Saturday, March 30, 2013

Kiev, Ukraine Journal - 2-16-1997 and 2-17-1997

*Disclaimer: Please remember that I wrote these when I was 14! I could be a snarky brat! I also am typing these journals exactly as I wrote them, bad spelling and all, except I have abbreviated names to protect the innocent or not-so-innocent.


We woke up around nine. I ate pancakes for breakfast. Our luggage is at the airport. Tomorrow Mom and C will go get it. Chelle is being so mean to me. The church here only meets once a day but for three hours. My rear got very numb. The building here is new and it is really nice. the walls in the halls are peach and the auditorium is blue. RC had a good lesson on "Who is Jesus." Dads lesson materials are in the suitcases and mom and I's bibles were too. Dad did good not having the material though.

*As an interesting side note, my Dad never uses notes to preach anymore.


Mom went and got our luggage with C. I am so glad that it is here. Chelle, R, and I all went to a department store also. I saw a hair barrett that was Ukrainian made and almost bought it. I would of given it to Sarah but when I looked at it close, it really wasn't that pretty. At about 7:00 we went to see the Ss. The kids had gotten a huge trampoline for Christmas but the weight limit was 120 pounds so I couldn't jump on it. I found this toy harmonica and started playing on it. I played it all night. I have got to get me one of those. I was lying on the ground with my feet on the door when A started hitting me for no reason. So I just shoved him out of the way. He fell back and hit his head on the corner of the door really hard. He started crying really loud. He deserved it but I still felt pretty bad. About a month ago K1 tore a ligament in his knee and has to now stay home most of the time. He showed his x-rays to us. They were kinda neat.

Friday, March 29, 2013

DIY Chalkboard Tutorial

I know, I know. I already did a tutorial this week.

But, ya'll, I loved this project so much and it is so easy peasy that I couldn't resist posting it!

I admit that I didn't jump on the chalkboard bandwagon until recently. I kind of hate chalk. The way it feels. The way you can make that awful screeching sound on chalkboards. Ugh. I have nightmares about that.

Anywho, I finally decided to get in on this trend and I am so glad I did! I decided I wanted a small chalkboard in my kitchen for bible verses and notes.

On Monday, I went to my local craft store and found a frame. I have been eyeing this style of frame for a while and this seemed like the perfect project for it! I decided on antique white, but you can also buy this particular frame in red, black and teal. I love the teal, but my kitchen is green. No clashing allowed in this house!

Then I picked up some chalkboard spray paint. I chose Krylon because Krylon and I love each other and I've never been disappointed in the results.

You will also need 220 grit sand paper.

Take the glass out of the frame and set the frame aside. Then the first thing that has to be done is sanding down the glass. The great thing about chalkboard paint is that you can use it on virtually any non-porous surface so you don't have to purchase anything else to go in the frame. Sand down the glass until it is "frosted" looking. That's the only way I know how to describe how it looks.

After shaking the spray paint for the recommended 2 minutes (yes, I actually count to make sure), spray the first coat of paint. I made the mistake of doing this outside on a tarp in the back yard. Oklahoma is known for its wind so this was not a good idea. I ended up having to sand the paint down because the wind blew grass and other flotsam on to it. I moved into the garage after that. After sanding down the first coat, I sprayed it twice more. The paint can said to only do 2 coats, but I wanted to make sure I got good coverage after the first coat disaster.

Let the paint dry and put it back in to the frame.

After letting it dry for a complete 24 hours, break out the chalk!

I need to work on my chalk art...just another thing for me to start pinning!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

St. Patty's Day

 We don't do much for St. Patty's Day normally. We don't celebrate it in a religious way and we don't drink alcohol so we don't celebrate it in that way, either. I don't decorate the house and I don't color our food. I know. I am so St. Patty's Day boring. Despite all of those things we don't do, I made sure that Chloe Jo and I wore green so at least we wouldn't get pinched. Russ claimed he didn't have anything green for Sunday morning services. I know that he has 3 green dress shirts. He just didn't want to participate. I pinched him several times.

