Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day

Memorial Day, it is a time for reflection. I am a cub scout leader and I have tried to teach the boys how important it is to honor our flag and what it stands for. We have learned how to treat it, take care of it, display it and fold it. The boys are very lucky to get invited every year to help the American Legion in the Memorial Day Flag Ceremony at the grave of the unknown soldier. This year I took my son and three of his friends to help the American Legion post flags at the graves of soldiers. They followed along in the cemetery as the men explained to them how they were walking through history. They showed the boys what markers to look for and to not just place the flag but to read the stones so they would know what rank the soldiers had and the war, if any, they served in. When one of the boys placed a flag on a grave of a soldier that served in the Civil War they realized that it wasn't just a story from their history books. That it now was a part of their own personal history. This had them all searching for markers and they even found some that the men had missed. I was very proud of the respect they showed that day. I know that it is one thing to be there with the kids as they do these things and another to wonder if it is reaching them. Well it is. I was doing a craft fair around a year ago at a church with a cemetery. My children and the children of a good friend were outside playing in the church yard. I saw them in the cemetery and I didn't feel it was appropriate for them to be playing in it and told them to stay out. Later I was told they were not playing in it as I had thought. The two youngest boys were finding the graves of soldiers, saluting and say the Pledge of Allegiance. It brought me to tears. A mother and a scout leader couldn't be prouder! Sometimes we should follow in their footsteps!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

We Have A Winner!

Congratulations to Liz Cooley! She is the lucky winner of our patriotic prize. She will have the choice of one handmade item from the pattern pictures shown. Liz you can email me at with the item of your choice. I can't wait to see one of them in the cafe. I will be going on a family vacation for a few days and I will get crafting as soon as I get back. Thanks to everyone who logged on and hit the like or follow button for my blog. We will have another giveaway at 100 people! So keep on following and next time you may be the lucky winner of some primitive crafts of your own. See you after vacation!

Patriotic Prize

All of you who have followed my blog, on the Facebook or the actual blog spot, will now be entered into to a drawing. Followers have now reached 54 people! I am so glad everyone is enjoying it. I will let one of the kids draw a name when they get home from school and the winner's name will be posted in Friday's blog along with the prize choices. I can't wait to see who the lucky winner is!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Three Dollar Find

I have been working today and I have a makeover for you that I found at a yard sale for three dollars. It was a wood cabinet so I knew I could make some changes. It had all the hardware and was pretty solid, I had to put some wood glue on one door. Once the door was finished I started the makeover! First I removed the not so great fabric from the doors and cleaned the entire piece with a damp cloth. I then removed all the hardware and doors. I measured and cut some chicken wire to replace the fabric on the doors. I dry brushed black paint on the chicken wire before adding it to the doors. I then painted the rest of the cabinet with two coats of black craft paint. After it was completely dry I put the doors back on and grunged it up with some sand paper. Keep in mind that the original paint will come through when you do the sanding. So if you want to hide the base coat go light on the sanding. I was fine with the paint showing because it matched the pulls I used on the finished cabinet. Once the sanding was done I wiped it off with a dry cloth. Then I used a cherry stain on it to bring out the base coat even more. I wiped off the stain immediately after applying. When the stain was dry I added the new hardware on the doors and let it dry in a well ventilated area. I now have a new cabinet! Cost with paint and free chicken wire is $5.86. Now that's what I call a deal. So go out and get your not so pretty deals and make them over!!!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Tag Sale Finds

In my book everyday is an adventure, sometimes they are small ones and others are big. This weekend was a small one. I went to a tagged estate sale on Friday and came home with goodies that I loved. And I fell in love with the old house that it was in. It was full of old furniture and fixtures. The price tag on all these items were a little too much for me so I took pictures, with permission of course. The layout was fantastic too. I could really see myself living in a house like this. There was even a room that would have been perfect for my crafts a perfect potting shed in the back and even a guest house for the in laws. It had a huge yard that the kids would love to make 4-wheeler tracks in. It was like living in the country with the ease of town. Anyway back to my finds. I got enamel wear, old wooden ladders, ball jar with a glass lid, small wooden bowls and even a porcelain top table among other items. All for the low price of thirty-one dollars. Part of the items I got Friday and others are when I had to go back today in case I missed something, and I had! And the best part everything was 20-50% off!! Gotta love that. I got the ladders off of the old potting shed one was on the front and the other was hiding on the back under the ivy. So even though I consider this to be a small adventure it sure had some big finds. When you are digging through sheds and boxes and find a jewel peeking out from under all the grime the dirt you have under your nails is worth it. Enjoy your adventures big and small.

