Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Snow Fabulous

Well, I'm not very happy about it, but we had our typical March snow...AGAIN...this year. I don't know about you, but when we hit March, I DON'T WANT SNOW! I want Spring!! I want flowers and birds chirping. I want sunshine and the ability to wear a t-shirt outside. We have already had daylight savings, so it just seems right to NOT have to deal with snow.

However, last weekend we had snow. It was very short-lived which is okay by me, but explaining to a 3 year old why Frosty only "lived" for a few short hours was not very fun. She seems to finally be content with the fact that he went home to Winter Wonderland to be with his family and will join us again next year. If he comes back before then, I've got nothin! So, I just wanted to share a few pics of our March snow :)

Josh doing all the work!

While Leila Swings....

Love my boys! Had to was melting fast! Not big on the cold, but she is always ready to smile!

Kissing the boo-boo away...

I helped! A little....

The final project!


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Canvas prints on a budget...

I love the way canvas photos look! They are gorgeous! Let's be realistic though...they cost a fortune! If your anything like me, I drool over the Pottery Barn catalogues and the gorgeous canvas collages that fill the pages. Jealous that I don't have one of my own. So, I went searching. How can I create one of these collages on a budget? There are MILLIONS of craft blogs out there, and after searching for awhile, I combined a few ideas.

This is the semi-final result...


*several large print images - As most of you know, I have a very good friend who just happens to be the owner of Spirits Breeze Photography who so graciously took and ordered mine for me. If your not as lucky, you could also use SmugMug for printing - they are amazing! Don't skimp on photo printing if you are going large format. Go big or go home, that's my motto!

*layout of what you want your design to be

*large pieces of custom cut insulation foam

*enough inexpensive black fabric to "wrap" each of the pieces of foam

*spray adhesive

*staples and duct tape

*adhesive Velcro

*level and ruler

Okay, here we go...

Josh and I went to Lowes to find some inexpensive insulation foam. Some people say that the employees will cut the sizes you need, but this was not the case for us. They sent us home with two huge sheets. Josh used a razor blade to cut the sizes I had written down for him.

Once Josh cut all the pieces, I layed out the photos to make sure the fit was right...

Next up was to give the foam a canvas-y look. It was suggested NOT to try and paint the foam edges black because it would warp the foam. So, the next best thing...wrap them in inexpensive black fabric. Sort of like a present...The only part of this fabric that will show is the edge. I wanted it to sort of blend into the background but still pop on the wall.

Here I am stapling the fabric to the foam. That was easy. Notice that is a plain stapler.

I just wrapped it like a present, doing my best to insure that I got the sharpest corners possible.

I then decided to use some good old fashioned duct tape just to further secure the staples. Elegant - no. Sturdy - yes.

Next step - I sprayed heavy duty adhesive spray onto the front of each "canvas". I don't have a picture of it. But I just placed each print onto the sticky canvas and rubbed it with a very soft cloth (my t-shirt) to get it to adhere. This was really easy, too.

I forgot to take a picture of my complete, laid out design. The biggest photo I used was a 20X24. I also had a 10X20, 16X20, 20X20, a couple 8X8's and 4X6's.

Here are the large ones done!! They turned out pretty well! I can't wait to get them all done and hung on our wall!!

And...I had an audience the ENTIRE time! Bella thought she would help press the photos...

If I were to do anything different, I would probably get a little bit thicker foam, and a heavier duty spray adhesive :)


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

My Leave of Absence is Over...

2 months! I took 2 months off from my blog! A lot has been going on in my life and I really just needed to take some time to re-evaluate my priorities. I have been struggling. Struggling with the balance of life, family, career, running a household, and finding time for myself. As of lately, I have been craving at least 5 extra hours a day. I have neglected my friendships and it makes me sad. I don't have a ton of friends, but the ones I have mean the world to me and they are amazing! For so long I was in the mindset of trying to be everything to everyone—and doing a stellar job while I'm at it—that I didn't have a spare second to plug into my own needs or desires. So, through these past couple months, I have learned the following:

a. Accept imperfection
b. Share responsibility, and let go of the need to always be in control.
c. Choose my priorities
d. Open my mind to alternative ways of running things
e. Trust myself

This doesn't mean I'm not still struggling, because I am. But the above has helped the struggling become more of a friend than a foe.

So, for this Ten on Tuesday list, I am going to post 10 pictures of what you all have missed in the past few months. I hope to back date some blogs, so I will have them documented, however, I'm not promising anything. It's a fresh start from here on out :)

1. My baby turned 6! I can't believe it!! 6 sounds so old! He is such a perfect gentleman and he amazes me every day!

2. Christmas Pageants!! We had two in one week and they both did a fabulous job! Josh and I giggled the whole time at their cuteness :)

3. Christmas! We had a beautiful white Christmas. As always we missed spending it with our family, but we have started embracing our own traditions....just the four of us. It was a great day of lounging, playing with new toys, a movie, and dinner at IHOP.

4. New Years at the Meyers! This has become another tradition and it is always a good time for everyone! The kids celebrate at 9:00 and we are home in time to put them to bed and celebrate with each other at Midnight! This year was a little crazy since the day started out at 65 degrees and a tornado swept through the town of Fenton, where we live. Both the kids' schools were hit. It is such a blessing that they were not there! Definitely a New Years we will never forget!!

5. Lots of Soccer! After about 5 sessions of soccer, Malakai has finally picked up an understanding of the game and stopped flying around the field like an airplane. He has even began scoring goals! It is awesome to watch his growth in the sport :) Leila is quite the fan of his also!!

6. Crafts! We have had a FREEZING weather! Which means we have had to be creative with the indoor activities. Leila could do crafts 24 hrs a day!

7. A weekend with Baby Liam!! Kaci, Mallory, Liam, Abbie, and Shelby came down for a weekend and we had such a good time! I loved having so much family around for an entire weekend! My kids LOVE Liam and they were very sad to see him go!

8. Grandparents Day! Malakai had Grandparents Day at school! Unfortunately there was horrible weather across the state of Missouri and Maw Maw Miller was unable to make it. We were lucky enough that Poppy came down the beginning of the week so the nasty weather wasn't an issue.

9. P90X! Josh and I are on day 27 of P90X! It has SUCKED every step of the way! I think our main motivation is that we have yet to personally meet anyone who has completed the 90 days. Everyone we know owns it though. I know why they have never finished! An hour a day is A LOT! We get up at 5am...we didn't even talk for the entire first week because we were both so crabby. Along with the workout we are doing the diet and it has been a HUGE change! Protein Shakes, recovery drinks...we go through 4 jugs of egg-whites a week. It's brutal! But, we vowed to do it together, and we are committed to finishing. No pictures yet...the day 1 pics are horrible! If the day 30, 60, or 90 turn out amazing, then I will post. Ha Ha!

10. I guess that is about it...I look forward to being back in the game of blogging. I have missed catching up on what has been going on in the lives of all my blog family!