Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Goodwill Picture Makeover for Baby

The church I work at has a nursing moms room that needed a bit of help.  It actually was kind of like a dungeon lol.  On the wall facing the rockers is a large electrical box.  I decided that attaching a large picture to it would help tremendously.

This large picture was at Goodwill for 3.00.  I thought it was pretty as is but decided to add a Bible verse to it.

After choosing a simple script font, it was printed on copy paper and using tape, placed where I wanted the words to be.  

I started using my usual method of slipping a piece of graphite paper underneath the copy paper and tracing over the letters but soon realized the finish on the picture was grabbing the graphite and leaving smudges.  I switched to a lighter touch and it worked fine.  Any smudges left behind were easily removed with a slightly damp "magic eraser".

Typically I hand paint using black, acrylic paint and a fine brush.  The surface of the picture was pretty smooth so I was able to use a paint pen.  I bought a set of these on Amazon and I really like them for detail painting on smooth surfaces.

All of the little 'spots' you see are not paint, just the way this photographed.  It actually turned out really well!

My 3.00 picture was attached to the metal electrical box using Command velcro picture hangers.  A quick, inexpensive fix for an unsightly spot!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Betty Crocker - You "Crock" Me Up!

The other day I sat down with my grandma's old Betty Crocker cookbook.  Just for a few minutes.  Over an hour later, I couldn't put it down!  Published in 1957, this book is a real time capsule filled with things that made me laugh, literally out loud.  By the time I finished reading some of the snippets to my husband, I had no mascara left . . .

I don't think I've ever thought of appetizers this way . . . nor have I ever considered serving any of THESE, at least not to people I like.

The names alone - seriously?! And I'll bet if I served Herring-Appleteasers at MY next party, my guests would describe them as more than just "different".  Even those "decorative bowls" couldn't make me eat Sardine Spread.

Brains? Yeah, I guess I'm NEVER going to know how good they are because I'm NEVER going to try them.  But maybe the secret is in remembering to remove that membrane just before using.

But wait . . . there's MORE!  Who would consider serving just plain, old brains when you can serve BREADED brains?  I know they say that butter makes everything taste better but I have my doubts in this case.

Boy oh boy.  I bet Myrna Johnston's neighbors all hoped THIS would be the summer they were invited over for some of that spiced tongue served in her garden!

But before you serve up these tasty delights, you'll want to make sure you've planned well for your party:

So let's see:

1.  Dig out my light heart and happy frame of mind.
2.  Go out and find a wild strawberry from the nearby      meadow.
3. Figure out if my apartment, house or cottage includes help. (Does the dog cleaning up food I drop count?)
4.  Do I have to make any preliminary preparation because of activities away from home? Wait.  She was ALLOWED activities away from home??
5.  Find friends who "mix well".
6.  Recruit a surprise guest with some special talent or conversational skill or my party will be a bust.
7.  Plan for that SHORT period of relaxation or rest before my guests arrive.  Notice the word "short".  Because heaven knows with everything else I'm supposed to do for this dinner party, there won't be time for much more THAN a short period of relaxation.

Now thank goodness Betty thoughtfully includes these "special helps" because no one, and I mean NO ONE wants to shirk on their household chores.

Fasten your seatbelts . . . it's a wild ride!

I'm guessing my yoga pants and fuzzy slippers don't count?

Don't be a sloth and JUST clean and cook.  Use that brain of yours to plan all of the family outings and that garden you're going to have to work all summer.

FINALLY, something to lighten my load.

Because it's not enough that you planned dinner with a light and happy heart, foraged for a wild strawberry, realized that YOU are the only 'help' in your house/apartment/cottage, made sure at least ONE person you've invited has a special talent and took only a SHORT moment to relax.  Now you better make sure that you have humorous and interesting incidents to relate like the neighbor's cat being stuck in a tree??