I made Chloe Jo a set of shamrock hair bows and a shamrock shirt. She also has a green and white plaid dress that I was waiting for spring to break out. This was the perfect day for her to wear it!

I don't have much green so I ended up wearing this green shirt. Of course, I had to be accessorized with a scarf. I am crazy about scarves. This is our days family picture because Mr. Grinch didn't want to play with us.

Sunday evening, we broke out CJ's shamrock shirt. She had the tights from her Strawberry Shortcake birthday party last year. And of course we had to go with the gold shoes!

Hope your St. Patty's Day was fun!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Tulle Wreath Tutorial

I have been seeing these adorable tulle wreaths floating around Pinterest and knew I had to make one. I love wreaths. They are one of my favorite things to decorate with and I enjoy the creative process to make one. I think my wreath turned out so cute and I want to share how I did it.

What you will need:
1 styrofoam wreath form
tulle spools (I used two colors, but you can use how many or few colors you want)
ribbon (if you want to also use ribbon)
decorations (if you want...these wreaths are so pretty they can stand on their own, too)

I wanted to decorate my wreath specifically for Chloe Jo's 4th birthday party so we bought 1 spool of pink tulle, 1 spool of glittery white tulle, a wooden four, purple paint, and lots of felt to make princess accessories.

I started with painting the wooden 4. I chose purple. I wanted a color that would stand out against the other colors so I went fairly dark with the purple.

While the paint was drying on the 4, I made 3 felt princess themed decorations. I did end up painting the back of the crown with fabric stiffener because the glitter poms made it fold over. I printed pictures from the internet and went off of them for these. I also cut Chloe Jo's name out in purple sparkly felt.

I then decided how much I wanted the ends of the ribbon and tulle to stick out from my wreath by just draping it over the wreath form. After making the decision, I cut several pieces of each color of tulle and ribbon that length.

Then I tied the tulle around the wreath form making sure the knot was on the outside of the form. I wanted more pink in mine so I did pink, white, pink, ribbon for my pattern.

I then hot glued the felt pieces on the wreath and hung the 4 in the middle with another piece of ribbon.

And there you have a darling wreath fit for a princess!

You can also do this wreath with all ribbon, different sizes of ribbon, all tulle. The possibilities are endless!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

My Girls

I took a few pictures of Brianna and Chloe Jo after Bible class a couple of Wednesday nights ago. I am planning to use them to decorate our door, but I haven't gotten to it yet.

I just love the pictures and have to share!

These girls keep me on my toes and make life so fun!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Party Prep

Chloe Jo's birthday party is just days away and I am so excited! I have been preparing for this party since November (when I found tutus on after Halloween clearance). We decided to have a Princess Tea Party theme. I am letting her invite just a few of the little girls we know (we actually only know 5 her age) to come celebrate with us. It is going to be a girls only party (sorry Grampy) and we are going to have so much fun!

I decided to make Chloe Jo a shirt and necklace to wear for the party. I made this necklace for Chloe Jo and it just happened to match this dress perfectly. I bought the birthstone girl charm from a shop on Etsy that I am in love with. She makes all kinds of different polymer clay beads. I customized the girl to have light brown hair like CJ. I did think the other birthstone girls were prettier (read more colorful) than this one, but April's birthstone is the diamond so I went with it.

This is the shirt I made for her. She has a light pink tutu that she is going to wear at the party, but I made a matching skirt for Bible class and going out in. I'm getting much better with my embroidery machine. This is the first shirt that I am super happy with.

I dug out these ribbon topiary's to use as table decoration. When I made these for a baby shower last year, I  didn't really think I would use them that much. Well, I was wrong. I have used them several times since that baby shower and they have definitely proved useful!

