Monday, December 2, 2013

Weekend Hiking at the Dam

 Happy 2nd of December! I am so excited to welcome the Christmas season!
This weekend we lived it up in our typical foothill town life way. We started the weekend with a hike along the lake near our house.
Our house is still on the market so as we are in this limbo of waiting for the house to sell before moving to the big city we are savoring what time we have left living walking distance from this:
We cut our tree from our yard and walked around downtown Nevada City and Grass Valley this weekend. We also got a special visitor, which I'll tell you a little more about tomorrow.

Be blessed.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Christmas Crafting Mythbusters Edition: Coat Hanger Tree Ball Wreath

 If you're on Pinterest, (Let's face it, every woman between the ages of 16 and 45 is), you've probably seen this pin, where it makes it look SO simple to make a Christmas wreath out of a coat hanger and about a million (85) tree balls. The original post for this craft can be found here. Basically you glue the caps down on the tree balls and then string them on a rounded coat hanger. It just seems to good to be true. This is one I just HAD to try out.
Last year I bought a bunch of tree ball ornaments on clearance at Kmart after Christmas specifically for this project. And I pulled a hanger out of my closet. I quickly realized that these four boxes would not be enough so I grabbed yet another box of ornaments that I bought on clearance last year to add to this.
So with my glue gun in hand, I glued the caps down and started stringing. It looked promising a few balls in.
Every time I strung and ornament on though the whole thing would shift so it was hard to determine what order I should string the ornaments in. I just winged it.
And a few more, still looking good...
Mostly complete. Near the end it felt like this project would never end, it felt like I added just as many balls to the last 6 inches of wire as I had already strung on the entire wreath.
And done! I still have to find a wreath hanger to hang this on my door... or in my window.. our front door gets slammed a lot so a window would probably be safer.
Just like all the other people who have tried this Pin, I knew I was done when balls started to pop off when I started to twist the coat hanger ends back together. I could probably fill this out by getting a few more smaller ornaments and gluing them in the spaces where you can still see the hanger but over all, I really like it.
So there you go, you really CAN make a wreath out of some Christmas Tree balls and a coat hanger. 
Have you tested a Pinterest Myth lately?

Be blessed.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

Have a wonderful day of thankfulness, eat too much, rest in the glow of the full and drunken love of your family and may you have teenagers in your family that are forced to do the dishes.

Be blessed.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Leather Feather Crown

I've been loving making the leather crowns lately and I have to say, so far, this one is my absolute fave. It's trendy, it's delicate and it's so pretty and versatile.
I love the colors of the feathers in this one. There's some pearl, light pink, gold and a robin's egg blue.
Each feather was hand cut and arranged and then carefully sewn onto a cream satin ribbon.
The fringe on the feathers twists so beautifully and really makes this piece lay nicely.
I can't wait to try these in different color combinations, maybe even some simple combs or clips with just a few leather feathers.
Once I get a few more of these made they'll be at NEVA Co. in Nevada City as well as my Etsy shop. And of course, I always take custom orders.

Be blessed.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Festive Leather Star Crown Headband

This little crown came out of a bag of scrap leather, a need for a cute way to dress up my short hair and a general obsession with anything celestial at the moment.
The stars are hand cut from metallic gold leather and backed with white felt. A black satin ribbon ties the whole thing together. (Pun intended, of course!) It could even be worn as an accent belt if you've got an itty bitty waist, or a necklace.
This would be perfect for a Birthday, Christmas or New Year's party or any day you want to feel like the queen of awesome.
These will be available at NEVA Co. in downtown Nevada City, CA next month. If you would like to purchase one of your own, I hope to have them in my Etsy shop soon, you can email me if you'd like to order one before then.
What is on your winter wardrobe wishlist this year? (Me? I want more of those adorable floral print and sweater tights so that I can keep on wearing dresses through the winter!)

Be blessed.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Discipline Jars

As a parent I feel like I am constantly evolving new techniques to get my kids to do their chores, listen and obey and generally be nice to each other and everyone around them. We've done time outs, we've done natural consequences, we've done charts and stickers and games. It is exhausting.
Our newest system I adopted from a post over at Rage Against the Minivan, wherein Kristen explains a "token economy" where kids earn sticks for desired behaviors and lose sticks for undesired behaviors. This could really be done with anything, pennies, pom poms, marbles, as long as the kids can SEE how many items they have in their jar.

After the kids earn a set number of sticks/marbles/pennies they get a reward, usually something that you were already going to get like a new backpack or a trip to the zoo. I remember teachers using marble jars like this in grade school, when we filled a jar we got a pizza party, when the class was being rowdy and not calming down all a teacher would have to do is remove a marble. It was super effective.
I didn't write the goals on ours mainly because I didn't have a label large enough but we discussed what is expected of our boys every day and they get the gist. The main desired behaviors we're working on are:

1. Keep hands to yourself
2. Stay in bed at night
3. Be helpful (Do your chores, extra sticks for extra help)
4. Be respectful (Listen and Obey. No whining, nagging, name calling or disrespectful behavior)
5. Be independent (Get dressed by yourself, pick out your own clothes, make your bed, etc)

My five year old definitely gets it and has been looking for ways to earn more sticks. When he saw a stuffed animal at the thrift store he wanted, (fifty cents), I bought it and put it next to his jar. When he gets to 15 sticks he gets to play with it. I made a jar for my two-year-old thinking we could try it, but I was unsure if he'd catch on with the whole long term goals thing. Surprisingly, the threat of losing a stick has stopped him from screaming in the car and caused him to turn around and come back when he started to run away from me.
The awesome thing about this system is you can put it together with stuff you already own and make it fit in with your decor. I used this jar from amazon and these two jars from Ikea which I already had. I just picked up some craft sticks and vinyl labels from my local craft store to complete it. It's high up on our bookshelf so the boys can see it but only mom and dad can touch it. We started them out with five sticks each so they'd have something to lose just to get the system going.
So far we're really liking it and it seems like the kids really like it too, it gives them something physical to gauge their behavior, the sticks multiply when they're doing stuff they're supposed to and disappear when behavior is not so great. I find it keeps me from having to lecture or yell, a big plus for everybody.

What has been working for you lately with your kids?

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Compton House Tour: My Craft Room

It is becoming a tradition that I don't show off my studio space until we're planning on moving. However, I've only had two craft rooms in my entire life so does two times really make a tradition?
My studio space in this house doubled as our guest room but in reality it got more of a workout as a place for me to make a huge mess that we could close the door on.
This is the cleanest that room has EVER been (Which probably explains why I don't show you my craft room until we're planning on moving). And currently I'm making a mess in there, even though we're still showing it to buyers and it's on the market, because Christmas is coming and I am in full on creativity mode.
I love that this room as a sliding door out to the patio. Sometimes, if I'm lucky, the kids will get along and stay in sight on the patio while I work in my studio. I can see and hear pretty much everything that's going on down there from this room so that's a plus.
I have never had a whole closet to store my supplies in and that has been a dangerous thing. Fortunately I've kept that pretty under control.
I kept the same paint color that I had in my first studio, mainly because when we moved into this house we painted the entire upstairs and I figured I already knew what looked good with my craft room decor so it was one less color to pick out. It has been a really pretty and calming room.
As you can see my fabric shelf has just gotten fuller as I've had less time to sew but I am still just as addicted to buying fabric. Oh but it's so pretty... my precious....

Thanks for checking out my house. If you know anyone wanting to buy a home near the lake in Nevada County, send them this way!

Be blessed.