Grace On Rainbow

Friday, July 9, 2010

Amazing Scary Hair

Bob was off yesterday so we could complete our CPR/First Aid Training - so we decided to take the kids to the Discovery Center. This has to be one of the funniest things there. Avery's hair was perfect for it.

Have a great morning everyone -Lisa

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Simplify . . . A Month Long Endeavor

This year has been overwhelming to say the least. We have been busier than I have ever remembered before. There have been so many changes and decision we made and are making that sometimes I forget to just stop and listen for the voice of God.

This past Spring we were in the house hunting mood, more so than ever before. We search and looked and looked and searched (we have to be the oldest clients our poor Realtor has ever had). She is amazing and has worked with us faithfully for 5 years - yes I said 5 years. We went through a stage were we were ready to build our dream house - we looked at land, met with a builder, looked at blue prints, got estimates . . . and then decided that we really didn't want the stress of building with everything else going on in our lives . . . so we started looking again. . . and looking . . . and looking. We found a house, not exactly what we wanted, but for the most part it fit the bill (over 5000 square feet, a bonus room above the 3 car garage, a full finished basement, a formal dining room, large kitchen, deck, 3 acres) - we got our preapproval, checked taxes, called the Realtor to make an offer . . . and prayed. The Realtor called back to let us know that 3 other offers had been made on the house - so we had a decision to make (pray . . . pray . . . pray) and that is when God began to work in our hearts once again. Could we afford the house . . . sure we could make the monthly payments for the next 15 years - was the house what we wanted . . . we thought so, but there was still something there that was holding us back. We called the Realtor and let her know that we would not be making an offer - why? - because in our hearts we knew that God was telling us that this was not the plan He had for us. You see we have been working on being debt free - completely debt free - no mortgage. . . nothing. This house would not allow us to be debt free - we knew it and God knew it. So I prayed for contentment with the house that He had provided us with. I knew we needed to change some things to simplify and to reorganize - so that is what I began doing and a month later I am thankful for His wondrous grace and mercy.

If you know anything about both Bob and I - you know that clutter and disorganization does not lead to a "harmonious" life for either one of us. We just do not do well when things are all out-of-sorts.

Yet here we are enduring through the organizing, shuffling, and purging of stuff.

No area was safe - if it was flat it was piled high.

But I KNEW that the end result would be worth it . . . or that is what I was praying.

And three weeks later - with much tears and sweat things started to come together.

and I began remembering why I was doing this.

I truly thought that my poor husband was just about ready to disown me after this round of revamping, but like the wonderful husband he is - he was patient and encouaged me to stay on track and get one project done at a time (which seems like an impossibility for me) but it was more than just cleaning - it was more than just organizing - it was more than just purging - I yearned for a simpler life. We had lost our focus lately and I wanted to prove to myself and in truth to God that I was TRULY happy living in our HOME! . . . and guess what. . . I truly am.

Do I think that we will stay in this house forever - no I don't believe that, but I do know now that instead of looking for our "dream home" - I need to search for the home that God has called us to.

But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity. Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Notwithstanding ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my affliction.
Philipians 4:10-14

Simplify . . . Craft/School Room

Here is our front living room . . . it is a room that I liked, but it just didn't get much use. We hardly ever sat in here just because our back living room is our "comfy" room. Even when we have people over - we sit in the back room. So I decided to make it more user friendly for our family. I listed the furniture on Craigslist - even through it was almost 10 years old, it was in perfect condition because we didn't use it. Next came organizing it into my craft/sewing room and the kids school room. We have these great desks for the kids that my mom and dad found at a sale, but they were in the dining room and since we lost 2 of the windows when we added on the back room, everything just seemed so "dim". I really wanted to open up the front room and have the kids' desks in here where there is lots of sunshine and light.

So I brought the other white cabinet back in from the laundry room and decided to have one be for all my "sewing" things . . . I measured and found Rubbermaid containers that fit perfectly into the space. I didn't just want to stack my fabric because the cabinets are so deep that I would have to take all the fabric out from the front just to get to the back - this way all I have to do it pull the bin of fabric out that I want and then put it back in without having to rearrange all the other fabric.

I made the other white cabinet all my "crafty" supplies. I want to start scrapbooking again and this way I have everything in one area and I don't have to hunt through bins to find what I am looking for.

Next I wanted to find something for our shoes. I didn't want to just have them laying out all over the floor - so I found this storage shelf at Hobby Lobby and it worked perfect for our shoes.

The next thing was a sewing table - this is just a 6 foot folding table, which I am not that crazy about, but for now it is working. I sewed a table skirt in 4 different sections so that I could slide my chair in and reach my foot pedal. I also like the fact that underneath the table I have my scrap bin of fabric, a bin for my yarn, and the large roll of batting that I got from my Mom - so even though I don't like the table itself, I love the storage that it gives me.

I have also had this quilt rack that my brother-in-law made me a few years ago out of a cherry tree we cut down in our front yard. I never really had a good place to put it so it has just sat in our back closet. Then as I was looking for what to do with the space above the table I remembered that I had it and it worked great and it really added so much to that wall. The words above the rack say "Everyday holds a possibility of a Miracle" - which I love especially since the kids are now in this room with me.

