Devin {Throwback Thursday}

Here’s a little throwback for you.  This is from when Devin was almost 2 1/2 years old.  It was such a precious time, but man am I happy to be almost through the 3s!

Devin can talk now. For a while his favorite word was “doing” (I just realized that looks like doing. As in “I’m doing the dishes.”  Think sound instead. Like, the bell went doing.). He learned this word from his Uncle Josh. Devin was driving one of those battery powered cars (not safe!). Demonstrated by him running into their propane tank. It made a sound and Uncle Josh says it went “doing”. And just like that he found a new favorite word. So this is how conversations started going at our house:

Me: What are you doing?
Devin: doing.

Or

Me:  What do you want for lunch?
Devin:  doing.

Or

Me:  I love you.
Devin: (wait for it) doing.

All kinds of fun!

His new favorite words are “what doing?” (Not the sound this time, the word). And “where going?”  Good questions except he is never satisfied with my answer because no matter what I say he just keeps asking.

Here’s a picture so you can put a sweet face to those oh-so-precious yet oh-so-annoying questions.  Which we still have, they have just changed to “Why?” And that is also a never ending question.

Devin

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Sugar Detox

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I don’t know about you, but I have a serious sweet tooth! I try not to eat too many sweets because I like to be healthy, but the holidays always do me in. So this year I decided to do a 14 day sugar detox to help me not only ween myself off of so much sugar, but also really focus on what foods I put into my body. This was my first time doing anything like this! My sweet husband willingly decided to do it with me too. I am so happy he did because it has made it a whole lot easier. Last Tuesday was our first day. The morning was hard for me because we had MOPS that day and there is always such yummy foods for breakfast at MOPS! I just kept myself busy floating around the room and talking during the eating time so I didn’t have to just sit and watch the people at my table eat! Now we are half way done and I can honestly say it hasn’t been that bad. I never felt super yucky, just a little tired and sluggish for a day or two. Not sure if that was completely from the detox or still recovering from my lack of sleep during craft weekend which was the weekend before I started. The only time that I have really had cravings and felt deprived was over the weekend. We generally eat pretty healthy throughout the week anyway and then splurge a bit more on the weekends. Also, this past weekend was my nephew’s birthday party and we didn’t get to have any of his cake! Not only are we having no sugar (other than just strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries), but we are also eating a completely paleo diet, meaning no grains of any kind. It has been challenging coming up with ideas for breakfast and lunch, but dinners have been pretty easy as we don’t eat a lot of carbs then anyway. So what have we been eating? A lot of eggs, nuts, berries, meat, all veggies except potatoes, and fruit/veggie smoothies. Although I don’t plan to stay this rigorous after the 14 days, I do plan to continue to try to eat a gluten free diet. I don’t really want to because it will take more time and thought, but I am doing it because I have every symptom of gluten intolerance and want to feel better. I have felt really great following the sugar detox plan we are on now and have learned so much about food and our bodies. Even though it is taking a little more time and effort to plan our meals and grocery shop, it is well worth it. I am hoping that by limiting ourselves to this extreme for 14 days it will make the gluten free transition a bit easier. If you are interested in the actual detox we followed you can email me and I would be happy to share more. There are several different ones out there and not all of them require you to cut out all carbs. If you have ever thought about doing one, I highly recommend it, but be prepared for the challenge and don’t give up! If you are looking for some good paleo recipes you can find a lot on Pinterest or check out this cookbook. So far I have loved it! The only downside to eating a paleo or gluten free diet is that it takes extra time. You can’t just grab pre made convenience foods, so it is not for everyone, but if you are up for it, I think it it worth trying out. I am hoping to not only make it through the 2nd week of the detox, but also to make some permanent changes with all that I have learned. I definitely plan to still splurge and eat sweets at times, but just want to be more aware of the hidden sugars in foods I eat. Wish me luck!

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The Mordecais in My Life

First, a little background on Mordecai.  Mordecai is one of the main characters in the book of Esther in the Bible.  He raised Esther after her parents died.  He helped God instill outstanding qualities in her that enabled her to stand strong when “such a time as this” was staring her in the face.  She was able to make the hard, brave choice when it mattered most partly because of Mordecai.  Our Sunday school teacher challenged us to think about the Mordecais in our life this week.

Mordecais are people that inspire you to think better thoughts, do better things, be a better person.  They encourage you to make the right choice…to do the hard thing.  Here’s a few Mordecais that I know.

The special education teacher that works hard every day to make a difference in the lives of her kids.  She deals with severe discipline issues every day.  She works hard to build her students up only to have them torn down again while they are at home.  Never giving up because she knows that she might make a difference.  Even though it’s hard and it’s almost impossible.  God can use her to make a difference to these kids, so she chooses to do the hard thing.

