Thursday, May 8, 2014

DIY Glass Jar Canisters

Recently I found myself in need of some canisters. I only had a couple and wasn't super happy with them so I decided it was time to upgrade. I really wanted a way to store my things and make them part of the decor at the same time. So I headed to my favorite place for ideas, Hobby Lobby. Oh how this girl can spend hours meandering their isles dreaming of a million things to make (all at once of course). As I stood admiring all the beautiful glass jars I decided they would be perfect for my pantry items. I got a little excited and secretly danced in the isle when I saw the famous 50% all glass jars sign. Oh YEA this momma loves a good deal! The jars I liked were already a great deal starting at $1.99 up to $5.99 plus they had a really good looking gasket for a good seal. As I began thinking what sizes I needed my craft ADD kicked in and I started drifting off to how to label them. I only picked up 4 jars on my initial trip because I couldn't think straight - if you have crafting ADD you totally understand what I mean.

Brought my jars home and put them in the dishwasher - while they washed I made a list of additional pieces I would need and then went to Pinterest for some ideas for labels. Found myself really liking some labels I found (thank you Cyndy!)- the template was free! I downloaded it and used photoshop to change the colors and font to something I liked. Printed them off on plain white paper and cut them out. Here I had all these cute labels and I sat staring trying to decide how to apply them. I had considered printing them on sticker sheets but wanted something I could wipe with a damp towel and was afraid a sticker wouldn't hold up. So I broke out my new list and headed back to Hobby Lobby to get the rest of the jars I needed and a bottle of Mod Podge. I used the mobile 40% off coupon for the Mod Podge and picked out the rest of my 50% off jars.

OK so here are my glass jar canisters and I LOVE them!

So I have 12 glass jar canisters for under $23 (plus tax) and the jar of Mod Podge for $2.99 (that I use ALL the time). Not a bad deal when you think about the total cost. Having exactly what you want in the sizes you need all for under $23. I think that's a great deal!

I plan to add some of these to my bathroom soon. Well it's on the crafting ADD list :) Happy Crafting!

FYI - if you have never used Mod Podge before - let me offer you a little tip - apply evenly to the back of the paper first, then place label to the item (jar in this case), use you fingers to gently remove any air bubbles. Then brush liberally but evenly over the front of the label. It does dry clear. Choose the finish you prefer (there are lots of options), for this craft I used a glossy finish.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Big Dreamer

Are you a big dreamer? I feel like I have always been a big dreamer full of big GRAND ideas. I have so much passion and sometimes I feel like its all over the place. Inside me is craziness flying around like someone just lit a brick of those jumping jacks fireworks. There is fire, smoke, jumping, spinning, noise - the whole lot and it's so much you aren't quite sure where to look. That's how I feel. Exactly! Except, instead of not knowing where I look, I don't know where to focus. So instead of picking one or 2 things to focus on, I dip into everything and nothing gets all of my attention. Then before you know it, I have bitten off way too much - I throw my hands in the air as a failure - and nothing gets done.

Today is different though. Today I have decided that I am going to do those grand things I think about just not all at once. Then maybe, just maybe I will be able to focus on that one thing and give it my all. Then check my list for the next adventure.

I am interested to hear if you have trouble with some the same struggles I do. Hit me up, let me know! Are you working through your chaos? Or all you still trying to figure things out?

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Kentucky State Fair

Our family heads out the KY State Fair every year - and 2013 was no different. We love to take in the sights, food, rides, animals and people ;-)

Here are our photos from the fair this year. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Being a mom is

Often times I sit and reflect on being a mom. Its hard, exhausting, stressful, rewarding, awesome, and the MOST important thing I can ever do with my life. I love hot wheels in my tub, the batmobile over the kitchen sink, little socks under the sofa, legos being rescued from the vacuum cleaner, and toothpaste splatter on the bathroom wall - OK well I don't really love it but I love that each time I see those things I immediately melt into a puddle. And although I walk around in a daze by the time its bedtime feeling completely exhausted, questioning myself each time I pointed a finger or raised my voice or frowned without thinking when that little boy crawls into my lap with his favorite lovie and blanket to read about trucks I melt. I melt over and over each day and I know with all of my being that this boy adores me - loves me with everything he is capable of. He looks up to me and depends on me - he is learning how to grow into a man and what it is like to feel complete and total unconditional love. So even though I might have pointed my finger, dished out a chicken nugget dinner or even scolded him he knows that more than anything I love him - ALL of him including his stinky feet.