I also had a bag of tulle poms that I kept from CJ's birthday party last year and my Grandparent's 60th wedding anniversary party. Again, I didn't know if I would use all that again, but I sure am. The great thing about tulle is that you can smash it to store and fluff it out whenever you want to use it.

Since we are going with a princess tea party theme, I bought a few pieces of a tea set at Hobby Lobby for the table. The cake stand with the teapot, sugar bowl and milk jug will sit in the middle of the table and each little girl will get a tea cup, saucer and petit four at her place. I also bought tea cup place cards to write their names on.

These are the tutus I found for the girls to wear. The are going to come in and immediately pick a tutu to wear (if all goes according to plan and they cooperate!). They will get to take their tutu home with them when they leave.

I also bought foam crowns for the girls to decorate and I have a Princess cupcake game we are going to play.

Planning this party has been so fun!

I really hope everything goes according to plan...or if it doesn't, no disasters befall us!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Kiev, Ukraine Journal - 2-15-1997 and 2-16-1997

*Disclaimer: Please remember that I wrote these when I was 14! I could be a snarky brat! I also am typing these journals exactly as I wrote them, bad spelling and all, except I have abbreviated names to protect the innocent or not-so-innocent.


We got up at 7:30. I didn't have any jetlag. Everybody is jealous. I slept throug the whole night. We ate a delicious Austrian breakfast. It consisted of nuts, fruit, rolled pancakes, sausage, eggs, and juice. The sausage was weird. It was like a wienny. The fruit was really good and the mult viatamin juice was to. Mom had some orange juice that they fresh squeezed right in front of you. I toke a drink of it and the lady brought me one. That was so good. It was the best orange juice I had ever had. Then we hitched a ride back to the airport. We flew Delta on all our flights except this one. We had to fly Ukranian Air. The pilot was an idiot. He must have really liked turning because he was all over. And you could smoke on that flight. The smell of smoke and dinner mixed and made us stink so bad. The pilot was going 800 mph and the top speed for that type of plane was 820 mph. 20 minutes before we landed he started to nosedive to get to the ground on time. Everyones ears hurt really bad. We got through customs. 4 of our bags were not there. Guess what four were? I guessed it. The C's and the S's. All of our clothes and towells were lost. And Dad had to announce to the whole world that he didn't have any underwear for tomorrow.

Friday, March 22, 2013

My Recipe Box: Pizza Balls

This is another one of those Pinterest pins that ended up in my Pintastic Pins I have Tried folder.

The best part of this recipe (besides the fact that they were delicious) was that Chloe Jo was able to actually help me. As CJ has grown, this year especially, she has started taking on more responsibility. I know, that's the way it is supposed to be, but it really is fun to see on a one on one, daily basis. Sometimes, though, when she "helps" me in the kitchen, it is not really help. You know what I mean. I don't want to turn her away, but it really just makes more work for me. This recipe was one of those that she could really help and it didn't make any extra work for me. Plus, we had a great time doing it together!

The original pin can be found here.

Pizza Balls

3 cans buttermilk biscuits (10 count)
1 package pepperoni
1 block of cheese (I used mozzarella)
1 beaten egg
Parmesan cheese
Italian seasoning
Garlic Powder
1 jar pizza sauce

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Slice cheese into thin, 1 inch squares. Flatten each biscuit and stack 1 pepperoni, 1 piece of cheese, and 1 more pepperoni on biscuit. Pull edges of biscuit over the top of pepperoni to make a ball. Brush top of balls with beaten egg. Line balls in a 13x9 inch, greased baking dish. Sprinkle with Parmesan, Italian seasoning and garlic powder. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes. Serve with warm pizza sauce.


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Craft Day

A couple of weeks ago, I got together with Kristin and Rebecca for another sewing day! Note to self: get a picture of us the next time we get together. They are the ones I got together with for the quilting day a while back. We are so going to make this a regular thing, right girls!?! This time, we all brought different projects to do. I had several sewing projects so I decided to get the things I had on the list for Chloe Jo done.

