Friday, July 29, 2011

Pallet Art & Some Thank You's

I MUST start out this post with a HUGE

Thank you

for the wonderfully encouraging comments on my French Flower Pots!
It was fun knowing that they inspired so many of you to try your hand at this technique.

Thank you to all my new followers, too!
I'm truly glad to meet you and am looking forward to getting to know you better!

And last, but not at all least ~

Thank you to Vanessa and Heather

for featuring me this week at
Simply Sundays.

Simply Sundays is a beautiful place of inspiration,
and a testament of their love and faith in God.

So, be sure to stop by there for your weekly devotion.

Now ~
are you ready?

I have another project you just may want to try your hand at.


I've been busy.
Real busy.

It's been incredibly hot and muggy here in Michigan
so I've been hiding out indoors,
appreciating the AC
with Maizie happily by my side.

This project was inspired by Pottery Barn.
Gotta love that Barn.

Our next door neighbor was busily cleaning out his pole building last week,
when he came trotting over with some pallet-type things.
Dusty, dirty, spider-webby.
Some had hinges on them,
so they must have been some type of gate or something at one point.

He asked if I could use them for anything.


"Are you serious?"

Well, you know those light bulb moments that I have once in a while...
when I'm really lucky?

Well, the light bulb went on immediately
and I practically grabbed those pallets from his hands
giggling like a little school girl.

He must'ave thought I was a nut-job.

But that would be nothing new.
A lot of people think that.

I think he was glad that it was just one more pile of crap he didn't have to haul away.

He also gave me these.

Ohhhh, yeah - baby.

I know exactly what these will soon become.

But you've got to wait.
That's for another post...

Anyway, that pile of pallet-thingies sat by my potting bench
awaiting my light bulb moment to come to fruition.

After a good scrubbing,
and a lonnng time drying out in the hot, humid weather,
(things just don't dry with 73% humidity in the air)
I hauled three of them inside and down to the nice, cool basement.

Before I could begin working on them....

we lost power.

Remember those four days
of maniac crafting in the semi-dark?

They sat down there for a couple days until I decided
to make like a modern day pioneer woman
and pull out my little Energizer lantern -
along with my stencils, paint, transfer paper, and brushes.

What else was there to do....??

I dragged the pallets up into the kitchen,
and off to work I went.

{Cloudy skies + drawn shades + no lighting = very poor photos. So, my apologies.
Let's just pretend it's a very rustic look....}

After deciding what verbiage I wanted on each pallet,
I traced the letters onto the wood...

and discovered that I'm still a little "word-spacing-challenged",
but I'm working on it.
Really, I am.

 Dry-brushing this pallet with a little watered down white paint
gave it a driftwood look.

And then, to the hum of my little lantern
and Maizie snoring at my feet,
I began painting.

And painting.
And painting.
And painting.

Letter by letter,
word by word...

with no noise from TV or radio ~
(nor the generator unfortunately)

I have to admit that
it was actually quite a peaceful, fulfilling job.

After a few back-breaking hours,
the "Live" pallet was completed!

I completed the "Sunshine" pallet the next day.

And the third day,
the larger whitewashed "Beach Rules" pallet was finished.

[Before distressing]

[After distressing and waxing]

I added a very light coat of paste wax to them all
for protection and a slightly finished look,
and they are ready to take to Doster Emporium to sell.
 [You can find Doster Emporium on Facebook now!]

Though....I may hang on to "Sunshine".....

she makes me happy.

So, there you go.

Another reclaimed,
saved from the burning pile.



What'cha think?
Will they sell?

{ Hugs }

PS...Some of you asked some questions on my French Flower Pot post, but didn't leave an email so I could get back to you with an answer.  So I answered them all (I hope) in the comment area of that post!

[I'm linking with the parties at the lower right of my sidebar.
Just click on the buttons to meet some new friends and a ton of inspiration!]

Friday, July 22, 2011

French Flower Pots

Remember my four days without power?

My four days of indulging in sporadic crafting when we turned the generator off
to save gas?

(I did get one load of laundry washed before the power went out.
I ended up spreading it all out on the deck furniture to dry.
I didn't want to disturb the bluebird babies in the birdhouse hanging on the clothesline pole. me or leave me.....)

My four days of intense crafting....

sometimes by Energizer Weather Ready lantern light?

