Saturday, March 31, 2012

Paisley's Shower

Baby Girl's Sister-In-Law 
Hosted a Beautiful Shower
for Paisley today.

She did such a wonderful job,
I thought you might enjoy 
the pictures.

Paisley is already very blessed
Thanks, Aunt R.


Friday, March 30, 2012

The Importance of Easter

I am a Christian, which means I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I have chosen to be one because I have read the Bible and believe it is true.  I have also studied other beliefs systems of the world, including not believing in a God at all, but in my life I cannot deny that He is real.

For me and other followers of Jesus, Easter really is not about bunnies and colorful baskets filled with pretty eggs. While the bright colors and designs are beautiful reminders of spring - they very poorly represent what we are remembering at Easter.

This is my Baby Girl surrounded by babies last Easter.  
Even though she attends a different church - she helped me in the nursery 
because we were shorthanded.  The little ones loved her 
and all wanted to sit in her lap.  It was sooo cute!

I think I'm not alone in wondering why Christmas is celebrated for an entire season, and yet Easter, which is undoubtedly our most important holiday, is given a weekend or maybe a week at best.

To help my family and me focus and remember more of the events that are Easter, I have been searching for meaningful ways to celebrate this event for which our entire faith is built upon.  

But it's very hard!  

It's fun to celebrate Christmas with the precious baby, and the beautiful young mother who is protected by the noble Joseph.  It is magical to think of angels filling the sky with singing, and elaborately adorned wisemen bringing priceless gifts to a baby king.

But.......Easter is not so pretty.  It is about betrayal, denial, and horrific sacrifice.  It's scenes are those of beatings and cruelty beyond what my human mind can absorb.  It is a gruesome story, and yet it is the most beautiful story ever told, because the real story of Easter is that of Forgiveness and Redemption.

I took this picture of a painting at Guayasamin's museum in Quito, Ecuador.  He was a famous artist of Quito.  His work was inspired by Picasso.  

If you don't know what Easter is really about, here is a video to give you a glimpse

Or perhaps you would like to read it directly from the Bible. If so, click here

We are going to celebrate Easter in some new ways this year. I've been deeply pondering different parts of the story and have thought of a few things we can do to help us remember:

Celebrate a Passover Meal followed by songs of Hosanna

Actually go to a garden to pray to prepare our hearts for Easter

Hide and then hunt for 30 silver coins (quarters) for each child - and some Hershey's kisses.  We will give the coins to our special Easter offering at church, or allow the kids to give to a favorite cause.  The kisses we will give to each other.  We want to remember what Judas did, but use it for good.

I'm going to arrange with some family and friends - ahead of time - to call or stop by our house to ask about Jesus.  On that particular day, we will deny that we know who Jesus is. This will help us to think about how hard and scary it must have been for Jesus' followers after He was arrested.

On Friday, we will each write down on small pieces of paper some things that we are doing that are not pleasing to God. We will then each take a real red rose and tuck those pieces of paper between the petals.  We'll talk about how perfect Jesus is - like the rose - then we'll touch the thorns and imagine them being placed on his head.  Finally, we will nail our roses to a cross of wood.  After several hours, when the roses have wilted, we will place our roses beneath a large flower pot and place a heavy rock on top of it.

On Sunday morning, a rose bush will be standing in the flower pot.  At the base of the bush will be envelopes addressed to each member of our family.  Inside will be the little pieces of paper that we wrote on, now with the words  

Paid In Full 

marked across them.  We will then spend the day rejoicing!!!

To complete our celebration, we will plant the rose bush in our garden to remember the sacrifice that Jesus made for us.

If your family has meaningful traditions to celebrate Easter, I sincerely hope you will share!  A few people have asked me for ideas and these are some that came to my mind. 

Thanks for stopping by,


Also, if you would like to know more about Jesus and how He can change your life, please write to me at  I will be happy to share more about Him and what He has done for me - with you.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Your heART's Design

You know those places where you go 
to paint your own pottery?

A few years ago, all four of my kids spent hours at a pottery place making this nativity set for me.  That's pretty remarkable considering 3 of the 4 were boys - including a son in law.  I absolutely LOVE it!

I know they've been around for a little while, but are they not the most fun places ever?  Sitting around with your best girlies making crafts all night - well, that definitely is my idea of an evening well spent.

Usually when we want to do something like this in these parts, we have to travel about 40 minutes to Oklahoma City. However, much to my delight, we now have a place right here in our own little town.

It is called

Your HeART'S Design

check out their web-site here

I went to a friend's surprise birthday party there last week and had a great time.  They were so helpful and accommodating with all of our party stuff.  It was relaxing, fun, cute, spacious - just a great environment for a party.

There is only one problem 

What on earth do you make when you go to one of these places?

No, I'm seriously posing this question to you!