I did end up finishing 2 skirts and starting a dress.

The skirts I did matched the shirts I had made previously. The chick set is for Easter, but I'm going to let her wear it through the spring since it isn't overly Eastery and the other set is for her birthday. She had a tutu to wear for her party, but I thought a nice matching skirt would be better for Bible Class and wearing out.

I didn't get very far on the dress on that day, but I did end up finishing it Saturday evening.

I let Chloe Jo pick out the fabrics and I know she will love it.

I do believe I picked the hardest pattern I could have for this dress. Gathering is my sewing nemesis. This gathered inset was a bear, but I did finally get it done after a couple of hours of gathering, taking out, gathering some more and adjusting.

I am excited to see my darling in all these things I made for her!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Come on Springtime!

I am so excited about Spring! We have had warm days here and there so I know winter is moving on out!

To celebrate the beginning of Spring, Chloe Jo and I did *what else* a craft project together!

I have several wreaths pinned on my Pinterest that I love so we decided to do one of them.

The actual pin was done in fall colors, but we went with fun, bright spring colors. Chloe Jo helped me pick the colors and I cut them out and glued them on the wreath.

I think it turned out so cute! It is quite bright, but cute nonetheless!

Crafting with my girl is one of my biggest joys!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


 I love long hair on little girls.

I have always looked forward to doing fun things like braiding my daughter's hair.

Well, it doesn't seem like that is ever going to happen.

You see, Chloe Jo suffers from a disease of the hair. It's called Unmaneagableitis.

For realzies, her hair is awful. Sometimes it will lay down better if she is on day 4 of no washing, but my OCD won't let me let her go that long without a bath most of the time.

Here is a picture of her hair when it actually looked pretty good. I must have threatened it that day.

Most days, though, it looks like she stuck her finger in a light socket. Es no bueno.

I have tried several different things to help it...leave in conditioner, straightener, mousse, etc. but nothing has helped it. She is deathly afraid of the blow dryer (and vacuum and dust buster and anything that is loud) so that is out.

So I finally took her to the salon and had them cut it into a bob. Hello, I forgot how cute she looks with a bob!

I do believe this girl is destined to be a short haired girl (at least until puberty when her hormones will go wonky and her hair will change forever...uh, let's not think about that...moving on).

Oh, and she actually let someone touch her without crying! Eek! This makes me extremely happy and a tad bit sad. I am so glad she is finally growing out of that, but I am also sad that she is becoming more independent. It seems like she is getting herself ready for preschool.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Brenny and Bri's Birthday Party

One of the hardest things about living in South Carolina for me was that I didn't get to be with my family to celebrate milestones like birthdays or Brenson's birth.

One of the best things about being close to my sister is that I get to spend a lot of time with my precious niece, Brianna, and nephew, Brenson (oh...and Chelley and Chris, too).

Brianna and Brenson have birthdays 1 week apart. At the beginning of February they went to Disney as part of their birthday celebrations, but my sister also decided to have a party for them after they got back.

I loved celebrating these milestones with them!

Brianna turned 3 and Brenson turned 1. This was the first and only shot I took of them. They obviously had a lot of things to do because they smiled perfectly the first time. :)

Chelley loves to decorate (we definitely have that in common) and her house was so cute! She said it was kind of difficult to decorate for a girl/boy party, but she did fantastic!

This is the entry into their kitchen/dining area.

This is the cake table complete with a smash cake for Brenson.

This was Brenson's area. She does a monthly photo picture for her children's first year. She displayed Brianna's monthly photos like this at her first birthday party, too. 

And this was Brianna's area. 

 The night before the party I went over to her house to make these tissue paper poms for her. In my opinion, these are the cheapest, most bang for your buck party decorations. I thought I had a tutorial of how to make them, but I guess I never did it...I'll have to remedy that the next time I make them (I have a party I'm helping decorate for coming up this month so it will be soon).

