shan

shan

Tuesday, March 26, 2013





Vacation


So this week we are "on vacation." Really all that means is my husband took time off work, to work on the house. Usually after such "vacations" he's often looking forward to returning to work. If yesterday was any indication though, I think this time, we just might get some rest.
Weather wise, this week is not ideal for the outdoor projects he had planned. Outdoor projects happens to be the bulk of our projects, all manual labor, and the reason he took the week off. He's kinda happy he dodged that bullet, but it leaves us with a dilemma: what to do???...
I feel terrible saying it, because it's such a good problem to have, but we don't know how to rest! I should say, I don't know how to rest, nor relax for that matter. Seriously. Usually by the end of a day, when I sit down to rest/relax it's by force. I have to. I'm exhausted. The idea that I schedule down time, and DO it, hardly occurs to me. I mean it seems great..for other people, but I don't do it. That's the whole reason my book a month plan keeps getting derailed. When I do have "down time" I always find a way to fill it. I've already moved around just about every piece of furniture in the house (literally), stripped several layers of upholstery of an old couch, and bought a half a truck load of "projects." Rest and relax didn't even occur to me till this morning. I do want to learn to relax. The question is how? Where do I begin? I'm seriously going to try to attempt to do this. I believe it's wise to be able to take a break. I just need to learn how to take one. I'll let you know how it goes...

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


A Weekend of Bad Habits

This weekend did not go as planned. Me thinks I may have over scheduled yet again. For the purpose of this post we'll just called that bad habit #1. I wanted to turn the soil in the vegetable garden, and address the weeds there. I also wanted to expand the garden area. That was the priority.

Instead, I worked on the second dresser. Enter bad habit #2: the unwillingness to adapt focus to ever changing circumstances, and environments. Also known as inflexibility. What is started must be finished, so I finished that dresser I told you guys about.

From that:

To this:
 

If you look in the mirror you can see its previously finished mate. Yes, our bedroom looks a hot mess! Now you know why I'm doing all of this DIY stuff. I'm hoping I'll have pics of my bedroom redo on the cheap, in a few weeks. Maybe I'll even be brave enough to share them. Anyhow, somewhere in the middle of the dresser redo, I decided the project wasn't living up to expectation. Bad habit #3: unrealistic expectations. I hate when the projected outcome is not the reality. For a number of reasons this dresser is the poster child. I decided, it's time I make my peace with disappointment. Besides, I like it better as it is now, than it was, so I'm gonna keep the dresser as is...for now.  I can't promise I won't cave and fix it later. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Nilla and Nuts

I may have shared that I'm on a quest to simplify my life. It began small. Very small. I decluttered  the "junk draw." Soon after, I progressed to the "junk closet."  That was followed by decluttering and organizing what my daughter dubbed "the hoarder room." OK, so maybe I wasn't quite ready to be on a certain show, but that room was pretty close. One by one projects are being completed. With the completion of each project comes the courage, and oddly the creativity to tackle another. Creativity doesn't usually "play nice" with me, but I've literally been praying for it. How else can I make a house a home on a limited budget? As it turns out my prayers are being answered. Lately I'm one walking idea after another. You'll probably be seeing more of them...
One area where I did not expect that creativity to extend is the kitchen.
I do well with a recipe, but I usually don't create my own... that is until recently. Yesterday afternoon found me hungry. As it happens, so was my two year old. I reached into a box of mini Nilla Wafers for her with one hand. I had peanuts for me in the other. Do you know what happens when you combine Nilla Wafers, AND dry roasted, unsalted peanuts? MAGIIC!
How have I managed to live all these years unaware of this? I googled it. Turns out, people have been doing Nilla Wafers and peanut butter for quite some time. Funny, because before I googled it, I tried it with peanut butter. It was pretty good, but I liked it better with the nuts. Maybe it was the crunch. Perhaps a crunchy peanut butter would have been better. I'll try that next time. I'm not saying I reinvented the wheel or anything, nor am I saying it's healthy, but tasty? Yes indeed.  If you happen to have these two in your cupboard, then it's about time they met...in your mouth :) Shout out to Nilla and nuts. It's a snack worth trying at least once.


