Tuesday, June 29, 2010

New Orleans, Louisiana

While Rich stayed home to work and Ryan stayed home to attend summer school, the rest of us headed to Missouri to stay the night at my parents house. Monday morning, we awoke at 5:20 am to head to the airport to pick up our rental van.  It was quite disastrous, but 45 minutes later we were on our way to pick up the rest of the crew (not in the passenger van we originally rented but we survived).  What originally started out as a 30+ crew of family, ended up being 10.  Because of the oil spill scare, our numbers dropped over the months as we were planning out our trip.  We took this exact trip 11 years ago and decided it was time for another one.  I'm so glad our family gets along so well!

Our first day of sight seeing was spent in New Orleans.  The temp was in the high 90's with a heat index of 110.  What a scorcher!  We had yet to experience that type of heat back in Oklahoma.  Every time I would walk out of a store, my camera lens would fog up.  It was miserably hot and oh so humid, but everyone enjoyed themselves none the less with not much complaining.

Lil' guy doing a little sightseeing...

We wanted to ride the trolley, but there were so many things we wanted to do and see.  It was hard to fit it all into one day.

So neat how the street names were "set in stone".  Robbie cheesing it up for the camera.

It started to rain and all these artists took off running for cover.  I thought it was interesting that they just left their art in the rain, not even taking a single canvas with them.

We ate lunch at River's Edge.  It was very good.  See the steam on my lens?

I've always thought New Orleans is one of the prettiest cities I've ever been to.  The exception to that being Mardi Gras.  It's amazing how nasty, stinky, yucky, and dirty that city becomes with the trash lined streets (and balconies).

Robbie posing outside of Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville.

No trip to New Orleans is ever complete without a stroll through the French Market.

Jackson Square is home to the St. Louis Cathedral.  Established as a parish in 1720, it is the oldest cathedral in continual use in the US.

One last picture to share...

We had a wonderful time exploring a beautiful city.  I'm grateful that I was able to share this experience with my sisters, my mom, and my kids.

Friday, June 25, 2010

We have a winner!

Well I could ramble on about this forever.... but I won't!  Instead I will just say how much I enjoyed my first giveaway!  Thank you all so much for your kind words and sweet blog love!  I've heard it said over and over again how the one that is giving away says she wishes she could give something to each and every one that entered.  I always think "Yeah right, then share the love."  Haha!  But now I understand!!  I truly wish I could send each of you something.  Since I can't send something to all your mailboxes, I will send you best wishes for my next giveaway!  I've been working on it and I'm really excited about it too!  So be on the lookout in a few weeks for my next color giveaway.  I think you might like it... I hope anyway!

I used http://www.random.org/ to select the winner.  That was quick!  I was hoping to see it fumble through some numbers then slowly come up with the winning number.  Nothing like anticipation, you know what I mean?  But no, it was boring and popped it right up there.  No fun at all.

...And the winner is #45!!  YAH Lara over at Colonial Homestead!!!  Go show Lara some love!  She is a relatively new blogger with only being around since March.  Lara also has a selling blog called Colonial Homestead Creations that she just opened.  Congratulations Lara!

Thanks so much girls!  I appreciate all the new followers I gained!  What fun this is!  I'm so behind on reading my friends' blogs... I'll be over to meet each of you new girls soon.  Thanks and have a delightful weekend!  =]

Lara, on my blog page under the About Me section is "View my complete profile".  Click on it.  On the left side under Contact, click on email.  Send me an email with your address and I'll get this mailed out to you on Monday.  I can't wait for you to get it.  I hope you like it!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Americana decorating

I just wanted to share some of my Americana with you.  I've really enjoyed looking at all of yours!

The people we bought our home from left some things for us to "throw away".  They left this sign, can you believe it?  I haven't moved it yet but will when I paint.

Even my Amish dolls celebrate freedom.

I just love old architectural stars, don't you?

My year round holiday tree dressed in red, white, and blue.

On the hutch...

In the family room on my dad's old rake...

Out off all the decorating I did, this is my husband's favorite.  Really?  So simple, probably because that is his grandmother's old mirror.

Beautiful sign made by Jody over at Star Spangled Pretties.  It is patiently sitting on my pew bench (that came from the church I grew up in) until I paint the living room walls this fall.

Some of the giveaway winnings from Maria over at AMB Primitives along with 2 of the 3 star candleholders that will get some grubby candles, cheesecloth and of course homespun.  The bench is again patiently waiting the living room makeover.  I'm pretty sure I'm going to paint a flag on top of this bench (also left by our previous owners to throw away.  Yeah, right!).

Just a small display on the mantel.  I'm just a little bothered by the fact that when I light the candles, the blue glass star turns to purple.  Geez!

