Sunday, March 29, 2009

Pineapple Cutting Board Makeover

The other day I showed you the pineapple cutting board that I found at Goodwill. Well I finally got it finished, along with some other cutting boards. I haven't seen my kitchen table in days! lol! It has been covered in bottles of paint, stain, glaze, brushes, newspaper, cutting boards, and you name it! Thank goodness we have a dining room table (so we can eat). :)

Anyway, here's what it looked like before. I think I paid $2.99 for it. I usually only give no more than $1.99 for cutting boards, but I loved that this was a pineapple one!

And here it is now.

I had it painted the basic colors and had my ruler out to make the lines in the pineapple when Jason walked by and stood there looking it over. He picked up the ruler and started making the cross lines on it. He was making them smaller than I would have and was measuring things so exactly. I was planning on just "eyeing" it and making them about an inch or so apart using my ruler as a guide. I asked if maybe he'd like to look at a picture of one and his reply was, "No, I'm a MAN." lol! So, I let him go for it. After it was done, he said, "I should have looked at the picture." I really was appreciative and told him so, but I really did want those squares bigger. However, I just started working on it with the paints, followed by red oak stain, followed by antique glaze.

In the end, I really liked it. My dad dropped by and saw it on the table and commented on how he liked it, so I guess maybe we did alright. Now I'm tweaking in the kitchen trying to figure out where I want to put it. That will be for a future post, as I'm still moving things around trying it different ways.

And next I have to say, that if my mom doesn't hurry up and get her blue cupboard, she's going to have a hard time getting it! Remember it's over here because she has to wait until all the paint/polyurethane smell is gone because of her allergies. So, it sat in our dining room....until Joy and I moved it, that is. I got to thinking how well it would look at the end of my hall because a cabinet of some sort is on my wish list for Jason to build just for that spot. Now I'm getting really used to it there! I'm thinking the wallpaper in the hall needs to come down and we could paint the hall, and that blue cupboard would be perfect. I'm looking for a good excuse to do that anyway! All I can say is Mama better hurry up, because I sure am liking that cupboard! :)

Well have a great Sunday! Thanks for stopping by! :)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Faithful Fridays - "The Little Purple Dress"

I realize that Faithful Fridays and "The Little Purple Dress" don't possibly sound like they could go together, but for me they do.

Almost 27 years ago, when I was married for just two weeks, I spotted a little purple baby dress that I fell in love with. Now mind you, I said TWO weeks after being married. Not that I planned on babies that soon, but I've always loved kids and knew that I wanted to be a mom and preferrably have a house full of them....or at least three. Jason and I had talked; he said two and then we'll see! I said three. Well sometimes God has other plans.

When the time came that we felt we were ready for a baby, it just wasn't happening according to our plans. This was about two years after we were married. From that point on, we pursued building our family. Looking back on it is much easier than going through it though. I love the quote, "God won't bring you to anything that he won't bring you through". How true that is. However, the one thing I was sure of was that we were to be parents. I always saw myself as a mom and never believed otherwise, although at times it was tough. I thought I could never go to another baby shower just wasn't fair. As a matter of fact, we went through the pregnancy of a friend's daughter that was fourteen.....yes, fourteen! I just couldn't understand why. But all the while, the little purple dress hung in the closet.

We explored all avenues of building our family and decided upon international adoption, although we didn't have a clue how or where we would get the finances to pursue this. We just trusted God. And although there were many hurdles to jump and red tape, the Lord blessed us with our son, Colt, adopted from Korea, after seven years of marriage! We were (and are) so blessed. I knew God had this little baby boy planned all along to be ours, even from that day that I bought that little purple dress. Now mind you, I didn't make Colt wear the purple dress, but I do have to admit to trying it on him one day while Jason was at work (when he was the right size to fit into it) with my mom as an accomplice. (I really hope Jason and Colt aren't reading this today)! Oh how I loved my baby boy and life with him!

I was so thankful to be a mom and savored and treasured every moment. But, I kept coming back to the scripture about being the "joyful mother of children". Notice that's plural....children? So my faith was firm. I wanted another baby....actually we did, but the desire was stronger with me. I was thankful and blessed with our precious baby boy, if one was what the Lord had for us, but the desire of my heart was for another child. I continued to pray.

