Wednesday, May 17, 2017

What could have been...

Last night could have gone one of two ways.  It could have ended real bad.

Here's my story.

First of all, I will be honest.  Like maybe too honest.  I am not handling Dan's new job very well.  I hate hate hate that he is gone and away from me and our family.  I am not transitioning well at all.  I am having to depend on people to drive my kids around.  I am having to ask for help.  My mom and friends are having to bring me meals.  I cry on a daily basis.  I am trying my best to hold it together...some days are better than others.  We are trying to figure it out.  We are relying on God to lead us.

Last week was rough on me.  I had a pretty big fight with God on my 3rd trip to Brookfield...in one day.  I thought I had cleared some things up with him.  Then on my way home I got a speeding ticket.  Then the next day, Sadie's glasses that she just got less than one week ago got broken at school.  I will admit I wasn't at my "best" last week.  This week had to be better....it just had to be.

Fast forward to yesterday.

I am in the process of decluttering our house.  We have way too much stuff and my brain just can't handle it anymore.  I decided to work on our dining room and craft room last week and am still in the middle of gathering rummage and organizing.  Last night I was cleaning my dining room and getting some things organized on a dresser I had just moved in there.  I decided that lighting a candle would give me some "mood" lighting and who doesn't like a good Bath and Body candle, right?!?!  I finished arranging the dresser and placed a  twine wrapped "W" near the candle.  I knew it probably wasn't the best idea, but it wasn't going to stay there....I was going to come back to it.

The night went on.  I made dinner for the kids.  I ran kids here and there.  I switched laundry around and put the kids to bed.  Normally at night after the younger kids go to bed I sometimes go for a run while the older ones stay up and do their homework.  Last night I did something that I have NEVER done.  I decided to stay home, sit on the front porch, and read a book.  Getting me to sit still is basically impossible.  I can't tell you the last time I finished reading a book.  I had started a book when we were in Alabama and I have been slowly reading it page by page while waiting for kids to get done with practices.  I was really close to finishing it and my mind needed to escape reality for a little bit.  I made my way to the porch and sat and read.  The week before I decided I would read a few pages each night in bed to take my mind off of Dan not being home....it helped my head rest.  I can tell you that the fact that I went outside to read was not anywhere near my "normal."

I read until it was dark and I couldn't see the pages anymore.  I kept checking my fitness watch and was feeling so bad that I didn't go for a run and meet my fitness goal.  I only had 2 chapters left when it got too dark out so I headed in and sat in a chair in my kitchen.  Again....I have NEVER sat there and read.  I normally would have made my way right upstairs to my bed.  I sat and read.  I finished the book and felt good about actually finishing it!

We have a button in our house that if you press it all the lights in the entire house shut off.  Normally, I would press that button after I get upstairs and into my room.  Last night, after finishing the book, I hit the button downstairs and made my way upstairs in the dark.  Again....so strange for me.

As I made my way to the stairs, out of the corner of my eye, I saw something flicker.  THE CANDLE.  I had forgotten to blow out the candle.  I made my way into the dark to see that the twine wrapped "W" had fallen on the candle and it had just started to burn.  The felt flowers that were on the "W" had already been burned off and the twine had just caught fire.  I picked it up, blew the fire out and watched the smoke instantly go everywhere.  I had to turn the fans on in the kitchen so the alarms wouldn't go off.

I sat there in disbelief.  Each and every moment of my night was way out of my "normal" routine.  It felt really weird but also really good.  I had to take a moment to realize what had happened.

I was able to slow down.  I wasn't so focused on what had to be done or what I should be doing, but I was taking time to just "be."  Every second last night I totally believe was orchestrated by God.  He protected me and my family from something that could have been much worse.

What if I would have left and gone for a run?

What if I would have read my book in the bed like every other night?

What if I would have turned the lights off when I got upstairs and missed the flickering candle?

It was just what I need from God as a reminder that He is in every moment in my life.  Even the days and hours when I feel like I can't press on another minute without Dan.  The days when I feel like I am a bad mom and I am drowning in work and life and laundry and chasing....God is in it with me and He cares more about me than I could ever imagine.  He is enough for me and is ready to help carry me when I don't feel like I can make it another step.  He loves me that much.

I won't be lighting anymore candles when Dan is gone, I can tell you that.

What could have been, wasn't.  I am resting in that tonight.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Fox 6 Real Milwaukee Mother's Day DIY bouquet ideas (that won't break the bank!)


A couple weeks ago, the producer of Real Milwaukee contacted me with some super adorable DIY Mother's Day bouquets.  One look and I was instantly excited about how I could make these my own.  I have said this before, I can pretty much copy any idea and tweak it to my style.  I rarely can come up with an original idea, but give me Pinterest and some supplies and I can make it happen.  All of these ideas came from THIS LINK.  I wish I could take credit, but really, I am just a good copier.