Lastly, this box became the catch-all for leftovers.  I didn't know what to do with this stuff so I sat it in the box and left it on the counter.  The next morning I was looking at it and actually liked how it was all just thrown in there.  So I added some homespun and a linen towel under it.

One of my favorite pieces is this old Flag Etiquette pamphlet.  I salvaged it from my great-uncle and aunt's home.  I wish I knew how old it is.

Well, that's all I have to share with you today.  Don't forget to sign up for my Mustard and Black giveaway!  Remember you must only sign up on that post.  If you sign up on any other post, you won't be counted.  I'm so excited!  I can't wait to see who wins!  Only two more days!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Yep... more winnings!

Isn't this the cutest wall pocket you've ever seen?  I just love it so much!  I won it from Brenda over at The Rusty Thimble.  It is so much more adorable in person!  I thought one of the tags fell off then I realized she added another tag so I can chose which one I want to use.  How clever!  The sweet annie smells so good!!  It's current home will be on the hall bench until I work in my family room where it will end up.  That's the room that has all the things that remind of us our loving families.  I love the Grandma's Garden tag and it does remind me of the beautiful flowers both of my grandma's grew.  Please go visit Brenda.  She does wonderful work, her hands are always busy and she has lots of neat things she makes.  She's also having another giveaway!  Thank you Brenda!

I told you that I just keep getting blessed with winning!  I won one of BeCca's Folk Art From The Harbor awesome stencils!!  I'm so glad this is my last week of work so I can have time to play around!  Signs and game boards are at the top of my list to make.  I so can't wait!  BeCca creates her own stencils!  Not only does she have a huge variety, but her prices are just right.  Go check out her many designs available, I'm sure you'll find a couple (hundred) you'll like!  =]  She's also having another giveaway!  I tried to take a picture of the stencil but since it's clear... well you know.  I'll show you a finished picture one of these days.  This is the pic she had on her blog.  Isn't it an awesome stencil?  I'm so excited about playing with it!  Thank you BeCca!

Another package I received in the mail came from another talented blogger.  I bought some ditty bags from Beryl over at Southern Blessings.  They are prim wonderful!!  Like Brenda, she is very creative and has her hands making something all the time.  Before I even opened the package I could smell a lovely mixture of vanilla and cinnamon.  Mmm... good!  They go well with my Amish bonnets and dress.  Go visit Beryl and see all her delightful creations.  I just popped on her blog and she's having a giveaway right now.  You don't want to miss it, it's primtastic!  Thank you Beryl!

I'm so excited that I have one more day of work and then I will be a full-time stay at home mom to three busy, fun-loving kids!  Working for Hobby Lobby since October 1991 has been an adventure.  I will truly miss that place and the people, but mostly that discount!  Hee hee!  It has been so much fun to see all the new stuff first hand, get first dibs on the newly marked down items.  I work in the seasonal department so we've been working on getting some fall things out to you all.  Christmas trees were shipped to us in April and went straight to our warehouse thank goodness!  But that Christmas is rolling in like crazy now.  I picked a good time to leave!  Haha!  Christmas picks, ribbon and crafts are getting ready to hit the shelves.  Ah yes, fun times indeed!  I'm glad that I will finally get to focus more on my family and more on my prims and of course, more on my blog (and more giveaways)!  =]

Oh, I almost forgot to mention another package that was waiting for me when I came home from vacation.  My husband stayed home to work and took care of our oldest who had to stay for summer school (hope he is learning his lesson). They went shopping for my birthday while I was gone.  When I walked in the door, sitting there on the table was a good sized box.  I was trying to remember what else I won or bought.  Lol!  Then I looked a little closer and realized it was a laptop!!!  YAH ME!!  So now I blog while doing laundry, blog while doing dishes, blog in-between vacuuming.  It is so awesome!!!!  I can be on the computer and get chores done.  I didn't realize how much sitting at a desktop computer confined you to one area.  I know, I'm behind the times.  Lol!  I'm so excited!

As you can tell, it's been a great week for me.  I'm thankful for all you wonderful prim friends.  I just love you guys!  =]  If you haven't signed up for my Mustard and Black giveaway, you better get over to that post and get it done!  Don't enter on this post.  Sorry, it won't count if you do.

Have a delightful week prims!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

One more day to go...

Well, I finally did it.  I turned in my two week's notice before I went on vacation.  Thursday will be my last day of work.  It is so bittersweet for me!  I've been waiting for this day for so long.  Yet when I walked through those doors today, I just wanted to cry!  Throughout the day, I would look around and see things that would make me so sad about finally leaving that place.  Then I would turn the corner and see something that would make me so thankful I'll be gone.  Haha!  It was such a crazy whirlwind of emotions!