It is sooo hard to come up with an idea on the spot.  The next time I go, I want to have some ideas in mind - and since everyone else was struggling too - I'd love to get some ideas from YOU!

I ended up making 4 coasters, after all I did need some.  How did they turn out?  Well, the red ones are nice, but my leopard prints look like some kind of creature footprints.  In my defense - I should have chosen to only paint 2 coasters in one evening, because as I ran out of time, I had to paint the leopard spots rather quickly.  I also should have grabbed something leopardish to look at while I painted.  Oh well, I like them anyway.  They kind of remind me of the Flintstones and they'll still do the job.  

To my local friends, I hope you'll check out Your heART's Design and perhaps join them on their next ladies night.  Or better yet, have a party there - you don't have to clean your house or anything.

Thanks for stopping by,


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Designer Easter Grass

I think Easter grass is just plain fun.  All the bright colors are so festive this time of year.

But what if you would like something Easter grass-ish, but in colors that are not so bold?

Or what if you might like a little pattern added to the grass?

Well.......I thought it would be fun to make some toile Easter grass.

First, I found a piece of toile scrapbook paper, and then made about 12 black and white copies of it with my copier.  I actually copied both sides of the paper so it was completely patterned.

Next, I ran it through an old shredder that only shreds vertically.  You could just cut strips if your shredder does not do this.

This is how it turned out.

I think this would be a great way to make gift basket filler. Can you picture colors like aqua, green, or a soft pink in a baby basket?  Or maybe some red paper, blue paper, and green paper with black dots copied on it for filler in a kids gift?  What about typing a couple's name over and over on white paper for a wedding basket filler?  I can see I'm going to have some fun with this!

Thanks for stopping by,


Monday, March 26, 2012

Nursery Reveal For My Little Fleur

I've been a little distracted from other projects lately.......

Because I've been working on something
that has captured my heart.

The nursery for my first grandbaby!

We are almost finished.  
Want to see?

Yes, my little fleur is to be called
Paisley Ann.

If you should look at my Baby Girl's wedding pics 
(see some here), 
you will see she loves hot pink and brown.
This hasn't changed much in 
2  1/2 years.

I sewed the bumper pads, 
including the piping and the ruffle on top,

and this bedskirt to match the curtains.

Baby Girl made all of these
beautiful basket liners, as well as pillows, 
ties and picture mattes.

We had a wonderful time being 
mom and daughter working together 
to welcome our next generation.

Paisley girl, we are greatly
anticipating your arrival!

Thanks for sharing this 
very special time
with us.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sewing Unlined/Lined Curtain Panels - Part 4

If you've decided to sew your own curtain panels, it is my opinion that you should go ahead and add a lining to them.  It is a little more costly, both in time and lining fabric, but there are some worthwhile benefits from doing this.  (To see Part 1 of this Tutorial, go here.) 

Linings added to curtains 

-help block the sun from your decorator fabric, keeping it from fading and rotting.  At about $3 a yard, this is an effective way to protect your costly fabric.

-make your cover fabric look richer.  Even a cheap fabric will hang much nicer with a lining.

-block light to make a room better for sleeping or watching TV.

-help insulate your home from heat and cold, saving you energy dollars.

Any fabric can be used for a lining, even sheets.  Just be sure to choose a fabric that needs to be washed/cleaned by the same method as your decorator fabric.

Should you choose to purchase actual lining fabric from the fabric store, you actually have some nice options to choose from.  Light and middle-weight basic linings will work for most of your projects, but you can also purchase linings that add thermal warmth, or linings that are made to block out all light.

To cut the lining for your curtains, look at your measurements for the finished size of each panel.

Length - to cut the length of the lining, take the finished length of the panel (including the header and rod pocket) and add 5 inches to that measurement.

Width - cut the lining the exact width of the finished panel.  If you need to piece sections together, the process is the same as with your decorator fabric, with one exception:  if the lining fabric is the same width as the decorator fabric - cut your wide section about 2 inches narrower, and the narrow section 2 inches wider.  The width works out the same, but this keeps the lining seam and the fabric seam from lining up at the same place.  The problem you are trying to avoid is ending up with that is too much bulk in the header.  This helps to offset the seams when you put the lining and the cover fabric together.

To assemble your Lined Panels:

Press your bottom curtain panel hem and then stitch into place.  Refer to Part 3 here for more information on how to do this.

Now, press the side hems and then the top header and rod pocket - BUT DO NOT STITCH INTO PLACE.

Press a 3" double hem into the bottom of your lining.  Stitch the hem in place.  Again, see Part 3 for an illustration.

If your panel and/or lining appear to be wrinkled at this point, go ahead and press them again.