When Colt was about two years old, we had met with a birth mother and I even planned to be in the delivery room with her. The lawyer had all the papers drawn up and things were ready to go. But for some reason, neither Jason nor I could get peace about this. We decided for some reason, this wasn't supposed to be. We called and backed out of this adoption. I can see how trusting the Lord in this situation was the best thing now.....because we found out that when the baby was born, she decided to keep her....a little girl. I would have been devastated.

So many more years passed and still the little purple dress hung in the closet. I have to admit a few times it crossed my mind to give it to a friend's daughter or at a baby shower (with its tags still attached and all), but God tugged at my heart. At this point, that little purple dress was most definitely a symbol of my faith. I continued to pray. We explored all options again, including fertility treatments. When Colt was 9 years old, we found out we were expecting. Twins run in our family and it was possible with the fertility treatments, so I had twin girls' names picked out. When we found out it was one baby.......Jason and I picked out names for both boy or girl. However, I KNEW it was a girl. When the ultrasounds confirmed this many times, we picked out the name......Joy (my mother's middle name) and Maxine (Jason's mother's middle name). Her daddy was to call her Joy Max. I even prayed, "Lord if you would be nice if she had brown eyes...I've always wanted a brown-eyed girl to go along with my brown-eyed boy". And so it was to be. She had the brownest eyes from day one. God is so good.

We were also told that our baby girl would have Down's Syndrome. For about a week, I was worried. After that, we had peace. Honestly, we were prepared if it was to be, but we didn't believe she would be. As a matter of fact, when she was born and the doctor said, "Here she is, and boy is she a pretty thing", I didn't even think to ask. I never asked. I KNEW she was healthy. And only God can give you that kind of faith and that kind of peace. I often think about the people that might have aborted the baby because they were told this. We were even asked to do an amniocentesis, but I wouldn't risk miscarriage, so we refused. We knew no matter what, this was God's plan for us....our little baby girl.

Here's a picture of Joy wearing the purple dress when she grew to fit it. It's so funny that she was born with a head full of black hair, then lost most of it about this age (at 6 months), then when it grew back, it was blonde.

So you see that little purple dress was a symbol of faith for both of my babies. I actually wanted a little boy, then a little girl....although healthy babies would have been blessing enough! God gave me the desires of my heart.

And just to tell you about that third baby I wanted. A little while after Joy was born (I was 35 when she was born), I did want another. I prayed about it. Jason felt he was getting "too old" and kept thinking about how old he would be when the baby would be a certain age. You know how men think with their brains and we ladies sometimes just think with our hearts sometimes? Well, I began to pray that the Lord would either change Jason's mind or take away the desire for another baby with me. This time, He worked on me. He gave me peace in my heart in knowing that our family was complete. God is good that way. He answers our prayers in different ways and gives peace accordingly.

God made us a family. We are so blessed.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Paint, Antique Glaze, and Stain (My Friends)

Last week when I showed the wooden bowl makeover from Goodwill, I had a couple of people ask about paint and antiquing glaze. I know I'm always curious when I see others paint and distress. I wonder what color they used, what type it is, the method they used to distress, I thought there might be more people out there interested. If not, at least these two people can see it! :)

I actually tend to use whatever I have on hand when it comes to paint. We have used plenty of the custom mixed barn red/burgundy paint that we used on our back door and stepback cupboard. I have also used the color we painted our dining room (because we had it on hand). But usually when I sit down to work on a crafting project, I pull out the little bottles of craft paint that you can purchase in Hobby Lobby, Michaels, and even Walmart. Personally, I tend to find more colors I like in the Americana or Folk Art Brand, but I also use some of the Apple Barrel ones too. Most of these are about $1.00 a bottle (but this is a small bottle).

Someone asked about the color I used on this bowl. I used Americana brand called Heritage Brick.

I use a combination of two different brushes. I use a regular brush and then the sponge type brush. If I want to see brush strokes or go lightly over something, I use the bristle type brush. Most often, I use the sponge type. I find I can control how heavy or light I want with it fairly easily.

This bowl, after having about 3 coats of paint (because I was painting over that fruit, remember?), was distressed with antiquing glaze. I love this glaze. It tones down colors and makes them more muted, which I think makes them look even richer, yet prim.

