Thursday, December 29, 2011

Rustic Living in 2011

 Once again I'm left at the end of the year wondering how it could have flown by so fast! Oh yeah, probably because I was crazy busy and time flies when you're having fun! And boy was 2011 fun. In April I kicked off my Rustic Living business. I spent most of the summer in my garage with a gallon of paint, a sander, tack cloth, a cup of coffee, and my dog Whiskey by my side.

In August I decided to blog about my adventures in transforming furniture. Creating a blog has been exciting, time consuming, and a learning process. Here are a few things I've learned in just a few short months about blogging...

 1. A good camera was crucial to take my blog from "oh how cute, she paints furniture" to "I love that shade of blue and the distressing turned out great!" I use the Canon Powershot SX30 IS. Nothing fancy but gets the job done. I'm still learning a lot about what lighting furniture looks best in, how "staging" can enhance the beauty of a piece, and why tripods are a gift from the camera gods. I turn to my super talented photographing sister-in-law for advice. Just check out her Raft Media photography blog.

2. I hate taking pictures of myself. Some people are meant to model. I am not. I prefer my furniture do the modeling. Unless I feel the need to tap into my inner Farrah Fawcett I think pictures of me with my furniture or my husband and puppies will be just fine.

3. There are a LOT of super talented, beautiful, fascinating bloggers out there. Some of my favorites include Story of My Life, Miss Mustard Seed, The Shabby Nest, Alchemy Fine Living, and KateHomeLove

Blogging has also given me the opportunity to see how far I've come in painting furniture. Here are my favorite pieces/projects of 2011...

 Rustic Living was born from my FIRST project, an antique telephone bench.

 I had always wanted to refinish a rocking chair. This was my first...

 This wine rack turned bath towel holder has become one my favorite ideas for our home. I picked it up from a thrift store for $6

This is a 2 for 1. I made the photo display from the top half of an old door. The antique dresser turned out better than I expected, I love the color and knobs!

This terrible picture doesn't do this piece justice. I spent hours stripping orange and green paint from this dresser. I loved this one so much I couldn't sell it, she now sits in our bedroom.

This headboard looks wonderfully rustic in our bedroom.

I got two wood nightstands from an auction for one whole dollar. After some sea-foam green paint and a little distressing, these adorable nightstands now sit in our shabby chic guest bedroom.

Speaking of nightstands, that's exactly what I turned a couple antique folding chairs into for our bedroom.

 I feel very blessed to have been given the opportunity to start Rustic Living in 2011. I have set some exciting goals for my business in the next year and look forward to begin pursuing those in just a few days!

See you all in 2012!

For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.—James 3:16 (NIV)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Sweet Gift

I received many thoughtful gifts over the Christmas holiday and appreciate every single one, but I do want to share with all of you the beautiful handmade gift given to me by my brother and sister-in-law...

They are both so creative and talented! This gift meant a lot and is just what I needed to kick off my Rustic Living business for 2012. I'm looking forward to getting this sign up so I can take a look at it every time I start a new project.

Thank you Matthew & Audrey!


Now to him who is able to establish you by my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ ... to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.—Romans 16:25-27 (NIV)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas 2011

 Here are some images from Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, it was a very special time spent with family and friends!

Christmas Eve family picture. Twins run on my side of the family, in this picture there are THREE sets.

The boys...

The ladies... 
(obviously I get the blonde hair from my dad)

Christmas Day

Enjoying some delicious cinnamon rolls

Modeling our husbands old band shirts from high school

 Hope you all had a great Christmas!

Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness.—2 Corinthians 9:10 (NIV)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Have Yourself A Merry Christmas!

Christmas is just around the corner and I'm taking the next few days off to simply take in all the wonderful things it has to offer. Many cups of hot cocoa, heartfelt conversations with loved ones, snuggling puppies under a warm blanket, the sound of wrapping paper being ripped apart, reminiscing past Christmas', bellies full of scrumptious food, restful afternoon naps, and celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. 

My family and I wish you a very Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Thrifty Thursday

I hope you all have been enjoying this special season. Last night, the husband and I loaded the puppies into the car to go check out the beautiful Christmas lights Boise had to offer. We grabbed some pizza from one of our favorite hole-in-the-walls called Pie Hole to enjoy as we took in all the beauty. Love the simple things in life!