The stranger that took a chance on the new couple in town.  Inviting us to church and to every function she thought we might enjoy because she took the time to get to know us.  Not only did she invite us there, but she made us feel welcome when we came.  I never told her how much that changed my life.  That I have a relationship with Christ that continues to get stronger every day all because she chose to do the hard thing.

The new person in town that had the courage to start a Bible study.  She opened her home to what started out as a few women, but grew to a group so big we barely fit in her basement.  Her courage to step outside her box, brought together a group of Christian women to dig through God’s word together.  I learned what it truly meant to be sisters in Christ because she chose to do the hard thing.

Janae who has faced so many hard things all at once.  Things that would break most strong people, but she chooses to stay positive and stand on faith.  She has faced so much loss, but she trusts in God’s plan for her life and for her family’s life.  She inspires me because she chooses the hard path.

You see sometimes Mordecais give you advice when you ask.  Sometimes they give you advice when you don’t ask, but need it.   But the really good Mordecais don’t just move you by what they say, they motivate you by their actions, by the way they live their lives.  They inspire by choosing to do the hard thing.

Hard Things

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Rainbow Sun Sign {DIY}

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I am slowly in the process of fixing up my laundry room. It is one of 2 rooms in the house that we didn’t repaint when we moved in almost 2 years ago and it needs some desperate attention. I try not to spend a lot of time in there but when I do I want it to be pretty and inspirational like I try to make the rest of our home. I saw this picture somewhere (I don’t have the original source ) and knew I wanted to do something similar, but with different colors.

inspirationalsignI knew we had craft weekend coming up and it would be a perfect time to complete my project. I went prepared with all of my acrylic paints (which is a lot) because I hadn’t decided on my color scheme yet. Once I got there and was ready to start the rainbow theme just seemed perfect. What better way to brighten a room then with rainbow colors.

For this sign you will need:

  • 1×12 boards cut to the length you want your sign to be
  • scrap wood strips for the back (2×3 strips)
  • nails
  • yard stick
  • painter’s tape
  • paper plate or circular dish in the size you want for the sun circle (or math compass)
  • paint colors of your choice
  • paintbrush

I got a 1×12 board 12 ft long and cut it in half. Then I cut the two pieces down to 4ft each. I anchored them together with some wood strips nailed on the back and tacked on an extra piece for the hanger. The wood on the back was not only necessary to anchor the two pieces together, but also made the sign stick out from the wall more which I like. Think of it like a canvas that sticks out from the wall.

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Paint the entire sign the color you want your stripes to be. I did not do this first because I didn’t think of it, but I would highly recommend it to save time later. Then draw your circle for your sun. I used a paper plate as my guide. Then use a yardstick to draw straight lines coming out from your circle for the sun rays. These do not need to be exact or even as that is part of the natural look of it. Sorry I didn’t take pictures during this process, but hopefully it makes sense. After everything is drawn on, stick down 1 inch painter’s tape along each “ray” line. These will end up being your stripes between the colors. Then just start painting each stripe the color of your choice. It took two coats of paint to cover well for me so it was a bit time consuming. In the picture I am painting the lines white since I hadn’t painted the board my base color before I started.

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Once your paint is all dry you can paint on your words. I chose pretty much the same saying as what I had seen because I liked it and it seemed fitting for a laundry room. Definitely a not beautiful place and one that you have to choose to make beautiful. I chose my font and used my silhouette to cut the stencils. Black was the obvious color for my lettering as I had used so many other colors in the sign so it was the only one that would really show up. I always use stencil brushes from Hobby Lobby for this type of painting as they tend to not bleed under the stencil quite as bad.

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This project took quite a bit of time to prepare and paint, but it wasn’t difficult and I love how it turned out! Maybe now I will be motivated to paint the walls and finish my laundry room someday!

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Tassel Bracelet {diy}

Tassel Bracelet

Here’s the first project from our Craft Weekend get-away.  It was fun and easy and best of all fast.  That way I can feel like I’m getting a lot done.  I Spy DIY did an excellent post on this, so I’m not going to do a step-by-step, but here’s the basic information.

Supplies

Chain from Hobby Lobby or Michaels

Small and Large Jump rings from Hobby Lobby or Michaels

Lobster Clasp from Hobby Lobby or Michaels

Embroidery Floss from you guessed it Hobby Lobby or Michaels

The only jewelry tools you will need are round nose pliers.  You could probably do it without those too, but the jump rings are WAY easier to open with the round nose.

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First, attach the lobster clasp to the chain.  We had some small chains and some large chains.  For the large chains we needed two jump rings.  It gave just enough room to go around the large chain.

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Then, wind the floss around your pointer and ring fingers.

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Carefully pull it off and tie a separate piece of floss around the floss towards the top and cut the other end.

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Attach the tassel to the chain using the large jump ring and viola, you have a super trendy, super cute new accessory.

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