Prevent unnecessary fatigue?? I'm thinking eliminate 90% of all the other stuff and you won't need to have a dust mop and a long-handled dust pan OR a self-wringing mop to prevent fatigue.

HOWEVER, on the off chance that the long-handled dust pan and self-wringing mop don't eliminate your fatigue, lay down on the floor.  Not a soft couch or comfy bed.  And of course, no more than 3-5 minutes you lazy bum.

And I DO mean JUST a MOMENT.  For just a moment you can do this.  However, I'm pretty sure that the arms, hands and head falling limp are an indication that you surely MUST not have been wearing comfy shoes or been thinking happy thoughts or remembered to buy that long-handled dust pan and self-wringing mop.  Shame on you.

Aside from all of the humor, I DID find some really great recipes.  I made this Lemon Cake Pudding last night and oh my . . . it is SO good!

I adapted it by subbing Monkfruit sweetener for the sugar and almond milk for the regular milk.  I've been following Weight Watchers for 8 months and have lost 48 pounds so I'm always looking for great recipes that I can 'adapt' to my new lifestyle.

The lemon cake pudding was delicious warm.  Tonight I had it cold from the refrigerator and I think it was even better!  With fat-free Redi Whip it was a one point dessert - Yum!  There are other variations in the cookbook using different fruits/flavors that I plan to try as well.

I enjoyed (and am still enjoying!) this peek into the past and will be sharing more of the recipes soon!  

Monday, October 28, 2019

My "Little Stinker" Skunk Dog Costume

 The doggy day care we go to hosted a costume contest last Saturday so I made Hudson a skunk costume lol!

He was very quiet and still during his 'fittings'.  I think because he wasn't quite sure what was going on!  I followed the instructions for a skunk costume HERE on YouTube.  I pretty much followed it except I used a black, baby onesie that I bought at Target for the shirt.  I also sewed everything because, I sew :) but I'm sure the hot glue method would be just fine.

He really would NOT move with this thing on!

He was like a statue!

I dusted off my embroidery attachment for my machine and made these little tags for his costume. (He's still not moving!) Then we got to daycare.  Which he LOVES.  And I think his desire to run and play got the better of him and he finally started moving in his costume.  After just a few minutes . . . 

 My Little Stinker 

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Dollar Store Cupboard Door Fall Wreaths

Earlier this year I decided I wanted to do a bit more decorating in the kitchen for holidays so I added Command hooks to the INSIDE of the cabinets  so I can hang wreaths on the doors.  

Since then . . . I've not made any new ones haha!  Click HERE for the tutorial on placing the hooks.

I decided to do something for fall and bought everything at the Dollar Tree.

The wreath forms came two to a package.  I simply wrapped wired ribbon around the forms and secured with hot glue leaving a long 'tail' for hanging.

I tied the 'tail' with some string to keep it neat and centered.

I love the felt leaves the dollar store had this year!  I added some felt leaves, faux flowers and some acorns I had collected.

The hardest part (and it's not REALLY hard) is making sure they all hang at the same level.  I just cut a slit in the ribbon and slid it over the upside down hook then looped it over to the front of the cupboard.

Easy, cheap holiday decor!

How are you 'fluffing your nest' for fall?

Friday, May 3, 2019

"The Love of God" Reclaimed Wood Art

It's one of my favorite hymns, "The Love of God" written by Frederick M. Lehman.

The love of God is greater far
  Than tongue or pen can ever tell.
It goes beyond the highest star
  And reaches to the lowest hell.
The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
  God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled
  And pardoned from his sin.

I love reading the history of how these rich hymns steeped in Scripture came to be.  It seems there is a story behind almost every one and this one is no exception.

 Lehman was a California businessman who lost everything through business reverses. He was forced to spend his working hours in manual labor, working in a Pasadena packing house packing oranges and lemons into wooden crates. Frederick was a Christian who did not allow his circumstances to define his faith in the Lord. One Sunday he heard a sermon on the love of God. He was so moved that he could hardly sleep. The next morning, the thrill of the previous evening had not left him. As he drove to the packing house, the makings of a song began to come together in his head, with God’s love as the theme. 

Throughout the day, as he packed oranges and lemons, the words continued to flow. There are varying accounts of how he chose to pen the words but regardless, he was so moved by the love of God even in the midst of these circumstances that he wrote the first two verses of the song and composed the music to go along with it.

The second verse says:

When hoary time shall pass away,
  And earthly thrones and kingdoms fall;
When men who here refuse to pray,
  On rocks and hills and mountains call;
God’s love, so sure, shall still endure,
  All measureless and strong;
Redeeming grace to Adam’s race—
  The saints’ and angels’ song.

However, Lehman was 'stuck' when it came to creating a third stanza. . . until he remembered a poem someone had given him before.  He found it was the perfect third verse to his song!  (This is my favorite verse and the one I used for this project!)

Could we with ink the ocean fill,
  And were the skies of parchment made;
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
  And every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above
  Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
  Though stretched from sky to sky.

Now for the even 'cooler' part . . . the origin of that poem.

It is not known if this rabbi was a follower of Messiah but either way, it's apparent that God moved him to write this poem knowing it would be the perfect fit to Frederick Lehman's hymn, "The Love of God".  It's said that workers went into his cell to paint the walls after his death and found these words.  Being moved by them, they copied them down before painting over them!  Praise God they did!

A friend gave me a  bunch of these old tongue-and-groove wood siding pieces.  They were perfect for this project. A white wash, and they were ready for the words.

Traced onto the wood using graphite paper underneath, they're ready for painting.

The painting isn't perfect but I sand lightly, which helps to hide 'flaws'.  However, some flaws need fixed like this "r" that went haywire. Easy . . . a little sanding removes the "oops" and then you're ready to paint.

I used some of my favorite stamps (love that 'water mark ring') and some random 'splotch' mark stamps to weather this a bit more.

I added a piece of 1/4" plywood on the back with nails to secure all of the pieces together. You could use any scrap wood for this project!  This is now hanging in my office at the church where I work.

O love of God, how rich and pure!
  How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endure—
    The saints’ and angels’ song.


Thursday, April 25, 2019

Cleaning Blinds - Quick and Easy!

Cleaning is not really my first activity choice on any given day.  And cleaning blinds . . . uggggg.  Hate it.  And as you can see . . . it's not something I do as often as I should.  Here you can see where I wiped away a spot of grime . . . yeah, they were bad.

I was looking on Pinterest (when I SHOULD have been doing something more productive) and saw this post from The Intentional Mom on cleaning blinds.  I decided to give it a try.  I tweaked a little bit by using Dawn in my water.  SO, all you need is a few old socks, some Dawn and a sink or bucket of hot, soapy water.

Wet your cleaning sock puppet in the water, add a tiny drop of Dawn and squeeze to distribute (You don't want your sock TOO soapy . . . just a tiny bit to help remove grime.)

You can clean the top and bottom all at once.  I started with the blinds straight open to easily clean both sides.  Depending on how dirty the blinds are, you can do a section, go rinse your sock puppet and begin fresh.

EEEEEW!  This was after about 1/3 of a blind!  Just take the sock, rinse, add some Dawn to clean it and start again with the same sock.

Once you've cleaned the whole blind, close it in one directions and go over it with a clean, rinsed sock to pick up any stray gunk.  Close it in the other direction and do the same.

And if you have a cute puppy, of course let them have fun by trying to grab the socks while you're working.  

Does anyone do "spring cleaning" any more??  My mom did (and fall cleaning).  I remember her taking down all of the drapes, curtains, blinds and washing them all or replacing them with seasonal window treatments.  She washed the WALLS, BASEBOARDS, and scrubbed everything top to bottom.  She also ironed sheets.  I did not inherit this gene.

What's your favorite cleaning 'tip'?