The first craft I copied made was the Dove Chocolate paper flower bouquet.  I mean, seriously, what mom wouldn't love something like this....flowers that don't die and taste good?  I used my Cricut machine to cut out flowers with a thick scrapbook paper.  If you don't have a Cricut...what is wrong with you....ok, just kidding, you could google a flower template and a ton pop up.  I found THESE templates when I typed in "free flower template" in the search bar. The flower size I used was a 4 inch flower.   I think it would be fun to play around with different flower shapes too!  I bought pre-painted wood sticks (from the floral department at Hobby Lobby) to save me a step from painting wooden dowels.  After hot glueing the stem onto the back of the flower I used glue dots to attach the dove chocolates to the flower petals.  I found this cute little wood box at Michaels 50% off and used some floral foam from the dollar store to stick the stems into.  I used some leftover Easter grass to cover the foam and called it a day!  I also made another one, which I will be showing on Real Milwaukee, that is a smaller version in a vegetable can.  So cute and so easy!  HERE is the link to the tutorial I used to create this fun candy bouquet!

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When I saw this idea I could hardly contain myself.  I happen to have this tea pot from a Tea Party birthday party I had years ago and dusted it off and boom....adorable.  I seriously went to Piggly Wiggly, bought a $9.99 bouquet of flowers that were already put together, poured some water in the tea pot, cut off most of the stems and put it in the pot!  This is just a fun and creative way to display flowers instead of a vase.  I can't wait to go to Goodwill and hunt for more teapots to use for some Mother's Day gifts!  HERE is the link for the tutorial I used to create the flower pot vase. 



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Now, I'll be honest, I am not a huge fake flower fan.  I think if used correctly, though, they can totally work.  I think this totally works!  I purchased some sunflowers from Hobby Lobby a little over a week ago for something else and then when I saw this idea, I knew exactly what to do with them!  I headed to Goodwill and scored this purse for $4.99.  In keeping with my honesty, I had a friend do the floral arranging for me.  That really isn't in my crafting skill set.  I think she did an amazing job and I can't wait to use this as a decoration piece for an upcoming Farmer's Market event I am having.  This can be hung on a door or set on the ground!  Doesn't it just make you feel like Spring time might eventually come?  HERE is the link for the tutorial I used to create this.  
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I have done melted crayon art before and I think it is just one of the best things to do.  It is so easy and just so cool!  My oldest daughter actually made this entire piece for me.  We used a rectangle canvas that we found for super cheap at Michael's along with some jumbo flowers.  She melted the crayons and hot glued the flowers on.  I am not even kidding.  It was that easy.  The canvases we bought came in a 6 pack and she used all the canvases making crayon art!  HERE its the tutorial I had my daughter use!

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 This next bouquet I love because we personalized it.  We decided to make this for my mom from our kids.  She is always doing sweet things with our kids and I wanted the kids to tell her some of the things they love about her.  I found these pre-made rosettes at Michael's and used a 40% off coupon to buy them.  Next we hot glued paper straws to the back of the rosette.  Next, we drew a leaf on a piece of paper and used that as our template to cut out leaves of cardstock.  My 4 oldest girls talked about what they loved about their "Oma" and wrote it on the leaves.  We hot glued the leaves on and stuck the flowers into a piece of floral foam we shoved inside the bucket.  I found this little bucket in the dollar section at Target.  Once again, I used leftover Easter grass to cover the foam!  THIS is the tutorial I used, but you will see that I tweaked it a bit!

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I'll be honest again with you, this isn't the most easy craft!  I am so happy with the outcome, but I did have to enlist the help of my husband to make this!  We followed THIS tutorial and pretty much copied it step by step.  I am positive we used a different type of glue than they used but ours held just as well.  I ended up taking a paper towel and getting it wet and then put that it a ziploc bag.  I shoved that inside to moss to help keep the flowers watered.  I am excited to fill this with all different types of flowers this summer!  As a mom, I get tons of dandelion bunches from my kids...this would look adorable with a hand full of dandelions in it!


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And lastly, these cupcake bouquets are super popular right now.  My mom decorates cakes and has been making a bunch of these for bridal showers.  I found this pot at Michael's and then purchased a styrofoam ball that I could shove perfectly into the pot.  Half of the ball fit and the other half stuck out to make a round mound which is exactly what you need.  Then, I called my mom and asked her to makes me some cupcakes!  For real.  I don't have time to bake and decorate cupcakes!   The ones in this picture are actually mini cupcakes.  I will be demoing with regular size cupcakes on air.  We froze the cupcakes so they would be easier to work with.  Then I inserted a tooth pick into the bottom of the cupcake and pushed the other end of the tooth pick into the styrofoam ball.  There will be some gaps where you can see the styrofoam ball, so I just used empty cupcake liners to fill in the spots.  Can't you just imagine giving this to a mom or a friend on Mother's Day?  Seriously such a fun and unique idea! 


I think this might be one of my favorite segments yet.  All of these bouquets were really easy and super inexpensive to create.  I know as a mom, receiving a gift like this that takes just a little time and effort means more to me than anything store bought.  Happy crafting and more importantly....Happy early Mother's Day to all the moms out there!