We buy it at Lowes and if I remember correctly, it is only about $6 to $8 a bottle. And believe me, this stuff goes a long ways! We have done many projects that include many pieces of furniture, walls, and small crafts and this is only the second bottle (maybe third) that we've used. It is made by Valspar and called Antiquing Glaze:

To apply it, use the bristle type brush shown above. You may dilute it half and half water to glaze. If I'm working on a small craft project, I just get out a couple of Tbsp. and then add that same amount of water. However, if I am working with a dark color, I don't dilute it at all. I use it full strength, or if I want a really distressed look, I do the same.

The trick to this is to put it on the very tip of your brush and use light strokes of the wrist, back and forth.

This is a surprise project that I'll show you in a couple of days when I can bring it in. Jason was working on this one and I was photographing.

Here he even let Joy do it. See how simple it is? I hope this helps. If I didn't make something clear or you have more questions, email me or leave it on a comment and I'll try to make it clearer!


Another project I tackled yesterday was this old window frame that hangs above my couch. Here's what it looked like. You may remember seeing it from a previous post. (Remember you can click on the picture to view it up can see just how white it seems when you look closer).

It was really "bugging" me that it was so white, even though it had a little dark distressing here and there. So....again, I used what I had on hand. I didn't want to use the antiquing glaze here because I didn't want it to still look white distressed. I really wanted to alter the color a little. So, I pulled out all of our stains and ended up deciding on the Mini Wax Red Oak. I rubbed it on with a rag over the entire it two coats. This is how it looks now!

I just love it so much better! It doesn't look so stark against my walls. It seemed to instantly cozy up that spot behind the couch. It coordinates much better with my couch now, toning down the white and making the muted color that fits in much better! If I could just add some things that are in my mind's eye now and make some prim changes, it will look even better. But until then, this did help out. I love that stain!


Just to show you a sneak peek at something else I'm working's what I found at Goodwill a couple of weeks ago. I forgot to take a picture then. It's a great pineapple cutting board. As I'm still working on it, I'll show you the outcome in another post real soon!


And one more thing.......Patty over at Blessed Beyond, posted this wonderful Creamy Cheesey Potatoes recipe on her blog and I made it last night for supper. I have to tell you that we loved it! We had enough left over to go with our meal tonight! It is a crockpot recipe! Thanks for sharing, Patty!

And that is it for today! We're off to a field trip (during our Spring Break)! Thanks to you all for honoring me with your visits and comments! I appreciate them all! Have a great Thursday! :)

~ Tammy ~

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Gifts From Sweet Bloggin' Friends & Some More Thrifty Finds

Usually I "get in trouble" if I wait too long to post on my blog from my friend Betty (the one we went to see this weekend). Joy calls her Aunt Betty and her husband, Uncle Richard. They're friends, but she's known them all her life and I've known them even longer, so they're more like family, thus the Aunt and Uncle names! Anyway, I was excused from posting on my blog since I was actually there, but she is always quick to let me know if I wait too long.....she's disappointed if she clicks on there and it's the same post. We're home now, and it's our Spring Break, so I don't have any excuses (that she'll accept anyway), so it's time for a new post! :)

I'm going to begin with the order in which these things happened. First of all, in one of my posts about a week ago, I showed you all some decorating I had done without spending any money....just moving things around and tweaking. Well in that post, I happened to mention that fact that I was eventually going to add some prim labels to my cheese crocks. Susan (Primitive Preacher's Wife) emailed me and offered some extra labels that she insisted she wouldn't use, and I graciously accepted. Susan and I have exchanged some emails and I've gotten to know the kind person behind this gesture a little more. Thank you Susan, so much, for passing these my way!

But...that's not all she sent me....that's what she SAID she was sending! When the box arrived, it was much too big for just labels! Inside it was also this rustic prim Americana flag.

Oh, how excited I was! I had just the spot for it!

Thank you, Susan, for both the labels and the flag! I haven't had a chance yet to get the labels on my crocks, but I'll be sure and show them when I do! This was so sweet of you!

Then this past weekend while at our friends house, we did a little shopping, and although I found some things I would have liked to have in a little shop with mostly primitives, the only place I actually spent any money was in the junkiest and thriftiest spots. Here's what I bought.

