Lust List: March ’16 Edition

Well friends, in my last post I shared a fabulous table I purchase with the help of an amazing little blessing.. So, basically, all of my farmhouse decor wishes were answer…

HA!

Of course I’m always thinking of what else I could possibly have to bring me to the level of white and farmhouse I’m searching for.

I have not yet purchased anything from my January Lust List, but in the last two months I’ve had a lot of time to window shop! My goal again is to create a list of someday items that I have a good feeling about and others that I could purchase next paycheck if I so desired… I tend to get distracted at Hobby Lobby though!

1. Galvanized Pedestal/Cake Stand

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I have seen several variations of these. This set is from Antique Farmhouse and the solo one is available at World Market. I can see placing a white pitcher full of lavender or wheat on it. It would be great in the awkward corner of the kitchen.

2. Metal Laundry Basket

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As far as design and function go, I think it would be nice to have a laundry basket that is kept in the laundry room to help on big laundry days when there is lots of sorting and overflow to deal with. I would really like to have one of those vintage style ones that have legs to bring the clothing up higher, but they are pricey. There are also many other places to by this style of laundry basket, but at less than $20, Walmart wins.

(Speaking of the laundry room, I can’t wait to share mine with you all! We are making some progress!)

3. Accordion Drying Rack

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Farm life has it’s perks… And one of those pastoral/not so realistic ones for the modern woman is drying clothes on a clothesline. Yes of course we have one, but I am rarely home during the day to dry things outside. My life is sporadic and I often have to do laundry when it’s inconvenient to use the clothesline. I work 9-6, Tuesday-Saturday… My Sundays are split between playtime and housework, so the clothesline will get used some, this is just another option that will get use A LOT. I’m VERY thankful my someday mother-in-law is helping me get this in the laundry room.

4. New Bedding

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I am inspired by this photo for my bedding. I just love how simple it is. No fuss, except to keep the dog from snagging the threads! This creamy quilt will work nicely to throw my current duvet over in the winter. I’m hoping to find a nice big chunky afghan for accent at the foot of the bed. Some pillowcases with a small amount of frill such as crochet or a very simple linen ruffle… ahhh farmhouse heaven!

5. Small Flower Pots

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I’m hoping to grow maybe 3 herbs in the kitchen this summer: Basil, Oregano, and Chives…? I haven’t really decided yet! But these little pots are available at my favorite shop in town! You can also find them at Farmhousewares.com. Or perhaps I will decide on different pots to plant my herbs in, but these are definitely darling!

 

Lilacs & Honeysuckle

And just like that it was time to brighten things up around the farmhouse and celebrate spring and the resurrection. A little here, a little there.

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Don’t tell anyone, but Im starting to get fond of this ugly old headboard. It’s become quite the work-horse! Alas, I must wait to find the right furniture for this room because after a few months or so it will be serving as our dining room! No sense rushing out to find something for a space you can’t predict.

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Again, I just love using printables and whatever scrapbook paper is around to give them a personal touch. The dandelion print was a gift, the fauna were thrifted many moons ago and the white deer is definitely in my top ten of favorite things to decorate with.

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The mossy friends have been EVERYWHERE in the farmhouse circle. Grabbed the last two at my local Hobby Lobby. Score. Wood candle holders and hobnail candle are from The Faithful Farmhouse, a local shop that sells handmade items like my GIANT gather sign in the kitchen as well as many items from Creative Co-op.

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This tray in the kitchen is always the most fun and easy to fix up! I love the ease of using my everyday pieces and mixing in a few small seasonal things.

I created this embroidered image myself. Back when Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros had just come out with this song and I was swooning. Times were so different then! I was Tumblr-in’…#hipster much? Things never change… I still love my pretentious records!

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I decided to give the classic blue color a try for the mason jar. I saw some of the “eggs in a jar” at Hobby Lobby and thought eh, I can make up my own! Burlap plant is The Faithful Farmhouse.

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In the spring, lilac is an absolute must for me. Nothing brings back such tender wonder-filled memories as the scent of lilacs. We had a row of them in our backyard in the part of the yard I call ed my secret garden. Next would have to be the honeysuckle in grandpa’s backyard.

Again with the printable, and behold: deer shed! I knew eventually I would get my hands on some. This piece was given to me as a hat for my dog… My boss is hilarious.

The small moss bunnies and nests are from Hobby Lobby and they are just the perfect size to tuck into the nooks and crannies. Again I wasn’t trying to go too overboard with the Easter/Spring stuff… Michael is probably like “What is with all the froofroo stuff?!” These little guys were actually plant fronds…? If thats what they are called… They are made to be stuck into floral arrangements. So, I took the long wires off or curled them around under and voila!

