Friday, November 30, 2012

A Small Before and After

We recently bought a small furniture piece on clearance. I'm sure the salespeople wondered how many times I was going to come in and look at it before deciding to buy it.

We put it in the basement and there it sat for a few weeks. Actually, I wasn't sure I'd made the right decision in purchasing it. But after looking at it for awhile, I began to have some ideas...

This looks like a crime scene, but it's actually me trying to decide how a certain size rug would look there - with the use of masking tape.  Have you ever done the same thing? It made perfect sense to me:)

I tried out a mirror I had bought for our dining room from Hobby Lobby. It looked wonderful above it, but I really wanted to keep it in the dining room. We hadn't seen any more of these mirrors there, but after going in for another look, we found the same mirror for 50 % off. My husband's words to me when he saw the discounted price were, "God must really love you."

Next, we added a lamp from T.J. Maxx and my rug from an online site.

I love how it came out!

 See the couch in the background in our basement? I call it the couch that will not die. The couch and loveseat have been great - almost too great. We bought them in 1995 and they have survived 6 children. But I am ready for them to wear out already!

What have you been working on in your home this week? This time of year makes me want to create pretty things.

Happy Holiday season!

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Pottery Barn Knock Off - The Mayflower

Last year, I was admiring this Thanksgiving item at Pottery Barn Kids. But it had a big price tag. If I remember correctly, it was about $50.00.

My husband and I were at Walmart and I spotted this wooden item back in the floral department by the vases, etc.  I thought it looked an awfully lot like a boat. And then I started thinking some more...

I went ahead and bought it, plus a few dowel rods, and some spanish moss to place inside. My husband thought he could put it all together with a few sails made from posterboard. My husband Dave is a great man! He always humors me in my holiday ideas:)

Then we added a few pinecones and voila! A Pottery Barn knock-off for a mere ten bucks and change!

We put this on the kids' table last year and it will make an appearance there this year as well. (Also, your older kids could even help in making this craft with you.)  I have a PB kids Thanksgiving tablecloth that I purchased several years ago also that completes their holiday table. They all seem to enjoy having a "special" table, too:)

A little ingenuity can go a long ways! Happy Thanksgiving!

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Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Pain of Invisibility

Are you a quiet, background kind of person? Do you ever feel that you blend right into the wallpaper? Me, too. I feel a little invisible at times.

My (pastor) husband is the exact opposite. He loves people. He thrives in a roomful of people, while I feel exhausted if I've been around a group for a couple of hours.

I often struggle with the feeling that I'm not very important in the grand scheme of things, except in my own home. I love the mundane, ordinary things of life...laundry (well, most of the time), baking, grocery shopping, home schooling, being a mom. I love that I've been able to be home and be with my children during their growing up years and that I still have one "little one" to snuggle with. (I think a 7 yr. old still qualifies as a little person, don't you?)  I love hearing his feet coming down the stairs in the morning and seeing his sleepy face and tousled hair. I am so grateful!

But when I am away from home, I often struggle in finding my place. Even though I am in my forties, I sometimes feel like I've forgotten how to talk with "big" people. I feel like I am not very interesting. For example, when I've been out with my husband and a guest speaker for lunch, it can be almost excruciating because I honestly don't know what they are talking about much of the time and wouldn't know how to contribute to their conversation. My life is still about Sponge Bob, Drake and Josh, Disney Channel, recipes, phonics, and American Literature! But this is when my mind has to be renewed. It's a choice I have to make by putting the right thought into my mind, rather than the wrong one. I can tell myself that what I have to say is important.  I think this improves with practice. It isn't easy undoing years of the wrong thought patterns, but it can be done.

Eighth and ninth grade were torturous for me because being quiet was not the norm. That lead me to believe that I was faulty and that something was wrong with me. This belief creates a vicious cycle of thinking that is hard to break out of.

But I've come to know that being quiet also has a lot to offer. I like listening to people's thoughts and feelings, what they are struggling with, and believing with them that God will work their situation out for the best. I don't find it boring when someone is sharing their heart with me. Sometimes people just need to know that someone is willing to listen.

If you struggle with being quiet or feeling inferior in some way, I would love to agree with you that God will reveal to you that He delights in the way He made you. He can help you in the areas you may need help with, but He doesn't want to start from scratch with you and redesign your personality. You are valuable to Him just the way you are. He wants you to walk in the freedom of the knowledge of your value to Him. When we truly "know" how He looks at us, it changes the way we see ourselves.

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