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Weekend Warrior Project

I tend to be an all or nothing kinda gal. I'm either doing everything, or nothing at all. This weekend due to the weather and the time change, I was in do everything mode. 
We bought a house a just over a year ago. It was a foreclosure and the task of making it home on a tiny budget was frankly, overwhelming. For the longest time I did nothing... but complain. In the last few months though, the idea of starting small has gained momentum. I decided I'd tackle my "projects" one at a time. This weekend's project was to make a french mid century modern chest in the master bedroom reflective of the people that share that room. Sounds simple, but my husband taste is more like this:
Now doesn't that just scream MAN!!!! The problem is my taste is more like this:

I'll admit it, this is feminine. So how do I make us both happy? How do I take this:




and make it reflect us both? This is what I came up with:



It was a lot of work, but I like the results. This dresser has a mate, any guesses what (God willing) this weekend's project will be?

Monday, March 11, 2013

It's Monday Ya'll

OK, so my house looks like it was used for a frat party- minus the beer cans. Yep, it's Monday, and I'm in full domestic mode. I have every intention of posting pics of what I did this weekend, but I need today to clean up the chaos. Trust me, you wouldn't want to see this, but hang on pics on the way...

Friday, March 8, 2013

Lighten Up

Some people look forward to Christmases, birthdays, Halloween and other celebrations. I won't tell you I don't have my favorite holiday. I do. I even have a favorite time of year. When daylight savings times ends in the fall I'm about in mourning! So what we get an extra hour of sleep? I'll keep the sun being up until nearly 9pm, thank you! In addition, or because of taking the sun away it gets colder. It's fair to say, I'm a bit crankier in the fall and winter months. 
On the flip side, once March gets here I'm positively giddy! Now don't get me wrong, Easter is my favorite holiday, but March is not necessarily my favorite month. To me, March is like Christmas Eve, or like a Friday night. It ratchets up your level of anticipation. You know good things are on the way, like HEAT! Whatever has been, will no longer be. As the days tick by, the excitement builds. All the things I most love in a year are so close, warm weather, shorts, tanks, flip flops, flowers, gardens, long runs, rides, grilling, heat, berry patches, the beach, HEAT, and more. The best part of the whole thing: MORE DAYLIGHT to do it all!  
It should comes as no surprise, that this time of year, this topic is my conversation. I keep asking my family, "Does anyone notice anything different about the time and sky?" When I did it the first couple of times my daughter was happy to play along. At this point, the folks at my house are over it. I'll ask you: Does anyone notice anything different about the time and the sky? I sure do, and this weekend when Day Light Savings time begins, we'll all be forced to take notice. 
Meanwhile, I can barely contain myself! It's Friday. It's March, time changes, and we've got a warm weekend ahead. I'm grinning wildly over here! It doesn't get much better than this. I feel like a kid with his head pressed against the glass waiting for a long rain to end. OK, so I'd probably be playing in the rain, but you get the idea. The anticipation around here is through the roof! 
Happy weekend everybody. Make the most of it, and some memories while doing so. God willing, I know I will. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Patience

"I'm waiting as fast as I can!" Hands down, that's one of of my favorite quotes. It's not mine, but I share that sentiment with the little girl who coined it. Patience and I couldn't be more opposite. I've had the thought that had my parents named me Patience, I'd be a walking contradiction. Cringe. I'm pretty sure I would have changed my name the second I was able to.
I have noticed though, the lessons you hate the most are the ones you need the most. For this cause, lessons to work on this attribute keeps occurring, so I've been trying...harder. "Try harder" is my natural bent. The problem with "try harder" is that it never really works for me. Where patience concerned it seems especially counter productive. One thought emerging out this whole thing, is just how unattractive a quality impatience is. It's at the root of anger issues, and is dripping with pride. I used to think that I am pretty flexible person, but how can you be both impatient and flexible? I recognize that change is necessary, so where do I begin? I have no idea! What seems to work best for me is to take it one day at a time. If it were up to me I could have, I would have fixed this along time ago. I now realize, that if God shows you a problem, He'll help you fix it. I guess that's what some would call surrender. What I do know is, I can't fake patience. I remember hearing and reading in James (1:2-4) that when you ask for patience, you'll get tested. I can corroborate, it's true! Once I made the connection I stopped asking God for patience. I did however attempt to trick Him by asking that He help me to "show patience." How do you show a quality you scarcely possess? I guess I was hoping that he would magically zap me with it. He didn't. Looks like God is not going to give up on this lesson, so I'll bow the knee again and learn something new, patience.