Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Quilts for Kids- Week 1

I'm starting a new project! Yayyyyy!!!!!

I am thrilled to share with you my newest adventure, making a child-sized quit for the non-profit, Quilts for Kids.

With the holidays approaching, it's around this time of year ever year that I start thinking about hand-made gifts. Last year, I really put my sewing machine to good use and made some fluffy Christmas trees, rice-filled heat packs, and so much more.

And while that was fun, and friends and family enjoyed those gifts, I realized that I really wanted to make something special, for someone, somewhere this year. Even though I don't have a baby or children of my own, why not make something for someone else's child?? How fun!

Enter Quilts for Kids! I did a little web-browsing and found these guys. Their mission is...

"transforming fabrics into patchwork quilts that comfort children with life-threatening illnesses and children of abuse." (As seen on their website in the About Us section.)

How precious! I knew I wanted to be apart of what they do right then. (Reading the testimonials and tearing up also helped get me on board. The kids are just too precious!)

For $6, I had a fabric kit shipped to me (they provide all the fabric), and now I've gotten started on piecing the quilt together. Most of the fabric is already cut (praise God!) and comes with instructions. They give you 4 to 6 weeks to complete and then ship back to them.

So, here we go! I'll post my quilting progress here on the blog so you can keep up with my newest adventure!

Here are some snapshots from Week 1:

I started sewing the red and white strips together, then cut to form the small squares. By pinning the red and white fabric together, I was able to form the 4-patch square seen above.

Once I put together the red and white 4-patch squares, I sewed them to my colorful transportation squares, starting to form rows. In the above photo, I have two rows complete. I'll need to get six rows finished, before I start sewing them all together.

What do ya think?? To put it in perspective, take a look at what a completed one looks like. I'll be doing the Four Patch Pattern.

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Cubical Sweet Cubical

My home away from home is my cubical at work. Each week, I spend close to 30 hours of my life there! Why not make it cute?

Last week I spent some time re-designing my cube, so I thought I'd share with you some tips and tricks!

Here's the before....

BORING! Gosh, it looks so awful! Talk about a gray fabric prison!

And here's my after...

Ta-da! Pretty cute, huh? You can't tell in these photos, but the brown paper is actually burlap wrapping paper! See...

That's actually where I started with my design for this space- wrapping paper. Find 2 rolls that you love and cut to fit the felt or fabric walls of your cube.

From there, decide on some coordinating colors for a cute banner. For this design, I chose two dark purple and cream fabrics, and made a tassel garland. Other garland ideas include pennants, flags, or the tassels.

Once you've got your wrapping paper and banner, you are half-way there!

Here are some other must-haves for your home away from home:

  • Something green: Fake plants work great, or low-maintenance plants, like my bamboo shoot.
  • Current photos: These help remind you that you have a life outside of work! Photos of you and friends, you and your spouse, pets, family, etc work well.
  • Coffee cup: Treat yourself to a cute one! Don't just go for the generic ones in the office kitchen! Be sure to also stock up on coffee provisions (k-cups) and tea.
  • Things you love: Shop your house for art, decorations, throw pillows, etc that you already love! In my cube, I've got a Willow Tree figurine, a decorative cross, and some fabric coasters I made.
  • Cute office items: How awful are those generic black staplers?! If you can't replace them, at least hide them in a drawer! Also, take an afternoon and make yourself an adorable pencil/pen holder. Mine is a large tin can, wrapped in jute. Be sure to hang a cute calendar for yourself! 
And there you have it! I promise your office space will feel more inviting and special with a little spruce up! 

Here's some other photos for inspiration! I did this design about a year ago.

Love it!
Photo Credit: Keva Ambre

How do you make your work space beautiful?

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Monday, August 4, 2014

Summer 2014 Re-Cap

Back-to-school-week this week for teachers means our summer is officially over!

To help me savor the last bit of summer, here's a re-cap of some of my favorite moments...

Homemade cold brewed iced coffee.. nothin' better!

I turned 26! 
I had the best week-long celebration a girl could ask for!

Then we took a little Bahamas cruise!

Breakfast buffet, anyone? 

Found a few things at the thrift store

We celebrated July 4th weekend with food, friends, and fireworks!

Enjoying free hot dogs in Winter Park, on the 4th.

We throughly enjoyed World Cup this summer! 
Here's our futball star, Mueller.

On July 30th, we celebrated our 3rd anniversary

Enjoying some blackberry sangria during our anniversary dinner out!

And lastly, enjoying a beautiful beach sunrise for my sabbatical weekend away.

Although summer is pretty much over, and routines and packing lunches will soon begin, I feel so happy and grateful during this time. I love spending extra time with Daniel over the summer. 

We got to read great books, work on a few home projects, take a wonderful weekend cruise, and cook great meals for each other. 

Summer 2014, we won't forget you! 

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Sunday, August 3, 2014

First Friday Book Review - A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23

Title and Author: A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23  By: W. Phillip Keller

Release Date: 2007 (originally published in 1970)

Page Length: 176 pages

How I got the Book: Amazon

Find OnlineGoodreads Amazon ChristianBook.com

Description“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want …” Travel the shepherd’s path to the green pastures and cool, refreshing waters of Psalm 23. As a shepherd, Phillip Keller shares his insights into the life and character of sheep—and of the Good Shepherd who loves and cares for them. This beloved classic will give new meaning to the ageless Shepherd Psalm, enriching your trust in and love for the Lord who watches closely over you.

My Thoughts:
There are so many aspects of this book that I love, I don't even know where to begin! First of all, the book is short. It's a cute little paperback with 12 short chapters. It was a perfect read during my sabbatical weekend this past weekend.

Although originally written over 40 years ago, Keller's language is straight-forward and easy to read. He puts in just enough detail, which is perfect!

Technical aspects aside, I have really loved looking deeper into Psalm 23. You know how at church, a pastor will share a passage, and then break down each verse or each word with background information? Things like- what was going on historically during the time, or sharing the Greek or Hebrew equivalent word for a better understanding of it's meaning. I just love when pastors do that!

In this book, Keller shares deep insight into the life of a shepherd. He gives lots of information related to caring for sheep that David (the author of this Psalm) would have been very familiar with. Keller then ties back this knowledge of shepherding to each line of the Psalm, sharing how much God cares for us as The Great Shepherd.

For many of us, thinking about God as our Father can be a challenge. Here, we are offered an opportunity to think about God as our Shepherd. How wonderful it was to learn in this new way, that God cares for me so much, just as a shepherd cares for each of his wonderful and coveted sheep.

This book helped me refocus and remember that God will absolutely take care of my life. It is my joy to have Him care for me, and for me to follow where He leads! "The Lord... He is my Shepherd!"


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