I finally changed the blackboard above my mantle this week. And yes, that is the mantle my husband made! All year it has displayed my pregnancy announcement consisting of birdies on a tree branch and a little nest in a birdcage but recently I realized it needed some updating. I’m still working on finishing the frame in the garage, projects have been known to be started and then picked up years later by myself, but it’s been one of those projects that have been tossed to the wayside. I love how rustic the wood, linen, and chalkboard makes the living room feel.
I decided since it’s fall, I would use one of my favorite bible verses for thankfulness:
“I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart.” Psalm 9:1
I also found some awesome mini lights from the dollar store in orange and a purplish black that make my fireplace look warm with glowing coals. I actually never turn them off- they are literally glowing all soft and warm for me all day and all night.
It’s more or less one of those ‘for-looks’ gas fireplaces. The gasman who came to inspect it when we moved in told me it’s not efficient for heating and cost a lot of money to run, in gas. We have never turned it on, believe it or not.
Still, I love the effect the orange glow has with my cheater coals. You can get them around Halloween at the DollarTree. There are so many things you can do to improve your home and make it cozy, even if you dont have the bonified item or funds.
So, I have been working all year on my window treatments. My mom has connections with a coffee roaster, so she gets burlap coffee sacks for free. I really love them, but the stiffness in them makes it a tad tedious to work with.
I had some great ideas for curtains and so I hung up a few mangled hunks of sacks tied with some ribbons of burlap, got bored, and literally left it there.
For a year.
Okay, so it’s time to fix the mess that was my dining room window treatments and I saw a wonderful example of a burlap window valance here.. I have since done the left side also and it looks lovely!
All I did was spray a little bit of ironing starch on the bags and iron so that they layed very flat and stiff.
Then I measured how wide I wanted it to be, traced out the shape I wanted on the bottom of the sack folded in half and cut. I really didn’t like the amount of light let in with only one side of the burlap sack because of how wide the mesh was of the fabric. I highly suggest using the whole sack instead of only one side. I then sewed the top to allow room for the rod to go through.
I searched for a cute monogrammed letter ‘M’ online, blew it up as large as I wanted and printed it out. Then I put the paper with the monogram underneath the top layer and, with my white acrylic paint, traced over the letter with a paintbrush.
My coffee sacks vary in thread space width, but these sacks had very large gaps inbetween each thread. It did take a few going overs with the paint but they look beautiful! I may update this later and add the lace to the bottom, but for now it isn’t too ‘girly’ for my 4 boys and husband (or my tomb-boy daughter) so I worry they may complain if I do!
Feeling blessed today! I’ve had very little energy lately but I managed to get a lot of looming housework out of the way! Most people don’t understand what ‘looming housework’ of a family of 10 is like. It’s a monster. Oh- and all those missing sewing machine parts? Justus dumped them inside my art tote!!! Haha how convenient!!! This means I can finish sewing the curtains, kid-size canvas strong man, blankets and random clothing I started! I’m super eager to make some little man stuff!
Today is Emmalia’s Birthday, and I’m making her a cake. Around this house, Birthday cakes are a bit of a ‘You-think-it-up-and-ill-make-it’ deal. I would rather spend $50 on the ingredients and decorations to make a cake than to have one specially made for us! However, luckily it usually isnt anywhere near that price since I make a fondant icing out of Marshmellow Puff and Powdered sugar. Coloring is anywhere from $1.50 and up at the local craft store and the Gum paste varies also.
Since I am very pregnant (Due in just over a month, woohoo!) and this is very hard on my back, I havent been documenting every step, but I’ll show you the finished masterpiece! Emma wanted an Angelina Ballerina cake and so we searched online and she really liked this one.
The body was made of gum paste and food coloring and I started out making the head.
Unfortunately, I ran out of powdered sugar and the fondant started to melt on the cake, haha! But alas- My Emmalia didnt care because her ballerina was ‘perfect’ for her.
We had to pick up some lumber from Lowes for some of my projects the other day and I realized I was all out of spray primer. I loved this stuff. It was a tall can of Zinsser primer and it was smooth and coated so evenly! I had one drawer facia left as well as some inside bits of the dresser I was renovating to do. I must have walked up and down the aisles 20 times searching front and back but it was nowhere to be found. They were all there the other day!
An associate came up and asked if I needed something and I explained to her this primer would complete my job but I couldn’t find them.
“Hmm, that must be a popular primer because I sold about 3 of them just the other day…” she replied to me but inventories only showed 1 in stock. That could be anywhere in the whole Lowes Universe! I explained that there were a few blogs online that recommended using it and it’s understandable it would be popular. All at once her face lit up. “Oh.. you said blog… wait a minute. About 3 weeks ago I read something on a blog and put this aside for a project and forgot about it. Follow me!” she said and we hurried over to her counter where- there, in shiny glory- was my Zinsser primer.
“It was a Goduance.” I explained. “God was just having you put that aside for me knowing I had this project to finish in the future.” *wink*