a plant (tongue twister, yet again):

Here are the items that you will need:

Wire basket/planter (try to find a planter that doesn’t have too much room between the wires on the sides, as the moss will fall through and not hold your soil, I’d say no more than 4 in), plants, 5 gallon bucket filled half with water, dried green moss (I used 2 bags for this project) and Miracle Grow Moisture Control (love this stuff).

I have been able to find the dried green moss at smaller nurseries.  I believe that Michael’s and Joann’s carries it also.  Unfortunately, I have not been able to find it at Lowes or Home Depot.

1.  Fill your water bucket 1/2 full with water.  Submerge the moss  completely into the water and let it sit in the water for about 30 minutes.

2.  Gather handfuls of the wet moss from the bucket and gently squeeze (I mean gently because there are sticks in it that poke!)

3.  Once it feels fairly dry from the water being squeezed out (start on the bottom of your planter) placing a thick layer of the moss.  Continue this up the sides.  Sometimes I will place one hand outside the planter and one hand inside the planter and push the moss from each side.  Be sure to use large, thick pieces of the moss.  You don’t want any holes, otherwise the soil will fall through.

4.  Be sure to go as far up the sides of the planter as you are able to.  I go a little bit over the edge.

5.  Fill your container about 1/2 full with the Moisture Control Soil.  I have found that Miracle Grow makes the best!

6.  Add the plants.

7.  After the plants are in, cover the base of your plants with the moisture soil.  Fertilize and water.

WAHLAH!!!!

WARNING:  These are very addicting!!!!!

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My Thrift Store Herb Box

I was so excited when I found this little PINK box (yes, it was pink) with the handle at our local thrift store.  Price? $2.95, which made it even more exciting!  I had a few other treasures that I had swooped down on (before anyone else could) and put them into the little pink box – very convenient.  I was so proud of myself – I had something to carry my treasures in!  I was pretty devastated a few minutes later when the handle on my cute little box broke and all of my treasures fell to the floor (with a few of them breaking)…. worst part?  When the little box hit the floor it broke into 4 pieces (2 end pieces and 2 side pieces…and I was still holding the handle!).  I was so sad.

After getting all of my broken treasures (including my little pink box) up to the register (I was told I didn’t have to pay for anything, but I did anyway). I started inspecting my little box and I realized it would be very simple to glue it all back together.

With a little wood glue, some clamps, my cameo silhouette, black paint, glaze, and some sandpaper here is my broken little pink $2.95 HERB box!

My goodness I worked hard for this HERB box!

It was worth it…

I’m so happy with the way it turned out.

♥♥♥

Today's Creative BlogCrafty ConfessionsThriftyThursday52 Mantels

 

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How To Paint Clay Pots

Happy Friday Everyone!!!

I have a super easy project to show you that I made in just a few hours (mostly paint drying time).

I’ve been seeing these adorable stacked clay plots in Blogland and wanted to make my own version.

Step 1:
I purchased your run of the mill, cheap clay pots from Lowes.  I sanded them a bit and washed them down with water.

Step 2:
I sprayed the pots (and dish it sets in) with an inexpensive gray primer.

Step 3:
Once the primer had dried I sprayed the pots with a Rustoleum (all weather) Black Gloss spray paint.

Step 4:
Once that was dry, I taped the pots off with some painter’s tape.

Step 5:
I painted the white stripes with Martha Stewart’s Paint that I had purchased at Michael’s and applied it with a brush.

Now your ready to put some pretty plants in!

Step 6:
In each pot, you will want to put a brick or two in, in order to make the next pot stand up.

Step 7:
Add your moisture control dirt and plant your plants.

I’m thrilled with the way the project turned out.
I haven’t decided if I’m going to add the house numbers to the largest pot yet.

Have a fabulous weekend!

Sharing with these fabulous blogs

mop it up mondaysVisit My 1929 Charmer Blog!UndertheTableandDreaming

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