I feel like the most blessed person right now. Even amidst my trivial trials I see so many good little things that happen in my life and find myself quietly saying “Thank goodness for…”

This last weekend I was the first prize winner of a gift certificate to my FAVORITE store in Dodge, Boot Hill Antiques! (Where The Faithful Farmhouse is). So I thought it was a sign to go ahead and buy the one purchase I NEVER thought I would be able to, and probably still shouldn’t have, but eh… Go with it when it’s good!

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So I feel like I am a giant leap closer to something. The look I want to achieve? SOMETHING. An man… There’s some major curving in these photos. I guess I will start looking into wide angle lenses… Sheesh…

Have a blessed week everyone and HAPPY SPRING!

Lucky, Blessed

It’s way over due, but I had to share this years St. Paddy’s decor. This is the first time I have ever decorated for St. Pat’s and, unless I have a good handful of people over, i will probably keep it at a minimum! I’m definitely beginning to get “holiday-ed” out!

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But as I am a wee bit Irish myself, I must partake in the observance of it.

I’m not downing kegs of green beer, but I like to play with all of the traditions, and every year I learn a little bit more.

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I love that this holiday is really more of an Irish-American phenomenon. The foods we eat are not generally prominent in Ireland. There’s a ton of comparisons and facts online. BUT… whether we are talking true Irish or Irish-American aren’t all of us irish and part Irish people a little bit of both? We have ancestors from the mother land and those that came here, I mean that’s how we ended up here after all!

So YES! EAT the eats, DRINK the drinks, and WEAR the GREEN!

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The food I made was a fiasco that I don’t really wish to reflect on, but we DID eat Corned Beef and Cabbage, Soda Bread, and Bread Pudding. I also have a ton of recipes for the future to sprinkle into every day life. I can’t believe I haven’t tried making Shepard’s Pie yet!

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When decorating I am a HUGE fan of free printables on Pinterest! I do NOT claim this print as my own, but it is easy to find there and adds some instant charm and fills up a good amount of decorative space. Makes them however big or little you need and jazz them up. I may start keeping a folder of them all together for easy access.

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So whether the meal was a fiasco or not, I still feel so blessed. I get excited when I am able to claim my own heritage. We spend so much time learning about the importance of diversity and immersing ourselves into other cultures, but we should definitely reflect on our own as well! The banner I made up above was done using some antique postcard images found online and washi taped to some spare paper and then taped to twine. I love a quick and dirty DIY!

Irish blessings to you through the year!

Love is… An Adventure with your Sweetheart

 

imageimageHello friends!

What a weekend I had!

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My Valentine brought me roses before we left for a little weekend getaway. He had been dying to ride the dunes in Oklahoma. He acted as if that was going to be a no-go for me because of “V-Day”, BUT that’s really my kind of thing! Adventure, that is!

It was a blast, the dog had the most fun!, and I managed to get my homework done and take him out for dinner. 😉

So that brings me to the fun I had today!

I’ve been busting my buns prepping lesson plans for the students I am tutoring as part of an internship and I won’t lie, I was everything but graceful. I had to run to Walmart for some things, ran out of time, and realized Inhad left some important things at home!… Just learning about living in the country and working in town! Talk about waiting til the last minute though!

But with my mother’s help I was able to whip up more than enough of the supplies I needed! I had a really successful lesson with my students in the end.

Here’s a little OOTD

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Keeping the vibe fresh and free.

Tops: Buckle (forever ago), Jeggings: American Eagle Outfitters, Shoes: Maurice’s, Tote and necklace: Hobby Lobby

I love this top because it reminds me of a combination of these looks… And Stevie, YOU are the inspiration of my favorite looks!

I try to grab things that remind me of her… Love the gypsy, hippie, free spirit.

My bag was a fun purchase. I realized it’s time to become a tote bag owner… Hello, thirty-one! Hobby Lobby has a great price on these! I love some me positive affirmations. “Best day ever”!

While out and about losing my head I came across half price Velantines Day decorations! (The shopping bags at my feet hehe) I grabbed a good handful for my someday classroom.

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Even with the stress of my college classes, it was a wonderful weekend… Heck, it’s a wonderful life!

Wow… A travel post, OOTD, and shopping haul all-in-one!

 

 

Yay! I made a Scrapbook! & What I Learned While Making It!

Sometimes I think it’s a strange thing that I want to collect all of my favorite photos and decorate them and then I say “Ashley, it’s a gazillion dollar industry. You are a little fish in a big pond of scrapbookers and cratfers!”.

Earlier I talked about wanting to take the plunge to do this. Part of my new years resolution was to create. I wasn’t limiting myself to any certain projects, but I thought that if I could get myself into the mindset of creating that the possibilities would be limitless. So here is to the start of a good and crafty year!

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I LOVE this page! Ready…Set…GO (then a tiny picture of our friends bolting away) & they’re off!