I also took some time out to bake some homemade doggie treats. I love to do this for my four-legged children, and I think they deserve a little something for Christmas too! It's a simple recipe, consisting of just flour, water, oats, and peanut butter. Perfectly safe and delicious, my puppies love them! Here they are about to go in the oven....

Okay on to Thrifty Thursday! I'm sure you've gotten ALL those presents wrapped and under the tree, right? Well, in case you're just a tad behind on your Santa duties I've got a few thrifty AND crafty ideas to get those presents wrapped and looking oh-so-cute...

Brown bags from your local grocery store makes great wrapping paper! I got this festive bag from WinCo. I added some cute fabric I got from a thrift store for just a couple bucks and added some twine.

Another brown bag from WinCo, this time I added ribbon I got from Michael's craft store (with a coupon of course!) Stencil adds character to names in place of Christmas tags.

This is the "classy" way to use newspaper...I picked up this galvanized tub from a thrift store for $1 and the rustic bell for just .19 cents! I then used the same fabric, twine, and ribbon from earlier...just changed it up a bit. A single sticker for the first initial of a family member is so wonderfully simple.

Instead of your typical "To and From" Christmas tags here is a way to make it more personable. I printed pictures of my family members and mod podged them onto card stock. I LOVE this.

Hope these will get you inspired if you still have some wrapping to do. If not, well I guess you can just enjoy looking at those wonderfully wrapped presents under that beautiful Christmas tree. Happy Thrifty Thursday!

Command them [the rich] to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 1Timothy 6:18 (NIV)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The lovely and super talented Kate over at Kate.Home.Love has asked me to do my FIRST guest post! This is like a Christmas gift for me, I'm so honored to have been given the opportunity. Be sure to check out my guest post and show Kate some love!

The puppies and the husband and I are going to look at the Christmas lights tonight! I love this time of year!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Button and Liebster Award!

I've been dealing with a misbehaving grab button, but I'm happy to report she is up and running! You can find my button on the right side of my blog. Please feel free to grab it and share on your blog!

I was so excited to receive a comment from Sharon over at Mrs. Hines class telling me I had received the Liebster award! This award recognizes up and coming bloggers, I'm so grateful for this!
I’m also very excited to pass the award on to 5 more up and coming blogs!

These are some very talented ladies!  Be sure to pay them a visit.  You will enjoy getting to know them.  I certainly have!

If you have been awarded the coveted Liebster award, here’s what’s next:
* choose five up and coming blogs with less than 200 followers to award
*show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.  If you not already a follower of their blog, that might be a great way to show appreciation for the award.  ;)
*Post the award on your blog.  Be sure to link back to the 5 blogs you awarded so that others can visit them.

Have a great day everyone! Got that Christmas shopping done?

[As the prophet has written:] "But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will be the shepherd of my people Israel."—Matthew 2:6 (NIV)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Momma Knows Best

First I want to say how excited I am to have my twin sister home! She has been living in Honolulu and has moved back to finish up her schooling. Thank you Santa for delivering this early Christmas gift!

I have wonderful memories of being a young girl walking around our home offering hot apple cider and cookies to people who had come to see the winter wonderland my mom had created. I loved it when she would host a Christmas Open House. I felt transported straight to Santa's workshop. You had never seen so many reindeer, elves, snowman, Christmas trees, Santa's, gingerbread men, and much more. My personal favorite was the Christmas village, complete with a blinking railroad track and ice skating rink.

My mom has MANY talents, but this time of year I'm always amazed at her gift of decking the halls. Here are some pictures to prove it....

and a quick picture of my dog and my sister's dog "sharing" a tennis ball...

 Christmas is almost here! Are you as excited as I am!?

God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.
—Galatians 4:4-5 (NIV)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Thrifty Thursday

Christmas is right around the corner! In honor of that, I've found some thrifty ways to deck your halls just in the "Saint Nick" of time. These are all inspirational ideas from other bloggers . . . click on the links for the tutorials.

Snowflake Curtains - House of Noise...I mean Boys

Glittery Monogram Tree Topper - Curb Alert!

Show these bloggers some support and check out their great ideas! Happy Thursday!


He had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people.
—Hebrews 2:17 (NIV)

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