The crock will be used as is, of course, in a primitive gathering. The rest will get a makeover. I'll be sure to show you when I get to them!

And last but definitely not least, is another most generous gift from a blogging friend. There was a package waiting on our front porch when we came home this weekend from Janae of Cozy Coops Corner and Liberty Hill Primitives. Inside were gifts for both Joy and me! For Joy was the cutest little bunny with the most beautiful long eyelashes! And look what it says around her neck....."Be Joyful". How thoughtful!

Of course, Joy will have more to say over on her blog sometime today too! So be sure and stop by there and see the pictures I took of her before she opened her bunny! Needless to say, Joy was very excited and the little bunny looks adorable in her room on her bed!

And for me, my very own prim bunny! Oh how excited I was!

I knew immediately that my bunny would go on my table bench to keep the little bowl of berries and eggs company! I just LOVE this bunny! Isn't it adorable? Can you see what's stitched on it? Blessings....I love that!

Also included in the box was the bay leaves bag!

I already had a nail in place on the side of my stepback cupboard waiting for the right touch and I knew immediately that this was it! I had already seen some of her little seed bags on her selling blog and I loved them! This is perfect!

Thank you so much, Janae, this was just the sweetest generous gift! I love it, actually WE love our gifts, both Joy and me! :)


A couple of people asked about the primming of the wooden bowl in a previous post. I'll tell more about that on my next post.

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you all have a terrific Tuesday! :)

Friday, March 20, 2009

Faithful Fridays - Answered Prayers

How can it possibly be Friday already?

Today for Joy's Faithful Friday, I have a couple of things to share.

First of all, if you read my homeschooling post this past Tuesday, and a post a couple of weeks ago, you'll remember when we had the snow over the weekend. Well one thing I didn't tell you was that our son, Colt, as a manager of a local steakhouse, has to close often. Well that particular Saturday night he was coming home in the snow, very late....almost midnight, and his car started spinning around. He thought he was going to hit a bridge, but his car spun around and stopped in the median facing the direction he had been going in the first place. He didn't hit the bridge or anyone else. He just couldn't move...stuck. He was fine. His car only had a bit of bumper damage. Remember, we're not accustomed to driving in snow around here! We usually try to stay home or stay put as much as we can! There's no doubt in my mind that the Lord was watching over him. This is something I pray over my family everyday, His protection throughout our day. I'm so thankful for this. It could have turned out so differently. I know God sent his angels to guide that car safely until it was at a standstill. Of course, Colt called us, shaken up, but he was fine.

Secondly, there has been a House Bill in our State that has been in committee. This bill was not good for homeschoolers. We had emailed and called our Representatives about this. I believe we must act, and put legs on our prayers, and stand up and speak out if we want to make and see a difference. Well it came down to needing to go to our State Capitol to be outside the committee meeting room to talk with our Representatives as they came in to that meeting. My friends, and fellow homeschooling moms, Lori and Jayne (and I), got up early this morning and drove to our State Capitol (about a 2 hr. drive one way). Believe me when I say, this was WAY OUT of my comfort zone as well as their's! But we firmly believed we must go and take a stand if we cared about preserving this freedom, and making sure our voice was heard. Well we all prayed about this as well, mostly prayed, actually. Long story shorter, while we were there, we learned that the sponsor of this bill put it into interim study (today), which basically means that it's dead, for at least two years (or possibly longer). This is a great win....and an answer to prayer. And in the midst of all this today, we had a great time of fellowship (no kids...just us three ladies). That's a rare thing when you're a homeschooling mom!

If you have something to share for Faithful Friday, post it on your blog, then click over to Joy's blog (Doodlebug) and let her know in a comment that you participated, so we can all go over and take a look!


On my last post, in the comments, I had a couple of people ask about the method I used to antique the bowl and wooden box. Within the next few days, I will post how I did it and the supplies used. Believe me, it is simple. I only do simple stuff! So be sure and stop by!


And look what I have to look forward to this weekend! I love to sit down and savor it! Actually, we'll be going out of town, and I have all that time in the car to pour over the pages.

