Printing Press Shadowbox (Week 46)

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20141002-173944-63584570.jpgThe weeks grow closer to my delivery date! I’ve had a crazy, unseasonably difficult past few months; but finally, finally the “nesting” spirit (that I was feeling guilty for not experiencing!) has surfaced. I’m finding so much peace sitting in my son’s nursery, washing soon-to-be worn onesies, & yes, decorating his space with a creative touch.

This week’s creative project: Printing Press Shadowbox

My husband & I were at a craft/flea market recently & met a vendor selling printing press letters & boxes. We meticulously selected letters to spell our future baby boy’s name, Asher, & just the right box to match.

20141002-175301-64381553.jpg As is, the letters were a bit difficult to read. So I used some white stamp ink to enhance readability. Up on the nursery wall it goes!

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Balsamic & Andouille Vinaigrette (Week 45)

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Last summer I discovered a wonderful flavor at a seaside restaurant. It was a spinach salad topped with andouille sausage, balsamic, & a few choice additions. An odd combination, right? But SO tasty.

When I returned home, I hungrily searched for a recipe & found one.

This week’s creative project: Spinach salad with Balsamic & Andouille Vinaigrette

I followed this recipe, making a few changes*. It’s a quick & hearty meal or starter, great for both warm & cool weather. We enjoyed this salad at home, accompanied by some cheese, bread, & white grapes.

Bon appetit!

*My recipe changes:
-used half the olive oil
-left off the red onions
-added toasted pine nuts
-topped with crumbled goat cheese rather than formed cheese balls

Le Petit Prince, Pt. 2 (Week 44)

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Now for COLOR! Ready to get my little boy’s first piece of art on the wall, I added some simple colors to my rendition of a print from the children’s story Le Petit Prince (the colors I chose were guided closely by the colors used by the author).

This week’s creative project: Adding color to & framing drawing

First, I traced my drawing with a fine, grey marker for distinction.

Next, for color I chose watercolor pencils as the medium–easy to control & offer bright tones. After scribbling in various colors, I simply blended them with a slightly wet paintbrush–giving the appearance of watercolor.

I included a tender inscription to my son on the back of the print. Maybe he’ll find it someday 🙂

Lastly, I recycled a frame we were no longer using & framed the print. Up on the wall it went… The very first wall art to be hung in my son’s nursery 🙂

Le Petit Prince, Pt. 1 (Week 43)

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Take one favorite children’s story, add some transparency film, plus one projector & you’ve got one unique print for an up & coming nursery!

This week’s creative project: Projection print art

I love the French children’s novel Le Petit Prince by Antoine de St. Exupery. Filled with simple yet imaginative drawings, I thought a rendition of one would be a sweet addition to my son’s nursery. I was fortunate to find a used projector at Goodwill for a mere $12. After a quick project of tracing the image onto transparent paper, I then projected it onto a broad matte board.

Coming up next week… I’ll add some minimal color & frame it!

Table Rehab (Week 42)

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20140908-100051-36051405.jpgThis cool tri-level table was a cheap purchase at a Nashville Flea Market nearly a year ago. Such a fun find…yet it has been sitting, unused in my garage collecting dust, cobwebs, & generally looking depressed. ‘Twas a $25 impulse buy with no plan, ok I admit it!

But all cute flea market finds do eventually find their place. Last week, my boss mentioned an interest in revamping our lobby at work to showcase fun retail….but we needed more tables. Et voila! I offered my tri-level table & set out on a plan to improve its appearance.

This week’s creative project: Table painting with accents

I chose a dark espresso brown as the base (better to highlight the retail items that will fill it later). Then, to add some interest, I used a light mint green for accents on the detailed edges. A quick job & fun too. (It helped that each level detached for easier painting!)

I’m excited to take the table to work this week & help it find a place in the world at long last!

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What’s In a Shelf? (Week 41)

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20140827-203023-73823500.jpg I have always loved a well-stocked, balanced & interesting bookshelf. My sister is a talented potter & I have collected some lovely ceramic pieces of hers through the years. But sadly, most of these were displayed in a dark shelf in a back room. Until now!

This week’s creative project: Bookshelf Update

I wanted to add some interest to my front room book cabinet, an antique china cabinet passed on to me from my folks. So, I made some room–pulling out books we haven’t or won’t read–& carefully displayed many of my sister’s pottery pieces among the treasured titles that now remain. I’m so happy with the shelves, which now offer me a sweet view of my sister’s handiwork.

A Little “Shelf” Care (Week 40)

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photo 1(1)In the spirit of nesting (which has just started happening for me at 26 weeks pregnant), I am spending a lot of time in my baby’s nursery. For months on end there was little agreement about colors and styles, and just in the last few weeks, my husband and I have been piecing it together, and I’m so pleased with how it’s coming along.

Fast forward to this week… I found myself unexpectedly bombarded with triggers and old messages from the past. Messages that haven’t whispered in my ear in many, many months. I began to isolate from my husband, build anger and hurt feelings. Imagine a threatening future. My old routine.

After some hard honesty with my husband about my feelings, we spent some time in prayer together. I didn’t instantly feel better, I felt broken. And I still wanted to sit in my pain place and continue to isolate and hold onto the sad, scared feelings–a familiar place but one that I knew was not based in my reality today.

But despite my stubborn spirit, I put one foot in front of the other and tried the good ole 12-Step mantra, “act as if.” My husband and I began a cheerful project together for the baby’s room.photo 2(1)

This week’s creative project: Revamping an Old Shelf

Through the work, we combined our ideas, allowed each other to help, and slowly but surely, by the end of the project, I was laughing and smiling. After 20 months in recovery, I still need a push in the right direction, and often that direction generally involves pulling my feet out of the swamp and taking a muddy, baby step toward self-care and fellowship.