Sunday, March 17, 2019

Sunday Verses

Let Your Light Shine
Happy Sunday! We finally got some days of sunshine this past week and I am loving it. The other morning the much welcomed morning sun was shining through the window and casting a shadow on the wall that looked almost iridescent. Light--it makes such a difference in how we see and in how we feel and react to things. We are called to be a light to each other every day. We don't need to wait for the big gestures to shine for others. Be a daily light in the small things and in small ways: include rather than exclude, be positive instead of someone who complains and is negative, be polite in your interactions not short and rude, listen to someone rather than talking at them, give grace instead of impatience, smile. People notice light, they notice the subtle differences in people who let Jesus shine through them.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Spring Signs

Supposedly robins have been spotted in the area. However, I haven't seen any yet and as we speak, my hubby is helping to clear the high school track of two feet of snow. But, I know spring will arrive eventually. In the meantime I made some signs for spring.
Stenciled Signs for Spring
(affiliate links)
These signs are approximately 15" x 15" and painted using These Folk Art Stencils (BUY HERE) and Funky Junk Old Sign Stencils (BUY HERE)
Stenciled Signs for Spring
I painted them on some salvaged plywood and framed each one out. Each sign is a little different and I am selling them locally.
Stenciled Signs for Spring

Stenciled Signs for Spring

Stenciled Signs for Spring

Stenciled Signs for Spring

Stenciled Signs for Spring
Which is your favorite?

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Thrifty Thursday Planters


Thrifty Thursday Planters
Spring is upon us, although looking outside it is hard to tell because it is still a sea of white snow. But, inside I am ready for color and new life and green.
Thrifty Thursday Planters

When I bought this small, silver chafing dish I had no idea what I was going to use it for, but soon found a use for it.  

Thrifty Thursday Planters
This Thrifty Thursday project is not really a project at all. But, the thrift store is one of the best places to get unique planters for house plants. LOOK for tarnished silver containers, metal buckets, vintage pottery, kid's galoshes, great baskets, pretty teacups, cowboy boots.
Thrifty Thursday Planters
If you have something that you can't drill drainage holes in, be sure to put a little gravel in the bottom or use a plastic planter with a saucer inside the thrift store item.
Thrifty Thursday Planters
The sunny yellow pot and the green make me feel a little warmer and I love a simple, thrift store repurpose!
Thrifty Thursday Planters

Monday, March 11, 2019

Rustic Indian Paintbrush Painting

Last summer the Indian Paintbrush flourished in Montana. I love it, but hubby has a tough time seeing it because he is color blind and the red is hard for him to see amidst the green. We joke about it and he often has to be right on top of it to notice it. 
Rustic Indian Paintbrush Painting
I snapped this picture of the Indian Paintbrush on one of our hikes. It was a day that was hotter than we expected, and we got lost going to our destination (the helicopter pad at the top of Bridger Mountain) so we hiked a few more miles than planned, and we didn't have enough water. But, we finally made it to the top and the views were spectacular. 
Views from Bridger Bowl
I decided to paint some Indian Paintbrush, using ONLY wood scraps as my paintbrushes and a piece of plywood as my canvas.
Rustic Indian Paintbrush Painting
I have shad some people ask about a tutorial on my process. I am not sure I am ready to share that yet, nor do I know if it is something I can teach. But, I will say I just grab little craps of wood from around my chopsaw and dip it into paint--some craft, some latex, and paint. I layer the colors.
Rustic Indian Paintbrush Painting
When I am done. I do a little sanding, add a frame and stain the whole piece. 
Rustic Indian Paintbrush Painting

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Sunday Verses

Stop Complaining and Focus on the Positive
Happy Sunday! This past Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of Lent. Lent is a time before Easter where we focus on Jesus's sacrifice on the cross. Many people give up something for Lent or fast during the season to refocus their relationship with Jesus and to remember he gave up. After realizing I have been doing too much complaining lately, I have decided to do my best to give it up (and hopefully it will become a permanent habit!). I am working on focusing on the positive, on seeing the good in tough situations, on turning negative conversations around. And while I know I will still have moments where I grumble, I am keeping this verse close by.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Great Growler Makeover

So, here's a fun fact for you: Montana ranks second in the nation for number of microbrews per capita. Y'all, we like our beer. And as a result, there are all types of growlers in the thrift stores. For those of you who do not know, a growler is a container for beer bought by the measure (official definition there!). People take their growlers to the breweries to get them filled and take their beer home.

Upcycle a Thrift Store Growler
I had been keeping my eye open for a clear one because many of them are brown (which are a fun, warm color for display). I finally found a clear one that looks like it might have been used for home brewing.
Upcycle a Thrift Store Growler
After removing the label, I painted the growler with Martha Stewart glass paint. Mine is at least five years old, but I think you can still get it at craft stores. 
Upcycle a Thrift Store Growler
I decided to build a wood crate for the growler. Using scrap wood, wood glue, and my brad nailer, I hobbled together a crate for the jug. Historically, large 5 gallon jugs would be shipped in a wood crate that looked similar to this mini one I built for my growler.
Upcycle a Thrift Store Growler
I clipped some bamboo branches from our solarium to add a bit of green to our otherwise too snowy, too white world. Bamboo is supposed to bring good luck. It grows like crazy.
Upcycle a Thrift Store Growler
Always look at the jars and for growlers at the thrift store. There are so many different ones and they make great display pieces. Line up a bunch on a sunny windowsill, use wide mouth jars for STUFF, or use them for a centerpiece like I am.
Upcycle a Thrift Store Growler


