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Archive for the ‘home’ Category

Open Studio

Here in the Boise area the “real” (those who display or sell) artists will host “open studio” nights where the public is invited to come in and check out the space.
My studio is in the garage. Crammed between the furnace and my husband’s old jeep. It may sound a bit ghetto or trashy but it works perfectly for me.

I can start projects and leave them out and not worry that I am cluttering the dinning table or my computer keyboard- both things I have done in the past. And I can leave it a mess. No one has to see my piles!

Another benefit is that my kids can be out with me and paint. Ever since they were babies they’ve been with me doing whatever I was doing. A neighbor recently stopped by while I was painting with my girl in the studio. She commented “you’re one of those moms who does crafty stuff with their kids”. She hates to do crafty stuff and doing messy things with her kids is torture.
I know she didn’t mean it rude. Not everyone likes messy crafts or paint under their nails or their kids being messy.

Me? I’m a mom who needs time to be creative and I’ve recognized that if my kids can paint with me, then I can paint too. And, I love seeing my kids be creative, seeing them make something and enjoy the process.

When the weather is nice I like to have the garage door open while I’m painting. We have a lot of birds in the yard. And this signals to the neighbor kids that the studio is “open”. And when they see me with paint they are drawn to it, like a moth to a flame.
So I started setting up a card table in the garage and turning them loose with markers, watercolors, and letting them create away.

And this is view I get from my work space

Having a group of kids painting and creating and enjoying the process, makes me pretty happy. Maybe it’s because I’m a science teacher and used to supervising students with messy (or disgusting) labs. Or maybe it’s because watching them makes me feel like I’m 8 years old, with the confidence of a kid.
So if you’re in the area, and the garage door is open, stop by. I’m sure there will be much art making this summer.

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crafting a special nest

With my love of birds and old things, I find that I collect a lot of little bits that I “save” for the special project. And then I am fearful to cut into that perfect piece of paper or fabric for fear of ruining it. Here is a sweet little piece I created to sit on my great granny’s buffet using those special things.

Using the white compote that has never been used, a bird nest I had to cut down to size, fake bird eggs that I added more ink to, a left over strip of burlap, old clock face I had been saving, and an old key. The bird is the only one left of a salt and pepper shaker set of my great granny’s.

It all makes me very happy, and I don’t feel bad that I used up something I’d been hoarding. And every time I see this, I smile.

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washing dishes by hand, enjoying the feel of the warm soapy water, letting my mind just drift with a simple task

looking out my window enjoying the quiet street

seeing birch leaves fall slowly one at a time

hearing the click of little girl dress up shoes, motor sounds from a little boy

enjoying the giggles of my two little people making a fort with the couch cushions

feeling pretty calm and content, forgetting the long to do lists, ignoring the demands of life for just a bit

reminding myself that things usually work out even if I don’t worry over them

Instead of wishing you a great day I hope you can take a little quiet moment to settle yourself.

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I’ve finally finished all of the downstairs painting. Now comes the hard part: what to display/hang and what to put away? I collect all sorts of things-some really neat and some not so much. My problem is that I have this need to display every cool thing I have so I end up with lots of clutter. Or I hold on to things forever waiting for just the right spot to put something! Fortunately, I have a hard time putting nail holes in my freshly painted walls and this makes me really think about where I want things. Here’s what I have so far:

Dinning Room

-vinyl wall art from Stampin Up last year
-shadow box shelves bought 4 years ago, finally hung up. Just love my little white pitchers here!
-a photo our realtor took of our house and gave us for Christmas a few years ago
-name sign from a craft show a couple of years ago
-painting by a John Rogers (no info) that I found at a thrift shop years ago. Bought because I love this style of watercolor paintings and this era.

Living Room

-Love these colors, they really go well with all the old woods we have.
-oil painting by my mom
-some things on the mantel (work in progress)
-cowboy clock, given to me by my grandma in highschool


-a banner I made out of assorted new and very old papers

close up

-I used the thankful wheel with a permanent ink (heat set) on twill tape
-Die cut leaves out of paper, bingo cards, sheet music

All of these make me very happy. Feels like I’ve done a little blessing on my home. What have you done lately to spruce up your space?

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I take a lot of pictures of my kids, my family, stuff around me, and all over our house. I scrap a lot of them but I’m not real great about putting new pictures up for display on a regular basis. I don’t want to frame all of my favorite photos because my walls would be covered, instead I like to put up my recent favorites and rotate those often. I’ve been looking for cute ways to display photos that are also easy to switch out. What I have created is the clipboard photo holder. Disclaimer: this is not a new idea, it’s been done by lots of people but this is my twist to it. This clipboard could sit on a small stand (like for a plate or picture) or you could add magnets to the back and have it for your fridge or cubicle. I kept the design simple to keep it from overwhelming my photos. Of course now that I look at it I think it could use a bit of ribbon and lace to the top 🙂 but that’s just me.

For this project I used the damask stamp from the Friends 24-7 stamp set, black Stayz-on ink, clear window sheets, and an Onboard Clipboard I painted with ivory craft paint. Took a bit of time and patience so I didn’t smear the damask stamp. But it’s done and I really like how it turned out. I can see this being one of my Christmas gifts this year. Wouldn’t my parents, grandparents, and girlfriends love to have something like this?

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We’ve lived in our home for nearly four years. It was a spec home–built and painted just waiting for us to move in. Inside the trim is all glossy white and the walls are all what I’ve named “Builder Beige” or “Tahoe Tan” (Tahoe was our builder and this is a color they use in many of their homes.) I’m sure this color has an “official” name but I like builder beige and now everyone uses that color. We had just moved out of our 900 sq ft brick duplex, built in the 60’s with hardwood floors. It had a really simple/classic look, nothing too funky. We owned both sides and rented the other side out, which meant we did all of the maintenance on the place and we had a ton of painting and work to do when we moved out of our side so we could get it rented out. Long story short: we were really happy to move into a nice, new, completed home. Not having to paint or do a bunch of work on a house was really nice. We thought about color for a while but could never decide. Then we had twins and had two toddlers ramming their stuff into the walls and corners and we thought “let’s wait a while to paint”. So now the kids are 3.5, they’re big toys are outside and in their rooms and my husband thought this summer would be a good time to paint. But I wasn’t ready to until I went to buy stain for our fence and decided to get some paint. Well, the first two colors I got where not the right ones. So a friend brought over a paint deck and helped me find the right colors.
So here’s the kitchen before (the red was started two years ago but I couldn’t decide how far to go with it!)

And now, after

I also carried the red around the other side of the kitchen to finish it off.

In our house, the kitchen is at the front of the house overlooking the street (which I love) and instead of separate formal dinning room, we have a dinning area right with the kitchen.
So here’s before (with my 1st color attempts)

And after

This yellow is so warm and comforting. I love how it makes my trim work stand out better. And I love how my great grandmother’s buffet looks so great against that yellow. The large pitcher and basin are also from great grandma and for a long time sat above my kitchen cabinets because I didn’t have a safe spot for it where it wouldn’t get bumped. The small cream pitchers are from both my hubby and I’s grandmas.

We are all so happy with our new paint colors. It makes it feel like a brand new room!

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