Of course I had to redo the piano bench to match the table skirt and then buy new rugs for the piano and my cutting area (burgundy just didn't go too well anymore).

If you know anything about my house - you know that it is 99.9999% decorated in Hobby Lobby things. I just LOVE Hobby Lobby (sometimes a little too much). But they have the cutest things and with the sales that they run, I cannot find things any cheaper even at Wal-Mart. This is the top of one of my white cabinets. I found the metal bird cages at HB for 50% off and the sign for 50% off. The candles were just white candles from Wal-Mart that I tied some black ribbon around and added some bows.

We don't ever use the fireplace anymore, but I still love the look that it brings to the room. A few years ago I found the metal "Pennsylvania Ave" sign and thought it was quite fitting for this Pennsylvania native.

This is my cutting/ironing station. It is actually the two white cabinets I had at the end of my sewing table from before butted up back to back. The only problem was now there was a gap down the middle so I want to Wal-Mart found some caulking strip that you would use in the bathroom and cut a piece for both sides - gap gone - problem solved. I also hung the 3M pull-away hooks on both sides. This side holds my medium cutting mat and the other side holds all of my rulers.

I now LOVE our much more simpler craft/sewing/school room.

Have a wonderful day everyone - Lisa

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Simplify - Bedroom Face Lift

Well with the kiddos gone to Aunt Kris and Uncle Bill's house and Bob gone for the week for work I decided that I wanted to tackle our bedroom. It's not that I didn't like it - I was just in the mood for something more modern - a little more simple - and a little less frilly. I hadn't started spring cleaning yet because I knew that once I got started I wanted to do a lot more than just wash everything down.

Here is how I had the room decorated before. I still love this quilt set that I bought in Branson a few years ago so I put in my hope chest to pull out when I get back in the mood for a more "frilly" look.

This however has never been a point of "love" for me - I actually have learned to despise glass doors - from "trying" to clean them to praying that no one will slip and fall through them. So what does one do when they have had enough of glass shower doors . . . you take them out of course. Now mind you I did "Google" this first so I had a pretty good idea of what I was getting myself into. I believe my dear husband will very soon be revoking my "Google" rights as it has led to more than one home improvement project for me.

Ahh . . . much better

Now the next thing I did not "love" in our tiny bathroom was the "oak" storage cabinet behind the toilet. With our bathroom being so small, I really needed to keep the storage space so I wondered if I could paint it . . . off to "Google" again and of course you can - I have found out that you can paint almost anything.

So out with the cabinet and on with primer and paint.

But wait why stop there - I also did not like the vanity and medicine cabinet . . . so out with them as well and on with primer and paint. So after a week of priming, painting, scrapping, scrubbing, bleaching and Google-ing here is our Simplified bathroom

I ended up painting the cabinets black and then sanding the edges to distress them. I found this beautiful shower curtain at Wal-Mart (sorry the picture is a little blurry) and it worked perfect with the room.

Next I redecorated the dressers . . .

my poor husband thinks there has been a greenery explosion in our house . . .

I found this great metal art at Gordman's and then put vinyl letters over the top
"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength". . . one of my goals was to have writing (either scripture or words of encouragement in every room of our house) - I think I am almost there.

And finally here is a look at the room now - Bedspread was from Target. Pillows, curtains, and rug were from Wal-Mart. I can honestly say that I LOVE our new simplified bedroom.

Have a wonderful day everyone - Lisa

Jr. Camp and A Lot Of Prayer

This is how I love it . . . all of us together, but this week would be different. You, my son, would be going to camp for the first time and would be an hour away for entire week.

I knew that you would be in good hands with Mr. Dennis and Mr. Matt, but still it did not make it any easier saying good-bye Monday morning.

I watched as you stayed close to your Daddy. I knew that you were just as apprehensive as I was, but you are SO strong and I am so proud that you did not let your "nervousness" stop you from seeing what God had for you.

Vans all packed and I am realizing just how real this is - that in just a few minutes I will be releasing you further out in the world than I ever have before, and I can no longer hold back the tears.

With everyone here - you go inside and pray as a group and I pray yet another prayer for you and the counselors.

On Wednesday, Aunt Dani and I drive down to see you and Shelby. I got there just in time to watch you play kick ball.

I absolutely love watching you having fun and enjoying the days that God has given you.

You were never embarrassed to stop and wave the "I Love You" sign or blow me a kiss. Thank you for that - you will never know how much those things mean to me.

This was my first time seeing Camp Sagmount and it really was a beautiful place. Of course I already knew where your favorite place would be - the lake, fishing for whatever would nibble on your hook.

I can never tell you just how much joy you bring to my life. You are an incredible testimony of God's goodness - you bring such light into this world that I have no doubt that you will grow to accomplish amazing things for God.

and even though you were SO tired and were a little homesick - you stuck it out and we both made it through. I don't know if you will ever go to camp again, but I do know this - I am blessed not just because I am your mother, but I am blessed because I know you and the overwhelming love in your heart. I am so proud of the young man you are growing to be even when it is SO hard for me to let you go I always know that you will put God first in the decisions you make. I love you my sweet boy and I thank God for you more every day.

Love - Mom