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I made this scrapbook in 3 nights after I figured out my new Pixma printer and the basics of Photoshop.n  There are 4 pictures left to print, but I ran out of paper! I’ve got more on order, you best believe!

So I have some things to share with you after my first experience.

1.You will read about being overwhelmed with Project Life, and you WILL BE overwhelmed. It’s ok. It’s part of the process! I don’t believe this system was decide to do such a thing, but learn what kind of doses you can take it in! My next project, after our trips, is putting together books for each year we’ve been together, while trying to keep track of the current year. Trust me… these books will take forever, and thats ok. I’m planning on writing little notes about special days in my planner to help me look back. You do YOU!

2. When it comes to the initial shopping for supplies… well we are all in our own financial situations. I had the money at the time to buy more than enough. This is because I have three trips to scrapbook! So I suggest purchasing papers, cards, washi, and stickers that are your style. Go with your gut, something you love. I am a lover of all things turquoise. I also love the chalkboard look, burlap, washed wood, and polka dots. The color scheme worked itself out. I needed natural colors to complement all of the nature things we saw. It just comes together.

3. If you have your own photo printer and editing software don’t freak out about the sizes of you photographs and the pocket pages. They will work themselves out. I ran into several instances where I had to trim a picture down, add a decorative edge to make up space, or cover something up. it all works out. I learned that 4×6 and for some reason 3.8X2.8 worked nicely and I went from there

Here are some mistakes that turned out nicely, in my opinion:

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The picture of the tree turned out too small, but really it just gave it a nice crisp border!

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The pictures along the edge turned out short, so I added some scrap paper behind and washi!

4. When planning and working, I tried to divide things into chucks of events. I would see how many pictures were in the event, decide how many pocket pages I needed and what types would work better for the pictures I had taken (horizontal or vertical). Then I would imagine them in the pages and start printing. Some pictures are easy to imagine as a certain size and orientation. Sometimes I would lay them out, but I did this more with the decorative papers. I tried to have 2 decorative papers per side of every page to allow for a nice quote and some journaling.

5. One of my favorite things I came up with was making my own pocket page cards from scrapbook paper. The corner round cutter from Becky Higgins was amazing. (Other brands make these) All of my photos and papers were consistent this way. This also allowed me to have full control over the look of my book. I was not limited to the small supply of pocket page cards available at my Hobby Lobby. So my tip is to make your own cards and buy some! I bought some that were black and white with nice quotes and patterns and a chalkboard look to them, but picked my own colorful papers to use!

6. And with that, don’t limit yourself to brands. A lot of people use Project Life or Pocket Pages by mamBi, and even others yet, but these systems all work interchangeably pretty well!

*Again, I’m working on my photography. I will try to remember to upload photos that are more focused, but have you ever needed to get a post out there because it’s been sitting so long? Here it is, no fears folks! Putting myself out there! Also, The lighting in Kansas is so bad right now because of Daylight Savings time. I have little time to get my pictures taken when I get home! It’s all good though, I’m still learning.

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Holy Haul

Holy Moley was said mentally and under my breath about a thousand times in the last week. This is the haul to set them all apart.

Guys what I am about to share with you is something that I have wanted to do/have for a very, very long time now.

I decided it was time to get my photographs made physical. I have so many burning in my files and it is high time to print the most important ones. Being the crafty person I am, printed pictures would ideally go hand in hand with scrap booking.

I went all out.

I started with some scrap-booking tools. A cutter, and corner round cutter, tape glue dots, and some nice journaling pens.

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Next were the bones of the whole project; the book and photo sleeves. I went with the Project Life variety pack because of the variety and ease of access. There weren’t many other options and I want all of my pages to be different!

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This will be the first of three books for Colorado. I have a mental plan for them to all go together using color and pattern. I just wanted to start with the one for now. There are 230 pictures from the third trip, 175 from the second, and maybe 100 from the first… so I have a lot of sorting and deciding to do!

Next came the papers. I struggled with this because I do not like the card kits from Project Life and mamBi… They are adorbs! Don’t get me wrong. But they weren’t right for this. I needed the right colors and textures so I went for the scrap-booking paper and decided on turquoise because I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of it and green and brown for the nature effect. Gold and textures from nature as well. These will help tie the other books together that I saw.

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Next are the project life products I picked up. Now I know I just got done saying that I didn’t like any of the kits. This one I do, but it doesn’t offer enough color on its own. I like the chalkboard set. There are some nice decorative ones, phrases, and journaling ones in it. I also grabbed the Polaroid and white doodle overlays and a set with gold accents.

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The reason I made this purchase and the next is that the versatility and amount will allow me to use them for a while for many projects to come. I realized that they come out to be about 7 cents each!

Next are the me & my BIG ideas picks. I chose a pack that had some great quotes and textures for this project. The stickers are life and vacation related.

I will be able to use these for my upcoming trips! (More on that later on!)