And see this? This is Karen's home! I took a picture of this page, because I have always loved her bedroom especially! It's simply prim! Actually I love it all! I can't wait to look through all the pages featuring her home and more!


Blessings to you all! Have a great weekend!

~ Tammy ~

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Goodwill Makeovers, Awards, and a Giveaway

This weekend and into Monday, I worked on a couple of my Goodwill finds. I had many more in the pile but just didn't make it to them yet. So they still sit in a corner of my dining room patiently waiting. I will feel like I would have so many "new" prim goodies if I can ever find time to get to them!

Here's what I did get done:

Remember the wooden bowl I picked up for $5 at a flea market that had the fruit inside.....

Here it is now. I plan to put dried pears in it (when they arrive).

And this wooden box was also a Goodwill find (shown here with the rolling pin and basket).

It will most likely have a home on the back of the toilet when we redo our bathroom, which is our next home improvement project (just waiting for that tax refund check). As a matter of fact, I took a picture of it here in the bathroom so you could see what a nice fit it is for the back of a toilet. (Is it proper to be saying "toilet" on here?)

I know it doesn't match now, but before long, it will be right at home there. I will probably put some soaps with prim labels.....still on the lookout for just the right things for that. I'll be sure and show you when it's filled.

Can you tell I am still in love with my barn red/burgundy, distressed of course (with antiquing glaze). I think I will never tire of it! Red just makes me happy!

Next today, I'd like to thank Amber,Joy, and Gigi for the Berry Sweet Award. It was "berry" sweet of you to think of me! (I always find it so hard to pick people as I've said before, so I invite anyone that would like to display it on their blog to do so, as my gift to you too).

Amber also just presented me with the Sisterhood Award as well. Amber is the daughter of Karen of Homespun Simplicity. She is a sweet girl and I know we are sisters in Christ too!

Anne of Seasons of the Past, is having a wonderful Spring Renewal Giveaway. Just look at what all is included! If you would like to be included in this giveaway, click over and enter today for this giveaway in April! (But I really want to give these goodies a home here)! :)


If you haven't "seen" me awhile on your blog, please don't give up on me! It's been a very busy last couple of weeks. We don't have to go to dance class tonight (it's their spring break), so I really hope to sit down with my laptop and stop by for visits. Thanks so much for all your visits and comments! I love reading them so much! :)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Watcha Workin' On Wednesday - "The Blue Cupboard"

I intended on sharing a couple of my Goodwill makeovers with you, but I have something even better to share that was basically the work of my hubby!

I came home last night and Jason had the final touches on my mom's little cupboard. He had brought it into our dining room and even had put the little prim bowl and basket on top (he's really trained well now isn't he)? She really loves the color blue and I have to say that I do love how it turned out. I know blue is making a come-back, but even if it wasn't, I would still just love this cabinet.

You know how photos don't exactly capture the exact tone...this picture seems to show it a little brighter than it really is. The color is called Antique Blue and it is distressed with antique glaze.

The knobs were done with just the antique glaze as well as the glaze rubbed over the chicken wire screen in the door.

My mom has problems with chemical smells such as the finish on this cabinet, so Jason brought it in here. He called my mom this evening for her to come over and take a look at it (and to see how much of a smell it was to her). I kept telling her that it smelled way too strong and probably never would have the smell gone for good......she'd just have to leave it over here, but she just doesn't believe me! :)

She loved it and I knew she would. It wasn't a surprise to her that he was making it, but she didn't know exactly how. We started with a picture that she sort of liked and made changes, then she left it to Jason and me to find the blue, distress, and just do what we wanted.

And here's the table bench he made her for Christmas. We hadn't painted it yet, until we knew for sure whether she wanted her cupboard stained or painted, so her table bench could be the same. (That's the way she wanted it).

Poor Jason doesn't realize just how long my wish list is growing for his workshop! Well I think he's just been briefed on it now! I'm so glad he's talented in this area, because otherwise I just wouldn't have all these prim goodies! I asked him to keep that hammer handy! :)

Thanks for stopping by! Thank you for the kind comments about our Geography Fair in yesterday's post!

To see what everyone else has been up to for Watcha Workin' on Wednesdays, click over to Leslie's blog!

