Tuesday, October 30, 2012

We Could All Learn a Lesson from a Child

PUDDLE WARNINGThis post might have the possibility of creating puddles of happy, touching tears. You have been warned. :)

I have been so very blessed. I have been given very good children. Oh they have their moments of fighting, teasing, and yelling at each other (Stop breathing on me!), but their nature is innately good. Since this whole thing with my Dad, we have done a lot of talking about helping my parents and what will be required of all of us. We had a family meeting and told them all of what was going to happen to Opa (dutch for grandpa). He was sick, he would be in the hospital for long time, he would lose his hair, and we couldn't bring the sick bugs to him.We talked about everyone sacrificing, so we can help my parents. They have been so good to do their part. 

There has also been a lot of discussion about finances, as hospital bills can get quite steep. I have a monthly craft group, and I decided, that all proceeds will be donated to my parents. My daughter Aunna, who is 11, proposed that all the kids do more to help around the house, so I could help my dad at the hospital, and have time to work on the crafts for the group. We also discussed the plans for a fundraising Boutique and how that would help financially for my parents. I would have to be making a lot of the crafts myself, so they said they would help with dinner too.

Then this is where you will need your hankie... 
My 7 year old, Bradley comes to me and crawls onto my lap, turns my head to face him, and says: "Mom, I have some dollars, 3 I think. Can I give them to Opa?" At this point I was doing my best to hold it together. I told him that I was sure Opa would be so grateful to have them. Bradley then proceeds to ask me what else he can do to help raise money. He proclaimed he wanted to start a "Lemonade Stand Business", that's what he called it. But since it was winter, he thought hot chocolate would be better, and in the summer he would do lemonade.

He said he needed a box, to write a sign. I asked him what he would write and he said he would put...
"My Opa has Leukemia, please buy some.
25 cents"

He has been working on what he needs to run said business. Hot cocoa (of course), cups, spoons and a giant thing to put it in (thermos). Then he said he wanted to go to all the houses being built in our neighborhood and ask the workers if they would buy some. "Because, mom, they are probably cold working outside."

Yes, I think we all could learn a lesson from a child.

Monday, October 29, 2012


We've all done it. Heard some kind of tragic, life changing story that applied to someone else's life, and for a moment thought... "I am so glad these kinds of things don't happen to my family." I've done it. I personally have friends whose loved ones have been taken in an instant, or become sick, or even impaired. And everytime, my heart goes out to them completely, followed by that guilty thought.

Well, over the last 2 weeks, I have become that individual in your circle of friends. The one you have empathy for, feel compassion for, and then think..."I am glad it isn't me." On Wednesday, October 17, 2012 my dad was diagnosed with Leukemia.

Don't feel guilty though, you should be glad. We all have our individual roles in this life. And for whatever reason this is something my dad has to fight through, and in turn, we must deal with. These types of things are nothing you can really prepare for, emotionally that is. You have to experience and process the emotions, and in time you come to accept it.

I have to say though, as far as diagnoses go, we are lucky. When he was first given the news of Leukemia, they talked about a dual phenotype something or other. Meaning they thought he had both the ALL and AML types of cancer. Let's just say that prognosis was bad, like, no hope bad. I remember feeling kind of numb for those few days, and then... some good news. A few days later, the pathologists said it was just the ALL type, and we were pretty happy about that as far as families-that-just-received-cancer-as-a-diagnosis could be.

Now, 2 short weeks later we are trying to get into a routine of how best to help my dad, share the burden with my mom, and for me... make the most of the time. Not that we have been given a time, but I have noticed that since my dad has been sick, our relationship is different, he is different. I mean, how could you really stay the same? He tells me all the time to enjoy my kids, cause the time goes way too fast, that he loves me, and is proud of the mother I have become- and I see the joy in his eyes a lot brighter when I tell him the going ons of my children.

He has always told me he is proud of me, and I always knew it in the past, but now I am hearing it. Like it is sinking into my soul. And every moment I spend with him, I feel like is a photo shoot, memories I will add to my mind should the outcome not end up as optimistic as it started.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Charger Plates

This is my favorite time of year. I don't know why, but since I was young I have absolutely adored the fall, I love the crisp air, and warm sweaters. I love the fact you can wear denim and boots and you don't even need a coat!

Now, top this with decor and you have the perfect time of year!!!