Of course I needed a picture of the besties. I must get this printed to update Chloe Jo's "cousins" frame.

And last of all, I wanted to mention that I made Brenson and Brianna's birthday shirts. I didn't do the embroidery on them because my machine was very new when Chelley needed it done, but I can do it now. If you are interested in ordering a shirt, go here. One of Brenny's birthday presents from us was this stegosaurus shirt I made for him. I'm so happy with how it turned out! I wanted to embroider "Brenny-suarus" on it, but my sister is not really into those cutesy types of things. :)

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Kiev, Ukraine Journal - 2-13-1997 and 2-14-1997

*Disclaimer: Please remember that I wrote these when I was 14! I could be a snarky brat! I also am typing these journals exactly as I wrote them, bad spelling and all, except I have abbreviated names to protect the innocent or not-so-innocent.


J came over around 10 and the Ps came around 10:30. We loaded all of our luggage into the truck and went to the airport. R and C came to the airport to say goodbye. They stayed until we boarded the plane. I did some spelling while we are waiting. I have one lesson done. I have a lot of homework. The plane ride was peaceful. I got 2 extra bags of peanuts. I will save those for a rainy day. The flight was about 4 hours long. I did more homework on it. I have 2 chapters in Algebra to do. The plane was delayed about an hour so when we landed we had already missed our flight to Vienna. We were then routed through Frankfurt Germany with 30 minutes to get to the flight to Kiev. The food on the plane was terrible. My meat was bleading. We were put on the business class because they had no more seats in the other. We had our own TV's and everything. That was awwsome.

*R and C were able to sit with us while we waited to board our plane. This was before all the restrictions of 9/11.


I had fresh fruit for breakfast. That was delicious. I also had a bagel and a cup of strawberry yougart. I did some more homework. I am done with spelling and a lot of analagies. I absolutely love the analogies. We landed in Frankfurt around 12:00. But then we sat out on the tarmac for 45 minutes. The landing was really smooth. It was nice. So we missed out flight to Kiev. We had to spend the night there. We walked the town. I bought a shirt. We also all shared a Frankfurter in Frankfurt. Ha Ha. I bet Jeremiah will be really jealous.

*Jeremiah was a high school friend who lived in Frankfurt because his parents were deployed there.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Bible Class Facelift

The Bible Class Workshop that I wrote about on Wednesday was just what I needed to give me ideas of some of the things I wanted to do with my Bible classroom.

I started with making this New Testament Books caterpillar. Each student started with a small head and as they learn the books, they get the coordinating caterpillar pieces. The pieces are sorted by sections which is why each piece has different numbers of books. The two pink pieces are one section of books. I also have templates for an Old Testament caterpillar once the girls learn the New Testament.

Another thing we are learning in class is Bible facts. I saw this idea in a book and put my own spin on it. I found the paint cans and brushes at Dollar Tree. They come in packages of 10 so I had plenty for what I wanted. I wrote 1 Bible fact on each can.

 We are studying Genesis right now so I did the other half of the bulletin board with our memory verse from Genesis 1:1 and pictures of the days of creation.

I made the days of creation pictures. The actual pictures came with the material, but I cut it out, pasted it on cardstock and had it laminated. I then cut a sheet of magnet into squares and put them in the corners of each picture. I found the number magnets at Dollar Tree and they are perfect for this visual. Now I can take the numbers off and the girls can put them back on where they go.

The last visual I want to write about is the 5 Acts of Worship puzzle I made. I first drew the 5 on a piece of foam core board. I then wrote each act of worship on each piece and colored it in. I took my exacto knife and cut the pieces out. I then took the reverse of the 5 and glued it to another piece of foam core. After it dried I put the pieces back in and had a puzzle. I'm very happy with the way it turned out!

I'm so happy to have the chance to teach my daughter in Bible class and I want to make the most of it!

Here is a video of Chloe Jo saying her memory verse. Since the girls have their memory verse down so well, we are now adding verse 2.