Have a great day! :)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Homeschool Open House - Our Geography Fair

At the last Homeschool Open House, (sponsored by Tammy of Lattes and Lollypops), I had hoped to be far enough long on our Geography Fair project to share with you. However, we were still in the research stage. This was the second year for our local homeschool group to have a Geography Fair. Last year, I was sick with mono and my mom took Joy to make her presentation and set up her exhibit. This year, all was well; I didn't have to miss out on all the fun and it was great!

Joy decided awhile back that she wanted to study the country of India. Last year, we read the book, A Little Princess (through our Sonlight curriculum), and part of it takes place in India. This book sparked the interest. And just a plug for this book, if you haven't read it to your children, it's a must-read. It is just a story that makes you want to do good, be good, and do what's right with a cheerful heart inspite of your circumstances.

But back to India, our first step was a stack of books on India. Joy and I took turns reading them aloud to each other and making notes as we went along. She decided on the parts of India she would like to present the most. With this gathered information, she and I put together an exhibit of India.

Back on our snow day (with big snowflakes falling outside our bay window), we made our salt dough map of India. This was lots of fun!

After shaping the country, Joy made the Himalaya mountains, and then painted the entire map. I made the little flags for her to put on the map. She marked the three major cities (one of them being the capital city of Delhi), Taj Mahal, and the Himalaya mountains with the little flags.

We both had lots of fun doing this and it was just a perfect afternoon for making it. (After there was enough snow on the ground, we were done with it and we went outside to play).

In addition to making the map, she made a lapbook of India. If you don't know what a lapbook is, let me explain a minute. It's a file folder folded together like a shutter.

Inside this folder are mini booklets folded in many ways, such as pop-outs, etc.., that have information accumulated from things studied about India. I found the templates for all of these on India from Homeschool Share. After cutting them out, Joy filled her booklets with all the information she learned. Then together, we worked on placing the booklets inside to fit.

We added an extra fold out sheet because she had so many little booklets.

Not only are lapbooks fun to make, they are great review tools. She can pull out her India lapbook at any time and review all the facts she accumulated about India.

Joy also did some additional research on Taj Mahal (one of the Seven Wonders of the World) , Gandhi (Political figure), Amy Carmichael (missionary to India), and Mother Teresa (Roman Catholic Nun). She made mini reports on each of these and placed all of these on her exhibit board along with photos of other interesting facts, including India's flag and Lotus Temple.

The Geography Fair was held on March 3rd. There were 12 families that participated in the fair. Others families that didn't do an exhibit, still came to enjoy and browse the fair. The idea was to set up an exhibit sharing all she had learned. She had 3-5 minutes for an oral presentation. She shared some little Indian wafer cookies with everyone that we purchased from an Indian store nearby.

After giving her oral presentation (decked out in her sari and sarong), she stamped everyone's passport with a stamp of Taj Mahal.

That was the way it worked. We moved around the gym letting each family share about their country with several of them dressed in traditional attire from the country they represented. The children ranged in ages from 4 to about 14. After they finished, they would stamp the passport of each child.

After all the presentations, were done, we walked around and browsed at each table more and the kids (and adults) sampled foods from around the world.

Here's one for my Canadian friends.....Joy's friend, Molly Grace, presented Canada. She was decked out as a Royal Mountie.

Friends from around the world....Indian girl meets Mountie....

We really had a great time! It was very educational! I can't wait until next year. Next year, our group is considering doing the United States only and every family will pick a state. I think this will be a nice change since we did countries last year. Joy presented South Korea last year and really enjoyed doing that one as the birth country of her brother!

Countries that were represented during this year's Geography Fair were: Serbia, Mexico, (Island of) Okinawa, India, Canada, Ancient Rome, Cambodia, Zimbabwe, Ancient Persia, Ukraine, Italy and Japan. Here's a snapshot taken of the kids after the fair (there could have been some kids missing but we tried to rally them all together).

I hope you enjoyed your trip around the world today! Thanks for stopping by! Next Homeschool Open House, I plan to share some of the field trips we've taken recently.


I finally had a chance to work on a few of Goodwill finds and give them a makeover. Stop by tomorrow to take a look and with a day or so, my mom's cupboard should be completed and I'll show you how it turned out!

Have a great Tuesday! :)