Thursday, February 11, 2016

Office/Family Room Make Over

If you've followed my blog for very long, you know what my office/family room looks like. It's the room with all the bookshelves that I used as a backdrop for photos.

These are from 2012. You can see that there's a cabinet, two bookcases of books, a bookcase of games and a game table in the room.

I donated a couple of hundred books to a fund raiser and moved the rest to my closet. We folded up the ping pong table and replaced it with a card table for games. This was at Thanksgiving. Then I didn't do much else.

There's nothing wrong with bookcases and cabinets all around the room, but I've always wanted a couch and a table in the room so we could all work on projects, homework, music, writing together.

I bought this. And added our initial.



This started out as a plain frame and burlap. I painted the letters, glued them onto the material and added the flowers. It took me a while to figure out what I wanted on my walls. I wanted either something about dreams or something about your mountain is waiting. If Felicia of  Stare If You Must was here, she could have painted a mountain across the whole wall for me. But since she's not, I went with this.

The cork board will hold my book timeline. I was very tempted to put a clothesline across the wall for the timeline. I even have cute painted clothespins, but for now I'm using the cork board.
I bought a plain wooden crate and painted it. It's now a book box.


I got my couch and coffee table, and the books are sitting on an ottoman.

I bought "believe" and "family" unfinished and painted them. All the kids signed the family board. I took all but three of the photos on this wall. I have six news ones to go up.

These are all from portrait studios. I think mine are more interesting :)

It's taken me so long to write this blog post that I have the new pictures up. There is one empty frame at the top right. I am missing both Jeff and River from the wall.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Fourteen Days of Kindness

Sometimes life gets gloomy by February. The holidays are past. The bills are pouring in. Winter is getting long. So we kick off February with a week of kindness. Or this year, fourteen days of kindness. We make things for other people.

The first day we make taco soup for the lunch ladies at Kaleb's school and for Rick's coworkers. You can find the recipe here



We also made trail mix, almond bark covered pretzels and marshmallows.



The kids also made homemade cards to go with the treats.





 We didn't just make treats, the kids made some crafts too.

You can see more of what we are doing by following the above link to the other blog.

You can see the first time we did week of kindness hereherehere and here

We've been working on this for almost a month. During that time I've also been redoing my "office"/family room. I'll show what I did once my couch arrives.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Exploring Florida #1

A few years ago we started driving to nearby parks and springs to discover new places. Then life got complicated. We had Saturday sports, there were behavior issues, the older kids started working. So we just kept returning to our favorite two or three places.

A few weeks ago we started talking about trying to visit some new places up to 3 or 4 hours from us. This Saturday we did our first day of "exploring" Florida. We actually went back to a state park we had visited in 2010. It's called Falling Waters, but when we went in 2010 we went in the fall. There had been much rain, so there was no waterfall to see. It was very disappointing.

Only four of us went on Saturday, but there was a waterfall. Here are a few pictures. I used this opportunity to practice shooting manual on my camera. Some are auto though.

The biggest thing about the pictures is that it's winter, so there is not much color. I had hoped for much more vibrant pictures.













Anyone know what kind of bird this is?

Or this bird?










There are sinkholes over 100 feet deep.



Next up: Fort Walton

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Photo Class week 2

Friday Jessica and I had our second location photography class. That means we go somewhere either local or up to 90 minutes away to take photos. This week we went by the house on the way to our destination, so I stopped and picked up Tyler. Kaleb was just getting home so I took him too. I texted Adam and he met us there also. Later Rick joined us on the way home with Jasmine. Only Kayla didn't get home soon enough to join us.

Here are a few of the photos I took of the kids.








Jessica took this.







We were really supposed to be shooting pictures of the trees, shrubs etc. But I prefer people. I took a lot of photos of my classmates, but I'm not posting them because I don't have permission. They don't even know I took them yet :)










I am going to be ordering an 8x10 of Adam and of Kaleb for my wall. I don't have new ones of either of them. Which should I choose.