(Talk about reliving "Little House on the Prairie"...)

Well, here's another one of the ways
I kept myself busy.

French flower pots -
the type that look like they've been around for centuries -

make my heart sing.

Old and chippy,
faded and worn.

After reading on a few blogs about using Mod Podge as a transfer medium,
I wanted to try my hand at it on a few terra cotta flower pots.
I scrounged around and found some in our barn.

First, I whitewashed them all with a little watered down white paint,
and splotched on some light gray paint around the bottom with a paper towel.

 I laid one of them on a kitchen towel and held it in place with a couple plastic cooking spoons so that it wouldn't roll away from me.

I took a French typography graphic that I downloaded from Karen's sweet site,
darkened it a wee bit in Picnik
and flipped it horizontally before printing it.

I cut out the graphic so I wouldn't have so much paper to deal with.

Next, I took my Mod Podge 
(use Outdoor Mod Podge if your pots will be placed outside)
and swiped it on the graphic.

[Please ignore the ugly counter top.  I dream of granite....]

I centered it on the pot and rubbed it smooth.

Now, this technique does work on pots with a curvy figure, also.
It just takes a little more finagling.

The hardest part was the waiting -
with no peeking.

I let it dry overnight.

In the morning,

(in my jammies, before my shower - and after the generator was started up - 
because I just HAD to find out if this technique actually worked...)

I dampened the graphic with a wet sponge
and started ever so gently rolling the paper off with my fingers.

I swear I could hear drum roll in the distance as my heart beat faster.....

And voila!

It worked!!

After letting them all dry,
I sprayed them with a couple coats of clear, matte acrylic for protection.

I did one with the date of hubby's and my anniversary.

This pot is just French chic heaven...

[These pots are for sale at Doster Emporium.]

One note I want to add regarding this technique:

Becca from Gardeners to Bergers made a pretty aviary sign and painted
washable Elmer's Glue on one side of the paper before she printed off her graphic.
She said it helped the graphic stick better as you exposed it when you rubbed off the paper.
It was a technique I had never heard of nor tried -
but I certainly plan to.

So, the next time you lose power,
and your generator is turned off
and you just don't know what to do with yourself...

grab those plain, boring flower pots
and give them some French country farmhouse chic!

No need to do them by lantern light, either.....

{ Hugs }

Linking to the parties on the lower right of my sidebar this week!
Just click on the buttons and you'll find yourself inspired
and making all sorts of new friends!

Friday, July 15, 2011

In Our Home

FOUR DAYS of being without power.
FOUR DAYS of hearing our generator run outside our door.
(Thank you, Lord, for generators.)
FOUR DAYS of being careful not to run anything unnecessary requiring electricity.
FOUR DAYS of projects being knocked off my list! of the projects I tackled was this:

One large old rickety frame + one piece of MDF board from Home Depot = 

one awesome chalkboard.


Take one old frame
found while dumpster diving.

(DD is my part-time job, you know...)

Paint it.

Let it sit around in your basement for many years
because you don't know what to do with it.

Look at it once in a while,
and maybe place it on the side table in your kitchen just because you feel slightly creative ~  
and admire the beautiful paint job you did on it.

Put it back in your basement
because you still don't know what to do with it
and it really looked kinda boring leaning on that wall.

Start blogging one evening
and look up to see that your husband is gazing at you with a funny expression on his face.

He wants to know what that light bulb is doing over your head.


Just calmly explain that you were just greatly inspired by a blog friend
and now you know what to do with that gigantic frame sitting in the basement.

Drive like a mad woman to Home Depot for a piece of MDF board
and some chalkboard paint.

Attempt to stay focused on the task at hand as you wander the aisles.

Do not drool over that shiny new refrigerator.
Do not caress the awesome outdoor barn-style lights.
Do not attempt to put that wood flooring that you want for your entry, 
in your cart.

Stay focused......

Stay focused.....

Really focused....

When you arrive safely back home,
prime the MDF board in your basement next to your elliptical trainer 
that you've neglected this week so far.

(You've been very busy with projects, you know.)

{Ignore the ugly rug.  We inherited it with the house....}

Give it three coats of chalkboard paint.

{Try not to take blurry photos while getting giddy....}

The next day,
place it in your frame
and nail it in with brads.