Anyway, just mindless ramblings of what I feel about being a mom. I big red fluffy heart that boy <3 p="">

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Surviving Grief - a year later

This isn't a typical post for me. I like to write about my kiddo his favorite toys, crafts and DIY projects. I went back and forth about posting about this or not...then I figured - well it's not like people really actually read or follow my blog and I need to talk out loud so this is a great outlet for just that.

So here goes (talking now) One year ago (tomorrow) my world turned upside down. This is the day I would have to learn a whole new meaning to living and surviving to learn what pain and grief really meant. Let's rewind. July 10, 2012;I left work (early) the air was hot and heavy outside and heat barely tolerable. I picked up my newly just turned 4yr old little pride & joy from school and whisked him away for a cold milkshake at McDonald's. We chatted happily about our day as we made our way to visit my daddy. Today I would offer as much support as I could for him while he sat in the idea that his little brother had just lost his long battle to cancer. I could never image how sad he could be - as I could never image the pain of loosing my own brother. Our family was all gathered and ready to love on one another and celebrate that someone we loved would no longer be suffering from such a terrible disease but also acknowledge the sadness of how greatly we would miss him. We greeted my daddy and he loved on his grandson (extra tight this time) and our greetings were interrupted by a phone call. THIS would be the call that would jerk us from the realities we were in and bring us to a place we were not ever prepared for. THIS would be the call that would shake me to my core on a level I could never imagine possible. THIS would be the day my life would change forever.

My dad hesitated to answer and the call came in a second time - worried something was wrong with his son my dad answered the phone. I will never forget the sounds my dad made as a woman he never met told him that his one and only son had been shot and killed. I will never forget the way he fell to the ground overcome with unbearable pain or the way he ran all over his home screaming "Oh dear GOD!" I will never forget the sound of wails that came from my mouth - sounds that until later didn't register were my own. I will never forget the way I instantly felt the need to vomit yet was unable to stand or move. I will never forget the fear in my sons eyes as he watched his mommy and pap pap fall completely apart in front of him. I will never forget the sound of the woman who spoke so calm and matter of fact on the phone to me to tell me that my one and only brother - my soul - my everything for all of my life had been shot by an officer. I will never forget how she so calmly and emotionless uttered "these things happen sometimes". I will always remember having to tell our mother something so horrible over the phone and listening helplessly as she sobbed aloud. I will never forget that he had left this place, left me behind wondering why and how could he? Angry and sad - confused and shocked - raw and broken. I will never forget the fear and angst as I frantically struggled to figure out how to get him home to us and how I could ever manage to pay for a proper funeral service. 

Imaging how I might feel and how I might react to seeing him one last time. And the way I lost all focus of my surroundings and yelled aloud for my husband to rescue me from what I was seeing because I could not stand there for one more second. How I declared that was not him and he was not right there and this could not be happening. How I felt my body give way beneath me and drift away into a state unconsciousness because seeing him was more than I could handle. How I stood in the middle of our living room screaming for him, sobbing uncontrollably and beating myself in the head to make the images and thoughts go away. How I cried for him night after night after night for so long I ran dry of tears. How I beat myself up a billion times for missing his last 2 attempts to call home. How I know the exact date I last heard his voice call me baby girl and he spoke with pride of his nephew. How I last heard him say to me how very much he loved me and I him. 

I will never forget how loosing him has impacted my life - our lives in such a profound way that I have had to find a new way to live.I watch my son learning to throw a basketball and I think he should be learning from his uncle who was a great ball player. I watch him learn to ride his bike without training wheels and I think he should be seeing this. I watch him blow out his candles and I know he should be clapping for him. He should be learning how to flirt with girls from the best ladies man and how burp the ABC's because he totally could. He should be here and I shouldn't have to miss him and my son should have an uncle to look up to. 