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Then I found some stickers from  stick-abilities that have a great look and perfect phrases! Gold letters and dots for accents and phrases/words. Some fun plaques and some card stock for journaling. Also check out my washi collection! Yay!!!!

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While I’m not proud of how much I spent on this haul… I AM proud that I took the leap to get something done I have wanted to for a long time! I feel like I’ve made some great core purchases to get me started.

Resolution checklist:

  1. Fitness 5 days a week – NO check, but next on the list!
  2. Vacation and motorcycle lessons – NO check
  3. Get organized and be awesome at work – getting there, planner helps
  4. Watching finances – getting there, planner and paychecks to recover from holidays helps
  5. Create, do something with my photos, and decorate my home – GETTING THERE!!! currently under construction 😀 See folks, it’s all about forcing yourself to try something new!

Somethings I have been thinking about before getting started on this project:

  1. Many people get over whelmed with Project Life. I’m glad I am aware of this, and I have already experienced some of these feelings choosing these products. The thing is I will not stress over the details. This book is so far gone that trying to remember all of the details will be fruitless. Writing down what I can will suffice, and as memories pop up they can always be added.
  2. I have started pulling the cards that are possibilities and setting aside the ones that are out of the question. I think I will also start cutting the paper. I can see myself getting pretty consumed with the photograph part when the time comes.
  3. I will begin the scrap-booking by looking at the photographs to see if there are any moments that can be grouped together, then I will choose maybe 4 pages to work with at a time and begin arranging pictures and cards on them!

Just thoughts folks 😉

Stay tuned for Part 2!

YES… there is MORE!!! 😀

Getting Ready for College

It’s that time again! We are forced to buy some more school supplies… We’re talking books, a new printer, some clothes if necessary… those things that make you cringe to buy at first… At one point I desperately needed new work pants.

This semester I don’t have to buy a single textbook!!! HELLO open educational resources! I decided to spoil myself with a fancy planner!

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Look, it was even on clearance!

In the teacher world everyone is head over heels for Erin Condren’s teacher planners. With Hobby Lobby offering  The Happy Planner I had to grab it. It is similar in style, as in it is fun and offers super customization, but slightly more affordable… maybe?! I suppose you can spend as much as you like on them. What sold it for me is that it’s right in front of me! I don’t have to buy it online, I know what I’m getting. I can see if I like it before buying Erin Condren someday…

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I started out with the extra pocket folder add-ons, sticky notes, and two packs of stickers.

After going through it last night I can already tell I’m going to struggle with it. I was always that kid that had stickers, but never used them for a couple of reasons: 1. Once you used them they are gone and 2. Whatever you stick them on is also a commitment, you have to go with the look you are creating.

This will be a huge exercise for me in opening up my creativity. Most of you don’t know me, a few do, but I consider myself to be very creative, but I always have had biases, mental blocks, and other reasons for not stretching my skills. This will be a fun creative activity to start that will also help me keep on track with day-to-day tasks. Exercise my ability to let go and be creative!

There are some AMAZING examples on me & my BIG ideas website/blog!

Here are some of my first creations.

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A few things I have learned after sitting down with my planner:

  1. I think I will like having homework due for the week listed in the notes to the side. I haven’t yet decided how I will handle grocery lists and budget lists. I may utilize the pockets for these or use a strip of washi to tape it to the inside cover as I could go through a ton of shopping lists in a month. We will see! The pockets are proving useful for toting around extra stickers, but I’d like them to be a little more useful than that, even.
  2. Don’t get too carried away with yourself! There are endless colors of washi and stickers… If you are stuck in a rut, slow down and take time to appreciate the current month and week.
  3. BUT do plan ahead. Eventually you won’t have time to sit down and decorate every evening. You will want to do other hobbies! So do plan ahead with the decorating!

Teenage Ashley would be in HEAVEN right now if she found out that someday she was gifted a super cool planner! I had SO much fun using pink as a theme for February. I cant wait for other holidays. I will definitely be watching Hobby Lobby scrap-booking sales before diving any deeper with this. My pages are pretty blank right now, but as school starts and my work responsibilities increase I’m sure my planning will too. I was hesitant to put any of the quote stickers in for fear of covering up a time I might need, but i think i have chosen days where there will be little activity to note. Sundays are my days off, Monday will be for observations and other school things, so I think I have enough room on those days to “pencil it in” if I need to.

The excessive scrap-booking will probably eventually have to stop. I see myself being too busy as a teacher, but you never know! You just have to love the process.

What activities do you do to engage yourself creatively? Coloring books? Scrap-booking? Painting?

I’ve got BIG ideas of my own for his year… remember my resolutions? There’s something I’ve been dying to do for so long that I am FINALLY dipping my toes in! Time to rip-off that band-aid and DO WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY! 😀

I will be blogging as soon as they arrive. Hurry UP FEDEX!