Prime the chalkboard by rubbing a piece of chalk all over it
and erasing it with a chalkboard eraser.

Grab your chalk again and write something inspiring on it.

Place it on your side table.

LOVE what you see ~

and then take a lot of photos of it.

Realize that it is...
and just what that wall needed.

But it just may need a little distressing love,
don't ya think....?

{ Hugs }

(Oh, and one more thing!  If you want to make it much easier for anyone to reply to your comments, PLEASE either leave your email address with your comment OR include your email address in your blogger profile.  It saves everyone a whole lotta time and you'll get more replies back, too. So many of you have left such beautiful comments for me, but I have no way of sending you some love back!)

Linking with the parties located on the lower right of my sidebar.
Just click on the buttons and be whisked away to a world of inspiration!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Rooms in my heart

"Utterly engulfed
and wanting more,
with the vastness of Love.

Losing myself as the waves wash over me,
through me,
surrounding me;
Caught up in a hurricane of overwhelming peace,
I have let go,

and He has found me."

                           -James L. Rubart

I just finished reading this fictional book by a very inspiring Christian author.
It spoke to me like no other book has.
It forced me to take a good hard look at who I was
and what kind of heart I had.

What did I keep in the rooms in my heart?

It hurt to look
and I was not happy with myself.

What did God see when he looked at me?

When He looked into the rooms of my heart,
was He pleased with who I had become?

Was I living the life for which He intended me to?

Was there room enough in my heart for all that He was and had to offer me?


And in response, He humbled me this past week.
Brought me down to my knees in complete and utter weakness. 

Tears of pain, and frustration at myself ebbed and flowed like an angry sea in my soul.

I felt spent,

Crumpled, torn, and tossed in the wet sand
like a leaf ripped from a sea grape.

I was forced to look deep inside my heart
to search for the woman that He created me to be,
and to rediscover my purpose in life ~

to know God intimately and to enjoy Him forever.


"You will make known to me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
In Your right hand there are pleasures forever."
- Psalm 16:11

I needed to hear His voice of reassurance and comfort.
I needed to know that He had not abandoned me in disappointment.
I needed to be lifted up and strengthened in His love 
and by His grace.

I needed to know that I was not alone.


"I will go before you and make the rough places smooth;
I will shatter the doors of bronze and cut through their iron bars.
I will give you the treasures of darkness
And hidden wealth of secret places,
So that you may know that it is I,
The Lord, the God of Israel,
who calls you by your name."
-Isaiah 45:2-3


He called me by my name.

I heard Him clearly and lovingly.

He was with me as I worked outside today.
He was there in the hot sun on my shoulders
and the smell of the fresh cut grass.
I could see His reflection in Maizie's big brown eyes as she stood in the big bathtub
amidst the soapy bubbles.

He spoke to me of forgiveness
and love,
and pressed upon me the importance of living a simple life.

One that I work with my hands
and create things that glorify His name.

{source: The Robin & Sparrow, Etsy}

Picking, freezing, and canning vegetables from the garden
and fruits from the trees.
Hanging sweet smelling laundry out on the line.
Feeding the birds and squirrels that live in the old trees embracing this old farmhouse.

Living peacefully,
and reverently;
glorifying His name in everything that I do.

{source: It's Me}

God swept the rooms in my heart clean.
He forgave me.
He lifted me up.
He held me in his arms,
and He loved me
back to joy.


I rediscovered the incredible love that has always been there for me.
That I had pushed aside for my "wants" and "needs".
The love that I had been so trivially taking for granted.

"A key to open heart's desires,
yours and those beyond,
Cords are cut and chains are broken
when we live our calling strong."


 I am still walking with God ~
only a lot closer this time,
clinging to his strength,
and will practice listening to the Holy Spirit -
knowing that I will find Him in the quiet -

because I don't want to miss anything He has to say.

I wear His key of truth around my neck that will open the treasure in my heart.
His treasure.

I wait to hear His voice
in the peacefulness of my days
here at Heaven's Walk.

And I am listening to my heart,
for it knows the truth
because it is  
"where the temple is and where the King dwells."

{source: Sparrowsong Scripture Tags}

In a room
in my heart...

{humble hugs}

PS  My apologies for not replying to all of your sweet comments
this week. Know that I treasure each and every one...

{I am linking to the parties on the lower right of my sidebar.
I pray that you will be inspired.}