Sunday, March 3, 2019

Sunday Verses


Devotional on God Saying You Are Enough
Happy Sunday! I have been studying this past week for some online work I am trying to do. I have to take a test to be approved to do the work and I am nervous. I graduated from college 31 years ago and other than some continuing ed. classes, I have not had to study, let alone take a test in a long time. I have been busy scribbling illegible notes on scratch paper to try to trigger the ol' memory keeper. And let me tell you, I have said more than once, "I can't do this!" and have felt like I am not smart enough. We all have times when we feel like we are not enough--not smart enough, not pretty enough, not a good enough parent or partner, not rich enough. Sometimes it is our inner dialogue and sometimes it is someone else who makes us feel like we are not enough. STOP! God says with him, you are enough. He doesn't see you as a fixer-upper project, but loves you and honors you just as you are. With Jesus on your side, YOU ARE ENOUGH! Believe it, know it, and live like it.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Rustic Spring Flowers

Like many of you have had this year, we are smack dab in the middle of a big ol' winter storm. Honestly, February weather has been bad--so many sub zero days and finally, lots of snow. 
flowered wrapping paper
A few weeks ago, while I was wrapping presents for my dear daughter's birthday, I was inspired by the wrapping paper and decided to paint spring flowers, even if it is still winter out. When life gives you winter, paint flowers might be my new motto!
paint spring flowers
If you follow my blog, you know I have recently started painting with wood scraps. I am not sure how or why this cam about--just something I decided to try that I really enjoy. I grab scraps of wood from the ground near my saw and dip them in paint and paint away.
paint with wood scraps as paintbrushes
I used a piece of quarter-sawn barnwood for this painting, giving the background extra texture. 
Rustic Spring Flowers
I framed it out with a wood and painted it white and then stained it all. Fresh flowers to add a little color to the sea of white outdoors. Stay warm friends!
Rustic Spring Flowers

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Sunday Verses

Devotional on Not Taking Things for Granted
Happy Sunday! This past week I was talking to someone who has never been to Yellowstone Park. I was trying to give some hints and tricks to navigate the park in the busy season, but added that we avoid Yellowstone in the middle of the summer. She commented how lucky we are to be able to do enjoy it during the quieter months. We all have things in our lives that we take for granted--our surroundings, our spaces, our circumstances, our people. But, if I know anything, it is that life is ever-changing and we don't know what is going to happen next. We need to appreciate when things are going well and hold on when they are not, knowing that God has us in his hands. Let's work on not taking life and the many gifts it has for us for granted.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Thrifty Thursday Vintage Maps

Thrifty Thursday Vintage Map Project

I love old maps, especially fabric ones, but those are hard to come by. However, old atlases are still pretty easy to find at the thrift store. Today's thrifty Thursday project started with a couple of old atlases and those giant pick-up sticks I used last week (HERE)

Thrifty Thursday Vintage Map Project
The maps in these old books are lovely, the colors make my heart go pitter-patter. But, the paper they are printed on is thin and tears easily. 
Thrifty Thursday Vintage Map Project

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Sunday Verses

Show Up for Others and be THERE for Them
Happy Sunday! I am a sunrise and sunset watcher and living where I do, I count on seeing some pretty amazing skies most of the time. And, I KNOW the sun will show up and rise every day over the mountains to the east and that it will set each evening over the mountains in the west. When Job was suffering horribly, three friends came to him, wailed with him, and sat with him. They didn't know why he was suffering, but they were reliable and showed up anyway. We need to show up every day for others in our life. Whether you realize it or not, someone is depending on you to show up. Someone needs you to simply be there--to sit with them, to be present, to be dependable. Know that every day the world needs YOU to show up--someone is anticipating and hoping you will be there. 

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Thrifty Thursday Pick Up Sticks Lamp

make a funky lamp from thrift store pick up sticks

I recently found these at the thrift store: XXL yard game pick-up sticks. I wasn't sure when I bought them if I was going to upcycle, repurpose them or use them for projects. But, soon project ideas started running through my head, so they won out over outdoor fun.

thrift store finds
I loved the colors painted on them and decide to use 15 of them (3 of each color) to make a funky lamp.
Make a Funky Lamp from Thrift Store Pick Up Sticks

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Sunday Verses

Take Time to Rest
Happy Sunday! Like much of the country, it has been cold here in Montana. And while that is not unusual, for me it sure has induced a need to hibernate, more so than usual. I have been happy to stay home, avoiding social events, but that has made me feel a bit guilty. Why do we feel like we always have to be doing? It isn't from God.There are several verses in the Bible telling us to rest--from work, from worry and fear, from stress and anxiety. Jesus needed and took time to rest. When we allow ourselves time to slow down, to renew in quiet, to pause, and embrace rest rather than feel guilty about it, we are able to better connect with Jesus. Give yourself permission to slow down, receive God's gift of rest and grace, and enjoy the quiet days.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Rustic Grain Elevator Painting

For the past two months I have been playing with painting some of my favorite Montana scenes and spots. Here is my latest:

Rustic Grain Elevator Painting
I use salvaged pieces of plywood as my canvas and scrap wood pieces and chunks as my paintbrushes.
Rustic Grain Elevator Painting
This photo was my inspiration for this piece. My painting is not an exact replica, but rather inspired by the photo.
Rustic Grain Elevator Painting
The background is my starting point, I usually use two or three colors. I then paint and fix and paint and add and sand until I am happy.
Rustic Grain Elevator Painting
My final step is adding a frame, staining everything, and clear coating. I have sold a handful of these paintings and am enjoying the challenge and creative aspect of painting with scrap wood pieces.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Reclaimed Wood Hearts

'Tis the season...for HEARTS! I have been working on a few projects. This reclaimed wood heart art is an oldie, but one that is always a favorite. 

Reclaimed Wood Hearts