I have only had two real jobs in my life.  The first being McDonald's.  I was with them for 5 years before working for Hobby Lobby.  Cheesy, I know.  But that's what I did.  I started working for Hobby Lobby in October 1991 in Springfield, MO.  We were store #32, the first store in Missouri.  At that time, Hobby Lobby was only in three states:  Oklahoma, Texas, and Arkansas.  Since then, we've grown to our current 447 stores in 37 states.  

In an economy where so many are closing their doors, our founder and CEO David Green remains on the Forbes list of wealthiest people for the 5th year in a row.  He is currently #123 on Forbes "400 Richest Americans".  Also, he is currently #316 on Forbes list of "The World's Billionaires".  What makes his story so interesting though is his humble beginnings.  David was the son of a poor preacher who worked at the local 5-and-dime store in high school.  He started making frames in his garage with a $600 loan he took out in 1970.

What is so impressive of David Green is not his rank on a list of wealthy people in this world, but his current work philosophy.  The company has no long-term debt.  David believes the way to good business is to follow biblical principles: "God is the only one who knows the future."  Hobby Lobby plays Christian music in all the stores.  David has delivered over 420 million copies of the Gospel to children in 100 countries through Book of Hope ministry.  I just wanted to share some of his stats with you.

It's not quite 19 years for me because each time I had a child, I took off work for awhile.  When I would go back to work each time, I had to start all over again.  I would lose all my time and seniority.  But that's okay because my kids were worth it.  I just can not even believe I will finally have the title of SAHM!  Right now I have mixed emotions about it because I truly love working for Hobby Lobby yet I truly desire to be available 24/7 to my family.

I'll admit it.  I'm nervous.  I'm anxious.  I'm excited.  I'm starting a new chapter, a new season in my life.  Am I ready for the challenges?  Yep.  I know God will be with me every single step of the way!  I'm grateful for His presence to guide me along this new path.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Thank You!!

Wow!  You girls know how to make a prim gal feel good!!  With this being my first giveaway, I was really afraid no one would want my re-dos.  I assumed people would want real hand mades instead.  Thanks so much for all the sweet comments!  I am overwhelmed at the response so far on my giveaway!  Thanks for all that have entered and thanks for spreading the word!!  I appreciate your support!

Please make sure I can reach you if you win or keep an eye on my blog for the winning post.  There is one or two that I don't know how I will get a hold of you if you win.

I am having such a wonderful time on vacation at the beach!  But I still can't wait to get home and visit all my new friends and get caught up on my regular friends.

Have a wonderful rest of the week~

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Mustard and Black giveaway!

It's finally here!  =]

I hope you want to enter my Mustard and Black giveaway!  I have been blessed beyond belief to be the recipient of soooo many giveaways.  Some of you gals wonder how I'm so lucky to win so many times.  I really don't know.  I just know that God loves to bless me even though I don't deserve it!  So in return... I'm finally going to have my first (of many to come) giveaway!

Also this month is a month of celebration for me so that makes it another great reason to have a giveaway.  My last day of work is this month and so is my birthday!  So I'm going to celebrate and party all month long!!  =]

Included in this giveaway is a mustard wooden shelf re-do from the thrift store that stands 17" tall and is 13" across.  The black wire basket is a thrift store re-do that stands 9.5" tall and is 6.5" across.  I added some homespun, tea-dyed muslin and cheesecloth and a rusty star to it.  I threw some mustard and black rag balls in the basket.  The metal scoop is a thrift store re-do with a piece of tea-dyed cheesecloth hanging on the handle.  It is 6.5" across and stands 5" tall.  The mustard wooden cubby is a re-do that I bought many years ago at Hobby Lobby.  It is 8.5" across and stands 4.75" tall.  The small runner is 12" x 18" and was bought at Silver Dollar City this year.  It was the inspiration for the "Mustard and Black" giveaway.  The rusty heart garland is 7.5 feet long with 3/4" hearts on it.  I don't know if you can see it that well in the picture.  I tried to drape it throughout.

Because I have to enforce rules all year long with my children... I am only having ONE rule for this giveaway.  You must enter this giveaway on this post only.  If you try to enter on a different post, it will not be counted!  This giveaway is open to all my prim friends all over the world.  That's it!  I will be drawing a name on Friday, June 25.  Oh, if you want to add it to your blog, that's awesome.  But I want to keep it simple, so there will only be one entry per person.

I'm really excited to be giving back what's been given to me.  I'm REALLY excited to become a stay at home mom so I can spend more time with my family, but also spend lots more time creating!  I'm already working on my next giveaway.  So if you don't like mustard and black, maybe you'll like the next color giveaway.  How fun this is!  =]