A few months ago I had the opportunity to help a friend out in a bind. She designs and sells vinyl as a side business and her computer crashed. She has been trying to figure out a way to recover YEARS of vinyl designs. A call came in to her to help with an LDS women's ward function (most of us know as Super Saturday). It is a day dedicated to crafting! Sign ups are provided to be able to make said crafts.

 Since her computer is down, she gave that woman my number. 
I don't know why, but I am sooo excited to do this. When I met with the lady in charge of this one project, she said they had 13 inch charger plates that they wanted to do vinyl on. I was given full creative reign of what I wanted to do! 

How cool is that? The only thing I have had a really hard time with is remembering to keep cost in check and not give away my services or product. This is definitely a learned attribute...

This is the HALLOWEEN plate. I know this type of saying is EVERYWHERE!! But honestly, I love it. I designed the spider web and spider, and just added the font.

Here is the FALL/HARVEST plate. I made this specifically for use during September, October, and November. I love keeping my pumpkins up as long as I can.

Last but not least, the CHRISTMAS charger. Every once in a while I do things that even amaze myself.This is one of those things. I designed the star, and put a lot of work into it, and I love it! Not the most spectacular things ever, but it brightened up my week to make them.

Friday, October 5, 2012

I Changed My Mind

It's 2 am. I can't sleep. So what am I doing? Blogging about paint colors....
 I painted my front hallway a while back. (Which I do not have a picture of as my phone crashed and I lost the photo, this is all I could find!)

At first, I loved it. I loved the color etc, then I painted my ceilings, followed by the kitchen, then the Living room. I loved it too. I was really hoping it would solve my perceived problems.
It. Didn't.
This is my problem:
 When my house was being built it looked really light infused, cheery even. Now, for whatever reason it looks dark, and gloomy. I chose hard floors (in my kitchen and entryway) that were one of the worst decisions I have EVER made! I think they have a defect. No matter how I care for them, they have no shine or luster. They actually look cleaner when they are dirtier? In addition to this they suck the life right out of the room!
Needless to say, I am really struggling with inspiration.
 I really want a place that is my home. A place that no matter where I have been I walk in the door and think "Ahhh, I am home!" not...."ugh, its looks dingy in here..."
So I am facing a dilemma... I am a lover of rich colors. Deeper hues, as you can see from the swatch above.
Reds, golden yellows, dark blues, celery greens. And I am facing an alteration in my go to colors for the last 10 years cause they don't work in this home. It is making me feel like I found out I was switched at birth or something... It goes against everything I know!!!
So, I went with what seemed to be the best color scheme I could find on paint chips, and put them on my walls. I seriously didn't even buy a small jar to test. I dove in with my clothes on. I also decided to add something else to this boring little hallway as well.

To give you and idea of the darkness in the front of the house, this picture was taken at 10:30in the morning! To my right is a tall slender window by the front door. Yes, even the hallway light is on. I chose a height I want the chair rail to be and I drew a line with a level.

Here, you can see the marks I made to note where I wanted the vertical slats to go. 

I know a lot of people have a hard time doing the math for the spacing in a project like this. It is confusing to some, but here is the method, simplified (I hope!):
  • Measure the length of the wall you are working with. Go with inches, not feet.
  • Decide how many slats you want in that space. Here, I wanted 4 on a 47" space.
  • This is NOT the tricky part. However many slats you want (4), add one for doing the math. 4+1=5
  • Take the space you measured (47 inches) and divide by your slat number plus the one (5). 45/5=9.4 inches. That is your spacing. 
  • This has the potential to be the tricky part: To turn the 0.4 to a fraction, go back to 3rd grade, and remember that first digit after the decimal is the TENTHS digit which makes this number 4/10. Simplify the fraction and you get 2/5. Go from there.

This is the teeniest tiniest wall inside the hallway you cannot see from the other pictures. I have rounded corners in my house, and this is how I ended the chair rail, as I do not want it wrapping the corner into my entry way. Back cut your chair rail in a 45 degree angle. Fill with a little piece that has also been cut at a 45 to meet, and then a regular 90 degree where it meets the wall.

After lots of caulking and hole filling (which I thought you didn't really need pictures of), this is what came about.


I have a few more cute things I am adding to this (like a doorbell cover and light switch plate! Ha!), but I am painting them now.


I am done with my refinishing of frames and here is the finale! I love the way it turned out!