But none of this could be. He left us behind way too soon so I grieve for him. I grieve for what should have been and what can never be. I stumble through this thing called life - sometimes counting the possible years I have left without him. Trying to image how my life will be without my only sibling - for all of forever. I daydream about how long forever might be and I sometimes secretly wish it were tomorrow. Sometimes I wonder how I can breathe when I hurt so bad or how I can meet a need for my young son when I can not meet my own. Sometimes I wonder how people survive with this kind of pain inside them slowly eating away at who they once were. I often wonder if I will ever truly be happy again or will it always be just moments of happiness drizzled through out the pain of such loss.  Will I ever get to a place where I don't feel guilty for smiling or having a laugh because he is not here to share it with me?

In my heart I know that my brother is forever free and eternally happy. For that I would live it all over again every single day of the rest of my forever. As his happiness and freedom were all I ever wanted for him - so my pain is worth every second for him to have these things. Never think for a moment I would want him miserable, lonely and bound for me to have him - that would be incredibly selfish of me. 

What have I learned in this past year about grief? I have learned that as hard as is to breathe sometimes, I can. As hard as it is to get up each day, I do. As raw as each nerve felt and as much as each tear hurts, I am going to survive. As much anger and confusion as I had felt, the love I have for him was larger. That as hard as it is every nano second of my life to be here without him I am happy for him that he has found eternal happiness. And I have learned that immense pain I felt in my heart that day has never gone away however I have managed to make room for it. I am learning to live alongside my grief and make room for it in my life. I am learning that as much as hurts I will survive and that my love for him keeps him with me always. I am learning that this thing called life doesn't always go as planned.

I love you Bubby! With all of my everything - our souls connected forever - I grieve for you. Until the day we meet again ♥ watch over us. Love Cis

Monday, January 21, 2013

Organizing the Toys

Now that Christmas has come and gone my new task to to corral all the chaos. Typiclly in years past I have it done within a day or 2 of Christmas...this year however has been particularly challenging. It seems that A) our child receives WAY too many gifts B) his toys are quite large and hard to store C) We are crazy for letting it get to this point.

I have been hard at work though - our first chore (before Christmas) was to find a new home for his train table. Because we made it ourselves it was larger than your standard train table - in fact, it was 3'x6' and took up a HUGE footprint in our house. We had to move it or there would have been no room for Christmas this year. I spent a lot of time thinking and researching (ie scanning Pinterest) before we made our final choice. My inital thought was to build the table into a trundle but my son has a very small room (10x10) and giving up that amount of floor space so it could slide out would have taken the whole room. I realized that DUH if the table would fit under the bed then why not put it on the bottom of a bunk bed. So we did!

This is a standard bunk bed with slats across the bottom. You see his train table sit perfectly on the slats. We added and under the cabinet light below the top bunk to light the train table. There are plastic drawers in varying sizes (from Wal-Mart) under the bed and labeled to help him find AND put away his toys.


This is the opposite side of the bed. There are more storage drawers and some over-sized trucks that don't fit into the "garage". 

When you walk into his room you are bombarded greeted with a selection of toys and books. Again each clear plastic bin is labeled with a photo for ease of returning toys to their homes.  
(Eventually we will paint and put up curtains) 

Since we made these changes to his room he plays in here for hours at a time and he is proud to put his things away so he has a "fresh space" to play in the next day.

Here is the "garage" where all of his big trucks live. I love this - he can easily access any of his toys and easily return them to their home. It also serves as a barrier - when get gets a new truck that won't fit here then it's time to donate an older truck. This keeps me from have 2 "garages". *wink* That covers his bedroom. Now we had to organize the playroom/family room space.

Another hurdle is these Lego vehicles. He does play with them and dumping them into containers = broken vehicles that have to always be fixed. I am using this small closet shelf for right now but will be getting an Ikea Lack coffee table this weekend. It houses a large shelf underneath - PERFECT place for all of my his lego vehicles to park when not in use. Then he can also use the table top for play. Win/Win if you ask me.

This is a corner in the playroom/family. More buckets (from Dollar Tree) and I love these! They are large, stout, colorful AND were only $1 each!  I still have more organizing to get done - once my trip to Ikea has come and gone. I will update with the 2nd phase after that's all put together.