Friday, May 14, 2010

New Growth

I am excited! I replanted my garden and it is starting to sprout. I know it seems a little late to plant but there are several plants that can be planted up until July. You will get a later harvest of course but any harvest is good for me. If you are doing a garden make sure to follow directions on the labels and you will not have the same problem I did. I planted everything too deep, I was afraid the birds would eat the seeds, and it does make a difference. Who knew? It sure is good to know that I am still able to learn new things. I also started some plants indoors before planting them in the garden. This was real fun to watch the growth of the plants and it was very easy to do with Peat Potts. The blackberries are blooming and the tomatoe plants are too! The onions are sprouting up and it looks alot like little blades of grass. And since it doesn't take much to make me happy every little sprout keeps me smiling. Now if I can just remember where I planted what? I was at my good friend Tracy's house today and in the garden we are doing together there is corn sprouting! Woo Hoo corn, can you believe it? I already have recipes spinning around in my head. Have you ever tried fried corn? Cut it off the cob, cook it in a skillet with a little milk and butter, yummy. So let's have it, what is growing in your garden?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Wonderful Sound of Music

Ok, so today my oldest son and the school band got to play The Star Spangled Banner at the Southern Illinois Miners first home game. It was great! The band is made up of mostly Jr. high students and there are a few high school students. The band director has built up the band from almost nothing at all. The school started an Alumni Band in order to have someone playing at events and gradually students started getting interested in music again. With the excitement and enthusiasm that Mr. Ben shows during class the band began to grow. And now we have almost thirty students in the program. And there are at least a dozen students at the elementary level starting to learn instruments in order to be in the band program. It is very exciting!They had a spring concert last week and in the words of one of my favorite teachers" you could see a real marching band in Eldorado's future". The kids have been working very hard and it is a joy to hear them practicing when you walk down the hallway of the school. It was such a loss for the school when there was no band at all. It was almost as if an entire era was lost. And to see the younger generation again turn to music as a hobby rather than turn to other activities chosen by most during these uncontrollable times is a complete blessing. And today I was honored to be the mother of a band member. The entire stadium was filled with children from schools all over and it was our kids that were chosen to perform, what an honor. So congratulations Eldorado School Band! If any of you know how to play an instrument whether you are just beginning or have played for years take time to share music with a child and enjoy your own blessings of music.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

small projects

Ok, I had a good Mothers Day but I have a sick husband and a sick child so I am in desperate need of a break. So I declare today to be time out Tuesday! So I went to the craft room and worked on a small project I have put off for a while. I got this wooden bowl almost a year ago on the way to a ball game. I had arrived early and stopped at a small junk store. And I got several treasures. I started off by cleaning the bowl with plain water. Then I stained the bowl with a cherry stain and sealer. I chose a stain with a sealer because the bowl had no sealer on it at all and I didn't want the paint to penetrate the wood. I let it dry completely and then added two coats of yellow okra craft paint. This may seem like a bright color but it will be tamed down later. I painted the entire bowl since there was a oil stain on the inside of the bowl that would not come out. Also make sure you allow the paint to dry between coats so that there is no streaking. Once the paint is dry I used a sanding sponge to age the bowl. The sanding sponge makes it easier to sand with the curve of the bowl. There is no wrong way to do this so go to town with the sanding if you want. After you sand it make sure to wipe it clean with a dry cloth and you are ready to apply your final coat of stain. Use a generous amount of stain to keep it smooth. You may leave the stain on like it is or wipe it off, it is your choice they both look good. This was a great project to do today since I could leave it and come back to it as needed. I hope this helps you with your refinishing projects and remember time outs are not always a bad thing!

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Mother's Day Weekend

Good Morning, and Happy Mother's Day! Today is a day to spend time with the family, like most Sundays. But when you can't always be with your family the next best thing is being with friends. And that is exactly what I did yesterday. And as a special treat for mothers day we went antique shopping!!! We only went to two places but that was all we needed. There is the cutest little place in Creal Springs that we just loved. There was so much stuff we had to look over everything again and again. She even let us look at her stored items in the barn. We had to climb over a farm gate and walk through chickens and genies to get there and I loved it. And when I spotted the tire of an old bicycle sticking out in the back I knew we were just like American Pickers! It was too much fun. By the time we left the van was loaded, from fly screens to little red wagons, we had it full. I even found an old galvanized wash tub. I can't wait to go back. Only next time we will have to take a truck! After shopping we also treated ourselves to dinner. But shh! Don't tell our husbands. It was a great day with a great friend, it doesn't get much better than that. I will leave you with a few pictures of our finds. And now it's time to go celebrate being a mom. I love my kids! Have a good day everyone.

