Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wall Map

I had a great idea one day. I would decorate the boys room with old wall maps. yeah right. i perused ebay, etsy, craigslist... only to find it would cost me quite a bit- those old maps we hated in elementary school that the teachers pulled down and pointed to with a long "i-am-the-teacher-and-in-control power dowel rod", well, who'da known, they'd be so expensive later in life. to the tunes of a couple hundred bucks! for ONE!
well, i decided Id make my own. My way. i figured chalkboard, eraseable. so I could quiz the boys. and add my notes, trips, hometowns... you get the idea.

here's what I came up with:

the white outline of the united states and the state lines are permanent. Everything else is chalked in and can be erased. and I am thrilled with the results. I decided to add them to my etsy shop.
Ill make anyone a fabric chalkboard map custom sized and detailed. Want the states labled? sure thing. Want a map of your state? ok. want it smaller? or larger? Ill do it.
you can find them here:

Monday, July 18, 2011

I journal

I have journalled as long as I can remember. I think it started as a way for me to sit still. In school, when a teacher was talking I had the hardest time sitting there doing nothing but listening. I doodled in order to listen. When I draw, paint, color... i listen better. It may not make sense, or it may look like bordom but it wasnt. It was focus. That understanding always helped me as a teacher. I had kids that listened better standing. or drawing, or fiddleing. I tried to understand behaviors before I jumped to conclusions. But now as an adult, I rarely have to sit and listen to speakers (except church- and yes, brian, i am drawing AND listening!) but my kids love to draw and it could be laborious if i wasnt joining in on the fun. I cannot leave a 3 year old alone with markers so when we haul out the art supplies, i get excited because I get to draw. or paint. or sketch. or glue. or cut. ok, getting excited and i dont get to draw today. :(
I have found that journalling helps my quiet times. I just cannot sit still quietly. unless i am drawing or writing. I write my prayers, or my scriptures. it helps me sit and listen.
I have journals galore. I have a prayer journal for each kid. i just write my prayers for that child and it over the long run creates a memory journal. my fears, hopes, cares, challenges, all recorded. One day when they are being a BUTT and Ive had it, I'll show them that Ive prayed for them all their lives. :)
my journals from this year:

I did find one helpful thing to corral all my pens, pencils, markers, etc... this was a diaper bag at one point for me. now, its a journal bag. it keeps everything easy to find, organized and "stashable".

here are a few of my journal/art/doodle/sketch pages.

one guess whats on my mind here:

I think everyone should have a journal. When you are gone from this fleeting life, how wonderful would it be for your kids and grandkids to have a record of your thoughts, prayers, hopes and dreams? I would love to hold my grandmothers hand writing and read what was on her heart.
So, if i love you, and i give you gifts on a regular basis, and it is always a new journal, just know, that i treasure your words and thoughts and dreams. And i believe your family would too. Sure, you may get a journal from me for EVERY SINGLE GIFT FOR YEARS, and no, its not because I'm dumb and forget what i give the year before. its because i hope someday you'll pick up that journal and just write.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

My Ikea Idea

I only have time for a quick post this morning but I just had to share. I call this an Ikea hack but not sure if it truly qualifies as I didnt necessarily modify the item, just re purposed it.

This is a magazine file/holder. It came from Ikea (thanks Aaron!). I love it because it isnt paper or plastic. Its wood. It can be painted, stained, colored :), whatever. I didnt do anything to this particular one because, well, it IS inside my cabinet.
I added the Command Velcro hanging strips to the back (you could screw it in if desired but Im lazy) and stuck it to the inside bathroom cabinet door and voila! curling iron storage.