Lay your panel face down on a large surface - like the floor - and smooth it as best you can.  Next, place the lining face up on top of the panel.  Pin the bottom of the lining (where you just hemmed it) 1" above the bottom of the hemmed curtain panel.  You will need to lift the pressed side hems to allow the lining to tuck in.  After you have pinned completely across the bottom, smooth the lining from the bottom to the top.  Continue to lift the sides, tucking the lining under the pressed fold.

I forgot to take a picture at this point.  This is after I 
finished stitching, so it is all wrinkly again.
You get the idea, though.

When you reach the top, lift the pressed header and smooth the lining under it as well.

If you find the lining is too wide or long, trim it right where it meets the outermost fold of the side hems or the top fold of the header.

Pin the lining to the panel all along the side hems and along the top.  Since you will be stitching the side hems in place first, be prepared to remove some of the pins at the top.  Once the side hems are stitched into place, finish the header and rod pocket as described in Part 3.

That's all there is to attaching a lining.  Of course, you may want sheer panels, or may not care about the benefits from adding a lining - but at least you know how doable it is if you ever want to add one.

I hope you'll let me know when you get your curtain panels made - and please send some pics!  I've tried to give you a fair picture of what is involved, but I've also tried to break it down into a series of very manageable steps.  

Thanks for stopping by,


Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Hunger Games

My son asked me to take him to the midnight showing of
 The Hunger Games tonight.

I'm doing my best to stay awake, 
but things are not looking good.

In fact, they're looking a little fuzzy from here.

I'm getting too old for this stuff!

Thanks for stopping by,


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Spring Garden Flowers For Prom

My statue couple's names are Larry and Donna.

When the first hint of spring is in the air, I always rush out to my front flower bed to see if the peonies are awakening from their winter sleep.  As I brush back the dried leaves that have accumulated in the garden, I smile and breathe in a deep breath of satisfaction, for they never disappoint.  How excited I am to see their ruddy, tender leaves already standing 3-4 inches tall. Only 4 more weeks and my garden will be filled with their beauty and fragrance.  

Oh, how I love Spring!

Of course, with spring comes Prom.  Since there are ten years between my daughter and the next child, which is my son, we have had a long break from proms.  However, my son is a sophomore now - which means we are back in the game.

As my son attends a very small, private school, he was allowed to attend prom as early as his Freshman year.  Being the Loverboy that he is, he decided he really wanted to go. Now, I could complain here about how I thought this was supposed to be easier with boys.......and it really wasn't.......and blah, blah, blah.......

But I won't

Because my son usually looks like this

But for one night, he looked like this

Oh, so handsome!

Anyway, the point of this post is to say that as we looked for flowers to go with his date's dress, we were surprised that there was not a better selection to choose from.  I mean for $30, I couldn't believe that's all you could get.

We decided in the end that I would practice and try to put together a corsage.  So, I bought some ribbon from Hobby Lobby that was on sale for 50% off, a wrist corsage form and some carnations from Sam's Club, and a calla lily plant from Lowes.  Everything else was cut from plants and greenery in my garden. 

It took a little bit of work and research, but this is how it turned out.

It was so much fun making a corsage that complimented her dress.  I must admit, however, that I had nightmares the entire evening imagining flowers flying off of her corsage as she danced.  I was so relieved when we picked them up after the dance and everything was still in place.  Whew!

The cost for the corsage was about $10, but that is not why we chose to make one.  We wanted something with a little more style than just a few carnations and a rose, and I guess making our own was one way to get that.

I'm not sure if he is going to prom this year or not, but if so - I can't wait to learn the colors of his date's dress and start thinking about flower combinations.  If we should do this again, please don't tell her her corsage is homemade!

Thanks for stopping by,


PS, here are some tips I learned while making the corsage:

You do not need many flowers at all, and with the exception of just a few focal flowers - small flowers are better.

Take the time to wire and floral wrap all of the flowers to keep them looking nice when they start to droop.  When using flowers from your garden, cut some samples a few days ahead and leave them sitting on the counter to see how quickly they wilt.  Some flowers will not hold up for even a few hours out of water.

Keep the proportion in mind.  This corsage may have been a little big for her tiny arm.

Make sure the wrist form fits.  Although I adjusted it, I should have taken it in a little more.  I've since seen the adjustable forms that allow the girl to fit the corsage to her own wrist.  That's a much better idea than just an elastic strap.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Great Tips - Best Soap Dish

With all the fancy, amazingly scented body washes and facial cleansers on the market - I find I'm still a soap girl.  I think I just really like my skin to feel the clean that I get with soap.

The problem is.......

Soap is Messy

and I don't like that!

I've tried all kinds of soap dishes, soap boxes, putting marbles in the dish, storing the soap upright etc., etc. The soap still leaves a lot of gunk in the bottom of the dish and makes a terrible, ugly mess.