Friday, May 07, 2010

In The Dirt

I like to garden. It can be flowers or veggies it doesn't matter, I like to have my hands in the dirt. The flowers I like because there are so many different options with them. You can get early bloomers, late bloomers, ornamental grasses, vines, it is hard to pick just a few. An the planting options are endless, in buckets, in beds, hanging baskets, or even the basket of a bicycle. There is no way to go wrong with flowers and I love them all. Even the pink girly ones. I use alot of ornamental grasses. I like that they need very little care and are hard to kill. Vegetables are a different story! We had a garden when I was younger, but this is the first year I have planted one myself. I have always had tomatoes but never a full garden. So far, I had three cucumber plants and two onions. After something ate them I was left with one onion. Yesterday I started over. This time I am using something to go around my plants to prevent, hopefully, any animals feeding on them. You can use almost anything round, and few inches tall. In my garden I used plain plastic cups because it is so small. I just cut the bottom out and popped the cup on wherever I placed a seed. In the garden that a friend and I are doing together we used plastic tubing about six inches tall and placed them around the store bought plants. If you are new to gardening or don't have alot of space I suggest using a container. It can be a large flower pot or a wading pool. Make sure it has drainage holes in the bottom fill with potting soil and your favorite vegetable, just follow the directions on the tag. Make sure the container you are using has enough room for the roots to grow down or out. If you place it in a container too small the plant will not thrive. And that's it! Place it in a sunny location, give it water and watch it grow. Wether you have a big garden, small garden or just one plant there is no better enjoyment then being able to feed your family from the work of your own two hands. Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

I Remember When

Today we are heading to St. Louis to see my cardiologist and the whole family is going. So the boys are happy they get out of school. When I have to go to these visits it makes me appreciate my family for going through all of this with me.When I think about when I was little my favorite family activity was "wash day". My parents were divorced and my father was sixty years old when I was born. So he was old fashioned about things, and I loved it! So when it came to wash day we were outside with the old wringer washer and galvanized tubs. We were all outside, all three girls and my dad. We spent the whole day outside together washing clothes. My dad and older sister would hang the clothes, and my twin sister and I would take turns pulling the clothes from the wash, running them through the wringer into the rinse tubs. Then we had to put them back through the wringer into another rinse tub before sending them off to get hung out to dry on the line. We loved running the clothes through so we had to take turns. I don't remember us ever complaining about it, we had fun. It seemed as if the day would fly by and then dad would go back to his junking and we had to go back to our mom's. She had an electric washer and dryer we were never aloud to touch it, which was fine because it wasn't as much fun.I would like to have times like that. Doing a project together with the whole family, spending the day having fun with no arguing aloud. Today these oldies but goodies are used for decoration and planters. They can be used any way you want. I don't have one yet, but I am on the lookout! The above picture shows how a friend has hers displayed and I love it. So if you have an old wringer washer or galvanized rinse tub let them remind you of family fun. Everyone have a good day and remember on Wednesday whatever goes!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Makeover Monday

In today's time we all want to save money. But we also want to keep our homes nice and relaxing for our families to enjoy. And let's face it the more we spend decorating the more work our husbands have to do to bring home the bacon. So I say look in places that you wouldn't normally find a primitive piece.Or at least think you will find one. I found this five arm chandelier in a ood Will store. It's arms were all loose and the color wasn't that great, but it was new in a box for $6.oo. Who can beat that! So I took it all apart, easy as pie, tightened all the arms and put it back together. I then used regular black, craft paint and painted the entire thing. It took two coats and I started from top to bottom to help prevent drips. Make sure to keep the brush wet to prevent streaks, but not wet enough to leave globs of paint or bubbles. I let it dry and topped it off with punched tin mini lamp shades that I bought at a favorite prim store here in town. I know you are thinking the shades were an expense, but I got them for a good deal and they make all the difference! I didn't distress this piece at all because I wanted the focus to be on the willow tree shades. Now if I can find the candle drip sleeves,that I have been holding onto for some time, and put them on with the shades the chandelier will be PERFECT! Happy Makeover Monday everyone, and don't be afraid to search for your bargains any where you can find them.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Adventure Sunday

Good morning from southern Illinois. After two nights of storms rolling through there is a lot of mess and muck outside. After a rain it's too wet to be in the garden or in the flower beds, which would normally mean it's a good day for crafting, but not today. I love taking pictures, so today I am going to head out on an adventure with the family to take some great water photos. The kids love to get out their rubber boots and get messy! And today is a perfect day for it since you can't step anywhere without getting dirty. I will post some pictures if I get any good shots today, but for now I will leave you with one I got right out in the yard. I just love how the drops of rain are just standing on the edge of the leaf. Take time today to have fun with the family.