I finally found something that works really great, and can be used with any soap dish or container.  A body wash pouf. Just keep your soap on top of a pouf and there will be almost no mess.  Any soap that drips down from the bar into the pouf dries before it reaches the dish.  It looks nice and clean and only requires rinsing out the pouf every few weeks or so.

Yay!  I can stay a soap girl - 
although some of those sparkly body washes 
are awfully irresistible.

Thanks for stopping by,


Saturday, March 17, 2012

Sewing Unlined/Lined Curtain Panels - Part 3

The real work in making curtain panels is in cutting the fabric and ironing all the hems in place.  Once that prep work is finished, the actual sewing is pretty easy.

This is my prego Baby Girl working on her baby's nursery.
Isn't she so cute?

In Part 1 of this tutorial - found here - I shared some things to consider before you jump into making curtain panels.

In Part 2A - found here - I showed you how to arrive at the cutting LENGTH for your panels

And in Part 2B - found here - we discussed determining the cutting WIDTH for your panels and how to arrive at the total amount of fabric you will need for this project.

In Part 3, I'll show you how to iron your hems in place and finish your unlined curtain panels.  If you would like to line your panels, Part 4 will show you how to add a lining.  Since the order is a little different, it would be best to read Part 4 to understand how to assemble the lined panels, and then come back to Part 3 for the hemming tips.  

By now, you should have all of your fabric cutting finished. Here are the steps to complete your panels:

Step 1 - If you have not already done so, sew your fabric sections together to get the width you need.*  It is best to sew your seams from the bottom to the top.  If your fabric should move slightly when you are stitching, it will be less noticeable in the top of the panel where the gathers are. Press your seams.

 *Lavender Tub tip - when my panels are quite wide making them hard to work with, I will delay Step 1 and go ahead with the pressing only in Steps 2 and 3, coming back to Step 1. Then I will do the stitching part of Steps 2 and 3.  (Basically, press your hems in place and then sew your sections together).

Step 2 - Iron the bottom hem in place.  If you wish to add drapery weights, stitch one at each seam where you pieced sections of fabric together, and one on each lower corner about 1/2 " from the hemline.  Make sure you do not position them right where you need to stitch your side hems.  Stitch your hem in place by machine or by hand, whichever you prefer.

Lavender Tub tip - rather than using a seam gauge to press my hems in place - I came up with a method that goes much faster, saves my fingers from the iron, and seems to be more accurate.  

Instead, using a pencil (choose a colored pencil that closely matches the color of the fabric if there is any chance it might show through) mark a line on the fabric that runs parallel with the cut edge you are hemming.  If you will be making a double hem, take the finished hem width amount and multiply by 4.  Mark a line on your fabric that # of inches from the cut edge.  IE:  if you will be making a 1" hem, draw a line 4" from the cut edge.  Likewise, if you want a 4" double hem, draw a line 16" from the edge.  

Now fold your cut edge up to that line and press in place.  

Open up this fold and now line up the cut edge with the crease you just made.  Press without pressing out the first crease.  You should now have a nice double hem ready to be sewn in place.

Step 3 - Press your side hems and stitch.  The above mentioned tip works great here too.

Step 4 - Press the top of your panel into place remembering the measurements you decided upon for the header, the rod pocket, and the hem.  Stitch the bottom of the rod pocket first, and then measure up from that seam to mark a stitching line for the top of the rod pocket.  Stitch along the marked line to complete the rod pocket.


While they can be a lot of work, making your own curtain panels from your favorite fabric is very satisfying.

I'm so proud of you!

Thanks for stopping by,


Friday, March 16, 2012

$ Tree Cloche-Hat Lampshade

Are you in the mood for a fun $ Tree craft?

When I purchased a few of these trash baskets from the $ Tree, I thought they were plastic.  I've already been using them in several applications in the house and garden, but to realize they are actually made of wire.......

-well this changes everything!

As creative processes often go, I picked up a basket and started experimenting with its shape.  Before long, by applying even pressure around the different circumferences of the basket - I was able to shape a resemblance of a 1920's Cloche Hat.

How excited I was to try it on my naked little lamp 
who had been waiting for a proper shade.

I spray painted the new little shade with Krylon's Celery, ran some $ Tree ribbon through my ruffler, and hot glued everything in place.  I also added a flower from my stash - which happened to be from the $ Tree also.

Since the basket is thinner than an actual shade, I added some washers at the top - which I covered with more ruffled ribbon - then screwed the finial in place.

My little lamp is now dressed so lovely!  
Wouldn't this be adorable painted hot pink 
with a black and white polka-dot ribbon for a girl's room?

Thanks for stopping by,


Lavender Tub Tip:  When hot gluing the ribbon onto the wire basket, work in 2" sections.  The glue cools very quickly on the wire and then doesn't adhere well.

Parties I Will Be Linking To: